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Thread: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

  1. #1

    Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    WASHINGTON (AP) A surly electorate that holds Congress in even lower regard than unpopular President Barack Obama is willing to "keep the bums in," with at least 365 incumbents in the 435-member House and 18 of 28 senators on a glide path to another term when ballots are counted Nov. 4.

    With less than 10 weeks to the elections, Republicans and Democrats who assess this fall's midterm contests say the power of incumbency the decennial process of reconfiguring congressional maps and hefty fundraising trumps the sour public mood and antipathy toward gridlocked Washington.

    "Despite the incredibly low polling, favorable ratings for Congress, it's still an incumbent's world," said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics that tracks political money.

    That leaves many voters angry, not only with the political reality but their inability to change it.

    "I can't get over where they say people are going to be able to keep their seats when they're not doing their jobs. I just don't understand it," said retired teacher Pauline Legendre after voting in Minnesota's Democratic primary last month.

    The voter disgust is palpable, evident in blistering comments at summertime town halls and middling percentages for incumbents in primaries. Yet no sitting senator has lost and only three congressmen got the primary boot. Come Election Day, only a fraction of the electorate will be motivated enough to vote if history is any guide.


    http://news.yahoo.com/surly-2014-ele...-election.html

  2. #2

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Gerrymandering + Citizens United ='s very little chance of unseating an incumbent.

    Thanks GOP and CONSERVATIVE SCOTUS - you get credit for both.

  3. #3

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    When it comes to Congress, people never think their Representative or Senator is a problem. They never stop to think about how they may actually be simply voting for John Boehner, Harry Reid, or Nancy Pelosi. This is especially true in the Senate.

  4. #4

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    C'mon. It's not about thinking. It's about lack of competition in many districts or money drowning out opposition candidates whether in the primary or general election.

    But Republicans like lack of competition and as much money flowing to incumbents as possible.

    You guys built it - so own it.

  5. #5

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.

  6. #6

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.

  7. #7

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by wordjazz
    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.
    Which proves nothing, by the way. The fact that more Americans live in cities than ever before, and people living in cities overwhelmingly vote for Democrats, doesn't mean that the vote is distorted.

    We're not a direct democracy, so looking at the total vote count is meaningless.

  8. #8

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by wordjazz
    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.

    Trad, Dems would be just fine with drawing 50-50 (or relatively close to 50-50) districts and letting competition win out.

    Conservatives know that truly competitive districts mean dark days for them - so they would rather eat glass then agree to a system which gives a big advantage to moderates.

    So don't try hiding behind "Dems do it too" - because we all know conservatives love the hardcore gerrymandered state of affairs. Face it, it's the only way the Tea Party Conservatives can ever hope, no matter how dim, to take over the GOP.

  9. #9

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    [quote=The Tradition]
    Quote Originally Posted by wordjazz
    Quote Originally Posted by "The Tradition":2pyevbbe
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.
    Which proves nothing, by the way. The fact that more Americans live in cities than ever before, and people living in cities overwhelmingly vote for Democrats, doesn't mean that the vote is distorted.

    We're not a direct democracy, so looking at the total vote count is meaningless.[/quote:2pyevbbe]


    There are no 50-50 districts in New York City. There are also no 50-50 districts in Montana.

  10. #10

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Actually Montana has 2 blue Senators and a blue Governor. It is not as red as you believe.

    Yes, NYC would be difficult to create 50-50 districts (like much of Texas). However, we sure could do a lot better than 80-20 districts.

    My point is that all reasonable efforts should be made to balance out districts or make them more balanced. Balance creates competition and competition awards the better candidate and more popular policy positions - instead of the current system which often awards the more extreme candidates.

    And we all know competition means moderation - and political moderation in the mind of a conservative is tantamount to the fast lane to communism.

  11. #11

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn Nole
    Actually Montana has 2 blue Senators and a blue Governor. It is not as red as you believe.

    Yes, NYC would be difficult to create 50-50 districts (like much of Texas). However, we sure could do a lot better than 80-20 districts.

    My point is that all reasonable efforts should be made to balance out districts or make them more balanced. Balance creates competition and competition awards the better candidate and more popular policy positions - instead of the current system which often awards the more extreme candidates.

    And we all know competition means moderation - and political moderation in the mind of a conservative is tantamount to the fast lane to communism.

    I'm all for compact and realistic districts. A district should reflect the citizens of said district, and compact enough for citizens to reasonably travel to their representative's office to seek help and services.

    I'm not for doing all sorts of contortions to make districts politically "balanced".

  12. #12

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    I agree Trad. I don't like twisting and shaping districts into a crazy meandering mess. That does not mean that certain tweaks and reasonable adjustments cannot be made that are logical and increase competition within and between the 2 major parties.

  13. #13

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    I really think districts should be purely determined by census counts and there should be no evidence of party affiliation (or any other parameter such as race) in the drawing process.

    I also believe that parties should not be part of elections beyond a candidate recognizing themselves as such and such party.

    All races should be completely open. If a candidate gets more than 50% of the vote he wins the seat. If he doesn't then the top two should be in a final election. If it is two democrats so be it.... two republicans, fine... whatever...

    Party should not be part of the government sponsored process.

  14. #14

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Not sure what the connection is between census counts and drawing district lines.

    How does that work?

  15. #15

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by Brooklyn Nole
    Gerrymandering + Citizens United ='s very little chance of unseating an incumbent.

    Thanks GOP and CONSERVATIVE SCOTUS - you get credit for both.
    Hard to to argue with this. Fact is that money talks in politics. And Citizens Untied basically ushered in an era of unlimited spending for elections. So if you're an incumbent with heavy financial support in a heavily gerrymandered district, you know the other side doesn't have a chance. All you really have to worry about is surviving the primary against your own side.

  16. #16

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Quote Originally Posted by wordjazz
    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.
    This fact alone should make both sides cringe.

  17. #17

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    [quote=The Tradition]
    Quote Originally Posted by wordjazz
    Quote Originally Posted by "The Tradition":3rxrfi13
    Yeah, Democrats NEVER gerrymander their districts or allow siphons of money into the races from rich guys or organizations.
    Of course they have, which is why we should enact reforms to keep any party from distorting election results as badly as they are now. The party that lost in total vote counts in the House enjoys a +30 seat majority.
    Which proves nothing, by the way. The fact that more Americans live in cities than ever before, and people living in cities overwhelmingly vote for Democrats, doesn't mean that the vote is distorted.

    We're not a direct democracy, so looking at the total vote count is meaningless.[/quote:3rxrfi13]

    Of course the vote was distorted. The GOP already admitted it has. Shortly after the last election, the GOP came out with a memo bragging that their success was largely due to gerrymandering.

  18. #18

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    [quote=The Tradition]
    Quote Originally Posted by "Brooklyn Nole":1h42mk0v
    Actually Montana has 2 blue Senators and a blue Governor. It is not as red as you believe.

    Yes, NYC would be difficult to create 50-50 districts (like much of Texas). However, we sure could do a lot better than 80-20 districts.

    My point is that all reasonable efforts should be made to balance out districts or make them more balanced. Balance creates competition and competition awards the better candidate and more popular policy positions - instead of the current system which often awards the more extreme candidates.

    And we all know competition means moderation - and political moderation in the mind of a conservative is tantamount to the fast lane to communism.

    I'm all for compact and realistic districts. A district should reflect the citizens of said district, and compact enough for citizens to reasonably travel to their representative's office to seek help and services.

    I'm not for doing all sorts of contortions to make districts politically "balanced".[/quote:1h42mk0v]

    I find it odd that you use the term "contortions" for making districts more fair given the fact that is was extreme contorting which made the districts absurdly drawn up in the first place.

  19. #19

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Incumbents have always had an advantage. As far as gerrymandering goes, I think that's overrated. Take NC for instance. Until 2010, for over 110 years, NC had a Democrat controlled state legislature. How could a Republican ever get elected to the House during that time? Same for NY or any northeastern state today.

  20. #20

    Re: Electorate poised to "keep the bums in" Congress

    Huey, the House of Representatives is not supposed to be a reflection the total population partisan divide. It is supposed to represent individual districts. Since liberals tend to mass together in cities, their votes are immediately diluted because the effect is to have many more districts in conservative-leaning areas (flyover country). If you want to fix this, I'd suggest you move to a rural part of Texas (but not Austin, else, your liberal votes will just be added to the rest of the crazy crew in that town).

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