Shorter Question Everything
Seriously, who is in charge? It’s not Romney, but we all sort of knew that. Some of us thought it would be Ryan, but all the things that made up Ryan got poured out and filled up with more Romney. Neither of them is in charge, and both are so completely beholden to the loony right wing fringe of their party that every time they say something, their team is ‘correcting’ it. So why are they running? Don’t the people of the US, to say nothing of the rest of the world who will have to deal with the US, have a right to know?
Ryan and Romney waffle
• Who’s really in charge here?: Campaign aides for Republican vice presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) busied themselves this weekend with telling reporters that the candidate “agrees with Mitt Romney” on keeping marijuana illegal, despite him telling a Colorado television station that he supports letting states flout federal laws on medical marijuana.
• Romney campaign walking back candidate’s statements about healthcare, almost the moment he made them. Again, who’s in charge here?
• Flip flop flip flop flip – I’ve lost count: Last night, Romney appeared on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show, offering the far-right host an entirely new perspective on his approach to health care policy. “Well of course I’m going to repeal Obamacare,” Romney said. “I’ve said that on the campaign trail, I think, every single day. Obamacare must be repealed — in its entirety. It’s bad policy, it’s bad law, and frankly, a $2 trillion entitlement we don’t want and we certainly can’t afford…. Obamacare is a disaster in my opinion, and has to be repealed entirely.” I see. So Romney is for the “complete repeal” of the Affordable Care Act. That is, until Sunday, when he said he’s “not getting rid of all” of the Affordable Care Act. That is, until Monday night, at which point he intends to destroy the “entirety” of the Affordable Care Act. He also wants to eliminate the protections for those with pre-existing conditions, and he wants to keep the protections, and he wants to eliminate the protections, and he wants to keep the protections but not really. Will he change his mind again today? And maybe again tomorrow? Your guess is as good as mine.
• Why five studies cited by Romney [in Meet The Press interview] further prove his plan will raise taxes on the middle class:
– Harvard Professor Martin Feldstein’s, which, as the Center for American Progress’ Seth Hanlon pointed out, didn’t take into account Romney’s corporate tax cut, redefined the middle class, and cherry picked numbers to overstate savings.
– Princeton Professor Harvey Rosen’s, which, as UC Berkeley economist Brad DeLong noted, says Romney’s tax cuts will cause economic growth that every other recent tax cut package has failed to deliver. “We simply do not see such supply responses in the historical record, do we?” DeLong asked.
– American Enterprise Institute’s Matt Jensen’s, who claimed that the TPC study did not take into account that Romney may eliminate “the exclusion of interest on state and local bonds and the exclusion of inside-buildup on life insurance vehicles.” TPC re-ran the numbers to include eliminating those deductions and found that “our main result still holds.” Another AEI tax expert said, “It’s not as if the entire philosophical approach [Romney's] pursuing is doomed…But he’s going to need to cut rates significantly less than 20 percent if he wants to honor his other goals.”
– A pair of Wall Street Journal editorials that add no new information and merely regurgitate right-wing talking points.
…Update – Feldstein is an official adviser for the Romney campaign, while Rosen worked in the administrations of both President George W. Bush and President George H.W. Bush.
• Here we go again. From this Sunday’s Face the Nation, vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan repeats the notion that his voting to send people’s kids off to die invading countries that weren’t a threat to us as foreign policy experience.
• Romney to David Gregory, Meet The Press:
…[H]e stumbled when asked if he ever spent time with the unemployed, telling Gregory “Well — actually — just — last night it was. I was with — a person who is facing some challenges.” He was then unable to describe those challenges.
…Romney told Gregory he “likes parts of” Obamacare.
…Romney also said “it would be my preference” if Supreme Court justices he appointed “reverse Roe v. Wade.”
…Romney also pledged to reverse President Obama’s decision to provide funding to international groups that use non-U.S. funding to either provide abortion services, or merely mention them as an option for pregnant women (widely known as the “global gag rule” or the “Mexico City rule”).
…Romney wouldn’t commit to balancing the budget until the end of his second term, and maybe even as late as 2023; his running mate Paul Ryan’s budget won’t balance until 2040.
…Gregory asked Romney twice which loopholes he would close, but Romney dodged him both times, and Gregory failed to push again. (Over on ABC, Paul Ryan likewise ducked George Stephanopoulous on the same question.)
Right wing cesspool
• The US is a theocracy now?: Mitt Romney suggested that President Obama has taken God out of his heart during a rally in Mansfield, Ohio on Monday, telling a crowd of manufacturing workers that unlike the current occupant of the White House, he will always be guided by the Almighty. The comments appear to be a new post-convention Republican strategy to paint Obama as anti-God: ROMNEY: I believe it’s important to have a president and I will be a president, if elected, that honors that pledge and all the pledges that I made. [The Pledge of Allegiance] says that we are a nation under God…. If I become president of the United States, I will not take God out of my heart, I will not take God out of the public square and I will not take it out of the platform of my party.
