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Leading Off:

FL-16: Much of the grey cloud that hangs over Republican Rep. Vern Buchanan's head has to do with the House Ethics Committee pursuing him over campaign finance violations, and indeed on Wednesday, the panel voted 6-0 to expand their ongoing investigation because "there is substantial reason to believe that Representative Buchanan attempted to influence the testimony of a witness in a proceeding before the FEC in violation" of federal law and congressional rules. The full report is available here (PDF). The picture looks pretty bad for ol' Vern, and remember, this is on top of a separate House ethics inquiry into Buchanan's allegedly incomplete personal financial disclosure and further on top of a joint FBI/IRS probe into his business dealings and campaign finances.

But that's still not all: Buchanan is also getting a roasting in the local media over a topic that may be more resonant to everyday news viewers: thousands of purportedly fraudulent transactions at the network of auto dealerships that Buchanan owns. Consumer advocates point to former employees and customers who've allegedly forged signatures on loan docs and falsified loan application data, all in the interest of closing more deals. (David Nir & David Jarman)


FL-Sen: After his recent endorsement of no-hoper Greg Sowards in the New Mexico Senate GOP primary (against establishment pick Heather Wilson), I had hopes that Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul might have rediscovered his rebellious streak. But no luck: Paul's backing frontrunner Connie Mack down in Florida.

IN-Sen: Richard Mourdock apparently only has one setting—"primary election mode"—and there seems to be no off position on that switch:

"I have a mindset that says bipartisanship ought to consist of Democrats coming to the Republican point of view," Mourdock said on Fox.
In other news, here's some newly-released footage of a Mourdock campaign event from February where he reveals that he'd like to see the 17th Amendment (the one that allows voters to directly elect Senators) be repealed. (A transcript of his remarks is available here.)

And in the post-mortem department, it's worth wondering: would Mourdock have won the Indiana Senate primary without a big assist from the Club for Growth and other Beltway meddlers? His 61-39 margin suggests he still might have, just based on his ground game and Richard Lugar's inability to readjust to the fundamentals of the 21st century GOP. Nevertheless, their ads had to have helped, and here's some interesting background from Roll Call's Shira Toeplitz on Mourdock and the Club's clumsy initial attempts to woo each other and the way they eventually fell into a groove together. (James L & David Jarman)

TX-Sen: A right-wing group supporting Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in the GOP primary, the Conservative Republicans of Texas, has released a new poll from Dresner Wickers Barber Sanders which purports to show their guy with an enormous 51-16 lead over former state Solicitor General Ted Cruz. (Former Dallas mayor Tom Leppert is at 7 and former ESPN talking head Craig James is at 2.) Dewhurst needs to clear 50% to avoid a runoff, and I guess this survey is trying to argue that he'll do just that, but almost all other polling has shown the race considerably tighter (albeit with Dewhurst in the lead).

But in a last-ditch effort to keep Dewhurst from getting past that 50% hurdle, the Club for Growth is spending $1 million to run an ad against "moderate tax-raising Dewhurst" in the state's three largest markets. You can watch the spot at the link. (David Jarman)

WI-Sen: Huh, is this for real? "Conservative businessman" Eric Hovde, who only entered the GOP primary for this open seat Senate race back in March, is out with an internal poll by North Star Opinion Research (May 6-8, likely GOP voters), showing him trailing ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson by just 30-27. Ex-Rep. Mark Neumann is in third with 23%, while state Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald trails the pack at 10%. Hovde has put $1.5 million into media buys in recent weeks, and it looks like his money may be having a real impact here. (James L)


WI-Gov: Joshua Spivak of the Recall Elections blog has some thoughts on voter turnout in Tuesday night's gubernatorial primaries and what it might augur for the June general election. To me, what stands out most is that there were 670,278 total votes in the hotly contested Democratic primary, while an almost equal number, 646,458, were cast in the meaningless GOP primary. The fact that Republican voters decided to show up en masse and vote for Scott Walker anyway, even though there was no reason to, is a troubling sign to me.


