Thursday, August 28, 2008

Liveblogging the Obamessiah's speech...

10:10 - I'm pretty sure he's speaking from a chinese food box.

10:12 - Tiniest. Flag. Pin. Ever.

10:13 - Fine. His kids are cute. I admit it.

10:14 - Hillary says you can get off your knees now.

10:16 - BUSH! BAAAADDD!!!!

10:18 - I'm pretty sure this is the same speech as 4 years ago.

10:18 - Cheap applause lines about vets and Katrina. Lame.



10:21 - How long til we hear about a confused McCain?

10:22 - Can someone get Obama the latest economic numbers? Thanks.

10:22 - Thanks, Phil Gramm. Ugh.

10:23 - "(McCain) just doesn't know." Well that confused thing didn't take long.

10:24 - "He doesn't get it."

10:24 - OLD? OLD?!?! THAT WAS SUBTLE! Ha.

10:25 - "You're on your own." Well yeah, because we aren't socialists.

10:27 - Dude. Enough stories. Just tell us what you want to do as President. Sheezus.

10:30 - I just noticed the background on his closeups make it look like he's in a geisha bath house.

10:33 - INVESTMENT = Raising your taxes

10:36 - He set this section of the speech up as one about policy specifics.... he lied.

10:37 - "Equal pay for women" = VOTE FOR ME HILLARY CLINTON SUPPORTERS!!! Maybe Obama should start with his own staff.

10:38 - He'll cut wasteful programs? Wait. What? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!111ELEVENTY!!!

10:39 - He's ready for a debate? Ok, let's get caught up on those Town Hall meetings you've to refused to participate in.

10:41 - God, I can't wait for the debates Obama claims he so desperately wants.

10:42 - We're not saying DEMOCRATS won't keep us safe....Just the ones with bad judgement and willing to sacrifice sound policy for politics.

10:44 - THE SAVIOR HAS COME!!!! And he's an idiot.

10:48 - "If you don't have a record to run on..." HAHAHAHAHA! Hmm...yeah, that reminds me of someone.

10:51 - "More wealth than any other nation....the best Universities".... wait a sec, I thought we just got done learning how crappy things were.

10:54 - "We cannot turn back!" :throws up:

10:56 - Wait a sec. COUNTRY MUSIC?!!?!??! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Ok. I can't take it anymore. DJ Tablesauce out.

Weapons of Mass Distraction

McCain to run an "historic ad" tonight speaking directly to Obama on the night of his speech.

Pawlenty canceling interviews today.

Romney family gets security sweep.

Boy, ya think McCain's people know much about the art of distraction?

Without question, these are the kinds of leaks that are carefully coordinated. While we all know that the story of the day is Obama's acceptance speech atop Mt. Pompous, the goal for Obama's opposition is to make sure it isn't the ONLY story. Distractions like the ones listed above may not offer much substance, but they pull coverage the Obama team would like to keep from themselves.

Once again, congratulations to the McCain campaign on playing the game the way it needs to be played.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

You have GOT to be kidding me.

The Temple of O.

Yeah, I know they were going for the "hey look, I'm at the White House!" look.

Has being pompous really worked well for Obama the past couple months?

Sheezus. Amateurs.

UPDATE: Here are a few names for the structure that I've blatantly stolen from some fellow Buckeye fans who took a look at the above monstrosity:

House of Hubris
The Hollow-seum
The Baraqueduct
Hope limp U.S.
The Egopolis
Mt. Pompous

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

So where do we stand?

Below you will find my latest electoral map prediction for Nov4. Clicking on it will enlarge it for easier viewing.

As you can see, I have McCain winning in a squeaker. There are several must wins for John McCain...

Colorado: While this state has voted Republican since 1996, it currently is too close to call. According to, Obama currently has the edge 45-42, but that includes some recent suspect polling(cough cough! ZOGBY! cough!). Rasmussen and Quinnipac have shown recent slim leads for McCain.

Nevada: recently has the average of the polls at 45-42.5 in favor of McCain. Once again, a Zogby poll skews the results a bit. McCain's focus on nuclear energy and the Yucca Mountain issue may cause problems as we approach Nov4, so keep a close eye on this one.

Virginia: The influx of blue staters into the northern part of Virginia has made my current home state start to turn slowly from red to blue. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine's success have shown the Dem trend in the state that McCain needs to fight. With that being said, VA has been a GOP presidential stronghold for decades. currently has a 1.5% lead for Obama.

