- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ratigan’s cause

More and more political talk-show hosts are becoming cause-oriented like the Fox News Channel’s Glenn Beck, and MSNBC anchor Dylan Ratigan has found his niche, too.

Mr. Beck, who has a popular talk-radio program as well as a 5 p.m. show on Fox, has been widely credited for the resignation of White House “green jobs czar” Van Jones and now, Mr. Ratigan wants a scalp, too. The former host of CNBC’s “Fast Money” launched his new 4 p.m. MSNBC program on Monday by going on the warpath against Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner.

“Instead of acting as our cop, Secretary Tim Geithner has become central to what may be a cover-up of the greatest theft in U.S. history,” Mr. Ratigan charged.

He then proceeded to outline five reasons, or “counts” as he called them, why the Treasury secretary should resign. These reasons included the recently released e-mails showing that the New York Federal Reserve instructed AIG to hide information from the public during his tenure and Mr. Geithner’s Christmas Eve decision to remove the $400 billion cap on how much money taxpayers could give to mortgage providers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to prevent their collapse.

And if that didn’t draw enough attention, Mr. Ratigan also posted an abbreviated transcript of his rant against Mr. Geithner on the liberal Huffington Post.

Hot Scott

Republican Scott Brown’s good looks have helped him win the women’s vote in at least one big election so far.

When Mr. Brown — now running for the open U.S. Senate seat from Massachusetts in a special election next week — was a 22-year-old law student at Boston College, he won Cosmopolitan’s “America’s Sexiest Man” contest. He was featured as a centerfold in the magazine’s June 1982 issue posing nude, albeit with an arm strategically placed for modesty’s sake.

At that time Mr. Brown told Cosmopolitan’s writers he was “a bit of a patriot.”

Although Cosmopolitan doesn’t cover politics much, its editors are pleased that Mr. Brown has gone onto political success. “Here at Cosmo we’ve had bachelors go on to be actors, models, and reality-show stars, so we’re thrilled that one has gone on to become a politician,” said Kate White, Cosmo’s editor in chief said a statement posted on the magazine’s blog.

Failing poll numbers

CNN released a poll on Tuesday that’s sure to cause some groaning over at the White House: 48 percent of those surveyed say Barack Obama’s presidency “is a failure so far.”

Forty-seven percent, on the other hand, say his presidency has been a “success.”

CNN’s polling director, Keating Holland, said in a statement released with the poll that although Mr. Obama is personally popular and is polling well on foreign policy and national security, the poor economy is dragging him down.

“Unfortunately for Obama, domestic issues — led by the economy — are far more important to the public than foreign-policy issues, and a majority disapprove of how he is handling every single economic and domestic issue tested,” Mr. Keating said.

Casey interrupted

Sen. Bob Casey, Pennsylvania Democrat, got an earful from angry anti-abortion protesters who ambushed him while he was opening an exhibit on Monday.

The senator, who is Catholic, went to the Pennsylvania state Capitol in Harrisburg to help unveil a photographic project about hunger and poverty, but protesters at the event had other ideas.

As Mr. Casey began to speak a young man stood up and shouted, “Do not trust this man. He funded abortion in other countries. China, Africa and America! You can’t feed the hungry if you kill them! Why are you killing children, sir?”

A video recording of the incident was uploaded to YouTube. It also showed three women who expressed similar sentiments by standing up and shouting loudly over Mr. Casey. All four of them were escorted away by Capitol Police, but not arrested, according to Pennsylvania news reports.

“They had their say. That is what this country is all about,” Mr. Casey said as they were led out of the exhibition area.

Mr. Casey describes himself as a pro-life Democrat, but many anti-abortion activists have taken issue with his support for a health care reform bill that would permit taxpayer dollars to fund abortion. Mr. Casey, for his part, argues that although the bill would do this, it will reduce the overall number of abortions.

Amanda Carpenter can be reached at [email protected]

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