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Democrats Look Strong in New Polls

COVINGTON, Ky. -- Sitting in a hotel room overlooking the Ohio River (not to mention Paul Brown Stadium and the Great American Ballpark) it's easy to feel as though you are at the center of the political world.

Ohio River Ramble

Chris Cillizza

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Chris Cillizza
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As we've written previously, political ads dominate the morning and evening newscasts, and polls are being released constantly. Two surveys made public today caught our eye.

First, a Columbus Dispatch poll showed Democrats in good shape in the races for governor and U.S. Senate. Rep. Ted Strickland (D) continues to run strong for the seat of Gov. Bob Taft, who will leave office at the end of his current term. Strickland had a 52 percent to 33 percent lead over Secretary of State Ken Blackwell (R).

In the Senate race, Rep. Sherrod Brown (D) led Sen. Mike DeWine (R) 47 percent to 42 percent -- a telling sign of the state of play in Ohio, since Republicans have outspent Democrats in the race by a two-to-one margin.

The other poll of interest is in Indiana's 8th district where the Evansville Courier-Press showed Vanderburgh County Sheriff Brad Ellsworth (D) with a 47 percent to 32 percent lead over six-term Rep. John Hostettler (R). The poll jibes with an internal Democratic survey we wrote about earlier in the Ramble that showed Ellsworth ahead by 17 points.

What do these two Indiana 8 surveys mean? That if Hostettler isn't the most vulnerable incumbent in the country, he's right near the top.

By Chris Cillizza  |  September 24, 2006; 7:54 PM ET
Categories:  Ohio River Ramble  
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Comments

bhoomes: Who exactly do you plan on assassinating to create a Supreme Court vacancy for Janice Rogers Brown to fill?

And if you think Republicans will gain 2 Senate seats, would you care to put any money on that? Or are you too cowardly to put your money where your mouth is? Charlie Cook just yesterday predicted a 3-5 seat gain for Democrats.

http://sandwichrepair.blogspot.com

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | September 28, 2006 1:48 AM | Report abuse

"KoZ::so it was the dems who ok'ed the infamous 250 million dollar "bridge to nowhere"?? Medicare Part D?? The biggest expansion of gov in a generation? These were liberal doings were they?? You really need to back off your assertion that Shrub and company are fiscally sane cause they ain't....and you know OBL is dead how??"

He heard it on Fox News. Duh.

Posted by: Ohio guy | September 26, 2006 12:17 AM | Report abuse

but you're a trotskyite, aren't you? most neocons are.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2006 6:29 PM | Report abuse

don't let Trotsky hear you say that. who? Never heard of him. no such person.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 5:46 PM | Report abuse

'depending on what your definition of "history" is'

exactly. mine is the one with actual facts in it.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2006 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Best to just stick with the lame jokes, you are clearly out of your league. At least this is a clear indication of why you can't win elections. you owe me for that revelation. do something with it.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 5:17 PM | Report abuse

NRO took the time to debunk all those lies that clinton placed in the record, as if no one would bother to check the veracity. He was right in your case. that NRO article was not an example of facts, it was actually someone who read and analyzed the famed book that clinton said exonerated him. too bad that is not what the book said and that is not what history shows, depending on what your definition of "history" is.
comparing NRO to Michale Moore is just not accurate - one is a respected editorial publication (albeit with an agenda), the other is a fiction creator based on humor and distortion (again with a clear agenda). but now I see why you are having trouble coming up with any facts to buttress your claims, you are searching on clinton's website and in Moore's movies. nope, no facts there.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm writing a children's book -- Zouk in LaLa Land.

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 5:13 PM | Report abuse

From CBO for 2001 - all I could find. but this is silly, everyone knows Dems spend like crazy. the only possible concession is the difference in taxes - Rs would rather you spend the money:

five year plan $B
R D
non-defense cuts -102 -11
mandatory policies 12 10
defense increases 12 10
interest 21 17

http://www.house.gov/budget_democrats/congressional_budgets/fy2001/fy01budres/Conf_vs_Dem_Alt.pdf#search='Republican%20budget%20dem%20response'

notice the biggest difference - cuts to programs. dems just can't find any goverment program that is worth getting rid of.

But this simple example shows why arguing with a Dem is so pointless at times. a simple known fact is open to debate while longstanding truths are twisted and distorted. now i provided a fact. come up with one, just one.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 5:08 PM | Report abuse

So King your getting your "facts" from the National Review??? Wouldn't that be like us dems getting our "facts" from Michael Moore??...You need to bring alot more then that to search out your "adversary"....

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 25, 2006 5:00 PM | Report abuse

The last three Gallup polling periods actually show a decrease in those that think it was a mistake to go to Iraq. Right now, Americans are split 49%-49%, the lowest point since last December and down from a high of 57% in March and April '06. Oops. - Spruiell

the bad news for you just keeps pouring in from the voters who are now paying attention and don't care about skin color or Jewish heritage. Its called issues and ideas and you are bereft of them.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 4:56 PM | Report abuse

"But the bottom line is that Bill Clinton, the commander-in-chief, could not find the will to order the military into action against al Qaeda, and Bill Clinton, the head of the executive branch, could not find the will to order the CIA and FBI to act. No matter what the former president says on Fox, or anywhere else, that is his legacy in the war on terror."
From: Byron York
http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=MDM4N2E1MzU5ZjQ0YTA3YmJiYzEyYjQ2ZDBiNWJlYjE=

Facts hurt - Ouch!

Looking for a worthy adversary today. not the name callers armed with no sense or facts. I am searching for one fact to back up these lame excuses for denials.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 4:53 PM | Report abuse

c'mon KoZ "the r's have been bad lately"..what 6 years and running? that is a pretty long "lately".."the dems would have spent more in every case" you are always the one who espouses proof so prove that statement...

