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Leading Off:

FL-26: This is a hell of a crazy story. Those of you following the FL-26 Democratic primary know that it features a showdown between businesswoman Gloria Romero Roses and 2010 nominee Joe Garcia. But there's a little-known third candidate in the race, hotel administrator Justin Lamar Sternad, and his presence is deeply questionable. Despite raising almost no money and being invisible on the campaign trail, Sternad has managed to flood the district with a ton of mailers (referring to himself as "Lamar!", like Tennessee's Alexander), one of which reads in part:

"Lamar is as American as Apple Pie. Lamar Sternad is the only Democratic candidate that was born and raised in the United states. He will advocate for English as our official language. Americans in Florida are being discriminated against by employers who hire illegal immigrants and take jobs away from our law-abiding citizens."
That's not exactly a message you'd expect to hear in a Democratic contest where a lot of Hispanic voters will cast ballots, but it may be that Lamar is letting his sheep's clothing slip a bit. As the Miami Herald points out, the same shop that produced Lamar's flyers also did nearly six figures worth of work for GOP Rep. David Rivera last cycle. Lamar's also aimed almost all of his fire in public remarks at Garcia, even going so far as to insist he would not attack Rivera until after the primary... but in the same breath castigating Garcia as a "three-time loser" while at the very same time trying to tar Garcia as the one who's "mudslinging." That's some chutzpah. And the Herald adds:
In addition to repeating Rivera's criticisms of Garcia's divorce, Sternad also appears to be misappropriating President Obama's campaign trademark "O" for his campaign. He might also be trying to persuade unaware voters that he's black, sending out two civil rights-themed mailers that depict Obama and  Martin Luther King. One mailer also features Rep. Dwight Bullard and his mother, whom he hopes to succeed, state Sen. Larcenia Bullard. They have no photos of the lilly-white Sternad, who is listing his campaign name as "Lamar Sternad" even though he goes by Justin Sternad in his business life.
All of this circumstantial evidence has led Garcia's campaign to conclude that Lamar's candidacy is "little more than another dirty trick by David Rivera," aimed at sabotaging Garcia's own bid. Given what we know of Rivera, who is as shady as they come, I'd believe it. And if true, it means that Rivera fears Garcia more than he does Roses, which I'd also believe.

Meanwhile, SEIU COPE is getting behind Garcia with a week to go before the primary, airing this new ad, backed by a $72K buy (including production costs). The spot attacks Rivera for voting for the Ryan budget to end Medicare and tries to link Garcia to President Obama, who appointed Garcia to serve in the Department of Energy in 2009.


AZ-Sen: Looks like GOP Rep. Jeff Flake has some more awkward questions to answer about his past as a lobbyist. Among the many sordid entities he supported was a uranium mine in Namibia which was part-owned by none other than the government of Iran. Flake's long claimed that he didn't know about Iran's stake in the mine until 2011, and has also said that U.S. officials weren't even aware of the situation until a 2005 Reuters report, but it seems that Democrats have him busted. It turns out that the Interior Department's U.S. Geological Survey published an entry in their "Mineral Yearbook" that described Iran as a 10% owner of the venture as far back as 1994. Try again.

CT-Sen: Dem Sen. Richard Blumenthal sings Rep. Chris Murphy's praises in this new ad, as "the candidate who can help me break the gridlock and get results." (PPP recently found Blumenthal to be Connecticut's most popular statewide elected official.)

MO-Sen: PPP continues its series of final-weekend GOP Senate primary polls with a survey of Missouri. They find businessman John Brunner at 35, Rep. Todd Akin at 30, and ex-state Treasurer Sarah Steelman at 25. Brunner's strength actually lies in winning over moderate and "somewhat conservative" voters—not a common recipe for winning a Republican nomination—while Akin leads with "very conservative" respondents. Tom Jensen offers a couple of interesting thoughts, both of which have some echoes with the recently TX-Sen runoff:

Despite Brunner's modest lead there are a couple of reasons to think an upset is possible on Tuesday night. One is that Akin leads Brunner 35-33 among voters who say they're "very excited" about casting their ballots on Tuesday. Brunner's overall advantage is based on a 37-31 advantage over Akin with "somewhat excited" voters and a 36-21 lead with those who say they're "not that excited." If we count only the "very" and "somewhat" excited voters Brunner's lead over Akin shrinks to only two points.

The other reason an upset seems possible is that Akin appears to have the momentum in the closing stretch. It's been more than two months since PPP last polled this race but compared to a Mason Dixon poll a week ago Akin's up 13 points while Brunner's gained only two points and Steelman's actually dropped by a couple. If that trend continues right on through election day Akin might be able to pull out a narrow victory.

PPP also has numbers for the MO-Gov, MO-LG, and MO-AG Republican contests at the link. Dave Spence looks like a lock for the gubernatorial nod, while the embarrassing Peter Kinder seems as though he'll win renomination with a plurality. And Ed Martin (whom you'll remember from various other races this cycle and last) is cruising in the AG race.

