CNN's GUT CHECK for October 18, 2012
October 18th, 2012
05:04 PM ET
6 years ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for October 18, 2012

CNN's GUT CHECK | for October 18, 2012 | 5 p.m.
n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

BREAKING: CNN's Peter Hamby reports that Mitt Romney is moving staff out of North Carolina, banking on a win in the state which hosted Barack Obama's convention last month. “With the increasingly widening polls in North Carolina, we will continue to allocate resources, including key senior staff, to other states,” said Romney spokeswoman Sarah Pompei. Make your own map

BORN IN THE USA: Clinton hits Romney at an Obama campaign event headlined by Bruce Springsteen… “This is the first time in my life I ever got to be the warm up act for Bruce Springsteen. … I am qualified because I was born in the USA and unlike one of the candidates for president, I keep all my money here.” (Note: No mention from the former president on where he gets his speaking fees).

WHAT WOMEN WANT: A new poll shows women who are registered to vote in a dozen key states have very different priorities than their male counterparts. The USA Today/Gallup survey found that economic issues are important to both genders, but women see one issue as more important. Nearly four in ten – 39% – of women said abortion is the most important issue in this election, the survey said, while a similar number – 38% – of men ranked jobs as their top issue. – Gregory Wallace

(Answer below)
The United States purchased Alaska from Russia on this day in 1867. The cost of purchasing the remote and difficult to defend Alaska was miniscule. What price per acre did the United States pay?

MARK (@PrestonCNN) & MICHELLE (@MJaconiCNN)
What caught our eye today in politics

There is nothing more indicative of the state of the media than the current kerfuffle over Candy Crowley’s fact-checking during the town hall debate. A journalist pointing out undeniable facts in a political event is not news, it’s our job. The fact that Crowley said Romney was right on one point and wrong on the other has been left out of the meme that conservatives are pushing in popular culture outlets. Time for a Gut Check America, please read for yourself the debate transcript:

ROMNEY: I - I think interesting the president just said something which - which is that on the day after the attack he went into the Rose Garden and said that this was an act of terror.

OBAMA: That's what I said.

ROMNEY: You said in the Rose Garden the day after the attack, it was an act of terror. It was not a spontaneous demonstration, is that what you're saying?

OBAMA: Please proceed governor.

ROMNEY: I want to make sure we get that for the record because it took the president 14 days before he called the attack in Benghazi an act of terror.

OBAMA: Get the transcript.

CROWLEY: It - it - it - he did in fact, sir. So let me - let me call it an act of terror...

OBAMA: Can you say that a little louder, Candy?

CROWLEY: He - he did call it an act of terror. It did as well take - it did as well take two weeks or so for the whole idea there being a riot out there about this tape to come out. You are correct about that.

ROMNEY: This - the administration - the administration indicated this was a reaction to a video and was a spontaneous reaction.

CROWLEY: It did.

And the CNN story breaking down the time line.

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics: Romney in a bind over 'binders of women' comment
Mitt Romney is in a bind over binders. The Republican presidential nominee is being challenged about the details of hiring women to top government positions when he won election as governor of Massachusetts in 2002, giving a possible late boost to efforts by President Barack Obama's campaign to strengthen its support among female voters. – Tom Cohen

Leading Drudge: Gallup: R 52% O 45%

Leading HuffPo: Doesn't Add Up
Mitt Romney's proposed cap on itemizing tax deductions could not on its own raise enough new government tax revenue to compensate for revenues lost by the Republican presidential candidate's plan to slash income tax rates, a think tank said on Wednesday. The Tax Policy Center, a nonpartisan group that has weighed in on other Romney proposals, said his deductions cap could raise up to $1.7 trillion over 10 years. The center said earlier this year Romney's 20-percent tax rate cut would cost $4.8 trillion.

