The 2018 US Mid-Term Elections

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Count Bobulescu

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#13
If the GOP lose Congress Trump will be impeached.
Insufficient to simply impeach, if you don't also have 67 votes in the Senate.
See: Clinton, William Jefferson. He was impeached by the House, but the Senate failed to convict.
 
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Count Bobulescu

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#14

WILD AND WONDERFUL WEST VIRGINIA ...

-- ALEX ISENSTADT in MOUNT HOPE, W.VA: "Blankenship, predicting victory, thumbs his nose at GOP": "A defiant Don Blankenship on Monday shrugged off President Donald Trump's last-minute plea for Republican primary voters to reject his insurgent Senate candidacy - and flatly predicted it would fail to halt his momentum.

"On the final day of the dramatic West Virginia campaign, the coal baron and ex-prisoner seemed unbothered by the president's foray into the contest, arguing that voters would see through it as the latest ploy in an establishment-led effort aimed at keeping him from winning the nomination.

"'I think it's still over,' he declared to reporters here during a frenzied final day of the race. 'It probably tightens it a point or two, but I don't think it matters much.' At another point in the day, after a reporter asked if he was feeling confident, Blankenship had a deadpan response: 'Yeah, we're gonna win.'" https://politi.co/2whFEvw

-- WHO IS REALLY TO BLAME: "Flake blames Trump for rise of Blankenship in West Virginia," by John Bresnahan: "[A]ccording to Flake, Trump's use of racially charged language and messages during the 2016 race for the White House -and his success in doing so - has inspired other GOP hopefuls to try to do the same, including Blankenship.

"'The problem with normalizing statements and behavior like we've seen over the last couple years leads to this kind of thing,' Flake said. 'If it's still OK to talk about "China people" or whatever else. But that's not too dissimilar a word from some of the language we've heard used successfully.' Flake added: 'When you talk about "Mexican rapists" or a judge who can't judge fairly because of his Mexican heritage. Words have meaning, and this isn't going to be helpful to anyone.'" https://politi.co/2KKVxhi

-- FLASHBACK: "Before the Blankenship-McConnell Feud, the Senator Aided the Mining Executive," by ProPublica's Alec MacGillis: "What has gone overlooked amid this extraordinary clash, is that 18 years ago, both McConnell and Chao effectively sprang to the defense of Blankenship, sparing his company considerable cost and consequences for a disaster that unfolded in their home state of Kentucky in the middle of the night on Oct. 11, 2000." http://bit.ly/2HX8uXy

-- THE OBVIOUS QUESTION HERE is what does Mitch McConnell, the NRSC and the constellation of big-money outside groups that support Senate Republicans do if Blankenship wins. It's very difficult to see McConnell supporting Blankenship after he called the majority leader's wife's family "China people," and suggested the Kentucky Republican has mixed allegiances because of Elaine Chao's family's heritage. But knocking Sen. Joe Manchin out of the Senate has always been part of the GOP plan to keeping -- or expanding -- their majority in the Senate.



As midterm primaries kick into high gear today, here are five signs (all Real Clear Politics averages) that the current headwinds for House Republicans could turn into a throw-out-Members wave:

Be smart: When a party is this badly under water in national sentiment and perception, individual candidates have a hard time distancing or distinguishing themselves.

  • That's why a wave is apparent so early — 182 days before Election Day.
 

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#15

WILD AND WONDERFUL WEST VIRGINIA ...

-- ALEX ISENSTADT in MOUNT HOPE, W.VA: "Blankenship, predicting victory, thumbs his nose at GOP": "A defiant Don Blankenship on Monday shrugged off President Donald Trump's last-minute plea for Republican primary voters to reject his insurgent Senate candidacy - and flatly predicted it would fail to halt his momentum.


We both hope he will win, but of course for different reasons.
 
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Count Bobulescu

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#16
We both hope he will win, but of course for different reasons.
And we were both out of luck..........

From Ballotpedia.....

What happened last night?
Here are a few races we were watching closely:
  • Rep. Robert Pittenger (R) became the first U.S. House incumbent in 2018 to lose in his party’s primary, as he was defeated by challenger Mark Harris in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District.
  • Former state Rep. Mike Braun (R) defeated U.S. Reps. Luke Messer (R-Ind.) and Todd Rokita (R-Ind.) in the Republican primary for the toss-up U.S. Senate seat in Indiana. He will face Joe Donnelly (D) in the general election.
  • Former Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray (D) defeated former Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D) and state Sen. Joseph Schiavoni (D) in Ohio's Democratic gubernatorial primary. Cordray will face Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine (R), who won the Republican nomination, in the general election.
  • State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) defeated coal mining executive Don Blankenship (R) and Rep. Evan Jenkins (R) in for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in West Virginia.
 

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#17
And we were both out of luck..........

From Ballotpedia.....

What happened last night?
Here are a few races we were watching closely:
  • Rep. Robert Pittenger (R) became the first U.S. House incumbent in 2018 to lose in his party’s primary, as he was defeated by challenger Mark Harris in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District.
  • Former state Rep. Mike Braun (R) defeated U.S. Reps. Luke Messer (R-Ind.) and Todd Rokita (R-Ind.) in the Republican primary for the toss-up U.S. Senate seat in Indiana. He will face Joe Donnelly (D) in the general election.
  • Former Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray (D) defeated former Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D) and state Sen. Joseph Schiavoni (D) in Ohio's Democratic gubernatorial primary. Cordray will face Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine (R), who won the Republican nomination, in the general election.
  • State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) defeated coal mining executive Don Blankenship (R) and Rep. Evan Jenkins (R) in for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in West Virginia.
We were, but an extreme outside won in Indiana for the Senate and will surely win in November. So I am still happy aND look forward to checking him out.
 

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#18
A very conservative group who I support, supporTed Morrisey in WV, so I am still happy.
 
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Count Bobulescu

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A very conservative group who I support, supporTed Morrisey in WV, so I am still happy.
I thought you were a Libertarian, not a Conservative.

Don't tell Ron Paul you support conservatives, he's not happy with Spanky pulling out of the Iranian nuke deal.
 

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#20
I thought you were a Libertarian, not a Conservative.

Don't tell Ron Paul you support conservatives, he's not happy with Spanky pulling out of the Iranian nuke deal.
The group that likes him would be Constitutionalist actually but I will check him out later at my leisure
 
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#21
Getting a lot more expensive for the R's to hold on to power.

Wave watch: Dems getting more votes for their money
Data: FEC. Get the data. Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios

One big warning for Republicans in the midterm elections: Democrats got more votes for their money in every competitive special election since President Trump took office, Axios' Alexi McCammond reports:
  • Why it matters: Republicans still won most of the races, but Democrats narrowed the partisan gap in each race by an average of 16 points compared to each district's GOP leanings.
  • The takeaway: In most of the races, Democrats got more votes for their money even in elections they didn't win.
  • Be smart: Republicans should be worried about Democrats' performance, but Democrats need to start winning more of these elections if they want the House back.
  • Go deeper.
Click "reports" for the chart.
 
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#23
Round 2 is tomorrow.......

MAY 15 PRIMARIES PREVIEW
Opposing Democratic Party factions competing in PA-07 primary

Three Democrats representing different ideological wings of the party are running a close race for the Allentown, Pennsylvania, seat once held by Rep. Charlie Dent (R), who resigned in May.
The Northampton County district attorney John Morganelli opposes abortion and sanctuary jurisdictions. He tweeted at president-elect Donald Trump in Nov. 2016 saying he “[hoped] to serve.” Morganelli says he voted for Hillary Clinton and was inquiring about a U.S. attorney job.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) endorsed Pastor Greg Edwards, who supports Medicare for All. Edwards has raised the most money, but said the DCCC tried to force him out of the race. The DCCC denies the allegation.
EMILY’s List endorsed former Allentown Solicitor Susan Wild and has spent over $200,000 backing her candidacy while attacking Morganelli.
Under Pennsylvania’s new congressional map the 7th District more closely resembles Dent’s old 15th District.
Crowded Democratic field in PA-05
Ten Democrats are seeking the party nomination for the redrawn, and much more Democratic, 5th Congressional District.
The top three contenders are progressive activist Richard Lazer, former federal prosecutor Ashley Lunkenheimer, and attorney Mary Gay Scanlon.
While Lunkenheimer and Scanlon have raised the most money, Lazer labor union support, including a $500,000 satellite spending boost from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
Hillary Clinton carried the old District by 2.3 percentage points. The new District went for Clinton by 28.2 percentage points.
Moderate and progressive Democrats clash in Nebraska’s 2nd District
Former 2nd District Rep. Brad Ashford thinks he is the best chance of recapturing the seat from the man who defeated him in 2016, Rep. Don Bacon (R).
GovTrack ranked Ashford as the second-most conservative House Democrat when he served from 2015 to 2017. He was a member of the Blue Dog Coalition.
Nonprofit executive Kara Eastman believes she can win the toss-up seat because of her support for universal health care and tuition-free college. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee and a number of Omaha city officials are supporting her candidacy.
Oregon state Senate primaries feature progressive challenges to long-sitting incumbents
Long-time Oregon state Sens. Peter Courtney and Rod Monroe, who have a combined 62 years of Senate service, face progressive challengers in the May 15 primary.
Joyce Judy is challenging Courtney, who was first elected in 1998. Judy says Courtney has blocked progressive environmental and health care legislation as Senate president and is an opponent of electing the president via a national popular vote.
Monroe, who was first elected in 1976, faces Shemia Fagan and Kayse Jama. Both challengers are focusing on Monroe’s opposition to rent controls and his support for no cause eviction clauses in leases.



In Maryland a leading candidate for Governor died unexpectedly, and now it might cost $3.5M to reprint the 747 different versions of the ballot that are required in Maryland.......

Official: If New Ballots Are Needed Due to Kamenetz's Death, Cost Could Be $3.5 Million

News of Baltimore County Executive Kevin B. Kamenetz’s sudden death last week stunned nearly everyone who heard it, but on a less personal level, it sent the Maryland Democratic machinery reeling, as the hierarchy assessed such an election-altering event little more than six weeks before the primary.

An increasingly large factor in the political fallout on the gubernatorial race is a frequently overlooked section of Maryland election law that could have unexpected and far-reaching consequences for the June 26 primary – including the possibility of reprinting all 747 versions of the ballot, at an estimated cost to taxpayers of $3.5 million, on an extraordinarily tight deadline.

The ultimate outcome, in many ways, lies directly with Kamenetz’s running mate, Valerie L. Ervin, surviving candidate for lieutenant governor, the ticket’s No. 2 position, which cannot stand alone and which many voters consider as an afterthought, if they consider it at all.

State election law places an enormous amount of power in Ervin’s hands, allowing her to decide whether to stay in the race, and if so, whether as a candidate for governor or lieutenant governor. If she decides to stay in the race in either capacity, she and her selection of a new running mate – “the successor candidate” -- would have to file a certificate of candidacy with the state election board no later than Thursday, 40 days before the primary.

Further complicating the matter is that the State Board of Elections last week mailed all the military and overseas absentee ballots -- with the Kamenetz-Ervin pairing on them — in accordance with federal law requiring that they go out by Saturday, 45 days before the election.


Kamenetz, who died at age 60 early Thursday, was interred Friday. The Kamenetz-Ervin campaign temporarily suspended any public discussion of future plans, though it remains acutely aware of the upcoming Thursday deadline.

Ervin, 61, a former Montgomery County Council and school board member, is faced with three options: Withdraw from the race; run as candidate for governor in Kamenetz’s place and select a new lieutenant governor candidate; or select a new candidate for governor to replace Kamenetz and remain as the lieutenant governor candidate on the new ticket.

One consideration in Ervin’s decision to run or not could be that the Kamenetz campaign reportedly already has booked roughly $1 million in television advertising time in advance of the primary.

Linda H. Lamone, Maryland elections administrator, said late Friday she had no plans to have the primary ballots reprinted at this point because she maintains a section of state election law gives her discretion in determining whether there is sufficient time to revise the ballots with the correct names.

And in Lamone’s assessment, there is not enough time to make any change, given the complexity of such an undertaking, the potential for error -- and the fact that the overseas and military ballots already have been mailed out.

“I’m not going to do anything unless ordered by a court to do it,” she said.

In a situation where the ballot is not revised and reprinted, the law requires that the election board notify voters of the change in candidacy, the procedure to be used to record the voter’s vote and the procedure to be used by the board in canvassing the vote.

If Ervin were to withdraw from the race outright, then Lamone said she believed there would be no reason to reprint the ballot because at that point, the candidate would be considered “disqualified,” a distinction addressed by the Court of Appeals in the Oaks case, in which the high court ruled that the name stays on the ballot.

But if Ervin decides to proceed as a candidate with a new running mate, that could be another story.

“She needs to file the paperwork, and we’ll make the determination at that point,” Lamone said.

Reprinting the ballot statewide would cost an estimated $3.5 million, she said.

Election officials have described the tedious and complicated process of proofing, testing and printing 747 configurations of the primary ballot -- each with different candidate listings for the varying combinations of congressional, legislative and local districts, depending on polling place locations statewide.

The question of which section of Maryland election law controls whether the ballot is reprinted or not appears ambiguous on the surface and may ultimately have to be decided by the courts.

Giving the state administrator discretion to determine whether or not to reprint seems to be at odds with another section of the election law that deals specifically with the death of a candidate for governor before the primary election.

Under that section of law, the language seems explicit in describing what happens if Ervin, as the surviving lieutenant governor candidate, decides to press ahead as a candidate with a designated new running mate.

“The names of any governor and lieutenant governor unit that is designated … shall be listed jointly on the primary election ballot,” the law reads.

It goes on to say that if the death of a gubernatorial candidate occurs fewer than 10 days before the primary, the names of the “existing governor and lieutenant governor unit whose filing is complete shall remain on the ballot,” referring to the names of the gubernatorial candidate who died and that of his or her running mate.

While the 10-day rule does not apply in the Kamenetz-Ervin case, the language of the law seems to suggest that if the death or disqualification occurred before that 10-day period – in this case before June 16 -- the names of the deceased gubernatorial candidate and running mate would be removed from the ballot or changed.

At present, the Kamenetz-Ervin team appears fifth out of nine pairings in the listing for governor and lieutenant governor candidates on the Democratic ballot. The teams are listed alphabetically by the gubernatorial candidate’s last name.

If Ervin were to continue running, the ballot order could change, should it be reprinted. If she moved to the top of the ticket, it would change outright because her surname begins with “E”; if she picked another candidate for governor and continued as a candidate for lieutenant governor, placement would be determined by her running mate’s last name.

Historically, the common wisdom has been that names appearing higher on the ballot – determined alphabetically -- are more apt to draw a higher number of votes from undiscriminating voters.
 
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#24
Most notable results from May 15, were in Pa.

The D's need to flip 23 seats nationally in November, to take control of the House.
Pa currently has 18 seats, none of them held by women. Last night 4 D women won primaries in Pa, and are expected to be competitive in November.

Women win big in Pennsylvania primaries
"A state representative, an Air Force veteran and two high-powered lawyers — all women — won Democratic House primaries ... in Pennsylvania, where a record number of women ran for House seats in a year of intense political enthusiasm among female Democrats," the N.Y. Times' Trip Gabriel writes:
  • "It was a night of victories for at least seven Democratic women running for the House in a state that has an all-male congressional delegation of 20 and a Statehouse dominated by male politicians."
  • Why it matters: "Female candidates showed strength in nearly every region of Pennsylvania, from the Philadelphia suburbs to the conservative southwest."