Monday, December 31, 2007
January 8th is going to be legendary.
The 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th are going to be pretty raucous too.
Can Iowa hurry up and vote already please?
We have bread that we want to break with all sorts of folks currently in the Hawkeye State.
h/t the Blogettes for the pic of the Newport Town Hall.
"This Is An Evolving Strategy" (But I'm Still Positive & Romney Is Still A Phony Who Misrepresents The Facts)
Jon Martin and Mark Halperin covered Huckabee's presser in Iowa earlier today.
And, to put it mildly, it was confusing.
But it was certainly not a meltdown (nice try Mitt).
And it might even get Huck some "interesting" (defined as the narrative that is contained within the parentheses of our post title above) earned media in the next 24 hours.
Time will tell.
But before media and campaign professionals get all "the bubble has burst on Huckabee in Iowa" remember that the former Arkansas Governor has been doing it his way all along.
And Huck is still in a statistical dead heat with Mitt Romney in Iowa after being outspent 4,000,000,000,o000 to 1. And after having been totally ignored (or written-off) by those same professionals until 5 months ago.
So before anyone passes (public) judgment on what Team Huckabee Iowa is up to, why not wait until Thursday night?
It's going to be a squeaker.
h/t The Page for the pic
Meet J. Warren Tompkins, a top Romney political adviser in the Palmetto State.
The kind of guy that will say and do anything to get his man elected.
The kind of guy who might play well on a team that believes anonymously phone testing a bunch of negative messages about their own candidate on the eve of a big religious speech in Texas and then blaming rival campaigns for the phone calls would be a good idea.
h/t The Palmetto Scoop
Yeah, this is the 2nd trip down the GMP1 pipe for Modest Mouse, Kanye and the Peppers.
But these songs f*cking rock.
So f*cking crank it up in your field office (and tell management to "chill out").
And thank God that the NH microwave is almost over.
Happy Monday everyone!
Sunday, December 30, 2007
A subliminal message in an ad (or blog post) might work.
But then again, it might not.
Just as the subliminal message might be intentionally done by the ad's creator.
Or it might be nothing more than the viewer's overactive imagination.
In this example we just don't see the upside for Romney.
Team Romney's 11th hour anti-McCain ads in New Hampshire are not so much aimed at pulling people from Johnny Mac as they are aimed at keeping Romney supporters from jumping ship to McCain's Big Mo. And we don't believe that a "McCain as rat" (huh?) subliminal narrative would be all that effective in this instance.
Sleazy. But not terribly effective.
But what if this story were to jump from Race 4 2008 and GMP1 to the AP and CNN?
Well, what if it does?
That would matter to a candidate with limited resources. But Romney doesn't have to rely on earned media to get his message out, he just buys as much paid media as he wants (and we know Romney thanks God every day for that).
Translation: If Team Romney wants to spent the next 9 days talking about Romney and McCain having the exact same position on immigration (snark) they will simply buy the airtime and do so.
So is Alex Castellanos too cute by half?
But we think that it's meaningless either way.
Now excuse us, we're going to go play Stairway To Heaven backwards.
(h/t to Race 4 2008 for a good catch at what could be, or might not be, an example of an attempt at subliminal messaging)
That's not our headline.
It's (more or less) the Union Leader's headline (or could be).
A journey that started almost 8 years ago with a sketch on the back of a cocktail napkin by two friends dedicated to seeing an American hero elected President is entering its end stage.
And now is the time for the final push in New Hampshire.
Which is how several hundred members of the McCain organization found themselves in Johnny Mac's Manchester campaign office this morning, cheering the good Senator on.
And gearing up to kick ass and take names.
January 8th is going to be epic.
For all the right reasons.
Huck On Mitt: "If You Aren't Being Honest In Obtaining The Job, Can We Trust You To Be Honest If You Get The Job?"
So asked Governor Huckabee on Meet this morning.
And our answer is, "absolutely not".
Just another day.
Just another newspaper endorsement in New Hampshire for McCain.
This time it's The Nashua Telegraph.
h/t Chris Fitzgerald of Candidate Photos for the McCain shot at a townhall yesterday.
Saturday, December 29, 2007
Give Governor Fee Fee credit.
When Team Romney goes "stupid", at least they go all in.
