TPMDC Sunday Roundup

Mullen: Gitmo Needs To Be Closed
Appearing on ABC’s This Week, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen reaffirmed his belief that the prison at Guantanamo Bay should be closed. “The concern I’ve had about Guantanamo in these wars is it has been a symbol, and one which has been a recruiting symbol for those extremists and jihadists who would fight us. So and I think that centers — you know, that’s the heart of the concern for Guantanamo’s continued existence, in which I spoke to a few years ago, the need to close it.”

Obama’s Day: Camp David
President Obama has been spending the weekend at Camp David, and is scheduled to arrive back at the White House tonight at 10 p.m. ET. He does not have any public events scheduled. Vice President Biden is in Wilmington, Delaware, and also does not have any scheduled public events.Durbin: SCOTUS Pick Likely This Week
Appearing on NBC’s Meet The Press, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) affirmed that the Supreme Court nomination could come this week. “Well, I, I’ve been told it’s likely to come this week, but I don’t know which day,” said Durbin. He also pointed to President Obama’s background as a constitutional law professor as an asset in picking a nominee: “I would hate to go through that interview on constitutional issues with our president, because he knows a lot more about the Constitution than many people who serve as judges today”

Gingrich: Gitmo Should Remain Open Until “The Terrorists Disappear”
Appearing on NBC’s Meet The Press, former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) was asked by David Gregory how long the prison camp at Guantanamo Bay should remain open. “Until the war is over,” said Gingrich. When asked what that means, Gingrich explained: “We’ll — when the terrorists disappear.”

Kyl: Obama’s Claims On Gitmo “Culpably False”
Appearing on Fox News Sunday, Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-AZ) said President Obama made false claims about Guantanamo. “When the president said in his speech that it — that the existence of Gitmo probably created more terrorists than have ever been held there, he meant to say that 770 people or more became terrorists because we have a prison at Guantanamo,” said Kyl. “We called his press secretary, Robert Gibbs, and asked for information about the charges that he’d made in his speech. We haven’t heard back yet. This is a false charge. In fact, it’s culpably false.”

Powell: “I Am Still A Republican”
Appearing on CBS’ Face The Nation, former Sec. of State Colin Powell said he is still a Republican. “Rush will not get his wish. And Mr. Cheney was misinformed. I am still a Republican,” said Powell. “And I’d like to point out that in the course of my 50 years of voting for presidents, I have voted for the person I thought was best- qualified at that time to lead the nation. Last year I thought it was President-now Barack Obama.”

Ridge To Limbaugh: Don’t Be Divisive
Appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, former Sec. of Homeland Security Tom Ridge offered some criticism of Rush Limbaugh. “It does get the base all fired up and he’s got a strong following,” said Ridge. “But personally, if he would listen to me and I doubt if he would, the notion is express yourself but let’s respect others opinions and let’s not be divisive.”

Ridge Doesn’t Endorse Toomey — Nor Rules Out Voting For Specter
Also during his State of the Union appearance, Tom Ridge again did not endorse Republican candidate Pat Toomey for the 2010 Pennsylvania Senate race — and didn’t rule out a vote for newly-minted Democrat Arlen Specter. “I’m a strong, strong Republican but I’d be — I’ve never, ever, ever voted straight Republican ticket in my life and I never will,” Ridge continued,” said Ridge.