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Filed Under Rate that Ad on Mar 31 

With Bush ’41 warbling Kenny Rogers as he endorsed Mitt Romney, the heavy hitters in the GOP are making it known that they feel the race is over.

In a week that saw Mitt pick up nods from Jeb Bush, his dad, and Marco Rubio, he will add Rep. Paul Ryan to the list today.

Like it or not kiddies, Williard Mitt Romney is all but officially the Republican nominee that will challenge President Barack Obama this fall.

There, I said it.

I didn’t say you had to like it, and based on the comments over the last six months or so, many of you don’t.

But since it is practically a moot point, let’s get along with some fun speculation – namely, who is Mitt going to pick as his running mate?

Politico wonders if Newt Gingrich is destroying his political legacy, as he refuses to leave a race everyone knows he can’t win.

On Sunday, the US will become first in the world in yet another category though this time it is the dubious distinction of having the highest corporate income tax in the world.

As race is once again a topic in our country, Jonah Goldberg wonders why the New York Times, Reuters, and other media outlets refer to George Zimmerman as “White Hispanic” but have never referred to Barack Obama as the “White African-American President”, despite each having one white parent.

Drudge is reporting that Rubio is officially endorsing Romney. Good for Mitt, but I’ll say what I said about Jeb Bush. Why wait until the nomination is essentially decided?

Romney has now picked up endorsements from moderates, conservatives and tea party leaders. Will this sway any holdout ABRbots?

Is there trouble in paradise for Obamacare? The most contentious part of the health care plan, the individual mandate, was expected to be treated like a pinata by the conservative member of the Supreme Court, but even one of Barack Obama’s own nominees, Sonia Sotomayor has some questions about it’s justification:

Justice Sotomayor, an Obama appointee, appeared skeptical of solicitor general Verrilli’s claims that the individual mandate is not based upon the idea that the government can force people into commerce and that there is no limit on its power to do so. The justice and solicitor general were very much at odds on this point.

Is Obamacare on the ropes?

***Update – The L.A. Times is reporting that the Supreme Court may be poised to strike down the entire Health Care bill.

Tuesday open thread

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Filed Under Open Thread on Mar 27 

Today Politico reports that Karl Rove’s fight club is gearing back up for 2012 and is reminding members of the rules.

RCP writes that Santorum’s willingness to fight to the end comes with risks.

WS interviews Romney and dubs him “risk-averse.”

Finally, some guy writing in the Deseret News goes behind the scenes of a Fox News appearance.

Rick Santorum won the Louisiana primary over the weekend with 49% of the vote. Even with this win Romney’s delegates continue to add to his total. Santorum is telling his supporters not to worry. Romney’s lead is a bunch of fuzzy math:

“There’s a lot of bad math there that doesn’t reflect the reality of what’s going on on the ground. And so I think we’re in much, much better shape than what the numbers that are out there suggest,” Santorum said in an interview.

In other news, Obamacare finally has its day in court.

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Filed Under Rate that Ad on Mar 25 

Clever marketing, undignified vulgarity from the most visible man in America, or something else entirely?

This shirt is being sold by the Barack Obama campaign in obvious reference to Joe Biden’s open microphone gaffe.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Does commenter Whodat’s assessment resonate with you?

I will post again on the Friday open thread whenever management gets out of bed and gets it up, but I want to be the first staunchly ABR to condemn Santorum’s statements of Thursday, in effect saying if not he, might as well vote for Obama. I can sort of understand the bitterness of some supporters of candidates when they say that – usually we hear it from the Paulites – but, to have a major, main stream candidate say it is shocking. And, most disappointing. So, I disembark from the last ABR train. . . .

Today is the second anniversary of the “Affordable Healthcare Act”. However, there are no celebrations or recognition events planned for President Obama’s biggest accomplishment. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court will take on the lawsuit brought by 26 of the 50 states against Obamacare next week.

Rick Santorum has come out with an endorsement of Barack Obama, if the other choice is Mitt Romney. Is this the beginning of the end? Are the campaign pressures getting to Rick or is he right?

While there is more of a sense of inevitability in Mitt Romney’s nomination now that ever before–Rick Santorum must win 70% of the remaining delegates to win the nomination–it seems every time Romney does wins big, he or his campaign follows up with a another gaffe.

Meanwhile, Rush Limbaugh argued yesterday that “the conservative alternative to Romney might be Romney himself”. His argument was based on a perceived shift in message from Romney. However, it may also be in preparation for what is likely an inevitable nomination at this point.

