No More Wise Men

Foreign Policy has an interesting look at Sen. Richard Lugar’s (R-IN) tough re-election campaign noting that, “It isn’t just the career of the Senate’s senior-most Republican that is at stake here; it is an entire tradition of Republican foreign policy that is being repudiated by the party faithful.”

“But Lugar’s predicament is wholly predictable. It’s the logical terminus, you could even say, of a career devoted to a party that has always been divided between the presumptions of its grandee class on the one hand and a resentful and bellicose populist movement on the other. Over the decades, those resentments have repeatedly been papered over, only to re-emerge with increasing virulence. Perhaps the surprising thing isn’t that Lugar and his fellow remnants of the establishment are on the run. It’s that they survived as long as they did inside a party that often regarded the idea of a patrician elite with consternation.”


Good News and Bad News for Romney

David Brody: “Here is the good news for GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney: The GOP Establishment figures look like they are beginning to coalesce around him.”

“Here is the bad news Romney: The GOP Establishment figures look like they are beginning to coalesce around him.”


Bonus Quote of the Day

“Romney is not a conservative. He’s not, folks. You can argue with me all day long on that, but he isn’t… This isn’t personal, not with what country faces and so forth. I like him very much. I’ve spent some social time with him. He’s a fine guy. He’s very nice gentleman. He is a gentleman. But he’s not a conservative.”

— Rush Limbaugh, on his radio show, not doing the current GOP frontrunner any favors in the upcoming primaries.


Did Cain’s Tax Plan Come from a Video Game?

Huffington Post: “Long before Cain was running for president and getting attention for his 999 plan, the residents of SimCity 4 — which was released in 2003 — were living under a system where the default tax rate was 9 percent for commercial taxes, 9 percent for industrial taxes and 9 percent for residential taxes.”

Wherever it comes from, Howard Kurtz says it has little chance of ever passing Congress.


Perry’s Wife Says God Called Him to Run

Anita Perry reflected on the “rough month” her husband, Rick Perry, has endured on the campaign trail, NBC News reports, and suggested he was being targeted for his evangelical Christian faith.

Said Perry: “We have been brutalized and beaten up and chewed up in the press to where I need this today. We are being brutalized by our opponents, and our own party. So much of that is, I think they look at him, because of his faith. He is the only true conservative — well, there are some true conservatives. And they’re there for good reasons. And they may feel like God called them too. But I truly feel like we are here for that purpose.”

She likened her husband’s decision to run to encountering a “burning bush,” a reference to the Biblical story of Moses receiving a sign from God.


Cain Makes Bestseller List

He’s been criticized for doing a book tour during a presidential race but This is Herman Cain! debuts at #4 on the New York Times bestseller list this weekend.


Jindal Headed Towards Landslide Win

A new Clarus Research poll in Louisiana shows Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) essentially unopposed for re-election with 57% and Tara Hollis (D) the next closest challenger at just 5%. Another 29% are undecided.


Nelson’s Ads Break New Ground

A new series of political advertisements on behalf of embattled Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) “could open the door to a flood of similar ads financed by outside groups and even businesses working directly with political candidates — a sharp departure from past practice,” the New York Times reports.

“Federal campaign rules restrict politicians from ‘coordinating’ their advertisements with outside groups except under certain circumstances. Politicians — worried about tripping over the legal restrictions — have usually shied away from working directly with outside groups on ads.”

Rick Hasen says these types of coordinated “issue” ads are an entirely predictableconsequence of the current regime.


Cain Leads Romney in Florida

A new American Research Group poll in Florida finds Herman Cain leading the Republican presidential race with 34%, followed by Mitt Romney at 28% and Newt Gingrich at 11%. Rick Perry is way back at just 5%.


Edwards Blames Obama for Indictment

The defense team for John Edwards said in a court filing that President Obama’s Justice Department “lacked the political courage” to stop a Bush-appointed prosecutor from indicting their client on campaign finance-related charges “even though the prosecution’s theory is completely unpredecented,” Politico reports.


“Occupy Wall Street” Twice as Popular as “Tea Party”

The latest Time poll finds the Occupy Wall Street movement has a 54% favorable rating. In contrast, the Tea Party’s favorable rating is just 27%.

Greg Sargent: “In fairness, the Tea Party has been in existence since before the 2010 elections, and even has had a seat at the governing table during the debt ceiling and government shutdown debacles, which clearly took their toll on the Tea Party’s image. Occupy Wall Street is just getting started. But it does seem clear that a confluence of events — the protests, Obama’s jobs push, Elizabeth Warren’s Senate candidacy, and the national backlash from the right all these things have provoked — are pushing populist issues such as fair taxation and income inequality to the forefront of the national conversation.”

Jon Meacham: “The Occupy Wall Street protests at last suggest that America’s wealth gap is once again becoming an organizing political principle in the country. Mobs rarely have good answers to problems, and there is no doubt much to be skeptical about in the crowds making all the noise. But the noise they’re making deserves a place in the broad arena of contending forces.”


Perry’s Cheer

The Des Moines Register asks Rick Perry, “You were a yell leader at Texas A&M. What yell would you give to urge on your campaign?”

His answer: “Rick Perry. Liberty. Rick Perry. Freedom. Freedom is working. Liberty is working. We’ve got to get America working again.”


Still Better Than Bush

The latest Time poll finds that by a 48% to 37% margin, respondents consider President Obama better at his job than his predecessor, George W. Bush.


Quote of the Day

“This will probably get me in trouble, but as my grandfather would say, ‘I does not care.'”

— Herman Cain, quoted by ABC News, when asked which of his rivals attacks bothered him most.


Obama Still Leads Potential Rivals

Despite sweeping pessimism about the economy and a 44% approval rating, President Obama leads his top three potential Republican rivals, according to a new Time poll.

Obama leads Mitt Romney, 46% to 43% among likely voters. He crushes Rick Perry, 50% to 38%, and tops Herman Cain, 49% to 37%.

Key finding: “In each case, the President was buoyed by his performance among female voters. Women prefer Obama over Romney by eight percentage points (49% to 41%), by 17 points over Perry (53% to 36%) and by 21 points over Cain (53% to 32%).”

Similar findings in the new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll: Obama leads Romney, 46% to 44%, tops Perry 51% to 39%, and beats Cain, 49% to 38%.


Where Cain Overperforms

Why does Herman Cain lead Mitt Romney is the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll?

First Read: “Cain over-performs vs. Romney in the GOP horse race among high-interest Republican voters, men, those 55-plus, Republicans who have college educations, Tea Party supporters, and those who identify themselves as “very conservative.” Where Romney over-performs: less-interested voters, women, non-Tea Party Republicans, and moderate/liberal Republicans. In fact, re-read the responses from the RE-interviews: These are folks who ARE watching the debates and who are paying attention to the day-to-day campaign. These numbers are yellow flags that border on red for Romney. Why? He’s being propped up by folks who simply are familiar with him, not those who are actively following the campaign. Ouch.”

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

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