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 25, 2006 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Arguing and losing. How telling.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 4:48 PM | Report abuse

>>>Is Hitler dead? how do you know?

Zouk has lost it everyone. It's beyond pathetic at this point. I really honestly feel bad that we are arguing with someone that deranged.

Posted by: F&B | September 25, 2006 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Productivity based on new Internet technology, a Republican congress and you want to credit this to Clinton. He singlehandedly managed this by overcoming the private sector with his big government programs. Please. Inform me as to a single Fed program he cut - besides the military, the FBI and the CIA? He tried to veto welfare reform twice. Some frugal guy. I don't need to explain the Laffer curve, he is actually a productive economist, something you Dems are in short supply of in your ranks. So include military and economics that you are victimized by.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 4:30 PM | Report abuse

KOZ - Oh you do go on, don't you? Someone told you that all the Democrats do is tax and spend, some time about 15 years ago, didn't they? Take a look at what Clinton did with the federal government, with pay as you go plans and cutting federal spending. It happened, really. That's why we had a surplus when President Bush took office. Look it up.

Posted by: John In Houston | September 25, 2006 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Oh KOZ, you are funny. "Have you ever heard of a cost benefit analysis"

I beleive it's the current administration that could benefit from a Managerial Accounting course or two:

1. Cut taxes
2. Spend billions on an unnecessary war, or to paint it in the most flattering light, a war based on an untested theory.
3. Repeat

Sure method towards running up huge defecits.

Please don't tell me how tax cuts will offset their impact by improving the economy and increasing tax revenues. As a President, Mr. Bush chose to spend billions on a war, and cut revenues, with no sure way to increase revenues through other means. Period.

Posted by: John In Houston | September 25, 2006 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Joe Wilson told me. how do you think George w got elected? the same way Clinton did- stole your issues. People wanted all those programs. the Dems biggest complaint is that they weren't fully funded. don't blame congress for enacting what the people wanted - the Dems would have spent more in every case. for any Dem to bring up the idea of fiscal responsibility is just hilarious. the Rs have been bad lately ,but the other option is worse.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 4:05 PM | Report abuse

'Rs don't sell out their country for political gain'

oh christ LOL. let me get off the floor, i'm dying.

mainlining the koolaid. i mean, come on, you can't reason with someone who belongs to a cult...

present him with facts and he claps his hands even louder while shreiking, 'liberals suck, liberals suck' -- a trained seal.

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 3:51 PM | Report abuse

KoZ::so it was the dems who ok'ed the infamous 250 million dollar "bridge to nowhere"?? Medicare Part D?? The biggest expansion of gov in a generation? These were liberal doings were they?? You really need to back off your assertion that Shrub and company are fiscally sane cause they ain't....and you know OBL is dead how??

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 25, 2006 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the Maryland senate race, a new poll came out today. Cardin is up 51-40. Another race slipping out of the grasp of Republicans.

Posted by: Zathras | September 25, 2006 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Pol Junk: so I take it you have seen this report? Or are you just accepting the NYT's version? Are you one of those people who called the CIA stupid when they didn't find the slam-dunk WMDs but now swallow anything contrary to Bush they produce? but I am curious as to how you were able to see that report, verify its contents and analyze the hypothesis test and its p-values. so what were those figures? Or maybe you just did a regression on the data and fitted a line. what was the R value?

always the same Big G responses from you Libs - 1. eliminate fraud and waste (Why hasn't anyone ever done this before - brilliant original idea here??) 2. Get bin Laden - why? How do you know he's alive? How will you ever know? Is Hitler dead? how do you know? how about Fidel? Let's send 100K troops after an old cave-ridden figurehead and really allow them to mock us. you dems have no concept of the military do you? 3. spend, spend , spend on union and set-aside projects. don't worry about the cost or the benefits. 4. enlist allies and provide aid. more spending and more grovelling. Have you ever heard of a cost/benefit analysis or do you just live to spend other people's money?

now you see why these dumb ideas were ignored, nothing new here, nothing worth anything.

I guess if I'm not the only one who noticed how defensive and mendacious clinton was, it must have been obvious to most observant people who hold no agenda. Back to his usual MO - yell, look stern and point fingers. you must remember his most famous clip??? It's called a tell.

Were there ANY factual ststements? Oh yeah - I did not have sex with that intern depending on what your defintion of sex and 'is' is. As usual. Serial lier.

Please provide one military escapade ever that went exactly as planned and survived contact with the enemy. Oh, I keep forgetting, you Libs know nothing about the military except they need to be cut.

so please name your single issue left after gas prices are down, OBL is dead and you already refused to vote on min wage. I remember - we're not Bush. good one losers. Now you are lying victims who are only concerned with cleaning the history of your transgressions and have no ideas for the future.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Judge,

No, I am not saying that it would be bloodless. It is just that India is a much more extreme case. There was no Iraqi nation prior to its creation in the early 20's on the ruins of the Ottoman Empire. India is a huge and diverse land. Over its history, large parts of it had been ruled by various conquerors. It was not a united country when the British took over - even during the Raj, large portions of the country were ruled by marajahs under British "protection". The nationalist movements did have a vision of a united India. There never was a real Iraqi nation before its creation after WWI. Certainly, partition of Iraq would not be bloodless - there is an ongoing civil war between Shia and Sunni now. I think the granting of autonomous regions in a loose federal system would go a long way towards calming the situation. Baghdad would have to remain a federal city and peacekeepers would be needed for some time to keep order in the city. Giving the contending factions their own regions to rule with proportional share of the oil revenues is the best idea I have heard for getting out of this mess. I opposed the invasion but we can't simply withdraw and let it dissolve into total chaos. Aside from our moral responsibility to help fix the mess we made, we run the risk of Iraq becoming a failed state with sizable numbers of terrorists operating their own mini-states within it. Turkey and Iran would be sorely tempted to establish control over sections of the country to protect themeselves from spillover problems. The Turks are highly suspicious of the Kurds anyway. More troops would be needed to implement the federal solution and protect people who do need to move. A great deal of money would need to be pledged to avoid a humanitarian disaster. There would need to be a compensation fund for displaced Iraqis. I see this solution as horrendously difficult but easier to pull off than resolving the civil war any other way.

