Tags: Giuliani | Victory

Giuliani Victory 'Would Help' Pro-Choice

By    |   Sunday, 28 October 2007 04:52 PM

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. NARAL: Giuliani Victory 'Would Help' Pro-Choice
2. Former Bill Clinton Aides Backing Obama
3. Soldier of Fortune Mag Slams Arrest of 'Freedom Fighters'
4. Democrats Look for Big Gains in House in '08
5. Giuliani Boasts of Bloomberg — and Roots for Red Sox
6. Imus in Talks With Rural TV Channel
7. We Heard: Ann Coulter, Tom Davis, Maria Shriver

1. NARAL: Giuliani Victory 'Would Help' Pro-Choice

The pro-choice political action organization NARAL believes a win by Republican Rudy Giuliani in the 2008 presidential race would be a boon to pro-choice forces.

Giuliani's stance on abortion rights has alienated many social conservatives and evangelical Republicans. But NARAL's political director Elizabeth Shipp told the Huffington Post that a Giuliani victory “would help” the pro-choice movement by showing it is possible to win the presidency while still supporting abortion rights.

“The Republican Party used to be about the conservative principles of limited government intervention in private life,” she said.

“It seems to me if they went back to that and stood out from the wicked mainstream, anti-choice agenda, I think yeah, it would be good for the movement.”

But Shipp stopped short of saying that NARAL would support Giuliani's candidacy, although she acknowledged that he is the only GOP candidate in the field who could conceivably win the group's backing.

NARAL — formed in 1968 as the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws — has endorsed only one Republican presidential candidate in the history of its political action committee, the Huffington Post notes.

In 1980, the group made a donation to Rep. John Anderson around the time he was leaving the GOP to launch an independent White House bid against Ronald Reagan.

Giuliani had a pro-choice record as mayor of New York City. He said in Republican debates in May that “it would be okay” to repeal Roe v. Wade, but added that he “would respect a woman's right to make a different choice.”

Some Christian conservative leaders have threatened to bolt the GOP and support a third-party candidate if Giuliani wins the Republican nomination, and a number are urging Republicans to support Mitt Romney's candidacy as a way of heading off a Giuliani win.

Editor's Note:

2. Former Bill Clinton Aides Backing Obama

A number of officials and advisers who served in Bill Clinton's presidential administration are not backing his wife Hillary's White House bid and are instead throwing their support behind her Democratic rival Barack Obama.

They include former energy and transportation secretary Federico Pena, former commerce secretary William Daley, foreign policy advisers Anthony Lake and Susan Rice, former Navy secretary Richard Danzig, women's advocate Betsy Myers, and Deval Patrick, who was assistant attorney general for civil rights.

In interviews with the Boston Globe, several former Clinton aides who support Obama said they view the Illinois senator as the best hope for the party, and cite his youth as a plus — Obama is 46, while Hillary just turned 60.

Some also said they fear Hillary is too divisive to defeat a Republican opponent or govern effectively.

“One of the chief things that would energize a very dispirited Republican Party is Hillary Clinton on the ticket,” Obama supporter Eric Holder, who was second in command at Bill Clinton's Justice Department in the late 1990s, told the Globe.

“My feelings of loyalty are outweighed by my concern about the world my kids are going to live in.”

Hillary does enjoy the backing of many officials and advisers from her husband's political machine, and her own loyal staff from the 1990s.

But Greg Craig, who defended Bill Clinton against impeachment in the Monica Lewinsky scandal and now advises Obama, told the Globe his candidate is “a thoughtful, youthful new voice with a new vision for finding common ground, rather than finding a reason for conflict and difference. I think he represents the future and everybody else in this election is more of the same of the past.”

Editor's Note:

3. Soldier of Fortune Mag Slams Arrest of 'Freedom Fighters'

Soldier of Fortune magazine has run a blistering editorial attacking a government sting operation that ensnared a group plotting to overthrow the communist government in Laos.

“One of the most egregious miscarriages of justice we have seen was initiated on 4 June 2007, when 200 law enforcement agents swooped down on a group of Laotian freedom fighters led by 77-year-old General Vang Pao and arrested them for violating the Neutrality Act,” the article by Lt. Col. Robert K. Brown (Ret.) begins.

“They had plotted to overthrow the murderous communist government in Laos from which they had fled when the U.S. sold out the anti-communist forces in Southeast Asia in 1975. Their noble objective was to free their oppressed people.”

