For the second time, Rick Perry forgot which three agencies he wants to abolish -- luckily for him, he'll probably forget to make the mistake a third time. Newt Gingrich concluded, after a long period of soul-searching and careful study of the proletariat, that he is not Emma Goldman reborn. And someone published a children's book about Mitt Romney. Surprisingly, it's not called "The Little Engine That Could (Be Constructed For Half As Much In Malaysia And By Half As Many People According To A Proprietary Bain Analysis)." This is HUFFPOST HILL for Friday, January 13th, 2012:
WARREN'S FIRST MONEY BOMB - Does Obama winning in 2012 hurt or help Elizabeth Warren's chances of winning the White House in 2016? Shit, we're getting ahead of ourselves again. Anyway, here's a scoop on her first money bomb for her lowly Senate campaign: "Elizabeth Warren is looking to use the momentum from her eye-popping fourth quarter fundraising haul to launch her first money bomb. The event -- a concerted effort to raise a ton of cash from small donors all in one day, first popularized by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) -- will be held at elizabethwarrenmoneybomb.com on Thursday, Jan. 19, the two-year anniversary of Sen. Scott Brown's (R-Mass.) victory over Martha Coakley. Brown is marking the occasion by holding a major rally to launch his reelection campaign. The Republican incumbent took in $3.2 million last quarter, which paled next to Warren's $5.7 million, but the senator has roughly twice as much cash on hand -- nearly $13 million to a bit over $6 million." [http://huff.to/wVI1Q8]
Warren phoned Scott Brown to ask for a third-party-spending truce. Not wanting to see her naked and all, Brown sent her to voicemail.
FOR SOME REASON, WE MADE A VIDEO OF MITT ROMNEY SINGING A DUET WITH JULIE ANDREWS - Along with the brilliant Ben Craw, HuffPost Hill published this performance of Mitt Romney crooning "My Favorite Things" with Julie Andrews. We're not sure why. Please, just watch it. Or don't. Your call. [HuffPost]
PARANOID SELF-LOATHING GOP LOBBYIST HATES NNNEEERRDDDSSS!!!! - Our favorite Paranoid Self-Loathing GOP Lobbyist, writing from up in the tree house where he's wearing a spaghetti strainer on his head, is sick and tired of scrawny Jon Huntsman prancing around like he owns the place. "The sooner the mainstream media starts understanding that Huntsman is the guy we all want to give a wedgie, the better job it'll do for its readers," PSLGOPL said in an email. Thanks, PSLGOPL! Please don't take our lunch money!
AMERICANS ELECT: WILL SOMEONE PLEASE TAKE OUR MONEY?! - The Super PAC with $22 million in the bank can't find anybody to run on its presidential line. Ken Vogel: "A new group that hopes to tap into a rising appetite for a third-party presidential challenger has discovered that $30 million in secret cash can buy ballot access and attention, but not necessarily a dream candidate. The group, Americans Elect, failed to generate interest in possible campaigns from Sens. Joe Lieberman and Lamar Alexander, and its intensive outreach to a host of other prospective candidates, including former Nebraska Sens. Chuck Hagel and Bob Kerrey, hasn't yielded much public enthusiasm for its efforts. [Politico]
DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce doesn't feel like waiting for the South Carolina General Assembly to get tough on the unemployed. AP: "A state with chronically high unemployment is making it tougher for the jobless to draw benefits by trying to force people to take lower-wage jobs and making it easier for laid-off workers to be declared ineligible. New policies at South Carolina's Department of Employment and Workforce require people to accept job offers that pay incrementally less than their previous wages -- eventually leading to minimum wage -- and reducing the number of weeks someone let go for misconduct can receive benefits." [AP]
WONK BLOGGERS RUINING AMERICA - Mike Elk: "At a time when many seasoned reporters are being laid off by publications -- like four veteran writers and editors who were laid off in August a few months before [Matt] Yglesias was hired at Slate -- mainstream news publications are turning to wonky bloggers like Ygelsias and fellow Brat Packer Ezra Klein (of The Washington Post) to turn out massive amounts of content and generate traffic. These bloggers can turn out 6-12 posts a day while traditional reporters, who take the time to go out in the field and interview people affected by the subject of their stories, can typically only turn out 3-4 stories a week. The result is that workers' voices are often excluded in the rush to produce quick blog content. [In These Times]
HUFFPOST HICCUP: We referred yesterday to Xavier Becerra's "principle residence." Thank you to the dozens of people who let us know.
