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Archive for September 16th, 2010

Early Morning Swim: Chris Matthews Interviews Chris Coons (D-DE)

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:51 am by HL

Early Morning Swim: Chris Matthews Interviews Chris Coons (D-DE)
Thanks for the Senate seate, Teabaggers!

Thanks for the Senate seate, Teabaggers!

The latest Public Policy Polling (D) results suggest that Christine O’Donnell faces an uphill battle in her race for Vice President Joe Biden’s old Senate seat in Delaware. In a poll of 958 likely Delaware voters conducted this weekend, PPP found that Democrat Chris Coons leads O’Donnell 50 percent to 34 percent. […]

The principle challenge O’Donnell faces is convincing Delaware voters that she is qualified to be a U.S. senator. According to the PPP survey, 49 percent of the electorate doesn’t believe that O’Donnell is fit to hold public office. In head-to-head matchups, Castle would have garnered 30 percent of Democrats, 64 percent of Republicans, and 45 percent of Independents, compared to 54/16/27 for Coons. We see very different numbers for the O’Donnell/Coons race, with O’Donnell getting just 13 percent of Democrats and 36 percent of Independents, with 61 percent of Republicans backing her. Even if she manages to get Republicans to come home, she’ll still trail Coons (who will presumably get a number of undecided Independents and Demcorats).

And the Palinization of the GOP continues.

Late Late Night FDL: Going Down Slow
Honeydripper All Star BandGoing Down Slow.

Honeydripper All Star BandGoing Down Slow.

What’s on your mind?

Will Big Tobacco’s Former Bag-Man Really Be the Next Speaker?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:50 am by HL

Will Big Tobacco’s Former Bag-Man Really Be the Next Speaker?
There is nothing fresh or surprising about Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the would-be speaker, a figure so closely associated with corporate special interests that he looks, sounds and behaves exactly like a lobbyist.

There is nothing fresh or surprising about Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the would-be speaker, a figure so closely associated with corporate special interests that he looks, sounds and behaves exactly like a lobbyist.

Related Entries

John R. Coats: What’s Real About the Rapture?

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:49 am by HL

John R. Coats: What’s Real About the Rapture?
Around 1830 John Nelson Darby, having selected scripture passages from Daniel, Revelation, 1 and 2 Thessalonians and elsewhere, pasted them together, called them a whole, and invented the Rapture, a word not found in the Bible.

Rep. Mike Castle: The ‘Lies’ Of Hannity And Limbaugh Were ‘Significant’ Reasons I Lost To Christine O’Donnell (VIDEO)
In an interview with Fox News Wednesday, Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) said that a “significant” reason for his Senate primary loss to Christine O’Donnell was…

FHA: Banks Should Share Fannie, Freddie Bailout Costs
WASHINGTON — The nation’s largest banks have an obligation to pay some of the cost for bailing out mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac…

Steven Hill: Don’t cut Social Security, DOUBLE it
With Congressional elections around the corner, Social Security has become part of the anti-big government mantra of Tea Party candidates. So far, the “debate” over…

Fox & Friends is launching pad for GOP general election campaigns

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:48 am by HL

Fox & Friends is launching pad for GOP general election campaigns

Following their primary victories, Republican candidates have routinely turned to Fox & Friends as their favored venue to mark the launch of their general election campaigns. Through softball interviews, Fox & Friends, in turn, provides them an open platform to promote their campaigns.

Fox & Friends routinely hosts GOP candidates to launch their general election campaigns

Fox & Friends hosts Paladino after his primary victory to tout tea party principles. On September 15, Fox & Friends hosted Carl Paladino, who secured the Republican nomination for governor in New York the night before. Co-host Brian Kilmeade told Paladino that “one of the reasons you decided to get in is because almost no one can argue, New York politics is an absolute travesty. It’s a circus, and you’re trying to straighten it out.” Co-host Steve Doocy added: “A lot of people say that they voted for you because the GOP in New York State has lurched to the left.” Doocy also asked Paladino, “What’s your message to people who say that tea party candidates in some cases cannot beat the Democrats?” After Paladino touted what he considered to be tea party principles, co-host Gretchen Carlson said, “Well, Mr. Paladino, it’s not only Albany, New York,” where the tea party movement is taking hold, “it’s happening all over the country.”

