Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Palin Details Special Needs Policies


Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin holds her infant son, Trig, who has Down syndrome, as she stands on stage with her husband, Todd, during the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minn. (Susan Walsh / Associated Press)

By Juliet Eilperin
GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin outlined for the first time today how she and John McCain would aid children with special needs if they occupied the White House next year.

In a speech in Pittsburgh, Penn., Palin pledged that a McCain-Palin administration would fully fund the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, exempt disability programs from the domestic discretionary spending freeze they plan to institute next year, and will provide school vouchers so families can send their special needs children to the school of their choice.

"Too often, even in our own day, children with special needs have been set apart and excluded," said Palin, whose infant son Trig has Down syndrome. "Too often, state and federal laws add to their challenges, instead of removing barriers and opening new paths of opportunity. Too often, they are made to feel that there is no place for them in the life of our country, that they don't count or have nothing to contribute. This attitude is a grave disservice to these beautiful children, to their families, and to our country -- and I will work to change it."

While the Alaska governor has spoken repeatedly on the stump about how families with disabled children can expect her to be "a friend and an advocate" if elected next month, she had not outlined what policies she would pursue as vice president until today.

Palin's pledge to fully fund IDEA would direct billions to the program over the next few years, though her proposal would not immediately cover the entire gap in funding that exists now.

Thirty-three years ago, the federal government adopted a system in which it would shoulder 40 percent of the burden of educating disabled children, while states would fund the remaining 60 percent. At the moment, the U.S. government spends just under $11 billion annually on the program, whereas it would have to devote $26 billion a year to live up to its initial commitment.

A Palin aide who asked not to be identified said that the campaign would ask to spend $45 billion to fund IDEA over five years, though the funding would be backloaded and start at $3 billion a year, rather than the $15 billion a year required to fully fund the program.

In her speech, Palin said the federal government could finance the new investment by taking some of $18 billion it spends each year on earmarks, specific projects that are designated by members of Congress.

"That's more than the shortfall to fully fund the IDEA," she said. "And where does a lot of that earmark money end up? It goes to projects having little or nothing to do with the public good -- things like fruit fly research in Paris, France, or a public policy center named for the guy who got the earmark. In our administration, we're going to reform and refocus. We're going to get our federal priorities straight, and fulfill our country's commitment to give every child opportunity and hope in life."

As soon as Palin spoke, Democrats issued a long list of examples in which McCain had voted against fully funding IDEA and other special education programs. They also noted that scientific studies involving fruit flies are helping further researchers' understanding of autism, a disorder that both Palin and McCain speak of frequently while campaigning. Palin's nephew has autism, something she mentioned in today's speech.

"Tragically, McCain and conservatives have spent their careers voting against the exact policies and programs Palin discussed today," wrote Eddie Vale, a spokesman for the advocacy group Progressive Accountability, in an e-mail.

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 24, 2008; 5:00 PM ET
Categories:  Sarah Palin  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Obama Campaign Offers Bullish Field Report
Next: McCain Volunteer's Claim of Attack Unravelled, Online and Off

Comments

To the economics professor: I have lived in both the UK and France. When socialist governments soaked the rich... the rich moved to Switzerland, the Cayman Islands, etc., etc. If taxes become punitive for the rich, the rich have the means to put their assets into tax shelters and also have the means to live abroad.. and move their companies abroad.

As for special needs, I have an adult daughter with Down Syndrome. In the 25 years since she was born, I have hoped that researchers might make some breakthroughs to find effective medical therapies for the negative effects of Down's (there are POSITIVE effects - plenty of them).

All medical researchers have invested in has been in improving methods of diagnosing Down's in utero - and offering termination as a cure.

If researchers discover there is a genetic link, a marker, for autism, I think people with autism will suffer the same fate as fetuses with Down Syndrome.

Posted by: Inverness | October 29, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if she and McCain realize that this is just one more program they favor that is a form of the socialism they accuse Obama of favoring. If they do they are lying hypocrites, and if not they lack the intellect required by the positions they seek. She clearly expects that her family should have 5 more tax exemptions than mine, and that she should then receive greater benefit by having her special needs met, at least partially, by the taxpayers.

The reality is that we will never have a truly capitalist society where everbody pays in proportion to the benefit they receive. That they expect the electorate to be fooled is both sad and realistic.

Posted by: really_think_about_it | October 28, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

What a shame that Governor Palin felt it was necessary to attack basic research as mentioned in your article by Juliet Eilperin today. It, unfortunately, demonstrates the very lack of science literacy our nation suffers with. Governor Palin stated that spending money on Fruit Fly research had nothing to do with the public good. Yet in the same speech indicated that she would direct funding towards individuals with special needs such as Down syndrome. Presumably this would include research. Someone should tell the governor that Down syndrome results from a failure of both copies of chromosome 21 to separate during formation of the gametes (the egg or sperm), something called non-disjunction. This was originally discovered by a man call C. B. Bridges in 1915 in Fruit Flies.

Posted by: scaruso1 | October 27, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I happen to have a son with Down Syndrome and also use the model nematode C. elegans to research the genetic basis for this complex disorder. It is ludicrous that Palin dismisses entire types of research for which she has no clue. The genetic study of simple organisms such worm and fly is much less costly, faster, and less ethically troublesome than research with other animals. I’m sure Palin would be interested to learn that the fruit fly has also been used to discover the key role of genes related to Down Syndrome. Recent examples include how the molecule DSCAM is essential for proper wiring of the nervous system (Nature 2007 449:223-7) and how another gene DSCR1 regulates the power centers of our cells called mitochondria (Nature Neurosci 2005 8:1577-85). I agree that IDEA should be properly funded; it’s a burden on our local school districts to force rules upon them without promised federal financial support. However, Palin and McCain need to appreciate how research is done and its importance. We have already seen a drastic decline in NIH funding for medical research with Bush. If a portion of the Iraq war budget went toward more research in simple animals, we might be that much closer to better understanding and treatments for Down Syndrome and Austism.

Posted by: jonps | October 27, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Palin did not address the basic difference between "educationally relevant" and "medically necessary" therapies. The school system is not set-up to handle ALL therapy, and especially not "medically necessary" therapy. She did not address the advocacy process, which is how parents and caregivers can make changes in their children's educational plan.
Gov. Palin addressed Vocational Rehabilitation in the high school, but Voc Rehab cannot begin until graduation by law.
The School Choice program in Pinellas County Florida cost taxpayers $8 million in transportation costs (not counting the toll on the environment) in the first year. The children had to leave hours earlier and arrived home later due to taking busses to a central bus station and changing buses.
What really needs to be addressed is how to carry out the current levels of educationally relevant therapy before we transport children in wheelchairs and with medical conditions all around town.
Also, not all children in the special education programs are going to be eligible for employment, as she states. Please review the wonderful children who are determined to be in the category--I don't like the name--severe and profound.
Gov. Palin showed me that she lacks understanding of the complexities of the school system and disabilities. As a therapist for over 33 years, I was insulted by her glossy policy presentation that reflected little knowledge of the realities of school therapy.

