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Archive for February, 2012

Posted: 02/28/12 10:14 PM ET  |  Updated: 02/28/12 10:46 PM ET

Huff Post

Mitt Romney was projected the winner in the Michigan primary on Tuesday night by NBC.

Going into the contest, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum was hoping to pull off an upset win over the former Massachusetts governor. Santorum was projected to finish in second place in Michigan, while Ron Paul was projected to finish third with Newt Gingrich in fourth.

Romeny emerged victorious in the Arizona primary earlier in the night.

HuffPost’s Mark Blumenthal reports:

In Michigan, according the exit polls currently posted by CBS News, Romney runs strongest with Republicans who report incomes of $200,000 or more per year, running 26 percentage points ahead of Rick Santorum (55 percent to 29 percent). He runs ahead but by a much smaller, seven-point margin among those earning $100,000 to $200,000 per year (44 percent to 37 percent) and trails Santorum by four (35 percent to 39 percent) among those earning $100,000 or less.In Arizona, the pattern is similar: Romney is leading Santorum by a whopping 48 points (63 percent to 15 percent) among those earning $200,000 or better and by smaller margins among those in lower income groups. Santorum only comes close in Arizona among voters earning less than $30,000 per year, trailing Romney by just two percentage points (32 percent to 34 percent).

This pattern has been remarkably consistent, as shown in the following table, based on the seven states for which National Election Pool exit polls are available. In each case, Romney’s vote is much higher among voters earning $100,000 or better than among voters earning $50,000 or less

Following the contests in Michigan and Arizona, the race for the Republican presidential nomination will now turn to Super Tuesday.

This is a developing story… More information to come…

(From delegates to Twitter followers, click here for a rundown on who’s ahead in the primary race.)

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February 28, 2012

Addicting Info- By

Ever since the US Government saved the American auto industry from the abyss through a bail out that kept millions of jobs from being lost, the Republican Party has bitterly bashed the action, especially since President Obama took over the Oval Office. The GOP believes that the American auto industry should have been allowed to fail and had they gotten their wish, millions of Americans would have become unemployed and the American economy would have collapsed even more.

On Tuesday, President Obama answered his Republican critics while speaking to the United Auto Workers convention in Washington DC and defended the American industry along with the workers who continue to make it thrive. Here is part of what Obama said, via Huffington Post.

“It’s been funny to watch some of these politicians completely rewrite history now that you’re back on your feet,” President Obama said. “These are the folks who said if we went forward with our plan to rescue Detroit, “You can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye.” Now they’re saying they were right all along. Or worse, they’re saying that the problem is that you, the workers, made out like bandits in all of this; that saving the American auto industry was just about paying back unions. Really? Even by the standards of this town, that’s a load of you-know-what. About 700,000 retirees saw a reduction in the health care benefits they had earned. Many of you saw hours reduced, or pay and wages scaled back. You gave up some of your rights as workers. Promises were made to you over the years that you gave up for the sake and survival of this industry, its workers, and their families. You want to talk about values? Hard work — that’s a value. Looking out for one another — that’s a value. The idea that we’re all in it together — that I am my brother’s keeper; I am my sister’s keeper — that is a value.

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Posted: 02/28/12 07:28 PM ET  |  Updated: 02/28/12 07:41 PM ET

Huff Post  By- Michael McAuliff

WASHINGTON — The White House released rules Tuesday evening waiving the most controversial piece of the new military detention law, and exempting U.S. citizens, as well as other broad categories of suspected terrorists.

Indefinite military detention of Americans and others was granted in the defense authorization bill  President Barack Obama signed just before Christmas, sparking a storm of anger from civil libertarians on the left and right.

The new rules — which deal with Section 1022 of the law — are aimed at soothing many of their gravest concerns, an administration official said. Those concerns are led by the possibility that a law that grants the president authority to jail Americans without trial in Guantanamo Bay based on secret evidence could easily be abused.

“It is important to recognize that the scope of the new law is limited,” says a fact sheet released by the White House, focusing on that worry. “Section 1022 does not apply to U.S. citizens, and the President has decided to waive its application to lawful permanent residents arrested in the United States.”

It also addresses a concern of the White House and advocates of civil law enforcement, insisting that even if a suspect is transfered to the military, the person can be shifted back if the administration believes it is important for national security.

“An individual required to be held in military custody under Section 1022 may be returned to law enforcement custody for criminal trial,” the White House summary says. “In addition, Section 1022 does not change the FBI’s authorities to respond to terrorism threats and these procedures do not apply to any individuals held in the custody of the Department of Defense, state and local law enforcement agencies acting under their authorities, or a foreign government.”

Advocates for liberties will likely find the new rules for implementing reassuring, at least while President Obama is in office. But one of their big complaints with his signing of the law is that his policies only last so long as he is in office, and they will likely step up attempts to repeal it.

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The Huffington Post
First Posted: 02/26/2012 11:12 am Updated: 02/26/2012 12:40 pm

Rick Santorum on Sunday took on of separation of church and state.

“I don’t believe in an America where the separation of church and state are absolute,” he told ‘This Week’ host George Stephanopoulos. “The idea that the church can have no influence or no involvement in the operation of the state is absolutely antithetical to the objectives and vision of our country…to say that people of faith have no role in the public square? You bet that makes me want to throw up.”

