Michelle Obama has joined the social media photo-sharing website Pinterest. On Wednesday morning she pinned 12 images on the service, grouped in three categories: “Around the White House,” “Great Memories,” and “Father’s Day.” Or rather, she pinned eight of the images, and the Obama reelection campaign put up the rest. The Obama 2012 staff is going to run the site with Mrs. Obama’s input. Her personal pins will be signed with her initials, “mo.”
Some of the pictures are standard publicity fare. There is Mrs. Obama winning a tug-of-war with talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel, while a portrait of George Washington looks on. There's Mrs. Obama digging up what appear to be peppers from the White House garden. There’s the Obama family’s official 2011 portrait.
But there is also some stuff that might come under the heading of pretty personal blasts-from-the-past. There’s a photo from 1992 of the future first lady hugging the future president, her eyes on the camera, his staring off... somewhere. So young, they look. In the Father’s Day category there’s a rare shot of the couple kissing, and a miniature-golf action shot.
What’s Mrs. Obama doing, joining Pinterest now? Keeping up with Ann Romney, for one thing. Mrs. Romney has been on the site for a while, and has a nice, homey pinboard that’s heavy on recipes (Meat loaf cake? What’s that?), flag shots, and family photos.
The current first lady is also just augmenting her overall social media push. She’s got more than 1 million followers on Twitter (Her latest tweet: a twitpic of a sacked-out Bo) and 7 million “likes” on Facebook.
But what’s really behind all this is the effort by Obama’s reelection team to leverage the first lady’s popularity as much as possible as early as possible in the 2012 race. It’s a multipronged strategy: social media, her new book about the White House gardening and healthy eating, and traditional media appearances pegged to the book’s publication.
Oh, you thought it was just a coincidence that “American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America” came out about the time the GOP picked its nominee and the general election began? Toughen up – the campaign’s just getting started.
Remember, Mrs. Obama’s poll numbers are much better than her husband’s. An April Marist survey found that 65 percent of registered voters had a positive view of the first lady, for instance. Only 23 percent had an unfavorable opinion.
“The first lady may be the president’s best asset,” said Lee Miringoff, director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, when the poll came out. “With numbers like these, expect her to have a high profile on the campaign trail.”
Voilà, Pinterest. The Father’s Day category on her new pinboard invites viewers to sign a Father’s Day card for the president. Click through, and it further invites you to contribute to the campaign.
With both sides eschewing public financing for the fall campaign, they are in a dollars race to amass enough cash to counter the other guy’s message. Expect more of the same, from both sides, in months to come.
We ask that question because Congressman Paul’s campaign website in recent days has posted several pieces that discuss political endorsements in a somewhat defensive manner. In one, campaign blogger Jack Hunter talks about libertarian founding father Murray Rothbard’s 1992 endorsement of President George H. W. Bush.
Rothbard’s libertarian principles did not evaporate because of the “mere act of endorsing,” writes Hunter.
As to the current Paul campaign, “any endorsements made or not made are done with our movement’s goals and efforts within the GOP in mind, whether some understand this or not,” according to Hunter.
That did not mean Paul shared these lawmakers’ political beliefs. Their elections as speaker were inevitable, writes Hunter, and Paul wanted to work within the Republican Party to push his own issues.
“Ron Paul is a member in good standing of the Republican Party. Ron Paul’s message is that he is against his party when it’s wrong,” writes Hunter.
Of course, both these pieces might really be about son Sen. Rand Paul, not Paul pere himself. The second in particular mentions Rand at length.
Senator Paul endorsed Romney in an appearance on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show last week – a move that infuriated many Paul true believers. They burned up Twitter and Paul discussion boards with anger over what they saw as a betrayal.
Given that Rand’s dad technically is still running for president, the timing of the announcement indeed was a little ... odd. So was the manner in which Senator Paul implied that the announcement was some sort of joining of the Paul and Romney clans. He talked about “a kinship between our families.”
The Ron Paul campaign appeared taken aback by the degree of supporter animosity to this move. So Hunter’s works might be an attempt to calm those roiling digital waters.
