Friday, June 30, 2006

"Meet the Press"

On Sunday, "Meet the Press" will begin with Republican Senate Whip Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chair and Judiciary Committee member Chuck Schumer of New York.

Topics include immigration, flag burning and the recent White House smackdown by the Supreme Court.

Later in the program, Russert will be joined by Bill Bennett, gambling addict and moral pundit for the GOP, John Harwood, Wall Street Journal columnist and chief Washington correspondent for CNBC, Dana Priest of the Washington Post and William Safire of New York Times.

Folks, do you think Timmie will play a tape of George Allen blabbing on and on about Jim Webb's stance on flag burning in light of the Republican Whip's opposition and Senate vote against the amendment?!?

And how about a little chat with Harwood on why he thinks the Wall Street Journal escaped Bush and Cheney's vitriol in the banking records story.

We can only hope...

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Silver Lining in Tom DeLay Cloud

The audacity of former Congressman Tom DeLay knows no limits.

Spinning yesterday’s Supreme Court decision to partially uphold his redistricting ploy in Texas, DeLay said it was all about the constitution, the Washington Post reports.

"This is a victory for the Constitution and a victory for the people of Texas," DeLay said in an interview. "It shows if you follow the Constitution and the state legislatures do their job as dictated by the Constitution, you'll have the right political representation in the Congress."
Howling Latina was one of many volunteers who tried to defeat Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar of the 23rd District in Texas during this year's primary; and the Supreme Court decision could lead to Cuellar’s ouster in the next election cycle. But more importantly, the ruling could also lead to one or more pickups in Texas during the mid-term House elections.

“The justices ruled that the redrawing of Texas Rep. Henry Bonilla's 23rd District strengthened the Republican's grasp on his seat by diluting Latino voters' power and violating the Voting Rights Act. Remedying that infraction will affect at least three districts and, possibly, many others, said Nina Perales, the Southwestern counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, which argued the case.”


A three-judge panel in Texas will have to decide in the coming weeks how to redraw those lines, and "there's no way you can do a little fixing of Bonilla's district without creating big ripple effects," said Richard Gladden, a Denton, Tex., lawyer involved in the case. "There's not a chance" DeLay's map will remain intact.

Indeed; and remember the Democrats only need a net pick up of 15 seats in the fall.

Now that the High Court has ruled states can redistrict for partisan purposes, as long as they do not violate the Voting Rights Act (as Texas did), HL predicts the House to flip to Democrats for a very long, long time.

The Democratic Party, by virtue of demographics in urban cities, has a sheer majority in many states with high-ranking GOPers like Speaker of the House Dennis Hastern of Illinois in grave danger.

Democratic Congressional Campaign Chairman Rahm Emanuel of Illinois is quoted as saying:

"Every redistricting is a partisan political exercise, but this is going to put it at a level we have never seen...That's the gift that the Supreme Court and Tom DeLay have given us."

But arrogant and dissembling as always, DeLay whirls and twists the truth about his political downfall as the price for gerrymandering:
"It's always worth it to stand up for the Constitution," DeLay said.

Update: The Fix of the Washington Post notes that former Rep. Ciro Rodriguez has "new life" after his disappointing defeat in the primary to Cuellar.
Assuming the courts remove Webb County out of Cuellar's 28th district and consolidate the seat around San Antonio (as it was prior to the re-redistricting) Rodriguez would be the odds-one nominee in the new seat.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Felix The Lying Cat

Sen. George Felix Allen fired a press release denouncing James Webb for saying he did not believe our constitutional liberties should be trampled with an election-year gimmick to amend the constitution.

Actually what Webb said was that he would not have voted for the amendment; and that, according to Allen, is tantamount to flip-flopping, which absolutely proves...gasp, Webb is a raging liberal.

Okay, racist, lying Felix.

Guess Sens. Robert F. Bennett of Utah and Mitch McConnell of Kentucky are raging liberals as well.

Now, Google sent Howling Latina a link to Q and O blog story under the guise of Webb news. HL fired back an e-mail asking why they were sending me blatant GOP talking points.

If anyone has the e-mail address to the idiot who approves forwarding links as news, please leave a post.

No Star Treatment for Star Jones

It's bad enough that African-American women are absent from prime-time television; but now it looks like they're getting booted off daytime shows as well.

Star Jones yesterday announced that she would not be coming back to "The View" in the fall; and immediately Barbara Walters, the show creator, was quoted saying she felt "betrayed."

You see, Star had the audacity to tell viewers she was leaving because producers decided to go in another direction; and then in an interview with People magazine, she unwittingly confirmed she'd gotten the ax.

Apparently, Star was supposed to make her announcement later in the week and come up with some lame excuse (anything but the ugly truth) and everyone on the show was going to back her up, shed their crocodile tears and move on.

Well, guess what, Barbara?

Maybe Star didn't want any phony sent-offs by the gang who likely stabbed her in the back. And please don't try to claim you were doing all you could behind the scenes to try to help poor Star.

Walters was quoted saying yesterday.

"I love Star and I was trying to do everything I possibly could - up until this morning when I was betrayed - to protect her.

"I would have loved for Star to have left and not said 'I was fired,' and not make it look like the program was somehow being cruel to her."

Hmmm, how do you think Star felt after giving nine years to the show and then being unceremoniously dumped?!?

Howling Latina is quite sure that if Walters had pitched a bitch the show would've likely reconsidered. But you see, "research showed audience members were turned off by Reynolds' dramatic weight loss."

Now, have you ever heard anything so frigging feeble?

Oh yes, the longer Star stayed, according to Walters, the more the audiences hated her. But had she stayed her fat loving self, it might have all worked out.

Well, not only did Star choose to make her public announcement without letting the show off the hook, but in an interview, she spilled the beans: "What you don't know is that my contract was not renewed for the tenth season," she tells PEOPLE. "I feel like I was fired."

And yes, the reason Star feels as if she'd been fired is 'cause she was.

"The View," as the chummy hour where bestest of friends get together for a gabfest has been exposed as nothing more than cut-throat television masquerading as "feel good" reality.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Fox News Ratings Continue to Slide

TV Newster reports that Fox News continues to slide both during prime time and total day.

And just who has benefited from the Fox News ratings sag?

Why MSNBC, with Keith Olbermann's "Countdown" leading the way during prime time.


Q2 '06: 289 178 134 107 78
Q2 '05: 378 217 118 114 64
% change: -24% -18% +14% -6% +22%

MSNBC beat CNN at 8pm in the second quarter of 2006, as well, according to numbers out today. Olbermann averaged 156,000 demo viewers, narrowly beating Zahn's 153,000. MSNBC was up 32 percent from the same quarter last year, while CNN was down 20 percent. Bill O'Reilly averaged 401,000 demo viewers in the quarter, down from 450,000 last quarter and down 14 percent from the same quarter last year.
One bit of news for folks who like to see pundits squirm. Chris Matthews is going to be on "The Steve Colbert Report" tonight.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Recap Quotes about Webb & Senate Race

Larry Sabato, political guru:

"On paper, this is a real race, for logical reasons," said Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the University of Virginia. "I look at a variety of polls, and they tell me that voters are rendering a judgment on George Allen. Voters really don't know Jim Webb yet."
Joe Klein, political columnist of Time and MSNBC and Chris Matthews, "Hardball" host:

Mr. KLEIN: The two Senate races I'm most looking forward to in the fall are in Virginia, where Jim Webb, former Republican, pugilist tough guy, is taking on George Allen. I really want to watch that debate. But the one I'm really
interested in...

MATTHEWS: I want to moderate it.
Col. Steve Flaherty, state police commissioner on Allen's political flyer with the senator and six Virginia state troopers.

"Our people are usually around when significant events go on and they like to have their pictures taken with leadership. Unfortunately, sometimes they (the pictures) get used in that fashion," Flaherty said in an interview.

"We don't endorse candidates and we try very hard to walk a fine line," he said.
Oh, and what would a list of quotes be without a little swiftboating by nervous Allen GOP hacks.

So here's a quote from David Holman of American Spectator about Jim Webb's problem; and yep, it's a retread smear from the 2000 Bush campaign about John McCain.

[T]he description that best fits Webb is of one who found that when the going gets tough, one sulks, throws a tantrum, whines to the press and quits.


A hair trigger temper [with] difficulty keeping in check.
Well, here's a little analysis from Howling Latina.

When you have a war hero as a political opponent and can't besmirch his service to country; or a former U.S. Naval Academy lecturer and can't disparage his intellect; guess you go for the jugular and attack the only thing left to you, his mental state.

