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Dick Cheney vs. Joe Biden (and why it's good for Democrats)

1. The twin appearances by Vice President Biden and former vice president Dick Cheney on Sunday talk shows yesterday were highly anticipated by political junkies and, by and large, they delivered. Cheney, appearing on "This Week" with Jon Karl, took umbrage with President Obama's initial description of the attempted Christmas Day bombing as the work of an "isolated extremist," arguing that it is evidence of a "mindset" that suggests the current administration does not understand the state of play with regard to the central national security issue of the post-9/11 world. "What the administration was slow to do was to come to that recognition that we are at war, not dealing with criminal acts," Cheney told Karl. Biden, who appeared on "Meet the Press" and "Face the Nation," pulled no punches when talking about Cheney. "All I know is he's factually, substantively wrong on the major criticisms he is asserting," Biden said of Cheney. "Why he's insisting on that, he either is misinformed or he is misinforming. But the facts are that his assertions are not accurate." While today's coverage is sure to focus on the Cheney versus Biden dynamic, the underlying debate is a good one for the White House for two reasons. First, the most recent Washington Post/ABC poll showed President Obama's approval ratings on most domestic issues were mediocre but on the issue of terrorism his numbers were strong with 56 percent approving of his handling of the issue and 39 percent disapproving. Given that data, Republican strategists would much prefer a message focused on the economy and health care rather than terrorism. Second, as we've noted before, Cheney is a flawed messenger at best. In an Associated Press survey conducted in mid-January just 38 percent had a favorable impression of Cheney while 55 percent saw the former vice president in an unfavorable light. The more Cheney talks -- about almost anything -- the more people (especially independent voters) are reminded about what they didn't like about the last administration. And, that's very good for the Obama White House.

2. With just 15 days left before the Texas Republican primary, Gov. Rick Perry has moved into a commanding lead over Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, according to a new poll conducted for five of Lone Star State's largest newspapers. Perry received 45 percent to Hutchison's 29 percent. Debra Medina, who was picking up momentum until she suggested that the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks might have been an inside job, was at 17 percent. The numbers inside the poll were equally dispiriting for Hutchison's chances. Perry had the most committed supporters with 66 percent saying they were "absolutely certain" they would vote for him on March 2; 56 percent said the same of Hutchison. Tested against likely Democratic nominee Houston Mayor Bill White, Hutchison led 42 percent to 34 percent while Perry held a 43 percent to 37 percent edge -- results that undermine Hutchison's argument that she is the far stronger general election candidate for Republicans. There is much talk that Medina's support, which was largely born of a distaste for the two frontrunning candidates, may collapse in the wake of her 9/11 comments; if it does, her supporters -- the most conservative, anti-government element of the party are a more natural fit in Perry's camp.

3. Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha's widow, Joyce, is the subject of intense speculation that she may step in to fill out the remainder of her late husband's term, a move that would significantly strengthen Democrats' chances of winning the special election expected to be held on May 18. Joyce Murtha will make no decision or announcement until after her husband's funeral, which is set for tomorrow, according to an informed Democratic source. If Joyce Murtha does run, she is likely to clear the Democratic field. If she decides against the contest, there is likely to be stiff competition for the nomination, which will be decided at county conventions across the southwestern Pennsylvania seat. Among the Democrats mentioned: former Lt. Gov. Mark Singel, former state Treasurer Barbara Hafer and state Sen. John Wozniak. The seat, which is the only one in the country that went for Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) in 2004 and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in 2008, is regarded as competitive by the two parties. Democrats have won five straight House special elections while Republicans view the seat as a chance to build momentum heading into November.

4. A new Des Moines Register poll shows Gov. Chet Culver (D) in extremely tough shape for his reelection race this fall. Roughly one in three voters (36 percent) approve of the job Culver is doing while 53 percent disapprove -- the first time in the Register poll that Culver's disapproval score is above 50 percent. Even among his supposed base, Culver struggles; just 37 percent of labor households approve of the job he is doing while 57 percent disapprove. Not surprisingly, Culver doesn't perform particularly well in head-to-head matchups with leading Republicans. Former four-term Gov. Terry Branstad (R) leads Culver by a 53 percent percent to 33 percent margin while 2006 lieutenant governor nominee Bob Vander Plaats held a more narrow 43 percent to 40 percent edge. While the news in the poll wasn't good for Culver, it did bring out some of the best/worst spin we've heard since Joe Lieberman's "three-way tie for third" comment in the 2004 New Hampshire Democratic primary. Iowa Democratic Party Chairman Michael Kiernan, despite his candidate trailing by 20 points, issued this statement about the Register data: "Branstad should have gone up in the polls after announcing." Riiiight.

5. Ned Lamont, the man who ousted Sen. Joe Lieberman in the 2006 Connecticut Democratic primary only to lose the general election to Lieberman running as an independent, will formally enter the open seat governor's race tomorrow, according to the Hartford Courant. Lamont will face off with Stamford Mayor Dannel Malloy, who narrowly lost the 2006 Democratic governor's primary; in a recent Quinnipiac poll, Lamont led Malloy 27 percent to 11 percent but more than four in ten (44 percent) of Democratic voters didn't have a preference in the primary. Lamont, who spent $16 million of his own money in his 2006 race, has brought on a brand new consulting team for this bid. Joe Abbey, who managed state Sen. Creigh Deeds' Virginia governor's bid last fall, will play the same role for Lamont. Fred Yang will handle the poll, Doc Schweitzer the ads and Jim Crounse the direct mail effort.

By Chris Cillizza  |  February 15, 2010; 6:03 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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My JD (and undergraduate degree) is from Stanford U., but I am retired with plenty of time to waste here. Do you want to back up the argument that Cheney lied at all in this interview now?

