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  Beauprez Campaign Apologizes... AgainAugust 31, 2006 16:00 The Bob Beauprez campaign is in the news again. And, as careful observers know by now, that can't be a good thing for Bob Beauprez.
In fact, it's downright appalling.

And you don't have to quote me on that. You can quote Beauprez himself. It's all there in the latest Beauprez apology, which we'll get to in a moment.

First, though, we should reminisce about the good old days. I remember a time - gee, I think it was sometime after Mexican Time - when Beauprez's worst problem was being called Both Ways Bob.

Now, people are starting to whisper - and I mean, even Republican people - that Beauprez is on the verge of becoming No Way Bob.

It may be too soon to say his campaign is imploding. It's not to soon for volunteers to wear a hard hat when visiting headquarters.

  Rumsfeld Chides Critics For Appeasing FascismAugust 29, 2006 21:26 Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said critics of the Bush administration's counterterrorism policies are appeasing "a new type of fascism."

In some unusually blunt terms, Rumsfeld said the administration's detractors suffer from "moral and intellectual confusion" about global security threats. And he said they lack the courage to fight back.

In remarks prepared for a speech to an American Legion convention, Rumsfeld recalled the failed efforts to appease Adolf Hitler's regime in the 1930s and said the U.S. today faces "the same kind of challenges."

  Sen. Clinton Offers To Raise Money For Lamont CampaignAugust 28, 2006 19:01 In a private meeting at her Chappaqua, N.Y., home on Friday, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton offered to help Ned Lamont in his battle to unseat Senator Joseph I. Lieberman by sponsoring a fund-raiser, campaigning by his side and lending him one of her top political strategists.

That strategist, Howard Wolfson, said Mrs. Clinton wanted to throw her considerable political weight behind Mr. Lamont because the national Republican Party “is clearly invested in Ned Lamont’s defeat.”

“I think they are going to do what they can to see him defeated,” Mr. Wolfson said, adding that he was particularly concerned with “Bush-Cheney talking points.”

“They are going to attack him in the way Republicans do,” he said, “and he obviously needs to be and is going to be prepared.”

  What's In A Name? Opponents Fight Lieberman'S Use Of Democrat LabelAugust 28, 2006 09:58 Democratic, independent, unaffiliated, minor party and petition candidate.

What's in a political designation?

Plenty, if you're a veteran U.S. senator who lost his party's primary, petitioned his way onto the November ballot and needs to define his identity in the new campaign.

Despite losing the nomination Aug. 8 to Ned Lamont, it so far appears Sen. Joseph Lieberman legally can continue to refer to call himself an "independent Democrat" in his re-election bid.

Officials with the state and federal elections enforcement commissions last week said no laws prevent Lieberman from using the designation during appearances or in his advertising.

Late last week, the New Haven Registrar of Voters denied a request to revoke Lieberman's Democratic Party registration because he is running under the newly created Connecticut for Lieberman Party.

  Harris Attempts To Defuse ControversyAugust 28, 2006 09:39 I post these simply because Harris is so comical and because I can't stand her. She's like the true face of the Republican party and they keep trying to hide her.

Rep. Katherine Harris sought Saturday to smother a campaign brushfire stoked by an earlier claim that failure to elect Christians to public office would allow lawmakers to "legislate sin."

Harris, appearing at a gun show in Orlando, said she did not mean to offend non-Christians in her comments to the Florida Baptist Witness last week. She explained that she referred exclusively -- and repeatedly -- to Christians because she was being interviewed by the weekly journal of the Florida Baptist State Convention.

"My comments were specifically directed toward a Christian group," said Harris, a Republican senate candidate from Longboat Key.

Harris' campaign also released a statement Saturday. It said when Harris called the separation of church and state a "lie," she was addressing a "misperception that people of faith should not be actively involved in government."
  Grounds For Democratic November Optimism ContinueAugust 28, 2006 08:57 Some time ago I predicted that the Democrats would win control of both the House of Representatives and the Senate this November. Despite what I felt was a lucid explanation for that assertion, some readers wanted a more expanded explanation.

