**--Many Corollas are in fact built by UAW workers at the quirky joint-venture GM and Toyota plant in Fremont, California. That doesn't change the general point that more heavily-unionized and work-ruled GM may face more pressure to use parts from cheaper-labor countries. 8:40 P.M.
OK, forget emo! Emo is so yesterday: Visionary CNN chief Jonathan Klein basks in another triumph: He proclaimed Anderson Cooper "the anchorperson of the future" and pushed out Aaron Brown to make room for him. The only problem is that Cooper isn't attracting many viewers. [Klein never said he was the anchorperson of the present--ed There's your spin!] [ Via Drudge] 2:16 A.M.
Die Gosserdammerung, Act II: Newsweek's identification of "Nine Fingers"--a Porter Goss aide who apparently played in a controversial, contractor-linked poker game with the CIA's #3, "Dusty" Foggo--actually jibes with Larry Johnson's surprisingly pro-Goss (and poontang-inclusive!) account of Goss's departure. Johnson argues that it was a Goss aide, not Goss himself, who championed Foggo's promotion to #3.. ... P.S.: But Newsweek says "the agency's problems may only get worse, and one reason is Foggo." Huh? Isn't it clear that Foggo won't be at the agency much longer? ... 5/8 Update: Already gone. ... [link via TPM ] 1:42 P.M.
Expat Power: I've always assumed that allowing Mexican-Americans to vote in Mexican elections was a terrible idea--assimilation, divided loyalties, and all that. Bill Mundell argues it's a great idea even from a purely U.S. perspective. Mexican expats, he says, are the "natural constituency" for the sort of U.S.-style economic reforms that might transform the Mexican economy into something offering enough opportunity to actually retain Mexican workers. Unfortunately, Mundell can't identify any of the three major candidates in Mexico's upcoming election as the sort of reform party he has in mind. ... Update: A fuller discussion of this topic, on video. ... 1:05 A.M.
More Fun With Third Parties: A Rasmussen robo-poll recently showed that "a 3rd party Presidential candidate with a pro-enforcement immigration agenda would theoretically end up in a virtual tie with a generic Democrat" and trounce the generic Republican. Mystery Pollster speculated that Rasmussen's poll reflected more desire for the third party than desire for a pro-enforcement immigration policy. Now, showing responsiveness to Web commentary rare in a pollster, Rasmussen has tested MP's hypothesis by duplicating his third-party candidate poll--except this time the candidate's agenda is "government-backed universal health care." The result: The "health care" third party tied for first with the generic Republican, with the generic Democrat trailing by 4 percentage points. Says Rasmussen:
The 28% support for the third party candidate is very similar to the 30% total received in the previous survey by the pro-immigration candidate. But, while the immigration candidate drew equally from both parties, the Universal Health Care candidate cost the Democratic candidate 18 percentage points while the Republican lost just six. [Emphasis added]
That still seems like a vindication of MP's hunch. But Rasmussen argues that
Because immigration cuts across the typical partisan and ideological lines, it may have more potential to shake up political status quo than other issues.
Which makes a certain amount of sense, doesn't it? The "third party" candidate Rasmussen sketched was really a super-Democrat, fighting for the votes on the left side of the spectrum. His party would either supplant the Dems or be absorbed by them. (In the meantime, it might elect Republicans.) A pro-enforcement immigration candidate, in contrast, could seize the center and at least potentially dominate politics until a Downs-approved 50-50 equilibrium was somehow restored. ... Suggestion: To measure the specific power of the immigration enforcement issue, test it against another potential centrist issue, like deficit-reduction, or trade restriction. I bet an anti-illegal immigration third party does better than an anti-trade third party. ...
P.S.: Does Rasmussen's result mean an immigration enforcement/universal health care third party would win big? I'd vote for it! True, the number of Republicans alienated from the "immigration" party by "universal health care" might outnumber Dems attracted by that idea. But it might not--there are obviously a whole lot of Democrats attracted by universal health care. ...Update: See Thibaud's comments here. ... 12:40 A.M.