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Billionaire Jeff Greene considering candidacy in Florida Senate

1. Billionaire real estate developer and financier Jeff Greene is mulling whether to enter the Democratic Senate primary in Florida, according to a senior Democratic source, the latest twist in a race that has resembled nothing so much as a soap opera in recent weeks.

Greene, who became a billionaire over the past few years by pioneering credit default swaps, had been considering whether or not to run as an independent for Senate but with Gov. Charlie Crist (R) seemingly moving toward an independent run of his own Greene is apparently now weighing the idea of challenging Rep. Kendrick Meek for the Democratic nod.

Greene's massive personal wealth makes him a force to be reckoned with if he decides to run -- particularly in a state as large (and expensive in which to run) as Florida. According to one well-place source, Greene is reportedly soliciting advice -- on an informal basis -- from Democratic consultants Doug Schoen, Joe Trippi and Paul Blank. Neither Schoen nor Trippi returned emails seeking comment on a Greene candidacy or their involvement.

While Greene's wealth would make him viable, his past would seem to make him a ripe target for political opponents. In a profile of Greene written by Forbes magazine when he became one of the 400 richest people in the world (net worth: $1.5 billion), it's revealed that former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson was the best man at Greene's wedding, former madam Heidi Fleiss lived with Greene for a year after getting out of jail, and he engaged in an extended legal fight with director Ron Howard.

National Democrats have acknowledged privately that Meek, while running a credible campaign, is still not likely to have the financial lift to put the state in play in the fall. The Crist vacillation about an independent bid coupled with former state House Speaker Marco Rubio's ongoing problems with his use of a state party credit card during his time as speaker has brightened Democratic prospects in the state, however.

If it happens, a Greene candidacy would provide further drama -- and unpredictability -- in a race that is already shaping up to be one of the best (and certainly most entertaining) of the 2010 cycle.

2. Former Colorado lieutenant governor Jane Norton (R) has shuffled the senior staff of her Senate campaign, bringing in state senator -- and one-time 2010 gubernatorial candidate -- Josh Penry to run her effort.

Penry, who is widely regarded as a rising star within Colorado Republican politics, replaces Norm Cummings in the top job. Rich Beeson, a longtime national Republican operative who is from Colorado, will join the Norton campaign as a general consultant.

"Jane's ready to go on offense, and I'm eager to help her," Penry said in an e-mail exchange with the Fix. "Jane's going to Washington to pick a fight with Harry Reid over the direction of our country."

Norton's decision to remove her campaign manager and install Penry speaks to the unexpectedly difficult time she has had in consolidating support in advance of the state's Aug. 10 primary. Norton was edged out by Weld County prosecutor Ken Buck in last month's statewide caucuses and pulled out of the state convention last week -- evidence, her detractors suggest, that she realized she simply couldn't beat Buck in that format.

Norton was recruited into the race by national party strategists and has long been seen as the preferred candidate of the national GOP. But, Buck has been building support among conservative activists and won the endorsement of South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint (R) last week.

Democrats have a primary of their own as appointed Sen. Michael Bennet and former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff are set to face off on Aug. 10.

3. Former state senator Cal Cunningham, national Democrats' preferred nominee against Sen. Richard Burr (R) this fall, raised just $345,000 in his first three months of active campaigning -- a sum that raises questions about his ability to win the May 4 primary.

"In a multi-candidate primary, the candidate with the momentum in the last weeks almost always emerges on top," argued Cunningham campaign manager Rick Fromberg in a memo sent to reporters Wednesday night.

Cunningham will face off against Secretary of State Elaine Marshall and attorney Ken Lewis among others in next month's primary. Polling suggests that Marshall is the favorite in that race thanks to name identification built up over her 14 years in her current post.

Neither Marshall nor Lewis have starred in the race for campaign cash either, however. Marshall brought in just $163,000 from Jan. 1 to March 31 while Lewis raised just $109,000. Burr, by contrast, raked in $1.57 million in the year's first fundraising quarter.

"When you are in a three-way Democratic primary with a female statewide office holder and an African American it makes it difficult to raise money no matter how good you are," said one Cunningham adviser.

The goal of Cunningham's campaign appears to be to keep Marshall under the 40 percent threshold she would need to avoid a June 22 runoff. To that end, he has been running ads aimed at introducing himself to Tarheel State Democrats; one ad touts Cunningham's military service while another hammers Burr for his voting record on jobs.

The two parties disagree vehemently on whether Burr is vulnerable to a Democratic challenge -- from Cunningham or anyone else. Democrats note that Burr's job approval ratings and showing on the ballot test are consistently in the high 30s and low 40s; Republicans retort by pointing out Wednesday's Rasmussen poll that showed Burr beating Cunningham 53 percent to 31 percent.

