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Voice Votes: Todd Akin, Dieting Dogs, and Tampa Strippers Voice Votes: Todd Akin, Dieting Dogs, and Tampa Strippers

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Voice Votes: Todd Akin, Dieting Dogs, and Tampa Strippers

We rate the events of the week, and poke fun at them.


Bo Obama with the president.(David Axelrod)

Welcome to this week’s Voice Votes, a feature in which we grade the week’s headlines—and poke fun at them. You can join the fun by suggesting your own #win, #fail, and #meh candidates via Twitter. (Send tweets @nationaljournal). Need more space? E-mail suggestions to or leave us a comment on Facebook. We’ll publish the best suggestions in this space every week and credit the authors.

Here’s how we vote this week:


#Fail on Rep. Todd Akin’s claim Sunday that the bodies of women who have been the victims of “legitimate rape” are able to reject unwanted pregnancies. Akin resisted calls from his own party to bow out and remains in the race, proving that the body politic can’t even reject unwanted candidates.

#Meh on Monday’s revelation that President Obama’s dog, Bo, is on a diet. The news, which the president let slip at an event for winners of the first lady’s healthy recipe competition, took the press completely off guard. This whole time we’d been worrying about fat cats.

#Win on the news that the physical floor of the Senate will be restored and upgraded over the course of the summer recess. Given the elevated level of partisan rancor, Capitol staff are equipping the floor to withstand multiple canings


#Fail on Fox News’s outing of a Navy SEAL who authored a pseudonymous account of the killing of Osama Bin Laden. In keeping with its slogan of "fair and balanced," we expect Fox is now working to out Mitt Romney's tax returns.

#Fail on the scandal at the Veterans Affairs Department over the $5 million it spent on two conferences and a video in which an actor spoofs the iconic opening scene of Patton. But who can be surprised? In the immortal words of Patton himself, “Americans love to waste money, traditionally.” Wait. Maybe that’s not how it went.

#Win on the law, passed by Congress and signed by President Obama, to install electric car charging stations at the Capitol. Beyond Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., both cosponsors of the bill, not many people on the Hill drive electric cars. After the recess, we expect Levin and Alexander will team back up on SB1234: A Bill to Address the Lack of Solar Panels at the Levin and Alexander Residences.

#Meh on the efforts of Tampa Strip clubs to cash in on the Republican National Convention by adding glitzy new features, including the ability to “make it rain” up to $2,000 in cash on a stripper using a high-tech machine. With an act of God named after an Old Testament patriarch possibly barreling toward Tampa and threatening to derail the convention by literally making it rain, the strip clubs might want to note the disapproval and act accordingly -- while they still can. 


#Fail on the White House’s refusal to reveal the recipe for its home-brewed honey ale, despite the pleas of thousands of Americans. We’re on the side of transparency on this one, and call us zealots, but we won’t settle for just the recipe, we want the long-form recipe.

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