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Thread: The 2012 Presidential Race

  1. #601

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    "Even though I have decades of accomplishment as an actor and director, I'm going to make a fool of myself in 10 minutes."

    Painful to watch.

    Ask any director; actors need scripts.

    Don't know what the RNC was thinking. They criticized Obama for his relationships with actors; so they put a Hollywood icon out at 10PM, when the majority of the audience is tuning in. They were upset at Eastwood's Chrysler ad during the Super Bowl; so they draw attention to it and remind everyone that it was Obama who bailed out the auto industry.

    They make the Ron Paul delegates feel unwelcome at the convention; so they put on Eastwood who, although he professes to be a Republican, is really more a Libertarian, and actually supports issues - gun control, environment, gay rights - that the RNC generally opposes.

    Poor Eastwood is going to wind up on the Daily Show.

  2. #602

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    from moveon.org:

    Did you miss it?


    The Romney campaign produced a video biopic to show Americans how Mitt Romney is a regular guy—just like them.
    But most Americans missed it, because its prime time slot was taken up by Clint Eastwood talking to an empty chair (occupied by an invisible President Obama).1 You just can't make this stuff up.

    We didn't think that was fair, so we're offering Americans our own mock-umentary based on the true story of Romney's hardscrabble upbringing in one of the wealthiest towns in the country. It's called, "The Man from Bloomfield Hills."



    From Selling Daddy's Stock To Buying The Presidency? Mitt Romney's Heroic Story Inspires Millionaires Everywhere


    The Man From Bloomfield Hills — The Mitt Romney Story If he can do it, there’s hope for millionaires everywhere. For every future election. Doesn’t that just make you feel good inside?


  3. #603
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OmegaNYC View Post
    Marco Rubio. I think this guy may run in 2016, but I won't get ahead of myself.
    The best thing the GOP Convention had to offer (and she's seriously good) ...

    Susana Martinez

    New Mexico, Governor

    [Sorry about the link to Faux News
    ]

  4. #604
    King Omega XVI OmegaNYC's Avatar
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    First night of the DNC. WOW! Gov. Patrick, Mayor Castro and especially First Lady Obama, did a wonderful job of making their case to the public. Cory Booker wasn't bad, too. I think two straight nights of this and the Democrats will have so momentum.

  5. #605
    King Omega XVI OmegaNYC's Avatar
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    Dems put "God" and "Jerusalem" back in their platform. I think this will hurt more than it can help. It shows that they're willing to cave into Republican opposition and doing so just for possible votes. Folks want to vote for a party that will believe in their core beliefs.

  6. #606

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    I miss Bill Clinton.

  7. #607

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    The main disappointment I've had about Obama over the last two years is that he didn't react to the reality of the political landscape after the GOP took over the House in 2010. One thing that Democrats, Republicans, and Independents have agreed on is that the 112th Congress has reached record lows in job approval. Obama has allowed the GOP to go about its stated goal of removing him from office with impunity; it's the most blatant example of organized government obstructionism I've ever witnessed. That it occurred during a time of historically deep economic hardship makes it all the more remarkable.

    I wondered what the tone of the DNC convention was going to be. Two days ago I read:


    Would Obama do it; would it be politically risky to put his image on the line?

    As it turns out, he doesn't have to. Bill Clinton did it for him, in a nomination speech that was vintage Clintonesque. Like his best SOTU addresses, it went 30 minutes overtime and frequently drifted off the prepared text. He took apart the GOP without rancor. He delivered the policy wonk speech that Paul Ryan didn't (or wouldn't) give at the RNC convention, and did it in a straightforward manner that was easy to understand.

    One of the Romney campaign lies that Clinton talked about was parroted just yesterday by that neocon rag, The Weekly Standard in a prelude to Clinton's appearance:
    between Clinton's signing welfare reform into law and Obama's undermining it via executive order,
    When he's on his game, I've never seen a politician hold an audience like Bill Clinton. Maybe what Obama should do tonight:


  8. #608

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    Listening to Clinton last night, i could not help but reflect on how poor a comminicator Obama really is. This is the type of speech Obama has needed to deliver, not just at the convention but consistently over the past 4 years. He has allowed the GOP to write the narrative on his administration without holding thier feet to the fire.

    Clinton once again demonstrated that you can be a wonk, and talk policy to the general population in a folksy way they can understand and win them over. It was classic and vintage. Obama, who was thought to be a stong orator prior to his election, can take a page.

