Is Monday a blue day for you? It sure has been for me too many Mondays in my long, long decades of working for a living … Charlie Cook is prognosticating … My Computer Is Giving Me More Grey Hair … Poor Bill Clinton, Trying Mightily to Help the Sinking Dems, Can’t Even Attract A Crowd Anymore … A Canadian Miiltant Pleads Guilty in a Guantanamo Court … Mitch McConnell Has Shocked, I Tell You, SHOCKED the Political Sphere
I’d love to share with you what Charlie Cook’s latest article says, but the site keeps timing out, which means that probably every candidate, his/her staff and interested voters must be slamming the National Journal’s probably small server capabilities … if you succeed, please share. Charlie Cook is DA MAN, according to everybody. His findings and predictions are considered the most wise and smart in all the land. If only, now, I could read what he wrote. SCRATCH THAT — I got in:
It’s easy to look at what appears to be a gigantic Republican 2010 midterm election wave in the House and feel a little slack-jawed, but not so much surprised. There were plenty signs well over a year ago that Democrats were facing grave danger, but even when expecting an onslaught, one can still be shocked at its size and unrelenting force. It would be a surprise if this wave doesn’t match the 52-seat gain on Election Night in 1994, and it could be substantially more.
On the other hand, the Senate picture is incredibly confused. There is no clear narrative in the Senate, just bizarre ups and downs. Republicans could easily find themselves picking up as “few” as seven or as many as 10 seats. An 8-seat pickup seems about right, but that is not written with a great deal of confidence; there are way too many races separated by very few points. In some cases it is weak GOP candidates who are causing the red team to underperform, in others it is because some of these battles are in states less hospitable to the GOP. The strong Republican tailwind that exists in much of the country is not so strong in California and Washington, and there are higher and more durable Democratic bases in states like Illinois and Pennsylvania that keep Democrats in the hunt. It is not uncommon to hear strategists say that if the environment for House Republicans is so good (or so bad for House Democrats), then the GOP gains could get truly massive and those dynamics would likely tip the closest Senate races in the same direction. There is probably some merit to that argument. But it also seems that the problem-children candidates for Senate Republicans have been called out more than their House GOP counterparts. The GOP candidates with more exotic backgrounds and blemishes seem to be paying a greater price for it in the Senate than in the House. We will know for sure soon enough.
Republicans start off with leads in all of their own Senate seats; the only one with any real chance of turning over is Kentucky, but even there it seems the GOP has things reasonably under control. Incumbent Democrats Blanche Lincoln in Arkansas and Russell Feingold in Wisconsin are in distinctly uphill battles, as are Democrats in open seats in Indiana and North Dakota. That puts Republicans up by four seats going into more competitive contests. …
Well, there’s far too much to try to grab in a way that conveys all that Cook has to say. So you must go to the National Journal site, which now opens readily: “Dems’ House Losses Likely Enormous, but Senate Hard to Read.”
FYI: It took me an hour and 40 minutes to boot up my computer so that I could get this far in the Open Thread for tonight. I am saving it as I make every addition. If it stops abruptly at some point, that only means that I have had to reboot and haven’t been able to boot up again.
This just makes me SICK. Sick to my stomach for all the U.S. troops wounded and killed in Afghanistan. What an unholy mess that awful, awful country is. From the New York Times, “Afghan Leader Admits His Office Gets Cash From Iran“:
President Hamid Karzai acknowledged Monday that he regularly receives bags of cash from the Iranian government containing millions of dollars, saying he uses the off-the-books fund to pay expenses incurred in the course of doing his job.
Mr. Karzai made his remarks during a rambling, sometimes incoherent appearance at a news conference during which he accused the United States of funding the “killing” of Afghans by paying thousands of gunmen at private security contractors to guard buildings and convoys here. It was the latest outburst in a bitter dispute with the United States and its NATO allies that has taken on an increasingly anti-Western tone. The Iranian payments are intended to drive a wedge between Mr. Karzai and his American and NATO benefactors, Afghan officials have said. …
Oh great, just great. Karzai is off his meds. What folly.
Poor Bill. I admire his dogged efforts for the Democratic party, although they don’t deserve him, not with all his talents and his brains and his incredible wife who SHOULD be our president, not that professorial, indecisive, ignorant Obama … but I do feel sad for him that this happened to him. I KNOW that you all probably feel gleeful. I blame what happened to Bill on the cataclysmically bad presidency of Barack Obama and the Dems in Congress. From the Detroit Free Press about the Michigan gubernatorial race:
While the crowd hoisted signs that stated “Virg Surge,” the turnout at the rally was anemic. More than 500 people came to the rally, but the gym at Renaissance High School was only about one-third full, even though Clinton used to command full houses wherever he went, especially in Detroit.
