No one does it better than Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa, this time he claims twelve Americans are murdered every day by illegal aliens. But, like most of Conservatives scare tactics it is totally untrue. There hatred of
But if by a "Liberal" they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people -- their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties -- someone who believes we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a "Liberal," then I'm proud to say I'm a "Liberal." --John F. Kennedy
No one does it better than Republican Rep. Steve King of Iowa, this time he claims twelve Americans are murdered every day by illegal aliens. But, like most of Conservatives scare tactics it is totally untrue. There hatred of
.. cutting and running from this presidential dreams.
... they are willing to give up our freedoms.
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich yesterday said the country will be forced to reexamine freedom of speech to meet the threat of terrorism.During an event in the honor of freedom of speech in which he was giving an award, Newt Gingrich advocates destroying our freedoms.
Gingrich, speaking at a Manchester awards banquet, said a "different set of rules" may be needed to reduce terrorists' ability to use the Internet and free speech to recruit and get out their message.
"We need to get ahead of the curve before we actually lose a city, which I think could happen in the next decade," said Gingrich, a Republican who helped engineer the GOP's takeover of Congress in 1994.
Go to Russia or Tehran if you hate freedom this much. I have had it with Republicans who hate America, who hate our freedoms, who hate what this country stands for, and who think that the only way to save our freedoms from the terrorists is for us to destroy those freedoms first. Honestly, how do these scaredy-cat, quaking-in-their-boots, America-haters even dare call themselves patriotic Americans? They are terrified of their own shadow, these Republicans.Indeed.
What's wrong with President Bush?
At a recent White House reception for freshman members of Congress, Virginia's newest senator tried to avoid President Bush. Democrat James Webb declined to stand in a presidential receiving line or to have his picture taken with the man he had often criticized on the stump this fall. But it wasn't long before Bush found him.George W. Bush has no social skills or compassion.
"How's your boy?" Bush asked, referring to Webb's son, a Marine serving in Iraq.
"I'd like to get them out of Iraq, Mr. President," Webb responded, echoing a campaign theme.
"That's not what I asked you," Bush said. "How's your boy?"
"That's between me and my boy, Mr. President," Webb said coldly, ending the conversation on the State Floor of the East Wing of the White House.
Folks, political enemy or friend, that is no way - ever- for anyone to talk to the father of a kid who's in a combat zone.Yes, it is.
This is the same man who reminisced about his hell-raisin' during a speech at the worst natural disaster in American history. This is the same man who, when, asked to name his greatest achievement while president, "joked" that it was when he caught a large fish in his fake pond on his Crawford estate - sorry, ranch. This is the same man who, when informed that a second plane had hit the World Trade Center in less than 10 minutes, sat reading "My Pet Goat" in a children's classroom. This is the same man who, in front of a supporter who he assumed wouldn't report it, mockingly imitated a woman about to be executed in his state.
Rep. Alcee L. Hastings of Florida
Sorry, haters, God is not finished with me yetDemocratic Congressmen from Florida taking one more shot at his critics for opposing his candidacy for chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee.
Joe '08 Biden really thinks he is going to become President. He is already moving to the right for the general election without even winning the Democratic nomination for President. Following the lead of Republicans
Sen. Joe Biden, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee's incoming chairman, wants to get tough with Mexico, calling it an "erstwhile democracy" with a "corrupt system" responsible for illegal immigration and drug problems in the U.S. [..]It should be clear that America's drug problem is homegrown and that any effort to combat it must be centered here. We must confront the real source of our problem, the demand for drugs. Frequently, American politicians prefer to criticize other countries that supply the American people with drugs rather than dealing with the demand for drugs in their native soil. As long as a demand exists for illegal drugs, a supply will exist to meet it.
An even bigger problem are illegal drugs "coming up through corrupt Mexico," he said. "People are driving across that border with tons, tons — hear me — tons of everything from byproducts for methamphetamines, to cocaine, to heroine."
"Mexico is a country that is an erstwhile democracy where they have the greatest disparity of wealth," Biden said. "It is one of the wealthiest countries in the hemisphere and because of a corrupt system that exists in Mexico, there is the 1 percent of the population at the top, a very small middle class and the rest is abject poverty."I agree with you Senator, but the same thing can be said about America too. Under the Republican led Congress and White House the top one percent of the population wealth has only increase while lower classes pay higher taxes, college tuition and health care rates has gone up, and wages still remain the same. So, rather than using tough sounding rhetoric in your long shot dreams to become President try offering big ideas for America problems.
Well, let me be fair and rewrite my title.
The president-elect of the Christian Coalition of America, which has long served as a model for activism for the religious right, has stepped down, saying the group resisted his efforts to broaden its agenda to include reducing poverty and fighting global warming. [..]The reason why reducing poverty does not play well in their base is because they are Republicans first and Christian second.
Over the last few years, Dr. Hunter, senior pastor of Northland Church in Longwood, Fla., has gained a reputation as an evangelical leader seeking to expand the agenda of conservative Christian activists from issues like abortion and same-sex marriage.
In a telephone interview, Dr. Hunter said that although Mrs. Combs had indicated that the organization also wanted to expand its priorities to include the issues that concerned him, the board backed away from such a commitment during a conference call last Tuesday. By the end of the call, Dr. Hunter and the coalition had decided to part amicably, according to both sides.
Dr. Hunter said, “When we really got down to it, they said: ‘This just isn’t for us. It won’t speak to our base, so we just can’t go there.’ ”
He hoped to include issues such as easing poverty and saving the environment.I have never been shy to defend my liberalism or my faith. I learn from my parents what was right and wrong, respect, equity, fairness, honesty and faith. I am a Catholic, and during religious classes and volunteer work at the Church I discover social justice. I seen whole family of homeless people who were outcast, minorities, unemployed, sick and needy. They were not looking for a handout, but for a help out of their troubles. My personal faith lead me to become a liberal. Yes, I do have disagreements with the Catholic Church over policy but my faith is still strong.
"These are issues that Jesus would want us to care about," Hunter said.
31 "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory.
32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.
35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,
36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'
37 "Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink?
38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you?
39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'
40 "The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'
41 "Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,
43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'
44 "They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?'
45 "He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'
46 "Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."
During a trip to weekend trip to Palm Beach, Florida Republican congressman Tom Tancredo of Colorado calls Miami a 'Third World country' in an interview with right wing online newsite WorldNetDaily.
Rep. Tom Tancredo, the leader of the anti-illegal immigration faction in the U.S. House, spent a recent weekend at The Breakers in Palm Beach.Basically, Tom Tancredo is saying that any city which has majority of 'brown people' living in it is a Third World country. The Cuban community should be fired up over this insult. Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen who represent Miami in Congress and who is also a Cuban-American should demand an apology. But, rather Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen invites Tom over for a friendly swim.
Ninety miles to the south, he found a symbol to bolster his belief that unfettered immigration is endangering the United States: Miami, he told a conservative online news site, ``has become a Third World country.'' [..]
''Look at what has happened to Miami,'' the WorldNetDaily quotes Tancredo as saying in an interview. ``It has become a Third World country. You just pick it up and take it and move it someplace. You would never know you're in the United States of America. You would certainly say you're in a Third World country.''
The remarks drew an instant rebuke from Miami Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who called Tancredo ''flat out wrong'' and extended an invitation for him to come and judge the city for himself.Tom Tancredo spokesman said, if Ros-Lehtinen's invitation includes ''a stay at a five-star beachfront resort, he may be willing to look beyond the inherent dangers that he had cited and visit Miami again".
