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GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

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The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

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FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

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Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

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EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...

By David Edwards on 8/10/2005 2:01pm PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards

The BRAD BLOG has learned that Cindy Sheehan has refused to do an interview tonight on Fox's O'Reilley Factor. On a conference call with bloggers this afternoon, Sheehan responded to a question from CrooksandLiars...

Crooks and Liars: I posted the video of O'Reilly and Malkin attacking you. Are you going on his show?

Cindy Sheehan: No. I don't like it when people lie about me. He attacks me personally about it. He asked me to go on show. My first reaction is that I'll go on if he publicly apologizes for lying about me. But my second reaction is I won't go on at all because his show is an obscenity.

Our true mission is bringing attention to the occupation of Iraq and bringing our troops home. The Bush Administration doesn't have the support of the majority of America. We do.

Right-wing media and blogs have put considerable effort into swift-boating Cindy Sheehan over the last few days. Check out what ThinkProgress has to say about O'Reilly and Michelle Malkin's attempt to smear Sheehan. Atrios comments on Drudge's baseless attack.

We wonder if the president's odd behavior, speech and appearance at yesterday's so-called press conference may have been caused by his fear of dealing with the situation developing outside his Crawford palatial estate ranch. (CrooksandLiars has a video clip.)

Skinner at DemocraticUnderground has quickly put together a transcript of this afternoons blogcall with Cindy Sheehan.

UPDATE: Media Matters has begun tracking lies about Sheehan through the conservative media. Joe Trippi has provided audio of today's BlogCall which we have happily reposted here.

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The Rats Will Play!
By Winter Patriot on 8/9/2005 8:46pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Winter Patriot

Valley Girl has suggested an Open Thread, and we haven't had one in a while, so:

Hey VG! This Open Thread's for you! It's also for 6 or 7 other loyal BRAD BLOG readers, of course.

Please join me in extending a warm welcome to the other members of the powerful triumvirate: Joseph Cannon and David Edwards. Hi, guys! Welcome aboard!!

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By Brad Friedman on 8/9/2005 3:52pm PT  

The archives from last Saturday's Special Edition of The BRAD SHOW commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act are now available at --- I hope you'll try to give the entire show a listen. We're very proud of that one. And you can find out whether the rumors are true about an impending marriage between myself and Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney. Also, interviews with Rev. Jesse Jackson (who I will not be marrying), Sam Walker of the National Voting Rights Museum in Selma, Keenan Keller of the House Judiciary Committee, Leon Smith of Lone Star Iconoclast as Cindy Sheehan was just taking up camp in Crawford and words from Rep. John Lewis, the recently passed Rev. Bill Moss and even Dr. Martin Luther King.

Other than that, I'm outta here for a bit. For some too much needed R&R for as long as I can get it! (Either that, or I'm now on the run since my CIA cover has been blown!)

In my stead here at BRAD BLOG will be much fine Guest Blogging from the estimable Joseph Cannon of CANNONFIRE, The BRAD SHOW's not-so-secret-weapon David Edwards (making his blogging debut!), and of course, the tireless and faithful BRAD BLOG Concierge, Winter Patriot, will be on duty as well! A powerful triumvirate of trouble-makers, muckrakers, and truth tellers!

All in all, with that line-up, I just hope you'll want me back when I return. Be nice while I'm gone! Or I will turn this car right around! Do you understand me?!


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Stunning Revelations from Fintan Dunne Shocks Even Us!
(Still awaiting our paychecks though!)
By Brad Friedman on 8/9/2005 12:24pm PT  

We were informed last Friday that is one of many "CIA Internet Fakes" as's Editor (and theoretically, a "reporter") Fintan Dunne has reported it.

While we learned of our covert CIA operative status late last Friday, as we were deep in the throes of preparing our radio show, we haven't had time to share the shocking news with you until now. As well, we thought we'd give Dunne a chance to reply to our emailed inquiry on how he came to his ingenious discovery before we posted an item that might result in his looking like a completely clueless boob. (Psst.... That's what actual reporters do before running with an item, Fintan. They attempt to get comment from those they are reporting on ... we're just sayin'.)

