Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
What’s In a Name?
The Washington Post (search) reports today, "Skepticism of Bush's Social Security Plan is Growing. Polling and Interviews Find Concerns Across Age Groups." The Post says 55 percent of all people are against the president's proposals. But when the president's name is left out, support for personal investment accounts is large and appears to be growing with 56 percent in favor overall including 68 percent of those under 30, and more than 60 percent of those in their 30s and 40s. Those numbers actually reflect an increase in support for personal accounts since the Post survey three months ago.
In mid-December, 53 percent were in favor overall compared to 56 percent today, and support in every age group then was lower than it is in the most recent poll, suggesting support for the concept of personal accounts is actually growing.
John Kerry (search) says Americans, a majority of which voted for President Bush, were misinformed during last year's campaign, and he insists it's the media's fault, at least in part.
At a recent forum at the JFK library, Kerry said the "decision-making ability of the American electorate has been profoundly impacted" by a "sub-culture and a sub-media that talks ... for entertainment purposes rather than for flow of information."
To back up his claim, Kerry — quoted by the Washington Post and the Weekly Standard — said 77 percent of the people who voted for Bush in November believed weapons of mass destruction had been found in Iraq. A poll released just before the election, however, actually showed that a minority of Bush voters believed Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the U.S. invaded.
Dick Cheney (search) is less than two months into his second term as vice president, but the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (search) is already advising him on what to do post-retirement. In a letter to Cheney, Peta says, "[we] most respectfully ask that when you retire, you take up hiking, bird-watching, or boating ... as alternatives to fishing, which causes the animals on the end of the line immeasurable agony."
Fish are "interesting individuals," PETA goes on to say, "as worthy of our concern as any dog or cat." Plus, Peta says, "physical activites such as hiking in the mountains of Wyoming (or some other undisclosed location) are better for your heart health than lounging around with a fishing rod."
— FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report