Saturday, March 30, 2013

The problem with many of the Red States if 'values.' Family values by GOP candidates provides a faux understanding of what is important in elections.

Some of these Democrats are in trouble. I think Baucus is one of them. They are in trouble because they have A ratings with the NRA. They'll receive primary challenges.

Six-term incumbent Montana Democrat Max Baucus was re-elected with 73% of the vote in 2008. He will be 72 years old in 2014. Baucus will seek re-election to a seventh term. Republican state Representative Champ Edmunds will challenge Baucus. Former state Senator Corey Stapleton has also announced his candidacy. A poll by Public Policy Polling published on February 19 shows Baucus leading Stapleton by 45% to 38% and Edmunds by 47% to 37%.

It is all too easy to choice 'the nice man' for his devotion to family. It is more difficult to chose the man or woman with the most ambition for the outcomes of the state they are seeking to represent. If Democrats provide real insight to the economic upticks for states with and without federal dollars, it will make a huge difference in the way they are valued as candidates.

The obvious campaign for Senator Baucus is to look to the success of Senator Tester in his run for the Senate. He was disfavored at one time. But, the gun issue is a real issue and I would suggest all candidates to focus on building economic strengths in order to bring about changes to gun laws. If the GOP can pull strings through cartoonishness about gun rights, there is no real dialogue happening to bring about good decisions by the electorate.

This is a good place to begin for Montana. It has the "W"rong ideas about guns and the harm they actually do cause in their society.


Federal Court Rejects Montana Effort to Evade Federal Gun Laws (click here)

Sep 30, 2010
Washington, D.C. – Federal district court Judge Donald Molloy late yesterday threw out a lawsuit brought by the Second Amendment Foundation and other “gun rights” groups in support of Montana’s “Firearms Freedom Act,” one of a number of controversial state laws that attempt to exempt guns made in that state from federal gun laws.

The judge agreed with a brief filed by the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, joined by a coalition of Montana and national gun violence prevention, law enforcement, and domestic violence groups, arguing that the Montana law is unconstitutional.

“We are pleased that the court rejected this dangerous, misguided and unconstitutional law,” said Paul Helmke, President of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “It is already far too easy for dangerous people to get deadly weapons.  There is no reason for Montana or other states to allow gun sales without the Brady background checks that help keep guns away from criminals.”...

This lawsuit is a waste of money. I am quite confident every voter in Montana will come to understand their state is wayward on these issues.

There are many organizations across the USA to prevent gun violence. The Brady Campaign is one, Mayor Bloomberg has his approach, Sandy Hook Promise is another and the Giffords-Kelly organization, "Americans for Responsible Solutions" is another. They all have information for candidates that want to make a change in the gun violence in the USA. I am quite confident they will endorse WITH FACTS any candidate that approaches them with intentions to stop gun violence and make the USA and their states safer.

I have always stated, SSI and Medicare is the baseline economy of the USA. When it comes to Social Security and Medicare, believe in this:

Posted: Mar 27, 2013 8:49 PM by MTN News
MISSOULA - While corporate CEOs (click here) are pressuring Congress to cut Social Security and Medicare as part of a so-called "Grand Bargain" to reduce the debt, Montana small business owners say that cuts to Social Security and Medicare would be devastating to small businesses across the state.

On March 27, 2013, the Montana Small Business Alliance released a new report from the Main Street Alliance and Social Security Works, Business is (Baby) Booming, analyzing the important role Social Security and Medicare play in Montana's economy, both strengthening the retirement security of small business owners themselves, and fueling consumer demand on Main Street....

..."I'm counting on the benefits I've earned through Social Security and Medicare for my retirement," said Tim Christensen owner of Vino Per Tutti in Bozeman. "We've put all of our savings into our business. If Congress cuts Social Security and Medicare, I don't know how I'll be able to afford to retire."

In addition to undermining the retirement security of small business owners themselves, cuts to Social Security and Medicare would hurt small businesses at the cash register by weakening the economy and depressing consumer demand, according to the report.

Even a 3-percent cut in Social Security benefits would take $72.1 million out of Montana's economy. A similar cut to Medicare, meanwhile, would cost Montana's economy $37.4 million....

Now, with that reality, one has to ask what do Republicans think they are doing by promoting such wayward ideas?

I've heard all the arguments and I suppose if there were cuts to benefits or postponement of retirement and chained-cpi all would be right with the world. I don't think so. If the USA is going to rely forever on Wall Street for their economic vitality without growing local economies with good paying jobs, even the cuts now won't matter in the future with the next economic crash or recession or bailout. 

Sustainable economies that grow and provide options for our young people is where we should be looking. People don't want to have babies if life is hard. Unless of course a 12 year old can collect welfare for three years.

The problem in Montana is a lack of infusion of young people into the economy to grow communities and local economies. Montana has to look to the future to provide incentives to bring younger people to love Montana and seek to build economic futures.

How can anyone say what the future treasuries of the USA is going to look like with an ENTIRE GENERATION out of work?

One-term incumbent Nebraska Republican Mike Johanns was elected with 58% of the vote in 2008. He will not seek a second term. Potential Republican candidates to succeed him include Governor Dave Heineman(who will be term-limited as governor), Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, and perhaps former state Treasurer Shane Osborn.

Heineman is a fairly popular governor. He may have the best shot at this thing. He is a Republican.

video

He has some liabilities. He has taken the easy road for expanding the Nebraska potential. He went to China. China is still working through human rights issues with no real end in sight. There is problem with currencies between the USA and China.

With such depth of investment the state risks devaluing it's bonds if China takes a dip.

Every state needs to look to how diverse their economy is and will be in the future. It is the only way to protect from economic collapse.

Governor Heineman did tax relief in Montana. But, he didn't do Wall Street tax relief. He focused on the Middle Class. Nice.

April 10, 2012, 9:30 a.m. CT

Gov. Heineman Signs Middle Class Tax Relief for Hard-Working Nebraskans (click here)

He sought to increase the economy through more circulating money. Of course that returns to the states through sales tax and the like. Increased employment due to more circulating currency due to tax cuts increases the tax base.

