Patterico's Pontifications

8/30/2008

Watching the Post-Palin Polls

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 9:38 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Instapundit gathers links to three post-Palin polls: Zogby, Gallup, and Rasmussen. The Gallup and Rasmussen polls are 3-day averages and they show a good convention bounce for Obama (Obama leads in Gallup 49-41 and in Rasmussen 47-43). The single-day Zogby poll has it McCain 47-Obama 45, which suggests McCain’s Palin announcement blunted the Obama bounce. However, Zogby isn’t as reliable as Gallup and Rasmussen so I’ll wait a few days to say for sure.

Frankly, I doubt we will know what Americans think about Palin for at least 2 weeks. Very few Americans have heard of Sarah Palin and fewer still know her story. Articles like this People Magazine story and next week’s Republican Convention will help introduce her to Americans. The downside is it’s hard to introduce and get people to accept an unknown. The upside is there is a lot of room for Palin’s favorables to grow.

Of course, the real test will come as she is interviewed by the news media, the Sunday Meet The Press-type shows, and participates in the VP debate. Fair or not, it’s especially important that she comes across as accomplished and articulate given her status as a woman and a Republican.

Still, I can’t remember a political race that felt as much like a tennis match as this one. Each day brings a new volley that’s riveting to watch.

— DRJ

A GOP Moment

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 5:32 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

CNN reports Sarah Palin gave another shout-out to Hillary Clinton supporters today in Pennsylvania but this time she was met with boos, groans and grumbles:

“As she did at in her debut speech in Ohio yesterday, Palin appealed to the women in the crowd here in Pennsylvania with a political shout-out to Geraldine Ferraro, who preceded Palin as the first women to be tapped as a vice presidential candidate. The reference was met with polite applause.

But in contrast with the mild reception that greeted the comment at the Ohio event, when Palin praised Clinton here for showing “determination and grace in her presidential campaign,” the Alaska governor was met with a noisy mix of boos, groans and grumbles …”

Sounds like an opportunity for Palin to have a Sister Souljah moment with her GOP base.

— DRJ

Federal Judge Samuel Kent Charged

Filed under: Judiciary,Media Bias — DRJ @ 4:25 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Following up on this earlier post, Texas federal Judge Samuel Kent was charged this week with federal sex crimes:

“Kent was charged Thursday with abusive sexual contact and attempted aggravated sex abuse related to two alleged attacks on his former case manager Cathy McBroom in 2003 and 2007.”

Kent intends to remain on the bench and hearing cases, although he had earlier agreed not to hear criminal cases involving the federal government or cases involving sexual harassment. The Fifth Circuit previously reprimanded Kent for related judicial misconduct, at which time he took a 4-month leave of absence with full pay. The House Judiciary Committee may also be investigating Kent.

I think the Fifth Circuit should step in. Kent is innocent until proven guilty but this looks terrible.

— DRJ

Police Arrest Minneapolis Protesters (Updated)

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 4:07 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Star-Tribune reports Minneapolis police raided Republican National Convention protest groups and arrested five members, charging them as a criminal enterprise that planned criminal acts to “welcome” conventioneers:

“In a statement Saturday morning, Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher said the St. Paul raid targeted the RNC Welcoming Committee, a group he described as “a criminal enterprise made up of 35 self-described anarchists…intent on committing criminal acts before and during the Republican National Convention.”

“These acts include tactics to blockade and disable delegate buses, breaching venue security and injuring police officers,” Fletcher said. Deputies seized a variety of items that they believed were tools of civil disobedience: a gas mask, bolt cutters, axes, slingshots, homemade “caltrops” for disabling buses, even buckets of urine.”

Protesters claimed the police action was preventive detention and likened it to terrorism. They vowed they would not be intimidated. The raids were also condemned by City Councilman Dave Thune:

“I’m really ticked off…the city is perfectly capable of taking care of things,” Thune said. “If they had found anything that could have been used to commit a crime they would have arrested somebody.”

“Unless they come up with anthrax or weapons of mass destruction, I think they [the police] came up short.”

I try to be open-minded but anarchists don’t do much for me. Neither does this city councilman.

UPDATE: Here’s a link to a Pioneer Press article that has more details on these arrests. H/T htom.

— DRJ

Andrew Sullivan’s Sexist Attacks on Sarah Palin

Filed under: General — Alex @ 2:45 pm

Instead of correcting errors on his website, Andrew Sullivan is waging jihad against Sarah Palin. It’s interesting to read his arguments and ask: Would he be saying this if Sarah Palin were a man?

Sullivan cites the example of a Catholic woman and Hillary supporter who sent her friend an e-mail titled: “Sarah Palin is a Bad Mother!” The alleged voter heard that Palin had a 4-month-old child with Down Syndrome, and asked: “How in the name of GOD, can she even think about leaving her child or taking her child on the campaign trail for 70 days?”

(Place to one side, for now, the question of whether this Catholic voter would feel more comfortable with Palin if she had aborted the baby.)

Did it ever occur to Sullivan (or the alleged woman voter) that maybe Palin’s husband could take care of the child?

I guess not. You’ve come a long way, baby!

In another post, Sullivan responds to comparisons between Palin’s and Obama’s experience by arguing that Obama campaigned his way to the number one spot, and Palin didn’t. (Neither did Hillary, Andrew.) Sullivan then lets loose with this shining example of patronizing condescension:

I find the comparison with Obama ludicrous. But it will be made. Palin looks to me like a lovely person and a good local politician, with some inevitable rough spots. I’d be delighted if she took a leadership role in the GOP in the future. But in the same league as Obama? Do Republicans really think that little of him?

(Actually, we think even less of him.)

Shorter Sullivan: Can you believe they’re comparing Obama to this, this . . . woman?!

When he dismissively refers to Palin as a “lovely person,” you can almost see him giving her a pat on the head.

I’m interested in knowing how women commenters react to these arguments.

Obama Sets the Tone

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 2:39 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Politico reports that Barack Obama has, once again, criticized his staff for overreacting to his opponent:

“When asked about his campaign’s attack on Palin, attributed to top spokesman Bill Burton, at a Friday afternoon media availability at a Pennsylvania biodiesel plant, Obama referred to a statement he and running mate Joe Biden had since issued that hardly touched on policy issues and called Palin “an admirable person and … a compelling new voice.”

Obama disavowed his campaign’s first response, telling journalists that “I think that, uh, you know, campaigns start getting these, uh, hair triggers and, uh, the statement that Joe and I put out reflects our sentiments,” he said.”

The Politico further notes how Obama scapegoated his campaign staff several times in the past:

“The latest disavowal of his staff’s comments on his behalf or in his name continues a tactic Obama employed repeatedly during his contentious battle with Hillary Rodham Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination.

When confronted about a campaign memo during the primary criticizing Clinton’s ties to India that referred to her as “D-Punjab,” Obama called it “a screw-up on the part of our research team” and said “it was stupid and caustic.”

And when the late Tim Russert asked Obama at a Las Vegas debate about his campaign’s efforts to push the storyline that Team Clinton was stoking racial tensions, Obama said “our supporters, our staff, get overzealous. They start saying things that I would not say.”

But, he added, “it is my responsibility to make sure that we’re setting a clear tone in our campaign.”

Obama’s penchant for publicly rebuking his staff stands in sharp contrast to his declarations about how important they are to his management strategy, as well as the all for one, one for all mentality that he encourages in them.”

Either his staff is poorly managed or this is an intentional device the Obama campaign is using to make him look good while his staff inflicts maximum damage on its opponents. We have a name for it in the law — it’s called good cop/bad cop — and the good news is it works. The bad news is Obama thinks we’re too dumb to see through it.

— DRJ

Joe Bonehead Biden strikes again.

Filed under: General — WLS @ 2:03 pm

[Posted by WLS]

Biden and Obama appeared together in Beaver PA yesterday.  During his introduction of Obama, Biden told the crowd about why it was that he moved away from Scranton when he was young, and went to Deleware.

Basically he said that a family that lived 7 blocks from him was the Casey family.  There was Bob Casey, who was 12 years older than Biden, and Bobby Casey, who was 12 years younger than Biden.

Biden said he knew that someday someone from Scranton would be famous, but he figured out that it was probably going to be the Caseys and not him, so he left for Delaware.

All of this got great laughs and applause.

Only one problem — Biden was 10 years old when his family left Scranton for Delaware.

