Or certainly seems to be. He’s denying the allegations but also resigning his post, which tends to undercut the denials’ credibility. At some point you’ve got to wonder if any of America’s leading gay-bashers aren’t closeted gay dudes.
Matt Drudge has a banner headline floating a conspiracy theory that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has gone into hiding:
The woman who would be speaker, Nancy Pelosi, has oddly stayed out of the national spotlight in the week leading up to the big vote.
The high profile, potentially history-making democrat has turned dramatically low-key.
The last photo of vanishing Pelosi on the wires was from an October 21 fundraiser.
And since Pelosi appeared on the October 22 broadcast of 60 MINUTES, national TV hits have been nonexistent.
Nancy Pelosi is apparently the worst vanisher ever. Just last night, Pelosi appeared at a sold-out rally at the Warfield Theater with former President Clinton. Portions of the rally were broadcast on television:
Drudge is also wrong about Pelosi avoiding national television appearances. Yesterday CNN aired a feature interview with Pelosi:
Drudge really ought to stop pretending to be a reporter.
UPDATE: ThinkProgress has found multiple other national television appearances. Pelosi appeared on CNBC’s
On the Money Kudlow & Company on 10/24 and on ABC’s Good Morning America and ABC’s World News Tonight on 10/26:
Ted Haggard, one of the most prominent and politically powerful evangelical pastors in the country, resigned today as president of the 30-million-member National Association of Evangelicals “amid allegations that he carried on a three-year sexual relationship with a male prostitute.” (Details HERE.) The AP reports:
Haggard…also stepped down as senior pastor at his 14,000-member New Life Church pending an investigation by a church panel, saying he could “not continue to minister under the cloud created by the accusations.”
“I am voluntarily stepping aside from leadership so that the overseer process can be allowed to proceed with integrity,” Haggard said in a written statement. “I hope to be able to discuss this matter in more detail at a later date. In the interim, I will seek both spiritual advice and guidance.”
The former prostitute who made the accusations, Mike Jones, also today showed the Denver Post letters and voicemails allegedly sent by Haggard:
Jones says he was contacted three years ago by Haggard for sex – he thinks through a gay newspaper advertisement or an online ad he posted on rentboy.com.
Today, Jones showed the Denver Post an envelope addressed to him from “Art,” a name Jones says Haggard used – sent from an address in Colorado Springs. Jones said the envelope came to him with two $100 bills inside.
Jones also played a recording of a voicemail left for Jones from “Art.” Jones refused to reveal what the topic of the voicemail was about because there could be legal problems and he wants to consult with an attorney.
The verdict in the trial of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was recently postponed until November 5, two days before the U.S. midterm elections. Media Matters has questioned whether “the date for the verdict’s release [was] set to provide maximum political benefit for the administration and congressional Republicans.”
Asked today whether the verdict would be a factor in the U.S. elections, White House Press Secretary Tony Snow said, “You are absolutely right, it will be a factor.” Snow said the verdict “may fit into a larger narrative about an Iraqi government that has been doing what the president has said all along.” He portrayed the decision as yet another turning point for Iraq. “This is a benchmark episode, where the Iraqi people are taking control of their own destiny,” he said.
The day Hussein was captured, President Bush addressed the nation. He said the capture “marks the end his of the road…for all who bullied and killed in his name.” For ordinary Iraqis, it was “further assurance that the torture chambers and the secret police are gone forever.” Bush said, “A hopeful day has arrived. All Iraqis can now come together and reject violence and build a new Iraq.”
In the three years since, all of these claims have come undone. Since Hussein was captured:
– 2,358 U.S. soldiers have died, roughly 85 percent of the total U.S. fatalities during the Iraq war.
