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07 January 2009 @ 12:57 pm
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1053548.html

Joe the Plumber: Israel Correspondent
 
 
31 December 2008 @ 11:20 am
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28448187/

The Ohio woman dubbed "the Granny Robber" in several bank heists was trying to support a grown son who had fallen on hard times, her defense attorney said Tuesday.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28440587/

The Multnomah County Sheriff's Office said an 88-year-old woman fended off a naked intruder by grabbing the man's crotch and squeezing. Deputy Paul McRedmond said the man got into the house Tuesday through a sliding door. He backed the woman into her living room and pushed her face down onto a chair. That's when the woman reached behind and squeezed. The man tore free and fled.
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29 December 2008 @ 09:19 pm
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28425990/

Bristol Palin has her baby.
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27 December 2008 @ 11:09 pm
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,473132,00.html

Maybe trusting the bank to keep your money safe isn't so bad...
 
 
27 December 2008 @ 09:26 pm
http://www.philly.com/philly/hp/news_update/20081226_Phila__man_shot_because_family_talked_during_movie.html

Man shot in the arm because he was talking during Benjamin Button.
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27 December 2008 @ 09:22 pm
http://www.newsweek.com/id/176300

On power and the 50 most powerful people in the world.
 
 
26 December 2008 @ 06:41 pm
Ahmadinejad on the way to see Bolt in 3D...

 
 
26 December 2008 @ 06:30 pm
http://www.newsweek.com/id/176836

The election's over but the lies keep on coming. Factcheck continues to point them out.

"-It's not true that unionized auto workers at Detroit's Big Three make more than $70 an hour, as claimed by some opponents of federal aid.
-And no, 3 million workers won't be tossed out of work if aid is not forthcoming, as claimed by those favoring a taxpayer bailout.
-President-elect Obama never promised to seek a ban on all semi-automatic weapons, as claimed by some fearful gun owners.
-And no, Obama did not propose a Gestapo-like civilian security force as claimed by a Republican member of Congress from Georgia and any number of overwrought bloggers.
-Democrats in Congress are not discussing any plan to confiscate the assets in 401(k) retirement accounts, another falsehood spread about by chain e-mails and Internet postings.
-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not demand a 757-size personal jet, a false claim resurrected when Democrats criticized Big Three executives for flying to D.C. on their own private jets to beg for aid.
-And Pelosi's husband doesn't own a $17 million stake in a food company that she may (or may not) have tried to help with an exemption from a new minimum wage law."
 
 
26 December 2008 @ 02:12 pm
Now that the election is over, I'm just using this space to post interesting links and stories for a while.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28389048/

Viagra Helps CIA Win Friends in Afghanistan
 
 
06 November 2008 @ 07:07 pm
"Senator Lindsey Graham - of all people - praises the choice of Rahm Emanuel for Chief of Staff. Conservative Pete Wehner does not. Liberal Ezra Klein has mixed feelings. Another liberal, David Corn, says the choice could send the wrong signal. Yuval Levin at National Review calls the choice "extremely disconcerting."

Personally, I respect Rahm's political skills even if his style might be off putting to some. And make no mistake about it: he is a vicious partisan, though not necessarily an ideologue. But the position he's accepted isn't about style or even necessarily about partisanship. It requires being effective, efficient, and keeping the trains running on time inside the administration.

How Rahm goes about doing that is his business - and his boss's. If he goes around blowing up at the staff, berating/browbeating/threatening members of Congress, etc., one would think it will show up in the results. And in the end, results are what matter. Whatever else you want to say about Emanuel, he's proven that he gets results, and for that reason he's probably a very good choice by Obama."- Tom Bevan, Real Clear Politics conservative

I think Emanuel is a good choice. To borrow a phrase from the Bush Administration, he serves at the pleasure of the president so his partisan nature really shouldn't matter. If he doesn't act the way Obama wants him to, he'll be out of a job and he didn't give up a senior position in the House and inside track to the Speaker position to get displaced in a year or so. The guy gets results and he probably knows that he needs to serve Obama's interests, not his own.
 
 
05 November 2008 @ 12:03 pm
So I've been paying attention to this election for a long long long time. Ever since MSNBC posted a potential contenders list in late 2006, I've been tuned in. From early 2007, my top 2 candidates running for President were Barack Obama and Joe Biden and my top Republican was John McCain. From the time Obama become the nominee, my top choice willing to be vice president was Joe Biden. Strangely, everything worked out perfectly. The polls were basically dead on and Obama picked up more than 300 electoral votes.

Good things come to those who wait, now comes the hard part, governing the country in a difficult time for 4 years, hopefully 8. FOX News is incredibly callous for making this their website banner just 1 day after Obama's victory, but it's true, time to get to work.

 
 
03 November 2008 @ 06:10 pm
State of the Race 11/3:

Just 1 day until the election and it appears that Obama has a stranglehold on victory. I would say that Obama has a 99% chance to win assuming the polls aren't horrendously wrong. The national polls have collapsed to a 5-9 point race and if those are accurate, the state polls are largely irrelevant. Anything over a 2-3 point national popular vote win is essentially a guaranteed victory based on the way things inevitably shake out in the electoral college. There is still a plausible scenario for a McCain victory but it's going to a clear surge in a few states that polls don't currently project.

The media is going to be all over what states and counties to watch so I won't bother laying that out. One non-presidential issue that is going to be very interesting is if the Democrats get to 60 in the Senate. Right now they look to have a decent chance to get to 59. The 60th seat, if they get it, will likely come from Georgia. However, there's an interesting quirk in Georgia law. If no candidate reaches 50% of the vote, there will be a runoff election on December 2nd. That means if the Democrats get to 59 (as they probably will if Al Franken wins in Minnesota), then the Chambliss/Martin race will become incredibly important and, if neither candidate reaches 50% tomorrow, will likely become the most insane month of a senate election ever. Both parties will dump millions into it and things will get extremely nasty. Just something to pay attention to tomorrow, in order for this scenario to occur, Dems need to win in VA, CO, AK, NM, NH, OR, NC, and MN, many of which are likely victories.

As you can see, this election is probably all about those leaning states. Obama basically just needs to come up with 27 electoral votes (26 to tie) between Pennsylvania, Colorado, Virginia, and Nevada to win the election, all of which have a clear lean in his direction at this point. So it's either win PA and 1 other or sweep Colorado, Virginia, and Nevada to all but guarantee victory.

On to the states...

