TOP NEWS: Democracy: May 31, 2012
Excerpts and more top stories
Messina: There’s ‘a billion-dollar fund’ to beat Obama - Byron Tau, Politico
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina is, once again, sounding the alarm bells about conservative groups spending a billion dollars to defeat President Obama in an email to supporters.
The unnecessarily frenzied handwringing over Barack, Biden, and Bain - Robert Shrum, The Week
The ads have just begun, and even early results are not yet in. The latter two events are a summer away. The interregnum invites the rise of sideshow stories — which, in recent days, featured hand-wringing over Obama’s ads about Bain and recycled theories about dumping Joe Biden.
For the White House, a Wary Wait as Syria Boils - Peter Baker, NY Times
The United States has expelled the top Syrian diplomat and on Wednesday outlined more financial sanctions against Syria, but there is no serious support inside the West Wing for American military action at this point. Some officials, though, advocate arming the Syrian opposition or doing more to help others do so.
Some G.O.P. Foreign Policy Experts Are Tepid on Romney- Richard A. Oppel, Jr., NY Times
The reason, according to several Republicans familiar with the matter: concerns about Mr. Romney’s aggressive statements on trade policy toward China, a keen issue for Mr. Kissinger, who helped reopen relations with China and who later, as a consultant, has had clients with significant interests there.
Montana bucks the court- George F. Will, Washington Post
Montana uses an interesting argument to justify defiance of a Supreme Court decision: Because the state is particularly prone to political corruption, it should be trusted to constrict First Amendment protections of political speech.
Condoleezza Rice Endorses Romney Citing His Leadership- John McCormick, Bloomberg
Former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice endorsed Mitt Romney as the Republican presidential nominee at a fundraiser in California last night, saying he understands the nation’s special place in the world.
The Stakes in the Walker Recall- E.J. Dionne, Washington Post
Walker is not being challenged because he pursued conservative policies but because Wisconsin has become the most glaring example of a new and genuinely alarming approach to politics on the right. It seeks to use incumbency to alter the rules and tilt the legal and electoral playing field decisively toward the interests of those in power.
Citizens United Attacks From Justice Stevens Continue-Mike Sacks, Huff Post
A day after receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom, retired Justice John Paul Stevens on Wednesday night backed President Barack Obama’s suggestion during his 2010 State of the Union address that the Citizens United decision could lead to “foreign entities” bankrolling American elections.He urged the U.S. Supreme Court to explicitly explain why the president’s words were “not true,” as Justice Samuel Alito famously mouthed on camera, breaking the justices’ usual stoic appearance during the president’s annual speech.
June 2012 could be America’s pivotal month- Philip Klein, The DC Examiner
June is usually a sleepy month during any presidential election, but not this year.
Two events this month will not only affect the outcome of the presidential election, but also have a dramatic impact on the direction of the country, no matter who wins in November.
Mitt Romney’s Ads: Still Wrong on the Stimulus- Michael Grunwald, Time
For the umpteenth time: Some of these companies will fail. That’s capitalism. That’s lending. That’s life. As one Obama aide told me: Some students who get Pell grants are going to end up drunks on the street. I’ve written about this before, and I’ll write about it again, but so far there have been fewer Solyndra-type failures than Congress expected.
Elizabeth Warren: I told Harvard about my heritage- MJ Lee, Politico
Elizabeth Warren admitted on Wednesday night for the first time that she told Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania of her Native American heritage — in contrast to her previous claim that she was unaware Harvard had listed her as a minority professor until recently…Warren, who is making a bid against Republican Sen. Scott Brown, has continued to maintain that her Native American heritage never helped her professionally.