Plus, a Ron Paul endorsement of Romney would be out of step with much of Paul’s past behavior. He famously refused to endorse Sen. John McCain in 2008, and bolted the party entirely in 1987, running as a third party candidate on the Libertarian ticket. We still think it’s likely that Paul senior will just strike a sort of non-aggression pact with the Romney forces that does not include explicit backing. Rand’s endorsement might have been as far as the Paul team is willing to go.
But look – Mitt Romney is going to control the GOP convention in Tampa. In the modern era nominees meld their campaigns with the party apparatus prior to the meeting, then treat it like an opportunity for a multi-day advertisement. It’s not primarily a forum for political debate.
Will Romney demand a Paul endorsement in return for, say, allowing Paul a prime speaking slot? That’s certainly possible. In return, Paul could just state the obvious – Romney is the GOP pick, and he (Paul) would prefer Romney triumph over President Obama. That could be an endorsement that doesn’t contain the word “endorse.”
Does Mitt Romney want to reduce the number of firefighters, police, and teachers in America? That’s what the Obama reelection campaign is charging. They’ve got a new ad out that asserts local government jobs shrank dramatically in Massachusetts while Mr. Romney was governor, and that he plans similar reductions if he wins in November.
“Mitt Romney’s economic plan? He wants to cut jobs for firefighters, police, and teachers,” says the campaign spot.
Romney’s not turning the other cheek on this one. On Tuesday, Romney said in a Fox News appearance that this charge is “completely absurd.”
Hmmm. The two sides are pretty far apart on this question. Who is right here? What’s the context?
We’d say this: A Romney statement this week did imply that he believes the nation needs fewer of these particular categories of public servants. But the comment might be better understood as a variation on the continuing Republican theme that government as a whole needs to be smaller and less intrusive in US life.
First, the original statement: At a campaign stop last Friday Romney seized on President Obama’s controversial statement that the private sector is “fine” and that employment as a whole is soft because public sector jobs are down.
Romney said of Mr. Obama that “he says we need more firemen, more policemen, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.”
Generally speaking, Republicans are for smaller government at all levels. But they don’t typically move on to imply that the nation needs fewer of its more popular types of public servants – particularly those involved in public safety.
Wisconsin’s Republican Gov. Scott Walker, who just survived a recall attempt sparked by his bill that stripped many public sector workers of bargaining rights, made just that distinction. Police and firefighters were exempt from his cutbacks.
That’s why Governor Walker distanced himself from Romney’s remarks in an appearance Sunday on CBS’s "Face the Nation." His crackdown “allowed us to protect firefighters, police officers, and teachers. That’s not what I think of when I think of big government.”
Now, Romney is literally correct to say that Washington doesn’t hire firefighters, etc. Those are local or state employees.
But Obama’s stimulus bills contained billions in subsidies for state and local government to keep their employees on the job. Much of that stimulus spending has run out, which is one reason why public sector employment is declining.
That’s what we think this whole economic discussion of recent days is mostly about. Obama would prefer that Congress pass more stimulus spending to help heat up public sector hiring. Romney thinks that is failed Keynesianism that just runs up debt. This is a basic distinction between the Democratic and Republican parties.
In closing, we’ll make a couple of other points. Walker may not think of firefighters, police officers, and teachers as part of big government, but they are. As liberal economist Paul Krugman pointed out Tuesday on his blog, “teachers” and “protective services” together account for the majority of state and local employment.
However, despite public sector job losses, the unemployment rate for government workers is low, writes conservative American Enterprise Institute fellow Marc Thiessen. It’s just 4.2 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Contrast this with the unemployment rate for construction, which is 14.2 percent, or with the rate for leisure and hospitality services, which is 9.7 percent.
Message to President Obama: Stop saying the economy is improving. People don't believe you.
That's the gist of a new memo from Democratic strategists Stan Greenberg and James Carville, who urge Mr. Obama to focus on the future – and what he will do to help the middle class going forward – rather than try to talk up what he's been doing for the past four years.
"We will face an impossible headwind in November if we do not move to a new narrative," they write, adding: "It is elites who are creating a conventional wisdom that an incumbent president must run on his economic performance – and therefore must convince voters that things are moving in the right direction. They are wrong, and that will fail."
While the timing of the memo's release is probably a coincidence, it just happens to come on the heels of Obama's much-discussed remark last Friday that the private sector is "doing fine." Republicans naturally pounced on that comment – Mitt Romney's campaign immediately turned it into a derisive web video – forcing Obama to later clarify that "it is absolutely clear that the economy is not doing fine."
