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Romney Lands Another GOP Hill Insider

Gov. Mitt Romney (R-Mass.) continues to pick up staff talent from Capitol Hill, hiring Joe Wall to serve as assistant political director for his all-but-certain 2008 presidential bid.

Wall was Majority Whip Roy Blunt's (R-Mo.) floor assistant during the recently concluded Congress -- meaning that he was on the House floor during most votes and developed strong relations with lawmakers.

A Nebraska native, Wall did a stint at the National Republican Congressional Committee before joining Blunt's staff. He joins Julie Teer, Commonwealth PAC's political director, at the soon-to-be campaign.

In recent weeks Romney has also hired Republican National Committee research director Matt Rhoades and Majority Leader John Boehner's (R-Ohio) press secretary, Kevin Madden.

One of Romney's tasks over the first part of 2007 will be to build relationships with GOP members of Congress. Sitting lawmakers are major players in the battle for buzz among the political chattering classes and some bring with them political organizations in early states that could aid a would-be candidate's bid.

Since Romney's home state of Massachusetts lacks a single Republican in its congressional delegation, he needs to find other senators and representatives willing to introduce him around the halls of Congress. Wall, who is expected to move to Boston at that start of next year, should facilitate Romney's attempt to do just that.

By Chris Cillizza  |  December 12, 2006; 8:40 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Texas 23rd: Another Democratic Pickup?


Following the tradition of tangents in this blog, I really would like to see a strong democratic candidate emerge and beat old-man McCain or most likely Romney. Our country is stuck in a rut (and not just that one in the Middle East) and we need a new direction. Hillary and Obama are OK but they don't knock my socks off. I'm hoping for a real leader (Richardson.....Bayh......SOMEONE PLEASE!!) to come through and put a fresh face on Washington.

Posted by: Smith | December 12, 2006 11:28 PM | Report abuse

I want to have Terry Nelson's babies. All of them.

Posted by: Erin | December 12, 2006 8:07 PM | Report abuse


Yeah, OK. If you want to be delusional, that's your perogative.

As for Mitt, he'll be butchered in the primaries. Terry Nelson (AKA the Einstein of the ad industry) will BBQ him, as practice for Hillary or Hussein or whatever other liberal freak emerges from the convention.

Mitt is a liberal.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 8:03 PM | Report abuse

"do the girls make fun of you for being such a creep?"

No. Actually I am popular with the Laydees :)

A good Obama joke always makes them laugh.

You should try it sometime.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 7:59 PM | Report abuse

The Log Cabin Republicans letter is such an obvious fault in his campaign that I'm sure his team saw it long ago and have a plan to play. Romney is too smart to let something like this slip past him. He'll still run and still be a top contender and probably win it all. He's the best player in the game and he's following the same campaign format like Carter, Clinton, and Bush.

Posted by: hotsauce | December 12, 2006 5:18 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Josh | December 12, 2006 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Romney is an embarassment to Massachusetts. People impressed with his ability to win in one of the most liberal states in the nation should note that he was the fourth in a string Republican governors here. He was also the last. His Lieutenant Governor, Kerry Healey, got clobbered in the general election, as did most other republicans here. Romney has failed to work across party lines and has done very little more than promote himself while in office in his delusional hopes of...well, you know. Any candidate this unpopular in his own state (He's really from Utah, where I look forward to sending him in a few weeks.) has zero chance of winning a presidential election.

Posted by: Josh | December 12, 2006 3:40 PM | Report abuse

You sure are one ugly little motha, willieboy. do the girls make fun of you for being such a creep? i hope so.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 3:27 PM | Report abuse

The basic problem with Mitt will be the target rich environment his 1994 and 2002 campaigns present. Does anyone really think the "He claimed to be more pro-gay than Teddy Kennedy" leaflets and push polls will not be out in South Carolina? Will the media guy who did "call me, harold" be unwilling to do that for his new client, McCain? Romney's got a great chin but its made of glass.

Posted by: jon | December 12, 2006 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately for Richardson, his wife is blonde and Irish looking.

I feel another call me ad in the works.

An ad with lots of pictures of Richardson and his beloved.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Richardson, as I said before, is in Mexico's pocket. He will not only grant the illegal criminals amnesty, but he will allow millions more in.

If Barack Hussein Obama's race will be an issue in the election (which it will) then Richardson's will as well.

