Sen. Evan Bayh Won't Seek Re-election

Indiana Senator Evan Bayh is announcing today he will not seek re-election.

The party faces several other retirements -- Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., both have said they will not seek reelection -- and challenges ahead in trying to hold on to those seats, among a range of others.

Republicans need 10 seats to re-take the Senate. Will they get them?

Republicans are favored to win in North Dakota. They may also be able to capture Vice President Joe Biden's old Senate seat in Delaware.

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    It's possible (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:03:37 PM EST
    And as was often observed in 2006, the House has never flipped without the Senate, though the Senate has flipped without the House.

    I'm more interested in what happened with Bayh. I think there's more to the story.

    Maybe something to do with Wellpoint? (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by esmense on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:27:08 PM EST
    His wife & Wellpoint? Himself & Wellpoint? Or maybe just a chance to make a lot of money outside the Senate?

    He will certainly become a lobbyist (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:36:02 PM EST
    for one of the many health care insurers or financial firms that have made his political career possible, and made him the very rich man that he is today.

    Bayh is a major schm*ck, IMO. He is a deterrant to Democratic policies. I'm glad to see him go.


    Even if we lose that seat? (none / 0) (#62)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:27:13 PM EST
    In a state like Indiana, we lose a seat.

    No, the republicans won't take over the Senate but they might come close, close enough to scare some the weak democrats into caving more for what republicans want.  


    Looks to me like Bayh wants the seat to go GOP (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:37:18 PM EST
    How do you square your loyalty to the party with that? His bashing of Congress is a thinly-veiled bashing of the Dems -- and not because he thinks they should be more progressive, but because he thinks they should parrot the GOP line more often.

    Haven't we been loyally voting per the "More and better Democrats" angle since 2006? Where has it gotten us? We end up with Nelsons, Lincolns, Landrieus and Bayhs. I'm sorry, but Bayh has been horrible for our party since the 2008 elections. He has actively worked against solid Democratic principles. And for many years, he has voted on behalf of insurance/pharma, voted on behalf of banks and credit card companies, and much less for transparency and accountability on our behalf.

    At some point, the "more and better Democrats" angle has to split and become one or the other. If more means more like Bayh, then count me out. I'm only voting for "better" Democrats from now on.


    Agree (none / 0) (#7)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:18:15 PM EST
    with your comment about Bayh.  Wonder if his pull-out stopped it from coming out or if we will eventually know.

    Hoosier that you are (none / 0) (#10)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:29:31 PM EST
    perhaps you can weigh in on a discussion in the family, which includes many Hoosiers.  Their sense is that outside of Gary, the Chicago Way is not welcome.  That is, the White House way under Rahm Emanuel may be particularly anethema to Bayh?

    Bayh had no problem (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:04:06 PM EST
     with the the Chicago Way or Rahm when he was campaigning all over the state for Obama as the Dem nominee.   Of course he was hoping for a VP nod at that time.

    And even if what you say is true, Cream,  why get out today?  Why not 1 month ago.  It isn't like Rahm just appeared last week  Why be actively involved in framing your potential opponents and fund raising and then days before the filing dealine suddenly drop out.

    Also, everyone I've talked with here is shocked.  I'm in Lake County -- Dem heaven -- but nobody saw this coming.   I do volunteer in local politics and I do know people in holding office in Hammond, East Chicago, Hobart, Griffith, Merrillville and everyone is pretty shocked.


    Bayh did initially and strongly support Hillary.so (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by jawbone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:05:23 PM EST
    maybe there's something going on between WH and Bayh???

    Bayh supported Hillary (none / 0) (#87)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 11:36:16 PM EST
    solely because it looked like she was a lock to win in the beginning.

    I grudgingly give him credit for not jumping ship like some others did.


    Thanks, that makes sense (none / 0) (#19)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:10:17 PM EST
    so I gather that the Hoosiers in the family on email about this also are just reacting fast in shock.  Btw, some are in central Indiana, i.e., Indianapolis, and more are in southern Indiana.  So all of them seem to dislike Chicago intensely. :-)

    I wonder if Bayh did get a call (none / 0) (#21)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:15:21 PM EST
    though, from the White House -- as happened to the only Dem candidate (then) for governor in my state.  (Also another strong Clinton supporter, but who knows whether that is a factor.)

    That also was followed by a shocking sudden withdrawal, no explanation, also followed by a fast scramble to pressure a Dem into running, and from behind in terms of lining up funding.  Perhaps it really is the party sending word that there will be little such support, monetary or otherwise?

