Diary

MI Morning Update: Live updates from the RNC via twitter, Ohio plan is dead

68 Days Until Election Day

August 28, 2008

MORNING UPDATE:

RNC NATIONAL CONVENTION…I arrived yesterday morning and jumped right into various meetings throughout the day.  The troops are fired up! Clearly Republicans smell blood in the water all around the country.  It was a great "boost" to my personal optimistic feelings…this is EXACTLY the kind of feeling you want coming out of a convention.

RULES COMMITTEE…OHIO PLAN DEAD…after several hours of discussion and a number of amendments…the RNC Rules Committee passed out a Presidential Selection Calendar recommendation that goes to the full committee tomorrow to basically keep the rules as they are with two changes:  moving the start date to the first Tuesday in March and formally giving New Hampshire and South Carolina a carve-out to go first without penalty.

This is a variation of the plan I supported and have talked about often since the Ohio plan was adopted.  Under the original Ohio plan, Michigan would be in a lottery to "go last" and never have an opportunity to be sooner than #22.

Under the revised plan, states would be penalized if they held delegate selection contests before the first Tuesday in March. That would allow more than a month of campaigning between the privileged early states — New Hampshire and South Carolina.

RULES COMMITTEE…OFFICERS…another major amendment was to allow "non-members" to be elected Chairman or any other officer of the RNC.  So now Chuck, who will no longer be a committee member after this convention, could be elected Chairman of the RNC…a rumor that’s been going around for months!?!

DEMOCRATS’ CONVENTION…most pundits and operatives here are shocked at what a slow start the Dem convention has had.  Off message, party in-fighting, poor use of prime time TV opportunities…it’s amazing…yet encouraging break for us…so far.

BUT REMEMER…MCCAIN STRATEGIST EXPECT 15 POINT BOUNCE FROM CONVETION…McCain Director of Strategy, Sarah Simmons said… "After naming his running-mate, Senator Joe Biden, our campaign believes Senator Obama will receive a bump in polling numbers after this week’s Democratic Convention in Denver…On Thursday, Obama will give a great speech, as has been his trademark. The press will sing his praises and remark on his historic address and Obama’s place in history. For example, The Associated Press today published an article comparing the historic nature of the addresses – a week before Obama’s speech. This coverage will be impenetrable and will undoubtedly impact the polls." 

I expect this lead to last most of the fall and fade towards Election Day.

RNC MEETING TODAY…today, the RNC as a whole will debate the rule changes and accept several reports by various committees as we finalize plans for the convention.  It will be a long day.

EMAILS…I’m sorry I’m not getting back with folks as quick as normally, but I’m not getting to my computer as often throughout the day back in my hotel room.  And my Blackberry typing isn’t as good…so be patient over the next week.

TWITTER…you can follow the action "live" as I "twitter" away during the various workings and happenings at the convention.  It’s short, sweet and sometimes maybe hard to follow…but you’ll get a good feel of the stuff I’m going through and involved in.  To follow my Twitter…go to: http://twitter.com/sanuzis. For those of you who Twitter, you can just send the following update: "follow sanuzis" and you will automatically receive my updates.

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THE REST OF THE STORY:

No further commentary today.

TODAY’S TOP STORIES

The following stories and more are available at my Articles of Interest online.

 

 

Michigan GOP Is Setting the Bar High

by Rob Bluey
August 27, 2008

Want the latest news from the GOP’s rules committee meeting in Minnesota? Your best bet is Michigan Republican Party Chairman Saul Anuzis, who posted about 40 updates today on Twitter.

Embracing Twitter was a no-brainer for Anuzis. For years the Michigan GOP chairman has bypassed the mainstream media to communicate directly with people through a personal e-mail list that has swelled to 4,000. The list includes some of the most influential politicos and reporters in Michigan as well as national bloggers and conservative leaders.

 

Effort to recall Dillon revived by new ruling
It still has chance for Nov. 4 ballot

BY DAWSON BELL
August 28, 2008

Voters in western Wayne County could decide to simultaneously recall and re-elect state House Speaker Andy Dillon in November following a federal court ruling Wednesday to reinstate the recall campaign against him.

U.S. District Judge Robert Holmes Bell, acting on a lawsuit filed by recall backers, said a Michigan law requiring recall petition circulators to be registered voters and live in the same district as the public official targeted for removal is unconstitutional.

 

Recall madness

August 27, 2008

A federal court ruling Wednesday essentially declares open season on Michigan public officials by kicking open the door to bounty hunter-style recall efforts.

Judge Robert Holmes Bell said that a longstanding state law – requiring that circulators of recall petitions be registered voters in the district where the official is being recalled – is an unconstitutional infringement on political speech.

The immediate effect is disastrous for residents of Michigan’s 17th House District, represented by Speaker Andy Dillon (D-Redford). It paves the way for a recall effort against him to make the ballot in November, leaving open the possibility that voters there might both be able to recall him and re-elect him on the same day.

 

Kilpatrick sued over $80,000 in legal fees

BY DAVID ZEMAN
August 28, 2008

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick — already in the cross-hairs of prosecutors and Michigan’s governor — now faces yet another legal battle.

