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Inside the Beltway: The bipartisan side of the March for Life
Question of the Day
Lawmakers are not ignoring the March for Life, scheduled at high noon Wednesday on the National Mall, and currently the largest pro-life demonstration on the planet, according to organizers.
“In a rare feat for the nation’s capital, representatives from both sides of the aisle will come together,” the organizers say, pointing out that keynote speakers include House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia and Rep. Dan Lipinski, Illinois Democrat. Also speaking, though the House is in recess this week: Republican Reps. Christopher H. Smith of New Jersey and Vicky Hartzler of Missouri.
“Support for life pervades American society, regardless of party affiliation. These representatives have all courageously defended life during their time in office, and we could not be more thankful for that,” says Jeanne Monahan, president of March for Life, established four decades ago by the late Nellie Gray following the Roe Vs. Wade decision.
Members of the Republican National Committee — who will be attending their annual winter meeting in a nearby hotel — have also made time to march, along with Rick Santorum and Focus on the Family founder James Dobson. It is clear that the group draws interest from pro-life evangelicals as well as Catholics, and has a surprisingly strong following among high school and college students.
Despite such dynamics, the very well-attended march, which typically draws from 300,000-650,000 people, inspires little mainstream media interest. Even on its 40th anniversary last year, the event garnered a total of 15 seconds of coverage from NBC, ABC and CBS, this according to a Media Research Center analysis.
ROGERS ON THE SNOWDEN WATCH
Did NSA leaker Edward Snowden act alone or have help in his act? A Michigan Republican suggests the possibilities.
“This was a thief, who we believe had some help — who stole information — the vast majority of which had nothing to do with privacy. Our Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines have been incredibly harmed by the data he has taken with him, and we believe is now in the hands of nation states,” Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, told NBC News on Sunday.
“Some of the things he did were beyond his technical capabilities. That raises more questions. How he arranged travel before he left, how he was ready to go — he even had a go bag. I believe there’s a reason he ended up in the hands and loving arms of an … agent in Moscow. I don’t think that’s a coincidence,” Mr. Rogers said.
NANNYING THE NEWS
Even a billionaire ex-mayor must do something to keep busy? Like teach, speak, create a new foundation, travel? That is not what former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has in mind, however. Now three weeks out of office, and he’s already back at work at the Manhattan headquarters of Bloomberg News. Mr. Bloomberg showed up at every daily news meeting in recent days to have his say, and weigh in on the big stories; those meetings begin at 7:30 a.m., incidentally.
“Mr. Bloomberg’s dive back into the news side of the organization has not only caught employees by surprise, but it has also worried some that the division’s editorial independence could be called into question,” points out New York Times media writer Nathaniel Popper.
“There’s a discussion of the ethics of it,” a current Bloomberg employee told the paper. “There’s this feeling that no one is there to say no to him.”
‘REJOICING ABOUT THE GOOD’
“There are many who will mark the occasion of Dr. Martin Luther King’s day by lambasting America and the American people for not having done enough in the area of civil rights. The fact is, America is a decidedly changed and better place than the America that existed during the lifetime of Dr. King,” says Bishop Council Nedd II, the presiding bishop of Episcopal Missionary Church, and a founding member of Project 21, a network of black conservatives.
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