Morning Bunker Report: Wednesday 5.30.2012


The Romney-Trump RACISTHON in Vegas last night…

Romney greeted by Trump’s plane in Las Vegas. (Photo credit AP) | TPM

Donald Trump steals limelight from Romney campaign — Romney was scheduled to raise as much as $2 million with Donald Trump at two events Tuesday evening, but his public schedule was designed to avoid highlighting his relationship with the controversial mogul, who continues to espouse disproven theories that Obama was not born in the United States. That was a challenge from the moment Romney landed at Las Vegas-McCarran International Airport. As Romney’s chartered plane taxied down the runway, a private plane emblazoned with Trump’s surname sat parked near the terminal. Romney’s staffers tried to move photographers and reporters into a position where they could not see Trump’s shining-black aircraft as Romney alighted from his plane. They were not successful, and the first images of Romney arriving in Las Vegas and quickly beamed around the nation showed Trump’s plane over his shoulder. —

“Beginning?” “A LITTLE?!” CNN’s Wolf Blitzer tells Trump: ‘You’re beginning to sound a little ridiculous’ – During an argumentative interview on Tuesday [and just hours before the fundraiser Trump was throwing for Mitt Romney in Vegas], CNN’s Wolf Blitzer told real estate mogul Donald Trump that he was being “ridiculous” by continually questioning President Barack Obama’s birthplace. […]  After arguing about the long-form birth certificate last year, Blitzer told Donald he was “beginning to sound a little ridiculous.” “No, I think you are, Wolf,” Trump shot back. “Let me tell you something. I think you sound ridiculous.” Trump complained that he wanted to talk about China and OPEC, but Blitzer continued to press Trump on why he believed Obama was not a natural born citizen. —  Raw Story | image: Buzzfeed 

  • Trump also visited CNBC yesterday to talk about the President’s birth.
  • And Trump visited Fox News to talk about how birtherism would be ‘a great issue’ for Mitt Romney. He also boasted about the size of his Twitter earlier in the interview saying “my Twitter is very large.”
  • The Romney campaign tossed a little dog-whistle to the birthers yesterday too – The same day Romney planned to appear with noted birther Donald Trump at a Las Vegas fundraiser, the campaign released a copy of Mitt’s birth certificate.

So how’d the Romney-Trump RACISTHON in Vegas turn out last night? After a day consumed by coverage of Donald Trump’s birther crusade, the much-hyped Mitt Romney fundraiser at Trump International Hotel appears to have ended rather anti-climactically. [...] “This has really been a special day and a special evening,” Trump told attendees. “It’s been amazing the amount of money we have raised.” [...]  As Romney stood to Trump’s left, his face obscured by Trump’s shadow in the harsh lighting, Trump tore into China, and into Obama’s handling of relations with China. “They look at us. They laugh at us. They think we’re stupid. When he’s president they will no longer think we’re stupid,” Trump said of Romney. Trump also made a few interesting comments about U.S. war policy: “We have wars. We get nothing from them … We leave Iraq. What do we get out of it? They’re having a field day with the second largest oil reserves in the world. We get nothing.” In total, Trump spoke for only three and a half minutes. The campaign declined to say how much money was raised at the event. – Buzzfeed

GOP Groups Plan $1 BILLION Push for Romney (that’s billion, with a B) — “Republican super PACs and other outside groups shaped by a loose network of prominent conservatives — including Karl Rove, the Koch brothers and Tom Donohue of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — plan to spend roughly $1 billion on November’s elections for the White House and control of Congress,” Politico reports. “That total includes previously undisclosed plans for newly aggressive spending by the Koch brothers, who are steering funding to build sophisticated, county-by-county operations in key states… Koch-related organizations plan to spend about $400 million ahead of the 2012 elections — twice what they had been expected to commit.” – Political Wire

  • Right-Wing Billionaires Behind Mitt Romney (and the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money) – In the primary season alone, Romney’s rich friends invested $52 million in his Super PAC, Restore Our Future – a number that’s expected to more than double in the coming months. This unprecedented infusion of money from America’s monied elites underscores the radical transformation of the Republican Party, which has made defending the interests of 0.0001 percent the basis of its entire platform. “Money buys power,” the Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman observed recently, “and the increasing wealth of a tiny minority has effectively bought the allegiance of one of our two major political parties.” In short, the political polarization and gridlock in Washington are a direct result of the GOP’s capitulation to Big Money. – Tim Dickinson | Rolling Stone
  • Mitt Romney is meeting with Sheldon Adelson — the billionaire casino magnate and big Newt-Gingrich supporting super-PAC donor — in Las Vegas on Tuesday, according to CBS News and CNN. …Adelson and his wife, Miriam, gave $20 million to Winning Our Future, the pro-Gingrich super PAC. — HuffPo


President Obama chats in the Blue Room of the White House with author Toni Morrison, who received a Presidential Medal of Freedom yesterday.

