Friday, February 15, 2013

Weekly recap


It's time for the weekly recap of all the doings of the potential presidential candidates.

This week, I tackled both the GOP and Democratic field. As usual, I handed out awards for my favorite pieces of reporting and commentary.

Also, there were a couple big things that happened on the '16 front that didn't get a ton of play in the news, as everything was drowned out by SOTU and Rubio's gulp.

The first is that Susana Martinez is now supporting legislation that would require background checks at gun shows. That's a big deal. And the second is that Andrew Cuomo's looming decision on fracking is getting into a bigger deal every day.

Here's the recap...




New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R)

a. Reconciliation: Two Romney brothers show up at Christie's California fundraiser.

b. Reelection race: He leads Barbara Buono (D) in New Jersey, 62%-21%.

c. A tea party Republican, Seth Grossman, will run against Christie in the primary, says it's not an impossible task.

d. Monmouth poll: Christie holds a 70%/17% approval rating (Dems give him a 58% rating!).

e. Mark Zuckerberg raised money for Christie on Wednesday; protesters show up, too.


g. Will his weight actually help him?

h. Newsmax is leery of his Hollywood, Silicon Valley love. 

i. Capital idea! Mayor Bloomberg as Christie's "weight loss life coach."

j. Marc Ambinder: Christie isn't too fat to be president. 

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade Excellence in Commentary to Leonard Pitts Jr. for "Chris Christie slim down? Fat Chance."





Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R)

a. The gulp.

b. That water won't sink him, even though CNN wonders if it will. Fox News reports on CNN's tease

c. He skillfully navigates fallout from his gulp.

d. Conan mocks it; so does Stewart, Chris Matthews calls it "primitive", Morning Joe muses.

e. The New Yorker's take on the gulp.

f. His PAC is selling water bottles.

g. Dick Cheney calls Rubio a "first rate asset."

h. Ezra Klein didn't find any new ideas in his speech.

i. Van Jones' take on the response: "Rubio is dangerous for Democrats."

j. Rubio hammers Obama for standing "idly by" in foreign affairs.

k. Time's cover piece on Rubio.

l. Rubio doesn't want to raise the minimum wage. 

m. Paul Mirengoff warns Rubio about being the "front-man" for a Democratic immigration effort.

n. His evolution on immigration.

o. RE: His conservatism.

p. DeMint is proud of him.

q. His Spotify list.

r. Five ways Marco Rubio is not your grandfather's Republican.

s. His net favorable rating is higher than Obama's.

t. Univision staffer calls Rubio a "loser" and "token slave boy"; Erik Wemple slams network.

u. Older Americans pick him over Jeb Bush.

v. David Axelrod on Rubio: "He's doing his politics very deftly right now."

w. Al Cardenas: "He's trying to save us from ourselves."

x. Obama pollster, Joel Benenson: "Marco Rubio has a long way to go."

y. GOP strategist Nicolle Wallace on Rubio: "He's everything we need and more."

z. Praises Pope's decision to step down.

Headline of the Week.

Supports reupping Violence Against Women Act, but not new version.

Josephus Award for Excellence in Reporting to Maggie Haberman for "General GOP consensus: Marco Rubio water flap shall pass."

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade Excellence in Commentary to Chris Cillizza for "Meet Marco Rubio, the new leader of the Republican party."

Rubio on the gulp: "God has a funny way of reminding us we're human."





Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R)

a. Visits Virginia, to help Bob McDonnell sell education reform.  

b. He'll keynote a big GOP event in Missouri this weekend. 


d. PPP poll: Jindal's approval rating falls to 37% in Louisiana.





Kentucky Senator Rand Paul (R)

a. VIDEO, text of his Tea Party State of the Union response; Reasons's Matt Welch calls it "well worth your time."

b. Obama we'll give you a phone; GOP will give you a job.

c. Moves towards the middle on immigration reform.

d. Reason: "The Rand Paul Rorschach Test."

e. Argues for Reagan's "robust but restrained" foreign policy during a major address at Heritage.

f. Robert Kagan rips it; The Washington Times is a bit more favorable.

g. Dana Milbank: Apple doesn't fall far from the tree, after all.

h. How he got Reagan wrong.

i. Introduces an "Audit The Fed bill" (not an Audi the Fed).

