Category Archives: Congress

The Big O meets the GOP

So I watched the president’s appearance before the GOP House caucus. It came, of course, two days after Mr. Obama delivered his State of the Union address. Drafting an SOU is generally a team effort. I have been on one of those teams (1988), penning the best received, per the pulse polling, section of that […]

Last Call

During the holidays Clark called me and said, “Ed, you’re lookin’ like a fool with your pants on the ground.” And I said, “What?!?” And he said, “Oh, nevermind, it’s just something I’ve been working on with a client. It probably won’t go anywhere. “The real reason I’m calling is this….” He went on to […]

The Eternal Sunshine of the Speaker’s Mind

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said this Friday about the earthquake in Haiti: “From my own experience with earthquakes, being from San Francisco, I think that this can be an opportunity for a real boom economy in Haiti…. It can leapfrog all over its past challenges – economically, politically, and demographically in terms of the rich […]

Harry Qua Harry

As any PR flak knows, the best way to knock your client’s bad news off the front pages is for worse news to catch reporters’ attention. Less scrupulous hucksters will fabricate rumors and stories to help move the media. But sometimes events just fall into place. So it’s been for Harry Reid. When news broke […]

Time for a White Knight on Health Care?

Health care reform has turned into a fratricidal war among Democrats. Liberals vs. moderates; Reid vs. Lieberman; Ben Nelson vs. the world. Meantime, poll numbers for the president, Congressional Democrats, and the reform effort are falling through the floor. The latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll shows more Americans would rather do nothing than pass the Reid […]

Stop Scaring People! That’s My Job

The Wall Street Journal reports on a testy exchange between President Obama and Congressional Republicans at the White House yesterday. “At one point, the president told Republican leaders to ‘stop trying to frighten the American people,’ displaying a chart showing diminishing job losses over the past four quarters, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) said […]

Congressional BS on BCS

Good news! Yesterday, with apparently little else to do, a subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee “approved legislation … aimed at forcing college football to switch to a playoff system to determine its national champion.” That should make unemployed Americans feel better. In the face of this absurdity, a few members of the […]

David Obey Gets It Right

Kudos to House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey (hold on a sec … waiting to see if my head explodes … nope, good) for seeing the war in Afghanistan as something we should all pay for. According to ABC News, the Wisconsin Democrat, who opposes deepening our involvement in Afghanistan, said that if we’re going […]

Carl Levin Leads the Tax Brigade

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin has shown an uncanny ability to be wrong about almost every issue involving Iraq and Afghanistan in the last decade. This weekend, he’s come up with another doozy. According to Bloomberg, the Michigan Democrat is proposing a tax on higher earners – say it with me now, individuals […]

Summers: Sometimes Good Ideas Have to Wait

I think it’s refreshing when someone in Washington who has some skin in the game — a politician, an Administration official — tells a basic truth plainly. The latest example is Larry Summers, President Obama’s top economic policy adviser, who addressed economic recovery, debt, and stimulus at yesterday’s Reuters Washington Summit. Asked whether stimulus measures […]

Democrats are Keen on One War

In his weekly address Saturday, President Obama reminded Americans that last November we “went to the polls in historic numbers and demanded change.” We “sought a change in our politics: a politics that too often has … fostered division.”  Oddly enough, he said this mere seconds after claiming that America’s health insurance industry is “deceptive […]

First Amendment Smackdown

Congress’s most notable First Amendment warrior, Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, is a little steamed about Democrats’ latest efforts to squelch opposition to government health care. You may have seen that Humana, a health insurance company and provider of Medicare services under the Medicare Advantage plan, sent a letter to its customers letting them know […]

Voices of Moderation

Last night, President Obama appeared on Late Show with David Letterman to reaffirm his position that people who oppose government health care are nuts, while he is just another in a string of great leaders who’ve tried to “bring about significant changes” in American life. You know, FDR, Reagan, Obama. (I think I found a kindred […]

Where Have I Heard That Before?

Associated Press, September 17th, 2009: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday that the anti-government rhetoric over President Barack Obama’s health care reform effort is concerning because it reminds her of the violent debate over gay rights that roiled San Francisco in the 1970s. Anyone voicing hateful or violent rhetoric, she told reporters, must take responsibility […]

Hark! A Plan?

Finally heeding my advice*, President Obama is planning to get more explicit about what he wants out of health care reform during an address to Congress and the nation Wednesday night. While much of the country may think, “Seriously? Again with the primetime?” the president could do himself some real good if he uses the forum […]