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Trail Mix: Obama's most embarrassing moment

  • Going back in time with Mitt Romney
  • Obama raises big California cash

 Want to know what's popping in campaign news? Meet our column "Trail Mix" -- your guide to the fun, the quirky, and, oh yeah, the news from the 2012 campaign.

  No time for cute kids?

You know the presidential race is close when Nickelodeon finds itself being used as a political football. For its upcoming special, “Kids Pick the President,” the network invited both President Obama and Mitt Romney to tackle questions from kids around the United States. The network said topics ranged from gun control to same-sex marriage to outsourcing, with kids also hurling hardball questions such as the candidate’s most embarrassing moment.

But here’s the problem, according to a Nickelodeon press release: “After numerous attempts by Nick News to get former Gov. Mitt Romney to participate in the special, his camp declined, saying he was unable to fit it into his schedule.” Obama did participate and said his most embarrassing moment? Running into doors, desks and walls while he’s walking. (Note, though, he answered the question before the debate in Denver).

The Obama campaign wasted no time pointing out Romney’s apparent lack of interest in the all-important pint-sized (non)voting bloc. “It's no surprise Romney decided to play hookey. Kids demand details, and I'm sure they want some answers on why Romney could increase their class sizes, eliminate their teacher's jobs, raise taxes on their families and slash funding for Big Bird,” Obama campaign deputy press secretary Adam Fetcher said in a statement.

Going back in time with Romney

Who could have known that the boy sitting on his father’s knee would one day be the Republican nominee for president? Certainly not the Life magazine photographer who was focused much more on the father (George Romney) than his son. But to be fair, back in 1958 when the photo was taken, Mitt was just 10.

The image is one of 24 that Life has put online from extensive profiles of George Romney done in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The pictures – showing Mitt and his father playing with an electric train and singing a hymn at the family’s piano – are a black-and-white snapshot into Romney’s early days in Michigan. Many of the pictures focus on the elder Romney, (described by Life at the time as “lean and hard”) with Mitt relegated to a corner of a group family shot.

Star-studded cash

This close to Election Day, there’s only two reasons for a candidate to visit anywhere: electoral college votes or money. Since the odds of California going Republican are about zero, there can be only one reason why Obama is spending two precious campaign days there – actually there are close to 9.5 million reasons. Between Sunday and Monday, Obama was expected to raise almost $10 million to help him compete in swing states across the country.

On Sunday, there was a $250-per-person concert featuring performances by Jennifer Hudson, Stevie Wonder and Jon Bon Jovi among others. After meeting privately with a small group of donors, Obama was off to a dinner with 150 guests who paid $20,000 each for the privilege.

Monday was another concert, this time featuring John Legend, with 6,000 people snatching up tickets that started at $200. That’s in addition to two other fundraisers with tickets going for $20,000 and $40,000.

Must Reads:

Washington Post: Romney blasts Obama in major foreign policy speech

The Hill: The $17.5 million woman for the Obama campaign

Politico: Why are Congressmen quitting?



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