Wilbert Joseph “Billy” Tauzin pledged $80 billion for a “seat at the table” in White House negotiations over the healthcare reform that Barack Obama campaigned for as a candidate and has been promoting during the first year of his presidency. Tauzin, a former congressman from Louisiana’s Third District, is now president and CEO of the powerful drug lobby Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association.
The mainstream media were predicting that a few thousand people would attend the 9/12 tea party in Washington, D.C., protesting runaway government spending, deficits, and taxation. Organizers would have been extremely pleased with 30,000. How many showed up? According to the London Daily Mail, a million people attended the tea-party rally. But other media sources such as the Associated Press put the number at tens of thousands.
President Obama made a solemn and mostly non-political speech on the anniversary of the September 11 bombings that will have politicos guessing about his policies in Iraq and Afghanistan for weeks to come. “Let us renew our resolve against those who perpetrated this barbaric act and who plot against us still,” Obama told an audience in front of the Pentagon memorializing the attacks of September 11, adding that “in pursuit of al Qaeda and its extremist allies, we will never falter.”