Archives for Politics

Lies, damn lies & campaign promises

It will be 35 years next week since President Richard Nixon, responding to an Arab oil embargo, vowed to make the United States energy independent — and do it in seven years. America is still waiting.

Now as Barack Obama and John McCain vie to become the next president, a promise of U.S. energy independence again has become a rallying cry on the campaign trail.

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Obama lead holds steady in Zogby poll

Democrat Barack Obama's lead over Republican rival John McCain held steady at seven points as the race for the White House entered its final four days, according to a Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby poll released on Friday.

Obama leads McCain by 50 percent to 43 percent among likely voters in the three-day national tracking poll, virtually unchanged from Thursday. The telephone poll has a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points.

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Obama infomercial a ratings hit

Barack Obama's campaign "infomercial" was the most-watched telecast in U.S. prime time on Wednesday, drawing an "American Idol"-size audience that easily eclipsed even the climax to baseball's World Series.

More than 33.5 million viewers tuned in to watch the Democratic presidential nominee's paid 30-minute message, aired on three major broadcast networks and four smaller channels, Nielsen Media Research reported on Thursday.

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Obama expands poll lead over McCain

Democrat Barack Obama has opened a 7-point lead over Republican rival John McCain with five days left in the race for the White House, according to a Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby poll released on Thursday.

Obama leads McCain by 50 percent to 43 percent among likely voters in the three-day national tracking poll, building on his 5-point advantage on Wednesday. The telephone poll has a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points.

It was the second consecutive day Obama's lead has grown as the two-year presidential battle draws to a close. McCain is struggling to overtake Obama's lead in every national opinion poll and in many battleground states.


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New ethics complaint filed against Palin

A new ethics complaint has been filed against Sarah Palin, accusing the Alaska governor of abusing her power by charging the state when her children traveled with her.

The complaint alleges that the Republican vice presidential nominee used her official position as governor for personal gain, violating a statute of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act. It follows a report by The Associated Press last week that Palin charged the state more than $21,000 for her three daughters' commercial flights, including events where they weren't invited, and later ordered their expense forms amended to specify official state business.

In some cases, Palin also has charged the state for hotel rooms for the girls.

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Race, gender and the Presidency

It's been debated for more than a century. But when this historical presidential campaign comes to a close next week, will we know the answer to the following question with any degree of certainty: which more fervently permeates the fabric of American society, racism or sexism?

I think we will and I think the answer will be sexism. The 2008 campaign has demonstrated it is more politically correct to be sexist than racist. American culture tolerates sexism to a degree it would never tolerate racism.


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Sarah Palin sure is a lot of fun

Just when things seemed darkest for the journalism racket the news gods smiled -- only briefly, as it turned out -- and bestowed Sarah Palin upon us.

However the campaign turns out, we can't let her go back to Alaska. She's too much fun.

Just recently she was the cause of a great new contribution to our political vocabulary -- "gone rogue." As in a McCain campaign insider's observation that in Palin's increasing tendency to depart from the script prepared for her the vice presidential candidate "has gone rogue on us."


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Laughing all the way to the end

In the standard metaphor of the presidential election race, it is the candidates who are said to be running. My friends, to borrow John McCain's phrase because soon he will not be needing it, we are all runners.

Over and over, we have slogged up one side of a debate and down the other, we have pushed hard against unfavorable political headwinds, we have stopped for liquid refreshment (energy drinks, i.e., beer), we have laughed, we have cried and we have seen our brains turned into mush by ridiculous TV commercials and robo-calls.


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Obama took cash from Ayers: That’s bad

Barack Obama's critics appropriately have spotlighted his ties to William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, the remorseless co-founders and leaders of the terrorist Weather Underground. However, Obama's detractors largely overlook Ayers' campaign contribution to Obama.

On April 2, 2001, Ayers donated $200 to Obama's Illinois State Senate re-election campaign. Though not a jackpot, this represents Ayers' only recorded political contribution.


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Obama’s foreign policy: Still an unknown

When it comes to economics, we know our right from our left. Those on the right, trust markets more than governments. For those on the left -- it's the other way around.

Where international affairs are concerned, it gets more complicated. Even so, I was stunned by columnist Peggy Noonan's assertion that Barack Obama could "more easily go left in foreign relations for the precise reason no one knows what going left is, because no one knows what going right in foreign relations is, at least if 'right' means 'conservative.'"


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