4. Thanks to the Hotline -- the political tipsheet of campaign politics -- we now have a close-to-comprehensive list of Senate fundraising over the first three months of the year.

You can -- and should -- go over the chart on your own but we plucked out a few stand-outs when it comes to cash left to spend on campaigns.

The top five incumbent war chests -- among those running for re-election this November: 1. New York Sen. Chuck Schumer ($21.8 million on hand) 2. Alabama Sen. Richard Shelby ($16.9 million) 3. Nevada Sen. Harry Reid ($9.4 million) 4. Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter ($9.1 million) 5. California Sen. Barbara Boxer ($8.7 million)

The top five challenger war chests: 1. Rob Portman of Ohio ($7.6 million) 2. Charlie Crist of Florida ($7.5 million) 3. Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania ($5.3 million) 4. Linda McMahon of Connecticut ($4.3 million) 5. Pat Toomey of Pennylvania ($4.1 million)

5. Former Minnesota state House Minority Leader Matt Entenza (D) launched the first ads of the state's open seat governor's race Wednesday touting his status as, wait for it, an outsider to the political system.

"We need new leadership because we can't cut our way back to greatness," says Entenza in the ad. "I'm running for governor because with new leadership we can make Minnesota great again."

The ad, which was jointly produced by Ralston Lapp Media and GMMB, is airing in the Twin Cities and Duluth media markets, which cover roughly 80 percent of the state's voters.

Entenza, who spent more than a decade in the state legislature before running and then dropping out of the state Attorney General's race in 2006, is considered one of a handful of Democrats with a chance at succeeding Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) who is stepping aside to run for president.

Entenza along with former Sen. Mark Dayton (D) are expected to spend considerable sums out of their own pockets to win the Sept. 14 primary. Entenza's wife, Lois Quam, was a health care executive and the family has considerable personal wealth. State House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher and Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak round out the top tier of Democratic candidates in one of the most crowded Democratic field in the country.

The Republican race is similarly jam-packed with five candidates running. Minnesota ranks as the 12th most likely race to switch parties in the fall, according to the latest Fix Friday governor's Line.

By Chris Cillizza  |  April 22, 2010; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Comments

The Democrats can be successful in 2010 - but only if they drop the liberal ideology of the late 20th Century. I am an old liberal who always thought of liberal as meaning open-minded. But it seems a bunch of folks are stuck in old ideas. .......

http://thefiresidepost.com/2010/04/26/the-problem-with-liberals-1965-2010/

Posted by: glclark4750 | April 26, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

1. My intuition is that Greene will not run in this race. Will Crist run as an independent, run for reelection as an independent or Republican? The soap opera will continue until 04/30, which is next Friday. Next Friday this muddled mess will be cleared a bit as that's the filing deadline for federal office. Crist can prolong his venture if he chooses to run for reelection as governor unitl 06/18 on whether he will run as a Republican or as an indepedent. Either way, we will know by next Friday for sure who is running as what and not at all in the Senate race. Mel Martinez likely never imagined there would be such interest in a senate seat he didn't even want anymore.
3. Richard Burr is in great shape for reelection. He has rolled over any minor primary opponents and has about 67% of the vote in a recent primary poll. Burr also leads Cunningham, Marshall or Lewis with around 52% of the vote and is much better financed than any of the 3 potential Democrats. That toppled with the fact that Democrats will very likely have a run off election on 06/22. It will be a close primary on May 02, in 2 Tuesday's. It will likely be Marshall vs. Cunningham, but Lewis is coming on strong in the primary. Burr is at a huge advantage in every way here and is likely to win reelection in November.

4. Specter and Sestek will spend their money before the GE ever begins, and Toomey will begin against a battered and bruised Democrat as the front runner for the Pa. race.

Posted by: reason5 | April 23, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

perhaps you didn t get my sentiments about TeaPartiers. Who cares, they will soon be a small glitch in the history books. They exagerate their importance in our country b/c of the reverance for a 1950s style politican Dick Armey. Apparently you and zouk feel comfortable using ugly names against those you don t agree with not me, I have better things to do with my life.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

leichtman1

Lets hear you complain about the sexual slurs against the Tea Party Movement - otherwise your complaint is nothing more than partisan fodder.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin asks
"re: #5. I had the impression, from a great distance, that the DFL race was between Kelliher and Ryback, now relegated to rounding out the "top tier". How many tiers? How many caniddates? Who is for real?"

The Fix was remiss in not pointing out that Entenza's ad release is timed to distract from this weekend's DFL endorsement convention. Entenza and Dayton have pledged to go to the primary & will not seek the party endorsement, which is to be bestowed this weekend (though the process can come to a draw, as I understand it).

