Archive for the ‘Pennsylvania’ Category

Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) to Switch to Democratic Party

April 28, 2009

This is breaking news that just came in – Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) is expected to announce that he will run in the Democratic primary in 2010.  Specter had expected to face a tough primary if he stayed in the Republican Party.

This could be a good move for him, but if the Republicans get a strong candidate out, he’ll probably lose that seat.  I’ll post again as soon as Specter releases a statement or has a press conference.  Right now, I don’t have many details, but it appears as if he will stay in the Republican caucus until 2010.

Done Reporting,

Ranting Republican
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D.C. Voting Rights Act is Clearly Unconstitutional

March 4, 2009

Last Thursday, the Senate passed the District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2009, which gives the District of Columbia a voting member in the House of Representatives and eliminates the position of D.C. Delegate, who represents the District now.  Currently, that delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton, can only vote when her vote does not affect the outcome; however, she is allowed to introduce bills, and this bill was introduced by Norton.  The bill would also give an additional seat to Utah, so that the partisan makeup of the House stayed the same.

S. 160 (formal title: “A bill to provide the District of Columbia a voting seat and the State of Utah an additional seat in the House of Representatives”) was introduced by Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT).  The bill passed the Senate in by a vote of 61-37, falling mostly along party lines; however, five Republicans voted for it (Susan Collins [R-ME], Orrin Hatch [R-UT], Dick Lugar [R-IN], Olympia Snowe [R-ME], and Arlen Specter [R-PA]), and two Democrats voted against it (Max Baucus [D-MT] and Robert Byrd [D-WV]).

The bill that passed the Senate had been amended by Senator John Ensign (R-NV).  His amendment (S.AMDT. 575) restored several gun rights to the District by repealing the ban on semiautomatic weapons, the registration requirement, the ban on handgun ammunition, and several other laws.  That amendment passed 62-36.

Personally, I am ashamed of the Senate for passing this bill (although I’m glad that gun rights have been restored to the District).  Apparently 61 of our Senators need to go back to eighth grade civics class!

This act is clearly unconstitutional!  Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution says, “The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States.”  Washington, D.C. is not a state-it’s just that simple.

Furthermore, Norton never should have been allowed to introduce this bill.  She is unconstitutionally in the House of Representatives.  Section 2 of Article I also says, “No Person shall be a Representative who shall not … be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.”  Norton is not an inhabitant of a STATE, and thus should not be able to introduce legislation in the House!

I am all for the representation of D.C. in Congress; however, this bill is not the way to do that.  If D.C. really was Constitutionally allowed to have a representative, they wouldn’t need a law to get their representation – all they’d need to do is file a court case.  Furthermore, if they deserve representation, why don’t they deserved 2 Senators as well?

If the House passes this bill and President Obama signs it, this bill would probably be the most blatantly unconstitutional law ever written.  At least when President Bush violated the Constitution, he did so in ways that were debatable as to whether or not he actually violated the Constitution, but this bill takes Article I, Section 1 and says, “That’s not an important part of the Constitution.”  Find me any time that President Bush DIRECTLY violated the Constitution – he  didn’t.  The violations of the 4th Amendment were debatable.  I personally think that he violated the 4th Amendment, but there are ways that you could argue that he did not; however, with this bill, nobody with an ounce of sanity can argue that this is Constitutional!

Does anybody else find it ironic that the same Senators who complained about President Bush’s debatably unconstitutional laws just voted in favor of a law that directly and clearly goes against the very wording of the Constitution?  Come on!

Proponents of the bill claim that the “District Clause” (Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution) allows for the Congress to give D.C. a Representative.  The text of that clause reads, “[The Congress shall have Power] To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District … as may … become the Seat of the Government of the United States.”

“Exclusive Legislation” only gives Congress the right to govern the District, not magically ignore Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution when it comes to the District.

This bill is blatantly unconstitutional, and those who voted for it and criticized the Bush administration ought to be ashamed of themselves.  Fortunately the Supreme Court still respects the Constitution, and I am willing to bet that they will declare this unconstitutional in a heartbeat – in fact, I really don’t see any of the 9 Justices siding with the Senate.  If they do, they are shaming the Constitution and the office of Justice of the Supreme Court!

