Anyone Wondering Whether Gregg Just Didn’t Want Scrutiny of His Office’s Favors for Abramoff?

Darn. We’ll have one less Republican in Obama’s cabinet, at least until Obama nominates Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich to the post. I’m heartbroken.

But, really, does anyone actually believe this claptrap?

However, it has become apparent during this process that this will not work for me as I have found that on issues such as the stimulus package and the Census there are irresolvable conflicts for me. Prior to accepting this post, we had discussed these and other potential differences, but unfortunately we did not adequately focus on these concerns. We are functioning from a different set of views on many critical items of policy.

Shorter Gregg: "I just completely stopped listening after the moment Obama said, ‘interested in a cabinet spot?’ and missed all his discussion of retaining the census in Democratic hands." 

Yeah, I don’t find that too plausible either.

I wonder whether Gregg simply got to the point in the vetting process where he realized that he didn’t want his life to be investigated in detail by his colleagues and the press? I mean, it was just hours after Gregg was nominated that it became clear that Gregg’s Legislative Director from 2002 to 2004, Kevin Koonce, had been trading sports and music tickets and booze for legislative favors. As the latest details on the Abramoff make clear, Abramoff and his cronies were asking for $3.5 million earmarks and the defeat of a defense appropriations bill that would have hurt Abramoff’s Native American gaming clients. Koonce’s language, "[Gregg’s office] had the proposed amendment ‘flagged,’" "I got something for you too," "Let me know if I can return the favor," and Abramoff’s language (describing a request from a potential Abramoff client), "Koonce practically lives in our various suites. We are shady," suggest Abramoff’s $10,000 investment in sports tickets did not go to waste. Koonce was delivering on Abramoff’s requests. 

Which sort of means–whether or not Gregg is a subject or a target of the investigation at the moment–his office was trading legislative favors for gifts. And those trades, whether they were made with or without Gregg’s knowledge, certainly don’t say much for Gregg’s ability to shepherd the nation’s commercial interests.

Sure, Gregg tells a nice story about how his lifetime dream was to run a census. But I suspect he’s just hoping to get out of the Senate in 2010 with his honor and his clear criminal record intact.

158 replies
    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      (still chuckling…)
      Not to take this too far OT, but on the topic of money, here’s hoping the new Secretary of Commerce appointee is asked how they plan to work with DNI Blair and deal with cybersecurity in this eCommerce age.

      I caught random bits of the DNI/Adm Blair hearing on C-SPAN today and at some point he was asked about cybersecurity and the Russian Mafia. I found myself thinking, “Well.. that only took 8 years to get some public attention…!”

      Even cursory reading about:
      – the Bernie Madoff scandal having tenacles to the Russian Mafia, and also
      – recalling an EW post about Russian Mobster Victor Bout being arrested in Thailand, and then
      – this week’s revelations of Congressman Ackerman’s description of the hysteria and panic following an electronic ‘run on the banks’ that occurred on 18 Sept 08 (hat tip to randiego, who left a link to this the other day with a “Holy Shit!” comment),
      it’s obvious that the Russian Mafia and assorted cyberThugs pose threats to ‘national’ security by way of commercial activity. (And that’s apart from the weapons and network dangers they probably pose.)

      I was only able to catch snippets of the hearing at C-SPAN of DNI Blair, but what I was able to hear sure made me think, “Man, Congress outta ask the new Sec of Commerce how they plan to work with DNI.”

      So bobschacht — d’ya think Nader would play nice with Blair?
      I gotta new suggestion for Sec of Commerce appointee: ask Blair for suggestions and work backward from there.

  1. Petrocelli says:

    As soon as I heard that Gregg withdrew, that’s what came to mind … he has Skeletons that someone found.

    • emptywheel says:

      Well, and they’re right there on the surface:

      Mr. Gregg, can you tell us what the $3.5 million earmark you pushed through for Abramoff was. Can you tell us why you supported it?

