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In Governors Races, Dems Still Hold Stronger Hand

The top 5 governors races on today's Line are open-seat contests where the current officeholder is a Republican. Should Democrats win these five races and lose no others this cycle, the party would control 27 governorships nationwide to 23 for Republicans.

2006 Election -- Interactive Map
Interactive Campaign Map: More Election Data and Analysis.

But Democrats face a few serious challenges of their own -- especially in Wisconsin, Maine, Michigan and Oregon -- that could jeopardize their hopes of winning a majority of governor's mansions this fall.

Still, all in all, Democrats seem headed to add somewhere between four and eight governors' offices to their total this fall.

Remember that the No. 1 ranked race is most likely to switch parties. Your kudos and critiques are welcome in the comments section below.

To the Line...

15. Illinois: The Fix just can't bring himself to drop this race from the Line. Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) continues to fight off allegations of ethical improprieties -- the latest involves a $1,500 birthday check written to one of his daughters by a longtime political supporter just days after the supporter's wife got a state job. State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka (R) has taken the issue to the airwaves in hopes of gaining the traction that has eluded her campaign so far. Blagojevich will likely hold on but appears to be sitting on a political powder keg. (Previous ranking: 14)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Blagojevich, Baar Topinka | Illinois Political Profile

14. Nevada: One of the most fascinating subplots of this race is Gov. Kenny Guinn's (R) continued refusal to endorse Rep. Jim Gibbons (R) in the race to replace him. The two men met for several hours last week without resolution. Gibbons has been an outspoken critic of Guinn's support for tax increases to stabilize the state's budget. With or without the Guinn endorsement, Gibbons is favored over state Sen. Dina Titus (D). Republicans have effectively portrayed Titus as a Las Vegas liberal and kept Gibbons's tendency toward off-beat comments to a minimum. A recent Mason-Dixon poll showed Gibbons with a 45 percent to 36 percent lead over Titus. (Previous ranking: 13)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Gibbons, Titus | Nevada Political Profile

13. Rhode Island: Two recent independent polls paint very different pictures of the state of this race. The first, conducted by Mason-Dixon, showed Gov. Don Carcieri (R) ahead of Lt. Gov. Charlie Fogarty 50 percent to 34 percent. A USA Today/Gallup survey had Carcieri up by just one point -- 47 percent to 46 percent. Average the two and Carcieri's lead is 8.5 points, which sounds about right to us. (Previous ranking: 10)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Carcieri, Fogarty | Rhode Island Political Profile

12. Oregon: After a several month absence from The Line, Gov. Ted Kulongoski (D) reappears as both Democrats and Republicans acknowledge he is in for a tight race against 2002 candidate Ron Saxton (R). Two recent developments caught us by surprise. First, in their most recent campaign finance reports, Saxton revealed that his campaign raised $3.5 million to Kulongoski's $1.6 million and spent $2.9 million to the incumbent's $639,000. The second was a poll from Riley Research that showed Saxton leading Kulongoski 39 percent to 37 percent. Democrats push back that the governor leads by single digits in private surveys. Even if that's true, this is going to be a close race. (Previous ranking: N/A)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Kulongoski, Saxton | Oregon Political Profile

11. Minnesota: At the start of the cycle, Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) was not on anyone's list of top targets. Young and ambitious, Pawlenty was seen as a potential national star for the GOP. He may well end up there, but state Attorney General Mike Hatch (D) is running a surprisingly competitive race against Pawlenty, benefitting from the sour mood of state voters about Republicans nationally. Hatch has spent much of the last two weeks polishing his own image, which even Democrats privately admitted needed a bit of a spit shine. Pawlenty has been trying to cast Hatch as a favoring a tax increase on middle class voters. Polling shows the race nip and tuck. (Previous ranking: 12)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Hatch, Pawlenty | Minnesota Political Profile

10. Michigan: After enduring a rough summer, Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D) has steadied her reelection bid as a slew of recent polling shows her with a mid-single-digit margin over businessman Dick DeVos. Granholm has scored points by mining Devos's business background -- including his decision to open a factory in China. Democrats still worry that the massive personal spending by DeVos, which has financed a sophisticated voter identification and get-out-the-vote operation, will allow him to outperform on Election Day. (Previous ranking: 7)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: DeVos, Granholm | Michigan Political Profile

9. Maine: Gov. John Baldacci is in a tough spot. He has rejected public financing in the campaign and is nearing the $404,000 fundraising mark that would trigger matching funds for his three opponents -- state Sen. Chandler Woodcock (R), Pat LaMarche (Green) and Barbara Merrill (I). Baldacci could decide to halt his fundraising just short of the ceiling and hope he can starve out his opponents. But the Republican Governors Association would likely keep running ads in the state, which would trigger matching funds for the other candidates -- not a bad deal considering that the more votes Lamarche and Merrill win, the smaller percentage of the vote Woodcock needs to oust Baldacci. A fascinating study in the unintended consequences of public financing of elections. (Previous ranking: 11)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Baldacci, Woodcock | Maine Political Profile

8. Wisconsin: Republicans are feeling more optimistic about Rep. Mark Green's (R) chances of ousting Gov. Jim Doyle on Nov. 7. A recent Research 2000 poll shows why: Doyle led 48 percent to 42 percent, but that margin was down from the 49 percent to 40 percent lead the incumbent held in the same poll a month ago. Forty-eight percent of the sample said Doyle was doing either an excellent or good job as governor while 42 percent said he was doing a fair or poor job. It remains to be seen whether the Foley scandal currently enveloping House Republicans will stymie Green's momentum. He returned a campaign contribution from Foley but so far has resisted calls from Doyle to call for House Speaker Dennis Hastert's resignation. (Previous ranking: 9)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Doyle, Green | Wisconsin Political Profile

7. Maryland: Despite several public polls that show Baltimore Mayor Martin O'Malley (D) leading Gov. Bob Ehrlich (R), Democrats remain only cautiously optimistic about their chances of knocking off the incumbent. It's the once bitten, twice shy mentality. Democrats assumed Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (D) would roll to victory over Ehrlich in 2002. Her loss has spooked many Democrats in the state who regularly caution us not to underestimate Ehrlich's appeal. We won't. (Previous ranking: 8)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Ehrlich, O'Malley | Maryland Political Profile

6. Iowa: If there is any governor's race in the country affected by the Foley fallout, it will be this one. Secretary of State Chet Culver (D) has spent much of the campaign seeking to tie Rep. Jim Nussle (R) to the perceived failings of Washington, a message that is reinforced by this latest Capitol Hill brouhaha. Outgoing Gov. Tom Vilsack (D) said that Nussle was likely aware of the Foley situation before it became public and criticized him for not condemning it sooner. Polling -- both public and private -- shows this race within the margin of error. (Previous ranking: 6)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Culver, Nussle | Iowa Political Profile

5. Arkansas: It speaks to the vulnerability of the top four races on The Line that the Arkansas contest is ranked fifth. A recent independent poll showed state Attorney General Mike Beebe (D) with a strong 53 percent to 35 percent lead over former Rep. Asa Hutchinson (R). Hutchinson and some GOP-backed independent groups are trying to portray Beebe as a liberal on taxes, but after ten years of Republican Gov. Mike Huckabee voters in Arkansas seem ready to make a change at the top. This is a longshot Republican hold. (Previous ranking: 4)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Beebe, Hutchinson | Arkansas Political Profile

4. Massachusetts: Former Assistant U.S. Attorney General Deval Patrick's (D) surprisingly strong primary victory puts Democrats in very good position to win back the governor's office for the first time since 1990. A poll conducted in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 19 primary showed Patrick with a 25-point lead over Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey (R). Patrick has since been forced to apologize for not fully disclosing his advocacy on behalf of a convicted rapist, a story that should bring down those sky-high numbers somewhat. But barring some sort of collapse on Patrick's part, this is a race he should win. (Previous ranking: 5)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Democrats, Republicans | Massachusetts Political Profile

3. Colorado: We've been waiting for some signs of life from Rep. Bob Beauprez's (R) campaigns for months now. Beauprez is slugging away at former Denver District Attorney Bill Ritter (D) over his record on immigration, but that issue has failed to substantially close the gap between the two men. A Mason-Dixon poll released recently had Ritter with a 50 percent to 35 percent lead over Beauprez. As troubling for Republicans, Ritter had a healthy 46 percent to 32 percent favorable/unfavorable score while Beauprez stood at 32 favorable/40 unfavorable. (Previous ranking: 3)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Beauprez, Ritter | Colorado Political Profile

2. Ohio: This one is over. No matter what Secretary of State Ken Blackwell (R) and his Republican allies throw at Rep. Ted Strickland (D), nothing seems to stick. Outgoing GOP Gov. Bob Taft's ethical problems are the prime reason for this teflon effect, as voters have made up their minds that Republicans have sacrificed the public trust and it's time to give Democrats a chance. Strickland enters the final stretch with $4 million more than Blackwell to spend on the race and a double-digit lead in the polls. (Previous ranking: 2)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Blackwell, Strickland | Ohio Political Profile

1. New York: Former Assemblyman John Faso (R) has as much chance of beating state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer (D) as the New York Yankees have of winning the World Series this year. As in, none. (Previous ranking: 1)

Candidate Profiles and Campaign Links: Faso, Spitzer | New York Political Profile

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 10, 2006; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Governors , The Line  
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Next: Senate Dems Take to Virginia Airwaves

Comments

I wouldn't say Alaska has slipped away from the Democrats. Recent polls have the gap closing, and a new (independent) poll out today says it's a dead heat, with Palin and Knowles tied at 43 and Halcro and undecideds taking up the rest.
Palin is making lots of cringe-inducing mistakes on the campaign trail. I had thought long ago that she had this election sewed up, but the political scene here is very unpredictable. Some experts say the race will come down to the rural Native vote, which in the past has been heavily for Knowles. Not me. Right now, I don't know what to say. I've been so wrong so many times in the past that I'm just not going to make predictions anymore, or at least not many :)

Posted by: alaskan | October 24, 2006 4:27 PM | Report abuse

The state that sticks out to me the most is Mass. I really thought Healey would make this a real race, being that Romney is the RGA chairman and all. I'm surprised Patrick has this race sewed up already, or at least it seems that he does. It also is a little surprising that Alaska has slipped away from the democrats. Sarah Palin is obviously going to win this election. I'm also surprised at New York Republicans. Come on, Faso and Spencer vs. Spitzer and Clinton! Spitzer gets 70% or better and Clinton gets 60% or better. Weld would have made a great candidate. I can't believe the shut down of Pirro, either. What a year this will be in New York for Dems. Regaining the governorship, Lt. gov. and prolly a few house seats.

Someone earlier mentioned how democratic Colordo has became. I don't think so! It's just that Beauprez is no gov. Owens. Just b/c they won an open US senate seat, and now have a great chance at an open gov's. race that doesn't mean it's turning Democratic. Look at the candidates! In 04' it was a poor Hispanic that grew up in a large family, worked hard and honored family values to raise up to where he is. Pete Coors runs a billion dollar beer company which made it's billions by getting people loaded. This doesn't exactly excite the conservative electorate. Everyone is just retired, like 04', or is term limited like Owens this year. Word is that Wayne Allard is retiring in 08'. This again leaves a senate seat open. But Owens will be a good candidate. Never the less, Beauprez isn't through here in 06'. He's prolly more conservative than Colorodo. However, the state went for Bush in 04' and I wouldn't be surprised if Beauprez wins this year. He'll have to demonize Ritter, which he is at work at right now. It will be competitive til the end.

Posted by: reason | October 11, 2006 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I think the Dems will win majority of Governor's races this year, but they are going to lose either Michigan or Wisconsin not BOTH, I see Republicans holding most of the states in the South like SC, AL, GA, FL and Dems holding TN. I think election 2006 is going to be good for Democrats, they will win the House and Governorships and keep a razor thin Republican majority in the senate

Posted by: Michael | October 11, 2006 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I think the Dems will win majority of Governor's races this year, but they are going to lose either Michigan or Wisconsin not BOTH, I see Republicans holding most of the states in the South like SC, AL, GA, FL and Dems holding TN. I think election 2006 is going to be good for Democrats, they will win the House and Governorships and keep a razor thin Republican majority

Posted by: Michael | October 11, 2006 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Finally an update on Alaska.

Looks as though my instincts were right about keeping this one on the list.

Rasmussen
10/9
Knowles (D) 40%
Pallin (R) 47%

Posted by: RMill | October 11, 2006 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Uh..bhoomes

Already down a full brigade. Large land borders with both China and South Korea.

Granted we won't likely be invited to stand on the Chinese border but definately stretched thin on the DMZ. South Koreans aren't going to be able to do it on their own.

There was a huge debate in the Pentagon in 2004 when they pulled a briugade out to send to Iraq. This exacft scenario was discussed and ignored.

I'm not an idiot. I know the difference between navy and army. I am also not naive to believe that an effective blockade can be instituted by the navy alone. Apparently, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs agreed.

But thanks for the condescending lecture.

Posted by: RMill | October 11, 2006 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Vote Republican. Its easier than thinking.

Posted by: KAS | October 11, 2006 7:19 AM | Report abuse

no repub has won a state-wide race in oregon in ten plus years??? in that case, who's this crazy guy gordon smith all the kiddies are talking about?

Posted by: david | October 11, 2006 12:03 AM | Report abuse

And to fact check this assertion you need only go to Amazon.com and look Volume 6 up: http://www.amazon.ca/Whitewater-Editorial-Pages-Street-Journal

Amazing. I think that works out to about $10M of taxpayer money/book.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | October 10, 2006 6:22 PM | Report abuse

Media Notes Extra hits it right on the head today:

"At the New Republic, Jonathan Chait sniffs the scent of hypocrisy from a prominent editorial page:

"The other day I was reading a lead editorial in The Wall Street Journal complaining that the Mark Foley scandal had drowned out more substantive matters. 'The war on terror, and Iraq, really are the largest issues in front of the American people,' urged the editors. 'We need a clear reading on that in November, not on the personal ruin of Mark Foley.'

"Upon reading this, my first reaction was to laugh hysterically while pounding the table with my fist. In case you don't get the joke, the Journal editorial page devoted most of the 1990s to fervently hyping up sundry Bill Clinton scandals, from a murky land deal in Arkansas to the firing of the staff of the all-important White House travel office to, of course, Clinton's tawdry sex life. The Journal published so many editorials on these personal scandals that it compiled them into a book, Whitewater, that reached a staggering 541 pages. Then it proceeded to write enough subsequent scandal editorials to fill up five more books of comparable length. Now, though, it wants an earnest forum on the issues. To which I say: ha, ha, ha.""

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | October 10, 2006 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Depressed but not surprised to see Oregon show up on the list. Kulongoski is in trouble -- he did nothing during his term to secure his base, and while he has tried during the campaign to shore up the left, it comes across as phony.

Saxton, who was not the nominee in 2002, has run a very well-funded, aggressive campaign. He is running to the right, hitting hard on illegal immigration and no more funding for schools, which surprises me since Oregon elections are won in the middle (one reason no Republican has won a statewide race in 10+ years is because they insist on running to the right). But I think as a pro-choice Portland lawyer, he feels the need to shore up the conservative base.

If Kulongoski can't generate any enthusiasm among Dems, Saxton's strategy just might work.

Posted by: AJ in OR | October 10, 2006 4:21 PM | Report abuse

RMILL with all due respect I believe you should stick will your polls and not military matters of which you know little. Talking about a naval blockade not an army blockade. Two different branches of the military. The navy is not streched thin. Unless you dems get in power and start cutting the Navy to 100 ships. PS: I saw Bush 1 had an Aircraft carrier named after him, the largest ship in the Navy. What tugboat does Clinton have named after him.

Posted by: bhoomes | October 10, 2006 4:20 PM | Report abuse

KOZ -- I don't think Clinton was anything approaching perfect on domestic or foreign policy issues and I had no more problem saying that when he was in office than I do now. Contrast that with the view of most republicans - including you generally, though not always - who COMPLETELY refuse to discuss how the actions and inactions of this administration have failed to make us safer or more prosperous.

With respect to foreign policy, the Bush administration didn't get tough with North Korea over the last 6 years. It DID NOTHING. There are lots of ways to engage diplomatically which don't include bilateral talks, which I actually tend to agree are a poor idea under these circumstances. The Bush administration didn't pursue them, in large measure b/c it was irrationally focused on Iraq from September 12th onward. Similarly, our focus on Iraq has led us to REDUCE troop levels in Afghanistan, where the Taliban is threatening to regain control and the opium production is sky rocketing again.

Is any of that a record of success? Because that's all a product of the last 6 years. So is the failure to adopt the recommendations of the 9-11 commission on such fundamental issues as protecting our nuclear and energy infrastructures and our ports. Would you care to discuss ANY of that? Because, again, that is the GOP's RECORD with respect to the war on terror rather than their RHETORIC on the topic. Unsurprisingly, there is a sharp divide between the two.

Posted by: Colin | October 10, 2006 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Ha, someone was claiming they used to live in DC at the corner of "Connecticut Blvd" and "Military Rd." Anyone who ever lived in DC or is remotely familiar with Northwest would know it is Connecticut Avenue. All of the states are Avenues (with the one missing state--Virginia Avenue). Unfortunately people like to pretend they lived somewhere.

That aside, the MD race should be lower on the list for likelyhood of changing parties to maybe 9 or 10 imo. O'Malley recently came out saying he is not opposed to raising taxes and could not explain how he would pay for his lofty promises. He's losing a lot of traction and Ehrlich's been catching up in all the polls until the Gallup phone poll, which has numbers claiming a 5 point swing overnight...right.

The reality of the O'Malley-Ehrlich race is that it will boil down to turnout. Contrary to national trends, Republicans in Maryland are very energized as well as a result of the liberally-controlled state legislature trying to push through some extremely liberal items.

Ehrlich presides over a state with a growing and vibrant economy where unemployment is well below the national average. He successfully navigated the deficit waters a few years ago and has big-name projects like the ICC in the works that Democrats promised for years. Ehrlich is running far stronger than he did in 2002 in Dem-dominated counties of Montgomery and PG.

Top-of-the-ticket, incumbent, no major gaffes, and the only thing MD-wise Ehrlich has against him is national sentiment towards Republicans. O'Malley's rhetoric pretty much says just that.

Speaking of which O'Malley is basically bankrupt and has turned to the SEIU east to run ads for him and a 527. He apparently can not afford to run his own ads until the week before the election and doesn't want Ehrlich to dominate the airwaves.

Posted by: Bryan | October 10, 2006 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Last I saw:

Survey USA
9/19

Wulsin (D) 42%
Schmidt (R)* 45%

Posted by: RMill | October 10, 2006 3:56 PM | Report abuse

How is :Mean Jean" faring in her campaign in Ohio?

Posted by: An Ashamed R | October 10, 2006 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I really doubt that even Bloody Betty will win in the political climate here in Ohio. Marc Dann is a very good candidate but I think Betty has a better chance to win than any other candidate running for statewide office. It should be a giant win for Democrats in Ohio this year.

Posted by: Larry | October 10, 2006 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I really doubt that even Bloody Betty will win in the political climate here in Ohio. Marc Dann is a very good candidate but I think Betty has a better chance to win than any other candidate running for statewide office. It should be a giant win for Democrats in Ohio this year.

Posted by: Larry | October 10, 2006 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Bhoomes, don't throw me in with all of the far left on this blog, I am a moderate and vote for members of both parties however, admittedly, I lean democrat.

I must tell however, besides for the state rep candidate in my district, i will vote straight democratic ticket this year. I think Strickland wins by at least 12% and I think he will turn out to be a tremendous gov. Regarding the Senate race, Sherrod Brown will win by 2%.

DeWine is an irrelevant member of the Senate and deserves to lose. Sherrod Brown is liberal but, at least he would question a number of the Bush policies which DeWine does not do.

Hey, Bhoomes, at least you will have Bloody Betty (Montgomery) to root for. She is pathetic.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 10, 2006 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Can US Military handle blockade of North Korea?

Streched thin with deployments in Iraq and Afganastan, crucial elements of US armed forces needed for a full blockade of North Korea would make things very difficult on the Pentagon.

You may remember that a full combat brigade of US troops was redeployed in 2004 from South Korea to Iraq. There are not many combat ready brigades left to cover large scale operations in the pacific theater.

Although the Pentagon has shifted other assets to the pacific theater, mostly long range bomber and stealth attack aircraft and naval assets like aircraft carriers, subs and Aegis cruisers along with anti-missle batteries, a long term blockade will eventually require more troops on the ground.

Also, key intelligence assets like Predator drones, AWACS and precision guided munitions are also in short supply in the Pacific due to deployments in the Middle East.

These were all included in an assessment written for Congress by General Myers, outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs last year. They now seem more relevant in light of the situation in North Korea.

The NATO takover of command and control in Afganastan has not helped to relieve the situation yet and is unlikely to do so for months.

I had written earlier this year that redeploying US troops from Afganastan to Iraq after turning over to NATO would provide up to 10-15000 additional troops to help secure Iraq enough for Iraqi police and military to take over their own security next year and begin US troop withdrawls. It appears that the reequests for troop committments for Afgan operations are going slowly.

Were they not, it may not be feasible that an additional 10-15,000 troops could turn the tide in Iraq at this point. It certainly could not help with the North Korean situation.

And if North Korea is not stopped, what will be the implications with Iran? Allowing North Korea to gain any leverage from test detonating an atomic bomb will only encourage Iran to do the same.

Whatever the criticisms of the previous administration, right or wrong, the last six years lie firmly in the lap of Bush, Rumsfeld and Rice. Poor planning and deployment of assets have all been handled by this administration. All the talk, rhetoric and "diplomacy" have come from the lips of this administration. Saddam Hussein and the Taliban were not threats to US security. They had no irons in the fire so their defiance was easy to swat at (or so they thought). Ill-planned, ill-prepared and ill-equipped, things have only deteriorated.

