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Leading Off:

NH-Gov: So we've got yet another "Bill Clinton endorses candidate who endorsed his wife in 2008" story, though this one has some contours that are worth exploring a little further. The recipient of Clinton's largesse this time is ex-state Sen. Maggie Hassan; her primary opponent, ex-state Sen. Jackie Cilley, wasn't just a run-of-the-mill Obama backer but actually endorsed him very early on, in July of 2007. That would be notable anywhere, but especially in New Hampshire, where most politicos are in the habit of being courted heavily and wait until the last minute to come off the fence. Cilley, though, stuck her neck out and took a real risk in supporting the insurgent Obama almost half a year before the primary.

Meanwhile, Hassan's actions during that campaign should not be swept under the rug— after all, Bill Clinton is returning the favor for a very specific reason. Two days before the primary, Hassan co-signed an email (along with two dozen other women prominent in New Hampshire politics) attacking Barack Obama as weak on abortion rights. The missive read in part:

"The difference between Hillary's repeatedly standing up strong on choice and Obama's unwillingness to vote 'yes' or 'no' is a clear contrast, and we believe the voters in New Hampshire deserve to know this difference. We support Hillary Clinton because she never ducked when choice was at stake."
The Clinton campaign also sent out a related mailer hitting the same message, relying on a series of votes Obama took while in the Illinois legislature where he voted "present" rather than "aye" or "nay" on bills related to reproductive rights. These attacks rightly infuriated the Obama campaign, seeing as an Illinois Planned Parenthood official had explained that the "present" votes "were part of a deliberate strategy to protect other pro-choice legislators, other than Obama, in vulnerable districts."

Not long after the primary, Hassan and two other signatories tried to heal the wounds caused by their email, concerned about lingering hard feelings. Hassan claimed she was unaware of the Illinois Planned Parenthood defense of Obama and, in reporter Alec MacGillis's phrasing, said "it was wrong for anyone to suggest that Obama was not pro-choice." Yet she nevertheless stuck to her guns:

But Hassan stood by what she said was the main point of the initial e-mail, that Clinton was the most staunchly pro-choice Democrat. "All of the leading Democratic candidates are strongly pro-choice but I think Hillary's record is unparalleled. I stand by what I signed before the election and don't think it's inconsistent with" the new e-mail stating that Obama is strongly pro-choice, Hassan said. "Everybody's going to interpret these letters and e-mails as they want to."
As Paul Harvey would say: "And now you know the rest of the story."


AZ-Sen: Damn, that's a lot of mailers. The Club for Growth is spending $416K on flyers attacking Wil Cardon and boosting his GOP primary rival, Jeff Flake. A sum this large must mean they're doing a statewide mailing.

CA-Sen: Most polls of the California Senate race that we've seen have shown Dianne Feinstein looking less indomitable than usual, only hovering around the 50% mark... but still sporting huge leads over little-known Republican rival Elizabeth Emken. And the latest poll of the race—an online survey taken by M4 Strategies for a coalition of Pepperdine University School of Public Policy and the California Business Roundtable—shows just that, with Feinstein leading 49-30. The poll also has numbers on the many propositions that California voters will face in November; click through for those. (It also has Barack Obama leading 52-33.) (David Jarman)

CT-Sen: I wish I could say I thought it would matter, but I think we've reached the point where no one really cares what Chris Shays thinks. Still, the former congressman offered up a pretty delicious serving of cat fud in a recent interview with the New Haven Register editorial board, in which he utterly lambasted GOP primary rival Linda McMahon and said he wouldn't support her if she wins the nomination. Some gems:

• "I have never run against an opponent that I have respected less—ever—and there are a lot of candidates that I've run against."

• "I thought she was embarrassingly clueless."

• "You have a candidate who is basically giving the finger to all the editorial boards."

• "I think she is a terrible candidate and I think she would make a terrible senator."

Yowza! Shays says he won't vote for Democrat Chris Murphy in the general election, but with feelings like this, perhaps he's persuadable. Anyhow, there's more at the link, including some video. Amazing stuff, really.

FL-Sen: There haven't been a lot of polls showing GOP Rep. Connie Mack beating Dem Sen. Bill Nelson—in fact, if you dial out the spazzy Rasmussen, you're left with a single Quinnipiac poll that put Mack up a single point back in May. All other surveys have had Nelson leading, until this strange new set of numbers from SurveyUSA (for WFLA-TV in Tampa), their first poll of Florida all cycle. Here, Mack is on top by an implausible 48-42 spread, and I'm not saying it's implausible simply because he's ahead. I say that because the same survey shows Obama beating Romney by a pretty fat 48-43 margin. I just find it hard to believe that Nelson could be underperforming Obama at all, let alone so badly.

MN-Sen: There hasn't been much polling of the Minnesota Senate race, on account of its snooziness, and the latest poll from SurveyUSA (taken for KSTP-TV) fit the pattern. Dem Sen. Amy Klobuchar leads state Rep. Kurt Bills by a 55-31 margin, almost identical to the 55-29 spread PPP saw in early June. However, Obama's edge over Romney has been cut down to 46-40, vs. 52-38 when SUSA last tested this contest in May. Several commenters have pointed out that SUSA is now using a likely voter model (even though it's awfully early to be doing so). That represents a switch from using registered voters in their prior poll, which probably explains Obama's drop.