Obama honors Bob Dylan, Toni Morrison, Madeleine Albright and more at Medal of Freedom ceremony — In a ceremony honoring 2012 recipients of the Medal of Freedom, President Obama on Tuesday said he was “extremely grateful” to be able to personally thank the honorees “for the great work they have done” in America and worldwide. — CBS News

Obama leads in Michigan, Colorado, and California.

Team Obama shifting focus to Romney’s record as Massachusetts governor — The Obama campaign is opening a new front in its war against GOP rival Mitt Romney, ABC News has learned, with planned attacks to begin this week on Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts and the campaign promises Democrats say he left unfulfilled. Team Obama will point to Romney’s rhetoric on job creation, size of government, education, deficits and taxes during the 2002 gubernatorial campaign and draw parallels with his presidential stump speeches of 2012. The goal is to illustrate that Romney has made the same promises before with unimpressive results, officials say. [...] During a Boston debate, Romney said, “I have experience in the private sector building and creating thousands of good jobs, and I want to bring that skill for you here in Massachusetts” – a theme he regularly reprises today. But the Obama campaign notes, citing a report from the independent fact-checker Politifact, Massachusetts was 47th out of 50 states in job creation under Romney. In manufacturing jobs, Democrats point out, Romney presided over a net loss of 40,000 jobs, a drop of 12 percent according to Labor Department data. — ABC News

image: nomoretexasgovernorsforpresident:

Obama Deputy Campaign Manager Stephanie Cutter released a statement charging Romney with a “complete lack of moral leadership:”  Mitt Romney’s continued embrace of Donald Trump and refusal to condemn his disgraceful conspiracy theories demonstrates his complete lack of moral leadership. Now he’s even standing by silently as Trump assails John McCain’s courage in standing up to the most extreme and hateful voices in the Republican Party—all in order to raise money for himself. If Mitt Romney lacks the backbone to stand up to a charlatan like Donald Trump because he’s so concerned about lining his campaign’s pockets, what does that say about the kind of President he would be? Raw Story

Romney is out of touch and wrong for women — When women hear about Mitt Romney’s plans for women’s health — in his own words — they are appalled. Mitt Romney is out of touch and harmful for women’s health in America. Planned Parenthood Action Fund will be making sure voters know exactly where Mitt Romney stands and will be mobilizing our more than 6 million strong network to fight for women’s health come November. Tell him you’re watching, take the pledge:

Meet The 91-Year-Old WWII Veteran Targeted By Florida’s Voter Purge Three weeks ago, Bill received a letter from Broward County Florida stating “[Y]ou are not a U.S. Citizen” and therefore, ineligible to vote. He was given the option of requesting “a hearing with the Supervisor of Elections, for the purpose of providing proof that you are a United States citizens” or forfeit his right to vote. This decorated World War II veteran is just one of hundreds of fully eligible U.S. citizens being targeted by Governor Scott’s massive voter purge just prior to this year’s election, according to data obtained from Florida election officials by ThinkProgress. The purge list, according to an analysis by the Miami Herald, targets mostly Democrats and Hispanics. Voting rights groups in Florida have asked the Justice Department to investigate, alleging that Scott’s voter purge violates federal law. – Think Progress

  • Rick Scott Will Now Purge Florida Further into Madness — You may recall the 2000 presidential election. Huge and loud? Lots of ill-feeling and incivility abroad in the land? Produced someone who finally got James Buchanan into a photo finish for Worst President Ever? It became a big honking deal at least in part because the Florida Secretary of State, Katherine Harris (R-Max Factor), contracted with an Atlanta company to “purge” the state’s voter rolls of convicted felons and, coincidentally, of anyone with a name that was similar to that of a convicted felon. [...] This time, of course, it’s Governor Rick “Bat Boy” Scott doing all this, and not a presidential candidate’s little brother, and it’s about illegal immigrants and not about convicted felons, and one Secretary of State already has resigned. In related news, Republicans continue their assault on the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which, as we can plainly see by the governor’s actions in Florida, is a superannuated relic of a bygone era. — Charles P. Pierce

Budgeting lies“I actually lay out a plan to get us to a balanced budget within eight years.” Mitt Romney to Mark Halperin  Uh. No. Greg Sargent: The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center has taken a close look at this question. It has determined that relative to current policy — that is, if you keep the Bush tax cuts in place, as Romney wants to do — Romney’s tax cutting plans would increase the deficit by nearly $5 trillion over 10 years. That’s on top of keeping the Bush tax cuts for the rich. Romney has promised to close various loopholes to pay for his tax cuts, but he hasn’t specified which ones. Until he does, the Tax Policy Center concludes, his plan would cost $5 trillion — which would be added, yes, to the deficit. […] Bottom line: relative to current policy, Obama’s plan would reduce the deficit by bringing in $180 billion or more in revenues a year, or approximately $2 trillion over 10 years; Romeny’s plan would increase the deficit by nearly $500 billion a year — $5 trillion over ten years. The Tax Policy Center’s Roberton Williams summed it up perfectly in a quote to me: “The bottom line is that whatever baseline you use, until Romney makes good on his promise to pay for his tax cuts, he would increase the deficit far more than Obama would.” – Bob Cesca

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