AZ-08: The NRCC is upping the ante in the special election in the Tucson-area 8th to replace Gabby Giffords. They've thrown in another $300K in ad buys to bring their total spent to $600K. (The DCCC has spent $473K, while the House Majority PAC will also step in with another $340K.) Based on the escalating arms race here, I think both sides are probably seeing some very tight internal polling. (David Jarman)

AZ-09: It sounds like the situation over Andrei Cherny's appalling flyers from his decade-ago run for Assembly in California is getting pretty hot. After initially defending his poor judgment in distributing those racially inflammatory mailers, Cherny offered a bogus, half-hearted "apology":

"I regret the campaign flier in question was sent out by my 2002 legislative campaign. The facts in it were accurate, but the photo chosen was unfortunate and I understand why some people were offended by it."
That mealy-mouthed b.s. wasn't going to assuage anyone, and now Cherny's two opponents in the Democratic primary, Kyrsten Sinema and David Schapira, have issued a joint statement "calling on Andrei Cherny to stop his Karl Rove-styled attacks and asking him to join us in running an issue-focused campaign." The flyers, though, are almost ancillary. Sinema and Schapira both accuse Cherny of running a dirty negative campaign and claim:
Cherny has distributed unsigned memos filled with false attacks on his opponents, distributed those false attack memos to right-wing publications (including the odious Washington Free Beacon), sent misleading emails attacking both of his primary opponents, and had his staff and surrogates tweet the articles his campaign has generated with these false attacks.
CA-15: This long look at Dem Rep. Pete Stark's faltering re-election campaign in The National Journal isn't especially newsy, but it does show that the Beltway media is finally taking note of the race between Stark and his Democratic opponent, Dublin City Councilman Eric Swalwell. There is one new detail at the very end of the piece, though: The anti-incumbent Campaign for Primary Accountability says this contest is "at the top" of its watch list and that they've "been paying very close attention." As we noted the other day, the CPA doesn't always come through when they target a race, but if they do here, that would be a big difference-maker for Swalwell. They probably want to wait until November, though, since both Stark and Swalwell are likely to emerge in the June top-two primary.

CA-26: Democratic Assemblywoman Julia Brownley is getting help from some high places: Both Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer just endorsed her campaign. EMILY's List is also launching a direct mail blitz targeting women voters on Brownley's behalf. As you know, Brownley has the difficult task of securing a spot in June's all-party top-two primary, with one Republican, one ex-Republican independent, and four Democrats (including herself) on the ballot.

IL-10: This piece in Politico is headlined "Republican Rep. tries to save Planned Parenthood," but it could just as well be titled, "Republican Rep. tries to save self." GOP freshman Bob Dold!, redistricted into a seat that went for Barack Obama by a 63-36 margin, is going against type in an attempt to hang on, introducing a go-nowhere bill called the "Protecting Women's Access to Health Care Act." It's disappointing to see that representatives from Planned Parenthood participated in Dold's press conference, since he's utterly powerless and the only way to actually protect Planned Parenthood is to help Democrats retake the House.

NC-13: The man who won the Democratic primary to replace retiring Rep. Brad Miller may or may not actually end up on the ballot in November. Charles Malone, a 64 year-old equal employment opportunity officer at the state Department of Natural Resources, previously said that he would drop out of the race due to health problems. However, he says that his health has improved and he's reconsidering the campaign, but is willing to defer to another candidate if North Carolina Dems can find a viable replacement. In any event, Republicans are heavily favored in this district after gerrymandering pushed Miller to the exits. (James L)

NJ-09: It sounds like things got nice and heated at a debate earlier this week between Reps. Steve Rothman and Bill Pascrell, though what I like most about the writeup is how often both guys used the word "progressive" to describe themselves (or bludgeon each other). In addition to the usual volleys between the two, Pascrell also claimed Rothman had told "lies" about him and added, "Third party people have said these are false." This is apparently a reference to Rothman saying that Pascrell "voted to eliminate all estate taxes for billionaires," but as PolitiFact notes:

Pascrell voted in June 2000 for a bill to gradually repeal the federal estate tax.
Oh, but wait. It's PolitiFact, so of course they nevertheless manage to rate Rothman's statement as "Mostly False." According to PolitiFact (which is opposed to the practice of politics), because Pascrell later flip-flopped on the estate tax, Rothman's not allowed to call him out for the poor judgment that led to his original vote to repeal it. Ah PolitiFact: They make my head hurt so much because they always make me want to tear my hair out.