MT-Sen: Remember that ad last month which touted GOP Rep. Denny Rehberg's vote against the infamous Paul Ryan budget? The spot, which led to some very uncomfortable headlines for Republicans, was ostensibly produced by the Montana GOP... but now, as Politico's Emily Schultheis points out, the situation has gotten even more awkward. That's because the $200K buy was the direct result of a half-million dollar infusion from the NRSC to the state party in the month of June. It's one thing for some random state party to make a calculated show of going rogue and attacking the Ryan plan; it's a bit more difficult to explain when the national Republican Party funds ads that rip into a seminal plank of the modern GOP.

On a related note, a new AP article shows that Rehberg failed to provide the occupation for one in seven donors in his newest fundraising report, as required by federal law. (By contrast, only 1% of Dem Sen. Jon Tester's contributors lacked employment information.) A previous AP investigation from earlier in the year "found Rehberg received about $20,000 in donations last year from three dozen lobbyists who did not disclose their occupations when they made the contributions." In response to that earlier report, Rehberg's campaign said they'd step up their compliance efforts, but obviously that hasn't been the case.

ND-Sen: Majority PAC tosses yet another $50K in against GOPer Rick Berg. I figure they're re-upping the buy on this spot a second time, which would bring them to about $184K so far.

NM-Sen: Environmental organizations have made GOP ex-Rep. Heather Wilson their number one target this year, and they just keep pouring it on. The Sierra Club is spending $19K more on mailers, while a group called Environment America, Inc. forked out $13K for canvassing on behalf of Dem Rep. Martin Heinrich.

PA-Sen: Rasmussen: Bob Casey (D-inc): 49 (48), Tom Smith (R): 38 (41).

WI-Sen: Tommy Thompson is out with a new ad hitting his chief primary rival, Eric Hovde, with a pretty decent visual gimmick. A game piece with Hovde's photo on top circles a board as the announcer explains all the dastardly things he's done to get ahead playing "the Washington game." The spot could almost have come out of a Democratic campaign, since it says the uber-wealthy Hovde "gamed the system and bet against American companies and home-owners." Whatever happened to the party of Gordon Gekko and creative destruction?

Meanwhile, Hovde's on the defensive for doing what so many rich guys who belatedly decide to turn political have done—or rather, haven't done: vote regularly. Hovde only cast a ballot twice in the last 11 elections he was registered for... in Washington, D.C., not Wisconsin. (His recent return to the Badger State is something else that his opponents are eagerly making hay of). Hovde's excuse for his shoddy record of civic participation is hilariously clueless in that 1%-er way: "I'm a person that's spent 75% of my life in an airplane, flying around the U.S., flying around the globe."

Finally, did Thompson fail to get the memo on Ted Nugent? The Nuge, who's made a lot of unwanted headlines recently, is leading a rally for Thompson this Thursday. I wonder if any reporters will ask Thompson if he agrees with Nugent that the Obama administration is "evil" and "America-hating."


WA-Gov: It's been at least a year since you've been able to access the internet in Washington without getting pummeled with Rob McKenna banner ads, but now he's finally moving over to the big-bucks world of TV advertising. The Republican gubernatorial candidate released his first ad over the weekend, managing to shoehorn introducing his family and rolling out policy proposals into a deliberately frenetic 30 seconds. (Democratic rival Jay Inslee has been airing a more leisurely 60-second ad for a few weeks now.)

The ad deluge should only intensify in the future, too, as the DGA and RGA just made big advertising moves here. The DGA reserved $1.25 million and is moving another $1 million to the labor-backed Our Washington PAC, which has already made large reservations of it own. Similarly, the RGA is going with a $1.9 million reservation for the months leading up to the election. (David Jarman)


AZ-04: The Club for Growth is shelling out $58K for mailers attacking GOP Rep. Paul Gosar. They'd previously endorsed state Sen. Ron Gould in the primary.

AZ-05: National Horizon, a new Republican super PAC, is spending $20K on a TV ad that contrasts Kirk Adams, who purportedly broke an anti-tax pledge, with his chief primary rival, ex-Rep. Matt Salmon, who followed through on an earlier term-limits pledge and didn't seek re-election after three terms in Congress.

AZ-06: Retiring Sen. Jon Kyl has cut an ad for Rep. Ben Quayle, who faces an incumbent-vs.-incumbent battle with fellow Rep. David Schweikert. The spot is mostly positive, but Kyl starts off with a dig at Schweikert, saying he's served with both men, but "David's been in politics almost as long as I have" and he thinks it's "time to turn things over to a new generation." But I think whoever wrote this script didn't realize they included a back-handed dissing of Quayle, since Kyl calls him "tougher than he looks." So he looks like a wimp? Or just like Brock Landers?

CA-47 (PDF): The DCCC is trying to push back against an internal poll from Republican Gary DeLong with one of their own. It's not clear who the pollster is—the memo just refers to "DCCC IVR Results." IVR stands for "interactive voice response," which is the fancy term for robopolling, so perhaps the D-Trip keeps a few autodialers down in the basement. Anyhow, they find Democrat Alan Lowenthal up 47-36 over DeLong, in contrast with the DeLong survey which had Lowenthal on top just 44-41. But note that this poll was in the field for just a single day and only had 259 respondents, which is super-tiny and yields a margin of error of more than ±6%.

CT-05: Democrat Chris Donovan is out with his first ad, in which he begins: "These days, some people are afraid to be called liberal or progressive"—with the message being that he clearly is not. Donovan says "I'm proud of my record" (such as "leading the fight to clean up elections" and "making millionaires pay their fair share")  and cites endorsements from the likes of SEIU and MoveOn.

