Archive for Elections 2012

Fat Finger of Blame, Dems

None of us has enough fingers to point for Hillary’s loss. The blame goes everywhere from her to DNC officials to gerrymandering to the FBI to disaffected white women to skewed media coverage and on and on and on.

Honest to God, I’m sick of each and every pundit and other BS artist who has the definitive “insight.”

Few point to the most apparent factor — sexism. There’s a palpable joke that this go-round American voters who went for for the African-American MAN in ’08 and ’12 did not vote for the (any color) WOMAN. Let me play Capt’n Obvious here.

What’s a Democrat to do? What are all the combined Democrats to do?

Not Like the Other

Since FDR’s time, we can see that Dems and Republicans treat these campaigns and voters differently. President-elect Donald J. Trump may not be a Republican in any real sense, yet his behavior suits the GOP. He’s an anti-democracy, anti-American, zero-sum-game scoundrel.

Opposed to this win-at-all-costs attitude, Dems do what they did in Obama’s terms, or Carter’s for that matter. Liberal/progressive types do not tend to play a zero-sum game and more important, they can be much more introspective as a group.

For the latter point, start thinking of the Republican autopsy after the 2012 election. The GOP’s G.O.P. (growth and opportunity project) detailed:

  1. Why the electorate reelected Obama
  2. What the GOP would have to do going forward to sync with changing national demographics

The party did none of the essential steps. They lucked out big time, this one last time.

While it is and will continue to be less essential, as it has been for nearly a century, white women elect the President. They are, for the moment, the largest voting bloc, and they tend to turn out. Praise or blame white women for what we get. Sure, this time, their hubbies, sons, and beaux polled more for Trump than the women, but a much smaller percentage of them cast ballots.

2016 almost surely is the last time demographics allow this.That should work strongly in Dems’ favor. There are more and more people of color annually, a trend that only accelerates. White folk just can’t stop dying either, so the more conservative, even reactionary voters are a dwindling party.

Moreover, there’s no way in hell Trump’s dumb doctrinaire band of bozos will be able to deliver on his pledges to return jobs (largely to now dead industries), to renegotiate defense and economic treaties, to build the fantasy 2,000-mile wall and on and on. Sure, he can start by blaming each failure on inherited conditions or China or terrorists or this or that. As the impotent lack of solutions pile in huge heaps, voters will not be please. They’ll finally see they were conned. Then it’s time for more elections.

Now What?

Yet expect the Dems to visit the oracles (and pollsters and academics), have myriad focus groups, and create their own postmortem. Unlike the Republican Pooh-Bahs though, they are far more likely to act on the consensus findings.

That’s a bit silly in a way. Putting on my sparkly pundit robe and cap, I see a narrow loss, with Hillary snagging up to 2 million more votes, the House losing a few seats to Dems, and the Senate damned close. They could continue to do more of the same and expect to win the next POTUS vote, or two or three.

On the other hand, the GOP skunked them in 2010 and 2012 with their REDMAP project that grabbed state-level control in the 32 states that do their own redistricting. Hence, the Republicans were smarter than Democrats here. They got to gerrymander, and gamed the hell of the system following the last Census. Dems have much to atone for here.

I predict here when the Dems get control on Congress again, both houses, they still won’t be the asses GOP legislators have been at state and Congressional levels. They won’t obstruct the President. I am sure Republican voters as well as pols will view this as a sign of weakness. Dems are not in the mold of Conan the Barbarian.

 

 

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Kill the Filibuster Podcast

We can hardly wait for the new Congress, specifically the more liberal and sensible Senate with several new Progressive Dems. In particular, MA’s Elizabeth Warren, WI’s Tammy Baldwin (both Dem) and ME’s Angus King (an independent who’ll caucus Dem) don’t want a stagnant body dragged along by the House. Warren and King have already said they are gunning to reform the filibuster.

Listen in as we bring in a little background and get excited about the possibilities for moving both bills and appointments along.

We figure GOP Senators are chastened by the last election. We also figure that if they actually have to stand and talk, not just threaten to do so, they will be shamed at their reasoning and motivation. This would be, in Martha Stewart speak, a good thing.

icon for podpress  Kill or Maim the Filibuster [30:16m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Goosing the Lame Duck Podcast

Still stunned Republicans in Congress must also be hearing their leaders bluster about how the POTUS and his Dems had better do whatever they say. Huh?

We kicked around what was possible in this lame-duck Congress and short-term 2013. Listen in below as we hit the fiscal cliff (totally manufactured brinkmanship), immigration reform (and GOP efforts to get just a little Latino voter love), and more. The fiscal slope is a better term and Congress has months to concoct a fix, although House Republicans could stop this foolishness immediately by passing the Senate-approved bill extending middle-class tax cuts.

We think aloud about the kind of blame the right will take if they fool around too much, too long and too obviously.

We ended up comparing MA Dems’ rethinking after the Sen. Scott Brown victory three years ago and our amazement that the national Republicans can not thrown themselves into the kind of restructuring that served Dems so well here.

icon for podpress  Goosing the Lame Duck [30:41m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Joy, Not Despair, 2012

Without gloating, or with only a little, we held forth on yesterday’s elections.

Even the almost invariably optimistic Ryan did not see most Republicans rethinking their obstructionism. Mike predicted a deal on the auto-sequester at year’s end, only because that would be political suicide for Congressional Republicans in both houses if they didn’t show a bit of wit.

