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Political Roundup for February 13, 2013

by: shamlet

Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 07:00:00 AM EST


Are you thirsty for more news? Well, take a big sip from today's roundup!

Congress:

MA-Sen: Former Navy SEAL, Obama/Khazei donor, and Cohasset selectman candidate Gabriel Gomez (R) announced his candidacy with a web video yesterday. Gomez is backed by most of the Mass. GOP establishment (including scoring Kerry Healey's endorsement). He faces a primary with State Rep. Dan Winslow of Norfolk, and potentially others.

More MA-Sen: The R field in this race beats even your average college student in tems of proclivity to procrastinate... Former US Attorney Michael Sullivan (R) will make a decision by Thursday. Meanwhile, State Sen. Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) is still considering a bid and has no timetable for an announcement of his intentions.

IA-Sen: Rep. Steve King (R) is moving closer to a Senate bid. Expect this nomination to come down to a one-on-one meeting between him and fellow Congressman Tom Latham.

NJ-Sen '18: Drip, drip, drip... Menendez might have flown on Dr. Melgen's private jet another time, in 2008. This alleged trip was not reported and would be in addition to the 3 trips he reimbursed Melgen for with his life savings.

SC-1: Businessman Martin Skelly (D) has dropped his bid, leaving Steven Colbert's sister Elizabeth Colbert-Busch as the presumptive D nominee. Colbert-Busch is likely to face an uphill fight against whoever emerges from the R primary and runoff.

Governor:

AR-Gov: Two-time ('90 & '94) R nominee Sheffield Nelson is considering a third bid for the Governor's Mansion. Nelson, a former natural gas executive, is considering a run as a Republican or an Independent. 

More AR-Gov: ex-Rep. Mike Ross (D) is apparently reversing his previous 'no' on this race. According to a local reporter, he is "90% in", potentially giving Dems a much stronger candidate than their current front-runner, ex-LG Bill Halter.

Even More AR-Gov: LG Mark Darr (R) has ruled out a bid for Governor and endorsed presumptive candidate Asa Hutchinson. Darr is exploring a run for Senate against Pryor, but has left the door open to run for re-election instead.

NJ-Gov: Presumptive D nominee Barbara Buono was in a minor car accident yesterday in Somerset County. The State Senator was not wearing a seatbelt.

More NJ-Gov: Monmouth and Rutgers find the same thing in this race; both have Christie up 42 points on Buono and topping 60%. I'll curb my enthusiasm for now, but don't be surprised if this race shifts to Safe R at our next gubernatorial recap next month.

FL-Gov: 2010 D nominee Alex Sink is undecided about another bid in 2014. From my personal reading between the lines she doesn't sound too enthusiastic.

MI-Gov: ex-Rep. Mark Schauer (D) says he will decide on a run for Governor in the next few weeks.

State & Local:

KS-Ins. Comm.: Brownback admin official Aaron Jack has resigned his post to "pursue opportunities in the private sector". Jack was in the opening stages of mounting a primary bid against incumbent Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger (R); it's unclear whether he still intends to pursue the race.

KS-SoS: Businessman Randy Rolston (D) is running against SoS and noted immigration hardliner Kris Kobach (R). Rolston has seeded his campaign with $200K of his own cash; For his part, Kobach says he is seeking re-election.

CO-AG: Ex-Adams County DA Don Quick (D) becomes the first candidate to announce a bid for the seat of termed-out John Suthers (R). Quick is likely the front-runner for the D nod. 

RI-SoS: A bit of an old story that's slipped our news net, but noteworthy nontheless: Wealthy Newport businessman Guillaume de Ramel (D), who narrowly lost to current incumbent Ralph Mollis (D) in the 2006 primary, is mounting another bid in 2014, when Mollis is termed out.

NE-LG: Ex-State Sen. Tony Fulton (R-Lincoln) is interested in replacing Rick Sheehy (R) as interim LG; the article also has some other possibilities rumored to be on Heineman's short list.

NYS-Comp.: Client #9 may be looking to have a lot more numbers in his life... Elliot Spitzer is rumored to be looking at a political comeback in the form of a primary challenge to incumbent Tom DiNapoli (D), who has few qualifications for the office other than his closeness to Sheldon Silver. 

SC-LG, SC-Comp., SC-Supt: These 3 Republican incumbents, LG Glenn McConnell, Comptroller Richard Eckstrom, and Superintendent Mick Zais, may face primary challenges and/or retire; here's a good Great Mentioner piece. The Superintendent post is likely to be the only SC statewide race (besides Governor) seriously contested by Dems.

CA-Long Beach-Mayor: Damon Dunn, the 2010 R nominee for SoS, has become an Independent, and is now running in the nonpartisan mayor's race. 

MN-LD-14A; MN-LD-19A: Two holds in Minnesota House special elections; Republicans hold 14A and Dems hold 19A.

shamlet :: Political Roundup for February 13, 2013
Tags: (All Tags)
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What is the PVI of the MN districts.
Thanks shamlet for mining local news for tidbits. No one better!  

25, Male, R, NY-10

PVIs
14A, the Republican Hold is R+4, a Romney district 50-48, and is traditionally more Republican down ballot with Republicans winning iterations of this seat back to when it was first drawn in 94, including in 06 08 and 12.

19A, the Democratic Hold is an Even district and 53% Obama 2012. However this district is marginally more Democratic down ballot. It wouldn't have been a 17 point drubbing without Quist, but no local Republican could have kept it to single digits.

I am a Tom Rukavina Democrat.


[ Parent ]
Odds of him running
I am not convinced he will retire at this point, but what are the odds of him running again.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
My guess is 1 in 4
i.e. if he and the NJDP are pissed enough at Booker to circle the wagons again as in '08.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
I think a lot depends on what happens with Menendez
If there are 2 Senate seats up for election in NJ in 2014 than it increases the likelyhood that Lautenberg runs for re-election.

[ Parent ]
Ben Carlson
http://www.nationaljournal.com...

I have never heard of this guy, but I could see why he is getting buzz.

28, Republican, PA-6


Ben Carson
He's impressive. There was a flimsy article at HotAir that wanted him to move from Maryland to Virginia to run against Warner, since MD seems to be out of reach for the GOP. I would like to see him run for something realistic too, I just don't know if there is anything realistic for him at this point.

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

[ Parent ]
Carson
is probably the only Republican that would have an even money or better shot of winning in Maryland nowadays. If he wanted to be Governor he probably could win against the current field.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
VP Pick
I can't see him getting #1, as I doubt he's willing to take years away from medicine just to campaign. But he could be a very interesting VP selection.

