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AK-Sen: Libertarians May Cut a Deal, Begich Backs McAdams, and Other Updates

by: James L.

Thu Aug 26, 2010 at 10:03 AM EDT


It could be the unlikeliest Senate race match-up of the year: teabagging attorney Joe Miller vs. Sitka Mayor Scott McAdams... but we'll first have to see if Miller is indeed the victor. Since this race is still so unsettled, let's do a roundup of all the latest news:

  • The Math: With every precinct reporting, Miller leads Murkowski by 1,668 votes. But there's the lingering matter of all those absentees, which are still trickling in. Here's the schedule for counting them:

    None of the absentees has been counted. Absentee ballots had to be postmarked by Tuesday but could arrive up to 10 days after the election if mailed in the United States and 15 days if overseas. The Division of Elections will do its first count Aug. 31, with additional counts scheduled for Sept. 3 and Sept. 8.

    The Alaska Division of Elections says that "more than" 16,000 absentees were requested, and that 7,600 of them have come back so far, but remember -- not all of these ballots will be Republican primary votes. One estimate by Anchorage pollster Dave Dittman says that there are 5,000 GOP absentee ballots outstanding, but I'm not sure how that conclusion was reached, or if that guesstimate accounts for the ballots that have yet to trickle in. (Likely not.) In any event, Murkowski is going to have to win this pile by a large margin in order to come back from the grave.


  • A Third Party Play?: Murkowski says that it's "premature" to discuss a third-party run before all the absentees come in, but her camp certainly is not ruling it out. One option is a write-in campaign, but the chances of success are pretty dim:

    According to the elections coordinator in the Alaska Department of Elections, Murkowski has until October 28 to file as a write-in, in which case write-in votes for her would be counted if the aggregate total of all write-ins is greater than the number of ballots cast for the first-place candidate, or within the range that would require a recount. In the coordinator's 14 years, this has never happened in a state race.

    Another option would be to commandeer the line of a third-party... say, for instance, the Alaskan Independence Party. The first problem is that the AIP didn't even bother to nominate a candidate for the general election in the first place, casting doubt on whether it's legally possible for such a play to be engineered. (Remember, Wally Hickel was famously offered the AIP line after losing the GOP primary for the 1990 gubernatorial election, but he was taking over the ballot spot of a previously-nominated candidate.) In any event, the question is entirely academic, as the chair of the AIP has said that they would "absolutely not" let Murkowski join their ranks.

    The best option for Murkowski may be to go Libertarian -- that party seems entirely willing to listen to any offer she might make:

    If Murkowski loses the primary, there is a possibility that she might able to run on the Libertarian ticket in the November general election. But that would require the Libertarian Senate candidate, David Haase, to agree to step aside, and for the Alaska Libertarian Party to agree to put Murkowski on the ballot.

    Alaska Libertarian Party chairman Scott Kohlaas said he was open to the idea and that party leaders were discussing it. "There's a chance," Kohlhaas said on Wednesday.

    Haase didn't rule out the idea, saying he'd certainly listen if Murkowski wanted to step into his place.

  • Scott McAdams, The Anti-Teabagger: First, I encourage you to read this excellent piece by The Mudflats offering a wealth of background on how Joe Miller came from nowhere to force this nail-biter. The piece also has some color on Democrat Scott McAdams, and the details sound pretty good:

    Scott McAdams, little known to Alaskans outside the southeast pan-handle, is a popular small town mayor. He runs the city of Sitka and has balanced budgets, focused on education, served on the school board, and has even figured out how to sell water to India. He was a deckhand on a commercial fishing boat all over the state, and is all the kinds of things that Sarah Palin said she was, before the media began to shine a flashlight in all the dark corners. He's a "real Alaskan" in the style of the politicians of old, before oil was discovered and turned a libertarian blue state reddish. [...]

    McAdams who unlike Miller, is a fiscally conservative moderate Democrat, has executive experience, was born and raised in Alaska, and has worked with his hands in the fishing industry, suddenly finds himself with an incredible opportunity. One could even say that attorney and Yale Law grad Joe Miller who was born and raised "Outside" is kind of "elite," while McAdams is all about Alaska, and "real people."

