- Last Updated: 4:56 AM, April 15, 2012
- Posted: 11:59 PM, April 14, 2012
The 2012 race was shaping up like 2008, with one survey finding Obama enjoying an 18-point margin among women.
Then Rosen dropped her bombshell on CNN. She has close ties to the White House — she visited more than 30 times — yet adamantly defended herself for nearly 24 hours before finally apologizing as the heat kept building.
The way the president, First Lady Michelle Obama and the re-election team ran from Rosen showed the seriousness of the error.
It reinforces the image of elitism among Democrats and gives Romney an opening among working-class women.
As for Clinton, some in her camp say it’s not clear she would say yes even if Obama came begging.
They say she doesn’t want to be vice president and doesn’t see how running on his ticket would help her win the Oval Office in 2016.
Good points — up to a point. But if Obama needs her, she has little choice. If she says no and he loses, she’ll be blamed. If she says no and he wins, he will owe her nothing in 2016.
All he has to do his beg. The odds are growing he will.
Doing what any neighbor would do
Enough about the Buffett Rule. There’s a new standard for leadership in public life. It’s called the Booker Test.
Thank Newark Mayor Cory Booker for raising the bar on how to behave in an emergency. With a neighbor’s house burning and no firetrucks on the scene, Booker ran in to search for a woman who was screaming.
Trailed by aides, he found his neighbor and carried her to safety, dodging flames and falling embers. He suffered burns on one hand and smoke inhalation.
The woman’s nephew called Booker a hero, and he is, but like all real heroes, he shuns the tag.
“There are people who do this every day,” the Democrat said Friday. “There are firefighters who do this every day. I am a neighbor, and Idid what any neighbor would do.”
There you have it: The Booker Test for public service is doing “what any neighbor would do.”
It’s both lofty, and it’s common. How many pols could meet that standard?
And not just during emergencies but in carrying out the routine responsibilities of their jobs. It means having the courage to do what’s right, instead of what’s easy.
Come to think of it, we shouldn’t limit The Booker Test to public officials. It is a good standard for all of us. We should all be good neighbors.
Meanwhile, we can be grateful we have at least one public official who had the courage to act when the stakes were highest. It’s a start.
Hefty wages of political sin
To get a ground-level view of how government distorts the economy, look at the twists and turns in the city’s “living wage” bill. It begins with the massive subsidies City Hall hands out to businesses to get them to come to Gotham, or keep them from leaving.
Unions and liberal pols object, saying many of the jobs created pay too little. So the City Council wants to force any company getting $1 million in subsidies to pay its workers at least $10 an hour, or $11.50 without benefits.
Secret talks over final language are focusing on exemptions. First, one provided that tenants of developers who get the subsidies don’t have to pay more than the minimum wage, now $7.25 an hour. That was a good idea that improved a bad bill and a business group signed on.
Second, the business group insists the mayor be able to exempt any deal from the wage rules. That was a bad idea and an invitation to crony capitalism. Each deal would turn into a lobbying frenzy, complete with campaign contributions and, possibly, bribery.
When the council sensibly dropped that provision, the business group withdrew its support.
Notice that none of this has anything to do with free markets and free enterprise. It’s all about politicians picking winners and losers — with taxpayer money.
We’re just asking
When President Obama pushes tax hikes, he says he’s “asking” the wealthy to pay their fair share. So, if he’s just “asking,” can they say no?
Remind you of any mayor we know?
“Putin Accepts Term Limits, but Not for Himself” read a Wall Street Journal headline from Russia. For New Yorkers, it’s been there, done that.