Monthly Archives: July 2012

Romney aide to reporters: ‘Shove it!’

Politico

WARSAW — A Mitt Romney aide told reporters to “shove it” Tuesday morning after the American press corps here shouted questions at the presidential candidate.

As Romney was walking away from Pilsudski Square toward his vehicle, reporters asked him about his string of gaffes and whether he had any comment for Palestinians, some of whom took offense at the Republican’s suggestion Monday in Jerusalem that Israel’s economy is superior because of cultural advantages Israelis enjoy. Romney ignored the questions and got in his car.

But his traveling press secretary was furious.

“Kiss my ass; this is a holy site for the Polish people,” said aide Rick Gorka. “Show some respect.”

Gorka then told a reporter to “shove it.”

Gorka subsequently called a pair of reporters to apologize, saying he lost his cool.

“It was inappropriate,” Gorka said.

Romney was at the square to visit the Polish Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. After he did that, laying a wreath and greeting Polish military veterans, the GOP hopeful decided to walk down to a monument on the other side of the square.

(PHOTOS: Mitt Romney in Poland)

Romney has not held a media availability for his traveling press corps since taking three questions outside 10 Downing Street in London last Thursday.

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Tuesday Blog Round Up 7-31-12

 

Cheers and Jeers: Tuesday

Conversion in the Holy Land

How for-profit schools get rich

Scalia open to regulating guns?

The Best TV Show You’ve Never Seen

Former Bachmann staffer sues campaign

Romney Takes ‘You Didn’t Build That’ Global

Romney praises Jews’ cultural ability to make money

Online Education Will Leave Many Students Behind

Greg Sargent: Why Romney keeps attacking things Obama didn’t say

 

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Scott Brown Touts Praise For Ad From Conservative Blog That Claims Obama Is Muslim

Scott Brown: What About All The Rich Schoolteachers?

This really dumb Senator who won Senator Ted Kennedy’s seat  needs to stop pandering to right wing radicals…unless of course he  is a right-wing radical.

The Huffington Post

Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) is raising money off praise from a conservative blogger who believes that President Barack Obama is Muslim.

In an emailed pitch last week, the Massachusetts Republican boasted that his latest ad — which seeks to tie Democratic challenger Elizabeth Warren to Obama’s “you didn’t build that” comments — has been “cheered across the nation by patriots.” He then lists several positive reviews, including one from the conservative blog Libertarian Republican that claimed Obama is a Muslim as recently as last week.

“It has been called ‘powerful,’ ‘devastating,’ and ‘quite possibly the greatest ad for 2012 by any candidate in either party,’ ” Brown wrote in the fundraising appeal, which ends with a request for $100, $50, or $25 donations.

The third accolade comes from Libertarian Republican, which has suggested or stated that Obama is a Muslim on several occasions, although the president has repeatedly described himself as a Christian. As recently as Saturday, Libertarian Republican editor Eric Dondero wrote a blog post about the start of Ramadan under the headline “America’s Muslim President celebrates Islamic holiday.”

Dondero told The Huffington Post on Friday that he was pleased to hear the Brown campaign was promoting his endorsement of the blockbuster ad.

“I think Sen. Brown has always had an appeal to the libertarian wing of the GOP,” Dondero said. “He’s a fiscally conservative, socially tolerant Republican, kind of like a William Weld-type from the 1990s, and we love him.”

Dondero added that it is a “fact” that Obama is Muslim, pointing to a 2008 interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos in which the president references “my Muslim faith” while acknowledging that his opponent then-Republican presidential candidate John McCain had denied such rumors.

The implication that Obama was proclaiming his own Muslim alliance was rated“false” by the urban legend-vetting website Snopes.

A Brown spokeswoman declined to comment Friday.

A Pew Research Center survey released Thursday shows that some Republicans continue to wrongly name Obama’s religion. Among the most conservative respondents, 34 percent said Obama is Muslim, a 14-point increase since Pew asked the same question in October 2008.

Warren’s campaign deferred to the Massachusetts Democratic Party when asked for comment.

“Scott Brown’s decision to cite praise from an extreme, far-right-wing website like this in a personal fundraising appeal speaks for itself,” spokesman Matt House said in a statement.

Dondero’s views on religious affiliation are not limited to Obama. Earlier this month, Dondero called Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) a member of “America’s Muslim Brotherhood,” echoing a controversial claim by some Tea Party lawmakers that the Islamic terrorist organization is trying to infiltrate the federal government.

In a live chat with Boston.com readers Friday, Brown kept the spotlight on the Dondero-backed ad. “The people of MA will have a very real choice this November,” Brown wrote in response to a submitted question about his major differences with Warren. “I would refer people to my ad ‘Let America Be America Again.’”

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Scalia Suggests ‘Hand-Held Rocket Launchers’ Are Protected Under Second Amendment

It’s time for wacky Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia to step down.  There is a possibility that the onset of dementia may have taken over his already depraved mind.

