Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Random Political Thoughts

Pence v. Gregg: All the talk about the lieutenant governor candidates won't amount to a hill of beans to the average general election voter come November. People don't vote for the Lt. Governor candidate. It only matters to the partisans. Nonetheless, I found it interesting though the response of Republican Sue Ellspermann when asked about her voting in the 2008 Democratic primary and Democrat Vi Simpson's response when a reporter inquired if she was added to add ideological balance to the ticket and to help with the party's base. Both candidates seemed caught off guard by the question and stumbled before coming up with a response. Those candidates should have known those questions were coming and had a response ready to go.

Mourdock v. Donnelly: I am not terribly troubled by the decision of Sen. Richard Lugar to not campaign for primary winner, Richard Mourdock. I think the expectation that a primary loser should go out and actively campaign for primary winners has always been unfair to the departed candidate who undoubtedly left everything on the table to win. Plus, having Lugar on the campaign trail would be a huge distraction to the Mourdock campaign as reporters would constantly be asking Lugar to contradict Mourdock on the issues. Nonetheless, the problem with Lugar's announcement is that it fits into the pre-primary perception that he campaigned as an arrogant incumbent who thought he had a lifetime entitlement to the seat. A little humility would have helped the Lugar campaign.

Mourdock v. Donnelly (take two): Mourdock is dead right on the ethanol subsidy, which although it formally went away as of the start of this year, now exists in the form of a mandate that our fuel have ethanol in it. Ethanol by any objective measure, is a failed technology. It's dirtier, less efficient, and results in food prices being substantially increased with the diversion of corn from food into our fuel tank. (Yes, it makes fuel cheaper, but since you get less miles per gallon when ethanol is mixed in, you don't end up ahead.) Environmentalists don't even support corn-based ethanol anymore. Ethanol though has been good to the pocketbooks of Indiana farmers, with now 40% of Hoosier farm crops going to ethanol and prices rising in accordance with the increased demand. Mourdock took a position on principle. Donnelly instead decided to take an intellectually unsound position in order to pander to Indiana farmers. Makes me proud to support Mourdock.

Obama v. Romney:  Rasmussen just released a poll showing Mitt Romney ahead of President Barack Obama by six points, 48-42.  (An earlier Howey-DePauw poll had pegged the margin at nine points.)When the Rasmussen poll came out a Republican activist Facebook was touting it, apparently thinking it is good news for Romney.  Frankly, I thought it was horrible news for Romney. I would have expected Romney to have a comfortable double digit lead in Indiana.  If Romney has to divert general election resources to win Indiana, he's in serious trouble.

Obama v. Romney (take two):   By nominating Romney, the Republicans gave up any chance of running a populist type campaign that could have reached average working men and women and reached beyond traditional politics.  But there is an alternative for a Romney win...that the economy is doing so poorly that people choose him to manage the economy over Obama.   But looking at the economic data this weekend in preparation for that topic on Civil Discourse Now, it looks like that option is fading.  While the GDP numbers aren't spectacular, the economy is growing, albeit slowly.  Unemployment meanwhile has dropped 2 points in just eighteen months.  It's now approximately where it was when Obama begin his term in office.  If people think the economy is heading in the right direction, Obama win.


Josh Featherstone said...

No mention of Rupert Boneham, Andy Horning, or Gary Johnson? You're better than that.

varangianguard said...

Romney's "management style" is exemplified by his tenure at Bain Capital. people that think otherwise are likely in for a big surprise.

patriot paul said...

@ Josh,
You won't find conservatives flocking to Libertarians' message of legalization of prostitutes, same sex marriage, drugs, etc. Though some statistics may show a general trending of Americans in that direction, you'll alienate staunch conservatives including evangelicals.

Bill said...

Mourdocks true colors wil shoe this cycle, we will see what a complete bastard he is.

If his racist mouthpieces are still running the show, Mourdock will be toast. Even the ultra right wing whack jobs won't put with with the racist rants of Mourdocks people.

I for one will vote for Joe// there are a lot of Republicans that will cross over. Mourdocks mantra of hate will not fly with with us

TMLutas said...

The labor force participation numbers have cratered under Obama. When you're so discouraged that you give up looking for work, you are not going to go into the voting booth in the mood to vote for the incumbent for President. If all those people started looking for work again, the unemployment rate would be north of 10%.

Indy Student said...

@Josh: Simply put, there's nothing new there. The LP candidates have been a wrap for months. They're campaigning, sure, but Rupert picked his LT Gov several weeks ago. That's why they aren't factored into this equation. As the election draws closer, I'm sure you'll see more media bits on all candidates, particularly Rupert.

@Patriot Paul: I find it hard to justify trying to cater to a base (evangelicals) who mostly have found a home in the Republican Party. Evangelicals are some of the most dedicated Republican voters out there. And when a Republican candidate doesn't please them, they're more likely to just not vote (either for that particular candidate/office or altogether) than vote for an opponent.

Libertarians would be more wise to go after the more soft Rs and Ds out there than the most dedicated.

Josh Featherstone said...

@Matt- If this were a story about the recent happenings in the various campaigns I would agree with you. It's not, though. It's a story comparing the candidates in the races and how the races are going. In that case, it's just leaving them out because you don't think they're worth covering.