Bill joins Hillary under the bus & Mark Warner on “Virginia’s Military Might”

In a lengthy piece in the NY Times Matt Bai today shoved Bill Clinton toward the front axle of Bus Obama. According to Bai, the Obama Campaign altered their strategy for taking on Mitt Romney.

You may recall that last spring, just after Mr. Romney locked up the Republican nomination, Mr. Obama’s team abruptly switched its strategy for how to define him. Up to then, the White House had been portraying Mr. Romney…..as inauthentic and inconstant, a soulless climber who would say anything to get the job.

But it was Mr. Clinton who forcefully argued to Mr. Obama’s aides that the campaign had it wrong. The best way to go after Mr. Romney, the former president said, was to publicly grant that he was the “severe conservative” he claimed to be, and then hang that unpopular ideology around his neck.

After a tortuous explanation of why Clinton was wrong, Bai concludes:

Mr. Obama has chosen his path, and he now has only a few weeks to convince a lot of independents in states like Ohio and Virginia that Mr. Romney really is some raging conservative, rather than the more malleable, somewhat awkward fellow he is impersonating on TV. It’s an approach that has both pluses and minuses for Mr. Obama, much like the former president whose influence pervades his campaign.

Is there is room under that bus for two Clintons at one time? Should Chelsea be alarmed?

In my inbox this morning was a letter from Virginia Senator Mark Warner. Its subject line jumped off the screen: Virginia’s Military Might. 

I wanted to pass along some encouraging news about the future of Virginia’s economy and our longstanding partnerships with the United States military.

U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta visited Virginia last week to speak with more than 500 business and community leaders at an event hosted by the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce. As The Virginian Pilot reported, the Pentagon chief explicitly stated that our shipyards and defense contractors will continue to be key players in our nation’s defense efforts.

Acknowledging that the Pentagon must adjust and adapt now that we’re winding down two wars conducted over the past decade, Panetta said “we will continue to invest in the unique capabilities and military and industrial facilities like those in Hampton Roads. The facilities help us protect the strongest military in the world.”


I urge you to read the full text of the Secretary’s remarks here.

Panetta – a former congressman, federal budget director, White House chief of staff, and CIA director – expressed understandable frustration at the threat of automatic, across-the-board budget cuts – the so-called sequester – that those of us in Congress enacted and must work to prevent before the end of the year.

As a Virginian, I appreciated Secretary Panetta’s acknowledgement of our Commonwealth’s strong support over many years for our military men and women. “Simply put, [Virginia] houses perhaps the greatest concentration of military might in the world. And the support offered by [Virginia] to its service members, its veterans, to their families, is an incredibly important part of what makes this area the strategic national asset that it is,” the Secretary said.

Finally, as I continue to work across the aisle on responsible solutions to our nation’s challenges with deficits and debt and the looming fiscal cliff, I really appreciated this final thought provided by Secretary Panetta:

“Whatever I do in my job, whatever we do on national debt, if we don’t have elected leaders who are willing to come together and solve the problems facing this country, our national security is in jeopardy,” the Secretary said.

I could not agree more, and that is why I will continue my bipartisan efforts to craft a responsible, balanced plan to reduce our debt by cutting spending, generating appropriate revenues, and reforming our entitlement programs so they are sustainable.


Do you think that Barack Obama’s clever zinger that compared the modern Navy to horses and bayonets is maybe starting to stink a bit? Do you suppose that maybe Senator Warner’s kind email this morning was meant to distract and reassure Virginians who work in and around defense facilities?

Read this part again:

Panetta….expressed understandable frustration at the threat of automatic, across-the-board budget cuts – the so-called sequester – that those of us in Congress enacted and must work to prevent before the end of the year.

“That those of us in Congress enacted and must work to prevent before the end of the year”. With that line Senator Warner jumped under the bus and took one for the team. President Barack Obama is blameless. Congress did it.  Not only did Congress do it but now they must undo it.

The underside of Bus Obama is getting crowded.

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