Compiled by Mary Grace Lucas
CNN Washington Bureau
NY Times: Looking for Liberty
ACCORDING to the film “National Treasure,” the Declaration of Independence is a document of such far-seeing sagacity that it has secret codes and treasure maps hidden in the parchment. You just have to know how to look for them. But that poses the question: which document, precisely, is the Declaration of Independence?
CNN: How the Democrats survived until Unity
There was no way you could miss the point - they wouldn't let you. Last week Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama held their first joint campaign rally, in a town called Unity, in a field outside the Unity Elementary School.
Washington Post: Where Will Fredo Pop Up Next?
First he popped up at Friday night's baseball game between the Nats and the O's. Next thing you know, he's in the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday as an op-ed columnist. So, is this the beginning of an Alberto R. Gonzales re-emergence in public, 10 months after he resigned from a somewhat-less-than-successful 2 1/2 -year tenure as attorney general?
The Guardian: McCain backers roll out new ads as campaign team reshuffled
Republicans moved yesterday to boost John McCain's prospects of winning the White House, with a reshuffle of his campaign staff and a hardhitting new television advertising campaign in midwestern industrial states.
Dallas Morning News: During visit to Mexico, McCain pledges to aid U.S. neighbor in drug fight
Appearing before Mexico's drug-fighting Federal Police, John McCain promised Thursday that as president, he would quickly implement a U.S. aid package to give the officers more helicopters, technology and training.
LA Times: Team Obama's convention game plan calls for stadium rally
Gridiron fans, move over. The Obama campaign hopes to turn the last evening of the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Aug. 28 into a giant rally of voters in a football stadium.
Bloomberg: Condoleezza Rice Says She's `Proud' of Decision to Invade Iraq
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said she's "proud" of the U.S. decision to wage the Iraq war and insisted that the world is not more dangerous than it was when George W. Bush took office.
AP: Rep. Young taps campaign to pay aide's lawyers
With an election-year corruption investigation looming, Rep. Don Young has tapped his campaign war chest to pay not only his own million-dollar legal tab but also to hire lawyers for his campaign manager, who is also under FBI scrutiny.
Washington Post: Gay-Marriage Opponents To Boycott McDonald's
A group that opposes same-sex marriage has called for a boycott of McDonald's, saying the fast-food giant has refused "to stay neutral in the cultural war over homosexuality."
NY Times: Target: Barack Obama. Strategy: What Day Is It?
Despite a three-month head start, Senator John McCain has struggled to solidify lines of attack against Senator Barack Obama for the general election, Republican operatives say and some of his own advisers acknowledge, running into problems that bedeviled Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s primary campaign against Mr. Obama.
Washington Times: American pride highest in the world
Soaring gasoline prices, tumbling stocks, the war, the nukes, the bickering between political parties as trouble looms. It is not the most serene Fourth of July on record, certainly. Yet, despite collective and persistent anxieties, the nation's patriotism remains very much intact. Alive and well, in fact.
Washington Post: Jobs Report Keeps Congress Busy During Break
The Department of Labor announced today that the U.S. economy lost 62,000 jobs in June, and the fact that the House and Senate are in recess this week hasn't stopped lawmakers from both parties from weighing in on what Congress should do about it.
NT Times: Obama Fuels Pullout Debate With Remarks
Senator Barack Obama said Thursday that he might “refine” his policies for Iraq after meeting with military commanders there later this summer. But hours later he held a second news conference to emphasize his commitment to the withdrawal of all combat troops from Iraq within 16 months of taking office.
NY Times: McCain Winds Up Latin Trip in Mexico
From the white roses he laid before a likeness of Mexico’s blessed saint, the Virgin of Guadalupe, to the endorsement he gave for an overhaul of American immigration laws, Senator John McCain used a visit to Mexico on Thursday to appeal to residents of both sides of the border: Mexicans and, more urgently, their voting relatives and other Latinos in the United States.
Washington Post: Debate Over Guantanamo's Fate Intensifies
The Bush administration is developing a long-range plan to empty the Guantanamo Bay military prison that could include asking Congress to spell out procedures for scores of suspected terrorists whom the government does not plan to bring to trial, administration officials and others familiar with high-level White House discussions on the issue said yesterday.
Washington Times: Black pastors wary of Obama
Conservative black pastors nationwide are caught between irreconcilable opposites – congregations that overwhelmingly favor Sen. Barack Obama versus their personal doubts about the Illinois Democrat's politics, particularly on abortion.
