The fall of Kwame Kilpatrick

The former mayor of Detroit, Democrat Kwame Kilpatrick, was convicted on racketeering charges Monday, and could be looking at 20 years in prison.  According to NBC News, “prosecutors said he presided over a breathtaking profit machine by rigging contracts and demanding bribes.”

Kilpatrick was convicted of at least six other criminal counts and acquitted of one, and jurors said they were unable to reach a verdict on two. Kilpatrick was charged with 30 federal crimes. The verdict was still being delivered in federal court in Detroit.

Jurors began deliberating Feb. 18.

Kilpatrick, 42, was charged with bribery, extortion and tax evasion

Prosecutors said that Kilpatrick, a Democrat, steered $83 million in city contracts to Ferguson in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in kickbacks. They also told jurors that the ex-mayor raided his own nonprofit for personal expenses.

The Washington Post reports that Kilpatrick looked “surprised and puzzled” when the verdict came down, but judging by the Post’s description of the charges, he really shouldn’t have been all that surprised:

Prosecutors said Kilpatrick ran a “private profit machine” out of Detroit’s City Hall. The government presented evidence to show he got a share of the spoils after ensuring that Bobby Ferguson’s excavating company was awarded millions in work from the water department.

Business owners said they were forced to hire Ferguson as a subcontractor or risk losing city contracts. Separately, fundraiser Emma Bell said she gave Kilpatrick more than $200,000 as his personal cut of political donations, pulling cash from her bra during private meetings. A high-ranking aide, Derrick Miller, told jurors that he often was the middle man, passing bribes from others.

Internal Revenue Service agents said Kilpatrick spent $840,000 beyond his mayoral salary.

U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade hailed the verdict and said Kilpatrick was “grabbing money from the citizens he was elected to serve.”

Detroit has been disintegrating while Kilpatrick and his associates used it as a piggy bank.  Confronted with that $840k of spending above his means, his defense attorney claimed Kilpatrick was “often showered with cash gifts from city workers and political supporters during holidays and birthdays.”  Funny, Detroit doesn’t look like the sort of place where prosperous citizens would be blowing their abundant disposable income on gifts to throw at their beloved political leaders.

Kilpatrick is already well on his way to being airbrushed out of the Party – the Huffington Post got through an entire article about him without using the word “Democrat” once – but in happier times he was a young rising star, endorsed by a certain other product of generations-long single-party rule as “doing an outstanding job of gathering together the leadership at every level in Detroit.

CNN’s latest poll deconstructed: Does it really show a Romney victory?

CNN released a poll this morning taken between 11/2 and 11/4. Among likely voters, it projects that the election is tied 49 percent Obama/49 percent Romney (page 2). Looking at the poll by party affiliation, it also projected that 93 percent of Democrats, 1 percent of Republicans and 37 percent of Independents would vote for Obama. On the other hand, it projects that 99 percent of Republicans, 5 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of Independents will vote for Romney (page 30).

So, if Romney has 99 percent of the Republican vote, 5 percent of the Democratic vote (Obama comparably having only 1 percent of the Republican vote) and is ahead of Obama by a very impressive 22 percent among Independents, how can the race be tied?

Well, to quote CNN: “Among those likely voters, 41 percent describe themselves as Democrats, 29 percent describe themselves as Independents and 30 percent describe themselves as Republicans.

So, let’s say we had a total of 1,000 voters, 410 Democrats, 290 Independents and 300 Republicans. Voting for President Obama, we would have 381 Democrats (93 percent of 410), 107 Independents (37 percent of 290), and 3 Republicans (1 percent of 300), for a total of 491 votes. Voting for Gov. Romney, we would have 297 Republicans (99 percent of 300), 162 Independents (56 percent of 290), and 21 Democrats (5 percent of 410) for a total of 480 votes. Both candidates’ totals would be around 49 percent as CNN projects.