ND-Sen: I found this new ad from Dem Heidi Heitkamp pretty touching, I've gotta say. She tells us about a veteran named Charlie Weichel, who volunteers to drive other veterans to distant medical appointments, putting in 14-hour days three times a week. Heitkamp promises to "fight for a Heroes Health card" so that veterans "can see a doctor closer to home." She closes by dedicating the ad to "heroes like Charlie." Seriously, I must have some dust in the corner of my eye that's causing me to tear up.

VA-, ND-, WI-Sen: The pro-Dem Majority PAC has re-upped their ad buys against George Allen in Virginia to the tune of $85K. There's also a strangely tiny re-up (less than $10K) against Eric Hovde & Tommy Thompson in Wisconsin. More intriguing are some production costs for a new spot hitting Rick Berg in North Dakota, so be on the lookout for that ad soon.

WI-Sen: There's nothing like seeing an entitled ultra-1%er flail at the injustice (oh, the injustice!) being done to him. Uber-wealthy businessman Eric Hovde is now threatening legal action over new ads being run by third-party group Americans for Job Security, which say that a company tied to Hovde accepted federal stimulus money, something that makes Hovde hopping mad. Interestingly, Hovde has accused AJS of shilling for ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson, though the framing of one of the spots (since removed from YouTube) questioned Hovde's conservative credentials, which seemed like more of an appeal to potential voters for ex-Rep. Mark Neumann.

Meanwhile, the Club for Growth's expected IE report is also now available; they're spending $441K to sandblast Hovde in the final week before primary day. Combined with AJS's $650K, that's nearly $1.1 million in last-minute attack ads being dumped on the rich guy—a taste of his own free-spending medicine.


NH-Gov: Maggie Hassan just became the first Democratic gubernatorial candidate in New Hampshire to go up on TV. One spot is mostly introductory in nature and focuses on Hassan's support for education. The other is a bit more partisan: Hassan discusses her efforts to prevent insurers from dropping coverage for birth control.

PA-Gov: Wealthy Democrat Tom Knox, who ran for governor in 2010 before dropping out and endorsing Dan Onorato, says he plans to make a statehouse bid once again in 2014. Knox would have the ability to self-fund, but his ability to appeal to voters (he's also unsuccessfully run for mayor of Philadelphia) seems like less of a sure thing.

WA-Gov: If you were concerned that the Elway Poll from the other week—the first of the race to give a substantial (43-36) lead to Jay Inslee—was some sort of fluke, you can rest a little easier. SurveyUSA, the most frequent pollster of the race, finds a similar pro-Inslee trend in their newest poll (on behalf of KING-TV). The lead isn't as big (48-45, in Inslee's favor) as with Elway, but it puts Inslee closer to the 50% mark. The big problem for Republican Rob McKenna: He's below 40% in the entire "Puget Sound area,"  a position from which a Republican simply can't win statewide; he'd need to hit 40% in King County alone, plus draw even in Pierce and Snohomish Counties.

If you're wondering what's behind this reversal of fortune, one factor seems to be that the candidates finally started TV advertising, which served to remind a lot of casual but reliable Dems that there's a gubernatorial election and who their candidate is. With their intro spots behind them, they're both moving on to the inevitable jobs-themed ads now, and McKenna just rolled his second ad out late last week. (David Jarman)


AZ-09: $14K more in mailers from EMILY for Kyrsten Sinema. Arizona's primary is still a few weeks off, Aug. 28.

CT-05: I'd have to call this unexpected: Elizabeth Esty is out with a new negative ad in the Democratic primary... but she's attacking Dan Roberti, not Chris Donovan, as you might have anticipated. The spot is quite harsh, going after Roberti for his work as a lobbyist and the fact that a super PAC with ties to his also-a-lobbyist dad has been spending heavily on his behalf. Meanwhile, Roberti just contributed another $200K to his own effort, bringing him to some $830K in self-funding total. Does this mean he has a chance to win?

Meanwhile, Donovan has a new spot out in which he directly takes on Esty himself, an interesting and unusual choice. Donovan notes that he served in the legislature with Esty (and "respect[s] her greatly"), but says "there are real differences between us." Donovan goes directly at Esty's now-infamous 2009 alternate budget, saying that when the state faced tough times, she "refused to ask the wealthy to pay their fair share, and instead supported a Republican-like budget that cut education and cut services for seniors." Donovan of course contrasts that with his own budget, which did carry the day and avoided big cuts.

FL-07: Rep. Sandy Adams has a new ad out attacking her GOP primary rival, fellow Rep. John Mica, which repeatedly features a clip of President Obama saying in reference a new transportation bill: "Congressman Mica, whose leadership made this bill a reality." Mica is steamed because at the end of the spot, Adams uses a (basically inaudible) clip of Mica telling Obama "I'm your best cheerleader" after the president's 2011 State of the Union address. The problem, says Mica's campaign, is that members are prohibited from using footage of House proceedings "for any political purpose," and they want the spot removed. That's not going to happen, though (TV stations are required to air candidates' ads regardless of content), and with the House out of session, the Ethics Committee can't even offer a reprimand.

FL-18: Pro-Dem super PAC American Sunrise is spending $38K to air a new TV ad on behalf of Patrick Murphy. It's a very generic positive spot, but it may help to increase Murphy's name rec. It would help if the buy were (considerably) bigger, though.

