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Member since: Mon Apr 5, 2004, 03:58 PM
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Clinton's Secret Weapon in Nevada Could Launch Her Comeback

Nevada is an interesting state. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/02/hillary-clinton-nevada-caucus-robby-mook-emmy-ruiz

After a difficult start to her campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, with a narrow win in Iowa and a bad loss to Bernie Sanders Tuesday night in New Hampshire, Hillary Clinton needs a major boost. Fortunately for her, the next state to cast its votes is much more favorable territory for the presumed front-runner. Part of her advantage in Nevada, which holds its Democratic caucuses on February 20, is demographic: It's a far more diverse state than the lily-white ones that kicked off the contest. But Clinton is also counting on a secret weapon to dominate the ground game in Nevada and deliver her a decisive win: campaign manager Robby Mook.

The 36-year-old Mook first rose to fame in Clintonland after he oversaw Clinton's 2008 Nevada caucus campaign, where she won 51 percent of the popular vote. (Barack Obama actually netted more delegates from the state, thanks to the convoluted math of the caucus system.) After glowing reviews of his Nevada performance, Mook was entrusted with managing Clinton's efforts in other important territories: Ohio, Indiana, and Puerto Rico—all of which she went on to win. "Robby was instrumental in her winning them," one member of the 2008 Clinton campaign's leadership told me last spring when Mook took the job atop Clinton's 2016 nationwide campaign.....

Clinton's Nevada organization is headed by Emmy Ruiz, a member of the Mook Mafia who started out as a field organizer in Las Vegas in June 2007. She ended up running Latino outreach in the state for Mook before the 2008 caucuses and returned to Nevada to manage Obama's winning general election effort there in 2012. "She went to the Robby Mook school of political organizing," says Rory Reid, the son of Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid who served as Clinton's 2008 Nevada state chairman and is supporting her informally this year. "Robby's influence is significant."

I asked Ruiz if she's trying to replicate the Ganz-style community-based organizing that Mook used last time. "Absolutely!" she responded. "We've been able to bring together a lot of the best practices of different organizing styles. Similar to what we ran with Robby in 2008, there's a high emphasis on community outreach and empowering precinct captains to really take ownership of organizing their communities."

Ruiz says the Clinton campaign is benefiting from the ground-game emphasis of 2008, with precinct captains from the last campaign signing up to help out again. "It feels like déjà vu all over again," Reid says. "It's the same kind of effort."

The ground game will be important in Nevada and the Clinton team has been on the ground there for over a year

Panel rules Texas attorney general to face ethics complaint

Source: ABC Houston

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton will face an ethics investigation for advising local officials they could refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses on religious grounds.

The U.S. Supreme Court last June ruled same-sex couples could wed. A complaint filed in July and co-signed by more than 200 attorneys says Paxton's stance encouraged officials to violate the Constitution and break their oaths of office.

The complaint was dismissed by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel of the State Bar of Texas. But an appeals board appointed by the state Supreme Court reinstated it Feb. 2 and said it should be investigated.

Potential penalties could range from a reprimand to disbarment.

Read more: http://abc13.com/news/panel-rules-texas-attorney-general-to-face-ethics-complaint/1195189/

I am pleased at this turn of events. Texas could soon have a disbarred attorney as its AG

Today, New Hampshire Students Will Likely Pay The Price For The State’s New Voter ID Laws

I am curious to see if this voter id law affects turnout http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2016/02/09/3747158/new-hampshire-voter-id-2/

DURHAM, NH — Today, New Hampshire will require voters to bring a photo ID to the ballot box for the first time in its history. Those who don’t have an ID can ask the poll workers to vouch for them, but if they don’t personally know the voter, he or she will have to sign a “challenged voter” affidavit and allow poll workers to take a Polaroid picture of them.

Voting rights advocates say they’re worried this gives individual poll workers leeway to discriminate, and that it could cause delays and long lines at the polls if the half-million expected voters turn up at the polls. Others fear the new Polaroid photo provision will feel like a “mug shot.”

“I think it’s unnecessary and a form of voter intimidation, especially for people my age who aren’t totally sure of their voting rights,” Chelsea Krimme, a junior at the University of New Hampshire, told ThinkProgress. “They could get scared away from wanting to vote, both this year and in the future.”

This will be New Hampshire’s hundredth year of hosting the country’s first presidential primary, but it may be among the most complicated.

Krimme, an environmental sustainability major, has been tabling and phone-banking across campus to educate students about the voting process. She says she is concerned about the level of confusion she’s witnessed among her peers.

“A lot of students think they’re required to bring an ID when they’re not. They don’t know about being able to sign the affidavit,” she said. “And about half the out-of-state students I’ve talked to think they can’t vote in New Hampshire, when they can. It’s sad, because are so many important issues right now, from student debt to climate change, that students care about and they want to have a voice.”

The sole and only purpose of voter id laws is to keep groups like students from voting. College students tend to vote for Democratic candidates. I doubt that there has been a good job done in informing students as to how this law works

BTW, I posted this thread here because it is not clear to me that this law will favor Clinton or Sanders. I am against all voter id laws.

'SNL' Mocks 'Nasty Little Weasel' Ted Cruz After Iowa Caucus Win

Carnival Cruz is a nasty little weasel and SNL captured the essence of this weasel last night http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/snl-mocks-ted-cruz-appearance

NBC comedy show "Saturday Night Live" mocked Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)'s campaign and the candidate himself following his Iowa caucus win. "SNL" cast member Taran Killam played the GOP nominee hopeful.

Killam as Cruz claimed he was an "unconventional candidate."

"I didn't get where I am today because I was born wealthy or handsome or charismatic or nice," Killam said. "I am not cool or likable or even fine."

He went on, with other jokes about Cruz's appearance.

"In other words, I have overcome perhaps the biggest political liability of all time -- being Ted Cruz," Killam said.

Killam argued as Cruz that "isn't it time for a President whose just a nasty, little weasel?"

TPM has a link to the cold opening. If someone has the youtube link to this, please post it. SNL caught the essence of this little weasel last night

I got an e-mail asking is I would provide a room and board to a Hillary staffer for Super Tuesday

As is I and my two daughters will each be election judges. I may volunteer to house a staffer

Iowa was a must win for Sanders

Sanders is only polling well in four states where the voting population is 90+% and if Sanders can not win in Iowa then he is in trouble in South Carolina and the Super Tuesday states http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/02/01/iowa_caucus_stakes_for_hillary_clinton_and_bernie_sanders.html

For Bernie, meanwhile, a Hillary victory would be an undeniable blow. With the exception of New Hampshire and his home state of Vermont, the Hawkeye State—with a Democratic electorate that skews white and liberal—represents the friendliest terrain on the map for Sanders. If Bernie can’t win in Iowa, Clinton and her allies will have no problem brushing off a Sanders win in New Hampshire next week as little more than the result of the senator being a near-native son in the Granite State. Sanders, then, would be in need of a win elsewhere to reset the race—and soon—but won’t have any obvious place to turn.

South Carolina and Super Tuesday will be fun

Bernie Sanders And Hillary Clinton Are Actually Fighting About Barack Obama

I believe that there is some merit to the observation made by this article. I admit that I am impressed with the amount accomplished by President Obama in face of the stiff GOP opposition to every one of his proposals and I personally believe that President Obama has been a great President. It seems that this view colors who I am supporting in the primary http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/clinton-sanders-obama_us_56aa378de4b05e4e3703753a?utm_hp_ref=politics

But lurking behind this argument about the future is a dispute that's really about the past. It’s a debate over what Obama accomplished in office -- in particular, how significant those accomplishments really are. And it's been simmering on the left for most of the last seven years.

On one side of this divide are activists and intellectuals who are ambivalent, disappointed or flat-out frustrated with what Obama has gotten done. They acknowledge what they consider modest achievements -- like helping some of the uninsured and preventing the Great Recession from becoming another Great Depression. But they are convinced that the president could have accomplished much more if only he’d fought harder for his agenda and been less quick to compromise.

They dwell on the opportunities missed, like the lack of a public option in health care reform or the failure to break up the big banks. They want those things now -- and more. In Sanders, they are hearing a candidate who thinks the same way.

On the other side are partisans and thinkers who consider Obama's achievements substantial, even historic. They acknowledge that his victories were partial and his legislation flawed. This group recognizes that there are still millions of people struggling to find good jobs or pay their medical bills, and that the planet is still on a path to catastrophically high temperatures. But they see in the last seven years major advances in the liberal crusade to bolster economic security for the poor and middle class. They think the progress on climate change is real, and likely to beget more in the future.

It seems that many of the Sanders supporters hold a different view of President Obama which is also a leading reason why Sanders is not exciting African American voters.

Again, I am not ashamed to admit that I like President Obama and think that he has accomplished a great deal which is why I do not mind Hillary Clinton promising to continue President Obama's legacy.

First Read-Clinton's geographical advantage in Iowa

Caucuses are strange animals. I ran my precinct caucus in 2008. The key element in a caucus is not the number of votes but the number of delegates awarded. Here the fact that Sanders support is concentrated in three college towns will hurt him as to delegate allocation http://www.nbcnews.com/meet-the-press/first-read-get-ready-long-fight-democratic-nod-n503696

Staying with the Clinton-vs.-Sanders contest, MSNBC's Alex Seitz-Wald makes a very smart point: Geography likely gives Clinton a big advantage in Iowa. Why? "Iowa is a caucus not a primary. That means a supporter in one place is not necessary as valuable as a supporter in another place... Take the university towns: More than a quarter — 27 percent — of Sanders supporters come from just three counties of Iowa's 99, according to the Register poll, each home to one of the state's largest universities. But those three counties award only 12 percent of the total 1401 delegates at stake statewide. 'He's setting the world on fire on the college campuses,' [Iowa Dem strategist Jeff] Link explained. 'That's great if you're in a primary, but it's not as much if you're in a caucus.'" If Clinton wins Iowa, this will DEFINITELY be one of the reasons why. But don't discount Sanders or his operation at all.

While Sanders may do well in the counties with large student populations, those counties have fewer delegates.

Des Moines Register Endorses Clinton.... In Presidential Race

This will help http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/des-moines-register-hillary-clinton-marco-rubio

The Des Moines Register editorial board announced on Saturday that it would endorse Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) in the Republican primary.

The editorial board wrote that Clinton has the necessary experience to be president of the United States:

The presidency is not an entry-level position. Whoever is sworn into office next January must demonstrate not only a deep understanding of the issues facing America, but also possess the diplomatic skills that enable presidents to forge alliances to get things done.
By that measure, Democrats have one outstanding candidate deserving of their support: Hillary Clinton. No other candidate can match the depth or breadth of her knowledge and experience.

The Iowa paper wrote that Clinton is not "perfect candidate, as evidenced the way she has handled the furor over her private email server." But the editorial board said that it's "almost inconceivable" that Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) would be able to "remake Washington in his own image."

This endorsement will help some
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