Friday, January 10, 2020

Nothing Of Consequence


Via the Washington Post:

A Justice Department inquiry launched more than two years ago to mollify conservatives clamoring for more investigations of Hillary Clinton has effectively ended with no tangible results, and current and former law enforcement officials said they never expected the effort to produce much of anything.

John Huber, the U.S. attorney in Utah, was tapped in November 2017 by then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions to look into concerns raised by President Trump and his allies in Congress that the FBI had not fully pursued cases of possible corruption at the Clinton Foundation and during Clinton’s time as secretary of state, when the U.S. government decided not to block the sale of a company called Uranium One.


The effective conclusion of his investigation, with no criminal charges or other known impacts, is likely to roil some in the GOP who had hoped the prosecutor would vindicate their long-held suspicions about a political rival. Trump, though, has largely shifted his focus to a different federal prosecutor tapped to do a separate, special investigation: U.S. attorney in Connecticut John Durham, who Attorney General William P. Barr assigned last year to explore the origins of the FBI’s 2016 probe into possible coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Who Needs Collusion?

Trump is insistent to the point of OCD obsession on claiming that neither he nor his campaign colluded with the Russians to win the election.  Even in the flurry of news yesterday about his cohorts Manafort and Cohen ending up clapped in irons, he still insisted that there was no collusion.

Addressing reporters ahead of a campaign rally in West Virginia, Trump sought to distance himself from the Manafort case and ignored the perilous Cohen guilty pleas altogether.

“I must tell you that Paul Manafort’s a good man,” Trump said. “Doesn’t involve me, but I still feel, you know, it’s a very sad thing that happened. This has nothing to do with Russian collusion. . . . This is a witch hunt that ends in disgrace.”

Well, yeah, no one ever really claimed that Paul Manafort was in on the Russia collusion and he wasn’t on trial for it, but by bringing it up he’s showing that he’s thinking that somehow, somewhere there is a connection.

The Mueller investigation may not be able to prove in a court of law that these outcomes had anything to do with Russia interfering with the election to insure the election of Trump in 2016.  But with what’s being revealed by Michael Cohen, they may not have to.  There’s enough dirt floating to the top of the bowl to nail Trump and his minions on other charges.

There’s this:

In a guilty plea entered in a Manhattan federal courthouse, former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen implicated Trump directly in some of his acts, saying he arranged to pay off two women to keep their stories of alleged affairs with Trump from becoming public before Election Day — in coordination with the then-candidate.

And this is just the chocolate sprinkles on top:

Cohen’s admission that he violated campaign finance laws by paying hush money to two women at Trump’s behest came in the form of a standard plea deal rather than a cooperation agreement requiring that he aid other investigations.

That raised the question of whether Cohen would cooperate, and, more centrally, what his cooperation would be worth.

One possible answer came into view the very same day, as Cohen’s attorney, Lanny Davis, suggested on television — and in an interview with The Washington Post late Tuesday — that Cohen had knowledge “of interest” to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III and that his client was “more than happy to tell the special counsel all that he knows.”

Davis told The Washington Post that Cohen’s knowledge reached beyond “the obvious possibility of a conspiracy to collude” and included also the question of Trump’s participation in a “criminal conspiracy” to hack into the emails of Democratic officials during the 2016 election.

On “The Rachel Maddow Show,” Davis, who is a veteran of the Clinton White House, said his client had “knowledge about the computer crime of hacking and whether or not Mr. Trump knew ahead of time about that crime and even cheered it on.”

As any computer-savy kid will tell you, you don’t need the Russians to hack into an e-mail server.

It also sounds like Michael Cohen, desperate to not become the Sweetheart of Cellblock C, is willing to hang Trump and anyone else he touched out there on a whole variety of charges that have nothing to do with Russia and the election.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

How To Rig An Election

Via Melissa McEwan at Shakesville, here’s a backgrounder from Britain’s Channel 4 on Cambridge Analytica, the company that turned dirty tricks in an election campaign into a profit-making venture.