    It just seems odd to see this scenario of sudden announcements, late in the process, playing out in several places.  If it turns out there was a call from the White House slash party headquarters. . . .


    But the Dem Party (none / 0) (#27)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:26:43 PM EST
    and strategists had just "knee-capped" (liked this discription from another site) Bayh's biggest threat Dan Coats.  They were working with Bayh's people. This was happening just 2 weeks ago and was successful.   Bayh has a huge amount of money; he had already damaged Coats; he was ahead in the polls...

    And what would be the WH motive?  Get someone more conservative than Bayh?  Hard to do.  Get someone more liberal than Bayh? Hard to get elected.  Without Bayh I think Dems lose the seat.  Hope I'm wrong.


    Hope so, too (none / 0) (#30)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:27:31 PM EST
    but the same questions surfaced here.

    Cream City, is there a blog which covered that WI (none / 0) (#58)
    by jawbone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:19:58 PM EST
    situation you refer to? Thnx. I know so little of what's going on in WI.

    Isn't Tom Barrett, now mayor of Milwaukee, running for Gov on the Dem ticket?


    Yes, on the probability of finding a Dem (none / 0) (#35)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:32:04 PM EST
    to run this late in the game, the article Jerlayn linked says:

    In order to file for the Republican or Democratic primaries in Indiana, set for May 4, 2010, a candidate needs to deliver a petition containing at least 4,500 signatures including at least 500 signatures form each of the state's nine congressional districts. According to the Indiana Secretary of State's candidate handbook, those petitions can be delivered no later than tomorrow at noon local time.

    It appears unlikely that any minor Democratic candidate is likely to have acquired the necessary signatures by tomorrow's deadline, leaving the Democratic primary ballot vacant for U.S. Senate.

    Which leads me to believe that Bayh is playing a game of his own. Bashing the Congress, bashing the partisanship, praising Lugar... excuse me if it looks crystal clear that Bayh wants to see a Republican take his seat.


    That's the stunner in this (none / 0) (#43)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:42:47 PM EST
    although lively comments on some Indiana media sites suggest there is serious searching afoot by Dems to find an out to find more time.  Can't imagine how, but it's ever an interesting state.

    Here's one Hoosier (none / 0) (#50)
    by Slado on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:03:14 PM EST
    That hopes you're right.

    I wish Daniels would run.  He'd win going away.

    Of course he is our next president after all!


    Tamyra D'Ippolito interview is interesting. (none / 0) (#54)
    by Anne on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:10:03 PM EST
    From the FDL News Desk (bold is mine):

    D'Ippolito's potential presence on the primary ballot complicates the ability for Indiana Democrats to handpick a nominee. If nobody qualifies for the primary, Indiana Dems can choose the candidate. But if D'Ippolito qualifies, then she would be the only candidate on that primary ballot, and Brad Ellsworth or Baron Hill or whoever would have to run a write-in campaign to defeat her in that primary in May.

    So how's D'Ippolito doing? She's collected 3,500 of the 4,500 signatures, 500 in each Congressional district in Indiana, which are needed by noon tomorrow in order to qualify. D'Ippolito said that she's particularly short in IN-08, in the Terre Haute/Evansville area of the district. Her campaign manager has contacted all of the heads of the county Democratic parties asking them if they would help her get on the ballot.

    But she's not getting the sense that they want to be helpful in that effort. "Politics in Indiana is the old boy's school. They're getting ready to put one of their own in," D'Ippolito, a cafe owner in Bloomington who gained experience in politics running a primary campaign for Gretchen Clearwater in 2006. "My gut feeling tells me they're meeting in a room, I don't know if they're smoking cigars," D'Ippolito said, basically working under the assumption that Bayh's announcement was timed so the state party could pick the nominee by themselves. "The timing of this is amazing."

    Too tin-foil-y?


    Yep, filing date be d*mned, word is (none / 0) (#59)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:20:27 PM EST
    that something is up -- as the party has several months more to the deadline for simply can putting forward a candidate picked by the state party's central committee.  

    But I'll hold hope for the gutsy cafe owner from the college town.


    Why would the party pull out support now? (none / 0) (#63)
    by BrassTacks on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:30:57 PM EST
    When it all but guarantees the election of a republican?  Even if the WH can't stand Bayh, he's better than a republican.  I just don't see them yanking support now, it's not in their best interests.  And why did Bayh pull out when he was running so far ahead?  Something else has happened.  Someone found out something about him that would kill his chances of winning.  That's my best guess.  