Which makes it hard to explain how he knew Bobby Casey would be more famous than him when Bobby Casey would not be born for another 2 years after Biden left.

And it again plays into Biden’s overinflated view of himself — that as a 10 year old he was powers of political prognostication unrivaled then or now.

The Palin Bounce

Filed under: 2008 Election — WLS @ 1:18 pm

Today’s Gallup and Rasmussen daily tracking polls include surveys up through Friday. Both polls say the Palin announcement came early enough in the day that their polling was able to take into consideration both Obama’s convention speech on Thursday night and the Palin announcement on Friday morning.

Bear in mind that Obama stretched his lead in both tracking polls with surveys taken Thursday morning — BEFORE his speech, but after the Clintons’ speeches and Biden’s speech.

After those Thursday surveys, Obama led 49-41 in the Gallup poll of registered voters and 49-45 in the Rasmussen poll of likely voters.

Today’s polls, including Friday surveys, have each race exactly the same as Thursday — 49-41 and 49-45.

More significantly, in Rasmussen’s breakdown of the polling, it found the following:

Palin earns positive reviews from 78% of Republicans, 26% of Democrats and 63% of unaffiliated voters. Obviously, these numbers will be subject to change as voters learn more about her in the coming weeks. Among all voters, 29% have a Very Favorable opinion of Palin while 9% hold a Very Unfavorable view.

By way of comparison, on the day he was selected as Barack Obama’s running mate, Delaware Senator Joseph Biden was viewed favorably by 43% of voters.

In the new survey, 35% of voters say the selection of Palin makes them more likely to vote for McCain while 33% say they are less likely to do so. Most Republicans say they are more likely to vote for Palin and most Democrats say the opposite. As for voters not affiliated with either major party, 37% are more likely to vote for McCain and 28% less likely to do so.

As Rasmussen notes, these numbers are certain to change over the course of the next 11 weeks. But I think the McCain campaign is thrilled with the first impression that she made and the manner it is reflected in the polling.

Experience Counts

Filed under: 2008 Election — DRJ @ 1:13 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Liberals – including some commenters here – are jumping on the bandwagon that Palin proves experience isn’t the issue in this election. I think the reverse is true and Palin shows experience counts. Here’s why:

Terrorism is the issue of this decade and, in my opinion, it will be for decades to come. John McCain has experience that will help him deal with the challenges of terrorism but Barack Obama also thinks he has the answers. Obama’s plan is to escalate the fight in Afghanistan and Pakistan, a military solution that is at odds with the desires of his liberal supporters and that makes me leery he will follow through.

But Americans have lived with terrorism for 7 years since 9/11 and we’ve learned a lot about this threat during that time. It’s unlikely any President will be given a blank check to deal with terrorism now. We’re all armchair quarterbacks on this issue.

There is another, related problem that faces America and that’s Energy. Solving our energy problems will not only help our economy but will also help us deal with national security and even terrorism by limiting the funds available to terrorists from Middle Eastern states. We can solve our energy problems the Democratic way by curtailing our energy consumption and jeopardizing our economy in an all-or-nothing effort to switch to green energy sources. Or we can really mean it when we say every energy source is on the table including hydroelectric, wind, solar, nuclear, coal, gas, and oil.

Sarah Palin has proven experience with and more knowledge of oil and gas production than any candidate in this Presidential election. As Beldar explains, she’s used that knowledge and experience to work with oil companies to maximize production but Palin is not in the pocket of the oil companies. That’s exactly how it should be. Business doesn’t need a partner in government just a fair opportunity, and small “c” conservatives like Sarah Palin know that.

In addition, there is a lot of overlap in the production of energy. It’s no surprise that oilmen like T. Boone Pickens are able to transition from oil and gas to wind power without losing a step. Oil, gas, wind, etc., are all resources and the laws and processes that help people develop one energy source often apply to other sources. Thus, the experience and knowledge Sarah Palin has developed in dealing with the oil and gas industry will help her analyze and deal with all energy sources, and Energy is the issue of the future our leaders must be prepared to deal with.

Obama and Biden believe they are the best team for an America whose goal is that everyone get along and share. I want America and Americans to do more than get along and share. I want America and Americans to be efficient and prepared for the future, and for that McCain and Palin have the experience that counts.

— DRJ


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