Don't be bashful: Send tips/stories/photos/events/fundraisers/job movement/juicy miscellanea to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter - @HuffPostHill
OBAMA: HEY GUYS, I CAN CUT STUFF TOO - President Obama wants Congress to let him collapse six government agencies into one, basically so he can show off his ability to list more than twice as many things as Rick Perry. From the AP: "He is attempting to directly counter Republican arguments that he has presided over the kind of government regulation, spending and debt that can undermine the economy -- a dominant theme of the emerging presidential campaign." [AP]
@jbendery Bill Daley, in front row of today's WH press conf, not looking so... excited. (Getty photo) pic.twitter.com/pkiREP0h
RICK PERRY STILL HAS DIFFICULTY ENUMERATING STUFF - There comes a time in every man's life when he is called upon to remember three things and, at various points thereafter, recite those three things. At this, Rick Perry failed...again. Asked by a Savannah-area (re: South Carolina) radio host which federal agencies he'd like to cut, Perry mentioned three things, but not the correct three things. "Three right off the bat, you know, commerce, interior and energy are three that you think," he said, neglecting the Department of Education, one of his original three, and adding the Department of the Interior, which was not. Look out, endangered animals, publicly-held estuaries and Ken Salazar's bolo ties: Rick Perry is coming for your shit! Host Bill Edwards later asked about the Department of Education, the agency Perry left out. Perry handled it like a champ. "One size fits all doesn't work. Well maybe it does in gym socks but it sure doesn't in how we educate our children." Boom! [ABC News]
The best part is what Perry's spokesman, Mark Miner, had to say about his boss' trouble with single-digit counting: "It shouldn't be surprising the governor is talking about another federal agency that needs to be looked at and cut."
BURYING THE LEDE - The LA Times waited until the last paragraph to say that Perry tried during an event to call on a mannequin that had its hand raised. It was a joke, unfortunately. [LA Times, Twitter ]
GINGRICH REVERTS TO TIME-TESTED 'BE A GIGANTIC SOURPUSS' STRATEGY AFTER 'BE A POPULIST SPOKESPERSON' STRATEGY BACKFIRES - It was bound to happen. After several weeks of portraying himself as a class warrior combating America's vampire squids, Newt Gingrich is suddenly renouncing his proletariat-centric approach. Put another way, Newt Gingrich turned the key, flipped open the protective plastic case and hit the big red "REFUDIATE" button. "This week, fact check organizations like The Washington Post and Politifact have ranked advertisements produced by Super-PACs supporting Governor Romney and myself as containing enormous inaccuracies," he said in an email statement. "I am calling for the [Very pro-Gingrich] Winning Our Future Super-PAC supporting me to either edit its 'King of Bain' advertisement and movie to remove its inaccuracies, or to pull it off the air and off the internet entirely." The Washington Post is our favorite "fact check organization," too! #truthvigilantes [TPM]
Now no one will want to watch 'King of Bain!' How selfless of you, Newt!
YES WE ALL CAN - The 2008 Romney camp considered using "Yes We Can" as a slogan before then-Senator Obama's campaign adopted it, according to The Real Romney (soon to be released). The idea was to counteract a likely message by opponents of Romney as a flip-flopper by painting him as forward-looking and change-minded. Unclear how much they kicked themselves when they saw how it worked for Obama. [HuffPost's Max Rosenthal]
Romney and co. also realized that voters might not appreciate his years of having subordinates go to struggling companies and telling the managers who to hand the severance folders to. Sam Stein: "The underlying thesis of "The Real Romney" is the most important part of the book: Despite pitching himself as someone who could bring CEO-like leadership and free-market-like efficiencies to politics, Romney exhibited a style ill-suited for the campaign trail, the authors report. The result was a decision-making process that was too slow and plodding for the fast-paced world of politics." [HuffPost]
