Posts Tagged ‘Kornacki

06
Dec
11

rise and shine

President Barack Obama participates in a college affordability roundtable with college presidents in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Dec. 5, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

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9:35 The President departs the White House

12:25 Arrives Kansas City

1:55 Delivers remarks on the economy

4:25 Departs Kansas City en route to Andrews

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AP: President Barack Obama is channeling President Theodore Roosevelt, embracing a mantle of economic fairness for the nation’s middle class Tuesday that draws parallels to the progressive reformer’s calls for a “square deal” for regular Americans more than a century ago.

Obama intends to use a speech in small town Osawatomie, Kan. – where Roosevelt delivered his “New Nationalism” address in 1910 – to lay out economic themes of giving middle-class workers a fair shake and greater financial security, concepts the president will probably return to repeatedly during the 2012 campaign.

…. The president will be speaking at a high school about 50 miles southwest of Kansas City, not far from the presidential electoral prize of Missouri, which Obama narrowly lost to Republican John McCain in 2008.

More here

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Thanks PoliticalJunkessa

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Spike Dolomite Ward (LA Times): ….. I want to apologize to President Obama. But first, some background. I found out three weeks ago I have cancer. I’m 49 years old, have been married for almost 20 years and have two kids…. We’re good people, and we work hard. But we haven’t been able to afford health insurance for more than two years….

…. Fortunately for me, I’ve been saved by the federal government’s Pre-existing Condition Insurance Plan, something I had never heard of before needing it. It’s part of President Obama’s healthcare plan, one of the things that has already kicked in, and it guarantees access to insurance for U.S. citizens with preexisting conditions who have been uninsured for at least six months …. for me it’s been a lifesaver – perhaps literally.

….. Which brings me to my apology. I was pretty mad at Obama before I learned about this new insurance plan. I had changed my registration from Democrat to Independent, and I had blacked out the top of the “h” on my Obama bumper sticker, so that it read, “Got nope” instead of “got hope.” I felt like he had let down the struggling middle class. My son and I had campaigned for him, but since he took office, we felt he had let us down.

So this is my public apology. I’m sorry I didn’t do enough of my own research to find out what promises the president has made good on. I’m sorry I didn’t realize that he really has stood up for me and my family, and for so many others like us. I’m getting a new bumper sticker to cover the one that says “Got nope.” It will say “ObamaCares.”

Full article here

Thanks BWD and Donna Dem

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USA Today: More than 2.65 million Medicare recipients have saved more than $1.5 billion on their prescriptions this year, a $569-per-person average, while premiums have remained stable, the government plans to announce today.

That’s because of the provision of the health care law that put a 50% discount on prescription drugs in the “doughnut hole,” the gap between traditional and catastrophic coverage in the drug benefit, also known as Part D.

And, as of the end of November, more than 24 million people, or about half of those with traditional Medicare, have gone in for a free annual physical or other screening exam since the rules changed this year because of the health care law…..

Full article here

Thanks Meta

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Steve Benen: Politico will host an awards dinner tonight, honoring “Policymakers of the Year” in a variety of categories and fields. That wouldn’t be especially interesting, were it not for the news organization’s choice for “Health Care Policymaker of the Year.”

…..House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan….

…. It’s been several months since the political world debated Paul Ryan’s approach to health care in detail, so perhaps Politico has forgotten some of the more important realizations from the debate. Let’s remind the publication of the relevant details….. (see post)

To know all of this, and give this guy an award “Health Care Policymaker of the Year” anyway, is madness.

Full post here

Thank you FiredUpInCA!

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Steve Kornacki: President Obama’s remarks this afternoon captured how dramatically his posture toward congressional Republicans has changed since this summer …. he is shifting the battle to a new, more promising front: the looming expiration of payroll tax cuts.

