March 2012

Mar 22, 2012

Romney’s Day to Relish Is Marred by Aide’s Gaffe

By Jeff Zeleny and Jim Rutenberg, New York Times

Mitt Romney sought to use the coveted endorsement of Jeb Bush on Wednesday to amplify his call for Republicans to rally behind his candidacy and get on with the mission of ousting President Obama.
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Above the Rules

By John Dickerson, Slate

Now let us talk of Republican National Committee rule No. 40(b). Must we? I'm afraid we must, my friend, they’re printing stories in the press. Some believe it to be a hurdle to Newt Gingrich's march to the nomination. You mean the one where he keeps losing but at the Republican Convention is held aloft by 1,144 delegates as the one true nominee? The very same, my friend.
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Obama Plays the Long Game on Gas Prices

By Major Garrett, National Journal

For the White House, the current gas prices wars are not about today's poll numbers. That's a losing proposition and top officials know it. When you're the "in" party when gas prices rise, you suffer. President Bush did in 2008 and so, by extension, did John McCain. When you're the "out" party, you pounce. That's what Sen. Barack Obama did before the Indiana primary against Hillary Clinton in 2008.
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President Obama talks about energy in Maljamar, NM (CNN)

Mar 21, 2012

Romney Scores Big Win over Santorum in Illinois

By Sam Youngman, Reuters

Republican Mitt Romney cruised to an easy victory over top rival Rick Santorum in Illinois on Tuesday, moving him one step closer to clinching the party's volatile battle for the presidential nomination. Romney's comfortable win gave him a fresh burst of momentum in the White House campaign and new ammunition for his argument that it is time for Republicans to rally around his campaign and end an increasingly bitter nominating battle.
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Santorum’s Blunt Talk is Proving Troublesome

By Karen Tumulty and Nia-Malika Henderson, Washington Post

In getting this far, Rick Santorum has achieved what no one — with the possible exception of himself — would have thought was possible four months ago. But the very qualities that made him a contender are turning into problems, as he is more frequently being tripped up by saying what is on his mind and by sometimes-errant tactical instincts.
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Afghan War Hearing Passes Fireworks-Free

By Yochi J. Dreazen, National Journal

A U.S. soldier stands accused of massacring 16 Afghan civilians, the worst such attack in either Iraq or Afghanistan. Afghan President Hamid Karzai recently responded by describing the U.S. as a "demon" and demanding a faster U.S. withdrawal. Here at home, domestic support for the war has plunged to new lows, with Republicans as well as Democrats telling pollsters that the conflict is not worth its cost and that American troops should come home sooner than is currently planned.
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Mitt Romney Cleans up in Illinois

By John Dickerson, Slate

Illinois primary day was a laundry day for Mitt Romney. He washed his shirt in the sink and then took Rick Santorum to the cleaners. The former Massachusetts governor beat his closest rival handily, 47 percent to 35 percent. It was the first no-caveat, everyone-is-watching, takes-place-in-a-location-you've-heard-of contest that Romney has dominated since his victory in Florida two months ago.
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Democrats Attack Ryan Budget Plan, Again

By Laura Meckler, Wall Street Journal

A year ago, Democrats made political mincemeat of Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget plan, attacking it for its cuts in Medicare and other programs. They’re hoping Mr. Ryan’s new plan will provide similar political damage. In a statement Tuesday, White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said the plan “once again fails the test of balance, fairness and shared responsibility.”
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House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), center, introduces the GOP budget with Republican House Members (CNN)

Mar 20, 2012

Romney Aims for Illinois Win to Widen Republican Lead

By Sam Youngman, Reuters

Front-runner Mitt Romney appears poised to widen his lead in the Republican presidential race with a victory on Tuesday in Illinois, where polls show he has a comfortable edge over top rival Rick Santorum. Romney hopes a solid win in Illinois will give him a fresh burst of momentum in the volatile White House campaign and add urgency to calls for Republicans to rally around the former Massachusetts governor and end an increasingly bitter nominating battle.
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Mitt Romney in Peoria, IL (CNN)

Obama Heading West to Counter His Energy Critics

By Alexis Simendinger, RealClearPolitics

President Obama this week will wend his way through Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Ohio to explain why he has little power to lower gasoline prices, and why he has a long-term energy strategy that he believes can reduce the effects of pump price fluctuations in the long term. When would the president's strategy pay off? The benefits of Obama's approach are ongoing, the White House said Monday, even if gasoline prices keep rising because of global market activity out of the president’s control.
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GOP Candidates Face Illinois Primary Today

With John Harwood, CNBC

CNBC's John Harwood has the story on whether there will be a brokered Republican convention.

Watch Video on CNBC

On Primary’s Eve, Romney Cuts to General Election

By Jeff Zeleny and Jim Rutenberg, New York Times

Republican voters have yet to give Mitt Romney a green light to begin a formal campaign against President Obama, so Mr. Romney paid a visit to the president’s old neighborhood here on Monday for yet another audition to show he is tough enough to win the general election.
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