The nuclear card being played in North Korea and Iran are much different. They saw what an easy target these two countries made themselves and have acted specifically to counter such a response. Now the security of the world is on the line and this administration is not equipped to deal with them either.

Posted by: RMill | October 10, 2006 3:43 PM | Report abuse

almost worked - with Arafat. He had no intention of ever obliging any agreements. don't you ever learn? He launched the intifada right after all his concessions were obtained. Talk, talk, talk. I admit it is difficult to recover from clinton's and allbright's 8 long years of international mismanagement. Maybe another 10 years of rudi will alleviate the problem.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Lenny I agree with you a Blackwell shellacking could hurt Dewine, but Strickland will not win by more than 8%. My democratic friends at my office wil attest when I said I was undecided between Blackwell and Strickland. Seeing it's obviuos Strickland will win, I'm going to vote for him. That way when he comes by out Department to chat, I can look him in the eye and say I voted for him. Pragmatism my friend. You libs have to be upset about the Foley scandal losing steam, because you can't talk about issues like North Korea or terrorism becasue you LOSE that argument everytime with the american people, so why would you think the results would be any different this time. You guys beter get off that meth, its illegal.

Posted by: bhoomes | October 10, 2006 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Well I guess no one is listening to you. The american people know what they are voting for- no more big government, no more borrow and spend, no more high taxes, no more failed foreign policy, no more 9 trillion dollar debt. Do you ever read a poll? Anyone who thinks DeWine will win in Ohio is stuck in neocon fantasy land worse than this liar KOZ.

Posted by: Larry | October 10, 2006 3:28 PM | Report abuse

JEP is having a long X-files hangover.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Not to get off track, but I recall a pretty extensive effort to bring peace to the middle east - that almost worked. Of course, the GOP wouldn't stand for that, so totally unravelled all the efforts of the prior administration. Their asinine theories about diplomacy have done little but create more enemies for the US and more danger in the world. Going over the "Axis of Evil," we have Iraq, where 140,000 of our troops are unsuccessfully playing the role of peacekeepers, 3+ years and counting. We have Iran closer to the bomb, more emboldened than ever & with more power and prestige amongst their neighbors. Lastly, North Korea is testing long range missles and - possibly - nuclear devices. What a stellar record this administration has at defining their goals & executing. Too bad there's a two-term limit, eh?

Posted by: bsimon | October 10, 2006 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Since this thread is off topic anyway, lets start a new one...

I was reading the Kerry article and some of his money went to former military and defense establishment candidates.

That led me to the question: How many of the Dem candidates are tradional liberal dems and how many are "We aren't repubs anymore" dems?

How many of these Dem candidates would have been Repubs during the years of Carter/Reagan?

Posted by: Dan W | October 10, 2006 3:23 PM | Report abuse

JEP,

"But the Republicans controlled the voting process, so even if they did not actually win, they might have been able to find the numbers to fit their needs. But without access to oversight for the opposition party, there's no way to know for certain what the results really were.

So the question mark still hangs there.

Again, this is one of the best reasons in the world to vote for Democrats in the Secretary of State races across the country.

Eliminate those election question marks."

These are your comments. I have a question concerning the last Iowa presidential election. Who is the current Secretary of State....hmmmm...Chet Culver....hmmm who is currently running for governor in the state of Iowa....hmmm...Chet Culver a D. Please explain how a D missed all the voting irregularities as you claim. If it is as you say then Chet must be one incompetent candidate who does not deserve to be governor of this state. Before you post nonsense please check your facts. I have posted a link to the Iowa secretary of state web page. Please get informed and stop embarrassing the state of Iowa with your partisan comments.

http://www.sos.state.ia.us/

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Reasons to vote:
Lower taxes have cut the deficit from 5% to 2% of GDP
Unemployment is at record lows - lower than 70s, 80s and 90s.
Stock market is at all time hi
It's the economy stupid!
also we would like to live to see the rewards of our hard work. surrendering, retreat and endless negotiation doesn't get the job done. this is what the Dems will do - retreat, raise taxes, negotiate, give away money, etc.

what the Dems won't do:
clean up congress - just look at their record. this is a joke. (Clinton pardoned Democrat Congressman Mel Reynolds (Ill.) who had been convicted of felonies for having had sex with a 16-year-old campaign worker. just one sordid example)
Save you any money - they spend, spend, spend.
win a war - all they know to do is run for the hills

this is all you need to know when voting this year.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 3:15 PM | Report abuse

I keep forgetting - NOTHING is ever the clinton's fault. not sleazy sex mores, not failed anti-terror policies, not the strategy to talk your way out of anything. clinton's biggest concern was when would the artificial Internet bubble burst - please not before I leave office, it is after all, the only thing to hang his pitiful legacy upon. so Bush inherits all those worthless agreements and policies. then when they go sour, all you Libs forgto how we got to this point. you dance with the one that brung ya. Are you now saying that even though clinton was a total failure, bush should have corrected those mistakes? Now we have something we can begin a conversation about. I am glad we agree that talking to those idgits is a waste of time. Now what? do you revoke your cut and run idea? your police as enforcers policy? your UN anarchalateral approach? there may be hope for you yet.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Texas is an interesting race, but not really a likely turnover. Having 3 credible challengers has (so far, anyway) ensured that no one person is able to seriously threaten Perry, despite his widespread unpopularity. Some of the polls have suggested that Strayhorn may have moved into a clear 2nd place, but still show her 10 points or so behind Perry.

The best reason MN and Jesse Ventura aren't a good analog for this year's Texas race are that he was an independent benefiting from the 2 big party nominees slugging each other. There are several examples in recent American politics of a 3rd candidate quietly jumping into first after two higher-profile candidates damage each other with negative campaigning. None of the Texas challengers fit that scenario, however, because Perry doesn't have a single strong opponent. The race is too much of a muddle for any one candidate to put together any serious momentum, at least up to now.

Posted by: Staley | October 10, 2006 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Bhoomes, Strickland bothered you all summer but, once you realized (or woke up) that Blackwell had no shot, you downplay your true feelings toward him. What a joke.

Regarding the Senate race, as a moderate myself, personally, I don't think DeWine is that bad. However, I think he is an irrelevant Senator who has not accomplished anything noteworthy in 12 years.

You better be careful with your Senate prediction Bhoomes, because if Blackwell loses by more then 12%-15% he might take DeWine down with him. And where Blackwell is going is awfully hot!

Posted by: lenny | October 10, 2006 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Wow is all I can say with respect to North Korea. The Bush administration has been in power for almost SIX FULL YEARS folks, yet somehow this is STILL Bill Clinton's fault?

Look, there is a debate to be had regarding how best to deal with North Korea now. Candidly, I don't think there are any perfect options. But to say that somehow a nuclear test 6 years into the BUSH ADMINISTRATION is somehow Clinton's fault? That just proves my point that the GOP has turned Truman's old proverb on its head: The buck apparently stops anywhere BUT WITH the Bush administration.

Posted by: Colin | October 10, 2006 2:59 PM | Report abuse

If OH wants higher taxes, more regulation, worse schools then they should by all means vote Dems in. It is their choice after all.

"The worst thing we could do is to accede to North Korea's demand for bilateral talks," McCain said. "When has rewarding North Korea's bad behavior ever gotten us anything more than worse behavior?"
"I would remind Senator (Hillary) Clinton and other Democrats critical of the Bush administration's policies that the framework agreement her husband's administration negotiated was a failure,"

Oh no, the Libs poster boy and presses' favorite turncoat has weighed in on the side of reason. what will you Libs do now? Maybe Kerry could report for duty. Or Jimmy and Jesse could fly over for a talk. that always works.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Drindl proves my point liberals cannot be trusted with National Security. Her thesis is if we only TALK to North Korea, none of this would have happen. HELLO: Thats all you guys did doing the Clinton years. If it had worked, we wouldn't be where we are today. Lenny, Stricland does not bother me, Ohio statehouse does not control foriegn policy. Now if Dewine slould lose to Sherrie Brown, it would bother me, but that's not going to happen. Except in your dreams.

Posted by: bhoomes | October 10, 2006 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Glad to see more good news for Granholm, and it's nice to see CC move MI GOV a few spots back.

Up next, tonight's debate: http://tinyurl.com/s75sr

Just watch, after last week's dismal performance, DeVos is going to go negative, and he'll go negative fast. This time around the candidates can't break in on each other's answers. The more-boring format is probably better for DeVos, so if he's going to win one, tonight's his night. But I'm pretty sure tonight isn't his night.

Posted by: TGG | October 10, 2006 2:22 PM | Report abuse

For those who can reason and think:

'Some analysts flayed Washington for not engaging Pyongyang directly in talks, and said North Korea had slid irreversibly into the global nuclear club.

"North Korea has succeeded in its nuclear ambition. The U.S. can do nothing at all now," said Shen Dingli, director of the U.S. Study Center at Fudan University in Shanghai.

Under the watch of the Bush administration, North Korea dropped out of the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, booted nuclear monitors, strengthened its missile capabilities and reprocessed nuclear fuel, giving it enough plutonium for up to 10 or more warheads."

http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwashington//15718669.htm

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 2:21 PM | Report abuse


'vote D - because every little tin-pot dictator deserves to have his very own A-bomb.'

I guess there's no statute of limitations on when you can stop blaming the world's problems on clinton. After bush did nothig to kim Jong for SIX FREAKING YEARSS the wingnuts can still blame him for it.

I mean did nothing except REMOVE THE INSPECTORS TO APPEASE KIM which allowed him to do exactly what he did.

Amazing--there's your 17% of incurable cultists for you JEP.

The Grand Delusion, indeed. What is should be is

'vote r - because every little tin-pot dictator deserves to have his very own A-bomb.'

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 2:18 PM | Report abuse

The difference between Rs and Ds is that Dems have the political will to pay for their proposals. Republicans are the ones that trashed PAYGO rules. Dems understand that to pay for something you either have to cut spending or raise revenues.

Republicans just cut taxes for millionaires until we're drowning in red ink and then have no willingness to make the spending cuts to pay for it. As a young person, I just want to say thanks to the 109th Congress for making my generation pay for your debt.

Posted by: Zach | October 10, 2006 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The anti-Perry leads Gov. Goodhair in Texas, but nevertheless stands to lose because there is no runoff. One ray of hope: the 2/3ds of the electorate who want Perry out will actually vote for the candidate who was in second place on election eve.

Posted by: Austin lawyer | October 10, 2006 2:04 PM | Report abuse

How can you guys give so little play to the AP story on George Allen's financial shenanigans? He takes Xybernaut officials on a trade mission abroad when he was governor, then gets on their board of directors and his law firm gets paid hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. He owns options on 110,000 shares of stocks but fails to disclose it, as required by the Senate. Then he write to the Pentagon urging that they act quickly on Xybernaut's contract bid. He sells the stock after federal probes are opened into charges against the company's officials, who then file bankruptcy. Class action suits have been filed. And you put it on page B5!

Posted by: GeorgeAllenVa | October 10, 2006 1:56 PM | Report abuse

OOPS!

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I truly hope that all Democratic candidates prevail on November 7th but, here in Ohio, the fact that Ken Blackwell will never been seen or heard from again is the best news that this Ohio resident will celebrate.

And Bhoomes, don't kid yourself, you and your right-wing wacko better realize that the Republican ruled legislature will turn blue next election. Count on it!

Posted by: Lenny | October 10, 2006 1:38 PM | Report abuse

JEP,

I think you have trouble reading. It said non-defense spending.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 10, 2006 1:36 PM | Report abuse

"Congress cut Bill Clinton's non-defense budget requests by an average of $9 billion each year. But Congress has added an average of $16 billion to Bush's requests."

So much for the party of national defense..

Clearly their politics mattered more than their public.

It was a Republican Congress, not a Democratic President, who degraded our military in the 90's, for strictly political reasons.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Hastert's really grasping at straws now, everything he says actually applies to HIM!

How comical!

And Bush's ratings just dropped under 35%.

So much for a bounce.

Bounced right back down...

When will it hit those 17% "cult" numbers?

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Chris is probably close with his analysis of the MN Gov race. While in some polls, Hatch is polling above Pawlenty, it is still unclear how the Independence Party candidate, Peter Hutchinson, will impact the race. Pawlenty won his first term with 43% of the vote. It is not yet clear if that number is a ceiling for his support. I suspect he won't do as well this time out, but Hutchinson (IP) could be the beneficiary, rather than Hatch.

Posted by: bsimon | October 10, 2006 1:12 PM | Report abuse

I'm afraid Saxton has a pretty good chance here in Oregon. He has been spending huge amounts of money for the past three months. He has the money backing him. Kulongowski has the unions and the regular folk in the cities, but Saxton has huge signs all over rural Oregon. Our state is in a mess and Saxton will drive it deeper, but I guess, as always, money talks. The metropolitan areas are definately blue, but much of rural Oregon buys the BS and still think repubs. hold the moral highground. I love this state and if Saxton is elected, our schools and services are going to get even worse than they have been since measure 5.

Posted by: Joan | October 10, 2006 1:12 PM | Report abuse

GO Blue, you're exactly right that the Amway ads do seem and act like DeVos campaign ads as they address Dick's fondness for outsourcing.

I agree with Chris that MI is looking safer for Granholm than last time, but it's still close. If anyone watched the first debate, it's no wonder DeVos' numbers went down, he looked uncomfortable and evaded answering many of the questions. This isn't an anomaly as DeVos has been vague regarding policy specifics the entire campaign.

The 2nd debate is tonight, although with the Tigers game on, many voters may not tune in. I'm guessing DeVos will go negative since the format plays into his ability to regurgitate talking points attacking the Governor and not engage in an actual dialogue.


Posted by: Chuck | October 10, 2006 12:54 PM | Report abuse

The facts (http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061010/OPINION/610100341/1002) speak for themselves. A true patriot wouldn't even bother arguing.

"Probably the most striking contrast between the Bush era and the last six years of the Clinton administration is this: Congress cut Bill Clinton's non-defense budget requests by an average of $9 billion each year. But Congress has added an average of $16 billion to Bush's requests. The president has never vetoed these Republican spending binges, and his occasional veto threats have not been taken seriously.

That would likely change if Democrats were offering up bloated spending bills -- that is, if such bills even got out of Congress. No doubt Republican legislators would recall that they once were the party of fiscal responsibility if it were a bunch of Democrats voting to spend recklessly."

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | October 10, 2006 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Why you will lose:
1994 - The Times reported it this way: "At a news conference in Washington, President Clinton said the treaty 'was a good deal for the United States.'"
"former President Jimmy Carter held talks in Pyongyang with North Korea's dictator Kim Il Sung, that defused the crisis and led to new negotiations with the United States.
The Times concluded that "Bill Clinton will be the biggest winner, a master negotiator on a critical security issue."

October 8, 2006, the world learns that in spite of everything that Clinton, Jimmy Carter, and their respective Democratic national security teams believed, the North Koreans have just exploded their first nuclear weapon

Democrats are running for House and Senate seats all over the nation supporting some version of this very same appeasement policy towards Iraq, the War on Terror, and critically, Iran.

vote D - because every little tin-pot dictator deserves to have his very own A-bomb.

the predictions of Rs demise are greatly exaggerated. Remember this ploy last time around when the exit polls showed that Kerry won in a walk? this is applying the friendly media to suppress votes. nice tactic. when the R victory is in hand, there will be no analysis of the failing policies blamed. the drindls and JEPs will blaame it on fraud, theft, abuse, conspiracies, etc. Anything to distract from the horrible ideas they espouse. Higher taxes, more spending, retreat, bureaucracy, more government, more investigations, less freedom.

Posted by: kingofzouk | October 10, 2006 12:37 PM | Report abuse

From today's WaPo:

"WASHINGTON -- House Speaker Dennis Hastert said Tuesday he'll dismiss anyone on his staff found to have covered up concerns about ex-Rep. Mark Foley's approaches to former pages.

Hastert said he huddled with his staff members last week and he believes they acted appropriately in handling information on Foley's conduct. But he also issued them a stern warning: "If they did cover something up, then they should not continue to have their jobs." "

Hmmm, so intentionally not talking about Foley is bad but apparently unintentionally not talking about Foley is OK. Look for a lot of "I didn't know I should do something" statements from Foley's staff. Incompetence (either real or feigned) is now a legitimate defense in DC. Reagan's early stage Alzheimers' has now been passed on to the entire GOP.

Funny, that won't work out in the street: "Officer, I was aware that it was a 25 mph zone but I forgot and did 60."

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | October 10, 2006 12:28 PM | Report abuse

JEP, your comments about biofuels are right on imho. The trick is not mega-expansion of massive grain corporations. The trick is cooperative groups of local farmers contribtuing their stock to strategically-placed regional biorefineries.

Add in anaerobic digestion of both bagasse (leftover vegetative matter) and livestock manure, and you have yourself a system that:

- produces cheap biofuels
- grows the local agro-economies to benefit small farmers
- in fact, CREATES JOBS at small farms and biorefineries across the breadbasket
- conserves energy and heat (burning methane produced by anaerobic digestion creates energy but also heat to warm livestock pens and farmers' homes)
- is environmentally-responsible on the local level
- reduces greenhouse gases caused by petro fuels

Biofuels are not THE answer. But a comprehensive distributed renewable/sustainable energy generation platform will go much much farther than anything the oil/gas industries can come up with for the mid-long term. Add serious conservation efforts (that have been avoided by you-know-who) and heightened CAFE standards (ditto), and having every vehicle made use hybrid technology, and we wont have to worry about oil or the price of energy any more.

Posted by: F&B | October 10, 2006 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Latest from Rotherberg regarding state legislatures for those interested:

Rothenberg Report 10-4
Democratic-held Toss-Ups:
Colorado House
Colorado Senate
Maine House
Maine Senate
North Carolina House
Oklahoma Senate

Republican-held Toss-Ups:
Indiana House
Iowa House
Minnesota House

Tied Toss-Ups:
Iowa Senate
Montana House

Democratic-held Lean Democratic:
Montana Senate
Tennessee House
Washington House
Washington Senate

Republican-held Lean Republican:
Nevada Senate
Oregon House
Pennsylvania House
Tennessee Senate
Wisconsin Senate


http://rothenbergpoliticalreport.blogspot.com/2006/10/state-legislative-races-outlook.html

Posted by: RMill | October 10, 2006 12:21 PM | Report abuse

"I formally worked for a large chemical company (DuPont)"

That pretty much confirms everything I suspected.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

I also used to live on the corner of Connecticut Blvd and Military RD, in a 2-story brownstone that is long gone.

I don't call muself DC.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 12:13 PM | Report abuse

JEP,

"But please, don't tell me "we aren't there yet," that is just an industrial strength excuse to stall future progress until the benefit (profits) go to the corporations instead of the citizens and their communities"

I formally worked for a large chemical company (DuPont) and in the late 90s it sold or should better say spun off Conoco because that portion of the company was a drain on corporate profits. At the time oil was only in the mid $40 a barrel. Why did DuPont sell off its feedstock (crude oil) it thought that plants were the future. However, something happen along the way the GMO (genetically modified organisms) became somewhat taboo (concerning plant residue) and the great promise that plants would produce an endless supply of cheap feedstock was missed placed. Don't get me wrong some plants are used as feedstock but at much lower levels than originally believed. DuPont invested heavily in R&D (millions of dollars) concerning this experiment. I applaud DuPont for trying (I still have close ties) and I think maybe in the distance future but concerning the now present it was a bad deal. In the same sense I stand by my statement that we on not there yet as you so like to infer.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 12:12 PM | Report abuse

I also used to live on the corner of Connecticut Blvd and Military RD, in a 2-story brownstone that is long gone.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 12:12 PM | Report abuse

"I still find your knowledge of the subject limited even if you grew up on a farm in Iowa."

How about this;
I actually studied biofuels in Davis, California, home of UCDavis, and also studied methane recovery research at their Yolo County landfill experiment.

At the time I was also promoting solar panels on new construction in California.

So, while I don't have a degree in it, I do have knowledge about the subject of biofuels. I still have the reply letter from Jimmy Carter, who was the first official I presented this idea to, back in 1978.

I'll leave it at that.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Former MI resident, there has been a lot of attention to the DeVos Amway issue, as CC mentioned in the post. Interestingly, yesterday on a Detroit network I saw an Amway ad for the first time ever. It was one of those touchy-feely types showing employees who claim to love their jobs and the company for which they work. It smelled very much like a DeVos-funded effort to put a pleasant spin on his former company in reaction to the bad press (i.e. outsourcing to China) that has been central to the Granholm campaign in recent weeks.

Posted by: Go BLUE | October 10, 2006 12:02 PM | Report abuse

JEP,

"Don't you consider it a bit outlandish that you just casually use the screen name "Iowa," as if you own it or somehow singlehandedly represent it?"

Since when have I said I represent the whole state, I use the screen name since I formally lived in the DC area prior to my move to Iowa. The statement reflects my perspective in Iowa seen from my DC background. You could easily have used the same screen name and I would not protest it is nothing more than a screen name. I see other people using their state as a screen name (Ohio guy).

I agree that not all Iowans agree with me; however, I don't post statements as partisan as yours. I grew-up reading the WasPo and know it tilts to the left; however, it does not tilt nearly as far as the WasTimes (formally the Star) does to the right. I dare say anybody thinks all Iowans think like me. If they do, they need to visit this great state more than every 4 years.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 11:54 AM | Report abuse

"Farmers who benefit from biofuels most are the large operators not the small farmer of your article something you seem to miss in your post and something it appears you detest."

I grew up watching rich, Republican farmers and their local banker busddies wipe out their neighbors one small farm at a time, so "detest" might actually be quite accurate.

And I was in one of those Iowa Republican families so I saw it from the inside, not the outside.

I can not deny it, I sincerely hope to see many small Iowa communities build their own small, environmentally friendly energy plants, with truckloads of small-farm biomass pulling in and out of the nearby storage bins.

