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Old 09-17-2007, 05:24 PM   #321
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Minnesota GOP Rep. Ramstad to Retire, Leaving Seat Up for Grabs

By Marie Horrigan | 4:45 PM; Sep. 17, 2007

The retirement announcement that nine-term Minnesota Republican Rep. Jim Ramstad delivered Monday afternoon was unwelcome news for national GOP strategists — who already are dealing with an uphill battle to overcome their House minority status, and will face a serious fight to hold Ramstad’s 3rd District seat in suburbs to the north, west and south of Minneapolis.

The 61-year-old Ramstad announced his plans not to seek re-election in 2008 at a mid-afternoon news conference in his hometown of Minnetonka. “Now it’s my time to do something else,” said the long-popular centrist Republican. He added, “After 17 years of commuting every week to Washington, D.C., 17 years of being gone all week, it’s time to be home with the people that I love and I miss. ... In a nutshell, it’s time to start living life.”

Democratic activists have long contended that it was only Ramstad’s personal popularity and voting record as one of the most moderate House Republicans that enabled him to regularly win with landslide margins, and they said they were prepared to highly target the 3rd District seat at whatever point Ramstad decided to step aside.

Unlike many of his GOP colleagues, Ramstad suffered no dropoff in the terrible Republican year of 2006, matching the 65 percent of the vote that he enjoyed in 2004.
Minnesota GOP Rep. Ramstad

Leaving Seat Up for Grabs???


If this guy leaves his seat up for grabs
then he better retire.
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Old 09-17-2007, 05:29 PM   #322
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My guess is that there will be a few more GOP "nice men" that choose not to seek re-election in 2008.
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Old 09-17-2007, 06:08 PM   #323
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Quote:
Originally posted by deep


Minnesota GOP Rep. Ramstad

Leaving Seat Up for Grabs???


If this guy leaves his seat up for grabs
then he better retire.


i wonder who'll come out for the race?

the Dems better not blow this one.
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Old 09-18-2007, 09:21 AM   #324
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CNN) -- Conservative Sen. Larry Craig got support from an unexpected source on Monday. The American Civil Liberties Union filed a brief in court saying the lawmaker's bathroom bust was likely unconstitutional.

The ACLU urged a Minnesota District Court to let Craig withdraw his guilty plea.

"Sen. Craig has not always been a great friend of civil liberties, but you shouldn't have to endorse the civil liberties of others to keep your own," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero, alluding to Craig's history of voting against gay rights.

Craig, R-Idaho, was arrested in June at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport in Minnesota after a police officer in a bathroom stall next to him alleged the senator attempted to solicit sex. Craig pleaded guilty August 8 to one charge of disorderly conduct. When the case came to light earlier this month, Craig announced his intention to resign September 30.

But days later, it was announced Craig would fight to overturn his conviction and may not resign. He filed papers September 10 to withdraw his guilty plea.

The ACLU friend-of-the-court brief was submitted to the Minnesota 4th District Court.

"The real motive behind secret sting operations like the one that resulted in Sen. Craig's arrest is not to stop people from inappropriate activity. It is to make as many arrests as possible -- arrests that sometimes unconstitutionally trap innocent people," Romero said in a written statement.

Police must be able to demonstrate beyond a doubt that the sex was going to happen in public, he said. Regardless of whether it occurs in a bathroom or a bar, solicitation for private sex is protected speech under the First Amendment, the ACLU argues.

If the police really wanted to stop people from having sex in public bathrooms, they "should put up a sign banning sex in the restroom and send in a uniformed officer to patrol periodically," Romero said.

Patrick Hogan of the Metropolitan Airports Commission said Monday that authorities are prepared to defend the way Craig's arrest was carried out, as well as at least 41 similar arrests made this year in the same public restroom.

"Engaging in public sex in a bathroom is a crime and most people understand that without putting up a sign," Hogan said. "We saw a lot of communication about this particular bathroom on Web sites, and if we make it known that we're aware of it we can't be expected to enforce the law as effectively."

Hogan added, "We believe the charges fit the crime and Sen. Craig agreed to the charges as part of plea negotiations."

