by Darryl, 03/30/2012, 11:58 PM

Thom: The Good, the Bad, and the Very, Very Ugly.

Roy Zimmerman: Texas verse of “Vote Republican”.

Medicare, Affordable Care, and Health Care:

Jennifer Granholm: Outrage over the war on women is deafening.

Alyona’s Tool Time Award: Sen. Rand Paul shills for Big Oil.

V.P. Biden says “Thank you, Dr. Pepper” to Dr. Paper.

Stephen on Obama’s secret plot to not take away your guns.

The G.O.P. CrazyFest:

Greenman: What we knew about global warming in 1982.

Thom with more Good, Bad, and Very, Very Ugly.

White House: West Wing Week:

Jon: Obama’s hot mic gaffe.

Sam Seder: It isn’t just phone hacking for Newscorp anymore.

Death Sentence for Trayvon:

Roy Zimmerman: Utah verse of “Vote Republican”.

Thom with The Good, the Bad, and the Very, Very Ugly.

Obama: Repeal subsidies for oil companies.

Liberal Viewer: FAUX News’ biased reporting on CA prisons.

Sam Seder: Dick Cheney has a heart.

Last week’s Friday Night Multimedia Extravaganza can be found here.

by Carl, 03/30/2012, 8:57 PM

I was looking around editorial pages for something to make fun of, and instead I found this great opinion piece in the Yakima Herrald-Republic.

My faith is important to me. And I believe that religious faith is a fundamental human right that government should not restrict. My faith may be different from my evangelist neighbor’s in that I believe that two consenting adults who love each other should be allowed to be married no matter what their gender mix is, and I believe that more ethically responsible decisions can be made by women who have access to contraception and abortion services. So no, I don’t feel that my faith, anyway, is under attack.

But I do feel that something is amiss. Our Constitution, thankfully, says that government shall not restrict the free exercise of religion; but I don’t see in any of these examples the government doing that. The government is not requiring people to marry someone of the same gender, or mandating that people take birth control. I understand that filling a “Plan B” prescription may be counter to someone’s religious values, but that is not the same as exercising one’s religion. The Catholic Church is not being asked to actually take birth control pills; they are only being asked to provide reasonable coverage for health benefits like all other employers, and pharmacists are being asked to simply do their jobs. These examples have nothing to do with religious practice.

by Darryl, 03/30/2012, 7:11 PM
Obama Romney
100.0% probability of winning 0.0% probability of winning
Mean of 347 electoral votes Mean of 191 electoral votes

There have been fourteen new state head-to-head polls taken since my previous analysis of the race between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

No big surprises in them. Obama leads Romney in the three classic swing states of Florida, Pennsylvania poll and Ohio (twice). Obama also leads in Virginia and three Wisconsin polls. On the other hand, Nebraska CD 2 has swing slightly in favor of Romney.

start end sample % % %
st poll date date size MOE O R diff
AR Talk Business-Hendrix College 26-Mar 26-Mar 759 3.6 33.0 56.5 R+23.5
CT Quinnipiac 14-Mar 19-Mar 1622 2.4 53 37 O+16
FL Quinnipiac 20-Mar 26-Mar 1228 2.8 49 42 O+7
MA PPP 16-Mar 18-Mar 936 3.2 58 35 O+23
NE PPP 22-Mar 25-Mar 1028 3.1 39 51 R+12
NE1 PPP 22-Mar 25-Mar 432 41 49 R+8
NE2 PPP 22-Mar 25-Mar 277 45 46 R+1
NE3 PPP 22-Mar 25-Mar 319 31 57 R+26
NH ARG 15-Mar 18-Mar 557 4.2 48 41 O+7
OH Rasmussen 26-Mar 26-Mar 500 4.5 48 40 O+8
OH Quinnipiac 20-Mar 26-Mar 1246 2.8 47 41 O+6
OR SurveyUSA 14-Mar 19-Mar 1615 2.5 49.8 38.8 O+11.0
PA Quinnipiac 20-Mar 26-Mar 1232 2.8 45 42 O+3
VA PPP 20-Mar 20-Mar 500 4.5 51 42 O+9
WI Rasmussen 27-Mar 27-Mar 500 4.5 52 41 O+11
WI Marist 26-Mar 27-Mar 1400 2.6 52 35 O+17
WI Marquette Law School 22-Mar 25-Mar 707 48.2 43.2 O+4.9

The previous analysis had Obama leading Romney by an average of 339 to 199 electoral votes. Now, after 100,000 simulated elections, Obama still wins all 100,000 times. Obama receives (on average) 347 to Romney’s 191 electoral votes.

