That's a headline you don't see every day, but then again, there's no lack of irony in the way Democratics are handling their new budget power on Capital Hill. Is the incoming Senate appropriations czar, Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia, really vowing to do away with earmarks? Give me a break. In the last 15 years, a fraction of his 47-year Senate career, Byrd has secured some $3 billion in earmarks for his home state. They don't call him the "king of pork" because he likes ham sandwiches.
Unless something changes, bridges and research labs in West Virginia won't be the only victims of the democrats impending reign. Also at risk is the $1 billion in planned 2007 federal funding for the fight against global poverty, AIDS, and malaria.
Rocker-activist Bono was on the Hill last week trying to get assurances from soon-to-be- Majority Leader Harry Reid that the funding would stay in place regardless of how the silly politics of budgeting plays out. Apparently, the meeting did not go so well. Bono had this to say:
I'm alarmed we could not get a commitment from the Democratic leadership to prevent the loss of $1 billion in the continuing resolution to fight AIDS, malaria and extreme poverty.... I don't know who's to blame. Democrats are blaming Republicans, Republicans are blaming Democrats. But the million people who were expecting bed nets don't care who's to blame. They just know that a promise made by the United States to keep their families safe is in danger of being broken next year.
One of the few positive foreign policy legacies of the Bush Administration will be its committment of tens of billions of dollars to the global fight against AIDS and poverty. It's a sad comment on the state of Congress that, under the leadership of the "liberal" democrats, this funding could fall victim to petty politics.
All of you out there obsessed with 2008 know that there's been some rampant speculation about when Barack Obama's first major political gaffe is going to hit the wires and take a little bit of the freshman senator's sheen away. Well, it may have just happened. Here's the story:
Tony Rezko, a Chicago political insider indicted this year on influence-peddling (charges unrelated to Obama), sold the senator a sliver of yard adjacent to his South Side home in June 2005.
After news of the deal broke last month in the Chicago Tribune, Obama said he had erred by creating the appearance that Rezko had done him a favor by selling him a portion of the lot....
"There's no doubt that this was a mistake on my part. 'Boneheaded' would be accurate," Obama said in a telephone interview Friday. "There's no doubt I should have seen some red flags in terms of me purchasing a piece of property from him."
Obama recently donated to charity $11,500 that Rezko had contributed to his federal campaign account.
I will say this: If this minor hiccup is the worst the senator has to offer, get those Obama '08 shirts ready.
If anyone is aghast that Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert let slip the worst kept secret in international affairs - that Israel is a nuclear state - perhaps they should turn their sights on another blabbermouth: Bob Gates. During Gates's Senate Armed Services Committee confirmation hearing last Tuesday, the nominee to replace Donald Rumsfeld as SecDef also let the "secret" slip:
SEN. GRAHAM: The president of Iran has publicly disavowed the existence of the Holocaust, he has publicly stated that he would like to wipe Israel off the map. Do you think he's kidding?
MR. GATES: No, I don't think he's kidding. And -- but I think that there are, in fact, higher powers in Iran than he, than the president. And I think that while they are certainly pressing, in my opinion, for a nuclear capability, I think that they would see it in the first instance as a deterrent. They are surrounded by powers with nuclear weapons -- Pakistan to their east, the Russians to the north, the Israelis to the west, and us in the Persian Gulf --
From Bob Gates's 1991 10-day confirmation hearing for CIA director:
SEN. METZENBAUM: You weren't at all concerned in your role as to the integrity of the agency, knowing that the impropriety of this act, knowing it violated American laws.
MR. GATES: Well, sir, I didn't have any indication that the action was a violation of the law.
SEN METZENBAUM:[...] The question we have to decide in our own mind is if he didn't see the wrong in yesteryear, if he didn't protest when he was in a position to protest, if he didn't raise issues when he could have raised issues, if he didn't report to the Congress when he should have reported to the Congress, what is the magical transformation that has taken place in Robert Gates when he comes before us today, yesterday, and the next several days for confirmation that makes that Robert Gates a different person than the one who didn't meet those same responsibilities in yesteryear? [...] It's a difficult question for us to decide.