Still, it's a striking bit of advice. Top Democrats are essentially telling Obama to stop trying to defend his record on the economy, because voters aren't buying it. As they put it: "[Voters] know we are in a new normal where life is a struggle – and convincing them that things are good enough for those who have found jobs is a fool's errand."
The question is, is this really possible? Can Obama look the electorate in the eye, admit that he knows the economy is terrible and the future looks frightening – and yet somehow convince them he deserves another four years?
It may be a stretch. But at this point, he may have no other choice. Ever since the dismal May jobs report, it's been increasingly clear that this anemic recovery may be flat-out un-spinnable. The grim economic news continued Monday with a report from the Federal Reserve that Americans' median net worth shrank from $126,000 in 2007 to $77,000 in 2010.
And while the faltering economy may ultimately doom the president no matter what, there's probably no upside to trying to make things sound better than they are and coming across as "out of touch" (see: Bush, George H. W.).
Still, Obama will also need to make a couple other arguments for this strategy to work.
First, he will need voters to continue to blame the recession on past administrations and past policies – which polls show most voters still do. As long as the public doesn't think Obama is responsible for creating the economic mess, he may have more latitude when it comes to describing current conditions honestly.
More importantly, however, Obama will also need to disqualify Mr. Romney. If the argument to the electorate is essentially, we're in a big, terrible hole, and it's probably going to take a while for us to get out – then Obama needs to make sure the public doesn't buy Romney's argument that he could turn things around more quickly.
That's why the Obama campaign is continuing to pound Romney's record as Massachusetts governor. A new ad today attacks Romney for making Massachusetts "No. 1 in state debt" and "47th in job creation."
The danger, of course, is that the voters will wind up seeing the choice as a lesser-of-two-evils, "without much feeling of hope," as Mr. Greenberg and Mr. Carville write.
They argue that Obama can actually provide that sense of hope once more by focusing on the future and what he will do for the middle class. If he can do that, it would be a truly impressive political feat. But if he can't, it may be a lesser-of-two-evils campaign.
President Obama at his press conference on Friday said that “the private sector is doing fine” when discussing US economic prospects. Republicans quickly slammed him for underplaying the nation’s job woes.
Later in the day, Mr. Obama qualified his statement, saying "it is absolutely clear the economy is not doing fine." But as to his narrower point about the private sector, who is right? This happens to be a data-rich subject. Is the private sector OK or is it not?
Two points: 1) it depends what the meaning of the word “fine” is, and 2) it depends on how you judge the remark in its full context, which included Obama asserting that the real problem is a downturn in public sector, not private sector, employment.
As to the first point, Obama found few defenders on Friday who agreed that the private sector was fine, if by "fine" one means as healthy and vibrant as it ought to be. The numbers here are obvious. A bleak employment report last week showed that the US added 69,000 jobs in May, which was not enough to keep the unemployment rate from rising to 8.2 percent.
“Yes, the private sector is creating jobs – but not nearly enough to get back to normal unemployment,” wrote political scientist Jonathan Bernstein Friday on his A Plain Blog About Politics.
But if by “fine” you mean moving in the right direction, that’s a different story. The private sector is in positive jobs territory, having created an average of 160,000 jobs per month in 2012. It’s in positive territory for Obama’s time in office, as well. The US has created on net 780,000 private sector jobs since February of 2009, points out Ezra Klein on the Washington Post’s Wonkblog.
“The private sector’s job creation machine is basically working, even if it would be nice to see it working faster,” Klein wrote on Friday.
The overall job numbers remain weak because public sector employment – federal, state, and local jobs – has actually been shrinking. Obama’s stimulus package contained $54 billion in aid to states to help them keep teachers, police, firefighters, and other less popular government bureaucrats in their posts. That money has now been spent and lay-offs due to government belt-tightening have accelerated.
“In the Bush era, the public sector had added nearly 1 million jobs. In the Obama era, it’s down 600,000 jobs and counting,” wrote Slate political blogger David Weigel Friday.
