The Daily Muck

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The U.S. government claims they are doing all they can to prop up Iraqi security forces for an eventual hand off … one of these days. Yet the transitional path may be rockier than expected, according to an audit by the Pentagon that reveals many dead or inactive troops are on the Iraqi government payroll in an effort to support their families. (Associated Press)

Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is hearing calls for his swift impeachment, by fellow Democrats no less, for allegedly promising a job to a state finance official in exchange for campaign contributions. The official, Ali Ata, pleaded guilty to federal corruption charges, implicated the governor in the wrongdoing and is now expected to testify against Blagojevich ally Tony Rezko for accepting kickbacks from state businesses. (Chicago Sun-Times)

A faculty-led panel at the University of West Virginia is investigating the retroactive master’s degree given to the daughter of the state’s Gov. Joe Manchin in 2007. The panel issued a report saying there was no proof the recipient, Heather Bresch, earned the 1998 master’s degree of business administration. Bresch has said she completed the degree program fairly, yet her faculty advisor at the time says otherwise. (Associated Press)Two security contractors were fired by ArmorGroup North America Inc., after bringing to light falsehoods and misrepresentations by the company when it bid to secure the American embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. The men have filed a lawsuit against the company for wrongful termination after they pointed to budget concerns that they thought would compromise the safety of the embassy. The State Department has investigated the claims and say they are satisfied with the company’s actions. (Associated Press)

Citing high costs, Republicans who claimed to back tough voting fraud and inconsistency legislation have now voted against the Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act that came to the House last week. The bill aiming to require a paper trail for voting machines originally failed after the 2004 election and was re-introduced in January by Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ). On the bill’s most recent shortcomings, Holt said, “millions of voters will leave the 2008 election questioning the process and whether their vote means anything.” (Politico)

Two managers of an air traffic control facility in Dallas-Fort Worth have been reprimanded by the Federal Aviation Administration following an investigation into consistent infractions of FAA guidelines. Among other misconduct, the Transportation Department found that the two managers allowed planes to fly too close together, then called the action pilot errors or nonevents. This is the second time in three years the FAA has had to investigate managers in Texas. (Associated Press)