The Note: The First Woman Speaker

Fineman also touched on the Lieberman-Lamont showdown, saying, "If [Lieberman] loses this primary to Ned Lamont, the anti-war candidate, that's going to be the strongest signal yet to Democrats where they are going to go politically -- where they need to go politically -- and that's flat-out opposition to war."

"It's the single most important thing in determining their strategy for the fall."

"Iraq at Risk of Civil War, Top Generals Tell Senators," the Washington Post. LINK

"The day's most riveting moment came when Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) read a list of policy blunders she said had led to the current Iraq crisis, and she accused Rumsfeld of incompetence. 'Given your track record,' she asked, 'why should we believe your assurances now?'"

"After a long pause, Rumsfeld responded: 'My goodness.'"

"Rummyache," the New York Post on Sen. Clinton's call for Rumsfeld to resign. LINK

"Generals Give Grim Report on Iraqi Strife," the Los Angeles Times. LINK

"Generals warn of civil war in Iraq," Washington Times. LINK

In a quote that already has Jim Manley oohing and ahing, James Baker is quoted by Al Kamen as writing in his forthcoming memoir: "And after fighting successfully [against the State Department] to secure the lead role in winning the peace and reconstructing Iraq . . . the Defense Department made a number of costly mistakes, including disbanding the Iraqi army, outlawing the Baath Party, failing to secure weapons depots, and perhaps never committing enough troops to successfully pacify the country." LINK

"Top generals: Iraq nearing civil war, " the Chicago Tribune. LINK

Politics of the minimum wage and estate tax:

"Using aggressive tactics to keep his party in line and even appealing directly to business lobbyists to help him derail the legislation, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada led Democrats to thwart the GOP's push to clear the measure that would have permanently reduced the estate tax, extended numerous expiring tax breaks and increased the minimum wage," CQ reports.

"Bill on Minimum Wage, Estate Tax Rejected," the Washington Post on the GOP falling "three votes short of the 60 needed to cut off debate and bring the package to the Senate floor, where it was considered certain to pass on a simple-majority vote." LINK

"Repubilcans Bet on 'Trifecta,' Lose on Estate Tax Legislation," Bloomberg LINK

"The end of the right?" E.J. Dionne sees the minimum wage and estate tax fight as an acknowledgment on the part of Republicans that "they would not hold congressional power without the help of moderates," and yet, "their way of admitting this was to put on display the central goal of the currently dominant forces of politics: to give away as much as possible to the truly wealthy." LINK

2006: RNC summer meeting:

As part of a coordinated GOP effort to demonize the ranking Democratic House members who stand to gain the chairman's gavel if the President's party loses 15 House seats in November, White House political director Sara Taylor went on the attack against Rep. John Dingell (D-MI) regarding Hezbollah on the opening day of the RNC's summer meeting in Minneapolis, MN.

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