So there's going to be a primary battle eventually. I'll let Doug Grow do the primer on the endorsement process:

http://www.minnpost.com/stories/2010/04/22/17559/political_strategies_and_theories_abound_as_players_and_deciders_get_ready_for_weekend_decision_time

"Kelliher and Rybak go into Saturday's endorsement balloting as the leaders. Both are expected to hit 25 to 30 percent of the vote on the first ballot, far short of the 60 percent needed.

The key target for the others is to hit at least 4 percent of the votes on the first ballot. Below 4 percent means see ya later. The drop-out rule increases by 4 percentage points each ensuing ballot.

Entenza, who has made it clear for months that he's headed to the primary no matter the outcome of the endorsement, is the one candidate unlikely to survive beyond the first ballot. In fact, there is considerable speculation that Entenza will pull out of the endorsement race before the first ballot to avoid the appearance of a poor showing."

So, after this weekend, the question seems to be how many candidates will be in the primary; will it be Dayton, Entenza, and Ryback OR Kelliher (i.e. no endorsement), or will Ryback or Kelliher win the endorsement, and only one goes on to face Dayton & Entenza?

Traditionally DFLers absolutely will not support a candidate who doesn't seek the endorsement, so that Dayton and Entenza pledged to skip that process early is adding additional unpredictability to the election.

Later in his piece, Grow explains - though not in so many words - why the DFL has a long track record of nominating poor candidates:

"One longtime party activist, who asked not to be named, is a Dayton supporter and will not be a delegate at this year's convention. She believes that there will be large numbers of Dayton-leaning delegates at the convention who will tend to support "whoever would be the weakest candidate in the primary.""

With logic like that, is it any wonder they haven't won the Governorship in 30 years? Keep in mind that one-term Senator Dayton acknowledged this year that he suffers from bipolar disorder. And while the disease can be managed, I don't expect it would help his campaign, should Dayton win the primary.


Posted by: bsimon1 | April 22, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

ok go republicans i am running for mayor in 2011 donations made towww.piryx.com we need to take back controll

Posted by: reedlaf02 | April 22, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Oh come on. Jeff Greene is a self-made businessman and a Washington outsider. These guys are only going after him because he's not part of the political establishment. If there's one thing the last few years should have taught us it's that bringing in fresh thinking is a good thing.

Posted by: jackrabbit2270 | April 22, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

greene made his money investing against the crap that wall-street peddled. he figured it out. that's exactly the kind of intelligence we need in washington sorting out the financial mess washington created. someone that went to harvard business school, that understands (and calls out) the crooks who were peddling garbage mortgages.

Posted by: briancraig10 | April 22, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

another unfounded sexual slur against Frank by Mr. Zero. You and 37th can post your lies
ad nausea but that does not make them true. If Wallstreet Banks have clean hands then why is the SEC investigating GS for fraudulently setting hom these mtg packages and then hedging their bets against them?

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

See the democrats were saying last week that Obama gave 95% of Americans a tax break


What Obama really did is this: since 47% of Americans do not pay income taxes - Obama made it so those people could CLAIM THEIR TAX BREAK IN THE FORM OF CASH.

Obama is MAILING CHECKS TO PEOPLE - Obma has bascially borrowed $200 Billion from CHINA AND OBAMA IS MAILING THE MONEY TO PEOPLE.


This is why CNN and the other networks couldn't find the jobs the stimulus was supposed to be creating.


Obama is calling it the Earned Income Tax credit - it was a part of the Stimulus bill - Obama is BORROWING $200 BILLION FROM CHINA AND JUST MAILING THE MONEY INTO THE INNER CITIES. This is a SCANDAL OF THE HIGHEST ORDER.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

insanity is repeating the same disastrous economic policies

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

surely you are not referring to the proclamation of Bawney Fwank that Fannie and Freddie are just fine? (Keep the donations rolling).

I smell an ethics investigation starting about Jan 20th of next year.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

See the democrats were saying last week that Obama gave 95% of Americans a tax break


What Obama really did is this: since 47% of Americans do not pay income taxes - Obama made it so those people could CLAIM THEIR TAX BREAK IN THE FORM OF CASH.


Obama is MAILING CHECKS TO PEOPLE - Obma has bascially borrowed $200 Billion from CHINA AND OBAMA IS MAILING THE MONEY TO PEOPLE.

This is why CNN and the other networks couldn't find the jobs the stimulus was supposed to be creating.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Larry Kudlow has looked at the bill and says there are no carve outs but hey he is another socialsit shill.

Larry Linsey the architect of the Hoover like
economic meltdown is giving Obama economic advise, spare me the humor.

the D mantra for Nov needs to be the definition of insanity is_________fill in the blank. for example insanity is repeating the same disastrous economic policies of Larry Linsey, the GOP and POTUS Bush and expecting a different result.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I had no idea one could stutter while typing. Interesting. Is there such a thing as a bald posting as well?