      Oh, you’re saying you relied entirely on the advice of your staff. Can you say what you would do differently to make sure Commerce wasn’t giving out grants to applicants solely on the basis of whether their Wizards box came stocked with booze? And about that DOD appropriation…

      And can you give us a list of all the recommendations Kevin Koonce made for you over that two year period? Oh, can you explain why you pushed earmarks for this and this and this tribe?

      I just don’t know whether Claire McCaskill or Barbara Boxer would have a bigger field day with this line of questioning, McCaskill bc her gig is corruption, Boxer bc she couldn’t be too happy about a hard right conservative in charge of Commerce.

      • Petrocelli says:

        Both those ladies have been nailing the Repubs so very well the last couple of weeks.

        I hope they continue to be the Spokespersons for the Dems … far, far better than Reid or Hoyer.

  2. AZ Matt says:

    Susan Collins for Commerce Secretary!!

    Harry Reid for Commerce Secretary!!

    Joe Liebermann for Commerce Secretary!!

  3. scribe says:

    Umm, EW, you say:

    Shorter Gregg: “I just completely stopped listening after the moment Obama said, ‘interested in a cabinet spot?’ and missed all his discussion of retaining the census in Democratic hands.”

    Yeah, I don’t find that too plausible either.

    Barack says:

    Senator Gregg reached out to the President and offered his name for Secretary of Commerce. He was very clear throughout the interviewing process that despite past disagreements about policies, he would support, embrace, and move forward with the President’s agenda. Once it became clear after his nomination that Senator Gregg was not going to be supporting some of President Obama’s key economic priorities, it became necessary for Senator Gregg and the Obama administration to part ways. We regret that he has had a change of heart”.

    Either Gregg was a fool (casting about for a job), or this was a calculated political hit job on Obama. I’m inclined to think the latter.

  4. Teddy Partridge says:

    This was a calculated hit job on Gregg, and well-executed. Team Obama knew the Staffer F leak was coming, they wanted to shut down a reliable, trusted conservative during the stimulus debate, and they wanted an open seat in New Hampshire in 2010.

    This one came up gold stars all around for Obama. And I called it on February 5th.

        • Larue says:

          Nah, just got to keep spreading this info hither and yonder, digg it, twit it, FB it, blogwhore it to death. Make a PR release and fax it to every editor in the nation, get CREW and or Moveon to adopt it.

          This is buyable info for the sheeple given the nature of the stim bill and how confused the sheeple are about things. The sheeple are LOOKING for people to blame . . . witness the protest at the Bankers Home . . . and tying this putz Gregg to Abramoff? Sweet. We don’t care if his constituents back him, or the GOP, it’s the SHEEPLE that are ready to start hearing things their ears weren’t open to until hard times started to hit.

          Hell, electing Obama was all ABOUT that ear opening process . . *G*

          Thanks again, Mz. Wheeler, and congrats Teddy P on the ‘calling the shot’ back when. Despite the gloom, a light is always on at the end of the tunnel from all your efforts and of those here a FDL . . . bless the DF& Vituperative H’s!!!! *G*

      • Teddy Partridge says:

        Yes, but she also told me not to hide my light under a bushel! *g*

        Dude, I make so many wild-ass predictions in FDL threads that when one of them — amazingly enough –comes true, I want to highlight that for everyone. It’ll make my next wild-ass prediction seem less crazy, maybe….

    • bonkers says:

      Boy, that’s some 3D chess board, able to see around every corner jiu jitsu you’re spouting there.

      We should start a list, since there’s been several already counting the campaign. Sure, some stuff happens out of control, but they really do think ahead…alot.

  5. Teddy Partridge says:

    I fully expect a Staffer F indictment by the end of this month. The Abramoff-related indictments are gonna come thick and fast now, or guilty pleas.

    Too bad we don’t have Deb Howell anymore to help us keep track!

    • dakine01 says:

      Except, he was going to be replaced by a Republican. that was part of the ‘deal” he struck with the supposed Demo governor of NH, he would go to Commerce and be replaced by a former staffer who would then not run in ‘10.

