Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Secret Service Getting Involved

The impotent anger has been boiling over at McCain and Palin rallies recently, with calls for violence from the audience, goaded on by speakers at the podium. It is getting serious enough now that the Secret Service is investigating death threats against the Democratic presidential candidate.
The U.S. Secret Service is investigating a threatening remark directed at Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama during a political event in Scranton.

The agency followed up on a report in The Times-Tribune that a member of the crowd shouted, "Kill him!" after one mention of Mr. Obama's name during a rally Tuesday for Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

The remark came while congressional candidate Chris Hackett was addressing the crowd at the Riverfront Sports Complex. There is no indication Mr. Hackett or Mrs. Palin, who took the stage a half-hour later, heard the remark.

The remark was reported almost immediately on the newspaper's Web site and today in the print edition.

Times-Tribune employees who covered the rally were interviewed today by the Secret Service.

Spokesman Darrin Blackford said the agency takes the threat seriously. If the agency can determine who shouted the remark, it would present that information to federal prosecutors, he said. Secret Service investigating threat from Scranton Palin rally


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea-not anon
Anyone see the video of that "rally" in Ohio-more of the same racist violent noise. Not that I am a fan of McCain but I think he must be ashamed of this- not so Palin. She seems to fit right in.

October 15, 2008 6:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea-not anon
just on the NEws- CNN/Time poll has Obama ahead 10 points in Virginia.

October 15, 2008 6:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

uwrhpIt's still true; I don't like black people.

October 15, 2008 7:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why does McCain blink so much when someone talks to him?? BECAUSE HE IS LYING!!!

October 15, 2008 10:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We all know that you are a bigot, AnonBigot, but thank you for telling us so point-blank.

October 15, 2008 10:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

who's this TTFer that keeps saying racist things every couple of weeks?

"It is getting serious enough now that the Secret Service is investigating death threats against the Democratic presidential candidate."

Someone shouted "Kill him" at some rally. The Secret Service is obviously going to investigate. They will investigate every hint of a threat to a presidential candidate, as is their job. I'm sure it happens in every election.

It didn't "get serious enough".

October 16, 2008 12:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The six polls out today have no obvious outliers. A seventh poll was also released but it is one of those flawed "expanded" polls that include ACORN registered "voters".

Of the six, two polls now put Obama's lead at 3. The avergae of the three is 5.

And these were all before Mac took Joebama to the woodshed this evening.

Joebama was on the defensive all night.

October 16, 2008 12:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fifty-eight percent of those surveyed by CNN said they believed Obama won Wednesday night's contest; 31 percent said they thought McCain came out on top. The margin of error was plus or minus four percentage points.

CBS restricted its poll to uncommitted voters, but found similar results -- 53 percent of respondents said they thought Obama won, while 22 percent said the same for McCain and 24 percent called it a draw. No word yet on the margin of error there.

McCain loses again

John McCain promised to kick Barack Obama's "you know what" on Wednesday night. He hinted that he'd bring up former Weather Underground leader Bill Ayers and worse. Instead McCain bludgeoned Obama with Joe the Plumber, and the effect was more farce than fierce.

McCain mentioned the now-famous plumber, Joe Wurzelbacher, an apparently wealthy Toledo businessman who complained he'd pay more taxes under Obama's plan, more than he talked about Sarah Palin or Osama bin Laden, by far. Midway through the 90-minute conversation, Obama was addressing Joe the Plumber, too. And it was clear by then that McCain had lost three straight debates.

McCain was a little bit less grumpy than in earlier matchups. He never once called Obama "that one," and he even made eye contact with him more than once. But he couldn't control his sarcasm. His worst move was ridiculing Obama's support for abortion rights measures that protect "the health of the mother." He sneered out the words, "health of the mother," and actually framed them in air quotes. His standing with women was already plummeting; watch it drop more from here.

McCain's take on the economic crisis was likewise tin-eared. He again promised a spending freeze, which most economists believe would be a terrible move during a recession, and said he'd first take a hatchet, then a scalpel to the federal budget, which sounded a little deranged. He kept talking about "angry" voters, and again, he sounded angry, a little bit too angry. He did bring up Bill Ayers, as well as the claim by civil rights hero John Lewis that the McCain-Palin campaign is fostering a climate of racial division and even violence. The two men's exchange over the tenor of the campaign wound up being one of Obama's finest moments, and one of McCain's worst.

