Andrew Romano

Stories by Andrew Romano

  • Caption Contest!

    Given all the talk about acorns, plumbers and washed-up terrorists,...
  • The Filter: Oct. 16, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must read stories.EDGY MCCAIN SHEDS NO NEW LIGHT(John F. Harris and Jim VandeHei, Politico)John McCain’s challenge at the final debate was to present his case for the presidency in a new light. But over 90 minutes of intense exchanges with Barack Obama—sometimes...
  • Elizabeth Edwards! Todd Harris! Liveblogging!

    The title says it all. In a NEWSWEEK exclusive, Elizabeth Edwards, wife of former presidential contender John Edwards, and Todd Harris, a former McCain adviser, liveblog the Oct. 15 debate here.  For my preview, click here.   I'll be back later with some post-show analysis. In the meantime, the comments are all yours.  
  • Taxi Talk

    One of my favorite parts of hitting the campaign trail is chatting with cabdrivers, who always seem especially eager to discuss politics. (Listening to talk radio all day will do that to you.) Take my cabbie this evening out on Long Island. A black man in his mid-40's who arrived in the U.S. from Jamaica in 1990, Steve was something of an enigma. As we motored from the Garden City station to the local Marriott, Steve immediately asked whether I was attending the debate. I told him I was a reporter for Newsweek. "Is that in the city?" he said, drawing a blank; I explained that it was "like Time." "Oh," he said. "You know, I've been following the politics, what's going on. It's my hobby." As if to prove his point, Steve flipped from FM (Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'") to AM, where he settled on Michael Savage's "Savage Nation." (A Journey fan, I was deeply saddened by the change.) "I listen to this guy, Savage, all the time," he said. "He gives me both sides of an issue."...
  • Cracking the ACORN Case

    Acorn + Mickey Mouse = The Most Adorable Political "Scandal" in Recent Memory. It may also be one of the most pointless. In recent days, conservative activists and right-leaning media outlets like FOX News and Matt Drudge--who led his influential site with the Mickey Mouse story yesterday afternoon--have tried to raise a ruckus over the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, a liberal nonprofit/lobbying group--it typically fights on behalf of poor people for free school lunches and government housing--that also spearheaded one of this cycle's largest (and most controversial) voter registration drives. Unless I'm mistaken, the conspiracy theory goes something like this: Obama "has ties" to Acorn; Acorn is trying to steal the election; therefore, by the transitive property, Obama is also trying to steal the election. To see why this makes no sense, it'll be helpful to break the equation down into three bite-sized pieces. I. Obama Has Ties to ACORN: This is true. As th...
  • Obama: What, Me Worry?

    Three signs of confidence from the Obama camp: I. Ad Wars: While outspending McCain three-to-one on television advertisements between Oct. 7 and Oct. 13, Obama dramatically increased his disbursements in a wide swath of red states as well--"evidence," as the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza writes, "that he is almost...
  • The Filter: Oct. 15, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories.OBAMA, MCCAIN SEEK LEADER'S IMAGE IN FINAL DEBATE...
  • Signs o' the Times

    Via Flickr, one for Barack Obama... ... and via Jmart, the two sides of John McCain--or at least his crowds: The second sign reads "You Had Me At Hero." The first... well, that one speaks for itself. 
  • Don't Call It a 'Comeback'

    Breaking news! John McCain is about to make a comeback. Unless, of course, he isn't....
  • Ad Hawk: Getting Out the 'Rufus Humphrey Vote'

    As an unabashed fan of "Gossip Girl"--it's no "The O.C.," but then again, what is?--I feel strangely compelled to post the latest ad from liberal advocacy group MoveOn.org. Called "Talk to Your Parents," it features Dan Humphrey and Serena Van Der Woodsen--also known, I'm told, as Penn Badgely and Blake Lively--encouraging kids to steer the 'rents toward Barack Obama. Judging by the small-scale buy--national airtime during "Gossip Girl" followed by screenings on MTV and Comedy Central in North Carolina and Nevada--the point is to get Blair-aholic political bloggers like yours truly to post the spot online. I hate playing to type, but...[youtube:RxvHkFLmqRk] Truth be told, I'm digging the satirical anti-drug PSA vibe of the spot. "Mom, Dad, I found this in your room," says "Lonely Boy" as he holds up a "Drill Baby Drill" trucker cap. "And if you're ever out somewhere and you're considering voting for...
  • Are You Ready for Some Theme Song?

    [youtube:MNj2Frskab8](Video via Jmart) Judging by the polls, Sarah Palin may not propel John McCain to the presidency. But at least she'll make the path to Election Day a little more melodious. At Palin's rally yesterday in Richmond, Va., the loudest applause was reserved not for the Mooseburger Queen of Wasilla but for her special guest, Hank Williams, Jr., who performed a new, pro-McCain rendition of his late-1970s hit "Family Tradition." "The left-wing liberal media...
  • The Filter: Oct. 14, 2008

    MCCAIN IS LOOKING FOR ANOTHER COMEBACK(Mark Z. Barabak and Maeve Reston, Los Angeles Times)John...
  • What McCain Should Do, Vol II: The 'Bulworth' Moment

    [youtube:cWhHZwKCiIs]In the first installment of our new "What McCain Should Do" series--which seeks to bring you the smartest and savviest in unsolicited advice for the struggling Republican nominee--we highlighted Ross Douthat's plan for a "Bailout...
  • Is Pennsylvania a Done Deal? Fineman Says Yes.

     In his latest "Race to the Finish" post, my fellow NEWSWEEK political blogger Howard Fineman writes that while all the major presidential players spent their weekends in Pennsylvania, only the Democrats have a shot at winning. His explanation? That Obama "speaks to" to a new "more tolerant, less culturally judgmental" Pennsylvania--a place that isn't any more economically depressed than Massachusetts. It's an important reminder that political commentators all too often rely on outmoded, reductive cliches--in this case, the "Deerhunter" stereotype--when analyzing the electorate. After all, there's a reason why Obama is winning the Keystone State by an average polling margin (13.8 percent) larger than McCain's current leads in Georgia, Montana, Texas and Mississippi--even though neighboring Ohio is still close. Howard hits the proverbial nail on the head:The easy explanation for why Obama is...
  • A Less Manic Monday

    Hey everyone, In honor of my Italian heritage--it is Columbus Day, after all--and (more to the point) the coughy, fevery affliction that's reduced my mental functions to a bare minimum (and confined me to bed), I'm going to take it a little slow today. Instead of article-length analyses, I'll be posting a few quicker hits (including excerpts of some of the terrific stories in this week's dead-tree NEWSWEEK). Normal Stumpering will resume tomorrow. Thanks so much for reading,Andrew 
  • Red, White and Boo

    [youtube:Kf6YKOkfFsE] The candidates call for civility--McCain a bit belatedly--and their crowds react by booing. Via Politico:...
  • Reality Check

    Writing in response to my post earlier today about William Ayers, reader J.S. claims that the media is applying different standards to Obama and...
  • McCain's Role in the Bailout Bill: A Drama in Four Acts

    [youtube:aDWSFKnBIHg] I. John McCain, Sept. 25: "It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration's proposal to meet the crisis. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time. ...
  • Will Race Matter?

    Could Obama's race actually help him on Election Day? A working assumption among political junkies is that no one can predict what will happen when the country closes the voting-booth curtains on Nov. 4 and is finally forced to decide, for the first time in U.S. history, whether it's ready to support an African-American for president. That's why we're inclined to distrust predictions about the outcome of this particular election. So what if polls now show Obama ahead of McCain 353-185 on the electoral map? the thinking goes. People who've told pollsters they'll support a black candidate could back out, or a bunch of crazy unpolled racists could show up, or whatever. The idea the pre-election surveys tend to exaggerate a black candidate's level of support is commonly known as the Bradley effect; it's named after Tom Bradley, who lost the California governorship in 1982 despite polls that had showed him in the lead. But while I don't doubt that "a small percentage of respondents woul...
  • The Filter: Oct. 9, 2008

    A round-up of this morning's must-read stories. INVISIBLE MAN(David Samuels, New Republic)My own belief is that Barack Obama has the makings of an unusual and...