These are my links for March 9th through March 12th:
President 2012 GOP Poll Watch: Too close to call in Alabama and Mississippi – Tuesday looks like it’s going to be a close election night in both Mississippi and Alabama. In Mississippi Newt Gingrich is holding on to a slight lead with 33% to 31% for Mitt Romney, 27% for Rick Santorum, and 7% for Ron Paul. And Alabama is even closer with Romney at 31% to 30% for Gingrich, 29% for Santorum, and 8% for Paul.
Gingrich and Santorum are both more popular than Romney in each of these states. In Mississippi Gingrich’s net favorability is +33 (62/29) to +32 for Santorum (60/28) and +10 for Romney (51/41). It’s a similar story in Alabama where Santorum’s at +32 (63/31), Gingrich is at +26 (58/32), and Romney’s at only +13 (53/40).
The reason Romney has a chance to win despite being less popular in both states is the split in the conservative vote. In Mississippi 44% of voters describe themselves as ‘very conservative’ and Romney’s getting only 26% with them. But he’s still in the mix because Gingrich leads Santorum only 35-32 with them. In Alabama where 45% of voters identify as ‘very conservative,’ Romney’s at just 24%. But again he remains competitive overall because his opponents are so tightly packed with those voters, with Santorum at 37% and Gingrich at 31%.
The strip, published on Monday and scheduled to run all week, has been rejected by several papers, while others said they were switching it from the comic section to the editorial page.
In an email exchange with the Guardian, Trudeau expressed dismay over the papers’ decision but was unrepentant, describing as “appalling” and “insane” Republican state moves on women’s healthcare.
Gingrich, Perry deny they seek a joint ticket – Newt Gingrich’s spokesman on Sunday dismissed speculation about a potential Gingrich-Rick Perry ticket being announced before the Republican National Convention in August, saying the two camps have not discussed the idea “at any level.”
A report by Fox News cited “sources close to the Gingrich campaign” saying preliminary conversations about such a ticket have begun with the hopes that pairing the former Speaker of the House and the Texas governor might unite evangelical, tea party and other conservative voters.
But Gingrich spokesman R.C. Hammond said no one in the campaign has reached out to Perry’s camp about a shared ticket.
Candidate-filing deadline extended in 3 Ventura County districts – The secretary of state has determined that the deadline for candidates to file to run for office will be extended until Wednesday in three political districts that include portions of Ventura County — the 26th Congressional District, the 19th Senate District and the 38th Assembly District.
State law provides for such extensions whenever an incumbent eligible to run for re-election decides not to do so.
The expensive systems were inaugurated last year amid controversy over its worth. A primitive Kassam rocket costs terrorists only a few hundred dollars while each Iron Dome anti-missile missile costs $50,000.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu stated Saturday night, “We will continue to improve home front defense including by means of additional Iron Dome systems, the effectiveness of which was shown again over the weekend.”
“Game Change” is not a movie about Sarah Palin. And it’s definitely not about staffers like me.
It’s a film about the vast, murky gray area in which the majority of politics takes place. I’m not talking about what you see on television: the speeches, the rallies, the debates. I’m talking about the man-in-the-mirror moments, the decision-making that takes place behind closed doors, with the counsel of very few men and women, and with high stakes and irreversible consequences.
Watching “Game Change” is like reliving the most tumultuous professional roller coaster ride on which I’ve ever been. It brought back the highs – Palin’s surprise selection and her glorious moment on stage at our national convention – and the now well-documented lows.
In the end, it’s also a film about how far great men like John McCain are willing to go in order to serve the country they love. Ultimately, every candidate makes the same calculation he did: ”Whom can I select to help me win, and will that person make a good governing partner if we prevail.”
Movies like “Game Change” bring politics to life in an important way by showing the human beings behind the headlines and the caricatures. And on the eve of another national presidential contest, it’s probably a good idea to remind ourselves that all our candidates are human.
