Friday, October 19, 2007

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for FRIDAY, OCT. 19, 2007 – 2:25 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Senate Nears Conference on Energy Bill
  • Southwick Nomination May Come to Senate Floor Next Week
  • Senators’ Letter Sells for $2.1 Million
  • GOP Rep. Jindal in Lead as Louisiana Voters Choose New Governor
  • And Finally ...
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Today in Washington

The House is not in session; reconvenes Monday at 12:30 p.m. for debate only, with legislative business beginning at 2 p.m.

The Senate continued debate of the fiscal 2008 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill (HR 3043) and adjourned until 2 p.m. Monday.

The President makes a statement on Burma sanctions; has no other public events scheduled.

In Washington,  the Family Research Council holds its Values Voter Summit from Oct. 19-21. GOP presidential candidates attending today include Sen. John McCain, Ariz.; Rep. Duncan Hunter, Calif.; Rep. Ron Paul, Texas; Rep. Tom Tancredo, Colo., former Sen. Fred Thompson, Tenn., and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Washington Hilton & Towers, 1919 Connecticut Ave. N.W.

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Top Stories

Senate Nears Conference on Energy Bill

After negotiations with key Republicans, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Friday he was prepared to seek a conference with the House on energy policy legislation.  [Read More]

Southwick Nomination May Come to Senate Floor Next Week

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid signaled Friday that the Senate may take up the controversial nomination of Leslie Southwick to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.  [Read More]

Senators’ Letter Sells for $2.1 Million

A letter from 41 Democratic senators denouncing conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh was sold Friday for $2.1 million, according to the eBay auction Web site.  [Read More]

GOP Rep. Jindal in Lead as Louisiana Voters Choose New Governor

Louisiana voters choose a new governor Saturday, with two-term Republican Rep. Bobby Jindal the solid front-runner. The only lingering question is whether he will draw the outright majority needed to avoid a Nov. 17 runoff election.  [Read More]

And Finally ...

Even in death, Rosa Parks has had some trouble getting her due. But that may soon change. Congress acted in 2005 to memorialize the godmother of the Civil Rights movement with a likeness in Statuary Hall. Nearly two years after Rep. Jesse L. Jackson’s bill became law, there is still no statue of Parks in Statuary Hall, which is home to several prominent figures of the Confederacy, including Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Alexander Hamilton Stephens at the behest of their home states. The Senate passed a bill by voice vote late last night that would extend the Dec. 1 deadline for acquiring a statue and give the Architect of the Capitol two more years to engage in the process of commissioning the work. That will clear away some bureaucratic obstacles that have blocked progress to date. Now that the bill has passed the Senate, Jackson, D-Ill., is working to get it considered under expedited floor procedures in the House.  [Read More]

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---------------------------------

Political Clippings

CQPolitics.com reports that personal wealth stands to play a major role in the race to succeed Republican Rep. J. Dennis Hastert in Illinois’ 14th District. Republicans Chris Lauzen and Jim Oberweis and Democrat Bill Foster led in total receipts as of Sept. 30, with personal loans or contributions comprising 60 to 80 percent of each man’s total. Lauzen, an Illinois state senator, had raised the most of all the candidates through Sept. 30, with $546,000 in overall receipts and more than $528,000 in cash on hand. Oberweis, his main GOP opponent, reported $422,000 in receipts, but only one-third of Lauzen’s cash on hand. In the Democratic race, Foster, a businessman and physicist, had more than $540,000 in total receipts and $407,000 cash on hand, far outstripping his nearest opponent, attorney Jotham Stein, and John Laesch, who lost to Hastert in 2006.

According to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., is hiring top-level campaign staff and giving every indication that he intends to run for a third term next year, despite the devastating brain hemorrhage suffered last December. To head up his campaign staff, Johnson has tapped Steve Jarding, “a veteran Democratic Party operative known best for running the successful effort to unseat Sen. George Allen in Virginia and running Mark Warner’s successful gubernatorial campaign in Virginia.” Johnson also has obtained campaign office space and hired additional campaign staff, the paper reported. He has a history of late announcements, so his delay in making his candidacy official is nothing unusual, the paper said. He did not announce his two previous Senate campaigns until spring of the election year. “Johnson now has $2 million cash on hand for his campaign,” the paper noted.