You might suggest I think small.

As for us "not being there yet" that is energy-industry hogwash, Brazil has been depending on suger-can based ethanol for transportation fuels for decades, and if THEY can do it, WE can do it.

Or don't you believe in American ingenuity.

Did you not appreciate the "living laboratory" concept that hundreds, better yet, thousands of small plants with creative, enterprising engineers might develop?

The only reason we "aren't there yet" is because some peolple are trying to turn it into another big-business industry, instead of a community based industry.

And that all comes down NOT to what the bottom line is, or to what technology is available, but to WHO BENEFITS from that bottom line.

But to say "we aren't there yet" is ignoring a great deal of clear evidence to the contrary.

The only reason we arent "there' yet is that the agricultural corporate entities now deeply involved, like ADM, don't want it to benefit the community on a local basis, they want it to benefit their Wall Street shareholders first, and Iowans second.

This discussion is straying far from the Line, so I'll drop out for now.

But please, don't tell me "we aren't there yet," that is just an industrial strength excuse to stall future progress until the benefit (profits) go to the corporations instead of the citizens and their communities.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Marylander from Iowa;

"You have made some outlandish statements in staying that Iowans thought the election was stolen.."

Don't you consider it a bit outlandish that you just casually use the screen name "Iowa," as if you own it or somehow singlehandedly represent it?

If you really want that credibility you seem to have a monopoly on, you definitely need to change your moniker, and when you do, try something a bit less presumptuous.

There are lots of Iowans who don't agree with you.

And while it is true there are lots of Iowans who don't agree with me, I don't call myself "Iowa."

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 11:37 AM | Report abuse

JEP,

"And, by the way, corn is NOT the only biofuel crop, and hybrid development of milo, cane and other alternatives is one of the most important developments for making this change in our energy markets."

Concerning the other potential sources of fuel, we are not there yet in terms of technology to develop them nor do we have market for those products. I stand by my statement concerning diversification issues and I stand by my statement concerning research dollars needed (which I know you agree with). Farmers who benefit from biofuels most are the large operators not the small farmer of your article something you seem to miss in your post and something it appears you detest. The pie in the sky article offers little fact only speculative ascertains. If any thing is worthless as teats on a boar hog it was your article. I still find your knowledge of the subject limited even if you grew up on a farm in Iowa.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Interesting to note, R's are in trouble everywhere. Why? They run right wing candidates in primaries that lose in the fall. Just like Dems nominate liberal presidential candidates that lose to idiots like Bush.

Posted by: An Ashamed R | October 10, 2006 11:28 AM | Report abuse

'2) Deval has a history reducing the sentences of a rapist and a cop killer. These could be GOTV issues for the Rs and a sway for the independents.'

sure has the ring of wingnut propaganda, doesn't it?

Drindl: Its not Propaganda. The adds are aimed at a specific target audience within the R base. I think are well aimed and specific.
In addition, if they get the Police Union to be against Deval then other unions will follow suit.

Andy: I haven't seen the ads where he defends himself on this issue. Until I see one I have to hold off on that conversation.

Posted by: Dan W | October 10, 2006 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Lonestar;

Don't fret, once I accidentally pasted three whole pages on here, when I thought I was just pasting a paragraph.

And I saw that debate on TV, there's little doubt Bell won hands down, and that sacred pledge he made in his closing statement was quite sincere, and perfectly timed for Texans.

Perry looked like he felt terribly uncomfortable, as if there was a burr under his saddle or something.

Kinky was... Kinky.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Chris, I posted a comment here several weeks back that Saxon was running a steady stream of negative ads that were effective. Most of these are negative ads about Oregon schools being terrible (our HS graduates actually have the 2nd highest SAT scores in the country, but facts never seem to get in the way of negative ads). The ads also point out our 16% high school drop out rate, but (again) almost all of those are the children of the swarms of illegals we have here. The rest are about overpaid teachers and never mention that Ron Saxton owns a private education outfit and one of his ideas is to "privatize" schools (can all public teachers and contract out education....to his outfit, of course). All the while these ads are devistating Kulongoski has been running ads where he reads to young children in a classroom and brings up the fact that he is self made and was raised in an orphanage. It Kulongoski the gentleman against Saxton the street fighter and, of course, Kulongoski is being destroyed - Kerry vs. Bush all over again. Unless Kulongoski go's negative and points out that Ron Saxton is as much a loony as KOZ, Oregon is in for a nightmare.

Posted by: MikeB | October 10, 2006 11:24 AM | Report abuse

I apologize for my previous comment appearing 3 times. It didn't appear to have done anything the first two times I hit "submit." I know it's annoying and I'm sorry.

It won't happen again.

Posted by: LonestarJR | October 10, 2006 11:18 AM | Report abuse

You need to add Texas, for sure. Chris Bell scored a total, dramatic victory in Friday night's debate, as Kinky came off as a clueless curmudgeon, Strayhorn appeared robotic and Perry sneered at the notion he could be ousted. Yesterday Bell got a huge infusion of money from one individual who pledgestoraiseor givew an additional $4 million between now and election day.

Posted by: LonestarJR | October 10, 2006 11:14 AM | Report abuse

You need to add Texas, for sure. Chris Bell scored a total, dramatic victory in Friday night's debate, as Kinky came off as a clueless curmudgeon, Strayhorn appeared robotic and Perry sneered at the notion he could be ousted. Yesterday Bell got a huge infusion of money from one individual who pledgestoraiseor givew an additional $4 million between now and election day.

Posted by: LonestarJR | October 10, 2006 11:13 AM | Report abuse

You need to add Texas, for sure. Chris Bell scored a total, dramatic victory in Friday night's debate, as Kinky came off as a clueless curmudgeon, Strayhorn appeared robotic and Perry sneered at the notion he could be ousted. Yesterday Bell got a huge infusion of money from one individual who pledgestoraiseor givew an additional $4 million between now and election day.

Posted by: LonestarJR | October 10, 2006 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Sorry bhoomes. Guess you didn't get the memo. Bushdaddy's boys are in charge now:

'James A. Baker III talks to the president on a regular basis, officials said. "I believe in talking to your enemies," he said in an interview on the ABC News program "This Week," noting that he made 15 trips to Damascus, the Syrian capital, while serving Mr. Bush's father as secretary of state.

"It's got to be hard-nosed, it's got to be determined," Mr. Baker said. "You don't give away anything, but in my view, it's not appeasement to talk to your enemies."

Not only that, but BUSH TOOK THE INSPECTORS OUT OF N. KOREA -- TO APPEASE THEM. Sorry you can't deny the reality, altho I'm sure you'll try.

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 11:12 AM | Report abuse

"You have made some outlandish statements in staying that Iowans thought the election was stolen."

Oh how I do wish it actually WAS outlandish. And I'm certainly not alone in my suspicions.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 11:09 AM | Report abuse

JEP,

Based on your last post and your post concerning biofuels I stand by my statement concerning credibility. I find you no different than the Clinton impeachers. You have made some outlandish statements in staying that Iowans thought the election was stolen. Accept the fact the state voted R in the last election, but it may not vote D in the next election depending on what choices the two parties give them.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 11:07 AM | Report abuse

'2) Deval has a history reducing the sentences of a rapist and a cop killer. These could be GOTV issues for the Rs and a sway for the independents.'

sure has the ring of wingnut propaganda, doesn't it?

Posted by: drndl | October 10, 2006 11:07 AM | Report abuse

"I am in favor of those stricter environemental regulations are you saying you want to go back to the days of the 40's and 50's in terms of environmental regulations?"

Duh..

Get serious.
Those were coal-fired and diesel fueled generators, did you not understand or perceive my point about using ethanol and biodiesel fuels? Wasn't that the essence of the issue?

So, how is your confusion about the meaning of my simple words somehow constitute me posing half-truths? You have simply trapped yourself in an intellectual cunundrum.

I'm certainly not posing half-truths, you're only getting half the information contained in the letter, and editing it according to your own prejudice before it reaches your brain.

Read more carefully. All your concerns and arguments are already addressed in the body of the letter.

I can tell you were educated somewhere other than Iowa, your deductive reasoning seems terribly flawed.

But from the tone of this line " If you think the small farmer will be back in business with the biofuels initiatives think again..." pretty much sums up the essence of your philosophy.

I disagree wholeheartedly.

And, by the way, corn is NOT the only biofuel crop, and hybrid development of milo, cane and other alternatives is one of the most important developments for making this change in our energy markets.

But until you take the time to actually read and intelligently digest what I wrote, this argument is about as worthless as teats on a boar hog.

I grew up in a family that raised and sold hybrid seed corn, sourghum and soybeans.

I've actually studied biofuels, along with being raised in the middle of it. So I know the technology exists to coax ethanol and biobutanol from other sources than corn.

You really can't dispute the fact. There are many alternatives, we just need the political will to proceed.

As long as naysayers relegate biofuels to the experimental dungheap, we will never start down the road towards energy independence.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 11:06 AM | Report abuse

I would move MD up one spot.

Also Green (WI) and Gibbons (NV) could face similar scutiny ala Nussle in the wake of the Foley scandal as members of the Republican Congressional delegation.

This would move WI down and NV up slightly.

IL I would drop altogether. Polls done by Chicago Times and Chicago Tribune had double digit leads (12 and 30 pts) for Blagovevich on 9/10 and 9/12 as did the both Zogby/WSJ Battleground polls in early and mid-Sept. (11 pts) and 12 pts from Rasmussen on 9/12.

MN has to be in the top 10
Rasmussen has Hatch up 5 (10/5), Survey USA had Pawlenty up 1 (9/28), Mason Dixon had Pawlenty up 3 (9/20), Zogby/WSJ Battleground in late Sept had Hatch up 1, and univ of MN had Hatch up 2 pts (9/18).

Should be right there with IA.

1. NY
2. OH
3. CO
4. MA
5. AR
6. MD
7. IA
8. MN
9. MI
10.ME
11.OR
12.WI
13.NV
14.RI A Brown Univ poll also had incumbant Carcieri up 50-38% (9/18)
15.AK
With the political climate and not any recent info, leaves this in my mind as a possiblity until we have better info.

Others to watch-
Quinnipiac poll in FL just released has Crist up 10 pts.

Two blips in SC and KS have incumbants Sanford (R) (4 pts on 9/27 from Survey USA) and Sebelius (D) (9 pts on 9/27 from Rasmussen)with only single digit leads.

Probably anomalies but interesting to watch to see if a trend develops in either.

CA seems to be over with Governator leading with double digits in most major polls except 8 pts in 9/7 Rasmussen poll and 9 pts in the second Sept Zogby/WSJ Battleground poll in mid-Sept.

Posted by: RMill | October 10, 2006 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Dan W,
The polls just don't agree with you. Healey's add's are tough but Patrick has come out and explained all the things she brings up. If it was say a 5% race then maybe they could take her over the top. But Patrick has consistently run 20% or higher. In the current environment Healey is dead in the water.

