The bottom line is this: If Obama wins, we’ll probably get small-bore stasis; if Romney wins, we’re more likely to get bipartisan reform. Romney is more of a flexible flip-flopper than Obama. He has more influence over the most intransigent element in the Washington equation House Republicans. He’s more likely to get big stuff done.
What a nakedly obvious and pathetic ploy to sell a weak and failing candidate. And of course, there's no conservative meme that David Gregory is unwilling to echo out as a serious Beltway notion.
If you were like me last night, you went to Twitter to see live, up to moment reporting of damage on the East Coast due to Hurricane Sandy. I have family in New York and New Jersey and the power of the storm made me very scared for their safety. So far, the only report from them I've heard is a tree branch hitting a car. Others have not been so lucky.
But in between some eerie and just plain horrifying pictures, there was one tweeter who seemed to be tweeting out a lot of information that others needed to then correct, thereby sending the twitterverse into a lot of confusion at a time when the chaos was already overwhelming. That tweeter? @Comfortablysmug
What leads a person to do such a thing, which his critics have likened to shouting “fire” in a crowded movie theater? It’s unclear. But perhaps it has something to do with the nature of anonymity. If there are no consequences for posting false “BREAKING” news, there’s an incentive to do it to an accumulate a large audience.
What @comfortablysmug didn’t count on, apparently, was losing that anonymity. Based on photos he censored and posted to the account but I found unedited elsewhere, @comfortablysmug is Shashank Tripathi, a hedge-fund analyst and the campaign manager of Christopher R. Wight, this year’s Republican candidate for the U.S. House from New York’s 12th congressional district.FEC documents show Wight has paid Tripathi thousands of dollars this election cycle as a “consultant.” @comfortablysmug has been a vocal supporter of Mitt Romney and posted tweets suggesting he attended this year's Republican convention.
Yeah, it's petty. But for millions of New Yorkers and others along the Eastern seaboard, this was quite literally a life and death situation. And to purposefully send out false information that could lead to slower response times for actual emergencies is just unconscionable.
But then again, when do Republicans show concern for actual lives in the balance?
Wow, it's good to be a Republican, at least when it comes to your paycheck, although admittedly, it comes for the price of selling your soul:
Ten Romney for President staffers received bonuses — as much as $37,500 — in September, according to Federal Election Commission filings released today.
Romney political director Rich Beeson scored the largest amount, taking in a combined $75,000 in two payments on August 31, after the Republican National Convention, and September 13.
According to an spokesperson, the money was paid out of the campaign's account for the primaries, and are "win bonuses as part of people's employee agreements."
Win bonuses? That's a little premature. This isn't the first time that the Romney campaign has sent out big bonus checks to staffers. Last quarter, they gave out over $100,000 in bonuses as well. Ironically, while they're doling out those big checks (which is simply not done on the Democratic side--typically, consultants will get a commission of the ad buys), the Romney campaign isn't getting the donations the Obama campaign is getting
President Barack Obama’s re-election committee again raised more money than Republican nominee Mitt Romney last month, though the challenger and his allies -- including super-political action committees -- entered October with more combined money to spend.
Romney, the Republican National Committee and super-PACs Restore Our Future and American Crossroads began the final full month of the 2012 campaign with $178 million to spend, compared with $111 million for Obama, the Democratic National Committee and the super-PAC Priorities USA Action, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. The DNC’s coffer included $10.5 million it borrowed.
Even so, Obama had direct control over more money than Romney entering October, with the president’s campaign having $99.3 million on hand compared with a bank account balance of $63.1 million for the former Massachusetts governor. That means spending decisions on most of the money on Romney’s side of the leger falls to officials with the Republican National Committee and the super-PACS supporting him.
Do you think the donors wonder about these big paychecks going to staffers instead of towards furthering the campaign? Does that decision to pay unusually high bonuses countermand that Romney theme of a smart businessman who can fix the economy?
This is a big story in Philadelphia, and of course the local wingnuts are in heaven. Now, clearly, this teacher showed poor judgment - but she claims she was only joking with the student. Then again, Gaymon waited a few days before she gave that explanation, so it sounds like this young lady has a legitimate complaint.