Hmmm, judging from Webb's early opposition to the Iraq quagmire, HL would say Webb's mental state is sound as a whistle.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Coerced False Confession

In a Texas courtroom 17 years ago, Christopher Ochoa described in blood-curling detail with intimate accuracy how he and a roommate repeatedly raped a 20-year-old woman; except none of it was true.

In October 1998, Nancy DePriest had been working at a North Austin Pizza Hut when she was bound, raped and then shot in the head with a .22-caliber revolver.

Ochoa and his roommate came under suspicion while drinking beer at the same Pizza Hut two weeks after the murder; and after nonstop interrogation by the lead Austin investigator, Hector Polanco, Ochoa confessed to the crime.

Now why would an innocent man confess to a grisly murder he was not involved in?

In the case of Ochoa, booming fear of Texas justice.

According to an article by Texas Monthly, Austin police detectives told Ochoa that if he didn't confess he would wind up on death row.

Ochoa, a former high school honors student who had no criminal record, said he confessed because over the course of two long interrogations, Polanco and the other detectives hollered at him, threatened him with rape by other inmates, and told him he would get "the needle" if he didn't confess to DePriest's murder.

When Ochoa was sufficiently terrified, the detective began asking him leading questions, feeding him details. "He was all the time telling me what to say," said Ochoa. For example, he said, "Polanco would say, 'Did he [Danziger] say how good-looking she was?' or something. And I would say, 'Yeah.'" All the while Boardman typed his answers, which eventually sent two innocent men to the pen, and one to oblivion.

Through dogged determination by a group of second and third year law students at the University of Wisconsin Law School, officials tested DNA from the crime scene; and the DNA evidence exonerated both Ochoa and Danziger.

For the city's gross act of injustice, Ochoa was awarded $5.3 million.

Just a few weeks ago, Ochoa graduated from the same law program that had earlier saved him from a life of confinement behind bars.

Richard Danziger, Ochoa's former roommate, has had a more difficult time of it.

The hapless friend whom Ochoa wrongfully fingered as the trigger man now lives with his sister in Jacksonville, Fla., and he suffers seizures and loss of peripheral vision.

In 1991, Danziger was brutally beaten by an inmate and suffered permanent brain damage.

For his pain and anguish, the city of Austin agreed to pay him $9 million. Travis County also reached a settlement with him for $950,000.

Last year, Danziger sued the state of Texas on behalf of Ochoa for $500,000; this is part of a settlement reached when Danziger sued Ochoa for falsely testifying against him.

In Texas alone, 20 prisoners as of January 2006 have been exonerated through DNA for murder and/or rape.

In Virginia, a jury recently awarded $2.25 million to Earl Washington Jr., a mentally handicapped former farm hand who was browbeaten until he confessed to killing Rebecca Lynn Williams, a 19-year old mother of three who has been stabbed 33 times.

Washington sat on death row for nine terrifying years and came within days of being executed by the commonwealth.

As the Los Angeles Times recently wrote, 180 prisoners have been "exonerated by DNA testing in the last two decades." Forty-four "falsely confessed."

False confessions "do happen, a lot more often than people think," Ochoa said.
Who can appreciate the import of these words better than Ochoa?

Saturday, June 24, 2006

“Meet the Press”

In must see TV, Democratic presidential hopeful and a favorite of many, Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin will be the leading guest on “Meet the Press” this Sunday.

Feingold, a Democrat who voted against the war in Iraq and the conscience of our party and nation, will try to explain to his national audience why the United States should withdraw from Iraq, sooner rather than later.

In the second segment, Tim Russert will be joined by David Broder of the Washington Post, Ron Brownstein of the Los Angeles Times, David Gregory, Chief White House Correspondent of NBC News and Annie Kornblut of the New York Times.

The media gurus will pontificate on how Iraq might shape the potential presidential candidacy of Sens. Hillary Clinton and John Kerry in '08.

The roundtable will also discuss GOP's favorite Democratic senator, Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, and why he's in deep stew with the party faithful over his views in Iraq.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Are We Laughing Yet...?

After the latest Wall Street/Zogby poll showed George Felix Allen ahead of Jim Webb by 5.3 percent, looks like Allen's campaign strategy is to attack the pollster.

Hey, when you're going down, you'll try anything...

The Daily Press reports that "Allen campaign manager Dick Wadhams...called the Zogby poll "a joke.''

Yep, according to Wadhams "Zogby has been 'discredited'' and...the Wall Street Journal should be 'embarrassed' for printing the poll.

A joke and an embarrassment; are we having a vexing belly laugh yet?!?

John Zogby says Allen campaign attacks on the result of the latest Wall Street Journal/Zogby Interactive poll are "over the top.''
Mr. Zogby then went on to say, ""Attack dogs don't attack unless they are scared.''

Shitless out of their $1500 cowboy boots, Howling Latina might add.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Can Andrea Yates Get a Fair Trial?

Andrea Yates is a mentally ill woman in Texas who was found guilty of killing her children and sentenced to life in prison without parole.

Now, never mind that her husband and mental professionals testified that Andrea suffered deep bouts of post-partum depression and delusion.

In Texas, the bar is set so high that multi-personalities, hearing voices and a bout of psychosis doesn’t mean squat.

If you kill someone, as Andrea did, because you think you're such a terrible sinful mother that your kids are better off with God than with you; and right after murdering them you call the police to surrender so you can be punished, the law says your deeds prove you knew what you were doing was wrong; and then deems you sane enough for trial, punishment and even the ultimate penalty, death.

But thankfully for Andrea, the prosecution introduced faulty evidence during her last trial; and the verdict was overturned by an appeals court.

Dr. Park Dietz, who served as the state's mental health expert during the first trial four years ago, told the jury that an episode of the NBC drama Law & Order - which depicted a mother being acquitted by reason of insanity after drowning her children in a bathtub - had aired shortly before Yates killed her five children on June 20, 2001. Prosecutors said that Yates was an avid viewer of the program.

After Yates was convicted, but before she was sentenced to life in prison, attorneys and the jury learned that no such episode of Law & Order existed.

Now ain't that nice?!?

Well, thank the sweet Lord a death sentence is not an option this time around.

It also seems with all the publicity, the courts are having a tough time finding a jury panel that is not already familiar with the case.

In fact, one-fourth of the panelists admitted to the courts that they'd already "reached a conclusion on Yates' guilt or innocence based on pre-trial publicity," the Houston Chronicle reports.

It hardly seems civilized to avenge the crazed deeds of a hapless psychotic mother who suffered from postpartum depression; and several threads in the story are encouraging.

For instance, the Chronicle writes that several jury panel members argued against the legal definition in Texas case law as it relates to the insanity defense plea.

"What if you totally disagree with that concept?'' one panelist asked.

Seventeen panelists flat out told the judge that any mother who killed her children was prima facie evidence she was legally insane.

And what’s more, the judge was heard reassuring would-be jurors not to worry about the death penalty:

"From the questionnaires, we know that some of you have concerns about the death penalty. Let me tell you from the outset, the death penalty is not an option in this case,'' Hill told the crowd

Howling Latina is forever grateful that Andrea Yates was spared her life during the first trial; and now hopes during the second trial that a jury concludes Andrea needs help, not punishment.

She certainly did not choose her illness, anymore than one chooses cancer or skin color; and has absolutely no control over her mental state.

A just society has the moral duty to care for all its citizens; and mental care for someone with mental illness is a core public responsibility.


The blogosphere has been abuzz because two national Republican lawmakers claimed during a press conference that weapons of mass destruction had been found in Iraq.

Well, not so fast, Forked-Tongue senator and congressman. Apparently, Alan Colmes of Fox News had to break it down to Rickie Man-on-dog Santurum and Petie Hoekstra.

The two "amigos" were on Hannity and Colmes to "hyp[e] a document that describes degraded, pre-1991 munitions that were already acknowledged by the White House’s Iraq Survey Group and dismissed."


These guys are not the sharpest tool in the shed and must think everyone else is equally as stupid. There they were on national television when Colmes busted them for the whole world to see.

Think Progress reports:

Fox News’ Jim Angle contacted the Defense Department who quickly disavowed Santorum and Hoekstra’s claims. A Defense Department official told Angle flatly that the munitions hyped by Santorum and Hoekstra are “not the WMD’s for which this country went to war.”
And of course, Colmes politely pounced on the clueless lawmakers.
Congressman, Senator, it’s Alan Colmes. Senator, the Iraq Survey Group — let me go to the Duelfer Report — says that Iraq did not have the weapons our intelligence believed were there. And Jim Angle reported this for Fox News quotes a defense official who says these were pre-1991 weapons that could not have been fired as designed because they already been degraded. And the official went on to say these are not the WMD’s this country and the rest of the world
believed Iraq had and not the WMD’s for which this country went to war. So the chest beating at this Republicans are doing tonight thinking this is a justification is not confirmed by the defense department.
Damn, lost another one to Die-Truth! Only Rickie and Petie ain't the ones doing the dying for lies, of course.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Evening Chuckle (Or morning....)