Voters are clearly in a sour mood. Not only did Connecticut Senator Joseph I. Lieberman lose his Democratic primary, but a freshman Republican in Michigan lost his House seat. And in what has to be a terrible humiliation, Governor Frank Murkowski came in a distant third in the Alaskan Republican primary. After 22 years in the Senate, this conservative Republican went home and sought out the Governorship. He won handily. But as soon as he took office, after having polled state GOP leaders as to who would be the best nominee to replace himself, he appointed his daughter, Senator Lisa Murkowski. Few saw her winning a full term in her own right but she did, although narrowly, in the Republican landslide election year of 2004. That convinced the Governor that he could be nominated and elected once more. The voters had a different idea. In the end, he had less than 20% of the primary vote. Other incumbents, although victorious, were given a hard time during their own primary elections.

Representative Chris Cannon (R-UT) comes to mind. This is the sixth-year itch election. Voters going back a century or more, with the exception of the 1998 elections, have punished the party in the White House by handing an average of 30-some seats to the opposition. 1998 was the one and only exception because President William J. Clinton campaigned hard and stoked up racial issues to the point that the Democrats picked up five seats. He told his minority audiences that if enough of them would vote for Democratic candidates Congress would never impeach him. That strategy seemed to work until Majority Whip Tom DeLay (R-TX) sent Members one-by-one to a special reading room where the FBI's dossier on Clinton was on tap. Even the skeptics returned from that reading room ready to indict the President of the United States. If the polls are correct then this November truly will be a sixth-year itch election.

  Stripping Lieberman of Democrat Posts?August 26, 2006 09:33 Pressure is mounting within the Senate Democratic caucus to strip Sen. Joseph Lieberman of senior committee positions if he defeats Democratic nominee Ned Lamont in Connecticut, but Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is expected to beat that back.

Lieberman will remain part of the Democratic caucus even though he would be elected as an independent after losing to Lamont in the Democratic primary. Many liberal senators, angry with Lieberman for supporting President Bush on Iraq, don't want him to chair a committee in a Democratic-controlled Senate. He now is senior Democrat on the Homeland Security Committee.

Reid says nothing publicly but is expected to save Lieberman. Disciplining fellow Democrats is not Reid's style, and Lieberman's vote could be crucial in taking Senate control from the Republicans. Reid and Lieberman also have a particularly close personal relationship.
  Cheney Protested in MontanaAugust 24, 2006 16:34 As expected, Vice President Dick Cheney’s visit to a Conrad Burns fundraiser Aug. 16 at The Lodge at Whitefish Lake in Whitefish was more than just a chance for Burns to raise funds.

“It’s great exposure for Senator Burns” and for the Republican Party’s 2006 campaign message, says Chuck Denowh, executive director of the Montana Republican Party.

According to an account of Cheney’s keynote speech in the Daily Inter Lake, Cheney told the Whitefish audience, “It is critically important to understand that this nation is fighting a war,” and that “What these Democrats are pushing now is the kind of defeat that has been tried in the past and failed.”

Montanans needed to reelect Burns, Cheney told the audience, so that Democrats’ “failed” policies would not be repeated.

But while Cheney got his licks in for Burns, the event also provided an opportunity for Montana Democrats to spread their message about what they see as failed Republican policies.
  Politically Incorrect: Republican Party Officials Use The Erroneous Term 'Democrat Party' Because It Irritates Their OpponentsAugust 23, 2006 21:20 From the president of the United States down to the Harris County clerk, Republican officials and party functionaries have taken to referring to the loyal opposition as the "Democrat Party," although there is no such thing. Voters, however, should not mistake simultaneous mass carelessness for the cause.

As detailed in the Aug. 7 issue of the New Yorker magazine, President Bush sent out an e-mail to millions of Americans accusing the "Democrat Party," rather than the Democratic Party, of seeking higher taxes. White House spokeswoman Emily A. Lawrimore suggested that Bush simply misspoke, although the incorrect usage appeared in a written communication presumably proofread before it went out. Lawrimore rejected the suggestion that the president and other Republican officials employ the erroneous term deliberately:

"Usually, conspiracy theories are at least a little entertaining, but this one is simply ridiculous," she wrote in a White House statement.