Other Races:

Ocean City, NJ: A guest entry from none other than Daily Kos Featured Writer Adam Bonin:

J-WOWW and The Situation are as likely to find themselves down the beach in Ocean City as they are a library. Since its founding in 1879, the self-proclaimed "America's Favorite Family Resort" has banned the sale of alcohol within its borders. Local restaurateurs, tired of seeing business go elsewhere, placed a modest referendum on Tuesday night's ballot that would allow patrons to bring their own alcohol to dinner. Voters rejected the proposal by a 3,137 to 1,425 margin, however, leaving the town as dry as its beach's sand on a ninety-degree day.
OH HB194: Well this is pretty crazy. Last year, Ohio Republicans passed a restrictive election law known as HB194 which, among other things, would reduce the period for early voting and make it harder for voters to obtain absentee ballots. A group called Fair Elections Ohio succeeded in gathering enough signatures to put the measure before voters for a possible repeal this fall... but rather than face defeat, Republicans are instead trying to repeal the law themselves, via the legislature!

Democrats, however, are calling shenanigans, saying that it's a repeal in name only, because some provisions included in HB194 were separately re-passed in other legislation. Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted nevertheless says he thinks the "people's veto" measure should not appear on the November ballot, but the Fair Elections folks are vowing to fight to ensure that the repeal vote does take place. It sounds like this will all end up in court soon enough.

Grab Bag:

Chamber of Commerce: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is blasting out a new set of ads in four Senate races and 17 House contests. All but one (the spot in favor of GA-12 Dem Rep. John Barrow) is either pro-Republican or anti-Democrat. No one seems to be reporting how much the Chamber is spending overall, though. You can watch all of the ads at the link, and here's the full target list:

Senate: FL-Sen (anti-Sen. Bill Nelson), HI-Sen (pro-Linda Lingle), MO-Sen (anti-Sen. Claire McCaskill), OH-Sen (anti-Sen. Sherrod Brown)

House: FL-09 (anti-Alan Grayson), FL-22 (anti-Lois Frankel), GA-12 (pro-Rep. John Barrow), IL-12 (pro-Jason Plummer), IL-17 (pro-Rep. Bobby Schilling), MI-01 (pro-Rep. Dan Benishek), MI-06 (pro-Rep. Fred Upton), MN-08 (pro-Rep. Chip Cravaack), NY-01 (anti-Rep. Tim Bishop), NY-18 (pro-Rep. Nan Hayworth), NY-19 (pro-Rep. Chris Gibson), NY-21 (anti-Rep. Bill Owens), NY-24 (pro-Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle), NY-25 (anti-Rep. Louise Slaughter), NY-27 (anti-Rep. Kathy Hochul), OH-06 (pro-Rep. Bill Johnson), RI-01 (pro-Brendan Doherty)

Ad Watch:

• The ads are starting to come at a faster clip, so here's another day's roundup of the new spots. You can see the ads at their respective links:

MA-Sen: Scott Brown tries to see how many times he cram "independent" (including one "unpredictably independent") into one 30-second ad. Believe it or not, it's the first one from his campaign (though he's run radio ads before).

MT-Sen: Republican Rep. Denny Rehberg is also out with his campaign's first ad, although he's late joining a battle that's already been going on for a while between Dem Sen. Jon Tester and American Crossroads. Rehberg's ad is a mostly-negative spot hitting Tester on raising taxes and congressional pay.

MT-Gov: In the wake of frontrunner Rick Hill getting on the airwaves in the GOP gubernatorial primary in Montana, his two most credible opponents, Corey Stapleton and Neil Livingstone, are also both out with ads, and both are claiming bigger buys than Hill's (no specific numbers, though). Both are talk-to-the-camera intro spots, though they manage to get in some digs at outgoing Dem Gov. Brian Schweitzer.

WI-Gov: With the ink on Tom Barrett's Dem nomination still damp, two new ads are rolling out. One is an anti-Barrett spot from the RGA, complaining about taxes and unemployment in Milwaukee being up. The other is a pro-recall spot from the PCCC, a minute-long spot that tries to re-evoke feelings from the protests of last year, trying to ramp up Dem enthusiasm back to those earlier levels. (The PCCC buy is $30K, all in the Madison market.)

(David Jarman)

Independent Expenditures:

TX-Sen: It's pretty small ball for a state as big as Texas, but the David Dewhurst-backing Conservative Renewal PAC is spending $50K on a cable TV buy opposing Tom Leppert and Ted Cruz in the GOP primary.

CA-26: The Dem-aligned House Majority PAC is upping their play in this open seat race with $22K in direct mail against Republican-turned-Independent Linda Parks. (See also CA-26 item above.)

CA-31: The National Association of Realtors is putting some serious muscle behind GOP Rep. Gary Miller, with a $396K TV buy and $37K in web advertising on his behalf (on top of $118K spent on mailers in April). Meanwhile, a group calling themselves the Inland Empire Taxpayers For Jobs has filed a pair of expenditures, most of which are for direct mail in support of Miller's GOP challenger, state Sen. Bob Dutton, to the tune of about $50K.

ID-02: Interestingly, the American Dental Association is putting $28K into direct mail on GOP Rep. Mike Simpson's behalf in advance of the state's May 15th primary. (Simpson won his 2010 primary with an unspectacular 58% of the vote against a fractured field, and faces a rematch from underfunded teabagger Chick Heileson.)

KY-04: Wow. The Liberty For All Super PAC just dropped a $543K ad buy on behalf of Lewis County judge-executive Tom Massie. Amazingly, the libertarian-oriented PAC is financed mainly by a single source: John Ramsey, a 21 year-old college student at the University of Texas in Austin, who inherited a significant investment portfolio from his banker grandfather.

(James L)

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Thu May 10, 2012 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Kansas (7+ / 0-)

    42-55 disagree with the president on gay marriage.

    Note that McCain won 56-42 in Kansas. Suggests a wash.

    "There are a lot of reasons not to elect me." Mitt Romney (R-All Over The Map)

    by conspiracy on Thu May 10, 2012 at 05:10:15 AM PDT

  •  So Which WV Counties Did Keith Judd Win? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    For a full day now I've been searching every website on the internet for this information but only coming up with generic references to Judd winning X amount of counties (some say it's seven, others eight, others ten...they can't get even that straight).  Will someone tell me or link me to the Keith Judd counties before my head explodes?

  •  Initial jobless claims down again (10+ / 0-)

    This data is more important than anything in the news right now.

    "There are a lot of reasons not to elect me." Mitt Romney (R-All Over The Map)

    by conspiracy on Thu May 10, 2012 at 05:30:36 AM PDT

  •  OH-Sen, OH-Pres: Obama up 45-44, Sherrod up 46-40 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    SurveyUSA poll: Link

    Obama approval 49/48, Romney fave 35/37.

    56% have no opinion of Portman.

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

    by Setsuna Mudo on Thu May 10, 2012 at 05:51:49 AM PDT

  •  Obama 47-38 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pollbuster, itskevin, askew

    "There are a lot of reasons not to elect me." Mitt Romney (R-All Over The Map)

    by conspiracy on Thu May 10, 2012 at 05:53:46 AM PDT

  •  Tim Holden (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    andgarden, itskevin, stevenaxelrod, askew

    just voted for a measure reinforcing DOMA. Don't let the door hit your ass on the way out, asshole. (Maybe this means he's running for statewide office in the future? Or is he just that big of a douchetrain?)

    22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

    by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:29:59 AM PDT

    •  Other unforgivable(?) votes (5+ / 0-)

      Jerry Costello - he's retiring and probably not running statewide. Asshole.

      Dan Lipinski - but seriously, is anyone surprised?

      Mike Ross - I think he's running statewide in 2014, so I'll suck it up and try to overlook it.

      Heath Shuler - ugggggh. I guess he's running again in the future. Young after all.

      Republicans voting against:

      Bono Mack (CA-36)
      Hanna (NY-22) - member of LGBT Equality Caucus
      Hayworth (NY-18) - has a gay son, recently joined LGBT Equality Caucus
      LaTourette (OH-14) - woah, did anyone see this coming?
      Ros Lehtinen (FL-27)
      Terry (NE-02) - same reaction as to LaTourette

      "Social moderate" Bob Dold!, of course, voted for it. What an asshole. Tear him to pieces, Brad Schneider. Expose him for the right-winger he really is.

      22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

      by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:34:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the only even potentially (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ArkDem14, bumiputera, askew

        vulnerable Republican who missed the vote was Reichert (WA-08). Every other Republican present besides the ones I listed voted yes. So that includes a bunch of blue district Reps like Joe Walsh (IL-08, little surprise) and Ann Marie Buerkle (NY-24).

        the PA fauxderates (Dent, Meehan, Gerlach, Fitzpatrick) voted for it too. How on earth do they dupe SEPA voters into believing that they are moderate?

        22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

        by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:37:16 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  not everyone has a consistent voting record (0+ / 0-)

          even Bill Nelson for instance voted for the notorious "Dannemeyer Bill" in 1988 which would require that all AIDS patients would have their medicals history in public domain.

          also known as "AquarianLeft" on RedRacingHorses

          by demographicarmageddon on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:48:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Ugh, but to be fair (0+ / 0-)

            1988 was a very different time, in terms of the perceived threat of AIDS, general understanding of it, progress (or lack of progress) made in combating it, and tolerance toward LGBT and alternative lifestyles in general.   In the 1980s, Congress overruled Washington, DC measures removing restrictions on consensual, private sexual conduct and requiring Georgetown University to sanction pro-LGBT organizations.  Even the GOP House won't do that today.