A late evening chuckle or early morning belly laugh.

George Bush goes to a primary school to talk to the kids to get a little P/R. After his talk he offers question time.

One little boy puts up his hand and George asks him his name. "Stanley," responds the little boy.

"And what is your question, Stanley?"

"I have 4 questions: First, why did the USA invade Iraq without the support of the UN? Second, why are you President when Al Gore got more votes? Third, whatever happened to Osama Bin Laden? Fourth, why are we so worried about gay marriage when 1/2 of all Americans don't have health insurance?"

Just then, the bell rings for recess. George Bush informs the kiddies that they will continue after recess.

When they resume George says, "OK, where were we? Oh, that's right: question time. Who has a question?"

Another little boy puts up his hand. George points him out and asks him his name.

"Steve," he responds.

"And what is your question, Steve?"

"Actually, I have 6 questions. First, why did the USA invade Iraq without the support of the UN?

"Second, why are you President when Al Gore got more votes?

"Third, whatever happened to Osama Bin Laden?

"Fourth, why are we so worried about gay marriage when 1/2 of all Americans don't have health insurance?

"Fifth, why did the recess bell go off 20 minutes early?

"And sixth, what the hell happened to Stanley?"

Democratic Verbal Smackdowns

Over at Crawfordslist is a grrrreat inventory of verbal smackdowns by Democrats in response to the over-used “cut and run” Republican refrain.

My absolute favorite smackdown is Joe Conason’s, “Fear and smear,” although “Stay the curse” from madmustard in the comment section ain’t too shabby.

Jack Murtha: "Stay and Pay."

And from yet another reader in the comment segment, “Drag…and Destroy.”

Howling Latina offers the dusty slogan of yesteryears to the list; old, but ever more appropriate to the current situation in Iraq, “Lie and Die.”

Update: Think Progress has a post on Sen. Chuck Hagel's verbal smackdown of his party's usage of "focus group-tested buzz words…like ‘Cut and Run." According to Hagel, the "catchy political slogans" are used to "avoid having a serious debate about Bush’s Iraq policy."

GOP House Revolts

In a news alert, Buzzflash notifies readers that the House Judiciary Committee "passed a resolution calling on the Bush Administration to disclose its role in the NSA’s telephone monitoring program."

Oh, oh! It sure looks like the natives are getting restless; and ain't gonna take it no more.

Several Republican congressmen joined Democrats in approving the resolution in a voice vote today. Chairman James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) even challenged Bush by threatening to put the measure up before the full House if the Administration does not comply.
Like Buzzflash notes, Republicans are getting sick and tired of Bush trashing the constitution.

Only yesterday, 23 Republicans "broke ranks" with their leadership and "support[ed] an amendment that would prohibit electronic surveillance without a warrant."

Dishonest George

Ever since public office was just a twinkle in Sen. George Felix Allen's eye, "law and order" has been one of his core campaign pledges.

Take no prisoners in the war against crime, terrorism, whatever. The rule of law is sacrosanct.

Now thanks to Truthout, we learn Allen truly doesn't believe his own talking points.

When some folks swindle the government, say corporate fat cats like Halliburton, move along, we've got the perpetual war in Iraq to run.

Last week, Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-ND, introduced the "Honest Leadership and Accountability" amendment; and every GOP senator voted against the measure, including our "tough on crime" junior senator from Virginia.

Here is a list of corporate malfeasance the bill would outlaw.

"Executes or attempts to execute a scheme or artifice to defraud the United States or the entity having jurisdiction over the area in which such activities occur."

"Falsifies, conceals, or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact."

"Makes any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements or representations, or makes or uses any materially false writing or document knowing the same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statement or entry."

"Materially overvalues any good or service with the specific intent to excessively profit from the war or military action."

The measure called for those found guilty of violating the law to be imprisoned for up to 20 years and be subject to a fine of up to $1,000,000 - a drop in the bucket for these guys - or a percentage of
their ill-gotten gains.

But now, it's grab all the $$$$ you can forever.

As Howling Latina previously wrote, Allen is extremely selective with his moral outrage. Let's see a little anger directed at war profiteers and the crooks at Halliburton that cost Virginia taxpayers billions of dollars!

Osama binLaden Hearts Bush

In a stunning revelation, Ron Suskind, award winning journalist and author of "One Percent Solution," told Wolf Blitzer in an interview at "The Situation Room" that CIA analysts concluded bin Laden was very happy Bush II was re-elected in 2004.

Only days before the election, a bin Laden tape surfaced that stopped the Kerry momentum from Bush's ruinous performances during the debates dead on its track.

Perhaps its release date was not accidental.

Readers can see the video of the Suskind interview at Crooks and Liars.

"What the CIA had learned over nearly a decade is that bin Laden speaks only for strategic reasons and those reasons are debated with often startling depths inside the organization's leadership. Today's conclusion: bin Laden's message was clearly designed to assist the president's re-election."


The question, the key question, is what it is it about America's war on terror that is such that bin Laden would want it to continue and Bush to continue conducting it?

You see, boys and girls, it's really not that difficult. Osama loyalists attack America. America reacts and attacks Afghanistan; and then over-reaches and attacks Iraq.

Now, caught in a perpetual quagmire, the United States has already spent more than $300 billion with no end in sight; and more than 2500 soldiers have also been killed.

Not too shabby; couldn't have panned out any better for a man whose core aim was to extract maximum amount of pain and suffering from his enemy.

America, you've duped and conned by the neocons. The question is, are you going to stay the course set by bin Laden machinations; or are you going to change course to policies that make sense for America?!?

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Who The Hell is Greg Neft?!?

Oh, oh. It looks like Jo Ann Davis is going to be challenged from the right flank as well as the left.
WAVA (Channel 10) of Portsmouth-Norfolk reports that a retired Marine has decided to run for Congress in the 1st district.

And yes, that's the same district Shaun Kenney informed Howling Latina a few hours ago where Jo Ann Davis is a rock star!

Well, her star must be fading or the former real estate lady desperately needs a new hit.

Retired Marine Colonel Marvin Pixton says he doesn't like the current state of politics, and says there's too much bickering between the two parties. He says he's not running against the incumbent but rather he's running for a change in Washington.
Transportation is supposed to be his shtick. But once a Marine always a Marine Simper Fi; and you can bet more that a few of his fellow jarheads will opt to vote for him rather than Davis.

This district is getting more interesting by the minute!

No Place For Snark

Spank the Donkey had a snarky post about the Iraq War, making light of the endless horror that has become Bush's perpetual war in the Middle East.

It's clear from his writing that he obviously didn't read the heart-wrenching story in this Sunday's Washington Post.

Two American soldiers died in Iraq; and all because the United States government failed to provide them with rudimentary life-saving provisions.

In a brilliant story, April Witt recounts how a brave young officer died on the battlefield because the military didn't provide his unit with a $20 tourniquet; and this, after spending $400,000 of taxpayer's money to educate the former valedictorian at West Point.

She writes: "He graduated fifth in his class at West Point. He was so fit and gung-ho about physical training that his men affectionately called him Super Dave behind his back. Everyone liked Super Dave. He was known for listening to the concerns of his men and trying to help."

But 1st Lt. David Bernstein died in the Iraqi desert at the age of 24, not for lack of training or will, but for lack of regard by the people he trusted.

For want of a nail the shoe was lost.

For want of a shoe the horse was lost.

For want of a horse the rider was lost

For want of a rider the battle was lost.

For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.

And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.

Witt also chronicles the story of a young private; and his father's journey to honor the son's death by ringing the alarm that GI's were dying in Iraq, NEEDLESSLY!

Private 1st Class John Hart was sent on a mission with Bernstein and twelve other men without "essential equipment" that could've saved the servicemen's lives.

The grieving father was once a staunch Republican from a long line of fundamentalist Christians; but little by little the father came to realize that GOPers were great with a jingle but callously inept.

Witt writes about the lead-up to war:

Gen. Richard Myers, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld faced their legislative overseer, the Senate Armed Services Committee. An invasion of Iraq seemed imminent. Tensions with North Korea were mounting.

