POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 10/21

Bonus Quote of the Day

“If you seek to be a perfect minority, you’ll remain a minority. That’s not how Reagan built his revolution or how we won back the House in 1994.”

— Newt Gingrich, quoted by The Corner, defending his endorsement of Dede Scozzafava (R) in the upcoming NY-23 special election over Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman.


Trashing News Networks Isn’t New

In an interview with Sean Hannity, former Bush White House press secretary Dana Perino says that Obama White House criticism of Fox News for political bias in their coverage is what “dictators do.” 

Undercutting her argument, however, is that her own attacks of NBC News wererecorded on video.

Read more…


Botched Photo Op

If you need proof Republicans are in trouble in the NY-23 special election race, look no further than Dede Scozzafava’s (R) botched photo-op, as recorded by theWashington Independent

Scozzafava is surrounded by people holding signs for Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman.

Rubio Closing the Gap

A new Rasmussen Reports survey confirms the trend seen in the Quinnipiac poll this morning that found Marco Rubio (R) gaining in his GOP U.S. Senate primary with Gov. Charlie Crist (R).

Crist still holds a 14-point lead over Rubio, 49% to 35%, but that’s down from 22 points in mid-August.


Conflicting Polls

Just after a new Washington Post/ABC News poll found Democrats with a 12 point lead in the 2010 generic congressional ballot, a new Rasmussen Reports surveyfinds Republicans leading by five points, 42% to 37%.

The difference between the two is that WP/ABC surveyed all adults while Rasmussen uses a likely voter screen.

Tom Jensen: “My sense on the generic Congressional ballot right now is that with registered voters you have a single digit Democratic lead (what our poll coming out Friday shows) and that with likely voters you’re at about a tie. Just about no one except Rasmussen is polling likely voters yet though so it’s hard to say- we’re not going to narrow our sample to likely voters more than a year away from a particular election.”


Bloomberg Maintains Solid Lead

With two weeks to go until Election Day, a new SurveyUSA poll in New York City finds Mayor Michael Bloomberg leading challenger Bill Thompson (D), 53% to 41%.

Meanwhile, the New York Times notes Thompson felt snubbed last night when President Obama gave him no more than a “shout out” at a New York fundraiser. Though they are both Democrats, Obama has been exceedingly careful not to make a public endorsement of Thompson over Bloomberg.


Yet Another Poll Shows McDonnell Pulling Away

A new Public Policy Polling survey finds Bob McDonnell (R) has opened up a double digit lead over Creigh Deeds (D) in Virginia’s race for governor, 52% to 40%. Three weeks ago McDonnell led by just five points.

Analysis: “McDonnell’s standing is largely the result of two things: considerable support from independents and a disengaged Democratic electorate. With independents, who tend to split pretty evenly, the Republican leads 60-31. And while Barack Obama won Virginia by six points last year, the voters planning to turn out this fall supported John McCain by six points, a clear indication that many Democratic voters are just planning to stay at home.”


Quote of the Day

“These are unusually difficult times, with plenty of forces encouraging us to disagree. Let’s not start calling people out and compiling an enemies list.”

— Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), quoted by Roll Call, on the White House’s strategy to marginalize its critics.


Bush’s New Career

Apparently, former President George W. Bush is now a motivational speaker.

Read more…


Kerry Rises Again

First Read: “Take a look at some of John Kerry recent accomplishments: saves climate bill, becomes the administration’s go-to guy on Karzai in Afghanistan. It took him nearly four years to find his rhythm following his 2004 loss, but Kerry is a player again. On two different fronts, he has stepped up and become a game-saver for his party. On climate/energy, he took a bill that was languishing in the Senate and recruited Lindsey Graham to breathe new life into it. The bill still has a long way to go, but there’s a path to passage and that’s in no small part thanks to Kerry. On Karzai, there are a few tick-tocks about the role he played (one here in the Wall Street Journal), including how the Obama administration used him to, well, super-cede Holbrooke and others. As one Dem strategist commented to us today, ‘Kerry finally got to show what kind of president he could have been.’ But in classic Kerry fashion, no one in the media is in the dark about Kerry’s Afghanistan role.”


