Here's the latest political buzz:
Senator McCain (R-AZ) is interviewed on Larry King Live, his first major interview since his election defeat:
McCain on challenges facing President Obama: "epic."
On working with the President: "These are difficult times and whatever way I can assist and work with the president of the United States, I want to do it. "And again, the American people are tired of the bitter partisanship."
On Guantanamo Bay: "The easy part, in all due respect, is to say we're going to close Guantanamo. Then I think I would have said where they were going to be taken. Because you're going to run into a NIMBY [not in my backyard] problem here in the United States of America."
On fiscal stimulus: "[It] is more of a spending package than a stimulus package."
"I hope we can work together to, frankly, be a real stimulus package and not just a spending package that has every cat and dog and pet project that people have."
On curbing deficit: "I think we should spend the money that we can immediately, but at the same time if we have a couple of quarters of positive GDP growth, then let's start reducing and eliminating the huge, massive, unprecedented deficits that are going to accrue from these actions."
On why he lost election: "I didn't pick Mitt Romney."
Yeah, made that up.
Sen. McCain also proposed new cuts or the complete elimination of payroll taxes, a puzzling proposal as it would deepen the federal deficit which he expressed the desire to reduce above if the cut in payroll taxes are not met with requisite reductions in entitlements.
Concerning the stimulus package, Senator McCain echoed the concerns of this party colleague in the lower chamber Rep. Cantor (R-VA) (see "Cantor Right On Stimulus") about wasteful spending. As a legislator who has railed against pork barrel spending, Sen. McCain will be an asset in reducing waste when crafting the final language of the bill for the President's signature. But as nearly 40% of the stimulus package is comprised of tax cuts, I think the esteemed senior Senator from Arizona will be more than willing to give it a wholehearted "yea."
Concerning President Obama's E.O. to shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention facility, the Senator is correct to point out the problem of NIMBYism when attempting to relocate prisoners. However if the President had first attempted to determine exactly where to move the prisoners, he would never have found a willing host other than the Moon, one of the reasons the previous administration used in justifying the continued operation of the facility. Obviously one would rather not have these alleged terrorists on their soil, so waiting for hosts would mean the facility would continue to operate indefinitely. This is an outcome which both Democratic and Republican lawmakers, as well as the President, refuse to accept. By issuing the E.O. to close the Bay, the President is attempting to bring due haste to the process of trying and if necessary prosecuting these captured combatants.
Concerning Romney, he still would have lost.
Caroline Kennedy withdraws, then doesn't, then does again. Aye aye aye. Though I've much to say, I'm not even touching this one, out of deep respect for my Kennedy-enamored colleague Mr. Beck.
Governor Paterson is set to name Secretary of State Clinton's successor in the Senate tomorrow. New Yorkers hold their breath. YOU READ IT HERE: Andrew Cuomo will not be the next Senator from New York.
Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska hires Washington power broker Robert Barnett, who has delivered book deals for such names as President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, President Barack Obama, and Obama For America campaign manager (read: genius) David Plouffe, according to Hollywood Reporter. Speculation of Palin campaign tell-all rampant. No confirmation on rumors book may instead focus on family moose recipes.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney insists former President Bush should have pardoned Cheney's former chief of staff I. "Scooter" Libby, a matter that was formerly relevant.
President Obama will maintain use of his custom made, encryption-enabled, high security "BarackBerry" with select senior staff. Send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org