Chicago-style elections open thread

Another Tuesday, another chance to raise a glass and have a laugh over the G.O.P. primary melee.

There have been four Republican primary polls taken in Illinois this year, and they were all taken in March. Here’s what they show:

  • Chicago Tribune: 7-mar to 9-mar: Romney 35%, Santorum 31% (+4 Romeny)
  • FOX Chicago News 14-mar: Romney 37%, Santorum 31% (+6 Romeny)
  • Rasmussen 15-mar: Romney 41%, Santorum 32% (+9 Romeny)
  • PPP 14-mar to 18-mar: Romney 41%, Santorum 31% (+15 Romney)

It is possible that the trend of Romney pulling ahead of Santorum is simple polling variability. Or, Santorum might be tanking, big time, from (1) alienating women through his War on Contraception™ and (2) alienating men through his War on Porn™, or both.

War is hell.

Anyway, this is an open thread, so have fun…but, you know, keep it Santorum-approved.

5:40: The polls in Illinois are closed and 15% of the vote is already counted (according to Google after typing “Illinois Primary” into its general search). So far, no signs of Romeny is not getting his ass, um, kicked by Santorum:

  • Romney: 54.7%
  • Santorum: 27.4%
  • Paul: 10.4%
  • Gingrich: 6.7%

6:06: As Michael points out in the comment thread…that was quick! The election is called for Romney. Since Illinois does proportional allocation, the interesting question is how badly will Santorum lose. (I was in transit when the election was called, so sorry about the late update.)

6:12: It isn’t impossible for Romney to win the 1,144 delegates before the August G.O.P. convention. It would require a change in momentum for Mitt:

Even after polls close on the last contest, held on June 26 in Romney-friendly Utah, according to an analysis by ABC News the former Massachusetts governor may still be short of 1,144 delegates — the magic number a candidate will need to secure the nomination.

Based on 2008 presidential-primary results, conventional-wisdom expectations, statewide 2010 primary results by county, and polls, a conservative estimate suggests Romney will end this primary season just shy of the 1,144 delegates he’ll need to win.

…or some help from G.O.P. superdelegates:

The Republican Party, however, has its own version of Democratic superdelegates: members of the GOP who will attend the Republican National Convention in Tampa this August as voting delegates, not having been elected or appointed, but included by virtue of their party roles. In nearly every state and territory, the GOP chairman, RNC committeeman, and RNC committeewoman hold this status.

In all, 123 of these superdelegates will attend the Tampa convention — enough to push Romney over the edge if a majority of them support him. Romney already enjoys the backing of 33 of these automatic RNC delegates, included in the 521 delegates ABC News estimates he has won.

Remember during the 2008 Democratic convention how the Republicans criticized the hell out of the Democratic nominating process because of the superdelegates?

Yeah…typical fucking G.O.P. hypocrisy!

6:37: Mmmmm…Mexican pasta! I enjoyed it without reservation….I must hate America.

6:40: According to my sources (namely, Google), just over half the votes are counted:

  • Romney: 49.3%
  • Santorum: 33.2%
  • Paul: 9.1%
  • Gingrich: 7.5%

It looks like Santorum is going to lose by double digits. Even so, how pathetic is Gingrich!

6:45: From the Twitterosphere:

Greg Mitchell ‏ @GregMitch
Santo more or less saying: I carried the nutcase parts of the state. So that makes him President of Nutmerica.

6:53: Santorum said something like we have a “government that is trying to dictate our lives.” A President Santorum would shrink that down to a “government that dictates our genitals.”

6:56: NBC estimates, “Romney netting 40-43 of the 54 delegates; 11-14 to Santorum.”

7:11: Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. is the apparent Dem. primary winner in his district.

7:14: “That’s really funny,” Mr. Romney said, laughing as he zeroed in on tempting images of meatloaf cakes. “I’d love to get a picture of Ann’s meatloaf cakes.” Not. Santorum. Approved.


  1. 1

    Michael spews:

    Well, that was quick.

    Romney Wins Illinois GOP Presidential Primary
    SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (AP) — Mitt Romney has won the Illinois Republican presidential primary, besting rival Rick Santorum in the big-state contest. Exit poll results show Romney was preferred by Illinois primary-goers who said the economy was the top issue in the campaign. The former Massachusetts governor also was overwhelmingly favored by those who said an ability to defeat President Barack Obama was the quality they most wanted in a GOP nominee.

    I wonder how many dead people voted for Romney?

  2. 2

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    “I wonder how many dead people voted for Romney?”

