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SSP Daily Digest: 2/25

by: DavidNYC

Fri Feb 25, 2011 at 8:17 AM EST


FL-Sen: Here's one way the rich & powerful are different from you and me: You can, if you're GOP state Sen. Mike Haridopolos, manage to leave clients worth $100,000 of income and a house valued at $400,000 off of your financial disclosure forms and have it be judged "inadvertent." Here's another way: you get to have the people doing the judging be your friends. Indeed, the chair of the committee responsible for punishing Haridopolos, former FL GOP chair & state Sen. John Thrasher, had endorsed his senate bid just last month. When asked if he should have recused himself, Thrasher said, "Hell, no. I think that's a total political bunch of crap from the Democratic Party of Florida. They're used to losing, obviously." And what's half a million bucks between friends?

MT-Sen, MT-Gov, MT-AL: A firm called NSON Opinion Strategy took a poll of all three Montana races for the a conservative radio host, Aaron Flint of the Northern News Network, and a conservative consulting firm, 47 North Communications. Note that despite our very early point in the cycle, they tested likely voters. Anyhow, they found Rep. Denny Rehberg (R) narrowly leading Sen. Jon Tester, 47-44, in the senate race. In the open house race, they have Republican Steve Daines on top of Dem Frankie Wilmer, 31-22 (and obviously a ton of undecideds). Incidentally, Rehberg just endorsed Daines, the only announced Republican candidate so far.

NSON also checked on the gubernatorial primaries for both parties, but there's no suggestion of an oversample, and I'm not in the habit of reporting polls where the n is in the vicinity of 200, so you'll have to click through if you want the numbers.

NV-Sen: I, like you, had been wondering why in the hell Harry Reid would randomly start talking about outlawing prostitution in Nevada. But when I saw that John Ensign felt compelled to weigh in in response - he's fer it! - I wondered if Reid might be playing a very clever deep game. Goading Ensign into running his mouth off about whoring is a pretty good trick, if you ask me.

WA-Gov: This seems like a pretty unlikely move, what with AG Rob McKenna ready to pounce (and even Rep. Dave Reichert supposedly weighing a run), but another Republican might get into the mix. Businessman and Seattle Port Commission President Bill Bryant won't even go so far as to say he's "considering" the race; rather, he's "listening" to people who have "urged" him to look at the race.

CA-23: A great catch by Aaron Blake: Republican former LG Abel Maldonado filed paperwork with the FEC to run in Dem Rep. Lois Capps' district. While it would be a hell of a feat for a Republican to win here - Obama won 65% of the vote here - the proverbial "source close to" Maldonado says the candidate is "pretty confident that redistricting will change that district enough" to make it competitive. We'll see.

CA-26: It looks like we're finally getting the upgrade we need to successfully challenge Rep. David Dreier, and we have term limits to thank. Democratic Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, who is termed out in 2012, will kick off his campaign next week. As per the above, it's pretty ballsy to start running when you can't even know where you'll be running, but unlike Maldonado, Portantino is getting off to a real start, complete with fundraiser.

CA-36: Has anyone of any stature endorsed Debra Bowen yet? I have no idea, because her website is still just a freakin' splash page. And I ask because two more members of Congress just endorsed Janice Hahn: Loretta Sanchez and Laura Richardson. Endorsements don't typically mean a lot, but in this case, Hahn has really piled together an impressive roster in a very short time, which indicates her level of influence is quite strong. Meanwhile, I'm not even sure what Bowen is up to - search for her name on Google News (be sure to sort by date) and you won't find much about her, but you'll see plenty of stories about Hahn.

FL-22: Hmm. So much for keeping his recruiting plans on the DL. Steve Israel's in South Florida this week, talking with potential candidates about taking on Lunatic-in-Chief Allen West next year. It sounds like Israel's met with ex-Rep. Ron Klein, whom West beat in November, as well as Palm Beach County Tax Collector Anne Gannon, and a guy named Patrick Murphy (no, not that Patrick Murphy), a construction executive. Israel also said he wants to talk to West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel, who is term-limited.

NY-26: You can try to dump your gnarly tins of leftover Scozzafava-brand cat fud into a landfill, but the stench will forever linger on. The Albany Project has this awesome catch: Republican nominee Jane Corwin made the terrible, terrible error of donating $1,000 to Dede Scozzafava during her most ill-fated of congressional runs. Oh, the agony!

OR-01: Two newspapers have already called for Rep. David Wu's resignation: The Daily Astorian and the Eugene Register Guard, which is actually the second-largest paper in the state. Can the Oregonian be far behind? So far, though, while the chair of the Oregon GOP seems to be calling for Wu to step down, fellow Dem politicians have been very circumspect, and Wu himself said he has no interest in leaving.

TX-15: This might help explain why Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (D) has missed so many votes (40% so far): Earlier this month, he declared bankruptcy, on account of loan guarantees he made to his family's meat company. The company itself declared bankruptcy in 2008, and though he was paid as a consultant from 2002 to 2007, Hinojosa has said he does not have managerial control over the firm.