Politician after politician exhorted the crowd to not let the polls keep them from voting on Nov. 2.
“They think that if they tell you often enough that you’re not doing well that you won’t go to the polls,” U.S. Rep. John Conyers said. “But we’re not buying that malarkey. If Detroit turns out as it has in the past, we win.”
Other statewide candidates to speak were Bernero’s running mate Brenda Lawrence; David Leyton, for attorney general; Jocelyn Benson for secretary of state; and Alton Davis and Denise Langford Morris for Michigan Supreme Court. …
Oh god. I’ve been to rallies like that. With politician after politician speaking. I don’t do well at such rallies. I get bored — very quickly — and restless. My back hurts too much to stand, and I just want to leave. All I want is the main attraction, in this case Bill Clinton, and the rest of them, well I just wish they’d shut the hell up.
Well, the Republican candidate, Rick Snyder has a 20-point lead over Virg Bernero, reports the Detroit News. Too much for any politician, at all, to make up at this stage, less than two weeks before the big day.
I sure haven’t heard much on TV news about this Michigan race.
Interestingly, the race for retiring Rep. Bart Stupak’s seat is very close (42-40%): “Battle for Stupak’s seat is a nail biter.”
Oh Canada. They are such a sweet people and far too tolerant for their own safety, and ours. Check this out: “Canadian militant pleads guilty at Guantanamo tribunal,” via the BBC:
Canadian Omar Khadr, the youngest detainee at Guantanamo Bay, has pleaded guilty to all five terror charges against him at a war crimes tribunal.
He has reached a plea agreement with US military authorities at Guantanamo.
Khadr is accused of throwing a grenade that killed a US soldier during a raid on an al-Qaeda compound in Afghanistan.
The 24-year-old, who had been facing a possible life sentence if convicted, was wounded and captured in Afghanistan in 2002 when he was 15.
Khadr was charged at his war crimes tribunal with murder in violation of the laws of war, conspiracy, providing material assistance to a terrorist organisation and espionage.
The defendant also admitted planting improvised explosive devices and receiving weapons training from al-Qaeda.
Details of the plea deal have not yet been disclosed. …
Human rights activists have been all atwitter over the fact that this detainee committed his crimes when he was a mere teenager. Well, that doesn’t bother me one bit. Teenagers, as any automobile driver knows, are among the most dangerous people on earth. They don’t stop and think, they are too easily distracted, they haven’t formed a moral conscience.
But this young man was well on his way to becoming a hardcore extremist adult and had he not been captured, he would have kept committing one horrific crime after another. He is highly unlikely to improve with age. It’s too late for him. He’s a goner. There’s no chance in hell he’ll grow a conscience when he hits 21. On to the next case.
Oh, Mitch! Even Joe Scarborough is SHOCKED, I tell you shocked, at what you told an interviewer. And you know how Joe loves to remind everyone, at least every 10 minutes, that he is a hard-core conservative, but you’ve even shocked, I tell you shocked, Joe! Here’s the New York magazine version of the hot story, titled “Republicans Unaware of Any Pressing Issues That Need Solving“:
With one week left until Election Day probably ushers in Republican control of the House and closely divided Senate, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has seemingly handed the Democrats a perfect talking point to hammer them with in the home stretch. In an interview with the National Journal, McConnell tells Major Garrett, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.” The single most important thing we want to achieve? Not fixing the economy? Not lowering the deficit? Not addressing immigration reform? Or a million other things? With President Obama already portraying the GOP in his stump speeches as more concerned with political victories than governing and solving problems, this is a godsend.
As you can tell from the way that paragraph is written, liberals everywhere — and even Joe, who’s a conservative, you know — are shocked, I tell you shocked that Mitch McConnell dared to speak the unadulterated truth about what he wants most in the next two years.
Mitch, it’s alright. We agree with you. We’re not too high-brow to admit that we too want Obama gone, gone, gone in 2012.
I guess the rule you broke, Mitch, is that you’re not supposed to say such things out loud. You and Juan Williams. The two of you have just got to learn. Never say out loud a single thing that might somehow be construed as wrong-headed.
And, now, it’s your turn, dear readers … speak! And here you CAN say those things that you aren’t supposed to say out loud. Well, as long as you are not haughty or antagonistic towards your fellow readers. We frown on impolite responses to others’ comments. There’s always a way to speak respectfully to each other. Right?