Posted by: JimD in Fl | September 25, 2006 2:27 PM | Report abuse

To the person who criticized Chris and Jim for analyzing Ohio races from Kentucky, I don't want to say you are geographically challenged, but they did note their hotel had a view of Paul Brown Stadium (home of the Cincinnati Bengals) and Great American Ballpark (home of the Cincinnati Reds). Perhaps you're not a sports fan either.

Their hotel, which I recognize in the video, is across the Ohio River from downtown Cincinnati in Covington, Ky. It's part of the Cincinati metro area, just like people in New Jersey go to NY, and those in Virginia and Maryland go to DC for work.

Now you can see it's not so hard to take in the entire area, which with Indiana 9th, Ohio 1,2, and 8 (Boehner's district) and Kentucky 4th, are all part of the Cincinnat metro area.

Posted by: howard | September 25, 2006 1:56 PM | Report abuse

JimD: I agree that India was not Iraq. That is why I only estimated 100,000 dead rather than the millions that died during the partitioning of India. Was India truly a well-defined country when it was taken over by the British East India Company?

If you are saying that the partitioning of Iraq would be bloodless I would disagree. The partitioning of Iraq is already occurring as Sunnis in Shiite neighborhoods (and vice versa) are forced to either leave or be murdered. The human toll is already staggering and if a series of Balkanizing lines are drawn by some political compromise the moment this information becomes public those who need to leave (and all of their possessions) will become targets. It will be similar to what happened to India in that any sudden 'migrant' may be easy to spot simply by the fact that they are leaving. If they attempt to take any possessions (an even more obvious label) with them they will undoubtedly be shot dead within moments.

We broke Iraq and it's a bloody mess. Life under Saddam Hussein (where Sunni-Shiite marriages were common, for example) is beginning to look like a picnic.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 1:18 PM | Report abuse

on Sherrod Browne in Ohio, the polls are meaningless.

The Republicans control the ballot box. Or as they say, it won't be over until the "river ward" and grave yard vote comes in.

While the seat is one of many, symbolically it is important and set the tone for the RNC in 2008 if they lose.

They, Mr. Blackwells troops, and Diebold won't let that happen.

Posted by: bob | September 25, 2006 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Oh and change starts in middle America like it should. Cheers to Ohioans for standing up to the Bush Administration and the R's ineptitude and corruption.

Posted by: F&B | September 25, 2006 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Only 2nd in importance to the NIE estimate (imho) is Clinton's MTP appearance that was vastly overshadowed by his Faux appearance. The key moment being his response to EZ-Pass Russert's question (the same one he posed to Darth Cheney), "How could we have better spent the $300+ Billion that we spent on Iraq":

Clinton said (paraphrasing of course)

1) Even in regards to being FORCED to spend it on Iraq, it could have easily been MUCH better spent and significant amounts were wasted or stolen.

2) Instead of going to Iraq, FINISH THE JOB in Afghanistan by committing the troops necessary to get Bin Laden regardless of how long it takes

3) Immediately engage in the 9/11 commission reccomendations to secure our homeland, ports, transportation, power plants, chemical factories, infrastructure

4) I believe he also mentioned getting allies involved and stepping up humanitarian aid to win hearts and minds (i may be wrong, he may not have said that).

transcript:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14907031/

I couldnt wait for Zouk to post about the finger-wagging b/c every R caller on Wash Journal (cspan) this morning said the same thing. Hilarious. Oh and like Zouk, not ONE of them mentioned ANY of the factual assertions Clinton made. And not ONE of them mentioned the enourmous enourmous contribution to world society by raising over $7 BILLION for the greatest problems the world is now facing: AIDS, Climate Change, Racial and Religious Reconciliation. Why not Zouk? Clinton helping the world too much for your soft squishy brain to handle?

Re: the guy who committed the single worst attack on US soil, Clinton said:

"I tried and failed. BUT AT LEAST I TRIED."

So true.

Where is Bin Laden. Its the War on Terror stupid. Its the economy stupid. What have you done for me lately. KOZ and the Neocons are just whiners with no ideas and no agenda. The Dems are going to roll your bones right off the stage. And I can't wait.

Posted by: F&B | September 25, 2006 12:59 PM | Report abuse

"Rs don't sell out their country for political gain"

If so, please explain to me why Rumsfeld is still Secretary of Defense after being the person in charge of a military adventure that was not fully planned? If it isn't to provide political cover for the CinC who is Captain of the ship and ultimately responsible, then what is it? Because Rumsfeld has the full support of the military?

