Monday, November 20, 2006
It's Alive: I just noticed: The embattled Incumbent Rule ** predicted the results in the hot Senate races perfectly, except for New Jersey. But New Jersey is ... the exception that proves the rule! [Why?-ed Because Senator Menendez wasn't really an incumbent--he'd only been in office a few months, having been appointed in January, 2006 to the seat vacated by now-Gov. Corzine]
**--The Incumbent Rule holds that undecided voters break almost entirely against an incumbent--meaning that if in the final pre-election polls an incumbent isn't over 50%,** he or she will lose.
P.S.: The cool-sounding Zogby Interactive polls performed as expected, which is to say very badly. The WSJ--which used those Zogby polls-- reports the grim results. Meanwhile, Pollster.com'saverages (featured on Slate) did very well. ...11:55 P.M.
Why would anyone want to gossip about Ron Burkle? He does nothing gossipworthy. Really, Hillary couldn't leave Bill in safer hands! ... [Not from alert reader J.P.S.] ...11:16 P.M.
I've now run into too many smart and connected political insiders who believe that ex.-Gov. Mark Warner didn't drop out of the presidential race solely in order to spend more time with his dad and his daughters. . ... kf supports renewed reportorial focus on this matter! ... 4:02 P.M. link
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Nancy Knows: Think Democratic congresspersons who voted for Hoyer over Murtha were protected from the wrath of Pelosi because the election was conducted by secret ballot? Not exactly. Dena Bunis of the O.C. Register reports:
Going into the election, Pelosi and her lieutenants believed the vote would be close. Pelosi was making phone calls late into Wednesday night trying to persuade members to vote for Murtha.
But the ballot was a secret one. So members who supported Hoyer but didn't want to anger Pelosi just told her what she wanted to hear.
Inside the room where the election was being held, there were boxes for members to drop their secret ballots. Pelosi and her crew watched as people voted. Some members actually brought fellow lawmakers with them when they marked their ballots so they could prove to Pelosi that they did vote for Murtha. And because the Murtha vote ended up being so small, the Pelosi forces can count almost down to the last ballot who voted for Murtha and who for Hoyer. [E.A.]
The members who told Pelosi they'd vote for Murtha and then voted the other way could be eager recruits for Tim Noah's maybe-not-so-premature campaign. ... P.S.: Doesn't this limit Pelosi's ability to replace Jane Harman with Alcee Hastings on the Intelligence Committee? If Murtha was strike one, and replacing Harman with Hastings is strike two, will Hoyer's legions feel like waiting for strike three? ... The answer, of course, is that it would be highly embarrassing to dump the first female House speaker after a minute and a half in office. That has to be one of the main pillars holding Pelosi up, no? Maybe Sirota is right! Thanks to the stunning Murtha miscalculation, Pelosi's weakness is now her biggest strength--the threat that any further defiance will force her humiliating collapse. Fragility=power. In this respect she is not unlike Nuri al-Maliki. ... [Thanks to reader b.h.] 12:09 P.M.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
TODAY IN SLATE
Forget Oculus Rift
This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.
The Congressional Republican Digging Through Scientists’ Grant Proposals
Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
Whole Foods Is Desperate for Customers to Feel Warm and Fuzzy Again
I’m 25. I Have $250.03.
My doctors want me to freeze my eggs.