Mid Day Update
The Senate passed a bill to prohibit GOP voter intimidation efforts, which became prevalent over the last three elections under the Rove game plan and GOP efforts to disenfranchise minority voters through fraud. The bill will now be reconciled with a similar House version, and then Democrats can dare Bush to veto it. Separately, the New York Times came out in support of Democratic representative Rush Holt’s bill to clean up electronic voting, which would go a long way towards preventing the GOP from stealing any more elections. The electronic voting industry is opposing the bill, claiming that it takes 54 months to develop, install, and train election workers in new machines, making the 2012 deadline impossible. Really? If the Help America Vote Act was passed in 2002, how in hell did the GOP get all those new voting machines in place to steal votes in the 2004 elections?
Quinnipiac University’s latest poll in Ohio shows that Hillary has opened up a seven-point lead over Rudy Giuliani, after being tied with him less than a month ago. Clinton now leads all Republicans in head-to-head match-ups. But neither Clinton or Obama have the biggest leads against all Republicans in Ohio. John Edwards leads all of them by larger margins than either Clinton or Obama, casting doubts upon claims that a populist message can’t work in battleground states next year.
Public Wants Bush-Cheney Investigated Over 9/11
Zogby reports today that 51% of Americans want Congress to investigate Bush and Cheney’s actions before, during, and after the 9/11 attacks, up from 38% last year.
Patriot Act Undercut
A federal judge in New York today tossed out part of the Patriot Act, which allowed the FBI to require Internet service providers by way of a National Security Letter to turn over personal records without telling customers that they had done so.
Democrats Pass Student Loan Reforms
Another part of the Democrats’ “100 Hours Agenda” is achieved as Bush is expected to sign student loan reforms in the coming days.
Overcoming GOP SCHIP Obstructionism
To get around Mitch McConnell’s obstructionism aimed at stopping a conference committee on the SCHIP expansion bill, House and Senate Democrats will work directly with individual Republicans on a bill that can get to the floor of both houses for a final vote, daring McConnell to filibuster against kids and Bush to veto children’s health insurance while he adds $50 billion to Iraq.
Dems Iraq Strategy
Over a month ago I suggested that the Democrats take one more stab at an August withdrawal deadline for Iraq, and then fall back to a mission change and troop rotation resolution that didn’t have a withdrawal deadline, in the hopes that enough GOP votes could be obtained for a middle ground. That appears to be what Harry Reid is doing now, and with some prospects for success.
Homeland Security Flopping
How can we fault the Iraqis for not meeting our benchmarks when our own Department of Homeland Security fails to meet its own benchmarks?