He signed abortion legislation to limit it to before 20 weeks. That is reasonable if that is what his state wants. I think it still challenges Roe v Wade and might ultimately fail if it does not allow for a woman's doctor to terminate a pregnancy to save her life. I haven't read the Montana law.

One-term incumbent New Hampshire Democrat Jeanne Shaheen was elected with 52% of the vote in 2008. She will be 67 years old in 2014. At the end of 2011 Shaheen had the lowest amount of campaign funds out of any senator up for re-election in 2014, leading some to believe she would not defend her seat, but her office has confirmed that she will run for re-election. Polling by PPP in November 2012 found her leading former Senator John E. Sununu by 53% to 42%.


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Everyone knows Sununu has been out in the Right Wing media chronically because he is going to ask for money. Someone needs to do some fund raising to insure Senator Shaheen a clear victory. She has been one of the women of the Senate at the forefront of protecting women's rights. Everyone knows Sununu can't hold a candle to her so we have to insure her re-election. We are lucky to have her in the US Senate.

This is Senator Shaheen's office in Manchester, New Hampshire. Some needs to contact them and remind them they need to do some fundraising. Fundraising is a part of being a Senator.

Senator Jenne Shaheen
Manchester, NH Office
1589 Elm Street
Manchester, NH 03101
(603) 647-7500

The New Jersey races are sort of infamous by now, right? On one hand there is the governor's race with a little known Democrat with the right ideas for New Jersey and a well respected Republican governor. But, the Senate race is interesting. We have the Hero Mayor of Newark making his bid. It would be really nice if a minority Senator was elected. 

On February 14, 2013, Lautenberg announced that he would not be a candidate for reelection. Newark Mayor Cory Booker has announced that he will run for the seat. Congressman Frank Pallone has said that he would consider running if Lautenberg decided not to seek re-election. State Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver is also a possible Democratic candidate. Potential Republican candidates include Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno, state Assemblyman Jay Webber, state Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick, and state Senator Joe Kyrillos.

Now, here is a real kicker. All the other states with Republican governors run away from extended polling days and times. What the heck does Christie think he is doing by bucking the party? Someone is on the wrong trajectory here and I don't believe it is Governor Christi. The man is fearless.
Senate panel approves bill to allow early voting in N.J. (click here)
By Matt Friedman/The Star-Ledger 
on March 04, 2013 at 4:55 PM, updated March 04, 2013 at 4:57 PM




...The Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee voted 8-5 to approve the bill (S2364), which would allow voters to cast ballots at designated polling locations beginning 15 days before the primary and general elections. They would have until the Sunday before Election Day to vote early.
“As legislators we understand that there are few rights that are more important than a citizen’s participation in democracy,” said state Sen. Nia Gill (D-Essex), the bill’s primes sponsor. “If we can travel around the world to promote democracy and the right to vote we must be willing to invest in the infrastructure here at home to make sure we have the most effective, efficient and secure voting access possible.”
The polling places would be open seven days a week: From 10am to 8pm on Mondays through Saturdays, and from 10am to 6pm on Sundays....

It sounds as though Pallone has federal aspirations. Sort of. He is looking forward to beach nourishment of the Jersey Shore, too.

13:26, 1 March, 2013
YEREVAN, MARCH 1, ARMENPRESS:  Congressional (click here) Armenian Caucus Co-Chairman Frank Pallone commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Azerbaijani pogroms against the Armenian population of the Azerbaijani city of Sumgait, and condemned the ongoing atmosphere of violence and intimidation being fostered by the government of President Ilham Aliyev, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) informed Armenpress....

Assemblyman Robert Andrzejczak (click here) is pinned by Assembly Speaker Sheila Y. Oliver at his swearing-in ceremony Thursday at the Statehouse.

Assemblywoman Oliver is the Speaker. She also passed legislation to commemorate the state's relationship with Israel. In doing so the state reaffirms investments to Israel. She is probably an excellent candidate for the US Senate.

Kim Guadagno is a Republican hopeful. She was Lieutenant Governor to Christi and is now Secretary of State to the governor. She has excellent credentials. If she is a moderate the people will like her, but, the minority communities in New Jersey are strong. They might want a minority Senator.


It is nice she can announce these programs, but, the New Jersey legislator first had to pass them. Assemblywoman Oliver may know more about the legislation then the Lt. Governor did actually.

By Matt Friedman/The Star-Ledger 
on March 21, 2013 at 4:02 PM, updated March 21, 2013 at 4:39 PM
...“The people of New Jersey (click here) should know that Obamacare is starting to yield its first fruits for everyone in New Jersey,” said Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-Morris). “And unfortunately the fruits are a bushel full of rotten apples.”

Unless Mr. Webber has an attitude change I don't think he is going far. This is a good time to mention MINI-MEDICAL plans that received waivers when they should not have. That is what Student Health Plans are. They are mini-medical plans that take your money without giving benefits.

This is United Health Care justifying their lousy insurance. A lot of sports departments require some proof of insurance for participants. This is it. Then they rely on the Health Department on campus to provide the care students need. This is more or LESS a legal document. They don't really provide care.

Why Student Health Insurance May Cost Less (click here)

Student health insurance often is less expensive than traditional health insurance programs for reasons that include:
  • Many Student Health Centers provide deep discounts if care is provided on campus. For this reason, student health insurance plans don’t need to be as comprehensive as traditional plans.
  • When students complete their education, they are no longer eligible for student health insurance, which means that most participants are only enrolled for a limited, relatively short period of time. Actuaries point out that the longer a person stays enrolled in a particular health insurance pool, the more health care he or she will require.
  • College students are younger and typically healthier than the general population, resulting in reduced risk for the insurer. Insurance rates typically reflect that reduced risk.
The advantages of student health insurance make them an affordable, quality alternative to more expensive, more comprehensive traditional plans.

