My 2020 Election Postscript (Updates)

November 7, 2020

OK, as I type this, it’s all but done for Biden/Harris, now that they’re leading in PA and GA, thank God (and by the way, I was dismissive in the past of Stacey Abrams for being this almost ubiquitous presence on MSNBC about any center-left issue that existed without having won an election, even though by rights she should be Georgia governor now, but boy, was I wrong – it turned out she worked her ass off to GOTV for Biden/Harris and definitely should be rewarded in the new incoming administration – my apologies and congratulations to her for her efforts).

The White House was, of course, the big prize that we absolutely needed to win, though I’m sure there will be subsequent legal stuff for the foreseeable future (I remember how much the Repugs fought Al Franken getting seated in the U.S. Senate from Minnesota, and you can expect them to do that at a minimum for the White House). However, at this point, you would really have to wonder about any judge or politician doing anything whatsoever to reward a Trumpster, since, electorally, they’re “dead men walking,” and could only end up staining the reputation of anyone who could still help them at this point.

What does it tell you that it was so close? Well, for starters, it’s incredibly hard to knock off an incumbent politician unless they utterly self-destruct (which the Gropenfuhrer most certainly did, basically causing the worst health crisis this country has faced in over 100 years as well as an economy on the verge of collapse). There are many on my side who have claimed and will continue to claim that Biden was a little too chummy with Republicans. Well, that may be. But a win is a win is a win is a win is a win, and that’s what matters at the end of the day, not some damn Dem/liberal/progressive purity test.

I guess I need to remind our side of this again…in 1964, the Republican Party was flat on its back, having been decimated in a presidential and congressional elections. However, they incrementally worked their way back to power (partly by “working the refs” as always) to the point where they were positioned first in 1976 for their movement conservative guy (The Sainted Ronnie R), who actually showed up 4 years too early and caused the Republican split that led to Jimmy Carter winning. By 1980, though (with the internal fight going on between Carter and Ted Kennedy…I vaguely recall a white-haired guy named John Anderson too), they were poised to return to power, which they did with disastrous consequences. It took 16 years, but they pulled it off. And we’ll need to do something like that to accomplish the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, electoral and tax reform, common-sense gun laws, and on and on (though I realize we don’t have 16 years when it comes to the health of this planet).

The moral of the story is that you have no choice but to play the long game. Like many of you I’m sure, I saw people online like Peter Daou absolutely losing their minds, railing against “corporate Dems.” Yes, I most definitely don’t like them either. But to build a winning coalition (especially for our side), you have to bring a lot of folks to the table, including them. And if you don’t have the political inclination for the sort of “horse trading” and deal-making you need to engage in as a politician to pull off that feat or something like it, then why the hell are you bothering to run in the first place? That’s just the reality, and I don’t know what else to say about it.

Any by the way (speaking of politicians adept at “horse trading”), how about giving Nancy Pelosi a little credit for holding the U.S. House (though apparently Dems lost seats, which will, and should, prompt some self-reflection)? And unfortunately, it looks unlikely that Christina Finello will be going to D.C. as part of the majority, with the PA-01 contest very nearly settled in Brian Fitzpatrick’s favor. However, as far as I could see, Finello ran the best campaign I’ve seen a Dem run for that seat in a long time. I thought Steve Santarsiero acquitted himself admirably in 2016 – Scott Wallace has a great progressive lineage but not much else for my money two years ago, and Kathy Boockvar worked hard and ran well (I always felt the best Dem for that was Patrick Murphy, who managed to win twice), but I loved Finello’s combativeness and the fact that she NEVER let up on reminding everyone just how wedded to Trump Bri-Fi really is. Also, Finello expertly used social media to advance her campaign. The biggest factor going for Bri-Fi, though, is that he does have a bit of a record of some votes that are actually sane, though I believe his terrible votes far outweigh that. Also (and this is something else I’ve said before), never forget how Repug-friendly this district truly is. That sliver of Montco may be a little “swingy,” but Bucks County is red to its core. I honestly don’t know how you make enough of an inroads on that to effect a different electoral outcome, but we have a couple of years to go back to the drawing board and try to come up with a new strategy for next time (also, congratulations to Perry Warren, re-elected for another term in Harrisburg from PA-31).

