Thursday, December 4, 2014

The white democrats are even vanishing on the federal level in the deep south

We are now two days out from the run-off elections in Louisianna and the latest polls show the republicans are going to defeat 18 year incumbent US Senator Mary Landrieu(D), former Governor Edwin Edwards(D) and another democrat. If those numbers hold there will be a grand total of eight white democrats(6 US HOUSE and 2 US SENATE) left in Congress from the deep south states of Arkansas,Lousianna, Mississippi,Alabama,Georgia, South & North Carolina,Virginia,Kentucky and Tennessee. The good news for the democrats is that they shouldn't have much of a problem holding those seats in 2016. The bad news is, its a far cry from the way it use to be prior to 2000 when democrats controlled over two thirds of the seats in these states in Congress.

Monday, December 1, 2014

The case of the vanishing southern white democrats

Right now in the new Alabama State Legislature there are only 6 white democrats left in both houses. All five in the state house represent districts north of Birmingham. The only female is Patricia Todd who represents a district in downtown Birmingham and is also the only openly gay member in either chamber. The other four are what they call yellow dog democrats. You have Marcel Black from Tuscumbia and Johnny Mack Morrow from Red Bay in the Shoals area. You have Craig Ford from Gadsden and Richard Lindsay from the northeast area of Alabama. The GOP will probably win all four of these seats when those four gentlemen leave. In the Alabama State Senate there's only one white democrat left and thats two term senator Billy Beasley from down in the Montgomery area. He basically is in the same type of situation that Congressman Steve Cohen is in in Memphis. He represents a minority majority district and he benefited in an open race four years ago when a couple of black candidates split the black vote. Since he voted the will of his district over the past four years and provided good constituent service to his district. He was able to sail to re-election this year in a district that is nearly seventy percent black. In Tennessee now, there are only two white democrats left in the State Senate and both of those represent districts in Nashville and Memphis. In all theres only five democrat state senators left in Tennessee now and all five of them represent districts in Nashville and Memphis. In the Tennessee State House, theres only two white democrats left now that represent districts that are west of Nashville. Craig Fitzhugh from Ripley and David Shepherd from Dickson. Mr Shepherd only won by 16 votes last month so thats a seat the GOP will really be after in 2016. You also have a handful of white liberal democrat who represent districts in Nashville. The others are Joe Pitts in Clarksville, John Mark Windle in Livingston and Kevin Dunlap from over on the Cumberland Plateau.  The GOP will probably go hard after those three in 2016 as well. Also it'll be interesting to see how white democrats will fare in Mississippi's state legislative elections eleven months from now. This will be the first election they've had since the GOP passed re-districting bill went into effect.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

I strongly urge a NO vote on Amendment 2 in Tennessee

If you live in Tennessee and you plan on voting over the next two weeks I strongly urge a NO vote on Amendment 2. The ultimate reason why I come down on the side of NO on this is that there are untold amounts of Tennesseans from Dyersburg to Bristol and from Ooltewah to Beale Street who have had their lives shattered by either directly fighting for democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past thirteen years  or having family members or close friends fight over there.  There are people in Tennessee who have lost limbs or given their lives over there and the reason why they went is they wanted to bring democracy to those two countries. But here we have some people in Tennessee who are walking around with their heads held high over the past few weeks looking down on the common man and telling them that they need to give up their right to vote for state judges.  So they can implement a system like we currently have in Washington and we all know how great the system in DC works.  I dont know about any of you but I dont have the right to look a vet in the eye in some place like Linden or Red Bank, Tn who had his limbs blown off in Iraq and tell him he doesnt deserve the right to vote for state judges in his home state and I wonder what makes the Phil Bredesens,Fred Thompsons and Bill Haslams think they have that right.If this amendment passes then you can mark my words they will be back in a few years to try to take away your right to vote for yet another office.  We already had one bill in the legislature last session that wanted to take away your right to vote for the US Senators.  This is very troubling especially during this day and time seeing so many so called leaders in BOTH parties seeking to take away our right to vote for particular offices.  It even happened in my adopted hometown of Cullman, Al. back in the spring when the legislature  took away Cullman Countains right to vote for school superintendent.  What happened in Cullman was even sneakier and more low down. The backers of that measure went to the local Red Elephant Club(thats a fan club for Alabama football fans) and then to the local Auburn club and they got the members of those two clubs to go out into the county and campaign for it. It was enough to give you a stroke watching them convince people to give up their right to vote for School Superintendent and ending each conversation with a Roll Tide or War Eagle. In the simplistic words of my late father "That just ain't right boy" really isn't really isn't.  Thats why I urge all of you in Tennessee to vote NO on amendment 2...lets stop this madness before it gets worse.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Drama,polls and more drama in Alabama politics

I just finished reading Mike Hubbard's book again on how the GOP swept to power in Alabama back in 2010. I highly recommend the book to those of you who havent read it yet. He makes some interesting points in the book. One is how their polling was showing Former Senate Majority Leader Zeb Little(D-Cullman) down by nearly 20 points from the summer of 2010 on. That explains why he went so negative on Paul Bussman right after the run off. The other thing I found interesting is how dirty Lowell Barron played. They suspect he hired strippers from the infamous "Boobie Bungalow" stripclub on I-65 in Ardmore and sent them to Shad McGill's house in the middle of the night and he also had a photographer hiding in the bushes hoping to snap pics of McGill with the strippers. Hubbard also claims Lowell hired someone to drive a car through McGill's business. My friends, Lowell Barron was something else I mean and those stories in Hubbard's book only scratch the surface of what he did over the years. He also talks about how Ken Guin played dirty as well and how the tidal wave started in the spring of 2009 for the GOP and slowly built to a Tsunami by election day in 2010. One ironic footnote...he briefly mentions at thee end how they passed tough ethics reform legislation before Governor Riley left office in December 2010. Its ironic because those same reforms are what Attorney General Luther Strange is trying to get a grand jury in Auburn to indict Hubbard on right now. Its a very interesting book though for the political junkie out there and its available on Amazon. I highly recommend it....

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Update on Tennessee State Senate races

I thought I'd issue an update on my election forecast for the state senate in Tennessee for this fall. Right now its looking like the Republicans will have a 28 to 5 majority in the Tennessee State Senate after the November elections. Im moving that seat thats based on the northern side of I-40 headed out of Nashville going west toward Jackson from the lean GOP category to likely GOP. This was and still is in a way the democrats best shot at picking up a republican held seat.  But Im moving it into the likely GOP column because former State Senator Kerry Roberts won the primary two weeks ago and the incumbent Jim Summerville only received a paltry 15% or so of the vote. Mr Roberts also represented part of this district when he was previously in the Tennessee State Senate so he's already got a decent amount of name id and he's pretty much non-controversial unlike Summerville and his weird diatribes. The democrat challenger in this race is a decent person by all accounts but when the democrats allowed a 78 year old no name farmer named Charlie Brown to win their nomination for Governor this year. That pretty much killed any chance Mr. Gross and the democrats had of winning this seat.  It showed that the democrats in Tennessee are literally in shambles as far as party organization goes and that is a back breaker in state legislative races most of the time. By the way Jim Summerville switched to the Independent Party last week and its pretty telling by the reaction he got. It was basically have a good life sir.  As far as the rest of the state senate races go, pretty much nothing has changed all year. Ed Jackson(R) will in all likelihood win that open state senate seat thats based in the Jackson Tn area and stretches up too Dyersburg.  Also State Rep Paul Bailey(R) will probably win that seat thats based over on the Cumberland Plateau in Putnam County. He will be the first republican to represent that area in the senate in modern history if he does win it. Those three seats in the state senate are the only ones worth watching this fall because their basically the only ones that have any chance of being competitive. Ill be out with an updated forecast on the Tennessee State House later and in a few weeks Ill issue an updated forecast for the state legislative elections in Alabama this fall. That senate seat thats held by Senator Harri Anne Smith(D/I) down in wiregrass country near Dothan  is very close from what Im hearing so far in internal polling....

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Can TJ Barker benefit from Joe Carr's expected success in Hardin County, Tn.

Its expected by a lot of observers that Joe Carr is going to do extremely well in rural counties across Tennessee in twelve days thanks mainly to anger among grassroots Tea Party type people and one of those counties he's expected to carry if he wins is the Hardin/Savannah, Tn area. There are a lot of angry grassroots conservative republicans in Tennessee and their mad at Lamar Alexander for a variety of reasons ranging from him working with Obama to the fact that he's been around for it seems like forever. So your probably wondering well what does this have to do with TJ Barker's campaign for Hardin County, Tn. Sheriff against incumbent Sammy Davidson. Well here's why their linked....if the grassroots conservative Tea Party crowd comes out in force in twelve days as expected to try and take down Lamar at the ballot box. Then whose to say that those people will be so mad that they won't continue down the ballot after the US Senate race voting against all the incumbents especially the longtimers like Sheriff Sammy Davidson who has been around elected office for about as long as Lamar has? Just something to consider as the August 7 primary draws closer....