Of course, this assumes that Democrats vote 11 percent more than Republicans. That’s a bigger advantage than Democrats had in the 2008 in the midst of “ObamaMania”. Even the CNN poll found 42 percent of Republicans “Extremely Enthusiastic” (as opposed to 28 percent in 2008) versus 37 percent of Democrats (as opposed to 45 percent in 2008) (pages 6-7). An 11 percent Democratic edge seems particularly optimistic in a year when the most dangerous place to be on Election Day may be between a Republican and the voting booth.

On Oct. 26, Gallup issued an analysis of the demographics of likely voters based on its October 1-24 daily election tracking. Gallup estimated that this year’s turnout would be 36 percent Republicans, 35 percent Democrats and 29 percent Independents. Let’s apply Gallup’s voting percentages to CNN’s polling results assuming 1,000 voters made up of 350 Democrats, 290 Independents and 360 Republicans. Voting for President Obama, we would have 326 Democrats (93 percent of 350), 107 Independents (37 percent of 290), and 4 Republicans (1 percent of 360), for a total of 437 votes. Voting for Governor Romney, we would have 356 Republicans (99 percent of 360), 162 Independents (56 percent of 290), and 18 Democrats (5 percent of 350) for a total of 536 votes. So, President Obama would get 44 percent of the vote and Gov. Romney would get 55 percent, a huge Romney victory.

Rasmussen projects that 39 percent of voters will be Democrats and 37 percent Republicans, leaving 24 percent Independent.

Let’s apply Rasmussen’s voting percentages to CNN’s polling results assuming 1,000 voters made up of 390 Democrats, 240 Independents and 370 Republicans. Voting for President Obama, we would have 363 Democrats (93 percent of 390), 89 Independents (37 percent of 240), and 4 Republicans (1 percent of 370), for a total of 456 votes. Voting for Gov. Romney, we would have 366 Republicans (99 percent of 370), 134 Independents (56 percent of 240), and 20 Democrats (5 percent of 390) for a total of 520 votes. So, President Obama would get 46 percent of the vote and Governor Romney would get 52 percent, again, a huge Romney victory.

This CNN poll is truly great news for Republicans unless you believe that Democrats will vote 11 percent more than Republican this year and very few people do (outside of CNN apparently). The reality is that, using CNN’s own numbers, anything under an 11 percent voting advantage for Democrats results in a popular vote victory for Gov. Romney. You have to wonder why they chose 11 percent.

The Romney campaign discusses the state of the race

Romney political director Rich Beeson, senior advisor Russ Schriefer, and pollster Neil Newhouse held a conference call Wednesday afternoon to discuss their view of the presidential race.  All pronounced themselves happy with Mitt Romney’s current position.  ”We’re very confident and very happy with where we are,” said Schriefer.

Beeson was encouraged by the general advantage in enthusiasm he sees among Republican voters, particularly since the first presidential debate.  ”Intensity is on our side in this,” added Newhouse.  ”Intensity drives turnout.”

The Romney campaign sees the electoral landscape as generally tilted against President Obama, with a general air of disapproval for his job performance, and an increasingly positive attitude toward his prospective replacement.  Newhouse noted that Obama is 8 to 10 points in the hole on his Strong Approval vs. Strong Disapproval polling numbers, which he viewed as foreshadowing the voting pattern to come on November 6.

The team was encouraged by Romney’s strong performance in early voting and the get-out-the-vote “ground game,” where even state operations smaller than Obama’s have been matching or exceeding the opposition’s performance.  Newhouse cited Obama’s far weaker showing in Florida early voting, a good 70 percent below his 2008 levels, as evidence that it’s a “stretch” for pollsters to assume the 2008 electorate – or one even more favorable to Obama – will reappear in 2012.

In Ohio, Newhouse noted that redistricting makes precinct-to-precinct comparisons with 2008 difficult.  Instead, he drew encouragement from counties John McCain carried in 2008 posting higher early voting totals than Obama counties.  Romney has built an even more formidable early advantage in Colorado.