            So I think a statute of limitations-type or "things have changed" defense is a good explanation here.

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

            by Mike in MD on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:39:26 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  LaTourette and Terry have both had affairs (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        so maybe they know a lot about marriage?

        19, D, new CA-18 (home) new CA-13 (college). Economic liberal, social libertarian, fiscal conservative. -.5.38, -3.23 Check out my blog at

        by jncca on Thu May 10, 2012 at 11:01:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  that would be amazing if true (0+ / 0-)

          given the 5 bajillion Republicans who cheat on their spouses and still have a holier-than-thou attitude towards gays.

          22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

          by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 01:25:05 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Ross is probably running for Governor (0+ / 0-)

        in 2014, but I think Dustin McDaniel will thwomp him. The Beebe machine is all for McDaniel.

        24, Practical Progressive Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Gregg for Governor! Donnelly for Senate! Mullen for Congress!

        by HoosierD42 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 03:45:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  What vote? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      And yes, he's that big of a douchetrain.

      I don't believe he's running for governor in 2014; my assumption remains that's Rob McCord's nomination for the taking.

  •  Want to call your attention to TX-34 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The place is jumpin'

    I'm going to do a post about it from the perspective of a DA being indicted for extortion.

    People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

    by hannah on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:30:16 AM PDT

  •  NJ Senate: Menendez up by 9 (6+ / 0-)

    "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

    by Paleo on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:33:46 AM PDT

  •  It's my sense that instinct-driven people (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    are groupists and fans.  While they are creatures of habit, popularity and being in the in-group is important.  So, if the choice is being left out or left behind and joining up, the latter may well win.

    Marriage, any kind, has been increasingly un-popular. 51% of adult Americans are not single.  So, being against gay marriage was just part of a trend. If gays can get married and swing the married percentage the other way, lots of other people may suddenly join in.

    Marriage is an obligation.  When obligations are involved, there has to be some reward for carrying them out.  Social approbation counts. By focusing on marriage as a privilege for just some people, we inadvertently not only ignored the obligation aspect, but failed to appropriately honor the people who do it.  Privilege and status are doubly dubious because they lead us to ignore actual achievements.

    People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

    by hannah on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:39:26 AM PDT

  •  Good news in Washington (12+ / 0-)

    anti-gay organizers only have 70,000 signatures to put gay marriage on the ballot. The cutoff is 120,577 signatures, with 150,000 being the recommended goal in order to survive inevitable signature challenges. So far, they've only been using volunteers to gather signatures - they say they're considering using paid gatherers soon

    however, the deadline is June (not sure exactly when - maybe just the beginning of the month?) so they are running out of time. great news for us.

    22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

    by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:40:42 AM PDT

  •  thin probes vs. wide probes. No vaginal ones? (0+ / 0-)

    Bob Dold made three mistakes.
    a. he signed on to the TeaBuggerer express without thinking (which I believe is a requirement for membership)
    b. redistricting is a fact.
    c. his numbers are SO bad that even his campaign manager could explain his problem without breaking out the colored crayolas.

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:45:47 AM PDT

  •  Mourdock might be...right? (0+ / 0-)

    Huh, I actually don't completely disagree with Mourdock. He isn't inaccurate. The Senate was initially intended to represent the states, so it would make sense to have those Senators elected by the the state houses instead of the people.

    I have nothing to say.

    by calistan on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:47:29 AM PDT

    •  well yes it was initially intended to do that (8+ / 0-)

      the point of a constitutional amendment is to include provisions that were not included in the original Constitution.

      More importantly, saying "he wants to take away the right of the people to vote!" just sounds crazy, and that's more the point here.

      22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

      by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:55:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  So you're saying elected senators can't represent (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dc1000, James Allen

      their states?

      "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

      by Paleo on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:57:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Strict constructionists can't have it both ways!! (0+ / 0-)

      A lot of things have changed in our US Constitution.  The founding fathers knew that the document had to be able to grow and evolve with the times, but they did make it fairly difficult to change it.  The first ten amendments, however, came out pretty early on.  

      The Constitution also said that only white males, over the age of 21, who owned property, could vote.  If Mourdock pointed this out, he was be correct, but, would he agree with this as being a good idea now?  More importantly, do you think that only white males over the age of 21 who own property should be allowed to vote?  

