Clintonites bug Lady Di? A possible 'why.'

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Dec. 12 2006 3:45 AM

Clintonites Bug Di? Take II

kausfiles finds the dots. You connect them!

(Continued from Page 11)

Burkle and Clinton spend hours flying together onboard Burkle's Boeing 757. ... [snip] ... Burkle figures he accompanies Clinton at least half the time Clinton travels abroad.

"He's invaluable," Burkle says of his idol. President Clinton "is unique, he brands us to people who matter. He got us in with the Teamsters, and that's important for deal flow going forward."

Yucaipa arranged for Clinton to make a speech at a Teamsters conference in 2003, and later Clinton urged Teamsters President James Hoffa Jr. to trust Burkle and present him with possible deals. Result: This spring Yucaipa paid $100 million to buy a controlling stake in Allied Holdings, a trucking outfit in bankruptcy proceedings. "Clinton got it to the point where Hoffa actually helped us with that deal, something I couldn't have gotten on my own," Burkle says. [E.A.]

So Hoffa helps Clinton with a deal that makes Clinton and Burkle money. And if Hoffa needs something in a few years from President Hillary Clinton's White House ... 12:04 P.M.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Help Nancy! David Corn outlines Speaker-elect Pelosi's self-made dilemma when it comes to choosing the chairman of the House Intelligence committee. She doesn't want to pick the ranking Democrat, Jane Harman, for reasons the LAT attempts to divine here. Instead, she's led the Congressional Black Caucus to believe she'll instead choose Alcee Hastings, the next-ranking member. But Hastings was impeached and removed from the federal bench for corruption in the 1980s. The Democrats' more conservative "blue dog" faction has written a letter in support of Harman. The CBC has reaffirmed its support  for Hastings. What to do? 

Corn looks at the evidence and concludes "Hastings past will hobble him as a spokesman for the Democrats on national security." He suggests that Pelosi skip over Harman, and Hastings, and fallback candidate Silvestre Reyes, and instead choose Rush Holt, a liberal Dem from Princeton who worked as a State Department intelligence analyst and hasn't been shy about challenging President Bush.  But how does Holt solve Pelosi's political problem? The black caucus will still be furious, and the Blue Dogs won't be too happy either.

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Amy Holmes, appearing Tuesday on Hannity and Colmes, came up with a more ingenious solution: Pelosi could reach out and give the job to Rep. Sanford Bishop. Why Bishop? Because CBC's original beef with Harman, according to the LAT, is that when Harman returned to Congress in 2001, after a failed run for governor, she was awarded all the seniority she'd acquired from an earlier stint in the House. As a result, she vaulted over Hastings and bumped another black Congressman off the intelligence committee. The name of the bumped black Congressman: Sanford Bishop. Pelosi would be correcting an old injustice. Bonus factor: Bishop's a Blue Dog!

In short: Choose Bishop, and CBC is happy and the Blue Dogs are happy. And Pelosi is happy (because she's screwed Harman). Harman's not happy, but she must have known she might not be named chairman under Pelosi--anyway, she'll survive. The Latino caucus could be disappointed that Reyes didn't get the job, but Reyes had much less of an expectation of getting it than either Harman or Hastings.

Maybe Bishop has some disqualifying characteristic, though I haven't found one in a quick Web search. He might have to give up his seat on the (powerful) Appropriations Committee, but he's only a low-ranking member there. I can't find any House rule that would stop him from making the shift.

If there's a fatal defect with Holmes' Bishop solution, let me know. If not--why not?

Update: Time'sTimothy Burger  mentioned a possible Bishop gambit yesterday also. ..  

More: Tom Maguire emails to note that judging from his voting record Bishop "looks to be an awfully Blue Blue Dog (which means he is kinda of Red)." Bishop voted to authorize the Iraq War, for example, and  in favor of the Military Commissions Act. But he sided with most Democrats in opposing the warrantless wiretapping bill.  Still, Maguire argues Bishop's record is "a heavy load" if Pelosi's "goal is to replace Harman with a Bush-basher."

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