WASHINGTON, July 22 (UPI) -- A former CIA official says it is "wrong and shameful" for the White House to protect aides involved in revealing a CIA operative's name.
The Democrats' weekly radio address is broadcast Saturday but the Democratic National Committee released a transcript of the address by Larry Johnson late Friday. The DNC said Johnson worked with the CIA and the State Department's Office of Counter Terrorism.
Democrats have been making much of White House aides' reported roles in the release of CIA operative Valerie Plame's name. They claim it was done in retaliation against her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, who disputed Bush administration claims regarding Iraqi nuclear ambitions.
Karl Rove, one of President Bush's most trusted advisers, talked of Plame with at least one journalist but said he did not know she was undercover. Revealing the name of an undercover CIA agent is a federal crime and Bush had originally said he would fire anyone involved the leak of Plame's name.
Johnson -- a registered Republican -- said: "We are confronted with a president who is willing to sit by while political operatives savage the reputations of good Americans like Valerie and Joe Wilson. This is wrong and this is shameful."