Republican Sen Rubio predicts Keystone and Iran Sanctions over Obama veto try…..

The Senator from Florida is talking tough….

He needs to….

In the last year he has had a steep drop in his numbers in the 2016 Republican Presidential Sweepstakes ….

Maybe this is his way to get back in the running?

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is predicting that the upcoming Republican-controlled Senate will pass laws imposing sanctions on Iran and approving the Keystone XL pipeline next year.

“I think we’ll have a supermajority, a veto-proof majority, to impose additional sanctions on Iran and to require the administration to come before Congress for approval of any deal that [President Barack Obama] has with Iran,” Rubio said in an interview airing on Thursday with NPR host Steve Inskeep. “I think the same is true of the Keystone pipeline, potentially.”

Rubio said he would be prepared to vote for imposing sanctions as soon as today. He aims for a bill that would require congressional approval for sanctions and impose them “upon a failure of the [nuclear] deal” within the next six months.

Fifty-four Republicans, 44 Democrats and 2 independents will make up the new Senate after a landslide midterm election that left Republicans with a clear majority.

In a New York Times Magazine interview also published Wednesday, Rubio, once a leading Republican advocate of comprehensive immigration reform, said that the GOP does not need to implement a pathway to citizenship before 2016.

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Apple being sued on iPhone storage claims….

Two guys from California are going after Apple Computer for false advertising in data storage in it’s iPhones, iPads and iPods…..

They point out that a 16 Gig iPhone has almost 3 Gigs of Operating System , which gives us users 20% less of what we paid for….

Good point guys…..

Apple is facing a lawsuit accusing the company of falsely advertising the storage capacity available in its iPhones, iPads and iPods.

The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in the northern district of California, says the massive data footprint of the iOS 8 operating software eats into the advertised capacity of Apple’s mobile devices.

“In reality, nothing close to the advertised capacity of the Devices is available to end users. Indeed, the discrepancy between advertised and available capacity is substantial and beyond any possible reasonable expectation,” the plaintiffs’ attorney Jonas Mann wrote in a court filing.

It’s common practice for consumer electronics manufacturers to tout the total memory or storage capacity of their devices excluding pre-loaded operating software or applications. The plaintiffs’ complaint said Apple does not let users insert memory cards into its devices to increase their storage capacity, a feature that is offered by some rival smartphone manufacturers…..

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Note….

How about all the hoops you have to go thru to get rid of the embedded U-2 album that comes with the phone?

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John McCain seeks to wipe out his states Tea Party…..

Politico has a piece out thatf ocuses on the GOP Civil War in the state of Arizona…..

Namly the effort by the GOP US Senator from the state’s mopves to replace mopst of the Tea party operatives from postions of power….

If this catchs on around the country the move to the extreme right within the party nationally will have taken back by the stablishment and COMPROMISE will again be possible much more in the nations government….

McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, has long faced opposition from conservatives who view him as too moderate, particularly on immigration. During the height of the tea party movement in 2010, McCain stared down a spirited primary challenge from J.D. Hayworth, a conservative former congressman. Many in the state expect the senator to face another primary challenge in 2016.

Until this year, however, McCain aides had never seriously considered a concerted effort to remake the state GOP apparatus, which has traditionally been dominated by his conservative antagonists. That changed after the January censure, which rapped the senator for having an insufficiently conservative record that was “harmful” to Arizona.

“He was very unhappy with the censure and wanted to make sure it never happened again,” said Mike Hellon, McCain’s deputy campaign manager in 2010.

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image….abcnews.go.com

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The Pope and the US Conservatives…Increasing distance….

The Hill is out with a piece today about how a progressive Catholic Pope is saying things that are NOT what American Conservative ‘s are likely to be happy with….

Pope Francis is increasingly driving a wedge between conservatives and the Catholic Church.

The magnetic pope has sparked new enthusiasm around the world for the church and has flexed his political muscles internationally, most recently by helping to engineer a new relationship between the United States and Cuba.

But Francis’s agenda, which also includes calls to address income inequality and limit climate change, is putting him at odds with Republicans, including GOP Catholics in the United States.

Hours after President Obama announced moves to ease trade and travel restrictions to Cuba, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a practicing Catholic and potential 2016 presidential candidate, criticized the deal and Francis’s role in it.

“I would also ask His Holiness to take up the cause of freedom and democracy, which is critical for a free people, for a people to truly be free,” Rubio told reporters.

Rubio said that Cubans “deserve the same chances to have democracy as the people of Argentina have had, where he comes from, as the people of Italy have, where he now lives.”

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President Obama keeps at emptying the Guantánamo Military Prison…..

Six years ago a incoming President Barack Obama promised to the world that he would shutdown the military detention facility at the tip of Cuba which hold men detained from American’s fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq against militants….

Gito is still there….

Congress has been adament that the men held there NOT be brought to the American mainland….

The President and his Attorney General have moved to have several of the deteanines TRIED in American courts in New York and Washington…But that is it…..

In recent months there have continual movement of detainies being shipped off the Cuban island to other countries….(There are those who are not happy with this) There are still over a 100 being held now….

The United States transferred five detainees from the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to Kazakhstan, the Defense Department announced late Tuesday. It was the last in a flurry of year-end moves as President Obama sought to fulfill his promise to close the American-run prison.

The five former detainees — three Yemenis and two Tunisians — are “free men” for all intents and purposes after the transfer, a senior official in the Obama administration said. Officials declined to disclose the security assurances reached between the United States and Kazakhstan or detail how the men would be prevented from returning to battlefields in Afghanistan or Pakistan.

With the move, 28 detainees have been transferred this year from Guantánamo to other countries, including Uruguay and Afghanistan, administration officials said.

It is the biggest number since 2009, when Mr. Obama assumed office and began trying to make good on his campaign promise to close the prison, which top administration officials have characterized as a blight on the country’s international standing. There are 127 prisoners at Guantánamo.

Some Defense Department officials have expressed concern that prisoners released from the prison may return to take on the American troops who remain in Afghanistan…..

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House GOPer’s are trying to keep their act together already….

It’s gonna be a rough next two years, eh?

The leadership of America’s House of Representitives is already busy …..

One guy is going out the door he thought he wouldn’t have to….

And another is trying to hold on to a spot he MIGHT have…..

All this and the party having to deal with a President who is now free to engage them at little risk for the next two years…(Well actually…Less than a year….Once Hillary declares things will change for President Obama) and their need to get somethings done for the 2016 elections which will have Democrats coming to polls unlike last months midterms….

Republican leaders moved forcefully on Tuesday to control the damage from a pair of scandals that have suddenly disrupted the party as it prepares to take full control on Capitol Hill.

In back-to-back moves, House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) pushed out Rep. Michael G. Grimm (R-N.Y.), who pleaded guilty last week to federal tax-evasion charges, and backed Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), who acknowledged that he once ­addressed a white-supremacist group before coming to Congress.

Some Republicans praised Boehner for his actions, expressing their eagerness to start the new Congress in a position of strength to fully exploit their gains in the midterm elections. But others worried about the potential political fallout from a fresh racial controversy for a party eager to show its broadening appeal to minorities ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

John Weaver, a GOP consultant who advised the presidential campaigns of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), said in an e-mail that Scalise “cannot serve in leadership in our party as we’re in the process of trying to show the American people we can handle the burden of governing, especially in a country so divided across all demographic lines.”

The twin controversies could also derail the carefully laid plans of Boehner and the incoming Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), to shape the party’s message and Washington’s political agenda in the coming weeks…..

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House Majority Whip Scalise Update late 12/30/14…..

image…. blogs.wsj.com

Are the Rightwingnuts even throwing this guy under the bus?

House GOP leader regrets speaking to supremacist group

Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) said Tuesday he regrets speaking to a white supremacist group as a state legislator in 2002 and that it was a mistake.

In a statement released by his office Tuesday, Scalise officially acknowledged that he spoke to the group while trying to “build support” for a plan to cut spending and tax hikes.

“One of the many groups that I spoke to regarding this critical legislation was a group whose views I wholeheartedly condemn,” he said.
“It was a mistake I regret, and I emphatically oppose the divisive racial and religious views groups like these hold.”

Scalise if fighting to keep his job as the third-ranking Republican in the House following revelations that surfaced last weekend on a local Louisiana blog….

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Boehner, McCarthy stand by Scalise

House Republican leadership is standing by Majority Whip Steve Scalise (La.) after the No. 3 House Republican admitted to speaking to a white supremacist group in 2002.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) both issued statements Tuesday afternoon voicing their support for Scalise as majority whip.

“More than a decade ago, Representative Scalise made an error in judgment, and he was right to acknowledge it was wrong and inappropriate,” Boehner said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.
“Like many of my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, I know Steve to be a man of high integrity and good character. He has my full confidence as our Whip, and he will continue to do great and important work for all Americans,” Boehner added….

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Civil rights group: Scalise must go

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a leading civil rights group, is calling on House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) to resign from his leadership post after revelations that he spoke to a white supremacist group in 2002.

In a post on the SPLC website, titled “Steve Scalise’s Denials Are Not Believable,” senior fellow Mark Potok points to the example of former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.), who resigned his leadership post in 2002 after praising the presidential campaign of segregationist Strom Thurmond.
“After singing the praises of segregationist Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.), Lott was forced to resign his leadership post,” Potok writes. “Now Steve Scalise should do the same.”

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New House GOP Spin: Scalise Hanging With Racists Helps Him Work With Conservatives

Erick Erickson (Diary) @ Red State….

The House GOP will stand by Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA)76%, signaling they will hold their leadership to lesser standards than they would conservatives.

Now they are just rubbing everybody’s nose in it.

Their latest spin, courtesy of the Washington Post, is that Scalise’s ability to connect with racists makes him a bridge builder between conservatives and Speaker Boehner.

I kid you not.

From the article:

Racist elements have long been a part of political life in Louisiana and throughout the Deep South, but Scalise’s skillful ability to balance them with his party’s modern-day need to appeal to a rapidly diversifying electorate helped enable his rise.

and

One of Scalise’s assets in the leadership is that he has been able to sway rabble-rousing members who often cause headaches for House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio). On the House floor, he will sit down next to a colleague he is trying to win over, place his arm around his or her shoulder, lean in close and talk.

Scalise’s political associates say he tolerates political outsiders and even some gadflies more than most leaders, eager always to turn anyone into an ally. That persona has fueled his climb to power. It has also invited controversy.

In other words, because Scalise is confortable in front of David Duke style groups, he knows how to navigate those wackado conservatives in Congress….

Source….

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President Obama moves his DIsapproval numbers down…..

The Democrats lose running AWAY from the guy and he does BETTER…..

As I have said here?

He’s moving up with the American people….

It may not last…

But it’s going for the good for him right now…..

Something remarkable just happened to Barack Obama’s poll numbers: For the first time since September 2013 — over 450 days ago — as many people approve of his job performance as disapprove.

Politicians generally hope to be “above water,” having more people approve of your work than disapprove. The converse, naturally, is to be “under water,” flailing and gasping for breath and, more often than not, sinking. Since September 2013, Obama has been underwater in Gallup polling, with more people saying he’s doing a bad job than saying he’s doing a good one. Until Gallup’s most recent data, out on Tuesday (and aggregating responses from the last three days of polling). At this point, 48 percent of Americans approve and 48 percent disapprove of Obama — not exactly fantastic, but better than he’s been…..

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Note…..

Current Gallup and Rasmussen Polls have the President @ 48% Approval and 48% and 50% disapproval respectively…..Here…..

image…theobamadiary.com/AP

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US Attorney looking at NY State Assembly Speaker Silver…

This one came up a while ago and disappeared ….

Shelly Silver is one of the three guys who run the State of New York along with Republican State Senate Leader Dean Skelos and Governor Andrew Cuomo….

Governor Cuomo shut down an effort to investigate his State legislators…..

The leads from the effort where forwarded to office of Preet Bharrra the US Attorney for the Southern District….

Silver has been known to get paid money by a Law firm that Silver has NOT listed…..He’s supposed to do so….

Hummmm?

 

Federal authorities are investigating substantial payments made to the State Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, by a small law firm that seeks real estate tax reductions for commercial and residential properties in New York City, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Prosecutors from the United States attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York and agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation have found that the law firm, Goldberg & Iryami, P.C., has paid Mr. Silver the sums over roughly a decade, but that he did not list that income on his annual financial disclosure forms, as required, the people said.

The prosecutors, from the office of the United States attorney, Preet Bharara, and the F.B.I. agents were seeking to determine precisely what Mr. Silver, a Manhattan Democrat, has been doing for the payments, the people said. Spokesmen for the F.B.I. and Mr. Bharara’s office declined to comment….

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image….streetsblog.org

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Obama staffer knocks Jeb Bush for being out of Politics….

Here we go folks…..

The snipping begins…..

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) has likely been out of politics too long to run a modern campaign for the presidency, a top White House staffer said in an interview released Monday night.

