We know how this goes by now, don’t we?

Nate Silver is a national treasure. He somehow manages to keep his head when all around him are losing theirs:

But is Mr. Perry electable? One alternative is to look at Mr. Perry’s performance among voters who do know him — the good folks down in Texas. Mr. Perry has never lost an election, a rarity even for candidates who go on to become president. Some victories early in his career are impressive: for instance, defeating the incumbent Democratic agriculture commissioner, Jim Hightower, in 1990, a point in time at when Texas still often voted Democratic at the state level. (Mr. Perry was himself a Democrat until 1989.) Nowadays, however, Republicans in Texas essentially never lose a statewide race, so the fact of Mr. Perry’s re-election alone does not tell us all that much. Instead, we need some kind of a control group.

One choice is simply to look at how other Republicans running for statewide office in Texas fared in the years that Mr. Perry was running. In 2002, for example, when Mr. Perry was elected to his first full term after succeeding George W. Bush, his margin of victory was 18 percentage points. That holds up pretty well against other Republican candidates for statewide office that year (excluding those who did not draw a Democratic challenger), who won by an average of 15 percentage points.
Mr. Perry’s performance in 2006 was much more tenuous: he was re-elected with just 39 percent of the vote in a complicated, four-way race. Even if we ignore that and instead look at Mr. Perry’s nine-point margin of victory over his nearest rival, Chris Bell, a Democrat, it compares unfavroably to other Republicans on the ballot that year, who won by an average of 15 points. (2006 was a very Democratic year nationally, but not so much in Texas.)

Last year, Mr. Perry was re-elected to another term, defeating Bill White, a Democrat and the former mayor of Houston. But his 13-point margin of victory is underwhelming for such a Republican state in such a Republican year. Other Republicans on the Texas ballot last year won by an average of 27 percentage points instead.
Over all, Mr. Perry has won his three elected terms with an average victory margin of 13 percentage points. That’s certainly not a disaster, but it lags the 19-point margin for other Texas Republicans running in those years. In the most recent two elections, Mr. Perry was losing quite a few voters who were voting for Republican for almost every other office. I know, it’s not the most overwhelming evidence: every election and every state is different. A more empirically grounded line of research, which we’ll address in a separate piece, is how much a candidate’s ideology affects the presidential race over all.

Next we’ll find out the Texas Miracle isn’t really a miracle, and has more to do with federal stimulus dollars than Perry’s celebrated swagger or small-government commonsense conservatism.

I think we’re making progress, though. We didn’t find out that Bush’s Texas Education Miracle was just so much nonsense and spin until well after he was elected.






98 replies
  1. 1
    jl says:

    I hope Christie gets in.

    Perry and Christie going at each other would be a real demolition derby.

  2. 2
    Hunter Gathers says:

    @jl:

    I hope Christie gets in.

    He’d have to drop at least 100 pounds before even giving it serious thought. If he were to jump in right now, he’d drop dead of a heart attack within a month. He literally cannot handle a nation campaign. He’s too fucking fat.

  3. 3
    srv says:

    If Texas is such a miracle, why were they $24B short on their biennial budget?

  4. 4
  5. 5
    kay says:

    @cleek:

    Professional pundits make me feel old.

    I’m sitting there thinking “don’t fall so hard! You barely know this person! Stop talking about dancing with him. Stay focused! “

  6. 6
    Danny says:

    Kevin Drum has a post where he argues that even though you can chip away at Perrys job creation record in various ways, the “Texas Miracle” is gonna be his strongest calling card, as long as he keeps touting the job creation numbers. That rings true but I think all his opponents has to do really is focus on Texas unemployment rate, which is 8.2%. That’s slightly better than average, but not extremely good.

  7. 7
    John X. says:

    You want to refute the Texas Miracle? Stick a camera on top of a car and drive through Texas.

    Place is a shithole.

  8. 8
    Erin says:

    STOP STOP STOP DINGING RICK PERRY.

    Seriously, liberals should hold their fire. Rick Perry is our best chance at reelection next to Bachmann who is unelectable.

    Rick Perry loses more republican voters than Mitt Romney nationwide.

  9. 9
    kindness says:

    This is all true but that doesn’t stop the MSM wankers of seeing starbursts & getting tingles up their legs for the new ‘it’ boy.

    Jesus we’re fucked.

    @jl: I just spit up my lunch a little in the back of my mouth. No doubt you didn’t mean sexually but…..

  10. 10
    lllphd says:

    i’m hoping the facts will make perry this cycle’s fred thompson, albeit with a far more spectacularly impressive flame-out exit.

  11. 11
    Danny says:

    @Erin:

    So you’re implying liberals hating Rick Perry makes him less likely to win the republican primary?

  12. 12
    Bruce S says:

    Given that, as Jared Bernstein has noted, in addition to his “Obama stimulus” spending to balance Texas’ books, 40% of the government jobs added in the US between 2007 and 2010 were in Texas, it looks like the anti-government rhetoric works for Rick Perry much the way that the anti-gay therapy works for Marcus Bachmann…

  13. 13
    Frankensteinbeck says:

    Cleek:
    What bothers me is that the media has no interest in nuanced stories and judging from past performance will like Perry personally and want to cover for him. Information like this is unlikely to get out heavily even on our own side until the debates. Only when the TV networks have no way to avoid prominently covering Obama speaking directly to and about his opponent will our side even be heard. ‘The stimulus directly created jobs’ does not have a musky scent, a manly swagger, or a codpiece-enhancing flight suit.

