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07.29.12

Mitt Romney, Dick Cheney, Justice Scalia, and more Sunday Talk.

Mitt Romney gets called a wimp, Dick Cheney bashes Sarah Palin, Justice Scalia says gun-control laws could be stricter, and more in our Sunday Talk roundup.

Romney the Wimp?

In the cover story for this week’s Newsweek, “The Wimp Factor,” columnist Michael Tomasky wonders (very loudly) whether Mitt is “too insecure to be president.” And who better to ask than the man himself? On Face the Nation Sunday, CBS correspondent Jan Crawford asked the candidate for his response—and whether he’d ever been called a “wimp” before. Forcing a smile, Romney defiantly said “they tried that on George Herbert Walker Bush. He was a pretty great president and anything but.”

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Dick Cheney: Palin Veep Pick ‘A Mistake’

Dick Cheney may have a new heart, but he’s still as ruthless as ever. In his first interview since his transplant in March, the former vice president told ABC’s Jonathan Karl that picking Sarah Palin as John McCain’s running mate was a mistake. “I like Gov. Palin. I’ve met her. I know her. She’s an attractive candidate,” Cheney said. “But based on her background, she had only been governor for, what, two years? I don’t think she passed that test … of being ready to take over. And I think that was a mistake.”

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Scalia: Gun Control Is on the Table

Following last week’s Colorado movie theater massacre, archconservative Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia delivered this shocker: our current gun-control laws could, technically, be stricter, according to the Second Amendment. On Fox News Sunday, Scalia told Chris Matthews that “yes, there are some limitations that can be imposed,” based on his interpretation of the 1791 ruling. The remark isn’t entirely out of line for Scalia, however, as his majority decision in District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) left the door open for further limitations on gun ownership.

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Gibbs: Romney ‘Embarrassed’ Himself in London

On This Week, senior Obama adviser Robert Gibbs said that Mitt Romney “embarrassed” himself in London—while senior Romney adviser Kevin Madden tried to play down the incident. “A YouTube moment is not going to make or break this election,” Madden told guest host Matthew Dowd. From there, the two advisers squabbled, cutting each other off repeatedly. Gibbs got this far into his almost-attack: “If you can’t handle smiling and talking about the Olympics…” Finish the quotation?

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Ayotte: ‘Obama Has Made Us Weaker’

The Republican senator from New Hampshire and long shot to be Mitt Romney’s veep pick told Candy Crowley on State of the Union that Obama “outsourced leadership” when dealing with Syria, and has made the United States “weaker” while President. “We are not stronger,” Ayotte said, pointing to Obama’s attempts to work through the United Nations to end the Syrian massacres. The Armed Services Committee member did, however, give the president credit for killing Osama bin Laden and dramatically increasing American drone attacks—but added that he was “dragged to the table” to impose sanctions on Iran in 2009.

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Debbie Wasserman Schultz on Romney's 'Wimp' Factor

On Face the Nation, DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz addressed the question posed by this week's Newsweek cover story: is Mitt Romney a wimp?? While the congresswoman declined to definitively comment on the relative cowardice of the Republican candidate, she did mention a trait he surely lacked: a commitment to transparency, slamming Romney for his “penchant for secrecy,” as well as his inconsistent stance on Iran and his history of outsourcing jobs.

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Do the Olympics Turn Journalists into Spokespeople?

Tired of hearing “sob stories” about Olympic athletes on nightly news, Reliable Sources’s Howard Kurtz posed a question to sportswriter Frank Deford: are the Olympic puff pieces flooding NBC news programs simply more commercials for the games themselves? Kurtz and Deford discussed whether NBC's costly investment in the events has led its correspondents to become complicit in promoting them.

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