Few things in life are more fascinating than other people’s money. As the New Hampshire phase of the presidential campaign draws to a close, those of us who are tired of comparing the details of Jeb Bush's plan for medical savings accounts with Bernie Sanders's plan to enroll everybody in Medicare (as if I didn't feel old enough already) have a better way to stay involved in the democratic process: nosing around the candidates' finances. John Kiernan, a reporter for Wallethub.com, has chosen to immerse himself in financial disclosure statements, and who can blame him.Read more
John Kasich has discovered himself in New Hampshire.
“I have found great clarity in New Hampshire," he says, about ten minutes into a town hall in the state's heavily Democratic capital city. It's a fortuitous development. As luck would have it, Kasich has built his campaign around success in the state's first in the nation primary Tuesday. And Kasich wants to use this town hall to share his newfound wisdom with voters.
At times, he sounds less like a presidential candidate than a national therapist. "I think many of us just feel lonely," he says. "We don't know where to go. There's nobody around to celebrate some of our victories. And sometimes there's nobody around toRead more
Longtime Bill Clinton observer David Maraniss saw the former president campaigning in New Hampshire and shared his thoughts on Twitter.
2) It was odd, when BC was introduced and stood on stage w/ Chelsea, he showed nothing on his face, mouth agape, eyes seemingly blank..— david maraniss (@davidmaraniss) February 9, 2016
1) For what it's worth, seeing Bill Clinton for the 1st time in quite a while at campaign rally in Manchester NH...— david maraniss (@davidmaraniss) February 9, 2016
Clinton is "frail," the biographer noted: "no affect at all, just frail, like he had to conserve every ounce of energy. No gleam in his eyes, noRead more
“I'm not a scripted man," John Kasich said Monday afternoon. He's not joking. Kasich does not speak in prepared remarks or easy-to-follow bullet points. Instead, it's like a stream-of-consciousness disquisition on the country, philosophy, government, spirituality, and his own personal journey. He glides seamlessly from one idea to the next, rarely pausing or altering his tone. Without notice, his response to a question about the national debt may transform into a jeremiad about our overreliance on technology.
In his 105th town hall event in New Hampshire Monday, Kasich opened with an odd meta-commentary on his town hall events. "I'm trying to get the right pitch here," Kasich said.Read more
Chris Christie has four events scheduled for today, which is good. Less good is that all of them are in tiny venues, the type of awareness-building, candidate-shopping size places most campaigns hope to do back in early January. This morning, for instance, Christie is booked into a coffee shop in a strip center. Maybe 80 people—counting voters, employees, and media—pack inside, before police close the doors. Another 20 or so stand outside as the snow begins. They hang around because campaign staff promise the locals that as soon as Christie arrives, he'll talk to them, take selfies with them, whatever they want.
But then a group of about a dozen protestors show up.Read more
When former state house speaker Bill O’Brien took to the stage Sunday afternoon to introduce Ted Cruz, he asked the crowd of at least 500 how many were from out of state. More than half of the room at the Peterborough town hall raised their hands.
This underscores the belief of political professionals and journalists: New Hampshire, the mantra goes, is not a "good state" for Cruz. The evangelical son of a pastor who ends each speech asking voters to "lift this country up in prayer", Cruz is trying to build on his win in Iowa last week with at least a respectable showing in the first Republican primary of the year. But it won't come easy.Read more
The NFL ran an ad at last night's Super Bowl encouraging "Super Bowl Babies."
"Data suggests 9 months after a Super Bowl victory, winning cities see a rise in births," the ad text at the beginning of the 60-second spot read.Read more
In an interview with NBC's Chuck Todd, Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton defended Madeleine Albright's claim that "There's a special place in hell for women who don't help women." The comment was widely seen as an attempt to pressure women to vote for Clinton:
CHUCK TODD: I want to ask you about a comment. Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said a comment that I've heard her say before. But it sort of rang differently to a lot of people. She said, "There's a special place in hell for women who don't help women." The implication is that somehow, if you're a Democratic woman and you're not supporting you, what's wrong with you? Do you want the vote to be decided on gender lines?
There was a bit of a dust-up between the Cruz and Carson campaigns in Iowa. On caucus night, Cruz's campaign sent out a message to supporters telling them that "CNN is reporting Ben Carson will stop campaigning after Iowa" and urging them to tell other caucusgoers this news, and it soon spread from there. This, of course, made it sound as if Ben Carson was dropping out. The Carson campaign was understandably peeved, and Cruz publicly apologized for his campaign soon after Iowa.
