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Morning Fix: The Kennedy Legacy



Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy. Washington Post photo by Nikki Kahn

Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy hasn't cast a vote in the Senate in nearly three months as he battles brain cancer but his influence over the chamber continues to be felt in a variety of ways.

The latest example is a new television ad from embattled Sen. Chris Dodd in which Kennedy seeks to -- in effect -- pass the torch on health care to the Connecticut Democrat.

"Quality health care as a fundamental right for all Americans has been the cause of my life, and Chris Dodd has been my closest ally in this fight," says Kennedy speaking directly to the camera. "I believe with Chris Dodd's leadership our families will finally have accessible, affordable health care.

Dodd, beset by ethical questions, has decided to hit the television airwaves nearly 18 months before the 2010 election in hopes of re-making his tattered image in the eyes of voters.

That Dodd would use the once-controversial Kennedy in an ad is a testament to two things: he is worried about a primary challenge (and knows Kennedy is viewed as royalty by party people), and that feelings toward the once-controversial Massachusetts senator have softened as he approaches the twilight of his days.

"As the years have gone by, Teddy has become a transcendent figure -- somehow managing to forge bipartisan compromises without losing his iconic liberal status," said Larry Rasky, a Boston-based Democratic consultant.

The transformation of Kennedy from partisan warrior to elder statesman is also reflected in his influence over the health care debate currently forming in Congress.

Kennedy's plan, which he outlined in a late May editorial in the Boston Globe, is almost certain not to be the final version of the legislation that emerges from the Senate but it did serve the purpose of laying down the liberal position on where health care should go -- staking a claim on reform to which other proposals have reacted.

And, Kennedy's staff on the Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee remain deeply engaged in the process of building the bill -- meaning that the Massachusetts senator's hand remains in the process even if he is not present.

The personal relationships forged by Kennedy over his more than four decades in the Senate -- particularly his close ties to Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, an influential Republican member of the Finance Committee -- could also play a role as the bill moves forward. Anyone who has spent time in the Senate knows that the chamber is built not on ideology but on relationships. The question is whether the pull of personal loyalty to Kennedy -- particularly as he battles for his life -- could help forge a bipartisan compromise on health care.

Much like the 2008 campaign -- where Kennedy's health limited his ability to be present on the trail but his presence was strongly felt in the rhetoric and messaging of President Obama -- the coming fight on health care and Dodd's reelection race are two examples of the influence that the Massachusetts senator still wields in politics.

Monday's Fix Picks: Why do people dress like they are in the Tour de France when biking around Alexandria?

1. Republicans bash Obama as timid on Iran.
2. How hard is Obama willing to fight on health care?
3. John Ensign isn't so popular anymore.
4. David Paterson convenes a special session!
5. Obama as super hero. Seriously.

Specter Hires Pollock, Mellman: Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) has hired Jef Pollock of Global Strategy Group to handle his polling and Mark Mellman, another Democratic pollster, to serve as an adviser to his 2010 reelection race. "Senator Specter is gearing up for another tough campaign," said Specter campaign manager Chris Nicholas. "He is very pleased to have Jef and Mark on board as both are top-notch Democratic consultants." Specter's party switch led to the resignation of Glen Bolger of Public Opinion Strategies as his pollster. Chris Mottola remained on as Specter's media consultant.

Republicans Roll Out Health Care Polling: Resurgent Republic, a group of GOP consultants, has new poll data that suggests the American people are not particularly eager for an overhaul of the country's health care system. More than eight in ten Americans say they are either very (45 percent) or somewhat (38 percent) satisfied with the care they and their family receive, according to the survey conducted by GOP pollster Whit Ayres. The data also suggests that a majority (52 percent) would rather their taxes were not increased even if it meant that not everyone would be covered; 39 percent said they would prefer a plan that covered everyone even if it meant a tax increase. And, the costs associated with health care weigh heavily on the minds of Americans in the Resurgent Republican data; health care costs led the way (with 19 percent) when the sample was asked to name their "greatest financial concern." Write Ayres and Ed Gillespie in a memo accompanying the polling: "Concern about runaway federal spending and mounting federal debt is the Achilles heel of the Obama health care plan." Expect this data to be cited relentlessly by congressional Republicans over the next two months as they attempt to beat back the Obama plan by raising questions in the mind of the public about the necessity and costs of overhauling the health care system. (Worth noting: A new New York Times poll on health care shows drastically different results. )

Charlie Boy Is In: Louisiana Rep. Charlie Melancon will run for Senate in 2010, a major recruiting success for Democrats who had struggled up to this point in finding someone to take on Sen. David Vitter (R). (The news was first reported by Mr. Louisiana -- John Maginnis -- in his "Louisiana Politics" newsletter.) Melancon was elected to his Cajun Country 3rd district seat in 2004 and has held it easily since. But, his decision to jump into a statewide race was likely influenced by the seat's underlying Republican roots (Sen. John McCain took 61 percent there in 2008) and the possibility that in a Republican-controlled redistricting in 2011 the seat could be eliminated entirely. Regardless, Melancon's candidacy gives Democrats a credible alternative to Vitter and is likely to draw significant national attention (and money) due to the Louisiana Republican's 2007 admission that he was involved in a prostitution ring run by the so-called "D.C. Madam." It also gives Democrats the best-nick-named couple -- Charlie Boy and Peachy -- running for office so far in 2010.

Vital $tats: The six campaign committees filed their May fundraising reports over the weekend. Here are the numbers you need to know: Republican National Committee ($5.8 million raised, $21.5 million on hand), Democratic National Committee ($8.4 million raised, $12.1 million on hand); National Republican Senatorial Committee ($4.5 million raised, $3.7 million on hand), Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee ($3.45 million raised, $4 million on hand); National Republican Congressional Committee ($3.2 million raised, $3.7 million on hand), Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee ($3.4 million raised, $5 million on hand).

Lame Father's Day Gifts: Politicians can -- and do -- take advantage of any holiday to collect emails and raise money. Father's Day is no exception. As we were out to lunch with Mrs. Fix, Fix Jr. and the Fix mother-in-law, an email arrived offering us the chance to sign a Happy Father's Day card for Ohio Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher (D) who is running for the Senate. We can only imagine the excitement Fisher will feel when he opens his electronic card and sees all the well wishes!

Say What?: "I don't know that he has the votes right now." -- Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) sending a message on health care to President Obama in an interview with CNN's John King.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 22, 2009; 5:05 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Comments

The tragedies the Kennedy family has had to endure are too much to bear. I believe John Jr. was assassinated before he announced a Senate run. As a pilot I had to testify. Not enough conclusive evidence (weapon never recovered). Very strong case he was shot down from a boat w/ EMP (electro magnetic pulse).

