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It's the first Digest of the New Year! Happy New Year!

Pres-by-CD: After taking a short holiday break, we're back with more districts! (Alternatively, now that Christmas is over, the Grinch is free to wreck your empty digest jokes.) Now that New York has certified, we're happy to bring you the first two districts from that state, NY-21 and NY-26. New York was one of the states where Obama's performance held up even in largely white areas; indeed, Obama's 52.2 percent haul in the North Country-based NY-21 (to Romney's 46.1) is a few tenths of a percentage point better than his 2008 performance.

Perhaps Obama's strong performance (especially upstate) relative to 2008 results from a shift in voter preferences attributable to Superstorm Sandy, but keep in mind that these results also include federal-only ballots cast by voters outside of their regular precincts. (If you'll recall, voters in New York were allowed to vote outside of their regular precinct, but in doing so, were limited to the statewide races only, i.e., President and US Senator.) The extent to which this meaningfully shifted votes between Congressional districts is unknown (e.g., if displaced Manhattanites ended up casting ballots upstate), but the undervote rate in the upstate Congressional races does seem somewhat higher than would be normally expected (suggesting the presence of at least some federal-only ballots).

Meanwhile, on the western end of the state, NY-26 is a Buffalo/Niagara Falls-based Dem vote sink; Obama's performance there improved slightly as well, to 63.9 percent (up from 63.4). (jeffmd)

10:12 AM PT: SC-01: Gov. Nikki Haley has now set dates for the special election to fill the House seat of Tim Scott, who resigned (effective Wednesday), in anticipation of being sworn into the Senate the same day to replace Jim DeMint. The primary will take place on March 19, with a runoff scheduled for April 2 if no candidate scores more than 50 percent of the vote. The general election will happen on May 7, but in this strongly conservative district, the Republican nomination battle is where the real action will be confined. Speaking of, one potential GOP candidate is already taking himself out of contention: Paul Thurmond, son of Strom, who just won what's described as a "hotly contested" race for state Senate in November.

10:54 AM PT: TN-04: Step right up and take your whacks at Scott DesJarlais! The Republican congressman, who made a habit out of sleeping with patients (and manipulating them into getting abortions) when he worked as a physician, has already gotten his first primary opponent for 2014. State Sen. Jim Tracy, who unsuccessfully sought the GOP nomination in TN-06 in 2010, says he'll run against DesJarlais—and promises his would-be constituents that he'll "never embarrass you with my personal conduct." (As for the district switch, it makes sense: Tracy's home base of Rutherford County was moved into the redrawn 4th during the most recent round of redistricting.) Plenty of other contenders still loom, so this could wind up being a very crowded race. But can even DesJarlais slip through via the proverbial clown car? We'll have to see.

11:22 AM PT: MN-08: Here's something you don't see very day: Incoming Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan has selected former Duluth City Council member Jeff Anderson as his district director—the same Jeff Anderson he beat in the primary last year, on his way to victory over one-term Rep. Chip Cravaack. Nolan is 69 (and famously served in Congress once before—over thirty years ago), while Anderson is just 35, so it's conceivable Nolan is hoping to groom Anderson as a successor. To that end, district director is a good job, since you get to stay in touch with constituents and can more easily avoid attacks that you've "gone Washington."

11:34 AM PT: AR-Gov: Republican businessman Curtis Coleman says he plans to form an exploratory committee for a possible run for governor. Seriously, just kill me, because I hate these kinds of stories. I mean, this is an announcement not about the creation of a bona fide campaign committee, not even about the creation of an exploratory committee (which isn't even really a thing, legally), but about the future creation of an exploratory committee? Sheez.

As I've said many times before, you should only open your yap twice: Once, on the record, when you're considering a run, and once when you officially announce. Don't have "sources close to" you leak the news, don't play footsie with the press, and don't drag it out forever. And it's not just for the sake of anyone's sanity: You kill your momentum if you don't hit the ground running with a short, sharp shock. You want to make a quick splash and get the media interested: first, with your table-setting statement, then later with your formal announcement. Driving reporters nuts with vague tea leaves is a sure way to have your actual campaign kick-off seem like a dud if and when it does ever happen. So don't do this!

As for Coleman, the guy took a mere five percent in the 2010 GOP Senate primary and didn't self-finance worth a damn, so meh.

11:42 AM PT: IA-Sen: Cue the "Odd Couple" theme music: UMN's Smart Politics blog reports that Iowa Sens. Tom Harkin and Chuck Grassley (he's a Democrat! he's a Republican!) are now the fifth-longest serving pair of senators from the same state, at 28 years in office. The longest ever? GOPer Strom Thurmond and Dem Fritz Hollings of South Carolina, who served over 36 years concurrently. Among active members, the next-longest streak belongs to California Democrats Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, with 20 years together.

11:54 AM PT: Polltopia: PPP's going into the field in Pennsylvania and Virginia, and as per usual, Tom Jensen is soliciting ideas for questions and candidates. Tom particularly wants to know which Dem names to test against PA Gov. Tom Corbett, and which GOP names to try against VA Sen. Mark Warner, who are both up for re-election in 2014, but he's taking all suggestions. PPP might also do a national poll this weekend, so head on over to PPP's website and post your question ideas in the comments there.

