July 4th, 2008
06:33 AM ET
6 years ago

POLITICAL HOT TOPICS: Friday, July 4, 2008

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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.

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-traildenver4-2008jul04,0,2964317.story

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."


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soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Willy

    Happy 4th of July to all legal Americans and yes even the democrats in Congress who want to instill European values on this great country.

    July 4, 2008 07:18 am at 7:18 am |
  2. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    John McCain is still fighting the so-called "war on drugs." This is the past ... some successes but overall not a real "war."

    I wish he would look at the present and head for the future: People are concerned about the high cost of fuel, the increase costs of food, health care, and the cost of war... and keeping a job.

    Others, those not struggling with survival, note the skyrocketing deficit, the balance of payments, and the housing market as an indicator of a recession (we're in one) ... and the chances of heading into a major recession .

    Some people have the luxury of being so secure they think that gary marriage, abortion and the war on drugs and wearing a flag pin (McCain doesn't) are at the top of the list .... for most of us – NOT!

    July 4, 2008 07:20 am at 7:20 am |
  3. joe smith

    nice to see Senator Warner suggest 55 mph; but his savings, millions barrels/day, is definately low; the last time Nixon put this in place, we saved 3 million barrels/per day; whatever, Bush is not one to pull the trigger on this one anytime soon; but give him a reason to take a swipe at Iran, this boy grabs the bat..

    July 4, 2008 07:28 am at 7:28 am |
  4. A nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    Hey Obama makes one sick. He goes around shooting off his mouth about taking care of the soldiers, but when the day of voting for the soldiers is here, guess who is awol. Yes, he missed the 2008 Defense Authorization Vote. Isn't he a piece of work?

    Like I've said before and will again, he is all cotton candy speeches, a lot of candy but no substance.

    We deserve a change but not his brand of change.

    July 4, 2008 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
  5. Alice in Florida

    ROFLMAO!!!!!!!! ...and CNN continues to spin favorably about skunk in a suit Obama, no matter HOW DISMAL the polls are – good thing because I don't think I could STAND IT if skunk in a suit was 30 points ahead as he should be at this point in time (even DUKAKIS was further ahead) considering the sorry mess we have in office now.....All Obama All the Time newscasters (and I use that term loosely when describing CNN = Obama, NOT Politics!!!!!) continue to spin, spin, spin........GASP!!!!!!!! Our hero is AHEAD in Connnecticut!!!!!! OMG, someone get Jack Cafferty smelling salts – I believe the man has fainted out of sheer happiness that his God is ahead in a state where even Barbara Bush would vote Democratic if she lived there!!!!!!!!

    You know WHY all we hear about skunk in a suit is trivia???????? Because that's ALL he is! LOL – a supposedly news station lets us know what TUNES he has on his Ipod, gushes over the fact that he wears a helmet while riding a bicycle, ruminates endlessly over the ghetto fist bump a.k.a. – LOL – "dap" with ugly vampire bat Jackie-wanna-be Michelle (I hope Charm School tells Michelle to LOSE the Jackie look – it's a travesty)

    Sigh.......if only Obama grew a pair as big as his wife the bat's, there would be REAL political news – if for example he took up McCain's challenge for town hall meetings – OH! But, um, uh, Hillary, um, uh, won't be, um, there, uh, um, for Bam Bam to, um, uh, agree, um, with, and WHAT WOULD HE DO WITHOUT A WRITTEN SPEECH ON THE TELEPROMPTER??????????? YOU are all RACISTS for even SUGGESTING that he think on his feet!!!!! HOW DARE YOU????? HE IS KING of ALL 57 (ROFLMAO!!!!!!!) states!!!!!!! Howard the Scream, Nancy the Crow, Frankenstein Jack, Oprah the Dancing Hippo, and Ted the Killer have proclaimed it, so therefore, it's a FACT

    Too bad "Selected Not Elected" Obama's balls aren't as big as his wife's – or his flappy ears – he skulks around like the snake he is – hiding from debate unless he has his pillow, and you are OBVIOUSLY RACIST if you don't provide it – OF COURSE! EVERYTHING is a racist plot – all White people ever DO is sit around and think of things like inventing AIDS just so we can bring down the noble Black man (I was immersed in the Black culture for three years, and I know how they interpret things............)

    He IS, however, VERY GOOD at, um, ch-ch-ch-CHANGES

    He changes as consistently as the wind does :)

    PUMA PAC

    July 4, 2008 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  6. Sugarlump

    IN RESCUE: AN OFFER FOR OUR TROOPS

    Both our pesidential candidates are being accused of 'Flip-Flopping' yet, in comparison, here's what we have:

    OBAMA'S 'WAH-WAH' RESPONSE TO PULLING THE TROOPS OUT OF IRAQ.
    Cry-baby, Barack Hussein Obama is blaming the heat of the press on the McCain's camp in accusing AND exposing him of 'Flip-flopping. Simply, Obama utilizes flip-flop ethics because he doesn't know what he's talking about, which shows, as a presidential candidate, does not conclude effectively on issues before speaking. Wholeheartedly, I AGREE with McCain on NOT pulling troops until the job is done. Obama does not have a clue re diplomacy.

    REASON: IF Obama makes the presidency, and pulls out 'Two (2) brigades a month' (as he NOW claims), would hurt our already shortage of troops. This un-wise move would also paint Americans as distrustful, cowards, bailers, flip-floppers, and a Country which goes back on its words.