Ohio: My HOME state. As the saying goes, So Goes Ohio, So Goes the Nation. This one is going to be a doozie. Virtually all recent polls show a statistical dead heat...except for Zogby. I'm a little worried the new 'early voting' policy will provide a clear advantage for Obama.

The states I'm counting on, but are far from being locked up are Indiana, Florida, Missouri and North Carolina. McCain will have to spend a bit of cash in each one to maintain his lead, but at the end of the day these should be solidly red.

In my scenario much of the Midwest is left as Obama country. Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan and Pennsylvania are all blue. By no means does that mean I feel McCain doesn't have a shot here, I just think this is where Obama will end up unloading most of his cash (plus Ohio). They are expensive states for paid media and politically complex. McCain simply won't have the money or organization to compete in all four. However, if just one can be wrestled from Obama's hands it puts McCain in a much better situation.

So there you have it. Obviously things will fluctuate as we move forward so this map of mine may evolve over time.

Please feel free to forward your thoughts or comment below. Also, give the map a shot yourself at

Zzzzzzz....wait, what....?

I've had a couple emails from people asking why I haven't yet commented on the first night of the Democratic Convention.

Pretty simple really.... there wasn't anything really to comment on. For what they were trying to accomplish, the Dems did a good job. So I guess the question is, 'what were they trying to accomplish'?

Did they really need an entire evening dedicated to an improved perception of Mrs. Obama? Nope. What they did need was a non-confrontational, kum-bay-ya evening where Democrats could embrace being Democrats. Obama's team is starting to learn they aren't going to win every single swing voter. What they need to focus on is securing each and every Democrat. This seems like a smart strategy considering the clear advantage Democrats have nationwide over Republicans when it comes to how Americans identify themselves.

Obama's campaign understands Tuesday and Wednesday have the potential to be frightingly unstable and unsettling to their national Party. If Hillary's base acts up in ways many consider quite possible, the unity Obama requires in order to be victorious on Nov4 is left in shambles with only 60-some days to clean up the mess.

So night 1 was dedicated to provide a unified, Democratic message. They celebrated their past and honored their heroes. They tried to make everyone in that hall and every traditional Democrat watching at home proud of their Party.

Now they just need to hope that doesn't fall apart with one giant Hillary bitchslap.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I absolutely love this new ad by the McCain camp. I score it a 9/10 and it would be a 10 if they added maybe one more statement regarding experience/leadership instead the chick putting her hand on her chin.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

What now?

My first reaction upon learning late Friday night that Obama's pick was Joe Biden was that McCain needed someone who could handle the rhetorical onslaught that the Dem VP candidate was bound to subject to his rival at their debate on October 2nd. Biden's decades in the Senate have made him one of the better communicators in DC. When he speaks it doesn't seem like he is reading.... he speaks to the voters in ways they understand. Unfortunately for him, his rhetorical talents have ultimately led to unfortunate gaffes. It also has given him a reputation as someone who is as arrogant as he is long winded.

So who can stand up to him? Wouldn't we want someone that even the mainstream media would expect to put up a good fight? Mitt Romney comes to mind. Experienced on the campaign trail, did a solid job in the debates and would be expected by many to be Biden's equal when they sit across from eachother at the debate table.

That's the exact reason why it can't be Mitt.

In politics, much of the game is about expectations. Mitt vs. Joe would be billed as a fight between two evenly matched boxers and even a 'win' by Mitt wouldn't be a story.

Another argument for Romney is that he could be the attack dog on the stump that can match Biden's expected scathing political offensive. But once again, Mitt would be EXPECTED to do this. It wouldn't be a story.

Finally, picking Mitt would not be a surprise. He has been considered a favorite for the pick for some time. He's a known commodity to voters so there wouldn't be any substantive coverage introducing him to the public. Once again, there wouldn't be a story.

Now it can be considered a positive for Romney that there wouldn't be a story because, as I've discussed before, the last thing McCain needs is a news coverage about how bad a pick he has made.

But while McCain had a good run of coverage in the weeks leading up to the Democratic convention, he is still an underdog and playing it safe is not how he will win.

There are two variables that the GOP Presidential candidate must consider before he makes his pick: 'Who's the Boss'& 'Expectations'?

Let me explain.

Who's the Boss?
One thing came to mind when I first saw Obama and Biden on stage together as running mates....which of them should be a candidate for President? Obama's inexperience is highlighted by Biden's tenure as a Senator in Washington DC. Of course, our Presidential candidate could pick Wilford Brimley and McCain would still be considered the old guy on the ticket, so age isn't necessarily a consideration. While people like us...the ones that read political blogs daily and pay attention to every little news story...what we want in a Vice-President is someone who can step in on day one. But is that how the swing voter thinks? Do they need a Dick Cheney? It's my contention that the people who start paying attention 30 days out are perfectly ok with the President playing the role of the mentor with the Vice-President being next in line eight years from now. They've seen this role played over and over again...and they never responded well to the Vice President who defied that role, Dick Cheney. That means a younger, less experienced, but still competent candidate could satisfy the swing electorate.

At the same time it would also serve as a subtle reminder to the voter about who is in charge in each the Republican and Democratic ticket. It wouldn't be a question with the Republican ticket, but some may question who's the boss of the Democratic ticket. In response, one might say that this didn't have much of an effect in 2000 when Cheney was clearly more experienced than Bush. However, Bush didn't have the gravitas problem that Obama clearly has now. Bush had served as Governor for years and his political pedigree was without question. That's not the case with Sen. Obama.

Expectations. When the mainstream media previews the first Vice-Presidential debate between a younger and energetic GOP candidate against Sen. Biden there will be no question who will be expected to win. Biden's rhetorical abilities will make him the overwhelming favorite heading into the event. So the worst that can happen for the GOP is that the VP candidate doesn't 'win', as expected, and the VP debate is therefore a wash. But what if the GOP VP candidate surprises the world and somehow pulls off what could be considered a victory? That would be a story that owns the media cycle for days.

So the question is who fits this profile? Who can make the VP selection a real story, rather than illicit a collective yawn from the press?

Pawlenty has been considered a longtime frontrunner for the job and while he would satisfy the first two angles, he wouldn't maximize the 'expectations' variable. His standing as a current favorite wouldn't provide the lack of a story the Romney selection would make, but it wouldn't make everyone take notice either.

My preference? Sarah Palin or Bobby Jindal. Each are supremely competent and maximize the 'Expectations' and 'Who's the Boss' variables. Finally, with McCain making his selection the day after the conclusion of the Democratic Convention, there are no two people in the country that would make the entire media stand up and take notice and pull coverage away from Obama's acceptance speech the night before.

What is their negative? Experience, of course. But do they really have any less than Obama? Each already has significant accomplishments in office, much moreso than Obama. If nothing else, they would highlight the experience debate and make it an issue once again. This highlights McCain's primary strength over Obama to the all-important swing voter. Imagine the talking points when the Obama campaign challenges the Jindal/Palin pick?

'We may have the same amount of experience, Mr. Obama...but what have you done lately?'

Friday, August 22, 2008

3BP gets it right. (update: WRONG)

It's Bayh. We called it.


Or not. Obama/Biden? Thank you. I couldn't be happier to be more wrong. The McCain campaign rejoices.

Now the question does McCain respond? Biden is going to do very well at the debates. He's the older statesman who can talk his way into an Amish girl's knickers.... so who can answer the call?

Pawlenty? I'm not so sure.

Romney, as much it pains me to say it, may be the guy.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Massive McCain Money Advantage

It seems McCain isn't in quite the financial pickle many thought he'd be when Obama went back on his word and decided to decline public financing.

Within the July financial reports we've discovered some interesting numbers that show McCain may in fact have the advantage going into the beginning of the official general election season.

As we know, each candidate raises funds for both his primary and general election campaign. McCain is taking the $84 million in public funds for the general election while Obama is raising his own cash so he can use MORE than $84 million. So, obviously if Obama raises more than $84 million, which many imagine to be the case, he will have the advantage.

But this does not take into account the funds raised and spent by the national parties. Both the DNC and RNC are able to spend their money on paid media, GOTV, etc. to support their nominee.

In other words, we have to pretty much combine the money raised by each Party and each candidate to get a good idea of how much money everyone has to spend as we head into the general election season.

Let's first take a look at the most important number...Cash on Hand (CoH). This is the amount the organization has in their bank account as of July 30, 2008:

CoH: $68,729,955

CoH: $4,526,688 (ed. note: Marc Ambinder reported the DNC has $29 million on hand. This is incorrect. After looking at the report it's clear he confused their CoH from 1/1/08 with their CoH as of 7/30/08.)


Now you may respond by thinking the DNC must have outspent the RNC by quite a bit to have that little cash on hand.


Spent 7/1/08 to 7/31/08: $19,449,026.91

Spent 7/1/08 to 7/31/08: $16,715,863.96

So the RNC is spending more AND has that much cash on hand? Impressive.

Now once McCain receives the official nomination, he won't have to worry about fundraising anymore for the general election since he is taking public funds. Obama's fundraising team, on the other hand, has to work through his lists and determine who has not maxed out to him for the general already and try to get them to contribute.

A question I have not seen answered is an important one.... how many of the people that contributed the maximum to Obama for the primary have already done so for the general as well? I would imagine it's safe to say many who can and do contribute the maximum for the primary are able to contribute the maximum for the general, and if that's the case then I'd imagine it's likely they would get writing the general election checks out of the way by now. I can't even begin to make a guess on what percentage have maxed out completely....but either way Obama and his team are going to have to put forward significant resources of time, energy and funds to make sure donors have maxed out on general election funds.

Now let's take a look at the most important numbers at this cash on hand for the candidates as they head into general election season.

McCain immediately has available $84 mill(automatic public funds) + $69 mill(RNC CoH) = $153 million

How much COH does Obama have at the end of July, including DNC funds? $66 mill (Obama CoH) + $4.5 mill(DNC CoH) = $70.5 mill

So just to get caught up to McCain's total funds available as of the Republican convention Obama has to work his butt off to raise $82.5 million. This does not even take into account whatever the RNC will raise over the course of the same time period. He may very well do it and surpass the total McCain/RNC total, but at what cost to his campaign? How much office space, staff, time on the phone and how many fundraisers will Obama's campaign need to compensate for the shortage?

And during this entire time, McCain and his staff will be focusing all of their time on winning the hearts and minds of American voters.

So much for the cash advantage, eh Barack?

Source of all financial data in this post:

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Picking McCain's VP and the Britneyfication of a candidate

There has been a lot of talk the past 2-3 days of McCain considering a pro-choice Vice-President. It has dominated McCain's coverage and even made his 150 mile trip to an oil rig in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico seem dull.

Politico has been leading the charge in covering this story:
"John McCain is seriously considering choosing a pro-abortion-rights running mate despite vocal resistance from conservatives, with former Democratic vice presidential nominee Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.) very much in the mix, close McCain advisers say."
Is he really? What about Rudy?

Well before we begin let's get one thing straight: McCain will select a pro-life Vice-Presidential nominee. Now if that is the case, why go through this mess regarding consideration of a pro-choice running mate?

The key phrase in the above paragraph from Politico is "despite vocal resistance from conservatives". This is exactly the kind of coverage McCain has been pushing for since the celebrity ads first went into rotation.

Let's start from the beginning of the strategy.

Phase 1: The 'celebrity ads' brought upon us the 'Britneyfication' of Barack Obama. While Americans love to follow their celebrities, they lose respect for those who have become overexposed. A number of swing voters began to understand the problem with Obama: All glitz, little substance, no experience.

These swing voters want something different from the Bush Administration. Obama had been that alternative, but these Britney-voters don't want to vote for an empty suit if they don't have to. But they needed convincing.

Phase 2: Go on the offensive to remind swing voters of McCain's independence. See my post of August 6th for an idea of when this effort began (thanks HotAir and CampaignSpot!). While the celebrity ad had become viral and hooked swing voters into wondering what was next, the McCain camp produced ads that focused on his independence. While not as popular as the celebrity ads, they provided a transition to...

Phase 3: Convincing the blogging class and the mainstream media that the McCain camp was seriously considering a pro-choice Vice-President...all together now... "despite vocal resistance from conservatives".

The swing voters that separated from the grasp of the Obamamaniacs now see the safe alternative to the Bush Administration that they needed. After being convinced that Obama is too much a risk and McCain clearly isn't in the pocket of the GOP, it is now safe to consider voting for a Republican.

And when McCain selects a pro-life running mate the conservative base will breathe a sigh of relief knowing the Republican candidate couldn't have been THAT stupid.

A winning strategy.

Thanks, Britney.

This is gonna get ugly.

We're seeing a lot of scuttlebutt lately on Obama's veep pick. This is good news for Obama since it gets the disaster that was the Rick Warren forum off the news cycle.

This morning it seems the latest best bet is Sen. Joe Biden. So what exactly would the Biden pick mean?

As we did before with Bayh, let's take a look at the three rules:

1) They can't hurt you. Can Biden hurt Obama? Definiately. He has a history of saying exactly the wrong thing.

2) Be competent. Biden has the resume to fulfil this requirement in spades. Does that mean I like Biden? No. It just means the media and GOP will have a hard time saying Biden isn't qualified for the job.

3) Communicate the message effectively. This goes back to #1. While Biden is going to have his missteps, he is also the perfect guy to pick if Obama feels he needs an attack dog.

So what does all this mean? It means Obama thinks he is up against a wall. Biden has the experience and chops to handle the VP role, but his ability to be a loose cannon means selecting him would mean taking a risk. Biden would clearly hold his own in the vice-presidential debates and as the #1 surrogate for the Party's nominee. But that doesn't mean he won't make serious missteps under pressure.

Obama isn't playing it safe. He senses the tide is turning against him and he needs someone who has the cojones to stand up against the GOP onslaught and show that the Dems can hold their own in a fight. Biden is the best guy for that job....unfortunately for Obama he also has shown a history of overreaching and getting himself knocked out.

Either way, I'll be very curious to see how the media reviews Biden's past rhetorical blunders.

Monday, August 18, 2008

People in Annapolis are funny.

Sorry for the lack of blogging this weekend. Seeing as I don't get paid for this I figured I should actually enjoy my weekend. Ha. Anyways, here's a bit of brilliance I found while up in Annapolis this weekend.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Bayh or Bye Bye

Obama is likely in the last stages of determining who his Vice Presidential candidate will be. While no voter makes their pick for President based on who the Vice Presidential candidate is, the coverage surrounding the choice is always taken into account in some way or another by the voter, just like every other variable in a campaign. As I've discussed off-blog many times before, there are several requirements of such a selection:

1) They can't hurt you. The last thing you want is news stories the day after the selection widely criticizing the choice.

2) Be competent. See Dan Quayle and John Edwards.

3) Communicate the message effectively. This person will be your number one surrogate. They need to look good on TV and sound good doing it. They will be competitively compared to the other Party's VP candidate constantly and must always be at the top of their game. In this short attention span world, every bit of coverage counts.

Notice which variable is missing that you widely see discussed? Yep. Geography.

There is no recent historical precedent that shows where the VP is from as having an effect on a race. Cheney? Gore? Quayle? Bush I? Nope. None of them helped.

'Til now.

In my opinion, there are five states that are absolute must wins for John McCain: Ohio, Indiana, Colorado, Virginia and Nevada. All five of these are extremely tight races and if McCain loses just one of them he is finished.

Of these five, who has viable VP candidates for Barack Obama? Nevada, Colorado and Ohio clearly have zero. There is some talk of Tim Kaine being chosen from VA, but since his name was raised recently we've seen much criticism of him and it would be a shock if he was chosen. So, who is left?

Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana.

While Indiana has voted Republican pretty much since the dawn of time, all polling through June(sadly, the most recent we have) showed Obama with an ever so slight lead. Now we can assume that Indiana will start swinging towards McCain and regain its historical bearings, but there is no question that the very popular and blue-dog Evan Bayh would fit the VP requirements by 1) providing positive coverage as a good pick; 2) be competent on the stump and 3) communicate Obama's message in a positive way.

Now while some swing-voting Hoosiers may not pick Obama simply because he has Bayh as a running mate, Bayh's political machine in Indiana is second to none and will work at 110% to see the ticket elected. This may be just enough to get Obama over the hump and win not only Indiana, but the Presidency itself.

The fight for 2012 begins 8/26/08

So Hillary gets her wish and will get her delegates at the Democrat Convention in Denver. Reports I've read state she never felt this was necessary, but her major supporters felt they needed their delegates' voices heard.


When was the last time you heard of Hillary Clinton being modest? I didn't think so.

Hillary still doesn't think Obama is going to win. Getting her name on the ballot is the first step towards becoming the "I Told You So" candidate of 2012. Sure, she'll play the part of loyal Democrat on Tuesday night during her speech. She has to. But rest assured, this isn't the last we've seen of her.


Bigfoot discovered.

I dunno. I sorta think it looks like an elephant took a dump and gave it dentures.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Pelosi is so screwed.

Sen. Jim DeMint and Rep. Jeb Hensarling are using youtube in a pretty ingenious way these days. Their designation of October 1st as Energy Freedom Day is exactly the right strategy in order to paint Democrats into a corner. If there isn't going to be any new drilling then Republicans are going to make sure everyone knows it is the fault of the Democrats.

As many of you know, unless Congress renews the drilling ban, the OCS and oil shale available out West become available for drilling. This means AMERICAN oil companies can begin the process to tap these basins of oil and increase our country's energy supply.

Increased supply = lower gas prices. There is no denying that, no matter how much Democrats try to distort the debate.

So by popularizing Energy Freedom Day, Demint and Hensarling are making it the responsibility of Democrats to choose between their own special interests or what the majority of Americans want....more oil.

This is going to be a win-win for those who want America to become more energy independent. Democrats have two choices: Yea or Nay. If Democrats give in then the country moves forward on drilling. More drilling means more jobs and lower gas prices. If Democrats vote to continue the ban they at least provide supporters of energy independence a political opportunity that will provide voters a clear choice on Nov4.

Major props to Sen. DeMint and Rep. Hensarling, as well as their staff members, for moving forward aggressively and cornering the opposition into a most uncomfortable corner.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Did you hear Obama is a celebrity?

Actually, this is REALLY well done. As a friend stated, it really exhibits the evolution of the McCain communications shop. It combines the celebrity message with the inexperience message in a comedic manner that will keep up the viral trend on McCain's videos. Major props.

Love the Wayne's World clip at the end.

Taking off....WAY too fast.

We here at 3BP wanted to send a special thank you to and Jim Geraghty at NRO's CampaignSpot for linking to this blog last week. When we started blogging just a couple months ago we knew we wanted to be another voice in the world of campaign/political/cultural analysis. We just never imagined we'd get so popular so quickly.

Thanks to Hot Air and the National Review hits have jumped through the roof with over 6,500 hits just last week.

We'll do our best to keep on blogging and thinking of new and original perspectives on our political culture. And we'll do our best to avoid being, as a compatriot told me just last week, acutely underprepared for blogging popularity.


Give me a moment to weep...

I just learned some new information about my favorite choice for VP. It sucks.
"Over the opposition of oil companies, Republican Gov. Sarah Palin and Alaska’s Legislature last year approved a major increase in taxes on the oil industry — a step that has generated stunning new wealth for the state as oil prices soared. …

BP Alaska, which runs Prudhoe Bay, said earlier this year that it had delayed the development in the western region of the North Slope as a result of the tax. ConocoPhillips cited the same reason for scrapping a $300 million refinery project.

'What the tax has done is take away all the upside,' said Doug Suttles, president of BP Alaska. The U.K.-based oil company paid more than $500 million in taxes to Alaska last quarter — far more than it earned in profits from Alaskan oil, according to Suttles.

Investment dollars are flowing instead to places that have a better return, like the massive deep-water projects offshore in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, where ConocoPhillips said the government take equals less than 50 percent of the barrel."
Now, I'm happy to wait and see what Palin supporters have to say about how she possibly could support such a tax, but the problem is it stands against the very principles of free market and what it means to be a quality conservative.

I understand that as Governor sometimes one has to compromise one's position in order to get things done. That may be the case here and I would love to hear from some Palin supporters that can elaborate on her decision making process regarding this issue.

In the meantime, I'm gonna go work on accepting the fact Pawlenty will be the choice.


UPDATE: I was just emailed an explanation of this whole issue. It seems things are a little more complicated than the article above explains. Sadly, at the speed the blogosphere moves it is going to take a lot of work to ease concerns from economic conservatives. Here is the analysis I received:
"The Alaskan tax system basically, because it has a progressive rate, basically says that oil companies can make about the same amount of net profit per barrel of oil whether the price is $80 or $120 per barrel. It's not exactly the same, but it's pretty close.

Now, there is an incentive inherent in this to drill more. Drilling more means more supply. More supply means lower oil prices. Lower oil prices means a lower tax rate per barrel. But, and this is the important part, an oil company in theory would make more money (more total profits) through more drilling because they'd be selling more barrels of oil.

As an aside, there's also an incentive towards greater efficiency. The tax takes effect after something like $25 or $30, which is considered the break even cost for a barrel of oil. If a company can figure out how to be more efficient and how to retrieve that oil for $20 per barrel, for example, then there's an additional savings.

By contrast, a windfall profits tax addresses those total profits. The idea is to look at how much a company makes in total profits for a quarter and, depending upon conditions, to assess an additional tax.

Now, I still think, as a matter of political perception, that the language to use is that Palin is against oil companies getting per barrel tax incentives that they got at $60 or $80 per barrel. But, if the oil companies drill and prices go down, then those tax incentives or rebates come back into force. The idea is that everyone wins: If oil companies drill more, then prices go down. If they sell more barrels, then their total profit is better. And, if the state still gets its money (lower tax per barrel of oil but more barrels of oil).

Oil companies will say that it provides a disincentive to explore, but the reality is that the federal government won't allow them to explore where the oil is. If that obstacle were removed, then there most assuredly is an incentive to explore, as oil companies would realize even greater total profits through greater supply.

It won't be Hillary.

It seems much of the talk over the course of the Olympics will be focused on who the hell will be the Vice Presidential nominee for each Party. Well, over the weekend a story was released and highlighted on Mark Halperin's blog talking about the announcement that Hillary has been given her own night at the Convention.

According to the DNC, Michelle Obama will highlight Monday, HRC on Tuesday and the VP pick on Wednesday. This means Tuesday, the night traditionally reserved for a keynote speaker(it was Obama in 2004), has been surrendered by the Obama campaign. That's how much power Clinton still maintains. I'd imagine this was part of some deal between the two camps in order to make HRC back off her consideration of asking her delegates to put her name into contention "so their voices can be heard".

What this also means is that Hillary Clinton won't be the Vice Presidential nominee for Barack Obama. The DNC would never feel so confident as to release a schedule like this without final coordination with the Obama campaign. Remember, the two organizations are seemingly one in the same.

So the question now becomes, when will Obama announce Evan Bayh as his running mate?

UPDATE: Well it seems the Dems have named Mark Warner to be the keynote speaker. Clearly they are trying to send a signal that VA is important to Obama's efforts. Unfortunately for them no one will give a rat's ass about Warner as every eye is going to be on Hillary.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Now what?

The Olympics have begun. We're now in an interesting time in the Presidential campaign. Without question, we are going to witness a slowdown in coverage of the race as coverage of the Olympics increases. Afterall, there is only so much space on a newspaper and minutes in a news broadcast. Obama is even going on vacation, but that doesn't mean he'll shut up.

[sarcasm]Take a moment to grieve.[/sarcasm]

So now we get to see how the public responds to this slowdown. Political hacks will still be scouring the blogs and newspapers for any bit of information, but more often than not we'll just be getting scraps from the campaigns as they realize any major announcements just aren't worth doing.

But that doesn't mean political analysts and bloggers necessarily WANT to slow down. People like me, and then the ones that actually make a serious effort at this stuff, need material. That means this should be a particularly tenuous time for campaign staff as they relax juuuusssst a bit, but realize that any small miscue will be made a much bigger deal in the blogosphere and set the tone as each Party heads into their Conventions.

The moral of the story? Campaign staff, stay on top of your game. Don't play the part of the Hessians getting run over by Washington's army after crossing the Delaware on a quiet Christmas Eve.


Obama's people submit this:

And in response we have:

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Elect Babyface!

FirstRead reports that the McCain campaign is going to make a very good decision awfully soon:
"Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has spoken with the McCain campaign about a “prominent speaking role” at the convention, possibly the keynote, according to Louisiana Republican Party Chairman Roger Villere."
I've been pushing for this for quite some time. Jindal would be a great VP candidate if it weren't for his age. He's a very solid conservative who has accomplished more in his time serving Louisiana than the Democratic nominee for President ever has. However, his age may be a serious turn off to voters.

Jindal is one of the few bright young stars of the GOP. The opportunity to keynote the convention will propel him into being a leading contender in 2012 if McCain falters.

Of course, I don't even think he's old enough to have kids.

Someone forgot their tourniquet.

Some of the most interesting polling numbers I've ran across lately have come from an 8/5 Rasmussen survey. They asked 'who do you trust more' between McCain and Obama on a number of issues. A sampling of the results:

Who do you trust more on national security?

John McCain 52%
Barack Obama 40%

Who do you trust more on the War in Iraq?

John McCain 51%
Barack Obama 39%

Who do you trust more on immigration?

John McCain 45%
Barack Obama 36%

Who do you trust more on energy issues?

John McCain 46%
Barack Obama 42%

Who do you trust more on the economy?

John McCain 45%
Barack Obama 45%

Who do you trust more on taxes?

John McCain 47%
Barack Obama 40%

Who do you trust more to balance the federal budget?

John McCain 43%
Barack Obama 40%

Who do you trust more on social security?

John McCain 44%
Barack Obama 38%

Clearly, McCain is performing at a level far beyond what many would have expected just a short 3 weeks ago. Obama's Invincibility Tour '08 ran through Europe in a fashion many pundits expected to make victory that much more unreachable for McCain. But look at Obama now. Yep, some national polls show Obama still in the lead...some don't. But more important than any national poll are the state polls...and there McCain is looking better than ever.

McCain's recent endeavours have shown a clear and consistent strategy to chip away at Obama's popularity. With an understanding that the voters needed for a GOP victory are those who need reassured McCain isn't the next George Bush, the McCain campaign has done a great job of late hitting Obama where it hurts...his celebrity.

Obama clearly has needed to do something to stop the bleeding. Perhaps he thought unveiling an energy policy that sums up to yelling "free money for everyone!" would do the trick. Clearly, it hasn't.

The presumptive Democratic nominee missed his chance yesterday. Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana hosted Obama throughout the day. Bayh is someone the Obama campaign has leaked to the media as a likely contender for the Vice Presidency. From what I've seen, the subsequent reviews of Bayh were for the most part very positive. His selection would not break the most important rule of selecting a Vice President: Don't pick someone who will hurt you.

Obama could have made the safe pick yesterday and provided himself a slew of positive media coverage for the rest of the week leading up to the Olympic media slowdown. Now, it's too late. McCain will go into the next 16 days of the Olympics with the momentum.

And Obama has no one but himself to blame.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

What the f#%$&* are they thinking!?!?!?

The past two days we've come across articles/stories about Republican Governors praising Sen. Obama. Why? The gut reaction would be that these Governors clearly are breaking from the McCain team and going off-message. Some surely will write that these Governors are hurting their chances to become VP and that they better play ball. Some will say that McCain's campaign needs to get the GOP message under control.

The Governors? Sarah Palin of Alaska and Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota. These two also happen to be two of the top three favorites to get McCain's VP nod on

Here is what Palin had to say on Tuesday:
“I am pleased to see Senator Obama acknowledge the huge potential Alaska’s natural gas reserves represent in terms of clean energy and sound jobs,” Palin says in the release. “The steps taken by the Alaska State Legislature this past week demonstrate that we are ready, willing and able to supply the energy our nation needs.”
And an article about what Pawlenty had to say today:
"Pawlenty said that Republicans such as Ronald Reagan had ideas, but he added that in recent years, 'The Republican idea factory has seen a little stagnant.'

Pawlenty offered positive comments about Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, saying 'people gravitate when you have something positive to say.'"
Now the question is, why do we have two serious candidates for the VP nomination saying good things about Obama at a point when McCain has had his opponent on the ropes?

McCain's people know the celebrity ad worked (1,687,677 views on youtube can't be wrong). A good chunk of swing voters clearly were getting sick of Obama and this strategy finally put them over the edge...but these few voters will only stay away from Obama if McCain pulls them to his side.

So what does the McCain campaign do? They show GOPers as the good guys willing to play ball with the other side. This is a message that hits home with swing voters. They are hitting a couple singles to test the message with higher profile Governors working the message as discussed above...and McCain will now hit the swing voters with ads focusing on his independence from the Party line.

In other words: These two speaking out at this specific time about Obama was completely coordinated by the McCain campaign.

Glad to see the campaign running on all cylinders and with momentum into the media slowdown that will be the Olympics.


Update: An ad released today by the McCain campaign seems to validate an aspect of my theory, that his campaign must now pull out the stops to show his independence and attract the swing voters. Well there isn't a much better way to do that than letting the opposing Party speak for itself.

Friday, August 1, 2008

My girlfriend is famous.

I said we're allowed to talk about pop culture on this blog, so that means nationally televised reality shows are fair game.

And my girlfriend was on one.

Here is a screenshot of Sandi on 'Hopkins' that was seen last night on ABC.

Oh. My. God.

"I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!!!"

From CNN:
"Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) on Friday announced an 'Emergency Economic Plan' that would give families a stimulus check of $1,000 each, funded in part by what his presidential campaign calls 'windfall profits from Big Oil.'"
Sweet holy crap. This man went to HARVARD! Does he not realize that taxes applied to companies only force those companies to pass the costs onto consumers? Either Obama is completely without any principle whatsoever or he is the stupidest man to ever attend Harvard.


UPDATE: A friend informs me that this plan is actually nothing new from Obama. In fact, back in June my friend wrote:
"Obama's proposal is to impose a huge tax on oil companies, and use the proceeds to subsidize energy costs of low income folks. The first half of that proposal will greatly increase energy costs.

The entire thing boils down to a transfer of wealth and increasing the dependence of people on government, but -- and this is the slick part -- using oil companies as a middleman to shield the government from the populace's wrath.

The middle class will be upset about $6/gallon gas, BUT their ire will be directed more at oil companies, than at Obama's government."