Monday, July 14, 2014

The latest poll in the GOP primary for US Senate in Tennessee has Lamar up by a 43 to 36 over Joe Carr and George Flinn comes in third with 7%. Folks, its going to be a doozy down the stretch here in the final 3 plus weeks....

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Can a Carr beat Lamar!?

I'll give State Rep. Joe Carr(R-Lascasses) credit, he's been running rings around Lamar Alexander on social media circuits over the last few weeks in their race for US Senator from Tennessee. But can he defeat him on election day in four weeks? That is the million dollar question. I think Carr will do extremely well in a lot of the rural counties where mainly tea partiers are in control. The big questions are how well will he do in the suburban counties around Memphis, Nashville,Knoxville and those areas in East Tennessee that have a tendency to elect moderate Kent Williams types of Republicans. I think its a foregone conclusion that because of George Flinn being in this race that the Memphis/Shelby County area is a lost cause for Carr at this point. As is Nashville and Knoxville where a lot of the rich moderate republicans  live who love and admire the type of republicanism that Lamar represents. So those areas are lost causes as well. But the good news for Joe Carr is that as we've seen with President Obama, you can win those areas by wide margins but still get creamed statewide in Tennessee. The good news for Carr also extends to his home area/GOP stronghold of Murfreesboro, Tn where there will be a huge turnout on election day thanks to heated races for Sheriff and Congress in that area. The questions I have though is how well will he do in Williamson County next door to Murfreesboro and how well will he do in Fayette and Madison Counties over in west Tennessee? Also how well will he play in rural east Tennessee which has a tendency to elect moderates? I think Carr will probably do reasonably well in these areas that I mentioned because the tea partiers are more motivated to vote than Lamar's grassroots supporters are. But will Carr's margins be big enough in the rural areas to offset Lamar's edge in Knoxville,Nashville and Memphis. That is the million dollar question that we'll find out the answer too on August 7.....

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

What can I say other than, I was wrong....

By all the polling over the last week and the general rule of thumb that incumbents(especially the elderly and one who has a mistress on the side while his wife is dieing from dementia) who are drawn into runoffs more often than not lose because their supporters arent as motivated to turn out the vote as the challengers are. It sure looked like Chris McDaniel was headed for a gigantic upset of US Senator Thad Cochran(R) yesterday but everyone(including myself) were wrong. When you look at the numbers you find that more people actually voted in the runoff than they did in the primary. That is almost unheard of in todays campaigns. You also have to hand it to Cochran's campaign team, they saw a loophole in the Mississippi law where democrats could vote in the runoff and they took advantage of it in a big way and it probably saved them from certain defeat. McDaniel's supporters are crying foul over the high turnout in black neighborhoods for Cochran  that usually vote heavily democrat but it was all perfectly legal so in the words of Frank Corder from last night...they should just suck on it. Speaking of Mr Corder and the rest of his friends in Tupelo and the want to talk about sore winners. To be such "great self proclaimed christians" they sure put on a show last night on TV and twitter. They might want to ask their friend in Baldwyn,  Mr Aldridge what bragging about how great of a christian they are gets you. But back to the Senate where do we go from here. Well Thad Cochran will cruise to victory over Travis Childers(D-Booneville) in November. My guess is he'll serve about another two or three years and then resign and let Governor Bryant appoint Haley Barbour or Tate Reeves to the US Senate to replace him. As far as Chris McDaniel goes....well lets be honest theres no way in the world Governor Bryant will appoint him to the US Senate after all thats happened. He will continue to serve in the State Senate and who knows if Jim Hood runs for Governor next year as most believe he will, then dont be surprised if McDaniel doesnt jump into that race. As far as the Tea Party and their supporters go this morning....I know there are a lot of hurt and disappointed people this morning and rightfully so but we can all take some solace in the fact that what last night and the defeat of Eric Cantor two weeks ago proved is that you really never know for sure whats going to happen in an election and that is ultimately a good thing because it puts a scare into everyone in politics from the challengers to most importantly the incumbents.....

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Update on runoff in Mississippi's US Senate race just 3 days out now

Chism Strategies in Jackson has a poll out tonight showing Chris McDaniel up by 8 pts(52 to 44%) over US Senator Thad Cochran(R) with just three days left until the primary. This will be huge news if it holds....

