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Power User
Posts: 42531

« on: November 16, 2006, 11:31:33 PM »

On various occasions I have mentioned NG as someone to keep an eye on for the presidency in  2008.  Here is his latest:

Which Bipartisanship Will Bush Choose?
November 16, 2006; Page A18

The election results pose two enormous strategic choices for America. First, the obvious outcome of a Democratic-controlled Congress and a Republican White House is the need for bipartisan cooperation in order to get anything done. The key question is: Which kind of bipartisanship will emerge? Will there be a Ronald Reagan approach to bipartisanship which appeals to the conservative majority of the House? Or will there be an establishment bipartisanship which cuts deals between liberals and the White House? Second: Will the departure of Donald Rumsfeld and his replacement by Robert Gates lead to a tactical effort to minimize the difficulties of Iraq, or to a fundamental rethinking of the larger threats to American safety?

These two choices are strikingly interrelated. An establishment bipartisanship between the White House and liberal congressional leaders will almost certainly make it necessary to focus narrowly on how to minimize difficulties in Iraq and postpone consideration of the larger threats to America for the remainder of this and into the next presidency. By contrast, a conservative bipartisanship that knits together the House Republicans and the Blue Dog Democrats into a floor majority, working with a White House that emphasizes popular issues at the grassroots, would make it much easier to focus on the larger threats to American safety. (Such a bipartisanship could stress making the cap gains tax cut permanent; controlling set-asides and discretionary spending; oversight on failing bureaucracies and waste; English as the language of government; and biofuels as part of an energy policy.)

How these bipartisanship choices are made will do a great deal to define our government and politics for the next few years. Each strategy cross-pressures a different part of the House and Senate. Each requires some members to choose between their loyalty to their values and those held by their districts on the one hand and their party leadership on the other.

A liberal establishment strategy will almost certainly split the GOP and lead to a grassroots rebellion against the kind of policies which a Pelosi-Reid alliance would force on the White House. House Republicans would find themselves split again and again as their leadership cooperated with Nancy Pelosi to bring forward liberal legislation. Conservative senators would find themselves blocking and filibustering liberal legislation brought forward by the Senate establishment Republican leadership and Harry Reid. Their supporters at home would be angrily insistent on active opposition to a liberal establishment legislative agenda.

On the other hand, a conservative populist grassroots strategy would almost certainly make daily interactions with liberal leaders more confrontational as they found themselves nominally chairing committees but losing votes on the floor and having their initiatives rejected by a conservative grassroots coalition. With a conservative populist grassroots strategy it is the 44 Blue Dog Democrats who would find themselves cross-pressured. In the House, some 54 Democrats won by claiming they were much more conservative than Nancy Pelosi, and much more conservative than the San Francisco values she represents. Here, they would be forced to choose between their voters back home and the promises made to them during the campaign, and their leadership.

Ironically, the very nature of the Democratic victory makes it possible to re-establish the conservative Democrat and House Republican coalition which made the Reagan legislative victories of 1981-82 possible. Tip O'Neill was the liberal Democratic speaker when Reagan became president, but he did not have a liberal majority in the House. Yet despite a seemingly liberal Democrat lock in a 242-192 majority, they lost control of the floor on the most important bill of Reagan's first term. His tax cuts were initially passed 238-195 with 48 Democrats splitting from the leadership and siding with Reagan and the GOP. The final passage of the conference report passed 282-95, with a 113-vote Democratic majority siding with Reagan and only 95 liberal democrats voting "no."

I was a sophomore during this exciting Reagan first term and I learned from him the art of appealing to the American people to win votes in Washington. When we passed welfare reform in 1996, the Democrats split 98 "yes" and 98 "no." When we passed the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, the Democrats split 153 "yes" and only 52 diehard liberals voted "no."

If President Bush decides to govern as President Reagan did, he will work to unify the Blue Dog Democrats with the Republicans to win a handful of very large victories while accepting a constant barrage of unhappiness from the liberal leadership. That is what conservative bipartisanship is like. If on the other hand, President Bush decides on an establishment strategy of cooperating with the liberal leadership, he will guarantee splitting his own party and will see his legacy drift further and further to the left as the Pelosi-Reid wing of their party demands more and more concessions.

This choice of which strategy to follow domestically has an enormous implication for national security. A liberal coalition will focus narrowly on Iraq and seek to avoid thinking about the scale of threat we face internationally. A conservative bipartisan coalition will look first to the larger threat to American security and will then seek to find solutions in Iraq to strengthen American security. It is hard to see how a liberal coalition will be able to look at the larger threats to our safety, even when the threat, articulated in this warning by Vice Admiral Patrick Walsh, is clear: "What we are talking about today is an ideology that thrives on murder, intimidation and fear. It puts innocent people at risk, particularly those in open societies. What we are talking about are people who worship death itself."

Thus the decision about which bipartisanship to pursue with regard to a legislative agenda and the Iraq war becomes for the Bush administration a decision about how safe and how prosperous America will be under divided government.

Mr. Gingrich is a former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2006, 10:00:31 PM »

If I could get 1 to 1,000 odds here in Las vegas I would bet on Mitt Romney as the Republican nominee and 2008 winner of Olympic Um Presidential Gold! Eric

Romney strategy pays off quickly
Multistate tactic overcomes limits
By Scott Helman and Chase Davis, Globe Staff and Globe Correspondent  |  June 11, 2006

Governor Mitt Romney is financing the early stages of his potential presidential campaign with a novel, multistate fund-raising operation that is allowing him to maximize legal donations, outflank top Republican competitors, and minimize public scrutiny.

Since July 2004, Romney has set up affiliates of his political action committee, the Commonwealth PAC, in five states. By having donors spread their contributions across the various affiliates, Romney has been able to effectively evade the $5,000-per-donor annual contribution limit that applies only to federal committees, which most presidential aspirants set up to build initial support for their candidacies.

The multistate system is helping Romney raise money quickly from relatively few contributors, and foster valuable political relationships around the country. It also is a strategy several potential opponents for the Republican nomination cannot use: Federal office-holders, under new campaign finance rules, are barred from operating such state affiliates.

That means possible 2008 competitors such as Senators John McCain of Arizona and George Allen of Virginia have to rely solely on their federal PACs and thus cannot accept more than $5,000 from any contributor each year.

``I think it's a brilliant strategy," said Rich Bond, a former Republican National Committee chairman and a McCain supporter. ``It's fully compliant with the law, yet allows Romney to deploy political assets in a comprehensive fashion."

Globe graphics:  Wallets behind Romney  Romney fund-raising 

A review by the Globe of Commonwealth PAC campaign finance filings indicates that more than 100 donors have given a total of $1.6 million to Romney's various PAC organizations over the past two years. It is a relatively small amount compared to what Romney would need for a presidential campaign -- President Bush raised $273 million in 2004, for example -- but the creation of a fund-raising network will help establish Romney in monied circles that will be crucial if he decides to run for the White House.

A few supporters and their families have given roughly $100,000 or more to Commonwealth PAC, but many donors have made large contributions to several affiliates at a time. On March 30, for example, Florida investment adviser Lee Munder gave $5,000 to Romney's federal PAC, $18,250 to his Iowa affiliate, $18,250 to the one in Michigan, and $3,500 to the one in South Carolina, campaign finance records show.

The Commonwealth PAC is a so-called leadership PAC, which politicians often establish in advance of their official candidacies to finance cross-country travel, maintain a staff, and distribute tactical campaign contributions to local politicians in key states. The money these committees raise is far less than what it takes to mount a formal presidential campaign, but the committees are crucial to building name recognition and a network of donors early on. (Candidates cannot use leadership PAC money to finance their campaigns once they officially declare.)

Romney's multistate strategy, made possible by a campaign finance law that McCain helped write, was crafted by the governor's former advisers Mike Murphy and Trent Wisecup, ``and a smart lawyer or two," according to a person with knowledge of the plans.

One of those lawyers was Benjamin L. Ginsberg, who was a top lawyer for the Bush-Cheney presidential campaigns in 2000 and 2004.

The 2008 presidential election cycle is the first full cycle in which the new campaign finance rules apply, and Romney appears to be taking advantage of them more than other potential candidates. New York Governor George Pataki, a Republican, and former Virginia governor Mark Warner, a Democrat, each have state affiliates of their PACs, but only in one or two places.

``It's been well-documented that being a governor is an ideal office from which to seek the presidency, and the McCain-Feingold law has just magnified that," said FEC chairman Michael Toner, adding that such a system is ``a potential leg up for office-holders such as Governor Romney that their federal counterparts do not have."

