POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 11/28
Ben Smith: “The last shred of regulation preventing unlimited money from flowing into presidential campaigns is the requirement that campaigns not ‘coordinate’ their communications with Super PACs and the other independent groups pouring money into that race. Rick Perry’s campaign for president appears to be testing the limits of that regulation: In its Thanksgiving video, the campaign uses two clips from an slickly produced advertisement aired on Perry’s behalf by Make Us Great Again, a SuperPAC run by a longtime Perry associate, Mike Toomey.”
The New Hampshire Union Leader endorses Newt Gingrich in the New Hampshire primary.
“America is at a crucial crossroads. It is not going to be enough to merely replace Barack Obama next year. We are in critical need of the innovative, forward-looking strategy and positive leadership that Gingrich has shown he is capable of providing.”
“We sympathize with the many people we have heard from, both here and across the country, who remain unsure of their choice this close to the primary. It is understandable. Our nation is in peril, yet much of the attention has been focused on fluff, silliness and each candidate’s minor miscues. Truth be known, many in the liberal media are belittling the Republican candidates because they don’t want any of them to be taken as a serious challenger to their man, Obama.”
The Economist: “Even as the euro zone hurtles towards a crash, most people are assuming that, in the end, European leaders will do whatever it takes to save the single currency. That is because the consequences of the euro’s destruction are so catastrophic that no sensible policymaker could stand by and let it happen.”
A euro break-up would cause a global bust worse even than the one in 2008-09. The world’s most financially integrated region would be ripped apart by defaults, bank failures and the imposition of capital controls… The euro zone could shatter into different pieces, or a large block in the north and a fragmented south. Amid the recriminations and broken treaties after the failure of the European Union’s biggest economic project, wild currency swings between those in the core and those in the periphery would almost certainly bring the single market to a shuddering halt.”
“Yet the threat of a disaster does not always stop it from happening. The chances of the euro zone being smashed apart have risen alarmingly, thanks to financial panic, a rapidly weakening economic outlook and pigheaded brinkmanship. The odds of a safe landing are dwindling fast.”
Tom Friedman says President Obama should admit “that he made a mistake in spurning his own deficit reduction commission, chaired by Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, and is now adopting Simpson-Bowles — which already has Republican and Democratic support — as his long-term fiscal plan to be phased in after a near-term stimulus. If he did that, he would win politically and create a national consensus that would trump his opponents, right and left.”
“My gut says that if the president lays out such a plan — one that begins with him taking all the political risks on himself and then demanding the G.O.P. and his own party follow — he will be both defining himself and the future in a way that would earn him so much centrist support and respect that it would leave every possible Republican opponent in the dust, no matter how obstructionist they are or want to be.”
Alex Castellanos: “Month after month, dollar after dollar, debate after debate, we’ve seen we’ve Mitt Romney at his best, yet failing to pull away from the field. Romney is still leaving the door open to those who have fallen to the ‘B’ tier. He is giving all his opponents the opportunity to get back into this contest. If Romney doesn’t energize his campaign soon, somebody might actually try to win this race besides him.”
“That might not be hard to do. His competitors are about 10 minutes away from figuring out it is in all their interest to go negative on Romney and drag him down to their level. If they test Romney and fail, nothing is lost. In fact, they’ll strengthen Romney and probably make him President. But if any candidate effectively cuts Romney, others will see blood in the water. The sharks will circle…”
“Somewhere Barack Obama is smiling. If they bring Mitt Romney down, it’s jump ball for the GOP.”
Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson — “left out of all but two of the seemingly endless Republican presidential debates” — tells the Santa Fe New Mexican that he’s seriously considering running for the Libertarian Party nomination for president.
Said Johnson: “I feel abandoned by the Republican Party. The Republican Party has left me by the wayside. If I’d have been included in 16 of the last debates we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.”
Rep. Charlie Gonzalez (D-TX) said he won’t seek re-election, the San Antonio Express-News reports, “a decision that will end the congressional tenure of a Democratic family whose name has been synonymous with the city of San Antonio for more than half a century.”
“Gonzalez, who sued the state over a redistricting plan that carved downtown out of his central San Antonio congressional district, said it was not reapportionment, but the need to provide financial stability for his family that’s forcing him to seek a new career.”
Said Gonzalez: “I still find the job hugely rewarding, but the demands pull me somewhere else. I’ve been in Congress for 14 years and I want to do something else — what that is, I really don’t know. But financially, I would like to be productive and have the resources to make a better life.”
Pollster Ann Selzer tells The Atlantic that GOP presidential candidates are approaching the Iowa caucuses very differently this campaign cycle.
Said Selzer: “What’s different is — and maybe this will change in the next month — [in past cycles] you had this feeling of candidates here, kind of a pulse of their supporters, lots of public events. You felt things happening. I haven’t felt that at all [this year]. You look at the number of candidate days here, it’s really small. The way that they’re campaigning is very different. We have all of these debates that have been very high-profile. It’s a different campaign.”
A bipartisan group known as Americans Elect “has raised $22 million and is likely to place a third presidential candidate on the ballot in every state next year,” the Washington Postreports.
“The goal is to provide an alternative to President Obama and the GOP nominee and break the tradition of a Democrat-vs.-Republican lineup.”
“The effort could represent a promising new chapter for political moderates, who see a wide-open middle in the political landscape as congressional gridlock and bitter partisan fights have driven down favorability ratings for both parties… The group is relying on an ambitious plan to hold a political convention on the Internet that would treat registered voters like fans of ‘American Idol’, giving everyone a shot at picking a favorite candidate.”
Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch (D) tells Politico he thinks current Mayor Michael Bloomberg (I) should mount a presidential bid to address the “lack of leadership” in Washington.
Said Koch: “I believe there is a major chance of a third party winning and I would like to see him pursue it for 2012. What I believe he offers is independence and money to finance a campaign and to be president.”