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Keyword: petehoekstra

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  • Former Intelligence Chairman Warns ‘Stealth Jihad’ Is Moving Through The West

    01/17/2016 6:28:34 PM PST · by · 22 replies
    Daily Caller News Foundation ^ | 01/17/2016 | Ginni Thomas
    Iranians burn US flags outside the former US embassy in Tehran on November 4, 2013, during a demonstration to mark the 34th anniversary of the 1979 US embassy takeover. Thousands of Iranians shouted "Death to America" as they demonstrated 34 years after Islamist students stormed the embassy compound in Tehran, holding 52 American diplomats hostage for 444 days. AFP/Getty Images Former House Intelligence Chairman Pete Hoekstra is genuinely worried about the fundamental changes President Barack Obama has made to American foreign policy, according to this 28-minute exclusive video interview for The Daily Caller News Foundation. A Michigan congressman for...
  • Trump Leading by 27% in Union Stronghold as Teamsters Want Meeting and Unions Abandon Hillary

    10/03/2015 6:30:57 AM PDT · by GonzoII · 56 replies
    Conservative Intel ^ | Oct 1, 2015
    Reports say that the influential Teamsters union may snub Hillary Clinton in favor of endorsing a Republican candidate such as Donald Trump for the White House in 2016.Such a move would likely be a notable boost for Republicans with Independents and “Reagan Democrats,” a critical segment of swing-voters that candidates spend millions trying to woo. These “middle of the road” type voters are crucial to winning bellwether regions like Michigan’s Macomb County.Clinton also faces snubs from other powerful unions like the AFL-CIO and AFSCME, refusing to back Hillary as they try to push Vice President Joe Biden into the race.According...
  • Pete Hoekstra backs Brian Ellis over Rep. Justin Amash in primary race (Establishment loser)

    07/15/2014 11:57:41 AM PDT · by cotton1706 · 38 replies ^ | 7/14/14 | Andrew Krietz
    GRAND RAPIDS, MI Former U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra has said he'll back U.S. Rep. Justin Amash's opponent in the upcoming August primary. Hoekstra is endorsing local businessman Brian Ellis in the Third District race. Hoekstra, who served in the House from 1993-2011 and was chair of the House Intelligence Committee, in a statement said Ellis will be a "strong partner" with other Michigan Republicans to promote conservative ideas. "Bottom line, I strongly endorse Brian Ellis because he will be an effective conservative voice and a consistent conservative vote for solutions that will help hardworking Michigan taxpayers," Hokestra said. "Brian...
  • Ron and Rand Paul pressuring Justin Amash to forego Senate run, report says

    04/24/2013 6:08:46 PM PDT · by cripplecreek · 9 replies
    Mlive ^ | April 24, 2013 | Zane McMillin
    GRAND RAPIDS, MI U.S. Rep. Justin Amash, R-Cascade Township, is being pressured to stay out of the race for retiring Sen. Carl Levin's seat by libertarian power brokers Ron and Rand Paul. That's according to a National Journal article published Wednesday that examines the potential candidacies of Amash and fellow Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Howell. According to the article, rumors are flying that Amash branded in several national media articles as the "next Ron Paul" is being cautioned against a run by the elder Paul and Rand Paul, a Kentucky senator: But perhaps most illustrative of the tension...
  • Hoekstra: Obamas Afghan Drawdown Opens Door to Taliban, Al-Qaida

    01/12/2013 11:56:43 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 18 replies
    Newsmax ^ | Saturday, 12 Jan 2013 11:29 AM | Todd Beamon and Kathleen Walter
    President Barack Obamas decision on Friday to speed up the drawdown of U.S. troops in Afghanistan reopens the possibility of the Taliban to emerge as a major player, former Michigan Congressman Pete Hoekstra tells Newsmax. It is a signal to the Afghan peoplehe signaled to the Taliban, and he signaled to the American peoplethat the U.S. role, the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, is done, Hoekstra, the former GOP chairman of the powerful House Intelligence Committee, tells Newsmax TV in an exclusive interview. It may not be completed, but it is finished. The US will no longer be there primarily to...
  • Hoekstra says he'll catch Stabenow as voters focus

