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Archive for May 17th, 2008

ARG Poll: Obama Holds Small Lead in Oregon

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:38 am by HL

ARG Poll: Obama Holds Small Lead in Oregon
A new American Research Group poll in Oregon shows Sen. Barack Obama edging Sen. Hillary Clinton, 50% to 45%.

Key findings: Obama leads among men 57% to 39% and Clinton leads among women 51% to 44%. Obama leads among white voters 51% to 44% and Clinton leads among Hispanic voters 50% to 46% (6% of the vote). Obama leads 55% to 38% among those 18 to 49 and Clinton leads 52% to 45% among those 50 and older.

Also: Obama and Clinton are tied at 49% each among those saying they have already returned their ballots (2% refused) and Obama leads 52% to 40% among those saying they will definitely return their ballots by the May 20 deadline (42% of likely voters in the sample).

What Went Wrong?
Today’s must-read piece is a behind-the-scenes look by Michelle Cottle at the fall of Sen. Hillary Clinton’s presidential aspirations.

“Endings are rarely as joyous as beginnings — and in the case of a long, wearing, and ultimately disappointing campaign, they can be downright brutal. But they also have the potential to be educational, for participants and gawkers alike. So it is that we asked (begged, really) a range of Hillarylanders for their up-close and personal lists of ‘What Went Wrong?’ Not everyone wanted to play. Many stubbornly pointed out that their candidate is not yet dead. But, on the condition of total anonymity, a fairly broad enough cross-section of her staff responded — more than a dozen members all told, from high-level advisors to grunt-level assistants, from money men to on-the-ground organizers.”


Are We Giving Saudi Arabia Nukes?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:37 am by HL

Are We Giving Saudi Arabia Nukes?
No no, not the bomb. Strictly a peaceful civil program, you understand, just like the Iranians say they’re developing.

No no, not the bomb. Strictly a peaceful civil program, you understand, just like the Iranians say they’re developing.

As Bush flew into Riyadh, the White House said the United States, the world’s largest energy consumer, had agreed to help protect the resources of the world’s top oil exporter and help it in developing peaceful nuclear energy.

“The United States and Saudi Arabia have agreed to cooperate in safeguarding the kingdom’s energy resources by protecting key infrastructure, enhancing Saudi border security, and meeting (its) expanding energy needs,” a White House statement said.

“The U.S. and Saudi Arabia will sign a memorandum of understanding in the area of peaceful civil nuclear energy cooperation.”

The announcement came as Bush ended a three-day trip to Israel where he vowed to oppose Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Tehran says its program is peaceful but Bush said it would be “unforgivable” if Iran were allowed to get the bomb.

So we’re giving Saudi Arabia nukes while still refusing to allow Iran nukes.

And for all that, Saudi Arabia isn’t even willing (though I question whether, at this point, they are able) to lower gas prices?

While Bush is likely to find common ground on Iran when he meets King Abdullah, the Saudi monarch is expected to rebuff for the second time this year Bush’s face-to-face call to get OPEC pumping more oil to world markets.

Wasn’t it just yesterday that Bush was decrying negotiations with evil dictators? Does giving them nuclear technology while getting nothing in exchange count as “appeasement”?


A Blogger Call With Hillary Clinton: It’s the Map Not the Math

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:36 am by HL

A Blogger Call With Hillary Clinton: It’s the Map Not the Math

Update: Taylor Marsh has posted the audio of the call here.

****

We had a great blogger call with a very hoarse Hillary Clinton today. It was just for bloggers so she could thank us for our support.

She is staying in the race. She is ahead in the popular vote by 50,000 votes, counting Florida and Michigan which must be counted. She intends to continue to lead in the popular vote when June 3 comes around and everyone has voted.

The number one message: It's the map not the math. In addition to the popular vote, the electoral map shows her with a cushion and Obama with a deficit. She has won 311 electoral votes to Obama's 217. While a few of her's like Texas and Oklahoma will be a challenge in November, many of his states will be: Alaska, Idaho, Utah, to name a few.

It's especially important to focus on this because it’s what superdelegates are supposed to be doing, exercising independent judgment to determine who would be the better candidate against John McCain in November.

She's in Oregon today, she'll be doing a televised town hall tonight that Obama was invited to participate in but declined. He won’t debate her or stand side by side with her to debate issues. That's a disservice to the people of Oregon.

More…

She also talked about the blogosphere, saying she deeply regrets the vitriol and mean spiritedness and insults that have been thrown around at bloggers for supporting her and at women in general, but this too shall pass. She said she’s imperviious to the insults and almost sees it as a perverse (reverse?)form of flattery.

Further reading:

Comments closed.


Speaking of Totemic Phrases

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:35 am by HL

Speaking of Totemic Phrases
I bet 95% of Americans couldn’t come up with even a sorta correct brief explanation of what Hamas is. Still it’s a word which is vaguely associated with scary brown people, so it’s bad. But Huggy Bear was for talking to them before he was against it.

