Archive for September, 2012

A Twitter feud over Karen Handel’s new book

On Twitter last night, it was Karen Handel’s husband versus Eric Johnson.

In her new memoir about her short tenure at Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the breast cancer group, and her fight with Planned Parenthood, Karen Handel reprises the 2010 GOP race for governor as proof that she’s willing to take on unsavory characters.

Like Nathan Deal, who is now governor. Or Johnson, another rival who once ruled over the state Senate. Specifically, Handel accused Johnson of sitting on his hands when confronted with an ethics complaint against House Speaker Glenn Richardson, who resigned in 2009 (and is now engaged in a GOP run for the state Senate).

The book was released on Tuesday. Johnson, who has been known to let fly, started the conversation last night on Twitter. Steve Handel, the author’s husband, finished it. To wit:

Eric Johnson, at 20:38 Tuesday:

Only Karen Handel could make Susan G. Komen a villain and turn Planned Parenthood into a victim. She’s like Obama. It’s all …

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Your morning jolt: Who did, and didn’t, apologize for what in Egypt, Libya

cairo

Egyptian protesters chant anti-U.S. slogans in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt, on Tuesday. Egyptian protesters, largely ultra conservative Islamists, have climbed the walls of the U.S. embassy in Cairo, went into the courtyard and brought down the flag, replacing it with a black flag with Islamic inscription, in protest of a film deemed offensive of Islam. AP/Nasser Nasser

Here’s the apparent time line on the “apology” furor that’s now raging between the Mitt Romney and Barack Obama camps, in response to riots over an anti-Islamic film that – in Libya – resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three staffers:

– Following an attack in which Egyptian protestors pulled down the American flag, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo issued a statement saying, in part, that it condemned “the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims — as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions.”

According to …

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In new book, Karen Handel says Karl Rove urged back-tracking by Komen

We have yet to see a copy of her book, and haven’t made it to the bookstore for today’s release, but former Georgia secretary of state Karen Handel apparently says she went up against Karl Rove – and lost – during her fight to separate breast cancer group Susan G. Komen for the Cure from Planned Parenthood.

That’s just the kind of tidbit that might give a publisher reason to think of Handel’s brief stint as a senior vice president for public policy as something that might be worth a book.

In “Planned Bullyhood,” Handel – having lost the 2010 GOP race for governor – tells of her efforts to separate Planned Parenthood, a provider of abortion in addition to women’s health services, from the breast cancer group.

Komen CEO Nancy Brinker eventually caved, and Handel had no choice but to make an exit. From an excerpt of the book posted Monday by anti-abortion blogger Jill Stanek:

Nancy’s reply stunned me. “Karen, I’ve talked to a lot of people. And even Karl …

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Your morning jolt: Sam Nunn joins push for debt discussion in presidential debates

Starting Wednesday, former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn and three retired ex-colleagues will hold four forums aimed at forcing the first presidential debate between Democratic incumbent Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney to take up the federal debt crisis.

Each forum will take the form of a congressional hearing before Nunn and his four co-horts: Pete Domenici, R-New Mexico; Warren Rudman, R-New Hampshire; and Evan Bayh, D-Indiana.

Former U.S. secretarys of the treasury Robert Rubin and James A. Baker, III, will be part of Wednesday’s proceedings in Washington D.C.

You’ll recall that, last month, U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss was one of a quartet of current senators who asked that one of the three presidential debates be dedicated to the deficit recommendations of the Bowles-Simpson Commission.

On CBS’ “This Morning,” U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta was asked whether the Pentagon had begun planning for the massive across-the-board cuts mandated as of Jan. 1 …

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What Charlotte and Tampa shared: Overshadowed candidates and lousy weather

President Barack Obama hugs former President Bill Clinton on stage at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday in Charlotte, N.C. AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

President Barack Obama hugs former President Bill Clinton on stage at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday in Charlotte, N.C. AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Charlotte, N.C. – As a matter of reflex, anyone who witnessed the Republican gathering in Tampa and the Democratic convention that just finished here can’t help but compare the two.

But let’s start by examining what two weeks of mostly scripted political drama had in common:

— Overshadowed candidates: In Tampa, presidential nominee Mitt Romney was preceded by next-tier Republicans who emphasized their life stories (U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida) or hard-nosed approaches (New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie) over the candidate they were on stage to push.

