Blog

Jun 15, 2004

What’s Up in NC-1?

As you may already know, Democratic Rep. Frank W. Ballance Jr. resigned from North Carolina’s 1st for health reasons last week, precipitating a July 20 special election.  Well we’ve got our candidate lined up, this is what CQ Politics Daily has to say: Democrats in North Carolina’s 1st Congressional District chose former state Supreme Court Justice G.K. Butterfield on Monday as their nominee for a July 20 special election, which will fill the seat vacated by Democratic Rep. Frank …

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Jun 14, 2004

Matsui in the House

U.S. News: Robert Matsui is batting a thousand, and now he’s got people thinking he can take the whole enchilada. A veteran California congressman, Matsui took over as chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee after the 2002 elections, when Republicans defied history and picked up House seats even though their party held the White House. Facing the uphill task of returning a disorganized and demoralized group of Democrats back to power in the House of Representatives, Matsui was …

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Jun 14, 2004

Quote of the Day

Ron Jr.: “The Bush people have no right to speak for my father, particularly because of the position he’s in now,” he said during a recent interview with Salon. “Yes, some of the current policies are an extension of the ‘80s. But the overall thrust of this administration is not my father’s—these people are overly reaching, overly aggressive, overly secretive, and just plain corrupt. I don’t trust these people.” You mean like when they tried to line up the …

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Jun 14, 2004

New Questions

NYT: Beginning in November, a small unit of interrogators at Abu Ghraib prison began reporting allegations of prisoner abuse, including the beatings of five blindfolded Iraqi generals, in internal documents sent to senior officers, according to interviews with military personnel who worked in the prison.  The disclosure of the documents raises new questions about whether senior officers in Iraq were alerted about serious abuses at the prison before January. Top military officials have said they only learned about abuses …

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Jun 14, 2004

Waxman: Halliburton Stalker

Looks like it’s working: As the government prepared for war in Iraq in the fall of 2002, a senior political appointee in the Defense Department chose oil services giant Halliburton Co. to secretly plan how to repair Iraqi oil fields, and then briefed Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff and other White House officials about the sole-source contract before it was granted. Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.) said the new details about the $1.8 million contract, disclosed last week …

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Jun 14, 2004

Ethics Lesson for DeLay

Houston Chronicle: In a new twist to a bitter Texas political feud, Rep. Chris Bell, a Houston Democrat, is finalizing a House ethics complaint against Republican Majority Leader Tom DeLay of Sugar Land. Bell, a first-term congressman who lost his House seat in a redistricting battle engineered by DeLay, plans to file documents Tuesday seeking an investigation by the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, said spokesman Eric Burns. Officials who have seen a draft of the complaint …

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Jun 14, 2004

Mutiny

LA Times: A group of 26 former senior diplomats and military officials, several appointed to key positions by Republican Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, plans to issue a joint statement this week arguing that President George W. Bush has damaged America’s national security and should be defeated in November. The group, which calls itself Diplomats and Military Commanders for Change, will explicitly condemn Bush’s foreign policy, according to several of those who signed the document. “It is …

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Jun 12, 2004

Supporting the Troops

From the extremely disillusioned Washington Post: THE VOLUNTEER ARMY expects to bear the brunt of danger on behalf of the country in any war. But when failed leadership turns volunteers into conscripts, soldiers have every right to feel misused. President Bush has compared the war against terrorism to the 20th-century struggles against totalitarianism and communism, calling it “the great challenge of our time.” But he has refused to adjust his policies to those stakes. And the first casualty of …

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Jun 12, 2004

Consequences

Wa Po again: “What Saddam did was awful, but what the Americans are doing is worse,” said Abu Ahmed, a laborer who lives with his wife and four sons in a government-built apartment house flanking the road. “They say they are bringing us freedom. But this is what they bring.” Since U.S. forces drove to Baghdad and overthrew President Saddam Hussein in April 2003, the 138,000 American soldiers stationed here have lost their status as liberators in the eyes …

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Jun 12, 2004

Pelosi Tribute to Reagan

Democratic Leader: “All Americans, including those of us who serve in the Congress of the United States, have been touched by the dignity, private strength, and public grace of Nancy Reagan and the entire Reagan family, to whom we offer our prayers and deepest condolences. Our nation is in your debt for the care and love that you gave our President, and for the dignity with which you held his hands at the end. I hope it is a …

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Jun 12, 2004

Sanchez and Abu Ghraib

Washington Post: Lt. Gen. Ricardo S. Sanchez, the senior U.S. military officer in Iraq, borrowed heavily from a list of high-pressure interrogation tactics used at the U.S. detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and approved letting senior officials at a Baghdad jail use military dogs, temperature extremes, reversed sleep patterns, sensory deprivation, and diets of bread and water on detainees whenever they wished, according to newly obtained documents.  The U.S. policy, details of which have not been previously disclosed, …

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Jun 11, 2004

NCC on “Safe Harbor”

National Council of Churches release: ‘Safe Harbor for Churches’ Is Slippery Slope, NCC Warns Tax Bill Would Let Congregations Endorse Candidates  June 11, 2004, WASHINGTON, D.C.—Despite overwhelming opposition from nearly two dozen religious denominations, U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert and Majority Leader Tom Delay have ordered a version of Rep. Walter Jones’ “Houses of Worship” Political Speech Restoration Act to be included on page 379 of a 398 page tax bill (H.R. 4520, American Jobs Creation Act …

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Jun 11, 2004

No Communion for You

BBC: But FaithfulAmerica.org says the administration has not faced up to the moral wrong of what happened. A senior member of President Bush’s own United Methodist Church, Bishop Melvin Talbert, is the public face of the campaign. He told the BBC he believes the administration should be more forthright and forthcoming in dealing with the abuse scandal and rectifying it.

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Jun 11, 2004

Bonjour, Halliburton

Or as Tom DeLay would say, “See ya in jail.” Just a Bump in the Beltway notices that the SEC has picked up on the ongoing French investigation of Halliburton kickbacks in Nigeria under Cheney’s watch: The U.S. government is investigating payments made by a Halliburton Co. (HAL.N) joint venture to the Nigerian government in connection with a liquefied natural gas plant project in Nigeria, the company said on Friday.  Houston-based Halliburton, one of the biggest providers of field …

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Jun 11, 2004

The Terms of the Debate

Josh Marshall wrote astutely, We’re like contestants on Wheel of Fortune with a long phrase spelled out in front of us with maybe one or two letters missing. We know what the letters spell. It’s obvious. We just don’t have the heart to say it out loud. To phrase it differently, there is no debate left about whose direct fault this is.  The only question that remains, as with so much surrounding the GOP, is what part malice and …

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