08/15/2012 04:52 pm ET Updated Oct 15, 2012

HUFFPOST HILL - Putting Y'All Back In Chains

Devo cut a track about Seamus Romney, but that untitled David Byrne/Rafalca project you've heard so much about probably won't see "the light of day." Mitt Romney's selection of what amounts to a non-confirmable OMB staffer with nice hair has not seriously changed the presidential race, a stunning poll reveals. And another survey finds unlikely and unregistered voters strongly favor President Obama, though we suspect Mitt Romney could win them over by guaranteeing production of a few more Transformer sequels. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, August 15th, 2012:

POLL: NO RYAN BOUNCE FOR ROMNEY - Despite Paul Ryan's unprecedented ability to smile in any given location, refer to that location's sports team AND glancingly familiarize himself with the contents of books that contain charts, Mitt Romney has not rocketed past President Obama in the polls. A new gallup survey finds the race mostly unchanged. Gallup: "The first four days of Gallup Daily tracking after Romney's announcement show 47% of registered voters saying they would vote for Romney and 45% for Barack Obama if the election were held today. The four days prior showed Romney at 46% and Obama at 45%... The lack of an immediate increase for Romney is consistent with Sunday's USA Today/Gallup poll that found a generally tepid reaction to the Ryan pick, especially in comparison to past vice-presidential choices." [Gallup]

Paul Ryan visited pilgrimaged to Sheldon Adelson last night. Ryan knelt down on a shiny black circle that lit up and was commanded to turn the son of Skywalker to the dark side also met with a number of Adelson's hyper-wealthy acquaintances. Times: "[S]omewhat surprisingly, [Adelson's] pet cause of Israel was not part of the conversation, according to an attendee. Mr. Adelson, who has pledged up to $100 million to defeat President Obama, invited about three dozen wealthy potential donors to a meeting with Mr. Ryan in a luxury suite with a guarded elevator at his Venetian hotel here on Tuesday evening." [NYT]

Senate Democrats are not only going to frame Ryan as a fiscal extremist... but a bad one, to boot. TPM: "In a memo his office provided to TPM, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) calls on Democrats to puncture the central Romney campaign narrative that the Republican ticket is serious about tackling the nation's greatest fiscal challenges. The document reflects Democrats' longstanding frustrations with the credibility Ryan has among Washington centrists as a sincere deficit hawk." [TPM]

THE NEXT FOOD STAMP FREAKOUT? The Heritage Foundation has discovered another example of President Obama helping poor people slide into lives of sinful dependency, this time by waiving food stamp time limits for able-bodied adults unable to find jobs. "The number of able-bodied adults without children on food stamps has doubled, increasing from 1.7 million people in 2009 to 3.9 million in 2010 and costing taxpayers an extra $400 million per year," Heritage says. "The future for these needy families just got bleaker." If only Americans would just get back to work already, America's future would be so much brighter. [Heritage Foundation]

PARANOID SELF-LOATHING GOP LOBBYIST DOESN'T LIKE HIS BEER LACED WITH MORMON-BAITING - HuffPost Hill's Paranoid Self-Loathing GOP Lobbyist thinks there's something skunked about the news that President Obama travels with beer brewed at the White House and buys beer for supporters at state fairs. "Obama is handing out white house brand beers and chugging with swing state voters all over the place, because Romney doesn't drink, right?" writes PSLGOPL, who is irreligious because ACORN is the only all-knowing omnipresent being he can handle. "If that's true, Axelrod is truly an evil genius." Thanks, PSLGOPL!

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - A middle-aged graphic designer in Kansas has the latest in our ongoing series PASTED: The Emails of the Jobless. She wrote that she lost her job in November and fears her age, 55, is an obstacle to finding work. "Many of the companies where I used to freelance are long gone -- their budgets cut to bare bones or moved to a more favorable location," she wrote. "I've started over many times in my life. New employment usually means a pay cut and a waiting period for vacations and retirement accounts. After time, I've found, things do get better. I fear this time may be the exception. It's hard to prepare for retirement on unemployment or beginning a new career. Odds are I'll be working until death retires me." [Hang in there!]