      These people that call themselves strict constructionists, who want to go only with the "original intent" of the founding fathers, fail to concede that the Constitution was designed to grow and evolve, otherwise it never would have last for the over 200 years it has now been in existence.  If  these strict constructionists been around in the early days of our republic, would they have been against the first ten amendments, including the 2nd amendment, you know, the one about guns?

      •  Actually the constiution doesn't say any of that (0+ / 0-)

        Limited suffrage was the practice at the time of the constitution's enactment, but it was not codified into the document. The later amendment merely prohibit the right to vote from being denied to people on various bases.  The property requirements, for example, fell without any amendment.

        29, (new) MA-7, Unenrolled

        by Marcus Graly on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:43:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That doesn't matter even slightly (5+ / 0-)

      Americans rejected that thinking by enacting the 17th Amendment.  There is zero willingness among the American people to revisit that.

      And only fringe extremists would repeal direct popular election of Senators.

      So it's a fair hit.

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

      by DCCyclone on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:00:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  definitely a probe that's heating up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    James Allen
    thousands of purportedly fraudulent transactions at the network of auto dealerships that Buchanan owns.

    slutty voter for a "dangerous president"; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Sciant terra viam monstrare." 政治委员, 政委!

    by annieli on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:47:51 AM PDT

  •  I find Larry Sabato (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    James Allen, askew

    incredibly irritating.

    Some analysts have been making the case that 2012 is going to turn decisively one way or the other -- perhaps evolving into a 2008-style margin for Democrats or Republicans.

    Maybe they are right, but every objective piece of evidence so far suggests that this election will be quite close and highly competitive for the presidency, Senate and, to perhaps a lesser extent, House.

    It's not 2008 anymore. There are contradictory trade winds blowing hard, some lifting President Obama, and others Mitt Romney.

    Meanwhile, it is tempting to give the same rating to the Republican incumbent commonly thought to be most vulnerable in this cycle: Sen. Scott Brown of Massachusetts. That's because Brown is a steady, cagey campaigner, and his opponent -- liberal favorite and consumer protection advocate Elizabeth Warren -- has had a terrible couple of weeks. After stories emerged about her being listed as a minority at Harvard (she is reportedly 1/32nd Native American), Warren made a clumsy gaffe: "I still have a picture on my mantel and it is a picture my mother had before that -- a picture of my grandfather. And my Aunt Bea has walked by that picture at least a 1,000 times remarked that he -- her father, my Papaw -- had high cheekbones like all of the Indians do." If the 2012 election has a "Macaca" moment -- referring to the infamous incident from ex-Sen. George Allen's (R-VA) 2006 reelection campaign -- this could very well be it.

    That said, we are keeping this race a toss-up for now.

    Do I even need to comment on this.

    "Objective evidence", when I emailed Crystal Ball Questioning Arizona's status as a Likely Republican state, while Wisconsin is only Leans Democrat, and cited up to date polling information I got a response, that was essentially, "Arizona's a conservative state. Polling doesn't matter because it's certain to go to Romney, even if it's a bit closer than last time." He never did explain how this means Wisconsin, with Obama's aggregate lead their of 12.4 percentage points, his 56% margin in 2008, and the fact that no Republican has won in a Presidential race since 1988, makes it only a lean Democrat state (I guess because it was close for both Gore and Kerry).

    So needless to say, I find it funny to talk about Objective Evidence, especially when Sabato goes around quoting the pretty discredited, at this point, pollster Rasmussen, which Nate Silver has done excellent work point out their consistent Republican bias, and others have pointed out how Rasmussen tends to work towards a Republican media message.

    He's a hack. He has North Carolina as leans Republican, despite the 4 point lead Obama held in the last two non-Rasmussen polls. I'm not even gonna start with the other junk that was horribly off in that write up.

    "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

    by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 06:57:41 AM PDT

    •  when he posted a front page (0+ / 0-)

      (and I mean front page, not in the diaries) post about potential changes to the constitution, that's when I understood that he is not someone whose opinion I valued.

      Lewis & Clark Law class of 2015

      by James Allen on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:04:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I recall that incredibly pedantic (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen

        Piece of drivel; I believe he was highlighting a new book of his. And in it, he has this idea that we need Constitutional Conventions every few decades to create new Constitutions and renew civic involvement. Oh, and that we also need to bring the draft back.

