I always liked Tony Curtis as an actor. He was certainly a leading man. Yet, he never really had the manly style of a Sinatra or Martin. Still, he was talented. Married 6 times, Curtis led a stormy life off the set, and always seemed jealous of other leading actors. He died at 85. RIP.
If you were a student today, would you like to get a degree in three years? U Mass is one of the several colleges now offering students the opportunity:
A small number of highly motivated students have found ways to compress their college years by taking a heavy course load during the academic year and adding classes during the summers. About a dozen students a year have done this at UMass.
The senate race between Joe Manchin and John Raese–that has seen a surge by Rease and decline by Manchin–may be the result of changing state realities. According to Jay Cost, the reason Raese has a chance of becoming the first elected Republican Senator since the early 40s is because of the decline in the influence of the coal industry and, hence, Democrat voters. Note the decline:
The only county that is seeing an uptick in voters is Monongalia–that’s Morgantown territory. I have often made the argument that the increased population in the eastern portion of the panhandle will cause a political shift in the state–and most importantly in state government. It looks like we are seeing the effects.
The counties to the left are the top 10 coal counties in the state. McDowell is the hardest hit. One thing to note is that Manchin is spending a lot of time advertising with coal miners, and as a friend of coal. He is not getting the bang for his buck, and the argument appears lost on more and more of the voters–because they do not identify with coal interests.
We will need another poll to see how Raese is doing, but this race is shaping up to be an upset.
Things have not been going well for Governor Manchin in his Senate race against John Raese. Yesterday, RCP reported that Manchin said he would only repeal part of the health care bill–this despite the fact that well over 60% of West Virginians want the entire thing repealed. But, then, in the same story, Manchin said this:
Pressed on his support for repeal, Manchin clarified that he favored “repealing the things that are bad in that bill.” He ticked off a list of reforms in the law that he supports and asserted there is broad agreement in both parties for many of them. “Can’t you keep that as a good base?” he said, adding, “It’s a great bill.” He emphasized that he’s not calling for wholesale repeal and just wants to roll back parts of it but said, “You do need to.”
So, on the one hand he says that he would like to repeal part of the bill, but on the other hand, he says it was a “great bill.” The national mood over the bill, and the process of passage, has left a significant majority of the voters ready to give the Republicans another chance at exercising power.
It seems that the W. Va. voters are increasingly becoming dissatisfied with Manchin. Rasmussen released a poll today that shows Raese now leading Manchin by two points. This is the second poll in a row showing Raese with a lead. Thus, though within the margin of error, it looks like Raese is a serious contender, and has to be the odds on favorite to win as we head into the last 4 weeks of campaigning.
The new WSJ Weekend had an interesting story about how Gov. Manchin is having a rough time fending off his Senate opponent. This election is one of the most nationalized I have witnessed–perhaps ever. Snip:
In a poll released Tuesday by Democratic Public Policy Polling, Mr. Manchin was behind Mr. Raese by three points, yet had an approval rating of 59%. In a Rasmussen poll released Monday, Mr. Manchin had a seven-point edge over Mr. Raese compared to a 15 point lead in August.
In West Virginia, losing Democratic control of the Senate seat held by Sen. Robert Byrd for more than 50 years until his June death would be a big blow to the party and until recently, unthinkable by many here.
Mr. Manchin’s unexpected hurdles show that Democrats are navigating difficult terrain as they defend their Senate majority. The party’s prospects have improved in some states, such as Delaware, where GOP voters last week nominated a candidate dogged by financial questions. But polls suggest that the party is losing ground in several other states as well, among them Wisconsin, Connecticut and Ohio.
In West Virginia, where traditionally conservative Democratic voters outnumber registered Republicans two-to-one, recent polls show the president’s approval hovering around 30%, among the lowest in the nation.
Both Republicans and Democrats say national issues are casting a shadow over Mr. Manchin, a two-term governor who would keep his job if he lost. “I think this election is turning out to be a pure referendum on the Obama administration,” said Mike Stuart, chairman of the West Virginia Republican Party.
Update: Politico reports more bad news for Manchin.