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

JEP,

Based on your last post and your post concerning biofuels I stand by my statement concerning credibility. I find you no different than the Clinton impeachers. You have made some outlandish statements in staying that Iowans thought the election was stolen. Accept the fact the state voted R in the last election, but it may not vote D in the next election depending on what choices the two parties give them.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 11:02 AM | Report abuse

It seems apparent to me the public has finally started to pay close attention to what's happening politically and are about to show their wrath on the GOP. This will play out with significant gains in Governorships, the Senate and the House. The GOPher's will rally in the last 10 days and stem some of the tide, but the Governorships will virtually break even, the Senate will stay Republican, and the House will change to Democratic. Watch for 1-3 members being courted to switch parties. Tom Davis, R-VA, is concerned about losing as many as 30 seats. Understand, he's only willing to say 30, I'll bet he thinks it's higher than that, in the 50 range. I think closer to 20, but if more serious damage comes to the GOPher's, as I suspect it will, all hell will break loose and we'll see a tsunami break on the GOPher's.

The GOPher's distraction arguments are washing with the public yet they persist in their belief that argument is best instead of owning up to mistakes. The feel admitting error is weakness. Weakness is when one CAN'T admit error and the voter's have reinforced in every election. Own up to screw up's and we'll forgive you. Deny, deny, deny, and we'll deny you right out of office.

As for the North Korean "nuke", I don't think so, less than a kiloton, which is smaller than the smallest bomb we've ever had. More likely a very large pile of high-explosive with some magnifiers, designed to impress us, but more likely all show and no substance, much like the rest of N. Korea's pronouncements. Look for this to be shown as a propaganda effort exposed as a fraud.

Posted by: BlueDog | October 10, 2006 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Has the Granholm campaign called out DeVos for what he is, king of the Amway pyramid? I mean who doesn't run away when they here the phrase, "I'd like to talk to you about network marketing." I know it's a tricky balancing act, but Amway's business model, although generating a lot of money, is just plain weird. Also, DeVos isn't well regarded in Grand Rapids, an area where he should do very well (largely because of Amway).

Posted by: Forme MI resident | October 10, 2006 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Mass won't be so cut and dry. Healeys adds may be low but they are going to hit their target audience. Deval has two major disadvantages going into this one...
1) He won't promise to honor the peoples wishes (state referendum) and return the state income tax to 5%. Healey has stated she plans to do so.
2) Deval has a history reducing the sentences of a rapist and a cop killer. These could be GOTV issues for the Rs and a sway for the independents.

Posted by: Dan W | October 10, 2006 10:46 AM | Report abuse

The North Korea blast isn't a done deal. There are more than one or two folks out there who don't think the blast was a real nuclear explosion.
I have heard from a couple people tied to foreign policy that it is widely beleived that North Korea doesn't have anyway near the capability to make a functional nuclear device. And their so called test was 1/50th the size of the one that India and Pakistan tested. Now it is possible that they built a really really small bomb but I think we will see that in the next few days when the Air force can test the radiation levels from the the explosion (depends on wind currents) we will find that NK actually just blew up a ton of conventional explosives to force the world to sit down one on one with them.
This in my humble opinion is a hoax put on by a clinically insane person. Either way we should sanction him into the stone-age and try and get China to do the same.

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Andy I didn't say we wouldn't lose seats, we will, but not enough to change who's in charge. Yea, Blackwell is a goner I accept that reality baring any bombshells.(According to you guys, he should be able to steal it. What will you say when he loses)Can't say it really bothers me because I am not a social conservative, plus I work for the State of Ohio and Strickland will have to pay off us state workers to keep the unions happy so I will personaly benefit with a Strickland win. In dangerour times, I have full confidence the country will not turn to the party of appeasment. We tried that under Clinton, Remember we gave North Korea all kinds of goodies if they promise to behave themselves. Of course they took the goodies and kept right on developing their nuclear capabilities. To think they would LIE. I bet you Clintonites never saw that one coming. A full naval blockaid the answer not any more silly talks that they use to string us along and playing the see no evil dems who make Neville Chamberlin look like a hawk.

Posted by: bhoomes | October 10, 2006 10:42 AM | Report abuse

JEP,

I would say most of that article says very little in terms of substance so it is hard to be too critical. I do think and I like biofuels as the future but it will take incentives (tax breaks and mandates) and research dollars. The industry as it stands is not ready to be mainstreamed; however, I have seen posts of yours saying it is ready. If you pulled current mandates away, the ethanol and biodiesel industries would not exist. I would also note that biofuels do not support large employment gains in rural communities. They do create good paying jobs, but the crews operating an ethanol or biodiesel plant are small compare to what a Maytag plant employed. I toured an ethanol plant that had one engineer present and less than 10 (I saw only 5) production shift workers.

"In decades past, every small community typically had their own power generating plant. Those of us who grew up in the 40's and 50's remember those local power stations. Only in the last 50 years have mega-plants, super-dams and nuclear facilities extended "the grid" to its current monstrous proportions."

Most of those facilities went under do to stricter environmental regulations and the cost to produce a unit of energy that could not be absorbed at the local level. I am in favor of those stricter environemental regulations are you saying you want to go back to the days of the 40's and 50's in terms of environmental regulations? Hmmm half-truths.

"Don't let biofuels become another tool of big business and factory farming."

Who else benefits from the biofuels boom other than the large cooperatives and "factory farms." If you think the small farmer will be back in business with the biofuels initiatives think again. In terms of environmental sustainability, biofuels actually encourage farmers to stay on a corn soybean rotation and actually limit diversification at the farm level. As I said before, there are no free lunches.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Dan: It's "Go METS!" Steinbrenner is the Steve Forbes of baseball.

Posted by: Nor | October 10, 2006 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Bush and Kim Jong -- perfect together. Two incompetent idiots who want to start WW3. Too bad we can't watch from the safety of another planet.

Posted by: drndl | October 10, 2006 10:36 AM | Report abuse

"A madman has acquired a nuclear weapon -- and that's GOOD NEWS? Because it distracts from a pedophile scandal?"

Just more proof this wimpy detonation was the October surprise Rove was so certain was coming when he promised us we would be scarted come election day.

Their logic seems to be, "If a NKorean nuke test can't trump sex predation of congressional pages in the media, what is the world coming to?"

Now I'm worried we're facing "Plan D", who knows where their desperation might take them?

Their NKorean nuclear trump card has turned into a subkiloton joker.

...the October surprise that "wasn't."

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 10:32 AM | Report abuse

"Concerning Nussle, he has yet to be implicated in any scandal and it appears to me it is political hack job to paint him in the same light..."

Operative word here is "yet."

Are you at all aware of Nussle's Congressional reputation as a major Tom Delay minion? Delay is so dirty, everyone who acted as his operatives should be questioned by a grand jury.

Ask your Republican friends, discreetly, if Nussle knows Delay.

Does it matter to you he was part and parcel of the entire Hastert/Delay mess?

Also,if you actuallyknew Nussle was involved in questionable, unethical strongarm politics, would you want to protect him or expose it?

Or is it just something we should all ignore, to avoid looking partisan?

Just more R denial, as far as I can read.

And at least I admit I'm a partisan.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), the Senate's king of pork, "killed a requirement for the Defense Department to evaluate unauthorized earmarks imposed by members of Congress on the Pentagon," Bob Novak reports.

Posted by: dana | October 10, 2006 10:20 AM | Report abuse

The Rhode Island race is not as close as it would appear. Fogarty, who in makeup resembles some B list Halloween character, is running ineffective ads that make him appear that he's phoning it in. He does much better in person, in the debates, but he is still behind in the public eye. His emphasis on "corruption" has been turned on him with the single observation that his Party has 99% of the corruptees, and that his political "friends" are the ones taking the hits for insider dealing. Carcieri's honesty and plain spoken "outsider" status, as well as his handling of the tragic Station Night Club fire, barely two months into his first term, have him well in the lead among the electorate.

Posted by: L.Sterling | October 10, 2006 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I think the republican base has gone clinically insane. Certainly the pundits on FOX have:

'GIBSON: Does the fact that the North Koreans actually tested a nuclear weapon balance out the bad news from this Foley scandal?

BLANKLEY: It doesn't balance it out. It's not a big enough story. As big as it should be, I don't think it will take the oxygen out of the news cycle. I think it will take some of the breathlessness out of the reporting of the Foley story, but there will be some room, as we're seeing today, both stories are getting coverage.'

A madman has acquired a nuclear weapon -- and that's GOOD NEWS? Because it distracts from a pedophile scandal?

I mean, is that not insanity? God help us.There MUST be something in the water...

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Bhoomes, what will feel great on Nov. 8th is the death of Ken Blackwell in Ohio politics.

You better watch his concession speach on election night because it is the last time you will see that nut in Ohio for a long time....good riddance.

Posted by: Lenny | October 10, 2006 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Sandwich Repairman
Are you sure the Plain Dealer endorsed Bush in 2004?
I seem to recall that the Plain Dealer made news by not endorsing anybody for President in 2004 because the paper's publisher and editorial staff had differences that they couldn't bridge.

Posted by: Mouse | October 10, 2006 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"Marylander from Iowa"

"I wish you would educate yourself on the complexity of the biofuels issues than write totally ignorant post on the subject."

Here's that post you mention, please correct my errors and illuminate us.

"Keep it local,
By John Patterson

As the farm belt develops its fledgling biofuel industry into an energy giant, local towns and municipalities should consider taking "first advantage" of this new bounty.

By producing their own electricity with generators, fueled with locally produced ethanol and bio-diesel, community utility companies channel user fees back into the local economy, in numerous ways.

Not only do the area farmers get the benefit of a new market for their crops, the local townspeople get high-tech engineering and production jobs at the ethanol plant, the bio-diesel plant, and the electrical plant. And they spend their wages in town.

And they all get cheaper energy prices.

Most rural communities in the Mid-West could produce a substantial supply of fuel well beyond local needs, and clusters of these communities could form into energy co-ops, creating a hundred county-sized OPEC's and establishing a very competitive market.

As fuel-plant co-op members, local farmers, city services, and school systems could get discount fuel for their ethanol and/or biodiesel powered vehicles and equipment.

This is not a new idea. Renewable fuels as the energy source for generators is something of a "retrotech" retrofit.

In decades past, every small community typically had their own power generating plant. Those of us who grew up in the 40's and 50's remember those local power stations. Only in the last 50 years have mega-plants, super-dams and nuclear facilities extended "the grid" to its current monstrous proportions.

And lets consider homeland security.

Not only would it make local economic sense to diversify and disperse our energy production, it would be a much more secure form of energy. The monster grids of today are, inherently, vulnerable to manmade and natural disasters. While an untimely disaster, tornado or terrorist, could take out one of the big grids, it would be nearly impossible for nature or mischief to disable a thousand local systems, spread out across the nation.

The U.S. farm belt has an historic opportunity to take advantage of the promise of bio-fuels, especially if they keep it in the local loop.

It would behoove state and federal governments to facilitate this transition, with loans and outright subsidies, and the local utility bills would pay off that loan, instead of corporate raiders.

