October 8, 2015

Thursday Open Thread

  5:00 am

This is the Open Thread for Thursday.

I wish I were an Oscar Meyer wiener.

This is also a good place for new polls or articles you think might be of interest.


A House Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand

  2:53 pm

Kevin McCarthy of California, House Majority Leader, dropping out of the race for Speaker of the House on the day of the election among the Republican Caucus merits a third FPP on the contest this week. The first two were predicated on the basic math that more than suggested that McCarthy couldn’t get to 218 votes, something absolutely necessary for a Republican to prevail in the election involving the entire chamber .

This basic math was due to intensely strong feelings on the part of those willing to go to the mattresses against the old leadership. While there are 247 Republicans in the House and only 188 Democrats, the fact that there are more than 30 members with those feelings necessitates finding someone outside of the old leadership group to represent the Party.

This problem seemed unsolvable until Jason Chaffetz of Utah threw his hat into the ring, running on the idea that someone with the right disposition, and with superb communication skills, and an established record of working well with both sides is needed to bridge the divide and establish unity.

Having watched the clueless reaction by both Fox and CNN following McCarthy’s decision, it’s safe to say that his election had been assumed to be inevitable, and the brief news flashes of Chaffetz getting into the race had been mere lip service to his announcement.  But it is clear that Jason’s reason for getting in, that the math didn’t add up, was right on target.

Meanwhile, the obvious people to take on the job have all declined to go after it.  Paul Ryan of Wisconsin wants to stay on as head of Ways and Means.  Jeb Hensarling of Texas and Trey Gowdy of South Carolina are going to stay on as head of their respective committees.  No major figure has stepped up or expressed interest as of now.  Daniel Webster of Florida, who was in the race, and who had won the support of the House Freedom Caucus led by Jim Jordan of Ohio, has expressed that he’s not sure if he will stay in  with the majority leader out of it.  He was, by implication, not really running for the job as much as he was standing in opposition to the status quo.

Only Chaffetz, the head of The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, is definitely still in the running,  and he is still campaigning and lining up support.  Unless someone with real stature in the body jumps in, it’s hard to see anyone else coming out of this.  Chaffetz is the logical candidate to gain support from both sides.  If he does, the House will get more combative, and more conservative.

He figured out the math before anyone else and offered a solution to it.



Field Poll: California Primary

  2:46 pm

From Field Poll’s write-up (with full results and methodology):

Three political outsiders with no prior experience in political office are now leading in California among Republicans likely to vote in the state’s June 2016 presidential primary. Businessman Donald Trump, at 17%, and physician Ben Carson, at 15%, and businesswoman Carly Fiorina, at 13%, are besting the crowded field of current and former U.S. Senators and Governors, who collectively receive 42% of the vote. Another 13% are undecided. […]

Despite the fact that Trump has been leading in most nationwide polls for more than two months, relatively few likely Republican voters in this state (28%) think he will eventually become their party’s standard-bearer. Also, when California Republicans are asked what their personal reaction would be should the billionaire businessman win the GOP nomination, greater than four in ten (44%) say they would be either upset or dissatisfied, and 37% are not confident that Trump would be able to defeat the eventual Democratic Party’s nominee.

Calif poll
Sample 214 likely Republican primary voters. Dates: 9/17-10/4. Margin of error: +/-7.

As an aside, if you take a few moments to read the Field Poll’s methodology, it is pretty much the ideal way for polls to be conducted. Unfortunately, it is also expensive, so I doubt that it will be widely adopted (though a few others, such as Seltzer, use similar methods).

H/T: GS.


Rubio Editorial at Hot Air on Eminent Domain

  10:38 am

Marco Rubio wrote an editorial at the, sometimes hostile to him, Hot Air. The editorial is on the use of eminent domain and, his opposition to it. It is clearly directed at Donald Trump without actually stating his name. Here’s an excerpt.

Though it may not make headlines as often as other issues, the fundamental right to private property has been under assault for years through our government’s abuses of eminent domain. Eminent domain is the authority vested in government to force the sale of private property. While this authority can be a necessary evil in rare cases related to public development, such as the building of crucial infrastructure, its modern use far exceeds this limitation. Today, it is often wielded by crony capitalist politicians to benefit wealthy and powerful private developers.

One of my proudest accomplishments as a public servant was leading the effort in Florida to pass both a law and a constitutional amendment to keep private developers from using eminent domain to take property away from private owners. This effort became necessary after the egregiously flawed Kelo v. New London Supreme Court decision made private use of eminent domain legal unless states banned it. In the years since, the legislation I passed in the Florida House has become a model for states across the country.

