Saturday, November 01, 2008
Dick Cheney stumps for McCain/Palin
For Atlanta voters, 10 hour lines await
Friday, October 31, 2008
Obama infomercial tops network prime-time ratings
American Stories, American Solutions: 30 Minute Special
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Barack Obama's campaign "infomercial" was the most-watched telecast in U.S. prime time on Wednesday, drawing an "American Idol"-size audience that easily eclipsed even the climax to baseball's World Series.
More than 33.5 million viewers tuned in to watch the Democratic presidential nominee's paid 30-minute message, aired on three major broadcast networks and four smaller channels, Nielsen Media Research reported on Thursday.
The three big networks alone, CBS, NBC and Fox, accounted for 25.5 million viewers combined -- 1.2 million more than they drew in the same half hour a week ago, Nielsen said.
By comparison, 19.8 million viewers watched the conclusion to baseball's World Series championship as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Tampa Bay Rays. The game, ranking as the night's No. 2 broadcast, was carried by Fox following Obama's multi-network commercial.
Gallup Poll day after the ad (and Rasmussen survey)
Gallup ROCKETS in the wake of the Obamamerical
Likely Traditional (Drudge Version)
Obama 51 +1
McCain 43 -2
Likely Expanded (Reality)
Obama 52 +1
McCain 43 -1
Obama; 52 +2
McCain: 41 -1
There was Rasmussen Data this morning on the impact of the advertisement.
From the Sub-section on Rasmussen...
Ad Make You More/Less Likely to Vote for Obama?
More Likely: 54%
Less Likely 24%
Among McCain Voters: 8% More Likely
Among Conservatives: 39% More Likely
Among Republicans: 21% More Likely
Among Men: 50% More likely
Among Women: 59% More Likely
Among 65+: 57% More Likely
Among Whites: 50% More Likely
Arianna On Larry King: Talks Obama's Chances, "Spreading The Wealth" Attacks, Khalidi Smears
Arianna appeared on Larry King Thursday night, where she discussed the presidential race with Ben Stein, Paul Begala and Michael Medved. Watch videos of her appearance below.
'the retooling of America,'
Dan Cooper, founder of Cooper Firearms, resigned his position with the company after a wave of condemnation from gun owners who don’t believe Obama’s assurances that he plans to protect gun rights.
The article “sparked outrage from some gun owners and bloggers, including an open letter on a blog called Firearms and Freedom, urging people to boycott the company’s products,” USA Today said. “Many gun enthusiasts believe Obama will try to restrict their right to bear arms, although he has said he respects the Second Amendment.”
Five Reasons Why the Obama Infomercial was Worth the Cost
Although only time will tell, it appears that the Obama infomercial accomplished exactly what it needed to do: soothing skittish white undecided voters without alienating current supporters.
1. With a set evocative of the Oval Office, Obama's presence in the piece served as a preview to what it would look like if he were to be elected as President. By providing a chance for the still uneasy undecideds to envision this future, it will likely work to move some of those voters out of their reluctance. Despite the McCain campaign's increasingly strident assertions to the contrary, Obama gave every appearance of being more than "ready" to step into the role of a world leader. 2. By showing numerous photos of Obama interacting with white working class Americans of different ages (in addition to black and Latino Americans), the infomercial leveraged the power of visual imagery to contextualize Obama as "one of us" within the minds of those voters. This is a welcome and much-needed change from advertisements by the campaign that have, up until now, sometimes focused too much on words alone to convey their messages. In addition, the narratives within the piece evoked emotional response and connection -- again, very welcome and somewhat different than the frequently more conceptual and cognitive appeal of previous Obama campaign advertising.
3. For those who resonate to the cognitive, the infomercial also clearly presented (again) specifics of Obama's plans to address the most pressing issues on the minds of many voters. If you believe their words, undecided voters tend to respond well to specifics and to talk about "needing more information" when asked about why they continue to be undecided.
4. If, however, you do not believe the words of the undecided voters tell the whole story, the piece was still effective. By any objective measure, Obama came across as reasonable, knowledgeable and -- most importantly for the sake of television -- likeable. As anyone who is familiar with media knows, that is the primary goal of any television appearance. People seldom remember more than one point someone makes (if they even recall one) when they appear on television, but they are strongly affected by how the person comes across.
