- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Spanish response to American president

“Estamos orgullosos de que el Congresista Xavier Becerra emita la respuesta en espanol este ano,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi just announced. “Su intelecto profundo y su experiencia substantiva de la politica publica le han hecho un lider nacional en cuanto a varios temas de importancia para los latinos y todos los estadounidenses. Como ex Presidente del Caucus Hispano Congresional y como integrante nuevo del Liderato Demcrata, como Asistente de la Presidenta de la Camara, el Congresista Becerra fortalece las voces de los latinos y del Partido Democrata a traves del pais.”

Translated (by your friendly neighborhood, sometimes bilingual, Washington Times):

“We are proud that Congressman Xavier Becerra submitted the answer in Spanish this year,” Reid and Pelosi announced. “His profound intellect and his extensive experience in public office have made him a national leader in various important subjects for the Latin people and United States citizens. As the former president of the Hispanic Caucus and the integration with the leadership of the Democratic Party, as assistant to the Speaker of the House, Congressman Becerra strengthens the voices of the Latin people and the Democratic Party throughout the country.”

— Charles Hurt, Capitol Hill bureau chief, The Washington Times

Wesley’s comments

Wesley Clark, the retired general and onetime Democratic candidate for president, drew the ire of a Jewish group over comments that “the Israeli press” and “New York money people” were pressing for U.S. military action against Iran.

“That kind of language, based in old stereotypes about Jews, feeds into anti-Semitic conspiracy theories about Jewish power,” said Matthew Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition. “Clark’s remarks were hurtful, damaging and wrong.”

Mr. Brooks demanded Mr. Clark apologize to the American Jewish community.

Mr. Clark’s remarks were reported on Arianna Huffington’s blog.

— S.A. Miller, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

Round two

It was like deja vu a few minutes ago, when current and former presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich announced part of his platform on the House floor.

The Ohio Democrat promised he will submit legislation - again - to create a cabinet-level Department of Peace, an idea that generated plenty of ink when he first ran for the White House in 2004.

“This is the moment to take a stand,” he said, giving a speech in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

— Christina Bellantoni, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

Did you know?

This month is National Stalking Awareness Month. The Justice Department held an event on the topic at the National Press Club this afternoon.

Not the kind of thing you need to buy a Hallmark card for, really, but thanks anyway.

— Jon Ward, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

Webb to respond to Bush speech

The Democratic leadership in Congress has chosen Sen. Jim Webb, Virginia Democrat, to give the party’s response to President Bush’s state of the union speech on Jan. 23.

“As a combat veteran, he understands personally how crucial it is to find a new direction in Iraq and begin to bring the war to a close,” said a joint statement from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat.

— Jon Ward, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

Senate sisterhood

U.S. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski roared into action for the official portrait of the chamber’s 16 female senators — a record number.

“The women Senators are not a caucus, we’re a force,” said Miss Mikulski, Maryland Democrat and “dean” of the lady senators.

— S.A. Miller, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

Oh really?

Big announcement over at the Obamarama headquarters: the Illinois Democrat is forming a presidential exploratory committee.

Several news outlets hyped the news, but one site in particular at one point this morning featured a dead link that suggested Barack Obama’s Web site was down. The official announcement directs visitors to this page.

Stay tuned.

— Christina Bellantoni, Capitol Hill correspondent, The Washington Times

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