I’ve heard critiques this morning that Vice President Joe Biden was all smirks, smiles, laughs, sharp elbows and impolite interruptions in his debate with Paul Ryan. It is always a risky tactic to let Joe be Joe, but it seems to have paid off.
After President Obama’s passive, lackluster response to Mitt Romney’s energetic assault during the first presidential debate, it was a relief that Biden came out swinging at Ryan. They got what they wanted and, as a result, Democrats should be reinvigorated as the closing days of the 2012 campaign tick away. I know I am.
And Biden made sure voters got to see Mitt Romney’s “47 percent” line put into action against the Republican presidential campaign. It was a fantasy moment for Democrats and Obama supporters, who thought the 47% quote from Romney was their major attack point.
CBS’s poll of undecided voters had Biden with a clear win, 50-31. Now we’ll see over the next few days how the VP debate effects overall polling for the presidential candidates.
- Biden v Ryan debate: ‘Feisty, aggressive and great television’ (itv.com)
- Video: Biden on Obama’s relationship with Israel: “It’s a bunch of stuff” (cbsnews.com)
- Poll: Biden takes debate over Ryan, uncommitted voters say (cbsnews.com)
- Biden comes out swinging at debate, clashes with Ryan (reuters.com)
- Joe Biden Is Stronger Communicator in VP Debate (forbes.com)
- Biden walks line between aggressive, domineering (kansascity.com)
Kal Penn will be hosting live coverage of the convention on BarackObama.com.
Kal Penn and the First Lady rehearse for the convention. The First Lady speaks tonight.
- Harold and Kumar Help Obama Promo Democratic National Convention (mashable.com)
- First Lady arrives at Time Warner Cable Arena (charlotteobserver.com)
- TV/Film Actor Kal Penn To Host Democratic Convention’s Livestream Celebrity Special (deadline.com)
- When Michelle Met Kumar (buzzfeed.com)
- Michelle Obama Preps for Democratic National Convention (justjared.com)
- Kal Penn leads celebrity political panel at Democrat National Convention (hollywood.com)
Remember last week when the Republicans put up black, woman, hispanic and other speakers (in front of the virtually all white audience) and said their convention represented a much more diverse America than the Democrats ever could? Well, they ought to take a look at a convention where the speakers AND the conventioneers are made up out of a great mix of Americans.
“This is truly the most diverse, the most open, the most transparent, the most exciting convention we’re about to undertake. It is big, it is bold, it is beautiful, it is America.”
– Alice Germond, Democratic National Committee Secretary
“We’re doing things a little different than the Republicans. A lot more delegates, Latino delegates, African Americans, women. In addition to having very prominent roles like the keynote speaker, and in my case chairing the convention, you’ll also see that our platform reflects our values.
“The face of our party will reflect the values of our party”
– Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Convention Chairman
Makes me proud to be a Democrat.
- DNC theme: Building economy from middle out (charlotteobserver.com)
- Villaraigosa Touts Diversity as Half Democratic Delegates Women – Bloomberg (bloomberg.com)
- Obama, Democrats to make their case as convention opens (reuters.com)
- In a Switch, GOP’s Speakers Highlight Diversity (cornhusker4palin.newsvine.com)
- DNC 2012, by the numbers (politico.com)
- NBC’s Chuck Todd: ‘Democrats Wish They Had The Diversity’ Of The GOP (mediaite.com)
- Open, accesible and diverse, versus secret, exclusive and white (proseandthorn.wordpress.com)
Tomorrow will be the start of three days of Democrats firing up their base and showing support for Barack Obama and Joe Biden. They are in Charlotte, North Carolina, and we’ll be hearing some great speeches.
There’s been a lot of criticism of C lint Eastwood at the Republican Convention with his empty chair routine. A lot of people are suggesting that the Democrats come up with a parody attack. The leading suggestion is to have Betty White talking to Romney in an empty chair. It’s a very funny idea, but it is not going to happen.
Democrats are going to make the point that we are actually better off today than we were when George W. Bush left us in an economic mess.
Just look at how much job growth there has been in the private sector sing the Republicans (red bars) were replaced by Obama and the Democrats (blue bars.) Of course this is what the Republicans lied about last week when they said Obama had done nothing in the last 3 1/2 years.
So I hope everyone enjoys watching the convention and that independents and undecideds go for Obama/Biden and the Democratic congressional candidates.
- Betty White to Introduce Obama at Democratic National Convention? (truthdig.com)
- Social media users urge Obama to let Betty White introduce him at convention (windsorstar.com)
- Dems wants Betty White to speak at DNC (content.usatoday.com)
- Obama embraces ‘Obamacare,’ says it’s here to stay (cnsnews.com)
- The 2012 Democratic National Convention Kicks Off This Week from Charlotte, North Carolina (bostinno.com)
- Joe Biden leads Democratic attacks on Romney before Charlotte convention (guardian.co.uk)
- Obama tweet mocking Eastwood was most shared GOP convention tweet (rawstory.com)
- Polls So Far: No Convention Bounce for Mitt Romney (themoderatevoice.com)
if the Obama team is any good, and I think they are, they are going to spend every penny they can spend, every squirreled away billion is going to hit the economy. if it is possible for us to have a recovery summer, this will be the summer we get it. of course it can’t be done without fingerprints and Republicans will all squeal like a stepped on cat every time a dollar gets spent. President Obama won’t be able to have an extra squirt of creamer in his coffee without being accused of juicing the economy. so that will be our long boring political summer. to the extent that anyone pays attention it’ll be a long boring political summer that Democrats win.
We enter the evening with Speaker John Boehner caving in to a growing chorus of criticism from both within and outside his Republican party. He has agreed to The Senate’s short-term deal to extend a payroll tax cut for 160 million Americans.
In a major reversal that appeared to end a standoff with Democrats, Boehner told Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid he would set a vote in the House on a Senate-passed two-month extension of the payroll tax cut.
Boehner’s about-face contrasts with a year of Republican dominance in The House, in which a staunch opposition to higher taxes and spending yielded a string of political successes. Their backpedalling this time handed a rare victory to President Barack Obama and Democrats.
The vote to carry out the 60-day plan should take place tomorrow.
Unemployment looks like it’s starting to go up again, even here in Shepherdstown where we were doing pretty well – something which I think is pretty common in small University towns not based on industry or international trade – and I’m getting more and more pissed off at our Congressfolk who would rather battle for control of the government than the salvation of the citizenry.
Take, for instance, the walkout of Cantor and Kyl from the deficit talks – blaming it n the Democrats seeking tax increases for the rich (after they had already given up three trillion dollars in concessions according to the news on television). Now it seems the walkout was pre-planned and this was a strategy to throw the Republican position into Boehner‘s lap, keeping the House from any kind of agreement on returning the upper 1% of rich folks from going back to the tax levels that Bush had brought them “temporarily” down to. As they pulled this off, the ability to fund the basics of Medicare and Medicaid seem strained and folks like Max Baucus, one of the few Democrats that I have the least trust in, announced he was ready to look at more cuts in the health care agenda.
If the deficit ceiling is not raised by the end of the next three or four weeks we will have plenty of opportunity to hear both parties blaming the other… both of them claiming that the majority of Americans agree with them. But since the rest of us are all part of that majority of Americans it seems strange that no one really feels the politicians are really speaking for us.
Perhaps it is time for us all to find ways to show that we could work together to solve problems, and send the politicians, lobbyists, Koch Brothers, Fox Newscasters, and all the rest who are making their big bucks on this conflict out into the night.
- Top Republican Cantor exits budget talks (ctv.ca)
- Republican claim that Cantor’s walkout was planned doesn’t add up (dailykos.com)
- We Are One Demonstration Tonite In Shepherdstown… (underthelobsterscope.wordpress.com)
- We Are In Deep Trouble With Our Economy and the Libs Just Want to Keep it Up (rantsandrage.com)
While I’ve been waiting at home for the delivery of my SuperFocus glasses (according to UPS tracking they left the Hagerstown UPS facility at around 7:30 this morning… it is now around 1:30 in the afternoon and they are not here yet. Of course, the estimated delivery listing said they would come at “some time” today… so I’m just going to wait.
Anyway, while sitting here waiting, I was thinking about the things that make politicians the servants of corporations with endless supplies of money, while they ignore the needs of citizens who have little or no cash to spare. Notice I didn’t distinguish between Democrats and Republicans… I can cite instances where members of both parties have knuckled under to Corporate funds. Although I must say that, during this season, and especially after the Citizens United decision by the Supreme Court, the Republicans are a good ten times ahead of the Democrats in raising corporate donations for campaign ads (about $100.00 vs. $1,000,000.00 so far) and, unlike the small players, the Republican contributions have not been attributed to anyone… they are completely secret.
That’s going to make the campaign season a little off center as we watch TV ads and listen to radio shows. It’s going to be the responsibility of blogs like this one to keep all the players honest. So I hope as petitions come up and phone calls need to be made that my readers will be as active as necessary to help us preserve the America that is run by the People and not by the Corporate Elite.
