Sen. Rand Paul, fresh off his second CPAC straw poll win, gave his two cents on Fox News on how he would respond to the Ukraine crisis: “I would immediately get every obstacle out of the way for our export of oil and gas. And I would begin drilling in every possible conceivable place within our territories in order to have production we can supply Europe with if it’s interrupted from Ukraine.” Right Sen. Paul, we can immediately start drilling and exporting oil and natural gas to Europe next week….I’m being sarcastic.
Republican presidential hopeful and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is feeling the heat for some racist emails sent by his deputy chief of staff, Kelly Rindfleisch, while he worked as a Milwaukee County executive. He found an email comparing welfare recipients to dogs, hilarious.
According to documents released Wednesday related to a secret investigation of Walker and his staff, then-deputy chief of staff Kelly Rindfleisch received an email in April 2010 that contained a photo of four dogs and mocked welfare recipients.
“This morning I went to sign my Dogs up for welfare. At first the lady said, ‘Dogs are not eligible to draw welfare’,” the email, first reported by Buzzfeed, read. “So I expla ned [sic] to her that my Dogs are mixed in color, unemployed, lazy, can’t speak English and have no frigging clue who the r [sic] Daddys are. They expect me to feed them, provide them with housing and medical care, and feel guilty because they are dogs.”
“That is hilarious. And so true,” Rindfleisch replied.
Rindfleisch was convicted of misconduct in office in 2012 for doing campaign work for a Republican candidate for lieutenant governor on government time.
The Scott Walker documents also contained a questionable email forwarded by another former aide, then-chief of staff Thomas Nardelli, involving a nightmare about waking up as black, Jewish, disabled, and gay.
Nardelli also circulated an off-color email containing a photoshopped picture of President Barack Obama wearing an acorn top for a hat, a reference to the now-defunded Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). Source: Talking Points Memo
MSNBC host Joe Scarborough is reportedly considering a 2016 presidential run. Well, that would be interesting since he obviously doesn’t have a lot of baggage. That we know about, that is. Still, it just shows you that the Republican Party has no credible presidential candidates to step up to the plate.
Meanwhile, some of Scarborough’s guests are beginning to talk him up as a possible candidate. Mark McKinnon — the former adviser to George W. Bush and John McCain who co-founded the group No Labels and appears on Morning Joe regularly — said he has talked about the prospect of a White House campaign with Scarborough “ever since we first met years ago, but always in the abstract.”
“On paper, he’s a great candidate,” McKinnon told The Daily Caller. “He has the kind of confidence, ideas and media savvy required to make it on the big stage. And he’d be a lot of fun to watch because he wouldn’t be afraid to mix it up with anybody on any topic. I think it would be highly entertaining and good for the party.”
Added McKinnon: “I think Joe looks at the potential field and thinks, ‘I could compete.’ And I think there are potential donors and supporters who think the same thing.” Source: Daily Caller
The latest freak-out to make the news cycle on Monday is former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s political ‘hit-list’ of enemies. Politico’s ‘bombshell’ is adapted from Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes’ new book “HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton.
The authors allege that Clinton and her aides kept an extensive spreadsheet on endorsements from the 2008 election. People on the list were graded on a one to seven scale, with one being the “most helpful” and seven being the “most treacherous.” Among those getting a ‘seven’ grade are Sens. Claire McCaskill, Patrick Leahy, Jay Rockefeller and Rep. Chris Van Hollen. There are some on the list who received leniency because of their special ties to President Obama, such as members of the Congressional Black Caucus and lawmakers from Illinois.
The article reports that aides to Hillary Clinton were only too happy when their enemies fell:
Years later, they would joke among themselves in harsh terms about the fates of folks they felt had betrayed them. “Bill Richardson: investigated; John Edwards: disgraced by scandal; Chris Dodd: stepped down,” one said to another. “Ted Kennedy,” the aide continued, lowering his voice to a whisper for the punch line, “dead.
Sen. Claire McCaskill crossed the Clintons big-time:
When the Clintons sat in judgment, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) got the seat closest to the fire. Bill and Hillary had gone all out for her when she ran for Senate in 2006, as had Obama. But McCaskill seemed to forget that favor when NBC’s Tim Russert asked her whether Bill had been a great president, during a Meet the Press debate against then-Sen. Jim Talent (R-Mo.) in October 2006. “He’s been a great leader,” McCaskill said of Bill, “but I don’t want my daughter near him.”