Why Job Growth Is Likely to Slow – If you looked only at the monthly jobs report, you could start getting pretty optimistic about the American economy. The largest, broadest survey of employment — a survey of businesses — shows the best job growth in more than five years over the last 12 months, with the pace mostly accelerating in recent months. The other survey that the Labor Department does — of households — shows even faster job growth, suggesting that the business survey may be understating the economy’s strength.
But the jobs report isn’t the only measure of economic activity, and another major measure — of gross domestic product — doesn’t look quite so cheerful. The most likely situation is that job growth will slow in coming months, economists say, which will make President Obama’s economic narrative a bit more complicated than it now is.
On Friday, Macroeconomic Advisers, one of the most closely watched forecasting firms, reduced its estimate of economic growth in the current quarter to an annual rate of 1.8 percent, from 2 percent. And 1.8 percent growth does not generally lead to very strong job growth. In the fourth quarter of last year, by comparison, the economy grew 3 percent.
Beyond the current quarter, forecasters expect the economy will grow at an annual rate of 2 to 2.5 percent for the rest of the year, according to Bloomberg.
Yes, Scott Walker has governed as he campaigned – With the recall effort against Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker heating up, Democrats are recycling the old claim that somehow Walker’s public union reforms came out of nowhere once he took office.
Earlier this week, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that one of the Democrats hoping to challenge Walker, Kathleen Falk, “repeatedly accused Walker of being dishonest during his 2010 campaign, citing as a prime example his decision to all but eliminate collective bargaining for most public workers even though he didn’t talk about it during his run for office.”
To be sure, the eventual budget repair bill did include measures that weren’t specifically proposed during the campaign, but it’s typical to campaign on broad outlines and fill in the specifics when elected. The bottom line is that Walker’s reforms shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anybody. For more, check out this still relevant February 2011 Stephen Hayes piece.
Government Accountability Board director Kevin Kennedy said in a memo to the full board that those dates make the most sense given the work that remains to be done verifying signatures on recall petitions and other timing concerns related to the proximity of the April 3 presidential primary election.
The full board was to discuss the issue Monday and if it agrees, ask a Dane County judge for more time on Wednesday.
The attorney for Democrats who launched the recall efforts said he would oppose the request in court.
“That seems totally unreasonable and unnecessary and it would change the character of the election,” attorney Jeremy Levinson said. Democrats have consistently argued the recalls should be held as soon as possible.
Republican Party spokesman Ben Sparks refused to comment on the proposed election dates. Instead, he reiterated the party’s position that multiple recalls be held on the same dates to cut down on election expenses. The elections board has also advocated for scheduling only two election dates.
Under the judge’s order currently in place, any primary elections would take place May 1 and the general election would happen May 29.
The real unemployment rate? It sure isn’t 8.3% – Even if it were a legit number, the 8.3% February unemployment rate, released today by the Labor Department, would be simply terrible—and unacceptable. It would still extend the longest streak of 8%-plus unemployment since the Great Depression. The U.S. economy hasn’t been below 8% unemployment since Obama took office in January 2009. And back in May 2007, unemployment was just 4.4%.
But, unfortunately, the true measure of U.S. unemployment is much, much worse.
1. If the size of the U.S. labor force as a share of the total population was the same as it was when Barack Obama took office—65.7% then vs. 63.9% today—the U-3 unemployment rate would be 10.8%.
2. But what if you take into the account the aging of the Baby Boomers, which means the labor force participation (LFP) rate should be trending lower. Indeed, it has been doing just that since 2000. Before the Great Recession, the Congressional Budget Office predicted what the LFP would be in 2012, assuming such demographic changes. Using that number, the real unemployment rate would be 10.4%.
The statewide poll conducted by Alabama State University’s Center for Leadership and Public Policy showed 22.7 percent of likely Republican voters supported Santorum, who is scheduled to make campaign appearances Thursday in Huntsville and Mobile.
Former Massachussetts Gov. Mitt Romney trailed Santorum with 18.7 percent, followed by Newt Gingrich, the former Speaker of the House from neighboring Georgia, with 13.8 percent.
Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) called Limbaugh’s show “offensive” and told CNN he has been “delighted” to see advertisers drop the program in the wake of outrage over Limbaugh calling a Georgetown University law student a “slut” and a “prostitute.” Sandra Fluke, the student, had testified for House Democrats in favor of the White House’s contraception coverage mandate.
“We’re all impatient. We all want to know who the nominee is so we can get to work,” he said in an interview with the Buzz. “So certainly, yeah, the sooner the better. But I’m not concerned. This is the process and the process will work its way through. What I think is very important for Republicans is not to talk ourselves into this idea that somehow because we’re having a longer primary than we’ve had in past years that we’re somehow doomed to failure in November. We are going to have a nominee whether it’s next week, next month of three months from now. At that point, the election will be reframed. It will no longer be about the super PACs, or supporting Santorum vs. Romney or Gingrich or Paul. The election will become a choice between two very different people, between two very different views of America. And the election will become about the president’s record.”
Do you think it’s time for Newt Gingrich to drop out?
“I don’t think anybody should be told to drop out. I think people should run until they feel that either they don’t want to continue or they don’t see a path to victory. I’ve never been a believer in asking people to drop out of a race because I had a bunch of people ask me to drop out of a race.”
But they also said the famously unpredictable Gingrich could confound expectations and continue on, despite pleas from some conservatives to step aside and give Rick Santorum a head-to-head matchup with Mitt Romney.
Yet attracting Hispanic votes may require more investment, in more places, than either party anticipates. For all the hype about the Hispanic vote in 2012, the aftershocks of the recession may have created a logistical barrier in many states for voter registration.
New numbers suggest that previous predictions of between 11 and 12 million Hispanic citizens voting in 2012 might be overly optimistic, said Antonio Gonzalez, president of the William C. Velasquez Institute and the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project. Barring a major investment in registration, turnout, or both, that’s about 10.5 million votes cast.
Larry Sabato: Six Days on the Road to Tampa – WSJ.com – Unlike many presidential races in recent history, there probably won’t be a “eureka” moment for this GOP nomination. But there are six decisive days that will be worth watching on the road to the Republican nominating convention in Tampa. Three favor Mitt Romney and three favor his opponents.
• March 13: Primaries in Alabama and Mississippi, caucuses in Hawaii—Mr. Romney not favored.
In the initial nine weeks of primaries, Mr. Romney has shown a political equivalent of Wall Street’s dead-cat bounce: Victories in one week guarantee no momentum in the next. It may be about to happen again. While Mr. Romney may win moderate Hawaii, losses probably loom for him in Alabama and Mississippi.
The Chinese Military’s Great Leap Forward – China’s announcement of a more than 11 percent increase in declared military spending – following two full decades of double-digit increases – raises several uncomfortable questions for Asia and the West. It is natural for a rising power like China to develop capabilities to defend its expanding array of interests. On the other hand, China’s ascent has been made possible by a benign security environment that well served China’s goal of “peaceful development.” China’s growing military capabilities now threaten to upset that order in ways that, ironically, could complicate China’s security environment at the same time as slowing economic growth intensifies its internal challenges.
For months, Republicans had been bullish about their prospects for widening their margin in the House and picking off Democratic senators. But some are now questioning whether they could be done in if Mitt Romney limps out of the primary a severely weakened nominee.
Poll: Slim majority support Jerry Brown’s tax plan – Even though most Californians think the budget remains a big problem, just a slim majority of likely voters say they support Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed tax initiative for the November ballot, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Public Policy Institute of California.
Using the Democratic governor’s ballot title and summary for the first time, the poll found 52 percent of likely voters support temporarily raising the state sales tax and income tax on high-wage earners while 40 percent oppose doing so. Another 8 percent said they are undecided. That’s a drop from past surveys,which found majority support for his plan to temporarily raise taxes. PPIC found Brown’s proposal had 68 percent support in January, before the ballot language was finished.
Rush Limbaugh’s insincere critics—Michael Kinsley – Consumers who are avoiding products by Limbaugh’s advertisers are engaged in what’s known in labor law as a secondary boycott. This means boycotting a company you have no grievance with, except that it does business with someone you do have a grievance with.
