U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., listens to a question during a town hall, Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013, in Sun Lakes, Ariz. McCain defended his proposed immigration overhaul to an angry crowd in suburban Arizona in the latest sign that this border state will play a prominent role in the national immigration reform debate AP (Photo/Matt York)
McCain defends immigration plan to angry residents – During a heated town hall gathering in the Phoenix suburb of Sun Lakes, McCain said the border near Yuma is largely secure, but he said smugglers are using the border near Tucson to pump drugs into Phoenix. He said immigration reform should be contingent on better border security that must rely largely on technology able to detect border crossings.McCain said a tamper-proof Social Security card would help combat identity fraud, and noted any path to citizenship must require immigrants to learn English, cover back taxes and pay fines for breaking immigration laws.”There are 11 million people living here illegally,” he said. “We are not going to get enough buses to deport them.”
Some audience members shouted out their disapproval.
One man yelled that only guns would discourage illegal immigration. Another man complained that illegal immigrants should never be able to become citizens or vote. A third man said illegal immigrants were illiterate invaders who wanted free government benefits.
Gingrich-less, super PAC is back – The super PAC that raised nearly $24 million to power Newt Gingrich into the White House is rebranding itself as a booster of the conservative ground game and, possibly, 2014 GOP Senate candidates.Only this time around, Winning Our Future won’t have the key piece of its brand — Gingrich, who isn’t at all involved in the super PAC.
House Democrats Cash In With Online Fundraising Program – It’s usually easier to bring in big bucks when your party holds the speaker’s gavel. But last cycle, House Democrats crushed their competitors thanks to a dramatic spike in online fundraising.In the 2010 cycle, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee raised $14.6 million online; in 2012 it took in $49.3 million — a total representing one-third of its revenue. In the previous two cycles, online donations accounted for 5 percent to 9 percent of the DCCC’s total haul, according to DCCC fundraising figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call.The online boom more than leveled the fundraising playing field for the minority party, allowing the campaign arm to raise $28 million more than its GOP counterparts last cycle.
Marco Rubio: The Electable Conservative? – Some commentators have expressed surprise upon learning about the very conservative voting record of Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, who delivered the Republican response to the State of the Union address last week.Since winning his Senate seat, Mr. Rubio has generally sided with other Republicans as part of a party that has steadily grown more conservative over the last three decades. (Mr. Rubio’s recent support for immigration reform is more of an exception than his usual rule of sticking to the party line.)Being reliably conservative, however, is hardly a liability for someone who might hope to win the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. Indeed, one reason to watch Mr. Rubio carefully is that, among the candidates who will be deemed reliably conservative by Republican voters and insiders, he may stand the best chance of maintaining a reasonably good image with general election voters.
How does Mr. Rubio’s conservatism compare to the other men and women who might seek the Republican nomination in 2016 — and to other candidates, like Mitt Romney, that the G.O.P. has nominated recently?
These are my links for October 9th through October 11th:
Biden: ‘You Ever See Me Rope-a-Dope?’– Joe Biden, on his way to tonight’s vice presidential debate in Kentucky, asks the press, “You ever see me rope-a-dope?”From the pool report:Vice President Biden arrived at about 10:50 a.m. at New Castle Airport. He climbed out of a gray SUV, greeted some military (see below) and then walked toward the press gathered near the wing.Asked about tonight’s debate he said, “Looking forward to it.”
Asked about his strategy, whether it was rope-a-dope, he responded:
“You ever see me rope-a-dope?”
A bunch of Bidens are joining the VP, including: sons Hunter and Beau, daughter Ashley, sister Valerie. Debate partner Rep. Chris Van Hollen and former Sen. Ted Kaufman are on board, as is Shaleigh Murray, who played moderator Martha Raddatz in debate practice.
GOP Turnout Effort Tests Obama Campaign’s Prowess– Republicans are narrowing Democrats’ organizational advantage in critical swing states, but the latter say they are on track to improve upon President Obama’s 2008 early-vote count.Now that the election has moved full-throttle into get-out-the-vote mode, both campaigns are tracking the daily tabulation of absentee ballots requested in key battlegrounds along with the number of early votes already cast. In half of the most critical swing states — Colorado, Florida and North Carolina — Republicans have requested more absentee ballots than have their counterparts. And in Nevada, the two sides are nearly even.
