February 27, 2008

Hillary, It’s your turn to Reject & Denounce

Hillary Clinton, it’s time for you to step up and reject and denounce Adelfa Callejo for her racist remarks about Senator Obama and African-American politicians. During an interview with KTVT in Dallas, Hillary Clinton was asked about Adelfa Callejo who was quoted saying "Obama's problem is that he happens to be black."
She was asked by KTVT in Dallas about a Latina backer who said that black politicians never do anything for Hispanics. Her name is Adelfa Callejo. Apparently she’s 84.
[The question: "She recently told us that African-Americans never help Hispanics when they gain power and influence and that she would never vote for Sen. Obama, and now quoting here she said 'Obama’s problem is that he happens to be black.' How do you react to those comments?"]

The newscaster quoted her saying “Obama’s problem is that he happens to be black.”
Rather than doing the right thing and reject and denounce her comments of her supporter, she laughed it off, according to the transcripts of the interview.
Clinton: "Well obviously I want us judged on our merits. I believe strongly that the fact that we have an Aftrican Ameircan and a woman running for the Democratic niomination is historical and I'm very very proud of that . I wantpeople thought to look beyond, look beyond race and gender, look at our records, look what we stand for, look what we've done and I think that;s what most voters ar looking for."

Q (paraphrase) Is this something you reject and denounce?

"People have every reason to express their opinions. I just don't agree with that. I think that we should be looking at the individuals who are running."

Q - Do you still want her support, though?

Clinton laughed and said, "You know This is a free country. People get to express their opinions. A lot of folks have said really unpleasant things about me over the course of this campaign. You can' take any of that as anything other than an individual opinion."

"I would urge all of my supporters and Sen. Obama's supporters to stay focused on the two of us,. Don't vote on race don't vote on gender, vote on the qualifications each of us present for the presidency."

Q- But you criticized Obama for not rejecting the support from Farrakhan.

"I don't see any comparison at all with what you're referring to and I don't know the facts of what you're telling me over the TV. So I'm just going to repeat that I want people to judge us on the merits."
Well, you are right. There is no comparison between Farrakhan and Callejo. One is an active supporter and involved in your campaign and the other is an private citizen who has no ties to Obama and his campaign.

Shame on you, Hillary Clinton.

It is not good enough, to send a spokesman after the fact to clarify your statements.
Clinton spokesman Doug Hattaway called to say Clinton hadn't heard about the incident, and neither he nor I has confirmed that the TV report was accurate.

"If it was actually said, of course she rejects and denounces it," Hattaway said.
Go and the TV in Texas and reject and denounce Adelfa Callejo and the politics of Karl Rove.

Hillary, Bill Clinton and the whole Clinton campaign needs to go away for the good of the Democratic Party and for the good for American people.

I can’t wait in till March 4th, where the voters will get the chance to reject and denounce Hillary Clinton.

February 24, 2008

Quote of the Day

Barack Obama responds to Hillary Clinton latest outburst on the campaign trail.
"You can’t be for something or take credit for an administration and 35 years of experience and then when you run for president suggest somehow you didn’t really mean what you said back then," Obama said to applause at a rally of about 5,000. "It doesn't work that way." [..]

"The truth is that Sen. Clinton supported NAFTA before she ran for president. That is indisupatable. She called it 'a victory' in her book. She told people it has proved its worth. Those are facts."

Hillary Clinton is full of it.

Via Kid Oakland

Top Five

A quick rundown of the posts I have read during my travels around the series of tubes.

- Frank Rich:
Clinton fans don’t see their standard-bearer’s troubles this way. In their view, their highly substantive candidate was unfairly undone by a lightweight showboat who got a free ride from an often misogynist press and from naïve young people who lap up messianic language as if it were Jim Jones’s Kool-Aid. Or as Mrs. Clinton frames it, Senator Obama is all about empty words while she is all about action and hard work.

But it’s the Clinton strategists, not the Obama voters, who drank the Kool-Aid. The Obama campaign is not a vaporous cult; it’s a lean and mean political machine that gets the job done. The Clinton camp has been the slacker in this race, more words than action, and its candidate’s message, for all its purported high-mindedness, was and is self-immolating.
- The Carpetbagger Report: Armstrong Williams is full of it.

- Talking Points Memo: Republican Rep. Jack Kingston is a shameless hack.

- Crooks & Liars: Frank Luntz of Fox News has sexual issues he needs to work out away from the cameras. Seriously, get some help.

- Windy City Gridiron: Chicago Bears and Rex Grossman continue their love affair. Sigh.

February 23, 2008

Shame on you, Hillary Clinton

For tying to stiff people working for a living while your overpriced and underperforming Campaign lives the high life.
It was just $2,492.63, a pittance, really, alongside million-dollar television buys and direct mail drops.

