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10:10 AM PT: MA-05: In the previous Digest, we ran through a long list of possible Democrats who might run for Rep. Ed Markey's seat, should he prevail in the upcoming Senate special election. One name was mentioned in error, though: Medford Mayor Michael McGlynn announced a little while back that he would not make a bid for Congress. McGlynn, notes the Globe, briefly ran for the House in 1984, when Markey considered seeking the state's then-open Senate seat. But Markey ultimately backed down, allowing John Kerry—the man he is now hoping to replace—to succeed Paul Tsongas. McGlynn likewise abandoned his congressional hopes and later became mayor in 1988, serving ever since.

11:40 AM PT: AR-04: Democratic congressional recruitment in Arkansas last cycle was the pits—not a single candidate broke 40 percent in November, in a state that featured a 3 D, 1 R delegation as recently as 2010. Times, though, have changed in the Razorback State, and it may be a while before we elect another Dem there, but at least one guy is willing to consider a try: State Sen. Bruce Maloch says that if freshman GOP Rep. Tom Cotton runs for Senate, he'd "definitely be interested" in looking at the race.

If Cotton doesn't leave his seat open, though, then Maloch say he is (understandably) less enthused about the prospect of running. Despite serving in the House for less than two months, though, Cotton may well seek a promotion (many news reports suggest he's the preferred choice of the Republican establishment), so Maloch may get his shot. But seeing as Mitt Romney won this seat by a punishing 62-36 margin, he'll still have a hell of a time even if he doesn't have to face an incumbent.

11:57 AM PT: CA-21: It looks like Democrats won't get the guy who once was their top choice for California's 21st next year: State Sen. Michael Rubio is resigning to take a job as a lobbyist for Chevron, and he pretty clearly has no interest in politics anymore ("my current professional path has left little opportunity to be home for those who are most important to me"). Rubio specifically mentioned his youngest daughter, who was born with Down syndrome in late 2011, leading Rubio to abandon plans to run for Congress last cycle. That left Democrats without any strong candidates, ultimately handing this blue-tilting seat to Republican David Valadao. But even without Rubio, Valadao will be a top target for Dems next year.

A special election will also be necessary for Rubio's state Senate seat, which looks to be safely Democratic.

12:06 PM PT: Unfortunately, Rubio's departure does temporarily deprive California Democrats of super-majority status in the Senate thanks to some other vacancies, but we'll get it back shortly.

12:20 PM PT: WATN?: Justin Lamar Sternad, the fake Democrat put up by ex-Rep. David Rivera to try to harm Joe Garcia in the primary, was expected be indicted on Friday afternoon on charges of violating federal campaign finance laws. Sternad, a conservative without any money, somehow managed to pay for a host of mailers attacking Garcia (on incredibly specious bullshit), but the Miami Herald's reporting made it seem all but certain that the ethically challenged Rivera was behind the whole scheme. Unfortunately, according to the Herald, River is not named in the indictment, but perhaps he'll be charged separately at a later time.

12:38 PM PT: MA-Sen: Last week, I wondered about a discrepancy in the partisan composition of two MA-Sen Democratic primary polls: one from PPP, the other from MassINC. While the wording in MassINC's toplines PDF was a little confusing (they referred to all of their demographic categories as "questions"), it turns out that they were using party registration figures while PPP, as always, simply relied on partisan self-identification from its respondents. As you'd expect, these two metrics can yield very different results, and in a separate item, MassINC shows just how divergent they can be:

Using data from an October poll, MassINC compared partisan self-ID with actual registration data. As you can see, only 80 percent of self-identified Democrats are actually registered as such, while 13 percent are independents. Somewhat similarly, 76 percent of Republicans are officially members of the GOP while 8 percent are indies and, weirdly, 4 percent are enrolled Democrats! Meanwhile, about three quarters of self-professed independents are members of third parties or are "unenrolled" in either party, but a full quarter are actually registered Dems or Republicans.

It's for this reason that many pollsters (like the aforementioned PPP) prefer party self-ID to registration. Indeed, about 20 states don't even have registration by party, so this kind of data doesn't even exist. And in certain places, like some Southern states, there's still a considerable "Dixiecrat overhang," as I like to call it, whereby lots of voters are registered as Democrats due to tradition, even though they probably would never pull the lever for Team Blue. For instance, almost 55 percent of Kentucky voters are still enrolled as Democrats, despite the state's conservative nature.

It's not clear to me why MassINC likes to use registration figures, particularly since they themselves acknowledge that the overlap with partisan self-identification "is not close to perfect." Indeed, given how fluid party ID can be, it seems like you can miss real movement if you rely on registration instead of self-ID, since it's a lot easier to change your mind about what party you identify with when talking to a pollster versus actually bothering to fill out a new voter registration form.

2:08 PM PT: IL-02: So here's a copy of that mailer from the Illinois State Rifle Association, the local affiliate of the NRA that just sent out some lit on behalf of ex-Rep. Debbie Halvorson in the Democratic primary. It's a cheap two-sided postcard, printed in black ink (and sporting a union bug!) that weirdly conveys the message that state Sen. Toi Hutchinson is still in the race. (The piece went out just the other day, after Hutchinson dropped out, so it seems like there's no excuse.) Mostly it's just an attack on NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg, whose super PAC has spent some $2 million on the race.

IL-02 ISRA mailer pt. 1
The back side features a wall of text (no photos, even), the nut of which is this:
The Bloomberg plan is to create a nanny state where the government controls what you eat, what you drink, how you travel, your health-care — Bloomberg wants to control it all.
Other than paranoid black helicopter-fearing maniacs (who don't typically vote in Democratic primaries), please tell me who is going to be receptive to this message? Is this seriously the best the NRA can muster?

2:13 PM PT: Hahah oh man. Just above the address area, they manage to misspell the current month as "Februay"!

2:24 PM PT: Oh sweet Jesus. They misspell "Halvorson" as "Halvorsen," too—in a four-line paragraph where they also spell it properly! What a bunch of clowns. If this is the best the NRA has to offer, then Democrats really ought to feel a lot more gung-ho about taking them on in the future.

2:29 PM PT: NE-Sen, -Gov, -01: Republican state Auditor Mike Foley says he's openly considering any of four electoral possibilities next year: Senate, governor, the 1st Congressional District (presumably if Rep. Jeff Fortenberry looks for a promotion of his own), or another term as auditor. Republicans (and Democrats) are all still waiting to see if term-limited Gov. Dave Heineman runs for Senate, though, as that will inform a lot of other decisions.

2:49 PM PT: AR-Gov: During his unsuccessful attempt to unseat then-Sen. Blanche Lincoln in the 2010 Democratic primary, unions were some of ex-LG Bill Halter's biggest backers. So it's little surprise to see one big labor group already getting behind him in his bid for governor: the United Steelworkers, who represent some 850,000 workers nationwide.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    Get the Daily Kos Elections Digest in your inbox every weekday. Sign up here.

    by David Nir on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 06:00:08 AM PST

  •  electoral college (10+ / 0-)

    there is majority support in the state house here to join the interstate compact designed to circumvent the electoral college, but only 13/30 senators are on board so far.  Senate President Peter Courtney is against it, saying it would cost Oregon all of our clout in deciding elections.  I hate to break it to him, but we don't really have any right now anyway.

    ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

    by James Allen on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 06:35:38 AM PST

    •  Oregon hasn't been much of a swing state (5+ / 0-)

      Since, like, 2004.

    •  The problem is we need red states to sign on (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, askew, lordpet8, gabjoh, MichaelNY

      Blue States alone are not going to be sufficient in getting this system in place.

      •  We can get to 270 electoral votes (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        itskevin, GoUBears

        Easily without any truly red states. Of course, many of these states are currently controlled by Republicans, but we don't need "red" states to get over 270 in the NPVIC.

        25, Practical Progressive Democrat (-9.38, -8.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

        by HoosierD42 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 07:30:10 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  this should be pushed in WV, then (9+ / 0-)

        it would be diabolical for the state Dems to give their states EVs a good use in potentially awarding the presidency to a Dem while their state votes for the Republican.

        Deep red states may be more likely to join than swing states, who wouldn't want to give up their status.

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 07:50:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly (5+ / 0-)

          there's no hope of getting swing states to sign on to the compact.  It will have to be a combination of deep blue and deep red states.  So far only the deep blue have passed it, but with recent articles pointing out the EV advantages that Obama had, I'm hopeful some Republicans start to realize that going to a national popular vote might work to their advantage.

          Ultimately, I just care about fairness, even if a Republican does manage to win the popular vote while losing the electoral college.  It's simply wrong that most of the country has effectively no choice in picking the president.

    •  When's the last time Oregon was a swing state? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      Don't remember Obama, campaign their last year. If my memory serves me correct. Courtney need to get with the program and stop getting could feet.

      That's why 2014 is crucial in getting key Governorship, along with other issues.

      NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

      by BKGyptian89 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:22:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Why would we want this? (0+ / 0-)

      ...especially considering the way President Obama's electoral college results significantly outperformed his popular vote total?

      •  Because we support direct democracy and (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        OGGoldy, Skaje, Stephen Wolf, R30A, MichaelNY

        the concept of one-person, one-vote.

        Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

        by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:33:39 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The electoral votes almost always (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lordpet8

          Exceed the popular vote margin in a presidential election.

        •  Well, okay (0+ / 0-)

          But there are plenty of philosophical arguments for the electoral college too.

          Just think of it as a way of forcing candidates to appeal to a wide coalition of interests. It punishes candidates who have only sectionalist appeal. For example, if Mitt Romney had won the popular vote while losing the EC, it most likely would have been because he had run up huge margins in the South, whereas Obama would have performed more evenly across most of the rest of the country. I guess there's a case to be made for why each man should be awarded an election like that, but for me the candidate with the widest appeal should at times (say, once a century or so) beat the candidate with the greater numerical vote.

          As for direct democracy—that's by no means an obvious thing to support. I mean, you can't just say it's a first principle that people are all agreed upon.

          •  philosophical arguments for the electoral college? (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Stephen Wolf, jncca, Chachy, Inoljt, MichaelNY

            After any of the world wars, revolutions or democracy movments of the world, has anyone from this country ever advocated: "Hey, you should create an electoral college."

            Nope, and the reason is because it is a truly stupid, archaic concept that makes no sense whasoever in the modern world.