    Probably not too many. Dead people in Illinois tend to vote for the Dems. My grandpa was from Chicago and said it’s a very corrupt place when it comes to voting, as is the entire state of Illinois.

    I’ll just write-in Ron and call it a day in Novmeber. Having Obama for another 4 years won’t be so bad. The House and Senate will very likely be controlled by the Republicans, so nothing too bad is going to happen.

  3. 3

    Michael spews:

    “I wonder how many dead people voted for Romney?”

    That was a joke. Everybody knows that dead people only vote for Democrats!

  4. 4

    Siberian Dog spews:

    Dead people voting in Illinois was not the big news from today. It was the moronic response to Robert DeNiro’s joke about a white first lady that took over the “really important news” in the cycle. Pinhead Newt had to have his say, talking about it being inexcusable and totally unacceptable. WTF? Who the hell is Newt to be talking about ANYTHING someone else is saying being questionable? This is the same idiot who said that poor children should work as janitors in their gradeschools. He said he would go to the NAACP and tell them that Blacks should not accept food stamps. Fucking moron should just go back to his book tour and STFU.

  5. 5

    Michael spews:

    In other Chicago elections news: Go Tammy Duckworth!

    Backed by some of the most powerful figures in the state, Tammy Duckworth opened up a big early lead in Tuesday’s Democratic primary in a northwest suburban congressional district.

    With more than 40 percent of precincts reporting, Duckworth had 65 percent of the vote to rival Raja Krishnamoorthi’s 35 percent in the newly redrawn 8th Illinois Congressional District.

    Congressman Walsh’s time in The Peoples House will be short.

  6. 6

    Michael spews:

    I saw that and while I thought it wasn’t a funny joke, I didn’t think DeNiro had said anything shocking or distasteful.

  7. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @6 It shows DeNiro doesn’t have a good feel for either politics or public relations. No half-assed junior league pitcher would serve a meatball like that to the opposition.

  8. 8

    Michael spews:

    Romney 46.8%
    Santorum 35.0%
    Paul 9.3%
    Gingrich 7.9%

    Poor Newt. Is he really going to stay in this thing?

    It’s pretty clear that even if they do have a fight at the convention about who the nominee that Romney, with over a million more votes than Santorum, would win the fight.

  9. 9

    Pete spews:

    From 6:53: Never, ever put “Santorum,” “genitals,” and “shrink” in the same sentence.

  10. 11

    Michael spews:

    Speaking of Chicago….


    HOG Butcher for the World,
    Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
    Player with Railroads and the Nation’s Freight Handler;
    Stormy, husky, brawling,
    City of the Big Shoulders:

    They tell me you are wicked and I believe them, for I
    have seen your painted women under the gas lamps
    luring the farm boys.
    And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it
    is true I have seen the gunman kill and go free to
    kill again.
    And they tell me you are brutal and my reply is: On the
    faces of women and children I have seen the marks
    of wanton hunger.
    And having answered so I turn once more to those who
    sneer at this my city, and I give them back the sneer
    and say to them:
    Come and show me another city with lifted head singing
    so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning.
    Flinging magnetic curses amid the toil of piling job on
    job, here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the
    little soft cities;

    Fierce as a dog with tongue lapping for action, cunning
    as a savage pitted against the wilderness,
    Building, breaking, rebuilding,
    Under the smoke, dust all over his mouth, laughing with
    white teeth,
    Under the terrible burden of destiny laughing as a young
    man laughs,
    Laughing even as an ignorant fighter laughs who has
    never lost a battle,
    Bragging and laughing that under his wrist is the pulse.
    and under his ribs the heart of the people,
    Laughing the stormy, husky, brawling laughter of
    Youth, half-naked, sweating, proud to be Hog
    Butcher, Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat, Player with
    Railroads and Freight Handler to the Nation.

  11. 13

    Michael spews:

    Yeah, and I guess I clipped his name off when I copied and pasted. I didn’t mean to keep that a secret. I’m a huge Carl Sandburg fan.

  12. 14

    Liberal Scientist is a slut spews:

    Is this an open thread, or an Illinois election open thread?

    If the former, read this and weep. Fox News online comments about Treyvon Martin. Unbelievable racism.

    A few examples:

    What a shame—a tragedy, really— because the dead lil’ gangsta could’ve used “‘A-FIRM-TIV AK-SHUN” to go to kollige an play footballz and make lotsa cash munny!”

    Need that too….But Negr0s only have their welfare checks….and in any event can’t follow rules

    Them monkeys can jump!

    That is all it was — just another n i qq er. No loss

    They should have a hunting season in Florida for these drug crazed gang members.

