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Dan Coats Puts Indiana Into Undecided Column & the Senate Map Gets Browner

Bookmark and Share   Following up on our recent assessment of the Senate races taking place in the 2010 midterm elections, today POLITICS 24/7 moves Indiana into the possible Republican pickup column.

Despite his attempts to sound conservative, Evan Bayh has a lot to answer for and although he is usually on solid ground, Bayh was standing on a bed of shifting sand in this anti-Democrat, anti-incumbent environment.  However; Bayh is well established and has a history of convincing people that he is much more conservative than his voting record shows. So we saw his reelection as tougher than usual but safe.

But not anymore.

Senator Dan Coats has entered the race, and now that he has, with his favorable and reputable record make him a real threat to Evan Bayh as Americans sour on Bayh’s liberal party affiliation and support for some major liberal initiatives.

So In addition to New York, Washington, and Wisconsin being possible pickups for the G.O.P., POLITIICS 24/7 now adds Indiana to the list.

These increasingly competitive seats are just icing on the cake that so far has Republicans beating Democrats in Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Missouri, Nevada, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania. That’s eight seats. If Republicans can pick up one of the four possible pick up seats, that would give the G.O.P. fifty seats to the Democrats seats. That would allow Vice President Joe Biden to cast the deciding vote. If they can win two of the four pickup seats that would give Republicans 51 seats and majority control, making Joew Biden as inconsequential as he really is.

For a full analysis of the 2010 senate election map and the other races, see; 2010 Senate Races Are Turning The Map “Brown”

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2010 Senate Races Are Turning The Map “Brown”

Bookmark and Share   After Massachusetts went Brown for Scott Brown, POLITICS 24/7 recently noted that if the G.O.P. can convince voters that they have learned a lesson and truly understand that Americans are looking for a limited, constitutionally driven government, that minds its own business and focuses on that which it is suppose to, such as our national defense and sovereignty, they are on schedule to pick up a minimum of 27 House seats and 7 Senate seats. 

If Republicans can not only convince voters that they learned their lesson but also go a step further and organize themselves around a unified message, I also pointed out that they can actually pick up as many 9 or 10 Senate seats and 41 House seats to achieve a 218 to 217 seat majority and a 50/50 split or 51/49 majority in the Senate.

Over the past few days, as seen in the map below, the odds of the high end of these predictions rather than the low end, have increased greatly, especially in the Senate, where some seemingly safe Democrat seats are leaning more toward the toss up column.

In Colorado, the Centennial State, Democrat Michael Bennet, whose election is already in doubt, is looking to be in even more doubt. Bennet, was appointed by the state’s unpopular Governor, to fill Republican Ken Salazar’s seat after President Obama appointed Salazar to his Cabinet as Interior Secretary. Now it is looking like Senator Bennet’s shaky bid to a full term in the Senate will be further damaged by a challenge for the Democrat nomination from Andrew Romanoff who has just signed some high priced and reputable Democrat consultants and pollsters to his primary campaign. This will undoubtedly make it even more difficult for Democrats to compete in an environment that is becoming less and less friendly for them in Colorado as each day passes.

A quick fly over to the East and a look at Deleware reveals that since the son of the favorite son of the Diamond State, Joe Biden, is not going to seek his fathers old Senate seat, Republican Congressman Mike Castle has this one almost in the bag. Considering the lousy environment for Democrats this time around, Beau Biden is conceding that race to Castle and running for reelection as the state’s Attorney General.

From the Diamond State in the East, we head back to the West and the Silver State, where another political gem reveals itself for Republicans.

Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s poll numbers have him plummeting to earth in a death spiral that has gravity hurtling him to the ground faster than Martha Coakley in a race against Scott Brown, and unlike Coakley, who Reid’s Republican opponent will be, is not even official yet.

According to financial filings released this past Friday, the Democrat leader turned out his weakest fundraising quarter of the entire past year. Not a good sign for a campaign that is trying get his reelection bid off the ground. In addition to that, approval ratings in the low 30’s are not a good sign of Reid’s ability to bring in a hell of a lot more money for what is looking like a doomed reelection bid.

While we’re here in the West, Washington State is worth looking at. Here we find that once safe Democrat Senator Patty Murray’s sneakers are beginning to wear thin on the voters of the Evergreen State. Here, a new poll shows that three term incumbent Patty Murray pulls 42% against two time Republican Gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi who polls 45% in a Murray-Rossi match-up.

But the fault line that lies in the Democrats base does not end there. From The Evergreen State, it meanders eastward to the Badger State where the confident and once secure liberal lion cub, Russ Foolsgold, I mean Feingold, now finds himself at risk if former Governor Tommy Thompson runs against him. If Thompson does decide to go for it, something which he is seriously mulling over, Thompson would take 47% to Feingold’s 43%.

But the more you travel this great land of ours, the worse the news gets for Democrats.

As is the case south of Wisconsin, in Missouri where voters in the Show Me State seem to want to see something more than the Carnahan dynasty represent them. Robin Carnahan, the Secretary of State and daughter of the former Governor Mel Carnahan is looking to run for the seat that her father ran for and won, even though he was killed in a plane crash only days before the election. Governor Carnahan’s posthumous victory allowed the Lieutenant Governor that succeeded Mel upon his death, to appoint Mel’s wife…..Robin’s mother. But since then Mama Carnahan lost that seat in a special election and now Robin is seeking to get back the seat that she sees as part of her families inheritance. The only problem is that Robin Carnahan is now behind her Republican opponent, Roy Blunt by 6 percentage points. On top of that in the last quarter Carnahan’s financial reports indicate that she has been having a tough time getting financial support.

Having seen the Show Me State’s state of political affairs, The Keystone State offers an even sadder situation for Democrats as now incumbent Democrat Arlen Specter finds himself in a primary against Democrat Congressman Joe Sestak. That will be a race that simply saps out whatever life is left in Arlen’s senate career and make it harder to overcome the 14% that a new poll has him trailing the Republican opponent, Pat Toomey, by.

A bit further East of Pennsylvania and Democrats are even finding the friendly liberal environment of the Empire State to be a challenge. Here, Kirsten Gillibrand finds herself having a tough time keeping Hillary Clinton’s old senate seat as former Tennessee Congressman, Democrat Harold Ford, Jr. starts beating up on her before he even officially challenges her in a race for the Democrat nomination.

In a number of polls, Gillibrand already trails former Republican Governor George Pataki, if he enters the race. Whether he runs or not is still highly doubtful. But with Gillibrand viewed highly favorable by a mere 9% of New Yorkers and unfavorably by 17%, finding a decent Republican who can possibly take this should not be hard………“should not be”, but probably will.   At the very least, a good candidate will force Democrats to pump money into a seat that the DNSC would rather invest elsewhere.

These are just some of the latest developments that only add to the likely Republican takeover of seats in Arkansas, Illinois and North Dakota. But if none of that worries Democrats yet, one thing that should is a very common denominator. All of these candidates, not to mention Arkansas, Illinois and North Dakota as well, have the Democrat incumbents and the likely Democrats nominees approval ratings that are below 50%. Historically, at this stage of game, just a mere nine or so months away, any incumbent who is preferred by less than half of their constituents, is in trouble.

That in and of itself means big trouble for most Democrats and although things could change, it is getting a little late in the game to turn things around.

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Governor Corzine Tries To Appeal To Voters By Changing His Name

Bookmark and Share   In what, to date, has been an issueless and unenthusiastic race for Governor of New Jersey, incumbent Governor Jon Corzine, (D) has shaken things up in dramatic ways. Just days before state ballots are Corzine Family portraitprepared for printing, the Governor has gone to court to have his name legally changed.

After a summer of trailing his Republican opponent Chris Christie by double digits, efforts to make the unpopular Governor somewhat more likeable, forced the Corzine campaign to closely associate him to the still popular image of President Barack Obama. The move has worked and the gap has been closed. But with Christie still 3 percentage points ahead of the Governor, Jon Corzine decided that he needed to do more than just compare himself to the President of the United States. Hoping to take the lead over Christie, Governor Corzine took his case to court where he filed papers to change his name to Jonnie Obama.

A spokesman for the Governor called the move “an act of necessity”. Campaign spokesman Jack Kennedy (formerly known as Adolf Mitler) explained “we just have not been able to move our numbers lately and with nothing else for us to add to how we intend to improve the quality of life in New Jersey,  Governor Corzine felt that the people of the state would appreciate having a Governor named after our President”.