ObamaCare: Health Care Direction Awaits Verdict of Presidential Race– Joyce Beck, who runs a small hospital and network of medical clinics in rural Nebraska, is reluctant to plan for the future until voters decide between President Obama and Mitt Romney. The candidates’ sharply divergent proposals for Medicare, Medicaid and coverage of the uninsured have created too much uncertainty, she explained.“We are all on hold, waiting to see what the election brings,” said Ms. Beck, chief executive of Thayer County Health Services in Hebron, Neb.When Americans go to the polls next month, they will cast a vote not just for president but for one of two profoundly different visions for the future of the country’s health care system. With an Obama victory on Nov. 6, the president’s signature health care law — including the contentious requirement that most Americans obtain health insurance or pay a tax penalty — will almost certainly come into full force, becoming the largest expansion of the safety net since President Lyndon B. Johnson pushed through his Great Society programs almost half a century ago.If Mr. Romney wins and Republicans capture the Senate, much of the law could be repealed — or its financing cut back — and the president’s goal of achieving near-universal coverage could take a back seat to Mr. Romney’s top priority, controlling medical costs.
Given the starkness of the choice, historians and policy makers believe this election could be the most significant referendum on a piece of social legislation since 1936, when the Republican Alf M. Landon ran against Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal programs. (Nearly eight decades have passed, but the debate sounds strikingly familiar: Landon described the Social Security Act, passed in 1935, as “the largest tax bill in history” and called for its repeal.)
California gas prices are a warning– California’s record gasoline prices and long service station lines are a warning to all of us about what green energy can do to our pocketbooks.On Monday, California gasoline cost $4.67 per gallon, compared with the $3.81 U.S. average. California’s environmental standards are the most stringent in the country, and Californians are paying the price.The price spike started with an August fire in Chevron’s Richmond refinery. Then, two other refineries, operated by Tesoro and Exxon Mobil, went down for maintenance. Because California requires different blends of gasoline from other states, and pipelines across the Rockies are limited, gasoline can’t be shipped in from elsewhere.On Sunday, in an attempt to lower gasoline prices, Gov. Jerry Brown suspended the environmental regulations that kept California prices above those in the rest of the United States.
Rove: The Dividends of Romney’s Debate Victory– How big an impact did Mitt Romney’s performance in last week’s debate have? Huge. Mr. Romney not only won the night, he changed the arc of the election—and perhaps its outcome. Surveys have him leading the RealClearPolitics average of polls for the first time since securing the GOP nomination in mid-April.Prior to Oct. 3, Mr. Romney trailed President Barack Obama by an average of 3.1 points in national polls tallied by RealClearPolitics. Since the debate, Mr. Romney now leads Mr. Obama in the RCP average by a point, 48.2% to 47.2%, and the bounce is likely to grow. By comparison, Sen. John Kerry was widely seen to have bested President George W. Bush in the first 2004 debate (held on Sept. 30 of that year), but he never led in the RCP average in October.In seven of the past nine presidential debate series, the challenger has gained more in the polls than the incumbent (or the candidate of the party in power). The first debate generally frames the series and establishes whether the bounce will be large or modest. Mr. Romney’s bounce is significant.
Greek Unemployment Rises Above 25 per cent– The unemployment rate in Greece rose to 25.1 percent in July, from 24.8 percent the month before, as the financial crisis continued to destroy jobs.Greece’s statistical authority says in a statement Thursday that 1.26 million Greeks were jobless in July, with more than 1,000 jobs lost every day over the past year.In the worst-affected 15-24 age group, unemployment was 54.2 percent.In July 2008, a year before Greece’s acute financial crisis broke, there were only about 364,000 registered unemployed.
Greece is surviving on international bailout loans, granted on condition of harsh austerity measures to curtail the country’s large budget deficits. The economy is set to enter a sixth year of recession in 2013.
CBS 5 Poll: Romney Gains 8 Points On Faltering Obama In California– The effects of President Barack Obama’s falter in the first debate with Mitt Romney are not just being felt in battleground states, according to KPIX-TV CBS 5?s latest tracking poll of California which shows Romney slicing eight points off Obama’s lead.Obama had led by 22 points in the CBS 5 tracking poll released four weeks ago. Obama now leads by only 14 points, an 8-point improvement for Romney. At the same time, the poll found U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s support for her re-election bid remained largely unchanged, month-on-month, suggesting that the erosion in Democratic support is not across-the-board, but contained to Obama. Unclear is whether the Obama erosion is fleeting or long-lasting.
