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The National Republican Congressional Committee is technically insolvent, with millions more in debt than it has in the bank. The GOP can’t raise money–Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama each brought in roughly twice as much cash in the third quarter as the top GOP competitors–and can’t recruit candidates. The party’s base is demoralized and threatening to walk if Giuliani wins the nomination. Pete Domenici is just the latest Republican to announce he won’t seek re-election, Larry Craig is back in Congress, and the stench from the Mark Foley scandal remains strong. It would not be surprising if at least one or two once prominent Republicans–Curt Weldon, Conrad Burns, Tom DeLay–were indicted between now and next Fall.
Yet David Broder, the oracle of the Washington Post, has scanned the horizon and concluded, on the basis of insights gleaned from a conversation he had with Republican Congressman Tom Cole, that the 2008 electoral scenario looks promising for Republican congressional candidates. “Cole argues that the House Democratic leadership has made a strategic error by wielding its narrow majority to craft partisan bills that invite a Bush veto,” Broder wrote on Sunday. “Polarization is exactly what the voters hate, Cole said; they are looking for cooperation and agreement.”
Cole sure knows how to sweet talk Broder, who for decades has been pleading for “civility” and against “polarization” (which means that the two parties disagree about policy matters). The words “bipartisan consensus” put most people to sleep. In Broder, they prompt the same reaction that a New Orleans street hooker in high heels and a short skirt gets from Senator David Vitter.
Broder’s latest column has prompted some grumbling in the blogosphere about his being a stenographer for the GOP. But he’s not just a Republican stenographer–he’s perfectly capable of speaking to Rahm Emmanuel next week and concluding that the Democrats will pick up fifty seats in 2008.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Commentary — November 17, 2015, 6:41 pm
The Clintons’ so-called charitable enterprise has served as a vehicle to launder money and to enrich family friends.
Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.
The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.
Average speed of Heinz ketchup, from the mouth of an upended bottle, in miles per year:
After studying the fall of 64,000 individual raindrops, scientists found that some small raindrops fall faster than they ought to.
The Playboy mansion in California was bought by the heir to the Twinkie fortune, and a New Mexico man set fire to his apartment to protest his neighbors’ loud lovemaking.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”