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Right Turn
Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 08/23/2011

Morning Bits

Who thinks Obama’s Libya policy is a model for American leadership? “The question was never whether the United States, EU, NATO, Arab League, U.N. Security Council, and African Union could together using economic sanctions, diplomatic pressure, and military attacks bring Qaddafi down. The question was always how much time, how much blood, and what damage to NATO. Had the White House acted sooner and more resolutely Qaddafi could have been brought down sooner, and with fewer Libyan deaths. Moreover, the lingering damage to NATO could have been avoided. Next time the United States wants NATO to act, how will our European allies react? They will wonder whether this president will jump in and then jump back, will provide American military power and then withdraw some of it, as the A-10s were pulled back from the fray in Libya at an early point. They will wonder whether ‘leading from behind’ is very different from refusing to lead even when the United States has military assets in theater that no other NATO country can supply.”

Who thinks Obama is capable of pulling this off? “The United States must begin a vigorous public effort to lobby other countries, large and small, to oppose the Palestinian effort and join President Barack Obama in pressuring the PA to call it off. Acting decisively now, we can persuade the Palestinians not to press ahead with this damaging course – which undermines our quest for peace and risks anti-Israel terrorism and violence on the Palestinian side, when carelessly raised hopes are dashed.”

Who thinks Obama has a lock on the Hispanic vote? Politico's story headlined “Obama administration works to rekindle excitement among Hispanic voters tells us: “Adding to Democrats’ anxiety are signs that Republicans are trying to take advantage of the strain between Obama and Hispanics. Crossroads GPS, the pro-GOP group advised by Karl Rove, saturated Spanish-language airwaves in key states last month with ads blasting Obama’s record. And one of the party’s presidential front-runners, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, brings a history of courting Hispanic voters. He even backed a law granting in-state college tuition for many children of illegal immigrants.”

Who thinks the vacation in Martha’s Vineyard was a good idea? “President Barack Obama has taken heat for taking a vacation when the U.S. economy is struggling, but aides are striving to make clear he is not neglecting the country’s finances during his break.” Good luck with that one.

Who thinks a detailed defense of Rick Perry’s statements on secession are going to help him? “The totality of Perry’s statements can fairly be interpreted that he prefers not to secede, but in claiming the unilateral right to do so, and the possibility of its exercise, Perry (and Texas) would be seceding of their own free will. Ergo, they would have to want to do it, and as Perry said elsewhere, he thinks that other states would want that same right.” Umm, maybe a “Can’t America take a joke?”comment would be a good idea about now.

Who thinks we won’t see a Paul Ryan presidential campaign one day? “The real play for Ryan, they say, is to continue to lead in the House, shaking up the chamber’s spending ways and nudging the presidential field in the right direction. And while he won’t be running for president this time, his supporters hope that Ryan’s high profile on fiscal issues will make the Wisconsinite a top candidate for the vice-presidential nomination. Being tapped for the VP spot, or even being a serious contender, would strengthen Ryan’s position in Congress as well as in any potential 2016 presidential field. If the Republican wins in 2012, Ryan might end up in the Cabinet. . . . His supporters may be disappointed that he won’t make a run for the presidential nomination this time, but Paul Ryan has more than one way to influence the country’s direction on the issues he cares about most.”

Who thinks she would take him? “Huntsman says he could join Bachmann as VP candidate.” Not in a million years.

Who thinks there’s a good comeback to this? Mitt Romney: “Look, I believe in America. I fundamentally believe that the American people are about to say ‘the Obama experiment has failed.’ And they recognize that. The president is going to come out with a new economic plan. We’ve seen the results of his last economic plan; it’s been an abject failure.”

Who thinks this makes any sense? “As Jon Huntsman tries to save his GOP presidential bid, he’s decided to embrace global warming as a wedge issue.” At some point candidates are going to realize that political consultant John Weaver (who dreamed up the Huntsman campaign) is peddling snake oil. Very expensive snake oil.

By  |  07:45 AM ET, 08/23/2011

Categories:  Morning Bits

 
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