Capitol Hill Bureau Chief
Good morning, Capitolists! A leak, a bell, an angry anchor and 535 elected germ spreaders are making headlines this morning. Here's what's happening in Washington today:
* The leak heard 'round the capital is rocking Washington this morning, with a front-page story in the Washington Post detailing a confidential report from Gen. Stanley McChrystal on troop levels in Afghanistan. Bob Woodward reports McChrystal has warned the White House that if thousands more troops are not sent to the region this year, the war will "likely result in failure."
* The one network not to get face-time with Obama yesterday wasn't too happy about its conspicuous omission from the president's dance card. Reflecting on the snub, Fox News' Chris Wallace said yesterday of the Obama administration, "They are the biggest bunch of crybabies I have dealt with in my 30 years in Washington."
* Who says Hillary Clinton wasn't the big winner last November? The secretary of state didn't have to appear on five Sunday shows yesterday and still gets to ring the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange this morning. See her cheer the markets live at 9:30 EST.
* Bill Clinton has revealed the juiciest secrets of his presidency in interviews with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Taylor Branch, writes USA Today. Although Clinton discussed the Lewinsky affair with Branch, the biggest shocker is a story about then-Russian President Boris Yeltsin, who Clinton says was once found dressed hailing a cab in front of the White House, dressed only in his underwear, trying to get a late-night pizza during a state visit.
* Congressional offices are preparing for a possible H1N1 outbreak this fall, with administrative leaders distributing face masks and the CDC warning that even senators need to skip work if they come down with the flu. The Hill writes that 400 hand-sanitizing stations have been purchased to stop your extroverted, flesh-pressing leaders from spreading their dirty germs.
* Ahead this week, the Senate Finance Committee will debate Sen. Max Baucus' trimmed-down version of health care reform, the U.N. hosts world leaders for General Assembly week, and the Senate debates the Pentagon budget for the year, including troop levels in Iraq and Afghanistan.
* And finally, on the off chance you spent your Sunday morning not watching five Sunday shows, you can still catch President Obama's personal pitch on health care reform when he becomes the first commander in chief to appear on "The Late Show With David Letterman" tonight.