UT-02: Jim Matheson is on a bit of a sticky wicket. If the GOP cracks Democratic Salt Lake City when they draw their new maps, he could potentially survive - after all, he's represented a brutal district for a decade now. But he could be given a super-red district which also includes a lot of new territory, setting him back to square one-and-a-half. Alternately, the Republicans could pack Dem voters into a single district that would actually be fairly blue - in which case the conservative Matheson might find himself vulnerable to a more liberal challenger, particularly thanks to Utah's convention nomination process. (Recall that Matheson only pulled 55% at last year's convention against Some Dude Claudia Wright.) One such challenger might be former SLC Mayor Rocky Anderson, who told Aaron Blake he wouldn't rule out such a run, if the district were suitable.

National Journal: It looks like the NJ's senate ratings are out (though I'm not sure the complete list is publicly available yet). And guess who is tied for most conservative senator? The circle is now complete. When John McCain left us, he was but the maverick. Now he is the hackster.

Tea Party Express: Open Secrets has an interesting analysis in which they show that no fewer than twenty different federal PACs sprang into being last cycle, but that fully 96% of all money raised was hauled in by just a single entity, the Tea Party Express. But even more fascinating to me are TPX's final numbers. They donated $37K directly to candidates and spent $2.7 million on independent expenditures, but raised an amazing $7.6. That means that almost five million dollars went... where exactly?

WI St. Assembly: Mark your calendars: Widely-beloved Gov. Scott Walker has set May 3rd as the date for special elections for three now-vacant Republican-held Assembly seats. (All three dudes just took jobs in the Walker administration.) The open seats are the 60th, 83rd and 94th. That last one could be interesting. Obama won only 38% & 35% of the vote in the first two districts respectively, but he took 55% in the 94th. The GOP has a 57-38 edge in the Assembly, though, so we have a long way to claw back.

DavidNYC :: SSP Daily Digest: 2/25
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I wonder what happened to the Reid Ensign NAP
what is he gaining by pushing him into a corner like that?  I imagine the Democrat that ends up running has a much better shot against Ensign than the other candidates that are lined up (minus Sharon Angle if she tries for another run).  

Agree
Dumb move if that was the intent.

[ Parent ]
Again, it was NOT.
As I said before, I didn't see any evidence of Reid trying to play a game with Ensign on this. He just doesn't like the brothels. Period.

I wish Harry hadn't wasted time on it, but what's really irritating me now is how the DC pundits are trying to read all sorts of BS into it that's just not there. Don't they have better ways to spend their time?

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
Harry
Harry just needs to go get laid. :)

43 - Male - GOP/Libertarian - FL 22

[ Parent ]
He does. He has Landra...
And especially since her horrific accident last year, their relationship seems to have been strengthened even more. And considering all the politicians here [cough, John Ensign, cough, Jim Gibbons, cough] who just can't keep it in their pants and fool around all over the place, it's amazing Harry has managed to stay with Landra for nearly 50 years.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
Prostitution in Nevada
is actually something I'm writing a paper on this semester. As I understand it, the general public is slightly opposed but apathetic about it. Is that true, and is there anything else (in terms of the whole issue) that you can say, or resources you would recommend for further information about it?

überliberal Democrat, male, OH-12 (college), NJ-09 ("home"), Mets, Jets

[ Parent ]
Here you go...
One of the organizations out to ban all prostitution

Nevada "Sexploration" Clearinghouse (NSFW)

And there's more over at Google Scholar.

And check if your college's library can access UNLV and UNR electronic archives. At both schools, there have been studies of Nevada's brothel system.  

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
In the interest of
hooking your audience, or simply putting in something amusing, figure out a way to work this in: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

"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 ]
Corwin
Interesting to see what impact the Corwin thing will have, though the State Conservative Party Chair sounded unswayed, simply saying he'd preferred it she'd not done it, without seeming that bothered.

Corwin also had an A- rating from the NRA, according to Vote Smart. While that's pretty high and Corwin's pro-gun by any sane standard, I'd be interested to know what votes she took to make it an A- instead of an A or A+, and I'd imagine tea partiers might want to know too. Her "pro-choice" stance is extremely limited, after all, but has still rankled them.


Not an issue.
The Conservative Party of NY is with Corwin.

Without them there is really no way for a Tea Party candidate to get on the ballot.

Getting 3,500 valid signatures to get on the ballot for a special election in NYS is really hard. It's very easy to have ballots disqualified.

I think if anyone runs as a 3rd party candidate it will be Jack Davis (who ran as a Dem in 2008 & 2010). He's got the money needed to petition and may even get the Indy Party line.

If that's the case chances are he draws more from the Dems than the GOP.

Fight global warming & help disaster relief efforts by raising money for Music for Relief when you search the web! Click here for more info:
http://searchmfr.swagbucks.com...


