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Political machines

Political machines

01/11/12 01:42PM

Leave it to 86-year-old Fidel Castro to dream up a futuristic angle on this year’s U.S. presidential elections—apparently what the Yanquis really need is President Robot.In an op-ed in the Cuban newspaper El Diario,  El Jefe disparages both President Obama and his Republican opponents and then asks,  "Isn't the worst part that there isn't even a robot in the White House who could run the U.S. and prevent a war that would end our species?"Castro went on to claim that 90 percent of Americans would vote for the robot over anyone in the 2012 field. read more

Never too young to be a political prop in Ohio

01/11/12 12:15PM

Yesterday in Ohio, supporters of what would be the nation's most restrictive abortion bill lined up children yesterday to make their case. And then they had the children make the case for the Heartbeat bill themselves, starting with a four-year-old boy. He appears on camera at about 1:29 -- he's so small, the press conference speaker has to hoist him up to the mic."My name is Noah, and I'm four," he says, sounding every bit his age. "And I'm a heartbeat."The press conference continues on like that for several minutes. read more

Racing to the bottom for jobs

01/11/12 10:57AM

Indiana House Democrats have started their boycott again in an effort to slow down the Republicans' anti-union bill. The Indianapolis Star ties it to the way Republicans muscled their anti-union bill through a House committee yesterday. They shut down debate on the Right to Work bill, which effectively bans union shops. The Republican chair refused to consider amendments, then called the roll and adjourned the meeting without announcing the vote tally.At the end of the tape, you see the labor supporters in the room promising that this fight isn't over. read more

Government jobs declined this year by 280,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Viewer factchecks Mitt Romney

01/11/12 10:04AM

Commenter @MVP730 takes issue with former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's victory speech in New Hampshire last night. A few excerpts, with Mr. Romney's remarks in bold and @MVP730 after.First point, from @MVP730:Mr. Romney: "The median income has dropped 10% in four years."@MVP730 writes: "First, Obama has only been in office for three years. This is true only if you count Bush's last year in office." The commenter adds this story about how much incomes have fallen."In some ways, the financial crisis has taken more of a toll on the employed during the recovery. read more

Morning Maddow: January 11

Morning Maddow: January 11

01/11/12 07:43AM

Newt Gingrich did  "not break above 20 percent for any of the age, income, ideological or demographic groups that were identified in the exit poll sample."Even if a candidate won every single delegate in every single primary and caucus, he wouldn't secure the GOP nomination until mid-MarchA pro-Romney super PAC makes a $6 million dollar ad buy in Florida and North CarolinaA suspicious sticky bomb kills an Iranian nuclear scientist Sec. Geithner is in China to talk Iran sanctionsU.S. rescues Iranians at sea... read more

Candidates running the New Hampshire gauntlet

Candidates running the New Hampshire gauntlet

01/10/12 09:13PM

I mentioned here once before that where I grew up in New Hampshire, every fourth grade class put(s?) on a musical play about the life of General John Stark (whose "Live free or die" declaration is probably the most famous thing about New Hampshire).Part of Stark's celebrated history is that he was captured by Native Americans and forced to run the gauntlet - forced to run between two rows of warriors who bludgeoned him from one end to the other. read more

The NH Primary coverage plan

The NH Primary coverage plan

01/10/12 06:10PM

Like our Iowa coverage, the night begins at 6pm ET (now) with Rachel, Rev. Al Sharpton, Lawrence O'Donnell, Ed Schultz and Steve Schmidt on the set in New York City.Chris Matthews is live in Manchester, New Hampshire where he'll be joined again by Gene Robinson, Howard Fineman, Michael Steele and more.I've got an unofficial list of other guests we'll see over the next six hours that includes campaign representatives, NBC News embedded reporters and more, so pace yourself with the popcorn.UPDATE: AH! Here's an official (though not comprehensive) guest list for tonight:Tom Ridge, Fmr. Secy. read more

Searching for Rick Perry

01/10/12 04:01PM

Rachel Maddow drives the streets of New Hampshire with Felice Belman, editor of the Concord Monitor, January 6th, the Friday before the New Hampshire Primary, remarking on Rick Perry's weak campaign effort in New Hampshire as indicated by his sparse campaign signage: Rachel Maddow: Rick Perry! Is that a rare, Rick Perry sign?Felice Belman: They used to be more frequent I think. Don't you feel bad for the Perry supporters up here? He's not here. They got so excited about him.RM: Did he ever come here?FB: Yeah, he came here a few times. Just a few times.  read more

Challenge: Rule 2 of political ads

01/10/12 01:33PM

 Wonkette revels in this local ad out of Alabama, calling it "reatest campaign video of 2012, so far." And yes, we all know the candidate wants you to love it, if you support her, enough that you'll send the ad to all your friends. She's also happy if you hate it, so long as you hate it enough that you'll send it to all your friends. It's demon sheep all over again -- it's even got llamas at 00:33.But lo, gentle reader, comes a suggestion from the great Ali Davis. "Rule 1 of political ads," Ali writes. read more

Backstage scenes

Backstage scenes

01/10/12 01:05PM

TRMS producer Andy Dallos had his camera handy off-set following a recent broadcast...Barney Frank browses Thomas Frank.Rachel meets Tim and Nina Zagat. (You know, the Zagats.) read more

'Privacy is often described as the "right to be left alone," but that's not a value that seems terribly important in the GOP right now'

01/10/12 11:30AM

Can the GOP really nominate a candidate who opposes contraception? Really? Truly? In 2012? Jeffrey Toobin writes on the New Yorker's new politics page:Over the years the modern Republican Party has reflected both libertarian and authoritarian tendencies. Both survive, in a way. When it comes to taxes and regulation, the libertarian side of the party is ascendant. Even the rhetoric of compassionate conservatism has faded from view. But with regard to civil liberties, the G.O.P. has embraced state power with a vengeance. read more

What's missing for Jon Huntsman?

01/10/12 10:37AM

Jon Huntsman has gotten better at campaigning, Rachel argued last night, with ads like the one above that blunt frontrunner Mitt Romney's attacks. Our guest, Karen Tumulty of the Washington Post, argued that Mr. Huntsman still has a serious problem:I had a really interesting conversation today with a very prominent Republican here in New Hampshire and he was saying one of the problems with Huntsman's whole message, for instance "I served my country," is that he never closes the circle. read more

Indiana GOP advances anti-union bill

01/10/12 09:40AM

Indiana House Republicans shoved their anti-union bill through committee today in a scene that reporter Eric Bradner details for the Evansville Courier and Press:In less than six minutes and with no debate, an Indiana House committee passed a controversial “right to work” measure Tuesday morning.Majority Republicans who control the committee denied Democratic attempts to offer amendments, and allowed for no debate. read more

Morning Maddow: January 10

Morning Maddow: January 10

01/10/12 07:32AM

Voting began in Dixville Notch last night and the results are in: Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman are tied for first place!And yet, almost 60% of Republican voters STILL want more choicesRon Paul walks out on another CNN interviewWolfeboro is nervous about being Romney's CrawfordNew York state changes its answer to the question, When you are in prison, where do you live?Leaders of Venezuela and Iran joke about having a nuclear bomb.  Ha ha ha?Fukushima worker is in a comaLibya has until 10 AM ET to say whether or not it's going to hand over Saif KhaddafyGonna wash that CO2 right outta my air   read more

Links cited on the 1/9 TRMS

Links cited on the 1/9 TRMS

01/10/12 12:51AM

Mary Kaye Huntsman Calls Attack Ad Featuring Her Daughter 'Disgusting' Paul analysis floats Huntsman video link; spokesman rejects 'conspiracy theory' Rick Santorum is coming for your birth control Ron Paul Signs Personhood Pledge; Personhood USA Questions Commitment US election 2012: Mitt Romney's life as a poor Mormon missionary in France questioned Mormon church obtained Vietnam draft deferrals for Romney, other missionaries Buyout Profits Keep Flowing to Romney How To Trip Mitt: Rhetorical Pitfalls for the GOP Front Runner Billionaire Adelson gives millions to Gingrich Super PAC Suffolk Un read more

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