And now the most compelling two minutes in television, the latest from the wartime grapevine:
Dismissing NY Chairman's Opinion?
The Sierra Club has come down on its New York State chairman after he objected to the organization's endorsement of State Comptroller Carl McCall, the Democratic candidate for governor. The New York chapter's executive board acted to back McCall by a 20-3 vote, but afterward, state Sierra Club Chairman Aaron Mair told the New York Daily News that the endorsement "was more party politics rather than a discussion of the governor's environmental record." That brought an e-mail from National Club President Jenifer Ferenstein saying the endorsement stands and requesting that Mair "offer no comment and refer any press" to someone else.
Don't Carry Dubya Unless Asked?
Network executives at CBS, NBC and ABC are saying they refused to carry President Bush's speech on Iraq last night because the White House did not ask them to carry it. As for whether they might have carried it as news, a spokesman for NBC told the Washington Post that it was "a speech to a group of people in Cincinnati," not an address to the nation." Another TV news executive, unnamed, said the speech was "a pep rally." The White House said it did not formally request time from the networks because to do so would have suggested that war was imminent.
Ballot Debate Continues...
Out in Hawaii, they changed their mind about keeping the late Congresswoman Patsy Mink on the ballot. The Democrats asked the state supreme court to do what New Jersey's highest court did and let them replace Mink on the ballot next month. The idea was to avoid the special election that would be needed in the event Mink won in November. But the state Supreme Court said no, so Democrats are back to urging people to vote for Mink, and perhaps wondering why New Jersey got to replace the very much alive Bob Torricelli and they have to leave the deceased Patsy Mink on the ballot.
God Will Remain
The House of Representatives today passed a bill that reaffirms support of the phrase "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, and for the phrase "In God We Trust" as the national motto. It passed 401-5, with four others voting present. The five nays came from Mike Honda and Pete Stark, of California, Barney Frank of Massachusetts, Bobby Scott of Virginia, and Jim McDermott of Washington state, all Democrats. The four who voted present were also Democrats.