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Comment Preferences

  •  Probably all the Senate races (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BMScott, bythesea

    But, Georgia, Kentucky, Alaska, Louisiana, Maine, and Arkansas are of particular interest.

    KOS: "Mocking partisans focusing on elections? Even less reason to be on Daily Kos."

    by fcvaguy on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 09:12:37 PM PDT

  •  It turns out I'll vote in the new UT-Dem Chair (10+ / 0-)

    As I am a delegate to the state convention and the current chair Jim Dabakis has resigned (for health reasons). So I'm interested in that. And a couple of Salt Lake County races.

    I'm also interested in AZ-Gov and AZ-Leg, IA-Sen and IA-01, NM-GOV, ME-Gov, KY-Sen, and a few others I can't recall at the moment.

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

    by Gygaxian on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 09:21:36 PM PDT

    •  Who are the likely candidates for party chair? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gabjoh

      Is there a sense of who's interested in taking the job? And if so, who do you think will do the best job of it?

      •  I'm not sure (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Taget

        At this point, the convention is a month away, and nobody has announced yet. Obviously Vice-Chair and Acting Chair Josie Valdez is a possibility though so far she's said that she's not interested.

        There's of course a ironic hipster-esque run from Jeff Bell, the founder of the ultra-progressive podcast The Left Show (which is more popular outside Utah than in, though it has a following in Utah progressive circles). I don't think Bell is being serious, but if he is, then he's not actually the worst choice, as he's worked on several campaigns, and gotten a couple of legislators elected. He's got a temper though, and doesn't suffer fools (or Republicans) lightly.

        There's also Rob Miller, a long-time Utah Dem insider. I don't know much about him, but he's been involved in a bunch of campaigns, is on the state central committee, has a lot of contacts, and runs a popular blog.

        Other than that, I have no idea who might run. Dabakis was the heart and soul of the party for three years, and he was only challenged by complete fringe types (as in, actual socialists).

        I don't know who would be best, but my criteria is that a party chair should be a good voice for Dems across Utah, that they should be a good fundraiser (which Dabakis was), that they can coordinate with other party officials to recruit strong candidates, and that they can plan around sudden problems.

        I don't know enough about any of the current possibilities for chair to make an informed decision. I'm holding out for state rep. Brian King, a progressive Mormon who happens to be an excellent fundraiser and nice guy (though he's willing to take on Republicans when needed).

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

        by Gygaxian on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:30:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Wow, you're a delegate? (0+ / 0-)

      How did you get that position?

      •  I showed up at the caucus. (0+ / 0-)

        Seriously though, my former LDS bishop, his wife, and an old married couple in my local congregation were at the Democratic caucus, and asked me if I wanted to be a delegate and I said yes, so they convinced the four other people in the precinct to elect me as delegate and precinct chair. Weirdly enough, they were fine with it when I pointed out I'd have to leave a week after the state convention for my LDS mission. Apparently the vice-chair will take over after that.

        Though apparently I may or may not be able to elect the new Party Chair; I've been getting conflicting information. Either way, I'll be casting a vote to nominate county and statewide candidates this year.

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

        by Gygaxian on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:24:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  MA Senate - 5th Middlesex (7+ / 0-)

    Not because it's particularly competitive but because this is the third special election resulting from John Kerry's nomination as SoS.  This is Katherine Clark's seat, which became vacant when she took Ed Markey's house seat, which became vacant when he took over in the Senate.  Our nominee in this 59% Obama district is State Rep. Jason Lewis, which means there could actually be a good chance of a fourth special election assuming they don't push it off to the general.  

    •  I would not be so sure (0+ / 0-)

      Yes, it's about D+8 district. Even more - Republican candidate, Monica Medeiros, despite being local Alderwoman, is very conservative by Massachusetts standards - both on economy and social issues. Nevertheless - with turnout like recently in California a very unpleasant for Democrats upset can't be ruled out...

      •  Dems have done well in holding their open seats (0+ / 0-)

        in New England in 2013 and 2014.  Only lost one, in NH, which are tiny as heck.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:11:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They also held a Nashua seat (0+ / 0-)

          in a contest between an ex-State Rep. (the Republican) and a political neophyte (the Democrat).

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:15:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I hope so (0+ / 0-)

          I could even agree on very moderate "Massachusetts Republican" (in extreme case), but have absolutely no desire to see seat like this won by someone like Medeiros..

          •  Yeah, it would be out of character in this SD. (0+ / 0-)

            How right-wing is she?

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:18:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You can listen to her podcast (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KingofSpades

              on Red Mass Group. Surely pro-life, anti-SSM, anti-ACA, conservative on taxes (that's at least, understandable). One plus - despite her being well-known, she once lost Republican prmary for legislature, so, probably - not so popular or highly controversial

        •  Sadly, not quite (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Taget

          Remember this?

          That being said, I'm not concerned about that seat in Massachusetts, since Clark didn't underperform Obama at all in the MA-05 special election.

          (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

          by ProudNewEnglander on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:10:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  The Democrat is from Winchester (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Taget

      a locally Republican town (light blue federally, though I think Scott Brown won it in 2012).  Considering the territoriality of New England, being from Winchester is a plus here.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:21:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  MA House -04th Hampden (0+ / 0-)

      The race for the state senate seat is interesting, but there is a state house race the same day that is calling my interest even more.

      MA-HD-04 Hampden was open by a Republican and is D+1 according to the Obama 2012 results.

      It would be possible to win the seat?

      •  Yes, but (0+ / 0-)

        Republicans have better candidate there (IMHO) and Democratic candidate supported Brown in 2012, so he must be at least somewhat conservative-leaning..

        Link

        •  The Dem has an eclectic career: (0+ / 0-)

          http://www.velisforstaterepresentative.com/...

          This district is in the only red area of West MA, it looks like.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:54:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  With a PVI of D+1 (approximately) (0+ / 0-)

            I would not call the district a red area, but is obviously more  Republican than the average of the state.

            It seems a decent candidate for the blue team and the Democratic Party has experience winning this kind of seats and worse seats. Good luck for him.

        •  what would make the Republican candidate better? (0+ / 0-)

          I like not it, but surely this district voted for S Brown with decent margins. And this would not be a big problem for his potential voters.

          An open seat with D+1 PVI seems a good opportunity for a gain. At least to try. We must take into account that the Democratic Party has 4 seats in EVEN or R+ territory in the state senate and has 16 seats in EVEN or R+ territory in the state house.

          This seat seems winnable to me.

          •  at same time (0+ / 0-)

            The Republicans have 2 seats in D+ territory in the state senate, and 5 seats in D+ territory in the state house. MA-HD-04 Hampdem is just one of these 5.

          •  Republican candidate is well-known (0+ / 0-)

            (and, at first look - respected) local official

            •  The 4th Hampden in Westfield (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              abgin

              The Republican has only been a city councilor since January. He was just elected last November.  He's also been caught lying about the Democrat already.  The Dem has a lot of crossover appeal.  His uncle, a GOP, used to hold the seat.

              Without these conditions, I believe it might be near impossible for D's the win.  In fact, I would have given the Dem the edge, but for last minute push by GOP.

              I've been writing about this race for a while, if anybody is interested.

              http://www.wmasspi.com/...

              "How do you have patience for people who claim they love America, but clearly can't stand Americans"-Annette Benning as Sydney Ellen Wade in the American President

              by Mski011 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:56:02 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Thanks! (0+ / 0-)

                But republican is a local official, Democrat - not. So i was generally correct here.

                •  before to read you about this race (0+ / 0-)

                  I would have bet that you would be happy with this type of Democratic candidate. But you seems so cold toward him.

                  •  Well, in such districts (0+ / 0-)

                    i really prefer moderate (and even slightly conservative) Democrats. But, as someone has said: he seems to be an eclectic candidate - at least that was my feelings after visiting  his web-site (i am mostly Internet-based now). Republican candidate seemed to be more solid and not especially right-wing - in this swingy district that's fine with me as well...  Especially because  Democrats will not lose anything  even if they don't win it tomorrow - it was represented by Republican (Humason) before.

                    P.S. I will be happy to be wrong this time.

                    •  eclectic (0+ / 0-)

                      not convinced

                      •  Agree - pure impression (0+ / 0-)

                        But, as i said - this is not a district which frightens me. Even in case of Republican victory. Both because it will be only "Hold" (not "Gain") and because Republican in this race is, surely, not Tom Cruz-like.

                        Let's wait a little - we will know result in less then a day

                        •  they have other gains (0+ / 0-)

                          and there are not many pick-up opportunities in D+ territory

                          this is nothing like Kentucky (R+13)

                          to fight not this kind of seats is dammaging

                          •  I didn't say (0+ / 0-)

                            "don't fight!" On the contrary - i am for fighting whenever possible (even in conservative Southern districts, but in THAT case - with rather "conservative" candidates). I said that in this district any result will be more or less acceptable to me. If Democrat wins - excellent. If Republicans will hold it - well, at least this will be with more or less reasonable Republican (i listened to his podcast yesterday - usual lines of attack, but nothing TOO bad)

              •  I think this is a good candidate for the blue team (0+ / 0-)

                Interesting to read more about the race. I have been reading about both candidates before and I see not a situtation for the blue team.

  •  MI-08 (4+ / 0-)

    Just a rehash for the weekend of the moving parts on the chessboard with the annoucement of the retirement of Republican congressman Mike Rogers in Michigan's 8th:

    Washington — The sudden retirement announcement Friday of one of Michigan’s political stars leaves a wide open race for the 8th Congressional District and little time for potential candidates to launch campaigns.

    Rep. Mike Rogers, the Howell Republican who rose quickly through the leadership ranks in Congress, will retire at the end of the of the year, giving Democrats an unexpected shot at winning a seat Rogers has held for 14 years.

    In the flurry of Friday morning’s news, several Democratic names emerged at potential candidates. Barb Byrum, a former state representative and Ingham County clerk, said she began receiving emails, text messages and phone calls from friends and family encouraging her to run for Congress.

    “I’m seriously considering it,” Byrum of Onondaga told The Detroit News. “Divisive (congressional) politics is definitely a negative, but I’m going to take a careful look at the seat and what it would mean to my family and life in Michigan.”

    Byrum’s mother, Dianne, almost beat Rogers in the tightest congressional race of the country in 2000. Now running a communications firm, Dianne Byrum is not interested in the seat. Barb Byrum has stepped into the spotlight as a possible running mate to gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer and most recently opening her office Saturday to officiate same-sex marriages.

    ...

    “The Democrats could steal it,” said Bill Ballenger of Inside Michigan Politics. “Most people considered it a Republican seat as long as Rogers wanted to stay there. With him gone, it’s an open district.”

    Bill Ballenger, BTW, is a Republican based in Lansing.
    •  Republican (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, Christopher Walker

      Here's what's it's looking like early on the GOP side of the chessboard:

      “I’m certain that with our deep bench of solid, principled, conservative leaders, we will retain Congressman Rogers seat this fall,” Michigan GOP Chairman Bobby Schostak said Friday.

      Local Republicans, however, hadn’t been planning for the seat with Rogers seeming to have a long career in the job and easy reelections since his first close win by 111 votes against Byrum in 2000. At 50, Rogers has achieved the rank of chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and has become a staple on Sunday national talk shows.

      Potential GOP candidates from the Legislature state Sen. Joe Hune from Livingston County and state Rep. Tom McMillin of Rochester Hills, who is trailing in polling in a state Senate race.

      Mike Rogers’ brother, state Rep. Bill Rogers of Brighton, said he’s been flattered by the calls and emails encouraging him to run, but he quickly put any speculation to rest: “Not a chance.”

      Bill Rogers, who is term-limited in Lansing, said he’s not interested the demanding lifestyle of a congressman and is proud the family name will still be represented in Washington with his brother’s radio show.

      ...

      Former Michigan GOP Chairman Saul Anuzis from Lansing announced on his blog Friday he’s considering the job. Former Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop from Rochester also said he’s interested.

      “I’m crazy not to look at an opportunity like this,” said Bishop, who is the chief legal officer for International Bancard Corporation. “... It’s definitely something high on my mind and absolutely something I’m very interested in.”

      Another name floated is Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard. The former U.S. Senate candidate lives outside the district in Birmingham — which is permissible in congressional races — but has broad name recognition in Oakland. Friday afternoon, Bouchard said he’ll pass: “That’s not something that is in the cards for me right now,” he told The News.

      Looks like the GOP's best chance at matching name recognition in the district is out with Bill Rogers declining to run.
      •  What do you think of Barb Byrum? (0+ / 0-)

        Is she the strongest likely challenger here?

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 09:55:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Undoubtedly (9+ / 0-)

          Barb Byrum is far and away the best candidate for a district as extensive as this.  What some may not know about her is she's from rural Onondaga Township where she owns small hardware store with her husband in the very southwestern corner of Ingham County.  She has a degree from MSU in "agribusiness management" in fact.  Her former district was basically all of Ingham County outside Lansing save for a few neighborhoods in south central Lansing.  

          So, while she's a fairly solid progressive - she was one of the four county clerks most active in marrying same-sex couples, last week - she's also just far enough outside of Lansing to not be labeled as some "urban" politician.  And being from where she is and what she went to school for (she also has a law degree, BTW), she speaks to rural concerns about as good as any Dem in the caucus.  I can definitely see her playing in Livingston County and Oakland Counties in the rural areas.

          On the intangibles, she's also dogged and funny and personable, which is always a plus.  She enjoys what she does, and you can tell.  I expect if she runs, it will be a very serious run, and with all of the connections from her mother - who was Minority Leader in the Michigan House, BTW - she will be a formidable candidate.

      •  Looks like the early call on the other thread... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        betelgeux, redrelic17

        For Bill Rogers, of the Kennedy-esque Rogers political dynasty, was just a wee bit premature.

        Still hoping for Egyptian lord of the underworld Saul Anuzis to be Republicans' pick here.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 11:05:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Most Conservative Senator of the Year in 2013 (5+ / 0-)

        Some more background on the GOP side of things...

        Joe Hune, who represents Livingston County (in a district that also includes Shiawassee County and a few townships in southern Ingham County) in the state senate, should probably be considered a or the frontrunner in the GOP primary, thus far, with Bill Rogers and Mike Bouchard declining to run.

        Anyway, Joe Hune was named Inside Michigan Politics "Most Conservative Senator of the Year" in 2013.  His big conservative pet issue for his time in the state house and senate has been proposing an amendment to the state constitution that would bar undocumented immigrants from receiving benefits, saying the state is being "inundated" with them.  The House Fiscal Agency called BS on this when he originally sponsored this.

        I'd still label Rochester Hills state rep Tom McMillin as the unabashed craziest of the two, but if I remember correctly, he's a staunch animal right's supporter or something similar.  He's most known for being maybe second to Dave Agema in his hate for gays, though.

        The clown car is slowly picking up passengers on its way to the GOP primary...

      •  Roger's family lobbying firm? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MetroGnome

        Coming up?

        Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

        by benamery21 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:11:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Even if it's not as promising as Wolf's district (0+ / 0-)

      in VA, it's more promising than other districts, like UT-04. At the very least, it's not going to have an incumbent running.

      "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

      by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:58:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MA: Apparently, the MA GOP had a nasty convention (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bythesea

    last weekend: http://bluemassgroup.com/...
    Their usual method of trying to muscle out primary opponents in the convention created some chaos and disagreement over the rules.  Also, supposedly they adopted some social conservative stuff that even got Tisei to criticize them.

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:14:22 PM PDT

    •  Yes. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades

      Republican officials in Massachusetts adopted conservative-leaning (though not so conservative as national party's) program before convention. Tisei boycotted convention and was "loudly condemed" by state conservatives, who mentioned, that Baker (pro-choice and pro-SSM) participated...

  •  The chaos in the Jefferson County, CO GOP (6+ / 0-)

    Here's all the pertinent info in one link: http://coloradopols.com/...

    They have a mini-Metzger on their hands.

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:24:36 PM PDT

  •  Been waiting all week to post this (9+ / 0-)

    Where are the smokers?

    The map tells an interesting story. Everyone here will see the correlation. (This one is worth one of your free passes past the paywall--if you don't pay already.)

    Ok, so I read the polls.

    by andgarden on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:34:38 PM PDT

    •  Reinforces a lot of my beliefs (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gygaxian

      from a previous policy thread.

      In any case, smoking is increasingly correlated with poverty, and that correlation only seems like it will continue to increase.  Lawmakers should have that in mind.

      •  South TX being a weird exception (0+ / 0-)
        •  Mexicans don't smoke much (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          Central Valley in CA is also poor but low smoking rates.  And in my (relatively limited) experience with California poverty, Mexicans definitely smoke less than you'd expect given income levels.

          21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
          politicohen.com
          Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
          UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

          by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:09:29 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Map shows it is not correlated with poverty (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DCCyclone, andgarden

        Obvious better correlation is smoking is correlated to white Republicans.

        Democratic and minority poor areas are mostly green.

        All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

        by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:42:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wealth seems like a pretty good proxy (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          andgarden, sacman701, Skaje, jncca

          If you look at a county map by median household income, it matches up pretty closely, except heavily Hispanic areas tend to have fewer smokers than you'd expect from wealth. The other notable aberrations are that Mormon areas and college towns tend to have lower smoking rates than wealth would suggest; college towns tend to have low median incomes for obvious reasons, and Mormon areas are smoking-averse for even more obvious reasons.

          The places that stick out as very rich on the wealth map tend to also stick out as having very low rates of smokers, too. The Northeast Corridor is prominent on both maps. Delaware County, OH; Williamson County, TN; Wake County, NC; Hamilton County, IN; Collin County, TX; Fort Bend County, TX; Los Alamos County, NM; and Douglas County, CO are some counties that stick out on both maps that I've noticed. They vary in politics, but many are heavily Republican and white.

          Oldham County, KY is the single darkest green county in Kentucky on the wealth map; on the smoking map, it's a gray county surrounded by yellow and orange counties. Oakland and Livingston Counties in Michigan distinguish themselves significantly from neighboring Wayne and Macomb Counties on both maps. You can pretty clearly identify Waukesha, Washington, and Ozaukee Counties around Milwaukee on both maps.

          Meanwhile, the Indian reservations in the Plains states are quite clearly demarcated by the smoking map. The raft of light green on the income map's southeast corresponds quite well to the raft of yellow and orange in the smoking map. Obviously, poverty and high smoking rates aren't a perfect fit. Aside from the three caveats I noted, there's also some regional differences; given the same income, a location in Kentucky is likely to smoke more than a location in Massachusetts. But still, it looks like a better correlation with poverty than with race or partisanship.

        •  That really seems to be the case (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PassionateJus, andgarden

          I was about to post a comment asking about income and race, as opposed to income alone, but I'm glad I read through the thread before asking.

          It really is poor whites whose smoking rates stay high, poor minorities smoke much less.  That's fascinating.  It speaks to a willingness to accept cultural change, in this case the change toward disapproving tobacco.

          I'm an ex-smoker myself, finally successfully quit a decade ago.  The intersection of smoking and demographics never occurred to me, but it's quite something to see this.

          Go ahead and call me an elitist, but this is yet one more thing that makes Blue America better than Red.

          By the way, I noticed the tobacco-free domination of urban America just the past couple weeks when I attended Iowa State alumni game watches for Iowa State's Big 12 and NCAA Tournament games at a local bar in D.C.  I didn't notice it while I was there, but I noticed every time I got home that me and my clothes didn't smell of smoke.  It was a good feeling not having to strip down and take a shower and throw everything in the washer right away.

          Teabaggers would be going apeshit today were anti-smoking laws a decade later in getting pushed......but American society is past the controversial phase and into acceptance, so they've refrained on the issue.

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

          by DCCyclone on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:49:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Here's info by race/ethnicity (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            andgarden

            http://kff.org/...

            Much higher smoking rates nationally than whites among Native Americans, much lower smoking rates among Asians and Hispanics, similar rates among blacks.  Wide variation by geography and ethnicity.  For instance, blacks are about 3X as likely to smoke as whites in DC, but less likely than whites to smoke in Louisiana.  Hispanics are about 3/4ths as likely to smoke as whites nationally but about twice as likely as whites in Hawaii.  American Indians are about 3X as likely to smoke as whites in South Dakota, but have similar smoking rates as whites in Arizona.

            Income is only part of this.

            Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

            by benamery21 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:19:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Take a look at the bronx, for example (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DCCyclone

              It was a shock to me when I moved back to Philadelphia from NYC a couple of years ago how much people still smoked here. Poverty has something to do with it, I am sure. But also the price of cigarettes. Something like $11/pack in NYC, which seems like a good baseline.

              Ok, so I read the polls.

              by andgarden on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:23:03 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I remember Rachel Maddow saying she (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DCCyclone

            used to think smoking bans in bars was a little much, but then it passed, she got used to it and learned to love it, and now most people are on her side.

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:27:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  For years after (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Skaje

              the ban passed in CA, it was common for low-end establishments to facilitate openly flouting the law (which stance I empathized with), but that has pretty much died as people got more used to the ban.  These days it's mostly limited to allowing smoking closer to exits than legal.  Not being a smoker (although I have smoked a cigarette and/or cigar or two to be sociable, I've never done so habitually or purchased tobacco in any form), I really appreciated the ban in restaurants (food not tasting like an ashtray is a good thing), thought bars and pool halls was a bit much, but don't miss smelling like a smoker after spending a few hours at a local dive.  In my younger days, when my allergies had me so highly sensitized that a waft of cigarette smoke would set off an allergy attack, this would have been a godsend.

              Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

              by benamery21 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 01:05:34 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Well, it is correlated with poverty (0+ / 0-)

          But not all poverty.

          Poor white Republicans, really. "Real America" and coal country likes to smoke. A lot.

          Ok, so I read the polls.

          by andgarden on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:20:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  The last time I read about anti-smoking moves, (0+ / 0-)

        there was a lot of back and forth about whether the taxes really helped create better public health for smokers. Some seemed to believe smokers would just replace that bad habit with something else, making the possible improvements in peoples' lives as well as the cost-savings less effective if not simply a wash. I'm not sure if more recent research has shown anything definitive, though.