Rumsfeld stays for the President's political purposes. During a War, in the position in which Rumsfeld occupies, that is indeed selling out the country for political purposes.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | September 25, 2006 12:56 PM | Report abuse

By the way, my knowledge of the partition of India comes from several sources, the most readable is "Freedom At Midnight" by Larry Collins and Dominique LaPierre (c) 1975 by Simon and Schuster, NY

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 25, 2006 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Judge

If you are comparing a possible partition of Iraq to the partition of India, there are some major differences. Greater India was intact for quite a while before partition. Iraq is an artificial creation basically formed by the British Colonial Office after the Ottoman Empire dissolved following World War I. I do not believe that there would be anything like the population movements following India's partition. Furthermore, India's situation was complicated by the Princely States - semi-independent principalities within India. The rulers were given the option of joining either India or Pakistan. The whole Kashmir problem revolves around the Kashmiri leader choosing India despite having a Muslim majority population. Another serious complication is that the precise boundaries between India and Pakistan were not established until the day independence was granted. The decision for partition was taken about 2.5 months before independence was granted. Furthermore, the border commission was operating under the assumption that relations between India and Pakistan would be friendly and defense considerations did not matter. The border commission was composed of judges nominated by the Congress Party and the Muslim Leauge chaired by a British civil servant, unfamiliar with India, who had the final say since the Muslim and Hindu judges could not find consensus on almost anything. Presumably, the establishment of autonomous regions in Iraq would follow a more reasonable schedule.

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 25, 2006 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Is anybody else concerned about the aside in the above post that "Republicans have outspent Democrats in the race by a two-to-one margin."

Imagine what the numbers might look like if Dems took this seriously enough to put money into it?

I have blogged about the severely outspent Dems at http://scootmandubious.blogspot.com/2006/09/will-gop-bucks-buy-them-mid-terms.html

Posted by: scootmandubious | September 25, 2006 12:50 PM | Report abuse

" Have you not heard of all the chances Clinton had to actually "get" OBL?"

Good. KOZ admits that even though Bush had 270 days to do something - anything - he created zero (0) 'chances' to 'get' OBL. Nice to know that he thinks Bush is a horrible president as well. Case closed. Next topic.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 12:49 PM | Report abuse

"Rs don't sell out their country for political gain."

No, just for financial gain..

...over 95% of all companies that moved their jobs overseas over the past six years are wholly or primarily owned and managed by Republicans.

Faith should be reserved for spiritual beings, not political parties.

Only Cult Republicans keep making excuses.

Those who hold the Constitution and democracy above their partison interests have long since ceased defending the neocons who hijacked their party.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2006 12:44 PM | Report abuse

KOZ,

I am completely floored (and actually laughing). You are questioning the NIE? Again, its created by the Intelligence Community (IC) not the press. I find it rather humorous that you believe to no more than the experts who work for our intelligence agencies.

I have never seen such vitriol from someone who clearly lacks the facts.

Posted by: Political Junkie | September 25, 2006 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Bhoomes:: don't think you'll be picking up any of the seats mentioned by you..NJ might be an outside shot and it's just that an outside shot..You will lose Pa and quite possibly ,as well as, Ohio...As a dem it's nice to sit back and enjoy seeing the repugs beat the crap out of each other..

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 25, 2006 12:31 PM | Report abuse

The numbers of posters living in electoral fanatsyland have been reduced to two -- bhoomes and KOZ. As bad as he was, even VIVABUSH has the sense not to come here and spew stuff like them.

Honestly guys (bhoomes/KOZ). Get a clue.

Posted by: Gaithersburg, MD | September 25, 2006 12:30 PM | Report abuse

"Before I know the facts" - that's rich. you compare a typo to unquestionable acceptance of any "classified" document that the NYT decides to print. Is the whole document printed? Are there caveats included? Was it a draft version? What data was it based upon? no questions like this from the lackey press or the evermore gullible nutroots. It is clearly based on faulty mathematical analysis so I do not put much stock in it. I am amused now that OBL is dead and gas prices are down that the Dems have lost every puny idea they thought would win an election for them. I have an idea - raise taxes. that verity will get you the votes you crave - although not enough to actually win an election. The Dems - sinking into a quigmire of taxes and surrender. No Sale!

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Good points by JimD and Judge C. Crater above - Also, anteresting obituary in the news last week (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/09/20/AR2006092001904.html?nav=emailpage) on Pham Xuan An, former corresponedent for Time magazine and spy for North Viet Nam. [One of his mentors in Saigon was eventual CIA chief William Colby.]

" 'Mr. Pham never expressed regret about his role, biographer (Larry) Berman said.

'He didn't believe we belonged in his country. He was a nationalist,' (biographer Larry) Berman said. 'He felt this is something the Vietnamese had to settle between themselves. To put it another way, he thought America got in the way of Vietnam's history.' "

We still haven't learned that almost all Nationalists think the same thing; and that almost all people are Nationalists when it comes to their own country.

Whenever our Armed Forces go into any country, we need a strategy which let's us get out of the way quickly.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | September 25, 2006 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Only a delusional Dem could think that it is appropriate to directly compare a two term Pres( 8 years )with a new Pres (8 months)changing parties in power. Have you not heard of all the chances Clinton had to actually "get" OBL? He couldn't make a decision, maybe he should have taken another poll. that is the kind of leadership we are glad to be rid of. doing something unpopular is part of the job on occasion. Defending this prevaricator (as decided by a jury, not the press) is what has led you Dems down this road of defeat. when will you learn? we are perfectly happy to let you kill yourselves in elections with these views, but we stop when it comes to letting us all get killed in the process. One tough question and he breaks all victim on us. how typical. It's always someone else's fault with him.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 12:09 PM | Report abuse

"I heard they are renaming that venerated Bush education failure, now called "no child left behind"..

Now it's Bush's "No crony left behind..." education policy.

Jeb, I tell you as a Republican that happens to be a former high school math teacher last year that the "No Child Left Behind Act" was re-named a while ago by educators. It's known as the "No Child Left Standing Act." Why democrats don't capitalize on this by using negative ads, I don't know?