Senior executives at Cambridge Analytica – the data company that credits itself with Donald Trump’s presidential victory – have been secretly filmed saying they could entrap politicians in compromising situations with bribes and Ukrainian sex workers.

In an undercover investigation by Channel 4 News, the company’s chief executive Alexander Nix said the British firm secretly campaigns in elections across the world. This includes operating through a web of shadowy front companies, or by using sub-contractors.

In one exchange, when asked about digging up material on political opponents, Mr Nix said they could “send some girls around to the candidate’s house”, adding that Ukrainian girls “are very beautiful, I find that works very well”.

In another he said: “We’ll offer a large amount of money to the candidate, to finance his campaign in exchange for land for instance, we’ll have the whole thing recorded, we’ll blank out the face of our guy and we post it on the Internet.”

Offering bribes to public officials is an offence under both the UK Bribery Act and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Cambridge Analytica operates in the UK and is registered in the United States.

The admissions were filmed at a series of meetings at London hotels over four months, between November 2017 and January 2018. An undercover reporter for Channel 4 News posed as a fixer for a wealthy client hoping to get candidates elected in Sri Lanka.

Mr Nix told our reporter: “…we’re used to operating through different vehicles, in the shadows, and I look forward to building a very long-term and secretive relationship with you.”

Along with Mr Nix, the meetings also included Mark Turnbull, the managing director of CA Political Global, and the company’s chief data officer, Dr Alex Tayler.

Video link.

Those of us of a certain age will recall that G. Gordon Liddy, the wild-eyed undercover operator of the Nixon re-election campaign in 1972, proposed the same kind of shenanigans against the Democrats and was dismissed by former Attorney General and then campaign chair John Mitchell as being too much cray-cray for him.  (Both Liddy and Mitchell did time for their parts in Watergate.)  Now it looks like you can buy it off the shelf.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

There Is Always Something

Charles P. Pierce explains how and why opposition research (“Oppo”) works and why the newest kink in the Russia investigation and the “salacious” dossier are not necessarily the news.

Look, I would prefer that Oppo not be a part of our politics, but, unfortunately, that horse left the barn at approximately the same time that our ancestors left the primordial sea. (Josh Green wrote one of the definitive pieces on modern Oppo thirteen years ago in The Atlantic.) As long as we trust our politics to human beings as failed and flawed as we are, then Oppo is going to be with us as a self-governing democratic people. And Oppo is not always destructive. Indeed, in this case, if it reveals something more about the accommodations between various Russian oligarchs and the president*, it may even be said to have been of some benefit. However, that would depend on the political utility of the Oppo, and the willingness of the elite political press to allow itself to be used along with it. At the moment, the prospects are not rosy.

Right now, as the Mueller investigation grinds on, we are seeing a determined effort on the part of the president*’s allies to change the subject—or, at least, to put the whole thing into a Both Sides context that will reduce the whole issue to easily digestible mush. In addition to the WaPo scooplet, fed to the paper by those mysterious people familiar with the situation, we have seen the reemergence of Rep. Devin Nunes, the hopelessly compromised White House bobo and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee who, in alliance with Rep. Trey Gowdy, the lopheaded Javert of Benghazi, Benghazi, BENGHAZI!, is trying to restart the whole business about the sale of uranium to Russia.

Whether or not this strategy works is completely a function of how the elite political media respond to it, and whether or not said elite political media is intimidated by the fact that 36 percent of the American people are liable to believe anything as long as they don’t have to believe that the president* is playing footsie with Vladimir Putin. This 36 percent of our fellow citizens live out their political lives listening to the same radio and TV stars who will beat this latest revelation into mulch. Again, I am not optimistic.

You didn’t really think we’d get through this without someone bringing back Her E-mails and Benghazi!, did you?

Monday, July 10, 2017

What Would You Call It?

