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Morning Fix: Do Democrats Have a Fundraising Problem?



Do Democrats have a cash problem?

President Obama will headline a fundraising dinner tonight to benefit Democrats' House and Senate campaign arms but the relatively modest haul expected -- $3 million -- is the latest piece of evidence that the party's expected fundraising advantage over Republicans has yet to materialize.

"With the White House and Congress, you'd think that Governor [Tim] Kaine and the DNC would be breaking all kinds of records," said one prominent Democratic fundraiser granted anonymity to speak candidly.

Over the first four months of 2009, the Republican National Committee had raised nine million more than the Democratic National Committee and had more than double the amount of cash in the bank -- $24.4 million to $9.1 million.

Congressional Republicans were also surprisingly competitive with their Democratic counterparts. The National Republican Senatorial Committee had raised just $800,000 less than the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee as of the end of April and the two organizations had almost equal amounts of cash on hand. On the House side, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee outraised the National Republican Congressional Committee two to one but showed just $300,000 more on hand at the end of April.

What gives?

Explanations vary as do assessments of whether the current state of Democratic fundraising is a cause for concern or simply a temporary blip on the radar.

The most common reason cited for the slowdown in Democratic money is the state of the economy, which makes donors far less likely to open their wallets for political giving. Of course, Republicans are raising money in that same environment so it's hard to see that as the lone reason.

Democrats also note that Kaine, who will serve as governor of Virginia until January 2010, has not been able to keep as active a fundraising schedule as past chairmen but will pick up the pace once the new year rolls around. Of course, Kaine recently was raising money in Chicago -- including an event with White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel that collected upwards of $500,000 for the DNC.

Perhaps the most intriguing explanation for the Democratic slowness is the fact that many of the major donors who provide the backbone for the party committees' fundraising in an off year are either tapped out from their efforts on behalf of Obama last year or are in government or angling to be in government and, therefore, not actively raising or donating money. "The infrastructure of the major donor program has been decimated," said one prominent Democratic cash-collector.

It's hard to see the current slowdown in fundraising drastically impacting either the DNC or the president long term given his demonstrated capacity to collect scads of campaign cash. Obama raised better than three million for the DNC at an event in Los Angeles on May 28 and the president also collected a significant amount of money for the DNC at an Indiana event on May 17. Those two events alone should help the DNC in its May report, which will be filed later this week with the Federal Election Commission. And, Obama, who raised $750 million for his 2008 race, should have little trouble cresting the $1 billion mark in 2012.

The real question is whether the combination of donor fatigue, the economic downturn and, according to some within the party, the White House's relative lack of involvement to date in congressional fundraising will leave the House and Senate committees without the financial advantage many expected them to enjoy in 2010.

Given the history of first midterm elections of a sitting president -- the president's party almost always loses House seats -- an even playing field financially could complicate Senate Democrats efforts to grow their majority into the 60+ range and to keep House Democrats losses to a minimum.

Thursday's Fix Picks: If Thursday is the new Friday, then Friday is the new [fill in the blank].

1. NBC/WSJ poll shows economic doubts remain toward Obama Administration policies.
2. President Obama extends benefits to same sex couples. Is it enough?
3. John Edwards explains.
4. Democrats Win! (The Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game, that is.)
5. The new iPhone 3G S is here.

D-Day in Minnesota?: Rumors flew hot and heavy in the political blogosphere over the past 24 hours that the Minnesota Supreme Court would announce its ruling in former senator Norm Coleman's (R) election challenge today. "Politics in Minnesota," a local news site in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, cited two sources that claim today is the day the ruling will be handed down. The Fix checked with our own sources late last night and those close to the court case say no official word has been given regarding the timing of the decision. The expectation in Minnesota and nationally is that if the Court refuses to intercede in the contest, which Democrat Al Franken currently leads by 312 votes, then Coleman is likely to drop his appeals and leave the race rather than pursue further legal options at the federal level. If Coleman does bow out, expect Democrats to move quickly to seat Franken as he will be the 60th Democrat in the chamber -- a filibuster proof majority. (Sidenote: Today is the 226th day since the Nov. 4, 2008 election that failed to produce a winner in Minnesota!)

Click It!: The Atlantic unveils its list of the 30 best Twitterers in Washington. And, the Fix made it!

Thune Rises: John Thune's quick move to fill the vacancy as Senate Republican Policy Committee Chairman caused by the sex scandal of John Ensign (Nev.) is the latest piece of evidence that the South Dakota Senator is positioning himself as a national voice within the GOP. Thune's candidacy immediately forced Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) to re-consider his candidacy for the fourth ranking job in leadership -- evidence of how highly the South Dakota Senator is regarded by his colleagues. Back home, Thune has put together a stellar team in advance of his reelection in 2010 -- led by Justin Brasell, who led Sen. Mitch McConnell's campaign in 2008 -- despite the fact that no serious Democrat seems likely to run. And, Thune ended March with nearly $4.4 million in his Senate account, a significant sum that could be used for any sort of federal race (cough, president, cough) down the line. Whether it's 2012 or 2016, Thune will be on a national ticket for Republicans sometime soon. Keep an eye on him.

ICYMI....Health Care: With the move to reform health care off to a halting start on Capitol Hill, it's worth spending an hour poring over the plan submitted by three former Senate Majority Leaders -- Howard Baker (R-Tenn.), Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) and Bob Dole (R-Kan.) -- on behalf of the Bipartisan Policy Center. The plan is the "culmination of an inclusive year-and-a-half effort that included strategic outreach to key health care stakeholders, a series of state-based public policy forums, and months of personal deliberations by the Leaders," according to the BPC website.

Say What?: "I see the ACORN logo when I look at the President Obama." -- Iowa Rep. Steve King (R) during an interview Wednesday on Fox News Channel.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 18, 2009; 5:25 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Next: Bush Takes on Obama

Comments

I think a major factor in the donation slowdown is caused by President Obama slowly showing himself for who he really is. I don't think even the far left realized just how extreme he is and they aren't sure what do do at this point. Read how a president is really supposed to act in The GH-4 Effect at Strategic Book Publishing.

Posted by: snydersweb | June 19, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

I'm so far left that I call myself a libertarian socialist (anyone want to join my new party?). I got so sick of the venomous spam coming out of the DSCC (to whom I NEVER gave my e-mail) that I simply spam listed them. Through the presidential campaign, you could track contributions based on negativity of message.

GET A CLUE you bozos! Until you swallow the bile and actually demonstrate some ideas and some courage, my wallet is sealed!

Posted by: fr3dmars | June 18, 2009 6:33 PM | Report abuse

AMERICA’S NATIONAL HEALTHCARE EMERGENCY!

It’s official. America and the World are now in a GLOBAL PANDEMIC. A World EPIDEMIC with potential catastrophic consequences for ALL of the American people. The first PANDEMIC in 41 years. And WE THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES will have to face this PANDEMIC with the 37th worst quality of healthcare in the developed World.

STAND READY AMERICA TO SEIZE CONTROL OF YOUR NATIONAL HEALTHCARE SYSTEM.

We spend over twice as much of our GDP on healthcare as any other country in the World. And Individual American spend about ten times as much out of pocket on healthcare as any other people in the World. All because of GREED! And the PRIVATE FOR PROFIT healthcare system in America.

And while all this is going on, some members of congress seem mostly concern about how to protect the corporate PROFITS! of our GREED DRIVEN, PRIVATE FOR PROFIT NATIONAL DISGRACE. A PRIVATE FOR PROFIT DISGRACE that is in fact, totally valueless to the public health. And a detriment to national security, public safety, and the public health.

Progressive democrats and others should stand firm in their demand for a robust public option for all Americans, with all of the minimum requirements progressive democrats demanded. If congress can not pass a robust public option with at least 51 votes and all robust minimum requirements, congress should immediately move to scrap healthcare reform and demand that President Obama declare a state of NATIONAL HEALTHCARE EMERGENCY! Seizing and replacing all PRIVATE FOR PROFIT health insurance plans with the immediate implementation of National Healthcare for all Americans under the provisions of HR676 (A Single-payer National Healthcare Plan For All).

Coverage can begin immediately through our current medicare system. With immediate expansion through recruitment of displaced workers from the canceled private sector insurance industry. Funding can also begin immediately by substitution of payroll deductions for private insurance plans with payroll deductions for the national healthcare plan. This is what the vast majority of the American people want. And this is what all objective experts unanimously agree would be the best, and most cost effective for the American people and our economy.

In Mexico on average people who received medical care for A-H1N1 (Swine Flu) with in 3 days survived. People who did not receive medical care until 7 days or more died. This has been the same results in the US. But 50 million Americans don’t even have any healthcare coverage. And at least 200 million of you with insurance could not get in to see your private insurance plans doctors in 2 or 3 days, even if your life depended on it. WHICH IT DOES!

Contact congress and your representatives NOW! AND SPREAD THE WORD!

God Bless You

Jacksmith – WORKING CLASS

Posted by: JackSmith1 | June 18, 2009 6:17 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
While bsimon1 likes to ignore the 2008 Minnesota election law, which requires a physical manual hand count, and argues for counting Phantom ballots, at the same time the three (3) judge panel ignored 4,900 legitimate voters' ballots and equated them to felon scum ballots while counting 133 Phantom ballots in Franken's favor in violation to THE LAW.

Joe Friedberg, of the Coleman legal team, cornered the three (3) judge panel in a number of areas including the 133 Phantom ballots of which Friedberg spent about 11 minutes addressing at the commencement of his argument.

For the reader, Minnesota Public Radio has an audio of Friedberg's closing argument under "AUDIO" to the right of the page:
http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2009/03/13/recount_closing/

The erroneously accepted 133 Phantom ballots must be removed. To maintain the 133 Phantom ballots, in the count, is a violation of due process rights of Minnesota voters.

U.S. law requires that all ballots are either accepted or rejected on the same principles, rules, and standards.

Even if 4,900 legitimate voters are disenfranchised, bsimon1 & the Franken legal team apparently would prefer disenfranchising them and counting the Phantom ballots in violation to THE LAW.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

CC writes:

"3. John Edwards explains."

