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Archive for December, 2011

Interesting articles or postings – 12/29/2011

December 29th, 2011 No comments

Here’s a list of articles or blog postings I have found interesting from my review of subscriptions today – 12/29/2011. The news covers most of the things I follow including politics, local events, media information, and general interest. While I try to follow a lot of things, I probably miss some things. If you have something interesting add it in the comments section of this posting. If you have comments on some of the items feel free to drop them in the comments section. Just remember to follow the Guidelines. Read more…

Interesting articles or postings – 12/28/2011

December 28th, 2011 No comments

Here’s a list of articles or blog postings I have found interesting from my review of subscriptions today – 12/28/2011. The news covers most of the things I follow including politics, local events, media information, and general interest. While I try to follow a lot of things, I probably miss some things. If you have something interesting add it in the comments section of this posting. If you have comments on some of the items feel free to drop them in the comments section. Just remember to follow the Guidelines. Read more…

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Interesting articles or postings – 12/27/2011

December 27th, 2011 No comments

Here’s a list of articles or blog postings I have found interesting from my review of subscriptions today – 12/27/2011. The news covers most of the things I follow including politics, local events, media information, and general interest. While I try to follow a lot of things, I probably miss some things. If you have something interesting add it in the comments section of this posting. If you have comments on some of the items feel free to drop them in the comments section. Just remember to follow the Guidelines. Read more…

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Interesting articles or postings – 12/26/2011

December 26th, 2011 No comments

Here’s a list of articles or blog postings I have found interesting from my review of subscriptions today – 12/26/2011. The news covers most of the things I follow including politics, local events, media information, and general interest. While I try to follow a lot of things, I probably miss some things. If you have something interesting add it in the comments section of this posting. If you have comments on some of the items feel free to drop them in the comments section. Just remember to follow the Guidelines.
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Another day, another poll

December 19th, 2011 No comments

121073609Another poll was released yesterday from Public Policy Polling, a Democratic based polling firm that actually seems to bias towards Republican candidates according to Nate Silver. In the poll, Ron Paul took the lead from Newt Gingrich who actually slid pretty substantially from 27% on Dec. 5th to 14% in this latest poll. The poll was taken just after the last Republican debate in Sioux City and included Sunday after the release of the Des Moines Register endorsement of Mitt Romney. What’s interesting about the PPP poll is that it solidifies the pattern we’ve seen of lead change in the Republican primary in Iowa that has gone from Bachmman to Perry to Cain to Gingrich to possibly Paul, according to the Real Clear Politics tracking page. While Paul has not emerged as the latest leader, he’s only a point under Gingrich and has shown a steady climb to the top spot. So what does this latest poll really indicate going into Christmas week?

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Sometimes increasing voter turnout is not a good thing

December 17th, 2011 2 comments

Voter_Apathy_PartyToday Victor Landa wrote a good column in the Express-News as a follow-up to last Saturday’s presentation of a Citizen’s Bill of Rights and Responsibilities presented by graduate students at UTSA’s College of Public Policy. He picked up on a suggestion made by Phyllis Ingram, head of San Antonio’s League of Women Voters, that to increase voter turnout we should consolidate the elections to a single day. On the surface, that sounds like a good and rational idea. After all, if you just went in one time to take care of all civic business more people would turn out to vote. Kind of a one-stop shop for civic engagement. Sounds simple but in reality, it’s more complex than it might seem. More importantly, would it really increase civic engagement or just produce better numbers?

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Iowa and beyond

December 15th, 2011 No comments

IowastateTonight is the final debate between the GOP presidential primary candidates before the Iowa Caucuses on Jan. 3rd. After that, there’s nothing between the candidates and the caucus other than a lot of open roads, corn fields and a bunch of towns full of Iowans. Just check out Gov. Perry’s 44-city, two week bus tour throughout Iowa. At least he’s taking some time off for Christmas. But he’s not alone as every single candidate will be criss-crossing the state, possibly passing each other on the roads or towns. December must be a strange time in Iowa if you’re really not interested in politics. With all the attention focused on the state and with a field of six candidates courting votes, you’re probably ready for caucus day to come and go so you can get back to normal life. So is Iowa really giving us that deeper glimpse into the candidates?

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Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act–Do we still need it?

December 14th, 2011 No comments

VRAVoteToday Aaron Blake of the Washington Post posted an excellent article entitled “Texas redistricting case: Five things you need to know.” The article is a great read for everyone who may not have been keeping up with Texas redistricting. After all, it’s not the most interesting holiday party topic these days unless you’re a policy wonk or politician. Amazingly it does come up at most of the candidate parties I’ve been to so far. Yes, we do love our Texas politics. The article walks towards what might possibly happen with decisions from SCOTUS and the two district courts involved. More importantly, the article hints at something several who have been watching this process think might happen. That is that Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act might possibly be invalidated and thrown out, allowing for all states under preclearance requirements today to avoid that step in the process. So how important is Section 5 and do we still need it after 3 decades?

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The Downtown Bug

December 3rd, 2011 No comments

downtownSA_Commerce_RiverwalkThis past month has made me realize we may be turning the corner into the “Decade of Downtown,” as proclaimed by Mayor Julian Castro and described by Andi Rodriguez of the Downtown Alliance. Ever since I moved downtown over two years ago, I’ve never seen as much activity as I have during this past year. What’s even more encouraging is the level of conversation by people about downtown and what’s happening here. More of my friends are asking about living downtown and where are the places to live, work, play and eat. People are buzzing about the possibility of a grocery store and new transportation options. More and more people seem to be getting bitten by the “downtown bug.”

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The strangeness of the Iowa caucus

December 1st, 2011 No comments

iowa_caucusToday Rasmussen released their latest poll showing Gingrich in the lead with 38% trailed by Romney at 17%, Paul and Cain tied at 8%, followed by the pack around the 4% mark. That’s an interesting spread with each segment half the distance of its leader. If we held an election today, Gingrich wins this race outright with no questions. But the first contest is not an election. In fact, it’s probably one of the most bizarre forms of democracy we have in our system – the caucus. So strange is this process that normal campaign tactics can’t be used. In fact, if you go into Iowa, the early state that uses the caucus system, with a normal game plan you’ll probably get your clock cleaned and come out whipped and drained. So, while Gingrich has the lead for now, two campaigns trailing in the back might actually make a good showing in IA.

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