Monday :: February 01, 2016

Trump's Iowa Speech: Iowa We Love You

"I think I might come here and buy a farm."

The gracious Donald Trump showed up tonight. He loves Iowans. He congratulates the others. He loves New Hampshire and South Carolina.

His wife looks gorgeous. His sons are on hand, they've been in Iowa giving speeches. I think Ivanka was on the left with her husband but I was typing and didn't really see. (Corrected: His daughter with Marla Trump is not Vanessa but Tiffany. So I have no idea who the blond was with his sons.)

Trump says he will get the Republican nomination and beat Hillary or Bernie or "whoever the hell they throw up."

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Iowa Caucus Coverage and Results

Update: I'm done for the night. Congratulations, Hillary. These numbers are from the Iowa Democratic Party's caucus site. 1632 of 1683 precincts reporting. (Results include Tele-Caucus and the Satellite Caucus.)

Here's the County map showing winners at midnight, Iowa time. Looks to me like Hillary won a lot more counties.

At 538: David Wasserman writes at 10:52 PM:

Reality check: A tie in Iowa is actually a win for Clinton. According to our targets at the Cook Political Report, Bernie Sanders would have needed to win twice as many delegates as Clinton in Iowa to be "on track" for the nomination. He's nowhere near that tonight.

Update: Hillary is at 49.9%.

Update: Bernie changes his mind again. Now Bernie's flying off to New Hampshire after all tonight. He's not going to demand an actual vote total, but claim a "moral victory." Translation: He didn't win. Spin: It's a tie. Reality: A tie is if they each get 49.75%. If either gets more, he or she wins Iowa. (With O'Malley getting .5%, that leaves 99.5%.) [More...]

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Iowa Still Up for Grabs?

Hillary Clinton has a three point lead in the final Selzer poll -- also called the Bloomberg/Des Moines Register poll -- before today's Iowa caucuses. Here are the poll questions and the methodology.

Nate Silver at 538 says Hillary may just win Iowa. He opines Bernie Sanders is close, but has failed to grab the momentum. (Feel free to disagree with him, but skip the name-calling and personal attacks or your comment will be deleted. They aren't welcome here as to anyone.)

538 also favorably dissects the historical accuracy of Selzer's Iowa poll (there's a reason it's called the best of the Iowa polls, but still, it's not perfect.) [More...]

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Saturday :: January 30, 2016

Saturday Night Open Thread

What I'm watching: The X Games in Aspen (here's today's updated schedule) and next the Screen Actor's Guild Awards (Red carpet airing now on E.)

I've gone days without blogging. The biggest reason is both the mouse and the track pad on my laptop are on the fritz. They alternate between not doing anything and all of a sudden moving to a different page. The hard drive is just about full, making it very slow. (And there's nothing I feel like moving to an external drive.) [More....]

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UPDATE - Clinton 45- Sanders 42- O'Malley 3.

Trump 28, Cruz 23, Rubio 15, Carson 10.

6:45 pm Eastern time tonight, Ann Selzer drops her final Iowa poll. For those who don't know Selzer is the gold standard for Iowa - THE poll. So we'll know a bit better what to expect at the Iowa caucus then.

But here's what we've always known - the Iowa caucus on the Dem side is a travesty. There are many reasons why it should not go first - mostly because it is basically an all white state (like NH that follows it), thoroughly unrepresentative of the demographics of the Democratic Party.

But the actual Dem caucus process itself is ridiculously undemocratic. There is no secret ballot. There is no connecting statewide votes with actual delegates chosen. There is a 15% viability requirement PER PRECINCT! It is truly awful in every sense.

Ironically, it's possible Sanders will get more voters out Monday night and "lose" the caucuses. We'll never actually know as vote totals are not reported just delegate counts.

It's long past time to end the travesty known as the Iowa Caucus going first in Presidential primaries.

