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Romney’s Gaffe Tour

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I agree with David Kurtz at TPM:

First and most important, talking up the innate superiority of the Israelis over the Palestinians isn’t, by any definition, a gaffe. That’s real, with real geopolitical consequences. He didn’t misspeak (and I’m not sure one can “misspeak” about such things anyway), and his initial claim to have been misinterpreted has been trumped by his decision to reiterate all the same points to the conservative audience at National Review.

Second, it’s hard to imagine Romney’s gaffes, missteps, and flat-out egregious mistakes happening if he had a different, i.e., solid, foreign policy team advising him. (Ignore the silly, DC-centric focus on whether his press team mismanaged the ensuing uproar.) Romney has no core foreign policy team. It’s also a team without a core. No surprise since it serves mostly to check the box of various conservative foreign policy constituencies. David Rothkopf can and does explain this part of it a lot better than I. Go read him.

The easy flourish to conclude with here would be drawing a heavy black line from Mitt’s team not having a core to Mitt himself not having a core. Maybe that’s true. But Romney is not the first presidential nominee to wind up saddled with an advisory team that is designed for political reasons to reflect the various constituent parts of his party instead of designed to get the real, difficult work done in service of the nominee. So you don’t have to reach the ultimate conclusion about Mitt’s own core — unless and until he fails to fix his team.

By |2013-11-03T17:15:56-04:00August 1st, 2012|Elections, Party Politics|Comments Off on Romney’s Gaffe Tour

I got you, babe

In the late 1970s, Sonny and Cher sang this cute tune. They were singing to each other. Now our Senators are singing the same song to Wall Street. Brown-Kaufman was a reasonable proposal. It limited the size of banks to a percentage of our GDP. The proposal went down in flames. Why? Wouldn’t limiting bank size actually help the middle class? I thought that’s what Congress wanted to do… help the middle class?

Simon Johnson has more:

The Brown-Kaufman SAFE Banking Amendment proposed a hard size cap on our largest banks, limiting their assets to a very small fraction of the size of our economy.  The premise was simple – and could fit on a bumper sticker (or in a campaign flyer for November) – “too big to fail” is too big to exist.

But this proposal to modify the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill failed in the Senate in early May, by a vote of 33-61, with 27 Democrats voting against the idea.  Since that time, Democratic supporters have been asking their representatives the obvious question: Why did you vote against Brown-Kaufman?

Interestingly, no senators yet have replied – at least on the record – that the power of the megabanks was too great to be overcome.  Instead, there are three main arguments going the rounds.

First, some argue that the Brown-Kaufman would by itself not have completely solved all the problems that can cause our financial system to meltdown.  As one senator put it in a recent letter, “[Brown-Kaufman] would not solve the problem of systemic risk and systemically important institutions in a comprehensive manner.” (more…)

By |2010-08-21T09:11:19-04:00August 21st, 2010|Economy|Comments Off on I got you, babe

Rape victim confronts Senator Vitter

Now, this is getting something from a blog that got something from another blog and now, I’m giving the information to you.  The good news is that you don’t even have to wash your hands. Just read and be revoked by Senator Vitter.

From Think Progress– Rape Victim Confronts Vitter Over His Vote Against Franken’s Amendment Holding Contractors Accountable:

Last month, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) proposed an amendment to the 2010 Defense Appropriations bill that would withhold defense contracts if companies “restrict their employees from taking workplace sexual assault, battery and discrimination cases to court.” Although the amendment passed, 30 Republican senators voted against it.

One of the Republicans singled out for especially harsh criticism following the vote was Sen. David Vitter (R-LA), who has a track record of siding againstwomen’s rights. The Huffington Post’s Sam Stein reports that at a town hall meeting this past weekend, a constituent confronted Vitter about his vote. The woman, a rape victim, demanded that he explain why he opposed Franken’s amendment. Vitter refused to give her a straight answer.

As Sam Stein noted at the HuffPo–“The exchange was contentious, heart wrenching, and potentially damaging.”

WOMAN: It meant everything to me that I was able to put the person who attacked me [behind bars]. And what allowed me to do that was our judicial process. I showed up in court every day to make sure that happen.

VITTER: And I’m absolutely supportive of any case like that being prosecuted criminally to the full extent of the law.

WOMAN: But there are rape victims who are being kept silent.

WOMAN: But how can you support [a law] that tells a rape victim that she does not have the right to defend herself?

VITTER: Ma’am The language in question did not say that in any way shape or form.

WOMAN: But it is unconstitutional to have a law that says a woman does not have a right to defend herself.

VITTER: You realize Mr. Obama was against that amendment that his administration was against that amendment

WOMAN: But I’m not asking Obama. I’m asking you.

VITTER: Do you think he’s in favor in rape?

WOMAN: I’m asking you Senator. What if it was your daughter who was raped? Would you tell her to be quiet and take it? Would you tell your daughter to be silent?

By |2009-11-03T18:20:33-04:00November 3rd, 2009|Senate|Comments Off on Rape victim confronts Senator Vitter
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