Sunday Night Tidbits

  • You may have noticed toward the upper right hand corner of the blog a new box: “Book of the Week.”  I started it last weekend and will typically rotate the book every weekend, though I’ll give the inaugural book two weeks.  And that inaugural book is Netroots Rising: How a Citizen Army of Bloggers and Online Activists Is Changing American Politics, written by RK/Badlands Blue blogger Lowell Feld and political strategist Nate Wilcox, with a foreword by Kos.  Check it out.
  • The Los Angeles Times runs a bluntly titled article “For Republicans, the Senate outlook is bad.”  Highlights include:

    That prospect is a window onto a remarkable political trend that has been eclipsed by the fireworks surrounding the 2008 presidential contest: Democrats are running strong Senate campaigns in states such as Mississippi, Alaska and North Carolina that Republicans have long taken for granted.The outlook for the GOP is so grim that party leaders have readily conceded there is no chance they can regain control of the Senate in 2008, even though Democrats’ current majority is slim, 51-49.

    “If you have an R in front of your name, you better run scared,” said Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, who says the party will do well if it holds its losses to three or four seats.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I can’t fathom why any Republican, lobbyist, or other political campaign contributor would bother dropping any money on the sinking ship that is the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

  • Another terrific omen for Democrats is Party ID trends.  According to Rasmussen Reports, June 2006 saw 37% identify as Democrats and 33.5% identify as Republicans; June 2008 saw Democrats climb four points to 41% and Republicans drop two points to 31.5%, a massive six-point swing for an already-leading Democratic Party.  And, according to Gallup, between 3Q of 2007 and 2Q of 2008, Republicans have stood at 27% while Democrats have jumped from 31% to 36%.  While numbers differ, the trend is clear: the Democratic Party is expanding its growingly robust lead over the Republican Party.
  • Oregon: Republican Gordon Smith’s disingenuous dive to the left may wind up costing him his conservative base:

    Oregon charter schools activist Rob Kremer has impeccable conservative bona fides.He is the founder of the Conservative Majority Action Project, a group that backs bedrock Republicans running for the state Legislature. He provides the right-wing perspective on a local talk show, chimes in frequently to agitate for the GOP on local blogs, and writes a column for a right-leaning magazine.

    And yet, this November, Kremer won’t be voting for Oregon’s only statewide elected Republican, U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith.

    “There are a lot more votes to be gained than lost by doing what he is doing, but I am one he has lost,” Kremer said. “I can’t vote for someone who has taken some of the positions he has taken, and if no one speaks out a little bit, it is only going to get worse.”

    Republican Gordon Smith’s reaction in the article:

    In an interview this past week with The Associated Press, Smith said he’s not concerned that fed-up conservative voters – many of whom are not especially fired up about presidential candidate John McCain either – will simply sit out the 2008 election.

    Republican Gordon Smith might not have reason to worry, as some Oregon conservatives don’t care about Smith’s lack of conviction or integrity (emphasis added by me):

    Gail Atteberry, who heads Oregon Right to Life, the state’s most influential anti-abortion group, has also seen the numbers. And while she said she was extremely disappointed by Smith’s admiring reference to Obama in his ad – Obama, she said, is the most “pro-abortion radical in the Senate” – she said she’s sticking with Smith.”We know it is posturing,” she said. “But I know his heart, where he stands on our issue, and I am confident that he will always remain true to that cause. For that reason, in spite of some of these other things, I am going to keep on keeping on with him.”

    Nevertheless, some conservatives are ready to hold Smith accountable in the voting booth:

    Others are simply keeping mum on Smith’s campaign-year decisions. June Hartley, a Republican National Committeewoman from Ontario who was a fervent supporter of Mitt Romney during his failed presidential bid, called the Smith-Obama ad “unusual” with a hint of disapproval in her voice before declining further comment.And some are just fed up, said Ted Piccolo, who runs nwrepublican.com, a widely read GOP blog.

    “People understand it is a campaign year, there might be some positions or votes that will frustrate you, but man, he has gone way, way out of his way to cozy up to the Democrats,” Piccolo said. “I think the Smith people are going to take all Republicans for granted and just assume they will show up, and you can’t assume that. Politics isn’t a spreadsheet.”