  14. 14
    schrodinger's cat says:

    I don’t get the punditubbie concept of hotness. Last election cycle it was Fred Thompson who got them hot and bothered this time its Perry. I mean neither of them is ugly but not what I would call handsome.
    ETA: Also they both seem rather old to me.

  15. 15
    Mark S. says:

    The poll is a little old, but I’m still stunned by the result: Perry trails Obama in Texas. Shit, former Taxachussetts Governor Mitt Romney polls better than Perry in Texas.

    If When the Lone Star State becomes competitive in presidential elections, it’s going to be tougher than hell for a gooper to get in the White House. They already have to win Florida and Ohio to get to 270; adding Texas to the mix will be fatal.

  16. 16
    schrodinger's cat says:

    Help! I am in moderation.

  17. 17
    Alex S. says:

    What would the unemployment rate of Texas be if their incarceration rate was more in line with other states?

  18. 18
    lllphd says:

    follow-up thought: the trajectory of perry’s campaign pivots on where ailes invests fox news fervor. and it appears that choice might be chris christie, a far more viable and formidable candidate for the general, tho i think he’d have trouble in the primaries, the equation that underlies all of the GOP identity crisis (and hopefully, its doom).

  19. 19
    tokyokie says:

    12.Bruce S – August 17, 2011 | 4:23 pm · Link

    Given that, as Jared Bernstein has noted, in addition to his “Obama stimulus” spending to balance Texas’ books, 40% of the government jobs added in the US between 2007 and 2010 were in Texas, it looks like the anti-government rhetoric works for Rick Perry much the way that the anti-gay therapy works for Marcus Bachmann…

    There was a huge boost in Border Patrol hiring, and seeing as Texas has the longest border with Mexico, it would figure the preponderence of that hiring was in Texas.

  20. 20
    Mino says:

    My sister, who gets all her talking points from e-mails–that’s how wingnutty she is–hates Perry. Though she can’t articulate why. Guess it’s that go-with-your-gut thing Bush used to do.

  21. 21
    gf120581 says:

    When the Lone Star State becomes competitive in presidential elections, it’s going to be tougher than hell for a gooper to get in the White House.

    Try impossible. The GOP losing Texas would be like the Dems losing California. It couldn’t be done. And unfortunately for the GOP, Texas is slowly but surely turning into another California demographic-wise, unless the GOP shapes up and stops Hispanic-bashing.

    Not that I expect Perry to lose Texas if he were the nominee, but he is much weaker in the state than people think.

  22. 22
    gbear says:

    TPM is right in calling that link the ‘chart of the day’. The Jared Bernstein story has been absolutely everywhere today. I don’t think I’ve been to one blog that hasn’t mentioned it.

  23. 23
    bob h says:

    Perry is an existential threat to the US

  24. 24
    Zach says:

    That analysis leans way too heavily on an election in which Kinky Friedman got 12.6% of the vote because everyone knew who was going to win.

  25. 25
    Mark S. says:

    @Mino:

    I don’t know what it is, but even in a previous life when I was a Republican living in Texas I couldn’t stand Perry. I had just moved down there and he was in a race for Lt. Gov. and it was a sleaze-a-thon of “This candidate likes child molesters because he voted to comply with a court order to reduce prison overcrowding.” Both candidates in the race sucked, but I remember Perry cause he won.

  26. 26
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    Nate has a point, but a win is a win, no matter how narrow or ugly.

    I’m not trying to be an alarmist; I’m not saying Perry is guaranteed to win the nomination or the Presidency. What I’m trying to do is get people to take the threat of Perry seriously. We need to counter the spin on the Texas economy and show just exactly what Republican governance has wrought down here. We need to get the word out about the Willingham case, we need to get the word out about the state of Texas schools, etc.

    Like I’ve said before, Bush was elected twice. We tried to warn people about him the first time, but were dismissed because he obviously couldn’t win the nomination, much less the Presidency. We’re in real danger of repeating that mistake, of dismissing Gov. Goodhair and his wacky ways.

    An unspoken assumption is that every vote Perry loses is a vote gained for Obama. That isn’t necessarily true. Here’s a nightmare scenario for you: moderates, distrustful of Obama and his SOSHULIST agenda and disgusted by the Perry freak show, all stay home. The manic progressives, disgusted by Obama and his NOT SOSHULIST ENOUGH agenda, either write in their favorite magic progressive pony candidate or stay home, and the 27 percenters again determine the fate of the country.

  27. 27
    dmsilev says:

    @jl:

    Perry and Christie going at each other would be a real demolition derby sumo match.

    Fixed.

  28. 28
    nellcote says:

    The chart shows that Texas employment wasn’t down much at all in these years, as the state lost only 53,000 jobs. But looming behind that number are large losses in the private sector (down 178,000) and large gains (up 125,000) in government jobs.

    http://jaredbernsteinblog.com/

  29. 29
    cackalacka says:

    @Erin:

    I think Perry is a foil to make Romney appear more centrist than he actually is.

