Barack Obama

President 2012: Congressional Supercommittees – Deal or No Deal?

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President Obama does the best by setting up the GOP as a foil with a NO DEAL.

The 12 members of the congressional supercommittee aren’t isolated and alone, working like monks, as they pursue at least a $1.2 trillion deficit reduction plan. The six Republicans met at least twice last week with House speaker John Boehner and Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell. The week before, three Democrats and three Republicans had dinner at Hunan Dynasty on Capitol Hill, prompting fears among their absent colleagues that a secret deal was being concocted.

The official deadline for the supercommittee is November 23. To meet it, agreement would have to be reached 10 days earlier to give the Congressional Budget Office time to score the plan and the House and Senate 48 hours before voting on it, with no amendments or filibusters allowed.

There appear to be two possible outlines of a plan taking shape, one good, one terrible. To attract the GOP Six, the good plan would be built around tax reform, with either income or corporate tax rates (or both) reduced or frozen, while corporate welfare was scraped from the tax code—loopholes, breaks, and special writeoffs, possibly including those Obama has denounced for corporate jet owners and oil companies. Would any Democrats go along? Senators Max Baucus and John Kerry, maybe. And if Senate majority leader Harry Reid blessed the deal, Patty Murray, his surrogate on the panel, probably would. This is Deal A.

Deal B is what might happen should Deal A fall by the wayside. More conventional, it would consist of some formula of tax hikes and spending cuts. Democrats want “balance,” a 50-50 split. Conservatives are worried three Republicans on the supercommittee—House members Dave Camp and Fred Upton and Senator Rob Portman—might accept Deal B as a last resort. Not likely, unless Boehner and McConnell anointed the deal.

It is too easy for President Obama to blame a “Do Nothing” Congress. Country be damned, Obama wants to be re-elected and Harry Reid will enable him – as long as he looks like he has a chance of winning.

The Democrats will insist on tax rate increases and there will be an automatic trigger of spending cuts – defense and non-defense.

In the meantime, Obama will hit the campaign trail blaming the Republicans for refusing to tax the rich, playing the class warfare card.

Some governance……

Pinboard Links

The Afternoon Flap: November 7, 2011

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These are my links for November 7th from 09:06 to 12:43:

  • Big labor favor: DNC may replace local workers with out-of-state union labor for convention – Charlotte, N.C. Mayor Anthony Foxx, a Democrat with close ties to President Barack Obama, is taking political heat as several reports show he plans to replace local workers with out-of-state union workers during the Democratic National Convention next year.

    Foxx’s mayoral Republican challenger, Scott Stone, has been a vocal opponent of Foxx’s purportedly anti-local business policies. Stone recently held a press conference asking Foxx to pledge he wouldn’t give DNC jobs to out-of-state unions, but Foxx refused to commit.

    After the press conference, RedState’s Ben Howe discovered that the DNC was “discriminating against” a local large format sign printing company because it does not employ union labor. Since then, more reports of “discrimination” against non-union shops in Charlotte have surfaced.

    The Ritz Carlton hotel in Charlotte, where the president is reportedly staying during the DNC next year, plans to temporarily lay off its employees, reports. spoke with a Ritz Carlton non-union employee who confirmed “they had been told they would be laid off during the convention.”

    The Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) disputes the report. “The claim is totally fabricated and false,” said DNCC spokesperson Kristie Greco. “There is no Democratic Convention-related obligation to cause the furlough of hotel workers convention week.”*

    The local newspaper of record, the Charlotte Observer, ran a front page story this weekend also bashing the Democratic Party for its lack of transparency in planning the DNC convention.

  • Accuser Details Lewd Behavior by Cain – Attorney Says Corroborates Claim – In an interview after Ms. Bialek’s news conference, Joel P. Bennett, a lawyer for one of Mr. Cain’s anonymous accusers, said that Ms. Bialek’s claims were “very similar” in nature to the incident that occurred between his client and Mr. Cain.

    His client has not said whether Mr. Cain touched her physically. In a statement Friday on her behalf, Mr. Bennett alleged that Mr. Cain had engaged in a “series of inappropriate behaviors and unwanted advances” toward his client.

    “It corroborates the claim,” Mr. Bennett said of Ms. Bialek’s allegation. Asked whether that meant that Mr. Cain had physically touched his client inappropriately, Mr. Bennett said “I can’t get more specific” but added that “I can say it is corroborating.”

    Mr. Bennett also said that a woman named Sharon from Chicago left a message on his answering machine over the weekend saying that she, too, had been the subject of harassment at the hands of Mr. Cain. Mr. Bennett said he called her back to suggest that he could arrange for her to come forward confidentially, but that she said that she would think about it.

    After watching the news conference, Mr. Bennett said: “I guess she got over her shyness.”

    Ms. Bialek is the first woman to come forward publicly with such allegations. In her statement to the press, Ms. Bialek said that she had been fired at the association after about a year working for the group’s educational foundation in its Chicago office. She said she sought Mr. Cain’s help to find other employment during a trip to Washington about a month after he left the group.

    During that trip, she said Mr. Cain had secretly upgraded her hotel room before drinks and dinner that the two had to discuss possible future employment. She said that after dinner, he put his hand on her leg and ran it under her skirt and pulled her head toward his crotch.

