• Tips gratefully accepted here. Thanks!:

  • Recent Comments

    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    riverdaughter on Shiny Happy People
    riverdaughter on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    riverdaughter on Shiny Happy People
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Oh yes Republicans would like…
    Ivory Bill Woodpecke… on Shiny Happy People
    William on Jeopardy!
    jmac on Jeopardy!
    William on Jeopardy!
    riverdaughter on Oh yes Republicans would like…
  • Categories

  • Tags

    abortion Add new tag Afghanistan Al Franken Anglachel Atrios bankers Barack Obama Bernie Sanders big pharma Bill Clinton cocktails Conflucians Say Dailykos Democratic Party Democrats Digby DNC Donald Trump Donna Brazile Economy Elizabeth Warren feminism Florida Fox News General Glenn Beck Glenn Greenwald Goldman Sachs health care Health Care Reform Hillary Clinton Howard Dean John Edwards John McCain Jon Corzine Karl Rove Matt Taibbi Media medicare Michelle Obama Michigan misogyny Mitt Romney Morning Edition Morning News Links Nancy Pelosi New Jersey news NO WE WON'T Obama Obamacare OccupyWallStreet occupy wall street Open thread Paul Krugman Politics Presidential Election 2008 PUMA racism Republicans research Sarah Palin sexism Single Payer snark Social Security Supreme Court Terry Gross Texas Tim Geithner unemployment Wall Street WikiLeaks women
  • Archives

  • History

    January 2010
    S M T W T F S
  • RSS Paul Krugman: Conscience of a Liberal

    • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.
  • The Confluence

    The Confluence

  • RSS Suburban Guerrilla

  • RSS Ian Welsh

  • Top Posts

In Defense of the “Emily’s List candidate”

(note from Dkat:  Please welcome our own Wonk the Vote to the front page)

Yesterday on MSNBC during the Ed Shoutz hour, before the big election results were in, Ed posed the following question throughout his show: Is the Massachusetts senate race a referendum on Obama? One of his guests was Salon editor Joan Walsh. With a straight face Joan said that “this is not any kind of a referendum on President Obama, it is a referendum on Martha Coakley.”

After the race was called for Scott Brown, Walsh was on MSNBC again and went further out of her way to take the low road, saying “feminists need to put on their grown-up pants” and “take their lumps.”

Meanwhile, Paul Begala over on CNN one-upped Walsh, chastising Coakley for running “the worst campaign from a Democrat that we’ve seen since I don’t know when… Ms. Coakley mocked Brown for going out to Fenway Park where they were having a hockey game outdoors, and shaking hands. She mocked him for that. She said Curt Schilling, for goodness sakes, was a Yankee fan. You know, just on and on.”

Looking at the actual substance and context of what Coakley said about Fenway Park, it was a sarcastic response to the dismissive notion that she was wasting her time at the inauguration of Kimberly Driscoll, the mayor of Salem. (For the record, Coakley won Salem, 53% to 46%). Still, it was a foot-in-the-mouth remark that did not help her win the PR battle, no doubt. Her “Curt Schilling…another Yankee” gaffe did her no favors, either, and her spokesperson trying to pass that remark off as a “very, very deadpan joke” only highlighted the fact that her campaign was desperate by that point.

None of these missteps, no matter how clumsy they were, is what cost her the election, though.

What these missteps did was reinforce a caricature of Coakley that emerged only after she reversed her position on health reform and said she would vote for the current bill as it stands. That flip was her original electoral sin. THAT was the essence of her “bad campaign.” Once she did that she was up against a tidal wave of voter disaffection that ripped apart her every comment and her every move, and she responded poorly to it. She instantly turned into a deer caught in the headlights, and it wasn’t because she didn’t have it in her to be a good senator or to run a good campaign.

The Obama apologists want to play the Blame Emily’s List card. They think shaming feminists–telling them that Martha ran a a bad campaign so suck it up–is the Get Out of Jail free card for Obama and the rest of the Democrats.

When will the Activist Left work together to support Women when they Make Good in Politics?

There is more to Martha Coakley than the one-dimensional cartoon that Begala and the rest of the mainstream media would like viewers to believe. She is a hard-working woman who has been in public service for 20 years. She is not a poor little lady who doesn’t understand politics, nor is she an elitist shrew who thinks it’s beneath her to connect with voters. She understood the politics of the primary race very well and connected with voters then, even as Caroline Kennedy was saying one of Coakley’s opponents winning would be amazing.

The “bad candidate” rationale for what happened in Massachusetts is inadequate as an explanation, and so is the “local issues” excuse. Emily’s List produced a winning primary candidate (they backed the candidate who won the popular vote in the 2008 primaries too for that matter). It’s the Obama Era of the Democratic party that has created bad electoral conditions for Democratic nominees and made it difficult for liberals to stand on principle. (Even the socialist in the U.S. Senate voted for Obama’s health insurance scam. Way to discredit the right-wing canard that Obama’s terrible policies are synonymous with socialism.)

The one surefire way to avoid becoming the target of local backlash against Obama is to run against Obama’s policies–and in today’s environment where the activist left is split up along deep fault lines (“submit to party unity or else you’re a certain class of politician, voter, or woman”), Democratic nominees do not have the benefit of a ready-made independent fundraising network to take on the Obama machine during a general election yet. Of course they could try to build one, but either way it is an uphill battle and there is no easy path to victory whatever they choose.

The “new kinda politics” that progressives were so giddy about in 2008 is exactly what strong-armed Coakley to cave and reverse her initial position that she would vote against Obamacare. And, we saw the result of that last night. The seat occupied by Ted Kennedy for 47 years has gone to a Republican who won by running against the signature “reform” effort of Barack Obama. Obama has dropped the torch that Kennedy passed to him in 2008. Whether he or any of the Democrats can pick it back up remains to be seen, but it wouldn’t hurt the Obama apologists to take their own lumps and learn from the mistakes the Democrats have made. Either that or they will need to put on their grown-up Depends before they watch the returns in November.