5. Within the biographical parts of the piece, Obama's life story was reiterated as epitomizing the American dream. Certainly it can be said that it would take someone very determined to continue to characterize Obama as a "terrorist" within their own minds after watching the infomercial -- and those people would never vote for him anyway. Additionally, when Obama talked about his mother's death and about his own lack of perfection -- saying even "I will not be a perfect president" -- his humanity came through powerfully.
The Obama infomercial was a risk -- but the piece will likely go down in history as yet another way that the Obama campaign has forever changed the face of political campaigning through its creative use of media.
The U.S. District Court in D.C. ruled today that Vice President Dick Cheney will have to let his deputy chief of staff, Claire O'Donnell, give testimony in a lawsuit over his records.
Cheney, with his well-known passion for secrecy, had argued that a vice president need only preserve records central to his job as the official who presides over the U.S. Senate or records relating to specific tasks assigned by the president. That would narrow the pile considerably.
Read the whole story here.
"confusing" and "unfortunate"
WATCH: Bill Kristol Says You Can't Trust NYT On "Daily Show"
Bill Kristol knocked his own paper, the New York Times, on "The Daily Show" last night, and repeated his prediction that John McCain will win the White House on Tuesday.
Jon Stewart joked with the error-prone Kristol, who he has mocked before, "You can't look at past performance as a predictor, otherwise you wouldn't be, obviously, still a pundit."
"You're reading The New York Times too much, Jon," Kristol told Stewart, only for Stewart to remind him that he works there. "Oh, it's a very fine newspaper — on one day of the week."
Kristol also predicted that McCain would "win huge," but that even if Barack Obama does pull it off, he will be a "conventional" president." LinkHere
AZ-Pres: Neck and neck, and check out 2010
Fri Oct 31, 2008 at 08:48:17 AM PDT
Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 10/28-30. Likely voters. MoE 4% (No trend lines)
McCain (R) 48
Obama (D) 47
Early voters (17 percent of sample)
McCain (R) 42
Obama (D) 54
I can't believe we may actually win Arizona. And I have a bonus treat for you guys:
If the 2010 election for U.S. Senate were held today for whom would you vote for if the choices were between Janet Napolitano the Democrat and John McCain the Republican?
McCain (R) 45
Napolitano (D) 53
Janet Napolitano is Arizona's governor, currently serving her second term. Her favorability rating of 67-29 is higher than Palin's, which is 65-35 in a poll we'll be releasing in a few hours. Napolitano's job approval rating of 69-21 similarly beats Palin's 61-37. Palin may be giving the Rick Lowrys of the world starbursts, but Napolitano is wowing them with competent governance, and it looks like Arizonans wouldn't mind sending her to Washington instead of McCain.
Update: McCain forced to campaign in Arizona on Monday. I bet he wishes he could spend the evening in Pennsylvania, Ohio, or Florida.
"Daily Show" Investigates ACORN, Community Organizing
Noooooooooo,you mean the black population are voting, dang
Via John Cole, the Politico reports on Georgia Sen. Saxby Chambliss' candid assessment of what motivates Republicans in his state:
The Republican is outwardly confident, but there's urgency in his voice as he tours North Georgia, trying to boost turnout in his predominately white base: "The other folks are voting," he bluntly tells supporters.
Just in case anyone was confused about who those "other folks" are, Chambliss gave this quote New York Times:
The development is not lost on Mr. Chambliss. "There has always been a rush to the polls by African-Americans early," he said at the square in Covington, a quick stop on a bus tour as the campaign entered its final week. He predicted the crowds of early voters would motivate Republicans to turn out. "It has also got our side energized, they see what is happening," he said.
Former Sen. Max Cleland, who was beaten by Chambliss in 2002, expressed concern in an interview with the Huffington Post about a "white backlash" to Barack Obama in the South. But he also touted the "historic numbers in terms of registration, African-Americans and young people" that is changing the region's political landscape in "fundamental" ways.
