There Is Money To Be Made In Presidential Debates

The GOP presidential debates are proving to be a bonanza for cable news. With the third face-off set for Wednesday night, CNBC has sold out its entire inventory of ads, commanding $250,000 — and in some cases north of that — for each 30-second spot, according to media buyers and sources at NBCUniversal. That’s a huge premium over the $50,000 the business news network customarily charges for ads. It’s also 25 percent higher than what CNN got during its Republican debate in September (when Donald Trump challenged CNN chief Jeff Zucker to donate the network’s ad revenue to veterans charities).

Backstory As To Why Mitt Romney Bowed Out Of Presidential Race

Republican National Committee Holds Winter Meeting

When Mark Halperin writes, I read.

This is the type of thing folks such as myself are talking about today.

The second “no go” reason weighed far more heavily on Romney—and was likely the dispositive one. People close to the former governor say he believed he would beat Hillary Clinton in a general election matchup if the election were held today. But, like many election watchers, Romney anticipates a vicious Republican nomination fight that will damage and deplete the ultimate winner, while Clinton, virtually unchallenged for her party’s nomination, will be luxuriantly free to squirrel away hundreds of millions of election dollars and step into the general arena, rich and refreshed, against a shattered GOP nominee.

But those familiar with Romney’s thinking as he’s been contemplating a run and over the years say that he has held a jaundiced view of the former Florida governor dating all the way back to his handling of the Terri Schiavo case, and has come to see Bush as a non-entity in the 2016 nomination contest. Romney is said to see Bush as a small-time businessman whose financial transactions would nonetheless be fodder for the Democrats and as terminally weighed down with voters across the board based on his family name. Romney also doesn’t think much of Bush’s political skills (a view mocked by Bush’s camp, who say Romney is nowhere near Bush’s league as a campaigner).  Romney also considers Bush the national Republican figure who was the least helpful to him during his last run for the White House, a position that has darkened Ann Romney’s view of Bush as well.

How Did David Blaska And Gregory Humphrey Fare With Election Predictions?

Thanks to David Blaska for making graphics for posting.  Earlier this week I posted our predictions and now lets examine how we fared.

final results


A Lesson For Democrats From Richard Nixon

The morning after the elections is in need of something larger than the returns to ponder.



What Did The Mid-Term Elections Mean?

There was anger and angst in the voting, but look deep into the polling and it shows that change is one thing and support for the GOP is another.   While Democrats took one huge hit to the political chin in the elections it does not mean Republicans prevailed with changing the mindset of America.

No Republican senate candidate ran a campaign on ideas or policy.  There was a void ten miles long and deep when it came to ideas.  No one played to the future.  It all was a hard play for either political survival or a chance to get to the senate chamber for the first time.

Voters were concerned about issues that seem daunting.   Large institutions such as  the Veterans Administration or smaller ones such as the Secret Service  have developed issues that, while manageable when it comes to resolving them, seem weighty and most perplexing to the average citizen.  Add to the mix ISIS and the fear-mongering over Ebola along with the continuing belief that the economy is not growing fast enough led voters to the polls with a frown on their face.  Also add to the mix that the playing field was always with a strong Republican advantage.

One needs to take into account the facts that are playing out in the nation and add them to the context of the election returns.

There is no call from the public for cutting needed government programs. In fact Medicaid expansion is a winning issue.  In places where minimum wage was on the ballot it won big.  Pot legislation passed.  The nation is moving towards gay marriage–and fast.   Try as they might Governor Walker and his administration could not stop it.

There was no move towards conservative thinking as that was not on the ballots since the campaigns were all designed to divide and conquer with the use of anger and fear to make for a win.   Shallow politics to be sure but clearly no great call for conservative ideals.

What people voted for was clear.  They want government to work. Sticking spokes into the wheel can not be the continued tactic of the GOP any longer in congress. They now have to produce policy.   Everyone is watching.

Heavy Voter Turnout In Dane County

This is the type of news we can be proud of—but we need to keep the votes coming.

And ballots ran out around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday at High Point Church on the Far West Side of Madison. 

“We’re seeing numbers equal to a presidential election,” said Rudy Moore, who was overseeing the Wil-Mar Neighborhood Center polling site on the city’s Near East Side.

The polling site at the Hy-Vee grocery store on East Washington Avenue was “extremely busy,” said overseer John Heaton. More than 30 people were lined up to vote at 7 a.m.

“This is as many voters as I’ve ever seen at this location at this time of day,” he said.

Lisa Wiese, who oversees the polling site at St. Paul Lutheran Church on North Sherman Avenue, said turnout was running about double the usual.

“It’s been constant,” she said. “We’ve had lines for ballots and lines for voting booths.”

The three wards with the highest numbers of votes cast as of 11 a.m. were in Madison’s Near East Side, with 909 votes cast at O’Keeffe Middle School, 860 votes cast at Olbrich Botanical Gardens, which were each about 33 percent of that area’s registered voters, and at Sequoya Library on Madison’s Near West Side with 843 votes, or about 20 percent of that ward’s registered voters.

Voter Number 1,129 At 3:00 P.M.–Wil-Mar Center In Madison

Lets ramp it up!  Tick-tock! Tick-tock!

Poll workers report that the action has been constant.  From my couple of minutes at the polling location there were several people registering to vote.  Same-day registration is something that some Republicans would like to squelch–but anyone looking at the scene today can attest as to why such registration is good for democracy.

Madison Progressive Brenda Konkel “Couldn’t Vote For Burke”

I am stunned and simply aghast.

Brenda Konkel is one of Madison’s best known progressives.  There is no doubt she has a big heart and cares about a host of issues.  At times I really agree with her sentiments, and then there are others times I think she has become unplugged from reality.

Today is one of those times when she clearly needed an extension cord.  There is no excuse for her action.

On Brenda Konkel’s Facebook page she writes in part,  “I waffled and I tried, but I couldn’t vote for Burke, but I also DID NOT vote for Walker”

In essence, of course, in a very tight election where every vote counts her attempt at some ‘higher-calling’ about politics or policy did provide Walker with the absence of another vote against him.  And that matters.

I know Konkel will be at the keyboard to bang out missives about the plight of the homeless and rail against Republican ideas.   I am right there with her when it comes to knowing full-well we need to find a real solution for those who sleep outside and also to bring forces together to stem Republican over-reach.

But after her action today at the polling booth her pleas and angst will be empty of punch.  For better or worse Mary Burke is the path forward from the place we now reside.  No candidate is perfect and Rome was not built in a day.  But we all start with a first step.  A vote for Burke was that step.

Sadly, Brenda Konkel missed the chance to put her array of political concerns behind any candidate that could make them a priority.   She may be given a star for political purity, but a failing grade for political maturity.