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Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

Author, former Secretary of the Navy and now Democratic candidate for Senate from Virginia, Jim Webb, has just posted a guest post over at TPMCafe on Reagan Democrats and how to bring them back to the Democratic Party. He'll be online for the next hour (6-7 PM Eastern time) responding to reader comments. So if you're interested in this topic, and especially if you'd like to ask a question, definitely stop by now.

You won't want to miss this.

Yesterday we told you about new Post blogger Ben Domenech's dad, Doug, who was and I think still is the White House's liaison to the Department of Interior.

We printed excerpts from a piece that appeared in the Denver Post, which made Domenech seem like an Abramoff puppet, or rather a puppet by proxy through Italia Federici.

Now, a reader wrote in to tell me about another piece in the Washington Post which gives a somewhat different version of events, generally and in relation to Doug Domenech.

I'm not in a position to say which piece is more accurate. But if you're interested in the topic, certainly check out the WaPo piece too.

This might even qualify as a legitimate use of the word 'balance'.

Fall of Ralph Watch.

According to a new poll out today in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Ralph Reed is dragging down the (Gov) Perdue (Lt.Gov) Reed ticket by 8 points among likely voters.

Actually, as long as we're on the topic. I'm trying to think of the list of pols whose careers appear to be ending or near ending as a result of the Abramoff scandal.

So far I've got Ralph Reed, Conrad Burns, Katherine Harris and Bob Ney. Tom DeLay is another obvious contender. But that's muddled by the fact that his own independent crimes appear to have brought him down first. Who am I not thinking of?

Late Update: Okay, my bad. This is an occupational danger of tracking all the various threads of GOP criminality. It's the Duke Cunningham scandal, not the Abramoff scandal, that seems to be putting the nail in Katherine Harris' political coffin.

More signs that those mysterious White House MZM contracts were tied to the president's private Iraq intel commission.

Little did I know this Ben Domenech gambit from the Post was a secret plot to create the grist for more Abramoff blogging.

You see, it turns out the Domenech family came in for a number of Bush administration appointments. Not only Ben, but Ben's dad, Doug, who was White House liaison to the Department of Interior.

Or to put it more colloquially, White House guy to make sure Jack Abramoff got what he wanted with the Indians and the Pacific Island stuff.

Wayne Smith was the point man for Indian casino policy at the Department of Interior. He ended up having kind of a rough ride over at Interior. And, according to Smith, as reported last year in the Denver Post, Domenech told him "we had to pay attention to [Jack] Abramoff, because otherwise the religious right and (Ralph) Reed are going to come up and bite us, and our whole base will go crazy. They will light up our phones, shut down our phone lines."

According to Smith, Domenech was the conduit for Abramoff operative Italia Federici. Said Smith: "Doug would come down and say, 'Italia called and Jack wants this' That's how it all happened internally."

Probably not the last fun quote from these quarters.

Admittedly, my post below on the Washington Post was a bit stern. So just to show I'm not all hard-hearted and a scold, a couple other opportunities for balance at the Post occurred to me.

Tom Edsall, to be balanced by Ben Ginsberg.

Walter Pincus, to be balanced by Pat Roberts.

Anyone else have other suggestions?

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