Attorney William Moffitt, of Alexandria, Va., filed a lawsuit in Wayne County Circuit Court on Wednesday, accusing Kilpatrick of failing to pay roughly $80,000 in legal fees stemming from the text-message scandal.

Moffitt, a respected criminal attorney, was hired by Kilpatrick in February, shortly after the text message scandal broke. Moffitt contends that he has repeatedly requested to be paid for his work, which he does not specify, but that Kilpatrick "refused and continues, in bad faith, to refuse to pay."

 

Congress Is a Perfect Target for McCain

By KARL ROVE
August 28, 2008; Page A13

Democrats and Republicans have scripted their conventions as tightly as possible. But after delegates return home with buttons, badges and banners, the curtain will rise on a more unruly drama: the fall session of Congress. And it could affect the November election more than the conventions.

The House and Senate return to Washington Monday, Sept. 8. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid hope it will be a short session, ending on Sept. 26. That will allow members to go home and campaign, not to return until after Election Day. Good luck.

 

Giuliani warns of union vote

Ralph Z. Hallow and Sean Lengell

Republicans are aggressively courting blue-collar votes by adding a plank to their policy platform that demands workers retain the right to unionize through secret-ballot elections. One of the party’s iconic law-and-order figures warned on Wednesday that Democratic efforts to change the labor voting system would leave workers vulnerable to corruption and intimidation.

"I think that it’s just a principle of American democracy that you should be able to choose to be a member of a union or not be a member of a union, and you should be able to make that choice without anything rigged either way," former New York mayor and one-time Republican presidential candidate Rudolph W. Giuliani told The Washington Times in an interview.

"I would think that that position of Senator [Barack] Obama’s really comes about because of special interest pressure, not because of any logical analysis of what is right in the Democrat system," he said.

 

Dems ticket to head to Michigan

August 28, 2008

Democratic presidential tandem Barack Obama and Joe Biden will make a 2-day swing through Michigan as part of a bus tour to three battleground states this holiday weekend.

Democratic Party Chairman Mark Brewer said the Democratic candidates will travel to Battle Creek on Sunday for an event with state Sen. Mark Schauer, who is in a tight race against U.S. Rep. Tim Walberg, R-Tipton.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Federation of Teachers reported on its Web site that Obama will be in Detroit as part of the annual Labor Day celebration on Monday. The Obama campaign couldn’t confirm it. The Labor Day parade begins at 9:30 a.m. and ends at Hart Plaza.

 

In Denver, the End of Capitalism

By David Harsanyi

DENVER — Well, it’s no wonder that Democrats didn’t want former President Bill Clinton to speak on the economy; some delegates might have had the temerity to ask: Hey, why did we experience all that prosperity in the ’90s?

It certainly wasn’t because of populism or isolationism or more government dependency or any of the hard-left economic policies being preached nightly by speakers at the Democratic National Convention. No, it was capitalism — more of it, not less of it.

 

Biden Opens New Phase With Attack on McCain

By JOHN M. BRODER

DENVER – Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware accepted the Democratic vice-presidential nomination on Wednesday night with an ode to his middle-class upbringing and a blistering attack on Senator John McCain.

On tax policy and the war in Iraq, on health care and terrorism, on the minimum wage and on Russia, Mr. Biden said, the contrast was clear between Mr. McCain and the Democratic presidential nominee, Senator Barack Obama.

"Again and again," he said, "on the most important national security issues of our time, John McCain was wrong, and Barack Obama was proven right."

 

US, Russia anchor military ships in Georgian ports
 
Aug 27, 3:11 PM (ET)
By SERGEI GRITS and JIM HEINTZ

BATUMI, Georgia (AP) – A U.S. military ship loaded with aid docked at a southern Georgian port Wednesday, and Russia sent three missile boats to another Georgian port as the standoff escalated over a nation devastated by war with Russia.

Georgia’s government said its short war with Russia had caused $1 billion in damages, while European leaders called the Kremlin’s moves in two breakaway Georgian regions an unacceptable attempt to unilaterally redraw the map of the Caucasus region.

 

Lessons of a postmodern war
Practitioners of hard power were able to use soft power, but advocates of soft power wielded no power

JOHN O’SULLIVAN
August 27, 2008 at 9:28 AM EDT

TBILISI – How does the world look in the aftermath of the Russo-Georgian war? Some observers have interpreted this war as a sign the 19th century is back: a world of great powers fighting great games over control of natural resources.

Certainly, Russia has been fighting in part to grab control of the energy pipelines transmitting oil and gas from Central Asia to Western Europe. But the world of great powers fighting over resources never really went away. It was merely sprayed with ideology.

Nor did the course of the war seem especially 19th century. Russian or British generals waging the Great Game would have marched to Tbilisi, hanged the president, installed a reliable puppet and marched out again. In this war, the Russians were deterred from entering the Georgian capital because the 20th-century rules of international conduct forbade it (and because their pretexts for the war confined them to South Ossetia).