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Posts Tagged ‘Republikanska presidentkandidater’

KONFLIKT | I en intervju i Esquire ger f.d. presidenten Bill Clinton sin syn på Barack Obama, Mitt Romney och de republikanska presidentkandidaterna.

Charles P. Pierce och Mark Warren intervjuade Clinton. Först Clinton om varför det politiska klimatet har blivit alltmer konfrontativt.

One of the real dilemmas we have in our country and around the world is that what works in politics is organization and conflict. That is, drawing the sharp distinctions. But in real life, what works is networks and cooperation. And we need victories in real life, so we’ve got to get back to networks and cooperation, not just conflict. But politics has always been about conflict, and in the coverage of politics, information dissemination tends to be organized around conflict as well. It is extremely personal now, and you see in these primaries that the more people agree with each other on the issues, the more desperate they are to make the clear distinctions necessary to win, so the deeper the knife goes in.

[…]

ESQUIRE: What forces created such a narrow field of Republican contenders for the presidency in this election cycle?

CLINTON: Well, there are all kinds of reasons why someone like Mitch Daniels or Haley Barbour or Chris Christie wind up not being candidates. I think governors in general — maybe not some of the new Republican crop that got in trouble quickly, but that generally, the conservative Republican governors tend to be more oriented toward trying to work with Democrats and getting things done. But it’s been building up since the mid-seventies — this rage against the government — and frankly, on at least two occasions they were richly rewarded for the just-say-no thing. They won the Congress in 1994 and 2010 by just being against everything and saying the sky was gonna fall. And since the people didn’t feel better by the time of the election, it worked. One of the reasons people stay with a strategy like that is it works. And then when it seems not to be working, they tend to change.

Of course, public opinion has a lot to do with this. That means people should really take care when they vote, and pay more attention to what people say they’re going to do — instead of just how they feel about how things are going.

With someone like Newt Gingrich, it’s a different kettle of fish. Because as a private citizen he was for certain important health-care reforms and believed in climate change and believed there had to be a strong reaction to it. And now he’s just like Romney. Neither one of them can say what they believe to be true and get nominated. Romney’s still trying to figure out what he did as governor of Massachusetts and still appeal to this driving vituperative energy.

Övrigt: På hemsidan finns en redigerad version av en intervju som gjordes med expresident Clinton den 30 november och 16 december 2011. Hela intervjun var införd i februarinumret (2012) av Esquire. På hemsidan kan man också se gamla tidskriftsomslag från 1933-2011.

Annonser

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KAVALKAD |  Vem minns längre 2011? Med ”The Dumbest People, Events and Things 2011” hjälper Mad oss återuppliva några av händelserna i USA.

Satirtidskriften bjuder bl.a. på Barack Obama och kongressens ledamöter som levande döda zombies i skuggan av skuldkrisen. (The Walking Debt: They Need Braaaaaains!)

Här är också Arnold Schwarzenegger. Under fjorton år lyckades han dölja det faktum att han fått en son med hushållerskan. (”Arnold Schtups His Housekeeper: The Last Action-on-the-side Hero”).

Här är tre, numera f.d. republikanska presidentkandidater: Donald Trump (”Trump Says Obama Not American: The Born Identity”), Michele Bachmann (”Michele Bachmann Speaks: A Broken Facts Machine”) och Herman Cain (”The Pee-Wee Herman Cain Show”).

Naturligtvis hör också avlyssningsskandalen kring Rupert Murdoch hit (”News Corp Hacks Phones: Getting Away With Murdoch”).

Övrigt: Tidskriftsomslaget och ”The 20 Dumbest …” är hämtat från nr 513, februari 2012. Mad finns på madmag.com.

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USA  | Under tisdagen var det Colorado, Minnesota och Missouri som stod i fokus för de republikanska presidentkandidaterna.

Men resultaten kommer inte att vara bindande eftersom delegaterna utses först senare i år.

Även om det finns intressanta aspekter att hålla koll på blir resultaten mest en värdemätare över kandidaternas förutsättningar framöver.

Medan resultaten dröjer kan det istället vara dags för lite kuriosa.

Här är tre favoriter från “15 Fun Facts About the Politics of Minnesota, Colorado, and Missouri”. (Av Ben Jacobs på The Daily Beast).