12:16 PM PT: Actually, Tracy hails from Bedford County, just to the south of Rutherford, but it, too, was moved into the 4th in redistricting, and Tracy performed well in (much more populous) Rutherford during his previous run for Congress.

12:56 PM PT: MA-Sen: I'm not ready to read a whole lot into this: Sure, it could be Scott Brown testing out a line of attack on Ed Markey, but it could also just be Scott Brown acting like a jerk. Speaking of the lone declared Democratic candidate for the (apparently likely) John Kerry special election, Brown sneered:

"I'll tell you what; they're making it awfully tempting. You got Ed Markey: Does he even live here any more?" Brown said with a laugh as he called into the "Jim & Margery Show" on WTKK-FM.

"You've got to check the travel records. I've come back and forth (from Washington to Boston) every weekend, almost, for three years, and I see, you know, most of the delegation, and I have never seen Ed on the airplane—ever," Brown added.

In all seriousness, though, I wonder if Markey might have something of a Dick Lugar problem:
Markey, a Democrat born and raised in Malden, long called his childhood bedroom in his parents' house as his Massachusetts residence, even though his wife is a doctor at the National Institutes of Health in suburban Washington and the couple owns a home in Chevy Chase, Md.

Following the death of Markey's father in 2000, the congressman bought his family house and continues to maintain it as his voting address, an aide said last week.

Hrm. Regardless, Markey's put himself out there, while Brown has just dithered; if he thought he had a good shot, wouldn't he just go for it? (Notably, the conservative Boston Herald is trying to nudge Brown in the direction of the governor's race, which is probably the easier gambit.) Anyhow, time's growing short for Brown to make a decision, since the special will likely take place mid-year and he'd start at a big fundraising deficit against Markey.

1:25 PM PT (David Jarman): Votes: Yesterday’s House vote on the fiscal cliff is one of those rare votes where you don’t get a straight party line vote (like most contentious votes) but one where the House shatters into pieces and then winner is the side that reassembles the most fragments. Of course, this time it was Nancy Pelosi who did that, putting together a strange coalition of most of the Dems (minus a few defections on the caucus’s left and right flanks), plus the bulk of the establishmentarian and/or moderate Republicans (including the vote of John Boehner himself, no “moderate” but certainly “establishment”).

On the Democratic side, there were 172 yes and 16 no votes (with 3 non-votes, from Pete Stark, Lynn Woolsey, and John Lewis). Within those 16, though, there seem to be two camps: Xavier Becerra, Earl Blumenauer, Peter DeFazio, Rosa DeLauro, Jim McDermott, Brad Miller, Jim Moran, and Bobby Scott (most of whom are Progressive Caucus members) voting against it from the left, and John Barrow, Jim Cooper, Jim Matheson, Mike McIntyre, Colin Peterson, Kurt Schrader, Adam Smith, and Pete Visclosky (most of whom are Blue Dogs) voting against it from the right.

It may not be that simple, though: DeFazio has in recent years been one of the likeliest members of the Progressive Caucus to stray from the party line (for example, he voted against both the Progressive budget and even the leadership budget last year); it’s increasingly hard to tell if he’s becoming more conservative or if DeFazio, always irascible, has just gotten more willing to dig his heels in on bills that feel like half-measures. Adam Smith, on the other hand, has generally been a New Democrat establishment-type player, but he might be looking to remake himself a bit with his newly-configured, much more liberal district which now contains a slice of Seattle. And Moran and Visclosky, even though Moran (who represents northern Virginia) is significantly more liberal than Visclosky, are probably coming from the same mindset, whatever that might be; they’re tight, and are some of the last remaining members of that John Murtha/Norm Dicks appropriations clique that didn’t really fit within any of the Dem caucuses.

(Worth noting: Oregon is the only state where the Dems have the majority of House seats but where the majority of members voted “no.” That’s Progressive Earl Blumenauer, Blue Dog Kurt Schrader, and who-knows DeFazio, while fellow Progressive Suzanne Bonamici and establishment-flavored GOPer Greg Walden voted “yes.”)

On the Republican side, there were 85 yes and 151 no votes (with 5 no-votes, from Ann Marie Buerkle, Dan Burton, Sam Graves, Jerry Lewis, and Ron Paul). That’s too many votes to replicate the entire list, but there was a significant geographic dichotomy here, one that seems to support the larger idea that the GOP is increasingly becoming a regional rump party. The New York Times has a helpful interactive map that puts that into stark relief.

Of those 85 yes votes, only 13 were Republicans from the Census-defined “southern” states, and many of those were either ones with ties to leadership (ex-NRCC chairs Tom Cole and Pete Sessions, Appropriations chair Hal Rogers) or ones with atypical, moderate districts in Florida (Mario Diaz-Balart, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Bill Young). Rodney Alexander, Kevin Brady, Howard Coble, Ander Crenshaw, John Sullivan, Mac Thornberry, and Steve Womack, most of whom are also pretty establishment-flavored, round out the list.

And of those 151 no votes, 59 were from non-southern states. That may still seem like a lot, but bear in mind most of the rest of those 59 were from the GOP’s other strongholds, the Mountain West and Great Plains. Maybe more striking is the number of GOP no votes that came from the Northeast: a grand total of two, from recently-defeated Frank Guinta and from New Jersey’s Scott Garrett. (Actually, it adds up to four if you break with the Census Bureau and consider Maryland to be a northeastern state, which would include Andy Harris and the outgoing Roscoe Bartlett.)

