I haven’t spoken to anyone who thinks that this significantly changes the dynamics of the race. Here is a round-up of statements that pretty much put this thing to bed.
The Bethany Hall-Long apology:
“My husband is the man depicted in the video. The video shows him removing a handful of signs this morning. He turned them over to the Democratic Party and asked that they be returned to the Republican Party about six hours after they were taken up,” she said. “Sadly, this race has become tough and personal. My husband is my high school sweetheart and he loves me very much. I was not aware that he had allowed his frustration over the campaign attacks to get the better of him. Of course I’m disappointed and wish that it had not happened.”
Man, you get Republicans into a room with their donors and supporters and they really open up about their plans. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who is inexplicably considering a presidential bid for reasons passing any human understanding, said earlier this month in such a private gathering that “white men who are in male-only clubs are going to do great in my presidency.”
I’m sure, Senator. I’m sure.
Much like my predictions yesterday for all the state races, I will also predict all of the U.S. Senate races as well. Look for that on Monday. Here are some of the latest polls, inside…
Everyone knows who the President of the United States. But after that, it’s a crap shoot. A Jimmy Kimmel (I think, maybe it was a Jimmy Fallon skit) revealed that some people in New York don’t know who Joe Biden is. And we know moving down the electoral ladder, from governor to U.S. Senator to your representative in Congress to your state Senators and Representatives and your local councilpeople, that the smaller and more local a position, the less likely it is that people are going to know who they are. So the people who have the most power to affect your daily and everyday life, i.e. your county and city councilmen and women, your state representatives and senators, are strangers to you. But everyone knows Obama.
As a local political blog, we strive to keep you informed as to who the most important politicians to you are. But even we fail at that sometimes. National political news is easier to follow, because you know the players and the players want to be known, and you have many people wanting to tell you the story. If you want to follow local politics, your choices are limited, hard to find, and often lacking much substance. And its hard to follow events because the players are lesser known to you.
So to help in that, let’s start in talking about and predicting all of the offices up and down the ballot. And as you see below, I have included all the statewide and county level Row offices, even though I think some of them should not be elected offices (yeah, we shouldn’t be electing sheriffs, treasurers, recorders of deeds or wills, at any level of government).
Now, El Somnambulo has already posted his predictions for you. And he, along with our illustrious founder, Jason330, are very pessimistic, in their attitude, and in some of their predictions. I am a little more optimistic and realistic.
Here is the press release. Two things. 1) The sign taker in the video says something about the fact that the signs don’t include a candidate’s name. I don’t know enough about sign law to know if that is exculpatory. 2) I feel like the use of “Democrat Party” was an homage to my recent uptake of that shitty usage.
Some moderateish GOP Senator (who is actually a flaming conservative mouth breather but in today’s environment, he appears sane standing next to the likes of tea party), like Rob Portman, said recently that, for the GOP to win in 2016, it will have to govern between 2014 and 2016. There is just a little problem with that. Governing in a divided government means compromise with the President of the United States, unless of course your party controls enough seats to have veto-proof majorities. Even the rosiest scenario does not predict that for the GOP. And the GOP cannot impeach President Obama and Vice President Biden, for that will guarantee Democratic victory in 2016 everywhere, in every office, up and down the ballot. And yet, they are campaigning about stopping Obama if they should win the majority. You cannot stop Obama and then compromise with him.
First Read says Republicans have two big challenges to governing if they win control of both the House and Senate next week.
“One, after portraying Obama as either incompetent, ruthless, or both, how do Republicans sell any kind of deal with Obama back to their base? That’s the problem when your message, especially on the campaign trail, is entirely against the president. It makes cutting deals with him AFTER the election more difficult. Two, to pass legislation in the Senate, Mitch McConnell and Republicans will need to get 60 votes — and that means placating the GOP conservatives (including those running for president next year), the GOP moderates (Susan Collins and the folks up for re-election in 2016 like Mark Kirk, Kelly Ayotte, etc.), as well as centrist Democrats (Joe Manchin, Angus King, etc.). That won’t be an easy task.”
And come inside for the Governor polls I promised yesterday…
“How can the national polls look so bad for Democrats (see the NBC/WSJ/Annenberg and Washington Post/ABC polls), but the competitive Senate contests all be within the margin of error? Here’s an answer for you: There are two different midterm environments taking place in the country a week before Election Day. The first is the nationwide one, where there does seem to be a wave building for Republicans and where the GOP has a huge enthusiasm advantage. The second election, however, is taking place in the top Senate and gubernatorial battlegrounds, where Democrats have spent a tremendous amount of money building field organizations and getting (as best they can) their side fired up.”
“This tale of two different midterm elections — not too dissimilar from what we saw in 2012 where the national and battleground polls didn’t match up — also helps explain why House Democrats are in trouble in states not holding competitive races like in California, Minnesota and New York (after all, embattled GOP Rep. Michael Grimm could very well win).”
We have a lot of Senate polls here today, and tons of Governor polls tomorrow…
The tough races are really tough, the easy races are really easy. I know I’m not running the table, but I don’t know where I’ll falter. I just know that I will. If there’s a unifying theme, I think it’s that D’s will struggle in Delaware more than usual, which is exactly what I expect to happen nationwide. Hope I’m wrong. These predictions are also going up a week out, and there’s plenty of movement in some of the races.
With that depressing, but not hopeless, forecast out of the way, here we go:
United States Senate: Chris Coons over Kevin Wade, 58-40%, with Andrew Groff of the Green Party at 2%. I’ll be among the 2 percenters.
US Representative: This provides the true measure of how many people will vote Republican no matter what. Does Rose Izzo get over 30%? I’m going Carney 67%, Izzo 29%, with the Green and Libertarian candidates maybe getting 4%. For me, it’ll be August in November.
Attorney General: Matt Denn will win, does he break 60%?
Lots of buying and selling action in the trading markets since my last update. Who has crashed and who still has a little upside potential? Let’s take a look.
Senate: Chris Coons 0.98 (0.98) – Kevin Wade 0.01 (0.02)
House: John Carney 0.95 (0.99) – Rose Izzo 0.01 (0.01) Bernie August 0.04 (n/a)
Attorney General: Matt Denn 0.95 (0.93) – Ted Kittila 0.05 (0.07)
Treasurer: Chip Flowers 0.00 (0.39) – Sean Barney 0.48 (0.37) – Ken Simpler 0.48(0.17) – Sher Valenzuela 0.00
Auditor: Brenda Mayrack 0.48(0.43) – Tom Wagner 0.48 (0.47)
You could have made some money in the Treasurers race. Shorting Flowers at 0.40 and taking a long position in Simpler at 0.15 was the winning move.
As it stands now, other than simply guessing the Treasurer and Auditors races and winning the coin flip, I don’t see any profitable moves left. Simpler, for example, appears to be at his max trading value. Smart traders will probably be taking their Simpler profits off the table. But hey, this is politics so do “smart traders” exist? For instance, somebody placed some sentimental money on Bernie August, bidding him up to 0.04.
(Okay, it was me. There is still a week to go. Carney could still Bill Roth it.)
E.J. Dionne Jr. on some underappreciated facts about the 2014 Midterms:
Underappreciated fact No. 1: The number of Democratic seats that are not in play this year.
In planning its effort to take control of the Senate, Republicans shrewdly launched challenges to Democrats in states that would not automatically be on a GOP target list. “Broadening the map” is wise when you’re in a strong position. Two of the states on that extended list, Colorado and Iowa, have paid off for Republicans. [...] Just as striking is how many Democrats seem to have nailed down races the Republicans had once hoped to make competitive. This has narrowed the GOP’s path to a majority. Among them: Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota, Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Rep. Gary Peters of Michigan, who is likely to retain Sen. Carl Levin’s seat. Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia is also polling well, though he was always favored against former Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire is in a tougher race with former Massachusetts senator Scott Brown, but she has led most of the way.
[U]nderappreciated fact No. 2: How important economic issues have been in shoring up the party’s incumbents and in giving life to Democratic challengers in Georgia, Kentucky and (a much longer shot) South Dakota. [E]ndangered Democrats are campaigning on a different set of national concerns related to economic worries. These include equal pay for women, relief for student loan recipients and a minimum-wage increase. Several Democrats, including Shaheen and Michelle Nunn in Georgia, have made an issue of opposing the outsourcing of U.S. jobs overseas.
[U]nderappreciated fact No. 3: Given Obama’s low approval ratings, Republicans could have been running away with this thing. They’re not, because they look more extreme and out of touch than they did four years ago.
What do you do if you are a lazy do-nothing auditor who has been sucking on the government teet for 25 years, and someone asks to see your schedule? You try to wrap yourself in an expensive FOIA estimate and hope the request goes away. That was Wagner’s plan when Brenda Mayrack asked to see his schedule to check up on why his office has been chronically understaffed.
From Mayracks FB page:
* Is the State Auditor’s Office attending local job fairs? After not seeing the office on the list of attendees at a University of Delaware job fair for accounting students, we filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the State Auditor’s schedule: “For the year 2014, the public schedule of R. Thomas Wagner, Jr., including all meetings and public events.” The response from his office: “In order to construct information in response to request below and based what we have available in the Office, I estimate it will run approximately $1,191.” And that’s the cost for sending it by email so we didn’t incur any copying or mailing fees.
We all know that the NJ is working on the lastest Gannett revenue extraction scheme — the Newsroom of the Future — that mainly looks like a way to implement a staff reduction while re-orienting their attention to their website, rather than the paper. This article from the Nashville Scene provides some details of what is going on at The Tenneseean (another Gannett property going through the same thing):
So he says in this recording of a debate answer defending his vote for bailing out casinos. Smyk is — surprise — an ex-cop and the district he represents is the area where Bradley committed his crimes against children. And this career cop wants you to believe that the taxes paid by casinos are the equivalent of rape. A comment that completely diminishes the violence of real rape and completely devalues the real trauma endured by its victims. To be sure, plenty of Ds voted for this bailout too — but none of them would tell you they were somehow in the rape prevention business. His opponent, Marie Mayor, has a great response — that the revenues from casinos ought to be in use the fix Delaware infrastructure, which is exactly right. So the choice is between the R who wants to reduce the casino taxes vs the D who wants to help get our roads and bridges fixed. There’s no point in re-electing Smyk if the only people he plans to represent are a handful of casino owners.
Come inside for the video….
“Voter frustration with members of Congress is currently even higher than it was 2010 or 2006. Fully 68% of registered voters say they do not want to see most members of Congress reelected – 14 points higher than in 2010 and 19 points higher than in 2006. And roughly a third (35%) say they do not want their own representative reelected, compared with 32% four years ago and 26% eight years ago.”
“Yet unlike in those elections, when a single party controlled both the House and Senate, anti-incumbent sentiment now crosses party lines. Republican and Democratic voters are about equally likely to oppose the reelection of most representatives and their own member of Congress.”
Politico reported yesterday evening that the lawsuit — which was supposed to challenge Obama’s executive orders regarding Obamacare (and appease the impeachment caucus in the lead-up to the midterm elections) — hasn’t actually been filed yet. Now isn’t that emblematic of everything the Republican Party stands. Lots of sound and fury signifying nothing of substance.
You’ve seen his hand-painted signs along 13. He appearently wants the 9th to have its own currency or something. I don’t know, the font gets pretty small toward the bottom.
Anyway, for what it is worth, here is Campbell talking….
In an interview with the Jefferson Herald, King discussed a preliminary document produced during Catholic bishops’ recent synod that stated gays had “gifts” to offer the Christian community. [...] King was asked specifically whether he thought divorce or cohabitation were sins. The synod’s preliminary document had called for the church to respect divorced Catholics and stated that in regard to homosexual unions, “it has to be noted that there are cases in which mutual aid to the point of sacrifice constitutes a precious support in the life of the partners.”
“I think that I’ll not comment on that part,” King told the newspaper. “I’ll just say that what was a sin 2,000 years ago is a sin today, and people that were condemned to hell 2,000 years ago, I don’t expect to meet them should I make it to heaven. So let’s stick with that principle.”