    And here's the man in his own words:

    McAdams called the tea party-backed Miller too extreme for Alaska, in what is sure to be a theme for the Democrats if Miller turns out to be the Republican nominee.

    "I invite people who supported Senator Murkowski to please take a look at our campaign. I believe we are the moderate, rational, practical campaign, not the campaign of extreme measures and 19th-century ideology," McAdams said.

    McAdams said Alaskans value federal appropriations to develop infrastructure and don't buy proposals such as abolishing the federal Department of Education. Miller has said education is a function to be left to states and localities. He's argued that if the nation does not slash spending, it is headed for a "sovereign debt crisis" that would be worse for Alaska than less federal money.

    I like it -- he's sounding the right notes and drawing the appropriate contrasts. And he certainly has a lot of material to work with; just take a gander, if you haven't already, at Jed L's DailyKos profile of Miller's hard-right, anti-choice, anti-government philosophy. Sure, Joe Miller's resume is impressive on paper (West Point, Yale Law, Magistrate Judge), but that doesn't paper over crazy ideas.


  • No Democratic Switcheroos: The Twittering classes were full of speculation yesterday that some kind of deal would be worked out to swap McAdams on the Democratic ticket with ex-Gov. Tony Knowles, a man who has lost two statewide races in Alaska in the past six years. As we mentioned earlier, Knowles put those rumors to bed, saying he's not at all interested in a run. McAdams, for his part, is standing absolutely firm, and good for him. Also, good on Mark Begich for lining solidly in McAdams' corner:

    But McAdams has the full support of Democrat Mark Begich, who two years ago pulled off his own successful upset of a Republican senator, Ted Stevens. Begich on Wednesday had this to say of McAdams: "I like what I see."

    "Welcome to Alaskan politics. Anything can happen. Everything's viable," Begich said. "It doesn't take a lot of money, but it takes someone who is committed and hardworking, and can run a campaign. So I tell people and I've been telling people that this race shouldn't be discounted out, and has potential."

  • James L. :: AK-Sen: Libertarians May Cut a Deal, Begich Backs McAdams, and Other Updates
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    See, boys and girls, this is why we nominate viable candidates into hopeless races.
    Because when s*** happens on the other side, we benefit.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01

    Except for now...
    it looks like he has almost no money.

    [ Parent ]
    I think (hope) that more money will be coming as he now seems
    more likely to win (then against Murkowski)

    [ Parent ]
    I expect . . .
    his campaign will suddenly get a sudden transference of funds from several US Senators (Schumer) and some third party national PACs will take over.

    Money is going to show up, FAST

    26, Male, Democrat, TX-26


    [ Parent ]
    It won't take a lot
    Shumer can probably write a check for all McAdams needs.

    [ Parent ]
    Miller isn't too hot either
    Pretty sure Miller is all tapped out too.  He's already been relying on 3rd party money for his win.

    [ Parent ]
    According to opensecrets
    According to http://www.opensecrets.org/rac... :

    Joe Miller (R)
    Raised: $283,473
    Spent: $198,766
    Cash on Hand: $84,204
    Last Report: August 04, 2010
    legend PAC contributions $5,000 (2%)
    legend Individual contributions $174,552 (62%)
    legend Candidate self-financing $103,920 (37%)
    legend Other $1 (0%)

    Scott McAdams (D)
    Raised: $9,175
    Spent: $4,641
    Cash on Hand: $4,533
    Last Report: June 30, 2010
    legend PAC contributions $0 (0%)
    legend Individual contributions $9,175 (100%)
    legend Candidate self-financing $0 (0%)
    legend Other $0 (0%)

    It's perfectly possible that it's Dem forces that have been keeping their powder dry.  This of course depends on seeing whether McAdams was trying to raise money before this, and I somehow doubt he was.  If he were trying he'd at least have in the five-digit range.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01


    [ Parent ]
    They didn't think they had a chance
    Democrats saw no need to spend money and other resources on this race because Murkowski was presumed to be safe, both for the primary and the general. If she does indeed end up getting primaried out, and especially if she decides to mount a third party candidacy (thereby splitting the GOP vote), this seat becomes at least somewhat winnable. If that happens, you'll see Democratic money and big names drop in.