One other interesting consideration: the GOP didn’t seem as reliant on departing members, which is a turnaround from other high-profile decisions late in the cycle where they needed members who weren’t worried any more about their voting records to step up (think back to 2008’s TARP vote, for instance).

Fifteen of the GOP “yes” votes were members who, either because of defeat or retirement, won’t be coming back (Charlie Bass, Judy Biggert, Brian Bilbray, Mary Bono Mack, Bob Dold, David Dreier, Jo Ann Emerson, Elton Gallegly, Nan Hayworth, Tim Johnson, Steve LaTourette, Dan Lungren, Todd Platts, John Sullivan, and Bob Turner). 20 end-of-the-liners, however, voted “no” (Sandy Adams, Todd Akin, Steve Austria, Rick Berg, Quico Canseco, Chip Cravaack, Jeff Flake, Frank Guinta, Connie Mack, Sue Myrick, Mike Pence, Ben Quayle, Denny Rehberg, David Rivera, Bobby Schilling, Jean Schmidt, Tim Scott, Cliff Stearns, Joe Walsh, and Allen West), though I suspect some of the more establishment-flavored names on that list would probably have been willing to offer a “yes” if the vote had looked closer than it actually was.

2:12 PM PT: NJ-Gov: Considering her long odds, this sounds like a pretty decent start for state Sen. Barbara Buono: She's already raised $250,000 in her first month of campaigning against GOP Gov. Chris Christie. That suggests she'll soon qualify for public matching funds, which kick in when she gets to $380,000. So far, Buono's still the only notable Democrat in the race, seeing as state Sen. Richard Codey just kicked the can again on announcing his plans. He originally promised a decision by Jan. 1, but now is saying he will make his mind "as fast as humanly possible." With the election coming this November, though, there really isn't much time left.

Meanwhile, the man who ousted Codey as state Senate president two years ago, Stephen Sweeney, is also reportedly talking with potential candidates—including Codey himself, as well as Rep. Bill Pascrell. Sweeney, too, is weighing a bid, but it sounds like he may be more interested in recruiting someone he views as stronger than Buono. (According to the Newark Star-Ledger, Sweeney's worried that a gubernatorial blowout in Christie's favor could have negative consequences downballot.) I wonder if Pascrell would do it, though: Since the election is in an odd-numbered year, he wouldn't have to give up his seat in the House. But he did just have to deal with a bruising primary last year, so maybe, at age 75, he'd rather chill.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (6+ / 0-)

    Get the Daily Kos Elections Digest in your inbox every weekday. Sign up here.

    by David Nir on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 06:00:10 AM PST

  •  I don't think NY-21's (8+ / 0-)

    numbers have much to do with Sandy.  It's hard to get much further away from NYC than the North Country after all, and the number of people who had second homes up there is probably minimal (and skews more Republican than the state as a whole, given you need to be pretty wealthy to have two residences).  

    Really, the North Country has been steadily drifting left for the past decade or two.  I think it's part of the same realignment that has happened in Vermont, but it's happening at a slower rate and at a slight delay.  I ultimately expect most of Upstate (minus the rural counties in Western New York and the Southern Tier) to become Democratic-leaning.  

    •  I agree (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, James Allen

      Also, after having a short break from updating my PVI spreadsheet (there are some numbers from the last few weeks that I need to input still), here are the PVIs:

      NY-21: R+2 to R+0.

      That's a decent shift in our favor. It moved from R+1 in 2008 to D+1 in 2012, and I agree that this is not because of Sandy at all. Way too far for that to be the case.

      NY-23: D+13 to D+12.

      That's actually moving in the wrong direction for us, but I don't think it matters given how strong the district is in actuality. In contrast, it actually moved toward the Democrats from 2008 to 2012 (D+11 to D+13 yearly only numbers).

      23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

      by wwmiv on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:03:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  ah, thanks for putting it into your sig (0+ / 0-)

        so I didn't need to ask for a link!

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:36:33 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Its not really drifting left (0+ / 0-)

      The people who live up there are still voting the same way they have for a while.  I really believe it is the continued growth of SUNY populations where students are voting at college addresses more and more.  

      In the end, it doesn't really matter since votes are votes, but I think we'll continue to see this vote shift for federal races yet still see some pretty Republican down-ballot control upstate.  The college kids tend not to care as much about down-ballot races or even know about the candidates.  I also wonder if this might explain growth in under-votes over time too.

      "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

      by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:04:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Hardly any SUNY campuses... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ArkDem14, bumiputera

        up that far north.

        Obviously the community colleges don't have a residential component.  The enrollment of the others is:

        Canton Tech - 3,320
        Potsdam - 4,338
        Plattsburgh - 6,214

        Keep in mind all these colleges are lower-tier institutions (state/technical colleges), where the vast majority of students are probably drawn from nearby counties, so the alteration of voting patterns is probably minimal.

