Election 2013: Post-mortem

With the dust still settling from Tuesday, the headlines coming from this off-year election will be meaningful for the next four years.

First, in New Jersey, Governor Chris Christie (R) breezed to re-election which everyone expected. His acceptance speech was clearly a platform to launch an eventual Presidential run as it was aimed at a national audience. If you’d like to see what Christie’s eventual 2016 campaign theme will look like, watch his full speech here.

Next, in Virginia, the Governor’s race was far closer than almost any poll had predicted. Only a couple polls showed the race within 2 points which is how it will end up after all is counted and done. Clinton fundraising guru Terry McAuliffe (D) will occupy the Governor’s mansion for the next four years which is clearly a boon for Hillary Clinton should she decide to run in 2016. In the end, Ken Cuccinelli (R) made a strong closing argument and despite a lack of support from the Republican establishment, was able to close a gap as high as 17 points in some polls. Still, it wasn’t enough to keep Virginia’s Governor seat in the Republican column.

It closing days, it was discovered that the Libertarian candidate on the ballot in Virginia was aided almost entirely by a single Obama campaign bundler from Texas to act as a spoiler against Cuccinelli. Given the 55,000 vote difference between McAuliffe and Cuccinelli, the 145,000 votes that went to Robert Sarvis (L) potentially could have swung this race to Cuccinelli. In the end, 52% of Virginia voted against McAuliffe but a 48% victory was enough to carry the day.

The race to watch will be the Virginia Attorney General race which is headed for a recount.

One more race on Tuesday that very few people have mentioned was a runoff primary for the First Congressional District in Alabama to fill the seat of a retiring incumbent. The district is heavily Republican and the winner of the runoff will most assuredly win the special election. However, the real battle in this race was between the Tea Party and the Republican establishment.

Report on the Alabama race from the New York Times:

It took a flood of campaign donations from the business community and the backing of a large part of the Republican establishment, but Bradley Byrne, a lawyer and former state senator, successfully fought off a Tea Party-supported rival on Tuesday to become the Republican candidate for a House special election here in coastal Alabama.

The runoff was the first of what is likely to be many battles to come over the direction of the party, and it proved, to the relief of many in the Republican leadership, that a strong showing by the establishment can win tough races. But it also underscored just how difficult and costly such victories may be going forward.

While Mr. Byrne disputed the story line of the party establishment versus the Tea Party, many in the business community and the Republican Party saw it as just that: the first big intraparty electoral battle since the government shutdown.

Last week, in the first of what promises to be a series of salvos against Tea Party candidates in Republican primaries, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and corporate donors from around the country weighed in heavily for Mr. Byrne. Large checks came in from Pfizer, Caterpillar, AT&T and the National Association of Home Builders; the chamber itself put nearly $200,000 into the race.

The same narrative was seen in Virginia where Ken Cuccinelli struggled to win any support from the GOP establishment given his Tea Party roots.

These races indicate a move by Republicans to cleanse the party of grassroots Tea Party activism and take back some of the control in primary races. Furthermore, when Cuccinelli won the party’s nomination at convention, the establishment did not rally to back him despite becoming the nominee.

What does this mean for 2014 and 2016? Will Tea Party candidates reconsider running if they know they might win a primary but be abandon in the general? What about grassroots activism within the GOP? What does it say that more establishment support went to Christie in New Jersey, a lock for re-election, than it did to Cuccinelli who was fighting the Clinton machine?

  • http://gravatar.com/billymalone billymalone

    So NJ ranks 42 out of 50 and you want the guy for Prez? ? ? How about someone in the top 10 for a change.?

  • Goethe Behr

    BILLY!!!!

    {Like the way they said “Norm!” on Cheers.}

  • Goethe Behr

    The way I see it, yesterday’s election was a WAR ON THE TEA PARTY.

    NEW JERSEY: As Nate noted, even Democrats contributed to Christie. Think that’s cuz they like him? Or that they like that he hugged Obama? NAH! They wanted him to win big, so that he’d be the candidate in 2016–cuz they think he’ll be easy to beat then.

    VIRGINIA: Despite McAuliffe’s weaknesses, the GOP did not help Cuccinelli. Why? They wanted him to lose–because now they can say that he “would have” won, except for that darned Tea Party spoiler. So, of course the Tea Party is “bad,” right?

