Category Archives: Texas

To the Victor Goes the Spoils?

The Austin-American Statesman had an article up on Sunday about redistricting, especially in Texas. Is it fair? Should we keep with the old adage “to the victor goes the spoils” or work towards a solution where citizens are aptly represented based on demographics?

Let’s look at both ideas:

(1) To the victor goes the spoils — the party in the majority is in the majority because they won, therefore, they should have control over drawing the maps and setting the line for representational districts

(2) Fairness — should our elected officials, regardless of party, focus more of drawing lines that create districts more resembling how populations in a certain state are placed, focusing more on demographics and less on political party

First off, Texas gives the party controlling the State House full control over drawing the maps. Keep in mind they have to account for populations increases or decreases (adding or taking away districts), where the population is growing or shrinking, and how the population is changing. If the legislative body cannot come to an agreement on maps, it falls to a Redistricting Board composed of five elected officials (Lt. Gov, Comptroller, Land Commissioner, Attorney General, and Speaker of the State House). Generally in Texas, all or most of these offices are going to be filled by one party, usually the party also in power in the State House.

My issue with this, is the party in power is only going to draw the lines that, at a minimum, reflect population changes. Their goals are twofold: (1) Protect the incumbents of their own party; and (2) Create more districts that lean towards their party. What ends up happening is the party out of power can challenge the maps. Already, as a Southern state, Texas is required to pre-clear all maps with the U.S. Justice Department (which, in and of itself, is often quite political); in this instance, now the Courts become involved.

Redistricting is a dirty, dirty part of politics. Which is why it needs to be taken out of the hands of elected officials. If the voters can elect their own commission, fully unable of holding any other state job, you might see maps that more accurately reflect demographic and population changes. For instance, break Texas into an odd number of districts and voters elect 1 redistricting commissioner from each district to draw the maps for their regions. Let someone from Houston draw the Houston map, same with Dallas, San Antonio, west Texas, south Texas, etc. These people have one job, they do it once, and they can’t be re-elected. Simple as that.

Let’s be smart about this. Stop politicizing everything.

The Convention, Day 1

Will update with videos tomorrow.

  • Future First Lady Ann Romney
  • OK Governor Mary Fallin
  • WI Governor Scott Walker
  • NH Senator Kelly Ayotte
  • Former AL Congressman Artur Davis (D)
  • Former PA Senator Rick Santorum
  • OH Governor John Kasich
  • NJ Governor Chris Christie (keynote)
  • SC Governor Nikki Haley
  • Mayor and Utah Congressional Nominee Mia Love
  • TX Senate Nominee Ted Cruz

**********

Day 2 is shaping up to to be GOOD:

  • PR Governor Luis Fortuño
  • Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
  • NM Governor Susana Martinez
  • Vice Presidential Nominee Paul Ryan

Akin for Control of the Senate

So, maybe the news isn’t all bad for Republican control of the Senate? Let’s go straight to predictions and explanations!

  • Arizona: No change from last week. MODERATE GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • California: No change from last week. I’m excited to see Emken go on CNN Monday morning. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Connecticut: This one has moved into a tossup. A new poll had McMahon up 49-46 and Connecticut looks a lot less friendly to Obama. Could a Republican upset happen here? Until I see another poll tell me otherwise, I say yes. TOSSUP/GOP PICKUP
  • Delaware: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Florida: No change. I still think the way Florida goes in November decides the winner between Nelson and Mack. TOSSUP/GOP PICKUP
  • Hawaii: No change yet. Hirono and Lingle are going to debate 8 times between now and November. Lots of room for change. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Indiana: Still not a lot of polling, so no change. WEAK GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Maine:No change. Still not a lot of polling and King has still not declared a caucus yet. MODERATE DEM LEAN/DEM PICKUP
  • Maryland: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Massachusetts: A PPP poll had Brown up 5 points yesterday. Looking like Brown’s race to lose.  TOSSUP/HOLD
  • Michigan: Two new polls have  given Hoekstra a lead and another Stabenow in the low single-digits. Romney’s coattails could make this an upset. TOSSUP/HOLD
  • Minnesota: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Mississippi: Incumbent: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Missouri: Call it a tossup now. Actually, as long as Akin is the nominee, McCaskill will win. Weak Dem lean with the chance to jump back to GOP with a new nominee. WEAK DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Montana: Montana is looking RED as RED can be this year. Moving this to GOP lean. WEAK GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Nebraska: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Nevada: No change. MODERATE GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • New Jersey: No change. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • New Mexico: No change yet. TOSSUP/HOLD
  • New York: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • North Dakota: No change. MODERATE GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Ohio: No change. WEAK DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Pennsylvania: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Rhode Island: No change. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Tennessee: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Texas: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Utah: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Vermont: No change. STRONG DEM (SOCIALIST) LEAN/HOLD
  • Virginia: Virginia is looking like a lean blue state in November, so I’m moving this one down to a Dem hold. TOSSUP/HOLD
  • Washington: No change. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • West Virginia: No change.  STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Wisconsin: Thompson looks to be getting stronger and Wisconsin is looking like a Romney state. Moving this up a little. MODERATE GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Wyoming: No change. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD

Last week I had it at 52-47-1 (GOP/Dem/Independent King); this week we have it at: 52-47-1. Haha. Missouri goes blue, Connecticut goes red. Total wash.

The Morning Dump, August 23rd

So I’ve spent all morning thinking it was the 22nd. TGIF, tomorrow…TO THE DUMP! (Abbreviated today)

World News

  • Rumors of war within Los Zetas. Man, that shouldn’t make Mexico any less violent, corrupt, or prone to mass murders that spill over into the American Southwest…

U.S. News

Texas News

Akin Watch: Day 3

  • Rasmussen teased a poll showing Claire McCaskill up 10 points on Akin. Private sources have said he’d drop out if he’s down 5+ points…

 

 

The Problem With Politics

The problem with politics is plain and simple: too few people have all the power.

In the case I’m talking now, in the Texas Democratic Primary on May 29th, Lloyd Wayne Oliver defeated party favorite Zack Ferrttita for the right to be the Democratic nominee for Harris County District Attorney. And not by a squeaker, it was a couple percentage points of a win.

Fast forward nearly three months later. Former Harris County Democratic Party (HCDP) chair Gerald Birnberg alleges Mr. Oliver “endorsed and supported” current District Attorney Patricia Lykos (R) in her bid to be renominated (which she lost, by a significant margin), based on statements he made following the primary.

In his statement responding to the complaint, Mr. Oliver stated that he would not have endorsed Ms. Lykos because she had lost and was no longer a candidate. The statements were made beginning the day after the primary was over in an attempt to woo some of her supporters. Also in the statement, Mr. Oliver believed that the Texas Democratic Party Rules (TDPR) do not explicitly apply to elected candidates and the attempt to remove him from the ballot would not stand. In conjunction, a representative from the Texas Secretary of State’s Office informed Mr. Oliver that such a thing would not be possible. Believing he had covered the ground, Mr. Oliver sent the statement to Chairman of the HCDP Lane Lewis.

Today, on August 22nd, Mr. Oliver received Mr. Lewis’ answer: his statement did not adequately defend the charges and he would not be removed from the ballot and the decision would be appealed to the TDP Chairman. In addition, for the first time, Mr. Lewis explained that the HCDP had decided to leave vacant the ballot line for Harris County District Attorney. Regardless of the TDP Chairman’s decision, HCDP was not going to run a candidate in November.

This is a clear violation of election laws and a violation of the people of Harris County’s civil rights. The HCDP is attempting to remove a candidate from the nomination of office because their candidate didn’t win. If this was possible, it would happen all the time. There is no vehicle for removing a candidate from elected nomination, barring not meeting age or residency requirements or dying. Election attorneys and judges are salivating at the chance to win this slam-dunk of a case.

Local news and national media have gotten a whiff of this story. The shit is about to hit the fan. The HCDP and the TDP have effectively given this election to Mr. Oliver. Voters love an underdog, especially now that local and national media are portraying him as a victim.

A victim of party bosses, personal vendettas, and he is the defender of 30,000 citizen’s civil rights. And more. By not putting up a candidate for the highest partisan office in the county on the ballot in 2012, the citizens are being deprived of being able to cast a choice and make their voice heard.

Stand for the right kinds of politics. Help Lloyd make his voice heard.

The Morning Dump, August 20th

Monday already? This can’t keep happening, the weekends aren’t long enough. I call on both Governor Romney and President Obama to commit to making the weekend two days longer. That will get someone my vote. As long as you don’t change voting days to weekends, of course.

To the Dump!

