Viva Hate!

Life? Don't talk to me about life!

2016 Campaign Starts Now- Cost of Living EP
I did a few posts this year about when candidates attack.  Of course the worst part about a candidate coming to town is a candidate coming to your town.

At least that is my takeaway from a Marshalltown, IA newspaper article that I thought had potential to go viral, and feel is worth sharing.

Marshalltown is a town of 27,000- so it is a decent sized city, helped by the fact that it is midway between Des Moines and Iowa City, and in the framework of Iowa, it is the 16th largest city.  So important.

It is also well known as being home of Billy Sunday- maybe the most famous of the early 20th century evangelical preachers.  Sunday was a baseball player who used the fame to combat the devil alcohol and sexuality.  Another famous person from the city was Cap Anson.  Anson was the first of baseball's greatest players, though his legacy now is more known for being the man who segregated the sport.

Marshalltown also too is the home of Eugene Debs' two-time running mate Ben Hanford, and unexpectedly, home of some of the best local music acts.

In any case, this is worth sharing:

The dust has settled from several high profile candidate appearances in January featuring former President Bill Clinton, Republican presidential candidates Ben Carson and Donald Trump, and former Secreatary of State and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

All put Marshalltown in the national limelight.

But the exposure cost the city $7,071.

hose were expenses the Marshalltown Police and Fire Departments said they incurred for duties ranging from traffic and crowd control to counting visitors entering public facilities.

The only candidate who paid was Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., seeking the Democrat Party's nomination for president. And he is the only one without a Super Political Action Committee funding his campaign.

Trump and Hillary Clinton appearances

By far the highest expense was Trump's visit to the Marshalltown High School Roundhouse early evening Jan. 26, which cost the MPD $3,596 in police overtime, according to an email sent to the Times-Republican last week by Marshalltown Police Chief Mike Tupper.

Trump, a billionaire real estate mogul, drew 1,486 visitors, according to Marshalltown Fire Chief David Rierson.

To a lesser extent, Hillary Clinton's event at Miller MIddle School later the same evening cost $2,474.

She drew 400, said Rierson.

"These costs do not include the salary expenses for salaried employees who do not receive overtime compensation but still worked the events," said Tupper. "These costs also do not include the expenses (time) that were incurred planning and preparing for these events.

Carson and former President Clinton

"Additionally we incurred $800 in expenses for Carson's event at the Best Western Regency Inn Jan. 24, and $201 in expenses for former President Bill Clinton's event (campaigning for spouse Hillary) at Marshalltown Community College Jan. 15," said Tupper.

Tupper said not all candidates requested services and the MPD generally received requests from those who have secret service protection.

Sen. Sanders

"Occasionally, a candidate without secret service protection makes a request, but these are not common and are generally minimal," he said.

"Sen. Sanders was in Jan. 10," (at the BWRI). Tupper said. "He does not have secret service protection and did request security assistance. The Sanders campaign paid. That is a welcome deviation from the norm."

Marshalltown Fire Department

Fire chief David Rierson told the T-R in an email Jan. 29 it had incurred roughly $675 in expenses.

"Since deputy chief Johnson and I are salaried, no overtime was incurred," he said.

Rierson could be see dutifully counting people as they entered political events as part of fire safety concerns.

Offsetting city expenses

However, money spent at numerous Marshalltown businesses and elsewhere by campaigns was noticed.

"The visits from presidential candidates certainly had an impact on the Marshalltown economy," Lynn Olberding, executive director of the Marshalltown Area Chamber of Commerce told the Times-Republican last month.

"(There were) extra visitors at hotels, facility and room rentals, stops in convenience stores and gas stations, restaurants and entertainment."

Marshalltown's image enhanced

Marshalltown's image gained too, she said.

"Visits from Democratic and Republican candidates has shown the media what a great community Marshalltown is and the important role our diverse community makes in the political arena. Iowa continues to be the first in the nation caucus for a reason and every four years, communities like ours play a part on the national stage as candidates vie for votes," she said.

The TL;DR version is that Bernie Sanders paid his way as he did require security (He did not have Secret Service detail as others did).  Whereas the people who have the most, also cost the most- Trump left a bill for $3600 in police overtime and Hillary for an event of 400 incurred almost $2500.

