Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Question: Apart from their aversion to Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court, what do conservative commentators Bill Kristol, Charles Krauthammer, David Frum, Laura Ingraham and George Will have in common?
The Ivy League, that's what. All except Ingraham and Will went to Harvard. Ingraham went to Dartmouth and Will studied at Princeton, and later, Oxford. Former Justice Department official John Yoo, who wrote in The Washington Post yesterday that President Bush had swung and missed with the Miers nomination, is also a Harvard man.
Law professor Douglas Kmiec, who defended Miers in the Post, went to Northwestern. Prominent Democrat Martin Frost, who has praised Miers, went to the University of Missouri. And Miers herself went to Southern Methodist University.
The Democratic Senate Campaign Committee is still paying the legal bills for two staffers who illegally obtained credit information on Maryland's Lieutenant Governor and possible Republican Senate candidate — Michael Steele.
Researchers Katie Barge and Lauren Weiner resigned last month after using a social security number reportedly obtained from court documents to access Steele's personal credit report, which constitutes a federal crime. New York Senator Charles Schumer, the DSCC chairman who co-authored an identity protection bill earlier this year, has denied any knowledge of his staffers' activities.
Meanwhile, The New York Times has yet to publish a word on the story involving the state's senior senator.
Plan Balboa Paranoia
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez recently accused the U.S. military of planning to invade his country, even naming the secret military operation — called Plan Balboa — that he said was already underway to overthrow his government.
Turns out, Plan Balboa really does exist, but only as a military training exercise in Spain. The Spanish military designed the Internet-based game in 2001 to train senior officers. Chavez caught wind of Plan Balboa, which involves a country similar to Venezuela, code-named "Brown,” after two Venezuelan officers enrolled in the Spanish training course. Both Spain and the U.S. flatly deny any plans to invade Venezuela.
Barry Back In Hot Water
Trouble again for former DC Mayor Marion Barry who's landed himself at the center of an IRS investigation for failing to file federal income tax returns since 1998. Barry, whose 1990 conviction for misdemeanor cocaine possession earned him a six-month prison term, currently serves as a DC councilman.
No charges have been filed, but Barry's attorney is negotiating a plea bargain to avoid jail time and any fines. A U.S. District Court judge could decide on the plea agreement by the end of this week.
— FOX News' Aaron Bruns contributed to this report