John P. Avlon
Author, Independent Nation: How Centrists Can Change American Politics
Best quote of the GOP convention so far comes from politico.com's conversation with Florida Representative Adam Putnam who tried to take on media bias in the coverage of Sarah Palin by saying, "The media doesn't understand…getting up at 3 a.m. to hunt a moose; they don't understand eating a mooseburger."
Putnam's forced populism on the subject of mooseburgers – near and dear to every Floridian's heart – is indicative of the overheated defend-at-all-costs spin cycle that is taking hold at the convention. Politics is perception and perceptions take root two months from Election Day.
After the initial Republican euphoria over the selection of Governor Palin, reporters are doing their due diligence. The question of whether Palin is a Hail Mary pass or a game-changing nomination remains in question.
Sex and culture controversies engage the public in a way that policy debates do not. And so talking heads hit the trifecta with Palin's Labor Day admission that her 17‑year-old daughter Bristol is pregnant, underage and out of wedlock.
This is causing some interesting contortions in spin rooms.
Amy Holmes | Bio
CNN Political Analyst
Editor’s Note: Amy Holmes is an Independent conservative who has not endorsed any candidate for president.
Here's what we know. Bristol Palin is pregnant. And that's all we know. We don't know if she was unaware of how babies are made, or how to acquire contraception. As the eldest of five children, it's hard to imagine that she was not acquainted with the basic facts of life. And none of it is our business.
If we want to turn someone's personal life into a teachable moment, may I suggest John Edwards? "Warning: Extra-marital sex may result in messy paternity rumors and derail national political ambitions."
Do they teach that in sex ed?
David M. Reisner
AC360° Digital Producer
So yesterday I told you about the formation of Tropical Storm Ike. Looks like it's not going to calm down for a while.
A new tropical storm has formed in the eastern Atlantic to make a total of four named storms currently at large. Tropical Storm Josephine
The National Hurricane Center says Josephine is the 10th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season.
Josephine has top sustained winds near 40 mph and is moving west at 15 mph. It could be near hurricane strength on Wednesday or Thursday. Right when we'll be dealing with Hanna, and possibly Ike.
Take a look at the projections. Still very early, but wanted to share:
Now this isn't the first time Tropical Storm Josephine has appeared. Back in October of 1996 there was another storm named Josephine, responsible $130 million dollars in damage (around $180 million in todays dollars). Let's hope we don't see Josephine make a second visit.
Beat 360° is back to bring laughter into your lives after taking Labor Day off! You've missed Beat 360°, and Beat 360° misses you too!
We post a picture – and you provide the caption and our staff will join in too.
Check back later to see if you are our favorite!
Here is the 'Beat 360°’ pic of the day:
'Jacques,' a West Highland Terrier, stands in front of a police officer in riot gear on day one of the Republican National Convention (RNC) at the Xcel Energy Center, Monday, in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions!
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Update: Today's winner is JC from Los Angeles, California, who wrote:
With the dog days of the campaigns upon us, the red, white and blue states seem evenly divided.
CosmoGirl Election Correspondent
On Friday, I left the world of media and politics with a sense of anticipation. People were energized about Senator McCain's VP pick and the Republican National Convention promised to be just as exciting as its Democratic counterpart in Denver.
But things in this business sure change fast. The atmosphere in Minnesota yesterday was, for the most part, anxious and pessimistic.
Hurricane Gustav has folks up here wondering if there's even going to be a convention. The younger crowd is still out partying, but with a sort of "be-merry-now-because-who-knows-what-tomorrow-will-bring" attitude. As one delegate told me, "We want to have fun now because if people are dying, the celebration is obviously over."
Editor's Note: Sally Quinn founded and co-moderates 'On Faith', a blog from the Washington Post and Newsweek. Co-moderated by Newsweek editor and bestselling author Jon Meacham and hosted by a panel of renowned religious scholars of all denominations, On Faith is the first worldwide, interactive discussion about religion and its impact on global life. Here is a recent blog:
Washington Post reporter
My first reaction was shock. Then anger. John McCain chose a running mate simply because she is a woman and one who appealed to the Republican's conservative evangelical base. Now, with news that Palin's 17-year-old unmarried daughter is pregnant, McCain's pick may not even find support among "family values" voters.
It has happened before, of course. Geraldine Ferraro was chosen as the Democratic vice presidential nominee in 1984 because she was a woman, but that was 24 years ago. I thought we were past this. Apparently not. McCain's choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate is a cynical and calculated move. It is a choice made to try to win an election. It is a political gimmick. And it's very high risk. I find it insulting to women, to the Republican party, and to the country.
This is nothing against Palin. From what little we know about her, she seems to be a bright, attractive, impressive person. She certainly has been successful in her 44 years. But is she ready to be president?
And now we learn the 17-year-old daughter, Bristol, is pregnant.
Another sure sign this storm is over and a lesson from Katrina was learned.
After Katrina, garbage sat for weeks in the French Quarter.
This morning it's already being picked up.
There are still plenty of problems with this city but you have to admit, the city was much more prepared for Gustav.
This is a shot at 8:45 Tuesday morning on Royal Street.
AC360° Editorial Producer
A lot of you have been asking how Mr. Herbert Gettridge is.
I stopped by his house on Monday afternoon, and nobody was home, understandably. But the house was there with no water around it.
Also, cell phone service was down most of the day, and my calls to him still aren't getting through.
Our entire staff is wondering how he is, so I have made it my mission to find out. Will let you know when I do.
Take a look at this exclusive AC360° interview.
Sen. Barack Obama talks to Anderson Cooper about the response to Gustav and the issue of experience.
Anderson Cooper goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news. Tune in weeknights at 8 and 10 ET on CNN.
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