Today’s edition in restoring your faith in humanity:
The man who secretly filmed Mitt Romney’s 47% fundraiser speech to the 1% will be interviewed tonight on MSNBC by Ed Shultz. Why did he do it? Well, it turns out that simple manners, and respect and concern for the staff goes a long way.
Prior to his political fame, the filmmaker worked as a bartender for a high-end catering company. Before that company was hired for the Romney event, it catered a dinner at which Bill Clinton spoke. The bartender/Romney-ruiner told the Huffington Post that after the speech, Clinton went to the kitchen to thank the staff, posing for photographs and signing autographs.
So when the bartender heard about the Romney event, he decided to bring his camera with him, just in case the candidate met with the staff like Clinton did. But because he’s Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate didn’t greet or thank any of the staff working the event, and rushed out shortly after his speech, though not before bartender secretly filmed it, noting that Romney told the dinner guests it was off the record but not the staff working the event.
The Democrats need a net gain of 18 seats in 2014 to win back control of the House, which sounds like a tall order given the mid term election historical patterns. But doing so is the president’s top political goal going forward, and it is a national imperative as, given the current Republican Party, divided government is dysfunctional government. In that effort, Pennsylvania is a crucial battlefield as it has three to five congressional districts where, while a Republican is the incumbent and is favored, they are the kind of swing districts that the Dems need to win to win the House back, and thus Obama is sure to be there. According to Robert Vickers of the Central Pennsylvania Patriot News, that means trouble for Republican Governor Tom Corbett.
Ross Douthat reacts to the Ryan “Budget:”
[The budget] sacrificed seriousness for “seriousness,” by promising to reach budgetary balance not over the long term (as budgets 1.0 and 2.0 did) but in a ten-year window. This is not going to happen, and more importantly there’s no reason why it needs to happen: Modest deficits are perfectly compatible with fiscal responsibility, and restructuring the biggest drivers of our long-term debt is a much more important conservative goal than holding revenues and outlays equal in the year 2023. What’s more, the quest for perfect balance leaves the House G.O.P. officially committed to a weird, all-pain version of Obamanomics — in which, for instance, we keep the president’s tax increases and Medicare cuts while eliminating his health care law’s assistance to the uninsured.
How Ezra Klein sees the “plan:”
Ryan’s budget is intended to do nothing less than fundamentally transform the relationship between Americans and their government. That, and not deficit reduction, is its real point, as it has been Ryan’s real point throughout his career.