Fragility = Power for Pelosi.

A mostly political Weblog.
Nov. 20 2006 7:11 PM

Fragility = Power for Pelosi

It would be too humiliating for her to fail.

(Continued from Page 3)

Now they tell us, Part XXVIII: THe NYT's military analysts discover that many anti-war figures, including General Zinni, think the Dem-proposed "phased withdrawal" strategy in Iraq is a really bad idea! ... Update: But NBC's Andrea Mitchell is reporting that "phased withdrawal," accompanied by "deadlines" will be the recommendation of the Baker-Hamilton commission! ... 4:35 P.M.

Even the liberal Joe Conason is disappointed in Pelosi:

As Ms. Pelosi takes up her constitutional responsibilities, she will hear many people say that she is no different from her tainted predecessors, that all politicians are crooked, and that Democrats are just as compromised as Republicans. Her most important responsibility is to prove those clichés untrue, but her attempts to enforce her personal agenda have only made that crucial task more difficult.

If she fails to deliver reform, her historic reign will be disappointing—and possibly quite brief.

2:35 P.M.

"Murtha Calls Ethics Bill 'Total Crap'": Pelosi's pick off to a great start!. ... P.S.: If Tom DeLay said that, you think it might get some coverage?... You'd think this might sink Murtha. [Update: No. Update: Yes.] ... Via IP, which also cites an example of Pelosi's subtle armtwisting

Baltimore Sun's Hay Brown reports the speaker-in-waiting is playing hardball: She summoned Rep.-elect Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) to her office to ask why Gillibrand was supporting current Dem whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD), and, completely coincidentally, asked for Gillibrand's committee preferences

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Update: But it's really great crap! According to TPMMuckraker Murtha's allies are saying he was 'misconstrued' and 'taken out of context.' ... More: On Hardball, Murtha had two strategies on "crap." The first was to try to claim it was the corruption that was "crap." When that didn't fly, he said only meant the bill was "crap" in relation to the more urgent need to act on the Iraq war. Nice try! The problem is in his initial discussion of the issue, Murtha gave away why he really thinks the new ethics rules are "crap"--that they are, in Chris Matthews' words, "Mickey Mouse." Here's the transcript:

MATTHEWS:  OK, let's talk about the Congress today and I have—watching this and having worked up there, and we were old friends, we still are friends, I'll admit that, I don't mind admitting it.  Let's talk about the system today.  When a congressman—when you pass a bill on the Hill that says you can't take a lunch, a hamburger from, a steak, or a trip, whatever, do you think that makes the Congress cleaner?

MURTHA:  Let me tell you.  There's a lot of crap going on in Congress all the time.  Guys violate the law, some do.  But the problem we have is a few people violate the law and then the whole Congress has to be changed.

MATTHEWS:  Okay.  Is it Mickey Mouse, or, as you said, apparently at this meeting with the Blue Dogs the other night, total crap to tell people you can't take a lunch from somebody?  Where do you draw—where is your position on ethics right now?

MURTHA:  Let me tell you, I agree that we have to return a perception of honesty to the Congress.  I agree with what Nancy's trying to do.  The crap I'm talking about is the crap that people have violated the law, the crap that the kind of things that have happened with Abramoff, the kind of things that have happened with some of the members—

MATTHEWS:  But that's not what you said.  Didn't you say it was total crap, what she was proposing?

MURTHA:  What I said was, it's total crap, the idea we have to deal with an issue like this, when—and it is total crap that we have to deal with an issue like this when we've got a war going on and we got all these other issues -- $8 billion a month we're spending— [Emphasis added]

The most likely interpretation--that Murtha thinks the new ethics rules are 'Mickey Mouse'--is still fairly damning. Murtha's obviously comfortable with the system as it now runs, as long as his Hill colleagues stay barely on the right side of the legal line. I'd thought the Democrats' point is the system as it now runs--even as it legally now runs--is corrupt. ... P.P.S.:   Mad-for-Murtha HuffPo  isn't exactly all over this story, though if you drill down long enough you'll get to the damage-controlling Hardball interview. ... 

P.P.P.S.--Conversations with the NYT Search Engine: 

  • Your search for Murtha crap in all fields returned 0 results.Did You Intend to Search for Martha crap ?

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