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Right Turn
Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 11/16/2012

Morning Bits

Get real. “John Boehner isn’t selling out conservatives on taxes. All he has done is reiterate that Republicans are open to a tax-reform deal that generates extra revenues, so long as the entitlements that are driving our long-term debt explosion are also addressed. He has also said that this reform should not raise marginal tax rates, and should indeed lower them. A deal along those lines might be worth supporting, depending on the details.”

Get this man to clone himself — or at least get him a new job after his term. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R), who will leave office in a year, has “one of the highest scores in any of the seven states surveyed by Quinnipiac University, according to a poll released today.Women approve of Gov. McDonnell 48 - 26 percent, while men approve 59 - 27 percent, the independent Quinnipiac University survey finds. White voters approve 58 - 25 percent while black voters approve 41 - 32 percent. Voters 18 to 34 years old approve 48 - 24 percent. The only group that disapproves is Democrats, by a fairly narrow 43 - 34 percent.”

Get a clue, Republicans. “Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said on Thursday that the Republican Party needs to improve its message on illegal immigration in order to appeal to more Hispanic voters. ‘It’s really hard to get people to listen to you … if they think you want to deport their grandmother.. . . You can be for legal immigration. You don’t have to be for amnesty, but you also have to realize that these people are human beings.” But dancing around the problem of those already here isn’t going to cut it.

Get off your high horse, Mr. President. “Wednesday, President Obama bizarrely cast the U.N. Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, as some delicate flower the boys should stop picking on for her dissembling claims on five Sunday talk shows following the killing of 4 Americans in Benghazi. But, there is no damsel in distress and Obama’s paternalistic bravado in defense of a top administration official is going to come back to haunt him.”

Get ready for the real Arab Spring. “Israel’s military assault on the Gaza Strip is complicating President Barack Obama’s Middle East policies just days after his re-election, catching the U.S. between the conflicting agendas of three key Arab partners: Egypt, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority. The White House on Thursday unequivocally backed Israel’s right to defend itself against rockets fired by militants in Gaza, while calling for the safeguarding of Palestinian civilians. And the Obama administration is pressing Egypt’s new Islamist government, which shares ideological ties with Hamas, to rein in Hamas’s militant and political wings.” So far Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is ignoring him.

Get to the bottom of it, Congress. “If that’s what the CIA told her, and she had no access to any other information, then it does explain why [Susan] Rice told a false story about what turned out to be a terrorist attack from the very beginning … on the anniversary of 9/11, no less. Why wouldn’t she have had access to other information? Because Rice had no operational responsibility for anything other than relations with the United Nations. So why did the ‘White House,’ as Obama put it yesterday, ask her to go on five talk shows on Sunday to impart this story to the media and the public? That request had to come from Obama himself, and it bypassed other more likely candidates for that assignment such as Tom Donilon, James Clapper, Hillary Clinton, or David Petraeus, all of whom had some responsibility for the incident.” Good question.

Get the general and Rice in the same room to hash this out. “Petraeus Knew ‘Almost Immediately’ Terrorists Responsible for Benghazi Attack.” So why didn’t he pipe up when Rice went on the air with a phony story?

Get the feeling we’ve gotten there late and don’t know where to look? “The Pentagon has told the Obama administration that any military effort to seize Syria’s stockpiles of chemical weapons would require upward of 75,000 troops, amid increasing concern that the militant group Hezbollah has set up small training camps close to some of the chemical weapons depots, according to senior American officials.” How’s that leading from behind working out?

By  |  07:45 AM ET, 11/16/2012

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