In some other swing states, there is evidence to suggest that Obama is not racking up the early-vote lead in certain key areas that would help him secure an overall victory on Election Day.  Newhouse saw the Democrats as falling behind the pace needed to build up the 130,000-vote early lead they need to win Iowa, where Republicans have actually scored a small advantage in voter registration.  In a similar vein, the necessary 80,000 vote lead in Nevada’s Clark County doesn’t seem to be materializing for Obama, giving the Romney team hope of carrying the state on Election Day.  (It was noted that Obama’s campaign appearance in Nevada is significant evidence that he knows he has problems there.)  The dramatic collapse of Obama’s early vote edge in North Carolina and Florida has made those states extremely difficult for him to pick up.

Newhouse offered a reminder that various polling organizations define “likely voter” in different ways, and the best polls are those which most carefully screen out unreliable voters.  He cited the Pew survey as an example of an absurdly thin likely voter screen, as it treats fully 96 percent of registered voters as “likely.”  This goes back to the point about voter enthusiasm, which accounts for much of the difference between registered voters, and those who will reliably cast actual ballots.

Much encouragement was found in Romney’s lead among independent voters, with national polls over the last ten days producing a huge 11 point average lead for the Republican.  Newhouse noted that 10 out of 14 polls in Ohio over the last two weeks have given Romney an average 6 point lead with independents; to lose the state after building such a lead would contradict long political history in Ohio.

After the conference call, some data to back up the Romney team’s feelings on Nevada was delivered by the Republican National Committee: “Republicans narrowed the gap on early voting in Clark County by almost 9 points compared to 2008. (Republicans up 3.4%, Democrats down 5.4%.) Republicans have experienced 33 percent growth in Clark County early voters compared to this point in 2008, adding over 27,000 voters to our total. Democrats have grown by less than 8 percent, adding fewer than 12,000 voters to their total. Republicans are on pace to come out of Clark County early voting down fewer than 60,000 votes out of nearly 470,000 cast. This is a huge shift from 2008, where Republicans trailed by nearly 84,000 votes out of only 390,000 cast.”

The RNC memo also emphasized something about the early voting picture that doesn’t augur well for President Obama: “Democrats have cannibalized their most likely voters to try to maintain their margins in early voting. Through eleven days of early voting, over 57 percent of Democrats who voted in all four of the last four general elections had already requested an absentee ballot or voted early. That means Republicans have 30 percent more of our most reliable voters still available on Election Day.”

Is Obama buying the election with his welfare explosion?

With the unprecedented budget explosion of means-tested, welfare-related entitlements, does Team Obama think it can buy the election?

It’s a cynical question. But I wouldn’t put it past that cynical bunch.

Remember Harry Hopkins, Franklin Roosevelt’s close aid? It was Hopkins who argued tax and tax, spend and spend, elect and elect. Sound familiar? And if I’m not mistaken, the high-tax, anti-rich, big-spending, redistributionist FDR is one of Barack Obama’s idols.

So let’s take a look at some of the recent budget-explosion data points:

According to Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, means-tested welfare programs soared to over $1 trillion last year. The federal government accounted for $750 billion of that, while $250 billion came from the states, which leveraged federal payments into even larger expenses.

Between 2008 and 2011, federal welfare payments have jumped 32 percent. Food stamps have surged, with 71 percent more spending on the program in 2011 compared with 2008. Health payments, principally Medicaid, have climbed 37 percent.

By the way, it’s not just the deep recession and weak recovery that’s driving up these programs. It’s a substantial eligibility expansion, which started under George W. Bush, but has gone much further under President Obama.

In a larger budget context, reporter Jeffrey H. Anderson uses a Treasury Department study to chronicle the 7-Eleven presidency. In fiscal year 2012, ending Sept. 30, the government spent nearly $11 for every $7 of revenues taken in. The exact figures are $2.5 trillion in tax revenues and $3.5 trillion in spending. In other words, it spent 44 percent more than it had coming in.