''I invite my friend, Tom, to visit beautiful Miami, my hometown, and experience firsthand our hospitality,'' Ros-Lehtinen said. ``Come on down, Tom, the water's fine!''
No small feet: Brady makes Urlacher 'look bad'
It's one thing to have Tom Brady beat you with his arm, but, oh, the indignity of being beaten by his legs.I still can't believe it. But, Brian Urlacher missing a tackle did not lead to Bears losing the game. The blame goes to the offense lead by Rex Grossman. The Bears defense is great, but it can't overcome turnovers after turnovers. The Bears should have won this game.
The key play on New England's fourth-quarter touchdown drive, the one that produced the game-winning points, came on third-and-nine from the 25 when Brady took off running and made a nifty move to run past Brian Urlacher for an 11-yard gain before sliding to a stop with a first down at the 14. It was the second-longest run of the season for Brady, who scrambled for 22 yards in a victory at Cincinnati earlier this season.
''That was pretty cool,'' Brady said. ''At least I can tell my kids one day that I shook Brian Urlacher. They probably won't believe me.''
‘Twas the day after Thanksgiving and all ‘round the mall, the shoppers were pushing for the best parking of all.Accessible parking is an quality of life issue for most disabled people. I have been a paraplegic since suffer a injury to spinal cord in 1999. The Americans With Disabilities Act has made daily life more accessible. I am able to go to school, stores, movies, restaurants and so on without worrying if I am able to access the places I have to go. Some locations are better than others with their accessibility, but still I try my best to live an independent life.
If you will be one of those shoppers, know this: Someone might be checking your parking etiquette. And it won’t be the jolly guy with the big white beard.
Today the Secretary of State Police will launch their season-long effort to keep handicap parking spaces near shopping malls open for the people who need them.
Police warned her not to park in a fire lane, so Erika Coleman pulled into a nearby parking space designated for disabled drivers.You are right, there shouldn't be a problem. You should respect parking laws. The things people take for granted amazes me. If I could walk again, I would park in my driveway and walk to the store. I can not speak for every person who uses accessible parking but, my main concern is not parking the closest to the store rather it's having enough room to get out of the car. My quality of life considerably improved since I was able to drive again. Accessible Parking allows me to live a more independent life.
The 35-year-old Chicago woman isn't disabled -- and the parking space she chose Friday at Oakbrook Center was being watched by the same officers who had just told her to move her car. [..]
Coleman was more upset than remorseful after getting ticketed -- a citation that could cost her up to $500 and lead to her driver's license being suspended for a month.
"I was running in for a second,'' she said, explaining why she pulled into the handicapped parking spot. "I came here to get cigarettes. There shouldn't be a problem.''
A few things to be thankful for from Think Progress.
This Thanksgiving, progressives have a lot to be thankful for. Here’s our list:I hope everyone has a great day.
We’re thankful for our country’s troops.
We’re thankful America dumped the 109th Congress.
We’re thankful Rick Santorum will have more free time to find the WMD.
We’re thankful we don’t have to go to war with the Secretary of Defense we had.
We’re thankful for “red state values,” like protecting reproductive rights, supporting stem cell research, and rejecting discrimination.
We’re thankful Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK), who calls climate change the “greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people,” will no longer chair the Senate environmental committee.
We’re thankful that Matt Drudge does not rule our world.
We’re thankful Al Gore helped the country face an inconvenient truth.
We’re thankful Bill O’Reilly does not resort to name calling - well, besides labeling the ThinkProgress as “far left loons,” “kool-aid zombies,” “hired guns,” “vile,” “haters,” a “far left smear website,” and “a very well-oiled, effective character assassination machine.”
We’re thankful minimum wage ballot initiatives passed in six states.
We’re thankful the Dixie Chicks aren’t ready to make nice.
We’re thankful Ted Haggard bought the meth but never used it.
We’re thankful for the 100,000 readers who responded to our Tell the Truth About 9/11 campaign.
We’re thankful for “the Google” and “the email” (and the “series of tubes” that make them possible) — but not iPods, which are endangering our nation.
We’re thankful Maf54 isn’t online right now.
We’re thankful people send us Jack Abramoff’s email.
We’re thankful Keith Olbermann’s ratings are up and Bill O’Reilly’s ratings are down.
We’re thankful President Bush’s secret plan for Iraq is safe with Conrad Burns.
We’re thankful we won’t spend Thanksgiving turkey hunting with Dick Cheney.
We’re thankful the “Decider” only gets to make the decisions 789 more days.
And last but not least: We’re thankful to the Think Progress readers for their tips, energy and support.
Happy Thanksgiving! — The Think Progress Team.
.. but America is not at war.
Well over 95% of Americans, including Congress and White House staff, have no personal connection to this war--no relative or friend serving in Iraq. Over 99% of us have made no sacrifice for this war--we have not paid one more penny of taxes nor shed a drop of family blood. One of my military relatives thinks of it this way: "The American military is at war, but America is not at war."Go read the rest of Lawrence O'Donnell article at the Huffington Post.
Advocating war is easier when you and your family are not endangered by it. I've reached a Rangel-like breaking point with my TV pundit colleagues who championed the Iraq war and now say we can't leave even if we went there for the wrong reasons. For every one of them, I have a simple question: Why aren't you in Iraq? Or why did you avoid combat in your generation's war? The one unifying characteristic that all of us men in make-up on political chat shows share is fear of combat. Every one of us has done everything we can to avoid combat or even being fitted for a military uniform. Just like George Bush, Bill Clinton, and Dick Cheney, we are all combat cowards. It takes a very special kind of combat coward to advocate combat for others. It's the kind of thing that can get you as angry as Charlie Rangel.
Ok, we get it. You really, really hate gay people. I hope your hate of Homosexuals helps you get the Republican nomination for President.
It's simple, but President of United States and this conservatives allies continue to call the Democratic Party the 'Democrat' Party out of disrespect.
If he wanted to, President Bush could change the tone in Washington with a single syllable: He could just say "ic." That is, he could stop referring to the opposition as the "Democrat Party" and call the other side, as it prefers, the Democratic Party.There is no level of childishness conservatives won't go to insult the Democratic Party. It is obnoxious not to add the 'ic' and these people are supposedly the adults in the room.
The derisive use of "Democrat" in this way was a Bush staple during the recent campaign. "There are people in the Democrat Party who think they can spend your money far better than you can," he would say in his stump speech, or, "Raising taxes is a Democrat idea of growing the economy," or, "However they put it, the Democrat approach in Iraq comes down to this: The terrorists win and America loses." [..]
Democrat Party was used, pardon the phrase, liberally by Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy. According to the Columbia Guide to Standard American English, " Democrat as an adjective is still sometimes used by some twentieth-century Republicans as a campaign tool but was used with particular virulence" by McCarthy, "who sought by repeatedly calling it the Democrat party to deny it any possible benefit of the suggestion that it might also be democratic." [..]
But Democrat-as-epithet has seen its fullest flowering -- on talk radio, among congressional leaders and, more than with any of his predecessors, from the president himself -- during the recent Republican heyday. As Hendrik Hertzberg pointed out in the New Yorker in August, the conservative Web site NewsMax.com takes pains to scrub Associated Press copy "to de-'ic' references" to the party.
Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), explaining why Democrats won't push to impeach President Bush when they take control of Congress next year.