The GOP candidate was responding to comments he made last October. He had said that he “almost threw up” after reading JFK’s 1960 speech in which he declared his commitment to the separation of church and state.

Santorum also on Sunday told Meet The Press host David Gregory that separation of church and state was “not the founders’ vision.”

The GOP candidate has been doubling down on religious rhetoric in an effort to court evangelical voters ahead of Super Tuesday. Last week, he questioned Obama’s spiritual beliefs.

“[Obama believes in] some phony ideal, some phony theology … not a theology based on the Bible, a different theology,” he said.

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February 26, 2012

Addicting Info  By-

In an interview today, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer endorsed Mitt Romney for President. And for the second time in a month, she publicly disrespected the President.

On NBC’s Meet the Press, Brewer said of Romney, ”He handles himself very very well,” she said. “But more than that he has that pro-business background.”

For Brewer, an endorsement of Romney is hardly going out on a political limb. The state’s primary is in just two days and Romney is basically a shoo-in.

Romney, on the other hand, is probably shrugging his shoulders at Brewer’s endorsement. Brewer is a polarizing figure. Arizona is an extremely conservative state, yet she enjoys just a 46% job approval rating. 84% of Democrats disapprove of Brewer and 54% of independents see the Governor in an unfavorable light. It’s doubtful that her endorsement will change the votes of many Arizonans, but if Romney becomes the eventual nominee, he might find himself having to distance himself from the woman whose number one political strength is pure, unadulterated meanness.

On the same day she endorsed Romney, Brewer turned down an invitation to a dinner at the White House. The Speaker of the House, John Boehner has also turned down state dinners.

Meanness is nothing new in today’s conservative politics. In 2008, Sarah Palin graduated the term “mean girl” from the halls of high schools everywhere to the halls of a political convention. Even before that, conservative talk show hosts such as Rush Limbaugh made cruel sport of everyone who isn’t white, male and conservative.

However, something has happened since 2008. The flood gates have opened. Meanness, once a political liability, has become a viable political strategy. In 2010, the State of the Union Address, once a symbol of political decorum, was interrupted by a Congressman calling the President a liar. New Jersey’s Governor, Chris Christie, is famous for his abrasive, “in your face” style of politicking. Republican debate audiences boo healthcare and cheer for death.

A certain segment of the voting public, mostly those on the far right, eat it up. It doesn’t take a psychologist to see why. Voter anger has been fueled and misdirected by FOX News, right-wing talk radio and by politicians. Rather than focus their anger at those at the top of the economic food chain, they see enemies of those who have the fewest advantages. Rather than blaming employers that strangle wages by hiring undocumented workers, they blame the workers as being competition in a tight job market. Rather than blaming the banks, they blame their neighbors. Rather than blame themselves for their crumbling families, they blame gay people, abortion and Planned Parenthood.

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Gawker-  By Mobutu Sese Seko

Feb 23, 2012  2:05 PM

The after effects of the Citizens United ruling shouldn’t shock anyone. Corporations were granted the ability to spend ungodly sums on campaigns, and guess what they’re doing?

They’re spending ungodly sums on campaigns.

There is one byproduct of this mess, though, that is unintentionally fun to observe: Americans get to watch billionaires hijack the election process like a bunch of shit-hammered uncles blindly destroying a pious family gathering we wanted to skip in the first place.

Currently, just five donors are controlling 25 percent of funds pouring into GOP super PACs. In the last week alone, faux cowboy Foster Friess made Rick Santorum’s “aaaiiiigh! intercourse!” campaign about aspirin and women’s knees, island builder Peter Thiel came to Ron Paul’s aid by upping his investment to $2.6 million, Sheldon Adelson gave Newt Gingrich another $10 million, and we learned that Mitt “I Like to Fire People” Romney has a huge backer in Frank “I Like to Sue Blogs out of Existence” VanderSloot.

(We won’t talk about VanderSloot here—because he likes to sue blogs out of existence—except to say that he looks like Alternate Universe Dick Cheney‘s opening-credits photo from Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. He’s the one who knows about wine and shaving brushes.)

In years past, we would never have met these guys. Even as far back as 2000, if you wanted to be a billionaire who ran a campaign, you actually had to be the one campaigning. Ross Perot set the standard in 1992, opening the door for men like Steve Forbes.

Forbes, unfortunately, demonstrated how troublesome rich-guy candidacy could be: Namely, he proved that being rich is proof of nothing other than being rich (his major life accomplishment was emerging from Malcolm Forbes’ wife), and wanting to keep being rich is a shitty platform for the 270 million-plus Americans who are not. In later years, we came to think of Forbes as “the creepy version of Rory Gilmore’s grandpa from The Gilmore Girls,” but in 1996 and 2000, it was obvious why he steered any question back to the need for a flat tax. That stuck out. Herman Cain perfected this failing greedheaded tax formula by replying, “Nine, nine, nine…” endlessly on the stump, like he was going through some celestial voicemail, begging for an operator to come on the line and tell him what Libya is.

What Citizens United has done, however, is create a formula for actual campaign surrogacy. Billionaires with two ideas (“I want to keep being a billionaire!” and “Something else!”) can remit funds to the person whose job it is to have all the other ideas. It’s great fun. We’re lucky to get the chance to meet these guys.

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