“Jeb Bush, it’s been a long time since he’s run for office. Politics has changed dramatically since his last race,” said Dan Pfeiffer, senior adviser to President Obama, according to The Huffington Post.
“He may be able to,” Pfeiffer said later of Bush mounting a viable campaign, “but politics and technology and communication are changing so fast that all the models we used in our 2008 campaign had to be massively updated just for 2012.”

“I think it will be very challenging for someone who has not been in prominent public life in the age of Twitter to go out on the campaign trail,” he said…..

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Political Roundup for December 30, 2014…2020 Census numbers point to gains for the South and West..Red Racing Horses….

by: shamlet

Welcome to our last roundup of 2014. Our first roundup of 2015 will be Friday, and we will be back to a regular 5-day-a-week schedule starting next week. 

President:

Sanders: The nominally Independent socialist Senator from Vermont says he will decide by March on whether to seek the D presidential nomination.

Congress:

UT-Sen, UT-Gov: Retiring UT-4 Rep. Jim Matheson (D) is likely to take a part-time position at the University of Utah, a job that would not preclude him from a widely-anticipated Senate or Governor run in 2016.

LA-1: Rep. Steve Scalise (R) is under fire after acknowledging that he spoke at a white supremacist group meeting while a member of the State House in 2002. Scalise supposedly delivered his standard stump speech on fiscal responsibility to a group founded by David Duke. Scalise says he was understaffed at the time and was unaware of the group’s ideology.

2020 Redistricting: We have our 2014 population estimates from the census bureau, and that means we also have estimates on which states will gain and lose house seats next redistricting cycle. 9 seats seem set to shift, with Texas gaining 3 and AZ, CA, CO, FL, NC, and OR each gaining one. The losers are AL, IL, MI, MN, NY, OH, PA, RI, and WV, which drop a seat each.

Governor

KY-Gov: State Supreme Court Justice Will Scott (R) is stepping down from the bench in anticipation of a likely run for Governor next year. Scott will join Ag Commissioner James Comer (R) and ex-Louisville councilman Hal Heiner (R) in the primary. I would like to remind Scott and other Kentucky Republicans considering piling into this primary that we have no candidate for AG or Auditor and only “C” listers running for SoS and Treasurer.

ND-Gov: Republicans in the North Dakota State Legislature are considering a proposal to strip Governors of their ability to fill Senate vacancies, instead mandating a special election within 60 days. The measure is clearly aimed at stopping Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D) from filling her seat with another Democrat if she succesfully runs for Governor in 2016. Heitkamp is widely speculated to be considering a run as an alternative to a tough 2018 re-election race.

GA-Gov: The office of Gov. Nathan Deal (R) is pushing back against unsubstantiated rumors that the newly re-elected Governor will be indicted in January, calling them “absurd”.

CA-Gov ’18: Ex-LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) is taking steps to prepare for a gubernatorial run in 4 years, which likely precludes a 2016 Senate run…..

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Education testing requirements will probably be cut ….

Be it No Child Left Behind or Common Core Federal Educational programs?

The amount of testing will be the subject of Congressional and State Republican efforts review….

Responding to complaints from with the nation’s educational system and parents about too much time and effort spent on the testing as the expense of learning ….The incoming Republican majority (and some Democrats) in Congress are ready to make cuts….

The NCLB program was introduced by George Bush…

Republicans on the Hill are finding unusual common ground with teachers unions about an overthrow of the annual testing mandate embedded in No Child Left Behind.

Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee is making reauthorization of the law one of his biggest priorities — and testing is expected to take center stage. He plans to tackle the issue during a hearing early in the new year. Under serious consideration: slashing the number of federally required tests or even doing away with them all together.
Story Continued Below

This political alliance is part of a larger nationwide movement, buoyed by a grass-roots crusade led by parents and teachers who reject the testing regimes that they say have come to dominate public schools for the past decade.

“We are actively exploring the question of whether the federal mandate on annual tests is warranted,” one GOP aide said. The goal is to give states more flexibility in how they track student progress, report those results to the public and hold schools accountable for all kids.
A bipartisan bill gaining momentum among lawmakers would give states grants to audit their testing regimes — and weed out unnecessary exams.

“Annual statewide assessments are critical to ensuring that all students are held to the same high standards and parents, teachers and communities have the information they need about how their children are doing every year,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan said when the bill was introduced. “However, in many places, the amount of testing that is redundant or simply not helpful for instruction has become a real problem.”

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The Defense Budget has problems….

The cost of acquiring NEW stuff has jumped up by $500 Billion…..

That while the plans are for cuts in benefits for the troops and their families….