238 Responses

  1. Welcome to the front page Wonk!!!! Great Start!!!

  2. Exit polls confirm – it was healthcare that turned this election
    Scott Brown’s opposition to congressional health care legislation was the most important issue that fueled his U.S. Senate victory in Massachusetts, according to exit poll data collected following the Tuesday special election.

    Fifty-two percent of Bay State voters who were surveyed as the polls closed said they opposed the federal health care reform measure and 42 percent said they cast their ballot to help stop President Obama from passing his chief domestic initiative.

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0110/31708.html#ixzz0dBhNXZn4

  3. The party has to navigate the Scylla of blame-the-bitch and the Charybis of blame-the-voters. Chances are good the ship will get smashed.

  4. Joan and Paul have become Village idiots.

  5. We Honk for Wonk!
    Great post!

    One thing I can see is that women who join a party run by sexists are going to get kicked and betrayed. We’ve seen it happen to Hillary and to Coakley. We’ve seen it happen to Palin too.

  6. Great first post, Wonk, thank you for putting a clear view of this situation out there.

    I’m sorry to see Coakley lose but it’s hard to get over the finish line when you shoot yourself in the foot. The DNC made sure she didn’t win by pushing her to support something that few want.

    OT – does anyone know what is this all about??? It seems to me there are more important things the prezdint should be looking at than developing another committee.


  7. paul begala, didn’t he used to be somebody?

  8. “Obama has dropped the torch that Kennedy passed to him in 2008.”

    That’s no torch. That’s 0bama the Liar’s pants on fire! :mrgreen:

  9. Awesome post!!!

  10. Great post! Congratulations are in order.

    Joan and Paul aren’t going to find a lot of people listening to their talking heads cr*p. The other thing that Democrats and their lackeys haven’t woken up to yet is that people aren’t listening to them. The whole country watched the Democrats implode over health care yesterday.

  11. Great Post! Yeah, right MSNBC. Don’t tell me it wasn’t a referendum on Obama; idiots. Paul B. should know better.

    • Paul B does know better, he just doesn’t want to have to look for work and there are still some who believe him, I suppose.

      Great post wonk!

  12. All Barack Channel:

    President Obama said today that he believes he lost a direct connection to the American people in his first year in office because he focused too heavily on policymaking.

    Yeah, all those discussions of policy with Jay Leno took up a lot of his time.

    • bwahahahaha!

      you always find the absolute gems, myiq.

      • I googled “Obama overexposed” and got 613,000 hits.

        • I googled ‘obama loser’ and got 4,690,000 hits – there must be a message…just to make it scientific, I did ‘hillary loser’ got only 1,610,000 hits…i love research and so i extended my search to ‘obama under the bus’ 14,000,0000 hits…am I on to something???

    • Translation:

      Obama has come to realize that while he sucks at governing, he was really good at feel-good empty campaigning. He longs to return to the connection he felt with the people while surrounded by Greek columns and fainting accolytes. They loved him then. Why can’t they just let him do that, instead of all this pesky governing stuff?”

      • It was a very insightful YouTube clip of 0bama when the heckler was yelling at him during his remarks with Martha Coakley. Obama was at a loss for words. He was so uncomfortable but was pretending he was cool. It was almost like Bush reading the Pet Goat book when told of the 9/11 attack. Didn’t know what to do. there was no banter from 0bama, no quick wit, no great words, no courage, no nothing! It was very telling, and very strange. I almost felt sorry for The One. I can’t imagine Hillary not being able to deal with a situation like that. BUT 0bama seemed totally clueless and unable to deal with these abortion hecklers.

    • Please don’t tell me this means some unity speech isn’t on it’s way…

      • that should read is on it’s way.

        • I’ll bet any amount you care to wager that Obama gives a nationally televised speech within the next seven days.

          • Isn’t he do for a State of the Union within the week?

            But he probably has to give a speech about his new decision to hold off on hcr until Brown is seated since he and Brown were elected for the same reasons. He appears to be targeting Brown to be his new bff.

            That is the “keep your enemies close” wisdom?

          • Shhh! I’m trying to make a few bucks here.

          • You could be right – even BEFORE the State of the Union next week ….. afterall, he stood before the nation and told us all that he had been given a gift … the gift of words and speech.

        • maybe another trip to berlin??

    • Ugh, please tell me this won’t mean more bowling matches and beer summits.

      “I’m Barack Obama…I’m from Honolulu…I drive a TRUCK!”


  13. In NY the new democratic establishment has been threading Gillibrand with a primary fight if she doesn’t tow the Obama party line. She fell out of favor because she wasn’t one of them, an upper westside limousine in name only liberal. She was a great selection by Patterson and our governor lost support with DNC because of the appointment. Gillibrand and Patterson are both on the DNC hit list.

    • Well, I just received a contribution request in the mail from Gillibrand, who I have supported, which starts out with admitting that “…the election in Massachusetts was a disappointment…However…”, she tells me that she has “…fought tooth and nail for President Obama’s health care bill and…worked hand-in-hand with the President to invest in job creation and…listen(ed) to your concerns, making your voice heard in Washington…”

      She/the administration may have listened us, but it seems they are telling us to STFU

      Of course I sent her a response that basically said if she continues to profess support for the HCR bill in it’s current form, then she too will meet the same fate as Coakley, especially since she is not a favored pet of the administration either.

      This is starting to feel like a patriarchal coup, as well as a corporate coup to me.

      • Wait, you just got that in the mail today? Snail mail or email? Because if it’s snail mail, when the heck did they print it?

        • Good point, Bluelyon

        • Email-Here’s a copy:

          From: Kirsten Gillibrand (kg@kirstengillibrand.com)
          Sent: Wed 1/20/10 12:56 PM

          Dear Deborah,

          There is no denying: the election in Massachusetts was a disappointment. However, let us not focus on our disappointment but rather, redouble our commitment to fighting for the causes and values that are so important. I can tell you that the voters are not looking for a year of gridlock or months of excuses and hand-wringing between now and the election. Voters want action. They want solutions to the challenges they face. And they want hardworking leaders who are prepared to deliver.