As a result of these reforms, Florida now has some of the strongest laws in the nation protecting homes, businesses, and even houses of worship from being seized by private developers. This effort earned the state of Florida an “A” grade from the Castle Coalition, which is a nationwide organization established to defend private property from undue seizure.

Read the rest at Hot Air.


October 7, 2015

Poll Watch: Quinnipiac FL/OH/PA

  5:28 pm

Sorry to be late on this, hasn’t been the best of days.

HT: Newbie, GS, ArgoJournal.



Donald Trump 23% (24%)
Ben Carson 17% (13%)
Marco Rubio 12% (10%)
Carly Fiorina 8% (7%)
Ted Cruz 6% (5%)
Chris Christie 5% (2%)
Jeb Bush 4% (6%)
Mike Huckabee 4% (2%)
John Kasich 3% (3%)
All others 2% or below

Sample: 427 registered Republicans.Dates: 9/25 – 105. Margin of error: +/- 4.7. Results from poll dated 8/7-18 are in parentheses.



Donald Trump 23% (21%)
Ben Carson 18% (6%)
John Kasich 13% (27%)
Ted Cruz 11% (7%)
Carly Fiorina 10% (5%)
Marco Rubio 7% (7%)
Jeb Bush 4% (5%)
Rand Paul 3% (2%)
All others 2% or below

Sample: 433 registered Republicans. Dates: 9/25 – 10/5. Margin of error: +/- 4.7.

Donald Trump 28% (21%)
Ben Carson 16% (11%)
Marco Rubio 14% (11%)
Jeb Bush 12% (17%)
Carly Fiorina 7% (7%)
Ted Cruz 6% (7%)
All others 2% or below

Sample: 461 registered Republicans. Dates: 9/25 – October 5. Margin of error: +/- 4.6.

Full results and further detail here.


The Four Questions That Will Decide the Nomination

  4:30 pm

Nate Silver’s 538 currently held a discussion about the Republican quest for the nomination, in which Silver concluded that especially now that Walker’s out of the race, “there aren’t all that many plausible ‘Party Decides’ choices. It’s just Bush, Rubio, and probably Kasich.”

The other major participant in the colloquy, hjenten, responded: “there are other candidates who can win, but I think in most universes, it’s one of those.”

Silver: “I’d say team BRK (Bush-Rubio-Kasich) collectively have a 70 to 75 percent chance…”

The “Party Decides” reference is to the thesis that “early endorsements in the invisible primary are the most important cause of candidate success in the state primaries and caucuses” according to Professor David Karol of the University of Maryland.  In other words, the leadership of the Party will form an ultimate consensus about which candidate they want to represent them in the General Election, and whoever that is will probably be the nominee.  At least that’s the way it’s almost always worked.  Most high-level members of the Party haven’t endorsed yet, but they all have opinions and are weighing the criteria most important to them.

Silver concludes that he thinks Rubio is a better fit for the Party and probably will present a younger, stronger image for the GOP going forward.  His colleague, commenting about Jeb’s name ID asks “Can most people pick out Jeb vs. George?  Then goes on to comment that “Bush is just starting to use that war chest.  He’s got lots of money.  That’s not an awful position to be in.”

But they are in total agreement that the nomination will probably go to Marco or Jeb.  Which will win will be dependent on the answers to these four questions:

  1.  Can Rubio withstand the spotlight?

  2.  Is Rubio too conservative to win the nomination?  (By our three-pronged metric he would be more  conservative than any Republican nominee since Barry Goldwater.)

  3.  How much of an advantage does Bush’s money give him.?

  4.  And, lastly, does Bush begin to look more attractive to Party officials as people tune in?

Silver concludes:   “IDK the answers to these questions.”

Neither do I, but if someone wants to conjecture or has any thoughts on the subject, this is your chance to opine.

hat tip:  GS


Draft Biden Ad: My Redemption

  9:52 am

It’s official – the Draft Biden movement is in motion and has the above ad going up soon trying to convince Biden to run.

Discuss the ad below and how you think a Biden candidacy would shake up the Democratic primary.


Wednesday Open Thread

  5:00 am

This is the Open Thread for Wednesday.

This is the city, Los Angeles, California. I work here. I’m a cop.

This is also a good place for new polls or articles you think might be of interest.


October 6, 2015

Republicans versus Clinton

  5:03 pm

The graph below is based on data from this page at the Pollster site. Please note that some match-ups are based on relatively few data points.
v clinton octI was going to do some analysis here, but I think the trend lines are clear, and I’d just be pointing out the obvious.


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