These are my links for February 14th through February 15th:
- How Likely Is a Brokered Convention? – Last week, I wrote that a path to a brokered convention was beginning to emerge in the Republican electorate. I was purposely vague as to how likely such an occurrence is. I called the path “very narrow” and said it is “beginning to emerge,” outlining the various contingencies required. But the truth is, at this point, the entire endeavor is pretty speculative; we won’t really know how viable the path is until after Super Tuesday.
But with polls now showing Rick Santorum running well in Michigan — a key state if he really is going to dominate in the Midwest — the topic is worth revisiting. Because if Santorum can win Michigan and Mitt Romney can take Arizona without knocking Newt Gingrich into irrelevance, then a brokered convention becomes much more likely.
- Department of Home-Lunch Security – By Mark Steyn – The home-made lunch having been ruled illegal by officials*, the preschooler was given a federally-approved lunch, for which her mother has been sent a bill. The girl didn’t care for the substitute lunch, ate only the three chicken nuggets, and left everything else on her tray untouched. It may not have worked out all that nutritious for her, but at least it’s compliant with DCDEE/DHHS/USDA paperwork, and that’s what matters.
- The GOP’s emerging Bob Dole problem – A flood of new data points to one clear conclusion: At least for now, President Obama and his Republican opponents are heading in opposite directions.
A CBS News/New York Times poll released last night puts Obama’s approval rating at 50 percent — his best performance in that survey since the spring of 2010 (not counting last May’s brief bin Laden bounce). The poll also shows Obama enjoying his best score since the summer of ’10 on his handling of the economy and his best score since at least late 2009 (when the question was first asked) on job creation, and finds voters voters more optimistic than they’ve been in nearly two years on the overall direction of the economy.
- Why Republicans Don’t Trust Romney – Why can’t Mitt Romney make the sale to conservatives? And why is Rick Santorum, the ultimate long shot at the start of this race, now in a position to be a viable alternative?
Mitt Romney used the word conservative and conservatism more than two dozen times, according to the Washington Post’s Dan Balz , in his speech last week at the CPAC convention. That rhetoric is quite different from ten years ago when he was running for Governor of Massachusetts.
He stated during that campaign that he was “not a partisan Republican” but rather a “moderate” with “progressive” views.”
- Michael Boskin: Washington’s Knack for Picking Losers – WSJ.com –
- Rivkin and Whelan: Birth-Control Mandate—Unconstitutional and Illegal – WSJ.com –
- Romney Surrogate Attacks Santorum for Voting the Same Way He Did – Mitt Romney’s campaign is now targeting GOP rival Rick Santorum as a big-spending Washington insider. On a conference call Tuesday afternoon, former Missouri senator and Romney surrogate Jim Talent criticized Santorum’s support for expanding government spending, including his vote for the Medicare Part D in 2003—a program for which Talent himself voted.
“Senator Santorum is running in Missouri as a trusted and comprehensive conservative,” Talent said. “He certainly has been outspoken on social issues, and we honor his record in that regard, but when you get outside those issues into fiscal, spending, regulatory issues, his record shows that he’s been in the liberal wing of the Republican party.”
Talent continued, pointing to a few votes that show Santorum’s “liberal” spending record. “I want to note that Senator Santorum voted for No Child Left Behind, which was a big expansion of federal power over local education,” he said. “He voted for Medicare Part D, a big expansion of a federal entitlement.”
- President 2012 Video: Romney Super PAC Hits Rick Santorum in Michigan, Arizona and Ohio | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012 Video: Romney Super PAC Hits Rick Santorum in Michigan, Arizona and Ohio
- Energy Conversion Devices files for bankruptcy as solar energy lags – In the latest setback for the solar energy industry, Auburn Hills-based Energy Conversion Devices said today that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and intends to sell its assets, including its main subsidiary United Solar Ovonic.
“We firmly believe there is a strong and sustainable commercial market for Uni-Solar products,” Julian Hawkins, ECD’s CEO and president, said in a statement. “However our current capital structure and legacy costs are preventing USO from making the investments necessary for the future of the business without restructuring through the bankruptcy process.”
The maker of solar roofing materials, which will continue to operate, employs 750 workers, 60% of them in Michigan. They will remain active employees during the sales process though some have been furloughed, said company spokesman Michael Schostak.
