Tag Archives: President

Open Letter to Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

It has now been a little over a week since your resignation as governor of Alaska, and thankfully you haven’t made many recent headlines. It seems America has been too busy discussing race relations, health care, and the economy to notice you. How refreshing!

As a 17-year-old American who has to live in this country for probably the next 80-90 years, I formally request that you pack your bags and swim across to Russia. After all, it must be close enough if you can see it from your house. I have never seen, nor have I ever heard of, a politician less qualified and less engaged than you are, and I want you to leave politics for good before you start giving the impression to other politicians that somehow these deficiencies are acceptable.

It’s not so much that you and I see two different Americas, or that we just have different perceptions of the same core American ideals. It’s that you fundamentally misunderstand America’s ideals. Every time you talk about freedom, or the future, or “the wisdom of the people,” I only have one question: what the hell are you trying to say?

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2008 Early Voting Statistics by States

Early Voting Statistics by States*

State Mainpage Early Voting Stats 2008 Total Early Vote Selected
Stats
2008 Early Vote / 2004 Total Vote 2004 Total Votes Cast 2004
% Early
(Ass.Press)
Last Updated
United States  
23,438,889
  19.0% 123,535,883 22.5%  
Alabama         1,890,317 3.5%  
Alaska         314,502 21.4%  
Arizona         2,038,069 40.8%  
Scottsdale City html 31,562   28.8% 109,469   10/24
Arkansas   340,964
Ballot  
Absentee 7.7%
In-Person 92.3%
31.8% 1,070,573 33.4% 10/31
California
(58 of 58 counties reporting, thnx to Joe Holland)
  3,293,617   25.8% 12,589,367 33.2% 10/24-11/1
Colorado html 1,477,836
Party  
Dem 37.7%
Rep 35.9%
No/Oth 26.4%
Ballot  
Absentee 75.3%
In-person 24.7%
68.8% 2,148,036 47.9% 10/31
(Party
stats
current through 10/30)
Connecticut         1,607,808 8.9%  
Delaware         377,407 4.9%  
District of Columbia         230,105 8.1%  
Florida^
(in-person & absentee returned)
html Election Code 9250 3,787,414
  2008 2004
Party    
Dem 45.6% 40.7%
Rep 37.8% 43.5%
No/Oth 16.6% 15.8%
Ballot    
Absentee 39.4%  
In-person 60.6%  
46.9% 7,640,319 36.1% 11/1
Georgia html
1,994,990
Race  
White 60.2%
Black 35.1%
Other/Unk 2.2%
Sex  
Men 40.4%
Women 56.2%
Unk 0.9%
Ballot  
Absentee 11.1%
In-person 88.9%
60.1% 3,317,336 20.2% 11/1
Hawaii         431,662 31.0%  
Idaho         612,786 15.9%  
Illinois         5,350,493 5.6%  
Champaign Cnty html 7,685   9.1% 84,153 4.9% 10/30
Cook Cnty html 226,090   22.1% 1,024,876   10/31
Chicago City html 260,703   24.7% 1,056,830   10/30
Indiana html 455,035   18.1% 2,512,142 10.4% 10/30
Marion Cnty   57,249 In-person only 19.3% 296,243 8.0% 10/31
Iowa   454,274
Party  
Dem 47.3%
 
Rep 28.8%
No/Oth 23.9%
29.8% 1,521,966 30.8% 10/31
Kansas         1,213,108 20.4%  
Johnson Cnty html 109,190   42.1% 259,599 37.8% 10/30
Kentucky         1,816,867 5.4%  
Louisiana html 266,880
Party  
Dem 58.5%
Rep 28.4%
No/Oth 13.1%
Race  
White 60.8%
Black 36.3%
Other 2.9%
Sex  
Men 43.5%
Women 56.5%
Ballot  
Absentee 5.1%
In-Person 94.9%
13.6% 1,956,590 6.5% 10/29
(In-person early voting period ended 10/28)
Maine html 163,981
Party  
Dem 42.9%
Rep 28.2%
No/Oth 28.9%
21.8% 751,519 21.4% 10/31
Maryland         2,395,791 5.8%  
Massachusetts         2,927,455 6.0%  
Michigan         4,875,692 17.9%  
Minnesota         2,842,912 8.2%  
Mississippi         1,152,365 6.1%  
Missouri         2,764,635 7.6%  
Montana   184,632   40.5% 456,096 21.7% 10/29
Nebraska   147,992   18.7% 792,906 13.9% 10/30
Nevada# html 500,339   60.2% 831,563 53.1% 10/30
Clark Cnty html 347,491
Party  
Dem 52.5%
Rep 30.4%
No/Oth 17.2%
63.5% 546,858 59.4% 10/30
Washoe Cnty html 90,638
Party  
Dem 47.8%
Rep 35.0%
No/Oth 17.2%
56.8% 159,511 33.0% 10/30
New Hampshire         683,672 9.0%  
New Jersey         3,638,153 5.4%  
New Mexico         775,301 50.6%  
Bernalillo Cnty html 162,452
Party  
Dem 53.4%
Rep 32.9%
No/Oth 13.7%
Ballot  
Absentee 37.6%
In-person 62.4%
61.9% 262,617   10/30
New York         7,448,266 5.1%  
North Carolina zip 2,350,712
  2008 2004
Party    
Dem 51.8% 48.6%
Rep 30.0% 37.4%
None 18.2% 14.1%
Age    
18-29 13.9%  
30-44 22.7%  
45-64 40.7%  
65+ 22.7%  
Race    
White 69.5%  
Black 26.3%  
Other 4.1%  
Sex    
Men 42.7% 42.9%
Women 56.4% 56.6%
Unk 0.2% 0.4%
Ballot    
Absentee 8.0% 13.1%
One-Stop 92.0% 86.9%
66.2% 3,552,449 30.8% 11/1 5:26am
North Dakota         316,049 17.8%  
Ohio*         5,722,443 10.7%  
Champaign Cnty html 3,666   19.2% 19,080 8.4% 10/31
Cuyahoga Cnty Pdf 228,003
Ballot  
Absentee 81.0%
In-person 19.0%
33.2% 687,255 12.4% 10/31
Franklin Cnty html 178,260   33.4% 533,575 8.8% 10/30
Gallia Cnty html 2,168   15.1% 14,391 11.1% 10/28
Greene Cnty html 5,736   7.1% 80,602 10.5% 10/28
Knox Cnty html 7,336   26.9% 27,302 13.2% 10/30
Montgomery Cnty html 50,577   17.6% 287,635 10.2% 10/30
Muskingum Cnty html 6,629   16.8% 39,565 12.6% 10/28
Ross Cnty html 8,086   25.3% 31,979 12.3% 10/30
Seneca Cnty html 4,156   15.1% 27,607 10.8% 10/30
Summit Cnty html 73,920   26.2% 281,735 10.1% 10/31
Tuscarawas Cnty html 9,339   21.3% 43,760 11.1% 10/31
Union Cnty html 3,324   14.5% 22,911 7.7% 10/28
Oklahoma         1,463,758 10.1%  
Oregon Pdf 931,310   50.3% 1,851,671 100.0% 10/30
Pennsylvania         5,769,590 5.5%  
Rhode Island         440,228 4.4%  
South Carolina         1,626,720 9.5%  
South Dakota         394,930 24.0%  
Tennessee Pdf 1,550,939   63.1% 2,456,610 47.3% 10/30
(Early voting ended 10/30)
Texas
(15 largest counties)
html 3,117,005
Ballot  
Absentee 6.4%
In-person 93.6%
42.1% 7,410,765 51.1% 10/30
Utah         942,010 7.2%  
Vermont         314,220 19.1%  
Virginia         3,223,156 7.0%  
Fairfax Cnty   78,425   17.0% 426,126 10.5% 10/30
Washington         2,883,499 68.2%  
Clark Cnty html 106,053   61.6% 172,277 62.8% 10/31
King Cnty html 316,995   35.3% 899,199 62.8% 10/31
Pierce Cnty Pdf 125,330   39.5% 317,012 80.3% 10/31
Snohomish Cnty Pdf 126,709   42.6% 297,187 65.3% 10/30
Spokane Cnty Pdf 132,172   64.8% 203,886 64.3% 10/31
Whatcom Cnty html 60,165   65.7% 91,515 72.8% 10/31
West Virginia   96,239
Party  
Dem 59.4%
Rep 31.5%
No/Oth 9.2%
Ballot  
Absentee 9.5%
In-Person 90.5%
12.5% 769,645 19.1% 10/29
Wisconsin         3,016,288 12.1%  
Wyoming         245,789 19.6%

