Showing posts with label 2014 Elections. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2014 Elections. Show all posts

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Friday, November 07, 2014

Voter Turnout

US News has an interesting graphic up that shows just how bad voter turnout was in the election last Tuesday. Barely 40 percent in Arkansas and Louisiana. Wow. Under 40 percent in Illinois and Florida. Completely pathetic. Basically the only people that turned out to vote were old, white people. No wonder the GOP won so handily.

Republicans have been proclaiming that United States voters have rejected the president's policies. Which ones? The economy is better, unemployment is down to 5.8 percent, the deficit has shrunk, and more Americans have health care. What am I missing?

The only answers I have gotten are a bunch of ideological nonsense.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

The Big GOP Win

The Republicans had their day in the sun yesterday winning (for right now) a 52 seat majority to 45 for the Dems. Alaska looks like it will go GOP and Virginia looks like it will stay blue. Louisiana will have a run off in December which Landrieu will likely lose. The GOP also gained 13 in the House. So that makes it 54-46. Republican governors (save Pennsylvania) stayed in office and won big as well.

What does it all mean? Well, a large part of it is voter turnout. People just stayed home or didn't know there was an election. The rest was pure anger, hate and fear of President Obama. The GOP ran on nothing but that and won.

It's going to be interesting to see if the GOP actually works with the president or acts like adolescents. I predict the former because if they want to have any chance of staying in power in 2016, they are going to have to work with him.

Monday, November 03, 2014

Election Eve

Twas the night before the midterms and all seems lost for the Democrats...

I'm still not changing my prediction. It's going to end up 51 R 49 D. Further, I also predict that the GOP will caterwaul about how this means the country is moving right, hates Obama, and liberals/progressives are over.

Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. If the GOP does indeed prevail, as I believe they will, it will simply be due to low voter turnout. Nikto put up a nice piece yesterday about why people should vote in every election. I've often wondered if compulsory voting would make things better. Part of me thinks it would make things worse.

Go vote tomorrow!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Election 2014 Update

Today, I am wondering what percentage of Americans are unaware that there is an election in a week and half. I have a question out on Quora  about it so we'll see what kind of responses I get.

Meanwhile, Democrats are pulling out what remains of the hair at all of the latest polls. Colorado and Iowa are shifting to the R column with Arkansas, Alaska and Louisiana seemingly out of reach. The only good news for the Dems is Georgia is now shifting their way. David Perdue is running a really bad campaign so that's no surprise. And Greg Orman is now making noises that he will caucus with the Democrats or, at least, do things they like.

My prediction still stands: 51R, 49 D

Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Democrats Have Already Won

Even though the election is two and half weeks away, the Democrats have already won.

Consider for a moment what happens if the GOP takes back the Senate (which I think they will). They will have one of two options. They can continue to behave like 12 year old boys, be stubborn and immovable, have temper tantrums, and play to their base with Obama hating. Or they can compromise and take credit for doing things they didn't want to give the president a full win on. Either way, the Democrats win.

If Republicans take the first route, they are fucked in 2016. Higher voter turnout will erase any victories gained this year with the GOP having to defend 24 of the 34 seats up for reelection in two years. The House will see losses as well. And, with a likely Hillary Clinton candidacy, the Democrats will see even higher voter enthusiasm as we could potentially elect our first woman president.

If Republicans take the second route, the country benefits and we actually get some things done we needed to get done six years ago.

Sally Kohn echoes much of this sentiment in a recent piece over at CNN. The fact that the Senate is still a contest does not bode well for the future of the GOP. Republicans tap dancing around the ACA is fucking hilarious. Even more funny is how desperate they seem.

Wasn't this election supposed to be about Obamacare? No, that didn't work. So Republicans tried to make the midterms about Benghazi. No luck there either. Now they're just generally fear-mongering around ISIS and Ebola and hoping that would work. But the constantly shifting Republican shell game shows how little substantive traction conservatives have with average voters outside their highly gerrymandered House districts. 