But with Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s bid for the Democratic presidential nomination enduring a rough patch, Peter Semetis, the owner of a deli and catering business in Lower Manhattan, had been following the news and growing increasingly worried that he was not going to be paid for the assorted breakfast trays, coffee, tea and orange juice he had provided the campaign for an event in mid-December.

“I’m afraid of her dropping out of the campaign and me becoming a casualty,” Mr. Semetis said.

So on Thursday, he went to small claims court and filed suit. Mr. Semetis, 53, said he was hardly a political pundit but like others across the country, he had become caught up in the election in the last year and was able to offer some analysis. “There is potential for her to lose Texas,” he said — an assessment not at odds with the polls — “which would pretty much force her to quit.”
And, what a high life it is.
Nearly $100,000 went for party platters and groceries before the Iowa caucuses, even though the partying mood evaporated quickly. Rooms at the Bellagio luxury hotel in Las Vegas consumed more than $25,000; the Four Seasons, another $5,000. And top consultants collected about $5 million in January, a month of crucial expenses and tough fund-raising.

Hillary Clinton Goes on the Attack

During a Campaign stop in Ohio with Democratic Governor Ted Strickland, Hillary Clinton unleashed one of her last ditch effort to stop Obama march towards the nomination.
Hillary Rodham Clinton said Saturday that a pair of mailings sent to voters by rival Barack Obama's campaign criticizing her health care plan and trade views are false, misleading and a betrayal of his pledge to practice a new style of politics.

"Shame on you, Barack Obama. It is time you ran a campaign consistent with your messages in public — that's what I expect from you," Clinton said angrily, waving the mailings in the air.

"Meet me in Ohio, and let's have a debate about your tactics," she added.
It’s going to get ugly. Senator Clinton is going to try to link the Democratic Senator of Illinois, Barack Obama, to Republican Karl Rove.
Enough about the speeches, and the big rallies, and then using tactics right out of Karl Rove's playbook. This is wrong and every Democrat should be outraged," Clinton said.
And to President George W. Bush.
Before speaking to reporters, Clinton sought to draw parallels to an untested Bush in 2000 and Obama.

“So, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me,” Clinton said while her loyal ally, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, also tried to draw a contrast between Clinton and Obama by saying, “She just knows more. She knows more.” [..]

“Do you think people voting in 2000 knew what they were getting?” she said, referring to Bush’s first-term bid for the presidency as a governor of Texas. “People thought they were getting a compassionate conservative. It turned out he was neither. We’ve been living with the consequences of those mistakes.” [..]

He promised change as a compassionate conservative and the American people got shafted and we’re going to have to make up for it,” she said.

Without mentioning Obama’s name, Clinton contended her rival has sought to portray having experience as “a disadvantage” and something “that doesn’t count for much anymore.” But she said, if a person needs a serious operation, they don’t ask for a surgeon who’s never performed the procedure.
Let’s ask ourselves if Hillary Clinton and George W. Bush know what they were getting into in Iraq?

People, let’s get real. Senator Clinton went along with George W. Bush and the neoconservatives march toward war with Iraq not based on the facts on the ground, but on politics. She started to run for the general election way back in 2002. Hillary Clinton thought that no one would ever dare to stand between her and the Democratic nomination.

The politics of Triangulation at it best.

Barack Obama opposed Hillary Clinton and George W. Bush’s Iraq war not when the American people started to question the war, but from day one.
I don’t oppose all wars.

After September 11th, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this Administration’s pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such a tragedy from happening again.

I don’t oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.

What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income – to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.

That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.
Hillary Clinton the Democratic Senator of New York is the one who is using Karl Rove tactics. She can jump up and down trying to distract us with her smears, but we will not be fooled again. Unlike Senator Clinton with her 35 years of experience, Senator Obama has the judgment to lead and run a campaign from the bottom up not Mark Penn on down.

February 21, 2008

John 'McLovin' McCain

Matthew Yglesias:
Certainly it'd be a bit rich of McCain to get outraged that anyone would even suggest that he might engage in sexual improprieties. After all, it's well known that he repeatedly cheated on his first wife Carol, of a number of years, with a variety of women, before eventually dumping her for a much-younger heiress whose family fortune was able to help finance his political career. That's well known, I should say, except to the electorate, who would probably find that this sort of behavior detracts from McCain's "character" appeal.
Nicholas D. Kristof:
Although he was still living with his wife, he was aggressively courting a 25-year-old woman who was as beautiful as she was rich.

That troubled period was perhaps the crucial turning point in John McCain's life, and the decisions that he made then started him on the course that he hopes will take him to the White House in January. In just a few years from those times of soul-searching in his office as Navy liaison to the Senate, Mr. McCain would have a new wife, a new home state and a bright new political star as president of the class of newly elected Republican members of the House of Representatives.