This may come out now that Obama is President. Same people that did his father? (read "Final Judgement" by Piper - based on first hand knowledge of John Jr.it is very credible).

Senator Kennedy's Aero Commander crashed because of a small barometric bomb which killed the pilot and an aid I was told, why this was never made public I don't know.

A powerful (off a helicopter) searchlight was set up at eye level on the bridge at Chappaquidick I understand (cops found telltale marks and knew of suspicious activity and a boat departure - they got away).

The "curse" from first hand knowledge of John Junior's case, seems to be ruthless assassins.

Posted by: copilot1111 | June 24, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse


I'm from Massachusetts and I'm not one of those Kennedy bashers. He has given me a gift. I watched his speech on Chappiquidick and I was determined to hone my oratorical skills. I studied the "investigation" and even took the time to talk to the some of the cops that were their that day and their stories galvanized my ideas about the integrity of our judicial system in Massachusetts. I was a chauvenist, and Senator Kennedy helped form my ideas concerning a respect for women.

My sense of justice, at times even my conversations with my immediate family, were influenced by Senator Kennedy he was a beacon, a consistent reminder of the dangers that existed and the price that one paid when they are ignored. What better lesson to be learned, even all his good deeds, all his selflessnes are overshadowed and cast to background - just read the comments

It is the press that does this to the poor soul they persist in presenting him as a someone to be admired.


Posted by: masssgt | June 24, 2009 6:46 AM | Report abuse

As Zouk forgot to mention it, he's copying from Free Republic today. Not creative enough to write something novel, not smart enough to hide his copying.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

this is my senator, a man for whom i have camp.since 1970. "NO PARENT SHOULD EVER HAVE TO DECIDE WHETHER THEIR CHILD IS $5.00 SICK OR $50.00 SICK." this has been his battle cry for over 35 years. AFFORDABLE HEALTH CARE FOR ALL. my home state of massachussetts has had in place, a form of this concept for at least that long.NEIGHBORHOOD HEALTH CENTERS that offer all manner of services to all who enter. and H.M.O. services. and PRIVET CLINICS for those who can afford them. all three types of health care oportunities are avalable. it works in senator kennedy's home state.....maybe, just maybe it could also work accross our nation.....just maybe.

Posted by: dhousand1 | June 22, 2009 6:13 PM | Report abuse

This is what Senator Kennedy has meant to me over a 55 year lifetime:

First, he has stood for essentially the same principles through the years. His vote is not for sale, he doesn't need the money. If you are a person down on your luck by virtue of race or social class, you have a friend in Senator Kennedy.

Second, he has endured more personal tragedy than anyone I know, and refused to retreat from the ring within which the tragedies occurred.

Third, having volunteered in his 1980 presidential campaign during the Pennsylvania primary, I can personally attest to the man's astonishing physical courage. The USA is blessed with many remarkably brave men and women, and Senator Kennedy is one of them. I will never forget his speech in Mellon Square in Pittsburgh, ten thousand snipers' nests available in office buildings and rooftops within a few hundred yards. I also recall the genuine affection with which he was regarded by his Secret Service detail during that campaign.

So long as I live, he will have an absolutely unique place in my political affections.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | June 22, 2009 6:10 PM | Report abuse

ALL OF THE NEGATIVE COMMENTS ABOUT "TEDDIE"
WERE WELL WRITTEN.IF HIS DEFENDERS THINK SO HIGHLY OF HIM THAN THEY ARE AS SMART AS
HE IS.HIS FATHER BOUGHT THE ELECTION FOR HIM AS WELL GOT HIM HIS ATTORNEY DEGREE THAT HE NEVER USED.ANYONE THAT THINKS HE DIDN'T HAS ANOTHER GUESS COMING.THE KENNEDY CHARM HAS RULED THIS COUNTRY FOR YEARS.THE KENNEDYS NEVER WORKED A DAY IN THEIR LIFE.JOE TOOK CARE OF THAT LIKE HE "BOUGHT"THE ELECTION FOR HIS SON JFK BY
MAKING A DEAL WITH THE LABOR UNION IN OHIO TO "MAKE THEIR MEMBERS VOTE FOR JFK.OF COURSE NOW ALL THE MIGHTY UNION MEMBERS WILL SAY THIS IS WRONG.OF COURSE THEY WILL SAY THIS AND CAN YOU EXPECT LESS.

Posted by: Rmarks003 | June 22, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

ALL OF THE NEGATIVE COMMENTS ABOUT "TEDDIE"
WERE WELL WRITTEN.IF HIS DEFENDERS THINK SO HIGHLY OF HIM THAN THEY ARE AS SMART AS
HE IS.HIS FATHER BOUGHT THE ELECTION FOR HIM AS WELL GOT HIM HIS ATTORNEY DEGREE THAT HE NEVER USED.ANYONE THAT THINKS HE DIDN'T HAS ANOTHER GUESS COMING.THE KENNEDY CHARM HAS RULED THIS COUNTRY FOR YEARS.THE KENNEDYS NEVER WORKED A DAY IN THEIR LIFE.JOE TOOK CARE OF THAT LIKE HE "BOUGHT"THE ELECTION FOR HIS SON JFK BY
MAKING A DEAL WITH THE LABOR UNION IN OHIO TO "MAKE THEIR MEMBERS VOTE FOR JFK.OF COURSE NOW ALL THE MIGHTY UNION MEMBERS WILL SAY THIS IS WRONG.OF COURSE THEY WILL SAY THIS AND CAN YOU EXPECT LESS.

Posted by: Rmarks003 | June 22, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Sen. Kennedy is an Icon! He is well respected and will always be a FORCE in the senate. I pray he gets well soon and continue his good work in Washington!!

Posted by: maripil | June 22, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Ted Kennedy, the man and the senator. Gd will be the final arbiter of Ted Kennedy's responsibility for those things he has done with his life, both the good and the bad. So, while you curse the man, please remember that without his presence in the Senate, people would still work for the same company all of their lives, only to be fired days before their pension vested, and be unable to put bread on their families' tables; more American children would be ill and never have a chance to reach adulthood; and all of us would have felt the impact of the current Bush/GOP depression more that we do now. Most of us thank Gd for his toil and efforts and will remember him for it.

Posted by: snmir1 | June 22, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Sorry Drindl, but how can you use George Will to make a point?

