Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Bert Johnson still going to primary Conyers

With Clarke and Conyers switching districts, it's going to be smooth sailing right?

Maybe not. Highland Park State Senator Bert Johnson is going to primary Conyers anyway, no matter which district he runs. How this effects the race will be unknown.

From the Detroit news

State Sen. Bert Johnson, D-Highland Park, announced Friday he'll run for Congress in the 13th District.

The decision follows a move Sunday by freshman Rep. Hansen Clarke, D-Detroit, to run in the 14th District rather than his current 13th. Rep. John Conyers, the current 14th District representative, has not announced his intention, but it's expected he'll run in Clarke's 13th.

The swap by the two congressmen occurs after redistricting maps were approved recently by Gov. Rick Snyder. The new maps drastically changed the shape of the Detroit districts, and a switch would allow Clarke and Conyers to better align with their constituencies.

"I am indeed running," Johnson said on the "First Shift with Tony Trupiano Show" on WDTW-AM (1310).

"… It will be the 13th Congressional District."

Johnson had originally said he would run against Conyers in the 14th District, which includes part of Detroit, the Grosse Pointes and parts of Oakland County. The shift to the 13th includes the west side of Detroit, his hometown of Highland Park and parts of western Wayne County.

Johnson has a felony on his record. Robbery related. He was 19 at the time. I think he's 34 or 35 now. It'll be an issue, but it was a long time ago.

The big question to his chances is who else jumps in. In a one-on-one matchup between the two, I think the key will be the white ethnics and suburban blacks in the district. Westland, Redford, Garden City. Who sells there. They aren't Conyers voters. They are Glenn Anderson, Richard LeBlanc, Jim Plakus, and Eileen DeHart voters (I'd like to see DeHart or LeBlanc run). They prefer union democrats with more moderate reputations. Will they vote for Johnson with his record? Usually no. Over Conyers? That's an interesting decision. This isn't a Brenda Lawrence type of challenge here.

At worst, there's a choice. I don't think there will be many voting record differences between Johnson or Conyers. I think Conyers will survive, but who knows what will happen. I hope they all spend a ton of money in the primary. That's how Republicans would win in this race.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Clarke and Conyers to likely switch districts

This has been rumored for awhile. From Politico

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) avoided a perilous primary challenge Sunday when neighboring Rep. Hansen Clarke paved the way for the two Michigan Democrats to essentially swap congressional districts ahead of their reelection bids.

The maneuvering came less than two weeks after Republican Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law a new congressional map that carved up both Conyers’ and Clarke’s districts in a way that had them each representing many of the others’ constituents — a dynamic that led several Democrats to eye a primary against Conyers. But Clarke, a freshman, announced Sunday that he would run in the 14th District now held by Conyers — something Conyers had been quietly pushing for behind the scenes for weeks.

Here's the map. "Mr Monica" Conyers is in the Palmer Park neighborhood on Detroit's Northwest side. It's in that stretch of the 14th north of Highland Park. The old district was more of a West Side district. Clarke's in the 13th, but will be running in the 14th. He's on Detroit's East side, and a lot of the 14th represents that area. It's not a controversial carpetbagger type of move with their West/East side histories.

I think this is very significant though in regards to the primary. A Democrat will win these districts barring a Bill Jefferson type of situation, but these districts are now about 55% VRA minority districts instead of 65%+ districts. It is conceivable that a non-Detroit candidate, or even a white candidate, can win those districts.

That's more likely in the 14th, with Oakland County and the Grosse Pointes both in that district, being hostile to certain Detroit candidates. Conyers is more outspoken and is perceived as more confrontational in style than Clarke, and is choosing the district strictly in Wayne County and without the Pointes. His primary path is - at least right now, easier than Clarke's. Clarke will have a tougher path on paper, but I think he'd do better in Oakland/Pointes than Conyers. The Pointes lean republican, but will often vote in Democrat primaries in non gubernatorial elections. The state rep seat there is competitive, but the other districts are solidly democrat. They don't like "Mr Monica" Conyers. They didn't like the Barbara Rose Collins. They didn't like Kwame Kilpatrick, and took it out on his mom. Hansen Clarke isn't in that category as far as I know. Conservatives don't like his voting record, but they don't like the voting record of Gary Peters either. These potential primaries are more about style, corruption, and attitude than the actual voting records.

