Tags: Palin | Gets | Help

Palin Gets Help; Pawlenty Takes Turn; Jeb Bush on Drilling

By    |   Sunday, 27 September 2009 02:59 PM

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Florida’s Hasner Calls for Action Against ACORN
2. Gov. Tim Pawlenty Takes a Sharp Right Turn
3. Jeb Bush Is Open to Drilling; Praises Marco Rubio
4. Those 'Who Know' Oppose Single-Payer Healthcare
5. McCain Aide Advises Palin for Big Speech
6. Sen. DeMint Says Sen. Snowe Is 'Holding' on Healthcare
7. We Heard: Jimmy Carter, Newspaper Woes, Michael Moore, Palin


1. Florida’s Hasner Calls for Action Against ACORN

Florida State Rep. Adam Hasner has been a longtime critic of ACORN, and the recent scandals plaguing the community-organizing group have left him feeling vindicated.

"It's justified to say, 'I told you so,'" the Republican majority leader said in remarks reported by the St. Petersburg Times. "They are at the heart of every controversy. They should have never been receiving tax dollars. This is a radical organization. It's totally secret and they are bad actors."

ACORN — the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now — has been implicated in voter registration fraud. But the U.S. Congress took severe action against the group only after the release of hidden-camera videos showing its workers giving tax advice to a couple posing as a prostitute and her pimp.

In one video, an ACORN counselor advised the couple, who claimed they wanted to set up a brothel, how to claim tax credits for underage girls from El Salvador.

Both the U.S. Senate and House have now voted to cut off federal funding for ACORN, and the Census Bureau has severed its ties with the organization.

Hasner believes the Florida legislature should also take action against ACORN. And former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, who is seeking the 2010 Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate, said Florida Gov. Charlie Crist should launch an investigation of the group, the Miami Herald reported.

U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman, a Florida Democrat, voted to cut off funds to ACORN but asserted that the group was being broadly condemned due to the action of a few bad employees.

"I don't think that a couple of people getting sabotaged by right-wing conservatives with cameras means that type of conduct is pervasive through the whole organization," she said.

But after ACORN sought to control the damage by firing the workers who appear in the videos, Rep. Hasner scoffed: "When the walls are closing in on you, it's good strategy to make it appear you are cleaning house. It's too little, too late. The gig is up for ACORN."

Editor's Note:

2. Gov. Tim Pawlenty Takes a Sharp Right Turn

Eyeing a run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has moved to the right to better appeal to the conservatives who will likely select the GOP candidate.

Pawlenty has been viewed during his two terms as fairly close to the center. But in recent weeks he has made several moves to burnish his right-wing credentials.

Among them: He yanked state funding for the ACORN community organizing group, termed fears over so-called death panels "legitimate," called President Barack Obama's address to schoolchildren "uninvited," suggested he could assert states' rights to block federal healthcare reform, and called Obama's reform plans "a joke."

"Pawlenty is making public statements and taking stands likely to gain him some notice by the conservatives who will determine which candidate will rise from the GOP pack as their nominee," the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune reported.

The governor — who has announced that he will not run for a third term in 2010 — has said he dismissed the "premise that somehow all this is for 2012."

But former state Republican Party Chairman Bill Morris declared: "The vocabulary is getting more hard-right. He really is taking fairly hot-button positions on key conservative issues."

A recent Rasmussen Reports poll found that a vast majority of Minnesota voters believe Pawlenty will run for the White House in 2012, and many think he can win the GOP nomination.

In the survey, 29 percent of respondents said it is very likely he will run, and 43 percent said it is somewhat likely.

And if he does run, 50 percent of respondents believe his chances of winning the nomination are very likely or somewhat likely.

The poll also found that 50 percent of respondents strongly or somewhat approve of his job performance, and 43 percent somewhat or strongly disapprove.

Editor's Note:

3. Jeb Bush Is Open to Drilling; Praises
Marco Rubio

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said his views on offshore oil drilling have changed, and he is now more open to allowing drilling off the Florida coast.

When he was in office, Bush sought a permanent ban on drilling within 150 miles of Florida's coast.

But he told a meeting of the Lakewood Ranch Republican Club in Florida, "I think we need to have a second look at this."

He said Florida officials should be open to talking about the issue, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported, and noted that drilling technology has improved greatly and reduced the risk of an oil spill.

Meanwhile Bush declined to pick a Republican favorite in the race for the U.S. Senate between Florida Gov. Charlie Crist and former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, saying "I admire both of them."

But he went on to praise Rubio as "very articulate," according to the Herald-Tribune, and said national party leaders should not be pushing Crist as aggressively as they have.

"I think [Rubio] should be given a chance," Bush said.

"I think the idea that the national party would pick a winner a year and a half before an election is the wrong way to go."

Editor's Note:

4. Those 'Who Know' Oppose Single-Payer Healthcare

A majority of voters who are already covered by government health insurance are opposed to a "single-payer system" where the federal government provides healthcare for all Americans, a new poll reveals.

In the Zogby International/O'Leary Report survey of more than 4,420 likely voters covered under Medicare, Medicaid, or Tricare — which provides health benefits to military personnel, retirees, and their families — a      full 44 percent said they strongly oppose a single-payer system, and     10 percent somewhat oppose it.