Even my liberal roommate agrees – this bill is CLEARLY unconstitutional!

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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11-Year-Old Shoots Dad’s Pregnant Fiancee; Should Be Charged As An Adult

February 24, 2009

3_21_022109_brown_350Alright, so I just heard about this story and figured I’d give  my input.  This story comes out of Wampum, Pennsylvania: 11-year-old Jordan Anthony Brown (pictured on the left; photo courtesy of the Lawrence County Prison) shot and killed his dad’s pregnant fiancee at point blank range, and is now being charged as an adult.  Brown allegedly shot the woman with his 20-gauge shotgun in the back of the head.  He had wrapped the shotgun in a sheet to muffle the sound.

But apparently, his lawyer isn’t happy with this and wants him to be tried in juvenile court.  Brown is currently being held in the Lawrence County Prison in Pennsylvania.

On Saturday, Lawrence County District Attorney John Bongivengo charged Brown, as an adult, in the murder of 26-year-old Kenzie Marie Houk. Houk was 6 months pregnant.  Bongivengo said that he has to be charged as an adult because Pennsylvania law doesn’t allow for criminal homicide charges to be filed  against Brown in juvenile court.

Brown originally lied to police about seeing a suspicious vehicle on the property, but later, police realized that he was lying after finding multiple inconsistencies in his story.  The victims 7-year-old daughter ultimately implicated Brown in the murder.  Bongivengo told reporters, “She didn’t actually eyewitness the shooting.  She saw him with what she believed to be a shotgun and heard a loud bang.  [The gun was found in the] location we believe to be in the defendant’s bedroom.”

Jack Houk, the victim’s father, told reporters, “An 11-year-old kid — what would give him the motive to shoot someone?  Maybe he was just jealous of my daughter and the baby and thought he would be overpowered.”

Brown’s attorney, David Elisco met with Brown, after which he told reporters, “I don’t think he knows what’s going on.  I walked out of there thinking he was innocent.  I believe Jordan did not do this and I’m looking forward to seeing the physical evidence to see if it matches with what I think happened.”  Elisco also met with Christopher Brown, the boy’s father.  He characterized Christopher as being “in a state of actual shock and disbelief.”  When asked if the boy disliked Houk, Elisco answered, “This is a tragic, extremely tragic situation, and it’s way too early to have any substantive comment.”

Apparently jealousy was the motive.  According to the victim’s brother-in-law, Jason Kraner, “He [Jordan Brown] actually told my son that he wanted to do that to her.  There was an issue with jealousy.”  Elisco responded to that claim, saying, “I think it’s all bull shit–there’s no animosity.”

Elisco wants Brown moved out of the county jail.  He told reporters, “I don’t think anybody wants him there. … I want him to be occupied and busy and back, essentially, in school. … I wouldn’t say he’s in good spirits.  He’s confused.  He looks and acts like a typical 11-year-old.”

He acts like a typical boy?  Are you crazy?  He shot a woman at point blank range!

Lawrence County Warden Charles Adamo also wants Brown moved out of his prison.  He says that his facility just can’t accommodate an 11-year-old boy.  Apparently they have to keep him ultra-isolated from any adult inmates, so he can’t even have visitors, since it’d mean that he’d have to be around other adults.  It’s also difficult to coordinate showers, since he has to shower alone, meaning that a whole cell block of 63 inmates must be locked down.  According to Elisco, they don’t even have clothes that fit him: “They put a shirt on him; he’s swimming in it, and his pants are cuffed up about 10 times.”  I find that a little hard to believe – they don’t have small clothes at all?  What happens if they arrest a dwarf or midget?  I feel like they must have clothes somewhere that would fit him.

Personally, I don’t care if he’s in an adult prison or not, as long as he is CHARGED as an adult.  This kid knew what he was dong.  It was premeditated (the sheet wrapped around the gun).  We have a girl who saw everything but the actual shooting (anybody can put 2 and 2 together.  Boy with shotgun + big bang + dead woman = boy killed the woman).

