Weekend Open Thread for June 16-18, 2017

First off, check back tomorrow morning for a preview and open thread for the UT-3 GOP convention. France has its legislative runoffs on Sunday. Only 4 out of 577 seats were decided in the first round last week, but President Emmanuel Macron’s corporate-liberal centrist En Marche (Let’s Go) party is projected to win around 3/4 of the seats in the runoffs.

Next, we are making the following ratings change ahead of next week’s elections: GA-6 goes to Lean D from Lean R. SC-5 remains at Safe R.

And now this week’s questions:

1. Do additional precautions need to be taken with regards to the security of members of Congress?

2. In general, do you see hyperbolic and emotional rhetoric in politics as a problem?

And because it’s the weekend, we’re thankful for the heroic and professional police officers who prevented a greater tragedy this week, unlike say, the one you see HERE.

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  • cer June 16, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    IMHO GA-6 should be listed as a TOSS-UP at worse. I really do think you should reconsider that position.

    Conservative first, Republican second!

    • cer June 16, 2017 at 6:08 pm

      Particularly with a couple of the most recent polls that just came out that shows the race a dead heat!

      Conservative first, Republican second!

    • Boehnerwasright June 16, 2017 at 6:52 pm

      Rarely i agree with CER, but he is right. I don’t see how anything else then a toss-up is justified. The first round was close with 49% DEM and 51% R and polling still has it as a tossup.

      • Jon June 16, 2017 at 7:59 pm

        With the election this Tuesday; in my book a Tossup rating would be a cop-out.

        45, M, MO-02

        • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 16, 2017 at 8:03 pm

          Yeah, I’m a big fan of how RRH predictions don’t waffle on “tossups” very often. If we’re not going to waffle with a tossup, then lean-D is the only thing that makes sense to me. I don’t think anyone here would take a 51/49 bet in favor of Karen Handel.

          I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

          • cer June 16, 2017 at 8:45 pm

            I would….

            Conservative first, Republican second!

          • Jon June 16, 2017 at 8:54 pm

            I’d take it if the payout for winning on the Republican side were higher than the payout for winning on the D side.

            45, M, MO-02

    • Izengabe June 16, 2017 at 10:13 pm

      Us moderators had a big back and forth about this. As a policy we don’t do tossups. Some of us felt that the policy should have been changed because this race is a legitimate toss up and rating it anything else would be dishonest others felt that if there was even a scintilla of lean one way or another we should call it that way. So dont read too much into this rating.

      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

      • californianintexas June 16, 2017 at 10:55 pm

        The Blogging Caesar also doesn’t call races tossups.

        34, Female, Libertarian, UT-02 (hometown CA-31), theelectionsgeek.com

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 16, 2017 at 5:53 pm

    I think this was mentioned yesterday. British voters support Corbyn’s position of requisitioning private housing in the aftermath of the Kensington fire, 59-28.


    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • Izengabe June 16, 2017 at 10:15 pm

      Polls like that make me grateful for the US Constitution.

      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

    • w920us June 16, 2017 at 10:26 pm

      First they need to take all the American celebrities living in London and use their homes first.

      R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
      #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

    • kewgardens June 17, 2017 at 5:27 am

      Well, its not THEIR home that is being “requisitioned.” By the way, I love that word. It sounds so much better than confiscated.

    • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 5:23 pm

      Well this is kind of a “loaded” question. We don’t know that there aren’t other non vacant “luxury properties” that can be used to house the people who lost their apartments in the fire. We are not talking about something like a thousand homeless people, likely considerably less, so it shouldn’t be that difficult to find housing for them. However, the way the question is worded one might think these luxury properties have to be “requistioned” in order to adequately house the fire victims. Corbyn is as usual playing to class warfare sentiment, which he excels in and which does appeal to his supporters; make those arrogant rich people give up their vacant flats to the poor fire victims! But is investing in real estate any worse than investing in stocks and bonds? A lot of people do it (for the record I am not one so I don’t have a personal interest) and they are not all multi millionaires And needless to say if Comrade Corbyn “requistions” your property don’t expect to get adequate (if any) compensation for it. I would note even with this “loaded question” only about 1/3 strongly agree.

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 16, 2017 at 6:13 pm

    If you want to simultaneously laugh at the fake news media and the total idiocy of establishment conservative “intellectuals”, this WaPo article on Virginia and GA-6 is a pretty good place to start.


    Of course, every baseline sentient human being who remembers Republicans crowing about how Clinton would lose in a landslide because of GOP primary turnout should join in the laughter.

    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

  • Republican Michigander June 16, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    I disagree with the GA-6 rating. I’d call it a toss-up. That was my view since the primary, and that hasn’t changed.

    “Do additional precautions need to be taken with regards to the security of members of Congress?””

    Yes. That’s based on things I’ve seen before this that I’d rather not post on a public board.

    “””In general, do you see hyperbolic and emotional rhetoric in politics as a problem?”””

    I think the problem is that power is too centralized in the federal government and the executive/judicial branches of the federal government. When everything is on the line and voters think this affects them personally, that means there’s too much power. As long as the federal government has as much power as it has, there will continue to be hyperbolic and emotional rhetoric. More power needs to go back to the states and locals. If there can be an agreement to let California be California, Texas be Texas, Michigan be Michigan, and New York be New York, Miami be Miami, and Livingston County be Livingston County, there can be a starting point to work with.

    MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

  • MosheM June 16, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    Ossoff +2 in another new poll.


    28, M, R, NY-10

    • cer June 16, 2017 at 6:52 pm

      Actually his lead is under 2%. Looks like there is a slight tick towards Handel compared to their last poll.

      In other words, this race is still a tossup.

      Conservative first, Republican second!

      • Manhatlibertarian June 16, 2017 at 9:46 pm

        Ossoff was ahead of Handel by 2.5 points in the June 6-7 Landmark poll and is ahead by 1.7 points in this poll. The margin of error is 3.46 so the race is close. Interestingly in this poll, taken June 15 (yesterday), Ossoff leads by 8.8 points with those who have voted, which is less than other recent polls which have shown his lead in the mid teens for the early vote. So while this still means Ossoff goes into election day with votes “in the bank” , it is not quite such a lead for Handel to overcome on election day if this poll is correct. The bad news for Handel in this poll is that Ossoff leads 57.7 to 34.6 among independents; if she loses Tuesday that will be the reason. So with the race tied in 2 recent polls and Handel only behind by 1.7 points in this poll, I think the race has moved a little toward Handel but is is not clear if it will be enough to put her over the finish line.

      • Izengabe June 16, 2017 at 10:18 pm

        I think the big factor here will be turnout. There is talk of turnout being on par with 2014. I have to believe larger turnout helps Handel and wonder if the polls are modeling for that.

        Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

        • MikeFL June 17, 2017 at 1:17 pm

          That plus how Romney/Clinton/Downballot Rs are feeling on Tuesday. I hope Monday will be a quiet news day.

          26 | FL-3/-16 | FisCon

  • californianintexas June 16, 2017 at 6:45 pm

    Good news on Scalise:


    “On Scalise, MedStar’s Dr Sava says he’s “encouraged..by the improvement over the past 36 hours.” Got internal bleeding under control.”

    34, Female, Libertarian, UT-02 (hometown CA-31), theelectionsgeek.com

    • cer June 16, 2017 at 6:58 pm

      This reminds me of Reagan all over again. It appears the Congressman was in much worse condition than was first reported.

      Conservative first, Republican second!

      • Jon June 16, 2017 at 9:05 pm

        Reagan really was in bad shape when he arrived at the hospital (heavy internal bleeding + punctured lung) and would have died if not treated quickly.

        45, M, MO-02

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 16, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    Several Democratic staffers apparently booed both Donald Trump and the ceremonial moment of silence/prayer for Steve Scalise at the post-shooting unity baseball game.


    This should hopefully rebut the notion that swamp denizens, if denied any oversight or democratic accountability, would be nicer and more civil than the voters who reluctantly vote for them.

    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

  • GOPTarHeel June 17, 2017 at 12:28 am

    This Bret Stephens column is basically the definition of VBKC-bait


    • Greyhound June 17, 2017 at 12:43 am

      And people wonder why the average Republican voter thinks that the Conservative “intelligentsia” hate them.

