August 8, 2018

Wondering on Wednesday (v142)

Let's dive right in, shall we?

Kris Kobach, the Trump-loving election fraud conspiracy theorist and Kansas Secretary of State is in a primary with Republican incumbent governor Jeff Colyer for the right to face a challenger in November. Currently, Kobach has about a 190 vote lead over his opponent.  There are still absentee and provisional ballots to be counted but if it remains close and Colyer asks for a recount he'd have to make the request of, and pay a bond to, his opponent, because the Secretary of State is the chief election official. 

When the topic arose about Kobach recusing himself from the recount process, his answer should surprise no one. Check it out:
The recount thing is done on a county level, so the secretary of state does not actually participate in the recount. The secretary of  state's office merely serves as a coordinating entity overseeing it all but not actually counting the votes.
Now, a logical or ethical or reasonable person might wonder why on earth Kobach wouldn't recuse himself, but then one can simply remember that, as noted above, he's a Trump-loving election fraud conspiracy theorist and the best way to prevent any kind of election fraud and to ensure an accurate count is to serve as the coordinating entity overseeing a recount IN YOUR OWN RACE, right? And I wonder if anyone else sees a warning in the statement below?
If the margin it less than 10 votes or something extraordinarily close, I would expect any person to call for a recount. (it) would take a significant amount of time to do a recount statewide. 
As in, don't bother asking for a recount unless it's really close, because you'll make a mess of things for the whole state.  And 10 votes? Is that really what Kobach considers a reasonable recount threshold?

Another noteworthy outcome from yesterday's primaries was the strong showing by "conventional" Democrats in primaries. For example, in Michigan, Gretchen Whitmer (governor) and Elissa Slotkin (House) both defeated more progressive candidates. In the gubernatorial primary, for example, progressive New Yorker Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders both campaigned for one of Whitmer's opponents, without success. There was a similar outcome in Missouri. 

It makes me wonder whether we'll see another Ocasio-Cortez this election cycle, or if the progressives still have a lot of work to do to find common ground with others in the party.

And finally, a opportunity to comment on the media - who would have thunk that would happen? 

Tonight I happened to capture the first few minutes of Access Hollywood (yes, that Access Hollywood) where one of the hot topics was the ugly and getting uglier legal battles between Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. Details of the ugliness were given, but I'm not going to repeat them here.

After talking about how people who are going through a breakup or divorce "must love their kids more than they hate their former partner" and focus on keeping things as civil as possible. And they lamented that this whole sorry death of a relationship was bring played out in the media, on purpose it seems, by both camps, and how that was the completely wrong way to do it.

And then, they continued to discuss it, including the possibility that the Jolie camp was trying to slow things down, but that, according to one of the hosts who "had done some reporting on this" and talked to people close to Pitt, she learned that he was supposedly wanting to go straight to divorce without wasting any more time -- and then stated that he has to have a girlfriend and that was what was driving his haste.

I wonder, when they watch the tape of the show, if they'll see how silly their hand-wringing about media coverage sounds, and if they'll learn their own lesson and in the future commit to not mentioning this or similarly sensitive stories. Or whether they'll consider how it would feel if they were to find themselves on the wrong side of such a report. One can only hope.