Wayne Allard, the retiring Colorado Republican Senator gave his old friend McCain as much cover as he could in McCain's major gaffe over the Colorado River Compact, releasing a letter McCain wrote him, backtracking on his previous statement that the compact should be renegotiated.
"My recent remarks may have been mistakenly construed as a call to rescind the Colorado River Compact and commence negotiations for new water allocations," McCain wrote to Allard. "Let me be clear that I do not advocate renegotiation of the compact."
But Colorado Dems aren't buying it, and the issue remains alive for the Colorado press.
"I think the word, 'renegotiate,' does not have double meaning," Ritter said in a conference call with Salazar and the press on Wednesday. "It is about opening it up and negotiating it again, and the fact that he's willing to do that again has to demonstrate in my mind, given the context of it, a bias for the lower basin states. His desire still to renegotiate it . . . was really pretty direct."...
Ritter said that at best, McCain's letter to Allard showed him "flip-flopping" on the issue.
"The verbiage with The Pueblo Chieftain was very clear," he said. "This is a reversal of direction, but it's a reversal that I think Colorado voters have to pay clear attention to because on the West Slope, I'm not sure there are more important issues than the issue of the scarcity of water."
There really isn't a more important issue for the entire Mountain West region than scarcity of water. The surge of population growth, of new high tech business development, an--critically--energy development all depends on water. McCain's stumble on this isn't the kind of fodder for the national press as his housing crisis, but for Westerners it's just as salient.
And it shows how out of touch he is even in a critical issue for his own state, as his own governor Janet Napolitano pointed out saying "he obviously doesn't know that we actually went in and revised that compact and signed that agreement" in 2007.
Dear Diary,One way or another, I've managed to survive here just short of one year.For one reason or another, someone invited me to publish here. If nothing else, I've done that nearly religiously.[Agenda: Write enough words so that pics of[...]
Read The Full Article:
Okay, can someone explain to me why Biden has not been announced already? Seriously.
What's the point of the timing on this?
This is an Open Thread.
And it's a reminder of what this is all about. No matter who the VP is, this is the most important election of our lives (not just just the lives of the 20 somethings but even the 80 somethings.
Those of us who lived through the 60's are hardwired to expect the worst and to believe that, in the end, the reactionary geezer will win.
But who would have thought Barack Obama would have gotten this far? Not me. But it sure is a privilege to be part of it.
I can confirm that Sen. Obama has not called to tell me that I am not going to be his running mate. I can read the tea leaves as well as anyone, and I think this is pretty conclusive proof that I am not yet out of the running. I've been nothing if not[...]
Read The Full Article:
BY TAYLOR MARSHReporting from Santa Fe, New Mexico This graphic is hilarious and dropped into my email box today. Perfect mood for cocktails tonight on the eve of Obama announcing his veep[...]
Read The Full Article:
Read The Full Article:
Mark Halperin does it again: Two Republicans close to the situation say McCain has apparently settled on Mitt Romney as his running mate. [..]Developing… Nice Drudgian touch at the end, Mark. Of course, Halperin pulled down the page saying that the Veep was going to be Dick Lugar just a little bit before, which [...]
Read The Full Article:
MN-Sen: Meanwhile, another strong poll comes out for Al Franken in Minnesota. This one shows him with a narrow lead over Norm Coleman, in fact. From the University of Minnesota/Humphrey Institute:
Franken (D) 41
Coleman (R) 40
Barkley (I) 8
They polled this race in January, a sufficient enough span of time that I didn't bother to include trendlines. This is also one of the first polls to include the independent candidate (former interim Senator Dean Barkley).
Franken has now shown positive movement in SurveyUSA's latest poll, and with this one coupled with the Rasmussen polling (which has consistently shown a tight race), he may well be closing Coleman's substantial lead.
Here's Franken's new TV ad. It's quite witty:
MS-Sen: So since the U.S. Senate race in Mississippi, pitting Democratic former Governor Ronnie Musgrove against interim GOP Senator Roger Wicker, looks like it will be the closest Senate race in Mississippi in at least twenty years, the Justice Department and Musgrove critics are attempting to tie him to a federal case against former employees of the Mississippi Beef Plant.
Turns out that the U.S. Attorney prosecuting the race is a Roger Wicker donor.
Posted on the Harper’s magazine Web site Wednesday night is a column by Scott Horton, who writes about the contribution and questions whether this new phase of the beef plant case has taken a political turn.
"Wicker has a very powerful ally. His name is Jim Greenlee, and he is a prior donor to Wicker's congressional campaign," Horton writes. "Curiously, Greenlee neglected to note his position when he made the donation. He is the U.S. Attorney appointed by President Bush in northern Mississippi. But as the campaign season opens in earnest, it seems that no one is providing Wicker's campaign with more valuable support than Greenlee."
Horton prefaces those statements with this:
"Washington pundits anticipate significant Democratic pick-ups in the upcoming senate races in which a largely Republican class faces a hostile electorate. One of the surprising vulnerabilities for the Republicans is in Mississippi. Senator Trent Lott resigned his seat before his term expired, with his resignation closely linked in time to the announcement of charges against his brother-in-law Dickie Scruggs. To fill out the remaining year of Lott’s term, Governor Hailey Barbour tapped Roger Wicker, who is now seeking to win the seat in his own right. He's being challenged by former Governor Ronnie Musgrove, who is given strong odds at picking off the seat for the Democrats."
Given the history of Bush's Justice Department engaging in politically motivated investigations (shades of Don Siegelman), this seems like yet another dirty trick.