And speaking of self-reflection on the U.S. House Dems, I thought this was an interesting thread on Twitter from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Yes, I realize the country overall doesn’t share the same demographic composition of her district (not yet, anyway), but I thought she made a lot of good points about the people who are really the core for a lot of the party (African Americans, poor working class…and that’s not a pejorative comment by the way…various other demographics including LGBTQ and non-whites) and how their issues need to be addressed. This was spurred a bit by recent comments here from “centrist” Dems like Conor Lamb and Abigail Spanberger, who all but blamed “the squad” for their harder re-election prospects and the House Dems losing seats. And in response, I would say that there needs to be give-and-take on both sides. Lamb, for example, who has championed fracking in PA, could say that we also need to watch out for children’s health issues that have been linked to fracking, and that affects Lamb’s district too (Will Bunch recently noted this on Twitter also along with AOC), and the NY-14 rep could say that, yeah, I support resolutions to local issues for my constituents, but these people also go out and work in districts that are more centrist than where they live, so issues related to their well-being impact there also (and stuff like the Green New Deal and Medicare for All, again, could be beneficial to the whole country if the party could finally get its messaging together on that – a big “if” I know, unfortunately).

Now to the Senate…

To say I’m relieved that Gary Peters won another term in Michigan is an understatement (though, in typical Trumpian fashion, Peters’ opponent John James is apparently refusing to concede). However, part of me seriously wants to email Peters and say, “Congratulations on your victory. Now, announce to the entire world that you’ll serve your term until 2026 and never seek re-election to the Senate again.

When you’ve been connected to this stuff for as long as I have (not that I’m a big deal, I hasten to emphasize), a lot of different candidates from all over the place are going to put the bite on you for money. And the Peters campaign was easily the worst at that (or best I guess, depending on how you look at it). I would get easily 3-4 emails every day (“Just got off the phone with my team,” “Outraised again,” “I was the only Democrat for the U.S. Senate outraised this cycle,” “No path to the Senate without Michigan”…true, I know, but DAMN, did it get tiresome).

So I thought, well, maybe I can find a somewhat current video from the campaign to include at this blog. Yeah, well, good luck with that. I was able to find a couple of clips from years ago, along with a testimonial from former President Obama…and that was it. Also (for some reason), Peters and James couldn’t work out some way for the two of them to debate, and all the while, I kept thinking to myself “This could be Claire McCaskill and Joe Donnelly all over again, BUT THIS IS FREAKING MICHIGAN!” And yes, I know the dynamic was also altered by all of the crazy militia garbage going on along with the DeVos family throwing around stupid money to try and get James elected. In a nutshell, I thought Peters’ social media presence (tying into the AOC post earlier) left much to be desired.

So I also thought, if I’m going to focus my contributions on one Senate race in particular, it had damn well better be this one. And after I made my donation, what was I rewarded with? A video of Peters riding a motorcycle.

Ummm…why the hell am I supposed to actually care about that (and as long as I’m on the subject of U.S. Senate Dems having to “get the memo,” someone had better let this guy know his time is about up also. The Repugs ran that stiff Bob Hugin in NJ against him last time, but they won’t make that mistake again.). As for Peters, though, he sure as hell ought to make campaign finance reform a big issue after a performance like this (which it should be for all Dems anyway). Just to show how out-of-hand the money situation has gotten, his office sent out a tweet yesterday saying “Let’s congratulate Gary Peters on his re-election – click here to make a contribution.” HE’S ALREADY FREAKING WON! WILL YOU STOP WITH THE PANHANDLING ALREADY??!!

Update 12/16/20: OK, fair is fair – kudos to Peters for going after that disgusting fraud and utterly repellent human being Ron Johnson here.