Obama Locks: (217 electoral votes)
California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), Michigan (17), New Jersey (15), New York (31), Oregon (7), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11), Wisconsin (10)

Obama Almost Locks: (26 electoral votes)
Iowa (7), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), New Mexico (5)

Obama Leaning: (48 electoral votes)
Colorado (9)- Projected lead of 4-8 points
Nevada (5)- Projected lead of 4-8 points
Pennsylvania (21)- Projected lead of 4-8 points
Virginia (13)- Projected lead of 3-7 points

Obama Toss-ups: (47 electoral votes)
Florida (27)- Projected lead of (-1)-3 points
Ohio (20)- Projected lead of (-2)-4 points***

McCain Toss-ups: (43 electoral votes)
Indiana (11)- Projected lead of (-1)-2 points
Missouri (11)-Projected lead of (-1)-1 point
Montana (3)- Projected lead of (-1)-4 points
North Carolina (15)- Projected lead of (-2)-2 points
North Dakota (3)- Projected lead of (-2)-2 points

McCain Leaning: (27 electoral votes)
Arizona (10)- Projected lead of 3-7 points
Georgia (15)- Projected lead of 3-7 points
Nebraska District 1 and 2* (2)- Projected lead of 3-7 points

McCain Almost Locks: (37 electoral votes)**
Arkansas (6), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), West Virginia (5)

McCain Locks: (93 electoral votes)
Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Nebraska (3)*, Oklahoma (7), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

*Nebraska divides its electoral votes by district and at-large. Maine does too but it appears all districts are locked up.
**A number of these Southern states appear to be locks and Obama only stands a chance if there is a massive African-American turnout.
***Ohio's polls have been particularly variable, even among reliable pollsters, so it's very hard to project which way the state will fall. Frankly anything between -3 and +7 wouldn't be too surprising.

Locks/Almost Locks: Obama 243, McCain 130
With Leaners: Obama 291, McCain 157, Tossup 90
With Tossups: Obama 338, McCain 200
 
 
31 October 2008 @ 09:26 pm
"Expanding the Field: Obama is running out of states if you follow out a traditional model. Today, he expanded his buy into North Dakota, Georgia and Arizona in an attempt to widen the playing field and find his 270 Electoral Votes. This is a very tall order and trying to expand into new states in the final hours shows he doesn't have the votes to win."- McCain campaign memo

They're beginning to sound as delusional as the Clinton campaign in May and June. I guess they have no choice considering they can't afford to lose any votes due to an "it's over, why bother?" effect. Drudge is certainly doing the best he can to pretend there is any evidence this is a close race. Right now, it looks like a 90% chance that Obama will win. 7 of the 10% for McCain comes from the chance that the polling is horribly wrong, not any belief he's really in it based on all the evidence.
 
 
27 October 2008 @ 06:30 pm
State of the Race 10/27:

Just 8 days to go and little has changed. Some states are teetering back and forth between categories but a lot of that is probably just margin of error stuff appearing to be shifts. In the interest of not being shocked on Election Day, I'd consider anything below +5 to still be a real tossup and even the 5-8s aren't really locked in even on this late date. Looking at some of the states/groups of states separately....
Pennsylvania/Iowa- Both appear to be safe Obama but McCain is still pursuing them. I'm not sure if the races are closer than it appears or he has just no other choice but to widen the field and hope for a state with more older, white voters. The lead in both states appears to be 8-12.
New Hampshire- It's only 4 electoral votes so not a big concern probably but it slipped a bit this week. It seems the state relishes the thought of keeping everyone guessing.
Virginia- So far, this looks to be the one that will put Obama over 270. Most polls have him up 7-10 but apparently VA has a reputation for breaking toward the Republican on Election Day so perhaps he'll have to pull it out a tough one.
Colorado- Firewall state #2, lead appears pretty stable in the 5-7 range.
Nevada- The best looking of the tossup states. My instincts say Obama can count on a 3-5 point win.
Ohio/Florida/North Carolina/Missouri- They keep bounding around but it does appear Obama leads in all of them. The question is whether he leads by 0.5% or as much as 5%. I certainly wouldn't count on any of them as locks on Election Day though Obama appears to improving his standing in Ohio in the last few days for some reason.
Indiana- I'm being conservative and leaving it in McCain's column, it might have tipped slightly to Obama though. This would be the real landslide state though and I believe its polls close at 7 Eastern so you might get a good idea how the night will go based on early returns there.
Montana/North Dakota- Look to be tight races but there's not much polling for either state.
Georgia- It looks like Obama is still down but the race will probably hinge on black turnout. If it's high, 29-32%, Obama could win.
Arizona- Surprisingly, McCain appears to be struggling in his home state. The last 3 polls have him up just 2, 4, and 5 though I doubt Obama will win.

Changes since 10/20:
Arizona moves from McCain 8+ to McCain 5-8
Indiana moves from McCain 2-5 to McCain < 2
Missouri moves from Obama 2-5 to Obama < 2
Montana moves from McCain 5-8 to McCain 2-5
New Hampshire moves from Obama 8+ to Obama 5-8
North Carolina moves from Obama 2-5 to Obama < 2
North Dakota moves from McCain 5-8 to McCain 2-5
Ohio moves from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-5

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[260] Obama 8+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Iowa (7), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Jersey (15), New Mexico (5), New York (31), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11), Wisconsin (10)
[26] Obama 5-8: Colorado (9), New Hampshire (4), Virginia (13)
[25] Obama 2-5: Nevada (5), Ohio (20)
[53] Obama < 2: Florida (27), Missouri (11), North Carolina (15)
[11] McCain < 2: Indiana (11)
[6] McCain 2-5: Montana (3), North Dakota (3)
[30] McCain 5-8: Arizona (10), Georgia (15), West Virginia (5)
[127] McCain 8+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

8+: Obama 260, McCain 127
5+: Obama 286, McCain 157
2+: Obama 311, McCain 163
Total: Obama 364, McCain 174
 
 
22 October 2008 @ 02:04 pm
"I think she's the most qualified of anyone recently who has run for vice president to tell you the truth," - John McCain.

The strangest thing about this campaign has been McCain's insistence on his extreme exaggerations when defending the choice of Sarah Palin. His straight talk on the issue is about as straight as a runner in a dizzy bat race.
Tags: ,
 
 
20 October 2008 @ 11:34 pm
State of the Race 10/20:

15 days to go, switching to Monday updates so the last one will be the day before the election. Basically the race has come down to this. Obama appears to have a strong lead in 264 electoral votes. That means he needs just 6 more to win the election (5 to tie and take it to the House and probably win a brutal fight). At this point, Obama is also doing quite well in Virginia and Colorado, either one of which would clinch the election. He's also winning in other states so he just needs to hold one of them, the one would presumably be in Colorado or Virginia though. Obama's lead appears to have slipped off the peak but it's still strong and McCain needs a big shift to get to 270. Keep in mind given the volatility of polling that you really can't trust much so it's probably best to view the race in the 264 + 1 more state scenario than getting too hung up on polling averages. I'm also changing the # system to 8+, 5-8, 2-5, and less than 2.

