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Comment Preferences

  •  Just as in the first term (11+ / 0-)

    I pray for President Obama's safety and well being.  May he at all times, be well protected.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:11:12 AM PST

  •  The perfect time for a holiday. (4+ / 0-)

    January really needed a holiday. After the feast of December, the famine of January was obvious. Especially for us who live in the colder climes. January is often a brutal month. I have to work, but having the kid off school still makes the day a little less trying, since he's old enough to be home alone.

    I only wish more people could/would take the day off.

    We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.

    by PowWowPollock on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:16:25 AM PST

    •  I wish I could (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone, MichaelNY

        take the day off, but I am thankful that I don't have to be at work until noon today so I got to watch the inauguration. Four years ago I had to watch the rerun at night. It is much more interesting to see it while it is happening...

      Diehard Swingnut, disgruntled Democrat, age 54, new CA-30

      by Zack from the SFV on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:02:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The New Mexico mass shooting... (9+ / 0-)

    killed the family of former state senator Eric Griego's (D) brother.  He ran for Congress in 2012, losing the open seat primary race to now-Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) in NM-01 by only 5 points.  You may remember Eric Griego, as he was a Kossack as well, and he had quite a few Kossacks supporting him, as he was running as the most progressive candidate in the primary.

    Investigators said the dead included a man, a woman and three grade-school-age children -- two girls and a boy.

    They did not release the names of the victims, saying the process of formally identifying the remains was still going on, but they said the home belongs to Greg and Sarah Griego. Greg Griego was the chaplain for the Albuquerque Fire Department and involved in several prison ministries.

    ....

    Griego's brother, former state Sen. Eric Griego, issued a statement saying, "Our family is grieving this terrible tragedy. We appreciate the prayers and support we have received and request that the media honor our family's privacy during this difficult time."

    Sadly, it looks like it was one of their own children that murdered his family.
    Police have released the names and ages of the victims in the South Valley shooting.

    They are:

    Greg Griego, 51
    Sarah Griego, 40
    Zephania Griego, 9
    Jael Griego, 5
    Angelina Griego, 2

    It was a “horrific” crime scene that confronted deputies Saturday night: Former Calvary church Pastor Greg Griego; his wife, Sarah; and their three youngest children dead — fatally shot multiple times with a “military-style” assault rifle and other weapons — at their South Valley home.

    The suspect in custody is the couple’s 15-year-old son, Nehemiah Griego, who neighbors said often wore “nothing but camouflage” and wanted to be in the army.

  •  NJ 5: Blast from the past (9+ / 0-)

    Andy Maguire, elected in the year of Watergate and defeated in the year of Reagan, is thinking of taking on Scott Garrett.

    http://www.northjersey.com/...

    •  Could Maguire be 2014's Rick Nolan? (5+ / 0-)
      •  I don't think Garrett is in a swingy district (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        R30A, MichaelNY
        •  It's only about R+4 and Garret won by about 12 (7+ / 0-)

          over a nobody this year.  He's way too conservative for a light red district and if we got a great candidate it might start out at Lean R. That being said it does remain to be seen whether we can still win districts like this without presidential voters punching straight tickets since Steve King easily held on in a nominally similar district.

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

          by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:42:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hopefully the voters who are new to King (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            betelgeux, MichaelNY

            realize the mistake they made.

            Registered in NY-02, College CT-01, Spent most of the rest of my life on the border of NY-08 and NY-15

            by R30A on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:14:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I'll believe it when I see it (0+ / 0-)

            Steve King is a precise counterpoint to your claim that he's "way too conservative" for the district. The voters in western Iowa obviously didn't think King was too conservative for them.

            Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

            by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:07:37 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No, King's 2012 performance is irrelevant (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              to the point I was trying to make.  The open question is whether we're starting to see presidential elections have a much more significant straight ticket effect than in the past (seems logical) and if that spills over to midterms (remains to be seen).

              If that's not true, then people like King and Garrett are more vulnerable in midterms since they have largely white districts and won't have Romney's coattails to save them.

              In truth I really think voters are starting to realize that it makes no sense to split your ticket federally except for very obvious cases of ideological deviation (Romney/Matheson) and that has influenced voting patterns.  We've already seen it happen for senate incumbents with not a single scandal-free incumbent losing while their party's presidential nominee simultaneously won a majority of the vote in their state.  This basically occurred last year with only Canseco losing in a Romney district that wasn't drastically changed in redistricting.

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

              by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:25:46 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Canseco (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, sawolf

                Wasn't scandal free. And the district actually was changed pretty radically between the court map and the 2006-2010 map in both El Paso and Bexar (San Antonio) and with the addition of many Republican rural counties in between.

                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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:15:24 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  What scandal did he have to deal with? (0+ / 0-)

                  And when I say scandal I mean something like being indicted for corruption, not just having minor ethics issues.  Had Ted Stevens not been arrested a week before the 2008 election I highly doubt he would have lost.

                  I also see that 30% of the district was new; I didn't think it was that high.  The other two districts where an incumbent lost while their party's nominee won were IA-03 and FL-18, both significantly changed by redistricting so those seem fairly obvious to exclude.

                  Do you know if Romney won the old iteration of the 23rd?

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

                  by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:29:49 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Old version (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY, sawolf

                    There's no way that Romney would have won the old version. Obama improved in much of the San Antonio portions that were removed and placed into the 20th. If it were the old district, I imagine that Obama would have done better in that district than he had in 2008.

                    And yes, Canseco's mailer really did turn into a minor scandal in the district.

                    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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:35:33 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  IA3 (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    sawolf, MichaelNY

                    IA3 was also different in that the incumbent lost to another incumbent.

                    SSP poster. 43, new CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

                    by sacman701 on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 08:01:12 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

        •  It's not, but it's winnable. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          R30A, betelgeux, MichaelNY

          But we need someone who can run up the score in upper and middle Bergen County (the latter especially).

          I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

          by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:06:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  I'd love to see if he could do it. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      betelgeux, MichaelNY

      He lives in Ridgewood in upperish Bergen County.  The BCDP has also been more competent lately, so he could do it.

      I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

      by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:13:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  He'd certainly be a good get (3+ / 0-)

      He's even older than Nolan though.

      24, Practical Progressive Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

      by HoosierD42 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:57:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Lamar Alexander will give a brief speech (7+ / 0-)

    And he's in the presidential party that just left the White House, he walked out next to Biden. I wonder if he'll be one of the Republicans that will be willing to work with the President during the next term?

    26, Male, CA-26, DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:46:15 AM PST

  •  Biden invited the governor of NH to his (6+ / 0-)

    swearing-in yesterday. Hmmm.

    •  And the only inaugural ball he had (6+ / 0-)

      was in Iowa.  It definitely sounds like he's planning a run but I wonder if he would wait for Hillary to make a decision first.

      •  Biden v. Clinton (4+ / 0-)

        I have to imagine that they have had private discussions about 2016 behind closed doors. I highly doubt they both run

        •  I think it's strategic... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          betelgeux, MichaelNY

          Hillary is saying no right now, so it leaves open the door for somebody with 2016 ambition to step up - Biden toying with running is meant to keep the Dems in line and not breaking from the President to make their 2016 candidacy bones.  

          "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

          by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:37:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Actually that would very much surprise me (7+ / 0-)

          I doubt they've talked at all.  They are not personal friends or allies, they are on the same side only in broad terms in party and ideology.  Given that they both have wanted to be President and in fact ran against each other, nothing would precipitate a conversation to work out anything between them.

          Given their natural rivalry, it would be shocking if they worked out any kind of deal behind closed doors, especially so long in advance.

          And what incentive does either have to yield to the other?  The only incentive for each is the humility of again losing, for Biden a third time and in spectacular fashion as the sitting VP, and for Hillary a second time in equally spectacular fashion as having been both times regarded at the outset as the clear frontrunner.  But that doesn't incentivize any deal behind closed doors for one to yield to the other.  Biden might yield in the end if Hillary runs simply because electoral reality looks bad for him, but it wouldn't require any discussions with Hillary's camp.

          On top of all this, I don't think Hillary wants to run again, which further argues against their having been any discussion with Biden.  Maybe she still would love to be President, but running for President left a bad taste in her mouth.

          I don't think anyone has talked.

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

          by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:00:21 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  If she doesn't run (5+ / 0-)

            I imagine the reason will mostly be due to tiredness and wanting her own life. But it could just as easily all be calculation. And I don't mean that negatively. We all know how persuasive Bill can be for one. She might also get bored being outside the fish bowl. Time will tell.

            "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:09:03 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I've read Biden actually is quite close... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, DCCyclone, bumiputera

            ... to the Clintons. Much closer with them than the Obamas are, and she and Biden meet quite regularly.

            That said, I too doubt there have been any discussions about who runs. Biden obviously wants to run, but he's gearing up regardless of what Hillary does. He may opt out if she runs, but that's a big if at this point, and I doubt he's deferring to her at the outset.

  •  Brrrrrrrrr! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DCCyclone, betelgeux

    It's 10 degrees now and we've pretty much reached the high for today.

  •  I'm listening to the inauguration speech right now (4+ / 0-)

    I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

    by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:07:01 AM PST

  •  Democrat Asm. Steven Brooks of NV in jail after (10+ / 0-)

    he threatened the life of Speaker-elect Marilyn Kirkpatrick with a loaded gun.  All because he was upset that she had denied him a Chairmanship on the Ways and Means Committee and his attempt to do a coup to get a new speaker failed.
    http://www.lasvegassun.com/...
    If they have common sense, the Assembly should vote to expel him for this.

    I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

    by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:11:14 AM PST

  •  House to raise debt limit Wed. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    itskevin, MichaelNY, James Allen, askew

    I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

    by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:32:02 AM PST

    •  Will it pass? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY
      •  I imagine so (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        Though there might be some argument over compelling "...the House and Senate to approve budgets that call for spending cuts, with pay withheld for lawmakers in either house that failed to do so."

        "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:21:29 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Reporting now says Senate will pass budget... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, itskevin, MichaelNY, askew

          ...with Democratic priorities under reconciliation.

