WASHINGTON (CNN) – A prominent Democrat who is also a Louisiana native said Sunday he was somewhat offended that President Obama has yet to pay a visit to New Orleans, a city trying to rebuild after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina four years ago.
“I’m a Democrat and this is a Democratic president. I would describe myself as slightly miffed that he hasn’t been down yet,” Democratic strategist and longtime Clinton ally James Carville said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union, “but he says he’s coming down before the end of the year. And we’re hospitable people and we certainly will welcome him.”
Carville and his wife Mary Matalin, a Republican strategist and former Dick Cheney aide, moved their family to New Orleans in mid-2008.
“I can honestly say, . . . you can start to feel the progress now,” Carville said of the legendary city’s efforts to rebuild. “It’s a work in progress but there has been progress. I promise you that,” Carville also told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.
Carville’s words were echoed by one of the Louisiana’s senators, Democrat Mary Landrieu.
“What about this?,” Carville said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union, “Suppose they pass a House bill that can get 56 Senate Democrats.” Then, Carville suggested, instead of using reconciliation, a special budgetary maneuver in Senate procedure that frustrate GOP attempts to mount a filibuster, Democrats should call for a vote. “And make [Republicans] filibuster it. But the old kinda way is that they filibuster it and make’em go three weeks and all night and [Democrats] will be there the whole time.
“Then, you say, ‘They’re the people that stopped it. We had a majority of Democrats. We had a good bill. They stopped it.’"
The Democratic strategist also rejected any comparison between the Clinton administration’s failed efforts at health care reform in 1994 and the Obama administration’s efforts now.
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“This is very suspect timing,” Republican strategist and former Cheney adviser Mary Matalin said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union. “The president’s agenda is almost in shambles. His [poll] numbers are dropping. Isn’t it coincidental; they gin up a Cheney story.”
Matalin also said that the Executive branch has some authority under the nation’s intelligence laws to not disclose information to Congress under certain circumstances. “The more people that know, the more it leaks . . . and then the enemy knows what it is,” Matalin said of details about other intelligence programs that were leaked to the media.
“Every time they get in trouble . . . they dredge up a Darth Vader story,” Matalin also said, making a reference to past comparisons between Cheney and the villain in the “Stars Wars’ movies.
WASHINGTON (CNN) – One of Washington’s most prominent political couples weighed in Sunday on the latest sexual scandal to dominate political headlines.
James Carville, a Democratic strategist, and Mary Matalin, a Republican strategist, gave their unique takes on the situation of South Carolina’s embattled Republican Gov. Mark Sanford.
After days when his whereabouts were unknown and during which he was apparently unreachable by both his staff and his wife, Sanford held an emotioal and sometimes rambling press conference last week. Before local and national media, the governor admitted to carrying on an affair with a woman in Argentina, where Sanford had been AWOL for several days prior to the presser.
“I actually thought that his press conference was very, sort of compelling television,” Carville said Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union. The Democrat also told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King that he hoped Sanford would not have to resign because of the scandal.
The Democratic strategist added that Democrats should not view the scandal as an opportunity to attack Sanford or the GOP.
“I have no idea, but, if I had to guess, there’s going to be some Democrats that are going to get entangled in this kind of stuff because there always is people,” Carville, a longtime ally of former President Bill Clinton, said.
That said, Carville threw down the gauntlet with Republicans in anticipation of the 2010 and 2012 elections.
“If they go back to this what-do-we-tell-the-children, family values stuff, I’ll lead the attack on them,” the Democrat said. “If they just leave it alone, and say, ‘you know, we’re all human beings, we’re all capable of falling, let’s concentrate on policy,’ then that’s fine. Let’s move on to the next thing.”
Carville’s wife said Gov. Sanford should be focused on the personal rather than the political aspects of his situation – particularly the potential impact on the Sanfords’ four young sons.
“He has to make those four boys understand that this God awful betrayal has nothing to do with them,” Matalin said. “That he loves them and he needs to pray that they will forgive him. That’s his number one job.”
(CNN) – A debate between political strategists Karl Rove and James Carville grew heated Tuesday night when it came to the future of the Republican Party.