The Race Never Takes A Holiday

It looks like there is no rest for the GOP candidates.  Over the weekend Americans for Prosperity will host its Defending the American Dream Summit.  Potential candidates including  Senators Rafi Cruz and Marco Rubio will be there to speak.  Attendees will also get to hear the Ricker and and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. 

This mini-CPAC will also feature speakers like Michelle Malkin and Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI).  Don’t know if there will be a straw poll. 

As we get video we will post it tomorrow.  Unlike the GOP candidates I can take today off. 

Do Conventions Matter Part 1

This week is the one year anniversary of the 2012 GOP Convention.  Of course it will be remembered for Clint Eastwood‘s speech on the convention’s final night.

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Last convention with mystery.

Lackluster events like the 2012 GOP Convention raise the question if political conventions even matter anymore.  Given that ratings for political conventions have been declining for years  some may say conventions don’t matter at all.

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No one talking to chairs.

So do political conventions matter in this age of several hundred channels and the unlimited variety of the internet?

Conventions are certainly not like they were in the past.

Before the modern primary system was implemented conventions were where the party nominee was actually picked.  So prior to the convention starting it was not certain who the nominee might be.  That in and of itself makes for more drama than a situation where the nominee is locked up months before hand.

However, even though the rules have changed some of us feel conventions still have a very important role to play in any Presidential election.  Stay tuned for more…

Yes, This Happened 365 Days Ago

No, you weren’t on acid.  Yes, the man who directed Unforgiven and starred in Dirty Harry actually did this:

Clint Eastwood spoke to an empty chair on live television.

Just think about that for a minute.  What makes this moment really horrible, beyond embarrassing a movie legend,  is that it was all people talked about the next day.

What could they have been talking about instead?  Oh, I don’t know, maybe the nominees’ acceptance speech.  You know what three day informercial was supposed to be ALL ABOUT.  Any bounce in the polls Romney may have received from his convention speech (which he had worked to get to since about 2006) was eaten into by this moment.

Some question whether political conventions are important anymore, moments like this show why they can have a very bad impact on a campaign.

With Friends Like That…

America’s top ally is the United Kingdom.  The so-called “Special Relationship” has linked our countries for decades.  Tony Blair’s support for the Iraq war was an extreme example of this.

So if the UK isn’t going along with a potential U.S. strike on Syria that shows a lack of support for it.  You can bet Rand Paul and Ted Cruz will be hitting that message hard as they work to build support.

Only thing that surprises me is that no Democratic candidates for 2016 are out there trying to build support on that same message.

Culture War Summer Reunion Tour – the IRS Gigs

Like any reunion tour eventual it must end and with Labor Day being the unofficial end of summer now is probably the last big gig.  If that is the case we are really going out with a bang.

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Some tours never end

Today the U.S. Treasury ruled that legally married gay couples will be treated as married for federal tax purposes.  This will affect how couples will be treated in terms of all federal taxes, including income taxes, estate and gift taxes, health insurance, retirement accounts and employee benefits.

This is sure to be greeted with jubilation about the Human Rights Campaign and utter contempt by the religious right.  It does show how things really are moving in the Culture War.

Social issues that were once used as wedges by conservative candidates (it was only 9 years ago conservatives used gay marriage bans on the ballot in states to drive up evangelical turnout that would help re-elect Bush) against Democrats are now turning out to turn the GOP more in many areas.  If you don’t believe me ask yourself why isn’t Ken Cuccinelli doing better in the voter rich suburbs of Fairfax county.

Looking to 2016 will the GOP run a Presidential candidate who is in favor banning gay marriage where it already is or overturning this IRS ruling?  Who knows, answers to that question are what the 2016 race are all about.

While Culture War Reunion Tour seems to be winding down you for the summer, you can bet much like the Rolling Stones, Steve Miller Band, The Who, Pink Floyd, Van Halen, or the Grateful Dead the next reunion tour is just around the corner.

Governor’s Will Tell the Story of 2014

As was mentioned in an earlier post the real action in the 2014 election will be in the Governor’s races.  In the wake of the Tea Party wave of 2010 the GOP found itself with many new chief executives at the state level.  One of the biggest states to flip was Pennsylvania.

Well, it looks like it might flip again.  New polling shows only one-in-five registered voters think Governor Corbett should have a second term.  Just 22 percent of independents want him re-elected.  If numbers like these hold up Corbett would be annihilated in the general election.  Of course, he may not survive a primary if his defeat seems so obvious.

Keep an eye on Pennsylvania.  It could be a bright spot for the Democrats in November 2014.

 

Man Does Not Live on Politics Alone – College Football Predictions

Tonight the college football season starts.  It is the final year of the BCS before we head into the brave new world of a playoff system.  Here are some predictions.  Consider this a license to print money:

SEC Champion – South Carolina.  That’s right the Ol’ Ball Coach leads the Gamecocks to the promised land.

PAC 10 title – Stanford.  Just have a leaving Oregon will take a step back, UCLA just aren’t there yet and USC is better than last year (not saying much) but too many questions at QB.

Big 10 – Ohio State.  Urban Meyer probably hasn’t slept since February so his hard sacrifice will pay off.

The rest of the conferences I don’t enough about to say.  Although UMASS football will win three games, if you care.

National Champion – Ohio State over Stanford.  The SEC’s dominance ends and the national title finally leaves the state of Alabama after 4 years.