Josh Marshall

Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Articles by Josh

Good sum-up from the Senate Majority Project. The RNC and the NH GOP have spent almost $6 million on lawyers in the phone-jamming case. I guess just out of the goodness of their hearts.

The grand ole daddy of special interest giveaways -- Congress to give away the Internet. This is serious. Find out more here.

Katherine Harris explains the misunderstanding ...

"At the time I had a meal with Mitchell Wade, I thought that my campaign would be reimbursing my share of the cost. I later discovered that somehow this was not done. I then discussed with my staff the best way to correct this oversight. Neither I nor my advisors ever thought it would be appropriate to reimburse Mr.Wade in the midst of the government investigations into his conduct. Just to resolve any questions, I have donated to a local Florida charity $100 which will more than adequately compensate for the cost of my beverage and appetizers.

"The night of our dinner, Mr. Wade purchased several expensive bottles of wine which he took home with him uncorked -- this is apparently the reason the bill was so high."

"I take full responsibility for this oversight and continue to operate under a policy of openness, transparency, and accountability to the people of my district and the state of Florida. While the rules are complicated, as a member of Congress, it is my responsibility to know and obey them. It has always been my intent to conduct myself in an ethical manner, and I regret this oversight."


Paul mentioned this below, in the context of another job Sen. Conrad Burns did for Ed Buckham in his role as go-to earmark lackey. But the underlying issue is really just too rich. It turns out that Buckham was a part owner of this company Map Roi, which I guess could have eventually put Buckham out of business, or still might have if the law hadn't caught up with Ed first.

The company was put together by some Abramoff/Buckham cronies in Guam. And they had a piece of software called GForce, which they billed as "Your complete system for winning government contracts."

(I think the Mighty-Morphing Power Rangers may use GForce or may be related to it in some way. But I'm not sure.)

So Buckham was getting earmarks for GForce through his man Burns. And GForce is a special piece of software that helps you bag more governments contracts. The whole thing I guess amounted to a sort of perpetual motion machine of earmark pork and insider scams.

We could just send the whole government home and let GForce send the tax dollars directly to Ed and Jack's sweatshop pals in the Marianas. Or more likely Neil Bush's company.

Of course, maybe Ed knew he couldn't keep ahead of the law forever so he invested in Map ROI to carry on his work after he become a ward of the state he had made so much money fleecing.

Should we be grateful there were no pics of the Harris-Wade dinner? I'm not even sure how to blurb this, other than to ask if this kid got her number.

NYT: "On another front, Republicans said that Tony Snow, a commentator for Fox News and a former speechwriter for Mr. Bush's father, was in negotiations for the job of White House press secretary. Mr. Snow would replace Scott McClellan, who announced Wednesday that he was resigning."

Why not just have Hannity do it?

In the Orlando Sentinel article below Katherine Harris dealt with her $2800 meal with felon Mitch Wade by giving a hundred bucks to Global Dominion Impact Ministries, an outfit which, as TPM Reader JG puts it, sounds like Bush administration foreign policy in a nutshell. Maybe that's next up after Global War on Terror.

It sounds like that money may go to good use since, as their website explains, the Ministries' "Pastor Sandra has an inspiring testimony of her deliverance from being sold to devils as an infant. She also shares her miraculous healing from her breast cancer as well as being raised from the dead. "


Late Update: The Ministries' Pastor Lourdes also brought someone back from the dead.

I really don't think I've ever seen a political train wreck quite like the Harris for Senate campaign. And in the political metaphor world these have been a rough few years in rail safety. So that's really saying something.

Anyway, during the last run of news about the implosion of the Harris campaign, I heard that one of the big reasons so many of Harris' top advisors were jumping ship was that they'd found out that she'd lied about some key points about her interactions with our old pal Mitch Wade. One of those things was whether he'd bought her a really fancy meal while he was wining and dining her.

This morning the Orlando Sentinel reports that meal may have cost "may have cost as much as $2,800."

And catch this passage ...

In her interview Wednesday, Harris acknowledged for the first time that Wade had paid for the dinner at Citronelle, reversing a statement from her congressional spokeswoman earlier this year.

But in the interview, Harris also said her campaign had, at some point, "reimbursed" the restaurant.

When asked how she could have reimbursed a business that was owed no money -- Wade paid the bill that evening -- she abruptly ended the interview and walked off.

Her spokesman called back an hour later and asked a reporter not to publish anything Harris had said Wednesday night about the dinner.

On Thursday, Harris' campaign released a two-paragraph statement that differed from her explanation a day earlier. It stated that Harris thought her "campaign would be reimbursing" her share of the meal but later found out that hadn't happened.

To resolve any questions, the statement said, "I have donated to a local Florida charity $100 which will more than adequately compensate for the cost of my beverage and appetizer."

Harris spokesman Chris Ingram said the donation was made Thursday to Global Dominion Impact Ministries. He would not answer any other questions about the dinner -- including the cost of the meal.

In case anyone's wondering, if any of you would like to take me out for a $3000 dinner, I'll be happy to defray the cost of the meal by giving a hundred bucks to the charity of my choice.

Also, I hear there's another Harris lie still waiting to bubble to the surface.