Sadly, Dunne failed to reply to our inquiry as he has done in several past instances when he even more egregiously misrepresented/misreported on our work in his "EXCLUSIVE" article on our Clint Curtis reporting.

Even as Fintan Dunne's credibility dies once and for all (did he ever actually have any?) with his silly and wholly unintelligible report, we scratch our head in wonder as we see our good friends at and and scores of others also on the list of CIA Operatives! Who knew?!

And to make things even more confusing, apparently our CIA paycheck is earned for our clever disinfo-filled reporting on 9/11 ... About which we don't believe we've actually ever reported, beyond one or two minor items linking to someone or something else. But why pick nits?

Joseph Cannon, who actually deserves to be on Dunne's list, has a few thoughts on it all. His are actually intelligent. As opposed to either Dunne's or ours on this matter. But Cannon is probably just jealous since he was not included on the list. ;-)

Of course, if we were on the CIA payroll, we'd probably respond to Dunne's silly contentless article shocking expose by writing an article precisely such as this one ... to make light of it all in order to distract from Dunne's having unearthed the whole clever scheme, wouldn't we?

So now, you, dear reader, don't really know what to believe any more, do you? Is The BRAD BLOG really a CIA operative or not? You'll never know, because even if we were, we'd never be able to admit it, would we?

And with all of that said, if we actually are in the pay of the CIA, we'd really appreciate it if they'd fork it over! We're frickin' starving over here for chrissakes! Or are we?! ;-) --- Either way, we'd love it if they finally paid us (and we'd love your help as well, just in case we're not actually on their payroll) via our double super-secret covert P.O. Box:

Brad Friedman
7095 Hollywood Blvd., #594
Los Angeles, CA 90028

The CIA --- or "The Firm" as NOCs like us call our place of employment --- may also feel free to pay us online with PayPal!

We'll take it! And we'd much appreciate it! And Fintan? ... Get some help, friend. Seriously....

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Word of Impending Arrest Swirls Around Cindy Sheehan in Crawford...
As the Wingnuts slither out to give the Swiftboat Treatment to a Mother who made the ultimate sacrifice.
By Brad Friedman on 8/8/2005 10:45pm PT  

David Swanson of says Sheehan told him the Secret Service told her (through a complicated grapevine) that she'd be arrested on Thursday as a "threat to National Security." According to Swanson via DailyKos, Sheehan told him as they unravelled the rumors...

"I think we need as many people here on Thursday anyway, because Rice and Rumsfeld will be here....I'd rather not get arrested, but I'm willing to, I'm willing to have them pick me up and carry me away."

Benjamin T. Greenberg at Hungry Blues has some more thoughts and analysis and tales of speeding Secret Service vehicles whizzing by.

While Bob Harris wonders if --- unlike Dubya, apparently --- you might be able to spot the real threat to National Security.

And Cindy gets her own website.

It's all clearly having an impact, since Drudge and the Rightwing Slime Machine slithered back out from under their rocks today to give Sheehan the Paul O'Neil/Richard Clarke/Joe Wilson/ScottRitter/Et Al Treatment. As this report on Drudge's attempted Swiftboating of Sheehan correctly points out, Drudge didn't bother to give the actual context for the quotes he used from Sheehan. But no matter, it was enough to call them to arms to try and destroy the character and reputation of a mother who mad the ultimate sacrific for her country.

And, of course, the Wingnuts also don't bother to point out that Sheehan's original comments were made prior to Bush's own Dulfer Report, showing there were no WMD's in Iraq, and the Downing Street Memos, showing Bush lied us into this War, having come to light.

How many lives, of how many great Americans has this bunch of criminals in the White House now destroyed via their loathesome, selfish, personal quest to avoid taking any responsibility for their own horrific failures and utter inability to govern with even the slightest shred of competence, effectiveness or compassion?