    09/27/2012 9:12:22 PM PDT · by Qbert · 12 replies
    AP via Times Union ^ | September 27, 2012 | JOHN FLESHER
    ELK RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) Republican U.S. Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra couldn't have asked for a friendlier audience than the workers of Traverse Bay Manufacturing Inc., who are fighting mad over what they consider unfair competition not from China or India, but from their own government. [Snip] "We're the underdog, we're behind," Hoekstra said in an interview after his factory visit in the Lake Michigan town of Elk Rapids. "It's been a very sleepy race ... pretty much been frozen in place for the last eight, nine weeks. But we think that as people start to focus and as...
  • Rick Santorum stumps for Pete Hoekstra in his Senate bid

    09/23/2012 8:18:53 AM PDT · by Qbert · 15 replies
    The Holland Sentinel ^ | Sep 18, 2012 | ANDREA GOODELL
    Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, in Holland campaigning for Pete Hoekstras Senate bid Tuesday afternoon, said Michigan is key for Mitt Romney's chances. [Snip] Santorum called Michigan a potential decider. If Mitt Romney wins Michigan, hes going to be president of the United States, Santorum said. The two talked about national security, the Senate race and Hoekstras opponent, Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Debbie Stabenows taking up space, Santorum said, later pointing to the lack of a budget proposal from the Senate Finance Committee, on which she sits. [Snip] Top of the list was national security. The U.S. has fewer allies...
  • Herman Cain to join Pete Hoekstra on U.S. Senate campaign trail

    02/16/2012 6:46:00 PM PST · by Clintonfatigued · 11 replies
    Michigan Live ^ | February 16, 2012 | Nate Reens
    Former U.S. Rep Pete Hoekstra will trot out Herman Cain, who bowed out of a bid for the Republican presidential nomination, around Michigan next week to drum up support, his campaign said today. Cain will appear in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Ypsilanti and Troy on a blitz across the state as they tout the Holland Republicans Tea Party ties and taking incumbent Democrat Debbie Stabenow to task for her spending policies. Cain suspended his quest for the presidency in December amid rumors of marital infidelity. The Tea Party conservatives have been increasingly supporting Pete Hoekstra over the years as a result...
  • Not just M.I.A.: Super Bowl political ad using Asian woman decried (Pete Hoekstra)

    02/06/2012 1:47:01 PM PST · by Responsibility2nd · 34 replies
    LA Times ^ | 02/06/2012
    It wasnt just rapper M.I.A. who got into hot water for her actions during the Super Bowl. Republican senatorial candidate Pete Hoekstra stirred the pot with a political ad that featured an Asian woman speaking broken English, sparking immediate protests from Democrats and civil rights groups. During the halftime show, M.I.A. made an obscene gesture, extending her middle finger. Both the NFL and NBC, which broadcast the show, have apologized for the offense. Hoekstra's campaign ad was broadcast only in Michigan, where the former congressman and unsuccessful gubernatorial candidate is seeking the GOP nomination to run against Sen. Debbie Stabenow,...
  • Bad news for Gary Glenn: Pete Hoekstra could challenge Debbie Stabenow after all

    07/19/2011 5:07:13 PM PDT · by cripplecreek · 45 replies ^ | July 19th 2011 | Susan J. Demas
    Former U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra apparently has had a change of heart and is once again thinking about challenging U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Lansing).
  • The Headlines of 2011 (Pete Hoekstra)

    01/28/2011 1:32:01 PM PST · by nuconvert · 1 replies
    National Review ^ | January 25, 2011 | Pete Hoekstra
    Iran Conducts Nuclear Test. Could we see such a headline in 2011? Yes, and Americas leaders must prepare for this and similar possibilities, however unlikely they now seem. Too often, our leaders are caught by surprise because they refused to consider the unthinkable. This has led to some spectacular intelligence and policy failures. For example, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Washington cut its intelligence budget dramatically. Many Americans believed what Francis Fukuyama argued in The End of History and the Last Man: that the triumph of democracy and human rights was inevitable. Our leaders ignored the possibility that...
  • Michigan GOP Numbers