          Wish I had a link handy but I don't, but I saw it this morning.

          So they'll play ball on this and take the 3 months.

          But ultimately, Obama and Reid are going to play hardball, there will be no spending cuts without closing tax loopholes for a scored revenue hike.  Boehner will end up allowing the vote with, once again, a few dozen Republicans voting with almost all Democrats to pass it, perhaps after a short government shutdown but I imagine Boehner would prefer to avoid that knowing that would only further erode his caucus' and his party's image.

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

          by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:17:36 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  How long can Boehner get away with that? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingofSpades, itskevin, jncca, MichaelNY

            He would be acting for the good of the country but I cannot see how he survives long term with his caucus. They basically become a majority in name only on anything that matters. Can you imagine the reaction round these parts if a Democratic speaker was passing legislation with Republican votes?

            "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:36:15 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well the Bollweevils had their fun (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KingofSpades, MichaelNY

              much to Tip O'Neill's dismay, during the 1981-1983 session. The Democrats while having control of the house, lacked true ideological control.

              Thus much of Reagan's tax polies and deregulation bill were passed much in part from the Bollweevils siding with the Republicans.

              Tip O'Neill basically said that Reagan and the Republicans owned the economy at that point and would be to blame if a recession occured (which it did in in '82)

              "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

              by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:50:44 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  the main difference here (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                jncca, MichaelNY

                was that Tip O'Neill was not voting with conservative Democrats and Republicans, unlike what Boehner is doing.

                "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

                by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:52:07 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

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

              He can get away with it on bills that a majority of the caucus wants to pass but doesn't want to vote for. The cliff and Sandy bills were both like that. Any budget that could pass the Senate would not, so it would make more sense for the GOP to pass its own budget and negotiate with the Senate assuming that they would prefer some sort of compromise budget to no budget at all. If the Senate passes the budget and the House does nothing, that might look worse politically than compromising with the Senate.

              Then again, "sense" and "House GOP" typically don't go into the same sentence.

              SSP poster. 43, new CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

              by sacman701 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:18:30 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm just not sure many on the right will care (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY

                Many House Republicans may well want bills to pass without their votes but the end result is the most important thing to base voters. I think if roles were reversed people could easily argue it a distinction without a difference.

                "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:24:57 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  I wouldn't be surprised (0+ / 0-)

            if he gets precisely 17 Republican votes on that kind of budget. Probably no more than 20.

            Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

            by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:11:36 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  The three month gambit? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      They just want to take it off the table for the SOTU it seems.  I don't know if Dems have anything they can do to not pass it and have to face the issue again though.  

      "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

      by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:40:52 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Could be. I try to take the more optimistic (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, askew, bumiputera

        view that it shows they are never really going to have a showdown over the debt ceiling again. Just too risky for the GOP.

        I think there is going to be some drama over the sequester and CR though.

        •  Quote (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          R30A, MichaelNY

          "The legislation does not set a specific limit; rather it would automatically increase the limit by the amount required to fund U.S. government obligations through May 18."

          But they make the point that once again the government can stretch it out beyond that point if necessary.

          "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:19:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  It's not an American election (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    betelgeux, MichaelNY

    but I'm really starting to get worried about the German federal election this summer.  For a long while it looked like the junior coalition partner, the Free Democrats would fall below the threshold and that the Social Democrats and Greens would be strongly favored to form a coalition, but now it's looking like the Free Democrats will stay in parliament and the Left and the Pirate party might siphon off enough support to allow Merkel to hang on.

    It's such a shame that those Merkel's government has hurt the most in the European periphery won't have any chance to vote her out.  She's also lucky that the bar for Worst German Leader in History is set to high...

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

    by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:03:56 AM PST

    •  It still never looked likely that Merkel would go (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, bumiputera

      She's still very popular in Germany, however destructive her policies regarding the Eurozone have been in the periphery. Polls have almost never had a SPD-Green coalition with enough support for a government, so most of the speculation has been on another Grand Coalition between the CDU/CSU and the SPD  (led by Merkel) or maybe a CDU/CSU-Green coalition.

  •  I found this old photo of LBJ and Humphrey (11+ / 0-)

    the other day
     photo johnson_zpsd0a389e9.jpg

    pretty cool

    "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

    by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:32:00 AM PST

    •  Are they meant to look like Laurel and Hardy? (8+ / 0-)

      "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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:35:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  sorta reminds of (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        betelgeux, MichaelNY

        two old guys heading out to have a good time fishing for the day.

        "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

        by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:52:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  One of our most underrated presidents (7+ / 0-)

      along with Ulysses Grant and Harry Truman right after his term.

      Were it not for the Vietnam War, LBJ would be among our greatest. His domestic policy with the Great Society and Civil Rights/Voting Rights Act was extraordinary.

      It's so depressing to think how much better our country would have been had Robert Kennedy not been assassinated and been elected over Nixon. Universal Health care would have been in place for over 40 years.

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

      by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:04:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Indeed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, bumiputera

        I really want to read all the Robert Caro books on him

        I also always wondered what a Humphrey presidency would be like. If he had only won a few more  states like CA, IL (which Nixon won them by 3) and MO (which he lost by 1). It amazes me that Texas still voted for Humphrey that year over Nixon and Wallace.

        Nixon still did sign some great environmental laws and would hardly be considered conservative to today's modern Republicans.

        "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

        by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:26:41 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Nixon and Obama (0+ / 0-)

          In some ways, the two presidents are similar. They support(ed) strong action by the government to shape the economy; strong and intrusive "national security" laws, including pervasive domestic spying; diplomacy with all sides in conflicts; and universal health insurance. Where they differ is that Obama is far from paranoid and truly not a crook; that the way they got into office was very different; that whereas Nixon really had no "secret plan" to withdraw from Vietnam, Obama executed a plan to get out of Iraq and has a specific plan to withdraw combat troops (and perhaps all US troops) from Afghanistan; and that a lot of Nixon's policies were really the product of a strong proponent of Federal power enforcing initiatives of pretty liberal, Democratic-majority Congress, whereas Obama has had to push hard for liberal priorities against Republican obstructionism in Congress.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:19:45 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  another difference (0+ / 0-)

            Nixon took the surveillance/security state beyond anything that LBJ did, while Obama toned down the system he inherited from Bush II.

            SSP poster. 43, new CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

            by sacman701 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:23:59 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  In what way has he toned it down? (0+ / 0-)

              I don't see it, except in terms of torture of detainees. When GW got pervasive, unaccountable domestic spying imposed, it was considered an egregious and unprecedented step. Now, it's become part of official policy of both parties, such that it is no longer even very controversial except among civil liberties advocates and organizations.

              Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

              by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:34:36 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  Grant (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lordpet8, JDJase, MichaelNY, betelgeux, sawolf

        Grant is among the worst presidents in US history. Decent general, horrible leader of government.

        His administration was wildly corrupt, and he really failed to institute real reform in the South.

        I'd also say that even with Vietnam, LBJ was a fantastic president. He and FDR probably the two greatest as far as legislation goes.

        23, Male, LA-02, TX-08 (originally), SSP: sschmi4

        by Stephen Schmitz on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:40:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  LBJ was an abject disaster as a president (0+ / 0-)

          Pig-headed and insecure, no person is more responsible for turning what should be a land of milk and honey into a divided country where nothing ever gets done.

          And the less said about Humphrey, the better.

          If LBJ is a "fantastic" president then so is Millard Fillmore.

          Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

          by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:19:23 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  ? (5+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JDJase, MichaelNY, lordpet8, betelgeux, Paleo

            Well I think passage of the civil and voting rights acts, the creation of Medicare/Medicaid, the Great Society programs, immigration reform, gun control, etc.

            When you compare legislative work, LBJ is in fact a fantastic president. I care little about his personality, his presidency dramatically changed American history and saw the expansion of federal government.

            23, Male, LA-02, TX-08 (originally), SSP: sschmi4

            by Stephen Schmitz on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:54:07 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Oh please (0+ / 0-)

              In 1964 the majority of the country favored progressive change and principled liberalism over principled conservatism and extreme conservatism.  40% of Republicans even had progressive ideas.

              LBJ destroyed that in two years.  LBJ destroyed the Great Society.  LBJ is more responsible than any person for the shitty/extremist/polarized/failed country, for progressivsm to be labeled "unpatriotic", for the military industrial complex thriving, etc etc etc.

              His accomplishments were great.  His failings were far greater.

              Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

              by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:51:59 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

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

                He was a great domestic president.  The legislation alone he got through in 64 and 65 would have secured his place among the great presidents.  Vietnam didn't destroy all that, but it destroyed his chance for being a great president.  He had personal failings, but so did a lot of presidents.  I don't see how he was responsible for the "unpatriotic" charge, or the polarization.  The most heated opposition to him came from the left, not the right.  

        •  All that killing in Indochina (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DCCyclone, jncca, Christopher Walker

          made his presidency fail. He cannot in my opinion be judged overall as a great president, but as a great president domestically and a horrible president in terms of foreign policy.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:20:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think that's right (4+ / 0-)

            LBJ is impossible to categorize because he was both such a spectacular success at home and such a spectacular failure in foreign policy.

            That combination is unique, I don't think there's anyone else who can claim it.

            tommypaine is wrong in suggesting that just any President could've accomplished what LBJ did in civil rights and the Great Society.  Agency at the top matters, these things were not cultural robotics.

            But Vietnam was a long-term disaster in ways not imagined at the time as the first domino to get pushed over in eroding public trust in government.  At the time, there was no guessing that Vietnam would someday put in motion attitudinal changes that would hurt the left on things having nothing to do with national security or foreign policy.  But it did.

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

            by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:26:02 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  And wow I totally meant Arthur instead of Grant (5+ / 0-)

          For a while there I was wondering why you guys brought him up.

          With Arthur it's all about having passed the Pendleton Civil Service Act of 1883 in a time of obscene corruption and patronage.  I wouldn't say he was a great president by any means, just that he shouldn't be so forgotten.

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

          by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:28:16 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Grant gets a bad rap in many ways (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, bumiputera

          One of these days I will explicate on the point.

