Political Roundup for July 13, 2017


AL-Sen: Rep. Mo Brooks (R) has become a strong supporter of President Trump, but during last year’s presidential primary season, he criticized Trump, calling him a “serial adulterer” and saying he couldn’t be trusted. Now some of those anti-Trump comments are being used against him in an ad by the Mitch McConnell-backed Senate Leadership Fund. Context is important however-Brooks was a supporter of Sen. Ted Cruz (R) and was attacking Trump at a time when the two were still fighting each other in the primaries. The McConnell-backed PAC is supporting Sen. Luther Strange (R).

FL-Sen: Gov. Rick Scott (R) has not announced a run for US Senate yet, but it’s said to be an “open secret” that he is planning on running and it’s just a matter of making it official. Waiting a long time to get in would not be a surprise-Scott waited until April of 2010 to enter the Republican nomination for governor, although strategists say he will probably need to enter the Senate race a little sooner. No other major Republican is apparently considering the race, meaning the nomination is likely Scott’s for the taking.

IN-Sen: Rep. Todd Rokita (R) has raised about $1 million for the Senate race against Sen. Joe Donnelly (D) next year and has $2.3 million cash on hand. As his campaign noted, it is more money than Sen. Todd Young (R) had raised at the same point two years ago for his successful race. Rep. Luke Messer (R), who is also considering a bid for Senate, has not released his 2nd Quarter fundraising numbers, yet but has a strong fundraising team, including Greg Pence, brother of the vice president and ended the previous quarter with a slight cash on hand lead.

MA-Sen: State Rep. Geoff Diehl (R) plans to make it official on Aug. 1 that he is running for US Senate. He will face scientist, entrepreneur and self-proclaimed “inventor of e-mail” Shiva Ayyadurai for the Republican nomination to face Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D).

MI-Sen: Entertainer Kid Rock(real name Robert Ritchie) claimed yesterday that a website, kidrockforsenate.com suggesting that he is running for US Senate is indeed real and promises a “major announcement in the near future”. Former state Supreme Court Justice Bob Young, Jr. and businesswoman Lena Epstein, former co-chair of Donald Trump’s Michigan campaign are both running already for the GOP nomination to take on Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D).


CA-7: Business executive and Marine veteran Andrew Grant (R) is challenging Rep. Ami Bera (D). The seat is one of the few offensive opportunities Republicans have in California-Bera has never won by more than 3 points in his 3 terms. Bera won by 2 points over Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones (R) in 2016 as Hillary Clinton won the district by 11 points.

NM-2: State Rep. Yvette Herrell (R) of Alamogordo is the first Republican to jump into this open seat race. Herrell is considered one of the more conservative members in the state House. State Sen. Cliff Pirtle (R) of Roswell and Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn (R) are also considering getting into the Republican primary. Attorney David Baake and military veteran and progressive activist Tony Martinez, both of Las Cruces are running for the Democratic nomination. Both entered the race before Rep. Steve Pearce (R) decided to run for governor-other more high-profile Democrats may now decide to run as well.

NY-24: Community leader Anne Messenger has become the first Democrat to announce a run against Rep. John Katko (R). Katko has fared very well in what had been a competitive district-defeating Rep. Dan Maffei (D) by 19 points in 2014 and Colleen Deacon (D) by 21 points last year as the district shifted to the right at the presidential level with Clinton winning it only by 4 whereas Obama won it in 2012 by 16.

WA-8: Jason Rittereiser (D), a former King County Deputy Prosecutor is running to challenge Rep. Dave Reichert (R). Hillary Clinton won the district by 3 points last year, and the DCCC is targeting the seat, although Reichert won by a fairly comfortable 60-40 margin last year  and has not been seriously challenged since 2010. Issaquah City Council member Tola Marts (D) is running as are military veteran Poga Ahn (D) and former candidate Thomas Cramer (D).


CO-Gov: After Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D) bowed out of the race this week, now LG Donna Lynne (D) is reconsidering an earlier decision not to run. Lynne was appointed to the Lieutenant Governor’s office last year after then LG Joe Garcia (D) resigned to take another job and she said in her first news conference after being appointed that she did not intend to run for governor. Lynne’s decision to reconsider indicates some nervousness among Democrats that their current primary field, including Rep. Jared Polis (D), former state Sen. Mike Johnston (D) and former State Treasurer Cary Kennedy (D) may pull the party too far to the left. Some supporters of Perlmutter have reached out to Lynne to get her to run. In news on the Republican side, Attorney General Cynthia Coffman (R), who recently filed for divorce from her husband Rep. Mike Coffman (R) is sounding more serious about running. She would join an already crowded field of Republicans running or expected to run.

CT-Gov: Two candidates, one Democrat and one Republican have announced they are joining this open seat race. Middletown Mayor Dan Drew (D) is the first major Democrat in the race-several others are considering. Former US Comptroller General David Walker is joining the race for the Republican nomination-Walker was an unsuccessful candidate for the GOP nomination for Lieutenant Governor in 2014 and considered running for president as a third party candidate in 2012, running on the theme of fiscal responsibility. Walker joins Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti, Trumbell First Selectman Tim Herbst and state Rep. Prasad Srinivasan in the Republican race.

NM-Gov/Sen/NM-1: LG John Sanchez (R), announced yesterday he would not run for governor, endorsing Rep. Steve Pearce (R). Sanchez was one of the few other big-name Republicans thought to be considering the race-Albuquerque Mayor Richard Barry (R) may still get in. Sanchez is still thought to be considering running for US Senate against Sen. Martin Heinrich (D), or going for the open NM-1 seat, being left open by Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D), who is running for governor.

WI-Gov: Businessman Andy Gronik is the first Democrat to enter the race for governor against Gov. Scott Walker (R). Among other policy proposals, Gronik says he would seek to repeal Act 10, the law that eliminated collective bargaining for public workers and prompted numerous protests and recall elections for state legislators and Walker himself. Many other Democrats are still considering, including State School Superintendent Tony Evers, Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout (D) and several others.

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    • edtorres04 July 13, 2017 at 7:17 am

      Curt Hennig Mr. Perfect, who is also MN born and raised, at one time did a West Texas Country music gimmick. This is what has inspired Stewart.

    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 11:03 am

      If this Minnesotan Confederate sympathizer win the GOP nomination I think we can move VA-Sen to Safe Dem.

      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

      • HS July 13, 2017 at 2:22 pm

        I know both Ingraham and Fiorina were looking at it earlier. But who knows if they are still interested?

  • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 7:34 am

    Sorry to be nitpicky but Clinton won Katko’s seat narrowly and Obama crushed Romney there.

    R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

    • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 7:46 am

      It’s not nitpicky, I read it and was like “Romney won NY-24?”

      Like much of upstate NY it took a large rightward turn in 2016 (not left). Pretty sure Katko is safe R regardless.

    • GoBigRedState July 13, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      Sorry-I misread the numbers(had the Democrat and Republican numbers turned around). It was the kind of district I thought Trump would have improved on, so I was surprised when it seemed like it went the other way.

      45, NE-1, #NeverTrump in 2016, support Trump now as situation warrants

  • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 7:59 am

    PPP’s “Save my care Poll” (seriously?) in Iowa found

    Ernst at 47/41 Approval/Disapproval
    Trump 46/49 Approval/Disapproval


    “I’m going to read you a few things that the
    Senate Republicans health care repeal bill
    would do, and after each one, ask if it gives
    you very serious concerns, somewhat serious
    concerns, or no real concerns. Here’s the first
    one: The Senate bill will be passed without any
    public hearings from health care experts or
    constituents who would be impacted by repeal.
    Democrats were excluded from it and it would
    pass with only Republicans in support. Does
    hearing this give you very serious concerns,
    somewhat serious concerns, no real concerns,
    or are you not sure?”

    Isn’t that pretty much the definition of a push poll?

    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 8:16 am

      They should’ve asked them how they’ll feel if the health care bill goes down in flames since that seems far more plausible right now.

      Dem NC-11

      • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 8:23 am

        It’s still a push poll in my books.

    • OGGoldy July 13, 2017 at 9:12 am

      Message testing polling and informed ballot polling is always something around in US politics. Whether it’s useful is another matter of debate.

      • Ryan_in_SEPA July 13, 2017 at 10:32 am

        Their value is determining whether a message works or not for a particular audience.

