On that conservative Rorschach test, Liz Cheney has the best suggestion yet on the Nobel Peace Prize “farce”: send the mother of a fallen American soldier to accept it “to remind the Nobel committee that each one of them sleeps soundly at night because the U.S. military is the greatest peacekeeping force in the world today.” Even Obama doesn’t think he deserves the prize, she notes. Watch the whole thing — and see why she may be the most effective conservative voice on national security.
At the other end of the “How solid is this pol’s conservative instincts?” spectrum, Lindsay Graham — fresh from supporting Sonia Sotomayor — goes whole hog for cap-and-trade legislation in an op-ed with John Kerry. ”In supporting the push for legislation, Graham is breaking with other top Republicans, many of whom warn that the Kerry-Boxer bill amounts to a ‘national energy tax.’ The House passed its version months ago, but the Senate sat on language for the bill until two weeks ago.” What, we haven’t lost enough jobs yet?
Rich Lowry thinks the Right should give Obama a prize for, among other things, energizing conservative opposition and sending independents scurrying for the GOP: “No, Obama hasn’t turned back the oceans. But revivifying conservatism almost before books announcing its death could be published qualifies as a feat almost as miraculous.”
Gay voters better hope Obama’s deadline for ending “Don’t ask, don’t tell” is more definitive than his Iran “needs to negotiate seriously” deadline(s).
Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell has a solid lead (8 points) in yet another poll.
So naturally, Virginia Democratic candidates are trying to distance themselves from Creigh Deeds — “you’re starting to see the Democratic candidates proactively cite organizations that support them and McDonnell, to try to win that crossover [vote].”
Karl Rove on Creigh Deeds’s problems: “The candidate who first makes abortion an issue generally loses. Deeds inexplicably raised the issue by attacking McDonnell as pro-life, then compounded his mistake by devoting months to other social issues, while McDonnell talked about jobs, education and transportation. Deeds’s assault on McDonnell’s 20-year-old college thesis was ham-handed. Nothing falls flatter than an over-the-top attack. … West Wing officials are trashing Deeds’s hapless campaign, perhaps as an excuse for the president’s not campaigning: They don’t want Obama tied to a political loss or appearing too partisan now.”
More bad polling data for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
John Bolton on the Nobel Peace Prize: “Unable to vote in America’s 2008 presidential election, the Nobel Committee apparently decided to vote this year, making their ideological perspective unmistakable. . . . Ronald Reagan also aspired to a world without nuclear weapons. Where is his Nobel Peace Prize? Obviously, Reagan was not the right kind of American, not one appealing to the Norwegian and broader European Left. Their message really is quite straightforward: ‘Jimmy Carter in 2002, Al Gore in 2007 and now Barack Obama. Do you Americans get the point yet?’ It is precisely the preachiness and attitude of moral superiority inherent in these awards that many Americans find offensive, and which may, ironically, leave President Obama in a more difficult position here and abroad than before the award.”
John McCain goes after the Obama’s national-security brain trust: ” ‘I was right about the surge and they were all wrong about the surge.’ By ‘they,’ he meant the president, Vice President Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Gen. James Jones, the national security adviser. ‘The president was wrong,’ McCain said. ‘He said it wouldn’t succeed. The vice president wanted to divide Iraq into three parts. The secretary of state said [in response to Petraeus's optimistic testimony about progress in Iraq in September 2007] you had to suspend disbelief, or some clever statement.’ ” Ouch.
And on Sunday, McCain warned Obama not to make an “error of historic proportions” by choosing a “half-measure” strategy.
Sen. Diane Feinstein maintains her reputation as one of the saner Democrats: “The Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee also seemed to back a troop surge Sunday, saying it would be very difficult for the president to ignore the advice of his commanders. ‘I don’t know how you put somebody in, who is as cracker jack as Gen. McChrystal, who makes very solid recommendations to the president, and not take those recommendations,’ [she] said on ABC’s ‘This Week.’ ”
What if Obama follows the advice of General Biden instead of General McChrystal? “The general who helped craft the Iraq surge says if he were in charge of Afghanistan he would resign if President Obama didn’t take his advice. Analysts and pundits have speculated for weeks about what General Stanley McChrystal might do if the president rejects his call for up to 40,000 more troops. Retired Gen. Jack Keane, the former vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, said if put in that position he would resign. Keane said it would be impossible for him to ‘ask the troops to go out and do something else that you don’t believe will accomplish [your] goals.’ ”
The New York Times (of all outlets) observes that, when it comes to the public’s patience for fighting a war, “a lack of clear progress is what really depresses support — and a clear victory is what lifts it up.” So maybe Obama should do whatever it takes to win in Afghanistan as quickly as possible.