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SSP Daily Digest: 4/22 (Afternoon Edition)

by: DavidNYC

Fri Apr 22, 2011 at 2:09 PM EDT


House:

CA-26: More eliminationist rhetoric from the right (not that they'll ever cease): Anthony Portantino, the Democratic Assemblyman running against Rep. David Dreier, is featured on some second amendment-related Old West-style "WANTED" poster.

LA-02: Daily Kingfish says that Public Service Commissioner Lambert Boissiere III (son of a former state senator of the same name) is rumored to be interested in a primary challenge to Rep. Cedric Richmond in the newly-redrawn 2nd CD. The post points out that Bossiere's PSC district has a lot of overlap with the new borders of the 2nd, including a dog-leg up to the Baton Rouge area. (Bossiere, like Richmond, is also African-American.)

NH-02: It's nothing like the town hall craziness of 2009, but it's nice to see idiots like Charlie Bass take heat in public forums for voting for Paul Ryan's Medicare-killing budget. Pretty pathetic political instincts on the Bassmaster's part. This vote will haunt him - and it's already haunting several other colleagues, like Bob Dold!, Lou Barletta, and Paul Ryan himself.

NM-01: Oh no. I really had hoped we were done with Marty Chavez, but the maddening former Albuquerque mayor is apparently considering a run to replace Martin Heinrich, and is even supposedly meeting with the DCCC. The good news, though, is that ex-LG (and 2010 gubernatorial nominee) Diane Denish is also thinking about entering the race. This could be a very crowded primary.

NV-02: You know Jon Ralston is enjoying this one. After a report came out in the Las Vegas Review-Journal (which Ralston not-so-affectionately refers to as a "newspaper," in scare quotes every time) that state GOP chair Mark Amodei was planning to seek the 2nd CD seat being vacated by Dean Heller, Ralston spoke with Amodei who says he didn't announce anything. In the LVRJ piece (which oddly quotes Amodei himself, so I don't know how they got the story wrong), Amodei also said that Republican state Sen. Greg Brower told him he also planned to join the race (and Ralston confirms via Twitter.)

Of course, who knows what's going to happen with this seat, given the unsettled legal questions about how a special election should be conducted if Gov. Brian Sandoval taps Heller for John Ensign's soon-to-be-vacant Senate seat.

TN-06: I wonder what's up with Diane Black. The GOP frosh gave her own campaign two-thirds of a million bucks in Q1 - not a loan, an outright donation. I'm guessing that she's trying to ward off a potential primary challenge, given that she won the open-seat Republican primary last year with just 31% of the vote (her two nearest competitors both got 30%, so there must have been much gnashing of teeth).

Other Races:

NJ-St. Sen.: An administrative law judge ruled that Olympian Carl Lewis, who is running as a Democrat, does indeed meet state residency requirements. However, it sounds like Republicans plan to appeal this ruling.

WI Recall: All sorts of recall news. First up, Dem state Rep. Fred Clark says he'll challenge Luther Olsen in the expected recall election, another strong get for Team Blue. Democrats also filed a huge 30,000 signatures against their fifth recall target, Alberta Darling. That leaves just three eligible Republicans left: Rob Cowles, Glenn Grothman, and Mary Lazich, the latter two of whom are in very red districts (so I wouldn't be surprised if they don't get hit with a recall).

Republicans also finally filed signatures against three Democrats: Dave Hansen, Jim Holperin, and Robert Wirch. Democrats, though, charged that the GOP's petition-gathering efforts were sloppy and flawed, and vowed to challenge the signatures.

Redistricting Roundup:

California: California's new independent redistricting commission is set to release a draft set of maps by June 10th, with final maps due on August 15th (after a period of public comment).

Colorado: Things don't seem to be going so swimmingly in Colorado's attempt to go back to the redistricting drawing board, with a special committee begging for more time to finish a new set of maps. The Republican co-chair says he thinks they can produce new plans in 10 days, but as Al Swearengen says, announcing your plans is a good way to hear god laugh.

Meanwhile, Gov. John Hickenlooper sounds like he has no intention of vetoing any map that the legislature sends him. Since Dems control one body and Republicans the other, this means they'll have to produce a compromise map - or no map at all, and kick it to the courts. I think Hick's hands-off approach (which is totally in-character for him) increases the likelihood of the latter, because it eliminates a key piece of Dem leverage which could be used to force an agreement.

Missouri: Utterly embarrassing: Barely more than a day after finally agreeing to a conference committee to resolve differences between Republicans in the state House and Senate, work has ground to a halt, and nothing more will happen until Tuesday. One state Rep. offered this hilariously nonsensical assessment: "I think we're close, but obviously we're far." Meanwhile, the House passed a new map this morning that supposedly tries to address some Senate concerns, but given that there is no actual agreement, I'm guessing this is just a negotiating tactic.

New Jersey: Teabaggers are suing to block implementation of NJ's new legislative map. It's not quite clear what the grounds are, but WNYC summarizes: "The suit alleges that the commission over-packed the southern half of the state and 'illegally split Newark and Jersey City from three districts each to two.'"

Louisiana: The state House submitted its own map to the DoJ for pre-clearance, which I believe makes it the first such plan to go before Justice this cycle. The hotly-contested congressional map, though, has yet to be sent in.