Also, it is beyond discouraging that, of all the U.S. Senate races where Dems challenged, so far, we have only ended up with 2 pickups (even though I know that, yes, it’s hard to knock off an incumbent as already stated). One pickup was Mark Kelly in Arizona, who had all kinds of built-in name recognition and was lucky enough to run against the weakest of all Republican Senate incumbents in Martha McSally (not trying to detract from Kelly’s campaign when I say that). The other pickup came in Colorado, where John Hickenlooper had even more built-in name recognition as former Governor, and was running against the second-weakest candidate in Cory Gardner (I was hoping that would work for Steve Bullock in Montana, but it didn’t of course). People like Cenk Uygur have been going nuts over the Dems not running enough progressives, like Daou, and that’s why they didn’t get pickups, which is partly true but also partly wrong. Hickenlooper is most definitely NOT progressive, but it would have been insanity to name another Dem to go against Gardner.

I know you have to put a bit an asterisk next to anyone running in the South (with all due respect to Southern Democrats, fighting a truly lonely and uphill fight, f*ck the South right in the ear – I’ve learned NEVER to trust them in elections, though that doesn’t mean we should throw in the towel either of course). What the hell else was Jaime Harrison supposed to do in South Carolina, for example? Also, this didn’t help Cal Cunningham either – dumb. And even someone as thoroughly corrupt as David Perdue in Georgia is going to a runoff with Jon Ossoff only because the libertarian candidate kept Perdue from 50 percent of the vote (last I saw, Perdue actually was leading Ossoff by about 100K votes, even though Ossoff totally owned Perdue in that last debate). And I have to admit that, deep down, even though I supported her in my way of course, I never took Amy McGrath seriously as a candidate. Yes, we know what Sen. Mr. Elaine Chao is, but he hasn’t lasted this long in his job by being a fool or somehow forgetting how to count. McGrath ended up spending her own stupid amount of money in this campaign and was still beaten by about 20 points. Even if she’d reached out to Charles Booker (who spent a fraction of that money in the Dem primary and very nearly beat her), could she have won working with Booker? Maybe not, but I don’t think Mitch McConnell would have cleaned her clock either.

As far as I’m concerned, there were at least a couple of winnable races out there that we could have captured with a little more imagination and better strategy (and no, I wasn’t “on the ground” in those states). And the pattern was always the same…some social media posts or information getting out there that, say, Texas or Kansas was going purple, or “oh, the Dem has a lead…it’s narrowing, but still leading”…and the Dem ends up losing by double digits. I’m talking about Theresa Greenfield in Iowa and Sara Gideon in Maine (Are you seriously trying to tell me that you couldn’t find a way to knock off somebody as thoroughly compromised as Susan Collins? That being said, I thought this was a very interesting post; again, if there is no message of economic populism – apparently because you don’t have the people on the ground to canvas your electorate and motivate them and independents somehow based on proposed solutions to issues they care about, or don’t understand how to make those kinds of inroads because the political terrain is tougher than you thought – well then, isn’t that the fault of whoever it was who allegedly came up with your strategy? And to be honest, I’d forgotten how red Maine really is also, having elected that brainless oaf Paul LePage as governor for not one but two terms).

Update: And speaking of Greenfield, who raised a ton of dough (though that isn’t an automatic indicator of success as we know), I thought this was interesting.

(Farron Cousins of Ring of Fire presented a recent clip of how quickly voters forgot about Collins and “I Like Beer” Kavanaugh…we’re dealing with easily distracted, low-information voters..and no, I’m not a lib looking down on anybody; I’m just pointing out a fact – I get it that they’re trying to hold everything together with themselves and their families, but it’s just that, for a variety of reasons, the David’s in this country end up firing their slingshots at other David’s instead of the Goliath like they’re supposed to, and I think that’s the biggest obstacle we’re up against. And I overwhelmingly blame Fox News, local news coverage which is more and more conservative, and AM talk radio which is ALL conservative, to say nothing of right-wing social networking and related sites, but that topic is a discussion for another day.)

And yeah, about Sara Gideon in Maine…I went to her web site, and what did I see? Beautiful sweeping vistas of the Maine woods…and oh look, there’s Sara Gideon talking to somebody on a small town street corner in front of clean streets and well-manicured grass surrounding main street shops…and Sara Gideon talking to somebody else on a small town street corner in front of clean streets and well-manicured grass surrounding main street shops…and why the hell am I even at this web site again? I forgot.

