I doubt this will bring any solace to Eliot Spitzer, but after his swearing in today, New York Governor David Paterson and his wife told the New York Daily News they each had had extra-marital affairs.
In a stunning revelation, both Paterson, 53, and his wife, Michelle, 46, acknowledged in a joint interview they each had intimate relationships with others during a rocky period in their marriage several years ago.
In the course of several interviews in the past few days, Paterson said he maintained a relationship for two or three years with "a woman other than my wife," beginning in 1999.
What prompted the interviews? Threats of exposure:
The First Couple agreed to speak publicly about the difficulties in their marriage in response to a variety of rumors about Paterson's personal life that have been circulating in Albany and among the press corps in recent days.
Paterson and his former paramour trysted at a Manhattan Days Inn Hotel.
Asked if he had stayed with anyone else since 2001 at the same West Side hotel, Paterson said, "From time to time I used to take Michelle to that hotel."
Cheney's in Baghdad! And death stalks Karbala.
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or, Sowing the Seeds of the Vast Left Wing ConspiracyDozens of progressive bloggers descended upon[...]
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Hillary Clinton today promised Puerto Ricans she would "would vigorously advance plans that would enable Puerto Rico to decide if it wants to remain a commonwealth or become a U.S. state or an independent nation."
Puerto Rico has been a commonwealth since 1952. Its residents are almost equally divided on whether it should change its status:
Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens but cannot vote for president, and their representation in Congress is restricted to a single nonvoting member. National party conventions provide islanders a rare chance to have a direct say in Washington.
Big Tent Democrat is the resident expert on Puerto Rico. I don't know his position on Puerto Rico's future.
I will mention that I began visiting Puerto Rico in high school. My parents moved to Puerto Rico when I started law school and I spent every school break there for three years. (They then moved to Florida and then to Denver.)
So I have very warm feelings for Puerto Rico and Puerto Ricans, and strongly believe they should be allowed to determine their own status.
Puerto Rico holds its primary on June 1. It will award 62 delegates, 7 of them superdelegates to the Democratic Convention.
In her campaign's Monday statement, Clinton also pledged to provide new tax benefits to create jobs in Puerto Rico, which is struggling through a second year of recession, and to return some federal land on the outlying island of Vieques to local residents.
Clinton was among several New York politicians who had been vocal supporters of halting military exercises in Vieques, which had provoked protests that contributed to the U.S. decision to end maneuvers in 2003.
I'm glad to see Hillary make this kind of promise to them. More on Hillary's new policy statement from the Wall St. Journal:
Today, Hillary Clinton released a policy agenda to put more policemen in Puerto Rico, bring universal health care to the island, create new jobs and work to have the federal government give up land on Vieques island, where the Navy formerly operated a bombing range. Her plan today is also designed to lift the cap on Medicaid there, and to extend President Bush’s latest budget proposal to include aid to Puerto Ricans.
“As first lady and senator from New York—with a million constituents of Puerto Rican origin and people moving back and forth—she has worked closely with Puerto Rican leaders,” the campaign said in a statement.
Hillary is favored to win Puerto Rico. I think her new policy agenda is another sign she has no intention of abandoning her campaign.
copyright ? 2008 Betsy L. Angert. BeThink.org
It is another dark day in the Sunshine State. Votes, voters, and opportunities are lost. Some who wish for a Barack Obama win work to see the light. Those who would prefer Hillary Clinton receive her coronation, want her to claim the Oval Office and her Florida delegates. No once can be certain, which would be better, a second primary or a first election that counted. However, we can all agree, in Florida, elections are rarely effective. Butterfly ballots cause confusion. Chads that hang hamper an accurate assessment. The people's preference in The Everglade State seems to be eternally unknown.
While many Floridians may argue, the system in The Alligator State works; it is the snafu's that fail us, as one who voted in others states, I must submit, I have never witnessed such a flawed process, or the degree of derision among the electorate that I experience here in The Gulf State. If a ballot is not lost in the Ethernet, it is misplaced in a myriad of mishaps.
