A veritable royal flush of Republicans will be in Las Vegas on Tuesday when presumptive presidential nominee Mitt Romney journeys to Nevada for a pair of private events, one at a local furniture manufacturer, the second at Donald Trump’s opulent International Hotel and Tower for a fundraiser where tickets will fetch $2,500 to $10,000. Gleeful journalists pined for news that Mr. Romney would distance himself from Mr. Trump after the real estate kingpin recently reignited the “birther” issue surrounding President Obama’s origins.
Also of note: Former Republican candidate Newt Gingrich will make an inaugural appearance with his onetime rival. Whether billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson will attend is unknown. He once openly admired Mr. Gingrich’s “boldness” and contributed mightily to his campaign; Mr. Adelson also has mentioned he’s willing to donate up to $100 million to Republican causes. So we’ll see.
Meanwhile, there’s a raffle afoot to win a swanky supper with both Mr. Romney and Mr. Trump in New York, complete with transportation in “the Trump vehicle,” accommodations at Mr. Trump’s lofty hotel and a tour of NBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice.” A mere $3 buys a chance, though “no contribution or payment of any kind is necessary to win this promotion,” the Romney campaign advises.
“We need to convince Donald Trump to go to Washington. We fully respect Mr. Trump’s decision to endorse Mitt Romney but firmly believe that we need Trump in DC. Imagine Donald Trump as Secretary of State ‘negotiating’ with China or OPEC.”
— Statement from TrumpHQ, the new designation for Mr. Trump’s former fan website ShouldTrumprun.com
DONALD + GEORGE = KERFUFFLE
It is the clash of the elder titans. That would be the skirmish between staid conservative columnist George F. Will, 71, and conservative/birther/mogul/reality-TV-star Donald Trump, 65. Yes, there were teeth displayed, some flying fur and much press amusement, to the tune of about 300 mentions in the aftermath.
The recap: During his usual Sunday appearance on ABC’s “This Week” Mr. Will called Mr. Trump a “bloviating ignoramus” for renewing public interest in whether President Obama was born in the U.S. Mr. Will was incensed. How could Mitt Romney associate with such a person?
Not to be outdone, Mr. Trump sent out an aggressive tweet about eight hours later: “George Will may be the dumbest (and most overrated) political commentator of all time. If the Republicans listen to him, they will lose.”
THE DEFRANCO FACTOR
A rogue Democrat? Could be. Marisa DeFranco’s candidacy is beginning to rattle the race between Sen. Scott P. Brown and Harvard University professor Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts.
“The American dream is at stake. … I am running to put the government back into the hands of the people, not the wealthiest 10 percent who currently own and operate the system,” proclaims Ms. DeFranco, a Boston immigration lawyer who has collected enough voter signatures to affect the upcoming state Democratic convention.
She has raised only about $42,000 and has no staff. Nevertheless, journalists in her state describe her as a viable distraction and the leader of a possible “mutiny.”
The convention itself “will be a gathering of moonbats wearing Birkenstocks and socks, union payroll patriots and limousine liberals. Although ‘Fauxcahontas’ Warren is their anointed candidate to take on Mr. Brown, state Democratic Party Chairman John Walsh is predicting that Ms. DeFranco, who has a mere 1,200 Facebook friends, is going to get 15 percent of the delegates, allowing her to be on the September ballot,” notes Holly Robichaud, a Boston Herald columnist.
“That means ‘Sitting Duck’ Warren will have to face a primary,” she adds.
“Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much that isn’t so.”
- Ronald Reagan, in “A Time for Choosing,” a speech supporting Sen. Barry Goldwater’s presidential bid, Oct. 27, 1964.
Well, at least the Internal Revenue Service can rejoice. The majority of Americans — 52 percent — say doing their taxes is easier than trying to lose weight.
“People think a great deal about the healthfulness of their diets and want to make improvements. Yet, 76 percent agree that ever-changing nutritional guidance makes it hard to know what to believe. And when it comes to making decisions about food, consumers today rely most often on their own research rather than third-party experts,” says a new analysis from the International Food Information Council Foundation.
“Clearly, there is a disconnect for many Americans, observes Marianne Smith Edge, senior vice president for nutrition and food safety at the foundation, found at www/foodinsight.org.
POLL DU JOUR
• 81 percent of American car owners say they would pay more for a fuel-efficient vehicle if they could recoup costs at the gas pump.
• 79 percent say “the government” should require automakers to increase fuel efficiency to 55 miles per gallon of gas.
• 75 percent say the government should offer tax rebates toward the purchase.
• 66 percent expect their next car to have more fuel economy.
• 37 percent say fuel economy is their leading consideration when shopping for a new car.
• 17 percent cite quality as their top consideration, 16 percent cite safety, 14 percent value, 6 percent performance, 6 percent design, 3 percent technology.
• 22 percent plan to buy a “small car”; 18 percent want a sedan, 15 percent a midsized SUV, 14 percent a pickup truck.
Source: A Consumer Reports survey of 1,702 U.S. adults who own a car, conducted April 5-7, and released Friday.
• Bloviations, commendations to firstname.lastname@example.org