          Ok, so I read the polls.

          by andgarden on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:18:36 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Um (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lordpet8

        LBJ is consistently rated in the top 15, and often in the top 10, of our Presidents. So are Grant and Truman. I'm pretty sure they aren't "underrated" in the least.

        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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:51:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Maybe not Grant (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lordpet8, betelgeux, bumiputera

          But Truman and LBJ are.

          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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:59:03 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Grant is kinda similar to Nixon and Johnson (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingofSpades, bumiputera

            but overall Johnson and Nixon were disgraceful Preidents, in comparison to their contemporaries (Eisenhower, Kennedy, Ford) while Grant manages to be the best President between Lincoln and McKinley (not counting Garfield).  That isn't saying much of course.

            Grant was much less hands on in his failings.  He put trust in untrustable people.  In contrast, Johnson knew exactly what he was doing at every point.  He got blood on his hands, then he intentionally wallowed in it.

            Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

            by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:32:31 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  President Garfield is one of the great ... (5+ / 0-)

              "What could have been" times in American history.  He was one of the most interesting, probably smartest, and widely experienced (in a bunch of different stuff) people ever to serve as President.  And there is every indication that if he would have had more than 200 days as president, he would have moved the country in a progressive direction on everything from government reform to civil rights.  He really did have the potential to be on of the country's great presidents, at a time we could have used it!

            •  Huh, Ford? (4+ / 0-)

              What was so freakin great about Ford? And when judging Eisenhower, don't ignore some disastrous failings of his foreign policy (Mossadegh, anyone?).

              Also, Kennedy didn't live long enough to be a great president. He might have been, but it's impossible to prove. What actions he would have taken on Cuba and Vietnam, had he lived - not to mention on civil rights, where he was a lot more hesitant than President Johnson - would have had a lot to do with determining whether he was great, mediocre, or possibly a disaster.

              Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

              by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:23:45 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Don't forget about (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY

                Operation Ajax and Operation PBSUCCESS.  Both succeeded and were done out of greed and irrational fear and brought serious negative consequences down the road.

                I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

                by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:26:26 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Ford was a decent man (0+ / 0-)

                unlike Johnson and Nixon.  And Ford did very well bringing the country back to normalcy.

                He obviously had little time and zilch mandate, but he did a decent job with the hand he was dealt.

                Not a great president by any means, but not a pussbag like Nixon and Johnson.

                Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

                by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:56:33 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I never forgave him for pardoning Nixon (6+ / 0-)

                  That was a bad precedent, compounded later by the pardons for Iran-Contra criminals.

                  I do agree that he was a decent man, and he nominated a good Supreme Court Justice, but there was nothing else I can think of that was really notable about his presidency.

                  I also don't think being a personally good man is that important a quality for being a great president. FDR was an adulterer, and it didn't make a damn bit of difference.

                  Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                  by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:15:48 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Yeah, by tommypaine's standard, Jimmy Carter... (8+ / 0-)

                    ...was our nation's greatest President.  He really was the most honorable human being to serve as President in anyone's living memory and probably going back much further.

                    Ford's pardon of Nixon defined him.  That was his moment to show real leadership, which meant letting justice be done, and letting the country live through it.  Trying to "spare" the country of an "ordeal" was shortsighted.  Ford instead did a very dishonorable thing by signaling that some people can be above the law just because they are powerful, and by doing so Ford further cemented a long-term distrust of civil institutions.

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

                    by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:30:54 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  I've never completed a reassessment of Ford (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    I felt compassion for him as a decent human who suffered through a lot of relentless, mean-spirited ridicule.

                    The pardon issue is complicated, for me.

                    The other factor that always crops up, for me, when I try to think about Ford's presidency is those silly WIN buttons... Whip Inflation Now!

                    A Republican is a person who says we need to rebuild Iraq but not New Orleans. - Temple Stark

                    by Christopher Walker on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 08:43:56 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Although Johnson's Presidency (6+ / 0-)

              was disgraced by the atrocities in Vietnam, he was lightyears ahead of both Nixon and Grant. Grant and Nixon (along with Harding, Buchanan, and Fillmore) were easily the worst Presidents this nation has had. Grant's administration was arguably more corrupt than Nixon's, and he had absolutely no idea about how to properly run a democratic government. He was a milquetoast political leader (although he was a brilliant general) who let his corrupt advisors run the nation and dismantle Radical Reconstruction, which would have actually benefitted the Freedmen of the South. As for Nixon, he trampled on his Constitutional duties with his countless breaches of power and vengeful vendettas against anyone willing to tell the public the truth about his administration's tactics.

              As disasterous and imperialistic as LBJ's foreign policy was, you can't compare him to Nixon and Grant. LBJ was an effective leader who laid the groundwork for much of the modern American social safety net.

              And Chester Arthur was easily the most effective President between Lincoln and McKinley (Civil service reform, fighting against political machines, etc.).

              Student, Proud Progressive, Science Nerd, and Skeptic. Born and raised in CT-03. "Teach a man to reason, and he'll think for a lifetime."--Phil Plait

              by betelgeux on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:35:45 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Pretty much agree with all of this .... (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, betelgeux, bumiputera

                .... but I would put Franklin Pierce as perhaps our country's worst President , with Buchanan a close second.

                •  Would you like to talk a little about Pierce? (0+ / 0-)

                  I really need to learn more about 19th-century presidents other than Lincoln.

                  Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                  by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:02:53 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  He had probably one of the worst (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    post presidencies.

                    Here's the history channel summary
                    http://youtu.be/...

                    "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

                    by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:11:58 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  The ultimate doughface (5+ / 0-)

                    The model of a northern Democrat with Southern leanings.  His nickname was "Young Hickory" -- young Andrew Jackson from New Hampshire.  Appeasing the South at every turn was the only thing he did effectively -- other than that, he was a weak, ineffective leader.  Perhaps his most effective cabinet appointment was in the War Department, where he appointed his very close friend Jefferson Davis.

                    Part of this may have to do with personal things.  Shortly before being sworn in, he and his wife saw their young son crushed to death before their eyes in a train accident.  This sent his wife into a lifelong depression (she was essentially never seen as First Lady) -- and President Pierce turned to the bottle.

                    And, during the Civil War, his actions really came pretty close to treason (maybe I'm going a bit too far there), but he really became an outcast in Concord.  His whole family pretty much dead by the late 1860s, he drank himself to death.  Sad case, and terrible President.

                    •  interesting (0+ / 0-)

                      so Polk and Pierce shared the same nickname

                      "Unfortunately when the Republican party needs to be a big tent party it seems to me we are doing everything we can to become a pup tent party. " — Virginia Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R)

                      by lordpet8 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:04:19 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  Pierce? Well, (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    He was a very dapper dresser.

                    A Republican is a person who says we need to rebuild Iraq but not New Orleans. - Temple Stark

                    by Christopher Walker on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 08:45:48 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

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

                  of the 10 worst Presidents would be:

                  1. James Buchanan
                  2. Millard Fillmore
                  3. Franklin Pierce (Thanks reminding me about him)
                  4. Andrew Johnson
                  5. George W. Bush
                  6. Warren G. Harding
                  7. Ulysses S. Grant
                  8. John Tyler
                  9. Richard M. Nixon
                  10. Ronald Reagan

                  Some (like Tyler, Pierce, and Buchanan) were simply ineffective, others (Harding, Nixon, and Grant) were corrupt, and some (Bush and Reagan) simply did a lot of damage to the nation.

                  On the flipside, my 10 Best Presidents would be:
                  1. Abraham Lincoln
                  2. Franklin D. Roosevelt
                  3. George Washington
                  4. Theodore Roosevelt
                  5. Thomas Jefferson
                  6. Woodrow Wilson
                  7. Harry Truman
                  8. John F. Kennedy
                  9. John Adams
                  10. James K. Polk
                  LBJ and Andrew Jackson would be on that list, but they lose points with me for Vietnam and Indian Removal, respectively.

                  Student, Proud Progressive, Science Nerd, and Skeptic. Born and raised in CT-03. "Teach a man to reason, and he'll think for a lifetime."--Phil Plait

                  by betelgeux on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:30:31 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  What did Millard Fillmore even do? (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    lordpet8

                    He was practically a non-entity.

                    I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

                    by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:31:29 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Not exactly (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      KingofSpades, MichaelNY

                      If he would not have become President, the Compromise of 1850 might not have passed.  It was ironic that President Taylor, a Louisiana slaveholder, became more distrusted by the slaveholding South, and was replaced by Millard Fillmore from Buffalo, NY -- and was hated by the anti-slavery North.

                    •  No, he was horrible (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      lordpet8

                      From Wikipedia:

                      Fillmore opposed the proposal to keep slavery out of the territories annexed during the Mexican–American War in order to appease the South and so supported the Compromise of 1850, which he signed, including the Fugitive Slave Act ("Bloodhound Law") which was part of the compromise.[...]After his presidency, he joined the Know-Nothing movement; throughout the Civil War, he opposed President Abraham Lincoln and during Reconstruction supported President Andrew Johnson.

                      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                      by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:39:35 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Here's some trivia for you (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        Fillmore was just one of three former presidents to later run for office under a third party, the Know Nothings in 1856.

                        The other two were Martin Van Buren as the Free Soil nominee in 1848 and Teddy Roosevelt as the Progressive Party nominee in 1912.

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

                        by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:45:28 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  No mention of Calvin Coolidge? (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY, jncca, bumiputera

                    His policies were far more responsible for the ridiculous inequality of the 1920s and the Great Depression than Hoover.

                    I think Andrew Jackson was a terrible president all around.  He started an incredibly corrupt system of patronage (the spoils system), defied the Supreme Court and committed Ethnic Cleansing (trail of tears) and to top it all of caused a Depression by killing the second Bank of the United States which allowed financial speculators to go crazy and cause a financial crisis.

                    I do largely agree with your top 5 worst, though having Pierce, Fillmore, and Buchanan in there seems rather unfair considering George W. Bush only gets to count once and he served just two years less.