Brenda Lawrence, Southfield mayor, may be running in Clarke's district. Gary Peters (lives in 9th, next door to Pontiac/W.Bloomfield), and Tim Melton (Pontiac or neighboring Auburn Hills) also might run. Another candidate is Bert Johnson, a state senator from the City of Detroit. He planned on running against Conyers, not Clarke. I don't know if he'll change his plans or not. He has won several times as a state legislator though. Other than that, I don't know much about him. I think the biggest factor in how a primary challenge goes will be the mouths of the candidates or their top aides, and how antagonistic each particular candidate is towards suburbs or whitey (not the same thing). With less and less of the district being in Detroit, the key is for there to be a balance in style not ticking off either side too much. This district would favor more Dennis Archer and less Sharon McPhail. That's why I think Clarke would be a much tougher opponent to challenge in this district than "Mr Monica" Conyers. There isn't the level of dislike for Clarke outside of the city as there is for the name Conyers (Or Kilpatrick, Rose-Collins, Coleman A Young). I don't think Peters would win a primary. I think a lot of his core support in Pontiac was due to who he isn't instead of who he is. Melton? Without Auburn Hills, that would be a tougher go for him. Brenda Lawrence would be a very strong challenger however, with Southfield's added significance with Detroit's population drops.

The 13th is more favorable to Conyers with him not having to deal with the Pointes or Oakland County, but it might not be a free pass. He has several white-majority working class suburbs which are democrats and will vote in that party's primary. He wouldn't have to face Brenda Lawrence here, but a guy like Glenn Anderson could give him a tough race. Romulus, Wayne, Westland, Garden City, Inkster, Dearborn Heights, and Redford are all new to the district. Anderson represented Westland, Garden City, and Redford. Will Detroit former state senator Buzz Thomas (depending on where he lives) go for it? He planned on it before and stepped back. I think Conyers is favored to win a primary, but I don't think it will be a cakewalk.

Keep an eye on the primaries here if there are any. While the incumbents are favored, certain candidates running could make this a very interesting race.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

State Senate Redistricting - District 27 (SD-27)

State Senate - District 27
Current Rep – Open (Gleason termed out and drawn outside district)

2010 Results - Old District (27th)
John Gleason - 51,666
Vernon Molnar -  23,920

This district is a blue sink district. It is even more democrat than the old district. It picks up from Robertson's district Clio, Vienna Twp, Mt Morris, Forest Twp, Richfield Twp, and Burton. All of those areas tilt from leans dem to dem stronghold. It drops Montrose, Flushing, Clayton Twp, Gaines Twp, Argentine Twp, Fenton Twp (not city), and Linden to the 33rd district. Those areas range from GOP leaning Fenton to solidly dem Montrose. It drops Fenton City and Mundy Twp to Dave Robertson and the 14th district.
It keeps Flint City, Flint Twp, Swartz Creek, and Genesee Township. The big race here is the Democrat primary unless we get a Dan Rostenkowski or Bill Jefferson type of situation.

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Genesee County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Burton 4981 9057 14038 -4076 35.48% 64.52% -29.04%
Clio 384 761 1145 -377 33.54% 66.46% -32.93%
Flint 5334 42840 48174 -37506 11.07% 88.93% -77.86%
Flint Twp 4613 11234 15847 -6621 29.11% 70.89% -41.78%
Forest Twp 1089 1516 2605 -427 41.80% 58.20% -16.39%
Genesee Twp 3313 7148 10461 -3835 31.67% 68.33% -36.66%
Mt Morris 387 938 1325 -551 29.21% 70.79% -41.58%
Mt Morris Twp 2052 8454 10506 -6402 19.53% 80.47% -60.94%
Richfield Twp 1911 2890 4801 -979 39.80% 60.20% -20.39%
Swartz Creek 1294 1988 3282 -694 39.43% 60.57% -21.15%
Thetford Twp 1360 2314 3674 -954 37.02% 62.98% -25.97%
Vienna Twp 2715 4175 6890 -1460 39.40% 60.60% -21.19%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 29433 93315 122748 -63882 23.98% 76.02% -52.04%

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Genesee County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Burton 5829 8304 14133 -2475 41.24% 58.76% -17.51%
Clio 533 691 1224 -158 43.55% 56.45% -12.91%
Flint 7558 38395 45953 -30837 16.45% 83.55% -67.11%
Flint Twp 5747 10071 15818 -4324 36.33% 63.67% -27.34%
Forest Twp 1271 1414 2685 -143 47.34% 52.66% -5.33%
Genesee Twp 3805 7010 10815 -3205 35.18% 64.82% -29.63%
Mt Morris 479 906 1385 -427 34.58% 65.42% -30.83%
Mt Morris Twp 2467 7873 10340 -5406 23.86% 76.14% -52.28%
Richfield Twp 2149 2630 4779 -481 44.97% 55.03% -10.06%
Swartz Creek 1459 1753 3212 -294 45.42% 54.58% -9.15%
Thetford Twp 1611 2246 3857 -635 41.77% 58.23% -16.46%
Vienna Twp 3083 3851 6934 -768 44.46% 55.54% -11.08%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 35991 85144 121135 -49153 29.71% 70.29% -40.58%