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 16, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Creepy Veepy Dick, " I wasn't drinking when I shot my friend in the face" Cheney, is now making more public statements than he did when he was V-Pres. I can see why. He is so far off the beam that he is frightening. His statement that he still supports waterboarding is very very troubling. Waterboarding is an acknowledged war crime and this guy still publically supports that practice??? How far from decent human values can one person go? This guy is morally bankrupt and those who bend themselves into pretzels to defend him are even more corrupt. The Bush administration took this country out of the mainstream of decent human behavior on a few pretexts used to justify criminal behavior, but no matter the excuse, it is still morally false. Dick Cheney and his daughter Liz would do us all a big favor by just fading away. To continue to hang on to the criminal positions they hold and believe in, makes all Americans look bad.
Continued assertions that the present administration is not doing a very good job at stopping terrorism is almost unpatriotic and certainly gives terrorists incentive to continue trying to terrorize America. In fact, it is UNPATRIOTIC.

Posted by: rslip | February 16, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

oops sorry that was Halburton

Posted by: Americacares | February 16, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Let us not forget that Cheney is under indictment in England for bribery charges regarding Black Water.

Posted by: Americacares | February 16, 2010 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Given the amount of time JakeD spends on all of these chats, is it by now painfully obvious that (1) his JD, if he has one, is from Regent U. and (2) that he doesn't have a job?

Posted by: pcpatterson | February 16, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone else want to back up the argument that Cheney lied?

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 16, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Then jaked admits he remembers Nixon well, and well, he didn't ACTUALLY remember that Barry Goldwater VOTED against Nixon. How weaselly was that? Of course it never got to a vote. Goldwater was one of the three Republicans who met with Nixon on the day before he resigned. I learned everything I needed to know about jaked from that encounter. He's legalistic and just wants to count coup. He likes to parse words, so that he can win even when he loses the larger point. What a waste.


if you presume that everything posted by that belly-pissing cur JakeD us a lie you'll never go wrong. He's garbage.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 16, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I "care" so does anyone else want to back up the argument thar Cheney lied?

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 16, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Couple of points here:

Who cares what Dick Cheney says about anything? He is politically unpopular and clearly the country would like to move on from his administration. If anything, he should be investigated for his role in energy policy, no-bid contracts, and the Iraq War. He is very lucky the Obama/Biden team decided not to pursue this because the liberals would like nothing more than to put him on trial.

Secondly, I was against having criminal trials in public only because it would create a circus around it, which it clearly has. I think Obama/Holder made a mistake here but not for the reasons Cheney cites. There is no plain or ambiguous language in the constitution on the rights of non-citizens. It's a gray zone where historically the US has applied constitutional rights at some times and not at others. Cheney is just talking about what they did during their administration and acting like there was some great precedent here which really there wasn't. In fact most terrorism cases involving the US have been tried in criminal courts either in the US or in criminal courts in other countries, which runs contrary to anything Cheney can claim.

Lastly, I would add that Cheney is sending out mixed messages by saying "we are at war." A good lawyer could use that to apply Geneva Conventions protections to their clients. Cheney keeps saying "we are at war" but that war crimes do not apply here. His own reasoning might create the kind of legal scenarios he is trying the US Gov't to avoid.

Posted by: gmro | February 16, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Back on topic, I could keep pasting the entire Cheney interview transcript. No one has even argued any specific "lie" from anything so far, even Biden couldn't point out a specific "lie". What is curious, however, is that Biden taped his "Meet the Press" appearance on SATURDAY night from Vancouver before Cheney's interview was even broadcast. How did Biden know that Cheney was "misinformed or misinforming" before it was broadcast and why can no one point out a specific instance of that even two days later?

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 16, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Doe v. Bush, 323 F.3d 133 (1st Cir. 2003), was a court case challenging the constitutionality of the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The case was dismissed, since the plaintiffs failed "to raise a sufficiently clear constitutional issue." The Authorization for Use of Military Force ("AUMF") Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 was challenged by "a coalition of U.S. soldiers, parents of U.S. soldiers, and members of Congress" prior to the invasion to stop it from happening. They claimed that an invasion of Iraq would be illegal. Judge Lynch wrote of their argument, "They base this argument on two theories. They argue that Congress and the President are in collision -- that the President is about to act in violation of the October Resolution. They also argue that Congress and the President are in collusion -- that Congress has handed over to the President its exclusive power to declare war."[2]

The case was dismissed on February 24, 2003 by Judge Joseph Tauro of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. The petitioners appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. On March 13, a three-judge panel affirmed the decision to dismiss the complaint. The opinion was written by Judge Sandra Lea Lynch:

"An extreme case might arise, for example, if Congress gave absolute discretion to the President to start a war at his or her will... Plaintiffs' objection to the October Resolution does not, of course, involve any such claim. Nor does it involve a situation where the President acts without any apparent congressional authorization, or against congressional opposition... To the contrary, Congress has been deeply involved in significant debate, activity, and authorization connected to our relations with Iraq for over a decade, under three different presidents of both major political parties, and during periods when each party has controlled Congress."

Lynch also cited Massachusetts v. Laird 451 F.2d 26 (1st Cir. 1971), which similarly found that the Vietnam War was constitutional. Lynch concluded that the Judiciary could not intervene, because there was not a fully developed conflict between the President and Congress at that time. On March 17, the plaintiffs filed for a rehearing. Their petition was denied the next day.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse


You are wrong. I am well aware of what Congress asserts (from the Boland Anendments to the War Powers Act). Guess which way the ROBERTS Court would rule? The Vietnam war was specfically "legal" despite the absence of a formal declaration of war. As I said, I would be happy to argue the Unitary Executive theory with you as well.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

hey, mm,

Catch this. On the following thread, SuzyCcup thinks that "dogsbestfriend" should change his moniker.

You can't make this stuff up, can you.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

A new Right Wing Fairy Tale: Dick Cheney only wants what's right for all of us.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

The only way out for the Congressional democrats is to get Obama to resign - it is either the democrats lose all those leadership positions and committee chairmanships - or they find a way to get Obama to resign.

Maybe the dems can arrange a car accident in a Paris tunnel...or better yet, get Obama to Roswell and beam him up...or better yet, put a red bonnet on him and send him to grandma's house.

Do you live in fantasyland?