But I don't think the country will vote for a Hispanic president in 2008 either. Your own Democratic voters in the Rust Belt, your new Mountain West voters, and even some of your more moderate voters in CA and PA will not vote for Richardson.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 1:58 PM | Report abuse

William, the last person the dems need to take advice from is a far right wacko like yourself. But thanks for letting us know who you fear most for dem nominee

Posted by: Rokkyrich | December 12, 2006 1:18 PM | Report abuse

That's an interesting point about Massachusetts not having a single Republican in Congress. That fact just makes his gubernatorial victory there four years ago seem even that much more impressive.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 12:27 PM | Report abuse

From now on, he shall be known as Mittens... so be it. A clown, like every other repug.

'Richardson is a shill for Mexico. A vote for him will be a vote for Aztlan and a vote for La Raza. I bet he's secretly a member of Mexican Intelligence and receives a monthly checque from the Mexican embassy.

If Richardson becomes president, we will lose the entire Southwest to the Mexicans.'

Is there a bigger bigot, with a smaller mind [or a smaller...] than william?

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

What is with all the anonymous posts?


Thanks for the Republican viewpoint on who is electable. I tend to think otherwise.

You cannot ignore his appeal and impact on a fast growing hispanic community in key states like Florida and Nevada especially as well as mountain west states like Montana and Colorado. Based on 2000 and 2004 Presidential results, flipping these states makes it a landslide.

Make no mistake, Richardson is the most feared candidate of the GOP. Even GOP bloggers say so (see Amy Proctor in Bottom Line Up Front blog and California Conservative).

Posted by: RMill | December 12, 2006 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Mitt Romney will never win the GOP primary.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 11:55 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:54 AM | Report abuse

What was the subject of CC's post, oh yes Mitt (talk about your strange names) Romney. Is Mitt short for Mittens? Not very presidential, eh?

All of Mittens' staff and all of Mittens' money won't put him in the White House.

Posted by: Truth Hunter | December 12, 2006 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who has strong feelings - for or against - about Obama for president is being idiotic. We are so far from the election. There is so much that we don't know about the candidates. The election isn't being decided now, and it certainly isn't being decided on this chat thread, so rein in your flaming passions. Try counting to 10 before pushing submit.

"Hakim is a terrorist and your party is a bunch of appeasers and losers."

I know, that story is amazing. They won't talk with the leaders of Iran and Syria, but they will talk to this guy? There is no consistancy here. Either take up diplomacy with people who hate us, or stick to the policy of isolating them. This half-way policy is doomed and embarrassing. We look like we don't know what we're doing - flailing around like an epileptic Archie Bunker. This is what happens when we elect someone with no foreign policy credentials; we get dangerous foreign policy. The criticism of Obama on this point is spot on.

Posted by: Adam Hammond | December 12, 2006 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Richardson is a shill for Mexico. A vote for him will be a vote for Aztlan and a vote for La Raza. I bet he's secretly a member of Mexican Intelligence and receives a monthly checque from the Mexican embassy.

If Richardson becomes president, we will lose the entire Southwest to the Mexicans.

Thankfully, Bill Ricardoson has no chance of winning. He should have stuck to playing major league baseball. Hillary has a better chance of winning than Richardson.

DEM candidates ranked from least electable to most: Obama,Richardson, Hillary,Biden, Dodd, Edwards, Vilsack, Bayh.

Stay in New Mexico, Bill.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Interesting to see that William keeps making the case for the people who labeled him a Bigot the other day, which he so vehemently denied. His defense seems to be mostly that, HE says that he's not a bigot.

William's philosophy (even if he doesn't know he has one) appears to be the same as Lee Atwater, Grover Norquist, James Tobin, etc.

He doesn't appear to understand the ethical problem in choosing the "end" over the "means" (see R. Nixon as historical example). That you can hit hard without hitting dirty.

Hopefully he has an epiphany. It took a terminal illness for Atwater to have his.

William: Your current position is that it is acceptable to encourage or facilitate bigotry in the name of politics. Because, literally, anything goes.

Anybody with that philosophy is as guilty as the Bigot themselves. You're walking and quacking like the proverbial duck; no matter how much you deny it.

Maybe we should just spell bigot with a small "b" for you; and with a capital "B" for the the others.

You need a 12-step program for the ethically challenged.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | December 12, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

"more like one of those mechanical dolls where you pull its string and it pukes out some moronic drivel."

no, i was talking straight to you, baby -- you and all your fellow GOP posters -- barely a single one of you that has ever uttered an original thought -- you're all dittoheads, plagarists, dummies -- you even use exactly the same language to spew your moronic 'ideas'..

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:44 AM | Report abuse

In 1973, the year General Pinochet brutally seized the government, Chile's unemployment rate was 4.3%. In 1983, after ten years of free-market modernization, unemployment reached 22%. Real wages declined by 40% under military rule.