Secondary boycotts are generally frowned upon, or in some cases (not this one) actually illegal, on the grounds that enough is enough. There’s sense to that outside the labor context, too. Do we want conservatives organizing boycotts of advertisers on MSNBC, or either side boycotting companies that do business with other companies who advertise on Limbaugh’s show, or Rachel Maddow’s?
As we all know, Limbaugh’s First Amendment rights aren’t involved here — freedom of speech means freedom from interference by the government. But the spirit of the First Amendment, which is that suppressing speech is bad, still applies. If you don’t care for something Rush Limbaugh has said, say why and say it better. If you’re on the side of truth, you have a natural advantage.
And if you’re taking on Rush Limbaugh, you’re probably on the side of truth.
More Than 15% Obese in Nearly All U.S. Metro Areas – Adult obesity rates were higher than 15% in all but three of the 190 metropolitan areas that Gallup and Healthways surveyed in 2011. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas, residents were the most likely to be obese, at 38.8%, while people living in Boulder, Colo., were the least likely, at 12.1%.
Pingree Will Not Make Senate Bid – Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) said she won’t run for the U.S. Senate, a decision that could boost the independent Senate bid of former Gov. Angus King (I), the Portland Press Herald reports.
Said Pingree: “This isn’t the right time for me to run for the U.S. Senate.”
“Pingree’s decision was not unexpected. After King said Monday night that he would run as an independent, Pingree acknowledged that she shared widely discussed concerns that she and King might divide the Democratic base, thus paving the way for victory by a Republican contender.”
43% Say New Candidate Should Enter GOP Race; Most Republicans Disagree – Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney may be winning the Republican presidential race, although he appears to be making himself a little less popular in the process. A plurality of voters think it would be better for the GOP if a new candidate jumped in the race, but most Republicans don’t agree.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 45% of Likely U.S. Voters now hold at least a somewhat favorable opinion of Romney, but that includes just nine percent (9%) with a Very Favorable view of him. Forty-nine percent (49%) regard Romney at least somewhat unfavorably, with 23% who share a Very Unfavorable opinion.
Consider this: if Mitt wins every remaining all-or-nothing state but one, and half of the remaining proportional delegates, he would likely still fall short of the magic nomination number of 1,144—which would force him to rely on unpledged delegates, the Republican version of the infamous Democratic super-delegates in 2008, to claim his party’s mantle.
The annual reports detail statements of economic interests and are designed to reveal potential conflicts of interests lawmakers might have relating to income sources, assets and gifts received.
Among the noteworthy gifts listed in the report are $1,445 in hotel accommodations and cultural activities paid for by the government of Vietnam and the Chinese International Affairs Foundation received by Sen. Fran Pavley, D-Agoura Hills, while on a fact-finding trip to Asia last fall with three other state senators.
Limbaugh Has Lost 29 Advertisers – Conservative radio icon Rush Limbaugh is hemorrhaging advertisers following his harsh comments about a Georgetown University law student last week, with at least 29 halting their commercials on his show, according to Politico. Two stations have dropped him as well. The Atlantic Wire counted 31 advertisers who have abandoned Limbaugh.
These are my links for March 2nd through March 6th:
Sandra Fluke Argued for Mandatory Coverage for Sex-Change Surgery – Rather belatedly, we are becoming aware that this supposedly typical Georgetown coed is not very typical at all:
[B]irth control is not all that Ms. Fluke believes private health insurance must cover. She also, apparently, believes that it is discrimination deserving of legal action if “gender reassignment” surgeries are not covered by employer provided health insurance. She makes these views clear in an article she co-edited with Karen Hu in the Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law.
The title of the article . . . is “Employment Discrimination Against LGBTQ Persons” and was published in the Journal’s 2011 Annual Review.
Remember, as Byron York previously reported, Fluke was rejected as a last-minute substitute witness at a Feb. 16 committee hearing because staffers for Chairman Issa were unable to discover Fluke’s claim to expertise relevant to the subject of the hearing. This law school journal article is the sort of thing that might have been discovered about Fluke’s background, had the Democrats who put Fluke forward as a witness done so with the usual 72-hour advance notice.