        •  I'm not sure you're right (4+ / 0-)

          I've never heard of Canton Tech, but Potsdam is a reputable school in at least some disciplines (for example, their Crane School of Music is probably second - albeit a distant second - to Purchase's among the undergraduate music programs in the SUNY system), and a friend of mine from the Bronx went to SUNY-Plattsburgh. She said it was a party school, but so was SUNY at Purchase when I was there, and some serious learning was also happening there.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:33:10 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I applied to SUNY Buffalo... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            Back in the 90s when I graduated from HS, and at that time, only 15% of their student body was drawn from downstate.  I would presume except for very specific programs it would be less at most of the lower-tier state universities.  

            •  Your presumption (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              May or may not be right in the time period you quote (it can't be right over longer time frames).  But the SUNY population has grown WAY faster than the overall population in upstate NY, so the impact of SUNY by definition has had to grow hugely.  

              I mean Erie County (Biffalo) showed -3% population growth from 2000-10, but UB enrollment grew 10%.  Where could these people have come from?

              These graphics are pretty neat; you can see that upstate around plattsburgh/canton has the lowest percentage of population with college degrees in the state, so it's probably likely that the growth in these schools could be coming from downstate (of course it also could be other reasons, none of which seem provable or disprovable)

              http://apb.buffalo.edu/...

              "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

              by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:21:19 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  That's funny (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, bumiputera

            I bet you every Potsdam student thinks their music school is the best.  I think probably over half of upstate NY music teachers are from Potsdam.  They touted the school even in my elementary music classes.

            But more to the political point, I'd guess a huge chunk of every SUNY school is from downstate, though certain schools will have more locals than others.  Also, community colleges throughout upstate NY are increasing doing residential dorms for non-locals.  Heck SUNY Adirondack (renamed from Adirondack Community College) is in the process of not only building dorms but going from a 2-year to a 4-year school.

            SUNY schools are so frigging cheap the schools will continue to grow so long as the infrastructure can handle it, even for out-of-state the tuition to a SUNY Albany/Binghamton/Buffalo/Stony Brook is like $15K.

            "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

            by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:52:43 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  I mean the totality of upstate NY (0+ / 0-)

          Technically there's not much of anything in NY-21 :-)

          But the number and growth of SUNY schools is probably the biggest shifter of the vote.  The local level races still favor the GO.  Bill Owens/NY-21 overlaps with 5 or 6 state assembly distrcicts that I think are all GOP held and 3 or 4 Senate districts, with only 1 being Dem held and that's because it barely overlaps with owens in part of Saratoga County.

          Attitudes towards government haven't changed much in the area.  Everyone over the age of 30 I saw at Christmas was deranged against gun control, hating Obama and believing the fiscal cliff was actually real and mass layoffs were coming to every company on earth.  It's the growth of non-local voters driving a lot of the change, and since there's not a huge amount of permanent in-migration to this area, what else could it be?

          "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

          by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:42:24 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  ...This argument (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, redrelic17

            Is the exact same thing as Republicans saying "the real Virginia". These are members of their communities. The drift left is real and it really does not matter any ounce whatsoever that the growth is being driven by college enrollment increases as you say (something, by the way, that I disagree with completely).

            23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

            by wwmiv on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:59:42 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm not saying (0+ / 0-)

              They aren't members of their communities, I'm just saying that I don't think there is as much of a trend amongst the prior population as I'm saying there is a changing trend in population swings.  

              If anything, I think what's happening is quite akin to Virginia, except much of the migration is within the state, whereas viriginia is acually a growing population.

              "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

              by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:24:03 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  I have a co-worker who lives in Upper Jay... (4+ / 0-)

            And she says Clinton/Essex/Franklin/Saint Lawrence have essentially become "West Vermont" over the last 20 years.  This is most evident in Plattsburgh itself, but it's happened throughout the counties.  Obama won these four counties by over a 20% margin, whereas he lost the remainder of NY-21 slightly (Romney 50.6%, Obama 47.6%).  Still, the shift from 2008 was to the left in virtually every county in the district (Romney only did better than McCain in Warren, and maybe the portion of Saratoga in the district), so something broader was afoot this time.  

            I wouldn't take down-ticket races as indicative of anything for the time being.  We've seen in many cases that realignment tends to go from President, to U.S. House, to U.S. Senate/Governor, then to state legislature.  

            •  I think we'll know more (0+ / 0-)

              In 2016 (in a non-Clinton race, if Clinton runs she'll probably win upstate NY by 40 points).  Obama has had a particular ability and had 2 terrible opponents, so maybe the effect is real and just amplified.  

              I just find it hard to believe that all these old white people suddenly became more Democratic when they continue to vote GOP at every level of govt except federal.  

              I understand that it sometimes trickles down, but when I see Plattsburgh with a 70%+ elected GOP mayor, Clinton County board with 70% GOP configuration, and the area with all GOP assembly and Senate representation, I'm just not sure the drift left is real.  With obama's big wins, I'd expect something good for Dem's down-ballot.

              "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

              by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:39:46 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Wasn't the transition similar in Vermont? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ArkDem14

                I mean, yeah, Bernie Sanders was Mayor of Burlington, and he's a socialist, but considering that Vermont used to be a bastion of moderate Republicans, Vermonters were much more apt to vote for local Republicans than national Republicans when the latter became too conservative (especially socially conservative) for their liking.

                Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                by MichaelNY on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:45:38 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I don't really know (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY

                  But I'd have thought that national Republicans being too conservative would have hit Vermont and upstate NY at relatively the same time (i.e. neither area is all that socially conservative, and certainly there isn't anything akin to a bible belt) but it seems NY is on a bit of a delay.  

                  NY has been voting Dem for President and Senators for much longer than VT (I think Leahy is till the only Dem ever elected in VT).  So I'm not sure why the Dems have suddenly been romping in upstate NY for president but still no trickle-down anywhere else really.

                  I think telephasic's post below explains a lot of it, but i still don't quite get why it happened as quickly and boldly as it did.  While I get sometimes realigments happen in waves (i.e. the GOP takeover of the South in 2002), upstate NY has seen almost no aggregate population change the last 10-15 years so waves seem less explainable.

                  Oh well.

                  "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

                  by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:04:26 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  New York State as a whole (0+ / 0-)

                    has been voting Democratic for Senator and other state-wide offices more often than not for a while, but that's because New York City and close-in suburbs in Westchester are so Democratic. Upstate has been part of the reason Republicans have controlled the Senate, though gerrymandering is lately the main reason.

                    I don't know why Upstate has been slower to change than Vermont, but I'm suggesting that the process may be a similar one.

                    Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                    by MichaelNY on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:16:09 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Ok (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      MichaelNY

                      And I'm suggesting that the improvment from 2004 to 2008 to 2012 seems to break that slow trend at the top of the ticket but not the bottom, and i'm trying to figure out why.

                      "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

                      by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:26:15 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  I think it's been slower to change (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      MichaelNY, telephasic, gabjoh

                      because of geographic politics; the need to stay with the GOP locally to maintain influence since Democrats dominate NYC where most of the state's money and influence is. Cut off upstate New York and I think these areas become a lot more like Vermont pretty quickly.

                      "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

                      by ArkDem14 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:12:08 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  upstate has always been more conservative (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        then the areas in Western Massachusetts and Vermont then it borders. McEwen and Solomon were well to the right of their next door neighbors (Jeffords and Conte).

                        RRH expat (known as AquarianLeft). Also known as freepcrusher on leip atlas forum

                        by demographicarmageddon on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 01:07:32 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Western MA has undergone a world of change (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY

                          since Olver became the first Democrat to represent it ever in 1990.

                          "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

                          by ArkDem14 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:47:41 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

          •  My inlaws are from Mooers (0+ / 0-)

            and while many of the younger generation have left the area, the folks that remain are died-in-the-wool Democrats. Yes. They oppose most gun control. Many see that as city folks trying to impose their values on country dweller. However, they support Obama and gay marriage.

            You paint with a very broad brush.

      •  Okay... (8+ / 0-)

        I took a look at Obama's absolute percentage increase by two-party vote from 2008 to 2012.  This is not PVI, just measuring his 2008 to 2012 numbers.  By PVI, Obama did better in every single county.

        Essex: 2.78%
        Franklin:1.99%
        Clinton: 1.39%
        Jefferson: 1.35%
        Herkimer (pt) 0.65%
        Washington: 0.56%
        Hamilton: 0.47%
        Saratoga (pt) 0.26%
        St Lawrence: 0.22%
        Lewis: 0.02%
        Warren: -0.16%
        Fulton: -0.98%

        I bolded the two counties which have major SUNY schools (Canton and Potsdam are both in St Lawrence).  While both showed leftward shifts, they weren't much different from the rest of their region.  Clinton was less than neighboring Franklin and Essex, and Saint Lawrence was less than nearby Jefferson, Hamilton, or Herkimer, but more than Lewis.  

        Obama had less votes in 2012 than in 2008 in every single county, but Romney also had less votes than McCain in every single county.  In all but three counties, however (Fulton, St. Lawrence, and Warren) Obama's vote totals declined by less.  So maybe it's not so much that voters are realigning to Republicans, as it is Republicans are dying off faster, and no one is replacing them.  

        •  Brilliant work (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, David Nir

          Perhaps your last sentence explains it more than anything.  

          For every 80+ year-old white person who dies in upstate NY, the replacement is probably only 90% white and maybe 70% GOP and so on.  Whether it's from a student at a SUNY school or the dying person's "more enlightened" grandchild is irrelevant I suppose.

          It just seems that the pickup 2004 to 2008 to 2012 has seemed a little too rapid to be explained by this (in upstate NY total), as Kerry barely won it and then Obama has won it quite comfortably twice.  I guess I'm used to slower realignments.

          "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

          by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:57:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Most weekenders don't own two homes (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, ArkDem14, JGibson

      They'll just have a home in an upstate county like Rensselaer and Columbia and a cheap (as possible in NYC) apartment for during the work week.

      Columbia Democrats have turned their county from red leaning to blue leaning almost entirely by registering weekenders at home instead of in the city.

    •  Agreed, it's way up there. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      Age 23. Voting in NJ-03. Lived most of life in NJ-01. Had Rush Holt represent me during my undergrad years and am now represented by Frank Pallone in my grad school.

      by KingofSpades on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 01:35:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  NY-03: Rep. King threatens party switch (10+ / 0-)

    Link: https://twitter.com/...

    Vaughn Sterling CNN
    ‏@vplus

    Rep. Peter King just indicated to @CNN he is not ruling out switching parties over the GOP refusing to help provide Sandy relief

    The only other Republican who's close to a party switch though is LaTourette, who also gave an angry floor speech against the House GOP last night. I doubt either of them would really ever switch, since they'd be stuck in a powerless minority that looks unlikely to come to power anytime soon (unless Democrats looked seriously poised to take the House, which would be at least a year off from now anyways.)

    If either of them held the balance of power.... well, that might be a different story, but I suppose we can at least now chalk up our first two votes for our hypothetical faux-NY bipartisan porkers alliance power grab.

    (-9.38, -7.49), Blood type "O", social anarchist, KY-01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy." — Stanisław Lem

    by Setsuna Mudo on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:52:29 AM PST

  •  Mississippi (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, James Allen

    I seem to recall rumors of a Thad Cochran retirement in 2008 before he went ahead and ran anyway with Trent Lott calling it quits instead. He'll be a month short of his 77th birthday in November 2014. I don't believe he has committed to running as yet. Maybe Jim Hood could make a race of it? Probably not but more chance than Mike Moore actually running I guess.

    "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

    by conspiracy on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:53:05 AM PST

    •  Hood could run, but he's very cautious (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, bumiputera

      He'll want to see how the Republican field shakes out.

    •  Mike Moore (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, Taget

      got tied to a scandal with one of the biggest lawyers in the state bribing judges and prosecutors to get the verdicts he wanted. It's sort of insider knowledge, because it hasn't gotten plastered all over the place (this came out several years ago, after 2008), and Moore probably won't run for anything because he's effectively crippled by these allegations.

      "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

      by ArkDem14 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:17:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Didn't Hood get involved in that (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Taget

        Scruggs, right?  Or is just every lawyer in MS corrupt :-)

        "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

        by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:31:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Scruggs case (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, Taget, bumiputera

          really hit a lot of people in the Democratic party hard. So far as I know, Hood is not one of them.

          "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles. My Political Compass Score: -4.00, -3.69, Proud member of DKE

          by ArkDem14 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:33:33 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Christie is holding a presser at 2pm est (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, itskevin, jj32

    Regarding the Sandy Relief bill not being taken up. I'm sure he's very upset and might have some choice words for the House leadership.

    26, Male, CA-24 (new CA-26), DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:21:22 AM PST

  •  New diary on the Arkansas Dummymander (6+ / 0-)

    and how it helped cost us control of the house:
    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    NC-06/NC-04; -9.12, -8.62; Yellow Dog Democrat

    by sawolf on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:57:44 AM PST

  •  MA-SEN-special (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, tk421, MichaelNY, James Allen, Taget

    MA's soon-to-be-former Sen. Scott Brown speaks:

    “I’ll tell you what; They’re making it awfully tempting. You got Ed Markey: Does he even live here any more?” Brown said with a laugh as he called into the “Jim & Margery Show” on WTKK-FM.

    “You’ve got to check the travel records. I’ve come back and forth (from Washington to Boston) every weekend, almost, for three years, and I see, you know, most of the delegation, and I have never seen Ed on the airplane - ever,” Brown added.

    Markey, a Democrat born and raised in Malden, long called his childhood bedroom in his parents’ house as his Massachusetts residence, even though his wife is a doctor at the National Institutes of Health in suburban Washington and the couple owns a home in Chevy Chase, Md.

    Following the death of Markey’s father in 2000, the congressman bought his family house and continues to maintain it as his voting address, an aide said last week.

    Sensitivity over the subject was evident in a recent poll Markey conducted to assess his chances in a special election, which would be needed were Kerry to resign.

    A pollster asked whether the congressman is seen as spending too much time in Washington, and if, after 36 years in the House, he doesn’t come back to his district enough.

  •  CO-03 partisan average (3+ / 0-)

    using all 2006-2012 statewide races other than Obama, C0-03 was just 2% more Republican than the state, 3% using just 2010-2012.  That's in contrast with Obama doing nearly 6% worse in the 3rd than statewide.  All of that makes Sal Pace's performance look surprisingly poor.

    NC-06/NC-04; -9.12, -8.62; Yellow Dog Democrat

    by sawolf on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 09:54:43 AM PST

  •  Fiscal Cliff vote geography (4+ / 0-)

    http://politics.nytimes.com/...

    NYT has a great map of who voted yes and no by party that's fun to play with.

  •  Wonder why they tabled the Hurricane relief bill (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, DCCyclone

    It would have passed quick and painlessly.

    Age 23. Voting in NJ-03. Lived most of life in NJ-01. Had Rush Holt represent me during my undergrad years and am now represented by Frank Pallone in my grad school.

    by KingofSpades on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 10:57:12 AM PST

  •  Boehner had a "secret strategy" (5+ / 0-)

    to beat his caucus into submission:

    In a phone call Dec. 21, Boehner told Obama that his game plan all along was to pass the bill setting the $1 million threshold, send it to the Senate to drop it down to $500,000 or so, and ship it back to the House for approval.

    Obama, perplexed by the secret strategy, asked Boehner whether he had shared it with Reid or House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), suggesting that they might have helped him. Boehner said he had not.

    http://dyn.politico.com/...

    The man's pretty lucky there's no obvious challenger for the speakership tomorrow. I can't imagine his members will be happy to read they were being played -- that is, if we assume he wasn't playing the president.

