Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 10/20-22. Likely voters. MoE ±5% (no trendlines).
McCaul (R-inc) 46
Doherty (D) 42
Well, this is a fantastic poll for Democratic nominee Larry Joe Doherty, and it's not the first. These numbers match a Doherty internal which pegged the race at 43-38 for McCaul.
This is an R+13 district, though it's trending Democratic; Kerry outperformed Gore by 4.5 points here, even as he underperformed Gore nationally. In addition, the district has a Democratic tradition, as does much of that part of Texas: Democrat Lloyd Doggett represented the Tenth before redistricting, succeeding longtime Democratic Rep. J.J. Pickle; indeed, the former Representatives of the Tenth include President Lyndon B. Johnson.
McCaul has never enjoyed great popularity in his own right. He faced an underfunded Democrat, Ted Ankrum, in the 2006 elections (the only Democratic challenger he has ever had), and won with just 55% of the vote. Now it seems as though Doherty is poised to give him the scare of his political career, and perhaps even come away victorious.
Doherty, 62, is quite a character. He is an attorney and former star of the television show "Texas Justice", which ran from 2001 to 2005. While some initially viewed his as a vanity campaign, he quickly proved he was most serious about his race, defeating a very capable and intelligent Democratic opponent (Dan Grant) in the primary, raising nearly $1 million for the cycle and nearly matching McCaul, and gaining on the Republican incumbent all cycle in polling numbers.
Doherty has been endorsed by the Austin American-Statesman and the Austin Chronicle. The American-Statesman's endorsement is worth reading:
Doherty is a rather eccentric personality with an unusual way of speaking, but he's smart and he's firm on the issues. He wants us out of Iraq, he didn't like parts of the Wall Street bailout but supports federal investment in struggling banks, and he's for a single-payer health plan. His agenda would be good for Austin.
Doherty has the money and support to give McCaul a challenge in a district DeLay and the Legislature drew for a Republican. McCaul has refused to debate Doherty, which lends credence to those who believe the district is a toss-up this year. McCaul hasn't given voters a reason to support him for another term and Doherty offers a viable alternative.
Doherty has a real shot at winning, and given the favorability of the political climate, this may be the best chance at taking down McCaul that we'll have for years.
On the web:
Larry Joe Doherty for Congress
Update by kos: McCain wins the district 48-41. Bush won the district 62-38 in 2004. That augurs well for Noriega, and maybe even Obama.
Surprise, surprise - Howard Fineman joins fellow Newsweeker John Meacham, Wall Street Journal[...]
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Coming Up on Sunday Kos...
In 1982, Chicago's Dailey administration was indifferent to reports that "police killer Andrew Wilson's face looked normal going into an interrogation room, but resembled ground beef hours later." A few years later, the Chicago Police Department was indifferent when a police watchdog "raised serious questions about the electro-shocking of suspects."
In 1990, another watchdog "catalogued 50 cases of alleged police torture." The police department suppressed the report and retaliated against the watchdog. The report created a brief sensation when it became public in 1992 and a few strong voices in the alternative media and civil rights community tried to sustain an interest in reform, but public and media indifference soon prevailed.
Janet Reno was indifferent. So was the Reagan administration. In an atmosphere of indifference, Jon Burge and the detectives under his command found unchecked power to torture suspects, primarily black, on the south side of Chicago. [more ...]
Though the county's head of the criminal courts, Judge Paul Biebel, did a courageous thing in 2002 by appointing a special prosecutor to investigate Burge and his band of brothers, the result was a four-year, $7 million exercise in maintaining the status quo.
How ironic that former Gov. George Ryan, who sits in federal prison today, brought international attention to the tortured confessions of men on Death Row when so few others in powerful places had the will to act.
What accounts for our collective failure?
"My instinct is that racism, pro-police bias and bias in terms of poor black suspects, made it something that the press and prosecutors didn't want to deal with," [civil rights attorney Flint] Taylor said.
George Ryan did the right thing when he commuted Illinois death sentences in 2003, in part because he lost faith in confessions that the police swore were voluntary. Patrick Fitzgerald did the right thing this week when he indicted Burge. Others have done the right thing over the years by opposing and publicizing the abuse of criminal suspects. But Carol Marin is correct that too many for too long have been indifferent to a domestic torture scandal.
