Blog Posts by Holly Bailey

  • Bristol Palin insists tea party isn’t keeping her on ‘Dancing with the Stars’

    bristol dancingBristol Palin is good and sick of people implying that her mom's political supporters are the only reason she hasn't been eliminated from "Dancing with the Stars."

    In an interview with E! News, Palin insisted it's hard work that's kept her in the game and not some tea party conspiracy. "I work my butt off here," Palin said. "I rehearse every day. I am totally out of my element here. I think I deserve to be here."

    Besides, she added, "Think of all the people out there who hate my mom. It can work both ways with me being Sarah Palin's daughter."

    Her comments come as Jezebel's Tracie Egan Morrissey finds more evidence of apparent electronic ballot-stuffing by Sarah Palin's conservative backers — though, in fairness, most rabid DWTS fans find similar ways to boost their favorites on the show. Palin, who posted her highest scores of the season on Monday night's episode, faces an elimination vote tonight.

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  • Top RNC aide quits, trashing Steele’s leadership

    steele gentryHere's something that won't help Michael Steele's bid to win a second term as chairman of the Republican National Committee: A top RNC aide quit Tuesday, accusing Steele of badly mismanaging the party and leaving the GOP in a weakened state ahead of 2012.

    According to Politico's Jonathan Martin, Gentry Collins, the RNC's political director, sent a resignation letter to RNC members laying out in explicit detail all of the drama that has engulfed Steele's RNC tenure. Among other things, he accused Steele of leading the party into enormous debt ahead of the 2012 presidential election, he disputed Steele's claims the RNC had sent that money to the states.

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  • Cheney, noticeably thinner, lauds Bush at library groundbreaking

    cheney bush

    Former Vice President Dick Cheney looked thinner at a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday in Dallas for George W. Bush's planned presidential library. It was the first time Cheney has been seen at a major public event since he underwent surgery in July to install a heart pump implant.

    The former VP, on hand to introduce Bush at the ceremony, made no mention of the quarrels Bush wrote of in his recently released memoir, "Decision Points." Rather, he praised Bush as a president who handled his job "with courage, with clarity and with strength of heart."

    Though Cheney looked gaunt and somewhat frail compared with his days in the White House, he was his usual self, even managing to get in a dig at President Obama's stimulus plan at the ceremony. "This may be the only shovel-ready project in America," Cheney joked at one point, looking over his shoulder at Bush. According to the Bush foundation, the estimated $300 million library is already fully funded with private donations.

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  • Harry Reid is reappointed Senate majority leader

    dem leadAs expected, Senate Democrats voted to re-elect Harry Reid as majority leader Tuesday morning. Illinois Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin was reappointed as assistant majority leader. New York's Charles Schumer, who was  the No. 3 senator in the last Congress, retains his leadership position but, thanks to Reid, will have more power overseeing the party's policy and messaging. (The lesson here: You can never go wrong with a Netflix gift subscription.)

    On the Republican side, the leadership also remained unchanged: Mitch McConnell retained his title of GOP leader, with Jon Kyl of Arizona and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee re-elected as his deputies.

    (Photo of, from left, Schumer, Reid and Durbin: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

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  • Still no love lost between Lisa Murkowski and Sarah Palin

    murkowski and palin

    It's no secret that Lisa Murkowski and Sarah Palin simply can't stand each other. One of the biggest political risks the former Alaska Gov. Palin took in the 2010 campaign was trying to oust the senator, her longtime rival. Now looking in good shape to win re-election as a write-in candidate, Murkowski is striking back at Palin, again.

    In an interview with CBS's Katie Couric, Murkowski said she could never support Palin for president because she lacks "those leadership qualities, that intellectual curiosity" necessary to build good policy.

    "She was my governor for two years, for just about two years there, and I don't think that she enjoyed governing," Murkowski told CBS. "I don't think she liked to get down into the policy. I want somebody who goes to bed at night and wakes up in the morning thinking about how we're going to deal with our national security issues, how we're going to deal with our economy, how we're going to deal with providing better education."