From Bob Gates's 2006 confirmation hearing for secretary of defense:
Alex Wong/Getty Images
SEN. THUNE: Dr. Gates, I want to congratulate you on a very successful tenure as president of Texas A&M, culminating with the win over Texas in the football game this year. I'm sure your performance in that job is probably measured more by the battle for football supremacy in Texas than just about anything else, and something that my colleagues from Texas no doubt will want to stay out of, I'm quite guessing.
At Gates's Senate confirmation hearing today:
We are not winning the war in Iraq, is that correct?" Mr. McCain asked.
"That is my view, yes, senator," Mr. Gates replied, adding shortly afterward that the United States is not losing the war either.
A few days ago, the U.N. General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to urge America to end its nearly 50-year economic embargo of Cuba. Naysayers can be forgiven for pooh-poohing the vote. After all, the resolution was non-binding and it was the 15th straight year that it had been passed.
The U.S. mission at the United Nations responded with Foggy Bottom's usual Cuba rhetoric:
We maintain this embargo to demonstrate our continuing call for economic and political freedom for all Cubans," U.S. envoy Ronald Godard said.
But word is floating around Capitol Hill that, when the Democrats take charge in January, the Cuban embargo may be on the chopping block. Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), the incoming chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has said the embargo is a "total failure." In the House, Charlie Rangel (D-NY), who is set to become chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committee, has in the past sponsored legislation to end the embargo.
Any change in Cuba policy, of course, would require the signature of President Bush. That's hardly a guarantee. But embargo foes must be taking comfort in the fact that Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is stepping down in January. That may give his brother a little more wiggle room, should he desire it.
When it comes to Rep.-elect Keith Ellison of Minnesota, CNN Headline News host Glenn Beck just isn't sure. That's because Ellison is Muslim, which Beck said made him "nervous." Interviewing Ellison on Tuesday, Beck said he felt like questioning Ellison's loyalty to America. Then he said Ellison "could be" a shining example to European countries that are struggling with multiculturalism.
Seriously, this is why I refuse to watch CNN Headline News, which has the most thoughtless programming of any 24-hour news network. Here's a news flash for Glenn Beck and CNN producers: Not all Midwesterners are white. And they're not all Christian, either. Also, you might try learning a thing or two about a congressman-elect before you interview him. Ellison was born in Detroit, not Mogadishu. He hasn't "integrated" into America -- he was born here.
Here's the exchange:
BECK: [M]ay we have five minutes here where we're just politically incorrect and I play the cards face up on the table?
ELLISON: Go there.
BECK: OK. No offense, and I know Muslims. I like Muslims. I've been to mosques. I really don't believe that Islam is a religion of evil.... With that being said, you are a Democrat ... what I feel like saying is, 'Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies.' And I know you're not. I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans will feel that way.
ELLISON: Well, let me tell you, the people of the Fifth Congressional District know that I have a deep love and affection for my country. There's no one who is more patriotic than I am. And so, you know, I don't need to -- need to prove my patriotic stripes.
BECK: I understand that. And I'm not asking you to.... And I think it's wonderful, honestly, I think it is really a good sign that you are a -- you could be an icon to show Europe, this is the way you integrate into a country.
Hat tip: Media Matters
Jai rightly flagged this story in the Morning Brief today as perhaps the most significant news of the day. Just a day after sitting down for an interview with the Iraq Study Group, the bipartisan commission tasked with charting a new course for the U.S. in Iraq, President Bush has announced his own, hastily-thrown-together review. The new internal review is set to present its findings at just about the same time the Iraq Study Group plans to reveal its recommendations next month. Money quote:
[T]he administration is basically trying to do in one month what the ISG has done over eight months.
In other words, Bush needs some recommendations that he wants to hear.
In the Weekly Standard, military historian Frederick Kagan punches some holes in the notion that America could move its forces to Kurdistan or Kuwait and still play an effective role in Iraq.
Over-the-horizon quick-reaction forces are simply a fantasy. We will not end up using them for all of the reasons given above and for one more: They will put our soldiers at far greater risk than they now face.
The piece is worth a close read; it's part of the nuts-and-bolts debate we need now. The election is over, so we can get beyond tired catch phrases and code words.