  Stem Cell Breakthrough May End Political LogjamAugust 23, 2006 17:09 Scientists announced today the creation of human embryonic stem cells using a technique that does not require the destruction of any embryos, a development that offers a path to break the political logjam over the highly touted but ethically troubled research.

The method, described in the journal Nature, involves taking a normal 3-day-old embryo with only eight to 10 cells and removing a single cell, which is then biochemically coaxed into becoming a colony that produces embryonic stem cells. The original embryo, despite missing one cell, is unharmed, thus avoiding concerns over destroying a potential life.

Fertility clinics have been removing cells from embryos created in vitro to screen them for genetic diseases and chromosomal abnormalities since 1990. Doctors estimate that at least 2,500 children alive today had a cell or two removed when they were embryos.

"Any use of human embryos for research purposes raises serious ethical concerns, but it is encouraging to see scientists at least making serious efforts to move away from research that involves the destruction of embryos," said White House spokeswoman Emily Lawrimore.
  Alaska Republican Governor Loses PrimaryAugust 23, 2006 08:49 Alaska Gov. Frank Murkowski lost the Republican primary to a former town mayor, who will face former two-term Democratic Gov. Tony Knowles in November.

Murkowski, who has been struggling with low approval ratings for months, lost to Sarah Palin, former mayor of the town of Wasilla, northeast of Anchorage, the Anchorage Daily News reported.

After winning 70 percent support of his party's vote in the 2002 primary, Murkowski began losing support after cutting a state longevity cash payment to seniors, appointing his daughter to his old U.S. Senate job and pursuing the lease of a state jet, the newspaper said.

  Senator Touts Language, Bashes Bush On DLI StopAugust 23, 2006 08:39 Sen. Barbara Boxer praised the Defense Language Institute and ripped the Bush administration on energy and the Iraq war Tuesday during a stop in Monterey.

The three-term Marin County Democrat spoke to 75 faculty and staff members and students for 20 minutes at the language institute -- stressing the military language school's importance in international affairs -- before offering more partisan views at a news conference.

Alluding to DLI's brush with closure during last year's military base realignment process, Boxer told the uniform-clad linguists: "This place is so special. It was a foolish idea in the first place."
  Bush: Iraq Straining US PsycheAugust 22, 2006 09:00 President George W. Bush said on Monday the Iraq war was "straining the psyche" of Americans and conceded it would be a major issue in November elections, when control of the U.S. Congress is up for grabs.

He also said he would not campaign for the Republican candidate in Connecticut where Sen. Joseph Lieberman lost the Democratic primary earlier this month largely because of his support for the Iraq war.

Lieberman, the 2000 Democratic vice presidential candidate, now is running as an independent to keep his Senate seat and led in a poll last week against the Democratic candidate, anti-war businessman Ned Lamont. The White House has declined to endorse the Republican challenger, Alan Schlesinger.
  Terrorism Plots Buoy Bush Poll RatingsAugust 21, 2006 15:51 The arrest of bomb plotters in London has helped buoy President Bush's approval rating and the prospects for Republican congressional candidates in November.

A USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Friday through Sunday put Bush's approval rating at 42%, the highest in six months. His approval rating on handling terrorism was 55%, the highest in more than a year.

Support for an unnamed Democratic congressional candidate over a Republican one has narrowed to 2 percentage points. For the past year, Democrats have led by much wider margins.

The success in disrupting a plot to bomb U.S. airliners "changes the way people evaluate the job that he's doing on terrorism," says Christopher Gelpi, a Duke political scientist who studies foreign policy and public opinion. "It also changes the subject of public discussion from the war in Iraq, which people are not very happy about." Gelpi cautioned the impact could be fleeting. "One event (in London) is likely to fade in the public mind," he says, "whereas the war in Iraq is an ongoing problem." Bush's rating on six other areas didn't significantly change.