I subscribed to Newsweek largely for Will and Anna Quindlen, both very talented writers. Unfortunately, Will's writing ability is far better than his thinking ability. And that's why his credibility is so low.

Posted by: bulldog6 | June 22, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Ted Kennedy -- Gd will judge Ted Kennedy for those crimes he was responsible for in his lifetime. But, at the same time, Gd will note that without Ted Kennedy middle class and poor people would have suffered more in this GOP depression than they are now suffering; that there will be more healthy Americans than there would have been if he had not been in the Senate; and that many, many workers, who might have worked for one company all of their lives, would be laid off or fired days before their pensions vested and left to fend for themselves without the ability to get a job. Curse the man all that you want, but most of us will benefit from his legacy.

Posted by: snmir1 | June 22, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse


Any Federal government bailout of an insurance company such as AIG or the GM or Chrysler baiouts is based on what Constitutional authority ?

None, nada, zip....

Insurance company regulation is done on the state level by the insurance comissioners of the state in which the business resides thus AIG is the NY Insurance Commissioner's problem not Uncle Sam's.

As to GM and Chrsyler there is no constitutional provision for that either unless one goes through the bankruptcy process in which a bankruptcy judge has the authority under Chapter 11 proceedings.

Posted by: King2641 | June 22, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

And what role did it play in Stolen Election 2000? Again, Robert Parry:

The Brooks Brothers Riot – carried live on CNN and other networks – marked a turning point in the recount battle. At the time, Bush clung to a lead that had dwindled to several hundred votes and Gore was pressing for recounts. The riot in Miami and the prospects of spreading violence were among the arguments later cited by defenders of the 5-to-4 U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Dec. 12, 2000, that stopped a statewide Florida recount and handed Bush the presidency.

Backed by the $13.8 million war chest, the Bush operation made clear in Miami and in other protests that it was ready to kick up plenty of political dust if it didn’t get its way.

A later unofficial recount by news organizations found that if all legally cast ballots in Florida had been counted – regardless of which kinds of chads were accepted, whether punched-through, hanging or dimpled – Gore would have won Florida and thus the presidency. Gore also won the national popular vote, defeating Bush by more than a half million votes, making Bush the first popular-vote loser in more than a century to be installed in the White House. [Consortiumnews.com's "So Bush Did Steal the White House"]

answer -- YES.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Thats a valid point BSIMON, cannot say I can disagree. Most R's, once in power are to timid to follow through on cutting govt agencies.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

A Sample Ballot
While the siege of the canvassing board office was underway, county Democratic chairman Joe Geller stopped at another office seeking a sample ballot. He wanted to demonstrate his theory that some voters had intended to vote for Gore but instead marked an adjoining number that represented no candidate.

As Geller took the ballot marked “sample,” one of the Republican activists began shouting, “This guy’s got a ballot!”
In Down and Dirty, Tapper writes: “The masses swarm around him, yelling, getting in his face, pushing him, grabbing him. ‘Arrest him!’ they cry. ‘Arrest him!’ With the help of a diminutive DNC aide, Luis Rosero, and the political director of the Miami Gore campaign, Joe Fraga, Geller manages to wrench himself into the elevator.

“Rosero, who stays back to talk to the press, gets kicked, punched. A woman pushes him into a much larger guy, seemingly trying to instigate a fight. In the lobby of the building, a group of 50 or so Republicans are crushed around Geller, surrounding him. …

“The cops escort Geller back to the 19th floor, so the elections officials can see what’s going on, investigate the charges. Of course, it turns out that all Geller had was a sample ballot. The crowd is pulling at the cops, pulling at Geller. It’s insanity! Some even get in the face of 73-year-old Rep. Carrie Meek. Democratic operatives decide to pull out of the area altogether.”


Despite the use of intimidation to influence actions by election officials, Bush and his top aides remained publicly silent about these disruptive tactics. The Washington Post reported that "even as the Bush campaign and the Republicans portray themselves as above the fray," national Republicans actually had joined in and helped finance the raucous protests. [Washington Post, Nov. 27, 2000]

The Wall Street Journal added more details, including the fact that Bush offered personal words of encouragement to the rioters in a conference call to a Bush campaign-sponsored celebration on the night of Thanksgiving Day, one day after the canvassing board assault.

"The night's highlight was a conference call from Mr. Bush and running mate Dick Cheney, which included joking reference by both running mates to the incident in Miami, two [Republican] staffers in attendance say," according to the Journal. [Nov. 27, 2000]

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

On Nov. 22, 2000, after learning that the Miami canvassing board was starting an examination of 10,750 disputed ballots that had previously not been counted, Rep. John Sweeney, a New York Republican, called on Republican troops to “shut it down,” according to Down and Dirty. Brendan Quinn, executive director of the New York GOP, told about two dozen Republican operatives to storm the room on the 19th floor where the canvassing board was meeting, Tapper reported.

“Emotional and angry, they immediately make their way outside the larger room in which the tabulating room is contained,” Tapper wrote. “The mass of ‘angry voters’ on the 19th floor swells to maybe 80 people,” including many of the Republican activists from outside Florida.

News cameras captured the chaotic scene outside the canvassing board's offices. The protesters shouted slogans and banged on the doors and walls. The unruly protest prevented official observers and members of the press from reaching the room. Miami-Dade county spokesman Mayco Villafana was pushed and shoved. Security officials feared the confrontation was spinning out of control.

The canvassing board suddenly reversed its decision and canceled the recount. “Until the demonstration stops, nobody can do anything,” said David Leahy, Miami’s supervisor of elections, although the canvassing board members would later insist that they were not intimidated into stopping the recount.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

yeah drivl. I remember that. I was there. the Libs wanted to count votes in secret. We demanded that they be monitored.

I think you would make a good Iranian vote counter considering.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Let's take a moment to reflect upon one of the most historic episodes of the 2000 battle for the White House -- the now-legendary "Brooks Brothers Riot" at the Miami-Dade County polling headquarters.

This was when dozens of "local protesters," actually mostly Republican House aides from Washington, chanted "Stop the fraud!" and "Let us in!" when the local election board tried to move the re-counting from an open conference room to a smaller space.

_____In the Loop_____
• The Other Right Hand (The Washington Post, Jan 21, 2005)
• Lowering the Boom (The Washington Post, Jan 19, 2005)
• Al Kamen (The Washington Post, Jan 17, 2005)
• Inaugural Short Circuit (The Washington Post, Jan 14, 2005)
• Shipping Out for Inauguration Day (The Washington Post, Jan 12, 2005)
• More In the Loop


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With help from their GOP colleagues and others, we identified some of these Republican heroes of yore in a photo of the event.