Every time they open their mouths, Republican candidates show that they habitually bash President Obama to distract from the impression that they have neither the intention nor ability to help solve urgent problems facing the country.


On the point of traction with average voters...

Economic equality and reproductive freedom are basic priorities for women voters, a group that Republicans already had a tough time winning over. The GOP even commissioned its own poll that found women voters are "barely receptive" to Republican ideas and think the party is "intolerant" and "stuck in the past." By their own deeds, not to mention rhetoric, Republicans just keep reinforcing their war on women and driving voters away.

With all of this, I say the GOP picks option two after they take back the Senate.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Suddenly, South Dakota

It looks like the race for the Senate seat in South Dakota isn't as much of a slam dunk for the Republicans originally thought.

According to the Survey USA/KOTA/KSFY/Aberdeen American News poll taken between Oct. 1 and Oct. 6, Rounds is only leading independent Larry Pressler 35-32 percent among likely voters. (Pressler is a former GOP senator who has not said how he would caucus if elected.) Not far behind is Democrat Rick Weiland, with 28 percent.

Add in the fact that the Democrats are now going to spend $1 million dollars in the cheap advertising market there and suddenly the GOP is playing defense. This story could also have an impact on Rounds.

No doubt, this year's elections are going to be interesting. A common theme that I have noticed among the Democrats is a fear based strategy with the express intent of getting people out to vote. When the media speaks of Republican waves based on certain polls, the Democrats send out emails and voter registration goes up in the battleground states.

Take, for example, the Quinnipiac poll from mid September that showed Republican challenger Bob Beauprez 10 points ahead of John Hickenlooper in the Colorado governor's race. The Democrats made a lot of hay out of that one and now take a look at the polls. Hickenlooper has led in every one except the Fox poll in which they are tied. Of course, no one really took the Quinnipiac poll seriously anyway so this could be just a normal readjustment.

It's also important to note the number of likely voters when looking at these polls. RCP shows how many LVs there are with each poll. The CBS poll, for example, has nearly 1700 likely voters while the Fox poll has only 700. Obviously, the CBS poll is more accurate with a greater number of LVs.

We are only three weeks out, folks, and things are likely to get more exciting. I'm still at 51-49, GOP favor, for the Senate...the House staying more or less the same...and somewhere between 3-5 GOP governors getting the boot.

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Repeat And Spread This Every Day Until The Election

From a recent Facebook post...

After the 2008 elections the Republicans were one more Election Day loss away from ceasing to be a viable national party. They had lost the '06 & '08 elections so badly that they became desperate. Out of that desperation came the strategy to oppose anything that Democrats in general and POTUS Obama in particular favored. 

This desperate strategy was hatched on the night of POTUS Obama's first inauguration and it was hoped that it would gum up the works of government to the point where enough people who were captivated and enthusiastic about the Obama presidency would become disenchanted by the lack of substantial progress on the most problematic issues, sit out future elections and stay out of the political process. Again, this was/is a strategy borne out of desperation but it was designed with some very deep-seeded traits (like the short attention spans of and instant gratification mindset of so many Americans) in mind too, particularly turning budding progressives off to the entire political process. Sorry to say that this desperate strategy worked better than the Republicans could have ever hoped, especially in the 2010 mid-term elections, when voter turnout nationwide plummeted to 40%. 

Liberal talking heads like filmmaker Michael Moore were so turned off by the lack of progress on key issues like financial reform and the lack of either single-payer healthcare or the public option being part of the final ACA that they actually encouraged progressives to not vote in 2010.

Republicans had nothing to lose by becoming professional obstuctionists as long as it succeeded in turning people (most of whom would probably vote for Democrats) off to the entire political process. The Republicans KNOW their base WILL turn out to vote as long as they continue obstructing and advocating what most of us consider policies and strategies that are off a cliff crazy. Despite the continuing high number of absolutely crazy policies advocated by Republicans, despite Republican pols continuing to disparage women, African-Americans, Latinos, gay-Americans, working class Americans of both genders and all ethnic backgrounds, despite the lack of even cloaking their ties to and obedience to corporate masters, the Republicans are looking at a very realistic chance of increasing their majority in the House of Representatives and gaining the majority in the US Senate.

