New Voter Fraud Idiocy in Pennsylvania

Tom Corbett and Carol Aichele are at it again. They've launched a page on the PA Voter site so you can report voter fraud. It's even uglier than it sounds. You can click on it here, but before you do, be warned, if you do, Tom and Carol are going to track YOU!

Notice:  This website monitors and captures ISP information.  By visiting this site, you consent to such monitoring.

Right above that warning is information about your internet connection: where you are, your IP address and your area code. 

Here's what they're looking for: 

This online election complaint form is provided for registered voters in Pennsylvania to submit a complaint to the voter’s county board of elections and/or district attorney.  The site is managed by the Pennsylvania Department of State, which oversees elections in Pennsylvania.  However, the Department of State has no authority to investigate or prosecute alleged election law violations. 

Information submitted with this complaint will be forwarded to the appropriate authorities for possible use in future investigations and/or prosecutions.

So basically, they have no fraud here, they don't expect any, they won't go after anyone if there's some information provided, but they want you to look high and low and report it. 

Shameful. 

PA Senator Responds to Corbett’s “Don’t Watch” Comment

The following piece is reprinted by permission from Daylin Leach's State Senate site:

Gov.  Tom Corbett said he would sign a proposed law to make women getting a  state-paid abortion watch a fetal ultrasound but said: “I don’t know how  you make anybody watch it, OK? Because you just have to close your  eyes. … But as long as it’s "on exterior, not interior,” he will approve  it.

By Peter L. DeCoursey
Bureau Chief
Capitolwire

HARRISBURG  (May 15) – The new Quinnipiac Poll says Pennsylvanians disapprove of a  proposal 48-42 percent to show a fetal ultrasound to women getting  state-paid abortions, but an unexpected demographic led that opposition:  men.

Women are tied on the idea, 45-45 in the new Quinnipiac Polling Institute survey, but men oppose it 51-39.

Voters with a college degree opposed it 57-35, while those without a degree are essentially tied, 45 percent for it, 44 against.

The poll surveyed 1,256 registered voters and its results carry an error margin of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.

Gov.  Tom Corbett said Tuesday he continued to support the bill, and would  sign it “as long as it’s not obtrusive,” and the ultrasound is done  externally, over the belly, not intrusively in the vagina.

“But as  long as it’s on exterior, not interior,” he will approve it, Corbett  said. The bill awaiting House action, from Rep. Kathy Rapp, R-Warren, is  silent about whether the mandated ultrasound would be external or  trans-vaginal. A bill signed by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell requires the  mandated ultrasound to be external.

Corbett was then asked if he  considered forcing women to watch it “obtrusive?” He said: “I don’t know  how you make anybody watch it, OK? Because you just have to close your  eyes” to avoid seeing it.

Sen. Daylin Leach, D-Montgomery,  responded: “I'm going to assume he meant ‘intrusive’ instead of  ‘obtrusive.’ And while I'm not a woman, I would imagine that any woman  would find a tube inserted into her vagina against her will to be  ‘intrusive.’ This, coupled with his admonition to women to just ‘close  your eyes,’ shows a breathtaking, almost inhuman, insensitivity. I mean,  oh my God.”

Reminded that Corbett said he would only sign a bill  that mandated an “exterior, not interior” ultrasound, Leach responded:  “Well, I'm also told he said he'd sign the Rapp bill, which, if you read  it, is ‘interior.’ If he now says he veto Rapp, then that's different.  But we can't let him get away with looking slightly less crazy while  signing a fully crazy bill.”

Medical groups have said that  interior ultrasounds are needed during the early term when many  abortions are performed, to see the fetus, and asked that the Rapp bill  be clarified so that like the Virginia law, it is limited to exterior  ultrasounds.

The poll showed voters opposed trans-vaginal  ultrasounds 64-23. Men opposed it 67-18 and women, 61-28. It also showed  voters favored abortion to be legal in all or most cases, 54-37.

Tim  Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac Polling Institute, said  they were not sure why men opposed the bill more than women.

