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Journey has been hired to perform at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday night, at a reported price of $500,000.

This doesn't necessarily mean they endorse Mitt Romney, however.

Journey Band Photo

"It's an RNC event, but not one to endorse any candidate or party," a source tells E! News.

"I believe Journey and also Zac Brown [also set to play Thursday] are described as nonpartisan but they aren't aware of any of the details themselves."

"To Journey, it's simple, one of hundreds of private [events] they get hired to do."

No word if everyone's favorite groupie Michaele Salahi will be on hand in Tampa.

Kid Rock, Trace Adkins, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Oak Ridge Boys and Lee Greenwood are also scheduled to perform at private events during the convention.

Sadly, no Dave Mustaine, Ted Nugent or Toby Keith at the RNC.

Election 2012:

 

[Photo: WENN.com]

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Two-time Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul made full use of his final campaign rally on Sunday to take his final shots at an establishment that never quite delivered on promises to include him and his libertarian followers.

His rally at the University of Southern Florida's SunDome drew over 7,000 fans, an event staged in response to a Republican convention that will not include Paul.

Mitt Romney's campaign offered him a speaking slot at the national event this week on condition that he provide his remarks to them in advance for their approval.

Paul declined.

He'll still be honored in a video tribute on Tuesday night, but his convention presence - or lack thereof - was one of the first subjects Paul covered Sunday.

"Today I was very excited to get a call from the RNC," Paul said, before cracking a joke related to the weather-related postponement of Monday events.

"They said they changed their mind. They're going to give me a whole hour and I can say whatever I want - tomorrow night! Just kidding."

Paul directly referenced rules changes that may keep similarly insurgent delegates from succeeding in future elections, seeming stung by disappointment.

The RNC "learned how to bend rules, break rules, and now they want to rewrite the rules," the 77-year-old said. "That's what we have to stop."

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Former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford confirmed on Sunday that he is engaged to marry his now-infamous Argentine girlfriend, Maria Belen Chapur.

"Yes, it's true and I stand by my statement," Sanford told Reuters.

Sanford was referring to a statement given to CNN in which he said, "Yes, we are engaged, and I'm both happy and excited for what that means."

Sanford, Chapur

"I have long expressed my feelings for her, she's a wonderful person. My closest friends love her, and I look forward to introducing her to still many more."

Back in the summer of 2009, then-Governor Sanford disappeared to visit his mistress in Argentina for a week. Aides said he was hiking the Appalachian Trail.

When Sanford returned, he gave a tearful, State House press conference admitting he had been unfaithful to his wife and calling Chapur his "soul mate."

He served out the rest of his term until January 2011. Sanford and his wife, Jenny Sanford, were divorced in 2010. They have four children together.

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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made a joke about his birth certificate - and took a subtle shot at his opponent in doing so - at a rally Friday.

Speaking about his roots in Michigan, where has father was governor, he told a Commerce, Mich., crowd, "No one's ever asked to see my birth certificate."

"They know that this is the place that we were born and raised."

It was awkward, if nothing else, for Romney to joke about "birther" conspiracies that dogged President Barack Obama since his 2008 White House run.

The President released his long form birth certificate in 2011.

The Obama campaign quickly responded, saying that with the comment, Romney was embracing the extreme elements in the conservative movement.

A spokesman for Romney said he was "only referencing that Michigan, where he is campaigning today, is the state where he himself was born and raised."

Romney's son Matt joked earlier this year about Obama's birth certificate, referring to Mitt Romney's tax returns - his own "missing" document controversy:

"I heard that someone suggest that as soon as President Obama releases his grades, and birth certificate, and a long list of things, then maybe he will."

Romney believes Obama was born in the U.S., saying in 2011 that "the man needs to be taken out of office but his citizenship isn't the reason why."

President Obama: U.S. Citizen?

 

Election 2012:

 

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In a recent interview with MTV, Lil Wayne - who spent 10 months in Riker's Island on weapons charges in 2010 - made it very clear, telling the network: "I don't like New York."

And apparently that was all it took for New York State Senator Malcolm A. Smith to hold a press conference in Times Square and call out the rapper for daring to diss his city.

Yes, folks, it's election season.

"I take strong exception to the words 'I don't like New York,'" said Smith, directing his comments at Lil Wayne. "You don't have to sell your products here. And perhaps we won't come to your concerts."

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A county judge in Lubbock, Texas, recently predicted a possible "civil war" if President Barack Obama is re-elected this November, according to reports.

Judge Tom Head was making a case for a local tax increase, saying hiring extra sheriff's deputies would especially be needed if Obama wins in 2012.

You know, to ward off the United Nations troops.

El Presidente

From Fox 34 News: "He's going to try to hand over the sovereignty of the United States to the U.N., and what is going to happen when that happens?"

"I'm thinking the worst. Civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe."

"And we're not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations, we're talking Lexington, Concord, take up arms and get rid of the guy."

