Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Checkered Past

Civil rights attorney James Myart, who has accused Capitol police of racial profiling in his client Rep. Cynthia McKinney's altercation with an officer last week, is no stranger to run-ins with government security. In 2002, Myart was barred from the Department of Agriculture after he repeatedly attempted to circumvent security and lied to security officers.

What's more, The San Antonio Express News reported in 1999 that Myart was suspended from practicing law in Texas for a year on charges that he "engaged in fraud and deceit" and used an ethnic slur during settlement proceedings in a discrimination complaint.

It's All Relative

The president's approval rating continues to fall in the latest FOX News poll, but not as far as members of Congress of both parties. Thirty-six percent of Americans say they approve of the job President Bush is doing, down from 39 percent last month. Republicans in Congress saw their job approval drop 5 points to 29 percent and Democrats dropped 7 points from last month. But Americans don't appear ready for a wholesale house cleaning on Capitol Hill... in a sign that citizens continue to exempt their own representatives from their overall judgments, 57 percent say they approve of the job their representative is doing.

Support for Steele?

Democratic pollsters are warning party officials that black voters in Maryland are primed to desert the party to vote for black Republican Senate candidate Michael Steele and that Democrats shouldn't wait to "knock Steele down." A survey of black voters conducted by a Democratic National Committee polling consultant shows that as much as 44 percent would abandon their historic ties to Democrats "after hearing Steele's messaging."

But the report may have also located Steele's weak spot, noting that black voters responded most negatively when pollsters identified Steele as "George W. Bush's hand-picked candidate."

No Pledge in Court

A county judge in Georgia has been forced to recuse himself from a civil contempt case because he recites the Pledge of Allegiance in his courtroom. Judge Mark Lewis has recited the pledge at the start of every court proceeding since the September 11 terrorist attacks.

But an Atlanta attorney filed an ethics complaint against the judge last month alleging that his client could receive unfair treatment since Lewis considers his court "an American court, rather than a court for all persons situated in America." Lewis says that once the complaint was formally filed, he was "ethically required" to remove himself from the case, but called the complaint "appalling."

— FOX News' Aaron Bruns contributed to this report.

With more than 35 years of journalism experience to draw from, Brit Hume currently serves as a senior political analyst for FOX News Channel (FNC) and contributes to all major political coverage. Hume also is regular panelist on FOX's weekly public affairs program, "FOX News Sunday" on Sundays at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. ET. Click here for more information on Brit Hume