This freak of a kid needs to be charged with double homicide and needs to spend the rest of his life in jail.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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Breaking: Senate Passes Revised Economic Stimulus Plan: 60-38

February 13, 2009

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) just got back  from Ohio, where he was attending his mother’s memorial services, and has casted an “Aye” vote for the economic stimulus package.  That was the 60th Aye vote needed, since Ted Kennedy (D-MA) was not voting.  The 3 Republicans who sided with the Democrats before, Arlen Specter (R-PA), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and Susan Collins (R-ME) voted with the Democrats.

“Mr. Brown.  Mr. Brown, Aye.”  Those were the words that just came from the Dick Durbin (D-IL) who was presiding over the Senate.  The Senate has just agreed to the bill as it was revised by the conference committee.

This is such a shame, and I’m still angry that they actually made Senator Brown come back to vote.  They couldn’t get Ted Kennedy to come back?  Sure he’s sick, but he wasn’t at MEMORIAL SERVICES for his MOTHER!

Additionally, this bill is a TERRIBLE BILL!  I’m not happy right now.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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House of Representatives Approves Revised Stimulus Bill: 246-183

February 13, 2009

A little over an hour ago, the House of Representatives approved the revised economic stimulus package (that’s the package where the joint conference hammered out the details between the Senate and House bill differences).  246 Democrats voted for the bill; all 183 Republicans voted NAY, with 7 Democrats joining them.  1 Democrat also voted present, and 1 Democrat and 2 Republicans were not voting.

The bill was divided into 2 parts and revised in the conference committee, and those 2 parts can be found here:

http://www.house.gov/billtext/hr1_legtext_cr.pdf

http://www.house.gov/billtext/hr1_legtext_crb.pdf

I’ll try to put a link up to the bill when it’s actually retyped up somewhere.

How many Representatives even read the bill?!  I don’t know about you, but I can’t read 900+ pages in a day or 2.  Most of the Representatives (other than those in the conference committee) haven’t had a chance to read this.  Even IF you support the bill (which I don’t), please READ the WHOLE bill (or have your staff read it and give you a detailed summary), and then make the decision.  Personally, I’ve seen enough of the bill to know that I could never vote for it.  There’s too much wasteful spending in it.  It doesn’t matter how much “good is in it” – there’s too much bad!

I think this was an absolutely terrible bill, and I strongly commend the 7 Democrats who voted for it, and I am very glad that no Republicans supported this piece of disastrous legislation.  It’s a shame that we had 3 party traitors in a group of 41, while a whole group of 178 representatives could easily say no to this bill.

Hopefully those 3 party traitors (Arlen Specter [PA], Olympia Snowe [ME], and Susan Collins [ME]) will vote against this piece of crap when it comes to a vote in the Senate!  If not, I say that we reomove Collins, Specter, and Snowe when they’re up for reelection.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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House of Representatives Debates and Votes to Congratulate the Pittsburgh Steelers for Their Superbowl Win

February 12, 2009

Today, the House of Representatives (at least for the first half of the day) considered and discussed 4 suspension bills (bills passed under suspension of the rules), where debate is limited to 40 minutes.  Today, they agreed to 4 resolutions, the first of which was to congratulate the Pittsburgh Steelers on their 6th Super Bowl win (officially House Resolution 110: Congratulating the National Football League champion Pittsburgh Steelers for winning Super Bowl XLIII and becoming the most successful franchise in NFL history with their record 6th Super Bowl title, sponsored by Representative Michael Doyle [D-PA14-Pittsburgh]).  For those of you who would like to see it, here’s the C-SPAN video of that debate:

more about “House of Representatives Debates and …“, posted with vodpod

And if you care, here’s the text of the resolution:

HRES 110 IH

111th CONGRESS 

1st Session

H. RES. 110

Congratulating the National Football League champion Pittsburgh Steelers for winning Super Bowl XLIII and becoming the most successful franchise in NFL history with their record 6th Super Bowl title.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

February 3, 2009

Mr. DOYLE (for himself, Mr. ROONEY, and Mr. TIM MURPHY of Pennsylvania) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform 


RESOLUTION

Congratulating the National Football League champion Pittsburgh Steelers for winning Super Bowl XLIII and becoming the most successful franchise in NFL history with their record 6th Super Bowl title. 

Whereas the Pittsburgh Steelers won Super Bowl XLIII by defeating the Arizona Cardinals 27 to 23 in Tampa, Florida, on February 1, 2009, winning their second Super Bowl championship in 4 years;

Whereas with this victory the Pittsburgh Steelers franchise has set a new National Football League standard for most Super Bowl victories with their record 6th Super Bowl championship;

Whereas the Pittsburgh Steelers went 15-4 against the hardest-ranked 2008-2009 schedule in the NFL and defeated the San Diego Chargers, Baltimore Ravens, and Arizona Cardinals during their record-setting post season run;

Whereas linebacker James Harrison returned a goal line interception 100 yards for the longest play in Super Bowl history;

Whereas quarterback Ben Roethlisberger went 21-30 for 256 yards and led the team down the field for the 19th and most important 4th quarter comeback of his career;

Whereas wide receiver Santonio Holmes won the Super Bowl MVP award with a 9-catch, 131-yard performance, including the game-winning touchdown in the corner of the endzone with 35 seconds left in the game;

Whereas the Pittsburgh Steelers new `Steel Curtain’ defense, including stars James Harrison, Ryan Clark, Troy Polamalu, James Farrior, Ike Taylor, Larry Foote, Casey Hampton, LaMarr Woodley, Brett Keisel, Deshea Townsend, and Aaron Smith were ranked first in the NFL in overall team defense for the 2008-2009 season;

Whereas the Pittsburgh Steelers defense during the 2008-2009 season allowed the least points scored, lowest average passing yards per game, and the least overall yards per game in the entire NFL;

Whereas head coach Mike Tomlin is the youngest coach to win a Super Bowl championship and has continued in the legendary tradition of head coaches Chuck Noll and Bill Cowher by bringing a Super Bowl championship to Pittsburgh;

Whereas linebacker James Harrison was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year for the 2008-2009 season;

Whereas team owner Dan Rooney and team President Art Rooney II, the son and grandson, respectively, of Pittsburgh Steelers founder Art Rooney, have remarkable loyalty to Steelers fans and the City of Pittsburgh, and have assembled an exceptional team of players, coaches, and staff that made achieving a championship possible;

Whereas the Pittsburgh Steelers fan base, known as `Steeler Nation’, was ranked in August 2008 by ESPN.com as the best in the NFL, citing their current streak of 299 consecutive sold out games going back to the 1972 season; and

Whereas, for 76 years, the people of the City of Pittsburgh have seen themselves in the grit, tenacity, and success of the Pittsburgh Steelers franchise, and they proudly join the team in celebrating their NFL record 6th Super Bowl championship: Now therefore, be it

    Resolved, That the House of Representatives congratulates the National Football League Champion Pittsburgh Steelers for winning Super Bowl XLIII and setting a new championship standard for the entire NFL.

Now, I have no problem with this resolution; what I do have a problem with is the length that they actually discussed it for.  It got the most discussion of all of the resolutions considered by the House during the rules suspension during this part of the day (there was some stuff done earlier, and I know that they’re in session now).  Honestly, I think it was a waste of time to discuss it at such lengths.

I would commend Representative Steven Kirk (R-IL-10) for actually standing up and saying that we should be discussing other things, specifically the economic stimulus package.  But he wasn’t the only one.  Earier in the day the House had to actually debate whether or not they were going to suspend the rules, and that got pretty heated.  For that debate, watch the following video, if you’d like (but it is pretty long) (also, the video was supposed to start at 29 minutes, but for some reason the markers were lost when I embeded this video, so start it at 29 minutes, otherwise it’s stuff before what I was talking about):

more about “House of Representatives Debates and …“, posted with vodpod

Alright, that resolution was ultimately passed (248-174 [2 Democrats crossing party lines to vote NAY]).  Personally, I would’ve voted against that resolution, but since it passed, I would’ve voted in favor of all of the 4 suspension bills.