All told $7000 for visits from The Donald, President and Secretary Clinton separately, and Ben Carson.

2016- The Year the Music Died
I wanted to take 5 seconds to mention this.

With all of the music deaths this year and I have been to busy to make any mention.  Which means of course, there will have to be a David Bowie post.  Of course, there has been Lemmy (who i do like more than you expect), Paul Kantner (who I like more than is hip) and Maurice White (who fits in both categories).  Glenn Frey (sorry), Dale Griffin (love the Hoople) and Alan Rickman (not a musician that i know of, but love the same) and surely others I have forgot.

In any case, had I the time, i would have blogged, but I do want to mention something I will miss. has hit the dust.

For awhile now, it looked like legislation might close it down and it did. Per Radio World

Online radio streaming service Live365 is officially off the air and the Web today.

In December, we reported that the site was scaling back its services and laying off staff due to financial problems. Their issues were compounded by the recent Copyright Royalty Board rate decision.

This was not the first time that Live365 had battled the CRB. In 2009, the streamer filed a lawsuit in federal court calling into whether CRB judges were appointed in violation of the U.S. Constitution’s separation of powers.

Now a farewell message on its website reads: “Seventeen sweet years ago, it was something of a revolution to let anyone launch their own station. Anyone with something to say or play. Live365 provided the tools. Their talent brought the audience. We were one of the first. Happy we are not the last. The spirit of 300+ employees over the years, our hundred thousand webcasters, and their hundred million dedicated listeners lives on. THANK YOU for being here.”

- See more at:
I am going to miss Live365 as it was one of my go-tos for streaming music.

I may sound old fogey, but I liked the idea of a broadcaster putting together a playlist.

I think it is so much better than algorithim based programming.

Which I should like.  Pandora seems so obvious with their choices.  Last FM is almost too obscure with its selections.  I am trying to like Last FM (and I do) but am still struggling a bit with trying to get it to do what I want it.  Slacker FM seems to be the most friendly of the second tier (in fame) of these players.

Of course, there are sites like Live 365 and there are some playlist options through Last.FM.  There's Sirius of course, and Public radio stations (which I stream alot) and the old standby BBC (particularly BBC6, which is right down my alley and has musicians like Guy Garvey, Jarvis Cocker, Iggy Pop, Don Letts, Cerys Matthews and Tom Robinson as DJs, as well as solid tastemakers like Gideon Coe, Steve Lamacq and Marc Riley to name a few.

In any case, I am never going to hurt for music, but I will remember Live365 fondly for the obvious and not so obvious.  There was radio Eponymous (Britpop heavy but also jazz) radio Nowhere (great indie), In the Red Radio (a lot of In the Red Record artists) Halliwax (Surf based in Novia Scotia) Rockin Bones (rockabilly) Technical Difficulites (industrial) Pack Moose Radio (classic rock and blues) Club 80s with DJ Lex (extended 80s mixes) and so many more.

2016 Campaign Starts Now- It's the Law (Cheat to Win remix)
From the gang who gave you "If you don't caucus, you might be committing voter fraud.  At best, we will send a letter to your neighbors letting them know you didn't participate".

It's Ben Carson dropped out, so vote for us not him.

It included a tweet from one of  Politics' biggest heel Steve King

Carson looks like he is out. Iowans need to know before they vote. Most will go to Cruz, I hope.

This story has went national.  The most obvious story being Donald Trump asking for a Do-Over since the only way anyone could beat Trump would be to cheat.

Rush Limbaugh accuses the Rubio campaign of orchestrating this.  No surprise for anyone who has listened to Rush in the last six months, he generally favors Cruz and rails against Rubio on a daily basis.

The controversy stems from Dr Carson saying he wasn't going to New Hampshire or South Carolina after Iowa.  He was going to Florida for a change of clothes and then to DC for the National Prayer Breakfast- the annual event where in 2013 he essentially started to become a household name.

Which means he wasn't going to NH or SC, but it didn't mean he wasn't going to New Hampshire.

You won't often find me defending Cruz or King, but I will lay out the points that will say this is a nonstory.

