- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 13, 2008

EVIL GENIE

“Liberal Democrats are going to wake up from their sadomasochistic, anti-Palin orgy with a very big hangover,” Camille Paglia writes at Salon.

“The evil genie released during this sorry episode will not so easily go back into its bottle. A shocking level of irrational emotionalism and at times infantile rage was exposed at the heart of current Democratic ideology - contradicting Democratic core principles of compassion, tolerance and independent thought. One would have to look back to the Eisenhower 1950s for parallels to this grotesque lock-step parade of bourgeois provincialism, shallow groupthink and blind prejudice.

“I like Sarah Palin, and I’ve heartily enjoyed her arrival on the national stage. As a career classroom teacher, I can see how smart she is - and quite frankly, I think the people who don’t see it are the stupid ones, wrapped in the fuzzy mummy-gauze of their own worn-out partisan dogma. … I stand on what I said (as a staunch pro-choice advocate) in my last two columns - that Palin as a pro-life wife, mother and ambitious professional represents the next big shift in feminism. Pro-life women will save feminism by expanding it, particularly into the more traditional Third World.

“As for the Democrats who sneered and howled that Palin was unprepared to be a vice-presidential nominee - what navel-gazing hypocrisy! What protests were raised in the party or mainstream media when John Edwards, with vastly less political experience than Palin, got John Kerry’s nod for veep four years ago? And Gov. Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, for whom I lobbied to be Obama’s pick and who was on everyone’s short list for months, has a record indistinguishable from Palin’s.”

Funny business

“You’d think Democrats would be content with last week’s electoral rout. But judging from the odd doings in Minnesota, some in their party wouldn’t mind adding to their jackpot by stealing a Senate seat for left-wing joker Al Franken,” the Wall Street Journal said Wednesday in an editorial.

“When Minnesotans woke up [on Nov. 5], Republican Sen. Norm Coleman led Mr. Franken by 725 votes. By that evening, he was ahead by only 477. As of [Tuesday], Mr. Coleman’s margin stood at 206. This lopsided bleeding of Republican votes is passing strange considering that the official recount hasn’t even begun,” the newspaper said.

“The vanishing Coleman vote came during a week in which election officials are obliged to double-check their initial results. Minnesota is required to do these audits, and it isn’t unusual for officials to report that they transposed a number here or there. In a normal audit, these mistakes could be expected to cut both ways. Instead, nearly every ‘fix’ has gone for Mr. Franken, in some cases under strange circumstances.

“For example, there was Friday night’s announcement by Minneapolis’s director of elections that she’d forgotten to count 32 absentee ballots in her car. The Coleman campaign scrambled to get a county judge to halt the counting of these absentees, since it was impossible to prove their integrity 72 hours after the polls closed. The judge refused on grounds that she lacked jurisdiction.

“Up in Two Harbors, another liberal outpost, Mr. Franken picked up an additional 246 votes. In Partridge Township, he racked up another 100. Election officials in both places claim they initially miscommunicated the numbers. Odd, because in the Two Harbors precinct, none of the other contests recorded any changes in their vote totals.

“According to conservative statistician John Lott, Mr. Franken’s gains so far are 2.5 times the corrections made for Barack Obama in the state, and nearly three times the gains for Democrats across Minnesota Congressional races. Mr. Lott notes that Mr. Franken’s ‘new’ votes equal more than all the changes for all the precincts in the entire state for the presidential, congressional and statehouse races combined (482 votes).”

VICTORIOUS DEBT

President-elect Barack Obama’s campaign manager, David Plouffe, on Tuesday night “sent a long-awaited note to help retire someone’s major political debt,” reporter Christina Bellantoni writes in a blog at The Washington Times online.

“No, not that debt,” Ms. Bellantoni said, adding that the Plouffe note “is not about Hillary Clinton.”

Mr. Plouffe wrote: “Our friends at the Democratic National Committee laid it all on the line to bring change this year.

“We’ve been reviewing the books, and the DNC went into considerable debt to secure victory for Barack and Joe. It took unprecedented resources to staff up all 50 states, train field organizers, and build the technology to reach as many swing voters as possible.

“It worked.

“But it also left the DNC in debt. So before we do anything else, we need to help pay for this winning strategy.”

Mr. Plouffe added: “Please make a donation of $30 or more today and receive your Obama Victory T-shirt.”

Ms. Bellantoni observed: “What’s notable is that Team Obama never sent this kind of e-mail on behalf of Clinton. She still had $21 million in debt as of her last FEC filing, and helped the president-elect raise big bucks during the general election.

“Also worth mentioning, the e-mail did not go to the campaign’s entire distribution list.”

OFF LIMITS

John Edwards didn’t have to dodge tough questions from an Indiana University audience Tuesday, when the former presidential candidate returned to the stage three months after admitting to an extramarital affair.

The Democrat’s speech covered politics, poverty and his hopes for America and the world and he later discussed President-elect Barack Obama and other topics from the audience. But the question-and-answer period featured only written queries that had been submitted before his speech.

The affair he acknowledged with filmmaker Rielle Hunter wasn’t mentioned. After his public statements in August, Mr. Edwards said he did not plan to speak about the affair again.

In response to other questions from the audience, he praised Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s leadership and said his favorite superhero was Superman.

• Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or Greg Pierce.

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