Saturday, February 28, 2015

A Slow News Month Ends

Let's's really really cold, the Iowa caucuses are still almost a year away, and Hillary isn't even a candidate yet. Yep, sounds like February.

Luckily, March is arriving and already looks more interesting. Then April...and well...who knows what might happen then!

Here's one thing you can count on, whether the news is fast or slow: Hillary HQ will be there.

With your help, we'll continue to grow. So be sure to tell your friends, share links, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news and best opinion from this site and around the web.

Hillary 2016...let's do this!

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Needs of the Many Outweigh the Needs of the Few

Farewell, Leonard Nimoy. Thank you for making this world a brighter, funnier and more hopeful place.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Walker's in the Driver's Seat of the Clown Car, but He's Revving in Neutral

First the good news for Governor Walker: Huckabee's micro-mini surge from last week has apparently already subsided and Scotty has taken the lead both nationally...
PPP's newest national Republican poll finds a clear leader in the race for the first time: Scott Walker is at 25% to 18% for Ben Carson, 17% for Jeb Bush, and 10% for Mike Huckabee. Rounding out the field of contenders are Chris Christie and Ted Cruz at 5%, Rand Paul at 4%, and Rick Perry and Marco Rubio at 3%.
...and in Iowa:
An early look at likely Iowa Republican Caucus participants shows a strong conservative tilt as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker leads the pack with 25 percent, twice as high as his nearest rival, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. 
Good for Scotty I guess, but here's the bad news: Hillary Clinton is still easily beating him...and even Rick Perry does slightly better against her.
PPP's newest national poll finds Hillary Clinton leading all of her potential Republican candidates by between 7 and 10 points. She has 7 point advantages over Rand Paul (47/40), and Rick Perry and Marco Rubio (48/41). She has 8 point advantages over Ben Carson, Chris Christie, and Scott Walker all at 48/40. Her advantage over Mike Huckabee is 9 points at 50/41, and she's up 10 points each over Jeb Bush and Ted Cruz at 50/40.
"Hillary Clinton continues to be the early favorite in next year’s Presidential race with substantial leads over both the Democratic primary field and her potential Republican opponents," said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. "What’s most striking is that she’s showing real crossover support, getting as much as 20% of the Republican vote against some of the GOP hopefuls."
Looking at the competition, it's really no surprise that Walker is doing so well at this early stage. But anyone who followed the Republican nomination process in '08 and '12 knows that these things can change really fast. And despite Jeb's shockingly poor showing for a would-be frontrunner right now, he already has a lot of money and establishment backing...and the target on Walker's back is growing by the second.

We might as well sit back and enjoy it for now. I'm sure Hillary is.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Hillary in Silicon Valley: “It’s Time to Have Wage Equality Once and For All”

At a speech and Q&A in Silicon Valley yesterday, her first in over a month, Hillary Clinton gave more hints about the themes of her soon-to-be campaign:
Clinton, still using a hypothetical to describe her presidential aspirations, outlined a platform that would focus on bringing the right people together to address women's issues and economic fairness.
"We have to restore economic growth with rising wages for the vast majority of Americans, and we have to restore trust and cooperation within our political system so that we can act like the great country we are," Clinton said. 
"Wages no longer rise with productivity while CEO pay continues to go up," Clinton said, channeling the Democratic Party's left-wing. "If we want to find our balance again, we have to figure how to make this new economy work for everyone."
To achieve this, she introduced a unique and perhaps impromptu updating of Obama's famed 2004 DNC keynote message...though who knows if it will catch on:
“I’d like to bring people from right, left, red, blue, get them into a nice warm purple space where everybody’s talking, where we’re actually trying to solve problems,” Clinton said. “That would be my objective if I decide to do this.”
Clinton, a longtime leader in the fight for wage equality, also seized upon a powerful recent plea that has gone viral after been seen by millions on television:
“We all cheered at Patricia Arquette’s speech at the Oscars because she’s right,” Clinton said. “It’s time to have wage equality once and for all.”
Clinton lamented that too many Americans “feel the ground shifting under their feet.” Wages for middle-class workers have been stagnant, she said, while executive pay continues to rise.
“In so many ways, our economy still seems to be operating like it’s 1955,” Clinton said. She added, “If we want to find our balance again, we have to figure out how to make this new economy work for everyone.”
Multiple topics were discussed during the post-speech Q&A with Re/code co-executive editor Kara Swisher. On ISIL, Clinton largely backed the current efforts of President Obama:
"It’s a very hard challenge, because you can’t very well put American or Western troops in to fight this have to use, not only air force but also army soldiers from the region and particularly from Iraq. 
A lot of the right moves are being made, but this is a really complicated and long-term problem."
Hillary's entire 5-minute answer on this topic, starting at the 25-minute mark in the video below, is well worth your time. And after marveling at the assured intricacy of her answer, imagine what the foreign policy debate might look like between her and Scott "boots on the ground in Syria" Walker and Jeb "please try to forget my brother ever happened" Bush.