We talked about the role new Sen. Elizabeth Warren might play, the likelihood of Sen. John Kerry moving to Secretary of State, and other impacts of left-leaning victories in Congress. Mike started with a joyous recap of the four marriage-equality state-level victories.

Both of us were disappointed but not surprised at the vitriolic and graceless post-elections comments from GOP candidates and winger media types. That likely foreshadows their uncooperative futures, willing to hurt all of us for their political shading.

Listen in as we predict what might happen with the re-upped Obama and maybe even filibuster reform.

icon for podpress  Joy or Despair 2012 [35:08m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Election 2012 Showdown Podcast

Double guests, double insights today. Mat Helman of ProgressMass and Jason Stephany of MassUniting joined us to talk the races for POTUS and US Senate from MA.

There’s no secret that all four of us favor Elizabeth Warren over Scott Brown and Barack Obama over Mitt Romney. Helman and Stephany got down into details about why their and their organizations were working for them.

As background, you might also check out ProgressMass’ PDF file on Brown’s rhetoric v. record here.

Listen in as Stephany rips into the myth of Brown’s alleged independence and bipartisanship. Helman goes into depth about how Brown gets away with portraying himself as the concerned middle-of-the-road guy while voting for winger agenda on every important issue. It’s a PR primer.

We deal a bit with Brown running from a fourth and final debate and the effects of Hurricane Sandy on next week’s vote. Click below to listen.

icon for podpress  Election 2012 Showdown [33:54m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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View a Week Out

Maybe Mitt Romney could use another four years to prep, but everyone else seems ready for the elections to be done. We bring in two guests to talk to the races for POTUS and the US Senate from MA. Mat Helman from ProgressMass and Jason Stephany of MassUniting give us their views — and predictions — on both. We remain flabergasted that either race could be at all close, but they sure as heck seem to be.

If you can join us live, click here Tuesday, 10/30, at 2:30 PM Eastern. Afterward the show will be available at that URL, back here at Left Ahead, and on our iTunes page.

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Nervous, Optimistic Elections Podcast

John L. Galligan, the blogger at Chimes at Midnight, joined us again. A keen and witty political observer — and a bit of an historian — he gave some perspective on races. We covered the POTUS, the US Senate from MA, and even ended up with his local state house races in Arlington/Belmont.

Listen in as we kick around why folk might go for Romney or Brown or such, why MA has never, ever sent a woman to the U.S. Senate, and what some past elections demonstrated about the American public.

All three of us agreed that the big races will be very tight, irrationally so. We’re, as the squishy expression goes, cautiously optimistic. Click the show in the player below for our reasoning.

icon for podpress  Galligan on Elections [36:17m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Debates Week Podcast

Solo punditry today as Mike went on about the U.S. Senate and POTUS debates in the past week. He offered maybe all too obvious suggestions for the Dem candidates.

Elizabeth Warren, challenger to Sen. Scott Warren, held her own in Lowell, but Barack Obama seemed to doze through his Denver show with Mitt Romney. Mike was up at UMASS/Lowell and offered his color commentary.

The short of it that Warren must press Brown on his awful votes. He’s evaded two years of them that are against the interests of MA residents and of all women. He hides behind claiming without any evidence that she got special advancement privileges in hiring, tenure and more by noting her putative Native American fractional heritage. That’s been a smoke screen to avoid his performance. Warren simply has to insist that he cut the crap.

Likewise, the POTUS did not call Romney on one huge honking lie after another. On the campaign trail afterward, the POTUS has hit on these. He simply needs to bring that face to face in the next two goes.

Click below for a one-man rant.

icon for podpress  Debates Week [24:58m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Podium and Public Ed Shows

Our next two LA shows are set. Next Tuesday, 10/9, the usual suspects chat up the second Warren/Brown Senate and the first Obama/Romney debate-like-events. The following week, 10/16, a brash proposal from on high might revamp the Boston Public Schools.

If you can catch Ryan and Mike live pontificating on the kinda debates, go here at 2:30 PM Eastern on Oct. 9th. We’ll consider call-ins at 718-664-6966. Make nice if you want to join in on this.

The following week, John Connolly, who chairs Boston City Council’s Committee on Education, joins us. He’s driving toward a breathtaking overhaul of BPS. If you want to hear that live, go here at 2:30 PM Eastern on Oct. 16th.

Each show is available on demand afterward of hear in a player or download. Go to that show’s URL, come back here to Left Ahead, or go to our iTunes page.

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Warren/Brown: Bout 1 Podcast

We talked today about the first debate between Scott Brown and Elizabeth Warren last week. It was a real confrontation between the incumbent Senator and the challenger. We’re certain to see and hear more nastiness from Brown in the next three debates. Monday will be bout 2 at UMASS/Lowell.

Listen in as we recap the highlights and shameful depths of the hour. The aftereffects continue and will certainly reappear next week. They are already in negative ads and the behavior of Brown supporters. We hit on both sides’ strong and weak points.

We didn’t shy away from the few Warren stumbles. Brown really hurt himself though with shallow, personal, racist attacks. At the least, he put a lie to his myth of being the nice guy in the Senate.

We chat it up and down and around.

icon for podpress  Warren/Brown Senate Debate [35:02m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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