No, he does not. The article closes with the broken promises he made in N.O. to begin his campaign.

Unless you have way too much time on your hands [I was on endless "hold"; what's your excuse?] you should skip this link and never apologize.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

While kwoods2 likes to refer to 'phantom' ballots, the Coleman legal team admitted, in the election contest trial, that those ballots did, indeed, exist on election day. The judges chose to use the machine tally despite the physical ballots being misplaced, apparently in an effort to keep from disenfranchising voters who had cast legal, valid ballots.

http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2009/04/13/8043/judges%E2%80%99_%E2%80%98three_votes%E2%80%99_give_al_franken_convincing_win_in_senate_recount_trial

"• Coleman’s lawyers questioned the validity of 132 missing Minneapolis ballots. During the trial, Coleman attorney Joe Friedberg acknowledged the ballots once existed and then went missing. Until today, the judges hadn’t ruled on this.

In Monday’s ruling, the judges declared the 132 ballots “were cast and properly counted on Election Day.” As the State Canvassing Board ruled before them, those votes were included in the final count, giving Franken a net of 46 votes over Coleman."


Even if those voters were disenfranchised, as kwoods2 & the Coleman legal team apparently would prefer, the former Senator would still be short by 260-odd votes, and would remain an ex-senator.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Well, I am going to offer another reason why the fundraising issue is being upped by Republicans: John Cornyn! He is now the top fundraiser for the National Republican Senatorial Committee. In 2008, a year which Cornyn himself was up for relection, he donated over $1 million dollars to the NRSC pact. The man can flat raise funds! Also, Nancy Pelosi's battle against the CIA without offering any proof she's been lied to may not set well with voters. I give democrats this, Chuck Shumer can recruit candidates & raise funds...he's super at it!

Posted by: reason5 | June 18, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
No, Reichert's statement is really of no importance except to show that it's likely the ballots never existed, but that issue is not really that important.

The 2008 Minnesota election law requires a physical manual hand count of all ballots being placed into the official hand count tally for the purpose to determine voter intent which you have ignored and which the state courts have ignored to this day.

Machine tallies cannot derive voter intent or else Coleman won the election.

Again, the reason the law requires a physical manual hand count is for two (2) reasons:

1) In case of a close election, such as this one, it ensures the removal of machine count error.
2) It determines voter intent and where a ballot's voter intent cannot be manually determined, it must be rejected.

Therefore, the three (3) judge panel and the Election Canvassing Board both violated Minnesota election law to dilute the physical manual hand count to include ballots that cannot be counted by law nor can they be determined as to voter intent.

The Democratic legislature created that law just last year to ensure voter intent and actual existing ballots could, without question, determine an election winner.

It is a good law, and it's unfortunate that the state officials and courts have refused to comply with the law nor to declare the law unconstitutional, as they know there are no grounds to declare the election law unconstitutional.

You can be inclined to believe that disobeying the law is all right, but it's not, and the federal courts will rule that it is not.

By your post, please provide any showing where the Minnesota law indicates that a machine count can supersede or replace the physical manual hand count requirement.

It is not my intention to convince you either, but I would have thought you would have been convinced by the law.

Advocating to not follow the law is not a "balanced view", and nor can it ever be.
As you show, your Mr. Black provided no answers, no wisdom, nothing of value only "unlawful Al" tripe.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Has anybody asked, "where is the motivation to donate?" There is no Republican boogeyman to defeat. They may feel like the war is won; it's time to put down the checkbook and go back to the mansion.

Posted by: caribis | June 18, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"First of all, you did not answer how you see the words as critical, and neither do I because it is obvious they are not."

I thought the words were critical because they reinforce the point that people make mistakes. Your allegations regarding the ballots you call 'phantoms' hinge on one of Ms Reicherts statements being accurate, and ignoring that she may have made a mistake or misspoke. Do you think she should be allowed to correct the record if she makes an error? I'm inclined to think the canvassing board & three judge panel analyzed the evidence and properly applied the law. I'm also inclined to think the MN supreme court will correct any errors made by those groups, should there be any. Lastly, I think you misrepresent the MN election law regarding the missing ballots, and that, in fact, the judges made a proper ruling in allowing the machine count in favor of a hand recount. You may not want to believe that, which is fine; it is not my intention to try to convince you. Rather, if I respond to any subsequent posts of yours, my intention is to present a balanced view to others who might be reading this material, as what you present is not. Take care-

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
First of all, you did not answer how you see the words as critical, and neither do I because it is obvious they are not.

Second, I am glad to see that you suggest Reichert changed her position (after the Deputy Secretary of State - a Dem. spent a couple days with her) in which she was "confident" that the ballots never existed.

Third, Following the 2008 Minnesota election law, created by the Democrats, is "grasping at straws" and "sour grapes"?
I am not selectively referencing anything. The Phantom ballots were counted in violation to Minnesota law, and if the Minnesota Supreme Court allows the violations of law to continue, it is a de novo review.

I agree that questioning the integrity of the courts will do little, but questioning the court's unlawful rulings will.

Don't you think for a court to violate the law is bad practice?

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
No mention, by Mr. Black, of the Phantom ballots which were counted in violation to the Democrats 2008 Minnesota election law which requires a physical manual hand count to determine voter intent.

There is nothing funny about counting Phantom ballots, or in the words of Brian Walsh, a spokesman for U.S. Senator Cornyn, a former judge, and the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, issued a statement in support of Coleman: "The NRSC has and will continue to support Norm Coleman's efforts to ensure that thousands of Minnesotans are not disenfranchised, that ballots exist before they are counted, and that every legitimate vote that was cast is counted once in Minnesota."
(Article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune)

Cornyn is also correct that the Federal Courts and the U.S. Constitution would not allow a violation of civil rights to be perpetrated without due process which takes it out of the Minnesota political hands altogether, Republican and Democrat.

I see Black neglected to mention that the biased three (3) judge panel was selected by Democrat Alan Page, Mr. disenfranchisement himself.

Furthermore, if the Minnesota Supreme Court ignores Coleman's Constitutional rights, as Black suggests they might, since Coleman's attorneys have pled his civil rights in the state cases, his civil rights are automatically reviewable in federal court.

It is very likely the U.S. Supreme Court will hear this case.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

"1) Thank you for showing that you were being disingenuous with your June 12th posting as you did know what Cindy Reichert stated to the news, which in my opinion, using federal case law, her statement is "admissible summary judgment evidence". "

kwoods2, I'm not sure what you're accusing me of. You quoted the pioneer press but failed to provide a link; I wanted to see the source material & looked it up myself. Lo and behold, your excerpt excluded some critical words.

Regarding the inclusion of newspaper articles as evidence in summary judgement hearing, I fail to see the relevance here. Regarding the statements made by Ms Reichert, I suspect the courts are more interested in her testimony before the canvassing board and/or 3 judge panel than they are in whatever she said to a newspaper. In short, I think you're grasping at straws, selectively referencing the record of the election & subsequent challenges in a fashion that is going to lead you to further disappointment in the outcome. Your posts, as far as I've seen and can recollect, amount to little more than sour grapes and unsupported claims of partisanship on the part of the judges reviewing the case. Questioning the integrity of the courts is not going to produce the result you seek.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
1) Thank you for showing that you were being disingenuous with your June 12th posting as you did know what Cindy Reichert stated to the news, which in my opinion, using federal case law, her statement is "admissible summary judgment evidence".

2) No, I do not believe that Reichert's statement on human errors makes any difference whatsoever. How do you see that it does?

3) It was wise on Coleman's team's behalf to not support the wrongful Friday the 13th (black Friday) ruling, by the three judge panel, because he would have destroyed his case, in federal court and for appeal in state court, to adhere to what is clearly an erroneous evidentiary court decision.

I think Mr. Black knows that as well and as is being disingenuous. I have not, however, read, his article, but thanks for the link as I will read it, and I will see whether or not he addressed the Phantom ballots as well which the Phantom ballot issue will bring federal de novo review.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

KOZ - VDH's bylined op at RCP:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/06/18/obamaworld_97044.html

is biting and critical of BHO as one would expect, but it is also amusing in its use of examples and is more complete than your unattributed quotes from it. I do think Ds should step back and take a look at the Prez through Hansen's filter just to get a feel for what dissonance sounds like to someone not of a like mind.
--------------------------------------------------
Kinsley has a fair [IMO] criticism of Sotomayor that does not impugn her ethnicity or her judicial qualifications and should not keep her from being consented to by the Senate. But it is worth a look.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/06/17/AR2009061702801.html?sub=AR

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

They should have kept Howard Dean and not betrayed their liberal allies.

Posted by: norriehoyt | June 18, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I guess all those overseas illegal contributions from N Korea and Gaza have dried up.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 18, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Terrorism. Acts of terror disappeared about six months ago. Thankfully, we live now in an age where there will be - in the new vocabulary of the Obama administration - only occasional "overseas contingency operations" in which we may be forced to hold a few "detainees." At the same time, ongoing military tribunals, renditions, wiretaps, phone intercepts and predator-drone assassinations are no longer threats to the Constitution. And just saying you're going to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay is proof that it is almost closed.

Iraq. The once-despised Iraq war thankfully ended around Jan. 20, 2009, and has now transformed into a noble experiment that is fanning winds of change throughout the Middle East. There will be no need for any more Hollywood cinema exposés of American wartime crimes in Iraq with titles like "Rendition," "Redacted," "Lions for Lambs" and "Stop-Loss."


The West. Western values and history aren't apparently that special or unique. As President Obama told the world during his recent speech in Cairo, the Renaissance and Enlightenment were, in fact, fueled by a brilliant Islamic culture, responsible for landmark discoveries in mathematics, science and medicine. Slavery in America ended without violence. Mistreatment of women and religious intolerance in the Middle East have comparable parallels in America.


