Re: Local and State

1

In my neck of the woods, defeating the "repeal marriage equality" ballot measure is looking uncomfortably close.

It sounds like a majority supports marriage equality, but a lot depends on turn out.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:26 AM
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Investing in turnout would seem to pay dividends at local, state, and federal levels. And single issue turnout is usually just as good as candidate turnout. Or that's what Karl Rove seemed to think.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:29 AM
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3

Absolutely and unequivocally, yes on Prop 30 and no on 32 in California. If you care about the maintenance of higher education or the provision of services to the poor in the nation's largest state, as well as a big pushback on the antitax revolution that started in California in the 1970s, you should care about prop 30 wherever you live. Similarly, wherever you live, you should carr about brazen attack on the ability of unions to achieve progress in one of our mor progressive states (Prop 32).

I care a lot about the Presidential race, but I care more about those two ballot measures. Obviously you won't feel the same if you live outside California, but if you're looking for important state/local things to worry about these are the ones.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:34 AM
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4

Motherfucking phone.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:36 AM
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5

Everyone should give money to the Carmona campaign in Arizona. It's very close, and my niece is working on his campaign.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:36 AM
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I assume you know about the awesome lady trying to win back Teddy Kennedy's site from the shitty racist masshole doucheface asswipe. She seems to be doing okay right now; not sure how things are going money-wise. In other news there's some dude running against our local state rep from the left whose whole campaign seems to be predicated on the fact that he isn't taking donations. I imagine he will get his ass kicked (the incumbent is seriously plugged in, especially among the local elderly) but I find the whole thing charming and am going to vote for him.

The last part is, of course, completely irrelevant to heebie's question.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:38 AM
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7

"Teddy Kennedy's seat". Teddy Kennedy's site is presumably still a nice vacation spot for the family.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:38 AM
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(the incumbent is seriously plugged in, especially among the local elderly)

Dialysis tech?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:40 AM
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9

I agree with 3 in every respect. Except for all the typos, which I strongly oppose.


Posted by: jms | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:47 AM
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10

You know what rules about not living in California anymore? Not having to deal with the f'ing proposition system.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:47 AM
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11

3 is right. 5 is right. If Elizabeth Warren loses, it will have nothing to do with money. I say that as much as I love her, and as much as I want her to win.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:50 AM
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10: California has 11 of them this time. Full text of them is 140 pages. California is trolling itself.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:52 AM
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10: why do you hate democracy? Seriously, think about it, if only we could put together $20 or $30 million, we could pass a proposition to force all Californians to shave their heads and suck on lollipops whenever they leave their homes. The memory of Telly Savalas demands that we get to work on this right away.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:54 AM
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14

TL/DR!


Posted by: OPINIONATED CALIFORNIA | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:54 AM
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13: make it a constitutional amendment!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:56 AM
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15: you're thinking federal? Like, amend the US Constitution? That's ambitious but obviously right.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:58 AM
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17

10: You have propositions where you are too! What you lack is the poisonous legacy of prop 13 (and maybe there are stricter requirements to bring things to the ballot, I don't know).

Anyway, I absolutely echo 3. Current top post on my blog is a piece advocating for 30, meant to appeal to all those I'm-a-Democrat-but-don't-raise-my-taxes people.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 8:58 AM
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18

Locally, we have a county proposition to further raise the sales tax to keep funding transportation. Regressive, of course - I don't know why counties can't levy income taxes themselves, I think it would be a winner here - but so much of the money will go non-car projects, arguably the benefits provided in this case are progressive in the same degree.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:02 AM
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19

17.1: we do, but they tend to be much less horrible, and there tend to be less of them. I don't actually know if the difference is primarily cultural or what.

We only have three this cycle, none of which have revenue implications.

Not that we haven't had terrible tax-revolt asshole props in the past.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:09 AM
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20

... oh, and people keep trying to repeal the anti-snob zoning ordinances. So yeah, a difference in degree rather than kind, I suppose.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:10 AM
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21

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What a Beluga whale thinks you sound like. Awesome if off topic.

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Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:13 AM
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22

The main difference, I think without checking, is that in MA (a) the Legislature can repeal initiatives that enact statutes (b) you can't amend the state constitution by initiative. It's really those two features that make the California system so awful.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:13 AM
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22: sounds right. The constitutional amendment process here is hilariously involved (hence the continued legality of gay marriage).


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:16 AM
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24

Ah, that would indeed make things better. Best is New York, which has no citizen initiatives at all.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:17 AM
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25

21 is utterly charming.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:35 AM
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26

21 is wack. That beluga has no flow.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls, Lion | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:42 AM
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27

Besides the propositions, the other intriguing prospect is that California is in reach of getting Democratic supermajorities in our State houses. Our budget requires a 2/3rds majority to raise taxes, and 2-3 Republican votes. Those were unachievable. But with redistricting, CA may get the 2/3rds majority and Democratic budgets by pure brute force. So I'm watching that from time to time.

My councilmember race seems uninteresting. Two progressive, competent, pleasant people running against each other. I have a mild preference, but no objection to the other. I love voting in races like that.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:54 AM
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Quick! Somebody send up the Neil the Ethical Werewolf signal!

The where-should-I-donate-outside-my-jurisdiction question is a specialty of his.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:55 AM
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26. Sorry. You're a talking lion. I don't understand you.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 9:59 AM
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30

29: Racist.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls, Lion | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:00 AM
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19: I thought the deal with California's proposition system was that you only need 250,000 signatures to get something on the ballot, and in California, you can always find 250,000 nutjobs who'll sign on to any crazy goddamn thing you can think of.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:04 AM
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32

Also if you have enough money to plow into MN6 to get Michele Bachman out, it would be awesome if you would spend it that way.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:10 AM
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31: Actually, California currently requires 500,000 signatures for an initiative statute and 800,000 for an initiative constitutional amendment. More to the point, it's calculated as 5% or 8% of the total vote for governor in the last election, and Massachusetts calculates it the same way, but only needing 3%.

It's true you can still get people to sign anything, but it takes a fair amount of money to pay signature-collectors to do the necessary legwork, or alternatively a big existing organization, so it's mostly the proposals of insiders, big business, millionaires, and existing advocacy organizations.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:26 AM
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19: Unless it's a constitutional change, I think that the legislature can pass laws reversing them.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:59 AM
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35

22b: I don't think that's quite right. Prisoners had a constitutional right to vote, but that got on a ballot initiative during Romney's tenure and was taken away.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:01 AM
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36

35: Looks like an initiative constitutional amendment must be approved by at least one-quarter of the legislature in joint session in two successively elected legislatures.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:20 AM
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37

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I know there are thousands of other political prisoners in Russia whose treatment is at bad or much worse, but Christ Jesus -- 2 years in work camps for Pussy Riot?

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Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:23 AM
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36: I thought it was a majority, but anyhow, yeah, that "two successsively elected legislatures" thing is what I was thinking of as "hilariously involved".


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:27 AM
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37: I know they had already been sentenced. It's the actually putting them on the plane to work camps part that seems unreal.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:43 AM
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40

In my township, population 10,000, the biggest issue is that the mayor was charged wth speeding and DUI this Summer, for going over 80 on our main street (on which I live). The biggest argument for reelection is that his rival mailed a letter to every voting household a few days after the DUI incident, and followed up with robocall to everyone, to let us know and demand that the mayor resign immediately. It's really hard to figure out which act is most despicable. Please don't donate anything to either of these guys.

My Congressman, Rob Andrews (D - NJ), used compaign donations for a family vacation to Scotland last year, so I recommend against donating to him unless you want to support Ttam's local economy . Also, he's unopposed, and also he may soon be resigning in disgrace.


Posted by: unimaginative | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:44 AM
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37: Authoritarians fear mockery more than straightforward opposition.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 11:57 AM
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37: I've got friends-of-friends in prison right now for resisting grand juries impaneled to look into indicting people for breaking windows and spraypainting.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 12:24 PM
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43

I don't know how close the race actually is or if it will even make a big difference in the House, but Brownley-Strickland in CA-26 could be a pick up for the Democrats (Brownley). Strickland is more conservative than the Republican who's retiring.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 7:08 PM
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44

The big fight in Alaska this cycle is over control of the state senate. I don't expect anyone outside of Alaska to care about this, but it's important for us.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 7:43 PM
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36: I thought it was a majority, but anyhow, yeah, that "two successsively elected legislatures" thing is what I was thinking of as "hilariously involved".

The tiny bit I saw of the debate has me feeling incredibly depressed, so I don't really have the energy to fight this, but requiring consecutive (but simple) majorities is hardly "hilariously involved"--it's actually a straightforward and eminently sensible solution to the supposed problem of temporary, ill-thought-out passions driving mistaken policy change. This is in contrast to supermajority requirements, which claim to deal with that same problem but really just bias everything towards the status quo.


Posted by: x.trapnel | Link to this comment | 10-22-12 10:37 PM
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46

I've received a Werewolf signal from Sir Kraab! Rawr!

My default donation advice these days is generally "Give to Jeff Merkley's Leadership PAC!" He passes it on to Democratic Senate candidates. He's solidly left-wing and a very good legislative tactician, so he can get the Montana / North Dakota Senators he helped to vote for left-wing stuff when it counts. More on Merkley himself here and the good outcomes of this donation strategy here. (I give $5000 a year, and get to hang out with the Senator and other big donors in Oregon. It would be cool to see you there!)

But maybe you're looking at individual races. This is the best time to do that, since at this point we know which ones are close. Then I'd recommend Heidi Heitkamp in ND, as her race looks super-close though there isn't much polling; Jon Tester in MT, as his race is super-close; and Tammy Baldwin in WI, who seems to have a slim lead and is completely awesome. (She's one of the most left-wing people in the House, supports single-payer health care and supported impeaching Cheney and Gonzales, and is a lesbian.) Indiana and Arizona are also close, but I'd prefer donating somewhere where cheap media markets and low population means your money has more effect like the Mountain West, or to someone truly awesome like Baldwin.

I haven't followed the House very carefully. By all means if you have a good idea about a House race, give there instead of anything else, as it's unclear who will control the House. I like scientists, and physicist Bill Foster in Illinois' 13th district looks like a pretty good candidate in a very tight race. I don't recommend giving to Obama, as he's got money way past the point of diminishing returns.


Posted by: Neil the Ethical Werewolf | Link to this comment | 10-23-12 4:05 AM
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