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

                    by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:36:36 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  What do you like about Polk? (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    sawolf, bumiputera

                    Do you credit him with the Mexican-American War, which I consider a tremendous act of imperialist aggression, or do you like him for some of his other achievements?

                    Here's a summary from Wikipedia:

                    Polk was the last strong pre–Civil War president, and he is the earliest of whom there are surviving photographs taken during a term in office. He is noted for his foreign policy successes. He threatened war with Britain over the issue of which nation owned the Oregon Country, then backed away and split the ownership of the region with Britain. When Mexico rejected American annexation of Texas, Polk led the nation to a sweeping victory in the Mexican-American War, which gave the United States most of its present Southwest. He secured passage of the Walker tariff of 1846, which had low rates that pleased his native South, and he established a treasury system that lasted until 1913.

                    Polk oversaw the opening of the U.S. Naval Academy and the Smithsonian Institution, the groundbreaking for the Washington Monument, and the issuance of the first postage stamps in the United States. He promised to serve only one term and did not run for reelection. He died of cholera three months after his term ended.

                    Certainly an important president. I'm unsure whether he should be called great, though.

                    Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                    by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:43:42 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

              •  There's been a lot of Grant revisionism lately... (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                KingofSpades, MichaelNY, bumiputera

                ... though. Many modern historians have argued that the exceedingly poor assessments of Grant's tenure came from the early 20th Century, during the heyday of the Dunning School. Grant's Administration was actually very forceful in pushing Radical Reconstruction, which is what led to his reputation falling in the subsequent decades.

                What does drag Grant down were the corruption of many of his associates (which some historians say are also somewhat overblown), and his non-response to the Panic of 1873 which exacerbated and helped create the Long Depression.

              •  You need to do some reading about Reconstruction (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, bumiputera

                how could he "dismantle" it?  Johnson cared nothing about Reconstruction or blacks for that matter.  Grant supported a relatively radical policy on Reconstruction, and in terms of minority rights it wasn't until Kennedy that someone supassed him.

                Grant and Johnson can both wear the unprinicpled-but-sometimes-progressive hat as well as anyone.

                Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

                by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:01:32 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I meant underrated in that (3+ / 0-)

          I'd easily put both Truman and LBJ in the top 10.

          Overrated presidents?  Jesus H Christ George Washington.  The guy was a total figurehead and yes his "cabinet" tradition makes him look great but John Adams and Alexander Hamilton were running the government more than he was.  In fact I'd almost say George Washington is the most overrated American in history although maybe Thomas Jefferson too.  Really I just hate how we have a culture of deification around the founders leading to shit like constitutional originalism, the tea party movement, etc. etc.  These were real people who had flaws and not all of their ideas and actions were good.  Jefferson in particular demonstrated how horrible his ideas were when executed as president.

          Among my top ones would probably be in no particular order, Lincoln, FDR, Truman, LBJ, Hamilton*, JFK, TR, and maybe Garfield, Wilson, and Grant coming up somewhat after.

          Hamilton really is our most valuable founding father in my opinion.  His plan to federalize the state debt from the Revolutionary War was one of the single most important and constructive acts our country's history as well as his championing of modern economic institutions such as a national bank.

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

          by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:43:15 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Substitute Garfield for Arthur (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY, lordpet8, betelgeux

            momentary brain fart.  Arthur's redeeming quality being the civil service commission, but that's mostly it.  Presidents from that period were incredibly weak compared to the party machines and it's amazing that they were able to get anti-corruption measures passed given how the sole purpose of the parties other than tariff policy was the spoils system.

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

            by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:51:25 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Tipped for contrarianism (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            betelgeux, Christopher Walker

            But seriously, Washington was the second-greatest president because he was offered the kingship and vehemently rejected it. Without Washington's dedication to democracy, who knows what would have happened to the US? He was certainly a grievously flawed person, though, as shown by his slave-holding, and how he treated his slaves.

            With the caveat that I really need to learn more about 19th-century presidents, I think my ranking would look like this:

            Lincoln
            Washington
            FDR
            TR
            And then probably Jefferson.

            I'm not sure who should go next. How good was John Adams? Maybe, eventually, Obama might be on this list.

            Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

            by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:07:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I've always liked Wilson (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY, betelgeux

              Not that he was one of the greatest Presidents, but that he is underrated.  He was one of our most intellectual, worldly Presidents, and he literally killed himself doing the job so he gets an 'A' for effort from me.  He is usually not considered to be a very good President, though, because his plans fell apart near the end of his term.

              Jefferson... I don't know.  He was a great philosopher but he didn't really do anything remarkable as President.  He tried to keep us out of Napoleon's wars in Europe, but alas was unsuccessful and we had the War of 1812.  Or something like that.  His foreign policy was probably the closest thing to a "Ron Paul" foreign policy this country has ever had; he had an army of sailboats with guns.

              John Adams was not a very good President.  I don't remember much about his term but that he was the first President to stomp on the Constitution with his Alien and Sedition Acts.

              •  Good point about Alien and Sedition (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                tommypaine

                Wilson was the worst president on race relations in the 20th century, without a doubt. He supported the KKK, did nothing about lynchings, and segregated the White House. He also got the US into an imperialist bloodbath in World War I. If it weren't for some important good domestic legislation, he would be a good candidate for one of the worst presidents in American history. As it is, his legacy is very mixed but I consider it heavily weighted toward the negative.

                Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:22:22 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Jefferson is way overrated (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                sawolf, MichaelNY, bumiputera

                His supposed conflicted feelings about slavery were nothing of the sort. He was an extremely strong supporter of slaveholding rights, and if anything grew more extreme. The CSA later held Jefferson up as a progenitor, and they really weren't wrong in that; he would almost certainly have supported secession had he been alive.

                Add to that his disastrous economic policies, his desire for an extremely limited federal government... he was not a great president. Influential - not great.

                Wilson was overrated and is now a tad underrated - his record was rightly corrected to reflect his failings on civil rights and civil liberties, but the backlash to him in the academy has arguably gone too far in the other direction, greatly downplaying his real achievements in the domestic sphere and blaming him for major elements of WWI that weren't his doing.

          •  Actually, modern assessments... (4+ / 0-)

            ... are that Washington was a very active figure in his administration, even if Hamilton was something of a prime minister at the time. (And Adams had little-to-no-role in the administration.)

    •  Sometimes I like to fantasize about (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      psychicpanda, MichaelNY

      what America would be like if ol' Scoopnose had been elected President. Or if Vietnam had never happened (giving LBJ the chance to implement his social welfare programs), or if RFK had won in '68, or if McGovern actually had a chance at winning the White House.

      But it's a depressing thing to fantasize about. It's better to be hopeful for the future than to mourn the past.

      Student, Proud Progressive, Science Nerd, and Skeptic. Born and raised in CT-03. "Teach a man to reason, and he'll think for a lifetime."--Phil Plait

      by betelgeux on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:45:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think RFK would have won the Democratic (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades, betelgeux

        nomination in 1968 if he had lived. I would go as far as to say that he was a courageous civil rights leader. His insistence on not cancelling a planned campaign appearance in the black ghetto of Indianapolis on the day Dr. King was assassinated and making a great speech from the heart there was a great moment in American history. It's hard to know whether he would have won the general election, though. The South definitely would have voted for Wallace and Nixon against such a powerful opponent of racism. However, he just might have gotten more votes of people who preferred Nixon's supposed "secret plan" to end the war in Vietnam over Humphrey's association with Johnson.

        Had he won, I have no doubt he would have proposed far-reaching liberal policies. I think the Legislature, given its composition in those days, would have approved most of them. Also, his Supreme Court nominees would have been more liberal than Nixon's, and that would have made some differences, too.

        Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

        by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:29:40 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Our country would look drastically different (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, betelgeux

          as would the Republican party.  I really think had RFK not been shot and assuming he'd win in a squeaker we'd be a lot closer to Social Democracy today than we actually are.  Universal Health Care being just one of many policies that would have been long established.

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

          by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:53:27 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, I agree (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            betelgeux

            Based on what I've read, it seems that Nixon's universal health care plan failed because Congressional Democrats like Senator Kennedy didn't trust him and insisted on single-payer.

            Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

            by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:08:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Partly, although... (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KingofSpades, MichaelNY, betelgeux

              ... Nixon's universal health care proposals also came at major moments of political weakness - first in 1971, when it went nowhere, then a more serious effort in late 1973. That was the effort which Kennedy said he later regretted not supporting. The problem was that the effort was opposed by most Republicans and internally by many in the WH - Nixon was probably sincere in wanting it, but part of the calculation was clearly to sidestep Watergate, and the development of the scandal was a key reason the effort failed.

        •  1968 (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          There were no guarantees had Bobby Kennedy made it to Chicago. Indeed, many people argue Humphrey's delegate lead was insurmountable. It required changing people's minds already pledged to the VP. And he most certainly had no chance without the support of McCarthy. The problem he was likely to have with the latter was that stopping Kennedy became almost as important to that campaign as it had been to defeating Johnson. I do think the convention mess was unlikely however had he lived which might have made it more difficult for Nixon in November.

          But say RFK ends up the nominee. He probably loses Texas. He would have then had to thread a needle through states won by JFK in 1960. Namely Delaware, New Jersey, Illinois and Missouri. That wouldn't have been enough without some combination of other places Humphrey ran close including Alaska, Ohio, Oregon and Kentucky. The last two Nixon carried by 6 points each. Or win California. Again.

          "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 Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 10:34:08 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  I'm old enough for that pic to make me nauseous (0+ / 0-)

      Mr. Gorbachev, establish an Electoral College!

      by tommypaine on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 12:47:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ugh. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, itskevin, MichaelNY, R30A

    Martha Dean, a disgusting Tea Party loon who ran for AG here in CT two years ago, is a Newtown "truther".

    She posted an InfoWars video promoting insane conspiracy theories about the tragedy on her FB page, and when someone pointed out that this was the same group that promotes 9/11 conspiracy theories, she responded:

    Martha Dean: Thanks, Eric. You are right yet, still, even a broken clock is right twice a day. Being wrong once does not mean always wrong. Repond to this info ... what's wrong here?
    January 14 at 11:00pm
    For those who don't know, Dean lost the AG election by a landslide after telling reporters she believed schoolchildren should learn to fire guns in elementary school. It's not surprising that she would make such ridiculous remarks, but it makes them no less disgusting.