This brings us to point No. 2, context. The fuller text of Obama’s quote was this: “The truth of the matter is that, as I said, we’ve created 4.3 million jobs over the last ... 27 months, over 800,000 just this year alone. The private sector is doing fine. Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government, oftentimes cuts initiated by ... governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in the past from the federal government.”
Replace “doing fine” with “growing,” and Obama’s quote becomes less controversial. But “fine” is in there, and Republicans pounced on the misstep, as Democrats have on some Romney statements that look worse when shorn of surrounding words. (Remember “I like firing people”?)
On the blog of the conservative American Enterprise Institute, editor James Pethokoukis wrote that job growth remains much lower than the 1983-84 Ronald Reagan economic recovery from recession. Private sector GDP rose just 2.6 percent in the first quarter of this year, and only 1.2 percent last year.
The stock market is down 7 percent since early April and real take-home pay is down over the past year.
“No, Mr. President, the private sector isn’t doing fine at all,” wrote Pethokoukis in response to Obama’s press conference remark.
"My question to the president would be: Are you kidding? Did you see the jobs numbers that came out last week?" House majority leader Eric Cantor (R) of Virginia told reporters. "The private sector is not doing fine."
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Later, the president walked back his remarks during a brief appearance with the president of the Philippines. "It is absolutely clear the economy is not doing fine,” Obama said.
But what, in fact, did Mr. Obama say and – retracted or not – how is it likely to play in the ongoing standoff with Republicans in Congress?
"We've created 4.3 million jobs over the last ... 27 months, over 800,000 just this year alone. The private sector is doing fine," he said in a press conference Friday. "Where we're seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government, oftentimes cuts initiated by, you know, governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in the past from the federal government and who don't have the same kind of flexibility of the federal government in dealing with fewer revenues coming in."
The latter half of the president's statement points to what Obama would like Congress to do to help support the economy: Pass his plan to provide more federal funding to state and local governments to hire or maintain public employees such as teachers and firefighters. But the chief thrust of his statement was to outline troubles in the European economy and how they are negatively affectng America's economic fortunes.
Republicans slammed Obama for not taking responsibility for ongoing economic turbulence.
Mr. Boehner said the House would be doing two things to help solve America's economic problems in coming weeks: voting to extend all the Bush tax cuts and moving to repeal the entirety of the president's signature health-care reform law.
Such actions would lift uncertainty in the US economy, said both Republican House leaders. The economy generated a meager 69,000 new jobs in May, and the US Labor Department recently revised prior months' gains downward.
Of course, just because both parties rattle their political sabres at each other about taking action doesn't mean anything significant will get done. Obama has insisted that the Bush tax cuts be extended only for those making less than $250,000 a year, while congressional Republicans insist on an extension of lower taxes for everyone. Obama pushes more federal funds for state and local governments, while Republicans argue the already $1 trillion-plus annual deficit can't stand any more spending.
With critical policy lines drawn so starkly – and elections pending – there's little prospect of a grand bargain on jobs or the economy, at least in the short term.
And so Obama's description of America's role vis-à-vis troubled European governments – "what we can do is to prod, advise, suggest" – goes for Republicans in Congress, as well. Both sides will do plenty of prodding and advising but, almost all observers agree, little compromising to get things done before November's elections.
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Mitt Romney and the Republican Party easily raised more cash in May than did President Obama and the Democrats, $76 million to $60 million, according to figures released Thursday by the presidential candidates’ campaigns.
It’s possible that this gap will appear narrower after the campaigns file official reports with the Federal Election Commission later this month. It’s unclear, for example, what percentage of Mr. Romney’s haul went to party committees that by law must spend some of their money on congressional elections.
But the $16 million gap remains large enough to call into question Mr. Obama’s reputation as the master fundraiser of the presidential race. And it cheered Republicans who have seen Romney quickly gather the party around him and begin to mount an aggressive general election campaign.
How did Romney do it? After all, in April the presumptive nominee’s campaign raised only about $11 million, to $25 million for Obama. (These figures don’t include party committees.)
For one thing, Romney’s actually pretty good at raking in campaign cash. With deep ties to the finance industry and a prosperous Mormon constituency, he was easily the richest of the GOP contenders throughout the long primary campaign.
