Political Animal


October 30, 2012 1:55 PM Lunch Buffet

By Ed Kilgore

Hope everyone made it through the night okay. I realize Sandy’s still wreaking havoc—in some places where no one was much expecting it—but it appears DC was spared the worst, and even in NYC, it might have been worse.

Anyway, feel free to post any personal experiences or observations in the comment thread. Here are some lunch items from the emergency news stash:

* No, this isn’t from The Onion: Michael “Brownie” Brown accuses Obama of reacting too quickly to Sandy.

* Early estimate of economic losses from Sandy: $20 billion, with $7-8 billion in insured property damage.

* Richard Cohen offers least positive endorsement of a presidential candidate—Obama—in recorded history.

* Obama daily job approval rating jumps 3% in Gallup Tracking; in 7-day averages, Romney still up five among LVs.

* ABC’s Amy Walter suggests late ad push by GOPers in MN and PA partly because airwaves already “saturated” in battleground states.

And non non-political news:

* Flooded LaGuardia Airport to remain closed for days.

Back in a very short while.

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.


  • caphilldcne on October 30, 2012 2:12 PM:

    Thanks for writing about that terrible Cohen column. Here's the thing. I don't want the president to hold my hand. I want the President to enact policies that work. Given passage of the Affordable Care Act, TARP, saving the auto industry, ending DADT, support of marriage equality, protecting women's access to contraception and maintaining pro-choice policies, there is no reason for Cohen to write such a column. Moreover I seriously doubt the whole premise - It's pretty obvious that Obama cares. He just isn't wearing it on his sleeve. Hell I really wonder how much Bobby Kennedy really cared for gawd's sake - he was pretty ruthless. Anyway - retire already, Mr. Cohen.

  • Nancy Cadet on October 30, 2012 2:14 PM:

    Storm talk: in NYS Gov Andrew Cuomo's morning press conference, he began with a strong statement about the need to recognize that extreme weather would keep occurring and that infrastructure had to be rebuilt and redesigned with that in mind. He repeated it during the Q&A. He did not use the words "climate change " but at least this Dem elected official is broaching the possibility . NJ Gov Christie had some dismissive remarks about enabling photo ops for Romney.

    Here in Fort Greene BKLYN we didn't lose electric , heat or Internet ---luckier than many friends in lower Manhattan or across the river in Newark. We also saw the 14 St Con Ed substation (electric utility) explode last night , leaving the East River bridges and Manhattan skyline below 40th St dark.

  • Daryl McCullough on October 30, 2012 2:20 PM:

    Nate Silver's election predictions have been in the news recently, and I have to say that I don't get how his model works. If in the most recent polls, Romney is ahead by 5% among likely voters, why doesn't that mean that he is more likely to win the popular vote? (The electoral vote is more complicated)

  • zandru on October 30, 2012 2:24 PM:

    Way out here in what you 'coasters like to sneer at as "flyover country", a vast caravan of PNM trucks has left Albuquerque headed east to render aid in restoring your electrical service and infrastructure. There's a photo of a lineman hugging his wife and kids farewell, as if he's leaving for a war zone.

    You're welcome.

  • jjm on October 30, 2012 2:32 PM:

    Daryl McCullough on October 30, 2012 2:20 PM: One trick is how 'likely voters' is being defined. In all polls the custom was to believe that white men of the GOP persuasion were the most likely to go to vote, whereas minorities wouldn't find the time, energy or wherewithal to make it to the polls.

    Silver's model is strong, and it accounts for the fact of WHERE Obama is strongest, and how many electoral college votes it nets him.

    As for Romney, the fact that he has been consistent in only one thing this whole six year run for the presidency (he is absolutely committed to LYING about everything, whenever and wherever he can, reflexively, automatically) is a big test for the voters.

    If they were to elect this critter, I can't imagine someone more ill-equipped and more incompetent in such things as organization (he screwed up MA relief as governor, refused to spend funds he already had to help out Lowell from a big storm, demanded more $$ from the feds) in terms of diplomacy (this man never met a gaffe he did not like, or missed an opportunity to hurt people's feelings) and simple, comprehension of the people of this country.