World News

  • 11-year-old Pakistani girl charged with blasphemy. I mean, sometimes, seriously? She was burning pages of the Quran mixed in with other papers she was using for cooking fuel. She has Down’s Syndrome. So I’m sure the Pakistani government will stone her for this and then parade her body around the mountains. Poor ass country, supply your population with cooking fuel, you bastards.
  • Chinese “Court” suspends death sentence of China’s “Jackie Kennedy.” Gu Kailai is the wife of the head of the Communist Party in China and was convicted of murdering a British businessman. Just because she’s the wife of the Communist chief doesn’t make her Jackie. She said “I think this verdict is fair. It fully reflects the court’s respect for law, reality and especially human life.” Who has said that ever in China without disappearing?

U.S. News

Texas News

  • Texas Attorney General Greg Abbot is set to be the point-man on the Texas Voter ID Laws and the Section 5 challenge. For those who don’t know, Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) declares areas of the country with historical voting discrimination must clear anything from voting laws to election dates to Congressional maps with the U.S. Department of Justice. Section 5 primarily focuses on the South (from 50 years ago) and fails to include places known for voter fraud (Chicago, Minnesota, Philly). The Section 5 challenge could be a big boost for Abbot’s gubernatorial ambitions in 2014.
  • For one year, the Texas DMV will accept matricula cards. Matricula cards are identification cards issued by foreign consulates, in this case, Mexico. Texas residents with matricula cards can use them to register or transfer vehicle titles, but they cannot be used for obtaining a driver’s license. The vote was 6-1 in favor of the one-year exemption, with the nay vote coming from Galveston’s Cheryl Johnson. Johnson, who agrees that the matricula is difficult to verify, said she voted against the rule change because she didn’t want to wait a year to ban the matricula as a form of identification.

Irony of the Day

Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod: “Bullshit notion” we ran a positive campaign in 2008. Not what we were told by the media…

Rick Perry Will Get Stood Up at Prom This Year

 

Governor Perry, your time is up.

 

You are the state’s longest serving Governor. You ran for President and failed miserably. You utterly destroyed the career of our most effective advocate for Texas, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

You may pick up your prize at 1246 TAMU, Texas A&M University College Station, TX 77643. Because come 2015, the only thing you have going for you is the presidency of your alma mater (p.s., I wouldn’t stick that on my resume).

Slicky Ricky is so desperate for a date nowadays he ginned up this little number: Texans First. A “philanthropic angel investor group” (say what?) focusing on good governance, civic participation, and “keeping elected officials accountable.” What does Ricky have to do with his? Simple: he’s lost his street cred. He let a no one (read: Debra Medina) run to the right of him in the 2010 primary. He ran for President and failed miserably and lost to a guy who is the national equivalent of Kay Bailey, but a man and Mormon. His chosen boy, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, lost to someone who people didn’t even know until a few months ago. Does Perry have any sway in the state he built and staffed and appointed with cronies and drinking buddies?

I say no. Texans First is Perry’s pathetically lame attempt to court the new GOP freshmen going to Austin for the 2013 legislative session. Here is the letter sent to those freshmen by Texans (Perry) First:

Congratulations on winning your race. You earned it. Now comes the hard part–delivering on the promises you made, so Texas avoids becoming a high-tax, over-regulated, lawsuit riddled disaster like California.

Benjamin Franklin cautioned, “We most all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. That’s why those of us at Texas First, a group of liberty minded entrepreneurs who are dedicated to the same principles you are, want to invite you to an intimate gathering of legislative policy leaders, policy experts, and successful entrepreneurs. If you will come, we promise you a day of deep principled discussion and serious commitments you won’t soon forget.

This is Slick Rick trying to fix his reputation and image. The 2013 session won’t be a nice one, having to deal with a budget shortfall, education funding, women’s reproductive rights, possibly raising taxes and fees to cover shortfalls, and potentially, squaring off with a President Mitt Romney he talked a lot of bullshit about. He knows how vulnerable he is on the right. His presidential run, combined with the TTC and HPV, make him ripe for a primary challenge. He won’t stop mentioning 2016, because he knows his future in Texas politics is o-v-e-r. The lower-rungs are nipping at his heels to move up: AG Greg Abbot, Comptroller Susan Combs, LG Dewhurst, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples. Everyone is ready to move up a rung, with Patterson already declaring his intentions to run for LG, Dew or no Dew.

2014 won’t be kind to Rick Perry. Texans are fed up (hehe, ironic). Greg Abbot will run and win the GOP primary. Dew won’t win (and probably won’t run in) the primary. Combs, Staples, Patterson, Abbot are all moving up. Debra Medina wants to run for Comptroller. The guard is changing due to a bunch of Texans ready to march to the right of Perry. Good for Texas? No. Good for getting rid of Perry? Yes.