Hey, alleged DSCC geniuses…you have literally SECONDS to grab the attention of someone navigating to a web site, especially for candidates like Greenfield (where I saw something similar) and Gideon who have ZERO NATIONAL NAME RECOGNITION! Where the “elevator pitch”? What’s the value proposition for me in giving you my support?

So, given all of that, let’s talk about what that alleged political maven Chuck Schumer, Senate Dem Minority Leader, actually DID DO this cycle. Well, I must say that I just LOVED the hectoring popups to videos with Schumer saying, “Hey YOU. Yes YOU. We have a MAJOR fundraising deadline coming up.” As if I’m supposed to goddamn care when you people GIVE ME NO REASON AT ALL TO VOTE FOR YOUR CANDIDATE!

Here’s something to consider: I hate to use The Lincoln Project as an example (yeah, I know they’re basically Republican grifters), but they would run their good ads, then show a quick video afterwards about how to make a contribution. Maybe Schumer and the Dems should try something like that instead. Stop assuming people will automatically support you because you’re not Republicans. Hey, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!

This election cycle made my physically sick with stress (I’m sure you can relate…and don’t get me started on the texts and phone calls), and that should NEVER happen! To me, this is even more of a reason for a progressive version of Americans for Prosperity to pretty much indoctrinate Dem/progressive candidates so they can speak intelligently to issues particular to their state and present common sense solutions, and explain the benefits to voters “on the fence” (and DON’T rely on our corporate media for that, which is worse than useless on this stuff…if you need help with crafting policy recommendations, talk to Bernie Sanders…and yes, if Democrats ever got serious about this, I would support such an organization with a recurring contribution). Aside from basic common sense, maybe, if Schumer and the Dems did that MUCH EARLIER in the election cycle, then they wouldn’t fall prey so much to the negative ads when the dark money descends at the very end (something else Schumer and co. continually hectored me about, as if they’re somehow surprised by that). Hell, it’s worth a shot, because what they’re doing NOW isn’t resulting in any pickups (unless you have the situations in Arizona or Colorado as already noted).

Regardless, this should absolutely be the LAST election cycle with Chuck Schumer as the point person in charge of running elections for the DSCC. His track record absolutely stinks. And yes, as noted already, I know all about the “oh help us…dark money has created a lot of last-minute attack ads against our candidates and we’re losing ground” appeals. Maybe if you spent more time cementing in the mind of voters the populism you’re supposed to be all about and had fewer pictures of candidates on farms posing in front of tractors, the last-minute negative garbage wouldn’t be so effective!

Well (as noted previously), at least we still have two opportunities in Georgia, which is a blessing, even though they’re definitely long shots. And I sincerely hope the DSCC makes the ads not really about Perdue or Kelly Loeffler, but McConnell. Drum it into the heads of GA’s voters that they have NO SHOT AT ALL of relief of any kind for the COVID-19 plague with McConnell as Senate Majority Leader, which of course is the God’s-honest truth (and by the way, I commented on Alabama and Doug Jones/Tommy Tuberville elsewhere).

We have no choice but to continue the fight. Let’s try a different, more intelligent strategy. And stop getting the vapors over what centrist Dems may think (and don’t get me started on “socialism,” though, as I’ve often said, “defund the police” is terrible messaging). People like Conor Lamb and Abigail Spanberger, for example, are no more or less important than anyone else in the “big tent.” We all need to find a way to work together, or we will surely sink separately.

Update 1 11/8/20: I think this supports AOC’s argument even more, and confirms what I always suspected about the DNC.

Update 2 11/8/20: I thought this was an incredibly interesting interview with AOC (if you can get to it behind the NYT paywall). Some of what we learn is as follows: she reached out to Democrats running U.S. House campaigns to help with strategy, and 5 took her up on her offer, and all 5 won (and they were in swing districts). Also, she expressed a great deal of frustration with basically being vilified by some members in her caucus, to the point where she doesn’t even know whether or not she’ll even remain in politics 5 years from now, let alone take a run at the U.S. Senate, for example. If she were to get so exasperated to the point where she would walk away, it would be an incalculable loss for the country, let alone the Democrats and her constituents. But, if her frustration reached that point, I wouldn’t blame her one bit if she said the hell with it and gave up.


