Archive for March 15th, 2012
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The Huffington Post | By Jennifer Bendery | Posted: 03/15/2012 12:48 pm Updated: 03/15/2012 1:36 pm
WASHINGTON — In a fiery campaign speech on Thursday, Vice President Joe Biden took direct aim at former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for advocating that the auto industry go bankrupt instead of the Obama administration bailing it out.
“[Romney] said let Detroit go bankrupt. He said that,” Biden said to boos during a Toledo, Ohio campaign event. “He said what what we propose, and I quote, ‘is even worse than bankruptcy.’”
More telling, he said, is that Republicans like Romney were instead advocating that the private sector come to the aid of the auto industry, something Biden pointed out was never going to happen. He cited as proof the fact that Romney’s own private equity firm did nothing to help out during the crisis.
“Bain Capital wasn’t lining up to give anybody money,” Biden said. Romney said “the market, Wall Street, will help lift them out … Wrong.”
In the end, the administration bailed out the industry and it is now returning to stable footing. Romney said a government bailout “would make GM, quote, ‘the living dead,’” Biden said. “I say to Gov. Romney — his prediction of a living dead — we now have living proof: a million jobs saved.”
Republicans had high hopes of eroding President Barack Obama’s dominance among Hispanic voters in 2012 — so great was Latino frustration with Obama’s tough deportation policy and his failure to fulfill the promesa of immigration reform.
Instead, with eight months to go before Election Day, Obama is on pace to match the 67 percent support he got from Latino voters in 2008 — and the GOP may be undoing a decade of work to attract Hispanics, thanks to its election-year rhetorical sprint to the right on immigration, a charge led by front-runner Mitt Romney.
Romney — who needs to bolster his support among tea-party conservatives — hasn’t merely embraced the controversial Alabama and Arizona immigration laws, as most in his party have. He’s sought the advice of the controversial co-author of the bills, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who consults with the campaign as an unpaid adviser and whose endorsement has been touted in conservative primary states such as South Carolina and Arizona.
More important, Romney has publicly espoused Kobach’s polarizing philosophy of “self-deportation,” the idea of making life so inhospitable to illegal immigrants they’ll flee rather than face legal proceedings.
Hispanics, a powerful bloc whose vote could decide the outcome in pivotal states such as Nevada, Florida, Colorado and Arizona, seem to have responded by abandoning Romney, with only 14 percent of Hispanic voters favoring him over Obama in a recent Fox Latino poll — one-third of the Hispanic support George W. Bush enjoyed in 2004.
Washington Post / The Plum Line
By Greg Sargent
Posted at 09:02 AM ET, 03/14/2012
Pop quiz: What do the following two events that took place yesterday have in common?
1) Rick Santorum wins the Alabama and Mississippi primaries, with Mitt Romney coming in third in both.
2) Romney tells a local TV station in Missouri that he would “get rid” of Planned Parenthood.
Answer: Both suggest Romney may remain trapped for months in a political dynamic that could damage him among key swing constituencies in advance of the general eleciton.
Romney won the delegate count last night, and by all accounts he moved closer to the nomination. But Santorum’s wins all but ensure that this contest will drag on into June, forcing Romney to continue embracing positions that appeal to the GOP voting blocs he’s been struggling to connect with but could also alienate independents and women. The pressure on Romney to do this could intensify if Santorum is able to unite conservatives behind his candidacy.
In an example of just such a position, Romney said this in an interview with Missouri’s KSDK-TV in Missouri: “Of course you get rid of Obamacare, that’s the easy one. Planned Parenthood, we’re going to get rid of that.”
This is exactly the sort of comment Dems are hoping Romney will be forced to keep making as the GOP nomination battle drags on. The DNC rushed out a video on Romney’s comments, highlighting the cancer screenings and birth control services that Romney would eliminate. The Obama campaign put out a statement arguing that Romney would eliminate “a vital health care provider for millions of American women.”
This comes as a new Bloomberg poll finds that an overwhelming majority, 77 percent, believe birth control should not even be “part of the national political debate.” It also finds that 62 percent think the contraception battle is “a matter of women’s health and access to birth control,” the Dem framing of the issue, while only 33 percent believe it’s about “religious liberty.” Fifty-three percent think Rush Limbaugh should be fired for his “slut” comments.