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

The only way out for the Congressional democrats is to get Obama to resign - it is either the democrats lose all those leadership positions and committee chairmanships - or they find a way to get Obama to resign.

Which would you rather have?

Why should Obama continue on when every other democrat in Congress loses their leadership position - when it is Obama's fault to begin with?

No wonder why Bayh and Kennedy are leading the way out.


Posted by: 37thand0street | February 15, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Actually the AUMF isn't "technically the same as a declaration of war". It is quite different. This was made clear at the time by the Congressional leaders when they passed it. Also, the Bush administration has argued this very point-of-view in court. (I'm sorry I cannot find the reference for the last point, but I read it in the past week or so somewhere.)

Posted by: rick_desper | February 15, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Fox Business interviewed Wellpoint executive. You know, the guys who are jacking rates up 39% in California. After yukking it up, the interviewer says to the Wellpoint guy:

"PAYNE: But Brad this is like Jaws 2, just when you thought it was safe to get out of the healthcare debate, you brought everybody back into it. [...]

Didn’t someone though, wasn’t there a committee that said listen, let’s take Wall Street’s lead, do the minimum we can, wait for this to blow over and maybe a year from now try to hike rates?"

Decent people would be ashamed to admit this in public.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Anthem Blue Cross has agreed to delay their 39% rate increase until May 1. This morning, Steve Poizner, the current Insurance Commissioner and GOP candidate for governor, stated that he's going to hold Blue Cross's feet to the fire.

He stated that BC better be following the "letter and spirit" of the law.

I guess the GOP in California has gotten the memo. No more of this "let the free market RULE".

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Cheney is important for the Republicans because they need someone out there framing the national security issues.

Sending Biden out there does not help Obama -

It only puts a face on Obama's weakness.


Posted by: 37thand0street | February 15, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse


The GOP including Cheney accused critics of the Iraq war of "aiding and abetting the enemy" because that's what they were doing. Now that the White House is actually "aiding and abetting the enemy" the GOP including Cheney is calling them out on it too. Sounds incredibly consistent to me. As always YMMV.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

I stand behind 100% of my comments.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 4:15 PM
We all have learned that this is painfully true, even to the point of boring us all to death.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

At least we can all agree it is a "waste" trying to reason with someone who thinks that Goldwater VOTED against Nixon yet admits, of course, it never got to an impeachment VOTE. Same kinda thing saying that Cheney "lied" during his interview. I stand behind 100% of my comments.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse


Speaking of defending losers, and why people would want to do that--

When I first found this blog, a poster, jaked, was making the absurd claim that Richard Nixon resigned out of honor. I assumed that jaked must not be very old, because no one who remembered Nixon would have thought of him as the kind who would resign out of honor. LOL.

Nixon was one tough sob, and the reason he left office is because the Republican leadership met with him and told him the game was up. That was widely reported at the time.

Then jaked admits he remembers Nixon well, and well, he didn't ACTUALLY remember that Barry Goldwater VOTED against Nixon. How weaselly was that? Of course it never got to a vote. Goldwater was one of the three Republicans who met with Nixon on the day before he resigned. I learned everything I needed to know about jaked from that encounter. He's legalistic and just wants to count coup. He likes to parse words, so that he can win even when he loses the larger point. What a waste.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse


Legally, the AUMF is equivalent to a declaration of war. There are no "magic words" as long as Congress is going along. Thank you, at least, for admitting that there's no Cheney "lie" per se. I would be happy to argue the Unitary Executive theory with you as well.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Yeah "anyone else" want to dignify this cringing half-wit with a response? "in a civil manner?"

time to switch monikers, creep

Posted by: Noacoler | February 15, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else?

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

. He is clearly banking on America getting hit again in order to scream "I told you so!" in the hopes of having history look favorably on him


Obama's first act after lowering his right arm should have been to call the seargant at arms and order Bush's and Cheney's arrest. That was the first disappointment, many to follow.

Whether or not you believe Cheney was in on the planning of the attacks, I will never believe that our glacial response that morning wasn't the result of direct official impediment. Not after 55 years of hair-trigger Cold War readiness.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 15, 2010 3:15 PM | Report abuse

As if Jake has the basic cognitive ability to distinguish truth from falsehood, the guy universally known to be a wretched compulsive liar. Yeah the law doctorate who believes the world was sneezed into being by his imaginary playmate back during Sumerian civilization. Anyway.

(1) Cheney said his prediction that American invaders would be welcomed as liberators turned out to be "substantially correct.". Big fat lie. Nobody welcomes an invader.

(2) Cheney says, a note of panic in his voice, that Obama seeks to "restructure American society.". A big fat lie that seeks to motivate an assassin.

Jake and Dick. Birds of a feather. Despicable people, compulsive liars. Both ejected, both screaming for attention anyway.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 15, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Just years ago members of the GOP including Cheney accused critics of the Iraq war of "aiding and abetting the enemy". Now Cheney is taking it beyond that and attacking every move this POTUS makes in an attempt to rewrite history and score political points for "his team". He is clearly banking on America getting hit again in order to scream "I told you so!" in the hopes of having history look favorably on him. Cheney, you had your chance! You failed to protect us on 911, you failed to get Bin Ladin and you failed to uphold our American values. Do us all a favor and slither back under your rock in Jackson Hole where you belong!

Posted by: dropdeadpolitics | February 15, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Again, if anyone else can point out a "lie" by Cheney, let me know.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

I think Jaked identifies with Cheney. Cheney is the biggest weasel alive, I think we can all agree to that, and he is such a *mean* weasel. Really, Cheney is the meanest, weaseliest guy on the planet... and I think Jaked admires that.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 1:57 PM
I totally agree with your last comment. Jake goes out of his way to be mean, not kind and weaselly (is that a word?), not straightforward.

Also, Cheney is so "yesterday" and so rapidly is the Iraq war. Is it just me--is talk about Cheney/Iraq is beginning to sound like the never ending debate about who "actually" won the Civil War. Groan.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Cheney said:
"that recognition that we are at war, not dealing with criminal acts"

I don't know why Cheney views these as mutually exclusive. I know that many of his actions are borne of a flawed reading of the Constitution that creates the fiction that the President of the United States is the overlord, who may (and should) use extra-legal measures whenever he sees the fit.