Leading Politico: GOP’s problems exposed in struggle for Senate
In 2010, when Republicans stumbled on what had been a clear path to winning control of the Senate, GOP operatives comforted themselves with a defiant vow: Just wait ’til next time. Now, next time is here — and the GOP is in danger of blowing its shot at a majority for the second cycle in a row. – David Catanese and Manu Raju

Leading The New York Times: Obama and Romney Share Stage Again Tonight, but This Time for Laughs
There hasn’t been much smiling by President Obama and Mitt Romney since their tension-filled debate earlier this week. That’s about to change, at least briefly. With less than three weeks left before the election and tensions rising in a razor-close contest, both men will try to set aside whatever disdain they have for each other at the Al Smith dinner Thursday night in New York City. – Michael Shear

Gut Check DVR: At 9 p.m. EST CNN will air the candidates’ speeches tonight at the aforementioned event in New York, the annual Al Smith Dinner.

Leading Marie Clare: Is This Really Goodbye?
Much has been said of Hillary Clinton (and little spared) during her two decades in the public eye. Now, as she prepares to step down as secretary of state, the most accomplished and, arguably, misunderstood woman in recent history insists she's done with public life for good. … Defectors from Hillaryland are a rare species, which helps explain the epic dust storm kicked up by "Why Women Still Can't Have It All," last summer's cover story in The Atlantic written by Anne-Marie Slaughter, Clinton's former director of policy planning, in which she explained why she felt obliged to quit Clinton's staff. When I asked Clinton about Slaughter's claim that "juggling high-level governmental work with the needs of two teenage boys was not possible," Clinton's disapproval was palpable. She reminded me that she has spent her career advocating on behalf of women, that she is committed to the idea that "it's important for our workplaces ... to be more flexible and creative in enabling women to continue to do high-stress jobs while caring for not only children, but [also] aging parents." But, she said, Slaughter's problems were her own. "Some women are not comfortable working at the pace and intensity you have to work at in these jobs ... Other women don't break a sweat. They have four or five, six kids. They're highly organized, they have very supportive networks. … I can't stand whining," she says. "I can't stand the kind of paralysis that some people fall into because they're not happy with the choices they've made. You live in a time when there are endless choices ... Money certainly helps. … But you have to work on yourself ... Do something!” – Ayelet Waldman

The political bites of the day

- With foreign policy debate nearing, Obama highlights al Qaeda accomplishments -
PRESIDENT OBAMA AT A CAMPAIGN EVENT IN NEW HAMPSHIRE: “I made some commitments four years ago. I told you I would end the war in Iraq, and we did it. I said we’d end the war in Afghanistan, we are. I said we’d refocus on the terrorists who actually attacked us on 9-11 and we have. And today a new tower rises above the New York skyline and al Qaeda is on the path to defeat and Osama bin Laden is dead.”

- Ann Romney: I’m pro-life, Mitt ran pro-choice but is pro-life -
ANN ROMNEY IN AN INTERVIEW WITH THE VIEW ON ABC: “The good news is, I’m not running for office and I don't have to say what I feel. But I am pro-life. I'm happy to say that. Mitt has always been a pro-life person. He ran pro-choice. … When the decision came across his desk to use embryos for experimentation … he could not have on his conscience, creating human life for experimentation. That's when he came out saying he was pro-life.”

- In feisty Florida debate, Mack looking to make a move on Nelson -
REPUBLICAN REP. CONNIE MACK: “You say one thing to the people of the state of Florida but you do something else in Washington, D.C.”
DEMOCRATIC SEN. BEN NELSON: “Why don’t you explain why you don’t show up for work?” he asked Mack. “And when you do show up, it’s worse.”

- National security, women and the final presidential debate -
FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE RICK SANTORUM AT A ROMNEY EVENT IN NORTH CAROLINA: “I know from surveys we did… that one of the major concerns women have is security and I’m talking about personal security and concerns for our national security. That’s why I think this next debate is going to be such a home run for Gov. Romney. I mean this nation is less secure because of this president.”

- That’s a clown question, bro -
CONAN O’BRIEN JOKED ON HIS LATE NIGHT TALK SHOW ON TBS: “One of the voters in the audience last night who says he's still undecided was an African-American male. There was an awkward moment when President Obama said, ‘bro, seriously?’ ”

What stopped us in 140 characters or less


Russia was looking to offload the remote, sparingly populated Alaska territory at the same time U.S. Secretary of State William Henry Seward was advising America to expand.

On October 18, 1867, the U.S. finalized the purchase of Alaska from Russia – a deal which cost the United States $7.2 million.