The Baltimore Sun reports that former Maryland Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. “threw his weight last night behind state Sen. Andrew P. Harris’s bid to unseat nine-term Republican Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest,” an unusual slap at a sitting congressman of his own party. “Recalling a 2004 episode when Gilchrest testified against Ehrlich’s proposal to legalize slot machine gambling, Ehrlich praised Harris for being a ‘team player’ in a state where Republicans must work together to fight the politics of majority Democrats.” Gilchrest, 61, is a moderate who represents Maryland’s 1st District, which covers the Eastern Shore and parts of Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Harford counties. “According to the most recent campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission, Harris has raised $528,510 and has $402,304 on hand. Gilchrest reported $182,075 in contributions, with $414,099 left to spend.”

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
DETROIT: Mayor Ready to Settle Whistleblower Suits
BOSTON: EPA: Cut Phosphorus in River by Half
NEW YORK CITY: Mayor Wants to End Off-Track Betting
KANSAS: Power Plant Rejected over Carbon Emissions
CALIFORNIA: Hundreds of Sex Offenders Not Monitored

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Political Trivia

Rep. Susan A. Davis, D-Calif., was raised in Richmond, Calif., the daughter of a pediatrician father. She was studying social work in graduate school in North Carolina when she met Steve Davis, who was studying to be a psychiatrist. They married, and spent two years in Japan while he served in the Air Force. When the family returned stateside and eventually settled in San Diego, Davis became active in community affairs, joining the League of Women Voters. She also worked at the local public television station. (Source: CQ.com Member Profiles)

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Thursday, October 18, 2007

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for THURSDAY, OCT. 18, 2007 – 2:29 P.M.

In This Issue

  • House Fails To Override Bush’s Veto of Children’s Health Bill
  • Democrats Dismayed by Mukasey’s Views on Executive Power
  • Democrat Tsongas Takes Her House Seat
  • Hastert Expected to Make Early Exit From House
  • House Panel Approves Two Small Business Measures
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Today in Washington

The House welcomes newly elected Rep. Niki Tsongas, D-Mass., after she is sworn in by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.; fails to override President Bush’s veto of a bill (HR 976) to reauthorize the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.

The Senate continues to consider the fiscal 2008 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill (HR 3043).

The President meets with Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

In Washington,  the School of Advanced International Studies holds a discussion on “Weathering the Storm: The Impact of the Financial Market Turmoil on European and Global Economies” with Joaquin Almunia, European Union commissioner for economic and monetary affairs. 5:30 p.m., Room 500, 1717 Massachusetts Ave., N.W.

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Top Stories

House Fails To Override Bush’s Veto of Children’s Health Bill

As expected, the House on Thursday failed to override President Bush’s veto of legislation to expand a children’s health insurance program, despite weeks of pressure from Democrats and outside advocacy groups.  [Read More]

Democrats Dismayed by Mukasey’s Views on Executive Power

Attorney general nominee Michael Mukasey signaled Thursday he shares the administration’s expansive view of President Bush’s authority to withhold information from Congress, skirt federal statutes and authorize harsh interrogation techniques.  [Read More]

Democrat Tsongas Takes Her House Seat

Democrat Niki Tsongas, a former community college dean and widow of Massachusetts Sen. Paul Tsongas, was sworn in as the newest House member Thursday, reducing the number of vacancies to two.  [Read More]

Hastert Expected to Make Early Exit From House

Former House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., plans to step down before his term is over, and perhaps as soon as Thanksgiving, a GOP source familiar with Hastert’s intentions said Thursday.  [Read More]

House Panel Approves Two Small Business Measures

The House Small Business Committee on Thursday approved two measures to reauthorize contracting and lending programs at the Small Business Administration.  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

