Well our cup runneth over. I thought it was interesting that DNC Chairman Tim Kaine, when presented with a number of ads that Democrats are running, touting their opposition to President Obama's health care reform, he said, 'look, I don't tell Democrats how to run their races, and so they're free to do whatever they want,'. This is even though Kaine thinks they ought to be bragging about it, nonetheless, this is called everyman for himself.
I loved Lisa Murkowski and Jim DeMint because you had both sides of the Republican party, as you know DeMint is the big king maker of the tea party candidates, andLisa Murkowski got toppled by a tea party candidate, he had some harsh words for her, and I think what I loved about DeMint when I asked him about a candidate for 2012 and kind of ran through Newt Gingrich, and who do you like here, he mentioned, Gov. Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey, but then he said, 'you know, I'm looking for some kind of cross between Winston Churchill and Ronald Reagan, so the search is on there.
And finally, Murkowski, her general defiance, and her belief that the people of Alaska really want her to run as a write-in candidate, she had some harsh words for DeMint, but basically wanted to stay away from that argument and say, 'no this is all about Alaska,' so all in all, we politicos love this kind of thing.
SUNDAY SHOW HIGHLIGHTS
Sen. Jim DeMint, on CNN’s “State of the Union”
“We spent too much. We borrowed too much. And, frankly, if we get the majority again, even if it's just in the House and we don't do what we say, I think the Republican Party is dead. And the urgency for me here is the Democrat Party, and I know this sounds partisan or completely dysfunctional, they're the left of Europe.”
Sen. Jim DeMint, on CNN’s “State of the Union,” on 2012 election
“I'm looking for someone that's almost like a Governor Christie in New Jersey, who's willing to tell people the hard truth, that the federal government can't do any more; we've got to do less if you want to save our country and fight the fights against the union bosses.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, on CNN’s “State of the Union”
“Well, let me tell you, Jim DeMint or the Tea Party Express coming out of California, far be it for them to determine whether or not the senator representing the people of Alaska is conservative enough for them. What I'm trying to do, what I'm trying to do is represent the people of my state. So, you know, maybe - maybe from Jim DeMint's perspective, you know, I'm not conservative enough for him. But the question is, do I represent the values of the people of the state thatI represent? Do I stand for what they value?”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, on CNN’s “State of the Union”
“A write-in process is absolutely a part of that electoral process. I am listening to my constituents. That's what it's all about. It's not trying to make the Republican Party happy. It's not trying to make Jim DeMint happy. It's trying to respond to the people of the state of Alaska.”
DNC Chairman Tim Kaine, on CNN’s “State of the Union”
“You know the history, mid-terms, since Teddy Roosevelt was president; the norm is you lose 28 House seats and four Senate seats. We're going to lose seats. We're not living in average times. When the economy is tough, that means that there's volatility in the electorate. And we definitely see it. But I don't think you're going to see us lose either house, because I think we've got good candidates. I think the Republicans are moving way to the right of the American electorate. And we're pretty good at the field side of politics, which is what we're focused on between now and November 2.”
A tempest in the tea pot for the Republican Party this week continued to play out on the Sunday shows. Defeated Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski had her say in this hour, but elsewhere she got blistered for her post-primary decision to run for re-election as a write in candidate. Karl Rove on “Fox News Sunday”: “No, she's going to lose. Now, the bigger, more important question is is she going to keep a Republican from winning. Who would have thought that one of the most conservative states in the country ran the risk of having two liberal Democrats who follow the Obama line representing it in the United States Senate? And that's what she could do as a spoilsport. This is sad and sorry. She should not be doing this.”
The tea party backed republican who beat Murkowski got roughed up himself. Joe Miller fended off accusations from Murkowski and others that he supports radical things like his position that federally funded unemployment benefits are unconstitutional . Joe Miller on “Fox News Sunday”: “What we have in this country is an entitlement mentality. It's an entitlement not just at the individual but even at the state level, that if all goes wrong, it's the federal government's role to get in there and provide for the general welfare, to basically provide for the solvency particularly of states and other entities - the auto companies, the banks - everything else that fails, the government should be involved in bailing out.”
Opposition to federal unemployment benefits when the jobless rate is 9.6 percent is just the kind of thing that has democrats salivating over senate seats that once seemed lost in Alaska, Delaware, Kentucky, and Nevada. One of the democrats’ best political analysts joined in the tea party dissection this morning. Former President Bill Clinton, on NBC’s “Meet the Press”:
“The question is, what are the specifics? What really matters is what we're gonna do. And right now they've elected a lot of people who are articulate and attractive but it's not clear what there specifics are. The gentleman who beat Sen. Murkowski in Alaska as I understand it said that he thought unemployment compensation was unconstitutional. Well putting 10 million more people on bread lines is not my idea of how to bring the economy back or balance the budget.”
And, for the president whose approval rating on the economy has sunk to 40 percent some, semi-friendly advice from a marquee player in the GOP. Colin Powell, who supported the president's campaign, but presumably remains a republican suggests a course correction: Former Secretary of State, Colin Powell, on NBC’s “Meet the Press”: “But the president also I think has to shift the way in which he has been doing things. I think the American people feel that too many programs have come down. There are so many rocks in our knapsack now that we're having trouble carrying it. I think the president has to, like a like a razor blade, just go right after the single issue that is uppermost in the minds of the American people, and that's employment. And he's done a lot with health care, with cap-and-trade, with education. And I understand the importance of all of that. But as far as the American People are concerned, the main attack is employment… I think he’s lost some of the ability to connect that he had during the campaign.”