George W. Bush: Worst "President" Ever, indeed. It's no longer a contest.

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By Brad Friedman on 8/8/2005 6:33pm PT  

Appeared earlier this afternoon on KVI 570am Fox News Radio in Seattle. Ostensibly, I was told the interview would concern the ACVR scammers. They had ACVR's liar-in-chief, "Thor" Hearne on the show last Friday but apparently Thor didn't want me to be on with him for some reason.

Turns out the host, John Carlson had a hard-on for Photo ID restrictions at the polls, despite all evidence that there's no particular epidemic problem of Voter Fraud in this country that Photo ID would in any way solve. It would, however, disenfranchise many Democratic-leaning voters, of course. All of which is the mission of the ACVR, as you all likely know by now.

In anycase, I did my best to bring to truth to Carlson's "Fox News Treatment". Give the 22 minute interview [MP3] a listen and let me know what you think and how I did. We record, you decide...

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'Dem' ACVR Supporter Also a Bush/Cheney Supporter
(un)American Center for Against Voting Rights Continues Campaign of Lies on Behalf of GOP...
By Brad Friedman on 8/8/2005 8:47am PT  

The "Roger Ailes" blog does some fine Googling on the supposed American Center for Voting Rights (ACVR) "Democrat" who was used in last week's flurry of hoax Press Releases to promote their hoax report on "Election Fraud" in the 2004 Election attempting to hoax America into believe that "paid Democrat operatives were far more involved in voter intimidation and suppression activities than were their Republican counterparts during the 2004 presidential election."

Nonetheless, the Rightwing Blogosphere keeps attempting to flog the story, despite so much documented evidence to show that the ACVR's a complete scam run by high-level GOP operatives hoping to distract from the real Election Fraud and myriad of Irregularities last November committed by their paymasters from Team Bush/Cheney.

After finally finding a "Democrat" that the ACVR could quote from in hopes of misleading and distracting from the fact that the self-proclaimed "non-partisan" group of high-level GOP operatives is actually anything but, it turns out that the use of this "Democrat" is simply more disinformation from these disdainful anti-American, democracy-hating ratfuckers. They're still hoping to spoof the country into believing they are "Voting Rights" advocates rather than pure, unabashed Republican operatives (in the worst sense of the word) hoping to distract from the mountain of GOP "Election Irregularties" last November and further disenfranchise millions of more American voters through their insidious schemes to keep potential Democratic voters from being able to actually cast a vote on Election Day.

Ailes finds, amongst other things, that Brian Lunde, the "Democrat" in question, whose phony quotes were used in all six press releases (same quote each time with just one or two words changed, Pentagon-style) is actually a Bush 2004 supporter, and so is his wife.

In addition to thousands of dollars given to Bush by the couple in 2004, Lunde is also a member of the Zell Miller-founded "Democrats for Bush" and a funder of the G.O.P. political action committee "Freshman PAC" whose goal, Ailes points out, is to "Maintain a Republican Majority." Ailes aptly adds: "That's the dream of all true Democrats, don'tcha know?"

Read Ailes' report, and then notice that the desperate phony seaman "Captain Ed" of the wingnut blog "Captain's Quarters" still can't seem to admit that in falling for the ACVR's phony report he has made a complete, unapologetic jackass of himself. Though as previously reported, he's not the only one. (Here and here, by the way, are two other recent examples --- of many --- not previously reported. The America-hater who runs the blog at that last link is so pathetic, in fact, that while he calls himself ironically, "The Machete of Truth", apparently "truth" for that loser includes not only linking to ACVR's phony report, but actually deleting the comment we left on his little disinfo blog pointing him to the correct info about ACVR! Further, because of that, he's now requiring that all comments left on his propaganda pages be "approved" before they are posted. Can these guys get any more pathetic? We're guessing they can...)