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I see it now. Neo Ped has arrived.

Can you amuse us with your opinion of Israel, Palin, repubs, fellow posters and succesful Americans. Most of us on here really have no idea what you "think" about these topics.

No need to cover holdbacks, chuckee cheese, hording gold or billy goats, we all know exactly what you FEEL about those.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Oh happy days two unemployed losers trolling and jamming

Posted by: Noacoler | April 22, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

The average IQ just plummeted again? what happened?

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Second, as former Bush administration economist Larry Lindsey points out, the Dodd bill gives the Treasury and the FDIC authority to grant an unlimited number of loan guarantees to “too big to fail” firms. CEOs might want to have receipts for their contributions to Sen. Charles Schumer and the Obama campaign in hand when they apply.

Lindsey ticks off other special favors. “Labor gets ‘proxy access’ to bring its agenda items before shareholders as well as annual ‘say on pay’ for executives. Consumer activists get a brand-new agency funded directly out of the seniorage the Fed earns. No oversight by the Federal Reserve Board or by Congress on how the money is spent.”

Then there are carve-out provisions provided for particular interests. “Obtaining a carve-out isn’t rocket science,” one Republican K Street lobbyist told the Huffington Post. “Just give Chairman Dodd and Chuck Schumer a s—-load of money.”

The Obama Democrats portray the Dodd bill as a brave attempt to clamp tougher regulation on Wall Street. They know that polls show voters strongly reject just about all their programs to expand the size and scope of government, with the conspicuous exception of financial regulation.

Republicans have been accurately attacking the Dodd bill for authorizing bailouts of big Wall Street firms and giving them unfair advantages over small competitors. They might want to add that it authorizes Gangster Government — the channeling of vast sums from the politically unprotected to the politically connected.

That can boomerang even against the latter. Goldman Sachs employees gave nearly $1 million to the Obama campaign and $4.5 million to Democrats in 2008. That didn’t prevent Goldman from being shoved under the SEC bus.

Gangster Government may look good to those currently in favor, but as some of Al Capone’s confederates found out, that status is not permanent, and there is always more room under the bus.

— Michael Barone

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

the VAT was mentioned once by Paul Volker
and since then the GOP has gotten their panties in a bunch spamming that Obama supports it. its nonsense but predictable.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Oh happy days two unemployed losers trolling and jamming

Posted by: Noacoler | April 22, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Berry making another speech? a great opportunity to play berry BS bingo. Get your card here:

http://iowntheworld.com/blog/?p=21905

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Apologists for Chairman Zero claim that Tea Party concerns over taxes are ridiculous. They even claim Obama cut taxes, although when asked to show where tax rates have been reduced for anyone they are reduced to pointing to chump-change tax credits, which are not really tax cuts but a form of wealth redistribution.

Unlike Progressive Lefties, Tea Party Patriots are smart enough to know that trillion dollar deficits and trillion dollar health care entitlements will lead to multi-trillion dollar tax increases, because 1. Democrats won't cut spending, 2. Democrats won't cut spending especially when they are owned body and soul by public employee unions, and 3. Democrats won't cut spending.

Even the AP Admits: Millions face tax increases under Dems budget plan . And even these massive tax increases will do little to close the deficit because without fiscal discipline, spending increases will always outpace tax revenue increases. And the effect of taking trillions of dollars out of a weak economy will not be healthy... try taking two quarts of blood out of an anemic patient and see what happens.

And Chairman Zero, over-ruling denials from Robert Gibbs, has admitted that a VAT Tax is on the table.


When asked if he could see a potential VAT in this nation, the president said: "I know that there's been a lot of talk around town lately about the value-added tax. That is something that has worked for some countries. It's something that would be novel for the United States."

Yeah, a Stephen King novel. And it's certain the Democrats would love to impose a VAT, but they would also still like to hold a few seats outside of San Francisco, Chicago, and Seattle after the November elections, so they won't impose one just yet

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Obama's new explanation for everything:


Obama has already made statement in support of both sides of every issue.

So "no one should be surprised" that Obama takes any position - on any issue.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I have finally figured out the issue with dribbl and DDAWD:

Neanderthals may have disappeared from the world 30,000 years ago, but a new study suggests they never really left. For a recent genetic analysis suggests the ancient species actually interbred with the ancestors of modern humans twice.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

The only reason Ensign won't be voted out of office in November is because he isn't up for reelection until 2012. In two years he's toast.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

goodness, that could explain the lack of fundraising this quarter. alert the moonbats.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

curious what your obsession with "InnerCity" is all about? you do know that phrase is
code, right?

Cheney endorsed Hutchinson in our primary so lets not overreach as to the significance of endorsements. Curious who Bush is endorsing in these races, he has sure been absent in the discussion since leaving office.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I see mollusk brain is at it again, dabbling in something way out of his lane - intelligent thought.

