Commentary Magazine


Flotsam and Jetsam

Cliff May on the non-scandal about CIA “brainstorming” ideas to bump off high level al Qaeda operatives: “In a sane world, the scandal would be that for eight years our multibillion-dollar intelligence community only ‘brainstormed’ about dispatching agents to eliminate al-Qaeda operative wherever they could be found.If this mindset had prevailed in an earlier generation, U.S. troops would have landed in Normandy about 1959.”

The latest bad news for Governor Jon Corzine: “Republican challenger Christopher Christie is pulling away from Democratic incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine and now holds a 53 – 41 percent lead among likely voters in the New Jersey Governor’s race, according to a Quinnipiac University poll…. By a 39 – 20 percent margin, New Jersey likely voters have a favorable opinion of Christie, while 40 percent say they don’t know enough about him to form an opinion. Corzine gets a negative 34 – 58 percent favorability.” We’ll see just how much time Obama spends trying to help him.

This might be part of Corzine’s problem: “For the week ending on June 27th, New Jersey had the largest increase [for any state] in initial claims adding an addition 7,876 in just one week.”

Well, at least the president now is being honest: he says he doesn’t know “how high unemployement will go.”

And his economic advisor Christina Romer has given up on trying to make up a number for jobs “saved or created”: “It’s very hard to say exactly because you don’t know what the baseline is, right, because you don’t know what the economy would have done without it.”

Bob McDonnell has $5M (double what his opponent has) in cash on hand.

Marco Rubio doesn’t like the ”wise Latina” message.

Can health care be jammed through on a 51-vote majority through the reconciliation process in the Senate? Maybe, but it gets very complicated. A good explanation is here.

The better question: would Democrats have the nerve to pass nationalized health care and a massive tax hikes with only 51 votes? Tom Daschle and Bob Dole both warn against a straight partisan vote. “‘I hope it doesn’t come to that,’ Dole said. ‘If there’s not a Senate Republican vote for the package, then the American people are going to be very skeptical.’” The Democrats have 60 votes in the Senate to 40 for the Republicans, and have a 255-178 advantage in the House, with two vacancies. Daschle said he “couldn’t agree more” with Dole’s warning about the political fallout from a partisan vote. Moreover, he expressed doubt that Democrats alone could prevail, because that scenario “assumes unanimity” he said, and that isn’t the case.

A helpful breakdown on the cost, the taxes, and just how dishonest the accounting is, here.

Will Obama really veto the F-22 funding bill? “Several senior Democrats may defy party leaders on an important defense vote — and the behind-the-scenes arm-twisting is dividing the party’s Senate majority. President Obama personally vowed to veto any defense bill containing additional funds for the F-22 fighter jet program.” After all they could “save or create” 95,000 jobs.