Special Elections Archive:

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

VA-Lege: Dems Pick Up Another Seat in Special Election

Posted by DavidNYC

Democrat Mark Herring won a special election to VA's state Senate tonight. What makes this especially welcome news is that the seat was formerly held by a Republican, so this counts as a pickup for us. I believe the margin in that chamber is now 23-17. Virginia's on a roll - excellent work, guys!

Posted at 08:50 PM in 2006 Elections - State, Special Elections, Virginia | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

Thursday, December 15, 2005

CA-50: Special Election Dates Set

Posted by DavidNYC

As I expected, Gov. Schwarzenegger decided to consolidate the special election in California's 50th congressional district - necessary because of the resignation of bribe-taking felon Duke Cunningham (R) - with the statewide primary on June 6th. This means that the first round of this election will take place on April 11th. As with CA-48, the top finisher in each party will advance to the general election, unless one person takes 50%. Our candidate is Francine Busby (though some other small-time names might get into the mix), while the GOP side is unsettled:

Sen. Bill Morrow, R-Oceanside, former South Bay congressman Brian Bilbray and former Assemblyman Howard Kaloogian of San Marcos, all Republicans, have said they intend to seek the 50th District seat.

I would like to know why this news hasn't yet been posted to Busby's website or blog.

Anyhow, there are also some special elections coming up in January for VA state legislature seats as well. Plus, in a few days, the recount for the VA AG race will begin - but it should be a quick, two-day affair. Good luck, Creigh Deeds!

Posted at 07:40 PM in California, Special Elections, Virginia | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

Monday, November 28, 2005

CA-50: Special Election Dates

Posted by DavidNYC

Sections 10700 and 10703(a) of the CA Elections Code cover special elections in the event of a congressional vacancy. Here's what they say:

10700. The Governor shall call all statewide special elections by issuing a proclamation pursuant to Section 12000. Except as provided by Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 10730), in the case of a vacancy in a congressional or legislative office the Governor shall issue a proclamation, within 14 calendar days of the occurrence of the vacancy, calling a special election in accordance with Section 10703. A copy of the proclamation shall be sent to the board of supervisors of each affected county.

10703(a). A special election to fill a vacancy in the office of Representative in Congress, State Senator, or Member of Assembly shall be conducted on a Tuesday at least 112 days, but not more than 119 days, following the issuance of an election proclamation by the Governor pursuant to Section 1773 of the Government Code, except that any special election may be conducted within 180 days following the proclamation in order that the election or the primary election may be consolidated with the next regularly scheduled statewide election or local election occurring wholly or partially within the same territory in which the vacancy exists, provided that the voters eligible to vote in the local election comprise at least 50 percent of all the voters eligible to vote on the vacancy. (Emphasis added.)

Breaking it down:

• The governor must issue a "proclamation" within 14 days of today. That's Monday, Dec. 12th.

• Then, the governor must set a date that is from 112 to 119 days after the proclamation. So the potential range is anywhere from 112 to 133 days from now - in other words, March 20th to April 10th.

• Ah! But there's a wrinkle! The final bolded bit of the statute says that the governor can consolidate a special election with a regular election if it could take place within 180 days of a statewide election. Guess what? There's a statewide primary election on June 6th.

• So if Schwarzenegger waits 10 or more days to issue the proclamation, then things fall into that 180-day window. Which means that the special election would be combined with the primary on 6/6/06. Whoa - that's a hell of a day, huh?

Two tugging forces will likely decide how Schwarzenegger acts: On the one hand, Arnold was widely criticized for wasting state money by calling a special election for this fall. If he waits just 10 days, he can save money by consolidating the special election. On the flipside, some in the GOP might be calculating that a low-turnout special election is better for their chances, especially since CA Dems appear to be energized. That one cuts both ways, though - a special election helped bring lots of attention to Paul Hackett, but it also seems to have hurt Steve Young running in CA-48, whose race hasn't been getting a lot of coverage.

My guess is that Arnie looks out for his own interests here and waits a week and a half so he can consolidate. His own political fortunes are too shaky to allow him to stick his neck out for the national GOP.

P.S. Chris Bowers breaks down the district's demographics and voting patterns here.

Posted at 04:39 PM in California, Special Elections | Comments (9) | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

CA-50: Dukestir Resigns

Posted by DavidNYC

Ah, it's nice for a prediction to pan out every once in a while. November 6th, yours truly:

Now, DeLay has decided to hold on to his seat despite his indictment, but some of his fellow Republicans are allegedly incensed by that decision, and I don't blame `em - who wants that kind of albatross for a necklace? But while DeLay can probably sink his nails in and cling to life, Cunningham doesn't have a friend in the world. If he has any brains, he'll resign if he's indicted - why would he want to be criminally indicted lame-duck Congressman for a year?


Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham tearfully resigned Monday after pleading guilty to bribery and admitting he took $2.4 million to steer defense contracts to conspirators using his leadership position on a congressional subcommittee.

So, actually, the Dukestir was one step ahead of me - he had a final trick up his sleeve. He plead guilty before the prosecutor issued any indictments. Sneaky, sneaky. Anyhow, been nice knowin' ya. What this means now is that we've got yet another special election brewing, in a district Bush carried by just 55-44. Our candidate is Francine Busby - go check her out.

Posted at 03:22 PM in California, Special Elections | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

CA-Ballot: SUSA Poll is Bad News for Arnie Opponents

Posted by DavidNYC

Survey USA just released polls of the "first five" CA voter initiatives that are on the ballot this fall. These have all been pushed big-time by the Governator, and the results are not encouraging for his opponents (likely voters, early Oct. in parens):

Proposition 73 requires that physicians notify the parent of a pregnant minor at least 48 hours before performing an abortion.
Yes: 60 (59)
No: 38 (39)
(MoE: ±4.0%)

Proposition 74 extends the probationary period for new teachers from 2 years to 5 years, and makes it easier to dismiss teachers with unsatisfactory performance evaluations.
Yes: 53 (55)
No: 45 (44)
(MoE: ±4.0%)

Proposition 75 prohibits public employee unions from using union dues for political purposes without the written consent of union members.
Yes: 56 (60)
No: 42 (37)
(MoE: ±4.0%)

Proposition 76 limits growth in state spending so that it does not exceed recent growth in state revenues.
Yes: 58 (58)
No: 41 (36)
(MoE: ±4.1%)

Proposition 77 changes the way California draws boundaries for Congressional and legislative districts. District boundaries would be drawn by a panel of retired judges and approved by voters in a statewide election.
Yes: 54 (59)
No: 41 (36)
(MoE: ±4.1%)

The balance on each question is the undecideds, which are very small across the board.

So, it looks like bad news, but SUSA offers some cautionary notes:

1) Support for all 5 measures is strongly tied to approval of Governor Schwarzenegger.

2) Interest in ballot measures intensifies as the election approaches and ad dollars are spent to influence voters. These numbers can and should be expected to fluctuate, perhaps significantly.

3) SUSA asked summary questions; other organizations have read the entire text of the ballot measures. As SUSA says, "On 11/9/05, we will know which question wording produced a more accurate pre-election poll."

So basically, #1 says that if Arnie opponents and Dems show up in force, these measures will probably get defeated. The problem is that Arnie supporters and Republicans favor these measures by much greater margins than opponents disfavor them, so we'll need big turnout to counter that effect.

Point number 2 could go either way, but since at least some of these initiatives are backed by big corporate money, that could actually be dangerous for our side.

And number 3 is a bit surprising. SUSA actually provides links to polls by other outfits (Field here and here and the Public Policy Institute of California - all links PDFs), which I'm not sure I've ever really seen any pollster do. I respect that, though, because it means that SUSA is really interested in accuracy, not just promoting its own product.