Only 37 percent said they strongly or somewhat support a single-payer system, and 7 percent said they are not sure.

The poll results are significant because this group is arguably in the best position to opine on government-provided healthcare, since they already receive it.

Half of all respondents in the poll said they strongly or somewhat oppose a "public option," a government health insurance plan that would compete with private health insurance plans, and 33 percent strongly support it.

And half of respondents said they agree with the statement: "Expanding government's role in healthcare will do more harm than good."

Editor's Note:

5. McCain Aide Advises Palin for Big Speech

John McCain's foreign policy aide during his presidential campaign, Randy Scheunemann, is now advising McCain's running mate Sarah Palin and accompanied her on her recent trip to China.

Palin delivered a paid speech in Hong Kong at a conference hosted by the brokerage house CLSA last week, and Scheunemann's presence "offers a clue as to who in the McCain orbit has survived a bitter set of post-campaign recriminations," Politico.com's Ben Smith observed.

Scheunemann, a former national security adviser for Sen. Trent Lott, has been a vocal critic of the Barack Obama administration, and recently called Obama's decision not to erect a missile shield in Eastern Europe a "concession" to Russia.

An early supporter of the Iraq war, he is prominent in the Republican Party's "hawkish, internationalist, neoconservative wing," Smith writes, "and his place beside Palin also offers a bit of a clue as to the direction in which her vaguely defined foreign policy views are likely to develop."

In her Hong Kong speech, Palin — who resigned as Alaska's governor in July — argued for smaller government, calling for lower taxes and a private-sector solution to healthcare.

She also criticized China on several points, saying the country "provides support for some of the most questionable regimes from Sudan to Burma to Zimbabwe."

She added that the U.S. needs "China to improve the rule of law and protect intellectual property."

The speech was Palin's first major address outside North America.

Editor's Note:

6. Sen. DeMint Says Sen. Snowe Is 'Holding' on Healthcare

Democrats have been targeting Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine as the most likely Republican to support their healthcare reform plans, but Sen. Jim DeMint says she is "holding strong" by continuing to seek a better plan in the Senate Finance Committee.

"Right now, the bill is words and promises," South Carolina Republican DeMint said on ABC News' "Top Line." "We don't really have legislation and so I don't think Sen. Snowe is going to give in to this naïve idea that we can go with these promises, get a bill out of the Senate, and it's going to remain in some form that she could support."

DeMint also asserted that President Barack Obama's quest for healthcare reform at the expense of a decision on whether to send more forces to Afghanistan could be endangering American troops. "The problem is the war in Afghanistan and our economy are our biggest issues, but he's working on other issues such as healthcare, and he's putting off the decision on Afghanistan, which I think puts our troops at risk."

Editor's Note:

7. We Heard . . .

THAT according to the Shah of Iran's widow, one American is responsible for many of the nation's problems in recent decades: Jimmy Carter.

Empress Farah Pahlavi told Avenue magazine that if President Carter hadn't let the Sha be overthrown in 1979, "there wouldn't be this problem in Afghanistan, nor would there have been the Iran-Iraq war.

"Iraq would never have dared to even send a plane over our country. The Gulf War wouldn't have happened, nor would any of the problems of the past 30 years, including the exporting of religious fanaticism."

THAT nearly 8 out of 10 Americans would oppose any plan to spend tax dollars to aid failing newspapers, according to a new poll by Sacred Heart University.

In the survey, 38 percent of respondents said they are reading newspapers less often than five years ago, and 45 percent said they think the Internet is "adequately covering for failing newspapers."

The poll also found that more than 83 percent of respondents believe that national news media organizations are very or somewhat biased, Editor & Publisher reported. Only 14 percent view them as somewhat unbiased or not at all biased.

THAT there was a particular irony when documentary filmmaker Michael Moore screened his latest movie, "Capitalism: A Love Story," at Manhattan's Alice Tully Hall on Monday night.

The film criticizes banks like Citibank for irresponsible greed, and at one point shows a family being evicted from their home in Illinois by representatives of Citigroup. At the screening, a family member yelled to Moore from the balcony that he thought the film was "great," The New York Times reported.

He may not have realized he was seated in the "Citi Balcony" — sponsored by Citibank.

THAT an Alaskan newspaper has apologized to former Gov. Sarah Palin for its "choice of words" in reporting on her recent speech in Hong Kong.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner acknowledged that it "used offensive language — 'A broad in Asia' — above a small photograph of the former governor to direct readers inside the newspaper to a full story of her Hong Kong appearance. "There can be no argument that our use of the word 'broad' is anything but offensive . . . Mrs. Palin, please accept this apology from the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner."

Editor's Note:

Editor's Notes:

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. Florida s Hasner Calls for Action Against ACORN2. Gov. Tim Pawlenty Takes a Sharp Right Turn3. Jeb Bush Is Open to Drilling; Praises Marco Rubio4. Those 'Who Know' Oppose Single-Payer Healthcare5. McCain Aide Advises Palin for...
Sunday, 27 September 2009 02:59 PM
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