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SSP Daily Digest: 2/2

by: Crisitunity

Wed Feb 02, 2011 at 3:35 PM EST


MI-Sen: Peter Hoekstra, having just started as a "senior adviser" at Dickstein Shapiro, let Politico know that, despite all appearances associated with his new job, he hasn't ruled out a 2012 Senate bid, saying he's keeping his options open. (I know that on my first day on the job, I like to loudly tell everybody that I may not be working there much longer. Really helps you get off on the right foot with your boss.)

MT-Sen: Jon Tester wasted no time in going after newly-announced Denny Rehberg, drawing connections between Rehberg and Michele Bachmann (and her proposed $4.5 billion in VA cuts). Bachmann will be a featured speaker at the event on Saturday where Rehberg formally announces. Tester raised $128K in Q4 with $562K, a decent amount for the small state of Montana but not much different from Rehberg's $553K war chest.

TX-Sen: You might remember talk from a couple years ago where ESPN analyst Craig James was interested in running for what was then expected to be a Senate special election to replace a resigning Kay Bailey Hutchison. That faded into the mists of time, but here's the first statement of interest I've seen from him since the race re-opened up thanks to her retirement. It comes up in the context of him saying that, yes, he believes people in Lubbock would still vote for him despite his role in getting Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach fired.

UT-Sen: An interesting piece about Orrin Hatch focuses mostly on how he's trying to avoid the fate of Bob Bennett by reaching out and engaging the local tea party crowd as much as possible; a local 'bagger comments that Hatch shouldn't expect their endorsement but his efforts will really limit the outrage that seemed to overwhelm Bennett. (Hatch also has an interesting selling point to offer them: if he's defeated but the GOP takes the Senate, that puts Olympia Snowe in charge of Finance.) Buried in the story is a provocative comment from Bennett's vanquisher, Mike Lee, who only says that he'll "fully support" the GOP nominee without saying anything about backing Hatch.

AK-AL, NY-13: Here are two House races where the potential challenger has the financial advantage, according to new Q4 numbers. One is the possible GOP primary for Alaska's at-large seat, where Joe Miller has $825K left in the bank, thanks to money he didn't get a chance to spend on his legal defense, whereas Don Young has $170K CoH. (Miller, of course, hasn't said anything specific about a race against Young in 2012, but he and Young have publicly traded some barbs.) The other is NY-13, where surprise Republican victor Michael Grimm actually finds himself in debt, with a net minus-$36K while Democratic ex-Rep. Mike McMahon, who seems to be laying groundwork for a rematch, has $17K CoH leftover.

IN-05, IN-06: Roll Call looks at the slowly-developing race to replace Mike Pence in the 6th. Most (if not all) the action is on the GOP side so far, with former Wayne Co. Sheriff Matt Strittmatter the only one with a campaign account open so far (which contains $39K). Other GOPers include 1990s-era ex. Rep. David McIntosh, Henry County Council president Nate LaMar, '10 Senate primary loser Don Bates, and '10 IN-05 primary loser Luke Messer... but it sounds like Messer, who almost beat the unloved Dan Burton, may be running in the 5th again, seeing as how Roll Call got Burton's office to confirm that Burton (frequent subject of retirement speculation) plans to run for re-election. One other wrinkle: Republican redistricting efforts to redden Joe Donnelly's IN-02 may wind up making IN-06 less Republican, so that might encourage Dems to at least consider playing in the 6th.

MT-AL: With Montana's at-large House seat suddenly looking like it's on track to be an open seat, we may actually get some decent Democratic candidates in the race. It's occasionally been a competitive seat, currently at R+7, though not really hotly contested since the last time it was open, in 2000. Democratic State Rep. Franke Wilmer of Bozeman is already floating her name for the race. (If she won, she'd be the first woman in the seat since the legendary Jeannette Rankin.)

SD-AL: Now this is interesting: Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (haven't heard anything about a rematch, but this might perk up her ears) is actually leading a hypothetical rematch by one point (46-45) against new Republican Rep. Kristi Noem, according to PPP. PPP points out that she lost by three in 2010, so that small shift is consistent with the small nationwide bump upwards for the Dems over the last month or two. Herseth Sandlin's favorables are 55/36, compared with Noem's 38/35 approvals. Over on the Senate side, Tim Johnson (who isn't up until 2014) is at 47/41 approval.

LA-AG: We've seen a couple dozen legislative party-switchers from the Democrats to the Republicans in southern states in the last few months, in the wake of several states' chambers finally completing their realignment all the way down to the state level, but nobody at a statewide level doing so... until now. Louisiana AG Buddy Caldwell, facing a potentially tough general election, plans to switch to Republican status. (I'd invoke the cautionary specter of Parker Griffith, but Louisiana uses a jungle primary so switching to a potentially tough primary instead may not be the kiss of death.) Since Caldwell was already the only Democratic AG who had joined the multi-state lawsuit against healthcare reform, his "Democrat" status was pretty negligible at this point.

MA-St. House: This may be one of the largest constituencies where I've seen a race end in a tie (although I'm sure someone in the comments can come up with a historic example of an even bigger race that tied). The November election in Massachusetts's 6th Worcester district in the state House was just declared a tie by a superior court judge, and (rather than flipping a coin, drawing lots, or sending them to Thunderdome) a do-over special election was ordered. Democratic incumbent Geraldo Alicea and GOPer Peter Durant both got 6,587 votes. No date has been set yet, but we'll all be on pins and needles that night, seeing as how Dems control that chamber by only a 128-31 margin.

