There's no battleground state that likes Mitt Romney as much as Florida does, according to a new NBC News-Wall Street Journal-Marist poll out this morning.(1)
City Councilman Charles Barron, a former Black Panther, defended President Obama against charges that a 2007 speech, which was re-aired by Fox News tonight, was racially divisive.
"I don't think it's race baiting to say the people of New Orleans were not helped after Katrina," Barron said when reached on his cell phone Tuesday night.
The speech to Hampton University in June of 2007 wasn't exactly a secret, since Obama was a presidential candidate at the time, and the event was covered by Fox News and other outlets. But a full 40-minute video of the event was recycled today in a primetime apperance by Daily Caller editor Tucker Carlson on Sean Hannity's show on Fox News, after its appearance had been teased on conservative clearinghouse the Drudge Report. Hannity led with a clip of the president acknowledging his former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and described the video as a "bombshell."
Barron called the video's release, and its characterization, "a desperate attempt to save a dying Mitt Romney campaign."(4)
After filing suit against Bear Stearns and its parent company J.P. Morgan, alleging the company's quality control practices for safeguarding mortgage-backed securities were "a sham," Attorney General Eric Schneiderman hinted at the prospect of more mortgage-related suits in a conference call this afternoon.
"My expectation is that there will be more cases to come, involving other institutions, and that we'll continue to work with our federal partners to conduct an efficient, effective investigation," Schneiderman told reporters.
One of the ways Mitt Romney is hoping to blunt the president's momentum is to focus on foreign policy more over the coming weeks. He has a big foreign policy speech planned for next week, and there's talk of an aggressive "Jimmy Carter Strategy" to paint him as a weak leader. Outside groups have already begun running ads about Obama's handling of the situation in Libya.
But this morning's poll shows Romney is starting with a significant disadvantage on the issue.
Senator Chuck Schumer thinks the problems Mitt Romney is having in the polls are a product of his inability or unwillingness to move to the middle for the general election, with the selection of Paul Ryan providing the "turning point" of the campaign.
After Schumer's speech to the New York Building Congress on Friday morning, in which he called for a bipartisan approach to funding transportation infrastructure, I asked Schumer how a Romney presidency would affect the city, given Romney's publicly stated desire to do away with federal funding for Amtrak.
"Mitt Romney has embraced the hard right philosophy and that's the reason his campaign is having the trouble it is—with everybody," Schumer said.
A week after she debuted an upstate ad about manufacturing, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is out with a new television ad, running in the New York City market, in which she talks about her efforts to bring transparency to Washingotn.
Gillibrand has made transparency a theme of her time in the Senate, and the positive spot says she "took on my own party to end automatic congressional pay raises," and mentions her publicly available schedules and tax returns, and her efforts to help pass the STOCK Act to prevent insider trading in Congress.
She leads her Republican challenger, attorney Wendy Long, by a wide margin, which has afforded Gillibrand the opportunity to run exclusively soft focus, highly positive spots intended to boost her name recognition and approval ratings.
On Thursday afternoon, Nancy Pelosi and Al Gore will be the featured guests at a lunch to benefit the New York efforts of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
The luncheon benefits "The Committee for Battleground NY Victory Fund," and benefits four incumbent Democrats facing tough races, along with four challengers who are part of the DCCC's "Red to Blue" program, which tries to unseat vulnerable Republican members.
The presence of Pelosi and Gore reflects the outsize importance New York plays in House races this fall, after the redrawing of the state's congressional lines was ceded to a federal court earlier this year.
Despite the Obama campaign's best efforts to manage expectations for the first presidential debate on Wednesday night, 55 percent of voters expect the president to win the debate, with just 31 percent predicting a victory for Romney, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll released this morning.
On Sunday morning, while most presidential-campaign surrogates on both sides were lowering expectations for their candidates' debate performances on Wednesday night, Gov. Chris Christie did the opposite.
Governor Andrew Cuomo will be the special guest at an Artists for Obama fund-raiser on October 3 at the Lever House in Manhattan.
The event is hosted by Chuck Close, Milly and Arne Glimcher, and Dorothy Lichtenstein, the widow of pop artist Roy Lichtenstein.
Tickets start at $250 to attend the event, and go up to $50,000, which includes a large portrait of Obama by Close.
Cuomo has attended a couple of fund-raisers for the president over the past year, but this is the first time he's been listed as a special guest attraction.
Bob Abrams waited until Cory Booker had left the room on Tuesday morning to start talking up the many possibilities for New Jersey's most famous mayor.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg is meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, at Gracie Mansion this afternoon.
OPHTHPAC, the political action committee for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, is up with a new television ad in support of Rep. Nan Hayworth.
Hayworth, who is running a tough race for re-election in a swing district targeted by Democrats, is a licensed ophthalmologist who maintained a practice in the Hudson Valley before she was elected to Congress in 2010.
The ad doesn't specifically mention her ophthalmology credentials, but does emphasize her physician-like care for her constituents.
"I am violating all protocol today," Bill Clinton told a big crowd packed into the Sheraton ballroom in Midtown for his annual Clinton Global Initiative summit this afternoon. "Because if you're an American citizen, and you introduce the president, you're supposed to say, 'The President of the United States,' and shut up. That's it."(1)
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is up with her first television ad of the campaign, a spot designed for upstate audiences that emphasizes her commitment to American manufacturing.
The 30-second ad features Gillibrand walking through a manufacturing plant, talking about why it's important, and how she voted against some tax breaks for companies that outsourced jobs.
Her Republican opponent, Manhattan attorney Wendy Long, has made a push upstate too, concentrating her efforts on the conservative voters who populate the region, and helped her defeat sitting congressman Bob Turner in the June primary.
But Gillibrand has always been relatively popular upstate.