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Leading Off:

CA-26: Ugh. This is terrible news: Ventura County Supervisor Steve Bennett, the clear Democratic front-runner in the open 26th District, dropped out of the race over the weekend. Why? Because, in the Ventura County Star's words, "his heart remains in serving local government." Uh, seriously? Bennett didn't remember that he loooved local government so so much when he got into the race back in November? That is just a b.s. excuse. Bennett also apparently was concerned that a split Democratic field would mean two Republicans would wind up advancing to the general election via the top-two primary system, something almost unimaginable, especially given the low profile of the other Dems in the race. So yeah, b.s.

As for those remaining Democrats, there are three of them, and each is trying to make their case: businessman David Cruz Thayne, Moorpark Councilman David Pollock, and Oxnard Harbor District Commissioner Jess Herrera. But in the fourth quarter, Pollock raised just $26K and Thayne $27K, while Herrera hasn't filed any reports yet. Given the state of the field, a couple of other bigger players are now considering (or re-considering). Assemblywoman Julia Brownley says she's "taking a very serious look" and former Ventura Mayor Richard Francis, who weighed a bid last year, is re-evaluating the situation.

On the GOP side, state Sen. Tony Strickland appears to be the establishment choice, though Ventura County Supervisor is also in the race. Neither has filed any fundraising reports yet. If you have our California cheat sheet handy, you know that this district went for Obama by a 56-41 margin in 2008, but it was almost evenly split in statewide races last cycle. While we aren't likely to have a year as bad as 2010, this seat is winnable for Republicans if they have a strong candidate and we have a weak one. By our math, it would count as a pickup if we win, meaning it's a crucial seat toward taking back control of the House, so we'll need to step up our recruitment.


HI-Sen: If you dig in the archives you can find a poll in the open seat Hawaii Senate race to support whatever narrative you'd like, but a new survey by local pollster Ward Research shows Democratic Rep. Mazie Hirono firmly in control, leading Ed Case in the primary and Linda Lingle in the general, both by 20 points. Click through for our full writeup at Daily Kos Elections. (David Jarman)

IN-Sen: The memo describing Republican Sen. Dick Lugar's new poll is the most bare-bones, poorly produced one-pager I think I've ever seen. It looks like it was photocopied at Kinko's as an afterthought by a guy who just got finished pasting together some ransom notes. Click through to see what I mean—and note the cut-off letterhead. What's more, it doesn't even fill up a single page, despite some liberal quadruple-spacing in the header that would even make a desperate college student blush. And what makes this even better is that, as Dave Catanese points out, Lugar just switched pollsters, from American Viewpoint to National Research. At least he knows his new firm isn't wasting money!

Anyhow, Lugar claims he has a 55-30 lead over Treasurer Richard Mourdock in the GOP primary, which is pretty similar to the 45-31 mark his old pollster had him at last July. Numbers from the Club for Growth and Dem Rep. Joe Donnelly (who is running for Senate) paint a different picture, however, suggesting the race is neck-and-neck. (Even though a lot of the numbers are old, no one's really spent enough to move the needle much here.) I'll be curious to see if Mourdock responds with a poll of his own, though.

While we're on the topic, Mourdock is out with a new ad in which he speaks directly to the camera to attack Lugar on earmarks. I dunno if the whole John McCain-esque, let's-dig-up-some-goofy-sounding-line-items thing still carries a lot of resonance (Mourdock says Lugar supported a "teapot museum"), but then again, I'm not exactly your typical GOP primary voter. I think the ad is decent (though I'm not sure about the peppy, tinny music that arrives at the end, which sounds like something that would accompany the closing credits of an `80s sitcom), though there's no word on how much Mourdock is spending to put it on the air. Anyhow, have a look yourself at the link or below:

I also haven't run any focus groups, but I wonder if Mourdock might gain more traction hitting Lugar on an issue that's really come to life in the last week or so: his state of residence. As Indiana Democratic Party press secretary Ben Ray points out, Lugar hasn't lived in Indiana "since Jimmy Carter was president." Remarkably, Lugar is still registered to vote at the address of a home that he sold in 1977! He's been living in McLean, Virginia ever since and stays at hotels when he visits the Hoosier State. And just how often Lugar actually returns to Indiana is an open question: Democrats say they've identified just 325 nights over the last twenty years which Lugar has sought taxpayer reimbursement for. (A spokesman claims it's much more—almost a quarter of each year!—adding that political expenses aren't accounted for.)

Lugar's also gotten a world of crap for this ill-considered attempt at pushback:

"It's just like the United States military. If you're a military personnel and you're in defense of this country and service to this country and you're overseas, you keep your last place of residence," said Lugar spokesman David Willkie to WISH-TV.
I'm imagining some World War II newsreel-style footage where Dick Lugar is sharing a foxhole with Kelly Ayotte and Ron Johnson and I'm thinking, yeah, being a senator is just like serving in the military.

NE-Sen, NE-Gov: As expected, Dem state Sen. Steve Lathrop announced on Monday that he won't run for the open U.S. Senate seat. That leaves University of Nebraska Board of Regents member Chuck Hassebrook as the only declared Democrat. Nebraska has an unusual (in fact, I think unique) candidate filing system whereby incumbents must declare their intentions by Feb. 15, but non-officeholders have until March 1. So we may yet see more people enter, though any current elected officials only have a couple more days to do so.

Lathrop isn't disappearing from the statewide scene, though: He says he's interested in running for governor in 2014, when the seat will be open. The last Democrat who won a gubernatorial race in Nebraska? None other than retiring Sen. Ben Nelson, who somehow managed to rack up an amazing 73% to win re-election in 1994, of all years, after defeating Republican incumbent Kay Orr in a squeaker in 1990.


NH-Gov: John Stephen, the 2010 GOP gubernatorial nominee who gave Gov. John Lynch a good scare, says he won't take a second shot at the governor's mansion now that the seat is open.


AZ-02, AZ-08: Though the Democratic field cleared easily for former Gabby Giffords aide Ron Barber in the special election, the same thing isn't happening for the general election in the fall. State Sen. Paula Aboud, who replaced Giffords in the Senate when Giffords resigned to run for Congress in 2006, says she'll run in the August Democratic primary for the redrawn AZ-02. State Rep. Matt Heinz also seems likely to follow suit, which means that if Barber wins the June special, he'll likely have a real race on his hands to retain the nomination.

(As an aside, that leads me to an interesting trivia question: Who was the last person to win a special election but lose in the subsequent regularly scheduled primary? The answer, courtesy of commenter RBH: Alton Waldon, who won the NY-06 special in 1986 but lost the Democratic primary that fall to Floyd Flake.)

In the meantime, though, not only is Barber locking down broad support from members of his own party, Tucson City Councilman Steve Kozachik—a Republican—is also endorsing him, and what's more, Kozachik is even calling for all other candidates from both parties to stand down and let Barber fill out Giffords' term unopposed! Obviously, that's not going to happen, but it does make you wonder how much of an appetite the GOP will have for contesting the special (and the unusual emotional tug Barber's candidacy will create), as opposed to focusing its resources on the general.

California (PDF): The California Democratic Party held its annual convention this past weekend, and the main news comes out of several congressional districts where the party either did or did not choose to formally endorse a particular candidate. (The full list is at the link.) From a practical point of view, the advantages that this official declaration of support carries aren't huge, though you do get included on party mailings and get listed on the ballot as the endorsed candidate. But perhaps as important if not moreso, it demonstrates who has juice with the party's most dedicated activists. In any event, the next four items below all relate to the convention endorsement process.

CA-30: It's a little hard to know what to make of the fact that California Dems failed to endorse in the titanic 30th District battle between Reps. Brad Sherman and Howard Berman. Sherman secured 55% of the vote, but that was short of the 60% he needed to secure the party's backing, and what's more, the fight is on turf that ought to be more favorable to him. Berman brought up that fact at the convention and directly took a shot at Sherman:

"Do you find it slightly pathetic that a guy who represents twice as much of the (newly drawn) district, started with $2 million more in cash on hand, finds it necessary this early in the campaign to spend all his time attacking and distorting his opponent's record? Maybe a little insecurity here?"
I actually find that sort of quote a bit whiny, but Berman's not wrong about who represents more of the new 30th.