Previous fiscal years look even worse: The government spent 56 percent more than revenues in fiscal year 2011 and 60 percent more in fiscal year 2010.

All in all, according to Anderson, the government under the Obama administration received $6.8 trillion in taxes and spent $10.7 trillion – 56 percent more than it had available.

What’s going on here is fiscal profligacy on the grandest scale in American history. And there are consequences.

Massive amounts of capital are being drained from the private sector and transferred to the government. This is one reason why American businesses have gone on a virtual capital-investment strike. Small businesses, in particular, can’t get the capital being drained by Uncle Sam.

After four years of trillion-dollar deficits, both businesses and individuals have held back investment because they fear massive tax increases are on the way. That’s a big reason why the so-called recovery has been so weak.

In addition, in our new entitlement nation, growing government dependency is ruining the very moral fiber and backbone of America’s traditional work ethic. Increasingly, the feds are paying more to not work, rather than providing after-tax incentives to go back to work.

Mitt Romney has taken a lot of flak for raising the issue of growing government dependency. But however inartfully he may have expressed his view, his basic story is correct. The sheer volume of spending going on in this country is bringing us ever closer to bankruptcy.

And consider this: The spending explosion for means-tested welfare programs is outpacing spending on Social Security and Medicare, which are themselves veering toward bankruptcy.

I may be too cynical about Obama trying to buy the election with this entitlement explosion. Perhaps. But Obama wants to raise taxes in order to spend more on government unions and entitlement programs. It is redistribution, but it could be vote-buying, too.

Top 10 Obama foreign policy blunders

All Mitt Romney needs to do in the next debate Monday is go through this list of blunders and the president will be reduced, once again, to stammering through ponderous answers.

1. Benghazi security

Four Americans, including a U.S. ambassador, are dead after being sent into harm’s way in service to their country without adequate concern given for their safety. Even though hundreds of incidents occurred in the past year against diplomatic missions in Libya, the State Department stripped security assets from the Benghazi consulate, in part, to be able to tout the success of toppling the Gaddafi regime by claiming normalcy had returned.

2. AWOL at 3 a.m.

All Mitt Romney needs to do at the upcoming debate is to stare Obama in the eye and say, “Mr. President. In the days leading up to the Benghazi terror raid you missed numerous national security briefings, and the day following the attack you flew off to Las Vegas for a political fundraiser. When your 3 a.m. call came, you were AWOL.” Watch Obama dissemble on the stage.

3. Benghazi lies

Even after last week’s debate, the president has a lot of explaining to do in regard to Libya. How could Ambassador Susan Rice and White House spokesman Jay Carney insist for days after the attack that it was a spontaneous mob inflamed by a movie trailer mocking Islam? Not only did the terrorists come heavily armed and worked with well-coordinated precision, later reports said there wasn’t even a demonstration at the consulate before the raid.

4. Too busy for world leaders

The annual U.N. General assembly meeting brings world leaders to New York, where besides addressing the international body, officials have an opportunity to meet with each other. Indeed, it is a long-standing tradition for the president to hold bilateral meetings during their visit. Obama addressed the body but eschewed any additional meetings, despite urgent requests from other leaders.

5. Israel outrage

Obama has done everything he can to damage the United States’ long-standing relationship with Israel, which is increasingly seeing its existence threatened by Iran’s nuclear ambitions and by the rise to power of Islamist radicals across the region following the Arab Spring. But Obama snubbed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in New York, has battled Israel over settlements, and offended Israeli officials by urging a return to 1967 borders.

6. Russia reset

The Obama administration’s famed “reset” of relations with Russia has mostly reset the world into hostile opposing camps. Nowhere better is this seen than with the Syria crisis where Russia and China have teamed up in the United Nations to block the United States and the West from implementing tough sanctions against the Assad regime.