This is not so much a "lie" per se, but it diverges radically from our traditional concepts of rule of law.

Also, technically speaking, we are not "at war" with any random individual that happens to try to commit an act of violence. There is a real, legal meaning to being "at war" and it requires a declaration of war, which the United States hasn't had since 1941.

Oh, we have all sorts of metaphorical wars - the "war on poverty", the "war on drugs" and now the "war on terror". One shared characteristic of all of these metaphorical wars is that since they are against abstractions rather than nation-states, they cannot possibly end in a victory.

What Cheney says about the war in Iraq is noteworthy. At some point, the Democratic leadership decided to play along with the Republicans and pretend that what we've achieved there is a "success". Given that our pretense for invasion was faulty, it's hard to take that argument very seriously. But this concession to a b.s. argument is emblematic of what is killing the Democratic leadership - a manifest lack of core beliefs that they are willing to push for.

Posted by: rick_desper | February 15, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

I think Jaked identifies with Cheney. Cheney is the biggest weasel alive, I think we can all agree to that, and he is such a *mean* weasel. Really, Cheney is the meanest, weaseliest guy on the planet... and I think Jaked admires that.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

They say you can tell a lot about a man by who he defends. If he always defends losers, it tells you he secretly thinks of himself as a loser.

So, who does Jake defend?

He types lines and lines and lines of Cheney quotes that none of us are even reading because we already heard the interview. Is this some kind of ploy, to bore the rest of us into a coma?

Posted by: 12BarBlues | February 15, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I've blocked it out of my mind, Margaret. The horror. The horror.

Posted by: JakeD3 | February 15, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

What did Chris ever do to Jaked?

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

KARL: Now, I'd like to read you something that the sentencing judge reading the -- giving him his life sentence read to Richard Reid at the time of that sentencing. Here it is. He said to Reid, "You are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist. You are not a soldier in any war. To give you that reference, to call you a soldier gives you far too much stature. We do not negotiate with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice."

The judge in that case was a Reagan appointee. Doesn't he make a good point?

CHENEY: Well, I don't think so, in a sense that it -- if it -- if you interpret that as taking you to the point where all of these people are going to be treated as though they're guilty of individual criminal acts.

I want to come back again to the basic point I tried to make at the outset, John. And up until 9/11, all terrorist attacks were criminal acts. After 9/11, we made the decision that these were acts of war, these were strategic threats to the United States.

Once you make that judgment, then you can use a much broader range of tools, in terms of going after your adversary. You go after those who provide them safe harbor and sanctuary. You go after those who finance and those who provide weapons for them and those who train them. And you treat them as unlawful enemy combatants.

There's a huge distinction here in terms of the kinds of policies you put in place going forward. And what I'm most concerned about isn't so much argument about all the stuff in the past, about what happened to Abdulmutallab or Richard Reid. I think the relevant point is: What are the policies going to be going forward?

And if you're really serious and you believe this is a war and if you believe the greatest threat is a 9/11 with nukes or a 9/11 with a biological agent of some kind, then you have to consider it as a war, you have to consider it as something we may have to deal with tomorrow. You don't want the vice president of the United States running around saying, "Oh, it's not likely to happen."

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

KARL: OK. So -- so was it a mistake when your administration took on the Richard Reid case? This is very similar. This was somebody that was trying to blow up an airliner with a shoe bomb, and he was within five minutes of getting taken off that plane read his Miranda rights, four times, in fact, in 48 hours, and tried through the civilian system. Was that a mistake?

CHENEY: Well, first of all, I believe he was not tried. He pled guilty. They never did end up having a trial.

Secondly, when this came up, as I recall, it was December of '01, just a couple of months after 9/11. We were not yet operational with the military commissions. We hadn't had all the Supreme Court decisions handed down about what we could and couldn't do with the commissions.

KARL: But you still had an option to put him into military custody.

CHENEY: Well, we could have put him into military custody. I don't -- I don't question that. The point is, in this particular case, all of that was never worked out, primarily because he pled guilty.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

KARL: OK, let's get to -- you mentioned Eric Holder, the treatment of the Christmas Day underwear bomber. How do you think that case should have been dealt with?

CHENEY: I think the -- the proper way to -- to deal with it would have been to treat him as an enemy combatant. I think that was the right way to go.

The thing I learned from watching that process unfold, though, was that the administration really wasn't equipped to deal with the aftermath of an attempted attack against the United States in the sense that they didn't know what to do with the guy.

There was talk earlier after they'd dismantled the system we'd put in place for prisoner interrogation of high-value detainees. They'd gone out supposedly to create the HIG, high-value interrogation program, but in reality, it was not up and running at Christmastime when it should have been. It started months before that, to put that in place. They need a process, a set of institutions that they can fall back on. Admittedly, this is hard. We had a hard time dealing with this. You've got the Supreme Court on one side that -- that is going to evaluate everything you do, and you've got to be careful with that. The Congress gets involved in it.

CHENEY: So I'm not saying it's an easy task, but by this point, when they've made all the decisions they've had, closed Guantanamo, end (ph) the high-value detainee program and so forth, I think those are all mistakes. Those were the tools we put in place to deal with this kind of situation. They should have had something to put in lieu of those programs, and it would look like they do not have -- have that kind of capability yet.

KARL: If you have somebody in custody like Abdulmutallab, after just trying to blow up an airliner, and you think he has information on another attack, I mean, do you think that those enhanced interrogation techniques should have been -- should have been used? I mean, would you -- do you think that he should have been, for instance, subject to everything, including waterboarding?

CHENEY: Well, I think the -- the professionals need to make that judgment. We've got people in -- we had in our administration -- I'm sure they're still there -- many of them were career personnel -- who are expects in this subject. And they are the ones that you ought to turn somebody like Abdulmutallab over to, let them be the judge of whether or not he's prepared to cooperate and how they can best achieve his cooperation.

