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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / FL-Gravis Marketing: Clinton 39% Bush 37%; Clinton 44% Rubio 35% on: September 02, 2014, 06:29:29 pm

2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: NFL draft prospect Michael Sam comes out as gay--UPDATE: cut by Rams on: September 02, 2014, 05:55:31 pm
Yeah, looks like he's joining the Dallas practice squad:

3  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XVI: Sidejackin' it in the Train Room. on: September 02, 2014, 03:03:08 pm
And to be fair, Bushie was asked about relaxations.

Ban the member who asked him.

RIP Eraserhead.
4  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Have things ever happened to you you thought would make a good Onion article? on: September 02, 2014, 08:11:27 am
It's not "local man".  It's "area man":


5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: The "Who is running?" tea leaves thread on: September 02, 2014, 12:48:18 am
Christie is boning up on foreign policy, presumably as a precursor to a presidential bid:


This summer, Mr. Christie finished “Reagan at Reykjavik,” Ken Adelman’s history of the pivotal 1986 Cold War summit meeting. He has struck up a friendship with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, now an informal foreign policy tutor; is known to consult with former Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger on major speeches that touch on world affairs; and is in contact with trusted Republican hands like Robert B. Zoellick, a career diplomat and former head of the World Bank.

After spending nearly three hours with Mr. Christie at the State House in July, spinning through the geopolitics of Asia, the economic future of Europe and the energy industry in Mexico, Mr. Zoellick described his pupil as “very quick.”

“Sometimes people will flag,” he said. “He didn’t at all. It could have gone on longer.”
6  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: 2016 primary calendar tilts towards the South on: September 01, 2014, 08:33:42 pm
The fact that the primaries might start this late is also bad for Paul, since the filing deadline for US Senate in Kentucky is at the end of January, and Paul can't run for both Senate and prez at the same time unless the law is changed.  So he could wait to see the results from Iowa, but then he'd have to make some kind of decision about whether to continue with his presidential campaign.
7  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Civil War in Syria on: September 01, 2014, 08:25:57 pm
We need to call a truce with Assad and focus on ISIS for the time being. If we could work with the Soviet Union to defeat fascism in Europe, we can work with Assad's Syria to defeat Islamism in the Middle East.

Assad is a threat to the Syrian people. ISIS is a threat to all people. We have to pick the least worst option.

In the absense of evidence that ISIS has concrete plans to launch terrorist attacks in the West, I fail to see how ISIS in Syria is enough of a threat to merit bombing them, just so that Assad can retake territory from them.  ISIS in Syria is bad for Syria.  Assad in Syria is bad for Syria.  Why should we bomb one of them to help the other?  Especially since bombing ISIS in Syria and thus helping Assad risks unraveling the US's existing alliances with Sunni governments in the region.
8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: NFL draft prospect Michael Sam comes out as gay--UPDATE: drafted by Rams on: September 01, 2014, 08:13:48 pm

Sam played for the Rams in the preseason, but has been cut from the team, and was not picked up for the practice squad:


Unclear whether he'll actually make it onto any team's roster now.
9  Questions and Answers / The Atlas / Re: Recent bans on: September 01, 2014, 06:16:50 pm
Did FDRfan1985 get banned?

10  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Potential Next First Spouses on: September 01, 2014, 09:35:43 am
I have an old thread on this topic:

11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Which party would other countries vote for? on: September 01, 2014, 08:38:36 am

Of course, in the real world, other countries care about American politics in large part because of US foreign policy.  The Republicans are the more nationalist of the two major parties, so they're less popular in other countries, just as nationalist parties in other countries are also less popular outside their home nation's borders.

If we're now imagining a scenario in which foreign countries can vote in US elections….how does that work?  Is the scenario that they're now US states, and so they have to live with whatever domestic policies the Democrats or Republicans they elect support?  In that case, they probably wouldn't care nearly as much about foreign policy as they do now.  The whole hypothetical doesn't really make much sense, so not sure how to answer.
12  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: The "Who is running?" tea leaves thread on: September 01, 2014, 01:44:01 am
Portman says he won't try to run for Senate and president at the same time, and that's part of why he's expected to decide shortly after the midterms:


When it comes to U.S. Sen. Rob Portman’s presidential prospects, the Republican says he is “ going to see who’s running and what they’re saying” after the 2014 election and then decide whether to enter the race.

But he won’t have too long to think about it.

Even the hint of Portman possibly seeking his party’s nomination for the White House instead of running for re-election to the Senate in 2016 is creating buzz over which Republican might go after the office he holds.

He has said he would not run for both offices, and if Ohio’s Republican primary is in March 2016, he would have to file either for re-election or to run for president (in Ohio) by mid-December 2015. But for the sake of his party, his deadline would need to be much earlier.

But he also says:

“I’m planning to run for the Senate in Ohio, I really am.” But he reiterated that he will take a look at the GOP’s presidential field and could jump in.

Portman is currently in New Hampshire campaigning for Scott Brown:

13  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rick Perry indicted on abuse of power on: August 31, 2014, 10:53:49 pm
An interesting (now deleted) tweet from earlier today:


Although the tweet came from Perry’s personal account — as opposed to the ones run by his staff — it was unclear Sunday evening whether he actually sent it out. The governor was reportedly preoccupied working the crowd at McLane Stadium in Waco as Baylor’s football team played its first game there.

"A tweet just went out from my account that was unauthorized. I do not condone the tweet and I have taken it down.

— Rick Perry (@GovernorPerry) September 1, 2014"
14  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: latest Betfair odds on: August 31, 2014, 09:06:00 pm
Rubio retakes the lead.  Romney still gaining, and Perry has gained some more post-indictment:

Rubio 16.8
Bush 14.5
Paul 11.6
Christie 10.5
Romney 9.1
Cruz 6.0
Walker 5.3
Perry 4.8
Ryan 4.5
15  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Should "A Bag of Weed" from Family Guy be used as a campaign song? on: August 31, 2014, 08:49:54 pm

Agreed.  And I knew what that was going to be before I clicked the link.
16  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Should "A Bag of Weed" from Family Guy be used as a campaign song? on: August 31, 2014, 09:05:26 am
Of all the polls I have encountered in my travels, this was the most……stupid.
17  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Congressional Elections / Re: Women in Senate on: August 31, 2014, 06:02:36 am

Updated predictions on this?
18  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: does bushie represent the average oklahoman? on: August 31, 2014, 02:55:23 am
This raises an interesting question: Which state in the Union has the greatest (per capita) number of people for whom a life blog would generate as much interest here as "Update" does?
19  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Predict the top tier candidacy announcements in both parties. on: August 31, 2014, 02:37:10 am
On the GOP side…..

I had thought that Ryan might announce that he's out as early as November, in order to clear the way for the W&M chairmanship, but it sounds like he might not believe that's necessary.  So actually, he might be one of the last to declare….waiting on the sidelines and not likely to run, but possibly jumping in in the summer of 2015 if he changes his mind.

It looks like Bolton, Jindal, and Portman (if he runs) might be among the first to announce exploratory committees after the midterms, perhaps some time in the November-January timeframe.  Bush also says that he wants to decide, one way or the other, by the end of the year.  Perry will probably announce at least an exploratory committee right after he leaves office in January.

After, that, the next group to announce would be Carson, Cruz, Paul, Rubio, and Santorum (not necessarily in that order), perhaps around February-April or so.  Possible complication for Paul is the fact that running for both senate and president at the same time seems to be prohibited by Kentucky law, so he might try to work out a loophole before he launches his campaign.

Christie, Pence, and Walker (assuming his reelection, which might not happen) will probably be a bit later, but not too late, simply because running for president as a sitting governor is trickier than doing so as a sitting Senator (in principle, this should apply to Jindal too, but we have this).  Perhaps late April or May for them.  Not sure if Pence is legitimately interested, so maybe he puts it off a bit longer.  Huckabee probably procrastinates until May, and then decides not to run, like last time.

On the Democratic side, if Clinton runs, she announces an exploratory committee in January or February, simply because delaying beyond that puts any other potential candidates on the spot.  Not sure if anyone significant runs against her or not.  I don't think O'Malley will.  I guess Sanders is her most likely opponent, and not sure if he'd be in a hurry to formally declare.  He might wait and see if any other challengers to Clinton from the left emerge first.  On the other hand, if he's going to run, he might as well milk it for all it's worth, and get his name out there early.
20  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: BREAKING: American forces bomb ISIS targets in Iraq on: August 31, 2014, 01:39:36 am
Australia will also supply arms to the Kurds:


Australian planes will risk anti-aircraft fire from Islamic State militants to land on Iraqi soil to deliver arms and munitions to Kurdish fighters.

Appearing alongside Prime Minister Tony Abbott at a press conference in Canberra on Sunday, the Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshall Mark Binskin, told reporters the weapons would not be dropped from the air, but the aircraft would land so that the arms could be handed over to Peshmerga officials.

"We will be doing the missions in a controlled manner and making sure that we know who we are handing the arms and munitions to," Air Chief Marshall Binskin said.
21  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: BREAKING: American forces bomb ISIS targets in Iraq on: August 31, 2014, 01:36:13 am

Australia has joined the United States, France and Britain, dropping food and water by air to the beleaguered Iraqi town of Amirli, which has been under siege by Islamic State militants for nearly two months, the Pentagon said. US air strikes supported the humanitarian mission.

Thousands of Shiite Turkmen have been stranded in the farming community about 170 kilometres north of Baghdad. The aid came at the request of the Iraqi government, Pentagon press secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement.

Military operations will be limited in scope and duration as needed to address the humanitarian crisis in Amirli and protect the civilians trapped in the town, Kirby said.
22  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / 2016 primary calendar tilts towards the South on: August 30, 2014, 03:01:16 am
OK, I already mentioned in this thread that Arizona has now moved its primary out of February and into March.  That still leaves Michigan on Feb. 23rd, and a few other "rogue states" in February that neither the DNC nor RNC really wants there.  FHQ's latest blog post clears a few things up that remained murky to me when the RNC tweaked its rules earlier this year.

Without getting too deep into the weeds, the short version is this: The new rules the RNC adopted back at the 2012 RNC left a two-tiered penalty system for going early.  The chosen four of IA/NH/NV/SC are allowed to go first, and all the other states are supposed to go on March 1 or later.  However, states that go up to a week earlier than March 1 (Arizona and Michigan had been scheduled for Feb. 23rd, for example) would get a 50% delegate penalty, as in 2012.  States that went even earlier than that would get a "super penalty" that eliminates nearly all of their delegates.  As of January of this year, it looks like that is changed, and there is no one week window anymore.  Any primary or caucus held even one day before March 1 results in the "super penalty" (again, with IA, NH, NV, and SC being exempt).  The DNC has similarly stiff penalties, and gives exemptions to the same four states.

So, I expect the few remaining February primary states, including Michigan, to move later.  This also puts emphasis on the South, since Super Tuesday this time around looks very southern-heavy, and South Carolina will now be the last primary held before Super Tuesday, so it provides the last bit of momentum.

Possible tentative calendar would then be:

Jan. 25th: Iowa caucus
Feb. 2nd: New Hampshire primary
Feb. 13th: Nevada caucus
Feb. 20th: South Carolina primary
Mar. 1st: Super Tuesday

And what states will vote on Super Tuesday?  Right now, looks like:
Others likely to join them include:
maybe Georgia and North Carolina as well.

So, at least so far, very southern heavy for Super Tuesday, with Texas and Florida being the biggest delegate prizes there.

Given that, it would be hard for a candidate like Christie, with limited southern appeal, to score an early knockout victory, where they win by sweeping the early contests.  The first three contests are outside the South, but after that is SC, and then a big dose of the South on Super Tuesday.  Though if there is no early knockout by any candidate, and it becomes a long term war of delegate accumulation, then someone like Christie would have a better chance, since, as noted in this thread, the non-southern states largely use delegate allocation methods that are closer to WTA, and that are tilted more towards GOP voters in urban areas.

[The above largely focused on the GOP side, but the same applies to the Dems.  The Dems will have basically the same calendar, so the same focus on the South after the opening IA/NH/NV contests.]
23  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update XVI: Sidejackin' it in the Train Room. on: August 30, 2014, 01:55:27 am
Update seems to be returning to 2011 levels of tediousness, though that's not a bad thing for Bushie.
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: The "Who is running?" tea leaves thread on: August 30, 2014, 12:58:44 am
O'Malley making his third trip to NH this year on Sept. 26:

25  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Obama is distant, aloof, weak and absent on: August 30, 2014, 12:41:14 am
I want to see Beet's reaction to these latest Obama comments:

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