        31, PA-6, fiscally conservative communitarian, Giant Meteor 2020 - Just End It Already!

    • adam_c July 13, 2017 at 9:58 am

      Not a push poll. Push polls are not polls. They are messaging disguised as a poll. Characteristics of push polls include trying to reach a large group (not just a sample) and not collecting/analyzing results from the push poll.

      “In a push poll, large numbers of voters are contacted with little effort made to actually collect and analyze voters’ response data. Instead, the push poll is a form of telemarketing-based propaganda and rumor mongering, masquerading as an opinion poll. Push polls may rely on innuendo, or information gleaned from opposition research on the political opponent of the interests behind the poll.”


      This is far more like an informed ballot poll. The usefulness of informed ballot polls can differ, but the polling company does try to reach a random sample and keep the results.

    • prsteve11 July 13, 2017 at 10:45 am

      This poll seems to confirm that President Trump is still more popular in the Midwest compared to other regions.

      SC-03, Conservative Republican

    • aggou July 13, 2017 at 11:56 am

      Shockingly his approval rating is better than the exit polls in Nov.

      He had a -20% disapproval rating when he won.

  • MosheM July 13, 2017 at 8:23 am



    29, M, R, NY-10

    • w920us July 13, 2017 at 9:03 am

      Indiana is one state that won’t be forgiving of this.

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

    • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 11:03 am

      Great campaign issue, god-awful economics issue.

      I can’t wait to pay more for everything.

  • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 9:15 am

    WI-Gov: I find it a bit curious that the Dems havent been able to draw an a list candidate by now…

    • Tekzilla July 13, 2017 at 9:32 am

      All eyes are on Evers at this point. Remember Wisconsin Democrats have had their bench destroyed the past 10 years or so.

      36/M/NY-01 (D)

  • RogueBeaver July 13, 2017 at 9:48 am

    MO-SEN: Hawley could decide by early next month. http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/12/politics/josh-hawley-claire-mccaskill/index.html

    QC/Blue Tory/M

  • MosheM July 13, 2017 at 10:15 am

    A federal appeals court on Thursday overturned the 2015 corruption conviction of Sheldon Silver, the once-powerful New York State Assembly speaker who obtained nearly $4 million in illicit payments in return for taking official actions that benefited others, according to evidence presented at his trial.

    In vacating Mr. Silver’s conviction, the appellate court cited a United States Supreme Court ruling last year involving Bob McDonnell, a former Republican governor of Virginia, that narrowed the definition of the kind of official conduct that can serve as the basis of a corruption prosecution.

    The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan concluded, in light of the Supreme Court’s narrower definition, that the jury instructions given by the judge in Mr. Silver’s trial were erroneous and that a properly instructed jury might not have convicted him.

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • cer July 13, 2017 at 10:29 am

      I’m shocked that a corrupt Democrat in NY gets off. 😉

      Conservative first, Republican second!

      • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 11:06 am

        SCOTUS has pretty much made corruption not a crime. Current laws are too vague apparently across the board. States can make laws that list 80 billion explicit acts but if the politician commits #80 billion-plus-one it won’t be covered by the corruption statute.

        • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 11:11 am

          No. It is a crime. The problem was the instructions to the jurors were under the older standard. The Feds can retry Silver with the new standard and chances are the bastard will be found guilty again. Silver devised a scheme to ripoff the government and profit off 9/11 victims. He is scum and can totally be re convicted of this crime again when the Feds retry him.

          Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

          • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 11:35 am

            They seem be throwing out a ton of secondary stuff that made the convictions easier to do. I mean is the count containing the recommendation letter for an unpaid internship going to result in a conviction absent the other stuff? I think the new indictment will be scaled back to fewer counts; otherwise there will be several (if not all) where he won’t be found guilty. I’d be surprised if he ever saw a jail cell even though he belongs there…

  • cer July 13, 2017 at 10:28 am

    This is positive progress imho…. it appears that at the very least some of the Cruz language has been excepted in the new version of the GOP Senate health bill.


    Conservative first, Republican second!

    • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 10:30 am

      The bill was fine without it, and if this kills the bill, I’m going to be pissed, but it is good policy. If taxpayers believe people with pre-existing conditions should be covered, which they do, let taxpayers pay for it. Don’t hide the costs in the market with increased premiums for everybody.

      Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

      • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 11:15 am

        No! The Cruz Amendment is Obamacare repeal. Without it it the bill is just Obamacare Lite. Cruz Amendment allows people to buy plans that don’t conform to the Obamacare mandates. Combined with the HSA expansion in the Senate bill it could be the bases to create a conservative market based system of paying for healthcare.

        Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

        • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 11:33 am

          The original bill without it greatly deregulated the actuarial value regulations and the essential health benefits regulations, allowing people to buy cheaper plans right for them. It also expanded HSAs, repealed Obamacare’s taxes, repealed the crushing employer mandate and the unconstitutional individual mandate, a lot of good things. But the most important thing was what it did to Medicaid, which, if left unchecked, will grow more and more bloated every year and blow a hole in Federal and state budgets (and in some states like New York, local too!) All for a “health insurance” program that doesn’t even work according to all the studies we have on it so far (Google Oregon Medicaid). Medicaid reform would be the first real entitlement reform ever and it would be the greatest policy achievement the GOP has ever had, it would save Americans trillions of dollars by cutting a program that doesn’t even work. And Only 7% of people even buy health insurance on the individual market, so changes to that are much less important than the other good things the bill does. So Cruz can make his proposal all he wants, but if he kills Medicaid reform by making perfect the enemy of good just to try and reduce prices a little bit for some of the SEVEN percent of people who buy health insurance on the individual market, he’s dead to me.

          Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

        • edtorres04 July 13, 2017 at 11:46 am

          Izengabe, aren’t you dissapointed that this bill keeps the Obamacare taxes?

          • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 11:55 am

            Never too thrilled about higher taxes but the so called millionaire tax might need to stay in there. Politically its a hard vote to cut subsides for some middle class folks and then give cuts to the wealthy. I hate to sound like Bernie Sanders but we have an absolute crazy quilt system right now. Some one said “Paris is worth a Mass” and perhaps repealing Obamacare is worth leaving in the 3.5% millionaire tax.

            • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 11:58 am

              Paris vaut bien une messe thanks for bringing back high school French.

            • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 12:22 pm

              It’s not a millionaire tax since it starts on incomes of $250,000. Its more a hundred thousandaire tax.

              Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

              • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 12:41 pm

                Well anyone with income of $250k and above is highly likely to have assets above $1 million and thus actually be a millionaire. Anyone making that much money should be at least considered extremely affluent in every single part of the country anyway.

                R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                • TexasR July 13, 2017 at 12:47 pm

                  Tell that to people in the Bay Area who need to make at least that much to afford what in most places is a middle class house!

                  Whatever we're talking about, it's all Frank Meyer's fault
                  Be careful what you wish for

                  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 12:49 pm

                    And living in the bay area is a luxury. Nobody is a slave forced to live in the bay area. It’s expensive because people find value in it

                    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 12:57 pm

                      The Bay Area is certainly much more expensive than the rest of the country, but it’s hardly as if there absolutely no affordable middle-class places in the Bay Area. There just aren’t any affordable middle-class places where all of your neighbors will be white (and thus “woke” and hip and into artisanal sandwiches).

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

                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 12:57 pm

                      Salaries are more in places like NYC and SF because the cost of living is so high. But an NYC public school principal with 2 kids earning $100,000 a year married to a mid level ad executive earning $175,000 is not a millionaire. In fact after half their salary is taken by taxes they probably have a very hard time affording a 1,200 sq foot 2 bedroom apartment.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 1:00 pm

                      Exactly, it’s the equivalent of saying tell that to people living on Manhattan struggling to pay the mortgage a 20th floor condo at 432 Park Avenue. Oh the humanity!


                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 1:33 pm

                      @rdw72777 nobody living off of $250K a year can afford to live in 432 Park where 2 bedroom apartments rent for over $26,000 a month. The point was $250k a year is not a millionaire. This just proves that.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 1:02 pm


                      If they DEMAND on living in hip Manhattan or Brooklyn neighborhoods. That being said, the “hip” urban lifestyle was never meant for families or salaried individuals. It was meant for “creative” and “sensitive” people living on Daddy’s money. Lena Dunham types.

                      For other people, they could probably get a two bedroom in Astoria or that part of Staten Island next to the ferry for under $2k a month. Which is patently affordable for two married teachers.

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

                    • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 1:12 pm


                      “…affordable for 2 salaried teachers who understand budgeting and who didn’t borrow the full cost to get their teaching degrees at Sarah Lawrence.”

                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 1:19 pm

                      @VASTBLIGHTKINGCONSPIRACY Yes you can find a 1,000 sq ft sh*thole 2 bedroom 1 bath walk up in Astoria for over $2,000 a month. My point is I wouldnt call a family of 4 living in it “millionaires”.

                      As for Cities not being meant for families I say that is complete BS. Cities are amazing places for children to grow up and raise a family. Our problem is that government policies make living in cities unaffordable for most middle income to lower upper income people. As a result American cities are rife with income disparity becoming places for the very poor and uber rich.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • w920us July 13, 2017 at 1:47 pm

                      Haha. “Woke” – Liberal elite’s way of sounding enlightened and not racist.

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

                    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 2:04 pm

                      In Old English wōc was the present participle of “awake” so maybe they’re just correcting a millennium worth of poor diction. 🙂

                      Dem NC-11

                  • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 1:16 pm

                    People who live in some of the most valuable real estate on earth in one of the wealthiest and most productive areas of America shouldn’t be the benchmark for middle class. They’re by definition outliers and some of the wealthiest people on the planet. They’re also making more than the majority of their neighbors. There isn’t a metro area in the US where you need 250k to cover basic necessities or afford a normal middle class life.

                    R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                    • TexasR July 13, 2017 at 1:18 pm

                      Conversely, $250,000 shouldn’t be the benchmark for what is considered “wealthy.” Regardless, none of the above explains why it is desirable to tax those same people for having saved enough money to pay for their kids’ college and their retirements without relying on loans or Social Security. That’s basically government punishment for fiscal responsibility!

                      Whatever we're talking about, it's all Frank Meyer's fault
                      Be careful what you wish for

                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 1:27 pm

                      @TEXASR exactly! This idea that working families making $250,000 are somehow millionaires driving Lamborghini and flying to their summer homes in private planes is insane. In most urban areas a family earning this income would be considered upper middle class and that’s who this is a tax on.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • OGGoldy July 13, 2017 at 1:43 pm


                      I live in a pretty affluent suburb of an affluent Metropolitan area with a large enough house with just me and my significant other. I definitely consider her and I upper middle class (I am a design engineer with an MS, while she is an A/V venue manager and music producer) and we make significantly less than 250k between us. I don’t see any real world outside of the most affluent neighborhoods in the world where 250k per year would be anywhere in the middle class at all. And even being able to live in one of those neighborhoods at all makes someone upper class at minimum.

                    • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 1:53 pm

                      I’m not saying it’s desirable to tax anybody, but Republicans should be cognizant that trying to spin a tax cut for people who are in the top 5% of household income as a tax cut for the middle class is insane. It’s going to be extremely tough to sell cutting those taxes to pay for Medicaid cuts.

                      R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 2:04 pm

                      The reality is there are not enough genuine millionaires to raise enough money to pay for programs by raising taxes solely on them. So the taxes hikes are always geared to hit the upper middle income folks who live in high cost of living/high income places because they are more of them and they are the folks that will be hit by the hikes.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • AD123 July 13, 2017 at 2:01 pm

                      Making money doesn’t make you (upper) middle class, having money does. They’re correlated but not exactly so, especially when you consider the vast amount of wealth tied up in home ownership, where age is as determinative as income is. And the vast amount of debt tied up in student loans, which is again closely tied with age.

                    • krazen1211 July 13, 2017 at 10:23 pm

                      The 250k+ crowd is a solidly Dem voting constituency now. The 250k+ crowd in cherry picked high cost of living metros is a massively Dem voting constituency. Obviously they have chosen to get taxed.

                      Mitch McConnell seems to have actively yielded on both of the main tax cuts for the ‘rich’ in the latest BCRA draft, which is mildly surprising. It’s nowhere in the same ballpark as Steve Bannon’s full blown populism, but I guess even the Congressional GOP is slowly being dragged away from deranged economic policy.

                      There are some polls I will look for that show that all the new voters that joined the GOP in 2016 believe that the Democratic party is the party of the rich. So maybe they get that burden now.

                    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 10:35 pm

                      The partisan affiliation of economic actors is irrelevant in supply-side theory. So, are you saying that supply-side economics is BS?

                      Dem NC-11

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 10:36 pm


                      A largely Democratic-constituency yes, but they still form a disproportionate amount of the GOP donor and political class. Hell, while we’re on the topic of mocking non-meritocratic admissions in education, Bruce Rauner spent insane amounts of money in sketchy “donations” in order to get his children into various prestigious schools. Even more money than he donated to Planned Parenthood!

                      The views, attitudes, and interests of people like Bruce Rauner still have much more influence in the GOP than any of our party’s actual voters, even as diminished as Rauner-types were by 2016.

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

                • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 12:52 pm

                  Generally true, though I do know some people who make well above that and honestly probably still have a negative networth. Oh the beauty of student loans.

                  That being said, IIRC, the 1% mark is somewhere around a household income of $330k, so it’s pretty obvious why these policies are a non-starter. And I don’t even know if most people who make over $330k support cutting taxes on the top tax bracket.

                  There is though a rather bemusing tendency for rich “socially liberal, but fiscally conservative” Americans to claim that they’re actually middle-class because they face some financial pressure after they pay for their elite private prepatory academies (40k+ a year) and the mortgage for their $3 million McMansion. Aka the majority of anti-Trump Republicans I’ve met in my life.

                  Coincidentally, I’m pretty sure almost any hypothethical child is better off having their parents just put that $$$ in a private trust fund instead of sending them to private prep academy. The American upper-class has this really cargo cult approach to education.

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

            • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 1:12 pm

              That would have been French King Henry IV, who was a Protestant Nobleman who converted to the Catholic religion to become king, and said Paris is worth a Mass. We shall never know what his opinion would be about the Obamacare taxes!

              • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 1:14 pm

                Paris is well worth a mass…there’s obviously historical disagreement about whether he said any of this but disagreement gets even more minute because some think he said it somewhat gleefully using “bien” (meaning “well”) and others do not.

                • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 1:39 pm

                  250K IMO is a totally arbitrary number. Clearly many people are worth multiple millions and earn less then 250K per year. Likewise some earn 250K and might have any money saved or in the bank. Locally here some one their million dollar home foreclosed on and he was a Surgeon and not just your run of the mill surgeon but was specialized. One can make some bad spending decisions, get a couple of divorces and make poor investment choices then that 500K yearly salary does not go very far.

                  The political reality is that we need 50 votes if and keeping this tax gets us 5 o 6 more votes we need to do it.

                  • Left Coast Libertarian July 13, 2017 at 5:31 pm

                    I looked it up and the typical person who isn’t in the top 1% but is in the top 10% saves about 12% of gross income. So a person making $300,000 a year would save $36,000. Someone could invest that wisely but let’s assume they put it under the mattress. Someone would have to make $300,000 a year for 28 years to be a millionaire. If my income suddenly jumps to $300,000 next year I won’t be a millionaire.

                    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 5:51 pm

                      If some idiot who obviously didn’t get their $300,000 a year job based on merit is putting their savings under the mattress then they deserve to take 28 years to become a millionaire, assuming they manage to keep their job that long. Someone who is getting the average rate of return on that investment would have $1 million after 12 years and $6 million after 28 years.

                      Dem NC-11

                    • Left Coast Libertarian July 13, 2017 at 7:00 pm

                      That’s true, but then again I know people who had all those average gains completely wiped out in 2001 and 2009. But even 12 years is a long time since the person is taxed the millionaire’s taxed for 11 of them when he’s not a millionaire.

                      I’d also like to point out that income isn’t always linear. Sure, if you start working for a company at 22 and work your way up the ladder at that company for 40+ years your income might be. If you’re in a business where your income fluctuates, maybe it’s your own business, then it doesn’t. The left presents the top 1%, 5%, or 10% as a monolithic group but come people are in the top 5% one year and the top 30% the next.

