[Nfbmo] Fw: Today's Political News From The Editors of Bulletin News

James Moynihan jamesmmoynihan at gmail.com
Thu May 3 15:10:57 UTC 2012

Fellow Federationists

TThis contains information about Chen, the blind Chinese dissident which we 
were discussing.


Jim Moynihan
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Neuman, Dale A." <NeumanD at umkc.edu>
To: <jamesmmoynihan at gmail.com>; "Curtis, Gayla" <curtisgd at umkc.edu>; 
<pennepwi at yahoo.com>; "Sandreczki, Thomas C." <SandreczkiT at umkc.edu>
Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2012 7:49 AM
Subject: FW: Today's Political News From The Editors of Bulletin News


Dale A. Neuman
Director, Harry S Truman Center for Governmental Affairs
Special Projects Associate, College of Arts and Sciences
Professor Emeritus of Political Science
816-235-6108 or 816-235-2787
FAX 816-235-5191
Neumand at umkc.edu
From: Political Bulletin [PoliticalBulletin at bulletinnews.com]
Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2012 6:30 AM
To: Neuman, Dale A.
Subject: Today's Political News From The Editors of Bulletin News

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Washington News
Campaign News
Political Humor



DATE: Thursday, May 3, 2012 - 8:00 AM

Washington News

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Chen's Status Unclear As Deal Appears To Unravel   A deal for Chinese 
activist Chen Guangchang to leave the US embassy in Beijing was in jeopardy 
Wednesday amid what the New York 
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calls "dramatically conflicting developments" in the saga. Bloomberg 
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says Chen, who left the US embassy and headed to a local hospital 
accompanied by US Ambassador Gary Locke, "said he feared for his family and 
wanted to leave China, upending" the deal, and 
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adds that Chen "accused US embassy officials of pushing him hard to leave 
the safety of the embassy." He told CNN by phone, "The embassy kept lobbying 
me to leave and promised to have people stay with me in the hospital, but 
this afternoon, as soon as I checked into the hospital room, I noticed they 
were all gone." But the 
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says Locke said today that "he could say 'unequivocally' that Guangcheng 
Chen was never pressured to leave."

        The CBS Evening News, which opened with the story, said "what looked 
like a deft triumph of American diplomacy has turned into an international 
incident with no end in sight. ... The Chinese had guaranteed Chen's safety 
and freedom, but now that he is back in Chinese hands, there are reasons for 
doubt." CBS (Martin) added that earlier, Chen "couldn't thank American 
diplomats enough. He even phoned Secretary [of State] Clinton to personally 
thank her. ... Then, as Chen was taken to a Chinese hospital to be reunited 
with his family the wheels started to come off a deal which was supposed to 
have allowed him to remain in China free of persecution."

        On ABC World News, Martha Raddatz said Chen, "who has become a folk 
hero in China...thought his safety would be assured by the US. Not anymore. 
The first pictures out of Beijing today were tender scenes. Chen Guangcheng 
on his way to a hospital, clutching the US diplomats who took him in after 
his dramatic escape from house arrest. Hours later, after the diplomats were 
gone, chaos. Chinese guards shoving reporters away from Chen who told 
reporters earlier he had felt abandoned by the US and feared for his safety. 
'If I didn't leave the embassy, the Chinese authorities would endanger my 
family,' he said."

        On NBC Nightly News, Ian Williams said the deal "now appears to be 
unraveling." Chen left the US embassy "once he knew US officials said 
Chinese authorities assured Chen he wouldn't be mistreated and his 
allegations of abuse would be investigated and that he would get a new home 
and a university job. But hours later, with US officials gone, Chen 
apparently had a dramatic change of heart." In an interview with NBC, he 
said "he had only left the embassy because of threats to his family. 'I 
demand the US government take concrete action to guarantee my safety and 
human rights and not consider other interests,' he said. 'I want to leave 
China, any country is fine.'"

        The Los Angeles 
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says, "For several hours, it appeared the US and China had struck a deal" 
that would let Chen "walk free -- and avoid a diplomatic disaster. ... But 
shortly after Chen was released from the embassy on Wednesday, he appeared 
to question whether officials had dealt with him in good faith." The 
"cascade of events left US-Chinese relations in a questionable state and 
threatened to deliver an embarrassing blow to the Obama administration."

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says the "entire episode occurred shortly after" Secretary of State Clinton 
and Treasury Secretary Geithner arrived for the annual Strategic and 
Economic Dialogue "counterparts and threatened to overshadow the talks 
between the two nations, which already have a delicate relationship. It 
added a layer of complexity to a diplomatic mission for Clinton that already 
includes discussions of arms sales, maritime security and delicate trade and 
intellectual property rights issues."

        The New York 
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adds that the events left Clinton "to begin her strategic dialogue with her 
Chinese counterparts on Thursday under a cloud of confusion," and "exposed 
the Obama administration to criticism from Republicans and human rights 
groups that it had rushed to resolve a delicate human rights case so that it 
would not overshadow other matters on the bilateral agenda."