[ Parent ]
Yeah
Everyone who keeps flatly insisting that there's "no issue" with Conservative support for Corwin still faces a problem (as of right now): Mike Long hasn't endorsed her. Now, maybe he's just playing a game and getting assurances, but if he wanted to put this one to rest, he could have endorsed her the moment she got the GOP nomination. He didn't. So that still says something to me.

[ Parent ]
NY-26 Politico has picked up The Albany Project's story
 and are trying to buck up Corwin by listing all the GOP bigwigs who naturally enough also gave money to Scozzafava for that special election. http://www.politico.com/news/s...
Still, Long and the Conservative Party are holding back for now for some reason. She only has a "leg up" on that endorsement.

[ Parent ]
Yes, quite curious.
For a while, it looks like she had the endorsement.  Now, all of the sudden, it's in a precarious position.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
Also
Chris Cox donated $4600 and then got it refunded on 9/23 according to the FEC sheet that was linked.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
Portantino is almost certain to end up in Schiff's district
Portantino is from La Cañada Flintridge, which leans Republican and was given to Dreier for security. It's close to Pasadena, so the logical solution is it for it to go to Schiff. Assemblywoman Norma Torres will probably be Dreier's opponent.

Even with redistricting, Maldonando is going to have a climb at that district. If the seat becomes mainly SLO and Santa Barbara Counties, it still leans Dem, even Kerry won it 50% to 49%. Plus, Capps is a rather strong incumbent.

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


Does it matter?
Given that the districts will be completely new and that the area is very populous would it be a huge issue? In theory he could just rent an apartment somewhere to establish residency? I realize that much of his base may be out of district but do you think voters would be paying that much attention and is it a worthy attack of Dreir? I can understand if he were to move from that area to say San Diego or Sacramento but it doesn't seem like such a huge issue to me.  

28, Male, Democrat VA-08  

[ Parent ]
It's more an issue of electorate
I don't see it as much of an attack, I was thinking more about the primary. I think it would be likelier that Torres would end up being Dreier's opponent if Pomona is included in the redrawn lines. Either one could beat Dreier, so it's not a big deal.

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

[ Parent ]
Thanks
I am cautiously optimistic that a few odious CA Reps can be eliminated such as Dreier, Gallegy and Lungren. Having a complete gerrymander would have been fantastic as they could have targeted who to eliminate. What I would have given to have a district that specifically went after Issa and/or Hunter Jr. Issa is a monumental prick and Hunter Jr. just doesn't get the face time to prove how much of a prick he is.

Thanks for the information about that, it should be very interesting to see how it works out. I hope that Steve Israel and the DCCC have their butts in line and are ready to recruit some top-tier challengers especially for Republicans running in new territory that Obama is expected to carry or significantly be competitive in.  

28, Male, Democrat VA-08  


[ Parent ]
You don't have to "establish residency," remember, that's not required
You have to be a legal resident of the state to run for U.S. House that state, you don't have to reside in the district.

Ergo, Tom McClintock.

And House district lines being what they are, voters don't pay attention to them or care about them.  It's no issue to run outside your district of residence.  The only issue is, say, if you're from a place with a radically different political culture than the district in which you're running.  But being redistricted out of your residence is no big deal for these particular CA candidates.

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


[ Parent ]
To state the obvious
There are only three viable options for Portantino:

1) Run against McKeon in a Republican leaning or 'toss-up' district.

2) Run against an entrenched incumbent like Schiff.

3) Run against a (probably more local) Democrat for an essentially vacant seat in eastern LA.

What's not an option is running against Dreier in a seat much like his current one, since such a seat will not exist after redistricting. Assuming Dreier himself runs again, then it'll probably be in a Dem seat where the real action is the primary.  If there's anything resembling 'the Dreier district' on the new map then it won't be in LA County (though it could possibly be the equivalent of Royce's current seat crossing over from Orange County).

So, what it probably comes down to is that Portantino doesn't care what seat he ends up in, and plans to run regardless even if he has to move. If so, then he surely realizes that he needs a huge amount of money to have a serious chance, and that's why he's getting off to an early start.


[ Parent ]
McKeon
I'd give it 75/25 odds of it being McKeon rather than Schiff. If McKeon's district is fully contained in northern LA County, then this is a 'natural' place for it to dip in to pick up enough voters for a full district. The LA outskirts north of I-210 are heavily white, and so are likely to be excluded from what will presumably be majority-minority districts to the south.

[ Parent ]
UT-02
One dimension of this race that I don't think I've seen anyone mention is that unlike after the last round of redistricting, Matheson will be facing Presidential turnout levels. In 2002, there weren't any statewide offices on the ballot, so turnout was low, which may have aided his narrow (1,500 votes or so) victory. In 2012, turnout is going to be high in Utah, especially if Romney is the nominee.

As a comparison, in 2002, the turnout in UT-02 was around 224k votes, while in 2004 it was 342k.  


Hmm... just checked exit poll data for Utah
'08 Pres 21/50/29
'06 Sen  20/56/24

Relatively more Is and fewer Ds in a Pres Election year -- presumably better for Matheson.

But greater overall numbers, presumably worse for Matheson.

