- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 3, 2011

PARTISAN GRIDIRON

Those quarterback sacks, the excruciating tackles: Republicans are apparently more appreciative of NFL “violence” than Democrats. There’s a partisan divide even when it comes to football, says a new Poll Position survey of 1,032 voters revealing that GOPers actually favor the rough stuff more than other respondents in multiple demographic categories. A quarter of all Americans say that professional football is “too violent,” compared to 21 percent of Republicans and 31 percent of Democrats.

Meanwhile, 43 percent of Americans overall say there’s just “the right amount of violence” in the game; 47 percent of Republicans and 33 percent of Democrats agree. Last but not least, 12 percent of Americans say pro football is “not violent enough;” 11 percent of Republicans and 13 Democrats agree. See the terse results, along with other topical findings, at http://pollposition.com.

HERMAN AND MITT DREAM

A noisy week is about to get noisier. Herman Cain and Mitt Romney both speak at Americans for Prosperity’s two-day “Defending the American Dream Summit” on Friday and Saturday in downtown Washington, which has drawn a cast of thousands that includes Andrew Breitbart, Mark Levin, Rudy Giuliani, Andrew Napolitano, Carly Fiorina and Reps. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, Andy Harris of Maryland, Mike Pompeo of Kansas, and Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington state.

Both Mr. Cain and Mr. Romney will be in fighting mode, the former to defend his reputation, the latter to set forth a major economic speech tailored to woo fiscal conservatives and tea party skeptics. There will be much caterwaul outside the Washington Convention Center, however.

Health Care for America Now and 11 other progressive groups will stage an outdoor film festival in a nearby parking lot, waggishly labeled the “Occupy the Kochs’ Guerrilla Drive-In.” Organizers expect hundreds of protesters on hand “to enjoy popcorn, good food and political satire videos highlighting the Koch brothers efforts to destroy the American Dream.”

AMERICA GOES NUTS

Cautionary reports have surfaced on TheStreet.com and elsewhere that the price of peanut butter will go up by as much as 20 percent in the next week, prompting Americans to start hoarding and stocks at Smucker’s, Kraft and other manufacturers to start rising. There’s news for the cocktail set, too: Newly available in 32 state from Pandora Spirits, it’s “NutLiquor,” the world’s first peanut butter-flavored vodka.

“Contains no peanut allergies and was created to be enjoyed neat,” the maker advises; yes, they have also devised a peanut butter martini for the occasion.

JOHN, JESSE, BILL

“Herman Cain is winning the Republican race for president. So the left-wing media has swung into action,” says Jordan Gehrke, campaign director for Americans for Herman Cain, a Virginia-based “political committee” not connected with the candidate but registered with the Federal Election Commission.

“This from the same group of liberals who have spent the last 20 years defending John Edwards and his love child, Jesse Jackson and his illegitimate child, or Bill Clinton and his string of affairs, Mr. Gehrke continues, in a vigorous fundraising plea for Mr. Cain.

“This is what the Left always does. They hated Clarence Thomas. They hated Allen West when he ran in 2010. And now they hate Herman Cain. The Left spews such hatred at black conservatives because they know that if the GOP ever breaks the Democrat stranglehold on the black vote, they are done as a party.”

REAGANATORS

Iowa has drawn half of the Republican presidential field to Des Moines for the Iowa Republican Party’s annual Ronald Reagan Dinner on Friday evening. Reps. Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Texas Gov. Rick Perry will each deliver a 10-minute speech at the mammoth event before Republican voters who are indeed proud of their “first in the nation” status.

C-Span2 will broadcast the dinner live beginning at 8 p.m. ET; Sen. Chuck Grassley, Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds and Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn will also man the dais.

CANDIDATE TRACKER

Oh, it’s an Iowa-centric weekend for the Republican hopefuls, alright. But there’s also a noteworthy Lone Star match-up: Herman Cain faces rival Newt Gingrich at a “Lincoln-Douglas-style” debate hosted by the Texas Tea Party Patriots in Houston. C-SPAN is there, too, broadcasting live on Saturday at 8 p.m. Meanwhile, here’s where the entire GOP gaggle will be in the next 72 hours:

Iowa (Reps. Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul, Mr. Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and Mitt Romney). Minnesota and North Dakota (Mr. Paul). South Carolina (Jon Huntsman) Texas (Mr. Gingrich, Mr. Cain). Washington, D.C.: (Mr. Cain, Mr. Romney).

POLL DU JOUR

• 53 percent of Americans say President Obama makes them feel “disappointed.”

• 47 percent of “millennials” (18-30 year-olds), 53 percent of Gen X-ers (31-46 years), 56 percent of Baby Boomers (47-65) and 59 percent of those over 65 agree.

• 45 percent say Mr. Obama makes them feel “proud.” 49 percent of millennials, 45 percent of Gen X-ers, 45 percent of Boomers and 38 percent of plus-65 agree.

• 43 percent say the president makes them feel “hopeful.” 48 percent of millennials, 45 percent of Gen X-ers, 42 percent of Boomers and 37 percent of plus-65 agree.

• 40 percent of Americans overall say Mr. Obama makes them “uneasy.” 33 percent of millennials, 36 percent of Gen X-ers, 43 percent of Boomers and 52 percent of plus-65 agree.

• 29 percent overall say Mr. Obama makes them feel “angry.” 19 percent of millennials, 28 percent of Gen X-ers, 32 percent of Boomers and 40 percent of plus-65 agree.

Source: A Pew Research Center poll of 2,410 U.S. adults conducted Sept. 22-Oct. 4 and released Thursday.

Tipline always open at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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