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Passed Over by Pelosi, Harman Doesn't Get Even. She Gets Mad.

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By Lois Romano
Thursday, January 4, 2007

Catfight aftermath: Rep. Jane Harman is still quite irked that House Speaker-designee Nancy Pelosi nixed her for chairman of the House intelligence committee -- and she's not exactly being stoic about it.

Friends and colleagues say Harman has openly complained that she was cut loose by her fellow California Democrat and one-time friend, Pelosi, who picked instead Silvestre Reyes (D-Tex.), a former Border Patrol agent. A Harvard Law graduate with a gold-plated political résumé, Harman was the ranking Democrat on the intelligence committee and first in line for the chairmanship.

She has lamented that Congress has lost its luster for her and that she is hoping for a job in a Democratic administration, according to a friend. "She's obsessed," the source said. "It's been hard for her not to take it personally, but it's over."

In 2003, Pelosi handpicked Harman to become the ranking Democrat on the panel, a post that Pelosi had occupied. But Pelosi made it known last year that Harman was out if Democrats took back the House. Pelosi and other liberal Democrats believed that Harman, a moderate, failed to challenge the administration's alleged abuses of intelligence. Harman was stunned by the news and launched an overtly aggressive campaign to win the chairmanship, which only served to strengthen Pelosi's resolve. A former House member who knows both women well said Harman "really needs to grow up" and "she's not simply entitled to a chairmanship."

Harman's office issued a statement saying the flap is "something in the past tense" and that the congresswoman is "looking forward to continuing to have a strong voice on national security issues" through her other committees.

As for Pelosi . . . she has clearly moved on.

A Complex Greeting

Nothing is ever simple when it comes to John Kerry.

The senator from Massachusetts and his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, sent out 75,000 Christmas cards with pictures of trees at each season. The Kerrys gushed over their "gratitude for the beauty of these trees and the life they represent."

But it didn't end there.

The card came in an odd-looking envelope, one of those with a return-mail flap and instructions to send it to . . . well, to a recycling company, so "it can be made into new carpet tile."

Carpet tile?

We want a "world without waste . . . where every product either returns safely to the soil or becomes a new product."


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© 2007 The Washington Post Company

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