In any case, if Romney is the nominee, I'm not sure that a full on SLC district could save Scott.


[ Parent ]
Excellent point (eom)


[ Parent ]
Gingrich Says GOP Should Not be Wary of Shutdown
In other news Exxon Valdez Captain Joseph Hazelwood says drinking and boating is perfectly safeand Titanic Captain Edward J. Smith says icebergs aren't a threat to North Atlantic cruise ships.  

"Earnestness is stupidity sent to college"
P. J. O'Rourke


in and of itself who knows
Times are different compared to 1990's and the country seems more confused about how to solve problems than during the last shutdown.  I have no idea how it would play out, but I'm not so sure it will backfire on the GOP either.  I think Gingrich realizes his own presence helped cause a lot of the ill will toward the GOP in addition to the shutdown itself.

[ Parent ]
No, the country is not more confused......
I was here for the last shutdown, everything was the same except the GOP had the Senate, too, which mattered and made it harder for us than this time.

The public was equally confused then as now.

Obama and Senate Dems are playing the politics well on this so far, even though the spending cuts are bad for the economic recovery and will be hard to swallow when a deal is cut.  But our side looks compromising, and teabaggers are not, so Boehner is caught between a rock and a hardplace.

Republicans if anything are in a much worse position now than in '95.  And the increasingly nonwhite electorate makes things even harder for them to find a way not to just kill themselves.

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


[ Parent ]
Imagine how easy it will be for
Obama to grab the mantle of responsibility by doing a live presidential address describing how unreasonable the Republicans are being and how it can affect public schools and local governments and so on. Even if it's slightly unearned because he mentions some partisan talking points, he'll come across as the grown up in this situation. And if the Democrats keep a united front and look like calm, rational people compared to the likely insane, irrational Teabaggers in Congress, it'll probably be very bad for them.  

"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 irrelevant...
The Senate and Obama are caving at lightspeed...  very sad...

[ Parent ]
They are not.
What the heck are you talking about?  They clearly said that the House bill and the short-term CR they offered are nonstarters several times.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
In Utah
the best outcome would actually be the GOP packing SLC for a Dem-leaning district and pretty much assuring 3-1, with Matheson probably primaried out and a better Democrat in his place.

The worst case scenario is of course them managing to crack SLC four ways and somehow Matheson can't win any of the four districts.


You forgot the best part of your best case scenario
If there is a sole SLC district, Matheson may just not run for re-election in the house,, fearing he would lose the primary, but may run for senate.  He obviously has some appeal with republican voters, and uifhatch gets teabagged, it's an open seat.  I know the GOP is dumb, but I dont think they are that dumb.

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

[ Parent ]
You know, the Utah GOP...
Really should consider this. Do they really want to risk drawing Jim Matheson out of The House, allowing him to essentially become a "free agent" and considering running for US Senate should Orrin Hatch become another teabagger casualty? Or do they want Matheson running for US Senate if he gets scared out of the House Dem primary by Rocky Anderson in a new Salt Lake-Summit dominated district? They may want to be extra careful in redrawing these districts.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
If I were the UT GOP
I'd take my chances on a Matheson statewide run. I wouldn't be too worried in a presidential year - or even a non-presidential year.

[ Parent ]
But Matheson already has experience...
Winning in an uber-red district, and he wouldn't be another "sacrificial lamb" akin to past Dem statewide candidates. Mike Lee lucked out last year when the national climate was so pro-GOP and Dems weren't preparing to bring on a top tier candidate as Bennett was getting teabagged, but whomever knocks out Hatch at next year's convention may not have it as easily next time.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
Oh, yeah, they will have as easy of time
There is absolutely no way a Dem wins the Senate from Utah in a presidential year. Matheson has the most "liberal" district in Utah right now. He'd get killed in statewide race, against anyone.

I agree with DavidNYC - I don't think Matheson running for the Senate would be that scary to UT Republicans.  


[ Parent ]
Very good point
I think if the Utah Republican Party really wants to, it can put Rep. Matheson in a jam. But here's the problem: unless Romney is at the top of the ballot, President Obama is probably set to improve his 2008 numbers, and Matheson is likely to hang on. Meanwhile, the GOP will have at least one open House seat (UT-04, plus UT-03 if Rep. Chaffetz pulls the trigger on a primary bid against Sen. Hatch) to worry about, and if they crack Salt Lake City, they're making their districts (which are, to be fair, already insanely Republican) several points less Republican. That could end up being a problem if Democrats rustle up a candidate with rural and/or suburban appeal, or if the vote in Mormon strongholds is depressed by lack of enthusiasm over the Republican nominee for president (I imagine religiously conservative Utahns are about as excited by the prospect of Gov. Barbour or Newt Gingrich at the top of the ticket as they are about that $200 champagne being served at their Election Night parties), if only because they'll become enough of a liability to demand that money be spent there.

If you were to combine that with a Matheson run statewide, or (a nightmare scenario that has to rattle Republicans to consider) Ambassador Huntsman launching some sort of independent bid for Senate, and you're looking at easily the most competitive elections the Utah Republican Party has faced in literally generations.