Posted by: reason | September 25, 2006 12:06 PM | Report abuse

KOZ,

Its the NIE report not NIC. NIE stands for National Intelligence Estimate. It is a report created by the Intelligence Community (IC). Before you make such accusations, make sure you know the facts. You will just embarrass yourself.

Posted by: Political Junkie | September 25, 2006 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I wonder what the NIC used as a control group for this study? Is it possible that the cause/effect scenario they depict is a natural result of something else? Probably used the same non-evidence science they used for Al Gore's movie. Getting sillier by the day. After clinton's pack of lies and getting one decent question from a journalist (finally, first time ever)it is evident the Dems are going kooky from the lack of any vision for the future. Slick willie is obesessed all right - with torturing history into something all you conspiracy nuts can work with. but it just didn't happen. Rs don't sell out their country for political gain. Lexis/nexis shows clinton is lying (again). Maybe he just can't help himself. but why do the rest of you follow suit? wipe that smirk off your face.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

GWB's first 270 days: no attacks on OBL. You can't attack Clinton for not doing enough while still defending a president who did NOTHING for three-quarters of a year.

The harsh reality is that without 9/11 GWB would have continued to do nothing about Al Queda. Over-attention to Iraq = under-attention to Al Queda. And the NIE report shows that the chickens are coming home to roost once more.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I heard they are renaming that venerated Bush education failure, now called "no child left behind"..

Now it's Bush's "No crony left behind..." education policy.

Sems the Bush administration has spent much more time and money finding political allies instead of industry experts to manage their education program.

Kind of like they did in the Iraq war and after Katrina.

Put a Texan in the White House and you'll have one in every US govt. office in the world. Just look at the list of foreign diplomats we currently depend on.

Most all of em' talk with a drawl.

Posted by: JEP | September 25, 2006 11:47 AM | Report abuse

"Just how large is the class of Republicans who would willingly abandon the rules of democracy in order to keep control of their republic?"

Seriously, that is the question of the year. How many Republicans actually believe Hillary and the Democrats are "evil," so it is OK to cheat in order to beat them?

HYPOCRITES!

And F&B you are absolutely right, the NIC assessment is the biggest story of the season, and its getting buried over the weekend MSM news cycle. That is the only time and place to "state the obvious" without much consequence.

Posted by: JEP | September 25, 2006 11:46 AM | Report abuse

"You blew the election when you morons nominated such a polarizing and extreme candidate."

That was the deal Blackwell made for fixing the 2004 election. In their hubris, some of them even assumed Mr. Ken would waltz right in.

Shame on ANYONE who claims to be a patriot and votes for Blackwell. The 33% who still support Blackwell are all, down to the person, election fraud enablers.

They define their own party's hypocrisy by claiming democracy and voting for Blackwell. They want their party to control government, win or lose, in these elections.

They know the sad truth, they are not that naive. They know "the fix" was in, and in many cases, they are part and parcel of that devil's bargain from 2004.

Just how large is the class of Republicans who would willingly abandon the rules of democracy in order to keep control of their republic?

When do these modern-day "loyalists" finally learn, our rights can only be maintained when the REAL public, that Great American Majority, is represented in our daily government, instead of billionaires with strictly economic interests?

Posted by: JEP | September 25, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

How about that slick willie. wagging his finger and inventing a legacy again. now I see how you conspiracy nuts get your point of view - it comes right from the top. so clinton fired a cruise missile once (right after returning from his Monica deposition) but everyone thought it was bad so in his magnificant leadership style, opted to refrain from firing anymore. Instead he took a poll on where to vacation. Poor Bill. that shrew of a wife has left him no option but to spin up some sort of legacy wherein he didn't fiddle while america fell victim to terror. didn't do anything about AIDS. turned the CIA, FBI and State Dept into hollowed out hideouts for his cronys - note all the classified info leaking out. Bill - we didn't believe your finger-wagging lies about the intern and we won't rewrite history to make you look tough on terror. Keep it up and you will be as laughable as Carter - imagine the humor in that.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 25, 2006 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Drindl: one final point. Our invasion of Iraq has turned it into a situation where all that stands between it and becoming another Afghanistan is US troops. Their absence would spark a civil war of monumental proportions (>100,000 dead) and repartitioning of Iraq like that of Pakistan in 1947. See below for all the fun that entails. Only after that would the resemblance to Afghanistan become pronounced. Thanks GWB for inserting our troops between a rock and a hard place.

" 'Leave India to God. If that is too much, then leave her to anarchy.' --Gandhi, May 1942

The partition of India left both India and Pakistan devastated. The process of partition had claimed many lives in the riots. Many others were raped and looted. Women, especially, were used as instruments of power by the Hindus and the Muslims; 'ghost trains' full of severed breasts of women would arrive in each of the newly-born countries from across the borders.

15 million refugees poured across the borders to regions completely foreign to them, for though they were Hindu or Muslim, their identity had been embedded in the regions where there ancestors were from. Not only was the country divided, but so were the provinces of Punjab and Bengal, divisions which caused catastrophic riots and claimed the lives of Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs alike.

Many years after the partition, the two nations are still trying to heal the wounds left behind by this incision to once-whole body of India. Many are still in search of an identity and a history left behind beyond an impenetrable boundary. The two countries started of with ruined economies and lands and without an established, experienced system of government. They lost many of their most dynamic leaders, such as Gandhi, Jinnah and Allama Iqbal, soon after the partition. Pakistan had to face the separation of Bangladesh in 1971. India and Pakistan have been to war twice since the partition and they are still deadlocked over the issue of possession of Kashmir. The same issues of boundaries and divisions, Hindu and Muslim majorities and differences, still persist in Kashmir."

