Note to politicos: Start musing aloud about legitimate rape and watch your poll numbers sink.
That seems to be the case in Missouri, where incumbent Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill has opened up a 10 point lead over her challenger, Congressman Todd Akin in the latest Rasmussen poll. Mr. Akin, of course, burst onto the political scene earlier this week when, during an otherwise routine local TV interview, he stated his objection to abortion even in cases of rape.
“It seems to me, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare,” Mr. Akin said about the chances of getting pregnant due to rape. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work or something: I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be of the rapist, and not attacking the child.” Continue reading “McCaskill Opens Up Big Lead Over Todd Akin In Latest Poll”
President Barack Obama stood on the stage at Alice Tully Hall tonight dressed in a dark black suit with a dark tie and looking very much like a performer—a conductor, perhaps, of a swing band.
The seats in the audience were empty, but onstage with Mr. Obama were about 120 guests seated at a dozen or so round tables, each paying $20,000 for the privilege.
The event was a fundraiser with NBA stars, and when he spoke, Mr. Obama joked that usually at these kinds of events he was the center of attention, but at this one most people there hoped to get an autograph with some of the NBA greats in attendance, including Patrick Ewing, Bill Bradley, Walt Frazier and the host of the evening, Michael Jordan. Continue reading “In Front of NBA Greats, Obama Teases Todd Akin”
The gigantic municipal labor union DC37 came out with its endorsements today, and the list contains a few surprises.
As already noted here, the 121,000-member union endorsed Olanike Alabi in her race against Walter Mosley, who is backed by the man they are vying to replace, Hakeem Jeffries. And the gr0up is also backing Guillermo Linares, who is trying to oust incumbent Adriano Espaillat. And in Queens, the union went with Jerry Iannece, who is running to replace Rory Lancman, and Ron Kim, who is running to replace Grace Meng. Otherwise, the union sticks with incumbents, even some with spotty records like Naomi Rivera and William Boyland. Continue reading “DC37 Endorsements Out”
Eliot Spitzer hosted former Missouri State Senator Jeff Smith on his Current TV show last night to talk about what it would take to get Todd Akin to give up his Senate campaign.
“I sympathize with him when he critiques the self-importance of the party leadership that thinks they can either anoint candidates or in this case force them out, which is fundamentally anti-democratic in most instances,” Mr. Spitzer said, adding, “He is speaking to the sense that those who believe they are more important than they really are should not dictate the terms of democracy, and his own political career speaks to that, so he may be saying the more you push me, the more I am going to say no.” Continue reading “Eliot Spitzer Muses on What It Will Take to Get Todd Akin to Quit [Video]”
Congressional candidate Rob Zerban and his staff had decided to take a break from the grueling campaign season one Friday night earlier this month and check out The Campaign, the Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis comedy about a Congressional race in North Carolina.
Once the movie was over, Mr. Zerban and his aides started checking their BlackBerrys and found out their own Congressional campaign was about to get a lot more interesting.
That’s because the man Mr. Zerban had been running hard against for the past 16 months in Wisconsin’s First Congressional District, incumbent Paul Ryan, had been selected by Mitt Romney to be his running mate, and quickly announced that he would be running for both offices simultaneously.
“I was a little stunned,” said Mr. Zerban by phone today. “I couldn’t believe it. As much as I though this is what he wanted, I couldn’t believe they would go so far and nominate such an extreme ticket, where they would be highlighting what Republicans really stand for.” Continue reading “Meet the Man Trying to Get Paul Ryan Out of Politics, for Good”
Debra Cooper, a State committeewoman on the Upper West Side, will file to run for the City Council seat later this afternoon.
“I’m ready to take the next step in serving the Upper West Side,” said Ms. Cooper. “I am ready to be a strong voice on the City Council, listening to the concerns and fighting for the values, needs and priorities of the Upper West Side.”
The seat is currently held by Gale Brewer, who will be termed out next year. Currently, four other candidates have been running for the seat– Helen Rosenthal, Marc Landis, Mel Wymore and Ken Biberaj, although Ms. Cooper’s campaign noted that there is a history there of electing progressive women. Prior to Ms. Brewer, the seat was held by Ronnie Eldridge and Ruth Messinger. Continue reading “New Candidate Emerges For Upper West Side Council Seat”
Former Mayor Ed Koch sent out one of his semi-regular commentaries today and it was something of a unusual one for the former New York City mayor.
In it, he defended Vladimir Putin for sending three members of the radical art collective Pussy Riot to prison for staging a musical demonstration in a Russian Orthodox Cathedral, and compared it with his own actions against the AIDS activist group ACT-UP in the 1980’s.
Writes Mr. Koch:
The Western cultural elite is rallying to the defense of the disrupters in the cathedral. Some approve of the verbal attack on Putin. Others support the denunciation of the Russian Orthodox church leadership and the church disruption because of the church leadership support of Putin. All cited characterize the issue as one of free speech. I do not.
I would assume that many Pussy Riot supporters would take a different position, and rightly so, if here in the U.S. a black church were invaded and three men or women engaged in comparable conduct insulting holy places within the church and the pastor. I recall when I was Mayor in 1989 and the AIDS activist group Act Up, unjustifiably angry with John Cardinal O’Connor, invaded St. Patrick’s Cathedral and interrupted the Mass, throwing the Communion wafers – which for Catholics are the actual Body of Christ – to the floor. Some were arrested. So far as I can recall, no one was punished. I think the decision of the Russian court to punish a hate crime was just and to be applauded, rather than condemned and ridiculed. One can argue concerning the degree of punishment, whether fines rather than jail time should have been imposed, but that is a function of the Russian penalty procedures. Continue reading “Ed Koch Defends The Arrest of Pussy Riot, Compares Them To AIDS Activists of the 80’s”