CNN's GUT CHECK for October 30, 2012
October 30th, 2012
05:07 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN's GUT CHECK for October 30, 2012

CNN's GUT CHECK | for October 30, 2012 | 5 p.m.
- n. a pause to assess the state, progress or condition of the political news cycle

ONE WEEK UNTIL ELECTION DAY

BREAKING: EARLY VOTING SHOWS DEMOCRATS UP IN NEVADA, GOP UP IN COLORADO Early voting turnout numbers released Tuesday in two western battleground states show mixed results one week before Election Day. In Nevada, more Democrats have cast their ballots already, while more Republicans have done the same in Colorado, according to the official numbers. – Ashley Killough MAP

TRAIL TRIVIA
(Answer below)
On this day in 2001, President George W. Bush threw out the first pitch at Game 3 of The World Series in New York City – just months after the attacks of September 11th. This was the second time during the Major League Baseball season that Bush threw out a first pitch. Where was the first?

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

Mitt Romney’s most effective surrogate in this campaign, in terms of blunt, stark criticism of President Barack Obama, has changed his tone.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is now heaping praise on the president, one week before Election Day. Why? Sandy.

Make no mistake about it, Christie supports Romney for president, but it is hard not to watch and listen to what he has had to say about Obama over the past 24 hours.

The governor did not just make an off-the-cuff remark thanking the federal government for the focus on his state in this time of crisis – the governor has been downright effusive about Obama’s focus on it.

In a trio of tweets over the past 24 hours, Christie expressed: 1. Confidence in the president; 2. Thanked the president personally; 3. Praised the president for his leadership.

Governor Christie (@GovChristie)
I have confidence that we will have support from the President and federal authorities. #Sandy
October 30 at 4:27am

Governor Christie (@GovChristie)
I want to thank the President personally for all his assistance as w recover from the storm.
October 30 at 1:28am

Governor Christie (@GovChristie)
President Obama then said if I needed anything to call him directly. I appreciated that leadership and I will if/when we do.
October 29 at 11:54am

In several interviews, Christie echoed his praise. On MSNBC’s Morning Joe: “It’s been very good working with the president.” On NBC: “I was on the phone at midnight again last night with the president personally. He has expedited the designation of New Jersey as a major disaster area.” To Politico: “The president has been all over this and he deserves great credit.”

Not exactly what you would expect to hear from the tough-talking New Jersey governor, who defied political odds in 2009 to defeat the deep pocketed incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine in one of the bluest of blue states. It is Christie’s “tell it like it is” demeanor that prompted several wealthy Republicans last year to try and convince the New Jersey governor to run for president. Instead, Christie backed Romney and he has become a favorite of Republican audiences on the campaign trail.

But for now, one of Romney’s top surrogates is sidelined as he focuses on helping his state recover from the devastating storm. Asked on Fox & Friends if Romney will visit New Jersey to see firsthand the damage Sandy wrought, Christie was, well, blunt.

“I have no idea, nor am I the least bit concerned or interested,” he said. “I have got a job to do here in New Jersey that is much bigger than presidential politics. And I could care less about any of that stuff. I have a job to do. I’ve got 2.4 million people out of power, I’ve got devastation on the shore, I’ve got floods in the northern part of my state. If you think right now I give a damn about presidential politics, than you don't know me.”

As if this wasn’t damning enough to a campaign that is out of the news cycle a week before Election Day, Christie will stand side-by-side with Obama tomorrow as they tour the storm damaged areas.

In the closing days of the campaign, it is a photo-op that a political consultant can only dream of.

Which consultants' dreams came true? In the short term, Obama’s. And next on the list, Christie’s own advisers who have an eye on a different calendar year: The governor’s up for re-election in 2013.

the LEDE
Did you miss it?