From the New York Times:

President Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton before agreeing to meet with a Kremlin-connected Russian lawyer during the 2016 campaign, according to three advisers to the White House briefed on the meeting and two others with knowledge of it.

The meeting was also attended by his campaign chairman at the time, Paul J. Manafort, and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner. Mr. Manafort and Mr. Kushner recently disclosed the meeting, though not its content, in confidential government documents described to The New York Times.

The Times reported the existence of the meeting on Saturday. But in subsequent interviews, the advisers and others revealed the motivation behind it.

The meeting — at Trump Tower on June 9, 2016, two weeks after Donald J. Trumpclinched the Republican nomination — points to the central question in federal investigations of the Kremlin’s meddling in the presidential election: whether the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. The accounts of the meeting represent the first public indication that at least some in the campaign were willing to accept Russian help.

While President Trump has been dogged by revelations of undisclosed meetings between his associates and the Russians, the episode at Trump Tower is the first such confirmed private meeting involving his inner circle during the campaign — as well as the first one known to have included his eldest son. It came at an inflection point in the campaign, when Donald Trump Jr., who served as an adviser and a surrogate, was ascendant and Mr. Manafort was consolidating power.

It is unclear whether the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, actually produced the promised compromising information about Mrs. Clinton. But the people interviewed by The Times about the meeting said the expectation was that she would do so.

The short version of this is that the Trump people set up this meeting with the Russian based on the promise that they would get dirt on Hillary Clinton, that the story itself was confirmed by people in the White House, and that despite all the denials up to now about collusion with the Russians on the campaign, they were at least interested in looking into it.  It’s also telling that Trump Jr. made a point of saying that his father knew nothing about the meeting.  If the meeting turned out to be a nothing-burger, as he now claims it was, then why is he making the point that Trump Sr. didn’t know about it?  Even with its most innocent interpretation — hey, this crazy Russian lawyer promised us the moon and we got bupkus — doesn’t sound like something you need to insulate him from unless you’re aware of the fact of how it might look if it got out.

It doesn’t really matter if nothing came of this meeting or if Ms. Veselnitskaya was just blowing smoke up their asses or even if they thought she was some kind of whack-job.  The fact that they took the meeting at all no matter what tells you a lot, including what the Trump people were willing to do to win the election.

So to answer the question, I’d call it treasonable.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Russian Hacking and Reality Winner

There are several layers to this story.  First, The Intercept reports via a leaked document from the NSA that Russian military intelligence launched a cyberattack against a U.S. voting software supplier.

The top-secret National Security Agency document, which was provided anonymously to The Intercept and independently authenticated, analyzes intelligence very recently acquired by the agency about a months-long Russian intelligence cyber effort against elements of the U.S. election and voting infrastructure. The report, dated May 5, 2017, is the most detailed U.S. government account of Russian interference in the election that has yet come to light.


This NSA summary judgment is sharply at odds with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s denial last week that Russia had interfered in foreign elections: “We never engaged in that on a state level, and have no intention of doing so.” Putin, who had previously issued blanket denials that any such Russian meddling occurred, for the first time floated the possibility that freelance Russian hackers with “patriotic leanings” may have been responsible. The NSA report, on the contrary, displays no doubt that the cyber assault was carried out by the GRU.

The NSA analysis does not draw conclusions about whether the interference had any effect on the election’s outcome and concedes that much remains unknown about the extent of the hackers’ accomplishments. However, the report raises the possibility that Russian hacking may have breached at least some elements of the voting system, with disconcertingly uncertain results.

The second part of this story is that the person who leaked the documents to The Intercept has been caught and arrested.  She is a 25-year-old employee of an NSA contractor in Georgia.  Her name is Reality Winner (a name straight out of an 18th century British comedy).  Via the Department of Justice:

Winner is a contractor with Pluribus International Corporation assigned to a U.S. government agency facility in Georgia. She has been employed at the facility since on or about February 13, and has held a Top Secret clearance during that time. On or about May 9, Winner printed and improperly removed classified intelligence reporting, which contained classified national defense information from an intelligence community agency, and unlawfully retained it. Approximately a few days later, Winner unlawfully transmitted by mail the intelligence reporting to an online news outlet.