Keep an eye on the 2013 session and going into the 2014 cycle. The GOP in Washington and Austin aren’t listening to Perry anymore. It’s Cruz time: full speed ahead!

Morning Dump, August 17th

Drain the last drop from your second cup of coffee, leave the newspaper on the desk, and sit on down for today’s Morning Dump.

WORLD NEWS

  • German Foreign Ministers Support Euro. This should be a surprise to…no one. No other European Union economy has benefited from the Euro has much as Germany, whose become (once again) the economic powerhouse of Europe…which of course, creates fear in the mind of everyone on the continent (including Germany) of an all-powerful Germany.  But some are criticizing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s moves towards greater European consolidation as to the Euro because, well, Germany is the only one on the block with a crap ton of money, and the hooligans want a cut (*cough* Greece *cough*)
  • Rebels Plant Seeds for Syria’s Future. With President Assad’s regime crumbling, the rebels in the North are moving Syria towards a free and democratic future. Syria has, in essence, become a two-state country: Assad’s Syria in the South and Free Syria in the North. Kudos to the Northern Rebels. Keep it going, kids!

U.S. NEWS

  • Touchdown Dances Always Result in A Flag. Former Special Ops officers, including the Navy SEALs, are out with an ad against President Obama for “spiking the football” when it comes to the killing of Osama bin Laden and the national security leaks. I leave it to Benjamin Smith, former U.S. SEAL. Bazinga.

Mr. President, you did not kill Osama bin Laden. America did,” he says. “We have become a political weapon. We are not.”

  • Um… I wish I had words for this, but I don’t. Touré (no last name? or no first name?) on MSNBC (Mostly Stupid, Non-Believable Crap) said Mitt Romney is engaging in the “n*ggerization” of President Obama. Parent company NBC suspends Touré in 5…4…3…2…1…wait no? Shocking.

“That really bothered me,” he said. “You notice he says ‘anger’ twice. He’s really trying to use racial coding and access some really deep stereotypes about the angry black man. This is part of the playbook against Obama. The otherization, he’s not like us. I know it’s a heavy thing to say. I don’t say it lightly. But this is ni–erization. You are not one of us, and that you are like the scary black man who we’ve been trained to fear.”

  • Harry Reid: The anonymous source is me? According to Tax Attorney Alvin Brown, Section 6103(f) of the Internal Revenue Code allows members of the Senate or House to request tax return information, as well as the President. Does Harry Reid have them in his possession? No clue. But, it is “unlawful” to make a disclosure of any private information in a tax return under section 7213 of the IRS Code. Clusterfudge, that’s for sure.

TEXAS NEWS

  • Bullet proof? The Magic Bullet? Faster than speeding bullet? Former Harris County Judge Robert Eckel’s dreams of a bullet train in Texas are alive and well. Is it possible without public funding? Is this Perry’s Trans-Texas Corridor all over again? Personally, I would DIE to be able to get from Houston to Dallas in 90 minutes!

IRONY OF THE DAY: JUDICIAL DUR-ISM

  • This is now how you win a case on Voter ID. The lead plantiff in the suit to block the Voter ID bill in Pennsylvania went and got the ID she needs to be able to vote. Yeah, I’m sure the judges in this state are all laughing at this.

“Nothing has changed since Viviette Applewhite, 93, testified in July. The law stands. She still doesn’t have a driver’s license or Social Security card. The name on her birth certificate is still different from the name on her other documents – all of which, under the law, should have barred her from getting her photo ID.

But at precisely 1:16 p.m. Thursday, she got it anyway.

‘You just have to keep trying,’ said Applewhite, who uses an electric wheelchair. ‘Don’t give up.’

State officials called it an unplanned exercise in what they’ve been saying for weeks: Clerks behind counters at Pennsylvania Department of Transportation centers can take age and other factors into consideration when granting exceptions to the list of documents the law requires, licensing bureau director Janet Dolan said.”

SECOND IRONY OF THE DAY: WE ARE FAMILY?

Now back to your regularly scheduled work day. As if you are doing work, it’s Friday anyhow.

“The Separation of Church and Chicken”: Crying Fowl

This is a subject near and dear to my heart (and by near to my heart, I mean my stomach). I don’t think I need to recap the Chick-Fil-A controversy to anyone because Facebook did a good enough job on that…by definition, Facebook became the peanut gallery of public opinions by anyone and everyone (yay First Amendment rights!)

So earlier this week, my always-known-to-say-something-stupid Governor, Rick Perry (Idiot-Texas) felt the need for his opinion to be known. And what did he have to say?