                    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 9:22 pm

                      But here’s the rub. Someone earning $300K could be paying $130k a year in federal and state taxes. So that $300k gross pay is only $170k net. Saving $36K would be about 20% of his net pay.

                      Also someone saving $3,000 a month at a 6% rate of return in the 35% tax bracket would need about 19 years to save $1 million.

                      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 9:46 pm


                      On the other hand, in order to save $36k a year, this hypothetical individual would have to spend $144k a year. $12k a month. That sounds rather uh, difficult, without going into conspicuous consumption or philanthropy. Even if you eat out at fancy restaurants for every single meal, vacation abroad every year, and buy tons of high fashion brands (I in fact know someone who does all of those and does not spend that much).

                      Also statistically, I’m pretty sure the typical person who makes $300k a year has significant inheritable family wealth. Because social mobility in the United States is so low (one of the lowest among developed nations!).

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

                    • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 9:51 pm

                      That again depends on location. If you live in Manhattan and have two school-age children you can very easily spend 12K per month on housing, food, and private school tuition alone. Which, of course, goes back to the earlier point that no one is compelled to live in NYC or SF–people who want to live there badly enough that they are willing to pay the much higher cost of living choose to do so.

                    • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 9:55 pm

                      Personally I would say paying for private school is insane especially if you have an expensive house where you theoretically should have good schools. And if you have an expensive house without good schools you’re an idiot

                      Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 9:58 pm


                      Yeah, I just filed those under conspicuous consumption.

                      Anyways, it seems a political non-starter for Republicans to campaign on denying working-class people popular government benefits so that rich people (mostly Democrats) can more easily afford to send their kids to ultra-exclusive private schools.

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

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 10:04 pm


                      True. But most of America’s economic elite is in fact insane! Take San Francisco: the most expensive city in the country. Also where the public schools are generally good, especially because some degree of school choice exists within the public school system!

                      Despite that, only about 30% of white students in San Francisco are enrolled in public schools! And they tend to be disproportionately of immigrant origin (Eastern European or Middle Eastern).

                      Similarly, in the very expensive cities in the South Bay (such as the Palo Alto area) where all of the public schools are highly ranked, a massive proportion (if not the outright majority) of non-immigrant kids go to private school as well.

                      The people in American society most likely to wax and wane about the beauty of diversity and unlimited mass immigration are also willing to spend hundreds of thousands of $$$ to avoid experiencing it in any way.

                      I sometimes suspect that if we lived in a country with 90% top tax rates, a lot of elite cultural liberalism (and the overall culture wars) would more or less dissipate away.

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

                    • jncca July 14, 2017 at 12:22 am

                      VLKC once again your statistics are complete BS.

                      I come from the Palo Alto area. Very few people send their kids to private school. Many of the ones who do so are South Asian immigrants, perhaps an overall majority. But overall it’s a very small percentage regardless, and an even smaller percentage among Whites.

                      Now if you were talking about a place like Berkeley, yes, a huge number of Whites send their kids to private schools. But not in Santa Clara County.

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

                    • Greyhound July 14, 2017 at 1:23 am


                      Actually, I’ve heard people joke that everyone in places like Palo Alto send their kinds to Private schools, its just that the tuition is included in your property taxes!

                      R, 26, CA-18. Anti-Anti-Trump

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 14, 2017 at 1:41 am


                      If you’re from the Palo Alto area, you should know exactly what I’m talking about (since Palo Alto proper isn’t anywhere close to the most patrician place in the Palo Alto area). Look at the demographic cleave between Menlo-Atherton HS (a pretty good high school that takes most of the kids from East Palo Alto and is thus roughly half-Hispanic or black) and the Menlo School (which is very very white).

                      Those aren’t “BS” statistics, even if they don’t make your old neighbors look as virtuous as they like to preen themselves.

                      Coincidentally, the Palo Alto proper high schools are both 85% White/Asian (and the upper-class immigrants working in high-tech) and are in a different county, so the kids from EPA wouldn’t get sent over there, and thus you don’t see white flight to private schools there.

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

          • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 12:27 pm

            @EDTORRES04 Am I dissapointed that this bill keeps the Obamacare taxes? Yes and no. If keeping the taxes in place is the price conservatives have to pay to repeal Obamacare and replace it with HSAs and low cost high deductible catastrophic healthcare plans than it is probably a price well worth paying. Besides the GOP can always circle back to these taxes later when we do a comprehensive tax reform later. If leaving in the taxes for now gets this done I say do it!

            Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

            • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 6:27 pm

              Interestingly, the NY tax cut that starts next year is called middle class by Gov Cuomo and it will impact income from $40,000 to $300,000 a year. So according to the Gov then, if you make $250,000 a year you are entitled to his “middle class tax cut”. Of course this is NY where incomes are not typical compared to most states, but if the “great Gov” calls it middle class, who am I, a mere mortal, to argue with him?

    • cer July 13, 2017 at 10:33 am

      Senator Lee is saying not so fast…. https://twitter.com/SenMikeLee/status/885497202659012608

      Conservative first, Republican second!

  • Art Boreman July 13, 2017 at 11:06 am

    WV-Sen & WV-2

    Don Blankenship doing tire kicking & media on potential Senate run.

    Hillary aide signs up to lose general to Mooney by 30.

    M, R, WV-1

    • shamlet July 13, 2017 at 11:40 am

      I’ve been meaning to ask you, what are your thoughts on Ojeda’s chances? I think they’re tiny, but not zero. Also, what’s taking Lucas so long to declare?

      R, MD-7. Put not your trust in princes. Process is more important than outcome.

    • LVGOP July 13, 2017 at 10:11 pm

      Mooney only won by 16 last time against an underfunded Democrat when Trump was running away with that district. Mooney should win, but only by geography and luck. He has never struck me as a strong campaigner and nearly blew this seat in 2014, when he should have won in a romp. The residual of being a carpetbagger may cost him the seat in 2020.


  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 12:04 pm


    New healthcare bill draft released

    $70 billion to states to help cover out of pocket costs. This is a good revision. Avik Roy suggested they do something like this, and I trust him. Less deductibles for poor people is a good thing

    Expanded HSAs to pay for premiums. Excellent. HSAs are awesome and I’ll take any expansion I can get.

    Cruz amendment. Good. Like I said, I like it.

    Enhanced Focus On Higher Risk Individuals. A fund to help pay for pre-existing conditions because of the Cruz amendment. Definitely necessary.

    Repealed Surtax: Dislike, but maybe politically necessary

    Additional resources to combat the Opioid Epidemic: Seems like vote buying to me and I’m not sure how much this money will actually help fight the opioid epidemic, but if it’s necessary to get the bill passed, it’s fine by me

    Overall, very good. This bill keeps getting better and better.

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • dforston July 13, 2017 at 12:09 pm

      If moderates are still hesitant to support the Cruz amendment, maybe they could allow it to be rolled out slowly rather than all at once. Maybe start with a pilot in one or two states or have a cap on the total number of consumers to see who signs up.

  • OGGoldy July 13, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Looks like with the override budget in Illinois, the state appears to have avoided junk bond status. Curious how this plays out next fall. I can’t imagine anyone was rooting for Illinois being downgraded in such a manner, so this is welcomed news for the state.

  • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Thursday Tidbits – NY

    Acting Southern District US Atty Joon Kim announced he will retry former Dem Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on corruption charges after his conviction was overturned on appeal because of improper jury instructions.

    NYC Mayor deB has infuriated homeless activists because he says some NYC street panhandlers are doing it just for fun.

    Emily Martz, an Saranac Lake activist with the business group Adirondack North Country Association, has become the 4th person to announce she will seek the Dem nomination to oppose North Country GOP Congresswoman Elise Stefanik.

    There is a new Q poll out (July 5-10 1137rv) that shows Cuomo’s fav/unfav at 46-38, which although positive, is the lowest since Sept. 2015. He does particularly poorly in upstate NY, where 37% give him a favorable, but 48% an unfavorable rating (not surprising since he lost upstate NY to GOP nominee Astorino in 2014). In terms of running for Pres, 55% of respondents say Cuomo should not and 56% say they do not think he would make a good Pres. Trump has a 63% negative approval rating, although that is down from 67% in the March poll.

    all at:


  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 12:57 pm

    Didn’t somebody try to tell me Rand Paul was just grandstanding and he’d end up voting for the final bill?

