He’s going down a checklist of thorny, longstanding problems, and he’s doing whatever he can to tackle them. These are things that have been tearing at us for decades and generations. My sense is his feeling is, I’m not going to leave office without doing everything I can to stop them.
— David Axelrod, quoted by the New York Times, on President Obama’s recent actions.
If you want a government that’s gonna intrude on your life, enforce their personal views on you, then I guess Jeb Bush is your man.
— Michael Schiavo, quoted by Think Progress, on being overruled by Bush for his decision to remove his wife Terri’s feeding tube after cardiac arrest had left her in a vegetative state.
On behalf of the French delegation, I want to tell you, you are very beautiful.
— French ambassador Gérard Araud, quoted by the New Yorker, in a text message to U.N ambassador Samantha Power, adding that, “As a Frenchman, I’m not condemned to be politically correct.”
I’m going to end on a note of gratitude — something I never thought that I would say. George W. Bush, thank you for not dying while you were in office.
— Jon Stewart, on former Vice President Dick Cheney’s defense of torture during the Bush administration.
At election time, candidates seduce us with promises to bring America together, but inevitably fall short and end up leaving office with the country more polarized than when they arrived. After blaming them for their failure to unite us, we turn to the next crop of presidential aspirants and the cycle of hope and disappointment begins all over again.
— Brendan Nyhan, writing for the New York Times’ The Upshot blog.
I’m basically a libertarian, and I’m a conservative on economic matters, and I’m a social liberal. What I want these candidates to do is to support a balanced budget. I’m very worried that if the budget is not balanced that inflation could occur and the economy of our country could suffer terribly.
— Billionaire David Koch, a powerful donor in American conservative politics, telling ABC News that he’s a “social liberal” on issues like abortion and gay marriage even though most of the candidates he supports are not.
I’d do it again in a minute.
— Former Vice President Dick Cheney, quoted by Politico, on the CIA’s interrogation program.
I spend most of my time watching ESPN in the morning. I get so much politics I don’t want to be inundated with a bunch of chatter about politics during the day.
No majority leader in my era would have thought to attempt to go around the committee and negotiate over the head of the committee chair. You could not get away with it.
— Former Sen. Bob Packwood (R-OR), quoted by the Washington Post, on Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) being bypassed by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).
“If you are a Jerseyite or a Pennsylvanian and you’re rooting for the Cowboys, it means you’re not secure in yourself and you wanted to root for a team that was a team in your youth that was a constant winner. … How can a Jersey guy be a Cowboys fan? It’s pathetic.
— Former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D, commenting on Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) unapologetic love for the Dallas Cowboys, CNN reports.