Last State Senate GOP Dem Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Genesee County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Flint 2943 21632 24575 -18689 11.98% 88.02% -76.05%
Flint Twp 2741 6986 9727 -4245 28.18% 71.82% -43.64%
Forest Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Genesee Twp 1850 4144 5994 -2294 30.86% 69.14% -38.27%
Mt Morris

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Mt Morris Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Richfield Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Swartz Creek 774 1314 2088 -540 37.07% 62.93% -25.86%
Thetford Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Vienna Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 8308 34076 42384 -25768 19.60% 80.40% -60.80%

State Senate Redistricting - District 26 (SD-26)

State Senate - District 26
Current Rep – Tonya Schuitmaker or Open

This district was carved out from scratch. Population shift in Michigan took a seat out of East Michigan and put it in West Michigan. Most of the old 26th district is now the 14th. This new district consists of Van Buren County (From the 20th/21st District and John Proos/Schuitmaker), Allegan County (from the 24th District and Rick Jones), and Gaines Twp/Kentwood of Kent County from Dave Hildenbrand and Mark Jansen in the 28th/29th districts.

This district gives Tonya Schuitmaker an option for 2014. She's in Van Buren County, but most of her district is Kalamazoo County. The new 26th district has solidly republican Allegan County, but could have a geographic primary disadvantage as she has not represented northern Allegan County or the Kentwood area.  The new Kalamazoo County district is a swing district down ticket which has voted for Republican State Senators, but leans democrat on paper.

Whatever Schuitmaker's decision is, this district is safe for the GOP, despite McCain cratering in West Michigan. Northern Allegan County (outside Saugatuck and Douglas) and Gaines Township make this safe unless there's a disaster. Southern Allegan County isn't solidly GOP, but leans slightly GOP outside of a few areas. Van Buren County is competitive, although leans GOP downticket outside of a couple of places like Covert. Schuitmaker only lost heavily minority Covert in her 2008 state rep race. Gaines Township in Kent County is a base area. Kentwood has gotten very competitive lately with the influx of Grand Rapids blacks to the area. It flipped to Obama in 08 and Kerry actually did better than Gore there. That's probably why Kentwood got put into a different state senate district than Grand Rapids itself.

Whatever Schuimaker does here, this district is probably one of the safer ones in the state for us.

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Allegan County 30061 24165 54226 5896 55.44% 44.56% 10.87%
Van Buren County 15534 18588 34122 -3054 45.52% 54.48% -8.95%
Kent County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Gaines Twp 7542 4788 12330 2754 61.17% 38.83% 22.34%
Kentwood 10636 12587 23223 -1951 45.80% 54.20% -8.40%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 63773 60128 123901 3645 51.47% 48.53% 2.94%

Bush Kerry Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Allegan County 34022 19355 53377 14667 63.74% 36.26% 27.48%
Van Buren County 17634 16151 33785 1483 52.19% 47.81% 4.39%
Kent County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Gaines Twp 8110 3202 11312 4908 71.69% 28.31% 43.39%
Kentwood 13014 9126 22140 3888 58.78% 41.22% 17.56%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 72780 47834 120614 24946 60.34% 39.66% 20.68%

State Senate Redistricting - District 25 (SD-25)

State Senate - District 25
Current Rep – Phil Pavlov (R-St Clair)

2010 Results - Old District (25th)
Phil Pavlov -53,342
John Nugent -26,393

This district leans GOP and even voted for McCain, but has been close in the past under previous incarnations. It drops solidly Republican Lapeer County to the 31st and Mike Green and picks up competitive Huron County and usually Republican Sanilac County from Green. It also picks up some Republican parts of northern Macomb County from Jack Brandenburg. Over 1/2 of the district is in St Clair County, which is a swing county that votes GOP more often than dem.

Phil Pavlov won this district in an open seat by a big margin, over 2-1 overall, and in St Clair County. The previous rep, Jud Gilbert, won big in 2002 and had a closer than expected race in the disaster year of 2006. Both GOP and Democrat state reps represented parts of this district. One of the state rep districts in this territory went from Mike Green (R) to Terry Brown (D) to Kurt Damrow (R). Another went from Steven Ehardt (R) to John Espinoza (D) to Paul Muxlow (R). Another went from Dan Acciavatti (R) to Jennifer Haase (D) to Andrea LaFontaine (R). Two, if not all three of those districts I'm pretty certain voted for McCain. Pavlov's won easily though, both for state rep, and state senate. This is a conservative district, but fiercely independent.

I think this district will likely be safe for Pavlov, but I'd keep an eye on this when it opens or if John Espinoza or Terry Brown run for it. That could make this a tough race and each of them have a lot of support in parts of the thumb. Haase could make a run as well, but she may have a geography disadvantage there being from Macomb County.

This one should be ours at least until it opens, but don't take it for granted.