Sen. Warner asked Myers the obvious question: Was the military prepared? "So, I start with you, General," Warner said. "The armed forces, which are under your super-vision: Is it your professional judgment that they are prepared to meet any contingency for the use of force as may be required in Iraq . . . and to continue the high level of activity against the worldwide terrorism?"

Myers responded: "I'll give you a real short answer: absolutely."


Gen. Eric K. Shinseki, then Army chief of staff, wrote to Congress a few weeks later, saying that the administration budget left the Army alone $3.2 billion short of what the service needed for "sustainment of war-fighting readiness." Shinseki's wish list of unfunded requests included items as basic as guns, bullets and armor.

And we all know what happened to Shinseki?!? Yet dear ol' Karl outed a CIA operative and he gets to keep his daytime job!

Moreover, each time some Chickenhawk projects his own weakness into a political opponent, DENIAL. And as they jam ruinous legislation and policies down the throats of a minority party and nation, the problems remain unsolved .

Let's take the case of Karl Rove. In a recent speech, Rove projected his inner cowardliness into a true military war hero; and in the meantime, the carnage continues in Iraq as the White House sharpens their talking points.

Thank God for Rep. John Murtha; he gave Rove the verbal smackdown he deserved so long, long ago.

Oh please dear Lord, let the Republicans try to smear the Democrats this election cycle; gonna be kinna hard, though, with all those fighting Democrats on the ballots.

Every Republican deserves to go down to defeat in November. Every last one of them! We can't do anything about Bush, but we sure as hell can kick his Chickenhawk toadies out of Congress.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Why The Knock Rule Matters

The United States Supreme Court recently ruled that police did not have to wait before barging in a house if they had a search warrant.

Yikes has an excellent post with stories of why this ruling was an exceptionally bad one; and just how many things can go wrong when the police have unfettered power to raid someone's private home.

Bush Doesn't Care About Illegals

The message from the White House is that employers can hire illegal immigrants without paying any penalty.

The Washington Post reports today that since the Bush administration took office, enforcement has dropped by a whopping and mind-boggling 95 percent.

The number of employers prosecuted for unlawfully employing immigrants dropped from 182 in 1999 to four in 2003, and fines collected declined from $3.6 million to $212,000, according to federal statistics.

A measly four employers!

Oh read it and weep, Sen. George Felix Allen! And after you're done crying your crocodile tears, please tell Virginias why you've failed to rally your "law and order" troops against such egregious lack of oversight by the White House.

Breaking Plamegate News

President Bush told reporters on Air Force One that Fitzgerald has closed shop, according to Citizenspook.

The Houston Chronicle had a story yesterday about Bush's comments on Air Force One.

"It's a chapter that has ended," Bush told reporters Wednesday. Later the same day, Bush made clear that he had no interest in returning to the matter.

"I've made the comments I'm going to make about this incident, and I'm going to put this part of the situation behind us and move forward," Bush said.

Does that mean the investigation is over? Did Bush shut it down? And why won't Fitzgerald's office confirm ANYTHING!?!?

Democratic Underground has the following quote: "On Air Force One flying back from a surprise trip to Iraq, Bush said of the decision: "It's a chapter that has ended. Fitzgerald is a very thorough person. I think he's conducted his investigation in a dignified way. And he's ended his investigation."

The Houston Chronicle left out the very important tail end of Bush's quote and instead used another quote to convey closure.
"I appreciate the job that the prosecutor did. I thought he conducted himself well in this investigation," Bush said. "He took a very thorough, long look at allegations and rumors. And I, obviously, along with others in the White House, took a sigh of relief when he made the decision he made. And now we're going to move forward."
The Plamegate imbroglio gets curious and couriousier.

Is Rove Off The Hook?

During the last week or so, mainstream media reported that Karl Rove will not be indicted.

To much fanfare, Rove's attorneys told the press that Fitzgerald had notified their office he would not be seeking an indictment against Rove; and they also shared a letter that said, "On June 12, 2006, Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald formally advised us that he does not anticipate seeking charges against Karl Rove."

As many bloggers have noted, anticipating is not definitive; and Fitzgerald's office has refused to confirm or comment on the matter.

The folks at firedoglake and others believe Rove is cooperating with Fitzgerald and the careful use of "anticipation" in the letter probably means an indictment could still loom ahead if Rove refuses to live up to his agreement to testify.

But other folks ain't buying it. Truthout via TPM Muckraker is standing by their original story. Only a week ago, Leopold wrote another breaking news story that a sealed indictment in District Court, "Sealed vs. Sealed," has Karl Rove's name on it.

An entry in Judge Reggie Walton who is hearing the Libby case was added to the docket on May 12. It remains unsealed, which points to a major league, well-publicized case.

Now, if Jason Leopold's story is bunk, why is Truthout continuing to stand by their original story? Could Leopold's scoop be accurate and Rove's attorney also be telling the truth?

One scenario sketched out by citizenspook explains how both could be telling the truth: "a runaway Grand Jury [could] have returned charges without Fitzgerald having sought them or signed them -- allow[ing] all of the parties to be telling the truth."

Without going into every nook and cranny detail, which Howling Latina would probably screw-up, read for yourselves. Riveting stuff for Plamegate buffs.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Three Major Newspapers Support Kaine's Decision

A little over one week ago, Gov. Tim Kaine granted a temporary stay of execution with barely an hour before Percy Levar Walton was scheduled to be executed on June 8.

Within days of Kaine's decision, three major newspapers weighed in.

Editorials in The Washington Post, The Virginian-Pilot and The Roanoke Times unanimously supported Kaine's decision.

Walton not only suffers from schizophrenia but is mentally retarded as well.

Despite protests by the commonwealth attorney general, Kaine's last minute reprieve will now allow Walton’s mental state to be examined by impartial mental health professionals.

In a previous 7-6 finding by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, Walter was ruled fit to die.

The Washington Post writes, Kaine is "empowered by Virginia's constitution to review scheduled executions one by one, and he is duty-bound to take that responsibility seriously."

Virginia governors have granted clemency in seven cases since the Supreme Court reinstituted the death penalty in 1976. Mr. Kaine is right, and courageous, to order a full review before passing a final judgment on Mr. Walton.
The Virginian-Pilot admonishes, "Virginia should not be so bloodthirsty, so vengeful as to kill a man who’s obviously so mentally unsound."

The Roanoke Times observes, "Before Virginia pumps lethal chemicals into this killer's veins, the state should be sure Walton understands exactly what will happen to him and why the commonwealth exacts the ultimate retribution. The U.S. Supreme Court requires -- and a just society demands -- this level of mental competency."

And that is the heart of the matter. You don't execute an individual who suffers from mental illness with an IQ of 66.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Another GOPer Converts To Webb

Read it and weep, GOP wingnuts.

Another Republican has switched his allegiance.

The Free Lance-Star published an op-ed today from a male reader who lives in Sumerduck in Fauquier County. That's crimson red country, for folks who don't know.

And the reader shares with the audience that he has only twice voted for a Democrat: John Kennedy and Jimmy Carter.

He took the time from his schedule to trek to the voting booth and vote for Jim Webb in the Democratic primary on Tuesday; and what's more, he's voting for Webb in the fall.

Oh yea; listen to his reasons:

I can no longer support Sen. Allen, as I am convinced that he has abandoned middle-class Americans.

I believe Sen. Allen and his colleagues haven't lost touch with us--they just don't care.

I am convinced that they will never put the needs of the people they represent before their own self-interest.

It is time for a change, and I'm voting for James Webb in November.


It is essential that we all take action in November to take our country back from the professional politicians and get us back to the representative form of government our forefathers sacrificed to give us.

What was that garbage George Allen and his cronies were trying to spin about Webb and his elitist friends?!?

Hmmm, looks like they better dig a little deeper in their bag of dissembling. Virginians are never going to buy the "elitist" label on a war hero that wears combat boots on the campaign trail.

About The Rasmussen Poll

Today Rasmussen posted poll numbers for the Senate race in Virginia with Allen leading Webb by 10 points, 51 percent to 41 percent.

How very interesting!

Considering Howling Latina received an e-mail to complete the Rasmussen survey and only sent her reply with Jim Webb as the candidate she will vote for late last night.

In other words, the Rasmussen poll is based on a partial sample; a mere snapshot of the folks who responded immediately.

Update: An anonymous reader informed HL that the Rasmussen poll was by phone. Makes perfect sense. One poll by phone and a survey by e-mail; it's the beauty of blogs, you get answers to your queries!

House Roll Call

Here's a link to how members voted on the House resolution to support Bush's Iraq war policies.

