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Doing the math, Rep. Virginia Foxx, North Carolina Republican, figures the Democrats' proposed economic stimulus package would spend $275,000 per job in creating or saving 3 million jobs.


Democratic Rep. Frank M. Kratovil is the freshman congressman from Maryland's 1st District, having defeated Republican Andy Harris, who ousted incumbent Republican Rep. Wayne T. Gilchrest in the primary.

Mr. Kratovil this week introduced himself as "a career prosecutor, someone whose job it has been to sort through facts in search of the truth. In my career, I have found that usually the truth lies somewhere in the middle."


As President Obama and the Democratic majority continue to furnish their respective houses, Republicans begin the difficult task of rebuilding their party from the ground up. First, they will need a construction foreman.

Endorsements continue daily for the six candidates vying to become chairman of the Republican National Committee, with the winner declared at the Republican Party's winter meeting later this month. The hopefuls include:

Chip Saltsman, former head of the Tennessee Republican Party (he landed in hot water recently after distributing a Christmas CD containing the parody song, "David Ehrenstein's Barack the Magic Negro").

Saul Anuzis, head of the Michigan Republican Party (a hockey dad and owner of a telecommunications company, he told Inside the Beltway his party requires a "tech savvy" leader of his caliber).

Kenneth Blackwell (the former Ohio secretary of state is backed by an influential slate of Republican heavy-hitters, including two-time presidential candidate Steve Forbes, former Attorney General Edwin Meese III, former Reagan adviser T. Kenneth Cribb Jr., Eagle Forum president Phyllis Schlafly, and American Conservative Union chairman David Keene).

Katon Dawson, chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party (well-known and well-respected, he is the fourth-longest serving state Republican Party chairman in the country and serves on the RNC's Budget Committee).

Former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael S. Steele (his supporters are throwing a reception in his honor Monday evening at the Rookery on Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest).

Incumbent RNC Chairman Mike Duncan (he says don't count him or the Republican Party out in the coming four years, citing increased grassroots support and fundraising totaling more than $320 million in the last election cycle).


Best-selling author and former Bush special assistant David Frum says Republicans can win the next election, but only if drastic "personally uncomfortable" changes are made.

Otherwise the party is "staring disaster in the face," warns the Toronto-born resident fellow of the American Enterprise Institute, who has just re-released last year's widely-acclaimed "Comeback" with a new chapter on lessons from the 2008 presidential campaign.

"I often joked during the writing of this book that it should be called, 'Will You Listen?' - with the idea that we would release a paperback edition after 2008 with the title, 'OK - So Will You Listen Now?' "

Mr. Frum says don't blame Sen. John McCain for the party's dismal showing in November. Nor is it about Iraq. One might instead consider that the current cohort of civic-minded 20-somethings "is the most one-sidedly partisan in the history of polling," and they reacted in force against the "frustrations and failures" of President Bush.

While the former president did accomplish "much more than he gets credit for," Mr. Frum writes that Mr. Bush "deserves much of the blame": appointing "consistently mediocre people" to important jobs, defying the nation and his own party by adopting immigration amnesty as a supreme priority, and spending "lavishly" without improving government.

As for the Republican Party, he says, its "policy ideas have barely changed at all from what they were in 1978. It's like the punch line of a joke I quote in 'Comeback': 'Son, your answers are so old that I've forgotten the questions.' "


"The simple fact that we have 58, 59 senators should not in any way give us any idea that we can move through here without bipartisan support."

- Word of caution this week to Democrats from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada

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