Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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May 4, 2011

WEDNESDAY'S CAMPAIGN ROUND-UP.... Today's installment of campaign-related news items that won't necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:

* Jon Huntsman, the Obama administration's former ambassador to China, took his first step toward a Republican presidential campaign yesterday, creating a political action committee that will allow him to travel and raise money.

* Huntsman quickly drew praise from former President Jimmy Carter (D), which probably won't help his GOP bid.

* Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) has not yet decided whether he'll run for president, but he's solicited advice from George W. Bush.

* Mitt Romney's Republican presidential campaign enjoys big leads in New Hampshire primary polls, but in an ominous development, Bruce Keough, the 2008 chairman of Romney's New Hampshire campaign, has announced he won't support the former Massachusetts governor again.

* Rick Santorum created a presidential exploratory committee yesterday, moving his all-but announced campaign one step forward.

* Former half-term Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) shook up her foreign policy team yesterday, replacing Randy Scheunemann with Hoover Institution fellow Peter Schweizer. It remains unclear why Palin has a foreign policy team.

* It seems unlikely she'll be physically able to run for the seat, but Public Policy Polling found that Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D) would lead Rep. Jeff Flake (R) in next year's Senate race in Arizona, 48% to 41%.

* In a clever move, Democrat Darren Spellman attended a town-hall meeting hosted by Rep. Dan Lungren (R-Calif.), and announced his campaign against the congressman.

* State House races generally don't garner national attention, but Democrats won a seat in Wisconsin yesterday that had been held by Republicans for many years. The campaign focused largely on Gov. Scott Walker's (R) anti-union agenda, and Wisconsin Dems hope to duplicate the success in the upcoming recall elections.

Steve Benen 12:00 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (14)

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creating a political action committee that will allow him to travel and raise money.

Sounds like a headline from The Onion. Freedom at last.

Posted by: Danp on May 4, 2011 at 12:07 PM | PERMALINK

Palin needs a foreign policy team because...

* ... clearly, she needs one.

* ... two heads are better than none.

* ... she can see Russia from her house!

* ... she needs someone to help her to understand all those long words in the newspapers. She reads all of them, after all.

-Z

Posted by: Zorro on May 4, 2011 at 12:17 PM | PERMALINK

* In a clever move, Democrat Darren Spellman [...] -- Steve Benen

That's what the article you linked to says but, if you read the comments, you'll see that Spellman is no Dem; he's a Repub, of the TeaBagging variety. The Sacramento Bee article linked to in Political Wire has a little bit more although it doesn't mention Spellman's affiliation at all. But, again, the comments make it quite clear, hoping that Lungren and Spellman will split the Repub vote sufficiently for the Dem to squeak in.
http://blogs.sacbee.com/capitolalertlatest/2011/05/looking-to-l-theres-a.html

Posted by: exlibra on May 4, 2011 at 12:23 PM | PERMALINK

It remains unclear why Palin has a foreign policy team.

Yeah, my first reaction was "Sarah Palin has a foreign policy team?"

Considering her well-documented inability from the McCain campaign to learn the slightest thing about other countries, I would think that being part of that team would be a career-killer for anyone with an actual foreign-policy background. That must be why they hire from right-wing thing tanks instead...

Posted by: Redshift on May 4, 2011 at 12:23 PM | PERMALINK

The WI State Assembly member was Steve Doyle who was vastly out spent and subjected to classic swift-boating. Nice guy. Competent official.

Posted by: sengber on May 4, 2011 at 12:32 PM | PERMALINK

Nobody in the MSM ever seems to report this, but Mitt Romney has pretty much lived in New Hampshire for quite a while now -- back to when he was Governor of Massachusetts. Got a big mansion on Lake Winnipesaukee. He's the next best thing to a Favorite Son in NH.

As for Palin's "foreign policy team" -- obviously, she's trying to beef up the content of her Tweets.

Posted by: jvwalt on May 4, 2011 at 12:33 PM | PERMALINK

It remains unclear why Palin has a foreign policy team as both Sarah and Condi Rice know that the only real threat (besides democrats) to the U.S. is the Soviet Union and Sarah can keep an eye on them from her porch!

Posted by: SadOldVet on May 4, 2011 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

It remains unclear why Palin has a foreign policy team

Literally LOL. Thanks!

Posted by: ManOutOfTime on May 4, 2011 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

Sarah Palin has a foreign policy team because she offers to pay people to be on it. Can you imagine an easier gig than that? It's free money! Heck, I'd take the job myself if she offered it to me.

Posted by: Curmudgeon on May 4, 2011 at 12:55 PM | PERMALINK

No Bachmann or Palin in the Republican 'debate'?

My favorite line from this post is: "Huntsman quickly drew praise from former President Jimmy Carter (D), which probably won't help his GOP bid."

Democrats know how to hurt a guy good.

Posted by: jjm on May 4, 2011 at 1:24 PM | PERMALINK

Andy Borowitz has a suggestion which would save Steve Benen some time at noon every day:
http://www.borowitzreport.com/

Posted by: exlibra on May 4, 2011 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK

The 'Sarah Palin ...foreign policy' bit was a good guffaw, but the Huntsman drawing praise from former President Carter was FTW.

Posted by: Ken on May 4, 2011 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

* Huntsman quickly drew praise from former President Jimmy Carter (D), which probably won't help his GOP bid.

If only Carter was smart enough to do anything to help the American people besides build houses.

Posted by: max on May 4, 2011 at 3:03 PM | PERMALINK

It is really simple. The fact that so many of the supposed GOP-heavy hitters are not yet committed means that internally, they are not at all sure they can win. And most of them have teams that are weather-worn and know how rigorous a presidential campaign can be. And how unbelievably expensive.

And they know their electoral history and therefore know how hard it is to upset an incumbent. Even in hard times.

Posted by: bonncaruso on May 4, 2011 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK
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