Saturday, July 12, 2008

Race for the White House- 7/12/08

The famed dog days of summer brings headlines galore of events and anecodtes, some important, and some trivial, that political junkies and media types spend much time dwelling on...

Webb says count him out for Veep...Dodd says he is being vetted...McCain raises more money than expected this mont...Obama perhaps raises less than expected.....several national polls show the race has tightened significantly in the past month...Electoral College watch analyses still show Obama holding an edge....there are gaffes galore.... McCain confuses 1960s Pittsburgh Steelers with 1960s Green Bay Packers.... Keith Olbermann thinks this is a huge deal.... the Obamas put their girls on Access Hollywood... most people think it is a cute interview....but some say it is bad to expose their young children to the media spotlight or to be used in the campaign in that way.... so on second thought, Obama says it was a big mistake and will not happen again...Phil Gramm makes completely accurate but very politically dumb comment about U.S. not being in a recession but also uses the term "whiners" in relation to those who think the economy is bad... the media goes nuts... Democrats go nuts (the last word will be a theme this week)... McCain throws Gramm under the Straight Talk Express...Gramm maybe can only hope to now be appointed Ambassador to Belarus... miraciously enough, no Belarussian group or individual gets pissed at McCain for "demeaning them".... Gramm does not take it back.....Jesse Jackson got mad at Obama when a mic was on and he did not realize it.... says Barack been talkin' down to black people and expresses a desire to castrate him...Jesse apologizes... Barack accepts...Obama's nuts are said to remain intact... Jesse Jackson Jr. has the harshest statement of all... throws his own father under the Obama bus...Brett Favre wants to come back but throws the Packers under the Green and Gold Cheesehead bus.... (is that political?)...Bernie Mac tells off color jokes at an Obama event.... people get upset... Obama chastizes him from stage... was Mac thrown under the bus?.... Obama says he is "just messing" with Mac....McCain gets flustered when asked about health coverage for birth control pills and Viagra.....McCain says he has not given it too much thought in the past....that implies that McCain has never used or thought of using Viagra... his campaign needs to push that angle big time....

But as we look back at the Presidential political week that was, all of these things seem to fade into the background, at least to me, with the news this morning of the passing of Tony Snow at the age of 53. Long before he served a relatively short stint as a highly respected White House Press Secretary to President Bush, I know of Snow's career and admired him. Like Tim Russert, Snow was seen as an unflailing optimist who loved his faith, his country, his family, and what he did. Unlike Russert though, to whom death came swiftly, Snow struggled for years in a battle against cancer, but was said to never complain. In that public fight, he surely inspired many and that is part of his legacy. When he was first diagnosed with cancer in 2005, I sent him an email to offer my best wishes. I believe he is the only celebrity type that I have ever bothered to do that with, and I eventually received back a nice form letter response. His cancer seemed to be gone, but then it returned in 2007, while he was working at the White House, and I sent another email. Sadly, there would be no recovery this time.

Tony Snow deserved a better fate but he graced us all with his presence nonetheless and will surely be missed.


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