Friday, March 27, 2009


INCUMBENT: Patty Murray, Democrat
  • First Elected in 1992
  • Defeated George Nethercutt in 2004 (55% - 43%)
  • DOB - 10/11/1950
POTENTIAL CHALLENGERS (names being tossed around): Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rogers, Congressman Dave Reichert, Attorney General Rob McKenna


A February Poll conducted by Research 2000 shows Patty Murray with a comfortable lead over potential Republican challengers, Dave Reichert (+13) and Rob McKenna (+16). As Washington trends more and more blue, don't expect any of these guys to actually run..especially as long as Murray continues to poll so well.  Many Washington insiders believe Rob McKenna's true ambition is to be elected as Washington's next governor in 2012. As US House members, McMorris-Rogers and Reichert have everything to lose and therefore unlikely willing to risk it all for a long-shot run against a strong incumbent.


INCUMBENT: Ron Wyden, Democrat
  • First Elected in 1996
  • Defeated Al King in 2004 (62% - 34%)
  • DOB - 05/03/1949
POTENTIAL CHALLENGERS (names being tossed around): Gordon Smith


Gordon Smith found a job recently at a Washington D.C. law firm. It's a good thing for him because back in November, Jeff Merkley and the people of Oregon fired him from the U.S. Senate. A lot of Republicans would like to see Smith run again, although it's unlikely unless the political climate for Republicans changes for the better.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


INCUMBENT: Barbara Boxer, Democrat
  • First Elected in 1992
  • Landslide victory over Bill Jones in 2004 (57% - 38)
  • DOB - 11/11/1940
POTENTIAL CHALLENGERS (names being tossed around): Chuck Devore (Announced), Carley Fiorina, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger


Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has made it official: He will not be running in '10. That leaves the door wide open for Boxer. A Rasmussen poll conducted in March 2009 reveals a daunting task for Republicans with Boxer leading Schwarzenegger by 16 (50-34) and Fiorina by 9 (47-38). Chuck Devore, not mentioned in the poll, is a California Assemblyman from Irvine who believes he has a shot at defeating Boxer. His website is up already as he intends to "shamelessly copy everything President Obama did in his online campaign."

Monday, March 23, 2009

Outrage Over AIG Bonuses Not (Yet) Hurting Obama's Approval

Nate Silver over at FiveThirtyEight has an analysis of the president's still-solid approval rating, even since last week's AIG salvo. He points out Gallup's number (65) has actually went up since the public first learned of the AIG bonuses. Rasmussen's daily number (56) is down just one point. The truth is likely somewhere between the two.

While Americans have been monitoring the situation closely, they don't blame Obama and his administration..yet.
Instead, they blame AIG itself, and may see Obama as being as much of a victim as a co-conspirator. We should keep in mind that, among the 95 percent of the population that does not follow politics especially closely, what they've seen is Obama expressing some (tempered) outrage about the bonuses and saying he'll do whatever he can to recoup them...The perception is that AIG broke the rules, not (as is actually closer to the mark) that the rules were inadequately written.
Whether or not the general public feels the same way next week or next month remains yet to be seen. Obama clearly cannot sustain these numbers if the daily headlines continue to inform Americans of more bailouts.  A recent NYT's article, for instance, claims that Obama will disclose a plan this week to purchase $1 trillion in bad debt.  Update:  See the plan here in Geithner's own words.
This is not to suggest that there aren't longer-term risks for the White House. Any further actions that are perceived as a "bailout" will now require more political capital, and may in fact be entirely impossible. This may come to a head this week, as further details emerge about Treasury's bank rescue plan, which is so far receiving almost uniformly terrible reviews.
On the other hand, this recent pitchforks and torches war against the rich could be beneficial to Obama.

We shouldn't forget that Republicans (true or not) have long had the reputation of protecting fat salaries of the rich with loopholes and taxcuts. It'll be a tough sell for the GOP if they attempt to blame Democrats of selling their souls to those benefiting from the AIG bonuses. And given the fact that 85 House Republicans voted with Democrats to tax AIG bonuses at 90%, it may be easier for Obama to use those votes as leverage to repeal the Bush tax cuts down the road. Silver continues:
Populist sentiment, ultimately, may prove to be both the greatest asset and the greatest risk to the Administration as it tries to enact its agenda. Can the Administration rely on the populist vanguard to shift the Overton Window on matters of class? Or will the broad-based left-of-center coalition that elected Obama cleave itself into halves, making it harder for the Administration to achieve political consensus?

One thing's for certain: populist sentiment, whatever the Administration chooses to make of it, is no longer something it can afford to ignore.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The President's Bracket (and mine too)!

Basketball is a religion where I grew up.  We Hoosiers like to believe that we know a little about the sport given our reputation (Bob Knight; Larry Bird; Hoosiers; Purdue alumnus, John Wooden).  

Many of us even wondered if Indiana's recent political about-face had anything to do with the President's affection for hoops. Before 2008, Indiana hadn't gone blue since 1964.  LBJ played forward in High School by the way. 

The President today unveiled his own bracket, a first by any sitting President.  As I write, Hoosiers everywhere are gushing.  As for his picks, he's got six of eight regional final teams coming from blue states.  The election is over Mr. President! There's no more need for campaigning!

I've got Louisville taking home the crown this year for the first time since 1986 (see bracket below).  The President also has the Cardinals in the Final Four but has North Carolina winning it all.  We should also point out that the President has made 7 visits to North Carolina since last May. Coincidence?  Maybe not...

Here's the video of Barack Obama explaining all of his picks, including the Tar Heels as his national champ.

Bill Newsome's 2009 NCAA Basketball Bracket

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Survival Of The Fittest News

As newspapers around the country struggle to stay in business, one journalist believes the future of news is getting better, not worse. Steve Johnson on the evolving news ecosystem.
I think that steady transformation from desert to jungle may be the single most important trend we should be looking at when we talk about the future of news. Not the future of the news industry, or the print newspaper business: the future of news itself. Because there are really two worst case scenarios that we’re concerned about right now, and it's important to distinguish between them. There is panic that newspapers are going to disappear as businesses. And then there’s panic that crucial information is going to disappear with them, that we’re going to suffer as culture because newspapers will no long be able to afford to generate the information we’ve relied on for so many years.

I am bullish on the future of news, as you can tell. But I am not bullish on what is happening right now in the newspaper industry. It is ugly, and it is going to get uglier. Great journalists and editors are going to lose their jobs, and cities are going to lose their papers... The old growth forest won’t just magically grow on its own, of course, and no doubt there will be false starts and complications along the way.
Read Steve Johnson's entire speech here.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Stephen Wayne Moody

Stephen Wayne Moody, age 59, of Murfreesboro, passed away on March 6, 2009 at his residence. Mr. Moody was born in Kokomo, Indiana. He was originally from Murray, KY. He was a graduate of Murray State University and the University of South Carolina.  Mr. Moody was a lifetime scholar with an international career. He held the position of Vice President of Sales at AT&T before retiring in 2001 and moving back to the Middle Tennessee area. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church and was active in various organizations affiliated with the Democratic Party. He was a devoted brother, uncle, and a loyal friend and mentor to many.

Mr. Moody is preceded in death by his parents, Reuben and Audra Burgess Moody. He is survived by two sisters, Susan (Rick) Bowerman from Mt.Juliet and Sandra Sahli of Naples, FL; and his beloved nephew, Jonathan Sahli.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 14, 2009 at J.H. Churchhill Funeral Home in Murray, KY. Burial will follow in Wofford Cemetery in Dover, TN. Friends will serve as active pallbearers.

Visitation will be 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 12, 2009 at Jennings and Ayers Chapel in Murfreesboro. A second visitation will be 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, March 13, 2009 at J.H. Churchhill Funeral Home in Murray, KY

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the American Heart Association, 1818 Patterson St., Nashville, TN 37203. 

Jennings and Ayers Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. 820 S. Church St., Murfreesboro, TN 37130. 615-893-2422.  

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Forever Remembering Stephen W. Moody

Our lives here at ElectBlue have recently been shaken by the unexpected death of a founding contributor. The world of politics suddenly lost one of the best when Stephen Moody passed away on Friday, March 6th. 

A brilliant political scholar and a champion of civil rights, his influence on those in his community, wherever he lived, was broad and long lasting. For many, including myself, he did more than just influence us. Indeed, he changed our lives for the best -- forever. We miss him deeply already.

In the coming days and weeks, we will be adding to ElectBlue additional memories of Steve as well as information about his catalogue of achievements. Several blogs posted by Steve can be found in the ElectBlue Index, which is located on the left column of this page.

For those who do not have our telephone contact information, please contact us via email for updates regarding funeral arrangements. We can be reached at
We invite you to post your own personal, online condolence on this blog. Simply click the word "comments" located immediately below. 

