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Flotsam and Jetsam

It’s not quite the “final” lawsuit, but Norm Coleman’s loss at the Minnesota Supreme Court and Al Franken’s election certification make clear where this is headed.

Still, where does Harry Reid get off saying that Coleman will “never ever serve” in the Senate again? I know Senate Democrats aren’t keen on elections but Coleman can run again, even if he’s finally declared the loser in this one.

Jim Geraghty reminds us that Democrats Republicans aren’t so enamored of secret ballots. And he (along with others) doesn’t give the Ken Blackwell camp’s hit piece on Michael Steele a  good review.

The six RNC contenders who debated yesterday did not overwhelm the assembled with their bold visions and innovative ideas, according to this report. (Although this account singles out Blackwell and Michael Steele for better outings.) You wonder if this is the best the GOP can really do.

But they can all wait around for that Obama backlash to solve their problems. That’s the ticket.

Mickey Kaus warns that card check isn’t dead. The Senate just wants to mull it over — for a really long time, if vulnerable Senators have any say.

Jeffrey Goldberg says kaddish for J Street.

JTA isn’t buying the J Street defense: “This is a recurring line from J Street officials and the organization’s biggests fans, who complain that established pro-Israel organizations, Jewish communal leaders and pundits seek to delegitimize them simply for asking legitimate questions about Israeli policies. The only problem is that in this case it is J Street that has been consistently questioning the legitimacy of those who happen to think that Israel is right to be taking military action right now.”

The House Republican leaders, invoking President-elect Obama, protest Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s rule changes, which will make it more difficult for the minority to offer alternative legislation. Closed rules and corruption– didn’t the Republicans run against all that in 1994?

Charles Hurt would like more change: “Obama ran for president and won handily on the promise that he is a new kind of politician, carrying a voice directly from the people. And he promised an open and honest government. People gave Obama the benefit of the doubt and decided not to hang the words and deeds of others on him. But at some point, it all becomes much more serious. It becomes the grave issue of judgment and knowing whom you can trust. Obama has allowed himself to be surrounded by some seriously flawed people. If you are known by the company that you keep, then Obama needs to find him some new friends.”

Mother Jones thinks the Bill Richardson non-vetting suggests a deeper problem: “It may be premature to say that Obama and his team have too high a tolerance for corruption. But this first self-destruct among his cabinet picks could well prove all the more damaging because it’s something they should have seen coming from miles away.”

Caroline Kennedy tanks in a post-interview poll, you know.

Is the Leon Panetta selection a “cop out,” a smart pick, or the baffling selection of  “a lifelong partisan” with “no relevant experience”? So far the only people who count — Senators — aren’t impressed. The notion that you can be a “good manager” without expertise and go toe-to-toe with those you seek to manage seems like wishful thinking, especially in the CIA (with a tradition of ignoring Directors whom the underlings don’t respect).

It’s a Clinton-palooza at the Justice Department!


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