Sunday Night Thread

Here are some items that caught my eye this evening:
  • Women make up only 23% of elected officials in state legislatures, but women make up 30% of elected Democrats in state legislatures. All policy positions aside, that fact alone should explain why there is a gender gap in the electorate. The Democratic Party is more favorable to women not only in terms of policy, but also in the manner of its operation.

  • In the still undecided Pennsylvania House, look for a preliminary result in the last outstanding election tomorrow. If the provisional votes are counted in that election, it seems likely that Democrats will win the Pennsylvania House. Expect this one to go all the way to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

    Unless I am mistaken, in Pennsylvania, you only need the House and the Governor in order to redraw electoral maps. It would not be hard to draw new maps that would make Democratic pickups in PA-04, PA-07 and PA-08 more so less permanent, and that would make PA-06 and PA-15 much more inviting targets. In other words, a lot hinges on the outcome of this one state legislature race in Chester County. I do not think it is difficult to argue that it is more important than any of the recounts taking place for U.S. House of Representatives seat.

  • According to a new study, paid political advertising is about all of the election coverage people get these days:Television viewers in crucial Midwest states got more political information in the weeks leading up to the midterm elections from campaign advertisements than from news coverage, according to a new study.

    In the seven markets studied, newscasts aired almost 4 1/2 minutes of paid political ads during a 30-minute broadcast, while only offering 1 minute 43 seconds of election news coverage. News organizations are supposed to cover stories that factor into the public interest, aren't they? Maybe I'm just an overly dedicated citizen, but I would image that elections are in the public interest. In my mind, there is only one way to deal with this irresponsible lapse in political coverage by news organizations: convene a blogger ethics panel.

  • Mystery Pollster looks at the aftermath of generic poll polls versus the actual House popular vote.

  • Meta-note: Don't expect me to back at full blogging strength until around mid-Tuesday. I am traveling back to Philadelphia tomorrow, for one thing. However, the real reason is that blogging, especially at the high standards MyDD has established, is actually very hard. While juicy news stoires or poll numbers can provide good quicker hitters for the front-page, most good articles with original content take a few hours of prep time. This includes extensive news and blogosphere surfing, thinking up new ideas, researching and outlining the idea, and then actually writing the post. (Given my high number of typos, you might notice that I rush through the editing portion of this process). The piece I wrote this morning on the netroots and 2008, for example, took about five hours of prep time before it was ready to post. Usually, a full day of blogging includes not only posting three or four articles, including at least one entirely original piece, but also preparing articles for the following day. Thus, when I go on vacation, it takes some time to get over the vacation and back into the full blogging cycle. That is why I am currently posting a round-up thread instead of a full original piece
Anyway, this is a Sunday night open thread. How was your Thanksgiving?

Tags: Adwatch, Blogosphere, gender, Media, meta, Open Threads, Pennsylvania House, polls, Redistricting (all tags)



Re: Sunday Night Thread vie/

Cool link for downloading Youtube videos.

by Bob Brigham 2006-11-26 04:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Sunday Night Thread

While we're at it, I wonder if we could make PA-10 a bit more Democratic to secure Chris Carney's longevity...

by HellofaSandwich 2006-11-26 06:32PM | 0 recs
I agree.
   Chris Carney is not going to make it past 2008 in that really Republican district.  He only won 53-47 against the Scranton Strangle.  He needs some of the many Democrats from Paul Kanjorski's district.  If only there was some way to put Dent in PA-10 and Carney in PA-15...
   It would be relatively easy to protect Sestak and Murphy, and finally take out Gerlach in PA-06 with some Democrats from Philadelphia (PA-01 and PA-02).  I don't see how we can keep Carney and kick Dent out at the same time.  For the short term in might work, but in the long term it will not.
    Out west.  There are plenty of Democrats in Pittsburgh to shore up Altmire in PA-04.  Republican Phil English in PA-03 performed very poorly this cycle - only 54% of the vote.  I think he could also be made history.  I think the limit of Democratic strength makes PA 13-5 in favor of Democrats, and that is definitely pushing it.  That said, I doubt that Democrats in the PA house will do mid-decade redistricting with such a slim majority.
by cilerder86 2006-11-26 07:50PM | 0 recs
video links please!

Hey guys, some of us don't have cable so we don't have access to C-SPAN.  And we can not get enough of your analysis and debates. I recommend that you provide updates and links so that we can view your C-SPAN or MSM appearances. Thanks!

by jncamane 2006-11-26 08:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Sunday Night Thread

Do whatever you want, Chris, you are a national treasure.

by Ethelred 2006-11-26 08:37PM | 0 recs
"Public Interest"?? Har Har!!

