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Security Politics

"While the deal" on detainee trials and treatment "is subject to further discussion with House Republican leaders, it resolved the most contentious issues in the Bush administration's high-profile drive to gain congressional backing for its detainee policies before Congress adjourns next week," says the Washington Post

The Los Angeles Times casts the deal as a concession by Bush to the Senate GOP dissidents. 

"At least one key Republican, House Armed Services Chairman Duncan Hunter of California, expressed reservations about the restrictions on secret evidence.  He said he fears the government won't be able to convict terrorism suspects without it," USA Today reports.  "Democrats appeared likely to back the compromise." 

"Most Democrats have taken their cues from McCain, a former prisoner of war who was tortured while in captivity in North Vietnam, and have been content to allow Republicans to fight with one another over the issue of detainee treatment," says the Boston Globe

The Wall Street Journal points out that the White House still faces a headache in their desired NSA warrantless surveillance legislation.  "And privately, Republicans admit that completing the second measure before lawmakers go home for the elections will be difficult." 

Venezuelan President Huge Chavez got some laughs and applause yesterday at a Harlem Baptist church when he "compared Bush to cowboy movie icon John Wayne."  Chavez also called Bush "'an alcoholic and a sick man.'"  And he "announced that Citgo, the U.S.-based refining arm of Venezuela's state-run oil company, plans to more than double the amount of heating oil it is making available under the program to 100 million gallons this winter, up from 40 million gallons." 

Chavez's remarks brought a rebuke from the local congressman, Charlie Rangel (even as Bush walloped Rangel indirectly in Florida over taxes, we'd note).