At the debate Saturday, Cruz was again asked about the incident and he again apologized but also took the opportunity to explain what had happened.Read more
Ted Cruz came out against requiring 18-year-old women to register for the Selective Service and the possibility of being drafted into the military. At a campaign event here Sunday afternoon, Cruz responded to some of his rivals, like Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush, who said in Saturday's debate that women should have to register.
"It was striking that three different people on that stage came out in support of drafting women into combat in the military," Cruz said. "I didn't have an opportunity to respond to that particular question. But I have to admit as I was sitting there listening to that conversation, my reaction was, 'Are you guys nuts?'"
Cruz vowed not to change the currentRead more
The morning after Marco Rubio’s bad debate, a crowd of perhaps 550 packed into a high school cafeteria to see the candidate in the flesh. Outside, the Democratic PAC American Bridge sent two guys dressed up as robots to capitalize on Rubio's failure last night.
The crowd seems receptive, but not jubilant. It seems like it's split about equally between people who are supporting the candidate and people who are shopping. And Rubio opens by referring to his debate misstep. He doesn't make a joke out of it, though. He tries to make a larger point, doubling-down and unpacking what he was saying.Read more
The February 7 GOP presidential debate was a good one for Republican frontrunner Donald Trump. With three days until the New Hampshire primary, where Trump has a commanding lead in the polls, his rivals spent most of the night fighting each other.
The main story in the press coming out of the debate is that Marco Rubio, currently in second place in New Hampshire polls, had a disastrous night because he repeated the same criticism of Barack Obama four times. Rubio had thoughtful and substantive answers on topics like ISIS, religious liberty, and the right to life. But Chris Christie's mockery of Rubio's repetitive remarks about Obama was the highlight of the night in theRead more
Saturday was the night the governors struck back.
The biggest moment of the night came by way of New Jersey governor Chris Christie, attacking one of the high-flying senators post-Iowa, Marco Rubio. The Florida senator was asked directly about questions many of his gubernatorial rivals have made about his lack of experience and accomplishments. Rubio replied with a short list and then pivoted toward a critique of Barack Obama.
And let's dispel once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn't know what he's doing. He knows exactly what he's doing. Barack Obama is undertaking a systematic effort to change this country, to make America more like the rest ofRead more
During the GOP Debate, moderator Mary Katharine Ham asked Marco Rubio about social issues.
"Senator Rubio, one of the lazier pieces of political conventional wisdom is that so-called social issues are hurting Republicans with young people. But on the two most prominent social issues, polling with millennials moves in different directions. On one hand, it is clear, young people across the political spectrum increasingly favor same-sex marriage. However, young voters have not moved to the left on abortion. In fact, large numbers of them favor at least some modest restrictions that conservatives have supported.Read more
The big media story from the debate will be Marco Rubio’s confrontation with Chris Christie. But the larger picture might be about how well Donald Trump did.
Trump was relatively reserved. He wasn't bombastic. Or erratic. He was—by Trumpian standards—presidential? Okay, let's not get crazy. Trump wasn't able to stay in check for the full three hours—he couldn't help himself from lashing out at Cruz in his closing statement. And where candidates often lash out at the media when they get in trouble in a debate, Trump attacked the audience. The move was classic pro-wrestling—like Vince McMahon baiting the crowd. And it was so crazy that it kind of worked.Read more
Google Trends regularly tweets out trending questions about candidates and data prior to and during presidential debates.
Before the debate, Google Trends tweeted the top trends for all candidates on the GOP debate stafe, but deleted the one about Jeb Bush. Here is the deleted tweet:
The top question: "Will Jeb Bush drop out?"
The Google Trends website showed the same data.
It is unclear why the tweet was deleted.Read more
New Jersey governor Chris Christie went after Florida senator Marco Rubio in Saturday's Republican debate:
Transcript via the Christie campaign:
DAVID MUIR: I do want to ask Governor Christie, you said, fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. You heard Senator Rubio make the case that he has the experience. Your response?
CHRIS CHRISTIE: Sure. First, let's remember something. Every morning when a United States Senator wakes up, they think about what kind of speech can I give, or what kind of bill can I drop? Every morning, when I wake up, I think about, what kind of problem do I need to solve for the people who actually elected me? It's a different experience. It's a much different experience.Read more
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