    Student, Proud Progressive, Science Nerd, and Skeptic. Born and raised in CT-03. "Teach a man to reason, and he'll think for a lifetime."--Phil Plait

    by betelgeux on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:35:17 AM PST

  •  Colin Powell says GOP should drop voter ID (8+ / 0-)

    http://www.politico.com/...
    He recognizes that it is a cynical ploy with the intended side effect of hurting minority turnout.

    “Should we really have gone after reducing the turnout of voters in those places where we thought it would make a difference? The Republican Party should be a party that says, ‘We want everybody to vote,’ and make it easier to vote and give them a reason to vote for the party, [whereas] not to find ways to keep them from voting at all,” Powell said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/...

    I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

    by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 11:51:27 AM PST

  •  Just saw a facebook post from Not Larry Sabato (7+ / 0-)

    that the Virginia GOP is trying to shove through a redraw of the State Senate map since one of the Dem Senators is in DC for the inauguration.

    https://www.facebook.com/...

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:02:21 PM PST

    •  I followed his twitter stream (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aamail6, MichaelNY

      this must violate the state constitution, which forbids re-redistricting like this.  It seems they are trying to bring the Dems down by one more seat by what it looks like or messing up one or two incumbents they hate.  It must go to court as I recall that this kinda stuff is illegal.

      I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

      by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:18:07 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  On Twitter (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, James Allen
      Ryan Nobles ‏@ryanobles

      Big news in #rva. GOP Sen leaders have just passed a new redistricting plan that could squeeze a Dem out of the Senate. Still developing.
      Retweeted by Jesse Ferguson

      it's all in the game yo

      by Minnesota Mike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:19:13 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  A couple more tweets (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY
        Jesse Ferguson ‏@JesseFFerguson

        Anyone confirm? hearing that VA Republicans are forcing a new partisan redistricting plan through midterm while one Dem Senator is in DC
        Details

        Jesse Ferguson ‏@JesseFFerguson

        (cont) and the one Dem Senator is Civil Rights Leader Henry Marsh in DC for inauguration.
        Details

        it's all in the game yo

        by Minnesota Mike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:20:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  As I said (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        I believe re-redistricting (that isn't required due to, say, courts throwing out an already passed map) is made illegal in the the VA Constitution.

        I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

        by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:21:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  NLS now says that it creates a 6th (0+ / 0-)

          minority majority seat. Maybe in Hampton Roads to take out John Miller and Ralph Northam?

          "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

          by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:31:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Now, I hear it is a Dem seat in Western Virginia (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            HoosierD42

            "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

            by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:40:45 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Article II, Section 6 (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, MichaelNY, LordMike

          of the VA Constitution:

          Members of the House of Representatives of the United States and members of the Senate and of the House of Delegates of the General Assembly shall be elected from electoral districts established by the General Assembly. Every electoral district shall be composed of contiguous and compact territory and shall be so constituted as to give, as nearly as is practicable, representation in proportion to the population of the district. The General Assembly shall reapportion the Commonwealth into electoral districts in accordance with this section in the year 2011 and every ten years thereafter.

          Any such decennial reapportionment law shall take effect immediately and not be subject to the limitations contained in Article IV, Section 13, of this Constitution.

          The districts delineated in the decennial reapportionment law shall be implemented for the November general election for the United States House of Representatives, Senate, or House of Delegates, respectively, that is held immediately prior to the expiration of the term being served in the year that the reapportionment law is required to be enacted. A member in office at the time that a decennial redistricting law is enacted shall complete his term of office and shall continue to represent the district from which he was elected for the duration of such term of office so long as he does not move his residence from the district from which he was elected. Any vacancy occurring during such term shall be filled from the same district that elected the member whose vacancy is being filled.

          This aggression will not stand, man.

          Seriously though, I have to think this would be overturned in court.  The bolded part indicates that redistricting can happen once per decade.

          •  Has anyone found a map yet? (0+ / 0-)

            "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

            by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:02:40 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  They already ignored that (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            They redistricted the US House districts in 2012, not 2011. And nothing happened. What's to stop them from doing this?

            •  Because that was a first time (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              this is re-redistricting.  It doesn't go from a blank slate, but it's not trivial adjustments either.

              I have found a nearby soda fountain that has Fruitopia! My life is complete.

              by KingofSpades on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:06:43 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  It doesn't say they can't (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                MichaelNY, LordMike

                just that they have to do it once every ten years.

                •  I'm a lawyer and the challenge is strong (5+ / 0-)

                  Reading and interpreting statutory language is part of my everyday job, and reading a state constitution provision is not much different than reading a statute.

                  It's not clear-cut, but there is a strong case that the provision's plain meaning is that once per decade is a firm limit.

                  You're saying the provision requires redistricting "at least" once per decade, but no limit on how often.

                  A court would have to look at the origins of this provision of the state constitution, but on its face it looks like a firm limit.  The term "shall" is a command, and the best legal reading, the one I would make if a lawyer giving advice to a client on the most likely meaning of the law, is that the rest of the language imposes the boundaries for frequency of redistricting.  Those boundaries are firm on both sides, both as a floor and a ceiling.  That there was a violation of what year this decade's redistricting was done isn't the same thing, because while it was a clear violation there was no remedy of a time machine to go back and fix it, and a redistricting was still required even if done late.

                  But the legal argument allowing the 2012 redistricting doesn't apply to a mid-decade re-map.

                  Your argument is potentially legally supportable, but it's the weaker argument.

                  I'd challenge this in court for sure if the Governor signs it.

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

                  by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:08:19 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The question would be... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    MichaelNY

                    ...since the new map did not yet go into effect for the Senate (i.e. since there was no election yet in the new boundaries), would this "correction" be allowed to stand , because one can keep "tinkering" with a map all the way up to the election in which it goes into effect.  Only after that election is it "locked" until the next redistricting?

                    GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

                    by LordMike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:37:08 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Under what law must there be an election... (3+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      LordMike, MichaelNY, James Allen

                      ...for the new map to be "in effect"?  I see the logic of your argument, but it's not a legal argument with some kind of law, whether a constitution or a statute or case law, to say that matters.

                      The current map was passed and signed and cleared by DOJ, there is nothing that prevents it from being used, it has no legal or practical vulnerabilities that bring it into question.

                      And there is nothing in that state constitution provision that says that a map duly signed into law can be rewritten just because it hasn't been "used" yet.  There's no language that I can see being interpreted that way.

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

                      by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:49:03 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Thank you! (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        I wanted your expert opinion!  That's the only real loophole I could see the GOP using in their defense.  Thanks for shutting it down!

                        GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

                        by LordMike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:51:59 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  I thought the maps used in 2011 were the (4+ / 0-)

                        ones passed in the bipartisan compromise after the census.  Is that not right?  IIRC one state senator who lost by just a few hundred votes intentionally had heavily black precincts moved out of his district because he was more worried about a primary challenge...

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

                        by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:58:03 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  That's what I was unsure of... (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY, DCCyclone

                          If the maps had already been used, then I don't see what argument they would be able to use in court, other than, "The constitution only says we have to do one every year... it doesn't mean we can't do it more times as well."

                          GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

                          by LordMike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:05:12 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Duh, yes, which I'm embarrassed I forgot... (0+ / 0-)

                          ...in this discussion earlier, since I live here and was personally affected by the map in the 2011 election by having a new state Senator to vote for, the previous moved out of my precinct.

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

                          by DCCyclone on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 08:41:35 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                      •  I just saw this part... (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY, DCCyclone
                        Any such decennial reapportionment law shall take effect immediately and not be subject to the limitations contained in Article IV, Section 13, of this Constitution.
                        That's a pretty clear closed loophole...

                        GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

                        by LordMike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:09:49 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Seems clearly illegal to me. (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY

                          And assuming the map is struck down, it could seriously backfire on them in November.

                          24, Practical Progressive Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

                          by HoosierD42 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:28:57 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

            •  Well, (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              KingofSpades, MichaelNY, LordMike

              even if they were a bit late, the redistricting was still in response to the population changes revealed in the decennial census.  This is not.  Redistricting is never mentioned outside the context of the decennial census in the VA Constitution.

      •  I wonder which seat it tries to change that much? (0+ / 0-)

        to squeeze a Dem seat to a GOP seat?

        "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

        by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:21:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  What a shock (5+ / 0-)

      I could not have possibly guessed the Republicans would do something scummy like this, after their completely fair treatment of the Democrats in the 20-20 tie situation last year.

    •  The maps are in the comments here: (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, HoosierD42

      http://www.bluevirginia.us/...

      The "new" majority-minority district stretches from Danville to Franklin, nearly half the length of Virginia.

  •  I hope someone important reads the minutes of the (6+ / 0-)

    Senate today and publicizes it widely. Was this necessary on this day of all days:

    "On motion of Senator Stosch, the Senate adjourned in memory or General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson at 4:10 p.m. to convene Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 12 m."

    http://leg1.state.va.us/...

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 01:25:59 PM PST

  •  From NLS on the VA Senate Power Grab: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, LordMike, DCCyclone

    http://notlarrysabato.typepad.com/...

    They seem to have weakened a lot of other Dems, while helping Dave Marsden. I hope a map is posted soon

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:16:32 PM PST

    •  Reading through the changes... (6+ / 0-)

      It weakens seven Democratic districts: 01 (John Miller), 06 (Ralph Northam), 21 (John Edwards), 29 (Chuck Colgan), 33 (Mark Herring), 38 (Phil Puckett) and 39 (George Barker). They're trying for a 27-13 majority.

      •  Miller is gone under this map (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike

        becomes a 55/44 McCain and 58/42 GOP seat

        "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

        by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:03:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Looks like they (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen

      added Poquoson to Sen. John Miller's (D-Newport News) seat and Sen. John Edwards (D-Roanoke) gains a lot of rural counties while losing Blacksburg.