It's been 25 years since the Reaganauts managed to equate "the public interest" with "whatever people choose to watch."  

A quick history:

The Telecommunications Act of 1934 said that, because broadcast frequencies were a scarce resource, that licensees would in effect be speaking for all of us, and they would have to serve "the public interest, convenience, and necessity."

And this was expressed further in ways such as the Fairness Doctrine, which decreed that if a broadcaster gave time to a speaker on one side of an issue, persons on the other side could demand equal time.

In 1981, Ronald Reagan put Mark Fowler, a corporate pawn if there ever was one, in charge of the FCC.  Fowler decided that, with the advent of cable, and the continuing presence of newspapers and whatnot, people could choose to get their news  and entertainment from a wide range of sources - and whichever one they chose to watch, that was serving their interest.  So competition among news media would ensure that the public interest was served, and whatever it provided would, by definition, serve the public interest.

That's pretty much where we are now, along with (a) the removal of the Fairness Doctrine later in the Reagan years (with the WaPo cheering it on even then), and (b) the consolidation of ownership of broadcast and cable media into a small corporate clique that isn't exactly competing very hard to provide much news to the American people.

The Dems could do far worse than to try to resurrect the Fairness Doctrine sometime during this Congress.  It won't be as important in the long run as Net Neutrality, but it's still important now, since so many people still get their news from TV.

by RT 2006-11-27 01:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Sunday Night Thread

Hmm, how likely is it that PA Dems will redraw the lines favorably to them?

I have yet to hear of any pro-D redistricting.

by MNPundit 2006-11-27 03:31AM | 0 recs
Redistricting won't happen because...

It takes both houses of the legislature to redistrict the congressional seats in Pennsylvania. Indeed, the first named defendant in Pennsylvania's redistricting case (Vieth v. Jubelirer) was Robert Jubelirer, then President of the State Senate.

by bschak 2006-11-27 05:54AM | 0 recs
My working assumption is...

...I do not know enough about the redistricting laws applicable to any state to be able to talk about them!

From past experience when I've got it wrong.

Hopefully, when we start to get near the 2010 Census redistricting, the lefty sphere will get some mechanism whereby redistricting expertise can be shared, and out-of-staters' misconceptions put right.

(In fact, 2007 is not too early to start planning for what will inevitably be one of the most complex exercises in political process since the lefty sphere got going.)

by skeptic06 2006-11-27 06:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Sunday Night Thread
re:  women in state legislatures,
i wouldn't suggest the Democratic Party start bragging about the 30% vs. 23%.  my first reaction wasn't "wow, 7% better than the average", but "good god, that is pathetic."   yeah, complicated situation, lots of historical factors, blah blah blah, and i know you were trying to make the point that the gender gap in voting is likely helped by the gap in candidates.  but the numbers are still pathetic.  
by chiefscribe 2006-11-27 09:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Sunday Night Thread

I spent a lot of time (including all of election day) working on the PA-156th raise.  My group, the Chester County Young Democrats, made this our top priority.  I'm glad we did.

However, this may be the most nerve-racking experience I've ever been through in politics.  For any of you familiar with Chester County, we've been Republican since they founded the party.  We've only gone for four Democrats in a Presidential election (Jackson & Johnson in their landslides, Wilson because the base split and Buchanan because he was from 10 minutes away) and prior to May, we hadn't sent a Democrat to the State Legislature since 1892.  

However, we twice went for Rendell (65% this year), went for Casey (55%), almost went for Kerry, took over a lot of local offices, sent Andy Dinniman to the State Senate and Joe Sestak (even though we're the minority county in his district) to Congress.  So, we're changing.

The problem is, the county infrastructure is still mostly Republican.  And the County Commissioners are 2 to 1 Republican.  I'm not the kind of person who cries "stolen election" a lot, but this race is ripe for it, and there'd be little we can do.

Anyway, our candidate, Barb McIlvaine Smith, really is one of the good people in politics and someone everyone in PA would be proud to have in the legislature.  

The moral of this story is that you have to start at the bottom.  While it may not be as sexy to work on County Commissioner races and row offices and State House races, this is where we make the difference.  

I'm still confident we'll win.

by Chesco Dem 2006-11-27 10:12AM | 0 recs


Advertise Blogads