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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Hey Max, Do You Believe In Coincidence?

In March 2008, Max Baucus (D-MT) had separated from his wife. That same month, Andrew Ramanos was in his final undergraduate semester at George Washington University, where he worked on the school newspaper, the GW Hatchet.

In the summer of 2008, Baucus started dating a former staffer, Melodee Hanes. Sometime very early in 2009, Hanes was one of three names submitted by Baucus as possible U.S. Attorney nominees. In March 2009, Hanes withdrew her name from consideration.

As of the day before yesterday, Ramanos does not appear to have broken any major story or received any considerable attention in his short journalistic career.

For the past two weeks Baucus has been causing problems for Democrats by threatening, among other things, to join in a Republican filibuster if certain important changes were not made to Harry Reid's health care restructuring bill particularly on the abortion issue because he does not support the type of "robust" public option and other items important to Democrats and is more conservative on the abortion issue. Baucus is one of a small number of Democrats who might join a Republican filibuster on these issues.*

Yesterday, Ramonos, writing for a blog called Main Justice, broke the story of Baucus' relationship with Hanes.

The revelation is an embarrassment for Baucus at this critical time in the health care debate, even though Baucus defends his conduct:

The disclosure comes at a critical time for Baucus, who is leading Senate negotiations over the sprawling health care bill. It remains to be seen whether the disclosure will become an unwanted distraction as the bill moves into a pivotal phase in the coming days.

And despite Baucus’ office contention that nothing was improper about his recommendation, it will almost certainly spark calls for Ethics Committee inquiries given the appearance that Baucus was assisting his girlfriend secure a top spot as a prosecutor in the Obama administration.

Baucus opposes Democrats on health care. Cub reporter breaks the story embarrassing Baucus. Someone connected to the White House or Democratic leadership drop a dime? Or mere coincidence?

Hey Max, do you believe in coincidence?

[* I changed the language in this post because it does not appear that Baucus has threatened to filibuster, but he is one of those who are on the fence]
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  1. Small typo William. Max Baucus is from Montana not Nebreka.

  2. I can't believe I posted the following under Friday Night Prisoner Exchange when it was meant to be here:

    I can only repeat the silliness/seriousness of the Ramos revelation about Senator Max Baucus D-Mt by quoting myself in a recent blogpost. In another part of the forest I had read that the whole Climate change debacle had threatened the very validity of science and the scientific method. Senator Baucus has come out as being on the fence against change - the BIG change in health care in the Senate Bill (the public health care portion). So here is what I think about that bill Senator Baucus:

    Many think that science itself will be the victim (quite a change) of this climate change debacle. Nonsense. Overreaction. Call my press agent. I have that scientific je ne sais quoi that has made me prepared to go to the top of the US Capitol building and drop a ball and a copy of the Senate Health Reform Bill off the dome to see which lands first.

    Legions of thinking people - loyal citizens called Conservative stand with you in your questioning Senator Baucus. But I hope you will join me in dropping that damnable piece of looney legislation from the capital dome. As Churchill said: Never, never, never give up. We Conservatives never do. I fully understand your on-the-fence status. I myself am an independent with Conservative leanings that become straight up when it comes to the ruse of Health Care Reform 2009

  3. Unnnhhh....

    Well, yah, but now that it's out there, Baucus cannot be threatened any more, right?