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Power Corrupts

Here's What's Left I wish this were a joke: House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert is leaning toward removing the House ethics committee chairman, who admo

Here's What's Left

I wish this were a joke:

House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert is leaning toward removing the House ethics committee chairman, who admonished House Majority Leader Tom DeLay this fall and has said he will treat DeLay like any other member, several Republican aides said yesterday. Although Hastert (Ill.) has not made a decision, the expectation among leadership aides is that the chairman, Rep. Joel Hefley (R-Colo.), long at odds with party leaders because of his independence, will be replaced when Congress convenes next week.

This would be funny if it were in an Orwell novel, but it's not. Ya know what's even less funny? Who his replacement will be:

The aides said a likely replacement is Rep. Lamar S. Smith More...

Lobbying Report.... Political Moneyline has just issued its first lobbying report for 2004 and reports that total spending for the first six months of the year was $1.06 billion, an increase of 38% since 2000. Obviously these guys are having no problem keeping up with inflation. Three of the top ten spenders (GE, Freddie Mac, and Philip Morris) appear to be garden variety corporate lobbyists. Among the other seven, though, you'll note the dead absence of anything resembling a liberal cause. In fact, unless I miss my guess, five of the seven are united in whole or part by a single topic: tort reform. No wonder it's at the top of George Bush's agenda this year. More....

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