I'm proud and pleased that Daylin is in the State Senate. I'm considering moving 2 miles so he can be MY  state senator. It gives me hope that there are a few (Daylin is one of 3  I can think of offhand) people in the PA Senate who are thoughtful,  conscientious and sane. Hopefully the Pennsylvania electorate will elect  more of them. I feel ashamed that I pay taxes to support a  gubernatorial administration that supports these ultrasounds, as well as  the new Voter ID law.

Santorum’s Plan To Fight For Delegate All The Way To The Convention

Politico has posted a plans from the Santorum Campaign detailing their path forward.

It is very interesting reading especially in light of the difficulty we and the rest of the media have had in projecting the delegate count on the basis of the actual vote. (See DemConWatch for the best delegate analysis I have found.)

To: Mike Biundo
From: John Patrick Yob
Sent: Saturday, March 10, 2012
Subject: Santorum Path to Delegate Victory

Rick Santorum is very well positioned to earn the delegates necessary to win the national convention despite what the Romney campaign and their official/unofficial surrogates’ fuzzy math may claim.

As a result of their inability to inspire the GOP based on message, the Romney campaign made the curious decision to lead their post-Super Tuesday campaign with the argument that the race is over, rather than touting his positive qualities as a candidate.

The effort to talk about the math was a defensive smokescreen intended to distract from the major problems the Romney campaign faces in county, district, and state conventions across the country when national convention delegates are actually elected.

The reality is simple: the Romney math doesn’t add up and he will have a very difficult time ever getting to a majority of the delegates.

The situation is only going to get worse for them and better for Rick Santorum as time passes. Simply put, time is on our side.

Strength of Candidacy
Romney has been forced to outspend the field dramatically in order to barely win in states he should have won handily (Michigan and Ohio), and losing other states by wide margins (Tennessee and Oklahoma).

Rick Santorum continues to win contests and gain national convention delegates because he has emerged as the favorite of the conservative grassroots base of the Republican Party. As a result he has wins in most caucuses. He also has won the majority of counties even in Romney states excluding moderate urban areas.

Support from Conservative Base
Romney has proven incapable of inspiring grassroots conservative support in caucuses as he has lost every caucus contest despite outspending the other candidates by many multiples.

Similarly, there are serious cracks in the Romney finance operation as the campaign finance reports show that he is incapable of inspiring grassroots donors across the country to donate to his campaign.  Instead his campaigns are funded by contributors who have already maxed out and are incapable of donating again in the primary. This explains why the SuperPAC is forced to pay for such a large proportion of their paid media.

The lack of grassroots support that plagued his caucus states operation, and plagued his small donor operation, will now plague his national delegate election operation.

Rick Santorum has excelled in caucuses and small dollar contributions and therefore will also excel at state conventions where activists are more conservative than the average primary voter.

Longer Proportional Process Favors More Conservative Candidates
I served in a similar role for John McCain 2008. At this point of the process there was a very real concern about the possibility of a more conservative candidate staying in the race and fighting us at state conventions across the country where more conservative activists determine the election of National Convention Delegates. Although John McCain was winning primaries in a fractured conservative field, he was not the favorite of grassroots conservative activists in the party. Similarly, in this race, a drawn out process favors conservative candidates such as Rick Santorum. This is a major problem for Mitt Romney, the moderate in this race.

Even more importantly, the proportional process that Romney supporters pushed through the Republican National Committee has turned out to be a major problem for the campaign. Suddenly the election of the actual delegates at county, state, and district caucuses is now more important than the primaries-regardless of what the media covers as determinative. It is difficult for any candidate to clinch the nomination in a proportional calendar without over-performing in the state conventions that elect the delegates. As a result, the state conventions will ultimately determine the outcome of this race.

Romney Frontloaded Friendly States
Romney supporters on the Republican National Committee manipulated the calendar to front-load several of the states that were favorable towards him. That was beneficial to his early lead in the delegate count, however it is problematic for him as the race continues and moves towards less friendly states. This is one of the reasons that they emphasized fuzzy math after Super Tuesday.