Which is too bad, because that Democratic teacher has handed "proof" about intolerant liberals to the wingnut propaganda machine and hardened a stereotype in a young student's mind:
Samantha Pawlucy said she's afraid to return to Charles Carroll High School after she complained that a teacher mocked her for wearing a Romney t-shirt on dress-down day.
The sophomore said classmates, former friends, and even students from other schools have issued threats for what they see as lies and misinterpretation. That's what's she heard from other students and read on Facebook.
"I don't want to go to school and get jumped," said Pawlucy, a second degree black belt in Taekwondo, at her Port Richmond home Thursday evening. "I'm just really scared to go back to school."
The incident went viral after Pawlucy and her parents began publicizing her claim that Lynette Gaymon, her geometry teacher, had publicly humiliated her for her t-shirt.
Pawlucy was wearing a pink Romney/Ryan t-shirt on a "dress-down" day at school Friday when, she said, Gaymon began making fun of her. An adult aide waved a marker as if to draw an "X" on the shirt, Pawlucy said.
She also said Gaymon called the school "Democratic," and said Pawlucy's wearing of the Romney shirt was analogous to Gaymon, who is black, wearing a KKK shirt.
The situation got a lot worse the day after that story appeared in the local paper:
Angered by a teenager's claims of being humiliated by a teacher over a Romney/Ryan T-shirt, students at Charles Carroll High School ignored warnings from administrators and shouted obscenities out school windows at the girl's parents Friday morning.
Samantha Pawlucy had accused her geometry teacher of humiliating her for wearing the shirt, and stayed out of school after saying she learned students had made threats against her. To calm the situation, district officials addressed students Friday, urging them to leave Pawlucy alone.
Minutes later, some students were heckling Pawlucy's parents, shouting obscenities at them.
With the calls to their house and the harassment of the Pawlucys, the two women said, things have gotten out of control. Both expressed a desire to see both sides come together in a face-to-face meeting and settle things.
"Fair and square for everyone. How can this be rectified?" one aunt said. "I do believe that this still can be a done deal."
She said that when Gaymon told them about what happened, she knew her niece had made a mistake, albeit an honest one.
"I told her, 'There were two things that you did wrong,' " she said. "I said: 'One, you pinpointed the shirt. The second thing was to use the KKK.' "
She said her 28 years of experience teaching in New York City had taught her, "You have to be very careful what you say and how you say it, especially when it comes to a child. . . . The fact remains, in the classroom, you are the adult."
Mitt Romney clearly going for that all-important Boehner bronzer vote
You can process this information through whatever filter you deem relevant. For me, this seems ominous for the Romney campaign, but I'm wary of getting overly confident. It is the sign of an insecure candidate to demand that they be able to stack the deck of a town hall audience with supporters, yet that is just what Mittens did for his last Univision appearance:
Univision anchor Maria Elena Salinas told Buzzfeed that while both candidates had agreed to distribute their share of tickets mainly to students, Romney’s campaign reneged at the last minute, demanding to bus in activists to fill the seats.
But after exhausting the few conservative groups on campus, the Romney camp realized there weren't enough sympathetic students to fill the stands on their night — so they told the network and university that if they weren't given an exemption to the students-only rule, they might have to "reschedule."
The organizers relented. One Democrat with ties to the Obama campaign noted that Rudy Fernandez, the university official charged with coordinating the forums, is a member of Romney's Hispanic steering committee. Fernandez did not respond to BuzzFeed's questions about whether he gave preferential treatment to Romney's campaign.
In any case, Romney's team was allowed to bus in rowdy activists from around southern Florida in order to fill the extra seats at their town hall.
Whew! That was a close one for the Romney campaign. I won't rub it in that the Obama campaign had no problems with the first Univision arrangement. Maybe it was the few Latino conservatives they could find that precipitated Romney's need to go orange for the event. The more faces of color, the better, amirite?
