SSP Daily Digest: 3/24

AZ-Sen: Rep. Jeff Flake, long known for his non-insane stance on immigration, has bluntly announced that he’s flip-flopping. Just like John McCain before him, Flake says he no longer supports comprehensive immigration reform and now just wants to discuss border security. Clearly, Flake is terrified of getting teabagged in the senatorial primary, even though he doesn’t have any actual opponents yet. I suspect that Rep. Trent Franks (or someone else with strong movement conservative bona fides) will get into the race, though, and I doubt that Flake’s last-minute conversion will incline the teabaggers to forgive him.

And I also wonder if it might not tick off his patrons at the Club for Growth, who just proudly announced that they’ve raised $350K for him. The CfG is backed by people and organizations who are what you’d call “cheap labor conservatives.” That is, they prefer to see a steady flow of illegal immigrants because they represent a ready pool of workers they can cheaply exploit. The kind of immigration reform that Flake once favored also pleased his corporate masters, because it would have created a temporary worker program-almost as good, but blessed by the law! I doubt that the CfG, which pushed Flake hard to get into the race (and immediately endorsed him once he did) will abandon ship over this offense, but maybe they’ll start focusing their energies on more reliable stooges.

FL-Sen: I’m really glad that Mike Haridopolos is the only announced Republican candidate of any note because he’s such a walking train-wreck (if you can visualize such a thing)-almost every new story about him is yet another disaster. His eye for optics is particularly atrocious: In his role as President of the state Senate, he just removed a piece of ethics legislation from the body’s agenda-despite having co-sponsored the very same bill last year. Even better, you may recall that Haridopolos was just admonished by the Senate for failing to properly disclose his finances on required forms. I love this guy!

MI-Sen: A Republican firm who seems to be affiliated with ex-Rep. (and potential candidate) Pete Hoekstra, Strategic National, released bits and pieces of a survey to Dave Catanese. They claim that Dem Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s approval rating is just 30-38, in contrast with PPP’s poll from yesterday which had her at 46-39. The only head-to-head they released showed Hoekstra trailing just 41-38 (PPP has him back 50-38). To Strategic National’s credit (by the way, we’d never heard of this firm until this year), they released their sample makeup. To their discredit, the sample was 46 R, 44 D & 10 I. In other words, from Mars.

NM-Sen: Could Greg Sowards be the next Christine O’Donnell or Joe Miller? I’d be shocked if you’ve ever heard of this teabagger, but he did spent $300K of his own money to get pasted in the NM-02 primary in 2008. (He also has a fucking funny URL-just Google his name.) With “moderate” Heather Wilson the only big-time candidate in the race so far, a surprising number of winger outfits are giving Sowards a look: He’s in DC visiting with Jim DeMint’s people and the Tea Party Express, among others. Sowards also appeared to get under Rep. Steve Pearce’s skin by saying he didn’t think Pearce would run for the Senate again. Click the link for Pearce’s prickly response.

NV-Sen: Rep. Shelley Berkley (D) will be keynoting the Jefferson-Jackson dinner in rural Churchill County this Friday, which either means she’s spreading out her feelers for a statewide run, just doing someone a favor, enjoys spending time way up in the northern part of the state, or absolutely nothing.

OH-Gov: On top of spaghetti, all covered with cheese, I saw John Kasich, and his poll numbers sucked. Quinnipiac sez he’s at 30-46 approvals, while GOP-affiliated pollster We Ask America says he’s at an astoundingly bad 35-58. Q also asked about SB5 (the anti-union bill) with a couple of different wordings; either way, voters are opposed.

WV-Gov: State House Speaker Rick Thompson’s been cleaning up with the union endorsements (teachers, AFL-CIO), and now he’s racked up a huge one: the United Mine Workers of America.

AK-AL: This story is so disturbing, I won’t even attempt to summarize:

A Republican congressman from Alaska, who also is on the board of directors of the National Rifle Association, now is attempting to distance himself from a Fairbanks militia leader accused in a high-profile firearms, murder and kidnapping plot.

In April 2009, with a video camera rolling, Rep. Don Young signed a “Letter of Declaration” being circulated by the Second Amendment Task Force/Alaska Peacemakers Militia, led by Francis Schaeffer Cox. The “declaration” called on “sovereign Americans” to “alter or abolish” any government that tries to “further tax, restrict or register firearms” or prevents individuals from exercising their “God-given right to self-defense [that] precedes all human legislation.”

CA-36: Democracy for America, the activist organization that emerged from the Howard Dean campaign, is endorsing SoS Debra Bowen, though it’s not clear what kind of support they plan on providing. DFA previously endorsed Bowen when she sought re-election to her current job last year.

IL-10: Activist Ilya Sheyman posts a diary to Daily Kos, saying that he’s “considering running” against Republican Bob Dold! in Illinois’ 10th CD.