KARL: But you believe they should have had the option of everything up to and including waterboarding?

CHENEY: I think you ought to have all of those capabilities on the table. Now, President Obama has taken them off the table. He announced when he came in last year that they would never use anything other than the U.S. Army manual, which doesn't include those techniques. I think that's a mistake.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Lamont ought to be in good shape. Gov Rell knew she'd get destroyed by ANYBODY who ran against her as her last few years have been spent nurturing a big ol' deficit and then when revenues dropped in the recession failing to make unpopular decisions by just handing it all off to local areas.

Mayors and city councils are going nuts as funding from the state has disappeared and each municipality tries to figure out a way to stay afloat. That's Repub leadership for it up and then drop the floor out from under you. They'll be back in a few years once things have gotten ironed out and the cycle begins again.

Posted by: theobserver4 | February 15, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

"Anthem Blue Cross' proposed 39 percent rate increases in California have become a new rallying point for the Obama administration and Democrats eager to get health care reform across the finish line.

The issue gives President Obama and Democrats a new enemy that can help drive home the need to fix the health care system, and they won't be letting up any time soon, administration and Congressional sources tell TPMDC.

There will be Congressional hearings this month and Obama has held it up as an example.

Already they have seen results, with Anthem agreeing to delay the hikes until May. and Americans United for Change have flagged the rate hikes for members and Democrats are trumpeting a Los Angeles Times editorial that says the increases are a new boost for reform efforts.'

Posted by: drindl | February 15, 2010 11:38 AM | Report abuse

KARL: Another thing from the vice president, he also addressed the possibility of another 9/11-style attack.


BIDEN: The idea of there being a massive attack in the United States like 9/11 is unlikely, in my view. But if you see what's happening, particularly with Al Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, they have decided to move in a direction of much more small-bore, but devastatingly frightening attacks.


KARL: Is he right?

CHENEY: I don't think so. And I would point to a study that was released just within the last week or two up at the Kennedy School at Harvard by a gentleman -- Mowatt-Larssen's his name, I believe. He was CIA for 23 years, director of intelligence at the Energy Department for a long time, that looks at this whole question of weapons of mass destruction and Al Qaida and comes to the conclusion that there's a very high threat that Al Qaida is trying very hard to acquire a weapon of mass destruction and, if they're successful in acquiring it, that they will use it.

I think he's right. I think, in fact, the situation with respect to Al Qaida to say that, you know, that was a big attack we had on 9/11, but it's not likely again, I just think that's dead wrong. I think the biggest strategic threat the United States faces today is the possibility of another 9/11 with a nuclear weapon or a biological agent of some kind, and I think Al Qaida is out there even as we meet trying to figure out how to do that.

KARL: And do you think that the Obama administration is taking enough serious steps to prevent that?

CHENEY: I think they need to do everything they can to prevent it. And if the mindset is it's not likely, then it's difficult to mobilize the resources and get people to give it the kind of priority that it deserves.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

KARL: Well, in fact, Vice President Biden says that he believes that the war in Iraq was not worth it. What do you say to that? I mean, given the resources that were drawn away from the -- what you could argue is the central front in Afghanistan, Pakistan, is he right about that?

CHENEY: No. I -- I believe very deeply in the proposition that what we did in Iraq was the right thing to do. It was hard to do. It took a long time. There were significant costs involved.

But we got rid of one of the worst dictators of the 20th century. We took down his government, a man who'd produced and used weapons of mass destruction, a man who'd started two different wars, a man who had a relationship with terror. We're going to have a democracy in Iraq today. We do today. They're going to have another free election this March.

This has been an enormous achievement from the standpoint of peace and stability in the Middle East and ending a threat to the United States. Now, as I say, Joe Biden doesn't believe that. Joe Biden wants to take credit -- I'm not sure for what -- since he opposed that policy pretty much from the outset.

KARL: I think what he wants to take credit for is taking resources out of Iraq, the fact...

CHENEY: That's being done in accordance with a timetable that we initiated, that we -- that we negotiated with -- with the Iraqis. I mean, that was our policy.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

more news:

"On Thursday, a Washington Post-ABC News poll had some bad news for Sarah Palin: 71 percent of the American public — including 52 percent of Republicans — don’t think the former Alaska governor is qualified to be president. This week, far-right radio host Michael Savage voiced some of these GOP complaints, saying that the Party would essentially be committing “suicide” if it made Palin its 2012 nominee:

If you want Obama for a second term, just make sure that Sarah Palin is the Republican nominee. … And I am telling you, that if they make that idiotic mistake of pushing her as their lead candidate, it’s over; Obama will get a second term, no matter how bad his presidency has been. That’s my opinion. It’s one man’s opinion. It doesn’t mean I don’t agree with her politically. It doesn’t mean I think she’s a bad person.

She’s not electable as president. She doesn’t have…the gravitas. He doesn’t either. That doesn’t mean — She’s not the right person. We need a businessman. We need someone with guts, preferably someone who’s served in the military. That means we have nobody. And please don’t tell me about Mr. Brown. God! Please! I warned you! Don’t Obama-size these guys.

It’s ironic that Savage criticizes Palin for not being a “businessman,” considering that that line is a frequent attack she throws at Democrats. In her recent speech to the National Tea Party convention, she cited her experience with Todd’s “commercial fishing business” as evidence that she knows how to “tighten our belts” and “cut back budgets” — unlike the politicians in Washington.

Savage also went after Palin’s arrangement with Fox News, saying that it was unethical and disingenuous:

You know what disturbs me? This is the part that worries me a little bit. She went to work for Fox News, and at the same time, she’s fundamentally running for the presidency. At the same time. I mean, the last I checked, you can’t do that. The last I checked is that you have to leave a media job in order to announce your candidacy. What is this? You can’t have it both ways. Either you’re running, or you’re not. Don’t play a game with the American people. We’re not stupid."

Posted by: drindl | February 15, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

I thought it was funny, at least, that Cheney said "OBiden".