For a candidate running on character and biography, it is also an awkward time to remember: Mr. McCain abandoned his wife, who had reared their three children while he was in Vietnamese prisons, and he then began his political career with the resources of his new wife's family.

Viva Obama!

Amigos De Obama

Let’s Get Real

Senator Obama only wins in elections that are contested.
Yeah, but this just goes to show that Obama only wins in states that hold contested elections. Sure, he wins big in caucus states, he wins big in primary states, he wins big when turnout is low, and he wins big with record-high turnout. But what the Obama-worshipping media is overlooking is that in each of the 25 state contests Obama has won so far, his name appeared on the ballot. It's time to stop giving Obama a pass on this critical issue.

Remember, if Hillary Clinton wins the Democratic nomination, Barack Obama's name will not be on the ballot in November. And only Hillary Clinton has demonstrated that she can win when Obama's name is not on the ballot. In fact, she's undefeated in contests where Obama is not on the ballot, making her clearly the more electable general-election candidate.

February 20, 2008

McCain: Confuse Leadership?

Last night, Republican John McCain echoed President Bush attacks on Senator Obama in this Wisconsin victory speech.
Or will we risk the confused leadership of an inexperienced candidate who once suggested invading our ally, Pakistan, and sitting down without pre-conditions or clear purpose with enemies who support terrorists and are intent on destabilizing the world by acquiring nuclear weapons?
Just like President Bush, McCain is full of it. It got so bad, even the very serious Joe Klein calls McCain attacks utter nonsense.
I'm sure, Barack Obama will explain that any meetings with Iranian leaders will be fully prepped by staff in advance, including advance meetings at the ministerial level...but what about the first part of the quote? Utter nonsense. Here's what Obama actually said:
I understand that President Musharraf has his own challenges. But let me make this clear. There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an Al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will.
And, in fact, Obama was merely saying that he supported current U.S. policy. A month ago, for example, a bomb launched from a CIA predator drone killed the Al Qaeda leader Abu Laith al-Libi in Pakistan. Was McCain opposed to that?
Barack Obama is pushing back against Republican talking points in a way Hillary Clinton would not be able to do. Matthew Yglesias has a summary of conference call with Susan Rice in which she counters McCain and Clinton.
One key point of emphasis was the strange notion coming from the McCain campaign that talking about focused counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan is irresponsible, whereas randomly threatening to start new wars is the height of good sense. As she put it "it's a strange contrast -- he says that somehow it's naive for a presidential candidate to outline how he would deal with that crucial national security challenge, but it's appropriate for him to joke about starting another war." A reporter from the Washington Times challenged her on the "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" business saying McCain was joking. Rice responds that "if he wants to say that he was joking and that's the kind of joke he thinks is funny, that's his perogative." [..]

More broadly, on experience there's a three-pronged attack. First, Obama does have experience, with Rice citing the fact that he authored "crucial legislation to secure the United States from the threat of loose nuclear materials" and serves on committees and subcommittees dealing with foreign relations, veterans affairs, and homeland security. Second, this means that Obama has actually "acquired more traditional washington foreign policy experience" than most presidents including Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter (Carter in fact served on a nuclear sub and I'm told this gave him a better understanding of nuclear issues than presidents before or after).

Third, there's more to life than being a prisoner of DC conventional wisdom -- "McCain, like Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney may have years of Washington experience" but they've all made "flawed judgments and as a consequence we're less safe." In a crucial point, Rice observed (emphasis added) that a McCain administration would be "very much a continuation and intensification of the failed Bush policy, remaining in Iraq indefinitely not investing adequately in Afghanistan." According to Rice we need to "show that we have learned from our mistakes in Iraq and elsewhere and are prepared to cooperate and collaborate on the challenges we face," namely al-Qaeda, nuclear proliferation, and climate change.
Steve Benen points out; does anyone seriously believe these are effective lines of attack? Obama wants to kill terrorists and try diplomacy with rivals. And this is bad, why?

You want to know why John McCain think it will work, it DC conventional wisdom. It lead Hillary Clinton to yes on the Iraq War to show that she can be at tough as McCain, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and the rest of beltway that went along with fear over principle. Barack Obama is right.
"I don't want to just end the war, but I want to end the mindset that got us into war in the first place."
On a related note, Clinton supporter Lanny Davis tells Fox News that Obama is Ned Lamont and Hillary Clinton is Joe Lieberman.

February 19, 2008

Hillary Clinton: Mission Accomplished

It was the first time a Presidential candidate has arrived on the deck of an aircraft carrier by plan. The jet made what is know as a “tailhook” landing with the plan traveling about 150 mph, hooking onto the last of four steel wires across the flight deck and coming to a complete stop in less than 400 feet.

