Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Last Call For State Of The Keystone

A lot can happen between now and November, and almost certainly will, but for now, Pennsylvania Democrats John Fetterman and Josh Shapiro are leading two of the worst Republicans running this year.

A USA Today Network/Suffolk University poll in Pennsylvania released this week suggests a clear U.S. Senate frontrunner -- with a tighter race for governor.

According to the Suffolk University Political Research Center, Democrat John Fetterman holds a 9-point lead over Republican Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania's closely watched U.S. Senate race. The two are seeking to fill the seat being vacated by Republican U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey.

In the state's gubernatorial race, Democrat Josh Shapiro has a 4-point advantage over Republican Doug Mastriano, which is within the poll's plus or minus 4.4-percentage-point margin of error. Green Party candidate Christina “PK” DiGiulio and Libertarian Party candidate Matt Hackenburg are polling at just 1% each.

The early leads for Fetterman and Shapiro come despite a Republican surge that's reduced Democrats' registration lead from 8 percentage points to 4 percentage points since 2018 in the state.

Fetterman and Shapiro also seem to be bucking the headwinds of a poor economy and disapproval of President Joe Biden. More than 44% of poll respondents said economic conditions in Pennsylvania are poor, while 36% said they are fair and just 16% said they are good.

"I use the words 'thread the needle' because I always think of campaigns as patchwork, as a political fabrics," Suffolk University Political Research Center Director David Paleologos said. "It's really a fine line given Biden's disapproval rate and the dire state of the economy."
Democrats are winning despite the economy in PA because the Republicans are so awful that they are largely unelectable. Dr. Oz is a quack huckster and Mastriano is a Trumpian lunatic on par with MTG or Boebert. People don't want to put them in charge, imagine that.


Midterm Madness, Con't

The special election for TX-34 went to Republican Mayra Flores outright, and Republicans are now predicting the end of the Democratic party and a permanent Hispanic voter shift to the GOP. Chickens are being counted before hatching, I suspect.
A U.S. House district in South Texas will send a Republican to Congress for the first time in its 10-year history.

Mayra Flores, a Republican and respiratory-care health aide, scored a significant victory in a special election on Tuesday for the party, which has been trying to capitalize on its successes in 2020 in the Democratic stronghold of the Rio Grande Valley. She will be the first Latina Republican from Texas in Congress.

Ms. Flores defeated three opponents in the special election to replace former Representative Filemon Vela, a Democrat who retired this year before the end of his term. She captured more than 50 percent of the vote in Texas’ 34th Congressional District, according to The Associated Press, and will avoid an expected runoff with Dan Sanchez, a Democrat and former commissioner in Cameron County.

Her win may only be temporary, however.

The special election was held to determine who would fill the remainder of Mr. Vela’s term until the end of this year. Voters in the general election in November will decide who will become the district’s permanent representative beginning in January. Representative Vicente Gonzalez, who currently represents a neighboring district, is the Democratic nominee for November, and is widely favored to win the race against Ms. Flores, who is also running to fill the seat permanently in November.

Republicans have directed enormous sums of money and attention to the race in recent weeks, seeking an early victory in a district that includes the border city of Brownsville. Ms. Flores raised 16 times the amount of money that Mr. Sanchez did. And she and her allies have spent more than $1 million on television advertisements, while Democrats have largely stayed off the air.

Republicans believe they have found an ideal candidate for the region in Ms. Flores, who immigrated to the United States from Mexico as a young child. Her parents spent years working as migrant farmworkers in Texas. She is the wife of a Border Patrol agent and has campaigned on strict immigration enforcement in the overwhelmingly Mexican American district.
SO It's all over, the Dems are doomed, no reason to vote, permanent GOP control, etc, except for the fact that Texas's redictricting for November's election actually makes it more likely a Democrat will win in November because of gerrymandering.
Dems did miscaulculate here on the special, narrowing their margin in the House for now, yes.

I bet November here has a different result. Indeed, Larry Sabato still rates this a leans Democratic win...but not a safe one by any means.

Vote like your country depends on it.

Vote Like Your Country Depends On It, Con't

The dry run for the 2022 GOP effort to disenfranchise millions of Democratic votes begins this week in New Mexico, where Republicans in Alamagordo are refusing to certify votes in the GOP primary because of "Dominion voting machines".

