Well, the Democrats in the House finally caved and capitulated to an unpopular party pushing an unpopular bill - and expanded spying powers at the same time!!! Way to go! The "compromise" essentially gives telco companies retroactive immunity for helping the government spy on American citizens illegally as long as the President says it was legal. Nice "compromise", jackasses. Now our government can really start doing some Stasi style domestic spying. Weeeeeeeeee!!
The vote tally is here. Looking at the tally:
- 105 Democrats have some explaining to do as to why it's okay to take a big old dump on the constitution. There was an illegal domestic spying program on AMERICAN CITIZENS. You just gave amnesty to the companies who helped the executive branch engage in that. A majority of Americans are against that. Your party standardbearer for the Presidency is against that. Yet you 105 caved because you're scared of what the big mean Republicans are going to say about you. Boo. Fucking. Hoo.
- 1 Republican apparently doesn't want to burn the constitution. Good for you, Rep. Johnson (IL).
- 10 Republicans and 3 Democrats (including Visclosky(D-IN01)) didn't bother to vote. That's even more spineless.
- The Indiana delegation was a mixed bag. The Republicans of course voted yes. Fuck constituents' rights. As mentioned, Visclosky didn't bother to vote. Brad Ellsworth (IN-08) and Joe Donnelly (IN-02) are among the Spineless 105. Baron Hill (IN-09) voted 'no' despite being in one of the crackeriest cracker districts in the state so good for him. And Andre Carson (IN-07) passed his first major test (in my eyes) and voted no.
Congratulations AT&T. You just massively broke the law at the behest of our unpopular law breaking President and got away with it! Now lower my cell phone bill since you won't need those lawyer fees.
Fuck I'm pissed.
Alright so I should be sleeping but i want to get these thoughts out before sleep chases them off into crazy Jason dream land.
- Lake county still has more to report, there are a couple precincts left in Marion and Monroe counties as well. FiveThirtyEight is projecting a Hillary win by 0.9% as of the latest update on the thread there. I was thinking 5% and 2-3 delegate win for Hillary so I will be thrilled by this.
- I'm predicting, based on nothing at all, a 1.5%, 1 delegate Hillary win. Maybe 2 delegates depending on how the CDs break down. Again, I'm thrilled with this considering that Obama kicked her ass in North Carolina and the end result is making up the popular vote ground from Pennsylvania and gaining even more ground in the pledged delegates (which, dear CNN, is what is really important)
- CNN needs to quit with the Lake County conspiracy mongering. I learned from a former state election director that Lake County is one of the counties that uses a consolidated county ballot counting system, rather than the precinct-by-precinct system used in most counties (and in Marion county). This, combined with the large number of absentee ballots (11,000+) is causing the late returns. not some anti-Hillary conspiracy.
- Sadly but not surprisingly, David Orentlicher did not win his bid for the nomination in the 7th CD. David O. would have instantly become one of the smartest congressmen in the country and a great progressive voice. I hope he gets back into the political ring soon (maybe run for Mayor if Indianapolis against Mayor Chinatowns in 2011? I would pay an admission fee to see a debate between those two).
- No one seems to be mentioning the insanely close race for the Democratic nominee to take on Governor Mitch "Mitchy Rich" Daniels. Jim Schellinger is the party approved, powers that be candidate. Jill Long Thompson is the 'outsider.' Currently (as of the latest results on wthr.com at 12:56am) Schellinger is up by 609 votes with 4967 of 5230 precincts reporting. So since when is the party approved, Dan Parker/Evan Bayh approved candidate eeking out a potential narrow victory an upset? When your state party chairman is the inept Evan Bayh toadie Dan Parker who can only get Schellinger's name ID up to 50% in the weeks before the election. As much as I hate to agree with Bayh/Parker on anything, I hope Schellinger pulls this off. If I want to vote for a candidate who will pander with ridiculous gas tax holidays and engage in property tax demagoguery I'll vote for a Republican.
- If anything came of tonight's result in Indiana, its that Evan Bayh's endorsement means very little when it comes to Obama vs. Hillary and that he will not get tapped as the VP. If Bayh can only deliver a tiny victory that is essentially a tie, he's not the force among state Democrats that has been assumed by some. I am not shedding any tears over this.
- (as of 99.49% of Marion County precincts reporting) And finally, turnout was insane. 35.32% turnout of all registered voters in Marion County. Unfortunately the Indygov.org website does not list registered voters by party, but the GOP only got 45,667 ballots cast to the Dems' 182,252. Turnout among Democrats HAS to have been well above the 50% of registered voters mark. This is awesome news for November.
- Finally finally, thanks to everyone who came out to Drinking Liberally. We had a really good crowd and it was a great time. Thanks also to Spencer and Dustin, who always treat us great at Spencer's Stadium Tavern (802 S. West Street. Stop in and have a few beers. it's a fantastic place)
- Looks like JLT pulled it out with the same white votes that came in for Hillary from Crown Point and such. As a friend of a friend said: "I blame Crown Point". JLT will get trounced by Daniels. There goes that opportunity. Heckuva job, Dan Parker.
- I still haven't seen the delegate counts out of Indiana. Nothing official anyway. This is what matters, not the popular vote. Will update here when I see it.
- Chris Bowers has the quote of the night:
So, please correct me if I am missing something, but if a shift of 4-5% and two or three delegates in Indiana and North Carolina is enough to end the Democratic nomination, then why didn't anyone frakking tell us that the campaign was so close to ending? Why was there this massive kabuki theater pretending that it was still a close campaign where Clinton had a legitimate chance at winning? Why were Clinton's attacks on Obama repeated again, and again, and again, without anyone mentioning that Clinton was a desperate candidate hanging by a thread who would probably say anything in order to stay afloat?
The reason is simple: the established media was never covering the Democratic nomination campaign. They were, instead, covering some form of kabuki theater where reality is ignored and liberals are ritually gutted on the public stage for the pleasure of elite, rich, white, male pundits who like to pretend they know what is in the mind of the "common man" or some other formulation that is equally rustic, offensive and laughable. That is all that we have been watching since the Wisconsin primary, since the delegates have not improved for Clinton since the Wisconsin primary (and have actually gotten much worse, if you include the supers). If we had been watching something else, then tonight would not be the end of the campaign, because nothing really changed tonight. If this is the end, then the last two and a half months have been a Clinton-fueled fairy tale, which is basically a white-hot lie about the nomination campaign. Puns intended in the previous sentence.
- Kim Brown won a Judge slot due to her name being at the top alphabetically, even though she wasn't a slated candidate and most people don't even pay attention to the judges anyway. Swell.
So the special election for the 7th District here in Indy is heating up and the Star offers a brief q&a over a few major topics with the candidates, Republican State Rep. John Elrod and Democratic City/County Councilman Andre Carson.
What's your position on a withdrawal timetable for Iraq?
• Democrat Andre Carson: I support a responsible redeployment plan to end the war in Iraq and bring our brave men and women home with honor. It is time for the Iraqis to take responsibility for their security, with benchmarks for Iraqi military and political success along with a responsible timeline to bring our troops home.
• Republican Jon Elrod: Like everyone in America, I want our troops home as soon as possible. I do not support an arbitrary timetable. I will listen to the generals on the ground.
Shorter Jon Elrod: "I know my district wants us out asap, but I can't say that and get any Rrepublican votes, so I'll pass the buck to the 'generals on the ground' and not really answer the question"
Carson's answer is alright, but seems to be a bit wishy washyand lots of talk of "timelines" and "benchmarks" which have worked sooo well to this point.
What should we do about illegal immigration?
• Carson: America's immigration system is broken and nothing has been done in Washington to fix it. In Congress, I will fight to secure our borders and make sure the laws on the books are enforced. Employers who break the law must be held accountable. I am against amnesty and believe that consideration of how undocumented immigrants can earn the opportunity to become citizens must include paying a fine, paying all back taxes, and not having an advantage over those who have entered this country legally.
• Elrod: I support enforcing the laws on the books. If the nation needs more labor, the solution is to increase quotas; not amnesty or guest worker bills.
This is the only one where Elrod's answer is far better than Carson's. Carson is the one who sounds like a Republican on this question. Yuck. Elrod's is good, especially the statement that we need to increase quotas for immigration. Don't see many GOP saying that.
What's the best way to get the health care problem solved?
• Carson: In Congress, I will take the lead to create and invest in solutions that would make sure every American has access to affordable, quality health care. This includes ensuring that all children have health care by expanding programs like the State Children's Health Insurance Program, passing a prescription drug plan that truly works for our seniors, and working across the aisle, and with states, to invest in pilot programs to find out what works best to lower costs and increase coverage.
• Elrod: Our third party-payer system has caused the ever-increasing health care costs. The long term solution is to create competition through health savings accounts, non-profit insurers, and public pricing.
Health Savings Accounts are a nice bandaid to help with rising costs for people who already have insurance but does nothing to help people without insurance. non-profit insurers? How will that work without massive support from teh government, and then why not just let the government handle it without the overhead of working with another group? Carson's answer is alot better
although his highlight of a state program when running for a NATIONAL office is a little.. odd. Update: I totally got SCHIP mixed up with the Indiana program called HIP. So i take back that criticism and am no longer finding it odd. Damn acronyms.
What would your economic stimulus plan look like?
• Carson: Between property taxes, gas prices and health care costs, the working families of Indianapolis are not able to keep their heads above water right now. We need to figure out ways to put cash back into the pockets of working Hoosiers. The first thing I will do is to create real tax relief for the middle class, rolling back the Bush tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and companies that send jobs overseas, and putting these savings into tax cuts and rebates for working families. I would also like to see an increased investment in job creation for our state and nation, including a focus on the new energy economy and national security, which would bring good jobs back here to Indianapolis and create long-term stability.
• Elrod: I support a tax cut, paid for with spending cuts, that would lower the business and personal tax rates to below the average European tax rates.
Any points I may have given to Elrod for the immigration answer are taken back threefold here. I love it when Republicans say "cut taxes by cutting spending!!!" without ever saying what sort of spending they would cut so they don't have to follow through except to dupe self-centered voters long enough to get elected **coughcough**gregballard**coughcough**. This line really takes the cake though "lower the business and personal tax rates to below the average European tax rates." What does that even MEAN? Aren't the tax rates of the industrialized European nations already higher than our rates here? Isn't that one of the boogeymen that the GOP has been using forever now - the "ZOMG Europe has crazy taxes those socialists that's what DEMONcrats want! Boogabooga!!!"
As for Carson, overall he sounds like a Moderate Democrat Talking Point Machine. The answers aren't BAD, they just sound over-focus-grouped and bland. This is why I really wanted David Orentlicher to get the nomination instead of the Official Party Hack Approved Andre Carson. This is exactly why I got out of local politics - in the end the peopel that get slated or approved by the party are the people with the most pull among the flacks, hacks and jackasses.
To steal a line from CJ (and of course make it more vulgar, because, well, it's me) Carson sounds like a fucking Perl script. People voting for Andre Carson thinking they are getting Julia Carson 2.0 are going to be sadly mistaken if this q&a is any indication.