Don't be bashful: Send tips/stories/photos/events/fundraisers/job movement/juicy miscellanea to huffposthill@huffingtonpost.com. Follow us on Twitter - @HuffPostHill

ROMNEY: I'M COMING FOR YOU, 'ANTIQUES ROADSHOW' - In an interview with Fortune, Mitt Romney outlined some of the cuts he'd make to get the country's finances in order and they're basically a series of cuts to annoy residences of the Upper West Side and Brookline, Mass... also poor people. Sam Stein: "Romney identified subsidies for Amtrak, PBS, the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities as things he would eliminate. The government spends $444 million a year on the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (the parent organization of PBS); Amtrak received $1.56 billion in federal funding in 2010 [Editor's Note: The I-95 corridor is henceforth known as Won't-Vote-For-Him-Anyway Alley"], with $1.3 billion in stimulus funds; while the National Endowment of the Arts lists the current level of federal funding at approximately $146 million. Romney said he would block grant Medicaid and send programs like housing vouchers and food stamps back to the states. This, he argued, would save the federal government 'approximately $100 billion a year within four years' (the House GOP budget claims to save $771 billion over 10 years). It would also mean dramatic cuts to each of these programs, as states are already dealing with major budget shortfalls. Romney also told Fortune that he would reduce the number of federal programs by 10 percent through attrition, while tying the compensation of federal workers to that in the private sector. 'That saves about $47 billion a year, by the way,' he said." [HuffPost]

UNLIKELY VOTERS WHO DON'T GIVE A CRAP LIKE OBAMA... THEY GUESS - Suffolk University and USA Today were able to get a large enough group of people to stop watching Spike TV and/or eating at Arby's to answer questions about their irrelevant political opinions. Ariel Edwards-Levy: "Polls of likely 2012 voters show President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney locked in a close race. But Obama would have a nearly sure chance of a second term if he could convince unregistered and unlikely voters to come to the polls in November, according to a survey released Wednesday by Suffolk University and USA Today. Unregistered voters favored Obama over Romney by 43 percent to 14 percent, with 23 percent saying they would prefer a third-party candidate. Among unlikely voters, Obama led Romney by 43 percent to 20 percent, with 18 percent preferring a third-party candidate." [HuffPost]


SELLOUT UPDATE: CARDOZA WAS NEGOTIATING LOBBYING JOB FOR WEEKS - Politico: "Rep. Dennis Cardoza entered into serious negotiations for his new job with a California law firm two weeks before his sudden resignation from Congress, POLITICO has learned. Cardoza, who Tuesday said he was quitting Congress, filed paperwork with the House Ethics Committee on July 30 saying he was talking with Manatt, Phelps & Phillips. As of Wednesday morning, he was listed on Manatt's website as a managing director in the firm's public policy practice. (The listing was subsequently removed from the site.)" [Politico]

LOL @ Dennis Cardoza's recent vote attendance

ANN ROMNEY DISCLOSES HORSE, KEEPS TAX RETURNS SECRET - In an NBC interview set to air tomorrow night on Rock Center, Ann Romney stated that no more of her family's tax returns will be released to the public. "We have been very transparent to what's legally required of us," she said. "There's going to be no more tax releases given." She added that disclosing the information would give the Obama campaign "more ammunition," which to our overactive imaginations can only mean they contain specifics on some kind of rare animal smuggling operation or pernicious rebel financing ring like they had in Casino Royale. She did introduce the reporter to a horse named Magic. [NBC News]

PLANNED PARENTHOOD FOE DEFEATED IN PRIMARY, REPLACED BY FOE-IER FOE - In an upset, staunch conservative Cliff Stearns was defeated by tea party challenger Ted Yoho ([Trailer voice]"The tricorne hats are pointier... The better neighborhood meet-ups better catered... The leaflets on Agenda 21 Xeroxed...in color. This fall, The. Tea. Party. Is *BUM* *BUM* *BUM*.... Back."[/Trailer voice]). Amanda Terkel: "Stearns, a 12-term incumbent, was trailing 'large animal veterinarian' Ted Yoho by just 829 votes in Florida's 3rd congressional district after Tuesday's GOP primary...Stearns had a huge money advantage in the race, as well as endorsements from Reps. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and Allen West (R-Fla.). But Yoho won over many conservative activists, going after politicians in Washington as 'pigs feeding at the trough.' Stearns has become best known at the national level for leading the way on conservative pet projects. Most notably, he pushed a congressional investigation into whether Planned Parenthood was using taxpayer money to fund abortions." [HuffPost]