"Now what's going to happen if we do that, if the public decides to do that? He's going to send in U.N. troops. I don't want 'em in Lubbock County."

"OK. So I'm going to stand in front of their armored personnel carrier and say 'you're not coming in here'."

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Republicans. When will they learn.

With some notable exceptions (Ted Nugent, Dave Mustaine, Hank Williams Jr.), music stars seem far from keen on having their material used at GOP campaign rallies.

Today, Dee Snider became the latest to decry such a move. He surely won't be the last. Said a rep for the Twisted Sister rocker / Celebrity Apprentice star:

  • Dee Snider Photo
  • Paul Ryan For Vice President

"It was brought to my attention today that Paul Ryan has been using client Dee Snider's composition 'We're Not Gonna Take It' in his political campaign to become the Vice President of The United States of America.

Dee does not support Paul Ryan. Accordingly, Dee has released this statement to Benjy Sarlin, campaign reporter for TPM in Washington, DC:

'I emphatically denounce Paul Ryan's use of my song 'Were Not Gonna Take It' as recorded by my band Twisted Sister. There is almost nothing on which I agree with Paul Ryan, except perhaps the use of the P90X.'"

The hilarious footnote to that statement refers to Ryan's personal training regimen ... check out Paul Ryan shirtless, the man's in good shape.

In any case, Paul can cross Twisted Sister off the list. The way this is going, he's going to cycle through dozens of jukebox heroes by election day.

Heck, Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello went out of his way to slam Ryan for merely saying he was a fan of the group in an interview.

Election 2012:

 

[Photos: WENN.com]

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Embattled Missouri Congressman Todd Akin is probably staying in the state's U.S. Senate race, but left the door open for his departure in an interview today.

“I’m never going to say everything that could possibly happen," Akin, under fire for his "legitimate rape" comment, said. "I don’t know the future, but I do know this."

"I know that party voters took a look at our hearts, understood who we were, had an opportunity to meet us in many different ways and made a decision."

“And it makes me uncomfortable to think that the party bosses are going to dictate who's running as opposed to the election process.”

Republicans are lining up to ask Akin, who won a three-way GOP primary this summer, to drop out against Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill.

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has distanced himself from Akin, and he's been asked not to show up at the party's convention in Tampa.

Akin, 65, says he'll skip the RNC, but insists he can still win the Senate seat and is staying in the race because of how he won the primary.

“I was outspent by a large amount in terms of media. Yet by standing on principle and putting politics aside and talking about the foundations of this country, the people of Missouri chose me to be their candidate,” he said.

In truth, while his comment was ignorant and ridiculous - he also said pregnant women rarely get pregnant because their body will "shut that whole thing down" - his political viewpoint differs little from the official Republican Party abortion position.

What do you think? Should Akin drop out?

 

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Draft language for the official 2012 Republican Party platform reportedly includes support for a constitutional ban on abortion without exclusions.

In other words, abortions would not be permitted even in cases of rape or incest.

The news comes amid the ongoing Todd Akin legitimate rape controversy and calls for the GOP Senate candidate to drop out of the race.

  • GOP 2012
  • Mitt Romney Wins Primary

Akin, who opposes all abortions, remarked that rape victims rarely get pregnant because the female body finds ways to "shut that whole thing down."

The GOP Congressman running against Sen. Claire McCaskill has faced calls to abandon his campaign from both parties after making the comment.

Despite the firestorm Akin ignited, leaked details on the Republican party's position reveal that nationally, Republicans generally agree with him:

"Faithful to the 'self-evident' truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed," the GOP platform states.

"We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment's protections apply to unborn children."

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Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin is facing criticism and calls to drop out after his shocking remarks about rape this week, but he has at least one supporter left:

Kirk Cameron.

Akin, who opposes abortion even for rape victims, said women are very unlikely to become pregnant from rape anyway, because “if it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.”

Many national Republicans, including presidential and vice presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, distanced themselves from Akin. Not Kirk.

cameron-akin

Cameron, who's made headlines for calling homosexuality destructive to society, and who also questions evolution, does know about media firestorms.

On CNN this morning, he said Akin merely "mis-phrased something and that he apologized and that [Akin] is clearly a pro-life advocate and I respect him."

Currently a member of Congress, Akin released a statement after the interview saying he “misspoke,” but hasn’t backed away from his remarks.

Despite calls on Akin to get out of the close U.S. Senate race in Missouri, so far he’s staying in, with Cameron saying he supports that decision.

“I’m the kind of person that believes that I would like to be evaluated by my entire career and my entire life, not two words that I would misspeak and then later apologize for,” Cameron told CNN. “So he’s in a tough spot.”

Well, if it were only "legitimate rape," maybe he'd have a case - as in he misspoke and meant a legitimately proven rape, not just a false accusation.

The female body has ways to shut it down, though? Tougher to explain away ... or take seriously anyone who thinks that's remotely the case.

What do you think: Should Akin drop out?