          That is what I have done. I have fought tooth and nail for President Obama’s health care bill, which will provide coverage for 2.7 million New Yorkers. I’ve worked hand-in-hand with the President to invest in job creation and bring home New York’s fair share of federal dollars. And I’ve worked with all of you, traveling to all 62 counties in the state, listening to your concerns, making your voice heard in Washington, and building a campaign operation that is ready to win.

          This is the kind of hardworking leadership I have always provided.

          From my first race against entrenched Republican Congressman John Sweeney, when very few people thought he could be beaten, to my reelection against multi-millionaire former New York State GOP Chairman, Sandy Treadwell, which was the most expensive Congressional race in the country, I have always been outspent, but I have never been outworked.

          On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day this week, I thought about his words: “History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.”

          National, state and local Republicans are aggressively plotting to try and capture a Senate seat from New York. To date, we have raised over $7.1 million to ensure we have the resources to compete with the Republican attacks. I am prepared for the fight and I am prepared to win. If we continue to work together, speak out, and stay focused on solving the challenges we face, New Yorkers will cast their vote for hardworking leadership and we will deliver the change voters are still demanding.

          It is an honor to work hard for the people of this state, and I thank you for your service and your support.


  14. The Obamatrons and the WH inner circle haven’t learned anything from last night’s stunning loss. I took a fly over of the prog sites and the blame was put squarely on Martha Coakley’s shoulders: she was the worst candidate, evah. She ran a terrible campaign [very Hillary-like]. They keep saying these things again and again and again until the group-speak becomes consistent. God forbid, we should have a competing analysis or even suggest a slightly different spin.

    Then I listened to Axelrod and Gibbs this morning. Brown’s victory had nothing to do with healthcare, they repeated. It had to do with discontent, the promised “change” not coming fast enough and people hurting.

    Ya think?? And sorry, I don’t think these guys feel anybody’s pain.

    Learning doesn’t seem to be a trait of the WH crew or their idiotic followers. They don’t learn because they refuse to see, hear or speak anything that doesn’t fit the script–the Recovery is right around the corner, Obama’s brilliance will see us through and you’re going to love this healthcare bill once we foist it on you.

    Only the voters are apparently waking up. Even a few Reps and Senators [because their political necks are on the line in November] are thrashing around with something that sounds like a grumble, maybe a bit of regret.

    Will it change anything? I don’t know, but it was good to hear a deliberate shot fired across the bow from Massachusetts. It was good to hear people shouting with their vote:

    Can you hear us now?

    • Great post, Wonk, good to see you on the front page! How they are framing this makes me feel sick inside and shows their ignorance.

      Guess they can’t hear us now, Peggy Sue, which means heads will continue to roll in the midterms, I suspect.

      Here’s Obama’s juicy rationalization (paraphrased): The wave that swept Scott Brown into office is the same one that swept me into office, people want change and government has been out of touch for the past eight years.” I kid you not. It’s still all Bush’s fault and Brown and Obama are like peas in a pod. Missed the rim there, dufus.

      Little bits from the Berkeley Area:
      Last night a woman from the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee called me asking for donations to fund Dem challengers for seats being vacated by Repubs (she didn’t mention Dems bailing) I talked to her for about 20 mins about exactly why I couldn’t support Obama or the Dem machinery–May 31, caucus fraud, race cards, health bill, bailouts for the corporations, selling out women, broken campaign promises, etc. She took notes! She said she was going to google May 31 RBC meeting to find out for herself what had happened. She thanked me for my time and said “someone in this party has got to stand up and start telling the truth.”

      On the way to work this morning, I passed a billboard for an artist with the caption ‘believe in hope.’ Someone had spray painted “I will when the war is over.” This in BERKELEY!! The tide is changing, and not just in NJ and MA either.

  15. Excellent post, WTV!!! I don’t think the “blame Martha” meme is going to fly, no matter how much they push it. The people know better.

    OT, but Hillaryis44 has an excellent post today on how Obama has backed himself into a corner with no way out:

    The Hopium guzzlers, who denounced Hillary Clinton as “too polarizing” praised Obama because he said he would not fight. Recall, Obama was a “uniter not a divider”. Now the “Hillary is too polarizing” crowd wants Obama to abandon bipartisanship. But the American people who were duped by “uniter” Obama now hold his own promises of unity against him. If Obama fights, he abandons his campaign promises. If Obama does not fight, he loses. Obama, once again, because of his inexperience and boobery and self-interested politics, is in a lose/lose trap of his own making.

  16. Great job Wonk.

    Is The Confluence the only blog where EVERY COMMENTER could easily be an excellent front-pager?

    Btw you guys here at TC have been on fire lately. I’ve been lurking from my “undisclosed location” and boy have you guys been on a major-league roll.

    If work doesn’t kill me this time around, I’m convinced I’ll live forever.

  17. Well said.. the attacks on Martha have backfired and rightly so.. But it may well be that women like Hillary and Martha cannot be elected in the Democratic Party anymore, that they will not have the support from Obama, Kaine (missing) or the kidz in the Base. It appears that Party leadership chooses to engage women participation’s to keep the votes whilst running stealth intraparty campaigns against them at the same time as we saw with Hillary, now possibly Gillibrand and possibly Martha. I would not be surprised if Gov Patrick, Obama Buddy and Axelrove client, may not wish to run to take that seat back from Brown hmmm.

    Joan is a fool, it is beyond my understanding why 65% percent of college educted women supported Obama in the last election while it’s it’s down in the 40s now.

    • It’s tragic, isn’t it? This is what the backlash has lead to: a whole generation of women who’ve learned that the nail that sticks out gets hammered down.

  18. I cannot stand Joan Walsh. And Paul Begala was always a whimp afraid to upset the obots on CNN. Not surprised.

    It is a referendum on Obama. If anyone else was president Martha Coakley could have told MA to fuck off and she still would’ve won.

  19. Just thought I’d mention, Maureen Dowd’s new column, is about Gavin Newsom’s fading political career, in the wake of his work on gay rights—and Dowd, it seems, actually compared him to Hillary in a semi-positive light.