Carson is almost as big a local hero in Baltimore as Ray Lewis or Cal Ripken, and he has been politically connected before somewhat... rumor was Ehrlich begged him to join his ticket as LG all three times but Carson refused.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
VP or HHS pick
A VP would be good, but I worry that since he hasn't been involved in politics, he has little knowledge of foreign policy.  I'm not saying he is at Herman Cain's level, but any gaffe would draw immediate comparisons in the media.  If he started at HHS and then rose from there, it would give him for political credentials and allow him to sit in on foreign policy meetings.

33, R, IN-09

[ Parent ]
HHS or Surgeon General might be his best way into politics
winning in MD is really tough as is carpet bagging to VA to run which is a shame because Dr. Carson has the potential to be a really good candidate. HHS might be a really important and prominent cabinet position now that the Fed Govt has taken over healthcare in this country. Any future GOP Sec of HHS might just be the point person in charge of rolling back Obamacare.  

[ Parent ]
Okay, folks
this is totally unfair to Rubio, I know, but this video is hilarious. Mostly because of the music choice, I think.

http://deadspin.com/5983866/le...


Zuckerberg fundraiser for Christie brings up questions about his potential in Silicon Valley
http://www.sfgate.com/politics...

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

People want a politician who can get stuff done
Seeing him tour his state after Sandy and secure Obama's help shows he cares about the people and not about politics, even if it pisses off the punditry on the right. He's going to be very strong in 2016. As an aside, I also suspect the constant harping about his weight by his opponents is misguided when you consider how many Americans are overweight or obese. It isn't an easy subject and a lot of them are going to identify with Christie for being constantly harangued.  

Libertarian-R New MA-5.  

[ Parent ]
Blunt thinks GOP has votes to delay Hagel nomination
http://www.politico.com/story/...

At this point, I'm skeptical Hagel has any GOP ayes beyond the two who've already declared. Even Murkowski seems like a long-shot.

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


Well
McCain, Cochran and Johanns plus all Democrats is 58, so if they really can't wrangle 2 more just against a filibuster then you are right.  I would think if that was true they would withdraw his nomination however.

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

[ Parent ]
McCain's been wavering on the prospect of a filibuster
It wouldn't surprise me if Graham and Ayotte can sway him in their direction.

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

[ Parent ]
Graham took McCain's position the other day


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

[ Parent ]
I think Hagel's refusal to turnover finacial info
could be the key to the fillabuster. If the Senate GOP makes Hagel's refusal to release who paid him speaking fees the reason why they are fillabustering him than I think they can delay his nomination. All they have to say is we want to see who paid him speaking fees and until he does we dont think he should get a vote because the Senate does not have all the information it needs to make a proper informed decision. I even McCain who cares about process and Cochran and Johanns who have stated they will vote for Hagel would go along with the fillabuster if its about turing over finacial disclosure docs.

[ Parent ]
Meet Todd Akin the pundit, who doesn't rule out a comeback
http://thehill.com/homenews/ca...

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

Nassau CE
Suozzi coming back. http://www.nationaljournal.com...

Likely D IMO; Massive buyer's remorse from 2009.

R - MD-7


I was surprised Suozzi lost in 09
I don't live in Nassau but have friends that do and got a generally favorable vibe about his tenure. He was pretty fiscally conservative and unlike other officials in NY; didn't turn his office into a soapbox for his pet peeves.  

The Rs have not done well with county finances and there's been a debacle with the NHL team bailing and moving to Brooklyn. The old Coliseum is now a money pit and the referendum to replace it went down in flames as folks wanted the team to build a new arena.  


[ Parent ]
Yes
Suozzi will likely win it back. Mangano is not very popular and hasn't been for a while.

Suozzi and Bellone give Democrats a decent bench for when Bishop and King retire.  

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


[ Parent ]
Although
I should add Bellone doesn't live in ny-01 if i recall correctly that might not be realistic.  

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

[ Parent ]
Neither Bellone or Brookhaven Supervisor Romaine survive Nemo IMO
Storm response has been miserable. They will be "Byrned" in the next election over it.  

[ Parent ]
Depends who you talk to I guess
All the anger I've heard has been directed towards the towns not Bellone.  

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

[ Parent ]
2009 was a huge missed opportunity for Nassau GOP
No one thought Suozzi could lose so instead of getting a serious challenger he got Mangano a RINO GOP Machine hack who was running to be the sacraficial lamb. Instead a GOP wave hit and washed him (and Comptroller George Maragos) into office. Instead of being an instrument of reform and enacting real conservative solutions to Nassau's many finacial problems the new RINO in charge basically did whatever the County Machine wanted and made a bad situation worst. The contrast between how Mangano has preformed as COE and Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino (who was also unexpectedly elected in the '09 wave) is quite stark.

[ Parent ]
Patronage jobs
They still play a large part in the Nassau Republican party, and is one of the major reasons why they control county executive, comptroller, county legislature, complete control of 2/3 townships.

Walker/Martinez 2016

[ Parent ]
Tossup!
How anyone can say this is likely D is beyond me. This is a pure swing county and both sides will be well funded. A recent poll in January had Mangano above 50%.

And because of the nice legislative redistricting map that is about to pass, Republicans will control the county legislature for the next decade.

Walker/Martinez 2016


[ Parent ]
Will Andy Cuomo intervene?
His nonaggression pact on the Senate angered Dems; he may need to go all in to a major local election to make nice. Although Suozzi is hardly a Netroots type fave  

[ Parent ]
the NYGop dead
The fact we couldn't even get some multi millionaire to run against Gillibrand in 2010 speaks heavy columns.  We have no bench to run for anything.

[ Parent ]
NYGOP is dead
but not Nassau GOP two separate entities.

Walker/Martinez 2016

[ Parent ]
Actually, a multi-millionaire did run against Gillibrand in 2010
His name was David Malpass, he worked in the Reagan administration, garnered endorsements from both Pataki and Giuliani and seemed like an all-around terrific candidate. Of course, the Conservative Party endorsed washed-up loser Joe DioGuardi and the same upstate Republicans who later gave us the even more dismal Wendy Long followed suit. Statewide, for the most part, the NYS GOP has been hijacked by Paladino supporters in Western New York and social conservatives. The socially moderate downstate GOPers don't seem to show up in primaries anymore. Just look at poor Bob Turner, who was the Malpass of his race. Heck, Bruce Blakeman and George Maragos were practically the same candidate, too!

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

[ Parent ]
Doubt it
No one likes Suozzi, he's arrogant. He's not a team player, at least for the democrats. The only reason he's running is because of his ego and his 1 million campaign account ( that you can also say he has because of his ego, thinking he was safe the last time and not spending it ).

Walker/Martinez 2016

[ Parent ]
And the county finances are a mess
Look, all things considered a R still wins Nassau, but Suozzi can argue that things went south after he lost  

[ Parent ]
You can argue that
and they can argue that he's the one who caused it and we're cleaning up his mess.

