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Overheated rhetoric overshadows bipartisan compromises

Examples of recent extreme political rhetoric and bipartisan compromises:

THE TALK:

_Howard Dean: "The Republicans are not very friendly to different kinds of people. They're a pretty monolithic party. They all behave the same, and they all look the same. It's pretty much a white, Christian party."

_Sen. Richard Durbin: "If I read this to you and did not tell you that it was an FBI agent describing what Americans had done to prisoners in their control, you would most certainly believe this must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime—Pol Pot or others—that had no concern for human beings. Sadly, that is not the case. This was the action of Americans in the treatment of their prisoners."

_Karl Rove: "Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 in the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers."

THE WALK:

_Bankruptcy legislation: sweeping changes that make it harder for people to file for bankruptcy protection. Senate vote: 74-25. House vote: 302-126.

_Class-action lawsuits: overhaul of litigation law, making it harder to file broad-based lawsuits against corporations. Senate vote: 72-26. House vote: 279-149.

_Judges deal: Seven Democrats and seven Republicans in the Senate reach agreement to let judicial nominees be confirmed, except in "extraordinary circumstances," and to deny support for efforts to bulldoze treasured Senate rules on open debate.

_Energy legislation: comprehensive Senate bill that offers incentives to coal and oil industries as well as cleaner renewable fuels. Bipartisan passage expected Tuesday.

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(c) 2005, Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services.

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