POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 4/11

Bonus Quote of the Day

“Yes, President Obama is very likable to most people, if you just look at him and his family. But if you look at his policies, which is what most people disagree with, it’s a different story. And I think many men are much more familiar with the failed policies than a lot of other people, as well as the general public.”

— Herman Cain, in a Fox News interview, attributing the gender gap to the fact that men are more familiar with policy, while “others” only know about the president’s family.

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Every Candidate Endorsed by God Lost to Mitt Romney

Dan Amira points out that God’s endorsement “somehow failed to secure” the GOP presidential nomination for Rick SantorumHerman CainMichele Bachmann, and Rick Perry.

“It is unclear at this point whether God will even bother to offer anyone his apparently useless endorsement in the general election.”

Gingrich’s Check Bounces

The $500 check that Newt Gingrich used to pay the filing fee for Utah’s Republican presidential primary bounced, the Salt Lake Tribune reports.

“Utah Elections Director Mark Thomas said a designated agent for the Gingrich campaign brought the filing papers and a check for $500 in March, but after the check was deposited, the state was notified by the bank that the check had bounced. He said the office has tried to contact the Gingrich campaign through the telephone number and email provided on the application, but have not received a response.”

Santorum Will Suspend Campaign

Rick Santorum told staffers and supporters that he will suspend his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, CNN reports.

A “senior source” in the Mitt Romney campaign confirms to NBC News that the front-runner received a call from Santorum today.

Romney’s statement: “Senator Santorum is an able and worthy competitor, and I congratulate him on the campaign he ran.”

What is a Suspended Campaign?

From the political dictionary: suspended campaign.

Romney and His Foxtrotter

A mole gives Gawker video of Mitt Romney and Sean Hannity bantering before the taping of a Fox News interview in February.

“Of note: Romney professes his and his wife Ann’s well-known love of horseriding, praising the qualities of the ‘Austrian Warmbloods’ that his wife rides — they are ‘dressage’ horses, he notes — while maintaining his own preference for the ‘smoother gait’ of his own ‘Missouri foxtrotter.’ Now there’s nothing wrong with Mitt and his wife loving horseback riding. But remember this video next time Romney attacks Obama for golfing. The inherent elitism and snootiness of golf is NOTHING compared to competitive horseback riding. And I think Mitt loses points with the GOP base for his correct pronunciation of dressage. To GOP-voter ears it sounds not only gay, but even worse, French.”

BuzzFeed isolates the part where Romney tries to do an impression of a gay man asking for a pink tie.

Bush Doesn’t Miss the White House

When asked at a conference in New York whether he misses being president, Forbesreports George W. Bush said, “I really don’t.”

But Bush added that “it was really inconvenient having to stop at stop lights [on the way to the conference]. I guess I miss that.”

Santorum’s Overachievement

Steve Benen: “Stepping back and considering the larger context, it may be tempting to dismiss Santorum’s presidential campaign as something of a joke. It was underfunded and disorganized, led by an unfocused candidate pushing a cultural/social message that seemed badly out of step with voters’ priorities. Even when Santorum enjoyed the national lead for a brief time, there was always a lingering sense that his frontrunner status could not and would not last.”

“But in a strange sort of way, I consider the Santorum campaign one of the most impressive things I’ve seen in presidential politics in quite a while… Despite having very little money, no staff, no organization, few endorsements, an unimpressive legislative record, and a weak message, Rick Santorum managed to beat Mitt Romney 10 times during the Republican nominating race (Iowa, Colorado, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Kansas, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana). The total reaches 11 if you include Missouri’s pseudo primary in February.”

“That’s pretty amazing when you think about it.”

Obama Opens Up Big Lead in Colorado

A new Public Policy Polling survey in Colorado shows President Obama opening up a 13 point lead over Mitt Romney.

In December, Obama led by just two points, 47% to 45%.

The Curse of Ideological Purity

Michael Gerson: “The GOP’s main problem is not the contraceptive issue; it is the perception that it has become too ideological on many issues. Women and independent voters have seen a party enthusiastically confirming its most damaging stereotypes. The composite Republican candidate — reflecting the party’s ideological mean — has been harsh on immigration, confrontational on social issues, simplistic in condemning government and silent on the struggles of the poor. How many women would find this profile appealing on eHarmony?”

