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Political Roundup for February 21, 2013

by: shamlet

Thu Feb 21, 2013 at 07:00:00 AM EST


Senate:

MA-Sen: 2010/12 congressional nominee Sean Bielat (R) has dropped out of the race for Senate, leaving a 3-man field on the R side of ex-US Attorney Michael Sullivan, State Rep. Dan Winslow, and Gabriel Gomez.

NE-Sen: Former Treasurer Shane Osborn (R), a decorated naval pilot who didn't seek a second term in 2010 to clear the way for Don Stenberg v6.0, is interested in a run.

KY-Sen: Bell-maker Matt Bevin (R) confirms his interest in a primary challenge to McConnell. As an aside, can we stop calling every random conservative a "Tea Party Favorite?" Bevin hasn't been around long enough to be anyone's favorite yet. Here is a bit more background on him as well.

MT-Sen: Ex-Gov. Brian Schweizter (D) posted PPP's poll from this week on his Facebook page. The survey showed Baucus in deep trouble and Schweitzer performing better in both the primary and general.

WATN: Former Sen. Pete Dominici (R-NM) had an affair and son with the daughter of fellow Sen. Paul Laxalt (R-NV) in the late 70s. The son, Adam Laxalt, currently works as an attorney in Las Vegas.

Governor:

NV-Gov, NV-LG, NV-4: Clark County Commission Chair Steve Soslak (D) is considering a run against Sandoval. But with Sandoval heavily favored for re-election, the big story in NV will be the race for LG. Incumbent Brian Krolicki (R) is termed out, and with Sandoval seen as likely to seek Reid's seat in 2016, the #2 race is likely to be priority #1 for both sides. Clark County Commissioner Tom Collins (D) is running, and State Sen. Barbara Cegavske (R-Las Vegas) is considering a bid. Cegavske is also considering a repeat bid for NV-4 against Steven Horsford (D) after losing the 2012 primary.

LA-Gov '15: State Rep. John Bel Edwards (D-Amite) will run for Governor in 2015, becoming the first candidate into what is expected to be a crowded jungle primary. Edwards, who is in State House Dem leadership, may be Dems' best candidate in the race, but he will face a number of strong Republicans.

PA-Gov: Ex-Rep. Joe Sestak (D) is thought to be taking a look at the Gubernatorial race, but remains mum on his plans for now.

MA-Gov: Consider the starting gun fired in this race, as Treasurer and pseudo-candidate Steve Grossman (D) throws his first jab, at pseudo-candidate Scott Brown's "pocket tweeting."

NJ-Gov, VA-Gov: Q has polls of both of this year's Gubernatorial races. In NJ, they find the Christie crushing Buono 62-25. In Virginia, Cuccinelli and McAuliffe are tied at 38. If Bolling runs as an Independent he takes slightly more from Cuccinelli but also hurts McAuliffe, giving the Democrat a 34-31 lead with the LG back at 13.

State & Local:

IN-Supt: First Wyoming, now Indiana - curttailing the powers of elected superintendents is becoming a trend. (And a positive one IMO - superintendents are specialized enough positions that they should really be appointed.) This time the target is Glenda Ritz (D), a voucher opponent who rode teachers' union backing to an upset over then-incumbent Tony Bennett (R) last year. The bill doesn't go nearly as far as Wyoming's though, which basically made the Superintendent a powerless office, but it does strip Ritz of her authority over the voucher program she opposes.

NM-AG: Albuquerque attorney Jason Marks (D) becomes the first candidate exploring the race for the seat of Gary King (D), who is running for Governor.

NYC-Mayor: A profile of outspoken billionaire mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis (R), who despite his wealth is considered a long-shot even in the GOP primary.

Boston-Mayor: City councilman at-large John Connolly (D-W. Roxbury) is considering a run, and says his decision will be independent of whether Mayor Tom Menino (D) retires or runs for a sixth term.

MI-LD-3: State Rep. John Olumba of Detroit has switched from Dem to Independent out of frustration with House Dem leadership. 

NJ-LD-1: Former Vineland Mayor Robert Romano left the GOP yesterday, feuling speculation that he may run for the legislature on the ticket of State Sen. Jeff Van Drew (D-Dennis), who is very popular despite his conservative district.

NYC-CD-31: Tuesday featured a special election to fill a black-majority council seat covering Far Rockaway and Laurelton in Queens with a surprising result. Black Dem Donovan Richards, the heavy favorite from his time as chief of staff to now-State Sen. James Sanders (D-Laurelton), leads Orthodox Jew Pesach Osina by just 26 votes. Recounts will go on for quite some time.

International:

Bulgaria: The Bulgarian government dissolved yesterday amid protests, triggering a new election earlier than the planned July date. The incumbent center-right GERB Party is favored to retain power, but the opposition Socialists have been gaining in recent polls.

