Archives for Politics

In elections from coast to coast, voters take over

From rural Iowa to urban New York, voters across America will render judgment in a slate of political contests Tuesday, including in New Jersey and Virginia where gubernatorial race outcomes could highlight the Republican Party division between pragmatists and ideologues. Elsewhere, Colorado voters will set a tax rate for marijuana. New York City will elect a new mayor for the first time in 12 years, while Boston’s mayoral race pits white collar against blue collar, and Detroit’s spotlights the city’s bankruptcy — just three of the many mayoral contests from coast to coast. Republican and Democratic strategists alike say that
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In Virginia, a state race with national implications

To appreciate their vastly different strategies in the race for Virginia governor, simply look at how the candidates spent Monday, the final full day of campaigning before polls open. Ken Cuccinelli raced from stop to stop, trying to overcome a deficit in the polls, a crush of negative ads and a lingering wariness among fellow Republicans about his deeply conservative views. His rival, Terry McAuliffe, enjoyed a last-minute visit from Vice President Joe Biden and pledged to use the national health care law to give 400,000 Virginians health care coverage. Their approaches capture the essence of the race: Cuccinelli, the
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Virginia election will be a referendum on Obamacare

In Virginia, candidates on both sides of a long, bitter race for governor spent the weekend turning the final hours into a referendum on President Barack Obama’s health care “reform.” The decision to nationalize the race is a question that voters — at least those who care enough to turn out — will answer on Tuesday. Democrat Terry McAuliffe, armed with lots of campaign cash and polls which show him ahead, campaigned with President Barack Obama in Northern Virginia. Republcian Ken Cuccinelli, out of money and running out of time, hit right-wing strongholds in Southwestern Virginia hoping to increase campaign
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Is Virginia the beginning of the end of the tea party?

If, as expected, tea party-favorite Ken Cuccinelli goes down in a governor’s race in Virginia where he was once expected to easily win over flawed Democrat Terry McAuliffe, the party of the elephant will intensify its inward look at what is gutting them from within and alienating voters in droves. The finger-pointing has already begun as the GOP braces itself for a bitter defeat in a key swing state where Republicans have controlled the governor’s mansion and the general assembly with ease over the past four years. “It’s not supposed to be this way right now,” longtime GOP strategist Gary
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Cuccinelli, often caught lying, claims ‘truth is our friend’

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, whose campaign for governor is struggling in the final days of the race against Democrat Terry McAuliffe, claims he still has a chance in the race because people are learning more about him and “the truth is our friend.” An interesting comment from an official who has come under fire for shading the truth and lying outright as the state’s top law enforcement official, Cuccinelli has come under firse for stalling investigations against major contributors to his campaign, lying about his relationship with the scandal-scarred CEO of Star Scientific and other campaign irregularities, He trails
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Ultra right-wing working hard for complete takeover of GOP

Virtually unknown outside Washington, a coalition of hardline conservative groups is fighting to seize control of the Republican agenda. Tea party allies like the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks and Heritage Action for America showed their might by insisting that the GOP embrace the government shutdown that hurt the nation’s economy and the party’s reputation. Now emboldened, these groups are warning that their aggressive agenda-pushing tactics aren’t over — and they’re threatening retribution against Republicans who stand in their way. “They refuse to learn,” Chris Chocola, a former Indiana congressman who leads the Club for Growth, says of lawmakers who buck
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Bipartisanship in Iowa politics? Oh, get real

Outside a state-of-the-art grain elevator, Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley talks of how Republicans and Democrats in Congress need to overcome differences that scuttled farm legislation last summer. A day later, he tells veterans at a rec center in his blue-collar, northern Iowa district that both parties should work together to help them. “The issues surrounding our veterans should be issues that bring us together, not issues that drive us apart,” Braley says in a bipartisan pitch that lacks direct criticism of Republicans over the 16-day partial government shutdown. In this district dotted with farming towns as well as in districts
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In the states, Republicans still control the game

Since the government shutdown, public opinion of the Republican Party has hit a new low. Yet the Democrats might not be able to gain from it. Despite the GOP’s fall from grace — and even if they suffer a lower vote count in the 2014 midterm elections — the Republicans might still control the House of Representatives and many state legislatures after the polls close. Our Constitution is unique in that it gives state legislatures virtually complete control over how we elect the president and Congress. In other democracies, the national government runs elections, usually through an impartial commission. Our
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GOP woes deepen a year after Romney debacle

A year after losing a presidential race many Republicans thought was winnable, the party arguably is in worse shape than before. The GOP is struggling to control tensions between its tea party and establishment wings and watching approval ratings sink to record lows. It’s almost quaint to recall that soon after Mitt Romney lost to President Barack Obama, the Republican National Committee recommended only one policy change: endorsing an immigration overhaul, in hopes of attracting Hispanic voters. That immigration bill is now struggling for life and attention in the Republican-run House. The bigger worry for many party leaders is the
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Business and GOP: ‘Bye, bye’ to tea party troublemakers

A slice of corporate America thinks tea partyers have overstayed their welcome in Washington and should be shown the door in next year’s congressional elections. In Michigan, longtime businessmen Brian Ellis and David Trott are challenging hardline conservative Reps. Justin Amash and Kerry Bentivolio in Republican primaries. This comes after three years of frustration over GOP insurgents roughing up the business community’s agenda. That all came to a head with the 16-day partial government shutdown and the threat of a national financial default. The Michigan races are a turnabout after several years of widely heralded contests in which right-flank candidates
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