Archive for October, 2008

Who’s Going to Get a “Tax Cut” Again?

October 31, 2008

Bill Richardson is now talking about the bar for the “rich” being set at $120,000, not the $250,000 of yestermonth.  As Ed puts it,

Obama started at $250K, dropped to $200K, Joe Biden adjusted it to $150K earlier this week, and now it’s dropped another 20% since then.

CBS News has analyzed Obama’s budget priorities, and it finds that, based on his current “tax cut” plans, he can’t pay for all he’s said he’s going to pay for.  How’s he going to make up the difference?

Democrats are still talking about taxing your 401(k) plans and forcing you to “invest” 5% of your income in government-run accounts. Barney Frank’s talking about raising taxes and cutting defense allocations.

Are you worried about what’s going to happen to your tax bill?  Don’t be selfish.

You don’t have to give the left total controlIt’s not too late to get involved.


The New Openness

October 31, 2008

Obama pushes three McCain-endorsing newspapers off the campaign plane.  Via Drudge:

The Obama campaign has decided to heave out three newspapers from its plane for the final days of its blitz across battleground states -- and all three endorsed Sen. John McCain for president!

The NY POST, WASHINGTON TIMES and DALLAS MORNING NEWS have all been told to move out by Sunday to make room for network bigwigs...

Despite pleas from top editors of the three newspapers that have covered the campaign for months at extraordinary cost, the Obama campaign says their reporters -- and possibly others -- will have to vacate their coveted seats so more power players can document the final days of Sen. Barack Obama's historic campaign to become the first black American president.

Some told the DRUDGE REPORT that the reporters are being ousted to bring on documentary film-makers to record the final days; others expect to see on board more sympathetic members of the media, including the NY TIMES' Maureen Dowd, who once complained that she was barred from McCain's Straight Talk Express airplane.

After a week of quiet but desperate behind-the-scenes negotiations, the reporters of the three papers heard last night that they were definitely off for the final swing. They are already planning how to cover the final days by flying commercial or driving from event to event.

Newspapers, you’re on notice: be careful about criticizing Hope and Change.  Who knows what might happen.

Do you really want these folks to be unaccountable?

Louisiana Senate: Really a Pick-up?

October 31, 2008

Okay, one poll released earlier this week showed Landrieu with a substantial lead, but John Kennedy‘s campaign is circulating another poll—one that shows him behind by a point.  The Politico has the details on the poll and analysis.

The OnMessage Inc. poll, conducted 10/27-29 for Kennedy’s campaign, surveyed 900 likely voters for a margin of error of +/- 3.3%. Landrieu and Kennedy were tested.

General Election Matchup

The numbers are a big improvement for Kennedy over recent polls that show Landrieu with a much bigger lead, including a Southeastern Louisiana University poll earlier this week that showed the Democrat leading by 19 points.

Kennedy’s campaign credits a new NRSC advertisement that paints Landrieu as a rubber stamp for Barack Obama (The two senators vote together 81% of the time, according to the ad), as well as popular Governor Bobby Jindal’s involvement in the race on Kennedy’s behalf. Here’s the NRSC’s new ad, which says she’s “not only corrupt, Landrieu is liberal”

That’s winnable.  Mary Landrieu has an “F” grade from the Gun Owners of America; Kennedy gets an “A” from both the NRA and GOA. Residents of the Bayou State who want to stop the Democrats from overriding every Republican filibuter, here’s your chance to help.

Phonebanking From Home

October 31, 2008

Gabriel Malor has a great post up about phonebanking from home.  It’s easy, doesn’t require much of a commitment, and can be effective.  I’ll quote generously from the post:

There’s still time to help elect John McCain and Sarah Palin. This past weekend, I made phone calls through the volunteer online phone bank. I admit, I was uncomfortable cold-calling complete strangers on a Sunday afternoon. But it was ultimately a rewarding experience. There were people who still claimed to be undecided. There were also several Republicans who sounded like they needed a little encouragement to go to the polls. I like to think I made a difference.

In the middle of the afternoon, I blegged for advice because I was having a hard time talking to answering machines. As I expected, the wisdom of crowds made things much easier.

Please consider making phone calls on behalf of McCain/Palin 2008 in the next few days. The process is very easy. Sign up at the top link above (I’m fairly certain you don’t even have to use a real email addy if you don’t want to get GOP emails) and within minutes the website will provide you with names, locations, phone numbers and scripts. (I think the hours are from 9am to 9pm Eastern.)

You generally get to choose the state you’d like to make calls to, so if you have free long distance like me, you can help out with some of the battleground states. My suggestions are Colorado, Ohio, Virginia, and Pennsylvania.

I’m tucking some advice from last weekend under the fold. Read it first and then get calling. I challenge each of you to make at least twenty phone calls. It won’t take that long and it may make a difference on Tuesday. I’m going to be calling again this weekend too.

Later: I want to emphasize that you can make calls from the comfort of your own home. This is so easy to do, there’s just no excuse for not helping.

