ThinkFast: December 9, 2010

Media Matters obtained internal Fox News correspondence authored by the network’s leadership, including D.C. managing editor Bill Sammon, which reveal that Fox bosses instructed their journalists not to use the term “public option” during the health care fight. Sammon wrote that Fox’s reporters should instead use “government option” and similar phrases. Polling by Frank Luntz showed that using “government option” language made the public option unpopular with the American public.

After leading the fight against gays in the military in 1993, former Sen. Sam Nunn (D-GA) reversed his position on DADT and now says it should be overturned as long as the Pentagon is given a year to prepare for the change. Nunn, who once believed gay troops would hurt cohesion and morale, said he was swayed by military testimony and recognized that “society has changed, and the military has changed.”

The House passed the DREAM Act last night along party lines. The measure “offers a path to citizenship for young people who were brought to this country illegally before age 16 and who have enrolled in college or entered the military.” Obama said the vote was historic and urged the Senate to pass the bill, however the measure “faces a tough test” in the upper chamber.

Dealing “the final blow” to President Obama’s pledge to close Guantanamo Bay, Congress passed a provision yesterday that blocks closing the prison or any of its suspected terrorist detainees from transfer to the U.S. for trial. The Department of Justice rebuked the provision, saying it limits “the tools available to the executive branch in bringing terrorists to justice and advancing our national security interests.”

Republicans have selected Rep. Harold Rogers (R-KY) to lead the powerful House Appropriations committee, which oversees federal spending. Rogers, however, is a prodigious earmarker known as the “Prince of Pork” for the hundreds of millions of dollars he has steered to his state. The Wall Street Journal reports that “some fiscal conservatives are asking whether he’s the right man to chair” the committee.

Internet activists are declaring a “cyberwar” against multinational companies and other organizations they have deemed hostile to WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange. After Assange’s arrest in Britain this week, hackers attacked the websites of WikiLeak’s “enemies,” causing several of them “to become inaccessible or slow down markedly.”

Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, said yesterday that he opposes Arizona-style immigration laws that allow law enforcement to demand proof of citizenship from anyone they deem suspicious — something that lawmakers in Florida are now proposing. Bush said his children might look suspicious to police and “[i]t’s the wrong approach.”

The House of Representatives “narrowly approved a stripped-down budget bill Wednesday evening, cutting nearly $46 billion from President Barack Obama’s requests.” At the end of the process, the budget totaled $1.09 trillion.

And finally: While the White House scrambles to line up the votes for its tax cut deal, one Democratic congressman isn’t budging. Appearing on MSNBC’s The Dylan Ratigan Show, Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) said that members of the House Democratic caucus are asking, “Why should we take this vote? We’re going to get blamed for adding to the deficit. This isn’t the dream act, this is the Republican wet dream act.

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