McCaskill regretted her remark instantly; the anguish brought her “to the point of epic tears,” according to a friend. She knew the comment had sounded much more deliberate than a forgivable slip of the tongue. So did Hillary, who immediately canceled a planned fundraiser for McCaskill. A few days later, McCaskill called Bill Clinton to offer a tearful apology. Bill He was gracious, which just made McCaskill feel worse. After winning the seat, she was terrified of running into Hillary Clinton in the Capitol. “I really don’t want to be in an elevator alone with her,” McCaskill confided to the friend.
The fact is, if this is all true, the Clintons NEVER forget. You cross them once, you make it on their sh*t list. No-one should be surprised that the toughest political dynasty in the US kept close tabs on friends and enemies. I am more concerned about the type of campaign Hillary Clinton will run if she throws her hat in the ring for the 2016 presidential elections.
I was surprised to hear about former Defense Secretary Robert Gates scathing rebuke of President Obama in his new book “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War.” Gates slammed President Obama’s leadership style and his commitment to the Afghanistan war. It’s pretty shocking that an former cabinet member, who occupied such a key position in the administration to go after a sitting president in such a manner. Considering that Robert Gates is a Republican, this book seems partisan at best. So much for President Obama reaching across the aisle and nominating a Republican to a cabinet position.
Gates wrote that by early 2010, he had reached the conclusion that President Obama “doesn’t believe in his own strategy and doesn’t consider the war to be his. For him, it’s all about getting out, ” the Washington Post reports. Um, why is it politically incendiary that President Obama wanted to get us out of Afghanistan? Don’t most Americans want us out of Afghanistan?
Obama, after months of contentious discussion with Gates and other top advisers, deployed 30,000 more troops in a final push to stabilize Afghanistan before a phased withdrawal beginning in mid-2011. “I never doubted Obama’s support for the troops, only his support for their mission,” Gates writes.
As a candidate, Obama had made plain his opposition to the 2003 Iraq invasion while embracing the Afghanistan war as a necessary response to the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, requiring even more military resources to succeed. In Gates’s highly emotional account, Obama remains uncomfortable with the inherited wars and distrustful of the military that is providing him options. Their different worldviews produced a rift that, at least for Gates, became personally wounding and impossible to repair.
In a statement Tuesday evening, National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said Obama “deeply appreciates Bob Gates’ service as Secretary of Defense, and his lifetime of service to our country.”
“As has always been the case, the President welcomes differences of view among his national security team, which broaden his options and enhance our policies,” Hayden said in the statement. “The President wishes Secretary Gates well as he recovers from his recent injury, and discusses his book.” Gates fractured his first vertebra last week in a fall at his home in Washington state. Source: Washington Post
The Republicans will pounce on Robert Gates’ explosive comments about President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton could pose a huge problem for the Democrats in 2016. That’s assuming Joe Biden runs for the presidency, since he claims he’s lost on foreign policy.
It is rare for a former Cabinet member, let alone a defense secretary occupying a central position in the chain of command, to publish such an antagonistic portrait of a sitting president. There are many contradictory parts in Robert Gates’ memoir. Seems like it’s all about selling books.
Ann Romney is either bitter about her husband losing the presidential election, or someone forgot to tell her the campaign is over and she’s really not relevant anymore. She blasted President Obama Monday night during an appearance on Piers Morgan’s show saying that she “didn’t think he was telling the truth’ over healthcare reforms. Um, yeah, we don’t think her husband was truthful about many things during his presidential campaign.
Ann Romney said: ‘Two weeks before … things started to gnaw at me a little bit. Obviously, we had the hurricane, Hurricane Sandy, that was taking all the attention off the election onto, you know, the president performing.’
She also said of President Obama, ”He’s put himself in a very sticky place because you either have to think that he was not telling the truth or he’s grossly incompetent.” When asked by Piers Morgan which she believed, she said, “a little bit of both” and added “I dont think he was telling the truth.”"The basic credibility of the President is at jeopardy.” Kinda like her husband’s credibility after the 47 percent remark.
So much for hope and change. The love-affair we came to have with President Obama is dissipating quickly, thanks to the Obamacare website fiasco. Many are calling this President Obama’s Katrina. From a historical perspective, second terms are never great for presidents. Just look at his predecessor, George W. Bush and the public relations trainwreck called “Mission Accomplished,” only all hell broke loose after that publicity stunt. The Obamacare rollout undermines President Obama’s credibility, on so many levels. I want him to succeed because this country will succeed, but I can’t understand how he could run two stellar presidential campaigns, using technology to his advantage, and only to be dogged by a faulty website and people losing coverage. I guess this is his “Mission Accomplished” nightmare.