Once investigative efforts identified Winner as a suspect, the FBI obtained and executed a search warrant at her residence. According to the complaint, Winner agreed to talk with agents during the execution of the warrant. During that conversation, Winner admitted intentionally identifying and printing the classified intelligence reporting at issue despite not having a “need to know,” and with knowledge that the intelligence reporting was classified. Winner further admitted removing the classified intelligence reporting from her office space, retaining it, and mailing it from Augusta, Georgia, to the news outlet, which she knew was not authorized to receive or possess the documents.

The fact that the FBI was able to arrest Ms. Winner in such a short time tells us that the story about the Russian hacking must be skating very close to the truth or else they wouldn’t have been in such a hurry to catch the leaker.  (Also, they lucked into having a leaker who wasn’t really good at it.)

It also makes you wonder if this was just an isolated incident or part of a pattern of hacking and that there’s a lot more out there that the NSA is keeping under wraps.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

High-Speed Pileup

The travails of the Trump administration are starting to pick up speed and ferocity.

First up, it appears that the statement issued by then-FBI Director James Comey last July about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s e-mail was in part prompted by a fake e-mail slipped into the mix by the Russians.

In the midst of the 2016 presidential primary season, the FBI received what was described as a Russian intelligence document claiming a tacit understanding between the Clinton campaign and the Justice Department over the inquiry into whether she intentionally revealed classified information through her use of a private email server.

The Russian document cited a supposed email describing how then-Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch had privately assured someone in the Clinton campaign that the email investigation would not push too deeply into the matter. If true, the revelation of such an understanding would have undermined the integrity of the FBI’s investigation.

Current and former officials have said that Comey relied on the document in making his July decision to announce on his own, without Justice Department involvement, that the investigation was over. That public announcement — in which he criticized Clinton and made extensive comments about the evidence — set in motion a chain of other FBI moves that Democrats now say helped Trump win the presidential election.

But according to the FBI’s own assessment, the document was bad intelligence — and according to people familiar with its contents, possibly even a fake sent to confuse the bureau. The Americans mentioned in the Russian document insist they do not know each other, do not speak to each other and never had any conversations remotely like the ones described in the document. Investigators have long doubted its veracity, and by August the FBI had concluded it was unreliable.

So the FBI was punked by the Russians.  That was all part of a larger plan.  As the New York Times reports, they were playing us like a Stradivarius.

American spies collected information last summer revealing that senior Russian intelligence and political officials were discussing how to exert influence over Donald J. Trump through his advisers, according to three current and former American officials familiar with the intelligence.

The conversations focused on Paul Manafort, the Trump campaign chairman at the time, and Michael T. Flynn, a retired general who was advising Mr. Trump, the officials said. Both men had indirect ties to Russian officials, who appeared confident that each could be used to help shape Mr. Trump’s opinions on Russia.

Some Russians boasted about how well they knew Mr. Flynn. Others discussed leveraging their ties to Viktor F. Yanukovych, the deposed president of Ukraine living in exile in Russia, who at one time had worked closely with Mr. Manafort.

The intelligence was among the clues — which also included information about direct communications between Mr. Trump’s advisers and Russian officials — that American officials received last year as they began investigating Russian attempts to disrupt the election and whether any of Mr. Trump’s associates were assisting Moscow in the effort. Details of the conversations, some of which have not been previously reported, add to an increasing understanding of the alarm inside the American government last year about the Russian disruption campaign.