"Two words: Dick Cheney."The Senator makes a good point.
Gov picks Duckworth for Veterans Affairs
Gov. Blagojevich is starting his second term making a smart choice for a top job. He's tapping wounded Iraq war vet Tammy Duckworth to be the new director of the Illinois Veterans' Affairs Department.It is a good more for both.
"I thought it was a natural fit for me and my background," Duckworth told me. [..]
Taking over the Veterans' Affairs Department was an easy call given "my commitment to veterans and health care issues," said Duckworth.
"I just wanted to stay in public service," said Duckworth.
She will replace Roy Dolgos, who will be moving over to the Transportation Department. Duckworth's appointment to the $102,000-a-year post is effective Dec. 15 and is subject to state Senate confirmation.
It takes a lot of courage to admit that you personally made a mistake. That your actions and rhetoric do have real world consequence. Senator Barack Obama needs to apologizes not to the American public, or the Democratic Party, or to the great people of Illinois or to the Bloggers, but to one man. The junior Senator of Illinois has to be held accountable for this actions.
Two years ago I was a full-time newspaper reporter in Illinois covering Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.Senator Barack Obama made a fool out of Nicklaus Lovelady in front of a girl he was trying to holler at. Totally messing up this game.
I had the looks, I had the charm and I had my eye on this pretty young thing who was doing an internship for a competing paper.
It took me nearly two months of running into each other at various news events before I worked up the nerve to begin talking to her.
And then Obama shows up.
The day Obama came, there was a huge press conference at the university’s student center with about 100 people inside the conference room and hundreds more viewing the conference on a big screen in the lobby.Now, that ugly. How could you do that to a guy, Barack?
Obama did his thing, and at the end there was segment for questions by the media.
After about five questions from different television and newspaper reporters, I stood up to ask mine.
“Wait a minute son, this is for professional media only,” Obama said to me.
“What do you mean? I work for the local paper,” I said with a crackling nervous voice.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I thought you were a college student. You have such a baby face,” he said with an unremorseful grin.
At that point everyone in the room turned to look at me and laugh. The 800 people in the lobby laughed as my face was projected on the big screen.
Remembered that girl who I was trying to get with, well she was sitting next to me and guess what she was doing?
Everyone was laughing except me.
The next time I saw that young lady was at another press conference, but this time she was acting as if she never knew me. I think I saw her maybe two more times and each time, it was the cold shoulder.
Town makes it illegal to fly a foreign flag
This is where we've arrived in this country: You have the constitutional right to burn an American flag, but you can get into trouble for simply flying a foreign one.Idiotic.
At least you can in the 30,000-person town of Pahrump, Nevada, which is close to Las Vegas and even closer to stepping over the line with an idiotic, intolerant and insulting ban on foreign (read: Mexican) flags. The town council voted last week, 3-2, to approve an ordinance that makes it illegal to display a foreign flag -- unless an American flag is flown above it. Scofflaws face a $50 fine and 30 hours of community service.
Pahrump resident Michael Miraglia proposed the ban because, he said, he got upset when he saw immigrant activists marching through U.S. cities last spring, waving Mexican flags. Mr. Miraglia told USA Today that he was especially miffed that "we had Mexican restaurants closed that day."
So that's what started all this -- the fact that some guy couldn't get his burrito fix. It's our cultural schizophrenia. Americans love Mexican food, even if they don't always love Mexicans. They never ask themselves: If they succeed in getting rid of all the Mexicans -- as some would, no doubt, like to do -- who's going to make the food? [..]
What gives someone the right to wave a foreign flag anyway? Answer: The First Amendment. Bans like the one in Pahrump are almost certainly unlawful and unconstitutional, leaving one to wonder, about Mr. Miraglia and the Pahrump Town Council, what part of illegal don't they understand?
What I don't understand is how immigration restrictionists can still insist, with a straight face, that the immigration debate and its offshoots haven't become anti-Mexican. When people brush aside distinctions of legal versus illegal immigrants and start banning the Mexican flag, what else do you call it?
As my friends in Texas say, I may have been born at night -- but I wasn't born last night.
At moments like this, I barely recognize my own country. Americans confronted slavery, the Great Depression, the Third Reich, and racial injustice here at home. Now some of us tremble at the sight of a piece of cloth. How sad. We're a bigger people than that. Even if some of us, now and then, tend to forget it.
GamePolitics.com caught this gem from the Radio Factor with Bill O’ReillySo, who joining Bill O’Reilly campaign to protect America by ban those evil iPods?I don’t own an iPod. I would never wear an iPod… If this is your primary focus in life - the machines… it’s going to have a staggeringly negative effect, all of this, for America… did you ever talk to these computer geeks? I mean, can you carry on a conversation with them? …I really fear for the United States because, believe me, the jihadists? They’re not playing the video games. They’re killing real people over there.
There is a movement to make a group of people second class citizens. Mexicans-Americans is the central target of this mobilization to deny U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants their civil rights in order to withhold the benefits of American citizenship. The 14th Amendment formally defines citizenship and requires the states to provide civil rights to all persons born or naturalized in the United States. Texas Republicans objective is to rewrite the provisions in Section 1 of the 14 Amendment in which U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants qualify for citizenship.
With the Democrats in charge in Washington, conservatives in Texas are wasting no time on a pity party. Republicans, after all, are still in the majority here, controlling every statewide office and the Legislature as well as the top courts. To press that advantage, conservatives plan to put their imprint next year on a variety of issues ranging from abortion to school vouchers. Their biggest push by far, however, will be passage of a host of bills dealing with illegal immigrants, including one that just might challenge the 14th Amendment, which defines citizenship and requires states to provide civil rights to anyone born on U.S. soil. [..]If the most extreme elements of legislation advance by conservatives becomes law, a vast group of people would become second class citizen overnight. Countless of number illegal immigrants along with their children might also become homeless.
Republicans began trooping into the state Capitol with stacks of bills aimed at cutting off benefits to illegal aliens, taxing their remittances south of the border, and requiring proof of citizenship at the voting booth. The harshest bill would deny welfare and other benefits even to the U.S.-born children of illegal aliens — rights supposedly given them under the 14th Amendment.
The opening salvo in the fight was made this week by Farmers Branch, a suburb of Dallas which is nearly 40% Hispanic. Despite protests in the streets and threats of lawsuits and boycotts, the city council voted to make English the official language and fine landlords who rent to illegal immigrants.If the 14th Amendment is rewritten solely by conservatives, I would lose the my vote due to the fact my parents are illegal immigrants, the right to received any benefits of American citizenship. I would in affect become a second class American citizen in my home country. I would have to live in the dark shadows of American life. The protection of civil rights would no longer apply to me.
Jonathan Singer over at MyDD writes about The Sorry Slate of Republican Presidential Candidates.
Regardless of John McCain moves further and further to the right, his campaign to woo the conservative base of the Republican Party (many of whom do not, cannot and will not trust the Arizona Senator) may ultimately prove futile, leaving a rather gaping opening in the race for the 2008 GOP presidential nomination. Can Rudy Giuliani, who has yet to face real scrutiny for his positions, his lifestyle choices and his post-9/11 business deals, actually emerge as the party nominee? Can Mitt Romney, who was until recently pro-choice and who is running as a non-Protestant in a party that has never nominated a non-Protestant, win? How about Newt Gingrich, who still maintains negative ratings far in excess of his positive ratings? Perhaps Mike Huckabee, who has come under ethics scrutiny of late as a result of his online gift registry, or Sam Brownback, who appears to be even more conservative than Rick Santorum (as if such a thing were possible)? Condi? Come on.Go read the rest.