1- Carson ended up with 9.3% of the vote.  That is what the poll numbers said would happen.  In fact, it's better than most polls said.  He was polling around 7-8% in most circumstances, and one of the last polls showed him as low as 3%.  Carson really hadn't polled better than 10% since December.

2- The news on this came out late.  Those not aware of the caucus process might not be aware that you have to be there by 7pm.  This story broke after that (Even King's tweet is timestamped 7:20).  I realize that people check their phone constantly, but I was not aware of the story until i was at home from the caucus and in my sweatpants, and believe me, I was tuned in.

3- It would be nonsensical to drop out mere hours before the actual voting.  Even the most "writing on the wall" guys like O'Malley and Santorum waited until the results were in.  It would make no sense to wait until the last minute to drop out.  You would have either done it long ago like Perry and Walker or at least waited.

4-This anecdotal, but I have a friend who was a precinct chairman for Cruz and when he says there was no concerted effort to convince people Dr Carson dropped out, then I believe him.

I suppose I should admit that I do think Cruz could be the next nominee, though others are quick to remind me, that though he seems electable because he is a red-stater who is loved by the fundamentalists and the Tea Party (Huckabee) and a Senator whose family values agenda has brought him a great deal of attention (Santorum), nothing means nothing.

2016 Campaign Starts Now: It's the Law
Dear Iowa voter,

It is your responsibility to caucus on Monday night.

If you don't caucus on Monday, you may be committing voter fraud.

In fact, if you caucus on Monday and don't vote for Ted Cruz, you may still be committing voter fraud.

Ted Cruz

I am on the other side of the aisle, so i havn't got the VOTER VIOLATION mailer, but it's a bit disingenuous.

Even the Republican Secretary of State has a problem with this.  Per the New York Times

Iowa’s secretary of state chastised the presidential campaign of Senator Ted Cruz on Saturday for sending a mailer that he said violated “the spirit of the Iowa caucuses” and misrepresented state election law.

The mailer, flagged by a handful of Twitter users and confirmed as authentic by the Cruz campaign, included a warning of a “voting violation” in capital letters at the top of the page.

It informed voters they were receiving a notice “because of low expected voter turnout in your area.”

“Your individual voting history as well as your neighbors’ are public record,” the flier read. “Their scores are published below, and many of them will see your score as well. CAUCUS ON MONDAY TO IMPROVE YOUR SCORE and please encourage your neighbors to caucus as well. A follow-up notice may be issued following Monday’s caucuses.”

Below the text was a list of names, letter grades and percentage scores.

The secretary of state, Paul D. Pate, called the effort “misleading.”

“Accusing citizens of Iowa of a ‘voting violation’ based on Iowa caucus participation, or lack thereof, is false representation of an official act,” Mr. Pate said. “There is no such thing as an election violation related to frequency of voting. Any insinuation or statement to the contrary is wrong and I believe it is not in keeping in the spirit of the Iowa caucuses.”

Mr. Pate added that his office never “grades” voters, nor does it maintain records of caucus participation. He said that the office also did not “distribute” voter records, but they were available “for purchase for political purposes only, under Iowa Code.”

Hmmm... well, I am planning on tomorrow night, which will still only make me a woeful 50% for the last four cycles.  Still, I have hit all the General Elections and a couple of school board elections for extra credit.  I suspect if we grade on a curve, I am at least a C-.

And for Ted, he claims the Eddie Guerrero logic

Speaking to reporters on Saturday evening in Sioux City, Mr. Cruz said he would “apologize to nobody for using every tool we can to encourage Iowa voters to come out and vote.”

2016 Campaign Starts Now- He's got a knocked out western accent with a dixie touch
I think everyone knows that Iowa has a caucus.

Most states have a primary and that is what I grew up with.  It's just like a general election.

However, Iowa is known for its caucus.

I think people know that it's different, but many don't know how a caucus works.

I think this article from KRCG- the ABC affiliate in Cedar Rapids helps explain.

The bulls, named Ole and Midnight, were fed a large meal and then led to separate pens.

On the ground in each pen was a tarp with pictures of the 2016 candidates for the presidency, one for Democrats and one for Republicans.