This is yet one more important reason to vote wisely.  Whichever candidate you choose to vote for, know that he will probably pick at least two SCOTUS candidates in the next four years.  In my opinion, the ideology of the candidates will reflect whether the Court will remain staunchly conservative or tip the scales to a more progressive Court.

Elections matter and they DO have consequences.

Think Progress

This morning on Fox News Sunday, Justice Antonin Scalia reiterated just how extremely his Constitutional originalism can be applied. Referring to the recent shooting in Aurora, CO, host Chris Wallace asked the Supreme Court Justice about gun control, and whether the Second Amendment allows for any limitations to gun rights. Scalia admitted there could be, such as “frighting” (carrying a big ax just to scare people), but they would still have to be determined with an 18th-Century perspective in mind. According to his originalism, if a weapon can be hand-held, though, it probably still falls under the right o “bear arms”:

WALLACE: What about… a weapon that can fire a hundred shots in a minute?

SCALIA: We’ll see. Obviously the Amendment does not apply to arms that cannot be hand-carried — it’s to keep and “bear,” so it doesn’t apply to cannons — but I suppose here are hand-held rocket launchers that can bring down airplanes, that will have to be decided.

WALLACE: How do you decide that if you’re a textualist?

SCALIA: Very carefully.

Watch it…

Scalia’s across-the-board defense of weapon-carrying laws is not new, having been at the heart of his majority opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller, which protected an individual’s right to possess firearms. However, his nonchalant suggestion that private citizens could legally carry rocket launchers so long as they’re “hand-held” suggests just how willing he is to protect an armed nation.

Such originalism is a dangerous distortion of 21st-Century reality. There is no conceivable way to apply the Founding Fathers’ understanding of a  ”well-regulated militia” armed with slow-to-load, hard-to-aim muskets to today’s weapon technology. Arguably, the full extent of alleged gunman James Holmes’ munitions could have easily decimated an entire brigade of musketeers before they’d even loaded their first ball.

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Romney Restricts Media For Secret Fundraiser

It appears Mitt Romney thinks he’s such an exceptional and privileged individual that it’s OK for him to break the rules…wherever and whenever he pleases.

Addicting Info

An overseas trip Presidential Republican Candidate Mitt Romney began last Wednesday and that is to last 7 days covering London, Israel and Poland, has been filled with gaffes and it is not yet half over. Perhaps that is the reason that his campaign staff is restricting media access now as Romney travels to Israel.

This restriction violates a pre-negotiated agreement made in April that gave reporters access to all events held in public spaces.

One event being restricted is a fundraising event scheduled at the King David Hotel with guests who are American big-money donors. The agreement says that a pool of television, print and wire reporters can chronicle every Romney fundraiser held in public venues. The exception is fundraisers held in private homes, which the King David Hotel definitely is not.

Romney’s several blunders during his short stay in London are likely a very trying experience for those whose job it is to make him look like an excellent statesman to the media and the world.

Since several of Romney’s wealthiest U.S. supporters plan to attend the fund-raiser which will be held Monday, it is quite suspicious to find this event closed to the press. It is especially suspicious since foreign individuals and organizations are barred from contributing to federal elections. Why is this event suddenly off-limits? Could it be that Romney wants to hide these investors identity from those of his American investors back home? Or is it about the blunders? Or could there be a plan for a SuperPAC coordinated attack, in violation of federal law? Or even, could he be attempting to raise money from illegal sources?

Rick Gorga, Romney’s campaign specialist refused to answer when pressured by reporters about the event restriction. His only comment was, “it’s closed press”.

It’s definitely a suspicious decision on the part of the Romney campaign. What is being kept from the public besides Romney’s tax returns?

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Former FL GOP chair says ‘right-wing crazies’ want to suppress black vote

 

Former Republican Party Chair Jim Greer screenshot via YouTube

Just in case some folks may have thought the post below was merely a fluke…

The Raw Story

Former Florida Republican Party Chair Jim Greer testified in a lawsuit filed against his former party that “whack-a-do, right-wing crazies” wanted to suppress the black vote through Voter ID and tactics like current state Gov. Rick Scott’s efforts to purge voter rolls, according to reporting in the the Tampa Bay Times on Thursday.

“I was upset because the political consultants and staff were talking about voter suppression and keeping blacks from voting. It had been one of those days,” he testified in the 630-page affidavit that spans two days of deposition about a fundraising meeting with party general counsel Jason Gonzalez, political consultant Jim Rimes and Eric Eikenberg, Crist’s chief of staff. Rimes denies the discussion concerned voter suppression to the Times, and Eikenberg did not return the paper’s phone calls.

Greer claimed that the 2010 criminal fraud charges filed against him and other Republicans were part of internal party power scheming designed to push out him and former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, among others.

