The Note: Cash and Carry

This is the first time that Sen. Feingold's office has issued a statement endorsing marriage equality. In the past, Sen. Feingold has said that he did not believe that it was his place as a United States Senator to pass judgment on who should be married. This is how he answered a question about gay marriage while appearing on the Feb. 6, 2005 edition of C-SPAN's "Q&A": LINK

LAMB: "Should gays be allowed to marry?"

FEINGOLD: "You know, I don't believe that's something that is up to me to have a strong opinion on. I grew up believing that marriage is between a man and a woman. That's the way I understood it. But I don't think it's my job to sit in judgment on people on that issue."

"I believe this is up to the states. And I generally think a society where people who are monogamous, where people who love each other come together and form stable families is better than the opposite."

"And so, I don't think it's my job as a United States senator to pass judgment on who should be married."

Politics of immigration:

Gov. Jeb Bush (R-FL) calls the tone of the immigration debate in Washington, "hurtful" to him and his Mexican-born wife, reports the Los Angeles Times. LINK

The Los Angeles Times on the "showdown" immigration vote: LINK

"Immigration Measure Stalls in the Senate," reads the New York Times headline over an article detailing the search for compromise. LINK

A letter released yesterday by 50 evangelical leaders endorsing the McCain-Kennedy approach to immigration "marks a deepening split" among the "nation's large, politically influential evangelical organizations" over the issue of immigration, reports the Washington Post. LINK

The Washington Post's Charles Babington writes that the divide between Arizona's two Republican senators on illegal immigration exemplifies the larger divisions among members of the party. LINK

Senators are turning up the heat on President Bush to intervene in the immigration stalemate, per the Wall Street Journal. LINK

Robert Samuelson offers his ideas for a compromise on immigration: LINK

Sen. Frist has said he wants a vote on an immigration bill by the end of the week, but there hasn't been much progress on a compromise, reports Roll Call's John Stanton.

Chris Lewis of the Nashville City Paper on the same thing. LINK

Politics of Iraq:

In a must-read sure to be overlooked while the spotlight focuses on DeLay, the Washington Post's Peter Baker writes of the cuts in funding by the Bush Administration of groups trying to promote democracy in Iraq. LINK

Ted Kennedy gets his jab in: "The solution to Iraq lies in the political process, and it's reckless for the White House to cut funds to strengthen democracy in Iraq at this time."

"Sixteen Wisconsin communities Tuesday approved referendums calling for the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq," writes Emily Fredrix of the AP. LINK

Bush Administration agenda:

Here's a New York Times lede that can likely unify the Democratic Party in a hurry. LINK

"The first data to document the effect of President Bush's tax cuts for investment income show that they have significantly lowered the tax burden on the richest Americans, reducing taxes on incomes of more than $10 million by an average of about $500,000."

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