Changes since 10/15:
Florida moves from Obama 2-5 to Obama < 2
North Carolina moves from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-5
Ohio moves from Obama 2-5 to Obama < 2
Virginia moves from Obama 2-5 to Obama 5-8
West Virginia moves from McCain 2-5 to McCain 5-8

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[264] Obama 8+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Iowa (7), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), New Jersey (15), New Mexico (5), New York (31), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11), Wisconsin (10)
[22] Obama 5-8: Colorado (9), Virginia (13)
[31] Obama 2-5: Missouri (11), Nevada (5), North Carolina (15)
[47] Obama < 2: Florida (27), Ohio (20)
[0] McCain < 2:
[11] McCain 2-5: Indiana (11)
[26] McCain 5-8: Georgia (15), Montana (3), North Dakota (3), West Virginia (5)
[137] McCain 8+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

8+: Obama 264, McCain 137
5+: Obama 286, McCain 163
2+: Obama 317, McCain 174
Total: Obama 364, McCain 174
 
 
14 October 2008 @ 07:13 pm
State of the Race 10/15:

Three weeks to go and Obama still holds a commanding lead. I imagine tomorrow's debate will probably be the beginning of the end for McCain if nothing major happens.

Changes since 10/8:
Colorado moves from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Iowa moves from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Michigan moves from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Missouri moves from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
North Dakota moves from McCain 10+ to McCain 6-10
Ohio moves from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
Wisconsin moves from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[241] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Iowa (7), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), Michigan (17), New Jersey (15), New York (31), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11), Wisconsin (10)
[32] Obama 6-10: Colorado (9), Maine (4), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), New Mexico (5)
[76] Obama 2-6: , Florida (27), Missouri (11), Nevada (5), Ohio (20), Virginia (13)
[15] Obama < 2: North Carolina (15)
[0] McCain < 2:
[16] McCain 2-6: Indiana (11), West Virginia (5)
[61] McCain 6-10: Arkansas (6), Georgia (15), Montana (3), North Dakota (3), Texas (34)
[97] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 241, McCain 97
6+: Obama 273, McCain 158
2+: Obama 349, McCain 174
Total: Obama 364, McCain 174
 
 
 
07 October 2008 @ 05:34 pm
State of the Race 10/8:

Doing this early because I'm busy tomorrow. Another week, more gains for Obama. The election is 4 weeks from today so still plenty of time but it will probably take a real change to turn this election.

Changes since 10/1:
Florida moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
Minnesota moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Missouri moved from McCain < 2 to Obama < 2
Nevada moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
New Hampshire moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 6-10
New Jersey moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Pennsylvania moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Texas moved from McCain 10+ to McCain 6-10
Wisconsin moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[207] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New Jersey (15), New York (31), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)
[57] Obama 6-10: Iowa (7), Maine (4), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), New Mexico (5), Wisconsin (10)
[54] Obama 2-6: Colorado (9), Florida (27), Nevada (5), Virginia (13)
[46] Obama < 2: Missouri (11), North Carolina (15), Ohio (20)
[0] McCain < 2:
[16] McCain 2-6: Indiana (11), West Virginia (5)
[58] McCain 6-10: Arkansas (6), Georgia (15), Montana (3), Texas (34)
[100] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 207, McCain 100
6+: Obama 264, McCain 158
2+: Obama 318, McCain 174
Total: Obama 364, McCain 174
 
 
05 October 2008 @ 06:35 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xyDc8mlJ50

My 3rd attempt at an ad for Obama.
 
 
01 October 2008 @ 05:06 pm
State of the Race 10/1:

Just 34 days til the election and Obama is taking a commanding lead. It might recede of course but it's looking good at the moment. The combination of the McCain convention bump disappearing, people turning against Sarah Palin, and greater trust in Obama on the economy seems to be causing a major surge. It will be interesting to see if Wisconsin and Minnesota move back to solid Obama when they are polled since they haven't been checked very recently.

Changes since 9/24:
Arkansas moved from McCain 10+ to McCain 6-10
Florida moved from McCain 2-6 to Obama < 2
Georgia moved from McCain 10+ to McCain 6-10
Michigan moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Missouri moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain < 2
Nevada moved from McCain < 2 to Obama < 2
New Hampshire moved from McCain < 2 to Obama < 2
New Mexico moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
North Carolina moved from McCain < 2 to Obama < 2
Ohio moved from McCain 2-6 to Obama < 2
Oregon moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Pennsylvania moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Virginia moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
Washington moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[171] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Oregon (7), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)
[64] Obama 6-10: Iowa (7), Maine (4), Michigan (17), New Jersey (15), New Mexico (5), Pennsylvania (21),
[47] Obama 2-6: Colorado (9), Minnesota (10), Virginia (13), Wisconsin (10)
[71] Obama < 2: Florida (27), Nevada (5), New Hampshire (4), North Carolina (15), Ohio (20)
[11] McCain < 2: Missouri (11)
[16] McCain 2-6: Indiana (11), West Virginia (5)
[24] McCain 6-10: Arkansas (6), Georgia (15), Montana (3)
[134] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 171, McCain 134
6+: Obama 235, McCain 158
2+: Obama 282, McCain 174
Total: Obama 353, McCain 185
 
 
30 September 2008 @ 11:45 am
http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/30/mccain-palin-the-next-clinton-or-reagan/

McCain: Palin the next Clinton or Reagan
From CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

(CNN) – Sarah Palin may just be the next Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton — two previous governors underestimated by the national media who went on to win the White House, John McCain said Monday.

Appearing alongside Palin in an interview on CBS, McCain reiterated his confidence in the Alaska governor, even as several conservatives suggested she is unqualified for the No. 2 spot on a national ticket.

"This is not the first time that I've seen a governor being questioned by some quote, 'expert,' " McCain told CBS' Katie Couric as Palin looked on. "I remember that Ronald Reagan was a 'cowboy.' President Clinton was a governor of a very small state that had 'no experience' either. I remember how easy it was going to be for Bush I to defeat him.

"But the point is I've seen underestimation before," McCain added. "I'm very proud of the excitement that Gov. Palin has ignited with our party and around this country. It is a level of excitement and enthusiasm, frankly, that I haven't seen before. And I'd like to attribute it to me. But the fact is that she has done incredible job. And I'm so proud of the work that she's doing."

The comments come after Palin's widely panned interview with Couric last week during which the Republican VP candidate struggled through several answers on her foreign policy credentials and the proposed economic bailout. The comments instantly became fodder for late-night comedians and prompted criticism from several conservative corners that Palin appeared to be in over her head. But a counter-chorus has also emerged, as supporters have publicly urged the campaign not to keep Palin so isolated from the media and to allow her unfiltered audience interaction.

