Andrew Romano

Stories by Andrew Romano

  • Has the Times 'Awoken a Sleeping Giant' with the McCain Story?

    Having spent five-and-a-half years in the Hanoi Hilton, John McCain knows a thing or two about being a victim. But playing the victim for political gain? That's something the steely senator has always shied away from, and rightfully so....
  • The Filter: 2.21.08 ... McCain Shocker (or 'Smear') Edition

    A round up of this morning's must-read stories.FOR MCCAIN, SELF-CONFIDENCE ON ETHICS POSES ITS OWN RISK (Jim Rutenberg, Marilyn W. Thompson, David D. Kirkpatrick and Stephen Labaton, New York Times) Early in Senator John McCain’s first run for the White House eight years ago, waves of anxiety swept through his small circle of advisers.A female lobbyist had been turning up with him at fund-raisers,...
  • The Filter: 2.20.08

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.YESTERDAY'S RESULTS(In case Stumper is your only source of election news. I'm flattered.)Wisconsin (D)Obama: 58 percentClinton: 41 percentHawaii (D)Obama: 76 percentClinton: 24 percentWisconsin (R)McCain: 55 percentHuckabee: 37 percentPaul: 5 percentWashington (R)McCain: 49 percentHuckabee: 22 percentPaul: 8 percentWISCONSIN AND HAWAII HAND VICTORIES TO OBAMA(Patrick Healy and Jeff Zeleny, New York Times)Senator Barack Obama decisively beat Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Wisconsin...
  • McCain, Victorious, Takes Aim at Obama--Again

    Here's Holly Bailey reporting from John McCain's Wisconsin victory party (in Columbus, Ohio). Without a real rival for the Republican nod--sorry, Mike Huckabee--the Arizona senator is using the windows of free, uninterrupted air time after his primary wins to attack the man he's expecting to face next November--Barack Obama. If his past two performances are any indication, McCain plans to focus his fire on Obama's "inexperience" and two most controversial foreign policy ideas--his willingness to meet with leaders critical of America and carry out strikes against terrorists in Pakistan. (Hillary Clinton also takes issue with Obama's positions here.) Obama's response? “John McCain’s remarks tonight shows why he’s offering nothing more than a third term of George Bush’s policies," said Obama spokesman Bill Burton in an email to reporters. "More fear-mongering, more than a century of war in Iraq, and more budget-busting tax cuts for the...
  • The Best Hillary Fan Video (Until the Next Hillary Fan Video)

    And by best we mean worst. (Hat tip to Wonkette) If you love adolescent lyrics and off-key, high-pitched, vibrato-heavy warbling, you'll love "Hillary Clinton--Making Our Dreams Come True." Personally, I miss "Hillary4U&Me." The less I say--other than "beware"--the better. But I do have a few factual quibbles. Despite what ron0iQRe claims, I suspect the senator from New York has, in fact, "heard the word impossible" at some point over the past six decades.  Also, this time there time for chance. There is always time for chance. I'll leave it at that. "Enjoy."
  • Badger State Sneak Peek

    Over at the Politico, Mike Allen reports on the early buzz among party insiders: Democratic...
  • Cuba Libre? Not So Fast, Say the Candidates

    By Catharine Skipp As news of the sudden resignation of Cuba’s President Fidel Castro rippled through Miami’s Little Havana overnight, it was not the ringing celebration of Cuba Libre in the streets that many had expected. So too from the presidential campaigns who were quick to point out that one Castro is no better than another as proven by the reign, to date, of Fidel’s brother, Raul, as acting head of state since July 2006. There has been little change to point to as the power shifted from one to the other. None of the presidential hopefuls felt that the resignation signaled any monumental shift in political direction for the island nation. The statements issued by each campaign and echoed in calls from senior policy advisors all similarly called for the release of political prisoners and reiterated that this ‘change’ is no change. Randy Scheunemann, Sen. John McCain’s director of Foreign Policy and National Security said that the Cuban people have no more freedom or liberty...
  • What Vets Think of McCain

    Over at Soldier's Home, David Botti, NEWSWEEK's military blogger, weighs in on what veterans think about John McCain's candidacy:As the only combat veteran among the remaining presidential candidates, John McCain has a unique relationship to the current generation of vets cycling home from the fronts in Iraq and Afghanistan. What do veterans think of McCain? Are they inclined to hold him in higher respect, or follow his candidacy with a more critical eye? Can he count on their vote, or does he need to work twice as hard to assure them his plan for Iraq is the right one?  Read the Full Post Here 
  • Reality Check: Will Clinton Win Texas?

    The third in a series of four posts in which Stumper reality-checks the Democratic contest. Stay tuned for Ohio later today.UPDATE, 12.19.08: The polls are getting closer. Survey USA has Clinton leading by five percent--and CNN pegs the gap at two. Hold on, buckeroos. This is going to be a wild ride....
  • The (Presidents' Day) Filter: 2.18.08

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.THE NEWSWEEK ROSTER:THE END OF CONSERVATISM (Fareed Zakaria)Conservative slogans sound anachronistic in the context of today's problems, like an old TV show from the 1970s.BARACK'S ROCK (Richard Wolffe)She's the one who keeps him real, the one who makes sure running for...
  • Reality Check: Wisconsin

     The second of four posts in which Stumper reality-checks the Democratic contest. Stay tuned for Texas and Ohio over the weekend.UPDATE, 11.19.08: Up until late last week, Hillary Clinton looked like she was ducking Wisconsin in favor of later contests in Texas and Ohio. Whether she was simply lowering expectations or actually planning to leapfrog the Badger State, who knows. But she's clearly contesting it now. In addition to Friday's sharply negative ad (above), Clinton has spent every day since Saturday stumping in the state. And she's added a new attack to her arsenal, accusing Obama of plagiarizing speeches by Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick. The charge is sort of ridiculous: as Obama's national co-chair, not to mention his friend (and a former client of guru David Axelrod), Patrick has said that he and Obama regularly discuss language--and even that he instructed Obama's speechwriters to appropriate the phrases in question. Regardless, Clinton has...
  • Al Gore to the Rescue?