Obama defended Lewis as a "hero," while noting that Lewis himself had backed away from the statement a bit, and then criticized McCain for tolerating rallies where backers scream "terrorist" and "traitor." That pushed McCain into declaring flatly: "I'm proud of the people who come to our rallies. I'm not going to stand for them saying that the people who come to our rallies are anything other than the most patriotic great citizens." (I can't wait to see that clip spliced along with ugly moments at McCain-Palin rallies; someone's working on that now, I promise.) Overall, McCain, who's run the most negative campaign of the two, sounded like the biggest whiner. He complained about trying to watch an Arizona Cardinals football game on Sunday, but "Every other ad was an attack ad on my healthcare plan." Poor John.

As usual Obama was calm, measured, reassuring. I loved their exchange over Obama's reservations about a free-trade agreement with Colombia, the importance of which McCain insisted Obama didn't really understand. "Actually, I understand it pretty well," Obama replied. "Labor leaders have been targeted for assassination. We have to stand for human rights and make sure violence isn't being perpetrated against workers who are organizing for their rights." Imagine a president who can think that well on his feet, and who'll stand up for workers' rights.

McCain's less-bad debate performance won't change the downward arc of his campaign. The latest Los Angeles Times poll found him trailing Obama by 9 points, and also showed that Sarah Palin is driving more voters away from McCain than she was pulling in. The Associated Press reported Wednesday that the Republican National Committee is cutting off presidential advertising in Maine and Wisconsin, to focus on states like Colorado, Missouri, Indiana and Virginia. McCain needed a big win, and I haven't heard anyone yet who thought he got it. CNN poll: Obama 58, McCain 31.

October 16, 2008 7:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Retreating as they brace for congressional losses, Republicans have canceled television advertising in a key Senate race in Louisiana and scaled back ads in eight competitive House contests.
The moves signal a scramble by Republicans, three weeks before nationwide elections, to hold off a Democratic surge.
Majority Democrats, by contrast, are investing in an expanding list of GOP targets — many in Republican strongholds — even as they move to protect their own marginal members.
In pulling planned advertising in Louisiana, Senate Republicans' campaign committee has essentially abandoned its only chance this year to topple a Democratic incumbent, Sen. Mary Landrieu, who is in a competitive race with John Kennedy, the state treasurer who was heavily recruited to challenge her.
The moves reflect the tough choices cash-strapped Republicans are having to make in the crucial last stage of the campaign, as Democrats threaten to encroach on what was previously considered safe GOP ground.
Senate Democrats' political arm is now targeting Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader, and Georgia Sen. Saxby Chambliss with new ads.
Democrats knowledgeable about the media purchases confirmed the decision, first reported by The Fix, a blog published by The Washington Post.
Republicans have "seen the writing on the wall," said Matthew Miller, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.
Rebecca Fisher, a spokeswoman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, declined to comment.
Democrats, who hold a 51-49 Senate majority that includes two independents who caucus with the chamber's 49 Democrats, now have solid leads in five races. They have realistic chances of picking up as many as nine seats and believe they are within reach of their longer-shot goal of capturing a filibuster-proof 60 seats. While Landrieu was their only at-risk incumbent, Republicans have six vulnerable sitting senators, in Alaska, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, North Carolina and Oregon.
Meanwhile, the GOP's House campaign committee has canceled advertising in Nevada's 3rd district, where third-term Republican Rep. Jon Porter is in a tight race with state Senate minority leader Dina Titus, and in Idaho's 1st, where Rep. Bill Sali leads Democrat Walt Minnick, according to officials.
It's also pared planned ads for candidates in southern Minnesota and central New Mexico who are in close contests with Democrats seeking to replace retiring Republicans.
In addition, the GOP has pulled back in four districts that are home to vulnerable Democrats, including in the Palm Beach, Fla., district of Rep. Tim Mahoney, who's embroiled in a sex-and-hush-money scandal. Also canceled were ads aimed at toppling Democrats Nancy Boyda in Kansas, Don Cazayoux in Louisiana and Nick Lampson in Texas.
A Republican official stressed that the plans could change, particularly after the campaign arm gets back new survey data in the coming days and reassesses its chances in key races. The official would discuss campaign strategy only on condition of anonymity.
At the same time, House Democrats' political committee is targeting Republicans once believed to be safe in ironclad GOP districts, including Reps. John Shadegg of Arizona, Mark Souder of Indiana, Ron Lewis of Kentucky and Lee Terry of Nebraska.
Those were among the 45 districts where the Democratic committee poured close to $8.3 million for "voter communications" — mostly ads — this week, according to reports filed Tuesday with the Federal Election Commission. That list includes 34 seats held by Republicans, 20 of them incumbents.
Mahoney's race was not on the extensive list of Democratic investments, but several of the most vulnerable Democratic incumbents were, including Jerry McNerney of California, Carol Shea-Porter of New Hampshire and Paul E. Kanjorski of Pennsylvania.
Republicans were advertising in nine districts this week, all but two of them currently in GOP hands. The party committee reported spending about $750,000 on voter communications this week.
Democrats have had an edge in House and Senate races all year, but the advantage has become more pronounced as the international financial meltdown has reshaped the fall campaigns, dragging down GOP presidential nominee John McCain's poll numbers as well as those of Republican congressional candidates.
In the House, Democrats appear likely to add as many as a dozen seats to their 235-199 majority and could pick up twice that number depending on the strength of the emerging surge.
Public polls and strategists indicate Democrats are well-positioned to pick off as many as 10 Republican House incumbents — in Alaska, Connecticut, Florida, Michigan, New York, Ohio and Washington, among others — and are leading in efforts to shift into the Democratic column more than a third of the 29 seats left open by GOP departures.
In the Senate, 35 seats are being contested — 23 GOP and 12 Democratic. All 435 House seats — including one vacancy — are up for grabs.