Fox & Friends hosts O’Donnell to attack “so-called political experts” who predicted her primary loss. Later on the September 15 broadcast, Fox & Friends hosted Delaware Republican Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, a tea party-backed candidate who scored an upset victory against Rep. Mike Castle. O’Donnell attacked “so-called political experts” who predicted that she would lose to Castle “because their pride had just been hurt and their credibility just took a severe shot.” O’Donnell again referred to Castle as an “Obama Republican” and predicted she would win in the general election because Delaware had a lot of “Reagan Democrats” who supported her. Doocy asked her, “How much of the win do you attribute to the support from the tea party people, who were certainly motivated, or how much was just people are motivated because they want to throw the bums out, the anti-incumbency thing?” During the interview, Carlson gave her the “good news” that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell had decided that “he is not backing away from supporting you as the winner in Delaware.” Carlson had earlier lambasted the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s “suicide” decision to not fund O’Donnell’s race.

Doocy, Perino open Fiorina interview by lobbing softballs such as, “How did you do it?” and, “How much are you looking forward to taking on Barbara Boxer?” Republican Senate candidate Carly Fiorina (CA) appeared on the program June 9, after winning the California Republican Senate primary. Doocy and guest host Dana Perino began the interview by asking her, “How did you do it?” and, “How much are you looking forward to taking on Barbara Boxer come this November?” They also asked her whether she was going to “pool her resources” with California Republican gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman because Democrats are “going to come at you with all the firepower that they’ve got” and whether she’s “willing to spend a bunch more” on the campaign. At one point, Kilmeade asked her how she would “answer” accusations from Boxer about her time at Hewlett-Packard.

Fox & Friends goes easy on Angle, suggesting it’s “misinformation” and “not true” that Angle wants to “get rid of Social Security.” On the June 14 edition of Fox & Friends, Doocy, Carlson, and Kilmeade hosted Angle, the Republican nominee in the Nevada Senate race, for an “exclusive” interview. Carlson asked her about how “it must be such a whirlwind experience for you, somebody who really has not been in politics before.” Kilmeade asked her about what “message” Nevadans should “be taking by … giving you the nomination,” and Doocy asked her: “[A] lot of people in the mainstream media … are trying to marginalize the tea party. They shouldn’t, should they?” At the end of the interview, Doocy falsely suggested that it is “misinformation” and “not true” that Angle wants to “get rid of Social Security,” when in fact, Angle’s campaign website advocated “transition[ing] out” Social Security. The interview was later harshly criticized by Las Vegas’ Fox affiliate as “rife with inaccuracies, softball questions and poor research on the part of the producers and hosts.”

Doocy asks Haley about the “crazy allegations” made about her during the campaign and tells her she is “lucky” to have a Palin endorsement. Republican gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley (SC) also appeared on the program June 9, following her primary victory. During the interview, Doocy discussed “these crazy allegations out there that you have denied” and asked her why her opponents would “make that stuff up?” Perino stated that “the guys were quite desperate because they couldn’t win on the merits” and asked Haley what her “biggest challenges going into” the election will be. Later, Doocy stated that Haley is “lucky because Governor Sarah Palin, she selected just a handful of candidates to endorse … you were one of them.” He asked her, “Have you spoken to her since your win? If you did, what was the conversation like?”