Field shows mixed results, while PPIC shows voters opposed to most of the measures. It's hard to guess which methodology might be more accurate. Do voters tend to memorize rough descriptions of each ballot measure before going into the voting booth? (That would favor SUSA's approach.) Or do they actually stand there and read the descriptions before deciding? (Field/PPIC.) Hard to say, though I imagine there must be some comparison polling out there dealing with older ballot issues.

UPDATE: Julia in comments points out that there was indeed an ealier poll on these measures, so I've added in the trendlines. It doesn't look like there's been much movement in the past two weeks, except perhaps for a little bit in our favor on 75 and 77.

Posted at 01:36 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Redistricting, Special Elections | Comments (4) | TrackBack (1) | Technorati

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

OH-02: SSP in Mother Jones' Hackett Stories

Posted by Bob Brigham

Mother Jones posted their cover story on the OH-02 Special Election:

The Ohio Insurgency: The Democrat who Fought
Major Paul Hackett came home from Iraq to launch an assault on a GOP stronghold. Can Democrats follow his lead?
By David Goodman

They have now also posted a companion piece that provides a timeline of blog support for Paul Hackett:

The Digital Insurgency
How liberal bloggers and their readers fueled Paul Hackett's rise
By Jonathan Stein

On Election Night, I mentioned this was coming. Thoughts?

Posted at 02:13 PM in 2005 Elections, Netroots, Ohio, Site News, Special Elections | Comments (12) | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

Thursday, October 06, 2005

OH-Sen: The Story So Far

Posted by DavidNYC

Way, way back at the start of the year, President Bush followed all second-term presidents in performing a time-honored rite: the cabinet reshuffle. We saw some dear old friends depart, like John Ashcroft and Colin Powell. We were introduced to some wonderful new faces, like Alberto Gonzalez. And some of our long-time buddies just couldn't bear to leave, like Condi Rice and Donald Rumsfeld.

Almost lost in this misty-eyed pastoral is the tremendously important post of US Trade Representative. Whoever holds this job is responsible for travelling around the world on the government's tab to convince foreign countries to buy our goods. What an awesome job. The lucky fellow who held this job in Bush's first term was one Robert Zoellick, who became a Deputy Secretary of State at the start of Bush's second term. Ah, Bob, we hardly knew ye.

To fill this crucial gap in our nation's governing apparatus, George Bush tapped Robert Portman to fill Zoellick's big shoes. Portman, you see, was a Congressman from southwest Ohio, roughly in the neighborhood of Cincinnati. His district - Ohio's second - was one of the most conservative in Ohio, if not the nation. It had reliably sent a Republican to Congress for decades, and Democrats hadn't poked their heads above a feeble 30% or so for a long, long time.

Smart play by Mr. Bush: Tap a solid insider for your cabinet, and ensure that you don't lose any ground in the House. And the plan worked, too - but you couldn't ask for a better illustration of "be careful what you wish for." So what happened along the way?

A certain blogger - me, as it happens - noticed the Portman nomination and espied the inevitable open seat and special election that would of necessity ensue. So I wrote about it over at the seminal Democratic blog DailyKos. I didn't view the race as winnable (not at the time, at least), but I did think it would give our side a great opportunity to do some political R&D - to experiment, be bold, hold nothing back. When you've got nothing to lose, you can be as aggressive as you want.

Meanwhile, things began to unfold on the ground in Ohio. The fateful primary election took place on June 14th. The Dems emerged with a man that almost no one had heard of - but he did have an interesting resume. Major Paul Hackett had just returned from serving a tour of duty with the Marines in Iraq - a war, believe it or not, he opposed. Who could speak with more authority - both intellectual and moral - on such an important subject, than someone with a background like that?

It turns out that Paul Hackett was also the sort of blunt, plain-spoken non-politician that so many Democrats had craved for so long. He was Howard Dean in fatigues. To many, Hackett's individual positions weren't nearly as important as his willingness to speak his mind. He definitely didn't vote for anything before he voted against it.

The blogosphere began to take serious interest in the race at this point - and a huge reason was Tim Tagaris, one of the editors of this humble magazine. Tim, on the ground with Grow Ohio, served as a crucial conduit between the online world and OH-02. Reports flowed in fast and furious from southwest Ohio. The Swing State Project (along with the OH-02 Blog) quickly became a hub for anyone who wanted to know more about the race or get involved.

As online activists started tuning in, volunteers began to flood the district as well. Hackett started getting real media coverage. He also had a lot of things going for him: Distrust and anger toward Republicans in the state of Ohio had been mounting since the Coingate revelations; Bush's popularity amongst Buckeyes had been steadily dropping; and he drew an opponent, Jean Schmidt, who was as corrupt (she took piles of cash from the now-indicted Tom DeLay) as she was feckless (she was reduced to defensively declaring she wouldn't be a "rubber stamp" during debates).

In the middle of the hubbub, Tim's fellow SSP editor, Bob Brigham, also decamped for the battleground of OH-02. Traffic exploded here as Bob and Tim tag-teamed the final days of the race. Back home, I kept the front page of DailyKos updated as often as I could. A certain energy crackled and infused everything about the whole campaign.

And people began to realize that this was no long just an opportunity to do some R&D - something much more was happening here. Hackett got scads of scrilla from online donations. The GOP got spooked and poured in big money of its own - in a district that Portman had won by 40 points the last time out. The establishment Dems took notice and fired back with a further cash infusion. The race was getting seriously, seriously hot.

It looked like Hackett could conceivably, possibly, just maybe win. No one knew for sure, of course - no one had done any independent, verifiable polling. But even if Hackett didn't win, lots of people - on the ground, in the professional commentariat, across the blogosphere - realized that a strong performance would send a message.

And boy did Paul Hackett send a message. Yeah, he lost - but by a margin much narrower than anyone would have dreamed. Republicans enjoyed scoffing about Hackett's loss, but there was jubilation on the Democratic side. Hackett lost by four points. The prior Dem who ran for this seat lost by ten times that margin. Anyone who refused to believe this showing didn't mean something truly had their head in the proverbial sand.

But the race did more than just send a message. A new star was born - and it wasn't Jean Schmidt. While she limped into her seat in Congress, Paul Hackett became a new Democratic Party star. His fearlessness and ability to connect with normal people (ie, everyone in America who doesn't suffer from D.C. Beltway Brain-rot) ensured that he wouldn't soon be forgotten. Just about everyone agreed he had a bright future in politics.

It turns out that his future was now. The Ohio GOP was reeling. Incumbent Republican Senator Mike DeWine, suffering atrocious approval ratings, was up for re-election in 2006. The Dems were looking for someone to take him on. A lot of people thought Paul Hackett would be the perfect guy to do that.

After some months of convincing, it appeared that Paul Hackett finally thought so as well, and rumors of his candidacy spread like wildfire across the Internet during the month of September. The way was clear for Hackett: Ohio Congressmen Tim Ryan and Sherrod Brown both indicated that they weren't going to run against DeWine.

As October rolled around (and the third quarter ended), an official announcement from Hackett was widely expected. (No candidate for office was going to announce right in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, in any event.) Yet a funny thing happened on the way to the election: Sherrod Brown, previously thought to be uninterested in the Senate race, started making noises that he would, in fact, throw his hat into the ring.

At that point, almost instantly, battle lines were drawn. Now, brother is pit against brother, more or less. Alright, so I'm making it sound like a melodramatic Civil War miniseries, only with fewer guns. But the dynamics are pretty fascinating.