7. Allies rebuffed

Eastern European nations are unhappy that Obama caved into Russia on canning the deployment of a missile defense system. Israel believes they are being tossed to the wolves of the Mideast. The “special relationship” with Great Britain has faded. Persian Gulf leaders thought the U.S. was too quick to turn on former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

8. Iran muddle

Iran moves ever closer to obtaining a nuclear weapon but the Obama administration has no real plan to stop Tehran from threatening Israel with annihilation. Obama’s initial strategy-to use his powers of persuasion to convince the hard-core Islamists to see the light-failed miserably. And the watered-down U.N. sanctions imposed on Iran aren’t faring much better. His best opportunity to change the course of history in Iran was missed when he ignored in 2009 the pleas from protesters hoping for a true democracy.

9. Iraq-Afghan wars bungle

Obama policies have managed to bungle matters with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. By not negotiating a status-of-forces agreement with Iraq, the U.S. will have a greatly diminished role in aiding the fledgling democracy to develop and in protecting American interests in the region. In Afghanistan, Obama’s outright declaration of a withdrawal date allows the enemy to wait us out before commencing with their attempt to create a radical Islamist state.

10. Arab Spring backfire

Obama believed that his sincere outreach to the Muslim world would ease tensions and lead the way to solving problems in the Mideast. Yet when the Arab Spring erupted, Obama was on the wrong side of history nearly every step of the way-ignoring Iranian protesters’ urgent pleas-and giving aid and comfort to rebels in Egypt and Libya without regard to their terror leanings. Now Muslims across the world are protesting America, with Obama playing the role of the “Great Satan.”

Your “green energy” bankruptcy of the day: Satcon Technology

“But don’t forget, you put $90 billion – like 50 years worth of breaks – into solar and wind, to Solyndra and Fisker and Tesla and Ener1. I mean, I had a friend who said, you don’t just pick the winners and losers; you pick the losers.”  –  Mitt Romney to Barack Obama, during the first presidential debate

Another Obama loser has gone belly up – a relative bargain this time, costing American taxpayers only $3 million in Department of Energy Loans.  That’s almost a “success” by Obama standards.

This time it’s Satcon Technology, which the Heritage Foundation recalls was given that $3 million to develop “a compact, lightweight power conversion device that is capable of taking utility-scale solar power and outputting it directly into the electric utility grid at distribution voltage levels – eliminating the need for large transformers.”

It looks like the need for large transformers wasn’t ready to be eliminated.  The Associated Press, which for some reason did not see fit to mention the Energy Department loan, recounts the unhappy financial history that made the company such an attractive target for Obama “investment:”

The Boston company, which makes products for large-scale solar power installations, filed its petitions in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware after defaulting on a portion of its debt earlier this month.

Satcon has struggled financially for several years. Its power-conversion devices and other products were in steady demand in 2011, but never translated to profitability. The company posted losses each year from 2005 to 2011, and it reported a loss for the first six months of 2012.

In January, Satcon announced plans to cut 140 jobs, or about 35 percent of its workforce, and close a factory in Canada, blaming a drop in demand for solar power installations around the world.

Reuters adds that Satcon reported a loss for 22 consecutive quarters, as it was “squeezed by falling demand after top consumer Europe lowered subsidies for renewable energy.”  So a solar-junk company subsidized by the American government failed because foreign governments didn’t feel like subsidizing the purchase of its products any more.  Wonderful!

Romney campaign enlists over 300 military generals

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced this week he was beefing up his campaign with some top brass: more than 300 retired general and flag officers, who will serve in a consultant role on his campaign’s military advisory panel.

The list, which contains more than two dozen retired four-stars, includes Gens. James Conway and Paul X Kelley, former commandants of the Marine Corps; Army Gen. Tommy Franks, who led the initial assault of the Taliban in Afghanistan following the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks and oversaw the overthrow of Saddam Hussein in 2003; and Army Gen. James Joseph Lindsay, the first commander of U.S. Special Operations Command.

A wildcard choice on the list is retired Army Gen. Hugh Shelton, who endorsed Hillary Clinton in 2008, but made a stir four years earlier by pointedly declining to endorse a fellow retired Army four-star on the Democratic ticket,, Gen. Wesley Clark.