    ALABAMA: This one is even more obvious. It was a runoff between two GOP candidates for a seat in a blood-red district. HUGE amounts of money went to the establishment candidate–from Pfizer, Caterpillar, the home builders, Chamber of Commerce, and the NRA, among others. Both candidates were Republican. Either would have won without trying, against the Democrat. There was no reason to spend a cent–except to make sure the Tea Party candidate lost.

    The GOP is trying to stomp out the Tea Party, so they can portray themselves as bland vanilla in 2016. Again.

    • Neville

      Goethe, in VA, Cuccinelli WAS the Tea Party candidate (or, more accurately, the candidate with Tea Party support). The end result is pretty much the same, however, as the GOP can claim that his Tea Party support turned off “real” GOP voters and caused the party to lose the Governor’s seat.

    • http://www.uspresidentialelectionnews.com Nate

      Here’s a quote I read today:

      “The Democrats are becoming the Socialist Party, the Republicans are becoming the Democratic Party, and the tea party are becoming the Republican Party.”

      Any truth there? Is this where American politics is heading?

  • Neville

    “It closing days, it was discovered that the Libertarian candidate on the ballot in Virginia was aided almost entirely by a single Obama campaign bundler from Texas to act as a spoiler against Cuccinelli. Given the 55,000 vote difference between McAuliffe and Cuccinelli, the 145,000 votes that went to Robert Sarvis (L) potentially could have swung this race to Cuccinelli. In the end, 52% of Virginia voted against McAuliffe but a 48% victory was enough to carry the day.”

    And that, boys and girls, is the way it is done. The ironic thing is that because the GOP establishment refuses to acknowledge and agree with Reagan’s insistence that libertarianism is the heart and soul of conservatism, they alienate enough true conservatives to lose elections. In this case, the Lib. candidate may have been more liberal, I haven’t read up on him, but in all likelihood if the GOP in VA had embraced the true conservative positions of the LIB party (not the whole platform), then I strongly suspect the GOP would have won.

  • Ryan

    I disagree that Sarvis spoiled Cuccinelli. He most certainly didn’t represent the Tea Party. It’s a misunderstanding of demographics.

    First off, Sarvis was strongly pro Gay Marriage. Secondly, he said wasn’t big on Austrian economics. Does that sound like a Tea Party favorite? Looking over his issues page, he’s pro environment, pro farm, pro marijuana and not big on the Death Penalty. Sounds like a left libertarian to me.

    For the record I voted for Johnson in 12 (would have voted for Ron Paul), but I voted for Cuccinelli yesterday.

    It’s possible Sarvis took more votes from McAuiliffe than Cuccinelli.

    • Goethe Behr

      Neville: Since the genuine Tea Party is a grassroots effort, I don’t think you can say they did not support the Libertarian Candidate.

      Ryan: I think people assume that a Libertarian Party candidate is on the right of a GOP candidate. And while he was for individual freedom in social issues, he seems pretty Tea Party to me:

      http://www.robertsarvis.com/issues

      Anyway, I agree with you that Sarvis was not a spoiler, as Neville pointed out. The GOP was the “spoiler.” Since McAuliffe only barely won, any real support from the GOP could have changed the outcome. But it will be THEIR argument that (a) Sarvis made a difference, and (b) that Cuccinelli was too close to the Tea Party.

      And so, going forward, I think the goal of the GOP will be to drive out the Tea Party–using the “electable” argument.

  • samreusser

    I think Nate’s quote is very appropriate!!

    • Surfisher

      samreusser — I asked you this on an old thread, but you did not respond (probably because it was a while back).

      Would you have the courtesy and address my questions below. Thank you in advance.
      ———————————————————————————————-

      I did not know that aside from the USA, also Israel and England were part of these mass surveillance programs run by the NSA! Where you aware of this before you stated your previous posts?

      Is this proper — to have foreign nations share OUR NATIONAL surveillance on all (and does this not make us look like part of the New Axis to the world — used to be Germany, Italy and Japan…is it now USA, Britain and Israel)? How would such info of telling the truth on these two Foreign Nations (Britain and Israel) being exposed as partners to US in spying on ALL, affect your thought on whether Snowden did the right thing to expose this?

