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E.J. Dionne writes:

"[Georgia Republican Senate candidate David] Perdue’s problems on outsourcing, like Mitt Romney’s 2012 troubles related to his own business background, reveal the major soft spot in the GOP’s white-working-class armor: Many blue-collar Americans combine a mistrust of Democrats with a deep skepticism about the corporate world.

"Anna Greenberg, a Democratic pollster, says this points the way toward arguments that progressives need to make in the future. ‘We have to expose the unholy alliance between money and politics,’ she says. ‘Concern about inequality is unifying, it’s cross-partisan and it’s not ideological.’

"This will play some this year but may loom larger in 2016."

Richard Fausset reports:

The most famous name in the Georgia governor’s race belongs to the challenger, State Senator Jason Carter, grandson of Jimmy Carter, the former president who served as Georgia governor from 1971 to 1975. But rather than a referendum on the Carter legacy, the race remains focused to a large extent on the record of Nathan Deal, the former congressman and current occupant of the governor’s mansion.

Mr. Deal, 72, a polished Republican who has spent more than three decades in public office, has been fighting for a second term amid sustained trouble at the state ethics commission stemming from his previous campaign for governor; chronic public school funding shortfalls; and an 8.1 percent statewide unemployment rate, the highest in the nation.

Not surprisingly, his Democratic rival, Mr. Carter, appears to have decided that he has better options than playing the famous grandfather card.

Instead, Mr. Carter, 39, has incessantly pummeled Mr. Deal on ethics issues and criticized the governor for Georgia’s underfunded education system — which, Mr. Carter argues, helps explain the state’s poor jobs numbers.

“Governor Deal has brought us to the bottom,” Mr. Carter said at an Atlanta candidates forum last month. “And we’re beginning to reap what we’ve sown.”

Juliet Lapidos writes:

Senator Mitch McConnell has represented Kentucky almost as long as his Democratic challenger, Alison Lundergan Grimes, has been alive, and his constituents seem tired of him. At 72, he’s not considered a statesman. He’s considered an operator, which helps explain why his approval numbers hover in the mid-30s.

In manner, he’s stiff and deeply uncharismatic. Although he’s careful to shake everyone’s hand at campaign events, his face seems frozen in a perpetual glare of disapproval. He’s been compared to a warmed-over vanilla milkshake and to an oyster.

The incumbent’s unpopularity creates an opening for Ms. Grimes, 35, the Kentucky secretary of state, who’s as energetic as Mr. McConnell is staid. An even more unpopular politician, however, is making trouble for her: President Obama. Mr. McConnell’s campaign slogan — “Obama Needs Grimes, and Kentucky Needs Mitch McConnell” — summarizes his attempt to make his sixth Senate run a referendum on the president.

Ms. Grimes is desperate not to let that happen. She reminds voters that Mr. Obama is not on the ballot and spends more time attacking his policies — on coal, for instance — than defending them. In fact, in the past few days here, I heard only one positive thing said about the president — and it was Mr. McConnell who said it. At a debate Monday night, he said that President Obama was right to want new trade agreements. Ms. Grimes is so intent on avoiding any mention of Mr. Obama that she has actually refused to say whether she voted for him.

David Firestone writes:

There are two Southern women running for re-election to the Senate this year, both of them Democrats, and the difference in their approach to social issues says everything about the temper of their states.

In Louisiana, a deeply conservative state with a large Catholic population, Mary Landrieu has taken what she calls “nuanced” positions on abortion and same-sex marriage, essentially trying to have it both ways. She says life begins at conception, but the government should stay out of the bedroom and doctor’s office, except if it wants to ban late-term abortions. She says she supports same-sex marriage, but also supports the Louisiana constitutional amendment banning it. It’s no wonder she would rather spend her time extolling fossil fuels.

But on Wednesday in Charlotte, [North Carolina,] Kay Hagan stood without hesitation next to Janet Colm, chief executive of the Planned Parenthood Action Fund of Central North Carolina, and proudly bashed her opponent, Thom Tillis, for reducing women’s rights on abortion and birth control. “It is 2014, and these decisions should be between a woman and her doctor, not between a woman and her boss, nor her senator,” she said at a news conference here, surrounded by cheering female supporters. “And let me tell you, after seeing what Thom Tillis has done in Raleigh, I am so glad that no legislator in Raleigh is my doctor.”

Ms. Hagan needs women to show up at the polls on Nov. 4, maybe more so than candidates in other races. She has been running even with or a few points ahead of Mr. Tillis in a swing state that is better educated and more urbanized than Louisiana, and some polls have given her an advantage of as much as 20 percentage points over Mr. Tillis among women, the biggest gender gap in any Senate race.

Under the circumstances, she couldn’t ask for a more perfect opponent, because Mr. Tillis — the speaker of the state House — has a long record of making life harder for women in North Carolina, particularly poor ones.

thepoliticalfreakshow:

The State of Marriage Equality In America (UPDATED 10/17/2014): Currently, 31 states (and the District of Columbia) have marriage equality.
Here’s the full state breakdown, courtesy of Freedom to Marry.
States with Marriage Equality
For a full breakdown of where state laws stand, click here. For a full breakdown of marriage rulings since Windsor, click here. For all pending marriage litigation, click here.  In 31 states - AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, HI, ID, IA, IL, IN, ME, MD, MA, MN, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OK, OR, PA, RI, UT, VA, VT, WA, WV and WI, plus Washington, D.C. - same-sex couples have the freedom to marry.  In an additional four states - KS, MT, SC, and WY - federal appellate rulings have set a binding precedent in favor of the freedom to marry, meaning the path is cleared for the freedom to marry there. In an additional 8 states, judges have issued rulings in favor of the freedom to marry, with many of these rulings now stayed as they proceed to appellate courts: In AR, FL, KY, MI, and TX, judges have struck down marriage bans, and in LA, OH and TN, judges have issued more limited pro-marriage rulings. In MO, the marriages of same-sex couples legally performed in other states are respected.  With these advances, a record number of Americans live in states that recognize relationships between same-sex couples: 
Over 64% of the U.S. population will soon live in a state with the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.
Nearly 59% of the U.S. population lives in a state currently issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples state-wide.




Learn about International Progress Toward the Freedom to Marry
US Native American Tribes With Marriage Equality
In the United States, federally recognized Native American tribes have the legal right to form their own marriage laws.[79] There are ten tribal jurisdictions that legally recognize same-sex marriage: the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes,[80] the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation,[81] the Coquille Tribe,[82] the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians,[83] the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe,[84] the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians,[85] the Puyallup tribe,[86] the Santa Ysabel Tribe,[87] the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe,[88] and the Suquamish tribe.[89] The legality of same-sex marriage is currently on hold in the Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians due to Michigan’s same-sex marriage ban being challenged.
States With Marriage Equality Rulings Stayed Upon Further Appeal
** In addition, in 11 states, federal District Courts or state courts have legalized SSM but those decisions are stayed pending appeals to a higher court:
In 5 states —  Arkansas, Idaho, Michigan, Oklahoma, Texas— state or federal courts have legalized same-sex marriage, but their rulings have been stayed, pending appeals to higher courts.
In two states — Kentucky and Tennessee — District Court rulings have required their state to recognize same-sex marriages made in other states.
In two states:
In Ohio, a District Court ruled that a person who married a spouse of the same sex in an out-of-state marriage can have their married state acknowledged, but only on her or his Ohio death certificate.
In  Indiana a District Court released a temporary restraining order requiring the state to recognize the marriage of a single specified couple who were married out of state. This was issued on compassionate grounds because one spouse is terminally ill.


We believe that these two states are the only place in the world where the act of dying causes one’s marriage to be recognized.

*** In five states, Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin, three-judge panels from the 4th, 7th and 10th U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal had upheld District Court rulings in favor of same-sex marriage. All four lawsuits were appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. On 2014-OCT-06, the Supreme Court refused to accept the appeals. That means that same-sex marriage has become legal in all five states. Marriage equality was also be attained in six additional states over which the three Circuit Courts have jurisdiction. This is expected to occur immediately or in the near future. These are: Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming, This bring the total number of states where same-sex couples can freely marry to 30!
**** In one state — Nevada — a District Court ruled against same-sex marriage!
States Without Marriage Equality (But Their Bans Are Being Challenged In Federal Court And/Or Rulings Are Stayed)
Alabama (2006), Arizona (2008), Arkansas (2004), Florida (2008), Georgia (2004), Kansas (2005), Kentucky (2004), Louisiana
(2004), Michigan (2004), Mississippi (2004), Missouri (2004), Montana (2004), Nebraska (2000), North Dakota (2004), Ohio
(2004), South Carolina (2006), South Dakota (2006), Tennessee (2006) and Texas (2005).

thepoliticalfreakshow:

The State of Marriage Equality In America (UPDATED 10/17/2014): Currently, 31 states (and the District of Columbia) have marriage equality.

Here’s the full state breakdown, courtesy of Freedom to Marry.

States with Marriage Equality

For a full breakdown of where state laws stand, click here. For a full breakdown of marriage rulings since Windsor, click here. For all pending marriage litigation, click here.

In 31 states - AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, HI, ID, IA, IL, IN, ME, MD, MA, MN, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OK, OR, PA, RI, UT, VA, VT, WA, WV and WI, plus Washington, D.C. - same-sex couples have the freedom to marry.

In an additional four states - KS, MT, SC, and WY - federal appellate rulings have set a binding precedent in favor of the freedom to marry, meaning the path is cleared for the freedom to marry there.

In an additional 8 states, judges have issued rulings in favor of the freedom to marry, with many of these rulings now stayed as they proceed to appellate courts: In AR, FL, KY, MI, and TX, judges have struck down marriage bans, and in LA, OH and TN, judges have issued more limited pro-marriage rulings.