FL-22: It's rare to see national Democrats rally around a candidate in a contested primary so openly, but rally they have. Nancy Pelosi is the latest to make a point of backing Lois Frankel over Kristin Jacobs, stumping and raising money for her in South Florida. Pelosi also held one of those "I swear it's not political" Medicare forums with Frankel as well. Meanwhile, some random new super PAC called "South Floridians for Effective Leadership" is trying to swoop in to help Jacobs at the last moment, but seeing as their first spending report details just $13K for mailers, I doubt that's going to make much of a difference.

HI-02: This is pretty wild: With Hawaii's primaries coming up on Saturday (yep, Saturday—mark your calendars), Civil Beat hired Merriman River to conduct one final poll of the Democratic contest in HI-02. The numbers, if they can be believed, are pretty amazing: Honolulu city councilor Tulsi Gabbard is now beating former Honolulu mayor Mufi Hannemann 49-29; a couple of months ago, the same outfit found pretty much a dead heat. And prior to that, Hannemann held enormous leads of his own.

But there are reasons to remain skeptical, not least among them Merriman's shoddy track record last cycle. A week ago, a Ward Research poll put Hannemann up 43-33. And even Gabbard's own recent internal polling was nowhere near this gaudy, giving her a five-point edge. Still, I think the momentum and advantage is now with Gabbard, and as I've said before, if she pulls this off, it would be one of the biggest upsets of the cycle.

Meanwhile, the Sierra Club is leaving nothing to chance and is airing $51K worth of radio ads for Tulsi. You can listen here; the spot both attacks Hannemann on environmental grounds and praises Gabbard on the same front.

IL-02: I don't know that this makes Dem Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr.'s situation any less opaque, but his wife just conducted an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times and says he's being treated for depression , not substance abuse, and repeats that he did not attempt suicide. She also describes a very unclear "collapse" on Jackson's part and says that Jackson's family has been imposing a "news blackout" on him since June 10.

IL-08: The New Prosperity Foundation, a right-wing super PAC whose name reminds me of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere, launched a round of attack ads at Illinois Democrats a little while ago—a series of TV ads which were actually backed by very little money. Their new move doesn't pack a whole lot more oomph: They're spending $29K on mailers going after Tammy Duckworth.

MO-01: In the first and undoubtedly last public poll of the MO-01 Democratic primary, SurveyUSA (on behalf of KSDK-TV) finds Rep. Lacy Clay handily beating fellow Rep. Russ Carnahan, 56-35. Many figured this contest would come down to a question of race, and indeed that seems to be the case/ Looking at the crosstabs, Clay is doing far better among blacks, winning them 81-12, than Carnahan is with whites (he's up just 65-23 with that group). And given that, in SUSA's view, blacks will make up 53% of the electorate vs. just 42% for whites, that's curtains for Carnahan.

MI-13, MI-14: EPIC-MRA has a couple of last-second polls for two of Tuesday's Democratic primaries in Michigan. In MI-13, they find Rep. John Conyers crushing his nearest opponent, state Sen. Glenn Anderson, by a 57-17 margin. (It may be best to view this race as an opportunity for Conyers' challengers to position themselves for his retirement.) Meanwhile, in MI-14, they show what you'd expect: Rep. Gary Peters is beating Rep. Hansen Clarke, though his 52-33 edge is even more dominant than what I'd have anticipated.

MN-08: Another $16K on mailers from EMILY to help Dem Tarryl Clark.

VA-02: Democrat Paul Hirschbiel is out with his first ad, a positive spot in which a teacher praises him for being "instrumental in setting up early childhood education programs like this one" and says that he "gave up a career in business to help kids instead." Hirschbiel, the founder of a private equity firm, is nevertheless reportedly quite wealthy—as is the man he's trying to unseat, GOP freshman Scott Rigell, who spent a monster $2.5 million on his own race last cycle. Hirschbiel hasn't done any notable self-funding yet, though, and his fundraising has been pretty decent. And speaking of money, the Washington Post actually has the size of the buy: $70K for a week on broadcast TV.

Grab Bag:

Ads: AFSCME and Americans United for Change are teaming up on a new $280K ad campaign targeting five Republicans on taxes: Sen. Dean Heller (NV-Sen), Rep. Denny Rehberg (MT-Sen), Rep. Jim Renacci (OH-16), Rep. Steve King (IA-04), and Rep. Dan Lungren (CA-03). The ads are all identical (just swapping in the right name), with an announcer attacking Republicans for "trying to tip the scales even more for big corporations and the richest 2 percent." There's a national spot airing on cable news channels as well; you can find all of them at the link.

