Details emerge after hundreds of "tea party" members converged in a desolate spot along the Arizona/Mexico border some 70 miles east of Nogales, to support Gov. Jan Brewer's immigration law and quest for citizen security.
"I spoke with several ranchers and invited them to come to our upcoming national convention in Las Vegas in October. They all said no. The reason? If they left their homes for that length of time - several days - they would come back and find their homes stripped of all of their possessions," Tea Party Nation founder and featured speaker Judson Phillips, tells Inside the Beltway.
"People told me of bodies routinely found on their properties. Or they see smugglers and illegals trying to cross over - and sometimes crime victims. The border fence at the ranch where our event was held on Sunday stops short at a bird sanctuary. Illegals run through there day and night, but still, we can't put up a fence. The border patrol can't even take vehicles in there," Mr. Phillips continues.
"We also spotted a group of individuals on the other side of the border. We think they were planning to cross until they saw our event, and Border Patrol officers who were present that day. The group stayed on a little knoll about 200 yards inside Mexico, and were still there when I left. Of course, today, who knows where they are?" Mr. Phillips wonders.
SLICE OF LIFE
A Democrat not a Republican - got pied by an anti-war protester? Stop the presses.
Indeed, during an appearance in the normally Dem-friendly town of Big Rapids, Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan took an apple pie in the face from Michigan State University student Ahlam Mohsen, who was arrested - but not before she declared, "People tend to blame the war on Republicans, but we wanted to target Levin today to send a message that liberals and Democrats are just as implicated in the violence as the Republicans."
About that "ground zero mosque" coverage, or lack thereof. The Israeli news media were the first to report that mosque organizers are considering a new site for their project. Meanwhile, American broadcasters virtually have ignored the mosques critics who seek information about funding sources for the $100 million project and the possible political ties of organizer Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, says Culture and Media Institute analyst Alana Goodman
Journalists cast President Obama's recent announcement that he supported the project in heroic terms. But out of 13 network news shows in the aftermath of that revelation, only one - ABCs "Good Morning America" - made mention of the mosques funding and its links to potential extremism.
"Meanwhile, the networks made sure to cast mosque opponents as indifferent to the Constitution and 'Islamophobic,' " Ms. Goodman observes.
STEWART'S TEA PARTY
Hundreds of tickets for Comedy Central's upcoming visit to the nation's capital already are gone - snapped up only moments after they became available, and proof that Washington is in dire need of comic relief. Host Jon Stewart will stage the baroque "Indecision 2010 Presents 'When Grizzlies Attack': The Daily Show Midterm Teapartyganza," which tapes at the Shakespeare Theatre Company, from Oct. 25 to 28. Samantha Bee, Wyatt Cenac, Jason Jones and the rest of the faux "news team" predict ferocity and dubious moments.
"Is Washington, D.C., ready to host a bunch of unserious goofballs chattering a steady stream of ridiculous nonsense before the entire nation? Well, there's a first time for everything," Mr. Stewart observes.
"Woo-hoo. Snagged a reservation. Now to figure out which D.C. gutter to camp in to actually get a seat," says one lucky, intrepid ticket holder.
AS A PUBLIC SERVICE
"With three weeks to go until Labor Day, it's time to pull out all the summer stops," advises Publisher's Weekly editor Lynn Andriani, which could imply that wonks, politicos, strategists and those who love them should try "Barefoot Contessa" and cookbook author Ina Garten's watermelon mojitos. The two ladies thoughtfully share this recipe with Beltway readers; it serves 6.
30 large fresh mint leaves
3 to 4 thick slices fresh watermelon
12 ounces light rum, such as Bacardi
1/2 cup simple syrup (see note)
6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (3 limes)
Sprigs of mint and spears of watermelon, for serving
Use a mortar and pestle to mash the mint leaves. Remove and discard rind and seeds of watermelon. Put the fruit into a food processor fitted with the steel blade and puree. Put the mashed mint into a large pitcher with 2 cups of pureed watermelon, the rum, simple syrup, and lime juice and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into a pitcher for serving.
Place ice cubes in 6 glasses and pour the mojito mixture into the glasses. Garnish with sprigs of fresh mint and spears of watermelon. Serve ice cold.
Note: to make simple syrup, put 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in a small pan and simmer until the sugar dissolves. Chill.
POLL DU JOUR
- 65 percent of U.S. voters are "angry" over the current policies of the federal government.
- 87 percent of Republicans and 73 percent of unaffiliated voters are also angry.
- 52 percent of Democrats are not angry.
- 59 percent of voters overall say neither Republican or Democratic leaders understand "what is needed today."
- 26 percent disagree, 15 percent are not sure.
Source: A Rasmussen Reports survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted Aug. 13 and 14.
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