As our unfortunate #43 might say: Bring it on.

Discussing her infant granddaughter, she also weaved personal inspiration from her own family into what will surely be a major campaign theme:
"Here is this new life, this new hope, this new opportunity, this blessing given to us in my family," she said. 
"What kind of world is going to be there waiting for her? Is it a world of hope or fear? Is it world of possibility or shrunken, destroyed dreams? I don't know," she said. "I do know that it really matters to the life I hope she will lead, that we do everything we can do now to make sure every child is given the same opportunities."
Voters already see her as the future...and this merely hints at a message that could keep it that way until Election Day and beyond.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Monday, February 23, 2015

Flashback: That Famous 2002 Antiwar Speech

Note: This piece was originally posted by me at in April 2008 and is presented here with slight revisions. At the time, there was quite a bit of discussion comparing a couple of important events from 2002: Barack Obama's antiwar speech and Hillary Clinton's vote for the AUMF against Iraq.

We've heard quite a bit about a famous 2002 antiwar speech delivered by a certain Democratic candidate for president in 2008...and indeed the events of that day have reverberated since. However, this speech has largely been unseen or unread by both supporters and detractors alike, so let's take a closer look.

We remember those dark post-9/11 days. It was time when many conscientious Americans were being told that they should simply shut up and support George W Bush's run-up to another Iraq war, no matter the consequences. This compelling orator disagreed and said so near the beginning of the speech:
...on no account should dissent be discouraged or disparaged. It is central to our freedom and to our progress, for on more than one occasion, history has proven our great dissenters to be right.
The speech also did not shy away from the role that the U.S. played in supporting a terrible dictator, Saddam Hussein, when it suited our interests:
Unfortunately, during the 1980's, while he engaged in such horrific activity, he enjoyed the support of the American government, because he had oil and was seen as a counterweight to the Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran.
And also made clear that despite the disinformation campaign being pushed by the Bush/Cheney brigade:
...there is apparently no evidence of his involvement in the terrible events of September 11, 2001.
It should be pointed out, however, that the senator did not believe that Iraq was something we simply shouldn't worry about:
The question is how do we do our best to both defuse the real threat that Saddam Hussein poses to his people, to the region, including Israel, to the United States, to the world, and at the same time, work to maximize our international support and strengthen the United Nations?
But when it came to the idea of a unilateral attack on Iraq:
If we were to attack Iraq now, alone or with few allies, it would set a precedent that could come back to haunt us.
...this course is fraught with danger.
...a unilateral attack...on the present facts is not a good option.
The New York senator also added:
I believe international support and legitimacy are crucial.
Because bipartisan support for this resolution makes success in the United Nations more likely, and therefore, war less likely, and because a good faith effort by the United States, even if it fails, will bring more allies and legitimacy to our cause, I have concluded, after careful and serious consideration, that a vote for the resolution best serves the security of our nation.
Near the conclusion of her speech, Hillary Rodham Clinton spoke of the awesome responsibility of being in such a position:
This is a very difficult vote. This is probably the hardest decision I have ever had to make -- any vote that may lead to war should be hard -- but I cast it with conviction.