CA-Referenda: A statewide special election is planned for some point in June, as Jerry Brown seeks a public mandate for extending increases in three different taxes (and he seems to think he has a better shot getting this through a public vote than the legislature). This is likely to be an entirely vote-by-mail affair, presaging a potential California shift in the direction of its west coast brethren. Somewhat counterintuitively (since vote-by-mail is usually considered to boost Dems), though, observers think this might skew the election toward older, whiter voters, as mail delivery is "unreliable in spots" (?!?) in heavily-minority Los Angeles County and voters there still tend to rely heavily on polling places. On the plus side, though, a recent PPIC poll found more support for extending the taxes among the 55+ set (56 yes/38 no) than among the entire population (where there was 50 yes/48 no support). Have the most seriously tax-hating seniors all fled to Arizona?

Fundraising: The Fix has a bunch more Senate fundraising numbers to report, building on the numbers we gave you yesterday. For the Dems, Bob Casey Jr. seems to be fully engaged with his race, pulling in $621K in Q4 for $1.3 million CoH, while the publicity surrounding FiliBernie seems to have been a big cash cow for Bernie Sanders, who raised $485K for $536K CoH. Bob Menendez raised $237K for $2.4 million CoH, while freshly-elected Joe Manchin seemed to take a breather from fundraising, raising only $18K for $377K. Among not just vulnerable Republicans but basically everybody else in the Senate, Scott Brown is still the unstoppable money machine, in terms of both cash raised and CoH: $734K raised for $7.2 million CoH. Richard Lugar raised $173K for $2.35 million CoH, while Olympia Snowe raised $79K for $1.2 million CoH.

Census: We're still waiting for this week's released of detailed 2010 data for Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, and Virginia, but the Census Bureau is letting us know that next week they'll be out with four more: Arkansas, Indiana, Iowa, and Maryland.

WATN?: Rod Grams somehow managed to be one of the least memorable Senators of my lifetime who managed to serve a full term (surprisingly swept in in Minnesota in 1994, easily turned out in 2000), and now he's working a job that seems befitting his anonymity. He's working as a Hill staffer, and not even on the Senate side: he's the new chief of staff to new MN-08 Rep. Chip Cravaack. (Recall that Cravaack did what Grams couldn't do in 2006: knock off Jim Oberstar, in what was a strange comeback attempt by Grams.)

Crisitunity :: SSP Daily Digest: 2/2
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Rod Grams
Not sure if he was mentioned last week, but he's an example of a first-term House remember who ran for Senate (re: conversation about Rick Berg in ND).

That Rod Grams thing is seriously bizarre
How many times has an ex-Senator become chief of staff for a House member? My guess would be zero.  

[ Parent ]
Especially a freshman representative. n/t


21, Progressive Democrat, MN-08 (home), MN-05 (college)

[ Parent ]
Since direct election...
Do we have any elected US Senators who later went to the US House?  It happens sometimes in State Houses during redistricting when two Senators get merged sometimes one will drop down, but I can't think of a US Senator doing so.

[ Parent ]
According to Wikipedia, two
Claude Pepper (D-FL) served in the Senate 1936-1951, and in the House 1963 to his death in 1989.

James Wolcott Wadsworth, Jr. (R-NY) was a Senator 1915-1927 and then a Congressman 1933-1951.

21, male, CA-15 (home and voting there), LA-2 (college)



[ Parent ]
ole Claude Pepper!
He chaired Rules towards the end of his tenure, and lived to like 100 or something. IIRC, he was defeated for Senate re-election in the middle of the McCarthy scare, as he was called "red pepper," a name that I suspect helped his popularity for other reasons in his later years.

[ Parent ]
1950
Actually, he was defeated for Senate re-nomination in 1950, by George Smathers.

[ Parent ]
A slightly different take on dropping down
is Jim Barcia of Michigan. In 2000, the Republicans redistricted Democratic US Representatives Jim Barcia of Bay City and Dale Kildee of Flint into a single district, the current MI-05. Barcia returned to the state senate, where he served until term-limited out this past election. Sadly, his seat was lost of the Republicans upon his retirement.

30, male, MI-11 (previously VA-08). Evangelical, postconservative, green.

[ Parent ]
Same thing with Jeb Bradley in NH. After Carol Shea-Porter beat him...
...in 2006 and then in a 2008 rematch, he ran for, and won, in a special election for state Senate.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10

[ Parent ]
And Roy Dyson in MD
Four years after being defeated for re-election in 1990 by Republican Wayne Gilchrest, Dyson won the St. Mary's County State Senate seat.  He's still there, despite its being an increasingly Republican area.

The Crolian Progressive: as great an adventure as ever I heard of...

[ Parent ]
The Kentucky Senate
has a former Governor in it. Julian Carroll, who served during the 70s, was elected to the State Senate in 2004.  

[ Parent ]
Mervyn Dymally
lieutenant governor in Jerry Brown's first (first!) term as governor in the 70s and U.S. Congressman 1981-1993, state Assemblyman in the 2000s.

My blog
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28, New Democrat, Female, TX-03 (hometown CA-26)


[ Parent ]
Doug racine in VT
LT governor in 2002 when he lost to Douglas for governor, then he ran for a chittenden county senate seat in 2006, where he stayed until running for governor in 2010.  he lost in the primary and is now Shumlin's HHS sec.

