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Category Archive for ‘AL-Gov’ at Campaign Diaries
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Archive for the 'AL-Gov' Category


Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

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Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

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Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

Reps. Bobby Bright and Jose Serrano will stay put

Serrano is out: Gillibrand’s path clears further

When Carolyn Maloney announced she would not challenge Kirsten Gillibrand, I pointed out that the only once-interested Democratic House member who had yet to rule out a run was Jose Serrano, a ten-term congressman who chairs an Appropriations Subcommittee - one of the most powerful positions one can hold in the House. Serrano had not made enough Senate noise for us to take the prospect that he’d leave his influential perch seriously, but it was tough to overlook the tough attacks he had launched on Gillibrand. In May, he for instance expressed the wish that she “now at least treat immigrants as human beings.”

Well, Gillibrand skeptics are now truly running out of options: In an interview with Liz Benjamin, Serrano ruled out running for Senate - though he also insisted he had not been won over by Gillibrand. “I was not pleased with the selection, and I’m not pleased with the style and the pressure on Maloney and everyone else to get them out,” he explained. “Here we are, and it looks like she’s going to get a clear ride. Very few times in politics do you get to be that lucky, and there’s no other way to say it but ‘lucky.’”

Serrano’s statement, while expected, will come as a disappointment to Bronx politicians looking to finally have a shot at at an open House seat. At only 65, Serrano can stick around in NY-16 for many more years - particularly since he’s on track to continue rising in the Appropriations Committee’s seniority.

Bright running for re-election: Still no challenger for Shelby

Rep. Bobby Bright’s spokesperson has ruled out that the freshman Alabama congressman seek statewide office in 2010. To be clear, this is in no way a surprise as no one expected Bright to run for the open Governor’s race or challenge Senator Richard Shelby. Yet, his name still popped up in conversations for a simple reason: After winning a shocking upset in a heavily conservative district, Bright is one of the GOP’s top targets and he is sure to face a tough re-election race - in 2010 and then again every two years. In short, it’s not like Bright would be leaving a safe job for a risky statewide run.

Yet, Bright knew what he was getting into when he decided to run as a Democrat in 2008, when both parties were trying to recruit him.) There are enough Blue Dog Democrats who have been entrenched in heavily conservative districts for decades that Bright must be thinking he could become as safe as Gene Taylor and Ike Skelton if he can just survive a few difficult cycles. Of course, that’s going to make Republicans even more desperate to unseat him next year.

Bright’s decision will also come as a huge relief at DCCC headquarters. Yet it should at least be an open question for liberal Democrats as to whether they want Bright to run for re-election if he does not become quickly entrenched. While Taylor doesn’t help Democrats win tough roll calls, at least he doesn’t force the DCCC to help him over more reliable representatives. If Bright forces Democrats to make that choice cycle after cycle, should Democrats be spending those millions every two years? Not only did Bright vote against both versions of the stimulus bill, but he was one of only two Democrats to oppose the reauthorization of SCHIP - a choice that suggests he really cannot be counted on any meaningful issue.

Bright’s decision leaves the DSCC as unlikely as ever to compete for Shelby’s Senate seat - one it used to hold since Shelby was first elected as a Democrat. The Governor’s race, however, is another story as Democrats already have two credible contenders seeking the nomination - Rep. Artur Davis and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks - so Bright’s decision is no setback for the DGA.

A new Republican contender in Texas

With Kay Bailey Hutchison all but confirming she will resign at some point in the fall, look for state Republicans to start drooling over the idea of seizing her Senate seat. While a number of contenders have already emerged, we can add a new one to the list: Rep. Joe Barton, who just signaled his interest. Barton represents the 6th district, which gave McCain 60% of the vote. Now, remember that, since this contest will be a special election, congressmen will not have to give up their House seat to run. Thus, Barton does not have anything to lose by running - and his candidacy would only result in an open House race if he goes on to win Hutchison’s Senate seat.


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Gubernatorial polls: AL and FL are up for grabs, NJ’s Christie is once again at 50%

Alabama is up for grabs

PPP released what I believe is the first poll of Alabama’s gubernatorial race, finding a wide open contest with 6 of 8 match-ups within 4%:

  • The early front-runner looks to be former state Senator Bradley Byrne, who is ahead of Rep. Artur Davis 39% to 35% and of Agriculture Commissioner Sparks 41% to 27%.
  • Davis leads three other Republicans, albeit narrowly: 37% to 35% against businessman Tim James, 41% to 38% against former Justice Roy Moore and 39% to 31% against Treasurer Kay Ivey.
  • Sparks leads Ivey 33% to 29% but he ties James at 32% and ties Moore 38% to 36%.

While these result make Sparks look bad, the main reason Davis is polling better than his Democratic rival is that far more African-American respondents are undecided in match-ups involving Sparks than Davis (43% to 23%). Sure, Davis might inspire higher African-American turnout but Sparks would be sure to receive far more support among black voters than he does in this poll once the campaign gets going so we shouldn’t read too much in this poll in terms of Democratic electability.

A similar phenomenon explains some of Ivey’s weakness - far more Republican than Democrats are undecided in match-ups that involve her - but not all of it: she also performs worse than other GOP candidates among independents and Democrats. As such, Ivey seems to be the one candidate that the poll suggest would face electability issues; the controversy over her handling of the state tuition program might have left in too weak a position.

If the poll is bad news for Ivey, it is very encouraging for two contenders whose electability is sometimes under question. As an African-American, Davis will have to overcome Alabama’s racial history and hold his own among white voters to be elected; this survey does not suggest he will have any problem doing so. As for Moore, his profile as a far-right crusader could give Democrats an opening; yet, this poll find that he would be very competitive and that he posts good numbers among independents and Democratic respondents.

In New Jersey, a second poll finds Christie at 50%

A week after Rasmussen had Chris Christie ahead 51% to 38% in New Jersey’s gubernatorial race, it’s Quinnipiac’s turn to find the Republican enjoying a post-primary bounce: Their new poll has Christie leading Governor Jon Corzine 50% to 40%, an improvement over the 7% lead he had last month.

Corzine keeps a hold on the Democratic vote (73% to 19%) but that is not enough to overcome his massive deficit among independents, who have decisively turned against the Governor (56% to 32%). Corzine’s approval rating has dropped to 36% with 56% disapproving; that’s significantly worse than May’s 38-53 rating.

Given how catastrophic it is for any incumbent to see his challenger at the 50% mark, it’s a testament to Jon Corzine’s weakness that polls finding just that already feel like routine! And it’s hard to see how he could possibly recover: With his approval rating is stuck under 40%, independents are simply not willing to consider re-electing their Governor.

Speaking of Northeastern Democratic Governors who are remarkably unpopular, a new poll of New York finds no improvement whatsoever for David Paterson. Only 21% have a favorable opinion of their Governor; while the survey did not test direct match-ups, it’s hard to see Paterson have any shot of winning a competitive race with such numbers. The poll also finds that 46% of New Yorkers favor same-sex marriage.

Florida: Quinnipiac confirms conventional wisdom

Quinnipiac released twin surveys testing the gubernatorial and senatorial races and confirmed what earlier polls - Mason Dixon and Strategic Vision - had found. In the gubernatorial race, Alex Sink leads 38% to 34% against Bill McCollum - a small lead that is nonetheless significant as I believe this is the first survey to find her with an edge of any kind.

As other surveys have found, Sink’s name recognition is far lower (66% have no opinion of of her, versus 46% who said that about him); that makes her small edge that much more impressive, especially given McCollum’s solid approval rating (51% to 16% compared to 39% to 17% for Sink). A key to the race will be how voters get to know of Sink: Will the Democrat be able to define herself first or will Republicans manage to do that for her?

In the Senate race, Quinnipiac did not test general election match-ups, but it did find Crist crushing Marco Rubio 54% to 23% in the Republican primary. Yes, Rubio and Kendrick Meek will have a chance to grow their numbers as they introduce themselves - 73% have no opinion of Rubio, 80% of Meek - but that won’t be enough to overcome Crist’s formidable approval rating: 62% approve of his performance, including 59% of Democrats and 68% of Republicans (not exactly what I’d call conservative discontent).


