- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
- John Boehner says GOP should support gay candidates: ‘I do’
- Grass-Whopper: Pan-fried cricket burgers go over big in New York City
Inside the Beltway
Question of the Day
Brace for impact. Here come the "Obama-Biden 2012" bumper stickers, destined for every Prius in the nation. Here come the marketing blitz, the videos and the mawkish, fawning media. As Republican presidential hopefuls dither, President Obama has declared he'll run for re-election, trading in the old grandiose hopey-changey campaign for tea party-style grass-roots appeal and the cozy catchphrase "It begins with us."
It also begins with money, a fact keenly felt by Republicans who are daunted by rumors of Mr. Obama's potential billion-dollar campaign. There is good reason to pause. Fundraising apparatus is in motion. A trio of monumental "Obama Victory Fund 2012 Kick-Off with the President" events are scheduled April 14-20 at the Grand Ballroom of the Navy Pier in Chicago, the Nob Hill Masonic Center in San Francisco and Sony Pictures Studios in Los Angeles. Admission prices are as high as $2,500.
And while Mr. Obama and his strategists may posture like true denizens of the heartland, these fundraisers portend a vigorous, aggressive campaign with all the trimmings. Consider that the big finale fundraiser at Sony Pictures Studios exclusively features the fancy fare of chef Wolfgang Puck; the site advises its clients, "Immerse your guests in Hollywood glitz and glamour." Uh-huh. And we can only imagine the guest list. And this is just the beginning.
THE COURIC DERBY
Handicapping the replacement: It's a favorite parlor game among the restless and overconnected. And naturally, the guessing game as to who will succeed "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric is in full swing. There's talk that CBS' "60 Minutes" point man Scott Pelley is a leading contender. The names of Fox News' Shepard Smith, CNN's Anderson Cooper, NBC's David Gregory and even deposed MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann have also been bandied about.
The more imaginative wonder is what would happen if a politician turned pundit took the chair, or if Comedy Central's fake newsman Jon Stewart decided to get serious. Then there's Gawker.com editor Hamilton Nolan, who gives ABC's morning host George Stephanopoulos 10-to-1 odds as Mrs. Couric's replacement.
"The smug little politico who's been masquerading as a journalist for the past several years would certainly like a newsier job than 'Good Morning America.' His total lack of gravitas means he would be a horrible choice for CBS. Don't count him out," Mr. Nolan observes.
Observers are monitoring "Operation Pantsuit," the waggish name that has come to symbolize Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's potential bid for the White House. Pantsuiters routinely monitor her favorability polls. They parse Mrs. Clinton's speeches and global appearances, watching for signs that the former senator and first lady is ready for bigger things, and sweet revenge, perhaps, for herself and former President Bill Clinton.
"While it's true the Clintons are ambitious people, they've never been known to go on suicide missions," observes KABC talk radio host and Los Angeles Times contributor John Phillips. "Despite her contemporary denials, Hillary would only throw her hat in the ring if she thought she had a better than even chance at moving back into the White House. President Obama is looking weak, but not weak enough to justify a primary challenge - yet."
Mr. Phillips continues, "If Libya turns into a full blown disaster, resulting in billions of dollars wasted, boots on the ground and abysmal public opinion numbers, my money is on Hillary resigning her post as Secretary of State and jumping in the 2012 primary. She can even rerun the '3 A.M. Phone Call' ad, with the tagline 'See? I told you so.' "
"To all U.S. military members, on behalf of the people of Japan, I sincerely express my deep appreciation for the tremendous support provided by the U.S. military, the U.S. government and the American people at a time of unprecedented crisis in Japan."
A message from Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan to sailors and service members aboard the USS Ronald Reagan, delivered in person by Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa on Monday.
"The entire Japanese people are deeply moved and encouraged by scenes of U.S. military members working hard in support of relief efforts. Those in Japan and the United States are true 'tomodachi' [friends]. ... They share basic values such as democracy and respect for human rights," Mr. Kitazawa told the Reagan crew.
JESSE TOLERATES SARAH
Jesse Ventura did not mask his annoyance with Fox News when he recently spoke with Inside the Beltway, complaining that the network would not deign to put him on the air. But CNN has no problem with the former Minnesota governor. Mr. Ventura appeared on CNN on Piers Morgan's talkfest Monday night where the pair argued over politics; the former wrestler reconfirmed that he hates both Republican and Democratic parties, but when pressed to pick a presidential candidate, he allowed that he would bet on Sarah Palin.
"She's the type of person that certainly will be controlled by the status quo and the power structure," Mr. Ventura told Mr. Morgan. "So she'd make a perfect candidate for them. She'll do what she's told."
POLL DU JOUR
• 43 percent of likely U.S. voters approve of President Obama's job performance.
• 52 percent give him a good rating on Japan disaster relief.
• 42 percent approve of the president's domestic security policy; 38 percent favor his "war on terrorism."
• 36 percent favor Mr. Obama's health care policy; 35 percent approve of his economic policy.
• 34 percent give a good rating to his response to the Libya conflict; 30 percent approve of his response to the war in Afghanistan.
• 28 percent approve of Mr. Obama's take on financial regulations; 27 percent approve of his response to immigration issues.
Source: A Zogby Interactive survey of 2,126 likely voters conducted April 1-4.
• Campaigns, hue and cry, hissy fits to email@example.com.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
- Inside the Beltway: 'Guns Save Lives Day'
- Inside the Beltway: Conservatives ponder next 'character assassin'
- Inside the Beltway: Americans think U.S. global prestige is fading, Pew poll shows
- Inside the Beltway: Stringent advice from a reporter to Obama on Term 2
- Inside the Beltway: Obamacare team lauds 'private sector velocity' of website repairs
Latest Blog Entries
- Americans just say yes: members of Congress should be subject to random drug testing
- 70 percent of Americans say U.S. has lost world respect; 80 percent of GOP, 56 percent of Democrats agree
- For the gift givers arsenal: politically incorrect guides that praise America
- 70 percent of Americans fear another government shutdown in January when the money runs out
- Are you the parent of a girl? Then you're likely a conservative Republican study says
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- Colorado judge: Bakery owner discriminated against gay couple
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- Rush Limbaugh: Obama trying to make Mandela death about himself
- Obama administration issues permits for wind farms to kill more eagles
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- Obamas call to close Vatican embassy is 'slap in the face' to Roman Catholics
- MILLER: Obamacare enrollees include 101 members of the House of Representatives
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
Why can’t humans just be free to be humans?
Get in the middle of all the action inside and outside the boxing ring.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!