Posted by: tonita71 | October 27, 2008 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Gov. Palin did not address the basic difference between "educationally relevant" and "medically necessary" therapies. The school system is not set-up to handle ALL therapy, and especially not "medically necessary" therapy. She did not address the advocacy process, which is how parents and caregivers can make changes in their children's educational plan.
Gov. Palin addressed Vocational Rehabilitation in the high school, but Voc Rehab cannot begin until graduation by law.
The School Choice program in Pinellas County Florida cost taxpayers $8 million in transportation costs (not counting the toll on the environment) in the first year. The children had to leave hours earlier and arrived home later due to taking busses to a central bus station and changing buses.
What really needs to be addressed is how to carry out the current levels of educationally relevant therapy before we transport children in wheelchairs and with medical conditions all around town.
Also, not all children in the special education programs are going to be eligible for employment, as she states. Please review the wonderful children who are determined to be in the category--I don't like the name--severe and profound.
Gov. Palin showed me that she lacks understanding of the complexities of the school system and disabilities. As a therapist for over 33 years, I was insulted by her glossy policy presentation that reflected little knowledge of the realities of school therapy.

Posted by: tonita71 | October 27, 2008 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Palin has a real handle on the issues of special needs education. Having taught special needs students myself for the past 35 years, I know that fully funding IDEA in 1975 would have saved us several generations of heartache by now. The Congress of the U.S. never gave the original Act the 40 percent it had written into the legislation in 1975. Hundreds of families have been suffering ever since.


The genetics alone of the autism situation has those of us in special education overwhelmed. Just like in the early 1970s, the needs are too much for public education to handle. In the 1970s, grants were issued from the Federal Government to study the effects of Deaf/Blindness due to the Rubella epidemic. Now we have the Autism epidemic. Believe me, seeing these students each day and their families is very disheartening. Having the funds to actually purcahse the needed Speech and Special Education Teachers to work with these students would be a God sent. But it does take money and none of us who are well trained will work for free as we have families of our own to support. Some of us even have special needs children of our own.

So, before anyone brands Palin as a tax and spend liberal, please consider this. It takes time and money to properly educate students with any disabling condition. No amount of legislation is going to do it without the dollars to support that legislation. No one works for free and no one can cure a disabling condition. You need well trained educators who are able to teach these students how to compensate for their disablities. Thst takes time and patience.

Marie C. Palmeri, M.A.
Diagnostic Testing and Tutoring Center
mariececb@aol.com

Posted by: mariececb | October 26, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Palin has a real handle on the issues of special needs education. Having taught special needs students myself for the past 35 years, I know that fully funding IDEA in 1975 would have saved us several generations of heartache by now. The Congress of the U.S. never gave the original Act the 40 percent it had written into the legislation in 1975. Hundreds of families have been suffering ever since.


The genetics alone of the autism situation has those of us in special education overwhelmed. Just like in the early 1970s, the needs are too much for public education to handle. In the 1970s, grants were issued from the Federal Government to study the effects of Deaf/Blindness due to the Rubella epidemic. Now we have the Autism epidemic. Believe me, seeing these students each day and their families is very disheartening. Having the funds to actually purcahse the needed Speech and Special Education Teachers to work with these students would be a God sent. But it does take money and none of us who are well trained will work for free as we have families of our own to support. Some of us even have special needs children of our own.

So, before anyone brands Palin as a tax and spend liberal, please consider this. It takes time and money to properly educate students with any disabling condition. No amount of legislation is going to do it without the dollars to support that legislation. No one works for free and no one can cure a disabling condition. You need well trained educators who are able to teach these students how to compensate for their disablities. Thst takes time and patience.

Marie C. Palmeri, M.A.
Diagnostic Testing and Tutoring Center
mariececb@aol.com

Posted by: mariececb | October 26, 2008 10:53 PM | Report abuse

Fruit fly research has little to do with the general good??? Does this woman have no aides who can stop her from erring like this? As a career scientist I can easily say that a large part of what we now know about genetics, developmental biology, cancer, and diseases have been because we do fruit fly research. Many disorders like downs syndrome would not be so well understood without fruit flies not to mention the numbers of drugs used to treat important diseases that would not exist, or the general knowledge of how a cell works. Fruit flies along with nematodes, mice and other species are also valuable in learning about stem cells so that we do not have to use human embryos. I guess advancing medical science has little to do with the general good.

Posted by: ThatGuy1 | October 26, 2008 10:49 PM | Report abuse

This is a very obvious tactic to put a postive face on Sarah Palin, with late-breaking talk about special-needs children and also education.


Posted by: lch11 | October 25, 2008 8:32 AM

Please.....she mentioned it at the GOP convention.

Posted by: ca67klein | October 26, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

We all know the media has a double standard. What would happen if an actress on Saturday Night Live mimicked Michelle Obama's voice and accent. What would happen if the actress did send ups of Michelle Obama's "I've never been proud of my country" and "just downright mean" America? Saturday Night Live would be facing hate-crime charges!

Why aren't we reading about all the law suits against Obama which are seeking proof if he is really a natural born citizen?

Why aren't we reading more about Obama spending $5 million on his BIG night? A one night, one time only affair at the DNC.

The media will not report the TRUE facts about Obama. The media will run John McCain and Sarah Palin into the ground. Even Joe Biden is immuned from the media. He thinks Roosevelt got on TV during the stock market crash in 1929. That one has been around a few weeks now but if it were Palin, we would never hear the end of it. Joe Biden says that the world will test Obama within 6 months if he is elected President but the media did not press Joe into going into more details!

Who will test Obama? Russia? Iran? North Korea? Thank you Hillary Clinton for telling us that you are more qualified than Obama to answer that 3:00 AM phone call if the country is in crisis. Since we don't have the option of voting for Hillary, it leaves only one option and it isn't Obama! Hillary is right.

Posted by: sonnychiba72 | October 26, 2008 3:17 AM | Report abuse

Heh, loved the huge diss on "fruit fly" research. What have those dumb fruit fly researchers ever produce except important scientific discoveries on genetics and gene mutations - mutations which cause disease like Down Syndrome and autism.... oh, oopsy.

Poor Sarah, displaying her Average-Jane-the-Plumber ignorance on all things. At least the Average Jane will have some appreciation for science, and not open distaste.