11 Of Lance Armstrong’s Teammates Testified Against Him To The USADA– The USADA is releasing a full report of evidence that Lance Armstrong was doping during his cycling career.Eleven of Armstrong’s former teammates testified against the seven-time Tour de France winner saying he used performance enhancing drugs.The teammates who testified against Armstrong were: Frankie Andreu, Michael Barry, Tom Danielson, Tyler Hamilton, George Hincapie, Floyd Landis, Levi Leipheimer, Stephen Swart, Christian Vande Velde, Jonathan Vaughters, and David Zabriskie.
Lawyer who filed complaint has ties to multiple anti-ALEC groups– The lawyer who filed an IRS whistleblower complaint against the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) on behalf of a shadowy organization known as “Clergy Voice” has ties to Common Cause, the liberal government watchdog group and renowned ALEC foe.Marcus Owens, former director of the Exempt Organizations Division of the IRS from 1990 to 2000, filed a whistleblower complaint in July against ALEC, alleging the group was violating IRS tax law.“ALEC has deliberately and repeatedly failed to comply with some of the most fundamental federal tax requirements applicable to public charities,” Owens wrote in his complaint against the influential free-market group. “The information in this submission also suggests, quite strongly, that the conduct of ALEC and certain of its representatives violates other civil and criminal tax laws and may violate other federal and state criminal statutes as well.”As reported by the Free Beacon, the “grassroots” movement against ALEC is a well-coordinated campaign orchestrated by well-funded and often secretive progressive groups.
Barack Obama, VP debate moderator wedding guest– President Barack Obama was a guest at the 1991 wedding of ABC senior foreign correspondent and vice presidential debate moderator Martha Raddatz, The Daily Caller has learned. Obama and groom Julius Genachowski, whom Obama would later tap to head the Federal Communications Commission, were Harvard Law School classmates at the time and members of the Harvard Law Review.After TheDC made preliminary inquiries Monday to confirm Obama’s attendance at the wedding, ABC leaked a pre-emptive statement to liberal-leaning news outlets including Politico and The Daily Beast Tuesday, revealing what may have been internal network pressure felt just days before Raddatz was scheduled to moderate the one and only vice-presidential debate Thursday night.
Jack Welch: I Was Right About That Strange Jobs Report– Imagine a country where challenging the ruling authorities—questioning, say, a piece of data released by central headquarters—would result in mobs of administration sympathizers claiming you should feel “embarrassed” and labeling you a fool, or worse.Soviet Russia perhaps? Communist China? Nope, that would be the United States right now, when a person (like me, for instance) suggests that a certain government datum (like the September unemployment rate of 7.8%) doesn’t make sense.Unfortunately for those who would like me to pipe down, the 7.8% unemployment figure released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) last week is downright implausible. And that’s why I made a stink about it.Before I explain why the number is questionable, though, a few words about where I’m coming from. Contrary to some of the sound-and-fury last week, I do not work for the Mitt Romney campaign. I am definitely not a surrogate. My wife, Suzy, is not associated with the campaign, either. She worked at Bain Consulting (not Bain Capital) right after business school, in 1988 and 1989, and had no contact with Mr. Romney.
The Obama campaign and its supporters, including bigwigs like David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs, along with several cable TV anchors, would like you to believe that BLS data are handled like the gold in Fort Knox, with gun-carrying guards watching their every move, and highly trained, white-gloved super-agents counting and recounting hourly.
Let’s get real. The unemployment data reported each month are gathered over a one-week period by census workers, by phone in 70% of the cases, and the rest through home visits. In sum, they try to contact 60,000 households, asking a list of questions and recording the responses.
State Dept reveals new details of Benghazi attack– All was quiet outside the U.S. Consulate as evening fell on Benghazi and President Barack Obama’s envoy to Libya was retiring after a day of diplomatic meetings.There was no indication of the harrowing events that night would bring: assailants storming the compound and setting its buildings aflame, American security agents taking fire across more than a mile of the city, the ambassador and three employees killed and others forced into a daring car escape against traffic.Senior State Department officials on Tuesday revealed for the first time certain details of last month’s tragedy in the former Libyan rebel stronghold, such as the efforts of a quick reaction force that rushed onto the scene and led the evacuation in a fierce gun battle that continued into the streets. The briefing was provided a day before department officials were to testify to a House committee about the most serious attack on a U.S. diplomatic installation since al-Qaida bombed the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania 14 years ago.The account answers some questions and leaves others unanswered. Chief among them is why for several days the Obama administration said the assault stemmed from a protest against an American-made Internet video ridiculing Islam, and whether the consulate had adequate security.