My 2020 U.S. Senate Voting Guide

July 28, 2020

What follows is my list of contested U.S. Senate contests for 2020; this table will be updated given that some primaries have been rescheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

State Republican Democrat
Alaska Dan Sullivan* Dr. Al Gross (I)
Alabama Tommy Tuberville Doug Jones*
Arizona Martha McSally* Mark Kelly
Arkansas Tom Cotton* Dan Whitfield
Colorado Cory Gardner* John Hickenlooper
Georgia Kelly Loeffler* Rev. Raphael Warnock
Georgia David Perdue* Jon Ossoff
Idaho Jim Risch* Paulette Jordan
Iowa Joni Ernst* Theresa Greenfield
Kansas** Roger Marshall Barbara Bollier
Kentucky Mitch McConnell* Amy McGrath
Louisiana Bill Cassidy* Adrian Perkins
Maine Susan Collins* Sara Gideon
Michigan John James Gary Peters*
Minnesota Jason Lewis Tina Smith*
Mississippi Cindy Hyde-Smith* Mike Espy
Montana Steve Daines* Steve Bullock
New Hampshire Corky Messner Jeanne Shaheen*
New Mexico** Mark Ronchetti Ben Ray Lujan
North Carolina Thom Tillis* Cal Cunningham
Oklahoma Jim Inhofe* Abby Broyles
South Carolina Lindsey Graham* Jaime Harrison
South Dakota Mike Rounds* Dan Ahlers
Tennessee** Bill Hagerty Marquita Bradshaw
Texas John Cornyn* M.J. Hegar
West Virginia Shelley Capito* Paula Jean Swearengin
Wyoming** Cynthia Lummis Merav Ben-David

* – Incumbent
** – Open Seat (Retirement)


My 2014 U.S. Senate Voting Guide

October 30, 2014

(Subtitled, “Fighting the ‘Dirty Dozen’ of the U.S. Senate”)

With time growing ever shorter until next Tuesday November 4th, I give you 12 of the most hotly contested U.S. Senate contests (with the possible exception of Lankford/Johnson…we’ll see).

DSullivan

Dan Sullivan (Alaska)

As noted below…

Sullivan missed a candidate’s forum, but of course he didn’t miss a fundraiser at about the same location (here).

And as noted from here

Sullivan opposes raising the minimum wage. He opposes the rights of workers to bargain for fair wages, good benefits and safe working conditions. He even wants to raise the retirement age for Social Security, which would force many Alaskans to keep working physically demanding jobs well into old age.

And of course Sullivan is getting help from Chuck and Dave Koch (here); he has a lot of company on that one.

In response, to help incumbent Dem Senator Mark Begich, click here.

FINANCE COMMITTEE

Pat Roberts (Kansas)

As noted below…

  • He has a certain residency issue, seeing as how his declared residence is in Virginia, but he’s the Repug senator from Kansas (happens on both sides, to be fair – here).
  • Roberts said that Obama was a “socialist” who wanted to “nationalize,” you know, stuff, here (Proof? Anywhere in sight?) And we do know who the “national socialists” were, don’t we?.
  • Oh, and let’s not forget that Roberts once claimed in May 2006 that “you have no civil liberties if you’re dead” in defense of a certain Former President Highest Disapproval Rating In Gallup Poll History (here).
  • And things continued to look bad for Roberts as of about three weeks ago (here).
  • In response, to help Independent challenger Greg Orman, click here.

    Lankford

    James Lankford (Oklahoma)

    Yes, he’s quite probably going to win since we’re talking about Oklahoma (sigh), but the following should still be pointed out…

  • Lankford is a climate change denier like just about everyone else in that clown show of a political party (here).

    “This whole global warming myth will be exposed as what it really is — a way of control more than anything else. And that generation will be ticked.” [Edmond Sun, 2/16/10]

    Actually, they’ll be “ticked” because you continued to ignore proven scientific fact and did nothing in response.

