How's this for imagery that cuts both ways? Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker will come before Congress to discuss the troop "surge" on the sixth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, The Hill's Klaus Marre reports. According to the White House, "the fact that the pair likely will appear before Congress on Sept. 11 has nothing to do with the anniversary of the attack, but was rather dictated by Congress's tight schedule."
Freshman Democrats -- the Republicans' top House targets next year -- are having an easy time raising cash, USA Today's Richard Wolf reports. "The most vulnerable House Democrats -- freshmen who won in districts that went for President Bush in 2004 -- raised an average of $600,000 in the first six months of this year," Wolf writes. "That's nearly double what Republican freshmen raised."
Flying is frustrating these days -- just ask Rep. Robert Filner, D-Calif. Filner, the chairman of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, "has been charged with assault and battery after an altercation with an airline employee over his baggage Sunday evening at Dulles Airport," ABC's Dean Norland reports. According to the official complaint, Filner "allegedly attempted to enter an area authorized for airline employees only, pushed aside the employee's outstretched arm and refused to leave the area when asked by an airline employee." That kind of behavior only works on the House floor.
Former mayor Rudolph Giuliani, R-N.Y., is casting himself as "Mr. Fix-It" in a new Reason Foundation magazine piece, per the New York Post's Carl Campanile. "No matter where I go, Americans are asking, 'What's wrong with Washington?'" Giuliani wrote. Campanile writes, "Thee criticism is a not-so-veiled indictment of the Republican administration of President Bush, as well as the Democratic-led Congress, and shows Giuliani trying to portray himself as a reform-minded outsider who can get results."
In the wake of a New York Times report finding that Giuliani spent only 29 hours at Ground Zero in the three months beginning Sept. 17, 2001, Salon.com's Alex Koppelman advances the story by finding out where Hizzoner was really spending his time. "By our count, Giuliani spent about 58 hours at Yankees games or flying to them in the 40 days between Sept. 25 and Nov. 4, roughly twice as long as he spent at ground zero in the 60 days between Sept. 17 and Dec. 16," Koppelman writes. "By his own standard, Giuliani was one of the Yankees more than he was one of the rescue workers." Well, he did pick up some World Series rings. . . .
"Nobody's going to elect me president of the United States." -- Mayor Michael Bloomberg, I-N.Y., offering another reason that he's not going to run (but still enjoying the attention).
"The 'none of the above' is Mike Huckabee." -- Huckabee, pressing his advantage in New Hampshire with a unique interpretation of the polls.