In 1970, 20% of Chile's population lived in poverty. By 1990, the year "President" Pinochet left office, the number of destitute had doubled to 40%. Quite a miracle.

Pinochet did not destroy Chile's economy all alone. It took nine years of hard work by the most brilliant minds in world academia, a gaggle of Milton Friedman's trainees, the Chicago Boys. Under the spell of their theories, the General abolished the minimum wage, outlawed trade union bargaining rights, privatized the pension system, abolished all taxes on wealth and on business profits, slashed public employment, privatized 212 state industries and 66 banks and ran a fiscal surplus.

Freed of the dead hand of bureaucracy, taxes and union rules, the country took a giant leap forward ... into bankruptcy and depression. After nine years of economics Chicago style, Chile's industry keeled over and died. In 1982 and 1983, GDP dropped 19%. The free-market experiment was kaput, the test tubes shattered. Blood and glass littered the laboratory floor. Yet, with remarkable chutzpah, the mad scientists of Chicago declared success. In the US, President Ronald Reagan's State Department issued a report concluding, "Chile is a casebook study in sound economic management." Milton Friedman himself coined the phrase, "The Miracle of Chile." Friedman's sidekick, economist Art Laffer, preened that Pinochet's Chile was, "a showcase of what supply-side economics can do."

It certainly was. More exactly, Chile was a showcase of de-regulation gone berserk.

The Chicago Boys persuaded the junta that removing restrictions on the nation's banks would free them to attract foreign capital to fund industrial expansion.

Pinochet sold off the state banks - at a 40% discount from book value - and they quickly fell into the hands of two conglomerate empires controlled by speculators Javier Vial and Manuel Cruzat. From their captive banks, Vial and Cruzat siphoned cash to buy up manufacturers - then leveraged these assets with loans from foreign investors panting to get their piece of the state giveaways.

The bank's reserves filled with hollow securities from connected enterprises. Pinochet let the good times roll for the speculators. He was persuaded that Governments should not hinder the logic of the market.

By 1982, the pyramid finance game was up. The Vial and Cruzat "Grupos" defaulted. Industry shut down, private pensions were worthless, the currency swooned. Riots and strikes by a population too hungry and desperate to fear bullets forced Pinochet to reverse course. He booted his beloved Chicago experimentalists. Reluctantly, the General restored the minimum wage and unions' collective bargaining rights. Pinochet, who had previously decimated government ranks, authorized a program to create 500,000 jobs.

In other words, Chile was pulled from depression by dull old Keynesian remedies, all Franklin Roosevelt, zero Reagan/Thatcher.

New Deal tactics rescued Chile from the Panic of 1983, but the nation's long-term recovery and growth since then is the result of - cover the children's ears - a large dose of socialism.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:40 AM | Report abuse

The Case for Bill Richardson-

The Presidential Election of 1992 was a campaign of destiny. Governor Bill Clinton assembled a team that changed the way presidential campaigns are run. That formula was lost in 2000 and 2004.

Ignoring convention in picking Senator Al Gore, a fellow southerner, the boost in energy to the campaign was palatable everywhere they went. That energy was lost in 2000 and 2004.

2008 will be the first presidential election with no incumbent and no former Vice President running since 1952 (Eisenhower-Nixon defeating Stevenson-Sparkman). It follows the first unbroken chain of successive two-term presidencies (Bush-Cheney, Clinton-Gore 1992-2008) since James Madison and James Monroe 1808-1824.

In other words, the field is wide open and a new destiny awaits. And while the above dates show relative political stability, the actual events within this most recent time period (2000-present), indicate this could not be further from the truth.

A convergence of sorts is now shaping the 2008 political playing field. Turmoil abroad with U.S. diplomacy and standing in tatters. An opposition congress and a split electorate in the past two presidential elections. Growing dependence on foreign oil holds US consumers hostage and presents a growing security threat. Our increasing national debt is being consumed by China presents a further threat.

Priorities for 2008 and beyond-

Balance budget and buy back and pay down of the national debt
Energy security and independence
Restore U.S. diplomacy
Restore peace and stability
Education and workforce redeployment
Economic growth

A Clintonesque approach to budgeting needs to be returned to the White House. Bill Richardson served in the cabinet of the Clinton administration and is familiar with the tenents of such a policy. Also, as a governor, has had to balance the New Mexico budget.

Energy security and independence is crucial to wean us off foreign oil. Alternative energy strategies will further help stem global warming and climate change and create jobs for the US economy. As the former Energy Secretary, Bill Richardson has such experience. Also, as Governor of New Mexico, he has initiated many programs to jump start an alternative energy economy.