    12/10/2010 2:01:56 PM PST · by speciallybland · 40 replies
    Public Policy Polling ^ | 12/10/2010 | Tom Jensen
    John Engler, largely based on superior name recognition, is the top choice of Michigan Republicans to take on Debbie Stabenow in 2012. Among the more likely roster of potential GOP contenders Pete Hoekstra is the leader by a good margin with only Mike Cox also hitting double digits. 31% of Republican voters say Engler would be their first choice, followed by 24% for Hoekstra, and 12% for Cox. Rounding out the Republicans polled is Terri Lynn Land at 7%, Candice Miller at 5%, Mike Rogers at 4%, Thad McCotter at 3%, and Tim Leuliette at 0%. If Leuliette, who has...
  • Romney endorses Hoekstra in Michigan GOP governor primary

    04/22/2010 12:22:29 PM PDT · by Darren McCarty · 17 replies · 428+ views
    The Hill ^ | 4-22-10 | Aaron Blake
    Mitt Romney is wading into the GOP governor's primary in Michigan, and he's backing Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.). Hoekstra faces state Attorney General Mike Cox and businessman Rick Snyder in a pitched primary battle. Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D) is term-limited, and Democrats are waging their own primary battle.
  • Another Reason To Keep Gitmo Open

    12/29/2009 4:44:43 PM PST · by Kaslin · 13 replies · 684+ views ^ | December 2009 | INVESTORS BUSINESS DAILY Staff
    Security: Two of the four leaders allegedly behind the attempted destruction of Flight 253 were released from Guantanamo two years ago. The case for indefinite detention has been made once again, and not in Illinois. Sometimes America's chickens do come home to roost. In a statement released Monday, al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, which counts among its leadership two former Guantanamo detainees, claimed responsibility for the attempted destruction of Northwest Airlines Flight 253. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the crotch bomber, told FBI agents he was trained for his Christmas Day mission in Yemen by top leaders of the group who provided...
  • Rick Snyder Criticizes Opponent PeteHoekstra for Citing Attempted Terror Attack In Fundraiser Letter

    12/29/2009 4:54:18 PM PST · by fight_truth_decay · 31 replies · 869+ views ^ | December 29, 2009, 7:02AM | Brian McVicar The Grand Rapids Press
    Candidate Rick Snyder criticizes opponent for governor Pete Hoekstra for citing attempted Detroit terrorist attack in fundraising letterU.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra was blasted Monday for using an attempted terrorism attack to raise money for his campaign for governor. A fundraising solicitation Hoekstra's campaign e-mailed Monday criticized the response by President Barack Obama administration's to a failed attempt to blow up Northwest Airlines Flight 253 as it neared landing at Detroit Metropolitan Airport. The solicitation showed poor judgment, according to a campaign spokesman for Rick Snyder, an Ann Arbor venture capitalist and 2010 Republican gubernatorial candidate. Grand Rapids Press File PhotoRick...
  • Pete Hoekstra Asks If There's A Breakdown In Our Intelligence in Not Recognizing Red Flags (Video)

    12/26/2009 10:51:51 PM PST · by Talkradio03 · 2 replies · 390+ views
    hotairpundit ^ | 12/26/09 | HAP
    Pete Hoekstra on Foxnews hits back at the intelligence community for not connecting the dots and not see red flags,...Good for him, keep speaking up Pete...(Video)
  • Pete Hoekstra:Detroit terror suspect Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab may be connected to Ft Hood shooter

    12/26/2009 10:54:10 AM PST · by Velveeta · 54 replies · 3,326+ views
    mlive ^ | 12/26/2009 | Aaron Foley
    (snipped) Hoekstra says that Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab may have a common link with the Fort Hood shooter that shot 13 people in November. AFP, Dec. 26: There was a suggestion of links between Abdulmutallab and radical US-born Yemeni cleric Anwar al-Aulaqi, who had contacts with the US army psychiatrist accused of gunning down 13 people at a Texas military base last month. "He may have been in contact with the American imam al-Aulaqi," Peter Hoekstra, the most senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee and a member of Congress for Michigan, told AFP.
  • Dems, GOP split on NY trials of alleged terrorists