“Holding Sarah Palin to just three interviews and microscopically focusing on each interview I think has been a mistake,” former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney told MSNBC’s "Morning Joe" on Monday. “I think they'd be a lot wiser to let Sarah Palin be Sarah Palin. Let her talk to the media, let her talk to people."

But also in the interview with Couric on Monday, McCain decried "gotcha" journalism as he sought to downplay Palin's recent comments that suggested she would support crossing into Pakistan from the Afghanistan to root out terrorists.

"I understand this day and age of "gotcha" journalism, was that a pizza place?" McCain said regarding where Palin made the comments. "In a conversation with someone who you didn't hear … the question very well, you don't know the context of the conversation, grab a phrase. Gov. Palin and I agree that you don't announce that you're going to attack another country."

The comments came during Palin's visit to a cheesesteak restaurant in Philadelphia on Saturday night, when a voter asked if she supported a cross-border attack on Pakistan

"If that's what we have to do stop the terrorists from coming any further in, absolutely, we should," Palin responded, in comments that contradict McCain's long-standing position of consulting with Pakistan before carrying out attacks on terrorists within its borders.
 
 
28 September 2008 @ 09:53 pm
How dare you accuse Sarah Palin of thinking something just because she says it when asked about the topic. As it turns out, when she says something, it may or may not be her position on the topic depending on whether John McCain likes it.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/28/mccain-retracts-palins-pakistan-comments/

WASHINGTON (CNN)— Sen. John McCain retracted Sarah Palin's stance on Pakistan Sunday morning, after the Alaska governor appeared to back Sen. Barack Obama's support for unilateral strikes inside Pakistan against terrorists

"She would not…she understands and has stated repeatedly that we're not going to do anything except in America's national security interest," McCain told ABC's George Stephanopoulos of Palin. "In all due respect, people going around and… sticking a microphone while conversations are being held, and then all of a sudden that's—that's a person's position… This is a free country, but I don't think most Americans think that that's a definitve policy statement made by Governor Palin."

Saturday night, while on a stop for cheesesteaks in South Philadelphia, Palin was questioned by a Temple graduate student about whether the U.S. should cross the border from Afghanistan into Pakistan.

"If that's what we have to do stop the terrorists from coming any further in, absolutely, we should," Palin said.

During Friday night's presidential debate in Mississippi, Obama took a similar stance and condemned the Bush administration for failing to act on the possibility terrorists are in Pakistan.

"Nobody talked about attacking Pakistan," Obama said after McCain accused the Illinois senator of wanting to announce an invasion. "If the United States has al Qaeda, bin Laden, top-level lieutenants in our sights, and Pakistan is unable or unwilling to act, then we should take them out."

McCain emphasized Sunday, Palin "shares" his view on the matter.
 
 
25 September 2008 @ 10:14 am
State of the Race 9/24:

Sorry for the late post. As expected, the numbers have started to shift back towards Obama but there's still some uncertainty in that Rust Belt area that helps McCain.

Changes since 9/17:
Colorado moved from McCain < 2 to Obama 2-6
Maine moved from Obama 10+ to Obama 6-10
Nevada moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain < 2
New Hampshire moved from Obama < 2 to McCain < 2
New Mexico moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
North Carolina moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain < 2
Oregon moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Pennsylvania moved from Obama < 2 to Obama 2-6
Washington moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
West Virginia moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 2-6

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[153] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3)
[44] Obama 6-10: Iowa (7), Maine (4), New Jersey (15), Oregon (7), Washington (11)
[72] Obama 2-6: Colorado (9), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Mexico (5), Pennsylvania (21), Wisconsin (10)
[13] Obama < 2: Virginia (13)
[24] McCain < 2: Nevada (5), New Hampshire (4), North Carolina (15)
[74] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), Missouri (11), Ohio (20), West Virginia (5)
[3] McCain 6-10: Montana (3)
[155] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Georgia (15), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 153, McCain 155
6+: Obama 197, McCain 158
2+: Obama 269, McCain 232
Total: Obama 282, McCain 256
 
 
18 September 2008 @ 03:52 pm
...call your opponent a traitor.

Congrats Steve Schmidt, you've joined the list of people openly calling Barack Obama a traitor. Bonus points because it's about the economy and not foreign policy.

"I think as the American people prepare to make their choice in this election, they are likely to give consideration to the fact that the Obama campaign is cheerleading this [economic] crisis."- Steve Schmidt, McCain advisor and implementor of the "Win every 24 hour news cycle at any cost no matter how outrageous the lie" strategy.

I would LOVE to see 1 quote from any member of the Obama campaign that cheerleads the economic crisis or comes anywhere close.
 
 
17 September 2008 @ 06:09 pm
State of the Race 9/17:

It looks like Obama has turned the corner and is moving back into a small lead so things should continue to shift. Most likely, the state polling data is a little behind as it's done less frequently than national polling. I would expect the race will return to where it was before the conventions as we head into the debates. As of this week's update though, there are a lot of changes, mostly toward McCain based on his recent bump.

Changes since 9/10:
Colorado moved from Obama < 2 to McCain < 2
Georgia moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 10+
Iowa moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama 6-10
Missouri moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 2-6
Nevada moved from McCain < 2 to McCain 2-6
New Mexico moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama < 2
North Dakota moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 10+
Ohio moved from McCain < 2 to McCain 2-6
Oregon moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6
Pennsylvania moved from Obama 2-6 to Obama < 2
South Dakota moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 10+
Virginia moved from McCain 2-6 to Obama < 2
Washington moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[157] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3)
[22] Obama 6-10: Iowa (7), New Jersey (15)
[55] Obama 2-6: Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), Oregon (7), Washington (11), Wisconsin (10)
[43] Obama < 2: New Hampshire (4), New Mexico (5), Pennsylvania (21), Virginia (13)
[9] McCain < 2: Colorado (9)
[89] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), Missouri (11), Nevada (5), North Carolina (15), Ohio (20)
[8] McCain 6-10: Montana (3), West Virginia (5)
[155] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Georgia (15), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 157, McCain 155
6+: Obama 179, McCain 163
2+: Obama 234, McCain 252
Total: Obama 277, McCain 261
 
 
17 September 2008 @ 02:10 pm
From Time's the Page...

The Alaska Governor tells Fox News’ Hannity in an interview that the Democrats launched are unfairly targeting her running mate for saying the “fundamentals of our economy are strong.”
“It was an unfair attack on the verbiage that Senator McCain chose to use…He means our workforce. He means the ingenuity of the American people and of course that is strong and that is the foundation of our economy.”


Leave it to McCain/Palin to make a stupid statement and back it up with an even worse explanation.

Nobody with even the slightest bit of objectivity is going to buy their retroactive pandering bullshit.

