Monday, February 25, 2008

They Write Press Releases

Al From:

Spirited political debate always has been - and always should be - essential to the conduct of our nation's business. But the big ideas that have changed America - from the G.I. Bill to the Voting Rights Act, from Medicare to welfare reform - earned support from both parties and were the products of negotiation and compromise.

It is a sad truth that too frequently Washington focuses on the war of sound bites rather than engaging in constructive debate to build real-world solutions. We hope that today's debate and those that follow will change that.

Representatives Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.) and Adam Putnam (R- Fla.) deserve credit for trying to move past the hyper-partisan atmosphere on Capitol Hill. At the DLC, we are delighted to work with the Congressional Institute and the leadership of both the Democratic Caucus and the Republican Conference to foster the kind of frank, substantive discussion that is so often missing in today's Washington - the kind of debate that is necessary to forge solutions to America's biggest challenges.

This Adam Putnam:

Putnam Emerges As GOP's Top Aggressor
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By BILLY TOWNSEND The Tampa Tribune

Published: Feb 20, 2007

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LAKELAND - It was Tony Snow, the Fox News anchor-turned-presidential spokesman, who in effect ended the recent scandalette over whether the military plane that would fly Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi back and forth to California was too luxurious.

"This is a silly story, and I think it's been unfair to the speaker," Snow said, according to published reports. He was countering voices in his own party.

One of the most prominent was U.S. Rep. Adam Putnam, R-Bartow. Putnam, the third-ranking House Republican, had pushed the Pelosi story aggressively the day before, both in print and on television.

"This is not about having secure communications and secure aircraft available to her. It's about an arrogance of extravagance that demands a jumbo jet that costs $22,000 an hour to operate to taxi her and her buddies back and forth to California," Putnam told Fox News.

It turns out there's no evidence Pelosi requested any such thing. A day after Snow's remarks, the nonpartisan House sergeant-at-arms released a written statement explaining that for security reasons he asked for a plane that could carry Pelosi nonstop to her home in San Francisco, a much longer distance than former Speaker Dennis Hastert, of Illinois, had to cover.