Top ten signs you're an SSPer #1: your favorite song is "Panic At Tedisco" and no one understands what you mean.

[ Parent ]
The Vermont Senate
currently has former Auditor Randy Brock and former Ambassador Peter Galbraith in it.

[ Parent ]
There's always Jerry Brown himself
Mayor of Oakland for a time earlier in the last decade after being Gov from '75-83....

Booth Gardner, WA-Gov in the 80s, IIRC ran for Mayor of some small WA town in the '90s -- and lost.


[ Parent ]
Heck, a former POTUS has done that.
Way back when. A digital cookie to the first to guess who. NO CHEATING!

26 White Male. Born and raised in MN-8, currently living in MN-5.

"A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything."


[ Parent ]
John Quincy Adams
didn't he die on the House floor or something?  

[ Parent ]
Obama will probably do it too
anyone remember that old Onion article about Obama running for AZ-Sen against McCain?

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 ]
He must need a job
He ran in MN-08 in 2006 and got crushed by Oberstar.

[ Parent ]
Speaking of Alicea-Durant,
... does anyone know what the status of the other unresolved state legislative race, NY-AD-100 (Kirwan-Skartados) is? I've been looking around for it on the internet and I can't seem to find if there's been any resolution. People stopped posting news stories about it weeks ago.

Moderate Libertarian Republican, MA-8 (college) / MD-7 (hometown)

LA-AG
The Democratic Party of Louisiana is now officially known as the Democratic Party of New Orleans ONLY. I wouldn't be surprised when Caldwell finally announces he's switching parties he'll say something along these lines:

"The Democratic party I knew is not the party I know today. It is the party of New Orleans. And I ain't anything like them."


19, Male, Independent, CA-12

To be fair the Mayors of Baton Rouge and Shreveport are Democrats


21, male, CA-15 (home and voting there), LA-2 (college)



[ Parent ]
The cities of Baton Rouge and Shreveport are majority AA
What I think the above commenter meant was that outside of the majority-black areas of Louisiana the Democratic party is rapidly crumbling to pieces.

Male, VA-08

[ Parent ]
They're heavily black but not quite majority
Kip Holden is actually mayor of the whole Parish, East Baton Rouge, which is 55% white.  It's pretty evenly divided partisan wise: he knocked off a Republican incumbent in 2004 and the parish swung from Bush to Obama.

Shreveport is about evenly divided racially, but Mayor Cedric Grover, an African American, won 64% in his reelection in 2010.

I get what was meant.  It's obvious to anyone that the LA Democratic Party is losing support.  But it's not quite out of talented people.  

21, male, CA-15 (home and voting there), LA-2 (college)



[ Parent ]
The Party of the Big Cities


My blog
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28, New Democrat, Female, TX-03 (hometown CA-26)


[ Parent ]
Almost
At least - it will be after November elections. When i make a projection, say, for Louisiana state Senate (now 19-19 with 1 vacancy) i get something like 24-15 or 25-14 Republican with almost all Democrats coming from New Orlean, Baton Rouge or Shreveport. And likely no more then 4-6 of these Democrats will be white.

Caldwell was classical white rural conservative Democrat (his only difference from old Dixiecrats seems to be his non-racist approach). His party really does't exist anymore (democrats turned left substantially last 50 years, especially on social issues), and his views are really much closer to those of modern Republican party. That's fenomena evident in the South, but not only there: what is Democratic paty in Nebraska outside of Omaha and Lincoln? Almost nothing as far as i know...


[ Parent ]
6th Worcester
There's a bit more drama to the story than your summary gives.  On election night, Durant led by 4 votes, after a recount this was reduced to one vote.  However, there was one ballot that had been mistakenly rejected because of an overvote in the governor's race that the Southbridge election commission ruled should not be counted, which forced Alicea to go to court to get the tie declared.

I'm an election clerk in the city of Somerville, so I know a thing or two about Massachusetts election law and marking that ballot as "spoiled" was the most braindead idiotic thing imaginable.  A spoiled ballot refers to a ballot discarded by election workers, an absentee ballot can never be considered spoiled. The machines we use reject ballots with overvotes, the idea being that you would give the voter a new ballot, but any absentee ballot the machine can't process is supposed to be handcounted at the end of the night.

I can forgive the poll works for making a mistake, there are a lot of rules to remember.  I cannot forgive the Southbridge election commission for failing to correct their error.  If they can't get very basic matters of election law remotely correct, they should step down and let someone who bothers to familiarize themselves with the relevant procedures take their place.

Sorry for the rant, I get annoyed when people can't do their job correctly.

28, Unenrolled, MA-08


Maybe of Interest to Folks
So, I'm a law student, and serve as one of the Managing Editors of the Law and Policy Review at my school. We pick two broad topics every year and have legal scholars, policymakers, practitioners and the like submit articles for them. We just selected "Redistricting in the 2010s" as one of our two symposiums for the upcoming 2011-12 year. If anyone is in the Bay Area, we'll be hosting speakers and presentations on legal scholarship in this area, hopefully complete with maps and data points. If anyone does scholarly work on this stuff, you should consider submitting an article!