Meanwhile, the Mississippi Secretary of State clearly fears the potential effect that new voters will have on the Senate race: he wants to move the U.S. Senate matchup to the bottom of the ballot.
Phillips told The Associated Press on Thursday that he's concerned the state Board of Election Commissioners, made up of two Republicans and one Democrat, will recommend that local officials put the Musgrove-Wicker contest at the very bottom of the Nov. 4 ballot.
Phillips said such a decision could mean that "tens of thousands of falloff voters would not vote," in the U.S. Senate race and he believes that would hurt Musgrove, a former governor.
Phillips said he has received two informal opinions from Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann's office in the past few weeks suggesting that Hosemann might recommend putting the Musgrove-Wicker race at the end of the ballot, after contests for the state Court of Appeals.
History shows there is typically a significant drop-off in the number of Mississippians who vote in top-of-the-ticket races such as president and senator and those who vote in races further down the ballot, where the candidates might be less familiar.
ME-Sen: Democrat Tom Allen is on the air with a 60-second bio ad:
NV-02: Terrific poll out of Nevada's difficult Second District, where Democrat Jill Derby came within five points of beating Republican Dean Heller in their 2006 race.
This was the closest result since the district was created in 1982.
Not much has changed since that time, despite Heller now enjoying the power of incumbency. From Research 2000:
Heller (R) 47
Derby (D) 42
Sven at My Silver State has a nice interview with Jill Derby here. Derby talks about the differences between her 2006 ace, and this one:
There are two significant differences in this race that make it winnable. The first is a fundamental change in partisanship in the Second Congressional District, as indicated by a remarkable shift in registration. Since the 2006 election, the Republican registration advantage has been cut by 40%, more than 18,000 voters. This is more than 50% greater than Dean Heller's margin of victory in 2006.
The second difference is Dean Heller's record. Nevada voters want an independent voice in Washington, a voice that will stand up for Nevadans, not one that will not march in lockstep with a party. Dean Heller has instead decided to be a rubber stamp for a failed GOP agenda, voting 92% of the time with President Bush. He has taken tens of thousands of dollars from Big Oil while voting against renewables and real opportunities to lower gas prices, such as releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. He voted against SCHIP, preventing 70,000 children in Nevada from receiving much-needed health care. He voted against pay equity for women (H.R. 2831, the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act ).He voted against reinvigorating the GI Bill to give our veterans an opportunity to get the education they deserve.
Derby's running in a very tough district, but it seems she has a realistic chance at pulling off the upset.
CA-11: Very bad news for the GOP: even their very strongest recruits are struggling, according to the Cook Political Report.
State Assemblyman Dean Andal was considered one of the most dangerous GOP candidates this cycle, as he sought to take out freshman Democratic Rep. Jerry McNerney. Cook had rated this race a tossup, but it seems that as Andal has become enmeshed in scandal over the past few months (surprise, surprise), his chances are no longer quite so good. Cook has moved the race to "Leans Democratic":
Although this race is still likely to be very competitive, evidence suggests freshman Democratic Rep. Jerry McNerney's prospects of coming back to Washington have improved a bit over the past several months. Not only has former GOP Assemblyman Dean Andal turned in several sub-par fundraising quarters in a row, but he has also spent a lot of the last month on the defensive, answering questions about his role as a consultant for a community college development project.
In June, a San Joaquin civil grand jury report took the San Joaquin Delta College Board of Trustees to task for misappropriation of a $250 million public grant to build a new campus. The report said board members violated the law by leaking information from their deliberations on the location of the campus to a developer, PCCP Mountain House LLC. The report alleged that PCCP's consultant, quickly revealed to be Andal, improperly used his knowledge of the closed-session deliberations to lobby board members to pursue a more expensive location to develop.
Andal has denied ever having improper conversations, but the story has lent Democrats new ammunition for ads. The DCCC was already planning on defining Andal before Andal or his allies could take to the air, and they were planning to portray his legislative voting record as quixotically libertarian. Now, they will be hitting Andal from a few different angles, and environmental groups have expressed interest in piling on by making Andal the same kind of target they made former GOP Rep. Richard Pombo in 2006.
Even the GOP's best hopes for the House are really rather dim.
AZ-08: Another top GOP recruit, Arizona Senate President Tim Bee, is coming under plenty of fire for apparently declining to reimburse the city of Tucson for nearly $100,000 in expenses caused by the Decider's recent visit.
Bush came to town and raised $600,000 for Bee at a swanky private event...but Bee apparently thinks that the cost of this visit should be borne by the taxpayers.
Bee's congressional campaign won't repay the Pima County Sheriff's and Tucson Police departments for the $99,000 they spent while enabling his $600,000 campaign haul.
When President Bush came to Tucson on Bee's behalf July 17-18, some 165 police officers and 161 sheriff's deputies were deployed to help ensure the president's safety, as reported Tuesday by Tucson Citizen political reporter Blake Morlock.
That's money well spent; law enforcement in the Old Pueblo always rises to the occasion to help protect presidents and other dignitaries.
But this visit by the president was for a purely private party in a then-undisclosed Catalina foothills home, for select guests only and for one purpose only: To raise money for Bee's campaign to unseat U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in southern Arizona's 8th Congressional District.
It should be noted that when President Clinton came to Tucson on behalf of Giffords in 2006, he held an event open to the public.
WI-08: Meanwhile, Republican congressional candidate John Gard features in Keith Olbermann's "Worst Person in the World" segment:
That's how many times richer John McCain is than Barack Obama. And yet McCain claims Obama is the one who's too rich and out of touch?
John McCain's confusion continues. No wonder he doesn't even know how many homes he owns.