…In an interview with POLITICO, the South Carolina senator made clear that he plans to talk in sober detail about the need to overhaul the social safety net and reform the immigration system to allow foreign workers into the United States. He’s intending to look Republican primary voters in the eye and tell them the GOP needs to — yes — cut deals with Democrats if it wants to survive as a party.
“I’m not going to tell people things that they emotionally want to hear that I don’t think are going to happen,” Graham said in the Capitol on Tuesday.
…Graham says he will address his skeptics head-on, aggressively explaining his arguments that a president deserves to have well-qualified nominees; that both sides need to give a little to put the country on a sound fiscal path; and that a major immigration bill is the way to deal with the range of problems to fix a broken visa system and lax security at the borders. Overall, the message he plans to espouse: It’s better to have a president who is pragmatic than an ideological hard-liner.
The piece, titled “Something is Rotten in the Secret Service,” was published Tuesday. Author and former Washington Post reporter Ronald Kessler speculated that with the detail charged with protecting the president is such a state of disarray, “Five terrorists could come into the White House with grenades and wipe him out.”
“Agents tell me it’s a miracle an assassination has not already occurred,” Kessler wrote. “Sadly, given Obama’s colossal lack of management judgment, that calamity may be the only catalyst that will reform the Secret Service.”
Politico is absolutely shocked that anyone “misinterpreted” the column and has added the following at the end of the piece:
Editor’s note: Some readers have misinterpreted the original last line of Kessler’s article as somehow suggesting that the president should be held responsible in the event of his own assassination. That couldn’t be further from the truth, and we’re sorry if anyone interpreted Kessler’s meaning in any other way.
Well said, please hit the link to read the rest. It is time for us to assert our rights, make it crystal clear with marches and protests and court actions that intimidation of those using their free speech will not be tolerated not by police, not by local governments.
By Lee Rowland, Staff Attorney, ACLU Speech, Privacy & Technology Project at 9:53am
This piece originally ran at POLITICO.
Tear gas, rubber bullets, and assault weapons; free speech zones, gags, and press pens: This is the arsenal of the police state. Some of these tactics are physical. The other ones—all the more pernicious for their quiet coercion—impose a veil of silence over the actions of law enforcement. And each of these weapons has been unleashed on the people of Ferguson, Missouri, since the killing of Michael Brown.
In the first few nights of protest, Ferguson and St. Louis County police responded with a truly inconceivable show of force. Officers suited up in DHS-funded military hand-me-downs, outfitted with goggles, machine guns, sniper rifles, riot gear and gas masks. Distressing warzone-like images flickered into the public consciousness: photos of armed police cohorts pointing loaded automatic weapons at citizens with their hands in the air, women and children’s faces streaming with tear gas and milk and white officers targeting black protesters like it’s Selma circa 1964.
The message was clear: The public is the enemy. And as we the people started getting that message, Ferguson starting working harder to shoot the messengers.
Too long to post here, and too good to just do excerpts, but I’ll post the lede.
Its puerilty has finally crossed over into indecency. Its triviality has finally crossed over into obscenity. The comical political starfcking that is its primary raison d’erp has finally crossed over into $10 meth-whoring on the Singapore docks. Once a mere surface irritation, Tiger Beat On The Potomac has finally crossed over into being a thickly pustulating chancre on the craft of journalism. It has demonstrated its essential worthlessness. It has demonstrated that it has the moral character of a sea-slug and the professional conscience of the Treponema pallidum spirochete.
I do think the sea slug may have been libeled here.
Read the whole thing at esquire.com
Yesterday Politico published The Case for Mitt Romney in 2016 (subtitled I’m absolutely serious — probably so it won’t be mistaken as an Onion-style piece) by Emil Henry. Politico describes the author as assistant secretary of the Treasury under President George W. Bush, as well as a private equity firm CEO. The author describes himself as having served in multiple roles in Romney’s failed 2012 campaign.
Of course, last year Romney went to great pains to inform the public (through his son Tagg) that he never wanted to be president at all. The fact that Politico is publishing this would seem to indicate that either they are venturing into the field of political fan fiction, or the semi-moderate wing of the GOP is dangerously desperate.
In order to save you the trouble of reading this piece, I will simply give the author’s 3 points and then tell you why I think they are utterly ridiculous…although I think it will be rather obvious
1. Romney is re-emerging as the de facto leader of the Republican Party.
Chris Christie is damaged, Jeb Bush is far too reasonable on immigration, Santorum and Huckabee are both jokes, and pretty much everyone else is too afraid of being primaried (or too recently survived being primaried) to say anything meaningful. None of this makes Romney any kind of leader. How exactly has he demonstrated leadership?
2. There is no natural 2016 GOP nominee and the field is highly fractured.
This is true. However, there WAS a natural 2012 nominee…his name was Mitt Romney! The idea that he is not going to be the “next in line” in 2016 is really going to be enough to get him the nomination AND win the genera?!?
3. All failed nominees other than Romney were career politicians.
The author does qualify this by limiting the field to the last half century (so Nixon doesn’t count). Does anyone really think the reason Goldwater, Humphrey, McGovern, Mondale, Dukakis, Dole, Gore, Kerry and McCain didn’t have a second go is because they were career politicians?!?!?!?
My final analysis?
OK, so Tom DeLay found good lawyers with good loophole detectors, but there is no reason to consider his contemptable ass “redeemed,” despite Tiger Beat On The Potomac’s insistence on looking on the sunny side of life.
Smaller and frailer-looking then he was in his glory years of a decade ago, DeLay praised Jesus for carrying him through the long, expensive and politically devastating legal battle that helped sink his career. “I just thank the Lord for carrying me through all of this,” DeLay told reporters as he made his way to a Texas GOP delegation meeting. “It really drove my detractors crazy because I had the joy of Jesus in me, and they didn’t understand it.”
I’d need a direct quote from Jesus, and probably two other sources, before I’d print that quote without throwing up, but that’s just me. Let us not forget that, indicted or not, convicted or not, imprisoned or not, redeemed or not, Tom DeLay never drew a breath in public life when he wasn’t making it infinitely worse than it was before he got elected. Let’s recall threatening judges, shall we, while he was making Michael Schiavo’s life a living hell down in Florida. Let’s recall his stalwart lobbying for slave labor,involuntary sex workers, and mandatory abortions in the Mariana Islands. There’s a whole laundry list of things this guy did that had little or nothing to do with the joy of Jesus, and he did almost all of it for a buck.
To try to siphon off this anger — and provide political cover for wavering lawmakers — the Intelligence panel effectively took over a second, less threatening amendment that had been crafted initially by Rep. Richard Nugent (R-Fla.).
Nugent told POLITICO that he had abandoned the proposal because he didn’t think it achieved the purpose he wanted. But with the leadership’s blessing, Rep. Mike Pompeo, a member of the Intelligence Committee, brought it to a vote in his name, winning easily 409-12.
Critics contended it was a “fig leaf” and only restated current law. But it also gave members a vote to express their concerns without jeopardizing the NSA’s ability to continue as it has.