Yesterday, after it had released its official list of meetings, the Iraq Study Group did finally seek the opinions of Bill Clinton, Warren Christopher, Richard Holbrooke, and other foreign-policy hands whom I criticized them for ignoring. The group included Madeleine Albright, who apparently phoned in for five minutes or so from Minneapolis where she was giving a no doubt high-dollar speech. (No worries Madame Secretary, there are only thousands of lives at stake.) Yet, glaring omissions remain. Why, for instance, would the group not meet with Bush 41, a former president who not only ran the CIA but also won a war in the Middle East?
A quick look at the list seems, sadly, to validate the conclusion reached by Michael Kinsley in today's WaPo that those hoping that the commission will come up with some creative, miracle solution to the mess in Iraq are likely to be severely disappointed. In fact, aside from a few Iraqi government officials and Pentagon generals, it doesn't appear that the commission has spoken with anyone whose views are not widely available in the op-ed pages of the New York Times and Washington Post.
The list is notable for its exceptions. Here's who you will NOT find on the list:
1. Amb. Zalmay Khalilzad, perhaps the one U.S. official who has addressed the Iraq debacle with some candor and foresight -- and certainly the one official history will look kindly upon.
2. John McCain, Chuck Hagel, and John Kerry, three of the U.S. Senate's most notable veterans of combat. This one is mind blowing.
3. Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle, two key architects of the war, one a former dean of one of the most prestigious IR schools in the country.
4. Madeleine Albright and Warren Christopher. The views of Team Clinton don't appear very welcome.
5. Henry Kissinger, the dean of the foreign-policy establishment.
6. George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton. The former commanders in chief (one of whom actually won a war and flew 58 combat missions in WWII) remain on the sidelines.
7. Fouad Ajami,
Shibley Telhami, Bernard Lewis, Ray Takeyh, Kanan Makiya, and other notable scholars on the Middle East. This commission appears as isolated from the academy as the Bush administration is. [Thanks to a Passport reader for pointing out that Telhami is, in fact, a member of one of the ISG's working groups.]
Three people who did make the list: Bill Kristol, George Will, and Thomas Friedman.
From President Bush's radio address this weekend:
One freedom that defines our way of life is the freedom to choose our leaders at the ballot box. We saw that freedom earlier this week, when millions of Americans went to the polls to cast their votes for a new Congress. Whatever your opinion of the outcome, all Americans can take pride in the example our democracy sets for the world by holding elections even in a time of war.
Hat tip: Huffington Post
Now that the Democrats control both the Senate and the House, they're set to take over powerful congressional committees - and that has the Bush administration nervous about investigations into the management of the Iraq war, intelligence failures, and the fiasco that was Hurricane Katrina. So, who are a few of the new chairmen and what will be at the top of their agenda? The WSJ has a nice write-up, as does the BBC, and the WaPo devoted a spread today. Here's a brief breakdown of a few of the changes.
Senate Intelligence Committee: Jay Rockefeller (WV) wants to investigate the White House's case for invading Iraq.
Senate Subcommittee on Investigations: Carl Levin (MI) promises to look into no-bid contracts in Iraq, and as likely chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, may call for a reduction of U.S. troops there.
Senate Appropriations Committee: Expect Robert Byrd (WV) to balk at more emergency spending bills for the military.
House Foreign Relations Committee: Tom Lantos (CA) wants to push for talks with North Korea and Iran.
House Ways and Means Committee: Charles Rangel (NY) wants more labor and environmental standards in trade agreements and fewer tax incentives for companies that send jobs overseas.
House Committee on Homeland Security: Bennie Thompson (MS) wants to question Michael Chertoff about the lack of reconstruction progress since Hurricane Katrina.
House Government Reform Committee: Henry Waxman (CA) wants to investigate Halliburton's work in Iraq and oil-company profits.
House Judiciary Committee: John Conyers (MI) may reopen debate over military tribunals and warrantless wiretapping.
Democrats: Eager to bring accountability back into government? Here's a suggestion. Find out what happened to the nearly $9 billion dollars of Iraqi oil funds and reconstruction cash missing in action since the beginning of the war.