    You can watch video of the Murkowski interview here.

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  • LAST TICKET: Crist told Dole he’d caucus with the GOP; Gingrich defends Romney

    Here's the stories we took note of today but didn't give the full blog treatment:

    • Charlie Crist won Bob Dole's support in Florida's Senate race by suggesting he'd caucus with Republicans. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

    • Newt Gingrich defends Mitt Romney on health care. (The Brody Report)

    • Speaking of, please quit asking Newt if he's running for president. Pretty please? (Salon)

    • Um, no, Sen. Lisa Murkowski did not watch "Sarah Palin's Alaska." (CNN)

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  • Obama praises McConnell’s switch on earmarks

    mitch obamaWho says President Obama and the Republicans can't get along?

    As The Ticket reported earlier today, Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell reversed course and announced he will support a ban on earmarks. In response, President Obama issued a statement saying that he welcomed McConnell's decision on "wasteful earmark spending." But, Obama added, "we can't stop with earmarks as they only represent part of the problem."

    You can read the full Obama statement after the jump:

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  • Sarah Palin coins ‘word of the year,’ books boffo cable debut

    palin ratingsSarah Palin's reality show scored huge ratings for its premiere Sunday night, while the guardians of usage at the New Oxford American Dictionary awarded the former Alaska governor the higher-brow distinction of coining 2010's "word of the year" — "refudiate" — via her Twitter account.

    According to TLC, roughly 4.96 million people tuned in to watch the first episode of "Sarah Palin's Alaska." That's the biggest premiere in the channel's history.

    And as if the ratings triumph weren't enough, today the New Oxford American Dictionary declared "refudiate" the top word in 2010 — a verb that Palin apparently invented.

    [Photos: More images of Sarah Palin]

    The former governor used the word in a Twitter message last summer, calling on "peaceful Muslims" to "refudiate" a planned mosque near the site of the 9/11 attacks in New York. When critics pounced on the made-up verb, Palin deleted the Tweet and replaced it with one that called on Muslims to "refute" the site — even though that usage made no sense, either, since to refute is to prove something to be untrue.

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  • Joe Biden tries to sell successor on daily Amtrak commute

    biden amtrakIf this whole vice-presidency thing doesn't work out for Joe Biden, maybe he could get a job at Amtrak. Biden, who took a two-hour train from Delaware to Washington almost every day during his 36 years in the Senate, is pushing his newly elected successor in the chamber to do the same.

    "He said [to] make it as physically uncomfortable as possible to spend the night," said Chris Coons (who is being sworn in Monday as Delaware's new senator), as reported by CNN's Evan Glass. "Don't get a nice place, don't get a nice room. … There will always be pressures to stay," Coons says Biden told him.

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  • Keith Richards disses Mike Huckabee’s guitar skills

    huck guitarMike Huckabee has made no secret of his status as a Keith Richards superfan. As one of his final acts as governor of Arkansas, Huckabee pardoned the Rolling Stones guitarist for a 1975 reckless driving conviction in the state. Last year, the bass-playing '08 presidential contender listed Richards at the top of his list of dream guests for his Fox News show, "Huckabee."

    That's why this might sting a little, Governor.

    In his new autobiography, "Life," Richards kicks off Chapter 1 with a retelling of his infamous run-in with Arkansas police officers, who'd pulled him over for driving while under the influence. The band's attorney, an Arkansas native, got Richards off with a slap on the wrist: a misdemeanor reckless driving charge, even though the car Richards was driving was also full of drugs. The charge, Richards writes, ended up being "nothing more than a parking ticket."

    That leads him to conclude that Huckabee's 2006 pardon was unnecessary. "There was nothing to pardon," Richards writes. "There was no crime on the slate in Fordyce, but that didn't matter, I got pardoned anyway." Rather, the guitarist writes, it was Huckabee's "political ambitions" that led to the pardon.

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