Shelton’s 2010 book, “Without Hesitation”, has been billed by some an indictment of neoconservatives in the George W. Bush administration, such as Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz.

Shelton’s selection for the panel has the potential to create waves for Romney, who has shown a penchant for neoconservative thought in his policy statements on foreign affairs and defense.

Human Events has reached out to Shelton for comment on his selection to the board.

While Conway, who served as Marine Corps Commandant from 2006 until his retirement in 2010, advocated for the continuation of the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy while in office, few of the prominent names of the list have a public political stance or a clear agenda.

According to Foreign Policy’s The Cable, the panel members are not set to have any official meetings, but have indicated their willingness to support Romney publicly and to offer advice as needed.

In a statement released by the campaign, Conway said he had joined Romney’s campaign because of a conviction that he “gets it.”

“I consider the unprecedented national debt amongst the five greatest threats to the security of our great nation,” Conway said.

“And yet, I see no indication the current administration, if re-elected, is intent on changing that trajectory.  Clearly Defense should bear a portion of the burden in order to regain control of our debt, but the idea of massive military cuts – at a time of increased global instability-should not even be in the cards.”

Franks also published a statement, saying he was endorsing Romney because of the country’s need for “level-headed leadership which will protect our interests and defend our values with clarity and without apology.”

Hollywood’s hysterical ‘cancer screening’ lie for Obama

The Hollywood Women for Obama Club wants you to vote with your “lady parts.” I want the women of America to vote with their lady smarts. The latest ad from a trio of Tinsel Town actresses spreads one of the stupidest lies about Mitt Romney this election cycle. Fantasyland needs a fact check.

According to starlets Scarlett Johansson, Eva Longoria and Kerry Washington, the GOP presidential ticket wants to “end” funding for “cancer screenings.” If you and your reproductive organs don’t vote for Obama, the doe-eyed celebrities ominously imply, people will DIE, DIE, DIE!

This scare-mongering falsehood has been repeated endlessly by Planned Parenthood and the Obama campaign itself. An official Obama for America ad released in August accuses Romney’s running mate, Paul Ryan, of backing measures to “allow employers to deny women access to cancer screenings.” It also is being used by demagogic Democrats in key Senate races (in Montana, for example).

This much is true: Romney and Ryan do indeed support ending all federal taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood’s billion-dollar empire. One-third of the budget of the nation’s largest abortion provider, which masquerades as a comprehensive health care provider, comes from government.

But here’s what the famous femmes don’t tell you: Planned Parenthood does not provide women with mammograms. PP’s “women’s health” mantle is a sham. An undercover investigation of 30 Planned Parenthood clinics in 27 different states, conducted by pro-life group Live Action, confirmed that the abortion provider does not perform breast cancer screenings. “We don’t provide those services whatsoever,” a staffer at Planned Parenthood of Arizona admitted. Planned Parenthood’s Comprehensive Health Center clinic in Overland Park, Kan., acknowledged: “We actually don’t have a, um, mammogram machine, at our clinics.”

But don’t just take Live Action’s word for it. In June 2012, the Obama Health and Human Services Department responded to a request for information about how many Planned Parenthood clinics were certified to operate mammogram facilities. “Our search did not find any documents pertinent to your request,” HHS told the Alliance Defense Fund.

Got that? Fraudulent Hollywood harridans and their hero in the White House have been deliberately deceiving women into thinking that eliminating Planned Parenthood subsidies would mean a catastrophic end to affordable cancer screening services. But the abortion provider’s purported “referral services” to outside mammogram facilities are negligible – especially given the widespread availability of free and low-cost breast and cervical cancer screening services across the country supported by both private and public grants.

Wait, that’s not all. In the real world, it’s the Obama administration, not Republicans, who have actively presided over and promoted a drop in cancer screenings for both men and women over the past four years. You can thank Democratic crusaders for health care rationing in the White House. They want all the glory of championing socialized medicine, but cut and run from the consequences at election time.