CA-35: In more California endorsement news, Rep. Joe Baca secured the Democratic Party's backing by just a single vote—and only after he contested the eligibility of certain delegates, following a round of balloting in which he was rejected... also by just one vote. (Incumbents seeking re-election only need to get 50% to secure the party's endorsement, not the usual 60%.) Baca's chief opponent in the primary, state Sen. Gloria Negrete McCleod, was unable to avail herself of party rules which allow her to ask that an endorsement be rescinded by a two-thirds vote of the full convention because the dispute wasn't adjudicated until after the deadline for doing so had passed. In any event, the fact that Baca doesn't have sufficient pull to gain the formal support of the Democratic Party can't be good news for him—but it likely is good news for progressives, who would be better off with Negrete McLeod in Congress.

CA-44: This seems like as sure a sign as any that Rep. Laura Richardson's days in Congress are numbered: The California Democratic Party officially endorsed Rep. Janice Hahn by a huge margin in this incumbent-vs.-incumbent primary, with 79% of delegates giving Hahn the thumbs-up. But the fact that activists overwhelmingly favor Hahn, even against another sitting member of the House, is quite telling. Thanks to her considerable ethical baggage, though, it's no surprise to see that Richardson has few friends left.

CA-51: Here's one other important outcome from the California Democratic party's endorsement process over the weekend, in the San Diego seat that's being left open by Rep. Bob Filner's mayoral run. The party opted for state Sen. Juan Vargas, over the woman who preceded him in SD-40, Denise Moreno Ducheny. Although it's a much lower profile race than, say, -erman vs. -erman in CA-30's primary, there's a more clear-cut sense here of who's more progressive (and it's not Vargas). Vargas is usually thought of as being part of the "business Dem" wing of California's Democratic Party; while most of his voting record passes muster, he's not always there on key votes. (This is particularly true where the insurance industry is concerned, a very recent case in point being his decision a few weeks ago to abstain in the state Senate's vote on single-payer health care in California (which failed to become law only by two votes). Vargas has also ruffled a lot of feathers with his repeat primary challenges of the strongly progressive Filner, although those races seemed to be mostly about identity politics and a personal animosity between the two that seems to go well beyond just-business. (David Jarman)

FL-18: Now this could be a pretty fun primary. GOP Rep. Allen West, as you know, fled north up the Florida coast to the new 18th CD in order to avoid certain defeat after his district was made bluer by the state legislature's redistricting legislation. After Tom Rooney agreed to run elsewhere, it looked like West would have this seat all to himself, but that may no longer be the case.

Robert Crowder, a five-term Sheriff of Martin County, says that he's considering a primary challenge to West, and expects to have a decision "soon"—possibly as early as this week. Now, you might think that this could be a bad thing for Team Blue, given that West's brand of crazy is exactly what we want to run against in November. However, Crowder has some glaring weaknesses that West could exploit in a Republican primary: namely, he endorsed and appeared in an ad on behalf of Democrat Alex Sink in her gubernatorial campaign against crumb-bum Republican Rick Scott. If West clobbers Crowder over his lack of Republican loyalty, it's exactly the sort of attack that will give him a lot of traction in a primary, but won't play as well in a district that supported Obama over McCain by a 51-48 margin.

As for the Democratic primary, businessman Patrick Murphy currently has the race to himself, but local beat reporter Eve Samples writes that St. Lucie Dems are considering fielding a candidate of their own. However, there appear to be no obvious contenders: A trio of potential candidates, St. Lucie County Sheriff Ken Mascara, St. Lucie County Commissioner Christ Craft, and ex-Commissioner Doug Coward, have all pulled their names from consideration. (James L)

IL-10: Activist Ilya Sheyman is up with his first ad, which also makes him the first candidate in the Democratic primary to hit the airwaves. As you'd expect, Sheyman touts his credentials as a progressive, though he also mentions that his family came to the U.S. as "Jewish refugees." No word on the size of the buy, though Sheyman had about $200K on hand as of the end of last year. You can watch the ad at the link or below:

IL-13: Another big get for Greene County State’s Attorney Matt Goetten: Sen. Dick Durbin just endorsed him in his bid for the Democratic nomination. Last week, Goetten secured the backing of the Illinois AFL-CIO.

MI-03: Trevor Thomas, who, as the Washington Blade puts it, "headed communications for Servicemembers Legal Defense Network during the victorious effort to end the military’s anti-gay ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy," became the first Democrat to enter the race against GOP freshman Justin Amash. What surprises me is that no Republican has yet decided to primary Amash, a recalcitrant dystopian who can typically be found jabbing nettles into John Boehner's buttocks.