  30. 30
    Suffern ACE says:

    @kay:

    Professional pundits make me feel old.

    I’m sitting there thinking “don’t fall so hard! You barely know this person! Stop talking about dancing with him. Stay focused! ”

    But maahamm…he’s so dreamy.

  31. 31
    fasteddie9318 says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    If he were to jump in right now, he’d drop dead of a heart attack within a month.

    Is it wrong that the first thing I thought of when I read this was that I should start an online “Draft Christie” movement?

  32. 32
    Bruce S says:

    tokyokie – the increase in government jobs in Texas also aligns with the growth in population. Actually the figure is 47%, not 40% as I initially stated. Nothing wrong with that. But it doesn’t explain how Perry squares his using stimulus money to balance his books, while attacking the stimulus. Texas is welcome to do what they need to do and use any opportunities available to boost employment or fill their state coffers. Just don’t send out a piece of crap like Perry to noisily piss on the rest the very folks (Obama’s administration) who are helping to keep his game afloat. Like Palin, who oversaw the biggest scheme of “S-word” state ownership of productive resources within the borders of the US, he’s a big-government closet queen with a trash mouth and a tired bag of self-serving publicity stunts, playing to the ignorant TeaTards who drive base politics in the GOP. Perry is welcome – in my book – to shove himself up his own ass. He’s as phony as they come.

  33. 33
    Bruce S says:

    RE #12 – that’s 47% of all government jobs in the US added in TX from 2007-2010, not 40%.

  34. 34
    Frankensteinbeck says:

    Suffern Ace:
    Did I mention his musky scent? And he’s sun-chapped! I hope he puts his hand on my thigh!

    This pundit mancrush thing is fucked up. I don’t mind if they’re gay and in the closet, but to be gay and in the closet and use their political commentary podium to fantasize is creepy.

  35. 35
    Dave says:

    Every time Perry touts his jobs I would point out that unemployment is lower in the liberal elite, highly taxed states of New York and Massachusetts.

  36. 36
    Hill Dweller says:

    @fasteddie9318: In other Christie related news, Fitch just downgraded New Jersey’s credit rating from AA to AA- this afternoon.

  37. 37
    Mino says:

    @Mark S.: The 1998 race against John Sharp? Man, I wish Texas had keep that man in office. He excelled in making government get value for every cent it spent. I just heard that he’s not going to run for Senate, he’s going to be President of Texas A&M. That might help keep the university system alive in Texas until the economy improves, so there is that.

  38. 38
    Lolis says:

    @Erin:

    Yeah, I agree. Let the media swoon over Rick Perry and sweep him to victory in the primaries. He would be a gift to Obama. I live in Texas and know Perry cannot appeal to swing voters. Obama could kiss his ass even if it unemployment were to get worse.

  39. 39
    Mino says:

    @Hill Dweller: What’s that word I want?? Oh, yeah, Schadenfreude.

  40. 40
    4tehlulz says:

    @Lolis:

    Obama could kiss his ass even if it unemployment were to get worse.

    Spellcheck is not your friend.

  41. 41
    El Cid says:

    Yay! A Balloon-Juice term beloved by our own collection of neurotics may be going microscopically mainstream, i.e., the tiny number of people who know what the fuck a New Mexico OFA staffer is talking about, as highlighted in the Huffington Post which is also assuming that anyone outside a vanishingly small set knows what the fuck he’s talking about.

    Obama Campaign Staffer Sends Out Email Bashing Paul Krugman And The ‘Firebagger Lefty Blogosphere’
    __
    On the evening of Aug. 1, just after Congress passed legislation to raise the debt ceiling, Obama for America (OFA) New Mexico State Director Ray Sandoval sent an email to supporters with the subject line, “Please take 5 minutes to read this, Please.”
    __
    “I know many of you have raised frustrations, but please, I implore you, please take 5 minutes and read the article below. It does a great job of explaining the Debt Ceiling deal,” Sandoval wrote in bold text.
    __
    The rest of the email was a blog post taken from a blog called “The People’s View,” run by Spandan Chakrabarti…

    No, the loudest screeching noise you hear coming from Krugman and the ideologue Left is, of course, Medicare. Oh, no, the President is agreeing to a Medicare trigger!!! Oh noes!!! Everybody freak out right now! But let’s look at the deal again, shall we? […]
    __
    Now let’s get to the fun part: the triggers. The more than half-a-trillion in defense and security spending cut “trigger” for the Republicans will hardly earn a mention on the Firebagger Lefty blogosphere. Hell, it’s a trigger supposedly for the Republicans, and of course, there’s always It’sNotEnough-ism to cover it.

    Personally I don’t give much of a shit, but I think it’s interesting that an economist who has been correct in economic analysis is lumped with the people behind a quite obscure blog (obscure outside these ultra-tiny circles). But Paul Krugman fails to act as a White House adviser, and demanding too much / etc., so I hate him too.

    Even amusing when I read all the time that such sub-groups are a laughably small population that regards themselves as “the base” (a straight-forward and quite sensible point) but yet are considered a center-point of discussion by staffers who believe they are in touch with a much larger population.