It’s a sad commentary that top Democrats like Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and throwing their support behind Hillary Clinton, three years before the presidential election. Sounds a lot like George W. Bush and his toxicity during his second term. I will admit, nowadays when I hear President Obama talking about Obamacare and the website, I tend to tune him out. Damage already done in my mind, but I still support the Democrats because the Republican Party is a hotbed of racial insensitivity, anti-middle class, anti-poor, anti-immigration reform, anti-women, anti-gay. It’s time for President Obama to wake up and get to work. The Democrats are jumping ship and that is playing into the Republican Party narrative, as the reverse was true leading up to the 2008 elections. Over 30 Democrats sided with the Republicans on the “Keep Your Health Plan” Act. That’s bad.
Clearly Obamacare isn’t comparable to the Iraqi war, pushed by George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, on a lie. No weapons of mass destruction were ever found in Iraq. President Obama’s intent for universal healthcare for all Americans is a noble intent, but unfortunately, it has become President Obama’s Iraq war. This threatens his presidency and his legacy.
President Obama is wearing his quote that if people were happy with their current plans they could keep them like a top hat. The same way former president George H. W. Bush wears the same hat for telling the country “read my lips, no new taxes.” I can remember watching Barack Obama making his acceptance speech in 2008 after becoming the first black President of the United States. I beamed with joy as the tears rolled down my face. I thought for sure we had truly overcome some of the stubborn barriers that still dogged us as a country. But with three years left in his second terms, Barack Obama’s presidency seem to be working as well as the Obamacare website.
He has become a punching bag and a punch line over the Obamacare fiasco. While I scoff at the comparisons between the levees breaking and the calamity that ensued in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and Obamacare, I will concede one point — George W. Bush bungled his handling of the disaster as much as President Obama bungled Obamacare. If you add the National Security Agency’s surveillance scandal to this latest debacle, I can’t understand why President Obama has fired anyone yet? He’s not leading as he did when we got 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden. He’s leading from behind. He can’t rebuild his image with the same people at the Health and Human Services Department in tow. Unless the Obamacare website gets fixed by the end of the month, some Democrats may actually start calling for a repeal of the law, National Journal reports.
I won’t count President Obama out yet, but it’s troubling to me that what began as a honorable vision for affordable health care for all Americans has suddenly become an enormous joke, threatening the very things he promised — hope and change you can believe in. No. Mission not accomplished yet.
Alaska’s first half-term governor Sarah Palin criticized New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s weight, calling it “extreme.” Um, if I recall correctly, Gov. Christie has done something Sarah Palin has never done — served a full term as governor.
During an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, she was asked about sexism in politics. She claimed, like Hillary Clinton (in whose shoes she could never walk), she was also the victim of unfair treatment due to her gender. She said the press asks female candidates questions they would never ask a man.
Sarah Palin said, “You know, petty superficial things that the men don’t ever seem to hear much about, but a woman candidate will.”
Jake Tapper interjected, “Governor Christie hears about his appearance.”
Well, Sarah Palin just couldn’t help herself. She had to go there…..
“That’s because it’s been extreme, okay.” “It’s hard for some people not to comment on it.”
Now, what if we were to pull out the fact that she went through several schools to get a Bachelor’s degree. Or even the fact that she didn’t finish her term as governor? Should I go on? What a dingbat.
Colorado state Sen. Owen Hill, who is vying to unseat Sen. Mark Udall, went birther at the Denver County Republican Party’s First Friday Breakfast Nov. 1:
“You spend time out there [in a Kenyan slum] and little kids are running around barefoot in these kinds of streets and you ask them what they want to be, they want to be an astronaut, they want to be a physicist, a marine biologist, one kid even told me he wanted to be President of the United States. I held back my snarky comment that said ‘Well, you know what, we already have someone from Kenya as President of the United States.’” Source: Buzzfeed
The Republican Party just never learns that you can’t insult the first black president along racial lines and expect the black community to line up and vote for you. This is the continued disgrace that has permeated the GOP since 2008.
Last night’s election results were interesting. First New York City elected a progressive, Bill de Blasio as it’s next mayor. Hanging in the balance will be the NYPD’s controversial ‘stop-and-frisk’ policy, which CNN’s Don Lemon came under heavy fire for defending on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who seems to have a bullying problem, shellacked his Democratic opponent, who complained of party betrayal. Add the Virginia gubernatorial race to the mix, with left-leaning Terry McAuliffe’s win over Sen. Ted Cruz-backed Cuccinelli and you will see the Tea Party was pushed further back. Buh-bye Cooch.