    How long will it take to get all of those little blk curly nappys out of the White House bedding so that the next POTUS can sleep without that Creepy Crawly feeling .

    Note the ‘creative’ spelling of ‘niqqer’ for ‘nigger’ and ‘n e g r o’, and ‘cr!me’ in some of the others I didn’t list – they are conscious of having their comments searchable online, and are taking efforts to fly under the radar. This is conscious and deliberate, and vile. This is the Republican base.

    Remember – this is a comment thread from Fox, not some Tea Party backwater.

    Has it always been thus? I suppose so. Perhaps an uptick in virulence and volume now, as the nation becomes minority white country, predicted to be by 2042, or before.

    I despair for us sometimes.

  13. 15

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @14 Now you know why America needs a Republican Party — the GOP is an asylum for these freaks. We sure don’t want them in our party.

  14. 16

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    The GOP Freak Show

    Here are 5 bills introduced by Arizona GOP legislators:

    1) Mandatory termination of college professors who use profanity on or off campus.

    2) Prohibiting state colleges from accepting federal funds if they allow medical marijuana on campus.

    3) Requiring state colleges to allow guns on campus.

    4) Require all students, except athletes, to pay at least $2,000 of tuition from their own pockets instead of with money from scholarships, loans, or other student aid.

    5) Prohibit state colleges from firing professors because they hold conservative religious or political views.

  15. 18

    David C spews:

    Interesting that with the GOP Circus on tour, the CBS/NY Times has Obama at 41% approval. No poll has him over 50%. Shows he is extremely vulnerable and still beatable.
    The GOP is doing everything they can to hand Obama the election and he still can’t secure it.
    This could be an election where the theme is “throw the bums out!”..from top to bottom.
    Wouldn’t it be ironic if the R’s took the White House & Senate…and the D’s took back the House??
    Right now, it appears anything is possible.

  16. 19

    rhp6033 spews:

    From # 14:

    “Remember – this is a comment thread from Fox, not some Tea Party backwater.”

    Actually, Fox News IS a Tea Party backwater.

  17. 20

    rhp6033 spews:

    # 18: I don’t know what polls you are looking at. Early last week there was a poll showing the President at 41% favorable rating. But by the end of the week, there were a bunch of polls showing him at 50% and 51%. The conclusion among the experts was that the 41% was an outlier, a statistical anomoly.

    I havent’ seen national polling for this week yet, but I haven’t checked all the news yet this morning. I’m guessing all the pollsters were in Illinois and Lousiana around the end of the week. Maybe we will get new results later today or later this week.

  18. 21

    rhp6033 spews:

    Of course, for all the Republican talk about the President being so unpopular, Romney still can’t get the support of more than half of his own party.

    The remaining candidates have to time this just right. If they agree to drop out in return for giving their endorsement and delegates to Romney, and it puts Romney over the top, then they can extract the most value from their endorsement. They can demand a high position within the Romney administration -Secty of State, Treasury, or even the the vice-presidential nod. The longer the race is “in the wind”, the more valuable their endorsement. But if they wait just a bit too long, and another candidate endorses and puts Romney in the lead, the most they can hope for is some input in the platform committee – and we all know how much a party platform is worth.

  19. 24

    Michael spews:

    It’s the battle of the urbans against the exurbans and rurals for the Republican nomination.
    Romney’s City Vote Overwhelms Santorum

    Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney continued to win urban counties and, as a result, took the Illinois primary yesterday.

    The former Massachusetts governor won 47.2% of the vote in Illinois Tuesday. His closest rival, former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum, took 35.4 percent. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich won 8 percent and Rep. Ron Paul took 9.4 percent.

    Once again, however, Romney lost to Santorum in both rural and exurban counties. (Exurban counties are within metropolitan regions, but are largely rural in character.) And once again, Romney did worst in exurban counties.

  20. 25


    with a $16 TRILLION and growing National Debt.


    “two wars we didn’t pay for”
    “a prescription drug program for seniors…we didn’t pay for.”
    “tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 that were not paid for.”

    Oh there’s a little matter of an economic depression we’re all suffering through due to the right wing policies of both political parties the last 30+ years..

    Where’s the “wow” to any of that?

  21. 27

    rhp6033 spews:

    Continuation of # 21: So Romney’s strategy over the past month has to been to convince the other nominees that he is the inevitable front-runner. His hope is that this will encourage the other candidates to think that their window of opportunity is closing rapidly, and they had better get on the Romney band-wagon before it’s gone.

