There has been no shortage of tell-all books from people who once traveled in the Bush White House’s innermost circles and now want to come clean (paging George Tenet), but the latest one, former White House press secretary Scott McClellan’s “What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and What’s Wrong With Washington,” is a real bombshell — primarily because McClellan alleges that the president, the vice president and three other high-ranking officials allowed him to pass “false information” about the Valerie Plame CIA identity leak case to the press.

McClellan doesn’t specify (at least not in this excerpt) which of those high-ranking politicians knew that the information was false at the time, however.

From Public Affairs Books’ excerpt of McClellan’s “What Happened”:

The most powerful leader in the world had called upon me to speak on his behalf and help restore credibility he lost amid the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. So I stood at the White house briefing room podium in front of the glare of the klieg lights for the better part of two weeks and publicly exonerated two of the senior-most aides in the White House: Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

There was one problem. It was not true.

I had unknowingly passed along false information. And five of the highest ranking officials in the administration were involved in my doing so: Rove, Libby, the vice president, the President’s chief of staff, and the President himself.

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Also see this news story on for more about McClellan’s accusations.

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