    America's commanding officers have been working so hard at gaining the trust of foreign-land villagers towards counterinsurgency; but, as these natives claim: "If we help fight our own battles, the Talibans (and such terrorist groups) would only come back after the Americans leave" ... which makes perfect sense. Thus, pulling our troops out would only prove their distrust, as well as leave them to their own demise. American doesn't need a punk, but a strong president to lead the Home of The Brave.

    SOLUTION TO TROOP SHORTAGE.
    Pull the petty criminals out of jails across America and rehabilitate them; then make prison life for the hardened criminals ever harder. For example: Cable TV would become an 'earned' privilege only.

    Please hear me out ...

    - In teaching the petty crook pride in his/her country, would also bring pride in themselves. In turn, he or she would (most likely) develop self-confidence in becoming productive American citizens;

    - In serving his/her Country effectively & proudly, petty criminals' records would become expunged up to the age of 21;

    - At the end-term of serving his/her Country effectively & proudly, 80% of military benefits will be awared to 'war heros', and all other petty criminals will be eligible up to 30% to 50% in military benefits (depending on lenghth of service);

    - In lieu of killed in action, at least 25% of veteran payments will be awarded to spouse/children; and,

    - Relief by these petty criminals 'in number' (once conditioned & trained for battle), would allow a 2-month rest for our all ready over-extended, over-exhausted troops.

    Yes, it is a Law that those with criminals records cannot serve in U.S. armed forces, however, our elected President, with the backing of 'We The People', could push this onto Congress - with as much urgency as Barack Hussein Obama was pushed upon the American public. As a whole, WE COULD DO THIS!!! We can have this Law, which protects the petty criminal from serving his/her country, Amended.

    THINK ABOUT THIS: Many petty criminals commit crimes so they don't have to serve their country. Many see 'jail' as 3 square meals a day, cable TV, computer fun, exercise equipment work outs, etc; yet, AMERICA CRIES FOR ADDITIONAL MAN/WOMAN POWER AND OUR TROOPS NEED HELP ASAP!!! ... SO LETS PUT THESE PETTY CRIMINALS TO WORK IN SERVING THEIR COUNTRY. Together, we CAN get this criminal 'protection' Bill Amended. "VOTE MCCAIN".

    --------------------------–
    Thx for listening .

    July 4, 2008 08:04 am at 8:04 am |
  7. saga4obama

    GoObama

    July 4, 2008 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  8. ron

    i hope they start pointing out how obama's insulting the intelegence of his supporters as well as the news media (cnn not included as they are helping him do it. this man as redifined his position on everything from how his father got to the USA to is church, nafta, public financing, the war, hillary clinton, fisa ect. hopefully it will be pointed out he as to do this because after commiting himself he is educated on the subject because he was ignorant of the facts having no experience it's the old rev wright thought strategy, of distort, lie and justify.

    July 4, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  9. saga4obama

    seems like this is becoming John McCNN network...

    July 4, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  10. Ann Romero

    I recently read that the Obama plans to add to a 300 billion package aid to the poor countries giving the United Nations total control an amount equal to 845 billion dollars. People what is wrong with our country we are in spending high prices at the gas pump, at the grocery stores and pay deceases. People are losing jobs in this country, we are in a recession and they want to give 845 billion to help poor countries. That simply means our taxes are going up 2,000 per household. American need health care in this country, put the money in a new health care plan. No one will look out for American, this government will not change, it will remain the same.

    July 4, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  11. Ted:Canada

    From Canada
    Hard to see how anybody would vote for the Republicans after 8 years of disaster.
    This is not about Obama or McCain!
    Would American's really vote for four more years? WOW!

    For those of you voting Republican this time around, can we humbly ask that you not visit Canada in the near future? THANKS

    We have a rule about "stupid" people coming into our country and if the Republicans do win, WE ARE BUILDING A BORDER WALL .

    CNN you need to undertake a poll about the relative intelligence of Republicans against the general population. I think you will find "the" problem?

    July 4, 2008 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  12. rose of nashville, tn.

    Mccain may be reshuffling his staff but he's spending more time flying the airways to look presidential then to actually campaign to be president, nor has he said one word that makes any sense about the economy, jobs, or gasoline prices. what's his policy ? To complain about obama and hope for the best, it seems as though he doesn't have one unless it's to fight a war that nobody wants.

    July 4, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  13. kip

    Ted in Canada, you are wrong. This is about Obama. Sadly everything is about Obama. From what is on his iPod, what he eats for breakfast to his bowling scores. Sadly, Americans are buying into a test marketed image – everything that is allowed to be seen from this man and his wife is strictly scripted and well-planned. There is nothing that comes out of their mouths that has not been hased over, rehashed over by his advisors who then tell him what to say. This is why there is no debates between he and McCain right now despite his big words of anytime, anyplace. Mindless people will not do anything as an individual – they have to feel like they are "in", "with it," "keeping up with the Jones."

    July 4, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  14. slm, Ity

    If he was white the lead would have been much wider considering the situation the country is in, but as they say long live the United States of Racists(America).....

    July 4, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  15. Nate

    Obama is an ignorant ego maniac. He stands for change all right. He changes wenever the poles do. If he is elected this country is sunk.

    July 4, 2008 11:13 am at 11:13 am |

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