Obama Closes Office Tasked with Closing Gitmo

Gitmo

Guantanamo Bay isn’t going to be closed down any time soon. The 2008 campaign promise that played a major role in helping the President win his first election is officially going to remain unfulfilled as the office created to close the military detention center has itself been shut down. The administration reassigned Daniel Fried, the special envoy for closing the prison. He will not be replaced.

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Jesse Jackson Jr’s Replacement May Be a Friend of the NRA

Debbie Halvorson

It’s hard to imagine that a white female former congresswoman who received an A-rating from the NRA could win the seat vacated by Jesse Jackson Jr in a Chicagoland district where 54% of the voters are Africa-American, but that appears very possible as with less than a month before the February 26th special election.

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US, China Conduct Simultaneous Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense Tests

Ballistic Missile

It’s surely just a coincidence, but that doesn’t make it any less interesting that both the United States and China conducted anti-ballistic missile defense tests on Sunday. Both were reported as successful.

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Dear Hillary: It Makes a Difference

Clinton What Difference Does it Make

It makes a huge difference, Madam.

When Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson attempted to find out why the American people were misled about the cause of the Benghazi attacks and why our response was nil at the time that it was happening, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton went on the defensive. You know when someone starts a statement with the words, “With all respect…” that there will be no respect given in the words to follow. Clinton showed disrespect to the Senator, the congress, the American people, and most importantly the families of the victims when she launched into her tirade.

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There are More Unemployed Americans than there are People in Australia

Unemployment

The country is facing the greatest economic challenge of its history. It isn’t just the continuously-punted fiscal cliff that keeps getting kicked down the road that has economists concerned. It’s the terrible state of unemployment in the country and the programs that are pushing us towards low-end, part-time employment as a “solution”. A thriving America can not be sustained on limited job opportunities.

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Obama vs Romney: The Tale of the Twitter Tape

Twitter Logo

Depending on who you ask, social media may play a huge role in the outcome of the presidential election or it may be an insignificant venue through which supporters declare their allegiance but do not get swayed by others. Mitt Romney is hoping it’s the latter based upon how he fairs on Twitter versus President Obama.

Then again, the study below by Mashable and PeekAnalytics does give some hope to the GOP hopeful. On the surface, the numbers are tremendously on the President’s side, but digging deeper reveals that Romney isn’t as bad off as some may think.

Here’s the graphic.

Obama vs Romney Twitter

(Hat Tip: Chicago Toyota)

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Google and the Candidates: How Super Tuesday Looked through the Search Giant’s Eyes

Google Logo LargeIt’s been well known that search engines and social media sites have the ability to help predict the outcome of national and world events. A deep look into the trends can help to shed light on what will soon come to pass. It’s far from exact but has been shown to be fairly accurate.

The results of the GOP primaries on Super Tuesday were accurately predicted by Google in most cases. By tracking the buzz, the results matched pretty well. Despite Mitt Romney “winning” Super Tuesday in delegate count, it’s clear that he was not given a full victory do to losses in places that a front runner should be winning at this stage in the process.

Rick Santorum, who had the most searches done on Google in the days leading up to Super Tuesday, was considered by many to be the real winner by not losing as much as he could have. It’s semantics, but the data visualization below that Google did is still compelling.

Click to enlarge.

Google and the GOP

Cartoon: Cheaper Gas Choices

This cartoon by the Washington Examiner really brings to light the attitude circulating through Washington DC right now as we seem to have our priorities a little misplaced.

Cheaper Gas Choices

Mathematically, Santorum Has Easier Road to Beat Obama than Romney

Barack Obama

Something has been really weird about this GOP primary season. It’s easy to understand why the Republican Establishment has supported Mitt Romney from the start based upon their support of previous moderates like John McCain and Bob Dole. What hasn’t been as clear is why the Obama campaign team has been working on helping Romney get the nomination through their actions (or lack of actions in many cases).

Conventional wisdom would say that it would serve the Obama campaign to prolong the GOP primary season for as long as possible, allowing the candidates to soften up each other through attacks and drain the money that will eventually be pointed at Obama. The fact that they have not started to attack frontrunner Romney in full force in hopes of casting doubts on his abilities and extending the race has been viewed as a mistake by many analysts.

It has not been a mistake. They simply noticed something that the Republican Establishment, mainstream media, and GOP voters hadn’t: Rick Santorum is more popular than Romney in swing states.

Despite public perception, the winner of the presidential election is determined by a relatively-small number of states. Fourteen states are solidly Democrat and have voted such in nearly every election since 1988. Nineteen states are solidly Republican, with Indiana being the only one that Obama was able to pull in 2008. The other 17 states are up for grabs.

Among those are Pennsylvania, Ohio, Colorado, Iowa, and Minnesota. Assuming that Santorum wins Ohio and Pennsylvania, these are states that Obama won in 2008 that would more likely swing to Santorum (Pennsylvania is guaranteed) than they would to Romney. Romney brings New Mexico, Nevada, and Michigan.

Romney’s victory in Florida is the toss up, but Marco Rubio as the Vice President for either candidate will help win that state regardless of whether it’s Romney or Santorum. If anything, Romney might make the mistake of bringing on a more conservative VP, giving Florida to the Democrats again.

If Santorum wins the Republican states and pulls the five above plus Florida, he would only need to win the right-leaning Indiana (which Obama won in 2008) OR one of the three other swing states that George W. Bush won in 2004 (Virginia, North Carolina, or Nevada) to defeat Obama in November. Romney’s road to the White House would require more unlikely victories to become a reality.

In that scenario for Santorum, it would very likely be another case as with George W. Bush where he would receive fewer votes overall but would win the right states to take the presidency.

Mathematically speaking, Santorum is the tougher candidate against Obama. The Republican Establishment has failed once again at basic math.

The Broken System: Santorum Leads Nationally But Everything Hinges On Michigan

Santorum Over Romney

It’s an antiquated system designed before the internet and with the intention of allowing voters and delegates to see their nominees in person. It harkens to a day when trains crossed from sea to sea with candidates waving at people who were lining up just for a glimpse. Those days are behind us. The system should be as well.

The grind of the nomination process (and the state-based election system altogether) no longer make sense. Currently, Rick Santorum leads all GOP nominees in national polls, but most of those voters will not have a voice. If Michigan goes to Romney, this race has 10 days left. For people living in states who have primaries after Super Tuesday on March 6th, your votes won’t make a difference.

A win for Romney will give him the momentum he needs to wrap up the nomination. The fight will continue for a long time, possibly up to the convention, but everyone other than the hardcore supporters of each remaining candidate will lose interest.

How can someone better-represent a party’s choice but not have a chance of reaching the majority of the voters? Why is a vote in Michigan more powerful than a vote in Utah, a state that has more delegates but who has very little chance to make an impact with their primary in late June?

According to the most recent USA Today poll, Santorum is ahead of President Obama head-to-head by 3% while Romney is tied with the President. As you can see in the graphic above, Santorum also beats Romney in a nationwide poll. The fact that we still have this ludicrous system is asinine.

We have television. We have the internet. We have ways to see each candidate and have them speak to the people in each state. The primary system should be consolidated to one that makes more sense in the digital age. Standard conservative thinking is to allow the states to do what they feel like doing to select delegates, but for once we’re deviating from the norm. Regardless of who wins today, the fact that voters in Michigan are more empowered than voters in other states is absolute proof of a broken system.