Once we remember and accept the logic of the above, then almost everything about this Age of Obama begins to make perfect sense.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 18, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Terrorism. Acts of terror disappeared about six months ago. Thankfully, we live now in an age where there will be - in the new vocabulary of the Obama administration - only occasional "overseas contingency operations" in which we may be forced to hold a few "detainees." At the same time, ongoing military tribunals, renditions, wiretaps, phone intercepts and predator-drone assassinations are no longer threats to the Constitution. And just saying you're going to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay is proof that it is almost closed.

Iraq. The once-despised Iraq war thankfully ended around Jan. 20, 2009, and has now transformed into a noble experiment that is fanning winds of change throughout the Middle East. There will be no need for any more Hollywood cinema exposés of American wartime crimes in Iraq with titles like "Rendition," "Redacted," "Lions for Lambs" and "Stop-Loss."


The West. Western values and history aren't apparently that special or unique. As President Obama told the world during his recent speech in Cairo, the Renaissance and Enlightenment were, in fact, fueled by a brilliant Islamic culture, responsible for landmark discoveries in mathematics, science and medicine. Slavery in America ended without violence. Mistreatment of women and religious intolerance in the Middle East have comparable parallels in America.


Once we remember and accept the logic of the above, then almost everything about this Age of Obama begins to make perfect sense.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 18, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

1. The Budget. Wanting to cut $17 billion from the budget, as President Obama has promised, is proof of financial responsibility. Borrowing $1.84 trillion this year for new programs is "stimulus." The old phrase "out-of-control spending" is inoperative.

2. Unemployment. The number of jobs theoretically saved, or created, by new government policies - not the actual percentage of Americans out of work, or the total number of jobs lost - is now the far better indicator of unemployment.

3. The Private Sector. Nationalizing much of the auto and financial industries, while regulating executive compensation, is an indication of our new government's repeatedly stated reluctance to interfere in the private sector.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 18, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I sent a contribution to the DNC after the election and I would request a refund if I could.

Neither the Democratic party nor my elected representatives will get one more dime from me unless/until they stand up and say that the current discussions about healthcare are completely off track.

I will not donate anything to anyone seeks to buy "bipartisan" compromise with platitudes about the "46 million uninsured". Any "reform" that keeps the profit-making insurance companies at the center of our national health policy is no reform at all.

There will be no more contributions from me until we have a plan that lets any US citizen to opt into some sort of single-payer, government sponsored program.

Posted by: Athena_news | June 18, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

The tax man cometh!

Ya think?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 18, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

kwoods2, I don't know what kind of face you're making as you type, but Eric Black sums up Coleman's prospects nicely in this "MN Supremes ruling preview" post today:

"No matter how much some Republs may want to believe that they've been robbed by Dems, it's getting harder and harder to make that case with a straight face."

http://www.minnpost.com/ericblack/2009/06/18/9608/advance_checklist_for_the_mn_supremes_franken-coleman_ruling

Here's another interesting comment from Mr Black:
"One question that will dog Team Coleman in the post-case analysis will be: why didn't they prove the basic elements of acceptability for more ballots, even after the ThreeJudgePanel told them that they would consider the ballots one-by-one, and would count only ballots for which they had proof that all of the requirements had been fulfilled."


Lastly, I can't help but notice that you truncated the Pioneer Press excerpt, which should end thusly:

"“We believe that we have all the ballot envelopes here,” Reichert said. “There are human errors that are made on election day.”"

That last piece of Ms. Reichert's statement is critical to understanding her point, wouldn't you agree?

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

THE NEXUS BETWEEN OBAMA POLICY VACILLATIONS AND FUND-RAISING WOES AT THE DNC...

...the unexplored angle in today's "Fix."

***

"When you see the abuse of power, you've got to speak."

-- VP candidate Joseph Biden, Aug. 27, 2008, Democratic National Convention


***


Bush-Cheney human and civil rights abuses continue...


THE EXTRAJUDICIAL PUNISHMENT NETWORK:

AN IDEOLOGICALLY-DRIVEN SOCIAL PURGE THAT VIOLATES THE HUMAN AND CIVIL RIGHTS OF INNOCENT BUT 'TARGETED' U.S. CITIZENS...

ON THE STREETS OF NYC, DC, PHILLY, BOSTON...

...AND IN CITIES AND TOWNS ACROSS AMERICA.

And federal citizen volunteer programs fund the "community gang stalkers" who are terrorizing their neighbors as police look the other way...

...harassing, vandalizing, destroying their livelihoods as their health is degraded by widely-deployed microwave radiation ("directed energy") weapons -- the long-anticipated (and feared) weaponization of the electromagnetic spectrum.

And Congress and the mainstream media are largely unaware.

A parallel array of federal "programs of personal financial destruction" slowly decimate the family finances of "target" families -- surely a factor in the mortgage meltdown that precipitated the global financial crisis.

And Congress and the mainstream media are largely unaware.

When victims complain, they are told there is "nothing to investigate."

True -- because federal and local authorities KNOW ALL ABOUT IT.

Will Congress, the national press corps, and Team Obama wake up and realize that democracy and human rights are being stolen at the GRASSROOTS?


http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if links are corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener


Posted by: scrivener50 | June 18, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Where is the outrage and demonstrations from Minnesotans over the fact that they haven't had a senator for 226 days during what both parties acknowledge is a critical time in American history?