The exterior of the four-seat Navy S-3B Viking was marked with "Hillary 1" in the back and "Commander-in-Chief in Waiting" just below the cockpit window. On the plane's tail was the insignia of the squadron, the "Blue Wolves."

Moments after the landing, the Hillary Clinton, wearing a green flight suit and holding a white helmet, got off the plane, saluted those on the flight deck and shook hands with them. Above him, the tower was adorned with a big sign that read, "Mission Accomplished."

Press Secretary Taylor Marsh has release the follow text of Hillary Clinton’s speech.
Hillary Clinton announces major primary election operations in America have ended

Remarks by the Hillary Clinton from the USS Abraham Lincoln Bill Clinton
At Sea Off the Coast of San Diego, California

Hillary Clinton: Thank you all very much, Admirals, Captions, officers and sailors of the USS Bill Clinton, my fellow Americans: Major primary election operations in America has ended. In the Democratic primary, I and my supporters have prevailed. And now our coalition is engaged in securing and reconstructing the Democratic Party.

In this battle, we have fought for the cause of power, and for destruction of Hope. Our States and our collation are proud of this accomplishment – yet, it is you, the members of Hillary land, who achieved it. Your courage, your willing to face danger for us and for our power, made this day possible. Because of you, our Democratic Party is more secure. Because of you, the Obama tyrant has fallen, and the Democratic Party is free.

Operation it’s going to happen was carried out with a combination of breaking the rules and boldness the enemy did not expect, and the Democratic Party has not seen before. From distant bases of New York and California, we sent Howard Wolfson and Mark Penn to destroy enemy division, or multiple pledged delegates. Taylor Marsh and Lanny Davis charged across 2000 miles of hostile ground, in one of the swiftest advances in the heavy arms in history. You have shown the world the skill and the might of the Clinton forces.

The Election is not over, yet it is not endless. We do know the day of final victory is November 2, 2008, but we have seen the turning of the tide. No act of voting will change our purpose, or weaken our resolve, or alter our fate. Their cause is lost. We will press to victory.

Thank you for serving US and our cause. May God bless you all, and may God continue to bless the Clinton Democratic Party.
After Hillary Clinton’s ‘Mission Accomplishes’ speech, Five Star General Mark Penn answered the following questions from reporters.

It’s only February 19 2008, Democrats are voting in Wisconsin and there are still primaries and causes in many other states.
Well, the Clinton forces won all the major battles that really count. Those past and future elections are insignificant and plus winning elections are not a good sign of winning in the general election.
As of now, Obama has more pledged delegates even if you count superdelegates he is still in the lead. How do you still claim victory?
Obama delegates are second- class. We refuse to count them as legitimate delegates.
What is your plan to secure victory in November?
My belief we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.


February 18, 2008

Hillary Clinton is the Popular Vote Leader

If you only count the states that matter.

In another attempt to deny reality, Paul Lukasiak is making the case that Hillary Clinton is the popular vote leader base on exit polls.

Via Taylor Marsh.
Based on exit polls, among the approximately 16.3 million people who identified themselves as Democrats, over 678,000 more voted for Hillary Clinton than Barack Obama. If we’re going to “let the people decide" who the Democratic nominee would be, shouldn’t we be basing that on the will of Democrats themselves?
Taylor Marsh calls herself a Democrat, but she also allows Larry C. Johnson to continue his racist attacks on Senator Obama on her blog. Taylor Marsh even goes as far to call Larry C. Johnson an expert to legitimize his rants against the Democratic Senator of Illinois. I won’t link to Taylor Marsh and Larry C. Johnson's Obama hate feast.

Paul Lukasiak continues to make this case.
In fact, on Super Tuesday, 295,952 more primary voters cast their ballots for Hillary Clinton than for Obama, yet somehow neither the Obama campaign, nor the media, was paying much attention to Clinton’s lead in the popular vote. If we include all the states that held primaries before Super Tuesday (NH, SC, MI, FL) Clinton was up by 468,024 votes—that was 2.51% of the total votes cast. But talking about that number was not a media priority either.

Only now that Obama has a miniscule lead of 128,736 in the number of votes cast (and that includes assigning all the “uncommitted” votes in Michigan to Obama) has the media focused on total votes cast. This lead represents less than 1% (0.62%) of votes cast in the primary elections held so far, yet it is trumpeted by the media endlessly.

