The emerging conventional wisdom among many Democrats takes the form of two equations: 2012 = 2004, and Bain = Swift Boats. There’s also a supporting narrative: The negative campaign against John Kerry fatally weakened his candidacy, securing the victory of an incumbent who could not have won based on his own record. And so, the idea goes, a president whose performance the public doesn’t much like can power his way to a narrow, less than pretty win by eviscerating his challenger. But the evidence in favor of all of these propositions is remarkably thin.
May 18, 2012
Lodge 141 of the Fraternal Order of Police is housed, along with 446 jail cells, inside the Mahoning County Justice Center, a forbidding brick and steel hulk at the edge of the frayed downtown of Youngstown, Ohio. It’s a humble office, but its proprietors have embellished it with a number of rather pointed political decorations.
November 10, 2011
Every politician needs a base. Mitt Romney has the business establishment. Ron Paul has libertarians. Rick Santorum has social conservatives. Michele Bachmann had Tea Partiers for a while, before Herman Cain won them over. But who’s behind Newt Gingrich? ’90s nostalgics? People with a penchant for shoddily researched history? His rise in the polls—from about 6 percent to 12 percent—has only made the question more intriguing.
Has the Tea Party Set a Trap for Rick Perry in South Carolina?
September 01, 2011
At first glance, Labor Day weekend looks like it could be a lot of fun for Rick Perry and his fans. The odds of a Sarah Palin candidacy continue to shrink to irrelevance as she wrestles with incompetent local Tea Party organizers in Iowa over a long-planned appearance just outside Des Moines. Mitt Romney’s temporary triumph in securing top billing at a Tea Party Express event in New Hampshire, meanwhile, is being spoiled by protests from Dick Armey’s FreedomWorks organization.
Does Rick Perry Have It In The Bag?
August 30, 2011
John Ellis thinks so: Once Labor Day has passed, there will be five debates, in quick succession, on the GOP presidential candidates' calendars. These will be important tests for Perry. If at the end of two or three, it's clear that he's every bit the equal of Mitt Romney on matters of policy and politics, then the Perry juggernaut becomes all but unstoppable. Romney's "I'm the only electable one" argument will vanish and the party's base will nominate one of their own. If Perry stumbles badly in the debates, Romney's campaign gets a second wind. Knowing that the only things standing betw
Will More Smog Create Jobs? Republicans Think So.
August 29, 2011
Republicans continue to tout deficit reduction in the form of dramatic, immediate spending cuts as the best way to boost the economy. But with President Obama set to introduce a new jobs agenda after Labor Day, Republicans are now signaling they want to do something else, as well: Get rid of regulations. In a new memo released on Monday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor produced a list of "Top 10 Job-Destroying Regulations," including new rules on pollution, labor organizing, and health insurance.
Will Obama Ever Say What He Should About the Jobs Crisis?
August 25, 2011
The Congressional Budget Office’s semi-annual update on the budget and economic outlook, out on Wednesday, offers sobering news about the next few years. The report’s economic analysis begins by observing that “[t]he slow pace of the current recovery is broadly consistent with international experience of recoveries following financial crises.” The authors cite key impediments to renewed growth—the burden of household debt, the need for financial institutions to restore their capital bases, lack of business confidence, and the glut of vacant homes left over from the construction bubble.
Jobs Program? Here Are 3 Essential Ingredients
August 19, 2011
President Obama’s plan to give a major economic speech after Labor Day means that, finally, Washington is going to have a serious conversation about creating jobs. And it can't come a moment too soon. While Thursday's stock market decline shouldn’t alarm you, the conditions that sparked it should. Of course, whether that conversation on jobs leads to action on jobs is more a question of politics than policy.
Obama to Make Major Jobs Speech
August 17, 2011
Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy Yes, President Obama is going to make a serious push to do something about jobs. It’s going to begin right after Labor Day. White House officials are telling reporters that Obama plans to give a major speech on the economy, right after the holiday weekend. In that speech, the officials are saying, Obama will propose a series of initiatives to bolster the economy and promote higher employment.
Have Republicans Peaked?
September 09, 2010
WASHINGTON—President Obama decided this week to raise the stakes in this fall's election by making the choice about something instead of nothing but anger. In the process, he will confront a deeply embedded media narrative that sees a Republican triumph as all but inevitable.