In a statement released by now Governor Obama the newly named candidate for reelection focused on what he called his “willingness to go to great lengths to win”. He further stated “if sacrificing some of my personal fortune accumulated by a lucrative Wall Street golden parachute is not enough to get votes, than I am willing to sacrifice my identity and my name for the sake of New Jersey

Prior to this extreme move, then  Governor Corzine, had sought medical advice regarding the best way to change his complexion. In a process opposite to Michael Jackson’s skin bleaching, the Governor wanted to darken his skinOy Vey with a political procedure called Obamanizing. In the end strategists decided against the procedure due to fears that a dark skinned Corzine might come across too minstrel show-like and too politically incorrect.

Democrat Lt. Gov. Nominee Loretta Weinberg

Democrat Lt. Gov. Nominee Loretta Weinberg

Democrat pollster B.J. Clinton, (formerly known as Ernest Madoff) pointed out that the name change has already had a positive impact on Governor Obama’s once static numbers. Analysts from the Jim McGreevy School of Political Ethics believe that the Governor’s name change was a wise move. The schools executive director Patty Pantsdown (aka: Lou Morella) called the name change a stroke of political genius. According to Pantsdown “Oh honey, now after months of trying to associate himself with President Obama in an attempt to deflect the focus off of the Governor’s higher taxes, tolls, unemployment and lower state revenues and job opportunities, changing his name to Jonnie Obama does a number of things. First of all it adds a little spice to an otherwise drab name. Secondly, right away, it brings the voters minds to exactly what the Governor needs to put the focus on, which is anything but the condition that the state is in right now and last but not least, it adds more meaning to the phrase ‘my brutha’ which is how the Governor ends all of his speeches when referring to the President”.

Golden Girl Sophia Petrillo as St. Sen. Loretta Weinberg

Estelle Getty as fiesty Golden Girl Sophia Petrillo

Kitty Litteur, a spokesman for Governor Obama’s lieutenant governor running mate , Loretta Weinberg, notified members of the press that Senator Weinberg is also going to seek a name change. The state senator who describes herself as a “feisty Jewish grandmother” is exploring the possibility of changing her name to Sophia Petrillo, the name popularized in the role played by Estelle Getty on the hit 80’s sitcom Golden Girls. According to Litteur, “we have the Jewish grandmother vote in the bag, now we’re going after the Soprano vote and Italian grandmothers”.

Meanwhile the campaign of Chris Christie released a statement of their own which made clear that as usual, they would “not go into detail”. They do however claim that the Republican nominee for Governor anticipated this from the beginning. Chris Christie denied that he would try to change his name before the November ballots were printed. “I do not intend to seek a name change that distracts from any of the distractions that I have been working hard to create during the course of this campaign” said the Republican hopeful.

Representatives for his lieutenant governor nominee, Kim Guadagno, confirmed that she too will not have her name changed. Press Secretary Barnaby Jones claimed that no one knows who Kim is or that she is running for anything so we would rather not have to explain who she is, what she is running for and her name change all at the same time.

The Christie camp is dealing with it’s own troubles and does not want to play the name game. The Republican ticket is finding it hard to keep pace with all the spending that Governor Obama has invested in the race. So avoiding the $39.95 legal fee for a legal name change in New Jersey is seen as a cost saving measure. However, the lack of finances in the closing days of the campaign still concerns Christie.

For a quick infusion of cash, the Christie campaign has signed on to two new contracts. One has Chris Christie contracted to be in the cast of next seasons, “Biggest Loser” which is a show that has teams of overweight celebritiy has-beens, compete against one another to see which team can lose the most weight. The other contract is for a string of 15 new ads that will feature Chris Christie along side of Jenny Craig spokeswoman Valerie Bertinelli. Mr. Christie will be used for the “before” pictures used in comparing the dramatic results seen after one has used a new Jenny Craig diet program that is designed for men.

 Gubernatorial Cnadidiate and Wannabe Chris Christie

Gubernatorial Cnadidiate and Wannabe Chris Christie

The unorthodox campaign tactics being seen in the race for Governor of New Jersey has many scratching their heads. Shaquida Nelson of Newark said “I thought Jon Corzine was that white boy who hits that doohickey on ice for the New Jersey Devils, I never knew he was a brutha”. Denis O’Shea of Matawan wanted to know why Valerie Bertinelli still has not gotten back together with Eddie Van Halen.

Political analysts claim that the disinterest in the campaign is to be expected when the top two major candidates have upside down poll numbers that indicate more people have unfavorable opinions of them than favorable opinions of them. They add that the lack of any public awareness in the campaign is in large part due to the fact that neither Corzine or Christie have said anything of value during the campaign. That and the state’s unique North-South divide and its disjointed news coverage that relies on New York and Philadelphia, helps to keep New Jersey voters uniquely uniformed.

