Friday, June 10, 2011

“Over? Just because all of my top staff left on the ‘Midnight Train To Georgia’? Are you kidding me? Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell, I don’t know the meaning of the word ‘over’ unless it’s front of the word weight, but that’s not important now! Do you have any idea how much time and effort I’ve put into becoming this corpulent and irrelevant since my own party forced me to resign from Congress in 1999? I, Newton Leroy Gingrich, along with my long-time wife of over 10 years, the lovely and smokingly-hot Miss Callista, aka ‘Number 3’, will continue annoying America with our finely honed message of frugality, careful nutrition, exquisitely-timed vacations, multi-religious conversions, my wife’s mystifying choice of a spouse, and most of all the difference between a marquis cut diamond from a place like Zales and one from Tiffany. Now, as the ushers prepare to take up collection, let us join the choir in singing our new campaign theme song, Chicago’s ‘If You Leave Me Now’.”

What the Newt Gingrich staff implosion means for the 2012 Republican race

THE GLOVES ARE OFF!

Stars collide: Michele “Kelly” Bachmann vs. Sarah “Beyonce” Palin

*** The strong GOP front-runner? As it’s turned out, Mitt Romney has had a great last seven days, even if Sarah Palin stepped on his toes last Thursday. The economic message he unveiled in his announcement couldn’t have come at a better time for him (amid bad economic news for the Obama White House). The new Washington Post/ABC poll, which shows him leading Obama, helps with fundraising and highlights his electability credentials. And a robo-poll finds him with a sizeable lead in South Carolina, where he wasn’t planning to heavily compete. All of which raise this question: Is Romney a stronger front-runner than we all thought? It’s easy to list his weaknesses — his 2008 campaign, his health-care law, his past flip-flops — but we can’t dismiss the bounce he’s received since announcing his presidential campaign and the other strengths he  brings to this campaign.

*** Great Expectations: But there’s a flip side to this early bump: expectations. When you talk to Team Romney, they are a bit nervous about getting ahead too quickly. As Howard Dean, Hillary Clinton, and even Romney himself found out the hard way in 2008 (after being the ONLY Republican that year to lead in both Iowa and New Hampshire, at the same time), being the front-runner — in the summer before the nominating contests — is a precarious position. There’s nowhere to go but down…*** What the Rollins hire says about Bachmann’s potential campaign: Michele Bachmann’s emerging campaign team took a shot at Sarah Palin, with new strategist Ed Rollins criticizing her for not being serious. “Sarah has not been serious over the last couple of years,” he said on FOX. But Rollins brings both the good and bad for Team Bachmann. As Mother Jones’ David Corn has uncovered, Rollins previously questioned Bachmann’s own seriousness after her Tea Party response to President Obama’s State of the Union. But the most significant thing about Bachmann’s hiring of Rollins is that it should end — once and for all — the simplistic/conventional Acela Corridor analysis that always puts her in the same space with Palin. The fact is, Bachmann went out of her comfort zone and hired a top Republican strategist. Palin hasn’t, and she probably wouldn’t ever do that. Bachmann’s not fighting for the same space as Palin; she’s fighting in the same space as Herman Cain, Rick Santorum, even Tim Pawlenty. So, folks: Be careful on this Palin vs. Bachmann media narrative. It borders on, well, you know…

*** Five reasons to take Bachmann seriously: In the next week, Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann, thanks mostly to her decision to participate in next week’s Republican primary debate, is going to be getting her first big moment in the national political spotlight. For the last two years, she’s been a caricature — a spoof on “Saturday Night Live,” a political lightning rod, and an easy target for some folks to try and use her as a way to drive independents or moderates away from the GOP. But here are five reasons to take Michele Bachmann seriously in the race for the Republican nomination: One, there’s clear evidence she’s running (hiring Ed Rollins, participating at the debate). Two, she’s going to able to raise money, lots of it (take a look at what she raised last cycle). Three, she will stand out at the debates. Four, she’s going to be the only female in the field (if Palin doesn’t run). And five, and most importantly, she has the ability to win over the sizeable number of Republicans who were cheering on Donald Trump (for a while) and who are listening to Herman Cain (right now). This segment of the GOP wants a candidate who will carry the Tea Party banner, who talks strongly about his/her religious faith, and who will take the fight to President Obama.

