Tuesday night links and open thread (UPDATE: RANGEL *WON’T* STEP DOWN)

NewsThere’s so much going on out there that your humble blogger can’t keep up with it all. Here’s a brief rundown on this evening’s hot stories:

— The USA Today reports that Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has called for embattled NY Gov. David Paterson step down if reports that he intervened in a domestic-violence case are true. NOW has called for Paterson’s resignation as well. Paterson, of course, has denied the allegations.

—– And speaking of Gillibrand, former US House Rep. Harold Ford (TN) – who recently was vying to be her chief opponent in the Senate primary later this year – is no longer interested in trying to challenge her for the seat formerly held by S.O.S. Hillary Clinton. He wrote an opinion piece that appeared in the NYT yesterday explaining his decision, complaining about Democrat “machine politics” in NY – but the bottom line is his candidacy was going no where fast and he got out before he was embarassed later.

—– CNN reports that President Obama is “open” to some GOP ideas on healthcare, but apparently not to much as it is being widely reported tonight that he will announce tomorrow that he is on board with reconciliation to get healthcare “reform” passed:

White House officials tell ABC News that in his remarks tomorrow President Obama will indicate a willingness to work with Republicans on some issue to get a health care reform bill passed but will suggest that if it is necessary, Democrats will use the controversial “reconciliation” rules requiring only 51 Senate votes to pass the “fix” to the Senate bill, as opposed to the 60 votes to stop a filibuster and proceed to a vote on a bill.

It was only a matter of time.

—– Breaking news: MSNBC’s Chuck Todd is reporting via Twitter that Rep. Charlie Rangel is preparing to give up his House Ways and Means Committee gavel, “possibly as early as tonight.” This after Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala), fellow CBC member, called for him to step down today in light of the recent finding by the House Ethics Committee that Rangel broke the House’s gift rules.

It has not been a good year for NY politicos so far.

***Update – 8:19 PM: THe Hill is reporting that, contrary to earlier stories about how Rangel was going to resign his chairmanship of the HWMC, he is not:

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) will not step down from his position, the congressman said Tuesday.

Rangel, who sits atop one of the most powerful committees in the House, rejected calls to step down from his chairmanship pending the result of an ethics inquiry.

Rangel, following a meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on the Capitol, denied very preliminary reports Tuesday evening that he’d be stepping down.

When asked whether he is still chairman, Rangel said: “you bet your life!”

He then said Pelosi told him not to say “a damn thing” about the meeting.

Stay tuned.***

—– The GOP and Dem primaries for the Governor’s seat in TX are just about to close (7 PM their time). I’ll post the results here later. The TX BOE will, of course, have them as well (where do you think I’ll be getting the info from? ;) ) Am very interested to see who wins in the hotly contested GOP match-up between current TX Gov. Rick Perry and US Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Comments are closed.