After a couple decades paying off the state and federal loans, the community would own and manage its own power grid. And the ingenuity of a thousand American engineers would eventually develop the most efficient systems, as models for the future.

Think about it: The farm belt could be a veritable laboratory for biofuel research, churning out the kilowatts while advancing the technology towards its most efficient form.

It would give new opportunities to every facet of our local ands state economies. The engineering and the ag departments in some of our favorite Moo-U's would become conjoined in a new department. Surely MidWestern Academia would find a way to make a new major course of study out of that union.

Don't let biofuels become another tool of big business and factory farming.

Keep it local.

JEP

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 10:09 AM | Report abuse


'Doesn't Diebold make shredding machines, too?'

Yeah, also cash registers...

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Bhoomes is delusional. Let him be. It will make November 7th that much more satisfying.

Posted by: Shaun | October 10, 2006 10:08 AM | Report abuse

"That sound you hear is the paper shredder running full force on Pennsylvania Ave."

At first, I laughed out loud, but then realized you are probably quite right, especially in Rove's office.

I'd bet Hastert's got a shredder running somewhere, too. And a few other Republicans.

Might be a good time to buy shredder-company stock, they'll be grinding up evidence all over DC, for at least the next two years.

Doesn't Diebold make shredding machines, too?

Posted by: Anonymous | October 10, 2006 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: JoeyJoeJoe | October 10, 2006 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: JoeyJoeJoe | October 10, 2006 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: JoeyJoeJoe | October 10, 2006 10:01 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: JoeyJoeJoe | October 10, 2006 10:01 AM | Report abuse

JEP,

I agree with Repairman on the color of Iowa. However, I totally disagree with your views concerning the exit polls and the hijacking of the election. If you look at the make-up of the state house you will see that it is evenly divided. Consequently, the election could have gone either way, and the state has voted R 6 of the last 10 presidential elections. I would also note that Grassley is considered our senior senator who has won elections by far greater margins than Harkin. I do not agree with Harkin on all the issues but I think he is great for the state and I have voted for him in the past.

Concerning Nussle, he has yet to be implicated in any scandal and it appears to me it is political hack job to paint him in the same light. What I have read in the papers (DM and Ames) Nussle is not be tainted. People of Iowa are intelligent and I hope will not fall for your partisan rhetoric, but if Nussle is guilty of ethics I hope he is exposed.

I would note one other point off subject. I wish you would educate yourself on the complexity of the biofuels issues than write totally ignorant post on the subject. I find myself questioning the accuracy of your other post when I see you post on a subject I know about and you have posted something with half-truths (goes to credibility).

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 10:00 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: JoeyJoeJoe | October 10, 2006 10:00 AM | Report abuse

"Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

"When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list."

A couple of points: first, Perry has been far ahead of everyone else in every poll. The race is only close for second. Second, Ventura is MN isn't comparable, as a lot of his vote came from people who registered to vote on Election Day. You can't do that in Texas. As for Perot, his final number was actually lower than polls suggested, not higher. Except in Ventura's case, because of MN's same day registration rule, 3rd party candidates always drop off from what polls show. Is there anyone who thinks that Perry will lose?

Posted by: Anonymous | October 10, 2006 9:59 AM | Report abuse

For macacca watchers:

'Stock options that Senator George Allen described as worthless were worth as much as $1.1 million at one point, according to a review of Senate disclosure forms and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

The records appear to contradict remarks he made to the Associated Press. ``I got paid in stock options which were worthless,'' AP quoted him as saying.

...

In 2001, Allen's first year in the U.S. Senate, the company's share price recovered to $5.46 on May 25, which would have valued 110,000 options at $71,500 before commissions and other brokerage fees. Some of the options exceeded their strike price as recently as July 2004.

Allen wrote a letter to the U.S. Army on Xybernaut's behalf in December 2001, AP reported, citing John Reid, Allen's spokesman, who told AP he wouldn't disclose the contents of the letter. In September 2003 the U.S. Defense Department announced $2.13 million in contracts to buy the company's wearable computers.'

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 9:57 AM | Report abuse

Bhoomes,
The call for the fall of the house is coming from your side. A republican representative Tom Davis from VA is saying 7 will definitly fall and possibly 30. They are preparing for a Democratic House and Maybe senate (Allen just can't catch a break, but that is what happens when you are a racist, and you lie about your income).
That sound you hear is the paper shredder running full force on Pennsylvania Ave.

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 9:51 AM | Report abuse

"becoming one of three states that switched between the 2 presidential elections, narrowly going for Bush in 04."

That's the statistic that makes many Iowans scratch their heads. It just doesn't add up.

It definitely doesn't match what many people on the street believe is the truth. A lot of Iowans think Iowa did NOT vote Bush in 04, that is the issue, and a lot of Iowa Republicans also have suspicions.

But still, somehow, the final numbers told a different tale than the Iowa exit polls, and that alone should have stopped the whole process to get it sorted out.

But the Republicans controlled the voting process, so even if they did not actually win, they might have been able to find the numbers to fit their needs. But without access to oversight for the opposition party, there's no way to know for certain what the results really were.

So the question mark still hangs there.

Again, this is one of the best reasons in the world to vote for Democrats in the Secretary of State races across the country.

Eliminate those election question marks.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Good catch on the army thing drindl. My favorite is the army sponsoring a NASCAR car. BTW, the army only reached its recruiting standards yesterday by allowing people who are legally mentally retarded to enlist. You ask me, that's a bit scary.

Texas should be on the line somewhere. There was an Illinois poll a while back that had Blagojevich up 30. I'll grant that's probably high, but the incumbent is over 50.

Finally, Iowa is probably the bellweather for the number of governorships Dems will pick up. Right now I'd say 1-7 will all flip.

Posted by: Zach | October 10, 2006 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Deficit gone up again...through the roof. Cheney says it's 'their due'... sort of like Caesar I guess...

'O'Neill, fired in a shakeup of Bush's economic team in December 2002, raised objections to a new round of tax cuts and said the president balked at his more aggressive plan to combat corporate crime after a string of accounting scandals because of opposition from "the corporate crowd," a key constituency.

O'Neill said he tried to warn Vice President Dick Cheney that growing budget deficits-expected to top $500 billion this fiscal year alone-posed a threat to the economy. Cheney cut him off. "You know, Paul, Reagan proved deficits don't matter," he said, according to excerpts. Cheney continued: "We won the midterms. This is our due." A month later, Cheney told the Treasury secretary he was fired.'

-- Every time the GOP gets into power they loot the treasury like drunken pirates and run up huge debts for somebody else to pay. The record for the past 26 years is clear.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 9:45 AM | Report abuse

If you win the election, it will be because you stole it.. but hey, we're used to that now, aren't we? Like the 3rd world country we've become, we expect corruption, we've had 10 years of corruption and nothing but.

Hey look, when all else fails, call in the grownups. And that would be daddy's guy, James Baker, the family fixer. Looks like we won't be 'staying the course' after all"--it's become qutie clear that no matter who wins the election, congress will be calling for a pullout. Nobody wants the stinking carcass of Iraq tied around their necks anymore:

'WASHINGTON, Oct. 8 -- James A. Baker III, the Republican co-chairman of a bipartisan panel reassessing Iraq strategy for President Bush, said Sunday that he expected the panel would depart from Mr. Bush's repeated calls to "stay the course," and he strongly suggested that the White House enter direct talks with countries it had so far kept at arm's length, including Iran and Syria.

James A. Baker III talks to the president on a regular basis, officials said. "I believe in talking to your enemies," he said in an interview on the ABC News program "This Week," noting that he made 15 trips to Damascus, the Syrian capital, while serving Mr. Bush's father as secretary of state.

"It's got to be hard-nosed, it's got to be determined," Mr. Baker said. "You don't give away anything, but in my view, it's not appeasement to talk to your enemies."

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 9:37 AM | Report abuse

JEP: Disagree without being disagreeable. Something you are unable to do, grow up my friend. I cannot wait until Nov 8th, because your liberal media is setting you up for a hugh fall. According to them its a done deal that you will take the house. Not going to happen. Let me guess, being immature as most of you are, you will blame it on Diebold and somehow we stole the election.

Posted by: bhoomes | October 10, 2006 9:30 AM | Report abuse

"if he tries to paint Nussle to the Foley scandal he will have a hard time"

No one needs to "paint" Nussle to the Foley scandal, the connections will expose themselves.

Actually, Nussle's problems will likely unfold relating to Delay, much more than Foley.

That connection has not been scrutinized as yet, but will likely unfold before too much longer.

Comparing Nussle's direct and personal Delay/Hastert corruption connections to the partisan CEITC scandal (that many believe the desperate Iowa Republicans engineered to try to save their sinking ship,) is much worse than comparing apples and oranges. It is more like comparing serpents to oranges.

Or apples to scorpions.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the overview, Chris. I find it especially intriguing that there are so many Democrate incumbents that are in trouble. It would be great if you could please explain each incumbent's negatives to us at some point.

Posted by: Yockel | October 10, 2006 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Repairman;

You are right, Iowa is one of the purple states that can be any shade between red and blue.

Which is one reason why so many Iowans suspect foul play the last time around, they KNOW they are purple, not red, and the red results of 2004 didn't jive with what people felt should have been the results, it didn't even jive with their long-venerated exit polls.

Harkin is a great leader. He makes me proud to be "from Iowa." And Harkin is living proof that Iowa is one of the most well-educated, literate and politically sophisticated states in the union.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Not pleased about your comment towards the Yankees but you're absolutely right...Spitzer has this race locked and at this time I don't think there is too much that could stop his momentum.

GO YANKEES!!!!!

Posted by: Dan | October 10, 2006 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Your tax dollars at work:

'In its battle to win the hearts and minds of recruiting-age Americans, the Army is replacing its main ad slogan -- "An Army of One" -- with one it hopes will pack more punch: "Army Strong."

The new approach, the fruit of a $200 million-a-year contract with a major advertising agency, was announced Monday by Army Secretary Francis J. Harvey. He said "Army Strong" will be the centerpiece of a multimedia ad campaign to be launched Nov. 9, timed to coincide with Veterans Day weekend.'

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Ron Sexton didn't run in 2002; that was Kevin Mannix. Understandable confusion, as that is a lot of x's for one state.

Posted by: Brittain33 | October 10, 2006 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Sandwichman,

I'm sorry, but with respect to Texas you don't know what you're talking about. When Ventura was elected governor in Minnesota 8 years ago the polls had been solidly against him. In 1992 Perot also strongly outperformed the recent polls. Recent experience has shown that strong independents bring out people who would otherwise not vote and makes the pre-election polling unreliable. Since there is such a strong degree of uncertainty regarding the reliability of the polls, Texas belongs on the list.

I'll second Andy's suggestion on an article on the Texas race. It's easy to paint all of politics as good vs. evil when there are only 2 sides. The dynamics of a 4-way race are fascinating and something which should be explored here, as it is such an electoral oddity in this country (although not in many others).

