Kate Zernike's front-page profile of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (featuring a large picture of Pelosi shaking Bush's hand at last night's State of the Union address) opened with a celebration of Pelosi's femaleness and ends with a tribute to the left's favorite new Bush fighter, Sen. James Webb of Virginia.
"The first two words of the evening on Tuesday were evidence of how much has changed here: 'Madam Speaker," boomed Congressional escorts, 'the president of the United States.'"
That's in apparent contrast to boring "white males" like the vice president: "She sat on the dais next to Mr. Cheney, her junior by several months, but an emblem of a generation of white male politicians."
During the 2006 campaign, the Times didn't go "macaca" for Democratic candidate (now Senator) James Webb of Virginia like the Washington Post did, but does go a little mawkish over Webb on Wednesday.Near the end of Zernike's story:
"Perhaps the most poignant commentary on the war and the plan to increase troops came in the Democratic response to the speech, given by Senator James Webb of Virginia. He had been chosen because, as Senator Harry Reid, the Democrats' leader, said, he understood what it meant to go to war. A former secretary of the Navy and ex-marine, his son is serving in Iraq.
"In his speech, he held up a photograph of his father serving as an Air Force captain in Germany. He had carried it with him for most of his life, he said. And as a child, he had taken it to bed for three years as he prayed for his father's safe return."
In a separate story, reporter Jeff Zeleny seemed to sign on to Webb's "two Americas"-style response to Bush's State of the Union address: "'It's almost as if we are living in two different countries,' Mr. Webb said, noting that corporate profits might be reaching new highs, but that those benefits were reserved for the few. 'The middle class of this country - our historic backbone and our best hope for a strong society in the future - is losing its place at the table.'"