Readers take over. Final thoughts:
* BOYS STATE: I'm off to my annual debate with delegates to Boys State, where my liberal viewpoints generally inspire a warm (as in heated) response. So I'm starting the open line in the event I don't get back — in time, I mean.
* OOPS: Rep. Anthony Weiner can't say "with certitude" lewd photo wasn't of him. He still says his Twitter account was hacked; adds that photos can be manipulated.
* OOPS II: I don't expect Breitbart to fixate on it, but budget chopper Chris Christie, the New Jersey governor, used a state helicopter to ferry him and his wife to their son's baseball game.
* WHERE'S JASON TOLBERT?: I believe his absence relates to his belief that the Republican Party of Arkansas has used unfair tactics to attempt to silence a critic, Blue Hog Report. He says here an announcement is coming on future of his Republican-oriented (but not slavishly so) blog. I think he'll be back.
* TIM GRIFFIN TOES THE PARTY LINE: House Republicans staged a show vote today and Tim Griffin went along with the show. He renewed his vote to end single-payer Medicare with a voucher system that won't begin to cover health care costs over time. He renewed his support for oil company tax credits. He renewed his vote for tax breaks for millionairies. Is anybody watching? Does anybody really care? The Democratic campaign organization does:
Representative Tim Griffin (AR-02) voted again today to end Medicare and raise health care costs for Arkansas seniors. Griffin is doubling down on the House Republican plan to end Medicare, and is still refusing to end taxpayer giveaways to Big Oil or tax breaks for millionaires. In a procedural move, Griffin voted to accept the House Republicans’ controversial budget which includes the Republican plan to end Medicare.
“Representative Tim Griffin voted once again to end Medicare while protecting subsidies for Big Oil and tax breaks for millionaires,” said Jesse Ferguson of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Republicans just suffered a major political blow last week when they lost the NY-26 Special Election in an extremely conservative district because of their plan to end Medicare. We all agree we need to cut spending and reduce the deficit, but Representative Tim Griffin’s plan is for millionaires to get a $100,000 tax break and seniors to get a $6,400 medical bill. That’s not right.”