Example:

Legal but inadequate (click here)
Judith Goss, 48, of Macomb, Mich., believed that the Cigna plan she obtained through her job at the Talbots retail chain was “some type of insurance that would cover something.” When the store she worked at closed in January 2011, she even paid $65 a month to keep the coverage through COBRA.

“I was aware that it wasn’t a great plan, but I wasn’t concerned because I wasn’t sick,” she says. But in July 2011 she was diagnosed with breast cancer, at which point the policy’s annual limits of $1,000 a year for outpatient treatment and $2,000 for hospitalization became a huge problem. Facing a $30,000 hospital bill, she delayed treatment. “Finally my surgeon said, ‘Judy, you can’t wait anymore.’ While I was waiting my tumor became larger. It was 3 centimeters when they found it and 9 centimeters when they took it out.” After a double mastectomy, radiation treatments, and reconstructive surgery, Goss is taking the drug tamoxifen to prevent recurrence....


Bramnick is a Republican with potential, but, he is a bit of a late bloomer. He is an attorney by profession, has been in government for awhile, but, wasn't really noteworthy until recent years in the New Jersey Assembly. He is affectionately called "The Funniest Lawyer in New Jersey."

Bramnick (click here) has been honored with the 2011 Legislator of the Year award from the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, the 2011 Law and Justice Distinguished Achievement Award from Rider University, the Outstanding Legislator of the Year award from the NJ Society for Environmental & Economic Development, the Legislator of the Year award from the Food Council Committee for Good Government, the 2010 Government Leadership Award from the Advocates for New Jersey History, the 2009 Spirit of the YMCA Award, and the “Guardian of Small Business” Award from the National Federation of Independent Businesses. He was inducted into the Plainfield High School Hall of Fame’s Class of 2011.

This is interesting. There are some real charges of exploitative no-bid contracts within the Sandy recovery in New Jersey. It is the only place I have seen Kyrillos name.

..."I'm just a little confused (click here) because Mr. Barbour has stated that he reached out to Governor Christie and recommended that they hire you," Buono said.

Earlier Republican state Sen. Joseph M. Kyrillos Jr. objected when Buono said, "It appears the governor gave a no-bid contract to a politically connected firm that has charged double the rates."

"Is this a campaign rally?" Kyrillos asked.

This was the first hearing in a series launched by majority Democrats, who said they want a better explanation of how the contract came into place.

Kyrillos said critics should recall the chaos that ensued in the days after the storm....

State Senator Buono is the Democratic candidate for Governor against Chris Christie. It will be a difficult battle for her. Evidently, she has a real issue here with the Sandy clean up, but, if I may?

Unfortunately, governments at all levels fall into these traps with 'ready to go' companies when they over pay for the services provided. 

With this reality, we enter into the idea that less 'ready to go in an instant companies' cannot compete and the governments are never relieved of the burden of paying far more than the services are worth. There are several of these outfits. This is one of them.

...This isn't the first time Perkins has had to defend his company's practices.

AshBritt had a debris removal contract worth more than $500 million in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and the company's work attracted attention from FEMA and Capitol Hill. In May 2006, the House of Representatives' Committee on Government Reform focused on the deal in its evaluation of the contracting system, and Perkins testified before the panel.

The Christie administration renewed its defense of the AshBritt contract hours before the hearing began when his office issued a statement titled, "The Christie Administration Has Overseen a Swift and Efficient Cleanup Effort."...

These companies focus on burgeoning disaster and FOLLOW government money. Monies through the Army Corp, the Interior Department and so on. They follow where the spending for government projects are, charge a lot and undercut quality. They are ruthless and corrupt. And lie like rugs.

Another company is AMEC. AMEC is a global outfit with substandard and corrupt practices. Halliburton is another one. Iraq. 

But, these guys PLAN to over charge for their work. I realize this is vital work and in this instance so did Governor Christi. The point is, it is not unusual for governments to accept these companies in a heartbeat to carry out work to screaming constituents.

These companies are predatory and I would really like to see this issue calm down and have the NJ AG office actually prosecute for exploitative practices. That is what I would like to see. If Senator Buono wants a real winning argument be the one that leads the charge against this practice. The practice is systemic. It is predatory and it needs people to resolve the problem.

You know, the storm has passed by the time these fellas show up. We don't need to have them take advantage of an already disaster event on any state or local economy. So if they had a half billion dollar contract, they really only deserved to be paid a quarter billion. Exploitative practices of this nature are litigable.

NEW JERSEY CITIZENS WERE TAKEN ADVANTAGE OFF IN THEIR TIME OF NEED. That isn't litigable? I do believe so.

Just think about it for a minute. How much investment could New Jersey make with a quarter billion into companies in the State of New Jersey to be ON CALL for disaster relief and otherwise?

A lot and the companies would already know the NJ Statues that require quality work.

The one true way to eliminate these exploitative practices is for the state governments to have READY TO GO IN AN INSTANT companies on the books. Put out bids for "On Call" contracts with fixed costs in advance. Contractors will take them. They will probably ask for a 'RETAINER,' but, it would provide for local companies to increase their equipment purchases in case they are needed. That does two things. It increases the value and worth of the companies and gives peace of mind to governments. It is a great idea. I have watched this mess for far too long and someone needs to take the bull by the horns. Seriously. This should not simply be a mud slinging contest, it is far too upsetting and this is a real problem to just use it for political purposes.

But, Kyrillos doesn't really have a chance unless everyone values his smile over his involvement in policies and government.

Man there are a lot of issues and 36 Senate seat. I am going to take a break and restart tomorrow. There is the military mess and "The Sequester" I want to briefly review, too.

Until tomorrow.







"She can pick winners."

video

...Sarah Palin launched into the 2014 election cycle yesterday through a new video entitled “Loaded for Bear” released by SarahPAC. The ad points out that there are 35 U.S. Senate seats and 36 governors races conservatives will be fighting for in 2014. She was effective in 2010 and 2012 at helping to knock off establishment candidates. It will be interesting to see if she will bring as much clout in 2014....