My vote is not, however, a vote for any new doctrine of preemption, or for unilateralism, or for the arrogance of American power or purpose -- all of which carry grave dangers for our nation, for the rule of international law and for the peace and security of people throughout the world. 
So it is with conviction that I support this resolution as being in the best interests of our nation. A vote for it is not a vote to rush to war; it is a vote that puts awesome responsibility in the hands of our President and we say to him - use these powers wisely and as a last resort.
Senator Clinton had witnessed the incredible devastation of terrorism and wanted to do everything in her power to protect her constituents and the United States. And yet, she also knew that diplomacy was absolutely paramount and that war should only be considered after all other options had been depleted. That much is also explicit in the speech and cannot be denied.

That she voted the way she did, only to be lied to by the Bush administration (who had no intention of letting the inspectors do their job and planned to invade Iraq no matter what), was an acknowledged mistake. But the blame for this tragedy lays squarely at the feet of the worst president in American history...not the Senator who spoke out so eloquently that war should always be "a last resort".

To read the entirety of Hillary Clinton's October 2002 Senate floor speech regarding the authorization to use force in Iraq, click here.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Clinton News Roundup: This is Really the Best They've Got?

Jeb May Not Be the Smart One After All
And how scary is that thought? Dana Milbank has more:
When he addressed the Chicago Council on Global Affairs luncheon at the Fairmont, he combined his father’s awkward oratory with his brother’s mangled syntax and malapropisms. Like his brother, he said “nucular” instead of “nuclear,” and he hunched over the lectern with both hands on it — but instead of exuding folksiness, as his brother does, he oozed discomfort.

A top priority, he explained, is “reforming a broken immigration system and turning it into an economic — a catalytic converter for sustained economic growth.”

Presumably he was reaching for “catalyst” but instead came up with an automotive emissions-control device.
It doesn't stop there.
“As we grow our presence by growing our ability to produce oil and gas,” Bush went on, “we also make it possible to lessen the dependency that Russia now has on top of Europe.”
Russia’s dependency on top of Europe? It was, in addition to being backward, a delightful echo of his brother’s belief that it is hard “to put food on your family.”
At another point, discussing NATO’s aggressive stance in the Baltics, Jeb explained that “I don’t know what the effect has been, because, you know, it’s really kind of hard to be out on the road, and I’m just a gladiator these days, so I don’t follow every little detail.” 
Asked about the weakening of nation states in the Middle East, he admitted: “I don’t have a solution. I mean, I—I—I’ve read articles, you know, about whether the 1915 kind of breakout of the Middle East and how that no longer is a viable deal.” 
Bush, eschewing teleprompter, read his speech quickly and, during the question time that followed, leaned forward in a chair, jacket buttoned and legs spread, swigging water with Marco Rubio’s gusto.
Reading this makes me as ready as ever for the Hillary-Jeb debates...if he even gets that far. This guy appears to be less ready for prime time than we thought.

A 2016 Arkansas Showdown is still a possibility.

It may seem unlikely...and these things change on a near-daily basis...but right now, Mike Huckabee is in the lead among GOP candidates nationally:
A new national poll gives a narrow edge to former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee in the race for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, with support for Mr. Huckabee jumping 10 points from a similar survey in December.
Mr. Huckabee is at 16 percent in the CNN/ORC poll, followed by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 14 percent, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker at 11 percent, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky at 10 percent, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson at 8 percent, and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 7 percent.
Huckabee also continues to show strength in Iowa, where he is bunched up but leading by 1 point...even after Scott Walker's recent big splash there. (It should also be noted that Hillary still beats him and all the others by 7-10 points in the state.)

