Gov. Haslam, speakers want to keep judge appointments
The state's top Republicans want to place a ballot measure before Tennessee voters to eliminate any constitutional questions about the current system for appointing judges.
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#1 Jan 28, 2012
No Democrat Should Want Gingrich Nominated
By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog
26 January 12
epublicans are worried sick about Newt Gingrich's ascendance, while Democrats are tickled pink.
Yet no responsible Democrat should be pleased at the prospect that Gingrich could get the GOP nomination. The future of America is too important to accept even a small risk of a Gingrich presidency.
RIsk averse people didn't travel the Oregon trail, or build the transcontinental railroads. They didn't leave everything they knew to travel to a country where they didn't speak the language. This right here is a big part of our problem: our deciders, and the pundits who support them, think they have something to lose. They've forgotten the truth in the saying Nothing ventured nothing gained. They;ve forgotten that in the long run, we're all dead. Life is risk, and a Gingrich campaign would be a great teachable moment for the country. A crazy spokesperson for an insane and discredited political philosophy. Possibly the end of the southern stragtegy? That would be worth the risk.
Land of the Skeered and home of the fleeced. Our ancestors would be surprised and disappointed.
The Republican worry is understandable. "The possibility of Newt Gingrich being our nominee against Barack Obama I think is essentially handling the election over to Obama," says former Minnesota Governor Tom Pawlenty, a leading GOP conservative. "I think that's shared by a lot of folks in the Republican party."
Pawlenty's views are indeed widely shared in Republican circles. "He's not a conservative - he's an opportunist," says pundit Joe Scarborough, a member of the Republican Class of 1994 who came to Washington under Gingrich's banner. says the representative of the party that has triumphed using the divisive southern strategy. If that isn't opportunistic what is? Gingrich doesn't "have the temperament, intellectual discipline or ego control to be either a successful nominee or president,"says New York Republican representative Peter King, who hasn't endorsed any candidate. "Basically, Newt can't control himself."
Gingrich is "an embarrassment to the party," says New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie, and "was run out of the speakership" on ethics violations. Republican strategist Mike Murphy says "Newt Cingrich could not carry a swing state in the general election if it was made of feathers."
"Weird" is the word I hear most from Republicans who have worked with him. Scott Klug, a former Republican House member from Wisconsin, who hasn't endorsed anyone yet, says "Newt has ten ideas a day - two of them are good, six are weird and two are very weird."
#2 Jan 28, 2012
Newt's latest idea, for example - to colonize the moon - is typically whacky.
The Republican establishment also points to polls showing Gingrich's supporters to be enthusiastic but his detractors even more fired up. In the latest ABC News/ Washington Post poll, 29 percent view Gingrich favorably while 51 percent have an unfavorable view of him.(Obama, by contrast, draws a 53 percent favorable and 43 percent unfavorable.)
Independents, who will be key to the general election, are especially alarmed by Gingrich.
As they should be. It's not just Newt's weirdness. It's also the stunning hypocrisy. His personal life makes a mockery of his moralistic bromides. He condemns Washington insiders but had a forty-year Washington career that ended with ethic violations. He fulminates against finance yet drew fat checks from Freddie Mac. He poses as a populist but has had a $500,000 revolving charge at Tiffany's.
And it's the flagrant irresponsibility of many of his propositions - for example, that presidents are not bound by Supreme Court rulings, that the liberal Ninth Circuit court of appeals should be abolished, that capital gains should not be taxed, that the First Amendment guarantees freedom "of" religion but not "from" religion.
It's also Gingrich's eagerness to channel the public's frustrations into resentments against immigrants, blacks, the poor, Muslims, "liberal elites," the mainstream media, and any other group that's an easy target of white middle-class and working-class anger.
These are all the hallmarks of a demagogue.