Second, that primary campaign is over. The flow of Republican contributions had been divided among numerous candidates. That flow has now coalesced into a single stream pouring into Romney’s coffers. Without the need to contest the remaining primary states, Romney had lots of time to hold May fundraisers.
Third, Romney is benefitting from a rally-around effect. Now that he’s the obvious nominee, he has gained in the polls, reflecting his new, higher stature. Similarly, he’s received a burst of money from contributors who had yet to max out on legal limits. That’s a jolt of cash he may find hard to duplicate in coming months.
Looking ahead, the campaign will feature not just a battle of contrasting candidates, but also a battle of contrasting fundraising styles. Romney gets a much higher percentage of his money in the form of relatively large donations. Through April, only 10 percent of his contributions had come from small donors who gave $200 or less.
By contrast, 43 percent of Obama’s money through April came in increments of less than $200. This may mean he has a fundraising base to which he can continue to appeal, because many donors haven’t hit their $2,500 limit.
And as a coda here we’ll note that there is some question about how much this fundraising matters. Elections, particularly presidential elections, are not decided by the hurly-burly of fundraising and campaigns at all, many political scientists say.
As Jennifer Victor, a George Mason University political scientist, writes on the new political party blog Mischiefs of Faction, macroeconomic trends remain the best indicators of who wins presidential contests.
“Typically, the rate of change in third quarter GDP or unemployment are likely to be much better predictors of the election outcome than any amount spent by any group on campaigning,” writes Ms. Victor.
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“My side picked a fight they shouldn’t have picked,” Congressman Frank told The Hill on Wednesday.
Frank is retiring after 30+ years in Congress so doesn’t have to worry if he offends union leaders and other party powerbrokers. (Not that he ever did. Worry, that is.) But he’s not the only Democratic eminence grise to criticize the Badger State recall.
Yes, Rendell’s out of office and also has a history of contradicting his party’s official line. Plus hindsight is 20/20 and all that. Walker’s convincing victory has those on the left side of the US political spectrum casting about for something or someone to blame.
But Frank and Rendell are echoing points made by pundits from across the political spectrum. The bottom line: some aspects of the reelection fight pointed toward a Democratic loss entirely foretold.
The first was the “recall” nature of the election. It was only the third time in US history a sitting governor faced such a vote. (If you didn’t know that already you didn’t watch any cable news coverage of this event.)
Turns out Wisconsin voters thought a sitting official shouldn’t be recalled except in a dire circumstance. Walker’s successful effort to strip most public unions of bargaining rights did not qualify as such.
As Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. noted yesterday, exit polls showed that only about a quarter of those who voted thought a recall was appropriate for any reason. Roughly sixty percent said a recall should be used only in case of official misconduct.
“Most voters, in other words, rejected the very premise of the election in which they were casting ballots,” writes Dionne.
Plus, the recall election was a rerun of the state’s 2010 gubernatorial race, with Walker facing the same opponent, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. The “Groundhog Day” aspect of the vote only added to voter perceptions that it was somehow a distortion of the normal political process, according to Rendell.
“If we’re [peeved off] at what a person does in office, the answer is to beat them when they’re up for reelection,” said Rendell.
Walker beat Barrett by 53 to 46 percent, almost exactly the same margin by which he won in 2010.
In Wisconsin, lawmakers on Wednesday said that their state’s recall process was a loser in the vote along with Barrett. Democrats also complained about an aspect of Wisconsin recall law which allows the recall target to raise an unlimited amount of money for a period of time during the campaign. It was this legal quirk, more than the fundraising implications of the “Citizens United” Supreme Court case, which led to the GOP vastly outspending Democrats in the lead-up to Tuesday’s vote.
“I think it’s pretty safe to say there was a substantial anti-recall faction that played a big part Tuesday,” Wisconsin state Sen. Tim Cullen (D) told the Appleton Post Crescent. “This is something we will have to think about going forward, how the state handles recalls, especially the part that allows incumbents to raise unlimited amounts of money.”
On his show Wednesday, Mr. Limbaugh talked about this week’s Obama fundraising sweepstakes for dinner with the first couple, Vogue editor Anna Wintour, and actress Sarah Jessica Parker. He played the ads Ms. Wintour and Ms. Parker have cut to promote Obama’s candidacy.
Then El Rushbo opined that this coziness with the New York celebritocracy shows how remote Obama is from ordinary people.
