Iraq's PM slams top US soldier over Iran comments
By HAMZA HENDAWI, Associated Press Writer Hamza Hendawi, Associated Press Writer
1 hr 59 mins ago
BAGHDAD – Iraq's prime minister said in remarks aired Friday that the top U.S. commander in Iraq "risked his position" by alleging Iran was trying to bribe lawmakers to vote against the proposed security agreement with the United States.
Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki briefed top political leaders Friday about the draft agreement, which includes a timeline for U.S. withdrawal from Iraq by the end of 2011and a compromise giving Iraq authority to try U.S. contractors and soldiers for major crimes committed off-duty and off-base.
A government statement said the same group — including President Jalal Talabani, the two vice presidents and leaders of parliament — would meet again in a few days, suggesting some people raised objections.
One lawmaker who attended the meeting said there were discussions for and against the draft and that two Shiite parties boycotted the session. He spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions were confidential.
"There were thorough and important comments," presidential spokesman Nasser al-Ani said. "To the political and national blocs, the agreement remains in the phase of analysis and study."
Yeah, we're doing such a wonderful job in Iraq. - No1KState
McCain criticizes Obama's promise of tax cuts
By GLEN JOHNSON, Associated Press Writer
MIAMI – Republican John McCain told crowds in this battleground state Friday to "hold onto your wallet" because his Democratic presidential rival, Barack Obama, has talked of spreading the wealth around. McCain suggested voters could not rely on Obama's promise of tax cuts while returning once more to the story of Joe the Plumber, a regular part of McCain's speeches since the Arizona senator first mentioned the tax concerns of Ohio plumber Joe Wurzelbacher in Wednesday's presidential debate.
Florida was McCain's first stop on a two-day tour through states, including North Carolina and Virginia, where he has surrendered his lead in polls during the past month despite their history of supporting Republican presidential candidates.
Last Sunday as Obama walked through Wurzelbacher's Holland, Ohio, neighborhood, Wurzelbacher asked him whether his plan to increase taxes on those earning more than $250,000 a year would impede his ability to buy the plumbing company where he works. Obama replied that those making over $250,000 would be taxed more but that money would be returned to the middle-class through tax cuts. "I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody," Obama said.
The McCain campaign seized on that remark.
"When politicians talk about taking your money and spreading it around, you'd better hold onto your wallet," McCain told a Miami rally crowd. "Sen. Obama claims that he want to give a tax break to the middle class, but not only did he vote for higher taxes for the middle class in the Senate, his plan gives away your tax dollars to those who don't pay taxes. That's not a tax cut; that's welfare."
McCain, who bestowed the nickname "Joe the Plumber" on Wurzelbacher during the debate, claimed Friday that "the response from Sen. Obama and his campaign yesterday was to attack Joe."
In fact, Obama, his running mate Joe Biden and their campaign have barely mentioned Wurzelbacher. Obama and Biden both attacked McCain for portraying Wurzelbacher as representative of most blue-collar workers, asking how many plumbers make $250,000 a year.
Nonetheless, McCain elicited boos from a fired-up crowd when he said of Wurzelbacher, "People are digging through his personal life and he has TV crews camped out in front of his house. He didn't ask Sen. Obama to come to his house. He wasn't recruited or prompted by our campaign. He just asked a question. And Americans ought to be able to ask Sen. Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks."
You read it for yourself. McCain seems to have lot all sense of integrity. And let's make something clear again, for the past 8 years, wealth has been redistributed up to the rich. So, yes, it's time to "spread the wealth" around. We all participate in making it. We should all get our fair share. That's not socialism. That preventing a socialist movement. -No1KState