Romney has PAC affiliates in Iowa, Michigan, South Carolina, New Hampshire, and, formerly, in Arizona. Particularly beneficial to Romney are the affiliates in Iowa and Michigan, where there are no limits on how much an individual can give. (Donors can give up to $3,500 in South Carolina and up to $5,000 in New Hampshire.)

But the multistate setup is not necessarily helpful to voters, who have to hunt down public campaign finance filings in several places to see who has given to the Commonwealth PAC, said Massie Ritsch, communications director for the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit that tracks money in politics.

``Setting up individual committees in multiple states makes it hard for the public to learn who's supporting a campaign financially," Ritsch said.

Asked about how Romney's fund-raising strategy differed from those of other potential candidates, Spencer Zwick, who oversees Commonwealth PAC finances, wrote in an e-mail, ``I'm not familiar with how other political leaders structure their political action committees. Furthermore, all of our fund-raising and donation activity, whether it's in connection with a state or the federal PAC, is fully disclosed and available for public inspection."

Romney said last week he was ``very pleased" with how PAC fund-raising was going, but he played down the amount of money he was taking in, saying it pales in comparison to what would be necessary to run for reelection as governor.

``There's no particular reason to raise vast amounts," he said. ``This is being used to support Republican candidates around the country, and it's not something where you're trying to create records or large numbers."

Zwick said he would not discuss fund-raising targets with the media. He said in an earlier e-mail that their focus for the first half of the year was raising money and the focus in the second half will be distributing it.

It is evident Romney has recently been raising money at quite a clip: He hosted at least three PAC fund-raisers last week, in Michigan, Utah, and California, and plans to host another tomorrow in Logan, Utah.

The Globe's review of campaign records offers a glimpse into the early donors Romney is attracting. They come from more than a dozen states -- one met Romney at a cocktail party and has backed him since, another hails from a family that's known his for almost 100 years, and others know him from his days as a venture capitalist.

Kem Gardner is a Utah developer who, along with family members, has given more than $100,000 to the Commonwealth PAC, records show. Gardner said he has known Romney since both lived in Belmont in the 1980s, and that he and many other supporters stand ready to do much more.

``We just hope he gives us an opportunity to work for him," said Gardner, who calls himself ``a good, mainstream Democrat." ``He can count on my support in a big way."

Another leading contributor is Jon M. Huntsman, a fellow Mormon whose father-in-law, David Haight, grew up with Romney's father, George, in Oakley, Idaho. Huntsman and his sons have contributed more than $130,000, records show.

``I've pushed him and encouraged him and done everything that I think our family could to move [him] to the next level and be an actual candidate," said Huntsman, whose son, Jon Jr., is governor of Utah.

Together, Gardner and Huntsman represent two important fund-raising bases for Romney as he eyes the presidency: Utahns and fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Romney is well known in Utah chiefly because he ran the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, which was widely seen as headed for disaster until he took over. Utah residents have given more than $680,000 to his PAC affiliates, more than any other state. Romney is also one of the best-known members of the Mormon church, which has about 5.7 million members in the United States.

Another Romney donor, Robert Lichfield of Utah, is a controversial figure as the founder of the World Wide Association of Specialty Programs and Schools, which runs boarding schools for struggling teens. At least seven of the organization's schools have closed following allegations of child abuse, the Associated Press reported in October. Lichfield, a frequent Republican contributor, has given Commonwealth PAC $25,000, according to records.

Some political specialists caution that potential presidential candidates cannot be too dependent on a small group of big contributors. That's because once candidates officially declare their intentions, they are permitted to accept only about $2,000 from individuals for the primary cycle and another $2,000 for the general election.

``You can't rely on big donors, because running for president you've got to have a strong network of people around the country who are willing to go out to their friends and neighbors and ask them to join them in the effort," said Jack Oliver, who was finance director for Bush when he first ran for office in 2000.

Romney also recently revamped the Commonwealth PAC website ( to allow online contributions. Contributors also can print out a document to send in with checks; it asks that donors first give to the federal PAC; then it lists the state affiliates, noting any contribution limits.

Possible opponents such as McCain and Allen have their advantages, too. Both have already raised money for federal office that they could transfer to a presidential campaign. In McCain's case, he has broad name recognition from his presidential run in 2000.