      • Teddy Partridge says:

        I have to wonder if the very appearance of a “deal” for a Senate seat made Team Obama very nervous. They have to get through a Blago trial in a year or so; having Judd Gregg in the Cabinet and his seat filled by a GOP because of some “deal” Gregg made with the Democratic governor was bad optics all around.

      • cinnamonape says:

        But that would have been true if his Republican replacement, Bonnie “Boohoo” Newhall, had been appointed. In a sense the Republicans were being given a two-fer: A fresh face in the Senate, and influence within Obama’s Cabinet. Now they have only the one…

        …and if that individual is facing scandal then they won’t even have the chance of using the Senate position to groom his replacement. Even with him there, and asserting that he is not running for re-election, Newhall is sitting there as a “once-rejected suitor”.

  6. acquarius74 says:

    I’m for Cynthia McKenny for Commerce Secty. That would leave a lot of Repub seats vacant due to mass coronaries.

  7. freepatriot says:

    no matter what the reason, the gop will spin this to mean gregg could not stomach the democratic agenda


    with 70% of the country VIOLENTLY REJECTING the repuglitards ideas, saying that Gregg couldn’t agree with Democratic Ideas is gonna make the 2010 senate election in New Hampshire a FUCKING WIPEOUT

    so we got our 60 seat majority, right there

    thanks for the help, mr gregg

  8. perris says:

    Darn. We’ll have one less Republican in Obama’s cabinet, at least until Obama nominates Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich to the post

    seriously obama will probably toss out a few republican replacements before the final submission, which republican do you think he would really field?

  9. cinnamonape says:

    I find it really very odd that if Gregg thinks that he’s really doing the work of the people of NH, and that his differences with Obama are such that he needs to cahmpion them in the Senate…that he’s not going to run for re-election in 2010?

    How does that mesh with his statement? Let someone else whose views might differ run for office? Or does he think that New Hampshires voters may not really be well represented by him…and they will vote him out?

    Something stinks here. Gregg uis either facing some scandal…or is going to be doing the RNC’s bidding to such a degree that no reasonable citizen of NH WOULD vote for him in 2010, and he knows it.

    • emptywheel says:

      He is facing scandal–Abramoff.

      But I also think he thought Commerce would be a quick way out of being in the minority. And then his party got to him.

      I wonder what they offered? RNC after Steele gets chased out bc of scandal?

  10. Blub says:

    I’m completely confused. Commerce for Obama is turning out to be Clinton’s Justice Dept (if I remember correctly, he went through three nominees before one stuck).

  11. freepatriot says:

    ohhh, turns out that gregg is already PACKING HIS FUCKING BAGS

    so there’s ANOTHER open Senate Seat in a State Obama won

    that campaign of ”NO” is getting a BIG response

    unfortunatly for the repuglitards, the response is mostly negative, as in: ”ARE YOU FUCKING STUPID ???”, and ”HOW FUCKING STUPID DO YOU THINK I AM ???”

    heck of a job, georgie …

  12. Stormwatcher says:

    Tin foil time – Could the Republicans have been so upset with Gregg’s “turn to the other side” that they blackmailed him into resigning just so they could blame Obama? They could disgrace an apparent moderate republican and President Obama at the same time. It would be easy to nail Gregg, having access to the inside scoop on Abramoff and Gregg’s office. Offing Gregg in such a manner would surely help to enforce party line loyalty.

      • bobschacht says:

        “And McCain has the inside scoop on Abramoff…and he’s PISSED.”

        This is an interesting point. McCain has a huge pile of Abramoff papers from back in the days when he ran the Interior committee. He isn’t letting Democrats look through those papers. I wonder if his store of Abramoff documents didn’t give him some juicy tidbits to use against fellow Republicans, and I wonder if he didn’t cash in some of those chits during the Republican primaries. The only flaw in this theory is that McCain is too technology-impaired to get full value out of his document cache.

        BTW, I think a priority of the Democrats ought to be to pry that stash out of McCain’s hands. He retains control due to a gentleman’s agreement among Senators, IIRC.