The information collected last summer was considered credible enough for intelligence agencies to pass to the F.B.I., which during that period opened a counterintelligence investigation that is continuing. It is unclear, however, whether Russian officials actually tried to directly influence Mr. Manafort and Mr. Flynn. Both have denied any collusion with the Russian government on the campaign to disrupt the election.

Anything else?  Well, let’s see what the Attorney General was up to…

Attorney General Jeff Sessions failed to disclose meetings with Russian officials when he applied for security clearance because he was told not to do so by advisers and the F.B.I., a Justice Department spokesman said Wednesday.

Mr. Sessions met with Sergey I. Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to the United States, at least twice in 2016. But asked on an official government form to note any contact he or family members had with foreign governments or their representatives over the past seven years, Mr. Sessions did not include his encounters with Mr. Kislyak. It is a federal crime to make false statements or withhold relevant information on the background check form.

“As a United States senator, the attorney general met hundreds — if not thousands — of foreign dignitaries and their staff,” Ian Prior, a spokesman for the Justice Department, said in a statement. “The attorney general’s staff consulted with those familiar with the process, as well as the F.B.I. investigator handling the background check, and was instructed not to list meetings with foreign dignitaries and their staff connected with his Senate activities.”

Mr. Sessions filled out two such forms, Mr. Prior said, one last July, as he was first formally vetted by the Trump campaign, and one after the election in November.

The news, first reported by CNN, renewed questions about Mr. Sessions and the Russia issue. Mr. Sessions, who represented Alabama until his confirmation as the nation’s top law enforcement officer this year, was the first United States senator to endorse Mr. Trump, backing him in February 2016.

What I find most amazing is the speed at which all of this is happening.  It took over two years for Watergate to unravel, and back in those innocent times we thought that was pretty quick.  But this whole Trump administration experiment is running out faster than a mini-series on HBO (which I am sure is already being planned out).

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Nothing To See Here

It turns out that the search warrant for Hillary Clinton’s e-mails was based on nothing.

The FBI told a federal judge that it needed to search a computer to resume its investigation of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server because agents had found correspondence on the device between Clinton and top aide Huma Abedin — though they did not have any inkling what was being discussed, according to newly unsealed court documents.

The documents, made public Tuesday after a Los Angeles lawyer sued for their release, reinforce the impression that when the bureau revealed less than two weeks before the election that agents were again investigating Clinton, they had no new evidence of actual wrongdoing. The FBI’s revelation upended the presidential campaign, and to this day, Clinton and her supporters say it is at least partly to blame for her surprising loss to Donald Trump.


David E. Kendall, Clinton’s lawyer, said in a statement the affidavit highlighted the “extraordinary impropriety” of Comey revealing that the investigation had resumed, which Kendall alleged “produced devastating but predictable damage politically and which was both legally unauthorized and factually unnecessary.”

“The affidavit concedes that the FBI had no basis to conclude whether these e-mails were even pertinent to that closed investigation, were significant, or whether they had, in fact, already been reviewed prior to the closing of the investigation,” Kendall said. “What does become unassailably clear, however, is that as the sole basis for this warrant, the FBI put forward the same evidence the Bureau concluded in July was not sufficient to bring a case — the affidavit offered no additional evidence to support any different conclusion.”

The Director of the FBI basically upended the election based on no evidence or probable cause.

So yes, the election was rigged stolen.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Monday, December 5, 2016

Monday, November 28, 2016

It Won’t Happen

Via TPM:

His inauguration less than eight weeks away, President-elect Donald Trump was confronted by new developments Saturday in recount efforts in three states pivotal to his Nov. 8 victory, even as he worked to fill foreign policy and national defense jobs in his incoming administration.


Clinton leads the national popular vote by close to 2 million votes, but Trump won 290 electoral votes to Clinton’s 232, with Michigan still too close to call. It takes 270 to win the presidency.

Wisconsin officials are moving forward with the first presidential recount in state history following Stein’s formal request. Stein, who drew 1 percent of the vote nationally, is raising millions of dollars to pay for the effort.