    Looks like he's also trying to do damage control among the NY/NJ caucus in a private meeting today. He can't afford to lose support from any of his non-insane members. That might be too much to bear.

  •  The GOP civil war is just too delicious (7+ / 0-)

    I wish all this happened closer to November 2014......I bet we won't be so lucky, they'll be more disciplined then.

    But this has to be truly the worst 24 hours of John Boehner's political career.  Really, could any previous moment have been any worse?  Not even his participation in a failed coup vs. Newt after the '96 election, I don't think.

    44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

    by DCCyclone on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 11:27:59 AM PST

    •  But then there is this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      http://www.buzzfeed.com/...

      Personally, I happen to see as much opportunity as threat going forward. I envisage something akin to the impact of the Bush privatization efforts in early 2005 as a distinct possibility.

      "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

      by conspiracy on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:33:03 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not much to worry about there (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike, DCCyclone

        If there were a liberal leader putting forth a comprehensive plan we'd probably have heard about it.  Instead they all just stumble around, waiting for someone outside Congress to create something or wait to respond to a GOP plan.  Alas, a topic for another forum.

        It would be interesting to see a Democratic party war; not because I think it helps solve anything but it would be itneresting to get a final handle on where everyone (liberals, moderates and Obama) all stand exactly.  

        I can honestly say that day-in, day-out I really don't think I have most of Congress figured out, even on the Dem side.

        "What if you're on a game show one day and the name of some random New Jersey state senator is the only thing between you and several thousand dollars? And you'll think to yourself, "if only I had clapped faster." - sapelcovits

        by rdw72777 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:41:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Curtis Coleman's claim to fame is (5+ / 0-)

    announcing that we all had to get vaccines and a visa to visit the Delta (read: any black area)

    If he wins the nomination, we have a good shot.

  •  Good news, Hillary Clinton has left the hospital (5+ / 0-)
  •  NY-03: Boehner caved on Senate's Sandy aid bill (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, MichaelNY

    It wasn't going to come up for a vote for at least a week, but now the vote will be held on friday. Boehner also held a little private meeting with King and Grimm to stroke their egos. King and Grimm are sounding mollified; Grimm says he will vote for Boehner now, King was more vague but sounding like a yes.

    (-9.38, -7.49), Blood type "O", social anarchist, KY-01, "When smashing monuments, save the pedestals. They always come in handy." — Stanisław Lem

    by Setsuna Mudo on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 12:55:45 PM PST

  •  NH-St House: Ex-Speaker O'Brien gets no committee (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, HoosierD42

    http://www.concordmonitor.com/...
    Apparently, he did not request any committee assignments and they gave him none.  He's also sitting in the back row now.

    Age 23. Voting in NJ-03. Lived most of life in NJ-01. Had Rush Holt represent me during my undergrad years and am now represented by Frank Pallone in my grad school.

    by KingofSpades on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 01:36:29 PM PST

  •  What will happen at the Speaker vote tomorrow? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, itskevin, LordMike, R30A

    There has been no formal challenge to Boehner.  But the far right Republicans (which is 70% of his caucus) are pissed at him for the fiscal cliff deal, and then a significant chunk of the remaining 30% in New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey - which would seem to be his "base" are equally pissed at him over the Sandy snub.

    On the one hand, Boehner is an asshole, of course.  But you have to admit he has a tough job.  Who in their right mind would WANT to lead this House?

    •  Not much (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, LordMike

      My guess: enough upset Republicans abstain to keep Boehner from winning on the first ballot, then he wins on the second ballot after they've made their statement.

      Of course, if Boehner actually lost, it wouldn't all be downside for Democrats: an embittered John Boehner might be able to deliver his remaining loyalists for less horrible deals down the line, and those kinds of grudges help sew chaos in a party.

  •  Boehner yelled at LoBiondo (7+ / 0-)

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    "I was chasing the Speaker all over the House floor last night, trying to talk to him and his staff," King said on CNN on Wednesday morning. "He kept telling me, wait until the vote is over, wait until the fiscal cliff vote is over, everything will be taken care of. And then he was gone. He refused to meet with us. He actually yelled at Congressman LoBiondo, saying, 'I'm not meeting with you people.'"

    LoBiondo spokesman Jason Galanes confirmed that King's account was "accurate."

    He doesn't hold up well under pressure.

    26, Male, CA-24 (new CA-26), DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 03:42:33 PM PST

    •  They all seemed to kiss and make up now... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, LordMike, Taget

      Boehner was just using the vote to secure Speaker election support is seems.  

      President Obama would have been a Republican in the 1980's.

      by Jacoby Jonze on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 03:54:13 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I have very serious doubts (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        that was ever in jeopardy.

        Even the most rabid conservatives understood that in order to beat Boehner, they would need a candidate who would get the support of all but a handful of members of the caucus. The only time you fire the Speaker-designate at the 11th hour is if you think he doesn't have the votes on day 1.

        Incidentally, the Democratic caucus should have done more to punish those individuals who did not vote for Nancy Pelosi two years ago. I would have stripped them of all committee assignments in a heartbeat.  

        Ok, so I read the polls.

        by andgarden on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 05:37:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  OMG (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, KingofSpades, DCal, itskevin, Taget, R30A

    I can feel the primary challenges just starting to appear.

    http://www.politico.com/...