Needless to say, as someone who reads SSP daily, I was stoked when our journal voted for the topic, and had to come here to share :)

24, SSP Gay Caucus Policy Committee Chair, Western Democrat; CO-05 (home), CA-14 (law school)


i live in los altos
and i really want to go to this! but i'll be in college somewhere further next year :(

18, Dem, CA-14 (home) CA-09 (college, next year). social libertarian, economic liberal, fiscal conservative.   Everybody should put age and CD here. :)

[ Parent ]
IN-SEN: State Treasurer Richard Mourdock running in GOP primary
http://www.politico.com/blogs/...

21, male, CA-15 (home and voting there), LA-2 (college)



Very interesting
I had heard talk of this. My prediction - the challenge will fizzle. Lugar still is somewhat popular among Republicans, but it's going to be his strength with Independents that carry him through. What say the Indiana experts?  

[ Parent ]
CA-Sen: Feinstein at 50/39 approval, up 14, 18, 20, 20 over Campbell, Poizner, Fiorina, Whitman
http://publicpolicypolling.blo...

In all likelihood, of course, none of these four GOP-ers will actually bother to run. My guess is Chuck DeVore offers himself up as a sacrificial lamb.

For daily political commentary, visit me at http://polibeast.blogspot.com/ and http://twitter.com/polibeast


LAWL
Will Chuck DeVore be able to make it out of the primary this time?

20, Male, Democrat, CA-44 (home) CA-12 (college)

[ Parent ]
If no one else steps up to the plate, probably
Keep in mind, there was a time during the '10 primaries, before Fiorina surged, where the Tea Party was in love with DeVore and moderates loved Campbell. This scenario, no surprise, ignited speculation over whether DeVore could coast on the Tea Party vote to victory. Then Fiorina money-bombed the state and that ended. So, I definitely think it's wholly possible that DeVore can win a GOP primary. He just needs to hope someone like Poizner doesn't run.

For daily political commentary, visit me at http://polibeast.blogspot.com/ and http://twitter.com/polibeast

[ Parent ]
wait
I agree that he can win a primary, but I don't think there was a time that you refer to where it was just Campbell v. DeVore, and Fiorina as an afterthought.  Carly got in November, and Campbell didn't move to the Senate race until January.  I don't think there were any polls in 2010 with DeVore in anything but 3rd. He was growing throughout the year, not losing support to Carly.

[ Parent ]
And Fiorina never "moneybombed" the state
She did advertise and spend more than the others, but five million dollars in California is in no sense a "money bomb".  

Of course, Campbell had no money at all, so it didn't take much for Fiorina to consolidate the vote since Campbell disappeared and no one evr cared about deVore.


[ Parent ]
Yes, I don't see any of them running
If DeVore doesn't run, then it will be another random right-winger and California has plenty of those.

24, male, African-American, CA-24, Democrat. Chair of the SSP Black Caucus.

[ Parent ]
It would have been nice if they had sampled someone besides Feinstein
One interesting note... Darrell Issa's favorables are 16/32, which is worse than Poizner 19/32.  That is quite an anti-accomplishment.

[ Parent ]
eMeg could eye the path that Feinstein took.
Feinstein: 1) lost the Gov race in 1990 to Pete Wilson, then 2) two years later in 1992 was elected to the Senate.

She probably still has a couple billion or so in her purse, and she's completed step one above...


[ Parent ]
Haha
your a comedian. NO. (Besides Feinstein beat a really weak Republican incumbent in 1992. Feinstein is far from weak.)

19, Male, Independent, CA-12

[ Parent ]
no
Whitman is not popular, and any Republican in CA starts with a big disadvantage. Whitman would lose to any who-dat with a D next to his or her name.  

41, Ind, CA-05

[ Parent ]
Though by a wider margin than DiFi
and DiFi lost in a considerably more Republican California. But hey, I'll be more than happy to see Meg try.

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28, New Democrat, Female, TX-03 (hometown CA-26)


[ Parent ]
Ben Nelson will not vote for health care reform repeal
And so did everyone else on our side except two no-shows, both pro-HCR......
Lieberman and Mark Warner didn't show up, both of course would have voted "no" on repeal.

All the Dem Senators who some here strangely questioned, except Lieberman who it's been documented has been vocal in support of the HCR law, voted "no."  I figured Manchin was the only possible "yes" vote, and he stuck with the caucus.

So Republicans have ZERO Democratic support for their stupid repeal, and not even a majority, let alone 60 for cloture, in favor.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
CA is almost a vote-by-mail state already
http://www.sos.ca.gov/election...
59.59% in last year's election.
And as high as 62% in a special election the year before.
And the percentage of vote-by-mail voters is increased exponentially.

Wouldn't be surprising if, as a cost-saving measure, CA goes all vote-by-mail after the '12 election.


SD-AL
Might depend on Tim Johnson's plans. She may well be better off waiting until 2014 to run for something again.

She could run for house in 2012.
Then turn around and run for senate in 2014. That possibility wouldn't surprise me at all.

26 White Male. Born and raised in MN-8, currently living in MN-5.

"A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything."


[ Parent ]
She could wait until 2014
When Kristi Noem will likely run for senate and take her seat.

[ Parent ]
SHS
should keep her powder dry for 2014 when she could run for governor or Tim Johnson's seat. It would be good for her in the meanwhile to join some energy company or something in SD. I mean spending 6 years at Real Player after being unceremoniously washed out in the 1994 wave didn't hurt Maria Cantwell. Democrats actually considered Cantwell the stronger candidate in 2000 because of her experience in the tech sector.  

