Archive of Articles for September, 2007

Ex Post Facto And Rotating Regional Primaries

[ Posted Thursday, September 20th, 2007 – 17:10 UTC ]

It seems to be Constitution Week for this column.

Today I'd like to examine two constitutional questions -- whether Congress can give immunity to a crime already committed, and whether Congress can force states into a primary schedule of their own devising.

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Free Speech Zone

[ Posted Wednesday, September 19th, 2007 – 14:50 UTC ]

Free Speech Zone

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Counting Senate Votes On Iraq... 56... 57... 60... 67....

[ Posted Wednesday, September 19th, 2007 – 03:40 UTC ]

In the "good news" department -- South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson is now back in action. That gives Democrats another solid vote on Iraq. Which means they only need pick up three more, in order to put something on Bush's desk. OK, it still will need seven more votes after that to overturn a veto -- but hey, one step at a time.

There are four names being floated as candidates for further GOP aisle-crossing on Iraq. These are (to date): Lamar Alexander from Tennessee, George Voinovich from Ohio, Lisa Murkowski from Alaska, and (a surprise to me) Elizabeth Dole from North Carolina.

I strongly urge anyone who lives in these four states (who also wants to end the Iraq war) to contact your senator today and let them know they have constituents who will support their actions if they vote with the Democrats.

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Tuesday Frivolity

[ Posted Tuesday, September 18th, 2007 – 15:10 UTC ]

Today's hodgepodge is mostly frivolous stuff that I just couldn't resist. There are one or two non-frivolous stories as well, but there seemed to be an embarrassment of riches in the wacky news today. So without further ado, and with a new box of "Herb Caen brand" three-dots to use up, here we [...]

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An Anti-War March, Schenck v. United States, And Free Speech

[ Posted Monday, September 17th, 2007 – 16:57 UTC ]

We keep stumbling towards reaching the ideals of the Constitution, sometimes slipping back and sometimes not making any progress. Even though a draft does not exist today to be protested against, it is a comforting thought that nobody arrested this weekend was arrested for what they were saying. And I do not fear in the slightest that I will be hauled into court for blogging on this subject. So we have made some small progress, Guantanamo and warrantless wiretapping notwithstanding.

So celebrate Constitution Day with me by reviewing the First Amendment. Someday we'll actually achieve the ideal it enshrines.

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Another Sleepless Night At Scandal Central

[ Posted Saturday, September 15th, 2007 – 14:38 UTC ]

Big Announcement:

We are very proud to announce that CWCunningham has won this week's "Cartoonist of the Week" from You can see his achievement at this Daily Kos article. You can also visit the daily LeftToonLane page to see a great selection of "lefty" cartoons.

Long Night

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Memo To Democrats: Talking Points

[ Posted Friday, September 14th, 2007 – 14:22 UTC ]

So Petraeus and Crocker have reported, President Bush has spoken to the nation, and the congressional war debate is slated to begin in earnest next week. Since the Democrats seem to be incapable of staying "on message" the way Republicans effortlessly manage to do, I'd like to steal a page from the Republican playbook. It's an idea whose time has come: Democratic talking points.

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Iraq Oil Law Doomed To Failure

[ Posted Thursday, September 13th, 2007 – 12:15 UTC ]

This story is likely going to be buried with the flood of other news today (Bush's nationally televised speech, the assassination of the Sunni sheik Bush met with a few weeks ago, Britney Spears' lipsynching, etc.), but it deserves more attention than it is going to get.

If Democrats were smart, they'd include this in their official response to Bush's speech tonight, as a milestone of utter failure of the Iraqis to politically reconcile now or any time in the near future. But that may require a lot more political savvy than Democrats have shown they are capable of mustering. Which is a shame, because it is such a glaring example of the White House's complete inability to predict the future in Iraq.

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Cartoonist Experiencing Technical Difficulties

[ Posted Wednesday, September 12th, 2007 – 20:04 UTC ]

Please Stand By


Our resident cartoonist is having serious hardware problems, we apologize for not running a cartoon today. Hopefully his new hard drive will be up and running soon....

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What Democrats Need To Say Before Bush's Speech

[ Posted Wednesday, September 12th, 2007 – 03:30 UTC ]

Democrats in Congress have to quickly decide what to do about this state of affairs. Because if they do nothing, the Republicans are going to run next year on the following slogan: "Trust us to take care of national security -- we are bringing U.S. troops home from Iraq, but we're doing it in a sober, reasonable, and adult way; by listening to the counsel of generals and taking their advice seriously. Democrats have obviously proven they do not have what it takes to put America's interests before politics, and we do."

Whether this political strategy will work or not is an open question, but you can bet your bottom dollar that it will be the campaign spin from the Republicans. And it might prove to be more effective than it now sounds. If Democrats aren't careful, Republicans could wind up owning the "withdrawal" as a political issue.

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