Electoral College Map

Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Lousiana Maine Maryland Massachusettes Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia D.C. Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

Electoral College Map

Georgia Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Delaware Connecticut Florida Mississippi Alabama Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia D.C. Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

Here is the distribution of electoral votes [FAQ] from the simulations:
Read the rest of this entry »

by Carl, 03/30/2012, 8:15 AM

Yesterday I attended an open house for several transit agencies to discuss the elimination of the free ride area in September. It was mostly what you know already if you’re paying attention. Starting September 29, every route will be pay as you enter, and what’s now the free ride area will just be part of the Seattle zones for Metro and ST.

The one thing that I hadn’t realized (and I didn’t notice until I was reviewing one of the handouts on the way home, so I didn’t get to ask anyone about it) was that they are considering ways to help poor people get around. These include “increase the number of human service tickets provided to the agencies” and to “operate a free circulator.”

I wish I had a chance to ask someone about it, but the two questions that come to mind are who would operate it and how do they keep it from becoming a rolling homeless shelter? I assume that the question of who operates it hasn’t been worked out since the entire idea seems to still be up in the air. As for the homeless people: of course there should be services for them, but the bus isn’t that.

I’d like a circulator through the urban core (and both ways if it’s not just up and down the same street), free or not. But I’m not sure free is the better way to go.

by Carl, 03/29/2012, 7:49 PM

You know, I hate to say it, but the trolls are right. This blog isn’t fair to conservatives. We exclude their voices and we don’t take them seriously. That’s why I’m glad to see we’ve added Rob McKenna’s Twitter feed to the side bar. Sure he’s a Republican who presumably nobody writing on this blog will vote for, but it’s important to have his voice.

We can dramatically increase state spending on K-12 education by dramatically decreasing spending on teachers. It’s #McKennaMath

I endorse Michael Bumgardener for US Senate! Watch out, Miss. Cantwell!

I’ve always felt it inappropriate for elected officials to endorse in pres. primaries. Except for 2008, 2004, & 2000. That was different.

So welcome aboard Rob.

by Darryl, 03/29/2012, 7:01 PM

In 2005, Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA-8) was one of only 21 Republicans to vote against House Resolution 639 that, essentially, authorized drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). HR-639 passed the house only to be killed in the Senate (thanks to a big show of leadership by Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA)).

Reichert has gotten a lot of mileage out of these types of “courageous” votes against his own party…but he shouldn’t. After all, Reichert stupidly admitted that his voting record was built on a strategy of keeping himself and Republicans in power—even on this very ANWR vote:

Sometimes the leadership comes to me and says, “Dave, we want you to vote a certain way.’ Now, they know I can do that over here, that I have to do that over here. In other districts, that’s not a problem, but here I have to be able to be very flexible in where I place my votes. Because the big picture here is, keep this seat, keep the majority, keep the country moving forward with Republican ideals…. Not the vote I place on ANWAR that you may not agree with, or the vote that I place on protecting salmon.”

With redistricting, Reichert finds himself moving from a very competitive district to a safe district. So today, when the House Republicans took a vote on the Ryan budget—you know, the one that would dismantle Medicare and replace it with a coupon system–how did Reichert vote?

He voted in favor of it (via Publicola):

Perhaps it’s because he’s in a safer Republican district now thanks to redistricting (and the only person running against him has raised just $12,000), but US Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA, 8 ), who has broken with his party on some high-profile and highly politicized votes in the past, stuck with his party today. (In the past, Reichert voted against his party to override President Bush’s veto of a children’s health care bill, voted for the employee non-discrimination act, i.e., for gay rights, voted with President Obama and the Democrats to extend emergency unemployment benefits, and, most dramatically, voted for the cap and trade bill.

Today, the liberated Congressman from the redrawn 8th (no more rich Microsoft liberals coming after him), voted for the controversial budget pushed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) in a party-line 228-191 vote.

Last year, Reichert skipped this vote…not out of political strategy, but because his mother had just died after an 18-month bout with pancreatic cancer (and, no doubt, Medicare prevented another bankruptcy). His office suggests he would have voted for it with the caveat that:

I’ve heard from my constituents and share their concerns about reductions in Pell Grants for low-income students, oil drilling expansion in our wilderness, and how entitlement reform could affect seniors and those approaching retirement.

Today he really did vote for a extremist right-wing bill. Sure…this version is a bit less extreme than the previous version, but it is still extreme. Yes, this one lets Senior’s use their coupons to purchase their way into a Medicare-like system. (This particular modification came about with the assistance of Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR).) It’s still extreme.