Pope: Buzz is that an American Cardinal could be the next pope... just not the one everyone has been talking about, New York's Timothy Dolan. Instead, Boston's Sean O'Malley is now seen as a surprise front-runner.

shamlet :: Political Roundup for February 21, 2013
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Why run as a Democrat when Christie is likely to run historic margins?
I am admittedly unfamiliar with the local dynamics of NJ politics, so what's the context here? Long term GOP decline in the area?

24/M/Republican/Law Student/NC-04

Perhaps name recognition for their next race


42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.

[ Parent ]
NYTimes Article on Nixon's Southern Strategy
http://www.nytimes.com/package...

Found this on another forum.  Interesting read.

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat


wow
Hence the emerging Republican majority that will dominate American politics until the year 2004.

27, R, PA-07.

[ Parent ]
NE-Sen (Gov/LG/Treas et al)
I'm very surprised to see Shane Osborn showing interest at all, all reports I heard are that he didn't like politics or government at all (once elected) and had walked away from elected office for good. Could be a change of mind, but more likely it's just nice to be the topic of The Great Mentioner.

Marco Rubio 2016, please

One big reason why Osborn retired
was a breakup with his wife that unfortunately was made very public by her. She publicly accused him of spousal abuse, but never filed charges and later recanted the accusation and went into counseling. He then got custody of their children and when he said he wasn't going to run for re-election as State Treasurer, he cited the need to spend time raising them as the reason. I've never heard that he didn't like politics, but all I know is what was said publicly. He was often seen as a rising star in the party that would likely run for higher office someday, so if he has the desire to get back into politics and thinks he can handle the family issues, I think he would make a great candidate.

42, R, NE-1.

[ Parent ]
NJ-Sen: Menendez approval down
http://www.quinnipiac.edu/inst...

No idea why. It's all lies from right wing blogs.

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2


MN-6, MN-Sen?
Bachmann seems to have been awe fully quiet since her scare in November. My guess is that a consultant finally got to her ear and told her to tone it down a little bit. But there is a tiny chance that she is keeping her head down to take on Franken next year.

http://www.minnpost.com/dc-dis...

I am a Tom Rukavina Democrat.


Link is Broken
NT

Baker '14
R, MA-3


[ Parent ]
Rand does something I support 100%
http://politicalticker.blogs.c...

In this way at least, every member of congress should strive to be like Rand.

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat


For me, personally
I must say, that Rand Paul has been a huge surprise for me. He talks sense, something I didn't think he'd do as their "heir apparent" to his father. In fact, I seem to agree with him on a lot of things.

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
He definitely
Has a LOT more brains than his father.

25, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
He really sounds mainstream
He talks about foreign policy like a Republican with a libertarian bent, unlike his father who is far off the reservation.

I support the idea of returning the money in principle, but not if he's 1) short staffed and forcing his people to work a crazy amount 2) paying his people less than the going rate. Senators should be allocated a reasonable amount of money that shouldn't be so much they have to return anything.  

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2


[ Parent ]
Agreed!
What Rand is doing here is walking the walk. Returning over 20% of his allotted annual Senate office budget is a big deal. I would even be in favor of paying a members of Congress a bonus if they return a certain % of their office budget.

[ Parent ]
MN-8, MN-Gov 18
Mark Dayton's favorite Iron Ranger, Tony Sertich, now has a second high-level gig, in addition to being the IRRB chairman, he now sits on the Duluth Port Authority. Prior to taking over at the IRRB he was the state House majority leader, and speaker-presumptive before 2010 cost Democrats the majority for a term. Rick Nolan will be 75 when Congress convenes in 2019, and Sertich would be a logical successor to Nolan. That being said, Sertich may have his eyes on replacing Dayton, but he would face long odds in what certainly will be a crowded 2018 DFL field.

http://www.minnpost.com/politi...

I am a Tom Rukavina Democrat.


Shelby to vote for Hagel
"He's probably as good as we're going to get"

Ummm ... how about NOT getting him? Whatever happened to "most qualified person"?

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-...


German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


f him


25, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
This is probably his last term
He's almost 79 now and he's up in 2016.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
Also, only 15 GOPers signed letter asking for Hagel withdrawal
It's over.

24, MA-07, Rockefeller Republican. Visit me at http://twitter.com/polibeast

[ Parent ]
Headdesk ....
once again, Senate GOPers ... headdesk.

More Cruz, less Shelby, please.

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


[ Parent ]
At this point Hagel is so weakened
I kind of want him to be confirmed. It's the inverse of the Trent Lott praising Strom Thurmond incident. Lott had to move so far the other direction he eventually endorsed strong Affirmative Action programs on the Black Entertainment Network.

Hagel is going to go out of his way not upset the pro-Israel crowd, and will generally fly under the radar over the next few years. He'll be a terrible mouthpiece for the Obama Administration.