Oh, love this analysis of Palin from Pharyngula:

"This idiot woman, this blind, shortsighted ignoramus, this pretentious clod, mocks basic research and the international research community. You damn well better believe that there is research going on in animal models — what does she expect, that scientists should mutagenize human mothers and chop up baby brains for this work? — and countries like France and Germany and England and Canada and China and India and others are all respected participants in these efforts.

Yes, scientists work on fruit flies. Some of the most powerful tools in genetics and molecular biology are available in fruit flies, and these are animals that are particularly amenable to experimentation. Molecular genetics has revealed that humans share key molecules, the basic developmental toolkit, with all other animals, thanks to our shared evolutionary heritage (something else the wackaloon from Wasilla denies), and that we can use these other organisms to probe the fundamental mechanisms that underlie core processes in the formation of the nervous system — precisely the phenomena Palin claims are so important."

Posted by: Mina3 | October 26, 2008 2:07 AM | Report abuse

These comments on here are SICK-
ONE article about Gov.Palin that isn't a smear job and you crazies can't stand it.

I guess none of you posters have a child with special needs.

Posted by: blevins20061 | October 26, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

ECONOMICS 104 - Lab

IGNORE ECONOMICS 103.

The Publication: "National Review" is as credible as say....Ashley Todd the auto-mugger.

McNuts have to stick together. (ewww!)

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 25, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Palin needs to get some education before opening her big mouth about what medical research should be funded and what should not get funded. She spent her time shunting to five different schools before she could get her UG degree and is no expert on science. Fruit flies for the basis for most work in genetics. They share almost 70% of human genes and offer the best "machines" for research. You can move them into several "generations" very quickly to see impact on the machine. Research done on fruit flies is used to move forward on major work in genetics.
She reminds me of Sen Proxmire of Wisconsin who used to given Golden Fleece Awards to scientist for research he never understood. He died of cancer and during his last days was treated with medicine discovered through research he used to criticize.
Both Go. Palin and Sen McCain (first debate) have repeatedly stated that they will cut funding for basic research. Both are ignorant and dangerous for America's health, prosperity, and success. These statements alone should disqualify them from holding any office in America. Shame on you Gov Palin and Sen McCain.

Posted by: mgtarun | October 25, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

ECONOMICS 103- Lab

Stanley (tool) Works- a Choice Between Jobs and Tax Bill- Raise Business Taxes=Layoffs!

Voting with their feet: when companies 'reincorporate abroad,' are they being unpatriotic? Or responsible?

Publication: National Review
Publication Date: 23-FEB-04 Format: Online

IMAGINE you are the CEO of a major multinational firm. Your chief financial officer comes to you and says if you move your legal home from the United States to Bermuda the company will have a 20 percent increase in net profits. With the increased profits, the company will be able to expand production, hire more workers, more R&D, and pay stockholders a higher dividend.

However, your VP for government relations tells you that if the company changes its legal home you, as the CEO, will be accused of being unpatriotic by some members of Congress and certain presidential candidates. Even worse, these same politicians will threaten to bar your company from obtaining U.S. government contracts, and demand that the IRS and government regulatory agencies single out your company for special scrutiny.

As the CEO of the company, you know you have a fiduciary responsibility to your stockholders to maximize their economic return by all legal and ethical means. You also know that the proposal to move your company is entirely legal and would be considered good management practice. You are also aware that many of the politicians who are likely to attack you are the same people who attacked managers in other industries, like mutual funds, for not being good custodians of investors' money. Despite what thoughtful people will clearly recognize as hypocrisy, those political attack dogs can cause considerable damage to you and your company as they have to other firms engaged in similar totally legal and appropriate behavior.

The Stanley Works (tools) company, for example, had planned in 2002 to reincorporate in Bermuda, in the hope of lowering its tax bill. The move was ditched, however, after political pressure was brought to bear on the company. Subsequently, Stanley was forced to lay off about 1,000 of its U.S. staff.

Posted by: thecannula | October 25, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Seemstone,

Great post. Of course, MSM pays no attention this hypocricy...must be that liberal bias thing....

Posted by: KAM3 | October 25, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse


Bar Stool Economics 102
Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes,
it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing. -- drank nothing.
The fifth would pay $1 -- drank tap water.
The sixth would pay $3. -- drank giner-ale
The seventh would pay $7. -- drank bud
The eighth would pay $12. -- drank heineken
The ninth would pay $18. -- drank gin and tonic
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.-- drank top shelf XO and wrote it off as a business expense

the rest is bull

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 25, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

IF PALIN IS SO QUALIFIED...

Then why didn't she run for president?

Makes you wonder what the Republican Primary would have looked like? ...

"I've been Governer for TWO WHOLE MONTHS and I'm READY to be President"

---

18 Million people voted for Obama in the primaries because of his vision for America not his experience.

Palin got one vote (Karl Rove moving McCains mouth) Palin's and the only vision I know of from her is her view of Russia (so she claims).

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 25, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Bar Stool Economics 101
Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes,
it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that's what they decided to do.
The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed
quite happy with the arrangement, until one day,
the owner threw them a curve.
'Since you are all such good customers, he said, 'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.
Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.
(So he reduced their bill in proportion to what they currently paid-)
'I only got a dollar out of the $20,'declared the sixth man.
He pointed to the tenth man,' but he got $10!'

'Yeah, that's right,' exclaimed the fifth man.
'I only saved a dollar, too. It's unfair that he got ten times more than I!'
'That's true!!' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!'
'Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison. 'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!'

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.

The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, boys and girls, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D.
Professor of Economics, University of Georgia
For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible

Posted by: thecannula | October 25, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Cold Spring Harb Symp Quant Biol. 2007 ;72 :645-54 : The possible interplay of synaptic and clock genes in autism spectrum disorders. T Bourgeron
Human Genetics and Cognitive Functions Unit, Department of Neuroscience, Institut Pasteur, Paris, France, and Université Denis Diderot Paris 7, Paris, France.
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are complex neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by deficits in social communication, absence or delay in language, and stereotyped and repetitive behaviors. Results from genetic studies [IN FRUIT FLIES] reveal one pathway associated with susceptibility to ASD, which includes the synaptic cell adhesion molecules NLGN3, NLGN4, and NRXN1 and a postsynaptic scaffolding protein SHANK3.

Posted by: 4avocats | October 25, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

This person will say or do anything to get ellected.You put lipstick on a Nazi and their still a Nazi

Posted by: pragman | October 25, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

McCain and Palin are for school vouchers. They really do not support Public Schools. So when Palin talks about special education funding, who is the money for? Most special education is provided within Public School settings, and in fact Speech Language Pathology services are almost entirely provided by Public school Speech Language Pathologists, even for private school students. Does she know that "No Child Left Behind" has actually done special education the greatest disservice. Now even kids who are learning handicapped are expected, under the mandate of NCLB, to be at "grade level" in academics. It appears those who came up with NCLB are fundamentally ignorant about one fact :If learning handicapped students could be working at grade level they would not be in special education to begin with. Is Palin planning to send Trig to a Public School? When she says she would like to fully fund the federal mandate for special education, she is going to have to favor Public Education over vouchers.