CQPolitics.com reports that former GOP Rep. Charles H. Taylor of North Carolina, who was ousted by Democrat Heath Shuler in 2006, has apparently given up hope of a comeback bid. Taylor filed papers with the Federal Election Committee to close out his campaign committee and forgave $1.5 million he loaned his campaign. Local Republicans have grown increasingly frustrated with Taylor’s indecision, arguing it prevents other top candidates from getting into the race. Two Republicans have recently announced they intend to run: Asheville City Councilman Carl Mumpower and Henderson County Republican Party Chairman Spence Campbell.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner, a Democrat, has a strong lead over two Republicans seeking their party’s Senate nomination, according to a recent poll of 700 registered voters released Wednesday. The poll by Christopher Newport University’s Center for Public Policy showed 51 percent support for Warner, versus 27 percent for former GOP Gov. Jim Gilmore, with 21 percent undecided. Warner was favored by the same margin over Rep. Thomas M. Davis III, R-Va. The poll, conducted Sept. 27 to Oct. 1, had a margin of error of 3.7 percentage points.

The East Valley Tribune reports that Maricopa County, Ariz., treasurer David Schweikert resigned Wednesday to clear the way for an expected challenge to first-term Rep. Harry E. Mitchell, D-Ariz. Schweikert has for months operated an exploratory committee as he pondered a challenge. Former state Rep. Laura Knaperek and lobbyist Jim Ogsbury already have launched their GOP primary campaigns for the seat. State Rep. Mark Anderson, former Scottsdale councilwoman Susan Bitter Smith and Arizona Corporation Commissioner Jeff Hatch-Miller also are considering entering the race.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
COOK COUNTY, Ill.: Board Chief Pushes $888 Million Tax Hike
WASHINGTON D.C.: Cabbies Vow Strike over Meter Mandate
GEORGIA: Governor Vows Court Fight over Water
NEW JERSEY: Graft Charges Dismissed Against Six

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Political Trivia

Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., was raised in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., where her father, Ab Hermann, was executive director of the Republican National Committee for many years. She says her father taught her to get along with Democrats, including family friend Hale Boggs, the powerful Louisiana representative who rose to majority leader before disappearing on a plane flight in Alaska in 1972. (Source: CQ.com Member Profiles)

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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for WEDNESDAY, OCT. 17, 2007 – 1:43 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Chances Fading for Armenia Genocide Vote
  • Senate Committee Leaders Close Ranks on New Farm Bill
  • Senate Panel Approves Seven-Year Terrorism Insurance Extension
  • Mukasey Vows Independent Judgment as Attorney General
  • Senate Banking Panel Approves Flood Insurance Overhaul
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Today in Washington

The House considers legislation to govern electronic surveillance of foreign suspects (HR 3773) and to improve railroad safety (HR 2095).

The Senate considers the fiscal 2008 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill (HR 3043).

The President holds a morning news conference; participates with the first lady in a Congressional Gold Medal ceremony honoring the Dalai Lama at the U.S. Capitol.

In Washington,  IdentEvent holds a one-day conference focusing on identity management issues with industry executives, policy and security experts, government officials and analysts. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, will deliver the keynote address and various Homeland Security Department officials are scheduled to participate as panelists. All day. Grand Hyatt Washington, 1000 H St. N.W.

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Top Stories

Chances Fading for Armenia Genocide Vote

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi acknowledged today that an Armenian genocide resolution she supports might not make it to the House floor, as growing opposition spurred by fierce lobbying from the Bush administration and the Turkish government put its adoption in doubt.  [Read More]

Senate Committee Leaders Close Ranks on New Farm Bill

Members of the Senate Agriculture Committee have reached agreement on how to spend the limited funding they have for the 2007 farm bill, Chairman Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, said Wednesday.  [Read More]

Senate Panel Approves Seven-Year Terrorism Insurance Extension

The Senate Banking Committee approved legislation Wednesday to extend the nation’s terrorism insurance backstop for seven years, potentially setting up a conflict with the House, which has approved a longer and broader extension.  [Read More]

Mukasey Vows Independent Judgment as Attorney General

Attorney general nominee Michael Mukasey assured the the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday that he would employ his own legal judgment as head of the Justice Department and resign if his views veered sharply from President Bush’s position.  [Read More]