The bottom line is that the bill gives tax breaks to the wealthy at the same time raising health care costs for Seniors by thousands of dollars a year. And it does lots of other bad things, like repealing key parts of “Obamacare” and cutting Pell Grants.

If this bill were to become law millions of Americans would be affected by loss of insurance, increased health care costs, uncertainty and bankruptcy.

As Publicola suggests, Riechert is free now—free from having to take strategic votes that appease his constituents against his conscience.

Reichert still represents the OLD 8th Congressional District. What his vote today did was tell many of his constituents (the soon-to-be ex-constituents from the liberal parts of the old 8th) to fuck-off. And why shouldn’t he? Yeah…as he said last year, he’s heard from them, he knows their concerns. But they no longer hold anything over him, so screw ‘em.

by Darryl, 03/29/2012, 1:50 PM

Via Human Rights Campaign:

You’re not gonna use the pink ball. We’re not gonna let you do that. Not on camera. Friends don’t let friends use pink balls.

I’m pretty sure Rick prefers blue balls….

by Carl, 03/29/2012, 8:01 AM
by Carl, 03/28/2012, 9:56 PM

I’ve been reluctant to write the following piece. I mean, what about the white guy’s experience isn’t the most useful frame for the Trayvon Martin case. And unlike the founder of this blog, I try to keep my personal life personal; the most I usually write about myself is I took my bike somewhere. Still, the discussion of the stand your ground laws make me think of the time my housemate was killed, and I wonder what might have happened if we’d had stand your ground laws here in Washington like those in Florida.

Basically, the story is this: After college, I was underemployed and bumming around suburbia. Eventually, I moved into a house with several other people. The house was advertised in the local paper and I didn’t know any of the people before I moved in. It was cheap while I got myself onto a better situation.

It was a large house and people moved in and out all the time. One couple moved in and was constantly late on payments and was constantly getting into arguments with the landlord.

One weekend the landlord shot him and then claimed self defense. The forensic evidence didn’t back up his claims, and eventually he plead down and will be in prison for a long time, but I wonder if it would have been easier for him to concoct a story if we had those sorts of laws, and if it would have been a tougher case for prosecutors.

by Darryl, 03/28/2012, 4:20 PM

No surprise, really:

While he is yet to campaign in Wisconsin, Mitt Romney worked the state’s Republican voters from Dallas on Wednesday, holding a “telephone town hall” in which he embraced Gov. Scott Walker’s labor policies, endorsed U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan’s House budget….

Got that?

  1. Romney endorses Walker’s anti-labor policies
  2. Romney endorses Ryan’s budget which will end the current Medicare program and replace it with “coupon care”

The problem for Romney is that these two positions taken together pretty much make him unelectable in a general election.

Romney is counting on being able to “hit the reset button”—start over in his political positioning—after winning the nomination.

Will it work in 2012? Can a campaign really erase history when access to video, audio, and print media has become so democratized? Or will truckloads of money succeed in buying a big case of collective amnesia?

by Carl, 03/28/2012, 7:49 AM

I’m thinking of doing another round of candidate questions like I did for Seattle City Council last year. Since unlike City Council, most of these races are partisan, and I have no qualms about being a Democrat, I’ll have to start asking questions sooner, so they cover the primary. I was thinking the open seats in Seattle and the the executive offices with more than one Democrat running.

Like last time, it would be the same set of questions emailed to all of the candidates, so no when-you-were-mayor questions to Nickles, for example. And of course, they may or may not answer them. But I’d be willing to ask different things of different legislative districts. So my question: is this something you’d like to see. And if so, are there any questions you’d like asked, or positions other than those that you’d like me to ask questions to?

by Darryl, 03/27/2012, 5:22 PM

DLBottleMercifully, there is no new episode of the Primary Reality Show this evening. But a certain case being argued before the Supreme Court will be to talk of the tavern.

So please join us tonight for an evening of jurisprudence under the influence at the Seattle Chapter of Drinking liberally. We meet every Tuesday at the Montlake Ale House, 2307 24th Avenue E. We’ll begin at our usual starting time of 8:00pm, but some folks will show up even earlier for dinner.








Can’t make it to Seattle? There are DLs meeting all around Washington state, including in the Tri-Cities and Bellingham tonight, Burien on Wednesday night, as well as Yakima and South Bellevue next Monday.

With 233 chapters of Living Liberally, including twelve in Washington state and six more in Oregon, chances are excellent there’s one near you.

by Carl, 03/27/2012, 7:58 AM
by Carl, 03/26/2012, 7:18 PM

I know it’s super provincial, but I don’t care: I love it when Seattle and Washington State get mentioned in the New York Times, especially for good things.