Liberals spent over $800 billion on the previous ineffective bail-out, but the next time around, there is simply no possibility that it could cost more than, say, a wild guess, $50 billion. therefore there is no threat of taxpayers ever having to prop up another liberal campaign contributor.

You see, the big government liberals have lots of history with succesfully managing finances, just look at the PBGC, the Social security "trust fund", the medicare/medicaid liability, in fact, we are over 1.4 trillion in debt this year alone thanks to the big spending free loaders in DC government. Now why would anyone think that they didn't get the numbers or policies correct again? surely they have figured everything out by now?

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Have a good day, folks! Lovely weather here, 68 and sunny. Out to enjoy...

Posted by: drindl


looks like drivl found some change in the couch cushions.

did the average IQ on this thread just jump up about 20 points?

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

leichtman1


Clearly, this is a problem - it doesn't matter what democratic Congresses did in the past - under Republican Presidents.

The idea that the Republicans did it before - or compromised with a democratic Congress - is probably more accurate.

THE TRUTH IS THIS - OBAMA TOOK AN ADDITIONAL $200 BILLION - BORROWED FROM CHINA - AND IS JUST SENDING THE MONEY OUT IN CHECKS - MUCH OF IT TO THE INNER CITIES.

It is true.

No wonder the stimulus isn't creating any jobs.

Wow.

This is serious.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers


There is alot of talk in there about children - but the bottom line is people WITHOUT children can still get money.


Obama is borrowing $200 Billion from China - and just sending out checks to people - many in the inner cities.

Geesshh- no wonder the stimulus funds disappeared and no one can find any jobs created.

Well well.

When people realize that OBAMA IS BORROWING $200 BILLION FROM CHINA JUST TO SEND MONEY OUT IN CHECKS TO THE INNER CITIES they are not going to be happy.

This is a joke.

This is Obama economics at its worse - AND IT MAKES A MOCKERY OF THE DEFICIT AND A MOCKERY OF ALL OF OBAMA'S TAXES.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

sorry don t know who Burka is but the turnout at my polling place was miserable >10%. there was only 1 polling place open in sw houston some 10 miles away. The campaign for governor surprisingly has been awfully quiet here except for some proPerry stories in the Chronicle. I am hoping White energizes hispanic voters linking the Az profiling legislation to him. It needs to be thrown out there against him; what can Perry say I support it which he likely does and pleases the right and loses him hispanics in droves or he opposes it and ticks off the right wing. Its a lose lose for him. Greene and McElroy were making Texas look like a third world country and that is terrible to attract fortune 500 companies, thankfully they are both toast. talk of Perry as a POTUS candidate could backfire here and show he is using re-election as a stepping stone for higher office, what a joke no one wants a Texan in the WH.
get back to me after the first debate about the race, its too early to write off White, remember Perry looked like a deer caught in headlights against Bell in the debates.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Now, Cheney is endosring Rubio?!

Why?

Again, what has Rubio ever accomplished that would afford him the right to be a US Senator?

I guess any former state senator who spouts the party line can be a US Senator if he does nothing while in office and aligns himself with the right people.

This is indicative of the age of Obama, I suppose.

Posted by: Jay20 | April 22, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

I see the two zeros are taking over and the comments section is about to hit rock bottom, as usual.

Have a good day, folks! Lovely weather here, 68 and sunny. Out to enjoy...

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

zook, your talking points fax is broken. Republicans aren't claiming it's an endless bailout anymore.

Hmmm...I wonder how many economics PhDs can't tell the difference between a taxpayer bailout and a bank funded liquidation fund.

Probably only the ones who pretend to have PhDs.

Posted by: DDAWD | April 22, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Yes. In politics, money talks.

But what good is money talk when a covert government program infringes upon the free speech rights of American citizens? When will Team Obama get a grip on a rogue bureaucracy? Case in point:

U.S. GOV'T CENSORS NET POLITICAL SPEECH OF 'TARGETED' AMERICANS, SAYS VETERAN JOURNALIST

• Real-time intercepts, re-directed web traffic to "spoofed" sites controlled by government operatives.

• "Man in the middle attacks" let rogue surveillance contractors censor -- or maliciously tamper with telecommunications -- on a whim.

• Media web site blog and comments moderation: perfect "cover" for ideological censorship?

For the full story, see:

http://nowpublic.com/world/u-s-govt-censors-net-political-speech-targeted-americans

IT'S ALL PART OF THE SAME 'MATRIX"...

http://nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves
NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "Gestapo USA..."

Posted by: scrivener50 | April 22, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

The only reason Ensign won't be voted out of office in November is because he isn't up for reelection until 2012. In two years he's toast.

