Roger Ailes for President?!

Topping Memeorandum is Mike Allen‘s wild speculation for Politico about a presidential run by Roger Ailes. Friends and associates are encouraging Fox News chief Roger Ailes to jump into the political arena for real by running for president in 2012, top sources tell POLITICO. “Ailes knows how to frame an issue better than anybody, and […]

A Case for Humility in Afghanistan?

Stephen Coll, president of the New America Foundation, has an article in Foreign Policy making the case for more humble objectives in Afghanistan. In the article he criticizes both the counter-insurgency strategy advocated by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of U. S. forces in Afghanistan: To succeed, counterinsurgency approaches require deep, supple, and adaptive understanding […]

Biden Right on AfPak

Ariana Huffington has generated quite a bit of buzz for her unlikely-to-be-taken suggestion that Vice President Biden resign in protest if President Obama sends more troops to Afghanistan.   The cuteness of the suggestion has unfortunately overshadowed the opening paragraph in Holly Bailey and Evan Thomas’ Newsweek piece on “A Day in the Life of Joe […]

77% Oklahoma High School Students Can’t Name 1st President?

A recent survey of Oklahoma public high school students found that the overwhelming majority can’t answer even simple questions about U.S. government and history. A thousand students were given 10 questions drawn from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services item bank. Candidates for U.S. citizenship must answer six questions correctly in order to become citizens. […]

Dick Cheney’s Tell-All Book

Dick Cheney is breaking the mold on how recently-departed vice presidents act. First, he immediately went into attack mode against President Obama. Now, he’s going after President Bush, too. Bart Gelman for WaPo: Cheney’s disappointment with the former president surfaced recently in one of the informal conversations he is holding to discuss the book with […]

Bush on Nation Building

In a sidebar on the Iraq War casualty predictions post, regular commenter Odograph observes, “I think ‘Bush was famously against nation-building’ is a retroactive political claim.” Not at all.  While it’s hard to imagine in hindsight, Candidate Bush ran against nation building and promised a “more humble foreign policy.” Remember, Realist Condi Rice was his […]

Cheney Ordered CIA Concealment

An amusing headline from NYT: “Cheney Is Linked to Concealment of C.I.A. Project.” I mean, obviously, Cheney is going to be linked. He’s everyone’s favorite evil mastermind. The Central Intelligence Agency withheld information about a secret counterterrorism program from Congress for eight years on direct orders from former Vice President Dick Cheney, the agency’s director, […]

Sarah Palin’s Toenails

Huffington Post is catching some grief over a post by Anya Strzemien titled “Sarah Palin’s Toenails: What’s Painted On Them? (PHOTOS, POLL).”  Apparently, the Alaska governor and former Republican vice presidential nominee had some manner of decorative adornment on her nails which were in display in some orange strappy sandals: While some are taking HuffPo […]

Tom Ridge Maryland Resident, Pennsylvanian?

Taegan Goddard passes on word that Tom Ridge, once Pennsylvania’s governor and putatively contemplating running for Arlen Specter’s seat representing that state in the Senate, is a resident of Maryland for the purposes of federal tax and lobbying filings. Do these sort of things matter in statewide elections?   Is anyone otherwise disposed to vote for […]

Joe Biden: Avoid Airplanes!

Rebecca Frankel collects Joe Biden’s Top Five Political Gaffes, which make for an amusing list.  She rightly gives top honors to Biden’s comments on swine flu. In case you missed it (I’m catching up a bit myself), Biden said this Thursday morning: Appearing on NBC’s “Today Show,” Biden said he has already advised his family […]

Ending the Vice Presidency II

Jeremy Lott’s attempted response to my response piece on “Ending the Vice Presidency” was, for some odd reason*, rejected altogether by my commenting system.  Rather than pasting them into the comments of a post buried in the archives, I’ve done it below, with my original in blockquotes, followed by his retort in boldface, followed by […]

Ending the Vice Presidency

Sunday’s WaPo put together a collection of half-baked ideas by smart folks, designed to generate controversy and discussion more so than shed serious light on policy ideas.  Thomas Ricks’ suggestion to close the service academies and war colleges got the most attention, overshadowing the abject silliness of Jeremy Lott’s column advocating doing away with the […]

