David Kirkpatrick

April 28, 2009

Arlen Specter switches parties

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:44 pm

The Pennsylvania senator leaves the GOP and doesn’t even simply become an independent. That says a lot about just how toxic the Republican Party has become.

It truly is getting down to the rump, and … you know, I’m not going to make a bad joke about rumps and toxicity right here. You can supply your own punchline with that softball setup.

From the link:

I have decided to run for re-election in 2010 in the Democratic primary.

I am ready, willing and anxious to take on all comers and have my candidacy for re-election determined in a general election.

I deeply regret that I will be disappointing many friends and supporters. I can understand their disappointment. I am also disappointed that so many in the Party I have worked for for more than four decades do not want me to be their candidate. It is very painful on both sides. I thank specially Senators McConnell and Cornyn for their forbearance.

I am not making this decision because there are no important and interesting opportunities outside the Senate. I take on this complicated run for re-election because I am deeply concerned about the future of our country and I believe I have a significant contribution to make on many of the key issues of the day, especially medical research. NIH funding has saved or lengthened thousands of lives, including mine, and much more needs to be done. And my seniority is very important to continue to bring important projects vital to Pennsylvania’s economy.

I am taking this action now because there are fewer than thirteen months to the 2010 Pennsylvania Primary and there is much to be done in preparation for that election. Upon request, I will return campaign contributions contributed during this cycle.

While each member of the Senate caucuses with his Party, what each of us hopes to accomplish is distinct from his party affiliation. The American people do not care which Party solves the problems confronting our nation. And no Senator, no matter how loyal he is to his Party, should or would put party loyalty above his duty to the state and nation.

October 22, 2008

Is McCain giving up

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:55 pm

It’s really starting to look that way given the states he’s already conceding based on where his dollars are going.

From the link:

Note that it’s not just Colorado on the chopping block, but also Minnesota, Wisconsin and New Hampshire. Michigan was conceded some weeks ago. Iowa and New Mexico are on life support. Essentially, McCain seems to be giving up on any path to victory that does not involve Pennsylvania — a state that we presently project Barack Obama to win by 9.7 points.

April 22, 2008

Pennsylvania votes

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 9:16 pm

Finally, the dry spell is over and Pennsylvania has voted.

All numbers from CNN.com and CNN.

Earlier with 15% reporting the state was already called for Clinton holding a six point lead 53-47. Penn is a state Clinton needs to win by double digits to truly remain viable. Doesn’t mean there’s any chance of her dropping out without that margin, but a nine-point, or less, win is essentially a loss.

Update 9:20 pm — 61 percent in, Clinton leads by eight points 54% to Obama’s 46%. If this differential holds he’ll have erased about twelve points off his deficit in Penn in around two months. Clinton lead by a solid 20 percent before the Texas and Ohio vote in early March.

Update 9:50 pm — 79% in, Clinton reaches the double digit threshold 55-45. According to CNN exit polling suggested something tighter than eight points. Looks more movement is possible, or the exit polls were off as usual.

Update 10:15 pm — 87 % in, holding at 55-45 for Clinton.

Over at the GOP vote, there’s still some anti-McCain protest voting going on. Ron Paul has 16% and Mike Huckabee 12% of the vote.

This’ll be the last update unless the Democratic numbers significantly move one direction or the other.

April 17, 2008

This post about one of tonight’s debate “moderators” …

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 2:24 am

 … from Matthew Yglesias is getting a lot of traction on the blogosphere. And for good reason.

The linked post:

I’d forgotten that for months now Charlie Gibson has been asserting that $200,000 is a solid middle-class income, blissfully unaware that just 3.4 percent of U.S. households have an income of $200,000 or more. You could be richer than 96 percent of your fellow citizens, but still just folks to Gibson. Obviously that’s not on a par with being bad at bowling or anything on the “out of touch” scale, but it’s still disappointing to learn that even our salt of the earth working class multimillionaire television news personalities aren’t utterly infallible.

April 1, 2008

Obama gaining in Penn

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 2:58 pm

It looks like the predicted, and expected, Clinton blowout in Pennsylvania might not come to pass.

It’s fairly widely accepted she needs to win the state by around 20 points to remain the least bit (and that right there is a real stretch) viable in the race.

From the (second) Daily Dish link:

Rasmussen has Clinton by five in Pennsylvania: last week the spread was 10. SurveyUSA has her by 12: last week it was 19. A good trend for Obama. We’ll see if it keeps up.

March 12, 2008

Does Clinton have Pennsylvania locked up

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 4:11 pm

This is an interesting bit of analysis that proposes just that.

From the link:

The press will try to make a race of it. There will surely be polls showing the race tightening, perhaps even suggesting that Obama could win it. But that’s just part of the predictable song-and-dance to sell newspapers and up ratings (and hit counts, for the political blogs and news sites that sell ads). The way the odd-numbered delegate districts break down, the demographics, the fact that it’s a closed primary (no Independent voters allowed), and its long border with the senator’s New York state make it a lead-pipe cinch for Clinton; to the extent that Obama supporters enter the “no, but yes, we can win it” narrative they’ll be walking into a trap.

Clinton has now moved 250 staffers (about 13 for each of Pennsylvania’s 19 Congressional districts) into the Keystone state and is opening two dozen field offices. She has the support of Governor Ed Rendell and his considerable machine, not to mention a phalanx of mayors including Michael Nutter of Philadelphia. They’re carrying a straight flush and they’re betting everythingon it. That makes it tempting for Obama fans to seek a knockout punch, but all their candidate really needs to do is survive to the next round – North Carolina, two weeks later – without having fallen into a rigged expectations game to clinch the nomination.

The new SurveyUSA poll(Clinton 55 percent, Obama 38) tells part of the story.

But a bigger part of the story was already told in Ohio’s 6th Congressional District. That’s the long, thin border district with West Virginia that The Field called the “Pennsyltucky” district. The Obama campaign outspent Clinton on TV and media advertising there, and Obama dedicated his final Ohio appearance in Athens, within that district (as well as sending rockers Arcade Fire to stoke up the youth vote on primary eve), but the Appalachian demographics were against him from the start: Clinton won there with 72.4 percent to just 27.5 for Obama.

The takeaway for Obama according to the post is to avoid too high of expectations in the state, and not let the media machine turn a Clinton victory into more than it it really is demographically.

In the big picture I don’t think even a Pennsylvania blowout for Clinton significantly changes her losing position math-wise. This Democratic nomination is an interesting game this year, but as has been written many other places, I wonder if it may not chew-up and disillusion many young voters who just joined the process.

It seems a lot of Ron Paul’s support has already begun slipping back into fringe-issue groups rather than a new libertarian/conservative political movement, and I bet many college-age voters tracking this campaign who thought the GOP had a stranglehold on scorched-earth politics and dirty tricks are growing more and more disgusted with the Clinton campaign and its ongoing “kitchen sink” attack.

February 14, 2008

Nanny state in action Penn-style

Filed under: et.al., Politics, Technology — Tags: , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:36 pm

I’m never in favor of cities using automated methods to collect fines from the citizenry — red light cameras no exception.

This case from Pennsylvania might just take the cake.

From the link:

… according to the people who sent a red-light camera ticket last July, Verissimo did do something wrong. He got hit with a $100 fine.

“As soon as you cross that red-light, you have to pay the ticket. I understand that,” Verissimo said.

But he said he was just showing respect to the dead.

“We were in a funeral procession. There are exceptions to the rules,” he said.

He’s right. And it’s more than just an exception — it’s the law, Hairston reported.

Pennsylvania law clearly states drivers in funeral processions may proceed past a red light signal or a stop sign. And not only that, a police officer waived him through the red light.

The officer is actually on the red-light camera ticket. Also visible is the police SUV.

(Hat tip: Fark)