Iowa Presidential Watch
Holding the Democrats accountable


July 27, 2006  

"The president made a big deal about bringing the Iraqi prime minister [Nouri al-Maliki] to address Congress," Democrat National Committee Chairman Howard Dean said. "The Iraqi prime minister is an anti-Semite. We don't need to spend $200, $300, $500 billion bringing democracy to Iraq to turn it over to people who believe Israel doesn't have a right to defend itself."

"Thank God for Bill Nelson, because we'd have another crook in the United States Senate if it weren't for him. He is going to beat the pants off Katherine Harris," Democrat National Committee Chairman Howard Dean said. "She doesn't understand that it'sÖimproper to be chairman of a campaign and count the votes at the same time. This is not Russia and she is not Stalin."

"My concern is that at the moment of the greatest need for diplomacy in our recent history, we are not particularly effective at it," said Sen. Joseph Biden, (D-DE) Minority leader of the Foreign Relations Committee, regarding the reason for his opposition to confirming John Bolton as U.N. Ambassador.

Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-CT) said of John Bolton that he, "clearly has an aversion, in my view, to building consensus."


J U S T   P O L I T I C S


Middle East intractable

The NY Times offers a slant on a poll that shows many Americans see the problem in the Middle East as a long-standing problem that canít be solved. However, the underlying message of the poll is that Americanís believe this is an age-old problem that canít be solved:

Americans are overwhelmingly pessimistic about the state of affairs in the Middle East, with majorities doubtful there will ever be peace between Israel and its neighbors, or that American troops will be able to leave Iraq anytime soon, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.

No-bid contract abuse

Something to cause the Bush administration further migraines is a bi-partisan congressional report on abuses in no-bid contracts for Homeland Security. The Washington Post reports on the issue:

The value of contracts awarded without full competition increased 739 percent from 2003 to 2005, to $5.5 billion, more than half the $10 billion awarded by the department that year. By comparison, the agency awarded a total of $3.5 billion in contracts in 2003, the year it was created.

Among the contracts that went awry were deals for hiring airport screeners, inspecting airport luggage, detecting radiation at the nation's ports, securing the borders and housing Hurricane Katrina evacuees. Investigators looking into those contracts turned up whole security systems that needed to be scrapped, contractor bills for luxury hotel rooms and Homeland Security officials who bought personal items with government credit cards.

New Hampshire schedule

Gov. Bill Richardson (D-NM) makes an appearance on Aug. 3 and 4. He will attend events in Manchester, Concord, Tilton, Keene and Peterborough, according to state lobbyist Dick Bouley who is helping Richardson.

Arkansas Republican Gov. Mike Huckabee and his band will appear at a $50 fundraiser for Executive Councilor Ray Wieczorek on Aug. 10 at the Palazzi Corporation in Manchester.

Democrat John Edwards will return to New Hampshire in two weeks for a fund-raising event with state Sens. David Gottesman and Peter Burling and District 6 candidate Jackie Cilley.

Bill Clinton coming to Iowa

Former President Bill Clinton will headline the Iowa Democrat Jefferson Jackson Day Dinner in Des Moines, Oct 14th.

It is widely expected that his wife, Sen. Hillary Clinton, will be a candidate for her party's presidential nomination. Of course, President Clinton's visit kicked-off speculation about that possibility.

"All he's got to do is show up, and people within the press and general citizens are going to ask if this some tipping of the hand toward his wife. She is going to win this or lose this nomination independently of him," said Dennis Goldford, a political science professor at Drake University.

"Let's be clear - Senator Clinton is campaigning for re-election with her constituents in New York. We are very glad that President Clinton is going to be able to be in the company of Iowa Democrats this fall," Ann Lewis, Sen. Clinton's spokeswoman, said in response to the Des Moines Register's inquiry.



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