  42. 42
    Steve M. says:

    Mr. Perry has never lost an election, a rarity even for candidates who go on to become president.

    Beyond what Nate has revealed here, why is it seen as a plus never to have lost an election? Obama, Clinton, both Bushes, Nixon — all lost elections. All learned political lessons from their losses, which helped them become, if not necessarily more effective officeholders, then certainly more effective candidates. Maybe it’s not great to have never lost an election — you start thinking you don’t need to earn it.

  43. 43
    JC says:

    Well, let’s hope this is true.

    I still say, it’s stupid and counterproductive to compare him to the other ‘wannabees’ in the race.

    a. He’s been a successful governor of a big Southern state for 10 years. All the stuff about where the jobs came from, stimulus etc, will fall by the wayside with the average voter.
    b. He’s a great campaigner, and CAN win the base. Imagine Perry, with his take no prisoners style (seen over the last week), confronting multiple-choice Mitt. I may be wrong, but I see Mitt wilting, and losing, because the base doesn’t trust him.
    c. He is smart enough to keep to script. He will MODERATE once he has won the primary. And basically coast on the buckets of corporate cash that will run ‘where are the JOBZ??” 24/7, on every network.

    Is he, due to his nature, going to ‘implode’?

    EDIT: Maybe. But he is much more disciplined than these other guys – Palin, Trump, Guiliani. So it’s as likely he won’t.

    I don’t am not sure all of these ‘gotcha’ statistics, are going to matter, come next year. What will matter is if unemployment is under 8%. Perry or Romney will be credible in that scenario. And Perry can win the base.

    c.

  44. 44
    darms says:

    The big winners here in TX are ‘none of the above’ meaning the R gets elected. Don’t have the exact numbers handy but in the 2010 TX gubernatorial election, something like 27% of eligible people were not registered to vote and 45% of those that were registered did not vote. Perry got about 15% of the vote, his opponent got about 13%. Yeah, Perry got 1/3 the votes ‘nota’ got but the votes for ‘nota’ were ‘cast’ by voters staying home.

  45. 45
    Sentient Puddle says:

    Republicans in Texas aren’t big fans of Perry in general, but I’d be careful of taking that fact and saying that he loses Republican votes in general. The guy can play his base like a fiddle and get them out to vote exactly when he needs. After all, he was supposed to lose pretty handily to Kay Bailey Hutchinson when she got in the race.

    Still, I’m not entirely sure I’d call him particularly electable at the moment. Things like his treason comments make it sound to me like he’s trying to play his same Texas game on the national stage. That ain’t going to work in a country that isn’t as red as Texas.

  46. 46
    steve says:

    @Hunter Gathers: “[christie’s] too fucking fat.”

    WSJ story headline right now:

    “Christie still weighing toll increase plan”

  47. 47
    Frankensteinbeck says:

    El Cid:
    The problem is that Krugman combines being a great economist and a justifiably respected one with some serious ODS. His first commentary on the debt deal had no economic analysis beyond a general ‘cuts bad’ statement. No details, no analysis of whether the cuts were real, a question already being asked. Even when he’s being a good economist, he consistently uses the logic that what we got must have been Obama’s preference. Obama’s calls for the stimulus Krugman wants are ignored. You get a very distorted political view reading him. It’s no wonder some people lump him in with the Firebaggers. Personally, I give him his own special ‘mixed feelings and grain of salt’ category.

  48. 48
    nellcote says:

    He beat Hightower? Now I really hate that jerk.

  49. 49
    nellcote says:

    @El Cid:

    Krugman is 1)a great economist and 2) a clueless politician. The firebaggers celebrate 1) and ignore 2).

  50. 50
    eemom says:

    @steve:

    I saw another headline re poll numbers today: “Christie still flat in New Jersey.”

  51. 51
    El Cid says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: I had some input, but I don’t want to compound already introducing a continually obsessive topic here, and I remember that people don’t like that sort of post topic interruptus.

  52. 52
    Hal says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    The problem is that Krugman combines being a great economist and a justifiably respected one with some serious ODS.

    I’ve said before, Krugman, Greenwald, Bill Maher, Maddow, among many other; strike me as political idealists, not realists. I just don’t consider many of them to be very good at political strategy, though I agree with many of the criticisms.

  53. 53

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Rick Perry will have a spectacular flame-out and Mitt Romney will be the candidate. That is how the money people want it.

    I mean Jesus, people. Remember when Donald fucking Trump was the media’s GOP darling?

    Nothing demonstrates how absolutely useless our news media is than their fawning over every shiny-sparkly new thing that comes down the pike. Jon Stewart was right last night when he lickened them to the ADD dog in “Up.”

  54. 54
    eemom says:

    the thing about Christie is, he has gone on record for not being a racist asshole to Muslims.

    His entry into the race, therefore, would have a, um, sizable impact: it would increase the number of objectively good qualities in the entire republican field to 1.

  55. 55
    Hal says:

    BTW, I’m really surprised Christie’s weight hasn’t been more of an issue yet. People cared about McCain’s Cancer, Obama’s smoking, Reagan’s age etc, so why not Christie’s weight?