Still, Romney worried that he didn't make the best impression, and demanded that he be able to re-shoot his intro:
When co-anchor Jorge Ramos noted, in Romney’s introduction, that he would only be available for 35 minutes, versus the full hour that President Obama had promised, Romney refused to come onstage until Univision agreed to re-shoot the introduction. ”Our president of news was talking to the Romney campaign and negotiating it,” Salinas told Buzzfeed. “But at that point, you can’t really argue with that. The candidate is there, everyone is in their seats, the show must go on. There’s a limit to how much we can object to it.”
They re-shot the intro, noting the time discrepancy at the end of the broadcast.
President Obama, by contrast, adhered to the original agreement, and threw no hissy fits.
This is hardly the first time a candidate (at any level) has tried to paint him or herself in the best light, trying to finagle the most favorable coverage. What is unusual is that the media isn't playing along and letting us know about all these behind-the-scenes drama. And when the media isn't helping you, that's a very bad sign.
You know what? I hope he meant it exactly the way they're accusing him of doing. Because their deregulation did put the working poor in chains, and the resulting crash did hit minorities even harder than anyone else. So however Joe meant it is fine with me:
(CBS News) Vice President Joe Biden has clarified a comment he made earlier today in which he said presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney would "put you all back in chains" by unshackling Wall Street.
The comment, to a crowd that appeared to be roughly half African-American, prompted strong criticism from Republicans. The Romney campaign said the comments "are not acceptable in our political discourse" and said they marked a "new low" for the Obama campaign. The Obama campaign deemed the complaints "faux outrage."
Oh puhleeze. Republicans, the party of rich old white men, are shocked at Biden's statement? They're just ticked that he's describing what they're up to!
Speaking in Wytheville, Va., late this afternoon, Biden hit back at the Romney camp's claims that his comments were outrageous, saying, "If you want to know what's outrageous, it's their policies."
"The last time these guys unshackled the economy, to use their term, they put the middle class in shackles," he said. "That's how we got where we are. Nine million jobs lost, wage stagnation, 16 trillion dollars in wealth you all lost, in your home equity, in your 401ks, and your pension plans - you're the ones that got nailed. All of America except for the very few."
Biden continued: "And I'm told when I made that comment earlier today in Danville, Virginia, the Romney Campaign put out a Tweet, you know Tweets, and went on the air, went on the airwaves saying 'Biden's outrageous in saying that - I think I said, instead of unshackled, unchained or - anyway, outrageous to say that, that's what we meant. I'm using their own words. I got a message for them, if you want to know want to know what's outrageous, it's their policies, and the effects of their policies on middle class America, that's what's outrageous."
As the mainstream media and pundits trying to be relevant send waves of ridiculous suggestions to wash over the public--Condoleezza Rice, General Petraeus, Chris Christie--savvy political watchers know that the better place to see who is the veep front-runner is actually Wikipedia.
The Romney campaign wants you to download its mobile app to be among the first to find out who Mitt is going to pick as his running mate, but if past history is any guide, you might want to instead be looking at Wikipedia — and whether any of the leading contenders' entries are being suddenly brushed up.
Sarah Palin's Wikipedia page was updated at least 68 times the day before John McCain announced her selection, with another 54 changes made in the five previous days previous. Tim Pawlenty, another leading contender for McCain's favor, had 54 edits on August 28th, with just 12 in the five previous days. By contrast, the other likely picks — Romney, Kay Bailey Hutchison — saw far fewer changes. The same burst of last-minute editing appeared on Joe Biden's Wikipedia page, Terry Gudaitis of Cyveillance, told the Washington Post.
According to those with the time to clock the changes, Rob Portman is ahead...way ahead of the other potential candidates. No surprise there, Portman has been leading the list of "safe" veep choices.
With Vice Presidential rumors swirling around Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, the media is beginning to ask tough questions about his family’s investments – specifically, a hotel in which Yahoo! News’ Chris Moody opted to spend a night. What he found there was… disconcerting. [..]
If Portman is selected to join Mitt Romney on the GOP presidential ticket, he will have to answer some tough questions about his time as President George W. Bush’s budget director and his prescription for how the Congress can avoid going over the “fiscal cliff” in January. But the hardest questions to answer may focus on his creepy doll hotel and the rumors that it serves as a gateway to the hereafter.