On this subject, Republicans are increasingly nervous and divided ….. This set the stage for Obama’s appearance this afternoon, where he struck a confident tone and sought to make the GOP squirm even more. Just behind the president was a countdown clock that indicated a tax hike is just 26 days away unless action is taken. He called on Congress to “keep your word to the American people, and don’t raise taxes on them right now,” and belittled the GOP for its seemingly selective devotion to tax relief. “I know many Republicans have sworn an oath never to raise taxes as long as they live,” Obama said. “How could it be the only time there’s a catch is when it comes to raising taxes for middle-class families?”

….This is a new phenomenon in the 112th Congress: Obama and his party seem to have the upper hand – and they know it.

Full article here

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They’re eating each other alive, part 36,278:

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Statement from the Ron Paul campaign:

“We agree, of course, with former Speaker Gingrich – this is a country of people of enormous talent. Those who deliver thousands of babies like Dr. Paul and those who spend their time focusing on promoting themselves for profit. We even have those who lobby, but don’t call it such because, as they say, they can make $60,000 per speech. While those of us in the Paul camp might disagree with Newt Gingrich about whether Donald Trump is the right man to host a serious political debate, we do agree New York is a wonderful place to go at Christmas. We are sure two average Americans like Speaker Gingrich and Donald Trump will have a wonderful time picking out gifts for their wives. We suggest a place called Tiffany’s, we hear it is quite nice this time of year and given their celebrity status they can probably get special deals and $500,000 lines of credit.”

Ouch!

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Reuters: Mitt Romney spent nearly $100,000 in state funds to replace computers in his office at the end of his term as governor of Massachusetts in 2007 as part of an unprecedented effort to keep his records secret, Reuters has learned.

…. The effort to purge the records was made a few months before Romney launched an unsuccessful campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008.

… Theresa Dolan, former director of administration for the governor’s office, told Reuters that Romney’s efforts to control or wipe out records from his governorship were unprecedented.

Dolan said that in her 23 years as an aide to successive governors “no one had ever inquired about, or expressed the desire” to purchase their computer hard drives before Romney’s tenure.

Full article here

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LA Times: ….. Romney says his Bain experience shows he knows how to create jobs …. But a closer examination of the prospectus paints a different picture of Bain’s operation …. Bain expanded many of the companies it acquired. But like other leveraged-buyout firms, Romney and his team also maximized returns by firing workers, seeking government subsidies, and flipping companies quickly for large profits. Sometimes Bain investors gained even when companies slid into bankruptcy.

…. Four of the 10 companies Bain acquired declared bankruptcy within a few years, shedding thousands of jobs. The prospectus shows that Bain investors profited in eight of the 10 deals, including three of the four that ended in bankruptcy.

…. Bain formed GSI in the early 1990s by spending $24 million to acquire and merge steel companies with plants in Missouri, South Carolina and other states. Company managers cut jobs and benefits almost immediately. Meanwhile, Bain and other investors received management fees from GSI and a $65-million dividend in the first years after the acquisition….

Full article here

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Morning everyone ;-)

14
Sep
11

ny-9

Steve Kornacki: Maybe you remember the much-discussed map that the New York Times ran in November 2008, just after Barack Obama racked up a bigger share of the national popular vote than any Democrat had in 44 years. It really was the perfect election for Democrats, with just about everything breaking their way, and yet the Times showed that in a few pockets of America, Obama had somehow fared worse than his party’s previous (losing) nominee.

This phenomenon was mostly centered in Appalachia, but there were exceptions – like the Brooklyn/Queens-based 9th District of New York, where Obama performed one point worse than John Kerry had in 2004 and 12 points worse than Al Gore had in 2000.

This may be the most important piece of information to keep in mind now that the voters of that same 9th District have just handed national Republicans a dream talking point… there really isn’t much that’s remarkable about the victory that Republican Bob Turner achieved on Tuesday night.

Mainly, it tells us what a simple look at President Obama’s job approval numbers (or the economic indicators that are largely responsible for them) would tell us: Voters are frustrated and eager to register their displeasure with him and his party. This is true everywhere, but particularly in areas like the 9th District, where voters already had clear reservations about Obama even before he did anything as president – back when his approval ratings were still stratospheric.

…. None of this is to say that Turner’s win is a non-story … President Obama is in serious political trouble and is faced with an electorate that could easily deny him a second term next year. But then, that would have been true even if the Democrats had pulled an upset or two on Tuesday night.

Full article here

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Nate Silver: …. New York’s Ninth Congressional District has highly unusual demographics, with a set of local issues that are unlikely to extrapolate well to the rest of the country.

… First, there are the local issues – Barack Obama’s positioning toward Israel, Mr. Weprin’s endorsement of a plan to build a mosque and Muslim cultural center in Lower Manhattan, and possibly gay marriage – that will resonate more in Queens than they will in the rest of the country.

Roughly 40 percent of voters in the Ninth District are Jewish, 20 times the rate in the country as a whole. Moreover, and perhaps more important, many of those voters are Orthodox Jews, who often have starkly different political viewpoints than Reform or secular Jews, and who are extremely rare in the United States outside a few spots in the New York region.

There’s also the fact that the district was already behaving unusually in 2008. Despite having a 37-point edge in party registration, Mr. Obama won the election by only 11 points there – barely better than the seven-point edge he had nationwide.

I doubt that there was any district in the country (in 2008), perhaps outside a few remnants of the “Solid South,” where so many enrolled Democrats voted against Mr. Obama.

Full post here

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Read Steve Benen’s take on the result here

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And don’t forget how Weiner won that seat in the first place – here

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Wow, look at that Brooklyn result. :roll:

08
Jun
11

‘the dirty trick that launched anthony weiner’s career’

Steve Kornacki (Salon): …if this does end up being the end for Anthony Weiner’s public career, it might not be quite the injustice it seems like – at least if you know how his career began.

Twenty years ago, Weiner’s opening came when the City Council was radically expanded … One of the new districts, the 48th, would be in Southern Brooklyn. It was a neat match for Weiner … there was no incumbent, and the population was heavily Jewish. He jumped in the race.

He was not the favorite … as the all-important Sept. 10 Democratic primary approached, the consensus was that he’d come up short…

It was at this point that Weiner’s campaign decided to blanket the district with leaflets attacking his opponents. But these were no ordinary campaign attacks: They played the race card, and at a very sensitive time. They were also anonymous.

Just weeks earlier, the Crown Heights riot – a deadly, days-long affair that brought to the surface long-standing tension between the area’s black and Jewish populations – had played out a few miles away from the 48th District…

It was just days after order had been restored that Weiner’s campaign distributed its anonymous leaflets, which linked (Democrat rival) Adele Cohen – whose voters he was targeting in particular – to Jesse Jackson and David Dinkins, who was then New York’s mayor. It is hard to imagine two more-hated political figures in the 48th District at that moment … The leaflets urged voters to “just say no” to the “Jackson-Dinkins agenda” that Cohen supposedly represented. At City Hall, Dinkins held up the flier and branded it “hateful.”

….Weiner finished in first place … only after the ballots were counted did he admit that he’d been behind the leaflets, claiming that “We didn’t want the source to be confused with the message.”…

… who knows where Weiner would be today if he hadn’t made such a dark appeal to racial hostility days after a notorious riot?

…..Is it unfair if he loses his political future because of a scandal as dumb as this one? Sure. But it’s also not exactly fair that he ever made it this far.

Full article here

13
Apr
11

‘obama’s “base” problem doesn’t actually exist’

Steve Kornacki (Salon): Here we go again … President Obama is being confronted with warnings that he’s at risk of losing his left-of-center political base.

…As I write this, Obama has yet to begin his deficit reduction speech, but it’s very possible that the liberal commentators who have been excoriating him for the past week won’t change their minds as a result of it. In other words, expect more of these stories in the coming days.

This ought to feel familiar. Time and again during Obama’s 27 months in office, we’ve witnessed eruptions like this, with one-time Obama supporters claiming that because of [insert Obama action here], the president has lost their support for good….

All of these episode have one thing in common: For all of the threats and dire forecasts, Obama’s base stuck with him. At the same time that he was agreeing to extend the Bush tax cuts, his approval rating among Democrats held steady, in the 80 percent range, where they’d been throughout 2010 – and his highest scores were among self-identified liberals.

And nothing much has changed since then … Gallup’s latest poll has Obama’s approval among Democrats at 80 percent. An NBC/Wall Street Journal survey released last week put it at 83 percent – with a score of 79 percent among liberals. We have heard expressions of outrage from left-of-center commentators about how Obama has sold out his old base – but that base, by all appearance, remains very much intact.

…Just because Democrats instinctively tell pollsters that they want taxes hiked on the rich or that they want Guantanamo closed doesn’t mean they hold those views with the same intensity as commentators who live and breathe these issues for a living. What they do feel strongly about is a more basic and personal question: Do they like President Obama? The answer to this, when it comes to the Democratic base, has and continues to be an overwhelming “yes.”

Full article here

27
Mar
11

chump update: his ‘white house con began 24 years ago’

Steve Kornacki: How The Donald discovered that pretending to run for president can be good for business ….

….Paul Riddell from Texas wrote that he agreed Trump’s “campaign” is a publicity stunt, not just because he did the same thing back in 2000, but because he also did it in the 1988 cycle … it turns out it’s true: The Trumpster’s first fake presidential campaign actually took place 24 years ago…

….he was handed a deal to write the “Trump: The Art of the Deal.” Publication was set for November 1987 … And wouldn’t you know it, a few months before the book’s release, stories began appearing that Trump – seemingly out of nowhere – might jump into the 1988 presidential race as a Republican … “Anyone would be honored to hear this,” he said. Then he swung into action, taking out ads in major newspapers addressing topics ranging from the deficit to nuclear weaponry to Central America. And he scheduled a speech in New Hampshire…

….with his money and bluster, Trump was portrayed as a potential wild card. He denied that he was running – always leaving enough wiggle room to keep the media playing along….Not long after the NH speech, “The Art of the Deal” hit bookstores. It was a runaway hit. And with that, the trips to New Hampshire and the flirtations with the ’88 race stopped. He’d already accomplished his goal: enhancing the Trump brand….

12 years later, with another book to promote, he did it all over again (see here). And now, 12 years after that, he’s back again. (There’s no book for Trump to promote this time, but there is his C-list celebrity train wreck on NBC, which (conveniently enough) premiered just as the Trump for President chatter intensified).

More here

01
Mar
11

‘why republicans are suddenly afraid of obama’

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, a Republican member of the Cabinet, feigns being a blocking back for President Barack Obama as he arrives backstage to meet with GOP House leaders Jan. 29, 2010. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Steve Kornacki (Salon): At Politico on Monday, Jonathan Martin does a nice job explaining the “reality check” that Republicans are now waking up to: Barack Obama seems to be in decent political shape as the 2012 cycle begins, while “breezy predictions of Obama turning out to be the next Jimmy Carter were premature.”

That it’s come to this shouldn’t be that surprising. As we noted over and over last year as Obama and his fellow Democrats braced for a midterm drubbing, the two-year verdict on a presidency is often extremely misleading – as the examples of Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton both attest. With his party running Washington and with the economy reeling, it was pretty much inevitable that the first half of Obama’s first term would play out the way it did.

What is surprising, though, is how quickly it’s come to this…..barely a month after the midterms, prominent conservatives were already admitting that he was looking good to win a second term … lately, Mike Huckabee — who might be the front-runner for the GOP nomination, if only he’d get in the race — has been making headlines by talking up Obama’s strength, as he did to Politico:

“The people that are sitting around saying, ‘He’s definitely going to be a one-term president. It’s going to be easy to take him out,’ they’re obviously political illiterates — political idiots, let me be blunt.”

…for now, the consensus of the political class seems to be that Obama will be reelected in 2012 – and Republicans seem to be buying into it …. Unlike the Democrats of early 2003, who saw a chance to become the next Bill Clinton, the Republicans of early 2011 seem to fear the prospect of becoming the next Bob Dole.

Read the full article here




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