Leading CNNPolitics: Looking presidential: The optics of leadership during a disaster
As Sandy took aim at the East Coast, President Barack Obama discarded campaign events in Florida and Virginia to return to Washington and address the storm from the White House. Mitt Romney adjusted his schedule to hit the battleground state of Ohio and direct campaign resources in Virginia and New Hampshire to focus on storm relief. – Halimah Abdullah

Leading Drudge: Hell And High Water
A huge fire destroyed 80 to 100 houses in a flooded beachfront neighborhood Tuesday, forcing firefighters to undertake daring rescues and injuring three people. More than 190 firefighters contained the blaze but were still putting out some pockets of fire more than nine hours after it erupted. – Larry Neumeister

Leading HuffPo: Atlas Drenched
If it had been up to Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, disaster response agencies would likely face lower funding to handle the huge costs of dealing with storms such as Hurricane Sandy, a review of his much-touted budget shows. The budget plan put forward by Ryan as chairman of the House Budget Committee requires massive cuts to discretionary spending, which includes everything but entitlements. Those cuts would almost certainly extend to the Department of Homeland Security and its disaster relief programs under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). – Elise Foley

Leading Politico: Hurricane Sandy shakes up campaign calendar
Hurricane Sandy has cut in half the final stretch of the presidential race, leaving both the Obama and Romney campaigns uncertain as to when it’s possible to resume a full political schedule with a week to go until Election Day. – Alexander Burns and Maggie Haberman

Leading The New York Times: Storm Pushes Aside Presidential Politics, Mostly
The presidential campaign entered a delicate and disrupted phase on Tuesday morning, suddenly becoming a sideshow to a devastating storm that posed an improvised leadership test to both sides as they sought to navigate the politics of a natural disaster. – Michael Barbaro and Michael D. Shear

TRAIL MOMENTS
The political bites of the day

– Obama: ‘no bureaucracy, no red tape’
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA IN A STATEMENT AT THE RED CROSS IN WASHINGTON: “My instructions to the federal agency has been do not figure out why we can't do something, I want you to figure out how we do something. I want you to cut through red tape. I want you to cut through bureaucracy, there's no excuse for inaction at this point. I want every agency to lean forward and make sure we are getting the resources … where they're needed as quickly as possible. So I want to repeat, my message to the federal government: No bureaucracy, no red tape, get resources where they're needed as fast as possible.”

– Romney heralds makings a difference –
MITT ROMNEY AT A CAMPAIGN EVENT IN OHIO: “We won't be able to solve all the problems with our effort this morning. There are a lot of people that will be looking for goods even though we've gathered these things as you know. One of the things you learn in life, is you make the difference you can. And you can't always solve all the problems yourself. But you can make the difference in the lives of one or two people - as a result of one or two people taking an effort.”

– Biden on FEMA: “One hell of a job” –
VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN BEFORE A FLIGHT IN OHIO: “This is working like it's supposed to. FEMA has been reorganized; they are doing one hell of a job. They pre-positioned resources. The governors are all cooperating with one another. Mayor's all cooperating. Never in all my experience (have I) seen cooperation, and acknowledgment of that cooperation, from city, state, and federal levels. It’s working like it's supposed to.”

TOP TWEETS
What stopped us in 140 characters or less

TRIVIA ANSWER

In April of 2001, President George W. Bush was a new president and was invited to throw out the first pitch at the new Miller Park in Milwaukee.

After the September 11th attacks, Bush, in a sign of American strength, threw out the first pitch at Game 3 of the World Series at Yankee Stadium in New York. On October 30, wearing a FDNY sweatshirt, Bush threw a strike in front of the sell out crowd.

Before becoming president, Bush owned the Texas Rangers – the first president to be a baseball owner before occupying the Oval Office.

Bush also threw out a first pitch at the College World Series and the Little League World Series in 2001.

GUT CHECK WINNER’S CIRCLE
(why aren’t you in it)

Wow, that took a long time. Congrats to Rich Killion (@nhkillion) for correctly answering today’s Gut Check trivia question after countless incorrect answers by some Gut Check staples.

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Filed under: CNN's Gut Check
soundoff (72 Responses)
  1. Kevin

    Geez people, this is a disaster NOT a Democrat or Republican Disaster but an American disaster. I am a Republican but all that should be secondary when things like this happen. Put politics aside for now and face this together and stop trying to use this to push the guy you want elected.