I don't like Mangano, but I'll still vote for him. I think Suozzi is a great candidate, but I could never bring myself to go into the D column.

Walker/Martinez 2016


[ Parent ]
The best thing that could happen here is a GOP tea party type primary challenge
to Mangano. But the Nassau GOP machine controls things so thoroughly that not only would it probably not succeed the Conservative Party would probably also endorse the less conservative statist Mangano.  

[ Parent ]
If you remember
the conservative party leader the last time was a Suozzi hack and ran its own candidate to split the vote. Mangano got the tax revolt line and squeaked by. The leader got replaced with a GOP loyalist.

Also, that brings another reason as to why Mangano wasn't a fluke. If he had the conservative party endorsement the last time he would of won by a comfortable margin. He'll have it this time.

Walker/Martinez 2016


[ Parent ]
Exactly!
In NYS even the so-called "Conservative" Party's line is for sale to the highest bidder for a few patronage jobs.

[ Parent ]
AZ-Sen 2016; Dems foolishly think Mark Kelly is their savior
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics...

Because a public advocate for Obama who is pushing major gun control works so well in arguably one of the most gun loving states!

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


Kirkpatrick
She's the only one that scares me for the 2016 race. We need to really try and nuke her this cycle.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
I wouldn't worry about her at all
She voted for just about everything Pelosi put in front of her and really struggles in challenging forums. Plus, she's got limited name recognition as she is only a Flagstaff candidate. If it wasn't for the libertarian candidate she would have lost and frankly because the district is polarized, there is a high floor/low ceiling for any candidate. I think if Paton or another well known figure runs, she'll be in another tossup race this cycle.

The only candidate that would be tough in 2016 - in an open senate race - would be Giffords herself, if she is fully recovered by then. Otherwise, as long as a decent Republican is the nominee, we will be okay. I'm really pulling for McSally to win this cycle, since she would easily be our most charismatic and talented pol to replace McCain. After her there are a handful of elected office holders that would be decent and in AZ there are always ambitious self funders that consider running.

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


[ Parent ]
AZ-1
is in the Phoenix market. They've been seeing her ads.

She will be in another tossup race in 2014, but I'd be afraid of her if she survives. Note I'm not saying it's a tossup - Senate would be a Lean R affair with her, no doubt, but it would be Likely R with anyone else.

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
I know very well that its in the Phoenix market - most of the state is
Which, doesnt do anyone any good, thus she is still relatively unknown. An open senate race with a good GOP candidate is likely R, if Giffords isn't back. Kirkpatrick won't change that. She won't do any better than a Duval or a Goddard, or a Rotellini. If its a blah GOP candidate than it will be lean gop against a decent Dem.

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

[ Parent ]
Rubio ok with new Rove group
http://blogs.cbn.com/thebrodyf...

Rubio is smart the way he is positioning himself.

25, Male, R, NY-10


MA-Sen; Gomez getting some help and buzz
http://mobile.nationaljournal....

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

National Buzz
The local buzz is far different.

http://www.redmassgroup.com/di...

R - MD-7


[ Parent ]
It says top strategists in the state are also helping him


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

[ Parent ]
The Romney Circle and Kaufman are
But that in no way implies seriousness. They are frankly the of the leadership of the Mississippi Republican party circa 1905. All of their influence derived from patronage, or the prospect of controlling federal patronage. This is not a bid to run a serious candidate, but a bid to sabotage Winslow so Baker is the nominee in 2014. It frankly matters less to Kaufman whether or not the GOP wins this year or next than that he is still the RNC Committeeman and in a position to "deliver" to either Christie or Rubio in exchange for controlling state patronage.

27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
What?
Enlighten me please.

If it matters not to Kaufman who wins this year or next, what is his interest in sabotaging Winslow? If he doesn't care who wins, why would he need to deliver Baker as the nominee?

Baker '14
R, MA-3


[ Parent ]
Btw, are you basing "local buzz" as a dinky danky little blog?
Or that Gomez won't do a particular interview until he's officially on the ballot? If so, that's pretty weak.

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

[ Parent ]
RMG is no dinky danky blog
Whatever that means. They're as good a barometer as there is about what happens in the state party.

I think the national buzz will ensure that Gomez gets on the ballot. Winslow will need to crank up whatever local apparatus the party has but I think he gets on too.


[ Parent ]
Okay, lets say its the biggest and best blog on the face of the earth
"local buzz" against Gomez equates to a few responses that were made on the blog, in the link provided?

Unless, someone can show me some serious outrage or distrust towards Gomez, it just seems like sour grapes.

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


[ Parent ]
The Mass. GOP Grassroots
consists of RMG, The Boston Herald Editorial Board, and Barbara Anderson/CLT. This isn't Texas with a bazillion Tea Party Groups.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Gomez is an empty canvas
Unlike Winslow, Gomez has a great bio but no record. Gomez has no ties to Romney and the fact that he donated to Obama/Khazei will actually HELP him in MA. He can paint himself as a sort of outsider, No Labels, anti the mess Washington candidate. That's basically what Brown did. Whether he's got the political skills of Scott Brown remains to be seen. But in a Special this is the only race on the ballot. Voters will need a reason to show up at the polls and liking the guy running because he's a "good guy" is a lot more important in a special than a general.

[ Parent ]
Being part of a birther-run SuperPAC
will cancel out any of that non-partisan buzz from his Obama donation.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
I think its too soon to start saying "Anybody but Gomez"
He's a blank slate. And he wasnt part of a "birther Pac"!  Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund Inc. was a PAC set up by former special forces members that criticized Obama for national security leaks and for taking too much personal credit for the death of Osama bin Laden. Yes it has a Tea Party tinge to it but all Gomez has to say is he joined them because he believes national security shouldnt be politicized. In fact he can criticize the Bush administration for doing it and say thats why he back Obama in 2008 and why he criticized Obama in 2012 for doing the same thing.

[ Parent ]
So what?
Donald Trump is a birther does that make contestants on The Apprentice birthers too? Saying Gomez was a member of a birther run PAC is like saying Piers Morgan was on a birther run TV show.

[ Parent ]
McCain now open to Hagel filibuster
http://www.politico.com/story/...

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

I think the Fillibuster issue is going to be repopened
Cabinet nominees generally are not filibustered(I think it has happened once, and never to stop a nominee) and do not need to satisfy the minority. There is no way to functionally fill a Supreme Court vacancy here under the current rules.

27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
Sure there is
Nominate a candidate who can get 60 votes. Sotomayor and Kagen both did.

[ Parent ]
Should a President Romney have to clear his cabinet picks with Harry Reid?
This has been getting progressively worse. We are at the point not where its simply an issue of nominees being advised or consented upon, but where the minority feels it must be satisfied with the pick, not just minimally improve.

And under current conditions Alito almost certainly would have been filibustered and blocked.

