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    No, Independents Are Not Just Discouraged Republicans

    No, Independents Are Not Just Discouraged Republicans

    The centerpiece of my thesis (discussed here and here) that Mitt Romney will win Tuesday’s election is his consistently strong showing among independent voters (ie, voters who identify as neither Republicans nor Democrats) across the majority of national and state polls, pretty much regardless of whether those are polls he’s winning or losing. On that score, I believe the polls; if they’re wrong about the | Read More »

    On Polling Models, Skewed & Unskewed

    On Polling Models, Skewed & Unskewed

    There’s a very large gulf between my conclusion, explained on Friday, that Obama is toast on Election Day and confident projections like Nate Silver’s poll-reading model still giving the president (at last check) a 77.4% chance of victory. Let me explain why, and what that says about the difference between my approach and Nate’s. The Limits of Mathematical Models “A page of history is worth | Read More »

    The Man Without A Mandate

    The Man Without A Mandate

    Barack Obama is trying to do something no president has ever done: get re-elected without winning the national popular vote. If he were to somehow succeed at this, he would be the weakest elected president since Rutherford B. Hayes, and the lamest lame duck in American history. Since popular vote totals were first recorded in 1824, four presidents have been elected while losing the popular | Read More »

    Why I Think Obama Is Toast

    Why I Think Obama Is Toast

    Barack Obama is toast. This is not something I say lightly. I generally try to remain cautious about predictions, because the prediction business is a humbling one. I have never been especially bullish on Mitt Romney, and I spent most of the summer and early fall arguing that this was basically a neck-and-neck race that would go down to the wire. But in the end, | Read More »

    Barack Obama: Soft on Rapists

    President Obama – having nothing better to talk about in his record – spent tonight on Jay Leno taking wildly out of context Richard Mourdock’s defense of his pro-life position even in cases of rape and incest, a position that may not be politically poll-tested but is morally admirable. Obama, desperate to stem the bleeding with female voters, is trying to cast Republicans as somehow | Read More »

    Barack Obama’s Potemkin Bipartisanship

    Barack Obama's Potemkin Bipartisanship

    One of the major reasons why Mitt Romney was able to make such rapid inroads against Barack Obama in their first debate, and why poll after poll shows that independent voters have turned decisively against Obama, is that Romney was able to lay bare the hollowness of Obama’s claims to bipartisanship. And given the Obama record of the past four years, there is no reason | Read More »

    The Debate Dogs That Didn’t Bark

    The Debate Dogs That Didn't Bark

    The debates are over. It’s worth taking a look at what they didn’t cover, which is sometimes as telling as what was said. In 2000 – as I noted in my first widely-read blog post a decade ago, and as Romney noted last night – the subject of terrorism was not even raised, although it would come to dominate Bush’s tenure in office. Some things | Read More »

    Barack Obama: Corporatist Collectivist (Part I of IV)

    Barack Obama: Corporatist Collectivist (Part I of IV)

    Barack Obama is not a socialist. It’s not surprising that people call him one: to the typical voter, “socialist” is often just shorthand for the next step leftward on the political spectrum from being an ordinary liberal, and people need a vocabulary to express their sense that they see in Obama a further left turn from Mondale-Dukakis-Kerry liberalism. To this day, the Democrats’ caucus in | Read More »

    Barack Obama: Corporatist Collectivist (Part II of IV)

    II. Obama and His Democrats: Their Own Words and Ideas Before we get to Obama’s policies, it’s important to lay the groundwork. Let’s look at his ideas. Barack Obama is well-known for his polished oratory, his delivery off a TelePrompter of carefully prepared and vetted speeches. Unsurprisingly, these prepared texts generally seek to cast his ideas and programs as consistent with the American traditions of | Read More »

    Barack Obama: Corporatist Collectivist (Part III of IV)

    III. The Stimulus, The Bailouts, and Obamacare The Obama Administration’s policies, in action, provide copious examples of both a broader inclination towards collectivism and a specific pattern of corporatism. Over and over, Obama has attempted to use federal spending, tax and regulatory powers to coopt institutions and mute competition in pursuit of greater government ability to redistribute wealth. Part III looks at the three main | Read More »

    Barack Obama: Corporatist Collectivist (Part IV of IV)

    IV. Obama and the Democrats: Their Policies See Part I, Part II & Part III. The stimulus, bailouts and Obamacare are the most egregious and well-known examples of the corporatist tendencies in Obama’s policy portfolio. But there numerous others. A. Entitlement Reform What is the purpose of Social Security and Medicare? They are neither individualist programs, in which individuals provide for themselves, nor welfare programs, | Read More »

    Romney vs Obama, Round II

    Realistically, very few presidential debates have the kind of clear-cut winner that the first Romney-Obama debate did. It’s more productive to look at what each candidate came looking to accomplish. Romney: Romney came in tonight with three main goals. One, he wanted to repeat his strong showing from the first debate. He did that – he was vigorous, authoritative, and came across as the same | Read More »

    Have Obama and Biden Overinvested In The Middle Class Tax Argument?

    Have Obama and Biden Overinvested In The Middle Class Tax Argument?

    Every campaign involves strategic choices about where to attack your opponent. One of the major points of attack leveled by the Obama-Biden campaign against Mitt Romney is the Democrats’ claim that the Romney-Ryan tax plan would raise taxes on the middle class. There is evidence that this attack has done a good deal of damage to Romney, but it is beginning to look as if | Read More »

    Now This Was an MSNBC Debate

    Chris Matthews, in his epic post-debate meltdown after the Romney-Obama debate, had the most telling line: “this was not an MSNBC debate.” Matthews and other liberals were particularly upset that Mitt Romney had managed to actually speak uninterrupted, occasionally running over his time and requesting opportunities to respond to things Obama said (although the final tally showed Obama spoke for 4 more minutes than Romney, | Read More »

    What To Look For In The VP Debate

    What To Look For In The VP Debate

    Thursday’s VP debate in Louisville – Muhammad Ali’s old home town – promises to be riveting TV, even if the absence of Sarah Palin means that, unlike in 2008, it’s unlikely that the VP debate will outdraw the presidential debates for ratings. On the Republican side, expectations are running high: Paul Ryan is a master of verbal combat, and hopes are high that he can | Read More »