Re: blueveinedthrobber (Post 5199480)
Hi old friend
I'm less alarmed than many on the left. Our present position is quite a ways from where I'd like it to be but I don't share the anger some on the left feel towards this president because the office is severely limited in what might be done from there by anyone. Alterman's piece "Kabuki Democracy: Why a Progressive Presidency is Impossible, For Now" is a must-read... http://www.thenation.com/article/37165/kabuki-democracy-why-progressive-presidency-impossible-now#
I think it depends on how many states revamp their Electoral College votes between now and then. There are a number of states considering doing partial allocations based on % of the popular vote. This would help the Rs if it is done more in states with a large R population but went D because of urban centers. Places like Texas which went R but had 41% of the votes going Dem aren't considering it. The EC allocation is decided on a state-by-state basis. They could very well finagle their way into the WH in 2016 by picking and choosing which states do partial EC allocations based on the popular vote in that state.
Republicans in Virginia and a handful of other battleground states are pushing for far-reaching changes to the electoral college in an attempt to counter recent success by Democrats.
In the vast majority of states, the presidential candidate who wins receives all of that state’s electoral votes. The proposed changes would instead apportion electoral votes by congressional district, a setup far more favorable to Republicans. Under such a system in Virginia, for instance, President Obama would have claimed four of the state’s 13 electoral votes in the 2012 election, rather than all of them.
Other states considering similar changes include Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania, which share a common dynamic with Virginia: They went for Obama in the past two elections but are controlled by Republicans at the state level.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus recently voiced support for the effort, saying it is something that “a lot of states that have been consistently blue that are fully controlled red ought to be looking at.”More at Washington Post
Republicans in five states, notably Virginia, have discussed changing the way they award Electoral College votes in presidential races by apportioning them on each congressional district, rather than the state's popular vote.
The reason: Republican Mitt Romney would have won the presidency despite losing the popular vote in states where the GOP controls the legislatures: Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Florida.
But Florida, the largest swing state, won't go along with changing the Electoral College if Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford has any say (and he has a major say).
"To me, that's like saying in a football game, 'We should have only three quarters, because we were winning after three quarters and the beat us in the fourth," Weatherford, a Republican, told the Herald/Times. "I don't think we need to change the rules of the game, I think we need to get better."
In Virginia, state Republicans are going with the why-get-better? approach. They're getting a bill ready for a vote that, had it been in effect in November, would have given Obama about 30 percent of the Electoral College votes, even though he won 51 percent of the popular vote in that state. Obama only won four of the nine Virginia congressional seats because they've been drawn to favor Republicans.
Dianne Feinswine's Assault Weapons Ban is Political Suicide For Democrats in 2014 & 2016
By an overwhelming majority, Americans favor background checks for gun sales and in most cases, for sales at gun shows. The average response was 88 percent in favor of background checks, with a low of 84 percent for the Associated Press poll and a high of 92 percent in surveys from CBS and CNN.
Two other questions, asked in seven polls, were about controversial measures that will be included in proposed congressional anti-gun-violence legislation.
By an average response of 57 percent, people favored a ban on high-capacity gun clips, while 56 percent of Americans approved of a ban on assault rifles and semi-automatic weapons.
But when it comes to a perceived need for gun control versus the right to own guns, as interpreted by courts in the context of the Second Amendment, Americans seem split on the issue.
About 50 percent of people, in an average of three polls, were concerned that gun-control legislation would take weapons away from them, or believed protection from gun violence was a lesser concern than protecting their Second Amendment rights.
In addition to background checks, another idea that has widespread support is devoting more funds and attention to mental health issues. An average of 83 percent of people surveyed in four polls favored increased attention to mental health programs.
Of the 12 ideas that appeared across the grouping of nine polls, the least popular was arming teachers and school officials with guns. It only had a support rate of 41 percent.
The National Rifle Association was given a favorable rating of 48 percent in an average of five polls.
A bill to change the way Virginia awards its electoral college votes, and perhaps boost Republicans’ prospects in a state that went for Barack Obama in the last two presidential elections, appears to be headed for defeat.
Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) and two GOP senators on a crucial committee came out against the measure Friday, apparently dooming its chances of getting to the Senate floor. More
Perhaps they will, but it is a boon for Republicans that Democrats are so smugly confident of the prediction.