Thursday, April 30, 2009

Graham: GOP Brand Tainted

Via Political Wire:
"Do you really believe that we lost 18-to-34-year-olds by 19 percent, or we lost Hispanic voters, because we are not conservative enough? No. This is a ridiculous line of thought. The truth is we lost young people because our Republican brand is tainted."

-- Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) in the New York Times.
It's a good thing he's not up for reelection anytime soon.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Changing Tune

Video: Sen. Arlen Specter speaks on the Senate floor about Sen. Jim Jeffords leaving the Republican party. Eight years later Specter changed parties himself.

Senate 2010: Florida

The DSCC launches a new ad attacking Crist. Crist hasn't announced that he will be running for the senate seat although most reports seem to imply this will happen as soon as the legislative session in Florida is over.

Crist is very popular in Florida but a couple of the criticisms lobbed in this ad could be very effective -- that Crist is abandoning the job (and the state) when the times got tough and his lax schedule.

Sign of Strange Times?

A governor from Massachusetts positions himself as a conservative, and a governor from Utah is positioning himself as a moderate...
In an interview with ABC News, Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman (R) blasted Republicans in Congress for not engaging with President Obama.

Said Huntsman: "You can't just say no. You can't just obstruct or obfuscate. Instead of just kind of grousing and complaining, it would do us all a whole lot of good if we actually started engaging directly in finding compromises and common ground and shared solutions... When you are devoid of the ideas, or the content that would allow you to articulate or paint a better future, you have no choice other than to fall back on 'no, we are not going support it, it cannot be done."

It seems Huntsman is intent on positioning himself as a possible moderate Republican candidate for president in 2012.
Huntsman also broke with conservatives on civil unions recently. The conventional wisdom is that he is angling for the GOP nomination in 2012. If this is indeed the case, will he succeed? Or, is his move towards the center premature for a party that seems to be getting more conservative, not less?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Specter Switches

Sen. Arlen Specter from PA announced today that he was switching parties.
Republican Sen. Arlen Specter is switching parties so he can run in the Pennsylvania Democratic Senate primary, abandoning his party because he does not want to be "judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate."

Specter, in a Tuesday afternoon statement, said he knows his supporters will be disappointed but says he is "willing to take all comers" in his Senate race. President Obama called Specter this morning when he heard the news and told the Pennsylvania senator that he's "thrilled" to have Specter on the Democratic side of the aisle.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Division of Labor

Politico runs a must-read piece on the Obama economic team and how each team member is bringing his or her own expertise to the crafting and implementation (if passed) of the stimulus bill.

Christina Romer
...She’s an expert on tracking economic outlooks and employment trends. And in a recent report, she estimated that an additional 5 million jobs could be lost this year without an economic stimulus package.

Through complex calculations, Romer aims to plot who will lose their jobs and, roughly, when. By turning those numbers inside out, however, she says she’s able to isolate the industries to target with stimulus cash to save those jobs...
Peter Orzag
...Orszag, who wrote and signed the introduction of that CBO report, will now be charged with making sure the Obama administration’s infrastructure projects are implemented quickly and efficiently.
Read the entire article here.