    That clown is out there campaigning against the new bill even WITH this new amendment that’s good enough for the likes of Ted Cruz and Mike Lee. I’m telling you, there’s grandstanders like Cruz, and then there’s guys like Paul who actually believe their own act. This man will not vote for any bill unless it destroys the federal Government, I think. It’s ridiculous.

    So I guess we’re letting Collins and Paul vote no and then getting everyone else. So stupid that we have a Senator from freaking Kentucky who just got re-elected voting no, but whatever.

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 1:03 pm

      Paul said this on FOX and Friends before the new bill was released. If McConnell needs him I think Paul will vote for it.

      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

      • krazen1211 July 13, 2017 at 4:32 pm

        These types of things do not lose by 1 vote. No R except maybe the old Cruz is going to leave the entire House R caucus in the ditch. And the newer, nicer Cruz is onboard.

        We still have to figure out how much money there is to Cornhusker kickback this thing through the goalposts.

      • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 6:31 pm

        I think Paul is hopeless in terms of getting his vote for the new bill. McConnell will just have to write him off as one of the 2 Senators he can afford to lose.

  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 1:54 pm


    Cruz supports bill. Portman still undecided.

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 4:30 pm

      Portman can shove it. he just won re-election.

      • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 4:35 pm

        So did Paul… in Kentucky. And Capito is up in 2020 in West Virginia, where Trump will probably break 70%, she’s not remotely in danger, and Murkowski, Hoeven and Moran just won too, Hoeven with 78! and Moran with 62%, and Murkowski’s biggest challenger was Joe Miller, she would do well to be MORE conservative, not less. All of these people look like self-serving jerks by opposing this to me, except for Heller, who, unfortunately, is likely going to have to take a tough vote because of jerks like Rand Paul

        Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

        • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 7:30 pm

          Or, you know, maybe these legislators simply view this as bad policy?


          • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 7:39 pm

            Literally every single one of these Senators except for Collins voted for a Reconciliation bill in 2015 that full repealed Obamacare when nobody cared because Obama was obviously going to get it. Rand Paul probably does think that this is bad policy because he is crazy, but everyone else who is even considering voting against this bill who voted against that one is totally dishonest. This bill is to the left of that one, so anyone voting against this one from the left that voted for that one is a dishonest, self-serving jerk who crumbles under pressure

            Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

  • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    “Only a real Indian can defeat a fake Indian”. Or so says businessman Shiva Ayyadurai, a candidate for the GOP nomination to oppose Mass Dem Senator Elizabeth Warren, who is of Asian Indian descent. His reference is to Warren’s dubious claim to have American Indian ancestry. He says he sent her a DNA kit so she could prove she has significant American Indian ancestry but she returned it. His chances aren’t that great, but I think he already has one of the best lines of the midterm election campaign.


    • TheWizardOf144 July 13, 2017 at 2:15 pm

      That’s awesome…

    • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 2:18 pm

      Scott Brown’s Pocahontas schtick did him zero favors in 2012.


      • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 2:29 pm

        No one is going to beat Warrren in MA in 2018 but keeping the Fake Indian schtick in the news might be somewhat helpful to driving up her negatives for 2020. The schtick might play better with Obama-Trump voters in the Rust Belt than it did with MA voters.

      • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 2:36 pm

        He did a lot better than say, Mark Kirk.

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

    • SlippingJimmy July 14, 2017 at 1:38 am

      Manchin is bearable enough that I’d trade any chance we have of beating him for this dude to send Walking Eagle (too full of s**t to fly) back to the lecture circuit.

      Republican, TX-22.

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    National Review: The only public policy that really unites Americans right-of-center is hatred of the mass media and the higher education industry. Since Trump rallied the GOP on the former, whoever wants to be the next successful Republican breakout ought to focus on the latter.


    Free community college and trade schools are probably going to find their way into the GOP platform really really fast.

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

    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 3:06 pm

      Free community college is already in the Democratic platform so it’ll be nice to see the GOP adopting more good ideas from the Democrats.

      Dem NC-11

      • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 3:10 pm

        To my knowledge it has only been enacted in one, extremely Republican state-TN.

        R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

        • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 3:15 pm

          That’s correct – and good for Tennessee – but it was only just added to the national Democratic platform in 2016. By contrast, the 2016 Republican national platform added a call to end federal student loan financing along with a call to expand for-profit private sector alternatives to traditional four year colleges.

          Dem NC-11

          • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 3:36 pm

            As we both know, party platforms are written by party activists with occasional input from lobbyists who for some reason are paid by clients to influence meaningless documents. They bear little to no relation to how either party governs.

            R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

            • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 3:47 pm

              I’m not disputing that but VBKC was the one who framed this in terms of party platforms. I simply responded to that. In any case, I don’t disagree with Elliot Kaufman’s statement that a populist going after universities could “unite the best, the worst, and all the other elements of the Right” which is evidenced by how it draws together you and VBKC. As Kaufman put it, “everyone will hear what he or she needs to, and respond accordingly.” The better question though is whether it would shift any votes from D to R and even Kaufman doesn’t claim that would be the case. He simply claims that a GOP without any other unifying rally cry could unite with regard to that one. I don’t doubt it.

              Dem NC-11

              • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 4:14 pm

                True.I was just pointing out that it isn’t really a Democratic idea.

                FWIW, Freddie deBoer had an interesting piece on how academia is both making itself a target for the populist right and is ill-prepared to handle that onslaught. it’s from his typical contrarian leftist perspective. https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/07/11/the-mass-defunding-of-higher-education-thats-yet-to-come/

                R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                • GOPTarHeel July 13, 2017 at 4:21 pm

                  (And I don’t really endorse “going after universities” per se. Where there are legitimate issues to go after, I have no problem with that.)

                  R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 6:04 pm

                  Center-left economics and right-wing populism against colleges aren’t necessarily diametrically opposed. Left-wingers are presumably worried about right-wingers defunding public education. And certainly some Republicans would want to. But I suspect the real conservative prize is more political CONTROL over universities. Such as state legislatures shutting down gender/ethnic studies departments, passing procedural protections for fraternities/sororities, and mandating more vocational education.

                  We’ve actually seen conservative governments do this. The right-wing Abe administration in Japan has been pressuring regional schools (which fulfill a similar social role as most American state schools) to slash their humanities departments with some degree of success.

                  Of course, free college is also the ultimate pay-off to the rich because the people who go to college are so much richer than the people who don’t. Probably a bigger giveaway to the rich than TARP.

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

                  • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 6:08 pm

                    I can just about guarantee you that shutting down gender/ethnic studies departments would backfire on conservatives. Those departments currently serve as a sort of academic ghetto that effectively walls off most race and gender theory from the traditional humanities and social sciences. The people wouldn’t vanish if the departments are shut down. They would be integrated into the traditional humanities and social sciences. Most students who major in those fields are students who just want the piece of paper anyhow, so it would probably result in a degree of dumbing down in the other departments as well. Actually, I’m 99% sure that the gender/ethnic studies would simply be recreated as disciplines within the traditional humanities and social sciences.

                    Dem NC-11

                    • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 6:17 pm

                      I think that prediction is largely correct. Which could then lead to the traditional humanities/social sciences also getting shuttered or heavily reduced. Thus the comparison to Japan, where over 1/3rd of their state universities are flat out shuttering their humanities departments.

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

                    • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 6:32 pm

                      It would create major headaches for the STEM departments that would then be dealing with a lot of the aforesaid students that just want the piece of paper, who are now disproportionately in the liberal arts. The real problem in US higher education is runaway credential inflation in the US job market and these moves won’t solve that (to be sure I’m not suggesting that you’re motivated by a desire to solve real problems).

                      Dem NC-11

        • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 6:41 pm

          I think Dem Oregon is also about to start a free community college program, but I don’t know the details. NY now has “free” community and four year state college for students with family income under $125,000 (currently $100,000), but in reality first you have to apply and get all the free financial assistance from federal and state programs available and only then can you ask for the balance of your tuition from the state “Excelsior” program. Also in NY you have to be a full time student, which probably knocks out many community college students who are prone to be part time. Finally unlike in Tenn, if you take the Excelsior grant you must stay in NY for the time period of the grant after you graduate, otherwise the grant becomes a loan.