        Bob in HI

        • LS says:

          I’m pretty sure that Dem Dorgan took over that “committee”…and has been silent ever since. I’m not sure if he is in control during the 111th though. Indian Affairs Committee

          That is where the Abramoff documents are…I think.

        • Teddy Partridge says:

          The other flaw in that theory is that McCain’s primary opponents were Rudi and Huck and Mitt. None of these had any reason for a relationship with Abramoff during the time of the Interior Committee investigation. I wouldn’t put it past McCain to have used — or to be continuing to use! — the papers against other GOPs, just as Cheney wielding the extensive Veep vetting dossiers he compiled on almost every GOP in 2000.

          But I don’t see who McCain’s target would have been during the primary. Hunter and Tancredo were simply not threats worth swatting at, and only they could plausibly be in McCain’s Abramoff files.

          • bobschacht says:

            “he other flaw in that theory is that McCain’s primary opponents were Rudi and Huck and Mitt. None of these had any reason for a relationship with Abramoff during the time of the Interior Committee investigation.”

            But maybe McCain’s dirt file is why there weren’t more Republican challengers, and why Rudi, Huck, and Mitt did not get much support from other Republicans in Congress? (Hey, I’m just grasping at straws.)

            Bob in HI

    • phred says:

      Seems unlikely. No conservative Republican will win in NH in 2010, so I doubt the Rethugs would hand the Dems another Senate seat if they could help it.

    • cinnamonape says:

      The logic of that would require them to spread it about amongst fellow Republicans that Gregg was involved in a scandal that theRNC used against him. That would make it more likely that Gregg would lose his seat, since Republicans are sure to leak just about anything. Unlike a year ago, they no longer control the DOJ, so such a tactic could backfire, and lead to his actual resignation…despite his effort to kow-tow. Loss of seat!

      The other Republicans this is used on would likely start leaving Congress…wait, notce how many upcoming resignations there are! Lots of vacated Republican seats will be available in both Houses in 2010.

  13. LS says:

    Anyone consider the possibility that Obama’s nomination of Gregg was a great chess move by Obamaco? Surely, his people knew about the Abramoff connections and that those things would be scrutinized during vetting…What the nomination has accomplished is flushing out a bird from the weeds, who won’t now even says he won’t run for office next year to boot…then Obama can just move along to another nominee. Just a thought.

  14. LabDancer says:

    First: a few thoughts supporting Fearless Leader’s take as more plausible-

    [1] Gregg could not claim to be ignorant of Obama’s views on tax cuts for stimulus: the contrast between Obama’s and those of McCain came up in all three debates, and in each case fronted, backed or both by at least one major policy speech by the candidate. Indeed, the two major surprises in PBHO’s draft Stim were in terms of size [compared to the size urged on by Krugman et al to address closing the shortfall of demand against GDP] and of how much of it was made up of tax cuts. Since the House version certainly did nothing to those tax cuts and the Senate version added to them, are we supposed to believe that Gregg, a leading GOOPer on promoting tax cuts, lost confidence in the administration due to too MUCH tax cutting?

    [2] My recollection is that the word on the Census being taken out of the Commerce Dept came out, not just on the same day, but right on the heels of the advance news on PBHO nominating Gregg for SoC — not reaction to actual balking from lefty constituencies like Afr-Ams, DFHs and commie bloggers, but if anything giving off the appearance of Gregg having signed off on or possibly even suggested the Census being carved out in order to relieve him of its burdens.

    So that leaves us with one or both of these:

    [3] Tearing up over being rejected or worse by his former BFFs [”She’s a witch! Burn her!”]. I’m not sure we can reject this out of hand, because the winger reaction to the Gregg nomination does seem in contrast with the one to Ray Lahood for SoT. But – Lahood’s from Illinois & had resigned from Wingotopia, and where everyone knew Gregg’s name at Club fer Growth, Lahood never even tried [apparently one way for an R to get a “zero” rating from that bunch] & was in fact 1 of only 3 Rs who refused to sign Newt’s Nineteen-aught-Ninety-Four Manifesto. So are we to believe Gregg never understood the difference in their circumstances? Still, the profile suggests his being attacked by BFFs would be a new experience & disturbing.