Because of Alaska’s massive size – it is twice as large as the second largest state, Texas – the per acre cost of the deal was an astonishing 2 cents.

Because most of the American public saw the territory as barren and worthless, newspaper editorials dubbed the purchase as “Seward’s Folly” or “Andrew Johnson’s Polar Bear Garden” – named for Andrew Johnson, the president at the time.

(why aren’t you in it)

No interest in Andrew Johnson’s Polar Bear Garden? Tough day for Gut Check Trivia – no correct answers.

Our inbox awaits:
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Tips or comments? Send them to Michelle; send complaints to Preston, because he is already in a bad mood. We also want to give a shout out to Dan Merica, who runs our Twitter account @gutCheckCNN and enriches this product every single day.




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Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Scot McCauley

    Candy Crowley unprofessional performance during the last Presidential debate was the final straw. Why would anyone tune into CNN with such an obvious bias. I had hoped CNN leadership would distance itself but again the obvious absence of any leadership. CNN doesn't even rate a number on my TV monitor!

    October 18, 2012 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    "A new poll shows women who are registered to vote in a dozen key states have very different priorities than their male counterparts."

    I had to laugh at this on some level. All you really had to do to know this is look at the historical record, who's been in control all this time and the results it's given us and you would have arrived at the same damn conclusion.

    October 18, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. Sniffit

    oops, edit haha:

    "A new poll shows women who are registered to vote in a dozen key states have very different priorities than their male counterparts."

    I had to laugh at this on some level. All you really had to do to know this is look at the historical record, which gender has been in control all this time and the results it's given us and you would have arrived at the same damn conclusion.

    October 18, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  4. j

    Candy Crowley is such a big fat tub of lard! Why is she even allowed on TV. They probably have to use wide lens cameras to take her all in. WHAT A BIG FAT SLOB!!!!

    October 18, 2012 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  5. Gurgyl


    October 18, 2012 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  6. the prophet

    The minority still do what they did 4 years ago post Obama regardless of the new incentives to get out of minority by Obama plan, only now the middle class is committing in it, like scarface says the world is full of it... now to get back on track Romney has a real plan for real people.

    October 18, 2012 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  7. the prophet

    Romney REAL Leadership

    October 18, 2012 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  8. The 1 Prophet

    The problem with Obama he thought the minority would grow the economy in the last 4 years, the minority locks skills and education as a foundation for real progress. Romney has a real plan

    October 18, 2012 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  9. Anne

    'get the transcript' Candy! how did Obama know that she had the transcripts?

    In the Rose garden that day he talked in general about attacks of terror, he didn't say the Benghazi attack was an act of terror. For God's sake, he kept referring to the video a couple of days later at UN.. how is it possible to accept such coverup? And Ms. Crowley? so shameful.

    October 18, 2012 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  10. DumbasRocks [R]s

    The problem with [R]s is that they've been lied to for so long by their media lords, they've had to shut down their minds to believe the layer-upon-layer of lies in order to sustain their dogmatic fairytale world..with the result that when a president comes along and is actually truthful, these tailless monkees feel the need to blurt out lies about the president 'lying'. Its like they have a servere case of political Tourrettes Syndrome. What a bunch of rightwing nonsense....

    And then we have all the empty-headed whiners about bias in the last debate. What a bunch of 8 year olds...give me a mean when anyone takes a balanced approach, an approach that does not bend-over so far backwards to be biased FOR rightwing views like FoxNews, then that person 'must' be biased? To openly show the level of stupidity that is constantly whined over these blogs by the rightwing underbelly would be an embarrassment to most humans. Something is genetically wrong with [R]s.

    October 18, 2012 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  11. Gurgyl

    Candy Crowley is just superb. This is an un-biased statement. I always like her.

    October 18, 2012 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  12. the prophet

    Obama plan to raise the standard of minority to lead this Nation has been a disaster, we all know the minority will do what they always do which is nothing.

    October 18, 2012 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  13. NC

    @j, I guess we need a ground lens to take a photo of the worm you are. You are a hateful mean spirited coward.
    Ms. Crowley has more intelligence in her little finger than you have in your whole body.

    Candy Crowley is a intelligent, professional journalist.

    October 18, 2012 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |