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A Democratic Cakewalk.

Written By: - Date published: 12:52 pm, November 5th, 2018 - 48 comments
Categories: elections, International, internet, journalism, Left, liberalism, Media, political parties, Politics, us politics - Tags: , , , ,

The US mid term elections are about to take place. All of the seats in the House of Representatives are up for grabs and 1/3rd of the seats in the Senate (mostly Democrat ones) are also being put to the vote.

Cenk Uygur has offered some possibly insightful commentary on the state of play. You can listen/watch his full breakdown in the video. Mainstream news outlets are suggesting that The Democratic Party will probably win just enough votes to take the House (around the bare minimum of 24 gains) and may squeak the Senate. Cenk is picking a gain of between 38 and 50 seats for the Democrats in the House.

And what he’s saying makes sense once you allow for the blind spot that afflicts mainstream media (and polling methods) when it comes to figuring the likely impact of Progressive candidates/policies.

If Cenk is right (and I don’t think he’s wrong), then in a few days time pundits will be scratching their heads yet again, trying to figure why respected polling was so wrong while they celebrate a Democratic wave that they didn’t see coming. But here’s a thing…

When they celebrate a Democratic wave, they’ll likely be missing the point that it has happened in spite of the established Democratic Party, and because of the Progressive candidates (and not so progressive but populist candidates like Richard Ojeda) whose prospects they themselves keep underplaying and dismissing in their commentary.

I suspect there will be some interesting and fraught commentary around US politics in coming weeks and months…which is another upcoming dynamic that Cenk Uygur has picked.

Assuming a Democratic wave in the House (and it is just an assumption being made for the sake of argument at this point), then…well as Cenk Uygur again, this time as a guest the National Press Club in Washington “laying it on the line” for his fellow journalists says – there’s going to be “a war” between old media and new media.

 

For my part, I’d view what Cenk is referring to in terms of what has happened in the UK, where old media continues to fight a rearguard action against the politics and popularity of UK Labour being led by Corbyn and new media in the UK like The Canary routinely calling out old media and the centrist politics and strategies it promotes.

In NZ, I don’t think we have a population base that would support any substantive new media. So what NZ has is a lop sided media landscape that people seem to be generally turning away from. Who watches the TV news these days? Newspaper readership is going down. But apart from blogs, there is little or no opportunity to create an Intercept, or a Young Turks or a Canary for countervailing views to be expressed here.

That as it may be, the world is changing. There are powerful vested or institutional interests that will serve to protect or promote the status quo because “their interests” (it’s not a conspiracy) and ever growing numbers of people who are done with it. It’s not sustainable.

And as the centre collapses we get both good and bad alternatives thrown up. Sadly, it would seem that those gathered around the status quo are locked into a pattern whereby they help promote bad options by presenting them as a fearful spectre that people should run from – but people vote for them anyway – while dismissing or squelching alternatives coming in from a left or progressive perspective.

Interesting times straight ahead.

48 comments on “A Democratic Cakewalk.”

  1. Ian Barnes 1

    So Cenk reckons 38+ swing to the Dems and you think he’s on the right track…

    Hmm- I think Cenk is inhaling hallucinogens. One of my American relatives is a DC political scientist and an optimistic Dem supporter. She thinks about 28.

    I lived in the US for 20 years and got so see the US and its politics up close. Against all the commentary, I predicted Trump would win. I reckon the Dems will take <24 in the House, and that the GOP will hold the Senate. Happy to be proved wrong.

    • SPC 1.1

      538 picked the rust belt states would decide it, however all the polls showed Clinton’s lead holding – then on the day a lot of close narrow wins to Trumpin that area. Just a couple of those going the other way and then …

    • Draco T Bastard 1.2

      Against all the commentary, I predicted Trump would win.

      So?

      Quite a few of us thought he would as well because he was saying things against the status quo. In other words, he was going to get in in populist BS and that’s what happened.

      He, of course, immediately entrenched the power of the rich even more.

      [Really?! A first time commentator making a fairly innocuous comment and you sling unwarranted snide in their direction? You could have made your comment about Trump without the barb. Leave it out please.] – B.

  2. SPC 2

    I see it as a moderate win to the Democrats in the House (the gerrymandering and restrictions on voting prevent anything more than that).

    The important thing is the Governorships and power at state level – to combat gerrymandering and discriminatory voting laws for future elections (given the Supreme Court make-up from now on).

    It looks like the Democrats are going to (albeit narrowly) lose most of the key Senate races.

    The old conservative guard (voted for war in 2003, voted for the Patriot Act/Homeland Security Act, etc etc) and new intake in the House will have to take some time outs to get along at times.

    • Bill 2.1

      I’m less interested in the prediction of what the result will be than I am in the potential repercussions if Cenk Uygur’s election predictions are any where near correct.

      It’s on that front that I think he’s absolutely bang on the money.

      Look at the woeful reactions to Brexit or Trump or whatever, that have blamed results on voter’s stupidity or voter’s racism etc.

      Then, in the case of the US and the 2016 Presidential election, there was instant finger pointing at Russia and allegations of collusion. (That’s bled over into some post result analysis of things like Brexit and the Catalonia vote for independence where changes of “Russian interference” have been made)

      It looks to me like that charge of collusion runs like a particularly fraught fault line between those broadly supportive of the establishment and the status quo in whatever country, and those who might self describe as progressive/left.

      And it makes sense.

      If you are of the persuasion that things are basically okay and just need “the other guys” to win office, then “Russia!” serves as a nice set of self imposed blinkers… no need to look at the disconnect of political policies or systemic and structural defects in our political economy. There’s nothing to be seen. Everything would be okay and “steady as she goes” it wasn’t for Russian interference up to and including at the level of collusion. (That’s what Muellers investigation was meant to be about – establishing that there had been collusion).

      On the other hand, if you’re of the persuasion that things are pretty well shot, then sans concrete evidence, “Russia! ” just comes across as an exercise in particularly stupid that’s infecting the political discourse beyond the borders of the US.

      Anyway, with a large win for the Democrats in a few days time, supporters of the status quo are probably (and against inconvenient evidence to the contrary) going to see it as vindication for their stance and continue to squelch and marginalise left or progressive voices, who will nevertheless continue to be heard through non-traditional outlets (“new media” if you will).

      And that’s when and where everything blows up, as media embracing a need for change, and pushing that need with an eye to the 2020 Presidential elections, runs up against establishment media set on preserving the status quo. And since it will be happening in the US, it’ll probably spill way out beyond the media landscape of the US and wash into more or less every nook and cranny of political discourse throughout (I’d say) the Anglosphere.

      • SPC 2.1.1

        I do not see the size of the win as that important to the dynamic of the old guard/old media (nationwide MSM) and new intake who come up via from grassroots campaigns at the local level. This has always been the case.

        The issue is more what happens to the new intake when on Capitol Hill, and if they do disrupt the status quo can they get re-elected over old guard objection?

        And it’s not a matter of new media rather than “status quo” media pushing a need for change, but of those pushing for change making the news – being effective organisers and proponents of change – so that no media can ignore them.

        • WeTheBleeple 2.1.1.1

          More catastrophising.

        • Bill 2.1.1.2

          but of those pushing for change making the news – being effective organisers and proponents of change – so that no media can ignore them.

          Well, Corbyn wasn’t ignored. But the coverage was and is, how to say, less than positive. And when Sanders wasn’t being ignored he was being written off. And the prospects of progressive candidates are being downplayed and/or their wins treated as novelties by msm.

          As far as I can see, from a very long way away, there’s a well organised progressive surge in the US. Getting noticed by media is only a part of the problem, and it leads straight into another part of the problem – noticed, but only to be disparaged.

          And that’s where “new” media come in as a counter narrative because, like progressives, they do not have the same institutional interests or investments at heart as major networks, who are all tied up in the same scraggled “money bundle” as many or most politicians and their corporate donors/sponsors.

          And no, unlike many US commentators, I don’t think simply getting money out of politics will sort things, but it’s a start.

          • SPC 2.1.1.2.1

            If the new intake organise successfully, they will remain as their party candidates and they will grow their representation within the wider party.

            The key development is when they start winning the swing races, then neither the old guard or the media can be dismissive.

            There is however an established process for the traditional organising/fundraising, which they are expected to follow. It’s forbidden to ask for money while on site, so each party has a building where they go and literally spend hours each day, each week, each year just phone calling people off lists of names asking for money (the party takes a cut). They sit alongside each other, cubicle by cubicle like in a cheap call centre. Then there are the fund raisers etc – a huge amount of their time just raising money.

            Crushing the human spirit under the heel of mammon.

      • Ian Barnes 2.1.2

        Well, Bill- you and Cenk were much closer on predicting the House results than me. I bow before my betters! Yet, not only did the GOP hold the Senate, they increased their majority. Over at SCOTUS, Bader-Ginsburg will have to hang on for two more years, but at least American political normalcy has been restored- the return to legislative gridlock.

  3. ScottGN 3

    Kemp, the GOP candidate for governor in Georgia is also that state’s Secretary of State and 2 days before Election Day he’s announced an investigation of the Georgia Democratic Party for an alleged hacking of the state’s voter registration system.

    • Macro 3.1

      Yeah – It’s almost unbelievable! But here it is:

      In perhaps the most outrageous example of election administration partisanship in the modern era, Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, who is running for governor while simultaneously in charge of the state’s elections, has accused the Democratic Party without evidence of hacking into the state’s voter database. He plastered a headline about it on the Secretary of State’s website, which thousands of voters use to get information about voting on election day.

      It’s just the latest in a series of partisan moves by Kemp, who has held up more than 50,000 voter registrations for inconsistencies as small as a missing hyphen, fought rules to give voters a chance to prove their identities when their absentee ballot applications are rejected for a lack of a signature match, and been aggressive in prosecuting those who have done nothing more than try to help those in need of assistance in casting ballots.

      But the latest appalling move by Kemp to publicly accuse the Democrats of hacking without evidence is even worse than that: Kemp has been one of the few state election officials to refuse help from the federal Department of Homeland Security to deter foreign and domestic hacking of voter registration databases. After computer scientists demonstrated the insecurity of the state’s voting system, he was sued for having perhaps the most vulnerable election system in the country. His office has been plausibly accused of destroying evidence, which would have helped to prove the vulnerabilities of the state election system.

      https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/11/georgia-governor-candidate-brian-kemp-attempts-last-minute-banana-republic-style-voter-manipulation.html

    • Bill 3.2

      Uh-huh.

  4. gsays 4

    i am not for a moment going to pretend that i know anything about US politics.
    what i will observe is the confidence placed in institutions that have been proven to be misguided. (that is generous).

    for example standard and poors and moodys, right up till the faeces hit the spinning blades, in 2008 where still offering A and A+ ratings on junk financial products.
    our media, to this day, breathlessly repeats every bottom burp from these clowns as if its from on high.

    i figure they are the equivalent of current media and pollsters.
    the dinosaur old model, not seeing its feet are stuck in tar and its getting deeper.

  5. Adrian Thornton 5

    It is also worth noting that the White House historically (well since WW2) usually takes a hammering in the midterms, so Trump losing here wouldn’t be too unusual.

    ‘The Devastating History Of Midterm Elections’

    https://www.npr.org/2014/10/30/360133533/the-devastating-history-of-midterm-elections

    What will be really interesting is what happens in the Democratic party after the midterm bunting has been cleared away ..

    • Bill 5.1

      What will be really interesting is what happens in the Democratic party after the midterm bunting has been cleared away ..

      Yes. Precisely.

  6. Andre 6

    Fivethirtyeight is picking roughly 38 seat gain by the Dems, with an 80% confidence interval of the Dems gaining between 58 and 20 seats.

    https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/2018-midterm-election-forecast/house/

    CNN is picking the Dems will gain 31 seats, going from 195 currently to 226, which would give them a 17 seat majority.

    https://edition.cnn.com/election/2018/forecast

    So Uygur isn’t really going out on much of a limb with a prediction of of the Dems gaining 38 to 50 seats. The Guardian being a British publication wouldn’t be my first choice to go get a feel for the consensus msm opinion on an American political issue.

    The outcomes I will find more interesting are places like the Nebraska 2nd, where a Dem on the progressive side of the party is running in a longtime Republican district with a Republican incumbent. If she pulls out a win, then the argument for the Dems to become more progressive gets strengthened. However, so far in the Adolf Twitler era, the Dems that have pulled off upset wins have been the moderate centrists such as Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania, Doug Jones in Alabama.

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/11/03/kara-eastman-nebraska-democrats-2018-elections-222185

    • Bill 6.1

      Uygur used Realclearpolitics poll of poll averages which, I guess was an attempt to get away from any charges of cherry picking favourable polls and get…well, an average indication of where things sit. But anyway….

      So, I wouldn’t know the various chances of who-ever in various districts or district voting patterns/histories, but why would the litmus test be a progressive in a solid red state who’s trailing by something like 9 points in September (Eastman in Nebraska), when there are other progressives running in red states who are neck and neck as of October (Cockburn in Virginia)?

      And why, if that 9 point disadvantage is turned around in Nebraska, should it merely be seen as “a strengthening” of the argument for a progressive agenda?

      Is the implication that Cockburn’s win in Virginia (if she wins) doesn’t mean anything?

      Or do you think (and there’s shades of the approach to Corbyn and UK Labour in this suggestion) there’s an idea that the bar being set for serious entertainment of a progressive agenda must be always be set just high enough to be out of reach?

      • Andre 6.1.1

        One of the reasons to be less interested in the Riggleman vs Cockburn contest is that it’s been diverted by sideshows such as the bigfoot erotica scandal and Riggleman apparently buddying around with white supremacists. So Riggleman is a flawed candidate in a similar vein to Moore in Alabama and Saccone in Pennsylvania. Whereas Eastman’s opponent Don Bacon appears to be pretty much scandal-free and a serious politician.

        But overall, if a picture emerges of progressive candidates getting more wins in unexpected places (including Cockburn), compared to moderates in hostile districts, then that strengthens the argument for a more progressive platform. The converse is also true, if moderate Dems pull out wins in normally Repug districts when progressives fall short, then that strengthens the conventional argument for occupying the moderate centre ground.

        For me personally, the bar for entertaining a seriously progressive platform is that it’s electable. If seriously progressive isn’t electable, I’ll grit my teeth and accept moderately progressive, and when it comes right down to it, I’ll put on my full hazmat protective gear and settle for moderate status quo when the alternative is reactionary or worse.

        • Ad 6.1.1.1

          With spectacular media coverage of the President, surging economic growth, wage increases solid, headline unemployment at 3% lowest since the GFC, and a lot more faith int he political system from the President actually quickly delivering on his campaign promises, it’d be a relief to see just a few good gains for the Democrats.

          If they take Congress majority that would be welcome.

          It’s the largest democracy,3rd largest country by population. So its system has massive inbuilt inertia. Small changes this time.

          • Andre 6.1.1.1.1

            “It’s the largest democracy”

            You reckon the US can legitimately be called a democracy but India can’t?

            • Ad 6.1.1.1.1.1

              Fair enough second largest.
              Inertia applies to them both for same reason.

              • Macro

                Can you fairly call it a democracy when the power of a vote in California is only 1/68th that of a vote in Wyoming? Can you call it a democracy when hundreds of thousands, if not millions, are denied voting rights because of their ethnicity. Can you call it a democracy when districts are so gerrymandered that a minority vote will almost always be guaranteed the win? The US is fast moving towards a Nation that will be ruled not by the majority but by the powerful minority and that IMHO is not a democracy.