At a news conference, the president pleaded for patience on Iraq, saying success there was essential to a democratic Middle East and U.S. security interests. He acknowledged that a daily drumbeat of news from Iraq about bombings and U.S. casualties was "straining the psyche of our country."
  The Macaca Heard Round The WorldAugust 16, 2006 22:08 No politician, let alone a rising star and presidential hopeful, wants to spend his time insisting that he's not a racist.

But this afternoon, Senator George Allen, R-VA — running for re-election and entertaining presidential hopes for 2008 — sat among 20 or so Indian Americans in a conference room at the Ritz Carlton in Tyson's Corner, VA, to show that he's not.

"It was a mistake, it was wrong, and it was hurtful to people," Allen said of remarks he'd made that the Indian Americans — and other critics — found racially offensive.

What he was referring to all started Friday in a southwestern corner of Virginia.

Speaking to supporters in a town called Breaks, Allen spotted a Democratic volunteer for his opponent's campaign.
  Lieberman Gets Tacit GOP SupportAugust 15, 2006 12:11 Connecticut's U.S. Senate race continued Monday along its unpredictable way: The White House declined to endorse the nominee of state Republicans - and a new "Vets for Freedom" group with ties to the GOP advertised its backing of incumbent Sen. Joe Lieberman, who is waging an independent campaign for re-election after losing last week's Democratic primary.

The group's full-page ad Monday in The Courant created an immediate stir: Former Democratic State Chairman George Jepsen, a top adviser to Democratic primary winner Ned Lamont, said the ad showed that "national Republicans, in their effort to help Joe Lieberman, clearly have a well-laid-out strategy to attack Ned Lamont."

However, Lieberman's spokesman, Dan Gerstein, said the incumbent had nothing to do with the veterans' group or the ad, and "it's a shame that the Lamont campaign feels there is a conspiracy behind everything."
  Republicans Distancing Themselves from BushAugust 14, 2006 08:46 When it comes to President Bush and the Republican Congress, Rep. Jim Gerlach says voters in his suburban Philadelphia district are in a "sour mood".
That's why when it comes to his reelection, the two-term incumbent says "the name of the game" is to convince those same voters that he can be independent of his own party. He has turned his standard line about Bush - "When I think he's wrong, I let him know" - into a virtual campaign slogan, repeated in interviews and TV ads.

"It is a combination of things, from the war in Iraq to gas prices to what they are experiencing in their local areas," Gerlach said of the surly electorate whose decision he will know on Nov. 7.

The Iraq war and Bush's low approval ratings have created trouble for Republicans in all regions. But nowhere is the GOP brand more scuffed than in the Northeast, where this year's circumstances are combining with long-term trends to endanger numerous incumbents.

Sounding very much like Gerlach, state Sen. Raymond Meier, a Republican running for an open seat in Upstate New York, observed: "People around here are anxious and concerned not just about the national state of affairs, but also their personal state of affairs. As a Republican candidate, the challenge is to show you have even a clue about what their lives are like."
  Lamont Decries Lieberman & Cheney Terror RemarksAugust 14, 2006 08:38 Democratic Senate nominee Ned Lamont, the anti-war candidate who toppled Sen. Joe Lieberman in the Connecticut primary, says he was surprised by Lieberman and Vice President Dick Cheney's claims that his Iraq views could embolden terrorists.

"My God, here we have a terrorist threat against hearth and home and the very first thing that comes out of their mind is how can we turn this to partisan advantage. I find that offensive," Lamont said in an interview Sunday with The Associated Press.

After British officials disclosed they had thwarted a terrorist airline bombing plot on Thursday, Lieberman warned that Lamont's call for a phased withdrawal of troops from Iraq would be "taken as a tremendous victory" by terrorists.

Cheney suggested Wednesday that Lamont's victory might encourage "the al-Qaida types" who want to "break the will of the American people in terms of our ability to stay in the fight and complete the task."

Lamont said Lieberman's swipe at his candidacy "sounded an awful lot" like Cheney.
  Terror Plot Could Have Impact On US ElectionsAugust 11, 2006 16:48 When are the American people going to wake up and realize that "Iraq War" is not equal to "Fighting Terrorism"? The fact that the Republicans exploit fear to win monetary support for the Iraq war is despicable... the fact that Americans buy into it is worse...