Fox & Friends hosts Rubio following his primary victory to attack his opponents and to advise him on what “would be a really good political ad.” On the August 25 edition of Fox & Friends, Florida Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio appeared following his primary victory. The hosts allowed Rubio to bash his opponent, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, even helping him portray Crist as a flip-flopper. For instance, Kilmeade said to Rubio, “You’re not sure what Charlie Crist is going to do. For example, he came out and said I want to ban all offshore drilling. Next thing you know, he’s got a key Obama aide as one of his chief aides.” After Rubio said, “Here’s the bottom line. I am running against two supporters of the Obama agenda. If people like the direction Washington is taking America, they should vote for [Democratic candidate] Kendrick Meek or Charlie Crist. But if they want their next U.S. senator from Florida to be someone that will go to Washington, stand up to this agenda, and offer a clear alternative, I’m the only one running that’s going to do that,” Doocy replied, “That sounds like that would be a really good political ad.” In this case, Fox & Friends also hosted Meek earlier in the broadcast.

Fox & Friends hosts Daniel Webster (R-FL) while trashing his opponent, Rep. Alan Grayson, as a “bomb thrower” who “said some crazy things.” Also on the August 25 Fox & Friends, Doocy hosted Republican congressional nominee Daniel Webster and asked him, “Alan Grayson, your opponent in November, has said some crazy things. He’s a real bomb thrower in Congress. Is that going to help you out?” Doocy also said to Webster, “I’ll tell you what, this guy, Grayson, voted for the stimulus. That is wildly unpopular in many sectors.”

Fox & Friends is home to smears, inflammatory rhetoric, and rampant misinformation

Fox & Friends at forefront of pushing false smear that Obama attended a “madrassa.” On the January 19, 2007, editions of Fox & Friends First and Fox & Friends, Kilmeade, along with Doocy and Carlson, spent several segments advancing a false report that then-Sen. Barack Obama was raised a Muslim and attended a madrassa, or Islamic school, as a child in Indonesia. At one point, Doocy asked: “When people find out this stuff, they’re going to go, ‘Why didn’t anybody ever mention that that man right there was raised as — spent the first decade of his life raised by his Muslim father as a Muslim and was educated in a madrassa?’ ” Kilmeade responded, “Yeah, is that a problem?” He added: “Evidently, when he was a little kid, he went over to Indonesia and went to a madrassa. He — in his two best-selling books, he doesn’t really mention this in detail.”

Fox & Friends airs altered photos of NY Times reporters while calling them “attack dogs.” On the July 2, 2008, edition of Fox & Friends, Doocy and Kilmeade labeled New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and editor Steven Reddicliffe “attack dogs,” claiming that Steinberg’s June 28, 2008, article on the “ominous trend” in Fox News’ ratings was a “hit piece.” During the segment, however, Fox News featured photos of Steinberg and Reddicliffe that appeared to have been digitally altered — the journalists’ teeth had been yellowed, their facial features exaggerated, and portions of Reddicliffe’s hair moved further back on his head. Fox News gave no indication that the photos had been altered.

Kilmeade: Americans don’t have “pure genes” like Swedes because “we keep marrying other species and other ethnics.” On the July 8, 2009, edition of Fox & Friends, while discussing a study on the relationship between marriage an Alzheimer’s, Kilmeade opined that “we keep marrying other species and other ethnics and … the Swedes have pure genes, because they marry other Swedes. Because that’s the rule.” Kilmeade later apologized for his “inappropriate” comments.

Fox & Friends erased 2006 Hawaii earthquake to attack Obama. Responding to President Obama’s March 17 statement that Hawaii “went through an earthquake” and could benefit from a health care reform provision that would help Louisiana cope with Medicaid shortfalls resulting from Hurricane Katrina, Doocy asked, “What Hawaiian earthquake?” In fact, as Fox News reported at the time, President Bush declared a “major disaster” after Hawaii was hit by a magnitude 6.7 earthquake in October 2006.

Fox & Friendshosted convicted child abuser to blame teen pregnancy on teaching evolution in school. On the August 30 edition of Fox & Friends, guest host Juliet Huddy hosted Colorado Right to Life activist Bob Enyart to discuss the availability of birth control to students at a Colorado school. Enyart, who in 1999 was convicted of misdemeanor child abuse for beating his now-stepson, was cut off by Huddy after professing that the teaching of evolution was partially to blame for high teenage pregnancy rates.