Senate Banking Panel Approves Flood Insurance Overhaul

The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee unanimously approved a bill Wednesday to overhaul the National Flood Insurance Program.  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

CQPolitics.com reports that Niki Tsongas, winner of Tuesday’s special election in Massachusetts’ 5th District, will be sworn in Thursday to replace former eight-term Rep. Martin T. Meehan, who resigned in July to become a college chancellor. Tsongas, a Democrat and widow of former Sen. Paul Tsongas, beat Republican opponent Jim Ogonowski by 51.5 percent to 45.3 percent. She will be the first woman in the Massachusetts congressional delegation since Republican Margaret Heckler lost a 1982 election after eight House terms.

The Houston Chronicle reports that Republican Shelley Sekula-Gibbs outpaced Rep. Nick Lampson, D-Texas, in fundraising in the quarter ending Sept. 30, but Lampson had more cash on hand. Sekula-Gibbs topped all candidates in Texas’ 22nd District in fundraising with $415,088, including $240,000 she loaned her campaign, according to the latest reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. Lampson raised $325,319 in the three-month period, but had a commanding lead over his GOP rivals in cash on hand with $679,418, compared to $465,399 for Sekula-Gibbs. Republican Pete Olson, who entered the race during the quarter, reported raising $217,825 and had $180,945 cash on hand.

MSNBC reports that Lynne Cheney, wife of Vice President Dick Cheney, revealed Tuesday that her husband and Democratic Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois — who wants to be the nation’s first black president — are eighth cousins. She said she discovered the two were related while researching her ancestry for her latest book, “Blue Skies, No Fences,” a memoir about growing up in Wyoming. “Every family has a black sheep,” Obama spokesman Bill Burton told The Associated Press.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY, Va.: County OKs Illegal-Immigrant Crackdown
NEW YORK STATE: State Pressure Brings Facebook Safeguards
PENNSYLVANIA: State Takes First Steps to Toll I-80
CALIFORNIA: Judge Mandates Interest Payments on Unclaimed Property
WISCONSIN: 68-Year-Old Gas Markup Law Voided

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Political Trivia

After joining the debate team in her senior year in high school, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., majored in political science at the University of Missouri and went on to law school there. She clerked for the Missouri Court of Appeals and interviewed for jobs as a prosecutor and as a public defender. The prosecutor’s office offered her a job first, and soon she was learning the ropes as an assistant prosecutor in Kansas City, specializing in sex crimes, homicide and arson cases. (Source: CQ.com Member Profiles)

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for TUESDAY, OCT. 16, 2007 – 2:33 P.M.

In This Issue

  • Leahy Expects Mukasey to be Confirmed as Attorney General
  • House Passes Four-Year Extension of Internet Tax Moratorium
  • House Poised to Rebuke State Department on Iraq Corruption Data
  • White House Pinpoints Veto Bait in Energy Package
  • Sen. Hutchison Eyes Gubernatorial Bid
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Today in Washington

The House considers a four-year extension of the moratorium on Internet access taxes (HR 3678); a resolution condemning the State Department for withholding information about Iraqi government corruption ( H Res 734); and a bill to protect reporters from being forced to disclose their sources, with some exceptions (HR 2102).

The Senate continues to consider amendments to the fiscal 2008 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill (HR 3093).

The President meets with the Dalai Lama at the White House; also meets with the President’s Commission on Care for America’s Returning Wounded Warriors.

In Washington,  the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and Virginia Quarterly Review hold a discussion and screening of the documentary, “South America: Untold Stories.” 6 p.m., 1779 Massachusetts Ave., N.W.