In the aftermath of the invasion, planes filled with shrink-wrapped bundles of $100 bills were flown into Baghdad. Wondering how much money fits into a plane? "It was $2 billion a flight, and I know of at least six flights," Stuart Bowen, special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, told the BBC. Waiting at the airport for the planeloads of greenbacks was David Oliver. Head of the CPA's finance department, he handed much of this money over to the Iraqi provisional government. After that the paper trail grows colder. According to Mr. Bowen, some it found its way into the pockets of Iraqi politicians.
When asked by a reporter where the money went, Oliver replied he didn't know and didn't care. "Billions of dollars of their money disappeared, yes I understand, I'm saying what difference does it make?" In his defense, Oliver insists there were unexpected and pressing emergencies in the war's aftermath, with little time for accounting procedures. But early warnings had been issued by groups like Iraq Revenue Watch about the potential for mismangement and corruption. These were ignored.
For more on the incompetence and mismanagement of postwar Iraq, check out Rajiv Chandrasekaran's must-read "Who Killed Iraq?" in the last issue of FP.
If you're anything like us, you've been glued to your computer and television for poll results, press conferences, and high-level resignations for several days now. What a convenient time to release bad news or sweep unfortunate events under the rug. Here's some of what you missed when you were watching Anderson Cooper and Chris Matthews:
-Russia decided to weaken proposed sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program.
-Israeli bombs kill 20 in the Gaza town of Beit Hanun. Israel defends the action, calling it "preventative." Hamas calls off the cease-fire.
-The European Union puts Turkey on notice for human rights issues and its role in Cyprus or risk ending accession talks.
-The UN adopted a resolution condemning the U.S. embargo of Cuba.
Ok, there's no evidence whatsoever that any of this is tied to midterm elections in America. In fact, it's probably not. But with campaign season finally over on the Hill and issues from Iranian nukes to Iraqi security on the agenda, it's time for congress to get back to work.
It may not be popular with the public. It doesn't matter...."
That was Vice President Dick Cheney speaking about the Iraq war on Sunday. Everyone is interpreting the Rumsfeld firing as a sign that the Bush administration has - overnight - come to the realization that its policy in Iraq has failed and that, all of the sudden, public opinion matters.
Don't count on it. Despite last night's returns, there's no evidence that suggests the Bush administration is not still hopelessly isolated on Iraq. All one had to do was listen the Bush-Rumsfeld-Gates presser minutes ago when Rummy described Iraq as a "little understood" war that is "not well known" and "not well understood." Translation: The American people are dumb.
That's been a guiding principle of Bush's Iraq strategy all along. Relax, the American public has been told, we know what we are doing. They may have offered up Rummy as a sacrificial lamb, but something makes me doubt that the president and vice president woke up this morning suddenly believing the American people are more wise than they.
We'll know just how "changed" the Bush administration now is when Gates's confirmation hearings begin. Like Condi, Gates is an old-school cold warrior and a Soviet specialist. The question is whether he still believes in proven bedrocks of American foreign policy such as containment, or whether, like Condi, he believes that 9/11 was a paradigm shift that has rendered those bedrock principles obsolete. Stay tuned.
The President today declared a major disaster exists in the State of Missouri and ordered Federal aid to supplement State and local recovery efforts in the area struck by severe storms during the period of July 19-21, 2006.”
As The Note notes its, "Interesting timing to declare federal aid on its way to the Show-Me State just as the President plans a day of campaigning there." Don't rule out federal assistance for the New Madrid earthquake before Tuesday. That happened in 1812, but, hey, better late than never.
If the Democrats take control of Congress in November, do you think the threat of terrorism against the United States would increase, decrease, or stay about the same?
Increase Decrease Same DK/NA 22 18 57 2
If the Republicans keep control of Congress in November, do you think the threat of terrorism against the United States would increase, decrease, or stay about the same?
Increase Decrease Same DK/NA 27 14 57 2
If the Rove and Mehlman machine can make the Republicans survive this election, it really does deserve its status as Washington's favorite caveat.
That's right. The U.S. Air Force apparently needs a staggering $50 billion in emergency funds for the next fiscal year - about half its annual budget. From Reuters:
[A] source familiar with the Air Force plans said the extra funds would help pay to transport growing numbers of U.S. soldiers being killed and wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"This amount of money is so much bigger than the Air Force would normally request ... it hints at a basic breakdown in the process for planning and funding war costs," said [defense analyst Loren] Thompson.
