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Is The Presidential Race Not As Close As It Seems?

Is The Presidential Race Not As Close As It Seems?

Tight. Highly contested. Neck and neck. Changing daily. Heated. We love to use exciting words to play up the political horse race of elections.

But what if it’s really not that exciting? Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibi proposes that actually, this presidential race is pretty hum drum, and it’s just the media trying to hype it up so they have something to cover that is adding any tension to it.

“The apathy factor in American presidential politics has seemingly never been higher,” writes Taibi. “As if to combat this, we’re getting stories now about how this election is closer than you’d think, how Obama is in for a ‘tight race‘ or a ‘fierce fight; with Romney, and how the Republican challenger is ‘closing in‘ to a ‘statistical dead heat.’They’re going to say this, and they may even have numbers to back it up, like this week’s Gallup poll showing Obama with just a two-point lead. But I think it’s a mirage.”

Is the rough and tumble, duking it out image the media presents different than what the candidates themselves are seeing in reality? It could be, which would explain the Obama reelection campaign’s calm attitude. “In a series of interviews with campaign officials in Chicago, it is clear that the entire re-elect operation likes its odds of winning a second term, reports Mark Halperin. “The informal slogan is essentially ‘Be confident, but take nothing for granted.’

So is the media creating drama where there isn’t one? And if so, why? Perhaps its the hours and hours of daily coverage now required in order to keep the mass of cable news channels and talk radio stations flooded with content.

At what point do we stop and ask ourselves, is the news driving the media, or is the media driving the news?

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10:35AM PDT on May 28, 2012

NOTE: Since 1989, Dodd Has Received At Least $165,400 From Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac: $48,500 From PACs And $116,900 From Individuals, Receiving More Than Any Other Politician. (Lindsay Renick Mayer, "Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac Invest In Lawmakers," Center For Responsive Politics' "Capital Eye" Blog, www.opensecrets.org, 9/11/08)

In 2003, Dodd, Chairman Of The Senate Banking Committee, Received Preferential Loans From Countrywide Financial On His Two Homes Which Saved Him $75,000. "Senators Christopher Dodd, Democrat from Connecticut and chairman of the Banking Committee, and Kent Conrad, Democrat from North Dakota, chairman of the Budget Committee and a member of the Finance Committee, refinanced properties through Countrywide's 'V.I.P.' program in 2003 and 2004, according to company documents and emails and a former employee familiar with the loans. ... Senator Dodd received two loans in 2003 through Countrywide's V.I.P. program. He borrowed $506,000 to refinance his Washington townhouse, and $275,042 to refinance a home in East Haddam, Connecticut. Countrywide wai ved three-eighths of a point, or about $2,000, on the first loan, and one-fourth of a point, about $700, on the second, according to internal documents. Both loans were for 30 years, with the first five years at a fixed rate. The interest rate on the loans, originally pegged at 4.875%, was reduced to 4.25% on the Washington home and 4.5% on the Connecticut property by the time the loans were funded. The lower

10:34AM PDT on May 28, 2012

Obama Joined Sen. Dodd - Both Top Recipients Of Fannie And Freddie Contributions - In Opposing Reform Measures And Weakening Existing Regulations. "During this period, Sen. Richard Shelby led a small group of legislators favoring reform, including fellow Republican Sens. John Sununu, Chuck Hagel and Elizabeth Dole. Meanwhile, Dodd -- who along with Democratic Sens. John Kerry, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were the top four recipients of Fannie and Freddie campaign contributions from 1988 to 2008 -- actively opposed such measures and further weakened existing regulation." (Al Hubbard and Noam Neusner, Op-Ed, "Where Was Sen. Dodd?" The Washington Post, 9/12/08)

Sen. Dodd Called The President's Suggestions For Regulations "Inane" And Recommended The President "Immediately Reconsider His Ill-Advised" Proposals. "As recently as last summer, when housing prices had clearly peaked and the mortgage market had started to seize up, Dodd called on Bush to 'immediately reconsider his ill-advised' reform proposals. Frank, now chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, said that the president's suggestion for a strong, independent regulator of Fannie and Freddie was 'inane.'" (Al Hubbard and Noam Neusner, Op-Ed, "Where Was Sen. Dodd?" The Washington Post, 9/12/08)

