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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

News Roundup for 3/30/11

Empty debate stage
GOP candidates prepare for the first presidential debate

-Headline of the day-
"First Presidential Debate Pushed Back To September Due To Lack Of Candidates."

The Politico/NBC News presidential debate was going to be the first presidential debate, all but officially kicking off the 2012 presidential race, and it was going to be held May 2. Not anymore. According to the report, "The two big media titans announced today that they will push the debate back to the fall because so few candidates have officially announced their plans to run."

Announced candidates include Barack Obama, AKA "The Prez," Fred Karger, AKA "who?" and Jimmy McMillan, AKA the "Rent's Too Damn High Guy." In fact, not even Obama has officially announced his candidacy -- it's just taken for granted. I mean, when you're the incumbent, you're really a candidate unless you announce you're not running. And anyway, the debate seems to be GOP-only, which means just Who and the Mustache Gardener.

John Heubusch, executive director for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation which runs the debate, said, "Although there will be a long and impressive list of Republican candidates who eventually take the field, too few have made the commitment thus far for a debate to be worthwhile in early May."

Fox News, on the other hand, is undaunted and sticking to their May 5 schedule for their first debate. I'm sure that those three days will be enough time for GOPers to stop waffling and throw their hats in the ring. I mean, they ought to be able to get their shit together by then, right?

"This is my 10th presidential campaign, Lord help me," writes Time's Joe Klein. "I have never before seen such a bunch of vile, desperate-to-please, shameless, embarrassing losers coagulated under a single party's banner. They are the most compelling argument I've seen against American exceptionalism."

OK, so maybe not. (Talking Points Memo)

-Which is weird, because...-
...a new Quinnipiac poll puts President Obama in a pretty bad place. According to the report, the poll "gives President Barack Obama the lowest approval ratings of his presidency, with a majority of Americans saying he does not deserve another term in the White House."

I've got a quibble with the term "majority," since the percentage is 50% -- half isn't a majority, 51% is -- but it's close enough for horseshoes and hand grenades.

Still, the poll finds that the slump in Obama's numbers comes from his actions in Libya, which 47% oppose. In Obama's defense, these numbers are confusing, since "65% of the respondents think the U.S. should use military force to protects civilians from Col. Gadhafi, but they oppose using military force to remove him, 48%-41%" -- in other words, a vast majority back Obama's plan. Apparently, they just don't know that is the plan.

If only we had some sort of information-dispensing mechanism to set the public straight on that point -- a "news media," if you will.

Oh well, if wishes were horses... (Wall Street Journal)

-Bonus HotD-
"Clueless in Wisconsin: Newt Gingrich Praises Gov Walker as Job Creator."

Did you know Newt Gingrich used to be a history professor? That's right, he had a job teaching people about reality.

I hope he used to be better at it. (Politicususa)
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