Oh...and one more Wingnut Doofus deserves special recognition for his very hard work on behalf of the American Center for Voting Rights liars. Democracy-hating Steve Bowers, "Senior Editor" of "Pardon My English" has posted part two of what is now a promised three-part effort to help ACVR spread their un-American horseshit. The latest chapter is entitled, "DEMOCRATS CAN'T DENY THE FACTS DOCUMENTED IN ACVR REPORT," though it might more aptly be titled "STEVE BOWERS WON'T LET ANY COMMENTERS POST FACTS WHICH DEBUNK THE ACVR HOAX". Don't believe us? Click here, leave a comment pointing the lying Mr. Bowers to in a comment and wait around to see if he'll allow it to be posted (we know he hasn't allowed any of ours to be posted so far). When you're lying, and have no case, we suppose it's imperative to allow no dissenting information. But we wouldn't know. We just tell the truth and leave the bullshit to chickenshits and chickenhawks like Bowers and the "Machete of Truth" who are always welcome to leave a dissenting viewpoint on The BRAD BLOG.

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at
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Refuses to Meet with Cindy Sheehan in Crawford
'Ultimate Sacrifice' Not Enough to Distract 'President' from Vacation
By Brad Friedman on 8/7/2005 5:29pm PT  

"If he doesn't come out and talk to me in Crawford, I'll follow him to D.C. I'll camp on his lawn in D.C. until he has the courtesy and the integrity and the compassion to talk to somebody whose life he has ruined."
-- Cindy Sheehan, mother of Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, Killed in Iraq on 4/4/04

As reported yesterday, Cindy Sheehan, whose son was killed last year in Iraq, continues to camp out outside Bush's ranch in Crawford. She is requesting a meeting with Bush who is apparently too busy enjoying his vacation to meet with an American who made the ultimate sacrifice for his War on Iraq.

Apparently a few folks in the Corporate Media are paying some attention. Go figure. The story even made its way onto Wolf Blitzer's normally completely useless radar.

Here's a video of his interview today with Sheehan (Windows Media Player version --- courtesy of David Edwards), along with Senators George Allen (R-VA) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA) echoing how outrageous (not to mention politically stupid) it is for Bush to refuse to meet with this courageous American hero.

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Ignores Requests for Information, Documents
Fails to Even Acknowledge Them
By Brad Friedman on 8/7/2005 5:05pm PT  

Bush's hatred of the American people, disrespect for its public servants and his disinterest in our National Security continues. From NY Times:

The White House has failed to turn over any of the information requested by the 10 members of the disbanded Sept. 11 commission in their renewed, unofficial investigation into whether the government is doing enough to prevent terrorist attacks on American soil, commission members said.
Thomas H. Kean, the former Republican governor of New Jersey who led the bipartisan Sept. 11 commission, said he was surprised and disappointed that the White House, the Pentagon, the State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and several other executive branch agencies had failed to respond to requests made two months ago for updated information on the government's antiterrorism programs.
"It's very disappointing," Mr. Kean said of the administration's failure to cooperate with the group. "All we're trying to do is make the public safer."
The letters requested interviews and updated information on the agencies' efforts to deal with terrorism, asking that all of the information be provided by Aug. 15. But Mr. Kean said Mr. Card and the others had failed to respond to the letters or even to acknowledge their receipt.
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We're Being The Media --- because somebody's got to!
Blog Along With Us if you please
By Winter Patriot on 8/6/2005 3:31pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

This week's Brad Show is almost ready to hit the airwaves.
Once again we have a fine lineup and the prospect of a really fine show.

Listen LIVE via the Web! Saturday from 7p-11p ET (4p-8p PT)!
Repeating Sunday 12noon-4p ET (9a-1p PT)

It's free speech at its best, but it's not free!
Brad pays for the studio rental --- out of his own pocket --- at $500 per week!
So please donate here to help defray costs!
Every little bit helps, friends.