Huck's not saddled with the surname baggage of Bush, he's been on the scene longer than Walker, and he's not as overtly crazy as Cruz, Paul or Carson.

I could see him winning the Iowa caucuses again.

Really, Rand?
This is so stupid that it's barely worth mentioning. Except that it's just so stupid.
On Saturday, presidential hopeful/bona fide troll Rand Paul made a fake Pinterest page for Hillary Clinton. And shortly thereafter, Pinterest deleted the page — because making a fake Pinterest for a female politician is not only sexist, unfunny and painfully lame, but also explicitly violates Pinterest’s Terms of Service. 
Well played, Rand Paul … well played.
And here's what it looked like:

You see, it's funny because Hillary is a woman. GET IT?!

Gotta love it: Rand Paul needlessly steps into a big pile of dumb and Hillary wins once again with her brilliant "hang back quietly in Chappaqua" strategy.

Walker the Worm Strikes Again

I just really don't like this guy and I'm not sure what else to add at this time.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

NBC News/Marist Poll: Hillary Competitive in...South Carolina?

An NBC News/Marist poll was released last weekend with more results that shouldn't surprise any regular visitor to Hillary HQ.
In Iowa, Clinton holds an eight-point advantage over Bush, 48 percent to 40 percent, and an 11-point edge over Walker, 49 percent to 38 percent. 
In New Hampshire, Clinton is up by six points over Bush (48 percent to 42 percent) and seven points over Walker (49 percent to 42 percent). 
And in the GOP-leaning state of South Carolina, Bush leads Clinton by three points, 48 percent to 45 percent. And Walker ties her at 46 percent each.
Charts via
Note the gentle framing of South Carolina as a "GOP-leaning state" to cushion the blow against the two Republican frontrunners. Perhaps I can reframe this bit of early polling news slightly more accurately:

Bush can't get out of the margin of error and Walker is breaking even with Clinton in the longtime GOP stronghold of South Carolina.

South Carolina hasn't gone Democratic since Carter in '76. Even the Clinton landslide of '96 couldn't muster a win there. So imagine for a second that this poll measured Connecticut instead...and showed Hillary just 3 points ahead of Jeb and tied with Scotty.

Then imagine the widespread "SHOCK POLL" headlines suddenly casting serious doubt on the electoral strength of Hillary Clinton and causing massive consternation among Democratic voters and donors...if not outright panic.

But because South Carolina went for the Republican candidate by about 10 points in the last two presidential elections (and even more before that), it still won't likely be a prime target for 2016, despite these surprising early numbers. However, it brings up some tantalizing possibilities about a few other typically red states where Hillary might have a better shot.

I'm looking at you Georgia, Missouri, Arizona, Indiana and...


I know, I know...but a longtime Blue Texan can dream, can't he?

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

NYT/CNN: Hillary Clinton Actively Seeking Elizabeth Warren's Counsel on Economic Policy

Guest post by Lysis

This isn't particularly surprising for anybody who follows either of these remarkable ladies in the news, but both the New York Times and CNN are reporting that former Secretary of State and potential presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton has been actively soliciting the input of senior Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