    I think that there is a children’s game similar to this, but I can’t recall what it is. The best example I can think of is a reverse-auction, where the price goes down until someone buys the item. Those who wait to long don’t get the item, no matter how much they were willing to pay.

    This also works with respect to donars. If they continue to back the opposition, their money will still be welcomed by Romney, but their influence won’t be as great as it would if they backed him before his nomination is secured.

    In related news, Jeb Bush just threw his lot in with Romney. That just goes to show how little religious denominations are playing in this race – the Catholic voters and influential Catholic Republicans are abandoning Gingrich and Santorum, fellow Catholics, and going for the Mormon candidate instead.

  22. 28

    rhp6033 spews:

    Since it’s an Open Thread:

    One aviation expert predicted earlier this week that oil prices at $108.00 per barrel were “artificially high”, and kept there by “political judgements”. He thinks over the long term they will settle back into the $40 per barrel range.

    I didn’t hear the speach, so I’m not sure how he came to that conclusion. I don’t think $108.00 per barrel of crude oil is that high, it’s certainly not high enough to support the current gasoline prices at $4.00 per gallon at the pump. It seems to me that the price of gasoline per gallon at the pump is what is unnaturally high, in part because oil refiners have taken refineries off the market, in part due to speculation, and in part (probably) for political purposes.

    But that wasn’t the real substance of the speech. The expert was arguing against the predictions by both Boeing and Airbus that airlines would be making a wild dash to purchase new, more fuel-efficient airplanes such as the 737MAX, A320NEO, and A350XWB, and potentially a new version of the 777. Implicit in that strategy was the assumption that many existing airplanes would become just so much scrap aluminum.

    The expert argued that this was unrealistic, because leased aircraft make up more than 1/3 of the worldwide aircraft inventory, and those planes aren’t going to just disappear. Instead, the lessors will bring down the cost of the equipment offered to carriers to the point where it offsets any fuel-cost advantage of the new aircraft.

    Also, he pointed out that oil prices at $40.00 per barrel would make it uneconomical to purchase marginally more efficient aircraft at significantly higher prices.

  23. 29

    ArtFart spews:

    @16/@22 I guess this means English departments would have to stop teaching anything about Kenneth Rexroth, to say nothing of Allen Ginsberg.

  24. 30

    ArtFart spews:

    Jack E. Leonard had a favorite one-liner: “I come from Chicago. I was born there before the cops became robbers.”

  25. 31

    ArtFart spews:

    Going forward from here, it’ll be interesting to see whether Romney’s rhetoric moves back toward the center (or more correctly, the center right) or if he’s allowed himself to become convinced the GOP will prevail presenting itself as the Party of The Crazies.

  26. 32

    Michael spews:

    Good point.

    By banning profanity on campus’s wouldn’t they be caving the the special interests of political correctness?

  27. 33

    rhp6033 spews:

    Oh, and the market for lawyers is collapsing,which has been reflected in a drop-off of applications to take the LSAT.

    For 2nd Year, a Sharp Drop in Law School Entrance Tests

    Of course, the headline has it wrong – the LSAT isn’t an entrance examination, any more than the SAT is a college entrance examination. It’s a test designed to predict performance in law school. Law schools take that score, combined with the GPA and a whole list of other factors (sometimes including family links to the school), and decides whether or not to make an offer of admision.

    But more to the point, the legal field has long been in a state of transition. Large firms used to at least hold out the hopes of a partnership offer after seven years of hard work. But the trend now is to have a firm with a small number of equity partners and a lot of contract attorneys, brought in to work a case or special project and then let go when that’s completed.

    It used to be true that the legal field was a way for smart people from a modest background to break through the glass ceiling into the ranks of the wealthy and influential. But now you have to already have the influence, social contacts, and wealth long before graduation to ever have a chance at becoming an equity partner.

  28. 34

    rhp6033 spews:

    Chicago’s political machine is legendary, but an awfully long time has past since the Daly era. Aside from local politics within Chicago’s wards, is there any real evidence to suggest that Chigago’s vote has been manipulated over the last decade or so?

    With the amount of visibility these days, it’s hard to conceive that anyone could get away with the type of ballot-stuffing or graveyard-voting which made Chicago politics so notorious. Note, for example, in the Wisconsin recall elections, how quickly questions were raised about one county’s results, and the detail of the media investigations which followed.

    Those seeking to throw elections these days have to bee much more sophisticated: voting machines without paper trails, de-registration campaigns (yes, you voted, but you will never know if we counted it or not), etc.

  29. 35

    rhp6033 spews:

    The GOP is looking at the polls, and what it sees isn’t pretty. Between Limbaugh and Santorum, women are being, well, “less than enthusiastic” about the Republican party right now. Who can blame them? What choices do they have?

