Monday, November 28, 2011

Political Gossip Monday

Her Man Koch-Cain earned his Dreaming Up Daily nickname again Monday with seemingly airtight allegations that he's had a mistress for the past 13 years.  It's a shortlived story probably, since he's been sinking out of the GOPer prez wannabe sweepstakes, so its life will depend on prurient interest, both sexual and the kind that likes to watch car wrecks.  It's hard to feel sorry for the guy, but it's a good bet that his attempt to increase his market value by just enough exposure as a prez candidate has backfired: he got too much.  Lawrence had the most interesting story on this, though, when he claimed that Koch-Cain's long suffering wife (but how much longer?) voted in the Georgia Democratic primary in 2008.  He speculated that she might well have voted for Barack Obama, the first black candidate to have a real chance at the presidency, and if she did, she is among those black people that Her Man claimed were "brainwashed" into supporting Democrats.

So at least for the moment the GOPer race is between Newt Romney and Mitt Gingrich, and if you've wondered why Dreaming Up Daily keeps confusing their first names, Jonathan Chait confirms what is implied: "The Republican race now seems to be between Mitt Romney, the consummate establishmentarian, and Newt Gingrich, an hysterical blowhard. But if you watched Tuesday night’s national security debate, you’d never have guessed which was which."  Though Chiat's point was tht each sounded like the other used to sound (and David Letterman suggests it's easy to confuse them because Romney is the Mormon but Gingrich is the one with three wives), it ultimately supports my point within the conflict-driven horserace chatter: in policy, both foreign and domestic, they are two sad, corrupt and dangerous peas in the same extreme right pod. 

Right now Gingrich is pulling away in the national polls, and he got the endorsement of New Hampshire's largest (and extreme right) newspaper.  In one sense it's more important than the usual newspaper endorsements because that newspaper openly slants it coverage to support its endorsee and destroy his foes.  But among their past GOPer primary favorites were Steve Forbes and Pierre DuPont.  So they aren't exactly kingmakers.

Pol chatter opinion is divided on whether or how long Gingrich will last, and though it seems unlikely he will, GOPers seem hellbent on self-destruction so who knows.  Barack Obama has been very lucky with his opponents, but can he get this lucky?  Meanwhile, the Obama campaign and the DNC are wise to concentrate their fire on Romney (as in the ad above): it could weaken him in New Hampshire, favoring a weaker candidate, or it can define him before he's officially the party candidate.  Which might be awhile, even if he gets there.  Jonathan Bernstein warns that even if he wins Iowa and New Hampshire, it's not a done deal, and others are talking about a brokered GOP convention to select an entirely different nominee.

While attacking Romney as a flipflopper makes sense at this point, eventually the nominee's extreme and dangerous views as well as character (Romney's spinelessness, Gingrich's erratic lack of self-control, etc.) should be the central point, the opposite of the positive case for change.  In other words, the 99% versus the 1%.

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