State Department: No video protest at the Benghazi consulate– Prior to the attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi late in the evening on Sept. 11, there was no protest outside the compound, a senior State Department official confirmed today, contradicting initial administration statements suggesting that the attack was an opportunistic reaction to unrest caused by an anti-Islam video.In a conference call with reporters Tuesday, two senior State Department officials gave a detailed accounting of the events that lead to the death of Amb. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. The officials said that prior to the massive attack on the Benghazi compound by dozens of militants carrying heavy weaponry, there was no unrest outside the walls of the compound and no protest that anyone inside the compound was aware of.
The liberal media loved Obama to death – It was in Denver one week ago that the long-running romance between Barack Obama and the national press — aka the “Slobbering Love Affair,” as Bernard Goldberg put it — hit the wall. The motel bill, unpaid these many long months and ages, at long last came due.
It had been the real thing, not a commonplace fling with your generic Democrat, but the love of a lifetime, the genuine article, the sum of all dreams: He was not just a Democrat, he was also a liberal. He was not just a liberal, he also biracial, also multinational; also hip, cool, and clever. He was themselves as they wanted to be. Like them, he was gifted at writing and talking (and, as it turned out, not much beyond that), like them, he stood up for Metro America; like them, he viewed the people outside it with a not-very-measured disdain. “I divide people into people who talk like us and people who don’t talk like us,” said David Brooks, speaking for all of them. “You could see him as a New Republic writer … he’s more talented than anyone in my lifetime … he IS pretty dazzling when he walks into a room.”Dazzled indeed, they turned on their old flames, Bill and Hillary Clinton. They dumped John McCain, with whom they had flirted; and when Romney appeared — rich, square, and looking like Dad in a mid-50s sitcom — it was clear the long knives would be out.
The LEFT melts down over Obama Debate Performance– Let me suggest something that many conservatives realized after the debate: Obama did not do that badly. For Obama. He was the same listless, droning, exhausted-of-ideas scold we have seen for at least two years now (and maybe three).He was Obama. This is what he is. He is not quick-witted. He is not, as I think I saw Mickey Kaus note, a wonk. He has never been a wonk, a detailed-policy guy.He is a guy who speaks vacuously of hopes and dreams and change and fairness.He always has been.
The problem, for the liberals, is not Obama. This is what you bought. This is your guy. It wasn’t his A game, but it was something close to his B+ game.
The problem was Romney, who was commanding, fluent, reasonable, articulate, sharp-witted, warm, occasionally funny, full of ideas, full of facts, full of thoughtful, detailed criticisms of Obama policy (who the hell expected him to bring up, as an afterthought, Dodd-Frank’s failure to specify what a “reasonably qualified” mortgage applicant was, and how that chilled lending? Obama sure didn’t!), and, therefore, ultimately, full of qualification for the job and yes, full of gravitas.
That’s the problem.
Not Obama. I repeat: This is who Obama is. He has never been this brilliant intellect and keen policy analysts liberals have, in their BubbleWorld, dreamed him as.
After Debate, Obama Protection Dam Breaks– President Obama might think sagging polls are his biggest post-debate problem. But it’s really people like Buzz Bissinger, Stacey Dash and Bill Maher showing it’s now acceptable in polite society to attack The One.In an eye-opening piece Monday on the Daily Beast, “Friday Night Lights” author and lifelong Democrat Buzz Bissinger announced he was voting for Romney.The tipping point, he wrote, “was last week’s debate in Denver,” which showed Obama out of energy and out of ideas. Obama is “no longer the chosen one. He is just too cool for school in a country desperate for the infectiousness of rejuvenation.”
Angst grows among Obama supporters– First came the nausea. Then came the anxiety.After months of watching Mitt Romney twist in the media glare, a growing number of President Barack Obama’s supporters — though confined for now to a noisy minority of liberals — are peering into the Obama-might-actually-lose abyss for the first time after last week’s disastrous first debate.
NASA – NASATV – RT @NASA on @SpaceX #Dragon capture: “Looks like we’ve tamed the Dragon. We’re happy she’s on-board with us.”
Rep. Issa closes in on Clinton on Libya– Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is setting his sights on his biggest political target yet: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.Issa, the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, is treading more carefully than he did with his investigation of Attorney General Eric Holder and the Fast and Furious gun-tracking program, which led to a House vote placing Holder in contempt.Issa has not called on Clinton to testify at a hearing Wednesday morning meant to investigate security lapses at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.Issa’s staff has also praised Clinton for vowing to cooperate with the investigation of how an attack on the consulate left U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other American diplomats dead.
