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Frist Changes Position, Says He Now Supports Port Security Plan
San Luis Obispo Tribune ^ | 02/26/2006 | Ryan Alessi

Posted on 02/26/2006 5:18:03 AM PST by JackQuickFrost

LEXINGTON, Ky. - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist said Saturday night that after recent briefings, he is now comfortable with an Arab-owned company running port security for six American cities and backed off a pledge to pass legislation to stop the deal.

But Frist, a Tennessee Republican who was in Lexington for a state GOP dinner, told reporters that the next few days will be crucial for other members of Congress to press intelligence officials about the details of such an arrangement.

"My comfort level is good, but I have 99 other United States senators who need the opportunity to ask their questions," he said before speaking to 900 Kentucky Republicans at Lexington Center.

"We're behind the president 100 percent. We believe the decision in all likelihood is absolutely the right one," Frist added.

Last weekend, it became public that the Bush administration had approved the sale of a port operations company to Dubai Ports World.

On Tuesday, Frist initially criticized the move and threatened legislation to stop it. Friday, aides to Frist told The Washington Post that he would wait to be briefed by the company before taking a stand. He said Saturday night that many of his fears were allayed by briefings by his aides.

While he said Saturday night that legislation may not be necessary now, he said having "30 to 45 days" to step back and evaluate the deal still could be necessary. A first deadline comes Thursday when the contract with Dubai Ports World is expected to be consummated.

"If there's some question about the diagnosis, then maybe we need to get a second opinion,"said Frist, a former heart surgeon.

Frist, following a host of Kentucky Republican politicians, then went on to give a stock political speech with an angle toward the 2006 elections to the audience who paid $75 per plate to attend Saturday night's statewide Lincoln Day Dinner. Scores of them also wrote $1,000 checks for a pre-dinner reception. All the money goes into the Kentucky Republican Party's coffers.

Frist hammered on the notion that grass-roots efforts must be the GOP's strength.

The Kentucky Democratic Party, in a pre-emptive strike, issued a statement Friday saying Frist had "failed the American people" by allowing "tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and I outsourcing of American jobs overseas."

Frist included his own dig at Democrats in his remarks. "What do they really believe? What do they really stand for? Do they really know where they're going?" he asked. "That's the difference between us and them."

Other top Kentucky GOP officials, including Senate President David Williams and House minority leader Jeff Hoover, rallied the faithful in preparation for this fall's legislative election.

And as they took turns at the podium, the health of Gov. Ernie Fletcher became a recurring topic. He is recovering from pancreatitis and the removal of his gallbladder and did not attend.

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell noted that he spoke with Fletcher by phone Saturday and said, "He sounded strong."

First lady Glenna Fletcher then read to the crowd a lengthy letter written by the governor that largely echoed his statewide policy speech last month.

One notable addition, however, got some chuckles. "Working with partisan Democrats has been bitter, but I didn't realize it was having such an effect on my gallbladder," Glenna Fletcher read.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Government; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Tennessee; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 109th; bds; billfrist; dubaiportsworld; frist; iran; israel; kneejerkflipflop; ports; uae; waronterror; wasaginnowisfor
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1 posted on 02/26/2006 5:18:07 AM PST by JackQuickFrost
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To: JackQuickFrost

Too bad the MAJORITY LEADER of the Senate couldn't do his homework before his Presidential ambitions decided he needed to get infront of a camera.

Don't waste your time and money running for the Oval Office Frist, ain't gonna happen.


2 posted on 02/26/2006 5:23:08 AM PST by digger48
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To: JackQuickFrost

Good for him!


3 posted on 02/26/2006 5:23:15 AM PST by Perdogg ("Facts are stupid things" - Pres. Ronald W. Reagan)
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To: JackQuickFrost

Makes him look pretty unpresidential.


4 posted on 02/26/2006 5:25:16 AM PST by Mr. Brightside (I know what I like.)
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To: digger48

He really should learn to do a tad of research first. He is definitely not presidential material.


