Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Impeachment Advocate

Michigan Congressman John Conyers, who would head up the House Judiciary Committee should the Democrats retake the house, has already held a mock hearing on impeaching President Bush.

But in The Washington Post, Conyers writes that he will not immediately begin impeachment proceedings if the Democrats win. Instead, he wants to create a bipartisan committee to investigate "whether intelligence was mistaken or manipulated in the run-up to the Iraq war... the extent to which high-ranking officials approved the use of torture," as well as "whether the leaking of the name of a covert CIA operative was deliberate or accidental, as well as the identity of those responsible."

Conyers says if there is evidence of impeachable offenses, his Judiciary Committee will act upon them.

Home Sweet Home

Some striking contrasts in a current poll on whether the country is on the right track. It seems that the closer things are to home, the better people think they're going.

The latest Washington Post poll shows that 69 percent of Americans feel the country is "pretty seriously off on the wrong track." But just 52 percent said the same when asked about how things are going in their own state.

And a majority of Americans — 58 percent — said things were going in the right direction in their local communities.

Senate Debate

The Senate Judiciary Committee's party-line approval of a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage prompted a shouting match between two opposing senators and led one to walk out of the meeting.

Wisconsin Democrat Russ Feingold declared that his love of the constitution forbade supporting the amendment — and announced that he would leave in protest. Committee Chairman Arlen Specter shot back, "I don't need to be lectured by you. You are no more a protector of the Constitution than I am," adding, "if you want to leave, good riddance."

Feingold replied, "I've enjoyed your lecture too, Mr. Chairman ... see ya."

Straight to the Heart

When Republican candidate Bill Conrad says his opponent, "Doesn't have the heart," for California State Assembly, he means it literally. In fact, Conrad highlighted that phrase in bold red letters in a direct mail to California voters making political hay out of fellow Republican Tom Berryhill's heart transplant six years ago.

Conrad notes that the average lifespan of a heart transplant recipient is seven years, that transplant recipients are vulnerable to severe stress, and that transplant medications make the recipient more susceptible to illness and death, adding, "Can you imagine the costs to taxpayers for a Special Election when poor health renders him unable to fulfill the duties of office?"

—FOX News Channel's 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