The number of troops have been dropping (62,000) since the drawdown began in Iraq and Afghanistan…So the number of people needing benefits is dropping….

But the buying of new weapons systems has not….

The push for further benefits cuts is under pressure….

The Pentagon successfully pressed Congress to continue reducing costs for 2015, by again holding the pay raise to 1 percent, reducing housing allowances by five percent, and increasing pharmaceutical co-pays.

Military groups fear there are more cuts to come. They are also angry that the Pentagon is going after compensation to troops, after more than a decade of sustained warfare and repeated deployments.

“Not only has the rate of growth for personnel compensation growth slowed — it has gone negative for the last three years, from 2011 on,” said Retired Navy Adm. Norb Ryan, president of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), in a recent interview with The Hill.

But Pentagon leaders say they just can’t continue cutting troops, and that ballooning benefit costs would ultimately leave insufficient money to maintain combat readiness.

“Adjustments are going to have to be made because if they’re not made down into the future then we will essentially end up with a hollow force. We will have a lot of benefits and pay, but there’ll be no money for readiness,” said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Dec. 7.

Defense budget expert Todd Harrison agreed, and said that in the face of $500 billion in defense cuts mandated under sequestration, there were only so many levers that could be pulled in order to bring the budget down…..

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After action report on Healthcare….Kathleen Sebelius

A quiet year after the Affordable Healthcare program roll out….

We hear from the Health and Human Service Secretary at the time…..ex Governor Kathleen Sebelius…..And she says it ‘was a battle worth fighting’…..

There are plenty of Democrats who have had second thoughts about the Affordable Care Act — about the timing of the law’s passage, the decision to move ahead without Republican votes, the unqualified promises that everyone could keep their health care plans, and, of course, the competence of the launch. But for all of the political agony Sebelius went through — first during the bitter congressional debates that led to its passage, then during the botched rollout — she’s not much for second-guessing.

Sebelius does have ideas on what would help future political leaders launch programs that represent a complicated technological undertaking. She says the contracting process needs to be overhauled so the promising start-up gurus can be tapped, not just the same old companies that get the contracts mainly because they’ve worked with the federal government before. And she says the technology teams need to work directly with the officials who know the policy, something that didn’t happen enough before the enrollment launch last year.

But unlike Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Sebelius has no regrets about turning to health care reform right at the beginning of Barack Obama’s presidency. Schumer argues that the Democrats addressed the “wrong problem” by taking on health care reform in 2009 rather than keeping their focus on the recession. Sebelius, however, sticks to the view Obama and most Democratic leaders held at the time: If health care reform didn’t get done then, with a newly elected president and Democrats at the height of their power, it was never going to happen.

“I certainly would have much preferred a very smooth rollout and robust enrollment from day one. But I also feel very good about the fact that this president was able to get a law passed that 70 years of debate prior to him, of both Republican and Democratic presidents, had failed to do,” Sebelius said.

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image…abcnews.go.com

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Hillary Clinton the most ‘Admired’ Woman of Year for the 13th time….

Not bad going into less than 2 years before the next Presidential vote….

Who thinks THIS is NOT gonna be part of her campaign for the White House?

 

Hillary Clinton has been named the most admired woman in the world for the 13th straight year in a Gallup poll of Americans released Monday.

The results are an indication of how long the former secretary of State has been admired in the public sphere, as she heads toward a likely presidential campaign.

In addition to being the most admired for the last 13 years, Clinton also has held the title for 17 of the last 18 years, stretching back to her time as first lady. Her streak was interrupted only by first lady Laura Bush in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Clinton has been named most admired in the Gallup poll more times than anyone else. She beat Eleanor Roosevelt by six victories…..

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image…foxnews.com

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Republican Voter turnout wasn’t strong in the 2014 Midterm’s either….

The fFix @ The Washington Post further clarifies the numbers which point to low voter turnout in the 2014 Midterm elections by BOTH sides….

So people who want to tell you that the Republicans had a ‘wave’ event are full of it….

In four of the last seven House election cycles, Republicans have received more votes than Democrats (and more seats in five of the seven). Three of those four were in lower-turnout midterms. Democrats got more votes in one midterm this century: 2006, when Republican turnout was lower. But even in that year, more people came out to vote in House races, in terms of raw numbers, than in 2014.

This year’s low turnout wasn’t just because Democrats didn’t have a strong message. Republicans didn’t appear to have a very strong get-to-the-polls message either….

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