Diary

MI Morning Update

 74 Days until Election Day

 August 22, 2008

QUOTE OF THE DAY:

"He is way too ‘Harvard’."

– Derek Shearer, Occidental College Professor of Diplomacy and World Affairs and Ambassador to Finland in the Clinton administration on Barack Obama.

MORNING UPDATE:

STATE CONVENTION TOMORROW…MICHIGAN GOP STATE CONVENTION INFO…here is the information on our upcoming State Convention to take place Saturday, August 23rd.

OBAMA – AYERS COMMERCIAL…a 527 committee prepares a hard-hitting ad about Barack Obama’s friendship with Bill Ayers and questions his judgement associating with a self confessed domestic terrorist?  A risk worth taking?

OBAMA ALREADY HANDING OUT AMBASSADORSHIPS…ARROGANCE…UK newspaper reports that Obama will appoint Caroline Kennedy as America’s Ambassador…really…presidential seal, Airforce wantabee 1, and now Ambassadors?

BOEHNER IN MICHIGAN FOR MCCOTTER & ROGERS…House Republican Leader John Boehner (OH) was in town yesterday campaigning on behalf of Congressman Thaddeus McCotter, Mike Rogers, and other Republican candidates.

MCCAIN ANNOUNCES DEBATE SCHEDULE…the McCain and Obama campaigns agreed to a series of debates.  Obama refused to meet McCain in a series of ‘Town Hall Meetings’ around the country to discuss issues directly with the people of America.  Details and open discussions appear to worry Obama?

RUSSIA LIES…AGAIN…now the Russian Army Deputy Chief of Staff says they plan on occupying parts of Georgia proper indefinitely.  Russia has crossed over the line of being a constructive member of the world community to being a rogue nation, intent on oppressing free people…who happen to be their neighbors.  A disgrace.

OLD EUROPE vs NEW EUROPE…it’s probably time to reassess who are our "real friends" when it comes to spending money on behalf of our allies.  New Europe, the Eastern Europeans, have stepped up from Iraq to Georgia.  Lets move our military bases and all the economic benefit that comes with it out of "Old Europe" and into "friendlier New Europe".  If we are going to spend valuable tax dollars on our allies, lets make sure they are really allies…folks who share our values!

 

 

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THE REST OF THE STORY:

DEBATE SLATE AND DATE ANNOUNCED

According to a press release today, the McCain and Obama campaigns have agreed on a framework for four General Election debates, to be sponsored by the Commission on Presidential Debates. Key elements of the agreement are:

1. First Presidential Debate:

 – Date: September 26 – Site: University of Mississippi – Topic: Foreign Policy & National Security – Moderator: Jim Lehrer – Staging: Podium debate – Answer Format: The debate will be broken into nine, 9-minute segments. The moderator will introduce a topic and allow each candidate 2 minutes to comment. After these initial answers, the moderator will facilitate an open discussion of the topic for the remaining 5 minutes, ensuring that both candidates receive an equal amount of time to comment

2. Vice Presidential Debate

 – Date: October 2nd – Site: Washington University (St. Louis) – Moderator: Gwen Ifill – Staging/Answer Format: To be resolved after both parties’ Vice Presidential nominees are selected.

3. Second Presidential Debate

 – Date: October 7 – Site: Belmont University – Moderator: Tom Brokaw – Staging: Town Hall debate – Format: The moderator will call on members of the audience (and draw questions from the internet). Each candidate will have 2 minutes to respond to each question. Following those initial answers, the moderator will invite the candidates to respond to the previous answers, for a total of 1 minute, ensuring that both candidates receive an equal amount of time to comment. In the spirit of the Town Hall, all questions will come from the audience (or internet), and not the moderator.

4. Third Presidential Debate

 – Date: October 15 – Site: Hofstra University – Topic: Domestic and Economic policy – Moderator: Bob Schieffer – Staging: Candidates will be seated at a table – Answer Format: Same as First Presidential Debate – Closing Statements: At the end of this debate (only) each candidate shall have the opportunity for a 90 second closing statement.

All four debates will begin at 9pm ET, and last for 90 minutes. Both campaigns also agreed to accept the CPD’s participation rules for third-party candidate participation.

 

 

 

TODAY’S TOP STORIES

The following stories and more are available at my Articles of Interest online.

 

 

 

The World Reacts to Russia

By Victor Davis Hanson

Everyone is distracted by the Olympics. The squabbling here on the campaign trail consumes the media. Two presidential candidates and a lame-duck president all are weighing in on foreign policy. No wonder Vladimir Putin thought it was a good time to invade Georgia.

Apparently the Russian prime minister knew exactly what he was doing but assumed no one in the West did. And he was right.

Russians dig in despite promised Georgia pullout

Aug 22, 6:29 AM (ET)

By BELA SZANDELSZKY

POTI, Georgia (AP) – Russian troops held their position in the key town of Gori and were digging in deeper in other strategic areas of Georgia on Friday, the day that Russia’s president said a pullback would be complete.

In Igoeti, a major checkpoint on the road from the capital Tbilisi to Gori, Russian troops were allowing aid organizations and local traffic through on Friday.