Posted by: 1SuzyQ1 | October 25, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

PALIN YOU ARE A PHONEY OF THE FIRST ORDER - #ONE ON THE LIST .

INSTEAD OF TAKING ALL THOSE GREAT CLOTHES, ETC BACK TO ALASKA, HAVE AN AUCTION FOR THE UNDERPRIVLEDGED CHILDREN OF RHIS COUNTRY YOU ARE SO DEDICATED TO. "YOU BETCHA" BON VOYAGE TOOTS!

Posted by: LOONYBIN2000 | October 25, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Has any one seen this video of McCain cussing at Obama supporters at the McCain Rally? http://www.mccanes.com I cant tell if it is real or not.

Huckabee is the GOP favorite for 2012, Obama is the Dem favorite. according to a new poll at http://www.skip08.com

Posted by: pastor123 | October 25, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I would have believed this was not pandering but for the fact that she sarcastically berated the fact that money is being spent in a study involving fruitflies. She didn't bother to research that, in fact, the fruitfly gene study may lead to treatments for multiple neurological disorders. If she had been curious enough to find this out, I am sure she would not have attacked the study.

Posted by: republicrat | October 25, 2008 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Palin only cares about issues that affect her directly. The truth is if Palin did not have a special needs child would she spend this amount of time on the subject or any time at all? Not a snowball chance in hell. This is not to diminish the need to those families who require such services. Her agenda and behavior is consistent with a very selfish little beauty queen who pretty much has had everything go her way for most of her life. Honestly to reward this type of person with the Vice Presidency would place the entire country in serious jeopardy.

Posted by: jimfid100 | October 25, 2008 9:49 AM | Report abuse

This is a very obvious tactic to put a postive face on Sarah Palin, with late-breaking talk about special-needs children and also education.

Posted by: lch11 | October 25, 2008 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Palin's not alone in seeing beauty where other's do not-
I'm wondering if anyone knows where beauty lies?

Aledo High seniors pick classmate with Down syndrome as homecoming queen
October 11, 2008
By MICHAEL E. YOUNG / The Dallas Morning News
myoung@dallasnews.com

Never has the selection of a homecoming queen sent so many tears falling so freely.

Kristin Pass, an 18-year-old senior with Down syndrome, became Aledo High School's homecoming queen Friday to a joyous standing ovation and the flutter of a thousand tissues on a remarkable night for an amazing young woman.

Her grandfather, Dr. David Campbell of Corsicana, escorted her onto the field and gave her a quick kiss on the cheek as Kristin joined eight other young women in the Homecoming Court to await the results of the vote, cast by the 360-plus members of Aledo High's senior class.

"Oh my gosh! I was sitting in the student section and everyone stood up, crying and cheering for Kristin," said longtime friend and fellow senior Meaghan Geary, 17, who first met Kristin in the third grade. "It was great!"

"It's just something you can't even imagine," she said. "And afterward, everyone was just running down to her, congratulating her. And the other girls in the court, they're all just beautiful girls, inside and out."

Ms. Pass said she spoke later with a friend. "She said the only mistake anyone made was not handing out crying towels."

"Kristin has a lot of friends – she likes everyone. It doesn't matter if you're tall or short, pretty, not pretty, smart, not smart – she likes everybody. She has great friends. And Aledo is a great community."

When she won, he was thrilled. "This has been such a special time, a special week for Kristin," he said. "And I was really taken by the maturity and the love shown by her friends, her peers, her classmates.

"That makes this a double blessing."

She was so thrilled, her mother said, that she took her crown to bed with her.
Kristin doesn't care what's on the outside, Meaghan said. She's friends with everyone, and everyone admires that.

"She's the person we all want to be," Meaghan said.


Posted by: thecannula | October 25, 2008 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone vet these speeches before they are given? It is incomprehensible to me that she can criticize fruit fly research that can lead to better understanding of autism, a topic on which Palin herself has a special interest.

Posted by: chi-town | October 25, 2008 5:43 AM | Report abuse

"Tragically, McCain and conservatives have spent their careers voting against the exact policies and programs Palin discussed today,"

darn, everybody is hip to the hypocrisy already.
Like, truth is, Palin cut special needs in Alaska; check it out.


Posted by: ukeman | October 25, 2008 3:37 AM | Report abuse

Palin's knock on fruit fly research, as noted by Luis1, probably referred to research on predators of an agricultural pest, the olive fruit fly, not the drosophila used in basic genetic research. Readers can be forgiven their confusion, though, since Palin's reference was vague. But the remark still betrays her ignorance of science, and her willingness to mouth words without inquiring as to their truth.

Here's her comment in full: "And where does a lot of that earmark money end up? It goes to projects having little or nothing to do with the public good -- things like fruit fly research in Paris, France..."
At the web site of Citizens Against Government Waste, one can find an earmark listed for olive fruit fly research in France: http://www.cagw.org/site/PageServer?pagename=reports_pigbook2008_database
- except the grant site wasn't Paris, it was Montpellier. Google "olive fruit fly research Montpellier" and you'll learn the grant recipient was the European Biological Control Laboratory, a research station established by the US Department of Agriculture in 1919. Why does the USDA have a lab in Europe? Well, many of our crop plants - like olive trees - are native to Europe, and if you're looking for biological predators to control pests like the olive fruit fly, Europe is where you'll find them. Cong. Thompson's grant might have been an earmark, but it doesn't look frivolous to me.

Among all the specious earmarks Palin's speechwriters could have chosen, why did they pick this one? Well, sending federal dollars to France - that's a hot button. And why not juice it a little - not just France, but "Paris, France." Gay Paree - a little hint of grant money being frittered away in bistros and strip clubs.

Now, a person with a decent science education and an ounce of curiosity might hesitate when presented with such a line. She might ask her staff, "What exactly was this fruit fly rersearch about? Maybe it had some scientific merit or practical value. I'd like to know that before I attack it as wasteful." We can be pretty sure Sarah Palin did not ask that question. Ignorant and incurious - well, isn't that the George W. Bush method?

Posted by: bssjersey | October 25, 2008 3:16 AM | Report abuse

This fruit fly thing cracks me up. She's got a real problem if she doesn't understand by now why she's become such a national lampoon. Even foreign media is laughing at her, what an embarassment.. and yes, she's using her own son for her political gain. Sad person, really...

