Pundit Wire

November 2010

November 1, 2010

“The campaign, and I warn those of you who want be a speechwriter, is the most exhausting ordeal of your life. The candidate gets a little sleep at night, but the speechwriter doesn’t. That’s when he has to work.”

-Ted Sorensen, speechwriter for John F. Kennedy, at the Kennedy Presidential Library, February 19, 2007

November 2, 2010

“An election is a public good, not a private exchange.”

- Charles Kolb, president of the Committee for Economic Development, on the influx of anonymous campaign donations in the midterm election, The Washington Post, Oct. 25, 2010

November 3, 2010

“While our new majority will serve as your voice in the people’s House, we must remember it is the president who sets the agenda for our government. The American people have sent an unmistakable message to him tonight, and that message is: ‘change course.’”

- Rep. John Boehner, (R-OH), November 2, 2010

November 4, 2010

“As I reflect upon the results of the election, it underscores for me that I’ve got to do a better job, as everyone else in Washington does.”

- President Barack Obama, on midterm results, November 3, 2010

November 5, 2010

“The media is more combative an enterprise than ever before—combative with the White House, newspapers literally fighting for their economic lives every day. You have outlets of ideological agendas in the briefing room on both sides who ask questions that fuel the debate.”

- White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer, GQ, Nov. 2010

November 6, 2010

“In American politics, if you don’t want to cooperate with your political opponents — if you prefer to scorn them, shun them or call them names — that means that you don’t, in fact, want to get anything done. Moderates often achieve less than they could. But extremists achieve nothing at all.”

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

November 7, 2010

“There are real consequences if the Democrats and Republicans who come to Washington in January are all running in the same direction – away from the White House and from Congressional leadership.”

- Gwen Ifill, The Rundown, PBS, Oct. 8, 2010

November 8, 2010

“It is like the Big Top Circus. A big show comes to town, and you get everyone excited–and after the election is over, you pack up the tent and head over to the next town.”

- Rudy Lopez, political director, on campaign outreach, Politico, Oct. 21, 2010

November 9, 2010

“Desperation drives politicians to talk about process rather than policy.”

- Columnist George F. Will, Washington Post, Oct. 17, 2010

November 10, 2010

“When you are writing laws you are testing words to find their utmost power. Like spells, they have to make things work in the real world, and like spells, they only work if people believe in them.”

- Hilary Mantel, Wolf Hall, p.470, 2010.

November 11, 2010

“In politics, what distinguishes genius from folly, masterstrokes from blunders? Winning. The planning, time, care and fervor of the mission can be precisely the same for a leader when the result is cataclysm as when it is victory.”

- Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jon Meacham, The Washington Post, Nov. 7, 2010

November 12, 2010

“We have confused meetings, hearings and speechmaking with productivity.”

- Former Sen. Tom Daschle, The Washington Post, Nov. 7, 2010

November 13, 2010

“No party has a monopoly on wisdom.”

– President Barack Obama, on the outcome of the 2010 midterm elections, White House news conference, Nov. 3, 2010, The Washington Post, Nov. 7, 2010

November 14, 2010

“The true center of American politics isn’t found where most of us agree. We fiercely disagree. That’s not a problem. Democracy assumes disagreement. The true center is about how we resolve those disagreements.”

- Former Secretary of Labor and Professor Robert Reich, The Huffington Post, Oct. 31, 2010

November 15, 2010

“We can’t have 500 Congressmen and Senators who think it’s their job to bring home the bacon—and that’s what we’re going to change.”

– Senator Jim DeMint, on legislative earmarks, CBS ‘The Early Show,’ Nov. 3, 2010

November 16, 2010

“If you really want to honor our troops you won’t use them for an easy applause line, that you won’t use them to get votes, or, most insulting to them of all, to divide us into real Americans and fake Americans.”

- Aaron Sorkin, The Huffington Post, Nov. 11, 2010

November 17, 2010

“English is a living language. Shakespeare liked to coin new words too.”

- Sarah Palin, Former Gov. of Alaska and FOX News pundit, on Twitter July 18, 2010, after coining the word “refudiate”

November 18, 2010

“I want to treat my successor the way I’d like to have been treated. I don’t think it’s good for a former president to be out there opining on every darned issue. He’s got a plenty tough job. Trust me. And there’s gonna be plenty of critics and he doesn’t need me criticizing him.”

- Former President George W. Bush, in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, ABC, Nov. 9, 2010

November 19, 2010

“It’s time that we move from good words to good works, from sound bites to sound solutions.”

- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Time, Feb. 20, 2008

November 20, 2010

“Hope is a sentiment, not a strategy, and quickly loses credibility without a road map.”

- William A. Galston, former Clinton advisor and senior fellow at the Brookings Institute, The Washington Post, Nov. 7, 2010

November 21, 2010

“If you’re sick yourself, don’t ask others to take medicine.”

- Yu Jianhua, Chinese commerce ministry spokesman, on the national debt of the United States, at the G20 Seoul Summit, Nov. 11, 2010.

November 22, 2010

“I don’t think you can be against everything just because someone has a “D” by their name and you have an “R” by your name.”

- Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, State of the Union, CNN, Nov. 14, 2010

November 23, 2010

“We’ve demonized taxes. We’ve created almost the idea that they’re a metaphysical evil. It’s rank demagoguery.”

- Reagan budget director David Stockman, 60 Minutes, CBS, Oct. 31, 2010

November 24, 2010

“Everything a government does, the street can undo.”

– Sophie Frebillot, university student, on political protests following the French demonstrations against a bill which would raise the minimum retirement age, New York Times, Oct. 26 2010

November 25, 2010

“It’s time to lay it out on the table and let the American people start to chew on it.”

– Alan Simpson, former Republican Senate leader and co-chair of President Obama’s bipartisan commission on reducing the national debt, on proposing spending cuts and tax increases, New York Times, Nov. 10, 2010.

November 26, 2010

“There’s nothing in the middle of the road except yellow stripes and dead armadillos”

- Jim Hightower, Texas politician, columnist and populist activist, Mother Jones magazine, May 1988

November 27, 2010

“Every four years we say, ‘This is a crucial election,’ and every four years it’s more or less true.”

- Columnist Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 19, 2010

November 28, 2010

“They just don’t make great movie lines the way they used to. They also don’t make great Supreme Court passages the way they used to.”

- Fred R. Shapiro, editor of The Oxford Dictionary of American Legal Quotations, on the prose of the Roberts court, in The New York Times, Nov. 17, 2010

November 29, 2010

“I would never think of crying about any loss of an office, because that’s always a possibility, and if you’re a professional, then you deal with it professionally.”

- Speaker Nancy Pelosi, on John Boehner tearing up on election night, in an interview with New York Times magazine, Nov. 18, 2010.

November 30, 2010

“People across America who subscribe to cable [should] ask for refunds when they turn on C-SPAN and see the Senate sit there, day after day, doing nothing, lurching from filibuster to filibuster.”

- Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Meet the Press, NBC, Nov. 28, 2010