Sure Sarah Palin has become of the butt of jokes all over the world but inside the McCain camp the feeling is that the joke's on them. CNN is reporting that the ambitious and overreaching Alaskan has now gone rogue. McCain insiders claim she's "looking out for herself more than the McCain campaign."
"She is a diva. She takes no advice from anyone," said this McCain adviser. "She does not have any relationships of trust with any of us, her family or anyone else.
"Also, she is playing for her own future and sees herself as the next leader of the party. Remember: Divas trust only unto themselves, as they see themselves as the beginning and end of all wisdom."
Earlier this week, Chris Bowers fired up the 2008 Use It or Lose It campaign. For those who are new to the campaign, the idea is simple but powerful: get Democratic Representatives and Senators who are in non-competitive races to pay all of their[...]
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Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 10/20-22. Likely voters. MoE ±5% (no trendlines).
Wilson (R-inc) 47
Miller (D) 35
Like the SC-01 numbers, these are really very impressive for a race that was barely on anyone's radar all year.
In fact, the numbers here may be even more stunning, as the Democratic candidate, Iraq War veteran Rob Miller, has not enjoyed the considerable resources that the independently wealthy Linda Ketner has. Miller has been a pretty good fundraiser for an outsider candidate, and is by all accounts a highly impressive candidate in person, but very few people in the country gave SC-02 a chance at being competitive here.
The numbers here break down a lot like SC-01, and that's good news for Miller. The Democrat gets 27% of the white vote, slightly better than Obama's 24%.
35% of blacks are currently undecided in a district where 27% of registered voters (24% of the sample) are black. If those undecided black voters do end up siding with Miller, it could be worth another 5-8 points for him, putting Miller solidly in striking distance of the incumbent, Joe Wilson.
It would be awfully sweet for a Democrat to win this R+9 district, the first in South Carolina to elect a Republican (after Democrat Albert Watson switched parties in 1965). Moreover, it would be quite lovely to overthrow Wilson, who had this to say in 2001 about his Democratic colleague Rep. Bob Filner:
In September 2002, in a joint appearance on C-SPAN, Filner and Joe Wilson of South Carolina engaged in a heated argument after Filner stated that the U.S. had supplied biological and chemical weapons to Saddam Hussein in the past. Wilson angrily accused Filner of being "viscerally anti-American." Filner, citing his experience as a Freedom Rider, later said, "I've been beaten up and thrown in jail by better people than Joe Wilson."
Wilson later issued a standard Bachmann/Hayes apology, stating that he didn't mean to insult Filner or question his patriotism, which frankly makes no sense.
Here's a quick look at the R+9 district:
Sporting a 12-point lead, Wilson's close enough to 50% that it's difficult to see him losing. However, assuming a normal Democratic level of AA support (and presumably maximum AA turnout this year with Obama atop the ticket), Miller is close enough to make things awfully interesting on election day. We currently rank this race "Likely Republican", and we'll be watching it closely.
On the web:
Rob Miller for Congress
Reports are surfacing that banks haven't noticeably increased lending because of the bailout money and they bloody well don't intend to, thanks. Gee, what a surprise, the bailout didn't fix what it was supposed to. No one could have predicted.[...]
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Superb Congressperson Carol Shea-Porter
Texas-10- Early voting, increased Democratic voter registration, a lack of enthusiasm for McCain and for Republicans in general looks like it is turning one of Tom Delay's gerrymandered districts-- a big swatch of eastern and central Texas from Austin to the Houston suburbs-- blue. Larry Joe Doherty is doing an incredible job and Bush rubber stamp Michael McCaul is suddenly waking up to realize he may soon be working for his father-in-law directly. Today's Austin Statesman seems to have detected a bit of the old gloom and doom setting in at McCaul campaign headquarters.
After looking at the early voting turnout-- two to one, Democrat over Repug-- McCaul campaign manager Jack Ladd sent out an e-mail alert to right-wing activists: ?This is very bad news. If you think your friends are volunteering, they are not. I know I?m not going to sit down and die, and I know you will not either. There are only 12 days left, and this is not a lifelong commitment, we are asking you just give part of a day or days and help keep CD10 Republican.?
Between the Rick Noriega, Barack Obama and SEIU ground campaigns-- not to mention Larry Joe's own-- McCaul would probably be better off spending the next 12 days in one of the snake-handling churches that support him begging for some of that sky-god intervention Palin is counting on.