At stake Gerrymandering, , real priorities of the people, unions, the Middle Class, the American Dream, the promise of upward movement, land use, agriculture, biotic content, tourism, the economy and the future of our children.

There are resources at the fingertips of every Democratic candidate to make the argument things can be better with better infrastructure, the protection of parks and wildlands, increased minimum wage to bring better opportunities for labor and training. Use the resources available to them make the argument for local economies, their improvement and ADVANCEMENT.

Light red: Term-limited Republican
Dark red: Incumbent Republican
Light blue: Term-limited or Retiring Democrat
Dark blue: Incumbent Democrat
Green: Incumbent Independent
Light Gray: no election

Resource Example: Arts, Recreation, & Travel: Travel and Tourism STATISTICS (click here)

1261 - Top States and Cities Visited by Overseas Travelers - Bringing foreign dollars into the USA is a win/win for any city or state. Make it viable where it is not now and make it better where is currently exists.

The components of tourism begins with "The Arts." These are the universities, their auditoriums, outreach to the public and the public concert halls, operas, museums and "Artist Street Fairs."

Arts Activities (click here)

1234 - Performing Arts--Selected Data

The 2020 CENSUS IS COMING IN SOME GOVERNORSHIPS IN 2016, WHY NOT BEGIN LAYING THE GROUND WORK NOW?

Example: Visitors Statistics (click here)

  • Total Domestic & Overseas Visitors to Boston & Cambridge in 2012: 22.5 M
  • Total Domestic & Overseas Visitors (including day trippers) to Metropolitan Statistical Area in 2012: 28.4 M
  • Estimated number of Overseas Visitors to Boston & Cambridge in 2012: 1,460,000 
  • -  Business: 517,000
  •  

  • -  Leisure: 899,000
  • Total of $8.6 billion in spending impact from domestic and international visitors
  • The GBCVB projects a 4% growth in the number of total visitors in 2013, estimated at 23.4 M
  • Museums and Attractions: In 2012 there were 9.8 M visitors at major Boston & Cambridge museums and attractions
    Sources: Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism, Business Travel News, Pinnacle Advisory Group, US Dept. of Commerce
    Flight Statistics (2012)

    • Total Flights: 354,869 (down 3.8%)
    • Total Airport Passengers: 29.3 M (up 1.4%)
    • Total Domestic Passengers: 24,865,866 (up 0.1%)
    • Total International Passengers: 4,350,597 (up 9.8%)
    US House of Representatives elections are every two years.

    These are the Senate races of 2014. Turn the red to blue. The Senate campaigns can help carry the Governor's seats by pointing to economic successes under a popular Democratic President. This is the US Senate Class of 2008, the year of the Global Economic Collapse and President Obama's election. The Democrats have moved this country forward while facing incredible odds. In the year 2014 the Republicans are going to have to run both in the House, Senate and Governorships on their role in improving the USA economy and advancing the well being of their citizens and states. The US House has already conceded the National Debt is not as urgent as they have made it out to be. What's the problem?

    Kindly don't forget, Republicans OUTSOURCE their policies to ALEC (click here). States Rights is about the uniqueness of the state, it's economy, it's culture and people. When a Republican draws on outside corporate sources to write policy they are not competent to lead.


    Senate Seats up for election:
      Democratic incumbent
      Retiring Democrat
      Republican incumbent
      Retiring Republican
      Special election pending
      No election

    Three-term incumbent Republican Jeff Sessions of Alabama was re-elected with 63% of the vote in 2008. He will be 67 years old in 2014.

    Begich, a one term Democratic incumbent from Alaska. will be 52 years old in 2014 and intends to seek re-election to a second term


    Two-term incumbent Democrat Mark Pryor of Arkansas was re-elected with 80% of the vote without Republican opposition in 2008. He will be 51 years old in 2014. He is planning on running for a third term.

    One-term incumbent Democrat Mark Udall of Colorado was elected with 53% of the vote in 2008. Additional polling conducted by Public Policy Polling June 14–17, 2012, of 799 Colorado voters showed Udall with leads against former Governor Bill Owens (47–43), 2010, Republican nominee for Senate Ken Buck (50–35), former Lieutenant Governor Jane Norton (48–38) (Jane Norton is backed by Senator Kelly Ayote), former Congressman Tom Tancredo (49–39), Congressman Doug Lamborn (49–36), Congressman Mike Coffman (48–39), and state Attorney General John Suthers (48–38).

    Democrat Chris Coons of Delaware defeated Tea Party activist Christine O'Donnell.

    ...Indeed, national Democrats (click here) are gearing up for a difficult midterm election in which they will have to defend 20 of the 33 Senate seats up for grabs in order to maintain their upper-chamber majority. And actually expanding that majority in the sixth year of President Obama’s term will fall somewhere between difficult and nearly impossible....

    Saxby Chambliss of Georgia is leaving his 2008 victory with 57% of the vote. There are a laundry list of candidates for the nomination, including Herman Cain. But, the Democrats are hard pressed to be optimistic.

    Many Democrats are openly rooting for Broun (who has signaled that he will announce his candidacy later this week) to make it out of the GOP primary in hopes that the 10th District lawmaker will continue his penchant for making the kind of contentious remarks that generate national headlines.

    How is anything going to change if the Democrats don't try? I would think if Democrats are cheering for Broun, it is because there is no one else to cheer for. I am confident there is a Democrat in Georgia that can match Broun in values and policy that is more discouraged then he or she should be.

    Hawaii's new appointed Senator will have to pass muster this year, Former Lt. Governor, Brian Schatz. Inouye was re-elected in 2010 with 72 percent of the vote.

    Three-term incumbent of Illinois and Senate Majority Whip Democrat Dick Durbin was re-elected with 68% of the vote in 2008. Durbin plans to seek a fourth term.