Never seen anything like it in my life. It's like the more mean-spirited Republicans become the better their prospects become for the midterm elections. And this success is primarily (overwhelmingly) due to progressives (liberals) sulking and staying away from the process. 

Well, if progressives stay away from this year's elections ... quite possibly the most important midterm election in modern history ... and the Republicans win the day on Nov. 4, they should no longer wonder why things are so gummed up, why corporate interests win out on every issue or problem, why politics is such a filthy, cutthroat business because if they want to know who's fault it is, the first thing progressives who didn't vote should do is go look in a mirror.

This is exactly the message that needs to be repeated over and over again between now and election day.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Buzz In The Tiny World Of Poll Nerds

I've been pretty amused by the Twitter war that has blown up between forecasters Sam Wang and Nate Silver. It shouldn't surprise anyone that the blogsphere (especially the right wing blogsphere) and social media need guys like Silver and Wang to thump their digital chests and pwn someone in comments (hmm...Silver and Wang...sounds like a gay porn title:))

In my view, Wang has been too optimistic about the Democrats' chances in taking over the Senate, although his latest model is line with my current prediction as well (51 R, 49 D). Yet, it's important to remember that Silver's model shows the Republicans with a 59.3 percent chance of winning the Senate and the Democrats with a 40.7 of holding on to the Senate. People look at this and say, "Oh, well the GOP are ahead so they will win." That's not how it works in statistics. Wang should know this when he admonishes Silver for being "wrong" about Montana and North Dakota. Silver wasn't wrong. Even though the odds favored the GOP in those races, they still lost. That's what happens sometimes.

The Republicans have been pretty smart this election cycle and kept the real nutters off the ballot. Their candidates have just enough Tea Party in them to pass muster and nowhere near the level of sheer moonbattery to drive midterm voters away. But they have to be careful.

Once the 2014 election is over, the 2016 election officially begins. The tables are going to be turned 180 degrees and the GOP is going to have to defend 24 seats to the Dems 10. If they spend two years acting like children and stonewalling the president, they'll lose the Senate, several seats in the House, and any chance of winning the White House. At half of the approval rating of the president, they will have zero wiggle room to have tantrums. Their future as a party depends on their willingness to compromise because their base is very old and the Democrats' base is young.

That's why I chuckle when I hear this year's GOP candidates say they are going to take it to the president and force their agenda down his throat. Yeah, like that's going to play well in 2016. No, sorry, I predict that if they do win back the Senate, they are going to cave on some issues...just like they always have before...and piss off their "no compromise" base.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Election 2014 Update

Now that we are sufficiently past the Labor Day holiday, we can take a look at the polls for November election and see a much clearer picture. At this point in time, things don't look good at all for the Democrats.

The two main sources I use in predicting elections are RealClear Politics and Nate Silver's 538 Blog. The former currently has 45 D and 47 R with 9 tossups so let's start with that baseline and build from there. Silver has Michigan and New Hampshire going to the Dems with an 82 percent chance and North Carolina doing the same with a 76 percent chance. That puts the Senate at 47-47 with six seats up for grabs. This is exactly where control for the Senate will be fought.

Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, and Kansas.

Before we focus on these states, it's worth a moment to note Kentucky and Louisiana. It looks like Mitch McConnell is firmly in control of winning back his seat. Alison Grimes is a great candidate but she hasn't been able to make any headway. Given all the data that goes into predicting elections, the most important of which is turnout, things don't look good for her at all. Nor do they look good for Mary Landrieu with RCP having Louisiana as a lean R and part of that 47. She is also not a good candidate and will not get the 50 percent of the vote needed to prevent a runoff which will occur in December. At this point, I predict that this election will tip the outcome of the Senate. More on that in a moment.

Colorado will go for the Democrats. There is also an election for the state's governor there which means larger voter turnout. That always favors the Democrats. John Hickenlooper is in a tight race but I think he will prevail. So will Tom Udall despite the recent Quinnipiac poll which no one really takes seriously (compare them to other polls). I also think Iowa will go for the incredibly flawed candidate, Bruce Braley. There will also be a bigger turnout in this state because of the gubernatorial election (event though Terry Branstead will win) and thus, more Democratic voters. Iowa also does not elect women Senators.

So, that brings the Dems to 49 but at this point, I think that is all they are going to get. Silver has Alaska, Arkansas and Georgia all going R with over a 70 percent chance and I think he is right with one small caveat. The Alaska voters are very hard to poll and turnout is always low yet still favors incumbents so everyone could be off on this one. But let's say it goes red so now the GOP has 50 and that leaves us with Kansas. Greg Orman was recently courted by the failed Tea Party candidate, Milton Wolf and I think that he will eventually caucus with the Republicans. He could surprise everyone, however, and be the first truly independent candidate but Kansas is a red state so it's likely he will want to please his voters. That puts the GOP at 51.

Of course, on election night, it will be 50 GOP, 49 Dems with Louisiana into a runoff. Suddenly all eyes will be on Mary Landrieu and I don't think she will be up to the task. Millions will be poured into the runoff but it won't work for the Democrats. At this point, I predict that the Senate will be 51 R, 49 Dem. 

Could there be twists, turns and surprises which will alter my prediction?

Naturally. I could be off on Orman (a former Democrat) and the anti-GOP sentiment in Kansas, due to the absolute failure of the conservative economic policies of Sam Brownback, could tip him into caucusing with the Democrats. Or Begich, Pryor could pull it out. It's very hard to unseat an incumbent. Perhaps Iowa could surprise and elect a woman.

No doubt, things are going to be very exciting in the next few weeks!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

“We’re going to be bankrupt in two or three years if we keep going his way.”

The state of Kansas has become an excellent example of exactly what happens when you run a government with they type of policies championed by right wing bloggers.

In his 40 years living in Kansas, Konrad Hastings cannot remember voting for a Democrat. He is the type who agonizes over big purchases, trying to save as much money as possible. He is against stricter gun laws, opposes abortion in most cases and prefers less government involvement in his life.

But when he casts his ballot for governor in November, he plans to shun the leader of this state’s conservative movement, the Republican incumbent, Sam Brownback, and vote for the Democratic challenger. “He’s leading Kansas down,” said Mr. Hastings, 68, who said he voted for Mr. Brownback four years ago, when he easily won his first term. “We’re going to be bankrupt in two or three years if we keep going his way.”

Apparently, other Republicans feel the same way because Brownback is down in the polls in a deep red state like Kansas. Just to put this in perspective...Barack Obama lost Kansas by more than 20 points in the 2012 election. And look who else is in trouble because of his policies. The one thing that both Kansas and Wisconsin have in common?

A right wing blogger view of government and economies.

Ironic that their predictions of doom and gloom are actually self-created:)

Speaking of the fall elections, where is that Republican wave I kept hearing about? Kay Hagan is pulling away from Thom Tillis in North Carolina. Bruce Braley (not a good candidate) has continued to stay ahead of Jodi Ernst. The GOP challengers in Alaska and Arkansas are barely staying ahead of their opponents. This does not look at all like what we saw in September of 2010.

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the GOP approval rating is half of the president's approval rating. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Maher Announces Winner of Flip A District Contest

Bill Maher announced the winner of his "Flip A District" contest and it's none other than Minnesota's own John Kline! The Republican Representative from the 2nd congressional district. RCP currently rates this district as "likely GOP" but Kline's opponent, Democrat Mike Obermueller, is going to get a big boost from this national attention.

My hope is that voters in MN-02 will take a look at Kline's voting record (detailed most eloquently by Maher in the clip from the link) and turn out to vote. If that happens, Obermueller has a chance of winning. Perhaps Maher could do a live show from MN-02 as well. It will be interesting to see if the polls shift over the course of the next few weeks:)

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Nothing Is The Matter With Kansas

The withdrawal of Kansas Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Chad Taylor spells big trouble for the GOP's chances to take back the upper chamber in November. Independent candidate Greg Orman is polling much higher than Pat Roberts and is running a very effective campaign that appeals to both Democratic and Republican voters. When asked who he would caucus with if he was elected, Orman replied that he would work with whatever party wanted to fix the problems our nation faces.

Hmm...I wonder which party that is?

Imagine if it's 50-49, GOP, on the morning after election day. Greg Orman will be the most popular man in the country!

Meanwhile the last two polls from Georgia show Michelle Nunn ahead of David Perdue. The Republicans can't lose either of these states if they hope to take back the Senate. They already have to sweep Iowa, North Carolina, Louisiana, and Arkansas. Real Clear Politics has them doing that with razor thin leads but much of that polling is old, summer numbers. It's going to be interesting to see what polls we see in the next few weeks.

One thing we can definitely glean from all of these tight numbers is that it's very unlikely to be a wave election. Politico's LARRY J. SABATO, KYLE KONDIK and GEOFFREY SKELLEY all agree.

So where’s the wave? This is President Obama’s sixth-year-itch election. The map of states with contested Senate seats could hardly be better from the Republicans’ vantage point. And the breaks this year—strong candidates, avoidance of damaging gaffes, issues such as Obamacare and immigration that stir the party base—have mainly gone the GOP’s way, very unlike 2012. 

Nonetheless, the midterms are far from over. In every single one of the Crystal Ball’s toss-up states, (Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana and North Carolina), the Republican Senate candidate has not yet opened up a real polling lead in any of them. Democratic nominees have been running hard and staying slightly ahead, or close to, their Republican foes.

The reason is quite simple. The voting public dislikes the Republicans more than the president.

So, now we starting to see stories like this one.

Why Democrats will keep the Senate: A contrarian analysis of the 2014 midterms

Or this one.

How Democrats Can Hold Their Senate Majority

Here's another cool site for all you statistics and polling nerd.

We're in the home stretch, kiddos. Buckle up for a crazy ride!!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Blogging Comes Back To Haunt HIm

Check this out.

Ah, the sweet sound of a butterfly emerging from his bubble...I mean cocoon...sorry...

It's not like MN-01 was really in play anyway but I found this story amusing on a number of levels. First, there was this...

“On behalf of all red-blooded American men: THANK YOU SENATOR McCAIN, SARAH’S HOT!” he wrote.

How old is Jim Hagedorn? Because he sounds like he's (ahem) an adolescent.

There's also this...

In a 2002 “masterpiece analysis,”...

In a 2008 “masterpiece analysis,”...

Gee, this sounds awfully familiar. The egos on these people..I suppose that's what comes with massive insecurity and the stereotypical inferiority complex.

And I'm SURE that his remarks on gays, women, and American Indians were COMPLETELY satirical...

Thursday, July 03, 2014

Unemployment Rate Drops

U.S. employment growth jumped in June and the jobless rate closed in on a six-year low, decisive evidence the economy was moving forward at a brisk clip after a surprisingly big slump at the start of the year. Nonfarm payrolls increased by 288,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent, its lowest level since September 2008, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Data for April and May were revised to show a total of 29,000 more jobs created than previously reported.

This marks the 5th straight month of 200K+ job growth which is great news for the US Economy. Of course, this is not so great for the Republicans who have now officially lost the economy as a campaign issue in the fall. If the economy is the #1 issue in the fall election and it's going in the right direction, why would they want to vote an incumbent out of office?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Democrats Counting Cash

On behalf of all Democrats and liberals, I would like to personally thank John Boehner and all Republicans everywhere for helping out with our fundraising yesterday. The DCCC has the best day it's had this year with a cool half mil coming into the coffer. Thanks dudes!

Perhaps continued attacks on the president will also increase voter turnout in the midterms and he can kick their ass a third time:)

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Eric Cantor Pooping

My oh my has there been one massive shitting of the bed over the loss Eric Cantor experienced on Tuesday night to Tea Party Challenger David Brat. Some of the diarrhea..