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Top Stories

Leahy Expects Mukasey to be Confirmed as Attorney General

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick J. Leahy said Tuesday he expects Michael Mukasey to be confirmed as the next attorney general.  [Read More]

House Passes Four-Year Extension of Internet Tax Moratorium

Despite grumbling from lawmakers who want a permanent ban, the House voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to extend for four more years a moratorium on taxation of Internet access.  [Read More]

House Poised to Rebuke State Department on Iraq Corruption Data

The House on Tuesday was expected to adopt a resolution condemning the State Department for withholding information about Iraqi corruption from the Oversight and Government Reform Committee.  [Read More]

White House Pinpoints Veto Bait in Energy Package

Democrats are pressing ahead with energy legislation that could impose stringent new requirements for vehicle fuel economy and renewable energy, despite a new threat from the White House that such provisions would lead to a veto.  [Read More]

Sen. Hutchison Eyes Gubernatorial Bid

Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, who is considering a gubernatorial bid in 2010, will not seek election to a fourth term in 2012, she confirmed Tuesday.  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

CQPolitics.com reports that Democrat Niki Tsongas is heading into today’s special election in Massachusetts’s 5th District with an smaller edge than expected over Republican Jim Ogonowski, a retired Air Force officer. A Boston WBZ-TV poll, conducted through Survey USA last week, had Tsongas up by nine points over Ogonowski, nearly the same spread as in a September poll. But support from independents had increased for Ogonowski to 13 percent from 7 percent. Frank Talty, political science professor at University of Massachusetts at Lowell, said independents are a “wild card” and could decide the race if enough show up to vote.

According to the Anchorage Daily News, Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, spent $184,708 on legal fees over the past three months, bringing his this year to $446,845, according to his latest campaign finance report. Young “has not said what kind of legal work or defense the campaign money is buying. He has been under federal investigation for his ties to Veco Corp., for fundraising activities and for his role in specific congressional earmarks, according to various media reports. ... Federal election law allows lawmakers and candidates to pay legal bills with campaign finance accounts.” Young, 74, ended the third quarter with $1.4 million cash on hand, the paper said, as he braces for challenges in both the primary and general elections next year.

The Denver Post reports that Democratic Rep. Mark Udall has far outpaced Republican former Rep. Bob Schaffer in fundraising for next year’s Senate contest, ending the third quarter with $3.5 million in cash on hand to about $1.2 million for Schaffer. State Senate president Joan Fitz-Gerald “edged past her Democratic primary opponents” in the race for Udall’s 2nd District seat, according to reports filed Monday. “Fitz-Gerald reported raising $387,598, compared with $368,761 from former state school board member Jared Polis, which included $19,639 he donated to the campaign. The third Democrat in the 2nd Congressional District race, Boulder environmentalist Will Shafroth, reported $208,259. “

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
THE SOUTHEAST: Drought Worst in 100 Years
THE MINNEAPOLIS REGION: $130 Million Deal OKd on Airport Noise
DELAWARE/NEW JERSEY: Supreme Court to Take Up Border Dispute
TEXAS: 750,000 Fined Drivers Owe State $620 Million

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Political Trivia

Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., was born and reared in Brooklyn, where his father, a Jewish immigrant from Poland whose family was killed in the Holocaust, was a paint salesman. His mother died at age 46 when Sanders was 19. His political philosophy of “Democratic socialism” was largely influenced by his older brother and later by his experiences as a student at the University of Chicago. (Source: CQ.com Member Profiles)

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Monday, October 15, 2007

CQ Today Midday Update

Highlights from today's news on CQ.com
Midday Update for MONDAY, OCT. 15, 2007 – 2:11 P.M.

In This Issue

  • White House Says Bush Still Open to Children’s Health Compromise
  • Broadcasters Launching Education Blitz on Digital TV Transition
  • Costs High in Medicare Drug Program, Democrats Say
  • Sen. Craig Appeals Ruling on Guilty Plea
  • Away from Capitol Hill, Reid and McConnell Are All Smiles
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Today in Washington

The House considers 15 measures under suspension of the rules, including a bill (HR 20) to promote research on the causes and treatment for postpartum depression and a measure (HR 507) to authorize grants to states to provide comprehensive eye exams and treatment for children with vision problems.

The Senate resumes consideration of the fiscal 2008 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill (HR 3093).

The President visits the Stribling Packaging and Display company in Rogers, Ark.; gives a speech on the budget in Rogers; attends a reception for Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., at a private residence in Memphis, Tenn.

In Washington,  Andrew S. Natsios, the President’s Special Envoy for Sudan, will deliver a talk titled “The Future of Sudan,” including a discussion of the refugee crisis in Darfur. 5 p.m., Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law, Room 204, 3600 John McCormack Road, N.E.