Jerome Armstrong, the liberal blogfather and creator of the ur-blog MyDD, jumped on board Brown's ship. (Jerome is, in fact, working for Brown.) Jerome's greatest protege, Markos Moulitsas of DailyKos, has sided with Hackett.

And over here at the Swing State Project, the situation is no less jumbled. Tim, as I mentioned above, works for Grow Ohio, which means, like Jerome, he works for Sherrod Brown. Bob, on the other hand, has just started volunteering for Hackett and, as you can see from his posts here, supports him vociferously.

Today, however, Markos seems to weigh in on Brown's side, though the bulk of his readers support Hackett. Meanwhile, Tim (rightfully) wants to focus on RON, not an internecine battle. The Hotline's Blogometer has already noted a "split" in left-blogistan, but as all this indicates, the fault lines are far from clear. Indeed, Chris Bowers, the lead author at MyDD and Jerome's fellow blogger-in-arms, hasn't yet decided whom to support.

So where does this leave me? I count myself in the Hackett camp. But I definitely don't want to see a real blogspheric civil war emerge. We just don't need another huge round of infighting, like we saw during the Democratic Presidential primaries throughout all of 2003. The tide this year is turning strongly against the Republicans. Their corruption is catching up with them. Many will lose next year - both at the ballot box and in the courtroom. It's more important than ever that we stay united to capitalize on this perfect storm.

And the Swing State Project remains committed to bringing you the best coverage possible of the race - and that means reporting on the strengths and foibles of both the guys we support and the guys we don't.

I'll be honest: I wish Brown had chosen a different course of action. But since he's apparently committed at this point, all I'm hoping for is a good clean fight. So let's do this thing!

Posted at 08:30 PM in 2005 Elections, 2006 Elections, 2006 Elections - Senate, Democrats, Netroots, Ohio, Site News, Special Elections | Comments (33) | TrackBack (0) | Technorati

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

SCOTUS: John Roberts Confirmation Coverage

Posted by Tim Tagaris

Chris Bowers is on-the-ground at the John Roberts confirmation hearings in Washington, D.C. We aren't going to attempt to "out-cover" Chris, so I would point you there for the best of the best throughout the day. Check out Chris' coverage over at MyDD.

Also, I am certain that Think Progress will have real-time fact checking of Roberts' testimony. I cannot stress to SSP readers how amazing that site is.

Posted at 09:32 AM in Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, September 01, 2005

CA-48: Democrats Unite for Steve Young

Posted by Bob Brigham

Big news, from a press release:

California Democratic Party Overwhelmingly Endorses Steve Young for Congress from California’s 48th District

IRVINE, Ca. – On Wednesday, August 31, 2005, Region 18 of the California Democratic Party voted overwhelmingly to support Steve Young for Congress from the 48th District. The Party voted to enthusiastically endorse Young over a field of three other candidates, including John Graham, who had earned the endorsement in the previous two races for the 48th district Congressional seat.

“Tonight marks the launch of a new Democratic unity and the establishment of a new Democratic family,” said Young.

“Everyone worked together in good spirit for democracy,” said Jim Moreno, Regional Director of Region 18 of the CDP. “The proceedings went very well.”

The 54-member Region 18 caucus consists of delegates to the California Democratic Party who live in the 48th Congressional district, which falls within region 18 of the state Party. The caucus convenes each time there are candidates on the Democratic ticket vying for a local, state or federal office from region 18.

The Democrats are united, the GOP is splintered (see here to here).

Go visit Steve Young's website (warning, sound).

Posted at 09:33 AM in 2005 Elections, California, California, Democrats, Open Seats, Special Elections | Technorati

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

CA-48: Steve Young Launches Campaign Website

Posted by Bob Brigham

From a press release:

Campaign website features groundbreaking video technology that allows candidate to speak directly to site visitor from page; Will play important role in voter outreach

Steve Young, candidate for Congress from California’s 48th district, launched his new campaign website this morning. The website, http://steveyoungforcongress.com, outlines Young’s positions on the major issues affecting the 48th district as well as his detailed plan for reenergizing working families and small businesses.

Young’s website features Rovion’s proprietary BlueStream™, cutting-edge video technology that actually allows a lifelike video overlay of the candidate to automatically open and speak at the bottom of most pages. These videos can also be sent via webmail and will be used to contact voters throughout the campaign. Young’s campaign marks the most extensive use of this technology in a political campaign in the United States. Young’s campaign will explore new ways in which BlueStream™ can energize and motivate voters online.

“I am so excited about the new technology we are using on the site and I can’t wait to get feedback from the website’s visitors,” Young said.

I signed up at the Blogger's Corner. The calendar lists the Kickoff on Friday.

Posted at 03:31 PM in California, California, Democrats, General, Netroots, Open Seats, Special Elections | Technorati

Monday, August 29, 2005

CA-48: Special Election Turns Negative

Posted by Bob Brigham

CA-48 has Club For Growth's new negative ad:




These wounds won't heal by the runoff election. A fractured GOP, a third party nut, and Democratic West Coast Offense could all come together to give Democrats a shot in Orange County.

Posted at 12:12 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Open Seats, Republicans, Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, August 25, 2005

CA-48: Ballot Order

Posted by Bob Brigham

Here is the ballot order for the CA-48 Special Election:

1) John Kelly, Republican
2) John Campbell, Republican
3) David Crouch, Republican
4) Bruce Cohen, Libertarian
5) Steve Young, Democrat
6) Don Udall, Republican
7) Bea Foster, Democrat
8) Scott Maccabe, Republican
9) Guy Mailly, Republican
10) Marsha Morris, Republican
11) Marilyn Brewer, Republican
12) Marshall Sanders, Republican
13) Edward Suppe, Republican
14) Tom Pallow, Democrat
15) Bea Tiritilli, Green
16) John Graham, Democrat
17) Jim Gilchrist, American Idependent

It was priceless having OH-02 during the last special election. Now we have CA-48. It is my view that we need at least one of these for every district.

Posted at 05:42 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (2) | Technorati

CA-48: Silly DCCC

Posted by Bob Brigham

In the OH-02 Special Election, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee was rightly criticized for extreme tardiness. You would think that the DCCC would have learned their lesson as we head into the Special Election in Orange County. You would be wrong:

A spokeswoman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee did not return a call for comment on the race.

Luckily, Allan Hoffenblum, Republican political analyst and publisher of the California Target Book, returns press calls. He nails the race dynamics:

Although the congressional district is considered conservative, a Democrat or moderate Republican could win because of the state's unusual "open" primary rules in special elections.

All candidates are on the same ballot, regardless of party, and a candidate must receive more than 50 percent of the vote to win -- an unlikely event with nearly 20 candidates in the race.

If nobody wins, the top vote-getters of each party would face off in a Dec. 6 general election, and as the lone independent, Mr. Gilchrist is assured a spot.

A split among conservatives voting for Mr. Gilchrist and state Sen. John Campbell, reportedly backed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, could swing the vote to a Democratic candidate, Mr. Hoffenblum said. (emphasis mine)


Hat tip to CA-48.

Posted at 02:00 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Democrats, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

DCCC: Leave No District Behind

Posted by Tim Tagaris

In light of the recent "bubble-up" between the DCCC vs. the netroots and supporters of the 50 state strategy, I thought this piece leading off today's House Race Hotline was interesting (Nat'l Journal Subs Only):

Too bad there's no strong Dem candidate in the CA 48 special -- then we could really see if those charges of being a "rubberstamp" for Bush that were lobbed at GOPer Jean Schmidt in OH 02, will resonate on a nat'l level. Of course, after their heavy involvement in the OH 02 race, it's a worthy question to ask -- who could recruit a candidate first in CA 48, the DCCC or the liberal blogosphere?
Ready. Set. Go!