Cities: If you pay attention to the Census Bureau's lists of the nation's most populous cities, you've probably noticed that Sun Belt cities like Phoenix, Austin, San Antonio, Jacksonville, Nashville, and Oklahoma City are some of the fastest growing. That's only part of the context, though: The Census is out with an interesting new graphic that shows that these cities aren't really becoming any more distinctly "urban" (they aren't getting any denser), because the population growth is coming through constant annexation outwards, not building up, and their density has stayed flat over the decades. There's only a handful of cities that are boxed in by suburbs and can't annex anything more, but are still growing anyway, thanks to growing upward instead of out, and those tend to be the increasingly blue strongholds in the west (Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, Denver, and, despite the fact that it's not boxed in, Las Vegas). (David Jarman)

Polltopia: This New York Times article summarizing the debate over how to (and even whether to) poll cellphone-only users may not hold too many surprises for dedicated pollwatchers, but it does contain some interesting anecdotes about which pollsters use which approaches. For instance, ABC/WaPo and NBC/WSJ will terminate a call with a cellphone user if he also has a landline, while Pew, CBS/NYT, and Gallup will still continue the call and then use weighting to achieve the right cellphone/landline balance. Meanwhile, Rasmussen is starting to experiment with internet-based surveys as a means of reaching younger voters to supplement their all-landline autodialing. (David Jarman)

Radio: In case you missed it, I was on Daily Kos Radio with David Waldman on Friday morning, talking about a bunch of different recent and upcoming races, including TX-Sen and MI-11. If you'd like to listen to my segment, you can do so here:

I was also on Kudzu Vine on Sunday night, discussing a variety of Southern races. For that, you can listen here:
WATN?: Uh, say what now? NRSC chair Pete Sessions just married crazy snake lady Karen Diebel? Apparently so!

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  i wish it were next tuesday already (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    i'm in ct-05. this is too much stress. i can't take it anymore.

  •  Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tietack, Woody, bumiputera

    I'm somewhat surprised to see it mentioned here.

  •  Reuters-Ipsos should have a poll today (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    they were due for one last week I thought, and they release pretty uniformly on Tuesday.

  •  So I was talking last night... (4+ / 0-)

    to someone who's worked on several Democratic campaigns here in California, and was one of Obama's vaunted field organizers in 2008, helping turn Indiana blue, about the state of the House races here in California in 2012.  He shared quite a few insights, as well as quite a bit of frustration with how the DCCC is managing things, like ignoring some races they shouldn't, while throwing money away in others.

    This may not be a popular viewpoint here, as DailyKos has endorsed him, but he thinks we're wasting our time with Ami Bera in CA-07.  With almost no funding, Bill Durston (D) got 44.0% of the vote against Dan Lungren (R) in 2008 in the old CA-03.  While 2010 was a worse year for Democrats nationally, California was one of the few places that bucked that trend, and we actually gained a seat in the Assembly (Dr. Richard Pan's win over Prop. 8's lawyer Andy Pugno).  But despite national help and good fundraising, Bera only got 43.2% against Lungren in 2010.

    Now for the new CA-07, the guy I was talking to said it's foolish to focus on how Obama did here in 2008, because that's going to be the high water mark.  2012 California Race Tracker has good information on this district (as well as every other one).  He said to look at the Attorney General race from 2010 as the high water mark for the GOP, 2008 as the high water mark for us, and that the vote should fall somewhere in the middle this time around for downballot races as well.  And Steve Cooley (R) crushed Kamala Harris (D) here 50.1%-36.3%.

    He thinks we're just throwing money away on Bera when it could be used in places like CA-41 and CA-47, which are supposed to be Democratic pick-ups, but where potential issues could cost us.

    In CA-41, Mark Takano's (D) fundraising hasn't been as strong as we thought it would.  While he's almost even for the entire cycle with John Tavaglione (R), who's already well known there because he's a Riverside County Supervisor, the cash-on-hand numbers are worrisome, as Tavaglione's now got almost a 2:1 advantage over Takano.  Combine that with a weaker-than-expected showing in the June primary, and people need to start looking at this race.

    Also, my friend is worried that Tavaglione (or rather, outside super PACs with untraceable money) may attack Takano for being openly gay, and that in a still rather conservative area like Riverside, that may unfortunately work.  Does anyone have the breakdown on how this new district voted on Prop. 8?  If it passed here with 55% or more, that means there are enough Chick-Fil-A bigots living here that an anti-gay attack could destroy Takano's campaign.  Cooley also edged out Harris in this district by 1 percentage point.

    In CA-47, Alan Lowenthal (D) is supposed to lock things up for us, but his fundraising has basically been piss poor.  Gary Delong's (R) raised over $300,000 more than Lowenthal, and has a $100,000 cash-on-hand advantage now.  And his comments against high speed rail only served to de-motivate liberals.  And again, Cooley beat Harris here 45.2%-39.6%.

    These are places where we need to have a strong GOTV effort, but my friend isn't seeing that happening as of yet.

    •  Wow! (0+ / 0-)

      I don't know who this guy is that you were talking to, but he's dead on with most of what he's saying.  

      California will most certainly remain crazy blue in most regions, but it's a "watch out" election in others, methinks.

      Great post.  Thanks.

      The truth is sometimes very inconvenient.

      by commonsensically on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:44:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  All that sounds plenty reasonable, but... (7+ / 0-)

      ...I can easily challenge some of that.

      Specifically on the Takano race, if Takano's district went for Cooley by only a point, that's awfully tough for the GOP as I agree the 2010 A.G. race represents the best-case scenario for the GOP, and this is a worse environment for the GOP than 2010.