Craig Goldman, executive director of McCain's PAC, Straight Talk America, said that while his group is aware of Romney's multistate strategy, McCain's PAC has raised $4 million by soliciting checks from $5 to $5,000.

``We're very happy where we are fund-raising," he said.

Allen's campaign manager, Dick Wadhams, said Allen has been focused on his reelection to the Senate this year and has not devoted that much attention to his leadership PAC, Good Government for America. Told of Romney's strategy, Wadhams said, ``Wow. Well, that's pretty creative, no doubt about it."

Scott Helman can be reached at

Copyright 2006 Globe Newspaper Company.
Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2006, 11:44:04 AM »

WSJ Political Diary:

Political Intelligence

Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi mystified even some veteran political watchers by picking a string of internal fights since her party won control of Congress last month. Late last week she revealed the mystery behind one of these dust-ups -- why she was willing to endure so much controversy to pick a House Intelligence Committee chairman who met her specifications.

Ms. Pelosi has let it be known she's planning to dramatically reshape the committee to make it a potent force for clashing with the Bush administration over its handling of the war on terror. Starting in January, the Intelligence Committee will have a lot more say over how much money is spent on spy agencies, breaking down the traditional separation between appropriators and overseers so her hand-picked chairman will be in a strong position to try to run the intelligence agencies in competition with the president.

Ms. Pelosi drew a lot of criticism for not selecting as its chairman the most senior Democrat on the Intelligence Committee, fellow Californian Rep. Jane Harman. Ms. Harman is a defense hawk who hasn't used her seat on the committee to launch partisan attacks. Instead, Ms. Pelosi had to back down from naming her first choice, the scandal-dogged Alcee Hastings, to the job. Her second choice, Texas Rep. Silvestre Reyes, quickly made clear he wasn't picked for his expertise in global matters either. He flunked one of his first press interviews when Congressional Quarterly stumped him on the difference between Sunnis and Shiites and what side of Islam's central divide groups like al Qaeda or Hezbollah fall on.

Mideast expert Danielle Pletka, formerly a GOP Congressional staffer, told the Houston Chronicle: "If you don't really care enough about the challenge of Islamic extremism and terrorism to learn the basics, then perhaps when offered a plum position, you should say no. That goes against the grain in a town that likes titles, but it is the honorable course." Rest assured, however, that Mr. Reyes has one aspect of the job down pat: He knows where his marching orders will be coming from.

-- Brendan Miniter

Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2007, 09:14:35 AM »

Tanned, Rested, Ready

Senator Barack Obama has returned from his Hawaiian vacation and all signs are that
he plans to launch a presidential bid later this month. But many Democratic leaders
remain skeptical that he can topple frontrunner Hillary Clinton despite his
rapturous media coverage. Political handicapper Charlie Cook estimates that Hillary
"still has at least a 65% chance of taking the nomination." So why is Mr. Obama so
intent on a run, when at age 45 he could afford to wait and run another year? One
answer may be the vice presidency.

"If Obama does even decently in the primaries, he can put down a strong, legitimate
claim he should be the first person considered for the vice presidency," says
Democratic strategist and pollster Doug Schoen. "After all, John Edwards was able to
parlay his second-place showing against John Kerry in the 2004 primaries into
becoming the vice presidential nominee."

Left unspoken by many Democrats is another reason why Mr. Obama might run: he's
betting on the party's fear of offending any bloc of minority voters. The same
Democratic Party that has kowtowed to such charlatans as Jesse Jackson and Al
Sharpton when each ran for president would be unlikely to resist a chorus of media
calls that Mr. Obama join the Democratic ticket if he does well in the primaries.

Mr. Obama has probably decided he has a real shot at the presidency right now, and
the consolation prize would be the vice presidency, a natural launching pad for the
White House. Besides, the visibility, perks and prestige of the Veep's office sure
beat those of the Senate.

-- John Fund

Whom Does Obama Help?

Lost among all the hype over Barack Obama is the reality that his candidacy for
President, if it were to fully materialize, would only serve to reinforce Hillary
Clinton's grip on the Democratic nomination.