    [4] Could his huge investments in Bank of America be another clue?

  15. LS says:

    Now, I hope Obama nominates Issa or Cantor…that would warrant more popcorn…pick ‘em off one by one by one…

  16. Teddy Partridge says:

    The very end of Gregg’s statement has a whiff of doth-protest-too-much:

    As a further matter of clarification, nothing about the vetting process played any role in this decision. I will continue to represent the people of New Hampshire in the United States Senate.

    • phred says:

      Yes, but I bet he is looking hard for plan b. In the last two election cycles rock solid red NH has turned very very blue. In my opinion (I work in the Granite State) his prospects are not good (unless the Dems totally implode in the next 18 months). I saw Gregg at a local event last fall and he looked tired and depressed. He might not have been, but that’s how he looked to me. I bet he was angling for a cabinet position so he would have an excuse not to run. I would bet that we will see him turn up as a lobbyist before too long…

  17. Blub says:

    the more I think about it, the better I think somebody like Levy might be a good thing for this job. From the lecture linked to the NYT article above:

    “Tonight I will argue that institutions – unions, the minimum wage, the tax system, accounting conventions and ultimately the tone set by the government – have the power to either moderate or reinforce the underlying market… In my story, the inequality we see today reflects continued market pressures unhampered by institutional restraint.”

    “As a result, we are seeing two values in conflict. On the one hand, we value the power of markets to allocate resources efficiently and that includes allocating labor. On the other hand we recognize that mass upward mobility is an important part of the American Dream. The conflict arises when, as is the case today, a free labor market no longer produces mass upward mobility.”

    He’s also a great communicator of his ideas…

  18. neurophius says:

    In the spirit of true bipartisanship, maybe Gregg was pushed aside to make room for the head of the Republican Party, Rush Limbaugh.

    Or would that be for the head of the Republican Party, Sarah Palin?

    • rosalind says:

      (ok i don’t normally resort to busting on someone’s appearance, but based on current photos of Rushbo that man’s a half-case of sugar donuts shy of being a Lucasfilm life model for Jabba the Hut. if he wants to continue he’s mighty reign, he might want to ditch the golfcart and walk the freakin’ course.)

      • perris says:

        . if he wants to continue he’s mighty reign, he might want to ditch the golfcart and walk the freakin’ course.

        even republicans hate rush, he has no “reign”, he is reacerting himself into the dialogue because if he does not his sponsors are gonna drop him

        when democrats are forced to talk about him they should refer to him as the laughable clown that he is, as responsible as rove for the fall of the republican party

        his head will explode

        • SouthernDragon says:

          ClearChannel is cutting jobs, which means ad revenues are down. Limpdick will still be syndicated but stations are beginning to look at the cost of carrying such shows. A lot cheaper to use programmed music.

          Limpdick brags about being on 600+ stations. Democracy Now! is carried by a couple hundred more.

  19. Prairie Sunshine says:

    Don’t know about the other guys but Brian and Chuckie conveniently forgot to mention on Nightly News that Gregg lobbied for Commerce Secretary.

    Oh, and the answer is “yes,” EW.

  20. freepatriot says:

    in case anybody is confused about gregg’s demise, here’s the reason:

    When the Manchester Union Leader first reported in a brief, six-graph story that President Obama’s nominee for Commerce Secretary had ”recused myself from voting during the pendency of my nomination,” the reader comments immediately poured in.

    Ann, of Ashland, N.H. wrote, ”I am very disappointed with SENATOR Gregg’s decision. NH’s representation has been compromised,” followed by Tom of Campton, ”Either do your job or resign,” and then by Dennis from Merrimack, ”I’ve got this violent urge to hurl! He should consider never returning to New Hampshire. What a disgrace!!!!!”

    the repuglitards painted themselves into a corner, folks

    lush limpbag’s ”I hope he fails” statement has been interpreted by Americans as a ”FUCK YOU” from the repuglitards

    ever seen ”Born In East LA” ???

    fuck me ??? NO, FUCK YOU !!!