The foiling of the terror plot in Britain targeting U.S. airliners could have a political impact on U.S. congressional elections in November.

The plot to detonate homemade bombs on U.S. airliners has refocused public attention on the threat of terrorism, and brought words of warning from President Bush. "It is a mistake to believe there is no threat to the United States of America," said the president.

The arrests in connection with the terror plot came only two days after dramatic election results from the northeastern state of Connecticut, where the war in Iraq was a pivotal issue.

Political newcomer Ned Lamont narrowly defeated veteran Senator Joseph Lieberman in the Democratic Party primary by focusing on Lieberman's support for the Iraq war.
  Voter Anger That Cuts Both WaysAugust 09, 2006 22:21 The usual political torpor of August was shattered this week by the news that three congressional incumbents had lost their races in a single day. There were special forces at work in the contests in which two Democrats -- Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Rep. Cynthia McKinney of Georgia -- and Michigan Republican Rep. Joe Schwarz were defeated. But taken together they are the strongest signal yet of voter dissatisfaction with the status quo in Washington.

McKinney, a combative politician, lost (for the second time in her career) largely because of her unpleasant personality. Schwarz, a physician and freshman House member who had headed the John McCain forces in Michigan, fell victim to a heavily financed right-wing effort to punish him for his support of stem cell research.
  Lieberman Loses... and Becomes a Sore LoserAugust 08, 2006 21:58 Senator Joseph Lieberman conceded defeat in the Connecticut Democratic primary, losing to businessman Ned Lamont in a race that turned into a referendum on the incumbent's support for the war in Iraq.

Lieberman said he intended to file papers to run as an independent in the November general election, setting up a three-way contest.

``Tomorrow we launch a new campaign to unite the people of Connecticut,'' Lieberman said at his election headquarters in Hartford.

The race drew anti-war activists, such as the advocacy group, who sought to make the campaign a referendum on President George W. Bush's policies.
  Ney's Ohio Replacement May Be IneligibleAugust 08, 2006 12:35 The leading Republican candidate to replace scandal-scarred Rep. Bob Ney on the November ballot may be ineligible, party officials said Tuesday, complicating GOP efforts to assure a smooth transition for the fall campaign.

"As far as I know, I have a green light," said state Sen. Joy Padgett, as party lawyers reviewed a state law that bars politicians who lose one primary from entering another one during the same year.

The developments came one day after Ney announced he would abandon his race for re-election, acting under pressure from party officials who feared the loss of his seat. The six-term lawmaker has come under scrutiny for his ties to Jack Abramoff, a lobbyist at the center of a congressional corruption scandal.

Ney has not been charged, and denies all wrongdoing.
  GOP Drops Challenge To Delay On BallotAugust 08, 2006 10:50 Texas Republicans abandoned their court fight to replace former House majority leader Tom DeLay on the November ballot yesterday after being turned back at the Supreme Court.

The decision came after Justice Antonin Scalia rejected Texas Republicans' request to block an appeals court ruling saying DeLay's name should remain on the ballot.

``I think all our legal avenues are exhausted in terms of affecting the ruling prior to the election," said Jim Bopp Jr., the attorney who argued the Republican Party's case to allow party officials to substitute another candidate for DeLay. Under indictment on money laundering charges in Texas, DeLay won a March primary election that made him the GOP nominee for Congress from his home district near Houston. In June, he resigned from Congress and said he would not seek reelection.

Democrats had sued to keep DeLay on the ballot, with the former lawmaker's legal troubles becoming a symbol for claims of Republican corruption.
  Key Republican Quits Amid ScandalAugust 07, 2006 13:45 A leading US Republican lawmaker facing corruption allegations has said he will not run for re-election in November.
Ohio congressman Bob Ney said he would stand down from the seat he has held for 12 years because of his family.

But the Democrats, who put the focus on Mr Ney as part of their election effort to paint the Republicans as corrupt, said he had been forced out.