Ole wore a blue scarf around her neck and caucused with the Democrats.  Midnight, in a red scarf, did the same with Republicans. After the gates closed, it was a waiting game to see which candidates they would select.

Ole picked Hillary Clinton to win, while Midnight took some time before settling on Donald Trump.

Pretty glamorous and the pundits were right, Clinton and Trump won.

See you in the next four years

2016 Campaign Starts Now- When the music is over, turn out the lights
I want to end here with my final bumper sticker tally, as we approach around the 100 hour mark to caucus.  I hit reset after last poll.

What does my bumper sticker (and yard sign) poll mean.  Well, it doesn't mean what I claim for it to mean- an accurate forecast of what is going to happen.

Still, I do believe it means something.  These are the people most passionate about their candidate.

The Iowa caucus is an odd thing, but there is something to say about passion.  In this cycle, we heard alot about the Selzer score.  It was not a new concept - who are people's 2nd and 3rd choices and who are the candidates some people would never, ever vote for- but Ms Selzer seems to have got her named attached to the concept, and everyone ran with it.

That's all I want to do.

How is it going down.  Well, here's my two cents and it's only that.

I think Bernie could win Iowa.  It seems an impossibility, but in most major state polls, he is within the margin of error or winning.  It does not seem possible, but he has an energized base.

On the GOP side, Ted Cruz seems to have all the momentum.  Trump makes it interesting though.  He has a crowd that is as faithful to him that's comparable to the Ron Paul and Sanders brigades.  Trump will finish 1 or 2 - no doubt.  Cruz has the Conservative and Evangelical vote.  These are the people who voted for Huckabee and Santorum.  I think Rubio is a distant third.  Carson was once the front runner, at least briefly, and will still have some support, though I suspect 4th or 5th.  That leaves room for someone to break into the Top 5- which could mean a few things, but I think would be generally positive.  Polls indicate Jeb mostly.  Rand Paul also shows up 5th in some polls.  I say 5th is Chris Christie.  I have not made a determination on Paul.  Maybe, what he says is true, and his supporters are going to turn out in droves.  Maybe, Carson finishes 6th.  Wouldn't surprise me.  I think Carly and Kasich are nonissues.  Kasich has started to poll better, though.  Even Jim Gilmore is starting to show up on polls, though usually at 1 percent, so...

Any way, let's say this is all about Passion.  Here are your final Al Bedsitter Bumpersticker Survey results for 2016:

Bernie  11
Hillary 2

(Full disclosure:  I feel like I missed a Sanders sticker or two, but you get the general idea)

Carson 7
Trump 6
Cruz 5
Fiorina 1
Christie 1

(So while this seems to indicate Carson would win, if you look at my first poll, Cruz has had the most upward mobility).

Also getting votes (because I am a completist)

Obama 2
Dubya 1
Romney 1

Nate Silver has nothing on me.

2016 Campaign Starts Now- Let's Call it a Tie... Again
Following up from last week, means not much has changed, so just sharing the new stuff.

Rand Paul- Rand has run a social media game, but I can't recall any TV ads before now.  Stand With Rand talked about freedom, but the way I heard it was "Vote for me.  I am the only guy who is going to legalize Weed."  I am not sure what to make of Paul.  His dad had a dedicated group of followers.  My friend on the Cruz campaign said they went there, but of course, he would say that.  Paul says he has 1000s of college students who will vote for him, but I think they went over to Bernie.  We will see.

Jeb Bush- When Jeb's PAC is not attacking Marco Rubio, Jeb is playing the meme "You need to elect a governor" and he reminds you three Governors are running.  Which of course tells you 1) Bobby Jindal dropped out (Who knew?) and  2) tells you Jeb is competing with Christie and Kasich.  Kasich has been a nonentity in Iowa.  Of course, if you are following the national campaign, you know him, but this is his first mention.  Which makes me think this will cause Bush supporters to realize Kasich is an option.  So while I postulate last week, Bush lost his support to Christie, he will probably lose everyone else to Kasich now.  Bush, of course, is still running his billboards, and with his previous strategy, is positioning himself as a Washington outsider.  Which of course, is true by record.  He is not a Senator like Cruz or Rubio, and it's worked well for Carson and Trump.  Bush was a businessman and a Governor.  He has not spent time in Washington.  Though, of course, the time he spent there visiting father and his brother.  So, good look with that.