      More broadly, I agree totally that Obama '08 numbers should be thrown away in many states as the best-case Democratic scenario that won't happen this year......but that's not true in California and some other blue states.  Obama actually is on track in California to duplicate his 2008 performance, and actually is polling much better in California now than in summer 2008.  He won 61-37 4 years ago, but hardly any polling picked up that big a margin; even the vaunted Field poll had him up 55-33 in mid-October.  Field now says 55-37 over Mitt, same ballpark.

      I think your friend needs to revisit his analysis and consider that California might be a more stubborn blue than he realizes.  And that will matter downballot, and matter for Bera who is now in a more favorable district than last time.

      And it's not true that 2010 wave didn't affect California at all, we had a couple incumbent Dem Congressmen barely survive because of it.  State Dems were sweating more than normal, even if they didn't suffer much in the end.  I wouldn't assume Bera didn't lose some votes because of generic dislike of his party.

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

      by DCCyclone on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:11:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yep (0+ / 0-)

        "And it's not true that 2010 wave didn't affect California at all, we had a couple incumbent Dem Congressmen barely survive because of it."

        The sort of point that gets lost all too often. Looking purely at W-L records is as foolish in politics as it is with pitchers. A close win is as much (if not more) luck than skill.

        Political Director, Daily Kos

        by David Nir on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 11:15:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  CA-07: Sounds like your friend thinks of Bera (0+ / 0-)

      like many of us think of (in an electoral sense) Darcy Burner. (no insult or insinuation intended on Bera's political sense.

      Was '10 better for Ds than '08 in terms of overall House vote? The numbers I've ran for WA show that the House vote in that west coast state moved with the nation, aka it was fortunate that most WA D House members had a sufficient cushion to survive '10.

      "I hope; therefore, I can live."
      For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

      by tietack on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:14:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I disagree that Obama 2008 is a high water mark (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      askew, sawolf, bythesea, itskevin

      The Hispanic population in California is still growing faster than the white population.  Most people moving into California these days are demographics likely to vote Demoratic (young professionals, etc). Democratic voting strength in the Bay Area is still spreading outwards into places like the Sacramento suburbs.  The 2010 AG race shouldn't be considered because the Republican was locally popular and not running for national office.  Voters know electing a Republican AG has different implications than sending a Republican to Congress.

      •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

        California has continued to trend toward the dems for the last several elections, and there's every reason to expect that trend to continue.

      •  It's growing, but... (0+ / 0-)

        it doesn't necessarily translate to them registering to vote, and then also showing up to vote.  A lot of Latinos in California who showed up to vote for the first time in 2008 did so in part because of what Obama said about comprehensive immigration reform, and they've been sorely disappointed in him because of that.  The reprieve for DREAM Act students wasn't enough to assuage all their frustration, and running on fearing Romney can only go so far in turning out non-likely voters.  My friend cautioned me that there may be a dropoff among first-time 2008 voters who didn't get their ponies fast enough, and are going to sit this one out.  We'll see what happens soon enough.

      •  Funny you say that (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        because a liberal friend of mine just moved from SF to the Sacramento suburbs.

    •  A couple of points (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tietack, DCCyclone, bythesea, redrelic17

      1. I doubt it's the case that any Republican incumbent "should" have done better in 2008 than in 2010, even a Republican incumbent in California.

      Someone showed something similar for Washington, but (looking only at Republicans who were contested incumbents in both cycles) Elton Gallegly, Howard McKeon, David Dreier, Ed Royce, Jerry Lewis, Gary Miller, Ken Calvert, Dana Rohrabacher, John Campbell, Darrell Issa, and Brian Bilbray all did worse in 2008 than in 2010 (as did Dan Lungren) while only Wally Herger and Mary Bono Mack did better in 2008 than in 2010.  That's looking at vote share, by the way.

      Nearly every incumbent Democrat in the country did better in 2008 than in 2010, although two of the exceptions, Nancy Pelosi and Lucille Roybal-Allard, were Californian.

      That's not to evaluate Bera's chances of winning--but it really was a national wave, even if Democrats didn't lose any seats in CA.

      2. As for CA-47, Obama got something like 58% or 59% of the vote there.  Even if that's a "high-water mark" that still indicates a fairly Democratic district.

      And so what if Cooley beat Harris?  Harris barely won California, a D+7 state.  A district can easily be to the right of California--or be narrowly won or lost by Harris--and still be Democratically-leaning.  Also, remember that Cooley was the Los Angeles County D.A., and might have had a relative advantage in the area.

      3. I rather doubt it'll matter, but for what it's worth, Prop 8 apparently passed in CA-41 with 63.6% of the vote.  But this is still a fairly Democratic district.

      27, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-14 (formerly PA-02/NY-12).

      by Xenocrypt on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:26:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Lowenthal's stabs in the back (0+ / 0-)

      On High Speed Rail, a signature issue for the Obama-Biden Administration, Alan Lowenthal led the opposition in the legislature. As one of a very few Democrats joining with the Repubs, of course, he also undercut Governor Pat Brown, who was really putting himself on the line for High Speed Rail.

      So you don't have to be a liberal to be demotivated by Lowenthal's shenanigans on this important issue. After all, if he's this kind of Obama non-supporter in the California State Senate, how badly do we need 'friends like him' in the US House?

    •  CA7 (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Chachy, KingofSpades, dufffbeer

      Unless Lungren has gotten a lot stronger or Bera a lot weaker since 2010, your friend is full of it:

      1. Lungren beat Bera by 7 in the old (49-49 Obama) district in 2010. "Bera only got 43%" is spin, because 7% of the vote went to protest candidates.

      2. The new district is 51-46 Obama so all else equal Lungren's edge should be down to 2.

      3. 2012 should be a far better environment for Dems than 2010, so Bera should have an edge.

      Bera probably won't have the same edge in advertising he had in 2010, but I think the difference between 2012 (marginally blue) and 2010 (all-time red wave) outweighs that. This race is a tossup at worst for Dems.

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

      by sacman701 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 09:10:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  As far as Ami Bera is concerned, (0+ / 0-)

      I would take the opposite and possibly too optimistic view, which is that the Democratic base in the area* is pretty damn strong, given its Republican past. This doesn't mean it'll be all that easy to unseat him, but a lot of Democrats looking to take down a Republican would love love love to have 44 percent or so as a base.

      *I'm not sure how much the area has changed, so perhaps a shift in the territory makes comparisons, in both sense, somewhat pointless.

      I also wonder what a seeming dearth of a strong GOTV effort might indicate. In areas that are always tight for both sides, wouldn't we see each side fighting like dogs? Perhaps what appears to be a weak Democratic effort is only weak in comparison to a much closer district in some other state, with the right comparison being what Republicans are doing in Bera's district. In other words, are the Republicans doing a lot? If not, the Democrats might not feel as much pressure.

      "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 Aug 07, 2012 at 09:40:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  OH-13 (0+ / 0-)

    Oh yeah, anyone know the Cook PVI for the new OH-13, where that crazy lady just compared Obama to Hitler?  Is this a safe seat for Rep. Tim Ryan (D)?

  •  About to vote here in Michigan! (0+ / 0-)

    Go Trevor Thomas!

    "There is a difference between being wealthy and being out of touch. One is remembering where you came from. The other is not knowing where others came from." - BoiseBlue

    by ScottyUrb on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:41:15 AM PDT

  •  TX US Senate seat beat teh Tea Party! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DCCyclone, KingofSpades

    How did Supreme Court decision ACA help the 23 million still uncovered? Ask the 18,000 Doctors of PNHP -- they're not waiting, FORWARD now to pass H.R. 676, the “Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act .

    by divineorder on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:41:46 AM PDT

  •  Uh... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Khun David
    Lamar Sternad is the only Democratic candidate that was born and raised in the United states. He will advocate for English as our official language.
    Shouldn't that be "who was born...?"

    WOID: a journal of visual language

    by WOIDgang on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:46:07 AM PDT

  •  Heidi Heitkamp will be too late (4+ / 0-)

    Joe Walsh will steal the "Heroes Health card" idea and introduce the bill with his name on it.

  •  what are Wayne Powells chances (0+ / 0-)

    in VA-07 ???

  •  probably close to zero (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Cantor just has to much money if he is really challenged even though he is not to well like in the district. Unless there is a late democratic wave I can't see him winning but I bet he is scaring the little weasel.

  •  Ras still has Obama up 1 (0+ / 0-)

    I feel the Romney rebound coming by the end of the week. I sometimes think Ras just makes up the numbers to fill his narrative.
    I agree about Cantor not being in danger although Powell is giving it a try. I heard him on some radio show yesterday and he said he needs 1 million dollars to get on the air with ads, Cantor probably has 10-15 million in the bank.

  •  Wow, FL-26 is starting to sound like... (0+ / 0-)

    ...a DC Mayor's race.

    "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

    by JR on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:16:57 AM PDT

  •  New Priorities USA ad, & stunning reaction (11+ / 0-)

    Here's a link to gets you to the ad:

    What's stunning to me is the early reaction to it, at least on my Twitter feed.  Wingnuts are going apeshit.  And the BuzzFeed reporters are, too.  They're all characterizing the ad as claiming "Romney caused cancer" and "Romney killed my wife."

    That's great.  It just drives traffic to the ad.  Which is a great, effective, and powerful ad devoid of any hyperbole at all.  I didn't watch the ad and think "Romney killed his wife," which is MoveOn-ish hyperbole.  It's just a laid-off worker talking about what happened in his life, in sequence.  And yeah, laying off workers which in turn takes away their health care does have these consequences.  Everyone can relate to that.

    I'm quite confident TV viewers won't see outrageous accusations or hyperbole that outraged wingnuts and BuzzFeed reporters see.  But if they want to help drive traffic to the ad with hyperbolic characterizations and a link, fine by me.

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

    by DCCyclone on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:23:19 AM PDT

    •  Power speaking "truth to Power" (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, Woody, bythesea

      without hyperbole.

      It's a competitive race! Thank you, Mr. President!

      "I hope; therefore, I can live."
      For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

      by tietack on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:26:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  HA HA HA (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Woody, The Caped Composer, bythesea

      A lot of, but not all, the BuzzFeed kids seem infatuated with the Romney campaign team and so they seem to almost get nervous when Dems hit hard.