    They wouldn't, and he (none / 0) (#71)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:26:47 PM EST
    wouldn't have needed it anyway.  It's just very silly speculation based on the idea that Obama would want to crush any Hillary supporter just out of spite.  He's not that dumb, nor is he, clearly, that interested.

    I doubt there's any lurking scandal, either.  The guy is just a prim, pompous, self-loving p**ck who wants to take his ball and go home if he can't have things his way.


    I think he's setting up for a 2016 run for Prez. (none / 0) (#73)
    by steviez314 on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:54:52 PM EST
    He'll only be 60 yrs old, and it's probably better to be in the private or educational sector for a while than to be in the most disfunctional legislative body that has a 10% job approval rating.

    Yes, and good luck to him (none / 0) (#86)
    by gyrfalcon on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 11:34:48 PM EST
    He's slightly less charismatic than Tim Pawlenty, and three times as smarmy.  What's going to run on, bipartisanship and "change you can believe in"?  Hah.

    A long time ago... (none / 0) (#75)
    by christinep on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 05:21:42 PM EST
    when I went to IU (and worked in Indiana politics) I also worked my university precinct for the father, Senator Birch Bayh. Frankly, to this day, it does appear that the entire Bayh family remains highly regarded in the state. While some here may cringe at the son's more conservative pronouncements, a look at the entire voting record would indicate a strong centrist very acceptable to the overall party and more. It does appear, tho, that Sen. Evan Bayh has positioned himself a bit more moderately in recent days. So...I see a 54 year old, good-looking and with a good-looking family, who will have served two full terms in the US Senate and two full terms as Indiana Governor plus earlier state administration and legal experience. He has consistently outpaced all others in votes (including Republicans) in a "red state." Not only a "red state," but a state in the voter-important rust-belt. As Hoosiers-while-we-were-in-college, my husband & I have spent the better part of today wondering. Taking what I just wrote and looking at other examples over the years, I would say that Evan Bayh has positioned himself well to do whatever he wants in the years ahead. His own statement (and his earlier history) notes his preference for an executive position. Whether he heads a firm, college, or non-profit, well...the persona amplified by the resume could potentially set the path for wherever he wants to go after that. Uh, thats what I think.

    The Democrats are looking at 52 right (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by tigercourse on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:06:43 PM EST
    now. 51 if you include Illinois. I'd like to see some polling for the Wisconsin race. I don't expect it to be good news. Every week the news gets worse for Democrats, so I wouldn't really be surprised if we lost the Senate.

    If Joe is in a position to flip it, I think (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:08:28 PM EST
    there's a good chance he will this time. That's the only way he gets a political future (Republican primary in 2012).

    I doubt Joe has much of a chance in '12 (none / 0) (#6)
    by tigercourse on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:14:49 PM EST
    no matter what. I guess it will come down to what either side offers him. Whatever the outcome, I assume he'll be pretty powerful.

    Fortunately for Feingold (none / 0) (#11)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:31:18 PM EST
    questions are arising as to the GOP candidate with the most money, a newcomer to politics (but then, so was Kohl, the Dem member with more money than any member in either house).

    However, there are House seats in serious trouble.


    Codicil: That is, unless Tommy (none / 0) (#25)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:23:08 PM EST
    the Thompson stops doing his Brett Favre imitation, drops the lucrative post-Cabinet and post-governor board seats and consultant moneymakers, gets a fresh bottle of Grecian Formula , and really does miss politics so much that he runs for Feingold's seat.  Then the political landscape changes.

    I still don't see it for the fiscal sacrifice, but Thompson is a strange one.


    If so then that's the end for Obama (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Saul on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:12:57 PM EST
    If Obama could not get any major pieces of legislation done with his filibuster proof majority when he had it how can he do anything when you will have less.

    Only option now for Obama is reconciliation if the senate has the guts to do it.

    So if Dem lose both houses later then what do they do?  Filibuster every bill  the republicans want.  
    It never ends.  Just a vicious cycle.

    I would think a Repub (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:23:20 PM EST
    House and Senate would be a good think for Obama.  The few Republican ideas are horrible and there answer for every problem is tax cuts for the rich and tort reform.

