Huffpost Politics

HUFFPOST HILL - Our One-Day-Too-Late Cain Item

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Herman Cain may have advocated a stronger foreign policy, but it turns out he surrendered to a German guy awful quick. Dan Quayle will endorse Mitt Romney (and you thought *freebasing* was exciting!). And the Tragically Ironic Things Gazette reports the Federal Aviation Administration administrator was arrested on drunk driving charges. We hear the Nothing Is Safe Bugle is trying to score an interview. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Monday, December 5th, 2011:

NEIN NEIN NEIN: 'WOMEN FOR HERMAN CAIN' IMAGE TAKEN DOWN BECAUSE OF GERMAN PHOTOG'S CONTRACT - On Friday, when the now defunct Herman Cain presidential campaign debuted its "Women For Herman Cain" section, we joke tweeted (jweeted?) that a reporter was probably seeking out the four enthusiastic stock photo models who appeared in the page's banner. The always hilarious and insightful @delrayser quickly found the original image and posted his findings. We had our own Max Rosenthal get in touch with the German stock photographer behind the image, Robert Kneschke. Kneschke had contacted the Cain campaign and had the chipper image removed. Here's Max's report, now tragically reduced to a HuffPost Hill blurb (Sorry dude, A1 is a harsh mistress!): "The short-lived 'Women For Cain' website caused confusion (on multiple levels) on Friday when its banner image was abruptly changed. The original image, a picture of four grinning models all giving the thumbs-up gesture, was replaced by an awkward blank spot (it now features a photograph of Cain and his wife). It turned out that the campaign, in one final misstep, had violated the photo's terms of usage. Robert Kneschke confirmed to HuffPost that the Cain campaign's use of the photo was, as he put it, 'a clear breach of the license agreement,' which banned the image from appearing in political endorsements. Kneschke said he had no opinion about the Republican presidential field, and that his concern was strictly legal. He did, however, add that 'if you run for president, you should know your legal terms.'" Amen.

"Beim letzten Model-Casting hatte ich wieder so eine Idee. Nachdem sich nacheinander eine Asiatin, eine Afrikanerin und eine Europaerin bei mir vorgestellt hatten, dachte ich mir, warum machste nicht mal wieder ein Gruppen-Shooting?"

DEMOCRATS CONTINUE PAYROLL TAX CUT PUSH - Mike McAuliff: "Senate Democrats offered their second plan to extend the payroll tax cut Monday, this time proposing a smaller tax on the wealthy to pay for the middle-class cut. Highlighting the political nature of the effort as well as the economic importance, Senate leaders released the bare bones of the plan in a coordinated push with President Barack Obama. A plan last week to boost the payroll tax cut from 2 percent now to 3.1 percent next year failed, with just one Republican senator signing on and Democrats losing three from their own caucus. The cut would have been paid for by levying a 3.25 percent surtax on income above $1 million -- a proposal toxic to the GOP, but designed to cast Republicans as friends of the rich. The payroll tax cut has saved the average household about $1,000 in 2011. It primarily helps the middle class because it targets the 6.2 percent payroll tax, which funds Social Security and applies only to the first $106,000 in income." [HuffPost]

HOYER AIDE MAKES STARTLING CAREER MOVE - HuffPost Hill is cresting that arc in its congressional reporting career where many of the staffers we've known have left for K Street and moved to the 9-digit zip code where people get their kids into the right elementary school. It's sad. Oh, and deeply troubling. Add Stacey Farnen Bernards to that list, a top (and talented) House aide who is taking her degree from the Steny Hoyer Academy for Lobbying and putting it to use at Honeywell, which does more than build weapons and lock union workers out of its uranium enrichment facility, we're sure. Godspeed, Stacey!

@mikeallen: AP: Former Vice President Dan Quayle is endorsing Mitt Romney--will appear together tomorrow in Paradise Valley, Ariz.

