Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Daily Strike-2/28/09-Sebelius

Good evening once again from Montreal. Bad night for The Strike, as the Sharks fall to the Canadiens. But I will still perform my solemn duty and report on the day in politics.

SEBELIUS: The biggest news of the day is that Obama will reportedly tap Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius to be the next Secretary of Health and Human Services. Sebelius had indicated during the transition that she wanted to remain Governor, but she has apparently changed her mind. Sebelius was seen as the most likely choice to fill the position since former Senator Tom Daschle withdrew his name early this month because of tax issues. Sebelius, if confirmed, will be at the center of the fight for Obama's effort at comprehensive health reform. However, she will not have the dual role of health czar, as was planned for Daschle. That position will be filled separately in the coming days. Should she and Gary Locke both be confirmed, the cabinet selection process will finally come to an end.

There are a couple of interesting political consequences of this decision. First, the Kansas Senate seat held by retiring Republican Sam Brownback will almost certainly remain in the GOP column. Sebelius was considered the only Democrat to have any shot at winning a Senate seat in a reliably Republican state.

The current Lieutenant Governor is Mark Parkinson, a former Republican who switched parties to run with Sebelius in 2006. He has indicated that he will not seek reelection as governor in 2010. Therefore, it's likely that the next governor of Kansas will be Sam Brownback. Hello creationism!

FOR YOUR ENTERTAINMENT: Today at CPAC, two great Americans, Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh inspired a generation of blue sports jacket and khakis-wearing right-wingers. Using the time-tested political strategy of completely belittling vast swaths of the American population, and mocking an enormously popular President, these fine individuals brought the crowd to their feet with some of these remarkable words:

-Ann Coulter rejected Obama's comparison to Lincoln because "Lincoln wouldn't have texted with Scarlett Johannsen and wouldn't vote present." (seriously Ann, you're still on that voting present thing? That was so...last May).

-Rush Limbaugh, in a speech that went an hour longer than scheduled, said that the Republican party should not try to have better policy ideas, but instead, should try to slow down the legislative process to highlight differences in philosophy. He also claimed that liberals have psychosis, that Obama wants the country to be fearful so he can implement his radically socialist policies. He also called us out on our true objectives: "They (liberals) see these inequalities, these inequities that capitalism produces. How do they try to fix it? Do they try to elevate those at the bottom? No, they try to tear down the people at the top." Got it.

Ladies and gentleman, your 2009 Republican party.

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