NC-09, NC-08: In the wake of Rep. Sue Myrick's retirement announcement, insurance executive Daniel Barry says he's switching from the 11th District race (now also open because of Rep. Heath Shuler's retirement) 8th District race (again Dem Rep. Larry Kissell) to the 9th, where he actually lives. That makes Barry at least the third Republican to join the primary: Mecklenburg County Commissioner Jim Pendergraph and real estate broker Michael Shaffer are already running, and I'd expect the field to only grow from here, at least on the GOP side.

Democrats, though, are likely to be less interested in this seat, given how red it is, and one potential candidate, Charlotte Mayor Pro Tem Patrick Cannon, has already said he won't run. But it looks like Dems have indeed scored a legit recruit in the form of Jennifer Roberts, a county commissioner in populous Mecklenburg County who says she'll make a bid. This is the bluest part of the district, though: Mecklenburg went for Obama, 62-37, and it's also split between the 9th and 12th CDs.

NM-01: Well yuck. Usually when it's time for a Clinton Alert!, I'm pretty excited, or at least pleased. Not in this case, though. The Big Dog is, sadly, endorsing conservaDem Marty Chavez in the Democratic primary for the open 1st District House seat, and also sending out a fundraising email. Blech. As you can probably guess, Chavez was a supporter of (and superdelegate for) Hillary Clinton in 2008, something which usually explains who Bill is supporting and why.

OH-09: At least Dennis Kucinich is always good for the lolz. At a recent debate with fellow Dem Rep. Marcy Kaptur, Special K tried this one on for size:

In the hourlong back-and-forth this morning, Kucinich was forced to defend his flirtation with running for a new House seat in Washington state, including multiple visits to the West Coast for speeches and events.

“At no time, did I ever state I was leaving the area,” Kucinich responded. “I’ve never said that, and any claim to the contrary is fictional.”

Is Kucinich really trying to prevail on a Clintonian technicality? Here's what he did say:
“My district appears to be on the block, so I am looking at options, and I am not limiting those options to Ohio,” Mr. Kucinich said.
PA-12: Well this sure is interesting. Both Reps. Jason Altmire and Mark Critz occupy turf at the right-ward end of the Democratic caucus (albeit in somewhat different spots), and whichever one of them survives the primary still needs to retain appeal to conservative voters in this 54% McCain district. But first... you gotta survive the primary, and Critz evidently thinks that trying to carve out some territory to Altmire's left is what he needs to do to make it to the playoffs. Check this out from a recent fundraising email:
“While I don’t always vote with the Democratic leadership, I am a proud Democrat and I am not afraid to say it. Jason Altmire voted with the Republican leadership 53% of the time in 2011 and never misses an opportunity to go on Fox News to bash the Democratic Party. I have never been on Fox News and I never will.”
Altmire's people say Critz is fudging the voting numbers, but I think the Fox News hit is a much more solid blow and one that can't be refuted or muddied quite so easily. I'll be curious to see what Altmire's next move is: whether he tries to respond in kind, or whether he concedes the liberal vote to Critz and concentrates on his geographic advantage. (Altmire represents more than twice as much of the new 12th as Critz does.)

Other Races:

NY-St. Sen: This is a pretty crazy story. According to one version of events—his own—Republican state Sen. Mark Grisanti tried to break up a heated argument after a black-tie gala at an Indian casino—and then got assaulted, along with his wife, for his efforts. But several witnesses paint a different picture, saying Grisanti "escalated a situation that seemed to be calming" and supposedly socked another guy and his wife. New York political news site City & State says that a cellphone video of the brawl is forthcoming, so I guess we'll have a better sense of who's telling the truth then. (And why mention all this? Grisanti is a recent party-switcher who won an almost impossible upset in a deep blue district last cycle, and who is now the target of desperate GOP efforts to give him a winnable seat this year.)

Special Elections: There are a couple of state legislative special elections on Tuesday night, and as always, Johnny Longtorso tells you what you need to know:

Oklahoma SD-46: Seat left vacant by Democrat Andrew Rice's resignation, the Democrat is State Rep. Al McAffrey, the Republican is attorney Jason Reese. For some reason this is being run under the new district lines. It's in Oklahoma City.