But, since this is actually the Democratic primary, perhaps we should look at how Democrats have actually voted. Based on the available exit polling data, we find that Hillary Clinton has a commanding lead over Barack Obama in the number of votes – As of February 16, 2008, 391,992 more Democrats voted for Clinton than Obama.
Nice play on words. Notice how he does not cite the actually vote totals to support his case. This whole argument is base on unreliable exits polls. Tom in Texas over at Balloon Juice rips apart Paul Lukasiak’s facts.
Apparently, if you only count votes up to Super Tuesday, discount every state that had a caucus, only go by the exit polling, and eliminate any voters who weren’t registered Democrats, then Hillary Clinton*actually has the popular vote lead. In other news, based on exit polling and early voting from 2004 President Kerry will be running for reelection.
Even if you add Florida and Michigan, where Obama was not on the ballot, Hillary Clinton still is not the popular voter leader. Hey, if Mark Penn can dismiss States and Democratic primaries as insignificant. Hillary Clinton supporters can also dismiss actually votes totals as insignificant.


Hillary Clinton supporters have no shame. Now, only Clinton’s Superdelegates matter.
A co-chairman of Hillary's Michigan campaign and has a line that's sure to drive a whole bunch of red state governor's up the wall:

"Superdelegates are not second-class delegates," says Joel Ferguson, who will be a superdelegate if Michigan is seated. "The real second-class delegates are the delegates that are picked in red-state caucuses that are never going to vo, te Democratic."

February 12, 2008

Clinton’s Campaign Rhetoric Insults my Intelligence

I’m not naïve. I know that spin and rhetoric is part of running a campaign, but it is getting to the point that Clinton’s rhetoric is no longer base on reality. Hillary Clinton and her staff are willing to say anything with a straight face. Mark Penn latest spin would make Karl Rove blush.
"Senator Obama has in fact never had a serious Republican challenger."
The same thing can be said about Hillary Clinton and her Senate campaigns. Does Mark Penn count Bill Clinton’s victories over Bob Dole and George H. W. Bush in the Hillary column? Obama won a contested Democratic primary in Illinois and faced a strong Republican opposition in an open seat. On the other hand, Hillary Clinton had a cleared field in New York Democratic primary. In both cases, the leading Republican candidates dropped out and they won their Senate seats by large margins.

It gets worse, Hillary Clinton campaign pollster/strategist Mark Penn no longer believes in polls. This is like GOP stop believing tax cuts and Ronald Reagan. Even Hillary Clinton is getting into the act.
“I think that both Michigan and Florida should count, because these are two states we have to carry,” she said. “This is not about so much as the ins and outs of the Democratic National Committee as to whether the Democrats are going to win in the fall.

“In Michigan, all of us had a chance to leave our names on the ballot – I chose to do so,” she continued. “My opponents ran a very vigorous campaign to get people to vote ‘uncontested.’ There was a campaign going on – it was a campaign against me, and I still won a majority.
This is dishonorable. Clinton’s campaign manger backed the DNC decision to strip Florida and Michigan of their delegates if they refused to return their primaries to their original dates.
We believe Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina play a unique and special role in the nominating process, and we believe the DNC's rules and its calendar provide the necessary structure to respect and honor that role."
The Clinton’s campaign could have voice their concerns then and forced the DNC change their policy, but they and the other campaigns went along with the DNC’s rules. It rings hollow now to make a big deal about Florida, Michigan and the election results when you had a chance to bring about real change in the process. The Clinton’s campaign is willing to trash any rules in the pursuit of power.

February 8, 2008

Quote of the Day

Senator Barack Obama:
"Whoever wins this Democratic primary... they're the toughest, baddest candidate on the block."

Top Five

A quick rundown of the posts I have read during my travels around the series of tubes.

- The Nation: Money can't buy you love.
Even the wealthiest candidates can't keep spending $1 million a delegate to maintain losing campaigns for the Republican presidential nomination.

So Mitt Romney has announced that he is "suspending" his spectacularly-expensive bid for a nomination that the blow-dried businessman candidate thought was his for the taking.

If money was all that mattered in politics, the nomination would have gone to Romney. He put an estimated $50 million of his family's money into the initiative, which will probably end up having cost the candidate and his supporters in excess of $100 million.
- Capitol Watch: Finally.
Thanks to Zell Miller, there is a rule to deal with Joe Lieberman.

Lieberman's endorsement of Republican John McCain disqualifies him as a super-delegate to the Democratic National Convention under what is informally known as the Zell Miller rule, according to Democratic State Chairwoman Nancy DiNardo.
After the 2008 elections, Senate Democrats should kick Holy Joe out of their caucus.

- Election Central: A newly released poll from Time magazine.
McCain (R) 41%Obama (D) 48%,
Clinton (D) 46%, McCain (R) 46%
- Think Progress: Sometimes, it seems like Republicans live in a different reality than the rest of us.

- Fan House: Tiki Barber is full of it.

February 7, 2008

It’s Over

Mitt Romney suspends his 2008 Presidential Campaign. In this concession speech at C-PAC, Romney continues to be full of it.
"If I fight on in my campaign, all the way to the convention, I would forestall the launch of a national campaign and make it more likely that Senator Clinton or Obama would win. And in this time of war, I simply cannot let my campaign, be a part of aiding a surrender to terror."
Steve Benen over at the Carpetbagger Reports highlights Romney’s greatest camping hits.

