Sacred vs. Profane

Campaign operatives love nothing better than a sharp, highly favorable contrast between their candidate and the opposition—and President Obama’s people had to be chest-bumping and high-fiving over the one they got today. At this morning’s National Prayer Breakfast, one day after Mitt Romney disastrously said he’s “not concerned about the very poor,” Obama delivered a heartfelt homily on the religious imperative behind the rich helping the poor: “I think to myself, if I’m willing to give something up as somebody who’s been extraordinarily blessed, and give up some of the tax breaks that I enjoy, I actually think that’s going to make economic sense. But for me as a Christian, it also coincides with Jesus’s teaching that 'for unto whom much is given, much shall be required.’” And then, this afternoon in Las Vegas—well, the Obamians couldn’t have scripted it any better. Their likely Republican opponent found himself onstage with the very embodiment of greed and gluttony, Donald Trump, who declared it was “my honor, real honor, to endorse Mitt Romney.” Romney responded by praising Mr. You’re Fired for "an extraordinary ability to understand how our economy works and to create jobs.” The fact that Trump endorsed Romney rather than Newt Gingrich might have counted as a small victory for the former Massachusetts governor, but this deal with the devil could not have been more spectacularly ill-timed. 


So They Say

"There are some things that you just can't imagine in your life. This is one of them."
Mitt Romney, accepting Trump’s endorsement in Vegas

Daily Meme: Romney’s Very Poor Gaffe

  • Jon Stewart: “It’s like a doctor going, ‘I’m not concerned about the very healthy, because they’re doing fine, or the very sick because, you know, morphine.’” 
  • Rick Santorum: “I think it shows a callousness on the part of Governor Romney.”
  • Jonah Goldberg: “Great politicians on the morning after a big win don’t force their supporters to go around defending the candidate from the charge that he doesn’t care about the poor. They just don’t.”  
  • Erick Erickson: He “played straight into the liberal caricature that Republicans don’t have hearts.”
  • Charles Krauthammer: “It strengthens the stereotype of Romney as the patrician who's only aware of the poor as people who clean the streets and wash his car." 
  • Jonathan Cohn: This “Let them eat cake” moment was even worse than it sounded.

What We're Writing

  • Patrick Caldwell talks with small donors to the huge Romney super PACS.
  • Jamelle Bouie marvels at how Republicans have bought Romney’s health-care pander. 

What We're Reading

  • Romney is worth more than the last eight presidents combined—times two
  • Karl Rove throws his magical spin dust on the Romney campaign
  • Jonathan Chait lays out Ron Paul's long game (hint: he's willing to trade his supporters to Romney). 
  • Trump’s for Romney, Adelson’s for Gingrich, Angle’s for Santorum: The Nevada caucus is shaping up as a Vegas-style circus
  • Nevada’s safety net is the nation’s stingiest
  • Are Republicans resegregating Southern politics? 
  • Romney leads Obama in Wall Street money. 

Poll of the Day

The Las Vegas Review-Journal finds Romney leading by 20 percentage points among likely GOP voters in the state’s Saturday caucus. But Gingrich has strong Tea Party support. 


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