Lieberman as McCain’s Running Mate

Ben Smith quotes lawyer A.B. Culvahouse explaining legal obstacles to Joe Lieberman’s having been John McCain’s running mate. “Five states have sore loser statutes … [making] it very difficult for someone who’s not a member of the Republican Party to become the vice presidential nominee if they only switch parties to become a Republican shortly […]

Biden Dog Breeder: ‘It’s Been Horrific Since December’

Glenn Reynolds points to a story in a local Chester County, PA paper titled “Breeder Regrets Dog Sale to Biden.”  I clicked the link, expecting to find a story about Biden neglecting the pooch because he’s too busy doing whatever it is that vice presidents do. Instead, it’s a tale of what a royal pain […]

Biden on ‘Global War on Terror’ – Video

Townhall’s Greg Hengler seems pleased to have caught Vice President Biden in a contradiction of the Obama administration’s new verbal policy eschewing the phrase “Global War on Terror.”  Hengler quips, “Maybe Biden just forgot the phrase ‘Overseas Contingency Operation.’” Others reacting to this and aggregated at memeorandum seem to have watched said video and come […]

Biden Drops F-Bomb on Former Colleagues

The string of U.S. vice presidents caught saying the F-word on Capitol Hill now stands at two: Joe Biden dropped a big F-bomb into a live mic at an event on Friday afternoon. “Gimme a f–ing break,” the vice president said after a former Senate colleague referred to him as “Mr. Vice President.” Biden was […]

Jack Kemp Has Cancer

UPDATE 2 May 2009: Sad news. Jack Kemp Dead at 73 Jack Kemp has been diagnosed with cancer. The office of Jack Kemp says the former housing secretary, congressman and Buffalo Bills quarterback has been diagnosed with cancer.   A statement issued in Buffalo, N.Y., says Kemp is undergoing tests to assess the origin of the […]

Jay Carney Leaves Time for Joe Biden

Jay Carney, Washington bureau chief for Time magazine since 2005, is leaving the magazine to become Joe Biden’s communications director.  Mark Halperin broke the news with a one-liner but The Hill’s Blog Briefing Room has the closest thing to a detailed report: Time magazine Washington Bureau Chief Jay Carney has left that position, reportedly to […]

Palin Dragging McCain Down?

A NYT/CBS poll shows that a strong majority of voters believe Sarah Palin is unqualified for the vice presidency and a third saying this would affect their vote: All told, 59 percent of voters surveyed said Ms. Palin was not prepared for the job, up nine percentage points since the beginning of the month. Nearly […]

Palin Most Qualified Recent VP Nominee

John McCain is getting some guff for his assertion on the Don Imus show that Sarah Palin is “the most qualified of anyone recently who has run for vice president to tell you the truth.”  And, no, not for the syntax but the point itself. Steve Benen is incredulous: Dick Cheney, Joe Lieberman, Al Gore, […]

Palins Mistakes Fans for Protestors

John McCain might be old but it’s his young running mate who apparently needs a hearing aid: Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin mistook some of her own fans for hecklers Monday at a rally that drew thousands. A massive crowd of at least 20,000 spread across the parking lot of Richmond International Raceway, and […]

Sarah Palin, Ignoramus

Several commentators have objected to my characterization of Sarah Palin as an”ignoramus” in the post below. I’m simply using the term in its precise meaning as “an extremely ignorant person.” The dictionary definition of ignorant: 1.    lacking in knowledge or training; unlearned: an ignorant man. 2.    lacking knowledge or information as to a particular subject […]

SNL Parodies VP Debates (Video)

“Saturday Night Live” parodied the debate between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin, getting in good zingers against both. It’s starting to feel like Tina Fey is running for vice president. Fey again returned to “Saturday Night Live” to play Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin as the sketch comedy show continued to pull out all […]

Biden’s Son Headed to Iraq

We’ve known for some time that CPT Beau Biden, son of VP nominee Joe, is headed off to Iraq. Dad sent them off with a farewell address today: Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden told his son and other Delaware National Guard troops on Friday that his heart was “full of love and pride” as […]

VP Debate: Afghanistan Surge?