Top Five

A quick rundown of the posts I have read during my travels around the series of tubes.

- Think Progress: Republican Presidential Candidate John McCain broken his pledged to return to the Senate and vote on the economic stimulus package. So, what happen to the Straight Talk Express?

- The Carpetbagger Report: Steve Benen covers all of the angles of Hilary Clinton’s money troubles.

- Election Central: The Hilary Clinton Campaign is getting desperate.
Hillary campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle has sent an open letter to the Obama camp, stepping up their debate challenge. The letter argues that voters should get to see more than a single one-on-one debate between the two, and that the two of them should have one debate a week for the next five weeks starting this weekend.

One particular proposed venue would definitely be a sticking point with a lot of Democratic activists: "Senator Clinton believes voters should have more than one opportunity to see the candidates discuss the issues and has accepted five debates between now and March 4th from CNN, MSNBC, WJLA, ABC and Fox News."
- Huffington Post: Hilary Clinton might be ready on day one, but what about after the first day in office?

- Fan House: Shaquille O'Neal is back in the Western Conference.

February 6, 2008

The Clinton Campaign is Willing to Say Anything

They are shameless in their rhetoric. Spin is one thing, but the Clinton Campaign’s rhetoric really insults people’s intelligence.

Christopher Orr:
Sometimes, imitation is just the sincerest form of lameness, and Clinton adviser Mark Penn's effort to brand Barack Obama the "establishment" candidate is one of those occasions. As Mike reported, in a conference call this morning, Penn referred to Obama's "establishment campaign of big endorsements, money, and Super Bowl ads." But, of course, Obama's endorsements have appeared to be born more of love than of tribute (in contrast to Clinton's earlier-in-the-process hoard) and his money has come from smaller donors than Clinton's. The Super Bowl ad? Whatever you think of it (I wasn't terribly impressed), it was hardly an establishment move. (Any of you remember Bob Dole's big half-time promo? Me neither.)

Moreover, it's all just so fourth grade. Obama makes headway by framing himself (accurately) as a change agent? Clinton abruptly starts pitching herself as a change agent, too. Obama describes Clinton (again, accurately, at least in relative terms) as the status-quo candidate in last night's speech? This morning we have Penn's I'm-rubber-you're-glue routine. Next thing you know, Clinton will start attending rallies in a men's suit and skinny tie and talking about how much she loves "The Wire," too.

Silly, obvious fibs like this are one reason that so many in the media are skeptical of anything that comes out of the Clinton camp. It's an insult to the intelligence of the people being spun. (Massachusetts was an upset win for Clinton? Obama's the establishment candidate?)

But the worst part of it all is that the GOP has won the last two presidential elections largely by framing the Democratic nominee as book-smart but inauthentic, someone who really doesn't know who they are. Hillary's attempted reinventions over the last few weeks--from establishment juggernaut to counter-establishment rebel; from Strong Woman to Sensitive Soul; from "leader" to "change agent"--are just doing the GOP's general-election work for them.

Don’t Be Fooled, Don't Get Played


Senator Clinton was supposed to use her base in the Northeast, California, and Arkansas to come out of February 5th with a 150+ pledged delegates lead. It did not happen. Senator Barack Obama will come out of last night vote with more pledged delegates.
Hillary advisers also disputed the Obama camp's claim of a lead among delegates, arguing that they were ahead when you factor in superdelegates.
Who are theses superdelegates? Democratic Party insiders and elected Democratic officeholders. The Clinton campaign is ahead in the delegate count based on superdelgates only. Which is not shocking, the Democratic Party has been the Party of Clinton for the past 15 years or so. If Hilary Clinton wins the Democratic Nomination base on superdelegates rather than pledged delegates her victory would illegitimate.
Well, whoop dee doo that you lead in super delegates, considering that most of those enodrsements were racked up when your campaign was the clear frontrunner. After this weekend, when three of the four states, and 126 of the 185 pledged delegates are determined via caucuses, Obama will stretch out his pledged delegate lead further. On Tuesday, no matter who actually wins the popular vote in Virginia, Obama will stretch out his pledged delegate lead even further by racking up large wins in D.C. and probably Maryland. And then, on February 19th, there is another caucus in Hawaii, and a primary in the non-partisan registration state of Obama's neighboring Wisconsin. Yes indeed, the February calendar is very favorable to Obama.