The only victory Dems can achieve from this is the narrative that the GOP blocked the President's SOD, and are endangering the nation. Why give them that point.

34, R, CO-1 (Degette)


[ Parent ]
Israel, war
women's and gay issues are largely secondary.  The SOD will be simply following Obama;s orders on all these types of issues.  
If Obama wants anti-Israel policies, his SOD will support them, same with the reverse.  It wouldn't matter if it were Chuck Hagel or someone else.

The real damage that Chuck Hagel can do is in cutting Pentagon spending.  On that issue, he is rather dangerous and reckless, and he will have wide latitude to do so.  Hagel could really castrate the military and defense, and I think he'd be much more able to do that than another SOD.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
Fischer for Hagel
Ahum? Deb?

http://hotair.com/archives/201...

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


[ Parent ]
Insane
Didn't he endorse Kerrey?

25, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
She's reading the tea leaves
There will be a number of Republicans who will vote for cloture that didn't last week. But, I really doubt she will actually vote for him once it passes cloture.  

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
Voting for cloture
Not for the nomination. This is what she said originally-no change in her position.

42, R, NE-1.

[ Parent ]
Quotes from news stories
Feb. 7 Omaha World-Herald: "Deb Fischer said Thursday that while she will vote against Chuck Hagel's nomination to be defense secretary, she has no plans to filibuster him ..."

Feb. 14 Lincoln Journal-Star: "Fischer said she expects to vote for cloture later, although she ultimately will vote against confirmation of Hagel"

Not sure why Hot Air acts like this was a surprise-she made her intentions clear before.

42, R, NE-1.


[ Parent ]
Don't know why you expected
much else.  Senators are going to give the benefit of the doubt for executive branch nominees.  Hagel is a terrible choice for this position in many ways, but that is something that was decided last November.

It doesn't help that the whole "Friends of Hamas" stuff was a hoax.  If you're going to make those kinds of charges, you better make sure that it is true.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
UT-4; Love speaking at CPAC
Aaron Blake‏@FixAaron

Mia Love, the much-touted GOP recruit who lost in Utah, will speak at CPAC.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


Also Sean Duffy


25, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
She's also in Colorado this weekend at a Leadership Forum
In Colorado Springs. So I'd say she's close to making it official that she's running again. Not an easy race by any means. She might want to do more events in Utah.

34, R, CO-1 (Degette)

[ Parent ]
Agree
How about mingling with the Utah GOP?

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
NV-Sen: Reid to seek re-election in '16
http://blogs.rgj.com/politics/...

Sandoval vs. Reid would be quite a battle.

33, R, IN-09


Yeaaaah, right.
I'll believe it when I see it.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
The most important race to defeat Reid in 2016, is the LG race in 2014
If we don't hold that seat, it will give Sandoval reason not to run against Reid.  

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
I'm sure Harry Reid is in the process of
forming a Sharron Angle for LG super pac as we speak.

[ Parent ]
Amen
nt

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
This far in advance all it means
is that Reid is uninterested in running for Governor in 14.

If we manage to take back the senate in '14, I'm thinking Reid won't enjoy being in the minority and will instead change his mind in '15 and retire in '16.


42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.


[ Parent ]
Reid for Governor?!?
I had never heard that rumor before. Why would he even consider giving up his SMLship (I srsly doubt the GOP's chances to capture the Senate in 2014 and I bet he does, too) for the Governor's mansion?

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
I was joking


42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.

[ Parent ]
PA Corruption Update
Joan Orie Melvin found guilty on 6 out of 7 corruption charges.

http://www.politicspa.com/brea...

Lifelong Republican, TX-17


SC-1
Reps. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) and Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.) are endorsing Larry Grooms in the #SC1 special election.

25, Male, R, NY-10

Duncan is
Mulvaney endorsed him previously. Gowdy is said to follow.

SC1-Charleston

[ Parent ]
Grooms seems like a true fiscon, and a loud one to boot.
Still, I could see him saying some troublesome things that will become soundbites, so I don't want him in Congress.

21, Male, Conservative Republican, TN-08 (home), VA-01 (college)

[ Parent ]
Phil Gingrey in for #GASEN
davecatanese ‏@davecatanese
. @RepPhilGingrey emailed a handful of Republicans today, telling them he's in for #GASEN, per a recipient.

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

Is it like that?
Broun < Gingrey < Price in terms of "being sane" and keeping that seat in GOP hands without much effort?

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
Kingston would probably be equal to Price,
maybe better in terms of his likelihood to win the general election.

21, Male, Conservative Republican, TN-08 (home), VA-01 (college)

[ Parent ]
Kingston is definitely our strongest candidate


25, Male, R, NY-10

[ Parent ]
Kingston, Price, or Handel
Would all make this very likely to safe R.