    • Greyhound July 13, 2017 at 5:01 pm

      Honestly, abolishing Legacy admissions is probably the better winning issue. Not only is it massively popular, its also a perfect anti-elite framing device and astoundingly good policy.

      R, 26, CA-18. Anti-Anti-Trump

      • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 5:58 pm

        I don’t think it’s really possible to abolish legacy admissions. As in I don’t think private universities would ever meaningfully comply. They’d all just pretend they’re not using legacy admissions and do it anyways.

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

        • Ryan_in_SEPA July 13, 2017 at 7:08 pm

          You can ensure 100% compliance if universities lost federal funding through student financial aid if they failed to comply. Not everyone can go Hillsdale College.

          31, PA-6, fiscally conservative communitarian, Giant Meteor 2020 - Just End It Already!

        • Greyhound July 13, 2017 at 7:19 pm

          Even so, this a fight the GOP should want to have. I can’t think of a better way for the GOP to endear itself to America’s youth than to go after a system that is pretty much exclusively designed to keep them from rising in socioeconomic status. Just call it Affirmative action for Rich kids.

          R, 26, CA-18. Anti-Anti-Trump

          • jncca July 13, 2017 at 9:14 pm

            You’re ignoring how much your party’s economic policy is still dominated by elites, even in the Trump era.

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

            • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 9:25 pm

              Yes, Scarsdale Republicans rely on legacy admissions in order to get their liberal children into college. And for self-serving reasons, this is the political demographic that the GOP political class in DC wishes to prioritize over all others.

              That being said, there’s been so much political churn among this demographic, the last remnants might truly be gone after another 4-8 years.

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

            • Greyhound July 13, 2017 at 10:09 pm

              Oh I know–I have no illusions about whether or not the current Republican Congressional Caucus would even entertain such ideas. Thing is Trump is the first President since probably Andrew Jackson that would actually support something so explicitly designed to piss off America’s “Meritocracy”, so this is probably the only shot the US is ever going to get to actually do it. Trump is exactly the sort of guy who could use the bully pulpit to drive broad support for it, and I’d love to see the Progressives stuck between admitting Trump has a good idea and defending a foundational pillar of the American Aristocracy.

              R, 26, CA-18. Anti-Anti-Trump

              • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 10:26 pm

                Admittedly, I’ve actually become skeptical whether it’s actually worth it to go to any of these colleges. I mean yeah, your average Princeton or Harvard or Stanford grad makes more than your average UMich, UVA, UNC, or UCLA grad. But not incomparably more. The same logic applies to private schools vs. public schools. I suspect almost every rich kid would be better off their parents took all the money they WOULD have spent on private school and college, put it in a nice trust fund with a reasonable rate of return, and then shipped them off to public school/college.

                Rich Americans are spending incredible amounts of money in tuition and donations in order to get their kids into elite schools, but I’m starting to think this is just stupidity on their part. I know there are a few industries that care about undergraduate prestige (such as investment banking), but I can’t think of any other. I’m not sure if it’s really “harming” America (well, besides the useless expenditure of $$$ that could be used for more productive purposes).

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

  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 2:54 pm


    Morning Consult/Politico has Healthcare at 40/47. Not bad at all. Trump at 46/50

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 4:30 pm

      That’s a pretty good place to be, also for Trump …

  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    I’ve seen left wing hacks like Paul Krugman and others claiming that this new HSA provision is a “giveaway” to the rich as the “rich” are the only ones who use HSAs. This is a flagrant lie, and the Party needs to get out in front of this with simple facts: the income of HSA users is almost exactly the same as the income distribution of the population. The left really does love to lie so much and twist things that will help every day Americans get cheaper health insurance into class warfare simply to preserve bigger government. The left doesn’t want you to buy your own health insurance with an HSA, they want you to have the government buy it for you with garbage like Medicaid. Total BS. But unfortunately our party doesn’t know how to market anything so this lie may go unchallenged


    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • TennesseeMike July 13, 2017 at 4:18 pm

      I prepare tax returns during the tax season and I can tell you for a fact more employers are shifting to HSA accounts. 10 years ago I don’t know if I ever prepared a return with a HSA. Now I have done dozens. The popularity is greatly increasing. And this in an area having lower income levels.

      TN-2 District. A Social and Fiscal Conservative Republican

      • Ryan_in_SEPA July 13, 2017 at 4:25 pm

        I went to a HSA four years ago and love it, but the bulk of the people I see who like them are college educated professionals. I get a nice contribution from my employer and I fund the rest up to the max. It is a nice income and FICA tax free vehicle. I just cannot imagine my parents let alone my grandparents liking such an arrangement. That does not mean I don’t support everyone going to that model.

        31, PA-6, fiscally conservative communitarian, Giant Meteor 2020 - Just End It Already!

        • Jon July 13, 2017 at 7:15 pm

          I wish the $300 my employer gives annually to FSA would switch to HSA; I’ve had HSA before and it’s much more convenient in addition to not having it forfeit.
          That’s not something I ever maxed out though; when I had an HSA I estimated the annual covered expenses with it on the high side. It was 401K I’d come close to max out the percentage allowed. For the FSA with annual forfeiture rules I’m not positive I’d even spend $300 and so I don’t contribute and only accept my employers contribution.

          45, M, MO-02

        • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 9:30 pm

          HSA are not meant for your grandparents. They are meant for young healthy people to save money in conjunction with catastrophic healthcare plans incase of illness, medical need or loss of job to pay for health insurance later. Ideally the system would allow parents to set up HSA account for their children and make tax free contributions on their behalf to those accounts. So theoretically a healthy child could turn 18 and be presented with an account with enough money in it to cover their out of pocket healthcare needs and insurance until they are fully employed.

          Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

          • Jon July 14, 2017 at 11:09 pm

            The HSA itself would be fine for any situation; it’s in fact somewhat better than FSA because money not spent in a given calendar year doesn’t get forfeited. It’s the high deductible health plan that you’re required to have in order to contribute to an HSA that’s not suitable in all situations.

            The best thing would be for a merger of FSA and HSA that would allow anybody to contribute to an account regardless of what the base insurance is (like an FSA) but with the HSA rules allowing unspent money to be saved for later and also not having to submit the superfluous paperwork to FSA after reimbursement that’s nothing more than downloading the approved amount from one page on their website and uploading it onto another under a different department of the same company.

            45, M, MO-02

            • Mike1965 July 14, 2017 at 11:33 pm

              HSA’s are a mainly a way for upper middle class people to shelter money from taxes after they have maxed out their 401K/IRA. Very little real world help to those who need help with health insurance the most.

              FWIW I have a HSA/high deductible insurance plan at work. The only money that goes to my HSA is the $500 a year my employer contributes. Any money I can afford to set aside goes to my 401K instead. If you are making under 50K a year it is tough to fully fund both.


        • Mike1965 July 14, 2017 at 11:40 pm

          The FICA free part can be a double edged sword especially for those with lower incomes. While it is great to lower your taxes immediately it also lowers the income base used to calculate Social Security. Still a net plus for most people but a hidden cost most people do not think about.


          • Izengabe July 15, 2017 at 10:00 pm

            There are lots of creative ways to address these issues. Perhaps allowing low income earners to pay their Medicare taxes directly into their HSA accounts.

            Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 3:28 pm


    Heller, Portman, Capito undecided. Johnson a yes. Cornyn increasingly optimistic the bill will pass.

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • GerGOP July 13, 2017 at 4:31 pm

      Buy off Capito and Portman with a couple of billions and be done with it.
      Paul might vote for it in the end.

      • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 7:31 pm

        Why is the right encouraging the GOP to be as shady as the Democrats during the Obamacare debate?


        • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 7:44 pm

          Because “moderate” Senators were dishonest about their campaign promises and former votes to repeal Obamacare and they cave under the first sign of pressure once some deranged liberal idiots start showing up at their Town Halls. So they require buyoffs. Believe me, I’d rather have the tax cuts, but this bill needs to get passed

          Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

        • Izengabe July 13, 2017 at 9:33 pm

          Because US Senator like Lisa Murkowski would feel right at home in the Prize Patrol. Shake downs for more government money is the oldest game in politics.

          Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

  • prsteve11 July 13, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Judicial nominees John Bush (6th Circuit) and Kevin Newsom (11th Circuit) both cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee, by 11-9 and 18-2 votes, respectively. The Trump effect on the judiciary continues to heat up …


    SC-03, Conservative Republican

    • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 3:48 pm

      Why did Newsom get so many Democrat votes? Normally I’d be pleasantly surprised with bipartisanship, but in this political environment, that gets me worried he’ll be a Souter

      Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

      • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 4:16 pm

        I think the Democrats are picking their battles. Even in this day and age, not every judicial appointee is going to be seriously contested–the GOP let many of Obama’s nominees slide through prior to 2014.

        Newsom is broadly recognized as one of the best lawyers in Alabama, has nothing inflammatory on his resume, comes from a state with 2 R Senators and isn’t going to change the complexion of the 11th that much.

        Bush, on the other hand, called abortion and slavery the two greatest travesties of the court system so he’s attracted much more opposition. Stras, Larsen, and Eid were all on the SCOTUS list, so I imagine Dems will line up against them too.

        • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 4:24 pm

          Yup Ds IMO try hard to win these judicial battles. McConnell/Grassley literally just has to wait them .

          speaking of nominations–Here is Trump’s 3rd monthly installment


          • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 4:26 pm

            The only person of note on these district court nominations was Mark Norris–who gets a well deserved spot on Western TN district

          • Son_of_the_South July 13, 2017 at 4:35 pm

            The article notes that Trump is now moving more quickly with judicial nominations than Obama and Bush The Younger. Wouldn’t it be fitting if the largest effect of Trump’s presidency is the remaking of the judiciary? That would be a real case of voters actually getting something permanent and lasting that many of them were actually voting for.

            24, R, TN-09
            Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

          • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 5:34 pm

            All from red states with two Republican Senators. The nominations have followed a pattern so far: safe picks from states where the Senators aren’t going to be a problem, and people on the SCOTUS list. Bibas in Pennsylvania is the only one who doesn’t fit either category.

            • Son_of_the_South July 13, 2017 at 6:32 pm

              Well, they’re getting the easy ones out of the way first so that they can have more time to concentrate on the harder ones. It’s moving with urgency, and that’s quite refreshing.

              24, R, TN-09
              Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

            • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 6:36 pm

              Trump has another 60 or so appointments he can make for the judiciary from states with two GOP senators. So at this pace 10 or so per month DOJ/Whitehouse/Senate Judiciary can keep going until December 2017 with those nominations.

              The White House/D senators/Grassley are doing a kubaki dance right. D Senators are all insisting that Trump take their cram down nominees from “judicial commissions”. In one state D senators set up a commission with 4 liberal democratic trial lawyers on it and asked them to find a nominee for a spot. Folks commissions work just fine when liberal Ds send liberal D names to a liberal President. So right now all the parties are working masks espousing the well written lines. That is part of the reason Grassley is being patience on highly qualified circuit court nominees from states with D senators. He is letting them stew in their juices. If they continue to stall then it will be time to upend the Blue Slip but no reason to act right now. Ditto for other nominations. Talk to the Ds but nothing happens then you act.

        • Jon July 13, 2017 at 7:19 pm

          Also, I wonder how many Democrats voted against Bush simply because of his last name.

          45, M, MO-02

          • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 7:24 pm

            Bush did some blogging–that might disqualify me from a future appointment-not what I written but rather my poor grammar and spelling. No seriousily Bush did blog on some legal/political issues. That cost him some votes but he is Mitch’s guy so he will get through.

      • HS July 13, 2017 at 6:13 pm

        Maybe because the other guys name is “Bush”? 😉

    • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 7:43 pm

      The Senate Wednesday approved Trump’s first district court nominee, David Nye, with bipartisan support 100-0.

      • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 10:02 pm

        1 district court judge down and a 130 to go! You start with a single step–130 current or future vacancies in district court seats.

        Of the atmosphere is poisonous for the judicial confirmation process. The Ds did an unprecedented attack on Bush 43 Circuit court nominees. They also forced forced Bush 43 to make many compromises on lower and upper court nominations. Heck Bush 43 started the process with his hand out in cooperation and compromise and the Ds stomped on his fingers. Then Obama and his DOJ ran over the Rs and unlike Bush made very few or any compromises in 2009-2012. Then in 2013 they changed the rules and nuked judges in with 51 votes. Payback is heck and the GOP slow walked Obama nominees in 2015/2016 plus that Garland matter happened.

        So one is done but as Ringo said “you know it don’t come easy”.

      • w920us July 13, 2017 at 10:13 pm

        I read somewhere that Nye was a compromise nominee from the 2 Republican US Senators and Obama. And they agreed to move it forward this session.

        Also why does Idaho only have 2 District court justices, Delaware is smaller and yet has 4. I’m assuming the fact that Delaware is more urbanized and has a lot of companies incorporated in the state are possible factors.

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

        • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 10:37 pm

          Delaware gets a ton of commercial and patent litigation so it makes sense that it has more judges than the average small state. That being said, it would make sense for Idaho to have 3 judges since MT, WY, and SD all do and are smaller than Idaho. Vermont and North Dakota are the only other states with only 2. Putting a judge in the eastern half of the state would seem to be a good idea.

        • rdelbov July 13, 2017 at 10:40 pm

          Bingo corporate America is incorporated in Delaware so many lawsuits start there. ID does need another district court spot but that is another matter. Nye was a compromise judge as was another judge in OK–Obama DOJ finally smelled the roses in 2015 and started to work with some GOP senators.

          Here’s a good article about Rhode Island Senators and their squabble over one judgeship.


          Basically D senators say that there is a long tradition of senators picking judicial nominees in Rhode Island–you bet when senators are of the same party as the man in the White house. Senators from other parties historically don’t pick judicial nominees. Kinda hard to compromise on one judgeship-tough to cut this loaf in halve. Stay tuned.

  • zbigreddogz July 13, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    Reichert will win easily barring an epic landslide even bloodier than 2008 (which he survived, in a worse district). He’s very well liked personally and that part of the state splits tickets a lot anyway. I wouldn’t be too concerned if I were him.

    • Vosmyorka July 13, 2017 at 4:37 pm

      This is mostly because Reichert had the good luck of twice facing Darcy Burner, the comically inept Martha Coakley of Washington State who in 2016 ran for a state House seat that voted Clinton 55/37 (and Obama 54/44), gave Democrats a 54/46 advantage in the combined primary…and still lost the general by 8 points, 54/46, running 9 points behind Hillary. If he faces Burner again, sure Reichert will be reelected, but I don’t know that he can count on that sort of luck.

      This is further supported by WA-8 being one of the very few seats in the country to swing Democratic between 2008-2010 (when Democrats ditched Burner and ran a normal candidate), when Reichert’s win actually narrowed from 53/47 to 52/48. Reichert’s a popular guy who’s been around for a while and has a lot of advantages, but he can’t afford to be asleep at the wheel.

      Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3. Male, Russoanglohispanophone.

      • jncca July 13, 2017 at 9:16 pm

        Darcy’s problem isn’t that she’s a Coakley, it’s that she’s a Scott Garrett (an extremist in a moderate district).

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

  • BostonPatriot July 13, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    Fun fact: Shiva Ayyadurai’s ex-wife is Fran Drescher from The Nanny, who briefly sought the appointment to Hillary Clinton’s Senate seat (as a Democrat) in 2009.

    • rdw72777 July 13, 2017 at 4:38 pm

      Well if there’s any reason to support Kirsten Gillibrand’s appointment it’s that it helped keep Fran Drescher’s voice away from a microphone.

      • HS July 13, 2017 at 6:15 pm

        She can talk normally. She once demonstrated that on a talk show. The voice apparently got her jobs. I remember reading that the Nanny was very popular in China because they loved her voice.

        • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 7:19 pm

          Yeah I’m surprised the show is popular in China because a lot of the humor has to do with the Nanny being from a lower middle class background in Queens vs the wealthy Manhattan WASP who is her employer. I don’t think someone in Shanghai would understand the differences between the social classes of the NYC boroughs, so it must be the voice they like. There was some movie (I forget the name) where one character says of another “She is a nobody- she’s from Queens!” And for the record although I live in Manhattan now, I’m also originally a “nobody” from Queens.