Posted at 03:04 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Democrats, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (4) | Technorati

Thursday, August 04, 2005

CA-48: Open Thread Question

Posted by Bob Brigham

If we can get 48% of the vote in the OH-02, can anyone give me a single reason why we can't get 50% +1 in Orange County?

Posted at 10:52 PM in Special Elections | Comments (8) | Technorati

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

OH-02: Jean Schmidt Campaign Manager Joe Braun

Posted by Bob Brigham

Annatopia says:

oh man, apparently someone is too busy covering their ass to run a campaign today...

If you want to know why she said that, it is because she has sources...

UPDATE: (Bob) Atrios says:

Schmidt Campaign Imploding?

Word is that Spankin' Joe Braun is too obsessed with what's being said about him on the internets to actually actively manage the campaign...

Wow. Must suck to be Joe Braun. Remember Friday's Hotline? The Washington Republicans didn't write the big checks because Joe Braun was doing a good job.

Posted at 01:21 PM in 2005 Elections, Ohio, Open Seats, Republicans, Scandals, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

Sunday, July 31, 2005

OH-02: Come Clean Jean!

Posted by Bob Brigham

Image hosted by Photobucket.com
Ohio is appalled that Jean doesn't know Schmidt about Noe

Official state documents prove candidate covered-up ties to corruption

Jean Schmidt is well known for never forgetting a face or a name. Conventional wisdom recognizes her renowned memory to the point where the Cincinnati Enquirer noted (July 31, 2005):

Schmidt knows the district very well, having almost a "file-card" memory to recall details about people, places and issues she's had experience with on the local level.

Yet on this morning's CBS 12 "Newsmakers" program, Jean Schmidt lied to the voters on – only two days before the election. In an effort to cover up Jean Schmidt's involvement in the scandalous culture of corruption, Schmidt said she didn't know Tom Noe. Schmidt said she'd never met Tom Noe. Schmidt said she had never even heard of Tom Noe. The woman with the "file-card memory" lied.

You see, Jean Schmidt was Vice Chair of the Higher Education Subcommittee of the House Finance and Appropriations Committee. During the same period, Tom Noe was a member of the Board of Regents.

In fact, on March 21, 2002, official state documents prove Jean Schmidt testified before Tom Noe's committee. Tom Noe seconded and approved the minutes for this meeting, which read:

There are a number of areas where we are totally lined up with [Jean Schmidt's] thinking. In any event, the conclusion is that we need more contact, more often.

And , additional official state documents establish that Tom Noe testified before Jean Schmidt's committee on March 18, 2003.

These official State of Ohio documents confirm ties between Jean Schmidt and Tom Noe.

And this isn't an isolated incident, there is a pattern of the woman with the "file-card memory" not recalling her ties to corruption.

When it came to lobbying Bob Taft for online casino gambling, she suddenly forgot everything. The Toledo Blade reported (July 29, 2005):

Jean Schmidt, a former Republican state representative from the Cincinnati area, also appealed to the governor's office on behalf of a Web-based lottery. [...]

In a November, 2001, e-mail, Jon Allison, a staff member for Governor Taft, complained that Ms. Schmidt "continues to bug me on Internet lottery."

One year later, her state representative re-election campaign garnered a $1,000 donation from Mr. Ach.

Ms. Schmidt said through a spokesman that she does not remember any conversations with the governor's office about an online lottery, although she does remember that this was a significant issue at the time.

The next day, the woman with the "file-card memory" was the focus of a Cincinnati Enquirer article headlined, Schmidt can't recall Ach favor.

It is time for Jean Schmidt to come clean about her relationship with Tom Noe, Bob Taft, Roger Ach and online gambling. The culture of corruption will continue until reporters demand that career politicians tell voters the truth.

Voters deserve straight talk, Come Clean Jean.

UPDATE: (Bob) Paul Hackett and former Senator Max Clelland are on the Courthouse Steps doing a press conference right now. The big three stations, channels 5, 9, and 12 are here. More to come...

UPDATE: (Bob) Paul Hackett just referred to Jean Schmidt as the, "Poster Child for the Culture of Corruption" as he held up the documents that busted her. During the press conference, it was clear why Hackett is such a successful attorney, he did a great job of telling the story.

UPDATE: (Bob) Max Clelland remarked, "The odor of corruption not only comes out of Tom DeLay's office, it also comes out of Columbus."

UPDATE: (Bob) Channel 19 was also there, along with the Cincinnati Enquirer. There is no way that the press can ignore this, you can't let politicians lie about their involvement in corruption.

UPDATE: (Bob) It is not too late to donate to Paul Hackett, help him FINISH THE JOB!

Posted at 12:59 PM in 2005 Elections, Activism, General, Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Scandals, Site News, Special Elections | Comments (7) | Technorati

Friday, July 29, 2005

OH-02: Blogosphere Surge Forces GOP Splurge

Posted by Bob Brigham

Be part of history, contribute today!

From the Cincinnati Enquirer:

In a sign that the 2nd Congressional District race might be tight, the National Republican Congressional Committee has dumped more than $500,000 into a TV ad campaign attacking Democrat Paul Hackett.

The ad buy was estimated at $265,000 in the Cincinnati media market, along with another $250,000 on Huntington, W.Va., stations that cover the eastern end of the seven-county district.

Jean Schmidt's campaign is being dragged down by the Culture of Corruption in the Republican Party. Schmidt was Governor Taft's rubber stamp and is campaigning to be Tom DeLay's rubber stamp.

Democrats, though, believe the TV ad blitz is the result of Hackett's success in raising his own campaign funds through online contributions.

Hackett has benefited from a surge of online support in the last week that has brought in, as of Thursday, an estimated $303,000 from more than 5,000 small campaign contributors through a Democratic group called ActBlue.com.

The online buzz for Hackett started last week when Democracy for America, the group founded by Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean endorsed Hackett's campaign in an e-mail to supporters, calling on them to contribute.

Several other liberal-leaning political Web logs, called blogs, urged their readers to contribute to Hackett on July 19, in honor or Blogosphere Day. On that date in 2004, online campaign contributions for Ginny Schrader, a Democratic congressional candidate in Pennsylvania, raised $25,000.

Hackett's online contributions, which increase each minute, surpassed the money raised for Schrader in the first day and continue to grow.

"This has never been done for a congressional candidate before at this level," said Tim Tagaris, a blogger who writes for Ohio Rep. Sherrod Brown's GrowOhio.org blog and, separately, SwingStateProject.com, one of the Web sites that urged online readers to support Hackett.

Hackett's on-line contributions have enabled him to spend far more money than any Democratic candidate in the historically Republican district.

Here is the worst. spin. ever.

But Braun said the help is significant. In the Huntington media market, Braun said, the $250,000 TV ad buy "is incredible. It's like one out of every three commercials that air."

Braun said the committee campaign is not an indication that Schmidt is in trouble, but "the first shot in the 2008 (presidential) battle."

No Joe, the Washington Republicans aren't buying one out of every three ads to fire people up for 2008. They're doing this because Schmidt's campaign blew a huge lead in an easy district. This buy was motivated by nothing other than The Fear.

Posted at 07:48 AM in Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Site News, Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, July 28, 2005

OH-02: John Glenn Calls for Hackett Volunteers to Report for Duty

Posted by Bob Brigham

From OH-02 Blog:

Decades ago, you gave me the chance, as a veteran and an astronaut, to become a citizen soldier again serving our state. I look at Paul and I see someone who wants to serve our state with every fiber of his character. I hope you’ll help give him the chance you gave me- but it won’t be easy.

In this tightly-contested special election, the Hackett campaign is relying on an all-volunteer get-out-the-vote operation to pull this extraordinary American through to victory.