Car Czar Speaks

Steve Rattner, who led the bailout of the auto industry before abruptly leaving his post, writes about his experience in a lengthy Fortune piece:

“New to business meetings with Presidents, I found Obama’s style consistent with his ‘No drama Obama’ image and on a par with the best CEOs I had spent time with. He was cordial without being effusive and decisive when his advisers were divided…”

“The President’s political advisers were as torn as his task force: Polls universally showed the public strongly opposed to the auto bailouts. At the same time, the advisers recognized the severe economic and political consequences of a Chrysler shutdown across broad swaths of the industrial Midwest. We were dazzled that chief of staff Rahm Emanuel — a former congressional leader — could identify from memory the representatives in whose districts the large Chrysler facilities lay. After about an hour, the president asked for any final comments and then said, ‘I’ve decided. I’m prepared to support Chrysler if we can get the Fiat alliance done on terms that make sense to us.’ And we were thrilled when the President said, ‘I want you to be tough, and I want you to be commercial.’


Inside Obama’s Strategy to Marginalize Critics

President Obama “is working systematically to marginalize the most powerful forces behind the Republican Party, setting loose top White House officials to undermine conservatives in the media, business and lobbying worlds,” Politico reports.

Among the White House targets: U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Rush Limbaugh, the insurance industry, Wall Street executives and Fox News.

“Obama aides are using their powerful White House platform, combined with techniques honed in the 2008 campaign, to cast some of the most powerful adversaries as out of the mainstream and their criticism as unworthy of serious discussion.”

Daily Pulse: Centrists Become Focus in Negotiations

Senate health care talks “entered a crucial stage” as Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) “was drawn deeper into the negotiations, Democratic moderates jockeyed to position themselves, and Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) prepared to make some tough decisions,” Roll Call reports.

“With Reid aiming to finalize the merger of the Finance Committee package and Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee bill this week,” both Snowe and Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) “said they were looking to shape the final product in hopes of supporting it.”

Interestingly, the Washington Post reports moderate Democrats “may be growing receptive to the idea of a government health insurance plan.” Could it be the recent poll that showed overwhelming support for a public option?

Meanwhile, as negotiations continue on Capitol Hill, the New York Times says President Obama “is intentionally lowering his public profile on the issue, for the moment. The idea, aides said, is for the president to take a breather while Democrats resolve their internal conflicts, so he can come back strong with a fresh sales pitch when the legislation moves closer to floor votes.”


Plouffe, Schmidt Team Up

“Nearly a year after Election Day 2008, the campaign managers for John McCain and Barack Obama, who spent last year at war, have joined forces,” CNN reports.

“McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt and David Plouffe, his counterpart on the Obama campaign, are teaming up to develop a political communications center at the University of Delaware. Both men attended the university, though they did not graduate.”


No Improvement for Paterson

New York Gov. David Paterson‟s (D) “ratings with voters — favorable/unfavorable and job performance ratings, as well as hypothetical electoral contests — remain near record low levels,” according to a new Siena poll of registered voters.

In a Democratic primary, Paterson loses to Attorney General Andrew Cuomo 70% to 20%. In general election match-ups, he loses to Rudy Giuliani (R) 56% to 33% but beats Rick Lazio 39% to 37%.

Said pollster Steven Greenberg: “By every measure, voters continue to keep Governor Paterson in the electoral cellar, and by every measure, Paterson‟s numbers are within a handful of points or less of his all time record lows. It is now nine consecutive months of a favorable rating below 40% and eight consecutive months of a job approval rating below 25%.”

Interestingly, a new Quinnipiac poll finds Cuomo crushing Paterson, 51% to 24%, even among black voters in a Democratic primary.


Rubio Cuts Crist Lead in Half

A new Quinnipiac poll finds Florida Gov. Charlie Crist’s (R) lead over Marco Rubio (R) in the 2010 Republican U.S. Senate primary now stands at 15 points, 50% to 35%.

In general election match ups, Crist tops Rep. Kendrick Meek (D), 51% to 31% among all voters, while Rubio trails Meek 36% to 33%. 

Said pollster Peter Brown: “Gov. Charlie Crist’s lead, which had been 29 points August 19, has come back down to earth. His margin is still formidable, but obviously Marco Rubio’s focus on convincing Republican conservatives that he, not Crist, is their kind of guy is bearing fruit.”

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Explore posts in the same categories: Candidates, National, Politics, Virginia

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