Tonight during his interview with Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK), Sean Hannity asked her, “Did you originally support [the Bridge to Nowhere] and did you change your view on it?” Failing to note that she originally supported the bridge, Palin claimed simply, “I killed the Bridge to Nowhere.” Watch it:
Palin, as ThinkProgress and others have repeatedly documented, was a strong advocate for the Bridge to Nowhere and repeatedly expressed her desire to renew federal funding for the project. The McCain-Palin campaign has now misrepresented Palin’s record with regard to the Bridge to Nowhere at least 36 times:
As part of the abuse of power investigation — known as “Troopergate” — against Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK), Alaska state lawmakers voted last week to subpoena her husband Todd because, as investigator Stephen Branchflower said, he is “such a central figure.” But today, the AP reports that Todd Palin is refusing to testify:
Palin’s lawyer sent a letter to the lead investigator saying Palin objected to the probe and would not appear to testify on Friday.
“The objections boil down to the fact that the Legislative Council investigation is no longer a legitimate investigation because it has been subjected to complete partisanship and does not operate with the authority that it had at the time of its initial authorization,” McCain-Palin presidential campaign spokesman Ed O’Callaghan said.
Gov. Palin initially welcomed the legislature’s investigation but has since argued that the state Personnel Board — which is appointed by the governor — should have jurisdiction over the case. But the McCain campaign has sent O’Callaghan to Alaska in an attempt to shut down the investigation all together.
The Sacramento Bee reports that Proposition 8, a California constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriage, has “lost support during the past two months and now trails by a 17-point margin.”
Today on her radio show, Laura Ingraham mocked those who were “panicking” about Wall Street’s collapse and insisted that “the best thing we could do today” would be to invest in the stock market. She also ridiculed lawmakers, like Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV), who are worried about the crisis, calling them “girly”:
We need to send signals of confidence and long-term belief in our financial markets. We need to send that signal to the rest of the world. And for Harry Reid — and to any of these other congressmen and senators up there, in both parties, who feel like the best that they can do is wave their arms in this girly fashion of fear — come on, step up to the plate.
The rescues, while necessary to prevent a wider financial meltdown, will cause the already near-record federal deficit of $407 billion to explode. Before the bailouts, the projected federal deficit for 2009 was $546 billion. But when President George Bush came to office eight years ago, it was projected that America would have a budget surplus next year of $710 billion. So what happened?
The key factors have been large tax cuts and increases in security-related programs. For fiscal 2009, some $1 trillion of the $1.3 trillion deterioration in the nation’s fiscal finances stems from policy actions, and tax cuts account for 42 percent of this $1 trillion deterioration.
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), for his part, has proposed a doubling of the Bush tax cuts, which would blow an even bigger hole in an already-spiraling federal deficit. A Center for American Progress analysis concluded that McCain’s proposals would result in a deficit of $505 billion, before the government has to ante up for the bailouts. With America on the hook for $900 billion, and with the effects of Bush’s irresponsible tax cuts lingering, how will McCain pay for any of his proposals?
This week is the first time I’ve learned of the existence of the following bands:
Airborne Toxic Event
The Strange Death of Liberal England
Thus far, I’m liking them both. Here’s some toxicity:
White Noise and The Strange Death of Liberal England are both highly recommended. Indeed, at one point “The Strange Death of Liberal Internationalism” was under consideration as a Heads in the Sand subtitle.
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) had been planning to hold a meeting on the economic crisis today. However, his conference was forced to cancel it when the Bush administration reportedly “refused” to send over a representative to “brief House Republicans on the federal government’s response to the latest financial turmoil.” Boehner said he was “concerned about the lack of information and the lack of consultation that has occurred.” Earlier this week, the White House also canceled press coverage of Bush’s meeting with his chief financial advisory group.
Canadian readers will no doubt dismiss this as an oversimplification, but in the scheme of things Canadians are a lot like Americans. And one respect in which they resemble Americans is that Canadians have some knowledge of American politics and history. But in another respect, this is one of the biggest differences between Canada and the United States — Canadians are intensely familiar with aspects of a foreign country, whereas Americans tend to know almost nothing of the world outside our borders. Take this account of MP Bob Rae on the stump:
He went so far as — we thought the Conservatives were the worst at this kind of hyperbole — to compare Mr. Harper to the president during the Great Depression. “From Mr. Harper … we have ideology, we have personal attacks, we have negativity and we have Herbert Hoover in a blue sweater.”
I’m not sure I’ve ever heard a U.S. politician draw an analogy to any foreign leader other than Churchill or Hitler. And then there’s this from his blog:
We need to build a progessive coalition to defeat the Harperites. This isn’t about saving the NDP’s skin. It’s about defeating, and replacing, a government that doesn’t believe in child care, better health care, a new partnership with first nations, Metis, and Inuit, investment in cities and has no commitment whatsoever to the environment. The NDP doesn’t get that. Jack Layton thinks he’s Obama. What a joke. He’s Ralph Nader, hand on the horn, “no difference between Bush and Al Gore”.
Zing! Obviously in large part this just reflects the realities of Canadian geography. Not many people live in Canada, and Canada’s major population centers are all pretty close to the US border and often far away from each other. Still, it’s striking.
On the McCain campaign plane today, top adviser Steve Schmidt slammed congressional leaders for adjourning for recess on Sept. 26 before attempting to legislate a fix for the recent Wall Street meltdown:
It is a disgrace, a disgrace that the Democratic Congress would say, ‘We’re going to leave Washington and we think this benefits us politically. … When the democratic leadership in the Congress says we’ll deal with this after the election, we’re going home now is a clear indication that they’re not interested in working, you know, in a bipartisan way, where everybody sits in a room and says we have a major problem here in this country.
The White House, however, thinks a rush to pass legislation isn’t prudent. In today’s briefing, Press Secretary Dana Perino said she didn’t know if the White House even had a legislative request for Congress to act on, and hesitated to push legislation during a “market correction”:
I don’t know if we will have specific actions that we would ask them to take. … But I think Democrats themselves, and maybe some Republicans, have questioned whether or not they will be able to get anything done in the next two weeks. And it probably isn’t that smart to try to finalize a legislation in the middle of a market correction as we’re trying to figure out what other possible necessary steps may or may not need to be taken as we move forward.
Perino said any call for a lame-duck session is “premature,” adding, “I think right now that the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve have things in hand.” Watch it:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) echoed this sentiment, saying that “lawmakers first would need a better understanding of how the problems developed,” before legislating any remedy, CQ reports. Congress “has to find out what happened, why it happened, who is responsible and how we ought to go forward in the future,” said Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), rejecting calls for passing legislation immediately.