      R, 26, CA-18. Nothing smooths over divisions like victory.

    • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 17, 2017 at 1:01 am


      I actually agree with half of the op-ed. I’m pretty optimistic about the integration of Hispanic immigrants and wouldn’t favor their mass deportation. Especially because they do not share any of the values of this conservative “intelligentsia” and will grow to hate them just as much as the rest of America does. Pretty much all of Bret Stephen’s stats on native-born Americans are skewed up by minorities and American-born immigrant children (especially in crime and unemployment), who by-and-large blame those statistics on the policies and ideology of people like Bret Stephens.

      Hopefully one day, Americans of all ethnic backgrounds will join hands to mass deport this conservative “intelligentsia” to countries that embody their political agenda (Mainland China? Somalia? Saudi Arabia?)

      I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

      • Wahoowa June 17, 2017 at 11:23 am

        You can’t see me, but I’m rolling my eyes.


      • indocon June 18, 2017 at 3:20 am

        Brett Stephens -> deport Americans (preferably white)
        Bill Krystol -> lazy white working class
        David Brooks -> dying white america

        What could be common among these 3 stooges?

        • GOPTarHeel June 18, 2017 at 11:09 am

          I really, really hope you mean that they’re NeverTrump and not something involving a bunch of parantheses.


    • MikeFL June 17, 2017 at 1:14 pm

      I’m probably more sympathetic to this branch of the party than most, but the sanctimonious BS personified in columns like this is why we ended up with Trump in the first place. If you want people to understand why things like immigration, free trade, etc. are good for the country overall, you have to explain that in a way that isn’t so condescending while providing solutions to those who might be negatively affected in the short term. This is partly why there is so much animus in the country between groups that’s promoting this tribalism, and neither party is being honest about what needs to be done.

      26 | FL-3/-16 | FisCon

      • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 10:16 pm

        You’re probably right, although I have great respect for Bret Stephens for refusing to sticking to his principles, and some respect for the NY Times that they did not kowtow to far left flunkies after they hired him.

        Independent, R until November 2016

  • rdelbov June 17, 2017 at 7:52 am

    Seems like it was another big day for Rs on Friday? 140K so far?

    I still wonder whether the lack of comments on early vote numbers from MSM means good news for Handel?

    • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 1:13 pm

      Early in person voting in Ga6 now is over, although some more absentee ballots may still trickle in. The approximately 140K early votes (both in person and mail) break down roughly 60.000 No Party, 50,000 GOP and 30,000 Dems (my best guess from Prof McDonald’s bar graph). Despite this, polls are showing Ossoff is ahead in the early vote, which I attribute mainly to Ossoff doing very well with No Party early voters. Prof McDonald thinks that Ossoff will not win the early vote by as high a percentage as he did in April and also thinks the higher the turnout on Tuesday the better for Handel, which is also what I think. It is clear that there are a lot more early votes this time compared to April: 56,459 in April and 140,309 to date in June. In fact the amount of early votes now exceeds the amount of early votes (99,042) for the 2014 general election by quite a bit. So this is likely to be a big turnout for a special election folks and the key question is the extent to which the early vote is “cannibalizing” the election day vote, particularly for Handel. If election day turnout is high I think Handel wins; if it is low it is likely she loses. Fashion your seatbelts I think we are in for a bumpy ride Tuesday night, with much angst until all the votes are in. And imagine how totally crazy things will get if one candidate has a lead of only a couple of hundred over the other when all the votes are in. Recounts and challenged ballots galore. I think this special election must all be a plot by Putin to drive Americans crazy (well not really)!


      • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 1:52 pm

        And I should also mention that Prof McDonald points out that a group (likely Dem leaning) sued to have only paper ballots in this Ga6 special election rather than voting machines but lost in court. The touch screen voting machines (I think they are called DRE voting machines) don’t leave a paper trail, so of course if Ossoff loses you can be sure there will be complaints is some quarters that the machines were “rigged” against him. Par for the course.

        • rdelbov June 17, 2017 at 3:08 pm

          I am just wondering whether some Trump/Handel supporters might not be answering polling questions?

          I do note that this go around we are getting less helpful information from MSM and liberal bloggers like Cohn and McDonald.

          • Boehnerwasright June 17, 2017 at 3:35 pm

            Down below is a complete tweetstorm about the early vote by Cohn and if you looks at Cohn’s timeline there are quite a lot of tweets about the early vote. The updates by McDonald about early vote are about the same in comparison to round 2.
            It is possible to validate ones believe about a biased MSM if a person doesn’t search for things that run counter to their believes/ignore facts that run counter to a believe.


            • rdelbov June 17, 2017 at 5:58 pm

              Oh not that is incorrect. Cohn has only been tweeting numbers-McDonald has only been twitting the same charts.

              1st In March and April there was numerous posts from Cohn and McDonald relating how the early vote by party was +23R. Yet in March there were more Ds then Rs (by last primary vote) and this was detailed out by Cohn and McDonald. Are there daily updates on these numbers now? If you did not catch the daily breathless announcements of how well the Ds were doing two months ago you must have been here on this site because they got reposted on a daily basis here.

              2nd we got details about which county had early vote turnout numbers and somehow we are not getting those now.

              • rdelbov June 17, 2017 at 6:04 pm

                I note that Professor McDonald left this fact off.

                early Vote in April 41D-41R by primary choice.
                Early Vote in June elecitons 47R-30D by last primary choice.

                I note neither commentor–McDonald or Cohn have commented on this. Can anyone find a comment on this fact?

              • roguemapper June 17, 2017 at 6:04 pm

                You can get city & county figures here: https://twitter.com/usadems101

                Dem NC-11

  • Left Coast Libertarian June 17, 2017 at 11:12 am

    Josh Newman, a freshman Democratic state senator in a swing district, is subject to a recall petition. Democrats are trying to rig the system to help him by changing the recall rules in a veterans’ bill. Newman’s supporters are doing the proper thing when complaining about the opposition campaign tactics. They’re reporting them to the state election commission. BTW, if being misleading were a reason to come down hard on a campaign all campaigns would get sanctioned. That isn’t enough for Democrats in the legislature. They need to use their legislative power to help him.


    • krazen1211 June 17, 2017 at 1:12 pm

      Romney barely won this district. Trump lost it by about 13ish?

      I think a recall might work.

    • fzw June 17, 2017 at 1:28 pm

      One thing working against the recall petitioners is that I do think there is a significant amount of people who are generally anti-recall even if they dislike what the person has done. I think that’s a large part of why Walker won his recall pretty handily too. There might be a “give him another chance” effect here, but who knows

      NY-23 from MO-3. Soon to be RI-1.
      #MADGA (Make a Divided Government Again)

    • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Well you know let’s all play by the rules until the rules get in the way. The fact of the matter is that voting to increase the gasoline tax is likely not popular in this swing district and Newman might very well lose a recall. So the Dems change the rules to push a recall into the general election time period which is likely more favorable for a Dem. Kind of reminds me of the actions of a Dem leaning County Board of Elections in Fla in 2000 (I think it was Palm Beach County). Some Dems were grumbling that the hand recount was not producing enough new votes for Gore, so the County Board of Elections changed the rules in the middle of the recount to broaden the definition of what constitutes a valid ballot and thereby help produce more ballots for Gore. Oh well rules are made to be broken, particularly when it helps “my side.”

      • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 2:14 pm

        I might add I have mixed feelings about legislative recalls as terms are normally short enough (2 or 4 years) that you don’t have to have endless elections because someone doesn’t vote the way you like on a particular bill. I think legislative recalls in particular were put into effect to get quickly rid of legislators accused of corruption, but that is not the case here. But suddenly changing the recall rules for partisan purposes is a no no as far as I am concerned.

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 17, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    Another study that finds Trump voters essentially clustered into four, fairly well-defined ideological groups. And that they share almost nothing except this:

    “Evaluations of the economy, attitudes toward Hillary Clinton, illegal immigration, and Muslim immigration—but not immigration across the board—largely distinguish the Trump voters from non-Trump voters.”


    It’s also pretty amusing, because almost every R-voter here fits really really well into one of these groups.

    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • MikeFL June 17, 2017 at 2:50 pm

      Other than the fact I didn’t vote for Trump, I’m definitely in the “free-marketeer” group.

