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Rep. Shadegg apparently the annointed one to replace Tom DeLay

Reported by Chrish - January 16, 2006

We got a heads-up on Fox News Sunday January 8th from White House insider, PNAC Chairman and Fox News regular Bill Kristol about who may be the replacement for Tom DeLay. One choice, AZ Rep. John Shadegg, seems to be receiving a boost from FOX.

Shadegg, who announced his interest in the position on Friday the 13th, has gone from unknown to major contender in three days. While the three contenders, MO Rep. Roy Blunt, OH Rep. John Boehner, and Shadegg all appeared on Fox News Sunday yesterday 1/15/06, Rep. Shadegg was invited to Fox News Live today for a three-and-a-half minute interview with Bill Hemmer.

While the three candidates pictures appeared in alphabetical order on the screen, Shadegg's name was mentioned first. Short clips from Sunday's program were shown, the emphasis being that Shadegg never took any money from Jack Abramoff, Blunt stating he got the Republican agenda through as he was interim HML, and Boehner saying he can help develop a common vision for Republicans.

Shadegg appeared via satellite for a three-plus-minutes one on one with Hemmer, who started by saying that Blunt claims to have the job locked up - does he? Shadegg replies that Blunt had the needed votes before he (Shadegg) entered the race but now that there's a third choice, people will be switching. Vote counts in these races are notoriously inaccurate (Like exit polls?) and nobody has it locked up.

During the interview, the banner beneath Shadegg read "The agenda for the new House leader", which gave the impression that Shadegg was the new House leader. (Comment: familiarizing him with the faithful). The banner changed to short biographical tidbits about Shadegg, including that he was first elected to Congress in 1994, (as part of the Gingrich revolution), and two charimanships: 2000-2002 Chair of Republican Study Committee, and currently Chairs the Republican Policy committee.

Comment: pretty thin experience to be Majority Leader, but I don't think that matters. This smacks of advocacy and promotion, not fair and balanced reporting. I'm pretty certain the other two candidates are fuming over the free publicity accorded Kristol's candidate.

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