        I knew he wasn't someone whose I opinion I valued when he started talking the summer of 2009 about how Republicans were quite likely to take back the House of Representatives. It's partially his ilk that created the media narrative that depressed, to some degree, Democratic turnout; self-fulfilling prophecies and all, those as the cycle wore in, there was more evidence, but at the early point, Sabato was being purely bullish on Republicans. Recall he didn't think Democrats could pick up 15 seats in 2006 until October before the election.

        But he's no different than Chuck Todd or, these days, Charlie Cook.

        "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

        by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:10:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  But this is not a macaca moment (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Is Sabato trying to write for Drudge reports? Sure Warren's phrasing was couched in a stereotype, but she wasn't trying to mock or deride native americans, she was trying to explain a piece of colloquial family history and fumbled; none of this even mentions the fact (Sabato certainly doesn't), that Warren never claimed to be N.A. when being vouched for her position. It's a two-decade old issue that lies more with Harvard seeking to claim minority faculty that Warren lying about her ancestry.

        Just to be precise, Allen's Macaca moment is even more grossly racist when you see his comments in context:

        This fellow here over here with the yellow shirt, Macaca, or whatever his name is. He's with my opponent... Let's give a welcome to Macaca, here. Welcome to America and the real world of Virginia.
        It was rude, condescending, and stereotyped an American citizen as an immigrant, all the while deriding him as a monkey. Sabato is completely disingenuous, per usual.

        "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

        by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:20:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Even conceding Arizona, it looks like 2008 (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ArkDem14, itskevin, KingofSpades, askew

      I hereby re-post a link from fall 2008 I posted last night:

      In there, David Pluoffe is quoted as explaining OFA cared about polling only in 18 targeted states, the campaign did not care about national polling.

      Watch the states, that's all that matters.

      And the state of the states is that Obama has a clear advantage.

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

      by DCCyclone on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:20:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The two pollsters spamming (0+ / 0-)

        the National Polling message, as well, are Gallup and Rasmussen, and not only have both been terrible inaccurate and consistent of late, but both are using a tremendously restrictive LV. Gallup's model resembles 2010, the lowest turnout, the whitest, the wealthiest, the most Republican electorate in a generation. Rasmussen probably does well.

        "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

        by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:39:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I thought Gallup was still RV? n/t (0+ / 0-)
          •  I saw someone post (0+ / 0-)

            on the demographics Gallup was using and it certainly didn't look like an RV poll. Either way, national polling isn't the golden standard anymore.

            "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

            by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 10:37:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Gallup and Ras (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Gallup has been the same now for three days with Romney up 3,  maybe it's time for someone with more expertise than I to tear into the internals because they have an approval of 48 for Obama today but him only getting 44% of the vote, whi9ch makes no sense.

          I would love to know who they are polling.  Ras is a given, 3% more Republicans being polled than Demo crats and Romney up 4 today, and 5 the last two days, with who they're polling that's probably understandable, and will stabilize now for a while.

  •  Wisconsin turnout numbers (6+ / 0-)

    Re: "The fact that Republican voters decided to show up en masse and vote for Scott Walker anyway, even though there was no reason to, is a troubling sign to me."

    In order to figure out how passionate Progressives are regarding the Democratic primary Tuesday you need to look back at the most recent hotly contested Gubernatorial primary, 2002. That saw Jim Doyle, Tom Barrett, and Kathleen Falk going toe-to-toe. Tuesday's numbers were nearly double the turn out in that election.

    Also worth considering, Walker spent the last two weeks telling his sheep to get out and vote. That's why Chris Christie came to town. He told them to "send a message."

    The Republican turnout on Tuesday was only a little bit higher than the total number of Republicans who voted in the 2010 Gubernatorial primary.

    A full 12 percent of Walker's Tuesday vote came from Waukesha County, which represents only six percent of Wisconsin's population.

    One stat that's interesting is that turnout in the student precincts of Madison was substantially deflated. This could be good, because the students leave town over the next couple of weeks and it shows progressives will turn out and aren't dependent on the student population voting.

    I have nothing to say.

    by calistan on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:08:39 AM PDT

    •  interesting numbers (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I haven't heard those stats.  I also think we have a big advantage when it is time to gotv.  With all the activism in the last year, we have a huge infrastructure set up and an army ready to get people to the polls on June 5.

    •  I would still worry about students (0+ / 0-)

      This will be a close race and we will need every vote like with 2004.  The College Dems need to be barnstorming the campus about this.