        There's a lot to digest from the other thread, and I don't want to get into that here. I'll simply say that I'm mostly in favor of sin taxes, for two reasons. One is that they appear to be less authoritarian than simple bans. I think smoking is nasty and disgusting and I want to shake the people that I know that do it, but I'm not comfortable with telling people they can't smoke in their own homes or something similar. But two, and more importantly, a simple tax is usually the best way to try to implement a preferred policy. It's easier for governments to enforce, it seems, and we get the tax revenue, which can make up for what is lacking or be used to ease the burden on those already being taxed. There's some evidence to say, for instance, that if we taxes alcohol move heavily, we'd get less crime, fewer murders as well as possibly better public health.

        There comes a point when you can't do this stuff without really messing with peoples' lives. That's one reason why a higher gas tax is hard to implement, but if a tax like ones being discussed above is a good idea, Democrats can simply replace something else with it. It'd be nice if more people discussed replacing the payroll tax with something like a higher gas tax, but that's getting too far outside the scope of this thread.

        "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

        by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:25:59 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Women smoke less than men almost everywhere (0+ / 0-)

      but I see a couple of spots in OK and AK where the reverse is reported.

      I suspect the lower smoking rates among Asians and Latinos are dominated by much lower smoking rates among women in those ethnic groups.  Maybe it's my sample group (I probably know too many working class Vietnamese, Chinese, and Filipino guys personally, and am under-weighting my professional Asian colleagues), but I would have guessed Asian guys as more likely to smoke than white guys in California.

      Googling: http://www.lung.org/...

      Latinas are only half as likely to smoke as Hispanic men, who are slightly more likely to smoke than white women.  Chicanos smoke much more than immigrants.

      Asian women are less than 1/3rd as likely to smoke as Asian men, who are almost as likely to smoke as white women.  Both Latinas and Asian women who are smokers cease smoking during pregnancy at much higher rates than whites.

      Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

      by benamery21 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:55:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bonus points to whoever can identify (0+ / 0-)

      the only two counties with single digit smoking rates.

      28, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

      by okiedem on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:15:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  yesterday population growth in Oregon came up (8+ / 0-)

    and whether Oregon might get a 6th district. By right a sixth district would probably lean Republican, but then the 5th probably should have too. Democrats are fortunate that we are more widely distributed in this state than in some other western states, because they were able to take four of our five districts. And if Democrats control the process in 2021, and we gain a district, they could draw a map where 5 of the 6 districts elect a Democrat. Below I have some examples of how Democrats could shoot for a fifth district, or protect their incumbents, or do both. As is standard in DRA blue is district 1, green is 2, purple is the 3rd, red is the 4th, and yellow the 5th, but I've switched the color for the 6th around to aid visibility.

    These are ideas for how districts could turn out. What do you think?

     photo map1_zps1754ab99.jpg

    District 1: D+5 in 2012
    District 2: R+12
    District 3: D+17
    District 4: D+2
    District 5: D+2
    District 6: D+11

    I like this map because it only divides 4 counties, and  aside from Multnomah the other big counites are kept whole, with just a couple precincts taken out of Deschutes. Greg Walden ends up three counties away from his district, but more importantly for the map drafter, Kurt Schrader is drawn into a district too Democratic for a Blue Dog. Many would probably say this 5th CD is an abomination, but I don't think it's all that much worse than the current 5th.

     photo map2_zpsffe0e96c.jpg

    District 1: D+6
    District 2: R+13
    District 3: D+30
    District 4: D+5
    District 5: R+5
    District 6: R+0

    This map was more of an attempt at drawing a cleaner-looking map and giving Republicans a district, but likely two. The 2nd is as conservative as ever, but the Republicans get an R-leaning district based in the more Republican parts of the valley, as well as swingy Tillamook County. Bonamici and DeFazio get safe districts and Blumenauer gets one that aside from Sauvie Island is entirely in Multnomah County, and mostly just Portland. Schrader and Walden, though, get deathmatched in an new, even district. I included the Multnomah suburbs in that district because I thought they fit well, but as you can see below a switch with some other precincts creates a big difference.

     photo alternativemap2_zps738aae47.jpg

    District 1: D+6
    District 2: R+13
    District 3: D+27
    District 4: D+5
    District 5: R+5
    District 6: D+4

    The only difference here is that I've switched SW Portland  and the eastern Multnomah suburbs, which changes the 6th from a deathmatch to a Dem win.

     photo map3_zpsdae5409b.jpg

    District 1: D+5
    District 2: R+11
    District 3: D+16
    District 4: D+4
    District 5: R+0
    District 6: D+11

    While this map protects every incumbent but Greg Walden, the new district is kind of a coastal district, kind of a hodge-podge of leftovers. While Schrader's district is a touch to the right, its also much more in his base in Clackamas County, so I think that balances it out.

     photo map4_zps6f7d64b5.jpg

    District 1: D+6
    District 2: R+12
    District 3:D+25
    District 4: D+2
    District 5: D+0
    District 6: D+6

    Once again all the Dem incumbents are protected, but the 6th ends up kind as the leftovers.

     photo map5_zps48232bd4.jpg

    District 1: D+6
    District 2: R+13
    District 3: D+27
    District 4: D+7
    District 5: D+2
    District 6: R+4

    My final map is kinder to Republicans in that its the only one where Walden stays in his district, and I give them better than even odds in the new 6th coastal district. The coastal counties are ancestrally Deocratic though, so if Dems recruited a moderate, strong candidate, we might be able to compete.

    "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

    by James Allen on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 10:39:57 PM PDT

    •  My very quick-and-dirty take (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Setsuna Mudo, James Allen, Taget

      I haven't actually calculated PVIs yet, but just eyeballing it, only one of the districts (OR-02) should be totally safe for the GOP. I'm sure OR-01, OR-03, and OR-04 have D+ PVIs under this map, pretty sure OR-05 does too, and think OR-06 would too (Gresham plus Hood River plus Corvallis plus the Coast should outweigh Linn and Polk counties). But damned if splitting up the Portland metro area with vertical slices like this doesn't feel like sacrilege, LOL.

      Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

      by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:17:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I like that first map best (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Setsuna Mudo, James Allen

      it's the best partisan map, but not filthy.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:23:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If Oregon is still controlled by Dems in 2020, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Taget

      and I don't see why it wouldn't be, then the Dems should create a solid 5-1 D map.

      Something like this:

      OR 6 dis dem gerry

      Here, obviously the 1st is the Republican vote sink, while DeFazio loses deep-red Douglas County and gains Ashland and Bend, Bonamici, Schrader, and Blumenauer all get safe districts, and the new district (the purple one) is safe Dem with Corvallis, most of Salem, and NW Oregon.

      (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

      by ProudNewEnglander on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:30:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  there isn't a road between Curry and Josephine (0+ / 0-)

        counties, so it's debatable whether that district is legal. There's a bus route that goes from Brookings to Grants Pass, I think, so I would sasy it is, but that's arguable. I don't think Dems would make a map so ugly anyway.

        Also, I expect by 2020 Washington and Yamhill Counties will have too much population for a 6th district, and not need to be supplemented from another counties. The 1st is the only district that had significantly too many people in 2010 and that was primarily from growth in those two counties.

        "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

        by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:23:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Curry and Josephine (0+ / 0-)

          Is that border the longest border between two counties in the U.S. that does not have a road?

          Or are there much longer ones?

          (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

          by ProudNewEnglander on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:51:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have no idea (0+ / 0-)

            but btw, while Obama lost Jackson County in 2012, he won that portion of southern Jackson County by about 10,000 votes, more than enough to compensate for taking the rest of Josephine.

            The problem is that the area is mountainous. The closest road connecting Curry to Josephine is a highway connecting southeastern Coos County to southwestern Douglas County. The legislative map uses that to avoid the Curry district from taking Coos Bay itself. But since the law doesn't say roads, but "transportation connections", I think the bus route should count.

            And shit, I just had a realization that I can fix up some of my stuff on Josephine County.

            "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

            by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:00:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  A couple that may be longer (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ProudNewEnglander, jncca

            Lassen County, CA and Washoe County, NV; Inyo and Tulare Counties, CA. It's probably not possible to say for sure whether these borders are longer than the Coos-Josephine border, for mathematical reasons. The Coos-Josephine border includes pieces that are made up of natural boundaries, like rivers, and the lengths of those types of boundaries are not well-defined.

    •  I liked the penultimate one best (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      since it optimizes Schrader's Blue Dog strength so he can lock down the swingiest district. I'm not sure how viable a map that screws him would be anyway, so it also seems the most realistic.

    •  An updated, revised version... (0+ / 0-)

      Of my previous map:

      Some key differences:

      OR-03 now takes in less of southeast Portland in favor of picking up the I-5 corridor through Tigard and Tualatin and some reddish communities in Marion and Polk counties. Most of the population still lives in either Portland (largely north Portland) or Salem, so it's still safely Democratic, but it's able to soak up some more conservative territory this way.

      OR-04, following James Allen's advice, withdraws from blood-red Crook County completely -- as well as from light-red Jackson County, where my previous map awkwardly extended a tendril to take in most of Ashland and about a quarter of Medford. Instead, the district adds some coastal territory and includes most of conservative Douglas County. It's probably close to a wash in terms of district PVI, but it's more compact this way and has less new terrain for Rep. DeFazio to reckon with. With dark-blue Eugene, solidly blue Springfield, and blue-shifting Bend anchoring the district, it should be pretty safe for Democrats.

      OR-05 gives up a small slice of outer east Portland to OR-06. I did this because I calculated the majority of the former district's population is still in Portland even without that section of outer east, meaning it can take in pretty much all the exurban and rural red parts of Clackamas and Marion counties while still being a lock for Democrats. Just for good measure, it also includes the bluer Clackamas County suburbs, while ceding Lake Oswego and Wilsonville to OR-03. All of this serves to make OR-06 just a little bit more Democratic.

      The majority of the population in OR-02, by the way, is in southern Oregon. This map leaves liberal Ashland behind enemy lines, so to speak, but it offers a more compact redistricting of the area that is a less obvious gerrymander. (Still, my first map's treatment is perfectly legal under Oregon's law requiring districts to have contiguous surface transportation connections.)

      Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

      by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:28:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll try to come up with an estimate of this (0+ / 0-)

        could you either post a zoomed in image of Multnomah or tell me where the divisions are by street?

        "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

        by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:32:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sure (0+ / 0-)

          While I'm at it, I tweaked the lines just a little bit to ensure a contiguous road route through the Cascades for OR-06 (I am using Santiam Pass) without cutting Redmond out of OR-04:

          And close-in on the Portland area:

          The main north-south dividers in Multnomah County are:

          (OR-01 and OR-03) SW 66th between Bonita and Multnomah, SW 45th between Multnomah and Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy, Shattuck between Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy and Patton, West Hills as a geographic feature -- all other West Hills neighborhoods except Bridlemile, which is split along the aforementioned Shattuck, are wholly within OR-01

          (OR-03 and OR-05) SE 12th between Hawthorne and Stark, NE 20th between Stark and Multnomah, NE 18th between Multnomah and Siskiyou, NE 26th between Siskiyou and Fremont, NE 24th between Fremont and Killingsworth, NE 23rd between Killingsworth and Liberty, NE 27th between Liberty and Columbia

          (OR-05 and OR-06) SE 136th between Foster and Division, SE 139th between Division and Main, and SE/NE 148th between Main and Marine Drive

          Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

          by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 01:04:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  And now for something completely different (0+ / 0-)

      On this map, I concede Hood River, as well as The Dalles, Bend, and other Democratic-friendly areas east of the Cascades (there aren't a whole lot of them), but create a winnable southern Oregon district that includes light-red Jackson County and the liberal stronghold of Ashland.

      From a partisan perspective, just eyeballing it, I don't think this map is quite as strong for Democrats as my other proposal; the PVIs of OR-03, OR-04, and OR-06 are all going to be fairly close to EVEN on this map, although I think they should all lean Democratic.

      OR-01 and OR-02 should both be pretty solidly Democratic, but they could be evened out a bit more if northeast Portland was traded to OR-02 in exchange for Wilsonville and Yamhill County.

      And yes, I did put all of Eugene and all of Springfield into separate districts.

      Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

      by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 03:18:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This (0+ / 0-)

      To our Oregon friends, since I've had to eyeball James Allen's precinct maps and diaries for politics of areas, where would these districts land:

      24 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 Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:26:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hmm (0+ / 0-)

        The white district is going to be solidly Republican, of course. The red district will probably lean slightly Republican, but should be moderately competitive (similar to WA-03 in a lot of ways). The blue district will be swingy, probably leaning slightly Democratic, similar to the current OR-05. The yellow district has a definite Democratic lean, pretty similar to the current OR-04 and maybe a little bit bluer. The green and purple districts are totally safe Democratic.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:45:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I was actually think the red leaned Dem (0+ / 0-)

          but I'll take your word on it.

          24 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 Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:02:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  That outer portion of Washington County... (0+ / 0-)

            Is fairly Republican, and of the major population centers in the district, only Corvallis and Astoria are particularly liberal. The rural parts of the Coast are fairly Democratic, but the rural parts of the Valley are pretty Republican.

            Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

            by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:15:34 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  5 has the same potential legal problem (0+ / 0-)

        I mentioned above: potentially no "transportation connections" between Curry & Josephine. I'll look closer tomorrow.

        "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

        by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:00:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  On Google Maps (0+ / 0-)

          There are definitely roads between the two.

          24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:58:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  asdf (0+ / 0-)

            link

            the most direct land route between the two involves driving south to Crescent City, California.

            "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

            by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:21:47 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  "most direct" (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              HoosierD42

              There are still land routes between the two.

              24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:40:58 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm doubtful (0+ / 0-)

                that there is a real road between them that is less direct than going out of state, but if there is or are, they are almost certainly logging roads, and I generally don't count logging roads in remote areas, nor do I think a court would. I've driven on well maintained logging roads and poorly maintained logging roads in remote areas, and I do not think the latter could be seen by anyone attempting any kind of honesty as a real transportation connection.

                "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

                by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:40:59 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  Hmm (0+ / 0-)

        What about this:

        24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:12:03 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  damn you (0+ / 0-)

          I was already doing results for the first map. This one look easier though, aside from Jackson County. Though Salem is hard to make out, I assume all of it is in one district?

          "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

          by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:24:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Answers to those questions for this (2nd) map: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            James Allen

            Most of Salem is in red, but the section between Four Corners and Hayesville east of I-5 is in purple. Keizer is also in purple.

            For this map, all of Newburg is in green.

            Here are some details:

            24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:36:11 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  You probably don't want... (0+ / 0-)

          That yellow district to take in Medford, which is way more conservative than Ashland.

          Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

          by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:30:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

            Then howabout this:

            24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:48:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Or would it be better to do this: (0+ / 0-)

              24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:51:24 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  My guess is Grants Pass is even worse (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                James Allen

                than Medford.  But yeah, Ashland is a dark blue college town type place except there isn't a college.  It's just artsy.  Medford is a medium town with lots of retirees, and Grants Pass is just a generic mountain west town.

                21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
                politicohen.com
                Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
                UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

                by jncca on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:37:04 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  So the first alternative yellow is probably better (0+ / 0-)

                  24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:40:44 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Grants Pass is indeed worse (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  wwmiv, James Allen

                  Grants Pass is actually more Republican than Josephine County as a whole.

                  •  I really wish that we had Oregon data for DRA (0+ / 0-)

                    Oregon is one state, because of the lack of DRA data (and really the lack of usable data to input into DRA), that I do not know that much about, despite having spent a good amount of vacation time in Portland.

                    24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:01:44 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                •  SOU is in Ashland (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  jncca

                  It has an enrollment of about 7000.  My niece (Medford conservative) got her bachelor's in education and is working on her master's there.

                  Ashland is more liberal than most of the state, it's a huge outlier for the area.  

                  Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

                  by benamery21 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:55:56 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Medford is the largest Republican-leaning city in (0+ / 0-)

                  the state.

                  "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

                  by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:08:29 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yeah (0+ / 0-)

                    I wonder if it may be slowly drifting toward the center, though.  More Hispanics and more Bay area Californians, although admittedly Jacksonville is more popular with the Bay area folk.

                    Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

                    by benamery21 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:41:53 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I have family in Jacksonville (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      wwmiv

                      apparently, and it is much smaller but also seems more elastic in its ability to vote for Dems. I haven't looked at enough elections to have a firm opinion on that, though.

                      I'm not sure about Medford yet, I haven't looked at Southern Oregon yet for my series and when I do (probably this summer) I'll have a much more informed opinion.

                      "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

                      by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:01:36 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  My "ear to the ground" there (0+ / 0-)

                        is mostly my brother (my other relatives there are much less inclined to be interested in or observant of such things), and he is a lot less in touch with the day-to-day scene in the whole Rogue Valley and its environs than he used to be, for multiple reasons but primarily because he's out of town working as an OTR trucker most of the time these days.

                        Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

                        by benamery21 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:16:30 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

      •  how much of Newberg is in the 3rd? (0+ / 0-)

        Also, Hillsboro? How much of the northwest side Portland is in the 2nd?

        "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

        by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:16:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I accidentally, apparently, did not save this map (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          James Allen

          :/

          Newburg was all in the red, iirc, and the purple simply has the surrounding three or four precincts to the east.

          Purple has downtown Portland, the Pearl, South Waterfront, and most of the population of the NW. The green has the more far flung stuff but does have a couple of precincts for population reasons of the NW.

          Side note: I don't think I've ever mentioned that my sister lived in Portland for almost a decade and is about to move back in a month :( ...

          Hillsboro (where my sister lived) is all in the purple, iirc. Red has the non-Hillsboro stuff just to the west.

          24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:41:25 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Okay (0+ / 0-)

        1: 51.8% Obama in 2012
        2: 78.1
        3: 62.5
        4: 52.1
        5: 55.2

        "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

        by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:08:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  WI-AG (7+ / 0-)

    Zach Wisniewski of the Wisconsin progressive blog Blogging Blue stated that word on the ground in Wisconsin is that polling "doesn’t look good for Republican Attorney General candidate Brad Schimel" in a hypothetical Schimel vs. Jon Richards matchup.

    Of course, that's based on high-grade rumors, since there's been no polls (either internal polls or public polls) of the WI-AG race that have been publicly released.

    This is one race that I'd like to see public polling of more than any other (preferably by PPP and/or Marquette).

    •  If you wish to check my diary (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DownstateDemocrat

      that is still in the list of diaries related to the DKE front page, I have rated this race as a Toss-Up. And in this case the Toss-Up has a little Democratic "Tilt". My pre-poll numbers of this race are positive, the worst point is the fundraising data, that must improve for the Democratic candidates.

      For me, WI-AG is a race to fight and to win.

  •  PA Governor. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gygaxian, TofG, pademocrat

    We are probably going to unseat one of the most disgusting (yes, he's a Republican) governors this commonwealth has ever had.  Seems that the Republicans are going to hold their noses and run this failure again - which is good because nobody likes him.

    The real race is for the Democratic nomination.  This is important.  Wolf is a populist and NOT a career politician.  The others are strictly part of the machine.

    We need a good governor and somebody who can show the nation what a good populist leader can do.

    Celtic Merlin
    Carlinist

    Struggle with dignity against injustice. IS there anything more honorable that a person can do?

    by Celtic Merlin on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 11:19:42 PM PDT

    •  Not hold noses on Corbett. Close their eyes. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Celtic Merlin
    •  I consider myself a populist Dem (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ProgMD, jncca, R30A, bythesea, MichaelNY

      but I am skeptical of anyone without a record as one, after experience. I think McCord has been somewhat brash but any of the candidates seem fine to me. I like political experience, though, I don't find "career politician" to be a slur.

      "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

      by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:53:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Need a nominee who wins BIG in November (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Celtic Merlin

      A landslide victory for our nominee helps downballot races and increases our chances of taking back either chamber in the legislature. I think Wolf can win by the biggest margins against Corbett and possibly even crack 60% I feel like he would get a lot of crossover support from Rs and win Indies by a good amount.

      •  Yes, he's our best hope for November. (0+ / 0-)

        He has the populist bonafides and holds some attractiveness to moderate Repubs as a business owner.  I like him more than anybody else we have on the D ticket.

        I also believe that he's gonna rock the socks off the loser we have occupying the Gov's Mansion today.

        You're right about helping the down-ticket folks.  I hadn't even considered that.

        Celtic Merlin
        Carlinist

        Struggle with dignity against injustice. IS there anything more honorable that a person can do?

        by Celtic Merlin on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:14:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Why is Wolf the strongest? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Stephen Wolf, gabjoh, MichaelNY

        And why will he win the biggest margins?  I've heard this assertion many times by several people but no one has really given much in the way of explanation.

        Also, I'm skeptical of there being much in the way of coattails.  In 2006, Rendell won reelection by almost 21 points, breaking 60%, and Casey beat Santorum by 18...Dems only gained 8/203 seats in the House (a few of which were realignments) and the Senate changed zero seats.  In 2008, Obama wins PA by 10...Dems only net 2 seats in the House and actually lose one seat in the Senate.  Any legislature seats that are won or lost will be based on the individual strength of the candidates (and the new map) and not have that much to do with what's going on statewide.

    •  McCord is the strongest GE candidateW (0+ / 0-)

      Wolf is only as good as his TV commercials.

      "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

      by Paleo on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:03:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I had no idea (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    abgin, itskevin, Taget, pademocrat

    that Sheldon Adelson, a GOP megadonor who made his money in casinos, is an ardent opponent of internet gambling.  Guess I shouldn't be too surprised...he doesn't want the competition after all.

    What is surprising is that Republicans are so desperate to kiss his finger that they are all pledging their opposition to internet gambling as well.  It's so brazenly crass and opportunistic..."family values" conservatives claiming to oppose the evils and dangers of internet gambling while begging for cash from a gambling mogul.

    •  Joke? (0+ / 0-)
      that Sheldon Adelson, a GOP megadonor who made his money in casinos, is an ardent opponent of internet gambling.
      You're being facetious, right?  I just want to make sure. lol
      •  No, he's opposed to it (0+ / 0-)

        because it would take business away from real-life casinos like he owns.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 11:26:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, I get that. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          James Allen

          I just thought it would be completely obvious that he'd oppose online gaming given his brick-and-mortar empire.