From the New York Times:
Hillary Rodham Clinton held a private, one-on-one meeting with Senator Elizabeth Warren in December at Mrs. Clinton’s Washington home, a move by the Democrats’ leading contender in 2016 to cultivate the increasingly influential senator and leader of the party’s economic populist movement. 
The two met at Whitehaven, the Clintons’ Northwest Washington home, without aides and at Mrs. Clinton’s invitation. 
Mrs. Clinton solicited policy ideas and suggestions from Ms. Warren, according to a Democrat briefed on the meeting, who called it “cordial and productive.” Mrs. Clinton, who has been seeking advice from a range of scholars, advocates and officials, did not ask Ms. Warren to consider endorsing her likely presidential candidacy. 
CNN reports that this in-person meeting is not the first time they've been in contact:
Clinton has reached out to the Massachusetts senator "several times" over the past six months, a source with knowledge of Clinton's plans told CNN on Tuesday, a sign of how important Warren's wing of the Democratic party is to the foundation of a would-be presidential bid for the former secretary of state.
The two met privately at the former secretary of state's Washington, D.C. home in December, according to the source, and have talked on the phone, as well. The New York Times first reported the December meeting on Tuesday. 
"Secretary Clinton really values Senator Warren and has reached out several times over the past six months," the source added.
In the long public life of Secretary Clinton, perception of her leftist credentials have moved back and forth, despite a record that is far more liberal than her husband, former President Bill Clinton. Working with Warren is a reminder that her private speaking engagements and marriage to a centrist icon of the party are less indicative of her policy choices than her own history as a Senator, presidential candidate, and First Lady.  From the Times:
The get-together represented a step toward relationship-building for two women who do not know each other well. And for Mrs. Clinton, it was a signal that she would prefer Ms. Warren’s counsel delivered in person, as a friendly insider, rather than on national television or in opinion articles. And for Ms. Warren, the meeting offered the opportunity to make clear what she believes are the most pressing national issues.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
That Mrs. Clinton — who is currently developing her economic platform — reached out to Ms. Warren suggests that she is aware of how much the debate over economic issues has shifted even during the relatively short time she was away from domestic politics while serving as secretary of state. 
Mrs. Clinton was often criticized by the right as a doctrinaire liberal during her husband’s presidency and, as a presidential candidate, ultimately ran as more of an economic populist than Mr. Obama did. But she is now seen by some on the left as insufficiently tough on Wall Street. That perception, denounced by allies as an unfair criticism, has stuck in part because of her husband’s policies, and because of the lucrative speaking fees she has collected from financial firms and private equity groups since she left the State Department in early 2013.
Hillary Clinton's unprecedented strength as a non-incumbent candidate provides her with the luxury of campaigning with the general election in mind before the primaries have even begun. Smartly, she appears to be taking the approach of appealing to the center and disaffected Republicans by focusing on economic populism, emphasizing what has historically made the Democrats a strong national party, without sacrificing the core progressive values on social issues that are simply non-negotiable, as they should be.

Senator Warren's strength as a leader on economic issues, coupled with her innate integrity which would never allow her to be associated with the Clinton campaign if her ideas weren't truly part of the conversation, make this potential allegiance an encouraging sign for the 2016 election, which will require a nationalization of core Democratic values to make the necessary gains in the Senate and the House for any Democratic presidency to be truly transformative beyond court appointments and executive action.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Happy Presidents Day Weekend!

A three-day weekend in the middle of a slow news month? Seems like a good time to relax a little before the craziness comes.

However, rest assured that Hillary HQ will still pass along anything newsworthy at Twitter and be sure to follow along there if you don't already.

Consider this an open thread if y'all feel like talking amongst yourselves until Tuesday!

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Clinton News Roundup: Inaugural Edition

Stefan Rousseau/PA
London mayor makes up with Hillary
I didn't know about this controversy but apparently it was a thing. 
The mayor of London had some apologising to do when he met Hillary Clinton at her office in Manhattan on Wednesday. 
Boris Johnson, who is almost as well-known in the UK for his loose lips as his messy blonde hair, conceded that it was amazing that Clinton had agreed to meet him after he had previously compared her to “a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital”.  
His comments in a 2007 article for the Daily Telegraph have overshadowed his six-day trip to Boston, New York and Washington...
If you're wondering what Hillary is up to at the moment, this video is an interesting snapshot. 

Mostly, I just love this photo.