Donald Trump- This household of course checks off all the liberal marks, so that means near daily fliers from HilRod and The Bern, but also phone calls and direct mail from The Donald.  21st Century Politics is very targeted.  If you are a members of the Teachers Union, a registered Democrat and subscribe to Mother Jones, Ted Cruz isn't going to waste money on you, right?  Makes sense.  Still, Trump is a brand, so in theory, anyway, i see where it makes sense to try and reach out to everyone.  I received a call from an anti-Trump PAC last night in which said he has been the most vocal of all candidates in support of Universal Healthcare.  Which of course, 1) backfired at this house.  (hmmm.. maybe I should consider this guy) and 2 seems rich coming from someone in the Romney camp.

Marco Rubio- I mentioned this last time, but still bears mentioning- his blitz of ads includes the one that says he is the only one who is able to beat Hillary.  I don't like the "I might not be your favorite candidate, but I am electable" strategy.  That is how John Kerry won in Iowa we are told (which probably isn't even 100% true, Kerry had a better ground game in Iowa than Dean, that is why he won), so while it might be bad long-term strategy, i think it might be bad short-term strategy too.

Ben Carson - Ben has moved from his "United Colors of Benetton" ads to one where he talks about being the candidate who has actual lives in his hand.  I am sure that is a powerful message, though I took it as a darker turn of phrase in a "I can decide if you live or die" way.  I notice Carson tends to use still pictures in his ads instead of videos, which I think is smart.  People like the idea of Carson, and this guy looks confident, trustworthy, even stoic, as opposed to someone who mumbles in a sleepy, low energy manner.  Not to slam the guy, but his poll numbers have more serious issues than me making comments.

2016 Campaign Starts Now- Rocky Redux
I mentioned the Rocky 2016 bus from Friday. I also saw one on Monday though this was pretty much a tour bus with duct tape and posterboard.

Doing some more research led me to this newsstory. Some not happy living next door to Presidential Candidate

Rocky De La Fuente is renting a home in West Des Moines and is now parking his campaign bus, RV and campaign semi tractor-trailer at the home.

The vehicles covered with " 'We are the People'" signs are hard to miss in the Turnberry Neighborhood.

"It's kind of an eyesore in the neighborhood," one neighbor told KCCI

The story from the local CBS affiliate that ran in December continues with

When the trucks and dozens of workers showed up on this quiet street, neighbors who did not want to be identified all asked, "Who's Rocky?"

Rocky De La Fuente is a California businessman with a dream of moving in the White House by getting the Democratic nomination. Even so, many here believe his campaign doesn't fit in this house.

"When you come with all this craziness and advertising in this type of neighborhood, it's disheartening," said a neighbor.

It's also against the homeowners' association rules which state, "No sign of any kind shall be permitted to remain on any lot," and "All lots in Turnberry shall be residential, no business activity may be conducted on any lot."

West Des Moines zoning laws also state that any large busses or trucks shall constitute a violation.

KCCI talked to Rocky on the phone and he said the vehicles will be driven around to advertise, and workers are here to transform the house into the North Pole so needy children can come receive free gifts from Santa the next few days.

If you think it sounds like uptight neighbors, then it's probably worth watching the link's video.

Of course, the caucus draws every kind of interest group, and so I also noticed a travelling billboard for No Labels.

No Labels was founded by Jon Huntsman and Joe Lieberman, and so at least on paper, sounds like a good thing.

Indeed, have things ever been so divided.  The GOP beats on Marco Rubio for working with Chuck Schumer to the point it may cost him his campaign.  Republicans like Paul Ryan and Lindsay Graham have been lambasted as RINOs.  On the other side, the party is so far to the left, that a guy who calls himself a 'socialist' is a viable candidate.  One needs not to look too far to see a list of moderate candidates- Huntsman and Lieberman both of course, but Buddy Roemer, Lincoln Chafee, and Jim Webb to name a few who failed to launch.

