Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
It is unlikely the Federal Election Commission will conduct an audit of the Obama campaign and how it raised more than $600 million. The Politico newspaper reports despite allegations of questionable donations and accounting, the record-shattering sum is seen by the FEC as minimizing the significance of any errors.
That suggests the Obama campaign was so flush with cash that if it did break FEC rules it would not have made much of a difference. The FEC would also have to vote on whether to launch the audit, and is prone to deadlock on such matters.
Meanwhile, the commission is legally obligated to carry out a rigorous audit of the McCain campaign. The senator accepted $84 million in public funding, which automatically triggers a federal review. The audit could take years and will cost millions to defend. McCain has reportedly put aside almost $9.5 million to pay for the audit.
The man appointed by the United Nations to investigate Israeli conduct in the Palestinian territories seems to be attracted to the notion that the September 11 attacks were orchestrated by the U.S. government.
Richard Falk of the U.N. Human Rights Council writes in a Scottish student newspaper that there are "doubts surrounding the true character of the events surrounding the 9/11 attacks," adding that "the established elites of the American governmental structure have something to hide, and much to explain... the persisting inability to resolve this fundamental controversy about 9/11 subtly taints the legitimacy of the American government."
Falk himself is not a stranger to controversy. Last year he compared Israeli actions in Gaza to those of the Nazis during World War II.
Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards tip-toed back into the public eye Tuesday, three months after admitting to cheating on his cancer-stricken wife. Edwards gave a speech at Indiana University, but requested that no video cameras or recording devices be allowed.
Although it is not university policy to impose such restrictions, the student group that invited Edwards complied, and all questions had to be submitted for approval beforehand so Edwards did not have to get into why he cheated on his wife with videographer Rielle Hunter.
What he did talk about was politics, specifically President-elect Obama as well as poverty in America. He said he wanted to continue working for the poor, saying, "That's what I want to spend my life doing."
Straightening Things Out
The European Union — which is not shy about regulating commerce down to the last detail — has now lifted restrictions on fruits and vegetables that are crooked, bent or twisted.
Previously, if perfectly healthy produce did not meet a specific size or shape, it was banned from supermarket shelves. Some of the affected foods were cabbage, onions, melons and eggplants.
But at its weekly meeting, the EU ended those standards enacted 20 years ago. EU Agriculture Commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel says, "This marks a new dawn for the curvy cucumber and the knobbly carrot... in these days of high food prices and general economic difficulties, consumers should be able to choose from the widest range of products possible."
— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy 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.