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LetMyPeopleVote's Journal
LetMyPeopleVote's Journal
March 28, 2016

Clinton Lawyer Marc Elias Among Those Behind Major New Voting Rights Lawsuit in Wisconsin

This is old news to some degree but I am proud that Marc Elias is suing to try to protect voting rights http://electionlawblog.org/?p=72945

March 21, 2016

Hillary Clinton is funding congressional races so she can enter White House with a majority

Hillary Clinton is helping the Democratic Party elect new Democratic members of Congress http://www.dailynewsbin.com/news/hillary-clinton-is-funding-congressional-races-so-she-can-enter-white-house-with-a-majority/24188/

One of the most intriguing storylines of the 2016 election has turned out to be one of the most underreported. Every candidate for President hopes to not only enter the White House, but do so with a congressional majority in hand. Although Hillary Clinton is the clear frontrunner and is likely to win the election, republican gerrymandering means that her odds of having a democratic House and Senate are questionable. But she’s spent the past six months trying to rectify that by essentially funding the congressional races of 2016 democratic candidates herself.

They’re called Victory Funds, and the short of it is that while Hillary has been out on the campaign trail raising funds for her own Presidential campaign, she’s been making it easy for her donors to simultaneously donate to the various state level democratic parties. The money will be divvied up among the democrats running for election and reelection in the Senate and House.

After the democrats took some lumps in the past few congressional races and lost both houses of congress to the republicans, Clinton has put together this co-fundraising strategy as a way of entering office with as many democratic allies on the hill as possible. Even as she pulls further ahead in the primary race and begins to pivot to the general election, she’s been breathing life into her party’s congressional chances along the way.
March 16, 2016

The truth about primary voter turnout

The GOP types are hoping that the lower turnout in the Democratic primaries mean that Trump will win. That is not true http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/presidential-campaign/272381-the-truth-about-primary-voter-turnout

There actually is no historic correlation between primary turnout and general election turnout. None. The highest turnout in a Democratic primary—before the outlier of 2008—was in 1988. Gov. Michael Dukakis got killed in November. Democratic primary turnout was actually lower in 1992—two million fewer Democrats voted in the primaries that year. The drop in turnout didn’t stop Bill Clinton from winning the general election convincingly.

Turnout data also shows Americans don't vote in primaries because they're excited about November. They vote in primaries when the outcome of the party nomination is in doubt. The outcome of this primary hasn't been in doubt for most Democratic primary voters despite a hard-fought race. That’s a statement that may strike people who read campaign news every day as odd, especially given the fundraising success of the Sanders campaign. Democrats have seen Hillary Clinton as our party’s likely 2016 nominee for years and her strength is beginning to catch up to this underlying reality. Turnout is lower because there has been less suspense about the outcome.

Higher Republican primary turnout is also no reason to think the GOP is growing their base. In zero states has the number of primary votes even come close to the number of Republican general election votes. Primary electorates and general electorates are just very different animals.

Look at the data from New Hampshire and Virginia. In New Hampshire, the state with the highest turnout percentage so far, there were 284,120 votes in the GOP primary, but Mitt Romney received 329,918 votes in 2012. In Virginia, just over a million votes were cast in their Super Tuesday primary, but Mitt Romney won more than 1.8 million votes in the state in 2012. Again: there is no data correlation.

Fear—far more than enthusiasm—is a huge motivating factor in many Republican voters’ minds. In a Clarity Campaign Labs satisfaction index created out of publicly available exit polls, barely 50 percent of GOP voters said they would be satisfied with the three leading candidates getting the nomination - 53 percent Rubio, 51 percent Cruz, 48 percent Trump.

Democrats on the other hand would strongly back the nominee: 78 percent would be satisfied with Secretary Hillary Clinton and 63 percent would back Sen. Bernie Sanders no matter their first choice. Smart policy and a will to win the White House drives Democrats to the polls. Gains in Republican primary turnout come from a party running scared.

There is no link between primary turnout and general election turnout. As a practical matter, the Democratic nomination process has not been in doubt since Biden dropped out. Primary voter turnout numbers here are meaningless as to general election turnout numbers
March 16, 2016

Is Discussionist down?

March 15, 2016

Why Hillary Clinton’s delegate lead over Bernie Sanders is bigger than it looks

The Clinton lead over Sanders in 2016 is actually far greater than the Obama lead over Clinton in 2008 https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/03/14/why-hillary-clintons-delegate-lead-over-bernie-sanders-is-bigger-than-it-looks/

But here's the thing: Whether or not Clinton wins Ohio doesn't really matter.

It's important to remember that the Democrats, unlike the Republicans, don't allocate delegates on a winner-take-all basis. When Donald Trump won South Carolina with a plurality of the vote, he got all of the state's 50 delegates, a total that right now constitutes more than half of his lead. There are no states like that on the Democratic side. There are some variations in how the states divvy up their delegates, but they're proportionally distributed from now until the primary is over.

Which is why the 2008 daily delegate totals looked like this.


As Clinton tried to play catch-up with Barack Obama, he would get some delegates every time she did. The only times she made big gains against him was in states she won by a wide margin. But the proportional delegate system kept Obama steadily out of reach.

It's worth comparing Obama's 2008 lead in the delegates to Clinton's. Clinton, by virtue of huge margins of victory in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana, has a much bigger lead than Obama did at this point -- or than Obama did at any point. (The data below excludes superdelegates.)

Even without super delegates, Clinton has a far greater lead over Sanders compared to the lead that President Obama had over Clinton in 2008
March 15, 2016

TCRP Seeks Voter Registration Reforms

The former head of Battleground Texas voter protection group left Battleground and is now at the Texas Civil Rights Project. This motor voter lawsuit has been discussed for some time http://www.texascivilrightsproject.org/

Austin, TX – In a lawsuit filed this morning in a San Antonio federal court, the Texas Civil Rights Project (TCRP) challenged voter registration procedures at the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS). As the Complaint explains, Texas is violating the U.S. Constitution and federal law by refusing to register eligible voters who submit changes through the DPS website. TCRP and its co-counsel Waters & Kraus, LLP represent several Texas voters who have been disenfranchised by the state’s unlawful practices.

Under the National Voter Registration Act, eligible voters have a right to register to vote every time they update or renew their driver’s license with DPS. The Plaintiffs, all eligible voters, attempted to update their driver’s licenses and voter registration records through DPS’ website but the state disregarded their registration request. When the Plaintiffs tried to vote, they were not allowed to cast a regular ballot.

“I felt that my voice was taken away from me when my vote wasn’t counted,” said Totysa Watkins, an Irving health insurance representative and mother of two. “Voting has always been something I value and is a right I have instilled in my children. Texas should not be able to take that away.”

Between September 2013 and May 2015, the state recorded complaints from nearly 2,000 voters who completed an online transaction with DPS and mistakenly believed that their registration records were updated too. These voters represent a mere fraction of the total number of Texas voters injured as a result of the state’s policies. Indeed, TCRP received numerous reports of additional voters who were disenfranchised in Texas’ primary election due to voter registration problems at DPS. Until Texas reforms its registration practices, countless voters will be excluded from the democratic process every election.

“The NVRA is very clear: The state must update registration records every time a voter updates his or her driver’s license files,” stated Peter Kraus, founding partner of Waters & Kraus, LLP. “We are asking Texas to take simple, commonsense steps to modernize its voter registration procedures and comply with longstanding federal law.”

“TCRP is a champion for equality and justice. We will fight to ensure that historically disenfranchised Texans are no longer shut out of the democratic process.” Mimi Marziani, Executive Director of TCRP, added: “Our clients updated their information with DPS and should have been placed on the rolls. Texas cannot ignore voting rights because it deems them inconvenient.”
March 7, 2016

Clinton Voters Like Obama More Than Sanders Supporters Do

Nate Silver's site has some good polling on this important difference between Sanders and Clinton supporter. I admit that I think that President Obama has been an outstanding POTUS and that is one reason why I am supporting Hillary Clinton http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/voters-who-like-obama-like-clinton/

The bottom half of the table shows attitudes that were measured in the wake of the 2012 election, between November 2012 and January 2013. We see, for instance, that Clinton and Sanders supporters differ little on questions about overall government spending or targeted assistance for African-Americans. Like the Iraq War, the Affordable Care Act may divide the candidates (paywalled), but it does not seem to split their supporters. Nor do immigration attitudes or measures of prejudice against blacks or Latinos.1

But notice the Obama feeling thermometer. Even back in the aftermath of Obama’s 2012 victory, those who would become Clinton supporters in 2016 rated Obama at 0.82 on the 0-1 scale, as opposed to just 0.72 for those who would become Sanders supporters. That difference remains sizable even when looking only at non-black respondents. In recent debates with Sanders, Clinton’s embrace of Obama has been striking. But more than a tactical play for black voters, that embrace may reflect deeper differences in the two candidates’ bases of support.

And it’s not just about Obama. As the table’s final line shows, Sanders voters were markedly more likely to agree that “at present, I feel very critical of our political system,” scoring 0.66 on a scale from 0 (“strongly disagree”) to 1 (“strongly agree”). Sanders backers are notably more disaffected, a fact which might explain their reluctance to back a longtime insider like Clinton.

It is always tempting to see the current campaign in light of past ones, especially when one of the same candidates is on the ballot. But the divisions between Clinton and Sanders are not simply a reflection of those between Clinton and Obama eight years ago, with Sanders stepping into the role of Obama. Voters’ orientation toward the political establishment — in this case, Clinton and Obama — is an issue that wasn’t present in 2008. And while Edwards has left the political stage, the appeal of his economic populism lives on.

Sanders supporters and Clinton supporters have very different viewpoints on President Obama.
March 4, 2016

Clinton Wins Latino Vote Big Over Sanders In Texas

This makes me smile http://www.buzzfeed.com/adriancarrasquillo/texas-colorado-latino-clinton-sanders?utm_term=.uo6wyo05Y#.ysepwL9y1

Hillary Clinton rolled on Super Tuesday, racking up wins across the South powered by black and older voters. And in Texas, where Hispanics made up 31% of the electorate according to exit polls, she won over 70% of their vote.

Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders won the Democratic caucus in Colorado, where Latinos make up 15% of eligible voters, but entrance polls were not available.

HUD Secretary Julian Castro, often mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick by Clinton, cautioned that exit polls are not definitive, but lauded her strength in states across the country as different as Nevada, Iowa, South Carolina, and now Texas.

“It’s not surprising,” Castro told BuzzFeed News. “Hillary Clinton has had strong support in the Latino community in Texas and throughout the country for a very long time, and tonight’s results in Texas and her strong support from Latinos are one more affirmation that she appeals to diverse communities. It says a lot about her ability to win in November.”

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