This week in Cincinnati, Romney went after Santorum. "I don't believe it's appropriate of us to keep raising the debt ceiling every year. He voted 5 times to raise the debt ceiling. Without getting compensating cuts in spending," he said, even though the notion of offsetting a debt ceiling increase with spending cuts is a very modern invention.
But Romney didn't stop there. "During his time in Senate - only 2 terms - the size of government grew 80 percent. When Republicans go to Washington and spend like Democrats, you're going to have a lot of spending," he said.
Last week Romney used another number to paint Santorum as a big spender.
"I hope people take a very close look at his record. Because he was in Congress for about 20 years and during that time the size of the federal government doubled during his time in office," he said in Boise, Idaho.Continue »
House Republicans scrambled Friday to finish work on a bill that will keep the government open beyond March 4th, while also making steep cuts in government spending. The House Appropriations Committee plans to release the bill later today after agreeing yesterday to increase spending cuts by around $25 billion in order to satisfy new freshmen who feel they were elected with a mandate to trim the fat from government.
Republicans expect to take up the bill, known as a Continuing Resolution, on Tuesday of next week. The debate will last at least three days. The bill will include $60 billion in cuts based on current spending or $100 billion based on President's FY 2011 budget request.
The debate will be long because House Republicans will allow nearly unlimited amendments. Members will have to file and print amendments early in the week to be considered, however, and if an amendment seeks to restore a spending cut, it will likely be required that spending be cut elsewhere.Continue »
Secretary of Defense Robert Gates quotes him to world leaders.
Special Ops troops read his book before deploying to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq.
Pakistani schoolgirls like Shakila Khan and Aziza Hussain could call him "hero."
Greg Mortenson's been building schools for girls in Pakistan - now thriving, successful women - like Khan and Hussain for over 17 years.
Mortenson founded the Central Asia Institute (CAI) in 1996 after living in Pakistan for three years and seeing the devastating difficulties facing girls who never had a chance at educations.
Since then, 145 schools have been built and over 64,000 students - 52,000 of them girls -- have moved their educations from haphazard lessons in outdoor classrooms with dirt and stick chalkboards into real schools with qualified teachers.
An April 17, 2011 "60 Minutes" report quotes multiple sources saying that some of the most inspiring and dramatic stories in Greg Mortenson's best-selling books are not true, and that Mortenson's charity, the Central Asia Institute, has spent more money in the U.S. talking about education in Pakistan and Afghanistan than actually building and supporting schools there, according to an analysis of the organization's last financial report.
Schools are built and students go to school despite the remote and turbulent surroundings. For CAI students, snow and sleet won't often deter them, but heat, gloom of night, rugged mountains, roadside bombs, occupying troops and insurgents might. Nonetheless, CAI builds the schools and students get to them.
Mortenson champions the idea that projects anywhere are only successful when the ideas are initiated, implemented, and managed by locals.
And the only way to discover locals' ideas, encourage their implementation, and help them to manage a project? Sit down, have a cup of tea (or three), and listen.
That's how CAI's schools come about, and that's the message troops are supposed to take away from reading Mortenson's first book Three Cups of Tea.Continue »
This post was written by Alicia Budich
The nightly news is filled with images of oily, desperate looking birds that seem more like sea monsters than the stately birds they were before the oil started gushing.
The news is also filled with dramatic images of rescuers saving birds with nets. Those birds are then transported to a number of rescue facilities up and down the Gulf Coast.
Literally hundreds of wildlife specialists and volunteers help the birds in an assembly-line fashion.
On Friday's "Washington Unplugged," Alicia Budich went to the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. to talk to Dan Boritt, the acting curator of birds, who has been involved in smaller rescue operations since 2002. From the calm of the National Zoo he was able to show how the harried rescuers clean the suffering birds' feathers.
Boritt spent time on Capitol Hill this week meeting with fellow members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to plan how zoos across the country can help the Gulf Coast. Right now, the animal rescue duties are being handled by residents of the Gulf, but with a spill this large it's likely the region will need backup. If that call for backup comes, people like Boritt and his staff will be ready to help.
Boritt also took Budich into the Roseate Spoonbill's cage. The Roseate is a pink bird with a distinctive, spoon-shaped beak whose natural habitat is the Gulf Coast. Boritt said that even a "bird guy" like himself has trouble identifying the birds in the footage of oil-soaked creatures, but it's likely some of the brown birds on TV are indeed pink.Continue »