News Flash: Cheney apparently just endorsed Rubio. I'm awaiting the inevitable Endorsement Hierarchy post and subsequent feeding frenzy in the Comments section. :)

Posted by: Gallenod | April 22, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

the moon bat squad is so intent on financial regulation of private firms, but the actual culprit for the economic tsunami was government speonsored mortgage giants Fannie and Freddie. Those liberal genuises continue to maintain a hands off policy for this cash cow reelection opportunity for Bawney Fwank and the drummed out of office for corruption chris Dudd.

that is why berry and his economics continue to just be a shallow attempt at government takover. the endless bail out of favorite contributors and associated criminals and cabinet members (but I repeat myself) must continue the gravy train of graft and bribes.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

JakeD3

If you know where I can get paid to write comments, please send that information onto me.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: itkonlyyou23 | April 22, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Chance of Ensign being voted out in november = 0

Dingy spineless Harry would trade that for all the donations in the world.

Posted by: Comrade_Zero | April 22, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Blade, you sexy thing,

When Republicans say, November can't come soon enough, they are not kidding. It is a long way away and the economy is, slowly but steadily, getting better and better. Credit for accomplishments will flow to the party in charge indeed.

Posted by: shrink2 | April 22, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

37th, instead of fuming about what EITC *might* be doing, why don't you do your own research. Here is a cogent description of the program, with lots of links you can since you are so very suspi... I mean interested. I bet CRS has a brilliant paper on it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earned_income_tax_credit

Posted by: margaretmeyers | April 22, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

I believe that it's a mistake for Florida Republicans to be so dismissive of Crist. He's accomplished substantially more than Rubio ever has in his various offices.

As several of you have pointed it out, Meeks shouldn't be underestimated. You could make the argument that many people in the Senate today got there because their opponents underestimated them while busying tearing their other opponents apart -- Barbara Boxer and Barack Obama were perfect examples of this.

Also, no one seems to be asking the question "what type of senator would Rubio be?" His (allegedly) being ideologically pure and unencumbered by real-world complexities should not be enough to qualify him as a US Senator. [Furthermore, this GOP credit card business may suggest that he is no more able to control spending than the liberal Democrats in Washington.]

Posted by: Jay20 | April 22, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Bondosan -- do you know Ensign raised a total of $50 -- dollars -- in the first quarter. One guy gave him 50 bucks. Harry Reid may not be 'popular' but Rs in Nevada are laughable.

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I think Joe francis could run as Free Market Republican in Alaska. He has never faced charges in Alaska, and the high% of lonely young video-buying men living there could give him an unbeatable demographic edge.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | April 22, 2010 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the chicken link drindl, it did make me laugh.

Harry Reid just might be able to keep all that campaign cash in the bank, with dipsh*ts like Sue Lowden and John Ensign running the GOP in Nevada.

Posted by: Bondosan | April 22, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Very interesting items today. Lots of unpredictability, intra and interparty fights. I'll keep plenty of popcorn on stock for the fall.

While driving in this morning, I heard an interesting discussion on C-SPAN. There was a detailed poll of the electorate regarding issues. There is desire for compromise on most issues, abortion being a notable exception. The most interesting result was on a question about if one's party should compromise on issues or stand firm.

Liberals responding to the poll favor compromise by a 59 - 36 margin. Conservatives responding to the poll oppose compromise by a 60 - low 30s margin. [Was driving so couldn't write it down.] That about jibes with the current Congress. Democrats incorporate some ideas from Republicans who overwhelmingly oppose bills.

The guest pointed out that any credit for accomplishments will flow to the party in charge, so it is generally poor politics for Republicans to go along. The FinReg bill being a notable exception. McConnell was about to be undercut by several Republican senators and the optics of going to NYC right before the issue comes up are pretty bad.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | April 22, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"Drindl,
Why do you have a problem with Steele's comments? What he says is true, and I think he would like to change that. "

No, I think he's absolutely right... it's just that they never admit that stuff, they always deny, deny, deny. He probably would like to change it, but it ain't gonna happen. In fact, they're doubling down on it.

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

I know Jeff Green was selected fifth overall, but I don't think he was given a billion dollar contract, was he? Seems like it would make it hard to stay under the NBA salary cap.

Posted by: DDAWD | April 22, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Drindl,
Why do you have a problem with Steele's comments? What he says is true, and I think he would like to change that.

Posted by: AndyR3 | April 22, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Scrivener is right. Someone IS being paid to spam the comments section (MerciSalisha).

Posted by: JakeD3 | April 22, 2010 10:01 AM | Report abuse

"House Republicans' top vote counter predicted today that if the Senate passes a bipartisan financial regulatory reform bill that mirrors a White House plan to impose stricter rules on Wall Street, his members will oppose it broadly."

No surprises here.