19, Male, Independent, CA-12

[ Parent ]
George Pataki seriously considering 2012 presidential bid
http://www.politico.com/news/s...

He's just about the last person Romney wants in this thing.

For daily political commentary, visit me at http://polibeast.blogspot.com/ and http://twitter.com/polibeast


Im surprised
I know right after the midterms there was a lot of talk about it but it kinda died down within a week and we hadnt heard nothing until now.  

[ Parent ]
No, the last person
is Jon Hunstman.

[ Parent ]
I see Huntsman as a serious threat
Obama would have as hard of a time beating Huntsman as any of the other front runners.  

26 White Male. Born and raised in MN-8, currently living in MN-5.

"A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything."


[ Parent ]
If he makes it out of the primary, yeah
But you really think people in Iowa and South Carolina are going to vote for a Moderate Mormon?  I'd like to see the day that happens.  Evangelical Voters see Mormons as an abomination, and I highly doubt they would vote for him, even if he is extremely electable.

20, Male, Democrat, CA-44 (home) CA-12 (college)

[ Parent ]
Huntsman will go nowhere in the primaries
I don't think any Republicans will get within 100 feet of him, after having worked for Obama the whole past two years. He probably has a 20 percent ceiling in the primaries (being generous here). With winner takes all primaries having being severely reduced in importance, he can't win.

[ Parent ]
The only way
what Huntsman is doing that makes sense is if he's running to gain name recognition and presidential campaign experience for 2016.
And also maybe get in on all the VP speculation rumor mill when that time comes around this cycle.

[ Parent ]
wouldn't he be hurting his reputation
if he got in and completely fizzled (like Giuliani, for example)? There's a strong possibility of that happening so I really don't get the rationale behind a presidential run in 2012.

[ Parent ]
every republican nominee since nixon's first run, not counting W
ran at least once.  bob dole fizzled in 1980 and 1988 but still got nominated in 96.  reagan did well, but still lost against a sitting president in 76 and won in 80.  plus, Guiliani's big problem isn't that he fizzled, but he fizzled after being the front runner for the better part of a year.

Top ten signs you're an SSPer #1: your favorite song is "Panic At Tedisco" and no one understands what you mean.

[ Parent ]
except goldwater and ford
ford was kind of awkwardly grandfathered in, while goldwater was the party convention's last hurrah.

Top ten signs you're an SSPer #1: your favorite song is "Panic At Tedisco" and no one understands what you mean.

[ Parent ]
But every R who got the Presidential nomination
over the past few cycles was a --serious-- candidate in their previous run, coming within a gaffe of winning.

McCain won NH in 2000
Dole won Iowa in '88
Bush I won Iowa in '80
Reagan came within a few delegates in '76

I don't see Huntsman doing even close to that well. Though I suppose he could be following the Dole '80 model, getting ready for a run in '16, for the real run in '20 or '24.


[ Parent ]
i see reagan 76 and bush 80
but i'm not so sure winning NH for mccain, or iowa for dole is withing a gaffe of winning.  the bush 88 and w 2000 were still huge politicos in the contest and every republican stumbles in the iowa NH dance.  Still i agree about 60% with you about needing to be serious the time before.  huntsman runs the risk of being a lamar!, running in 1996 and 2000, but never making any headway, until he had no choice to switch to the senate.  there he sits to this day, desperately trying to climb the ranks of leadership and getting smacked down at almost every turn.  I know he has minor leadership right now, but he tried to be the whip and i think minority leader, only to be smacked down.

Top ten signs you're an SSPer #1: your favorite song is "Panic At Tedisco" and no one understands what you mean.

[ Parent ]
He and Daniels
Have the same base. I don't just mean in terms of voters. In terms of campaign staff, activists, elected officials, even student volunteers, they appeal to the same groups. The major result of a Huntsman entry is not going to be to help him. Its going to be freeze all of those people in place while they wait to see who comes out on top in the battle for the sane and electable platform dooming both of them.

I am already seeing this in the sense that it has frozen a bunch of people who were all set to start up a Daniels operation in NH.

26 Right-leaning, Euro-Conservative, Anti-Tea Party Independent


[ Parent ]
Pataki is a poor man's Giuliani, Romney doesn't care one bit about him......
Pataki is a joke.  He's a has-been, and a pro-choice has-been at that.  And this is in New York, he never had a national profile.  Even his initial win over Mario Cuomo, earth-shattering in a normal year, got drowned out by Republicans taking the U.S. House and also the Senate.

If Pataki runs, he'll probably drop out before Iowa, and at most stays in through New Hampshire and then drops out.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
Yup, Pataki will probably finish 8th in some
Iowa straw poll sometime in the middle of this year, realize he's got no money, and drop out then.

[ Parent ]
Perfectly said
I don't see why Pataki or Huntsman would make Romney worry, they are Dodd/Biden/Rudy type candidates that are unlikely to ever break 5% in the polling.

The one who would make him worry is Mitch Daniels. Romney is the tentative frontrunner not because he's particularly inspiring to the base, but because he's a competent manager-type in a field of Southerners and bomb-throwers. Daniels is another guy who fits that description, and although he has flaws of his own, he is less "slick" than Romney and doesn't have the HCR weakness. With Daniels, the nomination is really anyone's for the taking, without him, I give Romney the slight advantage.

