Monday, September 06, 2010

Buying Influence In Washington, On The Campaign Trail With Michele Bachmann, And A Craigslist Update

Hi everyone! Did you all check out my four year anniversary post? To those who left such sweet comments, you have turned me into sugary goo! I now need someone to scoop me up with a spoon so I can operate the bullet points of awesomeness. I hope you're proud of yourselves.
  • I was pretty impressed with tonight's first segment. The 360 kids decided to tackle and flesh out this story in the New York Times on corporations who gain influence by donating to congressional charities. It's one of those tedious non-sexy stories that cable news usually passes over--even though it gets at the very heart of how Washington works, thus affecting all of our lives. So big props to them for the effort.
  • My one quibble (of course I have a quibble!) is with the heavy framing against Nancy Pelosi. I understand why they went there (it's so easy!), but I do think it is a tad unfair to the Democrats to not make it perfectly clear that they did in fact pass massive ethics reform when they took over the House. You can argue that what they passed didn't go far enough (duh), but do we remember the Republican-controlled house? It just bugs me because I know the only thing the average person is going to take away from this is that Nancy Pelosi promised to "drain the swamp" and then did absolutely nothing, which isn't quite true. Let's be specific, kids!
  • Also, this from Anderson Cooper: "Now, despite all the hand-wringing about it and promises by Democrats to change Washington, it seems like there are more and more congresspeople creating charities and taking donations from big companies looking to buy influence." Seems like? Well, are there or aren't there? And why would that be?
  • The discussion with article author Eric Lipton and former congressman Mickey Edwards is below.

  • Gary Tuchman hung out with Michele Bachmann for us (my condolences!), and we learned that the congresswoman is capable of walking very fast in heels. Yeah, that was pretty much my big take-away. I'm a bit comfuzzled as to why Team Gary had to use up their frequent flier miles traveling to Minnesota, given that Bachmann only granted them a whole two questions (ooh!). But Gary did get to talk with opponent state Senator Tarryl Clark and others, so there's that. Still. A part of me wishes that if a politician shuns the press, the press would do the same to them. Oh well. I hope Team Gary at least got a funnel cake out of this.

  • Ugh. Panel. John King, Ed Rollins, David Gergen, and John Ridley.
  • The Gerg on what happens to Obama if Republicans take back the House: "Well, in the first place, he's not going to be able to get his liberal agenda through." Um, excuse me? What "liberal" agenda? You mean like when he passed health care reform without even a public option?

  • I was a bit bored by Tom Foreman's segment. I guess demon sheep has ruined me for all other political ads.

  • The Craigslist update with Amber Lyon and Jeff Toobin was pretty good. I liked Anderson's devil's advocacy.

  • Isha Sesay returns! Yay! Do you love Isha and want her to stay with us forever? Well, sign the petition! Seriously. It was created by Chris Sosa after some demanding a polite request from yours truly. Why not, right? And yes, it's Isha-approved (I think she's getting quite a kick out of this). If nothing else she will have nice messages to read. Go add yours!
  • That'll do it. Show wasn't bad.

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