With Virginia Governor Mark Warner dropping out last October and Indiana Senator
Evan Bayh's withdrawal before Christmas, Ms. Clinton's vulnerability on her right
has all but disappeared. While the Obama boomlet certainly speaks to the desire
among the press and many in the Democratic Party for someone other than Senator
Clinton, what an Obama run would do is suck a tremendous amount of energy and
enthusiasm away from Hillary Clinton's No. 1 threat to the nomination -- John

There are five names that continually poll above five percent among Democratic
voters: Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Al Gore, John Edwards and John Kerry. Though
Mr. Kerry still enjoys a high level of name ID from the '04 campaign, whatever slim
hope he had of a repeat was destroyed by his pre-election gaffe on the troops in
Iraq. Assuming Mr. Gore is a "no go," that leaves the trio of Clinton, Obama and

While Mr. Edwards ranks between second and fourth place in national polls, he leads
in the most recent Iowa polls and is poised to do well in the early contests in
Nevada and South Carolina. His announcement from New Orleans and all his activities
since 2004 make it clear he intends to run a strongly progressive campaign aimed at
capturing support among the newly energized left of the Democratic Party. The
problem is this is exactly the same constituency an Obama run would invigorate.
Which means in the end Mr. Obama would simply split the progressive,
"anybody-but-Clinton" vote between him and Mr. Edwards, further strengthening Mrs.
Clinton's odds of capturing the nomination.

For Mrs. Clinton, this scenario would have the added benefit of allowing the
perception to form throughout the primary campaign that she was the "centrist" or
"moderate" choice of Democratic voters -- a perception that would serve her well as
she transitions to the general election campaign in the spring of '08.

It is ironic that some of the strongest promoters of an Obama candidacy are
motivated by a dislike of Senator Clinton, but are unwittingly helping her secure
control of the Democratic Party by pushing the young and untested Mr. Obama.

-- John McIntyre, managing editor of


Slaughter to the Lambs

Anne-Marie Slaughter is dean of the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and
International affairs at Princeton. She is also of the view that "under George W.
Bush... law has become a prop for power," that the invasion of Iraq was both
"illegal and illegitimate," and that the President's "efforts to build democracy in
Iraq are underpinned by a misguided view of America's own democracy." Washington
Post columnist Jackson Diehl, who calls her a "likely candidate in a future
Democratic administration," quotes Ms. Slaughter as saying that the idea that the
U.S. is engaged in a war with Islamo-fascism is "absolutely wrong."

Oh, and while we're at it, as a young lawyer in the 1980s, Ms. Slaughter helped
represent the Sandinista dictatorship in Nicaragua in a suit it brought against the
United States in the International Court of Justice. Nicaragua won.

So, you ask, where is el problemo? For the Ivy League professor of today, knee-jerk
liberalism is pretty much the whole job description. The surprise, however, is that
Condoleezza Rice has named none other than Ms. Slaughter to chair the State
Department's Advisory Committee on Democracy Promotion, which includes such worthies
as Mary Ann Glendon of Harvard, Michael Novak of the American Enterprise Institute
and Clifford May of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies.

The committee, of course, is formally powerless. But prestige is its own form of
power, and so is a pedestal, and Ms. Slaughter has now been given both by the
Administration she so publicly detests. Considering that democracy promotion isn't
simply a phrase for this Administration, but the essence of its foreign policy,
that's no small thing to get. Says a senior administration official, "Someone should
be fired for this."

-- Bret Stephens


WSJ Opinion Journal

« Last Edit: January 06, 2007, 09:24:14 AM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
Power User
Posts: 9483

« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2007, 01:39:11 PM »

The Great Forgotten Debate
Forty years ago, Reagan taught RFK a lesson that ought to be remembered.
By Paul Kengor
National Review referred yesterday to this historic debate with excellent  commentary and context:

You can read the text of the debate here:

My take, rather than a win or a loss, was that the answers from the two main players were far more civil than we see in the arguments of today.
Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2007, 11:15:17 AM »

The Corporate Welfare Congress
October 23, 2007; Page A18
Perhaps you've heard that this is the Congress for "the little guy," the "forgotten" middle class, the working stiff. If that was the plan, it isn't working. On present trends, the 110th Congress will go down as one of the biggest blowouts in corporate welfare history.

That's saying something, considering that the last GOP Congress gave big business some $92 billion a year in subsidies, according to the Cato Institute. Cato's latest analysis indicates that if all the pending spending bills pass, corporate welfare will exceed $100 billion in direct outlays in 2008.

