Palin Will Not Run for President

Sarah Palin announced in a letter to supporters that she would not run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012. She also ruled out a third party or independent bid.

Arizona Redistricting Could Boost Democrats

The Fix looks over a draft map released by Arizona’s bipartisan redistricting commission and reports that it could have given Arizona Democrats “a big break.”

“A draft map released by the commission late Monday shores up Democratic Rep.Gabrielle Giffords’ GOP-leaning district, forces the state’s Republican incumbents into some tough decisions and creates a new 9th district that Democrats will be slightly favored to win… In the end, Democrats have a chance at winning four or five of the state’s nine districts over the next decade. And that’s a pretty good map in a reddish state. The draft map is not final, but has been approved by three of five members of the commission, so Republicans aren’t expecting any major changes in their favor.”

Interest in Campaign Similar to Four Years Ago

A new Pew Research survey finds that public interest in the presidential campaign remains as high today as it was at this point in 2007, when there were contested races in both parties.


Nelson Narrows the Gap with Bruning

A new Public Policy Polling survey in Nebraska finds Jon Bruning (R) leading Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) by four points, 46% to 42%. In January, Bruning held an 11 point lead.

“It still looks like an uphill battle for Nelson — it’s never easy to win if you’re one of the most unpopular Senators in the country. But Bruning has been weakened so much over the course of 2011 that there’s a ray of hope for Nelson that might not have existed earlier this year. It’s the Harry Reid plan for an unpopular incumbent- make your opponent even more unpalatable than you. That’s not an easy thing to pull off but Nelson’s headed in the right direction.”

Palin Inspired Character in New Novel

Nicolle Wallace, who worked as a senior advisor on the McCain-Palin 2008 campaign, tellsTime that the main character in her new novel, It’s Classified was based on Sarah Palin.

Said Wallace: “The idea of a mentally ill vice president who suffers in complete isolation was obviously sparked by the behaviors I witnessed by Sarah Palin. What if somebody who was ill-equipped for the office were to ascend to the presidency or vice presidency? What would they do? How long would it take for people to figure it out? I became consumed by this question.”

“Palin vacillated between extraordinary highs on the campaign stage — she ignited more enthusiasm than our side had seen at any other point — to debilitating lows. She was often withdrawn, uncommunicative and incapable of performing even the most basic tasks required of her job as McCain’s running mate… There certainly were discussions — not for long because of the arc the campaign took — but certainly there were discussions about whether, if they were to win, it would be appropriate for her to be sworn in.”

Trump Backs Off Threat

Donald Trump, who threatened to run for president as an independent candidate if he didn’t like the Republican nominee, tells Fox News that he’s warming to the candidates.

Said Trump: “Well, I think the field is starting to look pretty interesting and pretty good. And, look, the key is that Obama be beaten.”

Paul Raised $8 Million in Q3

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) raised $8 million for his presidential campaign in the third quarter with 100,000 donors, NBC News reports.

He blew past an earlier estimate of just $5 million and nearly doubled his second quarter total of $4.5 million.

Bonus Quote of the Day

“I hired Sarah Palin because she was hot and got ratings.”

— Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes, in an interview with the Associated Press.


Republicans’ Hispanic Balancing Act

The Republican presidential candidates have struggled to balance their desire to appeal to the growing number of Hispanic voters with the Tea Party’s strong anti-immigration views, but the Atlantic Wire notes one small way that they might have found: “Defending the honor of Marco Rubio from the nation’s largest Spanish-language broadcaster, Univision.”

“On Tuesday, Romney, Perry, Jon Huntsman, and Michele Bachmann all raced to defend Rubio, Florida’s freshman senator. One by one, they all announced they’re boycotting a debate hosted by Univision on January 29 at the University of Miami. Three Florida Republican lawmakers, all Latino, urged the ban, claiming that Univision tried to blackmail Rubio into giving an interview about immigration on its liberal show… Univision told Rubio they would hold or soften a story from July about Rubio’s brother-in-law getting busted for drug trafficking 24 years ago, they say.”

Don’t Count Perry Out Yet

Despite Rick Perry’s slip in the polls, First Read notes he’s still got four things going for him.