          •  But aren't the other casino owners for it (0+ / 0-)

            because it's a game they want to get in on (no pun intended)? I seem to vaguely remember something to that effect, though I may be misremembering. (Paging atdnext, paging atdnext...)

            "Pillows, but no sleep / Feathers, but no birds." | Pro-transit young black urban progressive (not liberal) | SSP/DKE | -9, -7.79 | NJ-05 | Yard signs don't vote. | $15 and a union!

            by gabjoh on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:20:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Of course, only Adelson opposes it (0+ / 0-)

              being he has the vision of an 80 year old asshole.

              Adelson is all by himself on this issues, with a few minor exceptions.  Even one member of his board of directors owns $51million worth of stock in an online gambling company!

              All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

              by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:10:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  But the thing is (6+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gabjoh, abgin, bythesea, Gygaxian, Skaje, jncca

          that's not why he says he opposes it.

          Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sheldon Adelson is “morally opposed” to online gambling, calling it a “toxin” that will rob the young and poor.
          http://www.bloomberg.com/...

          26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

          by HoosierD42 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 01:39:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  New Jersey's Internet gambling (0+ / 0-)

          I heard something on the radio the other day about NJ's moves to implement online gambling. Apparently, the Atlantic City casinos were involved in it and seemed to embrace it, but mostly because they don't want to lose out. So it's not something that cuts clearly one way or the other.

          Also, amusing and also depressingly enough, there was talk of how the revenue projections were inflated (shock!) and how Christie once again delayed pension payments or something. Because that's worked so damn in other states as well as New Jersey.

          "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

          by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:31:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I guess casinos here understand (0+ / 0-)

            the concept of horizontal integration while Adelson is too lazy to consider that.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:50:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Too lazy, too old, too stupid, too mean (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              bythesea

              Too pigheaded.... he is "too" much of too many things, and too lacking in logic and ability to adapt.

              All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

              by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:11:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  How does Adelson feel about Christie and Jersey... (0+ / 0-)

      trying to get sports book betting in their casino's?  Nevada would lose a ton, and it would open up the door to all States and eventually online sports betting no doubt in my mind.  It won't stop in Jersey...

      Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

      by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:17:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Interested in House Races (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MetroGnome

    With MI-08 opening up, along with VA-08 and PA-06 and others, it's becoming abundantly clear that we're likely going to pick up some House seats. I'm not prepared to call the House one way or another because we don't know what the state of the country will be in November, and House races are especially sensitive to "national moods" due to their lower visibility.

    There will come a time when we have the House again. It'll probably happen sooner than most people think, because most people fail to consider the shifting coalition lines and immigration/emigration patterns that will render some of these gerrymanders less effective as time goes on. This, of course, greatly interests me.

    But what interests me more is this. We can build up some incumbency in swing seats like PA-06 and MI-08. These Democrats won't be like Mike McIntyre or Jim Matheson. When we take the majority again, that majority will be less brittle than it was in 2010. We'll better withstand Republican wave elections, and we'll be able to enact more progressive legislation with fewer defections (see all the people who voted against the ACA). Now that we'll be holding onto districts around even PVI instead of districts with PVIs north of R+10, Pelosi's and Hoyer's jobs will be easier.

    TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

    by Le Champignon on Fri Mar 28, 2014 at 11:49:13 PM PDT

    •  You talk about 2022? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen, TofG

      Except for extremely big wave i don't see chances for Democrats to gain majority before... Democratic vote is much more concentrated, and thus a lot of it - directly wasted (who needs to win with 95-97% when you could win TWO districts by 55%?). Plus - 2011-12 gerrymandering, and so on. You will need 2006-2008 wave even for very small majority...

      •  A good year is necessary, but not a big wave (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jorge Harris, TofG

        We are talking about 20 seats, not about 60. The maps have a Republican lean, the median seat is in R+2, but just, make this R+2 a 51D-49R and surely it would be enough.

        This is not a big wave, it is a victory by the margins of Obama in 2008.

        2016 can be the year for it.

      •  Nah, I don't think so (0+ / 0-)

        Like I said, the idea that Democrats are shut out of the House for a decade is based on current coalition lines and current population locations. Gerrymanders are an excellent tool, but people in 2010 could only guess at the population distribution of 2014, 2016, and so on. Gerrymanders lose their power over time - some faster, some slower.

        Matter of fact, assuming we don't take the House this year, I would not be surprised at all if we take it in 2016. With a new party leader in the form of HRC (assuming she runs), the coalition lines will change (as they always do), and we'll be less reliant on the minority vote. There's also the ACA to consider. A policy initiative like that has a tendency to disrupt a party's traditional voting blocs, for better or for worse. (See gun control, 1994; Civil Rights Act, 1964; and New Deal, starting in 1933.)

        Just off the top of my head I can name several seats we can easily flip. VA-08 (thanks, DCC), PA-06, FL-13, FL-02, WV-02, MI-08, CA-31, NE-02, IL-13, IA-03, and AR-02. That's eleven seats right there. Assuming two incumbent losses, all we need are eight more seats (given that we're going to lose UT-04 and NC-07), plus a couple more for insurance purposes.

        There were tons of House races in 2012 that were decided by less than 5% of the vote. Given that 2012 was a neutral year, what would it look like if the national environment favored Dems like 2002 or 2004 did for Republicans, where we win the GCB by 3-5%?

        I'm not saying it's terribly likely at this point. I'm just saying it's still on the table.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

        by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:12:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  You must mean VA-10, not VA-08 (5+ / 0-)

      Both are open, but VA-08 is safe Dem.  VA-10 is Wolf's seat that would be a pick-up.

      And if I have anything to say about it, will be!

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

      by DCCyclone on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:50:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  CLT-Mayor: Jennifer Roberts? (7+ / 0-)

    You may remember her as the Democrat who ran a great campaign for NC-09 in 2012 and came closer than many people expected.  She is also a former county commissioner.  She is expressing interest in being mayor and says she has contacted city council.

    http://m.wsoctv.com/...

    The other top contender is Mayor Pro Tem Marcus Barnes.  I favor Roberts, though, because unlike Barnes, she is interested in running for a full term next year and could possibly be a candidate for statewide office down the road, were she successful as mayor.

    But the search for mayor is not limited to these two.  City council could throw us a wildcard on Monday.

  •  HoosierD42's Weekend Court Report™ (10+ / 0-)

    Confirmations

    • Christopher Reid Cooper to the District Court for the District of Columbia. Prior to his judgeship, he was a clerk for a Carter-appointed judge on the D.D.C., and an official in the Clinton Justice Department. Most recently he was an  partner at a law firm, specializing in anti-corruption cases. Cloture was 56-43 (Collins and Murkowski voting Aye) and final confirmation was 100-0. The D.D.C. is now 10-4 Democratic-appointed active judges (12-6 D total), with 2 further vacancies and 1 pending nomination. Cooper replaces Royce Lamberth, a Reagan-appointed judges who assumed senior status.
    • M. Douglas Harpool to the Western District of Missouri. He's a former Democratic state Representative, serving from 1983-1992. Most recently he was a civil attorney. Cloture was  56-43 (Collins and Murkowski voting Aye) and final confirmation was 93-5 (Coburn, Crapo, McCain, Risch and Shelby voting No). The W.D. Mo. is now 5-1 D active (9-3 D total) with 1 further vacancy and a pending nomination. Harpool replaces Richard Dorr, a G.W. Bush-appointed judge who passed away.
    • Gerald McHugh, Jr. and Edward G. Smith to the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. McHugh is a civil litigator and former clerk to a JFK-appointed judge. Smith was a judge on the Court of Common Pleas in Northampton County, and a veteran JAG lawyer for the Navy. Cloture for McHugh was 56-43 (the usual) and final confirmation was 59-41 (Coats, Collins, Hatch and McCain voting Aye). Cloture for Smith was 75-23 (click through for the votes, I won't list them all) and final confirmation was 69-31. This is weird. All of the nay votes on final confirmation are Democrats. I don't see anything on his resume that would be objectionable to Democrats in general, so this baffles me. Also, it's the first time I've seen less votes for final confirmation than cloture. Anyway, the E.D. Pa. is now 6-11 R active (10-26 R total) with 5 more vacancies and no nominations. All but one active judges were appointed by G.W. Bush or Obama, so expect this balance to be locked in for a while. McHugh replaces Harvey Bartle III, a G.H.W. Bush judge who took senior status. Smith replaces Berle Schiller, a Clinton judge who took senior status.

    Movement on nominations

    • The Judiciary Committee voted on 4 nominations, all decided by voice vote. Gregg Costa to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, Tanya Chutkan to the District of Columbia, M. Hannah Lauck to the Eastern District of Virginia and Leo Sorokin to the District of Massachusetts.
    • A cloture vote was held for John Owens to be a judge on the 9th Circuit. The seat he's been appointed to has been vacant since 2004, for a very weird reason. The seat's predecessor, Stephen Trott, was originally appointed to a duty station in California. During his tenure, he moved to Idaho. So when he assumed senior status, there's been a turf war over which state the seat "belongs" to. Well I guess the war is over, since Owens, a Los Angeles lawyer, is about to take the seat. The cloture vote was 54-44, completely party line. Vote on final confirmation will likely be next week.

    Nominations
    No new nominations this week

    That's all folks!

    26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

    by HoosierD42 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 01:35:14 AM PDT

  •  SCOPA (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    benamery21, LordMike, KingofSpades, abgin

    On the subject of Pennsylvania judges, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is down a justice after last week, as Republican Chief Justice Ronald Castille reached the age of mandatory retirement on March 16. His seat is currently vacant, and the Court is now balanced, three Dems and three Republicans (as I mentioned above, judges are partisanly elected in Pennsylvania).

    A Corbett appointment would require 2/3 confirmation by the state Senate, so Dems would get at least some say over who is appointed. The next elections are in 2015.

    26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

    by HoosierD42 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:04:05 AM PDT

  •  Good cheesy political novels. (0+ / 0-)

    A few weeks ago someone mentioned something silly a Republican said about Putin retaking Alaska.  Which instantly made me think of an old book I read by Allen Drury, Come Nineveh, Come Tyre, about a liberal peacenik President who got completed schooled by the Soviets.

    Which got me wondering.. what are some thoroughly enjoyable but completely wrong, cheesy, misguided, or flat out insane political fiction you've read?

    To give my example Come Nineveh, Come Tyre was the penultimate novel in the "Advice and Consent" series by Allen Drury.  The first book being "Advice and Consent" which won a Pulitzer Prize and was was nominated for an award at Cannes.  Come Nineveh, Come Tyre was in no danger of winning any such rewards.

    When I first read I was a Republican in High School and delighted in how it and it's companion novel, A Promise of Joy (which presented an alternate ending to Come Nineveh, Come Tyre), presented a contrast to a strong "Ronald Reagan" style foreign policy and a weak "Jimmy Carter" style foreign policy.  With of course the world "luckily" enjoying the fruits Ronald Reagan had "brought" us.  I was surprised when I found out both novels were actually written back in the 1970s.

    Even being more progressive now I can enjoy them in a different way.  The headlines from the liberal media that help drive the narrative are more illustrative of the conservative fantasy than as opposed to actual headlines you'd expect.  I didn't understand then and I still don't quite understand now some of the political satire the author was making.  Not having been alive during the period the books were written stuff such as the Congress on Racial Equality and it's leadership are essentially meaningless to me.  Even reading up on it I miss the nuances that people who were alive during this period and saw these people he is lampooning would've picked right up on.  Some names I recognize since he only changes them subtly (like Hale Boggs) and some I have no clue.

    The book for all it's silliness is enjoyable and even if the exact narrative is silly it still presents an interesting question.  How can a political system react to incompetence and/or weakness and what checks and balances would be able to counteract it?  An interesting question as we continue to expand on the Nixonian vision of an "imperial presidency" where any disruption in the ability of the President to rule becomes a national crisis.

    It's sister novel a Promise of Joy is interesting since (even though it was written in the 1970s) more closely mirrored what happened in reality.  Russia and China seem to crumble economically and politically in the face of America they cannot afford to beat.  But in reality they just become more nimble and more dangerous as nationalism and regional ambitions completely supplant ideology.

    Any one else have any political fiction that was fun and enjoyable to read but to use a movie anology more of a "Red Dawn" than it was an "Apocalypse Now"?

    The lady was enchanted and said they ought to see. So they charged her with subversion and made her watch TV -Spirogyra

    by Taget on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:07:34 AM PDT

  •  All you informed people are incredible. (8+ / 0-)

    This is how Progressives fight gerrymandering and GOP in general, by getting informed and taking part when opportunities arise. Cheers!

  •  Dems should run HARD on ACA in November... (12+ / 0-)

    Really demonize the GOP as a whole for being completely against it.  Make Boehner's "Hell no you can't" floor speech famous - played over and over again along with publicizing the 50+ repeal votes the House has held.  

    Playing defense on it gives the impression that the GOP is ultimately right on the issue to be attacking on it as they MUST be operating from a footing of strength to make it a core attack issue (it would be assumed).  

    Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

    by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:20:39 AM PDT

    •  Yep, and most of them get it (5+ / 0-)

      In the end, R's just need to depress turnout to win, and D's just need to get their core constituencies off their asses. That suggests R's will try and make the conversation as ugly as possible, and the D's will try to inspire with lots of talk about ACA and CIR.

    •  And Kaiser poll seems to indicate good support for (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, bythesea, pademocrat

      the ACA:
      49%---------------keep and improve it
      10%---------------keep it as is
      18%--------------repwal
      11%--------------repeal and replace with Republican alt.
      10%--------------other.

      •  "Improve" is a very ambiguous term (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DCCyclone

        To some, it means expanding, to others it means stripping out most of it and keeping just a bit, and to others it means essentially rendering it useless.

        I would be leery about putting faith in those 49% being much of a bloc at all.

        I am a Tom Rukavina Democrat

        by OGGoldy on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:38:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They don't have to be (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MetroGnome

          If fifty one percentage points out of that 59% are supporters or otherwise wanting a more leftist system, it's pretty hard for Republicans to get a majority from the other 49%. Plus there are the "others".

          Certainly it shows that people aren't too open to the days of going back to the way things were pre-ACA, which has been the Republican position since day one. Sure, they make noises about tort reform, health savings accounts, and other complete bullshit, but no one is really saying, "Huh, that's actually a good idea." It's mostly a placeholder so they can say, "Republicans have ideas too!"

          TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

          by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:49:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Fortunately for us... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bythesea, jncca, MetroGnome, PassionateJus

      ....Bill Clinton is saying the same thing, and Dem pols listen to Bill Clinton.  There are a lot of positives w/ the ACA that have been totally brushed under the rug for some completely bizarre reason.

      "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

      by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 03:05:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We can nitpick polls... (0+ / 0-)

      But they all pretty much tell the ACA is not broadly popular at all. I don't think I've seen a single poll showing a clear majority supporting the law in it's entirety no fix/improve questions added. While the fix/improve it strategy is fine it still implies the law is broken or flawed and brings up why they voted it in the first place. I think it's a mistake for Dems to go full fledged for the ACA when there is clearly no broad support it. It's like the Rs telling themselves to run hard on Iraq/War on Terror...

    •  Yeah, these Dems have to realize that ACA (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PassionateJus, askew, MichaelNY

      will NEVER be popular if they run away from it screaming at every opportunity. It ends up validating Republican attacks, and they should be smart enough not to feed their narrative.

      Gay suburbanite in NJ-11

      by interstate73 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:45:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, I'm really confused as to why (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, MetroGnome

      We haven't really seen any ads yet that fit the form of [Insert story from sympathetic person with expensive illness that can now afford to get covered because of the ACA], followed by said person looking into the camera and saying "now [Republican candidate who supports repeal] wants to take away my lifesaving healthcare." I mean, there's got to be plenty of stories to that effect, especially now that the exchanges are up, and it would be a great antidote to the bullshit Koch "tetimonial" ads.

      •  Is it too soon for that? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        If not, why not?

        If so, is it because people aren't paying attention yet, because our candidates don't have definite opponents, because we're concerned about matching the Koch brothers dollar-for-dollar (or as close to it as possible), or some combination of that?

        As I've said before, it's worth having our people go door to door in different areas, if only to see how effective it might be. It's probably more helpful in a House district, but it might work to help us in the Senate, too. And if I recall correctly, AFP is doing just that, so we'll be hit from all sides. The benefit to this is that it's essentially free, unlike paid media.

        "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

        by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:58:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It must be due to preserving funds (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, MetroGnome, bjssp

          Conservative groups have money to burn. Democrats have a significant advantage with fundraising in each Congressional committee so that has to kick in eventually. Hopefully it isn't too late.

          "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:27:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  SC-Sen: Will anyone challenge Tim Scott? (0+ / 0-)

    I guess I shouldn't be greedy, because we already got Hutto to run for the seat taken by Graham and that's probably the easier race. Still, it'd be nice to get solid candidates for both races.

    Also, it shouldn't need to be said, but I'll say it anyway: it'll be hard to win even if Graham loses and probably impossible if he doesn't. But as with KS and MS, it's all upside, considering it's not like we were going to be competitive in any circumstances.

    "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

    by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:48:58 AM PDT

  •  NY: Budget deal gives de Blasio most (11+ / 0-)

    of the money he wanted for pre-k, without the tax hike. The mayor wanted 340 million for the city. That much has been allocated to the state, with 300 million going to NYC.

    It's somewhat of a victory for de Blasio, who really needed one. I'm guessing he takes it, because really what else can he do.

    link

    •  It's a defeat (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ChadmanFL

      Certainly for public schools as a chunk of the money will go in one door and right out the other.  Thanks to that POS Cuomo.  And deBlasio's failure to fight back.

      http://nycpublicschoolparents.blogspot.com/...

      "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

      by Paleo on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:25:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What more could BDB have done? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jj32, Setsuna Mudo, sulthernao, bythesea

        As I understand it, his hands were kind of tied based on the way NYC deals with taxes.

        "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

        by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:37:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Spoke up sooner and louder (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SaoMagnifico, gabjoh, ChadmanFL

          He's becoming NYC's version of Obama.  His heart is in the right place, but he has feet of clay and not the strongest of spines.

          "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

          by Paleo on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:40:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, (5+ / 0-)

            what would that have done to really impact the end result? I'm not advocating for a particular position here, I'm just saying that speaking up sooner and louder seems kind of hollow as advice. If Cuomo just wasn't going to let up, he wasn't going to get anywhere.

            Like you, I also wonder where this money is coming from, although I will hold out judgement until I read more.

            On a somewhat related note, I thought you might be interested in this. I don't know about the property tax issue to really say anything definitive, but Cuomo is being attacked on both sides. I seem to remember Spitzer trying to focus on this sort of thing as a way of reducing the cost of public services, but that was a long time ago and I don't recall if he approached it in the same way.

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:52:29 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I dont know if it would have made a difference (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SaoMagnifico, ehstronghold, bythesea

            but I think he made a mistake going after the horse carriages and charter schools first.

            The pre-K initiative seemed to be the centerpiece of his campaign, and I would have focused on that, from day one.

            Also, not sure how much it hurt, but the problems dealing with the snowstorms were also a distraction.

            I think de Blasio will have to take what he can get when it comes to pre-k and then hope for an actual Dem Senate in a few years.

            •  de Blasio (0+ / 0-)

              should keep his head down for the next few years honestly. Cuomo is hellbent on destroying him or at least making sure that he knows that Cuomo is at the top of the political food chain and not him.

              The Republican party is now an extreme right-wing party that is owned by their billionaire campaign contributors. - Bernie Sanders

              by ehstronghold on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:00:58 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Cuomo held all the cards (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike

        I never thought he would win and it just shows how inexperienced he is thinking he would. He should've just accepted the deal when it came out instead of continuing to rally for the tax increase and moved onto other issues. Taking on the charter schools and banning horse carriages was just stupid, I agree he should keep quiet for the next few months and not do anything controversial.

    •  Still think Quinn would've been better off (0+ / 0-)

      I know she's not popular on here but she would've had a far smoother ride than De Blasio has had.

    •  Really kind of disgusting to me (10+ / 0-)

      That state politicians can hamstring cities' abilities to tax and govern themselves. New York City should not be subject to every whim of New York State.

      26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

      by HoosierD42 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:00:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  NJ 1: Ex-Eagle Garry Cobb officially in (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32

    "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

    by Paleo on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:15:02 AM PDT

  •  SC-GOV: Nikki Haley gets primary challenger (4+ / 0-)

    Attorney Tom Ervin has just filed to run a primary challenge against Nikki Haley.  He is running as a "center-right" alternative to Haley, so he's probably not likely to beat her.  But the story does say that he is prepared to self-fund, so he could at least be a potential unwanted distraction for Haley.

    Businessman Steve French is running as a Libertarian.  Reports were that he could self-fund his campaign, but it is unclear to what extent he is able.  The only concern is that with Vincent Sheheen being pro-life, French is the only pro-choice candidate running.  Andre Bauer is still considering running as an independent, and a "mystery Confederate candidate" is also considering running.

    30, pal of Foot Foot, VA-02 (resident), NJ-01 (my old ancestral home)

    by footfootfoot on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:47:05 AM PDT

  •  I've been thinking about LA-Sen (0+ / 0-)

    And it might not be all bad if Mary Landrieu loses this year. If she loses, and David Vitter becomes governor in 2015, then I think she would be the favorite to win that seat in 2016.

    Gay suburbanite in NJ-11

    by interstate73 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:58:37 AM PDT

  •  My Dem MN map with 7 CDs (0+ / 0-)

    I'll post it later with an alternate one where I dismantle the 7th, give the blue farm towns and St. Cloud to the 8th, etc.

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:03:07 PM PDT

    •  Oh, I didn't split St. Paul nor Minneapolis (0+ / 0-)

      and I kept as many towns and cities whole as I could.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:11:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ukraine, but purely electoral politics (4+ / 0-)

    Vitali Klitschko, the former boxing champion, is dropping his presidential bid in favor of running for Kyiv mayor. He has endorsed former foreign minister and wealthy businessman Petro Poroshenko, who has led in the polls against former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Story here.

    "The only way to win is by nominating a single candidate from the democratic ranks," Klitschko said. "This should be a candidate with the greatest support from the people." [...]