      Sen. Creigh Deeds (D-Bath) and Sen. Emmett Hanger (R-Mt. Solon) are placed into a seat of the cities of Charlottesville, Waynesboro, and Staunton, part of Ablemarle County, and all of Bath, Highland and Augusta counties.

      "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

      by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:34:15 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Given the BS the VA GOP Pulled today... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sulthernao

    Sen Warner should announce he'll run for Governor.  This would blow Cuccinelli out of the water - and he could announce his run based on the scummy games the Va GOP played with the secret redistricting while Dems were in Washington to celebrate the inauguration.  

    Of course that would put the Va Sen seat in play for 2014 where McConnell or Cuccinelli could win that for the next 20 years...

    In the very least Terry McAuliffe should raise a huge stink over this and paint the Va GOP as wholly corrupt.  

    "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

    by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:44:55 PM PST

    •  No need, mark my words McAuliffe will win (5+ / 0-)

      Even 1 on 1 vs. Cuccinelli I bet he wins by at least 5, but with Bolling looking ready to enter the race there is no realistic scenario in which McAuliffe doesn't win should that happen.

      Warner needs to stay in the senate and hold that seat down so that McDonnell or any Republican can get nowhere close.

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

      by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:57:15 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I like our odds against Cuccinelli... (5+ / 0-)

        But I hope McAuliffe really makes a stink about this - bald political power grab and make the whole of the VA GOP own it.  Also could get Bolling to comment, and then maybe draw Cuccinelli in to offer his support for the move.  

        "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

        by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 02:58:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  If this plan has the intended effect (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, LordMike

          Virginia GOP will have 2/3 majority in both houses, which means they are effectively the Governor.  

          I'm wondering if they did this because they sense Cuccinelli is going to lose and this was their only shot to ram through a redistricting plan (they're in what they call the "short session" which means they don't stay in Richmond very long this year; when they come back next year, there will be a new Gov)

      •  sawolf you are completely wrong (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        James Allen, LordMike, MichaelNY

        This will be a dogfight, you are completely overstating our odds.

        If I were forced today to guess a November winner, I'd pick TMac without hesitation, but with the expectation that a 5-point margin is very close to his ceiling, not a floor.  
        Bolling makes it a little easier, yes, but not much so.

        I'm noticing some people here, not many but some, seem to have a blind spot regarding TMac's own vulnerables.  He has real liabilities in his resume and image, and frankliy Cooch is the only GOP nominee he can beat.  There are good reasons why a lot of us 4 years ago picked Deeds over TMac and Brian Moran in the primary.

        TMac is in a stronger absolute position now than then, but not by a lot.  His only major advantage is that Cooch is a kook.  But make no mistake, Cuccinelli can win, his odds are 50-50 or close to it.

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

        by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:48:45 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  There's really no way of knowing at this point but (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, LordMike

          I think you are underestimating Cuccinelli's vulnerabilities too though to be clear I agree that McAuliffe has some of his own.

          Maybe the 5% margin is more of a ceiling and that's really just conjecture at this point anyway, so I'll rephrase it.  I think McAuliffe's odds of winning 1 vs 1 with Cuccinelli are somewhere north of 50%, maybe around 60% as things stand today.  However if Bolling enters the race I don't see how Cuccinelli pulls out a plurality win barring a big downturn in the economy.  Every poll I've ever seen of the state shows him far, far less popular than McDonnell and he makes a poor case for continuing McDonnell's legacy.

          If it becomes clear further down the road that Cuccinelli really can win then I'll certainly be eating Crow, but I think there's a good case to be made right now that the race is Lean D.

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

          by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:01:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  You are overstating Cooch's vulnerabilities (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MichaelNY

            You are assuming that swing voters see Cuccinelli the same as you and I see him.

            That's not true.

            Some of them see him that way, but they are outnumbered by swing voters who have no impression of him at all and are very persuadable by the campaigns.  And it's dangerous to underestimate Cuccinelli as a campaigner, his whole career has consisted of improbable wins.

            Let's put it this way, we are less confident of TMac beating Cooch this year than Virginia Democrats were of Kaine beating Farris in the L.G. race in 2001.  We are confident, and again if I had to bet all I have on someone I'd bet on TMac......but it's a nailbiter we're expecting.

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

            by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:41:49 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No, I'm just assuming what I see in polling (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              SaoMagnifico

              McAuliffe is generic Democrat who of course doesn't have any individual weakness.  Obviously McAuliffe would do worse than "Democratic Jesus."

              On the other hand, Cucinelli is a lot better known and significantly underwater at that.  He clearly is a huge step below generic R, that's something that obviously you and I would believe, but is apparently something that the voters of the state also believe.

              To me this isn't like the 2009 race where it was obvious to liberal ideologues but not the median voter that McDonnell was a hard right winger, we have ample evidence that Cuccinelli is unpopular with the electorate at large and that's what leads me to the conclusion that the race today is Lean D, though to clarify that's with Bolling's candidacy looking likely.  Without him to siphon off that tiny but crucial sliver of center-right Republicans I agree that it's definitely going to be a dogfight but that McAuliffe is still more likely than not to win.

              To give you some data that's guiding my opinion of the race, PPP's 2009 election eve poll had McDonnell at an auspicious 55/35 and Deeds at 39/45.  Their most recent poll of the state had Cuccinelli heavily underwater at 29/45 and McAuliffe at 25/26.

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

              by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:06:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  No individual weakness? (0+ / 0-)

                I think too many DKEers are forgetting the last Gubernatorial campaign in VA. McAuliffe was seen as so insincere and opportunistic that he was defeated in the primaries by Creigh Deeds. Yet you think he's a generic D?

                Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

                by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:31:19 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, you're misreading it (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY

                  I meant in polling McAuliffe is Generic D so of course his numbers don't factor in his individual weaknesses yet.  With Cuccinelli it appears that voters already have some exposure to his weaknesses and that's readily apparent in the favorability numbers.

                  I'll admit I don't have a great feel for how much drop off Democrats should expect between registered voters (as polling now would show) and likely voters on November 5th aside from it being a not-insignificant amount, but then again I don't think anyone here really knows either since 2009's turnout was such an aberration due to a variety of factors that won't be replicated exactly this year.  Still, I trust PPP in Virginia over Quinnipiac due to their longer history in the state and their nailing the election last year, but even just averaging the two it seems pretty obvious to me that Cuccinelli is a flawed candidate and that his flaws are more likely than not more damaging than McAuliffe's, so that's what makes me think that despite his potential negatives, McAuliffe's campaign can overcome them vs. Cuccinelli.

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

                  by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:40:36 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Polls are split, not as clear as you think (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                sawolf, itskevin, MichaelNY

                PPP has Cooch underwater, but still with a lot of "no opinion" responses.

                Q-poll has him much more break-even, even slighty positive, with much higher undecideds.

                Both pollsters have had this split consistently over time in their few Virginia polls testing Cooch and TMac.

                The common thread is high undecideds, Q-poll just showing more, and in no case are Cooch's negatives hitting 50 or very close to it...I think PPP had him at 45 once, maybe their last survey, but that's as bad as it's been.

                These are not fatal numbers at all.

                Meanwhile, TMac's numbers have been happily mostly break-even with sky-high undecideds, but that just disguises his clear-cut weaknesses.  The GOP would have to do a real bad job of exploting his vulnerabilities for TMac to get through the year without seeing his negatives rise.  TMac is a guy with no public service, with high-profile partisan warfare his biggest point of notoriety, and a "job creating" business background he boasts that really is a lot closer to Romney-lite investing than genuine entrepreneurialism.  There are warts in his history in these areas that are easy to spin into a damaging story, if TMac doesn't get ahead of his own biography and successfully define himself first.

                I am rightly more nervous than you about this race.  I wouldn't be with almost anyone else.

                What I wish is that 4 years ago Deeds would've run for A.G. a second time instead of Governor.  TMac would've beaten Moran and then been crushed by McDonnell, but Deeds almost certainly would've beaten Cooch on the strength of Deeds' good showing in 2005 as something to give him a boost with voters over the obviously extreme Cooch.  As it went, we ran a no-name vs. Cooch who couldn't overcome coattails.  Of course, then Deeds would be running disastrously for Governor now, almost certainly losing big to Bill Bolling.  If TMac wins, we will have ended up much better off than that, but for now it's at the risk of having Kook as Governor.

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

                by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:31:55 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I think TMac was hurt as a Clintonite... (0+ / 0-)

          there was some left over hard feelings, as Terry was pretty front and center for the Hillary campaign.  He also seemed to decide to run out of nowhere, almost like "Hell, Hillary lost, I wasn't expecting that, might as well give the Va Gov a try..."

          Not saying he would have beat McDonnell, but I think the pro-Obama, anti-Clinton feelings from enough people was probably enough to cost him the primary.  

          At least that's the feeling I got watching the race unfold as an outsider.  

          "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

          by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:29:06 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, that was not a factor at all (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            James Allen, MichaelNY

            I was here for the race and voted here, there was no residual feeling from the Presidential primaries.

            The primary voting was based exclusively on what voters thought of the candidates.  It was simply that TMac and Moran were obviously weak choices, and Deeds at least had a "centrist" image he might be able to leverage in purple and red areas of the state.  Plus Deeds had lost a razor-thin race to McDonnell in the '05 A.G. race, and that both gave Deeds a little name rec with primary voters plus made us feel like he's been there and done that, he knows the opponent and could learn from the previous time against him.

            No one at all cared about TMac supporting Hillary in the primaries.  That was not a factor.