5 posted on 02/26/2006 5:25:34 AM PST by Peach
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To: JackQuickFrost
February 21st, 2006 - WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D. (R-TN) today made the following statement on the deal proposed by Dubai Ports World of the United Arab Emirates that would give the company day-to-day management of six major U.S. sea ports:

"Recent reports that a company based in the Middle East is seeking to purchase the operating rights to several U.S. ports raise serious questions regarding the safety and security of our homeland. The decision to finalize this deal should be put on hold until the Administration conducts a more extensive review of this matter.

"It is important for Congress to be involved in this process. I have requested a detailed briefing on this deal.

"If the Administration cannot delay the process, I plan on introducing legislation to ensure that the deal is placed on hold until this decision gets a more thorough review.

"This is not the first time questions have been raised about the Executive Branch's review process, led by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, for these types of transactions. These deals could have a major impact on America's security, the protection of which is our greatest responsibility. The CFIUS process needs to be more transparent and include a role for Congress that includes reviewing these deals, and possibly voiding them if necessary."

http://frist.senate.gov/ ...PressRelease_id=2269

Note the multiple comments, including one that Congress should be more involved in the process in the long run. LOL.

I wonder if he'll put a new press release up this week.
http://frist.senate.gov/ <- check here

6 posted on 02/26/2006 5:25:36 AM PST by Cboldt
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To: Mr. Brightside
Makes him look pretty unpresidential.

I'm still unclear as to who ever thought he was presidential material to begin with, outside of Frist himself, of course.

This Tennessean is glad he won't be running again for the Senate. I hope he takes Lamar! with him......

7 posted on 02/26/2006 5:28:31 AM PST by Thermalseeker
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To: JackQuickFrost
"Shut your mouth, Frist and get behind the President. This is an election year."
8 posted on 02/26/2006 5:29:07 AM PST by manwiththehands (Fighting daily against the dominant CINO culture ... in Washington ... and on FR.)
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To: Peach

No matter which side he came down on in the end, his completely uninformed statements were ridiculous.


9 posted on 02/26/2006 5:29:09 AM PST by digger48
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To: JackQuickFrost

Good Lord, Frist is a spineless weasel. Now neither side of the argument respects him.


10 posted on 02/26/2006 5:29:20 AM PST by LibertarianInExile (Freedom isn't free--no, there's a hefty f'in fee--and if you don't throw in your buck-o-5, who will?)
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To: JackQuickFrost

Why is the party leadership getting behind an issue which is wildly unpopular?

Just 17% of Americans believe Dubai Ports World should be allowed to purchase operating rights to several U.S. ports. A Rasmussen Reports survey found that 64% disagree and believe the sale should not be allowed

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/2006/February%20Dailies/Dubai%20Ports.htm


11 posted on 02/26/2006 5:30:13 AM PST by nj26
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To: Thermalseeker
guess you already have your harold ford jr sign
12 posted on 02/26/2006 5:32:28 AM PST by sticker
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To: Cboldt

This is a shining example of Congress overstepping it's authority. There was a process, and it was followed.

FReepers learded about this while everyone was orgasmic over Cheney shooting his buddies face off with a Howitzer. To bad our Congresscritters and their staff don't cruise by here once in a while to see what's happening in the World.


13 posted on 02/26/2006 5:34:57 AM PST by digger48
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To: nj26
Why is the party leadership getting behind an issue which is wildly unpopular?

Why are you parroting the schumer/MSM lies, you know the incessant lie that the UAE was "taking over" the ports, when they are not.

Even something like 61% of the American people don't know that foreign firms already operate container terminals.

If the press had been truthful and not hyperbolic, the polls would be different, IMO.

14 posted on 02/26/2006 5:35:24 AM PST by Dane ( anyone who believes hillary would do something to stop illegal immigration is believing gibberish)
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To: digger48
The queue to eat crow starts forming....
15 posted on 02/26/2006 5:37:27 AM PST by PrinceOfCups (Just the facts, Ma'am.)
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To: nj26

Of course the Port Critics love to quote the Polls that were conducted while their hysteric lying was still going on. Now that the facts are coming out and people understand that this has NOTHING to do with Port Security or "running our ports" and are rapidly switching their positions. It is only the knee jerk Bush haters who still refuse to admit how clueless they were on this issue.