Dodd Called On The Regulator For Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac To Lift Portfolio Caps. "Both Schumer and Christopher J. Dodd, D-Conn., the chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, hav

10:34AM PDT on May 28, 2012

One month from tomorrow, U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., will be the keynote speaker at the New Hampshire Democratic Party’s annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner. It is a coveted and high-profile role previously filled by such notables as Hillary Clinton and Al Gore. The Democrats’ choice of House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank is, therefore, very revealing.
The party announced Frank as the keynote speaker on Sept. 11 — three days after the U.S. government took control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, costing taxpayers untold billions. That takeover probably could have been prevented had Frank not worked to thwart every attempt to limit the risks taken on by the two government-sponsored mortgage giants.
For 16 years reformers in Congress have tried to improve oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and prevent the government-chartered companies from putting the housing market and the whole economy at risk. All that time, Frank was involved in efforts to block those attempts, and in the last eight years he was a leader of those efforts.
In 2002, shortly before accounting irregularities were exposed at both companies, Frank said, “I do not regard Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as problems,” The Wall Street Journal reported. After the Freddie Mac accounting scandal in 2003, Frank said, “I do not think we are facing any kind of a crisis.”
http://americaswatchtower.com/2008/09/17/barney-frank-and-chuck-schumers-role-the-fannie-mae-f

10:28PM PDT on May 10, 2012

SAVE AMERICA AND HER PEOPLE!! VOTE OBAMA 2012!!

6:02AM PDT on May 10, 2012

@Bill R

Wake up Bill. Explain how two minority congressmen could cause the housing bubble? We had a Republican House, a Republican Senate, a Republican president, Republican economic theory. Two Dems single-handedly changed the country's direction?? What are you smoking?

PRIVATE issuance of mortgage securities doubled at the height of the bubble. You think Dodd and Frank told the financial sector what to do?

Get real

10:13PM PDT on May 9, 2012

Yes, the media almost always creates more drama than actually exists. Why? To increase ratings and revenue for advertisers as much as possible, pure and simple.

6:44PM PDT on May 9, 2012

The apathy is because most are satisfied. Even with the economic problems, most people are not hot-hearted to get out and vote. Remember 2008? We had the fascists again in power and the whole country (and the world) were up in arms to get a candidate to replace that man. Now??? New fascist reign but we sit back, apathetic. Is it because we are truly satisfied, or is it because we are finally defeated by discovery that "the right" and "the left" are just two wings of the same eagle?

6:37PM PDT on May 9, 2012

"“The apathy factor in American presidential politics has seemingly never been higher,”

No one is clamoring to get the president out. Remember the Bush years? The world was in an uproar. It's not apathy, its the Ahhhh... syndrome. You come home from a long day at work and pull a worm bath and get in and say Ahhhhh.........It will take a truly strong candidate to oust the President. (doesn't mean you can shirk your right to vote)

6:37PM PDT on May 9, 2012

"“The apathy factor in American presidential politics has seemingly never been higher,”

No one is clamoring to get the president out. Remember the Bush years? The world was in an uproar. It's not apathy, its the Ahhhh... syndrome. You come home from a long day at work and pull a worm bath and get in and say Ahhhhh.........It will take a truly strong candidate to oust the President. (doesn't mean you can shirk your right to vote)

6:14PM PDT on May 9, 2012

Wake up people the housing bubble was created by Sen. Dodd and Barney Franks when they force banks to make loans that were underwater to begin with. Come on people, President Bush has been out of office for almost 4 years and all the Democrats did with their Filabuster proof, congress was try to pass the largest debt in US History. There was no way a filabuster would work as the Senate and house were loaded with Democrat majorities that could stop any filabuster for two years. Did they create jobs, NO! did they jump start the economy, NO! they wasted their time on distroying our military, farming out the F-33 to Brazil, passing laws for homosexuals, and giving Obama Dictatorial rights to give away millions of dollars to our known and sworn enemies. We are now 13-14 trillioon in debt thank you Obama.

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