27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
oh please
The current President and Vice President tried exactly that.

27, R, PA-07.

[ Parent ]
The Gang of 14 provided the votes Alito needed
Under the current system, the exact same thing would happen if the nominee were acceptable to Collins, Kirk, Murkowski, Cochran, Alexander, and Graham. Even though they didn't vote for him, Alito needed the likes of Landrieu, Pryor, Lieberman, and Salazar to ensure that no filibuster could be successful.

[ Parent ]
Agree it shouldn't happen to cabinet picks
The people voted for the President, let him fill out his cabinet. If there's an extreme circumstance than maybe, but I'm thinking more along the lines of being a felon than disagreeing about Israel. We have to live with the consequences of Romney's failure.

Libertarian-R New MA-5.  

[ Parent ]
Hagel's relationships are very serious
The NIAC (The National Iranian American Council) is the unofficial lobbying group for the Islamic Republic of Iran. Hagel's been cosy with them, and their founder (Trita Parsi) - a guy by the way who has had access to Obama in the past.

The Hamas thing is also very serious. The rhetoric he used (i.e. Israeli lobby) is very serious.

If there was ever one person not fit to serve in one of the four most serious cabinet positions, it is Chuck Hagel - and it has nothing to do with his past views of Iraq or Afghanistan.  

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


[ Parent ]
Trita Parsi is not a lobbyiest for the Islamic Republic
Anyone who actually follows US-Iranian relations would know that. He was close to Former President Rafsanjani during the, and did act as an unofficial go-between when it looked like Rafsanjani would be the next President in 2005, but he has been in full opposition to Tehran since, and would be jailed by the current gang if showed up now. Parsi also favors normalized Iranian relations with Israel for one thing.

If Parsi was a lobbyist for the Iranian regime in the early 1990s, he is now a go-between with the Iranian opposition. Not the MKE, but with Rafsanjani, Mousavi, Khatami, etc, and therefore he is exactly the sort of person we should be talking with unless you are paling around with ex-royalists and Marxists as far too many US politicians do.

I see no objection to "Israel Lobby". Its no different than pointing out that US policy towards Nagarno-Karabakh is driven heavily by domestic considerations rather than purely strategic considerations. I think Israel is strongly preferable to its neighbors, but I do not see how the nature of that relationship, and whether it is between equals or not is not within acceptable political debate, or why the President shouldn't be allowed to appoint someone if he feels it should be.

I have not seen the friends of Hamas thing substantiated.



27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
I have no idea who you are, but this is the very naive and utter nonsense
I am Iranian and I have followed the issues very closely all my life. In fact, as I have been working on my doctorate in Political Science, I have put a significant emphasis on Iran.

Khatami, Mousavi, and Rafsanjani are all part of the regime. To say otherwise is ridiculous. Most importantly, Rafsanjani was one of Khomeini's top choices to replace him as Supreme Leader. There are factions within the regime, but it isn't over ideology, but rather a power play and it is Rafsanjani, Khatami, and Mousavi in one camp.

This has nothing to do with ex-royalists or Marxists, but rather what many Iranians want, which is regime change that leads to a liberal democracy. And people like Trita Parsi carry the regime's water, no matter what. Now, it may be less emphasized because of his own politics, but it is clear as day that he supports the main framework of the Islamic Republic.  

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


[ Parent ]
Not Sure What Standard You Want to Impose
Should we not talk to Iran at all? Make believe that the world is a different place? Allow a bunch of nobodies who represent no-one to pretend to be the representatives of the Iranian people as we did with Iraq?

I also completed a postgraduate degree with a focus on Iran. The problem is that politics is the art of the possible. In terms of any real prospect of change in Iran post-1989, whether regarding its policy's towards Israel, the United States, or its own internal politics, the people to talk to were the "Reformists" and Rafsanjani's Executives of Construction circle.

Undoubtedly they were part of the regime. And they definitely backed Khomeini. But something that I think you are missing is that the Islamic Republic in principle and Khomeini's memory are not unpopular. Many people believe the Revolution went off the rails, and they will often chose different dates, but almost no one I encountered when I was there Pre-June 2009, and I spoke mostly with Reformists, regretted 1979. Whether for reasons of pragmatism, or commitment, as a consequence almost everyone in Iran falls into your category, which means you are effectively advocating the same policy we had when we insisted on recognizing Chiang Kai-Shek as the sole legal authority for the whole of China. Its a standard that may be compelling and emotionally understandable, but is utterly absurd in practice since it means anyone who talks with anyone who either wielded, wields, or is likely to wield at any future point power in Iran is somehow unacceptable.

Furthermore, Rafsanjani and his circle did want closer relations with the US, and have since the 1980s. Rafsanjani masterminded Iran-Contra, tried repeatedly to get US firms involved with the Oil industry, and is indifferent, as far as anyone is to religious issues.


27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
Well, let me explain...
First of all, I'm glad that you had enough interest in Iran that you went for a postgraduate degree in the subject. However, I suggest you keep studying and actually get an insider's view of the matter (something that takes decades of dedicated practice, since you are an outsider). I mention this because you initally said that Rajsanjani and co. were not part of the regime and that Trita Parsi was not lobbying on their behalf. Yet, you now admit that they are. That tells me you are unsure of yourself and caught yourself of this mistake.

Second, I am an Iranian-American, son of exiles. My wife lived in Iran all her life until two months ago (when she received her VISA to come to the USA), and the majority of my family lives there. Moreover, my brother-in-law is the manager for one of the premier hotels in Iran and must deal with high level mullahs, top business interests, etc... all the time. And personally, I have grown up with the mess that is the Iranian regime since I was in diapers. Everyday, listening, hearing, studying the matter.

So, you going to Iran for what a week, two, a month? Doesn't really mean anything to me. I mean seriously, did you talk in English to these folks, or in broken Persian, if you speak at all? Your appearance, are you white? I mean all of this matters when you go to downtown Iran, especially since you have a lot of the regime's support in that center. More importantly, Iran is a country with nearly 70 million people in it, of course there are supporters of the regime. There are true believers, Islamists, people benefitting from patronage, etc...

But, to say that Khamenei is not unpopular or that many (I take it you mean at least a majority) do not regret the 1979 revolution is more than being a bit presumptious. More than 70% of the population is under the age of 35, not even old enough or born to see the Pahlavi regime. All they've known is the hell they've lived with over the past 34 years. And those over that age? Many have come to regret the ordeal, especially knowing in hindsight the Shah's declining health and Khomeini's lies (Akbar Ganji is one in particular, as he was very close with the regime during the revolution, but then changed going into the 1990s after imprisonment).