Crist now classifies himself as a moderate, and criticized Gov. Rick Scott’s “shameless” tactics that suppress voting rights, including requiring photo IDs, preventing felons from voting and purging voter rolls “unconscionable” on Wednesday.

Greer also testified that the party’s budget committee was made up of “whack-a-do, right-wing crazies” who wanted to push Crist and Greer out over political disagreements. including outrage over Crist’s appointment of an African-American judge and anger at Crist hugging President Barack Obama in 2009. “My phone lit up with people wanting me to censure the governor,” Greer testified, according to the Times. “Legislative leaders were using their party credit cards like drunken sailors and they made it clear to me I was not to interfere with their spending.”

Greer resigned after pressure from the party in late 2009, signing a severance agreement that outlined a $130,000 payment. Party officials later denied making the agreement and refused to honor it.

“They took everything I worked for my whole life,” he said, admitting that his family is now on food stamps. “Any good thing I did at the Republican Party has been destroyed by these people. I want my life back. I want them to say they are sorry for what they did to me.”

Watch an interview with Greer, uploaded to YouTube on January 23.

 

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Filed under Voter Suppression, Voting Rights Act of 1965

South Carolina Attorney General Admits Voter ID Won’t Prevent “Voter Fraud”

No one believed the GOP line that there was rampant voter fraud, hence the ID laws in several states…

Think Progress

Taking a break from defending his state’s restrictive voter ID law in court, South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson spoke at a Heritage Foundation panel on Thursday regarding the dire need to prevent the threat of voter fraud. To illustrate, he offered a hypothetical in which a man votes under a stolen identity…by using a fraudulent voter ID card:

WILSON: The ability for someone to come in and, through fraud, dilute the voting pool is very present. I want to be able to give our government the ability to combat that, to give them the tools. It is very difficult to prove a negative. If Alan Wilson goes in and uses a fraudulent voter ID card under the name of John Smith and I vote under John Smith’s name and then leave the polling place, you cannot go back in time and prove the negative. It is impossible. It is very difficult to catch somebody in the act. But I hear countless stories of people who witnessed that.

In Wilson’s imagined scenario, a voter uses a fake ID to cast an extra vote. But his own argument rests on the idea that the requirement to show ID at the polls is necessary to combat rampant voter fraud and identity theft. By this logic, voter ID laws would do nothing to prevent this threat.

Watch it:

In-person voter fraud like the type Wilson claims to prevent is extremely rare. It is so rare, in fact, that a person is more likely to be struck by lightning than commit voter fraud. Even the Supreme Court could only identify one example of in-person voter fraud in the past 143 yearsin their 2009 decision upholding a voter ID law.

By contrast, a recent Brennan Center report found that nearly 500,000 voters — mostly low-income and minority individuals — in the ten states with voter ID laws stand to be disenfranchised.

Wilson has sued the Department of Justice for blocking South Carolina’s voter ID law, arguing, “The changes have neither the purpose nor will they have the effect of denying or abridging the right to vote on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority.”

According to the ACLU’s estimate, 180,000 voters will be affected by the South Carolina law, with minority voters hit hardest by the new requirements.

This isn’t the first time Wilson’s hypotheticals have fallen flat. After he claimed over 900 dead voters cast ballots in South Carolina, an investigation by the State Election Commission found no evidence to back him up. Wilson has continued to insist that the threat of dead voters is real, and repeated the statistic at the Heritage Foundation on Thursday.

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Politico’s: Week in one liners: Cain, FLOTUS

AP Photos

Politico

The top quotes in politics …

“Of course it’s easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere.” — British Prime Minister David Cameron tweaking Mitt Romnney.

“I love the fact that the guy is rich.” — Former White House hopeful Herman Cain defending  Romney.

“I wish my kids would become wealthy.”  Vice President Joe Biden on making money.

“They were asking me to do the Dougie, there just wasn’t the beat.” — First lady Michelle Obama on getting asked to dance.

“My, my, my how carefully they read that bill.” — House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer ridiculing  Republicans for a typo.

“The inspiration for that is definitely Elle Woods.” — New York state Senate candidate Mindy Meyer linking her pink campaign site to “Legally Blonde.”

“They’re not watching ‘Real Housewives.’ I’m just saying.’” — President Barack Obama telling  young Americans about their global competition.

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West Wing Week – 7-27-12 or “A Brighter Day Is Going To Come”

 

The White House

This week, the President addressed the nation on the tragedy in Colorado and made Aurora his first stop on a four day trip out West, then continued to Reno to address the VFW, and to New Orleans to speak at the National Urban League.

Back in Washington DC, Dr. Biden announced a major Joining Forces initiative for social workers, the President signed an Executive Order on Education, and hosted a reception at the White House to honor the International AIDS Conference taking place in Washington DC.

 

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#RomneyShambles

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