January 24: Top 8 Moments From Sunday Talk
Robert Gibbs spins Scott Brown’s win in Obama’s favor, Mitch McConnell gives Ben Bernanke a thumbs up, and guess who thinks Rahm Emanuel is toast? That and more in our Sunday roundup.
Robert Gibbs: A Vote for Scott Brown Was Not a Vote Against Obama
The president may have thrown his support behind Democratic candidate Martha Coakley in the Massachusetts election, but her defeat does not mean that voters have had enough with Obama’s current policies, at least according to Press Secretary Robert Gibbs. In an interview with Fox News Sunday (Gasp! An Obama official on Fox? This must be serious.), Gibbs repeatedly cites a Washington Post poll to argue that Massachusetts actually voted Brown (who campaigned against the Obama agenda) because they support Obama. Confused?
Jim DeMint: I Didn't Want Reform to Be Obama’s ‘Waterloo’
Sen. Jim DeMint made headlines a few months ago for declaring that health-care reform would be Obama’s “Waterloo,” and if they’re “able to stop” him, it will break him. On ABC’s This Week, host Terry Moran questioned whether this sort of language about breaking the president is appropriate. DeMint backpedaled—a little—on his comment, saying that although he said it, he didn’t necessarily want it to happen.
John McLaughlin Invokes Rare, ‘Forced Prediction’ Rule
What exactly is going on here? The McLaughlin Group, famed for its pundit shouting matches long before Fox News and MSNBC built a business of them, shows a rare moment of unanimity at the behest of John McLaughlin’s “forced prediction.” The question? Whether Rahm Emanuel will keep his job.
Orrin Hatch: Push Reset Button on Reform
Sen. Orrin Hatch was one of several prominent Republicans on the Sunday shows, including Mitch McConnell and John McCain, who think President Obama needs to start over on health reform. On State of the Union, Hatch says there really hasn’t been much bipartisanship in the process, and in fact, he doesn’t know of a single Republican who is actually against health-care reform.
Haiti’s Most Underused Resource: Its People
Kudos to Zbigniew Brzezinski for advancing the discussion on Haiti. Beyond the calls for immediate humanitarian aid, there has been a secondary debate on the beleaguered country: Should it receive billions of dollars in assistance (as Jeffrey Sachs and others have argued) or is giving money beyond what’s needed for emergencies simply a waste (as Bret Stephens recently wrote)? Brzezinski makes the case for a temporary international government, and points out that the people of Haiti have no culture obstacles to advancement—just look at how they thrive in the stable countries to which many have emigrated.
David Axelrod on Obama’s Past Year: No Regrets
Just days before President Obama makes his State of the Union address, and a year after being sworn into office, and everyone's focusing on what the president did or didn't do. The administration had several top advisers out in full force to pump out the president’s message and defend his work thus far in the term. On This Week, White House adviser David Axelrod says if he could go back in time, he wouldn't have done anything differently.
Mitch McConnell: Ben Bernanke Will Be Confirmed
If you’re hanging on the edge of your seat looking for some sign that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will win a second term, all signs pointed to yes on Sunday. While the White House reps expressed confidence in a win, you also had Republican leader Mitch McConnell predicting Bernanke will be confirmed with bipartisan support in the Senate. But what does he personally think of Bernanke? That was a bit more difficult for Meet the Press’ David Gregory to get out of him.
‘Enormous Change’ You Can Believe in? Valerie Jarrett Says Yes, We Can.
President Obama has been getting a lot of heat lately on some of his campaign promises, not the least of which is health-care reform that appears to be stuck in limbo. And then there’s the economy, which White House adviser Valerie Jarrett boasts that the administration has turned around. Here’s Jarrett on Meet the Press elaborating on some of the “enormous change” we have seen over the past year, which not everyone may agree with—including her fellow guest, Senae Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who thinks “we haven't made much progress.”
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