Thursday :: Dec 22, 2005

Morning Update: Allawi Whines; Frist Bumbles; Fitz On The Hunt


by Steve

How ironic is this? Your handpicked savior in Iraq is now complaining that the election was riddled with fraud, and is demanding along with the Sunnis that an international body conduct an investigation of Iraq’s December 15th election, or else over 100 politicians and groups will boycott the next Parliament. Allawi’s complaints are probably posturing to hide his embarrassment at doing worse in this election than he did in the last one. And it is also a signal that when the Iranian-supported Shia government takes full control next year thanks to Bush, Allawi will return to being an exile. The possible unrest in the coming weeks arising from a Shiite power consolidation comes as Rummy signaled today in Baghdad that the Bush Administration plans to draw down below our current 138,000 baseline in the coming weeks, and at a time when our allies in the “Coalition of the Willing” are heading for the exits as well.

Bill Frist’s humiliation continues as he is forced to eat crow and accept a six-month extension of the Patriot Act while the bipartisan civil liberties concerns of Senators are worked out next year. Oh, and did I mention this was a loss for Bush too, who tried to badger senators in his own party to cave in on this, only to get blown off? This follows on the heels of Frist’s exploding cigar routine over ANWR, where he was unable to see that he didn’t have the votes for a measure that the DOE itself said would only amount to a drop at most of 30-50 cents a barrel years from now in the cost of oil. Of course the GOP will try again early next year, and may very well succeed, but we'll see.

Raw Story reported late yesterday that when Patrick Fitzgerald is finished with Karl Rove, which is expected by one source to result in at least a possible grand jury indictment for making false statements to the FBI and Justice Department, he will turn his attention towards Dick Cheney, the State Department (read: John Bolton), Condi’s NSC, and even will investigate the source of the Niger forgeries.

So now we know why Bush passed over J. Michael Luttig and picked reliable whack job Samuel Alito instead. Kevin Drum gives us a good summary of how Luttig and his court smacked around the Bush Administration over its duplicity in the Padilla case.

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