Get the names and numbers from the McCain/Palin website. Call in between loads of laundry. Call while you’re waiting for dinner to be done. Call after you put the tot down for her afternoon nap. Do what I did and call while you’re blogging. I know you guys spend countless hours just sitting in front of your computer. You could use a little of that time to call voters.

On scripts, courtesy of Kat-Mo:

Very simple. Keep the message simple.”Hi, I’m _________, a volunteer from McCain for President campaign. We’re interested in talking to you about your vote and the future of our nation.

[simplify talking points]

John McCain is a proven leader.
He has the experience to keep our nation safe.
He knows that keeping taxes low helps stimulate the economy.
He wants you to keep your own money, not use government to “spread the wealth around”.
Please help put John McCain in the White House on November 4th.
Vote John McCain.
Thank you.”

Don’t worry about the self-important, low-level RNC dweeb insisting that the script is sacred. It’s stilted and unwieldy. Nobody talks like the provided script and people react less warmly if they can hear you reading. Memorize, simplify, don’t read it; just talk.

Tell them your first name and say you are a volunteer.

The Ground Game

October 30, 2008

We’re getting near the time when on-the-ground effort is going to make a big difference.  And I’m not just talking on the presidential level—I’m talking on every level, from city council to state senate to Congress to president.

Even if you don’t live in a “swing” state, there could be a lot of close Congressional races.  Even Illinois has some House races where some effort could tip the scales in favor of the GOP.  Your district seems solid one way or another—what about the district next door?  Maybe your state isn’t a swing state, but the one a few miles to east could be.

The polls are narrowing.  Obama’s got a killer organization out there, and he’s got loads of money.  It’s gonna take a lot of effort to counteract that.  Even though the Democrat-controlled Congress is enjoying levels of approval in the teens, there are a lot of races out there where Republicans are in trouble.

If you want to stop “major redistributive change,” now’s the time to act.

You want an end to the Barney Frank style of oversight, casting aspersions of racism and prejudice rather than trying to find real solutions to real problems?  Now’s your chance.

You want to fight back against the Obama “truth squads” and state officials snooping into the records of critics of Hope and Change?  Get out there and convince people to vote with you.

So you want to get involved?  There are countless ways you can help out.  Check out the Action Center at McCain’s website.  Or the Take Action page at the GOP’s site.  You can even phonebank from home! It’s that easy!

Contact the campaigns of your local House or Senate candidate.  Most webpages have a place where you can volunteer.  Congress is really really really important. And there are some races out there that could be decided by a very small margin. There are swing House races all over the country.  I’ve got a list of some swing Senate races here.

Ace is doing some great work coordinating GOTV networking here.  And he has some other good GOTV ideas.

If you can go out and pound on some doors for a campaign, great.  If you can help put up some signs for a campaign, great.  If you can drive campaign workers from one place to the next, great.  If you can photocopy things at a local campaign office, great.  If you can phonebank for a few hours, great.  If you can convince your Aunt Milly to pull the lever for the GOP, great.

Don’t back down.  Don’t give up.  Don’t lose hope.  Concentrate concentrate concentrate.  A few hours now could make a huge difference for the politics of the next few years.  So go outside, enjoy that beautiful fall weather.  Stay on that phone, make just one more call at the phonebank.  These races will be won step-by-step, vote-by-vote.

In the comments below, feel free to post what GOTV opportunities you know about or reports of your experiences canvassing/phonebanking/etc.  Also, you Myspacers and Facebookies out there, consider trying to build some enthusiasm among your online friends.  Send a GOTV message around (use mine if you want!); check out the online communities of  your different candidates.


October 30, 2008

A new poll shows a falling Democratic advantage in the generic Congressional ballot question:

Republicans have cut the Democratic advantage in the generic ballot question in half over the past week, according to a new GW-Battleground poll.

Democrats now lead by four points, their slimmest lead in more than three years. A week ago, according to the George Washington University poll, their advantage was eight points. Meantime, the congressional approval rating remained low, at 19 percent, up two points from the previous poll.

Of course, as Ed reminds us, that’s not a victory yet.  Keep moving!

Protecting the Second

October 30, 2008

Dave Kopel has an extensive examination of the viewpoints on the Second Amendment for the candidates for Senate races and select House races.  If gun rights are a big issue for you, definitely check out the list.  I’ll excerpt a few here (the grades are from the NRA and the Gun Owner’s of America):

McClintock has been an outstanding leader on right to arms issues in California. His 2001 speech on the subject in a classic, displaying a deep understanding of the importance of firearms ownership to a free society.

House, 4th District: Republican Tom McClintock (A,A) vs. Democrat Charlie Brown (B-,NR).

Five of the 50 most-competitive House races this year are here. Four of them involve pro-gun Republican incumbents facing anti-gun Democrats. The one endangered Democrat, Tim Mahoney, gets mixed grades and faces a pro-gun challenger.

Senate: Republican Mitch McConnell (A,B) vs. Democrat Bruce Lunsford (?,NR).

House, 3rd District: Republican Anne Northup (A,A-) vs. Democrat John Yarmuth (F,F).