Victims: Dave Wasserman and Julia Edwards try their hand at the most likely redistricting victims this cycle, with separate lists for the 10 most endangered Democrats and Republicans.

DavidNYC :: SSP Daily Digest: 4/22 (Afternoon Edition)
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Diane Black
She's looking to work her way into leadership, and possibly angling for NRCC chair. That money is probably so that she'll have plenty to loan to other candidates this cycle.

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

NH-Pres: Obama down 8 to Romney, up 8, 22, 27 over Huck, Trump, Palin
I think Barbour
is going to get turned into the white Southern Republican candidate, and he may even end up forcing out Gingrich and uniting that voting block. I think he would lose about 56-43 nation-wide.  

[ Parent ]
Maybe, though I suspect Barbour could still flip IN/NC
Beyond that, though, I'd be surprised to see Barbour do much better than McCain numbers.

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

[ Parent ]
Barbour
I don't think Barbour could flip either. I think he'd do worse than McCain in those states as well as Georgia.  

21, Conservative Gay Democrat, NM-2 (Childhood) TX-10 (Home) TX-23 (School);   DKos: wwmiv.

[ Parent ]
if barbour wins iowa
i could certainly see newt bowing out ala gephardt 2004.

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

[ Parent ]
Newt
Has WAAAAAY to big an ego for that.

[ Parent ]
which is more damaging to an ego
bowing out gracefully, or losing the next 10+ primaries by progressively worse margins?

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

[ Parent ]
But his ego will make him think he can still win
I don't see him dropping out before South Carolina.

[ Parent ]
Obama Admin and Dem plan to paint Mitt as moderate...
Could really backfire if he gets the nomination anyways, as he'll get the teabagger vote if for no other reason than they'd love to stick it to Obama.  And labeling him a moderate and giving him credit for Obamacare means he could then get some crossover appeal.    

[ Parent ]
Precisely, plus his GOP opponents will also aim to paint him as a RINO
I suspect, if Romney can run a center-right campaign and survive the primaries, he could garner upwards of 43 to 45 percent of the moderate vote.  

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

[ Parent ]
Nope, voters don't think that way......
Voters don't interpret "Obama praising Romneycare" as "Romney is a moderate."  There's no reason to believe voters would think like that.

On the contrary, Obama has a health care issue problem, with HCR never catching on (and I was wrong, as were the White House and Bill Clinton for that matter, to think it would at this point; Claire McCaskill was right, it will be a decade before the reforms are embraced by the general public).  So he's making sure Romney has one, too.

Did Kerry look "moderate" in 2004 for having voted for the Iraq War in 2002?  No he didn't, and it didn't help him one bit.

When the voters have turned against something the President has done, they don't see the challenger as "moderate" for having done the same thing.

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


[ Parent ]
What plan of the Democrats are you referring to?
They aren't going to use Romney as a selling point in a re-election campaign for something they did themselves.

[ Parent ]
The one where Obama
Obama and Dems keep thanking Romney for paving the way for health care reform and pointing out how similar his and Romney's plans ended up being...

http://thehill.com/blogs/healt...

In my estimation, they are kinda trying to Chicken Lady him with GOP primary voters. It does indicate they probably fear him the most of potential GOP candidates. As they should. Seriously, the GOP field is so weak that I really can't see anyone else even come close to beating Obama--and I can see quite a few (Palin, Bachmann, Trump, probably Gingrich) who would be beaten like a drum.

Kansan by birth, Californian by choice, and Gay by the grace of God.


[ Parent ]
Marc Ambinder, who always has good WH sources, tweeted this week their biggest fear isn't Romney...
...it's Pawlenty.

But Romney is 2nd.

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


[ Parent ]
Yep
Oddly, I agree.  Pawlenty's biggest problem is that he's boring, but that might not be such a big handicap this cycle.  Pawlenty also seems to be doing well in the 'invisible primary' where you try to line up party people behind you.

43 - Male - GOP/Libertarian - FL 22

[ Parent ]
Pawlenty could be the ...
... not Obama, not a  crazy teabagger candidate. Although with as fast as he is moving to the right he is looking like just  another crazy teabagger to me.

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

[ Parent ]
The eventual Republican candidate...
will get the teabagger votes regardless to stick it to Obama.  The strongest GOP candidate for this reason will be the most moderate one that can win the primary.  Tim could be this candidate - his only worry is Huckabee running because Huck would eat up Pawlenty's votes in Iowa and SC.

What are Pawlenty's potential weaknesses other than he'd bland/boring?  


[ Parent ]
None
None, really, which is probably why the White House is so worried about him.  He had to work with Dems when he was Gov, so that kept him from going too far to the right and he doesn't seem to have any personal baggage.  Everyone has some weaknesses and I'm sure Obama's people will find some holes, but he's got no glaring, obvious ones like the rest of the GOP field.
I'm going to go out on a limb and predict the GOP ticket - Pawlenty/Rubio.

43 - Male - GOP/Libertarian - FL 22

[ Parent ]
Pawlenty's problem is that ordinary voters often don't think like campaign junkies......
All of us who follow politics obsessively from some personal distance from all these candidates can make perfectly rationale arguments, that might be 100% correct, why a particular candidate is the strongest.

But ordinary voters don't follow politics so obsessively and don't think the same way.

