Aug
17
2014
8

The Hill more or less publishes its ‘Democratic candidates in 2016′ list.

Oh, sure, they’re calling calling it “Five figures on the left who could challenge Hillary Clinton,” but let’s face it: Democrats who aren’t on the Left these days are rare, and probably dying of old age. And since Hillary is pretty solid Left herself – socialized medicine is not even remotely conservative – the alternatives are pretty darn Left as well.  Below is the Hill’s list, with my sardonic commentary attached:

  • Hillary Clinton. Pros: Bill Clinton. Cons: Bill Clinton.  Hillary Clinton. Barack Obama.
  • Elizabeth Warren.  Pros: Can make a plausible case that Barack Obama hates her.  Cons: Ever see what happens when a Massachusetts liberal runs for President?  It ain’t pretty.
  • Joe Biden. Pros: He’s the only person on this list that has anything like a personality.  Cons: He’s the only person on this list who can’t run against – or away from – Barack Obama’s legacy.  Plus, you know, Joe Biden.
  • Martin O’Malley. Pros: Hey! He’s a sitting governor. Cons: …I don’t find him interesting enough to be worth despising.  Nobody does. That pretty much includes Maryland Democrats, the average one of whom will readily admit after his or her third drink that the man has the charisma of an empty soda bottle.
  • Bernie Sanders. Pros: He’s as close to a Commie as you can get in this country and still be elected to anything. Cons: He’s as close to a Commie as you can get in this country and still be elected to anything.
  • Russ Feingold. Pros: Of everybody on this list, he’s the only one who hasn’t been burned by Barack Obama’s policies, activities, feuds with Congress, or simple guilt-by-association. Cons: Russ Feingold hasn’t held office since 2010, and has been avoiding running for anything since then.  And the Democrats badly wanted Feingold to run for Governor of Wisconsin.

(more…)

Aug
01
2014
3

Cook Political Report House race update: 17 races +GOP, 4 +Dem.

This is not precisely a ‘Boom!’

…and I’d hold off calling DOOM on this, either. But it’s getting there. There are two interesting data points, here:

  1. Cook’s main ratings now show that there are five Republican seats that are seriously at risk of flipping, as opposed to fifteen Democratic ones.
  2. Looking at the race changes themselves: Cook took 6 Republicans and one Democrat effectively off of the board completely by rating their races as Solid.  Cook also put one race  (IA-02) into play by upgrading it from Solid Democratic to Likely Democratic.

That last point is important because it shows in stark relief the shrinking of the Democratic playing field. Right now Cook ranks the house as: 204 Solid Republican, 160 Solid Democratic. The Republicans currently control 15 seats that are ranked Likely Republican: even if you spot the Democratic party every other race (including the two Democratic-controlled seats that are ranked Likely Republican) the GOP would still have a majority in the House next year. Not that will happen: what is expected to happen is that the Democrats will probably lose a net six seats or so. (more…)

Jul
31
2014
7

Democrat in Ohio-GOV losing ground among people who… know who he is?

Wait, what?

I almost don’t want to write about this.

Ed FitzGerald, the Democrat running against Gov. John Kasich, is somehow less well known today than he was a few months ago.

Quinnipiac University Poll out Wednesday shows 65 percent of registered Ohio voters didn’t know enough about FitzGerald – who announced his campaign in April 2013 – to form an opinion. (The numbers are within the polls’ margins of error.)

That’s actually up from a similar poll in May, when 63 percent said they didn’t know enough about him.

I mean, I have professional pride.  And while I do certainly have tendencies towards cruelty I also have a bad habit of being a big softy when the chips are down.  How do you snark on that?  What can I say about whatshisname that is actually worse than the news that after three months of campaigning people remember him less?   (more…)

Jul
18
2014
3

Your semi-annual reminder: Barack Obama’s polling numbers are horrible.

These are not numbers that are compatible with the Democrats doing well in November.

job-approval|

In fact, the only thing that they are compatible with is… pain.  The President’s job approval average has been a good rough rule of thumb for some time now; and if you remember 2006 and 2008 then you’re familiar with this particular kind of narrative arc. And, most importantly: there’s no indication that the President is going to suddenly become good at his job between now and Labor Day.

And after Labor Day it will be too late.

Moe Lane

PS: :shrug: Don’t look at me: I’m just the messenger.

 

 

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Jul
15
2014
1

Reminder: Alabama and North Carolina primary runoff elections tonight.

There may be a surprise in NC-06:

…but I’m not going to pretend that I know the ins and outs of either NC-06 or AL-06. Neither is particularly in danger of flipping to the Democrats in November anyway.

Jul
12
2014
2

Democrats stuck trying to duck Barack Obama without looking like they’re doing that.

Drink the pain. Drink:

The 2014 election is likely to give us many more moments of gut-wrenching agony and Democrats going all Apostle Peter on the president they universally supported when elected in 2008. Members of the White House political team will grit their teeth and ask low-level campaign staffers if, you know, it would be OK for the commander-in-chief to show up. They will be told to call back in a few days. Often, they will be told, “No thanks, but send money.”