Republican John Kennedy (A,A) vs. Democrat Mary Landrieu (C,F).

The Minnesota Senate vote could determine the outcome of many future filibusters.

Senate: Republican Norm Coleman (A,B) vs. Democrat Al Franken (F,F).

House, 3rd District: Republican Erik Paulsen (A,A) vs. Democrat Ashwin Madia (D,NR).

House, 6th District: Republican Michele Bachmann(A,A-) vs. Democrat Elwyn Tinklenberg (AQ,C).

New Hampshire
Senate: Republican John Sununu (A,A) vs. Democrat Jeanne Shaheen (F,F).

House, 1st District: Republican Jeb Bradley (A,A) vs. Democrat Carol Shea-Porter (F,C-).
Governor: Republican Joe Kenney (A) vs. Democrat John Lynch (C) .

New Mexico
Senate: Republican Steve Pearce (A,A) vs. Democrat Tom Udall (C-,F).

North Carolina
In the open seat race for governor, the race is close between Republican Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory (B-) and Democratic Lt. Gov.
Beverly Perdue (A). Running for president in 2000, Republican Senator Elizabeth Dole (A,A) took criticized concealed handgun carry. But in the Senate, her voting record has been good. In a very tight contest, her opponent is Democrat State Sen. Kay Hagan (F,F). 8th District, south-central N.C.: Republican Rep. Robin Hayes (A,A) vs. Democratic schoolteacher Larry Kissell (AQ,B-).

Democratic Governor Christine Gregoire (C-) has a rematch with Dino Rossi (A), from whom she may have stolen the 2004 election. 8 District, eastern King and Pierce Counties: Republican Rep. Dave Reichert (B+,A-) vs. Democrat Darcy Burner (F,NR).

These statistics could certainly be helpful in places like North Carolina, New Hampshire, and Kentucky.

Polls 10/30

October 30, 2008

The races are narrowing a bit in New Hampshire.  Over the past few days according to one poll, John Sununu has narrowed Jean Shaheen’s lead from 14 to 8 points.  Some polls show Shaheen with a lead of about 6.  That can be made up.  Sununu could strengthen his support with Republicans a little, and he really needs to work on independents: emphasize oversight and things like the Washington Post‘s almost-endorsement of him.  The race is also tightening for NH-01, as former Rep. Jeb Bradley trailed the incumbent D by only 2 points—42-44.  There’s been a big swing in Bradley’s favor over the past few days.  This race is winnable.

In Minnesota, Norm Coleman now has a lead over Franken, 43-39 (there’s a third-party candidate running relatively strong, so there aren’t as many undecided voters as that poll may make it seem), according to Rasmussen: it’s been a six-point swing since last week.  Coleman may have the momentum now.  He needs to keep pressing.

Begich is up  8 over Ted Stevens in Alaska.

A new North Carolina poll shows Dole trailing by four; some have her trailing by less.  This could be tight.

More on Ohio’s New Politics

October 30, 2008

Gotta love those Obama supporters’ belief in the protection of personal privacy:

A state agency has revealed that its checks of computer systems for potential information on “Joe the Plumber” were more extensive than it first acknowledged.

Helen Jones-Kelley, director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services [and maxed-out donor to Barack Obama], disclosed today that computer inquiries on Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher were not restricted to a child-support system.

The agency also checked Wurzelbacher in its computer systems to determine whether he was receiving welfare assistance or owed unemployment compensation taxes, she wrote.

Jones-Kelley made the revelations in a letter to Ohio Senate President Bill M. Harris, R-Ashland, who demanded answers on why state officials checked out Wurzelbacher.

Harris called the multiple records checks “questionable” and said he awaits more answers. “It’s kind of like Big Brother is looking in your pocket,” he said.

If state employees run checks on every person listed in newspaper stories as buying a business, “it must take a lot of people a lot of time to run these checks,” he said. “Where do you draw the line?”

Ace has more.

Getting on the Bandwagon

October 30, 2008

Even the Washington Post isn’t too keen on a total-control radical Democrat Congress:

But we don’t believe either party has a monopoly on policy wisdom. We liked Mr. Bush’s insistence on accountability in education, tempered by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy’s reminder that you couldn’t fix urban schools without some money. We don’t support the Democrats’ plan to allow unionization without secret ballots, but we agree with them that National Labor Relations Board rules have tipped too far toward management. And so on. We like to think, in other words, that a process in which both parties play a role can sometimes lead to better outcomes and not always to dead ends.

That’s harder to imagine, though, as each party’s moderate wing shrinks. A Democratic sweep might bring to Washington some relatively centrist freshmen who would provide a check on the most liberal wing of the party. But it might claim as victims some of the few remaining Republican moderates, such as Sen. Gordon Smith of Oregon and Rep. Christopher Shays of Connecticut, and some of the real workhorses who are more interested in legislating than grandstanding — the capable New Hampshire senator John E. Sununu, for example. The defeat of such politicians would be a loss for the country, not just for their party.

Let’s ensure that that loss doesn’t happen.