Yesterday they sent out an email that blasted the Union Leader and asked their supporters to call the paper to complain.
Today its the Concord Monitor's turn.
The NH Gang of 15's tongues are awagging
Romney '08 as Titanic?
Iceberg. Dead ahead.
(FLASH) We have breaking news that Team Romney is currently in high-level strategy meetings about when/how to "take the fight" to Panther Prints, Nashua High School South's school newspaper.
A senior Romney official told us, "We've had our eye on Panther Prints for some time. We feel that Prints unfairly targets Governor Romney by completely ignoring the Governor's plan for positive change in America. The Governor has spread around far too much of his own money in this election to be ignored by some upstart school paper. If Panther Prints wants a fight, well by God we'll give them a fight!"
More information as it becomes available.
Finally, a legitimate Gang of 500 member "gets" Huckabee's appeal.
And Huck's heart is one very big reason why we've always thought that the Huckster might very well go deeeeeep (all the way?) in the GOP Primary.
Which is why the GOP establishment is in an absolute tizzy.
Which is why Josh Bolten isn't answering questions about "email exchanges".
Which is why...
We take terrible pictures.
But we know what momentum looks like when we see it.
And this is what we saw on the ground in New Hampshire this morning.
And please don't forget the 350+ likely primary voters already inside.
This story will not win us a Pulitzer.
But what the hell, it's fun.
Last night, GMP1 joined several people at Manchester's Commercial Street Fishery for drinks.
Noted: It a very good restaurant. Centrally located. Good food. Absolutely perfect for all the Gang of 500 expense accounts about to come flooding into town the night of January 3rd.
When we took a break from merrymaking and stepped outside the restaurant to enjoy a cigarette (live free or die), we were joined by a member of the Fishery wait staff who was also intent on enjoying some tobacco.
And the two of us got to talking.
It turns out that the Fishery is a popular spot with candidates and their campaign staffs.
But our smoking friend remembered two candidates in particular - Hillary Clinton, because of her Secret Service protection. And Barack Obama, because one night he and his staff stiffed the bar totally on their bar tab and left only "about 5%" on a large dinner tab.
And our new friend was absolutely fired-up (get it?) about it.
For everyone except the wait staff at the Fishery.
So here's a free tip to everyone running for office - tip large and tip visibly. In fact, tip very large and very visibly.
Hillary Clinton knows the score.
We think Obama might start too.
Friday, December 28, 2007
The editors of National Review just went potty - or tried to - on the New Hampshire press corp over Mitt Romney.
Look, we have a hell of a lot of respect for The National Review. It's a quality news outlet.
And when we're dining at the Chevy Chase Club after a few sets of tennis and a stiff 18 hole marathon, we're sure that NR's world view, as seen from their perches in DC/NYC, will come in real handy.
But this isn't about Scotch & Sodas in Maryland, this is about grassroots politicking in New Hampshire.
And about who really knows what.
20 newspapers in the New Hampshire market have endorsed John McCain for President.
20 newspapers that spent the last 2 years (or more) watching each presidential candidate closely.
20 newspapers that took a pass on Mitt Romney.
It's not just the Union Leader, it's not just the Concord Monitor's anti-endorsement and it's not just the Boston papers.
It's 20 newspapers.
And while we are quite sure that The National Review is privately quite embarrassed to have "zigged" when everyone else "zagged", their new editorial is just plain sad.
Because all it does is reiterate the fact that Romney's political support is one mile wide. And one inch deep.
We're just saying.
(UPDATED) Team Romney - foolishly (in our humble opinion) - is jumping into this fight in a very public way, by blasting out emails telling their supporters to call the UL and complain.
Which begs the question: Does Team Romney ask their supporters to call the other 19 NH based newspapers and complain?
Here is their email that just hit our mailbox:
Dear New Hampshire voter,
This morning, National Review, the leading conservative magazine in America, criticized The Union Leader for using an absurd double standard in their attacks on Governor Mitt Romney.
As National Review noted, "The Union Leader 's advocacy of John McCain has become so fierce and lopsided that it has practically transformed itself into a pro-McCain 527 organization."