ECD also said it has sold its Ovonic Battery Co. to BASF Corp. for $58 million in cash before transaction fees and other factors. The battery subsidiary’s 35 employees have been hired by BASF.
- Cold Hands During Runs | Ask the Sports Doc – RT @runnersworld: What to do about cold hands during a run: #runningtips
- Nuking our Nukes – Obama and Cutting America’s Nuclear Forces – President Obama has ordered the Pentagon to consider cutting U.S. strategic nuclear forces to as low as 300 deployed warheads—below the number believed to be in China’s arsenal and far fewer than current Russian strategic warhead stocks.
Pentagon and military planners were asked to develop three force levels for the U.S. arsenal of deployed strategic nuclear warheads: a force of 1,100 to 1,000 warheads; a second scenario of between 700 and 800 warheads; and the lowest level of between 300 and 400 warheads.
A congressional official said no president in the past ever told the Pentagon to conduct a review based on specific numbers of warheads.
“In the past, the way it worked was, ‘tell me what the world is like and then tell me what the force should be,’” the official said. “That is not happening in this review.”
The plan for a radical cut in warheads is contained in a review of nuclear weapons ordered by the president in an August directive. The review called the Nuclear Posture Review Implementation Study is nearing completion and could be presented to the president as early as next month.
- US weighing steep nuclear arms cuts – The Obama administration is weighing options for sharp new cuts to the U.S. nuclear force, including a reduction of up to 80 percent in the number of deployed weapons, The Associated Press has learned.
Even the most modest option now under consideration would be an historic and politically bold disarmament step in a presidential election year, although the plan is in line with President Barack Obama’s 2009 pledge to pursue the elimination of nuclear weapons.
- Politico reporter Ben Smith withheld information about liberal Media Matters For America – About a year ago, the organization Media Matters For America gave Politico reporter Ben Smith a 2010 planning memo for a profile he was writing on the liberal advocacy group.
But Smith curiously withheld key parts of the 89-page document when he published his story, “Media Matters’ war against Fox,” in March 2011.
The Daily Caller became aware of this after obtaining the same document while reporting the series “Inside Media Matters,” which debuted here late Sunday night.
Smith made no mention of Media Matters targeting organizations other than Fox News, such as the libertarian Cato Institute and the conservative Heritage Foundation. Nor does he reveal that, according to the memo, Media Matters was intent on researching Republican political figures like Republican former U.S. Senate candidate Carly Fiorina and Republican Virginia Rep. Eric Cantor, and the prominent libertarian political donor Peter Thiel.
“An opposition research team will serve to hold Thiel and others like him accountable,” the memo states. Smith made no mention of such efforts in his story.
He also failed to disclose Media Matters’ interest in marginalizing political news websites including Newsmax and Andrew Breitbart’s Big Government, saying only that the organization had narrowed its focus to “Fox and a handful of conservative websites.”
- Peggy Noonan Schools Mika Brzezinski on Obama Contraception Mandate During ‘Morning Joe’ Panel Discussion | Video | TheBlaze.com – Peggy Noonan Schools Mika Brzezinski on Obama ‘Mischievously’ Misinforming Public About Contraceptives
- Fox News ‘course correction’ rankles some – Keach Hagey – POLITICO.com – Fox News ‘course correction’ rankles some
- President 2012 GOP Poll Watch: Is Mitt Romney Electable? | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012 GOP Poll Watch: Is Mitt Romney Electable?
- Poll Watch: 46 Per Cent of Catholics Approve of President Obama | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Poll Watch: 46 Per Cent of Catholics Approve of President Obama
- Poll Watch: 59 Per Cent of Catholics Disapprove of President Obama | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – Poll Watch: 59 Per Cent of Catholics Disapprove of President Obama
- Flap’s Dentistry Blog: California Legislature Pushes Dentistry For All Socialism – California Legislature Pushes Dentistry For All Socialism
- (404) http://t.co/x9C – RT @ppppolls: Gingrich would be the biggest GOP general election disaster trailing Obama 52-40, incl. 19 pts with indys: …
- AD-38: Rep Buck McKeon’s Staff Says Memo Leak Was a Computer HACK » Flap’s California Blog – AD-38: Rep Buck McKeon’s Staff Says Memo Leak Was a Computer HACK
- Flap’s California Morning Collection: February 14, 2012 » Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Morning Collection: February 14, 2012
- The Morning Flap: February 14, 2012 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Morning Flap: February 14, 2012
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