Bottom line, of course the United States should be talking with anyone they can. But, the first major principle in those talks must be regime change. And the reality is that the leaders you mentioned are all part of the merry-go-around that is the Islamic Republic government. There are many smart and capable people within Iran who have no connection to the regime or were limited. Those are the folks that should lead the regime change, not the same people who have benefitted in the tyranny of their own people.  

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


[ Parent ]
I don't know much about Iran
and I don't doubt you when you say you're more familiar with the culture than gladstone.

But it's also true that exiles and dissidents are sometimes radically wrong about their country. Naturally, it's very difficult for them to think neutrally. So maybe gladstone's got a point.

http://mypolitikal.com/


[ Parent ]
FYI, no one is "elected" in the IR of Iran
They are selected. And in the beginning of that selection process is the council of guardians (a 12 member panel) selects who the candidates are. Among the many criteria is that all candidates must have a strong association with the regime.

In addition, the equivalent to a separation of powers to the Supreme Leader (Khamenei) is the "Assembly of Experts" which consists of 86 members that can stop the Supreme Leader if they disapprove of his actions and can even remove him. And up until a little over a year ago Rafsanjani was the president of this council, which essentially made him the second most powerful member of the regime.  

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


[ Parent ]
Without Derailing this
I did my MA on this subject, and my dissertation on the Assembly of Experts. What you see in Iran is not what you get. Rafsanjani was chair of the Assembly, but he won because they suspended the rules, and allowed him to win with a plurality of 32 out of 88 votes. Furthermore, the regime as a whole has largely become a security state. What the Assembly could have done nominally and what it could have done in reality is very different. This was made abundantly clear in 2009 when Rafsanjani was prevented from even convening the Assembly.

The Assembly itself has been largely stacked since 1998. The Guardian Council's role is not in the Constitution, and until 1986, when Ayatollah Saenai, a relative liberal who is now part of the Green Movement, was replaced by Ahmad Jannati it was fairly restrained. Its two major acts were disqualifying the MKE leader from running for the Majlis in 1980(but not his party) and banning Mehdi Bazargan from running for President in 1985 over his opposition to continuing the war with Iraq. In 1992 the Council declared it had the right to vet candidates for the Majlis, but the Assembly of Experts had its own standards under which the signatures of three "Marja" was sufficient to prove Islamic credentials.

This was a poor standard if you alienated the religious establishment, which Khamenei did by attempting to assume the title of Grand Ayatollah in 1995. The clergy turned on him, spreading rumors that he had poisoned Ahmad Khomeini, the son of Rullohah in 1994. They also endorsed a host of Reformists for the 1998 elections.

The Guardian Council swing into action, declaring they had the right to vet clergy, and aggressively vetting candidates  so that the Reformists only captured 12 out of 88 seats.

As for Rafsanjani, his personal odyssey is complicated. He used Khamenei to get rid of Montezari in 1988-89, then tried to Reform Iran, restore relations with Europe and the United States, and basically turn it into a normal developing country. The conservatives around Khameni turned at him forcing him to ally with the old Left of Karroubi and Mousavi in the 1996 Majlis elections to stop them. He then backed Khatami in 1997, but got angry because Khatami accused him of corruption. Rafsanjani defected back to Khamenei, who remembering how popular he had been with the educated middle class had him lead the conservative slate for the Majlis in 2000. The elections were a disaster, Rafsanjani failed to win his own seat, and he turned viciously on the Reformists using the Expediency Council to block their legislation. He expected to be the compromise pick for President in 2005, but when he got into the runoff with Ahmadinejad, the Reformists refused to vote for him. Personally alienated that Ahmadinejad had won, and angry about his supporters being sidelined he allied with the Reformists again to oppose Ahmdinejad's consolidation of power.

More recently Ahmadinejad has been on the outs, and has been attempting to forge an alliance with the Reformists against Khamenei. This could go on for much farther, but Iranian politics is really the realm of history as much as it is political science. Institutions don't function the way they nominally due, mission creep is the rule of constitutional law, and ideology is mutable. That said ideology does matter in terms of policy, and it is a mistake to approach this nihalisticlly.

27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
Summary Point though
Selection requires unanimity among those doing the selection, which has been the goal of the Iranian right since 1995 or so, and is one Khamenei is close to achieving this June. It most certainly has not been the rule for most of the last two decades of Iranian politics.

27 NH-01/London/MA-07

Centrist Foreign Policy Realist - Tory in the UK, RINO locally


[ Parent ]
What you need to understand about the selection process
Is that it disqualifies anyone that is against the regime. Yes, within the tiny divisions they won't have unanimity. But, with regards to big differences, they will never allow it.

Even their so called "elections" are a joke. They are all paper ballots. There is no uniform method of protecting votes or counting votes. Yet, they announce the winner of elections within a few hours.

Here in the United States, you know how long it takes to count votes - and that is with a machine. The regime holds these elections to present the imagery of a democracy at work. Yet, from what everyone tells me, it is only those that really support the regime that go vote, as everyone in the country knows it is a joke. In fact, they even get little kids from the regime's supporters to go vote.

And after it takes them a few hours to count up the votes (snark), they announce that tens of millions of people voted. Therefore, what I am trying to say is that even the election process from the selection process is a selection. They are simply playing a game, that is what they have always done going back to Khomeini's radio address from Paris, Frank during the 1970s.  

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


[ Parent ]
Well, let me give you some insight...
You're right about the fact that "what you see in Iran, is not you get."

You studied Iranian politics. You most likely checked out some scholarly books and articles. Okay, but do you have a deep understanding of all of this? The Iranian people? The regime? Based on your post, I don't think so. The one thing you miss from treating Iranian politics like any other institutions within a free society, is that what is printed isn't likely true. In fact, it is most likely propaganda. There are many Iranian scholars in the United States with deep ties to the regime. They write about the regime from a slanted point of view -- and in many cases treating it as a legitimate government (that phrase was used by Chuck Hagel by the way).

A lot of this is a sham. The inside politics about how someone got a position or why someone got offended (i.e. Khatami publicly denouncing Rafsanjani). If these stories were really true than there wouldn't be this constant merry-go-around of leaders. Folks that spoke out would be put down and new people would emerge. But, that does not happen.

An example of this is what you wrote here: "More recently Ahmadinejad has been on the outs, and has been attempting to forge an alliance with the Reformists against Khamenei." If that were truly the case Khamenei could just throw Ahmadinejad out of office. He has the constitutional authority as Supreme Leader to do that. He won't, why? Because they are all part of the same team. A lot of these factions are meant to trick folks into thinking that this is a real democracy with real divisions. Now, on some level there is a power play in the works, but it is not as tall and wide as they would like you to think.

If you speak and understand the language, I suggest you get yourself a satelite network that broadcasts a lot of Iranian programs (direct from the regime, defectors, exiles, etc...), as you will get a better understanding of what is truly going on.  