    Excerpt (full column http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/20/opinion/20dowd.html?ref=opinion):
    Like many pioneers who go first — from the “Ellen” sitcom to the Hillary drama — the mayor who staked his career on giving equal rights to gays may have to settle for paving the way. The lawyers get praised, but he got pilloried?

    Its a passing reference to say the least. I thought it was interesting though.

    • My take on it as a CA voter is that the next Blue State to send the Dems a message will be here in the crashing, thrashing golden state. We have been a blue bastion for some time and one can feel the angst here against what the Dems have wrought. We are sinking in debt; our resources are being scorched and burned; businesses can not do business here; we have sales taxes in some areas that are double digits and government employment is sucking the state dry. There is a palpable angst about San Francisco/Pelosi and I suspect Gavin is feeling the whip lash. But the over arching issue is the economy and jobs. Yes, stupid, it IS the economy. And CA folks love those pick-up trucks, atvs, off-roading, gas-guzzling machines.

      • CA voters like me like to work, eat, buy a home, educate our kids, and get medical care. I know, what a bunch of crazy commies.

      • Pick up trucks are the working man’s vehicle. They mean you don’t have to pay $50 to get the washer that cost a weeks pay home. They mean when you fix up your home you can get the 2 X 4s or drywall to your house to do the work.

        Dissing them is the equivalent of dissing the working man.

        • They’re also less likely to be found in urban (or even suburban areas).

          • Yeah, it’s almost like the DINOcrats are trying to alienate working-class voters because they really don’t want their votes, because then the DINOs would sometimes have to look out for working-class interests instead of the interests of the fat cats who own the DINOs just like the fat cats own the Elephascists–just slightly different factions of fat cats–things that make you go “Hmmmm”…. 😉

            *dons freshly folded, stylish chapeau de Reynolds Wrap while humming theme from The Twilight Zone* :mrgreen:

          • Middle class schmucks are so, ewwww. They don’t eat arugula or shop at Whole Foods and they buy their clothes at {{gasp}} Target! like, OMG! gross. So much flannel and polyester. ick.

            And you know how much Harry Reid hates the smell of tourists in the summer.

        • Artists find them useful, too.

          You can transport 20-30 of your art association’s easels in one.

          You can truck a couple 8’x8′ paintings from one side of town to the other.

          You can lay canvases, watercolor paper, museum board and 8’x4′ sheets of Gatorboard flat in the back.

          You can tote 5-gallon buckets of gesso.

          You can transport a solo show in one trip.

          But then, I don’t know anyone who calls her/himself an “artiste” or “creative class.” We all call ourselves “working (class) artists.”

      • http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-01-19/how-obama-lost-arnold/full/

        Even if you do not like Arnold he makes some good points here about California and Washington.



  20. Glenzilla, quoting a momentarily lucid Andrew Sullivan:

    Noting that even reasonable conservatives like Stephen Bainbridge are saying things like: “Obama and the Congressional Democrats (especially in the House) governed for the last year as though the median voter is a Daily Kos fan,” Andrew Sullivan writes:

    This must come as some surprise to most Daily Kos fans. But if one had traveled to Mars and back this past year and read this statement, what would you assume had happened? I would assume that the banks had been nationalized, the stimulus was twice as large, that single-payer healthcare had been pushed through on narrow majority votes, that card-check had passed, that an immigration amnesty had been legislated, that prosecutions of Bush and Cheney for war crimes would be underway, that withdrawal from Afghanistan would be commencing, that no troops would be left in Iraq, that Larry Tribe was on the Supreme Court, that DADT and DOMA would be repealed, and so on.

  21. Like the Bourbons, the Obama apologists learn nothing and forget nothing. They aren’t going to change or take their lumps, and when the Dems lose in the fall they will blame everyone but themselves. It is who they are.

    • I want the names of the 12 of the House Democrats Stupak is speaking for.

      I also want think its important for him to know that there are quite a few that expressed the fact that they wouldn’t vote for the House bill with Stupak in it.

  22. Wow, thanks so much everybody for the kind words and warm welcome. It means a lot coming from this bunch and it’s a big honor to be on the front page of TC and have that opportunity.

    I heard the clip of Obama in the George S. interview earlier, he was saying something about the voters sweeping Brown into office for the same reason they swept him (Obama) into office. Is Obama finally confessing that he’s an empty suit?

  23. Paul Lukasiak at Corrente:

    Brown managed to attract just slightly more votes that McCain got in the 2008 election (105.8% of McCain’s vote or 63,823* more votes.) But Coakley was only able to attract 56.0% of the votes Obama received in 2008 — thats 832,401 fewer votes. Or to put it another way, 3% of the 2008 Democratic electorate switched to the GOP from the Dems — but 44% of the 2008 Democratic electorate stayed home rather than vote for the Democrat again.

    There’s more at the link. I really liked Paul until he freaked out on DKat.

    • I really bring the best out in men, let me tell you!

    • Funny how that 44% is so close to the 45% of Democratic voters who said they are very unlikely to vote in 2010 elections. I think the original polls was talking about mid-terms, I guess it got an early start.

  24. Why can’t the talking heads realize that some people voted against the Dem because they wanted a progressive health care bill not this piece of crap.

    • I think they know exactly what is happening but the money wants this.

      They are hoping they can buff this to a nice shine and maybe the “low information voters” who believe themselves to be “high information voters with super savy stratergizing skills” will buy it and vote for the “progressives” anyway.

      • It’s telling that the progs still think of themselves as “high info voters” (who must trick the stupid electorate for their own good to boot) . With media outlets actively engaged in disinformation and malinformation campaigns, high quality info is not as readily available as it should be. Recognizing that we are all in that sense “low info voters” is actually a sign of intelligence, imho.