Late Thursday evening, Mitt Romney's presidential campaign launched a new fundraising drive, 'Meet The VP' -- just as Romney himself has narrowed the field of candidates to a handful, sources reveal.
And a surprise name is now near the top of the list: Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice!
The timing of the announcement is now set for 'coming weeks'.
The timing was actually announced as "some time between now and the Republican convention", which is when, typically, VP choices are announced. So it's breaking news that a Veep choice will be made in the next six weeks? Seriously?
As to the hinted selection of former Bush Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, well, that's all Bill Kristol, doncha know, who is the brain trust behind the selection of Sarah Palin as well. And as we have documented very well over the years, Kristol is *always* wrong. (As an aside to Drudge, blogger to blogger: if you think this is important and good news to push, why do you use a picture of Rice that looks grim and almost like a mug-shot? Old habits die hard?) But it's not helping the Romney campaign push this meme when the subject herself rejects it totally. And that doesn't begin to take into account the larger party's reaction:
This has all the makings of a classic, time-worn political ploy. The candidate openly flirts with several supposed veep contenders, each of whom fits a demographic that the candidate needs to woo. Midwesterners? Hispanics? Southerners? And now, in a week when Romney’s in trouble with the NAACP, the Condi rumors resurface.
It’s too cute by half, though.
Floating Condi has now roused the pro-life wing to action. Instead of Romney getting plusses for considering a black woman, the story could soon turn to how conservatives are beating up on a black woman. That’s not the best way to do damage control after being booed at the NAACP convention.
Rice is too smart to play this political game. A loyal Republican, she has said that she will help the GOP ticket with fundraising. But she says that’s as far as she goes.
After all, Rice is a cool, calm woman who has tackled conniving, evil international dictators. She chooses her words carefully. In 2008, she knew her remarks would never pass GOP muster during a vice presidential vetting process. In that way, she has solidly guaranteed that she will never be asked to be on a Republican ticket – not as long as abortion is a central issue.
That's right! Condoleezza Rice is pro-choice. Yeah, that's not going to play well with the extremists that now control the Republican Party. In fact, Tea Party Nation could hardly contain their disgust:
Is the Romney plan to try and lose?
The social conservatives will not come out for her, like they did for Palin, because Rice is pro-abortion. Social conservatives don’t really believe Romney when he claims he is pro-life, but to add a pro-abortion VP would really sink him with the social conservatives.
Rice is a consigliore of the Bush family. She worked for both of the Bushes. She is associated very closely with the Iraq war, which in case anyone has forgotten is one of the main reasons why the Republicans lost the House and Senate in 2006.
We do not need anyone else named Bush leading the Republican Party and we don’t need one of the Bush team players as a part of the future of the GOP.
Condi Rice is a RINO establishment Republican. She is as clueless about the middle class as Romney is.
Wow. Let's just chalk this up to yet another inept and transparently pandering move by the Romney campaign.
I'm gonna have to revise my previously-held belief that while their policies were noxious, the Republicans have been successfully dominating the framing of issues because of their message discipline. Maybe it's indicative of the weathervane that they have at the head of the party, but whatever claim to message discipline the GOP might have once had, they certainly do not now.
But someone forgot to give that memo to Chris Christie, who logged face time on all three major network Sunday shows. On This Week, Christie made the same comment when the suggestion was made that the polls were "rigged" against the Romney campaign: I don't buy that.
Chris Christie has some bad news for Republicans who say the polls are biased against Mitt Romney: "I don't buy that"
The tough-talking New Jersey governor and Romney surrogate appeared on ABC's This Week, and said, "You look at every different poll and look at its methodology and you can say whether it's a good or bad poll. But do I think there's a concerted effort to skew the polls against Governor Romney? No."
Several prominent Republics argued last week that the polls are misleading because the people conducting them are interviewing too few Republicans, among other methodological problems. Christie, who also made appearances on NBC's Meet the Press and CBS' Face the Nation on Sunday, acknowledged that Romney has had a hit a rough patch on the campaign trail.
Pssst. Hey Christie, that's not helping your party lower expectations of their candidate. Message disclipline, buddy.