• Why Is Romney Trying to Turn Obama Into Carter?: It is easy to guess why Romney is trying to make the connection. Carter was the last incumbent Democratic President to lose a general election. In fact Carter was the only incumbent Democrat to lose a general election in the past century. During his third year in office, Carter had the lowest approval rating of any President from Eisenhower to Obama. And like Obama now, Carter also suffered from a weak economy going into his re-election campaign, and Romney is obviously again hoping a weak economy produces a Republican victory.
While this tactic may appeal to older voters, it’s not clear how younger voters will respond. At an emotional level, they may find Carter to be a strange political boggeyman. Everyone under 31 wasn’t even born yet when Carter left office. Even those under 40 would likely barely remember his tenure. This means roughly half the electorate will have almost no direct memory of the Carter presidency, but may have impressions of Carter’s activities in recent years. In fact, a recent PPP poll found that Americans under 30 had a net favorable opinion of Carter and actually viewed him more favorably than George H. W. Bush, George W. Bush and even Ronald Reagan.
Of course given that the GOP has increasingly become the party of older Americans, the fact this line probably doesn’t resonate with younger adults might not really concern Romney. [firedoglake/Jon Walker/02 May 2012]
• Wife of NC State Senator says Amendment One is necessary ‘to protect the Caucasian race’: I don’t even know where to begin to unpack this trash. Chad Nance who is a freelance journalist in Winston-Salem and is covering the election here in NC, recorded the wife of NC Sen. Peter Brunstetter confirming that she believes that Amendment One’s destiny is not only to save marriage, it apparently also has something to do with white power preservation. (!) [firedoglake/Pam Spaulding/02 May 2012]
• Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett: Forced Ultrasounds Are ‘the Way to Go’: Republican Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett is asserting that forced ultrasounds are “the way to go” if they stop women from having abortions. Corbett had been criticized for supporting one of the most restrictive anti-abortion bills in the country because he said that women could just “close your eyes” during the mandatory ultrasound. The bill was eventually shelved by the state House, but Corbett recently told The Seattle Times that he still supported the measure. [crooksandliars/David/02 May 2012]
• Major GOP Donor Arrested in $100 Million Veteran Charity Scam: The U.S. Marshal Service announced Tuesday that it had captured one of America’s Most Wanted fugitives who is accused of creating a fake charity for Navy veterans that funneled some of the $100 million collected to Republican candidates. Between the early 2000s and 2010, a man using the alias “Bobby Thompson” collected millions from unsuspecting donors for the charity U.S. Navy Veterans Association (USNVA), which claimed to provide support for members of the U.S. Armed Forces. Officials believe that very little, if any, of the money was ever used as intended, according to the U.S. Marshal Service. To help legitimize his charity, Thompson allegedly donated part of the ill-gotten funds to Republican candidates like former President George W. Bush, former Republican presidential candidate John McCain and House Speaker John Boehner. [crooksandliars/David/02 May 2012]
• Adding Insult To Injury, Surviving Military Spouses Can’t Get Retirement Benefits Unless They Remarry After 57: Bob Geiger has an upsetting piece at Huffington Post about something called the “Widow’s Tax,” a government practice that financially penalizes surviving spouses of soldiers killed in battle. [crooksandliars/Susie Madrak/02 May 2012]
• Romney spokesman quits after right-wingers freak out about his being gay – Anti-gay conservatives hound foreign policy spokesman Richard Grenell into quitting the campaign: You may know Richard Grenell as the Romney “foreign policy spokesman” who had a history of writing dickish things — mainly sexist “jokes” — on Twitter. He has resigned, Jennifer Rubin reports, from the Romney campaign. Not because he didn’t have the sense not to post his offensive jokes about Hillary Clinton and Rachel Maddow in a public venue to begin with, or because he then stupidly attempted to scrub his Twitter history after everyone had already seen the posts, but because he is gay, and that grossed out a bunch of creepy right-wingers. [salon/Alex Pareene/01 May 2012]
