POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 12/2

Cain’s Wife Didn’t Know About Friendship

Herman Cain acknowledged to the New Hampshire Union Leader that he repeatedly gave Ginger White — the woman who alleges a 13 year affair with him — money to help her with “month-to-month bills and expenses” without telling his wife.

In fact, Cain said, his wife, Gloria, “did not know that we were friends until she came out with this story.”

Friday promises to be an interesting day for Cain.

2012 Ad War: Paul Puts Gingrich on the Ropes

This post is part of our guest series from Inkwell Strategies, a professional speechwriting firm, analyzing the 2012 campaign ad war. 

Ron Paul may not stand a chance at the Republican presidential nomination, but he sure has a knack for inserting himself into the conversation. His just-released attack on newfound frontrunner Newt Gingrich has been one of today’s hottest links.

While the smart money has been on Mitt Romney stepping up his attacks on Gingrich, it was the Paul campaign that delivered a withering punch.

Like many of the attack ads we’ve seen this cycle, this one uses Gingrich’s own words against him. From budget plans to healthcare, the video methodically attacks Gingrich for his “serial hypocrisy.”

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Did Race Impact the 2008 Election?

A new Harvard research paper by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz concludes that “racial animus” cost President Obama three to five percentage points of the popular vote in the 2008 presidential election.

Racial bias was found in two ways: Some Democrats stayed home rather than vote for Obama and a similar number who wouldn’t have voted turned out for Sen. John McCain. However, this was partially offset by an increase in turnout among black voters.

“The cost of racial animus was not decisive in the 2008 election. But a four percentage point loss by the winning candidate would have changed the result in the majority of post-war presidential elections.”

Perry Mocks His Brain Freeze

Rick Perry cleverly pokes fun at his debate “brain freeze” in a new ad in advance of his appearance on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Maggie Haberman: “The spot will basically roadblock Leno’s show as the lead-in and lead-out ad in the Iowa markets, which is where Perry is on air. Perry’s campaign also expects Leno to use the brain phrase for comic relief at the beginning, although I’m not sure how.”

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Gingrich Surges in National Poll

The latest Rasmussen survey shows Newt Gingrich crushing Mitt Romney nationally, 38% to 17%. It’s the largest lead any GOP frontrunner has had this cycle.

No other candidate reaches double-digits.

Cain Seeks Accuser’s Phone Records

Lawyers for Herman Cain sent a letter to the woman who accused him of a 13 year extramarital affair asking for her phone records to “test her credibility and motive” for coming forward to the media, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports.

Meanwhile, John DiStaso spoke to a prominent Cain supporter in New Hampshire who reports Cain told him that “today and tomorrow there will be releases of very important information concerning this woman and her claims and he said it will be good news for Herman Cain.”

Harkin Says Obama “Silent Cheering” for Gingrich

Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) held a telephone conference call with reporters and called the prospect of Newt Gingrich winning the Republican nomination as “heaven-sent.”

Said Harkin: “Newt has never been one to engage mind before opening mouth. He engages mouth before engaging his mind sometimes, most of the time. That doesn’t bode well for him at all. I think there’s some, what I’m picking up around here is there’s a lot of quiet, silent cheering in the Obama Administration and the Obama campaign for Newt to get the nomination. It would be just be heaven-sent if he got the nomination.”

He elaborated: “Someone once described the prospect of Newt getting the nomination, saying that, ‘Imagine that you’re standing in front of a door and behind that door all these suitcases are piled and you open the door and all the suitcases come tumbling out.’ Of course, I didn’t know what they were talking about. He said, ‘Baggage, he has a lot of baggage and once he gets up there all that baggage comes tumbling out.'”

Bonus Quote of the Day

“I’m so scared of this anti-Wall Street effort. I’m frightened to death.”

— GOP strategist Frank Luntz, quoted by Yahoo News, noting the Occupy Wall Street protests are “having an impact on what the American people think of capitalism.”

 

Gingrich Has Huge Lead in Florida

A new American Research Group poll in Florida shows Newt Gingrich leading the Republican presidential field with 50%, followed by Mitt Romney at 19% and Herman Cain at 10%.

It’s the third poll in two days — following Insider Advantage and Public Policy Polling — to show Gingrich crushing his rivals in Florida.

 

Romney on Defense

John Avlon notes Mitt Romney’s “awkward interview” with Bret Baier “revealed the irritability of a man accustomed to being in control who’s watching his plans fall apart in public.”

“In politics, as in sports, the best defense is a good offense, and the Romney camp will need to pivot off the inevitability strategy hard if it wants to reverse this broad-based decline. There is still plenty of time, but it is later than they think. The real political news this week isn’t Herman Cain’s latest scandal; it’s the GOP’s presumptive frontrunner being forced to contemplate his political mortality.”

 

Warren Leads in Massachusetts

A new University of Massachusetts Amherst poll finds Elizabeth Warren (D) leading Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) in the race for U.S. Senate, 43% to 39%.

Key finding: “The poll finds Warren is drawing strong support from women, middle-to-low income residents and younger voters. Brown maintains a large lead among Independent voters while Warren is getting overwhelming support from Democratic voters in Massachusetts.”