Oklahoma HD-01: Seat left vacant by the death of freshman Rep. Rusty Farley. Democrat is high school principal Curtis McDaniel, Republican is bed and breakfast owner Joe Silk. This one is being run under the old district lines; it's basically all but a small slice of McCurtain County (in the southeast corner of the state). It's one of those ancestrally-Democratic areas; the seat was held by a Democrat until 2010, and in the primary for this special election, the total Democratic vote was four times higher than the total Republican vote.

Grab Bag:

AZ Recall: Arizona Republicans, smarting over last year's recall of state Senate President Russell Pearce, are proposing to change the rules for recalls. Pearce lost in a single non-partisan election, where Democrats and independents were able to unite with disaffected Republicans and elect another Republican, Jerry Lewis, in Pearce's stead. The GOP obviously wasn't happy about being on the wrong end of this coalition-of-convenience and wants to require closed partisan primaries in any future recalls, much like the system used in Wisconsin.

Indiana (PDF): Friday was the filing deadline in Indiana, and you can see a complete list of all the candidates who've gotten their names on the ballot at the link, though there were no last-minute surprises to speak of. You can also view all this information in a more handy format at the constantly-updated Race Tracker Wiki. (And if you see something that isn't up-to-date over there, sign up for an account and start inputting data yourself!)

New York: Democratic Assembly Speaker Shelly Silver just introduced legislation that would move New York's state and local primaries to June 26, the same date a judge ordered that New York's federal primaries must take place in order to comply with federal law regarding the timing of sending absentee ballots to overseas voters. Republicans, though, are opposed, which means that the state could wind up holding three separate (and costly) primaries in a single year: a presidential one on April 24, a federal one in June, and a state one on Sept. 11.

Redistricting Roundup:

CT Redistricting: No surprise at all: On Friday, the Connecticut Supreme Court adopted the new congressional map drawn by special master Nathan Persily, turning back GOP objections. This is a good win for Democrats, since the new lines, which are barely changed from the existing ones, preserve our ability to maintain a 5-0 hold on the state's delegation.

FL Redistricting: In addition to passing its new congressional plans, Florida's legislature also enacted new legislative maps last week. They actually don't need to be signed by Gov. Rick Scott, but instead, the AG must send them within 15 days to the state supreme court for automatic review (which is exactly what Republican Pam Bondi did on Friday). Here's what happens next, under the Fair Districts amendments: The court (which has scheduled oral arguments for Feb. 29) has 30 days to issue a ruling on the new maps as to whether they pass muster under the amendments. If they find any problems with them, then the governor has to call a special session of the legislature to re-draw the lines. If the lege fails to come up with new plans, or if they do so but the revised proposals still fail to satisfy the high court, then the judges themselves must implement new maps of their own. Click the link for the exact timing on each of these steps if you're interested.

KY Redistricting, KY-06: Ryan Alessi has some preliminary Obama-McCain numbers for the new congressional districts (as well as results from the close 2008 Senate race between Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell and his Democratic challenger, Bruce Lunsford). In the all-important 6th CD, home of Rep. Ben Chandler (the guy Dems were trying to protect), Barack Obama would have done about 1.5% better under the redrawn lines. That's still hardly awesome (Obama got 43% there in 2008), but that ought to be just enough to help Chandler. You can click through the link to see all the other numbers.

NM Redistricting (PDF): Just tying up a couple of loose ends on the redistricting front. As you'll recall, late in December, the judge hearing New Mexico's redistricting case adopted a new congressional map, known as the "Joint Plan" or "Egolf Executive." At that point, the way things typically work, parties are allowed to file objections, if any, before the judge enters a final order. It doesn't appear that there were any objections, though, and the judge (James Hall) filed his final order on Jan. 17, which you can read at the first link. It also looks as though no one appealed Hall's congressional ruling (though his state House decision was appealed), which means New Mexico is set on the congressional front.

NY Redistricting: The New York World has another great interactive map, this time showing how the Senate would fare under the proposed new lines if every vote cast in senatorial races in 2010 remained unchanged in 2012; that would yield a 34-29 edge for Republicans. Of course, plenty of seats were uncontested last cycle, so it's not a perfect measure, but it gives you a pretty good sense of what this map does. You can click through to see the estimated D/R vote in each new seat at the link.

