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Born at the Crest of the Empire

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lindsey Graham blinks (sensually)

After the rather fantastic allegation (repeated frequently in the right wing press) that Lindsey Graham was backing immigration reform because he was being blackmailed for being secretly gay, it appears that Graham has blinked in the face of the allegation.

In a letter to (among others) key "family values" religious figures, he says he's now pulling out of the climate change talks because immigration is being too hurried.

Do you hear that, moral majority? He's telling you specifically that he's not being blackmailed because he's absolutely not gay.

(But he is willing to be manipulated by you if you call him gay.)

Poor Lindsey.

Thought for the Day - Carpe Diem

You know, if you do live every day like it's your last, your toilet gets very dirty.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Michael Steele admits the Southern strategy

The closest any Republican has ever come to admitting race politics by the GOP.
Why should an African-American vote Republican?

"You really don't have a reason to, to be honest -- we haven't done a very good job of really giving you one. True? True,"....

"For the last 40-plus years we had a 'Southern Strategy' that alienated many minority voters by focusing on the white male vote in the South....."

Four decades of race politics admitted.

Thought for the Day

President Obama hasn't held a full press conference in 274 days.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Pretty bad for the RNC

Read this excerpt from the report on RNC fundraising and the very dubious deal with Finance Director Rob Bickhart.

Related: I think I read somewhere that staffers were allowed to approve their own expenses.

It's no wonder they're losing money.

I'm curious

Dick Cheney endorses Fla Repub Senate candidate Marco Rubio. What's Rubio's upside here?

He's already got the Republican primary sewn up and the Cheney segment of Republicans support him almost unanimously. It would seem like Cheney's endorsement doesn't help him in any appreciable way, but it might hurt him in the general.

So is Rubio just happy to be "star" struck?

Whether Lindey Graham is gay or not, he's certainly screwing John McCain (And why immigration is next)

If Lindsey Graham is. in fact. working with Schumer to bring an immigration bill to to the Senate over the summer, he is seriously screwing John McCain.

McCain is in a tough, but winnable, primary against crazy legend JD Hayworth, but something like immigration where McCain has a clear record against his party in a state where immigration is a top issue could rock that tough, but winnable primary.

(It's not clear whether the Dems actually want to be locked down on votes on an immigration bill before the midterms, but it is pretty clear they want the Republican opposition and tone on the record.)

Politically, I see three goals to the Democrats bringing up immigration. 1) An immigration debate will likely help Hispanic turnout and Hispanic Dem support in the immediate midterms.

2) With the current level of Republican crazy, this is just an invitation for them to (inevitably) cross the racist line which will not play well at all among independent voters.

Plus, blatant images of racism will also reflect and undermine all the previous "tea party" type opposition to Obama, playing into the narrative that the all white tea partiers are in fact holding racial grievances.

3) The inevitable Republican reaction evoked during this hyper partisan time will serve to solidify Hispanic support for Dems for the longer term. As Hispanics are the fastest growing voting block, that will really matter. (If Dems can even partially lock up a generation of Hispanics over racism the way they locked up African Americans....)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The IRS looks into Rubio

Investigating the allegations of corruption at the Florida GOP, the IRS has begun looking at the finances of Senate candidate Marco Rubio.

Not that it will cost him the primary, but I do keep thinking of all the national figures who have been rushing south to have their picture taken with the next new darling.

Meme battle

Republicans begin to swing around on the financial reform bill.

In the first skirmishes, Republicans continued with "socialist"/"government tyranny" blanket opposition, and the Dems went with "Republicans in the pockets of big business and the rich."

It looks like the Dems won.

(You would really have to be a political fool to try and stand with the financial companies right now.)

The Republicans next attack appears to be to try to imply corruption by highlighting Goldman Sachs contributions to Democrats. (However, wouldn't the fact that the Dems are prosecuting Goldman undermine that argument?)

One more PS. How do the Republicans lose fundraising on Wall Street? That should be their sweet spot. Part of it is certainly Democrats in power, but I think part of it is also that they've become the party of Sarah Palin, not Reagan or Bush Sr.

General disgust

The WaPo has an article looking at the fundraising practices for the RNC and DNC, and concludes that their fundraising overhead is extremely high. (59% for the DNC and 68% for the RNC.)

Now, it's gotta be said that these are not standard non-profits as they do more than just distribue money, and that the parties serve as parking places and resume builders for iinsiders, but for donors, 59% and 68% look pretty damn high when only $3 or $4 of your $10 donation ends up directly in a political race.

(Curious thought: Does this make Michael Steele look better or worse?)

Related: The RNC's Hawaii retreat last quarter cost $430,000 for three days, more than they will dole out to most House races.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Stray thought on the "tea parties."

I probably could have made a fair bit of money selling revolutionary war costumes.....

Department of consumer crap

The FDA is launching a program to reduce the sodium content in processed foods.

And, a lot of institutions are temporarily blocking the Apple IPad because its method of WiFi connection is interfering with other devices.

Right now, the nation of Israel bans IPads, impounding them at the borders.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Crist goes Lieberman - Updated

It looks like Charlie Crist is abandoning the GOP and eyeing an independent run for that Senate seat. He's pulled his TV ads for the primary.

We could actually see a moderate Republican elected this year.

Later: Crist comes out, telling the NYTimes in his own voice that he is "considering" an independent run which means he's already out of the Repub primary.

It's kinda funny that Rubio ran such an effective campaign he probably just cost himself the seat.

All about Sarah

Sarah Palin put the bull's-eye on 20 U.S. House races on her Facebook page last month, but didn't donate to favored candidates in those districts during the first quarter of the year.

Although her SarahPAC took in $400,000 in the first quarter and had more than $900,000 in the bank, it gave only $7,500 to candidates between January and the end of March, plus an additional $2,000 to two other PACs. None went to Republicans in the races she targeted.

Armed and Crazy

If you haven't seen anything on it yet, take a moment to read the WaPo piece on the progun rally to be held just outside Washington. The premise is that these guys are going to show up openly carrying loaded firearms.

As the guys seem kinda nuts and misinformed, they're the freak show for the day, so I'm sure it's going to get alot of press.

Oh, and, holding your gun rally on the anniversary of the Branch Davidian thing and Oklahoma City doesn't really add to your credibility.

(Side Note: I have no basic problem with guns or open carry. In my life I've known several "gun guys" who I would trust to safely own machine guns, RPG's, or whatever if they wanted to.

On the other hand, I'm a big believer in background checks, and, frankly, if you are so insecure you feel the need to carry a gun with you, without cause, everywhere you go, or if you are so willingly paranoid and misinformed to believe that the government is about to forcibly attempt to take everyone's guns, you probably shouldn't be allowed to carry.)

Pick your crazy

Politico did a (pretty non-scientific) poll of the tea partiers, and found they fell almost evenly into two camps, those who aligned with Sarah Pain and those who aligned with Ron Paul.

Frankly, that's two different types, but equivalent levels of crazy, (and we're supposed to listen to these people?)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Retraction (Thanks Anonymous commenter.)

I put up a couple sentences from an article this morning very out of context. It struck me as funny that the sentence was ever even written, but as an anonymous commenter pointed out, it framed some pretty good and brave police work in a very negative light, so, I pulled it down.

My only defense was that it was early and I wasn't fully awake, but still, it was bad judgment on my part.

Sorry to everyone. And thanks to that Anonymous commenter.