Brownback details ‘hatred’ of Clintons

Sam Brownback says he harbored a “hatred” of Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton until he experienced a religious awakening in the mid-1990s.

Brownback, a Republican presidential hopeful, details in a new book how the change in outlook led him to make a stunning apology to Hillary Clinton a few years later during a Senate prayer breakfast.

“I was considering what I should say when I confronted all the anger that I held for the Clintons,” the Kansas senator writes in the book, “From Power to Purpose: A Remarkable Journey of Faith and Compassion.”

“I thought, I hate them for what they are doing to the country and I feel justified in hating them for it,” he writes.

But Brownback says he realized there is never justification for hating someone regardless of their actions.

He told the prayer breakfast audience that he used to have a “hatred for Bill and Hillary” because of their politics. He spotted Sen. Clinton in the crowd and, speaking directly to her, said he “realized that those thoughts of hatred were wrong. I apologized to her for them. I don’t know what she thought, but I believe it made a difference.”

Religion permeates nearly every corner of Brownback’s book, written with Jim Nelson Black and officially slated for release July 3. His soul searching began in 1995, hastened by two dramatic events in his personal life. His marriage was in real trouble — he was “on track” to getting divorced — as he devoted all his energy to the conservative agenda that fueled the Republican takeover of the House in 1994.

Even more traumatic was his 1995 bout with cancer and surgery to remove malignant melanoma from his right side. Brownback says he finally found peace when he resolved to devote himself to God.

“One night I got down on my knees and said ‘OK, Lord, that’s it. I give up. It’s all Yours,'” Brownback writes.

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An example of Mitt Romney’s crisis management approach has turned into something of a political problem for the Republican presidential contender.

Romney placed his family dog, an Irish setter named Seamus, into a kennel lashed to the top of his station wagon for a 12-hour family trip from Boston to Ontario in 1983. Despite being shielded by a wind screen the former Massachusetts governor erected, Seamus expressed his discomfort with a diarrhea attack.

Now the story, recounted this week in a Boston Globe profile of Romney, has touched off howls of outrage from bloggers and animal rights activists even though it was presented in the story as an example of Romney’s coolness under trying circumstances.

When Romney’s eldest son, Tagg, and his four brothers complained about the brown runoff down the back windshield, their father quietly pulled the car over, borrowed a gas station hose and sprayed down both the dog and the kennel before returning to the road.

“Massachusetts animal cruelty laws specifically prohibit anyone from carrying an animal `in or upon a vehicle, or otherwise, in an unnecessarily cruel or inhuman manner or in a way and manner which might endanger the animal carried thereon,'” wrote Steve Benen in a post on the blog “Crooks and Liars.”

Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, told Time magazine’s “Swampland” blog: “If you wouldn’t strap your child to the roof of your car, you have no business doing that to the family dog!”

Romney dismissed any outcry about the 24-year-old incident, saying the dog enjoyed his rooftop perch.

“He scrambled up there every time we went on trips,” Romney said at a campaign stop in Pittsburgh Thursday. “He got it all by himself and enjoyed it.”

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Republican presidential hopeful John McCain, backer of an immigration bill, said Friday that its collapse in the Senate was a difficult experience.

The Arizona senator said he regrets lawmakers weren’t able to legalize millions of undocumented immigrants and fortify the border. McCain was in Chicago for fundraisers.

“It was a very tough and bruising experience and so I obviously regret we were unable to succeed, and I worry about the fact that we now have still the status quo,” McCain said. “Twelve million people in our country, we don’t know where they are and what they’re doing. So by blocking action we have now silent amnesty, and that’s unfortunate.”

Meanwhile, in Florida, the Republican Party chairman challenged those who opposed the bill to come up with a solution beyond just building a fence on the border.

“The voices of negativity now have a responsibility to come up with an answer,” Sen. Mel Martinez, R-Fla., said at a gathering of more than 1,000 Hispanic officials.

“How will you fix the situation to make peoples’ lives better? How will you continue to grow the economy? How will we bring people out of the shadows for our national security and for the sake of being a country that is just?” he asked.

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., the lone Republican presidential candidate to attend the three-day conference, said the legislation won’t be revived.

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The host committee for the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver is still about $1.5 million short of a $7.5 million fundraising goal it set for June 1.

“We have $6 million in the bank. We have other donations committed. Now we’re just trying to decipher how much is in cash and how much is in-kind,” committee member Steve Farber said Friday.

Farber said he was confident the committee had enough donations.

The Democratic National Committee and the host committee hoped to raise $40 million in cash and $15 million in in-kind donations by June 2008, with a goal of raising $7.5 million by June 1, 2007.