AP: Obama: Mental distress can't justify late abortion
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama says "mental distress" should not qualify as a justification for late-term abortions, a key distinction not embraced by many supporters of abortion rights.
Washington Post: Obama Defends Compromise on New FISA Bill
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama responded yesterday to supporters dismayed by his support for a compromise version of the Foreign Intelligence Suveillance Act (FISA).
Washington Times: U.N. ambiguity adds to image as paper tiger
At an Egyptian resort this week, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe preened with the other African leaders, seemingly oblivious to Security Council calls echoed by his peers that he negotiate with the opposition after a flawed election.
AP: Bush's final G-8 summit may be harmonious
The issues are as difficult as ever, but the conditions are likely to be more conducive to agreement as President Bush attends his eighth and final economic summit of industrial democracies.
CNN: Military breaks ground for new Walter Reed facility
Less than two years after reports of decrepit conditions at the nation's most prominent military hospital, the military broke ground Thursday for the new Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
Washington Post: The Economy? Words Fail Me.
Think you're worried about the economy? Phillip Swagel is a wreck. The assistant Treasury secretary for economic policy, Swagel came out for his monthly economic briefing yesterday, 90 minutes after the Labor Department reported that the country had shed jobs in June for the sixth straight month.
Washington Post: Latin America Policy at a Crossroads
Sen. John McCain's trip to Colombia and Mexico this week made one thing clear: The shape of the United States' relationship with Latin America will hinge on the outcome of the 2008 election.
Washington Times: Latin America trip stirs Chavez debate
John McCain on Thursday finished a three-day presidential campaign trip to Latin America to mine the politics of free trade and foreign policy, but Republicans say the real vote mother lode may lie in the politics of a country he didn't visit – Venezuela, and its combative president, Hugo Chavez.
WSJ: Political Diary: The Terminator's Terminator
The John McCain campaign decided it had to do something completely different on Wednesday as it finally reacted to a chorus of complaints that its message was muddled, its public events uneven and its organization lagging. It installed Steve Schmidt, until now an ultraintense counselor to the campaign, as its operations manager.
Washington Post: Former Driver for Bin Laden Seeks Delay in Military Trial
Lawyers representing Osama bin Laden's former driver asked a federal judge yesterday to halt his fast-approaching military trial so they may have time to continue challenging the legality of the military commission system.
AP: GAO says Pentagon failing to commit weapon funds
Increased costs and delays in delivering vital weapons to soldiers in war zones are due partly to a lack of full funding for those systems, according to a government audit.
NY Times: Copying Issue Raises Hurdle for Bush Pick
As chief counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Michael E. O’Neill helped steer the Supreme Court nominations of John G. Roberts Jr. and Samuel A. Alito Jr. through the confirmation process. An expert on judicial nominations, Mr. O’Neill later spoke with pride to a legal magazine about helping place “some difficult federal judicial nominees” onto the lower federal courts.
AP: Overseas contract loophole is closing
A multibillion-dollar loophole that would have let contractors escape reporting abuse of taxpayer dollars spent abroad is being closed. The loophole was quietly inserted last fall into Justice Department plans to crack down on government contract fraud and waste. It exempted overseas contracts, however, despite more than $102 billion spent on taxpayer-funded projects in Iraq and Afghanistan alone since 2003.
AP: Senator asks if nation's drivers should slow down
An influential Republican senator suggested Thursday that Congress might want to consider reimposing a national speed limit to save gasoline and possibly ease fuel prices. Sen. John Warner, R-Va., asked Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman to look into what speed limit would provide optimum gasoline efficiency given current technology.
Washington Times: Patriotic lyrics bought for a song
Today we celebrate what America is all about: life, liberty and the pursuit of … great junk. Three weeks ago, a New York City man — who requests anonymity so as not to spoil his cover for future bargain hunting — perused a Manhattan flea market and paid $10 for an ugly print of a flower. A steal! He figured that nice, wood frame was worth the price and much more.
AP: Pa. historians baffled by vanished Lincoln bust
Few of the 3,000 historic postcards in Jack Hiddlestone's collection are as veiled in mystery as the one with Abraham Lincoln on the front. The postcard, from 1909, depicts an ornate stone pillar decked out with bronze eagles and lions and topped by an enormous bronze bust of the nation's 16th president. Along the bottom of the card are the words "Lincoln Monument, Nay Aug Park."