Due to a new claim of a 13-year affair, Herman Cain told several dozen staff members and advisors that he was “reassessing” whether he wanted to continue his quest for the Republican nomination:
In a morning conference call with his advisers, Mr. Cain said that he would make a decision in the coming days about whether to stay in the race after his campaign was rocked by another round of allegations about his sexual conduct.
The call, which was first reported by National Review, came as Mr. Cain was heading to Michigan for a campaign stop on Tuesday evening. He said that he was discussing the future of his campaign with his family and was considering his options.
“This is cause for reassessment,” Mr. Cain said, according to one participant on the call who spoke on condition of anonymity. “During the summer we had to make some reassessments based on our financial situation. We were able to hang in there.”
Mr. Cain denied the accusations from the Atlanta woman, Ginger White. But he acknowledged that the latest report of sexual misconduct might be more difficult to overcome, considering that the first voting is set to take place in five weeks at the Iowa caucuses. He said that he had not lost his enthusiasm to run, but suggested it was a distraction that could be difficult to recover from.
“With this latest one, we have to do an assessment as to whether or not this is going to create too much of a cloud in some peoples’ minds as to whether or not they should support us going forward,” Mr. Cain said, according to the participant on the call.
Admittedly, I don’t listen to much talk radio anymore. Even the talk show hosts that I generally agree with drive me up a wall. But I happened to catch part of Neal Boortz’s interview with Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), who has seen his support rise in his second bid as a Republican, during my lunch hour yesterday. This is significant because Boortz, a self-proclaimed libertarian who supports a very hawkish foreign policy, has been critical of Paul whenever possible.
Maybe I’ve been too hard on Boortz because, to my surprise, he hosted a very well-rounded, fair interview with Paul, discussing everything from foreign policy to the Fed to the media and Barack Obama to the European financial crisis. Perhaps even one of the best that I’ve heard with any candidate. Check it out below:
Could Occupy Wall Street be helping Republicans? Neal Boortz seems to think so:
We’ve seen demonstrations like this before. As George Will writes:
“From 1965 through 1968 the left found its voice and style in consciousness-raising demonstrations and disruptions. In November 1968, the nation, its consciousness raised, elected Richard Nixon President and gave 56.9 percent of the popular vote to Nixon or George Wallace. Republicans won four of the next five presidential elections.”
That’s why I want these protests to continue. Step ‘em up if you Occupiers can manage that as well. I need more occupiers calling my show to tell me that the top 1% of income earners in this country earn “about 75% of all income” and that the corporate tax rate is “15%”. We need more video of occupiers telling America that for every dollar individuals pay in income tax “corporations only pay 25 cents. I know because I read that on-line.” I need to hear from more experienced “activists” who have glommed on to the occupiers push such things like opposition to the death penalty.
These occupiers are the best campaigners the Republicans have right now. Keep it up and keep the spotlight on them. I’m loving it.
As I was perusing the web this morning reading recaps of last night’s Republican debate, I noticed a reoccuring theme. Apparently, Ron Paul directed his question to Herman Cain (each candidate was allowed to ask a question of another) about his issues with an audit of the Federal Reserve. Ed Morrissey briefly recounts the exchange:
Paul scored big on Cain’s Greenspan comments, and also had some good points about overregulation and how both parties have contributed to it. No real crazy moments, but he did get a hard rebuke from Cain after misquoting him and ended up looking contrite.
For reference, here is the exchange between Ron Paul and Herman Cain from last night’s economic debate at Dartmouth College:
REP. PAUL: Since the Federal Reserve is the engine of inflation, creates the business cycle, produces our recessions and our depressions, the Federal Reserve obviously is a very important issue. And fortunately tonight, we have a former director of the Federal Reserve at Kansas City, so I have a question for Mr. Cain.
Mr. Cain, in the past, you’ve been rather critical of any of us who would want to audit the Fed.
Polls haven’t been kind to either side lately, especially in the wake of the budget deal. We’ve noted recently that only 49% of Americans would re-elect their Congressman, which is an astonishing number. But it’s not just Congress that is being lashed out at by seething voters. According to Gallup, President Barack Obama’s approval rating have hit their lowest mark:
President Obama’s approval rating hit an all-time low on Sunday in the Gallup Poll’s rolling average of public opinion of the president.
Thirty-nine percent of Americans said they approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president, eclipsing a previous low point of 40 percent from the Aug. 6-8 edition of the poll.
Fifty-four percent of Americans said they disapprove of the president’s job performance, also an ignominious distinction for being a high point in Gallup’s tracking poll.
It’s certainly ominous as Obama approaches what will be a very contentious election. And while it could just be a blip, it’s not a position anyone wants to find themselves in; especially that the economy is moving so slowly and possibly towards another recession.