    Poroshenko announced his candidacy to supporters Friday evening in his childhood hometown of Vinnytsia while holding up a religious icon of the Virgin Mary and child. [...]

    "The principle of 'brother for brother' should be built on and broadened — we should not just have 'brother for brother' but also 'friend for friend,'" said Poroshenko, whose worth is estimated by Forbes magazine at $1.3 billion.

    Klitschko and Poroshenko are both affiliated with the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform, a pro-European party that generally favors decentralization of executive authority. Tymoshenko's Fatherland party has a similar political ideology, but seems to be viewed as more nationalist.

    And not that we should need another reminder, but we need to keep any discussion of this focused on the politics of the May 25 elections in Ukraine.

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 12:09:01 PM PDT

    •  "Boxer drops bid for president" (6+ / 0-)

      Headline threw me for a minute..........

      All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

      by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 03:01:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  My initial prediction (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SaoMagnifico, MichaelNY

      (may change of course) is Poroshenko - Tymoshenko runoff. Though heavily populated (and, generally, pro-Russia) east may support someone else, they have few first-rate candidates so far... The same - for strongly nationalist Carpat region.

      •  Poroshenko seems likely to have more appeal... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        To the east in a runoff than Tymoshenko, whose very unfortunate anti-Russian comments that were leaked earlier this month constitute a rather serious gaffe for a presidential contender. Plus, Poroshenko was born in Odessa province.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:30:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, i know... (0+ / 0-)

          But Tymoshenko is fiery and skilled speaker....

        •  One Major reason Why Putin's Invasion A Mistake (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Possible Liberal

          One major reason why Putin's invasion and annexation of Crimea is a huge mistake for him is that 1) Crimea (which would have probably supported someone Putin would have liked) will no longer be voting in the May 25th election and 2) his belligerence will push Eastern Ukrainians into voting for someone much more hostile to Russia than they would have been otherwise.

          Even if Putin had ultimately wanted to take Crimea he probably should have waited until after the May 25th elections.

    •  Role of Christianity in Ukrainian politics (0+ / 0-)

      I'm struck by what seems like the blatantly sectarian appeal of announcing one's candidacy while holding up an icon of the Virgin and Child. Is the place of Christianity in public life one of the electoral issues in this campaign, or do all major parties agree on this?

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:11:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bus Pass Elvis Party beats Liberal Democrats (5+ / 0-)

    http://www.bbc.com/...

    David Laurence Bishop, who goes by the name of Lord Biro, stood as a candidate for the Bus Pass Elvis Party.

    He received 67 votes in the by-election in Clifton North, Nottingham, with Lib Dem candidate Tony Marshall coming last with 56. Labour won with 1,174 votes.

    Taking the news in jest, a national Lib Dem spokesman said: "We are all shook up by the result."

    Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg said he was not embarrassed by the result, but added: "It is a new one for us to be competing against the Bus Pass Elvis Party."

    That was clearly a strong Labour seat, but it's still embarrassing to get outpolled by a joke candidate. Clegg has been a disaster for Liberal Democrats, so much so, that I think many of their gains from the past 4 elections will be wiped out next go around.

    27, Male, CA-26, DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 01:05:28 PM PDT

  •  2016: GOP donors trying to draft Jeb? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, MichaelNY

    link.

    Concerned that the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal has damaged New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s political standing and alarmed by the steady rise of Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.), prominent donors, conservative leaders and longtime operatives say they consider Bush the GOP’s brightest hope to win back the White House.

    Same article quotes a bundler who says most Romney donors would go to Jeb.

    One thing I didnt realize initially about Jeb running: it probably takes Florida off the table in the primaries. Winning Florida was key for both Romney and McCain in securing the nomination. That might scramble the GOP nomination process a bit, and actually hurt the chances of a "moderate", other than Jeb, winning the nomination.

    •  There is also the impact on a Rubio bid (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BKGyptian89, MichaelNY

      for president:

      A Bush candidacy also would pose a threat to Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.), whose donor and political circles overlap with those of the former governor. Bush blessed Rubio’s rise to the state House speakership, but their affiliation has since faded. Florida Republicans familiar with Rubio’s thinking said he is moving forward with a campaign, betting that Bush will not run.

      I think if Rubio and Jeb both got in, Jeb probably wins FL and gets more of the FL GOP donors and strategists.

      I've said before, I hope Rubio does run for president, because I think it would mean forging re-election, and Dems would have a better chance in an open seat.

    •  If Jeb ran (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jj32, DCCyclone, R30A

      He would almost certainly be the nominee. The establishment loves him and he would easily carry Florida and Texas in the primaries, the two biggest prizes in the GOP game.

      24 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 Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:07:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Bush polls surprisingly bad in these early polls (7+ / 0-)

        In some of them he even trails Paul Ryan.  CNN's most recent one had him behind Rick Perry.  He's decidedly middle of the pack, polling in the high single digits to low teens, which is incredible given his name.

        The problem with him easily carrying Florida (assuming Rubio doesn't run) is that his homestate advantage effectively negates any boost he gets from it.  In 1992 Tom Harkin crushed the field in Iowa and then never won another state.  Everyone else basically ignored Iowa.

        I'm also not so certain Bush is favored in Texas.  The last TX primary poll I saw was a year ago, but Bush was in 4th place in the state, behind Rubio, Huckabee, and even Rand Paul.

        These are astonishingly weak numbers for someone with such a famous name.

        Yeah, he could run a good campaign and improve his numbers, but so could anyone else.  But at this moment, I think Bush fatigue is a much bigger obstacle for him, even among Republicans.  GOP voters seem more interested in candidates like Ted Cruz.

        •  It's Bush name that polls badly, Jeb is unknown (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, R30A

          entity that would gain in support once folks realized he's the "good son" of HW.  Right now he's just a generic "Another Bush".  

          Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

          by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:30:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Those polls are 100% meaningless (7+ / 0-)

          They don't tell us anything.

          In a real campaign, Jeb would stand out.  He's far more polished and has far more stature than all the other discussed individuals.  He will raise more money than the rest combined.  And he has plenty enough conservative cred.  Not to mention people don't realize the Bush brand is still solid among Republicans.  Outside the GOP, the name is damaged.  But not much among Republicans.

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

          by DCCyclone on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:13:16 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not sure how polished he is at the moment... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            ...he's got a lot of rust in him and politics was much different during the time he made a name for himself.  He already made a big mistake when he backtracked on immigration.  I expect more will follow.  He looks great on paper, but we really have no idea if he can jump back into the spotlight effectively.

            "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

            by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:37:44 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  And the tea baggers would turn on him (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bythesea, TofG, MichaelNY

        The minute they realize he has a Mexican born wife, speaks fluent Spanish and has held moderate views on immigration.   This is what the GOP has come to these days.

    •  wow (6+ / 0-)

      they must not have seen all the polling showing Jeb Bush actually among the weakest nominees...both in the primary and in the general.

    •  Good for them (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Skaje, LordMike, sacman701, bythesea, MichaelNY

      Waste time on a toxic candidate.

      Jeb is like the kid who walks into high school his first and finds out everybody hated his older brother.

      All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

      by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:20:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  GOP would sell potential First Lady/First Family (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, MichaelNY

      like crazy if Jeb was the GOP nominee. Also W. Bush was terrible on a lot of things, but wasn't toxic on immigration - Jeb would have his Sister Souljah moment taking on the GOP anti-immigration bigots and the MSM would positively swoon.  

      Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

      by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 02:56:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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

        His book has him massively backsliding on the issue, so he'll have to flip again.  Of course the media will eat it up, but I think the base will throw a massive hissyfit over it which could mitigate that effect.

        "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

        by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:22:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  But the Tea Party doesn't listen to the MSM (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, bythesea, MichaelNY

        If there's one thing conservatives hate more than Obamacare, it's immigration reform. Advocate for that and watch them stay home or vote for the third party.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

        by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:43:51 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Teabaggers don't stay home for much.... (0+ / 0-)

          ...but, they would stay home for that, especially if it becomes an emphasis of the campaign.

          "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

          by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:36:43 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Little chance of winning general election... (4+ / 0-)

      ...even if Hillary doesn't run.

      Jeb's last name is toxic in presidential elections, and he seems like an establishment Republican that the GOP base would have issues with.

  •  Walker will be the nominee (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, MichaelNY

    I doubt Jeb even runs he will probably back Walker because he is the ideal establishment candidate. I can't see Jeb making it through the primaries anyways there's no excitement among conservatives for him Rand Paul or Ted Cruz is who TPers are energized for.

    •  Walker is a good bet - barring direct John Doe (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      probe connection.  

      Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

      by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 03:30:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  His time in President Pawlenty's cabinet helps (4+ / 0-)

      Oh, wait...

      All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

      by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 03:46:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You keep saying this but the differences (10+ / 0-)

        between their records speak for themselves. Pawlenty is remembered for what major policy achievements? Oh that's right some moderate compromises with the Democrats but nothing huge. Walker on the other hand has passed a conservative wishlist and busted unions, which basically heroin to Republican primary voters. He's also solidly conservative on social issues passing anti-abortion nonsense which TPaw didn't.

        How about elections? Walker will have likely won a majority three times in a light blue state, and currently is at least break-even in popularity. Pawlenty never won with more than a plurality and was unpopular by the end of his term.

        So sure you might think Walker has a boring speaking style, but he's a vastly superior pick than Pawlenty in the eyes of of Republicans. Whereas Pawlenty appealed to no one and had nothing to offer but electability if that, Walker has something for everyone among the big players in the party. I'd certainly see him as more viable than clowns like Rand Paul or Ted Cruz.

        •  I'm sure (5+ / 0-)

          the establishment types and party bigwigs will seriously consider Walker.  I don't know if he can out-conservative someone like Ted Cruz though.

          •  He busted the unions... (3+ / 0-)

            ...never compromised with Democrats or liberals, and managed to get Obama voters to vote for him despite it all.

            He has a very powerful campaign resume to bring to the base, better than Cruz, because he can also prove electability in swing states which Cruz cannot.

            "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

            by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:32:48 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Repulicans don't give a shit about campaign resume (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MetroGnome

              They care about bombast, exaggeration, buzzword patriotism.

              Cruz has second tier chances, but he's more likely to be the nominee than Walker.  He's also more likely to run.

              Walker is more likely to be president of a university in four years than President of the US.. and by a lot too.

              All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

              by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:08:19 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Walker didn't even graduate (5+ / 0-)

                from university.  Doubt he becomes president of one or has any interest in it.

                21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
                politicohen.com
                Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
                UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

                by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:23:58 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  You're ascribing the preferences of (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                LordMike, sacman701, James Allen

                the average idiot teabagger voter to the mega donors and party establishmentarians who actually determine the nominee. If they want Walker, he can become all that bullshit to the average Republican voter and being able to raise absurd amounts of money will be a huge part of it. In the immortal words of Stu Rothenberg, Ted Cruz's chances are "Not 'close to zero.' Not 'slight' or 'small.' Zero." The party would do whatever is humanly possible to prevent another Barry Goldwater of a nominee whether that's nuking him with attack ads to changing the primary structure if necessary.

                •  Rothenberg is delusional (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  gabjoh, MichaelNY

                  as if he hasn't been paying attention the past five years.

                  Cruz is second tier, but he's not significantly different to establishmentarians than Santorum, who came close to having a solid shot at the nomination.

                  He's not likely, but he's not drawing dead.

                  All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

                  by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:25:27 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Santorum had a shot at the nomination? Truly? (0+ / 0-)

                    When did he ever present a serious threat to Romney's winning it rather than just being a pesky thorn in his side? Hell they even stole his Iowa win from him! Even if he had won Ohio or Michigan he never presented a serious risk in the delegate count and even if he did Romney could have just used more of his war chest on him. His run was entertaining, but that's about it.

                    Also that Rothenberg quote was his referring to GOP chances of taking the US House in 2010 in mid 2009, which I was using somewhat as a joke given its absolutism. Regardless I would be willing to bet a hefty sum that Ted Cruz cannot win the nomination under any realistic circumstances.

                    •  Turning a few votes in Michigan, or Ohio (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      LordMike

                      would have changed the whole nature of the race, including Gingrich's delusional behavior.  In any case tough, Santorum has more in common with Walker than Cruz.  Walker is a nobody.  The Republicans have never in modern times nominating anyone so unknown/trivial/unimportant.  Walker needs to be cracking 10% at the end of this year or he's fighting the entire history of the modern Republican ("it's his turn") party.

                      The Midwestern Governor registering on fumes now who has a real chance at a truly contested nomination is Kasich.

                      All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

                      by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:53:38 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Eh... I'm not so sure about that (0+ / 0-)

                        ....wait until he actually speaks in public.  You want to talk about Walkers supposed lack of charisma?  Kasich isn't even comfortable in his own skin.

                        "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

                        by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:27:15 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

              •  Walker has plenty of bombast in him... (0+ / 0-)

                ...if you've ever seen him give speeches at party functions.  He's no Pawlenty.  He can throw out plenty of red meat.

                "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

                by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:35:36 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Walker's appeal over Cruz (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            bythesea, MichaelNY, sacman701

            is probably that he's not a grandstander but still just as conservative, even if it's in a more transactional, corporatist way. He satisfies basically everyone in the party except for a few weirdos, and he's not as easily off-putting to those outside the party, except Democrats that would never vote for him anyway. I still think he loses easily to someone like HRC and wouldn't really be favored even against someone else. But he wouldn't be a disaster like some of the others, so that's a plus.

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:15:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Walker's "boring" schtick is just that... (0+ / 0-)

          ...a schtick he uses in Wisconsin, which appreciates that kind of stuff.  Walker is a true believer, and he can get really fired up when he wants to.

          "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

          by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:24:05 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Republicans don't nominate nobodies from nowhere (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, SaoMagnifico

          Not since Alf Landon anyway.  You are trying to compare trivialities, when the issue is Walker is a nobody to the rest of country.  

          Republicans like big personalities, big state Governors, big pompous bombast, big schtick... Walker brings literally nothing to the table that Republicans have nominated for the Presidency since Landon... and that name isn't much of a historical precedent to hang a hat on.

          Walker's main path to the nomination is if the race looks so hopeless that no one with a personality (Bush, Christie, Rubio, Ryan) actually runs.  That may in fact happen, but it certainly doesn't look that way at this point.

          All the problems we face in the United States today can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian. -- Pat Paulsen

          by tommypaine on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:59:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Let him win re-election first (6+ / 0-)

      Even then, he's rather bland and colorless.

      "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

      by Paleo on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:40:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm guessing Paul Ryan actually (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      R30A

      Inoffensive to the base, inoffensive to establishment types, good speaker, has a modest fanbase, and is in party leadership. Walker is the first two, but not the last three.

      TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

      by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:48:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think you are right (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        R30A, SaoMagnifico

        if Ryan runs.

        He will probably be chair of the Ways and Means committee next year, so I dont think he will run for president.

      •  Ryan's been pissing off the teabaggers... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bythesea

        He actually made a deal with Patty Murray, and that is anathema in their world.

        "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

        by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:31:21 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Also has do-nothing congress and teabagger votes (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        these last six years that will be hung around his neck if at the top of any ticket.  He was largely ignored as the running mate and might have a false sense of security that the Boehner-led House won't be used against him.  

        Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

        by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:56:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'm confident Jeb would crush Walker & others (5+ / 0-)

      Every faction of GOPers love Jeb, and still like (and always have) Dubya.  He'll crush all comers in fundraising, and in actual campaigning he would just become increasingly appealing, because he really does have the stature and polish along with the conservative cred.

      If Jeb ran, Walker wouldn't last long.

      But Hillary would beat Jeb handily.

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

      by DCCyclone on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:10:47 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  What are your thoughts on Christie? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, SaoMagnifico, MichaelNY

        I think he made it even worse for himself when he betrayed two major people who took the fall for him (Wildstein and Kelly) and thus made them willing to sing to the US Attorney provided they get a level of legal immunity.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:16:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  But, he's innocent!!! (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, gabjoh, MichaelNY

          His own commission says he is, and that clinches it!

          "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

          by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:30:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Greedy liar. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            LordMike, SaoMagnifico, MichaelNY

            He won't save his own ass.  Nixon tried to cut loose as many liabilities as he possibly could, but it couldn't save him.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:35:28 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Forgive my loss of decorum. (5+ / 0-)

              But stating that you are exonerated by an informal investigation done by people you trust is dishonest.  It's like how, after being CONVICTED of corruption, Ted Stevens said: "I've not been convicted of anything."

              I much prefer the Edwin Edwards route for corrupt charlatans because they dispel the controversy with ironic honesty.

              “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

              by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:45:49 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Christie is toast (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, PassionateJus

          He will never be President.  His ethics issues aren't going away soon and he's handling them poorly.

          I won't say 100% he won't be the nominee, because you never know for sure that everyone else with any political strength won't pass.  We never thought in 2011 that Romney would get a free pass to the nomination, that only clowns would challenge him.  But that's what happened.  If Hillary is polling well in her own favorables and in ballot tests as she has been come 2015, and doesn't dip by that summer, maybe we'll find Christie running but Walker and so many others taking a pass?  I don't want to discount that chance too much after last time.

          But Christie will never win both the nomination and the general.

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

          by DCCyclone on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:39:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I agree that if Jeb Bush runs... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, bythesea

        He's probably the nominee. And in turn, he'll probably get flattened by Hillary Clinton.

        I wouldn't be surprised to see a third-party candidate get ~5% of the vote in a(nother) Bush vs. Clinton race, but I think we're past the era of that being much of a factor at the presidential level.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:39:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Heh, agreed (0+ / 0-)

          The optics of the race would be too easy. Eight more years of Bill Clinton, or eight more years of GWB? It'd be a landslide that would exceed even 2008.

          TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

          by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:50:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  That'd be horrible optics for Hillary, actually (0+ / 0-)

            Yes, it'd be great insofar as the economy was wonderful under Clinton and horrible under Bush, but there is a huge complication in that Hillary is female.

            Voters - when exposed to this line of thought - will see Hillary, even more than they already do, as getting to where she is because of her husband. Jeb, whether earned or not, will always be viewed as having earned his stature because he's male. Women, sadly, do not benefit from that same presumption in our society. The moment we open that can of worms, Hillary would lose ground. It's one of the reasons why attacks against Hillary on the grounds that she was a relic of the Clinton era worked so well against her.

            Given Hillary's strength against Jeb in polling, it would be better all around to simply present a positive vision for the future and how Hillary is instrumental in that achieving that vision.

            24 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 Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:07:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I think Hillary would actually (0+ / 0-)

              benefit from the comparison.  If anyone could break through the sexual barriers you imply, it's her.

              I don't think voters, at least those who are swingable, would pay that much attention to gender issues, and for those who do, the comparison to a potential revival of the Bill Clinton vs. George W. Bush administrations should be a pretty easy call.

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

              by Mike in MD on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:15:15 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Iiiiii (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gabjoh, MichaelNY, MetroGnome

              can't even begin to tell you how much I disagree with this. If people viewed Hillary this way, her approval ratings would not be so high.

              Jeb will be viewed as another spoiled, presumptuous son of an unpopular former president, and brother to an even more unpopular former president. That optic will be worse than the idea that Hillary is where she is because she is Bill Clinton's wife. And I'm not sure if that optic would even hurt her.

              TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

              by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:05:24 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The average American probably thinks (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                wwmiv, MichaelNY

                Hillary is where she is because of Bill (I mean, Sen. Hillary Rodham, D-IL as the overwhelming favorite for the Democratic nomination?  Really?) but also likes her personally and respects her and thinks she'd be a fine president.  Those aren't mutually exclusive thoughts.  Americans knew Bush got to where he was by being George Bush and not George Davidson or George Carlucci but they still chose him.

                21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
                politicohen.com
                Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
                UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

                by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:42:14 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Not seeing any excitement for Jeb (0+ / 0-)

          Browsing through the RW blogs there is no love for the Bushes or Jeb it's all about Cruz & Paul. The hate for the establishment is real and I think anyone openly in favor of immigration reform will have a very hard winning the nomination just look what happened to Rubio. I think the base is craving for a "true conservative" their not swayed by who's electable argument anymore after the Romney loss.

          •  If the left-wing blogs had their way... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingTag, MichaelNY

            Howard Dean would have been the nominee in 2004, John Edwards would have been the nominee in 2008, and we would be nominating Sen. Bernie Sanders or Sen. Elizabeth Warren in 2016.

            Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

            by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:18:24 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  To be fair (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KingofSpades, bjssp, bythesea, askew

              the GOP base is different from ours.  Our base also includes a lot of non-netroots people, mostly unions and minorities.  Their base looks pretty similar to what their base on the internet looks like except it's older.

              21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
              politicohen.com
              Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
              UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

              by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 08:43:07 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  They realize that (0+ / 0-)

                Hence they are constantly trying to stave off the Paulistas and the anti-Romneys.

                “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

                by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:04:47 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  One Huge Difference (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY

                The Democratic base includes African Americans and Hispanics who are as much anti-Republican as Pro-Democratic. As a consequence the Democratic primary has a large constituency with a vested interest in winning the general(lgbt voters can added to this group). African Americans initially favored Hillary over Obama in 2008 until he proved he was viable by winning largely white Iowa, and would provide the backup army which would defeat any insurgency by the ideological left.

                This is the number one reason why Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are not a serious threat to Hillary. They have negative appeal with minority voters(being electorally weaker than Hillary), and are on the wrong side of the party and from the wrong part of the country to rally blue-collar whites.

    •  Walker should be the favorite... (0+ / 0-)

      ...why he isn't gaining any traction is really a mystery to me.

      "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

      by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:22:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Scott Walker has a trouble named Paul Ryan (0+ / 0-)

      Like Marco Rubio has a trouble named Jeb Bush.

      Until now, in the public polling Paul Ryan is beating Scott Walker.

    •  Republicans are in 1988 (3+ / 0-)

      Or for the UK example 1992. They will be facing a tired incumbent party, but are more concerned with uniting their own factions than with trying to take advantage of that, assuming that fatigue will bring victory by default. And it dosen't at least they didn't burn bridges.

      They are looking for their Dukakis, not their Clinton.

  •  Sue Lowden needs to take a chicken to the doctor (10+ / 0-)

    She is apparently now one of those people who thinks the 17th Amendment should be repealed...because she didn't like the results of the 2010 election. Story here.

