Thursday, August 13, 2009

Death Panel Resurrects Joe Justice

10 months to the day! The DAY!

Even Fred Thompson is exited.

And the impossible has occurred. After witnessing crazy white person upon crazy white person avail themselves of handheld microphones at various town halls across America, and after seeing Sarah Palin start putting made-up death panel footnotes--FOOTNOTES!--in her Facebook wall comments, the time has finally come to get back on the bucking horse of shiny bullshit that is blogging and get to work.

First up, my former Senator (and for a time, boss, as intern) Chuck Grassley.

Chuck! You used to be so much fun! Folksy and funny. Closeted populist.

The guy used to walk around his Senate office joking, "Anybody mad at me?"

What happened, girlfriend?

Methinks it's a little thing called Jesus. Well. More like Jesus and his magical hold on the GOP, a.k.a. defensive, uncomfortable white people.

So, go back about 9 years. It all starts with a very special day for the Grassley interns, a day that happens at the very end of your tenure as, basically, a white kid who sits in the auto-pen closet and signs letters to constituents back home for a few hours a day. Anyway, Chuck takes the interns to the Senate cafeteria for lunch. And at said lunch, yours truly, a government major at Georgetown and all around Iowa Boy made the big mistake of asking Chuck whether he would charactize his conservative philosophy as effectively a Midwestern form of libertarian populism.

Chuck did not like this.

I'm back, kids. And this time I'm going to edit less and write harder. You betcha.

More to come.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Transition time, in more ways than one.

More thoughts on the President-elect, Proposition 8, and the state of the Parties to come.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Turf Wars

Rachel Maddow did an awesome job last evening explaning the state of the race using a football field and some intelligent analysis:

Sorry for the long intro, this clip has the best sound quality. Skip to 2:15 for the story.

State of Mind

The Republicans and Drudge Report and Fox, etc., want you to focus on national numbers. They are citing "internal numbers" but will not reveal their specifics. They are using totally discredited folks like Dick Morris or Zogby to scare you.

Most importantly, though, they may want you to forget we elect our President via a crazy thing called the Electoral College. You know, the mechanism that made all of those Al Gore votes meaningless...

State-by-state, John McCain is just not doing well. It's irrefutable. So breathe deep and stay strong.

Nevada: the state's most respected political reporter says early voting for the Democrats is so overwhelming, the Republicans now have "an almost impossible task."

Ohio: numerous polls show Obama pulling away--ever so slightly--from McCain.

Florida: Republican Governor Charlie Crist (a sensible Republican, who knew?) extended early voting hours and opened up early voting for 12 hours this weekend, providing a huge boost to Obama's intense early voting efforts there. Multiple polls show the race in a dead heat.

Colorado: McCain has all but abandoned the state. Obama's lead has grown in recent days.

Iowa: Obama has been in the lead in every single poll taken since he won the nomination. The majority of polls have him leading by double digits.

New Mexico: All recent polls have Obama anywhere from 50% to 55%.

Pennsylvania: Despite the nervous chatter from people like Ed Rendell, polling in the past few weeks has been great, showing double digit leads. A poll out today shows Obama up 11 points. The average for Obama in the last 10 polls of this state has him at 52% support.

The reason I focus on these states above, is that if Barack Obama wins the Kerry states (of which Obama currently leads in all of them, and which includes Pennsylvania), and if Obama also adds Nevada, Colorado, Iowa and New Mexico he is President of the United States.

This doesn't even consider or include Virginia, Florida, Ohio, or Missouri-- all states Obama has a strong chance to carry. Also, it doesn't even include Indiana or North Carolina, states where Obama has superior campaign staff operations and where polls show dead heats.

So the big number I keep returning to is 50. McCain and the Republicans may forget this, but in a two man race, if one person has 50 or above, they win. The opponent up against someone with 50%, well, they can't win. No chance. Just because we currently have a President who doesn't like facts or math, doesn't mean math is dead. Trust me: math lives.

The media seems to be ignoring this fact as well. Obama doesn't need to win by 10 points in every state. It would be great, and in many states his strong leads will be excellent buffers against odd factors like race, fraud or error. But in all of these states where Barack Obama is polling at or near 50%, the chances for McCain are not just remote, they are impossible. Even if McCain can surge up from his low 40s in these states, if Obama hits 50%, Obama gets the electoral votes.

I'm nervous as hell. Fighting for anything worth winning will make you nervous. But I just don't see the McCain-Palin strategy right now. Until McCain can pull out a poll (non-internet and non-Zogby) showing Obama behind in either Pennsylvania or Virginia, I'm not nervous with fear. I'm nervous with excitement.

Update (1:15pm PST): New battleground numbers from CNN/Time confirm the pretty stable situation at the state level for Obama--
Colorado: Obama 53, McCain 45
Florida: Obama 51, McCain 47
Georgia: McCain 52, Obama 47
Missouri: McCain 50, Obama 48
Virginia: Obama 53, McCain 44

Friday, October 24, 2008

Closing Days

Barack Obama takes the stage in Leesburg, Virginia on October 22, 2008.

[courtesy of a diary on Daily Kos]

Crashing, Burning

Always an interesting read, Atlantic blogger Marc Ambinder wrote a post recently that Sarah Palin might be heading off the McCain reservation with 2012 in mind. One of his examples of her awkward breaks with McCain was the comment she made in several speeches that Obama was "palling around with terrorists," which apparently was not a McCain campaign line.

Randy Scheunemann, who acts as McCain's chief foreign policy adviser e-mailed Ambinder this about the Palin post:

Just read your post. This is on the record. This is cleared by HQ. It is a fact that Barack Obama was palling around with terrorists. It was a fact before Governor Palin said it in a fully vetted speech and it is fact today. It is bullshit to claim or write anything else.

And that, my friends, is why John McCain will never be President of the United States.

McCain pals around with pathetic thugs who don't get it.

Robin Hood or Sheriff of Nottingham?

John McCain speaking to about 4,000 supporters (kinda small for the closing days of a campaign, no?) in Denver today:

"Senator Obama may say he's trying to soak the rich, but it's the middle class who are going to get put through the wringer, because a lot of his promised tax increase misses the target."

The problem for Republicans is that this just doesn't make obvious sense, and might be why voters aren't biting. McCain is saying that if Obama taxes the wealthier folks to provide relief to the lower earning working class, then this hurts the working class?

I think McCain is trying to have it both ways: Obama will raise everyone's taxes, but Obama will spread the wealth from the top to the bottom.

Which is it?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lipstick and Leather Can't Disguise

This is riveting and worth the entire view. The tail end is the best moment.

This country is too great to have such a non-serious, arrogant person trying to be it's Vice President. There is nothing "elitist" about wanting leaders to know the history and facts of the United States. Even in "Non-Real America" here in Los Angeles, I do know what the Constitution says.