In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
Saturday, August 8, 2020

A government unto himself

Dick Cheney was starting his second term in Congress when I arrived in Washington in 1981 as Press Secretary to then-Congressman Paul Findley of Illinois.

But Cheney was already on a fast-track to power, moving into chairmanship of the Republican Policy Committee after just two years on the Hill. He may have been a newbie in Congress but Cheney was an insider, a former White House chief of Staff with the proverbial friends in high places.

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Thompson gets ex-wife, ex-girlfriend vote

Things must be going well for prospective presidential candidate Fred Thompson because even his ex-wife and former girlfriends are endorsing him.

One-by-one they’ve said the Tennessee Republican is their man — at least for president, according to London’s Sunday Times newspaper.

The former senator and Hollywood actor is to hold the first fund-raising event for his potential campaign on Tuesday in Nashville, ahead of stops in early primary states of South Carolina and New Hampshire this week.

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Supremes side with special interests

The Supreme Court Monday loosened campaign finance restrictions in a ruling on free speech that will give lobby groups a louder voice in television ads for next year’s presidential election.

In a 5-4 ruling, the nation’s highest tribunal found that the rights to free speech of interest groups had been unfairly curbed by a law that limited their influence in the final stretch of electioneering.

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Dick Cheney’s own branch of government

The White House has had to defend Vice President Cheney’s decision to opt out of a presidential order regulating the handling of secret information by the executive branch. Cheney’s reasoning: His office is not really part of the executive branch.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino insists that this is a “non-issue,” but the vice president’s effort to create a separate branch of government for himself has become one, and given congressional Democrats an opening to launch another investigation.

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Bong hits for the first amendment

In 1969, the Supreme Court ruled that students do not “shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate.” It was a good ruling with exceptions that allowed school officials to bar speech that advocated dangerous or illegal conduct or was substantially disruptive.

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Political anger, invective on the rise

Politics has long been a dirty business but many say the growth of the Internet and increase of web sites that deal with politics have turned political debate into a trash-talking free-for-all.

News web sites, including Capitol Hill Blue, have struggled to find a balance between encouraging open discussion of political issues and controlling the increase in invective that threatens to take over political debate.

Political discussion boards have become hotbeds of insults, threats, anger and hate.

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The blogger-in-chief

If Republican Fred Thompson enters the presidential race next month as expected, the actor and former senator will be aiming to add another title to a crowded resume — blogger-in-chief.

Thompson has been contributing frequently to conservative Web sites as he gears up for a 2008 presidential bid, posting thoughts on topics ranging from the French election to the Middle East and the immigration debate.

While the Internet and blogs are a basic cornerstone of any modern campaign communications strategy, Thompson has been notably enthusiastic about expressing his thoughts online.

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McCain: What, me worry?

Republican presidential candidate John McCain on Monday dismissed polls that show him slipping into single digits, arguing that his campaign is going through the typical ups and downs and will be fine this fall.

In an interview with The Associated Press, the Arizona senator also defended his support for a bipartisan immigration bill, a stance that has undercut his bid in early voting South Carolina.

The top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee acknowledged that his backing for the Iraq war has hurt his candidacy elsewhere in the country.

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GOP Senator says Bush’s war is failing

Sen. Richard Lugar, a senior Republican and a reliable vote for President Bush on the war, said that Bush’s Iraq strategy was not working and that the U.S. should downsize the military’s role.

The unusually blunt assessment Monday deals a political blow to Bush, who has relied heavily on GOP support to stave off anti-war legislation.

It also comes as a surprise. Most Republicans have said they were willing to wait until September to see if Bush’s recently ordered troop buildup in Iraq was working.

“In my judgment, the costs and risks of continuing down the current path outweigh the potential benefits that might be achieved,” Lugar, R-Ind., said in a Senate floor speech. “Persisting indefinitely with the surge strategy will delay policy adjustments that have a better chance of protecting our vital interests over the long term.”

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