Votes in a New Mexico community are at risk of not counting after a Republican-led commission refused to approve primary election results over distrust of Dominion vote-tallying machines.

Democratic Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver on Tuesday asked the state Supreme Court to order the three-member Otero County commission to certify June 7 primary election results to ensure voters are not disenfranchised and that political candidates have access to the general election ballot in November.

On Monday, the commission in its role as a county canvassing board voted unanimously against certifying the results of the primary without raising specific concerns about discrepancies, over the objection of the county clerk.

“I have huge concerns with these voting machines,” said Otero County Commissioner Vickie Marquardt on Monday. “When I certify stuff that I don’t know is right, I feel like I’m being dishonest because in my heart I don’t know if it is right.”

Dominion’s systems have been unjustifiably attacked since the 2020 election by people who embraced the false belief that the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump. The company has filed defamation lawsuits in response to incorrect and outrageous claims made by high-profile Trump allies.

New Mexico’s Dominion machines have been disparaged repeatedly by David and Erin Clements of Las Cruces in their review of the 2020 election in Otero County and voter registration rolls at the request of the commission. The Clements are traveling advocates for “forensic” reviews of the 2020 election and offer their services as election experts and auditors to local governments. Election officials including County Clerk Robyn Holmes say the Clements are not certified auditors nor experts in election protocols.

The couple has highlighted problems during sporadic, hourslong presentations to the commission this year. Local election officials dispute many of the findings as mistaken or unfounded.

Members of the Otero County commission include Cowboys for Trump co-founder Couy Griffin, who ascribes to unsubstantiated claims that Trump won the 2020 election. Griffin was convicted of illegally entering restricted U.S. Capitol grounds — though not the building — amid the riots on Jan. 6, 2021, and is scheduled for sentencing later this month. He acknowledged that the standoff over this primary could delay the outcome of local election races.

County canvassing boards have until June 17 to certify election results, prior to state certification and preparation of general election ballots.

Under state law, county canvass boards can call on a voting precinct board to address specific discrepancies, but no discrepancies were identified on Monday by the Otero commission.

“The post-election canvassing process is a key component of how we maintain our high levels of election integrity in New Mexico and the Otero County Commission is flaunting that process by appeasing unfounded conspiracy theories and potentially nullifying the votes of every Otero County voter who participated in the primary,” Toulouse Oliver said in a statement. She accused the commission of willful violations of the state election code.

New Mexico uses paper ballots that can be double-checked later in all elections, and also relies on tabulation machines to rapidly tally votes while minimizing human error. Election results also are audited by random samplings to verify levels of accuracy in the vote count.

The Otero County commission voted last week to recount ballots from the statewide primary election by hand, remove state-mandated ballot drop boxes that facilitate absentee voting and discontinue the use of Dominion vote tabulation machines in the general election.

On Monday, Holmes said those instructions from the county commissions conflict with state and federal election law, and that she would only recount the election by hand under a court order.

“The election law does not allow me to hand tally these ballots or to even form a board to do it. I just can’t,” said Holmes, a Republican. “And I’m going to follow the law.”

Holmes noted that the state-owned vote tabulation machines from Dominion are tested by Otero County officials in public view and that the machines also are independently certified in advance. Griffin said he and fellow commissioners don’t see the process as trustworthy.

“That’s a source that we don’t have any control or influence over,” he said.

Mario Jimenez of the progressive watchdog group Common Cause New Mexico said the public can view testing of vote-tallying machines prior to elections in every county, and that certification notices are posted on every machine where voters can see them.

“They have no basis — other than ‘we just don’t trust the machine’ — for not certifying the election,” Jimenez said of the Otero County commissioners.


Understand that Republicans will be refusing to certify, or blocking certification, in multiple states in November, and every one of these refusals to certify will be of large, urban counties. Otero County, New Mexico doesn't seem like much, but if Republicans are able to block certification here, other Republicans may do the same in the months ahead.

There's no reasonable basis to refuse to certify, but that's not going to matter in November.  Tossing out millions of Democratic ballots will. Only by voting in numbers so huge that they can't get away with it is the cure.

Related Posts with Thumbnails