U.S. Diplomacy is virtually non-existant. We won't negotiate with anyone who is "not with us." As the former Ambassador to the U.N. and having been called into service numerous times to negotiate in Haiti and North Korea, Bill Richardson has the diplomatic skills to restore US foreign policy and re-enter the international community as a partner and not a bully. This will be essential in tackling the actual international crises' now profliferating under the current administration (Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Isreal-Palestine, Afghanastan, India-Pakistan, North Korea, African continent- Darfur especially).

As Governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson has instituted many programs to engage students and bolster education in his state. This approach will have long-term benefits in producing a first class workforce. Investments in science and technology have revolutionized the economy of New Mexico and the state is now poised to be the intergalactic hub of 21st century commercial space travel.

While the resume looks great on paper, Bill Richardson's actions show that there is no other candidate on the horizon with the full knowledge of the challenges we face as a nation and the requisite skills to deal with them all.

There is no question that Bill Richardson also has the political skills and advantages to bring new states into play during the election cycle that have not been competitive in recent years for Democrats. Arizona, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico and many western states that have seen a movement towards Democratic office holders like Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska and Oklahoma. When paired with possible running mates like Senator Evan Bayh (Indiana) to help with Midwestern states like Iowa, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin or a southerner like former Governor Mark Warner (Virginia) or former Senator John Edwards (North Carolina) cold open south-eastern seaboard states as well.

This combination of policy and politics makes the choice of Bill Richardson as our 44th President unrivaled.

Posted by: RMill | December 12, 2006 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Long long ago, I predicted Obama would be looking at the White House - the laughter from the crowd resinated right through my computer -

a month b4 the election I said Bush would dump Rummy - yea right was the response

believe it or not the people at some level still decide elections - and not the pundits

McCain is toast - on the political issues he is anything but decisive - to lead the military you must be decisive.

The American People are beginnging to change - the so called religious right has splintered into two groups - those who will continue with the hatemongering the Reputricans love and those who are now questioning whether or not their support should go to help the less fortunate- as to the latter, as we saw before the election - Republican talk radio lambasted them as planted liberals.

In Dallas, Texas 47 county wide elected republicans were sent packing on election night - every republican lost -

however here in South Texas - the last bastion of the Democratic party - the people threw out the County CEO (a democrat) in favor of a Republican

the country is not about Dems or Repubs anymore - it is about who we want to be as a people - party loyalty regardless of corruption no longer sells -

McCain and HRC represent the old guard parties and everything the people are coming to hate in our system -

In both cases if an underdog comes about they will win - I will bet the farm that true conservatives and not the hate and divide self proclaimed conservatives, will get behind someone like Maine Senator Susan Collins faster than McCain knows what hit him.

This is going to be a great election cycle - if you do not think the underdog thing is a real threat then why has the Reputricans already started the stupid non-substantive race baiting name calling against Obama - because they know he is a threat

How HRC handles Obama will decide her legacy - It is time for Bill to tell Hillary to cut a deal to become a supreme court justice of Majority leader in the Senate in 2008, after teh Dems win - it is over Hillary

Wes Clark and Obama are the ones to watch - do not be surprised if they then choose Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius as the VP -

Bobby Wightman-Cervnates

Posted by: Bobby Wightman-Cervantes | December 12, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"more like one of those mechanical dolls where you pull its string and it pukes out some moronic drivel.", that would be referencing Jimmy Carter on Leno last night.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 12, 2006 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Warbloggers endured a bleak November, watching their political heroes suffer the loss of both houses of Congress, while President Bush's approval ratings fell toward Nixonian levels, the mainstream media finally conceded the battle for Iraq had broken down into a civil war, and even war architect Donald Rumsfeld was tossed overboard. Everything warbloggers had championed over the past five years -- waging war with Islamists and creating a permanent Republican majority inside the Beltway -- came undone, and the chronically incorrect warbloggers, angry ideologues who make Sean Hannity look like a man of reason, slipped into the realm of the laughingstock.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:37 AM | Report abuse

'a delusional, retarded, moron.' --cons have a true gift for projection, none more so than william, who seems to have the lowest grade mind possibly ever to post here. every cliche, every tired, tired, stale pointless con talking point -- he must have rush plugge4d directly into what passes for his 'brain'. re4ally hilarious straw men too

'consider the wall with Mexico to be worse than the berlin wall, and compare the death penalty to the Holocaust' did you just make that up? no I guess not. you don't have the capacity. you're not even as original as a trained seal. more like one of those mechanical dolls where you pull its string and it pukes out some moronic drivel.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

"If Sanford runs, he wins the primary hands down, and probably the presidency."

"How dumb can you be? Apparently, very, if you are a Democrat."