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


[ Parent ]
This derail has gotten out of control
We're sitting both of you down for a few days for the various derails and flareups you've caused on today's roundup.

[ Parent ]
What do you mean?
I haven't meant to offend him or anyone else. This is an elections website and what we are talking about is in context about elections. No different than when people talk about the Vatican, Israel, or various European elections.

I think it is important to talk about these things as it vital into understanding why someone like Chuck Hagel should not be Def. Secretary. Still, if you guys don't want it, I won't bring it up again.  

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


[ Parent ]
I don't necessarily disagree with you on a policy standpoint
I just think that the senate's role in foreign affairs is very defined: approve treaties, declare war, and appropriate funds. The President can institute a pro-Iran foreign policy if he wants (not saying he will do so, just as a hypothetical). The constitutional bar for appointments is 50 votes. If we couldn't convince voters to elect Republicans, this is what we're stuck with.

And, to be fair - it was wrong when the Dems pulled these shenanigans back under Bush.

Libertarian-R New MA-5.  


[ Parent ]
eh its just grumbling
The same grumbling occurred 12 years ago with John Ashcroft. That grumbling is merely more visible today due to advances in communication.

It all will amount to little.

27, R, PA-07.


[ Parent ]
Anyone who has taken money for a Terrorist organization cant be US Sec of Def
The rumors that were circulating was that Hagel took money from the "Friends of Hamas" to give a speech. Hamas is a terrorist organization. Hagel wont release info on who paid him to speak. I think its perfectly reasonable for the US Senate to fillibuster a cabinet nominee until they provide crucial information the Senate would need to give its advise and consent.

[ Parent ]
Breaking News: Simon bails on Quinn for IL gov
@BenBradleyABC7: BREAKING: Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon announces she will "explore other opportunities," not run again with Illinois' unpopular governor Pat Quinn.

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

Call me crazy, but...
If Durbin retires, she could be the downstater he'd anoint to be his replacement. He'd then groom Duckworth or Bustos to take on Mark Kirk...

[ Parent ]
I could see it, however
I would think Lisa Madigan could finally make the big jump. And rather than take on a sitting governor (although he is unpopular), why wouldn't she run for an open senate race, where she could clear the field?

Sure, it is a midterm cycle, but she's such a big name in Illinois that I cannot imagine even a Bob Dold giving her that tough of a time.

If we get Simon or Duckworth or Bustos, I believe Dold could make it a tossup at some point during the race - although he will be an underdog to start.  

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


[ Parent ]
Apparently she's playing up
her "legal and financial experience" - sounds like AG or Treasurer.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Probably Treasurer...
... since it should be open, but thinking she'll keep her options open if Madigan decides to move up.

(-9.38, -7.49), libertarian socialist, KY 01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."


-- Stanisław Lem


[ Parent ]
Durbin's old loyalties can come back to bite him in the ass
Durbin is not alone: top Illinois Democrats are obsessed with Sheila Simon. Her last name notwithstanding, she does not have the makings of a formidable statewide candidate. A big disqualifier is her appearance. In a world where only political junkies would vote, looks wouldn't be a part of the equation. However, in today's political climate where politicians brand themselves as celebrities, there's a minimum standard for appearance. Unfortunately for Simon, her smile could kill her electoral prospects.

That being said, looks isn't everything, and that's why Illinois Dems would be foolish to prop up Cheri Bustos. She's a charlatan who struggles to deliver memorized talking points. If she ran, her Meet the Press debate with Kirk (Gregory continued this Russert tradition, right?) would be epic.

Duckworth isn't much better. Illinois's partisan composition and a few ads touting the Iraq vet's life story may catapult her to the Senate. However, Duckworth's as much of an empty suit as Bustos. Walsh was right: she avoids the issues largely because she doesn't understand them.

Illinois Democrats would be smart to focus on another downstater, Bill Enyart. Age might be a disqualifier; he's 63 (and looks it). They also have two wonkish workhouses in the legislature -- State Senator Dan Biss and State Rep Elaine Nekritz -- who can win if party operatives starting grooming them and enlarging their donor bases. I also think David Hoffman would be a stellar candidate. Had the primary been pushed back a month, I suspect that Hoffman would have beaten Giannoulias.

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Is Bustos trying to be the liberal Sarah Palin?
[ Parent ]
Can I say she is very sexy in this picture??? :)


38, male, Roma ( Italia ), conservative

[ Parent ]
You can, and I will as well.


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

[ Parent ]
Apparently
Her husband looks like the corrupt general in the James Bond movie Quantum of the Solace.

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
Is that her husband or her pre-predecessor Phil Hare?


[ Parent ]
Husband
http://www.cheribustos.com/about

(-9.38, -7.49), libertarian socialist, KY 01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."


-- Stanisław Lem


[ Parent ]
WV-Sen; another Dem declines
@RomanStauffer: On #Talkine w/ @HoppyKercheval, U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin rules out a run for #WVSen in 2014. No word on cousin Carte Goodwin, yet. #polwv

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

MA-Gov; Scott Brown signs on with FNC
HowardKurtz‏@HowardKurtz

It's official: Fox News signs Scott Brown as contributor. Heading down a more moderate post-Palin path?

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


IL Governor Poll
http://chicagobusiness.com/art...
Notice: I linked this frm the mobile version

Madigan leads Gov (3 county) Quinn in the Dem primary and Bill Daley, brother of the former mayor of Chicago, is in third. Quinn could possibly win against Madigan if it turns into a clown car primary.

On the Republican side, Treasurer Dan Rutherford is the only one who breaks double digits.  

27, IL-7, Fiscal Conservative


How are Rutherford and Brady stuck at 10%??
90% of Republicans voted for them two years ago!

Baker '14
R, MA-3


[ Parent ]
In the general election!
90% of Republicans voted for them because they were the only Republicans on the ballot.

(-9.38, -7.49), libertarian socialist, KY 01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."


-- Stanisław Lem


[ Parent ]
Right
But you think there would be pretty strong residual name rec, especially for Brady. I'm guessing they made zero effort to push undecideds. When a pollster includes that many names in a horserace question, it tends to produce high undecideds because people are overwhelmed by the options.

[ Parent ]
Residual name recognition
They might recognize his name, but would it have any positive associations? I imagine that what politically unengaged Republicans remember about Brady is that he lost a race he was supposed to win, and that now Pat Quinn is their Governor.

(-9.38, -7.49), libertarian socialist, KY 01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy."


-- Stanisław Lem


[ Parent ]
Dubious Poll Results
As is usually the case when pollsters go into the field a year before a primary. It's not an issue of name recognition; more than 5% of Illinois Republicans know who Joe Walsh is.

Republicans are just undecided because there is no consenus candidate around whom they can all rally right now. Democrats have big names in the state: Madigan, Durbin, Emanuel. Republicans don't. Kirk and Brady may have been at the top of the ticket two years ago, but they were never considered the two biggest names in the state's Republican politics.