The handouts for the rich that have a good chance of passing include the most expensive farm bill ever; a rise in the mortgage limits on loans that can be securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (see related article); some $2 billion in loan guarantees to ethanol producers; and expansions in flood and terrorism insurance to benefit home builders, mortgage banks, and real estate developers.

Many of the 40 largest existing corporate welfare are set to get a raise, including the Commerce Department's $116 million manufacturing extension program, the $100 million Advanced Technology Program (which funds R&D for the likes of IBM, General Electric and Xerox), and the $200 million Agriculture Market Access Program, which underwrites foreign advertising for the likes of Pillsbury and Dole. We'd call all of this the "K Street" project, but even Tom DeLay never thought this big:

Big agribusiness. The House has already passed a five-year farm bill with a cost of $286 billion. The USDA calculates that two-thirds of these subsidies are directed to the richest 10% of farmers. The huge cooperatives that grow rice, cotton, corn, wheat and soybeans will get $7.5 billion a year. These handouts will come despite record crop prices, and farm land selling at an average of 18% above a year ago. The USDA estimates that farm net income will reach $87 billion this year, nearly 50% higher than in 2006.

Ethanol. On top of the 51 cent per gallon tax credit for this inefficient fuel, the Senate energy bill requires a doubling of ethanol production from corn, $500 million in new direct payments to ethanol producers, and $2 billion more for loan guarantees for new ethanol refineries.

Big Sugar. The farm bill requires the USDA to buy up domestic sugar equal to the amount that is imported from Mexico under Nafta, which is a disguised form of trade protection. This sweet deal is like requiring the Transportation Department to purchase a Ford and GM car for every Nissan and Toyota imported into the U.S. The taxpayer cost: $1.4 billion.

Flood insurance. The House has passed a bill that replenishes a fund drained by Hurricane Katrina. But along the way it also raises the maximum coverage limits, and for the first time covers wind damage for commercial properties. The National Taxpayers Union calculates that taxpayers could be on the hook for $100 billion of future losses.

Terror insurance. On September 19, the House approved a new federal terrorism backstop for developers at an estimated 10-year cost of $10.4 billion. The original terrorism insurance bill, passed in the wake of 9/11, was supposed to be temporary. But under pressure from business lobbies and insurers, industry won a 15-year extension covering up to 90% of terrorism-related losses.

"Renewable" fuels. Energy bills moving through Congress tax oil companies and pass most of the $25 billion or so in expected revenue to wind, solar and Midwestern biofuels companies, even though private venture capital for such fuels hit new peaks in 2005 and 2006. For 20 years, the feds have poured more than $10 billion into this industry with little reduction in U.S. oil dependence.

Corporate pork. There are 13,000 earmarks in this year's appropriations bills, including hundreds that benefit narrow business groups. Such as: $500,000 to build a baseball stadium for the Cincinnati Reds minor league team in Billings, Montana; $150,000 for the Troy, Michigan Chamber of Commerce; $500,000 for the Arkansas World Trade Center; $4 million for a rail bridge for CSX railroad.

If you want to know how good liberals can tolerate such largesse for the rich, keep in mind that in Washington quids often come with a quo. The latest FEC fundraising reports indicate that industry lobbyists have shifted their allegiance from Republicans and are now funneling cash to Democrats they expect to hold their majority. Roll Call newspaper, which covers Congress, reports that in the first half of 2007 business lobbyists gave "all or most of their cash to Democratic candidates and party committees."

They're getting their money's worth.

Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2007, 03:40:25 PM »

Uncle Jay explains the News:
Power User
Posts: 42531

« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2007, 10:31:56 PM »


So in the end, the Senate voted to confirm Michael Mukasey as Attorney General on Thursday night, 53-40. What happened to the grave threats he posed to the republic?

Yes, Majority Leader Harry Reid took to the floor to explain that the judge was unfit to serve because he wouldn't declaim on the legality of "waterboarding," an interrogation technique that Congress itself hasn't banned. But notably missing in action were the Democrats running for President. Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Chris Dodd had all declared their opposition but never showed for the vote. Their absence suggests that the entire Mukasey "fight" was a political charade. Democrats wanted to appease their antiwar base by raising a fuss, but without actually defeating him. As Dan Rather would say, "Courage."
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