"It's about amnesty in immigration!"

"The Tea Party is back"

"He was too much of a Washington insider so the conservative masses voted him out!"

And my personal favorite...

"This signifies a conservative tsunami this fall!"

Well, here are my thoughts in order of the pooping. First, we already have amnesty in terms of illegal immigration. That's the result of doing nothing. We're aren't going to deport 11 million people and be the cause of one of the worst humanitarian crises the world has ever seen. Further, the poster child for "evil amnesty" is Lindsey Graham who handily won his primary so this comment makes no sense.

Second, the Tea Party never left. Their ideology is now the ideology of the "mainstream" candidates. No conservative today can win without being far right because of the nature of their base which basically means they are digging themselves into a deeper hole for national elections. 2014 may end up being bad for Democrats but 2016 is going to be a fucking disaster for Republicans. Imagine, Hillary Clinton and both houses of Congress controlled by the Democrats.

And we haven't seen David Brat yet on the national stage. I doubt the Democratic challenger can beat him in VA-7 but if he goes Akin or Murdock, say goodbye to that seat.

Third, conservative masses...yes, all 36,000 to 28,000 people at 10 percent voter turnout...8,000 votes...some mass indeed! All this says to me is that a lot of people couldn't be arsed to show up. There's also the fact that this was an open primary which means there could have been some Democrats in their voting as well:)

Finally, it warms my heart when the right gets over eager and shit. We've seen this before only to have it followed by stubborn disbelief (Karl Rove, Ohio, 2012 Election). I realize this is the last chance for the 12 year old boys to "beat" Barack Obama but they are going to put themselves right out of business jumping the gun with this kind of talk. Don't they realize how hard organizations like the OFA and other Democratic groups are going to be working to get the vote out? They vastly underestimated the president and his election operation before and look what happened.

Honestly, I am very happy to see Eric Cantor being shown the door. He's an asshole and a giant metaphor for all of the bullshit the president and the Democrats have to put up with every day. And I want far right candidates running in all elections this year. It just helps out the moderate Democrats. Perhaps all of this is over analysis, though. Don't both men look the same?

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Looking Tough

Michelle Nunn, the Democratic Candidate for Senate in Georgia, is leading both Jack Kingston and David Perdue in the polls with Kingston being the weaker of the two candidates. Recall that the race in Kentucky is very tight as well so the notion that this is going to be a Republican wave isn't really accurate. If the GOP picks up South Dakota and West Virginia (which they likely will) but loses Georgia and Kentucky, I don't think they can win back control of the Senate. They'd have to win 6 of the other 7 "tossup" seats in order to take the Senate.

And some of those tossups aren't really tossups with Iowa, Michigan and Colorado likely going to stay blue. Even with North Carolina, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Alaska going red, it still wouldn't be enough. No doubt, this is going to be a very tough election for both Democrats and Republicans.

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Tenor of 2014

In some ways, the GOP primaries this week in Georgia and Kentucky have crystallized the tenor of the fall elections. It might seem on the surface that the so called "establishment" candidates have won or, in the case of Georgia, are involved in a runoff. There have been more than a few articles proclaiming that the Tea Party lost.

Yet the platforms of these victorious candidates sound just like the Tea Party. Mitch McConnell is essentially running against Barack Obama (see: Obama Mental Meltdown Syndrome), not Alison Grimes, a mistake which I think will cost him the election. That and the fact that Ms. Grimes really good candidate.

If I were Senator McConnell, I'd spend less time obsessing about the president and more time talking his plans and how he will execute them. Does he really want the president to kick his ass a third time?

Down in Georgia, things just got a whole lot brighter for Michelle Nunn. Jack Kingston and David Perdue are now in a runoff so they get to spend the next nine weeks fighting each other while Ms. Nunn builds up her war chest. It's still going to be tough for her but again, both of these establishment candidates are sounding awfully Tea Partyish.

That suits me just fine. I think the GOP should go as far right as the want to go. It's just going to help out the Democrats this year and keep the Right out of the White House in 2016.