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

re: #5. I had the impression, from a great distance, that the DFL race was between Kelliher and Ryback, now relegated to rounding out the "top tier". How many tiers? How many caniddates? Who is for real?

Tell us, bsimon [and other MN posters].
==========
Off topic to Leichtman: Did you see Burka's break down of the Loehrmann-Green race? He used actual county numbers and it looks like the Big Empty is voting with more enthusiasm than the metros, judging by the [R] S.Ct. runoff. It is an uphill fight for White but he needs BIG turnout in the metros to have a shot. I want it to happen, but I see signs of our being stuck with Goodhair.
==========

Posted by: mark_in_austin | April 22, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Talk about letting the fox into the hen house. Greene made his money with credit default stock swaps, which are one of the things behind the stock market meltdown. And he's a real estate developer. I can't believe Florida voters would elect him no matter how much money he has. After all, politicians only need money to buy OUR vote. Vote NO for Greene, whatever he runs for.

Posted by: njglea | April 22, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Michael Steele -- what a gift:

n candid remarks made before a group of students at DePaul University, RNC Chairman Michael Steele said African-Americans “don’t have a reason” to vote for Republicans because “we haven’t done a very good job of giving you one.” The Chicago Sun-Times reports:

Steele: Why should an African-American vote Republican?

“You really don’t have a reason to, to be honest — we haven’t done a very good job of really giving you one. True? True,” Republican National Chairman Michael Steele told 200 DePaul University students Tuesday night. […]

“For the last 40-plus years we had a ‘Southern Strategy’ that alienated many minority voters by focusing on the white male vote in the South. Well, guess what happened in 1992, folks, ‘Bubba’ went back home to the Democratic Party and voted for Bill Clinton.”

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

New Rasmussen poll: Rubio 37%, Crist 30%, Meek 22%

http://bit.ly/aRpF3p

Posted by: saintpetersblog | April 22, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Well, in fairness to 37th, part of his contention based on fact: that the stimulus bill expanded EITC coverage to include higher incomes. However, if you factor in inflation since 1986, expansion under the stimulus hasn't restored the net level of support that the EITC provides to what even Reagan authorized, so it still lags behind what prior Republican administrations approved.

However, as discussion of the EITC has no direct topical relationsip to Chris's five news items above, I will now apologize for being off topic.

Posted by: Gallenod | April 22, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZezfjWox5s

'Take a chicken to the doctor'

Watch this ad -- it's really funny!

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

"Can someone with Greene's background be a serious contender anywhere, even with all that money? I hope not."

Well, there's Linda McMahon, worse in a lot of ways. R, CT. There's Carly Fiorina, currently being investigated for illegal dealings with Iran, Russia and China, R-CA.

There were a few porn star candidates, all R.

Mike Tyson, though, baffling.

Posted by: drindl | April 22, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

I presume that the EITC that I brought up last night was established in 1975 by Gerald Ford
and then proudly expanded by POTUS Reagan.
Both of these Rs would likely be driven out of today's radical R party.

"Beginning with the 1987 tax year, the EITC escalated. Public Law 99-514 (H.R. 3838), signed by President Reagan on October 22, 1986, as the Tax Reform Act of 1986, increased the EITC to 14 percent with a maximum of $851. The figure then rose steadily to a maximum of $953 in 1990, with a partial benefit available for incomes up to $20,264."

"Almost 20 years ago, as he signed into law the tax bill expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit, """President Ronald Reagan""" hailed it as “the best anti-poverty, the best pro-family, the best job creation measure to come out of Congress"

The TeaParty and 37th would label Reagan, Ford and certainly Nixon as socialists today. Do your research sir BEFORE you rant.

Posted by: leichtman1 | April 22, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Oops, forgot to include that Colorado showed lots of Tea Party membership. (Though I'm sure most of you figured that out.)

Posted by: Gallenod | April 22, 2010 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, Marco Rubio is being investigated by the US attorney and the IRS according to news reports out of Florida.

Posted by: hlabadie | April 22, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Colorado will be another interesting set of Senate primaries. Yesterday's map of Tea Party concentrations showed some of the heaviest concentrations of Tea Partiers, which may be why Norton (the establishment R candidate) is having trouble getting traction. I think Buck may take her out and get the R nomination.

Bennett... well, he's a nice guy, seems competent, and might hold on to the D nomination. But he might be too nice a guy to compete very effectively in the general election. His best hope is that Buck gets the R nomination and then somehow alienates the middle of the electorate. Otherwise, he can probably look forward to going back to a career in education (after getting schooled in the election).

Posted by: Gallenod | April 22, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Margaret, that guy has legal issues about underage girls in his videos. I dont' even think he is in the country because of that, but I may be wrong.