Posted by: glOver1 | October 25, 2008 1:31 AM | Report abuse

It's sad, really. Sarah Palin is so unread, poorly educated, and just plain dumb, that she continually shoots herself in her own feet--feet which have more to fear from her random shots than any moose. The fruit fly research to which she referred is an important component of genetic research related to discovering the causes of autism. Palin likes to think of herself as an advocate for better research regarding autism as well as Downs syndrome, but she blithely ignores the fact that her Republican party, and more specifically her running mate John McCain, have been astoundingly weak, or outright negative, in their attitudes and votes regarding the support and implementation of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. She also seems to think that private/public partnerships are going to somehow magically take care of this enormous problem, but here is a perfect example of a place where responsible and targeted government involvement--not the Republican ideology of no-government--is needed. Sad indeed. Like most Republicans, Sarah Palin has such thick ideological blinders on that she can't see that a vote for Republicans is a vote against her own avowed interests, a vote against opportunity and good health options for her son and her nephew and all the other sons and nephews and families who are dealing with autism and Downs syndrome.

Posted by: lakotadee | October 25, 2008 1:10 AM | Report abuse

corection
Palin's speech regarding people with disabilities was rich in appropriate sentiments but troublesome in terms of actual policies. Fully funding IDEA, in the amount of some 14 billion dollars for 2009 alone, is the purpose of Senate Bill 1159, and McCain is not one of its 26 sponsors. The proposed voucher program would actually undermine IDEA because all those special alternative schools would violate the central principle of least restrictive environment. I fear that such vouchers would mostly help rich people to get reduction of tuition costs for expensive residential programs, assisting them to send their children with disabilities away from their families, while deflating financial support for our neighborhood schools.

Posted by: rebeccajohnson1 | October 25, 2008 12:39 AM | Report abuse

Her story is no less a fabrication than thecannula's assertion that he is a business man.
GatorRon

Obama said that he didn't vote for the Infant Protection act because there were other laws on the books, and the Harvard lawyer has never cited one...he said that the federal Act was different before he admitted they were the same...he left out the fact that NARAL, Kennedy, and Boxer didn't oppose it!- yeah that women in Penn. who carved a B in her cheek needs help- but I'M NOT VOTING FOR HER- Obama's LIE allows babies to be thrown in the garbage alive!

My small business grossed many times Obama's glass ceiling last year and employed one more person this year than it will employ next year if my taxes are raised by 3% PLUS 15.65% (payroll cap elimination) as Obama would do!

So, if Obama's elected, add my small business and others like it to the big businesses already laying off this quarter- Yahoo, Ebay, Sprint, Alcoa,Chrysler, etc.
Keep those tax rates rising on emplyers Obama....even Bill Clinton called raising the payroll cap "Regressive"...that's what Obama's tax policy is Bill!

Posted by: thecannula | October 25, 2008 12:01 AM | Report abuse

Palin's speech regarding people with disabilities was rich in appropriate sentiments but troublesome in terms of actual policies. Fully funding IDEA, in the amount of some 13 trillion dollars for 2009 alone, is the purpose of Senate Bill 1159, and McCain is not one of its 26 sponsors. The proposed voucher program would actually undermine IDEA because all those special alternative schools would violate the central principle of least restrictive environment. I fear that such vouchers would mostly help rich people to get reduction of tuition costs for expensive residential programs, assisting them to send their children with disabilities away from their families, while deflating financial support for our neighborhood schools.

Posted by: rebeccajohnson1 | October 25, 2008 12:00 AM | Report abuse

: rharring -

He cited No Law- He referred to some made up threat to Roe v Wade that the Born Alive Infant Protection Act would "threaten" Even Though NARAL said it wouldn't and didn't oppose it! Even Ted Kennedy and Barbara Boxer voted FOR the law....THEY wanted to keep live babies out of the trash, where your cerebral cortex and your candidate's morals reside.

Posted by: thecannula | October 24, 2008 11:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm wondering if anyone knows where beauty lies?

Aledo High seniors pick classmate with Down syndrome as homecoming queen
October 11, 2008
By MICHAEL E. YOUNG / The Dallas Morning News
myoung@dallasnews.com

Never has the selection of a homecoming queen sent so many tears falling so freely.

Kristin Pass, an 18-year-old senior with Down syndrome, became Aledo High School's homecoming queen Friday to a joyous standing ovation and the flutter of a thousand tissues on a remarkable night for an amazing young woman.

Her grandfather, Dr. David Campbell of Corsicana, escorted her onto the field and gave her a quick kiss on the cheek as Kristin joined eight other young women in the Homecoming Court to await the results of the vote, cast by the 360-plus members of Aledo High's senior class.

"Oh my gosh! I was sitting in the student section and everyone stood up, crying and cheering for Kristin," said longtime friend and fellow senior Meaghan Geary, 17, who first met Kristin in the third grade. "It was great!"

"It's just something you can't even imagine," she said. "And afterward, everyone was just running down to her, congratulating her. And the other girls in the court, they're all just beautiful girls, inside and out."

Ms. Pass said she spoke later with a friend. "She said the only mistake anyone made was not handing out crying towels."

"Kristin has a lot of friends – she likes everyone. It doesn't matter if you're tall or short, pretty, not pretty, smart, not smart – she likes everybody. She has great friends. And Aledo is a great community."

When she won, he was thrilled. "This has been such a special time, a special week for Kristin," he said. "And I was really taken by the maturity and the love shown by her friends, her peers, her classmates.

"That makes this a double blessing."

She was so thrilled, her mother said, that she took her crown to bed with her.
Kristin doesn't care what's on the outside, Meaghan said. She's friends with everyone, and everyone admires that.

"She's the person we all want to be," Meaghan said.

Posted by: thecannula | October 24, 2008 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin wears her family like a cross. Even in Alaska, special needs children are allowed to go to Public school. She didn't invent this concept.
What an exceptionally dislikable person Palin seems to be. From the first moment she stepped onto the national stage, there hasn't been a single retold aspect of her personal history that would inspire confidence, or respect, or anything but revulsion. She seems the perfect example of a shallow, petty, self-centered person rising in power simply because being shallow, petty and self-centered are the only tools necessary to do so.

Posted by: BakedAlaska1 | October 24, 2008 11:44 PM | Report abuse

I'm wondering if Sarah Palin has ever set foot in a science class. Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies) have been THE model organism for genetic research. Research using this species has provided much of the foundation for what we know about genetics today. We will never solve the mystery of autism without federally funded research like this. This type of research is fundamentally about the public good. Sarah Palin has once again betrayed her ignorance.

Posted by: somdliz | October 24, 2008 11:14 PM | Report abuse

The earmark Governor Palin was referring to has nothing to do with medical research. If you'd spent a couple of minutes on Google checking your facts you would have come across this:

"Some lawmakers defended their earmarks, such as Rep. Mike Thompson, D-California, who channeled $742,764 to olive fruit fly research.

