Not Good and Paw-lenty for 2012

Nov 24 2009 Published by under Featured News

A recent poll in Minnesota by St. Cloud University showed Governor Tim Pawlenty coming in 10 points behind President Obama if Pawlenty were to run against Obama in 2012. St. Cloud is located in the center of Minnesota, part of the extremely conservative 6th district which elected notorious Congresswoman Michele Bachmann to office not once but twice.

This was not a new poll result for Pawlenty. Other polls have shown similar numbers. In March of 2009, a Rasmussen poll showed that a whopping 61% of Minnesotans did not think Pawlenty should run for president in 2012. A Rasmussen poll in May 2009 showed 55% didn’t think he could win the nomination for 2012.

Governor Pawlenty had been among those thought to be under consideration for John McCain’s running mate during the 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota, prior to McCain selecting Sarah Palin for the position.

Pawlenty is considered a potential candidate for the GOP 2012 presidential race, and has been touring the country speaking at conservative and Republican events, including turning up to promote the losing Conservative candidate in the New York 23rd Congressional District, instead of supporting the more moderate GOP candidate Dede Scozzafava. Palin was another of the possible 2012 hopefuls to turn up far from home to get noticed and to promote the Conservative Party candidate.

Is it just me, or does it make sense that a serious presidential candidate should be able to carry the vote in their own state?

Pawlenty, or “T-Paw” for short as he is referred to in Minnesota, has announced that he will not run for a third term as governor, although he has decent approval ratings in the polls for his performance as governor. Which makes it perhaps the more confusing to note that this suggests that there are some people who like him well enough as governor, but who dislike the idea of him as a possible President, or at least as a candidate running for President.

A poll from the Minneapolis newspaper, The Star Tribune, from September 2009 indicated that 30% of Minnesotans would like Pawlenty to make a bid for the presidential candidacy, with 55% indicating they don’t want him to run. A statement by “T-Paw” advisor Alex Conant, quoted in an article by CNN Political Director Paul Steinhauser stated (with typical Republican math) “the fact that half of the voters in a liberal leaning state like Minnesota would consider voting for a conservative like Pawlenty is a real testament to his strong record as governor.”

At the time Conant made the comment, the STrib poll indicated one in four Minnesotans said there was a good chance they’d vote for him, but the results did not indicate if a hypothetical opponent was named. Another one in four indicating there was at least some chance they might vote for him. However 43% indicated there was no chance they would vote for Pawlenty for president.

In the meantime, Pawlenty’s approval ratings for his job as governor continue to decline, as he leaves a difficult political scene in Minnesota where there is a great deal of controversy over the state budget. Pawlenty has been described as perhaps less conservative than some of the more extreme right base of the Republican Party, but is frequently described as conservative ENOUGH.

It is expected he may try to appeal to the more conservative views of the narrow GOP base in part by trying to campaign for votes for conservative candidates in other states. For example, in a recent Iowa presidential poll for the Des Moines Register, Pawlenty was viewed favorably by 17%, unfavorably by 10%, not sure 73%. In comparison, Palin was viewed unfavorably by 55% of those polled. But will campaigning for conservative candidates in other states help T-Paw win at home? His declining numbers in Minnesota are headed the wrong way for a presidential win in his home state.

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Sarah Palin Floats Glenn Beck as a Possible 2012 Running Mate

Nov 18 2009 Published by under Featured News

In an interview with Newsmax, Sarah Palin floated Fox News host Glenn Beck’s name as her running mate for 2012. Palin said, “But Glenn Beck I have great respect for. He’s a hoot. He gets his message across in such a clever way.” Apparently, Palin’s qualifications for a running mate include that they be a “hoot.”

Palin chuckled when asked about the possibility of a Palin/Beck ticket and said, “I can envision a couple of different combinations, if ever I were to be in a position to really even seriously consider running for anything in the future, and I’m not there yet. But Glenn Beck I have great respect for. He’s a hoot. He gets his message across in such a clever way. And he’s so bold – I have to respect that. He calls it like he sees it, and he’s very, very, very effective.”

Are we to believe that Palin would seriously consider Beck as her running mate? She doesn’t want some credible conservative, or a policy expert. No, Sarah wants a running mate who is bold and a hoot. Is there anyone out there who can still be possibly wondering why most of the political world does not take Sarah Palin seriously?

Democrats would be doing somersaults at the very prospect of a Palin/Beck ticket. It would be a dream come true for them, while also nuking what remains of the Republican Party. I can see Palin blaming Beck when on Election Night the ticket gets 24% of the vote.

If Palin is looking for a running mate who is a hoot, maybe she should also consider Jeff Dunham. I sure his puppets would keep her in stitches for hours on the campaign trail.

