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Well, we're just over a week from the Presidential election so it's time for our friends in the White House to raise the specter of terrorists in our midst.  Here's Mike Chertoff, New Jersey's finest export to the Department of Homeland Security.

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says the federal government is monitoring "dozens" of potential terrorists in the United States.
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Chertoff tells The Record of Bergen County the government has quietly blocked "dozens" of potential terrorists from entering the country in recent years.

Chertoff says he can't say for sure whether the people kept out would have carried out a plot.

The New Jersey native says America is still a terrorist target. Chertoff says there is a risk that some would see opportunity during the transition between administrations.

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Sun Oct 26, 2008 at 04:33 AM PDT

McCain's Shockingly Tone-Deaf Attack

by huntsu

On Thursday Barack Obama was in Hawaii with his grandmother, knowing he was seeing her for the last time in his life.  Because he was running for President Obama had to leave her side as she was dying, get on a plane and go back to speaking to the American people about the Presidency and how important a choice they are making.

John McCain has this to say:  "What America needs now is someone who will finish the race before starting the victory lap," McCain said to the crowd of several thousand at a rally here. "Someone who will fight to the end, not for himself but for his country."

A victory lap?  Visiting your dying grandmother in the same apartment you grew up in is a victory lap?  How tone deaf can McCain be?

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Sat Oct 25, 2008 at 06:12 AM PDT

Endorsements of Obama All About Race

by huntsu

It's almost a week late, but I have a job and other stuff like family and getting out the vote, but here is my response to the jackasses on the right who said Colin Powell's endorsement of Barack Obama was "all about race."

There are more, of course, but there's only so much time I can dedicate to this.

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Fri Oct 24, 2008 at 04:46 AM PDT

NJ House Races Ready To Rumble

by huntsu

The campaigns filed their October 1 to October 15 Federal Election Committee results yesterday.  We've got a real shot at taking two of them, and may be able to pick up a third against the odious right wing troll Scott Garrett.

Here's New Jersey's three top takeaway district results with a brief analysis of each at the end.  

Poll

Will New Jersey Democrats Win

15%3 votes
0%0 votes
42%8 votes
42%8 votes
0%0 votes

| 19 votes | Vote | Results

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UPDATE III: For those who think I am fear mongering, that's not the intent here.  What I am doing is wondering the the four incidents described are connected by some whacko or whackos to influence the race.  The WKU update appears to be totally unrelated, but I don't know about the others.  Even false threats like baby powder mail and bomb threats with no bombs can still terrorize and impact the election.

UPDATE IV: The Treasury Department in Jersey City, NJ also got suspicious powder in the mail.

Earlier today we noted that a number of Chase banks had been sent envelopes with suspicious powders in them over the past few days.  The envelopes came, apparently, from Texas.

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Sun Oct 19, 2008 at 01:53 PM PDT

Shiite Leaders: Get Out By 2011

by huntsu

It looked like there was going to be a deal made between Iraq and the United States over keeping foreign troops in Iraq beyond the United Nations mandate.  However, today there appears to be a spanner tossed in the hole when Shiite leaders announced they want an exit date of 2011.

The Iraqi parliament's biggest political bloc is calling for all American troops to leave this country by the end of 2011 as a condition for approving a new agreement extending the U.S. military presence in Iraq, a senior official said Sunday.

The United Iraqi Alliance is also insisting that Iraq have a bigger role in determining whether U.S. soldiers accused of wrongdoing are subjected to prosecution in Iraqi courts.

If the conditions are not met, "I cannot see that this agreement will see the light," said Sami al-Askeri, a Shiite parliamentarian and political adviser to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

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I know others have diaries about this, and I apologize, but I want to focus on a part of John McCain's defense of G. Gordon Liddy that I didn't see in other diaries.  I think it's important enough that it is more than a comment.  Here's what McCain said on the Letterman show last night:

"Did you not have a relationship with Gordon Liddy?" Letterman asked about Watergate burglar G. Gordon Liddy.

McCain said he knew him. Then, after a commercial break, McCain said, "I know Gordon Liddy. He paid his debt, he went to prison ... I'm not in any was embarrassed to know Gordon Liddy."

http://

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Thu Oct 16, 2008 at 01:36 PM PDT

We Shouldn't Need To Get To 60 Senators

by huntsu

Apparently Barack Obama sent out an e-mail for the DSCC today urging people to help raise $2.5 million to go to Senate races.  The hope is that the infusion of funds would put the Democrats over the 60 vote threshold to be able to beat back any filibusters from the GOP.

I'm as eager to get to 60 votes as well, but I really wish we didn't need to get to 60 votes.  This isn't some stupid appeal for bipartisanship or centrism, but a real desire to see the Democrats act like a majority party instead of the mewing band of simpering wimps they've been for the past eight years.

If we win five or six seats, even with tossing Lieberman over the side to the GOP where he belongs, we'll have 55 seats to the Republican's 45.  That means that over the last six years the American people have said that they prefer to have Democrats running the United States Senate.

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I was really surprised to see this in a Hill report on Levi Johnston, the boy who is the father to Bristol Palin's baby and will be her husband.

Johnston has since dropped out of high school to become an apprentice in Alaska's oil fields, and he and Bristol Palin will wed in December. "I'm still the same old boy," Johnston said. "I'm just a workin' man."

He's dropped out of high school?  Why?  He doesn't need to work to pay for a home or medical care for Bristol and her pregnancy.  Bristol's living at home, her parents make hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in a cheap state to live in, and the Governor's insurance covers it all.

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Sat Oct 11, 2008 at 04:54 AM PDT

Redemption Song

by huntsu

The McCain/Palin attacks on Obama's connections to William Ayers once again put the lie to the right wing Christian mantra.  These "Christians" repeatedly talk of redemption, of how no matter how terrible people have acted they can be redeemed.

But they don't seem to want to give that kind of redemption to Ayers, who committed stupid, illegal and violent acts 35 years ago.  But since then he has been married to the same woman, raised two children of his own, taken responsibility for another, kept out of trouble, and worked hard to ensure our country and Chicago provided better education to our children.

But that's not the kind of redemption the Palin types want.  They want gnashing of teeth and wrending of clothes in public, not a life turned around that provides value for the community and is based on morality.  No, morality is not important.

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Though its sponsor voted against the larger bailout bill, one provision seems to be pretty good -- a $20 per month credit for bicycle commuters. The primary sponsor, Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, is please the piece got in but couldn't vote for the bailout after getting a ton of calls and letters from constituents.

But there's one major flaw in the piece: it is funded by an offset of corporate taxes.  

Come January, bike commuters will receive a monthly credit of up to $20 that can be spent on maintaining, repairing or buying bicycles.

Employers, many of whom have long provided tax-free parking and transit benefits, will establish how they administer the cycling tax credit, Ms. Graves said. Employers will be able to deduct the credit from their corporate taxes.

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Wed Oct 08, 2008 at 03:47 PM PDT

Gimme Your Tax Returns, Cindy!

by huntsu

The headline for Washington Wire at the Wall Street Journal Cindy McCain Goes on Attack, Too.  It's all about how she is now a spokeswoman for the McPalin campaign and engaging in her own malicious slanders against Obama.

The mother of four, including two sons in the military, challenged Democrat Barack Obama to "change shoes" for a day. "The day that Sen. Obama decided to cast a vote to not fund my son when he was serving sent a cold chill through my body," she said

McCain’s charge is based on a single vote Obama cast as a senator. Factcheck.org called the claim "misleading" based on the fact that Obama voted in favor of troop funding on 10 different occasions. The only time he voted against it was a vote in which President Bush vetoed a version that included a date for withdrawal.

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