That's why people are still talking about 1-3.

20, center-left independent, Auckland Central resident, MD-05 voter, OR-01 native


[ Parent ]
I'd put Romney's chances for the R nomination pretty high
somewhere between 1:4 and 2:5.

If Romney does become the R nominee, I don't think Matheson could even hold a district centered on SLC.

OTOH, If Romney does not get the R nomination, I predict that turnout in Utah -- and among Mormons throughout the west, will be down. Under those circumstances, Matheson might even survive an R+20 district.

Alternatively, it might be the best circumstance for a Matheson run for the Senate.


[ Parent ]
I tend to agree with you on all points
Romney is probably the frontrunner for the nomination simply because of the outsize influence of little New Hampshire and Nevada, but I question the political wisdom of his apparent decision to double down on "Romneycare".

The debates should be interesting. I suspect Gingrich will make significant gains there, while Romney will cede quite a bit of ground. Every Republican who shows up, from Rep. Paul to Gov. Barbour to Rick Santorum, will be taking a folding chair to Romney over every apostasy against the small-government-except-for-abortion party platform, and he'll have to make a tough sell in front of crowds I expect to be unsympathetic to his record as governor. Meanwhile, if Ambassador Huntsman makes the race, he'll be working at every turn to distinguish himself from Romney, and he'll probably be chipping away at him from the left; Romney might actually hope Huntsman runs just so he has a prop to make himself appear more conservative, and even if Huntsman stays out, he may be able to push off from Gary Johnson and/or Ron Paul. The problem is that no one credible gives Huntsman, Johnson, or Paul a real shot of winning the nomination.

Actually, I'll shoot myself in the foot here. I definitely don't expect Paul to win the nomination, but quite frankly, I think his chances are underrated at the moment. I'm a bit thrown by his apparent disinclination to defer to the younger, more telegenic Johnson, as a lot of us expected he would, but right now Johnson is getting a lot more attention as a pro-drug legalization activist than he is as a libertarian constitutional conservative or whatever it is Paul calls himself these days.

20, center-left independent, Auckland Central resident, MD-05 voter, OR-01 native


[ Parent ]
Just how much higher
can the Republican totals in the state go if Romney's the nominee?  

"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 ]
Well, W got 71%
and he wasn't Mormon, and wasn't from Utah.

The D total went up about 15% in HI with Obama, to the low 70s.

I'd expect Romney to approach 80%.

OTOH, if Romney is not the nominee, I'd expect disappointment in Utah -- even bitterness at the southern religious nuts for anti-Mormon attitudes. In that case, I'd expect President Obama to approach 40%, possibly sufficient for Matheson to beat a tea party nominee for the Senate.


[ Parent ]
I don't.
One of Romney's biggest problems is that his best asset in Utah and Nevada, his LDS affiliation, is a deep liability in most of the rest of the country, especially when it comes to GOP primary voters. I remember the seething hatred for Mormons among the Christian fundamentalists that are part of the GOP base in California, and I suspect the same holds in The Deep South. Fundies hate Mormons just as much as they hate LGBT folk and feminists. (They think we're all on our way to burning in hell.)

Romney's other huge problem is his record as Massachusetts Governor. "Romneycare" will continue to haunt him, especially since it was an inspiration for "Obamacare", and teabaggers won't forget this going into the next Presidential Primary.

So with both the fundamentalist crowd and the teabaggers likely set to oppose Romney, I think he'll fall short (again) in the GOP primary.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
How much can he really improve in Utah?
He obviously improved from Kerry's totals, which were pretty much rock bottom, but can he give enough of a bump to Democrats to really help them out? Granted, these guys would certainly need to be competitive in their own right, but still...

"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 ]
Not much.
In 2008, Obama was the first Democrat to win Salt Lake County since '64.  If Romney isn't the nominee, he could make that again.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
I don't think Matheson has much of a shot.
but that being said we need to take all the chances we can with the senate map the way it is. Plus its not like his vote in the house has been terribly crucial generally he just votes with the repubs for cover when the dems are in power or with them when there not simply cause the house can't stop them.  

CO-02 (college)/FL-15 (home).  

[ Parent ]
The question is,
at what point does a conservative become too conservative for Utah Republicans? They usually make up half of the electorate, so Matheson would likely need to get something like 20 or 25 percent of them, in addition to dominating the Independent vote, to really have a shot. (I figure if he ran, he'd get about 95 percent of the Democratic vote, if not more.) Could Matheson flip that many voters? I'm not sure, but if any Democrat could, I guess it would be him.

The other possibility, of course, is to bring more possible Democratic voters to the polls. The state has poor turnout and lots of unregistered voters, so perhaps it's possible to make up a lot of the deficit that way.  