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Bhoomes, I thought you finally came back to reality with your concession re: Blackwell.

Then you go back to smoking the green stuff when you say you will win Washington, New Jersey and Maryland. First, Washington is done - Cantwell wins easy. Next, you will not win both New Jersey and Maryland. I am starting to think that you may sqeak out New Jersey but, the dems will keep Maryland.

Also, here in Ohio, you better start facing reality, DeWine is in deep trouble. When the incumbent is down in every poll this late in the game, he has major problems. Look at the Columbus Dispatch poll that came out over the weekend. Blackwell is dragging down the whole Repub ticket.

You blew the election when you morons nominated such a polarizing and extreme candidate. It is similar to the dems nominating Kucinich as for Gov. Bhoomes, face the facts, it will be a long year for Repubs in Ohio (and throughout the country.)

I told you months ago that Blackwell was cooked...you just didn't believe me.

Posted by: Lenny | September 25, 2006 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Janice Brown -- oh right, another activist judge who's dying to burn the Constitution:

'A review of California Supreme Court Justice Janice Rogers Brown's record to date raises serious questions and grave concerns about her persistent and disturbing hostility to affirmative action, civil rights, the rights of people with disabilities, workers' rights, and criminal rights. In addition, Brown has often been the lone justice to dissent on the California Supreme Court, illustrating that her judicial philosophy is outside the mainstream. Not only does she show an inability to dispassionately review cases, her opinions are based on extremist ideology that ignores judicial precedent, including that set by the U.S. Supreme Court.'

Posted by: louisa | September 25, 2006 10:56 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes - I'll go along with this absurd logic that somehow McGaverick is going to come back from DUI-gate and Steele will convince Maryland voter he's actually one of them (after comparing stem cells to nazi experimentation).

Santorum is behind by 6-10 points and his unfavorables are higher than his favs. DeWine is behind 4-6. Chafee is a little behind. Harold Ford is running neck-in-neck for Frist's seat(running the best campaign in the country). Allen's foot-in-mouth has made it neck-in-neck. Missouri and Arizona could still be within striking distance (although I wouldn't count on them). Even if Dems only split the the neck-in-neck or ahead races, they still split even or pick up a seat. Dems won't win the Senate, but I think they pick up two or three seats.

Posted by: Zach | September 25, 2006 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Easy Question Irish Curse: We will pick up Washington, New Jersey and Maryland but will lose Montana, giving us a net gain of two seats, which we will need to get Justice Janice Rogers Brown to the Supreme Court where she belongs.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 25, 2006 10:39 AM | Report abuse

JimD: I very much agree with "I would have ads highlighting the NIE evaluation and calling attention to the resurgent Taliban in Afghanistan. The Democrats cannot shy away from discussing these issues and must be forceful in presenting their views."

I have been thinking exactly the same thing in terms of mounting a response to the GOP Big Lies ad that constantly runs on our local TV stations. Such obvious disinformation needs to be countered or else the kool-aid drinkers will turn out in all their unthinking subservience to Karl Rove. At the very least the fact that these situations are not at all as clear as they make them to be (e.g., Al Quada in Iraq was a non-issue before we invaded; now they are a major player, thanks to GWB) needs to be advanced.

The extreme ambiguity of the statement "George Bush has made us safer" needs to be better publicized. Doubt in the minds of the GOP faithful is a powerful weapon.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 10:30 AM | Report abuse

George Allen --scary racist psycho:

'Shelton played football with Allen in the 1972 and 1973 seasons, according to the team media guides from those years. Shelton remembers Allen's attitudes about race surfacing early in their relationship. At one point, Shelton says, Allen nicknamed him "Wizard," after United Klans imperial wizard Robert Shelton. "He asked me if I was related at all," Shelton remembers. "I knew of that name, and I said absolutely not." Several former teammates confirmed that Shelton's team nickname was "Wizard," though no one contacted by Salon could confirm firsthand knowledge of the handle's origin. "Everyone called me 'Wizard' that knows me from those days," said Shelton. "My nickname stuck."

Shelton said he also remembers a disturbing deer hunting trip with Allen on land that was owned by the family of Billy Lanahan, a wide receiver on the team. After they had killed a deer, Shelton said he remembers Allen asking Lanahan where the local black residents lived. Shelton said Allen then drove the three of them to that neighborhood with the severed head of the deer. "He proceeded to take the doe's head and stuff it into a mailbox," Shelton said.'

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 10:20 AM | Report abuse

JimD- as always, I think your arguments are extremely well-informed and rational. You sir, would make a fine representative, in my estimation!

I believe I read last week that the Iraq Parliment had been discussing the idea of at least a semi-autonomous region [like that which the Kurds have] for the Shia.

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 9:53 AM | Report abuse

--Rumsfeld is so extraordinarily, spectacularly unfit that he is creating a rebellion amongst the military:

"WASHINGTON - Retired military officers on Monday are expected to bluntly accuse Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld of bungling the war in Iraq, saying U.S. troops were sent to fight without the best equipment and that critical facts were hidden from the public.

"I believe that Secretary Rumsfeld and others in the administration did not tell the American people the truth for fear of losing support for the war in Iraq," retired Maj. Gen. John R. S. Batiste said in remarks prepared for a hearing by the Senate Democratic Policy Committee.

A second witness, retired Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton, is expected to assess Rumsfeld as "incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically ...."

"Mr. Rumsfeld and his immediate team must be replaced or we will see two more years of extraordinarily bad decision-making," said his testimony prepared for the hearing, to be held six weeks before the Nov. 7 midterm elections in which the war is a central issue."