                • Ad

                  There’s a spectrum of what counts as democracy.

                  The US are far better at the democratic scrutiny of power in their democracy for example, compared to most democracies (including ours).

                  • Macro

                    “The US are far better at the democratic scrutiny of power in their democracy for example, compared to most democracies (including ours)”.

                    Except they now have a Supreme Court stacked with Judges biased towards the right – the minority faction of elites that even as we discuss this – are actively doing their damnedest to subvert the democratic process. Further more the last two appointments to this august body which ultimately determine the justness of their democratic process were both elected on a Senate vote that represented a minority of US voters.

                    In fact, when the Senate confirmed Trump’s first nominee, Neil Gorsuch, it was a watershed moment in American history. For the first time, a president who lost the popular vote had a supreme court nominee confirmed by senators who received fewer votes – nearly 22 million fewer – than the senators that voted against him. And by now, it will not surprise you to discover that the senators who voted for the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh represent 38 million fewer people than the ones who voted no.

                    With the supreme court in hand, all those other tactics – partisan gerrymandering, voter ID and the rest – are protected from the only institution that could really threaten them. But it doesn’t stop there. The supreme court can be used to do more than approve the minority rule laws that come before it. It can further the project on its own.

                    In 2015, the court came within one vote of holding that independent redistricting commissions (which reduce partisan gerrymandering) are actually unconstitutional. The swing vote in that case, Anthony Kennedy, is gone. And the court in 2013 famously invalidated a major portion of the Voting Rights Act which put checks on voter-suppression efforts of the kind now taking place all over the country.

                    Taken together, this is a powerful set of tools. Draw maps that let you win even when you lose. Use the resulting power to enact measures to suppress the vote of the other side further. Count on a minority rule president to undercount your opponents in the census, and a minority-rule Senate to confirm justices who will strike down any obstacles to the plan.

                    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/nov/04/america-minority-rule-voter-suppression-gerrymandering-supreme-court

      • Andre 6.2.1

        Sure, fivethirtyeight didn’t pick the final result. They described the Grab’em’fuhrer’s chances as slightly better than 1 in 4. The final result ended up being on the shoulder of the curve of their simulations (scroll down to the bottom of your link).

        But they remain a team of pretty skilled people spending their working days trying to track down the best information to use to put together a prediction. And you can bet they’ve put a lot of effort into working out how they could have done better for then and for now and for the future. What do you think is a better source of informed analysis? Your hopes and reckons? My hopes and reckons? The consensus of an out-on-the-fringes echo chamber? (Let’s face it, most of us commenters here on TS are a long long way away from any kind of political centre)

      • Phil 6.2.2

        Would you have complete confidence getting on a plane, if you knew it had a 28.6% chance of crashing?

  7. One Two 7

    Vote rigging will originate from inside…

  8. AB 8

    In terms of the post-election media narrative – Blue Wave or no Blue Wave won’t matter. Neither of them will be interpreted as popular support for ‘progressive’ opinion:
    – Blue Wave – Dems succeeded despite progressives
    – No Blue Wave – Dems failed because of progressives
    It’s that crude, and as I said somewhere else – Chomsky and Herman anatomised the reasons why decades ago.

    • Bill 8.1

      I think that’s a fair take on what the narrative would be in an environment that had no, what Uygur is calling, “new media”.

      But their presence and growing penetration makes all the difference, and is why he talks of “civil war” between new and old media.

      • AB 8.1.1

        Well I hope Uygur is right. I do catch up with TYT especially recently, but have no sense of how deeply it penetrates the consciousness of the US public at large.

      • boggis the cat 8.1.2

        What isn’t being factored in is that the old media are owned by old money — and a lot of it. That money can buy the favour of the internet gatekeepers, and already has been.