They could've at least given a better attempt than "I meant our workers."
 
 
16 September 2008 @ 08:10 pm
Obama hits McCain hard in a new economy ad...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6reQLzgywzk

I have no idea why McCain keeps repeating this line. If he's going to keep saying it, he should at least explain what it means and don't give us any bullshit about how he means "The American workers."
 
 
14 September 2008 @ 10:53 am
PALIN'S 'BRIDGE TO NOWHERE' LINE RETURNS
Posted: Saturday, September 13, 2008 10:49 PM by Mark Murray
Filed Under: 2008, Palin

From NBC/NJ's Matthew E. Berger
CARSON CITY, Nev. -- In her first solo campaign rally outside of Alaska, Gov. Sarah Palin drew an enthusiastic crowd at the Pony Express Pavilion Saturday and returned to a familiar refrain about the “Bridge to Nowhere.”

Palin has come under fire in recent days for misleadingly saying she told Congress “thanks but no thanks,” refusing an earmark for a bridge to a sparsely inhabited island in her home state. Independent groups and media fact-checkers have said Palin advocated for the federal earmark before opposing it, only ended after Congress had essentially killed it, and kept the $223 million for the appropriation after the project was killed.

Palin had cut the refrain from her speech during her three-day visit to Alaska. But she came back to it today, citing it as an example of earmark reform she and McCain would push for in the White House.

“I told Congress thanks but no thanks to that Bridge to Nowhere -- that if our state wanted to build that bridge, we would build it ourselves," she said.
Tags: ,
 
 
12 September 2008 @ 07:04 pm
The Chicken Littles of the Democratic party can take solace in at least one fact, a number of pollsters may be underestimating Obama's support by using a poor likely voter model. Some polls are done purely among registered voters while others incorporate some sort of model to determine which poll respondents are "likely voters" and report that data.

Recent USA Today/Gallup polls have been particularly guilty of this as McCain's numbers have gone up 6 and 7 % among likely voters compared to registered voters which is ridiculous given the small size of the sample. It means those deemed registered but unlikely to vote heavily favor Obama. If their models are wrong, that's a lot of support Obama has that isn't showing up.

For example, Marist released a poll for New Jersey a few hours ago. The result was reported as Obama 48, McCain 45. This is a bad result for Obama who has mostly led by high single digits in New Jersey. However, among registered voters, Obama leads 47-40. Looking at the data, it means the following.

Registered Voters (805 respondents): Obama 47 (378 respondents) to McCain 40 (322 respondents)
Likely Voters (584 voters): Obama 48 (280 respondents) to McCain 45 (263 respondents)

Registered BUT Deemed Unlikely Voters: Obama 44 (98 respondents) to McCain 27 (59 respondents)

That's a 17 point lead among those who have been tossed from the sample. Given Obama's great organizing skill as shown in the Democratic primaries, there's at least a decent chance these likely voter models are underestimating his support and could lead to a surprising boost on election day. I would advise examining poll results for any ridiculous looking disparities between registered and likely voters. Anything higher than 3 or 4 points probably means they're using a likely voter model that is discriminating against Obama too much.
 
 
12 September 2008 @ 06:22 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zAbeu3v3Wc

Barack Obama is tired of the bullshit. Is America?
 
 
12 September 2008 @ 09:09 am
From AP:

"John McCain's campaign keeps telling voters that Sarah Palin opposed a federally funded Bridge to Nowhere that, in fact, she originally supported. It accuses Democrat Barack Obama of calling Palin a pig, which did not happen.

Even in a political culture accustomed to truth-stretching, McCain's skirting of facts has stood out this week. It has infuriated and flustered Barack Obama's campaign, and campaign pros are watching to see how much voters disregard news reports noting factual holes in the claims."

Will America allow itself to be fooled for the 3rd consecutive election? 8 weeks to go, time will tell.
 
 
11 September 2008 @ 06:19 pm
What the hell is wrong with John McCain? Every day he gets more and more ridiculous. First he makes the outrageous claim about her energy credentials and then joins the list of absolute morons who think Alaska's proximity to Russia is foreign policy experience.

"Asked what specific national security credentials Palin had, McCain cited her experience dealing with energy issues and went so far as to say she was the country's foremost expert in the field.

'She knows more about energy than probably anyone else in the United States of America,' McCain said.

McCain also pointed out that Palin governed a state that neighbors Russia."


Between this and his willingness to let his campaign sanctimoniously react to that BS lipstick on a pig story, this man has become a total disgrace. I sincerely hope that if he wins, he brings back at least a modicum of integrity because his campaign is currently sorely lacking it.
 
 
10 September 2008 @ 05:24 pm
State of the Race 9/10:

Given the volatility due to the VP picks and conventions, state polling may not be entirely accurate at this point, but for the purpose of this exercise, I'm going to take it into account as if it's generally legitimate. Having said that, don't be surprised if McCain looks good now and it recedes in the near future as his convention bump recedes. Also keep in mind that some states might be where they are simply because there is insufficient recent data.

Changes since 8/27:
Alaska moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 10+
Montana moved from McCain <2 to McCain 6-10
North Dakota moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain 6-10
South Dakota moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain 6-10
Virginia moved from McCain <2 to McCain 2-6
Washington moved from Obama 10+ to Obama 6-10

Obama/Biden vs McCain/Palin:
[157] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3)
[33] Obama 6-10: New Jersey (15), Oregon (7), Washington (11)
[70] Obama 2-6: Iowa (7), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Mexico (5), Pennsylvania (21), Wisconsin (10)
[13] Obama < 2: Colorado (9), New Hampshire 4)
[25] McCain < 2: Nevada (5), Ohio (20)
[66] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13)
[82] McCain 6-10: Georgia (15), Missouri (11), Montana (3), North Dakota (3), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Texas (34), West Virginia (5)
[92] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 157, McCain 92
6+: Obama 190, McCain 174
2+: Obama 260, McCain 240
Total: Obama 273, McCain 265
 
 
05 September 2008 @ 09:14 pm
Rudy Giuliani on Barack Obama...

"He's never run a city, never run a state, never run a business. He's never had to lead people in crisis."

Rudy Giuliani on John McCain...

"He has never run city, never run a state, never run a government. He has never been responsible as a mayor for the safety and security of millions of people"

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/Vote2008/Story?id=3851631&page=3

That executive experience argument proved to be awesome in the primaries so I guess he's doubling down on it.

Credit: Daily Kos
 
 
04 September 2008 @ 10:27 am
So last night, Mike Huckabee gave us this huge non-sequitur that he's tired of hearing about Sarah Palin's lack of experience and that Sarah Palin got more votes running for Mayor of Wasilla than Joe Biden did running for President. As if that wasn't irrelevant enough, it's also not even true...

