Breaking: Senate rejects attempt to pass minimum wage hike …

… without the inclusion of additional tax cuts. Good for them! It’s a only partial victory against the minimum wage, but we should take them where we can get them these days.

The battle over this bill should be interesting, as Republicans who really don’t want to raise the min. wage do battle with Dems who are against tax cuts.

Haven’t found a link to the story yet, but got the news alert from MSNBC just a few seconds ago.

Update: Story here:

WASHINGTON – Democrats’ promise of a quick increase in the minimum wage ran aground Wednesday in the Senate, where lawmakers are insisting it include new tax breaks for restaurants and other businesses that rely on low-pay workers.

On a 54-43 vote, liberals lost an effort to advance a House-passed bill that would lift the pay floor from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour without any accompanying tax cut. Opponents of the tax cut needed 60 votes to prevail.

The vote sent a message to House Democrats and liberals in the Senate that only a hybrid tax and minimum wage package could succeed in the Senate. But any tax breaks in the bill would put the Senate on a collision course with the House, which is required by the Constitution to initiate tax measures.

Not so good news:

In a separate vote, the Senate also effectively killed a modified line-item veto bill. The Republican-inspired measure would have permitted a president to pluck individual items out of spending bills and submit them to Congress for a vote.

In other words, Senate Democrats are still in favor of porky earmarks, contrary to their pre-election promises. Surprise surprise.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell had this to say in response to the defeat of the Gregg amendment:

“Democrats campaigned for the last two years on reform, yet blocked a commonsense measure designed to do just that. Twenty Democrats currently in the Senate supported a similar measure when it was proposed in 1995, yet today they refused to allow even a simple yes-or-no vote. Americans demanded reform and we owe it to them. If we are going to continue to pass real reforms, we must put politics aside and get to work.”

Another round of “caption this” (WEDS OPEN THREAD)

Heh. These ought to be good ;)

Caption: Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) (R) listens in front of Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) as U.S. President George W. Bush delivers his annual State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington January 23, 2007. (Larry Downing/Reuters)

Related: Check out these political cartoons on the Hillary/Obama ‘competition’ here.

Former Dem presidential contender Wesley Clark: We should ‘talk’ with Ahmadinejad

I watched this last night on Hannity and Colmes and wanted to blog about it, so I’m glad to see that Ian at Hot Air has posted a video of this clueless wonder’s comments on how we should ‘talk’ with Ahmadinejad, the Islamofascist Holocaust denier who believes Israel should be wiped off the map, and who believes the US and Israel will “soon be destroyed”. Make sure to watch the whole thing, as Clark apparently believes that we could actually engage in a meaningful dialogue with this modern day version of Hitler.

Clark has also recently asserted that our foreign policy towards Iran is being dictated by wealthy NY Jews. Jon Chait, famous for writing a piece about why he hates the President, tackles Clark’s assertion here.

In related news on Iran, the MSM/Dem push to declare the threat from Iran and other Middle East enemies are as “overhyped” and/or “flawed” in description has started, first with this piece from yesterday’s LA Times that quotes “critics” as saying there is “scant” evidence of an Iraq-Iran arms link (which the liberal blogosphere, of course, seized upon like a hungry dog would chew on a picked-over chicken bone) and this piece in today’s Washington Post, which Warner Todd Huston at Newsbusters dissects here.

Democrats, in working hand in hand with their cohorts in the press, seem almost eager to severely limit the President’s options in dealing with a threat Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) says is being portrayed by the admin in the same way the Dems believe he portrayed the threat from Iraq – a clear implication that he believes the administration is lying.

I wonder just how long it’ll be before we find out that Senator Rockefeller visited allies of Ahmadinejad in the Middle East to inform them of what he believes the admin’s plans are for Iran, like he did back in January 2002 when he visited Iraq’s ally Syria and alerted a high ranking government official there that thought we were planning on attacking Iraq?

Nifong’s woes continue: North Carolina state bar amends complant to add ethics charges


Raleigh — New ethics charges have been filed by the State Bar accusing Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong of withholding DNA evidence and misleading the court in the Duke lacrosse case.

The amended complaint cites findings from April 2006 that DNA tests found on the alleged accuser excluded all of the Duke lacrosse players as potential contributors.

The complaint also states Nifong was told of the test results by Brian Meehan, the director of the DNA company where the tests were performed.

According to the complaint, during one of the meetings in April, Nifong and Meehan agreed that the findings would only include “tests for which DNA found on specific evidence match or was consistent with DNA from known reference specimens.”

The amended complaint also states that the “potentially exculpatory DNA evidence and test results” would not be provided to defense attorneys.

The State Bar also cited dozens of pretrial comments Nifong made to the media early on in the case. On March 13, 2006, a woman, who was working as an exotic dancer, claims she was assaulted by three men during an off-campus party in March involving members of the Duke lacrosse team.

This is major. I see Nifong being disbarred, because I think the evidence is pretty clear cut. Will be interesting to see what happens.

Fanning racial tensions in this state, falsely accusing people who apparently aren’t guilty of anything other than hiring two strippers to come to their frat party of rape, destroying their lives, all in order to get reelected. The credibility of a lot of self-righteous ‘crusaders’ in this case has been shot, and it’s not just Nifong’s, but so many others, too, as Gail Heriot at The Right Coast blog explains.


The Forbes Web Celeb 25 list has posted an article along with a list of who they believe are the top 25 “biggest, brightest and most influential people on the Internet.” Check out the slide show here – the article is here.

I have to say I’m surprised not to see Michelle Malkin on that list, but nevertheless it’s fascinating to see the rise of the influence and popularity of the web in pictures. Make sure to check it out.

Update: ST readers “Fang” and “anon1” email to point out what the article says about why Malkin, and others like Arianna Huffington weren’t included, and it was because they were famous before they started their ventures on the I’net, which I missed in my haste to get the links posted. Fair enough.

Hat tip: ST reader Fat Tone (who is, BTW, now blogging over at Roger Fraley’s blog)