Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Executive Director Guy Cecil released the following statement regarding news that Republican Senator Olympia Snowe would not seek reelection:
“As we said from day one, unexpected opportunities will emerge and the DSCC will be in a position to seize on these opportunities.
“Maine is now a top pick up opportunity for Senate Democrats. If there is one place in the country that is likely to reject the extreme, anti-middle class, divisive Republican agenda it is Maine. Democrats not only hold a strong registration advantage in the state, but this is a state that the President won by 17 points in 2008 and will likely win by a significant margin this year as well.”
Oh those Wacky Wepublicans...stymied by technology. Again. Remember when they claimed John Boy McCain invented the Blackberry? Called the Blackberry a "miracle"? Well, the Blackberry wasn't a miracle, John boy didn't invent it, and who uses them anymore anyway?
We all do use email. You know email, with all the easy ways to develop spam filters to avoid the mail you don't want...and ways to create lists of people you do want to hear from. Well, the Maine GOP didn't count a bunch of caucus returns because, wait for it....they went into their spam folder. I'm not joking. H/T Scott for letting me know this...I would have hated to miss it.
They'll be announcing new results in March. Likely including the caucus results from those that will be held tomorrow.
Remember, though, it's all about the delegates, and the Paul folks might well come out ahead on that. Some thoughts:
In the Minnesota caucuses, for instance, Paul won 27 percent of the presidential preference vote, but 75 percent of the delegates chosen to attend the state convention are Paul supporters. In the Colorado caucuses, Paul got only 12 percent of the vote, but 50 percent of the state delegates are Paul supporters.
Delegate counts on the GOP side are so fluid...look at New Hampshire. And last week's beauty contests? No telling until there are state and county conventions.
I'm telling you, these guys ought to consider things like databases, spreadsheets, or at least pieces of paper on which are tally sheets that they hold on to. Thankfully, they're not in charge of the actual voting.
Pressure is on the Maine Republican Party to reconsider its weekend declaration that Mitt Romney won the state’s caucuses.
The Maine GOP announced Saturday that Romney narrowly edged Ron Paul, 39 percent to 36 percent, in a nonbinding presidential preference poll taken during the caucuses. The margin was fewer than 200 votes.
A number of communities were not included in that poll because they had not held their caucuses in time. Washington County Republicans postponed their caucuses, originally scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 11, because of a pending snowstorm and will now meet this Saturday. Other communities across the states also have caucuses scheduled for this weekend and later this month.
All along, state GOP officials said communities knew that their votes would not be included in the final results if they did not hold their caucus by Feb. 11.
However, a review of the town-by-town results released Saturday by the Maine GOP suggests that some communities that had caucused prior to Feb. 11 were not counted. Nearly all Waldo County towns held caucuses on Feb. 4 but those towns were blank in the results released by the state party. Additionally, Waterville held its caucuses ahead of time but were not included in the results. - Bangor Daily News
With about a week to spare, the Census Bureau completed its statutory obligation to release redistricting data to the states before April 1, 2011. In this post, I am going to cover the "smaller" states -- Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and West Virginia -- leaving Michigan and New York for a separate post.
Maine stayed at two representatives. The target population for each district is 664,000. In Maine, both seats are relatively safe Democratic seats. Currently, the First District covers the central and southwestern coastal region and the Second District covers the remainder of the state. With the current lines, the First District is about 9,000 residents larger than the Second District, but that represents about a 1% deviation from the target. Even with the Tea Party controlling the Governor's mansion in Maine, I would be shocked at any significant changes to the lines.
Massachusetts lost one representative to go down to nine members. After the last election, all ten of the current seats were held by Democrats, though the Tenth barely stayed Democratic in an open election. From a numbers standpoint, there is no obvious seat to save or seat to cut. The gap between the smallest district (the First in western Massachusetts) and the largest district (the Third in east central Massachusetts) is less than 20,000. Even the Third is about 63,000 short of the target populaton of 728,000. As the numbers do not lead to any district that stands out as an obvious cut or an obvious keep, that leaves local politics, geography, and the concerns about keeping all nine seats safe as the factors driving redistricting.
A natural candidate for cutting (when you have ten incumbents of the same party) would be the newest member. That would Bill Keating who won the Tenth in 2010. The Tenth is also the most marginal of the district with Mr. Keating winning by only 4% (and with less than 50%) of the vote. The argument against carving up the Tenth is geographic. The Tenth is in southeastern Massachusetts and only borders two districts. From a geographic standpoint, Geographically, something like the Seventh (the area to the north and west of Boston) would be easier to splice up as it borders four districts). However, Ed Markey is the senior member of the delegation having been around since 1977. What the folks in Boston would like to see is one of the ten volunteer for the task of taking on Scott Brown allowing their district to be carved up and keeping the other nine members of the delgation happy.
They're already voting in Maine. In addition to all Maine residents being able to file absentee ballots, there is a pilot program which allows for on-site early voting in 9 Maine communities. People have been voting since last Monday. The state expects turnout of at least 35%, and Bangor is projecting a turnout in that city of 50-60% based on early ballot requests.
HUGE turnout. HUGE!
Governor Baldacci has held a news conference, along with members of the Vote No coalition, to encourage Mainers to vote not to repeal the legislation. Remember, this is a vote NOT to rescind the legislation making gay marriage legal in Maine.
In the past, I opposed gay marriage while supporting the idea of civil unions," Governor Baldacci said. "I came to believe that this is a question of fairness and of equal protection under the law, and that a civil union is not equal to civil marriage."
"The law guarantees that Maine citizens will be treated equally under Maine's civil marriage laws, and that is the responsibility of government. The law does not force any religion to recognize a marriage that falls outside of its beliefs. It does not require the church to perform any ceremony with which it disagrees. Instead, it reaffirms the separation of Church and State." Governor Baldacci said.
When Susan Collins, Olympia Snowe and then-Republican Arlen Specter voted for the stimulus package, it not only allowed the measure to pass, but bought them all some trouble. Now, US News and World Report writes:
Collins was bombarded with about 100,000 E-mails in the days leading up to the vote: about 13,000 from Mainers, who were split on the issue, and the rest from mostly angry out-of-staters who condemned her "in very personal terms," Collins says. National politics can be as much a contact sport as ice hockey, something Mainers know a thing or two about. But what's curious about the anti-Collins campaign is who she thinks was behind it. Though she won't name him publicly, she blames a fellow GOP senator for unleashing it.
I can't poll this since there are over 50 suspects in the Senate.
So, please use the comments to say who you think convinced over 85,000 non-constituents to try and get Senator Collins to change her vote.