      Would appreciate your response on this. Thank you.
      ———————————————————————————–

      “Edward Joseph “Ed” Snowden is an American computer specialist and former CIA employee and NSA contractor who disclosed classified details of several top secret United States, Israeli, and British government mass surveillance programs to the press. He is living in Russia under temporary political asylum and is considered a fugitive from justice by American authorities, who have charged him with espionage and theft of government property.”

      See upper right corner in the below addy:

      http://www.bing.com/search?q=snowden+white+house&form=msnwis&refig=DC4A42FFBFCB485289C7FFC7023E2A86

      • samreusser

        Surfisher – i’ll respond with a longer a litter later – it’s in the Q – The CIA/Military – MI6 – Mossad have been sharing secrets and data since before the Korean Conflict – the French screwed the pooch as soon as liberated after WWII. W.Germany joined the axis almost immediately after WWII. We all kept our deepest secrets for proprietary reasons

        • Surfisher

          samreusser — My concern is that since the NSA were exposed of spying on all American citizens (collecting all types of metadata on every single United States Citizen) and they share the spying with Britain and Israel, then what type of National Security Agency is this — that perhaps allows two Foreign Nations to spy on American citizens courtesy of our own government’s spying machine that’s now-days turned on against We The People…?

          If as of now there is a policy set that allows the NSA to share only international spying with these two foreign nations, and at some future false-flag event it is deemed “necessary” for “wold security” to share NSA files on just a few American citizens of “interest” with Britain and Israel (if this hasn’t already occurred) — wouldn’t it be a safe bet that at some future date the foreign nations of Britain and Israel will be able to spy on ALL Americans, just as the NSA does today…?!

          Your thoughts on this?

          • Goethe Behr

            Surfisher: That is an interesting angle. This is not just about spying on foreigners.

            As you point out, it’s an unprecedented conspiracy of three governments working together (during peacetime). I did hear someone say ALL governments would be spying the way we have been doing–if they had the technology and contacts.

            But here’s the new twist that you suggest:

            We have laws saying that OUR government cannot spy on our own people, BUT with this collusion, the UK or Israel could spy on American citizens and then share that info with the NSA, and that would be legal under our current internal laws.

            • samreusser

              Goethe – Reveille !!! there are so many ways it can be used to captures international crime – frame-ups & triangulation of hard to find terrorists and finally to capture past plots and forward looking plots.

            • Goethe Behr

              Sam: I think you misread my post. I have been saying that all countries spy, and it would be suicide to stop spying.

              I’m not even that surprised that we have these bonds. Britain has mostly been enslaved by America’s foreign policy for many decades. And when it comes to the Middle East, the U.S. is enslaved by Israel.

              The new concept Surfisher brought up is that if the three spy agencies work as one, then they can overcome rules against spying on their own citizens–by agreeing to spy on each other’s citizens, and then sharing the information.

            • samreusser

              I agree with both You and Surfisher – It has gone on, probably by carrier pigeon, for centuries, especially between England and Colonies / USA and as far back as probably Greece.

              I was pointing out that there are other reasons than what Surfisher pointed out and jointly figuring out our enemies status of how far along and quantities of WMD.

              I think terrorist is almost always defined with respect to the Muslim religion. It should be defined irrespective of any religion or birth of offender. The group or individual(s) should always be at the top of Interpol and Interpol should consist of various countries including the U.S. If a terrorist becomes a valid suspect, pool from the various nations to build a profile.

              There should always be a curtain at which no other nation can “spy” beyond to capture very “Top Secret(s)”.

              Spying will always exist and if some agreed upon rules are in place – better. If we are in an agreed upon multiple (a few trusted) country alliance – better

            • Surfisher

              Goethe Behr — very well put. (p.s. Sorry for being such a jerk to you — the Tess character with her constant Obama propaganda got me out of bend). My apologies to you!

              samreusser — your answer above I find hard to understand (unclear what position you have on the possibility that England and Israel (two foreign nations) will have the ability to also spy on ALL Americans…was the gist of it).