H/T:Think Progress

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FNC’s Napolitano: Palin Lacks the Mental Capacity to be President

Nov 17 2009 Published by under Featured News

On Fox News Radio’s Brian and The Judge show, Judge Andrew Napolitano unloaded with both barrels on Sarah Palin. Napolitano said, “I just don’t think she possess the mental capacity to be the President of the United States. She’s a goofball.”

Here is the audio courtesy of Media Matters:

After playing a clip from Palin on Oprah complaining about Katie Couric asking her what she read, Napolitano said, “I rolled my eyes and I was annoyed with the question, so I sounded like a goofball, I read most of them. I read all of them. I read any of them. It reinforced the notion that John McCain chose her for reasons having nothing to do with her competence to replace him should he become president, and unfortunately not be able to serve his full term.”

Later Napolitano told his listeners how he really felt about Palin, “I agree with her on many of the issues, but I just don’t think she possesses the mental capacity to be the president of the United States. She’s a goofball.”

When even those hard core conservatives like Napolitano think Palin lacks the mental capacity to be president that is not a good omen. I think that the Judge’s comments about her highlight just how ineffective she has been in changing the perception that she is a flaky intellectual lightweight who isn’t up to the job of being president.

Her book is generating a ton of publicity for her, but her position on the political landscape remains the same. Sarah Palin is still a deeply polarizing figure who a majority of Americans do not feel is qualified to be president. I don’t know if I would call her a goofball, but the notion that she lacks the intellect to be president will be virtually impossible for her to overcome.

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Even Lou Dobbs Wouldn’t Vote for Sarah Palin in 2012

Nov 17 2009 Published by under Featured News

Former CNN anchor Lou Dobbs was on the Today show this morning talking about the potential 2012 Republican presidential candidates. When it came to Sarah Palin, Dobbs said, “Would I consider voting her? Frankly based on what I have seen, personally no.” Things are looking bad for Sarah, when even Lou Dobbs says no thanks.

Here is the video courtesy of Think Progress:

Matt Lauer asked Dobbs about Palin staking out her political turf for 2012. He answered, “Well she’s certainly the front-runner in terms of her popularity in the Republican Party and therefore, de facto, it seems to me Matt she’s staking out her territory.”

Lauer followed up by asking the much more interesting question, would Dobbs support Palin. Dobbs said, “Would I consider voting her? Frankly based on what I have seen, personally no. … I think the woman had a brilliant address at the Republican convention last year. I think uh, since then, she’s left a lot to be — uh, I’ll put it this way — desired as a person who’s seeking votes.”

Dobbs was basically making the point that Palin is all sizzle and no steak, and he is right. Even crazy Lou Dobbs can see that Palin is the Paris Hilton of politics. She is famous for being famous. When someone like Lou Dobbs claims that Palin is weak on the issues, what does that say for her ability to convince non conservatives that she is qualified and competent enough to be president?

In a non-Palin related thought, it will be worth watching what happens to Dobbs after the buzz surrounding his resignation from CNN dies down. Bill O’Reilly announced last night that he is making Dobbs a semi-regular on his top rated show, which foreshadows the inevitable Dobbs move to the Fox News/Business family. I still think that Dobbs ends up on Fox Business, not Fox News.

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Hillary Clinton Offers Diplomacy over Coffee with Palin

Nov 15 2009 Published by under Featured News

Sec. of State Hillary Clinton was on NBC’s Meet The Press today. At the end of the interview she was asked about Sarah Palin’s comment in her book about the possibility of sitting down for a cup of coffee with Clinton. She said, “I’m ready to have a cup of coffee. Maybe I can make a case on some of the issues that we disagree on.”

Here is the video:

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Moderator David Gregory asked, “Should Secretary Clinton and I ever sit down over a cup of coffee, I know that we would fundamentally disagree on many issues, but my hat is off to her hard work on the 2008 campaign trail.” Is this somebody you’d like to sit and have coffee with, and do you plan to read the book?”

Mrs. Clinton gave a very fitting and diplomatic answer, “Well, I absolutely would look forward to having coffee. I’ve never met her. And I think it would be, you know, very interesting to sit down and talk with her. And I’ve got more than I could say grace over to read, but obviously in the next week there’s going to be a lot of attention paid to her book. And I’m sure that, you know, I’ll see excerpts printed and, you know, snippets of interviews as I, you know, channel surf in, in Singapore and in Shanghai and in Beijing. But, you know, I’m ready to have a cup of coffee. Maybe I can make a case on some of the issues that we disagree on.”

The chances of this chat happening anytime before the conclusion of the 2012 election are slim and none, but I could see this happening one day when both Clinton and Palin are out of politics. If Clinton is serious about retirement after her time as Secretary of State, a friendly chat would certainly be possible, but politicians, like boxers, never really retire.

It is fascinating that Hillary Clinton has become a trailblazer for women in both political parties that aspire to the presidency. The cynical side of me says that Palin is still trying to peel off Clinton’s 2008 supporters for her future presidential run. Palin appears to be oblivious to the fact that most Clinton supporters despise her. Their chat would be interesting, and easy fodder for another Tina Fey/Amy Poehler SNL reunion.

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Sarah Palin Accuses the AP of Lying About Her Book

Nov 13 2009 Published by under Featured News

A grumpy Sarah Palin posted a note on her Facebook page which claims that the AP’s report on the contents on the book is erroneous. It doesn’t seem to matter to her that the AP has actually read the book, because she said, “And as is expected, the AP and a number of subsequent media outlets are erroneously reporting the contents of the book.”

The AP bought a copy of her book early and was able to spill the beans on Palin’s complaints about the McCain campaign, Katie Couric, and her daughter Bristol’s pregnancy. Palin essentially called the AP a liar on herFacebook page, “As you probably have heard, the AP snagged a copy of my memoir, Going Rogue, before its Tuesday release. And as is expected, the AP and a number of subsequent media outlets are erroneously reporting the contents of the book.”

She urged her fans to buy the book, “Keep your powder dry, read the book, and enjoy it! Lots of great stories about my family, Alaska, and the incredible honor it was to run alongside Senator John McCain.” She should have posted, please buy my book. Please, please buy my book. Don’t listen to the nation’s dominant wire service, listen to me.

Instead of blaming the bookseller who sold the book early, Palin is blaming the Associated Press for reading it. Her charge that the AP is erroneously reporting on the book is complete nonsense. By acknowledging that the AP got a copy of the book, it is hard to believe that they would incorrectly report its contents.

The book sounds like exactly what one would expect from Palin. It is going to be short on policy, but full of blame for everyone else associated with the 2008 campaign except her. In the world of Sarah, when things dog wrong it is always someone else’s fault. This woman has never taken responsibility for any of her previous mistakes, so why should she start now?

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2012 Watch: Sarah Palin Finally Heads to Iowa

Nov 09 2009 Published by under Featured News

Even though numerous potential 2012 Republican presidential candidates have recently starting blazing a path to the Hawkeye state, the one notable exception has been former Alaska governor Sarah Palin. That is going to change in December, when Palin will come to the state, not to campaign, but to hawk her book.

Barnes & Noble announced today that, “The world’s largest bookseller, announced today that Sarah Palin, former governor of Alaska and vice presidential candidate, will kick off the book tour for her new autobiography, Going Rogue: An American Life, with a book signing at the Woodland Mall Barnes & Noble in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Ms. Palin will continue her tour at select Barnes & Noble bookstores nationwide. Going Rogue traces one ordinary citizen’s extraordinary journey, and imparts Sarah Palin’s vision of a way forward for America and her unfailing hope in the greatest nation on earth.”

Low and behold, Palin will be in Sioux City, IA on December 6 at 1:00 to sign copies of her book. Palin isn’t heading to Iowa to campaign for her fellow Republicans, or to start building a network ahead of the state’s presidential caucuses. Nope, she is heading to the state to sell some books. I don’t begrudge anyone the chance to earn a living, but one would think that if Palin was serious about running for president, she might do a little more in Iowa than sign a few autographs.

It is becoming apparent that Sarah Palin isn’t that interested in running for president. As crushing as this idea must be to her fans and followers, Palin is not acting like someone who has serious presidential ambitions. What she is trying to do is cash in on her 15 minutes of fame. Until there is some evidence that Palin is putting together a serious organization for 2012, I will continue to doubt that she is a legitimate contender for the presidency.

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Hillary Clinton Says She Won’t Ever Run for President Again

Oct 12 2009 Published by under Featured News

Sec. of State Hillary Clinton was on NBC’s Today show this morning when she was asked whether or not she will ever run for president again. Clinton said, “No. I mean, this is—this is—a great job. It is a 24/7 job. And– I’m looking forward to retirement at some point.”

Here is the video:

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The bulk of the interview consisted of foreign policy questions, but Ann Curry asked Sec. Clinton if she wishes she was the one making the big decisions instead of Obama. Clinton answered, “I have to tell you, it never crosses my mind. In–No. Not at all. My– I am part of the team that makes the decisions. And that is the way it should be. You know, usually, in the past, not always, the Secretary of State was in constant battles with the White House. Or with the defense department. And some of it, to be very honest, was nothing but ego. It was, “No. This is me. I’m supposed to be the important person here.”

When she was asked if she will ever run for president again, Clinton answered, No. No. I mean, this is—this is—a great job. It is a 24/7 job. And– I’m looking forward to retirement at some point.” This is exactly what the Sec. of State should be saying right now, but Hillary Clinton has been a strong team player since her campaign ended, so I think she would find it hard to say no, if there was support for her candidacy in 2016.