      26 | FL-3/-16 | FisCon

      • californianintexas June 17, 2017 at 9:00 pm

        Me too. At least in Utah we had a viable alternative to Trump and Clinton.

        34, Female, Libertarian, UT-02 (hometown CA-31), theelectionsgeek.com

    • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 9:33 pm

      I’d be a free marketeer too (ditto with others on not voting for Trump), although I am a bit more culturally conservative than that group.
      Also, I personally consider the “American Preservationists” viewpoint to be highly distateful, particularly their authoritarianism and white supremacy (47% think you need to be of “European descent” to be American), and even more so than the average D one. That is probably part of why I didn’t vote for Trump.

      Independent, R until November 2016

  • Manhatlibertarian June 17, 2017 at 3:12 pm

    Right wing Matt Drudge of the website Drudge Report says the GOP deserves to lose the Ga6 special election because they are too interested in investigating Trump. He states “Don’t Republicans deserve to lose Georgia race next week? Done so little to help president; have spent most of time investigating him! BURN” Drudge lives in his own alternative universe. To begin with although there have been some Repubs who have been critical of the Pres (McCain, Sanford and Amash in particular come to mind) the majority of Repubs in Congress have not attacked him and many have expressed concern about the continual unauthorized leaks over the Trump-Russia investigation during committee hearings. Handel doesn’t run around with a Trump sticker glued to her forehead, but she has indicated she supports Trump. To think that Ossoff winning the Ga special election will be interpreted as a a rebuke to the GOP for not supporting Trump enough is pure fantasy. The MSM will play an Ossoff victory as a great rebuke to Trump and his policies and that is why liberal Dems across the country have poured $24 million into the Ossoff campaign. Drudge is truly a “useful idiot” for the Dems.


    • MikeFL June 17, 2017 at 3:56 pm

      Looks like the stupid party moniker isn’t only for the establishment GOP. I haven’t taken Drudge seriously since he started attacking Cruz as a Democrat would back in 2015. People like him and Gingrich are just as much a problem as some of the think tank conservative elitists.

      And again, while the MSM is obviously against conservatives a vast majority of the time, no one forced Trump to hire Flynn, Manafort, and Page, or consort with Roger Stone. No one forced Trump to seem chummy with Russia just because their government was saying nice things about him. No one forced Trump to demand loyalty pledges and try to get Flynn’s investigation dropped. No one forced Trump to fire Comey and then undermine the DoJ’s memo in an interview. No one made Trump tweet about recording conservations in the Oval. Trump is clearly not sophisticated enough to collude with the Russians, but he is self-saboteur-in-chief, and all of these problems are partly because of him, not the McCains of the world.

      26 | FL-3/-16 | FisCon

    • krazen1211 June 17, 2017 at 6:10 pm

      Congressional Rs biggest failure to date is not getting the wall funded. Health care is a wait and see for another month.

      • roguemapper June 17, 2017 at 6:12 pm

        Mexico is supposed to pay for the wall so that failure is on the Donald’s foreign policy, not Congress.

        Dem NC-11

        • krazen1211 June 17, 2017 at 9:43 pm

          Not really. That promise is Donald’s problem, and not really Congressional R’s problem. Group 2 is on the ballot in 2018. Trump is not.

          Given the history of midterm elections one would hope that Congressional Rs could at least act in their own interest. Pony up a few billion dollars and they could have at least pieces of a big beautiful wall when the 2018 elections come along.

      • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 9:52 pm

        I don’t think funding the wall is near the top of things Congress has to do. Trump’s major agenda items are repealing Obamacare, corporate tax reform (and individual tax reform but less urgent), and infrastructure.
        Of course, Trump’s base may not see it that way, and apparently Chuck Schumer has also decided that blocking funding for the wall was his #1 priority. (Not really sure why, a billion or two for the wall seems a lot less important to the Ds than many other things).

        Independent, R until November 2016

        • krazen1211 June 17, 2017 at 10:24 pm

          Well, I agree, items 1 and 2 for Congressional Rs were Obamacare and taxes. Those are things that will take time, and have taken time, and I am personally willing to give them that time (clock is running out on Obamacare).

          Immigration, sanctuary cities, and the wall is something they could have addressed already 2-3 months ago, and its something a lot of our voters care about. Congressional Rs should deliver for our voters.

          This shouldn’t really be that hard…Democrats are rather dumb in many ways but at least they do what their voters want some of the time.

        • Boehnerwasright June 17, 2017 at 10:32 pm

          Why shouldn’t Schumer block funding for the wall? It unifies democrats and the boarder wall polls badly. Most polls I saw had the wall at around 35-40% approval and even less if the USA paid for it. Without having hard data I would guess the opponents of the wall are a lot more energized then supporters of this proposal.
          Schumer would love to have a gov. shutdown over funding for a boarder wall.Even vulnerable senate dems can easily justify voting against that by saying Mexiko should pay for it. I’m not sure there are even 50 votes in the senate for funding a wall.

          • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 10:44 pm

            He can, but it can’t possibly be the #1 issue that Ds are concerned about (other than investigating Trump). And he also has 5 D senators up for reelection in 2018 in states that Trump carried by 19% or more.
            I understand (and agree with) the argument against this wall (and yes Trump promised that Mexico will pay for the wall, not the American taxpayer). But you’re telling me that there is nothing you (Schumer) are willing to trade in your priorities for a billion or two for the wall?

            Independent, R until November 2016

            • roguemapper June 17, 2017 at 11:14 pm

              Schumer’s reasoning is quite clear imo. The Donald’s base wants the wall. In fact, the most unreliable segments of the Donald’s base (as confirmed by the above link on voter categories) are those who are most intensely in favor of the wall. Failing to build the wall will anger the Donald’s base. They will therefore be less likely to vote for Rs if Rs fail to deliver the promised wall. Worst case scenario is that they turn out to vote for Rs anyhow, which would be a wash. For Ds, the potential upside of blocking the wall is far greater than the potential downside of blocking the wall.

              Dem NC-11

              • Boehnerwasright June 17, 2017 at 11:47 pm

                I would agree with your post and add that voting for a boarder wall would also play badly with the dem base. To get dem senators to vote for wall funding you need something really big as a trade from the republicans. Like no tax cuts for rich people big.
                For now blocking the wall is a great PR-tool for dems, has the potential to depress unreliable republican turnout and you risk depressing your own base/getting primary challengers by voting for boarder funding.

                And given how enthusiastic some republican senators(heller and flake) sound about wall funding I doubt they will give up that much to get Trump the wall.

              • Indy1975a June 18, 2017 at 12:32 am

                I’d guess that much of those unreliable segments of Trump’s base are not regular voters and mostly won’t show up at the polls in 2018 anyway. They will only vote for Trump. It is not that dissimilar to portions of Obama’s base in 2010 and 2018.
                On the flip side, the Ds are energized enough just to send Trump a message, that they’ll come out even if you do fund the wall and get something big in return.

                Independent, R until November 2016

                • Manhatlibertarian June 18, 2017 at 1:19 pm

                  I think more important than the wall is showing the Trump Admin is increasing the deportation of illegal aliens who commit crimes or ignore multiple deportation orders. Without any great increase in ICE personnel that has already started to go up. The Trump Administration will likely push for hiring additional ICE agents in the FY2018 budget, thereby increasing these deportations. Schumer and the Dems may oppose this but even some centrist Dems would be reluctant to vote against beefing up ICE to get rid of the worst of the illegal aliens. And since many illegals come into the US legally at first and then overstay temporary visas, beefing up ICE enables you to target all illegal aliens , not just the border crossers an expensive wall may deter. I know in suburban Suffolk County in NY, Dem County officials have worked closely with ICE to deport members of the notorious and violent MS-13 gang , many of whose members are illegal aliens from Central America. So I think increasing ICE staffing to remove more illegals in priority categories is something Dems in Congress may have more difficulty opposing than the wall, although many will do so because of pressure from SJW types. Also making the E verify system a national system (some but not most states have it) that employers must participate in will deter hiring of illegals in the workforce. These things are cheaper than the wall and IMO produce more concrete results faster.

                  • indocon June 18, 2017 at 2:24 pm

                    We should push to get the group deported that is easiest to defend, criminal aliens, it’s not a surprise that other side pushes to legalize the group that is easiest to defend, so called dreamers.

