POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 1/25

Bauer Regrets Use of Metaphor

South Carolina Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer (R), under fire for drawing a comparison between needy people and “stray animals,” told CNN that he regrets his choice of words.

Bauer, who is running for governor, also added that he is “not against animals.”

Democrats Need to Learn the Blame Game

“Contrary to what you might think, I am a proud member of the pro finger-pointing caucus,” James Carville writes. “Point fingers is exactly what Democrats have done following Republican Scott Brown’s surprise victory in Massachusetts, and the subsequent setback for health care reform.”

“The White House, Martha Coakley, the Massachusetts attorney-general, Celinda Lake, her pollster, congressional Democrats, the Democratic National Committee, Nancy Pelosi, the House Speaker, and Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader, are just a few of the circular firing squad that has sucked up every last breath in Washington this past week.”

“Democrats would not be playing the blame game with one another for the loss or for the health care debacle if they had only pointed fingers at those (or in this case, the one) who put Americans (and most of the world) in the predicament we’re in: George W. Bush.”

However, Politico has a different take: “Democrats Bush-bashing strategy goes bust.”

White House Doesn’t See Parallels to 1994

In an interview with the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Rep. Marion Berry (D-AR) claims the White House is ignoring the parallels between today’s political environment and when Democrats lost control of the House in 1994.

Said Berry: “They just don’t seem to give it any credibility at all. They just kept telling us how good it was going to be. The president himself, when that was brought up in one group, said, ‘Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was you’ve got me.’ We’re going to see how much difference that makes now.”

Berry made his decision and just announced his retirement.

Spotlight Back on Sanford Scandal

If South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford (R) thought he could quietly serve out the remaining months of his term without much publicity — particularly with the state’s lieutenant governor now stealing the headlines — he was wrong.

Jenny Sanford’s new book, Staying True, will soon put the focus back on her husband’s personal problems.

According to GOP 12, the book’s release will also be accompanied by a media tour, starting with The View on February 8.

Most Think Stimulus Funds Were Wasted

A new CNN/Opinion Research survey finds that 63% of the public thinks that projects in the economic stimulus plan passed last year “were included for purely political reasons and will have no economic benefit,” with 36% saying those projects will benefit the economy.

Nearly three out of four Americans think the money has simply been wasted.

Of course, of the $787 billion in the package, $288 billion was for tax cuts to 95% of all Americans and $275 billion was for states to prevent cuts in public services. Most of the remaining money dedicated for specific “shovel-ready projects” hasn’t even been spent yet because the projects were not “shovel-ready.”

Joe Klein: “It is very difficult to have a democracy without citizens. It is impossible to be a citizen if you don’t make an effort to understand the most basic activities of your government. It is very difficult to thrive in an increasingly competitive world if you’re a nation of dodos.”

An Edwards Sex Tape?

If you didn’t think the scandals surrounding John Edwards could get worse, think again.

youngbook.jpgSources have told Gawker that, “in the throes of their affair, John Edwards and Rielle Hunter made a sex tape that contains ‘several sex acts.’ And that his aide, Andrew Young found it on an unmarked DVD.”

More details are expected in Young’s book, The Politician, due out next week and in a Friday interview to promote it on the ABC News show20/20.

Biden Will Not Run for Senate

“After this weekend’s mini frenzy over whether Beau Biden will run for his father’s old Senate seat, Beau Biden has now announced — in an e-mail to supporters and on his Web site — that he will not run for the seat in 2010. He announced he’s running for re-election as attorney general instead,” First Read reports.

“This decision all but makes GOP Congressman Mike Castle the front-runner for Delaware’s Senate seat, giving the GOP a clear pick-up opportunity here.”

UpdateCQ Politics reports Sen. Ted Kaufman (D-DE) “is sticking to his plan to retire at the end of this year and will not defend the seat to which he was appointed on a interim basis.”

Previewing the State of the Union

The New York Times is the first to get a snapshot of what President Obama will say in his first State of the Union speech on Wednesday night, noting he’s expected to propose “a package of modest initiatives intended to help middle-class families, including tax credits for child care, caps on some student loan payments and a requirement that companies let workers save automatically for retirement.”

“By focusing on what one White House official calls ‘the sandwich generation’ — struggling families squeezed between sending their children to college and caring for elderly parents — Mr. Obama hopes to use his speech on Wednesday to demonstrate that he understands the economic pain of ordinary Americans. The proposals also include expanded tax credits for retirement savings and money for programs to help families care for elderly relatives.”

Pence Edges Bayh in New Poll

A new Rasmussen Reports survey in Indiana finds Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) edging Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN) in a possible U.S. Senate match up, 47% to 44%.