Fox & Friends hosts Graham, who calls Muslims “enslaved by Islam” and claims with Christianity, “they don’t have to die in a car bomb.” On April 22  Fox & Friends hosted evangelist Rev. Franklin Graham, son of Rev. Billy Graham, to discuss reports that the Army was considering rescinding its invitation for Graham to appear at the Pentagon on the National Day of Prayer due to objections to his past description of Islam as a “wicked” and “evil” religion. During the segment, Graham preached that Muslims should convert to Christianity and said that they should know that “they don’t have to die in a car bomb, they don’t have to die in some kind of holy war to be accepted by God, but it’s through faith in Jesus Christ and Christ alone.” Graham also called Muslims “enslaved by Islam.” Later in the show, Fox News’ Peter Johnson Jr. defended Graham, offering many reasons why Graham’s past statements about Islam should be forgiven, including that “[a]fter 9-11, a lot of folks were making those statements.” Johnson concluded: “It doesn’t make it right, it doesn’t make it wrong. He is a human. He may have made a mistake, but do we condemn him now because he’s a Christian preacher?”

Kilmeade shows map of 9-11 victims’ body parts to attack Park51. On the September 10 edition of Fox & Friends, Kilmeade displayed a map showing where body parts belonging to 9-11 victims had been found in order to attack the Park51 Islamic cultural center. The map showed a red square where the center is planned to be built and dots where remains were found.

Doocy: Unlike “a lot of disasters” Nashville victims not “whining and complaining.” On the May 14 edition of Fox & Friends,  Doocy said of flooding in Nashville: “[E]ven though this is a national, and natural, disaster of biblical proportions, practically, you don’t hear any whining and complaining from those people. It’s not like they’re saying ‘hey will the federal government please bail us out?'” Occasional Fox News host Courtney Friel agreed that this was how Nashville was different from Hurricane Katrina. 

Kilmeade: Muslims “have to understand” being profiled because of “the war that was declared on us.” On the November 10, 2009, edition of Fox & Friends, Kilmeade told Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham: “You get a chance to talk to a lot of Islamic experts, Muslim experts, and people who understand the Quran, and I asked him one time, off camera, I said, ‘How do you feel about the extra scrutiny, clearly, you’re getting at the airports?’ And he said, ‘I’m all for it, because I want to get home to my family, too.’ And that’s really got to be the attitude. So, if you’re Islamic, or you’re Muslim and you’re in the military, you have to understand … and that’s just the fact right now in the war that was declared on us.”

Doocy: “Should those who don’t pay [taxes] be allowed to vote?” On the July 28 edition of Fox & Friends, Doocy repeated the false claim that 47 percent of people pay no taxes and asked, “Should those who don’t pay be allowed to vote?”

Death panels, rationing, other misinformation finds a home on Fox & Friends. Over the course of one week, Fox & Friends advanced a bonanza of health care reform misinformation, including the falsehood that the bill requires the elderly to go before a “death panel,” the falsehood that the House bill would force people into “government designed plan,” the claim that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called health care reform opponents “un-American,” the suggestion that a section of the bill that would provide Medicare reimbursement to doctors for end-of-life counseling would create “end-of-life consultants” other than doctors consulting with families, and the prediction that the bill would create a system of rationing that would result in the disappearance of medical procedures like dialysis for the elderly.

Adams Threatens 16 States With Lawsuits Over Voter Rolls

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:47 am by HL

Adams Threatens 16 States With Lawsuits Over Voter Rolls
J. Christian Adams, the former DOJ lawyer at the heart of the New Black Panthers case, has sent letter to 16 states warning them that they are breaking voter law by not removing dead and ineligible voters from their rolls.

Reid Promises Lady Gaga A Vote On DADT
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid today promised pop star Lady Gaga, via the Twitter machine, that he will hold a vote on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell next week.