Some of those pictured have gone on to other things, including stints at the White House. For example, Matt Schlapp, No. 6, a former House aide and then a Bush campaign aide, has risen to be White House political director. Garry Malphrus, No. 2 in the photo, a former staff director of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on criminal justice, is now deputy director of the White House Domestic Policy Council. And Rory Cooper, No. 3, who was at the National Republican Congressional Committee, later worked at the White House Homeland Security Council and was seen last week working for the Presidential Inaugural Committee.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

drivl, where is the other crazy cat lady - chrissuxcox? It seems a shame to rant without her. Must be lonely with all those voices in your head. but on the other hand, you must be encouraged by the addition of one who is at least as loony as you are. Imagine the possibilities.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"The "bourgeois riot" celebrated by Wall Street Journal columnist Paul Gigot helped stop the announced manual recount of the 10,750 undervote in Miami-Dade County. Instigated by an order from New York congressman John Sweeney to "shut it down," dozens of screaming GOP demonstrators pounded on doors and a picture window at elections headquarters. The canvassing board, which had already found a net Al Gore gain of 168 votes, reversed a decision it had made a couple of hours earlier to begin a tally of the undervote.

The mob gang-rushed a local Democrat carrying a blank sample ballot. They threatened that a thousand Cubans were on their way to the headquarters to stop the count. Several people were "trampled, punched or kicked," according to The New York Times. The canvassing board chair at first conceded that mob pressures played a role in the shutdown -- which cost Gore the 168 votes as well -- but later reversed his position. . . . .

Instead of condemning the Dade tactics, W. himself called the victory party that night to praise them, and Republicans invoked the specter of Jesse Jackson, who'd merely led peaceful protests outside election offices."

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

It's a shame the Dems are trying to use Kennedy's illness and his "legacy" to pass a health care bill that is just more Federal spending without any regard to funding source.

Posted by: hz9604 | June 22, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

So the left has a solution on health care - spend more and get less.

bunch of math wizzes those moonbats.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

A while back, I heard Obama bragging about his first few months in the White House. When he claimed he had done as much in that period as any president in history, my initial thought was that for the first time in his life he was being modest. Frankly, I think he’s done more, much more, and I only wish that some of it had been good for America.

A while back, I heard Obama bragging about his first few months in the White House. When he claimed he had done as much in that period as any president in history, my initial thought was that for the first time in his life he was being modest. Frankly, I think he’s done more, much more, and I only wish that some of it had been good for America.

One of the things that annoys me the most about Obama is how easily he lies. One of the things that annoys me about the media is the way they enable him to get away with it.

For instance, when he jammed through the trillion-dollar pork pie, he claimed it was so urgently needed, he couldn’t spare the legislators even 48 hours to plow through the 1,100 pages. However, once they passed the bill, Obama waited four days before flying off to Denver to sign it.

A second lie that recently went unquestioned by the media was Obama’s claim that he had only given President Sarkozy short shrift when he was in France because it was essential that he get back to the Oval Office and make those tough decisions that only he can make. And, sure enough, it turned out that within an hour of his return to Washington, he was on the golf course, making one of those gut-wrenching executive decisions -- deciding whether to use a putter or a sand wedge from the edge of a bunker.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

vbhoomes wrote, "For Gods sake DDAWD, lets not politize God. My guess is he wants no part of human partisan battles, he's got bigger fish to fry."

I take it this means you're Roman Catholic :)

Posted by: douglaslbarber | June 22, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Chicago-style, he has kept the Republicans out of serious policy negotiations but has allowed left-wing Democrats to veto a measure upholding his own decision not to release interrogation photos. While promising a politics of mutual respect, he peppers both his speeches and impromptu responses with jabs at his predecessor. Basking in the adulation of nearly the entire press corps, he whines about his coverage on Fox News. Those who stand in the way, like the Chrysler secured creditors, are told that their reputations will be destroyed. Those who expose wrongdoing by political allies, like the AmeriCorps inspector general, are fired.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Pawlenty was smart for getting out before getting defeated. Does't matter if you are a D or an R, if you are the incumbent, you got big problems."

On incumbents: I agree.

On Pawlenty specifically: we wussed out on the opportunity to actually shrink the size of government. Instead he's mostly playing budget games with the school funding to kick the can down the road. In other words: the reason 'conservatism' doesn't work is because conservatives haven't figured out how to actually cut spending without ticking off the electorate. Instead we get tax cuts and short term borrowing, letting the next administration solve the budget problems. It happened at the Fed level & is happening in MN right now.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 33% of the nation's voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-four percent (34%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -1. Today is the second straight day the President’s rating has been below zero.

Translation - we don't like cowards and wimps. got rid of Carter, regime change coming to US.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Pawlenty was smart for getting out before getting defeated. Does't matter if you are a D or an R, if you are the incumbent, you got big problems. Drindl, I am skeptical of the NY Times poll you quated. I would have to see several more polls to be convinced of those numbers. It has been reported the sampling grp was eschrewed. The NY Times is not an objective media outlet.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, back in the U.S., Obama chose vanilla custard with hot fudge and toasted almonds at local ice cream shop

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Ted's legacy:

Ted kennedy, as the drunken MURDERER of Mary Jo Kopechne, symbolizes the moral turpitude of the loony-left socialist d-crats.

He set the standard for the lack of integrity, ethics and conscience of all the loonies.

This is one reason why the pelsoi-hussein regime has become the MOST TAX CORRUPT GOVERNMENT IN HISTORY - lacking any moral foundation, it no surprise that nearly all loony-left socialist d-crats are TAX CHEATS like:

Tim Geithner, hussein’’s Secretary of Treasury and head of IRS
Charlie Rangle, Chairman, House Ways and Means Committee
Caroline “You Know” Kennedy, Loony-Left Princess
Keith Olbermann, The Most Biased Political Commentator on The Most Biased Loony-Left Liberal Cable Network
Tom Daschle - hussein’s candidate for HHS secretary
Kathleen Sebelius - hussein's SECOND candidate for HHS secretary
Nancy Killefer - hussein’’s candidate for chief performance officer
Hilda Solis - hussein’s candidate to be labor secretary
Ron Kirk - hussein's nominee for trade representative

Killer kennedy should have gone to jail for manslaughter - rather than allowed to go free thanks to the powerful influence of his well-connected family. He has been the longest-surviving disgrace to American values ever.