Call Them Out By Name: Sandra Fluke, David Gregory and David Friend – After going to an Andrew Breitbart memorial event on Saturday, I am more inspired than ever to fight back against the Left. Three things that were said stood out to me in that regard. Number one, Dana Loesch said we need to follow Breitbart and hit Leftists by “calling them out by name.” Then Brandon Darby mentioned that the Left was taking advantage of our grief and we were losing on Limbaugh. Finally, I’m struck with the image of Breitbart himself in this tribute video looking straight at the camera and simply saying, “War.”
This is war. I am going to defend Limbaugh from the radical Leftists who want to take him off the air. And I am going to call out our opponents by name. Starting with Sandra Fluke, David Gregory and David Friend.
Sandra Fluke, Gender Reassignment, and Health Insurance – Sandra Fluke is being sold by the left as something she’s not. Namely a random co-ed from Georgetown law who found herself mixed up in the latest front of the culture war who was simply looking to make sure needy women had access to birth control. That, of course, is not the case.
As many have already uncovered Sandra Fluke she is, in reality, a 30 year old long time liberal activist who enrolled at Georgetown with the express purpose of fighting for the school to pay for students’ birth control. She has been pushing for mandated coverage of contraceptives at Georgetown for at least three years according to the Washington Post.
2011 total: 254 companies leave California – In 2011, 254 California companies moved some or all of their work and jobs out of state, 26% more than in 2010, according to Irvine business consultant Joe Vranich who has been tracking these departures since 2009.
Twenty-eight of these companies were in Orange County. Seven of them moved or expanded to Texas, three to Mexico, two to Washington and one each to 16 other states, said Vranich, who has changed the name of his business from The Relocation Coach to Spectrum Location Solutions, which helps companies define their goals, find new locations and coordinate the move.
The pace is accelerating, Vranich said. An average of 4.9 businesses left California each week of 2011, compared to 3.9 per week (202 total) in 2010 and one a week (51 total) in 2009. In what he calls “disinvestment events,” Vranich counts companies that move jobs, facilities or headquarters out of California and “in carefully selected instances, companies making major capital investments in plants elsewhere that in the past would have been built in California,” Vranich said.
Now, I believe in general principles, and I want to know what the general principle is about accepting apologies. I’d like to nail down people like Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Eric Boehlert, because their candidate, Barack Obama, is one of the greatest purveyors of apologies in the history of the world!
There is a difference between heartfelt apology, and a political confession. An apology would not be enough to obtain release from prison, while a confession, which is a political statement that has nothing to do with the heart, held out the possibility of getting one out of prison:
MoveOn.Org – Carbonite CEO tied to : time for conservatives to fight blacklisting?
No, you didn’t. Not the way you will in a minute. But first?
It’s time to turn the tables.
It’s time to stand up to the bullies.
It’s time to Rally for Rush.
Rush Limbaugh has discussed at length — at length — what Sandra Fluke and her statist cronies are up to. Yes, he used the words “slut” and “prostitute” — using the ludicrous to make his point. Ms. Fluke, in one of the most pathetic, shamelessly whining stories in recent memory, demands to be paid for her sex life because it costs $3,000 for three years of birth control while she’s at law school. She demands that a Catholic university violate its fundamental right to religious liberty so she can have others pay for her sex life. So Rush asked the farcical obvious about somebody who demands that someone else pay her for her apparent, self-admitted prolific sex life. He spent two solid days relating her greed for other people’s money and a lack of personal responsibility to the oldest of principles.
Right on cue, the blacklisting crowd came out of their Stalinist caves. Having driven Lou Dobbs from CNN, cut off Beck’s windpipe at Fox, severed Pat Buchanan from MSNBC, thus emboldened they have now set their sights on Rush.
When the late, great Andrew Breitbart was asked in a Twitter conversation whether he’d apologize for his website’s posting of a video of a speech by Agriculture Department official Shirley Sherrod that led to her forced resignation, Breitbart replied, “Apologize for what?”
