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Today’s deep question: Will Icon’s “Filibuster Endurance” panties help Senate Dems stop Kavanaugh?



Friends and family often ask me why I enjoy politics as much as I do. “It’s important,” I tell them, “and it’s a privilege,” which it is. But sometimes it’s also so silly that its entertainment value far exceeds films, television, or any other outlet.

Take, for instance, Thinx label Icon Undies’ somewhat uninformed and but legit hilarious attempt at self-promotion by latching onto the upcoming confirmation fight over Brett Kavanaugh. They sent care packages to the women in the US Senate in order to help sustain them through a filibuster. Er … who wants to tell them?

It’s no secret that Brett Kavanaugh’s election to the Supreme Court could mean an about-face for women’s personal agency over our oft-leaky bods. That’s why we sent filibuster Endurance Packages to our female senators (even though we know an actual filibuster is less than likely). Complete with our moderate-absorbency bikini undies in Spice, tote bags, Aloha protein bars, and bottled water, the packages are meant to help our reps withstand long stints on the senate floor (sans bathroom breaks) defending women’s access to comprehensive, affordable, and quality healthcare. Our gesture might sound silly, but our motivation stems from a genuine dedication to providing women around the world with accessible, quality health information and care. Simply put, women’s health and wellbeing shouldn’t be a partisan issue.

An actual filibuster isn’t just “less than likely,” it’s flat-out off the table. Why? Because in November 2013, Harry Reid got most of the women receiving these packages to support his “nuclear option” to prohibit filibusters on presidential appointments. Then the same women backed Chuck Schumer’s attempt to filibuster Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation last year, prompting Mitch McConnell to go nuclear in return, prohibiting filibusters on Supreme Court nominations.

Had Democrats just, er, held their water on Gorsuch, these Filibuster Endurance Packages might have come in handy. Maybe Icon needs to come up with a male version of the same product line, right after they catch up to current Senate rules.

Michael Graham’s amused, but at least he helped Icon correct a grave injustice:

This is embarrassing…and on so many levels.

The feminist/activist underwear company Thinx, in an effort to oppose Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court, is sending ” filibuster Endurance Packages to our female senators,” they announced yesterday. …

Thinx lists all the women of the US Senate who’ll be receiving their anti-Kavanaugh care packages. Only one problem. There’s a name missing: NH’s Sen. Maggie Hassan.

Is this an oversight, or a statement about their view of Hassan’s feminist bona fides?

Icon sent a package off to Hassan shortly afterward, so she’s well prepared for a filibuster that will never take place. But at least Thinx and Icon got to demonstrate their product, right along with their ignorance. If there’s no such thing as bad publicity …

They’ll get a chance to use the products soon, too. Chuck Grassley says the Kavanaugh nomination will move to the floor in 70 days or less:

According to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, who will oversee the upcoming confirmation hearing, Kavanaugh should be fitted for his robe and confirmed to the Supreme Court within 70 days.

“Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most respected jurists in the country. He’s among the most qualified candidates to ever come before the Senate. I look forward to carefully reviewing his record,” Grassley said during a Committee business meeting Thursday morning. “Our process in the Senate Judiciary Committee will be thorough, modern, and efficient. We’ll use newer tools to review more material than we ever have before. All members of this committee will have far greater visibility into his record and judicial thinking than they have had with any previous nominee. And with this extra visibility, I can foresee no reason to stray from the timelines of previous high court nominations. We completed our work on the nomination of Justices Kagan and Gorsuch within 70 days. So, I expect to do the same in this case.”

Grassley wants to keep this process moving — and Democrats should as well. Obstructing the vote in any way that delays it to closer to Election Day will just remind Trump voters why they threw in with him two years earlier. That might turn out badly for Icon endurance-package recipients like Heidi Heitkamp and Claire McCaskill, who would be better off with Kavanaugh’s confirmation in the rear-view mirror.

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Forecast: GOP now more likely to have *at least* 54 Senate seats next year than to lose its majority




A nifty catch by Philip Klein, eyeballing the latest data from Nate Silver’s model (as of 5:15 p.m. ET). Check it yourself. Democrats momentarily have an 18.4 percent chance of gaining two seats and winning a majority next month. Whereas Republicans have a 9.1 percent chance of gaining three, a 5.5 percent chance of gaining four, a 3.2 percent chance of gaining five, a 1.4 percent of gaining six, a 0.7 percent chance of gaining seven, and a 0.3 percent chance of shooting the lights out and gaining eight (which would leave them one seat shy of a filibuster-proof majority, for what it’s worth). Add those up and you get a 20.2 percent chance of 54 or better.

Which can be summed up in four words: Justice Amy Coney Barrett.

Klein on the path to 54:

Though Republicans were always favorites to keep the Senate, their odds have improved in recent weeks, with three states in particular giving them a boost. Republicans are now considered “likely” to keep their seats in Texas and Tennessee and North Dakota seems ready to flip into the Republican column. Barring any other major upsets, victories in those three races would be enough for Republicans to keep the Senate — hence their 81.6 percent chances overall.

To get to 54, the most likely scenario would be that Republicans win the tossup states of Nevada and Missouri, and then surge to victory in Arizona and Florida (two races that are currently tilting Democrat, but well within range of Republican victory). Beyond that, they’d have to start flipping some seats that are currently considered “likely” to remain Democrat, such as Montana and West Virginia.

Eh, I don’t know if Montana and Indiana, the latter of which he neglected to mention, are all that “likely” to remain Democratic. They’re leaning that way, with both Jon Tester and Joe Donnelly clinging to three-point leads. But Montana hasn’t been polled in three weeks and the latest from Indiana has Donnelly up four but with just 44 percent of the vote. In fact, in none of the four polls dating back to August has Donnelly topped 44, suggesting that a lot of Hoosiers are thinking hard about whether to stick with the incumbent. It’s likely that the GOP will be disappointed somewhere on Election Night — Missouri, Nevada, and Arizona are all leading candidates — but going for one for two on Montana and Indiana seems doable.

Whichever way they do it, if they can get to 54 then Collins and Murkowski might well be nonfactors during the next SCOTUS battle. Flake won’t be in the Senate at all, of course. Trump really might have the arsenal he needs to fill a Ginsburg or Breyer vacancy with a conservative.

That’s the good news. The not-so-good news, also from Silver’s model:

Click the link and add up the different probable outcomes and you’ll see that the GOP has about the same odds of holding the House as Democrats do of winning … at least 54 seats. They’ve got a 10 percent chance of winning at least 60. Gonna be a lot of subpoenas for Pat Cipollone to cope with next year.

There are no new swing-state polls as I write this but keep an eye on the one of Arizona that’s currently in progress (yes, in progress) at the NYT’s site, the Upshot. As I write this at a little after 5 p.m. on the east coast, they’ve compiled a sample of 299 people — not large enough yet to give us confidence in the topline numbers but large enough to make it worth paying attention to. Currently Martha McSally leads Kyrsten Sinema by four points, 49/45. If that holds through the end of the poll, it would be the second straight survey showing McSally ahead after trailing for most of the race. (The previous poll had her up six.) Stay tuned.

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Midterm 2018 TEXAS: Robert (Beto) O’Rourke vs. Ted Cruz




Texas is Texas.

You don’t mess with Texas!

Texans don’t want a far left US Senator who lies about his background and police records, DUI included, and abuses everything the Lone Star State stands for.

Senator Ted Cruz is up by at least 5 points — but that is not enough.

Cruz is a real conservative and an intellectual giant. He has the highest possible ratings from conservative groups as a sitting US Senator.

We can’t let him down.

His opponent Beto (really Robert) O’Rourke isn’t Hispanic but he is loudly PROGRESSIVE.

He is a phony.

He is a Democratic Socialist and would spell doom for our Republic.

He wants open borders, more rights for criminals, and an end to the petroleum economy.

In Texas?

Trump won Texas by 9 points.

Cruz should win reelection by at least that amount.

Recall Cruz not only voted for Judge Kavanaugh but he articulately defended due process and innocent until proven guilty – the very hallmark of western jurisprudence.

We need him; America needs his voice in the Senate.

There has not been a Democrat to hold statewide office in Texas since 1994!

Keep it that way.

Cruz is a star in national politics and a firm vote for our side. He makes America first! And he is the best advocate for Texas bare none.

Turnout is critical.

Cruz MUST win.

Make this viral in every corner of Texas.

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Pat Robertson: C’mon, we’re not going to blow up a key Middle East alliance over one little murder




Lefties are marveling that a brand-name Christian conservative would be encouraging followers to look the other way at an assassination, but they’re forgetting Jesus’s parting words at the end of the Sermon on the Mount: “If you want to make an omelette, you’ve got to break a few eggs.”

Wait, am I misremembering? My youthful memories of the gospels are not the best. I think perhaps the savior’s actual parting words were “Velvet glove, iron fist.”

I mean, that at least sounds like Jesus.

Lotta mixed feelings about the evangelical turn towards hard-nosed realpolitik under Trump. On the one hand, the gripe about Christian conservatives used to be that they were forever trying to inject morals into the messy business of politics, made more uncomfortable by the fact that many millions of people disagree with some of their stances on sexual morality and resent their attempts to convert them into policy. Well, good news: Between Robertson’s take on the Khashoggi affair and the complete pass given to Trump on matters like Stormygate, there’s less moralizing than ever.

The bad news? I’m unclear from the clip below on how many murders Pastor Robertson would be willing to tolerate in the name of preserving the alliance and “$100 billion worth of arms sales,” as he notes in passing. Presumably his interest in the latter answers my question: Some of those weapons will be used to continue killing civilians in neighboring Yemen, as he doubtless knows. If Robertson’s willing to condone that in the name of checking Iran, naturally he would condone looking the other way at a lot of things, Khashoggi’s murder just one among them. Christianity’s nice and all but we’ve gotta live in the real world.

I honestly don’t know whether to call him a fraud or to salute him for taking a cold but sober view of the international chessboard.

There may be another reason why he and POTUS’s friends at CBN are rushing to provide cover here, though:

To some extent the Saudis’ problem is Trump’s problem. Right now Trump can afford to ignore the Democrats’ interest in finding out how much his and the Kingdom’s interests overlap. In three months, with the House likely in Democratic hands, it’ll be harder.

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