Posted by: LoonyLeft | June 22, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

72% of americans favor a public option in healthcare and are willing to pay higher taxes for it:

"The New York Times sort of buried this over the weekend, but reform advocates have taken note--a vast majority of Americans favor a major overhaul of the U.S. health care system, including the creation of a government-run public insurance option.

The poll found that most Americans would be willing to pay higher taxes so everyone could have health insurance and that they said the government could do a better job of holding down health-care costs than the private sector....

The national telephone survey, which was conducted from June 12 to 16, found that 72 percent of those questioned supported a government-administered insurance plan -- something like Medicare for those under 65 -- that would compete for customers with private insurers. Twenty percent said they were opposed.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

I know how health care can come down maybe the ceo's of ins co.s do not need to make 12 ml a yr problem will never be fixed until insurance is not for profit business like it used to be yrs agao

Posted by: lildg54 | June 22, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

AMERICA’S NATIONAL HEALTHCARE EMERGENCY!

It’s official. America and the World are now in a GLOBAL PANDEMIC. A World EPIDEMIC with potential catastrophic consequences for ALL of the American people. The first PANDEMIC in 41 years. And WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES will have to face this PANDEMIC with the 37th worst quality of healthcare in the developed World.

STAND READY AMERICA TO SEIZE CONTROL OF YOUR NATIONAL HEALTHCARE SYSTEM.

We spend over twice as much of our GDP on healthcare as any other country in the World. And Individual American spend about ten times as much out of pocket on healthcare as any other people in the World. All because of GREED! And the PRIVATE FOR PROFIT healthcare system in America.

And while all this is going on, some members of congress seem mostly concern about how to protect the corporate PROFITS! of our GREED DRIVEN, PRIVATE FOR PROFIT NATIONAL DISGRACE. A PRIVATE FOR PROFIT DISGRACE that is in fact, totally valueless to the public health. And a detriment to national security, public safety, and the public health.

Progressive democrats and others should stand firm in their demand for a robust public option for all Americans, with all of the minimum requirements progressive democrats demanded. If congress can not pass a robust public option with at least 51 votes and all robust minimum requirements, congress should immediately move to scrap healthcare reform and demand that President Obama declare a state of NATIONAL HEALTHCARE EMERGENCY! Seizing and replacing all PRIVATE FOR PROFIT health insurance plans with the immediate implementation of National Healthcare for all Americans under the provisions of HR676 (A Single-payer National Healthcare Plan For All).

Coverage can begin immediately through our current medicare system. With immediate expansion through recruitment of displaced workers from the canceled private sector insurance industry. Funding can also begin immediately by substitution of payroll deductions for private insurance plans with payroll deductions for the national healthcare plan. This is what the vast majority of the American people want. And this is what all objective experts unanimously agree would be the best, and most cost effective for the American people and our economy.

In Mexico on average people who received medical care for A-H1N1 (Swine Flu) with in 3 days survived. People who did not receive medical care until 7 days or more died. This has been the same results in the US. But 50 million Americans don’t even have any healthcare coverage. And at least 200 million of you with insurance could not get in to see your private insurance plans doctors in 2 or 3 days, even if your life depended on it. WHICH IT DOES!

Contact congress and your representatives NOW! AND SPREAD THE WORD!

God Bless You

Jacksmith – WORKING CLASS

Posted by: JackSmith1 | June 22, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

vbhoomes writes
"Expect massive layoffs and a sharp increase in unemployment next week when most states have to balance their budgets. It means incumbents who are running this year or next will probably be defeated. Watch NJ as an earlier indicator."

Or... Watch MN, in which Gov Tim "can't stand the heat" Pawlenty opted not to run for a 3rd term - because the budget mess will be worse then than it is now, or was when he first took office in 2003.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Expect massive layoffs and a sharp increase in unemployment next week when most states have to balance their budgets. It means incumbents who are running this year or next will probably be defeated. Watch NJ as an earlier indicator.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

@Penazoid - Just say Chapa... and Mary Joe... and we get it. The argument's been made, oh like a gazillion times on these boards.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:
------------------------------
You are right and EVERYBODY else is wrong!!

Posted by: hz9604 | June 22, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

So Dems haven't really been doing too badly compared to Republicans in fundraising. A little ahead for the overalls, a little behind for Senate, about the same for Congress.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 22, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

For Gods sake DDAWD, lets not politize God. My guess is he wants no part of human partisan battles, he's got bigger fish to fry.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

There is no great reference for Kennedy in this country except for the place where bad behavior seems to get overlooked by the buddy-buddy system: U.S. Senate. Chappaquiddick prevented Kennedy from ever making a statement about anyone else's behavior. There was a fall but no rise relating to Ted Kennedy.

Posted by: hz9604 | June 22, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Senator Kennedy:

Silent microwave radiation "directed energy weapons" induce injury, illness such as brain cancer, and cognitive impairment.

FED SECURITY AGENCIES FUND, OVERSEE NATIONWIDE VIGILANTE 'GESTAPO"

• Civilian vigilante volunteers fronted by federally-funded organizations such as Citizen Corps, Infragard and USA on Watch stalk, harass unjustly "targeted" persons and families with covertly implanted GPS tracking devices.

• Reports of torture, disabling injury from silent microwave radiation "directed energy weapons" widely deployed to local law enforcement under various federal programs from agencies that include the Justice Department.

• Feds, locals refuse to investigate victim complaints in nationwide cover-up of alleged atrocities -- an American social genocide/politicide.

WHEN WILL CONGRESS AND THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION WAKE UP AND RESTORE THE RULE OF LAW IN AMERICA?

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | June 22, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Sorry Drindl, but how can you use George Will to make a point?

I subscribed to Newsweek largely for Will and Anna Quindlen, both very talented writers. Unfortunately, Will's writing ability is far better than his thinking ability. And that's why his credibility is so low.

Posted by: bulldog6 | June 22, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

"Mary Jo will be footnote no doubt, but God is capable of rendering proper judgement, so let him do his job in that regards. My God is an extremely merciful God, so I am sure he will do okay in the afterlife."

Isn't god going to be pissed at him for voting against the Iraq war that he so badly wanted?

Posted by: DDAWD | June 22, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

"It just goes to show you the intelligence of the voters in Massachusetts."

Clearly smarter than the intelligence of the voters in whatever rathole, inbred state you hail from.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | June 22, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

"It just goes to show you the intelligence of the voters in Massachusetts."

