Mitt Romney’s new low? And does he need a new strategy? [AM Briefing]

Romney’s ‘47 percent’ comments are a new low: “I thought we’d reached new heights of chutzpah in 2010 when Paul Ryan claimed to be a “fiscal conservative” — even though his original “Roadmap for America’s Future” added $62 trillion to the national debt before balancing the budget a half century from now,” writes CAP’s Matt Miller. (Washington Post)

Politico’s Arena asks: A video showing presidential candidate Mitt Romney disparaging Americans who don’t pay income tax, topped with trailing numbers in key battleground states has GOP operatives and other party members just short of a panic. What strategic changes - if any - does the Romney campaign need to make in the coming weeks?

“The federal budget proposed by Representative Paul Ryan, the Republican vice-presidential nominee, extols the benefits of “promoting true choice” for Medicare beneficiaries. In truth, though, the Ryan plan would substantially reduce choice for many people on Medicare -- by cutting them off from their current doctors,” writes CFR’s Peter Orszag. (Bloomberg)

Brookings’ Michael O’Hanlon: Obama, Romney playing same defense. (USA Today)

“The Obama administration’s omnibus answer to why the Middle East (and now much of the Muslim world) is in near-open rebellion against the United States: The video did it,” writes AEI’s Jonah Goldberg. (National Review)

Room for Debate asks: The nonstop news cycle can amplify any controversy in the presidential campaign, and on the world stage. But can the waves of coverage also diminish the power of a controversy, when the media move on to the next story? How does a story whose power is sustained differ from one that is of passing interest? (New York Times)

Manhattan Institute’s Diana Furchtgott-Roth: Food stamps expand by leaps. (Washington Examiner)

Heritage’s Robert Rector: Obama’s end run on welfare. (National Review)

Hoover’s Chester Finn: Young, gifted and neglected. (New York Times)

Brookings’ Russell Wheeler: The case for confirming district court judges. (Politico)

Allen McDuffee writes about politics and policy and covered think tanks for The Washington Post from 2011 to 2013. He blogs and hosts a podcast at governmentality.net and is currently working on a book about the influence of think tanks in Washington.

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