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3:55 PM


Tricks and Treats

If all politics are local, the Democrats don't know about it. In an effort to gain the majority in Congress, Democrats have struggled to tie local elections to national issues, such the Iraq war, health care, and, when applicable, the Foley scandal. Republican candidates have tried to highlight their achievements in bringing pork spending back home.

No election has seen this tension like the race for Tom Reynolds's seat in the 26th District. The incumbent Republican's numbers plummeted a month ago when he was implicated in the Foley scandal, and they shot up when the White House tapped him as point man on millions of dollars in federal blizzard relief. The money arrived two weeks after the blizzard itself and just as Reynolds was testifying in the Foley investigation in front of the House Ethics Committee.

Reynolds's relief was all part of Karl Rove's plan to keep control of Congress, or at least abate a Democratic tidal wave, according to a story in Sunday's Los Angeles Times that described Rove's plan to politicize federal spending. Seems the one thing small-government-at-all-costs Republicans believe government is good for is the electing of small-government-at-all-costs Republicans. Gotta admire the consistency.

In other tilting-the-playing-field news, the hearings are over, but findings from the Foley investigation won't be released until December. The Saddam verdict will be handed down … this weekend. Or maybe not till after the election, depending on which court official you hear from.

Expect Osama bin Laden to call the White House any day now with directions to his cave.

GOP At A Loss? Karl Rove Has an 11th-Hour Plan to Win [LAT]
Ethics Report on Foley Not Expected Before Elections [WP]
Saddam Verdict Is Expected on Nov. 5 [AP]
Saddam Verdict May Be Delayed — Prosecutor [Reuters]