Jason Zengerle
Senior Editor

Defining Defining Moments Down
December 19, 2007

I thought Fred Thompson had a decent line when he refused to raise his hand at last week's DMR debate, but his campaign evidently thinks it was something much more. From today's NYT: After Mr. Thompson, the former Tennessee senator, told Carolyn Washburn, the moderator, that he was “not doing hand shows today,” in reply to a question about global warming, his campaign renamed the tour “The Clear Conservative Choice: Hands Down!

Why Rasheed Wallace Could Win Iowa
December 18, 2007

Forget Mike Huckabee. Rasheed Wallace gets my vote for the best Merry Christmas video: (H/t P.W.) --Jason Zengerle

December 18, 2007

Jonah Goldberg's set the blog world abuzz with this bit of jacket-copy text from his eagerly awaited Liberal Fascism: The quintessential liberal fascist isn’t an SS storm trooper; it is a female grade-school teacher with an education degree from Brown or Swarthmore. Kieran Healy rightly notes that you can't actually get an education degree from Swarthmore.

Al Sharpton On Line One
December 18, 2007

Say what you will about Al Sharpton--and this magazine certainly has over the years--but the man possesses a keen understanding of what makes him relevant. To wit, see his response to a fairly damning secret FBI tape in which he appears to pledge to help a Philadelphia man with a multi-million dollar business in exchange for a $50,000 campaign contribution: Sharpton doesn't so much proclaim his innocence as his influence. From today's NYT: Former President Bill Clinton, meanwhile, had planned to meet with Mr. Sharpton in South Carolina, where Mr.

More Thoughts On The Rollins-huckabee Marriage
December 14, 2007

Time's Jay Carney, who's much more plugged-in on this stuff than I, offers his thoughts on Huckabee's hiring of Ed Rollins: There are two things to note about this development. First, in Rollins Huckabee gets a heavyweight political operative who knows how to run and win a national political campaign. Rollins was political director to Ronald Reagan in Reagan's first term and ran Reagan's landslide, 49-state re-election victory in 1984. Huckabee is sending the message that he does not intend to win Iowa and then fade away. He is in it to win it.

Did Huckabee Just Hire The Kiss Of Death?
December 14, 2007

Don't worry, Eve, if conservative pundits don't do in Huckabee, his new campaign chairman will: He's just tapped Ed Rollins for the job. Although Rollins helmed Ronald Reagan's landslide reelection effort in 1984, he hasn't had much luck since then--working for a string of losing candidates that has included Ross Perot, Katherine Harris, and KT MacFarland.

The Real Loser In Hillary's Iowa Swoon: Vilsack
December 14, 2007

Via Drudge (who inimitably tags the link 'OBAMA: HILLARY, WE GOT YOUR PRECINCT CAPTAIN. . .' ), I see that the Obama campaign has posted a YouTube video featuring a former Clinton precinct captain in Iowa who's now supporting Obama. One interesting note about this: The woman in the video, Susan Klopfer, is from Mt. Pleasant--which is also the hometown of former Iowa governor (and big Hillary supporter) Tom Vilsack. How bad does it look for Vilsack that his candidate is not only on the verge of losing Iowa, but that this prominent turncoat is one of his neighbors?

How Much Do The Democratic Campaigns Hate Each Other?
December 14, 2007

A lot! At least from the looks of this 'Hardball' clip (via Ezra Klein) featuring Edwards's Joe Trippi, Clinton's Mark Penn, and Obama's David Axelrod. The fireworks start at about the 4:00 mark. It's especially interesting that Trippi seems to spend almost as much time defending Obama from Penn's attacks as he does boosting Edwards. --Jason Zengerle

Email Title Of The Day
December 13, 2007

I just got a blast email from some outfit called the Family Focus Coalition titled: Giuliani and the Ho's Alas, the email merely contains a reprint of a newspaper article about Giuliani's business dealings with the family of controversial casino tycoon Stanley Ho. P.S. That's two "ho" posts in one week--probably some sort of Plank record!  --Jason Zengerle 

Does Ron Paul Secretly Like Mitt Romney?
December 13, 2007

A bit more about those Arkansas Republicans who traveled to Iowa to campaign against Huckabee. The Arkansas Times's John C. Williams has learned the identity of their financial backer: Former state Rep. Randy Minton now says that the moneybags funding the trip is...Ron Paul. Maybe there is a Republican presidential candidate who likes Mitt Romney. --Jason Zengerle