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Huron County 8434 8367 16801 67 50.20% 49.80% 0.40%
Sanilac County 10679 9047 19726 1632 54.14% 45.86% 8.27%
St Clair County 38356 40677 79033 -2321 48.53% 51.47% -2.94%
Macomb County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Armada Twp 1604 1252 2856 352 56.16% 43.84% 12.32%
Memphis 227 154 381 73 59.58% 40.42% 19.16%
New Baltimore 3003 2971 5974 32 50.27% 49.73% 0.54%
Richmond  1454 1378 2832 76 51.34% 48.66% 2.68%
Richmond Twp 1142 723 1865 419 61.23% 38.77% 22.47%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 64899 64569 129468 330 50.13% 49.87% 0.25%

Bush Kerry Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Huron County 9671 7629 17300 2042 55.90% 44.10% 11.80%
Sanilac County 12632 7883 20515 4749 61.57% 38.43% 23.15%
St Clair County 42740 36174 78914 6566 54.16% 45.84% 8.32%
Macomb County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Armada Twp 1797 1062 2859 735 62.85% 37.15% 25.71%
Memphis 227 170 397 57 57.18% 42.82% 14.36%
New Baltimore 3103 2440 5543 663 55.98% 44.02% 11.96%
Richmond  1610 1177 2787 433 57.77% 42.23% 15.54%
Richmond Twp 1156 674 1830 482 63.17% 36.83% 26.34%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 72936 57209 130145 15727 56.04% 43.96% 12.08%

GOP DEM Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Huron County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Sanilac County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
St Clair County 34791 16246 51037 18545 68.17% 31.83% 36.34%
Macomb County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Armada Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
New Baltimore

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Richmond Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 34791 16246 51037 18545 68.17% 31.83% 36.34%

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Rick Perry - The most electable candidate right now? Yes, if he plays his cards right

With Perry jumping in, it's looking like a three way race right now in the top tier. Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann, and Rick Perry. Romney is a quasi-frontrunner right now, but is by no means running away with this. There is a LOT of opposition to Mitt Romney for several reasons, most notably Romneycare.  Bachmann won the Iowa strong poll and is very well known for her strong conservative stances in Congress.

Now comes Rick Perry, who did well in the straw poll as a write in who did not compete. That brings two questions. Who is Rick Perry? Can he win? The answer to the 2nd part is, yes.

Rick Perry is the Governor of Texas. Governors usually win elections to the presidency. Bush, Clinton, Reagan, and Carter were all governors. Before he was governor, he was Lieutenant Governor, which is a separate elected position than the governor in Texas (unlike Michigan). Before that, he served two terms as Agricultural Commissioner. He's held statewide office since 1990 in Texas. Rick Perry is a party switcher. That's not unusual in Texas, especially when his dad was a democrat county commissioner. He was a state legislator from 1984-1990. For five of those years, he was a democrat.  He switched in 1989. Before election, he was a farmer for 13 years. At election time, there will be 28 years of experience, 20 of which is statewide executive experience. That dwarfs the Peter Principle in Chief.

From looking at his home of Haskell County on an elections map, it was still yellow dog territory there. It was Sam Rayburn country. His congressional district (13th ) was democrat for all except two years until the 84 elections. It went dem again from 88-94. Bush, from Midland, barely won Haskell County in his first election. Bush 50%, Gore 47% Bill Clinton, despite losing Texas twice, won it twice. Michael Dukakis won the county. Jimmy Carter won it twice. Ronald Reagan won it in the 84 landslide, and the next Republican to win that district was George W Bush. Bush and McCain both got over 60% against far left candidates like John Kerry and Barack Obama. Looking at where Perry's from, I can see where he was a late party switcher. Haskell County is not Midland County. That's ranch country, not oil country.

Perry's going to be attacked for his party switching. I look back at my own family in 1988. There were a lot more democrats, albeit many were Reagan Democrats, than there are today. People can change. One of the most hardline democrats in the family back at that period later had a Joe Hune sign in front of the house. Joe's no RINO, that's for sure. How I'd judge Perry's switch and whether it was a real party switch or a Arlen Specter type of double switch (D to R to D but being the same clown the whole time) is to look at Perry's record. He has a 20 year record as a Republican official. Perry can use the old line of the democrats leaving him. They are no longer the party of working families, but for rich leftists like Soros, Buffett, Hollywood, and Gates.

Some say that Perry will be like George W Bush. Not exactly. Perry was never really Bush's guy. In fact, by all accounts Bush quietly backed Kay Bailey Hutchison in the primary against Perry in the last election. He didn't publically make an endorsement, but Dick Cheney and George HW Bush did back Hutchison. From what I've heard, Bush and Perry aren't close, but you won't hear them say anything about it.

The media is going to try and paint Perry as "The social conservative candidate." When you have a 20 year record, you have a lot more than that in your campaign.  I think Perry's best chance is to focus on the top three issues. Jobs, Jobs, and Jobs. It's the economy. That's the advantage has with Perry having a long record from Texas. Texas is in much better shape than a lot of states when it comes to the economy. That's where the growth is. One comment Perry made when asked if his campaign could sell in swing states like Pennsylvania is "I think people in Pennsylvania want jobs too." Perry's experience is what separates him from Bachmann. Perry can run on the economy, while also being a social conservative. Bachmann can run on as a social conservative activist who is also a fiscal conservative. The subtle wording is the difference between the candidates. It's the emphasis. I like Bachmann. I don't think she can win a presidential race right now. I'd like to see her stay in congress. We need her there. Perry won't emphasize the social issues as much as Bachmann, but he'll be reliable on life issues when needed. He is outspoken on the 2nd Amendment, and some coyote made the mistake of going near his daughters dog.

Compare Perry's experience as an executive to Obama. It's no comparison. 20 years (10 as governor) as a large state executive to 4 with the country. Economic matters? Anybody is better than Obama, but 40% of the new jobs have been created in Texas. Weakness - Perry is a Texas governor. So was Bush. Turn that into a positive. Perry's not Bush and had more experience on the state level than Bush. 10 years as governor against 6. Texas created jobs. Obama lost jobs. That's why Perry can win.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

State Senate Redistricting - District 24 (SD-24)

State Senate - District 24
Current Rep – Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge)

2010 Results - Old District (24th)
Rick Jones - 64,039
Michelle DiSano - 30,052

Rick Jones took one for the team here. He gave up an almost 60% district in a good year for a potentially very competitive district. He dropped GOP strongholds of Barry and Allegan Counties and picked up Clinton (from Cropsey/Emmons and the 33rd district), Shiawassee (from 22nd District and Joe Hune), and part of Ingham County (From 23rd and Whitmer) creating an "outer Capitol" district. I think most pundits are going to call this one safe. I can't do that. I'll call this lean R for now. It might be safe for Jones, who has won countywide in Eaton County for years back when he was the sheriff, but this seat can't be taken for granted. It would have been safe R 10 years ago, but it's treading blue enough now to be a swing seat in a bad year. There's a lot of government workers here.

Eaton County is erratic in its voting. It voted for Granholm twice, Bush twice, Clinton, Obama, Sue Tabor (possible most social conservative rep in the house), Rick Jones, Mark Schauer, and Joe Schwarz. If I had to classify it overall, it's somewhat social conservative, pro-gun, but pro-government. Delta Township is a swing area, which probably now leans blue. Charlotte, Eaton Rapids, and Grand Ledge are swing areas that are more GOP than dem but winnable for either side. The most democrat portion of the county is the portion of Lansing in the county. That's majority minority, and more democrat than the portion of Lansing in Ingham County by percentage.

Clinton County used to be a base GOP county. Now it's very competitive. Obama won it, so did Granholm, breaking a long streak of Republican wins. There's a sizable government worker population here too, but the big reason for the change is East Lansing moving north. Bath Township, and East Lansing annexing area. It's not the swing area of Bath Township of 20 years ago, or even back when I was a student at MSU. If you want to know what this county is competitive now, go to Abbot Road in East Lansing and drive north, past the County line where it turns into Chandler. You'll see a lot of new student apartments. It's like never leaving East Lansing. The rest of Clinton County is strong GOP as it was before. DeWitt and St Johns are competitive, the rest usually is not.

Shiawassee County has always been competitive but outside of 2008, has moved our way. It's a commuter county for Lansing and Flint, so there's a union presence. The democrats they support are more of the old style blue collar union types rather than the academia types. They voted for Bush twice, Posthumus, Granholm, and Obama. They voted for Joe Hune twice. Their state rep district has been republican since Larry Julian won in an upset in 98. I believe it's been dem for about 20 years before that.

The portion of Ingham County here is republican leaning, but competitive. Williamston and Webberville have a lot of Lansing commuters, but don't have the East Lansing influence to the extent of Bath Township. Like Shiawassee and outer Eaton/Clinton Counties, the people there want to be away from the city. Past Okemos.

Overall, keep an eye on this one. We can't take it for granted. Bush won it in 04 by 15000 votes, but Obama won it by over 8000.

