With less than 200 days before deciding who will be POTUS #45, five states hold primaries today: Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Following the problems with voting in New York, hopefully there won't be so many this week, although location limitations do not bode well. Since the New York primaries, Ted has cut a deal with John but thinks the convention will be contested, people are eyeing Bernie's email address book, Donald buys a ticket to Seattle but gets his historical election facts wrong while encouraging an academic discipline, John corners the astronaut demographic, Hillary rejects a non-endorsement, Joe is focusing on the Senate, and the new first rule of Abe Club is that there is no more Abe Club. [more inside]
In the endurance test that is the 2016 US presidential election, we finally come to New York State where all of the polling stations are now open. The state consists of not only the city famed for fine dining but also the mainly rural upstate region. There's a lot of delegates here; Ballotpedia has information about the Democratic and Republican allocations. Since last time, Paul said "Nope", GOP leaders said "Meh" followed by "Rules?", Washington Democrats had their own local endurance test, Virgin Islands Republicans had an unpleasant meeting, Bernie visited the Vatican, Hillary visited Staten Island (as did Donald), the Democratic candidates debated, Donald is figuring out West Virginia, Ted appears very conservative, and a grumpy John is aiming for second. [more inside]
As we enter the last 30 weeks of the election campaign, delegate talk becomes more prevalent. On the Republican side, current Donald (future Donald) did not have a good Saturday in Colorado and South Carolina, with Cruz picking up delegates, and Kasich seeing a path despite lacking delegates. On the Democratic side, Bernie's recent good run has added to his count, although he remains behind Hillary. Voter suppression continues to be a strong issue, while Wikipedia has some interesting data on historical voter turnout. Meanwhile, Paul Ryan may or may not be running, while Kevin Spacey, who plays Frank Underwood in House of Cards series, says some real-life presidential candidates ‘appear to be fictional’. [more inside]
And then there were five. On the Democratic party side, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders remain. On the Republican party side, Ted Cruz, John Kasich and Donald Trump remain. But there's also the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, and lots of other parties. The dates for candidate debates are fluid; for example there may be a Democratic debate on April 14th. In other election news, the New York Times thinks that Candidate Trump would be "Wildly unpopular", while the Washington Post thinks that Republicans are gaming the voting system in their favor. Cruz and Sanders lead in Wisconsin polls, Kasich enjoys a beer, and the BBC describes five ways the Republican bloodbath could end. [more inside]
Jon Chait, New York Magazine: The Party of Andrew Jackson vs. the Party of Obama
Downplaying or ignoring Jackson’s conservatism, while conjuring a liberal ideology on his behalf, served a partisan interest for 20th-century Democrats. But there are also honest reasons that may have led historians like Schlesinger astray. From the standpoint of the 20th century, the United States had evolved into a two-party system in which the more liberal of the two parties had its strongest base in the Deep South. As this felt to many to be the inevitable direction of American politics, it seemed natural to peer back at the 19th century and see those coalitions in protean form. Despite its conservative views on race and suspicion of Washington, the white South probably appeared like a plausible base for the development of a liberal party. From the standpoint of the 21st century, things look very different.[more inside]
Hillary Rodham Clinton has announced (via a YouTube video and emails to supporters) she is running for the position of nominee on the Democratic Party ticket for the 2016 US Presidential Election. Her campaign website. Will she win the Democratic candidacy? Bookmakers currently say "very likely". And the presidency itself? "50/50". [more inside]
How hedge-fund mogul Tom Steyer is using his checkbook to punish climate-change deniers, persuade Obama to halt the Keystone XL pipeline, and try to save the planet. [more inside]
The Affordable Care Act was "put together by a bunch of elitists who don't really fundamentally understand the American people," said former DNC chair Howard Dean. A few years ago, Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland voiced concerns about Democrats' "intellectual elitism" and hesitancy to "talk using populist language." Republicans have long used accusations of elitism against Democrats as an electoral tactic. Did elitism lose the Democrats the 2014 midterms?
The rumours are increasing that there will be a merger between the two left-leaning political parties in Canada, the hapless Liberals under the wooden Michael Ignatieff, and the perennial almost-show New Democrats under the magnificently mustached Jack Layton. Denials all 'round, of course, but as separate parties they have not managed to take down Stephen Harper and his wiley Conservatives.
This f*cking election. A babble tower.
The Chicago Tribune has been a bastion of Republican endorsements, having consistently endorsed every single Republican presidential nominee since it was founded in 1847. One of its earliest managing editors, Joseph Medill, was a founder of the Republican Party. Today, it endorsed its first Democratic presidential candidate in its 161-year history. And it certainly did not do so halfheartedly. [more inside]
The Heartbreak Campaign. "Increasingly opposed to the Vietnam War, Robert F. Kennedy struggled over whether he should challenge his party’s incumbent president, Lyndon Johnson, in 1968. His younger brother, Teddy, was against it. His wife, Ethel, urged him on. Many feared he would be assassinated, like the older brother he mourned." [more inside]
Gravelter Skelter [video, WTF content].
Tag-clouds for the first debates of the Democratic and Republican primaries. via the kreat orange satan
Sen. Mike Gravel (Alaska) invited to New Hampshire Democratic Presidential Debate by CNN after large public protest of CNN's exclusion.
CNN has invited Sen. Mike Gravel to the Democratic Presidential Debate on CNN. This was after reporting CNN would not invite him back and large public protest. Democrats will take the stage at Saint Anselm College on June 3, Republicans on June 5. Youtube links, If you missed him on the CNN debate or the after on MSNBC.
"Poor George. He can't help it. He was born with a silver foot in his mouth." Ann Richards, former democratic governor of Texas, has passed away from esophageal cancer. She was 73.
Congressman dies of rare disease Congressman Bob Matsui, who was recently elected to a 14th term in Congress, has died due to a rare stem cell disease. Matsui, who was one of the leading opponents of President Bush's plan to eliminate Social Security, was the ranking Democrat on the Congressional subcommittee on Social Security.
One Left wing site's idea of tolerance and respect for divergent opinions. Truly hysterical (in all meanings of the word) post from the administrator of the Democratic Underground's message board announcing that from now you're only allowed to post messages that they agree with. No pro-Green Party points of view allowed, and certainly no Republicans. After all, they're evil. Not mistaken, mind you, nor misguided. Nope, anyone who's to the right of the Democratic party is evil. This sort of moral absolutism reminds me of, well, the Taliban.