  • roguemapper June 17, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    I see only one attempt at the weekend questions so I think I’ll give it a shot.

    1. Do additional precautions need to be taken with regards to the security of members of Congress?

    At this point I don’t see a need to add security for individual members of Congress aside from high-profile leadership positions that already get a security detail. With regard to just wandering about the DC area I don’t think security details would make much difference. If someone wants to shoot a congressperson, for instance, the congressperson is likely to get shot before a security detail has time to respond. With regard to local events such as town halls, I think that this should be an assessment based on individual circumstances drawing on local law enforcement if need be, which is basically how it is now.

    What I would support and think would be wise is automatically assigning security details to gatherings of congresspersons off Capitol Hill. Say, 5 or more members of Congress, particularly when said gatherings are at locations that are predictable.

    2. In general, do you see hyperbolic and emotional rhetoric in politics as a problem?

    I suspect the reason why there have been so few responses is because this question is so broad and vague. I would argue that the great majority of political rhetoric is hyperbolic and emotional. On the other hand, narrowing this down to explicitly violent rhetoric is also problematic. There’s very little American political rhetoric that’s explicitly violent, at least from politicians themselves, and I’m pretty sure nearly everyone on this site would say that such rhetoric is a problem when it does occur.

    So, I’ll tackle this very complex question from three angles related specifically to political violence.

    First, I think there’s very little that can be done to deter individual “lone wolf” types such as Eric Rudolph, Ted Kaczynski, Dylann Roof, or James Hodgkinson. At this point I’m unconvinced that the incidence rate for such isolated acts of violence is any higher than it’s always been. The common denominator among such individuals appears to be a pattern of antisocial behavior that most would classify as mental illness. The main distinction between them and apolitical mass murderers simply appears to be in their choice of targets. Which is to say, I’m unconvinced that in the absence of a political motivation such types wouldn’t engage in comparable acts but with different targets.

    Second, the risk of organized political violence at this point seems relatively low in the US. There are no political figures (of any consequence) who are calling for such violence. We certainly don’t have anything on the scale of the Wilmington Insurrection in 1898 or the Battle of Blair Mountain in 1921. There’s also little reason to think that US law enforcement and the US military (inc. the Nat. Guard) couldn’t easily snuff out any attempt at organized political violence. It’s tough for me to imagine a scenario of widespread organized political violence in the contemporary US absent a calamitous breakdown of both the economy and government institutions.

    Third, the risk of spontaneous political violence such as clashes between competing protestors or extremist acts associated with otherwise peaceful rallies is hardly a novelty and seems to just be correlated to the number of protests. I would say that by definition protest rallies involve hyperbolic and emotional rhetoric. People obviously wouldn’t be protesting if they weren’t emotionally riled up… Short of condemning violence whenever it does occur and having riot police on hand to respond as necessary I’m unsure what else can be done consistent with a democratic open society.

    To sum up, there are three types of rhetoric that I think are problematic in this regard: (a) to state the obvious, incitements to violence, including implicit whistle calls such as “2nd Amendment solutions” and “battling them in the streets”; (b) rhetoric that delegitimizes the ballot box as the agent of political action; (c) above all else, rhetoric that characterizes one’s opponents as inherently evil/alien and therefore worthy of violent suppression if not outright murder. While I don’t think any of the three are especially elevated right now by historical standards, they are obviously problematic to whatever extent they occur and should be condemned.

    Dem NC-11

    • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 9:07 pm

      I don’t agree with #2 and #3. I hope you are right, but I think we are seeing a early seeds of a wave of political violence. Think 1855 or 1916 or 1965. Cyclical history suggests that we are due for another peak of political violence. (one example of such a prediction is from Peter Turchin’s work) I think your #3, the violent skirmishes between hard left Antifa and the hard right militias/white supremacists are a harbinger of a wave of political violence of some sort. Again I hope I’m wrong.

      Independent, R until November 2016

    • Left Coast Libertarian June 18, 2017 at 6:29 pm

      “The common denominator among such individuals appears to be a pattern of antisocial behavior that most would classify as mental illness.”

      It’s easy to call Hodgkinson mentally ill now but no one called him that before the shooting. His rantings and ravings in social media and to other people are the same as thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, others. There’s nothing I’ve heard that I haven’t read in a Facebook thread. Hodgkinson was arrested 11 years ago for for aggravated discharge of a firearm and domestic battery. The charges were dismissed. He had no incidents since. I’d guess that no one thought he would resort to any sort of physical violence. A year ago he probably wasn’t thinking he’d do anything like this.

      Eric Rudolph was an evil person but there was no way to differentiate Hodgkinson from millions of others.

      • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 6:44 pm

        It’s probably too early to have a full picture of Hodgkinson’s past, but this is worth a read: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/17/us/virginia-shooting-james-hodgkinson-illinois.html

        Dem NC-11

        • Left Coast Libertarian June 18, 2017 at 10:14 pm

          They take a guy who did something heinous and then trot out all the incidents in his life to support an idea that he was mentally unstable. I don’t doubt that he was indeed mentally unstable when he made the attack. But his family in Illinois didn’t think he’d be violent when he was there. I read an interview with a Bernie volunteer who worked with Hodgkinson. He didn’t see it. I read an interview with someone who saw him every morning at the YMCA during the last month. He didn’t see it.

          I’m sure that if Hodgkinson had spent an hour or two with a psychologist or a cop the day before the shooting they would’ve seen it. But a year or two ago they wouldn’t have. It’d be easy if he’d been in a mental institution or seeing a psychologist but he wasn’t.

          Hodgkinson’s anti-Republican/anti-Trump rants on Facebook weren’t any different than those I’ve read in friends’ Facebook posts. None of them are going to take a rifle and shoot Republicans. And that’s the problem with Democratic gun control proposals. None of them would’ve prevented Hodgkinson from having guns. He illegally transported them across state lines but no one caught him.

          • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 10:50 pm

            Just to be clear, with regard to deterrence I was referring only to political rhetoric. I wasn’t making a statement one way or another about gun control. In general, I don’t especially disagree with your point. If I thought that “lone gun” killers were readily distinguishable and therefore identifiable before they start killing then I wouldn’t have said that I think there’s very little that can be done to deter them.

            Dem NC-11

  • cer June 17, 2017 at 6:01 pm

    Update on Rep. Steve Scalise. Things continue to improve.


    Conservative first, Republican second!

  • Boehnerwasright June 17, 2017 at 6:49 pm


    David Clarke is not taking the DHS job, thx good for that. This was an PR-crisis waiting to happen. Now the real questions is, does he even run for re-election? He has such a high profil and is hated by a lot of the left, that a primary win for him in a quite blue county seems unlikely.
    And even if he managed that, there might be enough support and money for a dem to run as an independant in the general.

    • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 8:59 pm

      I doubt Clarke will run again a D (I believe he won in the past by getting a large part to getting a good portion of the black vote against an opponent who previously endorsed GWB). And since he can’t win there as a R, my guess is that he runs for the Senate or something else. I suppose he could run as an independent.

      Independent, R until November 2016

  • w920us June 17, 2017 at 7:11 pm

    Haha, kinda funny.

    Powerball and Mega Millions announce they are leaving bankrupt Illinois

    It does seem Illinois will soon be following Puerto Rico if Congress allows them.

    Is Congress paving way for Illinois to file Bankruptcy?

    R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
    #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

    • cer June 17, 2017 at 8:30 pm

      Illinois…. that is what happens with years of control under a Dem legislature.

      Conservative first, Republican second!

      • w920us June 17, 2017 at 9:12 pm

        I personally don’t understand why progressives/liberals refuse to wanna do anything about public sector unions draining state resources and literally putting states down the road to bankruptcy. I mean if they want states & municipalities to have absolutely no money for any number of programs they champion, they are doing a great job at it by letting state and municipal government workers fleece every available penny from the taxpayers.

        R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
        #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

        • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 9:40 pm

          I don’t agree with them, but the progressives/liberals strongly support unionization with almost no limits. They worship unions as the kind of collective and community unit that they would build society around, even moreso than big government. They see unions as more important than the family or other sources of community. And the pensions promised are benefits given to workers for taking less pay to work for the government.
          So that’s the viewpoint they come from, and why they largely aren’t going to take on public sector unions. It defies common sense in many ways, but I understand from the liberal/progressive mind why they largely rubber stamp everything on unions.

