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Time to shine

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John Roberts has been nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court. Is it Sam Brownback's time to shine?[The Associated Press][1] reports: "Sen. Sam Brownback could raise his stature - and his hopes for a 2008 presidential bid - by playing a prominent role in nationally televised Senate hearings on President Bush's Supreme Court nominee."As a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Kansas Republican said he plans to be an active participant in what is expected to be a bitterly partisan confirmation process for federal appeals court judge John G. Roberts Jr. ..."Brownback has called the question of when life begins 'the central issue of our day' and he is sure to bring the abortion issue into the spotlight in the confirmation process. He has done so in courting social conservatives around the country this year as gathers support for a run at the GOP presidential nomination."'I think it's a chance for Brownback to show that he's a strong leader,' said Joe Aistrup, a political science professor at Kansas State University. 'It's a chance for him to distinguish himself and he can do that at a national hearing like this.'"But Aistrup said it still may be difficult for Brownback to compete for media attention with other conservatives like Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, also a potential contender for the Republican nomination. While Frist is not on the Judiciary Committee, he will have plenty to say about the proceedings."First, Brownback - like most everybody else - will have to figure out who Roberts is.[The Washington Post][2] reports: "Republican Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas acknowledged that he did not know who was nominated until reporters told him, even though he is a member of the Judiciary Committee, which will conduct hearings on Roberts just before or just after Labor Day. What he knows of Roberts is positive, Brownback said, and the hearings will be a great opportunity 'to debate the role of the courts in America today.'"Other links today:Sam Brownback links [(Washington Times) Frist tries to juggle stem-cell interests:][3] Conservatives have demanded that if the embryonic-stem-cell bill comes to the floor, so should their long-awaited human cloning ban, sponsored by Sen. Sam Brownback, Kansas Republican. If that does not happen, Mr. Brownback has promised to filibuster the embryonic-stem-cell bill. "If they want an up-or-down vote ... then we would like a vote on the human cloning ban," said David Christensen, director of congressional affairs for the Family Research Council. Todd Tiahrt links [(CNS News Service) Controversial Lincoln Memorial Video Still in Limbo:][4]After two and a half years of discussion and almost $20,000 devoted to revising a video shown to tourists at the Lincoln Memorial, the National Park Service has yet to satisfy either conservative or liberal critics. ... In March 2003, one month after Cybercast News Service published an exclusive report about the tape and amid pressure from conservative groups, the National Park Service indicated that it would "review" the video. But when word spread of those plans, liberals objected. ... U.S. Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) soon demanded changes to the video, prompting the National Park Service to indicate that revisions would be placed on a fast track. How to contact As always, you can find information to contact members of the Kansas congressional delegation [here.][5] [1]: http://www.macon.com/mld/macon/news/politics/12172379.htm [2]: http://www.concordmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050720/REPOSITORY/507200362/1013/NEWS03 [3]: http://www.washtimes.com/national/20050719-103349-5871r.htm [4]: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/viewstory.asp?Page=%5CSpecialReports%5Carchive%5C200507%5CSPE20050718a.html [5]: http://ljworld.com/extra/where_to_write.html#fed

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