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 9:47 AM | Report abuse

drindl, Judge Crater

I have been making the point in here for quite some time that the war in Iraq is a distraction from the war on terror. I also believe that too many Democrats are uncomfortable campaigning on national security issues. Many of them seem to want to change the subject. The Dems do have some highly credible on national security candidates like Jim Webb in Virginia and Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania along with a number of other veterans running for Congress. There are a number of centrists who are desperately looking for a realistic approach to counter terrorism and for some fiscal sanity in our government. However, simply criticizing the many failings of the Bush administration does not present a coherent national security strategy. An analysis of the polls after the 2004 election reveals that enough moderate voters to tip the election were disenchanted with Bush but ended up voting for him based on the national security issue because Kerry failed to provide a coherent alternative (the Swift Boat smears did not help either). I think Joe Biden's plan for highly autonomous Sunni, Shiite and Kurd regions in a federal Iraq is a great starting point. The Dems need to change the argument from "cut and run" to a new strategy. Address the failings in the intelligence community uncovered by the 9/11 Commission that still have not been corrected. Argue for a doubling of Special Ops forces (I believe Bob Casey is advocating that). Forcefully argue that the war against terror will mostly be fought with intelligence, law enforcement and special ops forces. Kerry was right - it is similar to our struggles against drug lords. We are rarely dealing with state actors. The recent Israeli incursion into Lebanon shows the limits of a conventional military response to terrorists. They killed a lot of innocent civilians, destroyed a great deal of Lebanese infrastructure and failed to neutralize Hizbollah. And the terrorist groups who pose the greatest threat to the US are generally far less concentrated in a given area than Hizbollah is in Lebanon. There will be cases where a conventional military response is necessary - Afghanistan is the prime example and the Bushies have botched that effort by diverting resources to Iraq. I would have ads highlighting the NIE evaluation and calling attention to the resurgent Taliban in Afghanistan. The Democrats cannot shy away from discussing these issues and must be forceful in presenting their views. People are desperate for a change but many are wary of the Democrats on national security issues. If I were a Democratic congressional candidate I would campaign on national security issues. My platform would be -

- a new strategy for Iraq (along the Biden plan lines)

- carry out the intelligence reforms advocated by the 9/11 commission. Build an American equivalent of Britain's MI5.

- port security - badly neglected by Bush

- fix FEMA, streamline the Homeland Security Dept.

- control the deficit, point out how our current fiscal insanity leaves us vulnerable to the Chinese and other foreign investors who hold Treasury bonds.

I would also ridicule the Republican argument that the Democrats have a pre-9/11 mindset and do not understand the enemy. The Republicans are the ones living with a pre-9/11 mindset - a very outdated one at that, a 1938 mindset. The Nazi comparisons are ludicrous and obscure the real threat. The Bushies lump all terrorists into one group as if they were a coherent organization. That is simply not true. Al Qaeda is not like Hizbollah or Hamas or Chechen rebels, except that all use terrorist tactics. Trumpeting the supposed threat of a "caliphate" stretching from the Middle East to Indonesia just confers prestige on bin Laden among his twisted followers. The insurgents fighting each other in Iraq will not start fighting in our streets if we leave Iraq (although I am not advocating unilateral withdrawal because we have a moral responsibility not to leave Iraq in the condition it is in as a result of our ill-conceived invasion).

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 25, 2006 9:46 AM | Report abuse

Chris,

Seriously, no caveat next to a poll conducted over a two week timeframe by Indiana State University's Sociology Research Lab? College kids doing polls? Small wonder it "jibed" with the Democratic poll. Hopefully Mr. Ellsworth believes those polls as much as you seem to. Dems won't pick up any seats if they put any faith in "polls" like that.

Posted by: everlast00 | September 25, 2006 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Not too many comments on the substance of Chris's news. I don't doubt Strickland is ahead and perhaps Brown has the upper hand. Statewide polls have a long history, I wonder about these congressional race polls, what is their historical record?

Posted by: JoMama | September 25, 2006 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Pretty simple for us..GET OUT AND VOTE PEOPLE!! If enough of us dems actually follow through and do just that we'll be just fine...bhoomes:: what 2 seats do you think the repugs will pick up??

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 25, 2006 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Even some hardcore righties are seeing the truth... this is from parapundit, waaay rightwing...

'We are going to need far better border security and tougher visa policies as the threat grows. It is time to put an end to the policies of Immigration, Imperialism, and Insolvency as Daniel Larison calls them.

Here's the Los Angeles Times coverage. I am expecting some reader to take me to task for using very harsh rhetoric about George W. Bush. But Duby and Cheney are either lying or deluded when they claim the Iraq invasion has made Americans safer.'

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Judge, it's funny because what I was trying to post was a clip from a WaPo article -- guess they think their own stuff is unfit.

But as far as the NIE-- I think at this point, people are not going to be moved one way or the other by the report. You've got your one-third or so of the public that is hardcore republican junky, your koolaid mainliners. Nothng fact or reality-based will change their minds --they are too deep into the cult. When faced with facts, they simply put their hands over their ears and scream 'liberals suck'. Hopeless.

Unfortunately, most american's grasp of foreign affairs is monumentally slight and misinformed. I doubt people still know about the troops in Mecca. It wasn't just the fact that they were in Saudi, but that they were based inthe holy cities. But bin Ladin, at least in what I've read, was cheesed about not just that, but 100 years of american and european colonialism for the purprse of stealing their oil. And of course, Bush Senior was the prime US enabler of that venture in our most recent past.