• Again – is the US a theocracy? – Right wing freakout of the day – Obama doesn’t mention the word ‘god’ in 911 proclamation. Like who else?: It turns out that George W. Bush did not mention God for his “Presidential Proclamation—Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance” for 5 of 8 such proclamations — meaning that the majority of these proclamations did not include the word “God.”
• Allen West: Obama campaign has ‘Soviet Union, Marxist-Socialist theme’: Tea party favorite Rep. Allen West (R-FL) is slamming President Barack Obama for using the word “Forward” as his campaign slogan, insisting that it is an “old Soviet Union, Marxist-Socialist theme.” “This is about whether we continue to be a republic governed by the Constitution,” West told a Republican Jewish Coalition rally in Boca Raton, Florida on Sunday. “Or will we become a liberal-progressive, bureaucratic, welfare nanny state, which is exactly what the other side wants?” He continued: “They want to bring out an old Soviet Union, Marxist-Socialist theme for their campaign called ‘Forward’. I have to ask you one simple question. Where is the Soviet Union today?”
• Romney’s greatest foreign policy coup: So there are a substantial number of voters in both Ohio and North Carolina who believe that Mitt Romney is responsible for killing Osama bin Laden. Seriously.
• Not someone to emulate, and certainly not likely to help with the Latino vote: Mitt Romney’s campaign strategist, Matt Rhoades, recently revealed the Republican candidate’s historical role model: James K. Polk, the president from 1845-1849.
• Pat Robertson: Since ‘we don’t condone wife-beating these days’ husband should ‘move to Saudi Arabia’ to beat her.
• Incoherent Daily Caller silliness – Dick Cheney tries to blame Obama for 911, or something: Former Vice President Dick Cheney took a shot at President Barack Obama late Monday night after it was reported that the president has attended fewer than half of his daily intelligence briefings. “If President Obama were participating in his intelligence briefings on a regular basis then perhaps he would understand why people are so offended at his efforts to take sole credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden,” Cheney told The Daily Caller in an email through a spokeswoman. – But what do Barack Obama’s people say about this very grave charge? Oh, just that he reads the PDBs instead. As if anybody would ever believe a president could read words, on paper.
• What the hell is North Carolina Republican Rep. Walter Jones doing on a white supremacist radio show? A North Carolina Republican congressman appeared on a notorious white nationalist radio program on Saturday to talk up legislation he co-authored accusing President Barack Obama of committing impeachable offenses. Rep. Walter Jones, a fiercely anti-war congressman who often breaks with his party on key votes, appeared on the “Political Cesspool,” a Memphis-based program hosted by ardent white nationalists James Edwards and Eddie Miller. The show’s mission statement is blunt: “We represent a philosophy that is pro-White and are against political centralization,” it declares.
• On Thursday, Virginia State Delegate Bob Marshall (R) spoke at a press conference against state funding for Planned Parenthood. He blasted the organization for supporting a women’s right to choose, saying that God punishes women who have had abortions by giving them disabled children: “The number of children who are born subsequent to a first abortion with handicaps has increased dramatically. Why? Because when you abort the first born of any, nature takes its vengeance on the subsequent children,” said Marshall, a Republican.
• So much for being pro-business: GOPers now trying to destroy small business owner who bear-hugged Obama. Obama must be destroyed. So anyone who shows any sign of humanity vis-a-vis the President – like this Republican small businessman who gave Obama a bear hug yesterday when the President stopped in his pizza joint – must also be destroyed. They’re attacking his Yelp profile and voting down his business in order to convince people that it’s not a reputable business, and ultimately hurt the small business owner financially. All because he hugged the President of the United States.
• America’s Longest Temper Tantrum: Young children are difficult to handle sometimes. They can be selfish, believing the world revolves around them, and whatever they want is important and necessary. It’s impossible to reason with a young child, simply because their brains have not reached a level of maturity that can handle compromise and cooperation. And, shockingly, we now have an entire political party made up of children.
• Obama Cracks a Birther Joke: President Barack Obama was at an Orlando sports bar where he met 7-year-old Andre Wupperman. The boy told the president he was born in Hawaii. The president greeted the boy with a “shaka” sign and asked if he had a birth certificate. (Sept. 9)
• Joe Arpaio’s BirtherFest Canceled Due to Crappy Ticket Sales. The Greater Phoenix Tea Party Patriots group admits it just couldn’t sell enough of the $10 tickets to hold the event, which was scheduled for September 22 at the Celebrity Theatre.
• Shooting of CIA agents by Mexican federal police an accident: Mexican security officials. High-ranking Mexican security officials are portraying the shooting of two CIA agents by Mexican federal police as a well-intentioned mishap rather than a deliberate attack. A series of military and law-enforcement officials have emphasized in public statements over the last three days that the group of 12 federal police was investigating a kidnapping when they encountered the two U.S. agents and a Mexican marine captain and opened fire on their armoured sport-utility vehicle.