[ Parent ]
The field will narrow
I can't imagine someone polling 3rd or 4th in a primary wanting to give up a safe House seat

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

[ Parent ]
Don't understand
He'll be 72 by the time of the election  

Male, LA-01

Cassidy, Rounds, Ernst, Handel, Land for Senate!  


[ Parent ]
That's still enough for 2 Senate terms
He's not a power player in the house; I guess he just figures this is his last chance to try for the big time and if he loses he'll just retire. I imagine I'd have the same calculus in his position.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
"Strict" Photo-Only Voter ID passes Virginia State House...sent to McDonnell for signature
Starting with 2014 elections, still needs pre-clearance.

"Although the measure enjoys broad public support - including 57 percent of Democrats - it has been controversial, with Democratic and African-American leaders opposing the legislation," said Quinnipiac University Polling Institute assistant director Peter Brown.  "The measure has majority support from all demographic groups surveyed, including black voters by 66 - 34 percent."

http://www.dailypress.com/news...


TX-?; Eva Longoria wants to run for congress in TX, she's contacted the DCCC
http://www.nationalenquirer.co...

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

Too late
The ideal districts for her were TX-20 and TX-23.

[ Parent ]
Where in TX is she from? She's always been a Spurs fan, so San Antonio?
If that's the case she could primary Cong. Cuellar. Or perhaps run for Cong. Hinojosa's seat if he retires. They are both nearby, relatively speaking. As a celebrity who could throw millions into a race, anything could happen.  

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
Corpus Christi
so she really should have gone for TX-34 last year.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
RRH is now taking political reporting from the National Enquirer seriously?
They are one step BELOW the credibility of random bloggers. Unless a National Enquirer story has a picture with a pol on a boat named Monkey Business I would dismiss it as random page filler nonsense.

[ Parent ]
Right, they only publish ridiculous stuff
like John Edwards having a love child with a staffer. Absurd made-up claptrap.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Why not Governor
I havnt' heard any names for the Dems there yet

Baker '14
R, MA-3


[ Parent ]
Qualifications
Beyond having a restaurant that went bankrupt, what are her qualifications to be a Congresswoman?

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
You weren't blown away by her speech at the DNC?


29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
Yawn
I did not watch much of the conventions honestly.  Again what accomplishments does she bring to the table to warrant my attention?

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
I was being sarcastic.


29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
Not much that I can think of
although the House has plenty of people who started with basically no resume.  Its governor or Senate that usually requires some previous political expertise or experience.

Also, if she wants to get into Congress her best bet is the El-Paso based 16th.  She's not winning a Democratic primary against an Incumbent Hispanic Democrat in South Texas (where they like them relatively Moderate and not Hollywood-style Liberal), and the 16th is probably the easiest place to parachute into, with a freshman white Congressman representing an overwhelmingly Hispanic district.  She could conceivably consolidate the "We want a Hispanic" vote.

But I doubt she takes the plunge anywhere.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-14

Liberals dream things that never were and ask why not.  Conservatives shout back "Because it won't work"


[ Parent ]
SC-Gov/Sen; Haley and Graham rebound in new survey, looking safe against a primary challenge
http://www.greenvilleonline.co...

Haley: 44% approval, 67% approval amongst Republicans/Independents (39% disapprove, 16% of Republicans/Independents).

Graham: 48% approval, 72% approval amongst Republicans/Independents.

Scott: 54% approval/18% disapprove.

Obama: 47% approve/45% disapprove.

The Obama numbers suggest that the sample may be too Democratic, but it does indicate that Haley and Graham have improved since their last survey.  

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


LA-Gov
Not surprised. He's pretty much been the only candidate that I thought was certain to run for the Dems. I'm surprised he's announcing ahead of the legislative session and some state Dems may be upset he is announcing ahead of Landrieu's re-elect. Unless Mitch runs, he's probably as good a realistic possibility they have. Sen. Eric LaFleur will also likely look at it  

Male, LA-01

Cassidy, Rounds, Ernst, Handel, Land for Senate!  


SD-Sen; Johnson retirement more likely
http://www.argusleader.com/vie...

It's funny how there are Democrats that think the younger Johnson or SHS - a former congresswoman that lost to a political newcomer and then became a lobbyist - would have a shot against a former governor with 60% approval in a red state.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


They have a shot
not a particularly good one, but either could win in a neutralish year if Rounds runs a stinky campaign.

This is a Lean R race with Johnson and a borderline Lean-Likely without - i.e. one we should pick up but not a slam-dunk.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
That's what I'm concerned about
It has the ring of WI-2012 to some extent. Everyone was "Yay, Thompson" just to stand there, eyes wide open when the time for actual campaigning came around.

I think SHS would have a shot, but she doesn't have Heitkamp-quality - thankfully.