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eGhazi: Same BS IC story: different day

Josh Gerstein and Rachel Bade:

The furor over Hillary Clinton's use of a private email account grew more serious for the Democratic presidential front-runner Friday as the State Department designated 22 of the messages from her account "top secret." [. . .]

"These documents were not marked classified at the time they were sent [and they weren't sent by Clinton imo - BTD my emhphasis] ," Kirby said in a statement.

Sound familiar? It should because it is the same story I've been writing about since this nonsense started. See in particular State v. IC classification battles:

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Friday :: January 29, 2016

Friday Open Thread

Busy day. I'll write a little bit on Iowa and EGhazi (same story, different day) tomorrow.

Open Thread.

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Thursday :: January 28, 2016

Thursday Open Thread


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Wednesday :: January 27, 2016

Wednesday Open Thread


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Tuesday :: January 26, 2016

Assuming the worst: Clinton on Lincoln and Reconstruction

At last night's Dem forum, when asked who her favorite President was, Hillary Clinton picked Abraham Lincoln and said:

You know, he was willing to reconcile and forgive. And I don't know what our country might have been like had he not been murdered, but I bet that it might have been a little less rancorous, a little more forgiving and tolerant, that might possibly have brought people back together more quickly.

But instead, you know, we had Reconstruction, we had the re-instigation of segregation and Jim Crow. We had people in the South feeling totally discouraged and defiant. So, I really do believe he could have very well put us on a different path.

Ta Nahisi Coates thinks Clinton was adopting the Dunning School view of Reconstruction:

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Anti-Abortion Activists Indicted Over Planned Parenthood Videos

A grand jury in Houston indicted two people who are part of the group that made headlines last year with videos falsely claiming Planned Parenthood sold organs of aborted fetuses.

The Houston grand jury, which was empaneled to investigate Planned Parenthood after the Center for Medical Progress released its undercover footage last year, indicted the center's founder and another activist on Monday. The indictment was the first time anyone with the anti-abortion group has been charged criminally since the videos began surfacing last year.

Planned Parenthood was cleared of any wrongdoing. [More...]

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Obama Ends Solitary for Juveniles in Federal Prisons

Here is President Obama's op-ed in today's Washington Post explaining why he has ordered the end of solitary confinement for juveniles in federal prisons.

Here is the Justice Department report on the effects of solitary confinement -- Obama says he adopted its recommendations. The report has 50 guiding principles. Obama writes:

The Justice Department has completed its review, and I am adopting its recommendations to reform the federal prison system. These include banning solitary confinement for juveniles and as a response to low-level infractions, expanding treatment for the mentally ill and increasing the amount of time inmates in solitary can spend outside of their cells. These steps will affect some 10,000 federal prisoners held in solitary confinement — and hopefully serve as a model for state and local corrections systems. And I will direct all relevant federal agencies to review these principles and report back to me with a plan to address their use of solitary confinement.


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Monday :: January 25, 2016

Monday Open Thread


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Obama: Media was harder on Clinton than me in 2008

Those of you who lived the 2008 election with us at Talk Left will be interested to hear this from President Obama in his interview with Politico's Glenn Thrush:

Obama hammered away at the notion that the New York senator was on the wrong side of generational change, and his team successfully convinced reporters that every Clinton campaign swipe was an underhanded personal attack – something he’s less than proud of in retrospect.

“The truth is, in 2007 and 2008, sometimes my supporters and my staff I think got too huffy about what were legitimate questions she was raising,” he admitted. “And there were times where I think the media probably was a little unfair to her and tilted a little my way in calling her out.”

Sound familiar? Anyway, the entire interview is basically a de facto endorsement of Hillary Clinton for President.

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Sunday :: January 24, 2016

Is Trump Taking Supporters for Granted?

Donald Trump:

"I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot someone and I wouldn't lose any voters. Okay? It's like incredible."

I don't even know how to respond to this. If you do, feel free to weigh in.

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