The one possible reason that she might not run again was the one she mentioned, age. Hillary Clinton will be a senior citizen if she serves two terms in the Obama administration. After spending virtually every year in Washington since 1992, she may want to retire. If she is serious about retirement, she would surely disappoint millions of supporters, who would love to see nothing more than for her to take another run at the White House.

I know that some Republicans go to bed at night dreaming about the possibility of Clinton taking on Obama again, but this is simply not going to happen. If Hillary Clinton runs again, it will be with the full blessing of President Obama. There would be no Democratic civil war, because Clinton has done a fantastic job fitting into Obama’s administration.

HT:Political Wire

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Is the Nobel Peace Prize behind Obama’s Jump in Approval Ratings?

Oct 12 2009 Published by under Featured News

According to today’s Gallup daily tracking poll, President Obama’s approval rating has gained five points in the past week, and has jumped to 56%. The Gallup poll now matches other national polls that have seen the president’s numbers rising lately, but is his winning the Nobel Peace Prize behind the most recent increase?

There has been speculation that the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to the president on Friday is behind the bump in his numbers, but this doesn’t explain his improvement in other polls taken over the past week. CBS, AP, and McClatchy all have released polls that show Obama’s job approval rating at 56%.

The answer can be found by looking at the approval numbers for his handling of the economy and healthcare. As the economy starts to improve, so do Obama’s numbers. The moved from 50%-54% approval on the economy in the CBS News poll over the past month. In the AP poll, Obama moved 44% to 50% approval on the economy, and the McClatchy poll found that the number of people who are becoming more pessimistic about the economy is declining.

The opposition to the Democratic healthcare reform proposal appears to have lost steam, as in the CBS poll, the number of people who support reform remains at the same 47% that it was in September, but the people who oppose reform has declined by 3% to 42%. The AP poll also reveals a jump in support for healthcare reform to 48%.

The point is that Obama can get all the prizes and awards in the known universe, and it won’t matter. His approval ratings, like any other president, are being driven by the economy. If the economy continues to improve, so will Obama’s approval ratings. I believe that the healthcare debate will have no lasting political impact for the president.

He will get another bump upwards in his numbers after he signs the healthcare reform bill, but in terms of pocketbook politics, any potential legislation won’t take effect until 2013, so while it may motivate the Republican base in 2010, it is not going to have legs with the broader electorate in 2012.

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Republicans David Brooks and Mike Murphy Say No to Palin In 2012

Oct 04 2009 Published by under Featured News

While discussing Sarah Palin’s new book both conservative columnist David Brooks and GOP strategist Mike Murphy agreed today on Meet The Press that Sarah Palin will not be the GOP nominee in 2012. Brooks went as far as to say, “And if Sarah Palin is the nominee, the Republican nominee, I’ll eat my hat.”

The original question posed by moderator David Gregory related to the harsh partisan nature of the current political debate. Brooks said, “There’s no evidence–Barack Obama was not evidence of that harshness, John McCain was not evidence of that harshness. The people who actually vote, even in primaries, who are pretty hard-core people, they don’t go for that. So it’s a, it’s a margin on the edge. And if Sarah Palin is the nominee, the Republican nominee, I’ll eat my hat. I’ll eat this cup on the air. But she will not be, because people just don’t like that style of politics.”

Mike Murphy argued that Palin has no constituency, “Yeah. No, no, look, she has a constituency. She’ll never be the nominee, I totally agree with David. I agree with Steve Schmidt, it would be actually a disaster if she was the nominee. I do wish my friend Steve felt that a year ago when a lot of people were asking John McCain to put her on the ticket.”

The argument that Palin has no natural constituency is valid to a degree. Mitt Romney will court the fiscal conservatives, Mike Huckabee is strong with the evangelicals, but he may have to battle for their support with Rick Santorum, and we have yet to see who Tim Pawlenty will appeal to. However if all of these candidates stick to their bases, Palin could emerge as the only candidate that can appeal to multiple groups.

The other factor that Palin has working in her favor is that both Romney and Huckabee are failed candidates. 2012 would be Palin’s first primary cycle, so she could have the fresh candidate factor working for her. I still have serious doubts as to whether or not Palin is seriously committed to a presidential run. I think that she has the ambition, but she may not be willing to do the grunt work required to win a nomination.

I don’t think any of the potential Republican candidates look like formidable challenge for Obama. They all have major weaknesses, and limited strengths. In the case of Palin, she has done nothing to make herself a stronger candidate.

Voters rejected her because they didn’t think she was qualified to be VP in 2008, and so far, she has done nothing to ease voters’ concerns about her qualifications to be president. Both Brooks and Murphy seem to be of the opinion that if Palin runs in 2012, she will be exposed for the weak candidate that she is.

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