Archives for Politics

Why the GOP backbenchers hang on

It doesn’t matter if their candidate of choice is one of the flavors of the week in the GOP Presidential circus or a perennial backbencher, those who support and work for their favorite are adamant that this is the year for them. That’s why the second tier of GOP candidates keep soldiering on in the face of declining poll numbers, empty campaign chests and dwindling hope. At the moment, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain represent the top tier of candidates but — with the exception of Romney — GOP frontrunners have come and gone.  Rick Perry and Michelle
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Ron Paul’s niche support: Solid but not enough

Ron Paul‘s niche support among specific libertarian and right-wing voters keeps him hovering near first place in Iowa as state’s unique caucus primary system approaches but his band of rabid supporters forget one thing. A win in Iowa doesn’t translate into long-term political success or the Republican nomination for President. Just ask former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who won Iowa four years with support form the same cadres of narrow-interest voters that now flock around Paul.  A few weeks later, Huckabee was history. “Iowa is a lot of hoopla but little else,” says Michael Jander, who worked for Huckabee in
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Gingrich rolls the dice in latest GOP gabfest

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich took his shoot-from-the-lip political nature into the latest GOP presidential debate Tuesday and wandered into dangerous and uncharted territory on immigration and Social Security. It was vintage Gingrich, unleashing the riverboat gambler style that served him during is contentious days in Congress. Instead of playing it safe, Gingrich offered ways for illegal immigrants to avoid deportation and become U.S. citizens, a defiant stance to the rapid Republican right wing that wants all illegals shipped home. “I don’t see how the party that says it’s the party of the family is going to adopt
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‘Super Committee’ crashes and burns

Turns out the over-hyped Congressional “Super Committee” wasn’t so super. In fact, it was a dud. The joint House and Senate committee, charged with coming up with a plan to overcome the government’s record $15 trillion debt, threw in the towel Monday and admitted it could not overcome partisan bickering and political divides. The failure sent stock prices into the dumpster as the uber-secret committee dissolved into bitter, finger-pointing oblivion. It leaves behind another Congressional legacy of failure, a monument to gridlock that symbolizes Congress and a political system unwilling to make the tough decision to solve an economic crisis.
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GOP establishment worried about its ‘loony list’ of candidates

As the Republican Party struggles to find a candidate with the best chance to beat Barack Obama in 2012, it faces a major problem: A proliferation of flawed, scandal-scarred candidates who — if successful — could doom the party’s changes of reclaiming the White House. Capitol Hill Blue has learned that a confidential “loony list” is circulating among senior aides at the Republican National Committee as strategists huddle in closed-door meetings trying to figure out ways to weed out the problem candidates. On the’ loony list’ are: Herman Cain, the former Godfather’s CEO under fire for a past history of
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Cain turns to Secret Service to hide from the press

Herman Cain is hiding behind a new security barrier of Secret Service agents — the first GOP candidate to request such protection in the 2012 campaign — and claims he wants the guards because of threats against him. But a source close to the Cain campaign confirmed to Capitol Hill Blue this week that the candidate is more concerned about the threat of a free press than any potential assassin. “He wants to keep reporters at bay,” the source said.  “He sees the media as an enemy.” In fact, Cain is so afraid of the press that he canceled a
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Sadly, class is not a prerequisite for the presidency

A commenter on one of Capitol Hill Blue’s recent stories noted that GOP presidential contender Ron Paul has more “class” than another challenger — the constantly whiny Michelle Bachmann. That’s true — and if class had any bearing in presidential elections, Paul would be a frontrunner instead of a second tier contender who has no chance at winning the nomination, much less the presidency. Sadly, class has nothing to do in determining who becomes a party’s nominee or eventually president of this nation. Neither, unfortunately, does competence, honesty, ability or morality. If ability were a determining factor, we would not
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Bachmann goes ballistic over perceived media slight

Michele Bachmann is apparently unaware that her 15 minutes of presidential contention fame were up long ago. She’s pissed at CBS News because the network — sponsors of Saturday night’s debate in Spartanburg, South Carolina — didn’t feel she was important enough to give extra air time. Alice Stewart, a staffer for Bachmann, who is hovering near the bottom of the polls, offered up her candidate for a post-debate interview.  When the offer reached CBS political director John Dickerson, he wasn’t all that interested. “Okay let’s keep it loose though since she’s not going to get many questions and she’s
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Romney, Gingrich shine in latest GOP debate

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and former speaker of the house Newt Gingrich emerged as clear winners of the latest Republican presidential debate Saturday night while Herman Cain and Rick Perry failed to impress, GOP and Democratic insiders say. A poll of political operatives taken immediately after the debate by The National Journal gives the debate to Romney with Gingrich coming in a strong second. Among Republican political operatives, Romney was the clear winner with half the vote, Gingrich finished second with 30 percent and Perry was a distant third with 13 percent. Democratic political pros gave the debate to
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Newt rises from the political ashes

The topsy-turvy GOP presidential sweepstakes took another turn towards the bizarre Friday with a new CBS News poll that shows a three-way race between former Massachusetts Mitt Romney, former businessman Herman Cain…and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Newt Gingrich? That’s right. In a campaign season that has seen GOP frontrunners come and go like smoke rings, Gingrich is — for the first time — in double digits among potential Republican voters one of the three current frontrunners in a volatile race for the right to challenge President Barack Obama in 2012. Gingrich, rising from the ashes after a
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