The current slate of candidates for the Republican presidential nomination is among the sorriest of American history. In fact it's difficult for me to think of a weaker group of candidates for either of the major party's nomination (I think you may have to go back to the race for the Democratic nomination in 1904 to find such a lackluster list -- and that was caused, at least in part, by the strength of then-incumbent President Theodore Roosevelt). The apparent addition of Tommy Thompson to the list does not do much, if anything, to mitigate this situation.
Hendry lands top free agent as Soriano agrees in principle to 8-year, $136M deal.
Cubs general manager Jim Hendry has reeled in the biggest fish in baseball's free-agent pond at an unprecedented total price tag for the franchise.Jay Mariotti
Alfonso Soriano, who was expected to get offers from a host of teams, has agreed in principle to a multiyear contract worth a potential $136 million over eight seasons. The deal would make Soriano, 30, the second-highest-paid player in team history and one of the highest-paid in baseball.
An average annual salary of $17 million would come close to the four-year, $72 million contract ($18 million average) that the Cubs gave Sammy Sosa in 2001. And it would exceed the five-year, $73 million package given last week to third baseman Aramis Ramirez and the five-year, $65 million package given last season to first baseman Derrek Lee. Soriano made $10 million last season.
I really don't care if Alfonso Soriano turns 31 in a few weeks, which might make him 35 in Latin years and 43 when his contract expires. Nor do I care that the next owners of the Cubs, whoever they are, might reach for vomit bags upon hearing the Tribune Co. paid a dry-heave-inducing $136 million for one ballplayer.Indeed.
What I care about is that the unlovable losers, for once in their lives, identified the player of their dreams and didn't finish second, third, fifth or 10th in the bidding war. Heavens to Jim Spendry, they threw a stunning sum of money at baseball's most unique everyday weapon and actually won the prize, meaning the 40-40-40 man will be slugging his home runs, stealing his bases and swatting his doubles from the leadoff hole at a suddenly more beautiful Wrigley Field.
Bears get the job done.
It was not necessarily an artistic success, but it was a success all the same, which is the important thing for the Bears.An other victory Monday for the Chicago Bears. The game was not pretty, but it's a win. Bring on the New England Patriots.
Their 10-0 victory over the New York Jets on Sunday put them at 9-1 and, with Green Bay and Minnesota losing, just a victory away from clinching at least a tie for the NFC North title.
With the Jets running what the visitors dubbed the "muddle huddle" offense of frequent substitutions into a no-huddle system, the Bears shook off a bumpy 0-0 first half.
They took advantage of New York mistakes—by players and coaches—for a field goal in the third quarter and a touchdown in the fourth while outgaining the Jets 115-61 in the final quarter, 204-108 in the second half.
"It seems like we have been a second-half team for a while," said Bears coach Lovie Smith, whose team is 23-1 when leading after three quarters.
Fifty-seven of the Bears' yards came on a touchdown pass from Rex Grossman to Mark Bradley, and Thomas Jones, Cedric Benson and the offensive line pounded the Jets for 173 yards, or 4.9 yards per run.
The struggle to end segregation in the public schools in America still continues to this day. An elementary school principal named Teresa Parker in Texas divided white children from minority children by assigning them to classrooms based on race in order to appease affluent white parents.
For years, it was an open secret at North Dallas' Preston Hollow Elementary School: Even though the school was overwhelmingly Hispanic and black, white parents could get their children into all-white classes. And once placed, the students would have little interaction with the rest of the students.Mrs. Teresa Parker the principal of North Dallas' Preston Hollow Elementary School needs to be unemployed and never again be put in a position of power.
The result, a federal judge has ruled, was that principal Teresa Parker "was, in effect, operating, at taxpayer's expense, a private school for Anglo children within a public school that was predominantly minority."
Judge Sam Lindsay's opinion paints an unflattering picture of the elementary school and a principal who was so desperate to appease the school's affluent white parents that she turned back the clock on school desegregation 50 years.
In April, Hispanic parents sued, claiming illegal segregation. The three-week trial concluded in late August. On Thursday, Judge Lindsay declared that the school's principal violated the rights of minority children by assigning them to classrooms based on race.
The judge ordered Mrs. Parker to pay $20,200 to Lucrecia Mayorga Santamaría, the lone named plaintiff, who sued on behalf of her three children.
Although the judge did not find the Dallas school district liable for Mrs. Parker's actions, he strongly criticized DISD administrators for being "asleep at the wheel."
The judge also took exception to Mrs. Parker's apparent unwillingness to cooperate with the court. At one point during the trial, the judge noted, Mrs. Parker testified that she didn't know whether Preston Hollow is a predominantly white neighborhood.Add the school district's attorneys, District spokesman Celso Martinez and Superintendent Michael Hinojosa to list of people who have to be unemployed also. The Superintendent has to be held accountable for this apathy and this total disregard of what is happening under this supervision.
"The court finds it astounding that Principal Parker, who has served at Preston Hollow for five years, would testify that she knows nothing about the ethnic makeup of the immediate neighborhood surrounding her school."
The school's attendance zone is mostly north of Northwest Highway, east of Preston Road, south of Royal Lane, and just east of North Central Expressway. It includes affluent, mostly white single-family homes, as well as middle-class homes and apartments that are predominantly minority.
The judge also had sharp words for the district's attorneys, who argued that segregation would cause no harm to the minority students because their teachers used the same curriculum as those teaching white students.
"The court is baffled that in this day and age, that [DISD relied] on what is, essentially, a 'separate but equal' argument," the judge wrote.
Mr. Martinez, the district spokesman, said the district doesn't believe Mrs. Parker was segregating students, but he acknowledged that classrooms at the school need to be better integrated.
Judge Lindsay also criticized Meg Bittner, the school's PTA president, who wanted to lure more affluent white families out of private schools and back to Preston Hollow.Disgusting.
More white families would result in a healthier PTA, she testified, bigger fundraisers and, ultimately, more money for the school. The best way to lure back white families, teachers and others testified, was to put white children together in the same classrooms.
Teacher Janet Leon told the court that "neighborhood classes" were predominantly made up of white students because "the people who live in the Preston Hollow neighborhood, who are the majority being white, would want their children grouped together."
To aid in the recruitment of more affluent whites, the school's PTA created a brochure for parents that featured almost all white students. Hispanic parents had shown up at the school the day photos were being taken for the brochure, but the principal blocked their entry into the classroom where the photos were being taken, the judge's ruling states.
Additionally, the PTA, in conjunction with the school, held separate open houses and kindergarten recruitments for white parents. And when PTA members gave prospective parents tours of the school, they were never taken down the "Hispanic halls" where the minority classes were housed, teachers testified.
Good Riddance To The Gingrichites
Really, it's just a simple thesis: The men who ran the Republican Party in the House of Representatives for the past 12 years were a group of weirdos. [..]Go read the rest of Dick Meyer, the editorial director of CBSNews, article.
Politicians in this country get a bad rap. For the most part, they are like any high-achieving group in America, with roughly the same distribution of pathologies and virtues. But the leaders of the GOP House didn't fit the personality profile of American politicians, and they didn't deviate in a good way. It was the Chess Club on steroids.