*** A female Huckabee who can raise money? In this respect, Bachmann has the POTENTIAL to be this cycle’s female version of Mike Huckabee — and she can do something Huck never could do: raise lots of money. An instant player in Iowa and South Carolina? Check. A key attraction at the debates? Check. Will take the fight to Obama, as well as Romney, Huntsman, and Pawlenty? Check. Of course, this doesn’t mean she WILL catch fire come next year. But if we’re thinking about candidates who could be the lone alternative still standing against Mitt Romney after Feb. 2012, Bachmann has to be on the list. By NBC’s Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, Domenico Montanaro, and Ali Weinberg

Mark Halperin in the new issue of TIME on why Romney’s stock is way up—but not a sure thing.

What phrase best describes Mitt Romney’s strategy?

Playing possum. Overexposure is the normal mode for someone who wants to beat an incumbent President, but Romney has lain low for months. Behind the scenes, he has traveled widely, meeting with potential supporters, collecting campaign cash and only rarely appearing before cameras. Romney’s aides believe that keeping him out of the line of fire from the left and the right will allow him to enter 2012 as he entered 2011 — as the unquestioned front runner for the nomination. Some old pros, previously dubious about Romney’s chances, are now saying more admiringly, “Fear the possum.”

Why is he so far ahead of his rivals?

Two numbers tell the story. First, Romney’s fundraising haul for the first half of the year is likely to be more than that of all the other contenders combined. Second, a recent Washington Post/ABC News poll showed Romney narrowly beating Barack Obama in a general-election matchup — the only Republican to do so. The possum strategy works best when the media train their attention on non­-candidates and long shots such as Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann. That has cut off oxygen to Romney’s real rivals, Tim Pawlenty and Jon Huntsman.

So is he a lock for the nomination?

Romney has two indisputable problems [EM] and a big question mark. Many rival strategists believe that as soon as Republicans start confronting Romney on his Massachusetts health care law (complete with its Obama-style individual mandate), he will be deemed unacceptable by GOP voters. And questions persist about his personality. He is described as having difficulty relating to voters or, more harshly, as a phony. Finally, as the candidates shift from denunciations of the President to attacks on one another, we will learn whether the polished, often uptight Romney can take a punch.

Newt Gingrich: ‘We make decisions as a couple’

“We make decisions as a couple. I think most couples would find that refreshing, not a problem and I think that what we’ve been trying to do is carry messages to the American people and listen to the American people and you’ll see us over the next few weeks doing it in new and dynamic and much more open ways than the traditional consultants are comfortable with. “Translation: “I’m whipped and can’t get out.”

Mitt Romney To Skip Iowa, Florida Straw Polls Straw rejoices!

 

 

 

 

 

 

“I sold all my ties to pay for this campaign. But, should you elect me president, I will purchase several ascots from the ‘Roland S. Martin’ Collection. That is my solemn, Mormonistic vow to you sir.”

Jon Huntsman’s no-names strategy

“Gosh darn it to heck – I’m one ridiculously handsome man!”

You can say silly s**t like this, “Herman Cain Pledges Not To Sign Any Bill Longer Than Three Pages”, when your first name is Herman and there’s a better chance of Herman Munster being the Republican nominee for president than your being it.

NEWS

Daniels declines Perry invite

The man who made “truce” one of the political buzzwords of 2011 is opting to attend the state fair over Rick Perry’s “day of prayer and fasting” for America. The Courier Journal:

Texas Gov. Rick Perry – who is mulling a run for president – has invited the country’s 49 other governors to a “a day of prayer and fasting on behalf of our troubled nation” but a spokesman for Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels says he won’t be attending. 

The event is scheduled for Aug. 6, which is opening weekend for the Indiana State Fair, an event Daniels isn’t going to miss, said his spokeswoman.

UPDATE: A Perry spokesman confirms that just one governor has agreed to attend so far, Republican Sam Brownback of Kansas. It appears that very few of his fellow governors want to be seen with “Reverend” Perry at his proposed Pray-In.

Chris Christie Anti-Union Bill In New Jersey Would Restrict Collective Bargaining Rights

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Read my lips: I am NOT fat! I’m just grossly under-tall for my height. Capiche? Now, hand over the cannoli and there won’t be any trouble.”

Rep. Peter King Announces Second Round Of Muslim Radicalization Hearings

“Look into my eyes America, and I will transform you all  into radical Christian extremists before you know what hit you.”

Two sides of Barack Obama on display

 

 

 

 

 

RANDOM THOUGHTS

When former Newt Gingrich spokesman Rick Tyler told the Associated Press, “We had a different vision for victory and since we couldn’t resolve that difference, I didn’t feel I could be useful in serving him”, what he really meant was, “This fat, serial marrying m*****f***** didn’t have a non-Kenyan’s chance of winning the Boston Marathon in becoming the Republican nominee in 2012.”

In 1992, for Bill Clinton, it was “the economy, stupid” and in 2008, for John McCain, it was the stupid economy. In 2012, for Barack Obama, it very well may be a combination of both.

Speaking of the economy, could a McCain/Romney ticket have triumphed over Obama/Biden in ’08? I’m just wondering…

It’s going to be very interesting to see how the “Palinites” respond to these comments from Bachmann campaign manager Ed Rollins – “Sarah has not been serious over the last couple of years,” he said. “She got the vice presidential thing handed to her, she didn’t go to work in the sense of trying to gain more substance, she gave up her governorship.”

“Michele Bachmann and others [have] worked hard,” he said. “She has been a leader of the Tea Party which is a very important element here, she has been an attorney, she has done important things with family values” – made during a radio interview Tuesday.

When did Congressman Anthony Weiner (I would have changed my name on my 18th birthday – who wants to go through life with a name like Anthony?) find the time to get his wife pregnant?

If only the transition from Jay to Conan (and back to Jay) had been as seamless as the one from Meredith to Ann Ann Curry’s ‘Today’ Host Debut (VIDEO)

Bravo for Edie Falco saying out loud ‘Who The Hell Is Kim Kardashian?’ what I’m sure many of her peers have been saying off-the-record.

This Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Foundation to help homeless teens is a very good thing.

Why is okay for Danny Aigne to trade for Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to team up with Paul Pierce on the Celtics but wrong for Pat Riley to get Chris Bosh and LeBron James through free agency to join Dwyane Wade in Miami? Can anyone explain this to me like I’m a fifth grader?

I know everybody – well, almost everybody – in Lakerland is dreaming of seeing Dwight Howard in purple and gold after next season, but for my money, the better fit for Howard in Los Angeles, particularly as a free agent, is with Blake Griffin and Eric Gordon on the Clippers. I’m just saying…

I bet you didn’t know that since 1979, only three franchises from the NBA’s Western Conference have won the Finals. Can you name them?

Forget the fact that you never give yourself a nickname, but how can you call yourself The Most Dominant Ever when you never led the NBA in rebounding or blocked shots and was never first-team all-defense? Yeah, I’m talking about Shaquille Roshon O’Neal.

I’m not saying that he didn’t deserve being fired Bob Geren was fired as Oakland A’s manager on Thursday, but I’m absolutely mystified how GM Billy Beane never, ever seems to take the blame for Oakland’s failure to win. After, Beane is the one picking the players and managers.

After reading the recent Sports Illustrated expose on the tawdry “Jim Tressel Era” at Ohio State University, I’m much more surprised about Tiger Woods missing the U.S. Open than Terrelle Pryor leaving Ohio State before his senior season.

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