72 Days until Election Day

August 24, 2008

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

"I think he can be ready but right now, I don’t believe he is. The presidency is not something that lends itself to on-the-job training."

"I would be honored to run with or against John McCain, because I think the country would be better off."

Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Obama’s Vice Presidential nominee

MORNING UPDATE:

MICHIGAN REPUBLICANS…nominated an impressive slate of candidates for Supreme Court, University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Wayne State University and State Board of Education.  See the list of our slate below.

THANK YOU…to the thousands of Republican activists who drove in from around the state to participate at our convention.  Thousands of McCain signs and bumper stickers made it out the door as excited activists went back to every corner of the state to support our ticket across the board.  Thanks again for all you do!

OBAMA-BIDEN… Barack Obama made his pick for a Vice Presidential candidate yesterday, Senator Joe Biden of Delaware.  And he has a lot in common with Senator McCain and the person he is going to tap to run with him: they all agree that Barack Obama is not ready to be President.

MY STATEMENT ON THE OBAMA-BIDEN TICKET…"I agree with Senator Biden that ‘the country would be better off’ with Senator John McCain as president. No one has been a more outspoken critic of Senator Obama’s lack of experience and judgment than Senator Biden. The team of Obama-Biden couldn’t be worse for Michigan’s struggling economy, as both support unrealistic government regulations that would bankrupt Michigan’s home-bred auto manufacturers."

BIDEN ON BARACK OBAMA…in his own words, Joe Biden makes the case against Barack Obama.  He raises the question of experience…I think Joe Biden, in his own words, has made the best case he can of why we can’t afford to take the risk of voting for Obama.  See Biden in his own words here.

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FOR THE LATEST NEWS, COMMENTARY & INFORMATION:

Check…out…our…online Articles of Interest………News…you…can…use………

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THE REST OF THE STORY:

MICHIGAN REPUBLICAN SLATE…of candidates…

State Supreme Court:

Clifford Taylor 

University of Michigan Regents:

Susan Brown

John LaFond

Michigan State University Trustee:

George Scott Romney

Lisa Bouchard

Wayne State University Governor:

Danialle Karmanos

Torion Bridges

State Board of Education:

Scott Jenkins

Richard Zeile

WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE OBAMA-BIDEN TICKET:

Barack Obama has selected a running mate who doesn’t believe he is ready to be President.

It’s clear that Barack Obama is nervous about this election, because he is compensating in an area of weakness where even his running-mate has criticized him.

Judging by some of Joe Biden’s past comments, it is unclear whether Barack Obama will be able to control his running-mate.

Joe Biden has been the leading critic of Barack Obama’s foreign policy.

Joe Biden criticized Barack Obama for trying to legislate failure and voting to cut off support for our military men and women in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Joe Biden attacked Barack Obama for being absent from the Iraq debate.

Joe Biden said that unlike Barack Obama, he would "absolutely positively" not unconditionally meet with leaders like Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or other leaders of state sponsors of terror.

Barack Obama called the Iraq War "the biggest foreign policy disaster in our generation," but Joe Biden voted for the Iraq War resolution. Biden said that "we have no choice but to eliminate the threat" from Iraq.

Joe Biden has voiced more support for John McCain’s foreign policy than he has Barack Obama’s. Joe Biden praised John McCain’s foreign policy leadership and John McCain’s early call for sending more troops to Iraq. Joe Biden even said he would be honored to run with John McCain on a presidential ticket.

Barack Obama decries Washington insiders and detests lobbyists, but Joe Biden is the model Washington insider with numerous connections to lobbyists.

Barack Obama and Joe Biden say they will only tax the "rich," but in the United States Senate, both voted for the largest tax increases in American history and voted to tax those making just $42,000 a year.

Both Joe Biden and Barack Obama say they want energy independence, but they oppose new offshore drilling and nuclear power. Both support increasing taxes on oil that will only lead to higher gas prices.

 

TODAY’S TOP STORIES

The following stories and more are available at my Articles of Interest online.

 

McCain manager says it’s ‘something I was meant to do’

BY KATHLEEN GRAYAugust 24, 2008

Even though she was working for former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s presidential campaigns in those bitter cold months of January, Jennifer Hallowell could feel the momentum shifting.