  21. FrankProbst says:

    Good riddance. No matter how they try to spin this, I think Obama’s going to come out on top. He can now say that he was totally willing to put a conservative Republican in charge of Commerce, AND he can put a liberal Democrat in instead. Gregg’s reasons for bowing out are exactly that–Gregg’s. He wasn’t forced out by us. He quit for his own reasons. This is a win-win for us.

  22. LS says:

    Maybe Holder went to his first day of work and looked in the Abramoff file, called Obama and said DUDE…Listen to this!!!!!!

  23. maryo2 says:

    Maybe Abramoff associate Todd Boulanger’s plea deal shed some light on had Sen. Gregg recently. TPM and the AP reported on Boulanger yesterday and today Gregg drops out.

  24. Teddy Partridge says:

    Gregg would have had to portray himself as either knowing about Staffer F’s vote-trading with Abramoff’s underling, or oblivious. Neither speaks well to his management abilities or style. But I also believe there’s more coming, and soon.

  25. neurophius says:

    Tweety asks, “how big of a blow to Obama is it that Gregg has withdrawn?

    Framing it as definitely a blow to Obama to some degree.

  26. mamazboy says:

    Yeah, but it’s a shame the corporate media seems to have stopped paying attention to Abramoff and his many tentacles.

  27. dosido says:

    I think this stupidity is brilliant. Obama picks a sleazier nominee for the commerce position to outsleaze the dem nominee. bwahaha. cue organ sting music.

    who has mud on their faces???

  28. Teddy Partridge says:

    Judd Gregg lobbied for this job.

    The job has not changed since Judd Gregg lobbied for it, except for the Census carve-out, which may have actually been explained to him before he was nominated.

    His Staffer, F, has been named in an Abramoff plea.

    The stimulus bill passed the Senate without his support or opposing vote.

    Now Gregg has withdrawn his name, without having notified the White House of his impending press conference.

    At that presser, Gregg announced he would also not seek re-election.

    So, what changed? What happened? Has Gregg been this erratic in the past?

  29. punaise says:

    Gregg Joad:

    The narrative begins from Joad’s point of view just after he is paroled from prison for homicide relieved of duty at the Commerce Dept. On his journey home, he meets a now-former preacher, Jim Casy Rick Warren, whom he remembers from his childhood, and the two travel together. When they arrive at his childhood farm home, they find it deserted. Disconcerted and confused, they to his Uncle John’s home nearby where he finds his family loading a converted Hudson truck with what remains of their possessions; their crops stocks were destroyed in the Dust Bowl crash of ‘08 and as a result, the family had to default on their loans. With their farm repossessed, the Joads seek solace in hope….

  30. Blub says:

    I think another aspect of the Judd appointment was that Obama wanted to send a message to concerned foreign governments that we remain committed to free trade. But didn’t he realize that there are Dems who fit this bill as well, and that there’s a difference between free trade and crony capitalism.

    • Hugh says:

      But didn’t he realize that there are Dems who fit this bill as well, and that there’s a difference between free trade and crony capitalism.

      Not as currently practiced.

  31. punaise says:

    the next Commerce nominee should not have double consonants at the end of a one syllable name.

    I guess that rules out Bill Clinton.

  32. JohnLopresti says:

    One of the partisan pushbacks is 2010 census. Maybe Gregg has some Mehlman conduit, as well, should the interstate commerce suit against the Dem phonebank blaster ever recrudesce. Then there is always the allusion I read the other day about Hagel, should he become Gregg’s replacement nominee: Hagel exited an executive position for the voting machine company which had the state contract to place machines for the election he won 1996, appearances.