October 16, 2008 7:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Walt Whitman High School Debaters Debate the Debate

October 16, 2008 9:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obama will win the presidential election. It could be with 300-320 electoral votes, or it could be with 350-380 electoral votes. At this point, Obama shows no signs, a la Clinton, of playing it safe and looking out only for his own interests. He's looking to help elect more Democrats in both the House and the Senate, and increasing his margins such that he will have a clear mandate to govern from Day One.

Democrats are poised to take 8-12 new Senate seats, and 30-35 new House seats. They are looking at a potential 100 seat margin in the House and a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate.

Republicans are in disarray. With little money, a presidential campaign spiraling out of control, and a host of problem Senate and House races, they are pulling up stakes in both Wisconsin and Maine, with more states likely to follow in the coming days. The focus is now shifting from electing McCain and unseating Democratic incumbents to protecting vulnerable Republican incumbents. But there are so many such vulnerables that choices have to be made.

The open seat races in Colorado, New Mexico and Virginia were abandoned weeks ago.

John Sununu in New Hampshire? Forget it.

Gordon Smith in Oregon? Over.

Liddy Dole in North Carolina? History.

Ted Stevens in Alaska? Don't even start.

The one incumbent who still remains for Republicans to support is Norm Coleman in Minnesota, and that's because Democrats have never been thrilled at the idea of comedian Al Franken as a U.S. Senator. And yet in recent polls, he's moved into the lead, as McCain's post-convention support in Minnesota has evaporated. Coleman might still pull this out, but I wouldn't count on it.

For Republicans, the focus has shifted to previously "safe" races such as Saxby Chambliss in Georgia, Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, Roger Wicker in Mississippi, and John Cornyn in Texas. Even popular incumbent Susan Collins in Maine has shown vulnerability recently, and is getting an infusion of scarce cash from the national party.

On the House side, the number of Red to Blue races targeted by the DCCC (led by Maryland's own Chris Van Hollen) was just increased to 63. Now, not all of these will result in Democratic wins, but it shows the scope and breadth of the Democratic operation.

It's looking like 2008 will go down as one of those once in a generation elections where a fundamental shift in the electorate takes place, as voters are poised to deliver an across-the-board rejection of the Republican Party, its leaders and its ideas.

November 4 is shaping up to be a bad day to be a Republican. I can hardly wait.


October 16, 2008 9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The more I see of Obama the more I like him.

October 16, 2008 1:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leave your gay fantasies off the blog, Robert.

October 16, 2008 5:57 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, you're an idiot.


October 16, 2008 6:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

chill, Jim

I kid Robert just help him moderate his blood pressure

now, go bang a gong, you hockey puck!

October 16, 2008 7:20 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon, what you call "kidding," isn't. I try not to come down to your level but sometimes something needs to be said.


October 16, 2008 8:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim, how can you put up a post like this and not mention that at Obama rallies supporters have shown up with Palin is a c*nt t-shirts....

you have no shred of intellectual honesty.

October 17, 2008 2:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you have no shred of intellectual honesty.

IMHO equating wearing a controversial tee shirt with calling for murder of a presidential nominee is a fine example of intellectual dishonesty.

And anyway, I thought the GOP was pro-business, pro-free enterprise. So invest in American business, take your pick, or not.

Anti-Palin items for sale

Anti-Obama items for sale

October 17, 2008 8:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea-not anon
I heard Obama's comments from the Al Smith dinner last night- pretty funny from a former president of the Harvard Law Review. I heard David Frum(sp?) today- he said McCain can win- all he needs to do is get the Dow up 5000 points and move home values up by 20% around the US in 2 weeks- and this guy is a conservative.

and on a different note- Please drink Starbucks- I helped the economy and bought Starbucks stock yesterday. I have faith in the future of an Obama presidency.