          Independent, R until November 2016

          • jncca June 17, 2017 at 10:08 pm

            The boots on the ground that unions provide to the campaigns they endorse (especially in urban blue states like Illinois, California, and New York) are also very important in creating incentives for legislators who personally are not 100% pro-union.

            24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

            • Indy1975a June 17, 2017 at 10:13 pm

              Good point, this too is an incentive for moderate and pro-business liberal Ds to “not make a fuss” on this issue.

              Independent, R until November 2016

            • Son_of_the_South June 17, 2017 at 10:14 pm

              Right. That used to be countered pretty well by pro-life and 2A activists. That’s fallen off over the years, though. I have to imagine help from the unions has fallen off too as they’ve withered. I’d wager to bet that they still provide more help, though. Civil society is on a serious decline. I don’t like it.

              23, R, DC-AL
              Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

              • jncca June 17, 2017 at 11:17 pm

                At least here in CA the unions are still very powerful.

                24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

                • Son_of_the_South June 17, 2017 at 11:32 pm

                  CA has some of the strongest unions in the country. I’m also more specifically talking about participation in political activity. Volunteerism is down in general, though.

                  23, R, DC-AL
                  Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

                • Manhatlibertarian June 18, 2017 at 12:35 pm

                  I think NY now has the most unionized workforce in the country about 25%. Because the GOP usually controls the State Senate unions often endorse GOP State Senate candidates. Not only traditionally GOP leaning unions like police and fire, but also the civil service union, construction unions, skilled trades unions and sometimes even the healthcare workers union. In return for union $ and boots on the ground during elections, the GOP does “little favors” for these unions during the legislative session. So anti union legislation is definitely not on the agenda in the GOP controlled State Senate. That’s the way NY politics works. But supposedly the NY State pension plan is in better shape than some of the worst states, although it is generous.

                • Left Coast Libertarian June 18, 2017 at 10:18 pm

                  The unions most people think of having power, e.g. electrical workers or longshoremen, aren’t the powerful ones here. The nurses and the teachers wield a lot of power. People think of union power and see big tough guys, but these unions are far more female than those.

              • Republican Michigander June 18, 2017 at 10:05 am

                There’s also a difference between public sector and private sector unions.

                The public sector unions tend to be more leftist outside of law enforcement. Even in conservative areas of my state, I believe MEA is at most 1/3 Republican, and that’s largely due only to the life issue.

                MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

  • shamlet June 17, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    NE-2: Brad Ashford seeking rematch. http://journalstar.com/news/state-and-regional/federal-politics/ashford-seeking-return-to-congress/article_6d61e743-92bc-51fa-aa33-7f17c6bb2f5b.html

    R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

  • shamlet June 17, 2017 at 7:38 pm

    KS-Gov: 2006 nominee and ex-State Sen. Jim Barnett (R) is in. http://www.gctelegram.com/news/state/barnett-announces-plans-to-run-for-governor/article_01855d6a-ad03-5314-8c66-c7d7f4f88ba2.html

    R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

    • Conservative First June 17, 2017 at 8:41 pm

      He’s running for governor.

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 12:54 am

    Why do I still subscribe to the NYT? To read stuff like this.

    A New York Times approved comment today:

    “I think that the shooting of a Republican baseball player who is a member of Congress should be considered as a herald of things to come. If the republicans in Congress start fearing for their lives and the lives of those they hold dear maybe, just maybe, they will stop lighting fires under the feet of the poor and desperate.”

    28, M, R, NY-10

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 7:57 am

    Didn’t know this about the France parliamentary elections today:

    Fun fact: if two candidates are tied in the number of votes, the older person wins.

    28, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 7:58 am

      The turnout at noon on Sunday, 17.75 percent, was far lower than the turnout in 2012 (21.41 percent) and in 2007 (22.89 percent).

      28, M, R, NY-10

  • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 11:37 am

    Heading for GA-06 now. Should be a fun few days.

    • cer June 18, 2017 at 12:25 pm

      Get the GOP registered voters to the polls! 🙂

      Conservative first, Republican second!

    • Greyhound June 18, 2017 at 1:30 pm

      This is really bad for the Tories. This exact situation (unpopular PM that is only sticking around because no one else wants the spot) has preceded every political flip since the 1970s. Odds are very good that Corbyn winds up PM the second he can muster enough support for a no-confidence vote.

      R, 26, CA-18. Nothing smooths over divisions like victory.

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 1:24 pm

    As of 5pm local time turnout was at 35.33 per cent, far behind the 46.42 turn out at the same time five years ago and 49.58 in 2007.

    28, M, R, NY-10

  • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 1:55 pm

    With those turnout numbers, FN should get 3-5 seats. Progress.

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Polls close in all of France.

    28, M, R, NY-10

    • RogueBeaver June 18, 2017 at 2:02 pm

      LREM projected 355-60 on their own, 395-425 with MoDem.

      MTL/Blue Tory/M

  • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    Exit polls have FN at 8 seats. Wildly exceeds my expectations.

    • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:14 pm

      Marine Le Pen won.

      En Marche! Make our planet great again!

      • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 2:15 pm

        She chose the safest seat to run in. She was in the last Parliament as well.

        • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:17 pm

          No – her neice was in the last parliament. Marine is in European Parliament. She ran for French parliament in 2012 but lost narrowly.

          En Marche! Make our planet great again!

          • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 2:18 pm

            Both Marine and her niece were in.

            • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:23 pm

              How do you figure?

              En Marche! Make our planet great again!

            • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 2:24 pm

              You’re right. I thought she had the 2nd seat. Now I’m really curious who held the other FN seat.

              • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 3:09 pm

                The other FN seat besides the one held by Marion is held by Gilbert Collard in Gard’s 2nd constituency; he’s one of the two FN members who have been declared elected so far (along with Louis Aliot). I haven’t seen a call in Marine’s constituency, although judging by the good FN performances elsewhere it would be very strange for her not to be elected at this point.

                Also, my first post; I’ve been lurking here for quite a while. Hello guys!

                Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

                • shamlet June 18, 2017 at 3:11 pm


                  R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

                • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 3:24 pm

                  19ème circonscription du Nord
                  ÉLU Sébastien CHENU

                  Also this one.

                  4 have been declared already other than Le Pen.

                  28, M, R, NY-10

                  • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 3:34 pm

                    Yes, the count is going hot and heavy right now. It’s up to 7, plus one ex-FN independent.

                    Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

  • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    En Marche has a clear majority, but this result is a bit disappointing. There’s a clear opposition on the right and the left.

    En Marche! Make our planet great again!

    • FiveAngels June 18, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Awww, a clear opposition, that’s so terrible!

      • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:30 pm

        There will be no post-partisan nirvana. I was at least hoping the fringe far-left and far-right would not have a voice.

        En Marche! Make our planet great again!

        • FiveAngels June 18, 2017 at 2:31 pm

          I’m sure the way things are going the European Commission will try to abolish free elections within next 20 years and you will have it your way.

          • Left Coast Libertarian June 18, 2017 at 10:22 pm

            I hope the far left and far right always have a loud voice in every country. There’s a word for countries where the far left and/or the far right don’t have a voice, dictatorships.

    • Greyhound June 18, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      If a completely new party getting a strong legislative majority in literally its first election ever counts as “a bit disappointing”, you might be setting your expectations a little too high.

      R, 26, CA-18. Nothing smooths over divisions like victory.

    • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 5:51 pm

      Setting aside the low turnout, I think that this result is actually far better for Macron from a perception standpoint. En Marche! is supposed to be a centrist party. Having a clear opposition on both the Right and the Left is the way for that to happen. If the opposition was more lopsided, say ~20 seats for the Left and ~100 seats for the right, then En Marche! would be far more likely to be perceived as the de facto Left party.

      Dem NC-11

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Meyer Habib re-elected in the Israeli riding. (Français Ă©tablis hors de France – 8ème circonscription)

    28, M, R, NY-10

  • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    Watching Marine Le Pen’s speech now.

    If the National Front wants to be successful in the future they need rebranding – new name and get rid of the Le Pens.

    En Marche! Make our planet great again!

