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Primaries
  • Election Roundup: Jungle Primary and Kosher Sex Edition

    Though the main news from last night is that our long national nightmare of being confused by the #wirecall hashtag on Twitter is finally over, there was other primary news to digest. Here's what you missed:

    Redistricting left two incumbent Democrats competing for the nomination in New Jersey's 9th Congressional district, in a race that served as a proxy battle between House Clinton and House Obama — a cosplay of the least titillating episode of the Game of Thrones ever. Bill Clinton cast his favor upon Bill Pascrell while Barack Obama signaled, in the most tepid manner possible, that he supported Steve Rothman. Pascrell emerged the winner and will now face celebrity sex therapist Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, a former spiritual adviser to the late Michael Jackson.

    Under California's new jungle primary system, the top two choices will compete in the general election regardless of party affiliation. In the California 31st, a district considered by many to be a battleground in November, there were will be no Democrat competing in the general election, as a split liberal vote delivered the top two spots to Republicans. Perhaps good government progressives should have heeded the advice of Axl Rose in his exegesis on election law, Welcome to the Jungle. (I'm not the only one who reads that song this way, right?) "You gonna die," indeed.

    Also in California, the race described as "Two Jews, One Congressional Seat," will continue into the general election as Democratic congressmen Brad Sherman and Howard Berman took first and second place, respectively, in their primary. In fact, the situation in their newly drawn Los Angeles based district is reminiscent of the conflict in the middle east. Two groups with strong historical claims on the same soil, foisted together by the line drawing mandate of outside powers. Except in L.A., both sides get to vote on self-determination.

    Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: California, Democrats, New Jersey, Primaries
  • Ron Paul Revolution on Hold in Massachusetts

    Ron PaulFor dedicated free market enthusiasts, Ron Paul supporters are not very good at accepting the outcome of the political market when it rejects their product. And good for them! Though Paul has had limited appeal in the Republican primary, his supporters have nevertheless been racking up delegates in the hopes of influencing the GOP's platform at the Tampa convention.

    Recently, Paul supporters captured 22 of Nevada's 28 delegate slots and have taken control of the Minnesota delegation. But thanks to procedural shenanigans on the part of the Republican establishment in Massachusetts, the Revolution may not be television CSPAN 3 after all…

    A month after Mitt Romney's loyalists were trounced by supporters of Ron Paul in the former governor's home state caucuses, the Massachusetts Republican Party is trying to invalidate some ballots…

    To participate in the caucuses, voters had to be registered as Republicans before Feb. 15. Those whose names did not appear on registration lists were allowed to cast provisional ballots and told their votes would be counted if they were proven eligible and if the election was narrow enough to make a difference.

    But last week, the party's counsel began telling Republicans who were questioning the results that the provisional ballots would not be counted and that the rules had never allowed provisional ballots to be cast in the first place.

    Funny thing about the rules never allowing provisional votes: provisional ballots were printed, distributed and collected by the Massachusetts Republican Party, not random street vagrants. If they were never intended to be counted, why go through the trouble?

    Of course, whether or not Paul supporters are seated at the convention will have no effect on the final outcome. Many Paul delegates hail from states that will require them to cast ballots — at least on the first (and only) round — for Mitt Romney. Which means Paulites will be bound to a candidate who they don't really support.

    Just like everyone else at the convention. Maybe Ron Paul supporters are becoming real Republicans after all.

    Photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty Images


    Tags: Massachusetts, Primaries, Republicans, Ron Paul
  • Newt Gingrich Forgives Mitt Romney for Beating Him

    They really don't make them classier than this

    Newt Gingrich said he no longer holds a grudge against Mitt Romney, his one-time competitor for the Republican nomination for president.

    "Mitt Romney did what he had to do to become the nominee," Gingrich said. "He’s worked at this six years… When he got to the crunch, he was tough enough and smart enough to beat me in Florida," he told Chris Matthews on Hardball Thursday night.

    Tough enough and smart enough to beat Gingrich in Florida.

    And Virginia. And West Virginia.

    And Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, D.C., Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Vermont, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

    Plus American Samoa, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Isles, if you want to be a completist.

    But, if not for them, it would have come right down to the wire. So, you can see why Gingrich might be tempted to hold a grudge. But he's too good for that. And who knows, maybe a gracious guy like Gingrich would look good with a Secretary of State sash around his chest? Who knows? I'm just sayin'.

    Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Primaries, Republicans
  • Kentucky Is Ready for an Uncommitted President

    As was widely expected, Barack Obama had a rough time during last night's primaries in Arkansas and Kentucky, winning just 59% of the vote against little known attorney John Wolfe in the former contest and taking only 58% against "uncommitted" in the latter primary. In fact, uncommitted captured a majority of Kentucky counties, performing especially well in regions with more Cracker Barrels than people and more coal mines than dentist offices.

    Uncommited's result compares favorably to the 42% anti-war Democrat Eugene McCarthy earned in his 1968 New Hampshire foray against incumbent president Lyndon Johnson and the 37% Pat Buchanan won against George H. W. Bush in the 1992 New Hampshire primary.

    And these comparisons underestimate the strength of uncommitted. Between the 67% of the vote earned by Mitt Romney in the Kentucky primary, the 17% going to challengers that have withdrawn from the race and the unallocated remainder, it's fair to say that roughly 100% of Kentucky Republicans voted for uncommitted.

    Which raises the question, why not Uncommitted for America? Now that Generic Republican has faded in the polls in favor of, well, still a generic Republican, but not a very popular one, it's time to reconsider the positives uncommitted would bring to the table. He or she has never placed a dog atop a car. Nor has she placed a dog atop a grill. She's never supported a bailout or taken money from lobbyists. Never voted for a tax hike or a cut in Medicare benefits. She's never used a Teleprompter nor shut down a steel mill.

    In short, uncommitted would be the perfect candidate. If only we could find her birth certificate.

    Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Arkansas, Barack Obama, Kentucky, Mitt Romney, Primaries
  • Quote Unquote: Blame

    Joe Biden on the 40 percent of West Virginia Democrats who voted for an incarcerated felon over President Obama

    .

    "I don't blame people, they're frustrated, they're angry."

    .

    This is actually a minor gaffe by Biden standards. On a normal day, he would have said that he voted against Obama as well.


    Tags: Democrats, Joe Biden, Primaries, Quote Unquote, West Virginia