Nationwide, women’s groups point out the glaring gender disparity in public life, noting that there are only 6 female governors and 17 female senators. Across the country, women make up 23.6 percent of state legislatures, according to Off the Sidelines, a project started last year by Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand of New York. But in Washington State, women’s serving in public office has been as consistent as the rain.

“Every once in a while a note or a letter will mention it,” Ms. Gregoire said. “But mostly, it’s taken for granted.”

Courtney Gregoire, her daughter, would relay differences between Washington State and Washington, D.C., where she worked as the director of the National Export Initiative at the Commerce Department. She found herself biting her tongue when men mentioned her age (she is 32), and she started wearing pantsuits to appear older. Once, after being the lone woman in a meeting of 25, she called her mother.

The governor replied, “Welcome to how it was for us.”

There’s still a lot of work for equal representation here in Washington. A lot of women are retiring from the legislature this year. I mentioned a while ago that we might not have any women elected executive officers come November. I don’t think the Democratic party has done a particularly good job in recent years of recruiting women.

Also, the Norm Dicks quote (if it was in context) makes me glad he’s retiring.

“I think women tend to advocate for women, and I think to myself, ‘They ought to mention men, too,’ ” he said. “When I’m running, I’m not just talking about men, I’m talking about men, women and children. I think women in politics have to be a little careful not to act as if they’re just representing women.”

Ms. Cantwell, Ms. Gregoire and Ms. Murray have campaigned together, he said, and Ms. Murray in particular has focused on recruiting women to run for public office.

“All of that is great but I feel like, ‘Can’t they find a good man to run sometimes?’ ” Mr. Dicks said.

If only men would run for office sometimes.

by Carl, 03/26/2012, 8:01 AM

- Yesterday was the anniversary of the Triangle fire. If you haven’t seen it, I’d also recommend the American Experience on the topic.

- God, covering a Congressional debate should be rip roaring fun and instead it’s B-O-R-I-N-G. Imagine at a labor debate, labor questions being asked!

- Over on the TeeVee, Fox news reported the story and invited people to comment on the network’s blog. The result was a whole lot of ugly.

- Breitbrats is my new favorite word.

- The outer reaches of plot twists.

by Lee, 03/25/2012, 12:00 PM

Last week’s contest was won by Ludicrus Maximus. It was in the Magnolia neighborhood of Seattle.

This week’s contest is related to a news item from March, good luck!

by Goldy, 03/25/2012, 7:00 AM

Exodus 21:12
Death is the punishment for murder.

Exodus 21:22-25
Suppose a pregnant woman suffers a miscarriage as the result of an injury caused by someone who is fighting. If she isn’t badly hurt, the one who injured her must pay whatever fine her husband demands and the judges approve. But if she is seriously injured, the payment will be life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, cut for cut, and bruise for bruise.

Discuss.

by Darryl, 03/24/2012, 5:55 PM

The polls close in a few minutes in Lousiana, and if the pre-election polling hold, Rick Santorum should win easily.

Tonight’s win is important for Santorum, because there is mostly bad news for him in the near future primary Schedule. A week from Tuesday will be a triple header of D.C, Maryland, and Wisconsin. I doubt Santorum can win any of these, unless Mitt’s Etch-a-sketch wound turns into full-blown political septicemia. And after that, we have a April 24 mini-Super Tuesday, with Connecticut, Delaware, New York, Rhode Island, and Pennsylvania. As it stands now, Romney should take all but Santorum’s home state of Pennsylvania.

I’ll probably get dragged away from the computer for various thing, but have at it in the comment threads.

5:59 pm (PDT): There are 20 delegates up for grab in LA (46 total). They are’t very important for Santorum who probably cannot win on delegates anyway. He needs a outright slaughter with hopes that it will catalyze a big momentum change in his favor.

6:03: Results can be found here and here.

6:12: Here is a livestream from NBC. From what I can tell, both NBC and CNN have called it for Santorum.

6:30: Barack Obama seem to be taking the Democratic primary in Louisiana with 69.3% of the vote (0.4% reporting).

7:50: With 83.1% of precincts reporting, here is what we have:

  • Santorum, 49.7%
  • Romney, 25.9%
  • Gingrich, 16.1%
  • Paul, 6.1%

Santorum would get a “bragging rights” boost by getting over 50% and/or doubling Romney’s votes—perhaps the former will happen.

by Darryl, 03/23/2012, 11:52 PM

Thom: Paul Ryan’s budget—most extreme corporate welfare.

Mark Fiore: iWhine.

Young Turks: Man sues Secret Service over Cheney “assault”.

White House: We the People — Your voice in our government.