Virginia's delegation voted as follows:

Yea - Eric Cantor, Rick Boucher, Jo Ann Davis, Tom Davis, Thelma Drake, Virgil Goode, Randy Forbes, Robert Goodlatte and Frank Wolf,

Nay - Bobby Scott and James Moran.

"Meet the Press" Lineup

Rep. John Murtha will be a guest on "Meet the Press" this Sunday. He will be talking about the problems with the Bush Iraq War strategy, his proposal for bringing the troops home, his short-lived majority leader bid and more.

Afterwards, three executives from the oil industry will join Tim Russert. John Hofmeister, president of Shell Oil Company, James Mulva, chairman and chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips Corporation and David O'Reilly, chairman and chief executive officer of Chevron Corporation.

The three top industry officials will discuss rising oil prices and what effects the war and hurricane season have on markets.

Can hardly wait to hear what the oil spinmeisters have to say on the subject.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

No Whiz Kids On The Block

First a conservative idiot says that Jim Webb's medals mean nothing in the Senate race; and to prove his point he refers to Ollie North's loss to Chuck Robb in 1994.

Now another conservative fool claims that Webb must take a stance or be labeled a flip flopper.

First of all, how can Webb be a flip flopper on issues he's never taken position on?!? Hmm, don't you first have to take a stance?!?

Oh, it must kill the wingnuts that Jim Webb is as pure as a virgin when it comes to immigration and gay marriage, their wedge issues du jour for the campaign season.

But oh, that's right, Webb switched parties; you know, like Republican hero Ronald Reagan.

Well, Whizbang Politics, you ain't no whiz.

Yes, remind your readers how Jesse Helms was able to "run against "popular NC governor Jim Hunt" and how "Jesse's strength was that you didn't always agree with him, but you always knew where he stood."

But Whiz, I saw enough of Jesse Helms to consider him no friend of mine; and HL hates to break it to you, but George Felix Allen ain't no Jesse Helms.

He's a one-term senator, former one-term governor, one-term state delegate and one-term congressman.

In other words, Allen ain't no institution in the commonwealth; and he sure as hell ain't no war hero; just a racist chickenhawk!

And finally, Jim Hunt had no national foreign policy experience, either.

That's right, loyal GOPers, keep comparing apples to oranges and watch your would-be president lose to Webb in November.

Forever Red?!?

A few months ago, rumors were rampant that Premier Fidel Castro has Parkinson’s disease.

Now the Associated Press via Forbes quotes Raul, his younger brother, saying that even if there is a "leadership change, " Cuba will remain a Communist bastion.

Raul Castro, the island's defense minister and designated successor of his 79-year-old brother, dismissed claims that Cuba's political system would change dramatically after his brother is no longer president, saying the party would quickly fill any political vacuum.

Well, Howling Latina can only state that if little brother is talking about a change at the top, heresy if Castro were well, looks like rumors started by the CIA may have been right on the $$$.

Of course, little brother ain’t no spring chicken at the age of 74, so ¿quién sabe?!?

Oh to be able to visit the home of my youth, something HL is no longer allowed to do since she does not have any immediate family living in the island nation; only first cousins and aunts.

Yep, Bush tightened the noose on visiting Cuba to the delight of the Old Guard in Miami who like Castro, thankfully is getting up in years.

Hopefully, this remnant from the Cold War, Bay of Pigs and Kennedy assassination will soon be truly history.

Is That All You've Got?!?

For the last few days Howling Latina has been pondering what exactly Sen. George Felix Allen is going to tell his constituents to counter attacks by James Webb during the upcoming Senate race.

The list of grievances against Allen are long, starting with his unconditional support for the worst policies in government in nearly a century; and climaxing with the fact that our junior senator is bored with his job as our representative in Congress.

On the road to the White House, Allen continues to travel the country roads to campaign, but for what, president or senator?

Allen seems to pop up every place where Republican presidential hopefuls gather. In the latest instance, Allen is traveling once again to Iowa this weekend.

The Virginian-Pilot reports that Allen is defending his right to appear in Iowa and anyplace else that he wants. You know, like New Hampshire; and any location where would-be presidents strut their wares for approval and cash.

Allen will be the keynote speaker at a lunch benefiting the Republican Party of Iowa and the state's Federation of Republican Women. The event will be held in the middle of a three-day convention of the Iowa GOP and will be attended by about 300 activists, according to Sara Sauber, a spokeswoman for the party.

You see, Allen needs a boatload of cash because the “meanies” on the left are going to go after his god-given Senate seat in the fall.

Allen predicts he will be targeted for defeat this fall by national Democratic organizations and says he must raise money aggressively. He had $7.6 million in his campaign treasury on May 24, according to his latest filing with the Federal Election Commission. He could use money left over from his Senate campaign to run for president.
And quite naturally, the goober senator pointed out that Webb will most assuredly travel the nation for the funds he will need to defeat him.

"Have him tell you when he goes to Hollywood and what liberal, elitist actor's mansion he'll be raising money in next," Wadhams said, referring to a three-day fundraising trip Webb made last month to Los Angeles.
Well dear senator, there is nothing wrong with a candidate asking supporters from other states to help their campaign. The problem with your reelection strategy is all those pesky visits that have little to do with raising cash and everything to do with raising your national profile with voters outside of Virginia.

And if your entire campaign design for Virginia is to use the “elitist moniker” to offset your dismal Senate record and the dismal record of your party in Congress and White House, all HL has to say to you is that you’re gonna need every penny of that $7.6 million and then some.

For if anyone is an elitist, it is your fat cat corporate sugar daddies and military elites who pull your strings at every turn. Jim Webb is the least pretentious guy voters will meet on the campaign trail.

No $1500 snakeskin cowboy boots for the former Marine; down-to-earth authenticity is his brand.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Disgraceful Comment on Crawfordlist

Looks like some clown has decided to spew some hateful venom down Virginia's way.

In a post on Craiglist, some guy/gal who posts by the name of Fritz is warning Virginia that it's going to be real hard for Jim Webb, the Democratic Senate candidate, to beat George Allen, war hero credentials notwithstanding.

You see, war metals didn't help poor Ollie North in his race against former Sen. Chuck Robb in 1994; and moreover, Allen ain't no Jew.

Now why Craig Crawford allows this idiot to post on his blog and doesn't delete this hugely offensive remark is beyond Howling Latina's comprehension.

But when thinking of North, guess the shame and disgrace of the loss for the would-be felon had absolutely nothing to do with the fact that Sen. John Warner refused to endorse him; and with good reason.

Or the fact that had Congress not foolishly allowed North to testify about Irangate with full amnesty, good ol' Ollie would have done some hard time in the clink.

Numbers and more numbers

Here are the counties and cities that voted 60 percent or higher for James Webb yesterday in the Democratic Senate primary.

Albemarle (61.81)
Arlington (68.75)
Botetourt (61.28)
Clarke (68.31)
Dickinson (66.79)
Fairfax (61.35)
Grayson (66.78)
James City (61.85)
King George (65.78)
Loudoun (66.18)
Montgomery (74.88)
Nelson (63.47)
Orange (72.38)
Page (69.64)
Prince William (60.79)
Roanoke (62.32)
Scott (60.81)
Shenandoah (66.8)
Spotsylvania (67.55)
Stafford (69.89)
City of Alexandria (60.17)
City of Fairfax (67.22)
City of Falls Church (65.49)
City of Fredericksburg (64.64)
Galax (63.48)
City of Harrisonburg (60.8)
City of Lexington (69.61)
City of Manassas (62.25)
City of Poquoson (60.37)
City of Radford (66.37)
City of Staunton (64.68)
City of Williamsburg (64.92)
City of Winchester (60.86)

And here are the counties and cities that voted 60 percent or more for Harris Miller.

Amelia (67.37)
Brunswick (78.95)
Buchanan (70.82)
Buckingham (72.82)
Caroline (63.96)
Charles (70.63)
Dinwiddie (70.04)
Goochland (61.68)
Greensville (80.83)
Halifax (77.66)
Henrico (67.78)
Henry (64.91)
King & Queen (68.42)
King William (70.83)
Lee (76.65)
Louisa (60.14)
Lunenburg (70.94)
Mecklenburg (60.88)
New Kent (62.85)
Northumberland (62.46)
Nottoway (69.1)
Pittsylvania (65.3)
Powhatan (63.95)
Prince Edward (60.19)
Prince George (69.25)
Richmond (70.21)
Southampton (68.27)
Surry (74.59)
Sussex (75.72)
Wise (63.55)
Covington (63.89)
Danville (71.47)
Emporia (78.76)
Franklin (68.95)
Hampton (63.98)
Hopewell (69.83)
Norfolk (60.43)
Petersburg (81.06)
Portsmouth (78.63)
Richmond (69.86)
Suffolk (69.01)

Finally, here are the counties with turnouts of 5 percent or more.