New Hampshire-01- None of the freshmen elected in 2006 has been more forthright in battling the special interests and always keeping the interests of working families front and center than Carol Shea-Porter. Unfortunately, Jeb Bradley, the rubber stamp reactionary the voters in eastern New Hampshire decided to replace in 2006, is trying to get his old job back. And there's nothing he won't stoop to to get back to Washington. Right now he's using a poor distraught Gold Star mother to distort Carol's support for the troops and principled opposition to the war. Carol has received the endorsement of the VFW's PAC, and an A+ rating from the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. What Bradley is trying to do to her is despicable.
Carol is a military spouse and has been one of the best friends our fighting men and women have in Congress but Bradley is callously manipulating this woman-- apparently driven insane and filled with partisan rage and hatred-- as an attack dog against Carol.
Bradley's corporately funded campaign includes the most vicious and deceitful ads being run by anyone from either party in New England. His ads are entirely based on distortion and outright lies-- like this ugliness. Fortunately New Hampshire is not Alabama and most of the voters there seem to see right through Bradley's slimefest. The two most recent polls-- both in October-- show Carol ahead of him by an average of 7 points. The problem is that Bradley was a 100% corporate shill before Carol banished him from Congress and K Street wants him back-- and right-wing front groups and hate organizations like Freedom's Watch are flooding the district with ads. Carol can really use our help-- and she's earned it.
Pennsylvania-03- The only independent who Blue America has endorsed this year, Dr. Steven Porter, is running against an anti-choice fanatic/pathetic Democratic hack from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party, Kathy Dahlkemper and against one of the most useless and personally corrupt GOP shills in Congress, Phil English. Predictably, the two superficial and unqualified major party candidates have conspired to keep Steven out of the debates. When Edinboro University announced recently that they are including him in a debate next Tuesday, the petrified and tongue-tied Dahlkemper immediately backed out. English isn't saying whether or not he will participate.
"Dahlkemper?s refusal," Steve told us, "is evidence of a fatal flaw in the character of a legislator: the lack of courage. When the choice before the electorate is limited to one between clever thieves and shallow puppets, the only results possible are disastrous. We are experiencing those kinds of results now in our land and across our planet. And still, things can get worse. Recessions can collapse into depressions. Terrorist conflagrations can escalate into nuclear war. The greed of international business can result in ecological holocaust. To stave off such calamities, legislative leaders around the world will need the courage to speak the truth and act accordingly. The cowardice of Mrs. Dahlkemper (and a very corrupt political system which supports her) in both driving independent voices off the ballot and refusing to face them in open debate signals her complete unpreparedness for the office which she seeks. It is a warning sign of unmistakable dimensions."
And English, as usual, has problems of his own. One of the misguided labor unions that has backed him preciously, AFSCME, has finally woken up and seen the light, launching a half million dollar campaign against him for his consistent support of Bush's anti-working family economic agenda. The AFSCME campaign may not be enough to defeat English. Steve has virtually no money to mount a campaign and Dahlkemper is such an abysmal candidate that no self-respecting progressive could possibly vote for her. On top of the corporate pals who English has sold his soul to are coming through for him with last minute mega-donations, especially mutual fund firms, mortgage bankers and other authors of the economic collapse he has helped preside over. Needless to say Big Oil and every big corporation that opposes labor unions, especially Wal-Mart, is donating to English.
Tonight's last item: in a move that surprised most people, Oklahoma's fourth largest newspaper, the Muskogee Phoenix endorsed one of the best candidates running for Senate anywhere, Andrew Rice.
There is no doubt that Inhofe maintains a conservative attitude that reflects the position of his constituent base, but the extremist statements he has made throughout his career on many subjects hurts his credibility and the state's image despite whatever positive contributions he has made while in Congress. And extremism, whether to the right or left, does not promote good government policies or government that benefits everyone.
That is why Andrew Rice is a better candidate in the U.S. Senate race.
Rice has a more even-handed and rational approach to the issues and problems we are experiencing. He has gained a experiential world view as a missionary, working with rural development projects in Asia, that would serve him well in the Senate.
And another great Blue America candidate for Senate, Jeff Merkley, had a pretty special endorsement today too:
Crossposted at Down With Tyranny!