Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘premature victory laps

Wednesday Links: Breaking Bad, Divine Justice, Fake Vaccines, and More

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* Just got an email alert from CNN: there appear to have been another set of terror attacks in Mumbai. Very sad news.

* Drug trials in Africa show two AIDS prevention drugs are apparently successful in preventing the spread of the disease.

* And the inevitable dark reflection of the previous link: The headline reads, “CIA used a fake vaccination campaign in hunt for Bin Laden.”

* Justice is sweet: News Corp. has lost $7B in the last four days, shareholders are furious, and Lautenberg is joining the call for DOJ and SEC investigations into Murdoch’s empire.

* ThinkProgress: Meet The Indonesian Workers Who Make Your Nikes.

* Reduce the deficit by stopping building pointless superweapons we can never use.

* Premature victory lap watch: Obama for America raked in $86 million for the last quarter, crushing the GOP. The bulk of the money came from small donors.

* Chuck Klosterman: Why AMC’s Breaking Bad beats Mad MenThe Sopranos, and The Wire.

* And RSA Animate explains why there’s no empathy in Heaven, or in Utopia:

GOP Outmaneuvered, Raising the White Flag?

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The harsh words I had for Obama in the previous post may have to be revisited if this report from TPM is accurate: But Senate Minority Leader has just suggested the GOP will give President Obama his debt limit increase without any spending cuts with a legislative maneuver that in essence allows Republicans to say it’s all Obama’s fault.

UPDATE: Grassroots and activist conservatives are freaking out, but elites (Grover Norquist!) are on board.

UPDATE 2: David Kurtz: Time for Obama to declare victory.

The Republicans via Mitch McConnell just balked in an epic, paradigm-shifting way that could finally shift the long-moldering debate on fiscal policy. The debt ceiling negotiations have revealed one of the bedrock foundational elements of the GOP platform — spending cuts are the only way to balance the budget — to be built on the shifting sands of political expediency.

Obama needs to quickly move to declare victory in this thirty-year debate on taxes. Do it now, with the biggest, wickedest grin he can muster while Republicans are in disarray fighting amongst themselves.

The curtain has been pulled back. The wizard has been revealed as a small insecure man. But in Washington no one will acknowledge even a seminal moment unless you grab ahold of it and declare it as such.

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July 12, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Select Links While I’m Away (Part 1)

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Permanent Democratic Majority

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No Democratic incumbent has been voted out of the Senate in the last two cycles, the first time this has been accomplished since the direct election of senators was established in 1908. MyDD asks the obvious question: can the Dems three-peat? The prognosis is good, as only Nevada’s Harry Reid seems especially vulnerable and his state just went blue.

Meanwhile, Salon has tough talk for the GOP.

The painful truth for conservatives is that the dogs aren’t eating their dog food — and every national trend indicates that they will never eat it again. Which means the GOP faces a wrenching choice: remain true to its increasingly irrelevant and rejected ideology and fade into political insignificance, or remake itself as essentially a more moderate version of the Democratic Party.

In the coming years we will witness a war between conservatism’s pragmatists and its true believers. If the pragmatists win, America will have finally arrived at the era of broad political consensus that pundits erroneously forecast after Lyndon Johnson’s demolition of Barry Goldwater in 1964. If the true believers win, we may witness a Palin candidacy in 2012 — and a likely electoral landslide that will bury the GOP so deeply it may never dig out.

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November 11, 2008 at 3:30 am


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The final SurveyUSA polls predict Obama victories in Pennsylvania and Florida, a loss in either of which probably spells the end for John McCain.

PA: Obama 52%, McCain 43%
FL: Obama 50%, McCain 47%

Meanwhile, the Huffington Post says “When it comes to predicting elections, head down to your local betting hall and talk to some gamblers. They have a much better record at forecasting elections.” As of right now, the bookies put the odds at a 93-7 Obama advantage…

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November 4, 2008 at 4:38 am

Prediction Thread

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Predictions. Who’s got them? Leave ’em in the comments.

I was on Poli-Sci-Fi Radio yesterday (podcast forthcoming) and they cajoled us all into making predictions. Unexpectedly, I was among the most optimistic people on the show, expecting Obama to cross 360 electoral votes and over 50% in the popular vote. I stand by this. To the extent that the polls are wrong, I (honestly) believe they will be wrong in our favor, underreporting Obama’s depth of support and his GOTV operation and underestimating the level of Republican demoralization and widespread discomfort, in different registers, with Bush, Palin, and McCain all.

I’ve been predicting / hoping for a Reaganesque landslide since January—it was one of the biggest early factors in my decision to support Obama in the primaries in the first place—and I think that outcome is finally at hand. If things go the way I think / hope they will tomorrow, 2008 will come to be seen as a realignment election along the lines of 1980 or 1932.

If I’m wrong, I’m wrong, and I’ve been very wrong before—but that’s my prediction.

So let’s have two numbers, the EV spread and the popular vote spread. (Use 270towin to calculate the electoral votes.)

I’ll go first with what will surely be way-too-high estimates of 397 EVs and eight points in the popular vote, 52%-44%. In my heart of hearts, I think we’ll run the table, including taking Omaha.

But of course I’ll be just as happy scrapping by with 269…

Sports Determinism Watch

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Sports Determinism Watch: The Phillies only win the Series during realignment elections. That’s not me talking, that’s science.

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October 30, 2008 at 6:36 pm

Sunday Politics

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Sunday politics.

* Conservative stalwart David Frum throws in the towel on John McCain.

In these last days before the vote, Republicans need to face some strategic realities. Our resources are limited, and our message is failing. We cannot fight on all fronts. We are cannibalizing races that we must win and probably can win in order to help a national campaign that is almost certainly lost. In these final 10 days, our goal should be: senators first.

* Kos wonders who, if anyone, will be the Howard Dean of the right.

* The Field posits that Chicago is the ideal location from which to launch a presidential campaign.

Surrounding Senator Obama’s state of Illinois and its 21 Electoral Votes are three states won by George W. Bush four years ago: Indiana and Missouri (each with 11 EVs), and Iowa (7 EVs). The McCain-Palin ticket has made multiple visits to those and other surrounding states that it claimed would be in play: Michigan (17), Wisconsin (10) and Minnesota (10), where the Republicans held their national convention last month.

Chicago may just be the best city in the country to base your presidential campaign – in terms of the Electoral College – if you count with a cadre of well-trained organizers and volunteers ready to travel a short ways to register voters, knock on doors and help get out the vote in the neighboring swing states: Add 39 contiguous Electoral Votes in play and another 27 in battleground states close enough for day trips, and the region holds a whopping electoral prize of 87 EVs. That’s more than the 73 on the West Coast or the 74 in Greater NY (with PA, NJ and CT).

* And Sir Charles of Cogitamus alongside the New York Times’s “Week in Review” explores the “disastrous demographic bets” the Republican Party has made, bringing us to the point where even an eventual Whig-like implosion does not seem outside the realm of possibility…

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October 26, 2008 at 4:19 pm

Bob Barr for President

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“Senator John McCain will not win Georgia,” predicts Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party nominee for president. “His shrinking poll numbers are an indication that McCain is losing touch with the American public as we get closer to November 4th.”

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October 25, 2008 at 4:09 pm

Landslide Watch, Georgia Edition

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Landslide watch: InsiderAdvantage puts Obama up by a point in Georgia.

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October 24, 2008 at 2:42 pm

The Triumph of Fake Virginia

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Larry Sabato writes the McCain campaign appears to have had a “death wish” in Virginia.

Of the two shifts, by far the most significant is VIRGINIA, which we are moving from pure toss-up to LEANS OBAMA. We have been very cautious about the Old Dominion, in part because it’s been our home for the better part of six decades. More than most, we know how tough this state can be for a Democratic presidential candidate. But while we continue to disbelieve the national polls showing Obama winning Virginia by 10 percentage points, we now believe that Obama has built a small edge of two or three points in the state. The reasons are clear: Bush, the disastrous economy, the demographic growth of Northern Virginia and its strong Democratic tilt, the momentum built up by recent Democratic victories (Mark Warner in 2001 and soon 2008, Tim Kaine in 2005, and Jim Webb in 2006), and the remarkable voter registration and voter contact efforts of a literal army of Obama staffers and volunteers in the state for a full year.

But it is more than that. The McCain campaign and the state GOP appear to have had a death wish. McCain’s staff refused to believe Virginia was truly competitive for too long, and the McCain-Palin visits were few. McCain’s brother called Northern Virginians “Commies” and one of McCain’s most prominent spokespersons said they were not the “real Virginia.” Generally, it is difficult to win the votes of people you are insulting.

The Virginia Republican party is also completely outclassed by the state’s Democrats in money and organization. The GOP is being run by a very young, fire-breathing chairman who publicly drew an absurd link between Barack Obama and Osama bin Laden–drawing angry rebukes from the top echelon of the McCain campaign as well as virtually all the senior Republican elected officials in the state. Republicans in Virginia have simply not adapted to the new moderate reality of this Mid-Atlantic state, the twelfth largest in the nation. They insist on running too far to the right, as though this were the Virginia of the Old South. It’s not selling anymore.

Sabato’s crystal ball also moves North Dakota to “toss-up” this week.

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October 23, 2008 at 12:59 pm

We Can’t Really Be This Far Ahead, Can We?

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The Quinnipiac and Big 10 Battleground polls have terrible news for McCaniacs. We can’t really be this far ahead, can we? Via Daily Kos.

The highlights:

Florida (Quinnipiac)
Obama 49
McCain 44

Indiana (Big 10)
Obama 51
McCain 41

Ohio (Big 10)
Obama 53
McCain 41

Ohio (Quinnippiac):
Obama 52
McCain 38

Pennsylvania (Big 10)
Obama 52
McCain 41

Pennsylvania (Quinnippiac)
Obama 53
McCain 40

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October 23, 2008 at 12:45 pm

Six Reasons Obama Will Win

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Six reasons Obama will win at National Journal Online, via

1. No candidate this far back two weeks out has ever won.
2. Early voting is going strong and even if something big happens, those votes are already cast.
3. The Democrats have a 10% advantage in party registration; in 2004 it was even.
4. Obama is outspending McCain 4 to 1 in many states.
5. There is no evidence for the so-called Bradley effect in the past 15 years.
6. Obama is safe in all the Kerry states and ahead in half a dozen states Bush won.

I remember the glorious afternoon and heartbreaking evening of November 2, 2004, well enough to know not to count America’s chickens before they come home to roost.

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October 22, 2008 at 4:33 pm

Victory Watch

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October 21, 2008 at 4:54 pm

Landslide Watch, North Carolina Edition

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Landslide watch, North Carolina edition.

Across the state, Democrats showed the most first-day enthusiasm. Of the nearly 114,000 first-day voters, 64 percent were Democrats, 21 percent Republicans and 15 percent unaffiliateds.

African American turnout was up significantly. Black voters, who make up about 22 percent of registered voters, were 36 percent of Thursday’s early voters.

In 2004, blacks made up 18.6 percent of voters.

Details on where and how to early vote in Durham here.


The number shattered the previous record by about 40 percent, said Gary Bartlett, executive director of the State Board of Elections.

“We were expecting long lines from the beginning,” Bartlett said. “I do not think it will thin out. I think it will increase, especially during the last week and a half. I believe that there will be continuous lines.”

In Wake County, 7,917 people cast ballots Thursday, including 2,088 at Cary Town Center and 1,975 at Triangle Town Center. Lines snaked around both malls, as people waited for up to 30 minutes to vote, officials said.

Durham County elections officials said 6,264 votes were cast Thursday, up 40 percent from the highest daily total in 2004.

Better still are these numbers from a Daily Kos diary:

Unaffiliated 15.50%
Republican 20.26%
Libertarian 0.05%
Democratic 64.41%

Unaffiliated 12.23%
Republican 38.35%
Libertarian 0.15%
Democratic 49.21%

Written by gerrycanavan

October 18, 2008 at 5:37 pm