We’re still short of the number of volunteers we need to fully deploy the Hackett campaign’s field organization. You can fill the gap by volunteering now.

Volunteer for Paul Hackett in the next 5 days

Please volunteer a few moments of your time to help the Hackett for Congress campaign step up its vital voter turnout efforts in these critical closing days. We don’t have a moment to lose.

I'll be there in the morning. Anyone with me?

Posted at 01:15 PM in Activism, Ohio, Special Elections | Technorati

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

OH-02: Jean Schmidt Cracks in Debate

Posted by Bob Brigham

Jean Schmidt After watching this video, I can think of few words that describe Jean Schmidt better than batshit crazy.

She lost her last her last election by 22 votes and it appears that the Fear has taken ahold of her. She's cracking, maybe she's already cracked. Who knows what type of crazed hallucinations have overcome her, but the Fear has taken it's toll.

It ended up in the local press and now the video is online.

Some people are good under fire, some crack up.

Posted at 02:54 PM in Ohio, Open Seats, Republicans, Scandals, Special Elections | Comments (2) | Technorati

OH-02: Netroots Investment Yielding Momentum

Posted by Bob Brigham

Swing State Project Paul Hackett Tim Tagaris and Swing State Project made CNN's Inside the Blogs yesterday. Of course, Crooks and Liars has the video.

The segment focused on the overwhelming momentum Paul Hackett is receiving from the netroots. Here at Swing State Project we've followed his success -- and it has been startling. Netroot Democrats want to see Hackett have the recources to compete in the face of the Swift Boat smears coming from the Schmidt campaign. Here is a netroots investment update:

$$$48 Hours Ago24 Hours AgoRIGHT NOW

And Eschaton is at $12,294.44 from 308 people. That is a quick $55K in the last 24 hours...the beat goes on!

Go contribute!

Posted at 12:33 PM in 2005 Elections, Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Site News, Special Elections | Technorati

OH-02: Schmidt Denies Being Rubber Stamp

Posted by Bob Brigham

Big Paul Hackett win in the debate . My favorite Jean Schmidt line, "We have to keep our eye on the ball or the ball will come back to harm us." That's right, in Jean Schmidt's world we keep our eye on the ball because we are scared of the ball. In Paul Hackett's world we keep our eye on the ball so we can smack it out of the park.

Schmidt's running scared, she's bungled an easy win, and her strategy of buying the race through overwhelming resources was stopped by the massive netroots support for Paul Hackett. Hackett has the momentum and every Democratic activist in Ohio is heading to the 2nd congressional district to put him over the top in this super-low turnout, August special election.

Tagaris is going to have some video, but here's the Cincinnati Enquirer:

In their last head-to-head debate before Tuesday's 2nd Congressional District election, Democrat Paul Hackett accused his opponent, former Republican state Rep. Jean Schmidt, of being a "rubber stamp" for the "failed policies" of the Taft administration, and said she can be expected to do the same for President Bush in Washington.

Schmidt insisted she will be an independent voice.

"I am not a rubber stamp," said Schmidt, who served in the Ohio House from 2001 to 2005.

Next Tuesday Paul Hackett finds out whether he is going to Congress or back to Iraq -- he's quite literally campaigning like his life depends upon it, and his message is getting through:

Nonetheless, Hackett mentioned Taft's name in the same sentence with Schmidt no fewer than 12 times, and used the term "rubber stamp" seven times.

His populist message is breaking through:

"The question is if you are better off today than you were five years ago," Hackett told the audience of a little over 100 at the school, just west of the Adams County seat of West Union. "Under the administration of Bob Taft and Jean Schmidt, Ohio lost 160,000 manufacturing jobs."

And Hackett's Iraq experience provides great contrast:

"I support the president in his mission to make sure the enemies of freedom stay on their shores and not on ours,"' Schmidt said. "We have to keep our eye on the ball or the ball will come back to harm us."

Schmidt said the Bush polices on Iraq are succeeding, saying, "The seeds of democracy have been planted. Democracy is on the march."

Hackett, who served seven months with a Marine civil affairs unit, said the reality on the ground is not what the Bush administration paints it to be.

"It's not pretty over there, it's not Hollywood, and we are not spreading democracy," Hackett said.

Candidate George W. Bush said in the 2000 presidential campaign that he would not engage America in nation-building, Hackett said.

"Guess what, folks?" he said. "We're nation-building."

Remember: "We have to keep our eye on the ball or the ball will come back to harm us."

Posted at 09:42 AM in 2005 Elections, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (5) | Technorati

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

OH-2: Hackett Earns Cincinnati Post Endorsement

Posted by Tim Tagaris

The beat goes on. From the Cincinnati Post ENDORSEMENT of Paul Hackett:

If elected, he notes, he would be the only member of Congress with direct military experience in Iraq - which, he says, is a fight we should end as soon as possible. He wants to finish the job and get out, and he wants the United States to stop holding hands with Pakistan and to get serious about tracking down those responsible for the 9-11 attacks.

We like Hackett's candor. We're impressed with the freshness of his ideas. We believe his experience shows him to be someone who is action-oriented.

We endorse Hackett for the 2nd District seat.

Big Mo'

UPDATE (Bob) 12:33 PM Exactly 24 hours ago I reported Paul Hackett's ActBlue page stood at $147,350.59 from 2960 people. Since then, Markos chipped in $100 and he was not alone.

The current total: $175,669.59 from 3,525 members of the netroots. And Eschaton's ActBlue is at $9,244.39 from 230 members of the netroots. And Hackett's on Majority Report's ActBlue page. And the beat goes on...

UPDATE: (Bob) Tim is live-blogging with Hackett RIGHT NOW!

UPDATE (Tim): I got video of Paul Hackett thanking the netroots for "blogosphere day."

Posted at 12:05 PM in 2005 Elections, Activism, Democrats, Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Technorati

Sunday, July 24, 2005

OH-02: Saturday with Paul Hackett

Posted by Bob Brigham

hackett.jpg Major Paul Hackett wants be the first veteran from the current Iraq War to also serve in Congress. This change of duty came a step closer yesterday when the Hackett camp had a successful day of organizing, both Tagaris and Crazy Catwoman were there, she says, "I will definitely do it again next Saturday." When she does, she'll be joined by Toledo Councilman Frank Szollosi among many others.

But today, I want to talk about the odds. From Chris Baker's OH-02:

In the closing days of the campaign you are going to hear more and more from the cynics and Beltway loser mentality liberals about how Hackett can’t win this race because it is such a solid Republican district. None of them have watched Republicans talk to Paul Hackett. None of it means anything.

One of the most interesting aspects of the game poker is what they call pot odds.

The typical Beltway Democrat will look at a race and if there isn’t a high chance of winning say forget it and save their money.[...]

What are the pot odds for the Democrats in the Ohio 2nd? The return for the Republicans is minimal. They aren’t going to win much of anything if Jean Schmidt wins. But for the Democrats the pot odds are massive. This is Bush’s home turf. This is the reddest district in the state that handed Bush the presidency. If the Democrats win here they will have punched open a breach in the heart of the Republican defenses. Suddenly all of the momentum will have shifted. Suddenly everyone will be listening to what Paul Hackett has to say and using his tactics to win other races.

Any poker player could tell you that the pot odds in this race are so good that you would be a fool not to bet on it. So in the coming days as you read more and more about what a hopeless race this is, do as Paul Hackett does and quote to them Thomas Paine: "Lead, follow, or get out of the way."

Tim Tagaris is on the ground, he'll be posting here and on Grow Ohio.