With the New Hampshire primary just 11 days away, it is crucial that people understand the honest differences between Governor Romney's record and Sen. McCain's. Help us by forwarding this email to as many friends and family members as you can, and please take a moment to call or email The Union Leader and tell them that the people of New Hampshire deserve the whole truth, not just one candidate's side of the story.
Call The Union Leader today at ( 603) 668-4321 or (800) 562-8218 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and share your views on your support for Governor Romney.
On the issues, National Review concluded:
Taxes: "Senator McCain … voted against the tax cuts, as he had voted against the 2001 tax cuts. He flip-flopped on estate taxes, defending them after having voted to get rid of them. As he geared up to run for president this time around, however, McCain became a born-again supply-sider. Now he wants to keep the tax cuts he originally opposed."
Immigration: " … Romney was right. McCain has voted to let illegal immigrants who meet certain conditions become citizens and then receive benefits for their prior illegal work. Few Senate Republicans joined him."
Thank you for all your help! The support of people like you will make all the difference on Jan. 8.
The New Hampshire Romney for President Team
Noted: You know we've been waiting 13 months to break that post title out.
It's well known that pornography is a major driver of Internet innovation.
And Portfolio.com's Claire Hoffman has an excellent, very safe for work piece on what Web 2.0 is doing to Flesh Valley.
Which is somewhat similar to what Web 2.0 is doing to the Gang of 500.
Rise Of The Amateur.
This story might be so a couple of weeks ago.
And the Union Leader (or the NH GOP) might not be ready to scream it from the rooftops just yet.
But GMP1's sources tell us that all the major GOP candidates have told Fox that they will participate in the January 6th debate in New Hampshire.
Might we suggest that Team Romney take a look at John 8:7.
And Jon 12/27.
And one more thing for all you "budding" GOP operatives out there - tax cuts are great, and they motivate the base.
But tax cuts have to be coupled with spending cuts or the whole "Look at me! Look at me! I'm a good fiscal conservative!" is a bullsh*t lie.
So what do you think we think of the Bush tax cuts? And Bush's (formerly) Republican Congress?
(UPDATED) Soren Dayton explores the flip-flop angle of Romney's new negative ad.
But where is Soren's advice to "budding" GOP operatives?
(UPDATED) McCain is also up with a new NH ad today, one which strikes a more positive tone.
Of course, when you don't have to fake it to make it, you can run more positive ads.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Mitt Romney put out a statement this afternoon responding to the Union Leader's latest edi...
Wait, hold on a second...
Mitt Romney didn't put out the statement?
It was Kevin Madden, Romney's spokesperson, who put out the statement?
But they look so alike. Like, really alike.
Well excuse us.
So it turns out that Kevin Madden put out a statement this afternoon responding to the UL's latest anti-Romney editorial.
And in it Madden pits Romney's Beltway media elite against (almost all) the Granite State media.
Which is a tough sell in the New Hampshire Primary.
Of course, that's Mitt's problem.
Everyone knows that ABC/WMUR/Facebook is hosting a Granite State debate on January 5th (Rs & Ds).
GMP1 is now hearing that Fox wants to host their own debate the following night, possibly at St. Anselm College, just for the Republicans.
We're all for (substantive) debates, but this might be a little much.
Rumor, rumor on the wall, is this total baloney?
(UPDATED) One of our best friends in NH (and one of NH's best reporters) writes to tell us that this story is "so a couple of weeks ago".
And to prove his point, he shot us the article that he wrote about the competition between ABC and Fox over the January debates back in November.
And, by all accounts, it looks as though the ABC debate has won out over the Fox debate.
But, we are still hearing that several GOP campaigns are keeping their January 6th schedules flexible in case the Fox debate happens.
Or, at least try to.
Noted: The back and forth starts about 7 minutes in.
The New Hampshire Union Leader tees-off on Mitt Romney.
And while the UL might be the leader of the anti-Romney band, it's far from the only member in the band.
Which makes the New Hampshire earned media hurricane Mitt Romney is currently whirling around in that much harder to break out of.
But it's not all bad for Team Romney. They got National Review's endorsement.
And, maybe NR knows something that the New Hampshire press doesn't?
We figure that NR's editors must have spent a solid 3 or 4 hours sipping wine and gobbling steak with the highest levels of Team Romney in some fancy-dancy DC eatery before crowning Willard with their endorsement.