"FACT CHECK: BIDEN, ALMOST 80,000 VOTES
Posted: Wednesday, September 03, 2008 9:51 PM by Domenico Montanaro
Filed Under: 2008, Biden, Huckabee, Republican convention

From NBC's Domenico Montanaro
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Mike Huckabee made the claim that Palin got more votes running for mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, than Joe Biden got running for president of the United States.

For the record, Joe Biden got 79,754 total votes in the Democratic primaries.

As of the 2000 census, the population of Wasilla was 5,469. It has been reported at currently more than 9,000.

That would mean, conservatively, the entire town of Wasilla would have had to have had a 100% turnout for nine years at 9,000 to top Biden's primary numbers."


I guess by Mike Huckabee's standards, Barack Obama has TONS of experience because he got 18 million votes in the Democratic primary. Congrats Huckster, you've joined Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani on the complete disregard for the truth list.

For the record, I've been generally ignoring the Republican Convention because listening to Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney should be added to the list of things that are considered torture.
 
 
02 September 2008 @ 06:21 pm
There's no changes in the State of the Race this week. However, Obama has had a nice surge in national numbers this week so presumably states are moving but there is no actual state polling data to support making any moves. It really doesn't matter because this could just be a temporary bump in which case the numbers would fall back down anyway. In a few weeks, after things calm down, that'll be a good baseline number to see where the race stands heading into the debates which will potentially cause a major shift again heading into the election. I can only guess that the debates will help Obama but you never know. If George W Bush, Killer of the Spoken Word, can win an election after 3 debates 2 consecutive times, anyone can.

McCain came out with his pick of Sarah Palin and frankly it was an astoundingly pathetic pick. It really invalidated the last 6 months of the campaign as he had gone and gone about Obama isn't ready. So who does he pick? Someone who, at best, is equally experienced as Obama. It shows a real cynicism and lack of priorities to pick someone who appears purely aimed at helping him win over right wingers and disaffected Clinton women. I don't see how he could possibly defend her as a smart choice over someone like Lindsey Graham who fulfills all of the somewhat nonsensical guidelines that had been put down prior to the pick.

People are trying to pick apart Sarah Palin and debate whether she's actually more experienced than Obama but the bottom line is that John McCain was insanely hypocritical in making the pick and it shows the kind of shoot from the hip decision making policy he'd have as Commander in Chief. It's not unlike his other recent blunders like demanding we kick Russia out of the G8 or making jokes about Iran. Snap judgments are not the kind needed after 8 years of a president who goes with his gut over rational decision making.

The Palin pick was so horrendous that it's led to recent defenses of her including that she has foreign policy experience because Alaska is next to Russia (Credit: Cindy McCain and FOX News' Steve Doocy), that it's okay that she has no experience because she's going to learn under a master (Credit: McCain Advisor, Rick Davis), that she has more experience than both Barack Obama and Joe Biden because she has executive experience (Credit: Minnesota Rep Bachman), and that she actually has 16 years of experience because that's when her political career started (Credit: John McCain).

Let's examine those brain teasers.
1. Alaska is next to Russia.- Need I say more?
2. Learn under the master- Did they really just the vice presidency is an internship? Who was the last successful intern vice president? Quayle? Agnew? They worked out well.
3. Executive experience- So if the only experience that counts is executive experience, then guess who has no experience at all? John McCain.
4. 16 years of experience- Wow, 16 years is a long time. What job did she enter 16 years ago? Wasilla, Alaska City Council. She did that for 4 years before making the big step up to mayor of Wasilla. She had approximately 5,000 constituents, about the size of a poorly attended Barack Obama rally. That was another 6 years. The next 4 years weren't even spent in elected office and finally she's in her 2nd year as Governor of Alaska. So of those 16 years, she has almost 2 in a position that has as many constituents as 25% of the city of Chicago.

But surely this woman has accomplishments, right? John McCain says she's a proven reformer, an up and coming star in his image you might say.

She opposed the Bridge to Nowhere project that wasted hundreds of millions of dollars. Actually, she staunchly supported it. Then later she finally backed down from that but kept the money anyway.

She opposes pork like John McCain. Actually, as mayor and governor, she's helped bring millions of dollars in pork to Alaska.

She cuts taxes. Okay, actually she raised taxes and raised government spending.

She's ethical. Well, actually she has an ongoing investigation against her for possibly abusing her power to fire someone for personal reasons. BUT BUT she hasn't been convicted so she's still ethical!

Anything else? Nope, but she's an executive, and that's all that matters.

What's the real reason Republicans support her? She checks all their boxes. Just like George W Bush, it's not about how smart you are, or if you're honorable, or if you're competent, just please check their boxes. What do I mean? Pro-Christian religion, pro-gun, pro-life, pro-saying you'll cut taxes even if you won't, pro-Scaliaesque Supreme Court justices, and the new one...pro-drilling. You could kill a puppy on live TV and they'd still vote for you if you check their boxes and she does it, so she's got the seal of approval.



 
 
27 August 2008 @ 12:28 pm
State of the Race 8/27:

Changes since 8/20:
Missouri moves from McCain 2-6 to McCain 6-10
New Hampshire moves from Obama 2-6 to Tossup
Pennsylvania moves from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6

Obama vs McCain 8/27:
[168] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)
[32] Obama 6-10: New Jersey (15), Oregon (7), Wisconsin (10)
[60] Obama 2-6: Iowa (7), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Mexico (5), Pennsylvania (21)
[54] Tossup (Lead < 2): Colorado (9), Montana (3), Nevada (5), New Hampshire (4), Ohio (20), Virginia (13)
[59] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), North Carolina (15), North Dakota (3), South Dakota (3)
[76] McCain 6-10: Alaska (3), Georgia (15), Missouri (11), South Carolina (8), Texas (34), West Virginia (5)
[89] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 168, McCain 89, Tossup 281
6+: Obama 200, McCain 165, Tossup 173
2+: Obama 260, McCain 224, Tossup 54
 
 
19 August 2008 @ 08:28 pm
State of the Race 8/20:

Things are not going well for Obama lately. I guess we'll see if the VP announcements and conventions stop the bleeding. For the first time in a while, Obama does not reach 270 without tossups.