The iconic figures of this era were Newt Gingrich, Richard Armey and Tom Delay. They were zealous advocates of free markets, low taxes and the pursuit of wealth; they were hawks and often bellicose; they were brutal critics of big government.
Yet none of these guys had success in capitalism. None made any real money before coming to Congress. None of them spent a day in uniform. And they all spent the bulk of their adult careers getting paychecks from the big government they claimed to despise.
Obama will visit evangelical megachurch on World AIDS Day
WASHINGTON - Like many fellow Democratic politicians, Sen. Barack Obama is no stranger to the pulpit.The global fight against AIDS and HIV should not be a partisan issue. If Senator Barack Obama, progressives and evangelicals find a common cause to join in I'm all for it.
But in December, Obama will go where few progressive Democrats usually venture - to a large, conservative evangelical church that boasts a Sunday attendance of more than 20,000 people.
Even more unusual is that he'll attend at the invitation of megachurch Pastor Rick Warren, evangelical icon and author of the popular Christian book "The Purpose-Driven Life."
Aides to Obama say he will appear at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., on Dec. 1, World AIDS Day, drawing attention to the kind of issue the senator from Illinois says should unite all people of faith, regardless of their particular religion.
"Sen. Obama has a deep respect for Mr. Warren's commitment to fighting AIDS and poverty," said Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor. "They met in January of 2006 while Mr. Warren was in Washington and have become friends, speaking on the phone with some regularity."
While he was working on his latest book, "The Audacity of Hope," Obama asked Warren to help by reading one of his draft chapters. Warren issued the invitation to Obama to speak at the church next month.
That Friday's messages will focus on AIDS and HIV, a key area of ministry for Saddleback Church. While many conservative Christians have shied away from AIDS work because of their discomfort with its connections to premarital sex and homosexuality, Warren and his wife, church co-founder Kay Warren, have been vocal advocates for patients living with the disease.
Oh Where, Oh Where has my “White rednecks” gone?
“White rednecks” who “didn’t show up to vote for us” partly cost GOPers their cong. majorities, Rep. Adam Putnam (R-FL) told fellow Republicans today. And Putnam, seeking the post of GOP conference chair, chided ex-Chair J.C. Watts (R-OK) for ruining the conference’s ability to serve its members.If a Democrat would have said this conservatives along with their allies in the media would be having a bloodily field day calling Democrat racist, out of touch liberals and so on. The GOP in '08 is going more to the hard right to appease their rabid base. Get ready for more GAYS,GUNS,GOD rhetoric from the Grand Old Party, it's what they do best.
Three Republicans in the room independently confirmed to the Hotline the substance and context of Putnam’s remarks. But Putnam’s chief of staff insists that the remarks were taken out of context.
Examining the 2006 midterms, Putnam blamed the GOP defeat on “the independent vote, the women vote, the suburban vote.” He said that “heck, even the white rednecks who go to church on Sunday didn't come out to vote for us.”
Democrats Pick Pelosi, Hoyer as Leaders
Moments after electing Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as Speaker of the House, Democrats chose Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) as their new House majority leader, the No. 2 leadership post, over Rep. John Murtha (D-PA), the AP reports.Amen.
The final vote, 149 to 86, wasn't even close.
After making her case for Murtha and losing, Hotline On Call says Pelosi sought unity among Democrats with this remark: "We've had our debate. We've had our disagremeents in that room. Now, that is over. As we say in church, let their be peace on earth and let it begin with us."
Republican senator James M. Inhofe top press aide goes off the deep end and attacks incoming Chairman of Environment and Public Works Committee senator Boxer for planning to hold global warming hearings.
Congressional Republicans who have handled environmental policy for the past decade say they worry the new Democratic majority will use its power to pursue a "radical" agenda that will hurt businesses.The Environment and Public Works Committee goes from senator James M. Inhofe who was a zero score from The League of Conservation Voters to senator Boxer who has 100% score and believes in scientists rather then fiction.
Republicans warn of endless hearings on global warming that require sworn testimony, new regulations on businesses, and investigations meant to embarrass the Bush administration.
They say future environmental panels will be "radical" and "extreme," especially in the Senate with California Democrat Barbara Boxer as the incoming chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee.
"There's a lot of genuine concern we're going to start dragging in oil companies, utilities and manufacturers and start treating them like criminals," said a Republican staff member of the Senate panel. "She's pretty out there."
But Mrs. Boxer and others say outgoing Republican Chairman James M. Inhofe -- who calls global warming a "hoax" -- is the one with views outside the mainstream.
Mr. Inhofe's top press aide said at a climate change conference in Kenya this week that global warming skeptics have been "demonized."
Inhofe rejects a wide scientific consensus that human use of fossil fuels is largely responsible for catastrophic climate change, calling it "the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people." He's accused environmental activists of exploiting people's fears to raise money. And he's blocked legislation aimed at curbing global warming.
Boxer said Tuesday that starting in January, her priority will be to begin "a very long process of extensive hearings" on global warming.One of the many benefits of Democrats holding the majority in the Senate, actual committee hearings for the American people and the environment rather for big business.
"I think there ought to be a global-warming bill that looks at all the contributors to carbon-dioxide emissions," she said. She cited California's legislation requiring automakers to reduce emissions as "an excellent role model."
Boxer also wants to boost the cleanup of Superfund toxic-waste sites by reinstating "polluter pays" fines, which lapsed under the Bush administration, and increase oversight of the Environmental Protection Agency.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate's most vocal global warming skeptic, James Inhofe, on Thursday dismissed a U.N. meeting on climate change as "a brainwashing session."
Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican who will step down as chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee in January, told a news conference, "The idea that the science (on global warming) is settled is altogether wrong."
Conservative senator John '08 McCain picks up more racist support for this Presidential bid.
G.O.P. Senators said they were eager to have Lott back in the leadership, as he's known as a clever back-room dealer and tactician on the Senate floor, which operates through a bizarre, complicated rules that at times outgoing Majority Leader Bill Frist didn't seem to understand. "He's the most effective leader I know," said Arizona's John McCain, who has won Lott's support for his likely presidential bid. Minnesota's Norm Coleman called Lott "the master of the Senate."There is no filthy sewer John '08 McCain won't travel to become President, this man is shameless.
On the November 14 edition of his CNN Headline News program,Glenn Beck interviewed Rep.-elect Keith Ellison (D-MN), who became the first Muslim ever elected to Congress on November 7, and asked Ellison if he could "have five minutes here where we're just politically incorrect and I play the cards up on the table." After Ellison agreed, Beck said: "I have been nervous about this interview with you, because what I feel like saying is, 'Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies.' " Beck added: "I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way."Why does this fool have a still have a televsion show?BECK: OK. No offense, and I know Muslims. I like Muslims. I've been to mosques. I really don't believe that Islam is a religion of evil. I -- you know, I think it's being hijacked, quite frankly.
With that being said, you are a Democrat. You are saying, "Let's cut and run." And I have to tell you, I have been nervous about this interview with you, because what I feel like saying is, "Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies."
And I know you're not. I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way.
ELLISON: Well, let me tell you, the people of the Fifth Congressional District know that I have a deep love and affection for my country. There's no one who is more patriotic than I am. And so, you know, I don't need to -- need to prove my patriotic stripes.