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


[ Parent ]
I could actually see Huntsman making Romney worry......
I suspect Huntsman can rationalize away being Obama's China Ambassador more easily than Romney can rationalize away RomneyCare.  That's really fatal for Romney, RomneyCare.  Being Ambassador to China, even for the opposition, simply isn't as big a deal...both parties have followed the exact same China policy since Nixon opened the door there.

That said, "making Romney worry" isn't saying much.  Half the people on SSP could make Romney worry, even if Pataki can't!  Romney isn't even a paper tiger, he's a paper maché tiger...a small child could shred him.

The Republican who increasingly worries me is Pawlenty.  Yes I know some here will laugh, but frankly I see him as a guy who could end up the nominee much more likely than any of the most talked-about candidates.  He's running for sure, and he's got no black marks against him except for lukewarm performances in his own past elections which is a small thing given he won anyway.  That said, Iowa is make-or-break for him, since he's from neighboring Minnesota.  But if he does win Iowa, I can easily see him taking NH, too, not because Iowa by itself is influential, but because Pawlenty has the profile to build a broader appeal than a lot of the others and needs simply an important tangible win to get voters all over to take him seriously.  And I can see Pawlenty as someone whose chances of beating Obama remain very slim but still can make Team Blue sweat a little, the same way McCain made us sweat.  An Obama win over Pawlenty would be a single-digit win, not double-digits as against most of the others.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
Will Pawlenty survive a primary with Teabagger influence?
In the past, Pawlenty has advocated for Sam's Club conservatism, which seems to embrace, or at least not always reject, the use of government. He can always backtrack on his words, but his record will always be there.  

"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?

[ Parent ]
It's too early to really say
The Tea Party is really a fluid, evolving bloc that is more ideologically diverse than the 2010 elections revealed. We don't know how strong and influential it will be this time next year, nor do we know who the different factions of the Tea Party will gravitate towards. These folks are united in what they don't like: Obama, government spending, and insufficiently conservative Republicans. But there is diversity of opinion in what they do like: some are libertarians, some business-type economic conservatives, some socially conservative "culture warriors," some Bush-Cheney neoconservatives, and some who fit into multiple or none of these categories.

So it's not out of the question that Pawlenty gets some opposition from Tea Partiers, but we don't know how much or who else they will support. I can only see a united Tea Party if an "unacceptable" candidate wins several early states, and they decide to rally around a more conservative option.

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


[ Parent ]
It seems pretty clear
that, for better or worse, government spending is the big issue with the Tea Party. It may be more of a theoretical thing than a practical thing at this point, but while you don't have to be an anarchist, I'm not sure you can really talk about using government spending in any positive sense. That's why I find it hard to believe that someone who, as the article below describes, argues "...for increased government subsidies for alternative energy, for more health insurance coverage, and for using government to cater to the needs of down-scale voters" will win the Republican nomination unless he scrapes through like McCain.

A lot of potential candidates have votes or ideas that the Tea Party base wouldn't like, but I think it's far easier for someone like John Thune to explain away his TARP vote than it is for someone like Pawlenty to walk away from his emphasis on Sam's Club conservatism. It certainly doesn't mean it's impossible for him to win, but it probably makes it more difficult.

"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?


[ Parent ]
Yes I think he can. The thing about Pawlenty is...
...he's clearly conservative, there are no major strikes against him on that either on particular issues or his ideological consistency, and yet he's not a bombthrower.  And he can sell an inoffensive Midwestern persona.

Pawlenty's only problem on the surface is that voters are unfamiliar with him.  But in a weak field as the GOP has, that can be overcome.  You can't come up with easy 30-second ads against him.  You can't run an attack ad saying "you don't know much about him, so don't vote for him!"  There's just no anti-Pawlenty narrative ready-made.  Most other GOP wannabes, there are ads that write themselves, attack narratives that are ready-made.

I actually worry about Pawlenty.  Again, I don't see him beating Obama, but neither do I see him losing by double-digits absent an unexpectedly poor campaign.  McCain ran a poor campaign in a bad Republican year and still lost by only 7, and Pawlenty's going to have a hard time doing any worse than that.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
Nah, if President Obama is
our political mirror image of Ronald Reagan

I think Tim Pawlenty is their political mirror image of Walter Mondale....

President Obama knows how to go for the jugular, and has proven it.

I don't know Pawlenty well, so I'm not sure. But I suspect he's too "Minnesota nice" to know anyone's jugular.

I think he'll get lost in debates. R voters will be looking for red meat (thus the fixation of many on the right with Chris Christie), and Pawlenty will be serving up mashed potatoes without a hint of salt or butter.


[ Parent ]
Mondale is a misguided comparison......
Mondale was the unpopular Carter's VP, and therefore the proxy for an '80 rematch.  He was always a bad choice, and always doomed without the economy remaining stagnant which wasn't going to happen.

Of course no one was going to beat Reagan in '84 anyway, but Mondale fared worse IMO than Hart or Glenn would have.  The only person who would have performed worse in '84 than Mondale was his former boss, Jimmy Carter himself.

Pawlenty is new, he doesn't look like anyone before him.  If I had to come up with some kind of rough parallel, I'd point to Jack Kemp.

But I do agree with you that Obama knows how to attack, and how to win.  He's not going to lose to Pawlenty or anyone else who is talked about as a possible GOP nominee.

But Pawlenty worries me more than any of the others.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
You don't think
using the government to make a difference in the lives of downscale voters is a big no no for the Teabaggers? If not something like that, then what is? I don't doubt that he's a conservative, but similar to Huntsman, he doesn't strike me as highly anti-government. But in a lot of ways, that seems to be very out of sync with what the Tea Party base stands for.

Pawlenty worries me only in the sense that he's not an automatic loser like Palin. That's hardly lethal to us, but it could be damaging. He could easily do worse than McCain, if only because of the cycle he runs in, but he probably wouldn't implode. That makes mopping up a lot of extra legislative seats all over the country a lot more difficult.  

"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?


[ Parent ]
What does "using government mean" That's an abstraction, not very effective without...
...being able to point to things Pawlenty actually did in 8 years as Governor of a mid-size state that could piss off teabaggers.

Pawlenty actually gets decent coverage in the political media, as much as anyone, and I've never run across anything that could be used against him.

The conservative approach to "using government" is always some sort of incentive-based targeted tax break.  That's the only tool they ever use.  Teabaggers won't complain about that.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
Take a look at the article below.
It discusses what Pawlenty did in Minnesota in regards to health care reform. (It's clearly written in a favorable light, but that's not a big deal.) Maybe I am not being fair to the Teabaggers because I am painting them with too broad a brush, but I assume they would be uncomfortable with a lot of things the government does, including regulation. A lot of what any sort health care reform entails will involve regulating the industry, and I am not sure if this very anti-government crowd will be okay with that.

But let's say they are. Will they still be okay with the necessary government spending that comes along with expansion of coverage, even if we go the HSA/MSA route? They will probably like the fact that Pawlenty didn't go along with the legislature's desire to spend more on the poor, but what about accepting more Medicaid money?

Or take this highlight paragraph from his Wikipedia page:

In June 2006, Pawlenty signed a $999.9 million public works bill that included funding for additional work on the Northstar Commuter rail line (a change in position from reservations about the idea he initially expressed), an expanded Faribault prison, a bioscience building at the University of Minnesota, and science facilities at Minnesota State University in Mankato. The bill also funded a $26 million expansion of the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management.[82]

Will they be okay with that? I know you and I would be more than fine with it, but we aren't Teabaggers.

Basically, he doesn't seem to be solidly against spending money on the less well off. He has to advocated just that, at least in the past. That might serve him well in the general, but in the primary, it could hurt him, and badly, even if it's with a conservative mindset.

http://www.theatlantic.com/pol...



"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?


[ Parent ]
I know nothing of Pawlenty & health care, but that other stuff won't be a problem......
Even with teabaggers, I really don't think they're going to oppose Pawlenty over a handful of little state projects like that.  What matters is, were those projects part of a spending increase when the state lacked money, or a tax hike to pay for them?  Did those projects involve wholesale capitulation to a Democratic state legislature?  It's the context of those spending projects that matters, and my questions just above are part of establishing the context.

On health care, again, I've never heard of Pawlenty doing anything on the subject.  And no conservatives don't necessarily push regulation, they do, in fact, push public policies on health care that don't involve regulation.  They're ineffective policies, but conservatives will push for tax breaks for this or that and call it "health care reform."

I'm not saying there's no oppo to be dug up against Pawlenty, everyone has something that can be used against him.  But there's no silver bullet like there is with so many others, evidenced by the fact the political media never has anything to.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
Last person i want to see running too
Unlike all the current GOP frontrunners who are totally unelectable, Pataki could win.

It's been pretty clear he's been wanting to run for quite some time.  It's hard to see how he isn't the favorite if he starts first and runs a full blown campaign.  


[ Parent ]
Oh, please, I hope you're joking......
Seriously, I hope that's a joke.

Because Pataki is just that:  a joke.

As I said once before in this subthread, Pataki, if he runs, will drop out likely before the Iowa Caucus, and with certainty immediately after New Hampshire.  He offers nothing that Republican primary voters want.

43, male, Indian-American, Democrat, VA-10


[ Parent ]
And he has the charisma of a toad.


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28, New Democrat, Female, TX-03 (hometown CA-26)


[ Parent ]
Why the quotes on "senior adviser"?
Titles like that are often used for non-lawyers who work for law firms.

MD-St. Sen
Republican Sen. Allan Kittleman, who just stepped down as minority leader, has come out in favor of marriage equality, after 8/12 Republicans in the caucus announced their opposition. Where is his district? is he basically a dead man walking in the primary?

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/


Parts of Carroll and Howard Counties
Basically Baltimore exurbs leading into rural Western Maryland. It's a very Republican district; went 54-43 for McCain, 62-36 for Ehrlich, and 54-44 for Wargotz (vs. Mikulski). He admitted he was too moderate to be the Republican leader in the Senate when he stepped down; he's got to be DOA in the primary.

[ Parent ]
He's got to be running for governor
that's the easy explanation. With the MDGOP bench what it is, he's probably a front-runner for 2014. Plus he hails from a part of the state (non-Columbia Howard) that Republicans need to run up big margins in in order to run well statewide.

I disagree that he'd be vulnerable in a primary though. This is my hometown's SD, and I can say that while it's very Republican, the Southeast part of the district (Ellicott City, where most of the population is) is very wealthy, and consequently more Fiscal Conservatives rather than Social Conservatives. South Carroll is quite Socially conservative, but I don't see the votes being there to oust Kittleman.

In any case, it's probably a purely academic question because of A) Redistricting, and B) Kittleman isn't likely to be running there.