            Good ideas get copied and stolen and reused.  No one has ever thought to pattern even their junior high school elections after the electoral college.

            Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

            by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:18:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  In fact pretty much every element of our govt (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Chachy

              including presidentialism, plurality elections, etc. has not been copied by successfully democratizing states, and if it has it's led to crises over individuals (particularly presidentialism).

              Our institutions blow and it's incredibly telling that countries such as nearly every European one that democratized after WW2 didn't adopt them and that the ones that did, such as Latin America, have had countless coups and civil wars.

              •  Our institutions do not blow (0+ / 0-)

                When taken into context with American culture. They work for us. It just also happens that they work for literally no other country or culture worldwide.

                23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:47:39 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Like they worked during the civil war? (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Skaje, MichaelNY, gabjoh

                  like they worked during Bush v Gore?

                  Like they worked out to give Republicans control of the House last year?

                  Or how about if Republicans ever lose the electoral college but win the popular vote, do you think that won't result in a constitutional crisis?

                  No, our institutions blow compared to the realistic alternative that nearly every European country has chosen to adopt, namely proportional representation and parliamentary government.

                  •  ... (0+ / 0-)

                    Like I said when they are taken into context with American culture.

                    1. Bush v. Gore as a decision sucked, yes, but one decision does not tar the entirety of how the court operates. The typical position in opposition to the court is that judges should be elected. Are judges elected in most places? No. In fact, judges are elected at higher frequency in the U.S. than almost anywhere else - and there are bigger problems with judicial election than non-election.

                    2. In this case, it is the lack of institutions (non-partisan redistricting boards) that did so in combination with the relative distribution of partisan voters.

                    3. No, I do not. Just as it didn't when Hayes beat Tilden.

                    4. Do you think that Americans would want proportional representation? Or even a mixed-system? No. They wouldn't, because American cultural and the American cultural heritage very much supports and idealizes the direct link to their representative through a districted and first-past-the-post approach.

                    23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                    by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:59:17 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Oops (0+ / 0-)

                      Scratch the Tilden example.

                      23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                      by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:00:12 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Has there ever been a time (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Berliozian

                        Where the Republican won the popular vote but lost the electoral college?

                        No. But I still don't think they'd cause a constitutional crisis.

                        23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                        by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:01:35 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Lack of institutions are the same thing (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      MichaelNY

                      as the institution itself. That's like saying "it's the lack of the 13th amendment that caused slavery!"

                      I'm not talking just about the Bush v Gore decision by itself, but the fact that A) We had a candidate who was clearly the preference of the majority and B) won the fucking election but saw it stolen by the opposition. That shit should never happen and wouldn't have had such dire consequences if we didn't have a winner takes all and fucks the other side over system.

                      And yes, I absolutely think Americans would want proportional representation, but more than anything they most likely have no concept of it. Who the hell wouldn't want the ability to make more choices and when they do make a choice to have it count regardless of where they live instead of the vast majority seeing their votes "wasted."

                      Your cultural heritage argument reminds me of the defense of Jim Crow laws and it's not even accurate. In poll after poll that bothers to ask it, respondents like the idea of having a viable third party to chose from even if they're already hard partisans.

                      And finally, culture is heavily impacted by institutions and you can just look at the difference between the politics of the northeastern united states and Canada in the 1800s when they had a very common cultural origin but different outcomes, or today you could look at the differences between demographically similar states.

                  •  I think the Civil War was unavoidable (0+ / 0-)

                    not matter what system of government we had. Ours probably postponed it for much longer than just about any other would. Founding a United States that included slavery was like swallowing something toxic; it was allows going to come back up, and when it did, it was always going to be ugly.

                    I actually think Bush v. Gore was an example of our system working well. Look at the map, and it's amazing what a limited base of support Gore had. He was unable to win anywhere but the West Coast and Northeast (both liberal strongholds), and upper Midwest. Oh, and New Mexico. That, to me, is not a national coalition. The two coasts, far apart as they may be geographically, are very similar in terms of their advanced economies, (relative) lack of religiosity, and other attitudes. A candidate who barely make inroads in the country's interior doesn't deserve to win.

                    And as for the way the election was settled in the Supreme Court, let me say that if that doesn't prove America is something special, nothing will. In 9 out of 10 countries, that's a civil war or armed uprising right there. It's a miracle (and I don't use that word lightly) that people have so much faith in America's institutions and political culture, and that they respect judicial independence and the finality of rule of law so instinctively. No one would expect half the country to accept the result of the 2000 election and treat Bush as a legitimate president. And yet they did.

                    I'll give you that gerrymandering sucks as much as advertised.

                    •  ahh I love this argument! (6+ / 0-)

                      "well you don't deserve to win because you can't appeal to real 'murrica, dammit!"

                      Living in Kyoto-06 (Japan), voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

                      by sapelcovits on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:23:12 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  No, that's just not true (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Skaje, MichaelNY

                      I'll point you and everyone else to Juan Linz's seminal paper, the Perils of Presidentialism which in a nutshell demonstrates how almost every single western hemisphere country that adopted presidentialism upon democratization either had a coup or a civil war, ours included.

                      Then you can look at all of the European states that had newly installed democracies after WW2 or other post-colonial countries that didn't adopt presidential systems and pretty much none of them have had the same thing happen.

                      The civil war was caused because we have a winner take all system and it gives the losing side zero incentive to cooperate and the winning side zero incentive to compromise. The clear majority of the electoral power in this country was opposed to slaveholder interests, yet our institutions purposefully and continually made sure that slaveholding interests had perpetually equal say.

                      •  Well, we might be saying the same thing (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        About the Civil War. Certainly, a parliamentary or otherwise more majoritarian system would have ended slavery sooner. But since I'm convinced the South wouldn't have ended slavery without calling to arms, in practice that just means the Civil War would have happened sooner.

                        As it was, features specific to our system (I'm thinking especially of equal representation in the Senate and dual federalism) almost certainly postponed the Civil War—but, as you say, preserved slavery for longer.

                    •  Oh god (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Stephen Wolf, James Allen, MichaelNY

                      You're really trying to say that Bush had a better national coalition than Gore did?  That somehow Bush's ability to win all the lightly populated interior states is more significant than Gore's ability to win California, New York, etc.?  You really are just arguing that rural people's votes should count more than city people's votes.  You're basically arguing that Democrats should not be allowed to run Illinois since all they win is Chicago, and Republicans largely win the rest of the state.  I'm surprised you aren't pulling out the old Bush-Gore county-winner map that was so popular in conservative circles after the election.

                      Obama barely made any other advances into the country's interior, aside from Colorado and Nevada.  McCain and Romney won almost all of the interior states that Bush did.  The county map is pretty similar.  It all just comes down to this idea that Democrats should be punished for living close together in cities, and Republicans rewarded for spreading out over larger geographical areas.

                      As for the "miracle" that we avoided civil war over a contested election, I think it's along the same reasons that riots are generally rare in America, but more common elsewhere.  I just chalk that up to Americans being ignorant and not caring about government as much.  I can't imagine what would actually get Americans in the street in a proportion similar to Greece.

                      •  Obviously, I don't think people's votes (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        BoswellSupporter

                        should be weighted more heavily based on where they happen to live. It is true, though, that big cities are largely homogenous with on another in a way that isn't true of the country at large. Once again, the operative words for me are "broad coalition." New York and Chicago have more in common than various parts of the Bush coalition—say, the Deep South, Utah, and a white collar suburb—have with one another.

                        Personally, I think any Democrats ought to take a look at that county map before they go to bed each night :)
                        Seriously. Doesn't it bother you that so much of the country is off limits to us? Are we even asking for rural America's votes? Is there anything in our platform for them?

                        (The parallel exercise for any Republican who wants to do some soul-searching, by the way, is asking himself why urban voters and minorities are rejecting them by 60-80% margins. We talk about that plenty, but we seem to lack self-awareness when it comes closer to home.)

                        As for the second bit—you seem to be seeing the glass more than half-empty... Greece riots and America doesn't, and somehow this is laudatory for Greece?

                        •  Yeah, New York City is definitely more (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Skaje, sapelcovits, MichaelNY

                          homogeneous than rural Kansas.

                          20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
                          politicohen.com
                          Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
                          UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.4.12, -4.92

                          by jncca on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:07:21 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Greece (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Berliozian, Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

                          The line about Greece was just a comparison point, saying that America isn't as prone to mass civil disobedience in recent times.  Not making a value judgment on Greece, or saying we should emulate that.

                          Anyway, I really can't express just much strongly I disagree with you on your opinion that somehow Gore's coalition was more homogeneous and less varied than Bush's.  jnnca's above remark just about sums up how off-base that viewpoint is.

                          Gore won African-Americans in the Deep South, Native Americans in the Dakotas, Mexican-Americans in Texas, Puerto Ricans in New York, Pacific Islanders in Hawaii, Japanese-Americans in California, and Jewish voters in Florida.  And yeah, he won a ton of white voters as well, from Oregon to Iowa to Maine.  He won the auto workers of Detroit, the casino workers of Las Vegas, the professors of Berkeley, the steelworkers of Duluth.  Gore showed he was the choice of cities as varied as Little Rock, Albuquerque, Buffalo, Miami, Nashville, Madison, and Kansas City.  He won gays and lesbians, atheists, Catholics, Buddhists.  51 million Americans voted for him, and his coalition was every bit as broad as Bush's.  How can you say that he didn't deserve to win, just because he didn't win Nebraska?

                          •  You know what? (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Skaje, Stephen Wolf

                            You're really making me think hard about my ideas right now, and I love that. I also hadn't realized until just now that if you take away the "extra" two points for each state that weights the EC towards smaller states, Gore wins in 2000. Which means that I sort of was arguing for giving undue weight to rural areas without knowing it (I'm all for giving due weight, but not undue weight.)

                            I'm not ready at all, though, to abandon the countryside to Republicans. And I think this is an area where Democrats need to do a MUCH better job selling themselves, rather than chasing people away with talk about "clinging" guns and religion, etc.—if only because the House maps aren't changing anytime soon!

                            Anyway, I'm heading out now, but I want you to know I really enjoyed this little exchange...

                        •  In any case (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY

                          The reason we lose rural voters is because they favor low taxes, reduced spending on education and healthcare, foreign military intervention, restrictions on abortion and gay rights, teaching creationism in schools, free access to firearms, and doing nothing to control emissions.

                          We can ask for their votes, but we won't get it.  There is nothing in our platform for them, and that is the way it should be.  No party can appeal to the entire country unless it truly stands for nothing more than winning at any cost.

                •  "they work for us" (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Stephen Wolf

                  we can disagree on that.

                  ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

                  by James Allen on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:26:00 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  It's funny (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                lordpet8, Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

                how American History class for me in high school basically consisted of non-stop gushing about how perfect and superior the American system of government was compared to the rest of the world, that our president, constitution, electoral college, and other oddities made us so much better than, say Great Britain.

                It was a strange realization for me a few years afterwards that what I had learned was more akin to propaganda.  Real education would come from me basically unlearning everything from before, and looking at things with a more critical eye.

                And then of course there's the way the history classes in general gloss over stuff like the USA's treatment of Native Americans, slavery's role in the Civil War, segregation and racism, the USA's invasions of other countries in the 1980s, etc.  It's a strange feeling indeed realizing that you've basically been lied to for years.

                •  It's honestly very frightening (4+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  James Allen, Skaje, MichaelNY, gabjoh

                  American high school history and civics is pure bullshit designed to make people complacent with what is a very imperfect system. And yes, our history books consistently gloss over the genocide and war crimes we committed against Native Americans, Filipinos, even German and Japanese civilians in WW2, etc, etc.

                  And that doesn't even begin to touch on how it indoctrinates people into believing that capitalism is totally perfect. I will always remember how my history teacher defended Herbert Hoover and in retrospect it makes me want to scream wtf.

                •  I think it depends on the teacher (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY

                  We didn't gloss over anything that you say was glossed over in your class.

                  20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
                  politicohen.com
                  Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
                  UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.4.12, -4.92

                  by jncca on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:28:51 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That's probably because you went to school in CA (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    I'm assuming (if not then maybe it doesn't apply) which due to its size and liberalness relative to the country is rather autonomous for textbook purposes, or at least was when the majority of us went to high school. In general though, southern states, even including Democratic controlled North Carolina at the time, and pretty much anywhere that Republicans have significant influence have text books and mandated (at the state level) curriculum that has a very imperialistic or "pro-American" bias.

                  •  The teacher matters (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

                    but moreso the textbook.  Our textbooks were insanely jingoist, and that was basically what was lectured on, tested on, etc.

                    This was true for me from middle school on to high school.  (Hawaii and South Carolina respectively).

          •  The problem is (4+ / 0-)

            the EC does not force candidates to appeal to a wide coalition of interests.  Because of the arbitrary boundaries and sizes of the states, it's only forced candidates to appeal to a handful of states.  An outsized number of them are demographically similar states clumped in the midwest (Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Iowa).  Is this representative of the country?  There are no northeast states anymore, no west coast states, no Deep South states.  California, Texas, and New York are irrelevant.

            Someone can easily sweep the EC by winning the midwest swing states, without appealing to anywhere else.  If anything, the EC has fostered more regionalism than it has averted.

            States just don't go 90%+ for one candidate anymore, like they did in the days of the Jim Crow South.  There is no danger of a candidate winning the national popular vote by only running up the vote in one area, it just can't happen anymore.

            You bring up the idea of Romney running up the vote in the South, but he really can't with so many African-Americans there.

            •  Distinguish between does (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Skaje, MichaelNY

              and can happen. It certainly could happen, just not in today's world.

              The problem is that we structure our electoral college in a way that does not just emerge with a disparity between the actual winner and the popular vote winner only when that popular vote winner is a regional or regional-esque candidate. It happens in more cases than that, such as when Bush defeated Gore despite both candidates having broad coalitions.

              23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

              by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:44:45 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Maybe it's too obvious a point to make (0+ / 0-)

              But I would say, YES, those Midwestern swing states ARE representative of the county, politically at least, because they ARE swing states. The proof is in the pudding. If New England was 50/50 politically, then New England would be the most representative of the country. Texas clearly isn't representative of the country as a whole, or else it would be a swing state.

              I like to think of the goal of multi-party democracy as being to find the average point of view of all the citizens, a sort of balancing act of all available opinions. By definition, there has to be a fulcrum somewhere, and it's only understandable that most of the action would be right at that fulcrum.

              •  But that's just it (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY

                the electoral college doesn't produce multi-party democracy. It produces a two-party system and in presidential elections the vast majority of the electorate has no chance of having their vote for the minority party in their state affect the outcome. It is effectively disenfranchisement.

                •  Part of this is true (0+ / 0-)

                  The big on how the electoral college produces two parties.

                  But do you even know why?

                  And do you realize that path dependence practically removes the possibility that if we remove the electoral college that suddenly independent candidacies would be successful?

                  23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                  by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:06:44 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  No I realize all of that (0+ / 0-)

                    You need some form of preference voting, or rapidly changing political coalitions to produce a genuine multiparty presidential election, both of which we absolutely do not have. But that doesn't make the electoral college any better; I'm just saying that it's one more thing that reinforces the two party system which I'd wager that the majority of Americans would be opposed to if they knew of the alternatives other countries use.

                    •  I was actually looking for an answer to the (0+ / 0-)

                      "do you know why":

                      Duverger's Law, in a way, applies here because the states effectively operate as "districts" in a Presidential election.

                      23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                      by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:58:08 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Oh sure, but it is only reinforcing what's already (0+ / 0-)

                        there. Namely that we have plurality elections so you're already going to have the pressure that embodies Duverger's law in places like Canada and the UK, except it's going to be pushed on a national scale thanks to presidentialism and the electoral college. You can certainly look at particular ridings in Canada or seats in the UK where they're effectively two party seats, but the parties that are the main two differ by region.

              •  The people of the country are representative of (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                wwmiv, Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY, pademocrat

                the people in the country.

                It makes no sense to think some smaller group of swing states better represents the country than the country is illogical in the extreme.

                And yes, Texas is representative of the country, part of it anyway, and is certainly more representative of the country overall than Iowa or NH are.

                And the smallish number of middle of the road or swingish folks are not representative of the country.  That's pure fiction.  The country is substantially very polarized, and if anything those polarized interests should have an impact that relates to their numbers.

                Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

                by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:06:04 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  Why should the fast majority of people's votes (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen, MichaelNY

        have absolutely no influence on the election? Every single vote should count, not just people in Ohio.

        •  I do think there is room for improvement (0+ / 0-)

          with the electoral college. What if, for example, elections were decided by popular vote by state? In other words, whichever candidate wins Ohio gets all the popular votes won in that state, but the loser don't get any. Then tally it nationally.

          Has anyone heard of this idea before, by the way? It seems like the best way of preserving the most important features of the electoral college while making the margins count for something too.

          •  That's the same way the electoral college works... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Skaje, MichaelNY

            the popular vote winner in each state gets all of the electoral votes.

            The electoral college should be indefensible based on "first principles" since it's sole purpose was disenfranchisement and was instituted so that southern state's could get that 3/5ths vote for every non-voting slave added to their electoral clout. No other modern democracy has one and they don't suffer any problems solely for that reason. Same goes for the filibuster.

            As tommypaine's signature says, nobody of importance was absurd enough to propose establishing an electoral college in any newly democratized state.

          •  That's worse. (0+ / 0-)

            It would significantly bias the college towards Democrats, I'd imagine.

            23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

            by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:16:14 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  no, no, no (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Skaje, jncca, MichaelNY

            If you're going to use popular votes, use popular votes. The system you propose would lead to perverse results like this:

            Obama gets 8 million votes in CA, Romney gets 6 million = 14 million popular votes for Obama

            Obama gets 8 million votes in CA, Romney gets 1 million = 9 million popular votes for Obama

            Romney actually has an incentive to urge his CA voters to stay home!

            There is no intellectually respectable justification for keeping any aspect of the electoral college. Kill it with fire and use the popular vote, as we do for every office below the presidency.

            SSP poster. 43, new CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

            by sacman701 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:17:34 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No, that's not what I'm proposing (0+ / 0-)

              I'm saying that if Obama wins 8 million votes in California, and Romney wins 6 million, Obama gets to add his to his national total, and Romney's just disappear.

            •  Yeah that's crazy (0+ / 0-)

              It would change our elections to actually being which side could depress their own voters the most.  Would certainly be interesting, but crazy.  Obama would basically have campaigned across the South telling African-Americans to stay home, lest their votes pad Romney's numbers.

              •  I'm sure that would have made him popular (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY
                campaigned across the South telling African-Americans to stay home
                Especially older black people - the best way to make sure they vote is to tell them they can't. (Good historical reasons for that too, obviously.)

                Vaccinate your child. Vaccinate yourself. | Pro-transit, pro-gun, anti-NRA young black urban progressive | SSP/DKE | -9, -7.79 | MO-05 | Yard signs don't vote. | Hutchinson for IL-02!

                by gabjoh on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:57:27 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  For the sake of argument though (0+ / 0-)

            your proposal would have thrown out nearly half of votes cast and given Obama 65.5% of this new electoral vote, compared to the 61.7% of the electoral votes he actually won. So I don't really see how this is any different except that it very slightly reduces the advantage of small states.

            The electoral college is fundamentally unfair as is the two party system, and no neither of them produces moderation. Just look at the Republican party.

          •  So winning a state by one vote (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

            would be the same as winning it by three million votes?

            Sorry, not a good idea.  

            Since there are no slave states anymore, there is zero logical reason to support the electoral college, including small state ideas.  Millions were spent in NH and zilch in ID.

            Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

            by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:21:39 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, with a national popular vote, (0+ / 0-)

              millions would be spent in NYC, LA, and Chicago, and zilch in New Hampshire AND Idaho.

              •  Um, no, that doesn't logically follow at all (6+ / 0-)

                If you think Obama would have spent no money in Idaho's college towns, you aren't undertsanding the basics of modern politics.

                Money will be spent where it makes the biggest impact.  For instance, you get a big bang for the buck in ND media markets compared to major cities.

                Candidates from both parties would campaign in areas of all states.  Dems in Laramie and Austin and Athens and Lawrence, Reps in Orange County, eastern WA and OR, upstate NY, etc etc.

                One thing is certain: a pure polular vote election will lead to money being spent in far, far more places than currently.

                Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

                by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:47:48 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Not really (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Skaje, MichaelNY

                Lots of money would be spent in NYC, LA, and Chicago. Some money, but less, would be spent in Idaho and New Hampshire. Money would be spent more or less in proportion to the number of voters in an area. That is how campaigns compete within states for electoral votes, after all, and how gubernatorial and senate candidates compete for statewide office.

                What you're asking for is for voters in sparsely populated areas to have more say than voters in densely populated areas. Why?

                You don't fight the fights you can win. You fight the fights that need fighting. -President Andrew Sheppard (D-Wisconsin)

                by Gpack3 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:51:31 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, this is increasingly not how campaigns work (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY, gabjoh

                  Take microtargeting for instance. Did Obama only contest the big cities in Ohio? No, they microtargeted every single voter they thought worth pursuing even if they were in the middle of nowhere. People in rural areas or small states would still be impacted because having a popular vote would liberate us from thinking of voters geographically except for broadcast TV ads which would become increasingly less important.

                  •  Microtargeting still requires a lot of resources (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    In 2008, for example, the Obama campaign had about 15 full time staff on the ground in my battleground state congressional district. If there were NPV, you'd see this in every CD, but while the NYC CDs cover a few blocks, Montana and Alaska's are huge in geographic extent.

                    You don't fight the fights you can win. You fight the fights that need fighting. -President Andrew Sheppard (D-Wisconsin)

                    by Gpack3 on Mon Feb 25, 2013 at 04:01:57 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Exactly (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  sacman701, MichaelNY

                  Governor and Senate elections do not focus entirely on the cities, ignoring the rural areas of the states.  There is indeed more focus on the cities, because that is where more people live, but it is often cheap to advertise in the rural areas, and the margins still matter.

                  That is the most pertinent question...why must presidential elections be run so differently from governor and senate elections?  We don't need state electoral colleges to ensure that their statewide elections have "wide appeal".

            •  And that's not what my "proposal" would do (0+ / 0-)

              It would create a double set of incentives. First, the strong need to win states period (just like today's electoral college). But, once you think you are going to win a state, or at least have a chance at it, an incentive to turn out your supporters and drive up the margins. If, on the other hand, you are sure to lose a state, you have an incentive for keeping your opponent's numerical quantity of votes down.

          •  I got a better idea (5+ / 0-)

            if you're absolutely set on keeping the electoral college, have it so that every state allocates their EVs proportionally to the statewide results.  To make it truly fair, we would have to allow fractional electoral votes, otherwise the small states would always break 2-1.  So the margins in each state would matter, every state would count, and oh yeah, this would always result in the national popular vote winner winning.

            I really don't understand how anyone can seriously say that sometimes the popular vote loser should win anyway, because somehow they have a wider appeal, despite losing?  It's simple to me: if you've lost the national vote, you don't have the wider appeal.  Thinking otherwise reminds me of the Romney crowd saying that they had the better mandate since they won certain cherry-picked demographic groups, and supposedly those groups count more...

      •  Well first of all I don't care if you support it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        I don't think it is something that is objectively good.  As for your reasoning, that pretty much always happens.

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:30:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Should McConnell be re-elected by acclamation? (0+ / 0-)

    Are Kentucky down ticket Dems better off if McConnell has no Dem challenger?

    Keystone XL Pipeline - Canada gets the money, Asia gets the oil, America gets the toxic refinery pollution and potential for a pipeline leak ecological disaster.

    by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 06:38:41 AM PST

    •  Heck no. (5+ / 0-)

      He could use that money on other Senate races across the nation and also reinvest in the local state GOP to help build up a better organization.

      "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

      by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:52:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Force McConnell to use his own money for himself (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WisJohn, abgin, MichaelNY

        That's about the only real advantage of a Judd candidacy.

        Ashley Judd, if she's the only one interested in running against Mitch McConnell, is effectively a federal version of Lori Compas, the professional photographer-turned-political activist who forced Scott Fitzgerald, the Republican floor leader of the Wisconsin State Senate, to use his own campaign resources in the 2012 Wisconsin State Senate recall elections, despite the fact that Fitzgerald's state senate district is usually about 10 points more Republican than Wisconsin as a whole is and nobody with a D beside their name is going to win Fitzgerald's state senate district barring a major scandal or complete collapse of the WI GOP.

        Had it not been for Compas and her small group of volunteers getting a recall petition on Fitzgerald, Fitzgerald would have lent his campaign resources to Van Wanggaard, a Republican state senator in a much bluer district that was also facing a recall election, and Wanggaard would have probably survived the recall attempt against him, however, because Fitzgerald had to fend off a recall attempt of his own, Wanggaard was forced to use his own campaign resources in his recall election, and he lost to Democratic challenger John Lehman by less than 1,000 votes.

        Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

        by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:13:18 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  should "to be named later" in GA? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Stephen Wolf

      Should Susan Collins?  We don't have candidates in those states either.  Why aren't we panicking over those states?  Oh yeah, the election is 21 months away.

      ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

      by James Allen on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:51:28 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  IL-02 Predictions? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    atdnext, itskevin, gabjoh

    I'm going with something along the lines of Kelly 57, Halverson 35, Beale 8.

  •  MT - SEN (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    Is Steve Daines gearing up for a Senate run?  Greg Giroux is reporting he just set up a Super PAC. He would be the strongest GOPer according to the recent PPP poll.

  •  Hey! It is a Live Digest displaying (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BeloitDem, MichaelNY

    how many electoral votes Ross Perot got in both 1992 and 1996.

    Farm boy, 20, who hit the city to go to college, WI-03 (home, voting), WI-02 (college), -7.00, -3.13, Coya shouldn't have been sent home.

    by WisJohn on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 07:33:50 AM PST

  •  AR-04: Democratic State Senator Bruce Maloch (12+ / 0-)

    may run. To be honest, we have never seen what this district will do when we run a modern 21st century Democrat who cares about his or her race. Its unlikely that we actually pick it up, even if Cotton retires, but we need to seriously contest these kind of seats if we want to win the House.

    http://atr.rollcall.com/...

    •  And he won't endanger (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gabjoh, MichaelNY

      his Senate Seat for a possible GOP pickup?

      "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

      by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:47:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Does it matter? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gabjoh, MichaelNY

        The GOP has the Arkansas legislature and the governor's veto can be overruled with a simple majority.

        23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

        by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:00:44 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It matters a good deal (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lordpet8, gabjoh, MichaelNY

          it's not like the NC GOP where they're united for destructive policies; some actually want good governance.  Democrats here still are given some key chairmanships in both houses (they have a majority and a Chair on the Ed Committee in the State House for instance) and the joint budget committee is 50/50.  In the State House, Democrats helped elect a bipartisan Republican speaker rather than a partisan one.

          "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

          by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:05:52 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Well, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, DCCyclone

        we probably would have lost the seat with Obama atop the ballot but won it with Blanche Lincoln atop the ballot.

  •  NV-01: Apparently, Chuck Todd mentioned... (4+ / 0-)

    Last year's explosive Democratic Primary that wasn't earlier this AM on MSNBC. It's even more sorted than how Nathan Gonzales described it. And even though Ruben Kihuen dropped out of NV-01 rather quickly last year, this may be a sign of what's to come in terms of Nevada's changing demographics and the changing balance of power within Nevada's Democratic Party.

  •  NV-Sen / NV-01 counterfactual (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    drhoosierdem, dc1000, pademocrat

    If Dina Titus and had run for Senate and Shelly Berkley had run for house, would they both have won? I mean, the "ethics" charges against Berkley were bogus, but clearly Republicans convinced a lot of people.

  •  Phila-Campaign Finance (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gabjoh, MichaelNY

    Federal judge upholds City's longstanding ban on political contributions by police officers, citing past problems with corruption and fear of coerced contributions. Decision here; a similar ban as to firefighter political activity was struck down in 2003.

  •  Random thought (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BennyToothpick, dc1000, MichaelNY

    What will be the first state legislature we win back in the deep South? If we ever do that is. Allotting a lot of time I would go with Louisiana but it is a tough call.  

    •  Louisiana is a weird case (4+ / 0-)

      Generally, the Governor's party gets control of the state House.  It doesn't really matter who controls the body.  

      •  And even when Dems controlled the house (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        By numbers, there were still Republican chairs of committees. Louisiana is just weird with its porous party lines.

        25, Practical Progressive Democrat (-9.38, -8.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

        by HoosierD42 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:37:41 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  what about the South in general? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drhoosierdem, pademocrat, MichaelNY

      With time I'll say North Carolina then Florida.

      NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

      by BKGyptian89 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:38:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Maybe South Carolina I would venture (7+ / 0-)

      considering we have the best chance there of actually electing a Democratic governor who can block a gerrymander.

      I'd say Mississippi is last given its odd year elections followed by Alabama given how red it is and how conservadems have started voting straight ticket.

      So South Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi in descending likelihood.

      •  I think MS won't be last (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wwmiv, BeloitDem, Chachy, pademocrat, MichaelNY

        AL is probably last.  MS on the other hand is gradually getting more Dem over the past decade or so.

        "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

        by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:49:50 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's funny how you mention MS (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen, KingofSpades, MichaelNY

        it was one of the first state senates we won back on a technicality (due to party swtiching). You see the GOP had assumed control of the senate with a few party swtiching Dems but the Democrats came back and gained 3 seats in 2007 putting them back in control till 2 more Democrats left to become Republicans in 2010

        In fact, the occasional victory for the GOP cannot hide the fact that this country is fast heading into another era, not of two-party democracy, but a party-and-a-half system. And the GOP is the half a party- Larry Sabato

        by lordpet8 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:33:48 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Actually Mississippi is an interesting case (6+ / 0-)

        Mississippi is the only Deep South state legislature where the Democratic Party still has significant membership coming from heavily white, ultra-conservative districts.  With the exception of one State Senator from a super red district in Northern Alabama, the rest of the Deep South legislatures are divided totally on racial lines with Democrats coming from heavily black or black majority districts and Republicans taking the rest.

        South Carolina has a handful of Democrats (like Vincent Sheheen) in Republican leaning districts but none in districts that were won by Mitt Romney by 70% or more, as there are in Mississippi.

        The problem with Mississippi is that Democrats probably won't grow their ranks in conservative territory, unless Jim Hood ever decides to run for governor and brings more Democrats in on his coattails.