In MO, the marriages of same-sex couples legally performed in other states are respected.

With these advances, a record number of Americans live in states that recognize relationships between same-sex couples:

  • Over 64% of the U.S. population will soon live in a state with the freedom to marry for same-sex couples.
  • Nearly 59% of the U.S. population lives in a state currently issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples state-wide.
United States Map

Learn about International Progress Toward the Freedom to Marry

US Native American Tribes With Marriage Equality

In the United States, federally recognized Native American tribes have the legal right to form their own marriage laws.[79] There are ten tribal jurisdictions that legally recognize same-sex marriage: the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes,[80] the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation,[81] the Coquille Tribe,[82] the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians,[83] the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe,[84] the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians,[85] the Puyallup tribe,[86] the Santa Ysabel Tribe,[87] the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe,[88] and the Suquamish tribe.[89] The legality of same-sex marriage is currently on hold in the Sault Tribe of Chippewa Indians due to Michigan’s same-sex marriage ban being challenged.

States With Marriage Equality Rulings Stayed Upon Further Appeal

** In addition, in 11 states, federal District Courts or state courts have legalized SSM but those decisions are stayed pending appeals to a higher court:

  • In 5 states — Arkansas, Idaho, Michigan, Oklahoma, Texas— state or federal courts have legalized same-sex marriage, but their rulings have been stayed, pending appeals to higher courts.
  • In two states — Kentucky and Tennessee — District Court rulings have required their state to recognize same-sex marriages made in other states.
  • In two states:
    • In Ohio, a District Court ruled that a person who married a spouse of the same sex in an out-of-state marriage can have their married state acknowledged, but only on her or his Ohio death certificate.
    • In Indiana a District Court released a temporary restraining order requiring the state to recognize the marriage of a single specified couple who were married out of state. This was issued on compassionate grounds because one spouse is terminally ill.

We believe that these two states are the only place in the world where the act of dying causes one’s marriage to be recognized.

*** In five states, Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin, three-judge panels from the 4th, 7th and 10th U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal had upheld District Court rulings in favor of same-sex marriage. All four lawsuits were appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. On 2014-OCT-06, the Supreme Court refused to accept the appeals. That means that same-sex marriage has become legal in all five states. Marriage equality was also be attained in six additional states over which the three Circuit Courts have jurisdiction. This is expected to occur immediately or in the near future. These are: Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Wyoming, This bring the total number of states where same-sex couples can freely marry to 30!

**** In one state — Nevada — a District Court ruled against same-sex marriage!

States Without Marriage Equality (But Their Bans Are Being Challenged In Federal Court And/Or Rulings Are Stayed)

Alabama (2006), Arizona (2008), Arkansas (2004), Florida (2008), Georgia (2004), Kansas (2005), Kentucky (2004), Louisiana
(2004), Michigan (2004), Mississippi (2004), Missouri (2004), Montana (2004), Nebraska (2000), North Dakota (2004), Ohio
(2004), South Carolina (2006), South Dakota (2006), Tennessee (2006) and Texas (2005).

From the Daily Kos:

"South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley makes a strong case for her state still being the worse Carolina with this entry, in which she says that the state continuing to fly the Confederate battle flag on statehouse grounds is fine because none of the CEO’s she’s talked to have a problem with it."

If the CEOs don’t mind, they should. The Confederate flag should be permanently consigned to its suitable place in infamy.

The embarrassment continues unabated at Florida State, a school that has put the need to win football games above all else, including an alleged rape, a Title IX violation and, pending an investigation, an NCAA rule that some schools still actually follow.

The amazingly still-eligible Jameis Winston is preparing for the big Notre Dame game Saturday as if all of that — as well as stealing crab legs from a Publix and soda from a Burger King, firing a BB gun at his apartment complex and making a spectacle of himself yelling a vulgar phrase while standing on a table in the student union — never happened.

It must be so much fun to be a Florida State fan right now, living inside that morality-free bubble that fits so snugly over the campus in Tallahassee.

Christine Brennan in her USA Today column: Brennan: Florida State gives way to ‘Jameis State’

ESPN reports:

"Former All-Star Chris Webber is making a play to re-enter the NBA. Webber leads the Webber Group, which has informed the league of its desire to purchase majority interest in the Atlanta Hawks. The franchise is for sale in the wake of a controversy involving racially charged comments made by owner Bruce Levenson and general manager Danny Ferry."

As some other Senate seats appear to be slipping away, Democrats see a fresh opportunity [in Georgia] — attacking [Republican Davis] Perdue as a heartless corporate executive and job-killer, much as [President] Obama’s campaign did to private-equity manager Mitt Romney in 2012. Perdue said last week that he was “proud” of outsourcing jobs in an attempt to turn around troubled companies.

The recent focus on outsourcing, and Perdue’s decision to vocally defend the practice, appears to mark a turning point in the race, with [Democrat Michelle] Nunn gaining ground and even leading the contest in some polls.