POLITICS
11/07/2012 05:23 pm ET Updated Jan 07, 2013

HUFFPOST HILL - Socialism, Day One

Life, post-election: Reporters began to sweat profusely and scratch their chests as they experienced the symptoms of gaffe-withdrawal. Conservative pundits tried to find a way to unskew the forthcoming NRSC chairperson race. And conservative Americans braced themselves for the rising army of stoned married gays that'll brainwash their kids and eat their Bugles. This is HUFFPOST HILL for Wednesday, November 7th, 2012:

FISCAL CLIFF: BOEHNER REJECTS TAX HIKES - Mike McAuliff: "Moving quickly to put a disappointing election behind him, the [House Speaker John Boehner] turned Wednesday to the fast-approaching 'fiscal cliff' -- the paired economic threats of mandated trillion-dollar budget cuts that start Jan. 2 and expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts on Jan. 1... Democrats have already proposed trying to deal with the matter quickly, in the lame-duck session of Congress that starts next week. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said earlier that it was fairly simple to avoid the cliff if the GOP would accept the popular idea of letting tax cuts expire only for income above $250,000. But Boehner signaled in a speech on Capitol Hill that he was unwilling to embrace the Democratic vision and that he was unwilling to move hastily, suggesting that he and President Barack Obama should go back to common ground they nearly found last year during the bitter debt limit battle...Boehner did not offer specifics, but suggested the possibility of passing some sort of stopgap to avoid economic calamity while moving toward a permanent fix. That fix would include lowering overall tax rates, eliminating tax loopholes and taking some sort of whack at Social Security and Medicare. Democrats have adamantly opposed cutting benefits in either program, although they have indicated a willingness to make some changes." [HuffPost]

In Colorado, 53,290 more people voted to legalize weed than to reelect Obama. Frankly, weed has had a better four years.

WHY HASN'T FLORIDA BEEN CALLED? - Please spare us your hanging chad joke. We're all so very tired. Luke Johnson: "As of Wednesday afternoon, President Barack Obama had a 4,143,342 to 4,096,314 lead over GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the state -- a margin of 47,028 votes with 100 percent of precincts reporting. Nine counties -- Broward, Duval, Escambia, Hillsborough, Miami-Dade, Okaloosa, Palm Beach, Pinellas and Putnam -- are still counting absentee ballots, the Associated Press reported Wednesday morning. In total, 200,000 absentee and provisional ballots had yet to be counted as of Wednesday morning, larger than Obama's lead." We're calling this for Obama, because a ton of those provisionals are people who recently moved -- in other words, not rich people. And by "we" we mean HuffPost Hill, the reckless newsletter you're now reading, not The Huffington Post, the journalistic outfit within which we operate. [HuffPost]

Pro tip: Don't be a rape apologist -- "Climbing back from his controversial remark about how 'some girls rape easy' wasn't so easy for Wisconsin state Rep. Roger Rivard (R-Rice Lake), who lost reelection to Democrat Stephen Smith on Tuesday. Smith received 51 percent of the vote, beating Rivard by 582 votes out of 27,000 cast. Rivard took office in 2011." [HuffPost's Amanda Terkel]

But pressuring your patient/mistress to have an abortion is still a morning-winner.

DAILY DELANEY DOWNER - Time for everyone to flip out about the fiscal cliff! DDD's favorite part of the cliff is the one that will abruptly halt unemployment checks to 2 million people during the week between Christmas and New Year's Day, the absolute most depressing time of the year. Happy Holidays :'( [Hang in there!]

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LET THE GREAT ROMNEY CAMPAIGN FINGER POINTING... BEGIN!!! - WaPo goes deep with an anecdote-rich campaign retrospective:" 'Ann would come to me and say, 'Eric, what are we going to do about this? It needs to be addressed,'' said Eric Fehrnstrom, Romney's senior adviser, referring to the candidate's wife. Romney's family longed to tell the story of the 'real Mitt,' but advisers told them that the time for that would come later, during the convention and debates. Another Romney adviser said: 'The group think today is if we were to go back and change one thing, we'd spend more money and more strongly defend Mitt and push back on the 'rich guy,' the tax rate issue, the Bain Capital issue. [Though how you do that for a rich guy from Bain who dodged taxes is unclear.] We knew it was coming and we should've done more positive ads to get his favorables up.'...On Sept. 11, amid developing reports about an attack on U.S. diplomatic missions in Egypt and Libya, Romney aides found a political opportunity...By sunrise the next day, it was clear to Romney that they had acted too quickly. The campaign learned that four Americans had been killed in an attack on a U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens. Even to some Republicans, Romney's hasty statement looked insensitive. 'We screwed up, guys,' Romney told aides on a conference call that morning, according to multiple people on the call. 'This is not good.'" [WaPo]

Chris Christie boils it down: "He didn't get enough votes."

Front pages from across America, courtesy of the Newseum.

