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Tim Russert of “Meet the Press” was on the "NBC Nightly News” this evening talking about Harriet Miers. He stated that the announcement of her resignation this morning is part of a new strategy by President Bush to “get control of his second term that is spiraling out of control.” In addition, according to Russert, Republicans are calling this "The week from hell.”

In Russert’s view, Republicans weren’t interested in seeing what would happen on November 7 when the confirmation hearings were scheduled to begin, and instead advised the president to “lance it now.”

Finally, Russert said that if indictments do indeed come tomorrow from Patrick Fitzgerald, "[Republicans] hope there are plea bargains and this issue is quickly resolved and settled to spare the president’s second term."

What follows is a full transcript of this report, and a video link.



People who know Harriet Miers in Dallas, Lee Cowan reported on Thursday's CBS Evening News, think she “deserved better than this" and he quickly moved to highlight those mad at conservatives, or as one cab driver charged, the “far right.” Cowan relayed that “at a Dallas diner this morning, her withdrawal served up a lot of disappointment” where patrons were upset “that conservatives, even here in her home state, weren't willing to give her a chance." Cowan went outside and leaned into a taxi to ask the driver: "What happened?” The cabbie replied: "I think the far right, they had been itching for a big battle for years." Cowan did pass along a defense of conservatives: "Dallas talk show host Mark Davis though says local conservatives are actually just trying to watch out for the President's legacy."

Over on ABC's World News Tonight, following a lead story from Terry Moran, Linda Douglass opened a piece: "Democrats were quick to blame Miers' collapse on conservative activists, who demanded loudly that the President dump her." After a clip of Senator Harry Reid scolding the “the radical right wing of the Republican Party,” Douglass picked up on how Senator Arlen Specter "said the groups drowned her and the President out." Following bites from Senator Sam Brownback and Rush Limbaugh, she returned to the anti-conservative prism from which she began, setting up a slam from Senator Ted Kennedy by relating how Democrats say "if he chooses an ideological conservative, he will appear to be the tool of outside groups," and she concluded with how “Senator [Lindsey] Graham is urging the President to appoint someone who, in his words, 'won't blow this place up'” -- meaning a non-conservative. Pivoting from Douglass, anchor Bob Woodruff turned to George Stephanopoulos and inquired: “Does he [Bush] have to nominate a conservative to satisfy the base of his party or a moderate who would be acceptable enough to Democrats to avoid a long and prolonged fight?” Stephanopoulos listed some potential nominees before warning: “Both Priscilla Owen and Michael Luttig fall into that category that Lindsey Graham talked about. They would blow the place up." (Transcripts follow.)



I have several requirements for supporting Supreme Court nominees, among them being that Chucky Schumer and Harry Reid must hate them. Let's face it, if these two clowns support you, you have about as good a chance of being a rational human being as Al Gore has of developing a personality. With that in mind, it should not be hard to understand why I practically jumped for joy when I heard that Harriet Miers was withdrawing her nomination to the high court. Even though most of my Republican friends kept telling


In his blog post today, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann not only takes credit for a World Series prediction he didn't make, but also links the Chicago White Sox' championship to...Plamegate.

(At this writing, the post in question is misdated October 24, but it's at the top of the page nonetheless.)



On to promote an annual conference on women's issues in California former NBC reporter and the current First Lady of California, Maria Shriver, stressed her desire to make sure it wasn't partisan because "that's not what I'm about." Anyone who's followed Shriver's career at NBC can't help but guffaw at that one. The following is an exchange between Matt Lauer and Maria Shriver that took place at 8:39am on this morning's Today show:



CBS News legal analyst, Andrew Cohen, today relays a conspiracy theory some have cooked up regarding the Miers nomination: Miers was never intended to sit on the Court, but rather to be a "sacrificial lamb" whose botched nomination would make it harder for liberals to sink her more conservative replacement.

Cohen himself finds the notion "only mildly paranoid when you think about it," adding:



NBC criticizes oil company profits, wondering how much is too much?


Anna Quindlen hasn't been a New York Times columnist for more than a decade, but she'd still fit in quite well on her old paper's op-ed page. In her opinion piece for the October 31 Newsweek, Quindlen takes up the inclination to psychoanalyze President Bush from one current Times columnist, Maureen Dowd, and the Iraq-is-Vietnam argument from another, Frank Rich.

Early in the column, Quindlen asserts that the Bush administration's Iraq policy



New York Times TV critic Alessandra Stanley celebrates a self-congratulatory documentary about Hurricane Katrina that features NBC anchor Brian Williams.

The liberal Stanley particularly appreciates "In His Own Words: Brian Williams on Hurricane Katrina" (airing tonight on the Sundance Channel) for showing Bush and the federal government in a poor light:


The Miers withdrawal having not yet broken and indictments in the Plame investigation still uncertain, the Early Show focused primarily on Hurricane Wilma in their first half hour's coverage. They seem to have gone for the "government response is painfully slow while people suffer" angle, casting doubt on FEMA and state disaster relief agencies as millions are still without power and face long lines for gas, food, and water.


First co-anchor Rene Syler led off at 7:05 EDT, tossing to Trish Regan live from Miami:



In wake of the Harriet Miers withdrawal of her nomination to the US Supreme Court, the Associated Press wasted little time in releasing an article trashing conservatives. Terrence Hunt found plenty of people to quote in regards to how "extreme" the Republican party is, but could find no one with any reasonable counter-arguments.

He quotes Democrats as saying: Bush has bowed to the "radical right wing of the Republican Party."



At 7:17am, in promoting an Anne Thompson piece on how "Big Oil" is enjoying record profits Couric, used the "we" word.

Katie Couric: "They say one man's pain is another man's pleasure. And it turns out the pain we all shared at the gas pump this summer brought an awful lot of pleasure in the form of big profits to the nation's oil companies.



On CNN’s American Morning, legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin was quick to attach the “very conservative” label to possible Supreme Court nominees Priscilla Owen, Janice Rogers Brown and Michael Luttig. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, however, Toobin deems to be “a lot more politically appealing.”



In a report last night on CNN’s “Newsnight,” David Ensor continually referred to CIA employee Valerie Plame as being “undercover.” In fact, the entire report was about the dire consequences to the agency as a whole as a result of such an "outing," as well as to Plame:

“Forty-two-year-old Valerie Plame Wilson, whose husband referred to her as 'Jane Bond,' is clearly now the most famous female spy in America. Exposing her as a CIA undercover officer did damage to U.S. intelligence, U.S. officials say. They refuse to be more specific.”

Unfortunately, nowhere in the report did Ensor relay to the viewer that Plame has not been undercover since 1997, and, instead, has been working for the CIA on American soil ever since. In fact, as reported by USA Today back in July 2004:



During the Clinton scandals, the media repeated attack after attack put forth by the Clinton administration against the various independent counsels charged with investigating it. Remember the Ken Starr treatment? Well, the media has finally found a special prosecutor that they like.