That being said, I again emphasize how HUGE of a waste of a time it was to debate the Steelers resolution.

Maybe I’m a fun killer (we all know that I am Mr. Grinch and hate Santa), and I realize that Congress should be allowed to have fun and do some stuff like this, but to debate it for that long while we’re still trying to iron out the economic stimulus frivoulous package is not the right thing to do.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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A Michigander’s Perspective: The Goverment Should Not Bail Out the Auto Industry

November 13, 2008

As rumors fly that a $25 billion bailout of the auto industry may actually come to a vote in the Congress, I figured that I, a citizen of Metro Detroit and Michigan should weigh in.

First, the facts:

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has called for “emergency and limited financial assistance” for General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler where legislation would be passed that would make the automakers eligible for financial support under the $700 billion bailout bill that was passed in October.

This comes after a $25-billion loan program bill specifically for automakers that was passed in September.  The problem with that program was intended to loan money to the Big 3 only to help refit plants across the country in order to assist automakers in making tougher fuel economy standards.  Now the automakers are saying that they need loans just to keep overall operations continuing.

Republicans in Congress are expected to push for the restrictions on the $25 billion to be dropped, before any other optionss are considered.  Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has already started advocating for this plan; however, it is expected that Democrats will oppose dropping any of the restrictions on the $25 billion.

Now, what is my opinion?

Well, I have a lot to gain if the auto industry bounces back.  I have 2,500 shares of Delphi, an auto parts supplier for General Motors.  If it goes back up to $10 a share, I’ll have made a little under around $24,650 on my investment.

Plus, it’ll bring jobs back to Michigan if the automakers do bounce back.  And that’ll help the economy of my state, which is in a pretty sad condition right now.

But, I still oppose the bailout.

First, I’m tired of Michiganders saying, “I support the bailout because it’ll bring jobs back to Michigan.”  Well, my fellow Michiganders, when it’s YOUR tax dollars being spent outside of the state, would you support a bailout?

If the technology sector all of a sudden began failing, would you support a bailout of Silicon Valley companies such as Google, Adobe, Atari, Microsoft, Sony, Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, etc…?  I wouldn’t!  And as Governor Granholm is advocating for this bailout, mayors of major cities all over the nation are asking for their piece of the bailout?  And did I not predict that as we bail out more companies, more people would ask for their piece of the bailout pie?

This attitude is the same attitude as many people have with earmarks.  Ask most voters and they’ll tell you that they oppose earmarks, but then they’ll go and vote for the Representative “who brought so much money back to the district” through earmarks.  Examples of this are my representative, Carolyn Kilpatrick (D-MI13), who brags about the earmarked money she’s brought to the Detroit area, and more famously, Representative John Murtha (D-PA12) and Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK).

Second, the fact that the United Auto Worker’s Union (UAW) is backing this bailout scares me.  A LARGE PORTION OF THIS PROBLEM IS THE UAW’s FAULT!  The UAW bullied GM, Delphi, and Chrysler into giving workers benefits and wages that the companies couldn’t afford.  How?  By threatening to strike when the companies were suffering.  (I don’t remember the UAW ever threatening Ford with a strike in recent years, but I could be wrong).  Let me give the UAW a little lesson in business management: When your company is losing money, the LAST thing you want to do is cost your company more money by not showing up to work and going on strike.  If the government is going to step in and do anything about the auto industry crisis, it should be to reduce the choke-hold that the UAW has had on auto companies.  Instead of complaining about getting your benefits or wages cut, be thankful that you have JOBS.  Because when you go on strike, that means products aren’t being made, which means that less products will be sold, which means that less money comes in to the company, which means that either A) you lose your job or B) you lose wages/benefits.  Striking during a time of CRISIS only furthers the problem, and the fact that the UAW leadership (and at least 51% of the membership) refuses to acknowledge this (or are just too stupid to realize it), really angers me.  Obviously you can’t see me right now, but I’m actually getting angry just talking about the sheer stupidity of the UAW (and a lot of unions, such as the unions that struck during Northwest Airline’s financial problems and eventual bankruptcy).