HARRY REID: FILIBUSTER REFORM UP FOR CONSIDERATION IN 113TH CONGRESS - In his first post-election press conference, the Nevada Democrat said he wouldn't go so far as to eliminate the filibuster, which requires 60 votes for the chamber to enter and exit the amendment and debate process. But in remarks meant to preview a more combative approach during the next session, he warned Republicans that obstructionism as a tactic won't be tolerated -- or as technically feasible. "I want to work together, but I also want everyone to also understand, you cannot push us around. We want to work together," Reid said. Reid has gone down this path before, flirting with the concept of rules reform after the 2010 midterm elections. But he backed off the idea under pressure from some of the chamber's longer-serving members, including those within his own party. Sources close to the majority leader say the intervening time period has hardened his belief that the Senate is too dysfunctional to leave its rules untouched. And in an interview over the summer with The Huffington Post, Reid outlined the specific details of what he had in store for the next Congress. [With Sam Stein]

Mass email from Elizabeth Warren: "I didn't build that. You did."

IF YOU GO AFTER PATTY MURRAY, YOU BEST NOT MISS: DEMS MAKE MORE GAINS IN SENATE - Congressman Rick Berg conceded to former state Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp this afternoon in the race to be North Dakota's next junior senator. Jon Tester -- the Senate's most 1950s football coach-y member -- was declared the winner of his reelection bid this morning. That brings the total number of likely caucusing Democrats to 55. Patty Murray and the DSCC have insulated themselves well from the likely thwacking they'll take in 2014 when a number of red state senators will be up for reelection, specifically Mary Landrieu, Kay Hagan, Mark Pryor, Max Baucus and Mark Begich. Of course, we could see more Republican foot shooting in the primaries -- can you say "Virginia Foxx for Senate"?

@SaraLibby: And Heitkamp's win makes 19 women in the U.S. Senate. Most in history.

@samsteinhp: Nate Silver may have missed the North Dakota Senate race but Huffpost didn't huff.to/U9zoWO

Here's how the various analysts compared. Pollster nailed it, calling 332 EC votes for Obama, as did a few others.

"What Joe Scarborough Would Look Like With Ten Famous Mustaches"

BACHMANN TO CRAZY EYES THE LOWER CHAMBER FOR TWO MORE YEARS - The DCCC won a huge victory last night when Michelle Bachmann narrowly won her reelection bid. NBC News: "Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, the Tea Party champion and failed Republican presidential nomination candidate, secured a fourth term by winning a very tight race for re-election against Democrat challenger businessman Jim Graves early on Wednesday. Bachmann led Graves by 3,256 votes - or just under one percentage point - out of more than 351,000 votes cast in the Minnesota 6th Congressional District with 98.2 percent of precincts reporting, according to unofficial state elections returns." [NBC News]

@JesseFFerguson: For first time in history, House Democratic Caucus will NOT be majority white male after this election.

Via Politico, Fordham's political science department compiled a list of the most accurate polling firms: 1. PPP (D)* 2. Daily Kos/SEIU/PPP* 3. YouGov* 4. Ipsos/Reuters* 5. Purple Strategies 6. NBC/WSJ 6. CBS/NYT 6. YouGov/Economist 9. UPI/CVOTER 10. IBD/TIPP 11. Angus-Reid* 12. ABC/WP* 13. Pew Research* 13. Hartford Courant/UConn* 15. CNN/ORC 15. Monmouth/SurveyUSA 15. Politico/GWU/Battleground 15. FOX News 15. Washington Times/JZ Analytics 15. Newsmax/JZ Analytics 15. American Research Group 15. Gravis Marketing 23. Democracy Corps (D)* 24. Rasmussen 24. Gallup 26. NPR 27. National Journal* 28. AP/GfK" [Politico]

PORTMAN CONSIDERING RUN FOR NRSC CHAIR - No doubt he'll leverage his ability to imitate other people in debates. Politico: "The Ohio Republican has been getting calls for a few weeks asking him to run. One source said Portman is 'flattered' but is still undecided....Sources said Portman hasn't made any final decisions on the matter, and he could be up against another freshman Republican, Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran, who made his intention to jump into the race clear weeks ago. But given Portman's national name recognition, his high-profile role as a surrogate for Romney, and his close relationship with McConnell, the Ohio Republican would likely have the edge if he chose to jump in." [Politico]

Hmmmmmm: "Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) announced today that he has acquired enough support to win the National Republican Senatorial Committee chairman post in the upcoming leadership elections. 'I have a sufficient number of commitments that if the election is held, I would be successful in becoming the chair,' Moran told Roll Call in an afternoon phone interview." [Roll Call]

Alabama, once again proving that it is Alabama, reelected Roy Moore, the Ten Commandments judge. TPM: "The Alabama Media Group reported the Republican took 52 percent of the vote to defeat Democrat Bob Vance. Moore unsuccessfully ran for governor of Alabama in 2006 and 2010 and has most recently been serving as president of the Foundation of Moral Law, a conservative organization which defends religious liberty. While his campaign website notes he is 'nationally known as the Ten Commandments Judge,' Moore has said he will not bring the Ten Commandments monument back to the judicial building." [TPM]