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Roundup of last weeks elections in Nick Saban country

Alabamians seem to be happy with most of their politicians judging from last weeks primaries in the land of the "lord and savior Nick Saban". State Rep Jim McClendon defeated State Sen Jerry Fielding in the GOP primary for that senate seat thats based in the Talladega area. Fielding switched to the GOP in 2012 and its always hard to win over voters who four years ago voted against you in mass. So that result wasnt even all that shocking to see. State Rep Mac Buttram in Cullman was forced into a runoff against Good Hope Mayor Corey Harbinson in the GOP primary on July 15. This race will be interesting to watch in the coming weeks because both candidates are well liked. Buttram is a Methodist minister and Harbinson is one of the youngest Mayors in the country and one look at Good Hope shows that hes done a great job during his reign as mayor. Harbinson probably starts out in the runoff as the favorite but it won't shock me either if Buttram wins. The Sheriffs race in Cullman did surprise me a little bit with first term Sheriff Mike Blakely(R) being forced into a runoff next month  against a little known Drug Task Force Agent who ran on a shoestring budget. Thats probably not good news for Blakely in next months runoff. Over in northeast Alabama for the senate seat that was held by longtime and very controversial senator Lowell Barron. Steve Livingston knocked off moderate State Rep Todd Greeson in the GOP primary so he's in all likelihood headed to the State Senate in January. The Mike Millican vs James Bonner race kind of surprised me with Millican winning that Hamilton based seat. As we look toward the fall unless something shocking happens the GOP will win every statewide office in Alabama this fall. Some of the races to keep an eye on in north Alabama this fall will be that senate seat thats vacant in the western part of Lauderdale County/Florence thats been held by democrats since the civil war. The GOP believes this will finally be the year they will capture that seat. Also the Sheriff's race in Colbert,Lauderdale and Limestone will be close as well. The GOP would give their spleens if they can capture those seats this fall. The seats in Lauderdale and Colbert are both open but the one in Limestone has been represented by Mike Blakely since 1982. But Limestone is drifting more and more to the right so its expected that the GOP nominee in that race will come very close to Sheriff Blakely this fall as they drift toward November. Also last weeks results in the Lauderdale/Florence area show that for the first time since the civil war more republicans voted in the GOP primary than Democrats voted in their primary. So thats a very good sign for the Lauderdale County/Florence GOP and their chances this November....

Thoughts on the US Senate GOP primary in Mississippi

Last week State Senator Chris McDaniel finished ahead of longtime US Senator Thad Cochran by about thirteen hundred votes in the GOP primary in Mississippi. As I predicted last fall on my Facebook page you could almost feel this coming. A young upstart State Senator riding the Tea Party and social media wave in a very conservative state against a longtime old school US Senator who only campaigns on how much pork he can bring to Mississippi. But as I pointed out last fall, in northeast Mississippi its very hard to see what Cochran's seniority has done for that area of the state. Unemployment is high compared with the northwest and coastal parts of the state and the roads are in horrific condition so what valid reason do voters in places like Baldwyn,Iuka,Fulton and Corinth have to come out again on June 24 and save Thad Cochran from what likes a certain defeat? His campaign also overplayed their hand on what happened with four of McDaniel's supporters taking pictures of his bedridden wife laying in a nursing home. They made that poor 25 year old blogger that got arrested out to look worse than that guy in Tupelo who sent ricin to President Obama. That enabled McDaniel's supporters to leak those pictures of Cochran showing up at parties in Washington with a lady from Baltimore thats in her late 50's to the media in Mississippi. The runoff for this race is June 24 and unless something shocking happens, I fully expect McDaniel to finish off Cochran that day. Chism Strategies released a poll Saturday showing McDaniel up by a 50 to 47 margin over Cochran. That margin will probably end up being 54 to 46 or 55 to 45 on June 24. Also it was interesting to look at all the bitter looks on the faces of GOPers like Lt Governor Tate Reeves and Secretary of State Delbert Hoseman after last weeks election. Make no mistake about it they would've run this year for that seat if Cochran had retired but they were too afraid to challenge him when push came to shove. One more note on Mississippi politics, Congressman Alan Nunnelee who represents the Tupelo area is scheduled to have a "mass" removed from his brain Monday morning in Houston. Nunnelee has been through a lot in his life with the blindness he suffered from and other issues so lord willing he'll be ok after his surgery!