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I need this so bad.
In addition to the Knights, there are many other shirts, hats, jerseys, etc. available here.

I need this so bad.

In addition to the Knights, there are many other shirts, hats, jerseys, etc. available here.

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PPP: “Republicans lead in Texas”

According to the latest poll from Public Policy Polling.  In other news, water is wet.  

Still, the numbers put something of a damper on the hopes of TX Democrats.  Abbott has a 14 point lead over Davis (one point less than the polling in November).  The big swing has been in Davis’ favourability numbers, which are now 33/47, and may get worse as her law firm’s work gets further scrutiny.  

Both potential Republican LtGov nominees (there’s a run-off election in May) have a similar lead over the Democratic LtGov candidate Leticia Van de Putte (the numbers are actually similar to the 2010 general election results).  

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Last night I took some time to read Brig Gen Smedley Butler’s War Is A Racket.  Something which particularly struck me in this work was the description of the prize system, which I was not really aware of and am interested to learn more about.  Overall an interesting perspective, especially considering the context.

Last night I took some time to read Brig Gen Smedley Butler’s War Is A Racket.  Something which particularly struck me in this work was the description of the prize system, which I was not really aware of and am interested to learn more about.  Overall an interesting perspective, especially considering the context.

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"The existing aggregate limits may in fact encourage the movement of money away from entities subject to disclosure. Because individuals’ direct contributions are limited, would-be donors may turn to other avenues for political speech."

Majority Opinion, McCutcheon v FEC

By now everyone has had something to say about the McCutheon opinion, specifically about overturning the overall limits on contributions (which I support); however, the above is something I haven’t seen many people talk about, but which I think is a fairly important point.

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So, there we have it. Only one of my Final Four picks made it: Florida.  And of course, I’ll do this all again next year.

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Ray Hutchison is one of the many people who helped grow and build the Texas Republican Party.  He served in the Texas House from 1973 through 1977 and served as chairman of the Texas Republican Party from 1976 through 1978, when he ran for Governor (Source).

Ray Hutchison is one of the many people who helped grow and build the Texas Republican Party.  He served in the Texas House from 1973 through 1977 and served as chairman of the Texas Republican Party from 1976 through 1978, when he ran for Governor (Source).

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Texas Lege is finally getting rid of Real Player

The Texas Legislature has been using this horrible crap for what seems like an eternity.  They’ve finally ditched it and made upgrades (Source).  This comes as welcome news to all who follows the Lege. 

My reaction in gif form:

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firstbook:

How much do books really matter for kids? Turns out the answer is A LOT!

Very important

firstbook:

How much do books really matter for kids? Turns out the answer is A LOT!

Very important

(via pol102)

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Michael Li posted an interesting chart showing voter turnout in Texas since 1926:

In 1926, for example, 821,234 Texans voted in the Democratic primary -  at a time when the state had just barely over 5.4 million residents.
Contrast that to the 546,523 Texans who voted in the 2014 Democratic primary in a state that now is home to over 26 million people and more than 13.6 million registered voters.

And about 1.3 million voted in the 2014 Republican primary compared to the 821,234 voters in the 1926 primary (obviously the Republican Party wasn’t exactly a force to be reckoned with in 1926).
Overall, Texas ranks dead last in voter turnout and 47th in voter registration (Source).
There’s a lot to digest in those numbers.

Michael Li posted an interesting chart showing voter turnout in Texas since 1926:

In 1926, for example, 821,234 Texans voted in the Democratic primary -  at a time when the state had just barely over 5.4 million residents.

Contrast that to the 546,523 Texans who voted in the 2014 Democratic primary in a state that now is home to over 26 million people and more than 13.6 million registered voters.

And about 1.3 million voted in the 2014 Republican primary compared to the 821,234 voters in the 1926 primary (obviously the Republican Party wasn’t exactly a force to be reckoned with in 1926).

Overall, Texas ranks dead last in voter turnout and 47th in voter registration (Source).

There’s a lot to digest in those numbers.

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Negative Ad Complaints: TX Primary Edition

It’s like a bad recurring rash, i.e., the complaint about “negative” ads, or as I like to call them: informative.

The latest comes from Gromer Jeffers at the Dallas Morning News regarding the recent Republican primary in Senate District 16:

Huffines, part of the family that owns area car dealerships, has considerable campaign resources and has used them to drag Carona through the mud.

What’s dragging the incumbent through the mud you might ask?

He’s criticized the senator for political issues and ethical questions, saying the incumbent has used his perch in the Legislature to shepherd laws that helped his property management business.

So, bringing up information which has already been verified and discussed in the media - see here - is dragging him through the mud.  Yes, the Godfather mail piece was probably pretty cheeky, but humor and cheekiness don’t undermine the information.

If the information wasn’t factual, then perhaps there would be grounds for complaint; however, the facts of the ads were never disputed.

Then there is the well worn canard that negative advertising drives down turnout:

For Huffines, the idea is to not only aim at Carona’s support base, but to use the attacks to suppress the vote.

Actually, negative ads have no impact on turnout or a slight positive effect (see here and here).

The claim that negative ads reduce turn out is particularly egregious in this instance, since the incumbent hasn’t had a primary opponent since he was elected in 1996.  In 2012, twenty-nine thousand people voted in the SD16 primary.  This year 49,637 individuals voted.  This was more than voted in the CD 32 primary where Pete Sessions was challenged by TEA Party activist Katrina Pierson (Source).

Past posts on this topic:

Attacking Negative Ads

Do Negative Ads Make A Difference?