    • FiveAngels June 18, 2017 at 2:47 pm

      She is up there with Carly Fiorina in non-presidential face category. But thankfully Marion Marechal is cute.

      • jncca June 18, 2017 at 3:27 pm

        That’s not her problem. Angela Merkel may win that category and she’s won some near-landslides.

        24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

        • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 3:40 pm

          Are we just using this term as a euphemism for women over 45? Because I hope and don’t think that isn’t something voters hold against their politicians.

          I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

          • jncca June 18, 2017 at 3:53 pm

            I wasn’t. Kamala Harris is 52 and attractive. Mary Landrieu was always pretty attractive for her age. Susan Collins is also pretty attractive for a woman in her 60s.

            Fiveangels implied that ugly women can’t win major elections and I gave a counter-example.

            24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

            • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 4:12 pm

              I would not call Merkel or Carly or Le Pen ugly. And I strongly dislike Merkel.

              Especially in America, all of them are above-average, like almost all of our politicians. Some of the right-wing attacks on Clinton’s appearance were both unfortunate and false.

              The average 50 year old American women is quite fat, likely either alcoholic or hooked on opiods, has had a lifetime of hormonal issues (leading to celluite on top of the fat), and has suffered rather high amounts of sunlight skin damage.

              This is all of course highly correlated with poverty, and very few poor people go into politics. Skincare and fitness are quite expensive (probably my third highest expense after taxes and rent).

              I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

              • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 4:37 pm

                About 2.6 million Americans (of both sexes) are addicted to some form of opiate (whether prescription or street), and further 13.8 million (of both sexes) have a “drinking problem”, which is defined somewhat more broadly than alcoholism — supposing you trust government numbers, since this is from .gov websites. Both figures have some overlap, as well. There are about 157 million women in the US, so suggesting the average woman of any age is either addicted to an opiate or an alcoholic is…rather disconnected from reality. Unless you suppose there’s a very large cover-up.

                The median weight of a 50-year-old American woman is 70 kilograms, or ~155 pounds; median height is 162 cm, so while the median 50-year-old woman is overweight by BMI, she isn’t obese — though you did say “average” and this data very likely has a long tail to the right.

                Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

                • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 5:01 pm

                  Most of those statistics are heavily heavily concentrated among certain age and demographic groups (ie middle aged white women). Of course, as we’ve heard, statistics of depression and substance abuse are also very low among immigrants women, them having been spared the ravages of growing up in America, masking America’s health problems. And yeah, there’s a lot of binge drinking and opiod dependence that doesn’t rise to the level of medical emergency (iirc 1/4th of middle aged women are binge drinkers, but it’s not quite a medical emergency).

                  And yeah, I’d consider someone who is 5’3 and 155 to be quite fat, especially for a woman (BMI can be off if you have muscle mass, but most women do not.) They are not medically obese, but that’s a medical crisis. They are still fat and will suffer from health problems, including sexual dysfunction, loss of self-esteem, depression, etc.

                  One might wonder how much this “OMG the American healthcare system is so horrible and more expensive than other countries, so we need single-payer ASAP” would still be plausible if we weren’t so fat and depressed and hooked on every single pharmaceutical imaginable. Our citizens come into the healthcare system with well, more pre-existing conditions than any other people.

                  I was actually talking to someone a few months ago who works in one of these agencies fighting the opiod crisis, and she told me that one big reason we have such a huge painkiller problem is that we also have a massive massive pain problem as well – our legitimate demand for painkillers is also way higher than other countries because of our terrible health!

                  I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

                  • californianintexas June 18, 2017 at 11:23 pm

                    Even women like me, a little taller than average but weighing quite a bit less than average, aren’t immune to health issues. Some women undergo menopause, natural or surgical, in their late 30s.

                    I too am amazed at how many analgesics and hormone-based gels and patches pharma companies work with. Pain (as well as sleep and sexual issues) = big $$$. I wonder how a single-payer system would handle the Mount Everest-sized pile of prescription drugs we have.

                    34, Female, Libertarian, UT-02 (hometown CA-31), theelectionsgeek.com

                    • Jon June 19, 2017 at 7:23 pm

                      They prescribe less. A UK citizen specifically mentioned that antibiotic prescriptions there are for 3 days instead of 10.

                      45, M, MO-02

      • Izengabe June 19, 2017 at 12:11 am

        Let’s be clear Marine LePen’s problem is not her face it is her fascism.

        Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

  • Manhatlibertarian June 18, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    Some more info on how the Ga6 early vote breaks down. Of the 140308 early votes, 114537 were in person early votes and 25771 were mail ballots. My guess is that the in person early votes are more favorable to Ossoff than the mail ones, based on past elections where Dems seem to prefer in person early voting over other kinds of voting; but who knows for sure in this election. By the way here are still 8391 absentee ballots outstanding, so a few thousand more mail ballots could still trickle in. This weekend Ossoff campaigned with Georgia AA Congressman John Lewis, probably looking to increase AA turnout for his candidacy. Handel campaigned with former Gov Purdue and the former Congressman from the district, Tom Price. These are people who might help her hold the GOP base in the district and help prevent GOP defections to Ossoff, who tries to keep portraying himself as an economic centrist. We’ll see. Price carried the CD by 23 points while Trump barely won it in 2016, so Handel associating herself with Price is a good move in a close race. But is it enough to get her across the finish line Tuesday?

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 3:00 pm

      I remember vaguely that the mail ballots were very pro-Ossoff.

      28, M, R, NY-10

      • Manhatlibertarian June 18, 2017 at 3:20 pm

        Not saying the Ga6 mail ballots are pro Handel just that my best guess is that they are not as pro Ossoff as the in person early voting. I am just basing this on what I recall about past elections in general where in person early voting tends to be the most Dem leaning form of voting. But as I said in my comment, in this election who knows if things will go “according to script.”

        • rayinma June 19, 2017 at 12:03 am

          My guess is if you excluded military ballots mail voting would in general be even more Dem than in-person.

  • indocon June 18, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    Liberal press on continuous hunt looking for great white hope for Democrats

    Question is, how many of those 220k Trump-Kander voters were anti Blunt/Washington/GOP Establishment in reality?

    • fzw June 18, 2017 at 3:20 pm

      The exit polling suggested that many (most?) of the Trump-Kander voters hated Trump but hated Clinton more. They’re probably some of the people responsible for his slide in approval

      NY-23 from MO-3. Soon to be RI-1.
      #MADGA (Make a Divided Government Again)

  • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 3:33 pm

    Some thoughts on the French parliamentary elections:
    1. Macron gets his majority (and it’ll be bigger than it currently looks for two reasons: Paris, where macronismo is very strong, is still out, and there are many LR/PS/independent candidates who ran as explicit Macron supporters), but gets a shot across the bow; he under-performs expectations fairly significantly, and it does seem that a group of voters were mobilized to turn out purely against him; some of the results are difficult to explain otherwise.
    2. Establishment parties survive. The old establishment parliamentary right, consisting of LR+UDF, will be by far the largest opposition to Macron; this will be an awkward position for them since many of his proposed economic reforms are essentially stolen from their agenda, and opposing him on European integration will divide their base. The PS survives, and indeed maintains their position as the largest left-wing party, getting far more seats than the melenchonistas, who are currently trailing the decrepit Communists in terms of number of seats (but will probably get ahead of them once the less fashionable parts of Paris come in). Ultimately, this was a large missed opportunity for the far-left. Of the PS’s traditional coalition partners/hangers-on, the PRG survives, buoyed by its support in overseas constituencies, while the EELV (the Greens) is essentially dead as a force; they one 1 seat, which was held by Eric Alauzet, a very explicit Macron supporter who essentially wants to turn the party into a second MoDem. Competition between pro-Macron liberals and more leftish watermelons is likely in the party in the next years.
    3. The FN had their best result ever under the current system; discounting the 1986 elections, held under proportional representation, their old high was 2 (won in 2012); they have currently won 7 and are not yet finished; they will probably finish in the high single digits, as most of their targets are already in. (The 7 in question are Ludovic Pajot, Bruno Bilde, Jose Evrard, Marine Le Pen, Sebastien Chenu, Louis Aliot, and Gilbert Collard). An ex-FN independent, Jacques Bompard, has also won a seat. This is disappointing compared to the presidential result, where Marine won 40something constituencies, and disappointing compared to the stated goal of 15 (which is what it takes to be an “official party” in the National Assembly), but it is gains, and gains for a party which is not used to them. They can take solace from the fact that they were clearly able to win the anti-Macron vote in places where they were his opposition, and as his polar opposites are in a position where they could benefit over the next 5 years. Le Pen’s leadership of the party will almost certainly continue.

    Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 3:43 pm

      Thanks and welcome!

      28, M, R, NY-10

    • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 3:46 pm

      Should also be noted that it was a very good night for Corsican nationalism, which won 3/4 seats on the island — I don’t believe they’ve ever won a National Assembly seat before under the present system. The two old Corsican nationalist parties (a right-wing autonomist one and a left-wing separatist one) formed a coalition in 2015 and have since been going from strength to strength.

      Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

  • jncca June 18, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    France — Electoral Map:

    The Republicans were really screwed by coming in third in much of the southeast in the first round. Macron’s party has taken a majority (or near-majority) in this most conservative part of France, while taking a minority in the second most conservative part (east central) since the FN is weaker there. Guess that’s how runoffs can work.

    24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

  • Kyle98632 June 18, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    In WA-3 news, Democrat Teresa Purcell, who managed to lose her race for one of the LD-19’s state House seats (held by Democrats for generations), is considering running against Congresswoman JHB. She would join a growing list of small fry Democrats and Republicans running for the seat, but she has the added benefit of having state AG Bob Ferguson (D) pursuing campaign finance charges against her.


    29, Born and raised in WA-03 (Represented by the wonderful Jaime Herrera Beutler).

  • jncca June 18, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    With most major cities plus the Paris suburbs yet to report:

    Macron + explicit allies 234, Total Right 115, Total Left 52, FN + ally 8

    24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

    • w920us June 18, 2017 at 4:27 pm

      The Center Right is doing better than I expected.

      R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
      #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

      • GerGOP June 18, 2017 at 4:36 pm

        Well, the majority for Macron wont change the fact that there will be massive Protests on the streets in the matter a few weeks.

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 4:27 pm

    Only 43% turnout.

    28, M, R, NY-10

    • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 5:01 pm

      It looks as if a good number of 1st round Left voters simply skipped the 2nd round if their candidate didn’t get through. A significant number of seats where En Marche!+Left was leading in the first round are going to the Right in the 2nd round. So, Macron gets his solid landslide but at the low end of projections following the first round.

      Dem NC-11

  • GerGOP June 18, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    Scalise is apparently awake, per his Twitter.

  • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 5:02 pm

    Some more results from prominent French constituencies:
    – In Pyrenees-Atlantique’s 4th, minor-party presidential candidate Jean Lassalle, of Resistons! (received 1.21% in the first round) was reelected to his own seat — he had been a MoDem member in 2012 and 2007 (and before that, UDF) but left the party for his vanity presidential run. This also goes to show how different macronismo is from MoDem’s old base; only 1 seat, Bayrou’s own, voted for them in 2012 and 2017. Although Bayrou endorsed Macron, polls suggested that a plurality of his 2012 support may have actually gone to Fillon.
    – In Rhone’s 6th (a wealthy but left-wing Lyon constituency), PS incumbent, former minister, writer of a law to ban public homophobic remarks, likely future presidential candidate, and self-identified “Muslim atheist” Najat Vallaud-Belkacem was reelected against celebrity LREM candidate Bruno Bonnell (the host of the French version of The Apprentice, who stoked comparisons to Trump) after trailing massively in the first round; Bonnell bragged in a debate that he had fired more people than any other legislative candidate in France. Not very smart.
    – In Essonne, two prominent politicians have both claimed reelection against the odds, though no calls have come in either constituency: Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, the founder of his own right-wing party (Debout La France), and another minor presidential candidate (he had been Marine Le Pen’s choice for PM) was reelected after trailing LREM in the first round in what should be a very pro-Macron constituency; now-independent former PS Prime Minister Manuel Valls, who Macron stood aside against, has claimed to have defeated his melenchonista opponent in a constituency that is very left-wing. Both men are ambitious and will be prominent in the future if they have actually been reelected.
    – In Paris’s 18th, a farcical race played out as LREM did not run a candidate but both PS and LR nominated hardcore pro-Macron candidates, leading to both candidates touting endorsements from Macron’s Cabinet ministers and figures within the new LREM party and so forth. PS’s candidate was Myriam El Khomri, the author of the controversial El Khomri law (which reduced overtime pay nationwide), while LR ran local city councillor Pierre-Yves Bournazel. It seems that Bournazel has won in a pretty left-wing constituency, off of either abstention or actual crossing over from the radical left, for whom El Khomri is a massive bete noire (like, possibly more than Valls is).
    – Prominent “moderate” LR former cabinet member Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet (a former rising star damaged by a string of defeats: in the most recent Paris mayoral election and in the 2016 presidential primary) decided to move to a safe seat to stay in the National Assembly: Paris’s 2nd, traditionally one of the most right-wing seats in France and formerly represented by one Francois Fillon, who is retiring. Unfortunately for her, this is an area that has swung massively towards Macron, and it looks like she has been defeated by utter no-name candidate Gilles Le Gendre, of LREM. This is particularly dumb since Morizet is exactly the sort of LR politician Macron might’ve welcomed into his party.
    – We’re up to 9 FN seats, with Bompard and Dupont-Aignan as sympathetic independents, but it looks like FN is pretty much all out of targets.

    Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

    • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 5:04 pm

      And Valls’ seat has a call; he’s been reelected, just 50.3-49.7 against a France Insoumise (Melenchon cultist) candidate.

      LREM+MoDem have a majority of seats in the Assembly, going by calls. Based on what’s left LREM will most likely have a majority on its own. Not exactly what polls were predicting (which had LREM+MoDem>430), but still a very comfortable win, especially for a party that didn’t exist 2 years ago.

      Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

    • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 5:39 pm

      Paris’s 18th has a call.
      2012: PS (El Khomri) over LR (Bournazel), 69-31
      2017: LR (Bournazel) over PS (El Khomri), 53-47

      Same candidates; 22-point swing (or 44 if you use the British “swing”). And not exactly in the midst of an LR landslide (in fact, in the midst of a pretty terrible result in the rest of Paris for LR, losing decades-old strongholds to macronismo). Looks like El Khomri is going to be finished with politics.

      Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

      • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 6:52 pm

        El Khomri really pissed off a lot of the left apparently. I guess this goes to show that a successful Third Way movement couldn’t have come from the Valls/El Khomri wing of the Socialist Party and had to come from a new movement altogether.

        Funny thing about that race – Macron endorsed El Khomri while PM Philippe endorsed Bournazel. There was no LREM candidate.

        En Marche! Make our planet great again!

    • Vosmyorka June 18, 2017 at 6:10 pm

      Partial results lie sometimes — although Valls/Dupont-Aignan/Bournazel indeed all won, it seems Najat Vallaud-Belkacem (“Muslim atheist”) has in fact lost to Bruno Bonnell (the former host of the French version of the Apprentice, a wealthy businessman who bragged about having fired more people than any other legislative candidate), and by a fairly convincing margin at that (60-40). Macronismo swept every seat in Lyon, and also every seat in its suburbs (all but 2 in the department of Rhone; the two more rural northern seats went for LR).

      Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3.

    • jncca June 18, 2017 at 8:15 pm

      Thanks for all this. We are probably the two people here most interested in French politics so I appreciate the detail; you clearly have more knowledge than I do and I’d say I know quite a bit.

      24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    MSNBC host Joy Reid implies that Scalise had it coming.


    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • cer June 18, 2017 at 6:20 pm

      Joy Reid has been getting ripped to shreds all weekend on twitter by conservatives. By the way, I find her totally disgusting…. just saying.

      What I find disturbing, how silent many on the left have been.

      Conservative first, Republican second!

    • w920us June 18, 2017 at 6:47 pm

      I personally love how liberals and their nutty progressives expect members of the Law & Order party, to you know, respect law & order. But look the other way for their own supporters.

      R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
      #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

  • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 7:02 pm

    So the exit polls knocked it out of the ballpark once again?

    28, M, R, NY-10

  • segmentation_fault June 18, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    Why did Manuel Valls run for re-election? He’s like John McCain I guess. Usually when a politician suffers a string of humiliating defeats they want to withdraw from politics.