      All Wisconsin, All the Time, Social Democrat, currently NY-23 (College: Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations), WI-05 (Home)

      by glame on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:11:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  RI-01 worrisome (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Outside of the Biggest Little this may not be getting a lot of attention, but inside it, I'm worried. Cicilline faces a primary fight from less-progressive businessman Anthony Gemma, and then one of them gets to face State Police's Brendan Doherty who is well-liked and well-funded. Cicilline is getting blamed (hard to sort out how appropriately) for Providence's financial debacle from his years as mayor, which is hitting us with big property tax increases. Even in blue RI, this seat could flip come November.

    •  Oh, Cicilline probably deserves (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen, bumiputera, dc1000

      most of the blame. But that's not the point. He's a legislator now, not an administrator. I'm leaning towards Gemma right now because I really don't want to risk losing this seat, but I could be convinced otherwise (especially because Gemma seems like a Grade A douche).

      22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

      by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:13:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Even with all his problems, (0+ / 0-)

      this is a strong D district.  Especially in a presidential year, I think it will be tough for the Republicans to take this.

      "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

      by Paleo on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:23:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The Republican would have to get (0+ / 0-)

        40% of Obama voters, and 100% of Romney voters to win.

        "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

        by ArkDem14 on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:26:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Ticket-splitting (0+ / 0-)

        Rhode Islanders do split tickets sometimes, and not just for people named Chafee. We had GOP Governors from 1994-2010. Former Gov. Carcieri was even narrowly re-elected in 2006, at the same time as Sheldon Whitehouse was defeating then-Sen. Lincoln Chafee and Democrats were winning pretty much everything else in sight.

        Like Sapelcovits, I'm considering voting for Gemma in the primary if Cicilline looks dead in the water. I'm not convinced that Obama's coattails will necessarily be enough to get Cicilline to the finish line.

        •  Ticket splitting has become less popular (0+ / 0-)

          now that the national GOP has gone cray cray. I think that's especially true at the federal level - some people may want to vote Republican for Gov to counteract the corrupt Dems in Smith Hill, but they certainly don't want a vote for the national Republican agenda. Doherty's strategy is "fake it till you make it" - just pretend he is a kickback to the Chafee family when he's actually quite far right.

          22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

          by sapelcovits on Thu May 10, 2012 at 09:18:56 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  CA-44: LA Times endorses Hahn (9+ / 0-)

    Not such a surprise there. But for CA-26, I was a bit surprised the Times endorsed Parks, much less anyone, but a lot of people do gush over Independents.

    26, Male, CA-24 (new CA-26), DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:14:12 AM PDT

  •  Did Buchanan get the idea from Fargo? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "Mr Lundegard, I need those VIN numbers. Good day."

    WTF!?!?!?! When did I move to the Republic of Gilead?!

    by IARXPHD on Thu May 10, 2012 at 07:50:25 AM PDT

  •  wow, just wow (4+ / 0-)

    I'm looking again at precincts in Washington County, Oregon, and as always I'm just blown away.  Precincts Kerry lost by 80 votes, and Obama won by 600.  Kerry wins by 800, Obama wins by 1700.  It just goes on and on.

    Lewis & Clark Law class of 2015

    by James Allen on Thu May 10, 2012 at 08:15:21 AM PDT

    •  Probably Find The Same in Indiana and..... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      ....the Rio Grande River Valley in Texas.  Some crazy growth spurts for Obama vs. Kerry there as well.

      •  my mother's precinct (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mark27, KingofSpades, supercereal

        Kerry lost by one vote, Obama won by 168.  The adjacent precinct Bush won by 393, Obama won by 345.  It's crazy.  Democratic-leaning areas are getting bluer, pink areas are turning blue.  It's not just a 2008 phenomenon, either.  Gore got 49% in this county, Kerry 53%, Obama 60%, and he'll probably exceed that this year.  It's not getting any whiter.  When Kulongoski narrowly won the state in 2002, he lost Washington County, when Kitzhaber more narrowly won in 2010, he won Washington County.  In 2002 Democrats only held 1 state house seat in the county, in 2012 at least three districts here are considered safe Dem, and we're likely to pick up as many as 4 districts there this year.  My mother's house district was held by a Republican until 2004.  Obama got 66% of the vote there, Kerry 58%.

        This is the very definition of an ancestrally Republican, Democratic trending county.

        Lewis & Clark Law class of 2015

        by James Allen on Thu May 10, 2012 at 09:14:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I still know nothing about Swalwell (0+ / 0-)

    Has anyone written about him?

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