A campaign that is now on course to be down by more than 100 pledged delegates in two weeks didn't "tie." Just like Mitt Romney, any campaign that is talking about changing delegate allocation rules didn't "tie." A campaign that is plugging its website to try and raise money didn't "tie." A campaign that talks about stopping the momentum currently enjoyed by its opponent didn't "tie." That is a campaign back on its heels. As I wrote last night, this was not a tie, and Obama clearly has the edge.

Now, Clinton can still make a stand in Ohio and Texas on March 4th, where the electorate could be favorable to her in both states. If she fails to score victories there, however, there is no way she can win the pledged delegate count in this nomination campaign. At that point, her only other path to the nomination would be through super delegates and controlling the Michigan / Florida delegation seating process. At best, that is a backdoor path to the nomination that will force a crisis of legitimacy in the Democratic nominee.

Clinton pollster Mark Penn Spins Himself Silly

You would think Mark Penn would come up with something better than claiming Senator Barack Obama is the ‘establishment candidate’.
This one is worth keeping an eye on, because we'll be hearing more of it in the days ahead. In the Clinton campaign conference call I mentioned below, Hillary pollster Mark Penn repeatedly said Obama was becoming an "establishment candidate" -- a rather strained effort to use Obama's high-profile endorsements to weaken his insurgent appeal.

Asked about Obama's loss in Massachusetts despite the Teddy Kennedy endorsement, Penn again reiterated the fact that voters making up their minds on the last day had broken for Hillary, suggesting (without quite saying) that this was somehow catalyzed by Obama's new high-profile support.

"The more that Senator Obama has shifted to becoming an establishment campaign based on endorsements, people said, `You know, it's really Senator Clinton who has the ideas for change,'" Penn told reporters.

Again: Keep in mind that in advance of yesterday's contest, Hillary had a massive lead in Massachusetts for weeks. Anyway, we'll be hearing more of this.
On a related note, Mark Penn consulting firm has been paid more than 4.3 millions by the Clinton Campaign.
Even if his candidate fails to secure the Democratic nomination, Mark Penn, the chief strategist for Sen. Hillary Clinton, has profited quite handsomely.

Through the course of the primary, Penn's consulting firm, Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates, has been paid more than $4.3 million by the Clinton campaign, according to a review of campaign finance filings.

That total, compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, includes receipts for tasks ranging from polling and consulting to mail expenses and even photography. It does not include the $1.5 million the Clinton campaign is in debt to the firm.

February 4, 2008

Clinton: '35 Years of Change'

Senator Clinton continues to misrepresent her lifework in the nonprofit sector. If you actually look into her history, it tells a different story.
To hear Hillary Clinton talk, she's spent her entire career putting her Yale Law School degree to work for the common good.

She routinely tells voters that she's "been working to bring positive change to people's lives for 35 years." She told a voter in New Hampshire: "I've spent so much of my life in the nonprofit sector." Speaking in South Carolina, Bill Clinton said his wife "could have taken a job with a firm ... Instead she went to work with Marian Wright Edelman at the Children's Defense Fund."

The overall portrait is of a lifelong, selfless do-gooder. The whole story is more complicated — and less flattering.

Clinton worked at the Children's Defense Fund for less than a year, and that's the only full-time job in the nonprofit sector she's ever had. She also worked briefly as a law professor.

Clinton spent the bulk of her career — 15 of those 35 years — at one of Arkansas' most prestigious corporate law firms, where she represented big companies and served on corporate boards.

Top Five

A quick rundown of the posts I have read during my travels around the series of tubes.

- Think Progress: Republican Senator John McCain is horrible in the stump, especially when he is trying to be funny.

- Open Left: Democratic Congressman Dan Lipinski is full of it.

- Americablog: Can we stop calling Joe Lieberman a moderate or even a Democrat anymore?

- MyDD: Seriously, Gov. Bill Richardson should make up his mind already.

- Fan House: Wow. It was a great game. The New York Football Giants are the Champs.

February 3, 2008

Yes We Can!

Obama 08'

February 1, 2008

MoveOn Endorses Barack Obama

MoveOn’s Press Release:
In a resounding vote today, MoveOn.org Political Action's members nationwide voted to endorse Senator Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination for President. The group, with 3.2 million members nation-wide and over 1.7 million members in Super Tuesday states, will immediately begin to mobilize on behalf of Senator Obama. The vote favored Senator Obama to Senator Clinton by 70.4% to 29.6%.

Senator Obama accepted the endorsement stating:

""In just a few years, the members of MoveOn have once again demonstrated that real change comes not from the top-down, but from the bottom-up. From their principled opposition to the Iraq war - a war I also opposed from the start - to their strong support for a number of progressive causes, MoveOn shows what Americans can achieve when we come together in a grassroots movement for change. I thank them for their support and look forward to working with their members in the weeks and months ahead."

