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"I'm going to try something different this year. I'm going to try to stay out of this one."
-- Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), in an interview on Fox News Sunday, saying he won't endorse a presidential candidate.
The New York Times reviews Eisenhower in War and Peace noting author Jean Edward Smith makes the "startling claim" that apart from Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower was "the most successful president of the 20th century."
Smith carefully traces Eisenhower's "preparation for the presidency, and that's what this biography is really about. (Only a quarter of the book is devoted to the White House years and beyond.) From it, Eisenhower's own views on success in leadership emerge reasonably clearly. To reduce them to the length of a tweet -- an exercise my students recommend, and which Ike might well have approved -- they amount to achieving one's ends without corrupting them."
"Ends, Eisenhower knew, are potentially infinite. Means can never be. Therefore the task of leaders -- whether in the presidency or anywhere else -- is to reconcile that contradiction: to deploy means in such a way as to avoid doing too little, which risks defeat, but also too much, which risks exhaustion. Failure can come either way."
An informal BuzzFeed survey of more than half of the Republican State Chairmen and national committee people at the GOP meetings in Arizona this weekend finds that two-thirds said they believe Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) is the most-likely and best-qualified running-mate for Mitt Romney.
Said one: "He's from Ohio, and we need to win Ohio, it's that simple."
Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, often mentioned as a candidate for vice president — or maybe even for president someday – had a snappy retort when asked Sunday about his political ambitions.
“The biggest trap I have seen in politics is when someone goes into a position with the idea of creating a platform to run for something else, it almost always ends up bad.” Mr. Rubio told Candy Crowley on CNN’s “State of The Union.” “So I deliberately don’t think about what specific things this will lead to.”
Pressed further about all the talk whether there might be a President Rubio someday, the 40-year-old freshman senator joked, “Maybe they mean of a condominium association. There’s real power there.”
He also sidestepped the question of whether he would make a good vice-presidential candidate for presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
“He has folks that he has hired and has asked to go through a vice presidential process,” Mr. Rubio said. “The last thing that he needs are those of us in the peanut gallery to be saying what we would or would not do… I know Mitt Romney is going to make a good choice for vice president. And I know Mitt Romney is going to make a great president.”
Republicans have hoped that Mr. Rubio, a Cuban American, would help Mr. Romney win Florida, and help the party’s prospects with Hispanic voters. However, a PPP poll released earlier this month showed a Rubio pick actually hurt Mr. Romney in Florida, with his support dropping by two percentage points against President Barack Obama.
President Obama carried 57% of the Hispanic vote in Florida in 2008, when he ran against Sen. John McCain (R. Ariz.). But Mr. Rubio said he believed Mr. Romney would mount a better showing.
“You have to work on it,” Mr. Rubio said. “Americans of Hispanic descent, especially in Florida, are swing voters…they’re willing to vote by Republicans or Democrats on an election by election basis. The No. 1 issue, in the Hispanic community, let’s be clear is economic empowerment.”
Asked about whether Mr. Romney’s aggressive stance against illegal immigration would hurt him with Hispanic voters, Mr. Rubio pushed back: “This notion that somehow, in order to appeal to Hispanic voters, you have to support illegal immigration, is just not true,” he said.
Follow Alan Zibel on Twitter @AlanZibel
Mitt Romney's top aides "plan to move quickly after the primaries on Tuesday to integrate the campaign's growing staff with the Republican National Committee, in an effort to avoid logistical stumbles that have hampered past nominees," the New York Times reports.
"Romney has been careful not to push the committee into a formal support role while two of his rivals -- Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul -- continue campaigning for the nomination. But aides to Mr. Romney expect that dynamic to change after Tuesday, when he is expected to win all five of the primaries, including those in New York and Pennsylvania."
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) predicted he won't be recalled from office in June, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Said Walker: "I think when we win, it will not only reaffirm what we did. It will send a powerful message to every politician...in our state and even in our city governments who are trying to take on the tough issues and do the right thing. It will send a powerful, powerful message that you can stick your neck out, you can make the tough choices and there will be voters helping you along the way."
Here's a potential problem for President Obama's re-election bid: "New state laws designed to fight voter fraud could reduce the number of Americans signing up to vote in this year's presidential election by hundreds of thousands," Reuters reports.
"Voting laws passed by Republican-led legislatures in a dozen states during the past year have sharply restricted voter-registration drives that typically target young, low-income, African-American and Hispanic voters -- groups that have backed the Democratic president by wide margins."
First Independent Legislator in Arizona Is Appointed, Not Elected
Richard Winger reports on the unusual circumstances under which Arizona gained its first independent state legislature–not by election, but by resigning and appointment.
This link says the candidates have been narrowed to three options by the County Commission.
The county commission will appoint the member on Monday, April 23rd, 2012.
A new poll put out by Public Policy Polling, widely respected for its accuracy, has placed Gary Johnson at 6%. This article has some very biased commentary.
The numbers in the polling show that Johnson should be angling to capture very liberal voters, as well as independents.
The latest report on registration by party in California is out and the winners are: Independents, unqualified parties, the Constitution Party of California, the Peace & Freedom Party, and the American Independent Party. All of those groups made gains, however small. The Democratic Party, Republican Party, Libertarian Party, Green Party, and Americans Elect all declined.
Thanks to Richard Winger for the analysis.
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