The inadequacy of the approach may not be apparent to those who have voted in Florida and nowhere else, or to those who perhaps, lived in other territories where the logistics are equally limited. I know not. I only experience, that for me, the availability of accurate information on the election, candidate statements, sample ballots, well designed ballots, and pamphlets that describe every aspect of the election in depth and detail, is scant.
While some may muse the fact that long after I forfeited my vote in California, I continued to receive volumes of election literature is evidence of a failure to update a database, I consider the desire to enlighten admirable.
Little is lost when information is abundant. Less is vanquished when citizens are conversant.
I recall the date that I signed a form, and verified for the Registrar of Voters that indeed, I left the Golden State for good. On that day, I felt a loss for what I could not explain and now do. The title of the treatise penned on that inauspicious occasion seems more apt today. A Religious California Voter Loses Her Right to cast a ballot in California or count, as a constituent, in Florida.
For in The Orange State ballots are dubious, and bureaucrats are duplicitous. The visible disdain for an exact tally, or the evidence of deceit, may be more cryptic. Consider Republican Governor, Charlie Crist. The man who intentionally changed the date of the primary election, with full knowledge of the consequence, publicly advocates for the Democratic delegates on Cable News Network. The incongruity or insincerity escapes no one. Crist, who understood the Democratic National Committee would not seat representatives for the Progressive Party if he did this smiles and states . . .
I think it's very important . . . that those delegates are seated. And I'm hopeful that the national Democratic Party, the Democratic National Committee, comes to the conclusion it's the right thing to do. Every vote must count.
Perchance, the more subtle stance, or scorn, is the statement made by Congresswoman Karen L. Thurman?, Chair, Florida Democratic Party. We cannot be certain whether the Representative supports Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, or the voters. Nonetheless, we can sense the terseness in her message. Perchance, Karen Thurman feels her vote was lost and so was her chance to make her preference known.
Who can blame her. I too want my vote to count; although I did not have faith that it would have even if Floridians voted again. .I offer the full text of Congresswoman Thurman's assertion, and ask you to review the reflection. Evaluate for yourself. Then decide. What might a Democrat in Florida do?
Dear Florida Democrat . . .
For a year now, the Florida Democratic Party has tried to comply with the Delegate Selection Rules of the Democratic National Committee.
We researched every potential alternative process - from caucuses to county conventions to mail-in elections - but no plan could come anywhere close to being viable in Florida.
We made a detailed case to the DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee, but we were denied.
Our Democratic legislators in Tallahassee tried to set the Florida primary on Feb. 5, instead of Jan. 29, but of course, their proposed amendment to House Bill 537 was greeted with laughter and derision from the Republicans who control the state government.
Does '537' ring a bell? It should. It's the number of votes that separated Texas Gov. George W. Bush and Vice President Al Gore in Florida in 2000.
It's the number that sent this country and this world in a terrible direction.
We can't let 537 - or the Republicans - determine our future again.
President Bush plans to stop in Florida tomorrow to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Republican National Committee's efforts to elect his successor in November.
The last thing America needs is a third Bush term. Despite the widespread anxiety that working families feel, not to mention the broad agreement among economists that we are in a recession, President Bush and John McCain blindly believe that the economy is strong.
And let me remind you that John McCain endorsed President Bush's decision to deny health care to thousands of Florida children by vetoing an expansion of the successful SCHIP program. McCain also promises to jeopardize the financial security of Florida seniors by privatizing Social Security. He continually threatens to push Florida's military families to the brink by keeping American troops in Iraq for "100 years" or more.
This is why we are Democrats, and this is why we must stick together, no matter where this ongoing delegate debate takes us.
Last week, the Florida Democratic Party laid out the only existing way that we can comply with DNC Rules - a statewide revote run by the Party - and asked for input.
Thousands of people responded. We spent the weekend reviewing your messages, and while your reasons vary widely, the consensus is clear: Florida doesn't want to vote again.
So we won't.
