TPM News

Vanity Fair columnist James Wolcott has an interesting take on Gov. Rick Perry’s “oops” moment.

“You know what I bet Perry is feeling right now? Relief. It’s over, he has to know it, and future knots of tension are dissolving,“ he wrote.

Apparently Rick Perry is changing up his schedule as he shifts into damage control mode. The latest move is that he’ll be trying to laugh it all off on Letterman tonight. An NBC News reporter tweets that it’s now confirmed that Perry is diverting for NY tonight.

Erick Erickson pleaded with Herman Cain in a RedState post on Thursday morning. After stating that he “still believes” that the candidate can both win the GOP nomination and beat President Obama, Erickson turned to the real issues at hand.

“You said you would surround yourself with the best people—the competent people to help you,” Erickson said. Yet, look at the list of recent gaffes by Cain staffers: Block blaming the Perry campaign and retracting his statement, Block lying about verifying the son of a Cain accuser was a Politico reporter, and J.D. Gordon’s disastrous performance on Geraldo’s show.

“Herman, you said you’d surround yourself with the best people and you’ve surrounded yourself with Class A failures,” Erickson writes. “The problems you are facing are problems of campaign staffing. You’ve failed to live up to your own standard of hiring the best people.”

His solution? Cain must fire his staff and “reboot for victory.”

After posting huge turnout numbers in 2008, Democrats are going to have a tough time bringing back the base in 2012. You hear it in the streets, you see it in the polls. That's the conventional wisdom at least.

But among Obama campaign staff, it's an article of faith that talk of a "base problem" is a load of bunk. Touring campaign headquarters in Chicago last month, aides uniformly dismissed the notion there would be any issue bringing core Democrats back into the fold. A "Washington narrative," as one person described it to TPM.

Read More →

Members of the deficit Super Committee are still meeting, still talking, but for all intents and purposes, negotiations have stalled. The underlying difficulty remains the GOP's unwillingness to agree to raise significant new tax revenue, enough to match Democrats' willingness to cut spending on popular programs like Medicare and Social Security. But with days ticking down quickly until the panel's November 23 deadline, each party is claiming that the ball is in the other's court.

One of the most recent offers, the details of which were leaked to the press earlier this week, came from Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA). It's been characterized by Republicans as a plan that would raise $300 billion in new revenue, Republicans say, by limiting certain tax preferences. But it also would require reducing, and making permanent, Bush-era tax rates for high income earners -- a requirement Democrats oppose. Additionally, the overall revenue figure may be the product of a controversial "dynamic" model, which assumes that the tax changes will lead to economic growth.

Democrats have applauded Republicans for finally acknowledging that higher net tax revenues need to be part of the committee's overall mix. But they've also rejected the offer as not serious, and wildly dismissive of Dem demands that the panel reduce deficits nearly as much by rolling back spending on safety net programs as by requiring wealthier Americans to pay higher taxes.

Read More →