Of course, the New Hampshire press corps has only been watching Romney up close for the last several years.
We have to wonder what National Review was thinking.
Pass the whipped mashed potatoes?
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has proved, yet again, that you can't fake a Newsmaker interview on the NewsHour.
And while Reid's Friday interview with Ray Suarez might have gotten lost in the pre-Christmas rush, it's worth a second look now.
If only to make yourself feel really uncomfortable.
As you watch a man under fire and without a clue try to cram as many talking points as he possibly can into every sentence that comes out of his mouth.
Making the end result an embarrassing mishmash of nonsensical nothing.
It's time for the Senate Democrats to start looking elsewhere for new leadership.
Welcome back to the microwave everyone.
Now who's ready to sprint?
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
The Concord Monitor absolutely unloads on Mitt in tomorrow's editorial.
The final three lines:
"If a candidate is a phony, we assure ourselves and the rest of the world, we'll know it. Mitt Romney is such a candidate. New Hampshire Republicans and independents must vote no."
That's going to leave a mark.
And drive a lot of New Hampshire earned media over the next 17 days.
Pure. Political. Brutality.
Friday, December 21, 2007
Going up on NH TV shortly.
The ad reminds us of those long, late night conversations we had in our college dormitory so many years ago:
"But dude, seriously, do you think we have to become part of the machine to change the machine?"
2 minute pause. And then the answer:
"Who knows. God is dead. Pass the Subs N Stuff menu."
Obviously, Hillary believes the answer (and the only answer she can give) is "yes" - you can't change the machine without already being a part of (and knowing) the machine.
We know that Obama/Edwards will argue "no", but is that a (totally) fair answer coming from two U.S. Senators?
USA Today/Gallup is out with a new poll this morning in New Hampshire.
Showing the whole damn race is fluid.
But Team Obama and Team McCain have to be walking tall this morning.
And Team Clinton and Team Romney not (and Rudy waving bu-bye).
18 days to go.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Of course, only in the figurative sense.
The DNC is just holding its breath and hoping oh so hard that Romney is the Republican nominee.
Of course, wishing doesn't make it so.
Unless your name is Mitt Romney.
A reader asked us to post this.
And we will. Happily.
It turns out that every year thousands of holiday care packages and cards are sent to "A Recovering American Soldier (or some variant of)" by well meaning citizens.
It's a great idea. Service men and woman in our hospitals need all the care and love that we can give them.
Unfortunately, this is a problem.
And in response, a 2001 Department of Defense policy forbids the delivery of generically addressed mail to service members.
Instead, the DOD asks that holiday cheer makers go here to find out ways that they can support our troops during the holidays and throughout the year.
So go ahead and spread the cheer.
You'll be happy you did. And (more importantly) so will the people on the receiving end.
Just make sure you do it correctly.
Happy Holidays everyone.
"We've been very clear about the fact that Florida is our strategy. The rules just don't apply. That's what people don't understand.""We've been very clear"?
Remember, "We've been clear" and "It's always been obvious" are not the same thing.
Of course, these quotes are coming from Team Giuliani before the Primary. When the campaign is still "probing" New Hampshire (whatever that means less than 3 weeks out).
What does New Hampshire think Team Rudy's quotes are going to be the day after the New Hampshire Primary?
Let us tell you what we think.
From a purely technical standpoint, this is one of the best Web 2.0 campaign videos to come out of any campaign so far.
Very well done.
From a purely personal standpoint, we have to disagree with Ms. McCain slightly. Relationships can be maintained on the campaign trail, but its' just about the hardest thing you've ever done.
Ms. Raitt was in New Hampshire yesterday stumping for John Edwards.
And we bumped into her, very briefly, last night at The Chop House.
And yeah, we were starstruck.
That voice? That talent? Those looks?
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Who bets against a guy who spent 5 years in a box in a jungle all because of something called "honor" and all in the name of something called a "code"?
We sure as hell don't. And we never did.
And by the way, 31 - 27 (yeah it's Rasmussen, and yeah we don't like polls, but still).
A new national poll shows that Rudy Giuliani is officially in serious, serious trouble.
All because of a man from Hope, Arkansas. How ironic.