    11/15/2009 4:03:59 PM PST · by reaganaut1 · 30 replies · 1,322+ views
    Associated Press ^ | November 15, 2009 | Jim Abrams
    Bringing those accused in the Sept. 11 attacks to New York for trial would increase the security threat to the city and give radical Islamists a platform to propagate their ideology, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani said Sunday. Giuliani's view that the Obama administration is erring in trying Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four others near the site of the World Trade Center was echoed by other Republicans on the Sunday news programs. Democrats defended the decision of Attorney General Eric Holder to try the five in New York where more than 2,000 civilians were killed on Sept. 11. If...
  • Hoekstra cautious about reports al-Qaida has regained its strength

    07/13/2007 7:47:48 AM PDT · by Valin · 12 replies · 432+ views
    Ludington Daily News. ^ | 7/13/07 | STEVE BEGNOCHE
    U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra this morning said he takes all reports about al-Qaida and radical Islamists with a little bit of skepticism. Its always imprecise, the Holland Republican said of the intelligence that is sifted and analyzed to come up with reports such as the one The Associated Press is reporting today. It concludes that al-Qaida has rebuilt its operating capability to a level not seen since before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The bottom line, Hoekstra said, is you can get patterns. In 2001, al-Qaida had a safe-haven in Afghanistan and could train and had an offensive capability....
  • Ex-agent says U.S. ignored WMD sites (politics, fear got in way)

    08/05/2006 9:18:13 AM PDT · by wagglebee · 24 replies · 1,492+ views
    WorldNetDaily ^ | 8/5/06 | WorldNetDaily
    Dave Gaubatz A former U.S. federal agent and counter-terrorism specialist deployed to Iraq before the war says he waged a three-year, unsuccessful battle to get officials to search four sites where he believes the former Saddam regime buried weapons of mass destruction. Dave Gaubatz, an Arabic linguist who now serves as chief investigator with the Dallas County Medical Examiner, told his story to Ryan Mauro of Gaubatz said the suspected sites have never been searched by the Iraq Survey Group, the fact-finding mission dispatched by the U.S.-led multinational force. Two sites are within the city limits of Nasariyah,...
  • Weekend Talk Show *Preview* for 7/8 and 7/9/2006 (not the live thread)

    07/07/2006 7:36:53 PM PDT · by Phsstpok · 27 replies · 920+ views
    Network and Cable News Networks | 7/7/06 | Network and Cable News
    Weekend Talk Show *Preview* for 7/8 and 7/9/06 (not the live thread)The main message is the Sunday Shows and message 1 will be the Saturday Shows, then I'll post the ping list. I've changed the format as a test this week and put the links to articles and background on the guests in with their listing in the shows. It struck me that it might have been getting less helpful to have to jump back and forth. Let me know which format works better.ABC This Week (George Stephanopoulos) Meme: Bush is all wrong about (Korea/Iraq/Immigration) and even Republicans think soNo...
  • Rep. Pete Hoekstra: Journalism vs. Security (USA Today Put Americans at Risk)

    05/13/2006 1:17:32 PM PDT · by RWR8189 · 5 replies · 665+ views
    Los Angeles Times ^ | May 13, 2006 | Representative Pete Hoekstra
    WE ARE IN the first war of the Information Age, and we have a critical advantage over our enemy: We are far better at gathering intelligence. It's an advantage we must utilize, and it's keeping us safe. But every time classified national security information is leaked, our ability to gather information on those who would do us harm is eroded. We suffered a setback Thursday when USA Today ran a front-page story alleging that the National Security Agency was collecting domestic phone records. This article hurt our efforts to protect Americans by giving the enemy valuable insights into the Terrorist...
  • Weekend Show *Preview* for 5/6 - 5/7 (not the live thread)

    05/05/2006 7:41:09 PM PDT · by Phsstpok · 29 replies · 954+ views
    Network and Cable News Networks | 5/5/06 | Network and Cable News
    The main message is the Sunday Shows. Message 1 will be the Saturday Shows and message 2 will be the show guest links post. Then I'll post the ping list.ABC This Week (George Stephanopoulos) Meme: The battle is joined! Place your bets! How badly will the GOP lose? Topics: Power Politics: Two Sunday exclusives as former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, and DNC Chairman Howard Dean join me to discuss gas prices, the 2006 elections and the war in Iraq. Will record low approval ratings for President Bush and rising gas prices fuel a Democratic takeover of Congress in...
  • New Iraqi Documents show Bush didn't Lie (Yellow Cake in Africa

    03/13/2006 9:11:59 AM PST · by jbwbubba · 68 replies · 2,794+ views
    New Iraqi Documents Show Bush Didn't 'Lie' Newly translated Iraqi documents from Saddam Hussein's regime show that President Bush was factually accurate when he told the nation in his 2003 State of the Union Address that Iraq had recently sought uranium from Africa. Bush's 16-word statement had formed the basis for the claim adopted by administration critics that "Bush lied" about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs. But according to the Washington Times today, an unnamed U.S. official reports that "newly translated Iraqi documents . . . tell of Saddam seeking uranium from Africa in the mid-1990s." The documents also...
  • Hoekstra: Leak Means NSA Program No Longer Effective [Demoncrats & Liberal MSM Are Treasonous]

    02/13/2006 6:04:37 AM PST · by conservativecorner · 36 replies · 1,854+ views
    Fox News ^ | Feb. 12, 2006 | Not Cited
    WASHINGTON The House Intelligence Committee chairman on Sunday questioned the value of President Bush's NSA eavesdropping program, saying Al Qaeda undoubtedly has changed its means of communication to avoid Washington's monitoring. Bush said two weeks ago in his State of the Union address that the program of monitoring calls and e-mail between the United States and suspected terrorist associates overseas "remains essential to the security of America." But Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., suggested that the public disclosure of the program's existence in December in the New York Times has undermined its effectiveness. "Does anyone really believe that, after 50...
  • The Butcher with the Terror Ties - The evidence mounts. (Newsweek reports on Atta in Prague, 2001)

    01/13/2006 9:11:24 AM PST · by neverdem · 83 replies · 7,860+ views
    NRO ^ | January 13, 2006 | Deroy Murdock
    E-mail Author Author Archive Send to a Friend Version January 13, 2006, 8:11 a.m. The Butcher with the Terror Ties The evidence mounts. Drip, drip, drip. Drop by drop, isolated news stories and emerging documents are eroding the popular myth that Saddam Hussein had no connections to Islamofascist terrorists. These revelations undermine war critics efforts to whitewash Baghdads ancien regime such as when Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid declared: There was [sic] no terrorists in Iraq. Likewise, Sen. Carl Levin (D., Mich.) describes a nonexistent relationship between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. Reid, Levin, and others who dismiss...

    08/11/2005 6:30:09 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 47 replies · 4,293+ views
    August 11, 2005 | Bronc1
  • How Chinagate Led to 9/11

    08/11/2005 6:14:05 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 30 replies · 5,053+ views
    Front Page magazine ^ | May 25, 2004 | Jean Pearce
    "...In April, staff writer Scott Wheeler reported that a senior U.S. government official and three other sources claimed that the 1995 memo written by Jamie Gorelick, who served as the Clinton Justice Departments deputy attorney general from 1994 to 1997, created "a roadblock" to the investigation of illegal Chinese donations to the Democratic National Committee. But the picture is much bigger than that. The Gorelick memo, which blocked intelligence agents from sharing information that could have halted the September 11 hijacking plot, was only the mortar in a much larger maze of bureaucratic walls whose creation Gorelick personally oversaw..."
  • 9/11 Commission Transcript: U. S. Attorney General John Ashcroft - Wednesday, April 14, 2004

    08/11/2005 2:32:50 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 32 replies · 3,429+ views
    Pittsburg Post-Gazette ^ | April 14, 2004 | Bronc1
    "...So it's my clear belief that the wall itself developed this culture which restrained in a substantial way the exchange of information in the intelligence and law enforcement communities. The Bellows report, which was part of some recommendations following the Wen Ho Lee case, indicated that it was part of the culture at the FBI that if one made a mistake and shared information that was later deemed to be inappropriate, it was called a career- ender, so that the risk of a person sharing information improperly was at least known in the culture of the law enforcement community to...
  • Who's Who on the 9/11 "Independent" Commission?

    08/11/2005 2:17:27 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 14 replies · 2,158+ views
    Independent Media TV ^ | July 21, 2003 | Michael Chossudovsky
    According to The New York Times (8 July 2003): "the federal commission investigating the Sept. 11 terror attacks said today that its work was being hampered by the failure of executive branch agencies, especially the Pentagon and the Justice Department, to respond quickly to requests for documents and testimony." Several alternative media have joined the bandwagon. George W. Bush is accused of obstructing the investigation...Former Jersey governor Thomas Kean, the commission's chairman is presented as an honest and uncompromising individual, who is courageously confronting the US government: "Without greater cooperation, Kean said, ''we cannot do the job we are supposed...
  • OH REALLY, MR. KOJM?...Q & A with Christopher Kojm, Deputy Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission

    08/11/2005 2:00:11 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 1 replies · 1,078+ views
    "...It was a deeply rewarding experience to work with highly capable colleagues and for such distinguished and thoughtful commissioners. Our commission sessions had long and occasionally heated discussion, but it was always productive and the commissioners themselves were devoted to achieving bipartisanship and unanimity. They understood very well that their impact would be greatest if they were unanimous..."
  • What are the backgrounds of the key players on the 9/11 Commission? Here's the answer...

    08/11/2005 11:39:12 AM PDT · by Bronc1 · 4 replies · 1,511+ views
    The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (also known as the 9-11 Commission), an independent, bipartisan commission created by congressional chartered to prepare a full and complete account of the circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, including preparedness for and the immediate response to the attacks...
  • Four in 9/11 Plot Are Called Tied to Qaeda in '00

    08/09/2005 10:12:39 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 25 replies · 2,637+ views
    New York Times ^ | August 9, 2005 | Douglas Jehl
    ...The former intelligence official said the first Able Danger report identified all four men as members of a "Brooklyn" cell, and was produced within two months after Mr. Atta arrived in the United States. The former intelligence official said he was among a group that briefed Mr. Zelikow and at least three other members of the Sept. 11 commission staff about Able Danger when they visited the Afghanistan-Pakistan region in October 2003...
  • Did DoD lawyers blow the chance to nab Atta?

    08/09/2005 9:10:55 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 13 replies · 2,021+ views
    Government Security News ^ | Unknown | Bronc1
    In September 2000, one year before the Al Qaeda attacks of 9/11, a U.S. Army military intelligence program, known as Able Danger, identified a terrorist cell based in Brooklyn, NY, one of whose members was 9/11 ringleader Mohammed Atta, and recommended to their military superiors that the FBI be called in to take out that cell, according to Rep. Curt Weldon, a longtime Republican congressman from Pennsylvania who is currently vice chairman of both the House Homeland Security and House Armed Services Committees...
  • Fitting the Pieces Together--Able Danger, Jamie Gorelick & 9/11

    08/09/2005 8:43:08 PM PDT · by Bronc1 · 67 replies · 10,499+ views
    The Strata-Sphere ^ | August 9, 2005 | Bronc1
    ...We do know that Able Danger made their report about four of the attackers in 2000. We do know the report was submitted and the request for action was denied. We do know the Gorelick policy wall was in effect at the time. We do know Clinton was President and Dick Clark was terrorism guru. We do know 9-11 commission staffers were briefed on these events and 9-11 commissioners were not...
  • Deal on drug benefits for seniors no sure thing

    07/21/2003 8:17:57 AM PDT · by FourPeas · 8 replies · 222+ views
    Grand Rapids Press Bureau ^ | , July 21, 2003 | Sarah Kellogg
    Deal on drug benefits for seniors no sure thing Monday, July 21, 2003By Sarah Kellogg Grand Rapids Press Bureau WASHINGTON -- Establishing a Medicare prescription drug benefit for senior citizens this year may prove more difficult for Congress than many thought. After clearing one hurdle -- approving a plan in both chambers on June 27 -- GOP and Democratic leaders immediately hit another. They have spent the weeks since passage fending off increasingly stinging criticism of the House and Senate bills from interest groups, fellow lawmakers and seniors. "It's a very difficult situation," said U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, a Democrat....