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Clinton County 19726 20005 39731 -279 49.65% 50.35% -0.70%
Eaton County 25900 30742 56642 -4842 45.73% 54.27% -8.55%
Shiawassee County 16268 19397 35665 -3129 45.61% 54.39% -8.77%
Ingham County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Leroy Twp 927 830 1757 97 52.76% 47.24% 5.52%
Locke Twp 549 471 1020 78 53.82% 46.18% 7.65%
Wheatfield Twp 525 477 1002 48 52.40% 47.60% 4.79%
Williamston 945 1105 2050 -160 46.10% 53.90% -7.80%
Williamstown Twp 1582 1653 3235 -71 48.90% 51.10% -2.19%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 66422 74680 141102 -8258 47.07% 52.93% -5.85%

Bush Kerry Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Clinton County 21989 15483 37472 6506 58.68% 41.32% 17.36%
Eaton County 29781 25411 55192 4370 53.96% 46.04% 7.92%
Shiawassee County 19407 16881 36288 2526 53.48% 46.52% 6.96%
Ingham County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Leroy Twp 1103 674 1777 429 62.07% 37.93% 24.14%
Locke Twp 657 361 1018 296 64.54% 35.46% 29.08%
Wheatfield Twp 624 375 999 249 62.46% 37.54% 24.92%
Williamston 1065 869 1934 196 55.07% 44.93% 10.13%
Williamstown Twp 1824 1373 3197 451 57.05% 42.95% 14.11%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 76450 61427 137877 15023 55.45% 44.55% 10.90%

Last St Senate GOP DEM Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Clinton County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Eaton County 25674 14111 39785 11563 64.53% 35.47% 29.06%
Shiawassee County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Ingham County:

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Leroy Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Locke Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Wheatfield Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Williamstown Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 25674 14111 39785 11563 64.53% 35.47% 29.06%

State Senate Redistricting - District 23 (SD-23)

State Senate - District 23
Current Rep – Gretchen Whitmer (D-East Lansing)

2010 Results - Old District (23rd)
Gretchen Whitmer - 49,990
Kyle Haubrich - 28,133

This district is a democrat stronghold, and that did not change. There was some change among the rural portions. It picks up Stockbridge, Mason, Vevay Twp, Bunker Hill Twp, and Leslie City/Township from Joe Hune. It drops Locke Twp, Leroy Twp, Williamston, Williamstown Twp, and Wheatfield Twp to the 24th District and Rick Jones. From a partisan standpoint, there's little change, although this district may be slightly more democrat giving up the Williamston and Webberville areas and taking on Stockbridge and Mason.

I believe Whitmer has one more turn if she wants it, first winning in a 2005 special election to replace Virg Bernero, now the mayor of Lansing. Whitmer has been rumored to make a statewide run. She's an heir of Blue Cross/Blue Shield so she has the money and connections to make a run whether it be governor or AG, although her very left wing record will be an issue. Blue Cross isn't all that popular either. I wouldn't be surprised if she runs against Bill Schuette for AG however, and I think that would be a tough defense right now. I don't expect her to run for Congress after her term is up because of her kids. DC's a big move, and East Lansing is obviously commuting distance to Lansing.

When this opens up, there could be a long line of challengers. Barb Byrum might want her mom's old state senate seat. Mark Meadows is a termed out state rep and former East Lansing mayor. Joan Bauer is a state rep in Lansing with strong support of the social left base. It's been solidly Democrat for years. Whitmer, Bernero, Dianne Byrum, and Debbie Stabenow. This is Stabenow's old seat. It'll probably take a Dan Rostenkowski or Bill Jefferson situation to win here.

McCain Obama Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Ingham County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Alaiedon Twp 991 906 1897 85 52.24% 47.76% 4.48%
Aurelius Twp 1050 960 2010 90 52.24% 47.76% 4.48%
Bunker Hill Twp 517 479 996 38 51.91% 48.09% 3.82%
Delhi Twp 5894 7856 13750 -1962 42.87% 57.13% -14.27%
East Lansing 5376 17179 22555 -11803 23.84% 76.16% -52.33%
Ingham Twp 690 598 1288 92 53.57% 46.43% 7.14%
Lansing 12180 38228 50408 -26048 24.16% 75.84% -51.67%
Lansing Twp 1336 2805 4141 -1469 32.26% 67.74% -35.47%
Leslie  357 435 792 -78 45.08% 54.92% -9.85%
Leslie Twp 638 641 1279 -3 49.88% 50.12% -0.23%
Mason 1802 2235 4037 -433 44.64% 55.36% -10.73%
Meridian Twp 8080 14288 22368 -6208 36.12% 63.88% -27.75%
Onondaga Twp 698 711 1409 -13 49.54% 50.46% -0.92%
Stockbridge Twp 941 928 1869 13 50.35% 49.65% 0.70%
Vevay Twp 1075 927 2002 148 53.70% 46.30% 7.39%
White Oak Twp 327 282 609 45 53.69% 46.31% 7.39%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 41952 89458 131410 -47506 31.92% 68.08% -36.15%

