Gary Johnson fumbles: ‘And what is Aleppo?’

aleppo

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson may have just disqualified himself as a common-sense alternative to Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.

This morning, Johnson sat on the set of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” basking in some rare attention.

The topic was foreign policy – leftovers from last night’s back-to-back appearances by Trump and Clinton in front of an audience of veterans and active military personnel. Johnson was offered a chance to join the conversation:

Mike Barnicle: What would you do, if you were elected, about Aleppo?

Johnson: About?

Barnicle: Aleppo.

Johnson: And what is Aleppo?

Barnicle: You’re kidding.

Johnson: No.

Watch the exchange here:

Aleppo is the Syrian city caught between the troops and militias loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, rebel groups, and ISIL forces. It’s considered the epicenter of the largest migration of people since World War II, and the greatest humanitarian crisis in the world. Aleppo is this young boy:

 Aleppo Media Center/DPA/ZUMA Press

Aleppo Media Center/DPA/ZUMA Press

Afterwards, on an NBC smart phone, Johnson was captured kicking himself in frustration.

This could be an important development, particularly in Georgia, where Johnson is siphoning primarily Republican support Donald Trump. Should Johnson do well here, Clinton’s chances of taking Georgia are enhanced.

This morning, Johnson just increased the likelihood that Georgia will be in Trump’s column of electoral college votes.

***

Speaking of humanitarian crises, this is what Michelle Nunn and the rest of the crew at Atlanta-based CARE are worried about today. From the Washington Post:

KABUL — The compound of CARE International stood like a fortress, with narrow windows, safe rooms and massive sand-filled barriers surrounding its entrances. But on Wednesday, the day after being struck by a Taliban truck bomb and raked with gunfire for hours, it looked like a defeated ruin.

***

You can argue over whether Republican Donald Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton won that back-t0-back forum on national security that aired last night on NBC from the deck of a decommissioned aircraft carrier in New York.

But there seems to be widespread agreement that moderator Matt Lauer was the loser. From the New York Times:

Charged with overseeing a live prime-time forum with Donald J. Trump and Hillary Clinton — widely seen as a dry run of sorts for the coming presidential debates — Mr. Lauer found himself besieged on Wednesday evening by critics of all political stripes, who accused the anchor of unfairness, sloppiness and even sexism in his handling of the event…

Drawing particular ire was the moment when Mr. Trump asserted, with his usual confidence: “I was totally against the war in Iraq.”

In fact, Mr. Trump initially said he supported the war, a point that Mrs. Clinton had raised earlier in the evening, citing an interview that Mr. Trump had given to Howard Stern. But Mr. Lauer left the assertion unchallenged, zipping along to his next question about Mr. Trump’s professed tendency to “say things that you later regret.”

***

Georgia Republicans will gather in Atlanta next month for an Oct. 13 fund-raising dinner at the Georgia Aquarium that will feature the state’s top officials from the state house, Congress — and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

***

Georgia’s most politically active health care system has weighed in on Medicaid expansion. From the Albany Herald:

Officials from Phoebe Putney Health System showed support on Wednesday for a proposal released last week by a health care task force meant to aid in the discussion of health care in Georgia, while action was made regarding an employee drug screening policy, appointment of an open records officer and the renewal of Phoebe’s contractors.

***

You may now call him Mr. Chief Justice. From the Marietta Daily Journal:

Justice Harris Hines, a resident of Marietta, has been unanimously elected as the new chief justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia, the state’s high court announced Wednesday.

Hines will assume the position on Jan. 6, when he takes over from retiring Chief Justice Hugh Thompson.


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