"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 ]
Utah is like the Deep South
How well a democrat does is pretty proportional to how much of the electorate is LDS. About 80% of LDS voters vote Republican, and about 80% of non-LDS vote Democratic. LDS voters make up about 67% of the population, and if you look at recent Democratic performances, they tend to trend around that 30-34% range, and GOP performances tend to range in 67% area. If a Republican nominee is bad, like Mike Lee was, you will get 5-7% going to third parties, but the Democratic numbers will not budge.

The Democratic improvement in Salt Lake County has zero to do with any sort of trends in voter identification and everything to do with the fact that in about 2005 Mormons became a minority in the county as they previously had in the city. Democratic performance will continue to improve as the number of non-LDS voters improve, but like in Alabama, there is minimal effort that there are anywhere near enough swing voters to get to 50%.

That said, another factor is that Democrats no longer run Mormon candidates. Because Democrats are party of non-LDS voters, and those voters both resent the Mormon church and make up an overwhelming percentage of Democratic primary voters, elections tend to turn into religous wars. Someone like Rocky Anderson will never get over 34% statewide because his entire political career is based upon being anti-Mormon. Ditto for 90% of Democratic legislators.

This is a recent development. As late as 1996 it was still possible for Jan Graham to win election to the AG's office. But Scott Matheson, Jim's brother, currently holds the record for best Democratic performance in 14 years with his 41%, and his brother may be able to match it. But the Democrats in Utah are stuck in a bit of the same whole that they are in in Texas where the political views of the average Democratic primary voter are completely foreign to the vast majority of the state electorate.  

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


[ Parent ]
Sen. Reid is Mormon
If Democrats could find a left-of-center (by Utah standards) credible Mormon candidate to run in an open seat, that could give the Republicans a bit of heartburn. The Republican is always going to be favored, but then again, I really did think Rep. Matheson might be on his way out last year.

20, center-left independent, Auckland Central resident, MD-05 voter, OR-01 native

[ Parent ]
But Harry Reid is here in Nevada...
And unlike Utah Democrats, Nevada Democrats typically don't engage in religious feuds. For some strange reason, big Mormon families like Harry's and outrageous gay atheists like moiself happily coexist in the NSDP.

OTOH since Utah Democrats mostly seem to be used to losing almost everywhere outside Salt Lake and Summit Counties, there's a strong progressive base that never seems to wilt at the thought of hard fought primary warfare. That's why Jim Matheson came close to falling under 50% in the UDP Convention last year. Matheson's first challenge next year, whether it's running for House again or running for Senate, will be to overcome the seething hatred of his Blue Dog ways among progressives.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
I thought Matheson was mormon to
not saying that will budge the numbers much but it can't hurt.  

CO-02 (college)/FL-15 (home).  

[ Parent ]
He is...
And I think he's one of the very few elected Mormon Democrats left in Utah.

As someone said earlier, the culture of the Utah Democratic Party is very different from the culture of ours. Honestly, their party is more reminiscent of California's in regards to the dominance of progressive activists in both. Jim Matheson just doesn't have a machine in Utah like Harry Reid has here, and the Dem base there treats him like the California Dem base treats Dianne Feinstein. But hey, DiFi has managed to win elections for some time, so all hope certainly isn't lost for Matheson.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
If there were a situation
where he looks like he'd have a legitimate shot at winning statewide, do you think they'd get over their issues and work for him?  

"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 don't know...
Perhaps he can run up the margin enough among rural Dems to pad himself against whatever hell the Salt Lake/Summit Dems may want to put him through?

Last October, Former SLC Mayor Rocky Anderson hinted that he would rather see Morgan Philpot win than deal any more with Jim Matheson's ConservaDem ways. If Chris Giunchigliani had said something like that about Sharron Angle and Harry Reid last October (which she would NEVER, b/c she & her husband are close to the Reids), I guarantee you she wouldn't be running for Las Vegas Mayor today. But there, Anderson is seen as a "progressive hero" and someone who could potentially primary Matheson should UT-02 be redrawn as just a Salt Lake/Summit district (and he decides to stay put there).

I'm sure if Matheson could survive a primary challenge in UT-02 last year, he can find a way to get the UT-Sen nomination should he seek it. I'm just saying it won't be easy.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
Hmm,
then was not p.j. orourke making stuff up when he said that he had heard several Utah Republicans worried about Matheson crushing Chaffetz?  

"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'd agree if he ran for his house seat again.
I think a senate race between someone insane and him would lead the activists to their senses but I see where your coming from and you could very well be right.  

CO-02 (college)/FL-15 (home).  

[ Parent ]
And there isn't any sort of
untapped potential? I wouldn't be shocked if voters that aren't showing up or aren't registered are just as friendly to Republicans as most of the state is, but at the same time, the most Republican areas of the state are usually where the smallest number of people live. There's obviously a big difference between Salk Lake City and Provo, but perhaps the Democrats could focus solely on the Wasatch Front and have a chance.  

"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 ]
Totally forgot about that
It's looking more and more likely that Hatch doesn't make it out of convention.

[ Parent ]
Dick Morris polls WI, finds majority opposed to ending collective bargaining.
http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo...