    Obama would seem measured and reasonable compared to them.  And he could run against the do-nothing obstructionist Republicans.  What can you say about the Senate now?  The do-nothign, cowardly obstructionist Democrats?  It's true but a Dem President can't really make that a platform can he?

    Not saying this to argue that it's ok for the Repubs to take back House and Senate. Though the way the Senate is now -- I really do think it would be better if some of the Dems don't return.


    It wouldn't surprise me (none / 0) (#14)
    by BDB on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:57:55 PM EST
    if there are some at the WH who think this way since it's how Clinton won again in 1996.  But they forget a little thing that came after - impeachment.  Now, I don't expect the GOP to impeach Obama, but losing either house gives them subpoena power and Obama is no Clinton when it comes to defending himself against the VRWC.  I just don't think he's personally tough enough to withstand 1,000 subpoenas to his Administration.  He can't stand up to the GOP now when they're in the minority.

    But isn't the bigger (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:10:32 PM EST
    problem the Senate Democrats.  I mean what is there problem?  They are the ones that seem to live in fear of the GOP.   Their egos are too big to take orders from the WH.  What is there excuse?

    Well, there you are. (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by brodie on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:32:25 PM EST
    Any sane, sensible WH strategist looking at 2010 has to consider the very real potential for dire consequences for Obama should Repubs regain control of one of the chambers of Congress.  Maybe not impeachment -- too soon after 1998 -- but bogus investigations up the wazoo leading up to 2012.

    Hopefully WH political operatives are working on the understanding that it's better the devil you know than the devil you don't, and will now take immediate steps to chart a different, more aggressive course over the next 8 months going into November.  Luckily for them and us, they do have a few more months to correct things before the voters correct things for them.


    Please - why the hell would they impeach him? (none / 0) (#26)
    by DFLer on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:26:35 PM EST
    on what grounds?

    DFLer, when was the last (none / 0) (#38)
    by brodie on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:34:27 PM EST
    time Repubs needed grounds, legit or not, to impeach?

    In the words of that great Repub statesman, Jerry Ford, Impeachment is what a majority of the House says it is.


    You think they need sensible or legitmate (none / 0) (#39)
    by esmense on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:35:03 PM EST
    grounds. They don't accept the legitimacy of any Democrat. Period.

    Perhaps som trumped up voting fraud/ACORN scandal?


    brodie-Esmense yes but good lord would they (none / 0) (#52)
    by DFLer on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:06:36 PM EST
    really try that...it come off sooo.....dare I say teabagger?

    Haven't found any limit to the gall of these (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by esmense on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:21:03 PM EST
    people so far. And didn't that pornographic "report" Ken Starr produced make it clear these people have absolutely no shame, sense of decency or idea of morality other than "whatever we decide to do is good?"

    It's one of the convenient aspects of embracing a religion based on faith rather than works. As long as you believe the right things, nothing you do can be wrong.

    Of course, everything done by people who believe wrong (that is, not like you) is wrong (and therefore there are no rules that need to be observed and no harm that people of "faith" can't use to destroy them.)


    He wants a Republican Congress (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by dainla on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:29:24 PM EST
    I'm not shedding any tears (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by s5 on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:32:12 PM EST
    We're better off without Senators like Bayh and Lieberman. They strut around supporting genuinely bad ideas in the name of "centrism", which does little else but to undermine the caucus from within. At this point I'm thinking we could get a lot more done with a bare majority and leadership other than Harry Reid.

    I totally agree (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by esmense on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:29:53 PM EST
    Bayh has been the absolute epitome of the kind of "centrist" empty suit who accomplishes little (and mostly for the other side) and consistently presents an obstacle to passing measures that are vitally needed.

    It would be a bare majority that includes (none / 0) (#13)
    by tigercourse on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:35:20 PM EST
    Ben Nelson and still plenty of other conservative Democrats. So I doubt we'd get any further.

    Agree (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by MO Blue on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:07:08 PM EST
    Even if the Dems retain a bare majority in the Senate, the Senate will have a Republican ideology majority for voting purposes. Can't understand why many would want to eliminate the filibuster when it would only favor a Republican agenda.

    Maybe a challenge run for 2012? (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by jeffhas on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:05:15 PM EST
    I'm not sure, but if Obama's numbers keep going down, someone is going to challenge him... this gives Bayh a head start.

    Additionally, as a close ally to Hillary in '08, he could be the proverbial 'stalking horse'.

    Well... one can dream anyways...

    Bayl as president would be even worse (5.00 / 0) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:08:19 PM EST
    than Obama.

