Quote of the Day

“I know that I was my mother’s first priority and that she wanted a better life for me than the one she was living. She worked 2 jobs and went to community college at night. She refused to repeat the life her family struggled in growing up.”

Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis’ older daughter, Amber.

Davis’ younger daughter, Dru, also released an open letter defending her mother.  Davis has been subjected to vicious GOP attacks about her personal life and her parenting.

Davis — and women in general — can’t win.  The right-wing claims she was a bad mother, but it’s not as if they’d shut up if she had chosen abortion instead.

Some of the slurs are just incredibly vile and disgusting.  A former head of the South Carolina Republican Party,  Todd Kincannon, a truly sick bastard, has tweeted things like this:

“Davis took a short break from blowing campaign contributors today to condemn remarks made by Mike Huckabee.”

“I wonder how many knee pads she went through at Harvard?”

“I suspect Texas voters care that Wendy Davis was potentially going to Harvard coke parties instead of caring for her children.” (I love that “potentially.”  Hell, I could “potentially” run off with Derek Jeter.)

“I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who was as much of a whore as Wendy Davis.”

Those tweets say way more about him (and his party) than they do about her.  Get yourself some help, Kincannon.  Get yourself some help, GOP.  I’m sure there’s a group rate for y’all.

Crazy, Crazier, Craziest

Virginia’s crazy GOP attorney general, Ken Cuccinelli, is running for governor, and I’d just assumed that Virginia’s next attorney general would inevitably be saner.

Silly me…

Meet the GOP’s nominee to replace Cuccinelli, state senator Mark Obenshain.  In 2009, he proposed a bill that would require women to report a miscarriage to local or state police within 24 hours, or face up to a year in jail and a $2500 fine.  So now what — you have to turn yourself in to the police when your period is late?

Wouldn’t this guy be better suited for attorney general in, oh, I don’t know, Iran, North Korea?  A galaxy far, far away?

Could the EPA please check the water in Virginia because something is very f***ed up there?


Quotes of the Day

“I think the president this past week took six or seven states he carried in 2008 and put them in play with this one ill-conceived position [support for gay marriage] that he’s taking.”  Gary Bauer on CNN.

“I’ve gotten calls from pastors across the nation, white and black pastors, who have said, ‘You know what?  I’m not sitting on the sidelines anymore.'”  Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, also on CNN.

I don’t agree with Bauer and Perkins on much, but I worry that these two far-right leaders are onto something.

Voters don’t want to have settled matters, like contraception, re-opened and re-litigated.  But they don’t want to have unsettled matters treated as if they’re a done deal either.  You have to meet voters where they are, and you can’t drag them back into the past like Mitt or into the future like Obama.

Obama Shouldn’t Get Too Far Out In Front Of Voters

It’s only a matter of time — and probably not much time — before gay marriage is the law of the land.  Opposition is quickly declining, and opposition is strongest among older Americans, who won’t be around forever.  Younger voters don’t see it as a big deal.

With the GOP going back to the 1950’s on issues involving women, President Obama should take advantage of their backwardness and not try to move too far forward too fast.  He shouldn’t squander the hole the Republicans have dug for themselves by digging one for himself.

If I were President Obama, I would settle for winks and nods from Biden and Cabinet secretaries, but not go out on the gay marriage limb myself.

He won North Carolina last time, and tonight North Carolina passed a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.  It isn’t worth his making a statement that won’t change anything for gay couples, but could cost him North Carolina and states like Florida, Virginia, and Ohio.

It won’t help gays to have Mitt in the White House —  just ask Ric Grenell.

As Virginia Goes?

President Obama is leading Mitt in Virginia by 8 points — 51 to 43.  Among women, the President is leading by 17 points — 55 to 38%.  Thank you, Bob McDonnell, Governor Ultrasound!

Six percent of those who voted for Obama in 2008 say they will vote for Mitt this time.  But 12% of those who voted for McCain say they will vote for Obama.

Today in The Times, On This Blog Back in February

Last February 29, I posted “Tea Party Excess in the States Will Help President Obama Win.”  I wrote in part:

“People who thought they were voting for smaller, more efficient government [in the states in 2010] found that once these candidates were sworn in, it was all abortion , all the time. … Angry voters showing up to fix things in their state houses will help President Obama stay in the White House.  I believe there will be reverse coattails in 2012.”

Today, the New York Times has a front-page story saying the same thing — “Concern in G.O.P. over State Focus on Social Issues,” by Michael Cooper:

“Some Republican strategists and officials, reluctant to be identified because they do not want to publicly antagonize the party’s base, fear that the attention these divisive social issues are receiving at the state level could harm the party’s chances in November, when its hopes of winning back the White House will most likely rest with independent voters in a handful of swing states. … One seasoned strategist called the problem potentially huge.”

Between Now and November

From “The War War,” John Heilemann, New York Magazine:

“Phony wars are nothing new in presidential politics, to be sure, but rarely have they been this dimwitted, dishonest, debasing, or, when it comes to what the months between now and November hold in store, so utterly depressing.  And yet as dismaying as last week was, it was also revealing of the terrain and tactics that will define the general election — with Chicago relentlessly touting economic fairness and seeking to exacerbate Romney’s weaknesses with key constituencies such as women, and with Boston talking economic opportunity and scrambling to rehab its man’s battered image with those same groups.

“Yet the antic, manic, overwrought first week of the general election did convey two lessons worth pondering. The first is that, on both taxes and the gender gap, the Romney campaign isn’t going down without a fight — and it would behoove the Obamans to beware the ample dangers of smugness and sloppiness and overplaying their (admittedly strong) hand.  And the second is that the campaign henceforward will be anything but pretty.”

When Is an Insult Not an Insult?

When is an insult not an insult?  When it’s a “gift.”  That’s what Mitt Romney called Hilary Rosen’s remark that Ann Romney had never actually worked a day in her life.  Mitt said this at a $50,000 a person Palm Beach fundraiser at a private estate.  NBC reporter Garrett Haake heard Mitt because he was sitting on the sidewalk outside the event, which was held outdoors in a tent.

Ann Romney didn’t seem offended either.  She called it “my early birthday present” and said, “I loved it.”

So I think the Romney campaign needs to shut down the faux outrage machine.  Among their own (other very rich people), both Romneys felt comfortable saying how they really felt and high-fiving the crowd over their lucky break.

You think the Romneys would have learned from President Obama’s “clinging to their guns and religion” comment at a California fundraiser in 2008, that there is no such thing as a true private event any more.

If the Romneys revealed how cynical they are, the White House/Obama campaign revealed how craven they are when they fell all over themselves condemning Hilary Rosen.  Pretty pathetic all around.

Let’s get back to forced vaginal probes, people.

More on Hilary Rosen

From “Hilary and Hillary:  Political Mommy Wars,” Jane Mayer, The New Yorker:

“But when unemployment statistics are compiled, they don’t include unpaid labor.  Volunteer work and full-time parenting are laudable and socially essential, but they aren’t the same thing as a paid job.  Employment, or the lack of it, is the burning issue in America’s economy at the moment.  It was in that context — a discussion of the unemployment numbers on a television talk show, and Romney’s comments that Ann was his source for women’s opinions on the issue — that Rosen spoke.

“Any time the issue can be ignited in politics, those who want to divide women gain.  The resentments and suspicions and insecurities of women on both sides are so deep that it is a surefire way to undermine any chance of women uniting into something resembling a solid voter bloc.  If you want to distract women from issues on which the government actually has a policy role, such as the availability and legality of health-care services (including abortion), childcare, and equal pay, it’s perfect.”  Emphasis added.