Thom with more Good, Bad, and Very, Very Ugly.

Etch-a-Sketching:

President Obama nominates Dr. Jim Yong Kim for World Bank President.

Thom with even more Good, Bad, and Very, Very Ugly.

Greenman: Michael Mann’s hockey stick under oath.

Jon on Cable News.

Ann Telnaes: The Going-Nowhere strategy in Afghanistan.

The Republican Primary Jousting Contest:

Thom: Westboro Baptist Church’s Rush advertisement.

Health Reform in Action: One mother’s story:

Susie Sampson’s Tea Party Report: Porn-con.

Ann Telnaes: Second anniversary of the Health Care law.

Young Turks: Five worst things about the G.O.P. Ryan budget.

Sam Seder: “Katherine Harris” talks Occupy, Joe the Plumber’s campaign & more!

ONN: Joad Cressbeckler denies he incited mob to drag Congressman through briar patch.

Newsy: Congress hires their relatives.

Thom: Why is Tennessee teaching creationism?

Greenman: The search forLord Monckton.

More Skirmishes in the Republican War on Women™:

Health care reform across the country.

Alyona: Worst Proposed Internet laws of 2012.

Thom: The Good, the Bad, and the Very, Very Ugly.

Young Turks: Ryan’s budget, Zimmerman defenders and other topics.

White House: West Wing Week.

Death by Hoodie:

Ed: The return of Coupon Care.

Conversations with Valerie Plame and Joseph Wilson:

Maddow: Obama nominates true humanitarian for World Bank.

Jimmy Kimmel with some unnecessary censorship.

Last week’s Friday Night Multimedia Extravaganza can be found here.

by Darryl, 03/23/2012, 5:02 PM
Obama Santorum
99.7% probability of winning 0.3% probability of winning
Mean of 329 electoral votes Mean of 209 electoral votes

There have been 17 new polls released since my last analysis of the state head-to-head polls with President Barack Obama against Rick Santorum:

start end sample % % %
st poll date date size MOE O S diff
AZ Rasmussen 13-Mar 13-Mar 500 4.5 44 45 S+1
CT Quinnipiac 14-Mar 19-Mar 1622 2.4 55 35 O+20
FL Rasmussen 13-Mar 13-Mar 500 4.5 45 43 O+2
ME PPP 02-Mar 04-Mar 1256 2.8 58 35 O+23
MA PPP 16-Mar 18-Mar 936 3.2 61 29 O+32
MO Rasmussen 14-Mar 15-Mar 500 4.5 42 51 S+9
NE Rasmussen 05-Mar 05-Mar 500 4.5 37 49 S+12
NH ARG 15-Mar 18-Mar 557 4.2 48 37 O+11
NJ Fairleigh Dickinson U 05-Mar 11-Mar 800 3.5 54 33 O+21
NM Rasmussen 14-Feb 14-Feb 500 4.5 55 37 O+18
NY Siena 26-Feb 29-Feb 808 3.4 64 30 O+34
NC PPP 08-Mar 11-Mar 804 3.5 49 44 O+5
OR SurveyUSA 14-Mar 19-Mar 1615 2.5 49.3 39.5 O+9.8
PA PPP 08-Mar 12-Mar 564 4.1 48 46 O+2
PA Quinnipiac 07-Mar 12-Mar 1256 2.8 45 44 O+1
VA PPP 20-Mar 20-Mar 500 4.5 53 39 O+14
VA Quinnipiac 13-Mar 18-Mar 1034 3.1 49 40 O+9

The most interesting result is that Obama leads in both Pennsylvania polls—that is, in Santorum’s home state. Obama also has a small lead in Florida.

The previous analysis showed President Barack Obama leading Santorum by a mean of 338 to 200 electoral votes, and a 100% probability of winning an election held then.

Today’s Monte Carlo analysis employing 100,000 simulated elections, gives Obama 99,695 wins to Santorum 305 wins (including the 45 ties). Obama receives (on average) 329 to Santorum’s 209 electoral votes. In an election held now, Obama would be expected to win with a 99.7% probability, Santorum would win with a 0.3% probability of winning.

Remarkably, Santorum is doing better against Obama than Mitt Romney was two days ago, where Obama had a 100% probability of winning with a mean of 339 to Romney’s 199 electoral votes.

Electoral College Map

Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Lousiana Maine Maryland Massachusettes Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia D.C. Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

Electoral College Map

Georgia Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Delaware Connecticut Florida Mississippi Alabama Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia D.C. Washington West Virginia Wisconsin Wyoming

Here is the distribution of electoral votes [FAQ] from the simulations:
Read the rest of this entry »