    [ Parent ]
    even when you're "not trying" ...
    ... the guy running in Idaho against Mike Crapo this cycle has raised more than four times this, and he didn't have a contested primary.

    [ Parent ]
    Well if he only has 9K CoH anyways
    That's really not that hard to make up, or believe.  Alaska's a cheap media market and a smaller (population-wise) state than Idaho, and, either way, the amount of money both have raised is small fries until the Dem machine gets working.

    [ Parent ]
    It just depends on how much they want to hammer a narrative
    If the election ends up not being a wash for Democrats, they're going to point, regardless of whether McAdams wins or not, that they got close in a Republican stronghold.  If the national mood lightens up in September and October, this sleeper race is definitely something they want to invest in early, especially from the campaign accounts of the likes of Schumer and other safe incumbents.  

    Even if the election starts looking ugly for the Democrats, the Republicans will be much more focused on taking Colorado/Nevada/California/Washington than they will be trying to defend Alaska, and it's not looking like they have enough money this cycle, even with Rove's organization.  If McAdams runs an actually respectable campaign, it's looking like this may well be as upset a gain for Dems as it was that Murkowski got off'd in the first place.


    [ Parent ]
    People like
    Tommy Sowers and Raj Goyle should prove that people are still willing to spend money on "unwinnable" races. I'd really like to see McAdams step it up.

    21, dude, RI-01 (registered) IL-01 (college)
    please help Japan. click "donate funds" in upper right and then "Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami." http://www.redcross.org/


    [ Parent ]
    50 State Strategy
    This is the perfect example of why the 50 State strategy is smart. You never know when a supposedly unbeatable incumbent is gonna slip up.

    McAdams sounds like a solid candidate who can win vs. the crazy Miller or even if a 3 way race develops. He may not have a lot of money, but media in Alaska is dirt cheap - it won't take a lot of $$ for him to be competitive.

    A hearty Thank You to the Teabaggers and Sarah Palin for making a rock solid red GOP senate seat a competitive race.


    [ Parent ]
    And why Howard Dean needs to be kept in the fold
    I don't always want him out front and center and talking (lol), but he really attacked the trend of avoiding Dem-unfriendly areas.  And he did it with some pretty dang good success.

    QWhich isn't to say we don't need constant new blood in the process to keep adapting going forward.  Its an eternal struggle in districts and new ideas will always be needed.


    [ Parent ]
    I personally dislike the 50-state strategy up to a point
    Id much rather be investing in the suburban vote in many areas versus Alabama.

    Now, when an opportunity like this falls in our laps, hell yeah!  Imagine 2 Democratic Senators from AK.  And Im hoping Marshall pulls it out because Burr is very beatable if she makes it work.  (Im watching Project Runway...)  


    [ Parent ]
    I like the 50 state strategy a lot
    Building a large power base is key to being able to take advantage of situations like these, as well as preventing one's group from becoming marginalized in bad times in bad times.

    Plus, you have more people to choose from when you need to make a coalition.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01


    [ Parent ]
    It's all about the power and perks
    The Murkowski camp's mulling of a third party candidacy if she loses the primary (and Joe Lieberman taking a similar route via an independent candidacy in 2006) symbolizes the problem with way too many of our elected leaders today.

    They're not about serving the people who elected them. They're about milking the power and perks that come with being elected to public office, and holding on to that power or perks at all costs. It's not about actually accomplishing something good with the power bestowed to them. It's about doing whatever is necessary to get and hold on to that power, no matter who gets screwed over in the process.

    If Alaska Republicans still want Lisa Murkowski as their Senator, that's their right. If they want to send Joe Miller to Washington in her place, that's their right too. That's why we have elections.

    If Miller is still in the lead once the absentee ballots are counted, Murkowski should accept the judgment of the voters and step aside, just as Bob Bennett did after he got voted out by Utah Republicans. If she wants to endorse McAdams out of spite and/or go on a five-day bender afterwards, that's her choice.

    But A third party candidacy after losing her primary would show that she, like so many of her fellow politicians, is only out for herself and not for Alaskans.

    So make your decision Senator. Do you really care about Alaskans? Or is not just about yourself?


    Hopefully just about herself
    more cat fud that way.

    21, dude, RI-01 (registered) IL-01 (college)
    please help Japan. click "donate funds" in upper right and then "Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami." http://www.redcross.org/


    [ Parent ]
    People still have to vote for them in the general election
    If you can lose a primary and still win a general election...then you still deserve to be elected. But agree, there is a degree of arrogance in elected officials.  

    [ Parent ]
    Lieberman is worse
    Lieberman was running against someone the general world thought was normal.

    Murkowski could legitimately be against Miller's far right wing views.  She has been pro-choice in the past.  She might also fear some of the crazy rhetoric.  Admittedly its most likely a combination of these, power hunger and a hate for Palin.

    But Lieberman was far more self-serving than Murkowski could ever be in this race.


    [ Parent ]
    I agree on Lieberman, but an election is still an election
    I totally agree that Lieberman is very self-serving, and his actions since that 2006 election confirm that. But it doesn't mean that Murkowski also wouldn't be self-serving by ignoring the will of her constituents and trying to mount a third-party challenge after losing a primary.

    Whether the decison of the Alaska GOP Primary voters make sense to us or not, the bottom line is that this was their decision. They didn't want to re-nominate Lisa Murkowski. Those voters now have to accept whatever consequences emerge from that decision - good or bad. Murkowski should do likewise.


    [ Parent ]
    But this wasn't an election decided by all willing Alaskan voters:
    This was a primary election decided only by all willing Alaskan declared-Republican voters.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01

    [ Parent ]
    Exactly
    I don't think someone who gets only what, 30,000 votes in a GOP primary is really a HUGE repudiation of Murkowski overall.

    Even if she enteres the GE, if she loses would she be smart to avoid running against Begich in 2014.  I bet she'd beat him by 15 points at minimum.


    [ Parent ]
    But she would never get the nomination
    Murkowski has close to zero chance of running against Begich.  If she can't win this primary as an incumbent, no way in hell will she beat Parnell.

    [ Parent ]
    If Parnell runs
    But then if Parnell runs, I see Murkowski running for governor.  And I think she wins that in the primary and GE.

    My mian point is that just because Murkowki lost this primary doesn't mean her career is over.  


    [ Parent ]
    I don't think I agree, at least not in principle
    I dont know enough about Murkowski to be able to say much about her actual motivations. But I don't think I agree with your argument that "a third party candidacy after losing her primary would show that she [..] is only out for herself and not for Alaskans." Not necessarily.

    She may, for example, genuinely think that Miller is not right for Alaska, and may sincerely fear Miller's impact (or lack thereof) as her successor. She may genuinely believe that Miller would be so bad for Alaska, it's worth it running against him as a third party candidate even if it pisses off half of her own party.

    You make this about politicians "serving the people who elected them," and showing disrespect for their will if they go third party after losing their primary. But Murkowski wasnt elected Senator by the GOP primary electorate. The people who elected her are the Alaskans, as a whole, and that's whom her first allegiance should, ideally, be to. If she genuinely believes that the 50,000 people who voted Miller into a lead made a big mistake that will cost Alaskans, the people she actually serves, badly, then running as a third party candidate could entirely be a show of principle.

    Most likely, you are partly right and it would at least be a mix of self-interest and conviction. But I don't buy the whole "it's all self-interest" argument. After all, if she would stand as a third party candidate, that would be a pretty politically courageous move. SHe would thoroughly piss of her own party - both the locals who voted for Miller and the national establishment, which may have liked her better than Miller but will definitely not want to see them splitting the vote.