    October 30, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  2. Peggy Munro

    President Obama started his term being faced with the worst recession since whenever and is ending his first term with the worst storm since whenever. He has served us well. Imagine having as many roadblocks in your way as he did. The harder he worked , the more the enemies ganged up against him. I sometimes wonder how not one Republican in Congress ever said that the President was right. I wonder how not one Republican Congressman said we cannot sacrifice the American people for our dislike of the President, who is working hard on behalf of the people. I prayed and prayed that one day one Republican would stand up for what is right. Bingo Here is Christie. But did it have to take a storm? Anyway Governor Christie, you have restored my faith in humanity. I will continue to pray for New Jersey and all the other affected areas. May Good bless us all.

    October 30, 2012 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  3. American666

    The President is all about helping America. This simple and honest truth hurts the Republican party.

    October 30, 2012 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  4. Spanglish

    The hypocrite of Obama after being dragged from Florida, to the WH to act as avPresident, use the words to save lives but nobody forgot that ache did I not care about the American Citizens in Benghazi, Libya They were watching the manslaughter and they dido not send any body to help them period knowing that region was a dang amorous place and for several weeks they were pleading for security personnel

    October 30, 2012 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  5. Spanglish

    Al gore blaming to humans the hurricane, but He is responsible for the outsourcing to China the biggest polluter in the world, and HeGore did not do anything about the Appalachian coal ,He was Senator and never visited that region or never worried about contamination, He was only after the skirts of every woman he could find period

    October 30, 2012 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  6. Carole

    What our President Obama does comes from his heart. He really has his "plate" full, but I know he will do all that he can to support people affected by this horrible storm. He has my vote next Tuesday.

    October 30, 2012 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  7. Kevin

    Governor Chris Christie tells fox news he doesn't care for a romney visits after hurricane Sandy, he said he is not in to the politics of it. LOL!!! finally a real republican. (COVER THIS CNN) Fox News Video Alert.

    October 30, 2012 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  8. Anaheim

    The President has successfully kept us from a depression, war, Bin Ladin, has assisted us with several natural disasters in 4 years, he is not Houdini support the man he's earned it. signed a republican

    October 30, 2012 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
  9. Zwei Stein

    Governor Christie ... the "adult" in the GOP room. His response just won for him 80% of the nation's Independents, 65% of the Republicans and (yes) more than 50% of the Democrats. He knows where politics stops.

    October 31, 2012 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  10. Dan

    When the HECK is CNN going to call out Romney for the chain-lies he tells everyday!

    October 31, 2012 12:39 am at 12:39 am |
  11. Darrell

    truth hurts....yes, the truth hurts: Mitt is a fraud. Obama is leading the recovery as a competent leader. Get use to for the next four years. Obama-Biden 2012

    October 31, 2012 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  12. Phil

    Christie cuts Romney off at the knees... sounds to me like he fell in love with the idea of running for President, and is preparing for 2016. Can't do that if Romney's elected this year.

    October 31, 2012 02:42 am at 2:42 am |
  13. Colorado Christian

    This Republican wife and mother of three did NOT vote for the Mormon candidate! Shame on those Christians who will or already did!

    October 31, 2012 03:26 am at 3:26 am |
  14. Dar

    Governor Christie (@GovChristie)
    I want to thank the President personally for all his assistance as w recover from the storm

    Don't think for a second that this isnt a political kiss up from Gov Christie to gain free money from Obama.
    Obama knows that if he sucks up and shows the country how good he could treat a Republican he might gain a few extra votes.
    If this had happened two years ago Christie would be screaming at the goverment for help. You know it.

    October 31, 2012 05:13 am at 5:13 am |
  15. Zelig

    Texan is high as a kite. Where do you get this nonsense? Candidates are not given security briefings. They have no more right to know national security issues than you.. Why on earth would the United Staes give delicate national security information to a private citizen? and in this particular election trusting unfit mitt with the combination of a gym locker would be dangerous given his proclivity to say anything he thinks might get him a vote.

