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Washington Whispers

October 2007


A Mad Money Booyah! for Hillary Aide's Book

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ILLUSTRATION BY JOE CIARDIELLO FOR USN&WRThe excitable CNBC Mad Money host Jim Cramer has just added a new file in his computer. "I have it as 'Mark Penn Idea,' " he tells us. "I have this working page in my PC for when a new idea strikes me from his work because it is that explosive." Yes,

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The New Worker Wears Green

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Watch for the 2008 presidential race to strike a novel enviro-phrase: green-collar workers. Sen. Hillary Clinton is already using it in a bid to appear forward-thinking on what the global workforce will look like. "She believes these are the tech jobs for the 21st century," says an aide about new ...

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Patrolling Iraq for Bad Guys and Girls

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The skies of Baghdad are dotted with Goodyear-blimp-style balloons, or aerostats, that track the movements of militia thugs near U.S. bases. Lately, though, some have run into a spate of bad luck. One of the tethered blimps was blown away earlier this month by harsh winds, requiring jets to shoot ...

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Bad Press Hits Blackwater's Biz

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Congressional investigations, Iraqi government probes, and a bad run of PR disasters have caught up to Blackwater USA, the security contractor under fire in the war. We're told that Pakistan political star Benazir Bhutto, targeted in a suicide bombing upon her return last month from exile, wanted ...

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Can Obama Sell to Blacks and Whites?

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Just in time for the early primaries and caucuses in January, Simon & Schuster is shopping a book for media outlets to serialize that declares Sen. Barack Obama won't win because he's caught between strategies to woo blacks and whites. A Bound Man: Why We Are Excited About Obama and Why He Can't ...

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Huffing and Puffing Against Cigar Taxes

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Nothing says success better than a handmade Dominican Republic PG cigar and a tumbler of rich Brugal rum. But for the island nation's ambassador, Flavio Darío Espinal, the victory was short-lived. He called a party last week to celebrate President Bush's veto of expanding a child health ...

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'Senator Detroit' Is Crazy for Hybrids

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Better gas mileage is great, but Michigan Sen. Carl Levin is bigger on new fuel technology. And he shows it on the road. The Motowner, who used to drive a Ford Escape hybrid, now rides in a Chevy E85 Impala, which runs on a fuel mix of 15 percent gas, 85 percent ethanol. "I just drove it here from ...

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Out Loud: October 26, 2007

"I wasn't there. I'm sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. I was tied up at the time."

Sen. John McCain, deriding Sen. Hillary Clinton for seeking $1 million for a museum dedicated to the Woodstock concert that occurred while McCain was a Vietnam POW in Hanoi

"Just look at what Osam, uh,

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Bubba Reveals 'Enduring Humiliation'

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If it seems like we're writing a lot about Bill Clinton's golf game, well, the chatty putter just won't stop talking about it.

You might recall that we recently wrote that Clinton pal Terry McAuliffe has been bragging about how he can now beat the ex-president on the links. Something about how ...

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TAGS:
Clinton, Bill
golf

Meet the Bobbles

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Welcome to our new Washington Whispers feature, Capitol Bobbles. (To view the bobble videos, click on the video player to the right.)

 

Yes, we're using bobbleheads to tell the political story of the day. We've got bobbles of the major presidential candidates (Sen. Hillary ...

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TAGS:
politics

And Now, the Real 2008 Debates

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They're a year away, but the upcoming 2008 presidential debates are drawing heated competition between cities and colleges eager to host one of the four planned events. Frank Fahrenkopf, cochair of the Commission on Presidential Debates, says that unlike in some past years, every region of the ...

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TAGS:
debates

Puerto Rico: the Democratic Star

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What's the easiest way for the Democrats to keep control of Congress? By giving Puerto Rico statehood. Under a plan now working through the House, the island territory could win two Senate and up to six House seats. Since the territory leans left, it only makes sense that the Democrats would score ...

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TAGS:
Puerto Rico
politics

A Stripper Scandal Avoided

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Let's start with the scene: an upstairs party room Tuesday night at Sonoma, one of Capitol Hill's hippest restaurants, where friends gathered to celebrate the publication of local writer Kelly DiNardo's new book about legendary striptease artist Lili St. Cyr. 

And along with the shrimp, open bar,

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TAGS:
politics

Countdown to Internet Taxes

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If you like getting on the Internet tax free, then you should be interested in this clock put up by Senate Republicans. It tells just how soon the Internet tax moratorium on access fees ends. Yes, the House OK'd a four-year extension this week, but there's trouble in the Senate, where some ...

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TAGS:
internet
taxes
Congress

Neil Cavuto as the 'Money Honey'

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When Fox Business Network debuts this week, don't look for a "Money Honey" like CNBC's Maria Bartiromo. "I don't like being in that sex symbol role, but I've got to be it," FBN chief Neil Cavuto says. "Actually, I'm the Benny Hill of the network," he adds. That won't be the only change. Cavuto says ...

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TAGS:
Fox Broadcasting Co.

Ford's Answer to Snarky Reporters

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His most famous boss has passed on, but former White House Press Secretary Ron Nessen is still hot under the collar about stories portraying President Ford as a bumbler and stumbler. Nessen says that the story line very likely started during a trip to Vienna. He recalls that Ford slipped on the ...

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TAGS:
Ford, Gerald
journalism

Boys of October Giving Way to 2008

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The coming end of the baseball season is sad for many but especially for hardball fans in the presidential election world where night broadcasts and box scores provide a little break from their 24-7 routine. "When you spend 14 or 15 hours a day talking and walking politics," says Republican Mitt ...

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TAGS:
baseball

A Higher Calling for Clinton's McCurry

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He made it big as White House spokesman for former President Bill Clinton, but now Mike McCurry is reaching for the proverbial mountaintop. The flack some consider among the best ever tells us that he's doing a little freebie work for the United Methodist Church. The project: "Nothing but Nets," a ...

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Old War Horses Team Up Again

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The duo who orchestrated the first Gulf War, former President George H.W. Bush and his national security adviser Brent Scowcroft, is once again on the same page. We're told that the November reopening of major new exhibits at Bush's presidential library and museum, closed in April for the $8.3 ...

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TAGS:
Bush, George H.W.
Texas A&M

First Pet Plays Secret Agent Man

Here's a little intelligence from the White House doghouse. First K-9 Barney has turned into such a snooping watchdog that aides to the president joke that his Scottie is on the security team. "He thinks he's part of the Secret Service," says a Bushie. Then there's first lady Laura Bush's younger ...

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TAGS:
pets
White House