Hat tip: Wonkette
There are just a few days left in one of the tightest U.S. Congressional elections in recent memory. With foreign-policy issues at the forefront of voters' minds, this week's List takes a look at where the people asking for votes actually stand on issues of vital importance to American foreign policy. From Iraq to immigration to trade, this is how the candidates stack up.
Plus, don't miss the Web Exclusive on ForeignPolicy.com where FP's editors canvass some of the leading political journalists, policy experts, and Washington insiders for a look at how American foreign policy would change if the Democrats were to take Congress. With so much at stake on November 7, it's worth a read.
That noise you just heard is Karl Rove's reaction to John Kerry saying:
You know education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework, and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. And if you don't you get stuck in Iraq."
It is the kind of quote that the Republican machine feeds on. Personally, I buy Kerry's explanation that he was trying to insult Bush's intellect - not that of the troops. Any politician knows that bashing the men and women who serve is the dumbest thing a politician can do and Kerry himself is a veteran. Kerry also seems slightly obsessed with the question of whether he or Bush is smarter. Indeed, one can't help but wonder if he didn't release his Navy records during the campaign because they revealed that he actually got slightly worse grades at Yale than Bush did.
Nevertheless, the Republicans are going to run with this: note McCain's demand for an apology. Today there must be even fewer Democrats keen on Kerry '08.
President Bush says that if Democrats take over one or both houses of Congress on Nov. 7, "the terrorists win and America loses." In other words, if the Democrats win, they will pull out of Iraq and Al Qaeda will declare victory. But would Al Qaeda really consider it a victory if the U.S. withdrew its forces from Iraq? Or is the Al Qaeda cause better served by keeping U.S. forces tied down in a deadly guerilla war in the heart of the Middle East?
If the Democrats win, they will have to live up to their campaign promises and increase the pressure to withdraw. Even if the Republicans win, the pressure from the American street towards withdrawal is strong on them as well.
This poses a problem for al-Qaeda, since keeping America in Iraq has been so central to its strategy. If al-Qaeda believes that this stage has accomplished its goals, then the author thinks that it will permit the withdrawal and then reap its gains. But the author says that in his personal opinion, the time for the next stage has not yet arrived, and it would be better to keep the stage of America's being stuck in Iraq extended as long as possible. Even if America has suffered many losses, he argues, it remains very powerful and would only take a couple of years to recover from Iraq and return to the field of play. The author fears that al-Qaeda's leaders will fall prey to the temptation to move on to the next stage too early, and not intervene to keep the Republicans in power and the Americans in Iraq.
Therefore, while the author does not know what al-Qaeda wil do, he thinks that al-Qaeda should seek to delay the American withdrawal as long as possible by working to ensure that Bush and the Republican Party win the coming elections."
The several St. Louisans in the office are distressed by the news that the World Series is set to be delayed by rain - again. But the weather could be changing political history as well as baseball history.
In Missouri, there's a proposition on the ballot about stem cell research, and it is spilling over into the fiercely contested and crucial Senate contest there. Democratic candidate Claire McCaskill had Michael J. Fox cut an ad in support of stem cell research for her. The anti-proposition forces are now going head to head with McCaskill with an ad involving Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan, the actor who played Jesus in the Passion of the Christ, and various other celebs. The ad was meant to air last night, but didn't because the game was rained out.
I have a hunch that this delay is benefiting the anti-proposition side as the ad is getting a ton of free media. It got some play on the Today show this morning. More rain tonight might allow the "no" side to steal another base.
For a more substantial take on the stem cell question, read this Robert Paarlberg piece.
What is Rob Portman talking about? In an interview today with the Financial Times, the White House budget director warns that if the Dems win Congress on November 7, the U.S. will enter a new era of irresponsible government spending. That's right. Ignore the fact that federal spending has skyrocketed under Bush, with the sharpest growth per household in decades. Portman goes on to specifically accuse the Democrats of pushing for higher spending on non-defense discretionary expenditures. Huh. Perhaps he should have a look at this chart, where - again - non-defense discretionary spending has grown sharply in the past few years - under the Republicans. I know it's just electioneering as usual, but how misleading is to try to spur supporters to the polls by accusing your opponents of the deeds of which you are most guilty?