“After dealing with the Department of Justice’s stonewalling in Operation Fast and Furious, the State Department and Secretary Clinton have been a breath of fresh air,” said Frederick Hill, a spokesman for Issa, in an interview with The Hill. “They pledged their cooperation when we
These are my links for August 3rd through August 10th:
White House Approached Schwarzenegger in 2011– Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is getting back into the movie business with a lineup of six film projects–but at one point, things might have gone a very different way.Mr. Schwarzenegger was approached by White House officials about a cabinet position around the time he left office in January 2011, according to people familiar with the matter.The entreaty to the centrist Republican governor wasn’t completely out of the blue.Mr. Schwarzenegger, who was in office for more than seven years and continues to promote his vision of “post-partisanship,” acknowledged earlier in his career that he’d welcome a cabinet post.
5 Graphs That Show How Crazy It Is to Compare California to Greece– Even though it occupies a special place of disdain for the GOP faithful, California is a pretty dynamic economy by global standards. It’s the home of Hollywood and Silicon Valley. And while the state might play a larger economic role than in other corners of the country, it’s still relatively light compared to Europe’s more bloated government sectors. State spending is last year was roughly 6 percent of its economy, while federal dollars usually make up around 18 percent. In Italy and Greece, Government is about half the economy. In Spain, it’s around 43 percent.So lumping California in with Greece, Italy, and Spain is, in the end, pretty silly. But why am I dwelling on it then? Again, every good joke is supposed to have a kernel of truth. And among a certain set of conservatives, there seems to be a feeling that states are just one extra medicaid payment away from getting savaged by the world’s bond markets. California has its economic problems. But they’re not that bad. Just ask Europe.
Noonan: A Nation That Believes Nothing– When Americans go to Europe they see everything but the taxes. The taxes are terrible. But that’s Europe’s business and they’ll have to figure it out. Yes what happens there has implications for us but still, they’re there and we’re here.What Americans are worried about, take as a warning sign, and are heavily invested in is California—that mythic place where Sutter struck gold, where the movies were invented, where the geniuses of the Internet age planted their flag, built their campuses, changed our world.We care about California. We read every day of the bankruptcies, the reduced city services, the businesses fleeing. California is going down. How amazing is it that this is happening in the middle of a presidential campaign and our candidates aren’t even talking about it?Mitt Romney should speak about the states that work and the states that don’t, why they work and why they don’t, and how we have to take the ways that work and apply them nationally.
Barack Obama can’t talk about these things. You can’t question the blue-state model when your whole campaign promises more blue-state thinking.
But Mr. Romney can talk about it.
Both campaigns are afraid of being serious, of really grappling with the things Americans rightly fear. But there’s no safety in not being serious. It only leaves voters wondering if you’re even capable of seriousness. Letting them wonder that is a mistake.
Homeland Security official claims in suit Secretary Napolitano favored women pals– A veteran US law-enforcement official has filed a blockbuster discrimination lawsuit against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, charging she pushed him aside to make way for a less-qualified woman who’s “enjoyed a long-standing relationship” with the anti-terror chief.The lawsuit, which was first reported yesterday by blogger Debbie Schlussel, identifies the woman as Dora Schriro, who was later appointed by Mayor Bloomberg as commissioner of the city Department of Correction, a post she still holds.The court papers also allege that Suzanne Barr, Napolitano’s chief of staff at Immigration and Customs Enforcement, has engaged in “numerous” acts of “sexually offensive behavior” intended to “humiliate and intimidate male employees.
Janet Napolitano-run Homeland Security treated male staffers like lapdogs, federal discrimination lawsuit charges– Looks like the Department of Homeland Security could be renamed the Department of Hyper Sexuality.A blistering federal discrimination suit accuses agency honcho Janet Napolitano of turning the department into a female-run “frat house” where male staffers were banished to the bathrooms and routinely humiliated.James Hayes Jr., who now is New York’s top Homeland Security cop, claims Napolitano filled top spots in Washington, D.C., with two of her gal pals who were bent on tormenting male employees.The suit identified them as Dora Schriro, who is now running the city Department of Correction, and Suzanne Barr, the chief of staff for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Soon after Schriro and Barr were hired in January 2009, male staffers were treated like lapdogs, Hayes claims.