Keith Ellison, the first Muslim ever elected to Congress, hasn't even taken office yet, but he already appears to be charting his own route in Congress. The Associated Press reports that Ellison skipped a swanky private White House reception for other freshman Congressman hosted by President Bush -- and went to a reception for the AFL-CIO instead. "It wasn't even a close call," Ellison says. "Maybe one day I'll get to meet the president. He's the president, and I respect him in his role as the president, but I have exceedingly sharp differences with him on a policy level." Somehow we doubt that Ellison's complete lack of interest in hobnobbing with Bush will make him any more popular with his many conservative critics.Good move.
REPUBLICANS AND LATINOS....Here's the opening sentence of this morning's LA Times story about the appointment of Mel Martinez to head the Republican National Committee:I agree with Kevin Drum, the Republican Party has lost the Latino vote. The next likely Republican candidate for President is going to come from the fence-building, immigrant-bashing, English-only wing of the GOP, which would lead to the Democratic Party winning about 70% of the Latinos vote. The lesson of the '06 election is completely lost on the Republican Party, they are going to move further to the hard right and become a regional, south-based Party of White men.Question: does this make any sense? My experience is heavily colored by local California politics, but that experience suggests that Bush and Rove are whistling past the graveyard. Long story short, Republican Governor Pete Wilson barnstormed the state in 1994 in favor of Proposition 187, a measure that heavily restricted state services for illegal immigrants. It passed handily (though a judge later threw out most of it), but the effect on the California GOP was catastrophic: Latinos began turning out more heavily, and efforts to bring them into the Republican fold cratered. It's not the only reason California has been so reliably liberal ever since, but it's a big part of it.
President Bush's decision to back Sen. Mel Martinez to help lead the Republican Party, a move intended to appeal to disaffected Latino voters....
If national politics works the same way, the fence-building, immigrant-bashing, English-only rhetoric from the paleo-conservative wing of the Republican Party this year has dealt it a permanent blow among Latinos, and nothing they can do is going to reverse this in the near term.
So: Is the Times just regurgitating conventional wisdom about Martinez? Or do Rove and Bush not understand just how hopeless their position is? Or is the California experience not necessarily the template for the entire country?
My guess is #2. I think the Republican Party has lost the Latino vote for a generation, but Bush and Rove aren't yet willing to admit it. It's probably not the only thing they're in denial over.
Katherine Harris is going to expose how Florida GOP leadership, former campaign staffers and the 'liberal media' conspired to undermine her coronation to the United States Senate in a 'tell-all' book.
The Sarasota congresswoman, who grabbed the national spotlight during Florida's disputed vote count in the 2000 election, is far behind Sen. Bill Nelson in the polls and has weathered a rocky and controversial campaign.Please, do not worry about Katherine Harris. She has many options in front of her, like run for a Sarasota County seat.
Harris wouldn't talk details at a campaign appearance Friday, but she was quoted Friday in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune as saying it would be a "tell-all" book about the conspiracy to undermine her Senate bid.
"You'll have to wait and read it," she said. In the past, Harris has blamed the "party elite," the media and disgruntled staffers for her campaign problems.
Harris' future remains uncertain. After a stint in the Florida Senate, a term as elected secretary of state - the office she held when she certified Florida's votes for President Bush in the 2000 recount - and two terms in Congress, Harris might be done.Any suggestions on a name for her 'tell-all' book?
"Never say never, but I would tend to think so," Ingram said. "She's done a lot of damage to herself and her reputation. How do you fix that? You have to start by admitting you have a problem, and I don't think Katherine even recognizes she has a problem."
Paulson said Harris would likely have to start at the bottom - perhaps a Sarasota County seat - and try to rebuild her severely damaged credibility. Jewett suggested she might be viable again running for the Legislature or her old congressional seat someday, but can't see her ever being elected to statewide office.
Trent Lott is back.
In a 25-24 vote, the Senate Republican caucus has elected Trent Lott (R-MS) as Minority Whip, the #2 minority position in the Senate. As expected, Mitch McConnell (R-KY) was elected Senate Minority Leader. Lott, who defeated Lamar Alexander (R-TN), resigned his post as Minority Leader in 2002 after he said the United States would have avoided “all these problems” if then-segregationist Strom Thurmond had been elected president in 1948.Grand Old Party stays true to it's racist base.
Former President Bush Blames ‘Bloggers’ for ‘Ugly’ Political Climate
GRETA: Why do you think it’s gotten so adversarial? Tonight is literacy. Everybody comes in from all different sides and wants to help. It seems like oftentimes in Washington, you know, on something we all want to work towards it’s not necessarily so civilized. It’s not so pleasant.I guess Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage and Michelle Malkin is not responsible for the ugliness in the political climate in H.W. Bush world.
H.W. BUSH: It’s true but that’s not new really. I mean, you go back in history and you’ll find that there was always adversarial politics. There was always gut fighting. And it’s probably a little worse now given the electronic media and the bloggers and all these kinds of things. But I don’t despair about it. I think things — there is a pendulum at work at times so you swing away from the incivility back to more normal climate.
Giuliani Moves Toward White House Bid
WASHINGTON -- The man once dubbed "America's mayor" has taken the first step toward becoming America's next president.Atrios
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a Republican moderate who achieved near-mythic popularity for his handling of the Sept. 11 attacks, filed papers Friday in New York to create the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Exploratory Committee Inc. A copy of the document was obtained by The Associated Press.
As with McCain, the media is Giuiliani's base - I think Chris Matthews has a bigger mancrush on him than he does on either McCain or Bush - so Rudy will get an immense amount of free media attention. He's also an utterly unprincipled man, so we can see him throwing his old positions - and old friends and roommates - under the bus as he proves he can hate the gay as much as the next Republican candidate for president.Josh Marshall
He won't win, but he might get enough attention to grab a bunch of the McCain vote. Then hello candidate Brownback!
Perhaps this is something of an existential question. But do we really have to pretend that Rudy Giuliani has more than a snowball's chance in hell of getting the Republican presidential nomination? Or can we all just stipulate that a multiple adulterer, who supports gay civil rights and choice, has deep and on-going ties to mobbed-up and now-disgraced Police boss Bernie Kerik, has a largely unscrutinized (outside of New York) resume, and had the bright idea of locating the NYC disaster center in the already-once-bombed World Trade Center probably will have some rough sledding in Republican primaries?How long will it take John '08 McCain or any other Republican use pictures of Rudy '08 Giuliani in drag for their political benefit?
Many years later after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his 'I Have a Dream' speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and called for freedom for every American, the civil rights leader and the cause of reaching the 'Promised Land' will finally have it's place in the Nation Capital.
And at some point, I know that one of my daughters will ask, perhaps my youngest, will ask, "Daddy, why is this monument here? What did this man do?"Please, go and read the rest.
How might I answer them? Unlike the others commemorated in this place, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was not a president of the United States - at no time in his life did he hold public office. He was not a hero of foreign wars. He never had much money, and he while he lived he was reviled at least as much as he was celebrated. By his own accounts, he was a man frequently racked with doubt, a man not without flaws, a man who, like Moses before him, more than once questioned why he had been chosen for so arduous a task - the task of leading a people to freedom, the task of healing the festering wounds of a nation's original sin.
And yet lead a nation he did. Through words he gave voice to the voiceless. Through deeds he gave courage to the faint of heart. By dint of vision, and determination, and most of all faith in the redeeming power of love, he endured the humiliation of arrest, the loneliness of a prison cell, the constant threats to his life, until he finally inspired a nation to transform itself, and begin to live up to the meaning of its creed.