Tonight Brad's scheduled guests include:

  • Rep. CYNTHIA MCKINNEY (D-GA) on Diebold in Georgia and the need for Election Reform (and on her 9/11 Forum last week!)
  • SAM WALKER of the National Voting Rights Museum in Selma,
    with an eyewitness account of Bloody Sunday.
  • KEENAN KELLER Special Counsel to Conyers' & the House Judiciary Comm. on the Voting Rights Act & SCOTUS Nominee John Roberts' opposition to it.
  • An Exclusive Account of what led to the Voting Rights Act in 1965 from civil rights icon Rep. JOHN LEWIS (D-GA) who was beaten on Bloody Sunday and then marched next to Dr. Martin Luther King from Selma to Montgomery.
  • PLUS! If the Radio & Democracy Gods are with us...

  • Rev. JESSE JACKSON calling in LIVE from the Rainbow/PUSH Rally in Atlanta! and...
  • Rep. RUSH HOLT (D-NJ) on his Election Reform Bill!
  • Also...

  • A LIVE report from BRAD BLOG reader, KIRA attending Saturday's Rainbow/PUSH March & Rally in Atlanta! "March like your rights depended on it!"
  • Join us Saturday Night 7p-11p ET (4p-8p PT)! Listen up via, call in with your questions and comments for our guests at 323-650-1286, and blog along with us right here at The BRAD BLOG in our LIVE Open Thread during the show!

    URGENT REMINDER: The BRAD SHOW is still supported primarily by listener donations ... and we still need more listeners and more contributors! So please pick up the phone, or send some e-mail, and tell a few friends about The BRAD SHOW. You (and they) will be glad you did.

    LIVE OPEN THREAD BLOGGING below: click on the "comments" link at the bottom-right corner of this item to join in!

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    'Gold Star Mom' Prepeared to 'Camp Out' Until Given Meeting...
    By Brad Friedman on 8/6/2005 11:58am PT  

    Leon Smith, the editor of The Lone-Star Iconoclast in Bush's "home town" of Crawford, TX has contacted us to let us know that have a reporter on the ground covering Cindy Sheehan, the outspoken mother of Army Specialist Casey Sheehan who was killed in Iraq, who has travelled with a group to Crawford to seek a meeting with George W. Bush.

    Sheehan testified at the recent "Downing Street Memo" hearings held by Congressional Democrats in the basement of the U.S. Capitol (after they were refused a hearing room by Republicans) on the loss of her son, and the difficulty she's had getting information from the Administration and the Defense Department on Casey's death.

    According to the Iconoclast:

    Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq last year, is seeking a meeting with President Bush, who is vacationing in Crawford, to have some of her questions answered about the war. Several busloads of interested individuals are expected in Crawford to support her cause. Sheehan has said that she is willing to camp out in Crawford until she gets to meet with the President.

    Their reporter Nathan Diebenow is now on the scene in Crawford and will be dispatching updated reports as events unfold throughout the day. You can follow the action as it happens on this web page.

    Sheehan, a member of Gold Star Families for Peace, appeared on The BRAD SHOW the Saturday after she testified at the Democratic Congressional hearings. You can listen to her interview in The BRAD SHOW Archives' 6/18/05 section, HOUR 3.

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    Even Rightwingers are Beginning to Ask Real Questions...
    By Brad Friedman on 8/5/2005 1:27pm PT  

    Apparently there are some brave Republicans out there who are willing to display some intellectual honesty in regards to Election Fraud. It's only the root of democracy at stake after all.

    The following is from the Rightwing "Red State" blog and surprisingly asks some real questions and expresses an honest concern about what the hell may have happened in Clermont County during last Tuesday's OH-2 U.S. House Special Election race between Democrat Paul Hackett and Republican Jean Schmidt [emphasis in the original]...

    While you may think Democrats cry wolf on election fraud at the drop of the hat, and I agree, suspicion of the results from Clermont County in Ohio is reasonable based on what's happened there in the last year. What am I talking about? Within the last year, in this one county, there has been; an FBI investigation, a "second draft" of voting results, and yesterday's "machine breakdown".