Try not to sound more dumb than the people you are insulting. Just a tip.

Posted by: Adam Hammond | December 12, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Ooooh, the Osbama fun has started already!!!

We're going to absolutely ROAST him. We'll marinate him in his own far left liberal lies!!!

This is gonna be good :)

We'll ruin Barack HUSSEIN Obama so badly that his wife will divorce him and his kids will change their names.

If you thought "Call Me" and the Swift boaters were bad you'd better get ready!

We're going to shred Osbama to pieces!

Get ready to be DESTROYED, Barack Hussein!

Whoever realized that Osbama and Ahmedinejad dress the same should be immediately hired as a GOP consultant.

I should be a GOP ad maker. I have a few ideas.

To start with, a picture of Barack Hussein with a photoshopped Osama beard over his face.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Here we go again...
*The Media's New Rock Star

By Howard Kurtz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, December 12, 2006; 7:42 AM
Let's face it: The minute Obama gets into the race--a prospect that Newsweek now puts at 80 percent--the gloves come off, the investigative reporters start crawling over every piece of paper he ever signed, and he begins the long descent toward ordinary mortal*
I can't wait!!
At least none of the GOP contenders is being called a "rock star" embarassing and pathetic. The future leader of the free world should hopefully strive for more substance than "hope" and rock-star status. Deaniacs can now call themselves Obamiacs. Anon, that includes you, right?

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:31 AM | Report abuse

"Following discussions with the Bush administration, several of Iraq's major political parties are in talks to form a coalition whose aim is to break the powerful influence of the radical Shiite cleric Moktada al-Sadr within the government, senior Iraqi officials say. The talks are taking place among the two main Kurdish groups, the most influential Sunni Arab party and an Iranian-backed Shiite party that has long sought to lead the government. They have invited Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki to join them. But Mr. Maliki, a conservative Shiite who has close ties to Mr. Sadr, has held back for fear that the parties might be seeking to oust him, a Shiite legislator close to Mr. Maliki said. ... The Americans, who are frustrated with Mr. Maliki's political dependence on Mr. Sadr, appear to be working hard to help build the coalition. President Bush met last week in the White House with the leader of the Iranian-backed Shiite party, Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, and is to meet this week with the head of the Sunni Arab party, Tariq al-Hashemi. ... The visits of Mr. Hakim and Mr. Hashemi to the White House are directly related to their bid to form a new alliance, a senior Iraqi official said."

Shiite leader Ayatollah Abdul Aziz Hakim, is head of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) and its attendant Badr Brigade militia. (Hakim is scheduled to arrive in Washington next week on an official visit.)...

--So presumably, this is what Romney and Rudy and McCain all favor -- what Bush is doing: giving support to the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq, which is supported by --Itan. Got that little cons? Hakim is a terrorist and your party is a bunch of appeasers and losers.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:26 AM | Report abuse

CBS? You mean the Communist Broadcast Network?

Anyone who would compare Terry Nelson, who made the "call me" add to "hitler, goebels, and mussolini" is a delusional, retarded, moron.

But I'm not surprised to hear such logic, considering that you liberal clowns consider the wall with Mexico to be worse than the berlin wall, and compare the death penalty to the Holocaust (yet support abortion.)

How dumb can you be? Apparently, very, if you are a Democrat.

You liberals should have lived in Chile during the 80s. General Pinochet would have fixed your wagon.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Man, President Bush's numbers are just plain awful. A new CBS poll finds his approval rating at 31%, with a staggeringly low 21% approving of his handling of the Iraq war -- the lowest number he's ever received, CBS says. Pessimism about the war is at an all time high, even worse than it was at the same point during the Vietnam War: "Opposition to the war is now taking on historic proportions, with 62 percent saying it was `a mistake' to send U.S. troops to Iraq -- slightly more than told a Gallup Poll in 1973 that it was a mistake to send U.S. forces to Vietnam."

"By a 2-1 margin, Americans now say they have more confidence in congressional Democrats to handle the war than in the president," the poll continues. "Nearly six in 10 Americans want to see some kind of a drawdown in U.S. troop levels, including 25 percent who want all U.S. forces removed from Iraq."

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:15 AM | Report abuse

WaPo hires a winger hit man -- just another ho hired to bash Dems by the rightwing media:

A bit more about John Solomon, the long-time Associated Press investigative reporter who's been hired away by the Washington Post.

A number of his pieces feature key distortions and omissions that serve to pump their conclusions up to the edge of what may have been supportable by the facts.

Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) has been a favorite target of Solomon's this past year. In February, Solomon wrote a story pulling the senior Democrat into the Abramoff mess. The piece repeatedly mentioned that an Abramoff associate lobbying Reid. Yet he did not mention that Reid voted against the measure Abramoff's team was pushing.

In May he hit Reid again, this time for accepting passes to a boxing match from the Nevada Gaming Commission. That story -- riddled by key omissions like Solomon's referring to Reid's free passes to the match as "tickets" (which have a face value).

And in October, Solomon reported that Reid had scored "a $1.1 million windfall" on land that "he hadn't personally owned ... for three years." But Reid did not make a million-plus on the deal; his profit was around $700,000. Further, Solomon's story relied on a misleading characterization of Reid's ownership of the land, that confused the nature of the transaction.

Solomon hasn't limited these types of stories to one target. He scored a hit on Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) this November, shortly after the Massachussetts senator made his infamous "botched joke." In his piece, Solomon experiments with causal fallacies, using 24-year-old comments by Kerry as material.

And just to drive home Solomon's rep as an "easy mark" for stories, earlier this month the award-winning investigator wrote an oddly incurious article about the White House's privacy oversight panel and how it had satisfied itself that the NSA was protecting Americans' constitutional rights, even as the rest of the world lambasted the do-nothing board.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:14 AM | Report abuse

'McCain's strong on the military, which is something the country needs in it's next president.'

What this country needs in its next president is someone with a brain -- so it won't be a GOP.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:09 AM | Report abuse

'Terry Nelson is an unmitigated genius' --yeah, so were hitler and goebbels and mussolini.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:08 AM | Report abuse

also --'Now, it is one thing to have a last name that sounds like Osama and a middle name, Hussein, that is probably less than helpful. But an outfit that reminds people of a charter member of the axis of evil, why, this could leave his presidential hopes hanging by a thread. Or is that threads? '

So this is what the smear machine has decided its got to go on, get it? This is what you will be hearing. Obama has a funny time and he doesn't wear a tie so he's a terrorist and a dictator.

Can't you just feel the substance, the intellectual wheels spinning?

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:04 AM | Report abuse

*I remain convinced an underdog will appear as the Republican nominee - McCain is dead politically (unless we include the opinions of the pundits and the money handlers)*

Jeez, Bobby. What makes you think McCain's dead politically? He could be very attractive to independents and moderate dems; especially as an alternative to HRC or Obama/Kucinich/Daschle/Clark....

McCain's strong on the military, which is something the country needs in it's next president.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | December 12, 2006 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Terry Nelson is an unmitigated genius.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 11:03 AM | Report abuse

what passes for thinking in republican circles:

The senator was in New Hampshire over the weekend, sporting what's getting to be the classic Obama look. Call it business casual, a jacket, a collared shirt, but no tie.
It is a look the senator seems to favor. And why not? It is dressy enough to suggest seriousness of purpose, but without the stuffiness of a tie, much less a suit. There is a comfort level here that reflects one of Obama's strongest political assets, a sense that he is comfortable in his own skin, that he knows who he is.

If you want a striking contrast, check out Senator John Kerry as he campaigned back in 2004. He often appeared without a tie, but clad in a blazer, the kind of casual look you see at country clubs and lawn parties in the Hamptons and other toned (ph) locations.

When President Bush wanted in casual mode, he skipped the jacket entirely. Third-generation Skull and Bones at Yale? Don't be silly. Nobody here but us Texas ranchers.

You can think of Bush's apparel as a kind of homage to Ronald Reagan. He may have spent much of his life in Hollywood, but the brush-cutting ranch hand was the image his followers loved, just as the Kennedy sea ferry look provided a striking contrast with, say, Richard Nixon, who apparently couldn't even set out on a beach walk without that "I wish I had spent more time at the office" look.

But, in the case of Obama, he may be walking around with a sartorial time bomb. Ask yourself, is there any other major public figure who dresses the way he does? Why, yes. It is Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who, unlike most of his predecessors, seems to have skipped through enough copies of "GQ" to find the jacket-and-no-tie look agreeable.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Bobby, I hope an underdog emerges, though the field is very crowded.

McCain will be hard to defeat in the primary. Even though he has ZERO grassroots support, he has the support of the GOP leadership, and insiders (the invisible primary) like the Rangers and Pioneers, who think he is the most likely winner of the primary.

He will be even harder to defeat since there is no other candidate for the conservative base to rally around.

Huckabee looks like Nixon, is old, and is a Mexico-lover. He also has a very mean style, and is a big government, big spending "conservative", who loves social programs, and is weak on the death penalty.

Brownback suffers from basically the same problems as Huckabee except he is not mean.

Neither are true conservatives.

Every other possible major GOP contender is a certified moderate.

What will probably happen is that no other candidate will get enough support, and by default McCain will win.

It's still possible that Sanford might get into the race, especially if Huckabee doesnt run. If Sanford runs, he wins the primary hands down, and probably the presidency. But Sanford has given indications he will not run, though he could still change his mind. It's possible McCain has secretly offered him the VP spot, in exchange for him staying out of the primary, or supporting McCain.

However if McCain has promised Sanford the VP spot, that will be news to Tim Pawlenty, who is kissing McCain's *** hoping to be VP.

If Sanford doesn't run, I can't think of another viable GOP candidate aside from those already in the race, except for Jeff Sessions. Sessions is adored by the GOP base, though he is very conservative and may not be able to pick up swing states like OH.

However if Sessions ran, GOTV for the GOP would be no problem.

GOTV would be a huge problem if McCain wins the primary!

A run by Tom Coburn or James DeMint would also excite the base. They have only been in the Senate since 2004, but hey, Obama is doing it, so why can't they?

But they won't since they are more intelligent than Obama, and realize they dont have enough experience to be president. Also they are not arrogant media baskers like Barack Hussein.

There has been some very limited talk of Perdue (Gov GA) or Rounds (Gov SD) running, but I think that the people of those states (as well as TN, SC, MN, etc) have just reelected those governors and want them to govern for the first two years of their administrations, instead of running for president.

If that's the case, all of the governors reelected in 2006 will be out for 2008 presidential consideration.

However they will all be available for the VP slot, and I bet Sanford, Pawlenty, and Blunt (who wasnt up in 2006) will all be on the SHORT, short, list for VP. All of these men are considering running in 2012 as well.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 10:57 AM | Report abuse

For you, Chris--

Mitt Romney is toast over his '94 gay-rights letter:

"I'm not sure how Romney thought he was going to overcome his past support for abortion and gay rights. But while many social conservatives flirted with him, fact is, someone who promises to support gay rights even more so than Ted Kennedy ain't going too far."

Posted by: jana | December 12, 2006 10:56 AM | Report abuse

"As President Bush weighs changing course in Iraq, Americans are increasingly pessimistic about the war and want most U.S. troops withdrawn within a year, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Friday through Sunday says. Three of four support the major recommendations unveiled by the Iraq Study Group last week.

"Most predict the administration won't implement the bipartisan commission's proposals, however. And fewer than 1 in 5 have 'a great deal' of trust in Bush to 'recommend the right thing' for the United States to do in Iraq.

--war supporters now in the 25% or lower ranger. the shrinking hardcore.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:55 AM | Report abuse

w--that proves to me you're actually a eunuch. big talk is evidence of nothing to talk about.

"At an event last month in New York City, I got into an interesting conversation with some notable journalists. The topic was John McCain. More specifically, the topic was why so many notable journalists give such a free ride to John McCain. And, of course, it only took about 30 seconds before we came up with a consensus answer: McCain is at ease around journalists, he gives them access, he's not afraid to think out loud --- all of which is so unlike so many contemporary pols, who treat the press like dirt unless they are armed in advance with robotic talking points that are bound to make them look good. It's a simple formula, really: Give access, get good press . . .

"And it continues to pay off. Even though '08 GOP candidate McCain continues to curry favor with the religious conservatives leaders whom he once condemned as 'the forces of evil,' he is still widely described as a 'maverick.' Even though McCain was ranked in 2005 (by as the third most conservative U.S. senator, he is he is still widely described as 'independent.' Even though he has flip-flopped lately on a number of issues (he voted against the Bush tax cuts in 2001, but voted to extend them last winter), he is still widely described as a 'straight-talker.'

"One of his effective selling points, during his failed '00 presidential bid, was his image as a boat rocker, an insurgent in full cry against the Republican establishment. But now, today, we have further factual evidence that the old labels should not apply. Reports indicate that he has hired, as his 2008 campaign manager, one of the most notorious hardball specialists of the Republican establishment."

He's talking about Terry Nelson, the man who made the bimbo ad against Harold Ford.'

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:53 AM | Report abuse

why -- of all people is Rudy Guiliani at the top of the list as the Number One leader in our country? The answer is simple, and dramatic.

"This favorability poll proves the power of the Right Wing's ongoing and successful strategy of 'SELL and SMEAR' . . .

"With concentrated and coordinated efforts between the conservative movement organizations, political leaders and the press, we have been SOLD the myth of Rudy Guiliani as a strong leader just as they've SMEARED John Kerry to the point where he is, sadly, damaged goods contemplating the potential end of a thirty-plus year career of service."

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:47 AM | Report abuse

actually, more like 343 feet!!!

