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Just Helping With Inquiries

From the Associated Press: FBI raids U.S. senator’s home

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Federal agents searched the home of U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens on Monday, focusing on records related to his relationship with an oil field services contractor jailed in a public corruption investigation, a law enforcement official said.

Stevens, 83, has been under a federal investigation for a 2000 renovation project more than doubling the size of his home in Girdwood that was overseen by Bill Allen, a contractor who has pleaded guilty to bribing Alaska state legislators.

Allen is founder of VECO Corp., an Alaska-based oil field services and engineering company that has reaped tens of millions of dollars in federal contracts.

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July 30, 2007   Comments Off on Just Helping With Inquiries


Anna Quindlen of Newsweek has an interesting piece that will be published in the next issue: How Much Jail Time?

The piece starts with a look at an individual who goes to anti-abortion protests and asks the people what kind of punishment the women who have abortions should be subjected to as a result. It is a logical question – if abortion is illegal, there has to be a penalty for breaking the law.

Worth reading, but the people who really need to read and discuss it won’t.

July 30, 2007   12 Comments

This Is Troubling

CNN reports: Chief Justice tumbles at Maine summer home

WASHINGTON (CNN) — Chief Justice John Roberts has been taken to a hospital as a precaution after falling at his summer home, the Supreme Court said Monday.

Roberts was conscious after the fall, which happened at his vacation home near Port Clyde, Maine, Supreme Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg told CNN.

A witness said Roberts fell on a dock, and his injuries did not appear serious.

Roberts was taken by private boat from Hupper Island to the mainland. An ambulance then transferred him to the Penobscot Bay Medical Center in nearby Rockport, St. George Fire Chief Tim Polky told CNN.

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July 30, 2007   2 Comments

Minimum Requirements

All kinds of people complain about immigrants not making an effort to learn English or learn about the United States. I think before we complain about newcomers we need to make it a rule that you have to read and understand the Constitution before you can run for Federal office.

I can’t remember the first place I saw this today but Josh Marshall covers the situation in Dog Ate My Constitution: a member of Congress apparently unaware that in addition to the President and Vice President every Federal office holder subject to Senate confirmation is also subject to impeachment.

The congresscritter in question is Ellen Tauscher [DLC-CA10], the chairperson of the New Democrat Coalition, the DLC cell in Congress. I don’t know which would be worse: she didn’t know, or she’s looking for an excuse not to act.

Congress has never had to impeach a member of the Cabinet before, because they usually had the sense to resign, or the President had the sense to fire them. The Hedgemony has no sense, so impeachment has to be rolled out.

Update: Michael of Musing’s musings notes that, in fact, even after he resigned, Congress went forward with the impeachment of U.S. Grant’s Secretary of War, William Belknap, in 1876 but none of the five counts received the two-thirds votes of the Senate necessary.

July 30, 2007   2 Comments

Still No Kitty Litter In Sight

More information on the TIA post below from an unnamed source talking to CNN: Former U.S. official: Gonzales ‘splitting hairs’ in testimony

WASHINGTON (CNN) — A dispute within the Bush administration in 2004 over a secret surveillance program centered on data mining, not eavesdropping, a former government official told CNN Sunday.

The distinction, first reported by the New York Times Sunday, is critical because it will likely be at the heart of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ defense against allegations by Democrats that he committed perjury in sworn Senate testimony about the controversy.

Gonzales testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee last week there was no domestic surveillance — something President Bush reiterated to the nation in late 2005.

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July 30, 2007   2 Comments