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Maybe we should excuse Joe Biden for his bad week:
Paul Ryan just got in his head & caused his insecurities to spill out

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 7:18 pm - August 17, 2012.
Filed under: 2012 Presidential Election,Biden Watch,Paul Ryan

In my first post on Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan to be his running mate, I quoted Jonah Goldberg who insisted that the “vice presidential debate will be awesome”:

If I had to predict right now, Ryan won’t so much trounce Biden as Biden will trounce himself. All of the talk about how Ryan is smarter and more knowledgeable than Biden will get deep in Joe’s head. Biden’s insecurities will spill out on the stage like overturned chum bucket.

It seems that the talk of the Wisconsin Republican’s intelligence has already gotten deep in Mr. Biden’s head.  We don’t have to wait for the debate.  In the week since Mr. Romney introduced Ryan as his running mate, the vice president has had a very bad week, making even more gaffes than is his wont.  As Jim Treacher reports:

On Tuesday, ol’ Sheriff Joe told a majority African-American audience that the Republicans are “gonna put y’all back in chains.”

He also said some other dumb stuff, like promising that together, they could win North Carolina again… as he stood there in Virginia. And hollering that General Motors is going to lead the world in auto production in the 20th Century.

Perhaps the Ryan selection, to borrow Jonah’s expression caused “Biden’s insecurities” to “spill out on the stage like overturned chum bucket.”

In asking (again) for Romney to release tax returns,
Obama just looking for “more fodder for [his] distraction machine”

Early today, Barack Obama’s campaign manager Jim Messina released a letter asking that Mitt Romney release only “five years of returns” offering the assurance that if he does so, he commits “in turn that we will not criticize him for not releasing more–neither in ads nor in other public communications or commentary for the rest of the campaign“:

To provide these five years, the Governor would have to release only three more sets of returns in addition to the 2010 return he has released and the 2011 return he has pledged to provide.  And, I repeat, the Governor and his campaign can expect in return that we will refrain from questioning whether he has released enough or pressing for more.

What the Democrat doesn’t commit to is refraining from using the returns to attack the presumptive Republican nominee, leading Erika Johnsen (one of the bloggers who alerted me to the story) to conclude that 

Wow… Team Obama really wants those tax returns. Whether they believe there’s actually something really damning in them (which I highly doubt), or because they know thatwhatever’s in them they’ll be able to twist into more cheap, populist, class-warmongering appeals (which I highly suspect), they are really hankering for more fodder for their distraction machine.

Read the whole thing.  To be sure, the Obama campaign is trying to make it sound like they’re the reasonable ones here, scaling back their demands for more tax returns. But, Johnsen gets it, what they’re really showing is just how desperate they are to get those returns.  They  just want Romney to help them out in providing fodder for their distraction machine, a shiny object to dangle in front of reporters to keep their political opponent on defense.

ADDENDUM:  The Obama campaign has made clear they intend to use the issue of Romney’s tax returns to attack the presumptive Republican nominee.

Robbing Granny’s health care to pay for Obama’s pet project

So, writes Charles Krauthammer in his thoughtful piece on the meaning of Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate, particularly as it relates to the discussion of Medicare in the current campaign.

The eagerness of Democrats to demagogue Medicare become manifest to me (once again) earlier this morning when on Facebook, I caught a graphic a friend had shared from the “Democrats” page on that social networking site.  With an image of a smiling Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder), they asked whether Republicans thought they could win on Medicare after voting to end it.  They so helped confirm what the sage pundit offered in his column that “The Democrats’ Mediscare barrage is already in full swing”:

Paul Ryan, it seems, is determined to dispossess Grandmother, then toss her over a cliff. If the charge is not successfully countered, good-bye Florida.

Republicans have a twofold answer. First, hammer home that their Medicare plan affects no one over 55, let alone 65. Second, go on offense. Point out that PresidentObama cuts Medicare by $700 billion to finance Obamacare.

It’s a sweet judo throw: Want to bring up Medicare, supposedly our weakness? Fine. But now you’ve got to debate Obamacare, your weakness — and explain why you are robbing Granny’s health care to pay for your pet project.

Read the whole thing.  The second half is particularly compelling — on how Ryan is emerging as the intellectual leader of the GOP.

Ryan’s emergence is a very good sign for the party, particularly for gay and lesbian sympathetic with the Reaganite economic messages, as it shows a focus on regulatory reform, fiscal responsibility and confidence in private enterprise and individual initiative not just as the engines which drive our economic, but the ideals which inform our society.

More on this anon.  I hope.

Watcher of Weasels Winners — August 17 ’12 Edition

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 12:55 pm - August 17, 2012.
Filed under: Blogging,Conservative Ideas

Council Winners