"The olive fruit fly has infested thousands of California olive groves and is the single largest threat to the U.S. olive and olive oil industries," he said

http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/04/02/pork.spending/

Posted by: Luis1 | October 24, 2008 11:08 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin knows nothing of special needs children! She had her son six months ago, she knows NOTHING of living with and dealing with the trials and tribulations nor the love and excitment of every little achievment.
Sarah Palin should stick to what she knows; oh I forgot there isn't anything!

Posted by: cstarch | October 24, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Trig Palin is an adorable, precious, sweet baby, so I wish his mother would stop feeling compelled to constantly refer to him as "beautiful." Special needs people do not need others to declare them "beautiful." It should go without saying! Sarah Palin will learn that after she has been at the special needs parenting role as long as I have been ...30 years. At this stage, Trig is but an infant who needs care like all other infants. The Palins do not know yet what they are in for with this little guy. The gaps will begin to appear, and reality will slowly set in. Raising Trig will be the biggest challenge of their life, and it will require great energy, commitment, and many resources. Since Palin is too new at this to be an expert, I am truly saddened to see her bring Trig on stage as a poster child for the campaign, especially when I had thought the candidates agreed to keep their children OUT of the campaigns. Many caring people preceded Sarah Palin in advocating for the disabled, and I am happy to say that a great number of those advocates did not wait until a disability showed up on their doorstep. Rather, countless wonderful teachers, therapists, health care professionals, political figures, celebrities, and others from many walks of life have helped our special needs citizens to live richer, fuller lives. Those people were there when my family experienced the shock and the early years of our having a child with special needs. We appreciate our advocates. My husband and I continue to advocate for our boy and for others, and the Palins will find that they will have to do the same for their child. Believe me, with only 24 hours in a day, it will not be "Country First," but "Trig First." He will not be your ordinary kid and he will need and deserve lots and lots of parental love, time, and guidance. This task is highly rewarding, but very demanding. I know Trig is very loved and wanted, and this is a good start for him. However, at this point, Sarah Palin is a newbie at this special needs parenting business, and thus,should hold off on calling herself the advocate for all the rest of us who have long traveled this very difficult road.

Posted by: RealityCheck16 | October 24, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

MCCAIN'S OWN WORDS IN 2000 - HE'S A SOFT SOCIALIST FLIP-FLOPPER

STUDENT: Why is it that someone like my father who goes to school for 13 years gets penalized in a huge tax bracket because he's a doctor. Why is that - why does he have to pay higher taxes than everybody else? Just because he makes more money. How is that fair?

MCCAIN: I think you're questioning, questioning the fundamentals of a progressive tax system where people who make more money pay more in taxes than a flat across the board percentage. I think it's to some degree because we feel obviously that wealthy people can afford more. We have over the years beginning with John F. Kennedy reduced some of those marginal tax rates to make them less onerous. I believe that when you really look at the tax code the very wealthy because they can afford tax lawyers and all kinds of loopholes really don't pay as much as you think they do, when you just look at the percentages. And I think middle income Americans, working Americans, who when you count in payroll taxes, sales taxes, mortgage -- all of the, all of the taxes that working Americans pay -- I think you would also think that they also deserve very significant relief.

At that point host Chris Matthews asked for members of the audience to applaud if they support wealthier people paying a higher percentage of their incomes; there was loud applause.

STUDENT: I still don't see how that's fair...aren't we getting closer and closer to Socialism and stuff...?

MCCAIN: Look, here's what I really believe: That when you are, when you reach a certain level of comfort, there's nothing wrong with paying somewhat more. But at the same time it shouldn't be totally out of proportion.

McCain added that the "first people who deserve a tax cut are working Americans...and they're the ones I would support tax cuts for first."

Posted by: seemstome | October 24, 2008 10:44 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA BIDEN 08...!!!


NETHERLANDS ANTILLES

Posted by: fu_buki | October 24, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

The only reason I want McCain to win at this point is watch the hardcore left- many of whom are equally as ignorant, intolerant, and bigoted as they claim the right is- throw the biggest, collective temper tantrum ever.

In fact, if McCain won I'd tune into Countdown with Keith Olbermann simply to watch him implode. I can see it now. His veins bulging out just like in the movie Scanners and then 'ka-boom.'

Posted by: politicalchampionshipwrestling | October 24, 2008 10:22 PM | Report abuse

"Top Salary in McCain Camp? Palin’s Makeup Stylist"

"Who was the highest paid individual in Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign during the first half of October as it headed down the homestretch?

Not Randy Scheunemann, Mr. McCain’s chief foreign policy adviser; not Nicolle Wallace, his senior communications staffer. It was Amy Strozzi, Gov. Sarah Palin’s traveling makeup artist, according to a new filing with the Federal Election Commission on Thursday night.

Ms. Strozzi, who was nominated for an Emmy award for her makeup work on the television show “So You Think You Can Dance?”, was paid $22,800 for the first two weeks of October alone, according to the records. The campaign categorized Ms. Strozzi’s payment as “Personnel Svc/Equipment.”"

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/24/pains-makeup-stylist-fetches-highest-salary-in-2-week-period/?hp

Posted by: nowanna3 | October 24, 2008 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Her first policy speech on an issue in which she is supposed to be an expert, and she does not know the fruit fly research identified key genetic markers of autism. Incredible ignorance.

Posted by: mvaney | October 24, 2008 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Why does Sarah Palin pull her poor son out for every photo opportunity on the campaign trail?

Thats someone who wants thinks pandering to the camera is more important than being a mother.


Posted by: lprincenyc | October 24, 2008 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Many of your commenters noted the hypocrisy in Palin's comments today about special needs kids. But what really upset me was that she felt the need to lie, yet again, about Obama's tax policies and try to scare families that he would tax them. It's close to criminal the way she drags her baby around in the loud rallies, when he ought to be in intensive therapy at home in a stable environment -- but to use the policy speech as another way to lie about Obama literally made me sick.

Posted by: LindaB1 | October 24, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin is a dangerous hypocrite! She says she supports funding help for special need kids? She is lying!

See what she said about a proposal in Colorado to raise the state sales tax 1/10 cent to help us support special needs kids. Keep in mind that Colorado has one of the lowest funding rates for these kids in the country. Waiting lists are up to 15 years.

http://www.9news.com/news/article.aspx?storyid=102301&catid=188

Posted by: HereInDenver | October 24, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin is a dangerous hypocrite! She says she supports funding help for special need kids? She is lying!