Posted by: jrosco3 | June 18, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

A rather glaring omission from your report on Democratic fundraising is the fact that President Obama does not allow lobbyist donations. So, as usual, the Republicans are bought and paid for by special interests while the Dems represent We The People.

Try a little less bias Cillizza. Might help your credibility.

Posted by: bamccampbell | June 18, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

I think it's just donor fatigue.

Posted by: nodebris | June 18, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

This is what happens when you try to be a "moderate" and sell out all the people who helped BHO.

And, giving my $$$ away to a bunch of crooked bankers closed my wallet in a big hurry.

Posted by: torro67 | June 18, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Fundraising problem? Dems have an Obama problem. 5 months into his administration, Obama has proven himself to be a ideologue who knows nothing about the real economy, but understands "community organizing" all too well. 1+ year from now, you will find out Dems have more than just fundraising problems.

Posted by: pgr88 | June 18, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

"I used to see the KBR Halliburton logo when I looked at President Bush or VP Cheney."

http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=4489783


Posted by: MerrillFrank | June 18, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

"Simply google ACORN or ACORN VOTER FRAUD and you will find plenty of sources, not just Fox News"

What you will find is reams of right-wing commentary freaking out about nothing.

Sort of like if you google "Obama Birth Certificate."

"Plenty of Sources" != true

Posted by: nodebris | June 18, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

"VT DUFFMAN/Drindl: It's easy to check if you want. Simply google ACORN or ACORN VOTER FRAUD and you will find plenty of sources, not just Fox News."

This is a cop-out. I thought we were going or "civil discourse" on the fix these days?

You made a very specific claim of "systemic voter fraud," you out to be able to support it. I'm not going to do your homework for you, cowboy up and back up your assertion with some facts. If anything do it in the interest of intelelctual honesty.

The only thing I ever heard of were situations where volunteers were turning in registrations with fake names, and the only reason that registration officials knew was because ACORN's due dilligence marked all of the suspected fake registrations as such, while turning them in as they are required to do by law.

This, however, is a far cry from "systemic voter fraud." In the interests of civil discourse and intellectual hoensty, please back up your allegations with facts.

Personally, I take accusations of voter fraud seriously and would honestly love to take a look at any links you have.

Posted by: VTDuffman | June 18, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

"And you will find what mark_in_austin described: people paid per name by acorn who either deliberately falsify names in order to boost their own paycheck, or who don't verify the info of the individuals filling out the forms. Critics of acorn describe this as 'voter fraud' despite no fraudulent votes actually being cast."

Not only that, its illegal to throw out suspicious looking forms. Only the registrar can do that. A registration for Donald Duck is problematic only if someone arrives at the poll with webbed feet, a blue shirt, and no pants.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

bsimon1,
Sorry for not getting back to you since June 12th, nevertheless, here is my response to your post (which concerns the Phantom ballots):

"Minneapolis elections director Cindy Reichert said she believes the error occurred when election judges at the precinct on election night mistakenly ran ballots with write-in candidates through a counting machine twice. There were 129 such ballots. Reichert said although the numbers do not match exactly, she is confident that that's what happened and will report those numbers to the Secretary of State's Office. She also detailed a search for any potential missing envelopes that contain ballots, including opening the counting machine, talking to election judges and calling the church where the polling place was located. 'We believe that we have all the ballot envelopes here,' Reichert said." - Pioneer Press (updated 12/04/2008).

IMO, What Cindy stated to the news, as was printed in an article by this paper, can be used in federal court as:

"Newspaper articles were admissible summary judgment evidence, even though reporters were not deposed and their affidavits were not provided to court, since one article was introduced merely to show that it was published, and the other article was statement made by party's agent or servant concerning matter within scope or employment, made during existence of that relationship." D.L. v. Unified School Dist. # 497, D. Kan. 2002, 270 F.Supp.2d 1217, amended 2002 WL 31296445, modified on reconsideration 2002 WL 31253740.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

on the first page of the google search of "Acorn voter fraud," I think there was exactly ONE actual news account. The rest were columnists and bloggers.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

"Simply google ACORN or ACORN VOTER FRAUD and you will find plenty of sources, not just Fox News."


And you will find what mark_in_austin described: people paid per name by acorn who either deliberately falsify names in order to boost their own paycheck, or who don't verify the info of the individuals filling out the forms. Critics of acorn describe this as 'voter fraud' despite no fraudulent votes actually being cast.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin writes
"I am only comparing this plan to what I consider to be the dreadful Kennedy Plan."

Put that way I'll agree its a step in the right direction, but I think we need larger steps.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 10:40 AM | Report abuse

VT DUFFMAN/Drindl: It's easy to check if you want. Simply google ACORN or ACORN VOTER FRAUD and you will find plenty of sources, not just Fox News.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 18, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Oh, I guess Chris already announced his making the list

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

The Atlantic Online - top 30 Washington insiders to follow on twitter. Chris Cillizza is #3.