    Birch would have had my vote (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Zorba on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:33:08 PM EST
    But not his son Evan.  Heck, Birch, even though he's 82, would have my vote tomorrow over most of the current Dems.

    I doubt Bayh could get past the primary.. (none / 0) (#22)
    by jeffhas on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:19:30 PM EST
    ... but he's got $12 million in the bank for campaigning... he could bloody up Obama for someone else (or the GOP) if the public sentiment is still sour.

    Nah (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:20:36 PM EST
    If $12M is enough to bloody Obama, then no money at all is necessary.

    $12 won't come close to the same universe as (none / 0) (#80)
    by jeffhas on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:40:02 PM EST
    a win... just bloody.

    Indy Star commentators muse (none / 0) (#28)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:26:44 PM EST
    that Bayh misses being governor, has that big fund for campaigning, and can run again (by Indy law) -- and that this works out for another Indy pol who wants his Senate seat back and could be formidable; that's Coats, whom Bayh replaced, as I recall.

    Other commentators go with the theory that Bayh wants to make some big money and go into industry -- as, after all, his opposition to the public option made big health insurance companies happy, including the one to which he has a nice connection through his wife, the lobbyist for Anthem/Wellpoint.


    But it doesn't work (none / 0) (#55)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:13:05 PM EST
    out well for Mitch Daniels, our current gov.  He has aspirations for the Senate and the Presidency.  He can't run for Senate now, cuz of Bayh's timing.   DK has a front-page diary with a different take on Bayh's timing.  Interesting reading.

    Understood, but a good machine (none / 0) (#57)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:17:04 PM EST
    as I understand exists in Indiana could get 500 signatures in each district overnight.  Really, if the Dems really wanted to do so.  Let's see.

    Way, way worse (none / 0) (#23)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:20:01 PM EST
    Yep and he's boring. And though you (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:32:00 PM EST
    and others think Obama is too much the professor -  at least he's a witty, fun, well-spoken professor.  Bayh is the professor that drones on and puts you to sleep.  

    Believe me (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:43:40 PM EST
    I feel for you! The guy is about as compelling as a glass of milk.

    I like milk! (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by DFLer on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:08:40 PM EST
    (Hey shoe...OT..REALLY like the Weston tribute to the Monk cd, vis a vis my continuing exploration.)

    Glad to hear it! (none / 0) (#70)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:24:36 PM EST
    We can talk more about it on an open thread sometime.

    He put you to sleep (none / 0) (#47)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:48:00 PM EST
    quicker than a glass of warm milk.

    LOL (none / 0) (#48)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:49:38 PM EST
    What? (5.00 / 2) (#60)
    by Upstart Crow on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:24:52 PM EST
    at least he's a witty, fun, well-spoken professor.

    Pardon me, but I hear this often -- how "professorial" BHO is. He was a mere lecturer, for pity's sake.  Those are a dime a dozen at any significant university.

    I understand he managed to finagle tenure as his political fortunes rose, circumventing the usual academic process.

    Maybe I've missed something, but I have yet to hear him say anything profound, compelling, intellectual -- more so than anyone else in politics.

    He dithers and mulls, but I don't associate those qualities with "professorial" or "intellectual." I know plenty of people who are neither who do both.

    This is not meant as a put-down, but I'm genuinely befuddled by this packaging.


    No, not tenured -- (5.00 / 2) (#64)
    by Cream City on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:42:44 PM EST
    he was given the opportunity to commit to a career in academe and work toward tenure but turned down that opportunity to stay in his current career field.  Looks like a good decision (for him, if not for the country just yet, with that jury still out).

    U of Chicago Law School appears to have its own and somewhat unusual bestowing of titles, thus the considerable confusion.  Yes, he was a part-time, sometime teacher.  Elsewhere (even on the U of C campus, it seems), he would have been called a lecturer -- as he was for some time, from records.  Or as he gained in stature, he well could have been offered the title of adjunct assistant (the next untenured level up).  But U of C Law School said his title was assistant professor or something, and it's so rich that it gets to do what it wants.


    Mr. Obama held the academic title of (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by KeysDan on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 05:05:40 PM EST
    Lecturer (1992-1996) and Senior Lecturer (1996-2004) while an Illinois state senator (1996-2004) representing the Hyde Park/Kenwood area of Chicago.   Questions about being a "professor" arose during the campaign and the University of Chicago issued a press release affirming the Lecturer and Senior Lecturer titles as above, but, at the same time,  blurred academic titles by sweeping them into the statement that Obama was a professor at the law school for twelve years.

