Friday, October 4 2002
AD: If you haven't see it, you
should. I'm outraged by a lot of things Democrats do, but
this doesn't strike me as one of them. Yes, the message patently
distorts Bush's plan on Social Security. But aside from the pesky
little issue of telling the truth, I thought the ad was kind of
funny. If the ad's truthfulness can be challenged - and given
the fact it uses The American Prospect as source material the
odds are pretty good - then maybe it should be pulled. Beyond
that, however, it's hard to see how this silly little cartoon
is going to help the Dems. Maybe Republicans should respond by
creating their own cartoon showing Gore, Bonior and McDermott
leading a hippie peace rally against the war. Imagine the howls
of indignation that would create.
A BAD IDEA: Okay, so Mitt Romney is in a tough race. He's
losing among women to Democrat Shannon O'Brien. But putting
a quota on the number of women he'll have in his administration
is a blatant pander, a terrible idea, and an unprincipled position.
Why couldn't Mitt convey his sincerity by making a pledge to search
far and wide to find the brightest, most talented women in the
state to become part of a Romney administration? - TB 4:39 pm
Thursday, October 3 2002
FRAUD: Corporate fraud is back
in the headlines today with charges against former Enron executive
Andrew Fastow. Democrats are certainly hoping the issue stays
on the front page and can be revived as a weapon against Republicans
But for months
I've been wondering and worrying about another type of fraud that
merits serious attention: vote fraud. With so many close races
and so much at stake, the temptation - not to mention the potential
ramifications - of vote fraud is considerable.
Let me stipulate
here that I'm not talking about the traditional, inherent flaws
in our system (confusing ballots, overvotes, etc) that accompany
every election. What happened in Florida in 2000 was not "vote
fraud," but rather a lesson in how our election process can
breakdown through a combination of sloppy management and human
election reform bills passed by both the House and Senate (currently
mired in committee) seek to remedy these problems, though no amount
of money or legislation will ever be able to totally eliminate
me, however, are coordinated efforts to manipulate the electoral
process like the ones that took place in Missouri
in 2000 where "substantial and credible" evidence of
vote fraud was found by the Secretary of State's office. Further
shenanigans were reported in the closely decided states of Wisconsin
and New Mexico.
at the critical races this year, where control of the Senate in
particular may be decided by just a handful of votes in three
or four states, I'm wondering if sufficient preparations are being
made to ensure vote fraud doesn't occur. It seems unlikely, yet
possible, for fraud to be a significant factor in a sparsely populated
state like South Dakota. But in places like Minnesota, Missouri
and now even New Jersey, incidents of fraud could potentially
prove decisive. - TB 5:16 pm
WAY IS THE WIND BLOWING?: It's tough to get a read on where
this election is heading. Will it break for Republicans on the
war issue, or will Democrats profit from a weak economy? In Roll
Call this morning, Mort
Kondracke says the recent Generic
Congressional Polls suggest the Dems could win in November.
But on the following page his colleague Stu
Rothenberg says it will take the political equivalent of an
"inside straight" for the Dems to take back the House.
Fineman thinks the Dems' hopes are unraveling and recent articles
in the Washington
Times and New
York Times indicate the Dems are struggling. - TB 9:20 am
UPDATE: Associated Press story: "Political
Forecasters Get Confused"
Wednesday, October 2 2002
VERDICT IS IN: You just knew
it was coming. For the second time in two years, Democrats
have used the court system to overturn existing law in their favor.
In Florida, it was after the election was over. This time, the
rules are changing before the election has even been held, allowing
a critically damaged candidate to avoid being held to account
by the public. It's outrageous, but hardly surprising. Republicans
are in the process of filing an appeal with the Justice Department
and trying to move the matter before the US Supreme Court. It
looks as if this is far from over. - TB 6:20 pm
IS ABOUT TAKING CONTROL":
These are the words of Frank
Lautenberg, the Dems' new candidate for the US Senate from
New Jersey - provided he can get on the ballot. Let's give the
Democrats credit for being honest in their effort to subvert democracy.
Torricelli, who could have claimed any number of bogus reasons
for exiting the race, stood up before the world and said he is
leaving because he could not win. Democrat party lawyers
held a press conference yesterday and didn't even attempt to make
a nuanced legal argument, instead urging the state Supreme Court
to ignore "technical niceties" and "administrative
requirements" otherwise known as New Jersey state law. -
Tuesday October 1, 2002
Have you heard the latest news? Mike Taylor is getting his ass
kicked in Montana by Max Baucus and it looks like Marc Racicot
is going to resign as RNC Chair and jump into the race against
him. The GOP holds every elected office in the state, so it shouldn't
be a problem getting him on the ballot regardless of what the
law says. And in California, GOP officials have filed a motion
with the state Supreme Court to dump Simon and replace him with
the more moderate, electable Dick Riordan. Lastly, the NRSC is
carefully watching the Senate contest in Arkansas but Chairman
Frist says the race isn't so hopeless that they need to replace
incumbent Senator Tim Hutchinson just yet. - TB 6:13 pm
YORK TIMES ON TORRICELLI: "The
Democrats, led by Gov. James McGreevey, must move quickly to find
a credible replacement. The courts must then expeditiously approve
the ballot substitution, which in turn will clear the way for
an energetic one-month campaign that, with Senator Torricelli
out of the picture, can focus tightly on loftier issues than his
seamy behavior.......The Democrats, for their part, are left to
grapple with their own failure both to protect voters from this
fiasco by facing up to Mr. Torricelli's brazen conduct and to
intervene much earlier to find a better candidate."