They easily could look at Tim Pawlenty the same way so many Democrats in 2008 looked at Chris Dodd or Joe Biden...that is, "Eh.  Next."

They could see him being dull and boring as a general election liability (even though I think they'd be mistaken) against the charismatic Obama.

They could fail to see other candidates' liabilities the way Democrats recognize them.  That is actually something a lot of them will do.  It's part of what Pawlenty must overcome, he needs voters to recognize the liabilities his competitors have.  I don't know how he can do that, or if he's just stuck hoping his competitors shoot themselves in the foot.

Pawlenty would be in great shape if, say, he were polling consistently in the top 4 by now.  But he's not, he's always behind at least a couple crazies, different ones in different polls, between Palin and Gingrich and Huckabee and, lately, Trump and even Bachmann.

By the way, if Trump runs, that's a disaster for the entire field.  He eats up so much oxygen in the media and at the water cooler among ordinary voters, it's a disaster particularly for establishmentarians trying to break through.

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


[ Parent ]
Exactly
Exactly, and good call on the Rubio VP prediction as well. That's my best guess. Pawlenty's still second on Intrade after Romney, on the assumption that he's best positioned to unite the party if Romney collapses.

Someone said that Pawlenty is the only one who can actually win the GOP nomination whom a narrative has to be constructed against. Huntsman would be tougher, and Obama allb ut admitted that he's terrified of him, but he chance of getting the GOP nomination. Similar story with Daniels. In analyses of the 2012 field, people seem to vary on whether to class him in the moderate/establishment group with Romney or in the evangelical/teabagger group, the reason for confusion being that he's the only GOP candidate who is arguably "both", while being part-establishment keeps his appeal with swing voters. He's not exciting, and I read somewhere that his strategy is to be "everybody's second choice", but the fact he has no clear negatives or narrative and cannot be easily placed in any "camp" is his big strenth, as long as he defines himself before the Obama campaign do it for him. And he's ran a slick operation so far, though the action movie ads are a little odd (probably meant to hit back against the "dull" image), and just hired Nick Ayers to be his campaign manager, despite the fact that Ayers has worked for Barbour the last few years.


[ Parent ]
Obama and Huntsman
When has Obama all but admitted he's terrified of Huntsman?  

"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 ]
The more I think about it, the more I think odds are Rubio wouldn't accept VP......
After thinking further about Rubio, it becomes apparent that one thing he has to consider is that he effectively hitches his fate to the top of the ticket.

What if the Presidential nominee runs a bad campaign and loses miserably?  That destroys the GOP Prez nominee's public image, will it rub off on Rubio?

One assumes that if the GOP nominates someone who is an obvious loser up front, Rubio will want nothing to do with them in the first place.

But even if a GOP Prez nominee goes into summer '12 with a seeming decent shot, there's a risk for Rubio that, even in victory, he's buried for 4 years and then crushed under his boss' unpopularity, or serves 8 years and then has a hard time extending GOP control of the Presidency another 4 since that's extremely hard to do anyway.

If Rubio has Presidential aspirations, and I would bet he does, it's not clear accepting no. 2 helps him.

And I'm further not so sure like Zornoph that it even will be offered.

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


[ Parent ]
I doubt someone like Pawlenty would offer it
Pawlenty's problem is that he's perceived as being really dull. That's not a horrible problem (compared to the problems most of the other GOP hopefuls have it's actually relatively minor) but it also means that he might have the problem McCain had picking Palin, and something Obama specifically avoided by not picking Clinton, the very real chance that the running-mate overshadows the nominee.

Pawlenty can't pick someone like Rubio simply because it emphasizes Pawlenty's bad qualities rather than his good ones, IMHO.

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 ]
Agree, that's a real problem for all of them......
Rubio probably overshadows any 2012 GOP nominee.  All of them have too many problems not to be overshadowed by him.

That just diminishes the top of the ticket, and you don't do that.

But aside from Rubio, I have to say, I am very happy Trump looks like he might actually run.  He will destroy the GOP from within like a flesh-eating bacteria.

Are we sure he's not our plant?

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


[ Parent ]
Trump running is great for the country.
Whether he runs as a Republican or an Independent, he makes it almost guaranteed that Obama wins a second term. And if he runs as an Independent, he's providing a mini-stimulus, which will create some badly needed jobs. Plus, he's likely to provide us with countless hours of great political theater.

Maybe he is a plant after all.  

"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 ]
The one danger with Trump
Is that if he runs, and the winner winds up being someone who's a fan of the theory that Obama was born in America, they wind up looking sane by comparison.

[ Parent ]
Oh, I doubt that.
The only way I imagine the Republican nominee will look sane is if it's Mitch Daniels or Mitt Romney circa 2002. I'm sure there will some outrageous proposal and deranged belief that provides a nice contrast with Obama.  

"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 I'm afraid of is that Trump will shift the Overton window on what's a "deranged belief."


[ Parent ]
I know.
What I am saying is that this will probably be a race to the bottom with regards to insanity on the Republican side.  

"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, but I think that with the exception of global warming
People like Romney and T-Paw will at least stick to crazy that has some basis in reality. So they'll do shit like Pawlenty calling for a reinstitution of DADT, but avoid calling Obama a Kenyan, Muslim, or Terroirst.

[ Parent ]
Maybe, but every time
I think these people can't get much worse, they do.  