"Government should make public restrooms safe for all, but it should do so in a manner that is really designed to stop inappropriate behavior, rather than destroying the lives of people who might have no intention of doing anything illegal," Romero said.
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Old 09-18-2007, 09:37 AM   #325
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Uh oh, another weakening of the leftist, commie ACLU argument...
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Old 09-18-2007, 10:00 AM   #326
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It must kill Craig that the ACLU is defending his conduct.
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Old 09-18-2007, 03:53 PM   #327
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He's back! Larry Craig returns to the Senate


Sen. Larry Craig on Capitol Hill on September 18, 2007. AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke.

by Jill Zuckman

A little more than two weeks after announcing he would resign from Congress following a guilty plea arising from a bathroom sex scandal, Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho) walked back into the Senate chamber Tuesday and cast two votes.

Craig, who is trying to undo his plea and fight the charges against him, spoke to a few colleagues on the floor, but mostly stood in the back of the chamber on the Republican side of the aisle. Neither Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) nor Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), spoke to him. Both have been highly critical of Craig, with McConnell calling his actions "unforgivable."

At 12:40 p.m., Craig strode out of the chamber, walking briskly down the hall to the Mansfield room for lunch with his Republican colleagues.

Asked if his presence meant he would not resign, Craig said, "No, not at all."

He said he was back in Washington to work in his office and spend time with staff. Craig originally announced he would resign as of Sept. 30th, but then seemed to suggest that he might not resign at all.

Asked if he was optimistic about his chances to get his guilty plea overturned, Craig said, "I don’t have an opinion on it," and then shut the door of the Mansfield room behind him.

Craig, spoke to a few colleagues on the floor, but mostly stood in the back of the chamber on the Republican side of the aisle. Neither Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) nor Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), spoke to him.




Is McCain becoming a coward in his old age?
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Old 09-18-2007, 04:52 PM   #328
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Originally posted by deep

Is McCain becoming a coward in his old age?


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Old 09-27-2007, 04:07 PM   #329
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Moments ago, the Senate voted 60-39 to end debate on the Matthew Shepard Act, which expands federal hate crimes laws to include violence based on a victim's sexual orientation, gender, disability, and other factors. The AP reports:

The Senate attached hate crimes legislation to a must-pass Pentagon spending bill Thursday, but opponents predicted it ultimately would fail.

"The president is not going to agree to this social legislation on the defense authorization bill," said Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. "This bill will get vetoed." [...]

The Democratic-controlled House passed the same hate crimes legislation as a stand-alone bill earlier this year despite Bush's veto threat. That makes a repeat of 2004, when the Senate passed a similar amendment to the same bill only to see it stripped out during negotiations with the Republican-led House, less likely this time around. President Bush, who says the bill is not needed, could then be faced with vetoing the vast defense authorization bill containing the same provision.

The White House had no immediate comment Thursday.

Notably, Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) voted against the legislation.
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Old 09-27-2007, 04:26 PM   #330
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Notably, Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) voted against the legislation.
After all, he isn't a homosexual.
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Old 09-27-2007, 04:30 PM   #331
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Big Grin

Thank you Mrs. Springsteen for helping me find this thread.....

I was in the Minneapolis Airport yesterday for a meeting (not in the Mens room though).

For me, the issue has moved beyond the "right and wrong" in this case, and how ANYONE can state that a judge SHOULD NOT have accepted his guilty plea. I am so puzzled by the fact that someone is saying "you are wrong for accepting my guilty plea."
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Old 09-27-2007, 05:24 PM   #332
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I am so puzzled by the fact that someone is saying "you are wrong for accepting my guilty plea."
The shifting and denial of personal responsibility is universal.
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Old 09-27-2007, 07:07 PM   #333
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Originally posted by zoney!
For me, the issue has moved beyond the "right and wrong" in this case, and how ANYONE can state that a judge SHOULD NOT have accepted his guilty plea. I am so puzzled by the fact that someone is saying "you are wrong for accepting my guilty plea."
I'm not justifying what he did, but judges do refuse to accept guilty pleas and it isn't exactly super rare either.
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Old 09-28-2007, 04:50 PM   #334
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram


I'm not justifying what he did, but judges do refuse to accept guilty pleas and it isn't exactly super rare either.
usually from mentally challenged folks only, not dishonest politicians or law makers.

dbs
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Old 10-04-2007, 01:56 PM   #335
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MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A Minnesota judge on Thursday rejected Idaho Sen. Larry Craig's bid to withdraw his guilty plea in an airport sex sting, a major setback in Craig's effort to clear his name and hang on to his Senate seat.

