Calling it for the president
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So, what separates the embattled Nitin Gadkari from the victorious Barack Obama?
After such a long time, someone other than Manmohan Singh, his government or the Congress party is the object of affection or disaffection on television news. That someone is Nitin Gadkari. On Tuesday evening, the big story breaking like a mini-Hurricane Sandy, was that Ram Jethmalani wrote L.K. Advani "a letter bomb" (Times Now) saying Gadkari is a "disaster for the nation". Then came news of Advani deciding not to attend the BJP core group meeting and even as that became the topic of discussion across news channels, guess what? Gadkari wasn't attending the core group meeting either. Ooh la la, ooh la la, it's murky picture.
You could hear Abhishek Manu Singhvi, freshly re-recruited as Congress spokesperson, fairly gloat at BJP's divided-we-stand-united contradiction (NDTV 24x7). Ram Jethmalani relished the chance to be interviewed — it has been a long time since he was. And when a grim-faced Ravi Shankar Prasad gave the BJP president a clean chit, it sounded just like the Congress defending the prime minister or Robert Vadra. All we needed was another press conference by Arvind Kejriwal to complete the circle of events we've grown accustomed to on the news.
And who was out there defending the BJP? Shaina NC and G.V.L. Narasimha Rao. Huh? The likes of Swapan Dasgupta, who normally argue for the main opposition party, were querulous. Dasgupta into "Mr Gurumurthy" (as he repeatedly called him) questioning his clean chit to Gadkari when he was "so damaged" that he simply could not enjoy a second term as BJP president (CNN-IBN). Seemed like the party's internal feud was running live for all to see.
Barack Obama most certainly will enjoy a second term as president of the United States of America, despite all efforts by news channels and opinion polls to place him in a "tight race" that was "too close to call" with Republican Mitt Romney, Tuesday and early Wednesday. "Obama is signing shoes and wishing his opponent well", observed Richard Quest on CNN, predicting that Obama looked and spoke like a man who had signed on for another four years in the White House. Then Mari Ramos, the weather woman, made a crucial poll prediction: according to folklore she said, bad weather favours Republicans — and it was raining in parts of US. Wonder what the smog-fog hanging over Delhi means for Nitin Gadkari?
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