NY-01: Republican Randy Altschuler, who lost the second-closest House race in 2010 (only IL-08 was closer), will be in DC “for a series of meeting”-and that’s all Roll Call has to say about it. Supposedly this means he’s considering a rematch against Rep. Tim Bishop, but we don’t even know who his meetings are with. Maybe he’s talking to the Brewery Soft Drink Beer Distr Optical Dental Misc Workers Warehouseman Help Local 830 PAC, for all we know.

OR-01: Blue Oregon scored quite the coup: I believe they are the first local print media outfit to get an interview with Rep. David Wu. They say they talked to him for an hour, and promise that they asked tough questions. The contents of the interview will appear in a multi-part series over the next day (just as soon as they finish transcribing). You can read part one and part two now.

SC-05: I don’t think anyone was expecting that ex-Rep. John Spratt, at age 68 and with 14 terms under his belt, would seek a rematch, and indeed he’s not. At an emotional event to honor Spratt’s many years of service, he said that he might teach, or join a DC think tank, but that whatever he does, “it’ll be part-time.” Godspeed.

Mayors: Kansas City, MO elected the awesomely-named Sly James as mayor in a runoff last night; he beat fellow Dem Mike Burke 54-46. And in Tampa, Dem Bob Buckhorn crushed Republican Rose Ferlita by a 63-37 margin.

Campaign Committees: So it looks like the DCCC and NRCC are engaged in a minor skirmish, but with Rahm Emanuel gone, it seems like the Chicago Way means, you come at me with a butter knife, I come at you with a spork. Anyhow, the D-Trip announced it was targeting robocalls and a bit of other media at ten Republicans (click link for districts) regarding Social Security and Medicare, so the NRCC did the exact same thing, except about gas prices. The NRCC also released what it claims is are television ads (but what our friend Nathan Gonzales would call a “video press releases”) against Heath Shuler and Nick Rahall. I’ll bet the amount spent on these buys isn’t enough to buy John Shimkus a meatball sub.

Redistricting Roundup:

California: The new chair of the CA GOP spazzed about the selection of Q2 Data and Research as the redistricting commission’s map-drawing technical consultant, hollering that the firm has ties “to the Democrat Party.” Zing! Only problem is that the commission (which of course includes Republicans) voted 13-0 to pick Q2.

Maryland: Last year, Maryland passed new legislation requiring that, for the purposes of redistricting, the state count prisoners as residents where they last lived, rather than where they are serving their sentences. State agencies just certified a count of 22,000 prisoners, and while some Baltimore-area legislative districts gained a bit as a result, the overall effects were slight. (Side note: The US government refused to share “last known address” data concerning the 1,500 inmates incarcerated in Maryland’s lone federal prison.) The only other states with similar legislation are Delaware and New York; while this information affects local as well as state redistricting efforts, congressional redistricting is based on US Census data, and I’m pretty sure these laws don’t cover that.

Virginia: Winners were announced in the college competition to redistrict the state of Virginia. You can find the maps at the link. I don’t think they got any babka, though.

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

  1. But he is such a dick.

    Some Dudes running in the Republican primary as “the candidate from the Tea Party” make me so happy, especially in blueing states like New Mexico that President Obama is virtually certain to hold. And I would be delighted by a bald-off between Greg “Short Bald Honest” Sowards and Auditor Hector “Baldy” Balderas.

  2. He’s still got more than three and a half years to wreck the state.

    If there’s one election result from last year I could magically reverse, it would be OH-Gov. Or maybe FL-Gov–tough call.

  3. Or so it seems, anyway. She told ABC News, “I’m in.” Run, Michele!

    Perhaps she could win Iowa and maybe even South Carolina, but New Hampshire? Still, it’d be highly amusing if she became a force with a high number of delegates. And if she won the nomination, there will be a collective cheer from Democrats all over the country. She’d lose so badly to Obama that it wouldn’t be funny. She might not even crack 40 percent. Yes, she would probably do worse than Palin, if you can believe it.

  4. Wu’s staff promised 10 minutes for the interview. He was 40 minutes late. The interview lasted for an hour.

    Part 1 and 2 are pretty short, but as Kari suggests, it was his toughest questions, as Kari was thinking of the 10 minute time limit.

    As for other media outlets, Wu says he won’t talk to the Oregonian or Willamette Week. So BlueOregon is a logical alternative.

    Earlier, the guy who would probably be the strongest R candidate, Bruce Starr, said he’s not running. (Starr is the State Sen from Hillsboro, the home of the local Intel plant, at the heart of the district.)

    So I believe Wu could survive — IFF the dripping stops.

  5. “UPDATE 3 @ 3:47 PM: “We did a random sample of voters who say they are likely to vote in the 2012 election. Theirs was based on 3 years ago, when McCain pulled out of MI,” Yob said in response to PPP’s modeling.”

    And there you have it. Likely voters.

  6. “I don’t see how anyone would get between me and conservative principles.  They can go to the loon right, which is, as far as I’m concerned, like coming back around on the left.”