    Senior lecturer usually is a (none / 0) (#78)
    by observed on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:06:14 PM EST
    permanent teaching position. U Chicago in particular relies heavily on a permanent lecturer staff, so that the faculty has an incredibly light load. I could be wrong, but I think in some departments a Professor may have to teach 1 course or less per semester.

    Thanks! (none / 0) (#85)
    by Upstart Crow on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 08:17:09 PM EST
    Thanks for the clarification Cream City, keys, & observed!

    (He still doesn't seem "professorial" to me -- and that explains why.)


    Senior Lecturer (none / 0) (#88)
    by KeysDan on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 09:22:05 AM EST
    is usually an academic title given to a prominent individual in the field.  Moreover, the position is usually fractional time, and may or may not include remuneration.   For example, Mr. Obama moved from Lecturer to Senior Lecturer at the University of Chicago School of Law when he became a state senator--representing the district in which the University of Chicago is located.  Another example of a Senior Lecturer at the School of Law is Federal Judge (seventh circuit) Richard Posner. (Posner's son, Eric, is a professor at the school of law.)

    Gosh, Posner only a lecturer? (none / 0) (#89)
    by observed on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 10:13:50 AM EST
    Does he publish anything? :P

    Oh, Senior Lecturer. (none / 0) (#90)
    by KeysDan on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 01:35:25 PM EST
    Posner started at the University of Chicago Law School and became a professor. Then Reagan made him a Federal Judge and he later assumed the Senior Lecturer status.

    I know. He's the most cited (none / 0) (#91)
    by observed on Tue Feb 16, 2010 at 04:12:59 PM EST
    jurist, by far---10,000 cites or something like that.
    The point is: Obama clearly got the title as a favor, rather than because he was of the same caliber as Posner.

    Bayh is not going to be president (none / 0) (#32)
    by ruffian on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:28:55 PM EST
    Well, I take that back - maybe if he runs as a Republican.

    I'd sure like to know how you'd salvage this (5.00 / 3) (#42)
    by andgarden on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:38:25 PM EST
    "It might get better" is not a strategy--or a reason for hope.

    Here's a great link that sums it all up (none / 0) (#4)
    by Slado on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 12:09:10 PM EST
    Seats in play

    One can disagree with who is in the lean vs. solid category but the implications are obvious.

    Since dems have more seats they have way more to defend on election day.

    You make a good point (none / 0) (#41)
    by IndiDemGirl on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:37:57 PM EST
    and things do change fast in politics.  But I myself am so depressed, not about Obama, but about the state of the Senate.  Nothing is getting done: they are too entrenched in their ways, their egos are too big, and they seem too cowardly.

    I used to think that our Big Tent philosophy was good. But looking at the Senate I wonder - I see how difficult it makes actually getting something done.

    A big tent or ? (none / 0) (#79)
    by christinep on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:30:59 PM EST
    A purity test? I was having this conversation earlier today. 'Tis true--democracy involves a lot of compromise.

    Check on all that. (none / 0) (#44)
    by brodie on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:43:02 PM EST
    As I noted above, Dems and the Obama admin are lucky it's still only Feb, and they do have the ability to change course and get some positive things done before Nov.

    As for Inouye, I haven't been a fan since I learned how he co-engineered that semi-investigation of Iran-Contra, the one where Dem party leaders meekly allowed Reagan and Poppy to escape scrutiny ("We can't afford another impeachment, so soon after Watergate -- it would tear this country apart!"  grrrrrr ...).

    There's also an age issue here too, though I'm not sure how to deal with that one and not seem cruelly ageist or some such.  I don't believe in term limits, except for fed ct judges, but there might be something to be said for a mandatory retirement age for elected public officials, say, age 80.

    I'm with you on that (none / 0) (#46)
    by shoephone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:46:03 PM EST
    but I'd bring the age cap down to 75 or 76.

    * Self-imposed of course. (Not that many of them would.)


    Age is not the issue (none / 0) (#66)
    by lentinel on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:56:22 PM EST
    I'm not for age limits.
    Nader is, what, 75? And he is sharp as a tack.

    On the other hand, we have people like Rep. Aaron Schock, who seems to be about 12 years old and is as dumb as a post.
    And then there's Bush...