So No Labels seems to be a good idea.  I tried to get a good feel for who they were supporting, but my research didn't give me much.  At a local level, Democrat Senate candidate Bruce Braley was a strong supporter of the group, yet No Labels endorsed both him and his opponent Joni Ernst, who was far to the right.  Democrats similarly were disappointed in the group's endorsement of Colorado Senator Cory Gardner, who many consider someone unwilling to cross the line.  I don't know Gardner's record enough to comment.  I suspected it might be a group of Republicans and Red State Democrats, and though I am not 100% right, it sort of is.

Indeed, Democrats seem to not think much of the group, proposing that the group trying to stop gridlock, is actually trying to cause gridlock, in which case, they can swoop in and save the day.  Which of course makes a certain amount sense after reading this Yahoo article.

2016 Campaign Starts Now: Bullwinkle for Veep
A hazard of living in Iowa is that you might get hit by a campaign bus.

Which is not to imply I was ever in any danger (I wasn't) but my interest was piqued when I saw the Rocky2016 bus.

As professional looking as (and even cleaner than) Ben Carson's.  It worked.  I went right home and googled Rocky 2016.

Ok, let's not get ahead of ourselves.  I am a bit of a fanatic about such things, but I did google him, and ran across what looks like a rather reasonable campaign website.

Rocky is San Diego businessman Roque de la Fuente, and I suppose he has a point that the guests at the famous Brown and Black Dinner, which ostensibly is to talk about minority issues, was headlined by three white candidates.

Rocky is a self-described Conservative Democrat with these zingers:

"As far as I’m concerned, Hillary was the housewife of the Governor of Arkansas, then she basically was the first lady and then a poor guardian to the White House. Then, she basically cut a deal with Obama to become Secretary of State,"

I’m way better looking than Trump," De La Fuente said. “He is just functioning on shock value.” On Carson: "Most doctors know how to save your life. Which is needed, but they do not know how to solve 1000 different problems," said De La Fuente

Most of the obscure candidates are kooks.  Rocky seems like he has got it together, though he did mix a few metaphors

"I’m Rocky inside the Trojan horse and I’m going to be fighting Goliath,” said De La Fuente. “I plan to beat Goliath which basically means an independent thinker in the White House that’s going to get things done. Not blame one party or the other. I’m not worried about any of them… I think I’d have them for lunch.”

Of course, usually it's worth going to the people who know the candidate best, and in this case San Diego Reader has some problems with someone they report the FDIC has called "dishonest" and "should be banned from banking".

So, there you go.

2016 Campaign Starts Now- Lets call it quits before we break one another into bits. Lets call a tie
You know, Iowa is about over, and so I am going to leave this here.  There are two weeks to go, and anything can happen, but I think it is safe to say, this will be the final rundown of TV ads in Iowa.

Donald Trump-  The Donald's ads talk about cutting the head off Isis (see what he did there) and are very us against them.  Trump got his theme from Reagan, and these well-produced ads are a throwback to the USA vs Soviet Union heyday of the 80s.  Trump is switching out the USSR for Isis.  They look old school Presidential and are a better play than his radio ads which feature him barking about all the things he stands for.  It should be noted Trump's support has a ceiling, but it also a basement.  It's hard to think of him in terms of Bernie or Ron Paul, but indeed, some people will vote for Trump no matter what.

Ted Cruz- So Ted Cruz wins Iowa.  Even if Trump wins, I don't see any way that Cruz doesn't come out the winner.  He has done the right things and it is paying off.  So Cruz doesn't really have to run ads.  Like at different times in this election cycle where Trump and Carson did not run ads, Cruz gains nothing by running ads.  That is modern day politics, you are only running ads if you are running behind.  Now Cruz has run ads and they are Cruz looking Presidential.  Agree or disagree with the guy, he's run a good campaign here.  Now, what does that say for the Nomination, I am not sure.  Huckabee and Santorum won Iowa and both seemed like they might have a shot and failed at a nationwide scale.  How does it go from here, I don't know.

Mike Huckabee- Despite lagging way behind, Mike has run some ads.  Huckabee is the guy who drunk texts.  Remember how we loved each other eight years ago.  Well, I still love you.  Don't you?  Remember how good we were?  You still love me right?