"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've never really thought he'd accept it, either
It just doesn't make sense for him.

[ Parent ]
Very smart points.
Rubio has the time to wait. He is, after all, only 39 right now. He could run for president in 25 years and not be particularly old.


"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 ]
Yup, and it takes a cursory examination to see that most Presidents...
...were never VP.

Bush 41 was the only VP I can think of who acceeded to the Presidency by election immediately after his boss' 8 years were up.

Nixon actually lost before making his comeback, but that was a triple bankshot and no one wants to have to do that.

And of course Ford acceded upon Nixon's resignation, and LBJ and Truman acceeded upon their boss' death in office.

Gore, Quayle, Mondale, Ford, Humphrey, and Nixon all failed trying to run for President after serving no. 2.

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


[ Parent ]
Would Pawlenty win Minnesota?
Would he lock it down or would the Obama Administration still make a play for it?


[ Parent ]
T-Paw
I'm not at all convinced T-Paw would win his home state.  I would guess that he's put it in play more so than any other GOPer but I would say it would be a battleground state.  From a Dem perspective, I'd be more worried that his Midwestern profile might help the GOP in WI, OH and IA.

43 - Male - GOP/Libertarian - FL 22

[ Parent ]
Obama would be the favorite
Pawlenty left office rather unpopular. He did not reach 50% in either governor's race (No republican has got 50%+ in any statewide race since 1994) and in the last poll I saw (PPP) he was well behind Obama.

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

[ Parent ]
The PPP poll
http://publicpolicypolling.blo...

From December. Obama 51 Pawlenty 43

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


[ Parent ]
He would likely still lose it
PPP did polling showing him with a net unfavorable rating there and he was tied for first in the Republican primary with Palin, but that was a couple of months ago.

NC-06/NC-04

[ Parent ]
At worst, it'd be a toss-up
I do think Pawlenty is among the three or five strongest Republicans the GOP could nominate, but that doesn't mean I think Minnesota's really in play. If anything, I think Pawlenty would flip Iowa and Wisconsin first. Alas, primaries-wise, I suspect Pawlenty will prove a snooze during the debates and Romney will end up coalescing most of the rank-and-file.  

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

[ Parent ]
Pawlenty wouldn't lock down Minnesota
in any sense of the word. Were he the nominee and to win it at all, it'd be by a very small margin. Wasn't there at least one big poll that showed Obama beating him by a bigger margin than he beat McCain, even when he was at an as weak if not weaker point in his presidency? I am pretty sure that there was.  

"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 think he could close the deal
He can keep it a toss-up throughout the campaign, but when it comes down to it, he'll lose by 3-4%.  Assuming Obama isn't going down big, that is.

[ Parent ]
Three or four percent?
Why would he get that close?  

"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 ]
Strategically speaking...
Why would the Obama Admin be playing a little operation chaos with Romney if they feel Pawlenty is stronger? Why not leave Mitt alone to win?  


[ Parent ]
Pawlenty is in low/mid single digits, they don't want to raise his profile......
They're playing it smart with Pawlenty.  The guy is working his ass off, frankly IMO doing everything right mechanically and strategically, but getting nowhere.  His hope is that he replays the tortoise in the hare-vs.-tortoise story, going slow but popping late in Iowa.  He certainly has plenty of time.  But as I explained above, it's possible he'll never pop with voters, that they'll ultimately fail to see what campaign junkies see, not just about him but about his competition, and just shrug him off.

But if Obama talks him up, that just makes Republican voters take notice, and helps Pawlenty.

In contrast, Romney already has a big profile, ordinary GOP voters are more aware of him than almost anyone, so there's no having it backfire to talk about him.  Whatever happens to Romney, he won't get shrugged off.  He'll do well, or he'll get a hard push off the hill from voters.

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


[ Parent ]
He's read the Obama Iowa playbook...
I guess we'll see if it was the strategy or the candidate.  I think Pawlenty will start catching on if Huckabee doesn't run, because Huck would lock down Iowa and SC, ending Pawlenty's chances. Looking at the field now, I can't see Pawlenty not winning Iowa.  

[ Parent ]
I can
Gov. Barbour could make a serious play for Iowa, as could Sarah Palin.

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

[ Parent ]
I can, b/c Republicans don't evaluate their candidates like we evaluate their candidates......
They don't see the liabilities we see in Republican candidates.  It's easy for us, and for some establishment Republicans and the political media, to see the problems so many GOP Prez wannabes bring to the table.  But rank-and-file Republicans are in denial about those liabilities, they don't realize how damaging these people's problems are in November.

So they're not necessarily going to conclude Pawlenty's lack of charisma is less bad than anything hurting Bachmann or Gingrich or Barbour or Romney or others.

Pawlenty needs rank-and-file Iowa Republican caucusgoers to recognize his competitors' liabilities they way we do.  If they do that, Pawlenty emerges as a first choice for a lot more caucusgoers than think so today.  But if they don't, then he gets the Fred Thompson treatment, shrugged off in favor of others.

Remember this is the same party whose rank-and-file failed to see the liabilities of people like Christine O'Donnell, Joe Miller, Sharron Angle, and Ken Buck.  They've not been a clear-eyed bunch lately.  And that they'd even entertain taking Donald Trump as seriously as they are in recent polling suggests this is a continuing trend, not a one-cycle blip.

