Read a Pacific Northwest, liberal perspective on world, national, and local politics. From majestic Redmond, Washington - the Northwest Progressive Institute Official Blog.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

In Brief - April 05, 2008

The Washington Democratic party held its legislative district caucuses today, so that's where I was pretty much all day. If you were elected as a delegate at your precinct caucus back on February 9th, you were surely contacted by everyone from your local legislative district party organizers to members of the Obama and Clinton campaigns, reminding you to get out and caucus.

This didn't happen four years ago, but it's great that it's happening this year because it's is a test of each candidate's ability to organize and mount an effective "ground game" even in states that aren't in the news right now. LD caucus participation matters, because the precinct delegates who were elected in February held what is essentially a new vote today, generating results that may differ from the statewide precinct caucuses. So the candidate who does the better job mobilizing their precinct delegates will get an edge.

While it's too early to have state-wide results from these LD caucuses, the data points from the 48th district and from the neighboring 45th are indicative: the February 9th statewide vote went just about 60/40 for Obama vs. Clinton, whereas today's results in those two district both came out at 73/27. That's a 26 point swing for Obama in the two months since the precinct caucuses.

Results like that, if they hold up state wide, should put a stop to any arguments that Clinton's campaign has better field organization.

Around the Northwest
  • Bradley Lake Park, in Puyallup, WA, will be closed while officials look for a young black bear that has somehow made its way into the park.
  • Microsoft gives Yahoo an April 26th deadline to agree to its acquisition proposal. Microsoft is, apparently, quite serious: they're saying they'll begin hostile takeover proceedings if Yahoo doesn't willingly agree to the deal. Translation: "let us buy your company or we'll just go buy up all your stock anyway."
  • Idaho swears in its first female federal judge. Congratulations, Judge Dale!
Around the Nation
  • Conservative economic theory tends to hold that Democratic regulation is bad, because unregulated market forces are always better at maximizing benefit for everyone. So then why, when Democrats are in office, do the rich do just as well as every while lower and middle class people see such significantly greater gains versus when Republicans are in office?
  • In another sign of a tightening economy, the March unemployment rate has hit 5.1%, with 88,000 jobs taken off the books.
  • Obama delivered a moving speech yesterday on the 40th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King's death.
  • The New York Times reports on how Iraq deployments have hurt the military's ability to respond to other crises that might emerge.
  • Happy Valentine's Day, America! I try not to use too many DailyKos stories for In Brief, because frankly a lot of you reading this have probably already read them. But this one is really too serious to ignore: On February 14th, the U.S. and Canada agreed to let each other's militaries operate within each other's border in the event of a domestic civil emergency. Nice. Care to guess who gets to declare when we have a "domestic civil emergency?" Or who gets to define what constitutes one? Yeah.
Around the World
  • We tend to think of Europe and Asia as places with "old" history: churches, castles, government buildings, and even homes that are routinely hundreds of years old. Consequently, we Americans often tend to think that Europeans and Asians have a stronger sense of their own history as embodied in their architecture. But, it isn't always so.
  • Silly marketers! The folks who bring us the Abolute vodka ad campaign have ruffled feathers in both the U.S. and Mexico with an ad campaign implying that the U.S./Mexico border was better how it used to be back in the 1800s.
  • A U.K. plan to derive biofuels from sugar cane grown in Kenya is receiving criticism for the impact that converting 20,000 hectares of prime wetland to sugar cane production would have on local bird and fish species.
The Lighter Side
This Day in History
  • 1614: Let's all join together to wish Pocahontas and English colonist John Rolfe a happy 394th anniversary!
  • 1792: George Washington issues the first presidential veto in the newly minted United States.
  • 1930: Mohandas K. Gandhi strikes a blow for Indian economic freedom by marching to the ocean to make salt.

Comments:

Blogger Jeremy said...

There was no "26 point swing" for Obama. The results after Feb 9 in the 45th LD were about 71% Obama / 29% Clinton. The results after the 45th LD caucus were 73% Obama / 27% Clinton.

The 60% number you quote was for statewide, and includes many portions of the state where the race was much closer than it was in the Seattle area.

April 7, 2008 10:05 AM  

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