With just minutes to go until the 113th Congress convenes, the first order of business will be to choose a new Speaker of House? Will the new boss be the same as the old boss? Can Boehner survive a tea party insurrection or a pissed off New York/New Jersey delegation?
According to WJLA.com (ABC7 in Washington): Joseph L. Allbritton, founder of Allbritton Communications, parent company of ABC7, NewsChannel 8, POLITICO, died today at 87 of heart ailments.
None of them were about the Patient Protection & Affordable Health Care Act.
Today's opinion dump:
- Southern Union Co. v. United States
- Knox v. Service Employees
- Dorsey v. United States
- FCC v. Fox Television Stations, Inc.
You can read the live blog over at SCOTUSblog.com or wait here for Adam B's expert analysis later this afternoon.
Early this morning George Zimmerman was released from jail in Seminole County, Florida on a $150,000 bond by Circuit Judge Kenneth Lester.
Yet 2 hours north in Duvall County (Jacksonville), today Marissa Alexander faces sentencing for aggravated assault after firing a gun to ward off her abusive husband. A shooting in which no one was injured, much less murdered. Yet, a conviction for which Florida sentencing guidelines call for a minimum of 20 years in jail.
I'm on everyone's mailing lists, left and right, so I get to see the crap pedaled by our opponents. Most of it is highly ignorable, but this phrase stuck out at me:
Is Mitt Romney inevitable? Can Rick Santorum win the GOP nomination? Well, let's take a look at the calendar and find out.
2,288 delegates will attend the Republican National Convention. Meaning that a candidate needs 1,144 delegates to capture to nomination without a floor fight.
Let's start with the current state of the delegates:
Mitt Romney has secured 315 delegates, but with all results through last night included is projected to have a lock on 386 delegates.
Rick Santorum has secured 78 delegates, but with all results through last night included is projected to have a lock on 159 delegates.
Newt Gingrich has secured 105 delegates, but with all results through last night included is projected to have a lock on 120 delegates.
Ron Paul has secured 29 delegates, but with all results through last night included is projected to have a lock on 73 delegates.
Do we have a deal in Texas? Apparently we do and this will be the Congressional map. Feel free to draw your own conclusions.
Congressional (Plan C226) here
State house (Plan H303) here
State senate (Plan S167) here
Note: These maps are merely proposed and not final til the court writes an order.
Bottom line: "Dear San Antonio court, we realize that the legislature maps were problematic, but they still should have been your starting point."
I'm not sure what this really means, my guess is that now the San Antonio Court will wait for the DC Court to rule on pre-clearance in early February. I doubt a primary on April 3 is still possible, though April 10 or 17 might be possible depending on the pre-clearance ruling.
What does the November election have in store for us? Well, given the fact that Obama has yet to show a clear lead in the polls, 10 months out this race is too close for my comfort.
I'm going to work from national polls, because until the GOoPers have a nominee we won't see any state-by-state results.
Obama won in 2008 with 52.9% of the popular vote. Let's start there. No sitting President who has won re-election has ever seen his popular vote share decrease (ignoring the outliers of FDR's 3rd and 4th terms).
The polls have Obama well below this, so we do have so cause for concern.
Barring a massive drop in unemployment this year or Romney/Gingrich sticking their foot in their mouth so far they can feel intestines, 55% would be Obama's ceiling (LBJ and FDR are the only Democrats to have ever topped this).
A slight drop to 52% would be more what I expect. The question is more of what is the GOP's floor? My guess is in the 39-43% range (or Obama minus 10-16%) with a lot of otherwise GOP votes going third party because they won't be able to stomach voting for either Obama or whichever incompetent boob wins their nominating process.
Historically the best finishes by Democrats in the two-party era have been:
1. FDR 1936 +24.3% (he also holds 4th, 5th, and 7th)
2. LBJ 1964 +22.6%
3. Wilson 1912 +18.6%
At this point I think we can safely rule an Obama re-elect margin like that out unless we see a third party run (Paul, Trump, Johnson) that gets a good head of steam going.
In 1976 Michael Jensen and Dean William Meckling of the Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester discovered a cure in need of a disease, publishing an article that posited that, since managers had an incentive to feather their own nests rather than return value to the real owner of a company the shareholders, that the sole goal of a company should be to maximize the return to shareholders.
At first blush that seems rather logical, but just remember that Mitt Romney's company, Bain Capital, was designed for the sole purpose of "Maximizing Shareholder Value", damn the consequences to the people whose lives, and livelihoods, he destroyed. And many of The 10 Worst Economic Ideas of 2011 also have an attraction to many people in spite of the damage they have been shown to cause.
These simple ideas, while exciting to the 1% and the Republican spin machine that enables them, are slowly rotting our capitalist system from the core.
The 3-judge panel in San Antonio Federal Court hearing the Texas Redistricting case today decided to put everyone back into purgatory. Essentially, pending a written order confirming verbal instructions expected Wednesday at noon, unless the counsel for the Texas Democratic Party and Texas Republican Party come to a different overnight agreement, are everyone running for any office will need to continue filing through, for now, December 19:
Both parties emphasized that the deal affects the candidate filing deadlines only, leaving the issue of whether all or some of the state's primaries should be delayed unresolved.
The 3-judge panel will meet again on January 12 and, if the Supreme Court does not continue its stay on the interim maps, they could put everything back in motion as if nothing happened, or as is more likely order a single primary on the first Tuesday in April.
If you are running for office or intend to run for office. It is advised that you file ASAP lest the courts decide you missed your window.
If the SCOTUS continues its stay on January 9 then all bets are off.
The one thing that seems to be guaranteed is that the Texas GOP is screwing itself out of a chance at having relevance in the GOP Presidential sweepstakes as the chances of Texas taking place in Super Tuesday are slim to none.
On nearly every count, the deal favors the owners, who had sought an overhaul all along. The players made significant concessions, including a reduction of up to $300 million year in salaries, $3 billion over the life of the agreement.
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