Forward Thinking

Report: GOP NOT Conceding Ohio

By J.J. Goldberg

An announcement by the Republican state chairman, despite the fact that all the networks have called it, including Fox. Worth noting: the returns so far have them separated by 1,500 votes with 77% reporting.

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1st Calls: Mitt 19 electors (IN, KY), Obama 3 (VT)

By J.J. Goldberg

7:11 pm Early returns on MSNBC: Romney projected to win Indiana (11 electoral votes) and Kentucky (8 electors). Obama projected in Vermont (3 electors).

Mourdock (R) is leading Donnelly (D) 48%-46% in the Indiana Senate race, but it’s considered too close to call. In Vermont, Bernie Sanders is projected to win.

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Albright Gives Romney a C in Foreign Policy

By Nathan Guttman

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Republican candidate Mitt Romney came out swinging Monday at President Obama’s foreign policy, promising to end any “daylight” between the United States and Israel and a tough stance toward Iran.

Speaking at the Virginia Military Institute, Romney sought to present Obama’s Middle East policy and his response to the Arab Spring as lacking leadership.

As in previous foreign policy addresses, Romney spent time criticizing Obama for his tense relationship with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “The relationship between the President of the United States and the Prime Minister of Israel, our closest ally in the region, has suffered great strains,” Romney said. “The President explicitly stated that his goal was to put ‘daylight’ between the United States and Israel. And he has succeeded.” Romney argued that this daylight has “emboldened our mutual adversaries, especially Iran.” He promised that if elected president “the world will never see any daylight between our two nations.”

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The RJC Wants to Give You An iPad 3

By Josh Nathan-Kazis

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Casino billionaire and Romney super PAC donor Sheldon Adelson

Want a new iPad 3? Spend fifty hours phone banking for the Republican Jewish Coalition and the $599 model is yours.

Only have forty hours? That’s okay — the RJC can still hook you up with the $499 version.

RJC volunteers in California, Washington, New York and Florida who rack up phone banking hours between now and the election are eligible for the prizes, according to RJC executive director Matt Brooks.

“It’s a token way of saying thank you for people who are giving up a lot of time,” Brooks told the Forward.

Volunteers who make calls for 30 hours will receive an older iPad model, and volunteers who work for 20 hours will get a $100 gift card.

Political groups don’t usually offer volunteers expensive incentives like iPads, according to Michael Tobman, a New York-based political consultant who’s run volunteer phone banks and paid phone banks. “iPads seem a bit excessive, but if the money’s there and a group wants to do that, I guess the new normal is being defined upward,” Tobman said. “Generally it’s pizza, thanks, and credit for having done it.”

Phone banks organized by the National Jewish Democratic Council have not offered similar incentives, according to that group’s president and CEO David Harris.

The expensive gifts are another sign of the economic heft of the Republican group, which released a lengthy video this week featuring Israelis criticizing President Obama’s record on Israel.

Casino billionaire and Romney super PAC donor Sheldon Adelson is a major supporter of the RJC.

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