Posted by: Zathras | October 10, 2006 9:07 AM | Report abuse

I like Vilsack as a governor (I wish he was running); however, if he tries to paint Nussle to the Foley scandal he will have a hard time not distancing Culver from the CIETC scandal in Iowa (scandal has to do with oversight neglect). At least in Iowa, the CIETC scandal has shown that both R (based on current situation in DC) and D are corrupt. I think the election will be close; however, I think Nussle will prevail due to Culver's lack of experience and how he painted himself as a strong pro-choice candidate (he defeated his closest D opponent by appealing to left wing of the party and contrasting their stands on abortion). Iowa is a state evenly divided between R and D and it's a state in which you can be pro-life and D something I was not accustomed to when I lived in Maryland. I will note that Culver is a good campaigner; he has charisma; and he has connections (daddy was powerful politician in the state). Unless Nussle is caught in serious ethics issue or he bombs in one of the last remaining debates, he should win.

Posted by: Iowa | October 10, 2006 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Maryland Dems are doing well not to take anything for granted. Ehrlich is running a superb campaign. Unfortunately for him, Marylanders are comfortable with O'Malley and seem to be returning to the Democratic fold.

Unlike 2002, the Democratic party is energized. I volunteered for Kathleen Kennedy-Townsend in 2002. It was my worst campaign experience ever. Those of us who were on the ground could see the train wreck coming for a couple of months.

We would call elderly voters in Baltimore City and they would refuse to tell us who they would vote for, which meant not Townsend. And middle class African Americans in Prince George's didn't take Townsend seriously.

It does not feel that way this time.

Nonetheless, I remain skeptical of the polling data. Confessing Republican leanings is not a badge of honor in Maryland. I wouldn't be surprised if there are Ehrlich supporters who don't dare to be open about it. Move a couple of points and Ehrlich is in striking distance.

Posted by: Yockel | October 10, 2006 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Someone could earn their doctorate studying the brainwashing tactics of modern day right-wing politics.

Limbaugh, Hannity, Coulter, even Imus, have all contributed to the patent prejudiced programming, those daily talking points, that mislead the mainstream away from its real heart and soul and pits our citizens against each other in a profane political wrestling match that has no winners.

Seriously, the history of brainwashing by the wing-nut media is a monumental tale of deceit and manipulation, the fomenting of prejudice and hatred between Americans, brother against brother, sister against sister, parent against child.

That is just not the American way.

We can disagree, without hating our fellow Americans who might disagree with us.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 9:03 AM | Report abuse

I wondered about that, judge, so only one seems slightly less deranged than the other, but maybe it's multiple personalities. With people of that viewpoint, it's hard to tell anyway, since like most victims of propaganda, they use exactly the same talking points, with exactly the language they've been taught.

Not to worry about the Foley mess, Denny sez:

'Here's what The Hill said about Hastert's move in 2005:

The substitutions are widely seen as being designed to rein in a committee, officially called the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, that many GOP lawmakers believe had spun out of control.
Now Hastert says everyone should rest easy, because the Ethics Committee -- the same committee he revamped to ensure that it got back under control (his control) -- has launched an investigation into the Foley scandal.

Oh, by the way, USA Today points out that Hastert's political action committee has contributed to Hastings and the other Republican on the subcommittee, Rep. Judy Biggert of Illinois.'

Now where's that can of white paint?

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 8:57 AM | Report abuse

Iowa red?? Hm, it elected Sen. Tom Harkin in 1984, and reelected him in 1990, 96, and 2002. It elected Democratic Gov. Tom Vilsack in 1998 and 2002. It voted for Gore in 2000, becoming one of three states that switched between the 2 presidential elections, narrowly going for Bush in 04.

This is not a red state; it's purple.

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | October 10, 2006 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Ted Strickland picked up 3 big endorsements this weekend: http://sandwichrepair.blogspot.com/2006/10/oh-gov-three-big-papers-endorse.html

The Dispactch is an extreme right-wing rag, and the Plain Dealer endorsed Bush for president.

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | October 10, 2006 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Just one last note on Iowa.

Iowa's own irrascible punditry is calling it a potential statewide takeover of both state houses, by the Democrats.

But we have all been led to believe Iowa is such a red state, in part because of the 2004 Presidential election results.

Having been there recently, one thing I noticed is that so many former Bush supporters in Iowa now feel betrayed, it is as simple as that.

Betrayed. They think W lied to them, and is still lying.

And now that their bubble has apparently burst, there is also a very strong undercurrent of distrust of polling integrity because of the Republican's recent history of questionable election results.

Many Iowans, Republicans and Democrats, still doubt the results from Iowa's last Presidential election.

It is hard to find someone who doesn't have some story about how certain they were Kerry had taken their local vote, only to find that somehow Bush's numbers were, in the end, higher.

There is only so much wriggle room in Iowa for political subterfuge, this state caucuses and that puts a very physical proportion on the election process.

When the long-reliable Iowa exit polls (I have been a volunteer poll-watcher in Iowa before, the exit polls are historically quite accurate)were discounted for the first time in history, and last-minute totals changed precipitously, people knew something was fishy, even if there is no way to prove it unless one of the cheaters actually comes forward or is forced to testify.

Since the last election, many Iowans quite openly blame the Republican Party for enabling, by either direct participation, or with a wink and a nod, an election fraud that still lingers in many Iowans' memories.

Iowa political polls should include a question about this, there were too many politically involved Iowans who question the results of 2004 for it to be mere coincidence.

A lot of Iowans, from both sides of the aisle, suspect something's rotten in the Tall Corn State.

This ongoing suspicion and the political gossip it generates around the small-town coffeeshops is having a much bigger effect than the pundits just can not gauge.

Iowa's Democratic candidate for Secretary of State, Mike Mauro from Des Moines' south side, has been running on the "vote clean" ticket.

Considering the distrust the general public now has for the current Republican-managed legislature, he should have a good shot at taking it back for the Dems, and returning some trust to the Iowa election process.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Drindl: I think it's just 1-2 people posting under different names. Notice how they NEVER acknowledge each other.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | October 10, 2006 8:50 AM | Report abuse

CO has been trending Democratic. TX does not belong on this list as no challenger has a chance of beating Rick Perry. Rasmussen's latest MN GOV poll shows Hatch ahead of Pawlentt 44-42. Hatch should win this, and I don't see why that should be a surprise. Klobuchar's blowout in the Senate race may help Hatch too. The top 5 races here are definite Democratic pickups. Iowa seems likely to be the closest race, like MO SEN.

http://sandwichrepair.blogspot.com

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | October 10, 2006 8:48 AM | Report abuse


'Can you imagine trying to de-program one of those 17 percenters?

Curious, how victims of abuse actually defend their abusers. '

Curious but not uncommon. I can't really imagine how you could deprogram them. We've ssen many of them here, and you know rationality and reason won't do it. Daily doses of an insidious poison like Limbaugh for years probably causes permanent, irreversable brain damage, or at the very least, profouond impairment of cognitive proccesses and sociopathology.

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Colorado is looking bluer and bluer every year. I wonder if it is a change in population or a change in thinking?

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 8:33 AM | Report abuse

As a liberal democrat I take particular satisfaction and hope from prospects in Colorado. That bodes well nationally for Dems in 2008.

http://intrepidliberaljournal.blogspot.com

Posted by: Intrepid Liberal Journal | October 10, 2006 8:24 AM | Report abuse

no, Drindl, lets be fair, that's actually 17% credibility, not quite zero, but close enough.

Can you imagine trying to de-program one of those 17 percenters?

Curious, how victims of abuse actually defend their abusers.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 8:19 AM | Report abuse

I second Zathras point CC, where is Texas? If it isn't in the top 15 then you should do a special article explaining why.

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 8:17 AM | Report abuse

Still no Texas? This is a race with an incumbent in the low to mid 30s and with a very unpredictable nature, given the number of prominent candidates. Ventura showed that prominent 3rd party candidates can confuse polls with unexpected turnout on Election Day. A totally unpredictable race belongs higher than several listed here, such as Illinois and Nevada, which are basically over now.

Posted by: Zathras | October 10, 2006 8:08 AM | Report abuse

'Bush clearly faces constraints as he seeks to address the public concerns about Iraq that have shrouded this midterm election: 83 percent of respondents thought that Mr. Bush was either hiding something or mostly lying when he discussed how the war in Iraq was going.'

83 percent of the country thinks the president is lying about a war. Wow. Zero credibility.

Posted by: drindl | October 10, 2006 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Few thoughts on the line.
First I am really interested in what will happen in republican turnout in Rhode Island. Republicans don't like Lincoln Chafee and might just stay at home for this one. If that happens then the Democrats will take it down.
Oregon give me a break. There is no way they are voting Republican in this environment the State is just too Blue.
The rest are all going dmeocrat except for Minnesota.
And on the Maine race, this is EXACTLY the point of the public financing laws in Maine. They got tired of million dollar smearfests so they put a poison pill in the law to discourage it. If Baldacci can't win in this environment then he doesn't deserve to be governor, but that being said I think he pulls it out either way.

Posted by: Andy R | October 10, 2006 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Just slightly off subject, Iowa's congressional races are taking on their fall colors, Iowa's 4th District candidate Dr. Selden Spencer has been running ads about the Republican Latham's connections to some of the sleaze factors in DC.

Latham, of course, is crying about it in the press.

But David surely needed a sling and a stone to take down Goliath, and these Republican's systemic corruption may just be that stone that brings down numerous Goliaths.

This is one of the reddest districts in the country, but still Spencer, an articulate and soft-spoken Iowa physician who once worked as a volunteer for Cezar Chaves, has managed to ovecome a conspicuous drought of media coverage and gained popular support that his Republican opponent's campaign never expected.

Even in these red-country-races the Republicans are taking for granted they may have some surprises in store. It will be much closer than anyone imagines.

The ongoing culture of continual corruption on the Republican's recent DC record is losing them more and more support as each day rolls by.

This wave of national Republican political misfortune threaten to effect the Iowa Republicans in races from Governor down to every local office.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 7:41 AM | Report abuse

Big-money players are getting into the games, in an overt way.

Iowa's Governor's race is one good example of Big Beltway Dollars being spent by the Republicans on a governor's race they do NOT want to lose.

Chris mentions the tussle between Nussle and Culver in Iowa, a race that has become one of the most "Iowan" of elections in many decades.

This race pits the populer former Des Moines High School teacher Culver against the old-party DC insider Nussle.

It is tha classic "big corporations and factory farm" Republican candidate running against a populist Iowa Democrat with extensive union and activist support.

Culver's crew is young, extremely energetic and they've learned how to harvest votes in the Tall Corn State. And Iowa candidates have a new tool for this purpose, an exhaustive voter database that, for a price, any candidate can access for info about Iowa's registered voters.

Political managers from across the country have migrated to Iowa for this historic season, in order to become familiar with this futuristic voter recruitment tool.

Having been raised in Iowa, I have a very good feeling about how this is going. Considering Nussle's old DC connections, and the public records connecting him with some of the worst rogues in DC, particularly Tom Delay, the Foley fallout might just make this race start trending towards the Democrats the closer we get to election day.

Posted by: JEP | October 10, 2006 7:22 AM | Report abuse

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