* Link below for full spreadsheet of complete statistics

2008 Early Voting Statistics

John McCain’s International Republican Institute Gave $448,873 to Rashid Khalidi’s Center for Palestine Research and Studies

The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood.

Rashid Khalidi, American born historian of the Middle East, Professor of Modern Arab Studies' at Columbia University's School of International & Public Affairs.

The Huffington Post published an article by Seth Colter Walls which points out the hypocrisy of the current McCain-Palin campaign attacks on Barack Obama for attending a 2003 farewell dinner honoring former University of Chicago professor Rashid Khalidi, when Senator John McCain has FINANCED projects of Professor Khalidi since the 1990’s. 

During the 1990s, while he served as chairman of the International Republican Institute (IRI), McCain distributed several grants to the Palestinian research center co-founded by Khalidi, including one worth half a million dollars.

A 1998 tax filing for the McCain-led group shows a $448,873 grant to Khalidi’s Center for Palestine Research and Studies for work in the West Bank. (See grant number 5180, “West Bank: CPRS” on page 14 of this PDF.)

The relationship extends back as far as 1993, when John McCain joined IRI as chairman in January. Foreign Affairs noted in September of that year that IRI had helped fund several extensive studies in Palestine run by Khalidi’s group, including over 30 public opinion polls and a study of “sociopolitical attitudes.”

Of course, there’s seemingly nothing objectionable with McCain’s organization helping a Palestinian group conduct research in the West Bank or Gaza. But it does suggest that McCain could have some of his own explaining to do as he tries to make hay out of Khalidi’s ties to Obama.

McCain Funded Work Of Palestinian His Campaign Hopes To Tie To Obama

McCain’s International Republican Institute IRSTax Return Shows Khalidi Grant (PDF file)

New Ad Campaign Features Republicans & Independents Supporting Barack Obama (Video)

Academy Award winning documentarian Errol Morris has released a new ad campaign featuring republicans and independents who are voting for Obama.

From the MiddleForObama YouTube page:

“Between the far right and extreme left are people in the ‘middle’
common-sense Americans, of all political affiliations, who are more concerned with the issues facing our Country than strict partisan ideology. In this election, like most others, it’s these people who will ultimately choose our next leader.

Please share their stories with those you know that are still undecided. We don’t have much time!”

Palin Shocker: McCain Won’t Regulate Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Coal burning smokestacks emitting pollution

Coal burning smokestacks emitting pollution

Given Senator John McCain’s past Senate voting record AGAINST clean energy, it should come as no surprise to anyone that if he and Republican vice presidential running mate Sarah Palin are elected on November 4th, a McCain-Palin administration does not plan to regulate greenhouse emissions in an effort to reduce global warming.

Voters who care about either global warming or clean energy have only one choice — and it isn’t McCain-Palin.

It’s time to stop trying to guess whether the latest McCain campaign gaffe revision on global warming means the Arizonan has walked away from his previous support for mandatory government control of greenhouse gases. He has.

That should have been clear from McCain’s repeated rejection of the word “mandatory” to describe his program, his choice of a global warming denier for vice president, and his failure to even mention global warming during his acceptance speech. Most recently, his chief economic adviser Douglas Holtz-Eakin said on Sunday that McCain does not agree with the Supreme Court decision that labels carbon dioxide a pollutant and requiring EPA to regulate it. He labels Obama’s decision to obey the Supreme Court decision “a draconian regulatory approach.”

Now the McCain campaign has decided to eliminate the ambiguity entirely in the desperate and erratic final days of his campaign. In her big greenwashing energy speech at an Ohio solar energy company, Palin was as blunt as possible in her prepared (and delivered) remarks:

And we will control greenhouse gas emissions by giving American businesses new incentives and new rewards to seek, instead of just giving them new taxes to pay and new orders that they must follow — “so says government”.

GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin delivers energy policy speech

GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin delivers energy policy speech

The final three words were ones she added, but the prepared text alone leaves no room for doubt. A McCain-Palin administration will not be issuing new orders that businesses must follow to control greenhouse gas emissions. It will use a voluntary or incentive-based approach, one that has never worked in any country to restrain emissions growth.

McCain and his campaign have made a concerted effort to reassure conservatives he’s not going to take strong action on climate, while hoping that moderates would be fooled just like some Bush voters were in 2000 ignore all this talk, which itself is a core campaign strategy of doubletalk (see “Memo to media: McCain doubletalks to woo conservatives and independents at the same time“).

The Palin speech was the last piece of the puzzle. For one last time, let’s consider the increasingly sorry history of the McCain campaign on climate and clean energy:

Remember, it was Bush’s Vice President, Dick Cheney, who called Bush’s promised to regulate utility carbon emissions “a mistake” in March 2001, and Cheney is probably the main reason Bush walked away from his commitment.

So perhaps we should start listening to McCain’s VP choice, as well as McCain himself, and all of his advisers, on climate and clean energy issues.

If you care about global warming, the gravest preventable threat to the health and well-being of all Americans, and if you care about clean energy, the greatest potential source of new jobs and new industries in the coming decades, then you must vote Obama-Biden.

Palin Shocker: McCain Won’t Regulate Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Palin Sees Dip in Popularity in Alaska, Rest of Nation

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin

The Fairbanks Daily News Miner reports that Governor Sarah Palin has lost the support of Alaskan Democrats and Independents that were at one time a major part of her electoral base.  As more voters get to know Gov. Palin for her ethics violations, faux ‘Joe six-pack’ folksiness, religious fanaticism, secessionist connections and a secretive, restrictive administration governing Alaska connected to corruption, cronies, lobbyists and big oil, they are finding her to be a fraud and a hypocrite.  American voters are turned off by the McCain-Palin campaign of fear and divisiveness while Gov. Palin has been exposed as a mean spirited and vindictive politician who mixed personal financial gain and vendettas with her quest for political power.

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Commentary: Republicans Making Sure Every American Vote Isn’t Counted

US Politics Today has published an excellent op-ed by national political strategist and editor Joe Rothstein in which he examines the widespread suppression of American voters’ right to participate in the presidential election this November 4th.

Despite all of the public interest in and enthusiasm for the 2008 campaign, despite all the new voter registrations, on November 4 the number of votes cast may be considerably fewer than 120 million votes counted for Bush and Kerry in 2004. Maybe as much as 10% fewer.

Why?

Start with the fact that 39 states already have purged 13 million voters off the voters’ rolls since 2004.

Yes, you heard that right. At least 13 million voters have been purged from the rolls since 2004. That’s 10% of the 120 million votes cast in 2004 and twice as many voters than have just been added through massive registration drives.

In many states, the number of names dropped from the voters’ lists has been breathtaking: 17% in Colorado, 15% in Washington State, 14% in New York, 13% in Nevada, 10% in Missouri.

These purges are the cynical byproduct of 2000’s voting debacle. After 2000 the public demanded election reform. What the Republican Congress enacted in response was legalized vote suppression. Their idea of election reform was to set up a system that required states to match voter registrations against other computerized files such as drivers’ license and to disenfranchise those whose files don’t match—even if the mismatch is the result of a simple clerical recording error, or because of a missing middle initial or the absence of a Jr. or Sr.

Wisconsin refused to play along with this game when a test run showed one in four voters would have been eliminated because of typos and other minor problems.

In Ohio, 200,000 newly registered voters fell into the mismatch trap, and the Republicans are waging a ferocious legal battle to get their hands on those names so they can challenge them when they vote. Even a unanimous rejection by the U.S. Supreme Court hasn’t stopped the Republicans from continuing this fight. They know that the state’s electoral votes may hang in the balance.

In the first few days of early voting in Florida this week, 5,000 voters already had been rejected, mostly because of typos and variations in the spelling of peoples’ names.

The “matching” requirement is a highly effective legacy of Republican voter “reform.” Voter ID is another.

In 7 states, voters won’t be permitted to vote without valid picture ID cards. This requirement alone may change the outcome of elections in Indiana, Florida and Michigan by essentially disenfranchising those without driver’s licenses or employment ID cards.

In 17 other states some form of ID will be required to get a ballot. Just having your name on the official voter roll will not be enough.

The Republicans are also mounting their most ambitious effort ever to challenge ballots in predominantly Democratic voting precincts over any pretext. More than 1.5 million votes were thrown out in 2004 after they were classified as “spoiled” because of such minor errors as blank spaces, stray marks or tears. The losses hit hardest among minorities in low-income precincts, who are often forced to vote on antiquated machines. In 2004, the number of spoiled ballots in New Mexico—19,000—was three times George Bush’s margin of victory there.

Reporter Greg Palast and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. have an article in the current Rolling Stone magazine that outlines many of ways Republicans are trying to suppress the 2008 vote. Ever heard of “vote caging?” Here’s how Palast and Kennedy say it works:

“Many voters are given provisional ballots under an insidious tactic known as “vote caging,” which uses targeted mailings to disenfranchise black voters whose addresses have changed. In 2004, despite a federal consent order forbidding Republicans from engaging in the practice, the GOP sent out tens of thousands of letters to “confirm” the addresses of voters in minority precincts. If a letter was returned (unopened) for any reason–because the voter was away at school or serving in the military–the GOP challenged the voter for giving a false address.”

Bill Moyers interviewed professor Mark Crispin Miller about all this on last week’s Bill Moyers Journal and got an earful about vote suppression tactics. Crispin details them in his new book, Loser Take All: Election Fraud and the Subversion of Democracy 2000-2008. For anyone who wants more detail, check out Moyers’ web site http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/ or read Miller’s book.

….Or, just pay attention to all of the mischief occurring in these last days before November 4. It’s hard to find, since the mainstream media seems to have an aversion to touching vote suppression as a real and important factor in this election.

But many bloggers are paying attention to the mysterious absentee ballots that are showing up in Democrats’ mailboxes in Nevada, trying to lure Democratic voters into sending their absentee votes to an erroneous address. Others have pointed toward the anonymous pamphlets in Philadelphia’s black precincts, warning people that police will be watching the polls to catch those delinquent in paying parking tickets. And so on.

According to the public opinion surveys, if the usual 55-60% of registered voters turn out November 4, Barack Obama will be elected President and Democrats will claim a sweeping victory in both houses of Congress. But given how close some contests are, a change of just a few percentage points can make a world a difference.

Below the surface of the daily photo ops, the TV spots and the regular news coverage, there’s a subterranean campaign in progress to discourage voting in Democratic areas, to challenge Democratic voters and ballots, and to reduce the Democratic vote count. If it works, even by a little, its impact could be literally world changing.

Making Sure Every Vote Isn’t Counted