Bush Kerry Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Ingham County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Alaiedon Twp 1088 838 1926 250 56.49% 43.51% 12.98%
Aurelius Twp 1222 771 1993 451 61.31% 38.69% 22.63%
Bunker Hill Twp 549 417 966 132 56.83% 43.17% 13.66%
Delhi Twp 6831 6105 12936 726 52.81% 47.19% 5.61%
East Lansing 5119 12647 17766 -7528 28.81% 71.19% -42.37%
Ingham Twp 734 463 1197 271 61.32% 38.68% 22.64%
Lansing 16101 32102 48203 -16001 33.40% 66.60% -33.20%
Lansing Twp 1707 2436 4143 -729 41.20% 58.80% -17.60%
Leslie  403 363 766 40 52.61% 47.39% 5.22%
Leslie Twp 806 468 1274 338 63.27% 36.73% 26.53%
Mason 1989 1880 3869 109 51.41% 48.59% 2.82%
Meridian Twp 9589 12378 21967 -2789 43.65% 56.35% -12.70%
Onondaga Twp 768 568 1336 200 57.49% 42.51% 14.97%
Stockbridge Twp 1000 708 1708 292 58.55% 41.45% 17.10%
Vevay Twp 1177 816 1993 361 59.06% 40.94% 18.11%
White Oak Twp 378 247 625 131 60.48% 39.52% 20.96%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 49461 73207 122668 -23746 40.32% 59.68% -19.36%

Last State Senate GOP Dem Total Diff GOP DEM Diff
Ingham County

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Alaiedon Twp 762 672 1434 90 53.14% 46.86% 6.28%
Aurelius Twp 836 699 1535 137 54.46% 45.54% 8.93%
Bunker Hill Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Delhi Twp 4352 5057 9409 -705 46.25% 53.75% -7.49%
East Lansing 2244 6800 9044 -4556 24.81% 75.19% -50.38%
Ingham Twp 553 393 946 160 58.46% 41.54% 16.91%
Lansing 8218 21056 29274 -12838 28.07% 71.93% -43.85%
Lansing Twp 903 1732 2635 -829 34.27% 65.73% -31.46%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Leslie Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Meridian Twp 5839 9805 15644 -3966 37.32% 62.68% -25.35%
Onondaga Twp 528 455 983 73 53.71% 46.29% 7.43%
Stockbridge Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Vevay Twp

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
White Oak Twp 217 179 396 38 54.80% 45.20% 9.60%

0 0 #DIV/0! #DIV/0! #DIV/0!
Total 24452 46848 71300 -22396 34.29% 65.71% -31.41%

Pawlenty drops out

The Ames Straw Poll claims its first victim.

From Politico

AMES, Iowa - After spending much of his money to finish a distant third in the Ames Straw Poll, Tim Pawlenty ended his presidential bid Sunday.

“We needed to get some lift to continue on and have a pathway forward and that didn’t happen, so I’m announcing on your show that I’m ending my campaign for president,” the former governor said on “This Week.”

I think the biggest thing that hurt him is one of the most unfortunate reasons. People find him boring. That really should have no effect at all in a political race. Policy gets boring, but it's important. I've always been more of a behind the scenes person and a process/policy person instead of the one who tries to get in front of the camera. Pawlenty hints at the boring part here.

“What I brought forward, I thought, was a rational, established, credible, strong record of results, based on experience governing - a two-term governor of a blue state,” said Pawlenty. “But I think the audience, so to speak, was looking for something different.”

This guy won a state which is very difficult to win. Twice. Once in a very bad year. However, as I've been told by many "He doesn't have a chance. He's boring." I think this is Bill Clinton's biggest influence on the GOP. Many Republicans are afraid of a candidate who is viewed as boring because they think they will come out as "Bob Dole" in 96, losing to a dynamic speaker. Here's a newsflash. Unless you come out with the ghost of Reagan - and there's only one Reagan Republican - you're not going to out speech Obama and his teleprompter in style. I don't like Obama's style at all, but I'm not the person you're trying to convince either in a general election. Personally, I'd run against Obama's charisma and contrast style vs substance. He's the Peter Principle in Chief.

Now who gets that 13%? Pawlenty was running hard against Bachmann. I don't think most of his support will get going there. I think Perry is the one that's going to most benefit from this. Pawlenty was the gubernatorial alternative to Romney. Perry stepped into that role as soon as he jumped in. Pawlenty's quote outside of the blue state - "What I brought forward, I thought, was a rational, established, credible, strong record of results, based on experience governing" can fit to Perry as well. Perry's been governor 10 years. Perry's state isn't blue at all, but it is extremely diverse. Texas is a minority-majority state. Perry's biggest issue nationally may be George W Bush being his precedessor. Whether that works to an advantage or disadvantage or no effect in both the primary and general remains to be seen. Perry's his own guy, though. It's been almost 11 years since Bush was in the governor's mansion in Texas. Bush left after 6 years. Perry would have 10 years if he won.