One of the interesting points of contention in last night’s vice presidential debate between Delaware Senator Joe Biden and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin was on the topic of whether an Iraq-style surge would work in Afghanistan.   Earlier in the day, Army General David McKiernan (or, as he’s sometimes known in Alaska, “McClellan”), commander of NATO’s […]

Palin’s Debate ‘Gaffes’

Matt Yglesias snarks, A lot of people are wondering who the “McClellan” character was that Sarah Palin was referring to, with many guessing that she’s been consulting long-dead failed Civil War General George McClellan for advice on Afghanistan. But another colleague suggested that she’s mentally combined General McKiernan, the commanding officer in Afghanistan, and David […]

Abolish the Vice Presidency?

Bruce Ackerman thinks the vice presidency is an anachronism from the political era of the Framers and ought be abolished. For two centuries, presidential nominees have used the office to balance the ticket by naming a running mate from a different region, or one who speaks with a different ideological accent to a specific constituency. […]

Palin Lies About Hearing Biden!

Andrew Sullivan is seeing mendacity in the most innocent places, such as Sarah Palin’s line yesterday that she was looking forward to finally meeting Joe Biden because,  “I’ve been hearing about his Senate speeches since I was in, like, second grade.” Two things: when Palin was in Second Grade, Biden hadn’t been elected to the […]

Gwen Ifill, Pro-Obama Author, Debate Moderator

There’s a minor hubbub brewing over the fact that Gwen Ifill, who will once again moderate the vice presidential debate, is publishing a pro-Obama book shortly after the election, apparently unbeknownst to the McCain-Palin campaign. Questions are being raised about the objectivity of Thursday’s vice presidential debate moderator after news surfaced that she is releasing […]

OTB Radio – Tonight at 7 Eastern

The next episode of OTB Radio, our BlogTalkRadio program, will record and air live tonight from 7-8 Eastern. Dave Schuler will co-host with me tonight. We’ll have as our special guest Megan McArdle, the world’s tallest female econoblogger. We’ll be talking, again, about the mess in the financial markets, the various bailout plans, the presidential […]

Has Palin Out-Qualyed Quayle?

Dan Qualye was, rather unfairly in my view, a national joke.  From very shortly after George H.W. Bush picked a rising star senator from Indiana that few outside his home state had ever heard of to be his vice presidential running mate in 1988, Quayle became the butt of late night comics, “Saturday Night Live,” […]

SNL Parodies Palin, Debates

“Saturday Night Live” is continuing to weigh in heavily on the presidential race, hitting Sarah Palin and John McCain hard in last night’s installment. Tina Fey reprised her role as Sarah Palin on “Saturday Night Live,” again appearing as the Republican vice presidential candidate in an opening sketch. Saturday night’s show — the third of […]

Palin on the Bush Doctrine

Sarah Palin, who has largely been kept away from the press in the week following the Republican convention, finally gave a major interview last night to ABC’s Charlie Gibson, mostly focusing on foreign policy. It’s been the big topic of discussion in the blogosphere overnight and this morning. The Bush Doctrine Palin was asked a […]

Palin’s Speech Reax

Most of the analysis of Sarah Palin’s vice presidential acceptance speech has, predictably, divided on party lines. Republicans tended to love it, thinking it struck the right tone, while Democrats think it was mean-spirited and full of lies. If one reads through the text of the remarks, thereby ignoring the delivery and optics, one sees […]

Experience: Obama v. Palin

Josh Marshall headlines as “Sadly Nuts” a post responding to John McCain’s retort, to questions of Sarah Palin’s qualifications to serve as president, “If they want to go down that route, in all candor, she has far, far more experience than Senator Obama does.” Says Josh, Set aside the bravado. Can McCain possibly believe that? […]

Sarah Palin – John McCain’s VP Choice

BREAKING: Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has been tabbed as John McCain’s vice presidential running mate, CNBC reports. ________________________ Earlier this morning, all signs were pointing to Tim Pawlenty as John McCain’s running mate.  He even had issued the requisite “I’m not the guy” statement. His name has been on the short list all along and, […]

Why Not Hillary?