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Back to the transcript (after agreeing with what they're doing in Afghanistan):

But I do see repeatedly examples that there are key members in the administration, like Eric Holder, for example, the attorney general, who still insists on thinking of terror attacks against the United States as criminal acts as opposed to acts of war, and that's a -- that's a huge distinction.

KARL: OK, before we get to Eric Holder, a couple more things from the vice president. He's been out responding preemptively to you. One thing he said we heard in the open, that he believes Iraq may ultimately prove to be one of the greatest achievements of the Obama administration.

CHENEY: Well, I -- I guess I shouldn't be surprised by my friend, Joe Biden. I'm glad he now believes Iraq is a success. Of course, Obiden and -- Obama and Biden campaigned from one end of the country to the other for two years criticizing our Iraq policy.

CHENEY: They opposed the surge that was absolutely crucial to our getting to the point we're at now with respect to Iraq. And for them to try to take credit for what's happened in Iraq strikes me as a little strange. I think if -- if they had had their way, if we'd followed the policies they'd pursued from the outset or advocated from the outset, Saddam Hussein would still be in power in Baghdad today.

So if they're going to take credit for it, fair enough, for what they've done while they're there, but it ought to go with a healthy dose of "Thank you, George Bush" up front and a recognition that some of their early recommendations, with respect to prosecuting that war, we're just dead wrong.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

something else cheney said -- hmm...

'On ABC’s This Week today, former Vice President Cheney threw his support behind President Obama’s efforts to change the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, saying that “things have changed significantly” since the discriminatory policy was first put in place. Cheney said that it’s “time to reconsider the policy”:

KARL: And you think that’s a good thing? I mean, is it time to allow gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military?

CHENEY: Well, I think the society has moved on. I think it’s partly a generational question. I say I’m reluctant to second-guess the military in this regard because they’re the ones who have got to make the judgment about how these policies affect the military capability of our, of our units. And that first requirement that you have to look at all the time is whether they’re still capable of achieving their mission and does the policy change i.e. putting gays in the force, affect their ability to perform their mission. When the chiefs come forward and say we think we can do it, then it strikes me that it’s time to rat it’s time to reconsider the policy.’

Posted by: drindl | February 15, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure the discussion between a vice-president and ex vice-president will make a whit of difference in the next election. Everyone (even Republicans) disliked Cheney when he was in office--could there be a more disagreeable human being on the planet?--and no one (even Democrats) takes Joe Biden seriously.

It was entertainment, but not much more.

Posted by: amaikovich | February 15, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse


71% of Americans currently think that Sarah Palin is not qualified to be President, but she still will be. Public opinion is very fickle. I'd much rather have truth on my side.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Jeff1, you are an even more optimistic Democrat than I am. I only wish Mrs. Murtha the best.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Why doesn't Cheney just stay in Hell where he belongs?

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | February 15, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Since no one is willing or able to do so, the only choice left is to go line-by-line and prove everything he said is the truth.

First, he is the former Vice President and his name is Richard Cheney, right? Second, it was a "good morning" for him at least. Third, he was asked about his allegation that Obama "is trying to pretend that we are not at war." This is how he responded:

CHENEY: Well, my reference to the notion that the president was trying to avoid treating this as a war was in relation to his initial response when we heard about the Christmas underwear bomber...

KARL: Right.

CHENEY: ... up in Detroit, when he went out and said this was the act of an isolated extremist. No, it wasn't. And we found out over time, obviously -- and he eventually changed his -- his assessment -- but that, in fact, this was an individual who'd been trained by Al Qaida, who'd been part of a larger conspiracy, and it was closer to being an act of war than it was the act of an isolated extremist.

It's the mindset that concerns me, John. I think it's -- it's very important to go back and keep in mind the distinction between handling these events as criminal acts, which was the way we did before 9/11, and then looking at 9/11 and saying, "This is not a criminal act," not when you destroy 16 acres of Manhattan, kill 3,000 Americans, blow a big hole in the Pentagon. That's an act of war.

KARL: Well -- well...

CHENEY: And what the administration was slow to do was to come to that -- that recognition that we are at war, not dealing with criminal acts. And as I say, my response there dealt specifically to the fact the president called it an isolated extremist. It was not.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

To those of you that think that having Cheney on the podium is a good idea. You should remember that 55% of Americans don't like him, and that number goes up if you ask how many people think he should lead the country. That means that no matter if Vice President Cheney is right or wrong, or if the majority of Americans agree with him, they will inherently have a negative viewpoint towards his opinions. On top of that most americans blame our current economical situation on Bush and everytime we see Cheney he subtly reminds Americans of that fact.

Posted by: AndyR3 | February 15, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Here's the full transcript of Cheney's appearance:

Cite even ONE lie.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

"Dick Cheney vs. Joe Biden (and why it's good for Democrats)"

Let's see, could it be because Dick Cheney is only attempting to protect his own derrière for the illegal acts he and "W" approved?

Bush knows he can't defend his actions, so that leaves Dick "as I recall" Cheney.

Posted by: helloisanyoneoutthere | February 15, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse


Please take down Bush-Cheney legacy extrajudicial programs of personal destruction -- DOMESTIC TERRORISM -- still being committed by YOUR administration against American citizens:


* Thousands of Americans slandered as "dissidents" or undesirables, targeted by Bush legacy program for debilitating, cell tower- based precision-targeted microwave assault, held hostage in their own homes to fed-supported vigilante "community policing" stalking units equipped with warrantless GPS devices, who vandalize and terrorize as local police look the other way.

* Electromagnetic frequency microwave/laser weapons -- a nationwide installation employing cell towers and satellites -- silently, invisibly induce weakness, exhaustion, mood changes, pain, head and body aches, physical and neurological impairment, strokes, aneurysms, cancer -- and many victims do not realize what is making them sick.

* Regional Homeland Security- administered "fusion centers" reportedly serve as command centers for covert electromagnetic radiation attacks, pervasive surveillance, financial sabotage of those identified as "dissidents," "trouble-makers" or slandered as threats to society.

