Afghanistan unrest stirs worries, but doesn’t shake commitment

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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Defense Secretary Leon Panetta re-affirmed the administration’s determination to continue seeking a stable government in Afghanistan after the murder of two U.S. military officers by an Afghan soldier inside the Interior Ministry building in Kabul.

Democrats helped McCain over finish line in 2000 Michigan GOP primary

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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Mitt Romney may be upset by Rick Santorum’s recent robo-calling for Democratic votes because in 2000, John McCain won Michigan over George W. Bush — and about 10 percent of the people who voted for McCain were Democrats.

Daily Kos poll: Americans oppose state-mandated rape for women seeking abortions

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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vaginal probe

Yes, it’s a sad commentary on the state of American politics that we had to poll this question in the first place, but here is the good news: a majority of Americans oppose state-mandated rape.

Public Policy Polling for Daily Kos & SEIU. 2/23-26. Registered voters. MoE ±3.1% (no trendlines):

Q: Would you support or oppose a law requiring women to receive a transvaginal ultrasound before getting an abortion?

Support: 23
Oppose: 52
Not sure: 24

That would be the bill passed earlier this month by the Virginia House, requiring women seeking an abortion to first submit to a state-mandated rape-by-probe—for their own good, of course, because otherwise, they might not understand there’s a baby in that there womb. Because women are, according to the pro-rape legislators of Virginia, that stupid.

Fortunately, most people in the state and around the country took the oh-so-radical position of opposing state-mandated rape, leading Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell, who had promised to sign it into law, to back away from the bill, quickly followed by the legislature bravely postponing the vote.

Despite such less-than-persuasive arguments as CNN bobblehead and Andrew Breitbart protege Dana Loesch’s insistence that rape-by-probe is no big deal, since women obviously enjoy vaginal penetration or they wouldn’t be pregnant in the first place, those arguments failed to persuade a majority of Americans who think raping women might not be such good policy after all.

While Virginia seems to have learned its lesson, this hasn’t stopped pro-rape legislators in other states—like Pennsylvania, Idaho, Michigan and Alabama—from flirting with the idea. (Although even Alabama legislators are having second thoughts, which should tell you everything you need to know about how extreme this is.) Given the unpopularity of state-mandated rape, maybe they should take a long hard look at the numbers so they can think about the consequences of their actions and what it would mean to enact rape requirements against the will of the American people. You know, because it seems they really are that stupid.


Obama, Congress leaders seek cooperation on jobs (AP)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the United Auto Workers conference in Washington February 28, 2012. 

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque  (UNITED STATES - Tags: TRANSPORT BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT POLITICS)AP – After quarreling for months, President Barack Obama and the top two Republicans in Congress expressed optimism Wednesday about finding a common jobs and energy agenda, prodded by political reality to show results in an election year.

Mitt Romney comes out against Blunt Amendment to repeal President Obama’s birth control mandate

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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Earlier this month, Mitt Romney said it was an issue of religious liberty.
 

Mitt Romney is nothing if not predictable. One day after narrowly winning Michigan’s primary by veering severely to the right, he’s apparently decided it’s time to flip-flop his way back to the middle, because he’s now decided to come out against the Blunt Amendment which would repeal President Obama’s birth control coverage mandate:

ALERT: Mitt Romney tells ONN he would not vote for senate bill which would allow employers to deny coverage for birth control.
@JimHeathONN via Twitter for BlackBerry®

(ONN is the Ohio News Network.)

Earlier this month, Romney described the birth control coverage mandate as an affront to religious liberty.

On January 20, 2012, the Obama administration affirmed a rule that would force Roman Catholic hospitals, charities, and universities to purchase health insurance for their employees that includes coverage for contraception, abortifacients, and sterilization, in violation of their religious principles. This is wrong.

In last week’s debate, he said:

I don’t think we’ve seen in the history of this country the kind of attack on religious conscience, religious freedom, religious tolerance that we’ve seen under Barack Obama. Most recently, of course, most recently requiring the Catholic Church to provide for its employees and its various enterprises health care insurance that would include birth control, sterilization and the morning-after pill. Unbelievable.

That was batshit crazy nonsense, particularly given the fact that religious groups and organizations are exempt from the rule. But given his position then, it’s remarkable that he’s now flip-flopped so dramatically. And not only did he flip-flop, he’s now saying presidential candidates shouldn’t even talk about birth control at all!

Romney says “the idea of presidential candidates getting into questions about contraception…I’m not going there.”
@JimHeathONN via Twitter for BlackBerry®

So he goes from saying the birth control requirement is a fundamental threat to religious liberty that forces churches to fund “abortifacients” to now saying he opposes the Senate legislation that would repeal it and doesn’t think it’s an issue he should be talking about? It’s simply amazing that anybody takes anything he says seriously.

2:23 PM PT: Romney’s campaign is denying that Romney opposes the Blunt Amendment. They say his views were “incorrectly reported.” But you can watch for yourself. He clearly says: “I’m against the bill.”

2:25 PM PT: Greg Sargent tries to sort through what Romney could have meant, raising the question of whether Romney might have thought he was talking about a separate measure pushed by Marco Rubio. But the question put to Romney was clearly about the mandatory coverage issue.


Ex-Sen. Kerrey to run for his former Nebraska seat (AP)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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AP – Former Sen. Bob Kerrey said Wednesday he will seek the Democratic nomination for the Nebraska seat he once held, reversing course just weeks after publicly rejecting a run he had called a longshot.

Rush: Snowe is ‘no great loss’ (Politico)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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Politico – He mocks Republicans for “panicking” about the news of Snowe’s retirement.

Analysis: Snowe departure will widen partisan gulf (AP)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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AP – The surprising retirement of moderate Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine moves congressional centrists a step closer to extinction and highlights the great paradox of American politics.

GOP race on pace for summer delegate fight (AP)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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AP – Mitt Romney got two important wins in the Arizona and Michigan primaries, but he better pick up the pace if he wants to lock up the Republican nomination for president before the party’s national convention in late August.

Santorum: Mich. a ‘huge win’ for me (Politico)

Posted by admin | Posted in Politics | Posted on 29-02-2012-05-2008

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Politico – He scored 15 of 30 delegates in the state.