Infected Worldmind

Politics and Culture. A Tonic.

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Posts tagged "2012 Presidential Campaign"

I’ve heard about the Obama campaign’s response to Gov. Romney’s infamous ‘47 Percenters’ comments, but this is the first time I’ve seen the video. It’s just damning. They are who we thought they were.

Obama’s response, via Ta-Nehisi Coates, who reminds us that in the eyes of Mitt Romney, we’re all welfare queens now. Demagoguery as progress?

Ezra Klein’s Wonkblog is all over this controversy, explaining who receives government benefits, breaking down the the ‘47 percent’ and why they pay no taxes, and how paying no federal income taxes helps the poor get a toehold in the working world and why Romney’s comments are not a gaffe, but central to his economic agenda.

Read the original report from Mother Jones here, and watch the leaked video here.

[T]oday’s Romney insists there is no reason to question the distribution of wealth in America except for envy of the rich – did his rich dad question the distribution of wealth in America out of envy for the rich? – and that it was a subject only appropriate for discussion in “quiet rooms.” (His dad didn’t talk about it in quiet rooms; he talked about it at a Sunday worship service at the 1972 Republican convention, praying, “Help us to help those who need help.”) Even if Mitt Romney is not the most right-wing candidate for the nomination, when he wins it, in a Republican Party becoming more extreme with every passing day, he may still be – because the party won’t have it any other way – the most right-wing nominee in the history of the country.

It wasn’t that way at first, of course. Four years ago, Romney announced his presidential candidacy — anyone remember? — in front of a state-of-the-art hybrid car. Positioning himself as an ecology president, he boasted about his father – “The Rambler automobile he championed was the first American car designed and marketed for economy and mileage” – and pointed to the car next beside him as “the first giant step away from our reliance on the gasoline engine.”

Now, of course, he’s a global warming denier. Little Willard is all grown up now. He’s his own man. And he’s the the likely Republican nominee. Which now means he’s Wall Street’s man. And Focus on the Family’s, and the Tea Party’s, and Grover Norquist’s too.

Rick Perlstein, on the lessons Mitt Romney learned from Richard Nixon.
Most of the issues dominating the 2012 election make sense. Theres the economy, of course. The budget deficit. Medicare. Obamacare. But click through the videos section of Mitt Romneys Web site and youll see something odd: His campaign is running more ads about welfare than just about any other issue. Of the 12 most recent ads posted, five are about welfare…In modern politics, however, when a campaign begins doubling and tripling down on an unusual line of attack, its because it has reams of data showing the attack is working. Whats worrying is why this ad might be working…Romneys welfare ads are not racist. But the evidence suggests that they work particularly well if the viewer is racist, or at least racially resentful. And these are the ads that are working so unexpectedly well that welfare is now the spine of Romneys 2012 on-air message in the battleground states.
Ezra Klein on Romney’s reliance on so-called racial politics in the 2012 campaign. Klein and Evan Soltas have a great round-up of pieces on the role that race is playing in this campaign cycle in today’s Wonkbook.
For President Obama, the winning formula can be reduced to 80/40. In 2008, Obama won a combined 80 percent of the votes of all minority voters, including not only African-Americans but also Hispanics, Asians, and others. If Obama matches that performance this year, he can squeak out a national majority with support from about 40 percent of whites so long as minorities at least match the 26 percent of the vote they cast last time. Obama’s strategic equation defines Mitt Romney’s formula: 61/74. Romney’s camp is focused intently on capturing at least 61 percent of white voters. That would provide him a slim national majority so long as whites constitute at least 74 percent of the vote, as they did last time, and Obama doesn’t improve on his 80 percent showing with minorities.
Ronald Brownstein gives us a sobering look at the 2012 race through the prism of race, American style, where there are white people and the rest of us. There’s something depressingly invevitable about this, but it’s not entirely unexpected. This is how both campaigns (particularly that of a former Governor) are analyzing the race.