    * A serial adulterer who traded in two older wives as soon as they seemed to be ill for younger mistresses;

    * a devout Catholic who believes no woman should have access to birth control;

    * a libertarian who hasn’t got a prayer of winning, and who’s views on health care and economics is something out of the 1800’s; and

    * a devout Muslim who believes birth control promotes illicit behavior and as an elder coerced single women to give up their children for adoption.

    With Rush Limbaugh being the ideological Ayatolah of the Republican Party, who derisively libels women who take birth control as “sluts” and “prostitutes”, what does the GOP offer women?

    Well, cue the spin team, which is already in play. to them, it’s not a policy problem, it’s a “perception” problem, which can be resolved by changing the “perception” of women voters. Sen. McCain is in Arizona promising that the governor would veto any anti-women legislation passed by the Tea-Party controlled state legislature. Romney’s wife is twisting the issues by insisting that what women want are jobs, not birth control (as if ignoring the subject makes it go away). Santorum’s wife is trying to re-assure Republican women that Santorum won’t actually act on his beliefs, so they should vote for him anyway.

    “War on Women” — GOP in strategic retreat?

    The Republicans believe that they can move from the most extreme right-wing blather to a more central-right rhetoric without any consequences. They are counting on voters who (a) have short attention spans, or (b) haven’t been paying attention at all. But in today’s era where everything is permanately recorded, I don’t think they are going to get away with it.

  30. 37

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @33 Despite changes in the economics of law practice, I still think it’s a good idea to have a horde of peasants armed with law degrees as well as pitchforks, to take on the entrenched interests.

  31. 38

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I’ve been a lawyer for nearly 40 years, and the legal market has been oversupplied with law graduates for at least that long, and probably much longer.

    I’m not saying a law degree is a bad thing. As one of my law professors put it, “Practicing law is a fine hobby — if you can afford it.”

    But in pure economic terms, I don’t think our economy can support 1 lawyer for every 300 people in our country, which is what we have. Unless you assume that 1-percenters can keep all those lawyers busy, at a ratio of three 1-percenters for each lawyer, because that’s how many 1-percenters there are to go around among all those lawyers.

    Why do we have so many lawyers? Because law schools are cash cows. They bring in almost as much money as a medical school, but have only one-fifth of the costs of a medical school. Therefore, every college wants want … because law schools are huge moneymakers for colleges.

    The colleges do throw a sop to their law students: They hire a staff person to run a job placement program. These programs don’t create legal jobs or expand opportunities for law graduates. They’re simply bulletin boards on which law firms can post job listings.

    Medical school graduates have a somewhat similar problem, although they haven’t been hit as hard as law school graduates yet, because they have a better union that has done a better job of putting up entry barriers to limit the number of doctors. But doctors eventually will suffer from the same inexorable reversion-to-the-mean mathematics that sooner or later hits every occupation or profession paying above-average incomes: People will pour into that occupation until there’s an oversupply of jobseekers, and then incomes in that occupation will revert to the mean.

  32. 40

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Afghanistan Shooter Involved In Stock Fraud

    “Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, the U.S. soldier accused of killing 16 civilians in Afghanistan, left for war without paying his part of a $1.5 million judgment for defrauding an elderly client in a stock scheme, and remains shielded from the obligation as long as he remains in the military, legal experts said.”

    The article says Bales spent his 5-year career as a “stockbroker” at shady “pump and dump” shops that repeatedly ran afoul of the law.

    Roger Rabbit Commentator: I wonder if Dino Rossi is his business idol? At least Rossi didn’t shoot helpless women and children; he only robbed them. (Maybe there’s something to be said for Republicans not serving in the military? Just wondering …)

  33. 41

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I’m proud of my military service. I think serving in Vietnam was an honorable thing to do. Don’t get me wrong, war sucks, and if I could create a world of no more wars, I would! But I had no say in whether the Vietnam War was fought. All I know is that I volunteered at a time when Uncle Sam was drafting fathers, and because I went, somewhere a dad didn’t get drafted and got to stay home with his kids. I’m proud I did that. It makes me a better rabbit than all those draft-dodging Republicans in Congress or that lying mayor in New Jersey who pretended to be a Vietnam Veteran when he wasn’t. I have no respect for poseurs like him.

  34. 42

    Tom Darien spews:

    41. You are a hero in your own mind.

    Your senility and dementia may be caused by war trauma and it shows.

    You want everyone to kiss your ass for volunteering? You had a choice.