    But again, I don't know too much about Murkowski personally, so I can't say what her motivation would be. But I disagree that a candidate who goes third party/indy after losing his primary is by definition showing himself up as being only out for himself. I can think of races where it would have been an act of courage and decency for the losing primary candidate to run against the crazy that defeated him. And I also don't agree that a candidate who does that is violating his duty of "serving the people who elected him". He doesn't foremost serve his party faithful - once elected, he serves his state.

    38, Male, SP, NL / LMP, HU


    [ Parent ]
    Well i'll say this
    Regardless of what happens seems like Scott McAdams would make a good Senator. Guy dosen't seem to be a hack and seems real good on the issues. As for Joe Miller. I actually took the liberty to look this guy up on wikipedia (guy's got a full page wiki complete with photo and everything). Guys freaking nuts. I'm guess a Miller supporter wrote this because it includes everything he stands on the issues. Check out these gems.

    End off-budget expenditures: Receipts and disbursement from the Social Security Trust Funds, and general accounting for the Federal National Mortgage Association and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, would be included within the federal budget.

    Line-item veto: A Constitutional Amendment to authorize the president to veto specific spending items.

    Limit increases in government spending to the rate of inflation: The federal government would be required to cap spending to the rate of inflation plus the percentage of population growth.

    Hiring freeze for all non-essential government employees.
    Establish a Sunset Committee: This committee would scrutinize federal programs to determine if they are necessary and where they can be cut.

    Earmark Reform: Would place a moratorium on all earmarks until the budget is balanced, and then require a 2/3 majority to pass any earmark. Additionally, budget requests by members of Congress would be subject to the public hearings process.

    Abolish the Department of Education the National Endowment for the Arts
    Cut off American funding for the United Nations
    Reduce American foreign aid
    Repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
    Miller opposes cuts to Medicare or Social Security benefits for current retirees. However, he supports phasing out and privatizing Social Security and Medicare for younger workers.

    He refers to scientific evidence for climate change as "dubious at best."

    Miller is pro-life, defining 'life' as "from the moment of conception to the time of natural death" without exception.

    Earmark Reform, yeah that will go well with the pork hungry people of AK. Thought I should add this incase you didn't know where he stoon on the issues. But since he's a teabagger you probally didn't bother to look because you probally knew the answers.


    Miller -- is this all the crazy you have?
    I'm willing to believe he could well be crazy -- he is challenging a Republican from the right in this environment.  But those quotes don't really seem to show it.

    End off-budget expenditures:

    I wouldn't even call that Conservative, let alone wing-nut.  It is simple good-government transparency.

    Line-item veto: A Constitutional Amendment

    I personally dislike the line-item veto because of how it changes balance of power, but it is supported by people in both parties.  He is sane enough to recognize that the Supreme Court has already removed it, but that an Amendment would still get the job done.

    Limit increases in government spending to the rate of inflation (plus population growth)

    This would be far too moderate for most Republican primaries.  Something similar is already in place for some states and local governments.  (I'm not saying it works out well, but it isn't wing-nut.)

    Hiring freeze for all non-essential government employees.

    Again, if your goal is to reduce costs (instead of stimulating the economy), this is a pretty important first step.

    Establish a Sunset Committee: ... scrutinize federal programs to determine if they are necessary and where they can be cut.

    If I believed committees were effective, I would count this as simple good-government.  Republicans are always saying that the budget can be balanced with cuts alone, yet refusing to name any cuts.  That he has even half a plan puts him ahead of most candidates -- incumbent or challenger.

    Earmark Reform: Would place a moratorium on all earmarks until the budget is balanced, and then require a 2/3 majority to pass any earmark. Additionally, budget requests by members of Congress would be subject to the public hearings process.

    Again, I wouldn't even call that Conservative, let alone wing-nut.  The hearings are simple good-government transparency.

    Abolish the Department of Education the National Endowment for the Arts
    Cut off American funding for the United Nations
    Reduce American foreign aid
    Repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

    Most Conservatives support these.  Most voters support reducing foreign aid.  [Admittedly, only to an amount far greater than what we actually spend -- but voters aren't going to be suddenly more informed about that in the next few weeks.]