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


[ Parent ]
I see big differences between Thompson and Rounds
Thompson was last on the ballot in 1998 and had shown a reluctance to run in the past, so one could kind of expect that maybe he wouldn't run a great campaign. Rounds on the other hand was last on the ballot much more recently in 2006 and this is his first chance to run for Senate and the fact that he announced so early shows he is all in and there shouldn't be any question about him running a strong campaign.

42, R, NE-1.

[ Parent ]
Thompson
Let's not forget that he lost by 5% and Romney lost by 7%. Only 9 Republicans had smaller margins than Romney and those included 5 incumbents, Linda Lingle, Heather Wilson, and Linda McMahon. Even if he beat Romney by as much as Wilson or McMahon did he wouldn't have won. Had he run in a state like Arizona he likely wouldn't have had the nail biter Jeff Flake did.

I think lumping Thompson in with Berg, Rehberg, or Akin is unfair.  

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2


[ Parent ]
I get your point
but Thompson also was running against someone who makes Obama look like a conservative in comparison.  Tammy Baldwin is one of the five most left-wing senators in the last decade, and would be too liberal for Vermont.  Berg and Rehberg were running against much more popular Dems.

Christie 2016  

[ Parent ]
How Is Baldwin
More liberal than Sanders or Leahy?  How is she more liberal than Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar?

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat

[ Parent ]
I definitely agree with you on Sanders.
The guy is an admitted socialist (then again, so are you).

21, Male, Conservative Republican, TN-08 (home), VA-01 (college)

[ Parent ]
Well
A nonpartisan analysis by Voteview.com shows that Baldwin's record since 1999 has been more liberal than that of Pelosi, the San Francisco Democrat frequently vilified as extreme by Republicans. Baldwin also has ranked as more liberal than all other members of the state's delegation in the House over the period.

Baldwin ranks as the 19th most liberal member of Congress. Pelosi ranked 43rd, according to Voteview.


The Journal Sentinel used Voteview's data a year ago and in its own analysis found that Baldwin had the most liberal congressional voting record over the last 40 years in the Wisconsin delegation. She was more liberal than Sen. William Proxmire, Rep. Gwen Moore, Sen. Russ Feingold and Rep. Bob Kastenmeier, the analysis found.

The National Journal also ranks the voting records of members of Congress and has made comparable findings.

"There is no doubt that Baldwin is in the top 5% or so of members of Congress in terms of her liberal scores," said David Canon, a University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist

http://www.jsonline.com/news/s...

Of your list, only Sanders could be considered to be more liberal than Baldwin.  And Sanders was moderate on  gun control.  Even Al Franken initially supported the Iraq War.  Baldwin is moderate on nothing.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
Baldwin's DW Nominate
score from the House would make her the most liberal current senator based on voting record.

Feingold and the older Glen Taylor, Wayne Morse, James Abourezk, and Paul Wellstone all come in to her left

Age 21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (college)
politicohen.com.
Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal but not progressive.  For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.

Berkeley Class of 2015.


[ Parent ]
Evidence?
Sherrod Brown is perceived as too left wing for Ohio. Frankly, I haven't seen much evidence to show that someone we perceive as too left wing is going to do poorly at the polls. I'm sure people at DKE were certain that Johnson was too conservative for Wisconsin to win in 2010.  

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

[ Parent ]
Johnson
I've been wondering about his chances for reelection 2016. He hasn't had any major gaffes, but he'll be running in a purple to light blue state in a presidential year.

21, Male, Conservative Republican, TN-08 (home), VA-01 (college)

[ Parent ]
Against anyone but Rounds
they would have an outside shot.  This race is Likely R.  Rounds would have to do more than run a bad campaign to lose this race.

Christie 2016  

[ Parent ]
Shoddy Reporting
"The party's prospects of holding the Senate majority have already been shaken by the recent retirement announcements of Sens. Tom Harkin of Iowa and Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, which have thrown presumably safe Democratic seats into the toss-up column."

Not even Jay Rockefeller thought he was safe.

It's so frustrating when journalists omit or distort important details in order to construct an easy, cookie-cutter narrative. They can convincingly argue that Democrats are vulnerable without bending the truth. All they have to know is the number 7. That's the number of Romney seats Democrats have to defend, and that's the difference between the total number of Democrats up this cycle (21) and Republicans(14).  

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
True, but
the 2012 cycle showed that "gettable" seats can get "un-gettable" quite quickly.

I am nowhere near certain that LA, NC, AR will flip - it depends on whom the GOP fields and especially in NC, there just doesn't seem to be "THE" strongest candidate floating around.  

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


[ Parent ]
However
Jay Rockefeller would have been tougher to defeat, even with his liberal anti-coal record than any Democrat newcomer in this race.  The reason is that WV depends so much on pork and incumbency, and that would have been his trump card.

With Rockefeller's retirement, this race went from Tossup to Likely R, unless Capito loses the primary.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
I'd hesitate
to call it Likely R before learning who Democrats run.

