January 3, 2016

Sunday School 1/3/16

Sunday School posts provide an overview of what some of the talking heads were talking about on the Sunday news shows.

On Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace had Jersey Boy Chris Christie and Former Florida Governor Jeb! Bush. Christie was pressed on his criticism of Jeb!'s protege Marco Rubio never making it to Washington, even to vote against things he thinks are important, particularly calling out the spending bill that was just passed. Christie himself seems to have misplaced his GPS, as he's never in Jersey anymore, having basically moved to New Hampshire.  The difference between what he does and what Rubio does? Christie never stops working for the people of New Jersey.  Honest, he said so.

Bush, for his part, was asked (again) to explain why he's doing so poorly in the polls. Unlike Mike Huckabee, who was asked this question last year, Bush babbled about connecting with voter in the early states and being on the ballot in all 50 states.  When pressed  by Wallace, he noted that he made adjustments in his campaign, because that's how leaders lead.

Dana Bash was sitting in for Jake Tapper on CNN's State of the Union, where the guests were Republican Carly Fiorina and Democrat Bernie Sanders. Fiorina said a lot of stuff but not much of it was substantive or responsive to the questions. For example, when specifically asked what she would do about the escalating situation between Saudi Arabia and Iran, first she said our main goal was to help calm things down, and then said that as president she would provide leadership, strength and resolve. Not sure how the either of those statements impact the situation; Bash didn't press the issue. On a more important issue, her 'cursing' of the Iowa Hawkeyes in the Rose Bowl with her tweet that she was rooting against Stanford, her alma mater: tongue in cheek, it was, she said. Pandering, the rest of the universe said.

Sanders was asked about guns and whether President Obama's apparent plan for some kind of executive order, most likely on universal background checks, is the right thing to do. It almost has to be, Sanders noted, because Republicans in Congress won't do anything in a bipartisan manner on something that the vast majority of Americans support. On taxes, he was pressed for a 'tax plan' and noted that he's already offered a number of plans on taxes, including insanely rich people and corporations paying their fare share, increasing the salary limit for Social Security contributions, and others, and that more would be coming out before the Iowa vote. On calls from other candidates that Bill Clinton's sex life should be fair game, he noted that we have more important things to worry about. Interestingly, he also pointed out that in his last race in Vermont, he garnered 25% of Republican votes, so his move to attract Trump supporters makes perfect sense.

Finally, over on NBC's Meet the Press, Chuck Todd had former Ohio Governor John Kasich and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul. Kasich spent most of his time trying to convince Todd that he's actually ahead of Chris Christie, although Todd wasn't really having much of that  More interesting, by far was Rand Paul and his 'New Year's resolutions' which included spending less time voting in the Senate, so that Rubio and Cruz wouldn't look quite so bad, and giving Cruz more time to steal Paul's policy positions.

Todd also asked Paul if he was 'frustrated' with the campaign and maybe with the attention given to his party's front-runner (the one I try very hard not to mention), or whether it was something else. Paul schooled Todd on polls, how they're frequently wrong, and how the media is covering the guy at the top based on polls, or is perhaps not quite as even coverage of all candidates, "just saying."

Good for him.