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Endorsements Tracker: Courting State Legislators

Today The Fix calls your attention to washingtonpost.com's 2008 endorsement database -- giving you a quick snapshot of how the presidential candidates are doing when it comes to attracting support in key early states from state legislators.

Support from elected officials in Iowa, New Hampshire etc. is crucial -- not only does each member bring a political power base of his or her own, but they also serve as important validators for their preferred candidate within a community they know (and knows them) best.

Thanks to the yeoman's work of politics producer Sarah Lovenheim and a cadre of washingtonpost.com political interns, nearly 950 state legislators in the battleground states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Nevada, and Michigan were called and asked who they're supporting for president.

The full results, which will be constantly updated as the undecideds, well, decide, is online here. Questions, comments? Did we miss someone? Post in the comments section below, or drop an e-mail to PoliticsCalendar AT washingtonpost DOT com.

Here's a few highlights:

* In Iowa, it's no surprise that former Gov. Mitt Romney (Mass.) leads the Republican field in endorsements from state legislators. Romney has spent massive amounts of time and money in Iowa. His victory in the Ames straw poll in August proved his organizational heft, and polling continues to show him with a comfortable lead.

* We've written before about the strength of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (D-N.Y.) New Hampshire organization, and it's borne out in the endorsement from state legislators. A whopping 57 are already in Clinton's camp, roughly three times the number supporting Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.)

* Despite his financial and organizational struggles, Sen. John McCain's (Ariz.) early spadework in South Carolina has paid off. He has nearly 50 state legislators on his team, leaving Romney and former Sen. Fred Thompson (Tenn.) lagging well behind.

Quick Links to the Endorsement Tracker

* Iowa
* Michigan
* Nevada
* New Hampshire
* South Carolina

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 30, 2007; 8:18 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: KY-Senate: Is McConnell in Trouble?

Comments

Former Senator Fred Thompson is the only candidate that gets it. He makes decisions based on principles. Principles don't change. You have to stand for something and not change who you are based on the polls. That is what Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani have done and all of the Democrats do it. Give me a leader that will stand by his principles anyday versus someone that stands for everything.

I know many Republicans and conservatives that will stay home if Rudy Giuliani is the candidate. He does not represent our values as conservatives, and never will. Mitt Romney is a Republican-in-name-only (RINO ) that simply has everything else and nothing to do. "I guess I'll just try to buy the presidency". The White House isn't for sale! Conservatives will simply stay home and the Democrats will pick up additional seats in the House and probably get the 60 seats in the Senate they need to completely destroy our Country. Nice picture huh?

However, I think Fred can bring America back together, if that's even possible. America needs a rebirth of patriotism and honor. Republicans also need a rebirth. President Reagan was our last rebirth and he can never be duplicated. Fred Thompson will bring his own down-to-earth common sense to this country.. A little of the good old days of faith, federalism and family would do well for this country. If a conservative runs as a conservative, he will win!

Think of it this way: Eight years of another Clinton White House? Now if that is not a sufficient enough reason to pull together as a nation, and fight this socialist liberal takeover of our government, what is?

Folks, we are in for the fight of our lives, just as our young men and women are fighting for our freedoms in Iraq and Afghanistan, we must fight for our nation right here and now! I truly believe Fred Thompson is the one man who can pull this nation back together! Rudy Giuliani will just tear us apart.

Posted by: fkpaxson | October 31, 2007 11:29 PM | Report abuse

"snaploud - Try posting again in an hour after you have seen whether CC cleaned up the commentary. We have seen him correct mistakes called to his attention regularly, but it does not happen instantaneously.

Posted by: mark_in_austin"

It doesn't look like this one is going to get corrected.

Posted by: Snaploud | October 31, 2007 2:51 PM | Report abuse

sltiowa-sorry i couldnt respond back as quickly, i threw murtha's name out there only because of his millitary background. but then again any dem thats not ethically challenged is ok in my book.

Posted by: jaymills1124 | October 30, 2007 8:23 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27: I have waited months for you to apoligize for your false statements about me. Are you ready now???

Posted by: lylepink | October 30, 2007 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Clin - Don't waste time with an unthinking Clinton cheerleader like lylepink. He/she/it was in love with Clinton from the start and no amount of unpleasant investivative reporting will affect "it's" opinion.

As for me, well excuse me for straying off the boundaries of my officially established liberal reservation! Evidently, you have to check your brains in at the door if you wish to run with this mob.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Correction on my last post-- should be [aka mibrooks27], sorry for the error.

Posted by: lylepink | October 30, 2007 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Colin: Don't waste your time with MikeB [aka milbrooks27] This person has repeatedly mis-represented who he is and what he stands for. He has attacked me several times with false posts, and refusues to apologize. Zouk is a hero compared to this "Hillary Hater" and mis-information put out by him.

Posted by: lylepink | October 30, 2007 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Jay,

How is having Murtha any differnt than having a R? Based on the WSJ article I find him rather slimy. However, I guess having a D earmark things is acceptable, afterall they are D and we know there is good earmarks (i.e. D driven) and bad earmarks (i.e., R driven).

Posted by: sltiowa | October 30, 2007 6:03 PM | Report abuse

mark - Also, here is another link about globalization. It is from the BBC, but it is front page news all over Europe today:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/7069779.stm

It came out that more than half of the new jobs created in the U.K. went to guest worker immigrants - 52% - with an unknown number above and beyond that going to illegal immigrants. The U.K. follows the U.S. model of globalization and the rst of Europe is getting more protectionist every day. I wonder what they realy figure is for the U.S.? I'd bet that 3/4 of new jobs and virtually all jobs paying living wages go to guest workers. Globalization is madness, economic suicide. The voters have stated again and again that they either want it out and out ended or severely curbed, but Congress does nothing and the Democratic leadership actually takes money from the globalizeers, the outsourcing firms, the free traitors.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin - Quite so. And it goes on and on: Norman Hsu, Milberg Weiss, AARP and their new Medicare Dvantage provider, a whole slew of bankers and Wall Street investors buying off Democratic candidates. It's really sickening and there is no excuse for it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Blarg,
If by "governments being well positioned to make large initial investments that lead to savings down the road" you mean able to raise taxes to pay for that, I agree they are well positioned. I'm not sold on the idea of doing it necessarily (taxes never seem to get returned when the savings actually kick in). Compact fluorescent bulbs where I live cost 5-10 times as much as regular. I'm not breaking even yet but I am using less electricity (and replacing bulbs less). I am one of those people that advocates doing the little things like turning off lights/TV/PCs when people are not around, driving better, etc. I'd love to be able to tool around in a small car but my family is too big for that. And walking, while beneficial, is not exactly free - there is a cost to my time. If one really thinks about all the costs of going green, there are relatively few things where it saves money, especially in the near term. Don't take that to mean that I don't think it is beneficial to do what you can, but having the government mandate these costs to you through taxes or higher costs is problematic to the less well off.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Harry Reid and Jack Reed. Forgive my dyslexic misrepresentation of their names at
4:57P., please.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 5:47 PM | Report abuse

'if possible, after the election, i wouldnt mind new leadership in place. in the senate, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden '

Yeah, I like the idea of these two. They have gotten a lot bolder since becoming candidates and are actually taking some stands, so they'd be better I think than the current leadership, whioch is still caving too much.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Mike Brooks - from the most recent National Law Journal:
Lerach to pay $8M, serve 1 to 2 years in plea bargain

Amanda Bronstad / Staff reporter

Securities plaintiff's lawyer William Lerach pleaded guilty on Monday to a federal conspiracy charge as part of a criminal investigation into whether he paid kickbacks to named plaintiffs. Lerach, a former partner at Milberg Weiss, agreed to forfeit $7.75 million to the government, pay a $250,000 fine and serve one to two years in prison.

If I know about it, they did.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Pelosi and Reed are both "operatives" and overreached by becoming "leaders
-good point mark, plus the fact that years of being slapped down by repubicans and triangulating on every issue pretty much made those two into paper tigers. i guess if they grew spines we wouldnt be having this conversation.

Posted by: jaymills1124 | October 30, 2007 5:21 PM | Report abuse

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/columnists/carl_hiaasen/story/277443.html

Required reading for everyone here, a rare and serious editorial by Carl Hiaasen, written for the Miami Herald, titled "The allure of stinking campaign cash".

Read it as if your life depended upon it..becasue it really does.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Blarg--"Roo, have you heard about the Project for Excellence in Journalism analysis of campaign coverage? 63% of coverage is about the horse race, 17% about candidates' backgrounds. Policy proposals only account for 15% of all coverage. The media doesn't have a liberal bias; it has a bias towards being shallow and stupid."

Yeah, they actually "talked" about this--AS JUST ANOTHER ASPECT OF THE BOXING MATCH. It was surreal, they treated it completely as some curiosity they had nothing to do with. I imagine the announcer going

"...Annnnnnd in the rrreeeeeddd corrrneeerr Hillary "The Bomber" Cliiiiintttoooooonnnnn! Tooday weee have a speeecial! The rrrrringg is tilted in a fourrrrrrty-fiive degrrrreee aangle!"

Posted by: roo_P | October 30, 2007 4:59 PM | Report abuse

jaymills - I am biting on your leadership changes.

Pelosi and Reed are both "operatives" and overreached by becoming "leaders". Peter Principle at work. The Rs have nothing to brag about, either.

Boxer seems a lightweight to me, and Murtha is ethically challenged. Jack Reid could be a leader, I think, and so could Lindsey Graham. They get along with their own caucuses and with the other side's leaders.
They are not entrenched Committee seniors like Specter, Dodd, Biden, and McCain who are all very valuable in their positions of influence. None of these men are mere "operatives".

I would want to see one of the "blue dogs" like Jane Harman as Speaker - gets along across the aisle, respected on her own side.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Hedge funds are lining up to buy Northern Rock, and Countrywide popped in price big-time last week. Meaningful? Yes. When people who don't know their Alt-A's from their control-alt-deletes are waxing eloquent about the dangers of the mortgage markets, billionaires are quietly buying.

silly Libs, stay away from economics. there is so much you don't know.

Posted by: zoukrules | October 30, 2007 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Dave, compact fluorescent bulbs last 12x as long as normal bulbs and use 25% as much electricity. If you're not saving money by buying them, you're shopping at the wrong store.

And hybrid cars are far from the best way to save money on gas. A standard small car gets much better mileage than an SUV, and is cheaper. Or, if you want to spend absolutely no money, you can just change your driving habits, which can improve gas mileage by an estimated 35%. Or you can drive less in general, using either public transportation or your own legs. (Though that's not generally an option.)

Besides, JasonL is talking about the government. Governments are well-positioned to make large initial investments that lead to savings down the road. You might not be able to afford an on-demand water heater for your house. But when a municipality builds a new school, it can afford that heater, and save significantly over the lifetime of the school.

It's possible to oversell the financial benefits of being environmentally friendly. But you're dismissing the entire concept that it's possible to save both energy and money, based on a few flawed examples.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 4:46 PM | Report abuse

If it's not RUFAS, we get drindl. Do you moonbats ever come up for air?

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 30, 2007 4:40 PM | Report abuse

'Claudia comes along and touts her as some sort of cure for Bush. Clinton IS Bush...just dressed in drag.'

why do you attack and misrepresent anyone who doesn't agrre with what you say, MikeB? jeeezuz. I never said Clinton was acure for bush. I don't like her much because I think she's too corporate. I have said this plenty of times. That said, I think she would be marginally better than any of the R's, except possibly John McCain and he appears to be going nowhere. The rest of the field are car salesman, sleepy old mean and lunatics.

BTW, RUDY Bush -- same backers, same advisors, he's even listening to the ones who were too crazy for Bush. And he's making lots of money on this war. He was also the illegals best friend as Mayor of NY.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 4:25 PM | Report abuse

on topic-the problem with endorsements, it doesnt matter to a hill of beans. case in point:former Micigan govenor john engler endorsed duyba in the primaries, result-McCain wins the state, engler again endorses duyba and promises a "firewall" against gore in 2000. result-gore wins michgan. its nice to have a bunch of politians that not a whole lot of people have heard(with the exception of this blog) but the real endorsement is when the average voter goes and votes for their canidate.

Mibrooks-i would have to partially agree with you. ok sure the dem leadership are a pack of bumbling fools but corrupt? well its better to deal with pelosi and reid, and prod them to do the right thing rather than bohner and mcconnel and have our complaints fall on deaf ears(unless you have a 2,300 dollar check.)

if possible, after the election, i wouldnt mind new leadership in place. in the senate, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden or Barbra Boxer take over as Majority leader. the house would benefit from having someone like murtha or waxman take over as speaker or make history again by having a african american or hispanic become speaker.

anythoughts?

Posted by: jaymills1124 | October 30, 2007 4:18 PM | Report abuse

JasonL_in_MD,
It costs to become energy efficient. In the long run, many of things you suggest *might* save money. Swapping out lights for instance. I've done it in my house but at the price of fluorescent bulbs as compared to incandescent, I won't see any savings until 2012ish. Right now, I'm losing money on the deal due to the big up front investment. Then there is the problem of the pollution they cause when they do burn out which is more so than incandescents. There already is a tax on inefficient cars - the gas tax which is currently 23.5 cents per gal in MD and O'Malley is looking to increase it. So buy a Hybrid? Again, a big front end expense many can't afford and also the issue of what to do with the batteries at the end of their life. There are also the reports that many are more enviromentally unfriendly to make than regular cars. A lot of these things sound great - on demand hot water heaters, solar cells, etc but almost all come at a big price that is not affordable to many people. It's not that I am necessarily arguing against any of this, it just needs to be recognized that it comes at a regressive cost and it may not save any money, especially short term. And where we help with air pollution, we might pay for in the land fills filled with nickle and mercury.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Roo, have you heard about the Project for Excellence in Journalism analysis of campaign coverage? 63% of coverage is about the horse race, 17% about candidates' backgrounds. Policy proposals only account for 15% of all coverage. The media doesn't have a liberal bias; it has a bias towards being shallow and stupid.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Nice rant, JasonL. I completely agree. State and local governments should lead the way on energy efficiency. And once they can point to positive results, that will convince other governments to do the same thing. Ideally, we'd be able to fight global warming at the federal (if not international) level. But while there's good progress being made at the federal level, it's faster for states and cities to make changes.

I only have one minor quibble with what you said: You refer to "emissions *believed to be* responsible for global climate change". The weasel words aren't necessary.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Completely off-topic but I have been watching MSNBC's "Super Tuesday" politics coverage today--it is disgusting.

Chris Matthews (pimping his new book) is the worst offender but I have never EVER seen such an intense focus on the boxing match, gaffes, "looking presidential" completely trumping any type of policy analysis. It is shameful. The one bright spot has been David Schuster--hopefully they will fire one of these morons and give him a show.

Posted by: roo_P | October 30, 2007 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Dave!, it's a Faustian bargain we're making. Just because Walmart et al have full shelves and China is playing nice now, doesn't mean that the danger is any less real. In fact, the more we become dependent upon them (as they are upon us), perhaps the lesser the chance that they'll do something stupid, but the greater the damage should they decide to do so.

Would the economy 'tank', should we start playing hardball with the Chinese? It would be hurt some, but I'm confident enough American friends would pick up the slack before too long (including Taiwan, Mexico, and others where labor is cheap)

Posted by: JD | October 30, 2007 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Mike, it's incorrect and downright irresponsible to blame the new Dem majority in Congress for our current economy. It's been the last decade of lax regulation of the loan industry that's caused most of our problems. People shouldn't have been in the houses they bought and now we're all paying for it.

Lets look at some of the many people affected by low home sales:
1. Contractors
2. Manufacturers of all the materials that contractors use
3. Furniture sales and manufacturing
4. Realtors
5. The loan industry (even the good ones)

Now they're not making as much money so they're spending less money. Homeowners are worried about the value of their house and the stability of the market so they're not spending as much as they might be either.

Arguably, it's the Republicans fault but I won't blame anyone in particular and just call our current situation the result of a massive f*ck up by everyone involved.

This is something that gets me pretty angry. Did you know that a Californian emits about a third of the emissions believed to be responsible for global climate change compared to the average American? And California is one of the worlds largest economies. Hasn't seemed to hurt them. Here in MD, Governor Ehrlich ducked our budget problems by raising fees for everything from hunting licenses to vehicle registration. He could have started projects to make the government and the rest of MD more energy efficient thereby savings tons of money but he did nothing.

At some point we need to step up and say, "What we're doing now isn't cutting it." We need to get rid of incandescent lights, tax the bejeezus out of energy inefficient vehicles and appliances. Government and commercial buildings must be LEED rated. Investments like this will save everyone money in the long run (simple supply and demand), increase our security by decreasing reliance on foreign fuels, and set an example for other nations to follow to reduce emissions that will harm our very way of life.

Republicans and Democrats both need to look to our future and start protecting it. Being reactionary will never solve our problems. We need to see what the problems will be in the future and act on them now. Only by taking the initiative can we make this country into what it deserves to be.

Rant over.

Posted by: JasonL_in_MD | October 30, 2007 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Colin - The point I'm making is that the leadership of the Democratic Party is as money grubbing as the worst of the Republican's. It drives me crazy when I read about Ms. Clinton receiving millions of dollars in donations from health care companies and executives, from outsourcing firms, from Wall Street speculators and people like Claudia comes along and touts her as some sort of cure for Bush. Clinton IS Bush...just dressed in drag.

Likewise, Senator Kennedy was once a friend of working men and women. At least we thought he was. And, then, he wrote and attached riders to the disasterous immigration legislation that would have removed all caps from H1-B and L-1 visas and would have created thousands of new guest worker visa categories, none of them with any caps. Only an idiot hasn't figured out that guest workers, outsourcing, the "global economy", have been disasterous for working people. At best, people have to trade wages and benefits just to keep their jobs. At worst, they see them shipped over seas and loose their homes, cannot pay credit card and cell phone and hospital and other bills. They are traped by the new bankruptcy legislation and have their lives ruined. The Democratic response has been to propose lengthening the period of unemployment compensation for AMercian's loosing their jobs to this lunacy.

I read statistical data and I am frankly amazed that, as of today, the Democratic Party is drwing more corporate and wealthy donations than the Republican's have drawn in their entire history; not just more money, but more money as a percentage of total contributions! It's disheartening and it's sickening. Who stands for the Middle Clas? Who stands for working men and women and families? Apparently, no one.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Mike -- Also, the administration sets economic policy so you're ridiculously off base in blaming the currently weak US dollar on a Democratic Congress that hasn't even been in office for a year. You're a smart guy and it really saddens me when you make sweeping accusations that are illogical.

Posted by: _Colin | October 30, 2007 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Mike -- It's Paul Hacket, first of all. And the guy the "leadership" supported (Sherrod Brown) is probably the SINGLE biggest booster you have in fighting free trade deals and outsourcing. Seriously, look the guy up. He's pretty fantastic on all the issues you say you care about. I liked and liked Paul Hacket too, but Brown is very solid.

Posted by: _Colin | October 30, 2007 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Calaudialong is playing this right out of the Clinton hqndbook - attack the attacker and NEVER answer a direct question.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Caludia, I don't hate Democrats, I merely loathe the current leadership. You know, the same ones that pulled the rug out from under David Hackworth when he ran for COngress. The problem is with crooks and money and the Democratic Party is rapidly becoming as awful and wretched and corript as the Republican Party. So, instead o tossing off cheap and meaningless insults, ANSWER THE QUESTION!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

snaploud - Try posting again in an hour after you have seen whether CC cleaned up the commentary. We have seen him correct mistakes called to his attention regularly, but it does not happen instantaneously.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 2:48 PM | Report abuse

"A whopping 57 are already in Clinton's camp, roughly three times the number supporting Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.)"

Hillary has 57 in New Hampshire. Barack has 32. 32 goes into 57 less than two times. That means Clinton has less than two times the support of Barack Obama (not almost three times).

Posted by: Snaploud | October 30, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

'Since early 2002 the dollar has been on a steep downward path: on JPMorgan's trade-weighted real exchange rate it has depreciated by 23 per cent since February 2002. '

Mikeb, your hatred of democrats has made you as irrational as zouk.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 2:38 PM | Report abuse

"A whopping 57 are already in Clinton's camp, roughly three times the number supporting Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.)"

Hillary has 57. Barack has 32. Do some basic math, Chris.

Posted by: Snaploud | October 30, 2007 2:31 PM | Report abuse

In case you missed it, since the Democratic Congress took charge in January, the dollar has fallen 26% compared to *every* major European currency. As reported by the BBC, the expectation is that the Fed will cut interest rates by 1/4 percent, which will exasorbate the situation as they expect it to spark an inflation run with oil, every sort of manufactured product from washing machines to cars to computers to clothing climbing by as much as 20%. At the same time, the most widely traded stocks, the most lucrative stocks are now all in foreign markets...the four highest are Chinese!

The disasterous trade and economic policies of Hillary Clinton and the Democratic leadership, their willingness to sell out ordinary working men and women for campaign contributions from the Wall Street swindlers, has demonstrated their moral bankruptcy and callose disregard of the good of the people. Anyone voting for anyone on the Clinton endorsement list is a suicidal fool.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

This is what I mean by amorality, Dave...

'Lawmakers are advancing efforts to curtail energy giant Chevron's activities in Myanmar, which provide significant financial support for the ruling military junta. The regime is responsible for recent violence against democracy activists.

Chevron is part of a multi-billion-dollar consortium that extracts and transports natural gas from the country, which has suffered weeks of violence by government troops against Buddhist monks, students and other pro-democracy activists, according to experts and human rights groups.

Much of the ruling junta's financial support comes from the royalties and other revenue paid by Chevron and the other members of the gas operation. The group paid more than $2 billion to the Myanmar government last year, according to the group Human Rights Watch.'

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

In Iowa, with their "group meet" caucus system, I think state legislative endorsements are important.

It means "boots on the ground" organizations pushing a candidate forward in the caucus.

And, the Iowa endorsements are interesting for other reasons. Out of 54 endorsements for Dem candidates, Hillary (17), with the "support" of former governor Vilsack, has a scant three more than Obama (14) and five more than Biden (12).

Edwards, who has been campaigning almost continuously since 2004 in Iowa, has garnered just 8, the WaPo-favored second tierer Dodd (who has been campaigning hard in Iowa) only 3, while Richardson has no endorsements... not surprising since he is focusing his fire on the southwest.

Regardless of the polls, Hillary is vulnerable in Iowa. We'll see January 3.

http://whathappenedtomycountry.blogspot.com

Posted by: Truth_Hunter | October 30, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

'drindl, if Alito recused himself it is because we do respect the doctrine of conflict of interest.

--His stock ownership colors his thinking, mark. He rules reliably in favor of corporate interests over individuals. He's also had other energy companies in front of him and not recused. Don't you think he's heistant to do something that might hurt the industry that he's so heavily invested in? And how about politicians, like Cheney, who are making lots of money in Iraq--they don't have much motivation to end the war, do they? And that includes RG who is probably profiting moe than anyone on Iraq contracts --who cna't wait to start 5 more wars. The whole system has become riddled with corruption and i'm talking about Dems too. I think Dems are marginally better on middle class issues but I don't trust them either.

Tell me what you think of this?

'WASHINGTON -- Rep. Walter B. Jones of North Carolina has introduced a bill to prevent the use of U.S. military force in war without the consent of Congress.

The bipartisan legislation would amend the United States War Powers Resolution of 1973, which was passed in response to the extended Vietnam War.

Jones submitted the bill Sept. 25 and announced it Thursday at a press conference with three of five co-sponsors. One of them, Rep. Bill Delahunt of Massachusetts, a Democrat, is a member of the House subcommittee on foreign affairs which will first hear the bill. Also present were Rep. Ron Paul of Texas and Rep. Wayne Gilchrest of Maryland, both Republicans. The other co-sponsors are Rep. Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii and and Rep. Robert Brady of Pennsylvania, both Democrats.'

http://www.newbernsj.com/news/bill_37205___article.html/war_jones.html

wonder what that's abot?

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

JD,
"We should be quite wary of them, and it wouldn't bother me in the slightest if we banned ALL trade with that country." It might when you went to the store and the shelves were empty. Or the economy tanked because the stock market crashed from the US companies that could no longer do business there. I'm kinda siding with Mark_in_Austin on this one.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

'Well, they have an interest in selling goods to us and making money off of those goods. If they start to kill their customers, that would probably not be good for business, not only in the US but around the world. And labeling a billion and a half Chinese "amoral" is probably just a wee bit of an exaggeration.'

Some of their products already have killed people here, dave. I didn't say Chinese products were amoral, I said corporations are amoral -- that is the nature of them. Their fiduciary obligation is to make a profit any way they can. Every year people are killed by products known to be faulty, and drugs known to be toxic, which are marketed by a cost benefit ratio: will I make more money than I will pay out in damages? that's the way the market functions.

A good example is Merck. A lot of people died from Vioxx.They knew that would happen but released it anyway. My own father had a stroke. But they have great PR and lawyers, have barely paid a cent, and the stock has recovered nicely, and they are selling well and sitting pretty. So what's to stop them from doing it again? Absoutely nothing.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Arcinth, it would be nice to know which Clark County, Nevada officials back Hillary since many of our Clark County officials later are charged and found guilty of taking bribes and other crimes. Their backing of Hillary would only confirm her ruthlessness and those of some of our elected officials. It's time for voters to sweep these officials out of office and to elect someone with integrity who cares about the little guy and not the guy who can pad their campaign coffers or bring in the votes of voters who pay a blind eye and deaf ear to their indiscretions.

In the last Presidential election all the conservatives helped to put Bush back into office, and now they are lamenting their deicsion. They knew then that he was not making the right decisions for America but voted for him anyway. Now it's too late. The American voter cannot make the same mistake this time. Hillary is wrong for the coutry at this time and many know it but are not willing to face that fact. Wake up America voters. Vote for change. Vote for a new and better America. Vote for Obama.

Posted by: Nevadaandy | October 30, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I think you may need to go back and check these again. There is no way some of the legislators that you have endorsing Mitt Romney in MI are actually endorsing Mitt Romney such as Andy Meisner. I knew the list was crap the second I saw that. Andy Meisner supported Dean in 2004.

Posted by: Joshmsu | October 30, 2007 12:30 PM | Report abuse

If the Obama campaign looked around for computers and Dell happened to give them the best price and they bought a couple thousand, do they need to excuse themselves from every PC decision that might include Dell? I guess they would or it would be a COI as Dell has done them a huge favor by saving them gobs of money. If that is the approach, then not a lot is going to get done as we are all involved with the big bad corps or the big bad labor groups." -Dave

Interestingly enough, I heard on the radio from a former associate of Janet Reno that she always paid sticker price for her cars so as to never feel even slightly beholden to anyone.
----
"JasonL, I think that people who aren't into politics probably don't care about these endorsements either. First, they probably didn't hear about the endorsements. It's a lot easier to read about Obama's policies than find out whether your local delegate endorsed him." -Blarg

I think that's true of people who don't vote in primaries. The primary electorate is mostly made up of people who are dedicated to our political system, but maybe not as into it as we are. I'm just saying that is a sizable population that might rely on this guidance from people they trust, which in some cases is elected officials.

Posted by: JasonL_in_MD | October 30, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Claudia, I pay attentionto this sort of stuff. I want to know who the crooks and politcial hacks are and those endorsing Clinton provide a convenient list of scumbags that we can do without. Before the current mess is over, believe me, A LOT of people will take note of that list!

Also, you still haven't explained away the corruption of the Democratic leadership. If they take more than twice as much money from the health care industry lobbyests, twice as much money from Wall Street speculator yuppies, and banks and credit card companies, and data warehousing/privacy invasion firms, twice as much as the Republican party, and they support legislation to to offshore jobs (oh, just private sector jobs, not public employee jobs...), introduce legislation to permit corporations bringing in millions of guest workers used to displace Amercian workers, etc. etc....with all of that, then, please explain to us why we ought not think of the Democratic leaderships as a corrupt bunch of money grubbing swine that are as bad as the worst of the Republican's? Oh, and need I mention that Hillary has been shown to have taken three times as much corporate money as her nearest competitive crook, the Bush-Cheney disaster, and she isn't even nominated yet.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | October 30, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

JD, we would be better served by insisting that the WTO adopt the ILO standards that the west and Japan adhere to. That might have the same effect - huge tariffs on China until they comply.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 12:14 PM | Report abuse

drindl, I looked at the YouTube reference.

I remind you that JB has said that RG knows less about foreign policy than any candidate running and that only JMcC had a real grasp of foreign policy on the R side.

I was not entirely convinced 'til Podhoretz, last night, on Lehrer.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Dave!, I'm pretty sure drindl meant to say that the Chinese *Government* is amoral. After all, there's 1.2b of them over there, talk about painting with a broad brush.

China is far more of an enemy to US interests than is commonly known among Americans. We should be quite wary of them, and it wouldn't bother me in the slightest if we banned ALL trade with that country.

Posted by: JD | October 30, 2007 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Blarg - The search and seizure cases under the Fourth Amendment permit completely warrantless searches of all material inbound over our borders as a matter of sovereignty/border security. Incoming cargo, mail, persons, telcons, and internet messages are all subject to search.

The technical problem for lawyers trying to grasp FISA modernization is your example. NSA actually monitors all internet traffic for key words and phrases but needs FISA warrants
to focus on Americans or outgoing communications. I was hoping you would say that we now can delineate "originated in Poland" from "originated in Boston".

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Mark: I suppose it's possible to find that out in real time, if they put enough effort into it. But it's not difficult to appear to come from a different location. I'm posting from a computer in Boston. If I connected to a server in Poland, then came here, it would look to washingtonpost.com like I was in Poland. Hackers do it all the time. Why do you ask?

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 12:00 PM | Report abuse

"What possible interest do they have in our interests? And in fact, they may seek to purposefully harm us." Well, they have an interest in selling goods to us and making money off of those goods. If they start to kill their customers, that would probably not be good for business, not only in the US but around the world. And labeling a billion and a half Chinese "amoral" is probably just a wee bit of an exaggeration.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 11:52 AM | Report abuse

drindl, if Alito recused himself it is because we do respect the doctrine of conflict of interest.

Blarg, can NSA tell if an internet transmission originated outside the US, in real time?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 11:48 AM | Report abuse

' If the Obama campaign looked around for computers and Dell happened to give them the best price and they bought a couple thousand, do they need to excuse themselves from every PC decision that might include Dell?'

If they own stock in it, yes.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 11:45 AM | Report abuse

'First off, why is it that it is taken for granted that the public's best interest and multi-national corporations interests can't be the same (or must be against each other)?'

Let's just put it this way--a corporation, particularly one based in a foreign country, perhaps a country that is hostile to the US--why should they care what happens to US citizens? What's it to them if we are poisoned by their products, or they pollute our air or water? China is a real good example of that. My point is, they are amoral. If we are harmed, it is nothing to them. What possible interest do they have in our interests? And in fact, they may seek to purposefully harm us.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 11:43 AM | Report abuse

claudialong,
"Guiliani, Alito, is there any politician in this country who isn't compromised, who isn't utterly owned by mutl-national corporations, who have their own agenda that has nothing to do with the public interest?" First off, why is it that it is taken for granted that the public's best interest and multi-national corporations interests can't be the same (or must be against each other)? Talk of evil corporations out to get the innocent public is a bit disingenuous (he says sipping his Starbucks that he picked up driving his Toyota using gas from Exxon). But onto your question. I would say likely no, unless you have lived in solitare off the land in the middle of nowhere. If the Obama campaign looked around for computers and Dell happened to give them the best price and they bought a couple thousand, do they need to excuse themselves from every PC decision that might include Dell? I guess they would or it would be a COI as Dell has done them a huge favor by saving them gobs of money. If that is the approach, then not a lot is going to get done as we are all involved with the big bad corps or the big bad labor groups.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Mark, from Josh Marshall, respected political reporter: Watch the short piece, everything you need to know about RG:

'Tonight we were shooting a TPMtv run-down of the list of whackjobs Rudy Giuliani has advising him on foreign policy. And believe me, that's not hyperbole: Rudy's national security 'brain trust' basically amounts to all the neocons and Arab-haters who were too extreme to cut it on the Bush team.'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IHfel3twH0w

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 11:30 AM | Report abuse

"Born in the USA" is a more explicit protest song than anything on "Magic". But the chorus sounds upbeat if you don't listen to the verses, so stupid people think it's patriotic. Same with Neil Young's "Rocking in the Free World".

And you're exaggerating. I've heard tracks from "Magic" on the radio, just not on Clear Channel stations. They don't have a monopoly; they just have more influence than they should. If they choose not to play a popular album for a stupid reason, they'll lose business to another giant radio conglomerate.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

JasonL, I think that people who aren't into politics probably don't care about these endorsements either. First, they probably didn't hear about the endorsements. It's a lot easier to read about Obama's policies than find out whether your local delegate endorsed him.

But the bigger problem with these endorsements is that the endorsee is so much bigger than the endorser. (I know "endorsee" isn't a word. Play along.) If you aren't into politics, you still know who Hillary Clinton is. But you probably don't know who your state senator or county councilman is. So hearing that he's endorsed Hillary isn't likely to affect your vote. I'm sure there are people who are close to their local officials but not into national politics, but that's not a common situation.

Posted by: Blarg | October 30, 2007 11:17 AM | Report abuse

'Bruce Springsteen should be very happy. He has the No. 1 album, a possible Grammy for Best Album of the Year for "Magic," an album full of singles and a sold-out concert tour.

Alas, there's a hitch: Radio will not play "Magic." In fact, sources tell me that Clear Channel has sent an edict to its classic rock stations not to play tracks from "Magic." But it's OK to play old Springsteen tracks such as "Dancing in the Dark," "Born to Run" and "Born in the USA."

So much for' freedom' The rightwing Clear Channel has such a monopoly lock on radio in this country that the number one album is not being played--because the singer has spoken out agianst the war.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 11:09 AM | Report abuse

'Though no candidate emerged from the Summit as a clear Christian right favorite, the badly underfunded former Arkansas governor and Baptist minister Mike Huckabee won over the audience with his insistence that banning abortion would put an end to America's illegal immigration problem.'

HUh?

'Neoconservative activist Frank Gaffney appeared at the Summit as well. Before a standing room audience, Gaffney exclaimed that "by not being bigoted and not being racist, [George W.] Bush has embraced Islamofascists on several occasions." Phyllis Schlaffly echoed Gaffney's comments, declaring that there are too many mosques in America.'

What is wrong with these people's minds? I really think the so-called 'conservatives' have just gone completely insane. When will someone call them on this lunatic rambling?

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 11:05 AM | Report abuse

rpinNH: The media has to a large degree supported Obama, IMO, this goes back to the "Rock Star" spin early on. Articles, to a degree, about the two are potrayed as favorable to Obama and negative to Hillary. This goes back to before Bubba was elected and continues to this day. I am a strong supporter of Hillary and may be seeing this with a biased eye, although I hope not.

Posted by: lylepink | October 30, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

I watched Norman Podhoretz and the WaPo's friend, Fareed Zakaria, interviewed together about Iran last night on Lehrer.

If you can find it on line, watch it and judge for yourself. To me, Podhoretz seems divorced from any sense of proportion, and Zakaria seems the soul of pure reason.

I could not support RG if he becomes the R candidate if Podhoretz or a similarly peculiar counselor is shaping his foreign policy ideas. I could not support RG if he supports torture as policy, or if he favors the theory of the "unitary executive".


Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

'Yesterday, the conservative front group Family Security Matters (FSM) released its list of "The Ten Most Dangerous Organizations in America." Among the top 10 "hate" organizations were MoveOn.org, the Center for American Progress, and "Universities and Colleges."

This is another example of the pure insanity that has enguled the rgitwing in this country. 'Universities and colleges' are now DANGEROUS HATE ORGANIZATIONS. 'Family Security Matters' backs Guiliani, btw. Someone should ask him if all teachers are terrorists.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 10:46 AM | Report abuse

To those that think that endorsements count for little, remember that we're all clearly very active in politics. I'd bet that the majority of our non-troll posters donate to or volunteer for campaigns. We're a little too close to the action to see the effects of these endorsements. There are a lot of Americans who are likely primary voters that don't think about and analyze politics and politicians the way we do. They look to their local politicians for guidance. Here in MD 3 Delegates and 1 Senator represent each district. In some of them, it's quite common to see your delegate with some regularity. Prince Georges county is especially close to their delegates for whatever reason.

Mark, I'd like to discuss SS reform, but I think I'll let the topic pan out a bit more before we jump back into that.

Posted by: JasonL_in_MD | October 30, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Way off topic, there was an interesting story in WSJ on Murtha and pork projects. Murtha didn't invent prok, but he sure is good at it.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119371051667975920.html?mod=hpp_us_editors_picks

Posted by: sltiowa | October 30, 2007 10:41 AM | Report abuse

They could get really granular with this and add endorsements of local activists and county party chairs, etc. That seems like a bit much, though. Besides, about 90% of those endorsements are pretty worthless.

Posted by: arcinth | October 30, 2007 10:40 AM | Report abuse

arcinth, along the same line of thought:

50+ years ago, Galveston was like New Orleans, an "easy" city. The Madame who ran all the brothels registered her prostitutes -
more than 100 of them - and they voted as a bloc. This allowed her to actually have some leverage with the Sheriff and the County Attorney about "playing nice".

Her "endorsement" elected Babe Schwartz County Attorney, then State Legislator, and finally State Senator, where he served until he was the oldest serving member.

Of course hers was not a well publicized endorsement, then, but in today's media environment it might pass muster.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 10:35 AM | Report abuse

question for you, CC--

"Hillary and Obama are kind of debating whether to invite [Osama bin Laden and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad] to the inauguration or the inaugural ball," says Rudy Giuliani. Andrew's right. This guy is out of his godd*mn mind.

You know, a few years ago, Sally Quinn wrote an article explaining why elite Washington had united against Bill Clinton. In it, David Broder famously said that, "He came in here and he trashed the place, and it's not his place." He got a lot of flack for that comment. But it gets at an important truth: That the media does, indeed, come together to repel perceived threats. In Clinton's case, it was a gauche striver. He was a threat to DC's prestige, or vision of itself. Not the greatest danger in the world, but the media was quite effective in kneecapping him.

So what of Rudy? Rudy, after all, is a danger to the world. Every reporter in this town knows that he's become a pandering lunatic. Why doesn't Time have cover stories asking "Is Giulianie out of his #($*^ mind!?" Why aren't the Sunday shows filled with horrified reporters agreeing to disagree about much of the race, but uniting against the apocalyptic stupidity on evidence in the Giuliani campaign? Why aren't the various horserace reporters fitting every successive foreign policy pronouncement into an overarching narrative of Giuliani's crazed belligerence, "which is causing serious doubts about his campaign among some in the GOP?"

There is precedent for all this. And in Giuliani's case, the threat has the added benefit of being true. You don't need to make anything up, invent any scandals, concoct any problems. You just have to honestly evaluate the words coming out of Giuliani's mouth, the rhetoric coming out of his campaign, and the advisers circling the candidate. It's all there. There's no bl*wjob, I know, but there's a real threat, and the media should, in its role as guardian of some minimal level of competency within the political process, be pointing out that this man is dangerous, his statements scary, his campaign unsettling, and his advisers insane. His is not a normal candidacy, and so long as the reporters continue treating it as the equivalent of Hillary Clinton's campaign rather than Pat Buchanan's, we're in trouble.'

How about it, CC? Hw about some reportage on the madman Guiiani?

Mark, I did read Barone's piece-- it was the first sane thing I have ever read of his. Not that i agree with it all -- but look at what Guiliani said. This from someone who wants to be taken seriously as a presidential candidate--excuse me? I've never heard a Democrat utter anything this childish, this inane, this inflammatory, this utterly ridiculous. what in God's name has happened to the Republican party? To the media? To the discourse of this country? Why aren't you and other reasonable people calling him on this crap? This man IS insane, just listen to what he says. Christ, as president he'd make Bush look like Lincoln.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I'm impressed at how well Biden is doing in Iowa and SC. The media seems disinterested, but I think he's going to surprise people by election day.

Posted by: soonerthought | October 30, 2007 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Are there any plans to track endorsements by county and municipal officials? These often have a bit more heft than state leg/senate endorsements. Clark County, Nevada, for example. Then again, that'd at least double the workload of your poor interns. Just a thought.

Posted by: arcinth | October 30, 2007 9:52 AM | Report abuse

In New Hampshire, it seems like we have a State Rep or Senate for every 10 people. I think those endorsements are nice, but probably have little impact on the typical voter. It shows that the candidates have courted these folks, often at the expense of the "average" guy.

Watch Obama, his folks have targeted the average folks. In my little seacoast town (North Hampton) I know of more Obama supporters than Hillary supporters. Despite the Inside the Beltway Media's efforts to crown Hillary before any primaries, I still find many more folks enthusiastic about Obama as compared to Clinton.