        So far only the more fringe websites and YouTube channels have been targeted, but ‘fake news’ is a conveniently nebulous term that could be applied to any organisation, including TYT.

  9. Macro 9

    I’m not so sure that there will be anything like the win predicted by the pundits – despite the fact that there is around a 14% disapproval rating for Trump at the present time – and despite the fact that there is a huge increase in early voting and the youth and women of America are energised to vote – and despite the fact that the GOP have lost any pretence at having a moral compass. Indeed there are many factors which taken together would in normal circumstances, and in almost any other country ensure a dramatic shift in political representation in the legislature. But this election is happening in a country where any pretence of democratic process has long since disappeared. There can be no equality of one person, one vote, where so many native americans are disenfranchised, where afro-americans and latinos are denied the vote, where districts are so gerrymandered that losers of the popular vote will be declared the winner. And that is not the half of it – because each state is allowed but 2 Senators, a voter in California has 1/68th the voting power of a voter in Wyoming.
    Take, for instance, the recent appointment of Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. this was by a vote in the Senate of 50 – 48. Yet when the populations supporting those Senators for and against are summed up, the 50 Senators voting for Kavanaugh represented 38 million fewer people than the ones voting No. In 2016 Trump amassed a Collegial Vote of 304 against Clintons 227 despite loosing the Popular vote, and indeed had a total of 70,000 votes gone a different way in 3 swing states he would not be President.
    I thoroughly recommend this Article by Ian Samuel, Associate Professor of Law at Indiana University Bloomington’s Maurer School of Law.

    The American right is in the midst of a formidable project: installing permanent minority rule, guaranteeing control of the government even as the number of actual human beings who support their political program dwindles…..

    With the deck this stacked, it isn’t enough to win. Wresting control back from the entrenched minority will take overwhelming victory. It may take, in other words, a genuine political revolution.

  10. joe90 10

    Turkeys and Christmas.

    This is a chart from the CBO score of AHCA, the House-passed bill to repeal-and-replace the ACA. Yearly premiums for a 64-year-old making $26,500 a year would go from $1700 under ACA to *$16,100* for the same insurance. pic.twitter.com/F9TfbkfUkX— Steven Dennis (@StevenTDennis) November 4, 2018

    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1059084206813392896.html

  11. Andre 11

    “To win the House this year, Democrats need to win on Republican terrain. Cook Political Report rates 113 races as potentially competitive in 2018; of those, 100 of them are held by Republicans. Democrats need to flip at least 24.

    If you look just at the Republican-held toss-up races, they are almost all in districts that should be favorable ground for the GOP. Cook, which rates districts based on how much more Republican or Democratic they are than the country as a whole, classifies most of the districts as somewhere between R+2 and R+10. But Democrats also have their eyes on Lean Republican districts — which are even stronger Republican-leaning. Ohio’s Seventh, where Harbaugh is running, is R+12. These are seats where Republicans have a built-in advantage.

    In the most competitive House races, particularly in districts that lean toward Republicans, researchers at the Brookings Institution ran the numbers and concluded that Democrats are relying more on moderate candidates in those districts over self-identified progressives.”

    The whole thing is kind of a longish argument for the Dems being a big tent party that can hold the range from Joe Donnelly to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, but it’s worth the read. It only takes a few minutes, instead of being over an hour of video.

    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/11/5/18042804/2018-midterm-elections-moderates-indiana-ohio-west-virginia

  12. Tiger Mountain 12

    Cakewalk? not if horrendous voter repression and gerrymandering has its intended effect, combined with the usual alienation and high non participation rates, and the general fucked-ness of the Democratic Party

    busy early voting can just mean those who were keen on voting anyway, have done so earlier, America is so munted at this stage, not all states even allow people time off work to vote!

    other posters have laid out the statistics of what votes are worth in different states, polling booth numbers reduced in some areas, millions of inmates and ex “felons” denied a vote–what a colossal undemocratic mess really, the only bright sparks are some of the campaigns being run by newer candidates

  13. joe90 13

    The fix is in.