Vang Pao played a key role in fighting for U.S. interests in Laos from l962 to 1975, and tens of thousands of his fellow Hmong tribesmen were killed.

The sting operation carried out the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms — code-named Operation Tarnished Eagle — “consisted of the lead ATF snitch, allegedly a 10-year SEAL veteran, sucking Vang Pao and his accomplices, including an obviously either not too bright or extremely naïve retired U.S. Army officer, into believing he would provide them with Stinger missiles, small arms and ammo,” the magazine disclosed.

“The weapons would then be transported to safe houses in Thailand and Laos.

“The ATF snitch sweetened the pot by promising to provide a 25-man group of former Special Forces troopers who were now mercenaries…

“If the ATF had any ethics or principles, they would have taken Vang Pao aside when they first got involved in this plot and informed him, 'General, we know you have the best interests of your countrymen at heart, that you wish to overthrow a communist dictatorship. But you can't do it from the U.S. You will be violating the Neutrality Act and if you continue, we will put you in jail.'”

Instead, federal authorities in California indicted Vang Pao and eight others.

The editorial continues: “As Richard Lloyd Parry, Asia Editor for the [London] Times, noted: 'U.S. authorities find themselves in the ironic position of leaping to the defense of an authoritarian regime they spent 13 years and many lives trying to destroy.'”

Editor's Note:

4. Democrats Look for Big Gains in House in '08

The combination of an advantage in fundraising and a slew of Republican retirements bodes well for big Democratic gains in the House next year, according to political pundit Stuart Rothenberg.

For at least the past four or five election cycles, the National Republican Congressional Committee, with its edge over the Democrats in fundraising, has been able to spend lavishly to prop up weak GOP incumbents or go after Democratic seats.

“Now, it's very possible that Democrats will have that opportunity, making it difficult for Republican challengers to knock off allegedly vulnerable Democratic incumbents and forcing the NRCC to defend late-developing threats during this cycle,” Rothenberg writes in Roll Call.

“The recent flurry of Republican retirements — Reps. Jerry Weller in Illinois, Jim Ramstad in Minnesota, Heather Wilson in New Mexico and Deborah Pryce and Ralph Regula in Ohio — could be only the tip of the iceberg for 2008. All of those open seats are excellent Democratic targets.”

Democrats can also hope for victories against a number of Republican incumbents who won unimpressively in 2006, including Tim Walberg and Joe Knollenberg in Michigan.

And the Democrats' chances could be bright in districts where inexperienced challengers nearly upset GOP incumbents last year and are trying to challenge again, according to Rothenberg, editor of the Rothenberg Political Report.

On the other hand, Democrats could find it difficult to retain several seats in basically Republican districts they won last year, he opined.

Districts that Bush won comfortably in 2004 and were formerly represented by Tom DeLay in Texas and Don Sherwood in Pennsylvania could dump their freshmen congressmen “to return to their normal partisan ways, as could districts in California, Kansas and Florida,” said Rothenberg, who concludes:

“At this point, anything from little net change in the House to a considerable Democratic win seems possible.”

Editor's Note:

5. Giuliani Boasts of Bloomberg — and Backs Red Sox

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is enlisting his successor Michael Bloomberg as an ally of sorts in his presidential campaign, boasting that Rudy kept New York's mayoralty in GOP hands while rival Mitt Romney turned over the Massachusetts governor's office to a Democrat.

That Democrat, Deval Patrick, has endorsed Barack Obama's White House bid.

“I would make the point that I was succeeded by a Republican mayor and that I had two terms as mayor of New York City,” Giuliani said in Boston Tuesday.

“I got re-elected as a Republican in a Democratic city … It's real hard to get re-elected [in] a Democratic city or state. I think it's even more a statement on the kind of job you did to get re-elected.”

The New York Sun noted that it's “an unusual twist” for Giuliani to call the attention of GOP primary voters to Bloomberg, a “tax-raising, anti-gun, anti-tobacco, pro-abortion-rights, pro-gay-marriage politician who has since left the Republican Party to become an independent.”

But Richard Tisei, a Republican state senator in Massachusetts who supports Giuliani, also played the Bloomberg card at the Boston event, saying Giuliani “did everything he did in New York and then was replaced by a Republican as opposed to Governor Romney here — his handpicked lieutenant governor got killed in the election.”

Die-hard New York Yankees fan Giuliani surprised his Boston audience by declaring that he was rooting for the Boston Red Sox — archrivals of the Yankees — in the World Series against the Colorado Rockies.

