Generally Speaking

There is A LOT of presidential election-related news today! Most of it is about how Mitt Romney is terrible! In ways we hadn't even yet begun to imagine! So here is a Generally Speaking post, which still won't be daily again for awhile, to collate a bunch of those election-related items, plus a picture of President Barack Obama campaigning that I really like. Hooray for us all!

image of President Barack Obama in a crowd, visible between the raised arms of someone taking a picture of him on a mobile phone
Portland, Oregon: July 24.

Steve Holland for Reuters—"Anglo-Saxon" quote overshadows start of Romney tour: "Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney began a foreign tour on Wednesday forced to disavow a report that an adviser had accused President Barack Obama of not understanding the shared 'Anglo-Saxon heritage' of Britain and the United States. ... Romney, in an NBC News interview, dismissed the comment but said the United States and Britain do enjoy specialties and that he believes Obama recognizes this as well." How magnanimous, etc.

Pema Levy at TPM—Anger Games: Cameron, British Press pounce on Romney's Olympics critiques: "Mitt Romney's big international tour got off to a rocky start Thursday morning, as British officials including Prime Minister David Cameron took offense at the Republican candidate's criticisms over London's preparedness for the Olympics. Romney expressed wariness over England's ability to pull off the Olympics without a hitch, as well as reservations over security [and wondered if Britons would unite to make the Olympic Games successful]. ... The comments did not go over well in Britain."

Owen Gibson in the GuardianDavid Cameron hits back at Mitt Romney over London 2012 doubts: "Cameron, who was due to meet Romney later on Thursday, said: 'In terms of people coming together, the torch relay demonstrated that this is not a London Games, this is not an England Games but this is a United Kingdom Games. We'll show the world we've not only come together as a United Kingdom but are extremely good at welcoming people from across the world.' Cameron said he was going to make this point to Romney when he met him later on Thursday."

Greg Sargent in the Washington PostRomney: Foreign trip not the time to detail foreign policy: "If a foreign trip is not a good time to discuss foreign policy, why take the trip at all? This raises questions as to whether the trip is only about staging political theatrics for a domestic audience."

Aviva Shen at Think Progress—Heavily edited Romney video targets black voters, shows NAACP audience applauding: "Mitt Romney's speech at the NAACP was defined in the media by the resounding chorus of boos he elicited from the crowd. Campaign staffers had a different interpretation, insisting that he received 'thunderous applause over and over again.' Reflecting this idea, the campaign's new video targeting African American voters, 'We Need Mitt Romney,' rewrites history by splicing together Romney's speech with shots of a couple audience members nodding as if in agreement. While Romney received a polite standing ovation when he was done speaking, the video has been edited to make it seem like the audience rose to their feet to applaud him mid-speech."

Michael D. Shear for the New York TimesConservative paper faults Romney on tax disclosure: "The Union Leader newspaper in Manchester, N.H., known for its conservative editorial stances, slammed Mitt Romney on Thursday for not releasing multiple years of his tax returns. 'Maintaining the secrecy creates the impression, justly or not, that there is something there to hide. No escaping that reality. The impression is there,' the paper wrote in an editorial posted online early Thursday. The newspaper expressed surprise that Mr. Romney had not ensured that his tax returns were 'above reproach' in the many years he was pursuing a national political career."

Daniel J. Weiss and Seth Hanlon at the Center for American Progress—Romney tax plan: Many happy returns for Big Oil: "Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's economic plan slashes corporate tax rates while failing to identify a single corporate tax loophole to eliminate. Highly profitable large oil companies that already enjoy lucrative tax breaks stand to receive some of the biggest benefits from Gov. Romney's plan. The world's five biggest public oil companies—BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, and Royal Dutch Shell—would keep special tax breaks worth $2.4 billion each year. And by cutting corporate tax rates, the Romney plan could lower the companies' annual tax bill by another $2.3 billion, based on an analysis of the companies' tax expense for 2011. The special tax breaks, supplemented by Gov. Romney's lower corporate rates, could benefit the oil companies by more than $4 billion annually."

And in Obama news...

Gallup—U.S. Business Owners Now Among Least Approving of Obama: "U.S. business owners' approval of President Barack Obama fell in the second quarter of 2012 to 35%, essentially tying farmers and fishers for the lowest approval among major occupational groups. Overall, professional workers remain the most approving, at 52%."

Darren Samuelsohn for the PoliticoObama: AK-47s belong on battlefield, not streets: At the National Urban League conference in New Orleans, President Obama said, "I, like most Americans, believe that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual the right to bear arms. I think we recognize the traditions of gun ownership passed on from generation to generation, that hunting and shooting are part of a cherished national heritage. But I also believe that a lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers and not in the hands of crooks. They belong on the battlefield of war, not on the streets of our cities."

In related news: Colorado gun sales up after cinema killings.

Talk about these things! Or don't. Whatever makes you happy. Life is short.

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