The erstwhile CNN-YouTube debate certainly helped keep my attention, with its viewer-generated questions--although I don't know how I managed to miss the gun-totin' gent waving his metallic "baby" about! The big letdown was the host's (mediator?) softball approach, which made the "debate" fuzzier than necessary. In any case, I have a feeling that the Republicans' turn under the YouTube spotlight in September will be unintentially hilarious, uncomfortable, and revealing.
What in the ???
In case you've been Rip Van Winkle and need confirmation of the importance of the upcoming Presidential election, think about this: Have you ever heard of a sitting member of Congress, especially a senior member of the House Homeland Security Committee, being denied access, by the White House, to classified material concerning government plans in case of a terrorist attack? It's not a joke--it recently happened to Rep. Peter DeFazio (D) of Oregon. This situation is triply ridiculous, as he was recently tapped by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to help negotiate an anti-terrorism bill!
How can a President denying access to a member of Congress, to government plans in case of a terrorist attack, be good for the country? Of course, this is just another episode of the unhealthy obstinance, arrogance, and obstructionism that President Bush pummels and promulgates at every turn. The 2008 election can't come soon enough!
Yes, Your Vote Does Count...
Another reason that it's important who's in the White House and the Congress is the upcoming (today! right now!) vote on the Hill for DC's right to vote. A bill that would give DC's 600,000 residents their first voting Representative is up for vote, and this time, the votes needed are within reach! It's about time, as DC residents pay enough federal taxes and have troops sent overseas, currently without any say in the matter. (However, why not go all the way and present a bill that would also provide DC with two voting Senators? Well, one can dream... I would really be dreaming if any Republican presidential candidates were in favor of DC having a vote in Congress--Jack Kemp, who was at a recent DC voting rights march, comes to mind. Oops, he's not in the current Republican crop! Never mind!)