“The first is money… What this means: Unlike Bachmann or Huntsman, Perry will have enough money to buy himself a second chance. The second reason is the upcoming debates. Yes, Perry has struggled in his past performances, but with expectations now so low, all it takes is one good performance by Perry — and a shaky one by Romney — to produce a story… A third reason: the primary calendar. Iowa and South Carolina are tailor-made for Perry, and with the 10 days in between South Carolina (1/21) and Florida (1/31), a Palmetto State win could give him momentum going into Florida and Super Tuesday (which features several southern states). And the fourth (and perhaps most) important reason is ideology.”

Behind the Cain Surge

Michael Medved: “The surging support for presidential contender Herman Cain stems in part from his warm, likable personality, his status as an outsider, his record of accomplishment in the world of business, and his bold, upbeat program for reform. But it also reflects the stupid, petty, mutually destructive nastiness that’s recently afflicted the campaigns of Rick Perry and Mitt Romney, leaving the two frontrunners badly damaged and creating an obvious opening for the Hermanator — or perhaps for someone else.”

Interesting side note: Cain’s new book out this week, This is Herman Cain!, is now on Amazon’s bestseller list.

Perry Raised $17 Million Last Quarter

Rick Perry raised over $17 million in the third quarter, Politico confirms.

The figure “is almost as much as Mitt Romney raised in his first quarter as a declared presidential candidate this year. It’s also more than Rudy Giuliani and John McCain raised in the first quarter of 2007, when they were campaigning in a stronger economy and a more donor-rich environment.”

Key details: Nearly all of the money raised can be used in the GOP primaries and Perry still has $15 million cash on hand.

Maggie Haberman notes that “is an astonishingly low burn rate, one that is far smaller than the roughly 30 percent of money raised that Mitt Romney’s campaign spent last quarter.”

Quote of the Day

Forbes magazine named Scott Brown Wall Street’s favorite senator. I was thinking that’s probably not an award I’m going to get.”

— U.S. Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren (D), quoted by the Boston Herald, taking a swipe at Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) in last night’s Massachusetts Democratic primary debate.

Pushing a Dead Jobs Bill

Although it is clear that President Obama doesn’t have the votes — either in the House or the Senate — to pass his American Jobs Act, The Hill notes that this “will not stop Obama from talking about the jobs bill and nothing else” for a while to come.

“That’s because the White House hopes the president’s steady drumbeat of “pass the bill” can become a rallying cry for his supporters even if it doesn’t create a single job… What matters to the White House are the politics of the battle. The president’s advisers want to ensure Obama has a vehicle to get him on the right side of the fear and loathing America feels toward Washington… Instead, they know the bill will be broken up, and smaller battles will break out, giving Obama smaller victories that officials hope will add up to a big win next November. But more important than that are the myriad opportunities available this fall and winter for Congress to act like Congress and for Obama to call them out for doing so.”

“And while it might seem to Washington like the president is tilting at windmills, the hope in Chicago is that voters want to fight windmills too, and they trust Obama to lead the charge. If that turns out to be the case, then folks in Washington might start wondering about the jobs bill the same way Elvis fans wonder about the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Maybe it’s not really dead.”

Congressional Approval Sinks to Another New Low

A new Washington Post/ABC News poll finds Americans “have reached a new level of disgust toward Congress that has left nearly all voters angry at their leaders and doubtful that they can fix the problems facing the country.”

Just 14% approve of the job Congress is doing. That is lower than just before the 1994, 2006 and 2010 elections, when the majority party was on the verge of losing power in the House.

Romney Regains Status as Frontrunner

A new Quinnipiac national poll finds Mitt Romney leading the Republican presidential field with 22%, followed by Herman Cain at 17% and Rick Perry at 14%. All other candidates are in the single digits.

Said pollster Peter Brown: “After seeing his lead disappear with the entrance of Rick Perry into the trace, Mitt Romney has regained his position out front as the Texas governor’s fortunes have fallen. The GOP race, however, remains quite open… A big question now is whether Herman Cain is a serious candidate for the nomination. He has zoomed into second place ahead of Perry.”

Overall Fundraising Down in Q3

Roll Call reports 3rd quarter filings “will feature some of the most dismal fundraising numbers in the past few cycles, according to interviews with 20 operatives on both sides of the aisle. Consultants speculated fundraising across the board could be down about 25 percent this quarter, while others complained that it took twice as many solicitations to meet their goals.”

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

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