Finally, Political Calculations presents an interesting case on the failure of a Pigovian tax, which would likely make Romney economic adviser and Pigou Club founder N. Gregory Mankiw cringe.

Check out this video.

The hottest ticket in town these days is for the June title game at Supreme Stadium. That’s when the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”) is taken up by the nation’s highest court. Word has it that seats in the Court’s gallery are going fast.

To most people, Obamacare has been a puzzle on many levels for the entirety of its existence. It has been vaguely described as “Universal health Care,” with the implication that the US Government is henceforth going to provide “free” healthcare to everyone, for their entire lives.
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Mitt Romney won the Illinois primary by a double-digit margin, another up for him on the roller coaster ride that is his 2012 campaign for the Republican nomination. Romney thinks he is close, going after Barack Obama in his victory speech, and echoing that in an email to his supporters:

“Tonight’s win means we are that much closer to securing the nomination, uniting our party, and taking on President Obama,” the Republican front-runner wrote in a campaign email sent late Tuesday.

He urged the party to fall in line behind his bid, saying, “We are almost there.”

This was a no-doubt-about-it victory in a rust belt state, unlike the squeakers he won in Michigan and Ohio, and it will attract more of what drives the Romney machine – money.

As far as the other candidates go, Santorum will soldier on, and will probably win a few more races. Ron Paul did what Ron Paul does in states where he doesn’t have a high level of appeal, namely eight to twelve percent. Newt Gingrich bottomed out yesterday, finishing dead last on the heels of news his campaign has more debt than cash on hand and grumblings from peripheral staffers that bills aren’t getting paid.

No it is not over, but the fat lady is tuning up in the green room.

The race has already been called for Romney with just 3% in. They’re currently running Romney 54%, Santorum 28%, Paul 10% and Newt 7%. Hard to imagine Romney maintaining that margin all night, but it’s still likely to be a healthy double digit win. What does it mean?

Tuesday open thread

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Filed Under Open Thread on Mar 20 

Take the stage, Illinois. It’s your turn to impact the GOP 2012 race. Romney’s lead in the polls ranges from 6 to 15 points and Politico gives us 5 things to watch as the polls close tonight.

Politico also reports on Gingrich’s twin campaigns. It’s a spot-on look inside the state of Newt.

Also of interest, Stephen Hayes of the Weekly Standard has a piece on the odds of a brokered convention. You can count this junkie in for a road trip to Tampa if the dream becomes a reality.

Finally, Santorum said yesterday that he doesn’t care about the unemployment rate. Romney zinged him almost immediately and Santorum’s camp complained that Romney was taking the comment out of context. Isn’t that a curious position when Santorum hit Romney repeatedly for telling CNN he didn’t care about poor people? Do these gaffes really matter in the long run?

Mitt Romney inched closer to the nomination this weekend by winning the GOP primary in the Spanish speaking country island of Puerto Rico.

Politico: Iraq is a testament to Obama leadership.
ABC: Sen. Scott Brown jabs at Santorum for finally using protection.
DC Examiner: ‘Only’ 20 million may lose health insurance coverage.
ESPN: Obama is winning PD’s March Madness.

Interesting video presentation by Dinesh D’Souza, the well-known author and academic. He goes into detail in his new movie/documentary that we know very little about Obama as an individual, his personal background, his actual schooling history, his relationships, etc.

May be factual, may not be.

One thing is certain: No amount of personal doubt and “dirt” thrown on Obama will have even the slightest negative effect on Obama in this election. If anything, attacks and questions about his personal background will redound strongly to the president’s favor. Very strongly.
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Weekend open thread

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Filed Under Open Thread on Mar 16 

Today Byron York asks why the islands play such a key role in the GOP race. Good question.

Obama has released a 17-minute documentary that plays like a combination between a Disney movie and a horror film made by Ken Burns. Have you watched it? Will you?

Politico reports ten things you didn’t know about Bill Maher. Also reported, the ten things you don’t care to know about Bill Maher.

The Republican presidential nomination process is more than half complete, meaning Ron Paul’s supporters must face a hard fact. Their candidate won’t be the nominee. His delegate count is one-tenth that of Mitt Romney and only Maine has awarded Paul double-digit delegates. Even when Paul wins, he loses.

That’s not to say Rep. Paul in inconsequential; he’s not. But he has as much chance of winning the Republican nomination as do the Pittsburgh Pirates of winning the 2012 World Series. So, where will Paul’s supporters turn in the general election? Believe it or not, the Obama campaign believes it can court alienated Paulites, citing common ground on budget issues and foreign policy. Read more