  9. #609
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post

    Bill Clinton ... a nomination speech that was vintage Clintonesque. Like his best SOTU addresses, it went 30 minutes overtime and frequently drifted off the prepared text ...
    Just how much did Clinton ad lib? This much:

    Bill Clinton’s prepared remarks: 3,136 words. Bill Clinton’s remarks as delivered: 5,895 words (counting audience cheers).

  10. #610

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    @eddhead:

    Communicate? With whom?

    One of the main points Clinton made was the difference between the present 112th Congress, and the 103rd and 104th during his presidency. And even so, Clinton did not do very much communicating with the 106th Congress - the one that impeached him - during his last two years. Positions had hardened t he point where very little was done during that term. Clinton felt cheated out of his legacy.

    The one thing you can say for Obama and his dealings (or lack thereof) with the present assembly, is that no long standing onerous legislation has yet been enacted. We're still dealing with things like the ridiculous DOMA, which Clinton signed into law.

    Clinton is a communicator, but he doesn't have to worry about votes or build bridges; he can speak his mind in a partisan way, and make no mistake about it, the speech was thoroughly partisan. What he did last night that was remarkable - and rare in today's climate - was to put aside the bad blood that developed between himself and Obama during the 2008 primaries, and let the political animal take over.

  11. #611

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    Obama has not done a good job making his case to the American people. He has not sold the public on Healthcare reform, tax reform, the benefits of the stimulus including support of the auto industry, and all the jobs it saved.. He has not made his case for fixing income inequality, fixing the infrastructure and investing in green technologies. And the result of his failing to do so is a misinformed public which in turn lead to lower approval ratings than what he might otherwise have, and less leverage on an obstructionist congress. In contrast, Clinton clearly articulated the accomplishments of Obama's first term, and the reasons why he should get a second. He sold the public on policy without sounding like a wonk. Obama never bothered to try. That is the difference between Clinton and Obama

    Its the reason why people think the stimulus did not work, that Healthcare legislation will result in disinvesting in Medicare and Medicade, and why people believe he is a socialist of all things. His heart is in the right place, but he has done a poor job of selling, and broadcasting his successes to the public, which leads him wide open to misinformation campaigns. And I am sorry, but that is on him.
    Last edited by eddhead; September 6th, 2012 at 07:47 PM.

  12. #612
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    I miss Bill Clinton.
    His mellifluous flows of logic are a refreshing instance of what a politician/leader should sound like. Not just babbling one liners and tired old rah-rah phrases, but making sense of it all through data, reason and logic. Logic!

    Makes me wonder, WTF is the reason that we have term limits anyways??? Surely voting him in a third term couldnt have been more detremetal than the monumental debacle we ended up with. The last 2+ term limit president was one of the greatest ever in FDR.

  13. #613
    NYC Aficionado from Oz Merry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    I miss Bill Clinton.
    Me, too.


    The Dog and the Preacher


    Why, this time, hope will need a lot of help from a certain ex-president.

    By John Heilemann


    Barack Obama has now delivered three speeches at three consecutive Democratic conventions. The first two were historic: the 2004 keynote in Boston that catapulted him into the stratosphere and the 2008 address at Invesco Field in Denver, in which he became the first African-American presidential nominee. But the third, which he unfurled on September 6, in Charlotte, North Carolina, was a different story, yielding a result that for Obama is as unusual as a moment of self-doubt: lukewarm and even bad reviews. No question, the speech paid a price for deviating from the loftiness and lyricism typical of big-stage Obama orations. It also suffered by comparison—not just to his prior convention barn burners, but to the pyrotechnic performance of his predecessor Bill Clinton the previous night.

    Having been present in the convention hall for all but one of Clinton’s seven convention speeches, I can say with a fair degree of confidence that none was close to as good; indeed, there are Clintonologists of greater range and depth than I who maintain the speech was among the best in any venue that he has ever given. Certainly, the Maximum Canine has rarely radiated as much palpable pleasure (at least in public) as he did the other night in Charlotte. At the time, fortuitously, I happened to be stationed maybe a hundred feet from him on the floor of the Time Warner Cable Arena—so close I could feel the breeze from his tail wagging.

    It’s impossible to gauge with any precision the electoral effects of 42’s or 44’s speeches: Though each was seen by north of 25 million TV viewers, many were die-hard Democrats whose votes would have been in the bag even if both men had stood mute and blown up balloon animals. The import of their addresses, however, extends beyond their qualities as speeches per se, for what Obama and Clinton were doing here was sketching their respective rhetorical road maps for the two-month sprint to Election Day. And while the routes they charted were not identical, if Obama can synthesize them, the resulting path will likely represent his best shot at reaching the finish line ahead of Mitt Romney.

    This tale of two speeches begins with the stylistic disparities between their authors. Whereas Obama is a classic orator, trafficking at his best in soaring stanzas and almost preacherly cadences, Clinton operates more in the mode of an aw-shucks southern country lawyer (albeit one with a public-policy Ph.D.). And whereas Obama excels at the inspirational, the electrifying, and the galvanizing, Clinton’s skills are unparalleled when it comes to a quartet of earthier objectives: distillation, litigation, validation, and evisceration.

    In Charlotte, Clinton vividly showed off his chops in all four areas—starting with his ability to boil down a complex argument to its bare (and highly memorable) minimum. A bazillion words have been expended in this election cycle alone trying to codify the core divergence in values between Democrats and Republicans. But for Clinton, it required just eighteen: “We believe that ‘We’re all in this together’ is a far better philosophy than ‘You’re on your own.’ ” And his encapsulation of the GOP’s case against Obama was at once concise, precise, and hilarious. “In Tampa,” he said, it “was actually pretty simple, pretty snappy. It went something like this: ‘We left him a total mess. He hasn’t cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.’ ”

    When it came to litigation and validation, Clinton was more impressive still. Over the weekend before the convention, the Obamans had been comprehensively befuddled by the most basic question any incumbent faces: Is the country better off today than when he assumed office? For Clinton, this was child’s play: “When President Barack Obama took office, the economy was in free fall. It had just shrunk 9 full percent of GDP. We were losing 750,000 jobs a month. Are we doing better than that today? The answer is yes.” And then he turned to vouching for Obama, making a potent claim on his behalf that he himself cannot. “No president—not me, not any of my predecessors—no one could have fully repaired all the damage that he found in just four years,” Clinton said emphatically.

    And then there was the evisceration. Maybe no politician in our lifetimes has been a more adroit wielder of a serrated-edged blade than Clinton, in part because he generally roots his attacks in policy, in part because he slices and dices his opponent with a smile. Consider his gutting of Paul Ryan on the question of Medicare, which the Republican ticket accuses Obama of raiding to the tune of $716 billion in order to fund Obamacare. After running through an array of details designed to show that, in fact, the president had acted to strengthen, not weaken, the program, Clinton set his sights on the Republican running mate. “When Congressman Ryan looked into that TV camera and attacked President Obama’s Medicare savings as, quote, ‘the biggest, coldest power play,’ I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry,” Clinton said—laughing. “Because that $716 billion is exactly to the dollar the same amount of Medicare savings that he has in his own budget! You got to give him one thing: It takes some brass to attack a guy for doing what you did!”

    Obama, like Clinton, is too proud ever to admit to taking lessons from anyone on political performance, especially from the podium. But in his own speech the next night, there were any number of places where you could hear echoes of WJC: in the lighthearted jabs at the Republicans’ refusal to lay out their policy agenda in detail for fear that everyone would see it as same old same old; in his comment that “the truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over decades”; and, explicitly, in the ad-lib in which he called out Clinton by name, referring to another of 42’s riffs (“People ask me all the time how we got four surplus budgets in a row. What new ideas did we bring to Washington? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic”) in the service of strafing Romney’s economic plan.

    Obama, of course, has his own brand of humor—more dry and sarcastic than Clinton’s by a country mile—which he unleashed on Thursday night. “My opponent and his running mate are [long pause] new to foreign policy. But from all that we’ve seen and heard, they want to take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost America so dearly. After all, you don’t call Russia our No. 1 enemy—not Al Qaeda, Russia—unless you’re still stuck in a Cold War mind warp. You might not be ready for diplomacy with Beijing if you can’t visit the Olympics without insulting our closest ally.”

    Lines like this are more (or can be more) than merely funny. In the service of a clear and overarching purpose, they can be employed to devastating effect. Taken in combination, the Obama and Clinton critiques of Romney-Ryan will be central to the strategy that 44 adopts in the home stretch, and especially on the debate stage against the former Massachusetts governor.

    Underneath the guffaws of the foreign-policy jape above is a withering indictment of Romney as an amateur, a poseur, a man patently unfit to be commander-in-chief. And in Clinton’s data-heavy assault on the Republican agenda, there is an emperor’s-new-clothes play that Obama will drive hard throughout the fall.

    Where Obama could be more mindful of Clinton, though, is in the readiness and willingness—and eagerness, even—to litigate his record in detail. All too often, Obama has shied away from defending, forthrightly and loudly, his main domestic achievements: the stimulus and health-care reform. (Obama mentioned the first not at all and the second only en passant in his speech.)

    Clinton, by contrast, dove in neck deep and made a case so persuasive that even many delegates were stunned by its effectiveness. “Why doesn’t Obama do that more?” was a common refrain in Charlotte, and Clinton plainly agrees. There was never a law he passed that he wouldn’t brag on; Obama should do the same.

    In some areas, to be sure, it makes more sense for Clinton to do the talking—welfare reform preeminent among them. For weeks, Team Romney has been pounding Obama for allegedly “gutting” the law that Clinton passed in the nineties by “dropping work requirements.” The ads, which featured images of WJC, have plainly been gaining traction with the working- and middle-class white voters whom the Republican ticket must carry by vast margins to have any hope of winning. In his Charlotte speech, however, Clinton decimated the ads with as much force as he could muster. “This is personal to me,” he said. “The claim that President Obama weakened welfare reform’s work requirement is just not true. But they keep on running ads claiming it.

    You want to know why? Their campaign pollster said, ‘We are not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.’ ” A long pause. “Now, finally I can say: That is true.”

    For Romney-Ryan, Clinton’s engagement on this issue—and more broadly, as he’s made it clear he wants to hit the road extensively for Obama this fall—is a nightmare. But it is one of their own creation. Had they not elevated Clinton in the first place, putting him in ads, using him as an example of the kind of “good Democrat” that Obama definitively is not, 42’s repudiations of the claims and his validation of 44 might have less purchase. Instead, Team Romney finds itself defenseless, unable to defang the Big Dog, even as Obama counts his lucky stars that the old hound is off the leash.

    http://nymag.com/news/politics/power...ma-dnc-2012-9/

  14. #614

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    my point (Obama's inability or lack of willingness to sell his agenda and advertise his successes to the public) exactly.

  15. #615

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    By John Heilemann

    Barack Obama has now delivered three speeches at three consecutive Democratic conventions. The first two were historic: the 2004 keynote in Boston that catapulted him into the stratosphere and the 2008 address at Invesco Field in Denver, in which he became the first African-American presidential nominee. But the third, which he unfurled on September 6, in Charlotte, North Carolina, was a different story, yielding a result that for Obama is as unusual as a moment of self-doubt: lukewarm and even bad reviews. No question, the speech paid a price for deviating from the loftiness and lyricism typical of big-stage Obama orations. It also suffered by comparison—not just to his prior convention barn burners, but to the pyrotechnic performance of his predecessor Bill Clinton the previous night.
    The media is always looking for something sensational, no matter what the circumstances. A soaring speech like at the 2004 and 2008 conventions would have been inappropriate, and maybe a mistake. Obama spending an hour enumerating his accomplishments may have come across as arrogant and out-of-touch.

    During his term, Obama needed a political ally, someone of stature to speak for him. There was no one. Certainly not among Congressional Republicans, purged of moderates; but even Democrats were intimidated, and offered hardly any support. The 112th Congress is the biggest joke I've ever seen, on both sides of the aisle.

    Bill Clinton is now that ally; he will go out on the campaign trail, and is probably one big factor the RNC wasn't counting on. In that sense, his speech was the most important of the convention. If you look at the entire convention, it was red meat for the choir. The low volatility in the polls is starting to show what I read early this year - this would be an election mostly about the bases.

    For Romney, it will involve vote-suppression; for Obama, get out the vote.

    Obama was speaking to his base, a group with a measure of disillusionment, disappointment, economic pain. He didn't offer them a resume of accomplishment on why he should be rehired. That's what the RNC is doing - a referendum on Obama'a job. Fire him and replace him with anybody, even an empty suit like Romney.

    Instead, Obama offered a choice. It was noted by the media after the speech that the word choice was used over 20 times.

    Toward the end of the speech, he became humble, recognizing the enormous weight of what must be the most burdensome job in the world.

    You know, I recognize that times have changed since I first spoke to this convention. The times have changed, and so have I.

    I’m no longer just a candidate. I’m the President.
    On one level, a message to Romney that he knows what is is to be a President, while Romney does not. On another level, an admission to supporters that the view forward in 2008 was different than the view back in 2012.
    And -- and that -- and that -- and that means I know what it means to send young Americans into battle, for I have held in my arms the mothers and fathers of those who didn’t return. I’ve shared the pain of families who’ve lost their homes, and the frustration of workers who’ve lost their jobs.
    And while I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved together, I’m far more mindful of my own failings, knowing exactly what Lincoln meant when he said, “I have been driven to my knees many times by the overwhelming conviction that I had no place else to go.”

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