    As for Kremer, he says Smith lost him when he sided with Democrats last month in support of a cap-and-trade system, which would cap greenhouse gas emissions. The bill ultimately failed, but Smith said at the time that the climate change legislation would have helped reduce reliance on oil from overseas, while stimulating renewable energy industry.

    Fortunately for Oregon Republicans and other Beaver State conservatives looking to vote for a conservative with convictions, there is the Constitution Party’s Dave Brownlow.  I hope that Oregon conservatives send a message to Gordon Smith that convictions matter by voting for Brownlow over Smith.

  • North Carolina: Can you spot the difference between the two versions of Bush-rubber-stamp Elizabeth Dole’s recent TV ad?
    Original Version Second Draft

    In case you missed it, check the 23-second mark of both versions of the 30-second spot.  The stock video footage of a military airplane at the 23-second mark is different in the two versions.  With the rest of the ad identical between the two versions, why would Dole change this one second of stock video footage?  Someone who saw the footage suggested that the military aircraft in the first version of the ad is actually a French Naval aircraft!  Imagine that, Liddy Dole taking credit for work with the military by using footage of a French military aircraft.  If true, this would be quite a bit of egg on Dole’s face.  Can anyone more knowledgeable on the topic confirm?Update from the comments, courtesy of soko:

    the aircraft in the first version of the ad…is a French naval aircraft called a Super Etendard (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Etendard). Super Etendards became famous  for their role in the 1982 Falklands war between Britian and Argentina, where Super Etendards of the Argentine Navy sank several large British warships using Exocet anti-ship cruise missiles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exocet), a weapon similar to the US Navy’s Harpoon missile.

    Ironically enough, Super Etendards were also used in Battle by the Iraqi Air Force during the Iran-Iraq war during the 80s. It’s doubtful that any aircraft of this type have ever landed in North Carolina, much less been based there.

    The aircraft pictured in the second ad appears to be a USAF F-15.

  • Texas: State Representative and Lieutenant Colonel Rick Noriega continues to hammer chickenhawk John Cornyn on Cornyn’s failure to support our troops and our veterans.
  • Illinois: The media continues to speculate on who might succeed Barack Obama in the Senate should Obama win the Presidency in 2008.  The article is all over the place in terms of names, but does note that both Congressman Rahm Emanuel and Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White said that they weren’t interested and that Governor Rod Blagojevich “refused to say if he’d consider appointing himself.”

by: you @ soon

Obmam’s Successor

Rahm Emanuel will likely be the next Speaker of the House (Pelosi is almost McCain’s age, right?  I have to think she’s going to hang it up soon).  Has Obama hinted at a successor or who he has a lot of respect for in Illinois?Hokie Guru

http://firebryanstinespring.bl…


by: hokieguru @ Sun Jul 06, 2008 at 23:03:53 PM CDT

by: you @ soon

I was confused at first…

As for Kremer, he says Smith lost him when he sided with Democrats last month in support of a cap-and-trade system, which would cap greenhouse gas emissions. The bill ultimately failed, but Smith said at the time that the climate change legislation would have helped reduce reliance on oil from overseas, while stimulating renewable energy industry.

… on how reducing our dependence on foreign oil while helping the renewable energy industry is considered a bad thing for a charter schools activist like Rob Kremer with no obvious ties to the oil industry.  But then I read the next two paragraphs.

Kremer, though, said the bill would increase energy prices at a time when Oregon’s gas prices are among the highest in the nation. It was, for him, the last straw.”That is a complete betrayal of what any reasonable conservative should expect,” Kremer said. “He’s always been a reliable vote on taxes, but the cap and trade system is a monumental tax increase. So for him to betray that long-standing principle is enough to lose my vote.”

My question, since I haven’t looked at the particular details of this bill, is is that actually true?  Do we know that had the bill passed (and avoided Bush’s veto pen) that it would have actually resulted in higher energy costs, or is that simply more conservative economic fear-mongering?


by: BruinKid @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 02:17:58 AM CDT

by: you @ soon

Probably fear-mongering…

Probably fear-mongering. In fact, it is almost safe to assume without further investigation that is it fear-mongering.


by: C.S.Strowbridge @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 03:20:52 AM CDT


by: you @ soon

Cap and trade

If it works, the bill should increase energy prices; if it doesn’t then the cap is too low and your not getting any reduction in greenhouse emissions. A cap and trade system is roughly equivalent to a carbon tax.However, the effect of the tax on gas prices is actually pretty low. A gallon of gas contains about 20 pounds of carbon dioxide. In early years of a cap and trade system, we’re looking at a price of $10 or so per ton of carbon dioxide; that’s about 10 cents a gallon. Not all that noticeable when gas prices fluctuate by 30 cents a week.


by: BP in MN @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 10:36:38 AM CDT

by: you @ soon

Oregon

I think the DSCC and Obama should coordinate to hit back in Oregon:
“Every six years, when it’s time to get re-elected, Gordon Smith pretends he’s not a Republican.”
[clip from Smith's ad claiming to be among the first to oppose the war]
“In fact, Gordon Smith voted for the war, and continued to vote the way Bush wants him to vote every time.  He changed his talk after the 2006 election, but not his actions.”
[clip from Smith's ad claiming Obama has praised him]
“He even wants you to believe he has the support of Barrack Obama.  He doesn’t.”
Video of Obama saying, “Don’t be fooled.  There’s only one Democrat in Oregon’s race for Senate, and it’s not Gordon Smith.  I have endorsed Jeff Merkeley, the Democrat, for Senate.”


by: lilnev @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 15:55:58 PM CDT

The DSCC and Obama should also

work hard in Maine and Minnesota.


by: nkpolitics @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 17:18:04 PM CDT

by: you @ soon

Exactly!!!!

The DSCC and the Obama campaign both have the resources to do it.  Here’s hoping they will!


by: The Caped Composer @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 19:22:46 PM CDT


by: you @ soon

Am I the only one concerned

that the DSCC onlyhas about a 2-to-1 lead in financial resources and that might not be enough to win us 10 seats or be competitive in places like Texas?

Finish the Deal!  Help elect Democrats in districts we narrowly lost in 2006!
Democratic Future ActBlue page


by: Glenn Magus Harvey @ Mon Jul 07, 2008 at 23:35:54 PM CDT

Some of the so-called competitve Seats are in Red States- with incumbency advantage.

is out of reach. That means we are not going to win in
Alabama(Sessions)
Georgia(Chambliss)
Idaho(OPEN)-Risch
Kansas(Roberts)
Kentucky(McConnell)
Mississippi-A(Cochran)
Nebraska(OPEN)-Johanns
Oklahoma-(Inhofe)
South Carolina(Graham)
Tennessee(Alexander)
Texas(Cornyn)
Wyoming-A(Enzi)
Wyoming-B(Barrasso)Looking at the Red States- Democrats have a shot to win
Alaska- Stevens is tied in scandal- Democrat Mark Begich is a formidable candidate.
Mississippi-B- Wicker is appointed – Musgrove is a former governor. The state has strong black population.
North Carolina- State has a strong black turnout- Dole is a weak incumbent. State trending purple.

Due to Obama’s coattails and popularity in ME,MN,NH,and OR. Democrats have an excellent chance of unseating.
Collins-ME(Allen)
Coleman-MN(Franken)
Sununu-NH(Shaheen)
Smith-OR(Merkley).

Picking up CO,NM,and VA is a sure bet for Democrats.


by: nkpolitics @ Tue Jul 08, 2008 at 06:57:06 AM CDT

by: you @ soon

the aircraft in the first version of the ad…

is a French naval aircraft called a Super Etendard (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_Etendard). Super Etendards became famous  for their role in the 1982 Falklands war between Britian and Argentina, where Super Etendards of the Argentine Navy sank several large British warships using Exocet anti-ship cruise missiles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exocet), a weapon similar to the US Navy’s Harpoon missile.Ironically enough, Super Etendards were also used in Battle by the Iraqi Air Force during the Iran-Iraq war during the 80s. It’s doubtful that any aircraft of this type have ever landed in North Carolina, much less been based there. The aircraft pictured in the second ad appears to be a USAF F-15.

Click here for the new senate guru blog…

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