Under Obamacare, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) will be empowered to determine which health care services are “medically appropriate.” For nearly three decades, the federal panel of primary care physicians and epidemiologists has issued nonbinding guidelines and A-F ratings of recommended medical procedures. But as Forbes columnist Dr. Paul Hsieh explains:

“ObamaCare links insurance coverage of preventive medical services to their USPSTF rating. … (U)nder ObamaCare, Medicare payment decisions will become increasingly controlled by the new Independent Payment Advisory Board, explicitly created to reduce Medicare spending. … To reduce costs, many private insurers will likely drop coverage for “C” and “D” rated services. Hence under ObamaCare, the USPSTF guidelines will likely become the de facto standards for both government and private health insurance coverage.”

And that means dropping coverage for the very services Scar-Jo and her femme friends are accusing the GOP of threatening.

Note: The USPSTF is the same review panel that advised cutting back on routine ovarian cancer screenings last month, recommended fewer prostate cancer screening tests in May 2012, and proposed mammogram restrictions for women over age 50 in 2009.

In fact, the Mayo Clinic reported this summer that mammogram screenings for women in their 40s have declined nearly 6 percent since the Obama panel announced its decision in 2009. “Comparing mammography rates before and after publication of the new guidelines,” the Mayo Clinic wrote, “researchers found that the recommendations were associated with a 5.72 percent decrease in the mammography rate for women ages 40-49. Over a year, nearly 54,000 fewer mammograms were performed in this age group.”

It’s no surprise the Hollywood “cancer screening” horror ad script was written by left-wing actor/director Rob Reiner of “All in the Family” and Archie Bunker fame. These Obama-promoting meatheads and their hysterical handmaidens inhabit a manufactured world impervious to facts and fiscal realities.

Crowley covers Obama’s fudged facts

As predicted, during his second presidential debate with Mitt Romney, President Obama repeated several claims he has made on the stump, even though they had already been reviewed by us (and others) and pronounced:


Perhaps the most brazen example was the president’s claim that “We have increased oil production to the highest levels in 16 years. Natural gas production is the highest it’s been in decades.” Romney responded that “the president’s right in terms of the additional oil production, but none of it came on federal land. As a matter of fact, oil production is down 14 percent this year on federal land, and gas production was down 9 percent.”

Perhaps Governor Romney reads the Debunker?

As this column reported eight months ago, “While it’s true that U.S. oil and natural gas production are up, this is not thanks to, but in spite of Obama. All the increased production has come from state and private lands, where the President has little power. On federal lands controlled by Obama, production has actually fallen.

“According to an Institute for Energy Research analysis of data from the Interior Department’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue, production of oil increased 14 percent and natural gas 12 percent on private and state lands in Fiscal Year 2011, while on federal lands, production of oil declined 11 percent and natural gas 6 percent.”

The increase from 12 to 14 percent in the decline of oil production, and from 6 to 9 percent in the decline in natural gas production is because Romney is citing a Department of Energy report released since that column was published.

But Obama’s biggest whopper was a new one, so colossal that we could never have anticipated it.

Responding to a question about the terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, Romney highlighted Obama’s reluctance to use the word “terrorist,” and his administration’s repeated attempts to portray the attack as connected to a spontaneous protest over a Youtube video.

“There were many days that passed before we knew whether this was a spontaneous demonstration, or actually whether it was a terrorist attack,” said Romney. “And there was no demonstration involved. It was a terrorist attack and it took a long time for that to be told to the American people …. [Y]ou have to ask yourself why didn’t we know five days later when the ambassador to the United Nations went on TV to say that this was a demonstration. How could we have not known?”

Obama replied, “The day after the attack … I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people in the world that … this was an act of terror ….”

