If you'd asked Nick Yarris how old he was, on May 17, 2004 -- his 43rd birthday -- he'd have told you, "121 days." For the rest of his life, Yarris will have his regular birthday and the day he was born again: January 16, 2004, the day he walked out of the Pennsylvania State Correctional Institution at Greene a free man after 22 years on death row.
Carlos Kelly was six years old when, in December of 1991, his mother, Caridad, was arrested by federal agents in Florida for conspiracy to distribute cocaine.
"I remember it was, like, me and my stepbrothers and sisters, we was all gathered in the playroom," says Carlos, now 16. "I told my mom that the Nintendo was broke--this is what I remember the most--I asked my mom if she could get us a new one. She went out to get the new Nintendo, and she never came back."
After years of following the Republican Party as it side-stepped rightward like a drunk at a Bob Barr confederate-pride cookout, and months of watching George W.'s slight grin of "bipartisanship" pasted over his very partisan agenda, a Republican has finally had the courage to stand up and admit that the party he joined no longer exists.
Exhausted by six months of Republican howlers -- those distortions, prevarications, hypocrisies, and Bushisms so blatant that even mildly informed observers burst into howls of laughter when they read them -- Jim Jeffords, Senator from Vermont, is expected to announce that he will leave the Republicans to become an Independent. The question now is, which howler did it?
Tuesday, as their party sold its constituents down the river on the John Ashcroft nomination, Democratic Senators Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton publicly recited the Edgar Allen Poe poem "The Raven" to their counterparts from Maryland. The New York senators had lost a bet over the Superbowl -- in which the New York Giants lost to the Baltimore Ravens. At least the Baltimore Ravens know what good defense is. In the spirit of bipartisanship, we at The Electronic Policy Network offer our version:
Yesterday, the Judiciary Committee voted 10 to eight to send John Ashcroft's nomination for attorney general to the Senate floor. The "aye" votes included every Republican on the committee and Democratic Senator Russell Feingold. Feingold told the committee that he voted for Ashcroft because it is customary to give the president his cabinet. As he righteously explained, "The Senate has nearly uniformly sought to avoid disapproving nominations because of their philosophy alone, and I believe that we should not begin to do so now."