I agree with you Mark that I see no way a guy who made billions off of the thing that brought down our entire economic structure can possibly think that he will win a primary much less an election. But then again Meg Whitman never voted before and she is trying to buy the Governor's office in CA, so maybe it really only how much money you are willing to spend.

And who invites Mike Tyson to their wedding?

Posted by: AndyR3 | April 22, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Surely John Edwards or Eliot Spitzer have residency in Florida so they can enter this race...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | April 22, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

The thought that a guy who made his money from credit default swaps would end up as a Democratic nominee for the Senate in Florida has to have Republican strategists drooling in rapturous anticipation.

Greene taking out Meek as the D nominee also won't deter Crist from going independent, as it would only make it easier for him to peel off D voters.

However, hasn't Meek already qualified for the statewide race through petition, regardless of how the primary turns out? That could mean both Greene (through the primary) and Meek (though petition) running as D's, Crist as an I, and Rubio as a R. That would put Florida at the top of my Most Interesting Senate Races list for 2010.

No one seems to be giving Meeks much chance in the race regardless of who else runs. Granted, he's never faced a challenge in his safe House district, but he's a former Florida state trooper (rank of captain) and has spent 15 years in Florida politics. Given that the other three names all have some baggage (waffling RINO, credit cards, and credit defaults), Meeks may start looking good in comparison by November.

As to Margaret's question about Joe Francis: I'd say D in California, where he's more likely find some little district that considers him a producer of classic films instead of a merchant of cheesy schlock.

Posted by: Gallenod | April 22, 2010 8:46 AM | Report abuse

If anyone has any additional information on this issue, please send it over -


Did Obama increase the earned income tax credit in a way that the 47% of Americans who do not pay federal income taxes can CLAIM A CASH REFUND ???

If so, then Obama just BORROWED $200 BILLION FROM CHINA AND JUST MAILED IT OUT TO PEOPLE.


Is this why the stimulus is not creating any jobs ?

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Obama lied.

Transparency died.

Posted by: Moonbat | April 22, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Yesterday the tea party discussion went into the claims of the democrats last week during the tea partie rallies that 95% of the American People got tax cuts. I have already put out some questions so later I will have more details on this topic.

The QUESTION IS: if 47% of Americans do not PAY federal income taxes, how is it that the democrats are claiming they gave 95% of the American People tax cuts ???

The ANSWER : The stimulus could have given earned income tax credits to people who don't pay ANY taxes - allowing them to CLAIM AN INCOME TAX REFUND ON MONEY THEY NEVER PAID IN. So if this is true. Obama is just mailing checks into the inner cities.

So, do we have a situation in which 47% of the American People are getting CASH REFUNDS from the stimulus - even though they pay ZERO income taxes ???

If so - OBAMA IS BORROWING MONEY FROM CHINA AND JUST MAILING CHECKS INTO THE INNER CITIES.

Obama has got to be kidding.

I'm looking into the actual details - however it appears that this is the case.


ANYONE wondering why the stimulus bill isn't creating jobs ??? Because the democrats weighed it down with such progams like this.

DID OBAMA JUST MAIL OUT CHECKS TOTALLYING $200 BILLION to people who don't pay any federal income taxes ???

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Crist should NOT go independent under these circumstances - there is too much in play right now - too many moving parts.


Clearly, to make a career-changing decision based on a poll with Meeks in it - when the candidate could change to a billionaire is a serious flaw in the reasoning.


Next, Rubio could implode with this credit card situation. So Crist should file as a Republican - and wait to see how things play out in May and June.

In mid-June Crist should decide whether to drop out or go on. If at that point it doesn't look like he isn't going to win, Crist should bank his money, endorse Rubio and wait for another race he can win.

If in mid-June, Crist is in much better shape, he can continue.

Forget this independent business for now.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | April 22, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

CC wrote: "Greene, who became a billionaire over the past few years by pioneering credit default swaps...is apparently now weighing the idea of challenging Rep. Kendrick Meek [snip] former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson was the best man at Greene's wedding, former madam Heidi Fleiss lived with Greene for a year after getting out of jail, and he engaged in an extended legal fight with director Ron Howard."

MM asked about Joe Francis. If Greene makes it, I would say "FL" and "D". Same for John Edwards and Elliot Spitzer.

Can someone with Greene's background be a serious contender anywhere, even with all that money? I hope not.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | April 22, 2010 7:25 AM | Report abuse

So, if Joe Francis -- the unsavory, shrimpy-but-rich-little-sh*t, entrepreneur behind Girls Gone Wild, decided it was time to enter politics, what state and party would he chose?

Consider this an unofficial Fix poll.

.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | April 22, 2010 6:19 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: MerciSalisha | April 22, 2010 6:19 AM | Report abuse

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Posted by: MerciSalisha | April 22, 2010 6:18 AM | Report abuse

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