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Archive for August, 2011

Americans Leave Blue States for Low-Tax Red ones

From the Daily Beast:

Conservatives yearn for a big, clarifying electoral victory in November 2012, but they’re already winning decisively whenever Americans vote with their feet—or their moving vans.

New Census numbers show citizens fleeing by the millions from liberal states and flocking in comparable numbers to bastions of right-wing sentiment. Call it the Great Political Migration.

Between 2009 and 2010 the five biggest losers in terms of “residents lost to other states” were all prominent redoubts of progressivism: California, New York, Illinois, Michigan, and New Jersey. Meanwhile, the five biggest winners in the relocation sweepstakes are all commonly identified as red states in which Republicans generally dominate local politics: Florida, Texas, North Carolina, Arizona, and Georgia. Expanding the review to a 10-year span, the biggest population gainers (in percentage terms) have been even more conservative than last year’s winners: Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Idaho, and Texas, in that order.

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Mississippi GOP Aims for a Sweep

From the Wall Street Journal:

The Republican Party has launched a major push to capture the Mississippi House of Representatives this fall, a goal that has eluded it since Reconstruction and that would remove nearly every vestige of Democratic control from the state’s government.

A win for Republicans in Mississippi on Nov. 8 would complete a near sweep of state governments across the South that began decades ago and accelerated in last year’s midterm elections. South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama and Tennessee now have Republican governors and the GOP controls both houses of the legislature in those states and North Carolina.

Mississippi is one of only four states holding legislative elections this year. The others are Louisiana, Virginia and New Jersey, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

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Redistricting Scorecard: Florida could be the Key

From the Washington Post:

Nearly half the the states required to draw new congressional maps before the 2012 election have done so, and Republicans and Democrats are neck-and-neck in the battle to create new districts for their side to win.

According to the Washington Post’s Redistricting Scorecard, a new proposed GOP map in Georgia that creates two winnable seats pulls Republicans about even with Democrats in the quest to create favorable new seats. In the states where we know how the maps are likely to turn out, the Post’s projections now have Republicans gaining one seat, while Democrats would keep their current number of seats.

It should be noted, of course, that much has yet to play out, including some crucial maps in Florida and New York. Florida, in particular, could determine which party wins the battle to create new seats.

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GOP Capitalizes on Historic Gains

From NewsOK:

OKLAHOMA wasn’t the only state after the 2010 elections to capitalize on a right turn.

An analysis in the July/August issue of State Legislatures magazine says GOP victories in the states have produced more results than the party’s takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives. Republican legislatures and governors have produced major changes on a variety of issues, including pension reform, collective bargaining, voter identification, abortion and immigration.

Nationwide, Republicans picked up more than 740 legislative seats in 2010. The number of states in which the GOP holds a majority in both legislative houses grew from 14 to 26.

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PA: Governor Backs Voter ID Bill

From the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:

The state’s top election official came out in support of a GOP-backed effort to require voters to show photo identification every time they cast a ballot in Pennsylvania.

Secretary of the Commonwealth Carol Aichele said the proposed ID requirement would make it harder to commit voter fraud.

She made her remarks Tuesday morning in Lancaster at the Pennsylvania County Election Officials Conference. State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe, R-Cranberry, has been the most vocal proponent of the change in election law. His bill passed the state House in the spring and awaits action in the Senate.

Democrats largely oppose the proposal, saying that it would be unnecessarily burdensome, especially to Pennsylvanians who don’t have driver’s licenses.

Mr. Metcalfe said his legislation ameliorates that concern because it would provide for free photo IDs for non-drivers.

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WSJ: Deadlock in Ohio Over Union Rights

From Wall Street Journal:

Labor unions have rejected an offer by Ohio Gov. John Kasich to seek a compromise on a new law that removes most collective-bargaining rights for the state’s 350,000 public employees, as a fight over the legislation heads toward a statewide referendum in November.

On Wednesday, Mr. Kasich, a Republican, and the party’s leaders in the Ohio Senate and House made a pitch to public-employee union leaders to “avoid the bitter political warfare” over the law, known as Senate Bill 5. In a letter Thursday, however, unions said a “fresh start must begin with a full repeal of Senate Bill 5.”

Rob Nichols, a spokesman for Mr. Kasich, said the governor’s offer to meet with union officials Friday still stood. “We’re confident that there are reasonable folks who understand the value of restarting the negotiations that labor unfortunately pulled out from earlier, and we look forward to talking with them on Friday,” he said.

Republican House Speaker William Batchelder rejected the unions’ suggestion to craft a new law. “That dog won’t hunt,” said Mr. Batchelder, noting that GOP lawmakers offered to negotiate a compromise with unions in June but that effort failed.

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RSLC Chairman Ed Gillespie on “Face the Nation” this Sunday

Be sure to tune in to CBS Face the Nation on Sunday!

From CBS:

Chief White House Correspondent Norah O’Donnell guest hosts this Sunday’s “Face the Nation” with guests Senator John McCain, Economist Mark Zandi and former party chairs, Ed Gillespie of the Republican National Committee and Terry McAuliffe of the Democratic National Committee.

And they’re off! The Republican field for the presidential nomination came into focus in the past week as Texas Governor Rick Perry entered with a splash, wedging himself with Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and Congresswoman Michele Bachmann in the top tier of the race.

But the spotlight has its pitfalls, as Perry has learned quickly – coming under fire for his comments on global warming, creationism, and for attacks on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. He’s also taken on Governor Romney, setting up a choice for Republican voters over who’s best able to create jobs.

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VA AG Says he may run for U.S. Senate

From the Washington Post:

Much of the speculation about Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s political future has focused on whether the Republican who has made a name for himself suing the federal government would run for re-election, or for governor in 2013.

But in an interview with The Washington Post, Cuccinelli said he may run for U.S. Senate in 2014 — possibly setting him up to take on one of Virginia’s most popular politicians, Democrat Mark R. Warner.

And Cuccinelli didn’t hold back on his criticism of the former governor, who many assume has grown a bit restless with the great deliberative body that is the U.S. Senate.

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Olympic Star Carl Lewis Can’t Run… for NJ State Senate


Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno has kicked former Olympic track and field star Carl Lewis off the election ballot — again.

Guadagno, serving in her capacity as secretary of state, refused to certify Lewis as a candidate for state Senate, according to a letter to local county clerks filed in federal court today.

Her reason: a federal appeals court order to keep Lewis on the ballot while a case challenging his candidacy is considered by a judge only applied to the June Democratic primary — which Lewis won uncontested — and not the November general election.

“Although the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ordered Mr. Lewis name to appear on the primary ballot, that order was carefully circumscribed and limited only to the primary ballot — the sole issue before the Third Circuit at the time of its order,” Guadagno wrote.

Lewis attorney William Tambussi today called Guadagno’s decision “brazen” and said he would ask U.S. District Court Judge Noel Hillman to order him back on the ballot. A hearing is scheduled for Friday. “It just disregards everything that’s gone before her and before the voters,” he said.

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Last Round of WI Senate Recalls set for tomorrow


With two Democratic senators facing recall elections Tuesday, and the Democratic Party of Wisconsin still hoping Gov. Scott Walker will face the same threat next year, Wisconsin’s recall battles are far from over.

It’s unclear what effect this past week’s election results will have on Tuesday’s races, when Sens. Jim Holperin, D-Conover, and Robert Wirch, D-Pleasant Prairie, fight for their seats against Republican challengers Kim Simac, a tea party organizer, and Jonathan Steitz, a corporate attorney and political newcomer.

Going into this past week, Republicans controlled the Senate 19-14, so Democrats needed to win at least three seats and hold onto two more this week to take over. Instead they won two, shifting the balance in the Senate to give the GOP a razor-thin 17-16 majority.

Both sides said the election results showed promising signs for this week.

Republicans said GOP wins in four out of the six contests Tuesday showed broad support for their agenda.

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