See what she said about a proposal in Colorado to raise the state sales tax 1/10 cent to help us support special needs kids. Keep in mind that Colorado has one of the lowest funding rates for these kids in the country. Waiting lists are up to 15 years.

http://www.9news.com/news/article.aspx?storyid=102301&catid=188

Posted by: HereInDenver | October 24, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't Sarah Palin think that bombing abortion centers is terrorism? Because they're holy warriors? Please keep this women out of the White House!!

Posted by: thebobbob | October 24, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

She came to the "special needs" issue only after birthing one of her own.

Typical.

Republicans only become compassionate for others when it relates to themselves or someone close to them. "Empathy" requires thinking beyond oneself, employing a tender imagination.

(It's the same sort of thing that Republicans do with term limits: pass them to halt successful Democrats; overturn them when a successful Republican is being limited.)

Posted by: terry1960 | October 24, 2008 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Palin is totally out of touch with Special Needs in the educational arena. I've worked in Spec. Needs for over 20 years and she needs to re-evaluate her statement: "Too often, even in our own day, children with special needs have been set apart and excluded..." "Too often, state and federal laws add to their challenges, instead of removing barriers and opening new paths of opportunity."

She is totally clueless! I wonder when she last reviewed the public school system and see how much they are really doing. Better still, when did she last visit or become involved in special needs? Now, with her own special needs child, hopefully she'll check out the public school system before getting a voucher to take him to private school.

I have a grandson with Autism and he has been schooled in the public school system since age 3. He's doing beautifully.

Posted by: Joonbug98 | October 24, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Palin bothered to buy her special needs son any clothes during her most recent $150,000 elitist shopping spree in New York?


I don't understand how any "hockey mom" could spend $150,000 of campaign money on clothes in a couple months. Yes, I understand candidates have to look good. I'm all for the professional wardrobes, and grooming, and all that. But... jeez. A hundred and fifty grand -- holy crap. And from campaign donations of people like "Joe the Plumber", no less. And after you've just spent two months painting yourself as a salt of the earth small-town hero, a "real" American who doesn't go in for all that stuff?


You know, Palin really is beginning to come off as a con artist -- a confidence (wo)man. Pure Harold Hill stuff. She says some pretty words, bluffs her way through all the situations that require active knowledge, the crowd cheers, and all the while fleeces everyone around her for travel, and fame, and clothes, etc., etc.


Palin's ridiculous levels of professed self-confidence, during all of this, just adds to the overall vibe that she's playing everyone for rubes, and is enjoying every minute of it. It's not a job or even an election to her, it's a game show, and she won the Big Prize.


What an exceptionally dislikable person Palin seems to be. From the first moment she stepped onto the national stage, there hasn't been a single retold aspect of her personal history that would inspire confidence, or respect, or anything but revulsion. She seems the perfect example of a shallow, petty, self-centered person rising in power simply because being shallow, petty and self-centered are the only tools necessary to do so. I half expect her to make off with McCain's wallet at some point, and be found two weeks later in Atlantic City.
.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NrzXLYA_e6E
.

Posted by: DrainYou | October 24, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

thecannula,

you may be a businessman but your not the crispiest chip in the bag. Obama did sight that law during the debate. The law was from the anti abortion groups that tried to box in their representatives on this law. Study a little you may learn............

Posted by: rharring | October 24, 2008 6:25 PM | Report abuse

HEY MCCAIN, YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT RISKY IS?


It's when a warmongering old man like you starts babbling about about staying in Iraq for 100 years and then starts singing about how fun it would be to bomb Iran off the face of the earth.
.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nqtL-P8kzo
.


YOU WANT TO KNOW WHAT ELSE IS RISKY, MCCAIN?


It's risky when you pick a half cocked rightwing lunitic fringe nut (Palin) as your running-mate.


Palin: "I Don't Know If Abortion Clinic Bombers Are Terrorists":


The buffoonish nature of Sarah Palin's vice presidential candidacy has mostly been a disaster for the McCain-Palin campaign, but it is has delivered at least one benefit: her foibles have helped obscure the true nature of her right-wing extremism.


But now, Palin's self-destructive behavior is threatening to expose even that. In an interview broadcast yesterday on NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams asked Palin whether she felt abortion clinic bombers were terrorists.


Amazingly, she said that she didn't know:


WILLIAMS: Is an abortion clinic bomber a terrorist under this definition?

PALIN: "I don’t know if you’re going to use the word ‘terrorist’ there," she said.
.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2hu1NeI4M1k
.


Palin's answer is perhaps the single most incredible thing I've heard from any candidate during this entire general election campaign, and I don't make that statement lightly.


What makes it so incredible is that Sarah Palin was responding to one of the easiest questions that has been posed during this entire campaign. Her answer should have been simple: of course they are terrorists.


Instead, Palin balked, saying that while bombings were unacceptable, she didn't know if they were acts of terrorism. Palin's answer was an obvious wink and a nod to right wing nut job extremists, with whom she shares radical views, including opposition to reproductive freedom even in cases of rape or incest and advovacy of protests designed to disrupt access to abortion clinics.


This was not a question to which "I don't know" was an acceptable answer. There is no excuse for it, and it puts Sarah Palin well on the margins of this nation's political spectrum.
.
http://www.prochoice.org/about_abortion/violence/index.html
.

Posted by: DrainYou | October 24, 2008 6:17 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like a "pet project" to me a really big earmark for a family with a special needs child. I applaude the effort and if elected it will be a good thing. Maybe when Sarah Palin moves out of her bubble of the Tundra and energy she will see there is alot this country could do better! Like providing equal education for all, either politician elected I wish for that. I am educator and see the holes, especially the holes in children of color, disadvantaged, and poor and her pledge doesn't do much for them. This one issue this country can not let pass or else this country is going to go down the tubes and do some research it is real.

Posted by: lucyariasmn | October 24, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Her story is no less a fabrication than thecannula's assertion that he is a business man.
GatorRon

Obama said that he didn't vote for the Infant Protection act because there were other laws on the books, and the Harvard lawyer has never cited one...he said that the federal Act was different befoer he admitted they wre the same- yeah that women in Penn. who carved a B in her cheek needs help- but I'M NOT VOTING FOR HER- Obama's LIE allow babies to be thrown in the garbage alive!

My small business grossed many times Obama's glass ceiling last year and employed one more person this year than it will employ next year if my taxes are raised by 3% PLUS 15.65% (payroll cap elimination) as Obama would do!

Posted by: thecannula | October 24, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Didn't McPalin offer a complete, across-the-board spending freeze by program as their solution to the economic crisis?

Seems to me that an additional $3 billion per year runs afoul of that promise. . .