The host committee missed that first goal by $2 million but has since closed the shortfall by $500,000. The convention is scheduled Aug. 25-28, 2008.

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New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg declared himself in “great health” on Friday and said his heart surgery years ago, which was not disclosed until this week, was so minor that he was out on the golf course soon after.

In his first public comments about the 2000 surgery, in which he had two coronary arterial stents installed to relieve blockage, the 65-year-old mayor brushed it off as a routine operation.

“It’s a very common thing, and I’m in great health and there are lots of people my age that have it,” Bloomberg told reporters. “My recollection is I went out and played golf the next day — it was that serious.”

The news surfaced this week as Bloomberg has been mentioned as a potential independent candidate for president.

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Associated Press writer Glen Johnson in Boston, Megan Reichgott in Chicago and Laura Wides-Munos in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., contributed to this report.

7 Responses to "Brownback details ‘hatred’ of Clintons"

  1. Sonorous Pest  July 2, 2007 at 12:51 pm

    Sonorous pest

    Tell me mommy why do so many people of ill rupte get religion? Most criminals go to prison and find God is that where God is mommy? Do we all have to go to prision to find God? Do I have to go to prison to find God mommy?
    Or is Senator Brownback try to get closer to the illigitmate evangilist, tell me mommy what’s the truth?
    You got me Son it’s just politics as usual.

  2. Bill Jonke  June 30, 2007 at 11:22 am

    Oh, there’s a book I’m going to run right out to Funk and Wagnall’s bookstore to buy!

  3. Carl Nemo  June 30, 2007 at 11:37 am

    Yep, that book is gunna be a real “barn burner” with all of Sam’s revelations; i.e., his epiphany concerning the Clintonistas… :)) I’ll order at least 13 copies. :|

    Nemo **==

  4. Bill Jonke  June 30, 2007 at 12:35 pm

    I’ll donate $666.00 to Brownback’s campaign.

  5. lyleblog  June 30, 2007 at 12:12 pm

    What became of the “pulpit brigade” awakening when Brownback joined Kyl and Graham in lieing in an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in Hamden v. Rumsfeld? Inserting an 18 minute debate that never occurred on the Senate Floor? Justifying it by noting that voters were too stupid too understand how the Senate operates? I don’t want any of his ‘religion’ around me. Justice Stevens noted the phony insertion in his decision.
    __________________________________________________________
    Free speech. The right to peaceably assemble. The right to seek redress from your government.
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  6. Sandra Price  July 2, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    I have to warn you folks that just prior to the 2006 election, Senator Brownback was ready to put a bill onto the floor to make an Amendment to the Constitution to ban all Death With Dignity laws currently found in Oregon and on the way in 3 more states. He wanted no individual to have the right to ask for the magic pill to stop the agony of dying in pain. This is a decision to be made by the Federal Government. I believe this threat to our dignity may have been why so many Social Conservatives lost their seats.

    My organization “Compassion and Choices” was flagged by their single lobbyist that this plan was in the works. These Christians want to rule every single American citizen and we must stop this assault on our individual freedoms.

    This is not euthanasia but a request for a prescription from the doctor to the dying patient for him to take when he is ready.

    This is politics at its very worst. Take a look at the Republican candidates and tell me which one will allow us our death with dignity?

  7. flusman007  July 2, 2007 at 9:29 pm

    While Senator Brownback is guided by the sanctity of religion and marriage he has proven to be easily manipulated/gullible sponsoring the most undemocratic unconstitutional law in the history of the USA.

    Brownback fell for the spin and smear campaign of some very radical feminists by sponsoring the International Romance Regulation Act along with the ultra liberal Senator Cantwell (D-WA). The promoters of the law(money hungry NGO’s)used emotional hysteria portraying American men who marry foreign women as serial rapists and wife beaters. But the only reliable scientific evidence done on abuse rates involving International marriages was an INS study done in 1999 that found miniscule abuse rates.

    Brownback’s romance law allows the US government to interfere with the universal right of American citizen to say “hello” to a women in a foreign country without first submitting criminal and personal information before they can communicate by e mail, fax or telephone. Additional background checks are required before the couple can marry in the USA. (Ironically not for National Security).

    Brownback’s law represents a haunting reincarnation of a German law enacted Germany in 1935 that required background checks for marriage enacted (supposedly) to protect women. The real purpose of the German law was to prevent Jews from marrying Germans while Brownback’s law was promoted by American feminists to prevent foreign women with traditional family values from marrying American men.

    Dave Root

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