    He was the PM and he brought Emmanuel Macron into his government as Economy minister to push economic liberalizations. Macron was his protĂ©gĂ© but then he used the platform Valls gave him to launch a presidential campaign against Valls. Then Valls lost his own party’s primary. Then he was kicked out of the Socialist Party and when he asked to join En Marche he was told he was not wanted! Now he wants to come back to the National Assembly where his level of importance has been reduced from #1 to somewhere around #350. I would go home after all that!

    En Marche! Make our planet great again!

    • jncca June 18, 2017 at 8:17 pm

      Comebacks happen. Valls could see his star rebound eventually. It’s uncommon but not impossible.

      24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

      • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 8:34 pm

        Ariel Sharon said that politics is like a wheel. Sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down, but you need to stay on the wheel.

        28, M, R, NY-10

        • jncca June 18, 2017 at 8:39 pm

          Many Israeli PMs know well that staying on the wheel have benefits. Good quote though, I hadn’t heard it.

          24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

  • jncca June 18, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    So with nearly everything called, here’s what we have.

    341 Macron and MoDem (Macron’s party in all but name) (+339!)
    136 Republicans and allies (-93)
    44 Socialist and allies (-287!)
    27 Melenchon’s France Unbowed movement and the explicitly Communist allies (+17)
    10 National Front and allies (+7)

    Macron and allies have gone 12 for 17 in Paris itself (all others are metro area more than city), 4 for 6 in Bordeaux, 5 for 5 in Toulouse, 3 for 4 in Marseille, 1 for 2 in Nice, 7 for 7 in Lyon, 3 for 3 in Strasbourg, and 3 for 7 in Lille. In the Paris suburbs they took 45 out of 60.

    So an overwhelming showing in the urban areas.

    24, CA-6. Part Obama, Part May, Part Christian Democrat.

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 8:35 pm

      Thanks for the update!

      28, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 8:38 pm

      So the exit poll overestimated EM and underestimated LR a little.

      28, M, R, NY-10

      • GerGOP June 18, 2017 at 8:45 pm

        Also FN doing okayish. Not the 15 they needed, but still okayish.

    • w920us June 18, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      Didn’t think FN would hit double digits.

      R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
      #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

  • Manhatlibertarian June 18, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    Just heard on CNN a vehicle in London hurt several pedestrians. Don’t know details doesn’t appear to be an accident but not clear.

    • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 9:26 pm

      This isn’t a general breaking news site, but since it’s here anyhow, it’s worth noting that the pedestrians that were hit were reportedly Muslims leaving a mosque after prayers. The driver who has been apprehended was reportedly a white man.

      Dem NC-11

      • shamlet June 18, 2017 at 9:39 pm

        Yes, let’s please try to cut down on the amount of general news here that isn’t directly electorally relevant.

        R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

  • shamlet June 18, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    PA-Gov: Businessman Kris Hart (R) drops out days after entering for not meeting residency requirements. http://www.politicspa.com/hart-exits-governors-race-after-residency-question/83481/

    R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

    • TheWizardOf144 June 18, 2017 at 10:02 pm

      Lol. I’m friends with the dude on Facebook.

    • edtorres04 June 18, 2017 at 10:45 pm

      Any relation to Melissa? A former rising star.

      • w920us June 18, 2017 at 10:57 pm

        Ha, I remember her infamous abandoned parked car!

        R, South Philly, 47, Gay, WFU Alum
        #TrumpVoter #NeverHillary

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 11:08 pm

    Ad running in GA-6. I actually have no idea how it is going to play. I could see it successfully turning out voters or backfiring. Or both!


    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • MosheM June 18, 2017 at 11:24 pm

      There is too little substance.

      28, M, R, NY-10

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 18, 2017 at 11:47 pm

    CEO of outdoor clothing corporation Patagonia pledging to be part of the anti-Trump “resistance” by spending millions of its profits in order to fund Democratic candidates across the Mountain West states.


    It’s actually an interesting question as to who purchases more outdoor clothing – liberal urbanites who move to the Bay Area/Denver/Portland because “omg I love being in nature”, or rural conservatives who actually live there.

    I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • roguemapper June 18, 2017 at 11:57 pm

      The relevant question is who purchases more outdoor clothing from Patagonia.

      Dem NC-11

      • Son_of_the_South June 19, 2017 at 12:04 am

        I’d assume it’s more the hippie, lefty types (and the bros). In my experience, rural people prefer North Face or something from Bass Pro. Hell, rural people on a budget still love Carhartt (that stuff has come broken-in and pre-beat-to-shit since well before stone-washed jeans were cool).

        23, R, DC-AL
        Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • SCDem4 June 19, 2017 at 12:11 am

          I only ever see college kids wearing Patagonia here in SC. Most of them tend to be in Greek Life and skew conservative based on my experiences with them in class. Similar to Yeti, I guess.

          Pragmatic Liberal, SC-04

          • Son_of_the_South June 19, 2017 at 12:19 am

            Yeah. See my post down below. Basically, in the east that’s the demo that buys it. Out west (where I assume they do most of their sales), it’s more the outdoorsy lefty types, though there’s some overlap there. Witness the recent Coors Light ‘Climb on’ commercials. They feature young men doing outdoorsy things. However, one of them features not just a Yeti cooler, but also mainly focuses on Coors’ ‘green’ initiatives. Also, before the mountains logo appears in full, it as a recycling logo.

            23, R, DC-AL
            Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 19, 2017 at 12:13 am

          I’m actually surprised. I had almost exclusively associated (black) North Face jackets with college-aged women in the Northeast (much like uggs, black leggings, oversized coffee mugs, macbook pros with excessive stickering, and iPhones with cracked screens). Shows what I know about rural culture.

          I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

          • Son_of_the_South June 19, 2017 at 12:25 am

            Well, that’s the more upper and middle-class rural people. Poorer rural people tend to buy outdoors wear from Bass Pro, Cabela’s, etc. Tradesmen tend to wear durable work clothes like Carhartt, which is made to be outdoors anyway.

            23, R, DC-AL
            Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

            • Republican Michigander June 19, 2017 at 10:40 am

              “””Poorer rural people tend to buy outdoors wear from Bass Pro, Cabela’s, etc.”””

              Cabela’s is known for two things. One is being a giant outdoors place. The other thing is that it is expensive unless I get lucky on a sale. I did a shirt there for $5.

              MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

              • Son_of_the_South June 19, 2017 at 3:26 pm

                I’m just telling you what I saw in rural Indiana, which was a lot of beat-up Bass Pro hats and faded Cabela jackets.

                23, R, DC-AL
                Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • roguemapper June 19, 2017 at 12:22 am

          Yup, Carhartt was the brand that first popped to my mind. There’s a great chance that I’m the only consumer within easy walking distance that Patagonia might give a damn about. lol

          Dem NC-11

      • Son_of_the_South June 19, 2017 at 12:06 am

        Also, I do have to say that from a business perspective this can’t be that smart. Even if the lefties are a big part of their business, they still need to sell to other people. Then again, there does seem to be quite a lot of this going around, so maybe I’m missing something.

        23, R, DC-AL
        Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • VastBlightKingConspiracy June 19, 2017 at 12:41 am

          I can think of very few businesses where taking an explicitly political stance is smart beyond maybe “we want to work w/ the government on this generic goal that everyone likes” (like helping the disabled or fighting poverty or something).

          That being said, CEOs aren’t really accountable in the United States anymore. Most investors have largely stopped exercising active control of companies and most CEOs are incredibly expensive to replace (and float down with massive bonuses and golden parachutes anyways). There isn’t really anything stopping them from promoting elite political opinion over their own profits, even the profit motive (since global elites are so wealthy, money is largely meaningless to them ala Chelsea Clinton). And shareholder derivative suits are pretty much all quasi-fradulent shakedowns.

          Most CEOs probably care more about being popular at cocktail parties than maximizing returns to shareholders and workers. They’d put America last even if it was good for their bottom-line.

          I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Republican.

    • Son_of_the_South June 18, 2017 at 11:58 pm

      You’re actually leaving out a significant group, at least when it comes to this brand – bros. Patagonia is nicknamed ‘Fratagonia’ for a reason.

      23, R, DC-AL
      Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

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