Alert reader R.H. suggests Rahm Emanuel as a compromise Majority Leader if Murtha is too tainted and Hoyer's relations with Pelosi are too strained. ...P.S.: Then Arianna will be happy and The Note will be happy! ... 9:02 P.M.
They sneered when kf suggested that press-fave Rep. Henry Waxman, who voted for the war, might have a problem investigating topics like the administration's pre-war manipulation of intelligence. Comes now Matthew Yglesias, writing about Jane Harman, to suggest that:
[Li]ike all people who voted for the Iraq War, she has a problem investigating the administration's pre-war manipulation of intelligence.
If Harman loses her chair because she supported the war, shouldn't Waxman lose his? 8:00 P.M. link
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.
"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
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: