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Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 12/06/2011

Morning Bits

House Foreign Affairs Chairman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) is the latest to condemn Ambassador Howard Gutman’s inane remarks on anti-Semitism. “Explaining away anti-Semitism as a result of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the actions of the Israeli government undermines the fight to combat global anti-Semitism. Furthermore, the Ambassador’s comments fail to recognize that Israel has made sacrifices for peace time and again, while Palestinian leaders refuse even to recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state.”

He was never the chummiest president. “President Barack Obama’s relationships with Congressional Republicans have withered in recent months, casting doubt on his ability to influence Congress during the election season next year as well as his ability to push an aggressive agenda if he wins a second term.”

Probably not the keenest role model for all those pilots and air traffic controller. “The head of the Federal Aviation Administration is on administrative leave after being charged with drunk driving Saturday night by Fairfax City police, according to the Department of Transportation.”

Only the haziest memory or the most deluded cheerleaders can take Gingrich’s excuse-mongering about his ethics charges seriously. “The problem is that Gingrich actually admitted having prevaricated to investigators for two solid years about the charges. Moreover, it wasn’t just Democrats who found him flagrantly guilty; it was his fellow Republicans, or at least three of the four of them, who joined the conclusion. So how, pray tell, was it politically motivated? All of which is just by way of acting as a fact checker. . . . Politically, of course, Gingrich is an effective salesman, in a way, of the Gingrich cause, which is the cause of Gingrich. World historical definers of and savers of civilization can’t be bothered with petty facts.”

The hardest part of a comeback for Texas Gov. Rick Perry? The “first and most difficult step is for Perry to stop being a bad candidate. He has gotten a bit better under the radar, but needs to continue to improve.”

The creepiest part is the Trump-flattery by the attendees. “We had hoped that after the brief and frivolous publicity stunt Trump branded as exploration of a presidential run, there would be no further occasion to rehearse the many ways in which his sometime association with the Republican party hurts the conservative cause. So we’ll keep it brief: Trump is a tax-hike-supporting, missile-defense-opposing, universal-health-care-advocating, eminent-domain abusing, Schumer-Weiner-Rangel-Reid-donating, long-time-pro-choice economic protectionist who in 2008 called George W. Bush ‘evil’ and lauded president-elect Barack Obama as a potentially ‘great president’ who would ‘lead by consensus.’ The Trump debate is a sideshow, and those who would be the Republican nominee for the presidency of the United States are, one and all, better than it.”

The scariest thing is when Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is the moderate and calm one. Issa on Perry’s threat to ship out uncooperative federal employees to some “God- awful place”: “When you’re running for an office, particularly in the primary, I think there’s always going to be some people who you can’t control their comments or who make a popular statement for a short period of time. By the time we have a presumptive nominee, I would expect that we will be, and I will be, aggressively trying to make them understand that the reforms in the federal workforce are much, much more subtle, because most of the problems in the federal workforce can be traced back to how the Executive Branch, under political leadership, and Congress have told them to act.”

The weirdest race for pundits is one they can’t predict. “An ocean of fluidity floods the race for the GOP presidential nomination, which means Iowans should brace for the possibility of additional changing tides of voter support before the Jan. 3 caucuses, political insiders concurred Sunday after studying results of the latest Iowa Poll.”

By  |  07:45 AM ET, 12/06/2011

Categories:  Morning Bits

 
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