  • BREAKING: Cain accuser says candidate groped her in 1997 – A woman who claimed Herman Cain sexually assaulted her in 1997 said Monday she hoped the Republican presidential candidate would come clean about other allegations of sexual misconduct.

    Sharon Bialek said Cain reached under her skirt and pressed her head toward his crotch when Bialek was visiting Cain in Washington to get job hunting advice after she had been “terminated” from the National Restaurant Association.

    Bialek said that when she protested, Cain asked, “You want a job, right?”

    Bialek worked at the educational foundation of the National Restaurant Association beginning from 1996 to 1997, when she said her superiors released her from her position, citing poor fundraising numbers.

    Bialek said she was already acquainted with Cain after meeting him at NRA conferences, and visited him in Washington in July 1997 to see if he could help her regain her position or find another position within the organization.

    When Bialek and Cain were returning from dinner, Bialek said Cain made inappropriate advances in a parked car.

    “He put his hand on my leg, under my skirt, and reached for my genitals,” Bialek said. “He also grabbed my head and pushed it toward his crotch.”

    Cain’s campaign denied Bialek’s allegations in a statement before the press conference began.

    “Just as the country finally begins to refocus on our crippling $15 trillion national debt and the unacceptably high unemployment rate, now activist celebrity lawyer Gloria Allred is bringing forth more false accusations against the character of Republican front-runner Herman Cain,” the statement read.

    “All allegations of harassment against Mr. Cain are completely false. Mr. Cain has never harassed anyone. Fortunately the American people will not allow Mr. Cain’s bold “9-9-9 Plan”, clear foreign policy vision and plans for energy independence to be overshadowed by these bogus attacks.”

  • Woman says Cain put hand up her skirt – Sharon Bialek alleged at a news conference today that Herman Cain reached under her skirt in 1997 as she sought help in finding a job.

    The Chicago-area mother, described by her lawyer as a registered Republican, urged the GOP presidential candidate to “come clean” and admit how he was “inappropriate” with her and other women.

    Bialek’s story was immediately denied by the Cain campaign, which sent out a news release as the woman spoke publicly at a New York City news conference with her lawyer, noted defense attorney Gloria Allred, by her side.

    The stories of three other women have been reported by Politico and the Associated Press.

    “All allegations of harassment against Mr. Cain are completely false,” the Cain campaign statement said. “Mr. Cain has never harassed anyone.”

    The disclosure by Bialek brought a shocking twist to the allegations of sexual misconduct by Cain, which date back to his time as head of the National Restaurant Association from 1996-1999.

    Cain’s campaign has been roiled for more than a week by the allegations. He is tied with Mitt Romney for the GOP presidential nomination in a new USA TODAY/Gallup Poll. But a majority of Republicans say they wouldn’t vote for a candidate proved to have sexually harassed employees.

  • President 2012: How Does the Electoral College Look – One Year Out? | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – President 2012: How Does the Electoral College Look – One Year Out? #tcot #catcot
  • The Morning Flap: November 7, 2011 | Flap’s Blog – FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog – The Morning Flap: November 7, 2011 #tcot #catcot
  • Taxpayers Take On L.A. County’s Unconstitutional Grocery Bag Tax | FlashReport – Taxpayers Take On L.A. County’s Unconstitutional Grocery Bag Tax
  • Flap’s California Morning Collection: November 7, 2011 » Flap’s California Blog – Flap’s California Morning Collection: November 7, 2011

President 2012 GOP Poll Watch: Romney 21% Vs. Cain 21% Vs. Gingrich 12% Vs. Perry 11%

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According to the latest Gallup Poll.
Herman Cain now ties Mitt Romney as the leader for the GOP presidential nomination in USA Today/Gallup polling on Republican preferences conducted Nov. 2-6. Each receives 21% support from Republicans nationwide. Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry follow, with 12% and 11% support, respectively.

Gallup’s previous measure of Republicans’ preferences, conducted Oct. 3-7, also showed Romney and Cain essentially tied, with Romney at 20% support and Cain at 18%. At that point, Perry was in second place with 15%, followed by Ron Paul at 8% and Gingrich at 7%.

Well, this poll was taken before today’s latest revelation about another woman accusing Cain of inappropriate behavior.

Note, the rise of Newt Gingrich in this poll. The former Speaker may very well become the alternative to Mitt Romney, but whether he can go toe to toe with Romney remains to be seen.

Republicans’ latest preferences for their party’s nomination highlight Romney’s inability to build on his support in recent months. Romney’s 21% preference score is now no better in the trial heat poll than it was in May, despite the rise and then fall in Republican support for Perry and Michelle Bachmann, the collapse in support for Gingrich earlier this year, and the latest controversy surrounding Cain.

Meanwhile, Gingrich has seen a modest renaissance of sorts in his positioning. He received as high as 12% support earlier in the year, but fell to as low as 4% of Republicans’ preferences, in Gallup’s August update. Now, he’s back to 12%, and essentially ties Perry for second place behind the two front-runners. Gallup’s Positive Intensity Scores, updated each Tuesday, also show that Gingrich’s image has been improving.