GOP LEADERSHIP: AWESOME. ANOTHER TEA PARTIER. SO GREAT. - A GOP official told us that House leadership iss not looking forward to dealing with one more difficult-to-corral member, and that Stearns was seen as selfish. "And now there is another Tea Partier heading to D.C. He was a senior member that didn't take his race seriously and kept his money," he said...According to Stearns' most recent campaign finance filing with the Federal Election Commission, the 12-term congressman had more than $2 million in cash on hand for his reelection campaign. The Republican operative said that Stearns was still sitting on a similar amount of cash as he lost to his Tea Party challenger, the large animal veterinarian Ted Yoho. That money could have come in handy as Stearns lost by only 800 votes. Yoho raised only $300,000 for the whole race through July 25, according to his most recent FEC filings." [With Paul Blumenthal]

@LEBassett: A record 154 women will be on the ballot for House seats this year! 110 Dems, 44 Repubs. via @The2012Project

THE OWNER OF ROMNERYAN.COM WON THE DAY, HANDS DOWN - Somewhere, Rick Santorum's heart just exploded from enjoying this web defamation Schadenfreude too much. Daily Intel: "Head over to RomneyRyan.com right now, and you'll see a happy photo of the new GOP ticket and a link promising Mitt Romney's tax returns, which, as you might expect, doesn't not actually lead to Mitt Romney's tax returns... The site is owned by 26-year-old Astoria resident (and Ron Paul supporter) Peter Crowley, who tells us that he (quite presciently) bought the domain back in 2010 as Paul Ryan's stock began to climb in the Republican Party...Despite his lack of success so far, Crowley told us he's still hoping to get at least $10,000 for RomneyRyan.com, and he's begun broadening his search for a buyer. 'I'm going to call Stephen Colbert,' Crowley says. 'I thought he might be interested.'" [NY Mag]

If it were up to us, RomneyRyan.com would be a super-zoomed-in, super-pixiliated video loop of Romney awkwardly laughing.

We're still hoping for the political union of Pacific Islanders and Franco Americans but this'll sate us for now: "An Irish-American political action committee will launch the McBLACKPAC super-PAC at the Democratic convention in Charlotte. The super-PAC aims to help young Irish and young black politicians win state and national elections, according to the Irish American Democrats political action committee." [The Hill]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Corgis! Lots and lots and lots of corgis!


- Femto-photography documents events at one-trillion fps. Here's Ramesh Raskar screening slow motion videos of *light* traveling. [http://bit.ly/SmS0Co]

- The trailer for the third seasons of "Downton Abbey" has been released. One prominent character is missing: the money. [http://bit.ly/NEyNdI]

- In honor of Shark Week, the folks at HuffPost Green put together a mashup of the best movie shark attacks. [http://bit.ly/TEJfGu]

- A 1995 educational video singing the praises of a tubular new thing called "The Internet." [http://bit.ly/OiAT5g]

- Clips from 295 movies sing "Baby Got Back." [http://bit.ly/QBo9oo]

- Fans of President Obama and "Les Miserables" contain your excitement: A version of "One Day More" reworded to promote the commander-in-chief's candidacy. [http://bit.ly/PiNSqf]

- The Dark Knight Rises but with an opening more reminiscent of the original "Batman" series. [http://bit.ly/Sm8ZVv]


@delrayser: "'Severely conservative'? If I'm going to be your VP, let's DO 'severely conservative.'" *pulls out dog-eared copy of Atlas Shrugged*

@joseiswriting: Thanks for following me, @TSAgov

@JPfreire: Going on MSNBC at 11ish to talk about how Biden was just saying he was a slave to Ryan's dreamy blue eyes.


Tonight: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg gathers up all his bestest Wall Street friends and burns Elizabeth Warren in effigy has them over to his house for a Scott Brown fundraiser. The candidate will be there himself, but we can't possibly imagine what the conversation will entail. [Mayor Mike's Pad]

Friday: Because they both have to bide their time until 2016 -- and good lord you certainly aren't going to do it by governing or stuff, Bobby Jindal and Scott Walker convene in the bayou for a roundtable discussion benefiting the Louisiana GOP. [Calcasieu Parish, LA]

Friday evening: John McCain breaks escapes from one of his umteen-billion homes and, more significnalty, Arizona in summer, to attend a fundraiser for Denny Rehberg's Senate candidacy. Montana in Summer. That'd be nice. [Hilton Garden Inn, Great Falls, MT]

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