Um, comparing Martin and Chambliss across a wide variety of issues (universal health care, energy, social issues), I support Martin. It is extremely rare in Georgia for a state-wide politician to ran as a liberal nowadays.
Thus, I'm willing to let him demagogue Saxby a little bit in order to get the final couple of percent he needs to win. Also, now that we've gone from the need to fix the bailout to the need to implement all the promised regulatory reform, Jim Martin is your man.
The perfect play now for the Dems in question is to announce loudly and proudly just how horribly afraid their Republican opponents are of looking like Republicans. They are afraid to be anywhere near the Bush-McCain action.
Something along the lines of "Sen. so-and-so is afraid to be seen embracing the Bush-McCain failures of the past eight years. Unfortunately, we have far too many examples of their adherence to Bush rather than the American people." List of unpopular Republican legislation follows.
Work can speak for itself, it's true. However, as above, I also go to Georgia Tech, as does my girlfriend.
I'd say another major problem I've seen is that we are competition-focused. Stereotypically, boys are more willing / eager to compete (especially at the age of undergrads), whereas girls shy away. Also, the guys I know are more likely to overstate their competence (myself include) while girls are more likely to understate their competence.
There are actually several situations where I'd prefer the female mindset (project scheduling immediately comes to mind) in terms of expressing confidence or knowledge of a given aspect.
However, in a competitive environment, preferring competition and being able to make yourself look better than you are still helps. Even when the subject matter "speaks for itself," it can still often be obscured. It takes time to check things out, and so appearances are often taken for granted.
Yes - but how awesome is this? We actually have a Republican on tape claiming that Barack reached out to him for bipartisan work. All this "most liberal Senator" crap just cut undercut by its own side.
Man, the GOP just does not have its game plan together this time ...
If Obama does pursue something not unlike McCain after TWO elections in which the American public thought they were giving a very clear message to Democrats that they should end this occupation, then it is going to be quite detrimental to the Democratic party. Further, it will cause Obama to disabuse a new group of young voters of the notion that politics actually matters. Hopefully, he sees who his future re-election campaign will rely upon.
Also, there is one thing that has not yet changed on the ground, the elephant in the room that no one really wants to acknowledge.
Our current troop strength is such that any of our objectives continue to be at the mercy of the mood of the Iraqi people. If they finally decide they cannot reconcile with each other, or have decided en masse that they do not want us there, there is not much we can do about it.
We either have to decide that we want to rebuild Iraq and bend its political landscape to our will (which will require numbers closer to the 300,000-500,000 troop numbers estimated before this all started and a huge increase in funds poured in), or that the Iraqis really have the place to themselves, and that we should be out of their way.
That's the situation that Obama needs to outline. We may be guiding things over there, but the tiller that we have our hands on is an unreliable one at best.
I also find it incredibly amazing how much the Republicans want to reconstruct Iraq when they are amazingly unwilling to do it here.
Defunding the war would have used the only power Congress still seems to have in regulating how war is done (which was originally a power that they had almost entirely). It was a good move, since most formulations contained about six months of logistic funding to complete the leaving of the country.
A lot of the improvement we have seen is also due to political actions taken by al-Sadr and the bringing in of the Sunni Awakening. Paetreus gets props for his work in achieving some of this (what little I've glimpsed of his manual does seem to make quite a bit of sense in a nuts-and-bolts kind of way).
However, what he is also demonstrating is that the Iraqis are gaining the ability and interest in holding their country together. Maybe not exactly as we want, but oh well. Also, the machinations of the Iraqi parliament are demonstrating that permanent aid is not really desired.
I'd personally like a lot of these guys thrown out of the public conversation. Mega-church pastors seem to be quite good at drawing a crowd, but also a little on the kooky side.
Unfortunately, this is a country where politics still centers around the church, so you have to hold your nose and pick the one that does the most good on balance.
Meanwhile, when do we get to start talking about Hillary's connections to the Family, that delightful right-wing Bible camp that really wants to screw up DC. I'm frankly amazed that we've heard so little about her hanging around End-Timers and those that would put all of us rational thinkers in camps when they get the chance.