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


If you read Morris' analysis...
...it basically was, "Dude, your losing... change the subject and say it's about schools, or something..."

[ Parent ]
It was surprisingly astute for Morris.
And I think he's correct.  The only problem is that it's kinda too late.  Apparently, Walker wasn't too bright when he presented this proposal.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
He thought he would be like Christie...
...and everyone would love him for sticking it to the unions.

Problem is, he forgot he was in Wisconsin, not Jersey.


[ Parent ]
NJ is also
pretty big on labor.  The thing with Christie is he is mostly bluster on his talk against unions.  If he tried to remove collective bargaining or make NJ right-to-work, there would be backlash.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
I think anyone whose seen
Walker's schedule over the past couple of weeks could see that he's losing. He's holding pretty much daily press conferences, he had that "fireside chat" and he recently held a couple of events in Dem. State Senate districts trying to put pressure on them. This, atleast to me, seems like the schedule of a man that is trying to change minds.

Also, while this doesn't have anything to do with the issue per se its IMO a funny story anyway. Apparently yesterday Scott Walker went to a Madison-area restaurant and was asked to leave.


[ Parent ]
And after that prank call revealed his devious plans
any chance to get at least one Dem state Senator over to "negotiate" with him was now out of the question because he said in the phone call he'd use that opportunity to declare a quorum and hurry a vote in the State Senate. Now, the only thing that can get them back is for him to agree to meet them halfway and drop the removal of the collective bargaining agreements.  Walker's one devious little weasel...and he looks like that Governor from "Blazing Saddles."

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
Also, I think we can establish
that he isn't good at "selling" his shock doctrine.  When he introduced it, he floated using the National Guard as strike-breakers and/or scabs if workers protested.  His salesmanship was an epic fail right off the bat.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
He's definitely
Overplayed his hand. He must have thought he got elected with 62% instead of 52. But because of the composition of the legislature he went about doing things that were far beyond the mandate he received. As a slight aside, one of the more recent Walker talking points is that he campaigned on this. That is complete nonsense, and politifact exposed it as such.

There's one potential compromise. One of the more moderate GOP State Senators suggested suspending collective bargaining for 2 years. The Dem Senators and unions seem to be okay with this. Walker has said no to this, but if 2 other Senators sign on to this proposal, I think Walker is going to be very hard pressed to turn it down.


[ Parent ]
The Dems were cold to that proposition.
What they were willing to concede is having to pay more for their benefits and healthcare, so long as collective bargaining was intact.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
We must be hearing
Different things because from what I've read the Dem State Senators and union members were receptive to that compromise offer.

[ Parent ]
Where did you hear
that he was asked to leave? That's just awesome.  

"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 ]
Here:
http://mymindstain.blogspot.co...

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
NV-Redistricting: Can State Leg. Democrats
Shore up their tenuous State Senate majority through redistricting?  From the data, 1 Assembly seat will have to be moved into Clark County from the Rurals (and possibly a second from Washoe, although this is 50/50) and 1 State Senate seat will have to be moved into Clark County.

http://www.lasvegassun.com/new...

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


Oh, yes they can...
In fact, my own district is on top of the list to redo. It's an extra large "dual district" that actually elects two State Senators, and it seems this time The Legislature doesn't want to repeat that gimmick. And since I'm now represented by one Democrat and one Republican, it shouldn't be difficult to give the Dem (Shirley Breeden) the more Dem-friendly parts of SD 5 (Green Valley/Silverado Ranch) while giving the GOPer (Michael Roberson) the redder areas.

And with Clark County likely to gain at least one full district from the rurals, Dems may even be able to gain a district. GOPers may object, but I suspect there's a price they'll have to pay to save themselves and Joe Heck.

Yes, Virginia, there ARE progressives in Nevada!
24, gay male, Democrat, NV-03 (or 04?)


[ Parent ]
Interesting MD Development
The State Senate approved a same-sex marriage bill yesterday, 25-21, which is amazing considering how far from people's minds that was last year. They probably would have been a good half dozen votes short last session - Republicans, Democrats from conservative or suburban non-metro districts, and anti-gay black Democrats from Baltimore or PG had always added up to a majority.

Two interesting things happened in last fall's elections - an upset win in the Democratic primary by Bill Ferguson over Sen. George Della (D-Baltimore) and a somewhat surprising defeat of anti-gay Sen. Alex Mooney (R-Frederick) in November. Hard to say how Della would have voted, but Ferguson was an enthusiastic SSM supporter. Ron Young, who beat Mooney, also voted yes.

A surprising number of wavering Democrats from at least theoretically competitive suburban Baltimore seats signed on. In a year like 2010, with Bob Ehrlich atop the ticket, I'd have expected tougher campaigns by Republicans against Brochin, Klausemeier, and Kasemeyer, and maybe Zirkin, but none of them had much trouble getting re-elected. And one Republican, Allan Kittleman of Howard County, the former GOP floor leader, joined in. His unwillingness to sign a declaration of opposition along with all his colleagues cost him his leadership job.  