"without any questions, a terrorist group."
It is important to understand which individuals and organizations Obama has been associated with, the refrain usually goes, as it is reflective of his foreign policy as a whole.
But if that is indeed the standard by which voters are to judge the candidates, than McCain has some questions of his own.
During the late 1990s, the Senator supported and reportedly helped arm an organization that, while eventually tolerated by the U.S. foreign policy establishment, was accused of terrorist activities and allegedly had ties to al Qaeda.
During the late stages of the Balkan War, the Kosovo Liberation Army was known for committing incredible atrocities in its efforts to facilitate Kosovo's independence from Yugoslavia. The guerrilla group often was responding to acts of violence committed against its own people. But its tactics were, nevertheless, viewed as condemnable: abductions and murders, systematic burning and looting of homes, and harassment and intimidation of Yugoslav officials.
President Clinton's special envoy to the Balkans, Robert Gelbard, described the KLA in 1998 as, "without any questions, a terrorist group."
Eventually, the KLA went from being criticized for threatening a fragile peace process to, gradually, being recognized as a military force that had popular roots within the Albanian community and a shared mission with America. But within the United States, the group was never publicly praised and often considered dangerous.
"As far as I know, no one ever turned around and said, 'these were freedom fighters and I support them,'" said Fred Abrahams, who documented the Balkans War for Human Rights Watch.
"We still feel like our vote was stolen,"
The Democrat embarked on a series of events to boost the candidacy of Barack Obama, with sights set on Florida's 27 electoral votes.
Gore's visit to Florida, a state still up for grabs, marked the first time he's hit the campaign trail for Obama since endorsing him in June and speaking at the Democratic National Convention in August.
Gore and his wife, Tipper, planned another rally in Pompano Beach later in the day. In Palm Beach County, voters have not forgotten what happened eight years ago. The county's confusing ballot in 2000 was blamed for people mistakenly voting for third-party candidate Pat Buchanan instead of Gore.
"We still feel like our vote was stolen," said Mary Phillips, 45.
"This election is personal to us," said West Palm Beach Mayor Lois Frankel. "We know it was the curse of the butterfly ballot that brought the chaos to the world. ... We're not going to let what happened eight years ago happen again." LinkHere
Eagleburger Blisters Palin: "Of Course" She's Not Ready
Lawrence Eagleburger, who served as Secretary of State under George H.W. Bush and whose endorsement is often trumpeted by McCain, said on Thursday that the Alaska governor is not only unprepared to take over the job on a moment's notice but, even after some time in office, would only amount to an "adequate" commander in chief.
"And I devoutly hope that [she] would never be tested," he added for good measure -- referring both to Palin's policy dexterity and the idea of McCain not making it through his time in office.
Former Reagan chief of staff Ken Duberstein told CNN's Fareed Zakaria this week he intends to vote for Democrat Barack Obama on Tuesday.
Duberstein said he was influenced by another prominent Reagan official - Colin Powell - in his decision.
Read the whole story here.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Rachel Maddow Interviews Obama
Here is the first part of the interview.
George Will Castigates McCain, Palin, Defends Obama On Campaign Financing
It all begins with a lede that neatly stitches McCain and Bush together:
From the invasion of Iraq to the selection of Sarah Palin, carelessness has characterized recent episodes of faux conservatism. Tuesday's probable repudiation of the Republican Party will punish characteristics displayed in the campaign's closing days.
Will's harshest seeming terms, and the bulk of his attention, seems to go to Palin. This is not surprising -- he's been one of the godfathers of the anti-Palin, scent-of-common-sense conservative fringe for some time now. And, really, one would hope that Palin's inability to nail down the precise duties of the Vice Presidency would set Will's teeth on edge. Still, it's refreshing to see Will put it in these terms: "Perhaps Palin's confusion about the office for which she is auditioning comes from listening to its current occupant. Dick Cheney, the foremost practitioner of this administration's constitutional carelessness in aggrandizing executive power, regularly attends the Senate Republicans' Tuesday luncheons."
Will calls out McCain for his "history of reducing controversies to cartoons," and then, with a flourish, all but throws McCain's legacy under the bus:
SMITH: Do you think John McCain agrees with you?