TX Redistricting: A ton of alternative compromise maps are now being proposed in the San Antonio case by different parties, and as usual, Michael Li has links to them all.

WA Redistricting: In Washington, each decade, the state's new redistricting plans automatically become law under Art. 2, Sec. 43 of the state constitution "by the end of the thirtieth day of the first session convened after the commission has submitted its plan to the legislature." That day was Feb. 7, so Washington is good to go.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 05:00 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Valentine's Day (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo

    is deeply depressing.

  •  Romney to Detroit: Well, y'all didn't go bankrupt (8+ / 0-)

    but shame on Obama still!

    Sh*t politicians say: "I'm Pete 'Spend It Not' Hoekstra and I approve this message." -'Police State' Pete

    by KingofSpades on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 05:12:50 AM PST

    •  Hahaha, (5+ / 0-)

      "I am a son of Detroit".

      And insisting that he's right about the bailout, even now.

      I don't think this is going to play too well in Michigan. Surprising that he stuck his head above the parapet at this time.

      •  It won't go over well (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Setsuna Mudo, KingofSpades

        Romney seems to think that people will believe something just because he says it.  A few weeks ago, when Obama made a visit to Ann Arbor, Romney wrote an article that started "Welcome To Michigan."  He does he not realize how disingenuous these statements come off?  He hasn't lived here in over 40 years.  Trying to convince Michigan residents that he is "one of us" is pointless.  I doubt many people are going to vote for him just because he was born in the state.  

        As far as the bailout, at least he's admitting what Obama did isn't the same as what he had proposed.  

    •  Oakland County Republicans (7+ / 0-)

      One of the themes I've noticed on DKE is the "Why is Romney losing when he has the Oakland County Republicans"?  Blatant Pandering like this - being a liberal when he needs to be a liberal, being a conservative when he needs to be a conservative, being a "son of Detroit" in Michigan, bashing the auto industry out of Detroit - has really turned me off, and from the anectodal evidence, has turned of quite a few of my Republican friends.  

      Many of the are voting for Santorum.  

      As for myself, I have decided that I will only vote for a presidential candidate who knows who they are, who supports basic ideas like the Civil Rights Act, who has a demonstrated track record of personal ethics, and who supports the rights of all Americans to serve in our military.  

      As such, I have decided not to vote.  

      Republican, MI-09, Member of the DKE Engineering Caucus, SSP: Bort

      by Bart Ender on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 05:48:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Interesting perspective (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Possiamo, jncca
        As for myself, I have decided that I will only vote for a presidential candidate who knows who they are, who supports basic ideas like the Civil Rights Act, who has a demonstrated track record of personal ethics, and who supports the rights of all Americans to serve in our military.
        So you're voting for Obama then, right? ;)
  •  TX-Redistricting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, Setsuna Mudo

    Drew another map last night with the recent D.C. court ruling (non Texas ruling) that suggested that crossover districts could be required. I got 15 districts, 10 of which are majority Hispanic. 4 (!) are African American opportunity and 1 is the Austin Hispanic opportunity district.

    The intent is to have touch point contiguity here. Grey is new Hispanic majority, the rest are maintained from current map.

    Green is the new AA opportunity district. At 31% (whites are actually the plurality here at 37%) they'll dominate the Democratic primary which will ensure them the general. Blue is majority Hispanic.

    22, Nice Calm Burkean Post-Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Childhood), TX-21 (School), TX-10 (Home); SSP: wmayes

    by wwmiv on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 05:35:25 AM PST

  •  WI-Redist: What is the GOP scared of? (7+ / 0-)

    The Wisconsin GOP is refusing to release more documents:

    "the Republicans are trying to withhold the 84 documents because they were between counsel for lawmakers and staff who drew the maps."  To me, this suggests that these would be as juicy as the secrecy pledges.

    All Wisconsin, All the Time, Social Democrat, currently NY-22 (College), WI-05 (Home)

    by glame on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 06:01:20 AM PST

  •  Quinnipiac finding "right to work" polling well... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, Setsuna Mudo Ohio with 55% support.  Of course, if you phrased the question the way Quinnipiac did, then I can see the high level of initial support.

    Still, you never want start out from behind.  If this issue makes it on the ballot for 2012, we'll have some work to do.


    by LordMike on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 06:10:40 AM PST

  •  PA calendar (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo

    Today is petition filing day for all PA races except for state senate and state rep, which were extended by two days because of the un-redistricting fracas.

  •  CA-50 Darell Issa (4+ / 0-)

    He's vulnerable.

    Mainly because of scandals such as hiring a Goldman Sachs VP to write the financial regs, and the disgust with his form of pit bull politics.  He also has about a third new voters due to redistricting.

    Also, CA has a new run off system to replace political party primaries.  I'm almost tempted to pop down the 3Gs to get on the first ballot myself.

    I dropped my D affiliation last year, so I could run against partisanship.  Problem is I'm old and thin skinned, two real defects.  

  •  Gov service in DC? Surely you jest! DC=cesspool (0+ / 0-)

    how could you even think that you could make a difference.  The congress is in a deadlock for the last 2 years, and it will last for 2-4 more years.  Nothing gets done and you spend all your time dialing for dollars.

    80 % of success is JUST SHOWING UP!

    by Churchill on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 06:49:01 AM PST

  •  MI-03, Amash sounds pretty awesome (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo, R30A, dc1000
    What surprises me is that no Republican has yet decided to primary Amash, a recalcitrant dystopian who can typically be found jabbing nettles into John Boehner's buttocks.
    I have always had a weakness for recalcitrant-dystopian types.  (We favor long walks on short piers, under a full Moon that's hurtling towards the Earth.)

    But nobody's buying flowers from the flower lady.

    by Rich in PA on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 06:49:06 AM PST

  •  NC Filing Opened Yesterday (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo, sapelcovits

    NC-2 Clement F Mummo (R)
    NC-3 Walter Jones (R-Inc)
    NC-4 David Price (D-Inc)
    NC-6 Billy Yow (R)
    NC-8 Larry Kissell (D-Inc)
    NC-8 Richard Hudson (R)
    NC-9 Michael Shaffer (R)
    NC-10 Patrick McHenry (R-Inc)

    In NC-6, Billy Yow is challenging 30-year incumbent Howard Coble in the GOP primary. Yow finished second to Coble in 2010 and is hoping redistricting will make Coble vulnerable. Yow sounded like your typical teahadist nutcase on the radio this morning.

    NC-6 is apparently my new district, so I have a keen interest in this one.

    Governor Bill Faison (D)
    Lt Gov Linda Coleman (D)

    State Senate (50 seats) - Dems filed for 10 seats, Republicans for 18 seats, and 1 Libertarian.

    State House (120 seats) - Dems filed for 36 seats, Republicans for 56.

  •  Something I missed in the Mitt op-ed: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Setsuna Mudo, blueonyx, itskevin

    Apparently, he said that it was wrong for the administration to help GM and Chrysler and favors that they should have guided through bankruptcy by themselves.  Of course, the way the two companies where headed, they would have much more likely come undone.

    "Managed bankruptcy may sound like a death knell. But in fact, it is a way for a troubled company to restructure itself rapidly, entering and leaving the courtroom sometimes in weeks or months instead of years, and then returning to profitable operation... By the spring of 2009, instead of the free market doing what it does best, we got a major taste of crony capitalism, Obama-style."
    Also, I get the idea that Goddard really does not like Romney.

    Sh*t politicians say: "I'm Pete 'Spend It Not' Hoekstra and I approve this message." -'Police State' Pete

    by KingofSpades on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 06:57:28 AM PST

    •  Well managed bankruptcy (6+ / 0-)

      Is something Mitt probably has more experience with than most.  I guess I'm just not sure he really wants to bring up the Bain experience with any specifics though...

      "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

      by rdw72777 on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 07:01:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I Struggle To See How GM and Chrysler..... (3+ / 0-)

      ...could have emerged from bankruptcy the way the airlines did.  Their supply chain would have gone into bankruptcy along with them and the resulting black hole would have made it hard for shareholders in the company to justify resurrecting the companies given the surging foreign competitors.  It's easy in hind-sight for bailout opponents to talk about how they would have managed bankruptcies more efficiently that the bailout the industry ended up getting, but the mathematical realities of the auto industry in 2009 make that a pie-in-the-sky hindsight 20/20

      •  It's beyond pie-in-the-sky hindsight (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Setsuna Mudo, KingofSpades

        it's just insanity.  Even if you just factor in one item (pensions) of the trickle on effect you can see it was going to be the govt stepping in.  I can't imagine just the pension cost if the bankruptcies had happened and cause the trickle down effect to supply chain you mention.