      • Exactly! It’s not that this HCR bill is too liberal that is the problem. It’s because it is not liberal enough for many of us. If it was going to provide universal health insurance, real competitive choices for citizens, expanded or continued complete coverage for our most vulnerable populations and unrestricted coverage for women’s health care, then there wouldn’t be this same kind of uproar going on. It’s not just the “teapartiers” or republicans who are unhappy with the current form of the HRC bill, it is most of the population, including people from all political persuasions. The election of Brown , against many of our own best interests, was an outcry by the people, that will ultimately change nothing. Our country has been sold to the highest bidders and we the people weren’t even consulted, even though it is our money and hard work that will be paying the bills.

  25. Good post, Wonk the Vote!

    Right, the POTUS and the party elite’s behavior have nothing to do with Coakley’s loss. Her personality and public speaking gaffs are waaaay worse than the health care reform debacle, escalation of wars, Wall Street bail outs, massive job losses …

    • Well I for one know I vote for Congressional representation based on whether or not they can name major league sports figures and who they play for(tongue firmly in cheek)

  26. what’s really funny is that the repugs think they are being voted in, Cantor what a puts, not sure if he or Clyburn is worse, ok Clyburn but he is a close second

  27. Forgive my poor manners. Great job Wonk. You are one of the more interesting voices around these parts. And there are many interesting voices.

    • I have poor manners all the time because there are endless posts/comments here that make me think. (I was a long time reader on the orange blog but never felt compelled to comment over there. I think the wheat got separated from the chaff when this blog was created.)

  28. Oooh! Swing State Project compares Hillary’s 2008 primary win to Brown’s win yesterday:

    The results between tonight’s race and the presidential primary correlate at a rate of 0.56, which is quite high.

    I’m not a bean counter/number cruncher, but they have colored maps us redneck social science majors can unnerstand.

    • Ok – I get it. Going forward all Dem losses are to be blamed on Hillary’s run for President. She is the great divider of the Democratic Party.

      Works for me…

      • That’s the lesson the Obots would like you to take from it.

      • Will seeing it that way help them win us over?

        I don’t think so.

        Here’s a little advice for the creative class -free of charge.

        When something doesn’t work, it makes no sense to continue doing it over and over again.

        It’s time to do something different than blame Hillary for all your problems.

    • They both ran against Obama’s agenda in Mass., why is that so surprising? I’d like to see a comparison of Coakley’s primary win map to these maps.

    • Trouble with that meme is that Obama won VA big, but the loses still happened here just like in MA and NJ.

  29. Welcome Wonk!!!

  30. Democrats ALWAYS blame Democratic candidates for losing. It’s never the fault of the party. Never the fault of the president. Unless his name is Clinton.

    Carolyn Kay

  31. When Politico dot com appears on CBS News, there is no Politco banner in the background. When Politco dot com appears on MSNBC, odds are you may see a huge Politco dot com banner in the background, there in lies the difference between a complete sellout and everyone else.

    • I think MSNBC and Politico have a contractual agreement. Morning Joe has segments in the six and eight o’clock hours called “Politico Playbook” which features Mike Allen or some other person in editorial there. I don’t think MSNBC could or would do that is there wasn’t a business arrangement of some sort. In short, money is changing hands between Politico and NBC, and it probably isn’t at CBS.

      • We assume that to be the case. But what if it was just a gentleperson’s agreement between two media factions and has not been reported as revenue to the IRS?

  32. Interesting email from a Dem staffer.

    It is titled “Relieved” –


    (link fixed)

  33. Hello all fuzzy I just came back form the board meeting of “The Toxic MEME Group Inc.” (TMG INC)

    They seem to have a great Idea on how to sell this massive defeat for their FEARLESS LEADER!

    It is a ne Idea fresh never before tried…..and sure to scare all the Democrats in MA back into line were they belong!


    TADA…. its fresh its new and Chairman Axelfraud has never tried this one before!

    So now the whole state of MA is R@CIST!

    thought this might tickle you all!

    • no no no – not that again


    • How original! It’s so crazy it just might work.

      • neval, evah again—pleazzzzzzzze.

      • thanks Myiq…the Folks on the Board of TMG Inc. are really excited about this Idea! when it was discussed around the big oval table Rahm E and Donna B actually wet their pants amd giggled with glee….

        I mean this is the first time that an entire state will be referred to as r@cist!

        the other Idea to admit we just F*cked Up was beaten down by Media representatives Keith O. and Mr McTweety!

    • How many states are to be declared racist before they declare that this is a civil war re enactment?

    • After that, they can then get revenge like they’re doing in West Virginia. Completely devastate the state and the environment by destroying the landscape, the rivers, and the living habitat. It’s fun. You make loads of money and kill all the inhabitants at the same time. Win-win.

      • You know, every time I see anything about the mountain top blasting this Admin is allowing to continue there, it reinforces the notion of B0 as a vindictive $OB. It was so obvious during the primary how much scorn he and his team had for voters in West Virginia and Kentucky, and to see that no action is taken there on behalf of the families living downstream from the mining is heartbreaking.

    • Hi fuzzy

  34. I just knew when we had to have that beer summit over MA profs and cops that the big blue MA had gone off the rails and was getting racist.

  35. Welcome to the front page Wonk! 🙂 Great post!

  36. I want to hear what people think here about the statements from Frank and ozero about hcr moving forward. I wonder if the Brown election just let O off the hook. But both Frank and 0 talked about not moving forward on any hc vote until Brown is seated. Are they thinking that is the popular road to take now? Has Frank learned from this vote that he could be in trouble? Is o thinking that hc needs major reworking and do not bring it to a vote now—rework it? Change course? Focus on taxing the banks (he signaled that in his Coakley speech) and/or jobs?

    I am just thinking about this. Sounds like no matter what the Dem leadership may want to do, the MA election has at least registered with other Dem office holders (Webb, Weiner (sp). And then there are all the loose cannons: Baucus, Nelson, Liebermann. Di-Fi is fidgeting here in CA.

  37. To combat the facts being laid out of his failure and his personal toxicity in the polls. He is going to be forced to play the humble poor OBambi routine for a bit to keep the gullible in his faith base entranced so racist MA makes sense to me. Then he can change his poor little Oby face to a tough guy look when giving his next teleprompter session, but face it now who cares.