    In an interview transcript posted on the Douglas County (NV) Republican Central Committee’s page on March 27th, Lowden explains that if we repealed the 17th Amendment we could get rid of Harry Reid. In the interview, conducted last November, Lowden is asked whether she would support abolishing the 17th Amendment and she responds by saying:

    "I would absolutely support it…I don’t know why the senators wouldn’t want it shown in good faith to the American public that this would be a good idea for our country. Instead we have Harry Reid, the Harry Reid’s of our country who are there over and over again and have a tremendous amount of money to be re-elected. Yes, I think people are really fed up with bad people in government. If that’s a way to change things up in Washington, I would be all for it and do whatever we [need] to do it."

    In other words, her opinion is that democratic elections for U.S. Senator are a bad idea because the people do not choose the candidate she wants to win, they vote for Harry Reid instead.

    Ain't it a shame for incompetent Republican schmucks like Sue Lowden that when voters are allowed to choose their elected officials, they often pick Democrats?

    Lowden is running for lieutenant governor of Nevada, BTW.

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 04:54:42 PM PDT

  •  I've got to hand it to Christie... (5+ / 0-)

    He sure has some chutspah... going around preaching to everyone how relieved he is to be fully "exonerated" by a commission that he created for himself for that purpose.  It's like some bizzarro world Soviet show trial where he's declared innocent to the world.  Very few politicians would be brazen enough to try it, and only he has a chance to get away with it.  We'll see if the media eats it up like they usually do with all things Christie.

    "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

    by LordMike on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:29:26 PM PDT

    •  I agree, it's enraging. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, Avedee, bythesea, MichaelNY

      If it were an independent, accredited investigation, it would be alright of him to do this, but these were his loyalists hired on our tax dollars.

      I hope the direct and proven link to the bridgegate is finally given by Wildstein and Kelly (or by some other source) and pops his last balloon.  He will be spending media time instead trying to explain how this is not an impeachable offense.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:34:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  He won't be so relieved (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, Avedee, bythesea, MichaelNY, gabjoh

      when Kelly agrees to a deal for immunity that ends up with her relinquishing every single piece of possible evidence and answering every single question in full: http://www.nj.com/...

      Christie's lawyers will probably respond with: "Did you see the report?  Bridget Kelly has an inhuman libido that drives her crazy!  She should have gotten a hysterectomy years ago!  Her phrenological records also show she has the mental state of a sociopath!"

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:40:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The pertinent quote from her attorney: (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, bythesea, MichaelNY
        “The only credible investigation into the lane closings is being conducted by the U.S. Attorney's Office,” Critchley said. “If Ms. Kelly were provided with the appropriate procedural safeguards, she will be fully cooperative and provide truthful and complete answers to any questions asked of her by the appropriate law enforcement authorities.”

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:41:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  If it were a real Stalinist show trial (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, gabjoh, Audrid

      Wildstein and Kelly would have confessed to having been hired jointly by Hillary Clinton, Scott Walker, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz to cause the traffic jam on the bridge and to then frame Christie for it.

  •  This is RRH's question of the week (7+ / 0-)

    but I think it's an interesting one for us too.

    How have your politics changed over the last few years, if at all?

    21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
    politicohen.com
    Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
    UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

    by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:49:46 PM PDT

    •  I've become (6+ / 0-)

      more fiscally liberal on welfare policy.

      I've also become more of a liberal interventionist.

      24 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 Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 05:59:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Personally (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      redrelic17

      I'd say I'm at the same place on the spectrum I was a few years ago: establishment liberal economically, socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy.  A couple changes: first, I've realized that my support for a strong federal government means I can't support marijuana legalization at the statewide level.  Second, I've switched from opposing the auto bailouts to supporting them.  Third, I'd say I'm slightly less reflexively environmentalist than I was, although it's still an important issue to me.  Fourth, I'm more opposed to gun control.  On the whole, however, I haven't changed much, although being in college and maturing has helped me clarify my beliefs and be able to express them better.

      21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
      politicohen.com
      Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
      UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

      by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:22:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think so. (0+ / 0-)

      I've moved farther left on economic issues, and have lost most interest in social issues (particularly gay marriage). I'm more skeptical of the Democratic establishment, and feel more revulsion toward the values of the professional class. I'm more skeptical of American intentions abroad, but am nonetheless satisfied with the Obama administration's foreign policy.

      I suppose that these some of these changes are related to personal experiences in the workforce, and observations about the career paths of close friends.

      Impractical progressive Democrat.

      by redrelic17 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:22:52 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've gotten somewhat less left (0+ / 0-)

      though that may be to do with the cynical nature of people in their early 20s.  

      I agree more with the nature of compromise for the sake of holding certain voting blocs, but not for the benefit of Republicans.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:31:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Couple ways (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, Gygaxian, Jorge Harris

      I think I switched from conservatism to liberalism around three years ago, so that might count. (Yeah, I did almost a total 180.)

      Since then, I've evolved on a few issues.

      I became anti-gun (previously pro-gun) after Newtown.

      I became more anti-war (really, more anti-invasion than anything else - I think Libya was one of the most moral uses of military force in history).

      I became a lot more protectionist, but only in the sense that we need to be protectionist against certain countries whose labor force is paid significantly less than ours. Free trade works great between us and places like Europe or Japan.

      I found out how much I utterly detested the school of leftist anarchism.

      I became very much in favor of totally open borders. If you want to live here, just sign up for your social security card and have fun making a life here.

      I became less radical feminist, more liberal feminist. Some of the things radical feminists say are highly hypocritical, and I wouldn't want to live in their society.

      I really came to appreciate Obamacare. Even though I thought it didn't go nearly far enough, I think it can work pretty well - nearly as well as a single payer system.

      I'd like to think I've become more race-conscious, but I still have a lot of problems with the modern civil rights movement (read: the last couple decades of it). I think I reached that epiphany when I found out that, according to the movement, being color blind is a bad thing. Maybe I just haven't seen the light on that one yet, but right now I just can't wrap my head around it.

      TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

      by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:48:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Quite the reverse for me (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gabjoh
        I found out how much I utterly detested the school of leftist anarchism.
        It's not really as recent an epiphany for me, but coming from the other end of the spectrum, I've figured out that I utterly detest capitalism, wage slavery, authoritarianism of those who support the capitalist system. It is extreme, cruel, hurtful, damaging to society, and exploitative.

        In short, I am all that you despise.

        I am an anarchist, although I've discovered by reading dkos that most who use this term have no real working idea what it really means, and are usually completely ignorant of the history and nature of the topic.

        "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

        by ZhenRen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:02:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Between you, wwmiv, and Avenginggecko (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Le Champignon

        That makes three Texans who comment here who have moved decidedly to the left in recent years.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:11:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I left off things I've become more conservative (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, Possible Liberal

          on, because of the audience, so I wouldn't go so far as to say I've moved decidedly to the left. Maybe slightly overall.

          I'm much more personally pro-life than I used to be, but I'm also more firmly publicly pro-choice than I used to be as well (call this the old Mitt Romney position).

          I want a simpler tax code. Not a fantasy flat tax, but something
          easier for citizens to navigate.

          The IRS actually is awful, and needs to be completely reformed from the ground up. This doesn't have to do with their (completely specious Republican claims: ...) "targeting of conservatives," but rather because they've always been an odious institution. I don't want to get rid of it, but there needs to be a complete overall of the structure.

          Money in politics: after having worked compliance, I can tell you that there's no hope here at all for actual regulation. Sandra Day O'Conner once described money in politics as being like water. If you plug it in one place, it will flow elsewhere. I concur, and we just need to find ways to make that trend work for us and for society rather than against us and against society.

          There are others as well, but that's just a sampling.

          24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:48:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  A few things: (0+ / 0-)

            Assuming this can be talked about without it becoming bad:

            1. I kind of feel the same way about the pro-life/pro-choice stuff. I can't say I've done research on the ins and outs of this stuff at the theological and biological level, but I'm kind of uneasy about the procedure. Maybe it's because I just have an aversion to needles and blood that is becoming worse as I get older, or maybe it's something else. I think I remain pro-choice, and very much pro-contraception, but I question it more than I used to, even if I am still a SLR abortion person.

            2. What's so wrong with the IRS that it needs a drastic overhaul? Also, I don't see how supporting it in its current form is really a left-leaning position.

            3. As I think indicated elsewhere, I realize it's hard to enforce these things. I think it was Xenocrypt who once said, "What are you going to do, stop someone from going to Kinkos to make copies of a flier?" I get the free speech argument, although I'd say it's already regulated to some degree, even if it's not in major ways (i.e. materials allowed within 100 feet of a polling place or whatever). Still, I don't think I need to articulate why I am uncomfortable with the Koch brothers and others like them.

            With that in mind, I wonder if it's a good idea to try to offer public funds to both sides in a variety of races. I mean, the system as I believe it stands in New Jersey just exacerbates the problem with fund raising, as it matches money already given. But what if each side got, say, $40 million or whatever would be enough to give them a chance but not enough so that it would be wasted--while also allowing donations no higher than a certain amount? I'm not sure if politicians still embrace outside spending, but maybe they'll do it less.

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:02:58 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Oh yeah, on money in politics... (0+ / 0-)

            I also wonder about taxing donations. Is that even possible? I have no idea. If it is, why not simply tax any amount of spending over a certain amount by some huge percentage, like 500-1000 percent?

            Or maybe we can make the filing requirements such a gigantic, monumental pain in the ass that it becomes time consuming process and expensive as well? I mean, you know all of the recertification crap that Walker made the unions do in Wisconsin, just to make it more arduous for them? Why not try something similar for donations over a certain amount? I'm not sure if that's legally possible, but if it is, why not?

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:04:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  That's ok. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wwmiv

            It's thinking outside the box in a manner like the Third Way (but I don't mean that in a bad way here).  Here in NJ, for example, there is a very generous pension system formula created during a time of abundance a decade ago, but has become a pain on the state.  In California, the horrific jump in mortgage rates during stagflation led to the passage of Prop 13, which created and enshrined a formula of property taxes that lagged greatly behind inflation.  This, like the pension adjustments in NJ, was a quick fix with long-running problems for the state.

            Simplifying formulas in a way that allows for stability and benefit guarantees in good times and bad times is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for policy wonks.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:47:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Could you elaborate on civil rights bit? (0+ / 0-)

        Just curious to know what your problems with the movement are.

        •  They're just presumptuous (0+ / 0-)

          They assume that macroscopic problems like racial profiling can be applied to microscopic situations. The Trayvon Martin case is a prime example. There's no evidence Zimmerman was racially profiling Martin, even though that's the commonly assumed position. I'm not saying racial profiling doesn't exist, I just wish people would stop assuming that any violent acts committed against black people by non-black people are ipso-facto racially motivated.

          I also rather dislike the idea that the civil rights movement is inherently correct in all of its ideas and methods simply because it occupies the moral highground. One can believe all the wrong things for all the right reasons.

          The notion that my whiteness prevents me from understanding the movement is downright offensive to me. If I can understand orbital mechanics, I can at least imagine what it's like to be black in a place that isn't always friendly to black people.

          Also, there's the idea that black people are kept economically destitute primarily due to racism. I'm far more inclined to believe that, while racism is a significant factor, it's not the driving factor. Rather, the lack of upward mobility in America is the problem. Black people are historically poor, stemming from slavery and Jim Crow. People who are historically poor tend to remain poor in capitalist societies.

          And as mentioned, the minute I found out that being color blind was a bad thing (even itself racist, according to one person I met) was the minute I stopped identifying myself as a supporter of the movement. I don't want two Americas, one black and one white. Separate but equal is a fantasy that deserves a painful death. Together and equal is a far more deserving philosophy to follow. On this, I prefer Obama's racial philosophy.

          TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

          by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:23:21 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  very little (6+ / 0-)

      Since the financial crisis I've moved from a more laissez-faire position on bank regulation to more of a keep-it-boring position. Over the past 15-20 years I've moved somewhat to the left on economic issues. I used to think that markets were basically meritocratic, now I think that the private sector has at least as much nepotism and cronyism as the public sector does.

      For all that, 20 years ago I was center-right on economic issues and center-left on social issues. Now I'm center-center on economic issues and center-left on social issues.

      SSP poster. 44, CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

      by sacman701 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:06:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I would say I've gotten more liberal (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, betelgeux

      As my political compass would attest, I'm very socially libertarian and economic left, but probably three points to the right on both axes a few years ago.

      I credit MSNBC, Rachel Maddow but especially Chris Hayes. His show(s) in the past few years have been really illuminating to me. Plus his book is a real eye-opener.

      26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

      by HoosierD42 on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:25:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I was a GOP-hating ConservaDem... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades, Jorge Harris, gabjoh, Audrid

        ...until the Wisconsin Uprising, believe it or not. At one time, I supported right-to-work-for-less laws, flat income taxes, bans on partial-birth abortions, and capital punishment, among other conservative ideals (I support none of those now). The only reason I was a Democrat was because of George W. Bush and how incompetent he was in office.

        Nowadays, my views are to the left of most elected Democrats, except for a couple of issues, like assault weapons (I'm opposed to an assault weapons ban, but I do support huge surtaxes on assault weapons and other measures to restrict sales of assault weapons) and estate taxes (I believe that estate taxes are effectively a form of taxation without representation), where my views are to the right of most Dems, and I've come to despise the Democratic establishment nearly as much as I despise Republicans.

        •  Wow, that's hard to believe. (0+ / 0-)

          When I was in my early teens, I was opposed to SSM and somewhat opposed to abortion.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:40:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Well, I started as a Matheson-ish Dem (4+ / 0-)

      And now I'm a Rocky Anderson or Bernie Sanders Dem. I've basically gone far to the left on nearly every issue you could name. Social, economic, foreign policy, civil liberties, all of it. I've kept a certain sense of pragmatism (I voted for Matheson, after all), but my personal politics are so outside Utah's norm it's almost funny.

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

      by Gygaxian on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 07:47:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Over the last few years - not at all (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      PassionateJus, MichaelNY

      I've been a far-left socialist for about a dozen years - since my early to mid-college years.  From the time I was in high school until my first year or so of college I'd classify myself as having been basically a disinterested (didn't vote and cared little for politics) libertarian type.  Up until then I didn't see any real difference between mainstream political parties and generally saw government as an annoyance.  

      It was college that opened my eyes.  Receiving Pell Grants, government scholarships, loans and other government assistance, interacting with people of diverse backgrounds and studying various left-wing philosophers was what pushed me towards socialism.  Well, that and George W. Bush being an all-around fuck up.  

    •  Good question (0+ / 0-)

      In short, probably - became somewhat more fiscal conservative (though i always had some modest fiscal conservative streak) and somewhat more social liberal (on SSM, for example, initially i was for "civil unions" only). In the past i would be an ideal "Charles Mathias-Republican", but where are all these people now??)))

    •  think I'm about the same as about 2011 (0+ / 0-)

      just more skeptical of ideological dogmas especially on economics. As a late supreme court justice stated, the constitution wasn't meant to embody one particular economic theory.
      And more cynical generally. Less trusting of authority, perhaps.
      Otherwise see myself not far from a mainstream or traditional Dem.

      "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

      by James Allen on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:23:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Still not certain on my own political positions... (0+ / 0-)

      Hence 'Possible Liberal'.

      But, over the last few years, my political changes (if any) have been:

      Economy: No change from my belief in basic Keynesian economics.
      Income Distribution: No change from redistribution to help the least well off the most (Rawlsian maximin principle).
      Foreign Policy: Anti interventionist --> Liberal interventionist. Again, it's the maximin principle of helping the least well off the most, regardless of arbitrary national boundaries.
      Death Penalty: Anti death penalty --> Indifference on the issue.
      Abortion: Pro-choice --> Still pro-choice, but support reduction in how late abortions can be performed. As it becomes medically easier to support babies born earlier and earlier, I support moving the abortion limit in line with this.
      Environment: Very green --> Cautiously environmental.
      Marijuana: Anti legalization --> State's rights to legalize.
      Gay Marriage: Pro-gay marriage --> State's rights to legalize/ban gay marriage.
      Legitimacy: Popular consent --> Constitutional/rational consent.
      Surveillance (National Security): Anti-surveillance --> Cautiously pro-surveillance.

      So overall, I guess you could say I've shifted a bit to the right.

      •  You've moved more conservative on gay marriage (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        ???

        that'll win you a lot of friends here.

        24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:06:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  this is why we don't talk policy in the digests. (4+ / 0-)

          "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

          by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:14:13 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I'm personally for it. (0+ / 0-)

          But the 10th amendment leaves marriage up to the states. Whilst that hinders the rightful effort to legalize gay marriage everywhere, it also protects gay marriage from national attempts to ban it in states where it is legal.

          A more accurate description of my view on gay marriage would probably be 'unchanged from pro-gay marriage', whilst my views on federalism have changed.

          I also don't care so much about this 'definition of marriage' debate. To be honest, I don't care what term is given to the equal legal union between two gay people, so long as they are given the same rights as heterosexuals. If conservatives are hell bent on preserving the definition of marriage as 'between a man and a woman' so be it, as long as they still recognise the same rights for a 'married' gay couple.

          •  Incorporation bro (6+ / 0-)

            Marriage has been considered a fundamental right of privacy that pervades the bill of rights, yes? Well, incorporation from the 14th has the effect of applying those same fundamental rights to the states not just the federal government. The same constitution requires that states treat their citizens equally. That's why we're winning in federal courts.

            24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:50:06 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Pretty much, the 14th amendment (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Avedee, MichaelNY, sapelcovits

              applies against the states and supersedes the 10th amendment. SCOTUS has the right to strike down state laws banning gay marriage for the same reason it had the right to strike down state segregation and anti-interracial marriage laws.

              28, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

              by okiedem on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:06:33 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't think the 14th is as simple as that (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              BenjaminDisraeli

              My understanding of the 14th is that any laws created must be applied equally to all people, and cannot exclude certain groups. For example, interracial marriage would be unconstitutional under the 14th because it's saying that White men can marry white women, whilst African-American men cannot. Gay marriage is a bit odd, because technically speaking, in states that bans gay marriage, a gay person is still legally free to marry a person of the opposite sex, whilst it is also illegal for a heterosexual person to marry a person of the same sex. So in that sense, the law is applied equally and consistently to all people.

              I also don't think marriage is a fundamental right, because I don't believe anything is a fundamental right - Like Locke, I think rights are man-made concepts, so what laws we have are to an extent, up to the state to decide, as long as they are applied non-arbitrarily. That's why taxation (a deprivation of property - which some Libertarians say is against the 14th) is also legal in my view, because it isn't a arbitrary asset-grab; the state sets a criteria which it applies to all.

              It would take me a long time to explain my gradual shift away from the '14th ammendment view' of gay marriage to the '10th ammendment view', but that's basically what my change has been.

              But, I'm not a constitutional scholar, and there are far more educated people, like the judges you mention, who are striking down gay marriage bans with the 14th. I'm still very open to the idea that gay marriage is constitutional under the 14th, but my current level of education leads me to where I am now.

              •  I suggest reading two books by Akhil Reed Amar (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Possible Liberal, okiedem

                The first outlines what I believe is the most coherent - although unfollowed jurisprudentially - view of incorporation from a textualist and historical perspective. It's called The Bill of Rights: Creation and Reconstruction.

                The other is a recently published text on what amounts to fundamental rights in a historical perspective. It's called America's Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By.

                24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 01:25:52 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  That's not really the conservative legal (5+ / 0-)

                argument against gay marriage. The analogy with interracial marriage is more on the point than you indicate above. Gay and straight people are "equal" under the current regime in the same what that black and white people were "equal" under anti-interracial marriage laws. Under anti-interrcial marriage laws black and white people were "equal" in that they were both equally barred from marrying someone of the opposite race. Similarly, under anti-gay marriage laws straight peopel and gay people are equal in that they are both equally barred from marrying someone of the opposite sex.

                The conservative argument against gay marriage isn't that the law is equally applied. Instead, it's (1) that the framers of the 14th amendment were homophobic and that the 14th amendment should not therefore provide protection for gay people since that would violate original intent and (2) that homosexual behavior is morally outrageous and that the state has an interest in deterring it in the name of promoting morality. I'm not misrepresenting the conservative legal position on this at all. If you'd like to see a good example of this legal argument, Scalia's dissent to Lawrence v. Texas is a good place to look.

                http://www.law.cornell.edu/...

                http://equalityontrial.com/...

                28, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

                by okiedem on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:25:48 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

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

                  you mean "equally barred from marrying someone of the same sex"

                  This, by the way, really gets at the gender discrimination argument for gay marriage.

                  24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:43:13 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Thanks for the insight (0+ / 0-)

                  But I still disagree that interracial marriage and gay marriage are analogous laws. Banning interracial marriage means that marrying white people is legal for some, and not for others, whilst a gay marriage ban prevents all people from engaging in gay marriage (of course, a heterosexual person would have no reason to get a gay marriage though). Hence, an IRM ban does not follow equal application of the law, since it divides the application of law based on race, whilst a gay marriage ban does not.

                  I definitely don't share the same conservative legal opinion as Scalia. Whether I am some kind of strict constructionist...well I have no idea. I need to check out those books wwmiv recommended earlier.

                  •  The way you've framed this (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY, HoosierD42, sapelcovits

                    implies that marrying a white person is better than marrying a non-white person.

                    Here's what you said:

                    Banning interracial marriage means that marrying white people is legal for some, and not for others
                    And here's how you can reframe the gay marriage part to reflect this same logic:

                    Banning gay marriage means that marrying men is legal for some, and not for others.

                    24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:55:15 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I'm still not really following (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY, sapelcovits

                    Banning gay marriage means that marrying men is legal for some (women) and not for others (men) and vice versa. I'm not seeing the distinction between that and interracial marriage (where marrying white people is legal for some (white people) and not for others (non-white people)).

                    28, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

                    by okiedem on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:55:27 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  yes! (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      MichaelNY, sapelcovits

                      (I beat you to this point by 12 seconds!)

                      I'm less peeved by the logic error, and more peeved by the implication that marrying white is the normative good by Possible Liberal.