McCain, meanwhile, is guilty of hypocrisy. I am a supporter of Hillary Clinton and believe that she was right to say, about McCain’s statement on Hamas, “I don’t think that anybody should take that seriously.” Unfortunately, the Republicans know that some people will. That’s why they say such things.

But given his own position on Hamas, McCain is the last politician who should be attacking Obama. Two years ago, just after Hamas won the Palestinian parliamentary elections, I interviewed McCain for the British network Sky News’s “World News Tonight” program. Here is the crucial part of our exchange:

I asked: “Do you think that American diplomats should be operating the way they have in the past, working with the Palestinian government if Hamas is now in charge?”

McCain answered: “They’re the government; sooner or later we are going to have to deal with them, one way or another, and I understand why this administration and previous administrations had such antipathy towards Hamas because of their dedication to violence and the things that they not only espouse but practice, so . . . but it’s a new reality in the Middle East. I think the lesson is people want security and a decent life and decent future, that they want democracy. Fatah was not giving them that.”


Sex And The American Mom: 1 In 3 Report Having Affairs on the Side

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:34 am by HL

Sex And The American Mom: 1 In 3 Report Having Affairs on the Side
A survey reveals that a majority of married moms are not sexually satisfied in their marriages. Many are making up for it on the side.


Obama: I’ll Debate McCain On Foreign Policy “Anywhere, Anytime”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:33 am by HL

Obama: I’ll Debate McCain On Foreign Policy “Anywhere, Anytime”
Obama, at a Q-and-A with reporters after his speech, continued to keep the story of his standoff with McCain and Bush going at full throttle: “If John McCain wants to meet me anywhere, anytime to have a debate about our…


One TPM Reader goes rational on President Bush

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:32 am by HL


One TPM Reader goes rational on President Bush … When President Bush decries “the false comfort of appeasement,” and John McCain raises the spectre of Neville Chamberlain, they’re deliberately advancing a fallacious line of argument. Appeasement – the acceptance of…


Iraqi police beat news photographer

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:31 am by HL

Iraqi police beat news photographer
BAGHDAD, Iraq — An Iraqi photographer working for Reuters was hospitalized Friday after police beat him at the scene of a bombing, officials told CNN. The unnamed still photographer was in stable condition after five Iraqi policemen struck him on the head with AK-47 rifles, an Iraqi Interior Ministry official said…


After Endorsing Bush?s Comments, McCain Camp Claims ?We Never Used The Term Appeasement?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:30 am by HL

After Endorsing Bush?s Comments, McCain Camp Claims ?We Never Used The Term Appeasement?
While speaking to the Israeli Knesset yesterday, President Bush compared those who advocate speaking directly to our enemies to Nazi appeasers, a comment interpreted as a hit at Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL). Speaking on MSNBC this afternoon, Nancy Pfotenhauer, a policy adviser to Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), stood by Bush’s comparison even as she tried […]

While speaking to the Israeli Knesset yesterday, President Bush compared those who advocate speaking directly to our enemies to Nazi appeasers, a comment interpreted as a hit at Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL). Speaking on MSNBC this afternoon, Nancy Pfotenhauer, a policy adviser to Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), stood by Bush’s comparison even as she tried to claim that McCain had never used the word appeasement:

PFOTENHAUER: Senator McCain responded directly himself and said he took the president at his word, that those comments were not directed toward Senator Obama. […]

SHUSTER: Nancy, does the McCain campaign believe that talking to our enemies is the same as appeasing them?

PFOTENHAUER: We have never used the term appeasement and you know that.

SHUSTER: But the president did. […]

PFOTENHAUER: We have specifically not used the term appeasement.

Watch it:

Pfotenhauer needs to get her facts straight. First, McCain himself specifically used the word “appeasers” yesterday, insisting “the president is exactly right“:

Yes, there have been appeasers in the past, and the president is exactly right, and one of them is Neville Chamberlain. I believe that it’s not an accident that our hostages came home from Iran when President Reagan was president of the United States. He didn’t sit down in a negotiation with the religious extremists in Iran, he made it very clear that those hostages were coming home.

What’s more, it’s unclear what Pfotenhauer was referring to when she said the McCain campaign “took the president at his words,” considering Bush never said that his comments were not directed toward Obama. In fact, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino confirmed that the comments did “include” him. CNN’s Ed Henry reported yesterday, “White House aides are acknowledging that this was a reference to the fact that Sen. Obama and other Democrats” support meeting with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad.


Obama Strikes Back at Bush On Diplomacy

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on May 17th, 2008 4:29 am by HL

Obama Strikes Back at Bush On Diplomacy
WATERTOWN, S.D., May 16 — Sen. Barack Obama pushed back Friday against President Bush’s implicit criticism of his approach to foreign policy, condemning his administration for not capturing Osama bin Laden and blaming its Iraq war policy for strengthening and emboldening Iran.