16 posted on 02/26/2006 5:38:42 AM PST by MNJohnnie ("Good men don't wait for the polls. They stand on principle and fight."-Soul Seeker)
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To: nj26

Because leadership is about doing the correct thing NOT whoreing after the Polls. You need to switch sides. Whoring after the Polls is what the Democrat Leadership does.


17 posted on 02/26/2006 5:39:59 AM PST by MNJohnnie ("Good men don't wait for the polls. They stand on principle and fight."-Soul Seeker)
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To: digger48

"cruise by here once in a while to see what's happening"

I must say that my first reaction to this deal was much like the rest of the population that relies on nothing but the lsm. Fortunately, I DO have FR come cruising to ifor the truth.


18 posted on 02/26/2006 5:42:01 AM PST by freeangel ( (free speech is only good until someone else doesn't like what you say))
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To: MNJohnnie

Any bets on when Hannity (or others) will begin to back pedal? Put me down for Tuesday, 1:14PM MST.


19 posted on 02/26/2006 5:45:10 AM PST by Dr. Ed Bravo (<-------- Screen name now obsolete)
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To: JackQuickFrost
Hey Frist, guess who's already here. National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia. Notice two prominent buildings in background.

Source:http://www.nscsaamerica.com/marine_term.htm

20 posted on 02/26/2006 5:50:03 AM PST by jslade (Liberalism ALWAYS accomplishes the exact opposite of it's stated intent!)
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To: Dane
Why are you parroting the schumer/MSM lies, you know the incessant lie that the UAE was "taking over" the ports, when they are not. Even something like 61% of the American people don't know that foreign firms already operate container terminals. If the press had been truthful and not hyperbolic, the polls would be different, IMO.
Just for my information, were there any prominent republicans who spoke out with clarity on this issue and who did not just get swamped with the media hype? Why are we always behind the curve?
21 posted on 02/26/2006 5:50:33 AM PST by Nanny7
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To: digger48

Too bad the MAJORITY LEADER of the Senate couldn't do his homework before his Presidential ambitions decided he needed to get infront of a camera.

Don't waste your time and money running for the Oval Office Frist, ain't gonna happen.


You are 100 percent correct!!!!!!!! In fact that is the smartest thing I have heard in awhile. The Majority Leader is certainly allowed to disagree with the President anytime he fells he needs to, BUT when he gets in front of the camera and spreads bad information than that is when he crossed the line. This was another misstep in his horrible leadership tenure. If only he would have kept his opinion to himself and made a sound decision once he had all the facts than he would have been better off and so would the country. Too bad he is not a freeper. He could have used his venting on the website and then learned from it and made a reasonable decision after getting the facts from us...Talk about a flip flopper (Look I am on this issue also, but he seems to be doing this a lot!!!!! Plus, I don't hold any office and he supposedly does)


22 posted on 02/26/2006 5:50:43 AM PST by napscoordinator
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To: freeangel

Mine too! Kinda like the morning I woke to see "W" standing there with Harriet Myers. I remember the lump in my throat moving to my stomach and finally ending up in the back of my shorts.


23 posted on 02/26/2006 5:50:51 AM PST by digger48
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To: Dr. Ed Bravo

I saw Hannity live here in Pittsburgh yesterday. He mentioned the ports deal briefly, still with the indication that he was opposed to it, but didn't dwell on the issue. I'll be interested to see how his view progresses in the coming days.


24 posted on 02/26/2006 5:50:53 AM PST by rightwingintelligentsia
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To: digger48
... his completely uninformed statements were ridiculous ...

ALL of Congress looked rediculous last week.

25 posted on 02/26/2006 5:51:01 AM PST by JoeGar
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To: nj26
"Just 17% of Americans believe Dubai Ports World should be allowed to purchase operating rights to several U.S. ports."

I am surprised that as many as 17% of Americans are not ignorant to the facts.

26 posted on 02/26/2006 5:53:13 AM PST by verity (The MSM is comprised of useless eaters)
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To: JackQuickFrost

One would think these Republicans would get tired of being twisted and turned by the liberal mind. Come on, this is the same bunch that tried everything to save Saddam, and now they pretend to be worried about our security.


27 posted on 02/26/2006 5:53:39 AM PST by Just mythoughts
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To: JoeGar
ALL of Congress looked ridiculous last week.

Agree. They're becoming a national embarrassment.

28 posted on 02/26/2006 5:56:49 AM PST by Right_in_Virginia
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To: Just mythoughts

I think this saying about the DEMS is appropriate...


"A broken clock is right at least twice a day."

I can't get behind this just because the Dems are against it.


29 posted on 02/26/2006 5:56:51 AM PST by FerkFick
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To: Nanny7
Just for my information, were there any prominent republicans who spoke out with clarity on this issue and who did not just get swamped with the media hype? Why are we always behind the curve?

Not that I know of, all of them knee jerkingly spoke and got their information from the MSM, instead of researching it themselves.

30 posted on 02/26/2006 5:59:02 AM PST by Dane ( anyone who believes hillary would do something to stop illegal immigration is believing gibberish)
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To: manwiththehands
This is an election year

Which is exactly why the GOP seemingly grew a pair with this issue. The truth is once again the are following the lead of the dems who understood from the outset how to manipulate the fear of the voters by whipping them into a frenzy.

31 posted on 02/26/2006 6:02:03 AM PST by Protect the Bill of Rights (GOP, The Other France)
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To: JackQuickFrost
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist said Saturday night that after recent briefings, he is now comfortable with an Arab-owned company running port security for six American cities...

Either misleading or an outright lie... An Arab-owned company will be runing port operations, not security. This is why this issue cannot be fairly discussed. Too many people won't talk about the real issue. It is too much fun to carry it to extremes so no one has to think.

32 posted on 02/26/2006 6:02:23 AM PST by TN4Liberty (Sixty percent of all people understand statistics. The other half are clueless.)
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To: digger48

Frist doesn't know what time it is.


33 posted on 02/26/2006 6:04:52 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: Mr. Brightside
Makes him look pretty unpresidential.

He has been consistently un-presidential; I wonder how much it cost to buy him?
34 posted on 02/26/2006 6:05:49 AM PST by ARCADIA (Abuse of power comes as no surprise)
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To: Dr. Ed Bravo
Any bets on when Hannity (or others) will begin to back pedal? Put me down for Tuesday, 1:14PM MST.

Too early. It takes at least a half hour for him to run through his standard "we are the best, the most comprehensive, blah ... blah ... blah" spiel followed by lengthy blurbs telling us what he is going to tell us when he finally tells us. I have enjoyed his broadcasts since his first day in Atlanta but he is becoming more and more a shill for himself.

Put me down for Wednesday, 3:36 EST.

35 posted on 02/26/2006 6:06:04 AM PST by catpuppy
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To: JackQuickFrost
That's leadership???

Doh!

36 posted on 02/26/2006 6:09:12 AM PST by don-o (Don't be a Freeploader. Do the right thing. Become a Monthly Donor!)
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To: JackQuickFrost

Well, what do you know? Frist waffled? I'm shocked.

Nothing to see here, move along.


37 posted on 02/26/2006 6:10:53 AM PST by NCSteve
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To: don-o

Well Jimmy Got to give away the Panama canal, now George throws them the ports, and the next time lets hope its California.


38 posted on 02/26/2006 6:12:34 AM PST by ARCADIA (Abuse of power comes as no surprise)
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To: JackQuickFrost

Frist just plain sucks.


39 posted on 02/26/2006 6:13:55 AM PST by SIDENET ("IT'S A COOKBOOK!!!")
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To: Dane

>>>Even something like 61% of the American people don't know that foreign firms already operate container terminals.<<<

How many muslim firms operate American ports?


40 posted on 02/26/2006 6:14:37 AM PST by PhilipFreneau ("The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. " - Psalms 14:1, 53:1)
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To: JackQuickFrost

I've seen worms with stronger spines than this guy.


