"It takes firm leadership to preside over the bureaucracy. But it also takes a willingness to listen to dissenting opinions. It requires leaders who can analyze, synthesize, ponder and decide. The administration's performance during its first four years would have been even worse without Powell's damage control. At least once a week, it seemed, Powell trooped over to the Oval Office and cleaned all the dog poop off the carpet."
The politics of hurricanes:
In a piece looking at how much Katrina aid remains unspent, the Wall Street Journal's Jackie Calmes reports that the White House and Congress are considering a third emergency appropriations bill of about $20 billion, which would mainly go to cover costs incurred by agencies other than FEMA. "That prospect is sure to further rile congressional Republicans, torn between the House's anti-spending conservatives and lawmakers eager to show generosity to the victims of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, as well as those recently hit by floods in New England and Hurricane Wilma in Florida."
The New York Times looks at Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff's attempts to have the federal government better respond to Wilma than it did to Katrina. LINK
The Los Angeles Times looks at the debate over enterprise zone tax breaks, saying little data exists to support their effectiveness. LINK
Here is an excerpt of an email Sen. Bill Frist sent to his VOLPAC network last night announcing his intention to bring immigration legislation to the floor in February:
"America has always opened her arms to those who long for a better life. But the simple fact is … a country that can't control its own borders can't control its own destiny."
"So here is what I want you to know: Tomorrow, I will announce that I will bring border security legislation to the Senate floor at the beginning of next year, in February. . . and I expect there to be a full and comprehensive debate."
"We need broader legislation. . . legislation that reduces the number of deaths of people trying to cross the border illegally. . . reduces the trafficking in, and exploitation of, human beings that is so rampant today. . . and adds another layer of protection against the terrorist threat which still exists."
The Oregonian has Sen. McCain opposed to off-reservation Indian gambling casinos. LINK
The AP looks at Gov. Pataki's (R-NY) Golden State swing. LINK
Here is a little background for you on Sen. Clinton's upcoming appearance at a Boston fundraiser for New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch. The two Democrats share the services of powerhouse media consultant Mandy Grunwald. And it is quite appropriate that the event is taking place in Beantown, the very city where Sen. Clinton and then-candidate Lynch last met during the Democratic National Convention in 2004. Sen. Clinton and Gov. Lynch have exchanged phone messages since then, but have not met in person.
Gov. Bill Richardson calls for his state treasurer, who is faced with federal extortion charges, to resign from his post. LINK
The New York Post gets an early read on the latest Quinnipiac University poll to be released today, showing Bloomberg ahead 61 percent to 30 percent. LINK
Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) was on the trail with Ferrer yesterday, making questioning/questionable comments about Bloomberg's donations to GOP leaders. LINK