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

            by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:41:43 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  reposting 'cause I didn't see this thread (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades

    first 1/3 of the OR state legislative CPVIs done

    hd1 R+13 (R trend)
    hd2 R+14 (D trend)
    hd3 R+11 (R trend)
    hd4 R+16 (D trend)
    hd5 D+9 (R trend)
    hd6 R+7 (D trend)
    hd7 R+9 (R trend)
    hd8 D+18 (D trend)
    hd9 R+1 (R trend)
    hd10 D+5 (D trend)
    hd11 D+7 (R trend)
    hd12 D+7 (D trend)
    hd13 D+14 (D trend)
    hd14 D+6 (D trend)
    hd15 R+5 (R trend)
    hd16 D+19 (D trend)
    hd17 R+14 (R trend)
    hd18 R+11 (R trend)
    hd19 R+5 (R trend)
    hd20 D+1 (D trend)

    sd1 R+13 (R trend)
    sd2 R+13 (R trend)
    sd3 D+2 (R trend)
    sd4 D+6 (R trend)
    sd5 D+2 (D trend)
    sd6 D+7 (R trend)
    sd7 D+10 (D trend)
    sd8 D+7 (D trend)
    sd9 R+13 (R trend)
    sd10 R+2 (R trend)

    Bolded districts are held by the party that is not favored by PVI.

    In some districts I think the "trend" is as much because of errors I made in assigning precincts in 2004 and 2008 as it is a real trend.  For example, I think in HD11 I overestimated the portion of the district that was in Eugene.  It is the only district that is substantially in Eugene which did not move one or two points more Democratic in 2012.  In HD5 and HD6 I struggled because Jackson County split precincts between the two districts.  In others, like the rural districts (HD9, 17, 18) which tended to trend R, and the urban Eugene (HD8, 13, 14) and Corvallis (HD16) districts, which shifted substantially more Democratic, I think it tended to be real movement.  To be clear, the trend is not comparing 2008 to 2012, but the 2004/08 PVI to the 2008/12 PVI.

    Maps, as you see there these districts start in southwestern Oregon and make their way up to Salem.  The house districts are nested in pairs in the senate districts, in the same order, so HDs 1 and 2 are SD1, HDs 19 and 20 are SD10.

    ...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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 03:08:23 PM PST

  •  Wondering how Virginia GOP celebrated MLK Day? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    "Republicans in the Virginia Senate today "pushed through a surprise rewrite of the 2011 redistricting plan that erases a Democratic seat in western Virginia," the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports.

     The revised plan cleared the Senate on a party-line vote of 20-19 as Sen. Henry Marsh (D), a 79-year old civil rights veteran, was attending President Obama's inauguration ceremony."

    (Stay classy, guys).

    "They will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the American economy. The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not a bargaining chip."

    by TofG on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:10:24 PM PST

    •  Why didn't the rest of the Dems pull a Wisconsin? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bumiputera

      And up and leave?  Also Mr. Marsh should have been there because the Va GOP cannot be trusted.  

      The Va GOP obviously have no shame.  Every one of the state senators, every one went along with this stunt.  Hyper-partisanship at it's brazen worst.

      "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

      by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:03:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Absolutely vile (7+ / 0-)

      I've been amazed by Republican chicanery before, but this is just a new low. Exploit the absence of a black state senator who is a veteran of the civil rights movement and is across the Potomac watching the swearing-in of America's first black president on Martin Luther King Jr. Day by passing a nakedly partisan gerrymander on a party-line vote, and then having the gall to claim they were just trying to increase black representation in Richmond.

      Every single Republican member of the Virginia Senate is scum. This is disenfranchisement, plain and simple.

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

      by SaoMagnifico on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 07:05:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  VA- Bolling was a no; what will he do? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, LordMike

    Since Lt. Gov.  Bolling would have voted no on the GOP gerrymander, I would imagine he's pissed about the Republicans going around him on the vote. Do you think this makes him more likely to run as an independent and buck his party on tie votes? Could he choose to caucus with the Democrats or force some kind of split control of the committees? This could get interesting.

    •  There's no "caucusing" opportunity for him (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      James Allen, LordMike, MichaelNY, itskevin

      He's the L.G., not a state Senator, he votes only to break ties on a vote-by-vote basis and isn't a member of any caucus.  He votes however he wants in every case, too.

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

      by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:27:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  But he gave Republicans control in 2012 (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, MichaelNY

        There was a vote at the start of the session to determine who would control the chamber. IIRC he broke the tie in that vote and allowed the Republicans to control all the committees. If the Democrats called for a vote to determine control, couldn't he break the tie and put them in power?

  •  Will Bob McDonnell approve this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, LordMike

    I know most people here have a negative opinion of Governor Ultrasound but I have a hard time believing even he would pass something as blatantly partisan as this.

    Besides that, if it's Creigh Deeds' seat then this would really be an asshole move.  McDonnell already crushed and humiliated him by 17 points in the Gov race, now he has to destroy his legislative career too?

    •  I think he will and I don't him on it at all (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, MichaelNY, James Allen

      Passing the plan now will destroy Terry McAuliffe's ability to govern.  There's just way too much for Republicans to gain from this than there is to lose; it's impossible to reverse unless Democrats win the governorship in 2017 and even then, it's possible Republicans might have a two-thirds majority able to override our veto.

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

      by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:33:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't *trust him on it at all (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, MichaelNY

        is what that should have read.

        I think McDonnell realizes he has really nowhere else to go at the moment, so why not be as aggressively partisan as possible?

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

        by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:34:16 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  What would it do to McDonnell's WH aspirations? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike

        Will he sign off on a redistricting that took advantage of a civil rights fighter missing the proceedings to attend the Presidential inauguration?

        I guess he will, as this stunt was obviously coordinated with him.  I just hope National senate Dems are watching and this guy is blocked from any future cabinet spot for this dirty dealing.  

        "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

        by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:05:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's inside baseball (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sawolf, MichaelNY, LordMike, James Allen

          The average voter doesn't care about this kind of thing.

          •  If this is the case how do some states... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            LordMike

            get enough votes for an independent redistricting committee?  If Dems don't raise a stink on this than nobody will care.  They need to make people aware so it will hurt McDonnell.  

            "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

            by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:47:32 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Those states have the ballot initiative... (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              James Allen, LordMike, MichaelNY

              Virginia does not, as don't most southern states.

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

              by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:53:08 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I understand. But ballot initiatives... (0+ / 0-)

                means enough voters were aware enough about the issue and convinced enough to vote for the change. To me that says people do care about gerrymandering and unadulterated power grabs.  

                This move won't help McDonnell at all - he gains nothing from it - so if enough of a shitstorm was raised he might figure it's not worth it for his personal aspirations.  

                If folks want to call it insider baseball and shrug their shoulders than surely McDonnell will sign it as there would be no fall out against him.  

                "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

                by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:04:33 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Being divisive and partisan is how you get noticed (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  sawolf, MichaelNY, LordMike

                  in the national Republican political sphere. McDonnell wanted to be the VP pick but had no chance because he's such a bland, faceless Republican. Doing this kind of thing will only help his standing among Republican primary voters, and it's not going to hurt him any if he manages to become the nominee 3 1/2 years from now. He'll be out of office next January, he needs to do something to distinguish himself from the rest of the pack. (And better this than his toll deal, which is likely to blow up in the face of his successor.)

                •  Okay let me put it this way (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  James Allen, LordMike, MichaelNY

                  Voters care about it as a standalone issue, so when it's on the ballot by itself, redistricting reform typically passes.

                  However, voters don't care enough about it for that to overcome their partisan considerations so it makes it very difficult to campaign against a person by attacking them on gerrymandering.  That's why it's inside baseball compared to more tangible issues like whether taxes should go up or down.

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

                  by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:13:32 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Normally true but this one is unique (5+ / 0-)

            This is a power grab that will get more than normal news attention, and has a chance to draw real dismay from Virginia swing voters.

            It has the potential, too, of helping McAuliffe by warning statewide voters that Cucinelli winning means one-party rule by a party that they're not enamored with.  It can help drive up base Democratic turnout in addition to winning TMac some swing votes driven by fear.

            I know some here think voters don't care about checks and balances, but that's not true and elections prove it.  Whenever we've had a wave election in a federal election in my lifetime, it's been a backlash against one-party rule, the one exception being 1974 when it was a Watergate backlash.

            There is already plenty of base Democratic fear and loathing of Cooch, and swing voters are at least somewhat uneasy with him to the extent they have opinions.  This is the sort of thing that can drive them over.

            I wouldn't be surprised if McDonnell considers this, as well as his own WH aspirations which I think could be affected more than people realize.  This just looks bad and has the potential only to hurt him, not at all to help him since he'll never personally enjoy the fruits of the power grab.

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

            by DCCyclone on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:26:01 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  in general I think there aren't enough of those (4+ / 0-)

              voters to matter, but in a low turnout affair like Virginia off year elections it could matter.

              ...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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:47:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  This reminds me of Gov. Brewer's... (4+ / 0-)

              Failed attempt to make an end-run around the popularly approved independent redistricting commission. She ended up losing in court and her approvals tanked, IIRC.

              Redistricting tends to make people's eyes glaze over when you lay out the whole process. But this is easy to explain. "While a Democratic senator was attending the inauguration, Republicans suddenly put an insane gerrymander up to a vote and passed it with their temporary majority, then claimed they were trying to support civil rights." Nothing about special masters, no communities of interest, no amended plan F. Republicans waited until a Democrat was out of state, then rushed through an insane gerrymander.

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

              by SaoMagnifico on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:08:01 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Virginia Senate: DRA (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    There are some pretty nasty things that can be done with this map.  I actually tried a Republican gerrymander of the Senate before and this is what you can get:

    - One seat in Western VA that goes from Roanoke to Charlottesville (~65% Obama)
    - Three seats between Hampton Roads & Richmond that absorb all the minority precincts (all ~80-90% Obama)
    - Nine or ten seats in Northern Virginia to suck up all the Dem Precincts there.  The Dem votes in NoVa are more diluted so they all have to be around 70% Obama or so.

    That's it.  With that map you can be sure Republicans would win 27 seats, which is a two-thirds majority.

    •  I am mapping it out on DRA right now (0+ / 0-)

      they are splitting a lot of precincts that make it more difficult. These are really nasty looking districts.

      "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

      by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:37:46 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh yeah (0+ / 0-)

        They'll probably carve up NoVa pretty good, then.  It's hard to get many Republican districts up there using whole precincts because many of them have 10,000+ population.