  56. 56
    catclub says:

    Is anyone else for Perry as the first closeted gay GOP president?

    ETA: I am waiting to see what Karl Rove comes up with. It is well known they do not like each other.

  57. 57
    JC says:

    @Southern Beale:

    Rick Perry will have a spectacular flame-out and Mitt Romney will be the candidate.

    Possibly. But your comparison to Trump does not make the case.

    Trump – never a poltician. Spoiled, came from money. Lots of reasons to not be trusted by the base.

    Perry – governor ten years. Disciplined, came from nothing. IS trusted by the base.

    You are of course correct on the media – from THAT perspective, the Media is uselessly speculating over the new shiny object.

    But the shiny object, in this case, most likely does have the qualities needed to win the Repub election. And be viable against a 9% unemployment, which will be hung on Obama, next year.

  58. 58
    JC says:

    @catclub: I keep hearing about this – is this just some bogus malicious rumor? I mean, I know Burnt Orange was relaying stuff about this 5 years or so ago, right?

    But something like that, I default it to garbage, normally, just like that psycho claiming it about Obama.

  59. 59
    eemom says:

    @Hal:

    Krugman really does not deserve to be classed in that bunch. Among other things, he’s the only one who has actual substantive knowledge of what the fuck he’s talking about.

    also, imo, which I recognize that others don’t share, the other three are nothing more than glorified self-promotion whores. I think Krugman says the things he does because he is honestly appalled at how fucked things are.

  60. 60
    pragmatism says:

    prolly said before, but perry and palin are pimped to make ryan or christie look sane and presidential. emperor kristol commands it.

  61. 61
    David Hunt says:

    @gbear:

    The GOP losing Texas would be like the Dems losing California. It couldn’t be done. And unfortunately for the GOP, Texas is slowly but surely turning into another California demographic-wise, unless the GOP shapes up and stops Hispanic-bashing.

    There’s a flaw in that logic. It assumes that the various minorities that are getting bashed and presumably would vote against the Goopers who are bashing them will actually be allowed to vote or that their votes will be actually counted if they do get to vote. I think voter suppression is the hidden gem/growth industry in Republican electioneering. Look at what’s going on in Wisconsin. First they pass the most restrictive Voter ID law in the country, requiring a state-issued ID and not even allowing U.S. Passports for voting ID purposes. Then they shut down DMV’s in a bunch of Democrat heavy districts for “budgetary reasons.” Wham, bam, less Democrats that can legally vote.

  62. 62
    catclub says:

    @JC: My understanding (fwiw)
    comes from scanning the hate on Perry at Townhall. It is GOP hate on Perry (not sure that the anti-obama hate is democratic).

    They also hate that he was Gore’s 1988 Texas campaign manager. I am sure that if Gore were to endorse Perry for that, during the primaries, fun would ensue.

  63. 63
    Danny says:

    @El Cid:

    Krugman’s a brilliant guy and an effective proponent of Keynesian economics. Thus he serves an extremely important purpose in a country where the majority of the population dont believe in Keynesian economics and believe that spending cuts create jobs.

    Problem is he seems to have tendencies to in his punditry at times bastardize his popular Keynesianism to sound like “deficits dont matter, ever” – which is an untenable position to be in for democrats and progressives because:

    a) it isnt true, and
    b) the american people doesnt agree.

    On the debt ceiling deal a reasonable reaction from a principled Keynesian would have been to concede that that deal will neither help nor hurt the economy in any noticeable way in the short term (barring effects on account of human psychology: confidence fairy, SPP, etc). Of course, you can still criticize the discretionary spending cuts for hurting important programs, etc. But pretending it will hurt the economy in the next two years just isnt true. The cuts are to small, which Obama and dems made sure, and Krugman knows that.

  64. 64
    catclub says:

    @pragmatism: and of course, Kristol is never wrong.

  65. 65
    Danny says:

    This is by the way what the staffer writes about Krugman, and while the hyperbole is unpersuasive, the criticism is perfectly fair and accurate on the merits:

    Paul Krugman is a political rookie. At least he is when compared to President Obama. That’s why he unleashed a screed as soon as word came about the debt ceiling compromise between President Obama and Congressional leaders – to, you know, avert an economic 9/11. Joining the ideologue spheres’ pure, fanatic, indomitable hysteria, Krugman declares the deal a disaster – both political and economic – of course providing no evidence for the latter, which I find curious for this Nobel winning economist

    Declaring the deal an economic disaster in the short term was inaccurate, because it isnt an economic disaster in the short term. Not providing evidence was surprising from a Nobel laureate, but not that surprising really, considering the fact that no serious Keynesian could really show the deal to be disastrous to the economy, in the short term.

    So it shouldnt be surprising at all if the Obama admin pushed back on the record against that, since they received criticism that wasnt fair.

    But this wasnt even the Obama admin pushing back on the record. It was some OFA staffer in New Mexico doing the push-back, and whatever your opinion of what was said, you can hardly blame anyone but that OFA staffer for saying it.

  66. 66
    El Cid says:

    @nellcote: Well, I’m unencumbered by addicting myself to one source and every emission. If that were the case I’d be reading and listening to no one. If people think that this wouldn’t apply to the non-fireythingies, they’re drugged. I see enough wild fantasies by supposedly sober establishment politicians and advisers. This indeed is one of the few rules which could be used for “both sides”. As Orwell said, “All propaganda’s lying, it’s lying even when it’s true.”