                      24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:57:21 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Well that's not implied, nor can it be inferred. (0+ / 0-)

                        I can't see how you could possibly make that massive illogical leap between what is essentially a description of IRM bans, and accusing me of saying that 'marrying white' is a normative good.

                        For the sake of brevity, I did not feel the need to expand on the obvious fact that if IRM bans prevent some people from marrying White people, it also prevents other people from marrying Black people, or Hispanic people, or Asian people. One example surely was enough to highlight that. The reason why I used the example of 'white marriage' was merely because of its historical significance (which I imagined would be quite clear).

                        Nowhere in my description did I make any normative or axiological statement about 'white marriage', nor can any normative or axiological statement be reasonably inferred.

                        I have been fair in my expression of my views, but I do take this accusation of racism to be ad-hominem and slanderous. I am not at all peeved with people sharing a different opinion to me (especially on something which I am still learning about), but I am very peeved that you have made such an accusation.

                  •  they are coherent in this way (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    IIRC* Virginia's law banning interracial marriage that was contested in Loving did not prevent African Americans from marrying other nonwhites, or various nonwhites from marrying each other, only from marrying whites. It was essentially aimed at preserving white racial purity, which the court found to be an impermissible gov't purpose. Likewise in many of his landmark rulings Kennedy has found discrimination against gays to be based simply upon animus against that group, and even if gays are not a suspect classification like race and so doesn't get heightened scrutiny when discriminated against,  that is still an impermissible gov't purpose even under rational basis scrutiny. If Kennedy writes a decision striking down state bans nationally, and if it happens anytime soon it will be written by him, I think that is the rationale he will use. His only hesitation would be his own feeling in agreement with yours that was expressed in Windsor, that marriage is traditionally the province of the states, and he is a staunch defender of the state's interest and power in federalism.

                    *I may be confusing cases.

                    "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

                    by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:29:08 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

              •  Your argument is non-Constitutional (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                HoosierD42, sapelcovits

                Even if you don't think marriage is a fundamental right, the Supreme Court does, and if you personally favor legal same-sex marriage, you shouldn't let some personal opposition to the concept of marriage as a fundamental right cause to to support the "right" of states to discriminate against gay couples at will. Rethink your logic.

                Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:50:57 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  To be fair, (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          no one is obliged to hold views that conform to DKE's conventional wisdom.

    •  Most of my positions (0+ / 0-)

      have basically stayed the same, but not all.

      In 2008 and 2009, I was strongly anti-gun, and wanted to see guns wiped off the face of the earth. Since then, I've realized that they do have some legitimate uses, and I've come to believe that gun regulation should be a state and local issue rather than a federal issue.

      Besides that, my views have basically stayed the same. I didn't even realize that anyone wanted to legalize marijuana until 2009 or 2010, when my conservative friend mentioned the issue to me on April 20 of the year, and assumed that I thought it should be legalized also. I quickly corrected him.

      But my time in college has largely reinforced the views that I entered college with. I'm still a leftist (but not quite socialist) on economic issues, strongly liberal on immigration, liberal on most social issues, strongly pro-environment, and I still have a strongly progressive worldview.

      The political compass scores in my signature are from January 2012. Since then, I've moved about a point to the right on both economic and social scales. However, I think that shift is more about my saying 'agree' instead of 'strongly agree' rather than my positions actually changing in any significant way.

      (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

      by ProudNewEnglander on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:52:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Campaign fin./voting, union issues, gay marriage. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sacman701

      I don't know if I've changed all that much. I'd say I'm still more or less of a communitarian capitalist. I like money and investing and I think markets are a good thing in most cases, but they aren't perfect, especially when it comes to finance. I'm much more of a floors rather than ceilings guy. I think there should be a decent standard of living and/or a chance to get ahead for those, in the words of Clinton and Gore, who "work hard and play by the rules." I'm definitely concerned about things like income inequality and think we need to redistribute income more aggressively, but for both reasons of policy and politics, it needs to be tied to work and better incentives to save.

      I find people like Matt Yglesias slightly too simplistic at times for my tastes, but he's said in the past that progressivism shouldn't be tied to more government all the time, but using it to make sure those in power aren't favored at the expense of the rest of us. (Something along those lines.) That's basically my mentality, even if it doesn't always line up on right/left lines.

      I can't say with a lot of certainty where I used to be, but...I've become much more of a supporter of gay marriage, since this seems like the one issue where there should really be no debate, only a little sympathy for the non-bigots as they are dragged into modern times. As far as campaign finance and voting, the exact way we can enforce these laws is far from clear, but we need to do something to stop the flow of money into politics, despite free speech reservations. As for voting and election stuff, if you are a supporter of making it harder to vote, you can go straight to Hell in my mind. And as far as unions go, while I think I used to be more nonchalant about their role, because I never a lot about it, but for a few reasons, I think we need them, warts and all.

      "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

      by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:58:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Probably the only thing that's changed (0+ / 0-)

      for me is immigration, which I've moved to the right on, mostly as a result of my job. (to be fair I used to be SUPER liberal on the issue and I'm still to the left of most Republicans on the issue).

      Everything else is pretty much the same for me though, very much a Third Way type :)

      28, NE-2 (resident), IL-9 (part-timer), SD-AL (raised); SSP and DKE lurker since 2007

      by JDJase on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:51:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I was a centrist (0+ / 0-)

      With a slight center-right tilt, and swung to the progressive left circa 2010-2011 because of how brutally asinine the GOP became, then swung slightly further to the right once I became turned off by the front-pager attitudes. Now I consider myself to be at the middle of the Democratic road, so to say.

      Gay suburbanite in NJ-11

      by interstate73 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:58:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Over the last few years (0+ / 0-)

      not much at all really except far more angry at income inequality and the lack of fair taxes that the rich (don't) pay in this country.

      The big changes for me I guess were in the late 90's/ early 00's when I became much more progressive on economic matters. When I first started getting involved in politics in 1992 I actually was a member of the DLC! Of course it was all the rage in the Clinton years. And I use to be such a fan of Tony Blair and his reforms of the Labour Party.

      I've always been interested in foreign policy and a bit of a nerd when it comes to things such as international institutions and alliances (which is good since now I'm getting a master's degree in it). And I've always cared about veteran's issues. I was far more excited by John Kerry than I was for Obama, which is completely not the norm I know. I was also really excited by Bill Richardson early on in 2007-08, but he flamed out quickly. Then I volunteered for Hilary and then, begrudgingly, Obama.

      I'm actually remarkably pretty happy with Obama's Presidency, all things considered. I didn't think that he would have been as powerful a leader as he has been and I think he has actually accomplished quite a lot from a historical standpoint. I always thought of him as being a moderate and I haven't been disappointed, even though I consider myself more to the left than he.

      P.S. I'm currently reading current US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power's book, "A Problem From Hell: America in the Age of Genocide". It's powerful and I recommend it. It is actually really amazing that she was appointed the position after writing the book which is highly critical of US foreign policy.

      •  And Locally I'm Different Than Nationally (0+ / 0-)

        I've always supported far more progressive candidates for local office than I have for President and often for statewide elected positions such as governors and senators. I guess I'm pragmatic when it comes to those offices.

        That's why I've volunteered for candidates such as Al Gore and John Kerry for president while also volunteering for far more progressive candidates for mayor and city council.

        In 1999 I even walked precincts in San Francisco for Tom Ammiano for Mayor, over former Assembly Speaker and incumbent Mayor Willie Brown, to the consternation of all my friends in the California Young Democrats!

        http://en.wikipedia.org/...
         

    •  My personal politics haven't changed (0+ / 0-)

      in the last few years. The only thing that's changed is a greater understanding, thanks to SSP, of feints toward the right by Representatives of districts who need to do that for electoral reasons.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:42:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've become less ideological and more partisan (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:39:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Used to be a standard liberal Democrat (0+ / 0-)

      and now I've moved to the left, and a lot less trusting of the government. Not a terribly huge difference in terms of the issues commonly discussed (except somewhat more pro-gun, though I do think the entire debate is a distraction) but very much in terms of tactics and long-term goals.

      "Pillows, but no sleep / Feathers, but no birds." | Pro-transit young black urban progressive (not liberal) | SSP/DKE | -9, -7.79 | NJ-05 | Yard signs don't vote. | $15 and a union!

      by gabjoh on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:06:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've become a lot more politically aware. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      I've gone from a run-of-the-mill Dem voter with mild interest in some social issues and not much else to a better-informed, more passionate person. I've shifted to the left, in large part by becoming more interested in economic and social issues that I wasn't engaged in before.

      24-year old gay environmentalist. -7.88, -7.69. MD-06.

      by Stephen N on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:19:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've moved left through adult life (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Audrid, MichaelNY, KingofSpades

      I've mentioned here at random times that I was once actually an active College Republican, volunteered for Dole in the '88 Iowa caucuses.

      I became a Democrat when I was 21, and have been ever since, but also have moved left in the years since.  I'm more pro-union and more ambivalent on trade, after earlier in adulthood having been more ambivalent on unions and more strongly pro-trade deals.  I'm definitely more populist liberal overall on economics, although that doesn't translate to any fundamental change in my always-Keynesian views...just a difference in emphasis.  And I'm more strongly pro-choice, although that, too, is more emphasis than any fundamental change.

      I was always pro-gay rights, including pro-gay marriage, dating back to when gay marriage support probably polled in the teens nationally.  Gay marriage seemed like a pipe dream back then.  (Note I am straight.)

      The biggest thing for me is I've become more hostile toward Republicans and conservatives with age.  They were really bad in the Clinton years with the disgusting conspiracy theories leading right up to impeachment.  But that this same nonsense, adding racism and removing impeachment, has resumed in the Obama years has reinforced to me the fundamental moral repugnance of the right.

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

      by DCCyclone on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:33:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I've definitely moved to the left on racial (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, Skaje

      politics. A big part of that is probably living in Japan and for the first time actually thinking about what it means to be a racial minority.

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

      by sapelcovits on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:40:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Fico defeated in Slovak presidential run-offs (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SaoMagnifico, ChadmanFL, MichaelNY

    This was a bit of a surprise, because Prime Minister Fico's nominally social-democratic SMER party has been all-dominant in Slovak politics in recent years, so when he decided to run for President it seemed a safe bet he would win the race.

    Up until just a little over a month ago, ahead of the first round, polls had still shown Fico crushing his divided center-right opposition and cruising to a victory.

    But here we are. The Slovak Sme website lists the results: 59.4% for Andrej Kiska to 40.6% for Fico.

    It was already clear that Fico was in trouble after he received a very disappointing 28% of the vote in the first round, though. Especially because he had two center-right opposition candidates at his heels (Kiska, who has now won, at 24%; and Procházka, an independent candidate with a Christian-Democratic background, at 21%); and a further two center-right candidates in fourth and fifth place (Kňažko, an independent liberal, at 13%, and Bárdos, the Hungarian minority candidate, at 5%).

    Fico enjoys the support of social-democratic and labour parties across the EU, since his party is a part of their group in the European Parliament, but West-European definitions of left and right can't be transferred to Slovak politics all that easily. Fico has a bit of a nationalist and authoritarian streak.

    In a way, Fico continues the tradition of Vladimir Meciar, the populist nationalist who controversially ruled the country in the 1990s. At least that's what Slovak liberals will tell you, who suffered under Meciar then and disdain Fico now. In truth though, Fico doesn't seem anywhere as bad, and at least he seems to have replaced the Slovak center-right's market fetishism with moderately anti-austerity economic policies. But culturally, for sure, he is no progressive.

    I know hardly anything about the winner, Kiska, who has never served in any political office. In a way, this election seems to have been more of a referendum on the Fico era, which has been tainted by a corruption scandal. That scandal caused all the more resentment because Fico partly got in power in the first place because the previous center-right government had collapsed amidst a grotesque corruption scandal.

    •  Let me cross-post some things I posted on Reddit (0+ / 0-)

      Turnout in the first round was very low, just 43%, and not much higher now, 50%. In truth, it wasn't any higher in 2004 or 2009 though (but much higher in 1999).

      BBC News reported: Slovak tycoon Andrej Kiska wins presidency

      Slovak tycoon Andrej Kiska has won the country's presidential election, despite having no previous political experience.

      Mr Kiska, standing for office for the first time, defeated current Prime Minister Robert Fico in the second round of voting. [..] His victory stopped Mr Fico's social democrats from gaining control of both the presidency and parliament. [..]

      Mr Fico ended his campaign by wooing voters with tales of his traditional Catholic upbringing in an attempt to appeal to Slovakia's majority Catholic population. He portrayed Kiska as a scientologist, a claim the tycoon denies.

      Mr Fico has been in office since the 2012 elections, which saw a party securing an absolute majority in the Slovak parliament for the first time since independence. [..]

      Mr Kiska capitalised on his image as a newcomer untainted by allegations of corruption that have ravaged Slovakia's right-wing. With no communist past, he is seen as a skilled businessman. He says he wants to fight corruption and create a more efficient government.

      That Sme page also has results by region (kraj) and if you click on the + signs in front of those, you get more detailed results by electoral district.

      In the capital city Bratislava, Kiska received no less than 74% of the vote to just 26% for Fico. In the country's second biggest city, Kosice, it was 70% to 30%, and some of the other larger towns (eg Presov, Poprad, Banska Bystrica) also voted by more than 60% for Kiska.

      Fico is strongest in poor, rural areas such as those in the far east of the country.

      Zilina, the city that was once a bulwark of Vladimir Meciar and the more radical (and loathsome) nationalist Slota, was relatively sanguine about this contest (51% vs 49%). So were Prievidza and Nitra, here Meciar also used to get a lot of votes.

      The website of the Central Election Commission has summary second round results in English, and will presumably have regional breakdowns up in English sooner or later as well; they have a lot of tables and maps for the first round results, though they're listed rather drably.

      Sme, meanwhile, has positively awesome maps for the first round results. The top one, with the bubbles, does a good job of highlighting the concentration of votes. But check out the cartograms below as well, which provide another view of where a certain candidate's votes were, by twisting and bending electoral districts into sizes proportional to the number of votes the candidate got (with the colour indicating the percentage he got). And those are available for the first round results of the previous three presidential elections as well!

      A more traditional map of this year's first round results, and a bit of nice discussion, could be found at Reddits "MapPorn" subreddit.

    •  Hard to think of this... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      As a substantial turn rightward for Slovakia, considering all the extenuating circumstances at play -- but it will be interesting to see whether this result slakes Slovakians' thirst for a non-SMER alternative in government, or whether it represents the beginning of an electoral backlash against the government.

      Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

      by SaoMagnifico on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 06:31:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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

        It also seems like Fico's surprise defeat was in part driven by a fear that he would use the office to create even more centralized SMER power. He'd apparently floated some ideas about making the President's office more powerful, which may have scared some people who are wary about too much concentration of power into voting. And that may be a situational motivation that doesn't carry over into other elections.

        Still, a surprise defeat of this size doesn't happen if people aren't generally dissatisfied with the party in power, I imagine. We'll find out soon enough: there are European elections in May, so that will be another test for the government party's popularity.

    •  So I guess that means... (7+ / 0-)

      his Fico score wasn't high enough?

      (ducks tomatoes)

  •  MD Healthcare Exchange Disaster Fallout... (5+ / 0-)

    The botched health care exchange in Maryland has political fallout for some high profile people there. From O'Malley who has presidential ambitions to Lt Gov. Anthony Brown who's running for Governor. The rollout of the exchange raises questions about Brown's management skills and competency in running things but I think he'll be fine just a couple bumps in the road for him. The one I think this hurts the most is O'Malley whose national ambitions hurt and most likely would not make the cut for Hillary VP shortlist.

  •  UAW membership up in 2013 (7+ / 0-)

    This is both related to national Democratic efforts, but more specifically Michigan Democratic politics.  Anyway, UAW membership was up in 2013.  It was a modest 2% increase, but it's the union's fourth consecutive year of growth in an environment which has included RTW being passed in Michigan and the union's defeat in Tennessee.  In other words, the demise of the UAW has been greatly exaggerated.  

    They say the gains come partly from negotiation gaurantees back in 2011.  They also say that though news has focused on their defeats in organizing assembly plants in the South, a part of the increase comes from organizing auto part suppliers in the South.

    Unless or until the Koch Bros. and ilk are pushed back beyond the gate, we still very much need the organizational coup that something like the UAW can provide.

    •  Their southern additions: (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, gabjoh, Gygaxian
      The UAW has, however, had success in organizing southern vehicle assemblers and suppliers, including Navistar’s IC Bus plant in Tulsa, Okla., Flex-n-Gate in Arlington, Texas, and Faurecia in Louisville, Ky. The UAW also organized thousands of new members in gaming at casinos in Ohio and Las Vegas.
      Well, Kentuky is not RTW, so that doesn't count.

      And yes, I do believe the UAW represents card dealers in casinos.  One time I was in Atlantic City, the dealers in the Trump Taj Mahal were on the boardwalk picketing (to which I gave the thumbs up as I passed).  I also saw some UAW-funded billboards advertising the plight of the dealers.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:01:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Huh? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, MichaelNY

        What do you mean by "so that doesn't count."  And, yes, the UAW represents employees in a wide swath of industries, in fact, for many years now.  I didn't mention is because I thought people knew this.

        •  Well, I meant (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          that it's not that big of a feat in KY as it is in OK and TX.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:57:22 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I was spending the night (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, gabjoh

            working on additions to my Masters nonresearch thesis so my mind here wasn't fully turned on.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:00:16 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  I was bringing up the card dealing union (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          because it mentioned that they were expanding in casinos and I was going into what union they cover there despite being the United Automobile Workers.  Not everyone lives in a state where the UAW is prominent in the political scene.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:05:35 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  GOP taking Senate wouldn't be the end of the world (0+ / 0-)

    Not trying to be defeatist at all but let's say we lose 6 or 7 seats in November and the GOP ends up with 51-52 seats we'd only need two or three seats to take it back. We already have two easy pickups going into 2016 (WI, IL) and (PA, NH, OH, FL) all potential pickups. Just by looking at whats happened in the House we know a GOP Senate would try to pass some crazy things especially with Cruz & Paul positioning for Pres runs they will be trying all kinds of crazy bills only helping us in 2016. Of course a good November this year and we have a shot at a supermajority in 2016 in a good year.

    •  And then (after 2016) (0+ / 0-)

      - Republicans will have plenty of opportunities in 2018. 2012 was a very good year for Democrats as fas as Senate elections are concerned..

      •  Tentative 2018 competitive races (4+ / 0-)

        Arizona: Lean/Likely R
        Florida: Tossup (I think Nelson retires)
        Indiana: Tossup
        Missouri: Tossup
        Montana: Tossup
        Nevada: Tossup
        North Dakota: Tossup
        Ohio: Lean/Likely D
        Texas: Likely R (only because it's Ted Cruz)
        Virginia: Lean/Likely D
        Wisconsin: Lean/Likely D

        So 5 Dem held seats in serious jeopardy and 1 GOP held seat in serious jeopardy.  Not a great map by any means especially with a Dem in the WH but we should have incumbency benefits (none of our vulnerable senators are old except Nelson)

        21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
        politicohen.com
        Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
        UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

        by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:04:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Very hard to say (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JacobNC, LordMike, itskevin, MichaelNY

          For all we know, Heitkamp could become as popular as Byron Dorgan.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:08:17 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Meh (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, Avedee, pademocrat

          By 2018, NV won't even be a contest. Heller barely won in 2012, and that was against an uber-flawed opponent. In four years, NV will be significantly bluer than it is now.

          I'd also say Texas is a complete unknown by then. No telling how fast the state turns blue. Could be a tossup, could be safe-R, and anywhere in between. Hell, Cruz might've pissed off so many people by then that it starts with the D favored, though I think that's unlikely as our Texas bench is terribly understocked right now. (Maybe Wendy Davis will go for it?)

          There's just too much we don't know about 2018. I'm barely comfortable talking about 2016, let alone something happening two midterms from now.

          TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

          by Le Champignon on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:40:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  2018 means lower minority turnout (6+ / 0-)

            So it actually will probably look a lot like 2012 in terms of demographics (midterms tend to reflect the presidential 6 years prior, IIRC).

            21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
            politicohen.com
            Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal, not progressive. For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.
            UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city.

            by jncca on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:02:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  If Cruz makes a total ass of himself by 2018 (0+ / 0-)

            he could be vulnerable, but that's unlikely.  He would have to do something or say something that makes people real uneasy with him there to relax the normally rigid voting practices.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:07:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I'll agree with NV. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            pademocrat, betelgeux, WisJohn

            of course it's 6 years away so Heller could still save the planet from an asteroid and become president but Heller's margin almost tied Romney in the state. Heller didn't win that race Berkley lost it.

            D in FL at the SSP.

            by Avedee on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:18:10 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Exactly what i meant (0+ / 0-)

          Republicans will have almost no defence in 2018 - pure offence..

          •  The Republicans' offense in 2018 includes (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Avenginggecko

            what, exactly? California? Connecticut? Maryland?

            Sure, they've got Ohio and Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, but most of their offense is in light blue to blue states. If the environment is bad for us, that might prove challenging, but we're going to head in to those states with incumbents that are non-controversial.

            We also might head in with a big to really big majority, depending on how this cycle goes and how 2016 goes, so even a piss poor cycle isn't the end of the world.

            "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

            by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:07:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  What about (0+ / 0-)

              North Dakota, Indiana, Missouri and Montana?

              McCaskill and Donnelly got away with terrible opponents and presidential turnout in 2012, whilst Tester and Heitkamp scraped victories in increasingly conservative states. In a neutral year, all of these will be competitive.

              •  Oh, definitely. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Possible Liberal

                I'm not saying these guys will be on easy street, but look at the list of states that have seats up.

                Right now, I'd say:

                1. Safely Democratic: CA, CT, DE, HI, MD, ME, MN, NJ, NM, NY, RI, VT, WA.

                2. Safely Republican: MS, NE, TN, UT, WY

                3. Question Marks: TX and WV

                If we see something positive in 2014 and/or 2016, I wouldn't be surprised TX to be a big target. If Manchin doesn't surprise us and switch parties (not saying he will, only that some speculate) or WV Dems stay strong, he's probably fine. But with AR and WV, I never know what to think.