The GOP has come up with a clever yet bizarre line of attack on Barack Obama: How dare he pass over Hillary Clinton for Joe Biden as his running mate? As WSJ’s Amy Chozick reported last night, Team McCain debuted a new spot, “Passed Over,” at 3 a.m.: The timing is a reference to Hillary […]

Barack America and His Trusty Sidekick

Barack Obama’s vacation apparently wasn’t quite long enough, as he and his newly minted running mate had a gaffe-filled coming out party. When introducing his running mate, Obama said, “So let me introduce to you the next president – the next vice president of the US of America, Joe Biden.” And then when it was […]

Obama Taps Joe Biden for VP – Storybook, Man

Barack Obama has listened to David Brooks and chosen Joe Biden as his running mate. How the Press is Covering the News CNN: “Obama chooses Sen. Joe Biden to be running mate” Sen. Barack Obama has selected Delaware Sen. Joe Biden as his running mate, according to his official Web site and a text message […]

VP Speculation Heats Up

All indications are that Barack Obama has made his choice for running mate and will announce it today. Through some combination of clever public manipulation to throw people off the scent and wishful thinking on the part of those with a stake in the outcome, the guesses as to who it’ll be are all over […]

McCain Takes the Lead?

John McCain has taken the lead for the first time in the RealClearPolitics Electoral College projection, with a 274 to 264 margin, when tossups are included.  (Barack Obama’s still up 228 to 178 in states with solid margins.) Now, this is one projection. still has Virginia tied and therefore has the race at Obama […]

Biden: “I’m Not the Guy”

UPDATE: 23 AUG 08 – Turns out, Biden is the guy after all: Obama Taps Joe Biden for VP – Storybook, Man Joe Biden, who has emerged as the favorite to be named as Barack Obama’s running mate, vows, “I’m not the guy.” Whether this means that 1) he’s actually not the guy or 2) […]

Obama’s VP: Biden or Bayh?

Barack Obama’s vice president may have a last name that starts with “Bye,” CNN’s Alexander Mooney reports. The two senators widely believed to be at the top of Barack Obama’s shortlist for VP have been given prime-time speaking slots at the Democratic convention Wednesday night — the very same night the vice presidential candidate is […]

Eric Cantor for VP?

Eric Cantor, a fourth-term Congressman from Richmond, Virginia, is being strongly considered as John McCain’s running mate, Mike Allen and Jonathan Martin report for Politico. Cantor, 45, has provided records to the running-mate search team of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the adviser said. With a Southern lilt and that belies his talent for raw politics, […]

Apples, Oranges, and Vice Presidents

Nate Silver compares Mitt Romney’s 2008 primary fundraising with that of George W. Bush in 2004 and concludes that Romney would be an asset, were he added to the Republican ticket as vice presidential nominee, in the Mormon Belt but a liability in the Deep South. The problem with this is at least twofold. First, […]

What would be the boldest vice presidential choice John McCain and Barack Obama could make? (Updated)

The gang behind Newsweek‘s Ruckus blog is asking its contributors to answer the following question: “What would be the boldest vice presidential choice John McCain and Barack Obama could make?” If we leave aside the silly and absurd, for McCain, the answer seems obvious:  Joe Lieberman. This would double down on his foreign policy experience […]

Newt: No Boring White Guys

Newt Gingrich is counseling the GOP not to pick any more boring white guys: With speculation mounting that John McCain may be close to choosing his running mate, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on Wednesday went public with his recommendations for the GOP vice presidential nominee. First choice: Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. Runner-up: Alasaka Gov. […]

John Edwards – Rielle Hunter Scandal Back

John Edwards has been spotted back together with his alleged mistress, Rielle Hunter. The married ex-senator from North Carolina – whose wife Elizabeth continues to battle cancer — met with his mistress, blonde divorcee Rielle Hunter, at the Beverly Hilton on Monday night July 21 – and the NATIONAL ENQUIRER was there! He didn’t leave […]

McCain to Pick VP This Week: Romney or Jindal?

Bob Novak is reporting that John McCain is planning to announce his vice presidential choice this week, presumably in an attempt to grab the press spotlight back while Barack Obama is being feted overseas. He notes that “Mitt Romney has led the speculation recently.” Meanwhile, Chris Cillizza says “McCain will huddle with vice presidential aspirant […]

Presidential Succession Crisis?

Bruce Ackerman has read a novel and heard unsubstantiated rumors and from these concocted a Constitutional crisis which he’s convinced the folks at Slate to publish. New Yorker writer Jane Mayer’s new book, The Dark Side, opens with a shocker. Apparently sometime in the 1980s, President Ronald Reagan issued a “secret executive order” that in […]

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