And that leads me to my next point: Bankruptcy court.  We have them for a reason folks.  Let the automakers use them.  We shouldn’t be looking at bailouts at all until the companies file for Chapter 11 (and even after that, I will still be opposed to bailouts).

Lastly: I don’t think that the bailouts will work with the auto industry.  Some have cited (as they did for the bailout bill passed in October) that the government successfully bailed out Chrysler in the 1970s by guaranteeing a $1.5 billion loan.  The problem with equating the 2 situations is that in the 1970s, we weren’t establishing a pattern of bailing out company after company who came to the government looking for help.  In addition, that was a bailout of one company, not the auto industry.  Honestly, if one of the Big 3 fail, that will probably be enough to give the other 2 enough business to recover.  It’s not ideal, or anywhere CLOSE to ideal (heck, I have friends and family members who work in all 3 companies), but it’s better than this general industry bailout plan.  I think that an industry bailout will help the Big 3 for a while, but that won’t be enough for them to recover, so 1 or 2 of them may fail (I honestly think GM would be the first to go, and I don’t see Ford going under).

It’s not a good situation, but a bailout will only make it worse.  Michiganders and Detroiters need to stop being selfish and start thinking about the good of the country as a whole.

Done Ranting,

Ranting Republican
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4 Days to Go: My Presidential Election Prediction: Obama 291, McCain 247

October 31, 2008

Alright, so last Tuesday, I did a prediction for the Presidential election, predicting an Obama with victory of 286-252, and said I’d update it this Tuesday.  Well, I got a little busy, but here’s my updated prediction.  I’ve also done a prediction for the Senate and Gubernatorial elections.

The maps are provided courtesy of Dave Leip’s U.S. Election Atlas (and you can find the most updated version of my prediction on that website here).  The colors on this website are switched from the normal colors (and I’m too lazy to switch them back to the normal colors – but back in the 1980s, these colors were the colors that the  media used). 

Alright, on to the predictions…

Obama – 291
McCain – 247

So, the states where you might disagree with my position:

  • Ohio: As the current trand of the past week keeps up, it’ll come out right about tied.  I think McCain’s last minute blitz campaigning will help him pull out just BARELY on top.
  • Misssouri, McCain has been leading recently, baring a few polls.
  • North Carolina: I was unsure last week, and I’m still unsure this week.  I really haven’t changed my opinion on this.  I’ll make a hopefully more final decision when I do my final prediction on Monday.  As of now, I think it’ll just barely go to McCain.
  • Florida: Despite Obama’s recent lead in the polls, I think McCain will come back and win here, but if Obama continues to increase his lead, I’ll switch it over to him.

Now, the map indicating the confidence that I have that my prediction is right:

Obama – 291
McCain – 185
Tossup – 62

Now, how has this map changed since my last map? Here’s a chart of the changes:

State

Previous

Current

Reasoning

AK

R60S

R50S

Doesn’t look like McCain will reach 60%.

AZ

R60S

R50S

Doesn’t look like McCain will reach 60%

CA

D50S

D60S

Looks like Obama will manage to reach 60% here.

DE

D50S

D60S

Looks like Obama will manage to reach 60% here.

IN

R50S

D40L

More and more polls are coming out showing that Indiana is going to go to Obama.  I’m not exactly 100% sure yet, but it’s looking like it’ll be decently hard for McCain to come back and be able to win here.

NV

R40T

D50L

Again, like Indiana, the polls just don’t look like McCain will win here.  Originally, I was predicting a declaration of Obama’s victory early in the night and thought that less Obama supporters in Nevada would show up, but Obama has now garnered enough support here in Nevada, that an early victory declaration won’t give McCain a victory in Nevada.

PA

D50S

D50L

Originally, this looked really strong for Obama, but then all 4 candidates (President and VP) headed to Pennsylvania to campaign, which made me suspicious as to Obama’s strength there.  Combined with a blitz of campaigning here on McCain’s part plus Representative John Murtha’s comments about West Pennsylvania, I’m switching this over to the “Lean” category, but I’m still confident that Obama will win.