                The others are FL, IN, MI, MO, MT, NV, ND, OH, PA, VA, and WI. I thought about putting MI, FL, and PA in the safely Democratic column, but I didn't. You could and you wouldn't be that far off, especially if someone like Nelson runs again in Florida. Other than that, Obama won all of those states twice, except for IN, which he won once, and ND, MO and MT, which he came kind of close in in 2008. But we hold all of those seats now, which gives us a big advantage. I don't think our problems in a state like Missouri are the same as they might be in AR, and if McCaskill is smart, which she is, she'll start working now to do what she can to improve her state's party structure. Same goes for Donnelley in Indiana.

                I'm fairly confident that people like Brown in Ohio and Baldwin in Wisconsin can fight strongly, so really, we're down to four seats that might give us problems, based on the lean of the state. That's really not the end of the world, considering we have lots of seats we don't need to worry about and we currently hold those seats and, if I had to bet, would say we'll run with incumbents. Plus, there's Heller and McCain or whomever replaces him. I'd say it's better to be Heitkamp in ND or Tester in MT than Heller in NV.

                "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

                by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:19:24 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Answer (though not my) is below (0+ / 0-)

              I can only agree with it..

          •  2018 (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            itskevin

            Much will depend on the party ID of POTUS. If it happens to be Hillary Clinton or anybody other than a Republican then Democrats will have a challenging cycle with that map.

            "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:31:09 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  2002, 1998, etc didn't happen? /nt (0+ / 0-)

              TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

              by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:48:12 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Impeachment and 9/11 happened (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, Darth Jeff, jncca, itskevin

                "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:59:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Indeed it did (0+ / 0-)

                  So what'll happen before 2018? Tea Party as a third party? I could see it happening.

                  TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

                  by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:10:58 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

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

                    Anything is possible. But the fundamentals are what they are.

                    "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:12:14 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Honestly a billion things could happen (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      MichaelNY

                      I don't think there's really any way to make any sort of reasonably accurate prediction of competitive seats in 2018 right now.

                      Think about it this way, at this time in 2006 could anyone have really forecast how 2010 would turn out? Sure, you could make some sweeping guesses like "Big Dem gains" or "Big GOP gains," but I think anyone making a seat by seat prediction would have failed miserably. Same goes for predicting how 2012 would turn out in late March of 2008. Hell, 2014's hard enough to predict and that's only months away.

                      Contributing Editor, Daily Kos Elections. 24, male, CA-18 (home and voting there), LA-02 (resident).

                      by Jeff Singer on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:28:31 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I don't disagree (3+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Darth Jeff, MichaelNY, jncca

                        But the historical precedent is quite clear. It isn't exactly a shot in the dark to suggest the party that doesn't hold the presidency is likely to get a boost in a midterm election. I'm saying nothing more than that.

                        "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:36:58 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

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

                          TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

                          by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:48:17 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  That's a great comic but... (4+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY, Stephen Wolf, jncca, Audrid

                            When evaluating "This event is likely/ unlikely because of history," it's always important to look at the precedent and decide how it applies.

                            Sometimes it's a coincidence ("Mark Warner can never be President because we've never had a president named Mark.") Sometimes it's because conditions have dramatically changed ("The GOP won't win the West Virginia Senate seat because they haven't won one since Ike was president"). Sometimes it's because of less dramatic but still clear change ("Hillary can't win because we've never elected a woman president").

                            In the case of midterm losses, we're talking about an event that has a clear cause that likely still applies. Presidents tend to lose seats because they tend not to be popular after two years. There's no guarantee it'll happen in 2014 or 2018. But looking at history and politics, it's pretty clear why the president's party usually loses seats, and it seems like a precedent we should still understand and take seriously even while acknowledging it's not a prophecy.

                            Contributing Editor, Daily Kos Elections. 24, male, CA-18 (home and voting there), LA-02 (resident).

                            by Jeff Singer on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:04:34 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                        •  You're absolutely right (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY

                          Yeah, 1998/2002 are exceptions, but it took some pretty unusual events to cause them. Of course it's possible a Pres could be popular enough to make gains. But 1938, 1942, 1946, 1950, 1954, 1958, 1962, 1966, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990, 1994, 2006, and 2010 suggest that that kind of election would be a rarity.

                          Contributing Editor, Daily Kos Elections. 24, male, CA-18 (home and voting there), LA-02 (resident).

                          by Jeff Singer on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:49:41 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

        •  Donnelly is no Evan Bayh (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          But I think he fits the state well and if Republicans don't shape up by then (as I strongly suspect they won't), I imagine he'll be well-situated in 2018. But I'd be a little scared if Susan Brooks ran.

          26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

          by HoosierD42 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:38:39 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  IA, IN, MO, NC, AZ are other pickup opportunities (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gygaxian

      Iowa would probably require a Grassley retirement for that seat to be in play, Indiana and Missouri are Likely R with a strong Democratic candidate, and North Carolina could also be competitive as well. Arizona could be competitive as well, as the Tea Party may try to primary McCain out of office if he runs for re-election.

      Republicans appear to have only one pickup opportunity in 2016, and that's in Nevada (against Harry Reid).

  •  CLT: Interesting article on Patrick Cannon (6+ / 0-)

    http://www.newsobserver.com/...

    Apparently, there were a lot of people behind-the-scenes that knew about Cannon's corruption for years before he ran for mayor.  Former mayors Anthony Foxx and Harvey Gantt knew, city council members knew, prominent Democrats knew, and yet no one could stop him.  The FBI investigation into Cannon had been going on for several years before he ran for mayor, too.

    This reminds me of how so many people knew about Bob Filner's creepy sexual harassment before he ran for mayor.  Note to Democrats:  if there are any major cities with open seats for mayor this year, please vet your candidates.

    •  At least there's no special election (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      And yes, do much better from now on.  This is irritating.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:53:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Indiana Legislature- Long open to redistricting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, HoosierD42

    reform in the 2015 session. He had previously blocked any reform. Speaker Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis) had been a big proponent, and it passed with strong bi-partisan support to create an independent commission. I have long thought Long's opposition was personal- Ft. Wayne is heavily gerrymandered, and Long could fear that he would be placed in a district with another Republican, or in a likely strong Dem seat that an independent commission would create.

    I have been on a long road trip in southern New England and New York, so that is the reason for the lack of posting in the last week and a half. I will have to update my list of congressional districts I have been to. And a question- what is up with the drivers in Connecticut? They make the ones in Massachusetts look like driver's ed instructors.

    http://howeypolitics.com/...

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:30:50 AM PDT

    •  I will admit that Connecticut drivers, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike

      in general, are bad.

      But Massachusetts drivers are undoubtedly worse. On your road trip, did you drive through the Boston suburbs, or through Boston itself? If not, then you haven't seen just how bad Massachusetts drivers are.

      I could list several incidents of insane driving that I have witnessed, in both states. I'm sure Massachusetts drivers' craziness can partly explain why there is always traffic in Massachusetts whenever I drive east of Worcester.

      (-8.38, -4.72), CT-02 (home), ME-01 (college) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." -Spock

      by ProudNewEnglander on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:01:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  MA drivers are horrible... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades

        ...even outside of Boston where it isn't tight at all, they just pull out/turn right in front of you without any warning whatsoever.  Not sure what the reason is to act like an idiot on wde open rural roads.

        "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

        by LordMike on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:13:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's how the "Masshole" pejorative was born. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, betelgeux

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:41:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I suspect (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            LordMike

            There may be other reasons some people in New England are given to contumely regarding Massachusetts.  I imagine the dynamic is similar to California in the West.

            Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

            by benamery21 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:38:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Senate Control: I spoke with an SMP official (5+ / 0-)

    And it doesn't look good. Here's what they think so far:

    Landrieu and Begich will pull through.

    Pryor is probably done and Hagan has less than a 50/50 shot.

    Here's what concerns me: the person said they are increasingly worries about Michigan, according to polling, and it's "going to be tough for Peters."  How can that be?

    Ugh.

    28, gay male, partnered and living in Indianapolis (IN-7). Raising money for the most important social movement in Indiana in generations -- Freedom Indiana. www.freedomindiana.org. We will defeat HJR-6!

    by IndyLiberal on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:05:41 AM PDT

    •  What's SMP? /nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, MichaelNY

      TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

      by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:35:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm not sure I understand (0+ / 0-)

      Generally it's thought that the first four seats to go will be SD, WV, MT and AR, and that to maintain control we need to keep two out of LA, AK and NC, and it sounds like they're saying that will happen, so that would look okay for maintaining control, unless both MI and one other one flip also.  

      Also, not to make a "skewed polls" argument, but are they working from private polls or public polls in Michigan? I only ask because with some of the Michigan public pollsters, you're better off asking that octopus that picks World Cup games.  

    •  Not to call you out, but (4+ / 0-)

      is this person an insider? If so, that might be concerning, but I'd also remember that we heard all sorts of insiderish worries about Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania in 2012, among other things, and nothing came of it.

      Specifically, Michigan's a reasonably blue state, Peters is far from controversial, and TLL looks to be wildly incompetent as a candidate, even if she has Koch money backing her. More importantly, the DSCC isn't stupid and won't be caught napping. Same goes for Iowa and Colorado.

      "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

      by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:15:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  As a MI resident (and, of course, voter) (11+ / 0-)

      I'm not ready to worry about Peters yet. He's been taking a lot of fire from the likes of AFP and yet the worst polls (mostly from the not-so-great local pollsters) show him down only a handful of points. Land is, as far as I've seen, nowhere near 50%. Lots of undecideds. It doesn't help her that the AFP ads have been getting lambasted by the media for their inaccuracies and omissions, with even the decidedly not-left-leaning Detroit News getting in on the act. And her first real media event was apparently a disaster. She's never had to run a real, competitive campaign before, and it's starting to show. (Yes, I know she ran statewide for SoS twice and won both times, but that wasn't nearly as high profile as a US Senate seat.)

      Peters has been traveling the state and is just now starting to go on the air. Anyone who expected him to be romping this early in the year just set their expectations too high. If we get to September and it's still looking like a toss up, then I'll start to get nervous.

      •  I'm skeptical about treating MI Sen as competitive (6+ / 0-)

        As stated many times, the pollsters in this race were the same pollsters showing Romney competitive or even ahead. MI is safe, and I suspect it'll be a blowout of around 10%. By all means let's not get caught napping here, but seriously, Peters would have to be especially weak and Land especially strong to even make this a tossup. The opposite appears to be the case.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

        by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:31:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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

          Short of scandal, Republicans would have had to have put up a higher quality canddate than Land to make this truly competitive.  What you're essentially seeing in the polls at the moment is Dem support and then Republican support + right-leaning indy support.  

          Land has very little room to grow, from here, and this is with the millions of dollars of money dropped in this race by outside groups since the fall.  

          As for polling, even aside from the crappy pollsters, here, it seems that Dem-leaning indies seem to coalesce latter than they wouldn't in traditionally bluer states for whatever reason.  This may explain why pollsters tend to get the GOP number close to right in state-wide elections, but underestimate Dem numbers upward of five percentage points.  An example of this was the gubernatorial election of 2006 where even in late October/early November a lot of the polls ad Devos in the lower 40's and Granholm at around 50%.  Ultimately, they pretty much nailed DeVos' number (43%), but where of by Granholm five or six points.

          To sum it all up, just the general lean and demographics of  the state tell you that Dems in Michigan have a much higher ceiling.  2010 was a kiind of wacky year.  Between, the Michigan-specific Granholm fatigue - which would have been enough by itself to cost Dems the governor's office - and the general Red Wave that swept the country, itwas a perfect storm.  I don't see how they create that even nationally, let alone in Michigan, though.

          If whenever the Dems get up on television in a big way to match what's been pretty much a one-sided war as of late we start seeing the race remain close, I think then I'll get worried.

      •  Also (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, SaoMagnifico, betelgeux

        People underestimate Peters at their peril. Even I thought he was a goner in 2010 given the makeup of his district at the time, and yet he managed to hang on even as 2 other MI districts went red. And then in 2012, all I kept hearing was that he would have a tough time in the MI-14 primary because he was the "suburban white guy" who wouldn't/couldn't get support in the Detroit portion of the new district, but he ended up winning the primary pretty handily.

    •  That's not so bad (3+ / 0-)

      If they are finding Begich and Landrieu in decent position and are worried about Peters, then I think that's okay for now.

      Just because I think MI is a Dem leaning state, and Peters is a  good candidate, who will probably win when all is said and done.

      Hagan at less than 50/50 is disappointing, but I'm still not impressed with the GOP field. There is an excellent chance for a Akin type candidate here.

      •  Yeah, the GOP field is pretty flawed (0+ / 0-)

        over in NC.

        I wonder if the SMP is seeing some promising numbers in KY and/or GA and are keeping it under wraps for now.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:48:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I think the news on Alaska and Louisiana... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bythesea, LordMike

        Is a lot more striking than the news on Michigan.

        We know the dark-money expenditures lit a fire under Democrats' collective asses in Michigan; it stands to reason that race is on their minds as they figure out how it fits into their Senate picture. I wouldn't take away from it that we're somehow not favored in a reliably blue state where we have a better candidate than the Republicans managed to scrounge up.

        But if Senate Majority PAC is feeling confident about Alaska and Louisiana, that's really good news. And while they might be understandably bearish on North Carolina right now, considering Sen. Hagan's poor approvals, the influx of dark-money groups, and the Tar Heel State's tendency against reelecting its senators, they could be breathing a deep sigh of relief if and when Republicans nominate a candidate who is DOA in the general election and/or Tim D'Annunzio peels off a few percent from the Tea Party voting bloc in three-way polling of the race.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:05:02 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Would Brannon and Tim D'Annunzio make Hagan (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, SaoMagnifico

          look sort of like Cuomo during the 2010 governor's debate, where he basically looked like the only adult on stage? I mean, if you've got two clowns working to stomp each other and you, and you're a reasonable, respectable person, how do you not look like that? I could see Hagan doing really well through some combination of Republicans staying home and her getting a bunch of center-right voters that do show up and won't vote for either of them.

          I'd like to hear about KY, GA, and WV, the last one in particular. It's still very early, and I refuse to call it simply because WV hates Obama.

          "[Buffett] would much rather be idolized by porn stars and college students and prisoners [trying to turn around their lives] than by a bunch of rich businessmen [angry over his attacks on their plutocratic mentality]--The Snowball

          by bjssp on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:20:15 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  The actions of Peters on the campaign... (0+ / 0-)

      ...suggests that they are worried about it, too.  We haven't gotten any good polling from the state, so it's impossible to know.  I think the biggest worry is going to be turnout.  Labor is doing absolutely nothing to counter RTW, and Snyder's beating up on Detroit is an effective "Southern Strategy" for him to deflect from his faults.  There isn't much to motivate Dem voters at the moment and Land is trying her best to sneak through without taking any controversial stands, like Snyder did a few years earlier.

      The good news is that Peters is working the campaign hard and Land's weaknesses haven't been fully exposed, yet.  I do think it will be close, though, mostly 'cos turnout is going to suck for us.

      "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

      by LordMike on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:21:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A minimum wage increase will be on the ballot (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike, MetroGnome

        so I hope that drives Dem turnout.

      •  Peters should win in any scenario I can envisage (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike, MetroGnome

        Compare it to Pennsylvania in 2010 for similar candidate strength on each side. Michigan is more Democratic so that should cover the difference even in a worse case scenario nationwide.

        "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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:37:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Detroit (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike, sacman701

        Snyder's actually trying to get votes out of Detroit; he's done the opposite of beating up on it, and I say that as someone opposed to his terrible expansion of the EM law.  Whatever strategy he has in Detroit, I can assure you it's about as far from a Souther Strategy as you can get.

        Turnout will not suck for us in the least, and I'll wait to remind you come November.  In even Republican polls, they are finding 60% of those polled saying Snyder is out of touch.  I don't see how you could describe Snyder as devisive as he's been - and he has - and then think that no one is energized or mad as hell.  The state Dem party has already contacted the million voters who sat out 2010 more than once.  

        There is no way in hell that Dem turnout is even anywhere close to where it was in 2010.  You don't pass RTW, steal from seniors and public schools to give to big business, tighten abortion restrictions, take over cities and school districts left and right, fight equality at every turn...in a blue state, and then predict that turnout is going to suck.

        If you're this skeptical about Michigan, I'd hate to see what you think of Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

        •  How does bankrupting your city... (0+ / 0-)

          ...get votes out of it, especially when everything will get gutted?  

          "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

          by LordMike on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:58:45 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You tell me (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            I didn't say he was a political genius. lol  All I'm saying is that this man has done everything in his power to not make this racial, something, quite frankly, I can't imagine another Republican in this state not doing.  He has sought at every turn to try and get projects for the city, even against the wishes of the Republican legislature where "Detroit" is basically code-word for "black."

            I have completely different views about how to help Detroit.  I did not believe the emergency manager or bankruptcy were even a second or third option for helping the city, let alone the first.  But, unlike some other cynical politicians in this state over its history during the fall of the city, I don't believe for one minute he doesn't believe he's doing the right thing.  He's a true believer in that regard.  He just happens to be incredibly wrong on this.

            I'm not going to sit here and go Baghdad Bob on you guys and say that Schauer will beat Snyder by 20 points.  But, I think some of you guys are off the mark on both how possible and how probable it is that Michigan will be one of the handful or so states where Dems show a strong comeback.  I feel a lot of you see this state as Indiana with a Detroit, or maybe even Ohio or Wisconsin.

    •  Notice they didn't say Colorado.... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avedee, KingofSpades, WisJohn, pademocrat

      That's important.

      Hagan's chances will improve when she gets a GOP candidate to beat up on a bit, but she has to start running a better campaign, too.

      I was never really worried about Landrieu, and I'm glad Begich is proving himself competent.  Pryor looks totally lost  and I can't see him coming back.  MT is not even on the map, yet.

      "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

      by LordMike on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:28:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I would be careful what information (5+ / 0-)

      that you get from inside sources that you post. Always make sure from that person that what was said is or is not in confidentiality. If you aren't sure or didn't ask, don't repeat the information.

      24 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 Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 01:28:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, I hope he said it was ok to publicize (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike

        there's no hidden strategy or poll numbers, but you still have to be sure.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:29:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  WI GOV Gravis: Walker 49-44 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    abgin

    "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

    by Paleo on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:29:43 AM PDT

  •  Rep. Mike Rogers is now pretending... (4+ / 0-)

    He could run for president in 2016. Story here.

    On "Fox News Sunday," Rogers said the quality of the current debate on national security and foreign policy made him worried "for the future of this country."

    "So when someone walked in and said, 'Hey, we're going to give you the opportunity to have a discussion in people's cars, living rooms and kitchens, every single day, from California to Iowa to New Hampshire to South Carolina. We think you can change the needle on this debate,' I thought long and hard about it and thought, 'You know, I think they're right.'"

    The states Rogers named aren't just a random assortment: Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina are the first three states on the presidential primary calendar. That led host Chris Wallace to ask whether the congressman was interested in running for higher office.

    "You know, Ronald Reagan back in 1980 -- I don't have to tell you -- used his platform as a radio commentator to run for president," said Wallace. "So is that a consideration for you? Are you prepared at this point to rule out any interest in 2016?"

    "Ronald Reagan used his platform on radio to run for president of the United States? I had no idea, Chris," replied Rogers with a coy, joking smile.

    I would like to remind Rogers that his "coy, joking smiles" will be lost on radio listeners. I would also like to remind Rogers that a member of the House of Representatives has not been elected to the presidency without serving in another elected or appointed office in the interim since President Garfield -- who had just been elected senator by the Ohio State Legislature -- in 1880.

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:10:13 AM PDT

  •  Paris elects its first female mayor (12+ / 0-)

    Spanish born Socialist Anne Hidalgo won by an unexpectedly large margin, beating her center-right rival Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet with 54.5% of the vote.

    Socialist did not do well in the rest of the country. Blame Hollande?

    link

    •  The best thing that Hollande could do (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      when he wakes up to go to work tomorrow morning is resign along with his entire government.

      •  What are they doing wrong? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jj32, MichaelNY, WisJohn

        I'm not pushing back, I'm just curious since I've followed so little foreign politics lately.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:27:58 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  France's (6+ / 0-)

          economy is in the toilet and the budget is a mess...even after Hollande taxed the rich to levels not even Obama or other Democrats outside of Daily Kos would have dreamed off.

          The Republican party is now an extreme right-wing party that is owned by their billionaire campaign contributors. - Bernie Sanders

          by ehstronghold on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:46:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  He made the same mistake.. (7+ / 0-)

            that other ostensibly leftist politicians make: He failed to create jobs.

            Doesn't help that places like the HLMs are practically falling apart. HLM = habitation à loyer modéré, aka rent-reduced housing for the poor. Something like a sixth of all French people live in them. They're very ghetto. They were created to house the immigrants that came during the 60s, 70s, and 80s, and so naturally they're held up as evidence of the ineffectiveness of immigration into Europe. It gives Marine LePen of the Front National (racist far-right party) an opening. And it's not like they're a small party - they got 20% of the vote during the first round of the presidential election a couple years ago.

            He needs to get his ass into high gear and start seriously fighting to change the French economy and reduce inequality from the bottom up, not just tax rich people to stroke the ids of the communists (not used in a pejorative sense - communists make up a non-insignificant bloc in the French electorate).

            TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

            by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:24:40 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  well that is not fair (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY, Audrid

              F Hollande is making the same mistakes than other politicians of right in Europe.

              Check the GDP growth of France, with a government of right until 2012 and a government of left since then.

              http://www.tradingeconomics.com/...

              Check the GDP growth of Germany with a government of right during all the crisis.

              http://www.tradingeconomics.com/...

              Check the GDP growth of Spain with a government of left until December 2011 and of rignt since then.

              http://www.tradingeconomics.com/...

              And check the GDP growth of Italy with about the inverse situation than Spain.

              http://www.tradingeconomics.com/...

              France and Germany are doing about the same. Spain and Italy are doing about the same. Left or right does not here a difference.

              It agree not with the growing narrative about the government of F Hollande it is an interested narrative against the left.

              If we check the GDP growth of the United Kingdom it seems better, but it is a false image because it is calculed over the basis of the & and is hidding the strong devaluation of the UK currency vs the €.

              http://www.tradingeconomics.com/...