Posted by: VeblenLegacy | October 24, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I agree with "Ohreallynow". I'm glad the republicans are finally beginning to come around to the position which democrats, like Eunice Kennedy Schriver and JFK himself, had supported for years. That bipartisan support will make it easier to get funding and laws passed to better serve this population, a unity we will need in order to keep up or newly achieve decent levels of funding for the developmentally disabled in the face of the economic crisis.

Posted by: TQWoods | October 24, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

McNoshame and Toxic Sarah will say anything to get elected but will toss those promises out the window if they don't seem to be garnering votes.

Posted by: Jerryvov | October 24, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Amazing!

If there is a health problem that affects her family, then she's all for funding research. If the problem affects other families, well ... that's tough.

Posted by: hanseman1 | October 24, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Palin may be telling the truth on funding for special needs. The government expenditures increased under Palin and maybe with a few winks and a you betcha she can cajole McCain to fund her cause. Kathleen Parker suggests he chose Palin because of a unacted upon sexual infatuation with her.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 24, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm all for special needs programs (I have two cousins who are developmentally delayed), however, if the McCain campaign is talking about an across the board spending freeze and now after Palin's speech I assume it to mean everything except for special needs funding and defense. Am I the only one who sees a gross lack of priorities?

Haven't they, the for the last couple of weeks, been the party of careful spending? Put a freeze on researchers who are looking into curing diseases like autism.

How about an increase in education funding across the board, how about affordable health care?

Posted by: DirtyDish | October 24, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

as one who shares gov. palin's advocacy for special needs individuals, i can appreciate her concern...however, her remarks are also futher evidence of her lack of grasp...her plan for federalizing the obligations for care and its costs is, of course, to "socialize" them...let's hope that her compassion extends to others whose needs, (medical, educational, etc.) require assistance.

Posted by: nurrevir | October 24, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Palin's focus on symbolic support for special causes (one might say earmarks?) is more along the traditional role of First Lady than Vice President.

Posted by: qwertyuiop2 | October 24, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

McCain - Palin = 46%

Obama - Biden = 44%

Posted by: Phil6 | October 24, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

thecannula

Ashley Todd the twenty year old woman who had a reverse B on her right cheek that she claimed was "carved" into her face with a knife by a six foot four black assailant. By coincidence she is a campaign worker for John McCain and her assailant only bettered her when he found out she was a McCain supporter. He was a politically active criminal. If that sounds a little contrived and farfetched, that is because it is. She admitted today that the story was a fabrication.

Her story is no less a fabrication than thecannula's assertion that he is a business man.

He now wants us to believe that as a businessman that he will spend time talking about things for which he has no particular expertise. I could critique the ridiculousness of his proposition. If you are really interested in polls and polling accuracy I will refer the reader to:

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/

There you will find that the chances of a McCain victory is in one in 25 or the kind of thing that occurs once a century.

The Republican Party has been led by a man who has put campaign further in the gutter than any candidate in the post Truman era. His supporters seem to have no integrity and are wont to dissemble and distort and in the case of Ashley commit a crime for their win at all cost attitude. It would seem to me just to get rid of this gutter mentality in politics that a vote against McCain even not for Obama would send a message how unwanted is their presence in the political system.

To win McCain must win all three of OH, FL and PA. Hold NC, MO, IN, and NV. He must reverse the trend that put Obama in the lead and do it in one fourth the time. Furthermore the financial crisis continues and no issue has captured the attention of the American people while this rages on.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 24, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Mrs. Palin would like to join hands across the isle with the Kennedy family who have been serving these children for decades. But somehow, I doubt it.

Posted by: OHREALLYNOW | October 24, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Where are these billions of dollars going to come from. . .as we watch the stock markets around the world continue to fall? McCain already said he would freeze everything except for military spending, and Sarah already cut all these programs in her own home state, along with the funding for teen pregnancy programs, and the assistance program for female victims of vicious crimes. Guess Sarah is just spewing hot air again. Every time she opens her mouth, nonsense pops out.

Posted by: GenuineRisk | October 24, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

I guess that means that there will be no more bridges to nowhere for Alaska. COnsidering she kept that money, it is kind of convernient for her to criticize AFTER the fact.
Besides, Repubs have been cuttign spending on autism research and education for the past 12 years. Kind if rich for them to claim they are going to fix what they already broke.

Posted by: phorse | October 24, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

From- Investment News- the leading news source for investment advisors

Congress mulls major 401(k) changes
By Sara Hansard
October 7, 2008, 5:18 PM EST Post a Comment Recommend (252)


A wide range of sweeping changes to the 401(k) system were proposed Tuesday at a hearing on how the market crisis has devastated retirement savings plans.
Chief among them was eliminating $80 billion in tax savings for people enrolled in 401(k) retirement savings plans.

This was suggested by the chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor.

“With respect to the 401(k), it appears to be a plan that is not really well-devised for the changes in the market,” Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., said.

“We’ve invested $80 billion into subsidizing this activity,” he said, referring to tax breaks allowed for 401(k) contributions and savings.

With savings rates going down, “what do we have to start to think about in Congress of whether or not we want to continue and invest that $80 billion for a policy that is not generating what we … say it should?” Mr. Miller said.

Congress should let workers trade their 401(k) assets for guaranteed retirement accounts made up of government bonds, suggested Teresa Ghilarducci, an economics professor at The New School for Social Research in New York.

When workers collected Social Security, the guaranteed retirement account would pay an inflation-adjusted annuity under her plan.

“The way the government now encourages 401(k) plans is to spend $80 billion in tax breaks,” which goes to the highest-income earners, Ms. Ghilarducci said.

That simply results in transferring money from taxed savings accounts to untaxed accounts, she said.

“If we implement automatic [individual retirement accounts] or if we expand the 401(k) system, all we’re doing is adding to this inefficiency,” Ms. Ghilarducci said.

Rep. Robert Andrews, D-N.J., raised the issue of which investment advisers are allowed to offer workers investment advice.

The Department of Labor is considering “loopholes” that would allow advisers to offer “conflicted investment advice if the advisers work for subsidiaries of financial services companies that sell the investments,” he said.

With American workers facing $2 trillion in losses from retirement plans over the past year and Democrats expected to gain seats in the House and the Senate, actions being contemplated by the committee are an important harbinger of what could come out of Congress next year.

(Wonder if a Democratic Congress and White House could get this done? Can't do much about the former, But Can about the latter. Same plan was pushed through in Argentina!)

Posted by: thecannula | October 24, 2008 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Who will you support in 2012, take part in a national poll at http://www.skip08.com

See Mike Huckabee and Al Sharpton fight about Acorn http://www.huckabeeshow.com

Posted by: pastor123 | October 24, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

In other breaking news, Palin is also trying to convince McCain to drill for oil in ANWR.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 24, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

So, Eddie is accusing McCain-Palin of flip-flopping?

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 24, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company