Clearly smarter than the intelligence of whatever rathole, inbred state you hail from.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | June 22, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Naw Drindl it sounds like what I've heard from some hard core lefties when you mention Bush or Cheney. On a personal level I wish Ted Kennedy and his family well. His legacy will be he was an outstanding legislator who help push through some of the liberal agenda. Mary Jo will be footnote no doubt, but God is capable of rendering proper judgement, so let him do his job in that regards. My God is an extremely merciful God, so I am sure he will do okay in the afterlife. The real scandal was the judicial sysyem of Ma. that letting him walk on DUI manslaughter.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

@Cynics - Fair comment. I mainly objected to the beggar-thy-neighbor atttitude of the first poster. He's healthy? Good for him! Plenty of folks take care of themselves and get expensively sick as well.

We're lucky with regards to our son as the medical care he needs is minimal (appointment with a child psychiatrist every few weeks) and his schooling is covered through the Child Find program. [Note: I didn't complain for the 20 years of my adult life when I paid taxes and had no kids and feel no guilt that my kid is more expensive to school than others.]

"Health insurance is a privilege not a right."

I'm reminded of the Declaration of Independence (Life, Liberty...) Although I don't think that's what the Founders had in mind, denial of medical care is tantamount to denial of life. That's not truly relevant as emergency medical care is granted regardless of ability to pay.

The basic point regarding health care reform is that we have a system far more expensive than that of other countries and that doesn't produce better outcomes. That can't be spun any other way.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse


"I doubt BoStinks is a conservative, I've never met any conservatives who would wish excruciating death on anyone."

That's about ALL I've met, bhoomes. You must not read the comments section here, although of course it's not nearly as bad as on blogs like instapundit and red state, where posters tend to talk a lot about what they'd like to do to 'libs.' But you'll see plenty of hate directed at Ted Kennedy today, a man dying of brain cancer.

You remember 'compassionate conservatism'? That was a phrase created by a PR firm because they knew that it was an oxymoron, that compassion is one thing [among many others] that conservatives simply don't possess.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I don't go along with this lionization of a drunken bum like Teddy Kennedy. He left a girl to drown and walked away from it and has continued in his slimeball track ever since. The man's a clown and the people of Massachusetts deserve him.

Posted by: Penazoid | June 22, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Chris Dodd ought to be running scared. The man is a Wall Street sell-out.

The provision that he slipped in to allow bailed out execs at AIG and elsewhere to receive their fat bonuses, and then his subsequent lies about his involvement in inserting that language, was only part of Dodd's cozy relationship with Wall Street. Back in the early 1990s, he slipped some obscure language into a bill that was rushed through the Senate just before the Thanksgiving recess that essentially made it possible for the Fed to bail out investment and insurance firms, just as it can banks. The result? Wall Street insiders knew that they had a sweet government rope and went on a buying spree, first fueling the dotcom boom and then the housing bubble. Ultimately, we ended up with TARP and the Fed's off-balance cash infusions to various institutions, none of which have been publicly accounted for in any way. Dodd created the legal framework for this to happen.

So, yeah, Dodd should be running scared. But then he is also from Connecticut, where a lot of Wall Street traders have their homes, so no surprise that he is bought out by those interests.

Posted by: blert | June 22, 2009 10:22 AM | Report abuse

"Or, something has clicked and this is the first step in their starting to throw Ahmadinejad under the bus."


Hard to say. NPR this AM discussed the recent arrest of high-profile political activists; including the daughter of a former President who maintains close ties to the Ayatollah. They describe her as the 'public voice' for her father, who isn't able to go out in public. I wonder if this indicates further internal strife?

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers writes
"This section is going to be full of endless anti-Ted Kennedy comments in no time."

good point. I totally left T 'the Lion' K out of my derangement syndrome posts last week.

Conservatives complaining about ongoing BDS ought to look at the ongoing KDS before getting too bent out of shape. BDS could last for decades!


Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Part 3

The Interior Ministry will presumably next try to argue that these were irregularities owing to the mere overzealousness of the Iranian people. Perhaps, as happens with some regularity in the United States, people who thought they were eligible to vote but weren't nevertheless tried to and weren't screened properly by elections officials. But this explanation doesn't hold water -- voter eligibility is not a tricky matter in Iran. The Statistical Center of Iran reports that, as of the last census, there were some 47.7 million people aged 18 or older in Iran, which is the voting age in that country. By contrast, the widely-cited figure is that there were some 46.2 million eligible voters. Virtually all people aged 18 or older, evidently, are eligible to vote in Iran, which has very few non-citizens (only about 1.6 million according to official estimates).

This leaves only two possibilities: that there was widespread ballot-stuffing or that the results in some or all areas don't reflect any physical count of the ballots but were fabricated whole hog on a spreadsheet.

The Interior Ministry's goal here must be one of two things. Either they're hoping to gain credibility by arguing, in essence: "Sure, there was some fraud! But there weren't 11 million votes worth of fraud!", an argument that echoes the Ayatollah's specious comments from Friday. Or, something has clicked and this is the first step in their starting to throw Ahmadinejad under the bus.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Part 2

The spokesman, however, said that although the vote tally affected by such an irregularity is over 3 million, "it has yet to be determined whether the amount is decisive in the election results," reported Khabaronline.
For all the complex series of statistics that have been run on Iran's election, it's the simplest that might prove to be the regime's downfall. More people "voted" than were eligible to vote -- in a lot of places. The interior ministry admits to 50 such instances out of the 300+ jurisdictions in which Iran tallied results. That is widespread, prime facie and admitted-to evidence of fraud, and I don't see how the Guardian Council expects people to buy the argument that whatever caused the tub to overflow in those 50 cities was not also tainting the results throughout the rest of the country. The Chatham House report we linked to earlier today found that there were more "votes" than voters in two entire provinces.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

CC has an Iran link, so this is not a threadjack.

Worst. Damage Control. Ever. by Nate Silver @ 10:31 PM Part 1

I've generally tended to take the position that while the people running Iran are a bunch of reactionary thugs, they're at least a fairly intelligent bunch of reactionary thugs.

After this revelation on Iranian Press TV, however, I'm not so certain:

Iran's Guardian Council has admitted that the number of votes collected in 50 cities surpass the number of those eligible to cast ballot in those areas.

The council's Spokesman Abbas-Ali Kadkhodaei, who was speaking on the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) Channel 2 on Sunday, made the remarks in response to complaints filed by Mohsen Rezaei -- a defeated candidate in the June 12 Presidential election.

