Posts Tagged ‘cap

20
May
11

‘political whiplash’

Steve Benen: Jon Huntsman is no doubt aware of his predicament. He’s running for president, as a Republican, despite having been a member of the Obama administration. He also has to impress a far-right GOP base, despite taking center-left positions on a range of issues – climate, gays, immigration, economic stimulus, health care, the TARP bank bailout – important to his party.

What’s his solution? In effect, Huntsman has two choices. He can (a) run as a moderate statesman, hope centrist Republicans still exist, and watch the rest of the GOP field to knock each other out competing for the same right-wing votes; or (b) Huntsman can abandon his moderation and scurry to the right just as fast as he can.

As of this morning, Huntsman appears to prefer the latter.

In an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on “Good Morning America,” the former U.S. ambassador to China maintained a level-headed tone, but nevertheless moved sharply to the right on a range of domestic issues.

(See the breakdown of the issues in Benen’s post)

….To his credit, Huntsman was less willing to flip on civil unions and immigration, but on everything else, Huntsman was moving to the right so quickly, I’m surprised it didn’t cause whiplash.

For that matter, his willingness to explicitly endorse the Ryan agenda – including Medicare privatization – would prove to be wildly problematic in the general election, should he get that far.

Full  post here

19
May
11

‘which huntsman will we actually see?’

Richard Swett (Concord Monitor): Today Jon Huntsman makes his New Hampshire debut as a potential presidential candidate. As someone who served under both a Democratic and a Republican president abroad, I applaud him for setting his Republican Party affiliation aside for two years to serve President Obama in China.

…But I wonder which Huntsman will be coming to the Granite State this week. Already he has been flip-flopping, like all the Republican candidates, pandering to the most extreme views of the Republican base. When these Republican candidates begin their presidential runs, it seems like all the pragmatic and commonsense policymaking they once listed as accomplishments becomes a record from which they try to distance themselves.

….Will the Huntsman who told the Obama administration that he appreciated what the president was trying to do on health care be the one coming to Manchester this weekend? Or will it be a Romney-lite Huntsman who attempts to distance himself from the president’s groundbreaking reforms that will ensure millions of Americans have access to quality affordable health care?

Will the Huntsman who supports a larger stimulus package come to Windham? Huntsman told Politico that the stimulus “probably wasn’t large enough,” and accepted more than $1.6 billion in stimulus money as governor of Utah. Is that what he’ll tell the Windham Republican Town Committee this week?

Will the Huntsman who supports civil unions and gay rights come to Franklin … he may just be the latest candidate in a presidential primary where all the competitors are moving to the right – as quickly as possible. If Huntsman follows this well-trodden path, it will be nothing new and nothing as fresh as the Washington pundits suggest his candidacy to be.

Full article here

17
May
11

flip-flop

Steve Benen: In the surest sign yet that Jon Huntsman, President Obama’s former ambassador to China, is running for president, the Republican has given up his support for cap-and-trade. He joins Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty, who did the same thing before launching their own national bids.

But Taegan Goddard flags an interesting quote from Huntsman on the issue, which speaks to a larger concern. When Time magazine asked, “You also believe in climate change, right?” Huntsman replied:

“I’m not a meteorologist. All I know is 90 percent of the scientists say climate change is occurring. If 90 percent of the oncological community said something was causing cancer we’d listen to them.”

…. Reminded how easy it is to always put environmental crises on the back burner behind other priorities, Huntsman added that addressing climate change would put “additional burdens on the pillars of growth,” which is “counter-productive.”

This is, in general, the worst of all possible positions. Much of the right believes climate change is a “hoax” and an elaborate conspiracy cooked up by communists to destroy America’s way of life. These deniers have a simple solution to the problem: ignore it and pretend there is no problem. Much of the left takes the evidence seriously, is eager to address the crisis, and has a variety of possible solutions to the problem, including but not limited to cap-and-trade plans.

Huntsman apparently wants to split the difference — he accepts the evidence and believes the problem is real; Huntsman just doesn’t want to do anything about it.

…he isn’t doing himself any favors by trying to thread this needle. The right will be unimpressed that he believes the science, and the left will be unimpressed that he prefers to ignore the problem for the indefinite future.

Full post here

21
Apr
11

oh baby (updated: say hello to nate’s dad in the comments)

President Obama greets a young baby upon his arrival at San Francisco International Airport, April 20. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

14
Apr
11

feeling bullish?

President Obama wears a Chicago Bulls cap after speaking at a DNC fundraiser April 14, at the Navy Pier

21
Jan
11

thanks, but no thanks

President Obama jokes during an appearance in Schenectady, N.Y. that he had the Secret Service confiscate a Jets hat Gov. Andrew Cuomo tried to give him. The president is a fan of his hometown Chicago Bears and said he’ll go to the Super Bowl if they advance Sunday.




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