IT'S ALWAYS THE HOLIDAY SEASON FOR THE BORED LAZY OVERPAID BUREAUCRAT - 'Tis the season to be jolly and HuffPost Hill's own Bored Lazy Overpaid Bureaucrat (BLOB) loves to celebrate the holidays by kindling a fire with misspent taxpayer dollars and enjoying a cup of hot chocolate...on a Tuesday at noon. "After nearly three weeks of giving thanks, I headed into work today to water my dehydrated (but fortunately still living) plants. It's been so long since I've come to work that I forgot the password to my computer, which helped kill some time as I waited for the IT folks to save the day. I did some Internet research on a guy I met last night, took a short nap, and grabbed a bite to eat. I've been diligently working my way through a particularly tough level of Angry Birds (endless gratitude to [***NAME REDACTED TO PREVENT BLOB FROM BEING DONE IN BY HER OWN BORED LAZINESS***] for turning me onto this gem), and I'm getting ready to head out and meet someone for an afternoon cocktail as soon as I finish up another pointless and unproductive conference call. I hope everyone had a nice holiday break!!! Percentage of the day spent doing actual work: 20. Percentage of that work that could have been done by someone making less than half my salary: arguably 100. Likelihood of coming to work on Monday: very low." Thanks, BLOB!

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - The new payroll tax proposal from Senate Democrats would disqualify millionaires from unemployment insurance. Doing so would save money and might win Republican support, but it could also slowly erode the commonly-held notion that unemployment compensation is an insurance paid for with payroll premiums, like Social Security retirement benefits. Instead, people might start to consider it a welfare benefit, something for poor people, which would make the program more politically vulnerable. We didn't think of that. FDR did.

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PELOSI SAYS SHE HAS DIRT ON NEWT GINGRICH, GIVES NEW MEANING TO 'INTERNET ACCESS' - TPM: "Nancy Pelosi told Brian Beutler that she's got tons of dirt on Newt Gingrich from her time on the House ethics panel investigating him, and hinted that some of it could come out if Gingrich continues his presidential surge. Gingrich couldn't be happier with the news. 'I would like to thank Speaker Pelosi for what I regard as an early Christmas gift,' Gingrich told reporters in New York today. Gingrich said that if Pelosi does release information from the ethics committee, she's risking ethics charges of her own...Back in 1997, Pelosi was a member of an ethics inquiry into Gingrich that eventually led to him paying a $300,000 fine levied by a vote of the whole House. The ethics committee was chaired by Republicans, then in the majority in the House, and the GOP-led House voted for the fine 395-28. Early in the process, Gingrich was accused of violating tax law, an investigation that the ethics panel left to the IRS. That organization cleared Gingrich of breaking the law years later." [TPM]

@samsteinhp: Romney can have friendly convos during airline travel bit.ly/vhccF7

SO WHY DID CAIN SUSPEND HIS CAMPAIGN? - And will Cain's supporters get a coupon for a free medium pepperoni pizza because he failed to deliver? Hi-yoooo! WaPo: "Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain's announcement that he is suspending, rather than terminating, his campaign appears to give him greater flexibility in the months ahead to transfer leftover funds to a candidate or political committee of his choice...As of the end of the third fundraising quarter on Sep. 30, Cain's campaign had $1.3 million cash on hand and $675,000 in debts. In mid-November, Cain's campaign said that it had raised $9 million over six weeks, an amount that would have put him on track to eclipse the best quarterly fundraising totals of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (R) and Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R)." [WaPo]

AND THE AWARD FOR 'WILL IT MAKE YOU FEEL BETTER IF YOU TELL YOURSELF THAT?' GOES TO... - @FixRachel: Gingrich: Not participating in Missouri primary was "a conscious decision, not an oversight"

The New York Times has an attribution problem. We know. Erik Wemple: "To what lengths will the New York Times go to avoid crediting Politico? The paper's news account of Herman Cain's presidential campaign suspension provides at least four clues...Yet anyone who took an Internet vacation over the past 40 days and came upon the New York Times' story on Cain, which ran on Sunday's front page, might just conclude that the candidate's sexually driven unraveling was the product of wind patterns, or something cosmic." It's OK, Gray Lady, we didn't splash on too much Eau d'Lindsay Lohan Slideshow today and Politico went easy on the Eau d'Winning Le Morning. We won't get our stink on you if you get close. [WaPo]

We suggest you check out this Daily Caller piece titled, "Rand Paul prevents war with Russia." It's a gripping ticktock about the battle over health care offsets. That's a joke. It's an article about how Rand Paul prevented war with Russia. [Daily Caller]

