POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 7/9
“Americans need to ask themselves: why does an American businessman need a Swiss bank account and secretive investments like that?”
— DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, quoted by Politico, turning up the heat on Mitt Romney’s investment disclosure.
“Discord at the Supreme Court is deep and personal after Chief Justice John Roberts’ surprise decision to side with the liberal justices in upholding a large portion of the president’s health care plan. This discord is going to affect this Court for a long time — and no one has any idea how it will be resolved,” CBS News reports.
“Conservatives feel a sense of betrayal. They feel that Roberts changed his mind for the wrong reasons. If Roberts had been with the liberals from the beginning, sources tell me that would have been one thing; but switching his position — and relatively late in the process — infuriated the conservatives.”
“Of course it’s unclear why he switched. He may have been focused solely on the law. But that is not what some of his colleagues believe.”
A new USA Today/Gallup poll finds President Obama holds a small advantage over Mitt Romney, 47% to 45%, in 12 key states. It’s the same margin found in a May poll.
When zooming out to include voters from the other states, the gap expands to a four-point margin in favor of Obama, 48% to 44%.
Meanwhile, a new Investors Business Daily/Christian Science Monitor poll shows Obama leading nationally by just one point, 43% to 43%.
“The American people probably aren’t going to fall in love with Mitt Romney.”
— House Speaker John Boehner, quoted by Roll Call.
The Obama re-election campaign turned the tables on Mitt Romney releasing a new adattacking him on China, until now a favorite issue for Republicans.
The AP notes the 30-second spot opens with a clip of Romney during a 2011 Republican primary debate. He says “the Chinese are smiling all the way to the bank taking our jobs and taking a lot of our future. And I am not willing to let that happen.”
A narrator responds that Romney “made a fortune letting it happen.”
Associated Press: “History repeats itself, until it doesn’t. That musty saw is worth remembering as pundits speculate on whether the lumbering economy will doom the re-election hopes of President Barack Obama, who has shown a knack for beating odds and breaking barriers…”
“There’s a problem with applying historical precedents and conventional wisdom to Obama. He sometimes defies them.”
Donald Trump hasn’t decided whether he’ll attend the Republican national convention,Politico reports.
Said a top aide: “He’s considering it. Many people want him to go, but he’s considering it. He’s got an extremely busy schedule and it all depends on other commitments that he has.”
Just two months ago Trump himself floated the idea of being the keynote speaker.
Sources close to Mitt Romney tell the New York Daily News “that during a three-day retreat he hosted late last month for big-time Republican contributors and party mandarins at Park City, Utah, the candidate also found time to squeeze in the first two rounds of what staffers call ‘debate prep.'”
“Romney convened six to eight campaign aides around a conference table… They sorted through a variety of topics sure to come up in the three Presidential debates, like the state of the economy and the war in Afghanistan, and kicked around the best ‘test responses’ to questions they expect Obama and debate moderators will toss at the ex-Massachusetts governor.”
“More such encounters are expected over the summer, but what one source called ‘podium practices’ with an Obama surrogate won’t happen for awhile — mainly because Romney doesn’t care for them all that much.”
The New York Times runs a must-read story about Priorities USA Action, the pro-Obama super-PAC.
A key takeaway is that while most voters have well-defined opinions about President Obama, undecided voters have almost no opinion about Mitt Romney: “While conducting a different focus group — this one with non-college-educated Milwaukee voters on the eve of Wisconsin’s April 3 primary — Burton and Sweeney were surprised to learn that even after Romney had spent months campaigning, many in the group could not recognize his face, much less characterize his positions.”
Jonathan Chait notes the Priorities research “shows that the crucial first step is to introduce and define Romney. The basic theme of Romney as a super-rich guy who sees the world through the lens of his own class seems like a powerful and roughly accurate one. The attacks on Romney’s business career fit with the theme… Once they’ve established that frame for voters to understand Romney, then they have set the stage for a closing attack that focuses on the policy contrast.”
Joshua Green notes that Mitt Romney’s risk avoidance — as seen through his inability to take a clear stand on any issue — is more than a campaign strategy, it’s how he made a fortune as head of Bain Capital.
“A few years ago, a former partner at Bain Capital with Romney explained to me that this impulse to be ‘paranoidly downside risk-averse’ had been key to Bain’s early success. In the mid-1980s, he said, once this success was evident, the firm conducted a study to better understand what had brought it about. Two things jumped out: The failure rate of their deals was ‘almost zero.’ And, he said, ‘there was no deal we did in the first years that did not have incredible downside protection — you’d have assets that, in the worst case, you could sell for 90 percent of what you paid for it.'”
Jon Huntsman says he won’t attend the Republican national convention “or future gatherings until the party starts to tackle the bigger issues,” the Salt Lake Tribune reports.
Said Huntsman: “I will not be attending this year’s convention, nor any Republican convention in the future, until the party focuses on a bigger, bolder, more confident future for the United States — a future based on problem solving, inclusiveness, and a willingness to address the trust deficit, which is every bit as corrosive as our fiscal and economic deficits.”
He added: “I encourage a return to the party we have been in the past, from Lincoln right on through to Reagan, that was always willing to put our country before politics.”
President Obama “is taking a more confrontational tone with Mitt Romney over his varying positions on health-care reform, suggesting his Republican opponent is more concerned about politics than principles when it comes to an issue that has been a major point of contention between the two candidates,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
Said Obama, in an interview with WLWT-TV: “So the question becomes, are you doing that because of politics? Are you abandoning a principle that you fought for, for six years simply because you’re getting pressure for two days from Rush Limbaugh or some critics in Washington?”
He added :”One of the things that you learn as president is that what you say matters and your principles matter. And sometimes, you’ve got to fight for things that you believe in and you can’t just switch on a dime.”Explore posts in the same categories: Candidates, National, Politics