Political Animal


August 23, 2012 6:08 PM Day’s End and Night Watch

By Ed Kilgore

A day without a lot of news, but with a lot of interesting writing, to which I hope I have contributed. Anyway, here’s some final links:

* New Pew study documents objective and subjective desolation of middle class since 2000. You may recall we had an election that year.

* Salt Lake Tribune skeptically reports Romney’s saying he doesn’t want to release tax returns to maintain privacy about LDS contributions. Why?

* Random individual Obama volunteer in Tennessee suggests anti-Mormon message; BuzzFeed is there to tell you about it. Thanks, very newsworthy.

* At Ten Miles Square, Harold Pollack underlines impact on seniors of Medicaid cuts.

* At College Guide, Daniel Luzer examines theory that corporate America is happy with cowed, debt-ridden college grads happy to take any old job.

And in non-political news:

* Airlines continue to shrink legroom for economy seats. Glad I’m not tall.

Back tomorrow to end the week and transition to the GOP convention—unless Isaac cancels it.


Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • jjm on August 23, 2012 6:52 PM:

    Mormonism should be an issue. Not to engage in discriminatory and inflammatory rhetoric, but really, it has tenets that materially affect this candidate, who was a BISHOP and who has not been excommunicated, so he clearly espouses their views. The American people should know what those views are.

  • SteveT on August 23, 2012 7:03 PM:

    Airlines continue to shrink legroom for economy seats. Glad I’m not tall.

    Several years ago a straw broke this camel's back and I decided it was less painful to drive 15 straight hours to visit my family than is was to fly.

    My connecting flight from O'Hare Airport was cancelled on Christmas Eve. The airline closed its help desk even though I and several dozen of my fellow passengers were standing in line waiting for someone to tell us how we could avoid spending the night at the airport.

    This decision will not do anything to coax me into giving the fuckers my money once more.

  • Mitch on August 23, 2012 7:09 PM:


    Indeed, it should be. Mormonism has a number of disturbing features about it, not the least of which is Lying for the Lord.

    Were Romney running against anyone else but a black man with a "funny" name, he would be totally unacceptable to the Religious Right and, thus, the GOP. The Fundies in my social circle are very distraught about voting for a "heathen" like Romney. Some of my family has said that they will not vote for him, no matter what. They would rather abstain than support a Mormon. They'll leave the nation's fate in "God's hands" instead.

    As a child I was raised (as a Southern Baptist, Fundamentalist) to view Mormonism - and the Jehovah Witnesses - with even more scorn than Islam or even atheism. At least those types don't "claim" to be Christian, my preacher would say.

  • Varecia on August 23, 2012 8:15 PM:

    If an Obama volunteer posted that, it was wrong. Yes, conservatives have been really shameless in using religion to tear down Obama, but that doesn't mean I'm comfortable using it in this manner. I want to know if it was really a genuine volunteer or someone posing as a volunteer. And considering that there are THOUSANDS of principled Obama volunteers working on this campaign, bad judgement in ONE volunteer should not be a major issue. In contrast, is there a conservative out there--elected official, party hack, or just a voter--who hasn't bashed Obama on religious grounds?

  • Bobby Goren on August 23, 2012 8:37 PM:

    * Salt Lake Tribune skeptically reports Romney’s saying he doesn’t want to release tax returns to maintain privacy about LDS contributions. Why?

    I will give Romney a deal: keep your entire returns private if you submit to an exhaustive IRS audit.

  • Joe Friday on August 23, 2012 10:12 PM:

    Bad news for Ryan/Romney and their plans for Medicare vouchers in the latest CBS News/NY Times poll:

    Continue Medicare as it is or change to Ryan/Romney voucher plan ?


    62% - Continue

    28% - Vouchers


    64% - Continue

    27% - Vouchers


    59% - Continue

    32% - Vouchers

  • Califlander on August 24, 2012 12:01 AM:

    Romney has already released his 2010 tax return, including the amount of his contributions to his church that year.

    So ... when he says he doesn't want to release his taxes because it would be contrary to his faith, he's lying.

  • nitpicker on August 24, 2012 1:14 AM:

    You know what? It's the right that has pushed religion into politics again and again over the past 50 years, suggesting Democrats were going to ban the Bible or were otherwise insufficiently faithful. If some Democrats in the south want to reach out to their neighbors and highlight the ways in which Mormonism differs from traditional Christianity, I'm fine with it, frankly.

  • schtick on August 24, 2012 1:29 AM:

    And at the end of the day the question still remains:
    willar, where are your taxe returns?

  • schtick on August 24, 2012 1:32 AM:

    Yikes. That was supposed to be "tax" and capital W and a d at the end of Willar...sheesh.

  • Eli Rabett on August 24, 2012 10:26 AM:

    thanks ralph

  • Anonymous on August 25, 2012 5:16 AM:

    Perception can be deceptive. While most bedroom painting and bedroom paintings consider preparing a canvas for an oil or acrylic painting very difficult, it is really not so.