As I have said before, the fact that Bush Senior had been scheduled with have lunch with Osama's brother at the Waldorf Astoria on 9/11 in itself speaks volumes.

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 9:08 AM | Report abuse

"RICHMOND, Va. -- The Rev. Jerry Falwell acknowledged on Sunday saying that if Hillary Rodham Clinton were the Democrats' presidential nominee in 2008, it would motivate conservative evangelical Christians to oppose her more than if the devil himself were running."

Har-dee-har-har. Proof that Falwell and his supporters are about as Christian as Osama Bin Laden.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Drindl: no problems for me so far.

I second F&B's comment. When the GOP's national campaign strategy seems to be composed of "TERRORISTS ARE OUT TO GET YOU AND THOSE DEMS WANT TO CUT AND RUN" isn't the fact that what Bush has achieved runs counter to that strategy worthy of political analysis? Will the NIE report penetrate into the mind of the voting public or will they continue to accept the idea that 1,000 year Iraq war is going to make them safer?

Also, I'm not sure why the NIE report is such a surprise. Wasn't one of OBL's primary reasons for attacking us in the 90's the fact that we still had armed forces in the ME (on Saudi Arabian soil) following the first Gulf War? In fact, you could point to that conflict (and another Bush, GHB) as the primary cause of 9/11.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 25, 2006 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Former congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman:
Who would have ever thought that elected representative of the US would be afraid to leave the country because they have committed war crimes:

'The administration has apparently decided to secure immunity from prosecution through legislation. Under cover of the controversy involving the military tribunals and whether they could use hearsay or coerced evidence, the administration is trying to pardon itself, hoping that no one will notice. The urgent timetable has to do more than anything with the possibility that the next Congress may be controlled by Democrats, who will not permit such a provision to be adopted.

Creating immunity retroactively for violating the law sets a terrible precedent. The president takes an oath of office to uphold the Constitution; that document requires him to obey the laws, not violate them. A president who knowingly and deliberately violates U.S. criminal laws should not be able to use stealth tactics to immunize himself from liability, and Congress should not go along.

There's always travel abroad to consider. Unless they can get the whole world to change their interpretation of Geneva, isn't that a concern? It would seem the administration itself is at least a tad worried about legal liability for violating Geneva domestically, so has this crossed its legal minds? This from Newsweek would suggest such concerns are not abstract.'

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 8:51 AM | Report abuse

I keep getting blocked from posting? Anyone else getting censored?

Posted by: drindl | September 25, 2006 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Okay, I'm willing to throw in the towell on Blackwell, but I am extremely confident Dewine will win and the republicans will end up picking up 2 seats in the senate. I got a little upset with George Allen for getting angry over a question, but he sure can't match Clinton, When will he ever grow up? If the best the dems can do is offer us the Clintons, it tells you their party is all but dead.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 25, 2006 7:56 AM | Report abuse

Economist Bill Peirce is the only candidate for Ohio gov worth a damn:

http://peirceforohio.com/

Posted by: Stubby | September 25, 2006 7:39 AM | Report abuse

The only thing that can save the GOP in Ohio is a repeat of the '04 crimes in the state.

http://intrepidliberaljournal.blogspot.com

Posted by: Intrepid Liberal Journal | September 25, 2006 6:34 AM | Report abuse

You're sitting in Kentucky analyzing political races in Ohio? Why waste the effort when you could analyze from DC. Don't tell your editors or they'll have you analyze Oklahoma from Wisconsin.

Posted by: Menlo Bob | September 25, 2006 3:25 AM | Report abuse

Finally a hint of recognition by The Fixers of the political realities facing the Republican party in the midwest.

But the WaPo.com editors still playing Rove's hand by burying what is clearly the most important story of the month:

Spy Agencies Say Iraq War Hurting U.S. Terror Fight

By Karen DeYoung

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/09/23/AR2006092301130.html

Dont get me wrong, im all for Baron Hill beating the tar our of the R incumbent, but is that story or the next one down ("Republican Fortunes Appear to Turn Rosier") REALLY more important the the NIE declaring that Iraq has made terrorism WORSE?

Repeat:

IRAQ HAS MADE TERRORISM WORSE.

That is now a definitive, factual statement.

"It's a very candid assessment," one intelligence official said yesterday of the estimate, the first formal examination of global terrorist trends written by the National Intelligence Council since the March 2003 invasion. "It's stating the obvious."

Obvious indeed.

Wake up folks.

Posted by: F&B | September 24, 2006 9:32 PM | Report abuse

If Ken Blackwell is declared the gubernatorial winner (by himself, as he is also in charge of validating the elections in his position as Secretary of State) despite badly trailing in the polls, we will know conclusively that Ohio was stolen in '04. And I know exactly what he'll say: "It was a late rush to the polls by god-fearing church people who pushed me through to victory. Praise Jesus and the Diebold corporation."

Posted by: Jimbob | September 24, 2006 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Re: OH-2

The Shrieky Schmidt is no lady, James:
http://tinyurl.com/864sb

War-Mongering Harpy is more like it...

Posted by: Dee Lilley | September 24, 2006 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Why no mention of OH-2? I don't understand how this can still be ignored...

"The poll, taken Wednesday for WCPO TV, shows Schmidt the choice of the 45 percent of the district's likely voters, with Wulsin the choice of 42 percent. Another 12 percent were undecided.

Because the poll's margin of error is 4.5 percentage points, that means either lady could be leading"

Posted by: James | September 24, 2006 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Ohio is ripe for new progressive ideas; Strickland and Brown are the visionaries that we need.

Posted by: Marc Guthrie | September 24, 2006 8:16 PM | Report abuse

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