        But, what else can Mitt do, admit he was wrong?  LOL

        "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

        by rdw72777 on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 07:35:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  On The Topic Of Pensions..... (5+ / 0-)

          If the bankruptcies of GM and Chrysler led to the companies dumping their pension liabilities onto the Pension Guaranty Corporation, I suspect the cost liabilities on taxpayers would have been considerably higher than the cost of the bailouts.

          •  You suspect? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Setsuna Mudo, KingofSpades

            You can be certain that is exactly the case.  I mean when you consider the industry and related industries/suppliers are known for having significant pension obligations, there's almost no doubt that this is the case.

            I'm sure somewhere someone modeled this out; even the most optimistic assumptions would have made it more expensive to not do the bailout.  I mean heck Chrysler ended up being majority owned for a time by a union due to pension obligations, didn't it? (Sure now Fiat has majority control but there was a time when the union did I think).

            "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

            by rdw72777 on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 07:55:42 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah (0+ / 0-)

        Also, I may not be an expert on bankruptcy or economics, but it seemed at the time that GM and Chrysler's management had their heads in the sand.

        Sh*t politicians say: "I'm Pete 'Spend It Not' Hoekstra and I approve this message." -'Police State' Pete

        by KingofSpades on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 08:22:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Let's ask FOX News! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, sawolf, sapelcovits

      29, (new) MA-7, Unenrolled

      by Marcus Graly on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 08:04:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bales not bails (0+ / 0-)

    Bail something means helping it

    Baling something means deserting or leaving it

    I know this battle is over, but words do have meaning

  •  Kucinich's demeanor (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bumiputera, tommypaine

    in that entire debate was bored and condescending. And he not only said he never claimed he would run in another state, he also said, when challenged as to why voters in Ottawa County (location of the David-Besse nuclear power plant) never saw him, "I do my work in Washington D.C." That certainly will contribute to the rampant perception that Dennis is focused on loftier things than the needs and concerns of the people in his district — his #1 liability. He's not winning the March 6 primary.

    Take the "Can't(or)" out of Congress. Support E. Wayne Powell in Va-07.

    by anastasia p on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 08:26:59 AM PST

    •  I don't see how he manages to win... (0+ / 0-)

      Some analyst said he needs 60% of Lorain County to win and that just ain't happening.  Kaptur is simply much better known out there, having served Northwest and North Central Ohio for a long time.  Plus, she's not as.... ummm... eccentric.


      by LordMike on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 12:25:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hey, take it easy on Supervisor Steve Bennett (0+ / 0-)

    He's a popular and effective county supervisor, he only has to run for office every four years and he's got a campaign fund surplus that doesn't mean he has to spend half his time fund raising.

    Why should he give up a job he's good at to go be a nobody in a political mad house where he'd be running for re-election every two years, and constantly fending off money from lobbyists.?

    The other issue is that California now has an "open" primary. Everybody competes in the same race in June, and the top two vote-getters face off in November.

    Two of the four Democrats are insignificant. But David Pollock is younger than Bennett, well-qualified, and has a better handle on national issues. So splitting the Democratic vote is a real concern.

    California's fiscal crisis has put a lot of pressure on local governments. I praise Steve Bennett for staying where he can do the most good.

    Now the risk of having two Republicans in the November run-off is virtually nil. But this illustrates the fallacy of the open primary. In the future, candidates are going "self-primary" themselves in just this way, and the decisions will be made behind closed doors, rather than by the voters.

    Have you noticed?
    Politicians who promise LESS government
    only deliver BAD government.

    by jjohnjj on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 08:59:23 AM PST

  •  West Will Be Primaried (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Robert Crowder, a five-term Sheriff of Martin County, has announced that he will run against Allen West in FL-18.

    Citing his 50 years in the area (and by comparison, West's carpetbagger run), he believes he has a chance in the Republican primary.

    At least West will be forced to spend (even more) of his campaign funds for a primary.

    A fool will lose tomorrow reaching back for yesterday.

    by kansasr on Tue Feb 14, 2012 at 12:50:41 PM PST

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