* Use of microwave weaponry to torture and impair political opponents recently confirmed by deposed Honduras President Manuel Zelaya.

* Pleas for justice, to local police and FBI, go unanswered -- as do demands for a Department of Justice Civil Rights Division investigation and congressional hearings.

"These are crimes against humanity and the Constitution, being perpetrated under the cover of national security and 'safe streets' by multiple federal and local agencies and commands -- an American genocide hiding in plain sight, enabled by the naivete of those who think 'it can't happen here.'" -- Victor Livingston, former reporter for WTXF-TV Philadelphia, Phila. Bulletin, N.Y. Daily News, St. Petersburg Times; producer/host, MSG Network Sports Business Report; columnist,

See:/ (Journalism Groups -- REPORTING" section) OR

BUCKS COUNTY, PA- BASED MAGLOCLEN FUSION CENTER -- "Mid-Atlantic States Ground Zero of a Fed- and Politce-Protected American Gestapo"

OR (see "stories" list).

Posted by: scrivener50 | February 15, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

It's hard to see how Cheney hurts Republicans.. First he's not running.. so any Republican can feel free to disagree with him. Second Cheney can pick his arguements and saying terorists don't deserve Miranda rights or KSM shouldn't be tried in NYC or being aganist moving GITMO inmates to America.. you think that is unpopular with Americans? People may not like Cheney but it's not because of these issues. In fact it seems to me on these issues Cheney's arguement is winning..

Posted by: sovine08 | February 15, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

I picked up on having someone from Deeds campaign not being a positive indicator. There are potential pluses. Deeds ran a solid primary campaign as a centrist, even if much of it consisted of stepping back while McAuliffe and Moran went at it. I think he took he ran as incumbent (Warner III) and when he was too far behind, became a single issue candidate (a decades old thesis).

Lamont has bona fides with the left for taking on the Liebmonster. If he's competitive in the center, the primary should be a walk for him.

Deeds flaws as a candidate couldn't be remedied by any consultant. Props to Lamont for taking down an incumbent in his own primary.


Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 15, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Mark, I thought Perry was a darling of the Teaparty group so in your opinion how did Medina gain so much approval from that wing?

It sounds like that the Tea Party people want their people and their people only, and if they don't get that then they will stay home. Also Mark is there any whispering that Medina will run as an independent if she doesn't win the primary.

Posted by: AndyR3 | February 15, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Even "a flawed messenger" can be right. I'm surprised at the ad hominem personal attack (and mark_in_austin saying "thanks" for it). No one yesterday was able to quote a single fact that Cheney "lied" about. It seems that attacking the messenger is the only tactic left. BTW: pointing out an ad hominem personal attack, as the logical fallacy that it is, is not itself an ad hominem personal attack. I am ready, willing, and able to dispute any alleged "lie" but can only do so if your side actually makes the allegation more than "everything Cheney says is a lie."

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 15, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Cheney vs. Biden is not "good for Democrats", as the WP asserts.
First, Cheney is a measured and logical debater. Biden is too free with the truth and bound to put his foot in his mouth.
Second, public opinion is not, repeat, is not approving of the war on terror approach of the Obama administration.
Third, the only parts of the war on terror where Obama gets high rating are those that are following policy set in the Bush-Cheney years.

Posted by: JohnGalt9 | February 15, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse


First, Cheney is hardly a "measured and logical" debater. He throws out wild charges without any substantiation, and refuses to admit the most glaring weaknesses in his own arguments.

Second, the poll says that Americans support the Obama anti-terrorist policies. Just because you say no doesn't make it so.

Third, again you have no substantiation to claim that Americans only approve of the carried-over Bush/Cheney policies. Your entire argument is faith-based.

Posted by: maggots | February 15, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Happy Lundi Gras, Fixers. Enjoy your two days off.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers: I hesitate to predict the outcome of any election..."cautiously optimistic" is about as far as I'll usually venture.

I will say this about certainties: death, taxes and if Joyce Murtha runs, she'll be elected in May and reelected in November, should she choose to run.

Posted by: jeffersonian1 | February 15, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Exactly what is his motivation? There is an interesting poll on why he is doing this - the CHENEY TERRORISM POLL

Posted by: dhough2 | February 15, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Cheney vs. Biden is not "good for Democrats", as the WP asserts.
First, Cheney is a measured and logical debater. Biden is too free with the truth and bound to put his foot in his mouth.
Second, public opinion is not, repeat, is not approving of the war on terror approach of the Obama administration.
Third, the only parts of the war on terror where Obama gets high rating are those that are following policy set in the Bush-Cheney years.

And more important, Cheney also know quite well why the Obama administration is pushing for so many policies that the American people dislike.
He knows the thesis presented at the piece, "Democrat's Economic Assumption of Death". Find it at,

The real reason why Obama's policies are dangerous - Cheney knows.

Posted by: JohnGalt9 | February 15, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

sooner or later the states will run out of unemployment/welfare money and everyone will be left to the mercy of their masters...
a good time for some to finish what they started...

Posted by: DwightCollins | February 15, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the link, MM. Funny you should link to that piece. I was at Barnes and Noble and saw that New Yorker but I bought an overpriced sports mag instead. :)

Posted by: broadwayjoe | February 15, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

jeffersonian1, I acknowledged what a fine woman Mrs. Murtha is later in my post. The GOP will be running full-bore for this seat in MAY, and Mrs. Murtha would lose.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

broadwayjoe: Here's a link to an excellent article in New Yorker about the 9/11 trial. It's a very complex issue, and Jane Mayer does a nice job with the recent history of terrorist prosecution (terrorists arrested in this country have all been prosecuted in civilian courts)and the confict between political thinking and judicial thinking -- and why Obama and Holder sometimes look "weak."

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

margartetmeyers wrote:

"Mrs. Murtha is a nice, great-grandmotherly lady who would have name recognition going for her, but nothing else."

I don't know margaretmeyers so I will not impute motives to her for making such a foolishly incorrect statement.