On a sidenote, what are the odds that Karl Rove intervenes in this race? Ostensibly, he has good reason to: Brady give Democrats' the edge in the general, while Dillard makes it a top pick-up for the GOP. However, I doubt Rove cares much about gubenatorial elections

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Kirk/Obama fist bump
The Kirk/Obama fist bump reminded me of when I worked on the Senate floor and Senator Kirk (not my sponsor) saw me--and knew who I was from his campaigns--and walked all the way down into the well of the Senate, fist bumped me, asked how I was doing, and walked away. My fellow Pages were amused by how happy that made me.

IA-1
State Rep. Pat Murphy (D-Dubuque) in. http://www.thonline.com/news/b...

R - MD-7

Should the NRCC even bother?
At D+5, I think this seat is out of reach for the GOP. It became more Democratic during redistricting; now, it's slightly bluer than Loebsack's IA-2. Plus, there are at least 20 better pick-up opportunities.

If Republicans are serious about this race, they have to nominate a first-tier candidate (note to Ben Lange: that means not you). Additionally, they need a crowded (read: divisive) Democratic primary from which a liberal advances (are any of the prospective Democratic candidates left-wingers?). And turnout in Waterloo needs to be depressed.  

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
To Frack or not to Frack, that is the question
Gov Cuomo continues to play "Hamlet on the Hudson", as he has again postponed issuing regulations regarding fracking in NY. The NY Times points out he has been under a lot of pressure from the left of the Dem party in NY to oppose fracking; none other than Yoko Ono has led a campaign against fracking.  If you listen to her you would think fracking will lead to the worst disaster short of an asteroid strike.  Cuomo has moved to the left this year, and IMO I think that whenever Fracking Regs are finally issued, they will be so strict that there will be few drillers willing to engage in fracking.  

it's a touchy issue
you have to weigh the cost on if the benifits of fracking to get petroleum prodcuts outweigh the tax dollars needed to cleanup possible tainted groundwater.

[ Parent ]
Collins a no on Hagel, but won't join filibuster
https://twitter.com/ShannonBre...

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

Paul seeking to block Brennan nomination
http://www.politico.com/story/...

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

NRCC's January Haul: $4.4m
http://atr.rollcall.com/nrcc-r...

Apparently, their best haul for a January in an odd year since 2007.

Dems haven't filed yet. It's always good to have money. I think the NRCC was constantly outraised last cycle (Pelosi's fundraising juggernaut really worked in high gears), so starting the new cycle strong is a nice thing in my book.

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker


Cornyn introduced balanced budget amendment today
It has 44 other cosponsors in the Senate but unlikely to find enough Democracts for 67. What I found interesting is it has a few more details than versions seen previously over the past couple of decades:

http://www.weeklystandard.com/...

(extended quote)
Prior to each fiscal year, the President must submit to Congress a balanced budget that limits outlays to 18 percent of GDP

With limited exceptions, Congress must limit outlays to 18 percent of GDP

Establishes a new supermajority requirement for net tax and rate increases.

Establishes new supermajority requirement for an increase in the debt limit.
(end extended quote)

The requirement for "net" was to ensure a revenue netural tax simplification policy that lowered the rate but decreased deductions would only need simply majority. The supermajority for taxes at all was to address concern future congresses would raise taxes to address imbalances instead of cutting spending. (Similar goal with the 18% caps on spending)


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


NE-LG
New LG is Lavon Heidemann, a former state Senator who was just elected to the University of Nebraska Board of Regents last November. Heineman will now appoint somebody to fill Heidemann's seat on the Board of Regents.

42, R, NE-1.

ha
Heineman-Heidemann

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 ]
Yeah-a little confusing
Heidemann said he's been addressed as "governor" before because of the similarity of the names. Now it will be even more confusing to people.

42, R, NE-1.

[ Parent ]
CO
AG Suthers is term limited so what's his next move? US race?

Bob Beauprez is most likely to run for Senate
He was a rising star who lost the Gov race in the 2006 Dem wave.

[ Parent ]
Suthers won in 06
I think he is strongest GOP in state at moment so what is he going run for next?

[ Parent ]
Probably 2018-Gov
He said he'd run for Governor if it wasn't against Hickenlooper.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Suthers
I think he would run in 2018 for governor.  

[ Parent ]
MS-Sen
Cochran will decide on re-election late this year or early next. I don't know how to read that. http://atr.rollcall.com/missis...

R - MD-7

Second retirement season
The second wave of retirements usually come 10-12 months from the election.

[ Parent ]
Important news from the Onion
When did the Onion quit doing satire and start reporting actual news.

http://www.theonion.com/articl...

http://www.theonion.com/articl...


28, Republican, PA-6


LA-SEN: Jindal's approval down, Landrieu leads all, Republicans unknown
Poll?
So Landrieu leads Jindal 49-41% yet only leads Dardene by 3%?  Landrieu at 50% again in a lot their numbers.  

[ Parent ]
Well Jindal is obviously unpopular...That's why.


[ Parent ]
also
Dardene is a former Democrat, and likely gets more crossover support. Remember, an outright majority of the Louisiana are registered Democrats.

I am a Tom Rukavina Democrat.

[ Parent ]
No
You're confusing him with Treasurer Kennedy (or maybe AG Caldwell), both of whom switched parties very recently. Dardenne is very much an old-line Republican.

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
But
Dardenne is also much more moderate than either and probably more popular with Democrats, especially compared to Kennedy.  

Male, LA-01

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


[ Parent ]
Jindal
His results alone make me strongly doubt this poll. Sure, he has been hurt recently by his income tax proposal (which our state stupidly dislikes) and his education plan being struck down, but he is not nearly as unpopular as PPP says. Two recent local polls had his approval in the high 40s with disapproval in the low to mid 40s- not nearly as popular as he has been, but also unpopular.  

Male, LA-01

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


[ Parent ]
Landrieu's numbers are deceiving
Never mind that the PPP is up to subterfuge again, as its pollsters try to prop up vulnerable Democrats. First it's Begich and Landrieu; next it'll be Pryor and Johnson (the current Senator or possibly his son).

Counterintuively, these results should buoy Republicans. In order for Landrieu to win, her approval rating needs to be well over 50 percent. She can't rely on everyone who gives her a thumps up, as many of them will vote for her Republican opponent.

Lincoln Chafee and Scott Brown would have won in landslides had everyone who approved their job performance voted for them. They didn't because voters supported the candidate they liked even more.

Thus, Landrieu's 47-45 split should set off alarms in her campaign HQ. Her operatives know it only gets worse from here. Barring a Todd Akin-like gamechanger, Landrieu won't return to the Senate in 2015.

