The FBI failed to take action after receiving inappropriate emails sent by Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL), then lied about it and tried to blame the government watchdog group CREW.
Sen. Wayne Allard (R-CO) and Rep. Marilyn Musgrave (R-CO), the two leading advocates of amending the US Constitution to ban same-sex marriage, “say they have no plans to make a third try to advance the proposal.” “If we thought there was a decent chance to bring it to the floor for debate, I would, but with the new Congress, I’m not sure we will ever have that opportunity,” Allard says.
In Aug. 2005, researchers at Harvard University developed a way to turn “ordinary skin cells into what appear to be embryonic stem cells — without having to use human eggs or make new human embryos in the process.”
This month, the White House Domestic Policy Council (DPC) put out a report citing this research as evidence that embryonic stem cell research is unnecessary.
But according to the authors of the Harvard study, the White House has distorted their research. In a letter to Reps. Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Mike Castle (R-DE), the authors write:
We are surprised to see our work on reprogramming adult stem cells used to support arguments that research involving human embryonic stem cells is unnecessary. On the contrary, we assert that human embryonic stem cells hold great promise to find new treatments and cures for diseases. …
The work that we performed and that was cited in the White House policy report is precisely the type of research that is currently being harmed by the President’s arbitrary limitation on federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research. …
We feel that the President’s restrictive policy has directly impeded research that provides a hope for cures for millions of Americans. …
The White House has clearly gotten it wrong. The overwhelming consensus in the scientific and medical community is that embryonic stem cell research holds the greatest potential to cure diseases and end the suffering of millions.
Read the full letter HERE.
(American Progress’s Jonathan Moreno and Samuel Berger have more on the DPC’s distortions.)
WSJ: “President Bush’s signature foreign-assistance program is likely to run out of money this year, leaving in the lurch several poor countries that have labored to meet its strict eligibility standards, according to aid officials. Mr. Bush introduced the Millennium Challenge program in 2002 as a new approach to fix the perceived failures of overseas-development assistance.”
Sen. John Warner (R-VA) will introduce a resolution today “making clear that he does not support the President on increasing the troop levels in Iraq” and calling escalation “a mistake,” CNN’s Dana Bash reports. Warner’s resolution will be cosponsored by Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Ben Nelson (D-NE).
Warner, the former Armed Services Committee chairman, is a “very influential voice when it comes to military matters,” Bash reports, and until this fall had been “whole-heartedly behind the president and the war.” His new resolution “certainly…is not going to sit well with the White House.” Watch it:
Warner said last week that Congress must move swiftly to address President Bush’s new strategy. “Each of us are pained by the casualties that we are taking. We cannot dither around on it.” Warner’s bill is viewed as a less confrontational alternative to the Iraq resolution backed by Sens. Joe Biden (D-DE), Chuck Hagel (R-NE) and Carl Levin (D-MI).
Full transcript: Read more
New details have emerged about this weekend’s assault in Karbala that killed five U.S. soldiers. The Iraqi gunmen “were wearing what appeared to be American military uniforms in an effort to impersonate United States soldiers.” This appears to be the first time that attackers have portrayed themselves as Americans, raising concerns about Bush’s plan to embed U.S. troops in Iraqi units.
The long-awaited National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq is still not complete, a National Intelligence Council official told senators last week. The official said the intel community has been too busy “dealing with the many demands placed upon it by the Bush Administration to help prepare the new military strategy on Iraq.” Senate hearing attendees “now believe that senior intelligence officials are stalling because an NIE will be bleak enough to present a significant political liability.”
Okay, time for an informal survey. How many people know what The Voyage of the Mimi — the classic 1980s-vintage educational series starring a young Ben Affleck — is? I and many acquaintances regard it as a critical Generation Y cultural landmark, like Thundercats or the Oregon Trail, but a frighteningly large number of people don’t seem to know anything about it and think it’s weird that I know the theme song.
We watched it in my school in, I think, fourth grade and while I’m not sure I recall any of the core whale-related knowledge it was seeking to impart, I’m fairly certain that to this day I understand the basic principles underlying the construction of a solar still to collect condensation and provide drinking water in case you’re ever stranded in the wilderness.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) recently warned that the Bush administration is building a case against Iran. “This whole concept of moving against Iran is bizarre,” he said. When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) warned last week that President Bush does not have the authority to launch an attack against Iran without congressional approval, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino responded that she was “puzzled” because Reid seemed “to be fanning [the] flames where there’s no fire.”
That’s not the view of Richard Perle, a leading neoconservative proponent of the Iraq war. Speaking at a conference this weekend in Israel, Perle suggested Bush would attack Iran before he leaves office:
“Would this president do it? I think that until the day he leaves office, this is a president that, if he is told, ‘Mr. President, you are at the point of no return,’ I have very little doubt that this president would order the necessary military action.”
“I’m not convinced that we have a lot of time. Given the peril that would result, its astonishing to me that we do not now have a serious political strategy with Iran,” he said, adding he thought regime change is “the only significant effective way” to deal with the Iranian threat.
“If we continue on our current course, we have only a military option. So what I’m urging, and this should have happened a very long time ago, is that we make a serious effort to work with the internal (Iranian) opposition,” Perle said.
Perle is reported to have once said, “The first time I met Bush 43 … two things became clear. One, he didn’t know very much. The other, that he had the confidence to ask questions that revealed he didn’t know very much.”
Richard Just remains convinced that Iran is, in fact, likely to launch an unprovoked nuclear first strike on Israel, and at the same time disclaims possession of any knowledge about Iran or Iranian affairs and denies having a view as to the appropriate policy remedy for this threat. Frankly, I’m confused and don’t really know what kind of argument one can mount under those circumstances.
UPDATE: I mean, really, anyone who doesn’t think Iran is going to launch an unprovoked nuclear first strike on Israel isn’t taking this issue seriously? Kenneth Pollack? Ray Takeyh? Really? Are there any real experts on Iran who agree with the Halevi/Oren/Just position on this? In my experience, stoking paranoia about an Iranian nuclear first strike has been an idiosyncratic project of The New Republic that not even The Weekly Standard has gone in for.