Changes since 8/6:
Colorado moved from Obama 2-6 to Tossup
Iowa moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6
Minnesota moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6

Obama vs McCain 8/20:
[168] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)
[53] Obama 6-10: New Jersey (15), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Wisconsin (10)
[43] Obama 2-6: Iowa (7), Michigan (17), Minnesota (10), New Mexico (5), New Hampshire (4)
[50] Tossup (Lead < 2): Colorado (9), Montana (3), Nevada (5), Ohio (20), Virginia (13)
[70] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), Missouri (11), North Carolina (15), North Dakota (3), South Dakota (3)
[65] McCain 6-10: Alaska (3), Georgia (15), South Carolina (8), Texas (34), West Virginia (5)
[89] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 168, McCain 89, Tossup 281
6+: Obama 221, McCain 154, Tossup 163
2+: Obama 264, McCain 224, Tossup 50
 
 
12 August 2008 @ 10:01 pm

Busy day tomorrow so I'll just post now that there are no changes in the State of the Race this week. The only state which approached a change is Iowa but for now I'm leaving it just barely in the Obama 6-10 column. Among states which are considered +2 for one candidate or the other, the race remains Obama 273, McCain 224, Tossup 41.

 
 
11 August 2008 @ 01:50 pm
Taking another look at the VP list, though not much has changed. Interestingly, those who appear to want the job generally seem to be less worthy of being picked than many of those who don't. Only a few in the top 10 seem open to being chosen, though it's possible others are just playing it safe and would accept if asked. As for the Republicans, I'm sticking with Romney. The only way McCain wins, barring a huge Obama collapse, is to play the electoral map well and he needs to at least take the shot with Romney for New Hampshire, Michigan, and the Mountain West.

10. Wes Clark (General, Arkansas)- He's a tough one. There is of course the military background and lack of Washington stain which is a good combination. However, there's also his uninspiring 2004 campaign and the comment about McCain that got blown out of proportion last month. It could work but I'm not sold either way.
9. Sherrod Brown (Current Senator, Ohio)- He opposed the war as a Congressman and has the right home state but his protectionist leanings may paint the Democratic ticket as too anti-trade. I'm not really sure what the country's mood on NAFTA is at this point. He also seems to be unwilling to take the position.
8. Jack Reed (Current Senator, Rhode Island)- One of those guys where you wonder if it'd be a good idea given he looks like a blatant "Look I got my own Dick Cheney" but who knows. He doesn't seem to want the job but he and Obama do seem to get along well.
7. Brian Schweitzer (Current Governor, Montana)- He's cruising to re-election and probably wouldn't take the job but he's a good governor and has the kind of folksy John Edwards charm without all the baggage. Of course, they'd try to tag him like Obama as inexperienced and lacking foreign policy credentials but frankly it's either going to be that or "how is he an agent of change?" anyway. McCain's campaign surely has their dual press releases ready to attack whoever the pick is as a bad one.
6. Russ Feingold (Current Senator, Wisconsin)- I don't think he wants the job and has had a few too many kind words to say about McCain lately but I think he's a good Senator who has an independent streak that overcomes partisanship. He probably wouldn't play as well electorally but I think he's qualified.
5. Phil Bredesen (Current Governor, Tennessee)- I haven't mentioned him much before but there would be some value in picking a popular Southern governor. If Mark Warner won't do it, Bredesen appears to be the best choice among the rest of the Southern states. He has a more impressive record than Tim Kaine though obviously in a less competitive state. He's been governor for 5 1/2 years and founded HealthAmerica Corp, a successful company. In the mold of Mike Bloomberg, he doesn't accept a salary as governor because of his wealth accrued in business which is a nice talking point for his character. His "openness and accountability" governing style would play well with Obama's message. Of course, the negative is no foreign policy experience but nobody has it all.
4. Evan Bayh (Former Governor/Current Senator, Indiana)- He's the safe pick of the bunch in terms of rocking the boat but a lot of liberals dislike him and perhaps there's a reason why he's always considered for VP but never picked.
3. Joe Biden (Current Senator, Delaware)- Has generally had his gaffes and rambling under control and offers a solid voice on foreign policy. He's at the top of my list of people who appear to have a realistic chance of being picked.
2. Ted Strickland (Former Congressman/Current Governor, Ohio)- He has never showed a hint of interest in the job but given his opposition to the war, swing state home, and current position outside Washington, he'd be a good choice. One negative is that I believe his approval in Ohio is not exactly high at the moment.
1. Mark Warner (Former Governor, Virginia)- It appears he's still unwilling to be the pick and there have been no rumblings about Obama currently considering him but I still think he's the easy #1 choice. Obviously his perceived flaw will be lack of foreign policy experience but it's hard to argue with a very popular governor with a good record in business and on the economy.
 
 
08 August 2008 @ 10:59 pm
It's nice how politics has helped us define the level of punishment and statute of limitations for infidelity.
 
Had a recent affair? You're a disgrace and need to go away. (John Edwards)
Had a recent affair with a prostitute? You can no longer be Governor (Eliot Spitzer) BUT you can still be a Senator (David Vitter).
Had an affair in the 90s? You get to speak on Wednesday at the Democratic Convention. (Bill Clinton)
Had an affair in the 70s? You get to be the Republican nominee for President. (John McCain)
Had an affair in the 60s? You're a beloved President. (John F Kennedy)
 
 
08 August 2008 @ 11:41 am

First, an update on my Obama/Reagan video; it's now over 45,000 views since Sunday.

Second, I have a new video posted yesterday that's around 8000.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7-LuJtOs1U

It was also posted by Andrew Sullivan...

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/08/taking-back-t-3.html

Third, Happy Anniversary to John McCain. Today marks 4 months since he last cast a vote in the US Senate. Given the current recess, I assume he's going to push that to at least 5. You're doing a heck of a job, Johnny.

 
 
06 August 2008 @ 05:23 pm
 State of the Race 8/6:

Changes since 7/23:
Alaska moved from McCain 2-6 to McCain 6-10
Arizona moved from McCain 6-10 to McCain 10+
Delaware moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 10+
Florida moved from Tossup to McCain 2-6
Michigan moved from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6
Minnesota moved from Obama 10+ to Obama 6-10
Montana moved from McCain 2-6 to Tossup

Obama vs McCain 8/6:
[168] Obama 10+: California (55), Connecticut (7), DC (3), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)
[70] Obama 6-10: Iowa (7), Minnesota (10), New Jersey (15), Oregon (7), Pennsylvania (21), Wisconsin (10)
[35] Obama 2-6: Colorado (9), Michigan (17), New Mexico (5), New Hampshire (4)
[41] Tossup (Lead < 2): Montana (3), Nevada (5), Ohio (20), Virginia (13)
[70] McCain 2-6: Florida (27), Indiana (11), Missouri (11), North Carolina (15), North Dakota (3), South Dakota (3)
[65] McCain 6-10: Alaska (3), Georgia (15), South Carolina (8), Texas (34), West Virginia (5)
[89] McCain 10+: Alabama (9), Arizona (10), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), Wyoming (3)

10+: Obama 168, McCain 89, Tossup 281
6+: Obama 238, McCain 154, Tossup 146

2+: Obama 273, McCain 224, Tossup 41
 
 
04 August 2008 @ 07:06 pm

My response to John McCain's celebrity ad, now with 10,553 views in the 1st 24 hours and posted on:

Daily Kos:
http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/8/4/13939/68053/101/562302

Andrew Sullivan:
http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/08/reagan-and-obam.html

Politico's Ben Smith:
http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0808/Remainders_Pray_for_rain.html?showall

(Original link to my upload)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfKXVDbvkoQ

 
 
03 August 2008 @ 05:10 pm

My response to John McCain's celebrity ad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfKXVDbvkoQ

 
 
30 July 2008 @ 05:45 pm
No full update this week due to lack of polls and state movement. The only state that moved was Michigan from Obama 6-10 to Obama 2-6.
 
