by Benjamin J. Kirby
I offer this without comment except to say that I genuinely miss Mr. Rogers.
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The City Council unanimously approved the creation of a domestic partnership registry on Thursday. The new law, modeled after one Tampa approved in March, requires health care facilities to allow any registered domestic partner to visit their partner and make care decisions if their partner is incapacitated.
It was only a matter of time before St. Pete caught up to Tampa... and Gulfport.
It's nice to see the Tampa Bay area leading on this issue.
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The good-enough parent -- it's on my reading list for later. I'm too busy burping my baby, reading to my two year-old, changing diapers, and cleaning up a toy room to check it out now.
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Bill Nelson (D-inc): 49 (47)
Connie Mack IV (R): 36 (37)
Undecided: 15 (17)
Bill Nelson (D-inc): 48 (48)
George LeMieux (R): 35 (34)
Undecided: 17 (18)
Bill Nelson (D-inc): 47 (47)
Mike McCalister (R): 33 (35)
Undecided: 20 (19)
Bill Nelson (D-inc): 47 (—)
Dave Weldon (R): 31 (—)
Undecided: 22 (—)
I sort of assume the GOP nominee is going to be Connie Mack -- I haven't been paying enough attention to know for sure, though. Any way you slice it, it's much better to be in Nelson's shoes at this stage in the game.
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Please tell me this doesn't surprise you: the Koch Brothers are behind the Florida voter purge.
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John Dickerson at Slate raises the question: Is Bill Clinton helping or hurting Obama?
You know, for a guy who is of Washington (his mother was an award-winning journalist, and he went to the elite Sidwell Friends in D.C.), I'd kind of hope Dickerson would understand Clinton a little better than he seems to.
That's not to say he doesn't raise valid points. Clinton is a storyteller in a Twitter world. That's actually true, and I would guess that the former president probably gets new media, but probably doesn't think much of it.
Than, there are points I couldn't disagree with more:
He has forgotten how to talk like a politician (because he doesn't have to). Bill Clinton speaks in paragraphs. He spends a lot of his time in long conversations with interesting people talking about global issues. That can deaden your political communications skills which—when sharp—allow you say nothing interesting about even the smallest issues. In order to navigate a world in which your every word is spliced, you must say nothing that can be taken out of context, which is to say, very little at all. The former leader of the free world isn’t going to simply read talking points cooked up by the Obama campaign in Chicago, anyway. One strong dissenting voice among my interviews argued that while Clinton did have trouble adapting to the new world during the 2008 campaign, he’s long since adapted.
What? I get the premise, but I'm with the strong dissenting voice on this one. He doesn't speak like a politician because he's forgotten how -- he doesn't speak like a politician, because he's one of those rare creatures who has trascended politics, a space pretty much reserved for ex-presidents and other accomplished elder statesmen.
And while we're at it, are we really talking about Hillary in 2016?
He is angling for his wife. Bill Clinton was his wife’s chief surrogate in 2008. He says the decision is up to her, but everyone assumes that he really wants her to make another run for president. So could he be sabotaging Obama to help his wife? That would require enough subtlety not to get caught, but would still need to be bracing enough to do Obama some damage. Even Clinton can’t pull that off.
I have a hard time with this one. It's true -- "even Clinton can't pull that off". So why are we talking about it? The guy is a good politician, but working for Hillary 2016 in the midst of the 2012 campaign? It just doesn't add up.
If you're looking for an answer about whether Clinton helps our hurts Obama from Dickerson, you won't find it.
If you're asking me (and, to be clear, no one is), I say he helps him. Hell, on the fundraising alone, the guy is a net plus -- a big net plus, and dollars in this era of Citizens United are going to matter.
But bigger than that -- or as big, anyway -- is the chance for President Clinton to do what he really does best: build bridges. I know there are still "Hillary" folks out there with grudges against Obama and the Obama '08 team. Oh, sure, maybe they've come around in the last few years (making the former Senator the Secretary of State was a damn good start). But make no mistake: the grudge is still there.
Clinton can do a lot to help bridge the divide between the old Clinton folks and the Obama folks. In fact, Clinton may be the only one who can do it.
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This evening's video is courtesy of David Flintom -- thanks, David.
It's almost Friday.