We wonder if Team Romney sent a bottle of bubbly over to Team Giuliani along with their welcome note?
Did anyone else's eyes glaze over when they read this?
All we want to know is does the NH Attorney General know who is behind the negative Romney calls or not.
Couldn't be simpler.
Let's keep it that way.
And answer the question in (real) short order.
We don't like polls.
So we take this with a grain of salt. Because what matters is what happens in the voting booth on election day.
Of course, John McCain is the candidate most qualified to be President.
And we have always believed that NH voters, as fickle as they are, know that.
And that they will reward McCain accordingly when it really matters.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Monday, December 17, 2007
Nobody believed that we'd be anywhere but on-the-ground in New Hampshire for the final push did they?
See you at Strange Brew Tavern Team Whoever.
And we'll be seeing your candidate on the trail.
Halperin has George Stephanopoulos' network news remarks on Mike Huckabee's new Christmas ad:
ABC: Terry Moran from NH covering Lieberman-McCain endorsement, called overall GOP race a “culture clash” between conservative Christians (behind Huckabee) and fiscal conservatives, still up for grabs. Moran called new Huckabee ad “extraordinary” for including Christ reference. Also mentioned Romney ad and brief NH visit by Giuliani, scored because he didn’t take questions and that “doesn’t go over well.” Kate Snow reported from Iowa, mentioned “softer side” Clinton rally and new TV ad, plus new Obama ad.
ABC’s Stephanopoulos called Huckabee Christmas ad “just ingenious,” will make any Romney attack ads appear “Scrooge-like.” Gibson also mentioned Paul’s huge best-in-show fundraising take.
Now where did we read that already today?
The AP headline reads: "Romney's Eyes Fill With Tears As He Envisions A Son Dying In Iraq"
GMP1's headline reads: "Romney Doesn't Have To Worry About Any Of His 5 Sons Dying In Iraq Because They Slumber Peacefully On 500 Thread Count Civilian Sheets Every Night"
The guy is absolutely shameless.
And this isn't even his first ride at this particular rodeo.
We have one question for Team Romney staffers - How. Do. You. Work. For. This. Guy?
And unless your answer is "My kids would starve otherwise", you need to take a good long look at what you're doing.
And who you're working for.
And have a little self-respect.
We're just saying.
(UPDATED) A blogger that we respect wrote in with some constructive criticism of this post.
His wrote that we are taking a "cheap shot" at a legitimate attempt by Romney to express "empathy".
And, if this AP article had been written about any other candidate running for President, we would (probably) agree with our friend and we would have never written the post.
But this is not "any other candidate running for President", this is Mitt Romney.
And he has a long record of saying absolutely anything, and everything, in his quest to harvest votes.
And we think that this is just one more example.
Someone in Hillary Land is a big Robert Caro fan.
Noted: Who isn't?
Because in 1948, as described in Caro's book Means of Ascent, Lyndon Johnson famously used a helicopter ("Come see Lyndon and the incredible flying bird!") to help beat former Texas Governor Coke Stevenson in a U.S. Senate race.
Of course along with the helicopter, Landslide Lyndon also paid good cash money to stuff ballot boxes in several Texas border towns.
Johnson won by 87 votes. Total.
But who's counting?
H/T Ben Smith for the photo.
Huck's new ad going up in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina tomorrow.
The Huck knows his earned and paid media.
And Team Romney just lost their lunch in a Iowa/New Hampshire/South Carolina bathroom (and so would Team Giuliani if they yet understood how in trouble they were with Huckabee as well).
Because how in God's name do you go negative on the celebration of the birth of Christ and being with your family over the holidays?
17 days till Iowa.
(UPDATED) Mitt's also up with a new ad in Iowa. A negative compare/contrast ad with Huck. An ad that talks about Meth and murderers.
Bad timing Team Romney.
Very bad timing.
Though we have never had the pleasure of meeting New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, we are aware of her excellent reputation as a no-nonsense public servant.
However, we feel that it is time for Ms. Ayotte to finally release the results of her office's negative call probe in New Hampshire.
For the last four weeks, New Hampshire's chattering classes have been chattering about who is behind the calls.
The rumors have been intense and, frankly, have centered around one particular candidate.