        •  I have finished the map except NoVa (0+ / 0-)

          this is looking bad so far. John Miller is gone. Creigh Deeds is most likely gone. Ralph Northam and John Edwards are in big trouble. Phil Puckett's seat becomes even tougher for him.

          "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

          by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 05:09:38 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  So (5+ / 0-)

    I didn't watch the inauguration live, but I'm watching the only things I care to watch (I read the speech's transcript, not the video).

    Beyonce's performance and Kelly Clarkson's performance. Kelly started out shaky in her lower register, but damn she ROCKED the end:

    http://www.youtube.com/...

    She has such a powerful and beautiful voice. I'm glad she was chosen for this and not the anthem, given that she sucks at singing that (go watch some videos of her trying and failing...).

    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 Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 04:43:57 PM PST

  •  McDonnell doesnt sound enthusiastic about (5+ / 0-)

    the redistricting, but not clear if he would veto.

    According to the twitter page of reporter Chelyen Davis,  a McDonnell spokesperson said the redistricting proposal was a surprise and that his priorities are the budget, education and transportation, not redistricting.

    But I guess Rick Snyder also said RTW wasnt a priority and he signed it.

    •  Basically he's hedging to see if a stink is raised (8+ / 0-)

      It's up to Dems in Va to raise that stink.   McAuliffe should be all raising hell because this gerrymandering they forced through will give the GOP 2/3rds in both House and Senate, veto-proof majorities.  

      McDonnell has no benefit from signing this - so Dems need to make it painful for him with his future aspirations.  If they can convince him that it will stick with him then he might not sign it.  Have Kaine and Warner say they'll filibuster any future cabinet nomination he gets.  Have Sharpton go don't to Virginia to make it a national issue how the VA GOP exploited a civil rights fighter's desire to be at the inauguration etc.  

      "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

      by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:09:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I drew the VA Senate districts as best I could (0+ / 0-)

    The 2011 result is noted after the change in performance.

    SD-01 - 57-42 Obama to 55-45 McCain; 52-48 Miller
    SD-06 - 56-43 Obama to 50-50 Obama; 57-43 Northam
    SD-21 - 56-43 Obama to 50-48 McCain; 56-44 Edwards
    SD-29 - 61-38 Obama to 53-46 Obama; 55-45 Colgan
    SD-33 - 59-40 Obama to 55-44 Obama; 54-46 Herring
    SD-38 - 58-40 McCain to 60-38 McCain; 53-47 Puckett
    SD-39 - 58-41 Obama to 54-45 Obama; 53-47 Barker

    Easily a pickup of 4-6 seats for the Republicans with this map.

    •  I'm surprised they didn't go for a Western VA (0+ / 0-)

      vote sink.  Edwards & Puckett could survive with that map (although it depends which counties are left in Puckett's district).  Miller is obviously toast.  Northam's district will probably go Republican since he's running for Lt. Gov.  The NoVa districts are harder to tell since there are split precincts, I assume they are all a few points more Republican than you have.  But all of the NoVa Democrats listed will have very tough fights for re-election.

      Did they leave Deeds completely untouched?

      •  Edwards' current district (0+ / 0-)

        is pretty much a vote sink, since it's Roanoke, Blacksburg, and some connecting territory. There's not much you can do to make Puckett's district more unfavorable, due to geography.

        Deeds' district was completely dismantled; he was put into the Augusta County-based 24th.

  •  Here is my best maps for the VA Sen (0+ / 0-)

    State view
     photo Virginia-West_zpsc93a8f8b.jpg

    Richmond
     photo Virginia-Richmond_zps98f3db57.jpg

    Hampton Roads
     photo Virginia-HamptonRoads_zps2d91f626.jpg

    Northern Virginia
     photo Virginia-Northern_zps66973830.jpg

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:30:19 PM PST

    •  Not as aggressive as they could have drawn (0+ / 0-)

      but I guess they were concerned about keeping Republican incumbents safe.  It looks like Deeds is doomed, though.  Poor guy.  What a loser - he and Bolling should run together.

      Edwards & Puckett may survive.   However SW VA seems to have had a fundamental transition toward the Republican party recently so that may not be the case.

      •  Deeds might be okay (0+ / 0-)

        Charlottesville and Albemarle would come close to cancelling out the portions of the Valley he now has.

        26, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

        by okiedem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:38:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Deeds gets a 49.5/49.4 Obama seat (0+ / 0-)

          with a 46.4/53.6 GOP leaning seat, but you have to count on the Charlottesville precincts not turning out so well in a state senate race.

          "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

          by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:41:03 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Isn't Deeds pretty moderate though? (0+ / 0-)

            What were the numbers on his old district and how did he do in the 2011 election?

            Also that partisan average difference from Obama's numbers is just a tiny bit wider than the statewide difference, so I think there must be a lot of rural precincts where Dems perform considerably better than Obama to counterbalance the drop off from Charlottesville.

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

            by sawolf on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:47:52 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  He'll pretty massively outperform in Bath and (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KingofSpades, James Allen

            Highland county though (he even won thumping margins against McDonnell in those areas in 2009). Although that's much less populous than the other portions of the district it would make a difference if he can keep turnout respectable in Cville and Albemarle.

            26, originally OK-1, currently NY-10. Former swingnut.

            by okiedem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:49:01 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Oops (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bumiputera

          I was thinking he would run in the Alleghany County district.  You're right, he lives in Bath County.

          Still hoping for a Bolling/Deeds feel-sorry-for-yourself ticket though. :)

  •  McDonnell vetoed a redistricting plan (6+ / 0-)

    because the State Senate plan was too partisan in his mind (despite the House of Delegates plan) the last time. Let's see if he uses the same logic this time or if he sings this piece of junk.

    "So there's a time for silence, and there's a time for waiting your turn. But if you know how you feel, and you so clearly know what you need to say, you'll know it. I don't think you should wait. I think you should speak now." -Taylor Swift

    by SouthernINDem on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 06:58:09 PM PST

  •  What's the VA supreme court situation? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, itskevin, tk421

    From my small bit of sleuthing, it looks like at least 4-3 Dem.  Anyone have more info?

    GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

    by LordMike on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 08:14:49 PM PST

    •  The justices of the VA Supreme Court (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      Are elected by both houses of the legislature. Now, a 5-2 majority of the justices were elected when Democrats were in control of the state Senate, but all these Justices were also elected by a Republican House of Delegates. I have no idea what this means.

      24, Practical Progressive Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

      by HoosierD42 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:38:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Upon further investigation.. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, LordMike

        Two justices were appointed by Tim Kaine, then retroactively elected by the legislature. One was appointed by George Allen.

        Of the other 4 justices:
        1 is former Republican AG Bill Mims
        1 is African-American
        1 was first appointed to a Virginia court by George Allen
        and the last in unclear. She was elected to the Court in 2011.

        24, Practical Progressive Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Defeat Wacky Jackie for 2014!

        by HoosierD42 on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:44:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The last one sounds like a republican... (0+ / 0-)

          She's from SW Virginia and was recommended by the house.

          So, it's 4-3 against us, with some of the older GOP'ers possibly being swing votes.  It's a question of how ideological/partisan this court is.  Since they are elected by the assembly, if they side with the mid decade redistricting, then they would be locks to be renominated/elected.  A couple of the justices are approaching mandatory retirement, though.

          Maybe the VA GOP has gamed it all out with the courts.

          GODSPEED TO THE WISCONSIN FOURTEEN!

          by LordMike on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 02:33:22 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  question about catholics in the Northeast (0+ / 0-)

    what percent of catholics would you say, support abortion rights in the bluest NE states (MA, NY, RI)? Although there are plenty of pro-life politicians in said states, the states overall have some of the more liberal abortion laws in the country.

    What I find interesting is that those states also happen to be the most heavily catholic in the country? So do a lot of catholics there support abortion rights or is it sort of like Mississippi where having a large black population doesn't automatically make it a dem stronghold (ie racial polarization or in the case of the NE, religious polarization)

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

    by demographicarmageddon on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 09:57:17 PM PST

    •  I don't know what the figures are specifically (3+ / 0-)

      in the Northeast, but nationwide, figures on support for choice among Catholics have been very similar to figures on support from the public, overall.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 10:47:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  MichaelNY is correct (4+ / 0-)

      Catholics nationwide are about the same on abortion as non-Catholics.  A lot of people talk about "The Catholic vote" like they're some monolithic, homogeneous group of unified political persuasion (often stereotyped to be culturally conservative on abortion and gay rights, yet liberal on spending and taxation), when that's hardly the case.  There's massive differences in Catholics around the country depending on their ancestry, from those of Irish in New England, Cuban in Florida, Polish and German in the Great Lakes states, French in Louisiana, Filipino in Hawaii...even in the same area (such as Puerto Rican vs. Italian in New York), and of the same ethnicity in different areas, such as Mexican in Texas vs. California.

      They are such disparate people that I don't think there's any real conclusions to be drawn from studies that group them all together, any more than there are from studies or polls of "Western states" which lump in states like California, Utah, New Mexico, and Montana despite the vast demographic and political differences.  In short, Catholics tend to have similar numbers to the overall population because they are so diverse that they represent a sizable cross-section of the country.

      Anyway, to return to the original question, I'd guess the Catholics in New England are pretty similar on abortion to non-Catholics in New England, as they are nationally.  That's just a guess, but seems to stack up with what I've seen (anecdotally and otherwise) of Catholics from the northeast.  They tend to be fairly independent of church orthodoxy and are reflective of what you would expect based on the region's political leanings: that is, pro-choice and pretty liberal on all issues.

    •  a lot of Catholics in RI are "cafeteria Catholics" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      RI is def a pro-choice state.

      Living in Kyoto-06 (Japan), voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

      by sapelcovits on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 01:23:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Minority Bolshevism Sidead (0+ / 0-)

    Of all the DKE ads the one linking to that book's Amazon site is the most out of place ad I've seen. Is anyone else getting it?

    21, Male, Latino-Spanish, OK-1 (Tulsa: The Art Deco, Terracotta, and Cultural Gem of Green Country!)

    by gigantomachyusa on Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 04:20:53 AM PST

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