Sunday 29 April 2007

The hand of history...is waving vigorously!

The next ten days should be exciting both sides of 'the pond'. In Britain the 10th anniversary of the election of the Labour Government will be celebrated (well I suppose that depends on your political view - but it will be commemorated) on Tuesday. If Thursday were in the States it would no doubt be dubbed "Super-Thursday" with elections for the Scottish Parliament; Welsh Assembly and most district councils (some like Rugby see just 1/3rd elected; many have all seats up - like Blaby & Harborough - two district councils in the parliamentary seat I stood for in 2001 & 2005). Some measure of success for the Scottish National Party could have repercussions for the future of the "United" Kingdom. Then - probably during the next week, after the May Day Bank Holiday - Tony Blair will announce his resignation as Prime Minister.

President Bush will veto the Iraq supplemental, and the two Houses of Congress will attempt to override it (According to Steny Hoyer - http://democraticleader.house.gov/docUploads/015%20Weekly%20042707.pdf?CFID=7017212&CFTOKEN=43085550

"on Tuesday, the House may consider a Veto Override on the Conference Report on H.R. 1591 - U.S. Troop Readiness, Veterans' Health and Iraq Accountability Act. Recorded votes could occur as early as 12:00 p.m."

Gonzales is still hanging on - but for how much longer? The Washington Post reported on Friday that "After releasing nearly 6,000 pages of documents related to the firings of eight U.S. attorneys, the Justice Department says it is drawing the line.

In a letter sent last night to the Senate and House Judiciary committees, Justice gave a list of 171 documents it is withholding from Congress because they involve "congressional and media inquiries" about the dismissals, seven of which occurred Dec. 7.

According to descriptions on the list, Justice will hold e-mails plotting media strategies, draft letters to Capitol Hill, various memoranda and "discussions" related to conversations between Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and lawmakers.

One e-mail from D. Kyle Sampson, Gonzales's then-chief of staff, focuses on a hotly disputed meeting in December between Gonzales and Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.). Pryor has said he felt lied to by Gonzales because the attorney general had assured him that Justice had no plans to circumvent Senate confirmation for a new U.S. attorney in Little Rock. Subsequent documents show that such a plan was discussed by Gonzales's aides before and after the Pryor meeting. Gonzales has said he opposed the idea."

So that will cool things then?

Ten days to savour - and your comments on the events will be appreciated