POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 11/22

The Case for Obama Stepping Aside

 Pollsters Patrick Caddell and Doug Schoen write in the Wall Street Journal that — like Harry Truman and Lyndon Johnson — President Obama should accept the reality that he cannot govern the nation and not run for re-election.
“He should abandon his candidacy for re-election in favor of a clear alternative, one capable not only of saving the Democratic Party, but more important, of governing effectively and in a way that preserves the most important of the president’s accomplishments. He should step aside for the one candidate who would become, by acclamation, the nominee of the Democratic Party: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.”

“Never before has there been such an obvious potential successor — one who has been a loyal and effective member of the president’s administration, who has the stature to take on the office, and who is the only leader capable of uniting the country around a bipartisan economic and foreign policy.” 

Obama’s Solid Base

 Chris Cillizza: “One of the most persistent story lines for the president has been that the liberal left has grown increasingly dissatisfied with his actions (or inaction) on some of its priorities… But an examination of the polling data among key subgroups that constitute Obama’s base makes clear that he has as much support from them as any modern president seeking a second term.”
Said pollster Peter Hart: “There is one immutable fact about President Obama’s reelection chances: Nobody has a more solid 44% base than he does.”

“Obama’s base strength does not mean that he will face an easier-than-expected road to reelection. The country’s economy continues to sputter, large majorities of the public think the nation is headed in the wrong direction, and Obama’s numbers among electorally critical independents are nowhere near where his team would like them to be. And, if Obama’s base is largely united, so, too, is the opposition; in an October Washington Post-ABC News poll, 46% of respondents said they would not even consider voting for him.”

How Gingrich Can Beat Romney

 Marc Ambinder suggests Mitt Romney will win New Hampshire while Iowa will go to the strongest anti-Romney candidate, perhaps Newt Gingrich.
“So everything turns to South Carolina. If the person who wins Iowa…say…Newt…wins South Carolina, then the party’s conservative forces will seek to winnow the field quickly. There’s no question that everyone knows Newt’s vulnerabilities. But conservatives remember more indelibly, I think, the old Newt — the guy who invented the language that they use to run against Democrats…the guy who took on the Clintons in the 90s.. and this impression engenders considerable loyalty.”

“Suddenly, he gets money. Suddenly, Florida becomes a race again. And the conservative movement gets to see whether they can beat the establishment forces…losing the race in 2008 but vowing to fight another year. With the right conservative candidate, the Mitt Romney coronation is not inevitable. Still likely? Yes. Inevitable? No.” “So everything turns to South Carolina. If the person who wins Iowa…say…Newt…wins South Carolina, then the party’s conservative forces will seek to winnow the field quickly. There’s no question that everyone knows Newt’s vulnerabilities. But conservatives remember more indelibly, I think, the old Newt — the guy who invented the language that they use to run against Democrats…the guy who took on the Clintons in the 90s.. and this impression engenders considerable loyalty.”

“Suddenly, he gets money. Suddenly, Florida becomes a race again. And the conservative movement gets to see whether they can beat the establishment forces…losing the race in 2008 but vowing to fight another year. With the right conservative candidate, the Mitt Romney coronation is not inevitable. Still likely? Yes. Inevitable? No.”

 

Stabenow Leads in Michigan

 A new EPIC/MRA poll in Michigan shows Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) leading likely challenger Pete Hoekstra (R) in the U.S. Senate race, 48% to 42%.
Meanwhile, in a head-to-head presidential matchup in the state, Mitt Romney leads President Obama by five points, 46% to 41%.

Why the Supercommittee Failed

 Mike Allen: “The supercommittee last met Nov. 1 — three weeks ago! It was a public hearing featuring a history lesson, ‘Overview of Previous Debt Proposals,’ with Alan Simpson, Erskine Bowles, Pete Domenici and Alice Rivlin. The last PRIVATE meeting was Oct. 26. You might as well stop reading right there: The 12 members (6 House, 6 Senate; 6 R, 6 D) were never going to strike a bargain, grand or otherwise, if they weren’t talking to each other. Yes, we get that real deal-making occurs in small groups. But there never WAS a functioning supercommittee: There was Republican posturing and Democratic posturing, with some side conversations across the aisle.”

Gingrich Storms Into Lead Nationally

 A new Reuters/Ipsos poll shows Newt Gingrich leading the Republican presidential field nationally with 24%, followed by Mitt Romney at 22%, Herman Cain at 12% and Rick Perry at 10%.

Quote of the Day

 “As long as we have some Republican lawmakers who feel more enthralled with a pledge they took to a Republican lobbyist than they do to a pledge to the country to solve the problems, this is going to be hard to do.”
— Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), in an interview with CNN, on Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge blocking compromise among the debt supercommittee members.

Supercommittee to Admit Defeat

 “The congressional committee tasked with reducing the federal deficit is poised to admit defeat as soon as Monday, and its unfinished business will set up a year-end battle over emergency jobless benefits and an expiring payroll tax holiday,” the Washington Postreports.
“The policy battle comes as the parties are gearing up for a high-stakes election season dominated by economic concerns, with both the White House and Congress in play. The political pressure that has helped keep the 12-member supercommittee from compromising on hot-button issues such as taxes is sure to grow more intense.”

 

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