Prosecutors say Mr Ney took gifts and trips at the expense of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff. He denies it.

  "Peace Mom" Cindy Sheehan Resumes Protest At Bush RanchAugust 07, 2006 08:50 A year after her first war protest in President Bush's adopted hometown attracted thousands and reinvigorated the nation's peace movement, Cindy Sheehan resumed her vigil yesterday.

Under the blazing Texas sun, Ms. Sheehan and more than 50 demonstrators again marched a mile and a half toward Mr. Bush's ranch, stopping at a roadblock. As Secret Service agents stood silently, Ms. Sheehan held up her California driver's license and said she wanted to meet with the president.

"It doesn't say my new address, but I do live here now," said Ms. Sheehan, who lives in Berkeley, Calif., and recently bought land in Crawford for war protests. "My name is Cindy and Bush killed my son."
  GOP Moderates Feeling HeatAugust 04, 2006 09:09 Rob Simmons, the Republican congressman with a Democratic-voting district, works the Rotary Club lunch crowd at Angellino's restaurant with gusto, sporting an American flag tie and loads of good humor.

Over angel hair pasta smothered in red sauce, he tells the local community leaders that his mother is a lifelong Democrat, his wife is an unaffiliated voter and his daughter is a Republican.

"And I love them all," he says gleefully, underscoring his message that party labels are irrelevant to his work.

Democrats, however, beg to differ. They argue that Simmons happily supports President Bush's agenda on a range of wrong-headed policies from Iraq to energy to tax cuts.

"He can come back to Connecticut and really try to jive talk people about his differences with Bush, but when he goes back to Washington, he's there for the president," said Joe Courtney, Simmons' Democratic challenger.

  The Fight Of Joe’s Political LifeAugust 04, 2006 08:58 Here at FTR, we're definitely hoping to see Sen. Lieberman go down next week.

With less than a week remaining in the campaign for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate, many journalists and political analysts have taken to calling this the race for Senator Joseph Lieberman’s political life. In less than five weeks time, Senator Lieberman has seen a double digit lead over his challenger evaporate. According to the latest Quinnipiac Poll, Lieberman trails Ned Lamont by four points, and with a 3.8% margin of error, the poll places them in a statistical dead heat. In response to the increasing popularity of his opponent, Lieberman has collected the requisite 7,500 signatures and ensured his placement, should he lose the primary, as an independent candidate on the ballot in November’s general election. This is a bold move for a notable political figure like Senator Lieberman, who has served in the U.S. Senate for the past 18 years, and was first elected to office in the state of Connecticut in 1970. His decision is also a further testament to the closeness of a campaign where both sides are pulling out all the stops to win.

On Monday, July 24th, former President Clinton was in Waterbury campaigning for Lieberman at a rally. His endorsement of the Senator is a historical rarity; former Presidents almost never endorse candidates before they win their party’s nomination. Lieberman’s challenger, Greenwich millionaire and businessman Ned Lamont, has downplayed the importance of the endorsement, stressing that both the President and his wife, Senator Clinton, have vowed to support whomever wins the nomination next week. However, for Lieberman’s campaign, the Clinton endorsement carried much symbolic importance. The Senator has drawn fire for his conservative stances on some issues, and Lamont has continually challenged his commitment to the Democratic Party.
  Court Rules Delay's Name Stays On BallotAugust 03, 2006 14:52 A federal appeals court panel on Thursday refused to let Texas Republicans replace Tom DeLay's name on the November congressional ballot.

The finding upheld a July ruling by a federal judge that the ballot must list DeLay, who won a March primary before resigning from Congress on June 9. He now lives in Virginia but is awaiting trial in Texas state court on money laundering and conspiracy charges alleging that illegal corporate cash helped pay for legislative campaigns in 2002.

Republicans want to pick another nominee to face Democrat Nick Lampson in November. Democrats sued to keep DeLay on the ballot. Keeping him on the ballot gives them an easier race and bolsters their attempts to make the indicted former House majority leader their symbol for claims of Republican corruption.