Political Strategy Notes
Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs does an excellent job of keeping CNN's Candy Crowley on point about Romney's indefensible refusal to release his tax records, despite her effort to make Harry Reid the issue. Transcript here.
And give it up for Reid for using the GOP's message du jour against them, as Catalina Camia reports at USA Today: ""They're a bunch of cowards, and they're avoiding the issue," David Krone, Reid's chief of staff, told Politico. "Lindsey Graham, Reince Priebus -- they're a bunch of henchmen for Romney, and they're all reading off the same talking points. They couldn't hold a candle to Harry Reid." As Mark Halperin notes at Time magazine's 'The page': "I think Republicans have misplayed this because they're keeping it alive as Reid wanted them to. He doesn't mind being called those names, he couldn't care less, but it keeps the story alive." Fun to see the Republicans' legendary echo chamber backfire.
By the way, the tax records of President Obama and Vice President Biden are available right here, going back 12 and 14 years, respectively. Is it really to much to ask that a Republican presidential candidate be equally forthcoming?
Jason Lange of Reuters has an interesting survey of presidential election forecasting models and their track records.
For a possible explanation for the GOP's increasing desperation, see the Daily Beast's "Michael Tomasky on the (Possible) Coming Obama Landslide" One of Tomasky's observations the GOP should find particularly worrisome: "Obama can lose the big Eastern four--Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida: all of 'em!--and still be reelected."
Jon Soltz, a two-tour Iraq veteran and Chairman of VoteVets.org., blogs at Think Progress on "Why Does Mitt Romney Want To Restrict Voting Rights For More Than 900,000 Ohio Veterans?" Says Soltz, "...Mitt Romney, by supporting the Ohio law that would do away with three days of early voting for all but those covered under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voter Act ('UOCAVA'), is supporting the restriction of voting rights for as many as 913,000 Ohio veterans...My question for Mitt Romney is simple: "Why won't you join the Obama lawsuit in Ohio, and protect our veterans' right to vote?""
It's an oft-repeated bromide of politics that 'a better-informed electorate strengthens Democracy.' But Anthony Fowler and Michele Margolis have a post up at The Boston Review, that shows "How Informing the Voters Helps the Democrats." As the authors explain, "Voters uninformed on party positions who received information increased their evaluation of the Democratic Party by 0.8 points and decreased their evaluation of the Republican Party by 1.4 points, relative to the control group that received no information."
David Schorr argues persuasively at Democracy Arsenal that a robust discussion about the reasons for high unemployment is something Dems should be encouraging. Says Schorr: "The conventional wisdom has it backwards, every day we really talk about the economy is a good day for the Obama campaign."
The "Let's make lemonade" award for the last week must go to former Republican Secretary of Education William J. Bennett for his CNN post on Romney's blundering excursion abroad, "On world stage, Romney showed smarts."