Pundit Wire

December 2010

December 1, 2010

“This reorientation away from a celebration of American exceptionalism is misguided and bankrupt.”

- former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, in No Apology: The Case for American Greatness.

December 2, 2010

“You just have to speak the truth and believe in democracy.”

– Luis Urzua, shift foreman, on how he kept peace between the 33 Chilean miners, Time, Oct. 15, 2010.

December 3, 2010

“Somewhere out in this audience may even be someone who will one day follow in my footsteps, and preside over the White House as the President’s spouse. I wish him well!”

- Former First Lady Barbara Bush, in a commencement speech at Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA, June 1, 1990

December 4, 2010

“I think we need to…take a little more out of the hides of guys like me.”

– Warren Buffet, on taxing the wealthy, in his testimony to the Senate Finance Committee, Nov. 14, 2007

December 5, 2010

“The administration needs to choose its confrontational points wisely, and win them. The president is not a warm-up act; he’s the closer.”

- Robert Wexler, former congressman and head of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, New York Times, Nov. 25, 2010

December 6, 2010

“The man is a high-tech terrorist.”

- Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), describing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, on Meet the Press, December 5, 2010

December 7, 2010

“As a purple-hearted veteran of the minority in the House, the Democrats simply don’t have a lot of weaponry. In the same way they were able to overrun Republicans, Republicans can now overrun them.”

- Former Rep. Bill Frenzel (R-MN), NPR, Nov. 9, 2010

December 8, 2010

“I certainly have a lot to lament, as we all do. You know, everybody has their griefs. But the griefs we can fix, shouldn’t we go about fixing them?”

- Elizabeth Edwards, on healthcare, The Rachel Maddow Show, July 22, 2009

December 9, 2010

“How can you love your country if you hate the other half of it?”

- Columnist David Brooks, The New York Times, Nov. 12, 2010

December 10, 2010

“There’s no daylight between the freshmen and any of our members or the leadership.”

- Speaker-elect John Boehner, on the ideological divide between the tea party and the Republican party, The New Yorker, Dec. 6, 2010

December 11, 2010

“I can tweet before going to bed at midnight or 1 and know that they’re up and at ’em, and they’re going to have to respond.”

- Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, on her unconventional communication strategy, New York Times Magazine, Nov. 21, 2010

December 12, 2010

“Even if bipartisanship doesn’t always work, even if “moderate” legislation is often weak, even if centrists sometimes fail completely, it doesn’t matter: We are condemned to cross-party compromise. Without it, our system doesn’t work: That’s what “checks and balances” means.”

- Columnist Anne Applebaum, The Washington Post, Oct. 26, 2010

December 13, 2010

“Washington is a city of young idealists and old cynics.”

- Dick Armey, The New York Times, Nov. 14, 2010

December 14, 2010

“Conflict, when used as a device, makes for good television and bad journalism.”

- Aaron Sorkin, New York magazine, Dec. 5, 2010

December 15, 2010

“A peace deal requires agreements, and you don’t make agreements with your friends, you make agreements with your enemies.”

- Richard Holbrooke on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS,” Oct. 24, 2010.

December 16, 2010

“To deny American exceptionalism is in essence to deny the heart and soul of this nation.”

- Former Arkansas governor, Mike Huckabee, Politico, Aug. 20, 2010.

December 17, 2010

“From the moment Obama lost control of his Blackberry, he started to lose control of his people and his Party.”

– Dr. Philip Neches, Chairman Foundation Ventures LLC, Op-Ed in the Huffington Post, Dec. 3, 2010.

December 18, 2010

No matter how I look at the issue, I cannot escape being troubled by the fact that we have in place a policy which forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens.”

- Adm. Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Feb. 2, 2010.

December 19, 2010

“I had quite a good time governing. I am happy to be here, I suppose when the bullets that are fired are unlikely to hit me, unless they’re just ricocheting.”

- Former President Bill Clinton, in response to whether he preferred being at the White House to govern as President or just to commentate as a former President, to reporters at a White House press conference, as reported in The Washington Post, Dec. 10, 2010.

December 20, 2010

“Everyone knows what a bridge to nowhere is, or an airport that lands no airplanes, or a statue to you — everyone knows that’s bad. It’s easy to say what an earmark isn’t, rather than what an earmark is.”

- Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), Politico, Dec. 9, 2010

December 21, 2010

“Remember the question after Election Day: Can Obama move to the center to win back the independents who had abandoned the party in November? And if so, how long would it take? Answer: Five weeks.”

- Columnist Charles Krauthammer, on Obama’s successful tax deal, The Washington Post, Dec. 17, 2010

December 22, 2010

“The American character is both idealistic and realistic: why can’t our government reflect both?”

- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in remarks to the Senate Council on Foreign Relations, Oct. 31, 2006

December 23, 2010

“He who spends time passing trivial legislation may find himself out of time to read health care bill.”

- Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), mocking a bill honoring Confucius in Congress, The Los Angeles Times, Nov. 25, 2010

December 24, 2010

“Hatred is corrosive of a person’s wisdom and conscience; the mentality of enmity can poison a nation’s spirit, instigate brutal life and death struggles, destroy a society’s tolerance and humanity, and block a nation’s progress to freedom and democracy.”

- Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, in a statement to the Nobel Committee, Dec. 10, 2010

December 25, 2010

“No American political leader should cavalierly – or out of political calculation – dismiss the hard-won ideal of religious freedom that is among our country’s greatest gifts to the world.”

- Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, The Washington Post, Dec. 3, 2010

December 26, 2010

“Skepticism is a virtue. Cynicism is a curse.”

- Tom Sherwood, political reporter for NBC 4 news in DC, on the Kojo Nnamdi Show, WAMU 88.5FM, Dec. 17, 2010

December 27, 2010

“The Republicans are going to have their hand on the computer mouse, and when you have your hand on the computer mouse, you can change a district from a D to an R.”

- Kimball W. Brace, president of Election Data Services, on the coming redistricting, The New York Times, Dec. 24, 2010

December 28, 2010

“The tectonic plates keep moving in American politics…anybody can arise from anywhere and become a leader.”

- Peggy Noonan, journalist and columnist, Meet the Press, Dec. 26, 2010

December 29, 2010

“My job is sort of like the choir director: Try to get everybody to sing as close to the same song as I can.”

- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Politico, Dec. 20, 2010

December 30, 2010

“I have no doubt if I put out the Pentagon Papers in every detail, same as before, I would now be called a terrorist.”

- Daniel Ellsberg, source of the Pentagon Papers, comparing himself with Julian Assange, press conference, Dec. 16, 2010

December 31, 2010

“The best politician isn’t always [the person] who has run the best race, but the one who keeps people out of the race.”

– Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, assistant professor of political science at Northwestern University, on Rahm Emmanuel getting a staggering number of signatures in support of his candidacy for mayor of Chicago, Time, Nov. 16, 2010.