Mike Huckabee had won the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses, but there was a perceptible swing when the presidential race moved to New Hampshire.

"You could really feel the momentum building," Hallowell said as she sat at a makeshift desk at McCain’s Michigan’s headquarters in Farmington Hills. John McCain "really got back to his roots and style with those town hall meetings all over the state."

 

Life as a state campaign director means all politics, all the time

BY KATHLEEN GRAYAugust 24, 2008

They’ll spend the next 72 days getting little or no sleep as they herd volunteers, manage offices across the state, register voters and make sure their guy is the one who gets to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. in January.

Running the campaigns of a major party candidate is no easy feat. Just ask Donnie Fowler, who ran John Kerry’s presidential campaign in Michigan in 2004.

"Other than New York, Michigan is the most difficult state to do politics in the country," he said. "There are all those tensions in the state: Detroit versus the suburbs, versus the rest of the state. Then you’ve got the Teamsters versus the UAW and all the big political personalities in Michigan. The job is definitely a combination of diplomat and soldier."

 

Analysis: Text of Court Ruling in RMGN decision Extremely Well-Written.

Fri Aug 22, 2008 at 09:32:54 AM EDT Here’s a link to the actual order in the Reform Michigan Government Now! petition ruling by the Court of Appeals and here’s the opinion giving the analysis.

My initial review is, despite major concerns over whether the definition of "general revision" might be used in the future to squeeze out legitimate more-focused "amendments" (the case hinges on that distinction, which is proper under the doctrine of "mutual exclusion"), is that the opinion is extremely well written. The outcome is certainly correct (not because I prefer the outcome, but because I see multiple legal flaws in the proposed revision), nonetheless, I think a simpler and easier way to reach the conclusion the court reached would have been to find that the proposal contained a "fatal flaw", namely a misnumbering issue.  Given the organizers CHOSE to avoid pre-review for such typographicals by the Board of Canvassers in favor of the more stealthy approach, this should have been sufficient to hold them accountable under the doctrine the case cited early on here: 

Forum: Stem cell debate is pretty clear

By PAT KLEINRICHERT

The discussion of embryonic stem cell experimentation continues to generate a lot of heat while spreading far too little light. It bears repeating that adult, not embryonic, stem cell research is yielding amazing results. There are currently at least 73 diseases being treated as a result of adult stem cell research. This list includes cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, corneal regeneration, Parkinson’s disease and spinal cord injuries, to name but a few.

A recent editorial claimed that not doing "life-changing research" is a "real sin" committed by those opposed to ESCR. In case you are unclear about how terrible a group these people are, the editorial was clear: it is the "religious right" who will not "put the life of a quadriplegic over the fate of an abandoned embryo headed for a landfill."

 

EDITORIAL: Blue-state deficits

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Despite national political trends that should bode well for Democrats, these are not happy days for a pair of local Democratic Party "stars": Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Gov. Tim Kaine of Virginia. The two regional leaders, activist liberals who aren’t terribly shy about spending other people’s money, find themselves in the very uncomfortable position of making the political rounds telling their constituents about the need for belt-tightening. At least in the short term, they are taking a political drubbings as a result of 1) the poor national economy, which is depressing state tax revenues; and 2) their own irresponsible spending plans and overpromising.

Maryland is a one-party Democratic state. In the wake of Mr. O’Malley’s victory over incumbent Republican Robert Ehrlich two years ago, its political landscape more closely resembles that of Massachusetts than Virginia or any of its Southern neighbors. But across the Potomac River, Virginia has been trending in the Democrats’ direction as well. Just five years ago, Republicans dominated the Old Dominion, controlling every statewide office but the governorship. The one Democrat who had been elected statewide was lame-duck Gov. Mark Warner, who was constitutionally limited to only one term. Mr. Kaine, then- lieutenant governor of the state, seemed to operate completely behind the scenes, overshadowed by Republican Attorney General Jerry Kilgore, an activist conservative who became the Republican gubernatorial nominee in 2005.

 

A Courteous Call and a Quick Strike From McCain

By ELISABETH BUMILLER

SEDONA, Ariz. – Senator John McCain publicly reacted Saturday to the news that his good friend, Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., would be on the Democratic ticket with his now daily vacation ritual: going for a morning coffee run with his six-car motorcade to Starbucks and saying not a word.