    I suspect, if there is a thorough investigation by Iglesias, vote suppression and caging will be in the news in 2010 and those strategies lessened in effectiveness for Republicans, plus the civil division is reforming under the new administration. The census is another Rove strategem of opportunity. These are my perspectives, having worked in electoral law consulting a while in the past. One keeps meeting Republicans in that penumbral world. Though maybe Gregg has naught to do with less straightforward electoral modes. One report I read during the 2008 primaries cited uncertified replacement of memory cards by unlicensed techs on election day in NH. Think I will walk out to the windy beach now.

  33. LS says:

    I bet that vote can’t pass…unless the Dems make more huge concessions; which could explain the delay…maybe the leadership knew Gregg was going to back out.

  34. freepatriot says:

    I’ve been wondering what it would take to snap the repuglitards back into reality

    maybe if diaper boy gets spanked by the porn star

    that might do it

    anybody got any other ideas about how to cure stupidity ???

    • Loo Hoo. says:

      anybody got any other ideas about how to cure stupidity ???

      Smarties. I’ve seen them in the grocery at Halloween. Don’t know how pharma is involved.

  35. JoeBuck says:

    Actually, I don’t think that Abramoff was the issue at all. He could have completely skated on those matters because of the tradition of “senatorial courtesy” where all Senators pretend to be best buddies with each other. He wouldn’t have been challenged on the Abramoff matter at all, and the senators questioning him, if someone did bring up the issue, would accept his blaming the whole thing on the aide.

    It was the right wing yahoos attacking him for associating with That Man that got to him, I’m sure.

    Oh, LS: on a filibuster, abstaining is the same as voting against, so if Gregg decides to vote against, that doesn’t change the count. They got three Republicans last time, they only need two to get 60.

  36. freepatriot says:

    ain’t it terrible that Obama used Lincoln’s birthday to launch a partisan attack

    in 3, 2, 1, …

    no matter what Obama says

  37. RevBev says:

    And I remembered that call and posted so on an earlier post….good for you O Smart one. Thanks for the good news. Isn’t fun to be right?

  38. Hmmm says:

    Sure, Gregg tells a nice story about how his lifetime dream was to run a census.

    Gregg needs to get better dreams, if I may be so bold.

  39. KayInMaine says:

    I think Gregg was forced by McConnell, Boner, and others to choose party loyalty over working for President Obama. Gregg’s state of New Hampshire is very blue right now and I think he truly reached out to President Obama to help him get commerce back on track. It was the WATBs of the republic party who thought otherwise.

    The republicans will continue to block & delay anything President Obama tries to do and if they have to pull out a guy who truly wants to work with the president, they will.


    • freepatriot says:


      The Republican Party is a cancer on America

  40. BlueStateRedHead says:

    Dengre has a Gregg/Abramoff diary on rec list at Dkos.
    Gregg’s aide is toast. Gregg is the jam on the toast. Beginning with being a Scotland golfing buddy of Jack’s.

    also Dengre is really Great on deep deep NH roots of conservatism and thus corruption.

  41. BAmer says:

    MTW – if you’re right then the Obama administration should be ashamed of picking him in the first place. What kind of vetting are they doing? I’m not one for blaming them TOO much for the Daschle mess, but this kind of thing should have floated to the surface before he was announced.

    Isn’t there a chance that the census thing is the real reason here? This is a big deal to Republicans. They need to undercount certain groups to help them stay relevant. If the Obama administration told him that he wasn’t going to be able to do that, maybe his whole reason for wanting to be at Commerce evaporated.

    Whatever the reason, I’m glad he’s out. Think an actual… oh, I don’t know… DEMOCRAT will be nominated for this DEMOCRATIC administration?

    • Hmmm says:

      Isn’t there a chance that the census thing is the real reason here? This is a big deal to Republicans. They need to undercount certain groups to help them stay relevant.

      Interesting parallel, Israel would seem to have the same problem in re. any 1-state solution. When there is a tension between actually being a democratic state vs. maintaining the state’s historical demographic identity, some folks will start playing with equal representation.

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