“Because we had not uncovered any actionable evidence of hacking or outside attempts to alter the voting technology, we had not planned to exercise this option ourselves,” Clinton campaign attorney Marc Elias wrote Saturday in blog post. “But now that a recount has been initiated in Wisconsin, we intend to participate in order to ensure the process proceeds in a manner that is fair to all sides.”

As much as I would like to have seen the election go to Hillary Clinton, this recount effort is doomed to failure even if the outcome is narrowed or even changed.

Say the improbable miracle happens and Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania flip to Clinton and she does have enough electoral votes.  The response from the Republicans would be apoplectic and it would be challenged with no end in sight in court.  And even if she finally wins all the battles in court, she would still face a Republican Senate and House that would not be in any mood to accept her.  If you think we’ve had gridlock under Barack Obama, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

I realize that it’s a Hollywood kind of ending that after all the drama of the campaign this comes out as a victory for Hillary Clinton, but this is reality, and if you gave money to Dr. Jill Stein to mount the recount, I hope it wasn’t your last dime.  You’re going to need it.

Short Takes

Trump says he would have won the popular vote if millions hadn’t voted “illegally.”

Bernie Sanders tells GOP to can it about the recount objections.

Gun sales to blacks, minorities soar after Trump’s election.

South Korean leader digs in amid calls for impeachment.

R.I.P. Ron Glass, 71, Detective Harris on Barney Miller; Florence Henderson, Mrs. Brady of The Brady Bunch.

Monday, November 14, 2016

What’s Next

Well, I’m back.  I needed some time to gather my thoughts about the election and what it means for us as a people, as a country, and for the world.

To say I was disappointed would be stating the obvious; disappointed on levels beyond a political loss.  I’m disappointed that this country chose to take the path that it did, and chose it not out of considered long-term consequences but out of a knee-jerk, lizard-brain reaction to fear and loathing.  I’m disappointed that more people that I agree with politically and morally chose to see their opponents in stark contrast to themselves rather than people frightened by fables and fear of the unknown that we could reach out to.  We missed a lot of opportunities to bring comfort and security to them even if they didn’t act like they wanted it.  We said we wanted to listen, but we only heard the outbursts, not the insecurities that makes people vulnerable to predators promising easy answers and nostrums in ten words or less.  And despite the fact that our economy is improving, crime rates are falling, our children are learning, even our defenses are stronger, we allowed them to tell us the opposite and they believed it because for all the optimism that we say is part of human nature — if not, we’d eat our young — it is easier to believe in the bad things and demand simple solutions than it is to acknowledge the good and build upon it.

So, what’s next?  What do we do now?  I’ll get to that, but I can assure you of some things I won’t do.

I won’t deny the results of the election and go around with banners flying proclaiming #NotMyPresident or signing a petition demanding the Electoral College elect Hillary Clinton anyway.  I will not join in the current anti-Trump protests on the street.  That doesn’t preclude other protests in the future; just those fits of rage, especially the ones with property damage.  Those actions are tantrums, not progress, and when people who objected to the election of Barack Obama said the same thing, we rightfully scorned them.  I won’t even argue that just because Hillary Clinton won more popular votes than Mr. Trump she was somehow cheated out of the election.  This is not the first time in our history that it has happened and it won’t be the last.  It does not advance our cause by grasping at straws.  We are supposed to be the grown-ups.

I will not call Mr. Trump by silly and insulting names.  I didn’t do it with George W. Bush or any other president since I’ve had this blog, and all it does is perpetuate the perception that we’re juvenile and cannot be trusted to act like adults.  All it does is prove that you have lost the argument and are lashing out.

Here’s what we will do: we stand up and fight back.  We work at every level to elect people who are progressives and get our policies enacted into law starting at the city council and school board and work our way up.  That’s how the right wing and the evangelicals did it starting forty years ago and look where it’s got them: a lock on state legislatures from coast to coast and a majority of governors.  They’re the ones who control the districts for Congress and the next redistricting will come about after the next census in 2020.  We have to have our people in place by then.

