Daily Briefing: What 'Man-Handing' Means for America

Bad numbers for Bush and Republicans in new WP-ABC poll; public generally disagrees with proposed ban on filibusters, Social Security plan, Bush's handling of the economy and situation in Iraq. [WP]

Reid proposes concessions to avert ban on filibusters: "There is a way to avoid the nuclear shutdown, and I'm working with my colleagues to put that plan in place." [WP, NYT, LAT]

Senate Finance Committee to debate Social Security overhaul this week; private accounts not set in stone. Grassley: "I'd rather bring something up in the committee and fail than tell my grandchildren I wasn't concerned at all about their Social Security benefits." [WP, NYT]

Rove is "absolutely confident" Bolton will be confirmed; says DeLay will keep his job. [USAT]

Lawmakers scramble to check their travel records in wake of DeLay scandal. [WP, USAT]

Special interests and inertia prove more powerful than 9/11 Commission. [WSJ]

Bolton reportedly "sought to push his public assertions [on Syria] beyond the views endorsed by intelligence agencies." [NYT]

Bush, Prince Abdullah talk oil; Bush: "One thing is for certain: I need to sign an energy bill." James Zogby: "The fact that President Bush confidently took the crown prince's hand and held it all the way into the office said to Americans, 'This is my friend and I am going to walk with him.'" [WSJ, WP, NYT, WT, USAT, USAT]

Recently-approved federal appellate court judge says faithful are waging "war" on secular people who threaten America's religious foundation. Justice Janice Rogers Brown: "There seems to have been no time since the Civil War that this country was so bitterly divided. It's not a shooting war, but it is a war." [LAT]

Moderate Republicans expand distance from Bush. Wittmann: "Now that he's no longer going to be on the ballot, they are putting their own interest somewhat before the White House's." [LAT]

Republicans concerned Specter will vote with Democrats on filibuster ban. [WT]

Bush invites DeLay on AF1 trip back to Washington. [WT]

Trouble with Bolton illustrates "long-standing tensions among Republicans over the thrust of U.S. foreign policy." [WP, WT]

Conservatives angered Frist doesn't support DeLay's prescription for "retaliation" against judges. [WT]

Ambassador under Bush-41 says Bolton has "no diplomatic bone in his body" and is "unworthy." [LAT]


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