So, Joe The Plumber was out on the trail with John McCain today, apparently giving the thumbs up to someone in the crowd who felt that an Obama Presidency would bring about the end of Israel. From Raw Story:
The Ohio plumber, who has no license and is actually named Samuel Wurzelbacher, spoke at a McCain campaign event in Columbus Monday. A McCain supporter asked if "a vote for Obama is a vote for the death of Israel." JTP hardly batted an eye.
"I'll go ahead and agree with you on that," Wurzelbacher said.
It's all a part of Joe the Plumber's "Maybe I'm A Foreign Policy Expert, But Anyway, You Should Go Out And Get Your Own Opinions On Things Instead Of Listening To Mine, Even Though I'm Going To Keep Opining If You Give Me Half A Chance, And Anyway, I Don't Even Really Know What John McCain's Position Is On Anything Anyway, And Probably I Should Be Snaking A Sink Trap Or Something, Instead Of Dragging Myself All Over The Country Making Statements Which I Then Sort Of Disavow A Few Minutes Later Anyway, Who Knows?" Tour of 2008!
Honestly, it's like the 24 Hour News has finally reached the 25th Hour or something.
Anyway, five minutes with Joe The Plumber had Shepard Smith so frustrated that the Fox anchor felt compelled to issue a disclaimer, immediately following the segment, pushing back on any notion that Obama would mean the "death of Israel," saying: "I just want to make this 100 percent perfectly clear -- Barack Obama has said repeatedly and demonstrated repeatedly that Israel will always be a friend of the United States, no matter what happens once he becomes President of the United States. His words." Smith later added, "The rest of it -- man...some things -- it just gets frightening sometimes. We'll be right back." I haven't seen Shep this broken up about the state of the world since Katrina.
Meanwhile, let's remember that after a year of trying to figure out what their campaign is about, the McCain camp has basically pinned all their hopes to the avatar of Joe The Plumber, a random dude who says, "I know just enough about foreign policy to probably be dangerous...I have no idea where John McCain's position is...I honestly want people to go out and find their own reasons. I tell people not to listen to everyone else's opinion. I'm not going to have them start listening to mine." His words. Such as they are. LinkHere
Rachel Maddow Interviews Obama: A Preview
Maddow and Obama also discussed national security issues, with Maddow looking to Obama to suggest how he would approach homeland security vulnerabilities connected to declining infrastructure:
Oh, this is funny! Here's the entirety of what the paper has to say about Sarah Palin:
Since her announcement Aug. 29 as Sen. John McCain's running mate on the Republican ticket, Gov. Sarah Palin has dominated the political headlines. From her personal life to her sudden rise into the national spotlight, America and the media cannot seem to get enough Palin.
While the clamor over Palin has been revealing and entertaining, it's time for voters to focus on the choice we have to lead the United States for the next four years.
We endorse John McCain as that leader.
As many have turned a tabloid eye to McCain's running mate in the weeks leading up to the election, we urge voters to remember that McCain, not Palin, is the Republican candidate for president, and it's because of McCain's proven leadership and integrity we urge Alaska and the Mat-Su to vote McCain.
I don't know! That seems a little like damnation by means of some faint praise! But make no mistake, the Frontiersman is all but clear about what they think of Obama. In the paper's eyes, Obama is a candidate who will "[toe] the Democratic Party line," and thus enable the "ultra-liberal Pelosi-bots in Congress." Honestly? That's some top flight snark. Additionally, they call out Obama for being a "wimp," and praise McCain for having the "military background and the experience to know that whatever anyone thinks about our war on terror in Iraq, that defeat is not an option."
Editor and Publisher has more on the endorsement. LinkHere
The Economist Issues 'Wholehearted' Endorsement Of Obama
Since I received a spate of emails wondering how The Economist would come down with their Presidential endorsement, I figured I might as well end the suspense: it's Obama.