Albemarle (5.18)
Arlington (9.29)
Fairfax (5.65)
Rappahannock (5.57)
City of Alexandria (7.61)
City of Charlottesville (6.73)
City of Fairfax (7.13)
City of Falls Church (12.42)
City of Lexington (6.23)
City of Williamsburg (7.35)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Kicking Ass in Fauquier

Out of 1,130 votes in Fauquier County, 454 votes or 40.2 percent voted for Miller and 676 or 59.8 percent voted for Webb.

Howling Latina worked the Waterloo precinct, with the largest number of voters. Out of 142 votes, 39 votes or 27.5 percent voted for Miller and 103 votes or 72.5 percent voted for Webb.

Oh yea, Howling Latina HOWLS!

Webb Wins!

WTOP has declared James Webb the winner in the Senate primary.

Oh yea, the good guy won, this time!

Next post numbers from Fauquier County. Howling Latina kicked ass in her precinct.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Bye, Bye Harris Miller

The numbers have been tallied and the results are in.

James Webb will beat Harris Miller in Virginia's 1st district by a substantial margin. Howling Latina predicts Webb will get approximately 62 percent of the votes in the 1st district and Miller will get 38 percent.

Here's where the numbers came from.

Out of 202 staunch Democratic voters contacted, HL reached 76 voters. Thirteen refused to talk. Eighteen said they were undecided. Seven said they supported Miller . Fifty said they supported Webb.

Adding the 18 "undecided" voters to the 13 who refused to talk, the possible pickup for either Harris or Webb are 31 votes.

Assuming a good share of the 31 voters who refused to talk or were undecided were actually either Miller supporters or leaning-Miller, say 85 percent, that adds approximately 26 voters to the Miller side and 5 to Webb.

The combined total is 26 + 7 for Miller or 33 votes; and 5 + 50 or 55 votes for Webb.

Voila, there's your 62 percent over 38 percent winning margin.

Oh yea, we're kicking butt tomorrow!

Good Bye Maury and

In an exclusive, TVNewser is reporting that Maury and Connie got the heave-ho at MSNBC; and their Saturday talk show has been cancelled.

With Rick Kaplan, the president of MSNBC getting the ax only a week earlier, looks like "Weekends with Maury & Connie" is the first show to pay the piper for poor ratings.

Look out Rita and Carlton, you could be next.

But in all fairness, the Saturday morning show that started on January 7, 2006 and included constant sparring and bickering between the two loverbirds was a total 30-minute bore.

First District Leans Webb

Howling Latina has nearly called every staunch Democrat in the 1st district; and without doing the actual math, predicts the 1st district will vote for Webb.

After finishing the entire list by tomorrow, HL will try to post totals and analyze what it could portend in the Tuesday election.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Hooknose and Smear --All You Need To Know

Aya ya ya, Spanish for give me a break!

The buzz about the hooknose Miller flyer is shamelessly making its way across the blogosphere.

Straight out of the Rove playbook, Harris Miller has tried to switch the subject only days before election.

Especially since nearly every Senate leader is endorsing his opponent in the Democratic primary.

Yes, Miller and his minions tried to shop the "Webb is a Jewbaiter" story all week long; but don't take Howling Latina's word for it, read what Marc Fisher of the Washington Post has to say on the subject.

And when you're done reading that, see what the progressive Virginia blogosphere thinks about Miller's phony fury; and then what a national blogger thinks of folks who write about the hooknose story without presenting all the facts.

Finally, HL will leave you with a quote from national political analyst Larry Sabato of UVA.
"I think that's a real stretch to call that anti-Semitic, and I'm not usually inclined to give candidates the benefit of the doubt," Sabato

Saturday, June 10, 2006

In Their Own Words

The Virginian-Pilot has an article where James Webb and Harris Miller each tell Virginians why they should vote for them.

In Webb's words:
I have had the privilege of serving our country as an infantry officer in the Marine Corps, as a full committee counsel in the U.S. House of Representatives, as assistant secretary of defense and as secretary of the Navy.

I have written eight books, worked on numerous film projects, and traveled around the world as a print and television journalist. I have taught literature at the university level. And I have served as a business consultant on projects in Southeast Asia.

I would like to bring this combination of experiences to bear on the issues now facing our country as your senator representing the commonwealth of Virginia.

Our nation’s capital is a place under siege. These days, more than 30,000 lobbyists circle around 535 elected representatives, often influencing the direction of our government in ways no ordinary citizen might either want or understand.

If we look at surveys of public attitudes, we find that two-thirds of people in America believe that the country is headed in the wrong direction. At the same time, we tend to re-elect 91 percent of our federally elected incumbents.

Like many Americans, I became deeply concerned about the direction of leadership at the federal level following the events of 9/11. After the disastrous mismanagement of the crisis that Hurricane Katrina brought to New Orleans, I decided for the first time in my life to seek an elected office so that I could more directly help our nation move into a brighter future.

Our campaign has been focusing on three major themes:

First, we must redirect our national security in a way that is more compatible with our traditional place in the world. We must end the war in Iraq and bring a renewed sense of stability to the Persian Gulf area. We must reinvigorate our foreign policy to focus on combating the forces of international terrorism. We must take a posture to address more assertively the strategic threats to our nation, particularly the military expansion of China and the emerging vulnerability of our economic security to policies that have resulted from improper trade relationships.

The second campaign theme involves economic fairness and social justice. This country is breaking into three pieces economically. The people at the top have never had it so good, largely as a result of globalization and internationalization of our economy. The middle class has become extraordinarily vulnerable as a result of globalization and the outsourcing of jobs. At the bottom, we are moving toward a permanent underclass caused by the lack of protection for wage-earners in our society. These trends can be reversed with the proper government leadership.

With respect to issues of social justice, I believe strongly that the power of government ends at our front door, unless there is a compelling reason for it to come inside. It is time for us to leave the political environment of divisiveness where people’s emotions are unnecessarily manipulated over issues of privacy. The government needs to leave us alone and let us live our lives.

The third theme in this campaign revolves around the unnecessary and dangerous expansion of presidential power in the wake of 9/11. I spent four years as a committee counsel at a time when the Congress fully understood its constitutional prerogatives. We need to have members of Congress who are aware of their constitutional place, who have the courage and willingness to stand up to executive overreach. Whether it is the recent NSA wire tapping debacle, or stonewalling attempts to bring accountability, this administration has ignored
every call for reasonable limits on executive power.

We are undergoing a sea change in American politics. The old labels of liberal and conservative no longer apply when we are examining the issues that affect the country and our future. I believe that there are many people who left the Democratic Party because of its foreign policy measures at the end of the Vietnam era. These same people would now be willing to come home to a Democratic Party that again embraces the principals of Jacksonian democracy and maintains a
Trumanesque common-sense style of leadership.

We measure the health of our society not by how people are doing at the top, but how the people who have no power are being represented in the corridors of power. For those who have no voice, I’d like to be that voice.

I’m asking for your support, and for your vote, in Tuesday’s Democratic primary.

In Miller's Words:

IT IS TIME for a change in Washington.

I am running for the U.S. Senate to bring real change in the direction of this country so that families in Virginia and across our nation still have the opportunity to live the American Dream.

Over the past several months, I have traveled close to 25,000 miles around this state, talking to Virginians from every region and walk of life. And the message from all of them has been crystal-clear: The leadership in Washington has taken this country in the wrong direction.

Now it’s time to turn things around. It’s time to invest in the future and create opportunity for every Virginian.

I know how important it is to be given every opportunity to succeed. I grew up in a steel and coal mining town in rural Pennsylvania. My
parents worked hard, but our family saw a lot of tough times. I started working when I was 13, including one summer working in a steel mill. Thanks to those jobs and student loans, I became the first member of my immediate family to graduate from college.

Growing up, I learned the importance of working hard, of community, of perseverance — and the impact you can have by reaching out and
helping your fellow men and women.

Those are the values that have helped me succeed as a businessman, as a father and husband, and as a community leader.

And those are the values that have made me a lifelong Democrat.
I’ve lived the American Dream. But right now, under the leadership of George Bush and George Allen, too many families in Virginia are finding their opportunity at the American Dream out of reach.
We should be investing in our future and getting America back on the right track:

- Reversing the economic policies of Bush and Allen that have led to huge budget deficits and hurt middle-class and working families;

- Taking on the oil industry’s record profits by making sure they pay their fair share to invest in new and alternative energy sources;

- Establishing a clear exit strategy for Iraq and firing Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld;

- Improving education by recruiting the best teachers and making higher education more affordable; and,

- Cleaning up the culture of corruption and divisive partisanship in Washington.