Race Moves towards Santorum’s Strength
The race for the nomination will soon start to move towards primaries and caucuses that are more favorable terrain for Rick Santorum. More importantly, the race will eventually move from primaries and caucuses that are often beauty contests to real county and state convention contests where actual delegates to the national convention are elected.

Anyone who knows anything about state conventions knows that the most conservative candidate has a big advantage over a moderate candidate. In many cases, this advantage is overwhelming.

Romney’s Delegate Problem
Romney has a delegate problem in that he will have a very hard time getting his moderate supporters elected as delegates in these convention systems. This was
evident in Iowa this weekend where the Romney operation collapsed, and Santorum and Paul gained.

The Real Calendar
The Real Calendar (TRC) officially kicked off this weekend in Iowa where activists gathered to begin the process of electing national convention delegates. It is clear to anyone who understands this process that a moderate candidate like Mitt Romney is going to have a difficult time winning as many delegates to the national convention in an Iowa County and State Convention system as the media calculated based on the Open Caucus system that took place in January. This system will play out in state after state, and although there will be hiccups in certain states, on average Rick Santorum will gain far more delegates than Mitt Romney through this delegate election process.

The Real Count
The count largely depends on how you calculate the delegates in states such as Iowa that have not yet elected their National Convention Delegates. For example, the RNC currently gives Santorum 0 delegates for Iowa, the media gives him 7. We believe he will end up with more than 7 delegates as the process plays out.  We also believe that Romney will receive less.

Most of the publicly available delegate counts are fundamentally flawed because none of them have taken into account that conservative grassroots activists at county and state conventions will elect more Santorum delegates than a primary or even caucus beauty contest in the same respective state would allocate.  Therefore, the Real Counts are far better than the projected counts and will continue to improve as the National Convention approaches and states elect their actual convention delegates. The Santorum campaign will keep a tally called the Real Count moving forward. It will be based on the results of both the Real Calendar and the Traditional Calendar.

Traditional Calendar
There is unlikely to be very much change in the delegate totals based on the results of Tuesday’s contests.  Regardless of the results, we anticipate this finally becoming an election between the moderate establishment candidate and the conservative grassroots candidate as we move towards Missouri and beyond.

  • March 17 — Missouri: Rick Santorum will do very well in Missouri, win a number of delegates, and have momentum heading into Illinois.
  • March 20 — Illinois: Mitt Romney might have an edge in Illinois but we feel very good about our ability to once again win the more conservative areas of the state, earn a considerable number of delegates, and maintain momentum heading into Louisiana.
  • March 24 — Louisiana Primary:
    Louisiana is going to allocate approximately half of its delegates in the Primary on
    March 24 and half of them later in a caucus process. It is likely that Santorum picks up
    considerable delegates in both of these contests.
    We assume that Newt Gingrich will become less of a factor in terms of vote totals in races after the Louisiana Primary, if not before.
  • April 3 — Wisconsin, Maryland, and DC: These primaries are winner take all. They could be the first contests that are a one-on-one between a conservative and a moderate. The emphasis that day is likely to be on Wisconsin. Most recent polling has shown Santorum to be doing quite well in the state and it is expected to be a very close contest. Not being on the ballot was not a problem or us in DC because DC Republicans would almost surely vote for the most moderate candidate anyway.
  • April 24 — New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Delaware: Rick Santorum will win a very large number of delegates on April 24 including his home state of Pennsylvania. Some analysts in the media have argued that Romney will do well in the Northeast because he is the moderate in the race — however that is not necessarily consistent with recent history in contested primaries in these five states. April 24 could be a good day for Rick Santorum.
  • May 8 — North Carolina, Indiana, and West Virginia: We believe that May 8 is the beginning of the end for Mitt Romney and the date that puts Rick Santorum on a path to the nomination. Rick Santorum will have the momentum coming out of these contests. Our research shows us that even the uncommitted delegates in West Virginia favor Santorum.
  • May 15 — Nebraska and Oregon: Rick Santorum will do well on May 15 in Nebraska and hold his own in Oregon.
  • May 22 — Kentucky and Arkansas: Rick Santorum will likely win a majority of the delegates on May 22 and gain significant momentum leading into Texas.
  • May 29 — Texas: Rick Santorum will win the Texas Primary and dramatically close the public delegate gap with Mitt Romney on May 29th.
  • June 5 — California, New Jersey, South Dakota, Montana, and New Mexico:
    The candidate who wins the most delegates on June 5 will lead the public delegate count going into the national convention. Rick Santorum will also lead the Real Count by this point.
  • June 26 — Utah: We will go out on a limb and predict that Romney will win Utah.