j. Explains his decision to give a Tea Party response to the SOTU.

k. Wants a review process for drone strikes.

l. Promises to hold up confirmation of John Brennan.

m. His dad's supporters are angry at his approach to Chuck Hagel.

n. Wants the sequester to "go through."

o. Calls the drone program "very scary."

p. Paul tells Glenn Back that America needs a "spiritual cleansing."

q. Some deficit humor!

r. What's up with RandPaul.com?

s. Dude, this isn't how you connect with the female vote.

t. Doesn't think Mitch McConnell will face a primary challenge.

u. Is he Rubio's biggest threat?

v. Paul thinks it's "presumptuous" for the U.S. to get involved in Israeli settlements.

w. RE: The big overhype over Rubio and Rand's SOTU responses.

x. Testifies for hemp while wearing a hemp shirt.

y. A Rand and his hair.

Josephus Award for Excellence in Reporting to Philip Giraldi for "A critical look at Rand Paul."

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade Excellence in Commentary to The American Enterprise Institute's Frederick Kagan for "Rand Paul's Side Effects."





New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R)

a. Supports a bill requiring background checks at gun shows; progressives laud the move.

b. Supports compromise legislation on drivers licenses and illegal immigrants; more about the legislation here.





Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D)

a. First New Hampshire poll!! Hillary 63% Biden 10% Cuomo 5%.

b. She's the most popular political figure in America. 


d. A biography, penned by a BBC reporter, of her time as Secretary of State will be released in March.

e. A cheat sheet Hillary infographic.

f. Receives Pentagon's highest civilian award.

g. If Hillary doesn't run, will Rahm run??

Josephus Excellence in Reporting to Ruby Cramer for "Chappaqua is ready for President Hillary Clinton."

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade Excellence in Commentary to Michael Tomasky for "Hillary Clinton: The Most Powerful Woman in American Politics."





New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D)

a. So 2016: In IOWA, left groups are warning him about fracking.

b. He says it doesn't bother him, because "I'm not going to be in Des Moines."

c. NY Post on fracking decision: "The sun will probably burn out before Andrew Cuomo makes up his fracking mind." He says it's too important to rush into a decision.

d. Senate confirms his Supreme Court nominee; Cuomo calls her name a "beautiful sound."

e. Fred Dicker doesn't have that loving feeling anymore.

f. Syracuse's Democratic mayor, Stephanie Miner, unloads on Cuomo over budget.

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade Excellence in Commentary to Sarah Jaffe for "Cuomo says he wants to pass the Reproductive Health Act. But does he really mean it?"



White House photo: Pete Souza


Vice-President Joe Biden (D)

a. He won't run for Pope.

b. Biden meets with......Bradley Cooper.

c. He (Biden; not Bradley Cooper)  was reportedly going to negotiate with Pakistan for the release of the SEALS if they were captured in bin Laden mission.

d. Biden chats with Field & Stream.

e. In Philadelphia, pushes for gun control.

f. Wants help from "legitimate media" on gun control efforts.

g. Will try to sell gun control to rural folks.

h. He wears spectacles to the State of Union address.





Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (R)

a. A Wiki "Elizabeth Warren for President in 2016 movement" is born.

b. Her guest at the SOTU is a gun control advocate.

c. Warren and Sen. Ron Johnson, collaborating on too-big-to-fail?

d. She gets involved in the battle over Richard Cordray.

e. Hires a Waxman, Blumenthal alumn for legislative director.

f. Warren wonders: "Why aren't more bank execs in jail?"

Josephus Excellence in Reporting to Kate Nocera and Patrick Reis for "Elizabeth Warren's quiet plan for the Senate."


The Rest of the Crew

a. "Walker building a case for 2016."

b. Rob Potrman will join a filibuster of Chuck Hagel.

c. Jeb Bush tells a Florida crowd that, as president, he might deploy the tactics of LBJ.

d. Condi stuff: Fox News poll: Americans think Hillary Clinton and Condi Rice would make the best presidents.

e. Martin O'Malley testifies against the death penalty in continued push.

f. Ted Cruz can pretty much get John Cornyn to do whatever he wants.

g. Bob McDonnell cuts state employee hours over ObamaCare costs.

h. Ohio Republicans are hammering John Kasich for his plan to expand Medicaid.