A party-run primary or caucus has been ruled out, and it's simply not possible for the state to hold another election, even if the Party were to pay for it. Republican Speaker of the Florida House Marco Rubio refuses to even consider that option. Florida is finally moving to paper ballots, which is a good thing, but it means that at least 15 counties do not have the capacity to handle a major election before the June 10th DNC primary deadline.
This doesn't mean that Democrats are giving up on Florida voters. It means that a solution will have to come from the DNC Rules & Bylaws Committee, which is scheduled to meet again in April.
When this committee stripped us of 100% of our delegates last year, some members summed up their reasoning by saying, "The rules are the rules." Unfortunately, the rules did not apply to Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina when they, too, violated the DNC calendar by moving from their assigned dates.
As the late great Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, "We must adjust our ideas to the facts of today. . . Rules are not necessarily sacred, principles are."
The Florida Democratic Party has stuck to its principles throughout this debate. We've remained open-minded while never wavering from our commitment to an open and fair election that would allow all Florida Democrats to participate, whether serving in Iraq, retiring in Boca, studying abroad or entertaining at a theme park.
Another late great President Abraham Lincoln, a Republican, said, "A house divided against itself cannot stand."
If Democrats heed this wisdom, we will win in November.
America needs a great president again, but a President McCain will settle for the status quo and carry on the disastrous Bush tradition.
President Clinton or President Obama will make history and lead this nation in a new direction.
Let's remember this as the delegate debate continues. We must stick together as Democrats. The stakes are too high and the opportunities too great.
I will keep you posted on any major developments. Thank you for your concern and your commitment.
Congresswoman Karen L. Thurman?
Chair, Florida Democratic Party
As a resident of The Flower State I long to say I, an American. I saw my ballot bloom into a significant statement. I yearn to be part of the political process. However, unlike those in other regions, I cannot make this claim. I can only cry out, and sing. They lost my vote.
As a forlorn Floridian I must declare, if there is a new direction to be had, I would hope it would begin in Florida, the state that has drifted for too long. No one can forget the number of Florida voters disenfranchised on January 29, 2008.
At least one Orange County voter was turned away from the polls after a pollworker said the Democratic primary was in March and there are reports of long lines at Century Village, a large retirement community in Broward, despite an unusually short ballot.
Early morning - Broward County
Dan Seligson, electionline.org
"They don't know how to get this machine to work. Do you know how to do it?" - Toni, poll worker, Broward County voting precinct.
Never a good sign when seven poll workers look to an observer to fix an electronic polling book. Yet by 7:10 a.m. - just minutes after the polling place had opened, the machine installed to help with the registration process by verifying signatures and identifying appropriate ballots had stymied election workers and voters in at least two Broward County precincts.
The number of ballots botched in this primary or that general election is a total beyond our grasp. Floridians cannot retrieve what was lost before it was realized. Apparently, in 2008, the Democratic Presidential aspirants will not salvage any perceived or hoped for success either.
Please my fellow Floridians, before November 2008, let us join together with one goal in mind. May we please work to participate fully. Might we consider what it would mean to be part of the Union. Let us not bicker amongst ourselves. This situation is not deplorable for Hillary Clinton. Nor is it a victory for Barack Obama. With the roles reversed, the results would be the same. Florida voters suffer. Our votes are too frequently lost.
Please may we, in The Peninsula State prepare for the next election now.
May Election Boards deliver all the necessary data so that voters can make an informed decision. Might the machines be manned or the papers be processed. May Floridians stand united. Divided as residents of this State are, it is no wonder Florida's reputation, fragile as it was, has fallen. Citizens in this Southern State cannot, have not, contributed to what counts most in America, the democratic process. Let us and our votes no longer be lost. Can we croon a new tune; my Florida vote counts.
Sources for The Sunshine State . . .
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Sure. Because he has such a long history of promoting violence, unlike the Chinese government who have never been known to use excessive force against its population. And because the Chinese government has always been so open about letting the people of Tibet live with their local culture. If China thinks this is difficult, wait until their own bubble bursts. Then they're really going to have trouble. The government has always been a bunch of bullies and while they may dress better today than 40 years ago, they're still just bullies.