March, 2012

Giffords War Chest Prompts Talk of Comeback

Two months after stepping down from Congress, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) “appears to be holding on to much of the nearly $1 million left in her campaign account, in order to leave the door open for a potential run for the House or the Senate in the next campaign cycle,” the New York Times reports.

“Ms. Giffords is still going through intensive rehabilitation in Houston, and her supporters say they are careful not to set expectations too high. Still, they openly speak of the possibility of her running for the Senate seat now held by John McCain or perhaps running for the House again.”

Muslim Brotherhood Makes Move in Egypt

The Muslim Brotherhood “nominated its chief strategist and financier Khairat el-Shater on Saturday as its candidate to become Egypt’s first president since Hosni Mubarak, breaking a pledge not to seek the top office and a monopoly on power,” the New York Times reports.

“Because of the Brotherhood’s unrivaled grass-roots organization and popular appeal, Mr. Shater, 62, a multimillionaire business tycoon who was a political prisoner until just a year ago, immediately became a presidential front-runner.”

Reuters: “The move will worry liberals and others who fret about the rising influence of Islamists after they swept parliament and now dominate an assembly writing the new constitution.”

Quote of the Day

“I think the mistakes made in 2008 will have a big effect, as they should in 2012. The 2008 process was evaluated almost entirely through a political prism.”

— GOP strategist Steve Schmidt, quoted by the Washington Post, who oversaw Sen. John McCain’s selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate.

Wisconsin Republicans To Run Fake Primary Challengers

Joshua Spivak reports the four Democratic state Senate hopefuls in Wisconsin will all face “fake” primary opponents. Republican leaders confirmed the tactic which they also used in last year’s recall races.

“The goal is to push the election so it is on the same day as the Walker recall — otherwise, the Democrats may have had a serious advantage in those races (as their votes would be more likely to come out for the Gubernatorial primary vote).”

Endorsing the Winner

As well-regarded Republicans continue to line up behind Mitt Romney–including George H.W. Bush, Marco Rubio, and Paul Ryan — Adam Sorensen underlines why there has been a sudden rush to back the likely nominee.

“You might read these statements as examples of lukewarm sentiment for the candidate — Dave Weigel compares them to Ted Kennedy’s swooning endorsement of Obama at the height of the epic 2008 Democratic primary — but I’m not sure that’s entirely fair. There is a real and legitimate concern among Republicans that in recent years, their party has at times lost focus on winning general elections (see Christine O’Donnell). The Establishment endorsers’ target audience — Republicans who want to see the primary play out a bit longer — is not one that needs to be swept off its feet… The goal is to show that Romney has already won it, and that it’s time to move on to taking down Obama.”

Extra Bonus Quote of the Day

“It’s been tried in our history and it hasn’t worked. It
didn’t work when we tried it in the decade before the Great Depression.
It didn’t work when we tried it in the last decade. We just tried this.
What they’re peddling has been tried — it did not work!”

— President Obama, in a fiery campaign speech in Vermont, referring to Republican proposals as “you’re on your own economics.”

A Hands-On Candidate

After congressional candidate Matt Doheny (R) insisted that photos of him kissing a campaign consultant were “out of context,” the New York Post provides some context.

Doheny was “recently spotted partying in a DC bar with two women, groping both and kissing one. Neither one was his fiancée.”

And they have it on video.

“The video and photo didn’t come as a shock to some GOP insiders. They
described the former Wall Street investor as a party-hearty kind of guy.”

Recall Elections Ordered in Wisconsin

Wisconsin elections officials ordered a set of historic recall elections, making Gov. Scott Walker (R) the third governor in the nation to face a recall and Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (R) the first lieutenant governor to face one, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Recall elections for four Republican state senators were also ordered.

Primaries will be held May 8 and general elections June 5. For races that do not require primaries, the general elections will be May 8.

Just two other governors have faced recall elections.  Both were defeated.