I do know this about Joyce Murtha: she is a nice lady, even grandmotherly; and if she decides to run for Congress she will have her substantial intellect, her many friends and her heart as big as Pennsylvania going for her.

Posted by: jeffersonian1 | February 15, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Re 1. Excellent "Political News and Analysis" on the Obama/Cheney tug of war on national security. Yesterday was one of the few times on TV that Cheney was challenged on many of his factual assertions.

The analysis seems like evidence of a possible Fix unplugging from the Drudge/Broder Matrix....BTW, bought-out-but-not-yet-out Broder got totally slammed by fellow journalists (see, e.g., Frank Rich) for his Palin puff piece last week which incredibly ignored the Post's own poll showing 71% of Americans find Palin unfit to be POTUS.

Re 2. Isn't the big question whether KBH will keep her promise to resign her Senate seat now that she's significantly behind Perry.

Re 5. Shoutout to Lams. Nationwide there are a lot of Laminates still upset over how Lieberman gamed him out of the Senate seat in Connecticut--some states have "sore loser" rules preventing what Joe did to Lams.

Posted by: broadwayjoe | February 15, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

So for Texas Republicans, it's Governor Good Hair v. Kay Bailey v. a TrutherBirther?

If John Tower were alive, he'd be spinning in his grave. Heck, if you added the IQ's of all three of 'em, you'd still probably be well nigh of Tower's, even when he'd been drinking.

Perry won reelection 4 years ago with 39% of the vote in a 4 person race. The antipathy towards him from the business community in Dallas, Houston and most of the rest of Texas cannot be understated. If he's the nominee, say, "Hello, Governor White."

Posted by: jeffersonian1 | February 15, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

I read the link to the Pitt'g Gazette article. The local Democratic party is proposing Mrs. Murtha as a place-holder candidate to give the party time to gear up for November.

The Democrats have 3 months until the special election. Certainly they have enough time to pick the right candidate and get behind her/him. To think that the GOP is going to let the seat just drift to Mrs. Murtha is ridiculous. The GOP will be throwing a lot of money and attention behind their candidate now, whoever it is, and the Democrats do not have the luxury of thinking about a November candidate -- they must think about a May candidate.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Mrs. Murtha is a nice, great-grandmotherly lady who would have name recognition going for her, but nothing else. Talking about running her is a foolish proposition. It's like the talk about Victoria Reggie running. Seats are so hotly contested these days that you cannot just run a woman in her 70s whose qualification for office is she was married to a congressman for 55 years. No matter how smart she is, no matter how nvolved she was in her husband's work, no matter how much people in her CD smile when they see her she is NOT the right candidate.

Fix, seriously, I have to ask you if you have really heard that the candidacy is Joyce Murtha's if she wants it, because that does not sound right to me.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 15, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Every time Cheney speaks, he manages to make himself look nastier, lower and more spiteful. He even managed to slam Sarah Palin for talking about doing exactly what he did:

"Last week, during a 25-minute interview with Fox News’s Chris Wallace, former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin said that she thinks Obama could win reelection if he “played the war card” by starting a “war on Iran.” Today, during an interview on ABC’s This Week, none other than former Vice President Cheney slammed Palin — whom he reportedly had referred to as a “reckless choice” for vice president — saying that he doesn’t think a president “can make a judgement like that on the basis of politics“:

CHENEY: I don’t think a president can make a judgment like that on the basis of politics. The stakes are too high, the consequences too significant to be treating those as simple political calculations."

Posted by: drindl | February 15, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

#4 There are two others things working against Culver as well his disappearance from public view during very trying economic times and his budget proposal. The Des Monies Register reported last week that Culver has not been as visible to general public as the two previous governs (i.e. public appearances and interviews). He has fallen off the radar screen and he has shown little visible leadership especially during the budget cuts that were mandated late 2009 due to revenue shortfalls. The state auditor warned of potential shortfall due to overly optimistic projections. Recently, the state auditor has said the governor’s new budget proposal was illegal since the budget was not balance and said the governor’s proposed savings were not true (i.e., would not be as great as he estimated) and these were also back-up by another group. The governor has cried foul and said the state auditor is being hyper-partisan. The state auditor is a R (its an elected position), but he was harsh on the R when they controlled the state house. November is a long time away, but things are not looking good for Culver.

Posted by: sliowa1 | February 15, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

re: #5. Can Abbey do to Lamont what he did to Deeds, or was Deeds so much worse a candidate that he could not be Abbeyed?

re: #3. Does the widow Murtha have political or policy or personality skills, or is she another name ID slam of the American democratic process?

re: #2. The UT Poll has Medina closer - in a statistical dead heat with KBH. Now the question is will KBH actually resign her Senate seat. If she does, the Senate Special becomes an opportunity for John Sharp [D] according to the same UT Poll. That poll showed that the tea party is happening in the R house - D support is solid at 36% whether a TEA person is on the ballot or not, while R support drops from 43% to 29%, as I recall.

re: #1. I did not see either JB or former VP on Sunday and have only read their filtered remarks, so thanks for
armchair analysis, CC.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | February 15, 2010 8:01 AM | Report abuse


E.J. Dionne on the similarities between how the Republicans went after Clinton and how they are going after Obama.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 15, 2010 7:59 AM | Report abuse

this november is not so much about national security but about JOBS...
and obama has done nothing to create jobs...
and no businessperson trusts obama...
so expect employment in goverment, census to rise...
but those are temporary jobs...
and so far no real working agenda to create jobs appears in the future...
maybe the party not in power has more ideas...
nobody is going to care what biden or cheney has to say when they don't have work and they are about to be homeless and starving...

Posted by: DwightCollins | February 15, 2010 7:52 AM | Report abuse

This is what happens when a party lacks a true leader to act as the opposition. Cheney is a de facto member of the GOP's leadership and gets more attention for that. It is amazing the GOP is doing as well as it is when you have Cheney and Limbaugh and Palin speaking for the party.

Posted by: parkerfl1 | February 15, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

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