Friday, September 30, 2011

An early look at 2012 Senate Races

I've been watching the 2012 Senate shape up since November of last year.  I'm a geek about this stuff I know.  I have a dry erase board with all the races color coded Red-Blue and Green, with assessments of assorted races.  Ranked by which will switch from Dem ->Rep.

In order for the GOP to take control of the US Senate they only need 3 or 4 seats minimum, (Depending upon the Pres. result), and up to 13 to have a filibuster proof control of the Senate.  I read Chris Cilizza, and Larry Sabato, and several assorted people who really dig into these races.  And I follow RCP Polls to gather Poll results and trends. A few of their writers Sean Trende and Jay Cost are great analysts. Dick Morris is also entertaining, albeit a little optimistic sometimes.  The Dems are defending 23, seats the GOP only 10.

As of right now I see 11 races that are switchable, including the Scott Brown, MA race as the only GOP possible loss. Update 12/29 Brown is polling 6 points behind, but he came from 30+points behind in just a few weeks in the special election last year.  (We are a year away and much can change).  Also considering Mitt is the likely GOP candidate that will help Brown on the down ballot.

North Dakota   This is a shoe-in.
Nebraska          Ben Nelson and The Cornhusker Kick-Back are going down. Update 12/29  Nelson is      retiring and this seat is now almost certainly a GOP pick-up
Missouri           Claire McCaskill is a great Dem. Senator but she is still gonna lose.  The Missouri comp.
Virginia             No more Macaca..George Allen is taking this seat back that he barely lost.  Tim Kaine     will make it interesting though.
Montana            John Testor just barely won this in 2006, he will have a difficult time holding on in 2012, with new TEA Party momentum.
Wisconsin         Herb Kohl's retirement should make this a slight GOP favorite depending on the candidate.
New Mexico      Open Seat..should be winnable by Heather Wilson over Dem's Heinrich or Balderas.
Ohio                  Sherrod Brown will not go away easily, but what I have learned about Josh Mandl should be a good race.
Florida               Bill Nelson will be a tough race for the GOP to pick up but still in range.
Michigan            Debbie Stabenow will be tough to defeat as well. But if Pete Hoekstra is the Candidate and Mitt Romney is the GOP Nominee..she will be in trouble.

So If the GOP runs the table on the above Dem held seats the pick up is only 10.  In order to get to 13 lets look at the rest of the Dem held seats, that are remotely possible:
CA: Feinstein      Highly unlikely
CT: Open seat     Slim Chance,  Linda McMahon is in and so is Chris Shays..With Romney on top possible pick up.   
DE: Carper          Highly unlikely
HI: Case              Highly unlikely, Best chance is if Former Gov. Linda Lingle runs. Update Lingle is running so there is some hope on this one.
MD: Cardin         Highly unlikely.
MN: Klobuchar    Some Chance.  If Michelle Bachmann had jumped into this race the day she won the Iowa Straw Poll, this would've been hers for the taking. A Tim Pawlenty run would also be formidable!
NJ: Menendez       No Chance..So far I don't even know if he has a challenger.
NY: Gillibrand      No Chance
PA: Casey            Some Chance, but if Rick Santorum got in this race, it'd be 50/50.
RI: Whitehouse     Highly unlikely.
VT: Sanders         Slim Chance.  I need to learn a bit more about Tom Salmon.
WA: Cantwell       Slim Chance.  Wait to see how the GOP Primary turns out to get a gauge.
WV: Manchin       Possible.  Shelly Caputo Moore is a well known candidate in WV, in a perfect storm this state could fall.  But Joe Manchin is the most Conservative Dem on this list, he could even switch parties after the election if he somehow was the 60th vote.

So As I see it maybe 10 pick ups which would be huge!! But it still wouldn't be 13.  The class of 2014 might be so intimated that a few party switches could happen, like in 1994.   AK, AR, CO, LA, NM, VA, NC Senators could be trembling, and might at least consider voting to repeal Obama-Care if it is still required by then.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Watch the Money and the Polls next week.

Next week Mitt Romney will no doubt lead the field in cash raised.  These past 10 days have been rough for Rick Perry.   2 lousy debate performances and just at the end of the first reporting period that Perry is involved in.  I expect Romney could out fund raise Perry 2-1.  Romney is gathering lot's of support from Obama's Wall Street donors of 2008.  While, as of today, Perry is leading in the National Polls on RCP by about 6% over Romney.  New polls in the past few days from Ohio, Penn, Iowa and Florida are coming out from PPP Polling are showing Romney ahead of Perry by 4-6%.  By next week when the $$$ Race numbers are released I presume Romney will return to his front-runner status.  Perry will drop to second and perhaps even third.  Cain seems to have absorbed Michele Bachmann's voters. Huntsman and Johnson seem stuck in the basement.  Gingrich and Santorum are moving upwards slightly and Ron Paul has 11% of the electorate. I think after the cash reporting Johnson, Gingrich, and perhaps even Bachmann will drop out.  I could be wrong for one exceptional reason..Debate performances are essentially free, show up and get a hotel room and your in the debate.  Lot's of exposure for very little money.

Update 10/17  Romney took second in the cash raising race. Perry out-raised by a little, but most of those funds were right out of the gate when he jumped in.  As he got closer to the  filing deadline I suspect his donations had dropped significantly, at the same time Cain was picking up big donations in the last week to ten days. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Is it already a one man race? Maybe.

I have been making predictions on the 2012 campaign since Feb of this year. February Predictions Most of the scenario I put forward has come to pass, just as I predicted.  In my original posting I mentioned the possibility that Rick Perry could jump in the race and it could mess up my scenario, I suggested a Perry run was 50/50. As it happened, he did get in the race and launched to the top of the polls.  Many Conservatives and TEA Party folks were waiting for the "Great White Hope"..and they believed Perry was it.  I have cautiously watched and waited while the Perry campaign, the media rectal exam, and the critics to have their way with him. Perry has handled his new fame pretty well until the last 2 debates.  His "Front-runner" status gave him front and center placement at the last two debates and he was therefore the target of everyone else.  He teetered a bit in the MSNBC debate, and fumbled in last nights Fox/ Google debate.   Now I am not new to watching debates or campaigns and he can certainly come back from this and regain his status.  But I do think next weeks polls will show a continued strength for Mitt Romney.  In Yesterdays Rasmussen poll Romney had pulled to within 4 points (28-24%), a dramatic upswing form a month earlier (29-18).  Also Raz Reports include LIKELY voters and a large sample size of 1000 polled.  This is a huge correction to the initial Perry euphoria after the Iowa Straw Poll.   (BTW my suggestion to Michelle Bachmans campaign to get out the day after and run for Senate was spot on..if I do say so myself!).

Romney has had 5 years to get ready for this race..he has been steady this year and not panicked by the flavor of the month.  I think most everyone believes Palin is not running..she's gonna try to run the attention clock thru October.  We still don't know the dates of the Iowa Caucus, but at the moment I don't think Bachmann will win it. Iowa could even be won by Ron Paul, Romney or Perry. In fact I think Perry must beat Romney in Iowa to stay in the race, neither must be first but Perry will need this win over Romney.  NH the following week Perry is running 4th in single digits. SC and Nevada are next Romney should win NV again this time around, and take 2nd in SC, (assuming Perry does well in Iowa, if Mitt wins IA the race is over in SC).  The next week is Michigan where Romney will win handily, and then it's Florida and Mitt actually fits the GOP voter better than Perry the Southerner.  Jay Cost did a nice analysis of the Southern states, and Florida is NOT a southern state 70% of the people in Florida are not born there! Morning Jay Cost.

The decisions of who will be the 2012 candidate is being made right now.  The money is still flowing quietly to Romney, pol's are being careful to not alienate Romney..if you watch or listen to Rush and Hannity they are being VERY careful..  When it was Buchanan or McCain they were much more willing to comment positively or negatively in one direction or the other..in fact some believe Rush's tacit support of Buchanan may have cost GHW Bush the election in 1992, as much as Ross Perot did. 

So I might be jumping the gun a little bit here, but since I'm in the prediction business..I'm gonna suggest Romney regains the lead in the polls within 2-3 weeks. and possibly even as soon as next week.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Evolution of First Friday

7 years ago a group of merchants in Downtown created First Fridays, modeling it after similar events in small communities around the country.  It has been a success beyond belief!  So why would a group of those merchants want to end it?  Because too many people are having fun and .......DRINKING...Yep that is the PROBLEM!  According to these Tea-totaling nannies.   It's now a new "plan" to "control" it.  I and others have been fighting to keep it an open, free, easy going affair for all of the years I have been downtown. Every year, 3 or 4 voices complain about exactly the same thing with no new arguments.  Rather than make our meeting an exciting creative planning session for the upcoming year, we instead spend 60% of the meeting discussing the same old business.  The fact is the solution to these complainers has been reached by each business exercising individual liberty and controlling the situation at their own doorways.  But for 3 people that's not enough..until they can control, manipulate and otherwise Nanny the rest of us and our guests to death, they will not relent.   Many previous attendees of these meeting have stopped attending rather than listen to this incessant nagging.  I still show up but each year I am finding myself arguing the points alone. It reminds me of when I was married..an issue bubbles up, and I compromise;  6 months later the same issue and I'm expected to compromise again until I'm a hen pecked cowering husband doing whatever I'm told to do, to avoid conflict. Sorry WRONG GUY!!  Also I'm right on this and I'm not gonna cave even if I have to be the only one who speaks up. Don't worry it looks like we are safe to have fun for another year!!

Here are the facts the city knows it, the mayor knows it, DRC knows it and most of the downtown shop owners know it's true:   The Taverns, Restaurants, and Clubs ( TRC), Pay more taxes, employ more people, provide more wealth and value to our city, than all of the merchants, lawyers, banks etc. combined!!  I am hoping more businesses will join our district in the future once the economy turns a bit, but I don't expect it until late 2012 early 2013. West Racine, Uptown, State St. Douglas Ave and even the Mall would like to have what we have on First Friday.   Stop complaining!!

I have kept this discussion out of the public for 5 years now.I decided the best way to deal with it is to let the light shine on the problem and let's get back to having fun!!

BTW to my Lefty Neighbors...Look around at the crowds on First Fridays.  Mostly white 35-70 years old, middle to upper income folks and homeowners, most do not live in the urban part of the city, but rather from around the city..  Guess what those "Customers" are REPUBLICANS not Dems.  Stop throwing cold water on their party!  These are the customers you have products in your store to sell to!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Minister of Chaos...Miles Kirstan the face of the Unionistas.

Miles Kirstan makes the news again.  This time for pouring beer on the head of Rep. Robin Vos.  Unfortunately Miles didn't dump this beer the Sunday or Monday before the first round of recalls.  Imagine the effect his boorish behavior would've had on those swing voters in the recalls.  Mr. Miles is notorious for his bad behavior.  His Mommy and Step-dad are Govt. Union UW Parkside employees who love urging Miles to do the dirty work for those "Professors" who are too good for such behavior.  Even Root River Siren has been willing to throw Miles under the bus.  Here's another example of Washington State Longshoreman demonstrating the thuggish behavior the Unionista's are notorious for.  Jimmy Hoffa Sr. and Jr. Richard Trumpka, CJ Terrell, Seg-Way boy, and of course Racine's own version of Bill Ayers..Miles Kirstan.  Longshoreman Thugs.  CJ Terrell and Miles Kristan showing how tolerant they are...

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

NY 9 and Perry's first "peak"?

Yesterday the GOP won a seat in New York 9 for the first time in over 80 years.  This seat was held by Anthony Weiner..the Pit Bull/ Weiner dog of the Democratic Congress for the past 6-10 years.  This same seat previously held by Chukie Schumer!  This district is very Jewish, Very Democratic 3-1 over GOP registrants, and the GOP Turner won the race by 8 points 54-46. Amazing!! This district will be drawn out of existence in Jan 2013, but It's a bell weather of what the Dems and the Jewish voters are thinking across the country.  Jewish voters make up only about 3% of the electorate and mostly are in safe Dem States, NJ, NY MI with a sizable presence in Florida which is "swingy".  If Obama is losing FLA and Michigan is in play he is in serious trouble!!  Reports of California discontent was reported in polls today as well.  Obama is facing a LANDSLIDE in 2012..and I think he knows it.  That's why he is spending all of his precious moments living the high life at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.