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Roy Moore’s return

Roy Moore announced yesterday that he will run for the Republican nomination in Alabama’s open gubernatorial race - a move that puts the state’s top executive position within the reach of a fundamentalist but that could also help Democrats seize the Governor’s mansion. In his candidacy statement, the state’s controversial former Chief Justice confirmed his ultra-conservative leanings by signaling that he would focus his campaign on an old Southern complaint - the “ever-growing federal intrusion.”

Earlier this decade, Moore gained national attention when he defied the order of a federal court to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments from the premises of state Supreme Court’s building. As a result, he was removed from his position as Chief Justice in 2003. What is less known is that Moore got to the Supreme Court because of his battle over another display of the Ten Commandments!

In 1995, the ACLU filed a suit against Moore, then a circuit judge, to force him to remove a display of the Ten Commandments from his courtroom. A court ordered him to take it down, but, in a preview of the later stand-off, Moore refused to do so. Not only did Congress (led by Senator Jeff Sessions) pass a non-binding resolution supporting Moore but Governor Fob James Jr. warned he would send the National Guard to protect Moore’s Ten Commandments against any attempt to remove them!

Moore rode the ensuing wave of publicity into the Supreme Court by winning an election in 2000. Facing a crowded Republican field and then an experienced Democratic judge, he ran a religiously-focused campaign. From an AP article written in May 2000:

Whether meeting with Republican groups, speaking in a church pulpit or talking in an interview in his office, Moore argues that American law is based upon nature’s laws, “and nature is God.”

In Moore’s view, that means God can’t legally be removed from public life, whether it’s prayer in a public school or a religious symbol in his courtroom. Years of court rulings to the contrary are wrong, he says.

“You have the right to believe what you want to, but you don’t have the right to believe this country was not founded on the belief in God because it’s not true,” Moore told a Republican group in Florence earlier this month.

I find it fairly incredible that Moore managed to force a replay of the same exact controversy once he got seated to the Supreme Court. When the Court of Judiciary unanimously voted to unseat him in 2003, many predicted that Moore would use the affront to mobilize his troops and win another higher. In 2006, the former Justice launched a primary challenge to Governor Bill Riley, a Republican. In a crushing defeat for Moore that showed the limit of his appeal and of his one-issue crusade, the incumbent prevailed 66% to 33%.

Does that mean Moore should not be taken seriously in 2000? Absolutely not. Next year, circumstances will be very different - and much closer to Moore’s victory in the 2000 primary: Not only will there be no incumbent, but the non-extremist vote will be split between many mainstream contenders. (Treasurer Kay Ivey, former junior college Chancellor Bradley Byrne and state Rep. Robert Bentley are already running; Secretary of State Beth Chapman is looking at the race.)

Moore can count on a dedicated base of supporters, which could make the difference in a crowded race: 33% might have been insufficient for Moore to unseat Riley, but it could easily prove large enough if the remainder splits between three to four establishment candidates.

In the general election, Moore would face a tough road. His ultra-conservative profile might be enough to secure a third of the Republican base but convincing a majority of the general election electorate is quite another thing; Rep. Artur Davis and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks are both credible candidates that would suddenly go from underdog to favorite if Moore became the GOP nominee.

Yet, it would be a mistake to consider Moore unelectable - and no one should not wish his winning the GOP nomination in the hope that it will help Democrats win the general election. After winning a crowded primary in 2000, Moore easily beat an experienced judge. Not only is it debatable that state voters would be open to voting for Rep. Davis, who is African-American, but Alabama is now conservative enough that any Democrat could face a hard time piecing together an electoral coalition.

Major Correction: Commenter BW catches a truly huge mistake in this post: Alabama has runoff elections. If no candidate gets 50% in the first round of the primary (in June) the two top vote-getters move on to a runoff (in July). That means that Moore cannot win the nomination based solely on the crowded field. While I think he has a good chance of moving on to the runoff, he would need to pass the 50% threshold at some point - and I doubt he would be able to do so given the result of the 2006 primary. The best Democrats can hope for, then, is that hardcore conservatives get so encenced that they boycott the general election - though that did happen in 06 either.


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Governor: Cox enters Michigan race, Alabama field gets crowded

It is striking that the Republican fields in a number of open gubernatorial races is as chaotic as it gets. In Georgia, five credible candidates (including one U.S. representative and two statewide officials) are already running; in South Carolina, a U.S. representative and two state lawmakers are in the race and two statewide officers are expected to join the fun. The situation is getting similar in two other states.