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Top Stories

White House Says Bush Still Open to Children’s Health Compromise

The White House repeated Monday that President Bush is open to a compromise with Democratic congressional leaders once his veto of a $35 billion expansion of children’s health programs is sustained.  [Read More]

Broadcasters Launching Education Blitz on Digital TV Transition

The broadcasting industry is unveiling a major education campaign Monday intended to give television viewers information about the impending 2009 transition to digital TV.  [Read More]

Costs High in Medicare Drug Program, Democrats Say

Medicare’s new prescription drug program, which is run by private insurance companies, is running up “high administrative costs, sales expenses and profits,” according to a report released Monday by the Democratic staff of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.  [Read More]

Sen. Craig Appeals Ruling on Guilty Plea

Sen. Larry E. Craig, R-Idaho, on Monday appealed a judge’s refusal to allow him to withdraw his guilty plea in a restroom sex sting.  [Read More]

Away from Capitol Hill, Reid and McConnell Are All Smiles

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — In a crowded university auditorium hundreds of miles from Capitol Hill, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., took time out Monday from their usual partisan sniping to display a different side to the Harry-and-Mitch relationship.  [Read More]

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Political Clippings

CQPolitics.com reports that the retirement of Rep. David L. Hobson, R-Ohio, is likely to bring a spate of GOP contenders in the Republican-leaning 7th District, which takes in all or part of eight counties in south-central Ohio. Hobson’s departure, announced yesterday, is the latest in a string of retirement announcements by congressional Republicans, who lost control of Congress in the 2006 elections. Hobson is the 14th House member, and the 12th Republican, who will not seek re-election in 2008. He’s also the third Ohio Republican who will be leaving the House at the end of next year. Rep. Ralph Regula said last week that he would not seek a 19th term in the Canton-area 16th District, and Deborah Pryce of the Columbus-centered 15th District also will be leaving. The Democratic field presently includes William Conner, who took 39 percent of the vote as Hobson’s 2006 opponent, and F. David Woolever, a pizzeria owner. Other Democrats are expected to consider a bid now that the popular Hobson is retiring.

According to the Casper Star-Tribune, Wyoming Democrat Gary Trauner “has an ‘exciting announcement’ planned for Monday, according to a press release. Trauner, who narrowly lost to veteran Republican Barbara Cubin in the race for Wyoming’s lone U.S. House seat in 2006, has widely been expected to run for Congress again in 2008. Last year, he lost to Cubin by 1,012 votes, a margin that was confirmed after a recount in Sheridan County. Cubin is currently serving her seventh term in the U.S. House. Prior to the race, Trauner’s only previous political experience was a stint on the Teton County School Board.”

The New Orleans Times-Picayune reports, “African-American voters in New Orleans, who confounded pundits twice since Hurricane Katrina by providing the votes that re-elected Democratic Mayor Ray Nagin and Rep. William Jefferson, now may well decide whether Republican Rep. Bobby Jindal avoids a runoff in Saturday’s gubernatorial race.” Polls show Jindal with 18 percent to 21 percent of votes from black voters, “twice the percentage he received in 2003. If those numbers don’t erode dramatically between now and Saturday’s primary, he should exceed the 50 percent margin to avoid a Nov. 17 runoff.

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Today on Governing.com

State and local government news from CQ’s sister publication
HENNEPIN COUNTY, Minn.: Deal Clears Way for New Twins Ballpark
CHICAGO: I.G. Probes Airport Management Contract
FLORIDA: Advocates: Boot-Camp Death Brought Reforms
INDIANA: EPA Blocks Steel-Mill Pollution Permit

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Political Trivia

In 1956, Rep. Leonard L. Boswell, D-Iowa, got married and was drafted into the Army, then went to officer training school. “Here I was, this green farm guy coming into all of this,” he recalls. “Someone said, ‘Do you want to go into flight school?’ And I thought, ‘Whoa, I’ve always wanted to fly airplanes!’ ” He became a lieutenant colonel and served 20 years. (Source: CQ.com Member Profiles)

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