Conservative Majority of Delegates: Public vs. Actual Delegate Counts
There is a “Conservative Majority” of delegates emerging as county and state conventions elect their actual National Convention delegates.  This “Conservative Majority” will support Rick Santorum over a moderate-establishment Romney.

There are three reasons why the counts that are put out by the RNC and media organizations are not reflective of the real numbers:

  1. Unbound and Uncommitted Delegates elected by grassroots activists are more likely to favor Santorum than those elected by direct primary election. This represents a movement of delegates into Santorum’s tally.
  2. Bound delegates elected by grassroots activists will favor Santorum as rules allow.
    Gingrich delegates are more likely to favor Santorum.
  3. Rule Breaking states such as Florida and Arizona.

Unbound Delegates
As has been described previously, unbound delegates are much more likely to favor Rick Santorum than Mitt Romney because they are largely elected by more conservative caucus and convention systems. Therefore, this race is much, much closer than what the current media and RNC counts portray.

Bound Delegates
Bound delegates are largely elected at state conventions across the country and therefore are more conservative than an average primary voter. If the convention goes multiple ballots, it is likely that a conservative candidate like Rick Santorum will gain votes on the second and third  ballots whereas a moderate candidate like Mitt Romney will lose votes.

Gingrich Delegates
We obviously do not know how Newt Gingrich will move forward with his campaign but we are confident that whether before the convention or on the convention floor that when the time comes Newt Gingrich delegates are far more likely to vote for Rick Santorum than they are for Mitt Romney.

Majority Needed for Romney, Not for Santorum
Mitt Romney must have a majority on the first ballot in order to win the nomination because he will perform worse on subsequent ballots as grassroots conservative delegates decide to back the more conservative candidate.  Subsequently, Santorum only needs to be relatively close on the initial ballot in order to win on a later ballot as Romney’s support erodes.

Romney Difficulty in getting 50% of Remaining Delegates
Even Romney’s own counters admit that he needs to earn almost 50% of the remaining delegates in order to win the nomination. We believe this number is higher than 50% for the reasons described in this memo. Regardless, this is going to be very difficult in a three or four person race, especially as he loses delegates at state conventions such as Iowa.

Florida and Arizona
Florida and Arizona broke RNC rules both when they moved forward and also when they chose to allocate delegates. Their delegations will be challenged if seated as winner-take-all.

Conclusion
Time is on Rick Santorum’s side. He will gain delegates as this process plays out and conservatives are elected as National Convention Delegates. Despite the Romney campaign’s smokescreen, they cannot change the fact that he can’t inspire the base of the party, has a delegate problem, and has a very difficult time getting to a majority.

The delegate race is currently much closer than some would like people to believe. It will get even closer as actual national convention delegates are elected at county, district, and state conventions across the country. They represent the Conservative Majority of the Republican Party, and that is a huge problem for a moderate candidate like Mitt Romney.

Furthermore, Rick Santorum will gain the momentum in late May by winning Kentucky, Arkansas, and Texas and head into California and New Jersey with significant momentum.

At that point there will be a Conservative Majority of the delegates to the National Convention and Rick Santorum will become the presumed Republican nominee for President of the United States.

Please also read:

Governments Big and Small

Reprinted from Democratic Convention Watch.