        • Surfisher

          samreusser — your answer above (November 9, 2013 at 7:47 pm) I find hard to understand (unclear what position you have on the possibility that England and Israel (two foreign nations) will have the ability to also spy on ALL Americans…was the gist of it).

          • Goethe Behr

            Surfisher: I think Sam has been pretty clear. He says he acknowledges spying as a necessary evil, which all countries participate in.

            He has said that it’s normal for allies to share–although the current “sharing” seems way over the line.

            And, I think he has said that while he doesn’t like NSA prying, that a certain amount of peeking might be necessary to avoid an attack.

            Also, he pointed out that we deceive ourselves if we only worry about Arabs, since it’s a matter of ideology, not race. After all, if they could enlist a suburban white housewife, we’d all be in trouble.

            • samreusser

              Goethe – thx for the accurate summary on previous – specifically on Surfisher’s question: from earlier “The CIA/Military – MI6 – Mossad have been sharing secrets and data since before the Korean Conflict” , and now who does whom depends only on technology.

  • Surfisher

    Nate: your “Post-mortem” is so true!

    The GOP Establishment is willing to KILL (its chances to win an election) as long as they stay in power. As a wounded animal they’ll stop at nothing to assure their survival — regardless the suffering of We the People they’ll cause by their deplorable actions. Their message is loud and clear — Stalinist-like purges of the free minded (Tea Party candidates) will be the norm.

    My fear is that in their animalistic self-preservation mode, the GOP Establishment will WILLINGLY give aid-and-comfort to the Enemy and allow the 2014 elections to be won by Democrooks…just to stay in Power of what they consider their Own Party!
    ——————————————————————————————–

    Some surprises I never thought would happen in my lifetime:

    1) Communist USSR (the world’s most dangerous military power) disintegrating into oblivion — and that happened over 20 years ago!

    2) The Free Republic of the United States of America becoming a Communist Nation — Obama is no surprise working for it (afterall he’s Kenyan born, and thus NOT a real American) , BUT the GOP Establishment helping this to transpire is a SHOCK!
    ———————————————————————————————–

    I’m said to say that I see a bad moon rising — nothing good for the American People on the horizon!

    Come 2014 we’ll lose most of our nation — and if things don’t miraculously change we’ll lose it ALL in 2016…!

  • Surfisher

    Some apodictic conclusions so far:

    1) The Democrooks Party is indivisible and strongly in support of the Kenyan-born Usurper of our White House. Their combined goal is the complete elimination of Individuals’ Freedoms (by their eventual destruction of the US Constitution) and the TOTAL Establishment of a Socialist State that watches over ALL its SUBJECTS, and penalizes their subjects (no longer free citizens under their rule) swiftly for non-obedience to them as a Big Brother Dictatorship is designed to do!

    2) The GOP Establishment is willing to play patsy with these anti-American Democrooks…just to preserve their GOP control and thus their cushy power, and nothing else! As such, the GOP Elite are even bigger traitors to our Republic!

    3) Any dissenting voices — be it by the Tea Party, the Libertarians and even the progressive Liberals — are to be squashed within the Democrooks Party and the GOP with the HELP of their CONTROLLED (bought and paid for by International Financiers, Global Banksters and the Military Industrial Complex) Main Stream Media!

    4) Unless a miracle happens — We, the Real Americans, are to be cooked and served to their platters soon!

  • Goethe Behr

    I found this this morning:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/07/us/politics/gop-weighs-limiting-clout-of-right-wing.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20131107&_r=0

    Excerpt:

    “[GOP] party leaders pushing for changes want to replace state caucuses and conventions, like the one that nominated Mr. Cuccinelli, with a more open primary system that they believe will draw a broader cross-section of Republicans and produce more MODERATE candidates.”

    and

    “He suggested that states holding open primaries be rewarded with MORE DELEGATES to the party’s national convention.”

    I think they’re overlooking a few things, such as the fact that a small number of motivated voters vote in primaries, so it will still rely on the more motivated activists. Also, Democrats can find a way to vote in a Republican primary, so a primary could elect a weaker candidate.

  • samizliz

    Christi is out for self. He refused to spend an hour to support Cuccinelli even though he had strong support and the time would not have put his election is jeopardy. He refused to share the election with a new Senator and thus cost us a potential Republican Senator. The Republican party also refused to support Cuccinelli because the Tea party supports him. Thus, between the party and Christi we lost 2 election of two (2) Republicans. If this is the way things are going to go we may as well start planning on Hillary’s return to steal from the White House.