The Romney Hood Fairy Tale– As he escalates his class war re-election campaign, President Obama has taken to calling Mitt Romney’s economic plan “Robin Hood in reverse” or “Romney Hood.” The charge is that even though Mr. Romney is proposing to cut tax rates for everybody across the board, Mr. Romney will finance this by imposing a tax increase on the middle class. His evidence is a single study by the Tax Policy Center, a liberal think tank that has long opposed cutting income tax rates.The political left always says Daddy Warbucks gets all the tax-cut money. So this is hardly news, except that the media are treating this joint Brookings Institution and Urban Institute analysis as if it’s nonpartisan gospel. In fact, it’s a highly ideological tract based on false assumptions, incomplete data and dishonest analysis. In other words, it is custom made for the Obama campaign.
Obama Immigration-Policy Details Emerge– The Obama administration on Friday revealed details of its sweeping immigration program that could allow almost one million undocumented young people to remain in the country, an initiative that is prompting nonprofit organizations to ramp up efforts to help potential beneficiaries.According to the rules of the program, which was first announced in June, applicant information won’t be shared with immigration enforcement except in cases that involve crimes. Applicants will be disqualified for offenses such as drunk driving, but not for driving without a license.
Facebook prices may alter Calif. budget– Facebook’s disappointing stock performance could punch a hole in the state budget if share prices don’t recover by the end of the year, according to the state’s legislative analyst.State officials, like many investors, assumed the tech company’s stock would fetch at least $35 a share after its initial public offering this year. The officials figured California would reap about $1.9 billion in new revenue over this fiscal year and next, from taxes levied once former and current employees are allowed to exercise stock options or sell shares in November.In all, the state expected that revenue to account for about 1 percent of taxes that California took in over the next two years. But Facebook’s stock has performed far below expectations.
Expanding the Dental Safety Net– This white paper from the Pew Children’s Dental Campaign investigates how the addition of dental therapists to the dental team may expand the capacity of Federally Qualified Health Clinics to treat more children.Recent research from the University of Connecticut suggests that adding dental therapists to Federally Qualified Health Clinics (FQHCs) could significantly expand the availability of care for millions of American children.In particular, by including dental therapists as providers in school-based programs operated by FQHCs, the researchers estimated states could provide access to care for 6.7 million Medicaid-eligible children, nationwide.[i] Moreover, the analysis also suggests that this significant increase in access could be realized for a cost of approximately $1.8 billion — just one half of 1 percent of combined state and federal 2009 Medicaid spending.[ii]While the University of Connecticut study is the first of its kind and further research is needed, these promising, preliminary findings underscore the urgency of such additional analysis and, more broadly, for the expansion of the dental workforce throughout the dental safety-net system. This white paper reviews the study’s findings and provides context from states where allied dental providers and school-based delivery models are already in place. Expanding the Dental Safety Net also offers recommendations for policy makers as well as other stakeholders to help them support the development and systemic integration of allied dental providers to ensure all children can receive the critical dental care they need.
Obama campaign: New York Times poll is ‘biased’– Obama campaign deputy manager Stephanie Cutter dismissed today’s CBS/New York Times poll showing that 67 percent of people believed Obama made his decision on gay marriage for political reasons. Only 24 percent said that Obama did it “mostly because he thinks it is right.”Host Chuck Todd asked Cutter about the poll, admitting that the methodology of the poll was different, because it was a callback poll. “Put those caveats aside thats a lot of people saying that he did this for political reasons,” Todd said, noting that it was a 3-1 margin.”We can’t put the methodology of that poll aside, because the methodology was significantly biased.” Cutter insisted on MSNBC this morning.
Cell Phone Ban Keeps Obama Fundraisers Secret – In the latest attempt to crack down on potentially embarrassing digital leaks from presidential fundraisers, President Barack Obama’s campaign has begun asking donors attending small fundraisers with the president to turn over their cell phones before entering.
Pool reporter David Nakamura of the Washington Post reported that at a $35,800 a head fundraiser at the home of Blackstone COO Hamilton “Tony” James in New York City Monday night, the 60 attendees were asked to place their phones in plastic bags by the door.
An Obama aide called the move it “standard operating procedure,” but veterans of a range of other campaigns said they’d never heard of the practice, which is common in secure White House spaces where there are concerns of espionage, but unknown in contexts in which only political secrets are discussed. The new prevalence of sophisticated audio and recording capacities in mobile devices owned by virtually anyone wealthy enough to write a check to a political campaign, however, has put a new pressure on campaigns concerned with staying on a public message.
The fundraising sessions are one of the last vestige of privacy for the president outside of the White House, and a rare opportunity for top donors to hear relatively unscripted remarks by the most powerful man in the world, and to ask him questions. Obama’s prepared remarks at the events are open press and covered by a small group of reporters, but the “press pool” is escorted out of the room before the Q&A period.
