The DCCC got a hold of a fundraising invitation for Rep. Gerlach's (R-PA) reelection campaign and kindly passed it along to reporters. According to the invitation, Karl Rove is expected to participate in a VIP roundtable discussion (at $2,500 a head) at Valis Associates in Washington, DC next Tuesday evening.
The New York Times editorial page asks Karl Rove to hold a press conference to clear everything up. LINK
Independent (and politically liberal) investigative journalist Murray Waas posts an account of Bob Novak's alleged testimony to the special prosecutor. LINK
Ian Bishop of the New York Post writes up Rove attorney Robert Luskin's comments to National Review that he believes Cooper "burned" Rove on the Plame story. LINK
Harold Meyerson uses his Washington Post column to demonstrate how the Left feels about Mr. Rove. LINK
Has the White House's public outreach, combined with the somewhat shy responses from Democrats (excluding Robert Byrd, who thanked the President for, uh, consulting, with him), muted the consultation issue politically?
The consultation stuff matters politically, in that it establishes warmer personal and institutional feelings between the Democratic Senators and the President, which might not change their votes, but does make it a little more difficult for them to be so quick to attack.
Unlike in previous major decisions faced by this Administration, giving Congress their institutional prerogatives seems to be what the White House intends here, and it's helping to sooth some of the egos at the other end of the avenue.
Note Ken Mehlman telling Wolf Blitzer yesterday that it is the biggest such consultation ever.
Mike Allen and Dan Balz report that "Attendees said Bush noted that, in his campaign, he had laid out markers on nominating strict constructionists who are not activists and that he is in intent on hewing to those principles. In a light moment, Democrats said there are plenty of activist conservatives, as well as liberals." LINK
The New York Times' Hulse and Stevenson lede their wrap of the President's meeting with congressional leaders with Sen. Specter's call for a search beyond the Circuit Court system. LINK
Maura Reynolds of the Los Angeles Times leads her consultation story with a charming anecdote about Harriet Miers calling Sen. Kohl (and mentions Clinton and Obama talks), but this is the part we like best, regarding the "surprise" that it was O'Connor and not Rehnquist who stepped down: LINK
"'There is definitely more emphasis on women now,' said Jay Sekulow, chief counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice, one of several conservative activists who have met with White House officials to discuss the Supreme Court nomination. 'This is not just being politically correct. This is a historic seat. I'd like to see a woman appointed in her place.'"
The New York Post's Deborah Orin explores First Lady Laura Bush's appeal for a female nominee. LINK
Scott Brooks of the Manchester Union Leader delves into Sen. Harry Reid's suggestion that a High Court robe may suit Sen. Judd Gregg handsomely. New Hampshire's Democratic Party chair Kathy Sullivan fanaticizes of the political ramifications. LINK
Big Casino budget politics: