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  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    The American Conservative Union has released its 2009 Congressional vote ratings, as it usually does during its CPAC conference, and finds that both Kerry and Kirk were among the 24 Senators scoring a perfect 0 on its scale; and that 8 of Massachusetts's 10 US Representatives also managed a goose egg. Lynch and Neal managed to each get 4 (on a scale to 100) for voting in favor of a pro-life amendment to the health care bill.

  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Tom" asks:

    Will a Republican primary opponent emerge to take on Richard Tisei for Lt. Governor? If so, what are the odds he will be defeated?

    I've been expecting a challenge, but at this point I don't think anyone significant is going to do it.

  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Jesse" asks:

    What is your prediction for the Middlesex, Suffolk, Essex special election?

    Marjorie Decker starts with a big name-recognition edge, which might be enough in a quick special-election cycle if she runs a good operation. (Her failure to meet last year's signature deadline, which forced her to run a sticker campaign for re-election, was not a great sign of strong organization.

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  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    Things are heating up on Ask Me Anything Day! "George Williams" asks:

    When will the first black Mayor of Boston be elected?...and what current black pols do you think have a chance at being the one to make history?

    As for the 'when,' that depends in large part on whether Tom Menino decides to run for a historic 9th term, or calls it quits in 2025.

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  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Mike S." asks:

    Is Bill Clinton the only president since the New Deal to actually decrease the number of federal government jobs in the US?

    My understanding is that the number fell by roughly 5% under Clinton, primarily from military reductions. I believe that's the only Presidency to decline since JFK, but I don't know whether post-war figures declined during Truman and/or Eisenhower. I'll get back to you.

  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    "Bill" asks:

    What will happen at the State Democratic convention in June? Will all the candidates (i.e: Grace Ross and Mike Lake) get the 15% needed to get on the primary ballot?

    I can't predict with any confidence, because frankly the inner workings of state Democratic convention politics is far beyond my level of comprehension.

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  • February 19, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    Nearly as exciting as National Pancake Day (next Tuesday!), it's Ask Me Anything Day at the Talking Politics blog!

    Please leave your questions as comments to this post, or email them to me directly at dbernstein@phx.com. Your name can be withheld if you don't want it revealed. (Or, if you don't want to reveal which elected official or candidate who you work for directed you to ask the question about how great I think they are.

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  • February 18, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    Mitt Romney just gave his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), which started today; I've been watching livestreaming, and also have a copy of Romney's speech. As I have suggested, his emphasis is now entirely on foreign-policy and economic issues (and how to strengthen America, rather than weaken it as Obama is doing, in his view).

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  • February 18, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    --Isn't it interesting that doemstic terrorist Amy Bishop was a graduate student at HARVARD in the early 1990s, just as known terrorist pal BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA was finishing at Harvard Law School? And that Bishop may have sent a PIPE BOMB at roughly the same time that domestic terrorist bomb-maker BILL AYERS was launching Obama's political career? What is the CONNECTION BETWEEN OBAMA, BISHOP, AND AYERS? Why isn't the mainstream media asking these important questions? And why has OBAMA REFUSED TO EXPLAIN HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH AMY BISHOP? And most importantly, why haven't I received any emails from rabid Obama-haters DEMANDING ANSWERS TO THESE QUESTIONS?

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  • February 17, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    In this week's issue of the Boston Phoenix -- in print tomorrow, online now -- I have a column about the recent announcements that Patrick Kennedy and Evan Bayh will retire from the House and Senate, repectively, and the rumor that other Democrats, including Bill Delahunt, may be next.

    My take? I don't think Democrats are running scared, but I do think we're in the midst of a turbulent and volatile national political environment.

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  • February 12, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    As you may know, a couple of weeks before the 2008 Iowa caucuses I broke a story refuting Mitt Romney's claim that his father had marched with Martin Luther King Jr. That story ended up getting huge national attention, and perhaps hurt Romney in his quest for the nomination.

    My current feature about Mitt Romney, suggesting that he is re-launching himself as a slightly different candidate for 2012, has also gotten a fair amount of national attention.

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  • February 10, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    In this week's issue of the Boston Phoenix -- in print tomorrow, online now -- I have my first big "Romney 2012" feature of the cycle. Too soon? It's never too soon!

    In the piece I suggest that Romney is using the publishing of his new book (my review of which will be online later today Update: is online now!!!) to relaunch himself for the 2012 Presidential nomination campaign.

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  • February 09, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    "I believe that climate change is occurring -- the reduction in the size of global ice caps is hard to ignore. I also believe that human activity is a contributing factor."

    So writes Massachusetts's last Republican Governor, Mitt Romney, in his upcoming book (an advance proof of which I got my hands on today).

    That's after Romney abandoned his relatively moderate Masssachusetts political persona, and veered rightward for a national GOP audience.

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  • February 09, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    Somerville's seven Ward Democratic Party Committees held their caucuses last night, to elect delegates to the state convention. All other committees aren't allowed to start holding caucuses until Wednesday, but apparently Somerville is special. (I'm told that it was the only time they could get home-town boy Congressman Michael Capuano to speak, so the state party gave them a waiver.

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  • February 08, 2010
    By David S. Bernstein

    In my ongoing coverage of the rapid extinction of GOP women holding elected office, I have more bleak news. The NRCC (National Republican Congressional Committee) has added 14 new candidates to its "Young Guns" program, and promoted 15 of its Young Guns to "Contender" status. Of the 14 added, one is a woman; of the 15 promoted, one is a woman.

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