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Corker Standing Against The Status Quo

Senator Bob Corker on the administration's budget estimate:
"This is not an honest view of our country's budget deficit and the administration knows it. Their failure to include a realistic assessment for war spending and refusal to make accurate assumptions about the alternative minimum tax is disappointing and does not set the right tone for having a serious discussion about our country's dire fiscal situation. As we rapidly approach $10 trillion in debt, we cannot continue to play games with how we look at our fiscal situation. "Both the White House and Congress are guilty of such gimmicks on a yearly basis, and it is time for it to stop. The American taxpayers deserve to be shown the true scope of our financial problems. Our country's resources have been mismanaged and the economic downturn we're experiencing will only make the situation worse. We need to work together on a bipartisan basis to overhaul our budget process, reform entitlement programs and restrain our spending."
Jul 30, 2008 7:31 AM

Secularists Love Obama

From the Hill:
More striking evidence of the cultural alignment comes in the dramatic changes affecting secular voters. Those who claimed no religious affiliation supported Gore by a six-point margin, Kerry by 36, and now give Obama a yawning 43-point advantage. Thus, the gap between the most secular voters and those who at least claim a religious affiliation is larger than ever.
Jul 30, 2008 7:24 AM

All Things To All People

Barack Obama declares himself an honorary Asian:
Born in Hawaii, raised for a time in Indonesia, Obama said his first college roommates were Pakistani and Indian. "Most importantly," he said, "I have a sister who is half Indonesian, who is married to a Chinese Canadian. I don't know what that makes my niece." "Being here is especially meaningful to me because I consider myself to be an honorary AAPI member, and I think I've got some pretty good credentials," he said. The event was jointly sponsored by the Asian American Finance Committee and the Democratic National Committee's AAPI Leadership Council, South Asian American Leadership Council and Indo-American Leadership Council. Event chairmen contributed or raised $33,100. Obama ditched his usual stump speech for a more focused talk on issues of interest to the audience. He promised health care initiatives geared toward Asian American problems, gave a full-throated endorsement of federal support for minority-owned businesses (just days after McCain backed state initiatives banning affirmative action), and promised to restore the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
Jul 30, 2008 7:20 AM

The Dark Prince Of Roman Catholicism

Get Religion discusses the role of faith in the life of journalist Robert Novak:
Novak was born Jewish and attended Christian services sporadically until the mid-1960s, after which he stopped going to religious services for nearly 30 years. But Novak said the Holy Spirit began to intervene in his life. . . . The turning point, as he recounts in his book, happened when he went to Syracuse University in New York to give a lecture. Before he spoke, he was seated at a dinner table near a young woman who was wearing a necklace with a cross. Novak asked her if she was Catholic, and she posed the same question to him. Novak replied that he had been going to Mass each Sunday for the last four years, but that he had not converted. Her response — “Mr. Novak, life is short, but eternity is forever” — motivated him to start the process of becoming a Catholic through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. He was baptized at St. Patrick’s Church in 1998.
Jul 30, 2008 7:15 AM

Taxing Memphis

Smart City Memphis says that local tax systems in several Tennessee counties are regressive:
The cumulative city-county tax rate for Memphians is $7.4732 per $100 of assessment; in Knoxville, it's $5.50; in Chattanooga, it's $5.356; and in Nashville/Davidson County, it's only $4.69. TACIR reported that the effective property tax rates were lowest in Sevier County at .35% benefiting from its strong tourism industry) to the highest in Shelby County at 1.29%. No other county had an effective tax rate of more than .95% and that was Nashville/Davidson County. A telling fact in the report is that the tax burden for a family of three in Tennessee's wealthiest county – Williamson County – pays only $230 a year. What makes that remarkable is that median value of housing there is $267,700 compared to $118,200 in Shelby County and median household income there is $94,372 annually compared to $54,924 in Shelby County.
Jul 30, 2008 7:12 AM


Alex Knepper asserts that Barack Obama's runningmate is unlikely to be Gov. Tim Kaine of Virgina.
Jul 30, 2008 7:05 AM

Revenue Wants Its Slice

Angelia reports that the Tennessee Department of Revenue is going after church yard sales:
“We’ve helped people on their power bills,” Barnett said. “We’ve helped people that have lost somebody in their family.” Last week, the church held its third  sale of the year.  The next day, a representative from the Tennessee Department of Revenue came calling.
Jul 30, 2008 7:03 AM

Red, Wine And Hot

Theo Emery writes up Red, Wine and Food's Senator Ketron appreciation event:
Word of the event was spread on the campaign’s Facebook page, drawing in about 50 people. The invitation promised “a break from the summer heat,” but a sweltering two-story atrium in a tony downtown apartment building on 2nd Avenue provided anything but. Fans roared overhead as attendees wandered back and forth shuttled between one table with platters of fruit and cheese, and a second tucked discreetly in the back with bottles of red and white wine. Campaign bumper stickers poked out of purses and pockets, and nametags drooped from lapels. At about 6 p.m., Jarron Springer, president of the Tennessee Grocers and Convenience Store Association, took the microphone to thank the attendees for coming. He said changing the law was a matter of common sense. “What it comes down to is, why not wine? Why not now?” Onlookers nodded appreciatively, and Springer introduced the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Bill Ketron, a Murfreesboro Republican. “Let me ask a question right off the bat: who likes wine?”
Jul 29, 2008 10:46 PM

Our Bad

The House of Representatives apologizes for slavery -- thanks to Steve Cohen. Bob Tuke, Democratic U.S. Senate candidate, wants in on the mea culpas:
"I am thankful for the efforts of Congressman Cohen and others in delivering this long overdue apology to the African-American community," said Tuke. "It is my fervent hope and prayer that this resolution brings about another milestone in our nation's effort to fight the remnants of prejudice and bigotry from an era of injustice. As counsel for Meharry Medical College in Nashville, and other clients, I have witnessed the African-American community overcome great obstacles to achieve ever greater accomplishments, and I hope that this progress continues as we pursue equality in all respects so as to become a united community."
SEE ALSO: Mediaverse Sharon Cobb Old Broad
Jul 29, 2008 9:47 PM

Blackburn Really Doesn't Have A Good Answer For TV Newsman

The Watchdog Mike Matthews confronts Rep. Marsha Blackburn on her controversial mailer accusing her opponent Tom Leatherwood of supporting free health care for illegals:
Jul 29, 2008 8:41 PM