Sunday, June 12, 2011

Gingrich Falls, Weiner Tweets, The Economy Sputters

Just to Reiterate, Newt Doesn't Have a Chance
Last week, I had him third in a very weak field of declared candidates, a distant third to the close-to-insurmountable Mitt Romney and the far behind but highly credible Tim Pawlenty. Apparently his closest advisers agree that things are not going particularly well for the one-time Speaker of the House in his bid to become the GOP nominee as 7 of his top guys all resigned on the same day this week. A few are presumed to be going to work for Tim Pawlenty, a few others are rumored to be in talks with Rick Perry if he decides to mount a run. Either way, those closest to the Gingrich campaign appear to want nothing to do with it. And why should they? In national polls, Gingrich is not only getting trounced by declared-candidate Romney, he's getting trounced by unannounced candidates Palin and Guliani, and even getting beat by sideshows Herman Cain and Ron Paul. Gingrich will likely not win a single nominating contest and should be gone after South Carolina, if he doesn't pitch in the towel sooner.

Anthony Weiner, The Sad Clown

Call it the curse of technology. Call it the oldest fault in men since time began. Either way, once well-respected Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) is now a sideshow. His sexting with at least 6 women over the past 3 years, including sending explicit photos has everybody and their brother calling for his resignation, including virtually all high profile Republicans and high profile Democrats such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-NY.)

What Weiner did was incredibly stupid. I always say that the internet is written in ink and you'd best not do anything on there that you wouldn't want your mother to see. Pictures of your erection certainly qualify there. Having said that, I'm not sure I'm on board with the Weiner resignation brigade.

It is not clear to me that Weiner has done anything even remotely illegal. It does not appear that he used government resources in his sexcapades. So at the end of the day, if all he did was send dirty photos, are his actions really so much worse than what the likes of Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and a whole host of other politicians did, who actually had sex with women while in office and stuck around? And how exactly does this effect if Weiner is a good congressman?

I guess we still have a strong puritan streak in this country.

Unemployment and Slow Growth - Not a Good Recipe for Obama
The President has to be fearful about the economic news of late. 1.8% GDP growth last quarter. Unemployment at a virtual flatline for the last several months right around the 9% line (9.1% last month, according to the BLS), nearly 2x what a healthy economy would be. Even the stock market, which had been the bright spot, has started to sputter with all the bad news.

If the election is going to come down to the economy, as I firmly believe it will, President Obama is going to need for things to be better a year from now than they are today, or he may find himself designing a Presidential library in Chicago.

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