Harry ReidLady GagaParty leaders of the United States SenateUnited States SenateTwitter

Famed Civil Rights Photographer Worked As FBI Informant
Ernest C. Withers, a famed photographer who chronicled the civil rights movement and was able to sit in on some of the most sensitive strategy meetings, also worked as an informant for the FBI.

Civil rights movementFederal Bureau of InvestigationMartin Luther KingUnited StatesEmmett Till

Wanker Magazine Features Christine O’Donnell

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:43 am by HL

Wanker Magazine Features Christine O’Donnell

Kasich Opens Up Big Lead for Ohio Governor

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:42 am by HL

Kasich Opens Up Big Lead for Ohio Governor
A new Quinnipiac poll in Ohio shows John Kasich (R) opening up a wide lead over Gov. Ted Strickland (D) among likely voters in the race for governor, 54% to 37%.

Notes pollster Peter Brown: “Independent voters often decide elections in Ohio and Kasich leads among the unaffiliated by 23 points. Not only that, but John Kasich does slightly better among Democrats than Strickland does among Republicans.”

Meanwhile, a new CNN/Time poll shows Kasich leading 51% to 44% and a new SurveyUSA poll has Kasich leading 52% to 40%.

Close Race for Minnesota Governor
A new SurveyUSA poll in Minnesota shows Mark Dayton (D) leading Tom Emmer (R) in the race for governor, 38% to 36%, with Tom Horner (I) trailing at 18%.

Dead Even in the Generic Congressional Ballot
A new Politico/GWU Battleground Poll finds Democrats and Republicans tied in the generic congressional race at 43% each — even though most of those surveyed think the GOP will take control of the House and Senate in the midterm elections.

“Better yet for Democrats, in several key regions with numerous House and Senate seats in play — namely, the Midwest and Northeast — they hold a 5-point advantage, suggesting the party’s congressional fortunes aren’t nearly as grim as the media coverage might suggest.”

More hope for Democrats in a New York Times/CBS News poll: While voters rate the performance of Democrats negatively, they view Republicans as even worse, “providing a potential opening for Democrats to make a last-ditch case for keeping their hold on power.”

Progressive Politics Gets a Boost in New York

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:41 am by HL

Progressive Politics Gets a Boost in New York
Progressives scored big victories in key races, congressional and statewide, in the primaries.

Progressives scored big victories in key races, congressional and statewide, in the primaries.

Are Republicans Dumb Enough to Try and Shut Down Government Again?
I am continuously amazed at the GOP’s ability to snatch defeat out of the jaws of potential victory. It is the gift that keeps giving.

I am continuously amazed at the GOP's ability to snatch defeat out of the jaws of potential victory. It is the gift that keeps giving.

12 of America’s Most Crooked Candidates on the Ballot in the 2010 Election
Here are some of the absolutely least deserving candidates for high office.

Here are some of the absolutely least deserving candidates for high office.

The Relationship Revolution: The Internet As a New Way of Life
The Internet may seem like a 21st-century nightmare version of the worst excesses of the marketplace. But it’s also creating new possibilities for connection and conversation.

The Internet may seem like a 21st-century nightmare version of the worst excesses of the marketplace. But it's also creating new possibilities for connection and conversation.

The Republican Threat to Shut Down the Federal Government

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:40 am by HL

The Republican Threat to Shut Down the Federal Government
Newt Gingrich is saying if Republicans win back control of Congress and reach a budget impasse with the President, they should shut down the government again. GOP pollster Dick Morris is echoing those sentiments, as is Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R….

