A small group of moderate senators including Arlen Specter (R., Pa.) reached the deal that appeared to assure Senate passage of an economic stimulus bill yesterday after more than 10 hours of near-constant private meetings.
Specter was in the middle of the action, with many critical talks occurring in his private “hideaway” office on the first floor of the Capitol.
Nobody involved was really happy, but there was a consensus that the group did not want to say no to the president or an anxious nation.
In announcing that a tentative deal had been reached, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) credited Specter and Sens. Susan Collins (R., Maine), Ben Nelson (D., Neb.) and Joe Lieberman (I., Conn.) with saving the package.
“But for them we would not be here,” Reid said, yielding the floor to the Gang of Four to detail the agreement.
Yearly Archives: 2009
From The Caucus at The New York Times:
At least one prominent former Bush official has the following message for President Obama: I don’t care if it’s warm enough to grow orchids in the Oval Office. Put your suit jacket on.
In an interview scheduled to run Wednesday night, Andrew H. Card Jr. told the syndicated news show Inside Edition that “there should be a dress code of respect” in the White House and that he wished Mr. Obama “would wear a suit coat and tie.”
Chimpy always wore a suit coat and tie in the Oval Office. However, there’s something that Andy Card won’t tell you…
Original DVD cover.
…And don’t ask me–I don’t know why Condi is smiling about Chimpy not wearing pants. You know me, I never gossip.
From the Los Angeles Times:
[…] former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s self-exculpatory campaign train rolled into the Ed Sullivan Theater last night. I don’t expect to see “Letterman/Blagojevich” up for any Oscars in 2039, but the real thing provided an odd half hour of television.
“I’ve been wanting to be on your show in the worst way for the longest time,” Blagojevich told “Late Show” host David Letterman.
“Well, you’re on in the worst way, believe me,” Letterman lobbed back, having been served a straight line that was old the first time your granny heard it.
“For the life of me, I have no idea why this guy is here,” Letterman had said, but that wasn’t really so hard to answer. The ousted governor, who has also lately appeared on “The View,” “The Rachel Maddow Show” and “The Today Show” (“and every other show that is in production currently,” said the host), had, like most “Late Show” guests, something to sell: his version of whatever truth is out there.
“Now, are you going to continue to be on TV?” Letterman finally asked.
Oh, Dave, you don’t know the half of it! Now, I have to tell you, kids, that I am not yet convinced that Blago did anything that every other politician hasn’t done (other than get caught). That said, I’m getting sick of seeing his mug on every show on TV. So, I figured I would change the channel to TVLand and catch some of the old comedies.
I figured that would be a Blago-free zone, but I was mistaken. Had I been paying closer attention, I would have known that when this flashed on the screen:
Editorial from The New York Times:
Last year, Karl Rove defied a Congressional subpoena ordering him to testify about the politically driven hiring and firing of United States attorneys. The House Judiciary Committee has now issued another subpoena. Congress and the Obama administration should do everything they can to compel him to testify.
Americans deserve a full accounting. Monica Goodling, a top aide to Alberto Gonzales, admitted that she hired lawyers for nonpartisan jobs based on their politics. The Justice Department’s inspector general found that Bradley Schlozman, the onetime head of the civil rights division, politicized his staff and made false statements to Congress. Other witnesses have told investigators that prosecutors were allowed to keep their jobs or were fired based on whether they brought cases that helped Republicans win elections.
From the New York Post:
Just weeks after Citigroup averted total collapse with a $45 billion shot in the arm of taxpayer cash, the bank jetted its former CEO and his family on one of its corporate jets to a posh Mexican resort for New Year’s, The Post has learned.
Sandy Weill, 75, hopped aboard the tanking bank’s Bombardier BD 700 Global Express on Dec. 26 with his wife, Joan, daughter Jessica, her husband and their children.
The holiday jaunt came the same week that Citigroup – which lost $28.2 billion over the last five quarters and cut 75,000 jobs globally in 2008 – agreed to curtail runaway corporate expenses as part of a deal to get the massive influx of federal money.
From Business Week (January 30):
So much for bipartisanship…10 days into the President’s term and it’s over. Only the tiniest signs of inter-party mixing and mingling exist.
We’re not talking the stimulus bill here. We’re talking serious stuff: the President’s Super Bowl party.
After two days of questioning, the press office just released a list of the elected officials who will be watching the big game with Obama in the White House. The final score? Donkeys: 11. Elephants: 3. Seven of the guests hail from either Arizona or Pennsylvania, though apparently neither presidential rival John McCain or John Kyl, Arizona’s two Republican Senators, will be there. Pennsylvania will be better represented: both Democrat Bob Casey and Republican Arlen Specter will be in the house.
From The Washington Post (January 30th):
The unanimous vote by House Republicans against President Obama’s stimulus plan provided an early indication that the GOP hopes to regain power by becoming the champion of small government, a reputation many felt slipped away during the high-spending Bush years.
“House Republicans said we would stand up for American taxpayers at this time of economic hardship for our nation. And last night, standing together, that’s exactly what we did,” House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) wrote yesterday in a memo to his colleagues that was released to reporters. “I am proud of our team.”
Republicans credited their leadership team for keeping them united in the demand for more tax cuts and less spending in the bill, providing a boost for Boehner, who three months ago faced questions about whether he could retain his position as House Republicans were headed for another election marked by heavy losses.