John King, USA

The latest political news and information on the most important stories affecting you.
March 8th, 2012
02:42 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- I've been able to confirm that the Gingrich affiliated Super PAC has still been running ads in Florida, even after the loss there. They've also been heard or seen in Virginia, Michigan, and even in Iowa. Some of them are national ad buys no doubt, but several people tell me definitely that they've heard radio spots on local radio, not national shows like Limbaugh. What is going on?

- I get the strong sense that the 2012 campaign is going to see a battle between old technology and new technology with the GOP more focused on old technology and advertising and less on the internet and grassroots. Can advertising alone turn people out to vote? I doubt it and I wonder about the much hyped Romney machine, given what we saw in Ohio and Michigan.

- The House and Senate GOP is risking the ire of conservatives on three fronts. First, they keep pushing an Export-Import Bank that really only favors Boeing and GE. Second, they are pushing a bloated highway bill as a jobs plan. Third, they keep hinting that they are scared of repeatedly pushing for full repeal of Obamacare. It's not just Romney discouraging the base.

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- Leading conservatives realize that the White House is out of reach but still fail to realize why. How many years will it take to get to conservatism 1.2?

- Last night, Comcast unveiled four new minority-owned channels making it the leader in the entertainment industry when it comes to addressing Americas changing demographics. Any followers out there?

- Joe Biden gave the best defense on the DREAM act yet during a recent Spanish TV interview. Hey Joe, tell the President to pull out his exec pen.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
March 7th, 2012
07:39 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Gingrich got almost as many delegates last night just from Georgia as Santorum did with three states. But, it is questionable if Gingrich can get momentum headed into Mississippi and Alabama given he was expected to win Georgia and Santorum came so close in Ohio. If Santorum wins Kansas, he could rebound, but I'm thinking the Santorum complaints about Gingrich serving as a spoiler are legit. By the way, what exactly is the Gingrich Super PAC spending money on?

- Stop the presses — I, critic of Romney that I am, see no way for Santorum or Gingrich to win the nomination now. The best case scenario is they keep Romney from getting to 1144, but neither of them are going to pass him in the delegate race now. At some point somewhere someone has to be thinking about things like "for the good of the party" and "for the good of the country."

- In all honesty, the biggest story to me after last night is Ron Paul. The sound and fury of his supporters cannot make up for the fact that he has won zero states. He could have capitalized on anti-Romney sentiment in Virginia and won there, but gave it a pass. Why? It seems he is more interested in blocking for Romney than actually winning. It could be he just really does not like Santorum or Gingrich, but why stay in now? No one is really paying attention to him any more except his pre-existing supporters whose votes aren't really helping Ron Paul or shutting down the Federal Reserve.

Firedoglake.com Blogger/Founder Jane Hamsher:

- #Stratfor Source “Mrs. P” Who Called Obama a “Wimp” – His 2012 Campaign Co-Chair Penny Pritzker?

- Super Tuesday Primary Primer

- Holder’s Regressive Defense of Targeted Killings

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors."


Filed under: Bullet Points
March 6th, 2012
05:32 PM ET

Be in the know: Today political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- Romney readies for his victory lap and Obama joins him as the GOP falls into the doldrums

- 2012 will again be the “year of the woman” at the polls, nobody can recruit pro-choice voters like anti-choice politicians.

- Latino voters outside of Florida are ready to reject Marco Rubio should he become the GOP VP nominee which is making him think twice according to GOP whispers

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Two things to look for tonight: Does Newt get to 50% in Georgia? If so, he gets all the delegates. Does Romney beat Santorum in Ohio? If so, he is the nominee.

- "War Against Women" is the new spin from the left. Seriously? I know no man who wants a war with women. And, if the taxpayers are going to be forced to pay for all the contraception in America, the war will between men fighting over the women. How silly this is?

- It is Super Tuesday. My 6-year-old thought it was called that because Barbie's Mermaid Tales 2 came out on DVD today. Actually, it is because of all the elections. Here in Middle Georgia, turn out is low as was early voting. There is little excitement.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points
March 5th, 2012
12:46 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- Rush to Polls: Rush Limbaugh single handedly highlights one of the biggest GOP vulnerabilities – independent and moderate Republican Women voters.

- Head Rush: GOP House leadership ineffectiveness has team Pelosi celebrating as the nation’s first female Speaker readies for a comeback on the heels of a backlash from women voters as Rush is the gift that keeps on giving.

- Rush to Judgment: Radio execs are watching breathlessly as they assess the financial damage of hurricane Rush and what it means as Latino and African Americans are now not the only ones complaining about radio talk show virulence.

