US Politics

  DeLay Case Fomenting Dissent Amongst RepubsSeptember 30, 2005 00:00 The indictment of Tom DeLay on conspiracy charges is encouraging dissent and fraction among House Republicans. Many moderates and ethical conservatives are dissatisfied with the reluctance of House leadership to take action against DeLay in the wake of his many ethics violations.
  Senate Still Wasting Money on Drugs in BaseballSeptember 30, 2005 00:00 The Senate is still wasting taxpayer money investigating the use of illegal drugs in baseball. Is this a stopgap to avoid the topic of drug testing for the Senate and White House?
  DeLay Indictment Another Speed Bump for RepublicansSeptember 29, 2005 00:00 The indictment of Tom DeLay for conspiracy comes at a bad time for Republicans who are seeing their approval ratings drop through the floor.
  Members of Congress Push for Halliburton SuspensionSeptember 28, 2005 00:00 19 members of Congress are requesting that Halliburton be suspended from receiving further government contracts until allegations of fraud and waste are cleared up.
  DeLay IndictedSeptember 28, 2005 00:00 House majority leader Tom DeLay has been indicted for conspiracy. The charges stem from DeLay's involvement with a political action committee that has been charged with inappropriately using business political contributions to influence Texas elections.
  DeLay Prosecutor Has Charged More Democrats than RepublicansSeptember 28, 2005 00:00 Although Republican's have attempted to smear Texas prosecutor Ronnie Earle as a partisan pitbull, in fact, Earle, a Democrat, has prosecuted far more Democrat than Republican politicians in his career.
  Brown Blames Others on Katrina ResponseSeptember 27, 2005 00:00 Former FEMA head Michael Brown blamed local and state governments for the government's poor response to hurricane Katrina.
  Bush Supporters Can't Follow HimSeptember 26, 2005 00:00 Even this Bush supporter seems to be getting lost amidst the political showboating and press opportunities of the Bush administration. All show, no substance.
  Religious Activists in Government Threated Our SocietySeptember 23, 2005 00:00 This writer states that we need protection from the majority that would cram a particular version of religion down our throats. Amen.
  Extremists May not See their Bad SidesSeptember 23, 2005 00:00 Psychology shows that extremists may not realize their bad points because they are caught up in a worldview that reaffirms their beliefs to the exclusion of alternatives.
  Bush's Mother Didn't Help Him OutSeptember 23, 2005 00:00 Barbara Bush's insensitive, if often misrepresented, comments in Texas several weeks ago only furthered the realization in many American's minds that George Bush is not out for the little guy.

  Neil Bush Meets With Wanted RussianSeptember 23, 2005 00:00 Indicted and exiled Russian tycoon Boris Berezovsky met with Neil Bush to discuss an educational initiative. The Russian is wanted for arrest in Russia and Bush's meeting with him has caused controversy in Latvia.
  Frist Under Insider Trading InvestigationSeptember 23, 2005 00:00 Senate majority leader Bill Frist appears to be under investigation for insider trading. Frist divested himself of large amounts of a hospital company's stock shortly before the company announced a drop in earnings.

  US voting machines should give paper receipt: commissionSeptember 20, 2005 00:00 WASHINGTON (AFP) - Electronic voting machines used in US elections should give paper receipts to avoid suspicions of fraud, an electoral reform commission, led by ex-president Jimmy Carter and former secretary of state James Baker, said.

The independent commission also said that the voting system should be made more uniform across the United States. Individual states, and sometimes counties within a state, currently choose their own methods of voting.

Carter, a Democrat, and Baker, a Republican, were named to lead the commission after problems with the presidential election in November 2004 in the key state of Ohio.

They made 87 recommendations including the paper receipts for electronic touch-screen voting machines, which are becoming increasingly popular. Carter said this would make it easier to check fraud and confirm disputed results.

"It's a simple technological matter," Carter said.

"Nevada did it this past year -- so that there can be some comparison on the part of the voter: 'This is the way I touched the screen. Did my ballot comply?' And they look at the paper ballot."

Under the commission's proposals, random audits would be conducted to compare electronic ballots with paper ballots. "This would go a long way to deter any kind of temptation to fraud," Carter said.