Posted by: rpinNH | October 30, 2007 9:45 AM | Report abuse

In looking at the endorsements in South Carolina where I do some lobbying work, I find that Rudy having 0 endorsements by the current members of the legislature interesting. If he does not come out of Iowa, New Hampshire or South Carolina with a win, I do not see how he gets the nomination. I am surprised at McCain's strength with the Republican Legislature and the lack of support for Romney (who is spending ALOT of time there) and Thompson.

In the end, maybe splitting the conservative vote between Huckabee, Thompson, Romney and McCain will help Rudy.

Posted by: jmr1601 | October 30, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/29/AR2007102902006.html

'Ten months into his presidential bid, Rudolph W. Giuliani continues to work part time at the security consulting firm he promised to leave this past spring to focus on his pursuit of the Republican nomination.

Giuliani's continuing involvement with a firm catering to corporate clients makes him unique among Republican contenders. It also complicates the task of separating his firm's assets from his campaign spending.'

Here Guiliani is, running for president, running a company which makes lots of money on government contracts, which specifically, in fact, makes lots of money in Iraq. We used to have some understanding of conflicts of interest in this country, we even found cheerleading a war while profiting from it repugnant, but apparently, anything goes now. You wanna talk about 'moral relativism'? Guiliani, Alito, is there any politician in this country who isn't compromised, who isn't utterly owned by mutl-national corporations, who have their own agenda that has nothing to do with the public interest? We have turned into a cheesy banana republic.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I agree with the previous posts about endorsements with this exception--When one of the top tier drops out and then does endorse one of the others, it seems logical that a lot of his/her supporters would follow. This seems to be in the works after the Iowa caucus, where Edwards is seen to be losing support on a daily/weekly basis according to polls. McCain has to be included as well, and there is a remote possibility that he will drop out, as I have said for some time, he will, during the campaign.

Posted by: lylepink | October 30, 2007 9:33 AM | Report abuse

and this...

'Foreign fighters are coming from Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Chechnya, various Arab countries and perhaps also Turkey and western China, Afghan and American officials say.

Their growing numbers point to the worsening problem of lawlessness in Pakistan's tribal areas, which they use as a base to train alongside militants from Al Qaeda who have carried out terrorist attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Europe, according to Western diplomats.'

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/30/world/asia/30afghan.html?_r=1&ref=todayspaper&oref=slogin

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 9:25 AM | Report abuse

ok, mark, I will read it--I trust your judgement. the news this mornin is paining me greatly, everything I look at makes me want to weep:

'WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. military commander in Iraq warned Prime Minister Nouri Maliki in May that the country's biggest dam is at risk of collapse, endangering the city of Mosul. But a report to be published today says little progress has been made, largely because of mismanagement of U.S. reconstruction money.

The May letter from Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, cosigned by the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, warns that the dam, just up the Tigris River from the northern city of Mosul, could fail. That puts the city's 1.7 million people at risk of being inundated by a 65-foot flood wave. The letter is included in an audit to be published today. The report found that little or no progress had been made to shore up the Mosul Dam since the May warning, largely because a $27-million project funded by the U.S. has been plagued by mismanagement and fraud.'

http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/asection/la-fg-mosul30oct30,1,3945144.story?coll=la-news-a_section

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 9:23 AM | Report abuse

drindl - I am reposting the citation to the Barone article for you.

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=YWM1NTI1OTJlOTM4MzZjMDllNjVkNDYxM2NhMGUyNjg=


Even a blind hog will find an acorn, now and then.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 9:19 AM | Report abuse

'Why do they hate us? No, I'm not talking about Islamofascist terrorists. We know why they hate us: because we have freedom of speech and freedom of religion, because we are a free society.

No, the "they" I'm referring to are the editors of The New York Times.;'

That would be your Michael Barone, Mark. he also said this:

'Our covert enemies are harder to identify, for they live in large numbers within our midst. And in terms of intentions, they are not enemies in the sense that they consciously wish to destroy our society. On the contrary, they enjoy our freedoms and often call for their expansion. But they have also been working, over many years, to undermine faith in our society and confidence in its goodness. These covert enemies are those among our elites who have promoted the ideas labeled as multiculturalism, moral relativism and (the term is Professor Samuel Huntington's) transnationalism.'

You know, we're the covert enemy, right, Mark? How can you take seriously anything this character says? He's a demagogue, an utterly transparent hack.

jeezus.

'Exxon says the award was excessive, particularly since it has already paid $3.4 billion relating to the spill, but the Court emphasized that it will only consider how the issue relates to maritime laws. Exxon seems to have the upper hand in the case but its prospects for victory are complicated by Justice Samuel Alito's decision to recuse himself because he owns stock in the company.'

I don't suppose a Supreme Court Justice owning stock in Exxon is a conflict of interest or anything... what a truly pathetic state we're in--what a sad, sad time.

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Finally, claudialong, I think we are in agreement on something. Not only do I agree that you could count the number of voters that care about this on one hand, but I think that endorsements are the biggest waste of news space during an election cycle, and given what is covered, that says a lot.

Posted by: dave | October 30, 2007 8:57 AM | Report abuse

drindl, some endorsements are a litmus test for the most committed partisans. This is not anything but an educated guess: In Austin, the endorsement of a prez candidate by the UT Young Rs is worth enough votes to be worth courting. The endorsements of the West Austin Ds and UTYDs are worth courting.
The clubs publish their reasons for endorsing, have many inactive members who rely on the active ones, and will drive voters to the polls.
Rick Perry's endorsement of RG may not be worth a single opinion but it is probably worth money and a phone call list.
------------------------
Off topic: no one seems to have read about the 2d A. proud cited an interesting Mike Barone commentary on the directionless parties - thanks. Jason asked a difficult question about permitting SS to invest privately. It was directed partly to me, and my short answer would be "I have yet to imagine how it could be done."

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 30, 2007 8:52 AM | Report abuse

I wonder is there's a voter alive who pays any attention to this?

Posted by: drindl | October 30, 2007 8:38 AM | Report abuse

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