The 2012 elections in the US are about three things that our elections usually are not about:

  1. How much hatred does the wacko right have for President Obama and how much of that hatred is strict, unadorned racism?
  2. Does the electorate want a country of the people, by the people and for the people, or a corporate state akin to an old time company town?
  3. Does the country want a union of 50 states, or does it want a bunch of independent states which share little more than geography?

Read those questions again. Think about how different they are from the "normal" issues of major elections. More often elections are about issues that affect the nation, not about what the nation should be. Think about them through the prism of what the EU is currently experiencing, and ask yourself what defines a country? What defines a union of countries?

Throw in the the mix the issues raised and answered by Marbury v Madison in 1803.

Ready?

More after the jump.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

This was the opening of Chris Matthews' comment last night:

Let me finish tonight with this. The Republican party is about to seal a Faustian deal with the devil. Every observer from left to farthest right knows what's going on here.

The Republicans, led by the angriest among them, are about to give away their partisan souls for one all-consuming political purpose: the destruction of Barack Obama. They are about to begin the nomination for president of a figure who  represents the Mephistopheles of what they preach: He is nasty, brutal, ready to fight and kill politically, a man of no discernible commitments or values – who has nothing to offer but a sharp-as-hell intellect and a wicked rapier of words. For the right price — and a presidential nomination is his — Newt is ready to jump on a dime and hit any opponent where he shows weakness.

I agree with Chris, and believe that one of the major reasons the evangelical wacko right is willing to consider Newt is NOT just because he is the anyone-but-Mitt-December-edition, but because he was a commentator on Fox for years until May. Thus, he is, to the great unwashed who view Fox as "news" someone like Walter Conkrite, Chet Huntley or David Brinkley. Someone who speaks with authority. Someone "of them" who, like Uncle Walter on 22 November 1963, shares their common experience. While I believe that anyone who meets the constitutional bar of age and citizenship can run for president, it doesn't mean they are legitimately qualified. The idea that someone like Newt who has been trying to destroy the American structure of government for decades is being considered by a single person who lived through those years is absurd on its face. But most people are stupid.

Newt is, much more than Mitt, the poster child for a corporate state. Mitt is a businessman, he's not an ideologue, he's not a politician…"running for office" is just a thing to do. When he was governor of Massachusetts, it was a low-paying gig. Something to do to see how it feels. Like yachting or dismantling a company. Newt's a smart guy, and he's a consummate insider. He knows how and why corporations are encroaching on the running of America, hell, he helped to get them there.

The Supremes are going to consider, in addition to the individual mandate, whether or not Arizona's immigration law is constitutional. (Hey! back to Marbury v Madison!) This latter case acceptance is over the objections of the Obama administration. If Arizona prevails, we cease being the country we have been since the writing of the Federalist Papers: we enter the path of separate states on the most fundamental issue of who an American is, and can be. The thing that defines a country is its people, and that should always be a countrywide decision. Remember, from the point of view of the corporations, it's better for the states to have more "power" than the Fed: it's easier to rule, say, South Dakota, than all of the U.S.

When I was in college, I undertook a double-major degree and was required to write a thesis. My topic was the relationship between governments and corporations, and the potential affects on hegemony. Back then there were many fewer multinationals then there are today. Further, it was more difficult for a multinational to exist than it is today, given the changes in logistics and technology. Still, my conclusions were that a generation out, these large companies could hold sway over smaller governments, changing those countries into corporate states, to the detriment of the citizenry. It nevercrossed my mind back then that it could happen here.

I think about this and am suddenly overcome with the knowledge that I'm going to work the election next year. I had thought about sitting it out, disappointed as I am in the things that didn't happen. But it's  become an issue notof what has led it us here, but getting out of it. It will be more important than ever to turn out voters and identify people who might end up disenfranchised early, to help them get the documentation necessary to be able to vote. Simultaneously, of course, working to end the disenfranchisement the Republican Corporation hat wrought. It will be a year of working for multiple candidates at all levels, of giving money until it hurts. I hope you'll join me: for this is the election where we can lose our country.