Politico explains that it was Biden's snafu on Sunday, and the White House Press Corps subsequently eating White House spokesman Jay Carney for lunch, that spurred the President to act now:In the end, people close to the president say, it wasn?t a close call: The core of their argument against Mitt Romney is that he is an untrustworthy politician with no real core of conviction. Obama?s...
The extreme right-wing victor in Tuesday's Republican primary in Indiana, Dick Mourdock, was interviewed the following morning by Chuck Todd on MSNBC. ?I certainly think bipartisanship ought to consist of Democrats coming to the Republican point of view." That point of view isn't out of step with the standard, garden variety Republican line and it's certainly the operating principle by which Miss McConnell and his cronies have obstructed virtually everything Obama and the Democrats have tried to do in the past three years. Making the government into a farce plays into their thesis that government is bad and should be shrunk, made impotent and drowned in a bathtub. They don't want government having the ability to protect ordinary people from the deprecations of financial and ecological predators and other Republican Party financiers. The last votes in Indiana hadn't been counted when the Democratic Party-- many of whom take the same bribes from the same predatory special interests-- wasn't already trying to capitalize on Mourdock's extremism. This is a letter Guy Cecil, Executive Director of the DSCC sent out immediately:
Meet the next Ken Buck-- Indiana Republican Senate nominee Richard Mourdock.
By defeating Dick Lugar and nominating Richard Mourdock, the Tea Party has done it again, handing another strong pick-up opportunity to Democrats.
Like Ken Buck, Richard Mourdock is another right wing extremist who is too far out of the mainstream for independent voters.
This is what Senator Lugar had to say about Richard Mourdock last night:He and I share many positions, but his embrace of an unrelenting partisan mindset is irreconcilable with my philosophy of governance and my experience of what brings results for Hoosiers in the Senate. In effect, what he has promised in this campaign is reflexive votes for a rejectionist orthodoxy and rigid opposition to the actions and proposals of the other party. His answer to the inevitable roadblocks he will encounter in Congress is merely to campaign for more Republicans who embrace the same partisan outlook. He has pledged his support to groups whose prime mission is to cleanse the Republican party of those who stray from orthodoxy as they see it.
Today there are tens of thousands of disillusioned Hoosiers who have supported Dick Lugar their entire voting lives and are likely dismayed by the polarizing, extreme forces that defeated him. While Richard Mourdock is poorly positioned to appeal to these voters, Joe Donnelly is exactly the kind of reasonable, honest, job-focused, centrist these voters have always supported.
In 2010, I served as Chief of Staff to Senator Michael Bennet of Colorado, and saw firsthand how Ken Buck?s extremist ideology was rejected by independent voters after his divisive GOP primary. Buck spent weeks trying to untie himself from his previous statements and positions, but the voters in Colorado knew better -- and so will the voters of Indiana.
Like Buck, Mourdock already possess a long rap sheet of misstatements and Tea Party positions that will offend independent voters.
· Mourdock spent $2 million of taxpayer money on a lawsuit that could have endangered 124,000 Indiana jobs-- including 4,000 high paying jobs in Kokomo, Indiana-- by killing the Chrysler?s bankruptcy restructuring. Mourdock called the lawsuit his ?Rosa Parks moment." Mourdock?s Tea Party opposition to the entire auto industry rescue could have cost the state 140,000 jobs in total.
· In his defense, Mourdock says, ?I didn't take a pledge that I would support every job in Indiana under whatever means it takes to do it.?
· Mourdock says that ?I think there needs to be more partisanship? in Washington.
· Mourdock has questioned the constitutionality of Social Security and Medicare.
We?ve seen this movie before, but you don't have to take my word for it. Even Senator Lugar recognizes that Mourdock is a flawed candidate with extreme views, specifically saying ?Democrats understand Joe Donnelly will beat Richard Mourdock.? Or, as one Lugar supporter said in an ad warning seniors about Mourdock?s position on Social Security ? one that calls for $2,500 cuts in annual benefits-- ?Heaven help us-- ?cause Mourdock won?t.?
Meanwhile, Joe Donnelly has always had broad appeal with independents. Donnelly was reelected in a Republican-leaning district in 2010 even though the National Republican Congressional Committee and their Republican allies spent more than $2 million trying to defeat him. In fact, Donnelly survived the Republican wave last cycle despite being an original member of the NRCC?s 2010 target list.
POLLING TODAY: Polling shows that Donnelly starts off with a six point lead against Tea Partier Mourdock.
Donnelly leads Mourdock, 34 to 28. While both candidates still have low name ID, Donnelly already has significant leads with important swing voting blocs that make up the undecided vote, including women, seniors and independents.
· Donnelly leads by 10 among women
· Donnelly leads by 7 among seniors
· Donnelly leads by 8 among independents
Last night?s results make Indiana a prime pick up opportunity for Democrats. There are a lot of longtime Lugar supporters waking up this morning and looking for a mainstream moderate. Richard Mourdock?s ideological extremism doesn't fit the bill. Joe Donnelly does.
Welcome to ThinkProgress Economy?s morning link roundup. This is what we?re reading. Have you seen any interesting news? Let us know in the comments section. You can also follow ThinkProgress Economy on Twitter.
Welcome to The Morning Pride, ThinkProgress LGBT?s daily round-up of the latest in LGBT policy, politics, and some culture too! Here?s what we?re reading this morning, but please let us know what stories you?re following as well. Follow us all day on Twitter at @TPEquality.
- Equality opponents may claim a victory in North Carolina this week, but Amendment One passed with the lowest percentage of the vote of all southern state marriage amendments.
- Those opposed to Washington’s new marriage equality law have collected 70,000 of the 120,577 signatures necessary to challenge the law at the ballot, but they have only a month to collect the rest.
- Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) remains confident that voters in his state would support marriage equality in a referendum.
- The Indiana PTA Conference has adopted an anti-bullying policy to protect LGBT students.
- The Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that employers are liable if they fail to protect employees from harassment based on their sexual orientation.
- A California massage clinic hired and fired a trans teen in the same day.
- After seven years since its original introduction, Chile has finally approved a hate crimes law that protects against anti-gay violvence.
- Why are gay men always associated with limp wrists?
- Representatives from the Family Equality Council, including several same-sex families, helped close the New York Stock Exchange yesterday:
A round-up of the top climate and energy stories. Please post other links below.
Hurricane Irene, which first made landfall in North Carolina on August 27, and went on to cause devastating flooding in several Northeastern states, is now ranked as the costliest Category One storm to strike the U.S. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Irene caused $15.8 billion in damage, much of it due to inland flooding. [Climate Central]
With a simple statement on Tuesday, State Farm Insurance became the latest company to withdraw its support from the Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based think-tank which claims a ?realist? position questioning that humans are responsible for climate change. [LA Times]
Alec Loorz turns 18 at the end of this month. While finishing high school and playing Ultimate Frisbee on weekends, he’s also suing the federal government in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. over climate change. [Atlantic]
The optimism that fuelled hopes of CCS driving deep carbon cuts has stalled. The infant industry was knocked off course by the world economic crisis that dragged urgency about global warming down with it, and made money hard to come by. [Guardian]
A coalition of upstate New York landowners seeking to lease land for natural gas drilling pressed state officials Wednesday to consider the rights of property owners as they make decisions on shale gas development. [Associated Press]
Former General Motors vice chairman Bob Lutz thinks pushing back against right-wing criticism of the Chevrolet Volt had an effect. Conservatives are starting to see the benefits of electric cars, he says. And he notes that he, too, is a conservative. [USA Today]
A one degree celsius rise in temperature associated with increase in carbon dioxide in atmosphere could hit wheat production in India unless “adaptation” strategies are adopted, according to a government report on climate change. [The Economic Times]
Old divisions between developed and developing countries in who should lead the fight against climate change should be laid aside, according to ministers from some of the world’s poorest countries and European representatives meeting on Tuesday. [Guardian]
The House of Representatives passed a measure reinforcing the Defense of Marriage Act, just hours after President Obama announced his support for marriage equality. In a vote of 245 to 171, the members “voted to stop the Justice Department from using taxpayer funds to actively oppose DOMA ? the Clinton-era law defining marriage as between a man and a woman that the Obama administration stopped enforcing in February 2011.” Sixteen Democrats voted in favor of the measure, while 7 Republicans opposed it. Among its many negative consequences, DOMA has denied federal benefits to same-sex couples and their families. House Republicans, however, have defended its constitutionality in 12 separate cases.
Health insurance companies owe tens of millions to Florida policy holders after they failed to meet an Affordable Care Act provision that limits the amount of premium dollars that insurers can spend on overhead. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation report, Floridians could receive up to $149 million in rebates this summer, even though political officials in the state oppose the law as a whole and had asked the federal government for less stringent requirements that would have likely reduced the rebate amounts. In January, the federal government denied the state’s request.
I always enjoy reading Clive Thompson’s columns at Wired, so it was fun to see him defend fan fiction in those pages this week:
Why would worldplay make you more creative in your career? Probably because, as the Root-Bernsteins point out, it requires practical creativity. Fleshing out a universe demands not just imagination but an attention to detail, consistency, rule sets, and logic. You have to grapple with constraints ? just as when you?re problem-solving at work.
This is why I?m so bullish about our teeming world of participatory fan culture. We live in a golden age of paracosmic play. As fandom scholars like blogger and USC professor Henry Jenkins have documented, today?s young people routinely build off their favorite cultural universes ? writing new stories, creating game mods, shooting fan videos. It?s not sui generis creativity ? they?re working with preexisting worlds ? but it exercises the same creative muscles. I suspect society will reap the benefits in decades to come.
I’m of several minds about this. There’s no question that fan fiction’s been a valuable platform for authors like Cassandra Clare, whose Mortal Instruments fantasy series is about to be a big-budget movie, or E.L. James, whose Fifty Shades of Grey started out as Twilight fan fiction and has become a smash that’s headed for a film adaptation of its own, to cut their teeth before putting their work up for sale. Like most of us, I get a lot of joy out of mashups and supercuts and remakes, which can be acts of analysis and criticism as much as they’re works of art. And I’ve read After the End, a novel-length sequel to the Harry Potter franchise more times than I am actually willing to admit publicly.
But I’m genuinely curious about the effects of creating a world as opposed to playing in a world created and governed by someone else. Does the impact of the kind of creative work Thompson is talking about come from playing with the characters, or creating the boundaries and rules and keeping track of them yourself? Is there a difference between the maintenance of a private universe that you have to sell other people on, and participating in an established fandom where everyone is on board with not just the rules of the world but the broad riffs on it that most people participate in? I think it’s silly to denigrate people who write fan fiction or read it, but I’m also curious about it as a specific phenomenon, how it intersects with the rise of self-publishing and the decline of book editors, and what it means that we want to spend so much time in these fictional worlds not of our own creations.
Cross posted from The Stars Hollow GazetteThis is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.Find the past "On This Day in History" here.Click on images to enlargeMay 10 is the 130th day of the[...]
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Cross posted from The Stars Hollow GazetteIt will be a Democratic Congress and President that will destroy the social safety. Ryan Grimm at Huffington Post reports that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi supports the Simpson-Bowles plan:During a recent[...]
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