POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 11/8

Bush Advised to Wait on Book

With President Bush “reportedly interested in writing about his White House years,” the AP notes “publishers have a suggestion: Take your time.”

“If I were advising President Bush, given how the public feels about him right now, I think patience would probably be something that I would encourage,” said Paul Bogaards, executive director of publicity for Alfred A. Knopf, which in 2004 released Bill Clinton’s well-received My Life.” 

Clinton signed on with Knopf within months of leaving office, but his approval ratings were far higher than Bush’s.

Who Asked a Question at Obama’s Press Conference?

Nedra Pickler (AP), Lee Cowan (NBC News), Jake Tapper (ABC News), Chip Reid (CBS News), Karen Bohan (Reuters), John McCormick (Chicago Tribune), Lynn Sweet (Chicago Sun-Times), Candy Crowley (CNN), Jeff Zeleny (New York Times). 

Which network didn’t get a question? Fox News.

Most Proud of Obama’s Election

A new USA Today/Gallup survey asked how people felt about Barack Obama’s election as president: 67% said proud, 67% said optimistic, and 59% said excited. 

On the other side, 30% said pessimistic and 27% said afraid.

Republicans Look to Gingrich

Newt Gingrich “is far from a unanimous or even a consensus choice to run for president in 2012, but there is a strong feeling in Republican ranks that he is the only leader of their party who has shown the skill and energy to attempt a comeback quickly,” according to Robert Novak.

“One Republican critic of Gingrich concedes that he has an ‘unlimited’ energy flow and a constant stream of ideas, an important commodity in a party that appears to have run short of ideas during the Bush years. But there is widespread concern about what is described in the party as deep ‘character flaws’ of Gingrich’s that would be difficult to overcome in a presidential campaign.” 

“Nobody in Republican ranks, however, matches Gingrich’s dynamism.”

Byrd Leaves Committee Post

Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-WV), “the longest-serving senator in U.S. history, announced yesterday that he is stepping down as chairman of the Appropriations Committee, one of the most powerful panels on Capitol Hill,” the Washington Post reports.

Roll Call says Democratic leaders “have been struggling for months over how to displace the 90-year-old Byrd from his chairmanship and unsuccessfully tried to encourage him to relinquish the gavel on more than one occasion.”

Meanwhile, CQ notes the chain of events that the move will cause on other Senate committees.

Palin Blasts McCain Aides

Gov. Sarah Palin “fired back Friday at the unnamed McCain campaign aides who have been maligning her in recent days, saying that their criticism was ‘cruel and it’s mean-spirited, it’s immature, it’s unprofessional, and those guys are jerks,'” the New York Times reports.

“Ms. Palin fought back after the infighting had made its way up to Senator John McCain, who made it clear that that he was upset by the back and forth, and ordered his campaign workers to stop it, aides said. Some in the staff worried that questioning the qualifications of the woman Mr. McCain had chosen as his running mate was damaging his reputation.”

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