Said political scientist Brian Schaffner: “These numbers could mean trouble for Scott Brown. The race is a dead heat and his support is well under 50 percent, which usually means difficulty for an incumbent, especially this far out from Election Day.”

 

Paul Tries to Take Out Gingrich

Ron Paul released a brutal video that attempts to expose the hypocrisy of Newt Gingrich. Somewhere Mitt Romney is smiling.

NPR: “The ad uses several instances where Gingrich either aligned himself with liberals… It also bashes Gingrich for engaging in the kind of Washington insider behavior he has criticized in others, like his being paid at least $1.5 million by Freddie Mac, one of the troubled mortgage giants.”

Dave Weigel: “If you’re on the DNC/Obama email lists, you notice that the other team doesn’t bother attacking Newt. This isn’t complicated. They worry about Romney. They don’t worry about facing Gingrich.”

See more…

 

Romney Complained About Interview

Fox News anchor Bret Baier told Bill O’Reilly that Mitt Romney complained to him repeatedly about his contentious interview after it was finished.

Romney told Baier he was “overly aggressive” and then sought Baier out to complain again. He said his questions were “uncalled for.”

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What Happened to Rick Perry?

Vanity Fair: “The most intriguing explanation for Perry’s collapse has been quietly circulating in Austin for weeks. This theory suggests that the governor is suffering from the after effects of his low-back surgery in July, six weeks before he announced his candidacy; his surgeon, a friend who operates a Houston ‘medical day spa’ specializing in liposuction and laser hair removal, fused two of Perry’s vertebrae and then injected the governor — for the first time in the surgeon’s career — with two teaspoonfuls of stem cells that had previously been cultured from fatty tissue taken from Perry’s hip.”

Notes Paul Burka of Texas Monthy: “Ever since, and you saw this at the very first debate, he just seemed to be very uncomfortable, you know, twisting his torso. I think he’s got back pain and may be taking medication for it. He is not on his game. He stopped wearing [his trademark black cowboy] boots and started wearing orthopedic shoes and a back brace. Of course, the campaign denies there is any problem. But he doesn’t seem to have any energy. He just does not look like the same man to me. It’s shocking.”

 

Cheap Primary Defies Predictions

“Even as experts predict that the 2012 presidential race will be the most expensive in U.S. history, a funny thing is happening on the way to the Republican nomination: It’s becoming one of the cheapest primaries in a more than a decade,” Bloomberg reports.

“The top nine Republican candidates spent $53 million through September, compared with $132 million spent at the same time four years ago. The sum is even lower than totals reported during the same period in the 2004 and 2000 primaries — when most candidates still were abiding by campaign spending limits in order to receive public matching money.”

 

Biden Keeps Options Open for 2016

In an interview on the Today Show, Vice President Joe Biden once again left the door open for running for president in 2016.

Said Biden: “I am never ready to close the door on anything. I am intent on reelecting Barack Obama president of the United States of America. The rest will take care of itself.”

 

Quote of the Day

“And so I think, whereas I would have thought originally it was going to be Mitt and not-Mitt, I think it’s going to — it may turn out to be Newt and not-Newt. And that’s a very different formula than, frankly — I mean we’re having to redesign our campaign strategy because we’re at least 60 days ahead of where I thought we’d be.”

— Newt Gingrich, in an interview with Fox News.

 

Gingrich Will Meet Trump

Newt Gingrich will meet with Donald Trump in New York City next Monday, Politico reports. He follows Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann in paying a visit to the New York businessman in an effort to win his endorsement.

Monday also happens to be the publication date for Trump’s new book Time To Get Tough: Making America #1 Again.

 

Cain Still Hasn’t Sat Down with His Wife

Herman Cain admitted that he still hasn’t had the chance to sit down with his wife Gloria to “walk through” the latest allegations from a woman saying she had a 13-year affair with him, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Said Cain: “I will do that when I get back home on Friday.”

 

Romney Running Ads in Iowa

Mitt Romney ends any speculation he isn’t running to win the Iowa caucuses by launching his first ad in the Hawkeye state.

The AP notes the ad “underscores Romney’s late fall ramp-up in Iowa, which he has visited more frequently in recent weeks after traveling to the state only twice in the first eight months of the year. He kept a lower profile this year in Iowa than four years ago, in part to control expectations.”

Mark Halperin: “Now that Romney is buying Iowa TV time, the expectations game is close to over. He can survive an Iowa loss, for sure. And he can still win Iowa, and almost certainly effectively end the nomination battle. But there is no hiding from the outcome any more. December’s two big debates are in the Hawkeye State, and the stakes on them have now been raised.”

See more…

 

Huckabee Won’t Endorse Before Iowa

Mike Huckabee told Yahoo News he isn’t interested in trying to play kingmaker in the Republican presidential primaries.

Said Huckabee: “I really doubt I will endorse anyone in the primary process. I’m still holding the right to do that, but I don’t see at this point a reason it makes a whole lot of sense for me.”

He also admitted some moments of regret for not running himself, saying, “I could well be on my way to the nomination.”

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

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