Kentucky

Oh look, Obama gave another speech on the economy…

President Barack Obama spent yesterday day in Ohio slamming Republicans for not backing his latest gimmick stimulus “jobs” proposal. As his backdrop, the White House used a bridge that connects Ohio (House Speaker John Boehner’s state) to Kentucky (Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s state) that isn’t large enough to handle traffic demand as an example of a project that his proposal would tackle. Well, there’s a problem…that bridge isn’t “shovel ready”:

[Obama] headed out to one today which he’s described as a “bridge that needs repair between Ohio and Kentucky that’s on one of the busiest trucking routes in North America.” It is on a busy trucking route, spanning the Ohio River between Covington, Ky., and Cincinnati.

It’s the Brent Spence Bridge. It doesn’t really need repairs. It’s got decades of good life left in its steel spans. It’s just overloaded. The bridge was built to handle 85,000 cars and trucks a day, which seemed like a lot back during construction in the Nixon era.

Today, the bridge sort of handles more than 150,000 vehicles a day with frequent jam-ups.

So, plans are not to repair or replace the Brent Spence Bridge. But to build another bridge nearby to ease the loads.

But here’s the problem, as John Merline graphically notes here, that could screw up all those envisioned photo op shots of the Democrat and the traffic:

Not One of Us - The Fall of Neoconservatism

Some months prior to Rand Paul’s primary victory in Kentucky, a familiar pair of politicians came together in support of his opponent Trey Grayson. Late endorsements by the President of 9/11, Rudy Guiliani and Dick Cheney were trotted out in an attempt to make a dent in a double digit lead that Dr. Paul had held for some months. Cesar Conda also got into the act, writing an article for the National Review the day of Cheney’s endorsement announcement. He also convened an emergency conference call and sent out a panicky email to neoconservative pundits.

These efforts had no effect whatsoever. Rand Paul not only won the primary against Grayson, but crushed his Democrat opponent in the general election.

That the effort failed is a matter of record. However, you may or may not have noticed how little this failure, achieved with the help of the two most prominent elected neoconservatives of the last decade not named Bush, has been analyzed,  much less discussed..

One of the more interesting facts about Conda’s email  was its list of recipients. A desperate cry for help, the list of neoconservative writers was a who’s who list of PNAC advisors.

Politico reported:

Goodbye Fourth Amendment

Say goodbye to the Fourth Amendment folks.  After saying a fond farewell to it in Indiana Monday, today we get to learn how it’s now almost dead on the national stage as well.  Yesterday, in the case Kentucky vs. King, the Supreme Court took a big bite out of the protections we are supposed to enjoy.

Courtesy of the Cato Institute:

In this case, the police were after a drug dealer after he fled from a controlled-buy transaction.  The dealer entered some apartment but the police were unsure of the unit number.  As the police got closer, they could smell marijuana coming from a nearby apartment.  Instead of posting an officer nearby and applying for a warrant, they decided to bang on the door, shouting “Police!”  Hearing some rustling inside, the police broke down the door so evidence could not be destroyed.  The occupants were arrested on drug charges and they later challenged the legality of the police entry and search.  (As it happens, the dealer the police were trying to capture was found in another apartment.)

The lower courts have generally frowned on what they describe as exigencies manufactured by police conduct, but the Supreme Court has now overturned those lower court precedents by a 8-1 vote.  In dissent, Justice Ginsburg asked the right question: “How ‘secure’ do our homes remain if police, armed with no warrant, can pound on doors at will and, on hearing sounds indicative of things moving, forcibly enter and search for evidence of unlawful activity?”  And the unfortunate answer to the question is, a lot less secure.

I don’t often agree with Justice Ginsburg, but this time I agree completely.

Rand Paul files for 2016 re-election bid

It looks like we can put Rand Paul’s presidential ambitions to bed as the first-term Senator from Kentucky filed for re-election this week, a race that won’t take place until 2016:

Barely into his first term, Sen. Rand Paul has already filed for reelection, signaling that he won’t run for president in 2012 but does plan to stick it out in Washington.

The Kentucky Republican filed for reelection — in the 2016 race — on March 21, just 11 weeks after he was sworn in, an unusual step for any candidate.

The Associated Press first reported on the filing, and Paul’s office did not immediately respond to POLITICO’s request for comment.

Paul, an ophthalmologist and a son of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), defeated Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson less than a year ago to win the Republican nomination for the Senate seat. In November, he beat Democratic state Attorney General Jack Conway by more than 11 percentage points.

I mean no disrespect to Sen. Paul, I respect him and am glad he won his race, but he has been a member of the Senate for all of 30 seconds. He had no business running for president anyway, and a bid could have hurt him back home.

Rand Paul’s maiden speech on the Senate floor

“As long as I sit at Henry Clay’s desk, I will remember his lifelong desire to forge agreement, but I will also keep close to my heart the principled stand of his cousin, Cassius Clay, who refused to forsake the life of any human simply to find agreement.” - Rand Paul

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) gave his maiden speech yesterday on the Senate floor where he explained that he wouldn’t be a “great compromiser” on issues, such as taxes and spending. He explained that compromise in the past, pointing to slavery, has often lead to more problems for the country.

Here’s the video (transcript here):

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Tuesday, January 25th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Rand Paul On ABC’s This Week

Senator-Elect Rand Paul was on ABC’s This Week yesterday, here’s the full interview:

A look at ads in Senate races

Below is a collection of recent ads running in competitive United States Senate races around the country. Some are positive ads, some are attack ads, but they give you an idea of what is going on in this states.

Ken Buck discusses, in one of the better ads I’ve seen this year, how Washington has heard cries for less government, but they have gone ignored:

Pat Toomey, who seems to be closing out his race well, responds to baseless attacks against him hits Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) for backing President Barack Obama’s agenda:

Nate Silver: GOP on pace to pick up six or seven Senate seats

Over at FiveThirtyEight, Nate Silver, the polling and election guru, predicts that Republicans will pick up six or seven seats in the Senate, putting them just a few seats shy of the number needed to take control of that chamber:

The Democratic majority is in increasing jeopardy in the Senate, according to the latest FiveThirtyEight forecasting model. The Democrats now have an approximately 20 percent chance of losing 10 or more seats in the Senate, according to the model, which would cost them control of the chamber unless Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, who is running for the Senate as an independent, both wins his race and decides to caucus with them.

2010 House Election

You can click on the state to view recent polling. Candidates listed in italics are incumbents, otherwise the candidate listed is in the incumbent party. The opponent listed has either been nominated or is expected to be nominated, otherwise we’ve listed the primary dates (we’ll add the nominee later).

And finally is where the seat is expected to go on November 2nd.

Keep checking this page for updates.

House of Representatives

With Republicans expected to make gains, anywhere from 25 seats to taking control of the House (40+ seats), we thought we’d put together a list of the more competitive races, so you can get an idea of who is in trouble.

Below is a list of the 92 most competitive House seats. We used Rothenberg Political Report and Real Clear Politics to determine what races should be listed.

We’ll link polling as they come available.


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