              In the statistical analisys of the Eurostat (European statistical agency) the regions of the UK are losing positions in the last years in terms of GDP per capita, measured in €.

              France has a trouble with the integration of some arab inmigrants. It is a trouble, but the total number of inmigrants is about a 10% and the total number of inmigrants from the arab north africa is about a 3% of the total population of the country, nothing like you see in the United States.

              Plus, all the inmigrants have health insurance covered, even the most recent illegal inmigrants, and many of them have some social benefits that make their life easier than in the United States.

              To compare is hard, but the poorer people has a worse situation in the United States than in countries like France.

              •  and when a say health insurance covered it means (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, Audrid

                - To pay not to visit to the medical services that you need.
                - To pay not if you need to stay in the hospital some days or even some months.
                - To pay not for the covered medical products, that are most of them, including total treatment vs cancer and many other expensive treatments.

        •  Playing Hoover -- i.e. procyclical budgeting (5+ / 0-)

          Going along with tragically misguided German economic 'wisdom' for the EU periphery.  France should get together with Spain and Italy and threaten to kick Germany off the euro.  France should be spending money like water, not cutting the budget, the budget is NOT the problem.  When even the IMF says you've gone too far with austerity, you know there's a problem.

          Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

          by benamery21 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:09:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  The next marriage equality battleground... (8+ / 0-)

    Could be Puerto Rico, where a lawsuit challenging the territory's ban on same-sex marriage was filed last week. Story here.

    It is the first time that someone has filed a lawsuit of this kind in the jurisdiction of Puerto Rico, where lawmakers last year approved four measures in favor of the gay community. One of the bills signed by Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla prohibits employment discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation, and another extends a domestic violence law to gay couples.

    The extension of the domestic violence law places Puerto Rico ahead of 46 U.S. states that have no such law, according to local human rights activist Pedro Julio Serrano.

    Puerto Rico also is ahead of 33 U.S. states in approving a hate crime law, he said.

    "People always think that Puerto Rico is behind," he said in a phone interview. "But we're actually ahead of the majority of U.S. states."

    I wonder how marriage equality polls in Puerto Rico. It's lagged Democratic performance in heavily Latino states like New Mexico and Nevada. Puerto Rico is obviously a very different culture, with a different political situation and history, so it's hard to draw a direct comparison.

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:27:27 PM PDT

    •  What is the ruling party's (PPD) view on SSM? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, pademocrat

      It seems that their Governor, Alejandro Padilla, opposes SSM: http://laht.com/... However, he is supposedly more gay-friendly than the PNP and Fortuno were: http://nbclatino.com/...

      So I guess that unless Garcia switches, it will be done via court ruling.

      Speaking of which, as you are someone who follows PR politics, how has the PPD handled their return to power?  Are they trying to avoid their past mistakes and start anew?

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:35:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think PPD will probably be kicked out in 2016 (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SaoMagnifico

        Not because of anything they've done, but because most Puerto Ricans are pro-statehood (or at least anti-territory). Garcia Padilla beat Fortuño almost solely due to the rough shape of the PR economy.

        PPD is historically pro-status quo when it comes to PR's political status, and that's just not tenable.

        26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

        by HoosierD42 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:49:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why isn't it tenable? n/t (0+ / 0-)

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:16:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Because Puerto Ricans aren't pro-status quo (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SaoMagnifico

            The last referendum proved that. And when PPD's only defining position is pro-status quo, that's just not going to work out long term.

            26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

            by HoosierD42 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:38:22 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  True, but there is the matter of spoiled ballots. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              The language was crafted by the PNP to lead people to vote to approve it and many people just decided to leave it blank or write-in their answer.

              I want statehood too, but they may not be yet.

              “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

              by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:41:12 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I want Puerto Rico to be a state (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                KingofSpades

                only if Puerto Ricans really want to be a state, and there's no likelihood they'll change their mind later.

                Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:47:02 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  I don't know if a pro-statehood majority exists (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                KingofSpades, MichaelNY

                But a solid majority of voters said "no" to the status quo, and that was at an election in which the dismal approvals for then-Gov. Fortuño may have depressed turnout among some typical PNP supporters.

                There really needs to be a legal framework through which Puerto Ricans are able to determine their future status. The pipe dream "expanded commonwealth" option in which Puerto Rico has no federal taxation, broad autonomy, federal subsidies -- basically all of the privileges of statehood with none of the responsibilities -- is constitutionally impossible and needs to be put to rest. Basically, the four choices are statehood, free association (an option that needs to be far more clearly defined than it was in the 2012 plebiscite), independence, and status quo. Puerto Rico needs to be allowed to decide on its future status in a fair, inclusive referendum with the full support of Congress and the White House. I think the two-part format was entirely appropriate, but the politicization of the referendum, the lack of education surrounding the "free association" option, and the murky legal situation of having a vote without congressional backing were complicating factors to its fairness.

                Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

                by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:48:55 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Unless a pro-statehood majority exists (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  SaoMagnifico

                  Puerto Rico probably should not become a state. Is there any precedent for any other territory becoming a state without a majority vote for statehood (though perhaps in the olden days by the state legislature)?

                  Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                  by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:38:52 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  There aren't many modern precedents... (0+ / 0-)

                    For a territory becoming a state, period. But I agree with you -- although I would support a concerted campaign to make Puerto Ricans more aware of the benefits of statehood and cut through what I see as a lot of deception by opponents of statehood. I think statehood is in the best interests of Puerto Rico and the United States, and I think the territory's second-class, colonial status is both a disservice to Puerto Ricans and a disgrace upon our shared country.

                    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

                    by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:44:07 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  It's no disgrace for them to self-determine (0+ / 0-)

                      a commonwealth status. I don't feel ashamed.

                      The most recent precedents are Alaska/Hawaii. Were there referendums there?

                      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                      by MichaelNY on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:16:47 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  A referendum in Hawaii... (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        Approved admission overwhelmingly -- almost a suspect result, considering anti-American sentiments among some quarters in Hawaii lingered well into the 20th century.

                        A referendum in Alaska in 1946 was considerably narrower, but a majority did approve statehood by about a 20-point margin.

                        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

                        by SaoMagnifico on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:23:59 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

              •  More people still voted explicitly for statehood (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                KingofSpades, MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

                than voted for the status quo. Remember.

                First question: Do you agree that Puerto Rico should continue to have its present form of territorial status?

                Yes: 816,978 votes (46%)

                Second question: Which of the following non-territorial options would you prefer?

                Statehood: 824,195 votes (61% of non-blank votes)

                I never said the entire island was pro-statehood, but it's certainly not pro-status quo.

                26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

                by HoosierD42 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:22:23 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Splintered (0+ / 0-)

                  The problem is that political opinion seems somewhat splintered. I don't foresee Congress approving statehood unless a clear majority of Puerto Ricans want it, and I don't blame Congress for feeling that way.

                  Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                  by MichaelNY on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:39:55 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  It isn't tenable even aside from political Qs (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SaoMagnifico

            because the economy and budget situation are horrible in Puerto Rico. Their unemployment rate is way higher than any state (well over 14%) and their government bonds are basically junk and the island is saddled with debt. Whether or not that's because of the island's political status is really beside the point, because to the average voter why wouldn't you want to change the political institutions when the economy is that bad?

        •  Are you sure? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          A Puerto Rican once commented on the results of the 2012 races in which the PNP were swept out (of the legislature, the Executive, and out of 60% of the mayoral offices) and said part of the reason was  because the PNP and Fortuno were trying to "Americanize" Puerto Ricans.  His program mandating a transition to English education was an echo of similar program the US tried to force on Puerto Rico a century ago and it rubbed them the wrong way.  The 2012 referendum, although it technically approved statehood, had A LOT of spoiled ballots by people who were confused by the leading language on the ballot.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:39:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The economy was a BIG part (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

            but I can imagine that Fortuno's attempts to change their culture (or so it would seem to them) also rubbed them the wrong way.

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:57:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Turkish Election Results (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades

    Today Turkey held muncipal and provincial elections, since there isn't really a difference between the two(mayors are basically governors, district mayors are closer to our mayors). It's the first electoral test for the government since 2011, and therefore since efforts to ban co-ed student accommodation, since the Taksim Gezi Park protests, since the outbreak of the current corruption scandals, and the ban on Twitter.

    http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/...

    The race is between the ruling AKP, a Center-Right Islamist party that has become more rightist and more Islamist in recent years. Their opposition the Left-Wing, Secular People's Republican Party(CHP), which was Attaturk's vehicle. The MHP is a Secular, but Far-Right party.

    The election has basically been AKP v. everyone else, hence why you see people voting for the MHP for provincial assembly(which is presumably the most right-wing party on economic issues) voting for the CHP candidates for Mayor. The big fights are for Istanbul and Ankara which the AKP is officially winning right now, though I have a friend on the ground in an opposition polling place where he has quite a few ballot boxes that he claims no one has picked up or counted. Whether they will be counted in the future is an open question however.

    •  Were the MHP that party that caused that (0+ / 0-)

      c. 1980 coup where citizens accused of producing pornography and/or Communist propaganda were summarily imprisoned?

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:54:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Looks like AKP is trying to steal the election... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades

      In Ankara, judging from Twitter reports.

      Unfortunately, it seems like Turkey is going to need a revolution of its own to dislodge the increasingly dictatorial Erdogan government.

      Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

      by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:53:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  WI - Shameless Diary Pimping (5+ / 0-)

    Do I think we'll take back the Wisconsin State Assembly? It's extremely unlikely. That said, we could make some significant gains. That's why I profiled the 11 most likely seats to flip from Red to Blue (11 seats needed to flip the chamber). There's maps! There's in-depth analysis! There's numbers! There's lingo on local politics! Check it out!

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    "Go Forth in Love and Peace" --Be Kind to Dogs -- And Vote Democratic" --Dying words of Senator Thomas Eagleton, 2007

    by BlueSasha on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:16:48 PM PDT

  •  More Pacific Northwest redistricting (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, Jorge Harris, WisJohn

    I think Washington is on track to increase to 11 districts, and anyway, I thought it would be fun to draw it.

    Unlike Oregon, Washington has election data in DRA.

    WA-01 (blue): 57.8% Obama, 51.1% Murray
    WA-02 (green): 69.8% Obama, 65.5% Murray
    WA-03 (purple): 53.1% Obama, 47% Murray
    WA-04 (red): 42.2% Obama, 35.9% Murray
    WA-05 (yellow): 40.5% Obama, 37.4% Murray
    WA-06 (teal): 54% Obama, 48% Murray
    WA-07 (magenta): 71.4% Obama, 65.8% Murray
    WA-08 (lime): 70.3% Obama, 64.3% Murray
    WA-09 (cyan): 58.1% Obama, 53.4% Murray
    WA-10 (orange): 56.6% Obama, 52.6% Murray
    WA-11 (maroon): 52% Obama, 47% Murray

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:57:03 PM PDT

  •  Great news for Mitch McConnell (13+ / 0-)

    Duke made it to the Final Four! :)

    Seriously, though, did Grimes run any ads during the UK-Louisville game? Bevin did, and I read a McConnell super Pac did as well.

    I think it would be a good investment for her campaign to run an ad during the Final Four game, and if UK wins, the national championship game. A lot of people will be watching.  And I bet McConnell and Bevin will be running ads.

    •  Those ads will be expensive... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jj32

      ...even local ones, and the typical demographic of such an event typically unfriendly to our side.  If it is affordable, it's still worth doing, but it might not be worth the cost.

      "I know you cannot force people to care. Ukraine is far away for many, all have own problems. But even if cynical, realize problem will grow. It isn't only people like me, raised in a dictatorship, who don't want it to happen to others"-Gary Kasparov

      by LordMike on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:23:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't really think that's a pro-McConnell demo (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY
      •  How so unfriendly? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jj32, MichaelNY, pademocrat, KingofSpades

        ALG needs to rack up points wherever she can. While it may be unfriendly to our side (I'm not convinced), running an ad about McConnell's basketball gaffe during a basketball game is the only way to maximize the return on that gaffe.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (Celia Israel-D). Senate ratings map (as of 3/10/14)

        by Le Champignon on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:13:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Kind of tricky, I think. (0+ / 0-)

          Stuff like this is better propagated by local media and by working the press.

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:35:02 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  And I've found data... (6+ / 0-)

        http://www.thepostgame.com/...

        College basketball fans are, on average, pretty close to the center, politically, maybe slightly right.  But they are more politically active, relative to other sports fandoms, so it seems this would be a good demographic for ALG (and/or McConnell) to target.

        The most liberal sports fans... unsurprisingly... the WNBA.  The most conservative are golf fans.

        Pro-wrestling fans are the least politically active.

        And the one thing that surprised me, monster truck fans (I didn't even know that was a sport) are left of center.  Small sample?

        •  Horse Racing, suprisingly, leans Dem as well (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JacobNC

          Regarding monster truck fans, I live in a region of the country (Downstate Illinois) where monster truck racing has a sizable fan base, and most monster truck fans I know are either not politically engaged or have hard-right political views.

          Also, the Summer and Winter Olympics were not differentiated, although, using NBA and NHL as a rough guide, my guess is that fans of the Winter Olympics would be more right-leaning than fans of the Summer Olympics to some degree.

          Also, I'm surprised to see WWE (which isn't actually a sport since professional wrestling matches are scripted) fans being left-leaning.

          (Just in case you're wondering, I'm a leftist NASCAR fan)

    •  I don't think people outside of Kentucky (7+ / 0-)

      realize how much Duke is hated the Bluegrass State among Kentucky fans. Every UK fan can still remember the Christian Laetner stomp from the 1992 Final Four game where he stomped Aminu Timberlake. I am not the strongly dislike side of UK, but I know still people talk about that to this day. Still little long term impact on the race other than Mitch looking like an idiot and Alison Grimes playing up her UK ties.

      "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

      by SouthernINDem on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:11:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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

        If there's one thing about KY I know for sure is that they're fiercely proud of their basketball teams.

        “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

        by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:33:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  And while I'm at it... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, James Allen, ChadmanFL

    What should be a strengthened version of my Oregon six-district map from above:

    OR-03 now stretches from north Portland all the way to Albany, OR-04 gives up most of Douglas County to extend south to Ashland and east to Crook County, and OR-05 gives up Portland east of 82th Avenue and north of Division in order to take in about half of rural Linn County (swaps with OR-06).

    The primary net effects are shoring up OR-04 and OR-06. That shift will come at the expense of OR-05, which can handle it; it will push OR-02 even redder.

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:29:00 PM PDT

    •  Excellent work (0+ / 0-)

      I really like that Portland to Corvallis snake you got there.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:30:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I love the concept of an I-5 corridor district (0+ / 0-)

      I'm not sure about how it leaves the rest of the state, though.

      Also, I really think its malpractice to put Crook County into any Dem district. It should be like a basic rule. I'll look at this in a few.

      "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

      by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:16:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I actually checked on this... (0+ / 0-)

        And Crook County had slightly better Democratic performance than Douglas County in the 2010 Senate race, and way better performance in 2004. I'm wondering if Romney's strong performance there in 2012, and then-Sen. Smith's strong performance there in 2008, has to do with the Mormon vote in Prineville.

        Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

        by SaoMagnifico on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:16:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  DeFazio almost won Douglas in 2012, though (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SaoMagnifico, KingofSpades

          he outperformed Obama by double digits in most of the county. Example: Obama's best precinct in Roseburg he got 49%, DeFazio got almost 62%. I think DeFazio won almost every city in the county. I doubt he'd replicate that in Crook.

          DeFazio compared to Obama
           photo DefaziocomparedtoObama2012_zps388a927e.jpg

          "I join Justice Ginsburg's dissent in full." - Clarence Thomas in Philip Morris USA v. Williams

          by James Allen on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:18:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  NH-02: Apparently, the two GOPers are snoozefests (3+ / 0-)

    embedded deep in this article about an NH Chamber of Commerce meeting: http://www.lowellsun.com/...

    Pulling no punches on two prominent fellow Republicans, Hudson, N.H., Selectman Roger Coutu let viewers of the board's Tuesday meeting know exactly how unimpressed he is with state Rep. Marilinda Garcia and Gary Lambert of Nashua, a former state senator.

    *

    "It was another great Chamber dinner, as it is every year, except for the two congressional candidates, who put me to sleep,' Coutu said. "If that's the best the Republican Party has to offer, we're in trouble as a party."

    Later in the meeting, Chairman Rick Maddox said: "I was fascinated to hear from two people running for Congress who really don't have that simple grasp or ability to deal with the problems that Hudson has."

    h/t Miscellanyblue

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:15:41 PM PDT

  •  CO-Gov: Bob Beauprez birther? (4+ / 0-)

    And we're supposed to be scared of this guy?
    It was from almost 4 years ago, but show a man with clearly warped thinking:
    http://coloradopols.com/...
    http://kdvr.com/...

    This quote says all you need to know about Beauprez as a person:

    “I address it another way: if this guy is an American citizen, he’s a different kind of an American than virtually any that I know,” Beauprez said.

    “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

    by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:24:38 PM PDT

    •  It seems Beauprez went hard right post-2006 (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

      In recent years, he's run a blog where he's showcased some pretty right-wing fodder like "Obamacare killed my sister" and other click-bait.

      “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

      by KingofSpades on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:32:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MI Sen: Fact-checkers call BS on new anti-ACA ad (4+ / 0-)

    I know this has gotten coverage here a few days ago, but there seems to have been an updated on the new AFP anti-ACA ad put out against Gary Peters.  Some background:

    GRAND RAPIDS, MI – A West Michigan woman who is unhappy with the Affordable Care Act is featured in a conservative group’s ad attacking Rep. Gary Peters, D-Mich.

    Shannon Wendt, of Tallmadge Township, complains about the cost of her new health plan in the Americans for Prosperity ad, which has been questioned by a fact-check column in The Washington Post.

    Wendt, a mother of five who sells jewelry and knit products, received national attention in January when she appeared in a Fox News story about her troubles signing up for a plan through the federal insurance marketplace. She said her children were deemed ineligible for insurance, and health care navigators could not determine why.

    Later, Wendt said she found out the problem may have stemmed from her children’s eligibility for MI Child, a state health insurance program for working families.

    ...

    The fact-checker column also noted her role as a Republican precinct delegate.

    ...

    It gets worse:
    [Update, March 27: The Fact Checker reviewed a series of Facebook posts that Wendt wrote about her experience earlier in March, including some of the financial choices involved. A key issue is that the family qualified for Medicaid, but she was opposed for philosophical issues; she did not think a family making as much money as hers should qualify for Medicaid. She also thought the level of care was poor. So the family opted for a more expensive plan.

    "While researching plans available on the exchange, Shannon and her husband realized it would mean enrolling their children in Michigan's CHIP plan, MIChild," Russell said. "They had MICHild for a short time years ago, and had a very bad experience with it.  In addition, after more research, they determined that going that route would mean losing access to their doctor, which was not an option for them."]

    Wendt, incidentally, is a Republican precinct delegate for Michigan’s 2nd congressional district. In June, she signed a toughly worded petition warning GOP lawmakers in the Michigan House of Representatives not to accept expansion of Medicaid or the creation of a health care exchange permitted under the Affordable Care Act—or face a suspension of “all monetary and logistical support.” The petition sought to bind the Republicans to the themes of the party’s 2012 platform that declared the law was an “attack on our Constitution” and an “attempt to impose upon Americans a euro-style bureaucracy.”

    Honestly, I can only see a few scenarios of why they keep doing these ads.  The first is that they've found with internal polling that the obfuscation and straight-up lying that energizes this base around this issue is a bigger winner than being called out as liars by the media.  The other is that they've completely misjudged the amount of political points they can win with the issue and they honestly believe this will pull in even independents to help bolster their majorities in the House and win the Senate.

    I can entertain and imagine that it's possible that attacking the ACA works in their favor.  I think they are going to be unpleasantly surprised by just how much it helps them.  If they think this will be enough on its own to win them the Senate, they are sadly mistaken.  

    But, I don't begrudge them for trying.  It's basically all they have.  They can't promise affordable and/or expanded health care.  The cultural/social issues they once used as wedges aren't nearly as salient, and some of them are actually cutting the way of the Dems.  

    I wish more Dems wouldn't play into their false narrative of an ascendent GOP - even at the district level - though.  They are playing from weakness, not strength.  That might be a less-than-optimal-but-only position to defend from when you've lost on so many other fronts, but it speaks to a fake and put-upon confidence that should not be feared, but thoroughly exploited.  I say we drive them backwards by making them own their lies.  If they want to push this stuff, make them pay full price for it.  If Americans "prosper" from fewer and more expensive health care options, make them explain why.

  •  Two Idahos (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, Jorge Harris

    Still rolling with the Pacific Northwest theme (loosely defined, in the case of Idaho, which has no coastline and is culturally much different from western Oregon and Washington). Idaho probably won't gain a third congressional district after the 2020 Census, but it is growing fast and the possibility exists.

    Here is the first map, which creates a compact district based in Boise and Nampa and splits just one county (rapidly growing Canyon County):

    ID-01 (blue): 42.7% Obama
    ID-02 (green): 32.2% Obama
    ID-03 (purple): 33% Obama

    The second map divides the Boise area differently, combining the fairly cosmopolitan city of Boise with northern Idaho for a less compact approach. It splits two counties (Ada and Blaine counties):

    ID-01 (blue): 34% Obama
    ID-02 (green): 44.7% Obama
    ID-03 (purple): 27.8% Obama

    As you can see, while we can draw 5-1 and 9-2 maps of Oregon and Washington respectively without resorting to flagrant gerrymandering (not that it's even an option in the latter state), we don't have much to gain from Idaho adding a third district. The second map contains about the most favorable district we could get without a grotesque Democratic gerrymander, and with Idaho politics locked down by the Republican Party, we're not even likely to get a district that "good".

    Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

    by SaoMagnifico on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:21:02 AM PDT

    •  Redistricting in Idaho (0+ / 0-)

      Is done by a bipartisan commission though. So in theory, a 3-district Idaho could end up with a district like your ID-2 in the second map.

      26, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

      by HoosierD42 on Tue Apr 01, 2014 at 02:27:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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