Ryan/Kasich 2016


[ Parent ]
Landrieu
Her approval is also higher right now than it should be- outside groups have been airing ads propping her up since November. They recently made another big buy. If any race needs early Crossroads involvement, it's this one. She is still at only +2 after literally months of positive advertising- this is her high water mark. While her defeat is not nearly as certain as you say, she is also not in nearly as good shape as PPP wants you to believe  

Male, LA-01

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


[ Parent ]
Umm...
How do you know PPP is trying to prop up vulnerable Democrats? Good poll evidence for Democrats is not a reason. In fact, no Democratic incumbent should actually be losing to anybody at this minute, except in West Virginia and South Dakota. Most Republican challengers have such low name recognition that of course Landrieu, Pryor, Begich, and Hagan are going to start up 5-15 points against everyone. Eventually when Cassidy or Darr or Treadwell or whoever gets name recognition they will pull close.



[ Parent ]
Reading the Economist at work today
They had an article about the recent proposals to divide electoral votes by Congressional district, including this hilariously wrong map:

http://i100.photobucket.com/al...

25, M, VA-11, moderate R


If Romney had won VA-08, I'd be so happy right now...


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

[ Parent ]
Its a British magazine
what do they know about colonial politics?

[ Parent ]
Given their history
I'm not surprised.  I remember them referring to "The Conservative DC Suburbs of Northern Virginia" before too.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-18

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


[ Parent ]
Doesn't giving a speech make you thirsty?
https://www.reclaimamericapac....

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2

If that isn't the surest sign...
Rubio intends to run for President, I don't know what is. I'd like to think that drink of water was scripted just for this purpose.  

20-Cubano, R, CA-38
City Commissioner, College Republican Club President


[ Parent ]
Clearly
Rubio comes off as very staged to me.  

28, Republican, PA-6

[ Parent ]
I can say this
Rubio's got some smart people working for him.  People who know how to turn a potential flop into a plus are the sorta of people you want running your campaign.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-18

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


[ Parent ]
MA-Sen: Caissie (R) out
She is the Governor's Councilor for Worcester County. Still waiting on Tarr and Michael Sullivan, though I really doubt either enters this late.

http://www.telegram.com/articl...

R - MD-7


She is a very attractive candidate
Much more photogenic than Dan Winslow  

[ Parent ]
She strikes me as Kerry Healey 2.0
Might be on a lieutenant governor shortlist or consider a House run, but definitely not Senate material, at this at this point. Not that Gomez is exactly of that calibur either...

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

[ Parent ]
NYS Comp didnt make sense for Spitzer
If he wanted a comeback NYC Public Advocate would be a better way to redemption. A loud mouth like Spitzer would be right at home in that do nothing job. The funny part is if he did run for PA he could end up in a primary vs Anthony Wiener!

[ Parent ]
Texas election results by CD
ftp://ftpgis1.tlc.state.tx.us/PlanC235/Reports/PDF/PlanC235_RED225_2012G.pdf

Great link. Cruz clearly over performed in minority communities; he won TX-23 by 6 pts. He did better in the black districts too.

27, R, PA-07.


TX-23: Gallego is really strong
Romney won it with 51.4% of the two-party votes, but Gallego way overperformed Obama, getting 52.5% of the two-party votes (versus Obama's 48.6%).  

[ Parent ]
TX-23: Harvey Hilderbran
Could a non-Hispanic like state Rep. Hilderbran win this district?  

[ Parent ]
One term rental at best
We really need to keep running out Latino Rs in heavy Latino districts in TX for our long term benefit  

[ Parent ]
Not necessarily
A Republican candidate need not be Hispanic to win Hispanic districts in Texas (see Bush, George W.) That said, Hilderbran is a non-starter in that district; not because he is white, but because he lives in Kerrville, which is in TX-21.

Lifelong Republican, TX-17

[ Parent ]
Its all about candidate choice
The Texas Border is one of the more unique political regions in the US.  Its not that we need to run Hispanics (though that helps, since much of the territory is ~90% Hispanic), but more that we need to run the right candidates.  George W Bush was a great fit there, because "Compassionate Conservatism" is exactly the right angle to win over the devoutly Catholic Hispanic family-men and women that are the swing voters there.

23, Libertarian Republican CA-18

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


[ Parent ]
CO-AG: Chief Deputy AG Cynthia Coffman
should run. She is very qualified for the job, and many voters are already familiar with her surname. She is the wife of former CO Treasurer, former CO SoS, and current Rep. Mike Coffman.  

She seems like a good choice
I do worry that her last name could be a negative though. Husband-wife political teams serving simultaneously are often seen as too much power going into one nuclear family (i.e. Huckabees in 2002).

R - MD-7

[ Parent ]
Plus Mike Coffman will be barraged with attack ads
His unfavorables will correlate with hers. Since his district is in the Denver media market, voters outside of it (who are represented by DeGette, Perlmutter, Polis, etc.) will also form perceptions of him -- most of which will be negative. That could derail -- or at least undermine -- his wife's candidacy

Ryan/Kasich 2016

[ Parent ]
Scott Brown's explanation
Brown noted that it isn't Kerry's seat - "it is the people's seat, as you remember" - and said he decided he didn't want to be involved in yet another race as well as a Congress that's "really dysfunctional and extremely partisan."

"To do five races in six years and raise another $30-$50 million and then and participate in a Congress that's really dysfunctional and extremely partisan - I felt I could make a difference being on this show and doing other things," Brown said. "I plan to stay involved certainly, but, you know, I'm going to continue to work and be part of the election process back home and other elections around the country."

http://www.politico.com/blogs/...

R, CA-37; hometown: PA-2


NC-Sen: Berry Considering
http://www.nationaljournal.com...

Male, LA-01

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


We need an A+ candidate in NC
I'm very pessimistic about our chances for this race, atm. Hagan is such a generic Dem that doesn't really bump heads with other people, or gives high profile remarks - which means as long as you don't hear about outrageous statements, it must mean that she's doing an ok job. That seems to be enough for many people.

German citizen - Conservative by heart, non native english speaker

[ Parent ]
Berry has a slight celebrity standing on college campuses
Due to her picture being in elevators and her memorable name.

For example, some students from Elon University in Alamance County, NC made a music video parody.

This might dissapate in a campaign, but I could see her running 5-10% ahead of the average conservative R in some college precincts.

Mainstream Dem.  


[ Parent ]
I seriously doubt it
A very high percentage of college students work minimum wage jobs or know someone who does. I can't imagine Berry would run ahead of typical GOP performance with college students once they find out she wants to abolish the minimum wage.

Democrat, NC-11

[ Parent ]
She even made a campaign commercial about her pic in the elevator
To my knowledge this is a real ad:
http://youtu.be/wnFLoruxh0I
 

[ Parent ]
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