    Five-term incumbent Democrat from Iowa Tom Harkin was re-elected with 63% of the vote in 2008. He will be 74 years old in 2014. Harkin will not run for re-election.

    There are three candidates, one declared and two undeclared:

    Declared

    Braley is young and needed in the USA House. This is a great opporunity for him, but, Iowa cannot ignore the desperate need of the USA for alternative energies from an proven BUSINESSMAN. I think we need a sincere nomination primary in Iowa.

    On February 7, 2013, Braley announced that he would be running for the Democratic nomination for the 2014 United States Senate election in Iowa.

    Undeclared

    Chester John "Chet" Culver was the 41st Governor of Iowa, from 2007 to 2011. He was also elected as the Federal Liaison for the Democratic Governors Association for 2008-2009. He founded the Chet Culver Group, an energy sector consulting firm, in 2011.

    With his deep experience (click here) in fields such as renewable energy and infrastructure, Culver formed The Chet Culver Group to work with individuals and public and private sector entities to provide strategic consulting, cut through red tape and promote cutting-edge ideas that will move the country forward.

    As past Chairman of the Governors Wind Energy Coalition and Governors Biofuels Coalition, Culver understands it is critical to work across party lines to address pressing challenges facing our country. 


    David J. Skorton presently serves as the 12th president of Cornell University, a position he has held since 2006.

    Three-term incumbent of Kansas Republican Pat Roberts was re-elected with 60% of the vote in 2008. He will be 78 years old in 2014. Roberts plans to seek a fourth term and is already raising funds for his campaign.

    Here again, the Democrats have absolutely no one to challenge Pat Roberts. Why? Three terms is a long time, 18 years, an entire generation. The exact same entire generation left out in the cold by past Republican administrations and are unemployed or underemployed. Democratic young people don't exist in Kansas?

    Young Democrats in Kansas need to start to build a career by starting Political Action Committees and seeking donations for their non-profit. Just do it.

    Five-term incumbent of Kentucky and Senate Minority Leader Republican Mitch McConnell was re-elected with 53% of the vote in 2008. He will be 72 years old in 2014. McConnell will seek re-election to a sixth term and is already beginning to prepare for his campaign by hiring key staffers and building a fundraising operation.

    Six terms in office. Wow. That is two generations in Kentucky that he has effected through obstruction and bad policy. This election has to somewhat be about McConnell's disdain for democracy. This is the best year Democrats have had to defeat an incumbent that has done little to nothing for the country during his latest term in office. The electorate should not make that mistake again.


    McConnell very unpopular, but leads potential foes (click here)

    December 11, 2012

    Raleigh, N.C. – Mitch McConnell is the most unpopular Senator in the country. Only 37% of Kentucky voters approve of him to 55% disapprove. Both in terms of raw disapproval (55%) and net approval (-18) McConnell has the worst numbers of any of his peers, taking that mantle from Nebraska's Ben Nelson. McConnell is predictably very unpopular with Democrats (23/73). But his numbers are almost as bad with independents (33/58) and even with Republicans he's well below the 70-80% approval range you would usually expect for a Senator within their own party (59/28)...

    This is from last year and his approval rating has increased somewhat. The Kentucky economy is still lagging. Some of this has to do with the fact The Farm Bill was only recently passed. There is also a problem with milk production and the price supports to farmers. But, retailers are complaining, too. 

     by James Carroll
    ...Only 37 percent of Kentuckians (click here) surveyed approved of the job McConnell was doing in the Senate, compared to 55 percent who disapproved – the lowest approval rating among U.S. senators, PPP said....

    McConnell's voting record that has cost Kentucky any up tick in economic improvement in his third term in office has to be scrutinized. This is not just nonsense, it is about real change and leaving Kentucky behind. President Obama's economic packages were good. The American Jobs Act would have helped enormously.

    FRANKFORT, Ky. (Oct. 24, 2012)

    Kentucky Retail Federation reports responses from annual membership survey

    ...“This is clearly the most important question (click here) and reflects that Kentucky retailers aren’t optimistic about what this year means to them,” said Laura Leigh Goins, vice president of communications and member relations. “We hear a great deal about sales figures, but without considering the cost of doing business you aren’t getting a complete picture.”...

    When women run and are competent, they win. Evidently, Alison Lundergun Grimes doesn't have a singing voice. Maybe she needs to practice with the church choir.


    ...Grimes is being encouraged (click here) to fill the apparent void in 2014, and supporters argue she has a number of assets: no record for McConnell to attack, the daughter of a former Kentucky Democratic Party chairman and a tight relationship with former President Bill Clinton.
    It appears the best jabs circulating about Grimes for now are the secretary of state's speeches—where she often refers to herself in the third-person and shouts repeatedly....
    Why is it 'cartoons' of people are so appealing to the electorate in Kentucky? Rove started that mess with Ashley Judd as well. People don't have enough education to understand what a candidate is about so much as how they measure up in popularity with adrenalin views of the world?

    The obvious sander of the commercial is an attempt to have her be the defeated candidate of the Democratic Party, Howard Dean. I don't know, maybe invite Mr. Dean to organize the internet ground game and speak to the people of Kentucky about AN ECONOMY powered with internet ability. The electronic infrastructure was part of The American Jobs Act to bring good service and opportunity to the people of Kentucky. I think Howard is a good advocate.

    And many Kentuckians like goats. They do. They give wholesome milk used by children with challenged dietary demands and they are often companions to Kentucky Bluegrass Thoroughbreds.

    Gabe, (click here) a great-great grandson of the famous Triple Crown winner Secretariat, seen playing around with his barnyard companion, a goat, was adopted from a horse rescue by Angie McDowell.

    It looks to me Mr. McConnell is insulting Secretariat.

    Now, Mary Landrieu is a prime example of a hard working Democrat. She has brought much economic relief to the people of Louisiana. Of course, Louisiana has received significant monies for Katrina damage, but, Kentucky needs a Democrat that had help improve the economy of the state and Senator  Landrieu is a great example of a successful woman that can get the job done.