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


[ Parent ]
Romney is actually starting to make me a bit nervous
I suspect, though, that it will be hard for him to win, because I don't think he'll have much luck in Iowa or South Carolina. But someone needs to emerge who can really take the fight to him.

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

[ Parent ]
I actually think, under the right circumstances, Romney could win both Iowa and South Carolina
That is, if Gingrich, Bachmann, Cain and Santorum splinter enough of the religious right vote in Iowa, Romney could triumph with about 30 percent of the vote. Note that, according to CNN's '08 primary exit polling, 40 percent of Iowa Republicans are NOT Evangelical. Combined, McCain and Romney garnered 51 percent of this vote. If Romney held onto the 19 percent he garnered among Evangelicals and won about 2/3 of McCain's non-Evangelical support from '08, he'd reach 30 percent overall. And, with opposition like this...

Pawlenty - 16%
Barbour - 15%
Gingrich - 13%
Bachmann - 12%
Paul - 9%
Cain - 3%
Huntsman - 3%
Johnson - 3%
Santorum - 3%
Bolton - 1%
Roemer - 1%

He may not even need 30 percent to prevail.

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


[ Parent ]
That scenario isn't going to happen for a couple reasons......
Iowa requires organization to reach people and get them to caucus for specific candidates.  So you don't see that many candidates breaking into double digits.  Last time only 4 people reached double digits, even though Huckabee got only 34% in winning.

For a couple reasons, that reality most likely prohibits your projected outcome.

First, Romney isn't playing in Iowa as hard as last time.  His doing far fewer visits and events, far less paid staff, and when things ramp up surely far less TV.  He got burned last time, and he's trying to avoid that by doing a lot less there.  He doesn't want to be the frontrunner only to get burned, and he'll get his wish and won't finish in front.  If he gets the same 25% as last time, he'll be doing well.

Second, the organizational realities of Iowa caucuses are such that only one or two other candidates realistically can capture the evangelicals.  They're a cohesive bunch, they're not going to split up that much.

It's really hard to predict who will win Iowa or who could pop, but Pawlenty has real opportunity here.

Of course, the irony is so does Romney, more than last time, if Huckabee doesn't run.  The fundie favs this time have lesser public service resumes and greater liabilities than Huckabee last time, so Romney would have room for growth if he played as hard as last time.  Really, if he managed to win Iowa and then hold NH and NV as expected, that probably would carry him.

But Romney not playing as hard opens the door that much more for Pawlenty.

Ultimately I really think Romney is trying to be too cute by half.  "I won't play hard there because I'm afraid I might not win" is what Giuliani kept doing last time."  You can't win that way.  Granted McCain put all his marbles in NH, but that wasn't the same as Romney because Romney is simply expected to win NH, so his win there would just draw shrugs from voters in later states.

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


[ Parent ]
I doubt Romney will even run in Iowa
Most likely, he'll make a perfunctory effort like McCain in '08: show up for debates and try to get the endorsement of the Des Moines Register, but without sinking any real time or money into the state.

[ Parent ]
New Hampshire is obviously
always in the political conversation in some way, but is Romney facing the same sort of focus that Obama always is? If not, that probably explains the margin. Even if he were to lose the state, which is far, far from guaranteed, I think it would be just barely.  

"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 ]
In a Romney/Obama battle, I expect a low single-digit victory either way


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

[ Parent ]
Perhaps I am
thinking of something else, but I seem to remember reading that Romney wasn't particularly popular in New Hampshire, if he wasn't in fact hated.  

"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 ]
Ohio
My hope is that they draw Sutton into Kucinich's district and a nasty primary ensues in which Sutton wins.  

21, Conservative Gay Democrat, NM-2 (Childhood) TX-10 (Home) TX-23 (School);   DKos: wwmiv.

Your lips to God's ear
I have gone from finding Rep. Kucinich to be lovable and harmless to being obnoxious and pathetic.

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

[ Parent ]
.
I was fine with him up until this recent lawsuit about the olive pit or whatever it was.

21, Conservative Gay Democrat, NM-2 (Childhood) TX-10 (Home) TX-23 (School);   DKos: wwmiv.

[ Parent ]
I don't dislike him for that.
He shattered a tooth on an olive pit of an olive that was in his sandwich.  That shouldn't happen.

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


[ Parent ]
.
Three things: a lawsuit was unnecessary, the only way he could have shattered his tooth was if he hadn't been taking care of them for years, and he would have had to have been chewing way to enthusiastically for it to happen even then. It was his own fault, IMHO.

21, Conservative Gay Democrat, NM-2 (Childhood) TX-10 (Home) TX-23 (School);   DKos: wwmiv.

[ Parent ]
To be exact
He bit down, the pit struck the crown of the tooth and cleaved his tooth in two to the base.

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


[ Parent ]
If it's Kucinich vs. Sutton
I'm sending Sutton a check.

[ Parent ]
WI Recall: who will run?
A run down of what we have so far:

Jennifer Schilling has Declared against Kapanke, Jess King against Hopper, and Fred Clark against Olsen. Wasserman or Pasch is likely to pull the trigger against Olsen. All of them are current or former State Assemblymen/women, except for King, who is deputy mayor of Oshkosh. On the Republican side, Mary Scray, the chair of the Brown County Board of Supervisors, has expressed interest in running against Hansen.