    Miller opposes cuts to Medicare or Social Security benefits for current retirees. However, he supports phasing out and privatizing Social Security and Medicare for younger workers.

    Most Republicans have changed to different terminology because "privatizing Social Security" sounds scary, but the goal is still mainstream conservative -- and maybe even a good goal.

    He refers to scientific evidence for climate change as "dubious at best."

    Do you really expect an Alaska Republican to say otherwise?

    Miller is pro-life, defining 'life' as "from the moment of conception to the time of natural death" without exception.

    Sounds like he would probably meet the endorsement criteria for Right To Life of Michigan -- and most Republican candidates in Michigan do.  Unless he were running a single-issue campaign, it is hard to see that disqualifying him in a Red State.


    [ Parent ]
    Well, then you're a wingnut.
      Because phasing out social security and medicare is neither a good idea nor mainstream.

     

    24, Male, GA-05


    [ Parent ]
    "Most conservatives support these"
    What is your set of "most conservatives"?

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01

    [ Parent ]
    What I don't understand is this:
    If voters in Alaska like their pork, and Joe Miller ran against pork, why did he win? Even if that was a very conservative republican electorate, chances are he will still win in November, McAdams chances are still very low, lets be honest. So maybe the good people of Alaska don't like their pork as much as everyone outside Alaska say they do.

    19, gay male, IL-7, MN 4 (college), Dem

    It's dangerous
    to extrapolate the feelings of 50,000 GOP primary voters to the entire Alaskan electorate.

    [ Parent ]
    That's very true
    In any other year (except 1994), I'd say we have a good shot at this one. Sadly, this year I think our shot probably depends on whether Murkowski runs as a third party.  

    [ Parent ]
    I'd prefer a Murkowski endorsment over a third party run
    If she runs as a Liberterian, she probably wins.  McAdams best chance is if she endorses him.  It would still be difficult given that he isn't Paul or Angle (or even Buck), but its a solid 10% shot.

    [ Parent ]
    According to one posters on Redstate...
    ... that I think lived in AK, there is an explaination.

    AK gets credited for a lot of Federal funding that isn't really 'pork' in the traditional sense.  Supposedly the FAA and the National Parks department, Energy Dept, etc. spend significantly in AK because of the government assets there and the strategic geography of AK.  Not all the Fed money is spent on roads, bridges, and more traditional 'pork' items.

    It's Redstate, so who knows, but it would tend to explain why AK gets so much money yet disdains 'pork' spending as much as any other conservative state.        


    [ Parent ]
    Well, OK...
       But right-wingers routinely regard such spending as pork anyway.  Republicans even attack scientific research funds as pork now.

    24, Male, GA-05

    [ Parent ]
    Understanding Pork
    Or maybe the voters aren't consistent, and oppose pork in general but not in specific cases -- or at least not in their own.  Sort of like how Congress as a whole can have abysmal approval ratings, but most incumbents still get re-elected.

    [ Parent ]
    Everyone runs against pork
    No one openly says I'm going to get as much money for my state as I can amid our $1 tillion deficits.

    Its a nice soundbite, that's all.  No one wants the bridge to nowhere in Alaska, but we all want more money for projects that beneift us directly.

    I'd also say that assumption about Alaska seem overstated.  I don't think they are that much more into prok spending as other states.  I also don't think they have this presumed love affair with incumbents (even before 2008).  

    They just like who they like, and that's it.  I don't think ti can be pigeon-holed that much.


    [ Parent ]
    Here's the only thing I don't understand
    Why do people consider Joe Miller to be such a terrible candidate? He's a West Point grad, decorated former Army officer, Yale-educated lawyer, former judge, and has a master's in economics. He's still Some Dude, but he's a pretty well-educated and qualified Some Dude. His positions are conservative, but not too conservative for a place like Alaska, and he's a Tea Party product, but has not said or done anything stupid like Paul, Angle, or even Buck. He doesn't have much money, but that will probably change now that the race has made national headlines.

    The same goes for McAdams. He's a successful mayor from one of Alaska's largest cities. His positions are about what you would expect from an Alaska Democrat. Once again, no money, but now that the race has attracted national interest that will change.

