Somewhere, over the rainbow, a blog is born. A blog for Kansas. A blog for America. A blog by a reporter with a difficult-to-pronounce last name. But most importantly, a blog that is AMERICA'S ONLY PLACE dedicated to the vital intersection of politics and Sunflowers. The Heartland gods nod in wise approval.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Wakeful or not

Ever have those days where you're, like, up until 2 a.m. for no good reason? You're just kind of tossing around, puttering a bit, looking at unfinished housework and thinking, I could do that, but maybe I'll fall asleep in five minutes? Then you don't, and then you are, and then it's 7 a.m. and you really must be starting the day.

So it was.

Maybe I was subconsciously disappointed because the plea hearing of Mike Sears was postponed. Sears is a pivotal figure of the 767 tanker scandal, which I've been covering for three years. Today he was supposed to enter a guilty plea in Alexandria, Va., but the hearing was postponed for not-publicly disclosed reasons. No reset date. Last week's Darleen Druyun hearing got postponed too, which means I hardly ever write about the 767 tanker anymore. And that seems wrong.

Porter Goss is the controversial figure du jour, and Pat Roberts is giving support despite earlier skepticism of Goss's prospects. Democrats are in a bind on this one -- Goss isn't particularly popular with them, accused of foot-dragging in investigating the Bush administration's case for war in Iraq. But they don't want to be seen as holding up a CIA nomination in an election year fraught with terror threats. A similar thing happened with the GOP plan to create the Homeland Security Dept. in the fall of 2002, when Democratic opposition might have cost then-Sen. Max Cleland his seat.

But during all the hoopla it's important to remember one thing about Washington right now: It's August. Congress isn't in session, the city feels like a swamp (which, in origins and often in character, it is), and the thousands of journalists disgruntled that they're not on vacation need something to swarm around to justify their jobs to the folks back home. Fortunately, I love my job and all it entails, and nothing makes me more excited than a chance to get up in the morning and provide more service to Knight Ridder Newspapers and its audience of millions. Even when I was up 'til 2 for no good reason at all.