Tag Archives: Sarah Palin

So Where’s Lou Dobbs Going?

He has become CNN’s most controversial anchor, and some say its most divisive. So what made Lou Dobbs ask to be let out of his multi million dollar contract and leave the network, effective immediately? It must have stunned his colleagues and it’s certainly the talk of the cable new universe . The guy who started as the host of a business program, Moneyline, is now saying he wants to go beyond the role of a television jounalist. Gee, I thought he already had.

By way of full disclosure, I guested on Lou Dobbs Tonight a couple of times.

In person I found him genial and courteous, but that was until the camera was turned on. Then he became the dogmatic faux-populist we all know. No matter. The question is, what now for Lou Dobbs? Will he follow Sarah Palin’s lead and become a gadfly, appearing at rallies and tea parties convinced he really matters? Has he ridden the anti immigrant wave as far as he can on television? Will elected office be next?

loudobbs

The mind reels at the possibilities. Remember that Lou Dobbs met with some folks at the Fox News Channel not long ago. He’d be the jewel in the crown for them, probably airing just before Bill O’Reilly.

Maybe, however, he’s serious about staying out of the media limelight for a time. Just last month, he said his home was shot at while he and his wife were outside. The culprit, according to Lou Dobbs? “The national liberal media has chosen sides. And they have decided that they’re going to focus on the liberal view, which is that they will embrace illegal immigration no matter who is harmed, no matter how many laws are broken, or how few consequences there are for breaking those laws. My wife has now been and I have been shot at.”

The New Jersey State Police said it was more likely a hunter’s stray bullet. After all, Lou Dobbs lives in that part of the Garden State that loves its guns. Regardless, no one in their right mind thinks we’ve heard the last of the man. His ego is far too big, and maybe he’ll just goad President Barack Obama into doing more to prove he was actually born in Hawaii. That affiliation with birthers hurt his credibility, though you’d never get him to admit it.

Yet Lou Dobbs, in leaving CNN, joins an already crowded arena of conservative pols, pundits, and wannabees, all of whom have an agenda that could in theory clash with his. Will he still be relevant a year from now? You tell me.

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So What Did We Learn From Tuesday’s Election?

Despite the relatively small number of electoral contests, media pundits of every shape and size are trying to come up with the elusive answer to what it means. Many of them are just blowing smoke. However, there ought to be some lessons learned by politicians of every party and ideology. Many of those lessons won’t be trumpeted by the mainstream media, who will be so busy writing President Barack Obama’s political obituary they can’t see the forest for the trees.

The President did make some mistakes for sure.

He spent a great deal of political capital on two uninspiring Democratic gubernatorial candidates, Jon Corzine and Creigh Deeds. The Obama magic didn’t work. Young people and people of color simply didn’t turn out in Virginia or New Jersey, and both crashed to defeat. The President could have spent just a little time in New York City trying to elect Comptroller William Thompson as mayor. His little shout out of an endorsement didn’t even fool Thompson, yet he ran closer to Mayor Michael Bloomberg than anyone expected. Thompson also suffered from a lackluster campaign, but more importantly from a stunning lack of support from unions that ordinarily would back any Democratic candidate.

While the Mayor of New York City won a third term he engineered for himself, the NY-23 race in upstate New York turned out to be a Waterloo for the conservative, birther, tea party wing of the GOP. They threw endorsements around like Frisbees, falling all over each other to sing the praises of Doug Hoffman, the true conservative who vanquished Marxist Republican Dede Scozzafava, who dropped out before a vote was even cast.

And what did Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Tim Pawlenty, Michelle Bachman, Fred Thompson, and Rush Limbaugh (did I forget anybody?) get for all their hot air? They elected a Democrat, Bill Owens, the first Democrat to hold the seat in over 100 years. Watch a Democrat win, watch the right wing spin. some of them want people to believe Hoffman’s defeat was actually a victory for them. Witness the writing of Erick  Erickson of the conservative RedState.com. “This is a huge win for conservatives…the GOP now must recognize it will either lose without conservatives or will win with conservatives.” Right, okay. Next?

And finally, there was the district that media forgot, California’s 10th. Like NY-23, there was a special election because the sitting congressperson, Ellen Tauscher, took a post in the Obama Administration. Rep. Tauscher, it should be noted, was part of the conservative wing of the Democratic Party in the House. So who won her seat? Democrat John Garamendi, who couldn’t be more different. He supports the public option, but really wants to see single payer healthcare for all Americans. He also wants US troops out of Afghanistan ASAP. He beat his Republican challenger by 10 points.

So why is nobody outside of California talking about him, and what he means to the national agenda? You tell me.

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What’s So Special About NY-23?

For those of you who aren’t political junkies, NY-23 is New York’s 23rd Congressional District. Until Recently, it was represented by John McHugh (R).

President Barack Obama chose him for a post at the Pentagon, setting up one of two races for congressional seats this fall (the other is California’s 10th District). Yet NY-23 has begun to capture the attention of the nation’s celebrity conservatives and Republicans like no other race in a long time.

NY-23 is a three way race, pitting Democrat Bill Owens against Republican Dede Scozzafava and Conservative Party candidate  Doug Hoffman.

DougHoffman
Doug Hoffman

Right wing Republicans like Sarah Palin, Fred Thompson, Michelle Bachman, Steve Forbes, Tim Pawlenty, Dick Armey, and Rick Santorum have flocked to back…..Hoffman the Conservative! Oh yeah, and Congressmen John Linder of Georgia and Todd Tiahrt of Kansas have also jumped on the Hoffman bandwagon.

Newt Gingrich must feel awfully lonely. He’s about the only well known Republican retread backing Scozzafava.

What’s so important about a three way race in upstate New York? Why all this right wing firepower? I’ll hazard a guess.

For Palin and Pawlenty, it’s a chance to burnish their credentials with the conservative base both think they’ll need to run for president in 2012. For the others, it’s a test of conservative strength. It’s a chance to say all is not lost in Barack Obama’s America (you know, the one they want back). They’re banking that voters in upstate New York care about the Bachmans, the Forbes, the Thompsons, the who???

NY-23 is the right on what they hope is the comeback trail. How else top explain why this race threatens to eclipse both the New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial contests?  Of course, the stakes are high. If all this right wing heft is brought to bear and their guy loses (Owens is currently leading in a couple of polls), what does it say about the true gravitas of the tea party wing of the GOP? Then, on the other side, maybe Doug Hoffman wins. That makes all these right wing Republicans kingmakers in a district most couldn’t find with a GPS. It’s also interesting to hear John Linder in particular bleat about backing Hoffman to end bipartisanship in Washington.

Hey genius, how do you think the seat opened up in the first place? John McHugh, tapped to be Army Secretary, is a Republican! If Owens wins, it will be the first time a Democrat has won the seat in 100 years. No matter what happens, this race has exposed a steel cage match for the soul of the Republican Party.

Do you think it’s worth the trouble, and if so, who will win?

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