Breitbart knew the sensitivities and the hypocrisy of the left when their sacred cows and double standards were under attack.
Hell hath no fury, he knew, like a liberal whose dogma stands exposed. He wondered why those on the right always had to apologize for saying liberal emperors had no clothes, when the left never had to apologize for anything no matter how outrageous or offensive.
L.A. Times Attempting Suicide – Today the Los Angeles Times is charging for visiting its site online. This is a suicide attempt that will severely damage the paper. Its parent company, Tribune Co., long has been in bankruptcy, running up $233 million in legal fees.
California Students Protest Education Entitlement Cuts – Middle-aged, greying 1960s radicals, pimply faced kids, teachers, throngs of SEIU members, angry Occupy protestors, and union members of all kinds descended upon the state Capitol Monday. They demanded, “Wall Street and the wealthy 1 percent, pay to refund education, jobs, essential services, and a better future.”
The protest was sponsored by the California Teachers Association and the Occupy movement.
The protest even included roving bands of gang-attired youth probably not connected to education, dreadlock-wearing Rastafarians, earth children and the unmistakable sweet smell of marijuana wafting about. Vapid stares, body odor, anger and an abundant use of the “F” word, some attended the rally with an express purpose in mind, while others appeared less committed and just were there for the chanting and day off of school. “Enough is enough,” came the rally cry from college student body presidents. “We stand in solidarity,” said one speaker as Che Guevara signs waived wildly.
Services will begin at 12:30 p.m. at St. Paschal Baylon Catholic Church in Thousand Oaks for retired Realtor Joseph “Joe” Brown.
Brown died Thursday in his Thousand Oaks home at age 86 with his wife, Dolly, by his side. He had been suffering from heart problems for some time, but Dolly Brown, 65, said his death was somewhat sudden.
“He was lying in his hospital bed about a week ago and he said, ‘I’m not being very productive,’ ” she said with a smile.
By all accounts, “productive” was an understatement when it came to Joe Brown. Among his many accomplishments was helping to establish Mary Health of the Sick Convalescent Home in Newbury Park, the Conejo Valley Association of Realtors and the Ventura County Community Foundation in Camarillo, to name a few of his efforts.
Lenny Dykstra gets 3 years in California prison – Disgraced ex-New York Mets outfielder Lenny Dykstra on Monday was sentenced to three years in a California state prison after pleading no contest to grand theft auto and providing a false financial statement.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Cynthia Ulfig sentenced Dykstra after refusing to allow him to withdraw his plea and said the scam to lease high-end automobiles from dealerships by providing fraudulent information and claiming credit through a phony business showed sophistication and extensive planning.
“He obviously didn’t have the money to get the vehicles,” Ulfig said. “His conduct was indeed criminal.”
GOP Hopefuls Losing Ground to Obama Among Latinos, Poll Says – Despite growing disappointment in his handling of immigration issues, Latino voters favor President Barack Obama by six-to-one over any of the Republican presidential hopefuls, showed a Fox News Latino poll conducted under the direction of Latin Insights and released Monday.
The national poll of likely Latino voters indicated that 73 percent of them approved of Obama’s performance in office, with over half those questioned looking favorably upon his handling of the healthcare debate and the economy, at 66 percent and 58 percent respectively.
Released on the eve of the Super Tuesday primaries in the race for the GOP nomination, the Fox News Latino poll shows former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with 35 percent of Latino voter support, to Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s 13 percent, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich’s 12 percent, and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum’s 9 percent.
I’m talking about the second-tier of the warfare, the attempt to intimidate those removed by one or more degrees of separation from the dispute, and to use them as tools against the target.
And I’m not talking about the attempt to get advertisers to stop advertising on Rush Limbaugh’s show, or Fox News, although that would be bad enough. I’m talking about the second-tier of the warfare, the attempt to intimidate those removed by one or more degrees of separation from the dispute, and to use them as tools against the target.