    • I’d much rather have health care than health insurance.

      • Health Care what do you think this is? Goverment of the people for the people and by the people?

        • HEY YOU

          How are you? Is everything ok. I missed seeing your comments.



      • I’m stealing that line for a bumper sticker.

        Or for a Confluence T-shirt.

    • Hey SOD! Since when has connecting with the average American and their needs been a priority of the Obamacratic Party?

      I mean look people will all be covered and if it costs 25% of their gross income is that to big a price to pay to give Pampers a big old Political Victory?

      • “just give us anything and we’ll declare victory”

        sound familiar?

        • yes al to familiar…this President doesnt just lack coattails he is toxic to down ticket dems!

    • How is it that so few people have heard that message?
      No Lanny, they heard it. They knew it was a lie. They just responded. Didn’t you hear. 🙂

    • If our bill passes, you never have to worry about getting, or losing, health insurance for the rest of your life. How is it that so few people have heard that message?

      Maybe if you listened to the message that voters were sending, Lanny, you’d understand that we got your Killian memo and we put it in the paper shredder.

    • well Lanny, that’s because no one will be able to afford your piece of crap sandwich insurance and “the rest of your life” will be very short.

  38. Wonk you write very interesting and informative posts. Thank you and please write more.

    Is there any thing left of the democratic party? Is it now the obama party? He has moved the headquarters to Chicago. Many life long dems have been told to stay home. Many have left and become independents. I watched Glen Beck by accident as I stopped watching news programs during the lovefest of backtrack. His comments about the difference between progressives and democrats was interesting. It made me think, is there anything left of the party I believed in for almost 50 years. If you are a dem politician and do not go along with backtrack you are threatened. Blind obedience is expected and to hell with the people that voted for them.
    Is there a real democratic party left?



    • Thx, helen. 🙂 Did you ever frontpage about Diebold, btw? I remember myiq asking you to.. I was looking forward to what you would post. I remember listening to Randi Rhodes after Kerry lost ranting about Diebold. She had graphs on her website and there was all that Bev Harris drama. The tinfoil was very shiny and strewn all over the place.

      • Myiq was going to write a post about it for me. I am not a good writer but I can research. He got busy and did not have the time.
        Maybe before the 2010 election the whole thing can be investigated and people made aware of the problems.
        I do think that elections are too important not to honest and if necessary all information about problems should be made known to the voters.



        • I do think that elections are too important not to honest and if necessary all information about problems should be made known to the voters.

          yes, I do too. The MSM treats concerns raised about voter fraud like a nothing burger (except for Fox and ACORN of course), and well let’s just say that after 2008, I don’t trust left blogistan’s “reporting” anymore either. I just want the facts.

  39. Gibbs arguing, with a vengeance and with a stupid grin on his face the whole time, on CNN telling Wolf Blitzer that this is the most transparent White House we’ve ever had. Wolf: What about behind closed doors with HCB? Gibbs, grinning: That’s becuz you said it, Wolf. Where did you get it? Wolf answering calmly that it was a fact in Nebraska (the payoff ); Gibbs still arguing, again, grinning. It was so bizarre I was screaming at the T.V. I don’t know who is the most arrogant – Gibbs or BO.

    • add Kaine a little early not the A team for sure. And Obama with George its not that they won’t change, they can’t they haven’t the talent….

  40. The reason Martha lost is because she flip flopped on healthcare. Plain and simple. That made her lose the base. That’s the large percentage of Dems who stayed home.

    One of the most destructive things these delusional or obot/loyal pundits can do is to not understand that, or even if they do, to spin this otherwise. That’s because if they or other people think the base doesn’t want healthcare reform because it’s big government or any other crap, then they will move further to the right. That will destroy the Democratic party.

    It’s frankly on it’s last legs because they helped a non liberal get into the white house instead of someone the base preferred.

    • And by the way, what the hell does Joan even mean by that statement? What is she reacting to when she says feminists have to take their lumps? Does she mean stop complaining that Martha lost? I must be missing something.

      • It’s a Kool-aid thing. You wouldn’t understand.

      • Yeah, basically. I took it as her lecturing Coakley’s female voters to be big girls and get over it. I don’t remember now the specifics of what she was responding to, but it there was a running theme on MSNBC–Tweety earlier was putting on a show… “I thought there was a real desire for a female candidate after Hillary”

  41. Obama is rapidly desending into the Jimmy Carter Zone!

    • i said he is almost there – and still 3 more yrs to go! Gee what’s next?

    • In Carter’s defense, I think his biggest mistake was choosing to run for Prez in 1976. This country had a humongous load of bad policy outcomes and bad karma waiting for WHATEVER poor sucker became Prez in 1976.

      I say if Reagan had won the GOP nomination in 1976 and then the general election, he would have been as unpopular in 1980 as Carter was in real history.

      • Correction: “was elected Prez in 1976”; of course, he didn’t actually BECOME Prez until Jan. 1977.

        I wish this blog had an edit feature like Wonderland has.

  42. Can someone define what Liberal Democrats stand for please? And the difference between a progressive and a liberal. Perhaps, democrats are confused about what liberal democrats stand for?

    Because it is becoming pretty clear that neither party really stands for traditional Republican or Democratic standards. If you go to Washington, you end up being a mutated hybrid that hates the “others”. Perhaps after Mr. Brown goes to Washington, he too will become “one” with the Washington brainwashing. Maybe they will offer him a souped up brand new pick-up truck to sell his vote?

      • To paraphrase then:

        Progressives believe in people or institutions that increase the size of government as long as it “helps” people, and that usually means they side with the party seen as “Liberal”?

        Liberals are not a political party, but believe in the bigger the government the better?

        I went to Omaha to visit my family last week, and they used to be Democrats who turned Republican because of what Carter did to the economy. I have always been Democrat, and still am.

        We have argued politics for the last 10 years, and now we all agreed. Everyone felt that Hilary should of won, and would have done a better job. They are as unhappy with republicans as I am with democrats. They want the government to stop spending, and stop trying to pass legislation that hurts small business.

