September 19, 2007

More On D.c. Voting Rights

Ross Douthat takes a swipe at TNR's editorial stance on the constitutionality of the D.C. voting-rights bill. He quotes our position on the issue: McConnell and Bush base their opposition on ostensibly constitutional grounds, arguing that the Constitution grants congressional representation only to states, which, of course, the District of Columbia is not. But the legislation, as it's crafted, addresses these concerns--since it provides for expedited judicial review of the bill if it's challenged after becoming law.

September 18, 2007


AP: COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Former President George H.W. Bush backs John McCain's efforts to increase support for the Iraq war in a new video, a telecast that aides to both men say shouldn't be construed as an endorsement of McCain's White House bid. On Monday night, the former president appeared in the video shown at South Carolina's military college, The Citadel, during the final stop of the Arizona senator's "No Surrender" tour. "The bottom line is we must persevere; we must not surrender; we must not quit and run away.

A Sad Day For Utah. . . .

. . . and the District of Columbia. The D.C. voting rights bill--which would have added two seats to the U.S. House of Representatives, with one going to D.C. and the other to Utah--has died in the Senate. From the WaPo: The Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and the White House have strongly criticized the legislation.

September 17, 2007

Crocker Speaks Out, Again

Last week, Eve reported that the real news at the Petraeus testimony came from Ambassador Ryan Crocker, who painted a much bleaker picture of the situation in Iraq than essentially any other administration official to date. Today Crocker is in the news again, this time for condemning the Department of Homeland Security's resettlement process for Iraqi refugees.

September 14, 2007

On Clintonism

Following up on Ryan's New Yorker piece about the Democratic candidates' efforts to deal with Bill Clinton's legacy, Ed Kilgore has an insightful post noting the similarities and differences between the critiques of Clintonism offered by Dick Gephardt and Ted Kennedy in 1997 and those offered by Edwards and Obama today.

Newt's Handicapping

Granted, Newt has a vested interest in dumping on the current crop of GOP presidential candidates. But I think the critique of the Republican field that he gave to National Journal is pretty smart: Q: Let's talk about the Republicans who are in the race, starting with former Governor Mitt Romney. Is he the kind of visionary you think the country needs? Gingrich: Look, I think there are three or four possible Republican nominees -- [Rudy] Giuliani, Romney, [Fred] Thompson, [Mike] Huckabee, and, based on his recent re-energizing, [John] McCain. All of them are smart people.

Obama's Iraq Week

Obama's swing through Iowa was all about Iraq. After delivering his initial address in Clinton, he held four town hall-style forums in the eastern part of the state. Before taking questions he opened each event with a 15-minute condensation of his Wednesday Iraq speech. His campaign also distributed Iraq-specific campaign brochures to supporters. One of them is headlined, "BARACK OBAMA: Opposed to the Iraq War from the Very Start." Printed on one side are the particulars of Obama's plans for a US withdrawal from the country.

September 13, 2007

An Old Ruling On A New Case

In Sweatt v. Painter, the Supreme Court noted that a new law school could never, whatever its material endowment, acquire those qualities which are incapable of objective measurement but which make for greatness in a law school.

September 12, 2007

This Week's Sign Of The Apocalypse

From an email I just received promoting Digger Phelps's new book, Undertaker's Son: Life Lessons from a Coach: Head basketball coach of Notre Dame at age 29, a position he held for more than two decades with a 100 percent graduation rate, Richard "Digger" Phelps was an attention-getting figure in The White House's anti-drug program, part-time ambassador, is an adored ESPN commentator, and a possible Presidential candidate. [Emphasis added.] Nooooooo! --Jason Zengerle

Obama V Clinton In Clinton

Obama in Clinton, Iowa, just now: We do hope that the headline after we leave is, "Clinton Endorses Obama." An Obama aide assures me the location for today's Iraq speech was not chosen to make a pun-y point. Update: Here's the key Hillary-smacking portion of the speech: George Bush was wrong. The people who attacked us on 9/11 were in Afghanistan, not Iraq....