Brace, brace. Dark times ahead as Greece heads for the exit – Mistakenly, they have convinced themselves that it won’t much matter if Greece leaves, and indeed that it might even help resolve the wider crisis to get rid of this persistent thorn in the flesh.
Bring it on, they mutter callously; it will be a lot worse for them than for us. On one level, this is just bravado. It’s an attempt to put as nonchalant a face as possible on the now apparently inevitable. But they also seem to believe in their validity of their own analysis – that they have indeed used the past two years well, and are now fully prepared for a Greek exit.
Believe it if you will. The ineptitude to date of the eurozone’s crisis response strongly suggests a different conclusion – both that the likely contagion from an exit has been hugely underestimated, and that by prompting a wider breakup, thereby tipping Europe into depression, it may end up as bad for everyone else as it is for Greece.
The Greek problem has been consistently misdiagnosed and mismanaged right from the start. First there was the suggestion a year ago from Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy that if Greece didn’t buckle under and agree austerity it might be chucked out. Markets reacted logically by selling bonds in any country that looked vulnerable, thereby making it much harder for all periphery governments to fund themselves.
Jerry Brown vs. Chris Christie– In his January 2011 inaugural address, California Gov. Jerry Brown declared it a “time to honestly assess our financial condition and make the tough choices.” Plainly the choices weren’t tough enough: Mr. Brown has just announced that he faces a state budget deficit of $16 billion—nearly twice the $9.2 billion he predicted in January. In Sacramento Monday, he coupled a new round of spending cuts with a call for some hefty new tax hikes.In his own inaugural address back in January 2010, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie also spoke of making tough choices for the people of his state. For his first full budget, Mr. Christie faced a deficit of $10.7 billion—one-third of projected revenues. Not only did Mr. Christie close that deficit without raising taxes, he is now plumping for a 10% across-the-board tax cut.
One by One, Obama Targets ’08 Coalition for Boost– President Obama is attempting to shore up the 2008 coalition that helped him achieve a decisive victory over John McCain, but he is doing so in a more piecemeal way this time around.As an incumbent, Obama’s method is to target various constituencies — albeit ones that supported him four years ago — and make the sale with this argument: On the issues they care most about, he has advanced specific policies to help them, programs opposed by the Republican Party and its presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney.
The Left Is Getting Clobbered on Twitter– We are in the early stages of the 2012 campaign season, with a lot of battlespace preparation going on. In the skirmishing so far, one perhaps surprising media advantage has become clear: the right is clobbering the left on Twitter.Maybe it’s because Twitter puts a premium on brevity and cleverness. I don’t know. But for some reason, it seems to be a natural medium for conservatives. We saw it when the Hilary Rosen interview (“Ann Romney never worked a day in her life”) prompted a Twitterstorm. We saw it again when #ObamaEatsDogs exploded, and when #Julia blew up in the White House’s face like an exploding cigar. Currently, the White House is promoting #AskMichelle, where loyal Democrats can go to ask the First Lady a question. Only nearly all of the questions have come from conservatives.
Three Different Ways to Look at the 2012 Campaign– Last week, I wrote about the standings in the presidential race and said it looked like a long, hard slog through about a dozen clearly identified target states, much like the contests in 2000 and 2004. Call it the 2000/2004 long, hard slog scenario.But I said there were other possible scenarios. I can think of three.
President Obama’s auto task force pressed General Motors and Chrysler to close scores of dealerships without adequately considering the jobs that would be lost or having a firm idea of the cost savings that would be achieved, an audit of the process has concluded.
Mitt Romney’s mantra: Avoid John McCain’s mistakes– Mitt Romney and his top aides are building a strategy, partly by design and partly because of circumstance, around what they consider John McCain’s disastrously run campaign in 2008.The strategy: whatever McCain did, do the opposite.
Obama Ad To Attack Romney On Bain Years– A new ad critical of Mitt Romney’s years as the leader of a private equity firm is set to air in five battleground states starting on Monday, according to The Associated Press.The ad is part of a larger effort by the Obama campaign to attack one of Romney’s strengths: his business career. In addition to the two-minute ad, a longer six-minute web video can be found on a new interactive website, romneyeconomics.com, that criticizes Romney’s record. The Obama campaign will also hold a press conference call later Monday announcing the effort.The two-minute television ad focuses on the fate of a steel mill in Kansas City, Mo., allowing laid off workers to tell their stories. “They made as much money off of it as they could. And they closed it down,” says Joe Soptic, a steelworker for 30 years, in the ad. Jack Cobb, another worker, adds: “It was like a vampire. They came in and sucked the life out of us.”