    October 31, 2012 05:18 am at 5:18 am |
  16. Dawn

    The President is doing his job during a national disaster. Romney would do the same if he was president. Over the top praise isn't necessary. CNN is making Gov. Christie's praise for the president political.

    October 31, 2012 06:27 am at 6:27 am |
  17. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    Although Christie is a republican and supports Romney, the big difference between Romney and Christie is that Christie doesn't politicize a tragedy for political gain. There's a time when you have to put politics aside and come together as a nation because our strenght is in numbers. But don't tell that to RobitsallaboutMEMEME. Mr.RobMEMEME only thinks about MEMEMESELFSELFSELF. And when it appears as though the polls are shifting in the President's favor, what does RobMEMEME do? LIBYA LIBYA LIBYA. Well, SHAME SHAME SHAME on you RobMEMEME.

    October 31, 2012 06:54 am at 6:54 am |
  18. njbchicago

    The President is doing what he is supposed to do. No more, no less. Making a big deal out of it because of the election. BUT, WHERE WAS HE WHEN HIS WHITE HOUSE WAS WATCHING 7 HOURS OF ATTACKS ON OUR EMBASSY IN BENGHAZI????????????? IN LAS VEGAS RAISING MONEY FOR HIS CAMPAIGN!!!!!!! Funny, 4 people died in those attacks on our soil. Guess he gets more press here in the states.

    October 31, 2012 07:09 am at 7:09 am |
  19. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    @truth

    Yes, the truth hurts and that is why Robmoney won't release his taxes. He's afraid that his returns would show that he hasn't paid taxes in 10 years. And this low down loser is such a deceitful fraud, he's telling the American people to trust him with their lives and future and with their family's lives and future and vote for him. Well, its too bad this low down deceitful piece of crap won't trust these same voters to see what's in his tax returns. And worst of all, there are millions of people out there brainwashed enough to let him off the hook because the other guy's skin is too dark. You know, millions of people in Nazi Germany trusted Hitler too. And when the Federal Auditors suspected that Bernie Madeoff was running a ponsi skeem, they turned a blind eye on his activity and the end result was over 60 billion dollars of investors money swindled away and thousands of lives ruined. But play dumb and keep supporting this retard and see what's happens down the road...It took Germany decades to rebuild. And likewise, it would take years for the lives Madeoff ruined to recover from the injustice and crime he commited against them. Just keep that in mind!

    October 31, 2012 07:10 am at 7:10 am |
  20. Jack V

    I'm sure right wing partisan heads are exploding after Christie praised the President. But here's what's disturbing, our country was hit with a disaster & instead of doing something to help, the right wing people are still doing nothing but acting like miscreants. Disgusting!

    October 31, 2012 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  21. jan

    Mitt and Ryan wanted to cut the FEMA. Now they have changed their tone. Has anyone kept the record how often Mitt changed hisposition? He will say anything to get elected. He is a political prostitute. I do not agree with Obama on all his decisions but between the two of them Obama is much better person and leader than Mitt "the shit". I can not believe how short sighted Americans are that they can not see through Mitt. Here is a guy who says he doesn't give a crap about 47% who may not vote for him and he still is running high in polls.
    We americans just do not learn from anything from our experiance. We don't see things arund us, we do't hear things around us. We don't analyse information rationally. We live in our little world. We have a very short memory.
    We will pay a price for it in the long run.

    October 31, 2012 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  22. NO CRAP

    I may not agree with Christie on everything, but I have more respect for him that he was able to put party differences aside for the greater good of the citizens of NJ. I'm a real conservative and I think President Obama has done an outstanding job especially right now in terms of mobilizing resources to help those affected by the storm. My thoughts and prayers are with those affected, and I encourage anyone who can donate to the red cross to do so. May God Bless all of you, and help us all come through this disaster in a speedy manner.

    October 31, 2012 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
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