• Border Vigilante Identified As Gunman In Arizona Massacre: Longtime white supremacist and border vigilante JT Ready saw himself as part of a war that few others would fight. He amassed weapons. He donned a uniform. He formed his own brigade of volunteers to walk alongside him as he hunted what he described as “narco terrorists” flowing across the Arizona-Mexico border. On Wednesday, reports out of Arizona said Ready died, not at the hands of drug runners, but with his own gun during a mad rampage inside a suburban home just east of Phoenix. Along the way, the reports said, he took the lives of four other people, including a toddler. The Arizona Republic reported the victims were Ready’s girlfriend, her daughter, the daughter’s boyfriend and the daughter’s 18-month-old baby. Ready still somehow managed to use the event to blame immigrants even after his death. A posting on his Facebook page appeared hours after the massacre took place. [talkingpointsmemo/Nick R. Martin/02 May 2012]
• Meet the Group That Gives Addicts Drug Money to Get Sterilized — and the Right-Wingers That Fund Them: Don’t let a pregnancy ruin your drug habit,” the slogan on the fliers reads. Another says, “She has her daddy’s eyes…and her mommy’s heroin addiction.” Then: “Get birth control, get ca$h.” These are posters that show up nationwide in homeless shelters and methadone clinics, in AA and NA meeting rooms and near needle exchange programs, distributed by volunteers for Project Prevention. Formerly called Children Requiring a Caring Kommunity (CRACK), the controversial nonprofit pays drug addicts $300 to either undergo sterilization or use a form of long-term, “no responsibility needed” birth control. …Others say that if addicted women are viewed as not responsible enough to have a baby, then they should also be viewed as not responsible enough to give informed consent to having a serious medical procedure in exchange for drug money. …Another of her favorite comparisons, not surprisingly, is to dogs. “We don’t allow dogs to breed,” she said. “We spay them. We neuter them. We try to keep them from having unwanted puppies, and yet these women are literally having litters of children.” Given the chance to distance herself from this comment on a segment on 60 Minutes II, she doubled down, saying, “It’s the truth—they don’t just have one and two babies, they have litters.” [The Fix/Jed Bickman/03 May 2012]
• DEA left college kid handcuffed for 4 days with no food or water, drank own urine, tried suicide: His crime was smoking pot. Oh my God, this story just gets worse and worse. He was handcuffed the entire time. And now the Associated Press is on the story, and you have to think that there’s more to this if AP is buying it. As we noted yesterday, this college kid was apparently getting high with his friends on 4/20 day when DEA agents busted in, arrested them, and without even charging him with anything, threw him in a holding cell, handcuffed, and left him for 4 days with no food, water, a toilet, anything. They just left him. The kid had to drink his own urine – an expert says this may have saved his life – and he finally tried to commit suicide after having hallucinations, and with his vital organs starting to shut down. If this story ends up being true, a lot of heads need to roll, and this kid needs to get the $20 million he’s seeking and then some. Horrific story. [Americablog/03 May 2012]
• Anti-SOPA leader Mozilla breaks with tech companies to oppose CISPA: “While we wholeheartedly support a more secure Internet, CISPA has a broad and alarming reach that goes far beyond Internet security,” a Mozilla spokesman told Andy Greenberg at Forbes. “The bill infringes on our privacy, includes vague definitions of cybersecurity, and grants immunities to companies and government that are too broad around information misuse,” Mozilla added. “We hope the Senate takes the time to fully and openly consider these issues with stakeholder input before moving forward with this legislation.” [RawStory/Stephen C. Webster/02 May 2012]
• “The Israeli military has closed its file on the killing of 21 members of a Palestinian family during the Gaza war in 2009, saying there were no grounds for criminal or disciplinary action against those responsible for the shelling of the house in which civilians were sheltering.”
• Deaths of Protesters Lead Egyptian Politicians to Suspend Presidential Campaign: Thugs, very possibly backed by the continued military dictatorship in Egypt, attacked protesters at dawn on Wednesday in front of the Ministry of Defense in al-Abbasiya, Cairo, leaving some 20 dead. The protesters suspect that they were actually plainsclothes police….As a result of the deaths, both fundamentalist and liberal parties cancelled a planned meeting with the officers, who still form a collective interim presidency in Egypt. [juancole/03 May 2012]