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Posts Tagged ‘2012 Elections’

Bill Schneider’s Political Oscars 2012

February 24th, 2013


Best picture

It was a terrible tragedy that ended in a touching love story. Chris Christie and Barack Obama in A Sandy Love Story. It helped Obama get re-elected, and it may do the same for Governor Christie in New Jersey this year.


Best performance by an actor

Karl Rove’s meltdown on Fox News election night, trying to argue that Ohio went for Romney. A bravura performance.

Best performance by an actress

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill performs in the Republican Senate primary. She runs ads calling Todd Akin—who invented something called “legitimate rape”—“the most conservative congressman in Missouri.” It works. She gets the opponent she wants. And wins.

Best supporting actor

Bill Clinton speech at the Democratic convention: “Now, people ask me all the time how we got four surplus budgets in a row. What new ideas did we bring to Washington? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic.”

Best supporting actress               

Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown University law student Rush Limbaugh insulted. Fluke endorsed Obama. And the Republican “war or women” became an issue.

Best director

Chief Justice John Roberts directed the Supreme Court to uphold the Obama health care law. That may have turned the tide in the election.

Best song

Mitt Romney singing “America the Beautiful.” And he wasn’t lip synching.

Best live action short

Mitt Romney talking about the 47 percent of Americans he didn’t care about. Credit to Jimmy Carter IV, who made the tape public.

Best foreign language film

Clint Eastwood at the Republican convention speaking in “chair” to a piece of furniture.

Best cinematography

The Etch-a-sketch image, created by Romney aide Eric Fehrnstrom .

Resulting in

Best costume design

The Tea Party movement. No one could beat their get-ups.

Best adapted screenplay

Newt Gingrich attacking the news media in the South Carolina debate. This story was adapted from a long history of conservative attacks on the media, going back to Spiro Agnew. The attack delivers victory to Gingrich in the S.C. primary.

Best original screenplay

New York Times blogger Nate Silver, who provided the authoritative narrative of the election. If there was any big winner in this election besides President Obama, it was Mr. Silver. And Big Data.

New America vs. Old America

September 11th, 2012


This piece was originally featured in Politico.

It’s time for the Great Showdown between the Old and New Americas. The Old America met in Tampa. The New America met in Charlotte.

What the country wants to know is: Which America can manage the economy better? The answer is not clear. That’s why this election is so close. The Old America got us into this mess. The New America can’t seem to get us out of it.

The Old America’s rallying cry at the Republican National Convention: “Restore Our Future.” Take us back to the days when America was rich, great and powerful, the undisputed leader of the world. GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney declared, “You might have asked yourself if these last years are really the America we want, the America won for us by the greatest generation.” Read the rest of this entry »

Can Paul Ryan sell austerity?

August 13th, 2012


This piece was originally posted on Politico.

Can Republicans sell austerity? That’s the message Mitt Romney is sending by naming Paul Ryan as his running mate.

The Ryan move signals a major redefinition of the Romney campaign. It’s no longer about creating jobs and turning around the economy. It’s about fiscal discipline and turning around the budget. That’s Ryan’s calling. He is, after all, chairman of the House Budget Committee. Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t Panic: The NYT Poll is an Outlier

July 19th, 2012


The NYT/CBS poll released today has left many Democrats nervous and pundits wondering if this is the turning of the tide. But neither alarm nor even real interest is warranted: this poll is an outlier and should be viewed with real skepticism.

This kind of thing happens all the time. Polls get weird samples and the results look too strange to be true. Last month, Bloomberg had one showing Obama with a 13-point lead. That was wrong, and this Times poll is almost certainly wrong as well.

Reasons for doubt: Horserace

The NYT/CBS poll has Romney winning the head-to-head by 2 points, within the margin of error. This is unsurprising—no one expects a blowout this year. Real Clear Politics, which takes the average of publicly available media polls and includes this newest survey, finds the race closer than 2 points, but with President Obama winning 46.3% to 44.9%. Read the rest of this entry »

Fact Time: The Hispanic Vote

July 13th, 2012


While Hispanic voters have tended to support Democrats by wide margins in national elections, they are by no means always a sure bet for Democrats. Half of all Hispanic-Americans identify as an Independent. And Independents are not loyal party voters—even if they lean towards one party or the other. Take the example of former President George W. Bush.

In 2000, former Vice President Al Gore won the Hispanic vote by 27 points. But by 2004, President Bush’s support among Hispanics improved, reducing Sen. John Kerry’s margin to 9 points that November. In just 4 years, there was an 18 point swing in Hispanic voting! Democrats rebounded in 2008, with President Obama winning the Hispanic vote by 36 points. In current polls, the President appears ready to extend that margin, up recently by 41 points over Mitt Romney.

While it’s unlikely that Romney will capture a sizeable share of the Hispanic vote—indeed, he’s more likely to suffer former Sen. Bob Dole’s fate (he lost the Hispanic vote by 52 points in 1996)—Hispanic voters may not always support Democrats by wide margins. As President Bush illustrated, this is a group that is open to voting for both parties.

Ccccchhhaa Chhaaa Chhaaa Chaaaannges… Not yet.

July 11th, 2012


This piece was originally posted on The Huffington Post.

The economy is stalled. So is the campaign. Nothing much has changed since it became clear in February that Mitt Romney would be the Republican nominee.

Some 65 non-partisan national polls have been taken since early February. Average the poll results every two weeks and what happens? Nothing. Obama’s lead has bounced around from one point to six. No trend.

What about all those dramatic twists and turns so breathlessly covered by cable news? The showdown over contraception. The Romney campaign’s “Etch-a-Sketch” moment. The impact? Nothing changed.

What about the disappointing jobs numbers? The Washington Post reported that “in the wake of the May jobs report, President Obama’s economic job approval rating hardly moved at all and neither did his support in a contest with Romney.” The Supreme Court’s decision to uphold health care reform? CNN’s poll at the end of May showed Obama 49, Romney 46. And CNN’s poll at the end of June following the health care decision?  Obama 49, Romney 46. Read the rest of this entry »