Category Archives: President

First Presidential Debate = BINGO!

Get your checklist out for tonight. The first presidential debate will take place tonight, in Colorado, and as usual, we can play BINGO with buzzwords:

big government




Supreme Court


debt ceiling

fiscal cliff


energy independencd

Social Security




middle class

(insert foreign country)

(Insert foreign leader)

leading from behind

Wall Street

(insert random US cabinet department)

fiscal cliff



Obamacare/Affordable Care Act/Romneycare

99% and/or 47%

“you didn’t build that”

bin Laden

Fast and Furious

(insert swing state)

I would be shocked – hell, I might drop dead – if 90% of those don’t show up tonight.

The Haunting of Politico

Politico is out with an article…“10 Quotes that Haunt President Obama.”

When and how will Mitt Romney use them in the debates?

(1) “Washington is broken. My whole campaign has been premised from the start on the idea that we have to fundamentally change how Washington works.”

“Mr. President, you have done nothing to fundamentally change how Washington works. In fact, you’ve perpetuated the stereotype of secrecy, backroom deals, and misleading the American public.”

(2) “I think that I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters. I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I’ll tell you right now that I’m gonna think I’m a better political director than my political director.”

“Mr. President, your policies have been absolutely terrible for this country and you have repeatedly gone with your gut, against the American people…your political director and policy directors should be doing the job you entrust them with.”

(3) “If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.”

“Mr. President, the economy hasn’t rebounded, unemployment is not where you promised…you don’t have this done, and therefore, should be a one-term president.”
(4) “Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not, and a way that Bill Clinton did not.”
“Mr. President, if you do not believe Bill Clinton changed the trajectory of America in a meaningful and positive way, how can you have him speaking on your behalf across the country?”
(5) “Guantanamo will be closed no later than one year from now.”

“Mr. President, this is just another example of your failed promises. Guantanamo is still open and you put the American people in danger by attempting to transfer these terrorists onto domestic soil.”

(6) “I think that health care, over time, is going to become more popular.”

“It wasn’t when you tried to pass it and it still has yet to become popular.”
(7) “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages, and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages.”
“Mr. President, up until the election year, you were not supportive of legalizing same-sex marriage; in fact, Vice President Dick Cheney was more progressive on the issue than you were…until you needed more votes.”
(8) “It’s here that companies like Solyndra are leading the way toward a brighter and more prosperous future.”

“The greatest example of why the stimulus failed and why we cannot continue the path we are on for the next four years.”
(9) “I fought with you in the Senate for comprehensive immigration reform. And I will make it a top priority in my first year as President.”

“You sold out the Latino community until you once again needed their vote.”
(10) What we have done is kicked this can down the road. We are now at the end of the road and are not in a position to kick it any further. We have to signal seriousness in this by making sure some of the hard decisions are made under my watch, not someone else’s.”

“Mr. Obama, your own political director and former campaign manager says we don’t need to address entitlements this year…you and your administration have continued to kick the can down the road, to put it for someone else’s administration to handle.”
Go get ’em, Mitt!!

Comparing the Benches

So with the Republican National Conference over and the Democratic National Convention starting, one only has to look at the speakers to see who the rising stars (“the benches”) are for each party. Let’s put them in a depth chart


  • First String: VA Gov. Bob McDonnell; WI Gov. Scott Walker; SC Gov. Nikki Haley; NJ Gov. Chris Christie; LA Gov. Bobby Jindal; SD Sen. John Thune; Former Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice; WI  Rep. Paul Ryan; FL Sen. Marco Rubio
  • Second String: NH Sen. Kelly Ayotte; OK Gov. Mary Fallin; NV Gov. Brian Sandoval; KY Sen. Rand Paul; OH Sen. Rob Portman; PR Gov. Luis Fortuño; NM Gov. Susana Martinez; Former FL Gov. Jeb Bush; TX Sen. Ted Cruz
  • Third String: ND Sen. John Hoeven; TN Rep. Marsha Blackburn; WA Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers; Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love; OH Gov. John Kasich; Former MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty


  • First String: CO Gov. John Hickenlooper; Former VA Gov. Tim Kaine; MD Gov. Martin O’Malley; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; MT Gov. Brian Schweitzer; MA Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren
  • Second String: Newark Mayor Corey Booker; San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro; Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel; Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx; NC Sen. Kay Hagan; Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Vice President Joe Biden; MN Senator Amy Klobuchar; Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Vilagarossa
  • Third String: WI Senate Candidate Tammy Baldwin; House of Representatives Candidate Joaquin Castro; MA Gov. Deval Patrick; Former OH Gov. Ted Strickland; Houston Mayor Annisse Parker

Mid-Morning Dump, August 28th

Not so much a mid-morning dump as usual, just some things to ponder.

