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Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2006 12:54 p.m. EST
Chuck Schumer: Let Halliburton Run Ports

Sen. Charles Schumer, who's been a leading critic of the Bush administration's decision to approve a takeover of U.S. ports by a company based in the United Arab Emirates, said Monday that he'd rather give Hallibuton the contract.

"I'd take Halliburton over U.A.E. at this point, if I had to take a choice right now," Schumer told Fox News Channel's John Gibson.

The New York Democrat endorsed a Halliburton port takeover - an idea first floated by radio host Rush Limbaugh - even though his party has spent years vilifying the company because of its ties to Vice President Dick Cheney.

Schumer explained, however, that Democats had previously hated Halliburton because "they made large amounts of profit" from what he said were no-bid contracts.

But if Hallibuton "can do the best job and they get the contract on the merits," Schumer said, "I'd pat them on the back."