Washington is in full election countdown mode. Every new set of polls is anticipated with the same eagerness reserved for JK Rowling's latest offering. On that front, today is a comparatively good day for the Republicans. New polls show them up in two of the three crucial Senate races. (The fact that these contests are in Tennessee, Missouri, and Virginia demonstrates that this isn't the best of times for the GOP.)
Members of the party hierarchy are doing all they can to gin up the base with events like yesterday's talk radio bonanza at the White House and Bush's presser this morning. They're also hoping that the New Jersey Supreme Court might just lend them a hand.
It is clear that a major plank of the Republican get-out-the-vote strategy is to tap into irritation at the idea that the results are a foregone conclusion - hence Bush's oft-repeated line today about "people dancing in the end zone in DC, measuring their drapes." Meanwhile, Karl Rove is happily telling reporters that their polls are wrong and that his personal ones show the Republicans holding the House and the Senate. It's an illustration of the hex Rove has over the media that no one is entirely sure if he's bluffing or not.
If the Republicans do hold both chambers, which I think is highly unlikely, the power of the Rove mystique will reach new heights. And through all this, 2008 looms ever larger. The first debate of the cycle on the Republican side has already been scheduled: May 15, 2007 at the University of South Carolina and broadcast on Fox News. On the Democratic side, the buzz about a Hillary-Obama contest just gets louder. You can say many things about U.S. politics right now, but one thing is certain: It isn't dull.
It's now two weeks and counting until the U.S. midterm elections. And depending on whom you choose to believe, it's either the biggest election in recent memory or no big deal. What it might just be is a huge snafu. A report out today from the Election Reform Information Project predicts that polls across the country will be marred by technical problems from unproven new voting machines, confusion over stricter ID requirements and new poll locations, and troubles from inconsistent registration procedures. So whether Dems take the House, Senate, or both, there may be more than a few questionable results.
But just what will change in the realm of U.S. foreign policy if the Dems win? To find out, FP recently asked more than a dozen Washington insiders, ex-politicians, and pundits to speculate on U.S. foreign policy under a Dem-led Congress. Their answers will surprise you - they range from Rumsfeld's swift exit to more bipartisan cooperation to no change at all. Still, while a Democratic sweep may be racking up more and more believers, there are still 14 days to go. And with some candidates getting their names chopped off by faulty voter machines - a problem that can't be fixed before November 7 - there's reason to believe that this election is going to deliver more than its fair share of surprises.
And bonus: Don't miss the Post's Midterm Madness interactive game.
Are you in the know? I'll admit it, I'm not. I'm among the 61 percent of Americans who just don't know what President Bush's plan is for victory in Iraq. The White House keeps saying that, "the strategy is to win." But that confuses outcomes with the strategies for achieving them.
Well, rest easy, friends. U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns says there is a plan. It's just that it's a secret plan. And only he, Bush, and small handful of others are in the loop. The rest of us don't need to know what the plan is. In fact, it's better if we don't, because we might share the plan with the enemy. Here's Burns speaking about Bush and the secret plan this week:
He's got one, but he's not going to tell everybody in the whole world.... We're not going to tell you ... because you'll go out there and blow it."
Check it out for yourself:
The Foley scandal is making the U.S. even more cynical about its politicians, according to a New York Times/CBS poll. 69 percent of Americans believe that most members of Congress "do not try and follow the same rules for behavior as most Americans." The same number thinks that Congressmen see themselves as above the law. 78 percent take the view that Congress needs fresh blood. 79 percent say that the GOP leadership was more concerned about the politics of the Foley affair than the safety of the pages. The ABC/Wash Post poll finds that 74 percent imagine that the Dems would have handled things in the same way or worse.
The data also allow us to look at the effect of Bob Woodward's new book. It appears to have firmed up, rather than changed, people's opinions on whether Bush is being honest about Iraq. Compared to mid-September, the number who think the president is lying about the Iraq situation is up by 6 percent, while those who think that he is hiding something is down by 7 percent.
The pestilence-on-the-GOP/plague-on-the-Dems theme continues with 58 percent saying that they wish candidates ran without party labels. All in all, it's an excellent time to be an anti-politician politician, something that won't have escaped the notice of either the senior Senator from Arizona, or the junior Senator from Illinois.
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