Tribute to Debra Burlingame

The column of the day is Tunku Varadarajan’s tribute to Debra Burlingame in the Wall Street Journal: “Westchester housewife.” Debra led the opposition to the International Freedom Center site planned for Ground Zero that Governor Pataki nixed this week. Toward the end of Varadarajan’s column is this little nugget:

After her op-ed [opposing the IFC] appeared in the Journal in June, she received calls from political players in Washington, asking her to drop her opposition to Mr. Bernstein’s project. She is prepared, only, to name John Bridgeland–a former director of the Domestic Policy Council in President Bush’s White House, deputy policy director for the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign, and, after 9/11, the first director of the USA Freedom Corps Office. He called twice “to discourage me…no, not discourage, to ‘explain what was actually going to be happening [at the Freedom Center],’ and that I’d ‘got it all wrong.’ I said to him, ‘Are you aware of some of the exhibits that they’re talking about?'” He wasn’t. “Here’s a man who didn’t know what was happening, yet he was picking up the phone and trying to effect an outcome.”

(Thanks to reader Pat Eicker and RealClearPolitics.)


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