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Flotsam and Jetsam

Bill Clinton draws a “surprisingly small crowd” at a Virginia rally for his moneyman, now gubernatorial candidate, Terry McAuliffe. Bill is no longer a crowd-magnet? How quickly they forget.

Well, according to this poll the problem isn’t McAuliffe, who has pulled out a lead in the primary.

John McCain’s campaign chief is picking Mitt Romney for 2012. Or looking for a job.

Arlen Specter isn’t being welcomed with open arms by other Democratic Senate candidates. Really, if you’ve been a loyal Democrat why would you move out of the way so a 79-year old Republican who apparently doesn’t believe in much of anything can hang on to his seat for one more term?

Reporters Without Borders starts a hunger strike in support of Roxana Saberi. Iran’s judiciary chief denies Saberi is on a hunger strike, as her father has reported, and insists she is “in good physical condition.” Well, the Iranians could allow her attorney to meet with her and/or allow her to be photographed to clear this up. Perhaps Obama could “engage” Iran on this point.

In April Fox has “just beaten CNN and MSNBC combined in every hour from 6pm to midnight — that’s in both total viewers and the key demo (age 25-54).”

Getting their story straight? “Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee huddled with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Tuesday night as Republicans turned up the pressure about whether Democrats had objected in 2002 to interrogation policies they deem illegal.But committee members said their meeting was about improving the nation’s intelligence gathering, not responding to Republicans.” Well, if it’s about improving intelligence why are only Democrats meeting?

Another poll showing the gap between Obama’s personal popularity and his policies: “Already, 52% of people said Mr. Obama is trying to take on too many issues besides the economy.One area where Mr. Obama has run against public opinion involves the debate over past use of torture in interrogations. A majority, 53%, disapproved of the president’s decision to release memos detailing these methods. Further, a clear majority, 61%, opposes a criminal investigation into whether torture was committed during the Bush administration.”

And a  47-46% split on whether government should do more or is already doing too much. On Obama specifically, a margin of 52-43% says he’s doing too much besides working on the economy. Oddly, nothing was asked specifically on how voters feel about a $3.6 trillion budget or the mound of debt we’re piling up. But there were lots of questions about Michelle Obama (people like her).

The Washington Post notes North Korea is mimicking their Iranian role models by snatching U.S. journalists: “No doubt Pyongyang realizes that live hostages are better than a crumbling nuclear facility; it surely took note when Iran, which has received loads of attention from the new American president, put American journalist Roxana Saberi on trial this month.” Could it be that the president’s behavior is inviting challenge? Engagement has its price.



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