    My point is, this race is now Generic R vs. Generic D. Is that really such a bad thing?

    20, CD MA-03/NH-01/MA-08


    Joe Miller is not Generic Alaska R
    Need we remind you:

    Miller has called for across-the-board cuts, phasing out government Medicare and Social Security, and getting rid of the federal Department of Education because it is not in the Constitution, leaving the function to the states. He's going well beyond positions that Palin advocated when she was running to be governor of the state and those she espoused as governor.

    Also, Jed L lays out a pretty damning profile on Miller's anti-abortion rhetoric.

    No, this dude is pretty extreme.


    [ Parent ]
    Oh, I see
    Yeah, he is a little more conservative than I thought. I knew he was very anti-abortion rights (which I don't think is all that out of line for the DeMint wing of the GOP, which Miller belongs to), but I didn't know that he considered contraception a form of abortion as well. That's a tad extreme, I gotta say.

    20, CD MA-03/NH-01/MA-08

    [ Parent ]
    Actually, if you read the profile carefully
    It doesn't say Miller thinks contraception is a form abortion, it suggests that the author of the piece thinks there's a good chance he would feel that way given his extreme abortion stance.

    I don't think you need to impute a stance Miller hasn't taken. He's still extreme regardless.  


    [ Parent ]
    The anti-contraception schtick
    fully proves that the anti-abortion crowd--at least those that use this schtick--aren't actually pro-life as much as they are anti-sex.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01

    [ Parent ]
    I agree
    Except for Abortion and UN funding, Miller's positions on most things are typical conservative fare.

    Didn't Newt Gingrich want to kill the NEA?  

    When they are being honest with themselves, most GOPers want the Department of Education abolished, but they know that sounds extreme, so they don't say it.  Actually that Department has only existed for 30 or so years.  Most funding for Education is at the state and Local level anyway.  

    Privatizing Social Security was W's idea too.  

    Sorry, Miller is very conservative but his ideas are no different than Coburn, Inhofe and quite a few others.  

    Angle and Paul are significantly more 'out there' than Miller.    


    [ Parent ]
    Yeah, exactly
    Bob Dole campaigned on eliminated the Dept. of Education in '96 and won Alaska. That doesn't necessarily mean it's a good idea, but a lot of Republicans believe it. Same goes for a lot of his budgetary beliefs. Not popular views on this site, but not unreasonable for someone running as a conservative Republican. The only place where I'd say his views are extremist are on social issues like abortion and contraception.

    20, CD MA-03/NH-01/MA-08

    [ Parent ]
    Okay, I see Miller as pretty extreme but in fairness to him...
    We may be mischaracterizing his views on contraception (see my note above)

    [ Parent ]
    I'd love for the GOP to try it again
    Campaigning against the Dept of Education was great fodder for Dems going forward.  It didn't deliver much tangible change in COngress immediately, but since that fateful course I've felt the GOP really mismanaged how they are perceived on education.

    [ Parent ]
    I agree with MassGOP
    Based on resume alone I would say Miller is way more qualified to be a US Senator than Murkowski.

    Lets be honest Murkowski got her senate seat because of nepotism. She never got over the stigma of her Daddy handing her the seat. That's why she had such a close race 6 years ago and I think that also played a role in why she lost.

    From what I've read and seen of him Miller is a really smart guy. I mean he's a Yale Law school and West Point grad.

    While he might be a conservative right winger he's not a moron. I would say he's probably more like a Mike Lee than a Sharon Angle.

    The way people are talking here you would think the GOP nominated Basil Marceaux. They didnt. They nominated a conservative Republican Gulf War Vet, West Point and Yale Law School Grad to run for Senate in Conservative Alaska in a Republican wave year.


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    [ Parent ]
    I don't see how
    you could possibly say this with a straight face:

    The way people are talking here you would think the GOP nominated Basil Marceaux. They didnt. They nominated a conservative Republican Gulf War Vet, West Point and Yale Law School Grad to run for Senate in Conservative Alaska in a Republican wave year.