        The Washington 
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says the "remarkable drama, begun more than a week earlier when Chen escaped 
from house arrest in his provincial village and made his way toward the US 
Embassy, culminated not in the diplomatic coup of an American-brokered deal 
but in confusion."

        Editorial Pages Say US Needs To Protect Chen USA 
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editorializes, "What happens next is anybody's guess. Once Chen left the 
embassy, the US lost much of its leverage. But whatever the risk of 
diplomatic fallout from China, the Obama administration can't simply abandon 
Chen now. He and his supporters saw the US Embassy as the greatest beacon of 
hope in their authoritarian country."

        The Washington 
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, in an editorial written before the deal's seeming collapse, writes, 
"Having strongly encouraged Mr. Chen to accept the Chinese offer, the 
administration must ensure that he is treated fairly -- or appear naive and 
feckless. Already Mr. Chen's supporters and human rights groups are 
suggesting that the Americans pressured him into a bad deal because of their 
desire not to disrupt a US-China strategic dialogue."

        The Wall Street 
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says in an editorial that the deal would have improved Chen's living 
conditions, but that the US would need to continue to focus on his 
well-being and that of other dissidents.

Holder, Sebelius Announce Charges In Massive Medicare Crackdown   Attorney 
General Holder and HHS Secretary Sebelius announced yesterday that federal 
prosecutors have charged 107 doctors and others in a massive Medicare fraud 
crackdown, which generated heavy media coverage last night and this morning, 
including more than a minute of coverage on network newscasts.

        ABC World News reported on "the largest nationwide bust in Medicare 
history. Seven cities, from Chicago to Miami, Houston to Baton Rouge showing 
us how gigantic this problem is, 107 doctors, nurses and social workers were 
charged and the FBI said they had scammed taxpayers out of nearly half a 
billion dollars."

        The CBS Evening News reported, "Federal agents have executed a 
massive roundup of suspects for Medicare fraud, breathtaking in its scope. 
There were raids yesterday in seven cities. One hundred and seven people are 
accused tonight in scams to steal $452 million from the program. They 
include doctors, nurses, and owners of mental health centers who allegedly 
billed taxpayers for treatments that patients never received."

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calls it "the latest in a string of major arrests in the past two years as 
authorities have targeted fraud that's believed to cost the government 
between $60 billion and $90 billion each year. On Wednesday, hundreds of 
federal agents fanned out around the country, raiding businesses, seizing 
documents and charging 107 suspects in Miami, Los Angeles, Houston, Detroit, 
Chicago, Tampa, Fla., and Baton Rouge, La. The government suspended payment 
to 52 providers as part of the investigations."

Data Suggest Labor Market Is Cooling   Bloomberg 
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reports that private sector employment increased by 119,000 in April, "the 
smallest gain in seven months," according to data from ADP Employer 
Services. Bloomberg notes that the numbers point "to a cooling in the job 
market." The Labor Department will release the numbers for the full economy 
Friday. That report "is projected to show payrolls increased by about 
160,000 in April after rising 120,000 a month earlier, according to the 
Bloomberg survey median." Additionally, the Commerce Department reported 
that factory orders in March "fell 1.5 percent following a 1.1 percent gain 
in February." The Wall Street 
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also reports that the ADP data suggests that the labor market is cooling. 
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says the ADP numbers are "feeding fears" that the Labor Department report 
"will show disappointing job growth for a second month."

Campaign News

Offering "Tepid Support" For Romney, Gingrich Suspends His Campaign   The 
CBS Evening News reported, "In the presidential race today, Newt Gingrich 
made the long-awaited announcement that he's giving up his fight for the 
Republican nomination. He gave a less-than-ringing endorsement to his 
once-bitter rival Mitt Romney, suggesting only that Romney is better than 
the Democratic alternative, President Obama."

        ABC World News reported that Gingrich "did not endorse Mitt Romney. 
But he said you can laugh at his idea to bring a lunar colony on the moon, 
but he still believes in it. Now that he has more free time he is going to 
take it up again and you have not heard the last of it."

        NBC Nightly News reported that Gingrich "finally suspended his bid 
for the GOP nomination today after leaving behind some memorable moments in 
the campaign that seemed for a while there like it was not going to end."

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reports that Gingrich, who "bowed out of the race more than $4 million in 
debt and his reputation perhaps damaged," called on "conservatives to rally 
behind Romney as a better alternative than Obama. 'This is not a choice 
between Mitt Romney and Ronald Reagan. This is a choice between Mitt Romney 
and the most radical, leftist president in American history,' Gingrich 

        The Washington 
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says Gingrich offered a "tepid endorsement of Mr. Romney," encouraging 
conservatives to back the former Massachusetts Governor over Obama. The 
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similarly says Gingrich "delivered a tepid endorsement of...Romney that 
could best be summed up as the following: the enemy of my enemy is my 

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(5/2, Sink) reported on its website, "The tepid support will likely do 
little to endear Gingrich to the" GOP "after a grueling primary campaign, 
and is particularly puzzling considering the $4 million in debt the Gingrich 
campaign reportedly holds. According to multiple reports, the Romney 
campaign and" the RNC "indicated they would help Gingrich retire the 
outstanding balance, but such an offer seems likely predicated on hard work 
to support the Romney campaign."

