Senators, by vote of 79 to 19, pass a resolution marking next year as "a period of significant transition to full Iraqi sovereignty. . . thereby creating the conditions for the phased redeployment of United States forces from Iraq." Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.): "Staying the course will not do." Sen. Bill Frist (R-Tenn.): "It's a continuation of the oversight we've been conducting for years in the United States Senate." WP, NYT, WSJ, USAT]

Senators from both parties "are demanding that the administration show that it has a strategy to turn the conflict over to the Iraqis and eventually bring U.S. troops home." [WP]

Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) defends critics of the war: "[T]he Bush administration must understand that each American has a right to question our policies in Iraq and should not be demonized for disagreeing with them. . . to not question your government is unpatriotic." [WP]

Oil executives did meet with Cheney's energy task force in 2001. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.): "The White House went to great lengths to keep these meetings secret, and now oil executives may be lying to Congress about their role in the Cheney task force." [WP]

Alito tries to downplay conservative remarks from 1985. [WP, NYT, LAT]

Rice reaches deal on access to the Gaza Strip. [WP, NYT, NYT, USAT]

Lewis Libby plans to "seek testimony from journalists beyond those cited in the indictment and will probably challenge government agreements limiting their grand jury testimony." [NYT]

Bush tells Chinese leaders, "once the door to freedom is opened even a crack, it cannot be closed." [WP, NYT, WSJ, USAT]

Alito's decisions are "more subtle and less dismissive of precedent." [WSJ]

American views on Iraq echo views on Vietnam. [USAT]

Senate Finance Committee lets go of cuts to dividend and capital gains rates; another setback for Bush. [WP, WSJ]

Ben Bernanke pledges to be "strictly independent of all political influences." [WP]

David Safavian was up-and-coming until he was indicted. [WP]


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