The GOP is already working on a way to cave on the debt ceiling. Right now, the puzzle seems to be how to cave without sending the base into a panic. Frankly, I could care less whether they can pull that one off or not. I’m not going to lose a lot of sleep worrying whether Republicans can avoid stepping on their own landmines. Serves them right for laying them in the first place.
Is GOP Rep. Michael Grimm — the guy who threatened to beat up a reporter last night after the SOTU — abusing steroids?
Republican leadership is none too pleased with Rand Paul’s response to the State of the Union last night. According the HuffPo’s Jon Ward, “A Republican leadership aide, speaking without authorization, said that leadership offices were in fact ‘unhappy’ with Paul for ‘such a blatant, self-promoting move’ that lent itself easily to stories that the party remains divided.”
Rising ocean levels force Fijian villagers to relocate — see, because global warming, melting ice caps, and swelling seas are just a big hoax and all.
Former Bush speechwriter and current rightwing hack Marc Thiessen accuses Pres. Obama of plagiarizing his 2014 SOTU address from Dubya’s 2007 address. Saying the words seemed “eerily familiar,” he told Fox News’ Megyn Kelly that Obama lifted whole passages from Bush. The problem? It’s all bullshit. “A quick text compare shows that no lines were directly lifted from Bush’s 2007 speech in the one Obama gave on Tuesday,” the report tells us.What Thiessen’s complaining about is that Obama spoke with the same vague optimism as Bush — and every president who ever gave a speech anywhere — used. Thiessen’s hackishness has no bottom.
The new frontrunner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination: Mike Huckabee. After his bizarre comments about women’s libidos and contraception, liberals and the media piled on Huckabee. And there’s nothing the wingnut base loves more than a victim, unless it’s a troll. By offending women everywhere and then getting beat up because of it, the former Arkansas governor qualifies as both.
Paul Ryan spells out a possible Republican version of immigration reform that does not include a path to citizenship — but doesn’t rule out citizenship, either. Greg Sargent explains how this proposal demonstrates the pickle the GOP finds themselves in on the issue.
The House passes a farm bill with $8 billion in cuts to food assistance. This very bad idea is expected to pass the Senate easily and be signed by the President.
Fox’s Neil Cavuto speaks conservative heresy by criticizing the Republican response to the State of the Union. “[Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers] did a horrible job,” Cavuto told guest Rick Santorum. “She did a horrible job, you know it. And she’s a wonderful person, but it was horrible.”
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal is in a lot of hot water over his state’s terrible response to a winter storm that basically shut the place down. Seriously, it was bad. Thousands of people — including kids in school buses — were trapped on icy roadways overnight, because Deal simply did not take the threat at all seriously. When your state is the home to both CNN and the Weather Channel, it’s a good idea to deal with bad weather competently. Otherwise, you’re guaranteed hour after hour after hour of bad press. On more levels than one, Deal is getting criticism he both deserves and invited.
Finally, Michele Bachmann is a ridiculous clown. You probably already knew that, but it pays to remind everyone from time to time.
[cartoon via McClatchy Newspapers]
A rare glimmer of logical consistency on the right.
This morning, I wrote that if Republicans really believed their own “fetal pain” horseshit, they never would’ve amended their bill to make exceptions for victims of rape and incest. After all, the rationale behind the law was to protect a fetus from pain. So what difference would in make how that fetus came to be conceived?
“Imagine this all from the perspective of someone who believed every word in the original bill,” I wrote. “What you’re voting for is a law against torturing babies to death. Assuming that’s what you really believed, would you then support an exception to that law? Would you support allowing a woman to torture her baby to death, just because that child was conceived through rape or incest? I’m kind of thinking you would not. Not in a million years. It would be playing politics in an unconscionable way.”
Now Ed Kilgore offers an example of just how rare a logically consistent conservative actually is:
[Georgia Right to Life] broke with the National Right To Life Committee to oppose the “fetal pain” abortion bill on the House floor, as reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Jim Galloway:[T]he message of the last-minute flurry from GRTL was clear, as it urged its supporters to call their member of Congress to request a no vote on the “hijacked” bill.“What they’ve done is target a particular class of children, those conceived in rape and incest,” [GRTL spox Suzanne] Ward said. “While Georgia Right to Life has the utmost sympathy for those victims, we can’t justify murder in those circumstances.”
And surprise, surprise, one of the co-sponsors of the original House bill, Rep. Paul Broun, denounced the bill and voted against it, carrying with him another Georgia colleague, Rep. Rob Woodall.
Kilgore goes on to write that Broun’s running for Senate and is eager to shore up his wingnut bona fides. But consider the giant loophole in the bill was and consider that National Right to Life backed it anyway. They obviously don’t believe this “fetal pain” crap, despite the fact that it’s becoming a cornerstone of their movement. They just want to chip away at the right to choose, one excuse is as good as any other, and if rape and incest get a free pass… Well, it’s fewer abortions in the long run anyway, which has been the whole damned point all along — along with a court challenge to Roe.
It might be tempting to give Broun and the GRTL some credit for being consistent in their reasoning, but unfortunately that consistency either means they actually believe the anti-science hoodoo they’re pushing or that they’re supremely committed to the lie.
See, now that’s your problem right there…
While the RNC was busy trying (and failing) to get together a Celebrity Task Force in Hollywood, something else was going on in Georgia. See if you can figure out which might be a bigger impediment to voter outreach.
Raw Story: Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal (R) has refused through a spokesperson to endorse one town’s first-ever integrated high school prom, saying that he would rather not take sides on the issue. According to Atlanta’s WMAZ Channel 13, politicians from both parties have stated their support for black and white students from Wilcox, Georgia, but Deal declined to join them.
Raw Story spoke to activist Bryan Long of the progressive group Better Georgia, whose group has asked Georgia elected officials “to publicly support the students of Wilcox County who are fighting to end a ‘separate-but-equal’ high school prom.”
“We thought it would be nice if our elected officials would support these students,” said Long. “They’re taking a great stand in their community. We thought that officials all across the state should send a message to the nation that we’ve moved beyond the racial divisions of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s.”
He added, “We were surprised to read that the governor’s spokesperson said that he wouldn’t be ‘taking sides’ on this issue. I didn’t know that there were sides to take.”
Of course there are sides to take. There’s the racist side and there’s the non-racist side. It should be a no-brainer — you take the non-racist side. But Deal refuses to do that; whether because he’s a racist himself, because he’s afraid of alienating racist voters, or both is pretty much irrelevant. When the party can’t be counted on to stand up to honest-to-goodness racism — and segregation is blatant racism — then you’re going to have yourself a little trouble convincing minority voters they should vote for you.
If Deal’s not a racist, then he’s a coward. Worse, by saying he’s not going to take sides, he takes sides with the racists by default, since this is conceding — without actually saying it outright — that the segregationists have a valid argument. Racism isn’t something you can “stay out of.” By fleeing from the argument in cowardice, Nathan Deal has chosen his side and that choice does not redound to his glory.
RNC head Reince Priebus should personally fly down to Georgia and kick Deal in the ass — if not as a Republican, then as a Wisconsinite. We don’t have a history of putting up with this shit. At the very least, he ought to realize that the problems the GOP faces aren’t caused by a lack of celebrity endorsements, but by cowardly morons like Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal.