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Current location: Potlandia
Member since: Fri Sep 28, 2007, 04:39 PM
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Journal Archives

Why in the world is Hillary spending SO much money on polls?

How Much Are Pollsters Really Getting Paid?

Mark Blumenthal, Senior Polling Editor, The Huffington Post
Ariel Edwards-Levy, Reporter, The Huffington Post
Janie Velencia, Associate Polling Editor, The Huffington Post

Most pollsters wish they were paid as well as Donald Trump thinks they are, but FEC filings show that so far few if any are.

In an interview with New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, the real estate mogul and Republican presidential contender explained that the other candidates “have pollsters; they pay these guys $200,000 a month to tell them, ‘Don’t say this, don’t say that, you use the wrong word, you shouldn’t put a comma here.’ I don’t want any of that. I have a nice staff, but no one tells me what to say."

The reality is that none of the Republican contenders has yet to pay a pollster anywhere near that much, although Hillary Clinton’s polling disbursements in 2015 come close. ~snip~

Hillary Clinton’s campaign and super PAC are the big exceptions, racking up over a million dollars in polling disbursements so far in 2015. The FEC reports show payments of $814,915 to lead polling firm Benenson Strategy Group and $90,000 to David Binder Research. The Priorities USA Action super PAC also paid out $139,734 to Global Strategy Group and $42,000 to Garin Strategic Research.

Keep in mind that these disbursements are taken from campaign spending reports for all of 2015 – they are not monthly amounts. They also include the total cost of polling and focus groups conducted for the campaigns, rather than reflecting net profit or the pollsters’ take-home pay.


Whaaaat? "Biden holds meeting with Elizabeth Warren in DC"

Now this is quite interesting IMHO.

Biden holds meeting with Elizabeth Warren in DC
By Mark Hensch * August 22, 2015, 12:50 pm * The Hill

Vice President Joe Biden made a surprise visit to Washington, D.C.’s Naval Observatory on Saturday for a confidential talk with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), CNN reported. Biden’s return to the District comes amid buzz he is seriously weighing a 2016 Oval Office bid.

CNN said that two sources confirmed the pair’s face-to-face, the biggest indicator yet that Biden is seriously tempted by an Oval Office bid next year.

“The vice president traveled last minute to Washington, D.C. for a private meeting and will be returning to Delaware,” an aide told CNN. Biden spokeswoman Kendra Barkoff declined further comment on the alleged rendezvous.

CNN initially reported Saturday that Biden arrived in Washington around 11 a.m. and had planned on returning home to Wilmington, Del., later in the weekend.

Warren, a beloved figure in progressive circles, has resisted calls to mount her own presidential candidacy. She reportedly told WBZ radio in Boston on Friday that she considers the 2016 Democratic primary up for grabs.

“I don’t think anyone has been anointed,” said Warren, who has not yet endorsed a candidate.


With the FBI Investigating Clinton's Emails, Bernie Sanders Should Be the Democratic Frontrunner

With the FBI Investigating Clinton's Emails, Bernie Sanders Should Be Considered the Democratic Frontrunner
08/21/2015 * HuffPo * H.A. Goodman

Last year, if someone told you that by August of 2015, a poll would show Bernie Sanders ahead of Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, what would you say? Six months ago, if you were told that Bernie Sanders would draw over 100,000 people at events across the country, how would you react?

The truth is that Bernie Sanders is long past the viewpoint that he's unelectable or "too liberal." Without serious interest from mainstream media, and without billions in campaign funding, the Vermont Senator has been able to generate a nationwide groundswell of enthusiasm. Money can't buy enthusiasm, and money certainly can't buy a person's trust -- Sanders has an abundance of both.

Since Bernie Sanders is sincere and known for his direct and forthright communication style, he won't have to spend any dollars convincing Americans that he's trustworthy. Sanders, unlike others, can simply remind people that he voted against the Iraq War, voted against the Defense of Marriage Act, fought hard against Keystone XL and the TPP, and favors breaking up "too big to fail" banks.

Up until now, the view that Hillary Clinton is the Democratic frontrunner was bolstered by an ever-dwindling poll among Democratic voters between the former Secretary of State and the Vermont Senator. However, with major polls today showing Sanders challenging or defeating Clinton and Republican, conventional wisdom has allowed the possibility of Clinton possibly losing a second run at the presidency. Furthermore, the momentum generated by the Sanders campaign is genuine and will only increase (among all demographics) with greater name recognition across the country.

Most importantly, Bernie Sanders is the only Democrat gaining attention nationwide who isn't linked to an FBI investigation. Why some Democrats still continue to believe a candidate can win the White House with the Justice Department, FBI, and other intelligence agencies investigating this candidate's email practices, seems to overlook one obvious fact. Nobody has ever won the White House with an ongoing FBI and Justice Department investigation, and it doesn't seem that the FBI or Justice Department will cease investigating Clinton's email saga by Election Day; 444 days away.

In reality, the real frontrunner within the race for Democratic nominee is the candidate gaining momentum every single day, without overwhelming media coverage. Bernie Sanders is in reality the likely choice for Democratic nominee, since his competition is linked to an ongoing FBI investigation. Statisticians and pundits can serve as naysayers, but the reality is that Hillary Clinton's lead over Bernie Sanders is constantly dwindling, and yet Clinton's email saga is just beginning. For these reasons and more, the realistic choice for Democratic nominee is the Vermont Senator, not the former Secretary of State who is now under scrutiny from various government agencies.

Fabricated or real, the scandal exists, and nobody can win the White House with the FBI as a running mate.


K Street betting on Hillary

K Street is banking on Hillary Clinton, with more than twice as many Washington lobbyists donating to the former secretary of State’s presidential campaign than any other candidate.

While many lobbyists are holding their pocketbooks in the early stages of the 2016 election cycle, Clinton — the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination — received at least $625,703 from 316 registered lobbyists and corporate PACs during the first half of the year, according to disclosure forms.

“She’s going at it for the second time, and there is a list of people who are very committed to her from eight years ago,” said Al Motteur, senior Democratic lobbyist at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck and longtime Clinton supporter. Motteur has not only given to the campaign, but is also bundling cash from other donors.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush ranks as a distant second in the influence industry, collecting $444,500 from 140 lobbyists.
Source: The Hill

Cornell West & Chris Hedges: How the Black Elite Betrayed the Civil Rights Tradition

How the Black Elite Betrayed the Civil Rights Tradition
By By Adam Johnson * Alternet * August 14, 2015

In the first episode of Chris Hedges's new teleSUR show Days of Revolt, the Pulitzer-Prize winner sat down with long-time friend - and recently arrested—Cornel West to discuss the current state of black America in the age of Ferguson. West's primary critique remains what he refers to as the "black elite class" who he says have betrayed the black poor.

"What took the place of collective fightback was individual outward upward mobility" West insisted, "so (instead of) what was once in place—much stronger moral conviction—we see ruthless ambition."

West has spoken up for years about what he considers to be other black intellectuals inability to discuss class and empire. A conversation that's become more heated of late as many in the Black Lives Matter movement have critiqued Sanders for only talking about class while some progressives have critiqued neoliberal "identity politics" for dismissing class altogether. West, for his part, insists on highlighting both.

"So you hit the issues of homophobia while you hit the issues of male supremacy. But in the end, if you're not hitting monopoly capitalism," Dr. West said, "if you're not hitting the imperial policies that flow therefrom, you're still not going to be at the root of what we need to come to terms with."

Watch the 25 minute interview here:


Hillary supporter: I hope she "bows out gracefully"

I’m a Hillary Clinton fan. But I hope she bows out with grace
by Mary Dejevsky * The Guardiqn * August 17, 2015

Hillary Clinton has a fundraising pot that is overflowing. She appears to be cruising to the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination: and then, if the stars align in her favour, on to a well-deserved place in history as the first female president of the United States.

Her supporters have wished it for so long, it seems almost impossible that it might not come to pass. And I would count myself among those supporters, ever since – as a Washington-based correspondent – I watched the lobbyists gang up to defeat her health plan, and observed how she toughed out the sordid revelations about her husband and “that woman, Miss Lewinsky”.

Clinton, as she showed then and has shown since, is not one to walk away. She embodies that all-American quip about the going getting tough and the tough getting going. But I just hope that there are those, somewhere in her entourage, who are even now begging her not to do it, and to bow out while there is still time to do so with grace.

Reality must be looked in the eye. Clinton is a hugely divisive figure, including within her own party – and not primarily because she is a woman. There is the clan question. What does it say about the meritocratic credentials of the United States that two of the most favoured candidates for 2016 are closely related to recent presidents? Neither is to blame but in my book, this alone would be a reason for both Clinton and Jeb Bush to leave the field. It is also a reason why they may not be electable.

Then there is the Bill question. A large section of the Republican party hates the Clinton name with the same venom that many Britons reserve for Margaret Thatcher, blaming Bill, as they see it, for defiling the presidency. This should not affect Hillary Clinton’s support – but it will limit her ability to appeal across parties. Nor do US voters need to be dragged all over again through the intricacies of the (loss-making) Whitewater land deal, the involvement of the Rose Law firm, or the suicide of a close aide, but they probably will. And if these Bill questions are not enough, there is another where she really does have some explaining to do: it concerns her involvement with his post-presidential charitable fundraising at a time when she held public office.

Clinton’s chief liability, though, is the baggage she carries of her own...


Ouch! WaPo: Hillary Backers fear old weaknesses stalk Clinton campaign

Backers fear old weaknesses stalk Clinton campaign

It was supposed to be different this time. After the wounds of 2008, many of them self-inflicted, Hillary Rodham Clinton rebooted for 2016 with a new message, new advisers and new energy.

But two dynamics have crystallized this month, suggesting the New Hillary is hobbled by old weaknesses. Once again, worried supporters see signs of a bunker mentality in response to bad news about her e-mail server and other controversies, and they see a candidate who can seem strangely blinkered to the threat posed by a lesser-known challenger.

“A lot of the people who were hired by the campaign were new to the Clintons,” said a prominent Democrat who counts both Hillary Clinton and former president Bill Clinton as friends. “I kind of assumed it would be different. But it hasn’t changed.”

That Democrat and other supporters requested anonymity in order to discuss the shortcomings of a candidate whom they still overwhelmingly support and think can win the White House. Several supporters said that while no one is pulling the fire alarm, they see worrisome patterns emerging.

Among them: insularity, rigidity and a sense that the operation is tone-deaf to changes happening around it.


The Rise Of Bernie Sanders Has Turned The Democratic Party Upside Down

The Rise Of Bernie Sanders Has Turned The Democratic Party Upside Down
By Jason Easleymore from Jason Easley * August, 14th, 2015 * Politicus

It isn’t a coincidence that as Bernie Sanders is being forced to move to a bigger New Hampshire campaign headquarters due to increasing popularity, Democrats are actively searching for more serious candidates to enter the 2016 field.

The Sanders campaign is so popular in New Hampshire that they have to move to a bigger headquarters. Kurt Ehrenberg, the New Hampshire coordinator for the Sanders campaign, told The Washington Post, “We’re ramping up our campaign. We’re hiring new staff every day. We’re opening new offices. Things are going extremely well….Our volunteers don’t just want to come out and see the candidate. They actually want to work for Bernie because Bernie instills this terrific enthusiasm in them.”

While Sanders continues to grow both organizationally and attendance wise, other Democrats see Hillary Clinton as a vulnerable frontrunner and are worried about what the Sanders rise might mean for November 2016.

Some Democrats are clearly fishing for another established candidate to enter the Democratic race. There was a brief flirtation around Al Gore, but that was quickly squashed. Most of the serious chatter is coming from supporters of Vice President Biden.


Team Hillary has to use puppets


Because they obviously can't find a real photo of the real Bernie that fits their wish-dream.

Why the Nation's Nurses are Supporting Bernie Sanders for President

Bernie Sanders aligns perfectly with nurses on the most critical problems facing our nation, from income inequality to guaranteeing healthcare to all to holding Wall Street and corporations to account to opening the doors to college education for everyone to racial justice to the climate crisis.

Those are the same issues that animate nurses when we talk about voting for nurses' values -- caring, compassion and community to heal America.

But we also support the Sanders moment also because of the rare opportunity his campaign represents to not just speak truth to power, but to join movements together to change our country. To stand as a social movement against the obscene wealth that controls our lives, starves our communities, destroys our people and expand a populist movement that put human life before profit.

All the establishment pundits who are scrambling for ways to dismiss the outpouring of excitement for his campaign and to marginalize those who have filled the stadiums increasingly look like cranks trying to stop an approaching train.

The myths: (debunked in the linked article)
Bernie can't win
He's not drawing black and Latino voters.
He's an "avowed democratic socialist."

"You'll never have to wonder which side I am on," Bernie says. While other candidates are intrinsically tied to Wall Street and the Chamber of Commerce, Bernie not only calls for repeal of Citizens United and public financing of campaigns he is the only candidate not taking money from big corporations and PACs.

Bernie wants to take money from Wall Street too -- by taxing them to fund a civil society with the health care, the jobs, the housing and the environmental protections people need.

Bernie Sanders knows that his campaign is not about him. It's about all of us. And it will take all of us to change the course of history. It's time to start now.
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