    I am one of those "kossacks" who thinks that the election irregularities in Clermont county are not a fluke. Before you write me off as a lunatic, please just look at the following situation;

    1. The FBI investigated allegations of fraud made by some involved in the vote counting process in this county in 2004.
    [Link to Cincinatti Enquirer article]

    2. There were also irregularities in this county in the GOP primary this year, favoring Schmidt. From the Enquirer:

    "When all seven counties had reported their votes to the Hamilton County Board of Elections Tuesday night, Schmidt led McEwen by 705 votes. But when Hamilton County Elections Director John Williams came to work Wednesday morning, he found a second corrected version of Clermont County's final results on his fax machine.

    The new totals increased Schmidt's lead to 2,667 votes. Williams said Clermont County officials explained to him that one of their workers accidentally marked an earlier report with the word "final'' and sent it to the Hamilton County board, where all the county reports were being collected."
    [Link to Cincinatti Enquirer article]

    3. The "ballot sticking" explanation may indeed be a true one; however, it does sound fishy, you have to admit. You have to ask, why was this the only county with this problem, and why did the problem only materialize halfway through the vote counting process?

    4. Why did the live-updating vote counting website go down immediately before the new results were posted?

    You may not think that anything fraudulent happened, but I think it's understandable that there's suspicion. Sorry for the long post, I just wanted to make clear that just because we yell "fraud" doesn't mean it's not there. I think we all agree that fraud does occur, in some places; for some reason, this one county has had three serious irregularities in the last year. I think it's obvious there's a possibility that a county in which there are 3 irregularities in the space of a year is doing something wrong.

    One item not mentioned by the blogger "bed4j" in the above, is the report filed by Larisa Alexandrovna last January about affidavits from several Election workers concerning unexplaned stickers placed on ballots during the gamed and illegally conducted Ohio recount.

    We're glad to see however, that more and more people are beginning to ask questions.

    ReddIt this story!

    By Brad Friedman on 8/5/2005 12:06pm PT  

    In a RAW STORY Exclusive by Michael Smith of the London Sunday Times (the man who broke the original Downing Street Memo), it is now revealed via official documents that the previous excuses given by the Bush and Blair administrations for the "spikes" in air attacks against Iraq prior to the war was yet another lie...

    Britain and America's reasons for stepping up bombing of Iraq in the ten months leading up to the war in Iraq was a sham, official figures released by the British Ministry of Defense show.

    U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, and Geoff Hoon, his UK counterpart, said the stepped-up attacks by U.S. and Royal Air Force aircraft patrolling the southern no-fly zone were a response to increased attacks by Iraqi air defences.
    But figures released last month by the British Ministry of Defense show that in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, with American officials predicting moves to oust Saddam Hussein, Iraq dramatically scaled back its attacks on allied aircraft.

    During the first seven months of 2001 the allies recorded 370 “provocations” by the Iraqi military against allied aircraft. But in the seven months between October 2001 and May 2002 when the allies stepped up their attacks, there were just 32. The complete figures are available here, on the parliament's website.
    With U.S. officials openly predicting that an attack on Afghanistan would be followed by an invasion of Iraq, the number of recorded threats kept dropping.

    By February 2002, there were just two, in March none and in April again two. Such was the reduction in the number of Iraqi threats that in the six months leading up to the “spikes of activity” British aircraft did not at any point need to respond in self-defence.
    “Taken together with the leaked minutes of the July 23rd meeting, these figures simply destroy the Government's case,” [Sir Menzies Campbell, the Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs spokesman] said. “None of the inquiries have ever properly focused on the conduct of ministers. It is high time that we had an inquiry which did.”

    The stepped-up attacks on Iraq's air defences are now widely seen by military analysts as the start of the air war, exposing both Blair and President George W Bush to allegations that they acted illegally.
    Congress, which under the US constitution has to give its backing before the President can order military action, did not do so until October 2002. The war officially began Mar. 21, 2003.

    ...And the "spikes" in the U.S. led bombing campaign began "just weeks after Blair and Bush agreed to use military action to bring about regime change in Iraq" at their summit meeting in Crawford during April of 2002.

    ReddIt this story!

