Friday, November 03, 2006

the final local polls show tight races, except Sheriff

Democratic candidate for SLCo Sheriff Dave Winder, who message got some amazingly great news from the Salt Lake Tribune:
Winder, who trailed the sheriff by 30 percentage points one month ago, is favored by 51 percent of county voters compared to 34 percent for Kennard. Fifteen percent are undecided.
Winder, a longtime deputy in the sheriff's office, who contends Kennard is out of touch after 16 years on the job.
"Wow," he said about the 17-point advantage in the poll. "Needless to say, I'm very encouraged." The sheriff's race turned personal after stories broke chronicling Kennard's weekday golf habit, according to tallies of the days he plays 18-hole rounds and his scores, which are posted on the Utah Golf Association Web site. Kennard took offense at Winder's suggestion that golf interfered with his job performance, noting he always is available by cell phone, pager or radio and has been called off the course for emergencies.

Winder's slogan? "It's time for a change." Change seems to be the winning message this year all around the country, will it hurt Sim Gill and Jim Bradley, or is this just a pro-Democratic year?
Republican Lohra Miller holds a narrow edge, 36 to 34 percent over Democrat Sim Gill - a statistical dead heat. The poll shows a substantial amount - 26 percent - still are undecided in the election to replace retiring D.A. David Yocom.
In the County Council at-large contest, Democratic incumbent Jim Bradley leads Republican challenger Janice Auger 37 percent to 32 percent, with 27 percent undecided.
The poll, conducted Oct. 30 through Nov. 1 by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, surveyed 470 voters and has a 4.5 percent margin of error.

Now the race for DA has been tight the whole time, but Bradley had been up by a lot in the September Deseret News/Dan Jones poll. But maybe that is because Auger's "Don't let the 'Grandmother look' fool you." slogan received national attention via TIME magazine.

Mason-Dixon is a pretty reputable polling outfit, and I am glad that the Trib abandoned their previous polling firm that stunk. To me, no body gets Utah polling better than Dan Jones, but this poll is far my recent than the last Dan Jones poll. However, there may be another DJ poll in the field that will come out on Sunday...that is usually what happens. Then there is 48 hours to turns things around for the party that is behind and really Get Out The Vote.

Nevertheless, it remains to be seen if this purported Democratic wave actually does show up and make Tuesday (and early morning Wednesday) happy times for me. I really get too emotionally involved in politics. I remember how depressed I was for about a week after Kerry lost in 2004. Sure I am a partisan, but I am happy even if Democrats lose if at least turn out stays as high as it did in 2004.

great days for democracy

Yesterday I did not post because I was second-chairing a trial. It was my first real trial where I got to make an opening statement and do direct examination (and redirect and reredirect) and voire dire on jurors. Oh by the way, "I" won.

Anyway, while I was there at the SLCo. government center for the case, I saw huge lines for early voting. This was around noon on a Thursday. I also voted early last Friday (so stop calling me Scott McCoy et al) with my wife and then too there was a pretty serious line for around 4 o'clock. And my sense that this a big turnout is supported by this Deseret News story:
As of Thursday, the state has reported 50,000 votes have been cast.
"As we look at other states that have implemented early voting, this is higher than any other state in terms of percentage, this far, at their first go-around with early voting," said Joe Demma, chief of staff for the state elections office under the direction of Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert. "We're extremely pleased."

People love the convenience of voting on their own time ahead of the election so that it becomes just like going to to grocery store and not something you have to squeeze into a predetermined Tuesday. Political parties love to "bank" their partisans votes early. I love early voting, but I like vote by mail even more.

Voting and registering to vote should be as easy as getting a discount card or a credit card and then shopping online or going to the store to use them. Why is it that Republicans always seem to want to make it harder to vote. The more people vote, the more representative our officials and initiatives will be...the more credibility their decision will later have.

If you win Rove style (50.1%), you have a really small margin of error, next thing you know, you are in the high 30s. And because of this ultra-partisan ultra-divisive way Rove has run the country, Democrats will take back the House and maybe the Senate too. I can't wait until next Tuesday.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

embed with the pollsters

not a dimes worth of difference?

Some people say there is no difference between Democrats and Republicans and that state and local races don't matter, it is the big federal races that are important. I say hogwash. How about these apples?
The proposed budget includes $250,000 for the county's small-business loan fund, as well as $20,000 to help build a business technology park in the county.
Corroon also asked for $400,000 to start a child immunization program in the county. The money would pay to immunize 11,000 low-income children under the age of 2 in the county health system. The budget asks for increased staffing levels at the county's after-school program in Kearns.
The green-friendly mayor wants to expand the county's recycling program, and asked for $4.5 million to make the voluntary program a required initiative countywide. The money would be used to place a blue recycling bin on the curb of every home in unincorporated county areas and their contract cities: Herriman, Bluffdale, Taylorsville, Cottonwood Heights, Holladay, Riverton and part of Murray.

How about that? Corroon cleans up the mess that Nancy Workman left in two years, and now wants to get to the progressive stuff he cares about.
The budget also includes money to continue Corroon's efforts to clean up county government. He asked for an associate director for the Administrative Services Department, a division Corroon recently created to provide oversight of several county divisions, such as fleet and personnel. Both divisions have been plagued with scandal over the past few years.

Corroon isn't just recycle bins either, he is law and order. This is something the Sheriff and the DA would get behind:
Corroon also asked to reopen one unit at the jail, which has 64 beds. He also wants to expand substance-abuse treatment programs, as well as make sure inmates are in jail until after their court date.

Of course, Randy Horiuchi wants to cut the jail proposal. All the time, we have people who don't show up to court who were released from jail because they only committed a misdemeanor and there isn't enough room/$ to keep them.

So if you believe as I do, your budget shows your values, then there is quite a lot of difference between Republicans and Democrats. Republicans in Congress cut taxes for the rich and programs for the poor, while spending pork in their district or for their bribers. Democrats want to increase spending on education and military personnel services. So if you say there is not a dime's difference, take a look at where each party wants your dimes to go.

Monday, October 30, 2006

story of the day

A money quote and picture, what could be better? I was in the Big Apple this weekend for a friend's wedding and got like 10 hours of sleep during the last three days, so excuse the lack of in depth analysis today.

"When investigators opened up the plush doll's skull, they discovered the drug stash [of 4 pounds] inside wrapped in plastic... While Elmo has never previously been linked to narcotics distribution or use, the Sesame Street character appears to have no teeth, which frequently is seen in heavy meth users."

The Smoking christened the doll "Hook Me Up Elmo," I call it "Meth on his Mind Elmo"