Romney Says Democrats "Don't Like Business Very Much"   Fox News' Special 
Report reported Mitt Romney says President Obama's "reelection road map 
could take the country right down the path to an even worse economy," adding 
that Romney's attack "comes amid reports of sharp downturns in business 
hiring and orders for factory goods." Carl Cameron added, "At a woman-owned 
business in Virginia, Romney charged President Obama with 'extraordinarily 
disappointing political tactics' that Romney warned could harm the nation's 
economic vitality," and "accused the President...of using rhetoric so 
antibusiness that it could ultimately discourage and stunt growth."

        The Los Angeles 
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adds that Romney said Obama's "policies have harmed small businesses and 
divided Americans," and pledged he would "ease regulations, increase 
domestic energy production and reduce taxes to right the nation's economy." 
Romney said, "Democrats say they like a strong economy. They just don't like 
business very much and you see the economy is made up of nothing but 
business and so we have to encourage entrepreneurs." The 
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reports in its "Ballot Box" blog that Romney "tried to pivot the election 
conversation back to the economy" with the stop. His campaign "also released 
a Web video Wednesday morning, attacking Obama's economic record."

Obama, Romney Run Tight In FL And OH, But President Leads By 8 In PA   A new 
survey of three key swing states from Quinnipiac University shows the race 
tight in Florida and Ohio, but President Obama leading Mitt Romney by 8 in 
Pennsylvania. In Florida, Romney leads Obama 44%-43%. In a similar poll five 
weeks ago, Obama led 49%-42%. In Ohio, Obama tops Romney 44%-42%, down from 
a 47%-41% lead in the prior survey. However, in Pennsylvania, Obama now 
leads 47%-39%, up from a 45%-42% lead previously. Quinnipiac's Peter Brown 
said, "Romney's ability to cut into the president's leads in Ohio and 
Florida reflects two changes in the political environment: First, since he 
is now the de facto nominee, Romney is no longer being attacked by his 
fellow Republicans, who are closing ranks behind him. Second, voter optimism 
about the economy has leveled off, reflecting economic statistics over the 
past month and the public reaction to them." The poll surveyed 1,169 
registered voters in Florida, 1,130 registered voters in Ohio, and 1,168 
registered voters in Pennsylvania from April 25-May 1.

Poll Shows Walker, Barrett Even In Recall Matchup   A poll released 
Wednesday by Marquette University School of 
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shows Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) 
"locked in a dead-even race for governor," the Milwaukee Journal 
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reports. Among registered voters, "Barrett led Walker 47% to 46%. That 
1-point lead was reversed when considering only likely voters, with Walker 
holding 48% and Barrett holding 47%." The Journal Sentinel adds, "Walker 
performed much better against former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk. He 
beat her 49% to 42% among registered voters, with similar results among 
likely voters. Walker had an advantage of 49% to 40% among likely voters in 
head-to-head matchups with both Sectary of State Doug La Follette and state 
Sen. Kathleen Vinehout." In the Democratic primary, Barrett leads with 38%, 
followed by Falk with 21%, La Follette with 8% and Vinehout with 6%. The 
poll surveyed 705 registered voters from April 26-29.

        Wisconsin Democrats Shift Focus To Walker's Record On Jobs The 
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reports, "When Wisconsin Democrats launched their recall drive against" 
Walker last year, "it was all about unions. They wanted Walker to pay with 
his job for pushing legislation that stripped almost all public workers of 
nearly all their collective bargaining rights." However, "buoyed by fresh 
federal statistics that show Wisconsin's economy is still" struggling, 
Democrats have recently been seeking "to transform the election into a 
referendum on" Walker's "failure to put people back to work." The piece adds 
that Department of Labor numbers show the state lost 23,900 jobs, "including 
17,800 government jobs from March 2011 to March 2012, the largest job loss 
of any state."

Political Humor

The Latest From Late Night Comedians

Jay Leno: "Well, as you know, President Obama made a surprise visit to 
Afghanistan yesterday. It wasn't as big a surprise as last year's Navy SEALs 
trip to Pakistan, but it was big. It was big. He met with the President of 
Afghanistan and he told the Afghan people that future generations of Afghans 
will be free and it'll all be paid for by future generations of Americans."

Jay Leno: "And Vice President Joe Biden he stayed behind. He did not go on 
this trip. Well, thank God for that. I mean, what if there'd been an 
emergency here at home and Americans needed somebody to come up and say 
exactly the wrong thing at exactly the wrong time?"

David Letterman: "The President of the United States pulled one of those old 
things where he sneaks out in the middle of the night, heads to Afghanistan, 
shows up and surprises everybody. Now, let's be clear about something – the 
President can't travel without security, so the Secret Service went ahead of 
him to negotiate with hookers."

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