I terms of more speculative stuff that I can think of:

Wirch may face Samantha Kerkman, a Republican state rep who represents most of outlying Kenosha County. Holperin has is pick of Republican State Reps: all three of the reps in his district (Dan Meyer, Tom Tiffany, and Jeffery Mursau) are Republican. Harsodrf could face Ann Hraychuck, the former State rep from the 28th and former Polk County Sheriff.

Against Cowles, our best candidate would probably be former Assembly majority leader and lt. governer candidate Tom Nelson, but he might be ambitious enough to run for Governor instead (please don't).

Is there anyone I'm missing?


Erm.... correction
Wasserman or Pasch is likely to pull the trigger against Darling

[ Parent ]
Nelson's probably out against Cowles
He was just elected Outagamie County Exec. It would look weird to run for a third office in less than a year.

[ Parent ]
One Wisconsite here predicted
Nelson would be a top pick to run in 2014.

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


[ Parent ]
That was me.
By that time he will have been OutCo Exec for years, not weeks.

[ Parent ]
Yep, of course.


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


[ Parent ]
I hope we don't see Nelson for Governor any time in the near future
My top two picks to run against Walker in the recall are Russ Feingold and Ron Kind respectively. I know a lot of people here aren't huge fans of Feingold, but it's really hard to make the argument that Nelson would be a better candidate than Kind.

[ Parent ]
We need a candidate against Walker who's willing to draw a contrast
And that's not Feingold. He refused to tell his constituents why it would be a bad idea to vote for Johnson and refused to let anyone else do it either. A recall election is by definition almost entirely negative.

[ Parent ]
Sadly, Feingold's undoing
was that he was too nice.

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


[ Parent ]
Believe me, I've heard all the arguments against Feingold as a candidate
It's just that there's nobody I'd rather have as my Governor, and I doubt he could successfully tell outside groups to fuck off this time around even if he had any interest in doing so.

But even if we're just talking strength as a candidate, I'd take Ron Kind over Tom Nelson any day.


[ Parent ]
I still think
The most likely opponent for Walker in the recall election is Barrett. I think the conventional wisdom is that he's a solid candidate who ran a pretty good campaign but lost largely because of the environment. And I'm guessing he's going to get the right of first refusal.

As far as 2014, I'd agree that Feingold and Kind would be the most likely candidates


[ Parent ]
Barret? "pretty good campaign"
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

Feingold, who a lot of people like to pick on, outperformed Barrett by a couple of points. He had basically no field operation whatsoever. I don't think either of them could have won, but Barrett definitely did a worse job trying.


[ Parent ]
But Barrett wasn't an incumbent.
Couldn't that explain a lot? For all of his faults, Feingold served the state for a long time, and he wasn't hated in the same way that, say, Santorum was, so he didn't go down by nearly as big a margin.  

"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 ]
Incumbency wasn't the biggest advantage in the world, considering the state of the economy in 2010.
Look, you can probably convince me that Feingold didn't run the best campaign in the world, but there's no way in hell you're convincing me that Barrett ran a better one. The DPW was practically running his campaign for him, to the extent that his campaign existed.

Not to mention Ron Johnson being a far better candidate for that cycle than Scott Walker.


[ Parent ]
There's
no academic proof for this, but it seems as if being a long-serving incumbent, based on what I've noticed, is usually worth a few more points than you'd otherwise see from a candidate from the same party. Barrett and Feingold ended up with very similar margins, but only one was the incumbent. Their margins were, in other words, basically the same. Maybe the answer isn't so much that Barrett ran a better campaign but that Feingold ran a worse one.  

"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'm not really sure you understand some of the dynamics that were at play in Wisconsin that year.
People where by and large just voting against Democrats that cycle, up and down the ticket. Our only statewide candidate to win Doug La Follette for SoS, barely held on, and dammit, his last name was La Follette. Do I think that Feingold could have improved by a couple points if he had come out Blasting Ron Johnson early and kept it up? Absolutely. However, I think you're overestimating the extent to which incumbency helped Russ. This was just a year were barely 50% of voters were even willing to CONSIDER voting for a candidate with a D next to their name. That, combined with the fact that Walker was just as much of a political insider as Barrett and therefore couldn't run adds like this, and you've pretty much eliminated the effect of any residual incumbency advantage Feingold might have had.

[ Parent ]
Maybe I don't.
The difference between Barrett and Feingold, which was two points, is probably a good measure of the power of incumbency--unless Barrett was really that much worse as a candidate than Feingold was. But maybe as you said, I just don't have an appreciation for what happened in Wisconsin last year, so I can't really say anything else.  

"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 ]
The major problem with Barrett, IMO
Wasn't so much that he was a horrible candidate PER SE, but that nobody really cared about the Tom Barrett campaign, including Tom Barrett. He ran because Obama talked him into running, but he never really got invested enough in the campaign to come across as at all passionate, or get invested in long-term planning or making sure things ran smoothly. I like Barrett personally, and there's a chance I'd support him for statewide office again at some point in the future if he seemed like he was really into it, but he seems pretty happy with his current gig as Mayor of Milwaukee. I doubt he's really gunning for a rematch just yet, so I suspect he'd have some of the same problems in the recall election that he had in the original election.

