SSP Daily Digest: 3/24

IL-10: Roll Call takes a look at the potential GOP and Dem fields to replace Rep. Mark Kirk should he decide to run for Senate. A spokesperson for ’06/’08 nominee Dan Seals says that he’s in for a third crack at the seat if Kirk vacates the scene, but state Sens. Michael Bond and Susan Garrett are also possible recruits. For the GOP, potential contenders include state Reps. Beth Coulson, JoAnn Osmond, and Ed Sullivan Jr — as well as state Sens. Dan Duffy and Matt Murphy. Coulson, perhaps the most moderate choice the GOP has to offer, might run into some problems in a GOP primary against a more conservative choice like Murphy. (J)

PA-Sen: The Republican caucus in the Pennsylvania state Senate seems reluctant to comply with Arlen Specter’s desire to allow independents to vote in closed-party primary elections. If the state ultimately leaves the primary rules as they are, Specter will face the daunting task of convincing independents and Democrats to change their party registrations over to the GOP column in order for him to gain leverage against Pat Toomey. (J)

On a very related note, Specter just announced this afternoon that he will be opposing EFCA (an about-face from his previous support for it in previous sessions). Apparently he now thinks the GOP primary is his biggest worry, not maintaining union support for the general.

MN-06: We’ll never get tired of loving Michele Bachmann. Her latest:

I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax because we need to fight back. Thomas Jefferson told us ‘having a revolution every now and then is a good thing,’ and the people – we the people – are going to have to fight back hard if we’re not going to lose our country. And I think this has the potential of changing the dynamic of freedom forever in the United States.

CO-04: Speculation is growing about who the GOP will find to take on freshman Rep. Betsy Markey in this one-time GOP stronghold turned swing district. State rep. Cory Gardner seems to generate the most buzz, who has already met with the NRCC. Other possibilities include former UC regent Tom Lucero and Ft. Collins city councilor Diggs Brown.

MI-12: Sander Levin must have had a lot of advance notice of the just-announced primary challenge from state senator Mickey Switalski, because he’s already produced an internal poll from the Mellman Group showing him demolishing Switalski. Levin beats Switalski 62-14 in a head-to-head, and maintains a 74-15 favorable rating. (Switalski’s favorables are 23-8, leaving 69% unsure.)

NH-02: Another GOPer has lined up for the open House seat left behind by Paul Hodes: Len Mannino, former Milford selectman and current school board member, is publicly expressing his interest. He’ll face an uphill fight against talk radio host Jennifer Horn, who seems to be aiming for a rematch.

CT-Sen: In 1970, Connecticut’s senior senator, beset by ethical issues (including a Senate censure) and health troubles, failed to re-claim the Democratic Party’s nomation and came in third as an independent that November. That man was Thomas Dodd, Chris Dodd’s father. Click the link for some fascinating details about his saga. And let’s hope that history doesn’t repeat – or even rhyme. (D)

TX-Gov: Todd Hill of the Burnt Orange Report sat down for an extended interview with Democratic candidate Tom Schieffer. (D)

30 thoughts on “SSP Daily Digest: 3/24”

  1. If he makes it through the Republican primary, he’s set–whether he supports EFCA or not.

    But what this means is that we absolutely have to contest the seat in November: Specter has reaffirmed his Republicanness.  

  2. Sounds like both the state house and senate have the votes to override and potential veto by Governor Douglas.

    Vermont is weighing a bill that could make it the first state to legalize same-sex marriage without being prompted by the courts.

    The state’s House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday afternoon to consider a bill that the Vermont Senate passed Monday by a vote of 26-4.

    The House is expected to pass the bill.

    Republican Gov. Jim Douglas, however, has said he opposes the bill.

    “Governor Douglas agrees with President Obama that marriage is between a man and a woman. He supports Vermont’s current civil union law, which provides equal rights, benefits, and responsibilities to Vermonters in civil unions,” said the governor’s spokeswoman, Dennise Casey.

    The governor “believes this bill is a distraction from the important work the legislature needs to do to pass a responsible budget and get our economy going again,” Casey added.

    It is unclear whether both chambers of the state legislature would vote to override a potential gubernatorial veto.

    Vermont made history in 2000 by becoming the first state to approve civil unions for gay and lesbian couples.

    Massachusetts and Connecticut are the only states that allow same-sex marriage. Vermont, New Hampshire, and New Jersey allow civil unions for gay and lesbian couples.

    Vermont legalized civil unions nine years ago in response to a ruling from its high court.

    Nationwide, the issue of same-sex marriage remains highly divisive. A June 2008 CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll found that 44 percent of adult Americans believe gay marriage should be recognized by law as valid; 53 percent are opposed.

    The issue took center stage in the nation’s largest state last November, when California voters narrowly approved a proposition amending the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage. California had been issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples since a May 2008 ruling by the state Supreme Court legalized the unions.

    California’s high court heard arguments three weeks ago in a case tackling the constitutionality of the controversial ballot proposition. It has not yet issued a decision.

    The 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act effectively bars the federal government from recognizing same-sex unions by defining marriage as “a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife” and a spouse as “a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.”

  3. I’m a foreign correspondent on enemy lines and I try to let everyone back here in Minnesota know exactly the nefarious activities that are taking place in Washington.

    This includes links to more of her “greatest hits”

  4. John Tower voted for Thomas Dodd when he had his troubles in the senate.

    Chris Dodd returned the favor voting for John Tower’s nomination as the defense secretary.

  5. At 12:00 am Monday morning, the State of Minnesota set a new record for operating at half-strength in Capitol Hill’s upper chamber.

    At 79 days and counting, Minnesota’s current stint with only one U.S. Senator has now eclipsed the previous mark set in the summer of 1923, when it took 78 days to schedule a July 16, 1923 special election for the unexpired term ending March 3, 1925 to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Republican Knute Nelson on April 28, 1923. Farmer-Laborite Magnus Johnson won that election.


    Anyone know the record for a state going with only one Senator?

  6. Someone needs to step up to the plate to take out that scumbag Specter, if he survives the primary.  Auditor General Jack Wagner would be the perfect candidate, but he might prefer to run for Governor instead.

  7. Rick Perry will upset Hutchison in the Repub primary.  And if that happens, the Democratic candidate, whether that is Schieffer or someone else stronger, will win the Governorship.  If it is Schieffer v Perry, I would not be surprised if some of Bush’s less wingnut associates in Texas backs Schieffer.

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