Archive for the ‘DCCC’ Category
Though recent polling shows Michele Bachmann with a solid lead, the DCCC has decided to assist Jim Graves:
Buoyed by internal polling that shows hotel magnate Jim Graves within striking distance of tea party favorite Michele Bachmann, House Democratic leaders are set to pump resources into the race to help the Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidate knock the three-term incumbent off her perch.
The DCCC’s definition of “within striking distance” is interesting:
Israel cited internal poll numbers from Graves’ campaign showing he trails Bachmann, a former presidential candidate, by just two percentage points. The poll also shows Bachmann with a 57 percent unfavorable rating and a 20-point swing against her among independent voters.
“Voters are experiencing buyer’s remorse with Congresswoman Bachmann and her relentless desire to put ideology over solutions,” Israel said.
A KSTP-TV poll released Monday suggests Graves still has some ground to make up between now and Nov. 6. The poll conducted Oct. 9-11 of 598 likely voters shows Bachmann up 50 percent to 41 percent, with 9 percent undecided. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.1 percent.
Graves has talked endlessly about being competitive. The KSTP-SurveyUSA poll shows what’s reality. When Graves attended a fundraiser hosted by Barney Frank, he lost 2-4 points in the polling. That’s because people know that Frank is the man who brought the housing market to its knees.
The KSTP-SurveyUSA poll is an extremely reliable poll. In 2010, their final polling showed Tim Walz with a 9 point lead and Jim Oberstar with a tiny 1 point lead. Walz won by 9 and Oberstar lost by 4,000 votes. In 2006, they predicted a 9 point victory for Rep. Bachmann. Michele won 50-41 against Patty Wetterling.
Let’s dispel some myths about the internal polling. First off, the 57% disapproval rating for Michele is utter myth. Thanks to redistricting, the district is more conservative this time than 2010, when Michele won with 53% of the vote. Michele’s supporters are just as committed today as they were in 2010.
For the 57% figure to be true, Michele’s approval would have had to drop 10-12 points in 2 years. That’s BS. The business community is just as solidly behind her this time as they were 2 years ago. She’s still the TEA Party’s darling. Those two groups comprised 90+ percent of Michele’s support.
Second, independents aren’t as big in the Sixth as in other districts. A 20-point swing of independents isn’t as big a swing of actual votes as it would be in the Third, Seventh or Eighth.
Rep. Steve Israel, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, announced Monday the DCCC has elevated Graves’ campaign to its “Red-to-Blue” program, which targets the most highly competitive challenges to Republican-held seats.
That’s pure spin from Rep. Israel. A 9-point Bachmann lead isn’t competitive, especially when she’s reached the magical 50% mark. In 2010, Michele campaigned hard in the district. This year, she’s campaigning harder this time around.
Just like President Obama doesn’t want this election to be about his failed economic policies, it’s clear that the DCCC doesn’t want this election to be about their votes on President Obama’s failed policies.
That’s why they’ve sunk to this:
CONTACT: Jennifer Crider & Jesse Ferguson (202) 485-3440
Foreign Chinese prostitution money is allegedly behind the groups funding Congressman Sean Duffy’s (WI-07) Republican Majority.
The Associated Press reported that Sheldon Adelson, the single largest donor to Congressman Sean Duffy’s House Republicans, allegedly “personally approved of prostitution and knew of other improper activity at his company’s properties in the Chinese enclave” of Macau, China. Recently, Senator John McCain said that Adelson is “injecting millions of dollars in Chinese ‘foreign money’” by contributing to Republican campaigns.
“What will Congressman Sean Duffy do when his Chinese prostitution money comes from billionaire Sheldon Adelson?” said Jesse Ferguson of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “House Republicans like Congressman Duffy are fighting tirelessly to protect billionaires like Sheldon Adelson who make fortunes overseas and Adelson is now the largest single donor to Congressman Duffy’s Republican Majority. It’s past time for Congressman Duffy to reject the support of these groups funded by foreign money from a Chinese prostitution strategy.”
Billionaire Adelson has given $5 million to Speaker Boehner’s Congressional Leadership Fund Super PAC, pledged $5 million to Leader Cantor’s Young Guns Network Super PAC, given $70,800 to the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), and has committed at least $20 million into Karl Rove’s American Crossroads. Earlier this year, ABC News found that Adelson’s company “has been under criminal investigation for the last year by the Department of Justice and the Securities Exchange Commission for alleged bribery of foreign officials.”
The Las Vegas Sun is reporting that Sheldon Adelson isn’t turning the other cheek this time:
In a scathing letter to the [DCCC], Sheldon Adelson’s lawyer accused the organization of “maliciously branding Mr. Adelson as a pimp” and demanded the DCCC either retract and apologize or be sued.