    Three-term incumbent from Louisiana, Democrat Mary Landrieu was re-elected with 52% of the vote in 2008. She will be 59 years old in 2014. Landrieu has already begun to fundraise for her intended re-election bid for a fourth term. Potential Republican opponents include Lieutenant Governor Jay Dardenne, Congressman Bill Cassidy, Congressman John Fleming, Congressman Charles Boustany, Congressman Steve Scalise, and former Congressman Jeff Landry. A Public Policy Poll published on February 13, 2013 shows Landrieu leading Dardenne by 46% to 43%, Boustany by 48% to 42%, Landry by 48% to 39%, Scalase by 48% to 38%, Cassidy by 50% to 40%, and Fleming by 50% to 38%.

    I would hope Senator Landrieu can help the people of Louisiana to understand how they can't change the paradigm of success they have had with her leadership. I would think Senator Landrieu would be able to show the impoverished people of Louisiana where opportunity was lost with obstructive tactics by Republicans. 


    Three-term incumbent from Maine Republican Susan Collins was re-elected with 61% of the vote in 2008. She will be 61 years old in 2014. Collins has not yet announced whether or not she will seek a fourth term.  Former state treasurer Bruce Poliquin is a possible Republican candidate.

    Maine has always been one of those states I never understand why they chronically vote Republican. I like Susan Collins. But, in all honesty, when one looks across the spectrum of Maine's economy, local and state governments they have a lot of extremism. 

    That is what allows extremism to exist. When there is not a healthy and strong second party to make the issues of the day clear and concise extremism grows and that is exactly what is the problem in the USA. The 2020 census is coming up. 

    There needs to be viable Democratic candidates in the states where extremism by Republicans have eradicated political competition. The other voice has to be there. The newest generation of abandoned Americans have to begin to push back against the extreme voices of the GOP. We are losing them to outsourced profits of Wall Street. The people of Maine are good people and they would listen to reasonable dialogue about the future of their children.

    In Massachusetts there is an election this year. I do believe the winner of that election will have to run again in 2014. Democratic Congressman Ed Markey and Stephen Lynch are running in the 2013 special election to finish the term.

    How many are very happy Rep. Markey is finally taking the stage in the Senate? I am. He is a great guy and love clean water and good land use. He has a great scope to draw on for legislating in the Senate. I look forward to his tenure there.

    I understand he is having a few fundraisers. All this is rather last minute, so he hasn't had all that much time to get his campaign up and running, but, I am sure he will be on the streets of Massachusetts soon to ASK the voters to come out and place their ballots for him. Right now, the Right Wing media is attempting to paint him as Martha Coakley and as an absentee candidate that has no respect for the voter.

    Rep. Markey is very used to being comfortable with his past elections, but, one district will not win him the Senate seat and he is probably not as well known as he could be in Massachusetts.

    Carl Levin is retiring from seven terms in office for Michigan. That is 42 years. That is a long time. That is two generations.

    Potential Democratic candidates include Jocelyn Benson, who unsuccessfully ran for Michigan Secretary of State in 2010, Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, U.S. Representative Gary Peters and former U.S. Representative Mark Schauer. Potential Republican candidates include U.S. Representative Justin Amash, State Senator Roger Kahn, U.S. Representative Mike Rogers, former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, former state Republican Party Chairman Saul Anuzis, and state Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville.

    Now this can be an interesting race because 2014 is also the Governor's race. Snyder is modeling himself after Scott Walker and his current rating among potential voters is 50%. Not that he really did anything in the state to improve the economy, that was primarily President Obama's policies at work with the auto industry. But, he is viewed as the most popular of any Republican governor up for re-election in 2014. See, it can be a good year for Democrats in all levels of government. They need to get the abandoned generation involved. They have the most stake in the game and they need to see their path forward with Democratic leadership.

    No leader for Levin seat (click here)

    MARCH 28, 2013 AT 10:24 AM
    The race to succeed retiring U.S. Sen. Carl Levin in 2014 is in the early stages with no announced candidates. The situation is so fluid that any polling may mean little with a primary about 16 months away and a general election 21 months in the offing.
    But that didn't stop East Lansing GOP pollster Steve Mitchell from releasing a poll Wednesday night that surveyed how some top possible candidates are doing among likely Michigan 2014 voters.
    On the Democratic side, U.S. Rep. John Dingell's wife Debbie Dingell led U.S. Rep. Gary Peters of Bloomfield Township 30-25 percent with 45 percent undecided. The poll of 387 voters has a margin of error of nearly plus-minus 5 percentage points.
    On the GOP side, Mitchell Research & Communications' automated survey of 438 likely voters asked about four possible candidates — U.S. Reps. Mike Rogers of Brighton, Justin Amash of Cascade Township, former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land and Ronna Romney McDaniel , the niece of 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

    That 50% approval rating could be in contention depending on the poll. This is a poll out of Raleigh, NC on March 6, 2013. Both the Senate and Governor seats are probably the Democrats to lose.


    Democrats lead in Michigan gubernatorial race (click here)

    ...Not helping incumbent Republican Governor Rick Snyder’s re-election race is his current approval rating. Sitting at a 37% approval rating and larger 54% disapproval rating, Snyder has dropped one point in his approval rating since a previous poll in December.
    Comparing potential Democratic candidates for Governor next year with Governor Snyder, every Democrat beats Snyder. Voters prefer Virg Bernero, the mayor of Lansing and past candidate for Governor, to Snyder 43-38. Voters also prefer Democratic Congressman Gary Peters and former Democratic Congressman Mark Schauer to Snyder 44-37 and 40-36, respectively. Congressman Peters comes out on top of the Democratic potentials for Governor next year with his 7 point lead.

    Michigan also needs better legislators in the state government. They are simply mimicking ALEC and hoping it will make a difference in the economy. The GOP strongly believes since Michigan is wedged between Ohio and Wisconsin, Synder is a dead ringer for the other two governors and a shoe in for 2014. I wouldn't be so sure.