I must also add, the black voters of Detroit stepped outside their comfort zone and elected the city’s first white mayor in 40 years — Mike Duggan.
Sheila Cockrel again: “He presented himself as a turnaround guy to a city desperate for a turnaround.”
Credentials, not charisma, carried Duggan to victory. Frustrated Detroit voters chose substance over style, stepping well outside their comfort zone in the same way fed-up Americans did in 2008 to make Barack Obama their first black president. Source: Detroit News
We know there will be a lot of finger-pointing and wrangling, for all the losers, particularly on the right, but one thing is crystal clear — the Tea Party was pushed back. We can’t celebrate too long because it was the long celebration after we elected the nation’s first black president in 2008 that led the Tea Party having big gains in the 2010 mid-term elections. We have to redouble our efforts to get them and their extremism out of Washington D.C.
Back to Virginia. Ken Cuccinelli’s loss reiterates my point that the Tea Party is on its way out. Even though you have the Koch Brothers and other big money backing these candidates, you can’t govern from an extremist position. Most Americans consider themselves moderate. The fact is, you can’t govern from the extreme right in a purple state like Virginia. Ken Cuccinelli also had another problem — right wingnut lieutenant gubernatorial candidate E. W. Jackson. That was a hot mess by itself. Some blame will be dished out to Libertarian candidate Robert Sarvis, who split the Republican votes. The fact in, Ken Cuccinelli was hampered by the government shutdown engineered by Tea Party extremists. Virginia was adversely affected by this three-week shutdown and he couldn’t make headway with voters. Women also broke from the GOP in droves over continued slights by the party on women’s rights.
Turning our eyes to the 2016 presidential election, it is clear that the Tea Party won’t have such a big influence as it did in the 2010 mid-term elections and with good reason. The Republican Party is going through its own civil war right now.
The latest poll for Public Policy Polling shows:
There are massive ideological splits in who Republicans support. Among voters identifying as ‘very conservative’ Christie gets only 3%, with Cruz leading at 26% followed by Paul at 18%, Bush at 15%, and Ryan at 13%. But with moderates Christie and Cruz’s numbers are nearly flipped with Cruz getting only 5% to 36% for Christie, 18% for Bush, and 10% for Paul.
Hillary Clinton’s electability improved in the poll as well:
On the Democratic side Hillary Clinton continues to be dominant. 67% of primary voters want her to be the party standard bearer in 2016 to 12% for Joe Biden and 4% for Elizabeth Warren, with nobody else polling above 2%. Clinton has over 60% support from liberals, moderates, men, women, whites, African Americans, young voters, and seniors alike.
If Clinton didn’t run Biden would lead the field with 27% to 19% for Warren, 6% each for Cory Booker and Andrew Cuomo, 4% for Kirsten Gillibrand, and 3% for Martin O’Malley. Those numbers represent a pretty big shift from 6 months ago when Biden got 38% in a Clinton-less field to 13% for Cuomo and 10% for Warren. Warren’s on the rise and Biden’s on the decline.
Even Gov. Chris Christie’s win wasn’t a stinging referendum from voters that they favor the Republican Party. On the contrary. He win, despite all his faults, prove that he can work with Republicans and Democrats to get the job done. Just look at his bromance with President Obama after superstorm Sandy hit? That’s what voters want. Chris Christie found a way to woo key Democrats in New Jersey:
Charles Stile: “Christie’s bold leadership during Superstorm Sandy, the shrewd marketing of his Jersey tough guy persona and several important legislative accomplishments are indeed important factors in the strong support for his reelection. But while the public was seeing all of that, Christie discreetly and methodically courted Democrats with every lever of power at his disposal. By the end, many of those Democrats would supply the manpower, money or simply the photo ops for his campaign.”
I would venture to say, Chris Christie has given the GOP leadership on ultimatum for the 2016 presidential elections — do you want someone who can get the job done or do you want to pander to the right wing extremists and alienate the majority of Americans? My money is still on Hillary Clinton as the next president, but I would be a liar if I said, the Republican Party shouldn’t give Chris Christie a serious look as a possible presidential candidate. Yeah, those pesky ethics problems will come up during the 2016 presidential election. That plus anything else that has been lurking in the background since then. We don’t need extremism in the White House. We need a moderate in the White House.