"Statistics provided by Mohsen Rezaei in which he claims more than 100% of those eligible have cast their ballot in 170 cities are not accurate -- the incident has happened in only 50 cities," Kadkhodaei said.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 9:47 AM | Report abuse

@margaretmeyers - Sorry to hear that. We've been lucky so far--our 3 1/2 year old is PDD NOS and has been in a great preschool program. So, he's made more progress than we could have hoped for. We'll see how it goes once he hits the mainstream.

Back to my original response to our 70 year old Methuselah. A healthy lifestyle does not guarantee good health (though doesn't help). Expensive illness can happen suddenly and so can accidents. That's the point of insurance.

I think we now spend about 50% more per capita on medical care than any other nation (my recollection is that the Swiss spend about 12%, we're about 17.6%). The outcomes in terms of health and life expectancy aren't better. I've got mine isn't a valid response any more.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Ol Chappequidick Ted is still around and telling everyone what to do. We need solutions not monetary redistribution. He is still a murderer.

Posted by: virgin12 | June 22, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Cynic--I understand your point, but disagree. A civilized society looks out for all of its members, not just the fit. I also have worked hard for my health insurance and spent several years working multiple jobs without any health insurance. But I would argue that universal health care will, in the long run, make health insurance cheaper for everyone.

Posted by: trep1 | June 22, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

BB posted:

"I wish everyone who wanted to harp on that topic today would just start their post with Chap... and we can assume the rest."

I thought my 8:03A post about "Chap..." had [meager but real] educational merit and was not subject to the common assumption. :-(

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

@ FairlingtonBlade - While the comment of “ad4hk2004” does seem a little harsh and he is putting everyone with health issues into the same pot, he has a point. I know you’re son did not choose to have autism. I do not know from experience, but it mush be very hard emotionally and financially to raise a son or daughter with autism. But I don’t see where it is the responsibility of the citizens to pay for the health care of individuals or family who can not afford it. I work very hard to provide insurance for my family. I also worked hard for many years without insurance, and if a health issue arose, I took care of the financial burden because it was mine and mine alone. Health insurance is a privilege not a right.

Posted by: TheCynics | June 22, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

This is not the true Kennedy Legacy. And it makes me uncomfortable to even use the phrase 'Kennedy Legacy' while Senator Kennedy is still alive and it fighting for his life against cancer. However, if we must, the true 'Kennedy Legacy' is one of public service, community activism, and social justice. It is a story of a family who chose public service not for power or fame and not because it pays well, because we all know it does not. The Kennedy brothers had family money, they did not need to work. But they believed in a cause greater than their own, they all, especially Bobby and Teddy believed that we are all connected and we all fail when a child goes hungry and and does not have access to adequate health care, regardless of her race or religion. They all entered public service to right the wrongs they saw in society. This is the true Kennedy Legacy. And God forbid, if the day comes and newspaper headlines proclaim the "Kennedy Legacy" let us remember what they truly stand for.

Posted by: caitlinzook | June 22, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

BB- I was up early getting my own Asperger's daughter off to summer school. High School had a rough start -- one of her teachers gave her a D for class participation. Go figure.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | June 22, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Sry for double posting, I didn't notice that new comments show up on top istead of at the end of the thread!

Posted by: Gray62 | June 22, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

CC links to a Nevada article on Ensign in which it is revealed that he doubled his innamorata's pay during the course of the affair.

In the private employment world this would be an "issue".
However, the offices of the President and Congresspersons are exempt from the same Title VII laws that would protect employees of most entities.

Pols continue to remind me that we have not come far from the days of "The Ballad of Big Jim Folsom"[c. 1946].

"Now he sits in legislature,
making laws for all mankind,
while she walks the streets of Coleman Alabama,
selling..."

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Chris, I just read your responses at the most recent live discussion. Quite lame, I have to say. I mean, you acknoledge that Dan supported you in the early days of The Fix, but you didn't even speak with him about his firing? D'oh.

I understand that in these days of decline for newspapers, every job is at stake, and that people are afraid to speak out. But I would have thought there's still at least a bit of solidarity among collegues. Even Dana Milbank came up with a half-jokingly (?) statement about it being more popular to fire the ombudsman (Debbie Howell in drag, with a new pseudonym?) than to fire Froomkin. Not much of support, but much more than you did offer.

Well, you sure know the famous words of Martin Niemoeller (if not, you know how to google, don't ya?). And that every bad deed gets its reward. Well, I don't want to wish you all the best in case you're the next to lose his job. I hope you get what you deserve.

Posted by: Gray62 | June 22, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

As an alternative to waterboarding, we could always threaten suspected terriorists with a ride in the car with Ted Kennedy. Either way, there is the fear of drowning.

Posted by: tifoso1 | June 22, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Chris, I just read your responses at the most recent live discussion. Quite lame, I have to say. I mean, you acknoledge that Dan supported you in the early days of The Fix, but you didn't even speak with him about his firing? D'oh.

I understand that in these days of decline for newspapers, every job is at stake, and that people are afraid to speak out. But I would have thought there's still at least a bit of solidarity among collegues. Even Dana Milbank came up with a half-jokingly (?) statement about it being more popular to fire the ombudsman (Debbie Howell in drag, with a new pseudonym?) than to fire Froomkin. Not much of support, but much more than you did offer.

Well, you sure know the famous words of Martin Niemoeller (if not, you know how to google, don't ya?). And that every bad deed gets its reward. Well, I don't want to wish you all the best in case you're the next to lose his job. I hope you get what you deserve.

Posted by: Gray62 | June 22, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

@Mark - The timing was perfect. Nguyen was a straight man in a comedy routine and didn't even realize it.

I wish everyone who wanted to harp on that topic today would just start their post with Chap... and we can assume the rest. Kinda like how Rush's callers start with dittos.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 9:05 AM | Report abuse

I doubt BoStinks is a conservative, I've never met any conservatives who would wish excruciating death on anyone. Sounds like somebody more from the hard core left.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 8:57 AM | Report abuse

BB, Margaret was obviously riding next to Nguyen on the same wifi enabled commuter train. How else can we explain her complete prescience?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 8:56 AM | Report abuse

@ad4hk2004 - I agree. My son brought his autism on by behaving like a pig in the crib. Perhaps you have a suggestion to remedy it.

@margaretmeyers - I'm surprised it took Tim Nguyen 10 minutes to get his licks in.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Let's see. The legacy of a cheating, mudering, drunk, fat-slob who never worked an honest day in his life.