    Stumper's Take: He foresaw global warming. He "took the initiative" on the Internet. And he knew exactly how Iraq would turn out. Who's to say that Al Gore hasn't known all along that the Democratic race would descend into some weird state of gridlock--and that only he, the Goracle, could rescue the party from civil war? Read on for the what if's...By Eleanor CliftAl Gore on the second ballot: A ...
  • Reality Check: The Hart-Mondale Analogy

    The first of four posts in which Stumper reality-checks the Democratic contest. Stay tuned for Wisconsin later today and Texas and Ohio over the weekend. The ComparisonSince the start of the 2008 campaign--it feels like eons ago, doesn't it?--pundits have compared the Clinton-Obama contest to an earlier Democratic nomination battle: 1984's match up between Walter Mondale and Gary Hart. The similarities were initially superficial. Clinton, like Mondale, entered the race as the well-oiled, well-funded choice of the party establishment, while the younger, looser Obama echoed Hart's call for a new generation of leadership. But now that neither candidate looks likely to win the 2,025 pledged delegates needed to clinch the nod before the last primary in June, the climax of the 2008 campaign may also mirror 1984--with the power players known as superdelegates deciding the outcome.Why It WorksIn both cases, an inspiring, Kennedy-esque upstart shocks the political...
  • Romney and McCain: New BFFs?

    Not exactly. Here's NEWSWEEK's with the inside story of Romney's decision to endorse the presumptive Republican nominee.They often looked ready to trade blows in the debates. Just a few weeks ago, Mitt Romney called John McCain a liar for allegedly distorting Romney's position on the Iraq War. For his part, McCain seemed to revel in leading the other Republican candidates in ganging up on Romney, whom he didn't even try to pretend to like.But all that is ancient history now. After watching Mike Huckabee continue to rack up delegates and signal he has no intention of exiting the race--as he did after the Virginia primary Tuesday night--Romney decided to formally endorse the Arizona senator Thursday. According to a source close to Romney, who asked not to be identified discussing internal campaign strategy, the former Massachusetts governor was spurred to action by Huckabee's "decision to linger against impossible odds, delaying the launch of a...
  • Sleepless in Chicago

    She's running strong among workers in Ohio and Latinos in Texas, but Hillary Clinton may have just lost a crucial swath of the Democratic electorate to Barack Obama:The "hopeless romantic" vote. Fans of chick flicks that involve Meg Ryan, Tom Hanks and/or Nora Ephron and tell the story of two people coming together despite overwhelming odds--count me in--may be disappointed to hear that Bill and Hill will not be spending this most amorous of holidays within 400 miles of each other. While the former president stumps across Wisconsin--Milwaukee to Waukesha to Madison to La Crosse--his wife is wooing voters three states away in Ohio. I never bought the whole "marriage of political convenience" cliché, but with Clinton coming off eight straight losses, lagging in the latest Badger State polls and banking on Ohio as one of her March 4 bulwarks, political inconvenience is more than enough to keep her from cuddling up in Chappaqua with chocolates, Courvoisier and a...
  • Is McCain Crossing His Fingers for Clinton?

    Yesterday, I pointed out that John McCain's attacks on Obama for lacking specifics mirrored Hillary Clinton's--and speculated on how this echo effect could influence superdelegates to decide the Democratic race sooner rather than later. But I didn't weigh in on why McCain, who's no detail man himself, had chosen this particular swipe at this particular time (or why his economic adviser attacked Obama for allegedly plagiarizing Clinton's stimulus plan later in the day). Luckily, the very smart Jonathan Chait at the New Republic has done the heavy lifting for me. His take:Chait's analysis strikes me as not only possible, but probable. So while we're on the subject of Rovian bank-shot politics, I will respectfully note that Obama leads Mike Huckabee by 16.6 percent in the latest head-to-head polls--a full 13 points more than his margin over McCain. Perhaps the time has come, Senator, to start criticizing McCain for opposing a "right-to-life...
  • Happy Valentine's Day, McCain and Bush. Now Get a Room.

    The Democratic race may be cruelly, cripplingly cloudy right now, but this much is clear: whoever wins, Clinton or Obama, will labor mightily in the general election to fuse John McCain and George W. Bush into a hellish two-headed Orthrus in the minds of the American people. Obama, in fact, is already off and running, devoting much of Tuesday's "Potomac Primary" victory speech to contrasting himself with "Bush-McCain Republicans" (subtle, no?)  "George Bush won't be on the ballot this November, but his war and his tax cuts for the wealthy will," he said. "When I am the nominee, I will offer a clear choice." The hope, of course, is that the 66 percent of the populace that disapproves of Bush will see McCain in the same light--and that McCain will be forced to distance himself from Dubya without offending the GOP base, which still likes the guy. Not an easy dance to do--especially while still clinging to the last shreds of your...
  • The (Valentine's Day) Filter: 2.14.08

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.OBAMA'S LEAD IN DELEGATES SHIFTS FOCUS OF CAMPAIGN(Adam Nagourney, New York Times) Neither candidate is expected to win the 2,025 pledged delegates needed...