The three-page missive to DCCC press secretary Jesse Ferguson refers to a claim already rated “Pants on Fire” by PoitiFact because it is a claim made in a lawsuit against the Las Vegas Sands chairman, who is dominating the headlines this cycle with his SuperPAC donations. The letter demands the claim be scrubbed from the DCCC site as well as an apology, “a prominent statement, in a form approved by Mr. Adelson, retracting and apologizing for your false claims.”
This might change the subject from the economy but it isn’t the type of distraction that’ll help the DCCC. It’s the type of thing that’ll tell people that the DCCC won’t hesitate in defaming people in their effort to win control of the House.
Mr. Adelson has more than enough money to hire a legal team to totally bury the DCCC if that’s what he chooses. If the DCCC doesn’t publicly apologize for these dishonest, disgusting statements, he’ll file the lawsuit against the DCCC.
Once that happens, the DCCC will be exposed as one of the most digustingly vile, corrupt political organizations in American politics. While it’s true that the American people think most politicians are corrupt, there is a tipping point, a jump-the-shark moment, where they get utterly disgusted and turn on that organization.
If the DCCC doesn’t apologize ASAP, Democrats nationwide will suffer. Their reputations will suffer because of their connection to this organization. They’ll suffer financially because people who need money to be competitive won’t have the money because fundraising will dry up.
The DCCC, and the candidates that get assistance from them, will be tainted by this disgusting press release. If they don’t apologize for this ASAP, that’ll be the least of their worries.
After being obstructionists without an original idea, the DCCC is facing the likelihood that their top targeted race is slipping away. With each passing day, the case for re-electing Chip Cravaack keeps getting stronger. That’s why they dispatched hatchetman Eric Pusey to continue their fabrications:
The title for Pusey’s video is an outright lie:
Chip Cravaack will not hold town halls in Duluth
That wasn’t enough for Pusey, though. He shoved a microphone in Chip’s face and asked why Chip hasn’t had a townhall in Duluth. That’s factually inaccurate. Chip was right in pointing that out. Then Pusey made his mistake. That’s when he asked Chip if he planned on having another one, which is fair game.
After Chip replied that he was planning “something special” for Duluth and that they were ironing out the details, Pusey asked if Chip would show up for the event.
That’s one of the dumbest things a pretend reporter has ever asked. It’s impossible to take Pusey seriously. Why would a congressman announce that he’s planning something special, then not attend?
There are really 2 stories working here. The first is that Chip Cravaack will be far more difficult to topple than the DCCC initially thought. The morning after Chip Cravaack defeated Jim Oberstar, the DCCC has salivated over the thought that the seat would return to their column in 2012.
That isn’t going to happen because Chip’s won over old-fashioned Democrats by fighting for mining. Meanwhile, Democrats in DC have shown that they won’t fight for the construction unions.
The other story is that the DFL’s pathetic chanting point of Chip being out of touch with his constituents isn’t working. That’s why they tried shoving a mic in his face in the hopes of getting Chip flustered.
It isn’t just that Chip handled it perfectly. It’s that Pusey looked like a spoiled brat having a hissy fit.
In the end, this is about Chip getting re-elected. Right now, the DFL and the DCCC aren’t happy that they won’t retake the seat they thought was their’s for the taking.
This morning, I had the privilege of interviewing Congressman Chip Cravaack. The first thing that comes across with Congressman Cravaack is his common sense.
When asked about his fight for mining families, Congressman Cravaack talked about a recent townhall meeting. During his presentation, he noticed a union worker nodding his head as he listened to Chip. Chip said that “It was like he was thinking to himself ‘Why is it that I don’t support him’”?
The DFL and the DCCC has done its best to villainize Congressman Cravaack, which is to be expected. What they aren’t expecting is the difficulty they’ll have in pigeon-holing Congressman Cravaack. What they can’t anticipate is the difficult time they’ll have in proving Congressman Cravaack doesn’t relate to the people of the Iron Range.
Two years ago, Chip Cravaack competed with then-Rep. Jim Oberstar for a union endorsement at the Minntac Mine. He lost the endorsement to then-Rep. Oberstar but he was bouyed by the fact that he lost by a 28-25 margin.
Congressman Cravaack isn’t like previous GOP candidates in CD-8. His no-nonsense style and his outreach will make Rep. Cravaack difficult to defeat.