Ouch. Limbaugh is not just calling Obama a celebrity here. He’s calling him a lightweight. Can you picture Kim Kardashian reading a CBO report? Only if each reference to “deficit” were replaced with the word “shoes."
You’ll notice that Limbaugh did not call him “Barack Clooney.” That would have left a different impression. More ... suave.
Well, we’ve got a couple of opinions about this. First, it appears that Limbaugh has gotten whatever talking point memo the Republican National Committee sent out for the week. The RNC and Romney surrogates have been hitting the “out-of-touch-celebrity” theme hard. The RNC even produced its own Web ad on the subject.
Second, we’re not sure this approach works for the GOP. Romney supporter Donald Trump, who knows a thing or two about the limelight, has said as much, pointing out that Republicans are just making Obama look good in comparison with the less-smooth presumptive GOP nominee.
John McCain tried it, and it didn’t help him.
On the whole, voters still personally like Obama more than Romney. Romney’s favorables have gone up as he gains full nominee stature, but Obama’s are still 8 to 10 percentage points higher, depending on the poll.
Plus, voters tend to judge Obama as being more prone to understanding their problems. As George Washington University political scientist John Sides wrote earlier this year, Romney has an “empathy gap” of about 10 percentage points, with voters picking Obama as the person who “cares about people like me."
Celebrities are above all that, aren’t they?
In any case, Mr. Sides notes that all this stuff about the personality of presidential candidates is kind of a sideshow, when compared with the electoral effects of voter perception of the economy, and whether or not it is improving. Republicans might be better off to focus like a laser on jobs, as opposed to the president’s supposed resemblance to a reality TV star whose latest accomplishment was winning a record for world’s shortest marriage.
“In general, be wary of any claim that there is a single path to victory, particularly if that path involves a candidate’s personality,” wrote Sides in the New York Times FiveThirtyEight polling blog.
First lady Michelle Obama was on the “Late Show with David Letterman” Tuesday night in honor of the publication of her new book, “American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden.” She delivered the Top 10 list: Top 10 Fun Facts About Gardening. How did it go? Was she funny?
Well, you can watch it here, and make your own conclusion. From our point of view, she was funny, since the Letterman writers could wring a laugh out of anything. (Our favorite was No. 4: “If you have an actual green thumb, it might be scurvy.”) But she wasn’t FUNNY, if you know what we mean. The chuckle-meter wasn’t set to “stun.”
Mainly that’s because gardening is not inherently humorous. Names for Newt’s moon colony, Joe Biden nicknames – those are topics with comedy juice. Gardening is all heirloom mulch and where-should-we-put-the-salvia. It’s earnest and good for you. That’s hard to mock. Or hard to mock without going too far. Mrs. Obama might as well have been doing “Top 10 Fun Facts about Fresh Air.”
(OK, we did like the bit about “Weed Whacker One.” But “gardening was invented in 1822 by Albert Gardener”? That’s too subtle for our taste.)
Also, the first lady can’t just let fly with the yuks. She’s got a positive, restrained image to uphold. There’s a reason she’s got the highest approval rating in the White House – 65 percent in the latest CNN poll. Her husband is probably wondering if he can dump Joe and run her as VP.
That’s probably why the list touched only tangentially on fighting obesity. (No. 7: “In his lifetime, the average American will eat half a radish.”) New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposal to ban big sodas has become kind of a partisan flash point. Conservatives see it as an example of big government going too far. Liberals see it as an example of right-size government going too far. A poll shows a majority of New Yorkers oppose the move. So the whole issue of the government telling you what to consume is fraught, at the moment.
In the past, Mrs. Obama’s “Let’s Move” initiative to get kids to exercise has drawn some grumbling about nannyism from the right. So she has had to be careful what she says about sodageddon. She has said she rejects a “one-size-fits-all” approach to fighting fat, and thus would not support a federal soda ban. But at an event on Tuesday she added that “we applaud anyone who’s stepping up to think about what changes work in their communities.”
So that’s why the Letterman list wasn’t “Top 10 New Manhattan Soda Sizes.” Got any ideas for that one? (Or for Joe Biden nicknames?) Leave them in comments below.
IN PICTURES: The White House vegetable garden