– Iraq has “become the “cause celebre” for jihadists, breeding a deep resentment of US involvement in the Muslim world and cultivating supporters for the global jihadist movement.” [Link]
– Torture in Iraq “may be worse now than it was under Saddam Hussein, with militias, terrorist groups and government forces disregarding rules on the humane treatment of prisoners,” the U.N.’s anti-torture chief said in September. [Link]
– Prospects for the “new Iraq” have fallen sharply. The 10-member bipartisan commission that is charged with assessing Bush’s Iraq strategy has reportedly “ruled out the prospect for victory.” [Link]
Full transcript: Read more
“A Republican congressman” — Rep. Don Sherwood (R-PA) — “accused of abusing his ex-mistress agreed to pay her about $500,000 in a settlement last year that contained a powerful incentive for her to keep quiet until after Election Day, a person familiar with the terms of the deal told The Associated Press.”
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For a while now, I’ve been struggling to express exactly what’s been bothering me about the new counterinsurgency focus within some quarters of the US Army and sectors of the press. This morning’s Cato forum asking what we’ve learned about counterinsurgency from Iraq and Afghanistan was very helpful in that regard. On hand was Dr. Conrad Crane from the US Army War College Institute of Strategic Studies. Crane is, among other things, the lead author of the widely-hailed new counterinsurgency field manual. Listening to his presentation and reading portions of the manual, what I keep coming back to is this: If you accept the claims being made here, they amount to saying here’s a strategy by which we could have established a stable Iraqi state with effective internal security forces.
The thing of it is that if what we wanted was a stable Iraqi state with effective internal security forces, we could have gotten through a much easier method than an expensive and arduous well-implemented counterinsurgency doctrine. All we needed to do was not invade. A stable Iraq simply wasn’t ever the goal of the mission. The administration’s goal was a stable Iraqi state with effective internal security forces that would play host to a permanent American military presence and serve as a loyal ally against Iran, Syria, and other regional foes. As an added bonus, they wanted a beacon of human rights and democracy. That isn’t something a better counterinsurgency manual would have let us achieve.
And this, again, is the problem with incompetence dodgers’ appeals to counterinsurgency theory to prove that liberal hawks weren’t wrong, just betrayed by Bush’s bungling. Like the Bush administration, their war aims were substantially more ambitious than anything counterinsurgency warfare theorists are prepared to promise. The liberal hawk crowd probably put more weight than the administration on the beacon of freedom and democracy aspect and a bit less on obtaining an ally in America’s continuing quest for regional hegemony, but it was roughly the same mix. There was, simply put, never any reason to think the prospects of this outcome were good, and nothing about counterinsurgency doctrine should make you think otherwise.
Former Rep. Bob Dornan (R-CA) launched a vicious attack on Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), claiming that “loyal catholics” and others who “believe in Christianity” should make sure she stays out of power. The failure to do so would mean jumping “into the hell fire of a Nancy Pelosi Catholic who votes for abortion and rights for perverts.” Watch it:
Actually, it’s Dornan who’s out of touch with Catholics. According to Gallup, 58 percent of American Catholics believe that one can be a good Catholic without obeying the church hierarchy’s teaching regarding abortion — up from 39 percent in 1987. This translates into roughly 38 million out of an estimated 65 million Catholics in America.
Campus Progress has more from Dornan’s appearance.
Transcript: Read more
A male prostitute alleges that he had a three-year relationship with prominent right-wing evangelical leader Ted Haggard, who has said that homosexuality is a “sin” and “devastating for the children of our nation and for the future of Western civilization.” Haggard denies the allegation.
Haggard is president of the National Association of Evangelicals, representing more than 30 million conservative Christians. Time Magazine ranked him as one of the 25 most influential evangelicals and Harper’s contributing editor Jeff Sharlet noted, “No pastor in America holds more sway over the political direction of evangelicalism than does Pastor Ted.”
Every Monday, Haggard participates in a conference call with members of the Bush administration. He has stated, “I’m a right-wing religious conservative. … I joke that the only disagreement I have with George Bush is on what type of truck to drive.”
Haggard’s accuser, Mike Jones, says “he has recorded voicemails and a letter from Haggard, and that he had also witnessed Haggard use methamphetamine.”
AMERICABlog has more.
Full transcript below: Read more