Yet Democratic pundits, political advisers, officials and former officials are salivating over the possibility of a Gingrich candidacy. They agree with key Republicans that Newt would dramatically increase the odds of Obama's reelection and would also improve the chances of Democrats taking control over the House and retaining control over the Senate.
I warn you. It's not worth the risk.
Even if the odds that Gingrich as GOP presidential candidate would win the general election are 10 percent, that's too much of a risk to the nation. No responsible American should accept a 10 percent risk of a President Gingrich.
I'd take a 49 percent odds of a Mitt Romney win - who in my view would make a terrible president - over a 10 percent possibility that Newt Gingrich would become the next president - who would be an unmitigated disaster for America and the world.
Robert Reich is Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton. He has written thirteen books, including "The Work of Nations," "Locked in the Cabinet," "Supercapitalism" and his latest book, "AFTERSHOCK: The Next Economy and America's Future." His 'Marketplace' commentaries can be found on publicradio.com and iTunes.
#3 Jan 29, 2012
Republicans Big Lie;
Karl Rove is an example of the Republican right-wing approach of using "Big Lies" to achieve their goals. And the louder and longer the lie campaign continues, the more people will start to believe the lies.
The Republicans running for the Presidency are trying to show you that they are running against President Obama, but the Obama they paint for you to dislike is "an imaginary Obama." They have conjured up an Obama who does not exist. Their Obama is their "Imaginary Opponent," much like a 3-year-old child with an imaginary friend.
Because the Republicans are such masters of the Big Lie , they are using it again in this election season. They are accusing Obama of things Bush did years before Obama took office. Then the Republicans got their chance to rebut the President's State of the Union Address.. And Mitch Daniels was perfect in his ability to lie to the public, his ability to provide misdirection, and his ability to rewrite history" all with a straight face. Mitch Daniels' entire speech was the factual opposite of the speech President Obama gave.
Some of the brazen falsehoods offered up by the candidates who remain standing today.
Mitt Romney wrote a book called "No Apology," and has repeatedly said on the campaign trail that Obama took a world tour at the beginning of his presidency to issue mea culpas to dastardly foreigners everywhere. This lie is so brazen not only because it never happened, but also because Romney uses the talking-point in speech after speech.
As James Taub noted in the New York Times, "In a major speech in Cairo in 2005, Condoleezza Rice, then Mr. Bush's secretary of state, said that "for 60 years, my country, the United States, pursued stability at the expense of democracy in this region here in the Middle East - and we achieved neither."
During a January 16 debate, Mitt Romney said of Obama, "Three years into office, he doesn't have a jobs plan." As the AP notes, "Like them or not, Obama has proposed several plans intended to spur the economy and create jobs." As the AP notes ... In September, Obama introduced his most recent jobs plan, rolling it out in a speech to the full Congress in which he urged Congress to "pass it right away." It included $450 billion in tax cuts and new spending, including greater cuts to payroll taxes and tax breaks for companies that hire those who've been out of work for six months or more. Almost none of it has been passed into law.
What Romney said in a conference call with Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition: "Then of course there's the assault on religion. Now Obama has gone forward and said that religious institutions, universities, hospitals and so forth, religious institutions have to provide free contraceptives to all their employees, even if that religious institution is opposed to the use of contraception, as in the case of the Catholic Church. It's an assault on religion unlike anything we have seen. There's been an assault on marriage. I think Obama is very aggressively trying to pave the path to same-sex marriage."
First, Obama himself doesn't favor gay marriage nor supports DOMA. Second, as Igor Volsky (who reported Romney's comments for Think Progress) notes, "Federal regulations contain clear provisions in three separate laws shielding federally funded healthcare providers' right of conscience."
The 1976 Church Amendment "prevents the government, as a condition of a federal grant, from requiring healthcare providers or institutions to perform or assist in abortion or sterilization procedures against their moral or religious convictions."
#5 Jan 30, 2012
Republicans are pigs they want all of your food.
Gingrich Wants Kids To Work As Janitors, But Refused To Work Himself1236
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