  • He opposes government borrowing, and even throws in some quotes from the Bible for extra hypocrisy points to try and justify himself, but owes about $100 grand to Skank of America (here).
  • Said NSA snooping foiled 54 terrorist attacks (uh, no – once more, reminds me of James Gregory and the ketchup bottle in “The Manchurian Candidate”).
  • He said he wouldn’t prohibit people from getting citizenship “forever,” since he’s a Christian (here – how decent of him).
  • Lankford is opposed by Dem Connie Johnson in the contest to fill the seat vacated by Crazy Tom Coburn.

    Coffman_Gardner

    Cory Gardner (Colorado)

    As noted below…

  • Gardner voted against defunding raids on medical marijuana dispensaries in a state where medical marijuana is legal (here).
  • As noted from here

    In three years in Congress, voted 3 times to cut Social Security and raise the eligibility age to 70, voted 5 times to raise the Medicare eligibility age to 70, more than 5 times to increase current senior’s copays for preventative healthcare, and more than 5 times to reopen the prescription donut hole that his opponent, Incumbent Dem U.S. Senator Mark Udall, helped to close. In addition, Gardner voted 5 times to turn Medicare from a guaranteed benefit to a voucher program, which would have doubled Medicare out of pocket costs for seniors by 2022 according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

  • Opposed the DREAM Act, voted to deport DREAMers, and voted against immigration reform in a state where the latter is a particularly big deal (here).
  • Supported federal fetal personhood legislation that would outlaw abortions and some birth control measures nationwide (here).
  • In response, to help incumbent Dem Senator Mark Udall, click here.

    Cassidy

    Bill Cassidy (Louisiana)

    As noted below…

  • He said here that he doesn’t believe Obama “ever worked with a poor person” (so just how many levels of duuuh are we talking about here anyway?).
  • And of course, he also wants to make the Social Security retirement age 70 (here).
  • He not only wants to basically put the EPA out of business, but he even wanted to cut funding for portraits of former EPA head Lisa Jackson, taking partisanship to a ridiculously petty new low (here).
  • Cassidy also said that he’s “not sure climate change is the issue” as Louisiana loses more of its coastline (here).
  • Given the prior two items, it should be no surprise that he’s also getting help from Chuck and Dave of course (here).
  • I’ve often disagreed with Mary Landrieu in the past, but she’s been reliable on more issues than not. She shouldn’t have this tough of a fight on her hands, but she does – fortunately, she’s a skilled campaigner, but if you’re able to help her somehow, please click here.

    Obama_White_Slavery
    Update 10/31/14: Yeah, the truth hurts, doesn’t it, Repugs (here) – time to clutch those pearls again, I see.

    Rounds_635487516144747334-Screen-Shot-2014-10-12-at-9.59.52-PM

    Mike Rounds (South Dakota)

    I think it’s been kind of an under-reported story that Rounds is more of a crook than it might appear upon first glance – to wit…

  • He was part of a scheme to sell EB-5 immigration visas to the highest bidders, and then was caught lying about it (here).
  • Also, he “wildly overstated” the number of jobs created with those EB-5 visas here.
  • Rounds knew that a former Cabinet official in his administration was heading to a job with a beef plant for which Rounds had just authorized about $600,000 in state loans (how con-vee-nient) here.
  • Rounds’ Dem opponent Rick Weiland said he wouldn’t vote for Harry Reid as majority leader if elected, opening the door for Rounds to say he wouldn’t vote for Sen. Mr. Elaine Chao under the same circumstance, a door that Rounds won’t open, apparently (kind of a cunning move by Weiland, I think – here).

    (Oh, and as DWT also tells us, Rounds extended taxpayer assistance to companies where Rounds and Dennis Daugaard, Rounds’s successor as governor in 2011 and former running mate, were investors…once again, how con-vee-nient, overseen by the same state agency, the Office of Economic Development, that oversaw the EB-5 visa program).