October 17, 2008 8:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Large crowds, like those at political rallies, always attract a couple of fringe types. CRG protests, for example, always have some gawkers from TTF present.

I'm quite sure there have people at Obama rallies who have said threatening things about McCain. It's part of being a public figure.

The media has really gone over the top this time. Americans may be catching on. Obama's lead is shrinking.

Charles Krauthammer describes the situation in today's column:

"Let me get this straight. A couple of agitated yahoos in a rally of thousands yell something offensive and incendiary, and John McCain and Sarah Palin are not just guilty by association -- with total strangers, mind you -- but worse: guilty according to the New York Times of "race-baiting and xenophobia."

But should you bring up Barack Obama's real associations -- 20 years with Jeremiah Wright, working on two foundations and distributing money with William Ayers, citing the raving Michael Pfleger as one who helps him keep his moral compass (Chicago Sun-Times, April 2004) and the long-standing relationship with the left-wing vote-fraud specialist ACORN -- you have crossed the line into illegitimate guilt by association. Moreover, it is tinged with racism.

The fact that, when John McCain actually heard one of those nasty things said about Obama, he incurred the boos of his own crowd by insisting that Obama is "a decent person . . . that you do not have to be scared [of] as president" makes no difference. It surely did not stop John Lewis from comparing McCain to George Wallace.

The search for McCain's racial offenses is untiring and often unhinged. Remember McCain's Berlin/celebrity ad that showed a shot of Paris Hilton? An appalling attempt to exploit white hostility at the idea of black men "becoming sexually involved with white women," fulminated New York Times columnist Bob Herbert. He took to TV to denounce McCain's exhumation of that most vile prejudice, pointing out McCain's gratuitous insertion in the ad of "two phallic symbols," the Washington Monument and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Except that Herbert was entirely delusional. There was no Washington Monument. There was no Leaning Tower. Just photographs seen in every newspaper in the world of Barack Obama's Berlin rally in the setting he himself had chosen, Berlin's Victory Column.

Herbert is not the only fevered one. On Tuesday night, Rachel Maddow of MSNBC and Jonathan Alter of Newsweek fell over themselves agreeing that the "political salience" of the Republican attack on ACORN is, yes, its unstated appeal to racial prejudice.

This about an organization that is being accused of voter registration fraud in about a dozen states. In Nevada, the investigating secretary of state is a Democrat. Is he playing the race card, too?

What makes the charges against McCain especially revolting is that he has been scrupulous in eschewing the race card. He has gone far beyond what is right and necessary, refusing even to make an issue of Obama's deep, self-declared connection with the race-baiting Rev. Wright.

In the name of racial rectitude, McCain has denied himself the use of that perfectly legitimate issue. It is simply Orwellian for him to be now so widely vilified as a stoker of racism. What makes it doubly Orwellian is that these charges are being made on behalf of the one presidential candidate who has repeatedly, and indeed quite brilliantly, deployed the race card.

How brilliantly? The reason Bill Clinton is sulking in his tent is because he feels that Obama surrogates succeeded in painting him as a racist. Clinton has many sins, but from his student days to his post-presidency, his commitment and sincerity in advancing the cause of African Americans have been undeniable. If the man Toni Morrison called the first black president can be turned into a closet racist, then anyone can.

And Obama has shown no hesitation in doing so to McCain. Weeks ago, in Springfield, Mo., and elsewhere, he warned darkly that George Bush and John McCain were going to try to frighten you by saying that, among other scary things, Obama has "a funny name" and "doesn't look like all those other presidents on those dollar bills."

McCain has never said that, nor anything like that. When asked at the time to produce one instance of McCain deploying race, the Obama campaign could not. Yet here was Obama firing a preemptive charge of racism against a man who had not indulged in it. An extraordinary rhetorical feat, and a dishonorable one.

What makes this all the more dismaying is that it comes from Barack Obama, who has consistently presented himself as a healer, a man of a new generation above and beyond race, the man who would turn the page on the guilt-tripping grievance politics of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton.

I once believed him."

October 17, 2008 10:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The CK column you cite has nothing to do with threatened violence by supporters of political campaigns, it's about the race card being used.

No one has threatened Palin's or McCain's life at an Obama or Biden rally. Threatening to kill the other candidate at a rally and not being told by the speaker on stage that such language is unacceptable, is purely a GOP phenomenon.

October 17, 2008 11:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andrea- not anon
From the Times(of London)

"General Colin Powell, the former Secretary of State, is preparing for a live TV interview on Sunday amid intense speculation that he is ready to endorse Barack Obama's presidential campaign.

Aides from John McCain's campaign are bracing themselves for another damaging blow with one being quoted suggesting that such an announcement from Mr Powell would be "personally embarrassing" for the Republican nominee - with whom he has been friends for 25 years - and would "create momentum against us”.

I think the aide means "more mometum against us"

October 17, 2008 3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The US Supreme Court just sided with the Ohio State Board of Elections and ruled that the GOP did not have standing to bring suit in Ohio. Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner said the lawsuit was an attempt by the Ohio GOP to disenfranchise Ohio voters.

Disenfranchising voters has long been a favorite GOP tactic.

I wonder when Rove and Meier will finally testify about what they know about the firing of all those qualified US Attorneys during Gonzalez's term as Attorney General. Those attorneys were fired because the GOP White House wanted more prosecutions of voter fraud, even when there was no evidence of any. An internal investigation by Bush's DOJ uncovered enough evidence of White House involvement in those firings that a special prosecutor has been named to investigate the charges. The Washington Post has recently reported the investigation will focus on the dismissal of Iglesias in New Mexico. He was the subject of repeated complaints by Republican lawmakers to White House and Justice Department officials in 2005 and 2006 over not bringing voter-fraud and corruption charges against Democrats. Their report said the internal probe at Justice could not reach Miers and Rove, "both of whom appear to have significant first-hand knowledge regarding Iglesias's dismissal."

October 17, 2008 4:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I wonder when Rove and Meier will finally testify about what they know about the firing of all those qualified US Attorneys during Gonzalez's term as Attorney General."

Never. The firing wasn't illegal. If you want to make it so, write your Congressman.

October 18, 2008 7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RCP Average 10/16 - 10/24 -- -- 50.4 42.5 Obama +7.9
Rasmussen Reports 10/22 - 10/24 3000 LV 2.0 52 44 Obama +8
Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby 10/22 - 10/24 1203 LV 2.9 51 42 Obama +9
Newsweek 10/22 - 10/23 882 LV 4.0 53 41 Obama +12
Gallup (Traditional)* 10/21 - 10/23 2406 LV 2.0 50 45 Obama +5
Gallup (Expanded)* 10/21 - 10/23 2365 LV 2.0 51 44 Obama +7
Hotline/FD 10/21 - 10/23 766 LV 3.5 50 43 Obama +7
ABC News/Wash Post 10/20 - 10/23 1321 LV 2.5 53 44 Obama +9
GWU/Battleground 10/19 - 10/23 1000 LV 3.1 49 46 Obama +3
IBD/TIPP 10/19 - 10/23 1008 LV 3.0 46 42 Obama +4
CBS News/NY Times 10/19 - 10/22 771 LV -- 52 39 Obama +13
FOX News 10/20 - 10/21 936 LV 3.0 49 40 Obama +9
NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl 10/17 - 10/20 1159 RV 2.9 52 42 Obama +10
Associated Press/GfK 10/16 - 10/20 800 LV 3.5 44 43 Obama +1
Ipsos/McClatchy 10/16 - 10/20 773 LV 3.5 50 42 Obama +8
CNN/Opinion Research 10/17 - 10/19 764 LV 3.5 51 46 Obama +5
Pew Research 10/16 - 10/19 2382 LV 2.5 53 39 Obama +14

GOP 'goner' list warns of House rout

An internal document circulating among House Republicans warns of an impending congressional bloodbath, listing 58 Republican-held House seats being at risk, and 11 already considered as good as gone. As many as 34 GOP-held seats are in serious jeopardy of swinging to Democrats, the assessment shows.

The state-of-the-race update, first reported on by U.S. News’ Paul Bedard, shows the GOP already writing off the seats of Reps. Tom Feeney (R-Fla.), John R. Kuhl (R-N.Y.), Don Young (R-Alaska) and Tim Walberg (R-Mich.). It also expects losses in the seats of retiring GOP Reps. Rick Renzi of Arizona, Jerry Weller of Illinois, Jim Saxton of New Jersey, Mike Ferguson of New Jersey, Vito Fossella of New York, James Walsh of New York and Tom Davis of Virginia.

Drafted by a Republican consultant, the document ranks seats on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the most likely for a Democratic takeover. Eleven members received a 5, meaning the seat is gone unless “a significant turn of events” changes things in the final two weeks. An additional seven seats are ranked as a 4, in the leaning Democratic category, and 16 seats are in the tossup category...

October 25, 2008 10:07 AM  

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