TN

R60S

R50S

Doesn’t look like McCain will reach 60%.

ME CD1

D50S

D60S

Based on recent polls that broke down demographic areas of the state, it looks like Obama will reach 60% here, but I don’t think he will in District 2 or on a statewide level.

So, at this point, I think it’ll take a small miracle for McCain to win.  All of the states that are toss-ups, I have going to McCain, so, in theory, if the toss-up states go to Obama, Obama would win 353-185.

I’ll do a final prediction on Monday, so check back for my final prediction.

Done Predicting,

Ranting Republican
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Holy Crap! This Election Could Get Weird: An Electoral College Tie? Acting President Pelosi?

September 25, 2008

So, I’ve been looking through polls lately, and the way it stands now, if Obama holds all the states he currently has, and McCain picks up all the tossup states, we’d have an Electoral College tie (assuming that all the electors keep their promise to vote for their party).

Let’s look at the map (courtesy of my favorite election website, the U.S. Election Atlas) of the current polls (note, that first link may be different than the image below.  That link goes to the updated version of the polls.  The image below is an image that I created inputting the different numbers):

Electoral Votes:
Obama: 269
McCain: 212
Tossup: 57

Now, these are the averages of the last 3 polls.  I have a couple disagreements with the polls:

  • Pennsylvania is not slight Obama.  I think it should be Lean Dem.
  • Michigan is not Lean Dem.  It should be slight Dem.  There was a recent poll that had Obama way more ahead than he really is, and I think it’s skewing the results.
  • Florida isn’t Slight Rep.  I think it’s Lean Rep.
  • West Virginia isn’t Slight Rep.  It should also be Lean Rep in my opinion.
  • I don’t think Minnesota is Slight Dem.  I think it should probably be Lean Dem.
  • Montana should be Strong Rep not Lean Rep, but there were a couple polls throwing that off.
  • Nevada should probably be Slight McCain in all honesty, but I’ll talk about that later.

Other than that, I agree with this map.  So, let’s take a look at the tossup states:

  • Nevada: Although it’s close, most recent polls have shown McCain with a slight lead here.  I wouldn’t be surprised if that switches over to slight McCain in the next 3 days (whenever a poll comes out).  It’s really only a tossup because of an ARG (American Research Group) poll, and they’re a pretty crappy polling firm.  My call: McCain +5.  That puts him at 217.
  • North Carolina: Freakishly close lately, and it’s a state that we wouldn’t expect to be close.  However, I think this’ll trend back toward McCain as we get closer to Election day.  My call: McCain +15.  That puts him at 232.
  • Virginia: Similar to Nevada, most polls have shown McCain with a lead here.  I think we simply have some outliers, and as more polls come out, we’ll see that swing back to Slight McCain.  My call: McCain +13.  That puts McCain at 245.
  • New Hampshire: Most polls have had Obama winning, but recently it’s been trending toward McCain, and then McCain took the lead (granted one of those was an ARG poll, so we can ignore one of the three that had McCain winning).  This may be more of a gut feeling than actual math, but I think New Hampshire will go for McCain.  My call: McCain +4.  That gives him 249.
  • Ohio: Now, here’s the exciting one.  This has been by far the closest state in this election.  Polls have had Obama and McCain ahead of each other, as well as simply tied.  Trying to call this right now is really probably a shot in the dark, but because McCain has an ever so slight lead here, I’m going to make my call: McCain +20.  That would give McCain 269.  And the two are now tied.

I think we need to talk a little more about one last state: Michigan, my home state.  Although it’s not this way on the map, I said that I think Michigan is the only Slight Obama state.  I think it’s the only current Obama state that could be in play.  With a rough economy, a lot could happen, and the economy has been effecting Michigan the worst.  If Michigan were to go for McCain, McCain could then afford to lose either North Carolina, Nevada, New Hampshire, Virginia, or Nevada and New Hampshire.  If he won Michigan, but lost Virginia and New Hampshire (also a very good possibility), we would once AGAIN have a tie.