WHY CAN'T THE PEOPLE IN CHARGE OF OUR AIRPLANES BE AWAKE AND SOBER FOR MORE THAN FIVE SECONDS? - Remember sleeping air traffic controller-gate? Remember how deeply that rattled you? Remember how you freaked out just *this* much more when your plane experienced turbulence because you couldn't NOT think of that horrible episode? Did you calm down by reminding yourself that someone was on top of it and such negligence would no longer be tolerated? We did! Now there's this: "Randy Babbitt, head of the Federal Aviation Administration, has been charged with driving while intoxciated, WUSA reports. City of Fairfax police say that the 65-year-old Babbitt, who lives in Reston, Va., was stopped after a police officer allegedly saw his car traveling on the wrong side of the road in a Washington, D.C., suburb. WUSA reports that Babbitt was taken to the Adult Detention Center and placed on a personal recognizance bond. Babbit took over as FAA administrator in June 2009." [USA Today]

IS THE BOTTOM OF A POLICE OFFICER'S STEEL-TOED BOOT IMPRINTED ON YOUR NECK? HERE'S WHY - Radly Balko: "Police militarization is now an ingrained part of American culture. SWAT teams are featured in countless cop reality shows, and wrong-door raids are the subject of 'The Simpsons' bits and search engine commercials. Tough-on-crime sheriffs now sport tanks and hardware more equipped for battle in a war zone than policing city streets. Seemingly benign agencies such as state alcohol control boards and the federal Department of Education can now enforce laws and regulations not with fines and clipboards, but with volatile raids by paramilitary police teams....Part of the trend can be attributed to the broader tough-on-crime and drug war policies pushed by politicians of both parties since at least the early 1980s, but part of the problem also lies with America's political culture. Public officials' decisions today to use force and the amount of force are as governed by political factors as by an honest assessment of the threat a suspect or group may pose. Over the years, both liberals and conservatives have periodically raised alarms over the government's increasing willingness to use disproportionately aggressive force. And over the years, both sides have tended to hush up when the force is applied by political allies, directed at political opponents, or is used to enforce the sorts of laws they favor." [HuffPost]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Adventures of misery bear, continued.

HEY PERSON READING THIS ON THEIR SMARTPHONE, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH YOUR LIFE? - "'In Limbo' begins with the story of Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa. His life is like a classic rags-to-riches tale scripted for a Hollywood film. He grew up in the small village of Palaco, Mexico...Quiñones- Hinojosa was determined to put food on the table for his family, so he did the only thing he could possibly think of: literally jumped over a fence between his native Mexico and the United States and became a farm worker in southern California...His journey then took him to University of California, Berkeley, and later Harvard Medical School. After 10 years, since first jumping over that fence into America, he became a U.S. citizen. Now, Dr. Alfredo Quiñones- Hinojosa is a respected brain surgeon who directs the Brain Tumor Program at John Hopkins Bayview Hospital." [NPR]

COMFORT FOOD
With @bradjshannon

- "50 Cats Straight Chillin' With Piles Of Cash" [http://bit.ly/vXjBdr]

- The most expensive car crash ever. [http://bit.ly/tvkYgv]

- Awesome skittles dance video. [http://bit.ly/vIKOQn]

- Hey, do you like art? Do you like people without pants? Then you'll absolutely love this photo of Paul Gauguin without pants. [http://huff.to/sEyYXp]

- Jedis playing the cello, Darth Vader playing the accordion, and everything else geeky in the world mashed into a glorious four minutes. [http://bit.ly/vVNo41]

- Monster slide is large, downward facing. [http://huff.to/s0hJ6Z]

- "The 5 Film Commenters You Meet on the Internet." [http://huff.to/sIi5iS]

TWITTERAMA

@ktumulty: Dan Quayle to endorse Mitt Romeny.

@KagroX: Gingrich: Isn't the REAL crime here the fact that you remembered my crime?

@GroverNorquist: Mom always said syphilis....RT @sleepyminorcan: @GroverNorquist You're like gonorrhea.

ON TAP
By @tylerkingkade

TONIGHT

5:00pm: John Boehner lights the Capitol Christmas tree. We had no idea there was so much swag for this tree, or that it has its own song. [West Lawn, US Capitol]

5:00pm - 7:00pm: Mmmmm, wine and cheese tasting. Kathy Castor of Florida will be raising money at Bistro Bis. [15 E Street NW]

5:30pm - 7:30pm: Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee does Hill County BBQ. [410 7th Street NW]

TOMORROW

8:00am - 9:00am: If you give Susan Davis (D-Calif.) a thousand bucks, she'll cook you a made-to-order omelet at her house. [613 E Street SE]

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Filed by Eliot Nelson
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