In Charlotte, well-disciplined Democratic speakers never failed to point quickly and directly to the reason for the gathering – the re-election of President Barack Obama. The best of these, former President Bill Clinton, offered a better defense of the …

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Clint Eastwood: Barack Obama a ‘hoax’ on America

In an interview published in the Carmel Pine Cone – yes, that’s the name of the California newspaper, actor and director Clint Eastwood called President Barack Obama “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people,” and said he resisted all GOP efforts to force a script on him when he addressed the Republican gathering in Tampa.

The interview was Eastwood’s first since his appearance last week, which received poor reviews. From the newspaper:

“I had three points I wanted to make,” Eastwood said. “That not everybody in Hollywood is on the left, that Obama has broken a lot of the promises he made when he took office, and that the people should feel free to get rid of any politician who’s not doing a good job. But I didn’t make up my mind exactly what I was going to say until I said it.”

…..Romney’s campaign aides asked for details about what Eastwood would say to the convention.

“They vet most of the people, but I told them, ‘You can’t do …

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Charlie Crist plays the role of Zell Miller in Charlotte

Charlotte, N.C. — Former Republican and former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist this evening played the role of Zell Miller at the Democratic National Convention this evening. Democratic delegates from the Sunshine State had to be warned not to boo him.

Following are excerpts from Crist’s speech:

Half a century ago, Ronald Reagan, the man whose relentless optimism inspired me to enter politics, famously said that he didn’t leave the Democratic Party; the party left him. I can certainly relate. I didn’t leave the Republican Party; it left me. Then again, as my friend Jeb Bush recently noted, Reagan himself would have been too moderate and too reasonable for today’s GOP….

[T]here are common sense solutions within our reach if we have leaders who are willing and enthusiastic to find common ground. No political party has a monopoly on that kind of leadership. But as a former lifelong Republican, it pains me to tell you that today’s Republicans—and their standard-bearers, Mitt …

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Obama’s message tonight: ‘I won’t pretend the path will be quick or easy’

Below are excerpts from President Barack Obama’s speech tonight, accepting the Democratic nomination for his re-election, that were just released. From the looks, FDR and his long slog through the Great Depression will be one theme. I’ve marked in bold some of the more interesting lines:

“But when all is said and done – when you pick up that ballot to vote – you will face the clearest choice of any time in a generation. Over the next few years, big decisions will be made in Washington, on jobs and the economy; taxes and deficits; energy and education; war and peace – decisions that will have a huge impact on our lives and our children’s lives for decades to come.

“On every issue, the choice you face won’t be just between two candidates or two parties.

“It will be a choice between two different paths for America.

“A choice between two fundamentally different visions for the future.

“I won’t pretend the path I’m offering is quick or easy. I never have. You didn’t elect …

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God, Jerusalem and the Democratic National Convention

Charlotte, N.C. – While delegates waited for President Barack Obama’s speech tonight, Wednesday’s bungled handling of a fix to the Democratic platform – restoring the word “God” and reinserting the assertion that Jerusalem is the rightful capital of Israel – filled the news gap.

CNN this morning was filled with stuttering from Democratic leaders, who gave assurances that Obama was the fellow who insisted that the fix be made.

After this morning’s breakfast meeting of the Georgia delegation, several state lawmakers – including Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson of Decatur — recognized that Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa had failed to handle his gavel properly.

In charge of the debacle, Villaraigosa called for three voice votes before he gaveled the issue to a close – and each vote sounded the same. The first mistake, of course, was removing the words in the first place.

“It was a boneheaded decision, said U.S. Rep. David Scott of Atlanta. “I was …

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Your convention jolt: Joe Lowery slams charter school amendment

Charlotte, N.C. — Only a few hours after a late-night stint on the floor of the Democratic National Convention, 90-year-old Joseph Lowery was back it, slamming a GOP-controlled General Assembly and a proposed charter school amendment that “frightens” him.

From my AJC colleague Aaron Gould Sheinin:

“I don’t trust the General Assembly to handle the education of my children,” Lowery said at a Georgia delegation meeting intended to honor him and other civil rights figures.

The proposed amendment to the state Constitution, on this November’s ballot with the presidential election, would re-establish state authority to create public charter schools – if even if local school boards object.

“All my life I’ve heard the legislators talk about local control, local control, local control. Now, they’re advocating taking away the local control from local school boards and putting it in the state Legislature. I don’t trust the Legislature,” said Lowery, who is …

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