As for their assessment of Governor Obama’s name change one Quinnipiac pollster who wanted to remain anonymous believes that the biggest difference the name change will make is in the area of billboards. According to him, Governor Obama invested a lot of money in billboards that connect him as close as possible to the President and now the Governor will have to invest some money in having those billboards changed from reading Obama/Corzine to now read Obama/Obama.

Corzine Campaign Billboards Before The Name Change

Corzine Campaign Billboards Before The Name Change

Corzine's New Obama/Obama billboards
How the new Governor Obama campaign billboards will appear

 

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New Jersey’s Race for Governor: An Unbelievably Pathetic Political Exercise

Bookmark and Share    The race for Governor of New Jersey is one that has been a truly wasteful political exercise. It is by far the most shallow, useless and pointless race for office to have taken place since Missourians elected their dead former governor, Mel Carnahan to the U.S. Senate over then incumbent Senator John Ashcroft.
Disasterous Governor Jon Corzine

Disasterous Governor Jon Corzine

In this case New Jerseyans may as well have two dead candidates on the ballot. As it is, I have firmly concluded that both are brain dead.

In one corner we have incumbent Jon Corzine. He came into office as a financial genius. He was a Wall Street wizard who accumulated a personal fortune in excess of $400 million dollars, bought himself a seat in the United States Senate and then decided to buy the Governor’s Mansion. In just his first six months in office he increased taxes in New Jersey by almost $2 billion dollars. And after promising to “control spending”, not only did he raise taxes at the beginning of his term, now at the end of his term he created a budget deficit slightly larger than the total amount of revenue he raised in tax increases when he first came to office. On top of that Jon Boy increased tolls in the state and tried to pass a plan that would put tolls on roads that do not currently have any and more than triple the ones that currently exist.

He has also raised the state sales tax and created new taxes on everything from gym memberships to landscaping. And let us not even get into the business and corporate taxes that he raised. His assault on business in New Jersey drove them out of the state and is in large part, the reason why unemployment went from 4.3% at the beginning of his term to above 9.3% at the end of his term.

Throw in some of the most crushing state mandates in the areas of housing and other areas of social engineering and scandals involving him, his girlfriend, secret state contract negotiations and the union thathis girlfriend was the head of and Corzine has just been a disaster. He has captained the ship of state and taken us for a ride, a ride on the Hindenburg.

Now faced with a record of ruin, Jon Corzine really does not know what to run on. What does this man have to point to as a reason for why he deserves a second term? Is it because we like a decreased quality of life?  Maybe it is because we hate jobs and the businesses that create them? Or maybe we like to have a Governor who seems to be as corrupt as New Jersey is reputed to be?

The bottom line is that Jon Corzine has nothing to point to that would give anyone a reason to reelect him. Nothing except a state strewn with the wreckage of political liberal policy initiatives that terrorize life in New Jersey and has  gutted business out of the state and emptied the change out of our pockets.

So what is a failed politician to do when trying to get reelected to a job he doesn’t deserve? Well in the case of Jon Corzine you point to anything other than yourself.

Since 45% of the people have a favorable opinion of the Governor and 52% have an unfavorable opinion of him, he needs to associate himself with someone who is liked. For Democrats who else could that be other than the messiah himself, President Barack H. Obama.

Ever since the race for Governor began in earnest in June, all Corzine has done is associate himself with President Obama. He has tried to do everything but darken his skin and change his name to Jonnie Obama, in an attempt to make this election a referendum on anything but himself and hisdisasterous record as Governor.

There has been no campaign ads discussing the Governor’s plans for our future or his successful efforts of the past. There have been no references to more jobs or economic growth. There has only been references to President Obama and attempts to morph his opponent, Chris Christie, into George Bush.

The fact that Corzine has nothing to run on has been quite obvious to me from the beginning, but then, the other day, I was driving in new Brunswick. As I was going down Hamilton Street, there it was, lo and behold, right before my eyes was one of the first campaign signs I have seen in the race for governor. It was a humongous billboard and it featured President Obama prominently placed front and center with the words “KEEP IT GOING“.   And to the right of the President stood none other than Jon Corzine.   Astonished, I had to back up and pullover. I stared at this monstrosity in utter amazement. My first thought was, “what an ass”. My second thought was, “keep what going?” High unemployment? Socialism? Taxes? Tolls? What should we keep going? After a few moments I snapped a picture, got t over my shock and Corzine’s gall,  and continued to drive on, knowing more than ever before, that the Governor’s reelection effort is pitiful and truly embarrassing.

Corzine camapign billboard on Hamilton Street In Somerset, NJ near New Brunswick

Corzine camapign billboard on Hamilton Street In Somerset, NJ near New Brunswick

But not as embarrassing as his opponent in the other corner though.

Republican Chris Christie had it all. He was one of those rare candidates for statewide office in New Jersey who had excellent name ID. In a state where it is truly tough to get yourself known, Chris Christie was well known. After eight years as the state’s federal prosecutor, he had a perfect record that cracked down on one of the most important issues that concerns New Jersey residents. Corruption.

But after winning the Republican nomination, due in large part to that reputation, Chris Christie has run a campaign that can only best be described as terrible. To put it in plain English, his campaign sucks. There is no coherent theme to it and thus no clear reason why people should vote for him. Just as Jon Corzine is hoping that by making his name synonymous with Barack Obama will get him reelected, Chris Christie is simply hoping that his name not being Jon Corzine is enough to get him elected.

Quite pathetically, the strategy could have worked. For months Chris Christie was ahead of Jon Corzine by double digits. But unfortunately Christie was forced to open his mouth as the campaign progressed. In doing so, people discovered that he really has nothing to say. When pressed for details on anything he says such as “I will get property taxes under control”, Christie stands their as if he does not know what the word “details “ means. Like Jon Corzine, Christie has no clear plans for New Jersey’s future either. As a result Chris Christie’s once double digit lead is now down to 3%. So close is the race between the comatose candidates that the relatively small percentage of votes that independent candidate Chris Dagget is promising to get, could just be enough to keep Jon Corzine in office.

Pointless Republican Candidate for Governor Chris Christie

Pointless Republican Candidate for Governor Chris Christie

Like Jon Corzine, Christie’s numbers were once good but now they are upside down. 46% of state residents have a favorable opinion of Chris Christie while 50% have an unfavorable opinion of him. In both cases more people dislike Christie and Corzine than like them. What kind of choice is that for voters? And what kind of optimism does that demonstrate from New Jerseyans? To have to choose between two people that we do not like is not exactly something to be enthusiastic about. But that is what happens when neither candidate can come up with a good reason to vote for them. The apathy so far seen in this election is mainly the result of two men who have done nothing but show themselves to be unworthy of governing.

In the meantime, this week, things finally heated up in the race for Governor. I know because I actually heard it on the news. The race for New Jersey Governor had finally been important enough for mention on the major news networks from the other cities that New Jersey relies on for its news . The topic of discussion was heavy. I mean it. It was really heavy. It dealt with Chris Christie’s weight.  Christie’s feelings were hurt over what he saw as Governor Corzine’s attempt to portray him as being overweight.

He is overweight, but Christie  accused Corzine of trying to use his weight as an issue in the campaign. From my point of view, in a campaign where no issues are being discussed, any issue is a welcome one.  But Chris Christie does not like the issue of his excessive weight.  Apparently he doesn’t like the issue of taxes, regulations or what he would do as Governor either but this one he really did not like.  Of course Governor Corzine denied ever making the rotund Republican’s tipping of the scale an issue. He said, no candidate ever likes the way that the opposition depicts them.

After hearing about this controversy, I could not help but wonder if this campaign was not actually a Saturday Night Live skit being played out for months now. I mean first of all, Jon Corzine has no right to make fun of anyone, especially when it comes to looks. He has been in more than a few embarrassing situations himself and is not exactly the cover model for Mens Health magazine. As for Christie, he is overweight but if his fattiness is a topic that bothers him, as a potential governor I would hope he knows how to solve that problem. Lose a pound or two off of his fat ass! That might help. Put down that pizza pie and cheesecake, run a lap around your campaign bus and pick up a good read about how a real tax deduction plan can be formulated for New Jersey. That might help you to a pound and come up with some details that could give meaning to your attempt to become a Governor.

But really, at this point what difference does it make? Both Corzine and Christie are lightweights when it comes to leadership and problem solving.  As for  New Jerseyans, well, we are just screwed because between the fatheads of both tweedledumb and tweedledumber there is no hope.

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