    It Was the Blogosphere, Not the Democratic Party Who Made the Hackett Race
    Bob Brigham has a few things to say about that.
    By Brad Friedman on 8/4/2005 8:45pm PT  

    The blogosphere came to the rescue in an incredibly short time to raise a huge amount of money (some $500k of the campaign's $750k total) and on-the-ground support in droves for Democratic candidate Paul Hackett in the OH-2 special U.S. House election last Tuesday in Ohio. Those efforts either gave Hackett enough votes to win the race, or come damned close. The jury is still out on that, but either way, it showed that fighting to win works. Even in a supposedly 70-30 GOP district!

    One of the key players in making all of that happen was Bob Brigham of the Swing State Project blog. He deserves a great amount of thanks and appreciation for his heroic efforts in front of, and behind, the scenes over the past week or more.

    And now Bob has a few thoughts today for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) --- and all the rest of the Democratic leadership --- that are damned well very worth reading.

    ReddIt this story!

    John Roberts Fought Against Expansion of Act in the 80's
    Huge March/Rally for VRA's 40th Anniversary this Saturday in Atlanta
    By Brad Friedman on 8/4/2005 8:31pm PT  

    We weren't going to bother with the John Roberts nomination at all. After all, if the Dems had given a damn about it, they should have thought of that last November and December and January when their leadership didn't feel that the Presidential Election --- which they had most likely won --- was worth fighting for. They knew that anywhere from two to four seats on the Supreme Court would be opening up this Presidential term, but they and Senator No Surrender were apparently too chickenshit to fight for what was likely rightfully theirs.

    So this Supreme Court nomination battle now was just a little too little, a little to late as far as we were concerned.

    But now, it's being reported today that Roberts was a foe of the Voting Rights Act. Whoops, he's just ticked us off too, in that case!

    According to today's New York Times, Roberts was ardently against Congressional plans "to extend - and strengthen" the Voting Rights Act of 1965 back in the 80's when he worked for the Reagan Administration. That extension eventually passed in the House by a 389 to 24 margin in 1981.

    This debate, and Mr. Roberts's role in it, are drawing heightened scrutiny - and criticism - as he heads toward confirmation hearings next month for the Supreme Court.

    Representative John Lewis, the Georgia Democrat and civil rights leader who was severely beaten during the voting rights campaign of 1965, said he was troubled by Mr. Roberts's writings from the 1980's, as they have come to light in recent days. "I think the senators on both sides should really grill him on not just his commitment to the Voting Rights Act, but his understanding of what the fight was all about - the spirit of the act, not just the letter," Mr. Lewis said.

    We'd suggest folks listen to Lewis. He was there on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in 1965 and still has the dents in his skull to show for it. (And actually you can listen to both Lewis himself and Congressional Aide Burton Wides, who helped write much of the VRA legislation from 1970 on up through today --- on this Saturday's Special Edition of The BRAD SHOW to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the VRA on August 6th.)

    The Times piece goes on to note:

    Richard L. Hasen, an election law specialist at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, noted that views could change over time, but added..."I certainly think that had the Roberts view prevailed, we would have many fewer minority elected representatives in Congress and in state and local government."

    In response, DNC Chair Howard Dean issued the following statement today:

    "On the eve of the 40th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act, it is deeply troubling that someone with these opinions would be nominated to the Supreme Court to be entrusted with protecting the individual rights and freedoms of every American. This is particularly significant because, as the DNC's report on the 2004 election in Ohio clearly illustrated, there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure the right to vote - and to have that vote counted - is guaranteed for every eligible American. Now is not the time for a court to be rolling back the right to vote."

    So will the Dems really show up to fight this time? For some reason, we're not holding our breath.

    As mentioned, this Saturday is the 40th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. Rainbow/PUSH is holding a huge march and rally in Atlanta. If you're anywhere near, please get there. We hope to have a live report from the rally on this Saturday's show from BRAD BLOG perennial, Kira! But we'd also love to hear from anybody else who attends!

    ReddIt this story!

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