    Basil Marceaux? Are you fucking kidding me? No one is talking like that. Some of us are, however, taking issue with Miller's extremely right-wing, teabagging philosophy. I did give credit to Miller for his impressive bio.


    [ Parent ]
    I don't see why people are calling it a Republican wave year
    I don't see a Republican wave happening.  Maybe a little ripple, the sort from throwing a stone into a pond.

    The reason I say this is that while the Republican strategy has been to shit on the Democrats, they haven't done much to make themselves look any better.  So now we have two parties covered in shit.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01


    [ Parent ]
    They don't have to look good, they just have to be the alternative..
    .. to the party in power, which they are.  In 2006, the Dems didn't articulate a plan either, yet they took back Congress.  

    The GOP wave is real, no question, the only question is the size, and lately it looks to be building significantly.  


    [ Parent ]
    What do you define as a wave?
    Taking back 10-20 seats net is not a wave--especially if it's punctuated by losses elsewhere.

    I'd say +25 or so House seats is approximately the lower limit.

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01


    [ Parent ]
    Anything lower than 30 seat loss is a major D victory at this point
    A wave would be at least a net of 25 seats.   At this point that is very plausible for the GOP.  Double that is not impossible, by any means.  

    [ Parent ]
    Too conservative?
    His positions are conservative, but not too conservative for a place like Alaska

    We don't know whether they are or not. That's what the general election will be about.

    "I'm not a member of any organized political party, I'm a Democrat!"
    --  Will Rogers  


    [ Parent ]
    Murkowski is not getting the Libertarian Party line...
    I read the price they want from Murkowski for the party line was for her to agree to privatise the Federal Reserve Bank.

    I cant see that happening anytime soon so I doubt a deal will be made.

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    Where did you read that?


    [ Parent ]
    Ancorage Daily News
    "Libertarian Haase is the only third party candidate in the race, so that would be the only option for Murkowski to join a new party for a run. Haase would surely press Murkowski on the Federal Reserve, which is his focus. "Let's take the Federal Reserve, nationalize it and take that income earning capacity and turn it over to the people to finance Social Security and Medicare," Haase said."

    Read more: http://www.adn.com/2010/08/25/...


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    [ Parent ]
    That doesn't sound exactly like privatizing the fed
    it just sounds like diverting Federal Reserve funds to that.

    ...and...doesn't the government already do that anyway?  Don't profits that the Federal Reserve makes go into government funds anyway?

    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01


    [ Parent ]
    Hmm, I read that article too...
    ... but I didn't read that quote as saying that "the price they want from Murkowski for the party line was for her to agree to privatise the Federal Reserve Bank."

    Way I read it, the reporter is speculating that Haase "would surely press Murkowski" on the subject, and then quotes what Haase has been saying about the Fed to illustrate why he thinks that Haase would make it his main point.

    Seems reasonable, but it's still speculation at this point.

    38, Male, SP, NL / LMP, HU


    [ Parent ]
    Also-
    He's not saying he wants to have the Federal Reserve privatized, he's saying he wants it nationalized (whatever that means in context).

    38, Male, SP, NL / LMP, HU

    [ Parent ]
    Interesting...
    ...that would make it an official state bank instead of a de facto one... something I would heartily approve, but certainly the antithesis of libertarian philosophy.  They are generally very anti-central bank.  

    [ Parent ]
    She should just agree...
    No way it will ever happen. And people in Alaska don't care about the federal reserve bank anyway.  

    [ Parent ]
    Yeah, now there is an issue people are debating in fairbanks taverns
    not

    [ Parent ]
    Heh, I just noticed the pun.


    party: Democratic, ideology: moderate, district: CT-01

    [ Parent ]
    The federal reserve bank is already privatized...
    It is not a government entity in any way shape or form.  It is a non-profit institution with shares owned by member banks... almost all of them private entities (there may be some credit unions and the South Dakota State Bank or something that are members).  The government only provides very limited oversight (gets to pick the board of governors).. otherwise, it is no different than a giant credit union with banks as its members.

    [ Parent ]

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