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat

[ Parent ]
Agree
Rahall still can run, but its unlikely he will at this point.  I suspect he would be the most interesting candidate for the Democrats.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
2012 showed us that incumbent Democrats are pretty safe
The GOP failed to beat incumbents in Missouri and Montana, who should've been very vulnerable. So I'd put Rockefeller in the tough to beat category.

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

[ Parent ]
It doesn't matter
whom the Dems nominate.  They don't have anyone like Manchin in the state.  Nor will a bad campaign be sufficient to defeat Capito (except maybe in the primary).  Capito would have to have a scandal or a major blunder to lose the general to anyone that the Dems could put up in West Virginia.

That's the definition of Likely R.  I see a better chance that Capito loses a competitive primary than lose the general.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
A Republican hasn't won a senate seat in West Virginia since 1942
The GOP lost a lot of winnable seats the last two cycles. It's understandable some of us are hesitant to think of this as a slam dunk.

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

[ Parent ]
1956
1942 was the last time we won a 6-year term.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
WY-Sen; Enzi won't decide until March of 2014, the filing deadline is May 30th
http://www.kgwn.tv/story/21291...
http://soswy.state.wy.us/Elect...

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

Makes Sense
pretty much assures Lummis gets it. The big question for Meyer is whether she goes up against Cheney for the House or waits for the next Gov race.

Meyer might want to go for SoS as that would put her (literally and figuratively) next in line for the Governorship.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
Liz Cheney
I'd love to see Liz Cheney as US Senator

[ Parent ]
Same here
nt

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
Yup
A pro-gay marriage neocon? Sign me up, baby.

24, MA-07, Rockefeller Republican. Visit me at http://twitter.com/polibeast

[ Parent ]
DSCC beats NRSC by $2.7m
Meh ... I wish it'd be the other way round ...

http://thehill.com/blogs/ballo...

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


Huntsman Endorses Marriage Equality
http://www.theamericanconserva...

He approaches this issue from a conservative lens in much the same way that David Brooks did in an NYT column back in 2002

Based on his machinations, I bet that Huntsman has decided that the GOP base is currently implacable and that he has no choice but to wait until 2020

Ryan/Kasich 2016


or he wants to go the Americans Elect route in 2016


Age 21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (college)
politicohen.com.
Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal but not progressive.  For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.

Berkeley Class of 2015.


[ Parent ]
I support gay marriage
but still feel its states rights issues and I think way too many gays have open marriages ( I live in NYC and knows its very true).

[ Parent ]
I'm not for gay marriage
but I do think the party needs to tolerate both sides on this issue.  

We should support allowing states to make the decision on this issue.
No more endorsing things like the Federal Marriage Amendment, which has no chance to ever pass.    No more Santorum-like rhetoric from anybody prominent in the party.  And we need to accept the Supreme Court's  if/when they strike down DOMA.  
I predict that social conservatives and evangelicals won't defect if the GOP does this.    


Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
Let's be careful of using "marriage equality"
It's strictly gay-marriage he supports, whereas "marriage equality" which a lot on the left like to use, ecompases a broader term, than just gay-marriage.

22, Conservative, NC-02 (SC-04 college) Matt 6:25-34    

[ Parent ]
What's the difference
I just assumed that "marriage equality"="gay marriage", just that the former is a better sounding term that the pro-gay side uses.  

Christie 2016  

[ Parent ]
Marriage Equality
Ultimate Marriage Equality would allow Same Sex Marriage, Opposite Sex Marriage and Trans Marriage.  The easiest way to do this is simply making Marriage gender neutral and thats what most Marriage Equality supporters would like to see.

33/M/D/NY-01 DKE:Socks The Cat

[ Parent ]
that's in effect the same as what Huntsman supports
Although I'd argue full marriage equality includes polygamy, the term marriage equality in today's English means same sex marriage being allowed.

Age 21, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (college)
politicohen.com.
Idiosyncratic, pro-establishment. Liberal but not progressive.  For the poor, the children, the planet, and the rule of law.

Berkeley Class of 2015.


[ Parent ]
math
1 + 1 = 2

1 + 2 = 3

2 ≠ 3

See how easy that was to settle?

Democrat, NC-11


[ Parent ]
So the definition of marriage can change in one case, but not the other?
Can't three or more people love each other as much as two people?

Now, I'm personally in favor of completely privatizing marriage, as government has no business being involved. And frankly, why should government give sexual relationships more clout than platonic ones? However, the inconsistency on the left regarding this issue is pretty alarming.

Before I get blamed for going too much info policy, I will add that the GOP should adopt a less government approach on social issues, in addition to the federalism approach. Considering the views the under thirty crowd have regarding these issues, the social right needs to adapt or they may get bulldozed over in the near future.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


[ Parent ]
Of course it can
Marriage is a personal, social, and legal contract. The social and legal part of it can be changed as society and the government sees fit.

There's nothing inconsistent about saying that gays should not be discriminated against while also saying that polygamy should not be legally sanctioned. That includes same-sex polygamy. Oh, hmm..

The government has a strong interest in promoting the institution of marriage, not least for the protection of children.

Anyone who wants to have a "private" marriage can do so right now. It's called "shacking up" and you can even exchange vows while you sign the lease. No one will force you to file a marriage license.

Sex is not a requirement for marriage in the U.S.

Democrat, NC-11


[ Parent ]
The fact that anyone can come up with any variety of reasons for why government can enforce marriage
Is a good reason why government shouldn't be involved. Why give tax breaks to a married couple and not two sisters caring for one of their kids under one roof?

Plus, you say that marriage isn't about sex, yet you also say that gays are currently discriminated against. Well, the last time I checked a homosexual can marry someone of the opposite sex. So, it's either about sex or there is discrimination, not both.

And if society changes the law for gays and not polygamists than it discriminates against them. However, if government continues to back any form of marriage with certain advantages, than it continues to discriminate against everyone that isn't married.  

The problem with the left is that every solution is government oriented or punitive towards the private sector. There isn't one driven by less government or pushing for private sector solutions.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


[ Parent ]
+1,000
I've been using similar arguements for years.

21, Male, Conservative Republican, TN-08 (home), VA-01 (college)

[ Parent ]
We are free to disagree
so far as I'm concerned, just don't call me inconsistent...

Why give tax breaks to a married couple and not two sisters caring for one of their kids under one roof?

I assume both sisters are working and neither sister is supporting over 50% of the other sister's expenses? Because, if so, then one sister can file as head-of-household and claim the other as a dependent.

Regardless, the government can certainly give a tax break to two sisters caring for one of their kids under one roof. In fact, it can put it that way right on the IRS form and call it the Two Sisters Caring For One Of Their Kids Under One Roof Credit.

These are independent policy questions. If you think the government should enact a TSCFOOTKUOR Credit then write your congressperson.

Plus, you say that marriage isn't about sex, yet you also say that gays are currently discriminated against. Well, the last time I checked a homosexual can marry someone of the opposite sex. So, it's either about sex or there is discrimination, not both.

It's about identity and being able to marry the person whom you actually want to marry.

If you really need the analogy, then anti-miscegenation laws are what you're looking for. Before they were struck down, any person could marry someone of the same race. They were struck down because of discrimination, not because of sex.

And if society changes the law for gays and not polygamists than it discriminates against them.

Yes, and society has a rational basis for doing so, just like it has a rational basis for discriminating against ten-year-olds who want to get married.

However, if government continues to back any form of marriage with certain advantages, then it continues to discriminate against everyone that isn't married.

If society and the government decide that marriage is not an institution that should be promoted, then it is free to do so. Our society has not made that decision. If you think it should, then write your congressperson.

The problem with the left is that every solution is government oriented or punitive towards the private sector. There isn't one driven by less government or pushing for private sector solutions.

The problem with the right is that you want to burn the village to save it. You are so determined not to be even indirectly associated with conferring recognition on same-sex marriage, that you would rather eliminate all government recognition of marriage.

The 'privatization' of marriage would render it nothing more than a meaningless statement of affection with no privileges, responsibilities, or consequences beyond your circle of acquaintances.

If that's what you think marriage should be, then write your congressperson.

Democrat, NC-11


[ Parent ]
Since this is going too much into policy, I won't answer everything you wrote
But, I will say that if marriage was privatized, there would be consequences. Marriage is after all a contract. The agreements within that contract would be binding in a court of law just like two people who go into business with one another.

And no one is saying government doesn't have a role to play. What I'm saying is that governments role is too intrusive and discriminatory. A free society should be equal to all, not to a subset of the population.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3


[ Parent ]
OK
How is that different from a government standpoint than what we have right now? A civil marriage license is basically nothing more than a bundle of legal privileges and obligations handed over in one simple step. What exactly is the point of requiring people to pay a lawyer to write up a contract that does what a marriage license already does? Or, alternatively, if said contract is a standardized form, then I fail to see what makes it any different than a marriage license, except I guess it'd be a lot longer if it includes all the fine print.

If the true basis for your argument is that the government should not discriminate against single people by attaching benefits to marriage, then I think that's a perfectly valid argument. Nonetheless, that is not a decision our society has made nor is it one that a majority agrees with.

Democrat, NC-11


[ Parent ]
The difference is one is allowing the private sector to run its course
And the other is government dictating the principles of the contract. If government stepped aside, there wouldn't be any form of discriminaton, in relation to marriage.

29/Male/Married/Father of One/Republican/CA-3

[ Parent ]
In that case
I may have some policy issues with how it would work in practice, but I have no principled objection to the basic idea. I certainly don't think that's where we're headed, but I now understand your position and think you have a valid argument.

By the way, I didn't really mean to veer so much into policy discussion, but the one thing I despise is being called inconsistent!

Democrat, NC-11


[ Parent ]
Who'd have thunk it
A married Republican arguing that marriage should be privatized because it is unfair to single people, and a Democrat arguing that
"The government has a strong interest in promoting the institution of marriage, not least for the protection of children."

I might add, the latter sentiment is the primary legal argument that backers of traditional marriage are making for why same-sex couples should not be allowed to be married.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
How about the seperation of marriage and state
I'd rather see the government get out of marriage altogether. I can not support gay marriage, but I can support leaving that to the churches as marriage is a religious institution.  

MI-08 - Chairman - Livingston County Republican Party Since 2013 - Opinions are my own and not that of LCRP.  

[ Parent ]
this appears to be my Dad's position; at least with regard to the Feds
More precisely, Dad's position (he lives in Georgia) is

Let each state decide weather or not to recognize it; and for federal purposes, if the state they are living in consider them married, they are for federal purposes; but if the state doesn't they aren't (for federal purposes).

Dad just hates it when courts step into this issue instead of leaving it to the states voters & legislatures.

As far as I can tell, dad doesn't have a strong position for the Georgia legislature itself on the issue; he's much more interested in Georgia balancing the budget and keeping state taxes low.

42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.


[ Parent ]
I expect that your dad's position
Let each state decide weather or not to recognize it; and for federal purposes, if the state they are living in consider them married, they are for federal purposes; but if the state doesn't they aren't (for federal purposes).

will be what happens if/when DOMA is rejected by the Supreme Court.  Of course, your dad won't like that a court did it...
The problem is if a same-sex couple goes to Massachusetts and gets married but then comes to Georgia and demands federal recognition.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
It's more things like Iowa & California state supreme court that upset Dad
In that year, there is no way the Iowa legislature would have legalized SSM.
And the California voters did pass prop 8.

Dad's gotten to that federal portion of DOMA is bad law and wouldn't mind so much if that's what US supreme court does; but he wouldn't want them instantly making SSM legal in all 50 states.

Many people with a partner (both same sex and different gender) with two incomes would just as soon not have federal recognition at all. (Marriage penalty when both spouses work.) It's often only their health insurance company that they want to recognize it, which appears to be state-based rather than federal.

42 Male Republican, Maryland Heights, MO (MO-2). Previously lived in both Memphis and Nashville.


[ Parent ]
The Supreme Court won't
make SSM legal in all 50 states, that I'm sure of.  Even if Justice Kennedy wants to go there as his last legacy (which I doubt), I suspect that some of the Court's liberals would not agree due to a political backlash.

Regarding the health insurance issue, I think that this administration will try to force such recognition to the extent he can using Obamacare regulations.  DOMA prevents him from doing so right now.  

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
What the Supreme Court will do on SSM
I agree that it is not likely that the SC will find a constitutional basis for legalizing SSM in all 50 states. However, I think it likely that the SC will rule that the Fed Gov't can't deny Fed benefits in states that legalize SSM; I think the 10th and 14 Amendments will be used in that decision. I also think the High Court will strike down the Calif. ban on SSM, using the argument that there was no "rational basis" for singling out a particular group and taking away legal rights they already had along with others (equal protection of the laws); I think a similar argument was used a number of years ago in a case dealing with a referendum question on Gay Rights in Colorado.

[ Parent ]
Well
I think DOMA will go down, and I expect both Roberts and Kennedy to join that decision.

On the California case, I suspect the Court does one of the following:

1.Rules that the defenders of Prop 8 do not have standing to appeal (which would let the district court ruling stand)

2. Affirm the 9th Circuit based on Romer v Evans (1996), and the "animus" standard.  

3. They could go slightly further and rule that once a state has given same-sex couples rights, it cannot be taken away by referendum.    

4. Rule that SSM is fundamentally no different than civil unions, and if the latter is permitted, then it is unconstitutional to not permit the former.

5. I think there is a small chance that they will go further and rule that all anti-SSM bans by referenda are due to "animus" and are invalid.  Basically saying that it is not constitutional to amend state constitutions to ban SSM due to "animus" against gays, while not ruling that there is a fundamental right to SSM.  This could have a lot of ripple effects, including blue metro counties in red states permitting SSM.    

How far they will go will depend of Justice Kennedy.  However, if Kennedy for some reason decides to go "all the way" and declare a right to SSM, I think some of the liberal justices will block it for political reasons.

Christie 2016  


[ Parent ]
John Thune Not Running
For President Ever?

http://atr.rollcall.com/thune-...


PA-Gov: McCord not happy with Schwartz?
http://www.philly.com/philly/n...

28, Republican, PA-6

Adam Paul Laxalt
Could he run for any statewide office in the future? Maybe as LG or AG? From what I have read, he's a vocal conservative, and his surname is familiar to many Nevadans.  

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