Released today, The Economist's endorsement is titled, "It's Time," and encourages America to "take a chance and make Barack Obama the next leader of the free world." That's the overall tenor of their support: the acknowledgment of a gamble, yet one they recommend with few misgivings:
The Economist does not have a vote, but if it did, it would cast it for Mr Obama. We do so wholeheartedly: the Democratic candidate has clearly shown that he offers the better chance of restoring America's self-confidence. But we acknowledge it is a gamble. Given Mr Obama's inexperience, the lack of clarity about some of his beliefs and the prospect of a stridently Democratic Congress, voting for him is a risk. Yet it is one America should take, given the steep road ahead.
The magazine does not take some dogmatic anti-McCain stance, saying that "selection of Mr McCain as the Republicans' candidate was a powerful reason to reconsider" voting to keep the GOP in charge of the Executive Branch, despite the "incompetence, cronyism and extremism of the Bush presidency." But the magazine makes their stance on McCain clear in a section that's titled, "If only the real John McCain had been running": LinkHere
Campbell Brown Rips Dole's "Godless" Ad: Reclaim Your Dignity!
Elizabeth Dole's "Godless" attack ad against her opponent in North Carolina's U.S. Senate race keeps getting hammered in the press.
The Huffington Post put a spotlight on the negative -- and factually bankrupt -- spot on Wednesday, while Democrat Kay Hagan, the target of the ad, forcefully objected to its portrayal of her as "godless."
Wednesday night, CNN's Campbell Brown delivered an impassioned criticism of Dole's tactics.
While conceding that politics is "not for the faint of heart," Brown nevertheless singled out Dole's ad as the dubious "winner" among all the dirty attacks circulating during the final week of campaigning.
"The information in this ad is so ridiculously misleading, and yet Senator Dole is standing by it and continuing to raise questions about Hagan's so-called godlessness on the campaign trail," Brown said. "Is this really what it has come down to? We are fighting two wars, our economy is a disaster, and Senator Dole's message to voters is to falsely accuse her opponent of not believing in God?" LinkHere
MCCAIN BUSES IN 4,000 KIDS TO FILL CROWD...
MORE CAMPAIGN UPDATES: Obama Targets Florida, Virginia, Missouri... McCain In Ohio... Candidates On Low GDP Report... Obama: 'Direct Result Of Bush's Wall Street First, Main Street Last Policies'... McCain's Economic Advisor: "We'll Clean Up Wall Street"... Clinton Comes Out With Obama For First Time Wednesday Night: "This Man Should Be Our President''...
Barack Obama Infomercial Ratings: 33.6 Million Watch Across All Networks, Tops World Series
Obama's 30-minute primetime infomercial was seen by 33.6 million viewers across seven networks -- including CBS, NBC, Fox, Univision, MSNBC, BET and TV One.
That's 70% more people than watched the conclusion of the World Series last night on Fox (19.8 million). Clearly, Obama vs. McCain is more compelling to viewers this week than Phillies vs. Rays.
Nielsen estimates that roughly 71% of viewers were white, 17% of viewers were black and 15% were Hispanic.*
Read the whole story here.
Stephen Colbert Endorses (But Does Not Support) Barack Obama (VIDEO)
Startling Stat: At Least 46 Papers That Endorsed Bush in 2004 Have Now Switched to Obama
NEW YORK As the Obama-Biden ticket continues to lead in daily newspaper endorsements by roughly 220 to 90, what is most startling is the Democratic ticket winning over so many editorial boards that backed President Bush in 2004.
Obama has picked up at least 46 switchers -- including the Chicago Tribune and three of the top dailies in Texas -- and we suspect the total is much higher as we have not identified how every paper decided in 2004. Some have revealed they have never backed a Democrat for president, or at least for the past several decades or 100 years (the Joplin Globe in Missouri that to declare the latter).
The McCain-Palin ticket remains stuck at four switchers so far.
In addition, many papers that backed Bush in 2004 (such as the Indianapolis Star) are sitting out the race this year.... LinkHere
By PAULINE JELINEK
Associated Press Writer
No one knows for sure, but auditors think the U.S.
has paid well over $6 billion to private security
companies who've been guarding diplomats, troops,
Iraqi officials and reconstruction workers in Iraq.