It's Philly
We finally know where the big party is gonna be.
In a pick that melds political calculations and historical resonance, the Democratic Party on Thursday announced that it had selected Philadelphia as the site of its 2016 national convention. 
One of three finalists to host the convention, Philadelphia edged Brooklyn, N.Y., and Columbus, Ohio, for the honor. In a statement, party officials pointed to the city’s status as a cradle of American democracy as well as the logistical infrastructure to pull off a massive event in which thousands converge to celebrate the official nomination of the party’s presidential candidate. 
“In addition to their commitment to a seamless and safe convention, Philadelphia’s deep rooted place in American history provides a perfect setting for this special gathering,” said Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz of Florida, the chair of the Democratic National Committee. A contract with the city to host the event was signed Thursday morning.
This is a great choice...and Hillary HQ will be right there when history is made!
More evidence that New Hampshire is Clinton country
Continuing the theme from the previous post, here's another great poll:
Simply horrible numbers for Jeb Bush and Scott Walker in an important "swing state". Only Rand Paul gets noticeably closer, thanks to the state's well-known independent streak.

It's still not good enough to beat Hillary on Election Day...but good for him.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Clinton Leads Bush and Paul by Double Digits in New Hampshire

The first general election poll of the year from New Hampshire has arrived...and it looks like we might have another not-so-swingy "swing state" to throw onto the growing heap.
If the presidential election was between Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush, 51% of likely voters say they would vote for Clinton, 39% would vote for Bush, 2% support someone else, and 8% are undecided. At this point, members of both parties heavily support their candidate with a significant amount of independents undecided. Clinton holds an early edge over Bush among Independents, 49%-26%. 
Via 270toWin.
Rand Paul does better than Bush because of more support from independents...but it doesn't help him enough.
If Paul were the Republican nominee, 50% of likely voters say they would vote for Clinton, 40% would vote for Paul, 2% support someone else, and 8% are undecided. Paul fares better among independents than Bush as he gets 44% to Clinton’s 38%. 
New Hampshire went for Clinton, Obama and Kerry in the past several cycles, and considering their healthy habit of electing women to statewide seems like this one might be a pretty tough sell for Republicans in 2016. Their only shot here might be putting Senator Kelly Ayotte on the ticket, but that would take the focus off bigger electoral targets like Ohio and Florida.

Hmm. All this sounds pretty good, but I feel like I'm forgetting another big reason why New Hampshire will most likely be a strong state for Hillary.

Oh yeah...

Monday, February 9, 2015

Axelrod: The "Terrifying" Hillary of 2008 Would Be Hard to Beat in 2016

Here's David Axelrod, chief strategist for President Obama's 2008 campaign, telling us his thoughts about once and future presidential candidate Hillary Clinton:
I think what happened was that once she lost the Iowa caucuses, she threw caution to the wind and in 2008 I think she was a very good candidate...terrified me really... because she made visceral connections with people. 
She tended to be very cautious in 2007 when she was the prohibitive frontrunner and she threw all that away in 2008 and she really got ground level with people and connected with them around their struggles and concerns and was a very effective candidate. 
If she's that candidate in 2016, I think she's gonna be hard to beat.
He's dead on, of course, and we can only speculate about the unseen parallel universe in which the Hillary of 2008 emerged a couple of months ahead of schedule to eke out a narrow win in Iowa.

But the past is history, and those who don't learn are doomed to repeat it. Luckily, according to longtime Democratic consultant Chris Lehane, the early signs for 2016 are good:
“Based on the green shoots we are seeing from her to date, the Hillary Clinton we saw in the second half of the 2008 campaign — when she ran the table despite being mathematically eliminated — is the Hillary Clinton we are going to see in 2016.”
You know who else from 2008 that I'd like to see in 2016? David Axelrod...working for Hillary.

If he does, he'd certainly be in good company.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Bupkis is Down by 95 points!

(No one likes autoplay, but you can see the full Daily Show clip here.)

Welcome to the inaugural weekend open thread at Hillary HQ!

The comment section is all yours to discuss anything you like with fellow Clinton supporters. All topics are welcome, not just politics. I just might jump into the discussion as well!

What's happening in Hillaryland?