    At some point, as well, I just get fucking tired of some broad assumption that my view of what reality is and what sensible policy should be would best not just be tempered by but entirely restricted by the artifice of current political context. I.e., don’t even explore the aforementioned in your own head unless you block off all improper thoughts but the latter. Do that all the time, and you can never even think for yourself what simply makes sense.

    Otherwise there’s not much cause for me to think about anything myself, outside careful ingestion of, whatever, White House and DNC press releases, because this would be a lot quicker than reading blogs which make the same points and recommendations in different form.

  67. 67
    Corner Stone says:

    @Danny: I’m not sure from your characterization here, but to be clear, the OFA point person for NM did not write this about Kthug. He quoted the hyperbole from a thepeoplesview.net
    Which, if you skim to get a passing familiarity with that certain site, it adds a little context to the screed.

  68. 68
    El Cid says:

    @Danny: I’m a nobody, but there won’t ever be a time when I’ll restrict myself from saying what I think is either empirical reality or logical evaluation because of what “the American people” think.

    So whatever the reality is for the likely futures of particular politicians or sets of such, I wouldn’t ask anyone to say or believe anything about deficits / spending / debts which isn’t what he or she thinks is a fair match with empirical reality, despite any number of polls. Such an approach is a freedom to be enjoyed at the very minimum by those not running for office.

  69. 69
    El Cid says:

    6 pm already? Holy crap, the blogiverse is a time-sucking vortex. Later all.

  70. 70
    Danny says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Ok, thanks. I’ve never visited thepeoplesview, so I dont know what to expect from them. My point was mainly that I do think Krugman’s been throwing out the baby with the bath water in his eagerness to be an effective advocate for Keynesianism at times lately and he should expect pushback when his punditry wanders off into inaccurate alarmism. He isnt above criticism – no one is.

  71. 71
    Corner Stone says:

    @Sentient Puddle:

    After all, he was supposed to lose pretty handily to Kay Bailey Hutchinson when she got in the race.

    I didn’t know anyone who thought that. KBH was not only a lackluster campaigner for this specific campaign, but she had already started to turn so far right she bought two right shoes to slip on each morning.
    At the time I worked with a big R donor who was very angry with Perry about some Texas A&M shenannies and he had been working with KBH’s people about support. He didn’t seem too impressed, IIRC.

  72. 72
    Corner Stone says:

    @Danny: The reason I pointed it out is because to me, that piece of info begs the question of “why?”. Why is the OFA point person for NM not only sending out an obviously inflammatory piece of rhetoric, but more to the point, why is the OFA point person for NM full block quoting a screed from an incredibly obscure site to use as an attack against a marginally less obscure site? And why pin Kthug in there at all?
    I’m sure there’s a reason but the OFA point person for NM has stopped talking.

  73. 73
    kindness says:

    @Southern Beale: Naa. While Perry couldn’t win in the general with his hard ass take no prisoners approach, in Republican primaries they will all give their first born for that shit. He’s Teabagger gold & will win the nomination easily. Once he’s won that, the Roves & the Wall Streeters will support him, ’cause thats what they do.

  74. 74

    The OFA dude in Nm, was spot on in his political slam of Mr. — “The President Surrenders” Krugman, up to and including the fact the prez very much does want additional stim spending jobs bills. The rest of Krugman’s criticism of the “debt deal” was such a fact free criticism, I am surprised he could write it with a straight face. So far, everything agreed to is fully keynesian, and the fact that the wingers won’t vote for additional short term stim spending bills, has nothing to do with that. Some of you want to throw your hat in the ring for a NYT columnist over the president of your own side, then have at it. See you on the other side

    Kthug has himself a pol following in the Hamsher/Greenwald world. Good for him, he can take his lumps like every other player in that thunderdome. And not hide behind academia, . Far as i’m concerned, at this point, Krugman and all the other ODS folks out there can pound sand. They are all wingnuts to me, of one kind or another. Say something not canned dogma to critique Obama, that looks like a fact, and we can talk. Not so much otherwise.

  75. 75
    Danny says:

    @El Cid:

    Well, sure. But if someone wants to be an effective professional advocate, then that person needs to know both what beliefs people hold and what theory and empirical data says.

    In this particular case, mainstream Keynesian economics and a majority of americans agree on deficits and public debt being a problem if it gets to big and or interest rates get to high. There’s nothing in either Keynesian economics or progressive philosophy that mandates running ever higher deficits and accumulating ever higher debt.

    What a majority of americans and Keynesian economics disagree on is when we should deal with deficits and debt. Many americans think it is in bad times, Keynesian economics says we should do it in good times.

    And the present debt deal pushes most of the cuts 5 years from now or later, so it’s not inconsistent with Keynesian economics, assuming the economy is in better shape by then. Finding that common ground, to more effectively advocate additional short term stimulus is what I’d like to see from Krugman.