But guess who is all to happy to attack Donovan for his progressive resume? That would be none other than EMILY's List, which is backing Elizabeth Esty in the primary and plans to "educate women voters" using right-wing frames. Get a load of this:

"Chris Donovan's 20 year record for Connecticut speaks for itself: exorbitant pay raises and the biggest tax hike in Connecticut history. Middle class families are paying the price."
What's particularly galling about this is that EMILY is almost certainly referring to the same thing Donovan is: the passage of a 2009 law which increased taxes on couples earning over $1 million a year. That's a massive progressive accomplishment! To go after Donovan on those grounds is just appalling.

Meanwhile, Esty is now airing her second ad, in which she takes on the issue of offshoring. Among other things, she wants to "clos[e] tax loopholes for corporations that ship jobs overseas."

MA-06: In a lengthy new piece, the Boston Globe tries to argue that Dem Rep. John Tierney "shoulda known" about the illegal gambling ring run by his brothers-in-law and abetted by his wife, but I read the whole article and I'm not seeing anything new here. There certainly isn't any evidence that Tierney did know anything about the operation, but the Globe wants to hammer him anyway, repeatedly saying things like he "had ample reason to be wary," he "had reason to be suspicious," that there's "ample reason for his critics to wonder how he could not have caught wind of it," and so forth.

It feels like the reporters are frustrated that they can't pin this on Tierney but they want him to shoulder some culpability regardless. Indeed, check out this graf buried at the end of the piece, referring to one of Tierney's brothers-in-law:

Eremian said he could prove that Tierney knew he was running a massive, illegal gambling ring and agreed to meet with a Globe reporter to review "materials" in his possession that would make the point. But he subsequently backed off on the offer. When a Globe reporter arrived at his Antigua home unannounced—greeting him at the table where he had had dinner with John Tierney and his wife on two previous occasions—Eremian refused to answer questions.
Don't get me wrong: I think the entire saga sucks for Tierney and it certainly doesn't make him look good. Indeed, I think he's in very vulnerable shape for re-election, in large part because of the constant insinuations stemming from this story. But people have been trying to nail him for having some role in his wife's sordid affairs for quite some time, and no one's managed to make the case, this piece included.

P.S. Seth Moulton, a left-leaning independent who rather implausibly claimed he was ready to swoop into the race and save the seat for Democrats now says he won't run after all. It was hard to see how Moulton would have done anything other than siphon off votes from Tierney, so I think Dems would have to consider this good news.

MI-11: Here's that Freedom's Defense Fund ad on behalf of Kerry Bentivolio we mentioned the other day. (We'd seen the size of the buy—just $20K worth of cable—but not the spot itself.) It's pretty weak stuff, arguing that Bentivolio's GOP primary rival, write-in hopeful Nancy Cassis, "bid $200,000" for a seat in Congress. That's a reference to the $200K Cassis loaned her campaign in June.

OR-04: This independent expenditure first caught our eye because it's simply from "Republican Super PAC, Inc." That's amusing enough on its own (hilariously generic-sounding, like those off-brand canned goods in the supermarket with the black and white labels). It gets more interesting in the fine print, though: the signatory on their IE report is James Bopp, one of the GOP's top election lawyers and dark money wizards. Bopp created the generically-named PAC back in May—apparently with the partial intent of probing the law's limits on unlimited individual PAC contributions—and this looks to be their first-ever expenditure.

So what's their interest in the 4th—a race that most handicappers don't regard as competitive—where longtime Democratic Rep. Peter DeFazio faces a rematch against Art Robinson, someone who might be politely described as a "character?" (He's a fringey scientist and grifterish peddler of homeschooling supplies.) The closest we could come to finding a hook that might explain the questionable decision to spend the $9,240 on radio ads for Robinson may have to do with one of the co-founders of Republican Super PAC, Inc.: RNC committeeman and fellow Oregonian Solomon Yue. Yue isn't from the 4th (he's from Polk Co.), but if he wanted to spend money in his home state, this is as close as you're going to come to finding a competitive Congressional race in Oregon this year. (David Jarman)

TX-23: The League of Conservation Voters spent big before the TX-23 Democrat primary, blasting ex-Rep. Ciro Rodriguez with over a quarter mil on mailers and TV ads. Now they're getting back in the game with the runoff just a week away, throwing down another $63K on more flyers, all in an effort to boost state Rep. Pete Gallego.

TX-33: In addition to the $150K we previously mentioned they were spending on a TV spot for Democrat Marc Veasey, the Realtors are adding in $86K on mailers, too.

Other Races:

KS-St. Sen: Conservative Republicans—including Gov. Sam Brownback, the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, and the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity—are going all-out to eliminate as many moderate Republicans in the state Senate as they can in the August 7 primary. As you may know, in Kansas politics, there's an open divide between these two wings of the GOP, and though there are more conservatives in the Senate, the moderates have long forged an alliance with minority Democrats to keep control of the chamber. Among other things, this led to an extremely bitter impasse over redistricting this year, required a federal panel to draw new lines for the state. The cons are now looking to make sure this never happens again, and they only need a few wins to do so. The linked article lists a few targeted races; keep those in mind on primary night.

Grab Bag:

California: This New York Times story on the decline and fall of the California GOP is getting a lot of play, mostly because it's on page A1 of the NYT. But if you've been reading Daily Kos Elections faithfully, you've already seen this story before: We called your attention to this Sacramento Bee article on the exact same topic back in February.

Crossroads: Karl Rove's American Crossroads super PAC files fundraising reports monthly, and given its heft, it's practically a campaign committee unto itself. The group raised $5.7 million in June and has a monster $31.5 mil cash-on-hand, despite spending $3.7 mil in that timeframe. This doesn't include money raised or spent by Crossroads GPS, the organization's "charity" arm.