Like Moses before him, he would never live to see the Promised Land. But from the mountain top, he pointed the way for us - a land no longer torn asunder with racial hatred and ethnic strife, a land that measured itself by how it treats the least of these, a land in which strength is defined not simply by the capacity to wage war but by the determination to forge peace - a land in which all of God's children might come together in a spirit of brotherhood.
We have not yet arrived at this longed for place. For all the progress we have made, there are times when the land of our dreams recedes from us - when we are lost, wandering spirits, content with our suspicions and our angers, our long-held grudges and petty disputes, our frantic diversions and tribal allegiances.
And yet, by erecting this monument, we are reminded that this different, better place beckons us, and that we will find it not across distant hills or within some hidden valley, but rather we will find it somewhere in our hearts.
In the Book of Micah, Chapter 6, verse 8, the prophet says that God has already told us what is good.
"What doth the Lord require of thee, the verse tells us, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"
The man we honor today did what God required. In the end, that is what I will tell my daughters - I will leave it to their teachers and their history books to tell them the rest. As Dr. King asked to be remembered, I will tell them that this man gave his life serving others. I will tell them that this man tried to love somebody. I will tell them that because he did these things, they live today with the freedom God intended, their citizenship unquestioned, their dreams unbounded. And I will tell them that they too can love. That they too can serve. And that each generation is beckoned anew, to fight for what is right, and strive for what is just, and to find within itself the spirit, the sense of purpose, that can remake a nation and transform a world. Thank you very much.
Mary Matalin, Ed Gillespie and Dick Wadhams all join in Geroge Allen Senate Campaign to get an early start towards a Presidental run in 2008. Mary Matalin said of the Senator, "We're in the era of authenticity. He's serious, but he's comfortable. He doesn't get rattled. He doesn't tap dance." It seem Mary Matlin is wrong on all accounts, Geroge Allen is not going to bring back the "Gipper".
MATTHEWS: Let me ask you this. The macaca thing, I think that`s what started all this. ...Ex-RNC Cheif Ed Gillespie has to make a fool out himself and use Jadda the hut defenses for Senator Allen. Mary Matalin who is never scared to make a fool out herself showed on unserious she and Senator Allen really are.
How do you explain that? Coming up with a word used as an anti-black term in North Africa years ago. ... He just made up a word that we know can be traced back to North Africa where his mother came from? Do you believe that, that he just made up the word macaca out of nowhere?
GILLESPIE: Well I know that he calls his finance director Jabba. I don't know why, and I don't know where that comes from.
MATTHEWS: Jabba the Hut.
Allen's campaign unearthed an insensitive article from 1979 about women serving in the military. There was a fair point to be made here, but Matalin's appearance on MSNBC in late October reeked of desperation:The man who would be the next Karl Rove took the biggest downfall in the cause of Senator Allen, Dick Wadhams.TUCKER CARLSON: Wait a second, Mary. ... [T]he Allen campaign has beat Jim Webb over the head with this piece he wrote. ...Watching this interview, it's hard not to think that Matalin longs for her old job.
MATALIN: ... [W]hat was offensive about that was the language that was used. You know me, Tucker--I am no raving feminist here. But any man that ever says, in any context, or professes to know something about any woman`s horny dreams, is not somebody that I want representing me or even in the same room with me. ...
CARLSON: But wait a second, Mary. Wait, hold on. You just said a second ago, that kind of loose talk, both candidates in this race, as you know, have been guilty of loose talk, and it`s been my position from day one that loose talk is no measure of anybody, any candidate in this race certainly. You ought to judge people on what they believe, and Jim Webb, I thought, made a pretty cogent case for why women ought not to serve in combat. And I just hate to see George Allen attacking him from the left, which is what he's been doing.
MATALIN: You know, this is obviously no longer a current issue. The people who are voting in this race want to vote on current issues. This is a state that when, not too long ago, when we all moved here, the largest export was tobacco. Today, it's computer chips. Why? George Allen.
But the man most damaged by Allen's spectacular implosion isn't Gillespie, Matalin, or possibly even Allen himself (who will surely find a lucrative way to spend his days). It is Campaign Manager Dick Wadhams, who, for a long time, was thought to be the next Karl Rove. Slate called him Rove's "heir apparent," a reference to both his political skill (he engineered John Thune's stunning upset of Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle in South Dakota, and he was instrumental in the rise of Colorado Governor Bill Owens) and his Rove-like classiness (Wadhams: "There's nothing wrong with going negative. Staying positive is a disservice to the voters.").Go read the rest of Isaac Chotiner article in the New Republic.
But, after he enlisted with Allen, he lost his mojo. The campaign did not respond quickly or cogently to adversity, and it waited too long to show contrition for the macaca incident. And the decision to go after Webb for the racy content in his novels was a political blunder that made Allen appear puny and pathetic. The Denver Post, which had previously chronicled Wadhams's rise through Colorado politics, said he seemed to be "adrift in a cyclone." Wadhams, erstwhile golden boy, is now the aide who steered a once-sure-thing to defeat.
Devin Hester 108-yard return for a touchdown:
''I probably would've downed it if I saw defenders coming at me full speed,'' Hester said. ''But it seemed like all of them were just kind of walking off the field like the play was over, and I decided to take it out.''
Hester took his sweet time making that decision. But once he burst out of the back of the end zone and found a wall of blockers on the right sideline, he put the game away in no time at all with a 108-yard return for a touchdown.
It was deja vu for Nathan Vasher, who sent his helmet and jersey to the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, after scoring a 108-yard touchdown against San Francisco almost exactly a year earlier (Nov. 13, 2005). Vasher loved seeing Hester tie his record for the longest touchdown in NFL history.
''Same team, same hesitation, everything,'' Vasher said. ''I'm so excited for him. I know how that can really spark a game and give us a chance to win. Just seeing the way he battled [back from a fumble] last week, it shows how great an athlete he is and what a great addition he is to our team.''
.. did not vote for you.
Randy Wooten, candidate for mayor of Waldenburg, Ark., received NO votes in the election, yet he knows he voted for himself, according to AP:Wooten got the news from his wife, Roxanne, who went to City Hall on Wednesday to see the election results.Wooten also says several people around town say they voted for him, so he's wrestling with whether it's worth going to the trouble of obtaining a court order to open the electronic voting machine to check the totals.
"She saw my name with zero votes by it. She came home and asked me if I had voted for myself or not. I told her I did," said Wooten, owner of a local bar.
But here's my question: When his wife came in and said he hadn't received a vote and had to ask him if he'd at least voted for himself, didn't that tip him off that she hadn't voted for him?
.. the Senator speaks the truth.
"Two days after losing a bid for a second term in an election seen as a referendum on President Bush and the Republican Party, Sen. Lincoln Chafee said he was unsure whether he'd remain a Republican," the AP reports.I do not feel sorry for Senator Lincoln Chafee. He made his bed, now it is time to sleep in it. The Republican party left him behind, but he still voted for it's leadership. I do respect the Senator. Unlike Senator Holy Joe, he stayed loyal to the party of this father which lead to his defeat.
When asked whether he felt that his loss may have helped the country by switching control of power in Congress, he replied: "To be honest, yes."
Jackson Jr., Gutierrez won't run for mayor
Congressmen Jesse Jackson Jr. and Luis Gutierrez have decided not to run for mayor, clearing Mayor Daley's path to re-election after nearly three years of scandal.
The decisions leave Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown and Bill "Dock" Walls, an aide to former Mayor Harold Washington, as the only challengers to a 17-year incumbent battered by the Hired Truck, city hiring and minority contracting scandals.
If Gutierrez and Jackson were looking for reasons not to challenge Daley, they found it in the political sea change that gave the Democrats control of Congress.
It means Gutierrez is in line to chair a powerful subcommittee on financial services and become a senior adviser to the Democratic speaker on immigration issues, his lifelong passion.
It gives new meaning to Jackson's position as Illinois' only representative on the powerful Appropriations Committee. He also could be in line to chair an Appropriations subcommittee.
Whatever leadership positions they assume, it's apparently more attractive than a costly and longshot campaign for mayor.
Congressional allies, Gutierrez and Jackson have both scheduled news conferences today to announce their decisions not to enter the Feb. 27 race.
Steele May Seek to Head RNC
Defeated Maryland Senate candidate Michael Steele (R) is considering "a bid for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee," according to The Fix.Michael Steele recruited six busloads of poor and homeless Philadelphians to hand out flyers to Maryland voters portraying Steele and his ticketmate, governor Bob Ehrlich, as Democrats.
"Steele would not challenge current RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman, but chatter among Republican insiders is that Mehlman has made clear for months that he might not return to his current post."
Michael Steele: you sir, are a clown, a well dressed clown. You only got to run for Senate because you had black skin to offer your white patrons. At no point have you ever stood with black people, protected them. Instead, like the lowest race hustling slug, you lied about your party affiliation, who supported you, everything you could.Indeed.
Because you are a mediocre man, a man who serves the needs of others, even at the cost of his dignity. You solicited criminals, shucked and jived for Bush and lied on your own people for your own personal gain. You have earned this defeat and the return to ignominy that you deserve.
Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON -- Democrats wrested control of the Senate from Republicans Wednesday with an upset victory in Virginia, giving the party complete domination of Capitol Hill for the first time since 1994.
Jim Webb's squeaker win over incumbent Sen. George Allen gave Democrats their 51st seat in the Senate, an astonishing turnabout at the hands of voters unhappy with Republican scandal and unabated violence in Iraq. Allen was the sixth Republican incumbent senator defeated in Tuesday's elections.
Hastert re-elected, but days as House speaker are over
Election nights are usually a cause for celebration for longtime Rep. J. Dennis Hastert.Hastert won't seek leadership post in GOP
But on Tuesday, a somber crowd of supporters watched as Hastert's record run as GOP House speaker was headed for an end.
Returns indicated that Democrats had picked up 20 seats in the House, overcoming the Republicans' 15-seat majority.
Hastert left a gathering of his supporters at St. Charles' historic Hotel Baker before it was clear that Democrats had won control of the House. Hastert thanked the crowd and then the former high school wrestling coach and his wife ducked out a back door, climbed into a black SUV and drove away.
WASHINGTON -- House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert , wounded by the GOP's loss of the House on Tuesday night, said yesterday he will not seek to continue as his party's leader in the next Congress.My bet is Dennis Hastert will not serve out his full term in office. The House Ethics Committee will finally put an end to the career of Tom DeLay lap dog. Under the leadership of Dennis Hastert, Republicans let Rep. Mark Foley continue his misconduct unabated and corruption was standard operating procedure for the Republican majority. Without Dennis Hastert, Illinois might lose pork but, it gains a Democratic majority who will work for the American people rather than big business and it's morally corrupt conservatives allies.
"As a former wrestling coach, I know what it is like when your team takes second place in the state tournament. It hurts. And so it is with politics," the Illinois Republican said in a statement.
"The Republican leader in the 110th Congress will have the responsibility to emphasize conservative values and reform principles. I will not seek this role," but will stay on as a rank-and-file member representing Illinois's 14th district, the speaker said.
Democrats sweep state offices
CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Democrats made a clean sweep of statewide elective offices Tuesday as political newcomer Alexi Giannoulias, a Chicago banker, won the treasurer's post formerly held by Republicans.Democrats make gains in Illinois Legislature
Giannoulias defeated well-regarded state senator Christine Radogno to replace GOP Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka, who lost her bid to unseat Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Secretary of State Jesse White and two-term Comptroller Dan Hynes easily won third terms, while Attorney General Lisa Madigan's political star continued to rise with her re-election.
Madigan defeated Republican Tazewell County State's Attorney Stewart Umholtz, White beat state Sen. Dan Rutherford, R-Chenoa, and Hynes defeated state Sen. Carole Pankau, R-Itasca.
CHICAGO - Illinois Republicans in the state Legislature now know what it's like to run into a political tidal wave.ArchPundit
Hoping to gain seats in the House and stay their ground in the Senate, Republicans watched as Democrats increased their control of the Legislature by adding seats in the state Senate and House.
Thanks partly to a strong showing by their party nationwide, many Democratic incumbents easily won re-election and some led races for state seats that Republicans previously held, according to unofficial results.
Also, Senate Democrats were on the verge of gaining enough seats to have a veto-proof majority, which would allow them to pass measures despite opposition from Republicans or the governor.
2008 is a Presidential year and Dick Durbin will be up for reelection. While he has midling approval ratings, he should win that race relatively easily. The targets then are the House seats that have reasonable chance to be flipped.
IL-6 Roskam will be a Freshman, but will also have a ton of money from groups like the Club for Growth
IL-10 Beg Dan Seals to run again. He’ll win in a Presidential election year.
IL-11 Pavich showed some life, but whether he’d want to try again or not, there would need to be some changes to how the campaign was run (obvious when you lose). Part of the problem is the District is pretty unmanageable given the geography and without State Party support that race is going to be hard to put together.
IL-14 Open seat then if not sooner. It’s a 55-45 District for Republicans in Presidential years. That certainly means it is a potential target–IL-8 is slightly more Republican. It’s a tough race for two reasons. First, there is relatively little Democratic infrastructure in the District (not none, but a not a lot) and it’s ultimately conservative District. Dems can hope Lauzen runs and wins the primary, but that’s hope and not a plan.
IL-17 Hold for Hare who did a good job. The danger is that the GOP might actually find a good candidate. So far there is no evidence of that being a danger.
Some will point to other Districts, but there is little evidence they will be competitive, especially in a Presidential election when the base turns out pretty strongly. IL-15 showed a bit of life with Gill’s run, but that District is probably worse in terms of geography than even IL-11.
Bears' Center Olin Kreutz Signs Contract Extension
LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) -- Chicago Bears Pro Bowl center Olin Kreutz signed a contract extension today which keeps him with the team through the 2010 season.Defensive end Mark Anderson earn rookie honors for October
Kreutz has been named to the Pro Bowl five times in his nine-year career. He's missed one game since he became the starting center on opening day of 1999. He has played in 61 straight regular-season games.
The Bears didn't release terms of the three-year deal. Kreutz's existing six-year $23 million deal wasn't due to expire until after next season. But the Bears sought the extension.
New York, NY (Sports Network) - New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marques Colston and Chicago Bears defensive end Mark Anderson have been selected as the NFL's top rookies for the month of October. [..]
Anderson recorded six sacks during October, notching at least one in all four games. He leads the Bears and all NFL rookies with 7 1/2 sacks this season.
The fifth-round pick out of Alabama totaled 16 tackles for the month and had a forced fumble in each of the last three games during October. One led directly to a defensive touchdown in Chicago's remarkable comeback win over Arizona on October 16.
Anderson, who became the first Chicago player to win defensive rookie honors since Brian Urlacher in October of 2000, has helped the Bears to a 7-0 mark.