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Back in the late 80's, early 90's, Hollywood advocates for the homeless put out a survey showing a ridiculously high number of homeless. The survey led news reports across America, shaped editorial coverage and news coverage of the issue, and led to calls for Reagan and Bush to do something. Only later did non-advocacy data come out showing the numbers were grossly inflated. In the present situation on contraception, I'm reminded of this and how social policy, unlike few other topics, really highlights liberal presuppositions in the media. The Gutmacher Institute's 99% number on birth control in one issue. Sandra Fluke's $3,000 for birth control is another. And the media seems more disposed to dealing with Sandra Fluke's testimony via Rush Limbaugh's statement than her actual claims.

- You heard it here — Romney is going to win Ohio. Santorum badly, badly played his cards. And once Romney wins Ohio, he'll be the nominee, despite more losses in the South. His path to victory resembles more and more Michael Dukakis's path to victory in 1988. Lot of good that did him.

-Big under the radar story for conservatives this week: The Export-Import Bank. It pits big business against entrepreneurs and domestic purchases against foreign sellers. It is going to be a fight.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
March 2nd, 2012
12:07 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- There is a lot of outrage today over Rush Limbaugh's comments regarding Sandra Fluke. I understand the outrage, but his commentary — using insult and sarcasm — highlights an outrage people have been dancing around that encapsulates pretty accurately Sandra Fluke's testimony before Congress. Ms. Fluke is a Georgetown Law School student who believes insurers should be mandated to provide "free" contraception given the high costs of birth control. Her argument that so many have danced around is that though the act she wishes to engage in is both private and consensual, the rest of us should have to subsidize it. Reducing "women's health" to a euphemism for sex does nothing to really improve women's health.

- Gas prices continue to go up in this mild winter and will more likely than not go up further in the summer. If they do, gas prices will potentially drag down the economy and could hurt Barack Obama.

- Meanwhile, in economics land, the fact is measure after measure seems to be improving. The truth is, as the economy improves, Barack Obama's poll numbers will go higher, making it harder and harder for the GOP to beat him.

Firedoglake.com Blogger/Founder Jane Hamsher:

- Live Blog: WikiLeaks Releases the Stratfor Emails (Day 4)

- The Power of Aggressive Journalism

- Schneiderman Could Focus on REMICs in Bank Fraud Inquiry

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
March 1st, 2012
05:22 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- People Power: Romney will win the GOP nomination, but a look at the map shows that his road to the White House can be derailed in November by the power of Latino voters.

- Fire Power: The power of the NRA is apparent as another tragic high school shooting brings silence from policy makers.

- Real Power: P-Diddy causes a stir for merely offering that his personal victory as a new Comcast Channel owner is not his alone, but is also a win for the African American community. Note to Mr. Combs: more power to ya.

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Andrew Breitbart died. He is remembered as a blogger and conservative activist. He really was a dot com pioneer, starting at the Drudge Report and then having the genius idea of buying an Associated Press wire feed for himself and starting Breitbart.com. He used his name as a lightening rod and was happy to take the attention to focus it on issues and causes he cared about. He will be missed.

- The Senate failed to pass the Blunt amendment, which was expected. But, it gave Senators Joe Manchin and Bob Casey cover to say they opposed the President. I supported the amendment, but agreed with many conservative groups who privately wanted more time to build a case for the amendment.

- Alexander Bolton at The Hill is reporting Mitch McConnell wants to avoid bringing up any measure for full repeal of Obamacare this year lest it cause problems between Senate Republicans and Democrats. Needless to say, conservatives are ready to riot against McConnell.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
February 28th, 2012
11:17 AM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- One Way Road: Santorum is in it to win it as the GOP falls into it’s familiar pattern of raising social issues to drive it’s base voters. Note to Democrats: you have a base that you can pander to as well.

- U Turn Ok: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker will most certainly face a recall as organizers have delivered almost twice as many signatures as needed. Note to Republicans: It is not a good idea to inspire people against your own party’s politicians.

- Two Way Street: Latina leaders in the swing state of Colorado are holding their first fundraiser for a new group, American Dream PAC, designed to flex political muscle. Note to both parties: don’t underestimate this group or it’s inevitable off-spring.

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Democrats for Santorum? The campaign is certainly seizing on antipathy for Mitt Romney to win in Michigan, but at what cost? I continue to think the campaigns are playing to their weaknesses, not their strengths. I want a new candidate in the race.

- I admit I am in the minority here, but having gone back to the news archive from 2009-2010, I continue to believe the "women's health" rhetoric about Barack Obama's attack on faithful Christians — and I do view it as an attack on faithful Christians — is this year's "Party of No." In 2010, Democrats, reporters and "ranking Republicans on background" were all convinced the angry tea party mob had turned the GOP into a Party of No that would turn off independent voters. They even had polling to show that. And yet . . .