“When conservatives are offended by a corporate policy, we simply choose not to give them our business,” explained Perry, according to the AP. He continued that when it comes to liberals, they “try to keep everyone else from giving them business.”

Let’s go over that one, Governor Goodhair. As I recall, the GLBT community and its allies merely engaged in a boycott. That involved them not buying the product (aka, not giving CFA their business). I fail to recall anything on the news regarding GLBT activists and allies blocking entrances to CFA restaurants or hijacking CFA trucks full of chicken patties (on a side note, if someone wanted to hijack one and leave it in front of my house, well, by all means, please do!). So Governor, in your famous words: “oops!”

Guess what I’ll be doing in 2014? Not giving Governor Perry my business, because I am offended by his everything. Mostly embarrassing my state by being Governor.

In your words: Adios mofo

A Poll of No Confidence

The only thing more split this year than Presidential Election polling is Senate polling. The House is almost assuredly going to stay Republican due to redistricting and a sizable majority. Will the Senate finally turn red after Republicans (read: Tea Party) blew it in 2010?

Let’s take a look:

  • Arizona: Sen. John Kyl is retiring after three terms and serving as Minority Whip this session. US Rep. Jeff Flake is taking on former Surgeon General Richard Carmona (who served under President George W. Bush). State demographics would tilt this Democrat due to the high Hispanic population, but Arizona also has a sizable Mormon population and low-Hispanic turnout. MODERATE GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • California: Three term Senator Dianne Feinstein is up this year and will face Autism advocate and former IBM Cost Analyst Elizabeth Emken. The latest field poll shows Feinstein polling way below Obama and only up 12% on Emken. But California is California and even in a wave election, the GOP couldn’t touch Boxer last cycle. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Connecticut: Independent (and perpetual thorn in the side of both parties) Joe Lieberman is retiring. 2010 GOP nominee Linda McMahon of WWE fame and Dem. Rep. Chris Murphy will face off after defeating opposition by 75% of the vote. Despite spending ten million dollars in 2010, McMahon couldn’t even take the open seat. I don’t think she has a chance this year barring a Romney blowout. MODERATE DEM LEAN/DEM PICKUP
  • Delaware: Two-term Sen. Tom Carper is up against…who? STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Florida: Two-term Sen. Bill Nelson faces an uphill battle with strong headwinds in a presidential year. He will face U.S. Rep. Connie Mack IV. A strong candidate in Mack and a tough year for Nelson makes this a top 5 race.  Whichever presidential candidate wins FL, so goes the Senate race. TOSSUP/GOP PICKUP
  • Hawaii: An open seat, Democratic U.S. Rep Maze Hirono will face former Republican Gov. Linda Lingle. Lingle is a strong candidate, but having to go against President Obama at the top of the ticket in his home state. It’ll take a massive effort but it is not in her favor. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Indiana: Now an open race, Richard Murdock knocked off longtime incumbent Richard Lugar on the GOP side. For the Dems, U.S. Rep Joe Donnelly will face him. Obama won’t win Indiana again, but something about this race bothers me. WEAK GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Maine: Sen. Olympia Snowe surprised the political world with her retirement. A shoo-in for reelection, it now falls to a threeway race: State Sen. Cynthia Dill for the Dems, State Sec. of State Charles Summers for the GOP, and former Gov. Angus King as an Independent. King has not announced who he will caucus with, but the Democratic Senate Committee is pretty sure he’ll caucus with the Dems and has given no backing to Dill. It’s still Maine….MODERATE DEM LEAN/DEM PICKUP
  • Maryland: First-term Sen. Ben Cardin faces former USSS Agent Daniel Bongino. Never heard of him and I doubt voters have either. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Massachusetts: THE race of the year. Incumbent Sen. Scott Brown faces the Harvard-educated, liberal activist Elizabeth Warren. A lot of money has been raised and the polls are razor thin. Tie goes to the incumbent. TOSSUP/HOLD
  • Michigan: Two-term incumbent Debbie Stabenow faces former U.S. Rep Pete Hoesktra, famous for his oddly racist ad against China and Senator “Spend-it-Now” (lol). His only chance is a Romney blowout. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Minnesota: Incumbent Amy Klobuchar faces Ron Paul-ite Kurt Bills, State Rep. and an economics teacher. Sen. Klobuchar has kept her nose down and her name out of the news, so she’s good for a second term. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Mississippi: Incumbent Roger Wicker will face…someone named Al Gore, Jr. (Don’t ask me how he’s a “Jr,” he looks about 112 and…no relation to another Gore). Okay then…STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Missouri: One-term incumbent Claire McCaskill will face U.S. Congress Todd Akin, who won over Palin-endorsed State Treasure Sarah Steelman and “endorsed by everyone else” John Brunner. A lot of trouble for Sen McCaskill, despite weaker than expected opposition. MODERATE GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Montana: Incumbent Jon Tester will face Rep. U.S. Rep Danny Rehberg. This is a surprisingly close race in a state as red as Montana, but in the end, I think Rehberg rides Romney’s coattails to Washington. TOSSUP/GOP PICKUP