    • Goethe Behr

      Samizliz: An excellent point.

      My guess is that Christie wanted to spend every possible moment trying to ring up a big win–so he can look like a “winner” going into 2016.

      BUT–when it became clear that Cuccinelli was coming up in the polls at the end, Christie should have run down and done some cameo campaign appearances. Then, if Cuccinelli had won, Christie could have claimed that he put him over the top.

      However, I also think that Christie is fully supportive of the establishment efforts to purge the Tea Party from the GOP–figuring, where else they gonna go? And, in that case, the establishment would not have liked if he had helped a TP-friendly gov win.

      • Surfisher

        Goethe Behr — spot on!

        “However, I also think that Christie is fully supportive of the establishment efforts to purge the Tea Party from the GOP–figuring, where else they gonna go? And, in that case, the establishment would not have liked if he had helped a TP-friendly gov win.” —- superbly stated!

    • Surfisher

      samizliz —

      Seems the GOP Establishment’s new motto is: “Screw the Nation, it’s better for us to have a smaller fiefdom, than none at all”.

      • Goethe Behr

        Surfisher: I think it’s just the opposite. They’re “dumbing down” so they don’t offend anybody. It’s more like “screw ideals. We want to be popular.”

        • Surfisher

          Goethe Behr — that too, (“Screw ideals. We want to be popular.”)

          Also, consider that the GOP Elite will be happy to stay in power, regardless how many elections the Republicans lose, since a smaller piece of the pie is better than none (should the Tea Party replace these old anti-American GOP Establishment relics)!

          Don’t know if you saw the above — so here it is once more:

          Sorry for being such a jerk to you the past few weeks — My apologies to you!

    • Surfisher

      samizliz — on the irony of your last comment…LOL.

      Thieving Hitlery missed a few choice pieces of furniture last time around….

  • Surfisher

    Twelve months to go — for the patriotic Republicans (Tea Party and Libertarians) to figure out how to defend against the upcoming purging onslaught by the GOP Elite come 2014 elections.

    Unless a successful strategy is mounted against these old relics of anti-American Neocons, 2013 will be remembered as the year that paved the road to 2014 Real Republican losses and the eventual loss of our Nation to the Final Evil that ends US all — Hitlery Clinton!

  • Surfisher

    Off topic — if I may — How pathetic has our Nation become:

    1) We have a President that STILL refuses to show his ORIGINAL Birth Certificate (which we all must do to get a job). What valid credentials did Barrack Hussein Obama show to get his job, as president…NONE! What is he hiding — being born in Kenya, thus belonging behind bars as an impostor, and not in the White House?

    2) Hillery Clinton running for President 2016 — when she should be in jail for life in a Federal prison for allowing the deaths of Americans in Benghazi?

    3) The GOP Elite betraying the original Republican Principles in order to stay in power, regardless the damage they cause to our Nation?
    ——————————————————————————————-

    What has become of our Free Republic? Have, We The People, become so complacent to allow Criminals to evade not only Justice, but to run our Nation…are we slowly but surely becoming a Banana Republic where “Justice For All” means punishing the people only, but not the rulers since they are above The Law?

    Your thoughts on these infamies would be appreciated.

  • http://uspresidentialelectionnews.com Ron Libby

    See Ronald Libby’s new Tea Party book, “Purging the Republican Party: Tea Party Campaigns and Elections” published by Lexington Books and released in November 2013.

    • Goethe Behr

      Ron: Try a hot, delicious Whopper! One hundred percent pure all-American ground beef, flame-broiled to perfection and put on a soft, rich, toasted sesame seed bun AND you can have it YOUR way–with or without lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion, mayo, ketchup, and/or mustard. It’s up to you! Drooling yet? How about adding Burger King’s all-new low-calorie but full-flavor hot, crispy, and delicious fries! Save money and make it a full meal by making it a combo meal with YOUR choice of Coke products! Drooling yet? Get it NOW at your nearest Burger King, where kids are king! (Oops. We don’t say that anymore….)