Boom Goes the Dynamite

I always thought something like this would have been fun back when I worked in the Cannon House Office Building.

Ya know, Cannon vs. Longworth vs. Rayburn.

Longworth would get its butt kicked.

Bring on Sarah Palin

McCain has already taken the offensive on the energy debate, showing an interest in ‘Deep Sea Energy Exploration’ (nice one, Frank Luntz disciples) and increased nuclear energy. Now it seems he is setting up himself to not only make the right policy decision, but appease the conservative base at the same time.

From the Springfield News Leader:

For years, McCain has opposed drilling for oil in Alaska’s Arctic National Refuge Area (ANWR).

But during today’s town hall meeting, McCain said he’d be willing to reconsider that stance.

“I would be more than happy to examine it again,” McCain said.

Next step, tour the area with Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. As Governor, she has the moral authority to explain why ANWR should be opened up for drilling. Of course, it also is a pretty decent way to set her up to be the VP nominee. After all, who wouldn’t mind seeing this face at State funerals overseas?

Buried Nugget of Brilliance

While I may think my dear friend DJ Tablesauce comes off as slightly bitter that Obama has chosen to take advantage of his “gift” for fundraising (obviously not a real gift; as DJ pointed out he is reaping the benefits of an extremely emotional group of supporters), he makes an excellent point about the need for a real policy debate. The RATIONAL voters that are desperate for change want that change in the form of substance. They’re sick of bickering and partisan rhetoric. McCain could capitalize on this particular desire for change by touting his long list of policy successes and being concrete and concise about his plans for the future. His “green screen” speech was excellent, although sadly overshadowed by the backdrop, and he’ll do well to keep in that vein. While neither of these candidates has the management (read: gubernatorial) experience voters tend to like in their candidates, McCain has the edge in talking about government reform. He’s the only Republican candidate who had and should take advantage of the ability to bring fiscal conservatism back to column red.

I Really Hope Someone is Keeping a List Somewhere

Another day, another case of ‘what the hell, are you kidding me!?!’…

Today Senator Obama broke his pledge of public financing for his campaign and admitted that all that talk of NAFTA being “devastating” and “a big mistake,” was just silly campaign rhetoric that he didn’t mean.

This is hope and change? We were promised a new kind of politics. If anything, Obama has proven himself to be nothing more than more of the same, if not worse.

But the bigger question is whether it will have any effect on NovFive?

It seems that intensely committed Obama voters are broken into two categories…the Obamamaniacs and the Partisans. To those that see him as the political messiah, will highlighting these kinds of retractions and political gameplaying be effective? Likely not. And the partisans, well, they just want to beat Republicans so Obama could dropkick their own Mother and it likely wouldn’t change their vote.

So as the list of Obama’s hypocrisies continues to grow, will the leaners and swing voters be swayed? Perhaps, but these are the same voters that more often than not recognize that politicians say what they need to say when it’s politically expedient. Clearly, Republicans can’t rely on winning them over by simply denigrating Obama’s character.

As can be highlighted in today’s poll by Rasmussen, McCain must win this election on policy.

After hearing the views of both McCain and Obama, most Florida voters agreed with McCain–61% said it was likely that offshore drilling would reduce gas prices. Only 34% disagreed and said that offshore drilling would not accomplish that goal.

These are the kinds policy wedge issues that McCain must continue to hammer on if he has any chance of winning. Obama has already staked his ground. No offshore drilling. No nuclear power. The candidate of change? Hmmm.

Anybody there?

Republicans and Democrats in Harmony! Senators and Representatives holding hands and skipping through a meadow! These mortal enemies have come together against a common foe: dead bodies in federal buildings. They also agree on the need to keep drug users out of federal daycare centers! Who knew it would be so easy to foster accord on the Hill.

A House subcommittee held a hearing today to express their horror at a GAO report which showed that gross incompetence and mismanagement at the Federal Protective Service was leaving high-security federal buildings vulnerable to terrorist attack. A Senate subcommittee will hold a nearly identical hearing tomorrow.

They have a point. Given that elements of the two most devastating terrorist attacks on U.S. soil — Sept. 11 and the Oklahoma City bombing — were aimed at federal buildings, this isn’t an abstract risk, it’s a reality. If you can’t make security at federal buildings a funding priority, posturing on “national security” is a just that … posturing.

Todays Tidbits

Lowlights On the Hill:

Tomorrow, reps will vote on whether to give federal employees “equal” maternity leave as private workers, increasing the 12 unpaid week benefit to 8 weeks paid / 4 weeks unpaid (but can then use vacation days) for any federal employee that births a child, adopts a child, or gets a foster child. 8% of private employees get 8 weeks paid leave for only giving birth. What are you going to name your foster kid? (H.R. 5781)

Also, a vote to outlaw ‘abuse’ at residential programs for troubled teens. Nowadays, if you are bad, you might be forced to miss dinner. Not anymore. Wonder what Mrs. Hannigan or any military school principle would say about this one. (H.R. 5876)


Check out this little discussed moment of history. Democrats filibustered the 1964 Civil Rights Act for 57 hours! Amazing that folks don’t bring that up EVER.

We HOPE you CHANGE your outfit

In our campaign experience, there are few things more important to advance work than framing the shot. In other words, making sure the media that has come to your event gets the exact shot that you want shown on the evening news. So, we were particularly amused when we came upon this tidbit.

Two Muslim women at Barack Obama’s rally in Detroit on Monday were barred from sitting behind the podium by campaign volunteers seeking to prevent the women’s headscarves from appearing in photographs or on television with the candidate. The campaign has apologized to the women, both Obama supporters who said they felt betrayed by their treatment at the rally.

“This is of course not the policy of the campaign. It is offensive and counter to Obama’s commitment to bring Americans together and simply not the kind of campaign we run,” said Obama spokesman Bill Burton. “We sincerely apologize for the behavior of these volunteers.”

Now, how exactly can something like this happen? Well first off, you need to understand who exactly it is that is in charge of managing backdrops for campaign rallies like this one. More often than not, advance personnel are the most experienced of campaign volunteers and managed by employees of the campaign whose sole responsibility is advance for campaign events. That means one thing….these people should know better. If you’re looking for a better shot, you can move and adjust people…but kicking them out? No. Sorry. You only boot someone if they smell like rotten cheese or are dressed like the unabomber.

Building a human backdrop to a political candidate, a set of faces to appear on television and in photographs, is always a delicate exercise in demographics and political correctness. Advance staffers typically pick supporters out of a crowd to reflect the candidate’s message.

In this particular case, the type of event means you’re not worried placing VIPs in the shot, though some certainly will want to be visible. Instead, you simply are directing the crowd to the available seats, passing out signs to shake and flags to wave. Why do I mention this? Because it highlights the particular effort Obama’s staff went to filter out those with Muslim headdress. Does this mean it’s official campaign policy? Of course not. Instead, it’s likely the fruit of discussions among advance staff about how best to frame the shot.

But at the end of the day, these people are key members of the campaign and influenced by the culture throughout it. Clearly, that culture has enabled the campaign staff to feel obligated to take such ridiculous actions on their own accord.

Finally, what outrage would we hear from the media if this were done at a McCain rally?


Welcome to Third Base Politics

Yep. The first post.

I guess I’ll provide you an understanding of what we’ll be doing here at 3BP….

Our goal is to provide yet another perspective in the immeasurable world of opinion that is American politics. Fortunately, there is more than enough material to analyze, interpret and mock incessantly.

We’ll try to update once a day…and who knows….maybe more.

Keep an eye out.