  • Nebraska: Sen. Ben Nelson retired (because he had no chance of winning). Former Senator Bob Kerrey flew back from New York to run in his place. Deb Fischer came from third to first behind Sarah Palin’s help and will fly to Washington D.C. as the next Senator. STRONG GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Nevada: Sen. Dean Heller will face ethics-plagued U.S. Rep. Shelly Berkley. Despite the state’s Obama lean, Berkley is in serious trouble over the ethics complaint. Heller wins due to incumbency. MODERATE GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • New Jersey: Incumbent Bob Menendez will face State Sen. Joseph Kyrillos. Menendez is not terribly popular but should win, barring a miracle Romney pickup of NJ behind Chris Christie’s help. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • New Mexico: Open race time! Another top 5 tossup. U.S. Rep. Martin Heinrich for the Dems and former U.S. Rep Heather Wilson for the GOP. Polls show neither candidate with a significant lead outside the MoE. Hold for now. TOSSUP/HOLD
  • New York: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will go up against Attorney Wendy Long. Gillibrand has New York and Schumer behind her. Romp. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • North Dakota: Sen. Kent Conradt is retiring, leading to another open-race tossup. For the GOP, U.S. Rep Rick Berg; for the Dems, former State AG Heidi Heitkamp. She’s a good candidate, but ND is red, red, red. MODERATE GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Ohio: Incumbent Dem. Sen Sherrod Brown will face State Treasurer Josh Mandel. Mandel, who looks like he just graduated HS, is a money-raising machine, but for the life of me, I cannot figure out how Brown is the favorite. Yet, he is, barring an Romney romp of 5 or more points. WEAK DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Pennsylvania: Incumbent Sen. Bob Casey, Jr. is not his father, but Keystone residents think he is. Either way, businessman Tom Smith is a no one. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Rhode Island: Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (sweet name) will face…someone. Whatever. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Tennessee: Incumbent Sen. Bob Corker is facing…someone. Whatever. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Texas: This was the premier matchup on the GOP side after incumbent Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison decided not to run again. Former State Solicitor General Ted Cruz defeated Lt. Governor David Dewhurst in a run-off. Texas…red…STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Utah: Sen. Orrin Hatch managed to be renominated (by a lot) and will face…someone. This is the reddest state in the country. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD
  • Vermont: Incumbent Bernie Sanders (self described democratic socialist) will face…who cares. STRONG DEM (SOCIALIST) LEAN/HOLD
  • Virginia: The race of all races this year. Incumbent Jim Webb retired, setting up a fight between former Gov. and DNC Chair Tim Kaine and former US Senator George Allen who wants his seat back. Kaine runs a point or so better than Obama, but like Florida, he who wins the state wins the seat. Give me Allen right now. TOSSUP/GOP PICKUP
  • Washington: Incumbent Maria Cantwell will face State Rep and veteran Michael Baumgartner. Washington was fool’s gold for the GOP in 2010 and even though Cantwell is not very popular, she will win. MODERATE DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • West Virginia: 2010 rematch, incumbent Joe Manchin against businessman John Raese. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. Manchin will win, but he’ll be a Republican by 2013/14. Book it. STRONG DEM LEAN/HOLD
  • Wisconsin: Another open-race tossup party! Former Gov and HHS Tommy Thompson, who was a reformer but being a reformer was cool, will face U.S. Rep Tammy Baldwin. Wisconsin has been the epicenter of politics in 2012 (recall…Rep. Paul Ryan…battleground) and Thompson is way popular. WEAK GOP LEAN/GOP PICKUP
  • Wyoming: Did you know John Barrasso is the Senator from Wyoming? He will still be the Senator from Wyoming in 2013. STRONG GOP LEAN/HOLD

So there you have it. By my estimate, the next Senate will be 53-47 GOP control. The hapless KY Senator Mitch McConnell will be Senator Majority Leader. Woohoo? For no one.

%d bloggers like this: