“used nearly $100,000 in corporate and unlimited donations to mail last-minute political appeals praising five congressional candidates despite rules meant to keep such money out of federal races,” the AP reports.
Earlier today, Pentagon communications aide Allison Barber “insisted” to reporters that questions during President Bush’s photo-op teleconference “were not rehearsed,” and that no “specific questions” were prepared.
Unfortunately, she was caught on tape acknowledging just the opposite — that she had “drilled through” “all six” of the questions that Bush was going to ask:
BARBER: So here’s what you to be prepared for, Captain Kennedy, is that the president is going to ask some questions. He may ask all six of them, he may ask three of them. He might have such a great time talking to you, he might come up with some new questions. So what we want to be prepared for is to not stutter. So if there’s a question that the president comes up with that we haven’t drilled through today, then I’m expecting the microphone to go right back to you, Captain Kennedy, and you to handle [it].
has “subpoenaed telephone records for the home phone of former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and the phone of his political campaign,” the AP reports.
Matt Drudge broke out the siren this morning for “breaking news” about Harriet Miers. He called this an “exclusive“: The DRUDGE REPORT has obtained a copy of sworn testimony given by Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers in 1990 in which she said that she “wouldn’t belong to the Federalist Society” – a conservative and libertarian lawyers’ organization – because it was “politically charged.” Actually this story is a week old. Here’s a Knight-Ridder article published on October 6: In the same testimony, Miers … said she “wouldn’t belong to the Federalist Society” or other “politically charged” groups because they “seem to color your view one way or another.” Developing…
Matt Drudge broke out the siren this morning for “breaking news” about Harriet Miers. He called this an “exclusive“:
The DRUDGE REPORT has obtained a copy of sworn testimony given by Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers in 1990 in which she said that she “wouldn’t belong to the Federalist Society” – a conservative and libertarian lawyers’ organization – because it was “politically charged.”
Actually this story is a week old. Here’s a Knight-Ridder article published on October 6:
In the same testimony, Miers … said she “wouldn’t belong to the Federalist Society” or other “politically charged” groups because they “seem to color your view one way or another.”
A new advertisement by the Free Enterprise Fund compares Travis County DA Ronnie Earle to an attack dog. (Watch the video here.) The ads will be saturating airwaves in Austin, Earle’s hometown, but will also be running nationally on Fox News.
By pushing grand juries to issue politically motivated indictments of prominent Republicans, Ronnie Earle is trying to make it a crime to be conservative, to support an agenda of lower taxes and less government. That’s un-American.
It’s not a widely held view. Only 24 percent of the public thinks that Earle’s charges against DeLay are politically motivated. Sixty-five percent think the indictments suggest illegal activity by DeLay. (Read the truth about Ronnie Earle here.)
FEF’s defense of Tom DeLay is a “six-figure project” according to Peter Ruff, a vice president at FEF. The group was founded by right-wing activist Stephen Moore, formerly of the Club for Growth, whom the New Republic calls, “A voodoo economist…[who uses] especially devious methods to torture the data.” Moore has called DeLay “a conservative hero” and describes himself as a “Tom DeLay fan.”
“It could kill a billion people worldwide, make ghost towns out of parts of major cities, and there is not enough medicine to fight it,” ABC News reports. It is the avian flu, and if it were to reach U.S. shores, it could be “like having a Category 5 viral hurricane hit every single state simultaneously.”
How fitting, then, that Stewart Simonson, the Bush administration’s assistant secretary for public health emergency preparedness, has a resume “disturbingly reminiscent” to that of disgraced former FEMA chief Michael Brown.
Though Simonson is “now the point man for just about every health emergency that may hit our shores, ranging from anthrax attacks to an avian flu pandemic,” he has no background in medicine, public health, or bioterrorism preparedness. His chief accomplishment seems to be his position from 1995-1999 as legal counsel to former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, who was tapped as President Bush’s first Health and Human Services secretary. Under Thompson, Simonson apparently specialized in “crime and prison policy.”
President Bush has again left Americans dangerously unprepared for a potential disaster. (To push back, join MoveOn’s new campaign calling for Simonson to be replaced.)
Earlier today, President Bush held an “impromptu” public teleconference with a group of U.S. soldiers based in Tikrit, Iraq.
Pentagon communications aide Allison Barber “insisted the questions were not rehearsed. The military had been told ahead of time only about topics the president might want to talk about, not specific questions. ‘We just knew broad themes,’ Barber said.”
Yet reporters could clearly hear White House handlers, including Barber herself, prepping the troops for President Bush’s photo-op:
WH Pooler Geoff Earle of the New York Post writes of the teleconference: “The soldiers, nine U.S. men and one U.S. woman, plus an Iraqi, had been tipped off in advance about the questions in the highly scripted event. Allison Barber, deputy assistant to the Secretary of Defense for internal communication, could be heard asking one soldier before the start of the event, “Who are we going to give that [question] to?”
Hotline (sub. req’d) has published this transcript of pool footage featuring a Bush aide “who was, in her own words, ‘scripting’ the soldiers shortly before their ‘conversation’ with Bush”:
WH aide: “Capt. Kennedy are you ready?”
Kennedy: “I am ready, ma’am.”
WH aide: “Okay this is for the money. We are going to time this and remember that if the president cuts it short, if he asks more questions, if you have the microphone and he follows up with a question to you, no matter who has it, Captain Pratt if you have the microphone and the president hears something and he wants more information, you just keep that microphone and talk to the president.”
WH aide: “But if he gives us a question that is not something that we have scripted Captain Kennedy you are going to have the mic and that’s your chance to impress us all.”
WH aide: “Which won’t be a problem for you.”
UPDATE: Reporter asks Scott McClellan: “How were they selected, and are their comments to the president pre-screened, any questions or anything…” McClellan responds, “No.”
joins the right-wing dogpile on Miers.
At a press conference on October 4, President Bush argued that he was the right person to bridge the racial divide in America:
You address the racial divide in a variety of ways. And, obviously, the tone matters from leadership. It matters what leaders say. It matters that somebody, first of all, understands there’s a problem and is willing to talk about it. And I will continue to do so as the President.
Apparently, it isn’t working so well. A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll finds that just 2 percent of African-Americans approve of his leadership. NBC’s Tim Russert — who called the number “a dramatic setback” — looked into it, and he could not “find a pollster who can remember any President ever getting just 2 percent approval from African-Americans.”
To be fair, the margin of error on the poll is 3.4%. So Bush’s actual approval among African Americans could be anywhere from -1.4% to 5.4%.
Transcript below: Read more