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Iran hosted a conference yesterday of Holocaust deniers - including KKK cuckoo David Duke.
"There must be freedom of speech," declared Duke, the Louisiana-bred former Ku Klux Klan head. "It is scandalous that the Holocaust cannot be discussed freely."

David Duke -- your typical KKK republiKlan

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:36 AM | Report abuse

'The trail proving Romney is a liberal is as long as my...well, its pretty long.'

--about two inches, I'd say, from the way you need to boast and swagger. Most cons belong to the Barely There Club. That's why they're always so angry. You ever notice how all of the ads on con talk radio are for 'performance enchancing' drugs? There's a reason for that.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I have always said that the main reason I like this blog is that as a group the regulars are a good cross section of the country -

The fact Romney has no interest coming from the bloggers is indicative of the direction of his campaign - it is going now where -

I remain convinced an underdog will appear as the Republican nominee - McCain is dead politically (unless we include the opinions of the pundits and the money handlers)

The more interesting question is, who among the Republicans is the underdog who at the 11th hour will capture the ear of the Republican voters? - It's not Romney

Bobby Wightman-Cervantes

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Mitt Romney is a liberal flip flopper who thinks he can fool conservatives into thinking he is one of them.

The trail proving Romney is a liberal is as long as my...well, its pretty long.

Past speeches, legislation he supported, etc.

He is certainly no conservative.

Go back to Massachusetts Romney.

Posted by: William | December 12, 2006 10:11 AM | Report abuse

this is quite possibly the most boring post i have ever read, though the "whale" post comes in a close second.

Nothing about Kucinich declaring?

Post another Line for Senate seats up in 08 or take a look at the dark horses of each party or something.

That would be interesting

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Sea ice that for centuries has covered much of the High Arctic has been shrinking at a record pace due to global warming, and as winter began last month in the oceans surrounding the North Pole, larger stretches of open water remained free of ice than ever before, climate scientists reported Monday.

The extent of Arctic sea ice is a key signal of the world's warming rate, and its effects are widespread: Immensely valuable fisheries shift from the coasts of one continent to another, algae and plankton disappear in some areas and increase in others, Arctic wildlife becomes endangered, and torrents of fresh water from melting ice alter the salinity of seas far to the south.

Where only a few months ago experts were predicting that if the present rate of warming continues unchecked there could be no sea ice left in the Arctic by the end of this century, the latest climate calculations indicate the seas there could well be totally ice-free by 2040, the specialists warned.

The latest assessment of global warming and its effects came at the opening of the American Geophysical Union's annual meeting in San Francisco, where more than 15,000 scientists are gathering at Moscone Center this week to present new data from their research in topics as varied as earthquakes, weather, oceanography and space research.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 9:46 AM | Report abuse

'The founding pastor of a second Colorado church has resigned over gay sex allegations, just weeks after the evangelical community was shaken by the scandal surrounding megachurch leader Ted Haggard.

Haggard, a gay-marriage opponent, admitted to unspecified "sexual immorality" when he resigned last month as president of the National Association of Evangelicals and pastor of the 14,000-member New Life Church in Colorado Springs. A male prostitute had said he had had sex with Haggard for three years.

On Sunday, Paul Barnes, founding pastor of the 2,100-member Grace Chapel in this Denver suburb, told his evangelical congregation in a videotaped message he had had sexual relations with other men and was stepping down.

On the videotape, which The Post was allowed to view, Barnes told church members: "I have struggled with homosexuality since I was a 5-year-old boy. ... I can't tell you the number of nights I have cried myself to sleep, begging God to take this away."

Barnes, 54, led Grace Chapel for 28 years. He and his wife have two adult children.'

Shakespeare had it right -- 'thou doth protest too much'. I think most hard right anti-gay zealots are -- gay. They're so terrified of it they have to try to repress it everywhere they see it. There seems to be a particularly high percentage of 'religious' men who are gay.

Too bad the 'compassionate' conservatives can't find it in their heart to love their fellow humans, as Jesus would have. But the truth is, most cons don't know the meaning of hte word. Look at the cons who come here for the sole reason of spreading bile and hatred. That's the republican party.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 9:22 AM | Report abuse

'The Post goes inside with Democratic leaders in Congress announcing they will put a stop to all earmarks until they enact changes to lobbying rules.'

Oh my, the big-spending Repugs must be weeping and throwing tantrums in the hall of congress today... they got cut off at the knees.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Do you suppose it's still a 'major priority' for Mitt to give gays 'the full human rights they deserve' like he said when he was campaigning last time?

Posted by: drindl | December 12, 2006 9:07 AM | Report abuse

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