  • KK on October 30, 2012 2:35 PM:

    Saw convoys of out of state trucks running West on I80 Sunday. Tucked away I guess to head east when needed. Thanks to all outbid state utilities. We will need all the help we can get. 90 percent of LI is out. It was like a fireworks show watching the transformers blow, one by one West to East, block by block. Words can't describe the the extensive damage here. 100's or thousands of 100 year old trees felled.
    Very happy our Dem Gov who acts like an R put his D cap back on. Funny but Gov Christie sounding like D today also.

  • T2 on October 30, 2012 2:48 PM:

    Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC made a point of saying Mitt's Ohio rally "donate food to hurricane victims" was a very thinly, cynically veiled Political Rally. The Politico guys pitched in with their "both sides do it" crap. She quoted the Red Cross as saying the food Mitt was collecting was not wanted by the Red Cross. Romney is campaigning, showing lying ads, while Obama is dealing with a massive disaster. Tells you all you need to know.
    Oh, and by the way, when the Romney Operative promises that he won't work to overturn Roe vs. Wade, you can be damn sure he intends to do just that. God, the American people are stupid....at least 53% of them.

  • gregor on October 30, 2012 2:54 PM:

    To the extent that Cohen is talking about a perceptible lack of passion on the issues that Obama supports, I hate to say that I tend to agree with him.

    On so many occasions, Obama has to be goaded into reacting to the Republican shenanigans. May be it is good politics, but it makes it difficult to support Obama with any passion except on the basis of the terribleness of the alternative.

  • bigtuna on October 30, 2012 2:56 PM:

    meanwhile, yesterday the Obama campaign simply set up a link that directs you from the Obama campaign site to the red cross donation site - which, in acute emergencies, disaster groups say they need cash, not some made for TV bullshit event


  • TCinLA on October 30, 2012 3:03 PM:

    hey Paul Glastris:

    How long does it fucking take for you to live up to the promises made TWO AND A HALF MONTHS AGO to get this place straightened out? Like to get rid of that obnoxious ad that ad-blocker doesn't stop that comes up from the lower right corner and when you click to close it, it OPENS ANOTHER AD?? I won't even mention captcha, which you had "top of the list" to get rid of.

  • Jim Strain on October 30, 2012 3:03 PM:

    Cohen wanted Shaft; he's disappointed that he got Cliff Huxtable.

  • boatboy_srq on October 30, 2012 3:22 PM:

    Typical of Brownie to complain that responding to a crisis is political posturing.

    Has anyone read the comments on that one? The GOTea is in full whinge that Brownie's shenanigans in NOLA (free hotel rooms for his buddies?) are ok b/c Al Gore is fat and Clinton got a hummer in the Oval Office, or something.

    @T2: The rallies are another "Atlas Scrubbed" moment: manufactured concern for people who need more than faux concern (and in this case food they can't use).

  • N.Wells on October 30, 2012 3:22 PM:

    Words fail me in reacting to Brown's statement about Obama "reacting too quickly" (other than, "you're a heckuvan a'hole, Brownie"). Clearly, being a master of reacting too slowly and too little does not qualify one to say anything about reaction rates. Isn't there some way to strand Brown in the middle of an emergency and letting him marinate in his own misery?

    I'm not doing much better with Romney-Ryan posturing on disaster relief - these guys want to cut FEMA back to almost nothing and leave people without federal assistance, so they are just hypocritically hiding their heartless agenda under a false pretense of collecting relief supplies. It's moments like these that I regret not believing in an afterlife: few people are more deserving of a hell with a special place reserved just for them.

  • g on October 30, 2012 4:24 PM:

    The fact that someone gave that loser Michael Brown access to a microphone is a travesty in itself.

  • g on October 30, 2012 4:29 PM:

    Mitt Romney could easily just write a check for a couple million to the Red Cross. Where's Donald Trump with the $5 million he has available if the President shows his papers, can't Mitt prevail upon the Donald to donate it to save the city that enriched Trump? How about asking Sheldon and the Koch's to pony up a couple mil each?

    Why doesn't Mitt Romney just write a check for a couple million to the Red Cross instead of having Ohioans bring in cans of beans?