Romney and Huntsman are the other governors. They obviously aren't hurt by Pawlenty's drop, but I think Romney's already viewed as the quasi-frontrunner. I think the question will be if Romney can hang on through the primaries. We'll see.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Michele Bachmann wins straw poll. Ron Paul 2nd

The important thing about the Ames Straw poll isn't just who wins, although it's a big deal for Bachmann who is now looking more as a serious candidate. What's also important is who places, and who craters. From Reuters

AMES, Iowa (Reuters) - Michele Bachmann won the Iowa straw poll on Saturday in the first big test of the 2012 Republican presidential race, as Texas Governor Rick Perry launched a White House bid that could reshape the race.

How important is winning the straw poll? I don't really like wikipedia as a source, but this looks legit.

1979 - Winner is George HW Bush. 1980 nominee - Ronald Reagan.
1987 - Pat Robertson won. George HW Bush nominee. Bush finished 3rd. Bob Dole finished 2nd.
1995 - Bob Dole and Phil Gramm tied. Dole was nominee. Gramm dropped out early after losing Louisiana to Pat Buchanan.
1999 - George W Bush won. Bush was nominee.
2007 - Mitt Romney won. McCain was nominee. McCain finished 10th, while skipping the event.

In other words, it's historically important to place, if not necessarily win. Here's the results.
Place Candidate Votes Percentage
1 Michele Bachmann 4,823 28.5%
2 Ron Paul 4,671 27.6%
3 Tim Pawlenty 2,293 13.6%
4 Rick Santorum 1,657 9.8%
5 Herman Cain 1,456 8.6%
6 Rick Perry (write-in) 718 4.3%
7 Mitt Romney 567 3.4%
8 Newt Gingrich 385 2.3%
9 Jon Huntsman 69 0.4%
10 Thaddeus McCotter 35 0.2%
Scattering 162 1.0%

According to National Review those competing in the Ames poll are Bachmann, Pawlenty, Paul, Cain, McCotter and Santorum. Romney, Huntsman, and Gingrich wern't competing as hard. Perry just announced. Palin isn't in, and probably got most of those 162 votes. McCotter was not allowed in the debate. 

My analysis and two cents on this.
Ames Winners:
Bachmann - She won it. She's on the map. She worked hard in Iowa and finished first. She is Iowa born, and that could have helped.

Paul - He's back. With the fiscal clustermuck, I think more conservatives that are less isolationist than he is will look at him more closely. Historically, there's always been a strong minority of republicans who are isolationist and more who are non-interventionist. I think it'll get stronger again as someone takes Pat Buchanan's old role. Ron Paul is becoming that face.

Rick Perry - He did the best by far of those skipping the race. He beat Mitt, who won this last time. He almost doubled Newt, and dwarfed McCotter and Huntsman. His 6th place finish was based solely on write-in votes. This is a good start for Perry.

Ames Losers
McCotter - I like Thad McCotter He's a good guy. I also think he should have run for senate instead. McCotter was locked out of the debate, so this isn't all his fault. However, 35 votes out of about 17000? He probably met more people than 35 in Iowa.

Huntsman - He can recover because he's a multi-millionaire many times over. This still isn't a good showing, even skipping the race. He'll have to make a big move in New Hampshire, McCain 08 style to have a shot.

Santorum - Santorum did better than I expected finishing 4th. The problem he has is that much of the same group that would vote for him would also vote for Bachmann. You won't out pro-life Santorum, but Bachmann can match Santorum in this area, both in stance and intensity.

Cain - I somewhat hesitate to put Cain here, but he finished behind most of the rest who competed strong in Ames. I think he'll survive this, but he'll have to make a move quick or he'll be just the protest vote candidate of 2012 of those who don't like the rest of the crowd. I think Ron Paul is hurting Cain. I like Cain, but his election history is his weak point. He finished 2nd in his one major statewide primary race in Georgia.

Newt Gingrich - Finished behind Romney and Perry and had probably close to 100% name recognition despite skipping the race.

Too Early to Tell:

Pawlenty. Was 3rd place enough? He got less than 1/2 of the votes of his fellow Minnesotan, but they were aimed at different crowds. I'm not ready to write off this campaign yet, but Pawlenty is going to have to make a move. He's going to have to dent Romney a bit and get a lot of the folks that would otherwise vote for him look at Pawlenty.

Romney - He announced he was skipping early on. He finished 7th, ahead of most who skipped the race, except Perry. Perry's votes were write in.

Who is going to drop? That's the most important fallout that happens due to Ames straw poll results. McCain stayed in despite 10th out of 11th in 07 and won nomination. He was in the same shoes Romney is now with a 2nd place finish in the last primary overall looking for another shot. Tommy Thompson finished 6th and dropped early due to the 07 performance. The field's starting to narrow some. The question is by how much.