"Because the defendant's plea was accurate, voluntary and intelligent, and because the conviction is supported by the evidence ... the defendant's motion to withdraw his guilty plea is denied," Hennepin County Judge Charles Porter wrote.

Craig, a Republican, can appeal Porter's ruling. But it wasn't immediately clear if he would. Telephone calls and e-mails seeking comment from Craig spokesmen Sid Smith in Boise and Dan Whiting in Washington, D.C. weren't immediately returned.

When the charges first surfaced, Craig said he would resign by Sept. 30. But then he decided to attempt to re-open his legal case, and said he would stay at least until he found out whether he could withdraw his plea to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct.

If Craig resigns, Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter, a Republican, would appoint his successor.

Craig has maintained his innocence and said his actions in the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport bathroom June 11 were misconstrued by the police officer who arrested him.

The officer said Craig had looked into his bathroom stall, and tapped his foot and moved his hand under the divider in a way that suggested he was looking for a sexual partner.

Craig denied that in an interview with the officer after his arrest. But he pleaded guilty on Aug. 8. He later said he "panicked" in entering his plea, believing that it would keep the matter quiet. The Idaho Statesman had been holding back an article on rumors about his sexuality, and Craig said in court papers that he feared the arrest would trigger the story.

Porter rejected that as a good reason to withdraw the plea. Any pressure Craig was under "was entirely perceived by the defendant and was not a result of any action by the police, the prosecutor, or the court," he said.

Minnesota law allows a plea to be withdrawn if a "manifest injustice" occurs, but leaves it to judges to define that. Porter ruled that none occurred in Craig's case.

"It is not a manifest injustice to force the defendant to be bound by his plea bargain and the waivers and admissions which he made in conjunction with the execution of that bargain," Porter wrote.

He also wrote that Craig hadn't produced any "newly discovered evidence" that would clear him.

Roll Call reported Craig's arrest and guilty plea on Aug. 27. Fellow Republican senators soon called on Craig to resign, and conservative groups, which had given him near-perfect approval ratings, abandoned him quickly. Craig had been elected to Congress from Idaho in 1980 and was in his third term in the Senate.

Within days Craig said he would resign by Sept. 30. He then changed his mind, saying he would stay in office until the legal case was finished.

Prosecutor Christopher Renz had accused Craig of "politicking and game playing" with the legal system, and argued that Craig was urged to hire an attorney and had plenty of time to think about his plea.

Patrick Hogan, a spokesman for the Metropolitan Airports Commission, said in a statement that the commission, which runs Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, was pleased with the decision.

"The ruling continues to hold Senator Craig accountable for his conduct," Hogan said.
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Old 10-04-2007, 05:54 PM   #336
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Quote:


Craig Vows to Serve Out Senate Term

Oct 4 04:16 PM US/Eastern
By CHARLES BABINGTON
Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - Idaho Sen. Larry Craig defiantly vowed to serve out his term in office on Thursday despite losing a court attempt to rescind his guilty plea in a men's room sex sting.

"I have seen that it is possible for me to work here effectively," Craig said in a written statement certain to disappoint fellow Republicans who have long urged him to step down.

Craig had earlier announced he would resign his seat by Sept. 30, but had wavered when he went to court in hopes of withdrawing his plea.


In his statement, Craig said he will not run for a new term next year.

But in the meantime, he said: "I will continue my effort to clewar my name in the Senate Ethics Committee—something that is not possible if I am not serving in the Senate
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Old 10-04-2007, 05:55 PM   #337
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it's as if Gonzales has come back, yet instead of a compliant Mexican we get an uppity homo!
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Old 10-04-2007, 06:06 PM   #338
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I may be a minority here


but I think this guy is only guilty of embarrassing the GOP

they all know who their closet members are

they just don't want it out in the open
their faith-based sheep
are supposed to love the sinner, what gives
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:51 PM   #339
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Originally posted by deep
but I think this guy is only guilty of embarrassing the GOP

they all know who their closet members are



they have a closet wide stance?
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Old 10-12-2007, 11:30 AM   #340
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Lauer To Interview Sen. Larry Craig

NBC confirms Matt Lauer will interview embattled Sen. Larry Craig next Tuesday. The interview will air in a Matt Lauer Reports primetime special. Excerpts will also run on the Today show Wednesday morning. Lauer will also interview the Senator's wife, Suzanne Craig, who will be speaking publicly for the first time about the incident and the events that followed. The special may also reair on MSNBC later in the week. ICN was first to report this story yesterday.
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