“This is the hidden curse of the Republican congressional triumph of 2010. Republican activists came to believe that purity is all that is necessary for victory. But a presidential candidate, it turns out, requires a broader ideological attraction than your average tea party House freshman.”

Warren Clings to Razor Thin Lead in Massachussetts

A new Rasmussen survey in Massachusetts finds Elizabeth Warren (D) has an edge over Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA), 46% to 45%.

Ryan Claims Secret Democratic Support

House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan told BuzzFeed that a dozen elected Democrats secretly support his plan to cut entitlement spending and privatize some benefits — but he wouldn’t name “because I don’t want to get them in trouble.”

Would Reagan Support the Buffett Rule?

video from the wayback machine suggests Ronald Reagan would have backed the same tax proposal President Obama supports — that the Warren Buffetts of the world don’t pay a lower effective tax rate (due to investment income) than their secretaries do.

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Quote of the Day

“I wish they weren’t called the ‘Bush tax cuts.’ If they were called some other body’s tax cuts, they’re probably less likely to be raised.”

— Former President George W. Bush, quoted by Forbes.

Marlins Suspend Manager over Castro Comments

The Miami Marlins announced that they have suspended manager Ozzie Guillen for five games effective immediately after telling Time magazine that he has respect for and “loves” Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, the Miami Herald reports.

“In his nine years as a big-league manager, Guillen has spit out insult after insult in his blunt style, offending, among others, gays, opponents of illegal immigration and even fellow Venezuelans. Guillen has managed to get away with his polarizing screeds by offering up contrition after the fact. But not even Guillen can hug the third rail of Miami discourse — praising Cuban leader Fidel Castro — without paying a steep price.”

The Case for Romney Picking Portman

Add Major Garrett to the list of people who think Mitt Romney will choose Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) as his running mate.

“There are real downsides and risks to a Portman pick expressed by Republicans and Democrats alike, but given different weight and emphasis: Portman’s a bore, and their ticket would be boredom squared, or squares squared; he offers nothing to women voters or Latino voters; he carries the taint of Bush-Cheney policies; and he’s not conservative enough for the Tea Party. To one degree or another, these are all valid complaints. But Romney has the same perceived ‘flaws’ and he’s going to win the nomination.”

“Portman can’t fix Romney’s flaws. Neither can anyone else. That means all other things being equal, Romney will look for someone he knows and trusts; who has delivered for him; who can put a vital swing state in play; who can immediately help him tackle the hardest issues if he’s elected; and whose selection tells the country Romney’s first big decision as a nominee wasn’t a gasket-blowing gamble or one festooned with the garish and outmoded trappings of regional or ideological balance.”

Paul Slams Rivals in New Ad

Ron Paul has an amusing new ad in Texas that hits Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, and Mitt Romney.

“Let’s get this straight: We’re debating between a big-spending, debt-ceiling-raising fiscal liberal. A moon colony guy. A moderate from Massachusetts. Or a Texan with a real plan to balance the budget.”

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Report Says Christie Lied to Stop Project

A new report says New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) “exaggerated when he declared that unforeseen costs to the state were forcing him to cancel the new train tunnel planned to relieve congested routes across the Hudson River,” the New York Times reports.

“Christie also misstated New Jersey’s share of the costs: he said the state would pay 70 percent of the project; the report found that New Jersey was paying 14.4 percent.”

Obama Holds Key Leads Over Romney

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds President Obama has double-digit leads over Mitt Romney on who would do a better job of protecting the middle class, handling international affairs and dealing with health care. On personal traits, the president’s edge is even bigger: He has a better than 2-to-1 advantage as the more friendly and likable of the two, and nearly that margin as “more inspiring.”

However, on the economy and jobs “the contest is considerably more competitive, with about as many trusting Romney on the issues as Obama.”

Overall, among registered voters, Obama leads Romney 51% to 44%.

Key finding: “Romney faces a huge deficit among female voters, one that more than negates his advantage among men and represents one of the biggest challenges he and his advisers face as they turn toward the November election. Obama’s edge among women gives him a clear lead among all registered voters in a matchup with Romney.”

A new Investor’s Business Daily/Christian Science Monitor/TIPP poll shows President Obama holding an eight point advantage over Mitt Romney, 46% to 38%.

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