  76. 76

    @Corner Stone:

    Well, I guess The Peoples View may not be so obscure a site going forward. And why don’t you stfu with your usual bullshit, and go to that blog, if you want, and bring us a challenge of something they report. Fapping is cheap. Firebagging is cheaper still.

  77. 77
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    I am still figuring out how a Republican can live down endorsing Al Gore. This is hilarious. This is the political equivalent of us cozying up to Liberman for president. If Liberman was repentant he might get liberal support for another senate run or governor, but President?

  78. 78
    nellcote says:

    @Corner Stone:

    The reason I pointed it out is because to me, that piece of info begs the question of “why?”. Why is the OFA point person for NM not only sending out an obviously inflammatory piece of rhetoric, but more to the point, why is the OFA point person for NM full block quoting a screed from an incredibly obscure site to use as an attack against a marginally less obscure site? And why pin Kthug in there at all?

    Why is it an article on HuffPoo?

  79. 79
    Corner Stone says:

    @nellcote: I’m not sure I understand your question.

  80. 80
    Danny says:

    @Corner Stone:

    The reason I pointed it out is because to me, that piece of info begs the question of “why?”. Why is the OFA point person for NM not only sending out an obviously inflammatory piece of rhetoric, but more to the point, why is the OFA point person for NM full block quoting a screed from an incredibly obscure site to use as an attack against a marginally less obscure site? And why pin Kthug in there at all?
    I’m sure there’s a reason but the OFA point person for NM has stopped talking.

    I’ll suggest two possible explanations:

    a) The OFA persons received his marching orders from the very top. Obama himself decided it was time that Krugman was “dealt with”. They had the “inflamatory rethoric” planted on the obscure website so it couldnt be traced back to them, and then gave the word to the NM staffer to take down KThug. But some real progressives got word of the scheme and tipped off HuffPo putting a stop to the hitjob. Now no ones talking because they’re afraid the sheeples in the dem base are going to see them for what they are: Liberal hating, Third Way supporting Centrist-Conservatives.

    b) The OFA NM guy admires Obama, is deeply involved in day to day working his ass off doin teh organizing, and got pissed and hurt reading Krugmans writing on the debt ceiling aftermath. He happens to read that blog, or got sent a link to that blog, and agreed with what was said so he mailed it out.

    Take your pick.

    Also: “deeply inflamatory rethoric”. You mean stuff that is on par – and arguably weaker tea – than what you and Cid unload on the President and Democratic establishment every single day? That’s “deeply inflamatory”? Because KThug is a saint, above criticism, that Obama and congressional democrats can never aspire to be?

    Or is it just one more case of emobaggers loving to dish it out but as soon as they receive pushback or one of their saints gets criticized its suddenly NO FAIR and crying all around?

  81. 81

    Why is the OFA point person for NM not only sending out an obviously inflammatory piece of rhetoric,

    I thought you all wanted inflammatory rhetoric from the Obama camp, you know, all that “fighting” shit.

    Krugman headlined “The President Surrenders” from the debt deal on the NYT’s, from the top of the 4th estate Ivory Tower. You want the OFA to be nice and sweet to bullshit like that? Make up you mind, and don’t insult my intelligence by saying Krugman is on Obama’s side, and this is just righteous criticism. Fuck that shit.

  82. 82
    Bill Murray says:

    @General Stuck: so evidently is sensible centrist hippie bashing. and who know fact free criticism better than you

  83. 83
    Violet says:

    If Perry wins the nomination the ads write themselves:

    Voiceover intones: “Republican Governor of Texas for President of the United States? Been there, done that” while images of Dubya, stock market traders during the 2008 crash, foreclosure notices, wars, dead soldiers, etc. are being played. Photo of Bush morphs into photo of Perry. Voiceover continues: We won’t make the same mistake twice.”

    Enough ads like that and people won’t be able to think of Perry without thinking of Dubya. Not a good comparison.

  84. 84

    @Bill Murray:

    LOL, “hippie bashing”? the way worn out canard . Like I said nothin’ but canned dogma ./

  85. 85
    kay says:

    @JC:

    But the shiny object, in this case, most likely does have the qualities needed to win the Repub election. And be viable against a 9% unemployment, which will be hung on Obama, next year.

    Right. I agree. I don’t think Perry is that bad a candidate. The reason I read the Nate Silver piece, and the reason I think he’s valuable, is that he says something.
    He knows how to do …something.

    So if he hears what is clearly a self-serving pat phrase “Perry never lost an election” he’s less likely to think that is determinative, or meaningful.

    County prosecutors do this sort of thing when they run here, locally: “I have never lost at trial”. Well, okay, fabulous, but, they also decide which cases to pursue, because they decide what to bring. Maybe they should have lost one or two. Maybe they under-indict because they’re afraid of losing.

    The stat doesn’t mean anything. But you have to know something to know it doesn’t mean anything.

  86. 86
    Bruce S says:

    Stuck: “don’t insult my intelligence by saying Krugman is on Obama’s side”

    – Excuse me. Are you the Judean People’s Front?

    – Fuck off! We’re the People’s Front of Judea.

    Stuck: “You want the OFA to be nice and sweet to bullshit like that?”

    OFA is nothing if not nice and sweet…and bullshit.