While all of the African-American Senators from Prince George's County voted no as a bloc (the three Senators from northern PG, two whites and one Latino, voted yes) all of Baltimore City's delegation - all African-Americans except for the aforementioned Ferguson - all voted yes.

The bill now moves to the House. The House has been the more liberal of the two bodies in Annapolis generally, but that may not be true anymore; the GOP actually lost ground (Mooney, plus an open seat on the Eastern Shore) in the Senate last fall, they gained a chunk of seats in the House - although none from areas especially likely to produce many votes for same-sex marriage.  


36, M, Democrat, MD-03


Senate President opposed it. :(


Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
The Vote Happened
I'm sad Miller didn't vote for it, but he let the vote happen, which is far from a sure thing in this and other legislators when issues like this come up and the head honcho isn't on board for whatever reason.  

36, M, Democrat, MD-03

[ Parent ]
From what they're saying
they still expect easy passage in the House.  All the drama seemed to surround the Senate vote.

[ Parent ]
Good
I'd also like to take a moment to dance on Alex Mooney's political grave. The man is truly a piece of work.

20, center-left independent, Auckland Central resident, MD-05 voter, OR-01 native

[ Parent ]
College Classmate
I didn't really know him per se. He was a senior and I was a frosh. He ran for the NH House in 1992, as Dartmouth students sometimes do, and the people of Hanover, NH (students and otherwise) had the good sense not to elect him.

It seems like a student tries this every cycle. They're always Republicans, always movement conservatives, and almost always from out of state. And they always lose. Of course there are seemingly always Democratic incumbents and Hanover is the most liberal town in the state. It'd be interesting to see what would happen if there was an open seat and a student, preferrably with some sort of ties to the Upper Valley, tried running as a Dem. They would still have a tough time, but if they could get all the locally registered students to vote in a primary....

36, M, Democrat, MD-03


[ Parent ]
DSCC Attacking Brown on Sexual Abbuse
http://www.politico.com/blogs/...
This seems like a winning strategy...

Interesting questions, linked from the article
[ Parent ]
Throwing The Kitchen Sink
...there's a lot of self-service in what he says, but it ultimately doesn't matter. This probably isn't what the DSCC should be focusing on. Fortunately, it's so early in the cycle that few will care or remember.

In an election like this one where the general lean of things is on your side, you play that up and forget the rest of the stuff unless it's really damning.  

36, M, Democrat, MD-03


[ Parent ]
This is a dumb move by the DSCC, but the key is what you said, that...
..."it's so early in the cycle that few will care or remember."

That, and voters pay no attention to party committees except for their TV ads in an election year.

Still, this is tone deaf.  I understand the scorched-earth approach and am not averse to it, but you still have to attack things that plausibly could be explained in a critical light, "plausibly" being the key word.

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


[ Parent ]
Yeah
I couldn't picture Brown bringing that up down the stretch. It would seem desparate. And no one cares about the national campaign committees.  

36, M, Democrat, MD-03

[ Parent ]
While I agree bringing this up now was a political move...
This still comes off as incredibly dickish and tone-deaf of the DSCC.

20, center-left independent, Auckland Central resident, MD-05 voter, OR-01 native

[ Parent ]
Is it possible Politico is wrong?
I'm not trying to be funny here. Is it possible that Politico has it wrong and that the DSCC is not the group that's doing this? As far as I can tell, it's the only source making such a claim.


"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 ]
Yeah, that is suspicious.
Not even "The Hill" picked it up.  They would usually pounce on stuff like this.

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
WA-Gov
who are these people urging Bill Bryant to run? He has next to zero name recognition, and if he were to actually run it would just throw a spotlight on the often murky doings of the Port Commission.  Other than perhaps being able to self-fund, I see no rational reason for him to run for statewide office.

Probably the same Republicans trying to talk McKenna into the senate race
Washington Republicans do not have a deep bench. McKenna is about the only Republican with a gift for raising money who has won statewide. I would expect that Doug Sutherland and Joel Pritchard are among his backers. Neither are particularly fond of McKenna.

[ Parent ]
Maybe
Trying to increase his name rec for a run for another office, like Lt.Gov or SoS if Reed retires.

[ Parent ]
Dale Shultz (R) Wis senate to vote no
1 Republican state Senator down 2 more to go.

Oh and to make this SSP legal I think he may have been worried about re-election, his district went 61% for Obama.

downwithtyranny Howie Klein
Obama won the district with 61%, Kerry with 51%. RT @GinaSpitz: Sen. Dale Schultz (R) will vote NO! #wiunion


"Where free Unions and collective bargaining is forbidden, freedom is lost." - Ronald Reagan

Good man.


Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
Link please
I'd like this to be confirmed.  

Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo!
So little time, so much to know!


[ Parent ]
Schultz is the one
Who offered the compromise that I mentioned earlier that would suspend collective bargaining for 2 years. This isn't too much of a surprise, if you've read Schultz's comments you could see that he was much more sympathetic to this cause than Walker or any of the other senate republicans.

[ Parent ]

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