Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
The group Christian Peacemaker Teams, says it's delighted that three of its four volunteers kidnapped in Iraq are now safe, but if the group is grateful to the coalition forces that freed them, you wouldn't know it from its statement.
CPT never once mentions the military rescue, saying only that it's pleased the hostages "have been safely released." What's more, the group blames the military for the abduction, saying, "The illegal occupation of Iraq by multinational forces is the root cause of the insecurity which led to this kidnapping and so much pain and suffering in Iraq."
Times Takes a Fall
Another black eye for The New York Times, after a woman it had portrayed as a frustrated Katrina victim stuck in a Brooklyn hotel was arrested for welfare fraud. Prosecutors say Donna Fenton was not, in fact, a victim of Katrina and improperly received thousands in government aid.
The Times now admits it did not conduct adequate interviews or record checks, which would have uncovered a previous fraud conviction and raised serious questions about the truthfulness of Fenton's account.
Last week, the Times corrected a story falsely identifying the hooded Abu Ghraib prisoner in an infamous photograph and days before, editors apologized for a distorted picture of former Virginia Governor Mark Warner that appeared on the cover of its Sunday magazine.
A top producer at ABC News says he's deeply sorry for what he called his "inappropriate" comments about President Bush in an e-mail that came to light today.
"Good Morning America" weekend executive producer Jon Green complained about the president's debate performance on September 30, 2004, writing in a company e-mail: "Are you watching this? Bush makes me sick. If he uses the 'mixed messages' line one more time, I'm going to puke."
After the mail was featured on the Drudge Report Web site Thursday, Green sent another e-mail to ABC staffers apologizing for embarrassing the network, but not disavowing the sentiments he expressed.
Vice Presidential Demands
When Vice President Dick Cheney has "downtime" at a hotel, his requests are fairly modest — a large bed, a desk and chair and four cans of "Diet Caffeine Free Sprite."
The Smoking Gun has obtained a copy of the vice president's hotel requirements, which also include a private bathroom and a coffee pot with decaf brewed prior to his arrival.
He likes all the lights turned on when he arrives and asks that the temperature be set to a brisk 68 degrees. And to keep up with daily events, the vice president requires a copy of the local paper, as well as The New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal — and he asks that all TV sets are tuned to FOX News Channel.
— FOX News' Aaron Bruns contributed to this report.