(albeit, the list is in alphabetical order)

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/print/200906u/twitter-feeds

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Like bsimon, I want to scrap employer centered insurance entirely. So to be clear, I am only comparing this plan to what I consider to be the dreadful Kennedy Plan.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Coleman, good for you for your appeal of this wrongful setback which can easily be transformed into a win.

Posted by: kwoods2 | June 18, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Andy and drindl, it does seem like a politically feasible plan if Congress won't strip the revenue increases out of it like it has every other proposal to raise revenue.
Thanks for that input.

I am trying to process how it can effectively deal with the major cost-of-delivery and duplication-defensive medicine and nutrition-obesity and negligence-fixing what negligence caused issues that are current $$$ wasters. Do not have time to read it now.

vbhoomes, in NV, I think, paid acorn contractors signed up the Dallas Cowboys to vote. The fraud was actually on Acorn, since the so-called voters did not exist and would not turn up at the polls. the contractors just forged names to get paid "by the name". I do not think well of Acorn because it ain't no League of Women Voters. Shotgun voter registration drives worked by the otherwise unemployed are going to get too many results like NV, inevitably. But it does not actually raise the specter of voter fraud because no one who doesn't exist will turn up at the polls, right? Or was there another incident with more likelihood of actual voter fraud?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"" by taxing coverage that is over and above what members of congress get"

Congress fabulous coverage so anyone who has better than that should be taxed -- it's BETTER than cash income."


That may be the case, but it doesn't seem like a very reliable source of funding. Nor does the prospect of taxing large companies who don't offer health plans for their employees. Point being taxes influence behavior: raise a tax and people take action to avoid it - so taxing uber-coverage health care plans might incent those people to change the plan to avoid the tax. Tax companies that don't offer a plan, and their potential workaround is to offer a plan that nobody takes advantage of - more importantly, what business is it of the gov'ts to mandate that employers provide health coverage? We need a healthcare delivery system that is not connected to employment, or one's employer - this proposal seems to go in the opposite direction.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 18, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

" by taxing coverage that is over and above what members of congress get"

Congress fabulous coverage so anyone who has better than that should be taxed -- it's BETTER than cash income.

Posted by: drindl | June 18, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Mark,
I heard a story on NPR this morning about the Dole/Baker/Daschle plan and I wouldn't be suprised if it ends up being very similar to the bill that is passed. According to the report it would also pay for itself by taxing coverage that is over and above what members of congress get. It is also very close to the version that they are floating in one of the committees in the senate (finance I think) so I think it may have legs.
All in all I think any plan that we get will not be perfect, but this one sounds pretty good to me, although it will probably mean that my taxes go up some since I have great coverage, but that is ok with me if it means that we can have most of the 45 million people who are uninsured covered.

Posted by: AndyR3 | June 18, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

"This is an absolute fantasy, bhoomes. It's code for helping poor black people vote. Show me cites, legal cite, reputable news sources [NOT FOX] with links proving that this is something more than another unhinged tinfoil hat conspiracy."

Yeah, definitely. It was completely bizarre to see McCain cite ACORN as the biggest perpetrators of voter fraud in the history of the country. I'd have to say the lower class Florida districts that were kept from voting in 2000 is a far greater example of voter fraud.

Those types of examples are the ONLY examples of voter fraud in the history of the US. It's never about people voting multiple times. The risk versus reward is too great. Voter fraud is always manifested in people being prevented from voting.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Forget democratic donor fatigue, I'm suffering from democratic mail/e-mail fatigue and on the verge of unsubscribing.

Posted by: SW-DCWaterfront | June 18, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

I'm sure that a lot of the small donors have been disproportionately affected by the economic downturn than the big time donors that typically donate Republican.

And I need someone to explain to me what picketing banks has to do with voter fraud. I just can't seem to figure it out.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 18, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Not only dumb as a rock but a racist to boot.


'Rusty DePass, a prominent South Carolina Republican activist and former state elections director, has now made an abject apology for having joked on his Facebook page that an escaped gorilla from a local zoo was an ancestor of First Lady Michelle Obama.

"I am truly sorry for any offense I have caused," DePass said at a press conference -- held at the offices of the South Carolina NAACP, no less. "My remark was clearly inappropriate and I apologize for writing it."

DePass had previously sort-of apologized for it -- but also said that Michelle had originated the comment by believing in evolution. "

Posted by: drindl | June 18, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

This is an absolute fantasy, bhoomes. It's code for helping poor black people vote. Show me cites, legal cite, reputable news sources [NOT FOX] with links proving that this is something more than another unhinged tinfoil hat conspiracy.

Posted by: drindl | June 18, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

"Systemic voter fraud Drindl, throughout the Country,"

Systemic voter fraud? I would love to see a source for this. Please cite examples of "systemic voter fraud."

Posted by: VTDuffman | June 18, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Systemic voter fraud Drindl, throughout the Country, indictments in Nevada. Threatening banks with lawsuits and picketing if they didn't make loans to minorities even though applicants didn't meet the standards for Loans(See subprime recession)All this is well documented in newspapers and TV. I guess you would have to remove your partisan lens to catch it or conciously just ignore what doesn't fit into your idealogy.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 18, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Can't get blood from a stone. With the Democrats promising to tax us all into oblivion, who has the liquid reserves let alone impetus to give them more money voluntarily? The way Obama is running the economy into the ground and ramping up unemployment, I hope the Democrats have found a way to accept the shirts off our backs as contributions.