Jon Huntsman's staffers has a ticket to ride ... to a place that isn't the Huntsman campaign. BuzzFeed (yep): "Days after his third place finish in New Hampshire, some Huntsman for President staffers have already left the campaign, while others tell BuzzFeed they wish the former Utah governor would drop out so they could join Mitt Romney's team. One top volunteer told BuzzFeed that he was shocked Huntsman didn't drop out on Tuesday. 'I was hoping he would. I don't want to be disloyal or anything, but he doesn't have a chance anymore. Once he quits, then I can go work for a winning campaign.' A current staffer echoed those sentiments, saying Huntsman should have gotten out after New Hampshire to allow those who've worked for him to find another job. 'We're not going to quit, but we don't really want to keep going either.' According to one former staffer, 'many New Hampshire-focused staffers are no longer with the campaign,' though he said that was always the campaign's plan." [BuzzFeed]
MISS BACHMANN? - The Des Moines Register's Jennifer Jacobs breaks down what the hell happened, other than, as reported in The Onion, that she was discriminated against "as an insane woman." (The story does say aides believe sexism played a part in her downfall.) Number 1: The campaign forgot to follow up with 6,000 Iowans who said during the straw poll that they would support her. Number 9: She was often late to her own events, sometimes to allow crowds to grow. [Des Moines Register]
GINGRICH GETS ENDORSEMENT FROM A DEAD MAN - At least according to Left Behind author Tim LaHaye, who said during his endorsement of Gingrich that the late Rev. Jerry Faldwell would have endorsed him too. Jon Ward: "The former House speaker was endorsed by evangelical author and pastor Tim LaHaye, who is best-known for writing a series of books called the "Left Behind" series, an apocalyptic vision of what some Christians believe will happen when true believers in Jesus Christ experience the 'rapture' to heaven and nonbelievers are left behind for a period of 'tribulation.'" [HuffPost]
BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Sock-catching dog collapses, overwhelmed by accomplishment.
"Hey, Mitt! Dogs don't go there!" is our new favorite children's book (Our old favorite was "Gila Monsters Meet You At the Airport )." In case you need further convincing, our favorite moment is when the dog thinks "Hey Mitt! That's a real dick move" in a thought bubble.
- Words With Friends helps save a life. [http://bit.ly/zuHgYi]
- Hummingbirds are freaking ridiculous. [http://bit.ly/yHQwAF]
- Pop music ruined: 20 casualties of consumerism. [http://bit.ly/xg7TfH]
- Pop music adapted: Jimmy Fallon as "Tebowie." [http://bit.ly/zFy7Wn]
- Pop music mocked: 2012 Coachella "lineup." [http://bit.ly/z2Qykh]
- Here's a 15-minute documentary from 1970 on publishing the San Jose Mercury News. [http://bit.ly/zXl2mr]
- This Week In Creepy Robots watches for signs of the (inevitable) robot uprising. [twicr.tumblr.com]
- Ted Williams, formerly-homeless man with great radio voice, reflects on one year off the street. [http://bit.ly/xqVh0S]
@GrahamDavidA: Step 1: acquire sense of humor. Step 2: Stop sucking RT @HuffingtonPost: This CNN host wants to be the next Jon Stewart huff.to/z4OSt8
@delrayser: To be fair, most of Rick Perry's supporters are dummies.
@wise_kaplan: Your secret is safe with me. Unless I'm standing at a party next to somebody and have run out of things to say.
6:30 - 8:30 pm Saturday. - Liberal media elite + Georgetown cocktail party set = Sally Bedell-Smith's book party for her new biography of Queen Elizabeth II. [private residence]
Sat/Sun - Saxby Chambliss hosts his annual golf getaway weekend in sunny Palm Beach, where he shacks up at the ultra-luxury Breakers Hotel and pretends to ignore the 9.9% unemployment back home in Georgia. [Palm Beach, Florida]
Sat/Sun - Golf with Saxby Chambliss not your cup of tea? How about goose hunting with Collin Peterson? The Minnesota Dem flies south for the winter weekend to shoot Texas-sized geese. [Eagle Lake, Texas]
Sat/Sun - Sen. Mike Crapo's SkiFestin Sun Valley rounds out the trio of millionaires' pastimes your tax dollars are paying for this weekend. Cha-ching! [Sun Valley, Idaho]
2:00 - 4:00 pm Monday - The annual King in our Midst concert at the National Cathedral has gospel choirs, hip-hop acts and dancers. Rumor mill says it might also have POTUS. [bring a children's book or canned food to donate, 3101 Wisconsin Ave, NW]
02:00 pm Monday - For a more awkward MLK day, how about former Sen. George Allen (R-Va.) hosting a Day of Service for the NoVa Urban League? Only co-host Alma Powell saves this event from being reeeally weird. [Freedom House Slave Museum, 1315 Duke Street, Alexandria, Va.]
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