Newt GingrichRepublicanDick MorrisUnited StatesPresident of the United States

Dear Pat Toomey, 2002 Called and Wants Its Campaign Back
In case there was any doubt that Republicans are campaigning on arguments that are impervious to the passage of time or even the facts, we have an ugly foreign policy snit today from the nominee for PA-Sen, Pat Toomey. Toomey…

Pat ToomeyRepublican PartyJoe SestakNorth KoreaBarack Obama

This morning it really hit me how strange it is to ask people whether they view Islam favorably or unfavorably. Popularity ratings for 1400-year old religious traditions? Really? As far as I know, Islam isn’t a proposition for the American…

IslamReligionReligion and SpiritualityUnited StatesInvitation to Islam

With Castle Defeat, Senate GOP Candidates In Lockstep Against Climate Action

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 16th, 2010 4:39 am by HL

With Castle Defeat, Senate GOP Candidates In Lockstep Against Climate Action

With the defeat of Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE) in Tuesday’s primary by Tea Party favorite Christine O’Donnell, the slate of Republicans vying for election to the U.S. Senate this November is unanimously opposed to comprehensive climate legislation. An earlier Wonk Room analysis of the 37 Senate races found that Castle was the lone supporter of climate action among a sea of global warming deniers and fossil-funded anti-government ideologues. In other Republican primaries on Tuesday:

– In Wisconsin, global warming denier Dave Westlake was defeated by global warming denier Ron Johnson.

– In New York, global warming deniers Bruce Blakeman and David Malpass were defeated by Joe DioGuardi, who says he believes in global warming but opposes climate legislation.

– In New York’s other senate race, global warming denier Gary Berntsen was defeated by global warming denier Jay Townsend.

– New Hampshire’s primary between six global warming deniers remains a tight battle between Kelly Ayotte and Ovide Lamontagne.

Christine O’Donnell — a signatory of the FreedomWorks Contract From America that “reject[s] cap & trade” — has not yet taken a public stand on whether the science of man-made climate change is a conspiracy, a position many of her Tea Party supporters hold.

ThinkFast: September 15, 2010

Delaware Primary

Realizing the “GOP nightmare,” Tea Party favorite Christine O’Donnell (DE) toppled Rep. Mike Castle in Delaware’s Republican Senate primary. In reacting to his stunning loss, Castle chose to call Democratic candidate Chris Coons over O’Donnell last night, and confirmed that he “will not be endorsing” her in the general election.

Buffalo multimillionaire and Tea Party candidate Carl P. Paladino defeated former Rep. Rick Lazio to win the Republican gubernatorial nomination in New York last night. The “volatile newcomer,” who forwarded racist and pornographic e-mails to friends, has lent a “potentially destabilizing blow to New York Republicans” who have “historically succeeded by choosing moderates.”

Former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte is leading the field for the GOP nomination for the state’s open U.S. Senate seat. At 3 a.m. with 85 percent of the votes counted, the race is currently too close to call, with Ayotte ahead of attorney Ovide Lamontagne by less than one percentage point.

Reshma Saujani, a 34-year old Indian-American challenger to longtime Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D), got crushed in her primary last night, losing by an 80-20 margin. A Wall Street veteran, Saujani’s campaign message was that “we need to extend a hand rather than a fist” to Wall Street.

President Reagan’s Solicitor General, Charles Fried, argues in a new book that President Bush broke the law by authorizing torture against suspected terrorists. “I think that (the Bush administration) broke the law and what they did was disgusting and terrible and degrading,” Fried told Reuters during an interview.

“Al Qaeda’s number two Ayman al-Zawahri released an audio recording Wednesday” attacking the Pakistani government for being too slow to respond to the country’s massive flooding. In the tape, the militant called upon Pakistanis to revolt against their government and the Pakistani “ruling class.”

Palestinian and Israeli leaders held face-to-face talks for more than two hours at a luxury seaside resort in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt yesterday but were unable to break the impasse over Jewish settlements in the West Bank. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opposes extending the settlement moratorium while Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas threatened to walk out if it is allowed to expire.

“Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday he will add the DREAM Act,” an immigration measure pushed by activists for years, to the upcoming defense authorization bill. The decision comes as many immigration activists are demoralized by Congress’s failure to take up comprehensive immigration reform.

And finally: Speaking at a fundraiser on behalf of Minnesota Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Dayton, former President Bill Clinton said that the Republican Party is heeding “ideology over evidence” and embracing such extreme voices that they even make President George W. Bush “look like a liberal.”

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