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    2014 Election Tag

    Last night's Republican wave drew some strong and funny reactions. Here are some tweets we gathered, and some of our own in no particular order.

    We will be covering the main contested Senate elections (all poll closing times in Eastern time): By popular demand (WARNING -- Flashing lights) And Yes, for those of you late to the game, we did set off the Fireworks and Music: Fireworks November 2014 Election Night

    Dave Weigel is worried about what is happening at the state legislative level, as the media is focused on the U.S. Senate, A wave of GOP wins in the states could radically transform the country:
    Remember the number: 69. That's how many state legislative bodies Republicans are trying to win this year, out of 99, up from the 60 they control right now. (Nebraska has a unicameral legislature, composed entirely of senators, a bit like Rome but with fewer coups.) That would give them a "state legislature supermajority," and allow them to push through the sort of policy reforms that will be quickly gummed up in a Washington that—let's be honest—will spend six or seven months passing bills before everyone gets excited about 2016. "We're on offense this year," says Jill Bader, a spokeswoman for the Republican Legislative Campaign Committee. "We're confident in the path not just to a supermajority, but in a more diverse group of elected Republicans."
    That's good news for the country, but what is a Californian like me to do today? As the rest of the country is poised to refudiate Democratic Party policies and the Obama Administration's incompetence and arrogance, we are set to re-elect Governor Jerry "Moonbeam" Brown (courtesy of Latino voters). I could drown my many sorrows in the craft beer that San Diego is becoming famous for, but I would rather celebrate good victories -- especially in local elections where independent conservatives can really make a difference. One race I am following closely is that of Town Clerk in DeWitt, NY. That may not seem like an important race, but these local victories add up, and provide our future statewide and federal team members. The Republican nominee is Karen Beseth, better known by many Legal Insurrection fans as popular conservative blogger The Lonely Conservative. I had a chance to talk with her about transitioning from opining to campaigning last week on Canto Talk:

    On this important election day let us not forget that Lena Dunham, who once described herself as the voice of her generation, wants everyone to Rock the Vote. And you can be sure it's not for Republicans. She didn't vote in the last midterm election but what does that matter? Hunter Schwarz of the Washington Post reported:
    A lot of the celebrities who appeared in the midterm Rock The Vote PSA didn’t actually vote in the last midterm Celebrities are less likely to vote in midterm elections, just like us! Rock The Vote released a public service announcement last month with a parody of Lil Jon's "Turn Down For What" that featured public figures who explained why they planned to vote in the midterm elections, but according to public records, a number of them didn't vote in the last midterm election. At least five who appeared in the PSA — "Girls" actress Lena Dunham, comedian Whoopi Goldberg, "Orange is the New Black" actress Natasha Lyonne, "Rich Kids of Beverly Hills" star E.J. Johnson, and actor Darren Criss — did not vote in the last midterm, records from Los Angeles County and New York City show.
    Of course, Ms. Dunham has bigger things to worry about at the moment. Kevin Williamson of National Review and Bradford Thomas of Truth Revolt had the audacity to review Lena Dunham's new book and (gasp) quote her. It's pretty creepy stuff. Thomas noted the passage where Dunham describes exploring her baby sister's genitals at the age of seven:

    Tom Blumer from BizzyBlog sends this video:
    It's about getting informed, getting involved, and voting. It's about getting informed, getting involved, and (obviously most relevant to tomorrow) voting: "It Matters" - Several who have seen it have said it "brought me to tears" — and I originally thought I was the only one. I am VERY worried that those who need to turn out tomorrow won't. I sense way too much complacency. We can't afford any of that. Perhaps the video can influence that — if it's seen.
    Steve Hayes at The Weekly Standard elaborates on why it matters, An Election About Everything:
    It’s about the size and scope of government. It’s about the rule of law. It’s about the security of the citizenry.

    As the election comes down to the wire in Maryland in two days, I spent some time driving around my neighborhood looking for campaign signs. My neighborhood isn't the best bellwether for Maryland election results. If my neighborhood were representative, Bob Ehrlich would have won a second term in 2006  ... with about 80% of the vote. Instead he lost to current governor, Martin O'Malley, despite Ehrlich's maintaining an approval rating that exceeded 50%. In any case lately these "Vote for the Democrats" (see the featured image above) signs have been popping up. I guess in Maryland you vote for Democrats as a matter of faith. After all Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown wouldn't have a chance if the election turned on his competence. But Maryland Republicans have an effective comeback. One sign right next a Larry Hogan (for governor)  asks if you've had enough tax increases under the O'Malley-Brown administration. 20141102_141129_Republicans_No_Taxes O'Malley intent on being the Democratic nominee in 2016, used his two terms in office to turn Maryland into a Democratic paradise. In 2007 and 2012, O'Malley convened special sessions of the Democratic controlled legislature to raise taxes. (In 2007, the special session was called to address a $1.9 billion "structural deficit" out of a total budget of some $37.3 billion of spending, which amounted to roughly 5% of the budget.) Perhaps the Democrats' tendency to hike taxes as a first resort turned off a lot of unaffiliated voters. I'm guessing that the Republican message is gaining some traction. But the other thing that I thought was remarkable was the relative lack of Brown signs. Even many homes and businesses, which had signs promoting local Democratic candidates didn't have Brown signs. Like at the house below.

    In a turn of events, the GOP is now slamming Democrats for their sexist criticisms of Republican women. A new video featuring some nasty moments from the 2014 campaign was released Friday. The Washington Free Beacon reported:
    New GOP Video Slams Offensive Democrat Attacks on Women A new GOP ad highlights the Democrat Party’s tendency this cycle to degrade women, especially if they represent the Republican Party. “Democrats sure like to insult Republican women,” the ad says. A series of clips features women and political commentators responding to various Democratic attacks against Republican woman during the current campaign cycle. Democrat Vincent Sheheen referred to Republican incumbent Gov. Nikki Haley as a “whore” during a stump speech in the South Carolina gubernatorial campaign and couldn’t contain his laughter after the offensive slip of the tongue.
    Take a look:

    Prof. Jacobson recently said "May a thousand Martha Coakleys bloom in the Democratic Party." As a Massachusetts resident, I'd like to second that statement. The Republican Governors Association recently put together the ultimate Coakley blooper reel. David Rutz of the Washington Free Beacon reported:
    Hilarious RGA Ad Shows Martha Coakley ‘Stumbling’ to Campaign Finish Democratic Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate Martha Coakley’s numerous missteps and cringeworthy moments are captured in a new ad from the Republican Governors Association. In one exchange, Coakley repeatedly dodged a question on whether she would raise fees in lieu of raising taxes and was asked by a moderator if she would pledge not to raise them. When her Republican opponent Charlie Baker promised he wouldn’t, Coakley said, “Then I’m not going to raise fees either.” In another, Coakley was booed by a debate audience when she answered “I don’t know” to a direct, yes-or-no question about whether illegal immigrants should get driver’s licenses in the commonwealth. When Baker was asked, he immediately answered, “No.”
    This is painful to watch: The Boston Globe's most recent poll has Republican Charlie Baker ahead by 7 points.

    Candidates still have plenty of time to get out the vote before Tuesday, but an eleventh hour report released by the Colorado Secretary of State has put Democrats on notice, and upped the pressure on Republicans to maintain their momentum heading into election day. Via the Associated Press:
    A report from the Secretary of State on Friday showed that 104,000 more Republicans than Democrats had cast their ballots as the state conducts its first major mail-in election. ... Republicans usually lead in early returns in Colorado but rarely by such hefty margins. Democrats and some observers expect that lead to shrink by Election Day. But more than half the ballots are in and the filing suggests how difficult it might be for Democrats such as Sen Mark Udall to survive a year in which Republicans are highly motivated.
    In a state where a high profile Senate race has come out to a toss up, a 9 point edge with over half of all eligible ballots already in the hopper is no guarantee of success, but it's also not insignificant. The Real Clear Politics Average has once-trailing Republican Senate Candidate Cory Gardner up 3.8 points over Democrat incumbent Mark Udall. This represents an almost mirror flip on the numbers since mid-September; a September 15 poll had Udall up 3.7 points, but by September 26, Gardner had closed the gap and gained a point over Udall. Colorado Republicans aren't breathing yet, though, because the gubernatorial race is much, much closer, with Republican Bob Beauprez enjoying (suffering through?) just a 0.3 point lead over Democrat incumbent John Hickenlooper. As Ed Morrissey at Hot Air notes, Republicans are dominating with demographics generally considered a sure thing for Democrats:

    Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana made some stunning comments about her constituents this week. While speaking to NBC's Chuck Todd, she implied that if she loses her bid for reelection next week, it could be due to racism and sexism. The exchange was captured on video: Her remarks were certainly newsworthy but some people in the media saw a different angle to the story which was much more important; the Republican reaction. This happens quite often, as noted by Jim Treacher: The article in Treacher's tweet is by Melinda Deslatte of the Associated Press:
    Sen. Landrieu's remarks on race anger Republicans Republicans are calling on Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu to apologize after she suggested Thursday that President Barack Obama's deep unpopularity in the South is partly tied to race. In an interview with NBC News on Thursday, Landrieu was quoted as saying that the South "has not always been the friendliest place for African-Americans."
    Isn't it strange how the very first word in the AP article is "Republicans?" Surely that's an isolated incident, right? Nope.

    Earlier this month I reported on how Republican Carl DeMaio edged out incumbent Democrat Scott Peters in a district that is rated as a toss-up by most polling agencies. A week after their win, the DeMaio campaign was hit with a serious October surprise when the campaign's former policy director, Todd Bosnich, claimed DeMaio sexually harassed him on numerous occasions. Both Bosnich and DeMaio are openly gay, and DeMaio has fiercely denied all allegations of sexual misconduct. The timing of Bosnich's allegations, first made in a CNN interview, are questionable, considering that he was fired by DeMaio in May but waited three weeks before the election to make the allegations. Furthermore, DeMaio claimed Bosnich was fired for plagiarism, and that he suspected Bosnich was responsible for the May break-in of DeMaio's campaign headquarters days before the primary. This is not the first time DeMaio has been accused of sexual misconduct. On Wednesday, San Diego council member Donna Frye said, “What I believe is that there are other victims." Frye hasn't provided further context or clarifying information, other than, "Based on others I’ve spoken with recently where there is smoke, there’s fire," but what does that even mean? In any case, her statements are putting the DeMaio campaign in full-on damage control mode. Over the summer, the story in California's 52nd District House election was that of a "New Generation" Republican---openly gay and pro-choice but a strong fiscal conservative---embarking on a long-shot upset campaign against incumbent Democrat Scott Peters, who was billed as just another liberal progressive.

    It's almost over. The election cycle, that is. It's been a bizarre one, and I think we're all about ready for a little peace and quiet from our phones, front doors, and inboxes. But before we put the ads, e-mails, and stump speeches behind us (we still have a few days to go, after all,) we'd like to take a look back at the best (or worst? we can't really decide) ads of the election cycle. Our nomination comes to you out of the great state of Texas, courtesy of the David Dewhurst for Lieutenant Governor Campaign:

    What's one to do when it looks like the midterms aren't going their way? Stealing Republican lawn signs is always an option, as long as you don't get caught. One Delaware Democrat wasn't so lucky. Thomas Lifson of American Thinker provides this stunning yet funny report:
    Dem state senator's husband busted while stealing GOP lawn signs The Democrats have become the win-by-cheating party, so much so that the President of the United States jokes about vote fraud to a party rally, just as he joked about using the IRS to punish his political opponents. Just as a fish rots from the head down, so too does a political party that depends on the votes of ineligible aliens and that fights tooth-and-nail against the sort of voter identification measures common in other advanced (and not-so-advanced) democracies. The ethos, one that predates Obama by a century or more, has filtered down to the local level, for instance a contest for the Delaware State Senate (hat tip: The Blaze). In the town of Middletown, GOP lawn signs bearing the slogan “Fix the Economy! Vote Republican” had been disappearing, so GOP volunteers set up a surveillance operation and caught the miscreant, who happened to be the husband of an incumbent state senator, one Sen. Bethany Hall-Long.
    The sting was caught on video and here it is:
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