        But given that MS Republicans only have a narrow majority in the state legislature, whereas other Deep south states have huge Republican majorities, I'd at least put Mississippi above Alabama, Louisiana, and maybe Georgia.

    •  It'll be a while (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, pademocrat, MichaelNY

      But Virginia and Georgia seem to be the likeliest candidates.

      •  VA isn't deep south (7+ / 0-)

        Heck it's on its way to becoming like Maryland (as in formerly a southern state, but undergoes a cultural revolution).

        "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

        by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:50:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Virginia's Southside (5+ / 0-)

          could fit as part of the Deep South, but it's a rather small part of the state population wise.

          VA's big metro areas include Northern Virginia, which is probably best classified as part of the Northeast Corridor these days; Tidewater/Hampton Roads, which is its own animal, more southern than NOVA but more cosmopolitan than the traditional southern city; and Richmond, which is the most southern of the three (it was the Confederate capital, after all), but isn't interchangeable with, say, Birmingham.

          There's also the rural Tidewater (coastal, but not really Deep South); rural Piedmont (sort of border-southern); and the west/southwest (the state's bit of Appalachia.)

          37, MD-8 (MD-6 after 2012) resident, NOVA raised, Euro/Anglophile Democrat

          by Mike in MD on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:36:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  None of that is deep south (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            James Allen, Chachy, pademocrat, MichaelNY

            None of North Carolina is deep south either.

            23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

            by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:46:27 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'd say maybe the southeast, but that's pushing it (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              James Allen, Chachy, pademocrat
            •  None of North Carolina? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              While it isn't most of the state, the rural tobacco and cotton growing areas of North Carolina have always seemed deep southern to me, in terms of economy, social conditions, and politics; these were the Demosaur-turned-GOP voters that inflicted Jesse Helms on the country time and again.

              Such areas are of course heavily outvoted by the urban areas, many of which could pass for northern, and there's a lot of non-Deep Southern Piedmont and Appalachian territory there as well, but at least some areas of NC could reasonably pass for Deep South, though the state as a whole certainly can't.

              37, MD-8 (MD-6 after 2012) resident, NOVA raised, Euro/Anglophile Democrat

              by Mike in MD on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:59:19 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Generally (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY

                Some of the parts you speak of used-to-could be considered deep south, but the problem is that they've either changed culturally (Wilmington, Fayetteville, Elizabethtown) into northeastern retirement outposts (begging the question of whether or not South Carolina is still entirely deep south) or were never really deep south (Lumberton and that area) because of the heavily Native American cultural influence.

                23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

                by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:32:28 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Rural white areas of these states ARE Deep South (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY

                  Rural white Virginia and rural white NC most definitely are Deep South culturally.  They are just shrinking percentages of the states' populations, and of steadily diminishing influence in the states' politics.  But they are as Southern as anyplace, which is true of everywhere in the white rural South.

                  44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

                  by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:22:24 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Hold on a second (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    wwmiv

                    Would you then be claiming that West Virginia is Deep South? Because that would be really ahistorical.

                    Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                    by MichaelNY on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:37:44 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I'm borderline but think maybe yes (0+ / 0-)

                      I was thinking of the Old Confederacy when I typed that, and wasn't thinking of WV, but I'm not sure it's really that different.

                      44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

                      by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:26:10 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  It sure is (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        wwmiv, Chachy

                        Just because the whites there are now conservative can't make it part of the Deep South, given that they actually seceded from Virginia to support the Union. I don't think we should redefine "Deep South" to mean "conservative whites from Southern and boarder states who vote Republican."

                        Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                        by MichaelNY on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:33:11 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

    •  Maybe LA? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drhoosierdem, MichaelNY

      "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

      by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:48:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  NOLA is growing up again (4+ / 0-)

        Shreveport's bluing NW Louisiana, the Baton Rouge metro is bluing.  the only parts that are reddening are the SW bayous.

        "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

        by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:53:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  NOLA may be growing (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          but Orleans Parish is less than 8% of the state's population. It'll take a lot of time for that growth to become demographically meaningful.

          •  And is New Orleans' growth (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            really increasing beyond where it was before the last decade, or is it just making up for a temporary post-Katrina drop?

            37, MD-8 (MD-6 after 2012) resident, NOVA raised, Euro/Anglophile Democrat

            by Mike in MD on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:25:42 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No, it's still well behind where it was (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              pre-Katrina. And I would add that to the extent Lousiana's political hopes depend on an influx of white liberals re-populating New Orleans (an idea I've heard bandied about)... there's barely over 100,000 white people in the parish, and obviously not all of them are liberal, vs. 2.75 million in the state as a whole. That dog's not gonna hunt.

          •  Every bit helps. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            And if it's part of a larger mosaic, which I'm saying, it really helps.

            "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

            by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:16:59 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Deep South: (7+ / 0-)

      Let's all remember what the deep south is, because we seem to be forgetting:

      Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Louisiana.

      Parts of Texas and Florida are Deep South, but not the entire states so we can exclude those for the purposes of this question.

      Georgia's demographics are moving in our favor, but the VRA hinders our potential there. Even still, that's clearly the best bet.

      South Carolina's demographics are also moving in our favor, but more slowly and from a lower position. #2.

      Louisiana's an interesting case as mentioned by many here. I repeat their reasons, but I can't pick between it and Mississippi with the latter's demographic trend. Tied at #3.

      Alabama is hopeless. Give it up. The demographics are moving against us there, aren't they? Too white, too conservative, too hard. Won't happen for until party coalitions shift again.

      23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

      by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:05:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Why do I keep seeing this? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen, OGGoldy, pademocrat, Inoljt
        South Carolina's demographics are also moving in our favor, but more slowly and from a lower position. #2.
        South Carolina was the only state in the lower 48 where the white population grew faster than the black population in the 2000's. And their hispanic and other populations are smaller than they are in GA or NC.

        So how are demographics moving in our direction? Is there some sort of economic change I'm not aware of that is to our advantage? All I know about is that it's an increasingly popular retirement destination for conservative-leaning folks, which is hardly helpful to us (and possibly accounts for the relative growth of the white population).

        •  Because the "retirement" (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, MichaelNY

          Population growth that you seem to think of isn't as Republican as the rest of the state as a whole, moving the needle just slightly toward us.

          And that isn't just what matters. What also matters is the distribution of voters across the state, which seems to work more in our favor here than in other southern states.

          Demographics doesn't just mean "is the black population growing faster than the white population".

          23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

          by wwmiv on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:34:53 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  demographics (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY
            Demographics doesn't just mean "is the black population growing faster than the white population".
            Yes, that's why I also considered growth of hispanics and others, the economic profile of the state, and migration patterns in my comment.
            the "retirment" population growth that you seem to think of isn't as Republican as the rest of the state as a whole, moving the needle just slightly toward us.
            If a state votes 60-40 for republicans and and gains a bunch of people who vote 55-45 Republican, that isn't helpful to Dems. It allows Dems to improve their percentage of the vote, but causes them to lose by a greater absolute number of votes.

            On the other hand, if demographic distribution of the population is changing in a way that's helpful to us, that's an interesting point; please elaborate...

      •  basically Goldwater states minus AZ (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen, pademocrat, jncca, MichaelNY

        In fact, the occasional victory for the GOP cannot hide the fact that this country is fast heading into another era, not of two-party democracy, but a party-and-a-half system. And the GOP is the half a party- Larry Sabato

        by lordpet8 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:36:10 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Discounting Florida and Texas? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      drhoosierdem, pademocrat, MichaelNY

      Mississippi. GA is too gerrymandered, and we still hold quite a few of the demosaur seats in MS, at least vis-à-vis AL and GA.

      (-9.38, -7.49), Blood type "O", social anarchist, KY-01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy." — Stanisław Lem

      by Setsuna Mudo on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:40:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Definitely Georgia. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gabjoh, MichaelNY

      Gerrymandering isn't an issue because we aren't winning any legislatures in the region this decade anyway, barring a huge wave. Demographics are moving in an extremely favorable direction for us - whites are already below 59% of registered voters, which is down 1.3% just since last May.

      Beyond that, the picking's are really slim. Maybe I'd guess South Carolina, just because of the possibility that it might start turning in a North Carolina-type direction.

      I guess I'll go Mississippi for #3, just on the hope that southern white identity becomes more integrated into the mainstream over the next 10-20 years; MS starts from such a high base with it's black population that it wouldn't take that much to put it over the top.

      Louisiana #4 - same reason but less so.

      Alabama might be the most impenetrable state for us in the country.

      •  Beware of the Georgia SOS Numbers (0+ / 0-)

        The unknowns must, given the turnout statistics for this year compared with those collected for 2000-2010 by actually competent Secretary of State's, be overwhelmingly white.

        •  "White" plus "Other" in the numbers... (0+ / 0-)

          ...add up to 67% of all voters, and I assume you're saying the white vote was somewhere in the mid-60s.

          That sounds about right, but I wouldn't be surprised if "other" was less white than you think......but offset by the reality that Hispanics and Asians have poor turnout rates.

          44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

          by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:27:29 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  I would tell MS-StH (0+ / 0-)

      It is a difficult goal.

      Fortunately there are more favourable options in NH, PA, IA, WI, MI and VA.

  •  PA-LG (5+ / 0-)

    Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith becomes the second official candidate in the Dem primary for LG, after Harrisburg City Councilman Brad Koplinski.  The current LG also made the jump from County Commisioner, although he was from Bucks County, which has about 10x the population of Bradford (which is in NE PA), and he won a very crowded GOP primary by doing well in Philly and its suburbs.  

    •  A statewide D+ office in PA (0+ / 0-)

      This should be a good office for many Democrats in the state.

      I would like to see M Critz running. He can make the last Republican Gerrymander a campaign issue in the state.

      •  If Critz runs on the gerrymander he will lose (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

        That isn't a winning issue.

        20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
        politicohen.com
        Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
        UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.4.12, -4.92

        by jncca on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:06:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I mean not it (0+ / 0-)

          I mean his presence would put the issue over the table. The LG runs in the same ticket than the governor, and there are a lot more of issues that would have their time.

        •  For political science purposes (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gabjoh

          it would be very interesting to see what would happen if someone like Critz had say, $20 million to spend on a statewide race and campaigned specifically against gerrymandering.

          I'd bet that it wouldn't even come close to overcoming voters' existing partisan inclinations, which is why we haven't seen someone successfully do it yet.

          It would also be really interesting to see a candidate campaign specifically on the issue in a state while there was also a ballot initiative in the state that did the same thing and to compare the two margins/vote totals.

          •  All the time (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            WisJohn, MichaelNY, gabjoh

            I find myself wishing I could run controlled experiments politically...if I could rewind time, and just handpick different candidates, and see how the races would have turned out.  To adjust things like fundraising, voting records, special vs. general election, and so on.  As it is, we're left merely guessing how things could have gone. :(

        •  We really can't just give up... (4+ / 0-)

          On winning the fight for fair redistricting just because it's an obscure issue.

          Keeper of the DKE glossary. Priceless: worth a lot; not for sale.

          by SaoMagnifico on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:50:08 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Agreed, but I think what jncca was implying (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, gabjoh

            is that it's just not viable to wage a campaign over it at the individual candidate level. The solution involves ballot initiatives or state constitutional conventions or something along those lines. Critz wouldn't be able to make headway with the issue because at the end of the day, Republicans are still going to vote against him because he's a Democrat and they oppose Democratic positions regardless of what they think about gerrymandering. It wouldn't make any sense for him or any other partisan office holder to run against gerrymandering; they'd lose.

          •  I agree (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

            and in California, we passed it and it became a political issue.  But you can't win a run for office by running on fair redistricting.  People care about it enough to vote for it as a standalone issue, but they won't change their votes to vote for you if you're calling for it.

            20, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
            politicohen.com
            Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
            UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.4.12, -4.92

            by jncca on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:09:18 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Even as a standalone issue (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

              it doesn't always excite voters.  When the congressional map was put onto the ballot in Maryland last year, it passed by a 64-36 margin, with all but two counties in favor.

              Among the counties voting yes were GOP-leaning Allegany, Washington, and Frederick Counties, all of which switched from having Republican to Democratic House representation as a result of the new map.

              37, MD-8 (MD-6 after 2012) resident, NOVA raised, Euro/Anglophile Democrat

              by Mike in MD on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:25:51 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Cruz clings to Obama=Carter in desperate hope (11+ / 0-)

    "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

    by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:57:50 AM PST

  •  TX GOP wary of HRC running. (10+ / 0-)

    "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

    by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 08:58:24 AM PST

    •  Ah you beat me to it (4+ / 0-)

      She'll put alot of traditional red states in play or at least make them competitive.

      NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

      by BKGyptian89 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:06:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Lot of nonsense in that (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, Chachy, Stephen Wolf, NMLib

        She won't put a lot of traditional red states in play.  She'll have the same playing field as Obama, except she'll likely do clearly worse in Indiana and North Carolina, and she'll probably do better in Missouri and Arkansas although in the latter I doubt she can win anymore.

        She might do somewhat better in other Southern/border red states, but not enough to make them truly winnable.

        If she runs, a lot of people here are going to be struck by how fast she comes down to earth.  Her baseline will be clearly stronger than it was in 2008 both among primary and general election voters, and she'll very likely win.  But some of these poll numbers are pure fiction and won't come remotely close to translating to actual votes.

        44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

        by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:43:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I can say with certainty that Clinton (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          would not do worse in Indiana. She would over perform in Indiana, which would counteract any drop off in AA votes. Besides that specific constituency, which I still don't believe they wouldn't turn out in 2008, what are the other drop offs? If you could offer proof of your assertion, I would like to see it.

          •  *overperform in *southern* Indiana. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY
            •  I can say with certainty you are wrong (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              NMLib, MichaelNY

              She will not spend a dime or a single moment of time in Indiana, and therefore will not overperform one bit, the state defaulting to its natural treatment of Democratic Presidential nominees relative to the rest of the country.

              44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

              by DCCyclone on Sat Feb 23, 2013 at 09:33:36 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  How do you know what Clinton will do? (0+ / 0-)

                Honestly, please I want to know.

                •  I think he's basing that (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  DCCyclone

                  on her previous strategy and who her advisors have tended to be.

                  Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                  by MichaelNY on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 12:41:23 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That, and more (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    Not just her strategy, but what all Democrats do.

                    They all look at what states are winnable, what's needed to win, what could be winnable with extra effort that could put pressure on the opposition and whether the resources are there to compete.  That last category is very iffy, ultimately campaigns don't invest if they're not playing to win.  Some field offices might be put into place like OFA did, but then OFA put field offices in places nowhere near anything competitive so that didn't mean much.

                    For all the talk of OFA expanding the map, they ended up nixing Arizona last year, never really invested in Alaska in '08, and ignored altogether some states Democratic fans excitedly talked about.

                    Regarding Hillary, she's no different from anyone else running for President.  There is a template.  They all follow it.  And what a campaign decides is competitive is a function of polling, fundamentals regarding the candidates and the national conditions, and the amount of money available.  The reality is there are scarce resources, even in an era of billion-dollar campaigns, and much of what partisan fans persuade themselves to believe is "competitive" is no such thing.

                    I'm actually astonished how many people, even some level-headed analysts and commentators who don't have a dog in the hunt, are taking seriously these polls showing Hillary competitive in red states.  It's obvious they are a mirage.  Hillary's people certainly aren't gaming out except for fun what states could be competitive in 2016, but when push comes to shove, they're not expecting to find themselves making any effort in the likes of Indiana or Texas.  Georgia is a possibility only because of demographics, but the reality of turnout disparities is such that it's unlikely as a target.

                    Finally, my comment was part snark, I'm no more "certain" than ndrwmls......but I'm definitely no less certain, either.

                    44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

                    by DCCyclone on Sun Feb 24, 2013 at 06:15:18 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

        •  what? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          worse in North Carolina!!!??? When I said puttin red state in play/competitive Im talking about the ones in the South. And North Carolina was competitive always till election day. Obama lost it by 2 points cause he lost the white vote by 2-3 pointss compared to '08, which was enough for him to lose the state. Plus there was some Dem fatigue cause of internal scandals in the state party, plus Perdue's unpopularity didn't help our case there. Carolina is a swing state now anyways, no longer red.

          My overall comment was that she'll be competive in some of those red states in the South like Kentucky, Georgia, Louisiana, and Missouri, and maybe Texas. She will for sure do much better than Obama did in those states. But I didn't say she was going to win them. Maybe Missouri, and probably Georgia, but I did not say she will them. I just said she'll be competitive or at least do better than Obama.

          NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

          by BKGyptian89 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:23:27 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Depending on who runs (0+ / 0-)

            and the overall political climate, I give her chances in the following states Obama didn't win in 2012:

            Arkansas, for obvious reasons (I'd start with the state at Lean-R)
            North Carolina, because it's light red to purple now (Also Lean-R)
            Missouri, because it neighbors Arkansas and has some racist voters who might be more apt to pull the lever for a white woman than a black man, plus Obama almost won it in 2008 (Lean/Likely R)
            Georgia, because of demographic changes (Lean/Likely R)

            Based on Arizona results this year, I can't give her a chance there. I know it's a historically racist, Jim Crow state with a sordid past, but the main target of racism there now is Latinos, and that's not going to change with Clinton running instead of Obama, nor will their population of eligible voters increase nearly enough to countervail all the anti-Latino racists in the state.

            Texas? Forget it. Safe R. The only way she comes close is if it's a tremendous rout, and if that happens, the Democrats would probably win back the House with a majority of at least 40 and probably gain a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate.

            Kentucky? I don't see it. Barring strong evidence to the contrary after the primaries are over, I'd rate it Safe R. It's an R+13 state that has big coal-mining regions. The only way Clinton has a chance to win in Kentucky and West Virginia is if she panders on coal completely, and if she does that, she won't win the Democratic primary.

            And I won't see she couldn't. In the past, I used to think she'd say anything she thought would help her win. I hope I either was wrong in my appraisal of her through 2008, or that she has changed, but I still would rather vote for someone who didn't vote for aggression against Iraq. I don't forgive, and I don't forget.

            Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

            by MichaelNY on Sat Feb 23, 2013 at 12:18:17 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Let's put it this way...... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            NMLib, MichaelNY

            Hillary Clinton won't put a single dime into any but perhaps one of those states, "those" being the ones you identified, KY/GA/LA/MO/TX.  Missouri is the possible exception of those.

            That's the thing to keep in mind, she's not going to even try to win anything Obama didn't win unless there is natural swing broadly toward Democrats--having nothing to do with her--from demographic shift or a wave election or some such thing.

            44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

            by DCCyclone on Sat Feb 23, 2013 at 09:32:09 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Sounds like serious concern-trolling (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      However, it's nearly four years before the next presidential election, so I don't think Hillary is going to win TX in the general election if she's the Democratic presidential nominee, although she could make it close enough to force Republicans to spend more money and resources in Texas than they would like to.

      I LOVE it when Republicans are concern-trolling!

      Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

      by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:13:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I read the general discussion from yesterday (6+ / 0-)

      The one that got dangerously close to the tired old arguments from the 2008 primary. My own view is that while her favorables are likely to decline should she choose to run they start from such a high place that the possibility remains for making unlikely states competitive.

      "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

      by conspiracy on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:14:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Perhaps someone caught wind... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lordpet8, itskevin, MichaelNY

      Of a private poll confirming what PPP recently showed?

    •  If Hillary Clinton actually puts Texas in play (7+ / 0-)

      The real problem for Republicans won't be that Texas is in play, it will be that she is winning nationally by double digits, which is what it would take for Texas to be competitive in 2016.  Anyone talking about Texas being in play in 2016 is assuming a national Dem blowout, unless people expect Texas' PVI to suddenly go from R+10 to something that would be competitive in a contested election.

      •  Bingo, which is why I don't put any stock in these (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        "Hillary Clinton could be competitive in Texas" conclusions from these polls.

        Even being generous and say Texas jumped to R+5 from R+10 then Clinton still has to be winning by 10 to win the state. It's just not going to happen.

      •  She'll lose Texas by double-digits (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        She won't be competitive there, these early poll numbers are a mirage.

        But she'll win everything Obama won in 2012, although Virginia could be dicier and so might Colorado.  But she'll possibly put Missouri into play, and she'll run closer in some other red states but still lose.

        44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

        by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:46:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The most interesting dynamic of all these polls (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WisJohn, JBraden, MichaelNY

      showing Clinton running so strongly are the ways it will psychologically influence the invisible primary. I absolutely think her numbers are inflated thanks to her role at State, among other things. (Though I also absolutely think she's our strongest possible candidate by far - after two terms of Obama, she could actually present as an alternative to him, since she a) is a white woman, and b) was actually his chief rival in 2008, while simultaneously supporting his popular policies.)

      But will these inflated numbers convince her to run (if that is in doubt)? Will they convince other Dems to back off? Will it scare off strong republican candidates like Jeb Bush?

      •  You really think that about State? (0+ / 0-)

        I would think that her role as Sec of State has done nothing to help her popularity/electability... other than the significant help of keeping her in the public eye for four years.

        My takeaway from these polls is that there have always been a lot of racist-ish people who agree with the Dem party in general about economic and national security issues.

        We've seen GA and TX polls.  A WV one would be interesting.

        Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

        by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:29:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Secretaries of State (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          are always popular because they eschew the debasements of political debate while representating the nation as a whole on the international stage, look important meeting world leaders, etc. It is a de-partisanizing role. But the big numbers for Clinton right now will come down when she returns to the political fray and alienates all those conservative whites in places like TX and GA who are presumably propping up her support at the moment.

          Agree on WV. I am not ruling out the possibility that she actually could be competitive there, as well as Arkansas and possibly Missouri.

          •  Maybe Arkansas and Missouri (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jncca, MichaelNY, Chachy

            but I don't think we'll be competitive in West Virginia, or Kentucky for that matter, solely because no modern Democratic party nominee is going to be opposed to Cap and Trade or support strip mining.

            We might see polls today, nearly 4 years out, that showed Clinton competitive in those two states, but after several months of campaigning, those voters would be reminded that the national Democratic party is severely out of sync with them on issues like coal.

            I do wish PPP would poll West Virginia next time though. All we've seen recently are those right wing pollsters only testing our weakest candidate when they clearly have an ulterior agenda.

  •  David Rivera's phony Dem candidate to be charged (7+ / 0-)

    "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

    by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:11:54 AM PST

    •  Does Rivera skate on all of this? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, MichaelNY

      The poor sap they sucked in being the fall guy?  The key seems to be to find Alliegro as she'd be the tie between this sucker and Rivera.  

      But I'm betting Sternad will take the fall completely by himself here.  He'll be paid off (and/or threatened) to do so because Rivera can be easily tied to Rubio given the lived together and co-owned a house together while in state-level politics.  So the GOP power players will keep Rivera clean to keep Rubio clean.  

      Keystone XL Pipeline - Canada gets the money, Asia gets the oil, America gets the toxic refinery pollution and potential for a pipeline leak ecological disaster.

      by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:23:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  NV-Muni: I went to a house party last night... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, MichaelNY, Gygaxian

    And witnessed our Mayor chatting with constituents for over 2 hours on the state of the city. It was very fascinating. Even in the second largest city in the state, there's such a "small town feel" as so many in power seem so accessible.

    Nevada is such a political "machine state", yet it's pretty easy to get into the system. It's something else that makes the politics here so weird/special.

    •  IL politicians are downright inaccessible (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, Gygaxian, MichaelNY

      Seriously, has any "ordinary person" ever met Mike Madigan and Rahm Emanuel in person? Same goes with Aaron Schock. It's as if politicians here in Illinois only want to be seen with other politicians.

      Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

      by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:33:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I experienced much of the same in California. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DownstateDemocrat, MichaelNY

        Especially since California is so HUGE, it's just logistically difficult for many higher level pol's to cover the entirety of their turf. Yet even with that being said, some don't even try. Many top Dems didn't want to step foot in Orange County, and many top GOPers didn't same to step foot in San Francisco.

        That's why I experienced such a culture shock during my first 18 months in Nevada. Even Harry Reid himself isn't too far out of reach.

        •  I did get a chance to know (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          James Allen, MichaelNY

          my local candidates at a personal level (state senator, assemblywoman, city council folks and mayor) but yes generally too many other politicos unless I was at the state convention.

          I do hope the Dems will want step into OC now that we have Quirk-Silva.

          In fact, the occasional victory for the GOP cannot hide the fact that this country is fast heading into another era, not of two-party democracy, but a party-and-a-half system. And the GOP is the half a party- Larry Sabato

          by lordpet8 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:43:39 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  ugh that should say (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            James Allen, MichaelNY

            But, yes I generally didn't see too many other politicos

            In fact, the occasional victory for the GOP cannot hide the fact that this country is fast heading into another era, not of two-party democracy, but a party-and-a-half system. And the GOP is the half a party- Larry Sabato

            by lordpet8 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:49:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  I received quite the culture shock... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          ...blogging about Wisconsin politics, and I've never actually been to Wisconsin! As a matter of fact, the Wisconsin state Democratic party chairman, Mike Tate, follows me on Twitter!

          Quite frankly, it's refreshing to hear about a state where "the activists", and not "the machine", run the Democratic Party. I've never able to get in touch with an elected Democratic official from Wisconsin (yet), although I talk to several Democratic activists/bloggers online on a regular basis.

          Wisconsin seems to be a state that is highly-polarized, even in regards to "ordinary people" being able to access political figures. There are some Republicans in Wisconsin who don't want to be seen in the same room with their own activists, whereas even some of the Democratic lobbyists in Wisconsin are accessible and transparent!

          Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

          by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:50:25 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Dems have far more reason to set foot in OC (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          WisJohn, MichaelNY

          than Republicans do in SF.

      •  Are the Little Egypt legislators more likely to be (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JGibson, MichaelNY

        accessible? Forby, Phelps, John Bradley, Jerry Costello II? They seem like they need to be in order to keep getting elected as Democrats in this increasingly Republican area. My aunt lives in Pope County. Very conservative area.

        Another question for you. Why is there a Republican,      Michael P. McAuliffe, from Chicago? House district 20. How does he get elected?

        Farm boy, 20, who hit the city to go to college, WI-03 (home, voting), WI-02 (college), -7.00, -3.13, Coya shouldn't have been sent home.

        by WisJohn on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:29:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'll try to answer your two questions (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, JGibson, GloFish, MichaelNY

          The Democratic legislators from Little Egypt are quite conservative and have built up long constituent service records, and, in the cases of Costello II and Phelps, have had older relatives (in Costello II's case, his dad, and in Phelps's case, his uncle) get elected to Congress from that region of Illinois in the past. They'd have to be more accessible than your typical Democratic politician (and have conservative voting records as well) to get elected continuously as Democrats.

          Also, in regards to IL-HD-20 having a Republican state representative despite including part of Chicago, here's a map of it (it's the western part of IL-SD-10). That district appears to extend from what few precincts of Chicago have been known to vote Republican on a regular basis all the way to what appears to be the east side of Des Plaines. It was probably drawn as a "City of Chicago Republican Vote-Sink" as a result of the Madiganmander.

          Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

          by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:44:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Have to admit (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Berliozian, Stephen Wolf, MichaelNY

        I'm amused at the notion of sharing a beer at a house party with Mike Madigan.

        Get the Daily Kos Elections Digest in your inbox every weekday. Sign up here.

        by David Nir on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:18:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Not that I actually met the Republicans... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, MichaelNY

      But I feel that the Utah Democrats are far more accessible (if much smaller in number) than the Utah Republicans. They're always ready to talk on the phone or Facebook, and they seem to be much more relaxed than the Republicans. The one Republican I actually managed to talk to (my state Rep Ken Ivory) had a conversation with me over the phone, but basically blew my concerns about straight-ticket voting (the issue I called him about) off.

      The Utah Dems have more of a small-town feel, which is hilarious because their only base of support is the largest city (and the capital) of the state.

      Leftist Mormon in Utah, Born in Washington State, live in UT-04 (Matheson).

      by Gygaxian on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:23:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  CA St. Sen: Michael Rubio resigning (6+ / 0-)

    https://twitter.com/...

    Dem State Senator Michael Rubio will be resigning to "direct governmental affairs for Chevron Corporation".  Rubio was planning to run for CA-21 in 2012 but dropped out due to his new child being born with Down Syndrome.  

    His seat was up in 2014 and a special election will be held presumably under the pre-redistricting lines.  I can't find the partisan stats for the old Senate District 16 but Rubio won the open seat 61%-39% in 2010.

    23, male, CA-18 (home and voting there), LA-01 (college).

    by Jeff Singer on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:21:04 AM PST

  •  WI-SC (0+ / 0-)

    I highly doubt that Ed Fallone can actually defeat Patience Roggensack (Wisconsin has only voted out an incumbent state supreme court justice twice in history, and a politically toxic justice got re-elected narrowly two years ago), however, that hasn't stopped progressive activists Sachi and Laura Komai, who own a small gift shop in Madison, from making these witty anti-Roggensack campaign buttons!

    Friend of the Wisconsin Uprising from East Central Illinois! IL-15

    by DownstateDemocrat on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:20:04 AM PST

  •  Ad running on some political websites (15+ / 0-)

    This is what Sen. Rubio has to look forward to in the GOP primaries if he runs for president.  I think Republican leadership have really underestimated just how strongly their base voters are against any path to citizenship.

    •  I've been seeing it too. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, MichaelNY

      "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

      by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 11:50:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  This is why I have a hard time seeing Rubio (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, MichaelNY

      supporting the bill.

      My worry is that if Rubio doesnt support it, that dooms the chances of a comprehensive bill. Hopefully, not. There seem to be other GOP senators, like Flake, McCain, who have less to lose by supporting the bill.

      The other possibility. Rubio doesnt want to run for president and he votes for the bill, which would probably bolster his support in FL and make for an easy re-election in 2016.

      •  A tiny bit of immigration moderation (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jj32, LordMike, MichaelNY, DCCyclone

        could make Rubio a Senator for life.  Staying with the wingers on immigration though could lead to him trying to peaking too soon and running and losing in 2016.

        This is the issue that will either make him important for the next 30 years, or the one that will make him a trivia question in five years.

        Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

        by tommypaine on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:37:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Well, he's already in knee deep... (4+ / 0-)

        If he bails now, it will be even worse for him, since he won't have an actual bill to defend against the "amnesty" charge.  The only way out for him is through.

        GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

        by LordMike on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:45:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  though wouldn't a bill like that be DOA (0+ / 0-)

        in the house?

