GOP Sen. Norm Coleman and the war in Iraq lead the digest today. AP has an interesting look at how the table has turned on him regarding Iraq. Coleman and his staff have said little to the Minnesota based press corps. We'll learn more today during his weekly conference call.
The Star Tribune says Coleman voted for a moderate troop proposal but opposes the biggie being offered Democrats.
He may, however, vote for a bill that follows the Iraq Study Group recommendations.
The Hill says GOP unity is at risk despite defeating the Democratic bills.
MPR says Republicans aren't the only ones taking heat on Iraq. Some rank and file Democrats are unhappy with the Democrats in control of Congress.
CQ looks at Coleman's voting record.
Senators introduce pool safety legislation. DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar and GOP Rep. Jim Ramstad are mentioned.
Klobuchar also tours a sustainable building.
GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann votes against a bill that would increase Pell Grants.
An op-ed says passage of the Farm Bill (authored by DFL Rep. Collin Peterson) may show House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's effectiveness.
Legislature and State Government
The 3M cleanup is much larger than originally thought.
The Pi Press says state lawmakers and others are working to design a better, more cost effective health care system. Maybe they said "We can rebuild you... We have the technology. Better, stronger, faster."
What tv show does that line come from? One attaboy/attagirl to the first person who guesses correctly.
A cutting edge cotton harvester rolls off the line in Benson. Gov. Pawlenty is there for the event.
Politico writes about Al Franken's strong fundraising.
Good news/Bad News for John McCain. The good news is that Stu Rothenberg says past fundraising peformances (good or bad) don't always guarantee future success. The bad news is that this blog says his campaign is in debt.
Is she still a Queen if she takes off her crown? Annie Leibovitz has guts.
Posted at 11:14 AM on July 12, 2007
by Tom Scheck
AP says a candidate who is studying abroad will challenge endorsed candidate Linda Pheilsticker:
ST. PAUL (AP) - The D-F-L endorsed candidate for the House District 28-B special election will face a primary challenge from a candidate that is now studying abroad. Linda Pheilsticker of rural Wabasha won D-F-L endorsement on the first ballot on July 9th. Candidate Wes Moreland of Pine Island didn't attend the convention and received no votes but the Secretary of State's office verifies that Moreland didn't officially withdraw from the race by yesterday's five p-m deadline and has scheduled the primary election for July 24th. The winner of the primary will face Republican endorsee Steve Drazkowski in the general election on August Seventh to fill the vacancy left by former House Speaker Steve Swiggum, who was named commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry. District 28-B is located in southeastern Minnesota and includes portions of Goodhue, Wabasha and Winona counties. ---
Posted at 11:51 AM on July 12, 2007
by Bob Collins
Porno king Larry Flynt is offering $1 million to anyone who can show he or she had a sexual encounter with a member of Congress or a high-ranking government official. He said the offer has produced promising tips.
"I don't want a man like that legislating for me, especially in the areas of morality," he said of "big-sin"-committer Sen. David Vitter.
At last check, Beverly Hills was not located in Louisiana.
For some reason I can't get that old Jack Benny joke out of my head.
"Your money or your life!"
"I'm thinking... I'm thinking"
Posted at 2:38 PM on July 12, 2007
by Bob Collins
I wrote a week or so ago about how campaign Web sites have made some elements of mainstream media (and blogger) sites less relevant than in years passed. MPR, for example, has stacked candidate news conference audio on candidate pages in previous campaign projects. But is there still a market for that since the candidates, themselves, are providing streaming material?
I guess the Pew Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism had the same feeling because it is out with a piece today on candidate Web sites.
The campaigns themselves, through their official websites, seem to be challenging the press as a destination for campaign news. Furthermore, these highly interactive sites are facilitating everything from blogging to fundraising to social networking.
However, the Center found these sites wanting, especially in the area of voter registration. It was particularly entertaining to see the most-used-words profiles. The top word on Ron Paul's bio -- "never" -- deflates the whole "can do" thing, doesn't it? And honk if the name of your candidate's spouse wasn't on the list.
While giving props to the sites for focusing on issues rather than the "horse race," it's hard not to laugh out loud when they're criticized for being self-serving. A high "doink" factor, you know.
Time Magazine's cover story this week is based on a poll on religion and American politics.
The three Democratic frontrunners are leading a fundamental shift in how their party thinks about religious Americans, which includes the first party-wide effort to target and court Catholic and evangelical voters. Republicans, meanwhile, have been lining up to receive the seal of approval from Pat Robertson and James Dobson. But at the same time, Mitt Romney has gone to great lengths to avoid talking about his Mormonism, John McCain's religious advisors quit his campaign in disgust, and when the AP inquired as to what church Rudy Giuliani attended, the former mayor essentially told them to mind their own business.
I commented in the comments section of another thread that I'm waiting for someone to ask a Catholic candidate whether he/she/it agrees with the pope that there's only one true religion.
Now that would be a fascinating debate.
Posted at 3:48 PM on July 12, 2007
by Tom Scheck
GOP Sen. Norm Coleman held a conference call with reporters this afternoon. He talked about several things including nuclear security, the war in Iraq and Scooter Libby. Since there has been plenty of attention on Senator Coleman's position on Iraq, we're posting the entire conference call. You can listen to it here.