From Clinton’s Mouth To Rove’s Ad
October 04, 2011
When Barack Obama arrives in St. Louis tonight for a couple of fundraisers, he will be greeted by a targeted media hit from American Crossroads, the outside group led by Karl Rove that had such an impact in the 2010 midterms and is gearing up for the same next year. The group's new ad, a $50,000 buy in Missouri, will attack Obama's jobs plan by invoking the recent words of the president's ever-helpful fellow Democrat: Bill Clinton.
“He’s Just Not Like That”
October 03, 2011
Something about Rick Perry seems to inspire conversation that is awfully elemental. First, he was praying for rain. Then there were the Texas wildfires last month, and the question of whether or not they were related to the man-made climate change in which Perry does not believe. And now comes the rock. We'll leave it to others to litigate just exactly when a certain offensive word was visible on the boulder at the entrance to piece of land that Perry and his father starting leasing as a hunting ranch starting in the 1980s.
The Permanent Candidate
September 28, 2011
What’s driving Rick Perry?
The Shifting GOP Nominating Calendar Will Produce a Knockout Victory—Or an Extended Slugfest
July 28, 2011
When I last wrote about the schedule of Republican presidential nominating contests back in April, there were two dynamics that appeared to be shaping the calendar: first, the usual “frontloading” temptation of states to run to the front of the line in order to have an impact on the results, which both national parties have been fighting in recent years with less than brilliant success; and second, a more unusual “backloading” phenomenon, where other states were delaying primaries or caucuses for their own reasons, often the money savings associated with holding the contests in conjunction wi
"Politifact" Unfairly Attacks The GOP
June 24, 2011
Republicans have been slamming Democrats for their vote to cut $500 billion out of Medicare as part of the Affordable Care Act: The NRSC revised and reissued a three-day-old news release that targeted virtually identical statements at Brown, of Ohio, and four other senators who all are Democrats up for re-election next year: Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Jon Tester of Montana, Ben Cardin of Maryland and Bill Nelson of Florida. "Despite Sherrod Brown's transparent political strategy to mislead Ohio seniors and demagogue Medicare, this serves as another reminder he is the only candidate in Ohio
A Good Joke Spoiled
June 23, 2011
Autobiography of Mark Twain: Volume 1By Mark Twain Edited by Harriet Elinor Smith (University of California Press, 736 pp., $34.95) It is hard to think of another writer as great as Mark Twain who did so many things that even merely good writers are not supposed to do. Great writers are not meant to write bad books, much less publish them. Twain not only published a lot of bad books, he doesn’t appear to have noticed the difference between his good ones and his bad ones. Great writers are not meant to care more about money than art.
Turning FEMA Around
May 28, 2011
It’s not exactly the Rapture, but the tornadoes that have been tearing through the Midwest and South this year certainly have an end-times feel to them. Just this past Sunday, an EF-5 level tornado (that’s as fierce as it gets) plowed through Joplin, Missouri, killing at least 125 people, flaying the bark off trees, crumpling cars like aluminum cans, and basically flattening everything in its six-mile path.
The Potential Disaster Aid Disaster
May 27, 2011
Some House Republicans want to make disaster aid contingent upon finding offsetting cuts elsewhere: While much of Joplin, Mo., is still under rubble from a devastating tornado, conservatives inCongress are starting to argue for a tougher approach to disaster aid, demanding that any funding be offset by cutting federal money elsewhere. Disasters will no longer be considered “emergencies” if conservatives win this battle to redefine the way Congress funds aid packages for states and cities stricken by natural and man-made catastrophes. The problem, of course, is that spending exists because it e
On Sunday, a fierce tornado slammed into Joplin, Missouri, killing 116 people, the highest death toll from a tornado in sixty years. Sunday's tornado brings the national death toll from tornadoes to 481 so far this year, the highest total ever recorded this early in a year. But is this just a higher incidence of strong tornadoes, or more overall? The latter, at least according to some astonishing data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association's National Climatic Data Center.
Senate Democratic Strategery
May 19, 2011
You know how Republicans in Congress take extreme positions, thereby shifting the terms of debate so that any compromise lands on their side? The good news is that Senate Democrats are finally reciprocating. The bad news is that they're announcing through the media that this is their plan: Senate Democrats are using their proposal to raise taxes on millionaires as a stalking-horse to force Republicans to accept other tax increases. Democratic officials privately acknowledge that raising personal income tax rates on the wealthy has little chance of passing this Congress.