Friday, February 6, 2015

It's Always the Economy, Stupid

Forget the daily ups and downs, fluctuating polls and endless commentary for just a second. 

This chart tells the fundamental tale of why the Democratic Party is in a strong position to win a third presidential term next year...for the first time since 1940.

2014 was the best year for jobs since the late 1990s, and there is no sign of it slowing down so far in 2015. Or as Bloomberg colorfully headlines, this report "crushes it".
Payroll gains averaged 336,000 over the last three months, the strongest since a comparable period ended in November 1997. 
A striking aspect of the report was a revision that added 147,000 jobs to the payroll tally for the previous two months, which also incorporated adjustments back to 2010. 
Employment in November was revised up to a 423,000 gain, the most since May 2010. Private payrolls, which exclude government agencies, soared 414,000 that month, the biggest advance since September 1997. 
Job gains in January were led by retailers, construction firms and health-care companies.
This should make the winning Democratic message for 2016 crystal clear:

"President Obama rescued the country from the disaster of Bush/Cheney trickle-down economics in 2008 and we are now firmly back on our feet again. But that's not enough. In 2016, it's time to tackle the great unfinished business of giving hard working Americans a long-overdue raise with Middle Class Economics."

But surely I'm not telling the Clintons anything they don't already know.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

North Carolina: Clinton Edges Walker in New PPP Poll

A new PPP poll of North Carolina shows that the state should remain every bit as close in 2016 as it was in 2008 and 2012, if Hillary is the nominee:
Clinton polls within 2 points of all the Republicans we tested against her on the survey. She leads Scott Walker 46/44, is tied with Ben Carson at 45%, is tied with Jeb Bush as well at 44%, and would have trailed Mitt Romney 45/44. North Carolina was the second closest state in the country in each of the last two Presidential elections, and it looks like there's a decent chance that trend will continue next year.
Here's how it looks in pie chart form, via 270toWin:

Question: Is this the first Clinton vs Walker state poll outside of Wisconsin? If so, it's a bit encouraging, because she actually does best against him right now...even with the wind at his back.
PPP's newest North Carolina poll provides further evidence that Scott Walker is the momentum candidate in the Republican Presidential contest right now. Walker is tied with Ben Carson and Jeb Bush for the lead in the state at 14%, followed by Mike Huckabee at 13%. Those four constitute a clear first tier of contenders. Polling further back are Ted Cruz and Rand Paul at 6%, Chris Christie at 5%, and Rick Perry at 3%. 
The next question might be "What would the polls look like with another Democratic candidate, such as Elizabeth Warren?" A PPP poll from a couple of months ago has an answer:

Obviously, these are early polls so take them for what they're worth. But this much is certain: Hillary Clinton is the only Democratic candidate who'll start her campaign in a terrific position to keep North Carolina very close in 2016...and maybe even win it.

And if the GOP can't count on this may well be a foreshadowing of their electoral doom.


'Man, That Woman is...Stout!'

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Clinton (Mostly) Dominates GOP in New Swing State Poll

Are all these polls showing Hillary dominating the potential GOP field getting boring? Too bad...because there was another one Tuesday by Quinnipiac, this time of three key swing states.

Here's a quick summation:

In Pennsylvania, she crushes all Republicans by an incredible 15-20 points...with the exception of Chris Christie, who manages to be down by only 11 points.

In Ohio, she's up by 11-15 points on all of them except their current governor John Kasich, whom she's besting by one point at 44%-43%...but he doesn't appear to be running right now anyway.

In Florida, she's beating them all by 10-18 points (Rubio included), except for their former governor Jeb Bush, who she is also beating by a point at 44%-43%.

A few takeaways:

-Is Pennsylvania even a swing state in 2016? These are the kind of margins we'd expect in New Jersey.

-These are awful numbers for "electable establishment candidate" Jeb Bush. It even looks like his home state will be a struggle, and Ohio looks just about lost before it even begins. Though if Kasich becomes his running mate, it would help a little.