A separate poll last week by Gallup showed that 51% of voters don’t believe that Obama deserves re-election and perhaps even more concerning is that independent voters are drifting away from him, according to a CNN poll.
While perusing Twitter the other day, I came across this story:
“Right-wing talk radio may have worn out its welcome, at least for now,” reports Crain’s New York Business.
A new Arbitron report shows Rush Limbaugh’s ratings down 33% from a year ago and Sean Hannitty down 28% over the same time period. Meanwhile, more centrist personalities — Don Imus in the morning and John Batchelor at night — were both up from a year earlier.
Admittedly, I don’t listen to much talk radio these days; but when I first read this story, one point that immediate entered my mind. That is that 2011 is not an election year; so I don’t know that is supposed to be a surprise or somehow shows that “right-wing” talking radio is in decline. The counter to that point is that the GOP presidential race is heating up, so listeners should be tuning in to hear what the talking heads have to say. Not really. It’s still very early on and no one seems very interested in the race right now. It’ll likely jump back up during the summer and into the fall and winter.
It would be interesting to see a comparison with an off-year to the previous election year. Maybe from that we can draw a reasonable conclusion. Or maybe we can look at how conservative radio shows are capitalizing on new medium, as Jeffrey Lord notes over at The American Spectator:
Limbaugh and conservative talkers Sean Hannity and Mark Levin are not only not losing their audience, as low-tech (or is that no-tech?) political critics are braying, the three are so far ahead of the communications curve that their liberal blogger and news outlet political foes are literally clueless even as the revolution unfolds right in front of them.
What mediums, exactly?:
Yeah, I kinda like this idea:
Rep. Tom Reed (R-N.Y.) last week introduced a resolution that would place a clock measuring the U.S. debt in the House chamber as a “visual gesture” that reminds members of the need to reduce spending.
“We are currently borrowing $58,000 per second,” Reed said last week. “We borrow at least forty cents of each dollar we spend. That is unsustainable. The debt clock will be a distinct reminder that our national debt must always be our first consideration as we continue to spend money that we do not have.”
Sometimes-libertarian talk show host Neal Boortz had a good idea awhile back. He floated the idea a few years ago to require an addendum to every spending bill:
The undersigned sponsors of the foregoing legislation do hereby state and affirm their belief that it is more important for the federal government to spend the funds necessary for the implementation of this legislation than it would be for the taxpayer who actually worked for and earned these funds to retain them for use in caring for and investing in the future of their own families.
I’m sure members of both parties would have a problem with that.
While filling in on The Neal Boortz Show on December 29th, Herman Cain launched into a rant defending Federal Reserve and downplaying efforts for an audit. His point was that the Federal Reserve wasn’t doing anything secret, to his knowledge, and that the movement for an audit amounted to nothing more than a lack of understanding as to how the nation’s central bank operates.
Here is a transcript of Cain’s remarks:
[T]he Federal Reserve already has so many audits, it’s ridiculous. I don’t know why people think we’re gonna learn this great amount of information by auditing the Federal Reserve. Now, I no longer serve on the board of the Federal Reserve. I’m not being defensive of the Federal Reserve; in fact, some of the policies and some of the actions of the Federal Reserve, I don’t agree with because the attitude and the non-politization in the 90’s when I served is totally different than what’s going on today. But that’s another matter.
But people who say, “we outta audit the Federal Reserve because we don’t know enough about it.” Well, here’s the advice I’ve given to people who ared worried about an audit of the Federal Reserve; call ‘em up, and ask ‘em if you can stop by and have one of their PR people or one of their Public Relations people explain to you how the Federal Reserve operates.
I think a lot people are calling for this audit fo the Federal Reserve because they don’t know enough about it. There’s no secrets going on in the Federal Reserve, to my knowledge. And I tell people, we’ve got 12 Federal Reserve banks, find out which district you’re in, call ‘em up and go from there.
We don’t need to waste money with another commission, or an audit that’s not necessary, because, folks, we’ve gotta lot of other problems we need to worry about.
Yesterday while speaking at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) explained President Barack Obama’s economic beliefs to attendees:
“In the technical sense, in the economic definition, he is not a socialist,” the Texas Republican said to a smattering of applause at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference.
“He’s a corporatist,” Paul quickly added, meaning the president takes “care of corporations and corporations take over and run the country.”
Republican talk show hosts, such Neal Boortz, Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh, often call Obama a socialist (or Marxist), citing health care or some other policy as proof. Corporatism isn’t as well known socialism, a word that brings out a reaction from people, so that’s probably why they choose socialism. Either that or talking about corporatism would make people realize that Republicans are as bad as Obama.