  • Republican National Convention starts today. There’s a surprise speaker on Thursday…The Boss?! Roll call for Pres/VP is tonight, along with Kelly Ayotte, Mary Fallin, Bob McDonnell, Scott Walker, Nikki Haley, Ann Romney, and Chris Christie.
  • Second CT Senate poll (Q-poll) shows the same as Rasmussen…49-46 Linda McMahon over Chris Murphy. Second time around?
  • CBS poll: Obama 46-45 over Romney amongst registered voters; ABC had it 47/46 Romney yesterday; 7-day Gallup, Romney +1; 3-day Rasmussen Obama +2
  • New Orleans is gonna be hammered again…by Isaac this time. Predicted to hit 7 years, to the day, after Katrina.

That’s about it. Doing this all day:

Compelling Television?

If you’ve been paying attention to the TV the past six weeks, you know Political Animals ended on Sunday with a thrilling slightly-longer-than-an-hour finale to its inaugural six-episode miniseries. Is there anything that can’t be condensed and solved in a six-episode miniseries? I think not.

Political Animals was the story of Elaine Barrish, former First Lady-turned Governor-turned Presidential Candidate-turned Secretary of State (huh, that sounds really familiar), who deals with the stress of being the nation’s top diplomat for her rival, and the drama of being the former First Family after divorcing her husband, former President Bud Barrish.

The show started off strong. Elaine’s oldest son is her chief of staff and her youngest son, who came out of the closet while the family was in the White House, still struggles with a drug addiction. Elaine clashes with President Garcetti (the Italian-American Barack Obama), Vice President Fred Collier (a more folksy, asshole version of Joe Biden), and Elaine’s former campaign manager-turned Garcetti’s Chief of Staff Barry Harris.

In all this is Elaine and the Barrish family’s relationship with Susan Berg, a reporter who won a Pulitzer for her work on Bud’s sex scandal while in office. At first thoroughly disliked by Elaine, Susan comes to earn her respect and becomes integral as the series progresses.

Elaine decides she is going to challenge Garcetti in his re-election attempt, despite some members of her family less than thrilled. To head her off, Garcetti offers her (again) to be his running mate. While she decides whether to run with him or against him, on a trip to France, Air Force One, with the President, crashes. VP Collier assumes the temporary duties of the President (after Elaine convinced him to assume the duties under Section 4 of the 25th Amendment — he initially wants to be sworn in as President, which would pose a Constitutional crisis should Garcetti still be alive, effectively giving the US two Presidents). The series ends ambiguous to whether Elaine will run again or allow Collier to run in Garcetti’s place (assuming he is deceased, the series does not confirm at the end).

Political Animal was a great show capitalizing on the phenomenon of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, with a backstory that mirrored Hillary and the 2008 campaign and rumors of her challenging President Obama in 2012. Whether or not the show will be picked up for a full season (or another small miniseries) has not been decided, but seeing as how most “progressive” political dramas have died, I am not hopeful.

I speak, of course, of Commander in Chief. President Teddy Bridges dies and Independent Vice President Mackenzie Allen becomes the nation’s first female president. Commander in Chief was a show ahead of its time, as it aired on ABC before Hillary Clinton ran for President in 2008. TV shows depicting female Commanders in Chief/Presidents rarely get rave reviews. These female leaders are too weak, too unable to separate personal lives from their jobs, etc. They did it to Geena Davis in Commander in Chief; they did it to Mary McDowell in Battlestar Galactica (42nd in line of succession after a nuclear attack). Surprisingly, the only one that I’ve heard get good reviews: Cherry Jones as President Allison Taylor in 24 (defeated incumbent President in the serious, the only one of the 4 mentioned to have won on her own).

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