        In fact, the occasional victory for the GOP cannot hide the fact that this country is fast heading into another era, not of two-party democracy, but a party-and-a-half system. And the GOP is the half a party- Larry Sabato

        by lordpet8 on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 02:08:28 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think that's unclear (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jj32, JGibson

          And a big wildcard is that some Christian Right folks have come out in support of some kind of amnesty, on humanitarian bases taken right out of the Bible ("Remember, you were a stranger in a strange land" and all that other stuff that was written with reference to the situation of Jews but can be interpreted broadly, and properly, as a call for decent and generous treatment of refugees, migrants, and foreigners, generally).

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 06:19:39 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  if comprehensive immigration passes this (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, tommypaine, MichaelNY

      year, i think rubio could still be okay. he would be in a position similar to that of romney in 2010. The whole rationale for Romney's candidacy in 2008 - the fact that he had passed a conservative healthcare bill as governor of MA and thus could take healthcare off the table as an issue - fell through when Obamacare was passed. And yet Romney still won the nomination because he was next in line and because all the not-romney's self-imploded. The fact that Rubio's signature accomplishment (if it does happen) - an immigration bill - would be considered a net negative would make his path more difficult, but it wouldn't necessarily doom him. That being said, i personally think the odds are small that comprehensive immigration is passed in this congress.

      •  Interesting analogy to Romney (5+ / 0-)

        I was so certain Romney was DOA in the 2012 GOP primaries because of Romneycare, but as his opponents self-destructed one after another (Perry, Bachmann, Cain, Gingrich, Santorum) I realized that you can't beat somebody with nobody.  Had someone like Mitch Daniels or John Thune entered the race, I'm sure Romney would have lost to them.

        •  This is my sentiment too (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, JBraden

          maybe not on the particulars of Daniels or Thune, but if there had been a credible "electable" alternative. None of the flavors of the week demonstrated that they were viable candidates to any extent which is why they'd surge and then crater once everyone could see their obvious flaws.

          Also I think if Rick Perry hadn't been a total dumbass he'd have won the nomination and become the redefinition of George McGovern today, or at least I'd like to hope. After all, it's not like he's always run horrible campaigns, but he did when it mattered most.

        •  I've recently thought a different reason... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, Stephen Wolf

          ...for RomneyCare not hurting him was at play.

          It was simply that to a silent majority of GOP voters, the issue was stale.  RomneyCare passed in 2006 and conservatives and Republicans did not complain.  Then he ran for President in 2008, even as a hard-right conservative, and still conservatives and Republicans did not complain.  But then ObamaCare happened and looked a lot like RomneyCare, and conservatives complained...but the loudest voices proved to be less representative of the party than they appeared.  It's not that they didn't care, it's that it was simply hard to get worked up over something that they realized didn't bother them earlier, even if only because they weren't paying close attention.

          Rubio and immigration would be a little different, because he's getting and will keep getting a lot of flack in real time by conservatives really paying attention.  But I still think he's more helped than hurt, because he needs immigration reform to preserve his argument for his candidacy, and his best bet is to gamble that other things will overtake immigration as GOP voter priorities over 3 years' time.

          44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

          by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:58:11 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  "Amnesty for Illegal"? (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Skaje, askew, James Allen, David Nir, MichaelNY

      that doesn't even make sense

    •  I increasingly think the opposite (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, Chachy

      Come spring/summer/fall 2015, I can easily see immigration have dissipated as a priority issue for the GOP base, especially if their own party capitulated 2 years earlier anyway.

      Politics is multidimensional, everyone has his warts, and it's folly to assume Rubio on immigration would be a bigger wart than, say, Jindal and McDonnell on sales taxes, and other warts on other guys.  What the crazy GOP voters decide are their top priorities is an open question.  And honestly, it's easy to picture immigration falling down the list, since it's a fairly isolated issue and unrelated to other things they've always focused on more.

      Meanwhile, in contrast, if Rubio doesn't help pass comprehensive reform with, yes, "amnesty," then he loses a primary argument for his candidacy.  That, too, hurts with GOP voters, since who know if he has anything else to distinguish himself from his GOP rivals.  His argument is he's Hispanic and can win Hispanic and perhaps other votes that other Republicans can't win in November, but need these days.  If he fails to support "amnesty," after his own party willingly made comprehensive reform a priority and he willingly threw himself into the middle of the legislation, then he gets crushed with Hispanics the same as Romney, and everyone knows it going into Iowa.

      44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

      by DCCyclone on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 09:52:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  March 15 is the CA specials (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, lordpet8

    to replace McLeod and Vargas.  So we'll be one above a supermajority real soon.

    "Each player must accept the cards life deals him or her: but once they are in hand, he or she alone must decide how to play the cards in order to win the game." -Voltaire

    by KingofSpades on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:14:20 PM PST

    •  maybe (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lordpet8

      32 is going to a runoff in May

      40 could be won by Hueso in March, unless random D votes drift away from him and he barely misses a majority in a 4 candidate (2D/2R) field

      The Republican Party isn't a party of small government, it's a party of a government for the few. @bhindepmo

      by RBH on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:20:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Field: CA likes Brown, Supermajority (15+ / 0-)

    http://media.sacbee.com/...

    The Field Poll shows a big upswing for Gov. Jerry Brown.  His approval is 57%-31%, up from October's 46%-37%.  These are easily the best numbers Brown has seen during his term.  In fact, they're the best he's seen since October 1977.  

    Californians also like the legislative supermajority 55%-39%.  

    23, male, CA-18 (home and voting there), LA-01 (college).

    by Jeff Singer on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 12:20:34 PM PST

  •  Just FYI, the MASSinc table shd be read vertically (0+ / 0-)

    eg,
    "80 percent of self-identified Democrats are actually registered as such" ->
    "80 percent of registered Democrats actually self-identify as such".

    The columns sum to ~100%; the rows do not.

  •  question about banning fracking (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, MichaelNY

    is it possible to do a nationwide ban on fracking? If so which committee would it go through? My guess is the judiciary but maybe commerce also. Another thing I wonder is if it would get a court challenge.

    RRH expat (known as AquarianLeft). Also known as freepcrusher on leip atlas forum

    by demographicarmageddon on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 01:28:14 PM PST

  •  IL-02 Mailer (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, James Allen, JGibson

    My understanding is that Hutchinson's name will still be on the ballot.  If you're Halvorson, you want to divide up Kelly's potential supporters as much as possible.

  •  Britain loses its AAA rating from Moody's (8+ / 0-)

    Politically, this seems like a huge loss for Osborne and Cameron.

    The double and possibly triple dip recession was bad enough, but at least, through that they could make some argument they were improving Britain's debt situation. Even that thin argument is probably gone now.

    link.

    •  Bond markets are going to shrug it off (5+ / 0-)

      the same way they did here (in fact our interest rates plunged while S&P was downgrading).

      I really don't understand why the Tories have been obsessed with austerity the way Republicans here are. It makes sense for Republicans, being the out of power party, to want to cripple the economy since it helps them electorally like in 2010, but for the British Conservatives? Aside from just sticking it to the poor it seems incredibly self defeating from their ideological perspective and it isn't as if they're being forced to do it the way Spain's right wing party is.

      •  Agreed (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, MichaelNY, MetroGnome

        I was going to add, I doubt there are any actually negative consequences, as far as the bond markets are concerned.

        But as the BI article points out, it's more bad economy news for a country that has seen a lot of it, moreso than the US.

        Especially since, as you point out, the Tories have made debt reduction their signature issue.

        But I agree, I dont know what the obsession with it is. Even within their coalition, I cant imagine there is that pressure do this, can there? I doubt Lib Dem members are thrilled with austerity.

      •  Because they are true believers... (9+ / 0-)

        ...and actually believe that it will lead to prosperity.  They were honestly shocked to see their economic output drop as a result of these measures.  

        The next elections can't come soon enough.

        GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

        by LordMike on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:10:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I guess, I just have a very hard time believing (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, MichaelNY

          that people with that much power on the right in a major developed country are that stupid. I get it that their supporters might be, or that their talking points might spout off that kind of expansionary austerity* bullshit, but just look at the Republicans here and they know damn well what they're doing. They push austerity because it hurts Democrats when we're in control, while when they're in the majority like in 2001 they're gushing about how we need expansionary policies that just so happen to be their preferred tax policies.

          *Yes, austerity can be expansionary when you have accommodating monetary policy, but that doesn't apply here.

          •  Yes, they do believe it... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Inoljt, MetroGnome

            Look at all those Ron Paul types who preach "austrian" economics.  They really do believe that stuff, even the richie rich folks who should know better.

            GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

            by LordMike on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 03:35:36 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Cameron is what would happen if David Brooks (8+ / 0-)

            Got his wish. Cameron runs on insider-conventional wisdom. He takes the Centrist-Concern trolling seriously and attempts to govern based on it. All of the smart people tell him austerity is neccisary, and it goes with his noblesse oblige instincts about shared sacrifice, so he does it. He really does not understand it. This is the problem - he has no overarching theme - he just panders alternatingly to the left and right. He pisses off the Left with Austerity so he offers them softening of crime laws. This pisses off the Right by releasing brown people so he all but shuts down non-EU immigration. This annoys his cosmopolitan supporters so he gives them Gay Marriage. This pisses off the Right so he offers them an EU referendum.

            In the end he has a broken economy, and a larger number of immigrants than ever before, a furious business community(angry over visa restrictions on skilled workers) and a left that still thinks he is heartless.

  •  So Utah's Lt Gov Greg Bell (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, MichaelNY

    is currently under investigation by the Feds for abuse of power, and our state AG is still under the spotlight for his own scandal. http://www.sltrib.com/...

    Swallow resigning is likely (and I think imminent), while Greg Bell's resignation is unlikely (for now), but if both or either happens, it'll be interesting to see who replaces them. Will Herbert chose two more career politicians from the state legislature, or will he chose outsiders? If he chooses a legislator (and in fact a legislator is the new state auditor; our auditor was known for pass anti-open records legislation), then who will he choose? It's not like he'll open up a seat to the Democrats. And if he chooses a youngin for Lt Gov, it could be a signal that he's not interested in running for a second full term.

    Leftist Mormon in Utah, Born in Washington State, live in UT-04 (Matheson).

    by Gygaxian on Fri Feb 22, 2013 at 10:00:54 PM PST

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