So What Does It Mean?

Four states had their primaries yesterday. Here’s a little of what experts are saying about it throughout the blogosphere and media.

An analysis in Politico claims that in the Colorado race, the Democrats and President Obama are the big winners. Michael Bennett, President Obama’s choice, beat out Andrew Romanoff, given the nod  by Bill Clinton, for the Senate race.

But Karl Rove says not so fast. He told Fox’s Happening Now that he sees the Senate race “not good news for Democrats. I’m mystified by Politico’s analysis,” he says. “In the Senate primary 407,000 people voted in the Republican primary vs. 339,000 in the the Democrat. In a state that went for Obama , this would worry me.  The losing Republican got more votes than the winner in the Democrat primary. The amount of energy for the grassroots Republican candidate  was high versus the Democrats with much lower turnout.”

In a poll sponsored by American Crossroads, he notes, the 13 Senate races give the GOP leads in the generic ballot breaking down 47/36. “The Democrats are facing a terrible headwind,”  Rove says.

Powerline blog, whose writers live in Minnesota, say that Democrat gubernatorial candidate Mark Dayton just eked out a win. The scion of the family that started Target stores spent a lot of money and just squeaked by. His game plan, the writers say, is to target (sorry!) Tim Pawlenty, the Republican governor as having imposed an unwarranted austerity and the rich must start paying more.

Not a big winner in a state that is already plagued by taxes higher than most other states. Powerline says Dayton disgraced himself in his single term as Senator and is “an alcoholic with mental problems.”

That sounds promising until you consider that Minnesotans also elected Al Franken.

In Georgia, Gingrich/Huckabee backed Deal won over Sarah Palin endorsed Handel for the governorship. It was neck and neck so who knows what that means.

In Connecticut  World Wrestling Entertainment founder Linda McMahon body slammed her two Republican opponents. She told the AP that she is ready to spend up to $50 million of her own money on her campaign, so let’s get ready to rumble!

A Top of the List for Memphis

Last night our own Ben Ferguson, talk radio host on KWAM, joined the panel of Fox Business Networks’ “Money Rocks” show with Eric Bolling. Others on it included former New York Congressman Vito Fossella,  Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa, detective Bo Dietl, comedian Joe Piscopo. The topic? Which state has the most corrupt politicians.

It was a fierce competition what with several New Yorkers there, Chicago natives and Piscopo from New Jersey, but Ferguson held his own. He cataloged the various contributions, shall we say, of our own beloved Ford family. Of course, he was able to personally thank New York state for taking Harold Ford Jr. I concur. It was nice of them to take him. Now would they like any others?

Our primary is over, but…

Four states have primaries today and several of them have been interesting to say the least.

In Georgia, the big race is the governorship. Sarah Palin has endorsed former secretary of state Karen Handel, as has  Mitt Romney. Her opponent, Nathan Deal, got the backing of Newt Gingrich and Mike Huckabee. The polls have them neck and neck.

Colorado has the contests for Senate and Governor. The Democrat candidates are current senator Michael Bennet and Andrew Romanoff. Romanoff got the push from Bill Clinton, ticking off Obama who got Bennet in the Senate after tapping  then Senator Ken Salazar to become Interior Secretary. The Republicans are Jane Norton and Ken Buck.  Sarah Palin has been mum on Jane Norton. Jim DeMint and the Tea  Party backed Buck, but he shot himself in the foot with this quote: “Please tell those dumbasses at the Tea Party to stop asking questions about birth certificates while I’m on   camera.” Ouch.

For the governorship, Republicans were poised for gains until a few unfortunate events. Former congressman Scott McInnis has been attacked for plagiarism; his opponent Dan Maes got the Tea Party endorsement; and then Tom Tancredo threw his hat into the ring as the Constitution Party candidate. Rasmussen has Tancredo splitting the vote and handing it to Democrat Denver mayor John Hickenlooper. Maybe tonight’s primary will settle some of this uncertainty.

In Connecticut, the battle for Senator Chris Dodd’s seat is between the Republicans. Former representative Rob Simmons goes up against Linda McMahon who has not held public office. She has lots of money from her World Wrestling Entertainment company. The Democrat is state attorney general  Richard Blumenthal who came under fire for claiming to have served in Vietnam when he never was there. Hopes for a Republican victory had been high because of that scandal and in light of Scott Brown’s victory against state attorney general Martha Coakley, but polls are not currently in our favor.

Minnesota’s primary concerns the governorship. The Republican candidate is Tom Emmer and he could cruise to an easy primary victory.  The Democrat Farm Labor candidates are former Senator Mark Dayton, Matt Entenza and Margaratet Anderson Kelliher.

Stay tuned.

Sweep predicted in reverse

Sweep“It will be a long time before Republicans are elected in significant numbers countywide,” was the last quote in a front page story in The Commercial Appeal on Sunday, June 27.

You probably remember the story and the headline: “Democrats talk of election sweep in Shelby County.”

It caused quite a bit of queasiness  and fear on the part of  Shelby County Republicans.

Author Zack McMillin went on to say “In 2010, admit even the area’s most optimistic Republicans, conservatives should be afraid, very afraid. Because it is possible, perhaps even likely, that the Aug. 5 elections will create a county government run almost completely by Democrats beholden to a voting base that will expect greater attention to Memphis concerns.

“Shelby County’s demographics – low median income, large African-American voting base, urban white voters – have made it reliably Democratic in presidential elections, with Barack Obama in 2008 getting 63 percent of the vote and 100,000 more votes than Republican John McCain.”

“We have the numbers and the numbers don’t lie, as the rapper said,” said Van Turner, the county’s Democratic party chairman. “We all win if you vote for 10.”

Flash forward to the night of August 5.

There was a sweep, all right, but not in the direction they wanted or predicted. The headline the next morning read: “Republicans sweep all 9 of the contested Shelby County races.”

So what happened?

Hard work by a galvanized Shelby GOP won the day.

To those breast beating when the story came out, I remember saying the story was a good thing. If this was true, the predictions would light a fire under all hesitant Republicans and get them to the polls.

And the more likely case, that the newspaper wanted to dispirit Republicans and funnel perceptions in the direction they wanted, seemed closer to the truth. With all the activity I saw coming from the Shelby GOP, I just couldn’t believe we wouldn’t get our voters out.

Now I wonder what the political geniuses see for November 2? I suggest you print out the story, as I did, and refer to it any time you have some doubts. Plus, it will always provide me with a laugh when I need one.

Cocky Cohen

Fresh off his Democrat primary victory, Congressman Steve Cohen wasted no time praising himself and dismissing his Republican opponent, Charlotte Bergmann.

He has already assumed that he will have a third term and looks to tackle the issues of infant mortality, employment discrimination and jobs.

Question: What has he done in his first two terms besides push for more women’s restrooms in public facilities and try to join the Congressional Black Caucus? I think the infant mortality rate and lack of jobs here have been growing since he went to D.C.

As for Bergmann, Cohen calls her a “right winger” and refuses to debate her because of her “agenda.” Ludicrously, he says that she can’t possibly understand the African American voter as well as he does.


Whenever someone refuses to debate his opponent, you have to ask what they are afraid of. If she’s that out of touch with Memphians he should relish the opportunity to show this in a debate.

Why We Are

What’s the point of a political club? Why did we form one?

People have asked that of members of the Midtown Republican Club.

My answer: yesterday’s election.

Yesterday, when I was a judge at my precinct, people complained that they didn’t understand the ballot. Why did you have to choose a party, was a question frequently asked. Who are these judges and clerks running? Why should I care? Does it really matter who they are? An election official even said to me that with families, kids, work and schedules, it was impossible to make an informed vote.

I couldn’t disagree more!

If you value your freedom, if it means something to you, you’ll take the time.

If you realize the import these people’s decisions will have on your income and personal life, you’ll take the time.

If you care about the direction of the city and country, you’ll take the time.

And that’s where our club comes in. You can attend candidate rallies, read their positions in the newspaper (if you trust they will not be biased) and watch some of them on TV. But the club allows a forum for the candidates to come and talk directly to the voter, especially in the smaller races that won’t be profiled on TV. It gives us the opportunity to ask them questions directly and hear what they have to say without any editing.

It means that if we like a candidate we can make calls for them, write letters and inform our friends. It doesn’t mean we are all in lockstep. Members make their own decisions on voting.

The result, I think, is that more informed voters stepped forward and helped our near total Republican sweep.