Big Bird Swallowed Mitt Romney’s Jewels
4 days ago – A protester dressed as “Big Bird” outside a Mitt Romney rally Friday in Abingdon. Enlarge Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images … Two days after the presidential debate in which Mitt Romney brought up the ….. While the veteran news anchor swallowed scathing reviews, Big Bird enjoyed a strong backing.
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Hugo Chavez, Oops, Mitt Romney and I@mysistereileen.com Big Bird Swallowed Mitt Romney’s Jewels
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4 days ago – Follow live coverage as Barack Obama and Mitt Romney face off in the first presidential debate in Denver, Colorado. … So what, Big Bird’s going to be made redundant? Nice. Oh and by …. Photograph: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images … In 2008 Romney ate little but skinned chicken and steamed vegetables on the campaign trail.
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2 hours ago – “I like Big Bird.” — GOP White House hopeful Mitt Romney on his plan to cut PBS funding. “I had five seconds before you interrupted me.
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John Heilemann breaks down the first debate between Mitt Romney and President Obama, where Romney …
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Romney Narrows Vote Gap After Historic Debate Win
By record-high margin, debate watchers say Romney did better
PRINCETON, NJ — Registered voters’ preferences for president are evenly split in the first three days of Gallup tracking since last Wednesday’s presidential debate. In the three days prior to the debate, Barack Obama had a five-percentage-point edge among registered voters.
Gallup typically reports voter presidential preferences in seven-day rolling averages; the latest such average as of Saturday interviewing shows Obama with an average three-point edge, 49% to 46%, among registered voters. This Sept. 30-Oct. 6 field period includes three days before the Oct. 3 debate, the night of the debate itself, and three days after the debate.Even on this basis, the race has become somewhat more competitive compared with before the first debate. Obama held four- to six-point leads in Gallup’s seven-day tracking results in the eight days prior to the Oct. 3 debate.
Should Mitt Romney’s momentum continue in the coming days, that gap in the seven-day rolling average would narrow further.
Romney Posts Historic Win in Debate
An Oct. 4-5 Gallup poll finds roughly two in three Americans reporting that they watched the Oct. 3 debate, similar to what Gallup measured for each of the three 2008 presidential debates. Those who viewed the debate overwhelmingly believe Romney did a better job than Obama, 72% to 20%. Republicans were nearly unanimous in judging Romney the winner. But even Democrats rated Romney as doing a better job than Obama, 49% to 39%.
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These assessments are based on interviewing conducted Thursday and Friday after the Wednesday night debate, and may reflect the impact of news stories and media commentary — which mostly declared Romney as the debate winner — as well as personal reactions to the debates as they unfolded.Gallup has assessed opinion on who did better in most past presidential debates; some of these polls were conducted the night of the debate with pre-recruited samples of debate watchers immediately after it concluded, and some were conducted with more general samples of Americans in the days that followed the debate. Across all of the various debate-reaction polls Gallup has conducted, Romney’s 52-point win is the largest Gallup has measured. The prior largest margin was 42 points for Bill Clinton over George H.W. Bush in the 1992 town hall debate.
Romney’s debate performance is also notable from the standpoint that U.S. debate watchers judged Obama the winner of all three 2008 debates with John McCain.
The first presidential debate went decidedly in Romney’s favor. The debate appears to have affected voters to some degree, given the narrowing of the race in the three days after the debate compared with the three days prior. Still, the impact was not so strong that it changed the race to the point where Romney emerged as the leader among registered voters. Rather, at least in the first three days of Gallup tracking after the debate, the race is tied.
However, the generally positive unemployment report released on Friday may serve to blunt some of Romney’s post-debate momentum.
In any case, with a month to go before Election Day, the outcome of the 2012 presidential election is still very much in doubt. That certainly raises the stakes for both candidates in the next two debates, Oct. 16 in Hempstead, N.Y., and Oct. 22 in Boca Raton, Fla.
Track every angle of the presidential race on Gallup.com’s Election 2012 page.
Sign up to get Election 2012 news stories from Gallup as soon as they are published.
For results based on the total sample of registered voters, one can say with 95% confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points.
Interviews are conducted with respondents on landline telephones and cellular phones, with interviews conducted in Spanish for respondents who are primarily Spanish-speaking. Each sample includes a minimum quota of 400 cell phone respondents and 600 landline respondents per 1,000 national adults, with additional minimum quotas among landline respondents by region. Landline telephone numbers are chosen at random among listed telephone numbers. Cell phone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods. Landline respondents are chosen at random within each household on the basis of which member had the most recent birthday.
Samples are weighted by gender, age, race, Hispanic ethnicity, education, region, adults in the household, and phone status (cell phone only/landline only/both, cell phone mostly, and having an unlisted landline number). Demographic weighting targets are based on the March 2011 Current Population Survey figures for the aged 18 and older non-institutionalized population living in U.S. telephone households. All reported margins of sampling error include the computed design effects for weighting and sample design.
In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.
For more details on Gallup’s polling methodology, visit www.gallup.com.
Romney Presses Consensus While Hitting Obama Foreign Policy
With the presidential race entering its final month, President Barack Obama’s campaign is trying to paint Republican nominee Mitt Romney as inept on the global stage and dishonest about his tax plans, while the challenger is turning his attacks to the incumbent’s foreign policy.
The president is seeking to regain footing after a lackluster debate performance as Romney tries to build momentum and make up ground in a race where he trails in the states most likely to decide the election.
Mitt Romney. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
Oct. 4 (Bloomberg) — U.S. President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney debate their tax plans, proposals to reduce the federal budget deficit, regulation of the financial industry and health-care policy. They met in Denver last night in the first of three presidential debates scheduled for this month. (Excerpts. Source: Bloomberg)
The campaign has entered a phase where the electoral map has narrowed to as few as eight states, with two debates remaining between Obama and Romney and the lone vice presidential debate between Joe Biden and Representative Paul Ryan set for Oct. 11. That reduces the margin for error in a contest that has been close for the last four months.
Romney today is in one of those states, Virginia — his fifth stop there in four weeks — to deliver a foreign affairs speech at 11:20 a.m. that will characterize Obama as a proponent of a policy that has allowed alliances to fray and tensions, particularly in the Middle East, to fester and threaten U.S. interests.
“If America does not lead, others will — others who do not share our interests and our values — and the world will grow darker, for our friends and for us,” Romney plans to say at the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, according to excerpts provided in advance by his campaign. “America’s security and the cause of freedom cannot afford four more years like the last four years.”
Romney’s effort to round out his national security credentials at the tail-end of a campaign that he has focused almost exclusively on the domestic economy and jobs comes as Obama’s camp charges that the former Massachusetts governor is obscuring his true positions on a range of issues, including health care and education.
This morning, the Obama campaign released a new advertisement portraying Romney as a bumbler on foreign policy, highlighting criticism he received for his conduct of a July trip to Europe and his haste to attack the administration after the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya in Benghazi on Sept. 11.
“If this is how he handles the world now, just think of what Mitt Romney might do as president,” the ad says.
In a memorandum circulated by Obama’s campaign with the new ad, foreign policy aides said Romney has criticized the president with “swagger and slogans,” without offering specifics about how he would handle ending the war in Afghanistan, dealing with Iran’s nuclear ambitions, or confronting unrest in the Middle East and North Africa.
Romney, wrote Michele Flournoy and Colin Kahl, has “raised more questions than answers about what he’d actually do as president.”
On tax cuts, too, the president’s re-election team is charging that Romney is trying to redefine his position late in the race — and resorted to math in a bid to press their case.
Campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki showed reporters traveling with Obama a handwritten note-card with scribbled numbers breaking down tax-cut calculations she said illustrated Romney would either have to raise taxes or swell the federal budget deficit by at least $1 trillion to finance his plan.
At the same time, Obama was working to recover from the presidential debate, poking fun at himself last night and signaling he would do better.
At a Los Angeles fundraising concert with 6,000 guests, Obama thanked Jon Bon Jovi, Katy Perry and others who “perform flawlessly night after night,” adding: “I can’t always say the same.”
Still, “The debate didn’t change the fundamentals of the electoral map, which is that it’s very difficult for Romney to get to 270” electoral votes needed to win, said Steve Elmendorf, a Democratic strategist and deputy campaign manager for John Kerry’s 2004 presidential bid. Obama, he said, remains stronger in big swing states like Ohio and with voting blocs such as Hispanics.
Can’t Turn Back
Obama is raising money and trying to energize Latino voters in California before traveling to Ohio tomorrow. Today, he’ll announce the establishment of a national monument to César Chávez, founder of the United Farm Workers.
The campaign said on Oct. 6 that the president and allied Democratic Party committees raised $181 million in September, the largest monthly total in his re-election effort. He was also buoyed by a report that the nation’s jobless rate was 7.8 percent in September, the lowest since Obama took office.
At the Los Angeles fundraising concert, Obama told supporters that manufacturing and home values are coming back and that “we’ve come too far to turn back now.” He said Romney’s policies represent “a relapse” to the era of President George W. Bush.
Romney, for his part, continued his tack to a more centrist message designed to appeal to independent voters and those who haven’t yet decided on their presidential candidate.
At a rally in Port St. Lucie, Florida, yesterday, he told voters he would “do everything in my power” to “have us pull together, to reach across the aisle to find good Democrats in the House and the Senate that care deeply about America just as I do.”
“I know they’re there. I know they’ll work together if they have leadership that will actually work and share credit and find ways to solve the great challenges,” Romney told about 12,000 people gathered outdoors to hear him.
Romney’s advisers said his speech today would lay out a bipartisan foreign-policy approach in the tradition of Presidents Harry S. Truman, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton during his second term.
Noting that his address would be at the alma mater of the late former Secretary of State George C. Marshall, Romney’s foreign policy adviser Alex Wong said: “Mitt Romney wants to renew that bipartisan vision” Marshall embodied.
Richard Williamson, who advised Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush and is a top Romney campaign foreign policy hand, said the Republican nominee would touch on Iraq, Iran, Libya and other challenges from abroad.
He said Romney would “put it in a broader perspective of the bipartisan approach to foreign policy and defense, from Harry Truman through Ronald Reagan and beyond, of peace through strength — America benefits and the world benefits when America provides bold leadership.”
Yet the speech will also promote a hawkish U.S. stance more often associated with George W. Bush, including a call for a more aggressive approach than Obama has taken to developments overseas and a larger defense budget to deter potential adversaries.
Romney plans to build on his call for a tougher line on Iran, including the imposition of stiffer sanctions than the president has imposed and the restoration of permanently stationed aircraft carrier task forces in the region.
“For the sake of peace, we must make clear to Iran through actions — not just words — that their nuclear pursuit will not be tolerated,” Romney is to say in his speech.
Obama’s campaign argues that Romney’s positions are outside the “mainstream” of foreign policy thinking. The “latest effort to reboot and reset the Romney foreign policy doesn’t change the fact that he’s repeatedly taken positions outside of the mainstream, and often to the right of even George W. Bush,” Flournoy and Kahl wrote in their memo.
Romney is walking a delicate political line with the address as he reaches out to swing voters, some of whom might be put off by memories of the younger Bush’s foreign policy and the war in Iraq that shaped his presidency.
Romney’s statements to date “have been more in the hawkish or neoconservative point of view, and the question I think in this speech is whether, like he did in the debate, he’s able to tack back to a more centrist, statesman, Republican- establishment stance,” said Republican strategist John Ullyot, a former spokesman for the Senate Armed Services Committee.
“He needs to criticize the administration, on the one hand, politically, but that pushes him in a direction where he’s more hawkish, and there’s a definite bitter aftertaste with most moderates with that approach.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Julie Hirschfeld Davis in Lexington, Virginia at 1890 or Jdavis159@bloomberg.net.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeanne Cummings at email@example.com.