“I'm an American League fan, and I go with the American League team, maybe with the exception of the Mets,” he said.

It wasn't lost on observers that Rudy is currently campaigning in early primary state New Hampshire, home of ardent Red Sox fans.

Responding to Giuliani's remarks, Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom said: “Rudy Giuliani left his successor a budget deficit. That's probably one of the reasons Mr. Bloomberg un-enrolled as a Republican. By contrast, Mitt Romney left his successor a $2.2 billion rainy day fund, and a budget that ended the year with a surplus.”

The Giuliani campaign asserts that he actually left office with a balanced budget.

As for Rudy's support of the Red Sox, Fehrnstrom said: “If Colorado wants Mayor Giuliani to root for the Rockies, they're going to have to move their primary up.”

Editor's Note:

6. Imus in Talks With Rural TV Channel

Ousted talk show host Don Imus, expected to return to the airwaves on New York's WABC radio in December, may also return to TV on an odd choice of channels — RFD-TV, which caters mostly to farming and other rural communities.

Imus is reportedly in serious talks with the satellite and cable channel regarding a simulcast of his radio show on television, according to the New York Times.

Imus' previous show on CBS Radio was broadcast nationally on MSNBC before he was fired from both media outlets over disparaging comments he made about the Rutgers University women's basketball team.

RFD – which stands for rural free delivery — claims it can be seen in more than 30 million homes.

If Imus does wind up on RFD, he'll have to share the channel with such offerings as “Cattlemen to Cattlemen,” a newsmagazine about the cattle industry.

The simulcast on RFD would be available in New York, Los Angeles and other large cities only to viewers with satellite service.

Editor's Note:

7. We Heard . . .

THAT conservative pundit and author Ann Coulter “doesn't have an anti-Semitic bone in her body,” according to her latest date mate, former New York City Council President Andrew Stein.

Two weeks ago the Insider Report disclosed that Coulter was spied “in passionate liplock” with Stein, a lifelong Democrat.

Now Coulter — who recently sparked controversy by remarking that Jews could “perfect” themselves by becoming Christians — was spotted dining with Stein at a Manhattan restaurant. The pair was accosted by a man who came to their table and berated Coulter for her right-wing views and Stein for dating her.

Stein told the heckler to “get lost and learn some manners.”

Stein latter told the New York Post's Page Six column: “On the issue of her supposedly anti-Semitic remarks, I'm a Jew, and Joe Lieberman is her favorite Democrat. While I disagree with her on a lot of issues, she is a strong supporter of Israel and doesn't have an anti-Semitic bone on her body.”

THAT Virginia Republican Rep. Tom Davis has announced he won't pursue an expected bid to replace retiring Sen. John Warner in 2008 — amid speculation that he won't seek re-election to the House either.

He said at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast on Thursday that the prospect of a bitter Republican nomination process through a convention had helped dissuade him from a Senate run, The Politico reported.

He also said he hasn't decided whether he will run for re-election next year.

But Roll Call reported earlier in the week that “some knowledgeable sources on Capitol Hill are saying that if he's not moving up, then Davis likely will be moving out, regardless of the fact that he would be a strong favorite for an eighth term in 2008.”

Davis has admitted he considered retiring before running for re-election in 2006.

According to Roll Call, Davis' departure from the House would make his seat in suburban Washington, D.C., vulnerable to takeover by the Democrats.

THAT Maria Shriver insists she won't return to television news — and points to media coverage of Anna Nicole Smith's death as the reason why.

Speaking Tuesday at a conference on women in Long Beach, Calif., Shriver recalled the media circus surrounding Smith's accidental drug overdose last February and said: “It was then that I knew the TV news business had changed and so had I,” the Orange County Register reported.

“I called NBC News and told them I'm not coming back.”

Shriver took a leave from NBC when her husband Arnold Schwarzenegger ran for California governor in 2003. She returned briefly to anchor “Dateline NBC,” but announced in 2004 that she was leaving the network because of difficulties balancing her career as a journalist with her duties as California's first lady.

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. NARAL: Giuliani Victory 'Would Help' Pro-Choice2. Former Bill Clinton Aides Backing Obama3. Soldier of Fortune Mag Slams Arrest of 'Freedom Fighters'4. Democrats Look for Big Gains in House in '085. Giuliani Boasts of...
Sunday, 28 October 2007 04:52 PM
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