The commission also said Americans should show a photo identity document, such as a driving licence, before being allowed to cast votes. For those without driving licenses, states should offer identification cards to qualified voters free of charge.

Baker said if voters failed to show photo identification, they could vote with a provisional ballot and later present the identification.

"Every one of the recommendations in our report, whether they are recommendations to the Congress or recommendations to the states, are designed to improve confidence in our system of federal elections," Baker said.

The commission attempted to strike a balance between ensuring access to voting is free of obstacles while preventing ballot fraud, Baker said.

The proposed photo identification requirement drew prompt criticism from some Democrats in Congress who said the rule could be abused to discriminate against members of minority groups, the poor and the elderly.

The American Civil Liberties Union also expressed concern that a recommendation for a central data base of voter information could pose a threat to Americans' privacy rights.

During the last presidential election, won by Republican nominee George W. Bush, some voters complained about electronic machines in Ohio. Democratic activists also said intimidatory tactics had been used against ethnic or racial minorities to dissuade them from voting.

Senator John Kerry, the losing Democratic candidate, said he would fight to get a national voting system introduced.

  Downing Street Memo Leak in the SpotlightSeptember 19, 2005 00:00 The Downing Street memo, that suggested that the Bush administration was fixing intelligence to prepare for armed conflict in Iraq, and the Valerie Plame case come back to the spotlight this week as the House considers several resolutions designed to retrieve more information about the two cases. The Republican-controlled house is expected to stifle the resolutions.
  Hurricane Reconstruction Effort to Remain DecentralizedSeptember 19, 2005 00:00 The Katrina recovery effort will remain decentralized, in part to prevent a single powerful official from being able to call attention to failures in the process. This process, pushed forward by Dick Cheney, is consistent with the administrations style of 'just do it' instead of 'do it right.'
  Bush Lampooned with Photos and Cartoons on InternetSeptember 11, 2005 00:00 After hurricane Katrina, President Bush has been repeated lampooned on the internet through doctored photos and cartoons.
  Go F*** Yourself, Mr. CheneySeptember 09, 2005 00:00 Vice President Dick Cheney was greeted by heckling yesterday as he toured storm damaged areas in the South. Cheney arrived on the ground more than a week after the hurricane hit.
  DeLay Indictments Hitting Closer to HomeSeptember 09, 2005 00:00 A Texas grand jury has indicted Tom DeLay's Texans for a Republican Majority Political Action Committee and a business associated with the PAC for illegally using corporate money to influence state elections. The DA prosecuting the case has indicated that he would have asked for the indictment of DeLay except for jurisdictional issues.
  Compilation of Public Diplomacy releases and quotesSeptember 09, 2005 00:00 Check it out... interesting.
  'K' is for TroubleSeptember 07, 2005 00:00 Hurricane Katrina seems to have stirred up a hornets' nest of resentment and trouble for the Bush Administration. From vacationing Presidents, Vice Presidents, and Sec's of State to poor responses from FEMA, delays in deploying military resources, and bad soundbytes, the Bush Administration is facing a new quagmire, named New Orleans.
  False Deadline for Roberts' Approval ProcessSeptember 07, 2005 00:00 President Bush's Oct. 3 deadline for the confirmation of judge John Roberts as the next Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court is another example of the Administration framing a political argument in such a way as to make it seem plausible. There is no real deadline for the Senate, whose objective is to make a well informed decision on who should lead our highest court for the next several decades.
  Holt Calls for Full Investigation into Plame CaseSeptember 06, 2005 00:00 US Representative calls for a complete investigation into the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame in this blog.
  Katrina Response to be InvestigatedSeptember 06, 2005 00:00 While claiming not to be 'playing the blame game,' both President Bush and Congress have pledged separate investigations into the federal government's poor response to the devastation caused by hurricane Katrina.
  Mixing Religion and Politics in OhioSeptember 06, 2005 00:00 Evangelical Christian groups are mobilizing in Ohio, perhaps after being frightened by recent voting results in the state. The groups are mobilizing "patriot pastors" who will solicit new voters from the Christian community.
  Rove-Libby Leak Treason Should not DieSeptember 02, 2005 00:00 Another article discussing the timeline and malicious motivations that led to the leak of Valerie Plame's name to the press by Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.