    Election management systems also receive and aggregate precinct vote tallies for each county. Memory cards or flash drives then send the aggregated totals to online reporting systems, creating another hacking opportunity. Sometimes, the same flash drive goes back and forth between the online reporting system and the central tabulator as results are updated throughout the night.
    And while election officials insist our elections are too decentralized to allow an outcome altering hack, the reality is that just two vendors account for about 80 percent of US election equipment: Election Systems & Software, LLC and Dominion Voting.
    ES&S recently admitted that it has installed remote access software in election management systems used in about 300 jurisdictions that it won’t identify. And both Wisconsin and Florida approved the use of cellular modems in ES&S ballot scanners in 2015. Illinois and Michigan use cellular modems as well. According to computer science professor Andrew Appel, hackers could use fake cellular towers to intercept vote tallies as they are transmitted over these modems.

    https://demwritepress.com/2018/11/04/democrats-must-be-prepared-to-contest-poll-defying-election-results/

    • Tiger Mountain 13.1

      well done, I omitted vote tampering! from my grim little take on things @#13, heard a guy involved with US vote tabulating on RNZ, talking about the potential for this a week or so back

    • joe90 13.2

      I guess going from sweatshop garments to voting machines is a natural transition, when you’re running a pay to play scam.

      Presidential adviser Ivanka Trump’s fashion brand won first trial approval for 16 new trademarks from the Chinese government in October. These approvals come about three months after Ivanka announced that her brand was shutting down, and mark the largest number of new Chinese trademarks she has received in a single month since President Donald Trump took office.

      […]

      The newest Chinese trademarks cover fashion items including handbags, shoes, wedding dresses, and jewelry. (Ivanka’s business has previously relied on a Chinese manufacturer to supply handbags, shoes, and clothing.) The trademarks also cover items including nursing homes, sausage casing, and voting machines. Ivanka’s business applied for these trademarks in 2016.

      https://www.citizensforethics.org/ivanka-trump-trademarks/

  14. esoteric pineapples 14

    The Young Turks network is the fastest and easiest way to keep up with what is happening in US politics. I watch a few videos every night and it tells me almost all I need to know about what is going. It’s obviously progressive, but it is succinct and gets to the biggest stories the fastest.

  15. WeTheBleeple 15

    With the time zones variance, and time of voting open, and time to => (insert spyware here) => tally and count… Please kind folks who’d know, when might we expect some results?

    • Andre 15.1

      Polls closing times vary from noon New Zealand time for the earliest ones (in Indiana and Kentucky, solid Repug states) through to 5pm New Zealand time on the west coast.

      https://www.270towin.com/closing.php – New Zealand time is 6 hours earlier than EST (eastern standard time)

      Alaska is a couple of hours later, but is likely Repug and unlikely to be significant.

      There will likely be breathless reporting from exit polls throughout the day, but early voting is bigger in this election than previous ones, so waiting for the official counts after the polls close is a better idea then usual.

      • boggis the cat 15.1.1

        Indiana currently has a Democratic governor, and isn’t really a ‘Red State’. The economic improvement in the US is largely bypassing the Mid-West, and I expect by 2020 the entire region will look precarious for the Republicans.

        All recent US elections have come down to whether the Democratic Party can manage to lose, and they’ve been on a good roll since 2010.

        • Andre 15.1.1.1

          Eric Holcomb is a Democratic? News to me, and probably to him. Indiana’s governors have been Repugs since 2005. Heard of a dude called Mike Pence?

          You might be thinking of Joe Donnelly, the Democratic US senator. He was first elected to the senate in 2012. That was when the long term and well respected Republican Dick Lugar got primaried by that caricature gargoyle Richard Mourdock. Donnelly is looking fairly safe for re-election, possibly because his positions would better fit what used to be moderate Republican positions.

          Indiana used to be purple, but still redder than most of the rest of the rust belt. That redness has become more pronounced in the last decade or two.

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