Despite calls for Justice Scalia to recuse himself from a key detainee case, “those present at today’s oral arguments report that Justice Scalia stayed on the bench during the arguments and appeared to be the Justice most amenable to the government’s position.” More here.
So says right-wing Tennessee State Rep. Debra Maggart (R): “We…have seen evidence that homosexual couples prey on young males and have, in some instances, adopted them in order to have unfretted [sic] access to subject them to a life of molestation and sexual abuse,” she said. Adoption institutions strongly disagree.
The New York Times reported yesterday on a confidential January 2003 memo that showed President Bush “was determined to invade Iraq” even without a second UN resolution. Yesterday on Hardball, the source of that memo, British scholar Philippe Sands, revealed the existence of yet another revealing pre-war memo:
SANDS: Another memo which records a conversation between Colin Powell and his counterpart in the United Kingdom, Jack Straw, which makes it clear that in Colin Powell’s eyes if there wasn’t enough evidence for a second Security Council resolution, then there wasn’t enough evidence to justify the U.S. going it alone.
As Tiny Revolution notes, a May 2003 UK Guardian article reported on a transcript of a meeting between Powell and Straw in which the two discussed their doubts that WMDs existed in Iraq. The paper later agreed to retract portions of the story after Straw “made it clear that no such meeting took place.” It seems the Guardian was right after all.
Full transcript below: Read more
Radio host Rush Limbaugh has turned his guns on 16-year-old golf prodigy Michelle Wie. In a recent interview with BadGolfer.com:
[Wie is] a triumph of marketing. … Do you think these PGA Tour guys really think she deserves to be a tournament with them? The political-correctness situation will just not allow them to say it. … [Golf champion Vijay Singh, who was criticized for saying of another female player, "If I'm drawn with her, which I won't be, I won't play"] learned like many people in our unfortunate society where political correctness is prized most. Vijay was honest and look what it got him. Attacked by a bunch of liberals and femi-nazis.
Michelle Wie is the best 16-year-old golfer in the world, male or female. At age 12, she became the youngest player ever to qualify for an LPGA (women’s) tournament. In recent months, she has played three PGA Tour events, where she scored better than 86 professional male golfers.
Prominent PGA tour golfers have praised Wie. PGA champ Davis Love III said Wie “probably has one of the best golf swings I’ve ever seen, period,” and two-time U.S. Open champion Ernie Els said, “there’s no reason why she shouldn’t be out here.” Apparently, Limbaugh believes that if it wasn’t for the “liberals and femi-nazis” and “the political-correctness situation” Love and Els would also be trashing Wie. (Nevermind that she reguarly drives the ball over 300 yards. Check out her incredible swing here.)
In 2003, Limbaugh was lambasted for claiming that five-time Pro Bowl Quarterback Donovan McNabb “got a lot of credit for the performance of this team that he didn’t deserve” because the media was “very desirous that a black quarterback do well.” Limbaugh resigned from ESPN’s NFL Countdown soon after.
Josh Bolten’s record suggests he will not be a strong enough voice to stand up to President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Karl Rove, or Donald Rumsfeld. Rove has said Bolten is “very soft-spoken but very clear thinking. … I love him in an entirely appropriate way.”
In 2004, Bolten set a funding cap of $256 billion for the transportation bill, and he threatened a veto if Congress went over the cap. When Congress moved forward with a transportation bill in 2005, Bolten raised the cap to $283.9 billion. But when Congress finally passed a $286.5 billion bill, Bolten could not convince Bush to follow through and veto the pork-laden bill.
BOLTEN’S FIRST VETO THREAT:
The Administration’s proposed authorization level of $256 billion over six years is consistent with the three principles listed above. We support a responsible six-year bill and support many of the provisions contained in this legislation. However, we oppose S. 1072 and the pending substitute because their spending levels are too high and they violate these principles discussed above. Accordingly, if legislation that violates these principles (such as this legislation, which authorizes $318 billion) were presented to the President, his senior advisors would recommend that he veto the bill. [Statement of Administration Policy, 2/11/04]
BOLTEN’S SECOND VETO THREAT:
Under the final version of the surface transportation bill, total obligation limitations for surface-transportation programs (combined with contract authority that is exempt from obligation limitations and general fund appropriations for public transportation) must not exceed $283.9 billion over the period 2004 through 2009. “¦ Should the obligation or net authorization levels that would result from the final bill exceed these limits, the President’s senior advisors would recommend that he veto the bill. [Statment of Administration Policy, 4/26/05]
CONGRESS: Provided $286.4 billion in the transportation bill.
RESULT: No Veto
wants his concealed handgun permit back. It was revoked after DeLay was criminally indicted.
As the Senate takes up debate on immigration reform and the right wing steps up its inflammatory rhetoric, a new poll released today finds that about 2/3 of legal immigrants in the United States believe anti-immigrant sentiment is growing and is fueled by racism.
Additionally, 68 percent of the respondents favored the McCain-Kennedy immigration bill. Nineteen percent favored Bush’s temporary worker proposal and only eight percent favored the House’s enforcement-only bill.
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who once called Rev. Jerry Falwell an “agent of intolerance,” will be the graduation speaker at Falwell’s Liberty University on May 13. “He is in the process of healing the breech with evangelical groups,” Falwell said. (Via TPM)
$6.592 trillion: Federal debt on June 26, 2003, the day Josh Bolten became director of the Office of Management and Budget.
$8.364 trillion: Federal debt today.
In the Bush administration, this is grounds for a promotion.
Tal Afar, an Iraqi town singled out last week by President Bush as a success story for American and Iraqi forces, “was last night the scene of a suicide bombing that killed at least 40 people and wounded 20 others.”
In an “apparent effort to mend his relationship with the press,” President Bush has been “holding informal off-the-record sessions with major news organizations over the last several days.” Knight-Ridder’s Ron Hutcheson said they were “likely part of the outreach aimed at improving support for the Iraq War.”
$28 Billion: Possible revenue oil companies stand to gain over the next five years under an obscure provision in last year’s giant energy bill that allows companies to avoid paying royalties on oil and gas produced in the Gulf of Mexico. “The provision received almost no Congressional debate, in part because Congress was lazy and in part because the provision was misleadingly advertised as cost-free.”
The White House withdrew its nomination of David Sanborn, a former Dubai Ports World executive, to run the U.S. Maritime Administration.
Abdul Rahman, the Afghan man who faced execution for converting to Christianity, was released from prison today and “quickly vanished,” “apparently out of fear for his life.” Italy’s foreign minister “said he would ask his government to grant Abdul Rahman asylum.” Read more