Mississippi, once again proving that it is Mississippi: "Following the announcement of the re-election of President Barack Obama, tempers flared on campus. Hundreds of Ole Miss students exchanged racial epithets and violent, politicized chants in response to the announcement of the re-election of President Barack Obama. What began as an argument around midnight quickly spread across campus." [DMOnline]

OBAMA CAMPAIGN HAD ARMY OF NATE SILVERS STASHED AWAY SOMEWHERE - Time: "The magic tricks that opened wallets were then repurposed to turn out votes. The analytics team used four streams of polling data to build a detailed picture of voters in key states. In the past month, said one official, the analytics team had polling data from about 29,000 people in Ohio alone -- a whopping sample that composed nearly half of 1% of all voters there -- allowing for deep dives into exactly where each demographic and regional group was trending at any given moment. This was a huge advantage: when polls started to slip after the first debate, they could check to see which voters were changing sides and which were not. It was this database that helped steady campaign aides in October's choppy waters, assuring them that most of the Ohioans in motion were not Obama backers but likely Romney supporters whom Romney had lost because of his September blunders." [Time]

Via the Examiner, everything Joe Biden ate on the campaign trail.

COLORADO GOVERNOR HAS THE LEGAL CLARITY MUNCHIES - Colorado Governor Hickenlooper, whose last name actually sounds like an obscure snack that stoners would love (the 'o's would totally be turned into eyes in the logo), is dealing with his constituents' decision to contradict federal law and legalize marijuana like a champ. "The voters have spoken and we have to respect their will," Hickenlooper said in a statement released last night. "This will be a complicated process, but we intend to follow through. That said, federal law still says marijuana is an illegal drug, so don't break out the Cheetos or gold fish too quickly." [Fox21]

Republican Congressman Jack Kingston of Georgia put some perspective on Colorado's vote to legalize marijuana: "In legalizing pot, the voters of Colorado have proven they know how to deal with four more years of #Obama," he tweeted today. If anyone sees the congressman staring intensely at the House chamber's carpeting, you now know why. [National Journal]

DICK MORRIS SCRAMBLES TO STAY RELEVANT, AS IF FOX NEWS REALLY CARES - The former Clinton advisor-turned-Iraqi information minister of polling had predicted nothing short of a Romney landslide, forecasting that the Republican nominee would win states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Minnesota. ("My own view is that Romney is going to carry 325 electoral votes," he told the network at one point). BZZZZZZZZZ -- try again, Mr. Morris. First, contrition: "I've got egg on my face. I predicted a Romney landslide and, instead, we ended up with an Obama squeaker....these high levels of minority and young voter participation are here to stay. And, with them, a permanent reshaping of our nation's politics...I derided the media polls for their assumption of what did, in fact happen...But the more proximate cause of my error was that I did not take full account of the impact of hurricane Sandy and of Governor Chris Christie's bipartisan march through New Jersey arm in arm with President Obama. Not to mention Christe's fawning promotion of Obama's presidential leadership. It made all the difference." A+ scapegoating! Maybe "The Five" will have you back. [DickMorris.com]

ANTHONY WEINER REEMERGES ON TWITTER - Oh glory of glories! The former New York congressman, who resigned in 2011 after it was revealed he had been... lewdly conversing with women he met via social networking, posted his first Twitter update this morning. There was none of the snark that characterized Weiner's pre-scandal feed; instead he posted a video about Hurricane Sandy relief efforts in Queens. Still, it totally makes up for the post-election market crash. [@repweiner]

BECAUSE YOU'VE READ THIS FAR - Baby panda kisses mother.

COMFORT FOOD

- The best GIFs from election night. [http://bit.ly/UwINs3]

- Congratulations for surviving election day! Sufjan Stevens performs a very pretty rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" for you. [http://bit.ly/SrPtro]

- Outdated printers beep, buzz and boop a cover of Bob Dylan's "The Times They Are A-Changin.'" [http://chzb.gr/SZatHi]

- Political anecdote or movie character? See how well you do. [http://huff.to/RIBtuF]

- Vintage spoof advertisements from Mad Magazine. [http://bit.ly/PBLpaW]

- Vintage Japanese commercials featuring American celebrities. Paul Newman for Maxwell House will kill you a little on the inside. [http://bit.ly/Tu4RSW]

- Fifteen jarring portraits of celebrities. The can of Tab in "Christopher Walkin in the Shop" really turns it into art. [http://bit.ly/UjbRDc]

TWITTERAMA

@WGladstone: Your party doesn't believe in evolution. RT @McCainBlogette Heartbroken. My party has to evolve or it's going to die.

@davidplotz: White guys, don't feel bad. We dominated democracy since Athens 508 BC. That's 2500 yrs! But what we will do now? Sports? World of Warcraft?

@elisefoley: I'll never hear Michele Bachmann say "ONE! TERM! PRESIDENT!" again. So sad.

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