Romney asked a yes-or-no question: “It was not a spontaneous demonstration, is that what you’re saying?” Obama dodged until Crowley deflected the question, interrupting to say that Obama “did in fact … call it an act of terror…

Obama said, “Get the transcripts,” and Crowley repeated, “…the transcripts…” Let us therefore turn to the transcript of Obama’s Rose Garden speech of September 12.

Obama did mention “acts [plural] of terror” – but this followed references to “the 9/11 attacks” and “troops who made the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq and Afghanistan” where terrorists have used improvised explosive devices to kill U.S. forces as well as civilians. Was this ambiguous reference to “acts of terror” the same as labeling the Benghazi attack itself “terrorism”? Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler, answers: “From our many years of covering diplomacy we would say there is a world of difference, but readers can draw their own conclusions.”

Perhaps more important, Obama had prefaced these remarks with the statement, “We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others” – implying that the attack was actually provoked by the anti-Islamic video. The administration would repeat this implication more forcefully over the ensuing 13 days, culminating in President Obama’s September 25 address at the United Nations.

Romney may have swayed undecideds on economy

Barack Obama may have come out swinging hard, but the second presidential debate of 2012 was no game-changer. That was the opinion of three seasoned professors and pollsters who talked to Human Events moments after the close of the stormy encounter between Obama and Mitt Romney Tuesday at Hofstra University in New York Tuesday evening.

If there were any inroads made Tuesday among the voters who are still “undecided” at this point, the three political authorities agreed, they were made by Romney with his strong underscoring of a new policy on the economy.

“I didn’t see the debate tonight as a game-changer – not at all,” G. Terry Madonna, public policy professor and veteran pollster at Pennsylvania’s Franklin and Marshall University, told Human Events, “Yes, Obama was much better and more aggressive than in the first debate. But will it change any polls? Probably not. I just don’t this as a performance that will shake up the race. There was no bombshell.

Madonna, whose polling and analysis have made him a familiar fixture on Keystone State news programs for decades, said that “Romney’s answer on Libya was not very strong. He should have just said unequivocally that in his statement in the Rose Garden following the (U.S. deaths in Libya), the President did not call this an ‘act of terror.’”

However, he added, “if Romney did have a strong moment when he connected with undecided voters, it would have to be with his answers on the economy and on energy. But as to whether this will move those voters in a big way, I don’t see it. This was not as important as the first debate was.”

Madonna specifically criticized the town hall format for the Hofstra debate as “a disaster” and predicted there would now “be a huge debate on (moderator) Candy Crowley’s role as a fact-checker.”

Historian David Pietrusza, author of three much-praised books on U.S. presidential campaigns, predicted “there will be a moderate movement to Romney among ‘undecided’ voters based solely on the economy. The largest percentage of Tweets – 29 percent – was on the economy, and Romney owned that issue.”

Pietrusza emphasized that Romney was at his best when the questions were on economic issues. As he told us, “Romney performed very effectively in reminding voters of the misery inflicted on the nation in the last four years – unemployment, inflation, the deficit, energy. This time Romney is ‘change.’ Obama is ‘same old, same old.’

“But Obama gained steam at end when Libya came up. Romney was blithering on assault weapons and weaker overall when the discussion moved away from the economy.”

Henry Payne, editor of the “Michigan View” that is considered ‘must reading’ for political activists and pundits in his state, agreed. Payne felt that “Obama was clearly trying to turn this debate back on to things such as Romney’s wealth, things that were dominant before the first televised debate finally brought the campaign back to issues.. But every time questions came up in this debate on the economy or gas prices, Romney reminded people ‘you’re hurting’ and this played into his hands.”

Did Romney gain ground among undecided voters? Payne feels he did because, “as he did in the first debate, Romney talked a lot about how he worked with Democrats while governor of Massachusetts and struck a bipartisan tone. Independent voters, who comprise a lot of the ‘undecideds,’ clearly love that kind of talk. Obama, on the other hand, was talking class warfare and going on the attack on Romney’s wealth. You can clearly see tonight who people would consider the candidate more likely to unify the country when the campaign is over.”