The latest from the Political Grapevine:
Lost in Translation
There was uproar in Republican circles last week when California Governor Arnold Scharzenegger was quoted in a German newspaper saying that the Republican Party should "move a little further left." But the reporter who conducted the interview now says Schwarzenegger never actually said that.
Marc Hujer translated Schwarzenegger's English remarks into German and says he changed the phrasing to make the interview more understandable to a German audience. Schwarzenegger actually said he'd like to "Keep [the Republican Party] to the right where it is, but ... cross over that centerline a little bit, because that would immediately take away 5 percent from the Democrats."
Utah Republican Senator Bob Bennett handily won his re-election bid last month. But now one of his challengers is demanding a new election, even though he received only 16 votes to Bennett's 600,000.
Write-in candidate Cody Judy has sued Utah election officials for failing to list write-in candidates at the polls, or provide pencils to write in the names. Bennett's attorneys have asked a judge to dismiss the suit, which also seeks $100,000 in campaign expenses.
Before running for office, Judy served eight years in prison after using a fake bomb in an effort to force a Mormon official at a news conference to declare him "the true prophet of God."
An effort to boost Christmas Tree recycling in Chicago has come under fire by atheists, who say it unfairly benefits Christians. Authorities planned to hand out a year's worth of blue recycling bags in exchange for one used tree, but atheist activist Rob Sherman says the program is inherently unfair to those without Christmas trees.
Officials told him he could bring someone else's tree but Sherman complained that "Atheists shouldn't have to go begging from home to home for a Christian who will sponsor them." The city will now offer the blue bags to anyone who visits a tree recycling location and brings a large bag of any recyclable material.
Annoy Thy Neighbor
An Arizona man who transformed his home into a winter wonderland featuring 150,000 lights and music may have to face the music, courtesy of some annoyed neighbors.
Chris Birkett will appear in court on January 20th on charges of malicious noise-making and faces up to six months behind bars and a $2,500 fine. Birkett says he was merely trying to spread Christmas cheer, but the family next door told police that the noise is driving them nuts.
Birkett has collected 6,500 signatures of support so far, but one letter to a local paper in Arizona said Birkett "should be reminded that Jesus was born in a stable...not in Disneyland."
— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report