A new daily blog, covering the latest news and controversies across a wide range of races and issues. As the author three books about influential political campaigns  (Upton Sinclair, Nixon-Douglas, Obama), I also bring a certain historical perspective to this very topical task. You can bookmark the blog by clicking my namethe at the top or by going here . 
11:20 THE SORROW & THE PITY From Randy Newman’s greatest album, “Mr. President, Have Pity on the Working Man.”
10:55 TAXING DEBATE And so PolitFact weighs in  and finds that Romney calling the ACA a “tax”—because SCOTUS said so—is “mostly true.” Polled fifteen constitutional experts. Concludes: “PolitiFact focuses on political speech, rather than legal speech, and judged by that standard Romney is pretty close to accurate. We rate his statement Mostly True.” No mention of Romney’s denying in past such a mandate was a tax.
10:40 JOBS REPORT REACTIONS, Part II Added to initial responses (see below), here’s a roundup … Bright spot in report: Wages up somewhat , also hours worked… Romney sure sounded like Obama  in 2006 when he tried to explain jobs numbers. See newly uncovered video … Just asking: Jobs report fallout overhyped? Do most voters really care that much about stagnant overall picture if they still have job or are retired?
10:15 FRACKING FILM The great doc filmmaker Alex Gibney with an online only “op-doc” at NYT on fracking and a “songs against drilling” concert featuring Natalie Merchant.
PATIENCE ON JOBS? Only about 80,000 jobs added in new report. Unemp rate stuck at 8.2 percent. Ezra Klein  analyses… Biggest drag continues to be public sector. Ari Berman: “4,000 more public sector jobs lost last month. 640,000 gone since 2009. That’s why we need new jobs plan!”Why today’s jobs report (and the next one) will have such a strong impact on presidential race. And Greg Sargent on same here … 14,000 more jobs in education lost , bringing total tin past year to 100,000… Richard Yeselson: “If the Fed does not aggressively intervene at this point, questions about its non partisan legitimacy can be fairly raised.”
JUST LIKE A WOMAN Powerful political “I Vote for Women” ad spot. Message: Protest your rights, while Limbaugh shouts, “That makes her a slut.”
TRUE, GRITS Jake Tapper tweets: “BREAKING: POTUS at diner orders 2 eggs over medium, bacon, wheat toast. He was offered grits +said ‘You have grits too?’ and ordered those.” Breakfast of champion?
RUPE NO DUPE? NYT latest to comment at length on Murdoch hitting Romney campaign via Twitter and WSJ. “Mr. Murdoch has never been particularly impressed with Mr. Romney, friends and associates of both men say. The two times Mr. Romney visited the editorial board of The Journal, Mr. Murdoch did not work very hard to conceal his lack of excitement…. Though political strategists debate the ultimate impact of any single media outlet, what is written in the pages of The Journal and The New York Post and talked about on Fox News—all Murdoch properties—could have the collective power to shape the thinking of millions of voters.”
WALSH SINGS SAME TUNE If you missed Representative Joe Walsh in shouting match with CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield yesterday over his hitting Tammy Duckworth military service.
MORNING SHORTS STACK Obama in bar jokingly tells patron to turn off Fox News… Yes, Election Day is four months from today. Woo-hoo?… Could Pennsylvania ID law possibly disenfranchise 10 percent of state’s voters? …Is Obama finally taking  James Carville’s advice on the economy?….More evidence  that Obamacare is actually a tax cut for the middle class… So what is behind all that chat (see: Bill Maher) about Mormon “secret underwear ”?
From late Thursday
THEIR BAIN IS TRUE Dave Weigel on  the NYT profile of the “Bain-bashing” PAC, Priorities USA (we have posted a couple of their ads) and how their work has a lot of “octane” and with much more to come. Twist: folks who made a pot of dough in the private sector now donating to rip it.
ANOTHER BRICK FROM THE ‘WALL’ Alex Pareene with more on  the somewhat surprising attacks on Romney campaign by the WSJ editorial page. “The conservative press is much better at bullying its candidates into adopting particular strategies and policies than the liberal press, which has approximately zero power over candidates and elected officials.”
KROHN ATTACK Amazing slide show at TPM  starring that former GOP teen hero, Jonathan Krohn (now an Obama supporter) posing with various rightwing icons. Photo at left: with the three Mouseketeers, Andrew Breitbart, James O’Keeffe, Karl Rove. We also see him, Zelig-like, with Romney, Rudy G, Bachmann, Rubio, Gingrich, Bill O’Reilly, Malkin, Lee Greenwood, Joe the Plumber, and on and on.
AFTERNOON DELIGHTS Ari Melber: Average net worth of a US Senator: $13.2 million—average of all Americans: $77,000… Joe the Plumber pipes up: Obama should be “embarrassed”  to visit Ohio. Remember, he is GOP nominee for Congress…
LIFE OF BRYAN Here’s the second in my series of audio of famous speeches by speakers whose voices you have perhaps never heard. The first was Teddy Roosevelt during his “Bull Moose” 1912 campaign. Now here’s background and excerpt from William Jenning Bryan’s “Cross of Gold” speech. Yes, he does sound like Fredric March in Inherit the Wind.