    He says this, but Greg Sowards seeks help from The Prosper Group, the same spamming fundraising outfit that “loon right” icons Allen West and Sharrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrron Angle use! Oh jeez, I hope he runs… And I hope teabaggers just stir up some real sh*t in that primary!

  7. http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.n

    The original model per… was discussed here at SSP, I think.

    Per some serious looking statistical data, Enten “stated that there was a 95 percent likelihood that Republicans would win between 228 and 248 seats.”


    But sometimes statistical models are as skin-deep as models on the runway, and this one is such an example.

    Nate uses the model to “retrodict” what it would have suggested for ’48:

    The model would have predicted that Republicans, who then held the majority in the House, would have maintained it by winning 241 seats. Instead, they lost 75 seats to Harry Truman’s Democrats and wound up with just 171.

  8. Newt Gingrich joined forces with Nancy Pelosi to address climate change–a few years ago, of course. This is a nice catch by Matt Yglesias, on the heels of his Think Progress friends who highlight his flip flop on Libya.

    I’m not really sure about his chances of winning the nomination. They are surely better than those of Bachmann but definitely less than those of Pawlenty or Romney. But in addition to his outrageous, idiotic statements about Obama (i.e. his Keynan nationalism or whatever) and his hilariously scandalous personal life, clips like this allow for several things to happen, chief among them driving a wedge between Gingrich and his base and Independent voters as well as being widely open to the charge of him being a flip-flopper. I just hope the higher ups in the Democratic party are willing to stick with a narrative like that, if it comes to it. The material is there, but is the will?


  9. It looks like Rep. Bobby Scott is considering entering the race and will decide by July.  I’m not sure how serious he is about running or if he’s annoyed that he hasn’t been talked up by anyone except Doug Wilder for the seat.

    That said, if he ran against Kaine in a primary, I think he would have a decent shot at winning.  I also think he would have a good chance in the general, but there’s no polling on that.  I’m guessing his name rec is the same or lower than Pereillo’s.

  10. He’s way out ahead of the rest in getting campaign infrastructure in place.  He’s got a really good campaign director, and they’re moving fast to lock up support from the institutional progressive world.  He’s got a long way to go, but I’m seeing him as a much more serious candidate than he originally seemed.

  11. and want to draw state legislative maps. The state government have opened up three locations. They are located at the IU Bloomington library, the IU South Bend library, and the IUPUI library.

  12. Link:

    A man who ran as a write-in candidate for U.S. Senate in Iowa has been sentenced to three days in jail and fined $350 for disturbing the peace of a student on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus last fall. […]

    UNL police said Storey was campaigning on campus when he saw a student worker removing his signs from university property and threatened her. Campaign signs aren’t allowed on university property. The student reported the incident to police.

    It was not clear why Storey was campaigning in Nebraska.

    The guy lives in Council Bluffs, which is just across the river from Omaha, Nebraska, but Lincoln’s quite a bit further away.


    According to it 53% listed white-only as their race, while 36% chose other(including Mexican, Latino, etc.)

    There are serious problems with how we talk about hispanics. They are not a race, or a cohesive group. Generally self-identifying they vote about 64-36 Democratic, but that disguises the fact that there are two hispanic populations, only one of which self-identifies.

    White Hispanics tend from the limited data available(results in wards in Texas and Arizona) to vote only four or five points more Democratic than whites as a whole, and marginally more Republican than the population at large. This does not get measured because exit polls are self-selecting and they select white, but they do show up. Despite massive growth in the Hispanic population, the % of the Texas electorate that is Hispanic has stayed pretty stable since 1994, when it was 17%.

    On the other side you have hispanics who identify as non-white, and vote like, well non-whites. They skew the total numbers.

    I think that the VRA may be extremly vulnerable to challenge to its applicability to individuals of Hispanic descent on the basis that a majority identified as white on the census. With the current court, such a suit might at a minimum force Justice Department to only count individuals who put down Latino or Other as a race, which would in  effect cut the hispanic population, and the number of VRA seats, in half.

  14. looking for map with a second black majority congressional district, ref

    (as noted on RRH) — sounds like an opportunity here for those who’ve created such in LA

    Rep. Patricia Smith, D-Baton Rouge, said Tony Fairfax of the Maryland-based Census Channel will be in the state to start reviewing census figures and other data to see whether a second minority district can be drawn.

    The consultant also will look at where new majority-minority statehouse districts can be drawn, possibly in the Baton Rouge and Shreveport areas to offset the expected loss of three black-majority House seats and at least one minority Senate seat in the New Orleans area because of a loss of population after the 2005 hurricanes.

  15. http://publicpolicypolling.blo

    This really doesn’t look like prime territory for a GOP pick-up. Romney would contest it, sure, but Obama’s doing curiously well among Independents here. I think he’s bleeding some white Democrats but they’d still back him over anyone but Romney. Lean D.

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