This won’t console the candidates, but they are not the first to find themselves trapped between their voters and an unpopular president. In 1998 and in 2006, both the second midterm years of struggling presidents, lots of candidates agonized over whether to let the most powerful man in the world land his plane near them.

(more…)

Jun
27
2014
4

Mary Burke’s poor (in many senses*) gubernatorial campaign against Scott Walker.

While this is a very interesting article written about Democratic Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Mary Burke (who will likely to face Scott Walker in November), this is the most important sentence in the whole thing:

So far, neither the Democratic Governors Association nor EMILY’s List (which spent $3.5 million to help elect Wisconsin Sen. Tammy Baldwin in 2012) has launched ads on Burke’s behalf, and both groups declined to say when they planned to do so.

(more…)

Jun
25
2014
4

‘It’s beginning to look a lot like… 2006.’

OK, so it doesn’t scan.  The quality of my political filking is probably not the Democrats’ worst problem right now, though:

I could spend several hundred words going over that graph of Barack Obama’s poor, and widening, approval rating – but I’d just be coming up with new and different ways to say That approval rating really sucks for the Democrats. Which it does. And that’s going to translate into bad news for a lot of downticket races If you look over at RCP right now they’re forecasting no net change in the gubernatorial tally. Which is relevant because the Democrats have high hopes of gaining Florida, Maine, and Pennsylvania; it’s just that they’re about to lose Arkansas, Hawaii, and Illinois. And, for that matter: the Democrats lost a lot of governorships last time. They probably would have preferred to get the Midwest back, honestly.

Anyway. Nice place to be, four months or so out. Nice place to be.

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Jun
24
2014
15

It’s almost over. At long last, the Mississippi Senate GOP primary…

…is almost over.  They just have to count the votes, now.  Yes, I am so ready for this to be over and done with. And I’ll be honest; I kinda feel sorry for Thad Cochran. I know, I know, he chose to be amenable to pressure to run just one more time – but I am often prone to these bouts of sentimentality, and I frankly cherish them. I feel that they keep me from engaging in thought-patterns that are not… optimal, in the long run.

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Jun
06
2014
5

How Green will make the Senate Red – thus making Democrats blue.

Josh Kraushaar asks a question: “Does President Obama care about keeping the Senate?”  I answer with another question: “Why would he care?”

…and this is becoming a bit of a broken drum, huh? – Which is significant in and of itself, given that the midterm elections are in five months.  Five months where the President and leader of his party is spending his time playing golf and having over-long dinner parties instead of attending to either the country’s, or his faction’s, business.

:pause:

The old joke is right: God must be a Republican.  Because this goes way beyond ‘blind luck,’ and right into ‘Divine intervention’…

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Jun
06
2014
3

Cook Political Report shifts California-26 from Lean D to Toss-up.

This is fallout from last Tuesday’s California primary: freshman Democrat Julia Brownley got 46% of the vote to Republican Jeff Gorell‘s 44%. What should probably worry Brownley more is that the combined total percentage of Republican votes was over 50%.  It was generally not a great night for California’s Democratic candidates:

  • In CA-07 incumbent freshman Democrat Ami Bera is likewise dealing with an environment where Republicans got over 50% of the vote.
  • In CA-16 incumbent Jim Costa has the same problem… which he did not have in 2012.  This race may have more possibilities than we thought.
  • In CA-25 Democrats were locked out of the race to replace Buck McKeon.  That seat is now Safe Republican.
  • In CA-31 the same thing might still happen: one Republican won first place, and the second spot is up to the absentee ballots. If this happens it will mark the second cycle in a row that the jungle primary system has ensured a Republican representative in what is considered to be a Democratic-leaning seat.
  • In CA-52 freshman Democratic incumbent Scott Peters is staring early retirement in the face: he got only 42% of the vote against a field of Republican candidates.
  • And, in general: there is no indication that any sitting incumbent Republicans from California are in trouble in the House this year.

All in all, the GOP is looking more and more like they will not lose any net seats in California this year (I consider CA-31 balanced by CA-52) and may actually pick up a couple.  And the funny part? The Democrats still haven’t seemed to work out how to work with the new top-two primary system. So if you believe that there were shenanigans involved in the post-Census redistricting… then I guess that those shenanigans failed, because the system now seems to be predisposed to punish political parties that can’t maintain ballot discipline..

I know, I know: ain’t it a shame?

Moe Lane (crosspost)

PS: Via comments here it’s now looking like the next California controller might have to be a Republican:

Republican David Evans has edged into second place in the seesaw battle for state controller, pushing Democratic Assemblyman John Pérez into third and, at least for now, out of the Nov. 4 general election.

But a report by the secretary of state’s office Friday morning showed that 991,699 ballots remain to be counted across California, making the most recent numbers anything but final.

Numbers released Thursday night show Republican Ashley Swearengin, the mayor of Fresno, leading the race to replace termed-out Democrat John Chiang with 761,108 votes, or 24.6 percent of the ballots cast.

This jungle primary thing just doesn’t stop being funny.

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