George Allen has had 5½ years to make a real difference for Virginians in Washington.

Instead, he has consistently put partisan politics ahead of the people of Virginia. In fact, he has voted with the disastrous policies of George Bush 96 percent of the time — more than almost any other member of the U.S. Senate.

Under Bush and Allen, we have seen the record budget surpluses of the Clinton administration turn into record deficits, crippling our ability to make critical national investments.

The price of gas has more than doubled, as Allen has continued handing out massive tax breaks to oil companies and voted against making price gouging a federal crime.

And Allen has served as the ultimate rubber-stamp for the Bush administration’s failed policies in Iraq.

Together, Bush and Allen believe in an open-ended commitment that will span into future presidencies, with no exit strategy in sight, costing us hundreds of billions of dollars, and more importantly, thousands of American lives.

Allen has been playing partisan political games while the serious problems we face have gotten worse and worse.

That is why it is time for a change.

As Virginia’s next U.S. senator, I will work for change that creates a better future for our families — restoring fiscal responsibility to our government, improving education and job training, and investing in alternative energy to break our addiction to foreign oil.

And as senator, I will stop this rubber-stamping of the president’s disastrous war in Iraq. I am the only candidate in this race who is saying Donald Rumsfeld must be fired for his complete failure of leadership in this war.

I have outlined a strategy for getting our troops home from Iraq, by setting specific guidelines for withdrawal, something the Bush administration refuses to do.

And I will work on both sides of the aisle to demand that we shift the security burden to the Iraqis.

These are not easy problems to fix — it’s going to take a determined
effort by our elected leaders to tackle these issues in a constructive,
bipartisan way.

Virginians know it’s possible — they’ve seen it right here in our commonwealth.

Great Virginia Democrats like Jerry Baliles, Doug Wilder, Chuck Robb, Mark Warner and now Tim Kaine have brought people together to make Virginia the best-run state in the nation.

I will bring that proud tradition of Virginia Democratic leadership to Washington.

As a “Mark Warner” Democrat, I will never back down from challenging George Allen on the issues where he has failed the people of Virginia, and I will be relentless in offering my positive agenda for change.

That is why I am proud that The Washington Post has endorsed me in the primary, saying that I “would make the better senator ...
Virginians would be well served by having a lawmaker of Mr. Miller’s evident energy, commitment and depth.”

I am also proud and grateful to have received the endorsements of state and local officials across the commonwealth, including Hampton Roads-area leaders like Sens. Mamie Locke and Louise Lucas, Del. Lionell Spruill and Virginia Beach School Board members Pat Edmonson, Todd Davidson and Ed Fissinger.

These are the leaders who know what it takes to win in Virginia, and they are endorsing me because they know that I have the background
and the experience to beat George Allen this fall and bring real change for Virginia families in the United States Senate.

With real change in Washington, we can restore people’s faith in government, we can make sure that our government works well for its citizens, and we can ensure that every Virginian has the chance to live the American Dream.

National Blogger Duped

A top national blogger has been duped by the Miller hooknose story!

Last night, Raw Story led above the fold with the following lede, “Jewish stereotyping charged in Sen. race.”

By this morning, the lede and story were below the fold and read, “Jewish slur in Virginia Senate race?”

An improvement, but why does this phony baloney outrage merit any space?!?

Webb supporters, you may want to write Raw Story and ask them to pull this non-story off their site; and tell them how Miller is using fabricated outrage to distract from the real story, a tsunami of James Webb support from national and local Democratic leaders is drowning out Miller’s message.

And while you're at it, you may also want to drop a line to the good folks at the Richmond Times-Dispatch; they’re back to their pro-Miller nasty spinning, looking for maligned victims without a cause.

Friday, June 09, 2006

9/11 Commissioner Criticizes Coulter

After watching Ann Coulter for years as she pops into my screen before I can switch the channel, Howling Latina has come to the ever-increasingly evident conclusion that it's all a con game.

No one could be that insensitive; and like Howard Stern's shtick on radio-land, Coulter has become a political pundit shock jock.

Just in time to launch her latest drivel to the number one spot on the New York Times best selling list, Coulter's outrageous comments have created quite the recent ruckus.

Appearances at the "Today Show," "The Situation Room" with Tucker Carlson, and Lord knows where else (although she hasn't made it to the "Steve Colbert Report.")

Indeed, a Democratic congressmen even denounced Coulter inside the bowels of Congress.
Rep. Rahm Emmanuel, D-Ill., said Thursday on the House floor that Coulter is a "hatemonger" and called on Republicans to denounce her: "I must ask my colleagues on the other side of the aisle: Does Ann Coulter speak for you when she suggests poisoning not Supreme Court Justices or slanders the 9/11 ... widows? If not, speak now. Your silence allows her to be your spokesman."
The Associated Press via Forbes also reports that Sept. 11 commissioner Tim Roehmer has asked decent folks to help Ann recover from her predisposition to insults by not buying her latest trash.

"Americans shouldn't contribute to her profiting from these vicious remarks," he is quoted.

Remarks, which HL might add, are meant to offend, anger and create the all-important buzz.

But folks, save yourself the $$$. If Coulter is down to attacking poor 9/11 widows, she's obviously hitting her bottom in the barrel of ideas. Without book sales, she'll hopefully join a 12-step program of recovery and see the bankruptcy of her words.

Besides, she can't forever strut around in a tight little skirt and flip her blond mane; she'll eventually be too old for the gig.

Hat tip to Improvisations for the lovely Coulter picture that so perfectly captures her spirit.

Markos Moulitsas on "Meet the Press"

Yep, and read all about it here.

Special Time for "Meet the Press"

This Sunday "Meet the Press" will be airing at 8:00 am on the East Coast. But Howling Latina has some really great news for bloggers.

Our blog god, Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos has crashed the gate and will be a guest on "Meet the Press."

General George Casey, the commanding general of the Multi-National Task Force in Iraq will be the starting guest to talk about the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and what it could mean for the future of Iraq and how Iraqis feel about America.

Moulitsas will then be interviewed by Tim Russert and join Jonathan Alter, senior editor and columnist of Newsweek Magazine, Amy Walter, senior editor of The Cook Political Report and Byron York, the Washington House correspondent for the National Review and chat it up at the "Meet the Press Roundtable."

The topic du jour will be the upcoming election.

Looks like the little Las Vegas Kos convention hosted by Moulitsas with Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and DNC Chair Howard Dean as guest speakers finally sparked the interest of mainstream media; and gave the founder and editor of "the world's most widely read political weblog" some well deserved love.

Folks, wake your butts up early and tune in. It should be a dandy!

Bitter To The End

Tom DeLay finally ended his long good-bye with a fiery partisan speech from the floor of the House.

No Mr. Nice Guy. "Bitter to the end."

The New York Times via Raw Story writes:
"Democrats resisted a Republican plan to allow him to deliver his valedictory from the House floor. But DeLay crossed them up by submitting his resignation from the Appropriations Committee on the floor, providing an opening for his speech celebrating political discord."
A true follower of constitutional principles and our founding fathers faith, DeLay told the House crowd, "You show me a nation without partisanship, and I'll show you a tyranny."

You see, in order to keep democracy and apparently follow the footsteps of Christ, you gotta tear down your political opponents and slime them all the way to the bank.

In a bit of nostalgic posturing, DeLay concluded his farewell speech with a quote from the great statesmen of decades ago, Sir SnagglePuss.
"I yield back the floor of our beloved House," DeLay said at the end of his last speech as a back-bencher. "And I exit, as always, stage right."
How very inventive; and thank you Washington Post for the darling quote.

"Baby Jessica" Got Married

In the mid-1980s, Baby Jessica, a precocious toddler fell in an abandoned well in Midland, Texas; and as a nation watched and prayed, Baby Jessica was stuck inside the well for 58 hours.

Well, People Magazine via Capitol Annex writes that baby Jessica is all grown up and married. In late January 2006, Jessica McClure, the real name of Baby Jessica who is now 19-years old, married Daniel Morales at a "rural church outside Midland."

Howling Latina realizes this isn't exactly breaking news; but for folks old enough to remember the tragic incident who might from time to time wonder what ever became of Baby Jessica, now you know.

And for readers too young to know what HL is talking about, Little Baby Jessica has a Web site with a timeline and links chronicling her history.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

And Thank You, Larry Sabato

Oh boy, the folks who want to tar and feather Jim Webb as anti-Semitic went to town today.