Our Faith in Our Creator affords us the privilege to ask for your prayers and support as we cope with the loss of our beloved Steve.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Tell Congress: End Don't Ask Don't Tell

Yesterday, Ellen Tauscher (D-CA), reintroduced the Military Readiness Enhancement Act to the U.S. House of Representatives. This legislation, if passed by Congress and signed by President Obama, would officially end the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Policy (DADT). Since 1993, dedicated Gays and Lesbians who have proudly served their country have been forced to keep secrets and be dishonest. Since then, more than 12,000 Gays and Lesbians have been discharged for breaking the DADT policy.

The time for action is now, and here's what you can do to help. (You can do all four in less than 15 minutes).
1. Ask members of Congress to end DADT. Start with Representative Tauscher (and others on the House Armed Services Committee) by letting her know she has your support. Her number is located below. 

2. Call your own US Representative today. Voice your support for an end to the military's DADT policy. Ask him/her to join the 144 House members who have already signed on as cosponsors. It’s time, once and for all, that all men and women who are fighting to defend our country be treated equally. Your phone call will make a big difference.

3. Send an email to your US Representative using the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network website (click here). By simply entering your zip code, you can send an email to your congressional representative within a few minutes. They have a preformatted letter which can be sent as is, or you can add/edit/tweak to your liking. Click "Send," and you're done.

4. Most important. Tell your friends and family to join our effort to end DADT.
You can bet that this legislation will be met with fierce resistance from several Republicans and maybe even a few Democrats. They will vigorously oppose, as they always have, the rights of Gays and Lesbians regardless of the facts. We have to look no further than the recent results of California’s Prop 8 election to know the challenge we face. Although the political climate has never been more favorable, we must not lose sight of the tough battle ahead of us.

It’s estimated that 65,000 Gays and Lesbians are serving in the armed forces today. Please make your voice heard for them now. Below the fold you will find Rep. Tauscher’s Washington D.C. phone number and a recent interview she did with Think Progress. 

To find out who your own elected US Representative is, simply go to and enter your zip code. There you will find a link to your Representative’s website.

Representative Ellen Tauscher
Washington D.C.
2459 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
phone: 202.225.1880

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Cooper on Pelosi's Crap List

Politico reports on who's in the Speaker's 'disfavor file,' including Nashville's own Jim Cooper.
The fiscally conservative gadfly would have topped the list had he not reversed his first stimulus “no” by voting in favor of the final package.

Even so, the most outspoken of the Blue Dog Democrats is still on thin ice with leadership, thanks to his comment that he “actually got some quiet encouragement from the Obama folks” for initially bucking Pelosi on the stimulus. That required a hasty Obama-Pelosi cleanup effort that resulted in a Cooper clarification — although he continues to express dissatisfaction with what he sees as Pelosi’s top-down leadership style.

Counterintuitively, Cooper enjoys a good relationship with many in Pelosi’s inner circle, including Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Waxman — with whom Cooper shared a long lunch at the Democrats’ recent retreat in Williamsburg, Va.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Fair & Balanced Screen-Shot of the Day

Here's the state-run counter-revolutionary media making up their own headlines yet again. The AP news story mentions earmarks but never once uses the word "pork."

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Republicans Should Keep Doing What They're Doing

While the fringe right wing continue searching for the future of their party in radio, others who oppose them use video cameras to show the world how stupid these crackpots really are.

Pam over at House Blend, for instance, blogged today about Alexander Pelosi's HBO documentary "Right America Feeling Wronged." We've seen these types of videos before. Flocks of illiterate, racist, maniacs gather together to watch each other foam at the mouth.  Ask yourself after watching, "How many of these brains actually know what socialism really is?"    

This is the here and now (and probably the immediate future) of the Republican party. These are the people who brought us Bushonmics. They are the 25% who approved of Bush when he left office. Now, with Limbug at the helm of their party, we're sure to see more videos just like this.  Man, I can't wait! I found this one just by searching for tea party on Youtube. This guy seems confident of victory in '10 and '12. 

After the ass-beating Republicans took in November, who could have predicted their new stage right strategy?  Not me. But then again, we shouldn't underestimate their inability to get it

Republicans should keep doing what they're doing. To them I say, "Keep it up!" Keep it up with your tea parties.  Keep inviting crackpots to headline your gatherings. Keep embracing leaders who desperately want the president to fail.  

Americans aren't buying what these nuts are selling. Not anymore. While it may be true that these movements are solidifying the base, it's equally important to note that the Republican base is now a minority base.  Translation - There's more of us than them.  Thank god, right?  

The president's approval rating remains in the upper 60's, and Americans trust Democrats in congress by far more than their Republican counterparts (50-38).  If we're lucky enough, maybe they will continue to ignore the polls. Keep it up!