Posted at 12:06 PM in 2005 Elections, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Technorati

Friday, July 22, 2005

OH-02: Tim Tagaris In-District

Posted by Bob Brigham

Tim Tagaris has arrived in Ohio's second congressional district. Of course, he has the normal toolkit of laptop, cell phone, and AV.

He'll have on the ground updates of the OH-02 Special Election.

Posted at 04:04 PM in Ohio, Special Elections | Technorati

OH-02: Max Cleland: Send a Marine to Congress

Posted by Bob Brigham

UPDATE: (Bob) Via Chris Bowers, Paul Hackett is doing Al Franken today. Tune in.

Democrats are fired up for Paul Hackett. The midnight scoop by Tim Tagaris (Shock! Hackett with CoH Lead over Schmidt, rec'd on Daily Kos) has compounded the momentum.

The coingate scandal is reminding everyone about Jean Schmidt and her deeping scandals.

While Schmidt sinks, Democrats are coming together to send a marine to Congress. Mayor Paul Hackett received a major show of support from Max Cleland. Over at MyDD, Ann Driscoll covers a Hackett Veterans' Event with Max Cleland.

Also, the DNC sent a few million netroots Democrats an email from Cleland. Full copy in the extended entry.

Marine Major and Democrat Paul Hackett could be a first for our country -- the first veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom to be elected to Congress. He fought in the Fallujah campaign, took part in reconstruction efforts and worked side-by-side with Iraqi military and civil personnel.

Paul Hackett knows what's really happening in Iraq. And, he's ready to take his experience to Washington. He's running in the August 2nd special election in Ohio's 2nd Congressional District stretching from just outside Cincinnati eastward along the Ohio River.

Paul's campaign has a tough fight against some of the most entrenched special interests in Ohio. His opponent, Jean Schmidt, is a favorite of the corrupt and ever-present Republican establishment -- one that never misses an opportunity to smear and cheat.

Take a look at a day in the life of the two candidates. On the night of October 25, 2004, Jean Schmidt had dinner at an expensive restaurant and partied at a Bengals game in Cincinnati. Her trip, sponsored by a global bio-tech lobbyist, yielded yet another ethics scandal for Ohio Republicans.

That same evening, Paul and his men were keeping insurgents' supplies from entering war-torn Falluja. They ate the standard-issue MRE and fought to defend Iraqi civilians and their fellow troops.

At the end of the day, the choice for voters couldn't be clearer. In Jean Schmidt, they have the hand-picked choice of the backslapping insiders who sell the process to the highest-bidding right-wing group or corporate interest.

In Paul Hackett, voters have someone with first-hand experience in uniform and the drive to solve problems and put us on the right track. He proudly served his country in Iraq, and he's ready to serve in Washington.

So, take a moment and read the article about Paul Hackett below. Tell your friends, family and neighbors about what's happening in Ohio's 2nd District because it's a preview of what's to come next year -- real leaders stepping up to serve at a time of abuse of power and corruption in government.


Thank you,

Senator Max Cleland

If you haven't, go donate to Hackett. The current total stands at $137,024.02 from 2,728 online Democrats.

Posted at 11:47 AM in 2005 Elections, Ohio, Open Seats, Scandals, Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, July 21, 2005

OH-02: Iraq War Vet Runs for Congress

Posted by Bob Brigham

My inbox has had a solid stream of good news for Major Paul Hackett's bid for Ohio's 2nd Congressional. The August 2nd Election is less than two weeks away. I'm told Hackett's satellite offices are humming with scores of phone lines. The campaign is doing a major mobilization this weekend to run up the ID'd voters list so that the large GOTV program has more targets.

Republican state Rep. Jean Schmidt is bogged down in a late breaking scandal (see the ad). Schmidt's ethics scandal is invoking the "culture of corruption" meme against the Ohio Republican Party.

Last time I updated you on the ACTBlue page (38 hours ago), the total was $100,504.47. Now it is up to $129,805.92. If you haven't deployed a few bucks for this special election, please consider investing.

From the AP:

SEAMAN, Ohio - A few months ago, Paul Hackett was flushing out insurgents and avoiding ambushes in Fallujah, Ramadi and other hotspots in theIraq War. Today, the Marine is trying to round up votes in small southern Ohio towns like this one.

Hackett, a Democrat, is running in a special election Aug. 2 in a bid to become the first Iraq War veteran elected to Congress.

The stakes couldn't be higher, either Hackett goes to Washington or back to Iraq.

The 43-year-old lawyer, former Milford city councilman and Marine Reserve major is hoping his battlefield experience will help him become the first Democrat to get elected in Ohio's conservative 2nd District in three decades. [...]

That Hackett is on television at all is remarkable in deep-red southwestern Ohio, which helped tilt Ohio's crucial 20 electoral votes to Bush last year. Seven-term Republican Rob Portman regularly won with more than 70 percent of the vote before leaving Congress to becoming Bush's U.S. trade representative this year.

Army Lt. Paul Worley, 23, of Peebles, said he likes the idea of a congressman veteran as he prepares for Iraq duty later this year: "You can't substitute anything for leadership by example, somebody who's been there and seen it."

We need Major Hackett in Washington. Go check out the Paul Hackett website.

UPDATE: (Bob) Here is are some action items from histopresto's Kos diary:

1. Look on our website for a link to contribute and volunteer to the Hackett campaign.  Or you can find more information about Paul Hackett on his website and contact him directly

2.  Hamilton County: We are going to have a volunteer rally and canvass kick off on Saturday the 23rd at 10 AM at 1523 Madison in Cincinnati. We need to have everyone there. Please RSVP intern@hamiltoncountydems.org <snip> Bring your comfortable shoes and a car, if possible.  We'll be meeting rain or shine - bring a cell phone (free weekends!) to phone bank if the weather isn't great. If you cannot canvass but would like to help us on our phone banks, please let us know at intern@hamiltoncountydems.org

3. (Ohio residents) Check with your local County Democratic Party to see how they will be helping the 2nd congressional race. You can find your local county party contact information at our [website www.ohiodems.org]  Many local democratic county parties statewide have committed to send volunteers down to the Second Congressional race to help with Getting Out the Vote efforts the last weekend of the election by passing out literature door to door, making phone calls and helping on Election Day August 2nd


Or you can contact the Democratic Parties in the 2nd congressional district directly from their contact information on our website.

Adams County  

Brown County

Clermont County

Eastern Hamilton County

Pike County: Harold Cooper  740-493-2402

Scioto County

Southern Warren County


4. Hamilton County: Our Get Out The Vote project will have a huge canvass push the weekend before the election, on Saturday the 30th at 10 AM at the same location.  We need you there! Please RSVP to let us know that you will be there. intern@hamiltoncountydems.org

Posted at 04:30 PM in 2005 Elections, Activism, Ohio, Special Elections | Technorati

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

OH-02: Hackett Update

Posted by Bob Brigham

Happy Blogosphere Day!


UPDATESupportersTotal Raised
10:20 Central321$33,967.96
12:20 Central475$41,367.96
1:20 Central638$47,813.22
2:20 Central897$61,819.29
3:20 Central1106$70,698.14
4:20 Central1317$78,764.55
5:20 Central1397$85,244.59
6:20 Central11484$89,310.60

UPDATE (Tim): Of course, if you are from Ohio, you can volunteer for the campaign by going to Paul Hackett's volunteer page.

You can also view the grassroots produced video that draws a nice distinction between the two candidates running at Grow Ohio.

UPDATE (Bob & Tim): Atrios has a page for the Eschaton community ($740.00, $1055.01 $1651.80 $2,201.81) and Democracy for America is driving mad people to the main actblue page.

