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Nick Ragone

Nick Ragone
Nick Ragone is an Author, Historian, PR Exec and now Blogger, Nick is a frequent political commentator to FOX News, CNBC and CBS, as well as various radio programs. Nick blogs about politics, the presidency and public relations.


Whoa ...
2008-03-11 01:59:00
What else can you say to the Elliot Spitzer scandal, other than than .... whoa.   I was onFox Business Channel this evening, comparing the Spitzer scandal to sex scandals of yesteryear.  It's hard to comprehend how a public figure -- and a reforming crusader at that -- can behave so recklessly.  It certainly is going to breathe new life into the New York State Republican party, which had been on life support for a few years now.   It also puts the state Democrats in the odd position of distancing themselves from Spitzer the person while trying to salvage his reform agenda.   For those keeping score at home, the Tri-State area (NY, NJ, CT) has now seen two sex scandals and an imprisonment among its governors over the past five years.  Not exactly inspiring politics.
More About: Whoa
Next up: Mississippi
2008-03-09 01:56:00
Wyoming had its moment in the sun, and now it is Mississippi ’s turn to shape the nominating process: 33 of its 40 delegates are up for grabs Tuesday night, in what will be the last contest until Pennsylvania on April 22. It’s expected that Obama will win handily, but both candidates have been campaigning aggressively in the state. Obama wants to run up the score and tally as many delegates as possible, while Hillary’s goal is to keep it respectable and maintain some semblance of momentum. The demographics certainly favor Obama: Mississippi has the largest population of African-Americans (37%) in the country, and the vast majority are registered Democrats. Since South Carolina, Obama has consistently won 80% of the black vote, and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise come Tuesday.
Clinton-Obama ticket? Uh, don't count on it ...
2008-03-08 18:54:00
In the last 24 hours, both Clinton s have hinted at the possibility of a Clinton-Obama ticket. “You’ve gotta make a choice," Hillary implored the crowd while campaigning in Mississippi.  "A lot of people wish they didn’t have to I’ve got people saying, ‘I wish I could vote for both of you.’ Well, that might be possible someday, but first I need your vote on Tuesday!" And today, Bill Clinton intimated likewise, noting that a Clinton-Obama ticket would be "unstoppable." While a Clinton-Obama/Obama-Clinton ticket would be very formidable, it's about as likely as Rosie O'Donnell and Donald Trump double dating.  It's no secret that there is bad blood between the two campaigns.  Just this week alone, Clinton Flack Howard Wolfson compared Obama to Kenneth Starr (he of Whitewater special prosecutor fame), and an Obama advisor referred to Hillary as a monster (she was subsequently fired).  Truth be told, ...
More About: Count , Ticket
More book talk
2008-03-08 01:34:00
I did an interview yesterday with John Fout of TV to discuss my book, the election, and presidential mistresses, among other things.  Fout hit me with one unusual quesiton -- something I hadn't been asked before.  Check out the interview here.
More About: Videos , Book , Talk
Wyoming ... this is your life!
2008-03-07 13:33:00
The state of Wyoming hasn't gotten this much attention since ... well, ever.   I'm not even sure where it is on the map (I'm assuming it's west of New Jersey and east of California).  With 12 delegates up for grabs this weekend, it's caucus actually matters.  No polling has been done, so it's mostly guesswork at this point, but the conventional wisdom points towards Obama picking up most of those delegates.  He's won every caucus state except Nevada, and has done very well in Red states.  Should Hillary somehow win Wyoming, it would reveal a major crack in the Obama coalition and be more than a minor setback.  Enjoy your moment in the sun Wyoming! UPDATE: As expected, Obama took the Wyoming caucus easily, 59-41 percent.  It looks like he'll pick up 8 delegates to Clinton's 4. 
More About: Life
Bulldog Reporter Op-Ed
2008-03-07 01:23:00
Bulldog Reporter , a PR trade publication, ran my op-ed about the power of speeches.  I wrote it at the height of the "solutions v. speeches" debate, and made the point that speeches are more than just a collection of policies and proposals.  I posited that some of our most famous speeches would seem a bit odd if larded up with policy prescriptions.
More About: Essays , Bulldog
Whoopi-ing it up!
2008-03-06 14:26:00
I was on Whoopi Goldberg's radio show this morning, promoting the book and talking about the election.  Not only is Whoopi extraordinarily gracious and funny, she's also a political junky and history nut.  We had a great conversation about various aspects of the office -- from embarrasing moments, to pets, to advisors and great speeches.  She asked me what job I'd like to have in the White House, and I said speechwriter.  What better way to shape the president's vision and message than through speeches.  It worked for Ted Sorenson (Kennedy) and Peggy Noonan (Reagan and Bush) -- seems like a fun job. 
More About: Interviews
And the race goes on ....
2008-03-05 14:23:00
My crystal ball was a bit cloudier than usual last night.  The eveningmostly went as thought: McCain won big and Huckabee ended his campaign,Obama won Vermont, and Hillary took Rhode Island and Ohio fairlyeasily. The big shocker, however, is Clinton's victory in Texas, and her competitive showing in the Texas caucus.  As of right now, it looks like the caucus is a split decision -- something Obama's camp was expecting him to win big (and cushion his delegate lead).  Ill wait for Chuck Todd at NBC and others to tally up the delegate math, but my guess is that Hillary will somewhat cut into Obama's lead.So Hillary has the momentum, and is within shouting distance on the delegate count.  What does it all mean? For starters, this race isn't ending anytime soon.  Pennsylvania is on April 22nd, so we'll see hand-to-hand combat until then.  The math is still difficult for Hillary Clinton to overcome without the super-delegates coming to her rescue,but her...
More About: Race
According to my crystal ball ..
2008-03-04 12:01:00
I'm in Texas, and I have my magic crystal ball with me, so I'm going tomake a few election predictions.The easy one first: McCain will win Texas and Ohio handily, and theHuckabeezer will formally drop out during his concession speech onceMccain has finally secured the required delegates (which will happenabout two minutes after the TX polls close).  And no, Huckabee will notbe McCain's running mate.  As for the Democrats, there really are three potential scenarios (I'massuming RI will go to Hillary and Vermont to Obama):  Obama sweepsboth Texas and Ohio, and the primary is effectively over (whetherHillary's campaign acknowledges it or not); Hillary sweeps both statesand steals the momentum, even if she still trails in the delegate count;it's a split decision, with Obama winning Texas and Hillary Ohio. I'm predicting a split decision, with Obama actually securing moredelegates because of the unusual Texas "prima-caucus" system.  I boldly predicted...
More About: Crystal , Ball
With friends like these ...
2008-03-03 01:23:00
The New York Observer reports that while campaigning on behalf of Hillary Clinton, feminist icon Gloria Steinem had this to say about John McCain:     &nbs p;      &nb sp;      &n bsp;      & nbsp;               ;      &nbs p;      &nb sp;  “Suppose John McCain had been Joan McCain and Joan McCain had got captured, shot down and been a POW for eight years. [The media would ask], ‘What did you do wrong to get captured? What terrible things did you do while you were there as a captive for eight years?’” And that's not even the money quote. The Observer article notes that "referring to his time in captivity, Steinem said with bewilderment, 'I mean, hello? This is supposed to be a qualification to be President? I don't thin...
More About: Friends
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