Posts Tagged With: Election 2008

Money & the 2008 Election

NY Times has an interesting, if improbable, look at how Michael Bloomberg could focus all of his energy at one or two large states, and use these as bargaining chips if neither the Democrats or Republicans manage to get a majority in the Electoral College. Of course, if one of them does manage to get a majority, or if Mr Bloomberg doesn't decide to run for president, this whole strategy is for naught. I think a better strategy would be to offer every Electoral College voter 2 million dollars to vote for Bloomberg instead of their candidate. To get a majority, Bloomberg would need 270 voters to change their vote, for a total cost of $540 million, comparable to the cost of an election campaign. Of course, this could fail too. All this strategizing says to me that the Electoral College is an idea that has long outlived its usefulness. Every election year, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Missouri get twice as much attention as California, a state with the world's 7th largest economy and one sixth of the country's population. There is no Electoral College equivalent at any other level of government in the US; it would be silly if governor's races were decided by how many counties a candidate won. It's about time we switched to popular voting for the president, like every other industrialized country.

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Want to know more about gerrymandering?

Play the Redistricting Game. Some smart alecks at USC put this game together. You are the state's mapmaker, and your party controls the state Legislature. You have to guarantee narrow partisan margins for all the districts in the state (and keep them all the same size), while getting approval from the Governor and surviving court challenges. The main point of the game is to show how much of an influence the mapmaker has in deciding elections. I suggest you try your hand.

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Huh?

According to a new Zogby poll, 45% of Americans fear high levels of corruption if Hillary Clinton returns to office. What? I'm sorry, maybe I didn't hear correctly? As opposed to the low levels of corruption we are enjoying now? The tripling of paid lobbyists on K Street? The ethics 'reform' that means politicians are still enjoying lunches and paid vacations from those lobbyists? A representative soliciting a teen page for sex? No-bid contracts offered to the vice president's old company? Leaking the name of a CIA operative to exact revenge on her truth-telling husband? Congressional votes in exchange for pork/lobby money? Who is being kidded? Bill Clinton's presidency was a little before my time. But getting blown by a White House intern does not hurt the country, or its finances, or take money from its tax payers. I cannot believe the Clintons had scandals to match these. I mean maybe there will be corruption under Hillary Clinton but can it possibly top the amount now? Will there be less corruption under McCain or Obama or Edwards?

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Election 2008

Shares of Hillary Clinton (HC) were up $3 in after-hours trading after she announced first-quarter revenues of $28 million, a new record in campaign fundraising. Her earnings brought a large positive shock to the market, and exceeded analysts' expectations. A big rival, John Edwards (EDW), also announced strong first-quarter revenues, bringing in $14 million. "I'm pleased with our earnings report," said a top Edwards campaign official. Barack Obama (BO) is not expected to announce revenues until later this week.

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The Right Question To Ask About Iraq Is…

I can imagine President Bush at home thirty years from now wishing he'd started the war later in his presidency. Imagine, living with five years of decreasing public opinion polls! It would take five years before someone else could shoulder responsibility for his beast. In the history of the United States though I doubt that any presidents have started expensive foreign wars late in their presidency.

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Capping the 2008 Presidential Election

I'm selling Rudy Giuliani. No way he stays the frontrunner for Republicans through the whole election. As a matter of fact, I'm selling everyone this week but Dennis Kucinich, who deserves points for having absolutely no chance and sticking around anyway. It's March 2007; the election is November 2008. I am a freshman now and will be a junior by the time the election takes place. In the meantime I expect lots of gaffes, empty promises, and soul-selling. The winner will be battered to pieces by the end of this process. As we scrutinize our candidates more closely than we ever have, we will realize that they are not likeable. Or perfect. I will put early bets on Barack Obama mainly because he is the best looking candidate in the field. Mitt Romney would be close except that he's a Mormon. In Massachusetts this can be overlooked but not in the country. Especially as he comes under national scrutiny. I wish we could divide up the presidential position into two positions: an economic leader and a social leader. That way voters could combine fiscal conservativism with social progressivism. I only have one vote to say yes or no to all of a candidate's views. I especially dislike the idea of voting for America's leader based on how he feels about abortion. Abortion and gay marriage are important issues but I don't know how suited they are for address by the President.

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Election 2008

Are any of the presidential candidates committed to reducing the size of government? We have Democrats, who enjoy increasing the size of government, and we have Republicans, who enjoy talking about limited government and "starve-the-beast," but who have presided over bigger budget increases than Bill Clinton. All we need are more promises to make government bigger.

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