Posted at 01:33 PM in 2005 Elections, Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (5) | Technorati

OH-02: Email from Hackett Campaign

Posted by Bob Brigham

Two weeks from today, the voters go to the polls in Ohio's second congressional district. Spread the word, Paul Hackett needs our help. The online fundraising stands at $33967.96 from 321 people. Here's an email I just received from the campaign.

On Tuesday, August 2, the voters of the 2nd Congressional District can make a national statement by electing Paul Hackett. We'll tell the entrenched powers in Ohio and in Washington, DC that we are tired of corruption and abuse of power, and we want our country back on track.

And for the first time, we'll have a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom representing us in Congress -- a war veteran who knows first hand what it means to fight for his country.

Because this race is the only special election of the summer, the national spotlight will be on Paul Hackett and our campaign. That means we need people from all over Ohio -- and even from neighboring states -- to come help us win this important race. Every one of our phone banks must be filled. We need more people knocking on doors than ever before.

The entire state of Ohio -- and the country -- will be watching this race. Don’t let this special opportunity to make a bold statement pass us by!

Here are 5 ways you can help out:

1. Come To The Volunteer Meeting -- we'll rally volunteers and talk about our plan for victory for the last two weeks of the election.

Location: Paxton Ramsey Park, 6265 Price Rd., Loveland, OH
Time: Wednesday, July 20, 7 p.m.

2. Phone Bank -- get the word out and make the case about why our troops needs a voice in Congress.
- Hamilton County Democratic Party HQ, 615 Main St., Downtown Cincinnati
- Hackett HQ, 27 N. Second St., Batavia
- Crowley HQ, 1523 Madison Rd., East Walnut Hills
- Warren County Democratic Party HQ. 8 East 5th St., Franklin
Times: Tuesday July 19 - Thursday, July 21, 5 p.m.–9 p.m.

3. Join Us for a Major Canvass This Weekend -- This Saturday we are going to storm the 2nd District with a flurry of volunteers delivering Paul Hackett’s message to voters at their doorstep. (Hackett T-shirts, walk lists, maps, instructions and a brief training will be provided!)
- Old Kerry Headquarters Parking Lot, 1523 Madison Rd., 45206
- Steelworkers Hall, 11672 Gallia Pike, Wheelersburg, OH 45694
Time: Saturday, July 23, 10 a.m.

4. Take Election Day Off to Volunteer -- We still need volunteers to help with vital get-out-the-vote efforts. If you can help on election day let us know now so we can begin building a schedule for volunteers. Ask the boss now for a vacation say August 2nd!

5. Put Up a Yard Sign -- We just got another shipment of signs in. Pick one up at our campaign HQ or at any of the volunteer opportunities above.

For more information, call the campaign at 513-735-4310 or email us at hackettforcongress @ yahoo.com

Thank you so much,

Patrick Foster

P.S. -- Even if you can’t show up, please pass this message to someone who you think can, and consider making a last-minute donation to help us get people to the polls: http://www.actblue.com/list/hackett

We'll have more throughout the day...

Posted at 11:24 AM in Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, July 14, 2005

OH-02: Blogging the Special Election

Posted by Bob Brigham

From the new National Journal Beltway Blogroll:

Voters in Ohio's 2nd District will choose a replacement for Republican Rob Portman in an Aug. 2 special election, and The Stakeholder, the blog of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, is billing it as "a campaign that could cement the blogosphere's reputation as leaders in the Democratic Party."

Portman left the seat to become U.S. trade representative, and with Portman having won 72 percent of the vote in the district last fall and President Bush netting 63 percent, GOP candidate Jean Schmidt seemed to be a sure bet for victory. But that was before the Ohio Republican Party was rocked by a scandal involving state investments in rare coins.

Now the DCCC sees an opportunity to trim the Republican House majority, and it is calling on bloggers to help the cause by supporting Democratic candidate Paul Hackett. "Can we raise $25,000 in two weeks to get Paul Hackett elected?" Stephen Yellin wrote at The Stakeholder. "We did it in 2004 with Ginny Schrader in a week, and this race is no less important. And when I threw the first pebble into Ginny's wave of money, I knew that her race mattered. So does Paul Hackett's."

By way of reminder, Schrader was dubbed "the candidate of the netroots" by Daily Kos, which also created "Blogosphere Day" (July 19, in case you're wondering) to recognize how bloggers rallied around her campaign in Pennsylvania's 8th District.

I forgot about Blogosphere Day -- set your calendars. An appropriate tribute would be to support Paul Hackett.

Posted at 06:31 PM in 2005 Elections, Activism, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

OH-02: Jean Schmidt Scandal

Posted by Bob Brigham

As regular readers know, Swing State Project Senior Elections Analyst Tim Tagaris also has a day job working for Grow Ohio. Today, he's putting on a demonstration on how to turn some breaking news into a shitstorm of a scandal online.

First, he wrote a great post and then spread the word. Over at DailyKos, DavidNYC put it on the front page. At MyDD, Chris Bower put it on the front page. It's on the Stateholder. And OH-02.

This is a huge day in the Special Election for Ohio's second congressional district. Go check out the Jean Schmidt scandal.

Posted at 03:57 PM in 2005 Elections, Netroots, Ohio, Open Seats, Scandals, Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, July 07, 2005

CA-48: Bob Dornan and the American Independent Party

Posted by Bob Brigham

The special election in California's 48th Congression District could get very interesting. Toss out convention wisdom about Orange County, if this race goes three way with a big name, it could be very favorable for Democrats. From the LA Times:

Former U.S. Rep. Robert K. Dornan, a rabble-rousing Republican and notorious conservative who represented Orange County from 1985 through 1996, is eyeing another run for Congress, despite defeats in 1996, 1998 and 2004.

This time, Dornan, 72, is weighing whether to abandon the GOP and run as a candidate for the American Independent Party. He is hoping to gain a strategic advantage in a bid for the plum coastal congressional seat held by Rep. Christopher Cox (R-Newport Beach).

It gets weirder, and it appears Dornan will quickly go negative on Republican candidates (state Senator John Campbell and former Assemblywoman Marilyn C. Brewer).

Campbell and Brewer are too moderate and unreliable on such issues as abortion, said Dornan, who lives in Virginia but is registered to vote in Sunset Beach.

"This time, I'm not going to see a safe conservative seat go to someone like Marilyn Brewer," he said by telephone. He said social liberals, who he predicted would back both Campbell and Brewer, "are a metastasizing cancer on the Republican party to turn us into Democrats."

"metastasizing cancer"

Here's how it would go:

Running as an independent candidate has appeal, Dornan said Wednesday, because he would not have to change parties to appear on the ballot — as long as at least 40 registered American Independent Party voters signed his nomination papers.

All candidates would appear on the same ballot in the special election, with the top vote-getters from each party in a runoff if there is no clear majority. [...]

The American Independent Party has about 29,000 registered voters in Orange County, with 7,620 voters in Cox's 48th Congressional District. Republicans have 202,793 voters in the district; Democrats have 109,514.

The independent platform includes ending foreign aid and debt financing by state and federal governments, ending the federal income tax and international trade pacts, reducing immigration and ending subsidies to illegal immigrants. The group opposes abortion and claims it's the only party to support a state's right to recognize God and the Ten Commandments.

Here's some polling and the Seaborn strategy.

Posted at 10:58 AM in 2005 Elections, 2006 Elections - House, California, Special Elections | Comments (2) | Technorati

Friday, June 17, 2005

CA-48: Special Election Polling

Posted by Tim Tagaris

So, it's closer than I thought it might be:

Conducted by Probolsky Research (R). June 10-14, 2005. N=325 likely special election voters districtwide. (MoE +/- 5.5%)

John Graham (D): 22%

John Campbell (R): 31%
Marilyn Brewer (R): 8%

Don't Know/Undecided: 39%

The Democrat, John Graham is a university professor. For the Republicans, John Campbell is a State Senator and Marilyn Brewer is a business woman.

