Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Blogger quits

Feminist blogger Amanda Marcotte last night announced her resignation from the staff of former Sen. John Edwards‘ 2008 presidential campaign, blaming Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, for the two-week uproar over her hiring by the North Carolina Democrat.

“I resigned my position today, and they accepted,” Miss Marcotte wrote at her site, www.pandagon.net, saying that she “was creating a situation where I felt that every time I coughed, I was risking the Edwards campaign.”

Mr. Donohue had urged Mr. Edwards to fire Miss Marcotte and a second campaign blogger, Melissa McEwan, whom he called “foul-mouthed bigots” for comments at their personal blogs. Miss Marcotte was widely criticized for a blog post in which she said that if the Virgin Mary had taken contraceptives, Christians would “have to justify your misogyny with another ancient mythology.”

Kate Bedingfield, a spokeswoman for the Edwards campaign, confirmed that Miss Marcotte was “no longer working for the campaign.” She declined additional comment to the Associated Press.

The conservative blogger known as Ace of Spades (https://ace.mu.nu) expressed suspicion that the resignation — four days after Mr. Edwards publicly defended both bloggers — might not have been Miss Marcotte’s idea: “If it’s really her own decision, why is she so angry about it? Couldn’t such anger have been avoided by, you know, not resigning? I know I’m going to be called crazy on this, but I have this weird conspiracy-theorist notion that sometimes people aren’t completely straight with us about the reasons for their separations from their employers.”

Mocking Gore

Czech President Vaclav Klaus, calling global warming a myth, criticized a U.N. panel as “a political body” with a “green flavor,” and suggested Al Gore is less than rational in his approach to the issue.

Mr. Klaus made his remarks in an interview with Hospodarske Noviny, a Czech economics daily.

He said the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is “neither a forum of neutral scientists nor a balanced group of scientists. These people are politicized scientists who arrive there with a one-sided opinion and a one-sided assignment.”

Finally, the interviewer asked the president, “Don’t you believe that we’re ruining our planet?”

“I will pretend that I haven’t heard you,” Mr. Klaus replied. “Perhaps only Mr. Al Gore may be saying something along these lines: A sane person can’t.”

The interview was translated into English by Harvard professor Lubos Motl.

Sen. James M. Inhofe, Oklahoma Republican, praised the Czech president yesterday.

“President Klaus is to be commended for his courage in speaking not only the truth about the science behind global-warming fears, but the reality of the politicization of the U.N.,” Mr. Inhofe said.

Backing Huckabee

Former South Carolina first lady Iris Campbell and one of her two sons have signed onto Republican Mike Huckabee‘s presidential campaign.

Iris Campbell was widowed in 2005 when former Gov. Carroll Campbell died after a public battle with Alzheimer’s disease. The former governor, who served two terms from 1987 to 1995, is credited with making the Republican Party a powerful force in South Carolina, and Iris Campbell remains influential throughout the state, the Associated Press reports.

“I think that if Carroll were here, he’d do the same,” Iris Campbell said.

Her son, Mike Campbell, who ran unsuccessfully last year for the lieutenant governor’s office, was tapped to run the former Arkansas governor’s South Carolina campaign as a senior national adviser.

Correcting the record

The Media Research Center’s Brent Baker, writing at www.mrc.org, says a Mississippi senator took the news media to task for giving a big story a Democratic spin.

“When, on Sunday’s ‘Face the Nation,’ host Bob Schieffer asserted that after the Senate debate over resolutions on Iraq ‘came to a halt, every newspaper in the country that I know about had a headline on the front page that said “Republicans block debate on Iraq war,” ‘ Republican Sen. Trent Lott corrected Schieffer and all the other misguided journalists: ‘That was totally incorrect.’

“A befuddled Schieffer asked about the spin which dominated the media early in the week: ‘How can all of them have been wrong?’ Lott explained: ‘Because we didn’t block debate. Actually, the vote was to continue debate.’

“Indeed, Senate Republicans wanted to allow votes on several proposed resolutions while the Democratic leadership wanted debate limited to two resolutions,” Mr. Baker said.

Gilmore makes hire

Former Virginia Gov. James S. Gilmore III has hired Kieran Mahoney, son of the founder of the New York Conservative Party, to head his Republican presidential-nomination quest.

“Kieran and I understand each other and the way conservative politics need to be addressed — and that I am a conservative you can count on,” Mr. Gilmore told Ralph Z. Hallow of The Washington Times yesterday.

Mr. Gilmore filed papers in January with the Federal Election Commission to form a presidential exploratory committee.

Mr. Mahoney helped George E. Pataki defeat 12-year incumbent Gov. Mario Cuomo in 1994, and also has advised former New York Sen. Alfonse D’Amato, former Kansas Sen. Bob Dole and North Carolina Sen. Elizabeth Dole, among others.

Mr. Mahoney’s father, the now-deceased J. Daniel Mahoney, and Charles Edison founded the Conservative Party of New York State in 1962.

New York, too

Key New York political leaders indicated yesterday they favor moving the state’s presidential primary up a month to Feb. 5 — a shift that could help the 2008 campaigns of Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Republican Rudolph W. Giuliani.

It “would be the right thing for the state,” an aide to the legislature’s top Democrat said.

A top aide to the legislature’s most powerful Republican said making such a shift was also on the GOP’s radar screen, the Associated Press reports.

Deja vu for Dodd

Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, Connecticut Democrat, was asked Sunday what he thinks would happen if American troops leave Iraq.

“Well, it can’t be any worse than it is today,” Mr. Dodd replied on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

Mr. Dodd’s words echoed his remarks from the Congressional Record of March 12, 1975: “The greatest gift our country can give to the Cambodian people is peace, not guns. And the best way to accomplish that goal is by ending military aid now.”

The subsequent communist takeover of Cambodia led, of course, to one of the great slaughters of the 20th century.

• Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/63-3285 or gpierce@washingtontimes.com.

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