      2012: It's about the Supreme Court. Follow me on Twitter @farrellmcmanus

      by HarlemUSA on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:49:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Those angry over this can go fuck themselves hard (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, bumiputera

      in a lot of different ways.

      I'm more than willing to call Democrats out for making a cheap shot, but this isn't a cheap shot. It's an ad that calls into question just how his background and his beliefs enable him to lead the country. In other words, it's what the goddamn election should be about! Is it really a fucking problem to talk about this? Too goddamn bad, Mitt. You don't like the fact that Bain is being discussed? Don't run on it! You don't like the fact that this guy mentions how his family doesn't have health care? WHY DON'T YOU TALK ABOUT WHAT THE HELL YOUR PARTY PLANS TO DO IN SITUATIONS LIKE THESE?!?!?!?!?! If you don't want to talk about it, don't run for president!

      We go through the same fucking bullshit every four years, where the Republicans claim moral superiority on a bunch of bullshit grounds and whine when Democrats want to talk about stuff that actually matters in peoples' lives. If I wasn't so used to it at this point, I think it'd drive me to have a nervous breakdown.

      Can you tell I am in an ornery mood today?

      "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 Aug 07, 2012 at 09:50:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Amazing ad (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I think it's just as strong as the Stage ad, if not even more so.

  •  Any polling? (0+ / 0-)

    Has there been any polling done on the Tammy Duckworth race here in Illinois?  I'm in a re-districted area that will bring a reliable Dem but I have seen nothing on Duckworth's race against scumbag Joe Walsh.

    "I am neither bitter nor cynical but I do wish there was less immaturity in political thinking." Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by djbender on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:34:22 AM PDT

    •  Interestingly enough, I haven't seen any (0+ / 0-)

      but most analysts agree that Walsh is the most endangered incumbent in the country. From what I've read, I'd expect Duckworth by double digits, but polling of the Illinois districts would be really nice.

      Male, 22, -4.75/-6.92, born and raised TN-05, now WI-02, remorseless supporter of Walker's recall. Pocan for Congress and Baldwin for Senate!

      by fearlessfred14 on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 08:24:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not since January (0+ / 0-)

      PPP polled it for House Majority PAC; Generic D was leading Joe Walsh 49-35. (They did Generic D because that was before the primary.)

      Editor, Daily Kos Elections.

      by David Jarman on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 08:54:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  ...and new Romney ad a head-scratcher (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bumiputera, KingofSpades, itskevin

    Romney attacks Obama on welfare program policy change:

    I tend to believe a major party Presidential nominee isn't going to air an ad with a message that hasn't already tested well in polling and focus groups.  So I want to give Team Romney the benefit of doubt that they know what they're doing with this.

    And yet, one flaw of messaging is failing to recognize what can and does actually matter to voters as a voting issue.  It's hard to make voters care about an issue they're not already self-motivated to care about.  Doing that requires laying a foundation of some kind.  For example, Obama and Dems can push women's issues that don't normally matter because of the contraception spat early this year that got some swing voters, especially women, to care about something they normally wouldn't make a voting issue.

    I don't know in what context voters can be made to care about welfare policy.  It's totally out of the blue.  Is there some fraction of voters who care about this?  This seems like yet one more thing that can razz up the GOP base while drawing only shrugs from swing voters.  Maybe that's the purpose, it's part of a "base" strategy?  Very strange.  The welfare issue hasn't even gotten a lot of news play, so hardly any voters are aware of it, and it's hard to see who will care about it.

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

    by DCCyclone on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:34:29 AM PDT

    •  Multimillionaire who hides his money and won't (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, bumiputera, bythesea, itskevin

      release his tax returns attacks poor people.

      I agree, it's strange subject to run an attack as on this year.  But it's doubly strange (and ineffective) because of the messenger.

      “The country tried everything Romney says, and it brought the economy to the brink of collapse”

      by Paleo on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:40:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The issue got play on Fox News for about 2 hours (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bumiputera, itskevin, askew

      All it is is waivers to test alternative work requirement strategies. There is basically nothing true about this ad.

      •  I know the ad is false, but what matters is... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades, itskevin

        ...does anyone care about this issue?

        That's why it's a head-scratcher.  I just don't see anyone at all caring about welfare reform.

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

        by DCCyclone on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 08:42:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  My guess is that the Republicans (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          R30A, bumiputera

          feel this will make those who are feeling the pinch but not relying directly on government assistance angry, because Obama is supposedly giving people checks to sit on their asses. The thing is, anybody who is likely to be motivated by this probably isn't voting for him, and those who are relying on direct government assistance in any way would probably take offense at the notion that they are mooching off of those working hard, when all they want is a full time job. Similar to what I indicated below, he might be turning off the very people he needs to try to defeat Obama with this ad.

          "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 Aug 07, 2012 at 10:01:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Flexibility that some GOP governors (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bumiputera, itskevin

        including Romney requested years ago. Oh, and as TPM notes, it's a little odd to see conservatives defending the federal government vs. giving flexibility to the states.