        I think most people are really tired of the media trying to pigeonhole everyone as “good” or “bad” according to their professed ideology. Once the finger pointing of “good” and “bad” starts, it seems all order breaks down, and nothing changes in Washington.

        • Wrong.

          Take a reading comprehension course, then come back and see us.

          You are the weakest link.


        • No- liberals believe in *effective* government. There *is* a difference.

          You’d never hear a liberal arguing to drown government in a bathtub.

  43. Over at DUmb:

    In the wake of a crushing Democratic defeat in the Massachusetts Senate race, we find ourselves faced with the one-year anniversary of a spirit-changing day in the history of the United States, the inauguration of President Barack Obama. This odd confluence of events provides an opening for a very timely warning: It is time to remember who your friends are, Mr. President.

    Your friends are not the suits on Wall Street, the same ones who fooled Timothy Geithner for years. Your friends are not the timid centrists, who Rahm Emanuel coddles. Your friends are not the giants of the mortgage industry, who fought you tooth and nail to keep the foreclosure crisis out of the courts. Your friend is not George W. Bush, whose crimes you continue to conceal.

    Your friends are the progressives across this country, who, when you asked for their faith and inspired them with beautiful words, placed you on their shoulders and carried you to a historic victory.

    The progressive movement needs results – we’re too smart to be placated and spun. We’re too cynical – and too determined – to compromise. And, soon, we’ll be too jaded to believe that Democrats are anything but limp windsocks, pointing whichever way the wind blows.

    Some have already walked away, according to a recent Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll, which states that 45 percent of Democrats are not likely to vote in the 2010 election.

    We know that, in your heart, you’re one of us. Your heart is the element you seem to have forgotten, the element we miss. You used to wear it on your sleeve; we could hear it pounding in your chest when you spoke.

    (h/t Cannonfire)

  44. Gibbs says today …”The president didn’t expect — I would certainly put myself in that category — not expecting to lose that Senate race,” Gibbs told reporters in his daily briefing. “There’s no doubt we are frustrated by that.

    Obama says to George yes of course I knew the race was lost over a week ago, not to mention ya know Brown and I were hired by the same people….snore

    • oh good god, I hope gibbsy isn’t planning on doing a nude centerfold! excuse me while I clean my brain with extra strength clorox….

  45. No surprise the Dem establishment and corporate media want to blame a woman for loosing the election rather than look at how unpopular their strong arm politics and policies are. I don’t think these guys and the women who apologize for them and run around admiring the emperors new suit realize how misogynist they appear to everyone else. If the Dems want to win and lead the country they are going to have to purge these guys. Same with media, if they want people to actually watch their content they are going to have to get real.

    I don’t usually watch MSNBC but I did enjoy watching their shocked faces last night. I wish I TIVOed it as it’s the most entertaining thing I’ve seen in a long time.

    • I certainly don’t intend to vote for them. But then, I’m emigrating, so I’ll only be able to vote in the national elections.

  46. Did anyone else get an email today from Democracy for America?

    “Last night, Democrats lost Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat in a bitter special election. This is already a sad day for all of us who loved Ted Kennedy. But to make it even worse, conservative Democrats and Washington talking heads are claiming that the loss happened because Congress was “too far to the left.”

    They’re wrong again — and we can prove it.

    We had Research 2000 poll voters immediately after the Election ended: Even Scott Brown voters want Democrats to be bolder and they want healthcare reform that includes a public option.

    You read that right. By a margin of three-to-two, former Obama voters who voted for Republican Scott Brown yesterday said the Senate healthcare bill “doesn’t go far enough.” Six-to-one Obama voters who stayed home agreed. And to top it off, 80% of all voters still want the choice of a public option in the bill. “

    • Let me check my spam folder.

    • well that definitely puts this in the wake up and smell the turpintine coloumn!

      Will Pelosi Reid Obama listen?

    • Well, DUH again. So WTF are the Dems gonna do? And they expect we’ll come back to the fold just because they got 2 brain cells to work together now and see most voters want a public option, etc.?


  47. emily”s d-list lost me when they supported women who turned their backs on Hillary Clinton and fell head over teakettle for the false prophet and his lies.

    • Hopefully Emily’s List is learning some lessons, too.

      On the flipside: Emily’s List also supported Coakley, and Coakley didn’t turn her back on Hillary.

      • She just turned her back on us with her health care flip flop. Or well, probably pushed into it if she wanted blood money, er I mean Dem party funding.

        • This is true. That’s why my question is:

          When will the Activist Left work together to support Women when they Make Good in Politics?

          If there had been enough activist support for Coakley on the left when she was doing the right thing saying she would vote against Obamacare, she would have had the money she needed and not have to depend on the Democratic machine. Scott Brown would have never won.

  48. When I think of Obama, I often think of Dan Walker, Democratic governor of Illinois from 1972-1976. I recall my McGovern liberal parents enthusiastically voting for him, but my dad grumbling in 1976, “What a lightweight he turned out to be.” Walker lost the 1976 Democratic primary and the statehouse to the Democrats for a generation.

    • I’m pretty sure I voted for Richard Ogilvie, Walker’s opponent, in that election. Walker not only turned out to be a lightweight, he turned out to be a crook–ending up in jail. Good ol’ Illinois politics.

  49. Good point, WtV. I think you’re right; she did play it stupid based on “being in” with the New Democrats, and it didn’t work in her favor. That doesn’t exactly speak volumes about her, though, does it? It paints her with the same brush as the New Democrats, and maybe that’s how she would have governed. We’ll never know, of course. FTR, I supported her based solely on gender, but I can’t say I’m unhappy she lost. Not happy/not unhappy. It is what it is.

    I think what happened in MA last night, and what’s going to happen this November, is that people are embracing chaos as a political strategy. The mentality is: “If politicians are going to continue to be corrupt, arrogant assholes on both sides of the aisle, well then, we’ll just work to fuck up everything.” The strategy is not a bad one; if they don’t know why you do what you do, they can’t figure out how to dupe you.

    • Ooooh, I like that… the Chaos Party. Sign me up!