41 posted on 02/26/2006 6:15:03 AM PST by veronica ("A person needs a sense of mission like the air he breathes...")
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To: Dr. Ed Bravo

Hannity and Levin may have gone too far to back pedal now...


42 posted on 02/26/2006 6:15:39 AM PST by harpu ( "...it's better to be hated for who you are than loved for someone you're not!")
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To: JackQuickFrost
Frist Changes Position, Says He Now Supports Port Security Plan

Of course he has. It was stupid of him to jump on the band wagon without first discovering where it was going. Or for those in Rio Linda he had a 'knee jerk' reaction that he now regrets.

43 posted on 02/26/2006 6:16:29 AM PST by Dustbunny (The Islam of the terrorists is not a religion it is a CULT whose leader is Satan.)
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To: All
"he is now comfortable with an Arab-owned company running port security for six American cities"
Hold up! This can't be a direct quote! Frist has got to know this has nothing to do with port security being run by a Arab CO.! Also that statement in the article is not in ",s. This article is BIASED!
44 posted on 02/26/2006 6:22:19 AM PST by madconserv (Proud to be FReepin--Support Our Troops)
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To: harpu
Esau's blood kin DO mean us harm. "If in doubt don't" as Grandma used to say. Being PC and a globalist at any price will be our undoing. This will turn out bad IMO in the end. It's not worth the risk no matter who it offends.
45 posted on 02/26/2006 6:24:36 AM PST by carolina_rn7
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To: JackQuickFrost

The Kentucky Democratic Party, in a pre-emptive strike, issued a statement Friday saying Frist had "failed the American people" by allowing "tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and outsourcing of American jobs overseas."

"tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and outsourcing of American jobs overseas."
"tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and outsourcing of American jobs overseas."
"tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and outsourcing of American jobs overseas."
"tax cuts for the wealthy, record deficits and outsourcing of American jobs overseas."



Democrats still follow the repeat a lie playbook whereas
most of America only hears a skipping record.


46 posted on 02/26/2006 6:28:26 AM PST by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: tet68

What's the definition of a turncoat?


47 posted on 02/26/2006 6:34:14 AM PST by desertlily
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To: madconserv
Hold up! This can't be a direct quote! Frist has got to know this has nothing to do with port security being run by a Arab CO.!

The company's statement also refers to a delay before "taking over the ports." But, hey who are you going to believe? Your own eyes, or Bush and the Bushbots. Six ports became 21, its a meaningless deal that nobody knew about; not even homeland defense who didn't know but were opposed. It is the only thing in the last 5 years that has sent the President scrambling for his Veto pen - although, he only knew what he read in the papers. Where there is smoke there is fire and where there is stench there is rot.
48 posted on 02/26/2006 6:35:32 AM PST by ARCADIA (Abuse of power comes as no surprise)
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To: LibertarianInExile

He's back and forth on so many issues he makes Kerry look like a bastion of stability.


49 posted on 02/26/2006 6:37:51 AM PST by linda_22003
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To: All
I will not ever support the ports deal. I saw a spokesperson for UAE pushing the ports deal and the excuse given as to why I should support it was ...MONEY.
Quote from the UAE spokesperson, "We give large amounts of money to US. This deal is only about economics."

Dang mohammad, I don't want your d@Mn money. I don't care about economics, anymore. 3000 of my fellow Americans died because of the efforts of two of your citizens, and the others who your citizens were with on 911. But I should only be concerned about the economics, mohammad? I wanted to jump through the television and wrap my hands around this moron's neck. I don't want these people in my country for they will kill again. It is only a matter of when. Economics? BS!!! I realize the arguments on both sides and I've decided the only good mohammad is a dead mohammad. "Take a flying leap mohammad, preferably off a thousand foot cliff" I don't want your Fr###ing Money!!! and I'm disappointed in my fellow Americans who do want anything from you, mohammad.
50 posted on 02/26/2006 6:41:26 AM PST by no-to-illegals
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