Politics & Issues

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National AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka offered a rousing endorsement today of Missouri's Democratic U.S. Senate nominee, Robin Carnahan, and laid out the stakes of this fall's election in graphic terms for the state and national labor movement.

"The party of 'No' doesn't want your vote," Trumka told several hundred state labor leaders gathered at the downtown Renaissance hotel for their annual statewide AFL-CIO convention. "All they want you to do is stay home out of frustration."

As President Barack Obama prepares to announce the official end of U.S. combat in Iraq, several St. Louis area residents expressed concerns about the cost, in both lives and dollars, of the effort to bring democracy to that Middle East country.

We've all heard about the controversy of Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor rally, which took place on the 47th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream Speech." The analysis has largely been stuck on the question of whether Beck should or should not have held his rally on the landmark date.

Allen Hill, a Vietnam War veteran from Festus, is leery of the real reason the United States is ending its military operations in Iraq.

President Barack Obama's explanation to be delivered on television Tuesday night -- that it's now time for the Iraqis to defend themselves -- sounds to Hill a lot like what then-President Richard M. Nixon said in 1975, when the U.S. ended military action in Vietnam.

Express Scripts' expansion in north St. Louis County may have made the pharmaceutical supplier the darling of state and regional officials. But it's also put the growing firm at odds with some major unions, many of whom contract with the firm for their workers' medicines.

And those tensions could spread here.

This just in: Gov. Jay Nixon just named Kip Stetzler acting director of the state Department of Natural Resources following the resignation today of Mark N. Templeton.

According to Nixon: "Templeton will become the executive director of the Office of the Independent Trustees of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Trust. In that role, he will be responsible for ensuring that funds are available to address the claims of those affected by BP’s Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Templeton has been DNR director since 2009."

Jim Hacking
From law firm website

Most of us say deportation, but in legal circles, with the government and those who find themselves involved with a case, it's called removal.

The word itself pretty much describes what happens: A person is literally removed from this country for a number of reasons. But how removal works is not necessarily easy to understand or navigate.

The national Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is finally swooping into Missouri with a TV ad aimed at helping Democratic nominee Robin Carnahan by bashing her Republican rival, U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt.

Respondents of a recent Real Clear Politics Poll indicated that 50.7 percent of Americans disapprove of the job that President Obama is doing, and 61.4 percent expressed the belief that the country is on the wrong track. Similarly, an Associated Press poll released on Aug. 16, 2010, showed that only 32 percent of independents agree with the Democratic policies of the current government, down from 52 percent of independents who supported a Democratic led government at the last election.

In 1964, when Mr. Akin and I were 17, the movie "Seven Days in May" was released. Starring Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas, it is the story of an attempted military coup in the United States following the president signing a treaty with the then Soviet Union. While the movie is not considered a classic, it may have had as profound an effect on the thinking of presidents and members of Congress as any film over the past 60 years.

Fielding arrows is stickier than firing them. Just ask Pat Quinn.

His Quinntessential populism, propelled through the decades by his assaults on the antics and motives of public officials, put him in position to become governor; now he defends himself against accusations he fired his inspector general for pouncing on ethical violations.

As Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Robin Carnahan is being bombarded with negative TV attack ads, the Missouri Democratic Party has filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against one of the sources.

The lawyer for Russ Carnahan's former campaign worker accused by some of tossing a molotov cocktail into the congressman's campaign office says the worker is innocent and no evidence links him to the incident.

"He's vigorously denying the allegations,'' said lawyer Susan Roach, referring to her client, Chris Powers.

She confirmed that police investigating the Aug. 17 incident interviewed Powers, but added, "there's no evidence that would place him at the scene of the crime."

The Missouri Democratic Party owns up to two special websites -- theveryworstofwashington.com and favorofthemonth.com -- set up solely to highlight what it views as the failings of the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate, Roy Blunt.

On Monday Metro will restore much of the service it cut in March 2009 -- but if you assumed your bus will be back, you might be disappointed. The "restoration" won't be a time warp back to March 29, 2009, the day before Metro made massive service cuts in the face of a major budget shortfall.

Ray Friem, Metro's chief operating officer of transit services, prefers to call Monday's change a "redefinition" of Metro's service.

One of the most important principles the St. Louis Beacon rests upon -- if not the most important principle -- is fairness. It is naive to believe we always bat a thousand in the fairness effort. Nevertheless, when the founders set about organizing this publication several years ago, fairness was very much on our minds, and 100 percent was a goal for which we would to strive.

Missouri's two members of the U.S. Senate, Republican Christopher "Kit" Bond and Democrat Claire McCaskill, may disagree on most issues -- but are on the same page when it comes to wooing closer business ties with China.

The two are leading a state delegation to China on Sunday. The group will include "government, business and civic leaders along with the Midwest-China Hub Commission," a commission release said today.

America is a peace-loving nation. — George W. Bush

My parents were born in the decade following WW I -- also known as "The Great War," "The War to Make the World Safe for Democracy" or "The War to End All Wars." Their children were born in the decades following WW II -- an armed conflagration of global proportions that demonstrated that the first one hadn't ended wars, after all.

In the 8th District congressional contest, Democrat Tommy Sowers and Republican incumbent Jo Ann Emerson both have new TV ads on the air. Both spots go negative, which is unusual so far out before the Nov. 2 election.  

Candidates often wait until after Labor Day to take off the verbal gloves, in part because that's when voters are most likely to pay attention.

The ad attacks by Emerson and Sowers both fit in with their respective party line.

U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-St. Louis, told reporters Wednesday afternoon that it was "outrageous'' for some conservative critics to allege that his campaign had orchestrated last week's firebombing of his campaign office.

"It's very sobering when you have a fire set in your office,'' he said, calling the whole episode "a nightmare."

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