    • I’ve actually heard average rank-and-file people say that on both sides of the aisle. The political junkies like us tend to be more targeted, but a lot of everyday folks just say they they plan to start throwing out whoever seems clueless and BOUGHT, from either party.

      People are becoming less big-issue-focused, and more representation-focused. They want to know who is going to LISTEN, who is going to jump when the people say jump, rather than when the party bosses or the big donors say jump.

  50. Whoa. Cindy McCain joins the public protest in favor of marriage equality….


    • Alright Cindy! I liked her when her hubby was running. I think Meghan seems sweet too.

      It’s too bad the GOP doesn’t have more gals running for office. I think alot of them are way smarter than their male GOP counterparts for the most part.

  51. Okay, I’ve cruised around a lot of blogs today (even went into the big orange sewer) and I have come to a conclusion:

    VA was a canary in the coal mine. NJ was a canary in the coal mine. MA was one HUGE MOTHERF**KING canary in the coal mine.

    And the Democratic Party is not going to get a clue until they are chin deep and suffocating in dead canaries, with flashfires burning in the tunnels all around them.

    Gird up. This is going to take awhile. Evidently more cans of whoop-ass will need opening.

    • I’m just waiting for them to blame it on the cell phone reception.

      “Can you hear me now?… How about now?”

    • LMAO! You are not alone, WMCB. I used to be a big DK lurker for about four years (which I do also do here–lurk, that is). I lost touch when the 2008 election showed me exactly what Dems were all about. I stopped by yesterday just to see the freak out. Stopped by again today. Have not been disappointed. They’re so predictable!

  52. New thread up top

  53. It occurs to me that good advisers are important, but more important is who they advise. That is why every democrat in the nation should have shuddered when Obama said he would make up for his lack of experience by hiring smarter people to tell him what to do.
    It reminds me of when Dubya said the same thing and Ari the liar asked “do you really want your president to be the smartest person in the room”?

    Hell yes I do, and I am starting to think Obama is just real good are looking smart but is actually hovering around 115 for IQ.
    Begal has become a real disapointment. as have all the ex Clinton folks who looked so much smarter when working for a Clinton.

  54. Nice piece, Wonk. Great illustration too.

  55. Disgusted by this:

    “Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) said late Tuesday that much of the Democrats’ loss in Massachusetts should be chalked up to their candidate, Martha Coakley.

    Wasserman Schultz, in some of the most direct on-the-record comments blaming Coakley, noted Democrats have a good special election history and laid the blame at the feet of Coakley.”


  56. I completely agree with Alexander Cockburn who writes that the Coakley loss was a richly deserved humiliation.

    It was A richly deserved setback for the Dems and esp. for the grandstanding prosecutor Oakley whose career took off after the prominent Louise Woodward trial.

    A. Cockburn writes:
    “A final note on Coakley. She rose to political prominence by peculiarly vicious grandstanding as a prosecutor, winning a conviction of 19-year old child minder Louise Woodward for shaking a baby to death. An outraged judge later freed Woodward, reducing her sentence to less than a year of time served. Then Coakley went after headlines in child abuse cases. Innocent people are still rotting in prison as a consequence of Coakley’s misuse of her office. For this alone, regardless of the setback the Democrats richly deserved, I rejoice in her humiliation.”


    ITA, Mr. Cockburn.

    I remember the Woodward case v. well and watched it on TV. Thanks goodness for the decent judge who freed Woodward. Later even the medial expert witness for the prosecution reversed his opinion and agreed with the defense. There had always been plenty of reasonable doubt throughout and thanks to the judge the nineteen-year old au pair did not have to rot in prison as other innocent people are doing right now thanks to Oakley.

  57. Wonk! Congratulations! Great job!

    It’s unfortunate, but the meme that will stick after everything else is gone, is women can’t win. Despite the stupid fauxrage, I’m glad Coakley went to Driscoll’s inauguration, because she’s always been about helping and promoting women in politics.

    • I disagree, it’s not that they cannot win but that the Democratic Party imv dose not want them to win. The Party has is running stealth even fraudulent campaigns, withheld so called vaunted Party political support, stimulated the gullible Progs to run juvenile mommy complex narratives, so they don’t win Think, since when was knowing a baseball players team the litmus test that determined the competence of a candidate vs what it is, a silly mistake. So Joan stuff those big girl panties down your. Coakley did not need to lose in Mass she is absolutely for what ever reason the victim of the Obama


      Political machine either through incompetence or intent but they not she lost that seat.

      • It amounts to the same thing. They don’t want women to win, so they torpedo them, the meme that gets out there is women are losers. And lots of voters are pragmatists, they don’t want to waste their vote. This meme is already being used against Gillibrand–we need to retain that seat so we need to get rid of her.

  58. Go Wonk! I’ve always enjoyed your comments and look forward to reading more of your front page posts.

  59. what year was it when Clinton said “the era of big government is over”?
    Some democrats do not think “the bigger the better”. jayzz might very well be a democrat. Why drive him away until you know for sure?

  60. Cindy McCain, Herbert Hoover’s grandaughter (on FOX) and Florida State Rep. Ros-Lehtinen all have recently spoken out in favor of gay rights, repealing DADT and DOMA. AND they are all Republicans and there are others! Now wouldn’t it be interesting if Republicans rejected the evangelical wing and returned to their roots of individual and states rights by seeking the end of discrimination against our community. I’m hearing more and more of this as I watch Democrats afraid to go there. Obama is certainly not going to do it although he may speechify about it. The Republicans could shock everybody if they hijacked that issue. The party of Lincoln you know..

    • I saw that over at egalia’s site.

      First — hat’s off to Cindy McCain! That is awesome.

      Second — perfect timing for the GOP. The LGBT is mad as heck at being thrown under the bus and the GOP is courting their votes.

      I read somewhere that Greta on Fox & Palin both said not to blame Coakley for the MA loss. They certainly are more outspoken now about sexism. If only they would disavow the Limbaugh “feminazi”-hate group.

  61. Great post, Wonk.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: