The Texas Primary was originally scheduled for Super Tuesday (March 6th), and if it had been held on that day it might have had a significant effect on the current Republican campaign (because Texas has an enormous 155 delegates at stake). But the Texas primary had to be delayed, because the Republican legislature over-reached in it's effort to create safe new GOP districts (denying minorities the new districts they were entitled to have).
That caused the redistricting effort to be tied up in a lengthy court battle, which still has not been settled. Finally, a federal court in San Antonio drew its own districts (good only for this year's elections) so the primary could be scheduled and held. That primary is now scheduled for May 29th. This was a disappointment for Republicans, because they thought the May 29th date would be too late for them to have a voice in the Republican presidential nomination race.
After Tuesday's results (where Romney finished third in both Alabama and Mississippi, and had to split Hawaii's delegates with his opponents), that may not be true. It's looking like the GOP race will be a long one, and Texas might be optimally-placed on May 29th to make a big difference in who gets the nomination. Of course, this brings up the question of just who the Texas Republicans will support.
Two days ago, the Rasmussen Poll published their latest survey of Texas Republicans -- and that survey showed Willard Mitt Romney (aka Wall Street Willie) as the leader in Texas. Here are their numbers:
RASMUSSEN POLL (Texas)
Having been born and raised in Texas (and still live there), I find that hard to believe -- for a couple of reasons. First, the Texas Republican Party is composed of mainly teabaggers and evangelicals (groups that Romney has yet to win over). It much more closely resembles the party in states like Mississippi, Alabama, Oklahoma, and South Carolina than it does the party in states Romney has done well in (like New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Nevada).
Second, there are two other polls that show Santorum with a good lead. And both those polls show the Santorum lead exceeds the margin of error (while the Romney lead in Rasmussen is within the margin of error). Here are those polls -- one released on February 20th and the second on March 14th.
TEXAS TRIBUNE/UNIV. OF TEXAS POLL (February)
WPA RESEARCH POLL (March)
Wall Street Willie will get some Texas delegates (because they are awarded proportionally and he will top the 15% threshold), but he will not finish in first place in Texas -- unless he somehow clinches the nomination before Texas votes (and that is not likely).
Read The Full Article:
Political Cartoon is by Joe Heller in the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
Read The Full Article:
The wonderful organization called Emily's List is dedicated to electing more progressive women to all levels of government. It is a very worthy goal and I support their efforts (and if you have a few extra dollars, they would put it to good use). That's why it comes as no surprise that they are upset (like all decent people are) about the recent Republican ramping-up of the war on women. Over at their blog, one of their writers (Allison McQuade) has written a piece about the 10 most egregious attacks on women's rights in the last few months. I thought it was excellent, and repost their list here:
Here are our Top 10 Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Attacks on Women?s Rights (just in the last 6 months!)
Political Cartoon is by Chan Lowe in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
Read The Full Article:
Considering that Goldman Sachs alums live inside the Obama administration and help run our entire financial system, the bombshell yesterday will be talked about for weeks.
Here’s an excerpt from the op-ed appearing in yesterday’s New York Times:
What are three quick ways to become a leader? a) Execute on the firm?s ?axes,? which is Goldman-speak for persuading your clients to invest in the stocks or other products that we are trying to get rid of because they are not seen as having a lot of potential profit. b) ?Hunt Elephants.? In English: get your clients ? some of whom are sophisticated, and some of whom aren?t ? to trade whatever will bring the biggest profit to Goldman. Call me old-fashioned, but I don?t like selling my clients a product that is wrong for them. c) Find yourself sitting in a seat where your job is to trade any illiquid, opaque product with a three-letter acronym. – Why I Am Leaving Goldman Sachs, by Greg Smith
The video above is from Think Progress, who captured the financial cable yakkers having a conniption that someone could actually blow the whistle on the immoral capitalistic, self-serving greed that he personally witnessed at Goldman.
Nobody is surprised, except maybe Tim Geithner, who never thought anyone in The Death Star would become a whistleblower.
There’s no money in it.
Bashar al-Assad took advice from Iran on how to handle the uprising against his rule, according to a cache of what appear to be several thousand emails received and sent by the Syrian leader and his wife.As is usually the case in these situations the initial disclosures mostly confirm what we already knew but besides the thuggery and the bragging there is the banality of the wife's demands for crystal chandeliers and fondue sets in the midst of a civil war.
The Syrian leader was also briefed in detail about the presence of western journalists in the Baba Amr district of Homs and urged to "tighten the security grip" on the opposition-held city in November.
The revelations are contained in more than 3,000 documents that activists say are emails downloaded from private accounts belonging to Assad and his wife Asma.
Son of Dave -- Hellhound live at Union Chapel, Islington, London.[...]
Read The Full Article:
As you can see by the above graphic from The Washington Post, about 7 out of 10 Americans would like for super-PACs to be outlawed. They are unhappy with the way they are perverting our electoral system (by giving the rich a much bigger voice in who gets elected). It's time for our politicians to step up and get this done. Do we want to live in a democracy (where everyone has a voice) or in a plutocracy (where only the rich get a say in government)?
Read The Full Article:
Blue America is concerned about every congressional seat in the country but PA-17 is especially important for a few reasons. For one, it's the only realistic shot to replace an incumbent Blue Dog, with a progressive champion. This cycle. The race pits our friend Matt Cartwright against corrupt reactionary Tim Holden. Holden has voted more frequently with Boehner and Cantor against core Democratic issues and principles than almost any other Democrat in Congress. But there are two more reasons. I used to live in Stroudsburg in Monroe County, now part of this district and I love the beautiful part of the state and the wonderful people who live there. And then there's Matt Cartwright himself... an extraordinary candidate committed to the values that have always animated DWT and Blue America.
Yesterday the state legislature in Harrisburg passed Act 13-- an ironically numbered bill... unlucky for everyone in the Commonwealth. As you may know, Holden has been one of the few Democrats in Congress to help the GOP with their fracking agenda and to work to allow drilling in the national parks. We asked Matt to give us his read of what happened yesterday in the legislature and how this kind of bill could have passed in a state like Pennsylvania.
I was dismayed when I read about Act 13, and I agree with the Sierra Club?s nickname for this bill. The Republicans running state government in Pennsylvania are so completely given over to the notion that out-of-state fracking companies represent economic salvation that they seem to have taken leave of their senses. It?s not only that they?ve stripped communities and municipalities of all control over local zoning. It?s also painfully obvious that Pennsylvania is getting next to nothing in return.
Think about it. Taking away local control of zoning, in the name of preventing any community objections to fracking operations, means that the people in charge of deciding whether fracking can occur locally will never be the people who have to live nearby, the people whose water wells are most at risk for contamination. The people who have most to lose have the least say. It makes no sense at all, and it flies in the face of hundreds of years of zoning practice and tradition. That local citizens can no longer show up at local zoning variance hearings to give voice to their concerns about their families? safety and the water purity on their land-- but must now hire attorneys to file suit in Commonwealth Court, in Harrisburg-- this is nothing less than an un- American assault on property rights.
In return for relinquishing these rights, what do Pennsylvanians receive?
Jobs? Everyone living in northeastern Pennsylvania knows that the great bulk of the jobs created by the fracking boom consists of jobs given to oil and gas workers from out of state. Thousands and thousands of license plates on pickup trucks from southern and western states are silent testimony to that. The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Airport parking lot is always filled, not with the vehicles of the people whose aquifers are endangered, but with those of the faraway workers who got these jobs. Where is the evidence that tens of thousands of local jobs are being created, so as to justify this Harrisburg kowtow to the fracking companies?
Tax revenues? Why is it necessary that Pennsylvania apply one of the lowest environmental impact fees in the nation to fracking companies? Enormous fortunes are being made on the gas. Charging an impact fee that is one of the lowest in the country makes no sense when there is no evidence that there truly is a ?race to the bottom? going on.
Few people are saying that fracking should be permanently banned, as it is in France. Instead, people are saying, ?this gas has been there for ages. Given the clear risks of groundwater contamination, why the rush now?? Clearly, the right approach is to make deliberate, sensible assessments of the risks and benefits involved. I am not convinced that that has been done. Considering the risks to the aquifers, streams and rivers of Pennsylvania, I believe that moving forward with Act 13, while drowning out the cries of local townspeople, truly is a form of madness.