Posted at 02:29 AM in 2005 Elections, California, Polls, Special Elections | Comments (3) | Technorati

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

OH-02: Blogging the Special Election

Posted by Bob Brigham

I missed the A.P. story, but the Washington Post coverage couldn't be avoided (via Bring Ohio Home):

As the Associated Press reported, some politicians are experimenting with Weblogs to shake up districts known for predictable party-line votes.

The AP story takes place in Ohio, where liberal activist Chris Baker is trying to use blogs and other word-of-mouth techniques to muster support for a progressive candidate. The 2nd District, where Baker is working, provides the rare off-cycle opportunity to try something new after seven-term Republican Rep. Rob Portman joined the Bush administration as U.S. trade representative.

Eleven Republicans and five Democrats are jostling to fill Portman's shoes, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported, creating a pool of voters who could be receptive to messages delivered in original ways that set them apart from the competition.

Baker and his Republican counterparts said they believe the GOP will hold the 2nd District, though the Cincinnati Post reported that most of those candidates will have to struggle to distinguish themselves: "Of the 11 Republican candidates, four ... are widely viewed as the presumptive frontrunners. ... The other seven, most of them first-time candidates, offer a diversity of backgrounds and life experiences. Drawn from both the district's urban centers and remote rural outposts, they include several teachers, a part-time letter carrier, a former government worker, a lawyer, a financial analyst and a professional magician. ... Their best hope -- perhaps their only hope -- is for the better-known candidates to so seriously splinter the vote that a dark horse could perhaps slip through."

The AP said that in a field like this, liberal activist Baker will use the race "as spring training for the 2006 midterm elections and 2008 presidential contest. Baker posts reports and commentary on the campaign along with appeals from the candidates for volunteers and money. In one recent post, Baker referred to Republicans' efforts to court religious conservatives as a 'truly pathetic display,' and he continually refers to some Republicans as serving the Sith lord villains of 'Star Wars' movies."

Two of the 2nd District candidates, Bob McEwen (R) and Victoria Wulsin (D) started their own campaign blogs.


Posted at 02:53 PM in Netroots, Ohio, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

Thursday, June 02, 2005

CA-48: Chris Cox Out; Open Seat

Posted by Bob Brigham

California Republican Chris Cox will be leaving behind an Open Seat as he has been tapped for the SEC.

Of course, this seat is Orange County, but it does present Democrats an opportunity for life to imitate art...imitating political life.

This is the seat Sam Seaborn ran for on The West Wing. Viewers will remember that Seaborn took one for the team, serving as a big gun running in an awful district following a strange turn of events.

Seaborn lost, but it is important for us to fight in every district, every cycle -- all of the time. Hollywood is filled with such bigs guns talking about running for Governor or President. Right now, one of these people should can the talk and start working to take back Orange County -- starting with fighting for the California 48th.

Orange County isn't as bad as convention wisdom suggests. Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez calls it home and it has also elected Democrats like Richard T. Hanna and Jerry Patterson.

The trend could also be favorable for Democrats. Red Orange County resulted from Oakies and other midwesterners populating the area, but the current migration patterns of immigrants provided Sanchez her victory and could make the district far more competitive in years to come.

Open seats are targets of opportunity that are critical for a minority party. So let's put the Orange County jokes aside, find a good candidate ready to fight relentlessly, and give the immigrant communities a reason to vote for a Democrat.

Posted at 11:31 AM in 2005 Elections, California, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (2) | Technorati

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

San Diego Mayoral Special Election

Posted by Bob Brigham

I love Special Elections. While most regular elections are carefully scripted affairs that have been planned for years, Special Elections are last minute sprints. Following the abrupt resignation of San Diego's mayor, there is a Special Election scheduled for July 26th (likely to be followed by a runoff). From the AP:

SAN DIEGO - Fifteen candidates submitted signatures before a Friday filing deadline to run for a spot on the July 26 ballot to replace embattled Republican Mayor Dick Murphy. [...]

Donna Frye, a Democratic city councilwoman who nearly won a write-in bid in November's disputed mayoral election, is widely considered the front-runner to replace Murphy.

Frye, who is married to the legendary surfer Skip Frye, ran a surf shop and campaigned for clean water before joining the City Council in 2001. She has campaigned on a theme of ending what she sees as a culture of secrecy at City Hall.

With a surf shop owner leading the rag-tag pack, it isn't surprising to see she's facing competition for a valet, a P.I., and of course, a rich guy trying to buy the seat. Full candidate list after the break.

Donna Frye - City Councilmember
Jerry Sanders - Businessman
Jeremy Ledford - Sales for McKesson
Jonathan Schell - Software Engineer
Les Swazzo - Full time student
Paul M. Dekker - Computer Consultant
Tony V. Theodore - General Manager
George R. Cook - Property Manager
Bernard Palecek - Dir. of Operations, California Mortgage Consultant
James Galley - Water Plant Operator
Ed Kolker - Mediator
Christopher Perl - Customer Service Rep. 2/HSBC Auto Finance
Michael Hill - Bartender/Manager
Jim Bell - Ecological Designer
Michael Shelby - Motorcycle Sales & Services
John P. Casey - Small Business Owner
Richard Rider - Taxpayer Activist
Christopher McKerlie - Marketing Manager
Kent Mesplay - County Air Quality Inspector
Bret Patterson - Airline Employee
Thomas Knapp - Supervisor
Christopher L. Wylie - Teacher/Artist
Steve Francis - Executive Chairman-AMN Healthcare
Shawn A. McMillan - Attorney
Ronnie Douglas Lawson - Private Investigator
Joseph Braverman - Researcher
John Washington - Valet Attendant-Cashier
Mac Sperry - Activist, Writer, Political Theorist
Patrick Shea - Attorney Businessman

Posted at 11:46 AM in 2005 Elections, California, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

Saturday, May 21, 2005

San Diego Special Election for Mayor

Posted by Bob Brigham

On July 26th, San Diego will have a general Special Election to replace Dick Murphy who resigned from the office under scandal. As I'm sure you can appreciate, that is quite a sprint of a race that should be interesting to watch because of the candidates. From the AP:

SAN DIEGO - A wealthy Republican businessman on Thursday entered the race for mayor of scandal-plagued San Diego, joining a field that includes a maverick councilwoman and a former police chief. [...]

Steve Francis announced his candidacy by saying he was "ashamed, embarrassed and angry" at the city's leaders. "If you ran a business this way, you would be in jail," he said.

The 50-year-old Francis, executive chairman of a hospital staffing company, has already contributed $500,000 to his campaign, according to an e-mail sent to his supporters.

Francis served in the Nevada Assembly in the 1980s but is new to San Diego politics. His main opponents to date are former Police Chief Jerry Sanders, a Republican, and Councilwoman Donna Frye, a Democrat who nearly won a write-in bid in November.

Rich boy will have some dough, but Frye has the potential to captivate the narrative. Her candidacy is perfect for an agressive internet campaign, stay tuned to see if she takes advantage of the potential.

Posted at 01:25 PM in 2005 Elections, California, Special Elections | Technorati

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Oh-02: Open Seat Special Election

Posted by Bob Brigham

Ohio Second Congressional District special elecion breakdown, from a Cincinnati Enquirer acticle:

Special Primary Election: June 14
Special General Election: August 2

12 Republicans
7 Democrats
(Independents have until June 13 to submit 1,921 valid signatures)

Posted at 10:00 AM in 2005 Elections, Ohio, Open Seats, Special Elections | Comments (1) | Technorati

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