    Geez, have you seen his abs?? (none / 0) (#76)
    by observed on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 05:38:29 PM EST
    I'm sure the other side is just as good.
    He's a poster boy for something, I'm sure of that.

    There's a couple of draft John Mellencamp diaries (none / 0) (#49)
    by magster on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 01:55:43 PM EST
    on Kos.  Not gonna happen, but it would be fun...

    Diane Rehm Show panel sees House going Repub, (none / 0) (#56)
    by jawbone on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:15:19 PM EST
    with Bayh's declining to run putting the Senate in play for Repub takeover.

    From website:

    10:00What Americans Think of Congress
    Americans are increasingly dissatisfied with how their government works - or doesn't. With millions unemployed, soaring deficits and concerns about health-care, voters want Congress to act. The future of bipartisanship in a hyper-partisan age.

    Prof. James Thurber, professor and director of the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies at American University

    Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press

    Chris Cillizza, is the author of "The Fix" on washingtonpost.com

    Charlie Cook, editor and publisher of the "Cook Political Report"

    Tom Davis, Tom Davis served in Congress from 1995-2008, and was chairman of the Republicans' congressional campaign committee from 1998-2002.

    Tom Udall, is the junior senator from New Mexico. He was elected in 2008. Previously he served as a U.S. Representative and as New Mexico's State Attorney General.

    The prof and Kohut emphasized the tremendous difference in intensity and enthusiasm between the R's polled (very high, very intense) and D's (very pessimistic, very depressed, no enthusiasm).

    Transcripts only through purchase; audio available at the link.

    The Carter situation redux (none / 0) (#81)
    by christinep on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:42:55 PM EST
    My husband and sister worked for Carter, as paid campaign staff, when he ran in 1976. (I was precluded by the then-version of the Hatch Act.) Turns out that we became disillusioned with everything by the time he sought reelection in 1980. Yoiks--we were young then and a bit impatient. Next came 12 years of Republican reign with Reagan and Bush I.  Now, we are one-year into a Democratic presidency again; but, this time I am not depressed/disillusioned because I have to believe it can and will change for the better in the coming year. To not do that is to do exactly what we as Democrats have a history of doing--sort of eating our own.  We all need to figure out a way of marshalling our political resources as a united party and stop the squabbling or practice saying Mr President Huckabee or Mr President Romney or Ms President Palin. And, there will be a difference. Believe anyone who has been through the troughs of political disappointment...there will be a large, personal, negative difference after the bravado is over.

    Your history precedes you (none / 0) (#82)
    by BTAL on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 06:49:38 PM EST
    Or as Yogi Berra says "Deja vu all over again".

    And, more of "my history" (none / 0) (#83)
    by christinep on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 07:16:39 PM EST
    and, for that matter, all of our history. 1968. The first year that I was eligible to vote. My husband & I voted in Indiana. For Birch Bayh as Senator; and--here is a split--me for Humphrey and he for Mickey Mouse (a write-in.) Yes, there are the jokes. But, guess what? Other than that we must be old as dirt, Nixon won a narrow, narrow victory in the face of all the Democratic disillusionment. And--during Vietnam--we were disillusioned. (My husband & I actually demonstrated during the Chicago convention.) And, somewhat jokingly, I "accuse" him of casting the vote that soon gave us Justice Rehnquist and that Supreme Court reign that followed. I'm being really mouthy and disclosive today because those memories are painful...and, speak of the potential deja vu.

    Cook's take (none / 0) (#61)
    by jbindc on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:25:29 PM EST

    Not a pretty picture.

    On a related note (none / 0) (#65)
    by BTAL on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 02:50:57 PM EST
    Rumor has it that Mikulski will be the next to announce she is retiring.  

    He'd better have one hell (none / 0) (#68)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 03:24:36 PM EST
    of a scandal he's running from or he can KMA doing this at this time.  What about vulnerable Republican seats?  I know it will be very hard to hold this seat now but how are the vulnerable Republican Senate seats looking?

    This might give you an idea (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by BTAL on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 04:03:26 PM EST
    Sux (none / 0) (#84)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 08:16:56 PM EST
    Thanks for the link

    He pulled Palin (none / 0) (#77)
    by samtaylor2 on Mon Feb 15, 2010 at 05:47:00 PM EST
    He gets to work for fox news of CNN, or NBC, and then potentially run in 2012 or 2016.  In my mind he was part of problem, and doesn't have the strength of mind or guts to help fix it.