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December 10, 2009: At the feet of the Supreme Court, a group of Republican lawmakers holds a press conference to denounce the move to bring Guantanamo Bay detainees to the U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-IA) speaks above the placard: "Protect Our Homeland: Keep Terrorists Out of America." He was joined by several GOP colleagues and former public officials, including (from left to right) former U.S. Assistant Attorney Andrew McCarthy, Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN).

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Charles "Cully" Stimson, former deputy assistant secretary of defense for detainee affairs, speaks at the press conference. Stimson is something of a controversial figure. After offering a broad critique of the defense lawyers for Guantanamo detainees in 2007, he resigned.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), from eastern Texas.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC) had this to say about the detainees:



"This is what scares me because they're in a U.S. court now and the rights are different. What will they say [about their detention] and what could happen and could they be out among the people again? It's very frightening."

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Former U.S. Assistant Attorney Andrew McCarthy served in the southern district of New York where he led the prosecution of the 12 men convicted of the 1993 World Trade Center bombings.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




The President of the Center for Security Policy, Frank Gaffney Jr. has been a persistent critic of the administration's terrorism policies, penning an op-ed titled "America's First Muslim President" in The Washington Times.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), no stranger to attacks on Obama and Congressional Democrats, was also on hand.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com




Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) has not been shy about vocally bashing the administration on its security policies.

Jeff Malet / maletphoto.com

In 2007, the Defense Department paid the same private companies working on the Army's modernization program to tell the DOD how the program was going, according to a not-yet-public inspector general report.

Politico got an early look at the IG report, which notes that, between 1987 and 2007, the DOD's use of contractors for testing and quality control increased by 375 percent. The report finds that the trend toward privatization began in the 1990s, and continued through the Bush years.

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The Washington Post's opinion page editor defended the decision to run an op-ed by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

"She is someone who stirs discussion and we are in the business of putting out opinion. She reached out to us," the editor, Autumn Brewington, told Editor & Publisher.

Palin's op-ed, published Wednesday, called for President Obama to boycott international climate change talks in Copenhagen. It also called into question man's role in global warming and focused heavily on a series of leaked emails that climate change deniers say prove a conspiracy to hide evidence that the climate is cooling.

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The White House has released President Obama's prepared toast at the Nobel Banquet in Oslo. Here's the full text:

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Recently, Fox News has declared their intention to crack down on distortions, false statements and other such violations of proper journalistic behavior. They might not be off to the best start, though, with the new Fox News poll, containing an amazingly loaded question.

To be specific, here's what the poll asked: "What do you think President Obama would like to do with the extra bank bailout money -- save it for an emergency, spend it on government programs that might help him politically in 2010 and 2012, or return it to taxpayers?"

The basic assumption here, of course, is that the only reason Obama would want to spend money on the economy is to use the cash as a sort of political slush fund -- not simply saying that one disagrees with spending the money or thinks it's a bad idea, but that it is inherently illegitimate -- while saving the money or cutting taxes have purer motives.

Following the House's passage of a nearly $450 billion spending bill, Republican Whip Eric Cantor sent President Obama a letter calling on him to veto the bill. Here's the full text of the letter:

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has canceled a fund-raiser scheduled for this Saturday in New Orleans.

An aide to Reid's re-election campaign confirms to TPMDC that the fund-raiser, said to start at $1,000 a plate, has been canceled in order to keep the Senate working through the weekend.

Republicans took to the Senate floor this morning to demand that Reid keep the Senate in session over the weekend.

"The majority leader said we'd be working every weekend. We take him at his word. We expect to be here this weekend -- and we look forward to it," said Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Sens. John McCain and Mike Enzi joined the call.

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An influential progressive in the House of Representatives says that the public option compromise taking shape in the Senate might not survive the lower chamber--particularly if the Senate tries to jam its health care bill through the House.

In an interview this afternoon, Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) said he met with the Congressional Progressive Caucus' health care task force yesterday and they all agreed. "There is consensus within the progressive caucus," Grijalva said. "Personally I'm in agreement with them. I don't think very much of it."

"We're questioning whether you can define [what's coming out of the Senate] as a robust PO, and we don't think you can," he told me.

"There's rumors that we will skip conference--that we won't do conference--and bring their bill directly to the floor, and we are very, very opposed to that," Grijalva said.

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It looks like the oil lobby's bamboozlement habit is so ingrained that it extends even to cosmetic touches.

The website Astrotruth.org notes that an American Petroleum Institute pamphlet given out at a forum last week appears to show oil and gas industry employees as a racially diverse group of people.

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Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) tells Politico that he's not totally on board with a proposal to expand Medicare.

"I am increasingly troubled about the proposal," Lieberman said. "I am worried about what impact it will have on the Medicare program's fiscal viability and also what effect it will have on the premiums paid by people benefiting from Medicare now and whether the whole thing is viable. If you separate it from Medicare, it will be an extremely expensive program."

Lieberman had remained neutral on the buy-in proposal since it was brought up Tuesday night, saying he would wait to make a decision until he saw legislative language and a score from the Congressional Budget Office.

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