Red Cross vehicles, mine-clearing jeeps and trucks carrying peaches were seen heading into Gori early Friday. Russian military helicopters buzzed overhead as military trucks shuttled in and out of Gori past the checkpoint, where Russian flags were flapping in the wind.

GOP to complete ballot

State convention on Saturday will focus on races for Supreme Court and university boards.
Gary Heinlein / Detroit News Lansing Bureau

NOVI – There’s a political convention this weekend.

No, not that one.

Michigan Republicans gather at the Rock Financial Showplace in Novi on Saturday to fill out their fall ballot with candidates for education boards and the state Supreme Court. The focus will be on Supreme Court Chief Justice Clifford Taylor, who has been targeted by the Democrats.

Due back in court this morning, Kilpatrick bolsters his legal team

BY JOE SWICKARD and JIM SCHAEFER • FREE PRESS STAFF WRITERS • August 22, 2008

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick returns to court this morning and he now has three new lawyers on his legal team.

Juan Mateo, a well-respected criminal attorney, will join Kilpatrick’s defense in the assault case Kilpatrick faces; he’s accused of shoving a sheriff’s deputy last month. Detroit lawyer Gerald Evelyn and Todd Flood of Royal Oak will be working on the perjury case that evolved from the text message scandal the Free Press exposed in January.

Mateo and Evelyn are well-known criminal defense attorneys who have handled high-profile civil cases. Flood is a former Wayne County prosecutor who specialized in homicide cases.

 

In Kilpatrick’s corner to the bitter end (not that she’s bitter)

BY BRIAN DICKERSON • FREE PRESS COLUMNIST • August 22, 2008

Deep in her heart, she knows she should have left him long ago.

That was certainly what she’d planned to do, once upon a time, when she was younger and sassier and more confident in her own instincts.

If she’d had her way, he’d be the one sucking up to her on TV, the one scurrying to make excuses every time she screwed up in public.

But that’s not how things had played out. The voters had been smitten, no less than his chief of staff, that sappy ingenue.

Poll: Obama apparently leading McCain in Michigan

8/22/2008, 7:29 a.m. EDT
The Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) – A new poll shows Democrat Barack Obama apparently leading Republican John McCain in Michigan.

The poll conducted by the Detroit Free Press and WDIV-TV shows Obama with 46 percent, McCain with 39 percent, 12 percent undecided and 3 percent backing other candidates. But 31 percent of those polled say they could be persuaded to change their minds by Election Day.

Selzer & Co. of Des Moines, Iowa, conducted the telephone poll of 600 likely voters Sunday through Wednesday. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Group Plans Ad Criticizing Obama’s Ties to Ex-Radical

By JIM RUTENBERG
Published: August 21, 2008

WASHINGTON – A new conservative group co-founded by a former campaign aide to Senator John McCain said Thursday that it would begin a major advertising campaign against Senator Barack Obama emphasizing his association with Bill Ayers, the 1960s radical and Weather Underground founder.

The group, the American Issues Project, says it is registered as a nonprofit organization that does not immediately have to disclose donors to the public.

One of its founders, Ed Failor Jr., is the executive vice president of Iowans for Tax Relief and worked for Senator McCain’s Iowa campaign committee in 2007, before leaving that summer, when Mr. McCain pared back operations. Records show Mr. Failor’s firm earned $50,000 from the McCain campaign.

Obama’s Abortion Problem

By Kathleen Parker

Abortion is back with, dare we say it, biblical vengeance.

Republicans recently have been focused on Barack Obama’s opposition several years ago to "born alive" legislation in Illinois that mirrored similar federal legislation aimed at granting personhood to a fetus/baby that was alive after removal from its mother’s body, either by abortion or premature birth.

In the past few weeks, Obama has been accused of everything from favoring infanticide to lying about his vote, to inventing a cover-up, to being a baby-killing extremist.

McCain Advisers Say Stance on Abortion Is Crucial for No. 2

By ELISABETH BUMILLER
Published: August 21, 2008

SEDONA, Ariz. – Senator John McCain has narrowed his list of potential running mates to a handful of candidates and appears unlikely to select anyone who supports abortion rights, several advisers close to his campaign said on Thursday.

Former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts and Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota are the top candidates as Mr. McCain and his advisers gather over the next several days at Mr. McCain’s cabin near Sedona, they said.

McCain associates recently put forth two other candidates, former Gov. Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania and Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, independent of Connecticut, as possibilities. Both men support abortion rights.

Democrats Non-invitation of Archbishop to Convention an "Insult," Says Former Ambassador to Vatican

Denver, Aug 20, 2008 (CNA).- Archbishop of Denver Charles J. Chaput was not invited to pray or speak at the upcoming Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado, in what former Boston mayor Ray Flynn called a "serious oversight" and an "insult" to the values of pro-life Catholics.

The archbishop himself reportedly did not take the lack of an invitation personally.

The several Catholics on the Democratic Convention’s program include former Colorado state Sen. Polly Baca, "Dead Man Walking" author Sister Helen Prejean, social justice lobbyist Sister Catherine Pinkerton and Pepperdine University professor Douglas W. Kmiec, the Washington Times says.