I would not be surprised to see a similar reaction from the right to the left’s attacks on advertisers, but that would be a mistake. What is happening goes beyond Obama’s call for people to argue with their neighbors and get in their faces. It goes far beyond Bill Clinton’s politics of personal destruction directed at accusers, and beyond name-calling by right wing pundits. This total war, in which no one is allowed to be non-political and neighbors and clients become mere pressure points, is a dangerous development.
Rush: “I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke”; Update: Ironic tweet of the day – I think Rush did the right thing in apologizing to Fluke. However, let’s keep in mind that it was Fluke who made her sexual activity a matter of national political debate by insisting that the government pass laws and regulations forcing employers and insurers to provide her free contraception, and apparently as much as she and others demand. It’s Republicans who believe that contraception should remain a private affair, and that employers and insurers should be free to decide whether to cover contraception for their employees and customers or not. Democrats used Fluke to demand that those choices be stripped from private enterprises and instead be forced by the executive branch to entirely subsidize contraception.
That is the argument we should be making, as Republicans and conservatives. If you want your sexual choices to remain private, don’t use the government to force other people to subsidize them. Then we won’t have to turn the sex lives of Georgetown law school students into topics for political speculation.
Gallup’s Unadjusted Unemployment Data Suggest Increase in BLS Adjusted Figure – Gallup finds U.S. unemployment, as measured without seasonal adjustment, to be 9.1% in February, based on almost 30,000 interviews with a random sample of Americans. When Gallup applies the 0.5-percentage-point seasonal adjustment that the government applied to its unadjusted data for February last year, it produces an adjusted unemployment rate for February 2012 of 8.6% –a substantial increase from the 8.3% adjusted rate the government reported for January.
As Michigan Republicans headed to the polls Tuesday morning, President Obama delivered an aggressive defense of the bailout of the auto industry and his presidency in general, harshly criticizing GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney – though he never mentioned him by name.
“I’ve got to admit, it’s been funny to watch some of these folks completely try to rewrite history now that you’re back on your feet,” the president said to a raucous crowd at the United Auto Workers Convention. “The same folks who said if we went forward with our plan to rescue Detroit, ‘you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye.’”
There’s no mistake who Harry Reid’s political target is as Republican voters head to the polls today in Arizona and Michigan.
On Monday, the Senate majority leader held a conference call blasting GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney for touting endorsements from immigration “extremists” like Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach. And on the Senate floor Tuesday, Reid attacked Romney’s opposition to President Barack Obama’s bailouts that many credit for saving the Detroit auto industry.
“I’m sorry to say that life support system that the Detroit auto industry was surviving on, Republicans wanted to pull the plug. One man who is now seeking the Republican nomination for president of the United States said, ‘We should kiss the automobile industry goodbye,’” Reid said, without naming Romney.
“He called the death of American auto manufacturers ‘virtually guaranteed,’ another direct quote. And so he argued we should just let Detroit go bankrupt,” he added. “But he wasn’t alone. Republicans in this chamber agreed, many of them agreed, Democrats weren’t willing to give up on American manufacturing” and manufacturing jobs.
Voters in Michigan head to the polls today, carrying the fate of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney’s presidential bid in their hands. Win Michigan and, as expected, Arizona, and Romney almost certainly reasserts himself as the clear frontrunner in the Republican race. Lose Michigan and the calls for Romney to reconsider his candidacy will begins. It’s that simple.
Turn-out in today’s presidential primary election looks to be about the same or less than it was four years ago, according to a sampling of clerks in key precincts the Free Press is using to analyze the vote.
“The absentee voter ballot requests are pretty much the same as last time,” said Farmington Hills City Clerk Pam Smith. “We’re right on par with that and we’re planning for that kind of turnout.”
Smith said there were no reported problems at precincts this morning and she expected to get updates later in the day on how many people voted in person.
Rockwall Texas Doctor Charged In Biggest U.S. Healthcare Fraud Ever – A North Texas doctor has been arrested and charged in what’s being described as the largest healthcare fraud case in U.S. history.Between January, 2006 and November of last year, Dr. Jacques Roy is accused of cheating Medicare and Medicaid, and ultimately taxpayers, nearly $380 million dollars.Top U.S. Justice department officials have flown to Dallas Tuesday to make the announcement along with the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas, and the Special Agent in charge of the Dallas FBI, Robert Casey.
Santorum on top in second straight Ohio poll – For the second straight day, a new survey indicates Rick Santorum leading Mitt Romney in Ohio.With one week to go until the Buckeye State’s Republican presidential primary, Santorum has an 11-point lead over Romney, according to the latest Ohio Poll.
VA-Sen Poll: Allen leads Kaine in potential US Senate race – Republican George Allen has opened an eight-point lead (45%-37%) on Democrat Tim Kaine in a likely November matchup for the U.S. Senate seat from Virginia according to The Roanoke College Poll. Virginians are somewhat more positive about the situation in the country, but they are not enamored with any of the Republican Presidential candidates. In potential Presidential election scenarios, President Obama leads all Republican candidates except Mitt Romney, with whom he is statistically tied.The Roanoke College Poll interviewed 607 residents of Virginia between February 13 and February 26. The Poll has a margin of error of +4 percent. Another Roanoke College Poll of likely voters in the March 6 “Super Tuesday” Virginia Republican primary will be released later this week.
Santorum robocall makes appeal to Michigan’s Democrats for votes – GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum hopes Michigan Democrats can help him earn a victory in Tuesday’s primary.That’s right. The former Pennsylvania senator’s campaign paid for a robocall asking Democrats to vote for him in Tuesday’s primary.Recent polls show chief rival and Michigan native Mitt Romney and Santorum virtually even heading into the primary.”We know that if we can get a Reagan Democrat in the primary, we can get them in the fall,” said Hogan Gidley, communications director for Santorum. He confirmed the campaign paid for the call.
Political observers say the move is just another sign of how close the GOP race is — and a “logical ploy.”
As Santorum has done during numerous Michigan visits the past two weeks, the call attacked Romney’s stance on the auto bailouts, saying the former Massachusetts governor’s opposition “was a slap in the face” to Michigan workers, according to audio obtained by online political news outlet Talking Points Memo.
Santorum also opposed the auto bailout, but said his consistent stance against all bailouts, including the Wall Street bailout, sets him above Romney.
Innovate or Legislate – Reihan Salam & Patrick Ruffini – National Review Online – In 2012, a number of institutions that long defined how Americans communicated are teetering near the brink of collapse. Major newspapers in cities across the country have stopped publishing. Strip-mall anchors from Circuit City to Blockbuster to Borders have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The U.S. Postal Service struggles under the weight of crushing pension obligations, as e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, and Skype render it all but obsolete. In politics, traditional modes of wielding power are also being disrupted. One prominent example is the recent battle over the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, in which grassroots activists defeated once-powerful Hollywood lobbyists.What’s toppling these formerly invincible companies and institutions? In almost every case, the proximate cause is the Internet, and the disruption it has wrought on inefficient businesses in every corner of the economy. And so we are now engaged in a war over its future.
Newt Gingrich’s super PAC receives another ‘substantial’ contribution from Sheldon Adelson – An independent group supporting Newt Gingrich has received another “substantial” contribution from billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson and will launch TV ads in seven states this week, a source close to the group confirmed Monday.The source, who requested anonymity to speak freely, did not confirm the amount of the contribution but called it substantial and at least on par with two $5 million donations Adelson and his family have given previously. The group, known as Winning Our Future, will launch TV ads Tuesday in Georgia, Oklahoma, Ohio and Tennessee, with more to come Wednesday in Mississippi, Alabama and Kansas.The cash infusion comes at a critical moment for Gingrich, whose campaign has flagged as conservative rival Rick Santorum’s has flourished. While much of the political world has been trained on Santorum’s battle to beat former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney in Michigan and Arizona, two states that hold their primaries Tuesday, Gingrich has focused on trying to revive his fortunes by winning a series of Southern states next week, on Super Tuesday and beyond.All four of the states where the group will begin advertising Tuesday vote on Super Tuesday; the others follow.