So, what’s my honest prediction?  I’m glad you asked.  I’ll show you (since this’ll get outdated, I’m sure, here’s a link to my prediction page, which will have my latest prediction on it):

Percentages:

Electoral Votes:
Obama: 269
McCain: 269

 

Confidence:

Electoral Votes:
Obama: 252
McCain: 227
Tossup: 59

 

So, what would happen if my prediction comes true?

  1. Assuming that we don’t have any faithless electors (electors who don’t vote the way they’re supposed to), and I don’t think we will–any faithless elector is pretty much asking to be assassinated: The vote would go to the House of Representatives.  But they do things kinda funky when they vote.  They don’t vote individually, they vote by state delegation, so it’s winner take all, but the Representatives decide, not the voters.  Here’s a map of the current House:

    The Republicans hold 21 of those, the Democrats hold 27, and 2 are tied.  You need 26 to win (50 states, so 1 more than half).  Obama wins, right?  Well, hold on a minute.  There’s a couple of things we have to keep in mind:

    1. Alaska could easily be won by the Democrat this year.  That’d be one more for Obama.
    2. Arizona, a tied state, could easily go to the Republican side.  Even if it doesn’t, a Democrat may be swayed to vote for the “home state boy.”  I’m pretty confident that we can add Arizona to McCain’s pile.  McCain has 22.
    3. Indiana could easily go over to the Republicans.  For now, I’ll keep Indiana in Obama’s pile.
    4. So, we have Obama with 27, McCain with 22, and 1 tie.  I think Kansas would go for McCain, making it 27, 23.  Obama wins, right?  Again, slow down.
    5. 4 of Obama’s delegations are in the south.  I don’t see the Tennessee, North Carolina, or Mississippi delegations voting for an African American.  That makes it Obama 24, McCain 26.  McCain wins.  However, there are enough Democrats in Mississippi that there’s an EVER SO SLIGHT possibility that it’d go for Obama.  That leaves us at 25-25.
  2. If we get to 25-25, they’d keep voting.  If they never break the tie…
  3. While the House was voting on President, the Senate would have elected the Vice-President, and we’d have acting President Biden/Palin.  As it stands now, it’d probably be a tie.  You have 49 Democrats and 49 Republicans, plus Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT).  Sanders votes with the Democrats (he caucuses with them, so he would vote with them on this).  Lieberman, who caucuses with the Democrats votes for McCain.  I don’t doubt this, he’s endorsed him.  That gives us 50-50. 
  4. We then have acting President Nany Pelosi, since Speaker of the House is next in line.  Scary, I know.
  5. One litle note I forgot to put in here – the House has until March 4th to come up with a President.  If they don’t by then, then the acting President (whether that be the VP choice that the Senate made or the Speaker of the House) becomes the President.

Not only is this scenario extremely complicated, it’s historically unprecedented, but it actually has a decent chance of happening.  I shudder to think that Pelosi could be President, but this would be one heck of a story for the history books.

I’ll hopefully becoming out with Predictions once a week, as more polls and details come in, and as we get closer to the election.  I’ll also be covering the debate tomorrow night, live, so come back here for lots more election fun.

Done Hypothetically Situating,

Ranting Republican
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A September 11th Tribute: 7 Years, Never Forget

September 11, 2008

Today marks the 7 year anniversary of the September 11th Attacks.  Today is a day that affected many Americans, if not all Americans.  I can still, to this day tell you exactly where I was when I first heard about it, down to the very spot of the room.  And thinking back now brings tears to my eyes, thinking about how many people we lost that day, so many innocent and helpless people.

Again, I ask that all of those reading this hold a moment of silence sometime today – for me (and the rest of Central Michigan University) it will be 8:46 A.M.  But don’t just think about it during that minute.  I ask all of you reading this to pray for the families and friends of those who lost loved ones that day.  I ask all of you to pray for those who know people who are overseas fighting for our freedom.

And above all, I ask that we don’t turn today into a time for political gain.  To do so belittles the very lives of the people who died this day 7 years ago.

Remember, never forget; how could we…

Ranting Republican
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