CNN's GUT CHECK for October 30, 2012
October 30th, 2012
05:07 PM ET
10 years 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


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

(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

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.”

What stopped us in 140 characters or less









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.

(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. truth hurts

    Problem for Obama is that a LOT of Democrats are voting for ROMNEY!!! Even THEY can't take another 4 years of Obama!!

    October 30, 2012 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  2. DENNA

    @ – truth hurts – Problem for Obama is that a LOT of Democrats are voting for ROMNEY!!! Even THEY can't take another 4 years of Obama!!
    Fantacize much? I heard your boy insinuated himself on FEMA during this disaster. Mittens is a private citizen at this stage of the election process and he should stay out of the way of President Obama, FEMA, and anyone else who can actually order help for the devasted areas. Poetic justice would be for YOU go live in one of the affected areas.

    October 30, 2012 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. Jen

    Where is your proof Truth??? Oh that's right you don't have any, just like Romney.

    October 30, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  4. kayla

    am sure if you are a real democrat you would not vote for that dummy.

    October 30, 2012 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  5. Marie MD

    @truth, you are so funny. I know a lot of rethugs, including my husband, who are voting for the President because they can't stomach the lying cheat the twit is nor the boy toy. Good try though.
    BTW – it now seems that the bully bishop might go to NJ after all. Is he bringing canned goods with him to hand out to the 47% who are now without power? Is he going to defend that he now cares about blue states?

    October 30, 2012 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  6. Comforted

    It's really comforting to have such an able and competent president in charge.

    Through a war, economic recession, and a hurricane (not to mention the aftermaths of the gulf oil spill and Katrina), I'm really impressed with President Obama.

    October 30, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  7. truth hurts

    Jen - Where is your proof Truth??? Oh that's right you don't have any
    Every demographic group that supported Obama in 2008 is DOWN in 2012, except blacks of course and that is because he has kept unemployment at record levels for them as well as us and it has absolutely nothing to do with race.

    We only have a few more weeks to survive to get by the Obama nightmare.

    October 30, 2012 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  8. DENNA

    This should give Mittens indigestion: Governor Christie has been in conact with President Obama and made complimentary comments on the cooperation he is receiving. I haven't cared much for Gov. Christie and his loud mouth, but today I have seen a man who is thoughtful and cares a lot about New Jersey. God bless you Gov. Christie and all who are in harms way. Please Gov. Christie, be that man that I saw this morning and you may have a real shot a running for president some day.

    October 30, 2012 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  9. Gurgyl

    Just ignore idiots, support our President.

    October 30, 2012 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  10. Ancient Texan

    Every candidate, after receiving the nomination of his party, is brought up to the same level of information that the President has in order to level the playing field going into the election. Romney gets briefings everyday on National Security, Disasters, or anything else of national interest. The third party candidates probably get the same info.

    October 30, 2012 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  11. all obama

    Never like Christie but I must say he is doing a great job and he shows a lot of political courage and he is not a fake like Romney .nj jersey resident...He actually cares about the state.

    October 30, 2012 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    Rest assured, if Mittens is elected and enacts the GOP/Teatrolls' ideological fantasy economic policies, then we'll ALL have a chance to get in line to receive a can of food...CATFOOD...courtesy of Mitt Romney.

    October 30, 2012 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  13. Really?

    Truth hurts...ohhh the irony. Where are you getting your information? Obama has increased his Latino voter base AND has also increased the white male vote since 2008. Turn off Rush Limbaugh, and Faux News.

    October 30, 2012 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    "@truth, you are so funny. I know a lot of rethugs, including my husband, who are voting for the President because they can't stomach the lying cheat the twit is nor the boy toy."

    Indeed. I know a few who couldn't quite make the switch but were saying as early as during the GOP primary that if Mitt got the nomination they'd simply stay home because you just cannot trust anything that comes out of his mouth. To be sure, there are plenty who feel that way who will still vote for him though...if only because they just don't like having a black POTUS.

    October 30, 2012 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    "Romney relief event seemed to mostly hit the right tone. Optimistic, but not very political. A few nonpartisan remarks, then canned goods"

    Really, is that why they were handing out "Victory Event" buttons and there are pictures online of people standing around with an anti-Obama T-shirts that were being sold or handed out at the event?

    October 30, 2012 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  16. Joan

    Romney can't even leave the campaigning for a day. He is sooooooooooo desperate to win and become the President in name only. I think what would help him to win though if he donate all the money is rich friends gave him to buy the Presidency to the people that are hurting. Then he could challenge President Obama to do the same. I think that would be a wonderful gesture and people would see that this man do have a heart and the 47% he talked about was a mispoke.

    October 30, 2012 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  17. NOBAMA

    I am amazed at how many democrats are switching to Romney. This could be a historic landslide for Romney.

    October 30, 2012 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  18. Rev

    I used to hate Gov Christie, but turns out he's not such a bad guy after all. His devotion to his state over politics is actually awe inspiring. Not that he had a choice, but the fact that he brushed off reporters rather than taking the rather tempting opportunity to inject politics shows character.

    October 30, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  19. Anne

    Not clear why all this fuss about Gov. Christie. If he already had the resources, he wouldn't have to ask the president for help. If you think about it, money and resources are the same no matter where they are located, and less bureaucracy usually saves money. Someone still has to pay for federal or state income taxes, or the government has to borrow money. Help is not coming from the President's or Governors' pockets, it is from our pockets (or borrowed from China and be paid by our children and grand children). Governors and presidents just have to find a more effective way to move money and resources. Romney never said that we shouldn't have this money to allocate in tough situations, he just questioned where to keep them: at the state or federal levels. I think this is still debatable. If I had a problem, I would prefer to have my money to solve it, not beg a bank to give me a loan, or ask friends and family for support. Let's turn to the real problem: Strong Economy and Less Debt! Yes, the president was 'responsive' - he is moving money that we don't actually own from one pocket to the other.

    October 30, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  20. DENNA

    Ancient Texan: So is that why Mittens was sitting in on a FEMA conference call this morning? He's not a governor or anything but a private citizen.

    October 30, 2012 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  21. TEW

    truth hurts is no doubt some low information tea party voter collecting some sort of government relief while at the same time backing tea party republicans and criticizing the Prez and Dem party. See what happens when you gut education ? You get idiots like this. Go back to your lawn chair at the NASCAR track!!

    October 30, 2012 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  22. Captain Tom

    The Presidents got all the votes in our house. He's not perfect but compared to the clown he replaced he is great!

    October 30, 2012 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  23. Charlie

    Jen asks truth hurts for proof of his/her unsubstantiated statement regarding Democrats voting for Romney. truth hurts replies with another unsubstantiated statement that is basically just a rewording of the original unsubstantiated statement.

    October 30, 2012 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    "Obama visits Red Cross: 'Storm is not yet over'"

    Indeed. We're in for 4 more years of tears and tantrums from the GOP/Teatrolls after Obama is re-elected.

    October 30, 2012 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  25. Goffy

    Support our President.We have to blame the congress for by partisan.He did a dam good jobs

    October 30, 2012 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
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