GMP1 made a consciousness decision early on to not repeat the rumors on this blog. Believe it or not, that's not what we're about.
But it's time for Ms. Ayotte to put a stop to the rumor mongering and release what she has, or has not, found out.
Her office has had more than enough time for an investigation of this nature.
And with only 22 days until the New Hampshire Primary, Granite State voters deserve to know what the AG's office knows.
A report released after the New Hampshire Primary is meaningless.
Ms. Attorney General, please tell us what you know.
Right now the Democrats are all about Iowa.
And right now the Gang of 500 is all about Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama, Clint...
Wait, what's that?
John Edwards has got what?
Iowa's first lady has decided to back Johnny?
Cue the "John Edwards has proved, yet again, that Iowa is a 3-person race" chatter.
Wait 24 hours.
And then watch as the Gang of 500 goes back to Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama.
It's all fairly silly. But that's not our point.
Our point is that Edwards can just as easily win Iowa as can Clinton or Obama. This has always been true. And it should remain true up until January 3rd. No matter what the Gang of 500 is pontificating about at any particular time.
Let's assume (while trying not to make an ass out of u or me) that Edwards does win Iowa.
New Hampshire is 5 days later. Where Edwards has lagged in the polls, about 15 points off front-runner Clinton.
Now we would argue, having spent the last 14 months on the ground in New Hampshire, that Edwards has lagged behind Clinton and Obama in the Granite State not because he hasn't put in the time in New Hampshire or built the organization, but because Clinton and Obama have sucked up all (most) of the available political oxygen.
Clinton and Obama, at this time, are just "shinier" to New Hampshire voters. Which definitely counts. Until it doesn't.
So back to our "Edwards wins Iowa" assumption.
That's a pretty shine producing move on Edwards part. And a pretty un-shining move on Clinton and Obama's part.
Especially after all the Clinton, Obama, Clinton, Obama talk.
So, on the night of January 3rd, newly shiny Edwards gets on a plane for New Hampshire.
And, when Edwards lands in Manchester, he lands in the open arms of a political organization that is ready, willing and able to capitalize on their guy's new found shininess.
That counts. And that counts big time.
In fact, it counts (in our very humble opinion) right around 15 points.
So if Iowa is a 3-person race, which it most certainly is, New Hampshire is a 3-person race as well.
At least until January 3rd.
The Nashua Telegraph's Kevin Landrigan had it yesterday.
The Washington Post has it today.
Of course, Pindell and GreenMountainPolitics1 had it back in May.
But who's counting?
Because who didn't see this coming?
Title of Mail Piece: Another Idaho Wide Stance
Caption: Monday Morning Clacker instructs American Special Forces on the proper use of a assault rifle.
We couldn't resist.
And just so we're clear. The gentleman standing beside us is the expert. And doing his level best to make sure that we don't hurt ourself. Badly.
Which is reason #1,293 why we love him.
And why we always will.
Congratulations my friend, you two will be very happy together.
Now who's getting married next?
Sunday, December 16, 2007
On Meet this morning Mitt Romney again called on Mike Huckabee to apologize for Huck's recent criticisms of certain White House foreign policy decisions.
Specifically, Willard has his boxers in a wad over Huck's comments that the Bush White House occasionally acts with a "arrogant bunker mentality" that has damaged American prestige around the globe.
Does anyone not agree with Huck's comments about Bush and his team (besides the guy trying peddle and pander his way to the GOP nomination)?
Does anyone not remember the neocon clowns who had the run of the White House, the Navel Observatory, Foggy Bottom and the Pentagon from (about) 2001 to (about) 2006?
Blundering. Whoopsie daisy. Clowns.
So seriously, raise your hand and prepare to get laughed at if you don't and you can't.
Because we're laughing at Willard every single day.
The Globe's editorial is here.
The Des Moines Register's editorial is here.
Of course, the two dead tree publications are not telling us anything that we didn't know already.
Johnny Mac is the Republican candidate most deserving of the GOP nomination.
He always has been.
Saturday, December 15, 2007
This post has absolutely zero to do with politics.
Because we're quite sure that we couldn't put two coherent sentences together right now (although some of our readership would probably argue that it's par for the course).
Last night, at the Pioneer Saloon in beautiful downtown Ketchum, we fancied ourself back in college.