- Two new Georgia polls are out. One is by WSB-TV out of Atlanta (I've got a radio show on WSB Radio) and the other by 11 Alive/Survey USA. WSB shows Romney at 20%, behind Gingrich and Santorum. 11 Alive shows him at 23% behind Gingrich and Santorum. While neither Gingrich nor Santorum is on the Virginia ballot, if Romney gets less than 20% in Georgia, the state with the most delegates at stake on Super Tuesday, he will get zero delegates from Georgia, offsetting Virginia and keeping this race going.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
February 24th, 2012
04:08 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:"

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- It is hard to express my disgust with National Journal today. I have so much respect for the organization, but it released its annual scorecard of ideology among congressmen today and signals that in a post-tea party Washington, DC it wants to be an un-evolved troglodyte when it comes to covering the evolved nuances of ideology in Washington. It also explains why so much political coverage is so bad these days. Too much political coverage equates conservative with Republican and liberal with Democrat when that is increasingly far from reality.

- A year ago in January, Energy Secretary Stephen Chu said he wanted to get American gas prices up to European levels, which a year ago were $7 to $8 a gallon. Looks like he is headed there. It is really hard to believe the President's concern for gas prices is sincere given his own administration's positioning trying to change American habits on energy.

- Twenty years ago, Republicans wanted to expand domestic energy drilling and the Democrats said no because it would take ten years to reap the benefits. Ten years ago, Republicans tried again and again Democrats said it would take ten years, so no way. Well, here we are.

Firedoglake.com Blogger/Founder Jane Hamsher:

- Workers Re-Occupy Former Republic Windows Factory

- Who Would You Trust to Repair Komen’s Reputation?

- Romney’s Favorable Numbers Tanking, are we Shocked?

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
February 23rd, 2012
03:50 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

Senior Editor of MarioWire.com Mario Solis-Marich:

- Careless Whispers: Santorum admits he votes against his principles and hands Romney a great clip for a future nasty ad.

- Time After Time: Gov. Christie vetoes gay marriage, taking a waning position that was popular in the 1980’s and hoping it still be so in 2016.

- Start Me Up: Comcast launches four minority-led channels creating the greatest media opening for Latinos and African Americans seen in decades.

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- My friend Ben Domenech makes a good observation in his must read "Transom" daily email regarding Romney's speech about his new tax plan. He writes, "Finally a Republican who promises to preserve our tax code's progressivity! Once again, as numerous commentators have noted, Romney speaks the language of conservatism as if he’s someone who tried Rosetta Stone for a couple days and then left it gathering dust."

- Conservative reaction to Romney's tax plan continues. The Club for Growth, and even National Review, a publication sympathetic to Romney, are underwhelmed. It took 170 days for Romney to largely discard the first of his 59 points, but he still has no plan to balance the federal budget.

- The big winner from last night's CNN debate was Barack Obama. Well, okay, Gingrich won the debate itself, but the President has to be pleased. No, let's not go with the conventional wisdom that the Republicans have gone right — something you rarely hear the press lament about Democrats in campaigns. No, he won because the GOP got lost in the weeds trying to differentiate themselves. The weeds get mowed down in yards. And voters sure don't vote for them.

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections • Uncategorized
February 22nd, 2012
05:38 PM ET

Be in the know: Today's political bullet points

Everyday we ask influential politicos to send us their top three bullet points that are driving the day's conversation in and outside Washington:

RedState.Com Editor Erick-Woods Erickson:

- Tonight, live from Mesa, AZ, the Republican candidates will fly to the moon to battle Satan. Or something like that. Expect fireworks!

- Mitt Romney got attacked a lot on twitter today. That's not unusual. What is unusual is that it was his supporters doing the attacking, saying his presentation of his new, new tax plan sounded too much like Barack Obama.

- A group of Christian ministers sent out a mass letter saying the GOP should lay off the Obama/religion talk. The signatories make up the more liberal wing of the church and outnumbered by the evangelicals, who largely agree with the candidates. For perspective, the Southern Baptist Church has about as many members as all the mainline protestant denominations combined. And, I'm pretty sure the SBC membership would agree more with Franklin Graham than the National Council of Churches.

Firedoglake.com Blogger/Founder Jane Hamsher:

- Iceland Provides Blueprint for How to Deal With the Financial Crisis

- A Horrible Way to Run a “Democracy”

- Khader Adnan & the Global Practice of Administrative Detention

Editor's Note: The blog is a place for a freewheeling exchange of ideas and opinions. CNN does not endorse anything said by its contributors.


Filed under: 2012 • Bullet Points • Elections
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