Robert Novak

  The cloture vote on the bill later this month is expected to be close. The ad, distributed through conservative blogs, quotes my column of last Sept. 4 as saying, "McCain told me he will vote for cloture." However, the senator is opposed to total repeal of the tax.

 "American family businesses and farmers are counting on John McCain," says the ad. "Counting on him to cast a vote that could save the jobs they create and the legacy they leave for their children." It concludes, "Ask John McCain to keep his promise and end the death tax forever."


 Presidential adviser Karl Rove and his enemy, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, along with his wife, Valerie Plame, were seated at adjacent tables in the huge ballroom of the Washington Hilton Hotel for the White House Correspondents Association dinner on April 29.

 Wilson on Aug. 21, 2003, talked about having Rove "frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs" in connection with disclosure of his wife's identity as a CIA employee. Wilson later said, "I don't know if he (Rove) leaked it." With 2,700 in the ballroom, Wilson and Plame (guests of ABC) and Rove (NBC's guest) were seated a few feet from each other.

  A footnote: Billionaire financier George Soros, who spent $20 million against George W. Bush's re-election, was at the correspondents' dinner, but as far from the head table and the president as possible. Soros was a guest of the Financial Times, whose table was at the outer reaches of the ballroom.

Robert Novak

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

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