Pence is reportedly mulling a challenge to Bayh.

Bayh leads former Rep. John Hostettler (R), 44% to 41%, and beats Marlin Stutzman (R), 45% to 33%.

Perry Using Felons as Campaign Workers

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s (R) gubernatorial campaign “has unknowingly paid convicted felons as part-time workers under its incentive program to turn out voters for the Republican primary,” the Dallas Morning News reports.

Health Care Debate Flatlines

“Democratic leaders in Congress insist they will pass a health care reform bill. They just have no idea how or when they will do it,” Roll Call reports.

“After last week’s disastrous defeat in Massachusetts shattered their 60-vote Senate supermajority, Democrats floundered and appeared trapped between two political realities. If they don’t pass a reform bill, they will have failed a key test of their ability to govern and face a dispirited base and potentially catastrophic losses in November. But Members also fear that moving too quickly or aggressively will turn off independents and likewise lead to an electoral drubbing.”

Meanwhile, in an interview by ABC News, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) had advice for how to handle Republican opposition: “Make them filibuster. Make them go before America people.  Make the American people look at a modern day spectacle of what a filibuster would entail. I think it’s time to call their bluff.”

Quote of the Day

“It’s a disappointment. It hurts like hell. I can’t tell you how much it hurts. But, it’s also a gift. If we learn the lessons to get back to the basics, to deliver for the American people the change we promised them in 2008.”

— Donna Brazile. in an interview on CNN, on Democratic Senate loss in Massachusetts.

Most Polarized First Year Ever

Gallup: “The 65 percentage-point gap between Democrats’ (88%) and Republicans’ (23%) average job approval ratings for Barack Obama is easily the largest for any president in his first year in office, greatly exceeding the prior high of 52 points for Bill Clinton.”

Goodman Polls Much Better than Reid

A new DailyKos/Research 2000 poll in Nevada finds Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman, a former Democrat turned independent, continues to poll much better than Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) when matched up against potential GOP challengers for U.S. Senate.

Reid trails Danny Tarkanian (R), 51% to 41%, and loses to Sue Lowden (R), 51% to 42%. However, Goodman edges Tarkanian, 44% to 41%, and tops Lowden, 44% to 40%.

Ford Looks Likely to Enter Senate Race

The New York Times reports that friends who have spoken with Harold Ford Jr. (D) in recent days said that he was “more likely than not” to enter the New York U.S. Senate race.

“He has done little to tamp down such speculation. He has taken a 30-day leave of absence from his job at Bank of America; reserved several campaign Web sites, like FordforNewYork.com; and is in discussions about setting up an exploratory committee that would allow him to raise money while he is deciding.”

Giannoulias, Kirk Lead in Illinois

A new Chicago Tribune/WGN-TV poll in Illinois finds Alexi Giannoulias (D) in the Democratic U.S. Senate race with 34%, followed by Cheryle Jackson (D) at 19% and David Hoffman (D) at 16%.

In the Republican race, Rep. Mark Kirk (R) held onto a wide lead over Patrick Hughes, 47% to 8%.

Interestingly, CQ Politics reports Kirk’s own internal poll shows a much closer race for the Republican nomination.

Eric Zorn: “I would have predicted a better showing for Hoffman, who has picked up numerous newspaper endorsements and has great anti-corruption bona fides, and for Hughes, who is the favorite of movement conservatives. But unless nearly all the undecideds break the other way (or our polling is off), Hoffman and Hughes look like toast.”

The primary is on February 2.

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One Comment on “POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 1/25”

  1. Tom Degan Says:

    I like Harold Ford. I really hope he is able to pull this off but I think he might have gotten in over his head. There are so many forces stacked against him (particularly Chuckles Schumer) that it would seem to be a herculean task before him. But if anyone can do it, he can. he’s a smart guy and a good guy.

    Carpetbagger? New York has a bit of a history there: Bobby Kennedy, Hillary Clinton…I don’t really think it’s a problem. Corporate Democrat? We shall see.

    That being said, a lot of people who should know better are predicting that 2010 will be a Republican year. They aren’t paying attention. The extremists within that party will only continue to destroy it. Anyone who thinks that 2010 is going to be a Republican year had better think again. The Tea Party knuckleheads are already taking credit for the Massachusetts upset last week and are set (they believe) to take over the party. When they are denied the opportunity to do that, they’ll splinter the vote with third or even fourth party uprisings.

    How am I so sure of this? It’s quite simple, really. These people are not only crazy, they’re dumber than doggy dung. It’s only a matter of months before their mad house of cards comes crashing down.

    http://www.tomdegan.blogspot.com

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY


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