Tag Archives: POLITICO

Washington Post Locks Down During Anti-Muslim Brotherhood Protest

Washington Post is sold

Washington Post is sold (Photo credit: vpickering)

 

On Thursday, The Washington Post made news of its own.

 

An anti-Muslim Brotherhood protest that started at the White House ended at the Post‘s building, which then went on lockdown.

 

Foreign policy blogger Max Fisher tweeted  a photo of the protesters right outside the lobby doors, writing “Wash Post lobby on lockdown with giant pro-Sissi/anti-Morsi protest out front,” and “this never happened at @TheAtlantic.”

 

Via Politico.

 

 

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Perry Camp Prepares to Explain Candidate’s Downfall

Governor Rick Perry of Texas speaking at the R...

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With a revamped message and a significant TV presence here, Rick Perryis hoping to revive his disappointing presidential campaign with a surprise finish Tuesday.

As they hold out hope that Gov. Perry can find a way back into contention, his advisers have begun laying groundwork to explain how the Texas governor bombed so dramatically.

Their explanations come against the backdrop of a campaign riven by a behind-the-scenes power struggle that took place between the governor’s longtime advisers and a cadre of consultants brought on this fall. In the end, the outsiders won out and, ever since, have marginalized Mr. Perry’s chief strategist while crafting a new strategy in which the Texan has portrayed himself as a political outsider and culture warrior.

In interviews with POLITICO, campaign sources depict a dysfunctional operation beyond saving because of the political equivalent of malpractice by the previous regime.

Mr. Perry’s plunge was the result of his verbal stumbles, notably his “oops” when he couldn’t recall the name of the cabinet department he wants to cut.

Yet the view of the outsiders who took over Perry’s campaign is that the candidate was set up for failure by a group led by Dave Carney, the governor’s longtime political guru, which thought they could run a Presidential campaign like a larger version of a gubernatorial race.

Because Mr. Perry had never been defeated in his career in state politics, his Texas operation projected an air of supreme self-assurance and indifference to outside advice.

Sources close to the operation describe a team that was stunned to arrive in October and find a campaign that wasn’t executing the elements of a Presidential campaign: no polling or focus groups, no opposition research book on their own candidate to prepare for attacks, and debate prep sessions that were barely worth the name.

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Herman Cain Admits to Sexual Harassment Settlements

Herman Cain

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Herman Cain, a leader in the Republican race for the Presidency, acknowledged Monday that he was accused of sexual harassment while chief of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s.

Mr. Cain spent the day in television interviews and news briefings attempting damage control.

He maintained that he had been falsely accused and that investigations at the association corroborated that.

Mr. Cain’s explanations and gaps in the story made it hard to determine the impact of the revelations on his prospects in states like Iowa, whose caucuses are two months away.

Mr. Cain said to the National Press Club in Washington that “I am unaware of any sort of settlement” related to the accusations, which he called “a witch hunt.” In an interview with Greta Van Susteren of the Fox News Channel later, he acknowledged that “there was some sort of settlement or termination,” worth “maybe three months’ salary.”

Politico detailed incidents between Mr. Cain and two women on the staff that led to settlements. The incidents included “conversations allegedly filled with innuendo or personal questions of a sexually suggestive nature.”

In interviews, two people affiliated with the restaurant group said they knew of the second female employee, and she had received a payment related to harassment accusations against Mr. Cain during his tenure as the association’s chief executive.

They said the second woman similarly complained about what she said had been Mr. Cain’s inappropriate conduct. One said she had been taken aback by one interaction while they were traveling. He said he believed harassment was not the only issue involved in the woman’s termination package.

The restaurant association declined to comment on what it termed “personnel matters that allegedly took place nearly 15 years ago.”

With only scant details from the encounters available so far, the already tricky business of divining how the allegations may affect Mr. Cain’s rising political fortunes was made all the more difficult on Monday.

His candidacy has been enigmatic from the start, and his rise to the top in national polls and in surveys of early voting states has upended expectations in the Republican contest. Aides to rivals including former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, who shares top billing with him in polls, and Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, who trails them, have expressed skepticism that Mr. Cain’s campaign can go the distance but have been unable to ignore his strong marks from voters or the appeal of his blunt policy prescriptions.

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Herman Cain Settled a Case (or Two or More) for Sexual Harassment

Herman Cain

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Last evening, Politico published a report that reveals that Herman Cain was accused of inappropriate sexual behavior by at least two female employees when he was head of the National Restaurant Association in the late 1990s. Both women, whose names haven’t been released, signed agreements with the group that gave them financial settlements in return for leaving the association and agreeing not to talk about the circumstances of their departure. Politico has pieced together the nature of the allegations:

The sources – which include the recollections of close associates and other documentation – describe episodes that left the women upset and offended. These incidents include conversations allegedly filled with innuendo or personal questions of a sexually suggestive nature, taking place at hotels during conferences, at other officially sanctioned restaurant association events and at the association’s offices. There were also descriptions of physical gestures that were not overtly sexual but that made women who experienced or witnessed them uncomfortable and that they regarded as improper in a professional relationship.

One woman is said to have received an “unwanted sexual advance” from Cain at a hotel where an association event was held. Other anonymous sources say they were troubled by the effort to keep the women quiet and not addressing the allegations.

Mr. Cain’s response to the allegations has been as eloquent as you’d expect. First, his campaign ignored Politico’s request for comment for four days. Then, his spokesman J.D. Gordon said:

These are old and tired allegations that never stood up to the facts … This was settled amicably among all parties many years ago, and dredging this up now is merely part of a smear campaign meant to discredit a true patriot who is shaking up the political status quo.

Later, Mr. Gordon amended the statement, saying he meant the matter was “resolved,” not “settled” in a legal sense. This week, he told Politico that Mr. Cain was “vaguely familiar” with the situation.

When a Politico reporter approached Mr. Cain on the sidewalk, he avoided answering the questions, saying he has “had thousands of people working for me” throughout the years and couldn’t comment “until I see some facts or some concrete evidence.”

He was then asked, “Have you ever been accused, sir, in your life of harassment by a woman?”

He breathed audibly, glared at the reporter and stayed silent for several seconds. After the question was repeated three times, he responded by asking the reporter, “Have you ever been accused of sexual harassment?”

Well deflected, Mr. Cain! Well deflected.

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Michele Bachmann Hates the Format of the Republican Debates

Official photo of Congresswoman Michele Bachma...

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The debate formats this fall haven’t won raves from some of the candidates – Newt Gingrich being the most vocal among them – and now Michele Bachmann is adding her thumbs-down review, POLITICO‘s Reid Epstein reports.

Appearing on Simon Conway’s WHO radio show in Des Moines, Bachmann said debate moderators are showmen “more interested in television” than issues.

“You have to take a look at the moderators of these debates, and what is it that they are asking and what are the questions,” Bachmann said in response to Conway telling her he was disappointed in her performance during Thursday’s debate in Orlando. “We get in trouble if we don’t answer the questions that they ask us. We don’t control the questions, the moderators do, and they’re more interested in television than they are what the people care about.”

Bachmann said she’d be for radically changing the debate format:

I would love to see a different process at the debates. For one thing, all of the candidates don’t get to answer all of the question and the time limits that we have, its very difficult to do. … It would be great if we could get sit-down interviews for 20 minutes or a half-hour so that we can have the same questions and we each answer those questions to the moderator.

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