    •  What a poor choice for an ad. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Look at the race of the two people in the ad. That's right, both are white, and both are relatively young. One is a guy, but both work in manufacturing or at least in some sort of non-office-type job. In other words, these are what look like a factory worker in the Midwest, not a financial professional in Charlotte, North Carolina, or a tech worker in Silicon Valley. These are exactly the sort of people that Romney needs to turn against the president in dramatic numbers, but I think this ad might make some feel as though he were calling them welfare cheats or something. Granted, had he used non-whites, he would have opened up a different and possibly bigger can of worms, so this might be the least bad of two terrible options, but still, the images in this ad are powerful in the wrong way. I wouldn't be surprised if it hurt him far more than it helped.  

      This is to say nothing of the legitimacy of the policy points in the ad, which are probably nonsense.

      "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 Aug 07, 2012 at 09:57:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Will somebody please take a look at this? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TN yellow dog

    I know HCA has been dissected here before, BUT this is a big story on the NY Times.  Rocks are being flipped over, and they need to keep looking beyond just HCA cardiac catheterization labs, waaaaaaaaaaay beyond.  As in, follow the story all over the goddamned state of Florida.  This has been going on for a very, very long time.

    Anybody who wants to diary this and wants some personal background on HCA Lawnwood and associated facilities, kosmail me.  I have too much work to do today to write the diary, but I'll be happy to answer questions, fill in background.  I check the site a couple of times during the afternoon as a matter of course.

    "Fighting Fascism is Always Cool." -- Amsterdam Weekly, v3, n18 (-8.50, -7.23)

    by Noor B on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:37:01 AM PDT

  •  Look out FL (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Woody, fearlessfred14

    In reference to FL-26, our experience in TN is that, having taken over one political party, the Teahadis are going after the other.  They are putting very wing nutty candidates into races as Dems.

    Last week we woke up amazed to discover our Senate candidate was far to the right of his opponent Bob Corker. Our state party was just a little asleep at the wheel.

    It's been very hard to find out much about the guy who got the nomination, Mark Clayton--odd for somebody who got 30,000+ votes to be a complete cipher. (32K was the "official" tally but Clayton is claiming 50K votes.)

    But in addition to the anti-gay orgs, Clayton does seem to have reached out to the Ron Paul organizations. I don't usually think of Paul/libertarian types voting for theocons, but we're trying to figure out how in the world this clown got so many votes when he  did no ads and is a complete unknown.

    So are the Ron Paul folks aligning with other wingnuts to take over the Dem party?  

  •  Obama's approval fractionally net positive (0+ / 0-)

    today on RCP's average, first time since the start of July. It's never been more than net +/- 2.5 since mid-January, so basically an even split.

    Bush's net approval (per RCP) on election day 2004 was +2.7, almost identical to his margin of victory in the popular vote, but for most of this year we've seen Obama's average margin against Romney a few percentage points higher than his net approval rating (currently it's +3, which is pretty typical).

    My best guess is that this roughly 3 point better score for Obama-Romney compared with Bush-Kerry is because Obama has a greater "candidate quality" gap over Romney than Bush had over Kerry. But whatever the reason it's looking quite possible that Obama could win re-election even with a marginally negative net approval rating, perhaps as much as -4 or -5 (especially as he seems to have some advantage in the electoral college).

    Bush's 49.5 approval on election day was a record low for a president to be successfully re-elected, but Obama could well be set to beat that. He's currently standing at 47.6; I suspect anything north of 45 is likely to be good enough for him.

  •  Rep. Quayle wants apology (5+ / 0-)

    Rep. Ben Quayle's (R-Ariz.) campaign is arguing that a mailer from his primary opponent, fellow GOP Rep. David Schweikert, has sexual connotations, and is demanding an apology.

    Schweikert's campaign is not backing down from the controversial mailer it issued on Friday, which characterizes Quayle as someone who "goes both ways." The campaign says the wording refers to his flip-flops on important issues.

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

    by DrPhillips on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 08:48:50 AM PDT

  •  PPP NC: Obama 49-46 (11+ / 0-)

    “The country tried everything Romney says, and it brought the economy to the brink of collapse”

    by Paleo on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 08:53:06 AM PDT

    •  But but but, it's Leans Romney! (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, askew, MBishop1

      I bet McCrory is up by just 3 or 4.

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

      by sawolf on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 09:00:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  nice one (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, itskevin, askew, MBishop1

      There seemed to be a trend recently of PPP's polls showing Obama weaker than the previous edition, so it's good to see one where he's up a couple of points.

      I also like their comment that

      Every month in North Carolina the story remains the same- it's a sheer toss up and the way the campaigns have spent here reinforces that.
      Or as someone else once put it, "follow the money". Is the MSM ever going to wake up to this or are they going to be expressing astonishment once again on election night if Obama holds on in NC?
    •  Keeping North Carolina... (0+ / 0-)

      Of the Obama 2008 states, North Carolina was one of the two (The other being Indiana) that he has been considered least likely to keep in November. If Obama can keep the battle in North Carolina, then few if any of the states that he did slightly better on are likely to fail. Romney needs North Carolina, Indiana, Iowa and Virginia in his pocket before he can make this a down to the wire fight...

  •  Obama ahead in Colorado (0+ / 0-)
    PPP's newest Colorado poll finds Barack Obama leading 49-43 in the state

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