As we sat drinking "The Bar" with six members of a West Coast SEAL Team come to town to celebrate the wedding of our friend.
Absolutely great guys. Top shelf.
Noted: Topics of conversation: Iran, McCain, Secretary Rice, Washington DC not being a meritocracy, skiing v. snowboarding.
And this morning two things are abundantly clear - we're not 22 anymore. And we're certainly not SF (they were all up at 7am for a "easy hike" up 3,000 vertical feet of rock, just because).
But last night makes one hell of a story.
Now where is the aspirin?
Friday, December 14, 2007
Mitt Romney's path to the GOP nomination begins and ends in the early voting states.
Rudy Giuliani's path to the GOP nomination begins and ends with keeping his national poll numbers high enough to survive early voting state losses and make it to the Florida and February 5th contests still (mostly) intact.
Noted: Yes, yes, HRC and RG have a symbiotic relationship. We get it. And it's important in the GOP primary. But Rudy's real power to keep and hold the GOP primary faithful is, and always has been, his front runner status in national polls. Everyone loves a winner.
Over the last few weeks, Mitt Romney has watched as Huckabee has overtaken him in Iowa.
Much to Team Giuliani's delight.
Now Team Romney is watching as Huckabee creeps up on front runner Giuliani in the national polls.
To the point where Huck is within 3.5 points of Hiz Honor in the RCP average.
And if Huck passes Rudy and becomes the new national front runner, any last hope of Team Rudy's that Hiz Honor would make Florida and February 5th without an early state win, is gone.
Or, as Team Romney might say to Team Giuliani, "Welcome to the party, boys!".
Thursday, December 13, 2007
GMP1 is currently en route to Sun Valley, Idaho for a wedding (not our wedding, just so everyone is clear).
But a "very best friend's wedding". One that we would do absolutely anything for. Because there is nothing better, or more important, than one's friends.
And we are checking in, briefly, from the lovely Salt Lake City airport.
This is the first time we've managed to get online in about 10 hours.
And good Lord is there a lot of stuff going on:
Billy Shaheen quits Clinton's campaign, the DNC sends out a hit piece on Huck, Team Mitt refers to themselves as the "underdog" in Iowa, the Democrats debated in Iowa, no one knows who Huck's endorsement tomorrow in NH is, McCain gets the endorsement of a newspaper chain, Bob Novak is still a flailing old nut, Rudy's got an immigration ad hitting in NH and Huckabee has tied Hiz Honor in a new national poll.
And we haven't even touched our emails.
GMP1 will be back up tomorrow.
Live from the bro-bra ski capitol of the world (one of them anyway).
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Forget our usual snark for a moment.
Forget our usual dislike of Mitt Romney for a moment.
Forget about what the NYC/LA/DC based Gang of 500 thinks or doesn't think about all this.
Forget about what we personally think about all this.
And personally, we couldn't give a sh*t one way or another about a candidate's religion (unless it's Scientology, that's where we draw the line).
This story is an unmitigated DISASTER for Mitt Romney.
Because now, thanks to this tempest in a teapot over what Huckabee said to the NY Times reporter, the entire political press corps has carte blanche to cover every single last angle of Romney's religion.
And they will.
So now the voters in Iowa and South Carolina are hearing "MORMON!" every time they see Mitt Romney's face on TV.
And in Iowa and in South Carolina, even in 2007, that is going to hurt.
And it's going to hurt bad.
h/t Marc Ambinder for the video.
The guy is just an absolute machine when it comes to giving a reporter good (aka paper selling) quotes.
"Did Obama sell drugs?"
Noted: Here is a picture we took of Mr. Shaheen at the Merrimack Diner last spring.
And we'll leave our (sorta) famous encounter with Bill Shaheen at just that - a picture.
And no story.
Romney is going back up on the air in Michigan.
Noted: "Panic? Who said anything about panic? I'm not panicking! Who said I was panicking? Do you think I'm panicking? I'm simply responding. Responding, dammit!"
CW holds that Michigan is (should be) Romney country.
But before you hop on that wagon, make sure you check in with what Soren Dayton has to say.
We're not convinced that those out of work laborers are (ever) going to rally around the CEO's son.
And with no Democrat primary...
Paging the populist?