Colorado:

The most notable candidate in Colorado political history did not come from either of the two parties and was not elected to office. But his campaign captured the imagination of generations of Americans. Author Hunter S. Thompson unsuccessfully ran for sheriff of Pitkin County in 1971 as the candidate of the Freak Power Party. Thompson’s platform pledged to rename Aspen “Fat City” and to rip up the asphalt from streets and let grass grow there instead. As his contribution to public safety, Thompson, famous for his penchant for controlled substances, promised not to use mescaline while on duty. Unsurprisingly, he lost, but the author used his experience as a candidate to help fuel his future exploits in “gonzo journalism,” including his coverage of the 1972 presidential campaign in Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail.

Minnesota:

Minnesota does not have a Democratic Party. This is not to say that there are no liberals in the state of Hubert Humphrey and Paul Wellstone, but their party goes by a different name. In Minnesota, they are members of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party, or DFL for short. This nomenclature is the result of a merger between the Democratic Party and the Farmer-Labor Party, a progressive agrarian party of the 1920s and ’30s. Although the Farmer-Labor Party achieved great success in the state, electing a number of statewide candidates, including the rabble-rousing Gov. Floyd Olsen, the party eventually merged with the Democrats after accepting that while Minnesota may have space for a thousand lakes, there wasn’t room for two left-of-center political parties.

Missouri:

Like Minnesota, the Show-Me State has experienced a tragic plane crash on the eve of an election. In 2000, during a razor-tight Senate race against incumbent John Ashcroft, Gov. Mel Carnahan died in a plane crash weeks before the election. It was too late to take his name off the ballot, and instead it was allowed to be understood that if he was elected, his widow, Jean, would take his place in Washington. That was exactly what happened on Election Day, when Carnahan won by almost 50,000 votes despite his death. However, Jean would serve only two years in the Senate and would go on to lose the special election for the remainder of her husband’s term in 2002.

Se även:What’s at Stake in Tuesday’s Contests (Not Delegates)” av Michael D. Shear på bloggen The Caucus. Och “Danger Signs for Mitt Romney as Colorado, Minnesota, Missouri Ready Vote” av Howard Kurtz, Newsweek.

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USA | Medan allt fokus är på de republikanska presidentkandidaterna har Barack Obamas kampanjteam sakta men säkert finslipat sin strategi.

Oavsett dåliga opinionssiffror (ca 46 %), höga arbetslöshetssiffror (8,6 %) och en inte alltför imponerande ekonomisk utveckling är det sannolikt Obama som tar hem segern 2012.

Om han vinner kommer det att bero på att han – till skillnad från de republikanska kandidaterna – har en över hela landet vältrimmad organisation, välfylld kampanjkassa och ett stort teknologiskt försprång.

För Newsweek har Andrew Romano intervjuat bl.a. campaign manager Jim Messina och David Axelrod som är Obamas chief political strategist.

Without a primary war to wage, his staff has been able to dedicate the past 10 months exclusively to general-election preparations—a head start not only over 2008 (and previous incumbents) but over a bumper crop of clumsy Republicans who have been too distracted by 2011’s 13 televised debates to bother with old-fashioned chores such as fundraising or field organizing. “We now have people on the ground all across the country who’ve spent four years, five years in our system and know how to do this, who believe in this guy, and who are trained,” Messina told me. “That’s just a huge piece of business. [Mitt] Romney and [Newt] Gingrich don’t have operations on the ground in these states.”

Consider the numbers. In January 2004, George W. Bush’s aides bragged that they’d held a grand total of 52 training sessions around the country for precinct leaders. The Obama campaign, by comparison, held 57 … in a single December week … in a single state, Iowa. Right now, there are more than 200 paid staffers working in Chicago—double Bush’s head count at the beginning of 2004, and more than double Romney’s current total. (Bill Clinton employed only 40 people at this point; the first President Bush was still stuck in the single digits.) Messina has already hired an in-house design crew, an in-house gear team, and in-house tech developers, who are tinkering away on a top-secret application that will track every conversation that every single Obama volunteer has, every door they knock on, every action they take.

[…]

The plan for 2012, according to Axelrod, is to tout the president’s achievements while also recognizing that “people are less interested in a tote sheet of what has been accomplished” than in “how we, and alternatively how the other side, would approach the larger economic challenges” facing the middle class. Translation: voters should expect (1) more talk about the future than the painful recent past, and (2) a merciless populist assault on the Republican nominee’s alleged belief in “trickle-down social Darwinism”—an “every man for himself” ideology designed, according to Axelrod, to ensure that “whoever starts with the advantages will likely multiply them, while everybody else pedals faster and faster just to keep up.” Think No We Shouldn’t (elect a Republican) instead of Yes We Can. “You’re looking at a lot more competitive situation, and that’s what we’re preparing for,” Axelrod admits. “It’s going to be a very vigorous debate.”

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KAMPANJ | När det såg som mörkast ut för Gingrichs kampanj räddades han av Elefanten Ellis – huvudpersonen i fruns barnbok Sweet Land of Liberty.

Denna lustiga detalj kan man läsa i Matt Bais intressanta personporträtt i The New York Times.

“One of the things that actually saved us,” Gingrich told me, “in addition to Callista’s stubbornness, was Ellis the elephant.”

I checked to make sure I heard this right. […] In what way had a fictional elephant salvaged his presidential campaign?

“Happy, positive,” Gingrich replied, searching for the right words. “Interesting. Creative. It gave you an oasis psychologically. Literally, Ellis was sort of a ray of light.”

Men Newt Gingrichs topposition bland de republikanska presidentkandidaterna beror nog mer på hans starka insatser under de många tv-debatterna.

Han har gjort en dygd av att vara den intellektuella kandidaten som inte bryr sig om sådana världsliga ting som kampanjfinansiering och organisering.

Gingrich says now, in what may be a characteristic bit of revisionist history, that it was clear early on that he needed to break free of his highly paid and conventional consultants, and that he and his wife, Callista, actually took their much-maligned Greek vacation last June — a pleasure trip in the middle of what was supposed to be his ramp-up as a candidate — in order to provoke a confrontation with the campaign’s leadership. (Gingrich later added that he really needed to see the Greek fiscal crisis up close.) If so, it worked, because the entire senior team quit en masse when he got back. Thus cast out into the campaign wilderness, Gingrich persevered through the summer and early fall, despite the mockery of those who considered it a sad final act. A few times, he now admits, he considered quitting.

[…]

Gingrich’s strategy is clear enough. He wants to be the last guy standing against Romney after the first few contests — something that could be achieved just by finishing strongly enough in the early states to garner some attention while, one by one, his rivals run out of reasons to stay in the race. Gingrich knows he isn’t any social conservative’s dream, and maybe the Tea Party types are put off by his personal life or his ties to big business. But he’s betting that they like Romney even less and will rally behind him in a two-man race. “This is the classic fight between the moderate Republicans who try to get to the middle by compromise and the conservative Republicans who try to create a new middle by driving the left away,” he said.

This seemed as plausible as any other theory of the moment, although the last few days in Iowa had left me somewhat dubious. Several of the voters I met at Gingrich’s events seemed to be reluctantly getting their heads around voting for Romney. It wasn’t that they appreciated his less-confrontational brand of Republicanism any more than they did six months ago. It was that they had heard out all the other candidates, and they were starting to think that Romney was the only guy who could actually get himself elected.

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MITT ROMNEY har skrivit ett öppet brev till president Barack Obama i samband med sitt första köp av tv-reklam.

Han kallar presidentens ekonomiska politik för ett ”misslyckande”. Reklamen började visas i New Hampshire samma dag som Obama anlände till delstaten.

I brevet förtydligar han budskapet:

I will be blunt. Your policies have failed. It is bad enough that they have fallen short even by the standards your own administration set for itself. But things are much worse than that. Far from bringing the crisis to an end, your policies have actively hindered economic recovery. In some cases, they were the exact opposite of what our government should have been doing.

Budskapet i sig är inte nytt. Hans strategi har hela tiden varit att koncentrera sig på Obama medan övriga republikanska presidentkandidater har varit tvungna att attackera varandra för att få uppmärksamhet.

Vad som är nytt är att man hitintills har varit sparsamma när det gäller reklamutlägg. Denna reklamkampanj har kostat 134.000 dollar.

Romney har tydligen lagt i en ny växel.

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EN konsekvent konservativ politiker. Det är så Michele Bachmann framställer sig i tv-reklamen. Och övriga republikanska presidentkandidater? Not so much.

På Bachmanns nya kampanjsajt – NoSurprises2012.com – kan man läsa följande:

“With Michele Bachmann, there are no policy flip-flops. There’s no need to compromise on one of the issues that matters to you. She means what she says, and she says what she means.”

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