Monday, November 1, 2010

Global Review Endorsements: National

Outside my own district are a few key races Global Review should weigh in on.
  • California Ballot Questions #20 and #27: This could be the most important race of the year. Voters in the most populous state have the chance to end Gerrymandering. As California goes, so goes the nation. When Americans can be shown a map that tells the story - "Look, square districts in California, tortured snakes in your state" - they will understand how corrupt a system is in which the politicians get to pick their voters instead of the voters picking their politicians. So Californians need to Vote Yes on #20.

    But it's not that simple. Opponents of the ballot initiatives - sleazy labor unions, mainly - have fought back, hoping to confuse the electorate with an equal and opposite measure. They want to abolish the nonpartisan commission that #20 relies on! It's barefaced political trickery, and Californians need to show themselves worthy of competitive districts. Vote No on #27.
  • Delaware Senate: The storyline here is that Tea Party favorite Christine O'Donnell beat establishment liberal Mike Castle for the Republican nomination, and that O'Donnell has no chance in the general election. The second part is false: she has a better chance in the general than she had in the primary, in which she was basically unknown. But the first part is also false. Christine O'Donnell isn't so much a Tea Party candidate as just a Candidate. She's a lifelong self-promoter, and caught the tide at the flood. Global Review endorses her opponent, liberal Chris Coons (D), for two reasons. First, O'Donnell is unlikely to faithfully represent the Tea Party, the GOP, or her state. She would be an embarrassment to all three. Second, with O'Donnell as incumbent, Beau Biden, the Veep's son, would probably take the seat from her in 2014. Global Review believes dynasties are anathema to American liberties, and does not want Beau Biden running for his Daddy's seat the same way Andrew "Mario W." Cuomo is doing in NY.
  • Massachusetts House, 4th District: [An open letter to my parents] Vote for Sean Bielat over Barney Frank on Tuesday. I don't know a ton about Bielat, but I do know a lot about Frank, and in an economy and a Congress where a lot of people are losing their jobs, he deserves to lose his more than anyone else. He is the Chair of the Financial Services committee, and angrily defended Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac up to the day they collapsed, saying they posed "no risk" to the economy. They became the biggest culprits in the crash in 2008. After promising for years that federal money would never be used to bail out Fannie & Freddy, they got more money - and quicker - than anybody else.

    Then, when Frank's committee drafted financial reform legislation, it was harsh and punitive to surviving banks, even those who had not contributed to the crash, while placing no substantive restrictions at all on Fannie & Freddy. Frank has had thirty years in Washington, and his experience made him arrogant rather than experienced and closed-minded rather than savvy. In Sean Bielat's line of work, a performance that bad would have led to a dishonorable discharge or a court-martial. Give Frank a rest, and give Bielat a chance.
  • Alaska & Florida Senate: In each state, a GOP presumptive nominee was ousted in a primary challenge, and is playing to spoil. The storylines differ somewhat, but the endorsement is clear: Vote your party, not the person. Whats-her-name in Alaska got the seat from her daddy and thinks it belongs to her; Crist in Florida thinks he's the second coming, and has entertained caucusing with Democrats if that would get him elected. We can't purge megalomania from politics, but we can at least punish those who flaunt it publicly.
  • Lastly, Global Review issues a general endorsement of Tea Party-backed candidates. The Tea Party will not "take back America", despite their rhetoric, but they will provide a cohesive bloc of skeptical votes in the House. Presuming a GOP-led House for the rest of the Obama administration, the Tea Party may end up being the in-house enforcement of fiscal sensibility on the otherwise Schizo-Keynesian Republican Party. There are not enough Tea Partiers to pass any radical legislation (even good radical legislation, like restoring Federalism by repealing the 17th Amendment), so fiscally-conscious moderates have little to worry about.


Chops said...

Schizo-Keynesians are people who become Keynesians in recessions but Friedmanites in booms. That allows them to spend freely all the time!

Incidentally, undergraduate macro students who use Keynesian textbooks often end up being Schizo-Keynesians, always trying to increase government spending to stimulate the economy, never worrying about the long run ('we're all dead') or that pesky debt.

It's amazing how well poorly taught 19-year-olds resemble Congressmen!

turtle said...

I hope you're not endorsing this ridiculous idea that repealing the 17th amendment (direct election of senators) will do anything to solve our national problems.

Chops said...

I think it would. The states need a voice in Washington, and the original intent of the founders was to require the people's house and the state governments' to agree on issues.

Since the 17th Amendment passed, the Federal government has systematically shifted power to itself away from the states.