Moderate Libertarian Republican, MA-8 (college) / MD-7 (hometown)


[ Parent ]
Re: Republican Primary
I get the feeling he would do well enough in the primary. As you say, Ellicott City isn't socially conservative (in fact, in my experience, it is pretty liberal socially, at least surrounding LGBT issues), so I don't see this hurting him if he remains in an Ellicot City/NE Howard County centered district. As partisan as I am, I couldn't convince my parents to vote against him in the general, even though they voted for Democrats pretty much everywhere else on their tickets.

As a side note, I'm glad to hear this, as it means the lobbying my parents, and others, did for his support on this issue was successful.


[ Parent ]
WATN?
This has been my #1 website for several years now, but I can't for the life of me figure out this acronym.  It clear means something like "hard to figure", but no combo of words I've tried out makes any sense.

Can anyone help?

Actually a glossary might be a nice addition to the site.  Another one I can't decipher is "cat fud".  I presume it's pronounced like Elmer Fudd, probably has something to do with what we find in the litter box, and always is used in conjunction with some Republican intra-party squabble, but what exactly the connection is I just don't know.

Love the site, and all the little acronyms and phrases add to the color, but some source of translation/explanation would be nice!  :-)

Oh, one last thing - don't know if my comment on the topic had anything to do with it, but I've noticed that the site has become "work friendly", which I really appreciate!


"Where Are They Now" n/t


Politics and Other Random Topics

24, Male, Democrat, NM-01, Chairman of the Atheist Caucus, and Majority Leader of the "Going to Hell" caucus!


[ Parent ]
Where are they now?
Cat fud refers to a Far Side comic strip where a dog is trying to lure a cat into a clothes dryer with signs that say "cat fud" on it.  

[ Parent ]
Where Are They Now, I think.
Don't feel bad. There are a lot of acronyms I don't get right away, and even more that, for one reason or another, I absolutely hate seeing. If I never see someone use IIRC ever again, it'll be too soon.  

"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?

[ Parent ]
As everyone else has said
it's "Where Are They Now?"

"Cat fud" is an inside joke that's probably gone past its sell-by date but that we persist in using, that refers to a Republican primary which promises to turn into a bloodbath in a manner that may be beneficial to Democrats. It started with a now-seminal post two years ago by DavidNYC about the Florida Senate race that included the Far Side cartoon with the dog luring the cat into the dryer. The logic's a little contorted, though... are the Democrats supposed to be the dog, and the Republicans the cat? The assumption at the time was that the Republicans were about to throw over their sure-thing nominee Charlie Crist and replace him with unelectable lunatic Marco Rubio (and thus end up in the metaphorical dryer, I suppose). Just another example of our remarkable prescience, as that race turned out exactly as we called it!!!!1!

One other inside-joke acronym that confuses people is "NWOTSOTB:" No Word on the Size of the Buy. That's something you'd have to write out many times a day during the last few months before an election (and it's one of our pet peeves that reporters often neglect to include that in their stories about new ads going on the air), so we just started shorthanding it.


[ Parent ]
for future reference (for any acronym)
Googling is your friend. Try searching: "acronym WATN"

(However you'd be out of luck with NWOTSOTB. That's an SSP exclusive. For now anyway.)


[ Parent ]
that's how I found out YMMV
[your mileage may vary]

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 ]
South Carolina
Obama job approval 44-52 and leads Palin 47-41 and Gingrich 44-43.

He trails DeMint 45-47, Huckabee 43-49 and Romney 42-49.

McCain won by 9. Thought Huckabee would do better and Romney worse. Anyway, the state is definitely worth consideration.

http://www.publicpolicypolling...


Another state with no significant Huckabee / Romney gap
Another couple of southern / western states like that, and I might reconsider the conventional wisdom about those two.

[ Parent ]
Maybe
We might get a better idea next week - they are doing CO and NM.

[ Parent ]
Whoa. He trails DeMint by two?
That's incredible, although probably a result of the state's voters wanting DeMint to stay in the Senate. But even the results against Huckabee and Romney are encouraging. If he could see some growth amongst Independents, it'd be a truly competitive race.


"I have never deliberately given anybody hell. I just tell the truth on the opposition-and they think it's hell."--President Harry Truman. President Obama, are you listening?

[ Parent ]
This suggests Gingrich would be a monumental loser in a general election
I thought, perhaps, Gingrich could flip North Carolina, but, with numbers like these, that certainly ain't happening. Huckabee's the one who's moderately popular with southern Indies. As for Romney, I get the sense that he's holding enough moderates to edge-out Obama in some of these pink swing states.

For daily political commentary, visit me at http://polibeast.blogspot.com/ and http://twitter.com/polibeast

[ Parent ]
Gingrich is closer to Palin
Than the other two in most of these polls. Says it all.

[ Parent ]
DAves Tool featured at Stateline Blog
DAves Tool featured at Stateline Blog

"The rise of do-it-yourself redistricting
By Josh Goodman, Stateline Staff Writer

istock/endgerrymandering.com  
Dave Bradlee was a software developer for Microsoft for 20 years. He also has a fanatical interest in politics and maps. Not long ago, with the states' once-a-decade task of re-drawing political district lines approaching, there was a question that Bradlee couldn't get out of his head:
"Wouldn't it be cool if people could actually draw districts themselves?"

http://stateline.org/live/deta...

Joe Cooper



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