The ad will air in Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Colorado.
Six in 10 Say Obama Same-Sex Marriage View Won’t Sway Vote – A majority of Americans, 60%, say President Barack Obama’s newly announced support for same-sex marriage will make no difference to their vote. Twice as many say it will make them less likely to vote for Obama as say more likely, though roughly half of the “less likely” group are Republicans who probably would not support Obama anyway.
These are my links for January 30th through February 1st:
HBO’s Game Change portrays “meltdown” Palin – The latest trailer for HBO’s “Game Change” portrays Sarah Palin as natural disaster mistakenly unleashed by the McCain campaign.”Oh my god what have we done.” Woody Harrelson’s Steve Schmidt says, “I can’t control her anymore.” — “She’s on the verge of a complete nervous breakdown.”
Julianne Moore’s Sarah Palin repeats lines like “You can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska.” and “It’s not my fault, I was not properly prepped.” — “I miss my baby, I miss sleeping with my baby.”
At the end she whispers, “We have to win this thing, I so don’t want to go back to Alaska.”
Ted Olson compares Obama to Nixon, McCarthy – President Obama’s first ad of his reelection campaign didn’t mention David and Charles Koch by name, but everyone knows that they are the “secretive oil billionaires” who “attack President Obama” mentioned in the ad’s opening lines. With so much else going on both domestically and internationally kicking off his reelection campaign with a personal attack on private citizens did seem like an odd choice. But former solicitor general of the United States Ted Olson sees some darker forces involved. He writes in today’s Wall Street Journal:Olson doesn’t mention it, but there is a very simple reason Obama is targeting the Koch’s: he can’t run on his record. With unemployment still higher than when he took office, and the Congressional Budget Office now certifying he will fail to cut the deficit in half as he promised, he has no accomplishments to run on. All he can really do is identify villains and ask his supporters to punish them. That is what Obama’s Buffett Rule is really all about. And that is why he is attacking the Koch’s.
Greek PM seeks backing for reforms key to bailout – Greece’s prime minister is calling the country’s political leaders in the next few days to seek backing for more austerity after the International Monetary Fund warned this was key to securing the new bailout Athens needs to avoid a messy default.With a long-delayed deal with private sector creditors to cut Greece’s debt mountain by 100 billion euros nearly wrapped up, the government is now racing to complete talks on the 130-billion euro ($170.18 billion) bailout by the end of the week.
To do so, Athens must first persuade the European Union and IMF – which have grown increasingly exasperated with its repeated failures to meet deficit and reform targets – that it will implement long-delayed reforms and slash spending further.
Dick Lugar: From top target to tea party pal? – Last year, Sen. Dick Lugar was the tea party’s top target — a 35-year veteran who lives in Washington, strays from conservative orthodoxy and even criticized the right-wing movement in the wake of the 2010 elections.But last week, Lugar was the tea party’s dining companion.
Michelle Malkin » For Santorum – Lest we forget, this election is not about choosing a showboat candidate to run against John King or Juan Williams or Wolf Blitzer.It’s not about “raging against” some arbitrarily defined GOP “machine.”
For many grass-roots conservatives across the country, Romney and Gingrich are the machine.
And at this point in the game, Rick Santorum represents the most conservative candidate still standing who can articulate both fiscal and social conservative values — and live them.
Michelle Malkin Endorses Santorum, Torches Newt – For months, super star conservative author and blogger Michelle Malkin has described the Republican presidential primary as a “pageant of the imperfects,” lamenting that the GOP field represents an uninspiring, “nose plugs” choice for conservatives. Despite her public misgivings, she’s finally donned the requisite odor blockers and made her selection: Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum. The entire piece is worth a thorough read, but here is a small sampling of Malkin’s pro-Santorum case:
Nevada officials: Luxor guests had Legionnaires’ – Health officials in Las Vegas said Monday that the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease was found in water samples at the Luxor hotel-casino this month after a guest died of the form of pneumonia.The Southern Nevada Health District said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention national surveillance program reported three cases in the past year of Luxor guests being diagnosed with the disease caused by Legionella bacteria.
The Las Vegas Strip resort’s water was tested after the first two cases were reported during the spring of last year, but no Legionella bacteria was detected, district officials said. Those guests recovered.
Officials say the Luxor, owned by MGM Resorts International, immediately began a remediation process once the bacteria was found.
MGM Resorts spokesman Gordon Absher said treatment procedures include superheating and super-chlorination of the water system.