If any CD-8 DFL activist was surprised by Tarryl’s statement after their straw poll, I could’ve told them this would happen. Here’s what Tarryl said via press release:
“Some have said there were significant irregularities last night and were hoping for much higher participation. The stakes are too high to let “politics as usual” determine the fate of Minnesota and our country. Instead, I am committed to creating good jobs for Minnesota families and keeping America’s promises to our seniors, veterans and children.”
This isn’t about politics as usual. It’s about people not warming up to Tarryl. That’s partially because she’s a carpetbagger, partially because she isn’t that great of a candidate. She’s bought into the fallacy that she’s a rising star in the DFL.
The reality is that she was barely good enough to win a state senate seat. She might not have done that if not for 2006 being a terrible year for Republicans.
To be fair, Tarryl’s fundraising abilities are excellent. Unfortunately for Tarryl, she’s as phony as a $3 bill. It isn’t difficult tripping her up.
Rick Nolan is somewhat of an elder statesman in the CD-8 DFL. That’s polite for ‘He’s a fossil’. He’s checked off all the right boxes. He’s served in the House before. In fact, he was my congressman starting in 1975.
The bottom line is this: Neither Nolan nor Tarryl will beat Chip Cravaack in the 8th because he’s accomplished so much in his brief time in office. There’s no question that he’ll be targeted by the DCCC. There’s no question that Chip’s alot tougher than the DCCC is giving him credit for.
The reality is that that district isn’t as blue as people think. I quoted Charlie Cook’s report in this post:
According to Charlie Cook’s PVI index chart, Minnesota’s Eighth District is a D +3 district, meaning there’s a 3 point gap in registration between Democrats and Republicans. If that’s accurate, and there’s no reason to think it isn’t, then Oberstar is in serious trouble.
Alot of GOP political veterans said that the only thing keeping the 8th a blue district was Rep. Oberstar. It turns out that that wasn’t even right.
Tuesday afternoon, Chip Cravaack’s office issued this statement on the FAA Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act:
“After a five-year delay and 23 temporary extensions, this FAA compromise is critical to advancing the nearly eight percent of our nation’s economy impacted by the aviation industry. I commend my colleagues in the House and Senate for working toward a middle-ground solution in the best interest of American workers and their families.”
“While I have always said that EAS needs to be reformed, I’ve worked hard to ensure this long-term funding bill protects Minnesota aviation and construction workers, and finally provides much needed certainty for family budgets.”
Jim Oberstar was the House Transportation Committee chair for 4 of those 5 years. Oberstar’s leadership produced the “five-year delay and 23 temporary extensions.”
Combine that with the likelihood that PolyMet Mining will become reality this year, another thing Rep. Oberstar didn’t get done, and you’ve got the picture that Chip is a problem-solver. Rep. Oberstar’s reputation is that of being a porkmeister.
It isn’t surprising that the DCCC is targeting Chip this year. Before the 2010 midterms, Democrats had held Oberstar’s seat for over 60 years. They aren’t likely to just give up on Chip’s seat.
It isn’t likely that they’ll retake Oberstar’s seat, either. Chip’s accomplishments are substantial. Chip’s accomplishments include creating great paying new jobs on the Range.
The legislation, now prepared for passage, ensures long-term aviation safety and infrastructure funding for the next four years. Importantly, the legislation will not terminate existing Essential Air Service (EAS) programs in Minnesota. Conference reports cannot be amended.
Rep. Oberstar’s recent history shows that he didn’t come close to settling this budget. That’s a committee chair’s first responsibility. If that’s the criteria, Rep. Oberstar’s grade couldn’t top a C, with a C- a distinct possibility.
By comparison, Chip’s grade in helping Minnesota and MN-8 has to be at least a B, with a B+ a definite possibility.
That’s the difference between Beltway leadership and real leadership.
This morning, Michele Bachmann announced that she’s seeking re-election to her Sixth District seat:
MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann announced Wednesday she will seek a fourth term in the U.S. House following her failed presidential bid.
Bachmann declared her plans in an interview with The Associated Press. The Republican congresswoman had been mum on her plans since folding her presidential campaign after a poor showing in the Iowa caucuses earlier this month.
“I’m looking forward to coming back and bringing a strong, powerful voice to Washington, D.C.,” Bachmann said.
Bachmann will be a formidable candidate in Minnesota’s 6th District, where other Republican hopefuls had stood aside until she made a decision on running for re-election. Some experts had speculated that Bachmann might instead turn to a career in talk media.
That ends speculation that the DFL has a chance of flipping her seat. They don’t. Take that seat off the radar.
Her announcement came in an interview to react to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech. Just as she did on the campaign trail, Bachmann criticized Obama for “doubling down on failures that didn’t work.”