-Even If Kasich runs and somehow wins the nomination, Ohio would also be a struggle for him as well...and I can only guess that Florida would be fairly out of reach. Though again, Bush as his running mate would help.

-Wait a second...Kasich/Bush 2016? Yeah right!

-At this very early stage, a Bush/Kasich ticket seems like their only hope...but judging from these numbers, winning both Ohio and Florida seems like a long shot (running mates usually don't make a huge difference...ask Paul Ryan).

-Ohio and Florida probably won't be required for Hillary anyway, because she'll hit 270 with the Kerry states plus New Mexico, Nevada and Virginia.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

It's Almost Too Easy

There was a nasty bug being passed around among potential Republican presidential candidates that is easily avoidable and should have been eradicated a long time ago. 

First, Chris Christie got a case of #RomneyShambles in London
Christie, speaking to reporters during a three-day trip to the United Kingdom, said all four of his children have been vaccinated, but noted he thinks a parent's opinion about the issue is more important than what a public official thinks. 
“Mary Pat and I have had our children vaccinated and we think that it’s an important part of being sure we protect their health and the public health,” Christie said, according to The Washington Post. 
“I also understand that parents need to have some measure of choice in things as well, so that’s the balance that the government has to decide," Christie added.
But that was only a warm-up to the sick spectacle of Rand Paul literally holding up his finger and shushing a young female CNBC host who dared to ask him completely normal questions on a wide range of topics before mansplaining that she needed to "calm down". Ick. 

However, it was his two cents on vaccinations that blew Christie's remarks out of the water and made him the Michele Bachmann of 2016. 
“I’ve heard of many tragic cases of walking, talking normal children who wound up with profound mental disorders after vaccines.”

Meanwhile, on Twitter...
This is almost too easy.

Hillary's "hang back in Chappaqua and let the Republicans talk themselves to political death" strategy seems to be working brilliantly so far.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Clinton Would Likely Stomp Walker in Wisconsin

Here's a quick reminder to harsh the buzz of enthusiasm among Republicans who might be thinking they've found their 2016 white knight: Scott Walker most likely can't even win his home state in a presidential contest against Hillary Clinton.

There have been a couple of hypothetical Clinton vs Walker polls in Wisconsin in the past two years, after he'd been in office for years and (somehow) won two elections by that point. In other words, it was long enough for just about everyone in the state to have a pretty solid opinion of him. I'll let the graphs do the talking.

The most recent of these was released nine months ago, and it showed a seven-point lead for Hillary...which happens to be the same margin of Wisconsin victory for Obama in 2012.
There will be no Republican favorite son in Wisconsin in 2016 if Democrat Hillary Clinton runs, because she would slay Gov. Scott Walker and Rep. Paul Ryan, according to a new poll that bolsters growing calls for Clinton to get into the race. 
The Public Policy Polling survey of 1,144 registered voters gives Clinton a 50-percent to 45-percent lead over local congressman Ryan and a 51-percent to 44-percent edge over Walker, the state's governor. 
“It speaks to the strength of Hillary Clinton that she leads top potential Republican Presidential candidates like Paul Ryan and Scott Walker even in their home state,” said Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling. 
Republicans have made the state competitive in recent elections, though the last Republican presidential candidate to win Wisconsin in the general election was Ronald Reagan.
Yep, no Republican presidential candidate has won the...cough..."swing state" of Wisconsin in over thirty years. Even having Paul Ryan on Romney's ticket made no major difference last time around.

Additionally, a Marquette poll from last May found that Wisconsin voters absolutely did not want Walker to run for president...with only 27% approving of the the idea!

Of course, none of this means that Walker can't win his home state next year, but it sure looks like a pretty herculean effort will be required to turn it around. Because having some success in Republican midterm wave elections and a (highly unusual) recall is one thing...beating a Clinton in a presidential election is another.