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Washington Whispers

December 2007


American Idol-Mania Hits Clinton Country

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ILLUSTRATION BY JOE CIARDIELLO FOR USN&WRPatrick Kennedy had never watched the Fox TV hit American Idol when he began preparing the first issue of Frank, the Clinton School of Public Service's new magazine. But the editor figured show cofounder Simon Cowell would be just the right newsmaker ...

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What Tops NASA? Keeping LSU's Miles

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Sean O'Keefe's résumé screams Mr. Fix-It. As Navy secretary, he worked on military treaties and had to right the Tailhook scandal. As NASA chief, he put the agency back into space after the Columbia disintegration. So when he took over as chancellor at Louisiana State University in ...

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A Rudy-Haley Ticket in Play

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A potential presidential teaming could lead to the sharpest-ever clash in the White House: a clash of accents, that is. Political allies of former Big Apple Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour are actively pushing the two together, with the 9/11 mayor and New Yawker on top of a ...

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Idea of the Week: Town Insurance

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It's a familiar story. A locality's main employer shuts down, and Main Street becomes a ghost town. With the tax base decimated, schools rot, roads crumble, and potential employers turn their nose up at moving there. Current economic uncertainties have many towns facing this. But now we hear that ...

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Grill Sergeants Take On Iron Chef TV

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Look out, Bobby Flay, Mario Batali, and all your Iron Chef teammates. The Pentagon is creating its own TV food show, and these chefs pack heat. It's called the Grill Sergeants and debuts on the agency's TV channel this month. Viewers will see several drill sergeants chosen to host the program serve ...

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Charity's Bells Ring for CNN's Crowley

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Christmas tradition means a lot for CNN's Candy Crowley, even if it is costing her an arm and a leg. It all started with her father, who died some 20 years ago. Seems he never passed a Salvation Army red bucket without tossing in a quarter or more. "To this day, I reach for my wallet when I hear ...

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Out Loud: December 13, 2007

"I didn't get the bug. I can't wait to go home."

Oprah Winfrey, asked if campaigning with Sen. Barack Obama made her want to run for office

"It'll be, 'When was the last time? Did you ever give drugs to anyone? Did you sell them to anyone?' "

Bill Shaheen, Sen. Hillary Clinton's campaign cochair,

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Another Weapon in the Malaria War

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Corrected 12/12/2007: An earlier version of this story stated that first lady Laura Bush is expanding the administration's war on malaria by helping the group Malaria No More, which supplies African families with nets to ward off insects. While the first lady is working with Malaria No More, she is ...

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TAGS:
malaria
Bush, Laura

Laura Bush Is Also the First Lady of Christmas

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ILLUSTRATION BY JOE CIARDIELLO FOR USN&WRIt would be understandable if, after planning six extravagant Christmases at the White House, during which she's posed for some 120,000 pictures with her hubby, first lady Laura Bush were a little tired of the whole affair. But in her seventh year of ...

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Jailed Lobbyist Settles Into Prison

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After a little more than a year in prison, defrocked K Street lobbyist Jack Abramoff appears to be settling into his cramped, no-frills lifestyle. Sources with inside info report that the lobbyist who once plied lawmakers with goodies has acclimated to life inside a minimum-security Maryland prison ...

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Having Oprah Is Better Than Babs

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Pollsters tell us that celebrity endorsements rarely do much for presidential candidates. But John Zogby says that Oprah Winfrey's backing of Sen. Barack Obama is much different. "Generally, they don't help," he says of celebs. "This is a sort of different thing with Oprah," adds Zogby, "because ...

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Democrats Saw a Huckabee Surge

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Nearly a year before former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee blasted onto the national stage by leading some polls in the Iowa Republican presidential caucus, one office in Washington can claim that it saw him coming and began preparing for it. "Our former research director Devorah Adler and I were ...

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History Says Pick Clinton, Thompson

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If history matters to you, then voters should pick Democratic Sen. Hillary Clinton and Republican Fred Thompson as their parties' presidential nominees. That's because they are the choice of America's social studies teachers. In a miniconvention sponsored by Pearson, the education and media giant,

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What a Dream: Help for Military Troops

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It owns several condo developments around the country that are popular with military personnel, so Athena Group's Sales and Marketing Director Harry Dubin thought it would be nice to gin up an idea to pay the troops back. He went to bed thinking about it, and the idea came to him in a dream: Waive ...

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No 'Trophies' in Bush Wine Cellar

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It may not sound like a lot of money to oenophiles, but the $135 Peter Michael Les Pavots that White House Food and Beverage Manager Daniel Shanks likes to serve at formal affairs is about as high as he'll go for a bottle. As Shanks explains in the upcoming issue of White House History, he tries to ...

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TAGS:
food and drink

Out Loud: December 6, 2007

"Dick Cheney is still a war criminal. Hillary Clinton is still Satan. And I'm back on the radio."

Don Imus, on his return to radio as a talk show host following his dismissal from CBS for disparaging remarks about the Rutgers women's basketball team

"How did running for president become a ...

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