“We have to radically scale back on government spending, we have to radically cut back on debt accumulation,” Bachmann said.
It’s refreshing to hear Michele back talking about cutting President Obama’s reckless spending. What’s even more promising is the likelihood that she’ll have a gavel with which to start implementing that agenda.
Ed’s on the case, too, with this post:
Bachmann won her last re-election bid against well-known Taryl Clark by twelve points, so redistricting is probably not a big concern for Bachmann. Minnesota’s Congressional allocation did not change in the last census, although it only narrowly avoided losing a district. The redistricting plan will likely shift the margins around a little, perhaps moving a few precincts of very liberal MN-05 (Keith Ellison’s district) into MN-06, but it’s doubtful that MN-06 will change dramatically enough to endanger Bachmann in 2012.
Besides, Bachmann raised her stature considerably during the presidential campaign. She now has a broader base for fundraising, which builds on what had already been a strength for her in the past. While her hyperbole on Gardasil hurt her in the campaign (and will almost certainly be revisited by the DFL in the district), her overall performance dispelled the “crazy eyes” image that the media had imposed on her during her rise in the House and with Tea Party grassroots. Bachmann ended up presenting the most effective debate attacks on Rick Perry and then later Newt Gingrich, and was a formidable force in those encounters throughout the race.
Ed later said that the DCCC would likely dump lots of money into Michele’s race, something I question a bit. They dumped tons of money into her race in 2010 with a candidate they thought was perfectly suited to defeat Michele. They spent alot of money but Michele still kicked Tarryl’s ass.
At some point, you’d think that the money people at the DCCC would say ‘No mas’. This might be that year.
Since the night that Chip Cravaack defeated Jim Oberstar, the DCCC has had a target on Chip’s back. That’s why the DCCC’s latest cheapshot against Chip is predictable, pathetic and dishonest.
“Congressman Chip Cravaack is eligible to vote in the New Hampshire primary so why shouldn’t he vote in his new home state?” asked Haley Morris of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Granite Staters, Republican presidential candidates, and especially Minnesotans would all love to know whether Congressman Chip Cravaack is voting today.
The powers-that-be at the DCCC should’ve let Morris know that they’d planned on exposing his lie in the same email they printed his lie:
On July 16, Cravaack announced he was setting up his reelection campaign for the eighth congressional district of Minnesota sooner than expected and that his wife and children would be moving to New Hampshire, “where they’ll purchase a home, though he’ll continue to live in the 8th Congressional District and move to North Branch.”
What part of “he’ll continue to live in the 8th Congressional District” doesn’t Mr. Morris understand? I’m willing to give Mr. Morris the benefit of the doubt because New Hampshire Democrats apparently don’t reject dead people at their polling stations.
Since defeating Rep. Oberstar, Chip’s met quarterly with the MPCA and the EPA to iron out any differences that might delay PolyMet becoming a reality. I wrote here that Jim Oberstar didn’t lift a finger to make PolyMet a reality until he noticed that Chip was a serious candidate.
The last thing the DCCC wants is a serious, honest discussion of Chip’s accomplishments or their candidates’ shortcomings. That’s why they’re resorting to these dishonest, dim-witted attacks against Chip Cravaack.
Chairman Ryan, the definitive source on all things relating to entitlements, says that Rick Perry and Mitt Romney are right about Social Security:
Social Security fits the technical definition of a Ponzi scheme, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) told conservative Laura Ingraham on her radio show.
“It’s not a criminal enterprise, but it’s a pay-as-you-go system, where earlier investors, or say, taxpayers, get a positive rate of return, and the most recent investors, or taxpayers, get a negative rate of return,” he said. “That is how those schemes work.”
Perry’s description of the Social Security as a “Ponzi sceheme” has been attacked by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Perry’s leading challenger for the GOP presidential nomination. Romney criticized Perry for scaring seniors and wanting to abolish the program, warning that the Republican nominee needs to work to reform the program.
“They’re both right,” Ryan said of Perry and Romney. “[Social Security] is not working, it is going bankrupt, and current seniors will be jeopardized the most by the status quo.”
This isn’t as taboo of a subject as it once was, even in Florida. Yesterday, Shannon Bream reported that different generations have different reactions to the term Ponzi Scheme. She said that older generations have the most adverse reaction to the term. Even there, though, the reflexive reaction isn’t outrage.
There’s a totally different reaction when talking with 20-somethings. That age cohort, for the most part, don’t think they’ll get paid any Social Security benefits when they retire. The term Ponzi Scheme is right in their eyes.