But by the time he returned to his Hidden Valley Ranch compound, Mr. McCain had placed a call to Mr. Biden and congratulated him, midmorning Arizona time, from a perch on his deck. A McCain adviser characterized the call as "courteous."

Mr. McCain’s campaign aides showed no such politesse. Within minutes of the small-hours-of-Saturday-morning confirmation that Mr. Biden would be Senator Barack Obama’s running mate, the campaign shot out an e-mail message (at 1:50 a.m. Eastern time) that pointed out that Mr. Biden, an also-ran in the 2008 primaries, had termed Mr. Obama not ready to be president.

Barack Obama opts for ‘bare-knuckle fighter’ Joe Biden

Sarah Baxter in Washington

The race for the White House entered a new, decisive phase yesterday as Barack Obama introduced Senator Joe Biden of Delaware, a seasoned Washington veteran, as his running mate, describing him as ready to "step in and be president".

In the same historic setting at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois, where he put on the mantle of President Abraham Lincoln to launch his campaign last year, Obama described Biden as a "statesman with sound judgment who doesn’t have to hide behind bluster to keep America strong".

In a declaration of war, Republicans swiftly moved to kick Biden by pointing to his criticisms of Obama, their disagreements over the Iraq war and his reputation for verbosity.

 

Biden, Obama at odds over lobbyist donations

Jennifer Haberkorn and Jerry SeperSaturday, August 23, 2008

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama has made a pledge not to accept money from lobbyists, but his running mate – Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. – has collected over $200,000 from registered lobbyists in this year alone, according to a search of Senate lobbying records.

Mr. Biden’s unsuccessful 2008 presidential campaign and his still-pending race to be re-elected to the U.S. Senate in Delaware, according to the records, collected another $86,000 from lobbyists this year. The senator’s political action committee, Unite Our States, also received $120,500 from lobbyists this year, the records show.

 

Infidelity thins convention ranksCulture of seduction, scandals a potential pall over DNC

Jennifer Harper (Contact)Sunday, August 24, 2008

Call girls, little white lies, big fat fibs, wavering loyalties, wincing spouses, unfortunate remarks, questionable use of campaign funds and, yes, one possible love child.

A newly realized culture of seduction has cast a potential pall over the Democratic convention this week and diminished the role of certain party luminaries and up-and-comers who could have had starring roles at the podium.

Their passions clouded their reputations, at least temporarily, and it happened only two years after Democrats captured control of Congress from a scandal-scarred GOP it blasted for promoting a "culture of corruption" on Capitol Hill.

BINLEY: Ahmadinejad foes need a shield

Brian BinleySunday, August 24, 2008

America’s Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno will take over the top brass job in Iraq next month while Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards Quds Force continues to train Shi’ite militias to kill Iraqis and Coalition troops.

As Iranian-sponsored violence continues, there remains a powerful force in Iraq with far greater local knowledge than the U.S. military and anti-fundamentalist Islamic roots that has thus far acted as the principal bulwark to complete Iranian domination of Iraq’s political landscape.

The People’s Mujaheedin of Iran (PMOI), based in Camp Ashraf in Iraq’s Diyala Province for more than two decades, is the main democratic opposition movement to the ayatollahs’ regime in Tehran.

 

Russia rolls into Georgia, rolls back the clock

The Associated Press

MOSCOW (AP) — This spring, Russian tanks and missiles rolled across the cobblestones of Red Square as soldiers in olive green uniforms goose-stepped and a military band played the revived Soviet anthem. It was the first full-scale military display at the annual Victory Day parade in almost two decades.

On Aug. 8, the tanks rolled again, but this time it wasn’t just a parade. As hundreds of Russian armored vehicles rumbled toward the cavernous Roki tunnel into Georgia, the show ended and the shooting started.

The move stunned many in the U.S. and Europe. But it was the result, at least in part, of factors the West has never really understood: Russia’s wounded pride over its loss of the Soviet empire, its fear of NATO expansion along its borders and its anger over being treated as a backwater in Europe rather than a global power.