So that's it, a couple days of "grappling"and you're
allowed to steal elections. No questions about what is legal,
not to mention morally right. "The
courts must then expeditiously approve the ballot substitution"
Why? Isn't there an issue concerning what is legal, or do they
even care? This is Florida all over again. The ends justify the
means. Forget the rules, forget the deadlines, forget the fundamental
pillar, "the rule of law," that makes democracy work.
The bottom line to the liberal Politburo that runs the Times'
is Torricelli was going to lose, so if they can get away with
jamming a better candidate at the 11th hour, they're all for it.
JM 2:39 PM
OF TWO DESPERATE CANDIDATES: Losing a campaign will make you
do funny things. Look at Bill Simon. On the same day the LA Times
a new poll showing the ethically challenged (that's the PC
term for bought-and-sold) Gray Davis leading the race by 10 points,
Francisco Chronicle reports that Simon is going up with a
new "mea culpa" ad claiming he's "not perfect."
I guess since nothing else has worked and voters hate both candidates,
Simon believes he can win the race by being the most repentant.
Meanwhile, over in Illinois, Jim Ryan is attempting to revitalize
his flagging campaign by targeting
the pity vote. In new ads that started yesterday, Ryan is
shown in a wheelchair after chemo treatments for lymphoma while
a voice over talks about the "challenges" he has faced
in his life. I'm not sure how this will help create jobs or improve
security for the citizens of Illinois, but when you're out of
arrows you start throwing rocks. - TB 10:31 am
Monday September 30, 2002
THREAT' : The antiwar crowd continues to cling
to the premise that an "immediate threat" is a necessary
requirement for American action in Iraq. And while it is a grim
realization, some Democrats, most Republicans, and a majority
of the American people have concluded that the threshold of an
"immediate threat" as a precursor to action was blown
away along with the lives and steel of the World Trade Center
towers on September 11.
Everyone agrees that Saddam Hussein is a despicable man; a ruthless
tyrant capable of evil acts. Furthermore, there is near universal
agreement that Saddam is more dangerous now than he was four years
ago when UN inspectors were expelled from Iraq. Yet when the question
is posed about how to effectively deal with this growing danger
if Hussein fails to allow unfettered inspections and the disarming
of his chemical and biological weaponry, the antiwar left avoids
making hard choices, dismissing the threat as not "immediate."
Given recent history, such thinking is intellectually sloppy,
if not immoral. It's akin to saying "Yes, you have a malignant
tumor in your body. It's growing and slowly becoming more dangerous,
but you should ignore it until it poses an 'immediate threat'
to your life."
War is not inevitable. But war is a logical result of Saddam's
defiant pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and of the growing
nexus with Islamic terrorist intent upon America's destruction.
- TB 9:00pm
BOB : Has anyone ever given a more sanctimonious speech announcing
the involuntary end of their political career? "I built women's
shelters" and "I created hospitals" and "I'm
doing this for the people of New Jersey." Ugh. Torricelli
waxed poetic about the giants of the Senate and then his own service,
implying that he somehow ranks right up there with Humphreys and
the Fulbrights. Hey Bob, here's a reality check: you're a first-termer
who's being forced from seeking reelection because you got caught
lining your pockets. "When did we become such an unforgiving
people?" About the time you started breaking the law. - TB
SNUFFED OUT: Kicking Torricelli aside is a smart
move by the Democrats. They simply cannot afford to lose the
New Jersey seat and still have a chance of maintaining control
of the Senate. In the next day or two we'll be getting a better
idea of how
much damage Harkin has inflicted on himself, and how close
he is to jeopardizing another Democratic seat.
LOVE DRUDGE: Drudge has a link to the text
of Barbra Streisand's remarks at a Democrat "gala"
over the weekend. The most striking thing to me about the speech
is that it reads just like a Maureen
Dowd column. They're both ridiculous, of course, but one took
place at a hyper-partisan fundraiser and the other appeared (and
continues to appear two times every week) in the "paper of
record." Go figure.
IMITATES RCP: I swear I had no advance knowledge of
this. - TB 2:01pm