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Friday's Mini-Report

05/18/12 05:30PM

Today's edition of quick hits:* It's a busy weekend for international diplomacy, with a G8 meeting at Camp David, followed by a NATO gathering in Chicago on Monday.* Tehran: "The United Nations nuclear monitoring agency said on Friday that its leader would travel to Iran on Sunday for a meeting with the country's top nuclear negotiator. read more

It's all about the metrics

It's all about the metrics

05/18/12 04:25PM

Back in 2004, Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio), then chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, was a little worried about President George W. Bush's re-election. The number of jobs created over Bush's first three years -- after two massive tax breaks -- was negative 700,000.So, exactly eight years ago this month, a jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics looked pretty good, and Boehner was triumphant. read more

Chronicling Mitt's Mendacity, Vol. XVIII

Chronicling Mitt's Mendacity, Vol. XVIII

05/18/12 02:52PM

Back in February, Paul Krugman argued that Mitt Romney is "running a campaign of almost pathological dishonesty." Was this an intemperate analysis? Perhaps. Three months later, does it seem fair? Put it this way: take a look at the 18th installment of my weekly series, chronicling Mitt's mendacity.1. Romney promised in a speech this week, "I will lead us out of this debt and spending inferno."Given that his stated agenda would add trillions to the debt, and Romney refuses to say how he'd pay for his tax cuts and increased Defense spending, the claim seems pretty misleading.2. read more

Undermining the 'competence' theme

Undermining the 'competence' theme

05/18/12 02:02PM

Mitt Romney's campaign, eager to attack the Recovery Act that pulled the economy back from the brink of collapse, thought it had come up with a brilliant idea. The former governor would go to New Hampshire and mock the 19th century Sawyer Bridge, which was restored with public funds, but which is closed to traffic.It'd be a new "bridge to nowhere" that proves the stimulus was wasteful. Obama spent a quarter of a million dollars on a bridge no one can drive on? Outrageous, right? read more

Actually on the actual Internet

Actually on the actual Internet

05/18/12 01:34PM

A week or so ago, Vanessa was cranking away on a segment when she looked up and said something like, "I just found the least readable website in the world." The screengrab she sent has been on my desktop ever since -- not as the wallpaper, just a .jpg.(Click for bigger.) read more

What's the matter with Arizona?

What's the matter with Arizona?

05/18/12 12:38PM

Just when it seemed Arizona Republicans couldn't go much further, Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett (R) is now questioning President Obama's citizenship and isn't sure whether to allow the president onto the 2012 ballot.Bennett's comments came in an interview late Thursday with conservative radio talk show host Mike Broomhead on Phoenix station KFYI.Bennett said he was following the lead of the state's eccentric Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a fellow Republican who ordered an investigation into the president's birth certificate last year and concluded the document released by the White House is a f read more

Friday's campaign round-up

05/18/12 12:00PM

Today's installment of campaign-related news items that won't necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:* The Democratic National Committee shows no signs of letting up on Mitt Romney's controversial private-sector background, releasing this new video this morning, "The Bane of Romney's Existence."* President Obama's re-election campaign is getting increasingly engaged on voting laws, unveiling GottaVote.org today, along with a new video highlighting voting restrictions approved by state Republican policymakers.* Americans Elect, after having spent read more

Boehner on health care: everything must go

Boehner on health care: everything must go

05/18/12 11:28AM

For about three years now, congressional Republicans have sworn up and down that they're hard at work on a health care reform package of their own. It's going to be awesome, they said, and will meet Obamacare's goals without all that unpopular stuff.Sensible people gave up on actually seeing this vaporware quite a while ago, realizing that "repeal and replace" was a rather pathetic scam. read more

Romney allies not helping jobs message

05/18/12 10:38AM

About three weeks ago, Mitt Romney appeared at a campaign event in Ohio, one of the nation's most important battlegrounds, alongside Gov. John Kasich (R). Some Otterbein University students, getting ready to graduate, reflected on the difficult job market, and the governor was quick to set their minds at ease.Kasich noted a website his administration created, listing 80,000 job openings in Ohio, many of which are "exciting opportunities" for young workers, underscoring the state's growing economy.You could almost hear Romney wince while Kasich was talking. read more

Romney's plan for 'Day One'

05/18/12 09:18AM

Mitt Romney's campaign unveiled this morning its first television ad of the general election, a generally positive spot describing what the Republican would do on "day one" if elected.There's nothing wrong with getting voters thinking about what these candidates would do in office in 2013, and given the general vagueness of Romney's policy agenda, it's worthwhile that his campaign start focusing on his top priorities.But his "day one" agenda isn't exactly compelling. read more

Eduardo Saverin's ideological allies

Eduardo Saverin's ideological allies

05/18/12 08:40AM

I suspect most have heard about Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin's decision to renounce his American citizenship, a move that will save Saverin from having to pay federal capital gains taxes just as Facebook's IPO reaps a windfall.Though he denies the move is related to tax avoidance, Saverin's announcement has not been well received. Indeed, Sens. read more

Rationalizing bigotry is tougher than expected

05/18/12 08:00AM

We've been keeping an eye on the controversy surrounding Tracy Thorne-Begland's judicial nomination in Virginia, and it took an interesting turn yesterday.To briefly recap, Thorne-Begland, who enjoyed bipartisan backing, is a state prosecutor, a father, and a former Top Gun fighter pilot, and his nomination enjoyed bipartisan sponsorship, but the Virginia Republicans rejected him anyway. Because Thorne-Begland is gay, and supports equal rights, the GOP said he's biased and unqualified for the state bench.Of course, that rationale didn't make any sense. read more

Morning Maddow: May 18

05/18/12 07:47AM

Today's fight in the House: defense spending and indefinite detention.It looks like the Keystone XL pipeline authorization will be dropped from the Highway bill.Hey, Florida, why the rush to purge your voter rolls?Alabama's Governor calls a special legislative session to soften the state's anti-immigration law.Michigan lawmakers try to repeal their version of "Stand Your Ground."The U.S. now has an ambassador to Myanmar (though we still call it Burma).Yep, that's a campaign metaphor alright:  read more

Links for the 5/17 TRMS

Links for the 5/17 TRMS

05/17/12 11:56PM

Is the filibuster unconstitutional?Common Cause lawsuitA Seventh-Grader's Letter To Ronald Reagan Governor Christie and Mayor Booker: Don't Worry, We've Got This G.O.P. 'Super PAC' Weighs Hard-Line Attack on Obama 'Super PAC' Plan to Link Obama to Rev. Wright Quote of the day Pascrell, Rothman tout liberal views in NJ debate Clinton backs Rep. Pascrell over Rep. Rothman in NJ's Dem primary New Jersey Affordable Insurance Exchange Grants Awards List Chris Christie Vetoes Obama Health Insurance Exchange Bill Brain power robot Paralysed woman moves robot with her mind read more

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