[ Parent ]
Do you think Walker
was a good candidate? If no, then would have someone stronger won by a bigger margin? A loss is a loss, and losing by seven points isn't particularly impressive, but it's also not a blow out.

On a kind of related note, when all of this union busting bullshit was first thrust into the news, someone said that Barrett could probably waltz into a senate seat if he wanted it. What was that about?  

"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 think Walker was a particularly good candidate, no.
He was more or less running as "generic republican," and basically regurgitated the same tripe that Republicans have been saying for decades. At least Ron Johnson was creative occasionally. Someone better probably would have padded the margin by another couple of points.

As for the Senate Seat thing, I have no clue what that was about, as Herb Kohl is probably running for re-election, Ron Johnson isn't up until 2016, and there isn't really a State Senate seat he could run in.


[ Parent ]
Where are you getting that number?
The difference between Barret and Feingold was tiny, a half a percent.

Walker got less than 3000 votes more than johnson.  There is virtually nothing to analyze about the difference between Feingold and Barret's performances.... and most of the difference is almost certainly due to Walker being a slightly stronger candidate than Johnson.


[ Parent ]
Sheesh, I was way off.
I thought there was a difference, although a small one, between the Walker-Barrett margin and the Feingold-Johnson margin. Perhaps I was thinking of a different race, but whatever the case, I just looked up the numbers and it's clear I am wrong. Which, of course, makes my original point useless.

Moving on...

"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 ]
Concerned about poll
There's this poll out.

http://www.snc.edu/communicati...

That shows people more inclined to keep the state senators that are up for recall.  I'm worried about how successful the recall effort will be.


[ Parent ]
Kapanke has to be toast...
They need to flip three of the six and hold on to Dem incumbents facing recall.  

Kapanke and one more could be enough to reign in Walker as Shultz voted against the anti-union bill and probably could be counted on to block Walkers other crazy attempts in the future.  


[ Parent ]
A statewide poll like that doesn't gauge properly
Especially since it almost certainly includes voters whose Senators aren't up for recall. Each race will be different.

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

[ Parent ]
statewide polls
Agreed about the Senate polls.  But I don't like the results for Walker.  I hope we can be strong enough to bring him down a year in.

[ Parent ]
The results for Walker are good for and ominous for him......
Walker's job approvals are clearly underwater in all polling, but some people who disapprove of him don't necessarily reflexively want to recall him.  There are going to be disapproving voters who still as a matter of principle, since a Governor is supposed to get a 4-year term and yanking him shouldn't be done impulsively, hestitate to support a recall.  In spite of that, Walker is at only 50-50.

I wish St. Norbert had polled his job approval, because I guarantee it would've been worse than his recall number.

And on the state Senate recalls, other reply comments here are right that the poll is useless for gauging support for those where it matters:  in the districts where recall elections will qualify.

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


[ Parent ]
They're polling a question that won't be on the ballot
Once we have the signatures, people don't choose whether or not they want a recall. They choose whether they want the incumbent or the Democratic candidate. What this tells us is that 47% of people would sign a recall petition for Walker, which means that at least a couple percent more would vote for a democrat over him. PPP also polled the recall question, and found a substantial gap between the people who favored recall and the people who would vote for a democratic opponent in an election, given the chance.

[ Parent ]
NJ-Redistricting: The teabaggers can't play holier than thou on this.
Their map was pack-tacular, squeezes in another GOP district in the NE corner of the state, deliberately moves a Dem district further into Monmouth, and other partisan gerrymanders.

They have little to no grounds on this and have an even lower chance of success.  

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


NV-Sen: Ensign NOT off the hook.
http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpoi...


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


As I said yesterday...
What's happening is more about Sandoval and Heller trying to game the election in Heller's favor...

But so far, it looks like there's plenty of potential for this stunt to backfire on them. Not only may Heller face baggage as "the corrupt crony pick" and as someone immediately becoming an "incumbent" most voters don't really know, but the GOP may even risk losing NV-02, depending on how our SoS rules on special election rules.

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


[ Parent ]
If NV-02 gets messy with court challenges...
or Angle ends up winning, I wonder if there will be any blowback on Heller and Sandoval for making a mess out of the situation when Sandoval could have named a placeholder and left Heller in his House seat.  

And if Angle is frozen out by the process I wonder if she'd cause a huge fuss and potentially turn her supporters against Heller and the establishment GOP.  


[ Parent ]
NM-01
Oh dear God... why oh why can't Marty Chavez just leave us alone?

Politics and Other Random Topics

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


And...
From your mouth to Ed Case's ears.

[ Parent ]
Also
Dan Seals '12!

21,Democrat, NY-02, male

[ Parent ]
Alas, he's out for 2012
As far as I know...his website is down as is his campaign account.

[ Parent ]
So I getz
California maps for my Birthday. I'm very happy.

MO Redistricting
I'm surprised you didn't use this gem from the article linked;

Scott Rupp said: "My job is to carry the football across the goal line, and it's hard if every day you wake up and the goal line has been moved. So hopefully we've found the goal line, and I'm lunging in the fourth quarter with four seconds to go, and I'm trying to put 51 percent of that football across the goal line."

