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Special Report

Reporting on Rove

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Reporting on Rove

New York Times reporter Elisabeth Bumiller, who served as the pool reporter representing the rest of the print media aboard Air Force One today, advised her colleagues that Karl Rove's promotion to deputy chief of staff meant he would be in charge — among other things — of the national security council. In fact, Rove will merely coordinate policy among a number of White House councils.

But the Democratic National committee quickly seized on the erroneous report with an e-mail attacking Rove's credentials. DNC chairman Terry McAuliffe accused him "bending the truth and using dirty tricks to get his way."

Bumiller later put out an update, admitting no error, saying only that Press Secretary Scott McClellan had called to say her original report was in error.

Explanation Unacceptable

Despite his denials, a growing number of witnesses are saying CNN executive Eason Jordan did indeed suggest that American troops deliberately targeted journalists in Iraq. Democratic Congressman Barney Frank, who first brought Jordan's comments to light, says he was "agog" at the accusation and that he still doesn't accept Jordan's explanation. Democratic Senator Christopher Dodd says he was in the audience, and that he was "outraged."

And David Gergen, who was moderating the panel discussion, says he "gasped" when he heard Jordan's remarks. Gergen says that Jordan later "walked back" the comments, but other witnesses disagree.

ACLU Action

Even the ACLU is defending a University of Las Vegas professor over comments he made about homosexuals. Economist Hans Hoppe said research shows that homosexuals tend to plan less for the future than heterosexuals. He suggested this could be because homosexuals tend not to have children and to live riskier lifestyles.

When one student complained he was offended, the university threatened Hoppe with a reprimand and a pay cut. Hoppe tells the Las Vegas Review-Journal that it's his job to report economic theories, not to consider how a student might feel about them.

Meanwhile the ACLU says they'll defend Hoppe's right to academic freedom, but hastened to add that they don't subscribe to his theories.

Security Concerns

Controversial Colorado professor Ward Churchill's appearance at Eastern Washington University has been cancelled, after school officials said they received numerous threats of violence. Churchill has gained notoriety for comparing some 9-11 victims to Nazis and students supporting the professor say the university is trying to stifle his freedom of speech. But in what the school calls a "testament to [its] commitment to free speech," an appearance by porn star Ron Jeremy will go on as scheduled.

— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report