Webb recently sent out a caricature of Harris Miller in a flyer that the Miller tin foil crowd claims absolutely proves Jim Webb is an anti-Semitic bigot.

Give Howling Latina a break! And if you don't trust her, see for yourself.

After all the gnashing of teeth by way of wild accusations, good ol' Larry Sabato framed the faux outrage perfectly.

Larry Sabato said the flier wasn't really any worse than other campaign literature he'd seen in hotly contested races.

"I think that's a real stretch to call that anti-Semitic, and I'm not usually inclined to give candidates the benefit of the doubt," Sabato said.

Ever the clever boy, Miller's campaign told the media that they had little time to worry about the flyer, but not before noting that the cartoon was "far beyond what any Virginia candidate has had lobbed at them"

You see, "[d]espite the very personal attacks, [they were] going to focus on...message."

Oh yes, how very magnanimous of the grandstander and baby-kisser as his minions probably called every media outlet to express their indignation. spin the Miller flyer as "jewbaiting" so they could try to stop the vote hemorrhaging that followed after the latest Democratic bigwig endorsement of Webb.

Thank you, Gov. Kaine

Only an hour or so before Percy Walton was scheduled to be executed at Greensville Correctional Center in Virginia, Gov. Tim Kaine granted a stay of execution.

As Howling Latina noted in an earlier post at The Virginia Progressive, medical experts have testified in court that Walton is insane.

Moreover, he only has an IQ of 66; but the Supreme Court early this evening refused to intervene; and the only person with authority to stop the execution did so, thank God.

Gov. Kaine granted a temporary stay of execution by delaying the ultimate punishment until Dec. 8, 2006; he wants to study the issue of Walton’s mental state.

This time around, medical experts without a dog in the fight will undoubtedly testify what every person involved in the case already knows. Walton is criminally insane and mentally retarded.

Thank you, governor, for your mercy within the law!

Folks in Ft. Bend County Texas Glad To See DeLay Go

Howling Latina was trolling through the Internet and came across a post in Ft. Bend Now where the writer praised disgraced Rep. Tom DeLay with the lede, "Faith In God Allowed DeLay To Withstand Years Of Partisan Attacks."

Brad Long of Houston claimed "Tom has the peace that only comes through his boundless faith in God."

HL disagreed and simply amended her latest DeLay musing and posted it in the comment section.

Well, looks like many folks in Texas agree more with HL than Long. A kindred spirit writes:
"My faith in God allowed me to withstand years of poor representation. And God answered my prayers and removed Tom DeLay from Congress. Looks like my faith was stronger. Praise the Lord!"
Indeed, a majority of negative comments revealed why DeLay chose to leave Congress so intrepidly; he was gonna get a serious butt whipping in the fall election by former Democratic Congressman Nick Lampson.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Is the Con Lineup History at MSNBC?!?

Today the blogosphere is a abuzz with the resignation of MSNBC president, Rick Kaplan.

Even though MSNBC has ever-so slowly started to climb out of the bottom of the rating barrel, not soon enough for NBC News president Steve Capus.

Effective immediately Kaplan resigned; and Howling Latina who has been posting of late about cable news ratings wonders if Tucker and Rita will soon go the way of Norville, Ron and Monica.

In all fairness to Ron Reagan, matching him up with Monica Crowley was a terrible idea; absolutely no CHEMISTRY! Especially considering Crowley's Fox pedigree.

The top two cash cows at MSNBC are "Countdown" and "Hardball," two shows with a progressive or centrist host, although Howling Latina has to acknowledge MSNBC keeps the righties under a tight editorial gridlock; no outlandish lies or spin allowed of the Hannity and O'Reilly variety.

Call me loony, but if I were trying to establish a new brand with loyal viewership, instead of trying to outflank Fox and their wingnut audience, HL would go after all the lefties in Cable-land; once word got around the liberal blogosphere, MSNBC's ratings would skyrocket.

DeLay Keeping the $$$

In a story today, Roll Call writes that disgraced and soon to be former Congressman Tom DeLay is keeping the loot his unsuspecting stooges, er, I mean supporters, gave to his reelection campaign.

As of March 31, DeLay had more than $1.4 million sitting in his campaign account. But while he won't be spending it on re-election, DeLay said he won't be showering it on his colleagues or the National Republican Congressional Committee, either.

"It's already spent," DeLay said. "I need it to pay legal expenses. There's not enough in my campaign account to pay my legal expenses.

"In addition to using his campaign money, DeLay also has been drawing on his legal defense fund to pay his burgeoning lawyers' bills. Once he's out of the House, DeLay said, he will soon establish a private legal defense fund that will have no limits on how much donors can give.

That's right, GOPers, this is the guy your current leaders worshipped at the feet of until recently.

Kinna makes you proud and miss him already, don't it?!?

But not too worry; dear Tom wants to be a GOP political consultant and help his party carry the message of accountability, moral values and the conservative way of life to the rest of the nation.

Now that DeLay is just another has-been with plenty of folks who never really liked him in the first place, let's see how many Republicans pony-up and hire him, let alone contribute to his defense fund.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Allen Spending Early $$$ in Senate Race

Looks like Sen. George Felix Allen is taking time off from his presidential campaign to concentrate on a more urgent mission, winning reelection to the Senate in the fall.

Good move, Felix, especially since only a few years ago the Washingtonian reported that your aides didn't think too highly of your brainpower, and cast their votes on behalf of you to the "no rocket scientist" category!

Now, Daily Press Newspaper reports that Allen is "tak[ing] to the airwaves with a 30-second television spot" to introduce himself to voters and tell them what a great job he's done during the last six years for Virginians.

You know, like the Terri Schiavo vote; and now the Marriage Protection Act. Guess someone finally broke the news to Allen; this ain't no cakewalk but a real honest to goodness, down-to-the wire race.
Allen, once thought to have an easy ride to re-election this fall, will launch a statewide television campaign ad...for what is shaping up to be a spirited contest.
As political analyst Larry Sabato is quoted saying, "Jim Webb is George Allen's worst nightmare." So the friendly goober figures he better define himself before Webb sticks his combat boots up his fake cowboy hindparts.

"It's a good time to put out a positive message," Wadhams said. "Virginia is a state that has seen a lot of growth in the last five years. Some people have never seen Sen. Allen's name on the ballot before."

But Democrats ain't buying the snakeoil Allen is trying to sell, pointing to the "relatively early TV campaign as a sign of nervousness within the Allen camp."

Oh dear, expect Allen to talk about his "truth in sentencing" bullshit law he signed as governor that relegated teen adult children of the lowly and the political mighty to mandatory prison sentences without parole.

There is now little doubt that Allen must focus much of his time this year on winning another six-year Senate term. Wadhams, hired to head his Senate office and explore a presidential bid, has taken a leave of absence from the senator's office, to run Allen's Senate re-election campaign full time.

Wadhams insisted the TV ad did not signal any slippage in Allen's polling numbers.

George, it's time to pay the piper for your rubber stamp support of the worst president in the world!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Top Dog Frank Wolf

The Republicans are responsible for the unholy mess in Congress; and one of the leading evildoers is Virginia’s Rep. Frank Wolf.

Every time-wasting, intemperate, irresponsible bill was ushered and rubber-stamped by Wolf.

And ranking Congress by power, of Capital Advantage, ranked Wolf number 11 in the Republican chamber and number 14 over-all.

Virginians need to hold him accountable!

Factors that affected ranking were number of years in Congress, chairmanship of committee or subcommittee, membership in Appropriations Committee, sponsorship of successful bill or amendment, and so on.

Here is the ranking for all Virginia legislators:

Name (Rank by Power in Senate)
Sen. Warner (R-VA) (21)
Sen. Allen (R-VA) - (42)

Name (Rank by Power in the House)
Rep. Wolf (R-VA-10) (14)
Rep. Davis (R-VA-11) (58)
Rep. Davis (R-VA-1) (59)
Rep. Cantor (R-VA-7) (78)
Rep. Goodlatte (R-VA-6) (99)
Rep. Forbes (R-VA-4) (107)
Rep. Drake (R-VA-2) (194)
Rep. Goode (R-VA-5) (198)
Rep. Moran (D-VA-8) (208)
Rep. Boucher (D-VA-9) (246)
Rep. Scott (D-VA-3) (355)

Gosh, Howling Latina did not realize how much weight my own congresswoman had in Washington; and all the more reason why Shawn O'Donnell must win his race against Jo Ann Davis in the 1st district. Only 1 point separates Jo Ann from her better known Republican namesake, Tom Davis.

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