          • HS July 13, 2017 at 7:54 pm

            She was popular in China without translation. They didn’t understand what she was saying but liked her voice.

            • TheWizardOf144 July 13, 2017 at 7:57 pm

              Kind of like Americans who watch “the Big Bang Theory”…bazinga!

  • Ryan_in_SEPA July 13, 2017 at 4:49 pm


    Philly Interim DA appointment applicants include Lynne Abraham, and several former judges including a Republican. Any of these candidates could be a stalking horse for the Republican to withdraw and get the Republican line.

    31, PA-6, fiscally conservative communitarian, Giant Meteor 2020 - Just End It Already!

  • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Can we now officially call Kasich and Sandoval traitors? These two clowns seem to be working harder to save medicaid, a massive budget busting entitlement that doesn’t even work than the Democrats do. Geez, what is Sandoval even good for? The guy’s socially liberal, and all he’s done in Nevada is raise taxes and spending. He got an F from the Cato Institute. His school choice thing got struck down anyways. Seriously what good has that guy done? And Kasich is such a joke. Not only is he working to save Medicaid, and he expanded medicaid, he’s also pushing redistricting reform. And he RAISED corporate taxes to add some more tax breaks to the tax code, a terrible move for economic growth. I really dislike these two.

    Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • edtorres04 July 13, 2017 at 5:51 pm

      Kasich is absolutely a traitor and has ticked me off more than anyone. He is the ultimate RINO at this state in his career.

      Sandoval is a different story. Nevada has no income tax nor has he ever proposed it. His tax increase was to expand school choice. I’m not happy with him on this issue though.

      • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 6:06 pm

        Nevada has no income tax, but Sandoval actually created a Business gross receipt tax which is one of the worst taxes out there for economic growth and is worse than income tax. And the school choice doesn’t even work because it wasn’t made sustainable. There is $0 in funding for Education Saving Accounts this year because Dems won’t fund it because they’re beholden to teacher’s unions. A permanent tax increase for a temporary school choice program that Dems can easily shut down was a stupid idea. And he’s not even socially conservative either

        Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 7:32 pm

      Yup, keep the GOP as small a tent as possible!


      • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 7:43 pm

        There’s big tent, and then there’s people who are socially liberal and oppose entitlement reform and raise taxes and raise spending like Sandoval. Why do we want those people in our party? Please tell me what they have offered to our party. He’s currently undermining our Obamacare repeal in a way that a Democrat couldn’t

        Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

        • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 7:53 pm

          The intolerance for social liberals/moderates in the party is a key reason why I left the GOP in 2013. Ideologically, the party is basically devoid of non-staunch conservatives at this point, though has also alienated many of the neoconservatives (of which I’ve long considered myself). Moderates have been completely abandoned by both parties.


          • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 8:03 pm

            But its not just his social liberalism. It’s that he also doesn’t do anything conservative fiscally. During his tenure as Governor, Sandoval increased spending, expanded Medical, and raised taxes. What did he do that Republicans like? Literally nothing. Just school choice program that Democrats defunded and he caved on and signed the bill with no funding for it anyways. And Kasich, he made the tax code WORSE.. he made it more convoluted and raised business taxes. And he failed to pass right to work despite nearly every state he’s surrounded by passing it. And he expanded Medicaid with no concessions.

            And it’s clear to me from your other comments you don’t want big tent. You just want a smal tent full of moderate elitists as you don’t accept kid rock and Donald trump

            Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

            • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 8:15 pm

              Uh…I don’t think so. My ideal GOP would be something like 20 percent Susan Collins moderates, 40 percent Paul Ryan conservatives and 20 percent Breitbart-loving right-wingers. You, I imagine, would like the moderates purged and the other two factions to go 50-50. Fine. But I don’t think such is sustainable if Democrats ever manage to get their shit together and find a way to bring in the disaffected Republican-leaning moderates.


              • Son_of_the_South July 13, 2017 at 8:24 pm

                What would the other 20% be?

                24, R, TN-09
                Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

                • roguemapper July 13, 2017 at 8:26 pm

                  Russian hackers.

                  Dem NC-11

                  • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 8:32 pm

                    Ha! How about 10 percent Rand Paul Libertarians and I’ll throw an extra 5 percent a piece to the moderates and far right-wingers.


              • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 8:39 pm

                That’s where you’re wrong, I’m perfectly fine with the Susan Collins Moderates, when they’re in Maine like Susan Collins is. In Nevada, a swing state, we should be running Conservatives or Moderate conservatives, not Sandoval’s who should be running in Rhode Island like Chafee. In Wyoming, our party should be 50-50 Paul Ryan Breitbart types sure, and in Massachusetts we should be >50% moderates

                Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

            • krazen1211 July 13, 2017 at 9:34 pm

              Trump is quite socially liberal for a Republican. Some folks want to pretend like all the dots in the top left don’t exist.


              My gut check on this is that Kasich is being his typical turd self….but that Sandoval is being called in by Heller as a pretext to vote one way or another. Sandoval doesn’t have the lengthy history of preening to the MSNBC cameras and constantly sounding off on federal issues.

              • HS July 13, 2017 at 10:51 pm

                Trump is governing like an all around moderate Republican. Moderate on social issues, economic issues, and foreign policy. When it comes to social issues, no other Republican has ever been so far to the left.

                The elite Republicans who don’t like him are not really opposed to him based on any issues. Some don’t like him because of his poor judgment, his lack of any real ideology, or his impulsiveness. Or his scandalous behavior. And a lot just don’t like him because they think of him as low class, and beneath them.

  • VastBlightKingConspiracy July 13, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    I can’t say this is substantially important because spelling is overrated, but it is pretty amusing to see.


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

    • TennesseeMike July 13, 2017 at 6:43 pm

      I’m not a good speller but even I know this is wrong. LOL

      TN-2 District. A Social and Fiscal Conservative Republican

    • Manhatlibertarian July 13, 2017 at 7:03 pm

      I think the Medicad program is much better than Medicaid. Wait- what do you mean there is no Medicad program?

      • shamlet July 13, 2017 at 8:00 pm

        Of course there is, it’s a program to provide treatment for men with VDs! (ok, sorry but I couldn’t resist)

        R, MD-7. Put not your trust in princes. Process is more important than outcome.

  • Left Coast Libertarian July 13, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    Kid Rock is in?

    I’m sure some will groan at Kid Rock running but this is a seat Republicans are unlikely to win otherwise and 2018 is likely to be a year the GOP will do worse than it has recently. Kid Rock is quite Trumpian, so it’d be interesting to see how a Trumpist candidate does.

    • andyroo312 July 13, 2017 at 7:34 pm

      From the party of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan to the party of Donald Trump and Kid Rock…


      • HoneyBee July 13, 2017 at 7:45 pm

        Ronald Reagan…. The guy who before becoming Governor of California was just …. An actor

        Former Anti-Trump Rubio supporter in the primaries. Trump is now my favorite Republican

    • Republican Michigander July 13, 2017 at 8:42 pm

      “””I’m sure some will groan at Kid Rock running but this is a seat Republicans are unlikely to win otherwise and 2018 is likely to be a year the GOP will do worse than it has recently. Kid Rock is quite Trumpian, so it’d be interesting to see how a Trumpist candidate does.””””

      I’m not ready to write off Justice Bob Young or Lena Epstein. I’ll vote for Robert Ritchie over Stabenow because Stabenow is beyond worthless, but A. He’s not in yet. B. Campaign season hasn’t started.

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

    • Izengabe July 14, 2017 at 12:02 am

      @Shamlet how quickly can we put together a Kid Rock vs Debbie Stabenow MI-Sen poll?

      Follow me on Twitter: @Izengabe_

  • Greyhound July 13, 2017 at 10:17 pm

    Interesting UK poll results here on combating the deficit:

    Brits think that the way the government is cutting the deficit is unfair by a 56-20 margin, but still think it is necessary by a 43-33 margin.

    R, 26, CA-18. Anti-Anti-Trump

    • Ryan_in_SEPA July 13, 2017 at 10:23 pm

      That is progress. At least people support cuts even if they hate the way they are done.

      31, PA-6, fiscally conservative communitarian, Giant Meteor 2020 - Just End It Already!

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