Robert Novak


Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop, who represents the eastern tip of Long Island, N.Y., became a choice election target for Republican strategists March 11 when he presided over a gay marriage in East Hampton, N.Y.

The New York Sunday Times society page listing of weddings reported that Bishop "led the commitment ceremony" between Dr. Charles Guy Hitchcock and David Wilt. Hitchcock is dean of Southampton College on Long Island, where Bishop was provost before being elected to Congress in 2002.

Bishop's district is one of the nation's most volatile politically, switching back and forth between Republican and Democratic House members. Republican Felix Grucci lost the last election after running an ad alleging that Bishop was soft on rape.


Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, one of the Republican Party's rising conservative stars, is alienating allies nationwide with his support for his liberal Republican colleague from Pennsylvania, Sen. Arlen Specter.

Santorum's latest boost for Specter in the April 27 Pennsylvania primary is a television ad in which Santorum says: "Arlen is with us on votes that matter." That infuriated conservatives who note that Specter voted against the Supreme Court confirmation of Robert Bork and removal from office of Bill Clinton, and for shrinking the 2001 Bush tax cut. Of Sen. John Kerry's 26 key votes listed by the Republican National Committee, Specter voted with him 10 times.

Polls show the primary challenge to Specter by Rep. Pat Toomey getting closer. Toomey has backing from conservatives across the country, who are upset by Santorum's stand. Santorum is a strong contender to be the next Senate majority leader.

Robert Novak

Robert Novak (1931-2009) was a syndicated columnist and editor of the Evans-Novak Political Report.

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