Bonus Quote of the Day

“Throwing more tax revenue into the mix is simply not going to produce a desirable result, and it won’t pass. I mean, putting aside the fact that Republicans don’t like to raise taxes, Democrats don’t like to either.”

— Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY), in an interview on ABC’s This Week, insisting tax increases will not be part of any agreement to raise the nation’s debt ceiling.

South Carolina Could Kill GOP Primary

South Carolina’s “much-watched first-in-the-South Republican presidential primary could become a far less important first-in-the-South caucus,” the Columbia Statereports.

“Without the help of the state, the party may not legally be able to hold a primary in early 2012… Gov. Nikki Haley is expected to veto part of a state budget proposal, now on her desk, that could partially pay for that primary.”

“Switching to a caucus would end the state’s three-decade tradition of holding the first-in-the-South primary. That primary’s importance has been bolstered by state Republican voters’ record of picking the eventual GOP nominee in every race since Ronald Reagan in 1980. The state also would lose national exposure, prestige and millions of dollars that campaigns, media and others spend during the event.”

Quote of the Day

“Are you a flake?”

— Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace asking Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN)

Big Test for Republican Hopefuls This Week

National Journal notes that when the presidential candidates “file their second-quarter campaign finance reports with the Federal Election Commission at the end of the month, we may be able to start sorting the buyers from the beggars, the needy from the greedy, and those who are serious contenders from those who aren’t.”

Most watched will be Tim Pawlenty: “Perhaps no candidate has more at stake than the former Minnesota governor. The media calls Pawlenty a top-tier candidate, and his hard work on the ground and solid team at headquarters in Minneapolis contribute to that image… One thing we’ll be watching closely: The amount of debt he’s already reporting. Holding back from paying vendors is a good way to boost a cash-on-hand number, but it’s an indication that the campaign could be worried about cash flow.”


Obama Looks to Big Donors

President Obama’s reelection team “has launched an invigorated effort to draw money from wealthy donors, buttressing the campaign against a potential decline in contributions from the everyday supporters who helped fuel his massive take in 2008,” the Chicago Tribune reports.

“A new program called Presidential Partners asks supporters to commit $75,800 to the Obama Victory Fund, a joint project of the campaign and the Democratic National Committee. That would put Democratic contributors at the maximum they are allowed to give national party committees for the entire 2012 cycle — leaving them unable to donate to the party’s congressional fundraising entities.”


Romney and Bachmann Lead in Iowa

Mitt Romney and Rep. Michele Bachmann lead in the year’s first Des Moines Register Iowa Poll on the Republican presidential field.

Romney has 23% and Bachmann has 22% among likely Republican caucus-goers. They are followed by Herman Cain at 10%, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul at 7%, Tim Pawlenty at 6%, Rick Santorum at 4% and Jon Huntsman at 2%.

While these numbers are very big for Bachmann, they’re just as good for Romney in that Pawlenty has gained little traction despite spending a lot of time in Iowa.

Cartoon of the Day


Palin Heads to Iowa Next Week

Sarah Palin will visit Iowa Tuesday “for the premiere of a new documentary about her life — arriving in the politics-central state of Iowa the same day as President Obama,” the Des Moines Register reports.

“Palin’s pending arrival in Iowa, home of the first voting contest in the presidential nominating process, is restoking speculation about her aspirations for the White House.”

New York Approves Same Sex Marriage

“Lawmakers voted late Friday to legalize same-sex marriage, making New York the largest state where gay and lesbian couples will be able to wed and giving the national gay-rights movement new momentum from the state where it was born,” theNew York Times reports.

“The marriage bill, whose fate was uncertain until moments before the vote, was approved 33 to 29 in a packed but hushed Senate chamber. Four members of the Republican majority joined all but one Democrat in the Senate in supporting the measure after an intense and emotional campaign aimed at the handful of lawmakers wrestling with a decision that divided their friends, their constituents and sometimes their own homes.”

Andrew Sullivan: “The fact that New York State has just become the sixth (plus DC!) to grant gay citizens the civil right to marry is a BFD. I say that having observed and participated in this process for two decades.”

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

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