Ben Carson
- While the GOP ads almost to a man talk about Isis and talk about Obamacare and the issues of the day, Carson's ad is about "Hands'.  These hands work and these hands give and these hands hug and in Carson's case, these hands heal.  This could be a Coke ad.  This ad was born of Benetton not Rove.  Touchy feely is a Democrat thing.  This "Come together" approach is totally Hillary/Barack, not Trump and fearmongering.  Which you know gives me an idea.  There is one way and only one way Carson will be President, but i think it will work.  Carson has a life altering experience (he can fake a campaign bus crash), comes out and says he was wrong about Obamacare, wrong about everything and has been reborn a liberal.  Laugh if you want, but this is the only way you are getting elected, Ben, so you can thank me later.

Bernie Sanders
-  Bernie ads are pretty much what you expect.  I don't know what else to say

Hillary Clinton- Hillary's ads are now aimed at whoever the GOP candidate will be.  Her ads feature quotes from Trump, Cruz, Christie, Jeb, and Marco which scare liberals.  It's clear, right?  Ignore Bernie.  Remind people you are the 'electable' one.  I think Hillary shouldn't count out Bernie (who one poll said was trailing by 2 points in Iowa).  i know this seems like a good idea (to assume you have the nomination) but is it?

Marco Rubio- I have a pretty good idea how Iowa will play out.  Cruz and Trump will be 1 and 2.  Carson will have something, though I think his momentum has not only stalled, but stopped; he will get something.  Someone will get 4th and someone will surprise.  Everything seems to indicate Rubio would be the 4th major player.  I am not saying he won't be. Indeed, nearly all polls show Rubio in third at this point.  Still, I have doubts.  Of course, what I am saying is not unfounded.  Indeed, conventional wisdom suggests that there will be a voice for the "moderate" candidate.  Which is why Jeb is attacking Marco hard.  It is also why Jeb is going after Marco and not Trump or Cruz or Carson.  My guess is Christie will be the surprise.  He has not done much here, but he did get the endorsement of the state's Republican governor.  Even then, it could of course by Rand or Carly who end up being the surprise here.  I doubt it.  Perhaps, John Kasich will have a last minute surge. 

I want to spend some time talking about Rubio's ads.  Rubio is the GOP's Hillary Clinton.  His ads press how Presidential he is.  Indeed, he has the look, though it takes more than that to convince.  Rubio has been running as the candidate who will beat Hillary.  Indeed, the same strategy as HilRod, "I am just going to ignore all else" mentality.  Interestingly, Rubio has been running ads during football games (and this time of year, there's a lot of those) which make it look like they have called him into the studio to ask him some football themed questions (No, really.)  It's like those fake news ads that they run about "Doctors announce a breakthrough today" and it really an ad for a laxative.  The interesting follow up is Cruz's PAC has run a disingenuous ad which compiles footage of the news of the day-  With ISIS on the move, Iran and Russia acting out, Syria in peril, what would Marco Rubio do,  and then cuts to a clip of Rubio saying "I know I got this debate, but I got to check on my fantasy football team.  Oh snap!

Jeb Bush- Jeb has spent a lot of money trying to be where Rubio is.  His PACs have hit Rubio hard on being a flip-flopper.  The fact that Rubio has worked with Chuck Schumer on an immigration "amnesty" bill has drawn straight fire from the likes of Limbaugh and Mark  Levin and anybody who thinks they have a shot at the White House.  Bush has spent money on a billboard campaign which includes quotes of Jeb.  I have not seen the Donald Trump one, but these are all over Des Moines, and have been mocked all over the internets.  I can name a few reasons while this isn't working, but you probably already know.

Bush's campaign is a slight variation on the Hillary strategy and again, is a pretty textbook one.  With his record as a governor, he has a claim on being the candidate with most administrative experience.  Indeed, what he is trying to stress is that he could govern from Day One.  Although I dont know that this was going to be successful, it did seem like a good angle.  Then, I saw the next ad in the series.  Jeb claimin to be the right person in the White House to make decisions on terrorism.  Jeb is the right person to decide what we need to do to take action.  I am going to slow down a bit- a Bush in the White House being the man to make the decision whether we should go to war overseas or not.  Yeah, maybe shouldn't have went with that angle.


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