Michigan’s race is wide open

Attorney General Mike Cox was long expected to jump in the gubernatorial race and he finally did so earlier this week. “I will be a governor who is willing to make the tough decisions to help grow Michigan’s economy,” he said in his statement, predictably focusing on the issue that will should help Michigan Republicans the most next year: Democrats have controlled Lansing for much of the past decade and the GOP hopes voters will want to change the state’s leadership.

Before getting a chance to make such an argument in the general election, Cox will have to survive a Republican primary: Rep. Peter Hoekstra is also running, and many other Republicans are considering doing so as well: Domino’s Pizza CEO David Brandon, Rep. Candice Miller and Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land are said to be mulling a run.

But Cox got a major break a few weeks ago when one of the most formidable potential Republican opponents (Oakland County executive L. Brooks Patterson, a well-known politician who led one of the state’s most populous counties since 1992) ruled out a run. Like Patterson, Cox is from the Detroit suburbs so this could help the Attorney General solidify his support in his geographical base; by contrast, Hoekstra is from Western Michigan - as is Lynn Land, who is also mulling a run. All of this could put Cox at an advantage.

In good timing, EPIC-MRA tested the gubernatorial race:

  • In the Republican primary, Hoekstra receives 27%, Cox 26% and Lynn Land 19%.
  • In the Democratic primary, Senator Debbie Stabenow leads Lieutenant Governor John Cherry 49% to 14%. Speaker Andy Dillon and Flint Mayor Williamson, who are both mentioned as potential candidates, only get 1%. (It’s unclear why the pollster decided to include Stabenow in the poll as I have never heard her mentioned as a gubernatorial contender; my guess is that Cherry is so favored to be the Democratic nominee that they decided they might as well test another match-up.)
  • In the general election, the three match-ups tested found margins within the margin of error: Cherry leads Hoekstra 36% to 33%; leads Cox 36% to 35%. He is behind Lynn Land 35% to 34%. (Stabenow leads by 8% to 9%).

In short, this race is wide open, both in the Republican primary and in the general election. And I would not rule out the possibility of a competitive Democratic primary: once Stabenow is removed from the equation, maybe Democrats other than her and Cherry can show some sign of life.

Alabama: The first major GOP entrants

For months now, Democrats have had their Alabama field set: Rep. Artur Davis and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks have announced their candidacy, while Lieutenant Governor Jim Folsom has said he is not running. On the GOP side, however, we had only gotten Republicans to say they would not jump in: Rep. Jo Bonner and Attorney General Troy King both chose to run for re-election instead.

Well, the GOP finally got a prominent candidate - two of them, actually. Kay Ivey, the state Treasurer since 2003 and a former Democrat (in the 1980s), jumped in the race this week, as did former state Senator and junior college Chancellor Bradley Byrne.

Both have a fairly right-wing profile, though neither looks like a movement conservative. During the 2008 presidential campaign, Ivey put out a “Call for Conservatives,” asking voters to back Mitt Romney over John McCain but she also looks like she will be more moderate than other contenders. As for Byrne, The Press-Register’s calling him a moderate might not indicate that he is actually at the political center but it certainly suggests that he is not as far to the right as some factions of the state GOP.  That could leave the door open for someone like former Justice Roy Moore to attempt a political comeback.

(Interestingly, the most likely additional Republican candidate is Secretary of State Beth Chapman, making it somewhat likely that the Republican nominee will be a woman. Alabama has only had one female Governor: Lurleen Wallace, the wife of George Wallace, who only served for about 18 months.)

Democrats have a primary of their own to worry about, the prospect of a nasty Republican fight should not give them an opening even though the Davis-Sparks showdown could be taken care of a month earlier. (A two-way fight means that one candidate is likely to cross 50% in the first round held in June, while the resolution of the more crowded Republican race could be delayed until the July runoff.)


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Two new GOPers eying statewide runs: Roy Moore and Sharron Angle

Here’s another Republican eying a Reid challenge

Nevada Republicans are having trouble finding a candidate to challenge Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: Lieutenant Governor Brian Krolicki has been indicted, Jon Porter lost his House seat last fall, Rep. Dean Heller is said to be more interested in a gubernatorial run, and former state Senator Joe Heck has already ruled out a Senate run. Once considered the most vulnerable Democratic incumbent, Reid is looking increasingly safe - and the GOP will have to move quickly if they want to at least him tie up to his home state over the next two years.