We stand up to bullying and bullshit and push back.  If the Republicans could govern by refusing to consider anything proposed by a Democratic president, then it’s time to bring out the gander sauce and let them have a taste.  Yes, they’re in the majority, but at least we will be heard and our principles are not defeated by being outvoted.  That does not mean that we will not consider compromising on policies where there is common ground, but it will not be capitulation.  If we go down, we go down with our principles intact.

We will use every legal means we can to bear witness to our beliefs and we will not be moved, intimidated, or oppressed for fighting back.  We will remind everyone at every turn that there are those who not only oppose what may come, but we will offer better answers.  We can’t just complain and snivel about what’s wrong; we have to have solutions.

It’s been a tough week.  It’s going to be a tough four years, and we should do everything we can to make sure it is only four years.  Not by hoping Donald Trump fails, but by making our country realize that his policies and views of America are dark, dangerous, and that there’s more to running a country than running for office.  We have been down for the count before: 1972, 1984, 1988, but we’ve always come back.  And we will again… assuming there’s a country to come back for.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Now We Wait

The polls close in Florida at 7:00 p.m., but the state has two time zones, so there won’t be any official results reported until after 8:00 p.m. ET.

I will be back updating this post as the night goes on until the presidential race is called or until I fall asleep.  Until then, I’m catching up on “The Crown” on Netflix.

8:12 pm: Marco Rubio re-elected in Florida.  Gee, Patrick Murphy might have had a chance if Florida had a Democratic party.  Tammy Duckworth (D) beats incumbent Mark Kirk (R) in the Illinois Senate race, so that’s a pickup for the Democrats.

9:21 pm: It’s looking like this is going to be tighter than the oracles said.  This will be a long night.

This Is It

I’ve got nothing more to say about the campaign.  Now it’s your turn.

There are only two requirements:

  1. You must be registered.
  2. You must go to vote at your correct location.

If you’re not registered, check and see if your state allows same-day registration.  If not, then go back to bed.  If you are registered but not sure where to vote, check here.

I honestly don’t care who you vote for.  I mean it.  All that really matters is that you vote.  If you don’t, then I will expect you to keep your mouth shut for the next four years if things don’t go the way you wanted.  You forfeited that right when you stayed home.  So go.

And if you already did, either by absentee or early voting, thank you.  Sit back, relax and wait with the rest of us.


A Last Visit To The Oracles

The final numbers from the predictors are in.  Take your pick.  If you’re for Trump, make it chloroform.

First, Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight:

Hillary Clinton has a 70 percent chance of winning the election, according to both the FiveThirtyEight polls-only and polls-plus models. That’s up from a 65 percent chance on Sunday night, so Clinton has had a good run in the polls in the final days of the campaign. Clinton’s projected margin of victory in the popular vote has increased to 3.5 percent from 2.9 percent.

fivethirtyeight-pollsonly-11-08-16Here’s Sam Wang’s call at the Princeton Election Consortium:

Here are my best estimates. The Presidential and House races are a near-replica of 2012. Four Senate races are within one percentage point. Partisans in Indiana, Missouri, New Hampshire, and North Carolina may want to lawyer up for possible recount battles.


President: Hillary Clinton (D).

Most probable single outcome (shown on map below): Clinton 323 EV, Trump 215 EV.


The biggest change in the results is that both models plus the Upshot at the New York Times are calling for the Senate to be handed over to the Democrats by the slimmest of margins: 538 calling it 50-50, which means the Democrats control because Vice President Kaine breaks a tie, or 52-48 via PEC (Independents Bernie Sanders (VT) and Angus King (ME) caucus with the Democrats).  That would fend off total gridlock, which is guaranteed if all the Democrats have is the White House (see Obama, Barack 2010-2016).

Now it’s your turn.