  • I don’t know what the recent polling is on this race – I’m sure Rounds is still ahead, but I have a feeling this will be fairly close…we’ll see; if you can help Weiland, please click here.

    joni-ernst

    Joni Ernst (Iowa)

    As noted below…

  • Ernst didn’t want to answer tough questions from that dreaded “liberal media,” so she went to Fix Noise instead, of course (here – and again here).
  • She opposed raising the minimum wage here (once again, of course).
  • Ernst also wants to privatize Social Security, which, according to one estimate, would lead to about a 45-percent out-of-pocket increase in what subscribers would pay out due to a cut in coverage (here).
  • She “flat-out lied” on the question of the so-called “fetal personhood” amendment supported by Repug Cory Gardner in Colorado, among others (here).
  • She once ran for a job as county auditor and won, and apparently the first thing she did on the job was to get rid of county board veterans who had opposed her candidacy (so much for “Iowa nice” – here).
  • Apparently, Ernst rode to fame on an ad about hog castration, and equated that with making “big spenders” in Washington “squeal” here (I don’t know what is more damning – Ernst for making such an ad, or people supporting her for it).
  • And this tells you all the ways she does the bidding of the Kochs, in case you were wondering.
  • Oh, and she apparently wanted to arrest federal officials over “Obamacare” in 2012 here (charming).

    I’ve always wondered about this race – I never heard an official explanation from Tom Harkin why he decided to give up this seat (I might have missed it, I’ll admit). That being said, I have a feeling Bruce Braley is a lot more likely to carry on in Harkin’s footsteps than Ernst will ever be (to help Braley, click here).

    Update 11/7/14: As Atrios might say, time for a blogger ethics panel (here).

    Scott_Brown_centerfold

    Scott Brown (New Hampshire – this week…)

    Well, well – Scott Brown has taken his carpetbagger act on the road to the Granite State, huh? I think we should recall the following, then…

  • Brown said here in ’09 that the Senate health care bill that was signed into law “mirrored” the one he supported in MA (for it in ’09 before he was against it in 2010, as it were).
  • He said that the stimulus created not “one new job” here (once more, uh, no).
  • He engaged in taunts that Cherokee Nation described as “racist” against Sen. Elizabeth Warren, his 2012 campaign opponent, here.
  • For someone with supposed “teabagger” small gov’t (alleged, of course) “cred,” he backed this ridiculous weapons system GE wanted in MA that the Pentagon said they didn’t need (here).
  • Here, “Wall Street Scott” got paid to talk to hedge fund managers about money in politics (no joke).
  • He voted for Dodd-Frank financial reforms, then worked to undermine them (here).
  • He reversed his 2012 stance on whether or not climate change is real (of course – here).
  • I’ll be honest – I have a particular loathing for many of the Republicans on this list, but Scott Brown belongs in a whole other contemptible category as far as I’m concerned. With that in mind, I think Jeanne Shaheen definitely can use any assistance we can provide (please click here).

    Update: Whooping cough AND polio from illegals, Scott (here)? I’m sure the independent voters will really go for that one.

    Update 10/31/14: #epicfail

    ReallyTerriLynnLand

    Terri Lynn Land (Michigan)

    As noted below…

  • Land voted to “voucherize” Medicare (here).
  • She is also tied to the Koch Brothers (of course) and their piles of “pet coke,” which are byproducts of oil refining and produced clouds of dark dust over Detroit (not a question of whether or not the coke is unhealthy, but how much – here).
  • And with that in mind, Detroit residents asked Land to spend some time in their community here to experience the health effects firsthand, and she responded with “LALALALAICANTHEARYOU.”
  • Basically, she wouldn’t have supported the bailout of the automakers under Number 44 here (in so many words, since she tried so hard to avoid the question…keep in mind that she’s running to replace retiring Dem Senator Carl Levin, who at least understood what to do when thousands of jobs were at stake).
  • Land said here that she “made the DMV work,” which is a particularly neat trick considering that Michigan doesn’t have a DMV (here).
  • She also advocates “Obamacare” repeal of course, which means that about 630,000 residents of Michigan would lose their health coverage (here).
  • To help Land’s Dem opponent Gary Peters, click here.

    Tom Cotton (Arkansas)

    Cotton is easily the biggest neophyte of this bunch…

  • Here, he said that he didn’t think women were qualified to serve in the military (nice – it should be pointed out, though, that Cotton actually did serve, unlike most other Repugs).
  • Here, he said that Iraq was involved in 9/11 (ah, a golden oldie…oh, and when it comes to evaluating Number 43 and “Deadeye Dick,” Cotton believes 9/11 shouldn’t be included, as noted here).

    The Arkansas Times link also tells us that he, like many others in his party, voted against relief for the victims of Hurricane Sandy, and he’s a darling of the Club for Growth, no matter how that affects his congressional district…figures.

  • And like a whole bunch of House Repugs (including Mikey the Beloved), Cotton voted to separate SNAP funding from the farm bill (here).
  • Oh, and Cotton wants to punish not only those who violate economic sanctions against Iran (OK), but their family members too, as noted here (um, and why?).
  • Also, did you know that Cotton himself took out student loans, but then voted against funding them for everyone else (here)?
  • Cotton also said that a woman’s “deepest hope” is to be a good wife and mother here (uh, Tom, you’re running for the U.S. Senate, not the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishops, not that a male would know something like that anyway).
  • He also wants to restore bank profits to student loan financing again here (and for doing what exactly, I wonder?).
  • He claimed here that ISIS collaborated with Mexican drug cartels, or something (that alone should disqualify him from this contest, but I’m sure it won’t),
  • Praised disaster relief program that benefited Arkansas farmers that he actually voted against (here).
  • As with Mary Landrieu, Cotton’s incumbent opponent, Dem Sen. Mark Pryor, shouldn’t have this big of a fight on his hands, but he does (to help, click here).

    Perdue

    David Perdue (Georgia)

    As noted below…

  • In what is probably the signature moment of his campaign, Perdue bragged about outsourcing jobs here (probably a ton of them based on the Daily Kos post).
  • Oh, and he also “outsourced” about $1 million to a Swiss bank here (looks like Perdue is a charter member of the “one percent”).
  • Given that, I guess it’s not surprising that Perdue loves bailouts for Wall Street, but not Detroit (here).
  • As noted here, Perdue needed “dark” money from Ohio groups to defeat U.S. House Rep (and wingnut extraordinaire) Jack Kingston in the GOP primary – normally I wouldn’t give a hoot about what happens to Kingston, but this is part of a disturbing trend.
  • Here, Perdue said he was proud that “less than 2,000 women” sued his company for pay discrimination (oh brother).
  • He basically acted like he would be OK with another government shut down here, blaming “Obamacare” and defaulting on interest payments, or something – the former part is merely propaganda and the latter part has nothing to do with reality.
  • This contest is to fill the open seat formerly held by departing Repug Saxby Chambliss, who once associated disabled Vietnam vet (and former Dem senator) Max Cleland with al Qaeda – to help Michelle Nunn, daughter of former Dem Senator Sam Nunn, click here.

    Tillis_EQUns.AuSt.156

    Thom Tillis (North Carolina)

    As noted below…

  • Tillis is pretty much a foot-soldier of Art Pope, the millionaire who took over N.C. and turned it into his own personal playground (here).
  • He would let pre-existing conditions protection disappear as part of what the GOP would do to replace “Obamacare” (here).
  • And oh – surprise, surprisenow Tillis favors expanding Medicare (here).
  • He advocated state cuts to public education, but of course supported tax cuts for private jets and yachts (here – nice…and if you think there are some recurring themes here among these characters, rest assured that it’s not your imagination).
  • Tillis would make birth control illegal, like many others in his party would also (here).
  • And as noted here, I think it’s fair to judge someone by the company they keep.
  • Tillis also encouraged college students to vote for him by digging up The Sainted Ronnie R again and harping on the 70s here; the problem is that all that happened before today’s college students were even born (just say “oops” and get out, Thom).
  • To help incumbent Dem Senator Kay Hagan, Tillis’s opponent, please click here.

    I don’t think it can be overstated just how hugely important the U.S. Senate elections in particular are this Tuesday, so it is incumbent upon all of us to vote and support Dem candidates as much as our means enables us to do so. I sincerely hope this post has given you ample evidence and motivation to do just that.

    Update 10/31/14: Based on this, I would vote for a Democrat as a protest vote, if for no other reason.


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