Dark Money: I know nothing gets you more excited than proposed rulemaking from the IRS, but if they actually follow through on this instead of it turning into one more nothingburger, this could be a real game-changer on the campaign finance front. The IRS has confirmed that it will "consider proposed changes" to the rules on what groups organized under section 501(c)(4) can do. 501(c)(4), of course, is the bit of tax code that right-wing dark money organizations like Crossroads GPS and American Action Network are set up as, allowing them to collect undisclosed dollars (because they're "social welfare" organizations) and use them for political purposes. A more stringent prohibition on electioneering would limit the damage 501(c)(4)s can do, though the prohibition would need to limit not only actually running ads but also using 501(c)(4)s as simple conduits that pass money to Super PACs that don't have electioneering restrictions. A great example is the relationship between Crossroads GPS, where the money goes in, and American Crossroads, where the ads come out. (David Jarman)

DCCC: It's a biannual ritual: The DCCC gets antsy about members of Congress who haven't yet paid their dues for the cycle (they start at $150K and go up from there), so they leak some information to a Beltway publication in the hopes of shaming House Democrats into giving what they owe. The far more effective way would be to just give the list to us: Those of you with long memories will recall the highly successful "Use It Or Lose It" campaign from 2006, in which netroots activists directly contacted their members of Congress to ask that they meet their obligations to the D-Trip. It got a lot of positive press (click here to see some good quotes) and more importantly, it helped fill the DCCC's coffers at a time when they needed the money most. We'd be thrilled to do so again.

On a related note, here's one guy who's already stepping up even though he doesn't have to: Democrat Jared Huffman, who transferred $50K to the D-Trip at the end of June. (Credit to Greg Giroux for the catch, natch.) Huffman isn't even a member of Congress yet, but he faces a badly under-funded Republican opponent in the dark blue CA-02 and is as close to a lock as you can get. So kudos to him—and if Huffman can make a contribution like this, then certainly Dem incumbents in safe seats can pay off their dues in full.

Georgia/Texas: A week from Tuesday, Georgia will hold its primaries and Texas will conduct runoffs stemming from its long-ago primaries. That means there's a new batch of pre-election FEC reports for both states, which we've compiled at the link. However, since quarterly filings up through June 30 were recently due, these new reports only cover the period of July 1 through July 11, which means there isn't a whole lot to see here. The most notable entry belongs to businessman Rick Allen, one of the Republicans hoping to take on Dem Rep. John Barrow in the fall; he loaned his campaign $150,000.

NRSC: Check out the time-stamp on Cameron Joseph's piece about the NRSC's June fundraising: 5:16pm on Friday night. I'd call it a late Friday news dump, but the NRSC didn't even do that much. Rather, monthly fundraising reports were due at the FEC that day, and enterprising souls in the DC area can snag hard copies from the Secretary of the Senate before filings get posted online. So this was more like a late Friday news burial, since Senate Republicans only took in $4.4 mill last month, compared to $8 mil for Dems. And the DSCC has $31 mil in the bank vs. $24 mil for the GOP.

Polltopia: If you're a regular Daily Kos Elections reader, you're probably also a regular Nate Silver reader, but this weekend's piece on the "incumbent rule" is worth a read if you haven't already seen it. It's probably his most thorough piece yet on the oft-cited-yet-basically-wrong premise that an incumbent needs to poll over 50% because undecideds break toward the challenger (tell President Kerry that). Nate finds that the evidence against the "incumbent rule" may not be as strong at the presidential level as with downballot races (maybe because of the small sample size and a lot of other intervening variables), but that reversion toward the mean as the election closes is a much more pronounced trend. (Also, he confirms a trend that we definitely saw this year: that the challenger totally flails in the polls when primary season is at its most heated, and returns to form by April or so once then nomination is settled.) (David Jarman)

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Well, I wasn't keen on Nancy Pelosi (5+ / 0-)

    coming in to promote the Democratic front-runner in the 2006 primary for Congress (Carol Shea-Porter was selected in the primary and went on to take the seat in November), and I still don't think national figures should meddle in state primary elections. Elections are not popularity contests.  They're a hiring process and, especially in this case, a recommendation from William Jefferson Clinton is not helpful.

    Willard's forte = "catch 'n' cage"

    by hannah on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:12:49 AM PDT

  •  Not surprised about the Pepperdine CA-Sen poll. (0+ / 0-)

    I suspect DiFi will remain just fine this year, but she will probably end up getting about exactly what Obama ends up getting in California. It really seems like many in the state have a case of ennui with her... Except for perhaps the usual folks on the far right and the far left who can't stand her. Especially as a state that's into all kinds of "trend setting", California isn't always into rewarding incumbency.

    •  Not that the far left has anyone else to vote for. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
    •  That Pepperdine poll link (0+ / 0-)

      Those are some of the most worthless pie charts I have seen in a long while.  How is it of any use to have pie charts showing people's positions on yes or no propositions, sliced into different degrees of strength of yes or no, and then randomly distributed through the charts with colors that are not related to each other?  Why would you put Strongly Yes next to Strongly No with Leaning Yes on the OTHER SIDE of No?  That's batshit insane.

      Worse, the graphs only have the Prop numbers without any hint of which is which.  It's damned early in the election cycle and the numbers were just assigned, what, last week?  Two weeks ago?  Who the heck has them all memorized yet?

      In capitalist America, bank robs you!

      by madhaus on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:41:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Chris Donovan's (6+ / 0-)

    sin is not having a vagina. I can't stand organizations like EMILY's list who use identity politics.

    "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

    by JackND on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:32:29 AM PDT

    •  The fucked up part is (8+ / 0-)

      Esty is a a moderate Dem.  It's far more likely she'll waffle in issues that would affect women more than Donovan who is a rock solid progressive.

      This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

      by DisNoir36 on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:38:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Really, this again? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bill W, DCCyclone, kleinburger, askew

      Come on. There's a reason why we don't need official organizations to aid in electing straight white men. Need I say why?

      While they haven't always made great decisions, at least 90% of the time EMILY's List has been incredibly valuable in helping elect progressive Democratic women to Congress.

      •  Not this time. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MartyM, bear83, pademocrat

        Esty is a horrible choice for the people of CT-05.

        Especially when given the option of Donovan.  Thankfully we only have a few weeks more in which we have to tolerate this crap.

        This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

        by DisNoir36 on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:54:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I think there's a solid case (0+ / 0-)

        to be made for supporting the person that best represents the party's agenda, despite the sex and/or ethnicity usually represented by the organization in question. I don't have a dog in this fight, as I haven't paid attention to this rae and don't know anything about either candidate, but it doesn't seem out of bounds to say that Donovan, not Etsy, should get the group's backing.

        "The election of Mitt Romney and a supporting congress this November would be a...disaster for America. Think of the trainwreck that has been the Conservative government in Britain since 2010. And square it."--Brad DeLong

        by bjssp on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 04:58:34 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I generally (0+ / 0-)

      Am very grateful for Emily's List.  They do good work and help out tremendous candidates.  I understand Esty fits their criteria because she is a woman.  Donovan will win.

      27, male, gay, living and voting in IN-7. Joe Donnelly for Senate and John Gregg for Governor!

      by IndyLiberal on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 06:07:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Before you jump on that Donovan bandwagon.... (0+ / 0-)

        make sure you know that his campaign is under FBI investigation for illegal, conduit contributions in a pay-to-play scandal. I hope that progressives will not look the other way when one of their "own" is accused of FEC violations and other illegal activities.

        One of the many stories can be found here:

        The campaign's associates used a teacher, bank teller, and other persons to funnel $2500 each, illegally to the campaign. Is this the progressive you want? A man who's associates refer to working class people as "dope fiends" and "drug pushers"? Read the indictment of Braddock and pay close attention to p. 15.

        Then let me know if this is a man who should be in Congress.

  •  CT-05 (4+ / 0-)

    Is this verbiage necessary?  Usually "the likes of" has a negative connatation.

    and cites endorsements from the likes of SEIU and MoveOn.

    "Tax cuts for the 1% create jobs." -- Republicans, HAHAHA - in China

    by MartyM on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 06:40:28 AM PDT

  •  Two polls showing how the Bain strategy is working (9+ / 0-)

    Hail to the king, baby.

    by KingofSpades on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 06:53:07 AM PDT

    •  Scarborough jumped on the gallup poll (0+ / 0-)

      He was ranting about how  the Bain attacks were failing with all the panelists just  nodding their heads in agrteement. I usually don't watch him but I had a few minutes before work and as usual he had me pissed off by 7 am!

    •  GALLUP TRUMPS ALL!!! (0+ / 0-)

      Bow before Gallup's inaccurate might and beg forgiveness, mortal!!!


      by LordMike on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:21:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  One thing with these polls (0+ / 0-)

      the one says 40%, but that 40% of voters might never have been voting for him anyway, and they could have just gained an even more unfavorable view of him than before.


      20, Male, NC the best state ever! Majoring in Piano Performance.

      by aggou on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:35:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, that question is never any good (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades, itskevin

        The "more likely" and "less likely" questions, every poll for every election, always poll with answers on both sides way below the two candidates' vote shares, and a plurality or even majority always saying "makes no difference."

        And yet, attacks and personal traits and issue positions certainly matter.

        That poll question just isn't a good way to teasing it out.

        Better questions are on favorability overall, and favorability toward specific tested traits.  Romney clearly is underwater on Bain, that's without doubt.  That's why Chicago keeps attacking, and Romney had to deviate from his own master plan to air some response ads.

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

        by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:56:18 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Similarly, those who said that Bain (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Amber6541, KingofSpades, askew

        made them "more likely" to vote for Romney were almost entirely voting for him (or against Obama) to start with.  Very few voters probably thought, "Bain Capital?  Damn, that's impressive.  I was leaning to Obama before but now I'm for Mitt."

        On balance I'd say that probably not many voters have really switched their votes either way due to the Bain Capital issue.  More like it had the effect of either increasing their respect for Mitt's private business success (mostly among people who were probably pro-GOP anyway), or reinforcing doubts in their minds that he really shares or cares about the concerns of most people (the 99%, if you will) or that his administration will be anything other than the same old pro-big business and wealthy policies regularly pursued by his party, which didn't exactly filter down to all or produce lasting prosperity.

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

        by Mike in MD on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:47:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  TX-Sen: Most brutal ad of the year so far? (5+ / 0-)

    "Corrupt judges put my son in a for-profit juvenile detention center ... to make millions of dollars. Ted Cruz says his client should not have to pay, that the IRS is the victim, and not the kids here. My son came out of there, and he took a gun and shot himself in the heart. That's what my son's life was worth, $500. Ted Cruz should be absolutely ashamed of himself. I don't know how he can sleep at night."

    •  Not a good ad unless... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, dc1000, Chachy

      ...the story itself got saturation news coverage, and the general public knows about it.

      The cut video clips are jarring, no natural transitions, and the bits of pieces of info sow confusion on what this story is.  I can't follow it from watching the ad.

      It's obviously heartbreaking, but I can't make sense of exactly what happened, or why Ted Cruz was responsible.

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

      by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:13:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dc1000, DCCyclone

        It is a jarring, emotional ad, but I'm not really sure what Ted Cruz had to do with this, other than being a lawyer involved in some aspect of it.  But it shows that this race has gotten ugly, ugly, ugly.

      •  Don't disagree with you (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DCCyclone, bumiputera

        Brutal does not necessarily mean effective (in fact it's often the opposite).  It's a confusing spot and reeks of desperation.

        •  The editing was done horribly (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          The Caped Composer

          Whoever chose the interview clips and spliced them together, I hope the Romney campaign hires them because this was the worst job I've ever seen!  Really, it's as if they had a high school summer intern do it...if it was an adult, I hope it was a volunteer.  I can't imagine someone getting paid to do what was done here.  And I'm shocked there was so little quality control that this is going on the air, no filters to address its disastrous problems.

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

          by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:37:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I think the (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bill W, atdnext, bear83

    whole piece is marred by your first entry on NH, which seems to be about settling old scores from the 2008 primary.  For example, I also wrote about Obama's seeming desire to be vague on the same issue in February of 2008 here.  I cited sources for my opinion and provided analysis that I still think was mostly right.  You do great work.  That first part seems petty and way beneath your usual standard of excellence.

    The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

    by mikepridmore on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:00:05 AM PDT

    •  I agree. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mikepridmore, bear83

      And, to tell you the truth, I've never really understood how the "vote present" strategy was supposed to work.  Seems to me that the anti-choicers would attack a legislator just as vociferously for a "present" vote as they would for a "no" vote.  The effect was the same, wasn't it?

      •  My understanding is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bill W

        that this technique of voting "present" is widely used to avoid making potentially controversial votes.  Like you, I'm not sure it is really effective.

        The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

        by mikepridmore on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:15:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The Strategy (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        askew, Satya1, Amber6541, NMLib

        The point is that that WAS the strategy adopted by the Pro-Choice groups in Illinois, and one on which State Senator Obama aided them. If you disagree with the strategy, your argument is with the Illinois Pro-Choice groups, not Sen. Obama. If he had declined to join in the strategy, he would have been justly criticized for putting his own personal priorities ahead of the need, as the Illinois Pro-Choice groups saw it, to protect vulnerable Pro-Choice  legislators by adopting that strategy.

      •  I hear ya (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bill W, Amber6541
        I've never really understood how the "vote present" strategy was supposed to work.
        Presumably if there is a large block voting "present", it means that even people in that block who might have come close to voting for a bill find a critical objection to some element of it.  And I think that if the block is larger, the positions of those "present" legislators might be perceived as carrying more legitimacy.

        Safety in numbers.  That's the way I read it.

        And sometimes legislators have to deal with some nice sounding piece of legislation with 3-4 nasty provisions on the table.  If the vote is close (such as some of the attempts with GOP partial birth abortion legislation in Illinois) and if having a handful of progressive legislators voting present can persuade those on the fence to vote present instead of yes, it can tip the balance against the bill.  ("Present" becomes "no" in Illinois.)

        I don't know if we can determine if this particular type of usage of the present vote actually succeeds in inoculating the legislator voting "present".  But it seems clear that most legislators and poly sci types in Illinois think it works enough to be useful.

        It has broader usage than we realize too.  Here is a bit of background.

        I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

        by Satya1 on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:43:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The NH story (0+ / 0-)

      isn't about settling scores. It's about political backscratching. Lie for me in 2007, and I'll endorse you in 2012. As simple as that.

      "Never kick a fresh turd on a hot day." ~ Harry Truman

      by susanthe on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:53:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Cilley (0+ / 0-)

      I think Ms. Cilley is finding out what a lot of us Wisconsin Democrats have learned over the last four years: when you support Barack Obama it's a one-way street. Don't expect him to do anything for you, even if you're being attacked for supporting him.

    •  Your analysis is pretty filmsy (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rja, askew, NMLib, pademocrat

      There's really no evidence that Obama was pandering to black evangelicals. Planned Parenthood Illinois have him a 100% rating, and noted this was part of their strategy. That Obama came up with doesnt really mean much, ince PP agreed with it.

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

      Dude, your "sources" are either from 2004 (regarding the Bush campaign's outreach to black voters, which wasn't even particularly successful), opinions about McClurkin (which really aren't relevant to the abortion question), and then a charge against his character, with zero evidence showing that Obama's intention in the present vote was anything other than what he discussed with Planned Parenthood.

      I don't want to rehash this, but you have zero evidence of Obama's supposed pandering to black evangelicals on abortion, and David has absolutely nothing to apologize for in this digest.

      Politics and more Formerly DGM on SSP. NM-01, 26 (chairman of the Atheist Caucus)

      by NMLib on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:37:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  So? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ron Thompson

    Clinton rewards Dems who were loyal to him and his wife. It's not like he's going out endorsing GOP candidates to spite people who didn't endorse HRC. I find loyalty an admirable trait and he shows more of it than Obama from my observations.

    Language professors HATE me!

    by Zornorph on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:05:37 AM PDT

    •  Obama is the President (10+ / 0-)

      aside from incumbents who request his endorsement, he doesn't get involved in primaries as a rule. Did Clinton pick sides when he was in office? My guess is no. And loyalty is all well and good, but it's annoying when he goes to bat for backstabbers like John Delaney and conservadems like Marty Chavez.

      Voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

      by sapelcovits on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:12:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Also (6+ / 0-)

        Clinton will back someone who supported his wife, even though the other candidate was leagues better both electorally and ideologically. (See Andrew Romanoff and Kathleen Kane.)

        Republicans and the Tea Party: Wrong for America.

        by ehstronghold on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:14:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes. It's about personal loyalty (5+ / 0-)

          to the Clintons, not loyalty to the Dem party nor loyalty to what is best for the specific district, state or whatever.

          I had more or less forgotten about the whole fiasco over the Clintons' attacks on Obama for being "weak on choice" and misleading people about the "present" votes -- which were in fact an example of Barack Obama putting loyalty to the party, to the cause, to the outcome over his own personal gain... it was explained at the time that the pro-choice groups involved had specifically lobbied him to vote "present" as it was a needed part of their strategy to get other Dems on board, and so he agreed to do it to ensure the right outcome. He put loyalty to the cause and outcome over his personal standing. This was a great thing he did, and the fact that the Clintons used it against him and blatantly lied about it to the voters made me sooooooooooo angry at them both. I still think it was an extremely low tactic. And I do not consider Bill Clinton's loyalty to one of the participants in that to be a positive sign regarding his character.

        •  Kane is the better candidate (0+ / 0-)

          since she beat Murphy in the primary handily. Her electoral profile is much better IMO. Clinton can endorse whoever he wants. A lot of people including Obama want him to fundraise and campaign for them.

          •  oh boy (5+ / 0-)

            back to the "winning the primary makes you more electable in the general" argument. I guess by that logic we should just run Alvin Greene everywhere.

            Voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

            by sapelcovits on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:18:21 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I agree (3+ / 0-)

              In fact, from what I can tell, there is not much of a correlation between primary electability and GE electability. And if there is a correlation, it is a negative one. The primary system in the united states leads to the most extreme candidates on the left and right to win primaries, but they are conversely much less effective at winning general elections when the voters aren't diehard partisan activists.

            •  Kane didn't beat a nobody in the primary. (0+ / 0-)

              She beat an Obama preferred  (through
              Axelrod's endorsment) former Congressman who also had the Philadelphia/Rendell endorsements and union machine.  This wasn't a hopeless race against a sitting Senator. Kane has money and can raise money. She won in  areas that Democrats need to win in November. Murphy took the race for granted and Kane simply beat him. Clinton's late endorsement certainly helped.

              •  Money (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                definitely moves way more votes in a primary (especially for a downballot race) than it does in a general. Remember, for the general election, most people will vote their partisan inclinations and the battle is over a mushy middle. In a primary, almost everyone is the mushy middle. I've never seen any evidence that Murphy took the race for granted, only that Kane blasted him out of the water with her self-funding.

                Voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

                by sapelcovits on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:49:11 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  Yout forgot the number 1 rule: (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          OGGoldy, Zornorph, pademocrat

          The Clintons always pay their debts.

          NC-06/NC-04; -9.00, -8.41; progress through pragmatism

          by sawolf on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:28:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Very well said, sapelcovits. (0+ / 0-)

        There is a reason things are done a certain way. The results aren't always ideal, as your Marty Chavez example indicates, but it shouldn't be a big mystery.

        "The election of Mitt Romney and a supporting congress this November would be a...disaster for America. Think of the trainwreck that has been the Conservative government in Britain since 2010. And square it."--Brad DeLong

        by bjssp on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 05:04:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Must be why Obama pushed hard for Corzine (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Big Clinton '08 supporter.

      "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 Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:04:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Erik Paulsen vs. Michele Obama (0+ / 0-)

    Paulsen is the Republican bench in Minnesota.

  •  National polls today...... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Daily Kos/SEIU weekly poll is Obama's worst since post-debt ceiling, with a very poor 42-53 job approval and a 46-46 ballot test tie with Romney.

    Still, it's an outlier, even the right-loaded Rasmussen is better than that today and all recent days.

    NBC/WSJ comes out tonight.  I've grown in recent years to trust that poll more than most, so I'm anxious to see what they find.  I actually won't be surprised if there's some slippage for Obama, as I expect over time the weak monthly economic numbers take a toll.  But neither will I be surprised if they hold steady from the previous month.  I fear at some point we'll reach a tipping point where the stagnant economy finally starts moving numbers against us, but a "fear" is all it is for now.

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

    by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:29:56 AM PDT

    •  Huh? Why have PPP polls... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jj32, askew, Amber6541

      Been so bad for Obama lately? Have they tightened their voter screen? Are they oversampling Republicans?

      I just don't get it. I'd be more worried if we had a ton of polls confirming them. But with the rest of the pollsters recently showing either a stable race or slight improvement for Obama, it's weird seeing PPP suggest Obama is somehow falling to "Mitt-mentum".

      •  Yeah, they have a tweet about PA poll (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        atdnext, Amber6541

        saying Condi Rice adds 6% to Romney if she is VP.

        Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems like for the longest they had polling that showed even popular VP candidates wouldnt add much to the ticket(which seems right to me), and now suddenly they add a lot.

      •  The polls d o show change (0+ / 0-)

        Every poll is showing a shift on the Presidents handling of top issues. The new polls coming out now may show some slippage. The GDP number comes out this week and the jobs report in about three weeks. I don't see a way to change his Job Approval. He has to make Romney unacceptable choice.

      •  I think they are trying to lower the house effect (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        With so many complaints that PPP is too Democratic leaning with polls, it seems to be that they are trying to change up their numbers to keep from being labeled with too much of a House effect.

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

        by DrPhillips on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:16:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  No such issues in today's weekly release (0+ / 0-)

        The sample is a tiny bit whiter than the election will be, but the partisan composition is like 2008, and other things are the same as past weekly DK/SEIU polls.

        Just worse job approval and favorables for Obama this week, that's all.

        I don't have an explanation, and one thing I've learned is not to obsess over looking for explanations to every odd poll.  Just let some be odd and continue to look at the totality of polling.

        The totality of polling continues to be that Obama's job approval is roughly break-even, as it's been really all year.  Yes that can change, but the data doesn't currently say it has.

        But like I said, I've grown to trust NBC/WSJ more than others, so I'm anxious to see what it says later today.

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

        by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:38:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Maybe because Pres Obama "went negative" (0+ / 0-)

          with the Bain ads.  What was keeping him up in polling was personal likability.  

          •  No. Most voters are not really... (4+ / 0-)

            That esoteric or idealistic. And if that were the case, why didn't it show a similar drop in Romney's numbers?

            Typically, candidates only get "punished for going negative" when the allegations are so blatantly false and/or ridiculous that they backfire (a la Pete Hoekstra). Even though voters always complain about "negative ads", there's a reason why campaigns still use them.

          •  Give it a rest. Honestly. (7+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            EcosseNJ, LordMike, dc1000, askew, abgin, MBishop1, NMLib

            He's been "going negative" with the Bain ads for three months.  Why would it suddenly cause a dip in his approvals this week?

            If you want something more meaty to concern troll about, worry about the fact that this was the first week recently that Team Romney has outspent Team Obama on TV ads, and significantly so.  This includes the soft sell "It's OK to make a change" RNC ad, which I think is a great ad and has a lot of money behind it.

            If there is a shift in polling beyond this one, which I am not going to grant until it happens, I would be 1000 times more quick to attribute it to that than to the "Bain attacks aren't working" meme that you've been shoving down our throats daily for as long as the Bain attacks have been around.

            White Male, 36, New FL-14 (Castor), proud father of a 4-year-old daughter. "Who let the dogs out? Who? Who?" - Mitt Romney, MLK Day 2008.

            by spiderdem on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:06:35 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  As long as the economy doesn't get worse, I (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, The Caped Composer

      think the stagnant economy is already baked into the #s.

      As for national polls, the only one I trust is Pew. PPP seems to do better on state polls and the NBC/WJ, ABC, and CBS keep monkeying around with their D/R/I and AA/Hispanic%s too much for me to trust them.  

      President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

      by askew on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:58:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They don't "monkey around" with those figures (0+ / 0-)

        They simply avoid weighting for them, since weighting is frought with problems.

        I don't know for sure what Pew does, but when a few weeks ago I looked back over the past record, I didn't find them as compellingly accurate as a lot of people here seem to think.  They were fine, but not a standout from what I could see.

        I know that the reality of this race is that there's been a lot of stability, and NBC/WSJ has reflected that over time, with very little change.  Pew actually has been slightly less stable in its numbers over time than NBC/WSJ.

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

        by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:00:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think it is naive to think that the media (0+ / 0-)

          isn't going to mess with polling to get the #s they want to create a narrative. There is a ton of money that will be lost if this presidential race doesn't stay close. Pew doesn't have that motivation.

          President Obama at Madison Rally 9/28/2010 - "Change is not a spectator sport."

          by askew on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:41:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Pew (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LordMike, askew, MBishop1

          51-48 in 2004 and 52-46 in 2008. Hard to do better 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 Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 09:46:25 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Chicago knows Bain works (link)...... (5+ / 0-)

    Good piece by Buzz Feed with some apparently real reporting from OFA:

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

    by DCCyclone on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 07:57:43 AM PDT

    •  Yep. No matter how much... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, DCCyclone

      The Beltway pundits catch "the vapors" whenever they have to address Bain again, OFA knows it has a winning issue here. It turns the "Romney's better for the economy" argument on its head by highlighting what Romney actually did at Bain. Even if the Beltway pundits keep trying to dismiss the Bain attacks as "desperate ploys from Chicago", what matters is that the argument is simple enough for most voters to easily understand. Romney's weird excuses, on the other hand, are not.

  •  enjoyed the NH news (0+ / 0-)

    It's always interesting to me how much mutual back scratching goes on.  Support of principles is perhaps a far quainter notion than most of us would like to know.  (I'm not assuming they are mutually exclusive however.)

    I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

    by Satya1 on Tue Jul 24, 2012 at 08:04:46 AM PDT

  •  WA-Gov (0+ / 0-)

    Inslee's "laid back" ad seems downright corny to me. It seems targeted at older, in-state-native voters with its emphasis on his family, and local roots. I'm sure he's a very nice guy an all, but honestly I think he's a rather weak candidate.
    I think he'll win because it's a presidential year, and the R's have no real "turnout advantage" in an all-mail blue state.

  •  Time to fire PPP on nat. polls- consistent outlier (0+ / 0-)

    Internal numbers have AA for Obama at 78% .... Seriously??
    Women for Obama +2 Seriously......?  PPP has been fairly true on state polls but totally shitty on their nat. polling. I'm betting that NBC poll this afternoon shows strong + POTUS.

  •  PPP excludes cell only voters- 34% of electorate (0+ / 0-)

    I don't see how you can compensate for that at all and have any accuracy.

  •  Not that bold of a progressive, huh? (0+ / 0-)

    Looks like that Donovan commercial didn't make the full cut for CT-5.

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