Posted by: zippyspeed | June 18, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Following up on my earlier post, I have now read the Summary. I think it correctly states the major problems but the Summary does not have enough detail to allow for any discussion of the proposal. There is more in Broder's column about the proposal than there is in the Summary.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Just exactly what it is that acorn is supposed to have done, bhoomes? Please detail and provide links of actual incidents, not accusations.

Posted by: drindl | June 18, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Drindl I think it was the tactics of ACORN that concerned and disturbed people and then their is the question of why should they get tax dollars when they are such a political organization? But the economy will determine the midterm elctions, democrats will not be able to get away with blaming Republicans when they have controlled Congress the last 4 years and the WH for the last 2. If unemployment is stll around 10% next year, you can kiss your donkey congress in the butt,they are gone.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 18, 2009 8:56 AM | Report abuse


The money will be back when it's time. All we will need to terrify people into donating to Democrats will be to run a series of ads featuring stupefying dumb quotes from Republicans. Just the kind of crazy-as* loony stuff they say every day, like:

"I see the ACORN logo when I look at the President Obama." -- Iowa Rep. Steve King (R) during an interview Wednesday on Fox News Channel."

Any party that can create a demon out of an organization that tries to help people hang on to their homes is far too crazy to be allowed to run this country. Or to ruin this country, as they already have financially.

Posted by: drindl | June 18, 2009 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Yes, couple of todays bloggers has hit it on the head, the Gay & Lesbian community is extremely unhappy that Pres Obama hasn't pushed to do away with "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and having his solictor general defend the "The Defense of Marriage Act". I am conservative, but I believe in Freedom of Individuals. Gay marriage doesn't harm anybody, "Live and Let Live" My only caveat is the issue needs to be decided in the political process and not the judicial process. If Gays and Lesbians can be a little bit more patient, they can win in the political process.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 18, 2009 8:39 AM | Report abuse

CC wrote:

"it's worth spending an hour poring over the plan submitted by three former Senate Majority Leaders -- Howard Baker (R-Tenn.), Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) and Bob Dole (R-Kan.) -- on behalf of the Bipartisan Policy Center."

The link at the word "plan" is to the Center's web site where one can download the full report [66pp.] and a 9pp summary.

I will have time to read the summary during the day. Considering the source of this proposal, I do think it will be worth downloading for any of us interested in this matter - especially if it is thought that the Kennedy proposal is wrong-headed and poorly thought out for unintended consequences. This group is capable of better than that so I hope to read something I can support.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 18, 2009 8:27 AM | Report abuse

I also want to point out that the RNC's totals for this year include something like 3 million or so that were tranfered from the McCain election fund. In the case of the Dems that money got transfered to the Obama reelection campaign. The real totals are how much money does the DNC have on hand. Also I want to point out that Howard Dean set-up the DNC to be able to run on less money by investing into grassroots and state parties, which according to everything I have read are killing their GOP counterparts in most states.

Also from a personal side, I am not donating any money to the DNC after the way that Rahm Emmanuel and his DC consultants ignored all of Governer Dean's vision for our party which led to the huge gains we have in Washington right now. My donations will go to Democracy for America for now since I trust Howard Dean alot more then I do Tim Kaine to push a progressive agenda.

Posted by: AndyR3 | June 18, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

I have gay family members and friends, and I have suspended donations to the Democrats, who turn out to be just as big a bunch of homophobic morons as their GOP counterparts. On this issue, as on so many others, they roll over for the Republicans, just as they always have and always will.

Posted by: nicekid | June 18, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse

Democrats problems got even bigger yesterday with the President's insulting bone toss to the Gay and Lesbian community. The LBGT community needs to stop all donations until this administration and this Congress take meaningful steps to grant equal rights to ALL Americans.

Posted by: dem4life1 | June 18, 2009 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Re: Democrats and fundraising - I think some of it is that the sense of urgency is gone. I think for some small donors like me (I donated $100 or so in the primaries, a couple hundred to Obama in the general, and $50-100 to my Senate/House/etc. candidates), we did what we could - or more than we really could - last year, and now we're recovering. There's no imminent election and, perhaps more importantly, we're not getting desperate e-mails every day reminding us of the consequences of not donating. I think the DNC/DSCC/DCCC should be sending out e-mails explaining why exactly they need money RIGHT NOW. I believe that they do; I just think that it's less visible and self-evident to most people, and we need reminders.

Posted by: KatherineWelsh | June 18, 2009 7:34 AM | Report abuse

I would guess that the democrats aren't raising the Bucks because Obama has turned out to be another Bush.
Would the "end war now" people continue to donate?

Would the Gays donate ?

Would those who want corporations donate?

why on earth would they give to a man who's main difference with Bush is that he is better spoken?

Posted by: newagent99 | June 18, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

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