This is pure conjecture on my part, but I'm wondering if the holdup here is a faceoff between Rupp and Diehl, Diehl wants as much of St. Charles county as possible, but also very much wants to keep Wentzville (home of his senate counterpart Scott Rupp quoted above) in the old 9th/future 3rd so as to avoid a major potential primary fight. If Rupp is looking at a house run too this might explain MO-9 Rep Luetkemeyer being floated as a Senate candidate too - thus making in more logical for the house to keep Wentzville in that district instead of Akin's...

If I had to be I think this whole thing blows up and the courts draw the map, which would still likely doom Carnahan, but would end up with the less friendly 5th district map we discussed yesterday.

BTW 3 time 5th CD GOP nominee Jacob Turk was meeting with Todd Akin last night to make a last chance pitch to force that "Fair" 5th CD that includes all of Jackson County.

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


Scott Rupp
Scott Rupp's ability to craft apt sports metaphors is exceeded only by his ability to craft maps for which his caucus members will actually vote "aye."

That's an interesting conjecture, though, notpjorourke, and would certainly explain a lot.  

Kansan by birth, Californian by choice, and Gay by the grace of God.


[ Parent ]
Also re this
"I'm trying to put 51 percent of that football across the goal line"

Any part of the ball has to cross the goal line, not 51%. LOL, can you imagine replays:

Ref 1: "Looks like 47% to me. No touchdown."

Ref 2: "You're forgetting the laces. That takes it up to 50.5%, which rounds up to 51%."

Ref 3: "No, you can't round up like that. If Ted Williams had batted .3995, he still wouldn't have actually hit .400 because that means he would have gotten a hit in 40% of his at bats. He got a hit in less than 40% of his at-bats. So this ball is less than 51% past the goal line."

Ref 2: "But are we viewing the goal line as an actual painted stripe on the field, or an imaginary one-dimensional line having zero width?"

Ref 3: "If we do that, then is the ball a zero-dimensional dot? How can you have 51% of something with no size?"

Ref 1: "Like I said, no touchdown."

Ref 2: "But then there can never be a touchdown!"

Ref 1: "That's a problem for the league office. Not us."

REF 1: AFTER REVIEW, THE RULING ON THE FIELD STANDS. THE BALL CARRIER FAILED TO ESCAPE THE DICTATES OF EUCLIDIAN GEOMETRY. NO TOUCHDOWN.


[ Parent ]
LA-02
That would be bad for Richmond. Boissiere is well-known and well liked and his district was the basis for the new LA-02.  

Fuck yeah!
The other digest for today was like eating a single potato chip.

A Pringle?
Bet you can't eat just one.

Might be a tagline for the Digests... a bad one.  

Independent Socialist & Chair of SSP Cranky Indianian Hoosier Caucus, IN-09


[ Parent ]
^^I thought that was Lay's signature line.


35, Male, Democrat, MD-8

[ Parent ]
It probably is.
I know even less about potato chip advertising than I do about politics.  

Independent Socialist & Chair of SSP Cranky Indianian Hoosier Caucus, IN-09

[ Parent ]
The last several digests
have gotten huge numbers of comments. I would guess that SSP's traffic is doing pretty well. At minimum, its level of engagement is.

[ Parent ]
No need to guess
It's all publicly available. And we are in fact at record highs. Obviously our traffic is highest right at election time (as you can see here), but if you look back to the same timeframe in 2009 (here and here), you'll see that our traffic was around 350K pagviews/month. We're well over that now. And even though April had a huge one-time boost thanks to #KloJo, March did not, and we racked up 500K views then, which I think is our biggest month ever that didn't feature a single liveblog.

[ Parent ]
Doesn't surprise me
The comment counts have been as big as any I can remember from 2008. All the more reason to make sure you "cross your ts" for the move over the Dkos. It would be a shame to shed any of what you've got here.  

[ Parent ]
Trump for Secretary of Commerce!
His plan to fix the economy? File bankruptcy, lay off all of the workers, and collect a golden parachute in the process. Flawless plan.

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

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


Dan Lungren
dude, check out the last link (the one about Republican redistricting victims). I never knew Dan Lungren was that creepy looking. He reminds me of my heroine-addicted suitemate from freshman year (who incidentally is from LA, but not Long Beach).

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/


Also
where the hell is Allen West looking? (unless he's cross-eyed, which would make me a dick)

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 ]
It seems laughable
that Lungren was semi-seriously talked about as the 1996 GOP VP candidate. Well, I guess he wouldn't have been any worse than Palin.

[ Parent ]
Yeah, he made Dole's shortlist
... even though he was only the state attorney general. (Though, to be fair, he had also served 10 years in Congress during the '80s.) He was considered a big rising star in the late '90s - National Review put him on their cover at one point and called him "The Great Right Hope," heir to Reagan, etc., etc.  

[ Parent ]
And it fell to Earth back in November 1998.
Now, he's an afterthought.

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


[ Parent ]
Random, but where did the Bob Dold! (with a !) come from?
He's my Congressmsan so I've always wondered that when I see it on here.

I miss SSP. Republican, IL-10

Simpsons reference, I believe
Because Bob Dole always said his name like that on the show.

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 ]
Oh! Thanks!


I miss SSP. Republican, IL-10

[ Parent ]
SNL, too
Norm McDonald's impersonation of Bob Dole featured this prominently.

[ Parent ]

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