- Ben & Jerry on the “Personhood” of Citizens United: (underthelobsterscope.wordpress.com)
- Can Administration Thwart “Citizens United” Ruling (lezgetreal.com)
- GOP’s Political Warfare: Long-Term and Virtually Unopposed (elections.firedoglake.com)
- Doug Kendall: Will the Supreme Court Prevent Citizens United From Being Fixed? (huffingtonpost.com)
- New Democratic “Super PACs” Start Spending (swampland.time.com)
- Koch brothers become political Big Brother (rt.com)
- Senate Democrats to Force Senate Republicans to Vote for Awful Republican Budget (slog.thestranger.com)
- Senator Dick Durbin We Hardley Knew Ye (jonathanturley.org)
- My Superfocus Glasses are supposed to be here tomorrow! I’m excited… (underthelobsterscope.wordpress.com)
Ben Sargent in the Austin American-Statesman:
Republicans favor the Rich and their Budget reflects that case…
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Nick Anderson in the Houston Chronicle:
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Chip Bok at Bokbluster.com:
… but wait until Tax Day and see who really has the Pain and who really makes the Gain…
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John Sherffius in the Boulder Daily Camera:
Just received this in an e-mail from the Daily Kos (to be honest, it was a fundraising letter):
Wisconsin Republicans say the state is too broke to pay for teachers, but they just gave the 26-year-old mistress of a union-busting Republican Senator a state job with a fat raise. It’s a classic Republican scandal filled with hypocrisy, cronyism, and their special version of “family values.”
Here’s the story. Last year, Wisconsin Republican state Senator Randy Hopper left his wife to live with a young Republican political operative. Last month, as Governor Scott Walker unveiled legislation calling for deep cuts in state workers’ salaries and collective bargaining rights, Hopper’s mistress was hired by the state on the advice of Scott Walker’s cabinet as a “communications liaison.” Further, her salary is 35% higher than her predecessor’s.
Randy Hopper is now facing recall.
What is it about Republicans that, no matter what kind of principled stance they claim to be making, they always undermine it with something like this? And they all work together doing it, so you can’t say it isn’t planned. That also means they lie during campaigns and, once they have the majorities they engineer, they go ahead and do what they intended to do… in this case bust unions, get rid of teachers and reward their own.
- Governor Walker’s Admin Gave Married Senator Hopper’s Girlfriend Job With Big Raise, Former Job: Persuasion Partners (unaskedadvice.wordpress.com)
- Wisconsin Republican hypocrisy deepens on 35% raise for Randy Hopper’s mistress (dailykos.com)
- Girlfriend of Wisconsin Republican state Senator gets state job, 36% raise (dailykos.com)
- Song About Wisconsin State Senator Randy Hopper (dekerivers.wordpress.com)
- Young Lobbyists in Love: The Randy Hopper Story (theawl.com)
- WI State Sen. ‘Randy Hopper Knows How To Create Jobs.’ Yep, For His Young Lobbyist Mistress! (crooksandliars.com)
- Girlfriend of Wisconsin Republican state Senator gets state job, 36% raise (alternet.org)
The Republican Party is now facing a great crisis. It is to decide whether it will be, as in the days of Lincoln, the party of the plain people, the party of progress, the party of social and industrial justice; or whether it will be the party of privilege and of special interests, the heir to those who were Lincoln’s most bitter opponents, the party that represents the great interests within and without Wall Street which desire through their control over the servants of the public to be kept immune from punishment when they do wrong and to be given privileges to which they are not entitled.
One hundred years later we see the Republicans having made the anti-Lincoln decision. If he were alive today, Teddy would most likely be a Democrat.
So much for the relationship with History.
- Lawrence Lessig: On the Significance of the Roemer Announcement (huffingtonpost.com)
- Abraham Lincoln and the protests in Madison, Wisconsin. (lifeondoverbeach.wordpress.com)
- Robert Slayton: Republican Chances in 2012 (huffingtonpost.com)
- Right off a Cliff (skydancingblog.com)
- What political party represented the south (wiki.answers.com)
This is a moment of extreme entertainment as the House of Representatives battle over amendments coming from the Republican Congressman King of Iowa trying to stop funding for the Affordable Care Act (which he insists on calling “Obamacare” even though that name has been protested by Democrats). Rosa De Lauro of Connecticut is organizing the Democratic opposition and seems to be doing a pretty good job at it.
Republicans seem to refuse to address the cost of ending the Affordable Health Care Act in lost jobs and extreme cost increases put on Americans by Insurance companies. They are carrying out an assault on the working poor, the elderly and the ill Americans. It is a travesty that we have to go through this.
King is putting out amendment after amendment, all going after the same end: ending what he calls “Obamacare”. Since there is no act with that name, why don’t they just tell him to shut up and sit down?
- Effort to ‘Defund’ the Affordable Care Act Would Hurt Millions of People (yubanet.com)
- Top 10 CR Amendments for Conservatives to Watch – HUMAN EVENTS | Emily Miller (jamespatrick1.wordpress.com)
- Gov. Martin O’Malley: Affordable Care Act (huffingtonpost.com)
- CBS: Majority oppose cutting funding for Affordable Care Act (dailykos.com)
Voting this bill down has cost us students, citizens, soldiers and participants in the economy. Now that the Republicans take over the House in January (and the number of Republicans increase in the Senate), the fight over this legislation will be even harder next year. It will be important for Democrats to keep the intensity up over the idea of welcoming these young people into our citizenry as opposed to shutting them out. And they certainly will have support at this blog.
- Sen. Sherrod Brown: Dems will attempt filibuster reform (thehill.com)
- Bipartisan Support Building Around Three Changes To Senate Rules In New Congress (huffingtonpost.com)
- Will Republican arrogance finally push Democrats to reform the filibuster? (crooksandliars.com)
- Breaking: Reid files cloture on DADT and DREAM Act; votes scheduled for Sat. (pinkbananaworld.com)
- Why filibuster reform is vital: The Founders’ intent was for the Senate to be a majority body, not a supermajority (crooksandliars.com)
… and what Boehner said as well?
This is pathetic. I hope the rest of the Democrats show some guts and pull this down. Of course, that’s not likely to happen.
- No We Can’t: One Progressive Who Sees Obama’s Deal As Weakness (alan.com)
- Message for Boehner – ‘You can’t just … be a bomb thrower’ (politico.com)
- Obama defends tax deal, says he’s kept promises (sfgate.com)
- Leah McElrath Renna: Obama’s Press Conference: Passion Misplaced (huffingtonpost.com)
… and this from FireDogLake’s Founder. Jane Hamsher:
- The Game Is Rigged: On Bush Tax Cuts, Obama Push Back Not What It Seems (fdlaction.firedoglake.com)
- Jane Hamsher on The Last Word: “People Are Hurting; We Need Leadership” (my.firedoglake.com)
- Obama Will Cave On The Bush Tax Cuts, And The Left Is Now Furious With Him (businessinsider.com)
- House Set to Vote on Tax Cuts: Should All Bush Cuts Be Extended? (abcnews.go.com)
- Obama ready to deal on tax cuts (politico.com)
- Senator Reveals All! [Video] (gawker.com)
C-Span has just announced this and Pelosi is about to speak with the Press… Formal announcement won’t take place, however, until tomorrow.
..and by that I mean for everybody. I no longer believe that extending them would aid the middle class… they will just make the deficit worse. It certainly won’t help if we extend them to the wealthy… it will just put is a trillion dollars further into the hole.
What we must see is that when Bush put in the tax breaks eight years ago, they just made everything worse… they did not help as they were supposed to. Remember the definition of insanity? It’s making the same mistake over and over and expecting different results. If the tax cuts are extended, the results will not be different. It will not create jobs. It will leave us in greater debt. We won’t be back where we began, we’ll be far worse.
With good luck, the division between the Dems and the Repubs will prevent ANYTHING from happening. Then, in January, the Republican-controlled House will be faced with a situation where they won’t be able to do anything without working together with the Democrats… and they just may start to solve the problems.
- FACTBOX-U.S. Congress starts ‘lame-duck’ session (reuters.com)
- Voted-out members muddy tax issue (dispatch.com)
- Will Lame-Duck Session Be Productive … or Just Lame? (abcnews.go.com)
- Divided Congress faces key deadlines (boston.com)
- Tax-cut extension deal takes shape on Hill (washingtontimes.com)
- US’s Boehner:To Urge Permanent Bush Tax-Cut Extension W/Obama (forexlive.com)
While Obama still has a Democratic majority for the Lame Duck Session, it appears that he has decided to cave into the Republicans on the Bush Tax Cuts extensions and give the rich the cuts they…deserve? That’s why someone like MaryScott O’Connor hits the nail on the head:
MaryScott O’Connor Commented 3 hours ago
“I’m shocked, SHOCKED to find this Administration bending over for the Republicans again. And by “shocked” I mean… totally unsurprised. What a total WIMP this man has turned out to be. Or… I guess I should say… next to Clinton… Obama is the best Republican President we’ve ever had? What a desolation.”
I guess I have to say that my support for Obama is slipping rapidly. I don’t so much care that he gives in, but that he DOES NOT FIGHT for the things we know to be necessary. In fact, I’d rather be taxed as a member of the Middle Class and help us get away from the deficit than to make sure the rich take out infinitely more than any of the bottom 99%.
What is this man doing? Does he not talk with liberals or progressives? Does he not hear even old guard Repubs like David Stockton who made a statement last Sunday that it was time to back away from the “cut taxes” mentality he introduced under Reagan?
Doesn’t Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi stick a nose in here and vow to get the changes we all hoped for?
I’m utterly pissed!
“November 2nd was a very bad day for Democrats — indeed, the worst since November 8, 1994 when Democrats lost their four-decade hold on the House of Representatives, control of the US Senate and 472 state legislative seats across the country. Newt Gingrich and his new majorities were triumphant. I was polling then for President Bill Clinton and the poll findings today in this joint poll with Resurgent Republic look eerily similar. On election night, an identical two-thirds said the country is seriously off on the wrong track; an identical 45 percent said Clinton and Obama were moving the country in the right direction; and Clinton and Obama had almost identical favorability ratings – split evenly between favorable and unfavorable responses.”
-Pollster Stan Greenberg
- “Mitch McConnell: The Hell With The Economy” and related posts (capitalgainsandgames.com)
- Clinton Pollster: Obama Better Off Now Than Clinton In ’94 (huffingtonpost.com)
- Clinton Pollster: Obama Better Off Now Than Clinton In ’94 (capitolhillblue.com)
- GOP pollster shows how the wave will break (hotair.com)
Here I am in what must be the only near-progressive county in West Virginia. Oh, we voted for Governor Manchin to take the Senate seat (Manchin is many things, but Progressive is not one of them), and Delegate Doyle seems to have made it back. It looks like Democrat Paul Taylor and not Independent Dunleavy is the County Commissioner. (Update: newest results now in and Paul Taylor is not county commissioner, but Walt Pellish, the Republican, has taken a slight edge – BT) My town seems to have supported Virginia Graf for the house, but Shelly Moore Capito (R) was reelected by the rest of the constituency (which stretches irregularly accross the state).
As to the Federal elections and the state governor races. this was the Republicans‘ election. They swept the House, giving John Boehner a seat of power that I fully expect him to abuse. The cut down on the Democrat lead in the Senate, but at least Harry Reid got reelected in the face of a Tea Party Loony looking like she might take his seat. We’re still waiting to see if Patty Murray takes Washington state. That would help keep the Democratic Senate in a working majority situation.
The thing I am most thankful for is that Christine O’Donnell lost by a large margin in Delaware. While she may not be a witch, she is definitely not an intelligent politician and would have made our lives even harder to get through.
Now I want to see how the Republicans are going to both cut taxes and reduce expenditures at the same time. Whenever winning Reps like Rand Paul were asked how they would do it, they sort of smiled and gave us a “you’ll see.” Even Eric Cantor (R – VA), now in a new seat of power couldn’t come up with an answer to the how-will-they-do-it question. I expect a lot of head-on crashes between House and Senate, Congress and Obama, and the people against the government. It’s not going to be pretty.
- West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin Will Fill Sen. Byrd’s Seat (politicsdaily.com)
- Tea party hero Rand Paul wins Senate seat in Ky. (thenewstribune.com)
- Republicans capture House, gain in Senate (reuters.com)
- Republicans aim to deliver stinging blow to Obama (thestar.com)
- Democrat Manchin wins West Virginia Senate seat, NBC projects (reuters.com)
- Teamsters Applaud Manchin Victory in West Virginia (prnewswire.com)
- Manchin wins Byrd’s old seat in W. Virginia (marketwatch.com)
It is titled “Student Lones”:
- Clinton Lauds Student Loan Reform In West Virginia (huffingtonpost.com)
- The Big Dog on the road (washingtonmonthly.com)
- Clinton to young voters: Don’t sit out midterms (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- New Poll Gives Gillibrand Big Lead In N.Y. Senate Race (blogs.wsj.com)
- Polls: Gillibrand, Schumer Keep Senate Leads (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- “Quietly: NY Senate race goes into play as Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand maintains small lead over Joe DioGuardi” and related posts (leftcoastrebel.com)
I am not a Democrat, because I have no idea what their economic policies are; And I am not a Republican, because I know precisely what their economic policies are.
– Barry Ritholtz
Barry’s blog is The Big Picture.
Jeff Danziger in the L.A. Times:
Post Primaries’ Pachyderm Pandemonium…
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– and –
Chan Lowe in the South Florida Sun Sentinel:
Couch Candidates Claim Congress…
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Joel Pett in the Lexington Herald-Leader:
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Pat Bagley in the Salt Lake Tribune:
Whores Walk With Wealth.