  87. 87
    Grumpy Code Monkey says:

    @Corner Stone:

    KBH was initially seen as a serious primary challenger (Perry’s first in three elections), but in hindsight I’ll allow that was probably wishful thinking by a lot of us. Once the race actually began, it became crystal clear that KBH really didn’t want the job.

  88. 88

    @Bruce S:

    WtF are you talking about?

  89. 89
    A Humble Lurker says:

    Edit: Someone beat me to what I wanted to say. This is why it’s better to be a lurker on Balloon Juice. Someone always beats ya to the punch.

  90. 90
    nellcote says:

    @Danny:

    I’ve never visited thepeoplesview, so I dont know what to expect from them.

    It’s an unapologetic pro-Obama site. You can skip the political posts if you like but I highly recommend the posts that dig down and examine various bills.

    http://www.thepeoplesview.net/

  91. 91
    Danny says:

    Bachmann is McGovern, Perry is Dukakis. He can win if the economy is shitty enough and unemployment is to high, but if it improves to mediocre he’ll be beatable. And he could loose big if he comes across as a symbol of republican overreach.

  92. 92
    Barry says:

    @srv:
    srv

    “If Texas is such a miracle, why were they $24B short on their biennial budget?”

    Because Texan Republicans are liars and frauds?

  93. 93
    Danny says:

    @nellcote:

    Thanks for the link! I’ll check it out.

  94. 94
    The Sheriff's A Ni- says:

    I thought this was the more relevant bit of Nate’s analysis:

    It may be marginally more useful to look at the number the incumbent receives, which is less sensitive to these effects. Those numbers are also not great for Mr. Perry: Mr. Obama gets at least 50 percent of the vote in several of the recent polls against him, which means that even if most of the undecideds are really latent votes for Mr. Perry, he would still lose. Another troubling number is the partisan breakdown in the polls: Mr. Obama leads Mr. Perry by an average of 46 percent to 36 percent among independent voters, while trailing 38 percent to 45 percent against Mr. Romney.

    The takeaway is that Perry has to look as relatively moderate and mainstream as Romney if he wants a chance against Obama. So far, he hasn’t been cutting it and the Obama campaign’s research department and friends aren’t letting up on him either.

  95. 95
    Elie says:

    I frankly don’t think Perry is all that serious about winning…I think that like Palin, he likes the attention and prestige, but what he is saying and how he is behaving just doesnt hold up to beeing a serious candidate.

    We’ll see of course, and I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at how stupid the Republicans are in letting this guy anywhere near even the primaries… I think the few sane heads left in the party probably know this, hence Christie rumors.

  96. 96
    Marginalized for stating documented facts says:

    So far my predictions about GOP candidates in 2012 have been spot-on. Let’s see if I can continue my 100% correct record.

    I predicted Huckabee had no chance (that pardoned rapist did him in) and he dropped out. I predicted Pawlenty had no chance (too liberal for the Repub base nowadays) and he dropped out. I predicted Gingrich had no chance (no brainer there, Gringrich is too crazy and too blatantly corrupt even for the GOP base) and he’s toast.

    I predicted Romney won’t get the nomination since he’s Mormon. Time will tell on that one. Now here’s another prediction: Rick Perry won’t get the nod. He may gather some momentum and seem like a contender for a while, but at least 3 factors combine to pound the nails in Perry’s coffin as a presidential candidate.

    First, Perry looks and talks and acts like the Drunk-Driving C Student who ran America into the ditch for 8 long years, and that’s fatal. If there’s anything voters outside of the deep south don’t want, it’s a Dubya clone. If Jeb Bush is politically radioactive (and he is), Perry is toast.

    Second, Perry’s views are too extreme for swing voters. Worse yet, he’s left a detailed record of what he believes in his books — bad idea. He could learn from Sarah Palin, who fills her books with vaporous oozings about God and patriotism but never actually tells us what her policy positions are. Perry’s book represents a treasure trove of ammo for oppo researchers.

    Third, Perry has made a huge mistake by coming right out and telling everyone what he believes during the campaign. The Drunk-Driving C Student (under Rove’s tutelage) did it right: he lied about everything. If you listened to Bush during the 2000 campaign, he came across as a Nelson Rockefeller-style liberal Republican. “I want a humble America,” compassionate conservative, blah blah woof woof. All bullshit…but useful bullshit. It bamboozled the swing voters, who thought the Drunk-Driving C Student was a reasonable middle-of-the road guy. Then when he became president, he started doing crazy shit like invading Iraq and torturing people, and, well, you know the drill.

    Perry needed to use dog whistles and code phrases to get across his extreme views. Instead, he came right out and said the crazy stuff he believes. Bad bad bad mistake.

    Once again Palin does a much better job. She’s Reagan in a skirt with wildly extreme views, but she scrupulously avoids actually revealing any of the crazy policies she’d push for if she became president. Much smarter move.

    Silver’s stats only tell us what we already know.

    I still say the GOP nomination is Palin’s if she wants it.

  97. 97
    Bruce S says:

    General Stuck – What the F are YOU talking about? If you don’t get it, you never will.

  98. 98

    @Bruce S:

    If you don’t get it, you never will.

    Guess not, coming from such a deep and profound person as yourself. I’ll find a way to go on though.

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