Eli Pariser, MoveOn.org's Executive Director, issued the following statement on the group's endorsement:

"Our members' endorsement of Senator Obama is a clear call for a new America at this critical moment in history. Seven years of the disastrous policies of the Bush Administration have left the country desperate for change. We need a President who will bring to bear the strong leadership and vision required to end the war in Iraq, provide health care to every American, deal with our climate crisis, and restore America's standing in the world. The enormity of the challenges require someone who knows how to inspire millions to get involved to change the direction of our country, and someone who will be willing to change business as usual in Washington. Senator Barack Obama has proved he can and will be that President."

McCain’s Democratic Flirtations

Republican Presidential Candidate John McCain is within days of winning the GOP nomination, but it’s never a good sign when your campaign has to deny that the candidate almost left the Party that he is about to lead heading into the 2008 elections.
Mark Salter, who in 2001 was McCain’s chief of staff and now works for the senator’s campaign, said McCain has not at any moment thought about leaving the Republican Party: “Never at any time. Never.”
The Hill reports Democratic Senators John Edwards, Edward Kennedy and Harry Reid were part of intense recruiting effort along with Senator Tom Daschle and Rep. Tom Downey to bring the Republican Senator to the Democratic side.
In interviews with The Hill this month, former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) and ex-Rep. Tom Downey (D-N.Y.) said there were nearly two months of talks with the maverick lawmaker following an approach by John Weaver, McCain’s chief political strategist. [..]

Other senators who played major roles in the intense recruiting effort, according to Democrats, were then-Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) as well as Sens. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

“John [Edwards] at that time was working with McCain on a couple things and there was a sense that because of his relationship that he might be a good person to talk to him,” Daschle said. “He was clearly one of those that we thought could be helpful.”

A source close to Edwards said Daschle’s comments are accurate.
Republicans did take notice of McCain flirtations with the Democratic Party. Former Republican Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert believes John McCain was more of an ally of the Democrats than Congressional Republicans.
Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert questioned John McCain’s Republican credentials today, saying he was always known among the GOP as “the undependable vote” in the Senate and always “allied with Democrats.” [..]

The former House speaker has not had a lot of good to say about McCain in recent years. He contended that on agenda items under the Republican-controlled Congress, “it just seems like everything we did, John was someplace else.”

“It was McCain-Kennedy, it was McCain-Lieberman, it was McCain-Feingold on campaign finance reform,” Hastert said, noting Democratic co-sponsors. “He was against us on tax cuts and his form of immigration reform was to open the gates and let everybody in.”

Asked if he considered McCain a conservative, Hastert said, “In my opinion, he is not.”
To be fair, Dennis Hastert is a Mitt Romney supporter. The Illinois Republican does point to the Keating Five scandal and John McCain's presidential ambitious as the reason why John McCain changed his political ideology.
McCain was one of five senators implicated in the 1989 Keating Five, a congressional scandal alleging federal regulators were pressured against an investigation of Charles Keating, the former chairman of the Lincoln Savings and Loan Assn.

McCain was cited by the Senate Ethics Committee for “poor judgment” but it recommended no further action.

Speaking later to the Tribune, Hastert, who retired from Congress in November of last year, said McCain changed after the Keating Five to become “more of a populist.”

“He was gearing up for a run for the presidency in 2000 so he had to change track and clean up his image, from my point of view,” Hastert said.
Wow, Maybe Rush Limbaugh is right. A John McCain presidential candidacy might tear apart the GOP. It’s going to be fun to watch.

Barack Obama Won the Debate

This is the moment where it happened.

Top Five

A quick rundown of the posts I have read during my travels around the series of tubes.

- Will Durst: Its funny because its true.
During George Bush's last State of the Union Address, he received his biggest response for announcing this was his last State of the Union Address.
- Think Progress: When did calling someone Juan become funny?

- Marc Ambinder: Who won last night Democratic debate?
I was tempted to call this encounter a draw but I am mindful that there are no zero sum debates in presidential politics.

And twenty minutes of Iraq happened. And so I’ll give Obama the edge. Clinton was forced, for about 20 minutes, to recapitulate her vote on Iraq, over and over again. It was tough for her. She seemed to mire herself in the details of history. [..]

Obama really gives a great answer on the war, talking about the mindset differences between himself and Clinton and stressing the need for a date certain. He’s found a way to create daylight between himself and Clinton on withdrawing from Iraq.
- Open Left: Democratic Congressman Luis Gutierrez does the right thing and by withdrawing his endorsement of Democratic Congressman Lipinski for the upcoming primary. Congressman Lipinski continues to vote like Republicans Sensenbrenner and Tancredo on immigration while supporting the Republican minority on Iraq. It’s time to send more and better Democrats to Congress. Vote for Mark Pera in the Illinois Democratic primary for the 3rd Congressional District.

- Fan House: There is no love lost between the New York Football Giants and Tiki Barber.