Meet Sharron Angle, a former Assemblywoman from Reno who has started to explore a run, e-mailing thousands of former contributors to ask them whether they would be willing to support her. In 2006, Angle lost a brutal three-way primary for the open seat in NV-02. Dean Heller won the nomination 35,9% to 35,29% for Angle - a difference of 321 votes. (Heller went on to win the general election in this red-leaning district.) Two years later, Angle lost another primary - this time against an incumbent state Senator.  Angle has a very conservative profile, and she ran to the right in the 2006 primary: The Club for Growth poured a million on her behalf. Last year, she took a leading role in pushing for last year’s Prop 13, a  Property Tax Reform Initiative that would limit the annual property tax increase to 2%.

The short take: Angle is certainly no top-tier candidate, but she has enough political experience that she should be taken seriously. If the political environment becomes toxic for Democrats or if Reid’s popularity plunges like that of many other incumbents, she would certainly be a credible threat - not to mention that she could get substantial financial backing from conservative activists and from the Club for Growth.

Roy Moore mulls yet another comeback

Four years after being crushed by Governor Bill Riley in Alabama’s gubernatorial primary, Roy Moore is considering mounting a repeat run next year. “I’m very inclined to enter,” he said. If Moore does enter, it would undoubtedly make the Republican primary very entertaining to follow, but the former Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court would face significant obstacles to his winning the nomination.

That should come at a disappointment for Democrats: Even by Alabama’s standards, Moore is well at the extreme of the political spectrum and he would face a tough road winning the general election. After all, Democrats might have lost a lot of ground in the state but they are sure to field a credible nominee: Rep. Artur Davis and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks are both seeking the Democratic nomination; either one would be favored against Moore.

Moore was ousted from his job in 2003 for refusing to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments from the state courthouse; he soon became a hero in socially conservative circles. When he decided to challenge Riley for the Republican nomination in 2006, many believed that the Governor had much to fear because Riley would be able to fire up the party’s base and draw support from evangelical groups, and Moore indeed ran a campaign filled with religious themes and centered on the idea that American law should be based on God’s sovereignty.

Yet, Moore never emerged as a serious contender and he lost by a massive 66% to 33% margin. That certainly suggests that Republican voters were not comfortable enough with their former Chief Justice to rally by his side - and why should things be different next year? Sure, Moore would not face an incumbent since Riley is term-limited out of office, but the Republican establishment has other candidates to rally around - starting with Treasurer Kay Ivey. More importantly, times have changed: In 2006, Moore was at the height of his fame and he still only received 33%. Now, six years have passed since his standoff with the federal judiciary; Moore has taken some far-right stances (he for instance argued that Keith Ellison, the first Muslim congressman, should be barred from sitting in the House) but nothing particularly newsworthy.

Moore’s clearest hope resides in the prospect of a crowded Republican primary. If nothing else, the former Justice can surely count on a dedicated base of supporters - enough to receive a significant plurality of the vote. If there are many candidates, that might be enough to win him the nomination.


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Two unexpected twists in Southern Governor’s races

In the 2002 midterms, Republican candidates defeated three Southern Democratic incumbents to capture the Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina governorships. Now, all three of these Republican Governors are term-limited out of office, which gives Democrats an opportunity to reclaim a share of power in the South. Yet, these three states have colored themselves so red that the GOP has the undeniable upper-hand in each of them and much will depend on the quality of Democratic recruitment. And yesterday, two unexpected developments shook up the Democratic field in Georgia and South Carolina.

Georgia: In surprise move, Thurbert Baker jumps in

In 2008, Democrats managed a small comeback in the Peach State (Obama only lost by 5%), giving them hope about 2010’s gubernatorial election. And in a relatively unexpected move, Democratic Attorney General Thurbert Baker decided to enter the race.

Baker became Attorney General in 1997, when he was appointed by none other than then-Governor Zell Miller. He won re-election races in 1998, 2002 and 2006 - the latter by a 15% margin. As a current statewide office holder, Baker is undoubtedly a very credible candidate and his entry could guarantee that Democrats will be able to nominate someone who will be taken as a serious general election contender. Other Democrats are considering jumping in the race, including former Governor Ray Barnes and Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond. Former SoS David Poythress is already running.

Baker is African-American; at this point in time, it would be lazy and cliched reporting to say that his race could hurt him in the general election: Last fall, Barack Obama came within a few percentage points of winning the state - and he got roughly the same level of support as Senate candidate Jim Martin, who is white. Sure, 2010 should not be as favorable to Democrats as 2008, but it is also undeniable that Georgia voters will be more open to supporting a Democrat in a local race than in a federal one.

Baker has a conservative profile - even by the standards of Georgia Democrat. His focus on law-and-order issues makes his record look that much more conservative. For instance, Baker championed the abolition of parole for persons convicted of violent crimes - a measure that has not been enacted by the Assembly. Even before serving as Attorney General, Baker was already focused on such issues: In the mid 1990s, he sponsored the state’s “Two Strikes and You’re Out” law.

Perhaps most controversially, Baker played a prominent role in the case of Genarlow Wilson, the black teenager who was convicted to ten years in prison for engaging in oral sex with a 15-year old girl, who was white. That was a blatantly unfair sentence for unbelievable and outrageous charges. “The racial dimension of the case is likewise hard to ignore and perhaps unfortunately has had an impact on the final outcome of the case,” Jimmy Carter wrote in a letter to Thurbert Baker. And yet, when an appeal court reduced to sentence from 10 years to 12 months, Baker immediately appealed the decision and stayed Wilson’s liberation. That understandably caused anger, particularly among African-American politicians like Rep. Joseph Lowery.

It looks like Baker wil continue down that path: The only indication his spokesperson provided The Atlanta Journal Constitution is that Baker intends to run a “tough-on-crime campaign.” Now, I understand that a Georgia Democrat has to position himself much further to the right than a New York Democrat, but there are limits to how far to the right he can go without making a primary victory impossible and endanger his general election prospects by alienating his base.

Let’s look at some potential issues: For one, black voters represent half of the Democratic primary electorate; Baker might be African-American, but his rhetoric on crime combined with the Genarlow Wilson case could make it difficult for him to win the primary - particularly if another black candidate jumps in the race. Furthermore, the 2010 midterms will be probably fought on economic issues; voters will not care about law-and-order as much as they would have a few years ago.

Finally, the current climate gives Democratic candidate a chance to run on a populist platform. What is Baker’s platform on the economy? How will he connect with voters on what is sure to be their primary concern? Baker might be the highest-profile Democrat to enter the race, but his viability remains to be determined.

Alabama: Folsom and Sparks trade roles

It will arguably be even harder for Democrats to win Alabama’s governorship. The state has anchored itself in the GOP column, gave McCain a 22% victory and the GOP has a strong bench to choose from. Yet, Democrats are setting themselves up for a competitive primary - but not with the candidates we were expecting.

Rep. Artur Davis, an African-American with a centrist record, has already announced he will run. Two other Democrats were considering running: Lieutenant Governor Jim Folsom and Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks. In recent weeks, reports insistently suggested that Folsom was strongly leaning towards the gubernatorial race and that Sparks was about to jump in the Lieutenant Governor’s race.

Yesterday, the two traded roles. First, Folsom announced that he would seek re-election. Then, Sparks withdrew his name from the Lieutenant Governor’s race and scheduled press conferences across the state to “announce his plans for 2010.” As the Times Journal writes, the implication is clearly that Sparks is planning to jump in the gubernatorial race.

A Davis-Sparks showdown would be highly competitive. In 2008’s presidential primary between Obama and Clinton, 51% of the electorate was black and 44% was white. That alone gives Davis a narrow edge. Sparks could try to run to Davis’s left on economic issues given the representative’s centrist record in Congress, but it is unclear how much he would be comfortable in such a role. (Note that some want Sparks to challenge Rep. Rogers in AL-03, where he resides.) As for the general election, both men would start as underdogs, but they would both be credible contenders.


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Governor: Reading the Andrew Cuomo tea leaves, Troy King out in Alabama

Is Andrew Cuomo preparing for a gubernatorial run?

Even if Andrew Cuomo had no plan to challenge New York Governor David Paterson in next year’s Democratic primary, recent polls finding him crushing Paterson by startling margin should have attracted his attention - not to mention that the state’s Democratic leaders are surely worried enough about the Governor’s general election prospects that they would love to have Cuomo take the nomination.

For now, Cuomo had dropped little to no hints about his intentions, but a new development suggests that the Attorney General is laying the groundwork for a gubernatorial run: Cindy Darrison, one of Eliot Spitzer’s top fundraiser who then worked for Paterson, is now being hired by Cuomo’s camp! Darrison had just left Paterson’s team last month, claiming that her departure was “motivated by a desire to expand her consulting business,” as she told the Daily News at the time. As her new career move indicates, Darrison might had more in mind.

Indeed, February’s Daily News article also contained this gem: “I asked if she is raising money for anyone else these days, and Darrison replied that she will be making several announcements in the coming weeks.” Does that imply that Darrison already knew she would be hired by Cuomo when she left Paterson’s camp last month? If that is the case, should we not interpret that as a sign that the Attorney General is building his team in opposition to the Governor? (After all, Darrison was not a full-time employee of Paterson, so she would not have to necessarily fully quit one position before committing to another.)

Finally, would Cuomo need to hire such high-profile, well-connected (and probably onerous) consultants on top of his pre-existing team if he was only looking to run for re-election in 2010? After all, he is not expected to face a competitive race if he seeks another time as Attorney General.

While Cuomo makes up his mind, Paterson’s political situation is certainly not improving. Paterson’s popularity has collapsed as the state’s budget woes have worsened; he has recently been forced to negotiate, propose, or back down on a series of tax increases, and his current clash with environmental groups over his reversal on power plant emissions will not endear him to the state’s Democratic base. Paterson must also put up with staff defections. Above, I wrote about Darrison’s departure in early February; this week, the Governor’s top policy adviser left to become an executive at a medical testing company. Is this a result of tensions in Paterson’s office, or a sign staffers are worried they might be out of a job if they stick around with the Governor?

Troy King out of the Alabama Governor race

Alabama Republicans have a long list of potential candidates for next year’s open gubernatorial race, but they can take the state’s Attorney General off the list: Yesterday, Troy King announced that he would seek re-election in 2010, ruling out a run for the Governor’s office. Other potential GOP candidates include Secretary of State Beth Chapman and Treasurer Kay Ivy.

A year ago, King was viewed as an ambitious politician and a probable gubernatorial candidate. But things have gone downhill since last spring. Old accusations of shady ethical conducts took on a whole new level when rumors started spreading that the gay-bashing King had been discovered having an affair with a male aide. And earlier this week, King became the target of a federal investigation on two issues: gambling and his office’s targeting of certain individuals; prosecutorial efforts are being led by U.S. Attorney Alice Martin, a Republican.

In these conditions, it is not surprising that King decided that he would not be able to win the gubernatorial race’s Republican primary. His only hope to continue his political career is to try to run for his current office as an incumbent and hope that no credible candidate challenges him.

In related news: Rumors started circulating last week that Alabama’s Commissioner of Agriculture Ron Sparks was about to announce a run for Lieutenant Governor. Sparks is mentioned as a possible gubernatorial candidate, so such an announcement would have had a major impact on the Democratic field. Yet, a week has passed and we have yet to get confirmation of Sparks’s intentions, so he remains a potential gubernatorial candidate. For now, Rep. Artur Davis is the only candidate in the race, but Lieutenant Governor Jim Folsom is also said to be actively mulling a run.



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    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • What remains on the table

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Confusion in Connecticut (Updated)

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Results thread, part 2: Dems suffer staggering losses in House and legislatives races, limit damage in statewide races

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Election Night results thread: Rep. Boucher’s fall first surprise of the night

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Election night cheat sheet

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • Final ratings: Democrats brace for historic losses

  • Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

    Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

    Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55
  • What to watch for down-ballot

Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

Strict Standards: mktime(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 41

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 50

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 52

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 54

Strict Standards: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected 'America/New_York' for 'EDT/-4.0/DST' instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/functions.php on line 55

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1002

Deprecated: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is deprecated, use preg_replace_callback instead in /homepages/33/d214989360/htdocs/wp-includes/kses.php on line 1003

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