    Rick Snyder: The Scott Walker of 2014 (click here)

    In signing legislation Tuesday to make Michigan a right-to-work state — read this explainer to understand what the law will do — Snyder put himself in legion with the likes of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, both of whom rose to national prominence after passing legislation that earned them the ire of organized labor.
    Like Kasich and Walker, Snyder is being feted by conservatives, who have long viewed the need to pay dues to join a union as overly burdensome, and demonized by liberals who view the move as an ideologically-motivated play to limit the political power of unions....

    On December 28, 2011, Snyder signed into law The Public Employee Domestic Partner Benefit Restriction Act, which prevents the same-sex domestic partners of public employees at both the state and local level from receiving health benefits. This is pending court action and of course everyone is waiting for the Supreme Court to weigh in.

    The GOP is attempting a war strategy engaged by the USA military. TAKE THE REGION and we'll win the war. It is sort of built around the Domino Effect. We all know how well that worked. But, I would sincerely like to see ALEC stop setting law for the entire country. We are not homogenized in the USA and we don't need corporate guidance. We need to revitalize our local economies and cultivate ART and all it's expressions to move forward and stabilize the USA from imploding every time Wall Street does.

    The Arts and Cultural funding in the State of Michigan has been drastically reduced under this governor. He has nearly driven the entire film industry elsewhere. That was his intention the entire time. Why? Who knows? Sometimes the GOP simply hates creativity and growth.

    The only successful economic venture Snyder CONTINUED is the partnership between Germany and Michigan that began long before Snyder was governor. At least he knew enough not to ruin it. But, we all know that Mr. Snyder has been notorious for taking the achievements of the Michigan brain trust and selling them to Wall Street for personal wealth. Well, this partnership is a wealth of potential that needs to be protected from a governor with draconian intentions. It is suppose to benefit the people of Michigan, not the bankers of Wall Street.

    Posted: Mar 21, 2012 6:18 AM EDTUpdated: Apr 18, 2012 7:07 AM EDT
    "Michigan is home to three Fraunhofer centers, (click here) noted partnerships of businesses and our universities, where our best talents are discovering new things, making things and making things work," Snyder said. "Michigan is one of the top states in the nation for research and development with more than $16 billion in industrial research and development, and close to $2 billion in university research, and we're always working to help our leading universities turn the latest developments into jobs."
    Fraunhofer USA currently has eight centers focused on sustainable energy, manufacturing innovation, biotechnology, medical devices, software engineering, lasers and coatings. The three Michigan centers include the headquarters in Plymouth, the Center for Laser Technology and the Center for Coatings & Laser Applications....

    Short of riding the coattails of the previous governor, Rick Snyder is looking to exploit natural resources as a means to growth in Michigan. It doesn't matter if the Great Lakes have a trust fund to clean them up for the benefit of health and tourism. Who cares about that? It is just that exploiting natural resources is the only untapped resource in the state. So, he is deferring to the petroleum and coal industry rather than seeking alternative energy, like wind over the Great Lakes, which Canada states has huge potential in lighting up the entire REGION. The wind maps are absolutely fantastic, but, hey wind doesn't have big money donors working for it.

    Do you realize the kind of income Michigan can realize from wind generation over the Great Lakes? I mean what are people thinking?

    One-term incumbent from Minnesota Democrat Al Franken defeated one-term Republican Norm Coleman by 312 votes in a three-way race with 42% of the vote in 2008. Franken will be 63 years old in 2014. Franken will seek re-election.
    Possible Republican candidates include Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, Congressman John Kline and former state Representative Laura Brod.
    I heard Michele Bachmann was getting tired of the US House. Interesting. I hope Senator Franken's campaign goes well this time. He has done great work in the past six years for Minnesota.

    By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY
    Published March 13, 2013, 04:35 PM

    ...Currently you can "not" take your phone (click here) and switch to another provider at a cheaper price.
    Franken says, "It's the way it's been since we had cellphones and smart phones. It's just that the Library of Congress changed it and Congress can change it back and we're going to do it."
    So what's the penalty for breaking the law? Senator Franken says it could put you behind bars for up to five years. The bill is set to be vote on in the upcoming weeks.

    Phones are expensive. And having to change phones every time a person gets a better deal from a carrier is very inconvenient, loses information and ads to land fills.

    Bill would provide local courts with access to security training, existing grant money (click here)

    Last week, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) reintroduced the Local Courthouse Safety Act, which would help improve security at smaller courthouses around the country. The law would provide local courts with access to security training, give states authority to use existing grant money to improve courthouse security, as well as give local courts access to excess federal security equipment, such as metal detectors and screening equipment.
    "Minnesota's local sheriffs and courthouse personnel make our communities stronger and safer, and they shouldn't have to put their lives on the line to do their jobs," Franken said in a statement. "My legislation will give courthouses all over the state access to the resources they need to keep our justice system safe for everyone, and I'm going to keep fighting to pass it into law."

    Isn't Mississippi one of the most impoverished states in the USA? Where is the DNC? The politics in the state has become very extreme.
    Six-term incumbent Mississippi Republican Thad Cochran was re-elected with 62% of the vote in 2008. He will be 76 years old in 2014. Cochran is undecided on whether he will seek reelection and will not announce his decision for several months.

    Mississippi has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the nation. We all know that high teen pregnancy rates go along with low educational achievement and poverty. That is consistent. This teen was TWELVE YEARS OLD when she became pregnant. To say the citizens of Mississippi are demoralized is an understatement.

    By Emily Le Coz

    TUPELO, Miss., Aug 26 (Reuters) - Artasia Bobo, (click here) a 16-year-old Mississippi high school sophomore, was only 12 when she got pregnant and doesn't recall receiving much in the way of sex education.

    Holding her 3-year-old daughter, Annsley, after cheerleading practice recently, the honor-roll student said she's now an advocate for comprehensive sex education offered as soon as possible.

    "What I went through is nothing any girl would want to go through," she said. "It changed my life. I love my daughter, but if I could go back in time, my life would be a whole lot different."

    Mississippi, the poorest U.S. state, has the nation's highest teen pregnancy rate. Yet until this year, the state allowed schools to forgo sex education entirely....

    The reason the electorate of Red States react to strongly to economic rhetoric by the GOP is because they are impoverished and know what a penny is worth. They don't understand how their own society limits their outcomes, they only understand that every penny is precious and when the federal government spends it is a sin and not a benefit.

    This violates federal statutes, but, the people of Mississippi don't have the means to sue their state government. Now the reason a 12 year old was pregnant was to bring more income home.

    Greg Kaufmann on September 28, 2012 - 9:01 AM ET

    ...Before (click here)there was Clinton-Gingrich Welfare Reform in 1996 there was Mississippi Governor Kirk Fordice’s “Work First” pilot program in 1995.
    That year, the Clinton administration granted the Republican governor a waiver to implement a new work requirement in six counties that Fordice claimed would result in 50 percent of Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) recipients getting off welfare and into jobs within three years....

    ...“We’re talking about low-wage jobs without the possibility of promotion, since the women didn’t have the education level needed for promotion,” says Burnett. “And a lot of seasonal jobs that were obviously short-term too.”
    A 1996 report from graduate students at the University of Southern Mississippi’s School of Social Work indicated that women were also forced from GED programs, and two-year associate degree programs, in order to take Work First jobs. Some did so despite lacking access to childcare—even when working night shifts—so children were placed in situations that increased their risk of suffering abuse or neglect....
    And to think Mississippi wants a personhood amendment to their state constitution. They can't even provide decent and quality of life to the people already living there.

    Ya know the DNC is often criticized for the wealth that exists in their party. It is because the Democrats plug into poverty and seek to resolve it and the citizens in states where the governors allow it, do better. If something isn't done with the poverty of Mississippi while the DNC is ignoring the potential for electing people who can change this disaster of a state; the DNC could be stated to have a preference for the wealthy, period.

    This article is from last November. You know the elections of 2012.

    Nov 8, 2012, 1:00am Est
    Updated: November 8, 2012 EST
    G. Scott Thomas
    There are various ways to measure poverty, (click here) but two common indicators yield precisely the same results. Both show Mississippi with America's worst poverty rate and New Hampshire with the best....
    ...Roughly one-sixth of the families in Mississippi (17.4 percent) fell below the poverty line last year, as measured by the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey. Only 5.6 percent of New Hampshire's families were similarly unfortunate.

    The second indicator is the percentage of all individuals (regardless of family status) who are classified as poor. The corresponding rates were 22.6 percent in Mississippi and 8.8 percent in New Hampshire....

    Now, no one is going to tell me there aren't young people in Mississippi graduated from the university systems not interested in running for office to improve the quality of life of their communities. I don't believe that for one minute. The DNC has some work to do and I doubt seriously it will take much lookin'.

    The U.S. Supreme Court last summer upheld most of the federal health overhaul that President Barack Obama signed into law in 2010. However, justices said states have an option, not a mandate, to expand Medicaid to people making up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level, or about $15,000 a year. In Mississippi, the current cutoff is about $5,500 a year, though the state's Medicaid program does not cover many able-bodied adults within that income group....

    Over 21% of the citizens of Mississippi are covered by Medicaid. 21% That is a national shame and criminal in the draconian agenda of the Republicans in that state. What do they think they are doing to people?

    ...The governor has said for months that Mississippi, one of the poorest states in the nation, can't afford to add an estimated 300,000 people to a program that already covers more than 640,000. The state's population is about 3 million.
    The 2010 law says the federal government would pay 100 percent of medical expenses for the newly qualified Medicaid enrollees from 2014 to 2017. The federal share would be reduced to 90 percent by 2020, with each state paying the balance.
    "I don't trust the federal government to pay 100 percent of Medicaid for the next three years," Bryant said Wednesday....

    The Democrats in Mississippi at the state level are in minority. They are struggling to push through a Medicaid expansion for their state because if they sign onto the program from the federal government the costs escalate to their budget after 2017. 

    Now, this is how idiotic the entire state is when it comes to modernization. The governments have cut their budgets so deeply for so long they are completely dependent on federal monies to exist. They don't have monies to modernize their own infrastructure so there is basically nothing more than FAX machines in most government offices. The amount of monies needed NOW to bring Mississippi up to speed to even compete in a real world economy is daunting.

    If Mississippi institutes the Affordable Care Act there will be an uptick in their economy. It is bound to happen with every state accepting Medicaid expansion. There will be more money in the health care system. The problem is this. What will Mississippi do to springboard off that uptick? How much you wanna bet they will decrease taxes in political shenanigans and impoverish the state further so they are more poor and more reliant on federal funds?

    When that happens they will complain the evil federal government did it and they said you couldn't trust them in the first place.

    You want to know why criminals and their bad demands about liberty are so high in some states? Because there is no economy and committing crimes under draconian laws is the only way to make enough money to buy food for oneself. Mississippi sees $15,000 per year to qualify for Medicaid as a wind fall profit from somewhere.

    2011 Dollars - per capita income is $20,521 in the state of Mississippi. What kind of tax base is that? And no one sees life has to change in Mississippi? Mississippi all by itself is a drag on the USA economy.

    Someone young, well educated, loves their state and country and wants to make big and exciting changes in Mississippi needs to run for office. There needs to be an entire population of young people determined to bring Mississippi to it's prominence and it needs to happen soon. I want the federal welfare to the State government, except for Medicaid, to stop. The entire state is in poor condition and it needs rehabilitation including IT'S VALUE SYSTEM!

    The Republican Party has no ideas and it has cast their Red States into abject poverty without an answer for them. Someone needs to take the young people of Mississippi under their wing and make it happen.

    The increase in minimum wage will be one small miracle in that state. 

    Continued in next entry with Montana.