Predictably, the DCCC reflexively reacted to Chairman Ryan’s statement:
“Ryan’s belief that Social Security works like a Ponzi scheme proves, once and for all, that House Republicans have really declared a war on seniors,” DCCC spokesman Jesse Ferguson said in a statement. “A Ponzi scheme is Bernie Madoff ripping off Americans, not Social Security benefits that seniors earned and depend on during retirement.”
The DCCC’s reaction is predictable. It’s reflexive demagoguery worthy of Al Gore or Alan Grayson. Let’s be clear about this. The scam that Bernie Madoff ran was a Ponzi Scheme. Madoff stole billions of dollars from people. There isn’t enough time in prison for what he did.
There’s another definition of Ponzi Scheme that isn’t about criminal behavior. Here’s Dictionary.com’s definition of Ponzi Scheme:
an investment swindle in which early investors are paid with sums obtained from later ones in order to create the illusion of profitability
Seniors currently collecting benefits or previous generations of seniors who collected benefits think it’s a positive thing. It’s equally understandable that graduates entering the workforce think it isn’t a good deal. They’re the people paying into a system that won’t guarantee an equitable return on investment.
It’d be surprising if 20-somethings thought that was a worthwhile investment.
While demographics shift from older generations to younger generations, the Democrats will be caught on the wrong side of this issue more frequently. It’s a shifting time bomb that eventually will explode in their face.
That’s why it’s smart generational politics for Gov. Perry to highlight this issue. The more he talks about it, the more youthful, energetic TEA Party activists he’ll attract to knock on doors, volunteer at phone banks and get his message out.
Based on what I’ve heard inside the district and based on this post, it’s apparent that Tarryl isn’t ready to return to her former life as a lobbyist:
Minnesota Democrat Tarryl Clark continues to show signs of preparing for another run against Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.).
In an e-mail to supporters Wednesday, Clark criticized Bachmann’s recent trip to Iowa and her response to President Obama’s State of the Union address.
“Even with Bachmann working harder than ever to increase her own fame, and push the agenda of her wealthiest supporters, last night’s speech was more than a little strange,” Clark wrote.
In her speech Tuesday Bachmann criticized the president for overspending and credited the Tea Party movement for shifting the balance of power in Washington.
“She repeated many of her usual false claims,” said Clark, citing Bachmann’s mention of the federal government hiring 16,500 new IRS agent as one example.
“Michele Bachmann is wrong on the facts, and wrong on the issues,” Clark continued. “We need honest debate, and civil discourse. We need to speak up. We need to get active, and stay active.”
If O’Care isn’t ruled unconstitutional, the IRS will have to find out if everyone is insured in compliance with the individual mandate. Does Tarryl think that the IRS will just accept on good faith the fact that everyone is complying or is it likely that they’ll need additional IRS agents to verify compliance? These people aren’t going to just pop out of thin air.
This is Tarryl’s fatal flaw: she’s fond of telling whoppers while accusing others of telling whoppers. This isn’t the first time I’ve noticed this trait. It’s just the first time I’ve written about it.
As for civil discourse, it’s rather difficult when your opponent is telling whoppers. Nonetheless, that’s what Michele did during their St. Cloud Chamber of Commerce debate. Tarryl attacked Michele relentlessly to no avail. Talking with a variety of journalists afterwards, they told me that the biggest thing to them was how Michele stayed composed while Tarryl attacked.
It wasn’t that Michele was a shrinking violet in responding to Tarryl’s attacks. It’s just that she responded sharply but under control. Tarryl left the Civic Center that day a very frustrated lady.
What’s worse for Tarryl was that people throughout the audience didn’t believe her wild accusations. She argued that Michele’s vote against the stimulus was “a vote to raise taxes”. It would’ve been credible if Tarryl had said that voting for the stimulus would’ve provided a tax cut. That’s an accurate, albeit incomplete, statement.
Tarryl insisted, after accepting a plethora of union endorsements and contributions from their PACs, that she wouldn’t have voted for Card Check. Again, Tarryl was exposed as just another whopper-teller pleading for votes.
If Tarryl runs again, her agenda of raising taxes & spending will crucify her. Her credibility is shot, too. Yes, she’ll have a robust fundraising operation but so will Michele.
Barring a major change in the nation’s mood, which isn’t likely, Tarryl will be running in another anti-Democrat cycle again against a superior candidate who fits the district infinitely better.
That said, I pray that Tarryl runs again. She’ll suck up tons of contributions that might otherwise be used to win races that are actually competitive. If Tarryl thinks that she’ll be competitive after getting defeated by 13 points, that’s her right. It’s just that she’s delusional if she thinks it’ll be a close race.