 
29 July 2008 @ 09:56 pm
http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2008/06/heilemann_on_obamas_vp_conundrum.html

"On the one hand, nobody in Obama’s inner circle disputes the notion that opting for a V.P. with major foreign-policy/national-security chops would be extremely desirable given the nominee’s lack of experience in that area. On the other, everyone agrees that Obama’s sidekick should reinforce his brand as an agent of change. This is not an easy circle to square: Where exactly does one find a running mate untainted by Old Politics, an outsider who represents a clean break with the past and embodies transformative potential, but who also happens to be (to borrow a phrase) ready from day one to be commander-in-chief?"- John Heilemann 

I was going to write a very similar thing myself, but this quote I found while looking for Obama quotes on the subject pretty much encapsulates what I was going to say. At the core of the Biden/Bayh vs. Kaine/Sebelius debate is the obvious choice of experience vs. change. Obama's candidacy is special because his spectacular judgment and recent track record, especially on foreign policy, have shown me, and presumably those others who support him, that he is both qualified for the job and is the kind of real change that is needed. The question is how to find a vice president that embodies that same characteristic. Because Obama has his astute Iraq war opposition and simulated Presidential decision making moments on the campaign trail, he's had plenty of time and will have 3 debates to show voters that he is both judgment and change.

So how is a vice president going to do the same? Given the dearth of individuals who opposed the war in Iraq, Obama is already at a disadvantage when searching for someone to back up the key idea that opposing the war from the start was a big deal. Most of the people in the national spotlight who opposed the war are those who would be expected to oppose it on the grounds that they were left wing liberals, not that they had correctly identified the flaws in this particular war. Biden and Bayh both voted for the war which seemingly cuts into the notion that they're so qualified to be President. At the same time, they have great resumes and, for the most part, good track records. But can individuals who are creatures of the Washington that America has grown to hate really be considered agents of change? With a lot of finesse, maybe he could turn Evan Bayh's DINO (Democrat in Name Only) record on some issues into a positive by saying he cares more about governing than partisanship but it might be a tough sell.

On the other side of the spectrum are the Governors, Kaine and Sebelius. Obama likes both of them and they would probably make a good team, but are they really qualified to be President? What have they ever done to demonstrate the kind of judgment that Barack Obama possesses? Kaine's record has been unremarkable and surely would not reassure voters who are scared about Obama's lack of experience. If they think Obama hasn't done anything, wait til they meet Tim Kaine. Kathleen Sebelius was named 1 of the America's top 5 governors in 2005 by Time Magazine but she has her own problems. Her State of the Union response was considered poor, her presence on the ticket would be met with "Why not Hillary?", and she has no foreign policy experience. The real question becomes whether picking someone with foreign policy experience helps Obama by filling a gap that voters worry about or whether it accentuates the fact that Obama has little experience and makes voters go for the experience of John McCain on top of the ticket.

Unfortunately for Obama, it's a paradox. Given that his vice presidential nominee will have just a few months and 1 debate to show his or her stuff, he needs to thread the needle and find someone who oozes both qualified and outsider. I wish him luck but most likely he's going to be stuck trying to convince the media and voters into buying the notion that a Washington Insider can be an agent of change or a fresh face is truly qualified to be a heartbeat away from the presidency. Presumably the best choice for Obama would be a former high-ranking member of the military or someone with a foreign policy background who became a successful post-partisan Governor of a state (who also happens to be a white male between the ages of 45 and 60, from a swing state, a good campaigner, who gets along well with Obama, is pro-choice, opposed the Iraq war, has a high approval rating, has done a good job managing the economy, isn't gaffe prone, and doesn't have skeletons or scandals in his closet). I'm pretty sure that person doesn't exist though. Three names not listed among the "final four" that at least approach this criteria though don't meet it fully are Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, Governor Brian Schweitzer of Montana, and Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island. Schweitzer is intriguing but he's running for re-election as Governor so that perhaps takes him out of the running.
 
 
29 July 2008 @ 09:12 pm
 http://www.vawatchdog.org/08/nf08/nfJAN08/nf012108-1.htm

A nice comparison...

"
2006 Senator Obama supported the interests of the Disabled American Veterans 80 percent in 2006.

2006 In 2006 Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America gave Senator Obama a grade of B+.

2006 Senator Obama sponsored or co-sponsored 12 percent of the legislation favored by the The Retired Enlisted Association in 2006.

2005 Senator Obama supported the interests of the Disabled American Veterans 92 percent in 2005."

"2006 Senator McCain supported the interests of the Disabled American Veterans 20 percent in 2006.

2006 In 2006 Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America gave Senator McCain a grade of D.

2006 Senator McCain sponsored or co-sponsored 18 percent of the legislation favored by the The Retired Enlisted Association in 2006.

2005 Senator McCain supported the interests of the Disabled American Veterans 25 percent in 2005."
 
 
28 July 2008 @ 08:07 pm

"Suppose you had to choose between two Presidential candidates, one of whom had spent 20 years in Congress plus had considerable other relevant experience and the other of whom had about half a dozen years in the Illinois state legislature and 2 years in Congress. Which one do you think would make a better President? If you chose #1, congratulations, you picked James Buchanan over Abraham Lincoln. Your pick disagrees with that of most historians, who see Lincoln as the greatest President ever and Buchanan as the second worst ever, better only than Warren "Teapot Dome" Harding. Both served in what was probably the most difficult period in American history, where slavery and secession tore the nation asunder.

Before becoming President, Buchanan had served 6 years in the Pennsylvania state legislature, 10 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, 4 years as ambassador to Russia, 10 years in the Senate, 4 years as Secretary of State, and 4 years as Ambassador to England. Talk about experience, Buchanan did just about everything except serve on the Supreme Court, a job he was offered by President Polk and refused. Yet by any measure, he wasn't up to the job as President. In contrast, Abraham Lincoln served 8 years in the Illinois legislature and one term in the U.S. House (1847-1849), a decade before becoming President. The rest of the time he was a lawyer in private practice, a bit thin one might say."

http://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2008/Info/experience.html

Obviously this is not hard evidence but it does show how thinking purely about experience without truly evaluating candidates on talent and judgment is a bad idea.