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U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter will hear arguments in Delegates to the Republican National Convention v Republican National Committee on August 6, at 8:30 a.m., in the federal courthouse in Santa Ana, California (case number 8:12-cv-927). This is the lawsuit filed by 119 Republican national convention delegates who charge that the Republican national presidential convention process is flawed. The Republican National Committee has filed a motion to dismiss the case. The Republican National Committee is also arguing that a great deal of evidence submitted by the plaintiffs should be rejected, because it was filed late and some of it wasn’t properly served on the defendant.
The overwhelming majority of plaintiffs are Ron Paul delegates. The plaintiffs also include some voters and other individuals who are not delegates.
The Justice Department's inspector general found "at least seven instances of federal employees engaging in illegal attempts to hire family members at the agency," The Hill reports.
"The report is the third investigation in less than a decade that has found numerous examples of illegal hiring practices, amounting to nepotism, within the DOJ."
On July 25, attorneys for the Pennsyvlania elections office filed a brief in Constitution Party v Aichele, the case filed by the Constitution, Green and Libertarian Parties over the unique Pennsylvania system that puts petitioning groups at risk of paying court costs of up to $110,000 if their petitions are found insufficient. The state’s brief says the parties don’t have standing to challenge the system. The case is in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, 5:12-cv-2726.
U.S. News and World Report Story Says Janet Brown, Director of the Commission on Presidential Debates, is Very Aware of Gary Johnson Fight for Inclusion in Debates
This U.S. News & World Report story says that Janet Brown, veteran director of the Commission on Presidential Debates, is very aware of the campaign to get Gary Johnson included in the presidential debates. The headline of the US News & World Report story is misleading. The real substance is that reporters now know that the Commission is aware of unhappiness with the process, which not only requires that Johnson receive 15% in public opinion polls, but that most polls don’t even include him.
Very interesting: First Cameraman: Documenting the Obama Presidency in Real Time by Arun Chaudhary.
Reflections of the first official White House videographer from the early months of the 2008 presidential campaign and through the first two and a half years of the Obama administration.
A new Pew Research survey finds eight-in-ten voters who know Mitt Romney is Mormon say they are either comfortable with his faith (60%) or that it doesn't matter to them (21%).
However, the survey also finds that nearly four years into his presidency the view that President Obama is Muslim persists. Currently, 17% of registered voters say that Obama is Muslim; 49% say he is Christian, while 31% say they do not know Obama's religion.
A top Senate Democrat is trying to broaden the outcry over looming spending cuts set to begin next year, warning in a new 181-page report that cuts in social services would have a deep impact on children, families, and the poor.
USOC Demands End to Olympic Images in Negative Ads
Olympics officials are upset that images from the games are ending up in negative ads.
Attuned to the public's ambivalence, both political parties and the presidential candidates are playing down the climate issue.
Two economics professors at Gonzaga University in Spokane have published “The Effect of the Top Two Primary on the Number of Primary Candidates.” It will appear in a future issue of the Social Science Quarterly, journal of the Southwestern Social Science Association. It is already available on-line, but it requires payment. See here for the link to the article on the Wiley Online Library.
The article is by John H. Beck and Kevin E. Henrickson. Comparing the Washington state classic open primaries of 2004 and 2006 with the top-two primaries of 2008 and 2010, the article conclude that the top-two system appears to have caused a reduction in the number of Democrats who run for the Washington state legislature. Each year, there are 123 or 124 regularly-scheduled legislative races in Washington state, and the study uses complex statistical analysis to show that, in the average election year under top-two, 18 to 19 fewer Democrats run for the legislature than if the top-two system did not exist. The evidence in the article is entirely statistical, except for one anecdote, in which the chair of the Democratic Party is quoted as saying, “I, as party chair, have to go and talk people into not participating, and I think that’s really unfortunate.”
The reason party leaders discourage party members from running is that if a major party has too many candidates for a single seat, the party is in some danger that no member will qualify for the November ballot. The article thus provides evidence for the point that top-two open primary systems reduce voter choice in primaries, and enhance the power of “party bosses”. Thanks to Mark Rogalski for news of the article.
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