Archives for Politics

Why Rick Santorum connects with voters

Sporting his signature sweater vest and telling stories of his coal miner grandfather, Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum has struck a chord in the Rust Belt that is helping propel his once long-shot candidacy. Although he is a millionaire, Santorum has found a common touch that has helped put him atop opinion polls in the industrial states of Michigan and Ohio and raised serious doubts about whether longtime front-runner Mitt Romney can win the Republican nomination to take on President Barack Obama in the November 6 election. Santorum’s portrayal of himself as the blue-collar Republican has managed to overshadow Romney’s
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Obama: Unfinished business is job one for term two

President Barack Obama sought on Thursday to stoke enthusiasm in California about his 2012 re-election drive, saying he wanted another chance to overhaul immigration and tackle climate change with a second term. At a series of fundraisers in San Francisco, the Democrat acknowledged he has had a tough first three years in office and asked supporters to summon the energy to mobilize for him again to complete unfinished business on his agenda. “We’re going to have to be as focused as we were in 2008,” he said, joking that it was “not as trendy” to support him now as when
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Santorum got rich after leaving Senate

Rick Santorum grew wealthy over his four years working as a corporate consultant and media commentator after leaving the Senate in 2006, his newly released federal tax returns show. He made more than $3.6 million and drove an Audi luxury sedan – details that could be at odds with his effort to attract blue-collar voters in the GOP’s upcoming presidential primary in Michigan. Santorum, 53, has presented himself in the Republican primaries as both a social conservative and a Washington outsider, stressing his family’s coal-mining background and his appeal to religious and working-class voters. His personal finances detail the trajectory
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Santorum: Aspirin? We don’t need no stinkin’ aspirin

Republican presidential contender Rick Santorum is distancing himself from a high-profile supporter’s comments about contraception. The main donor behind Santorum’s “super PAC,” Foster Friess (freeze), said on MSNBC on Thursday that aspirin used to be an acceptable method for contraception. Friess said that “gals,” in his words, “put it between their knees, and it wasn’t that costly.” He followed the comment with laughter. Santorum, a devout Catholic, has said he opposes contraception. But he’s calling Friess’ comment a “stupid joke.” And he says he’s not responsible for everything his supporters say. Speaking to reporters after a speech in Michigan, Santorum
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Is Santorum surging again?

While former Minnesota Gov. Mitt Romney worked to neutralize former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, the other “former” in the race — one time Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum — may be poised to sneak up an grab a victory in at least one of two caucus states on Tuesday. “Santorum is surging again, at least in Minnesota and Colorado,” GOP strategist Sam Goldstein tells Capitol Hill Blue.  “He could pull off a surprise or two.” Indeed. Polls show a close race between Santorum and Paul in the two states while Gingrich and Texas Congressman Ron Paul fade into the
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Halftime in America

Clint Eastwood popped up in a Super Bowl ad at halftime Sunday night — not dispatching bad guys as Dirty Harry or snuffing outlaws in a spaghetti western. Nope, Clint was shilling for Chrysler Corp., talking about jobs, manufacturing and quality — traits some say are lost in this nation. But the ad also spotlighted some other things that are lost in today’s America: Hope, resiliency, belief in ourselves and an ability to bounce back from adversity. Said Clint: This country can’t be knocked out with one punch, we get right back up again and when we do the world
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Newt Gingrich’s latest — and most blatant — hypocrisy

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, the Republican bomb thrower who turned dissension into public policy, now says he is “sick and tired” of candidates who deploy divisive tactics. Now Gingrich says he is the candidate to “unite America.” Say what? “I want to be a President for all Americans,” Gingrich said Wednesday. This from the man who turned the U.S. Congress into a political divide larger than the Grand Canyon.  This from the man who — as Speaker — turned Congress into a backbiting snake pit where compromise became a dirty word and coalitions sank into a swamp
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Obama’s State of the Disunion

President Barack Obama rewrote history in real time Tuesday night, telling the nation that most, if not all, the problems this country faces were inherited and everything would be OK if only the other side would always let him do things his way. Blaming a nation in chaos entirely on the Republican party, Obama’s State of the Union address was more political stump speech than a factual report on a nation divided by political strife, hobbled by weak leadership and stymied by a system that no longer works. Capitol Hill Blue asked a panel of speech watchers to pick the
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Romney’s tax bill: $6.2 million for two years

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a millionaire several times over, paid 13.9 percent of his income in taxes last year and expects to shell out 15.4 percent this year. That comes to a total of $6.2 million in taxes on a two-year income of $42.5 million. Tax records released by the Romney campaign today show most of his income comes from capital gains, which is taxed at a lower rate than a salary.  The top income rate for capital gains is 15 percent while average wage earners pay 35 percent. Romney reluctantly and belatedly released the tax information after losing
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Stopping Gingrich is job one

Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney went on the attack against former speaker of the house Newt Gingrich Sunday, telling a Florida rally that the man who beat him in South Carolina was a failure as speaker and left Congress in disgrace. Said Romney: I don’t know if you actually knew that. He resigned after four years in disgrace. He was investigated under an ethics panel and had to make a payment associated with that and then his fellow Republicans, 88 percent of Republicans voted to reprimand Speaker Gingrich. He has not had a record of successful leadership. Romney continued: Over
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