I hope he suffers an excruciatingly painful death.

Posted by: BO_Stinks | June 22, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Kennedy has lost his position as a symbol of hated liberalism among Republicans but still remains a powerful tool for Dems and the president - a good deal for the left.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | June 22, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

I admit to continuing "Chappaquiddick" curiousity.

Thus I watched A&E's reconstruction with Bill Kurtis 15 years ago. As I recall, they made a case that TK was not behind the wheel that night.

It was not a "whitewash". The recorded show is still available at Amazon, but I do not think it can be found on line.

I never would have voted for TK for any office, but I recognize that he has served his country diligently since he seemed to begin to care about it in 1981.
His "plan" for universal health is to me the most unappealing of the current crop and is an example of why I could not vote for him even now. Still, I recognize the effort as not being for personal gain and intended as a public service. I wish him and his family well.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Health reform is the poster boy for a socialist empire..
As a 70 year old who has taken care of himself - non smoker, non drinker, reasonable weight, jog and lift weights - I resent that this democratic party demands a tax payer funded system that forces me to pay for the health care of people who behaved like pigs...
I will pay my own bills thank you - and you can do the same...

Posted by: ad4hk2004 | June 22, 2009 8:01 AM | Report abuse

Republicans bash Obama on Iran. They bash him on everything, but that's all they've got. It doesn't matter what he says or does. In any case, any R with brain agrees with Obama onthis:

"Lugar has been one of many Republicans who have been coming out and rebutting right-wing criticism on Obama’s approach to the Iranian protests. Last week, he said that becoming “heavily involved” in the Iranian election would be detrimental to U.S. interests."

"Since turmoil broke out in Iran over the country’s disputed elections last week, conservatives have been forcefully criticizing President Obama for not doing enough to intervene on the side of those protesting. Their criticism comes despite numerous expert opinions — even from Iranian human rights activists — that the U.S. should not meddle in the situation. This morning on ABC’s This Week, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) continued the attacks. “He’s been timid and passive more than i would like,” he said of Obama. Later on the program though, conservative columnist George Will called such criticism “foolish”:

WILL: The president is being roundly criticized for insufficient, rhetorical support for what’s going on over there. It seems to me foolish criticism. The people on the streets know full well what the American attitude toward the regime is. And they don’t need that reinforced.

In her Wall Street Journal column yesterday, Peggy Noonan, another conservative columnist and former speechwriter for President Reagan, denounced the right-wing attacks, particularly those from Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). “To insist the American president, in the first days of the rebellion, insert the American government into the drama was shortsighted and mischievous,” she wrote, adding that “the ayatollahs were only too eager to demonize the demonstrators as mindless lackeys of the Great Satan Cowboy Uncle Sam, or whatever they call us this week.”

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Ted Kennedy murders a young lady named Mary Jo Kopechne, and the voters of Massachusetts sentence him to life in the Senate. It just goes to show you the intelligence of the voters in Massachusetts.

Posted by: TheCynics | June 22, 2009 7:51 AM | Report abuse

Tmguyen, you really are one frothing rightwing hater, aren't you? One shrieking hysterical rabid wnger.

The resutls of the republican "poll' are garbage -- they even contradict themselves. So americans don't want health care changed, but...

" the costs associated with health care weigh heavily on the minds of Americans in the Resurgent Republican data; health care costs led the way (with 19 percent) when the sample was asked to name their "greatest financial concern."

LOL. I love to see how twisted the questions were to come up with that 'data'. What a joke.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 7:40 AM | Report abuse

As some have eluded to Ted Kennedy's legacy lays at the bottom of Chappaquiddick.
The man could solve all the world's problems tomorrow and he still would be noted for his philandering ways and what happened on that fateful evening.
No, conspiracy just the facts. How Mary Joe died shouldn't happen to a dog, but that is exactly how Ted Kennedy let her drown just like a dog.

Posted by: mleppla | June 22, 2009 7:37 AM | Report abuse

People simply pull their punches when it comes to Ted Kennedy because we know he's getting near the end of his life. Its just civilty. I see President Obamas approval ratings are now down to 53% according to the latest Rasmussen Poll. By next year they will be in the 30's and dems will be distancing themselves as they desperately try to hang on their seats. Its some of Obamas own doing and Bill Maher had it right. We just don't want to see him every single day. He's wearing out his brand with over exposure.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm... whose poll results do I find more credible on health care reform? Those from the New York Times/CBS, both well established and respected institutions or Resurgent Republic a group of partisans. I am always bothered when two unequal sides of an argument are presented otherwise. Gotta love The Fix!

Posted by: dkinmd | June 22, 2009 7:18 AM | Report abuse

IT'S TIME FOR TED KENNEDY TO PAY FOR THE DEATH OF MARY JO KOPECHNE. HE NEVER GOES TO JAIL FOR THAT CRIME. YES, HE CAN ...STAND ABOVE THE LAW BECAUSE OF HIS WEALTH AND POWER, BUT HE CAN ESCAPE PUNISHMENT FROM GOD!!!

The Chappaquiddick incident refers to the circumstances surrounding the 1969 death of Mary Jo Kopechne, a former staff member in Senator Robert F. Kennedy's 1968 presidential campaign. Edward Kennedy was driving a car with Kopechne as his passenger when Kennedy drove off Dike Bridge into Poucha Pond between Chappaquiddick Island and Cape Poge barrier beach. Kennedy swam to safety, but Kopechne died in the car. Kennedy left the scene and did not call authorities until after Kopechne's body was discovered the following day. He pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of an accident and was sentenced to two months in jail, suspended.
In January 1970, an inquest into Kopechne's death took place in Edgartown, Massachusetts. At the request of Kennedy's lawyers, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ordered the inquest be conducted in secret. Judge James A. Boyle presided over the inquest and his conclusion was that "negligent driving appears to have contributed to the death of Mary Jo Kopechne."
Under Massachusetts law, Boyle could have ordered Kennedy's arrest, but he chose not to do so. District Attorney Dinis chose not to pursue Kennedy for manslaughter.

Posted by: TIMNGUYEN1 | June 22, 2009 7:16 AM | Report abuse

Fix, you are ruining my day. This section is going to be full of endless anti-Ted Kennedy comments in no time. The boys on the right like to jump on him almost as much as they like to stick it to Mrs Clinton and Nancy Pelosi.

At least I know where they'll be. Shhh...here they come now.


Posted by: margaretmeyers | June 22, 2009 7:07 AM | Report abuse

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