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Why Was Rep. Cynthia McKinney a No-Show in the House?

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Iraq and Security

Security remains the number one concern among Iraqis, but most Iraqis aren't living in fear. That according to a new survey by the International Republican Institute, which finds that 75 percent of Iraqis rate the security situation in the country as "poor," but 60 percent say security in their own neighborhoods is good or fair.

Comment Controversy

South Dakota Republican Senator John Thune is accusing a reporter of twisting his words to stir up controversy. The AP quoted Thune as saying he'd distance himself from President Bush if he were up for reelection.

Appearing today on FOX News radio's "Brian and the Judge" show, Thune said he was "shocked" at that story — and accused the reporter of "cherry-picking the comment" out of context. Thune said he respects and supports the president, adding that he was merely advising Republicans not to let the Democrats make every local election a referendum on President Bush.

McKinney MIA?

Where in the world is Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney? She received official permission to miss votes on Monday and Tuesday, because of the Democratic primary in Georgia. She got the most votes — but not by enough to avoid a runoff. But the Georgia Democrat was a no-show in the House the rest of the week — missing 19 votes, including an attempt to override the president's veto on stem cell research, an amendment banning gay marriage, and a bill to keep the courts from ruling on the phrase "under God" in the pledge of allegiance.

Politician in Prison

A candidate for governor in Tennessee — who's running on a platform of Christian values — spent last night in jail for public intoxication. Republican Mark Albertini was arrested after a party rally in Knoxville, when police found him standing unsteadily at an intersection, and a search of his car turned up a bottle of wine and a pistol.

That's Commitment

Speaking of Tennessee, one candidate in the state feels so strongly about giving voters a "none of the above" option on the ballot — that he made the phrase his middle name.

David "None of the Above" Gatchell legally changed his middle name from Leroy last August. Now, he's challenging the state election commission to include the new middle name on the November ballot. Gatchell says he knows he has a "one in a gazillion" chance of winning — and says he wouldn't take office even if he did. The ambitious candidate is running for governor and senator, but says if he's elected he'll immediately resign.

—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