    Please oh please oh please bring on the catfud against Ros-Lehtinen! That's only R+2 with a huge trend toward us.

    23 Burkean Post Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Raised), TX-20 (B.A. & M.A. in Political Science), TX-17 (Home); 08/12 PVIs

    by wwmiv on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 05:07:21 PM PST

  •  MO-8: Steelman in (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, jj32, bumiputera, James Allen

    http://semotimes.com/...

    Former State Treasurer Sarah Steelman officially threw her hat into the ring seeking the 8th District Republican Committee’s nomination today.

    26, Male, CA-24 (new CA-26), DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 05:09:31 PM PST

    •  I believe that if she wins... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, bumiputera

      she would be the only member of the House of Representatives in the 113th Congress to have unsuccessfully run for both Governor (2008) and Senate (2012).

      18, FL-07 (school), MD-07 (home). UCF sophomore, politically ambitious, vocally liberal--what else could you need to know?

      by tqycolumbia on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 08:43:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  NJ-Gov: I think Sweeney is trying (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    to find another candidate, because he doesn't like her.

    20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

    by ndrwmls10 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 05:40:34 PM PST

  •  CD23 (3+ / 0-)

    pres by cd

    http://www.co.ontario.ny.us/...

    page 8 has township totals

    naples is split,

    001  is 23rd CD
    002 is 27th CD

    otherwise page 8 has the township results

    adding this to Pres by cd

    Obama   133940    48.37%
    romney   137306   49.59%
    total        276877

    This was a district I counted as safe Republican the entire year of 2012 until the day after November 6.

  •  MI: Emergency Manager Law 2.0 Repeal Push (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, itskevin

    Looks like the same group that was instrumental in getting Public Act 4 overturned in November will be the lead behind repealing the reiteration of this law, Public Act 436.  The difference, this time, is that it will be a citizens/statutory initiative instead of a referendum:

    LANSING, MI -- Gov. Rick Snyder says Michigan's new emergency manager law improves upon the version that voters rejected in November, but critics say there are too many similarities and are gearing up for another fight.

    "We're going to be ready to go," said Greg Bowens, a spokesman for the Stand Up For Democracy coalition, which led the successful effort to repeal Public Act 4 via voter referendum. "This will be a nice issue on the 2014 ballot when the governor is up for re-election."

    Public Act 436, which Snyder signed into law last week and takes effect in the spring, allows the state to intervene in financially struggling cities and municipalities. It includes an appropriation making it immune to referendum, but Bowens said that citizens could still challenge the law by way of a statutory initiative.

    Stupid, stupid Snyder.  I'm ecstatic that this announcement was made so soon, as I thought they were going to let the anger ebb a bit more to our detriment.
  •  2moro brand new congress get sworn in (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, KingofSpades, LordMike, MichaelNY

    Im really excited for the senate side. I don't know about yall but ever since I've been followin politics since the '08 elections, this is one of my fav times of the yr. Which goes to show you that ppl who enjoy that are def political junkies.

    To bad Im going to be working around that time 2moro. But I like to see some of my current fav senators, and the new ones coming in like Nelson, Menendez, Klobuchar, Baldwin, Heinrich, Murphy.

    I particularly want to see the look on face of those R Senators when their D counterpart are getting sworn in. Especially that dickface from Wisconsin. And folks like Blunt who has a even creepier smile IMO than Filner, Toomey and others.

    I have to watch on C-SPAN video archives when they post it in a cpl of days.

    Moderate Progressive, Born in Cairo, Raised in NY-11, Living in NJ-13.

    by BKGyptian89 on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 07:37:22 PM PST

  •  Peter Kinder running in MO-08 (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, Audrid, bumiputera, James Allen

    http://politicmo.com/...
    Might free up the LG seat.

    Age 23. Voting in NJ-03. Lived most of life in NJ-01. Had Rush Holt represent me during my undergrad years and am now represented by Frank Pallone in my grad school.

    by KingofSpades on Wed Jan 02, 2013 at 11:24:15 PM PST

  •  Lt. Gov. Bolling is actually weighing... (7+ / 0-)

    An independent bid for governor in Virginia. .

    The disclosure that Bolling has been courting business leaders and polling, made in an interview with The Washington Post, is the first indication that the lieutenant governor has taken some concrete steps toward an independent run.

    “We’re very seriously evaluating the feasibility of an independent campaign,” Bolling said. “I have been meeting with a number of business leaders across the state to discuss that possibility. We’ve done some polling to assess where we might stand in a three-way race. There’s a lot of due diligence to be done to asses the feasibility of an independent campaign for governor, and we continue in the process of doing that due diligence.”

    This is fucking awesome.

    Keeper of the DKE glossary. Priceless: worth a lot; not for sale.

    by SaoMagnifico on Thu Jan 03, 2013 at 01:43:36 AM PST

  •  Speaker's election right now (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    5 people voting present, not sure from which party, 70 or so members in so far.

    I think someone voted for Colin Powell as speaker.

    •  ok, some details (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      link

      John Stanton of Buzzfeed keeping track of votes in his twitter thread above.

      It was Jim Cooper who voted for Powell. Sigh. Michele Bachmann didnt vote for anyone for speaker, and some new rep voted for Eric Cantor.

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