The money amounts to about 12 percent of the $50
billion Americans are paying for reconstruction in
the country, said Special Inspector General for Iraq
Reconstruction Stuart Bowen.
The figure, included in a report being released by
Bowen's office Thursday, is likely to be taken as
the most authoritative accounting so far of what it
has cost taxpayers to provide private security since
2003 in the violence-plagued nation.
There are likely more contractors he has yet to count
and so the $6 billion is almost certainly not the full
picture, he said in an interview Wednesday. LinkHere
New Obama ad questions choice of Palin
Palin's 2012 talk leaves McCain aide speechless
AMAZING: 6th, 7th Graders Rap About The Election, "You Can Vote However You Like"
A Look Into The Mind Of White Working-Class Voters (VIDEO)
Big Biz Still For GOP
What They Got Away With
A look at the CEOs who walk off with mountains of money
Three articles from the Wall Street Journalshow the strange myopia of businesses and business groups when it comes to politics. One article detailed how big retailers (Home Depot, Wal-Mart, Lowe's, Target) are warning employees about the possibility that a Democratic sweep could give unions the upper hand (translation: vote Republican!). A second describes how the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is mounting a huge $35 million campaign—twice the amount it spent in 2006 Congressional races—to support "almost exclusively Republicans in contested Senate races." And Federal Express CEO Fred Smith gave an interview to the editorial page in which he endorsed Sen. John McCain: "Because I agree with him on trade, taxes, energy and health care."
Let's take each in turn. Big retailers such as Home Depot, Wal-Mart, and Target, the Journal reports, are freaked out that Obama and a Democratic Congress would pass the Employee Free Choice Act, "which would do away with secret balloting and allow unions to form if a majority of employees sign cards favoring unionization." Now, don't get me wrong. EFCA may be a disaster for retailers. But of all the woes facing companies—the credit crunch, crappy growth, a disastrous job market, a lost decade in the stock market—unions are the least of their problems. So far this year, legions of retailers have gone bankrupt—Steve & Barrys, Linens'n'Things, the Ponderosa and Bonanza restaurant chains—victims of excessively optimistic projections, poor expansion choices, mismanagement, and horrific capital structures. Unions had nothing to do with their failure.
Retailers that survive face a bigger challenge. We've just concluded an economic expansion in which median incomes failed to rise. The people who shop at Wal-Mart, Home Depot, and Target are basically making the same amount of money they were in 1999. There are a host of reasons why wages failed to rise in this expansion, among them: globalization, outsourcing, and a decline in the educational attainment of workers. But unions aren't one of them. What's more, long-term stock charts put the lie to the binary concept—Republican, anti-big-labor good, Democrat, pro-big-labor bad. Check out these charts of Home Depot (up about five fold in the Clinton years, down about 60 percent in the Bush years), or Wal-Mart (boom in the Clinton years and drift in the Bush years, or Target (ditto).
Now, with consumer confidence at a record low, credit difficult to come by, and demand shrinking, retailers are facing a bleak outlook. And they're worried about the prospect of greater unionization at some point in the future?
Obama Charlie Gibson Interview: Obama Says His Cabinet Would Be Bipartisan (VIDEO)
Obama told ABC News' Charlie Gibson that he didn't have a list of people he wanted to bring into the government but said "I've got some pretty good ideas about the senior Cabinet of government officials that I think could perform very well for the country. ... I have a good idea of who the candidates would be."
Obama said he would reach across the aisle on a range of issues, from energy independence to health care to education.
Keep reading here.
Obama's Daily Show Interview
Barack Obama continued his media blitz tonight with an appearance on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Obama's appearance comes on the heels of his half hour long infomercial which ran in prime time tonight on several major networks, as well as some cable networks. Watch clips of Obama from his interview, including the candidate conceding the "Sean Hannity vote," and how Obama has been undergoing therapy to ensure that his white half doesn't prevent him from voting for himself. LinkHere
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
American Stories, American Solutions
New Ad Mocks GOP Skills At Disaster Management
McCain's Last Ditch Effort: Tying Obama To Muslim World
The latest salvo came Wednesday afternoon, when the Republican nominee released a web ad placing Obama's visage in front of an outline of Iran, and presenting aspects of the Senator's foreign policy alongside music traditionally associated with a Muslim call to prayer.
Questions About "Overseas" Donor Who Gave McCain $70,000 In One Day
October 29, 2008
Big campaign donors typically come with deep pockets and influence. But in Illinois this election cycle, no one not running for office himself has given more to the nation's federal campaigns than Shi Sheng Hao of Roselle, a virtual unknown in business and political circles.Before September 2007, Hao's name had never appeared in the 15-year-old federal database of campaign contributors. Since then, however, his donations have topped $120,000 — including $70,100 on a single June day to Republican presidential candidate John McCain.Over the same time frame, a network of Hao relatives has kicked in more. The take from this group over the last 13 months exceeds $269,000, a small amount to Democrats but most of it to McCain and the Republican National Committee, records show.Hao didn't register to vote at the northwest suburban address attached to his donations until October 2007, a month after he wrote his first political check, $25,000 to the RNC. LinkHere
Burn pit at Balad raises health concerns
An open-air “burn pit” at the largest U.S. base in Iraq may have exposed tens of thousands of troops, contractors and Iraqis to cancer-causing dioxins, poisons such as arsenic and carbon monoxide, and hazardous medical waste, documentation gathered by Military Times shows.
The billowing black plume from the burn pit at 15-square-mile Joint Base Balad, the central logistics hub for U.S. forces in Iraq, wafts continually over living quarters and the base combat support hospital, sources say.
Ad: President Palin Is "Our Greatest Fear"
"These are troubled times in a volatile world. With unprecedented crises at home and abroad, we need sound judgment and a steady hand to lead the most powerful nation on Earth," the ad begins, echoing some of the gravitas-laden ads targeting Barack Obama's inexperience. But Elfman's ad takes a twist: "John McCain's age and continuing battle with cancer makes the liklihood of him not completing his term higher than any president in American history. President Sarah Palin. Think about it." LinkHere
Palin Target Of New Ethics Complaint
EARLY VOTING AVALANCHE
From the ABC/Washington Post tracking poll:
More than twelve million voters have already cast ballots in the presidential contest, according to one estimate, and new data from the Washington Post-ABC News tracking poll shows these voters breaking Democratic by a wide margin.
Among those who said they have already voted at an early voting location or sent in an absentee ballot, Barack Obama picked up 60 percent of the vote in the new poll to John McCain's 39 percent.
These voters make up 9 percent of "likely" voters in the track.
The senator from Illinois has a similar lead, 58 to 39 percent, among those who plan to vote early but have not yet. (Those who plan to vote on Election Day also go for Obama, but by a narrower, 51 to 45 percent.)
The voter preferences of the group of 1,430 individuals who have already voted and who were interviewed by Gallup between Oct. 17 and Oct. 27 show a 53% to 43% Obama over McCain tilt.
Among the group of those who say they have not yet voted, but will before Election Day, the skew towards Obama is more pronounced, at 54% to 40%. By comparison, those who are going to wait to vote on Nov. 4 manifest a narrower 50% to 44% Obama over McCain candidate preference. (Across all registered voters over this time period, Obama leads McCain by a 51% to 43% margin).
Palin Spent $50K Of Taxpayer Money Remodeling Governor's Office
Palin spent most of the funds, $45,137, in April to build and furnish three offices inside her suite at the Robert B. Atwood Building in Anchorage, records show.
In June 2007, Palin spent $5,380 for labor and materials on a 72-inch wooden display case in her Juneau office. The case houses a football and basketball signed by players from championship high school teams, native artwork, a Klondike Trail mug and other items, said gubernatorial spokesman William D. McAllister.
The McCain-Palin campaign said it would characterize the remodeling expenses as “routine.”
“Gov. Palin has a long record of cutting wasteful spending, using her veto pen to eliminate nearly a half-billion dollars from the budget,” said Jeff Grappone, New England communications director. “She sold the state’s luxury jet, scrapped the governor’s personal chef and got rid of the personal driver.”
On the campaign trail, Palin has touted that record.