Monday, January 19, 2009

Politics, schmolitics

I don't know if this is true or not, but it's been reported that Michael Jackson has amended his will to give the rights to Beatles' songs back to Sir Paul McCartney.
Michael Jackson is rumored to have altered his will so that control of the Paul McCartney-written Beatles songs will revert to the man who penned them upon the King of Pop's death.
It is only January 2009 and the next federal elections won't take place until 2010. That's not stopping folks from talking about running for the United States Senate, especially in Kentucky where Jim Bunning is up for re-election. Here's the word from The Fix, from last December.
1. Kentucky (R): When Sen. Jim Bunning (R) narrowly escaped an upset defeat in 2004, most party operatives expected he wouldn't seek reelection six years hence. But Bunning insiders insist he is ready to run for a third term -- although doubts persist. Assuming he is running again, Bunning is in real trouble. While we don't expect Rep. Ben Chandler (D) to run -- he is perfectly happy sitting on Appropriations in the House -- Democrats are certain to field a strong candidate with Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo, who lost to Bunning 51 percent to 49 percent in 2004, probably having the right of first refusal. Among the other Democrats mentioned are state Attorney General Jack Conway and state Auditor Crit Luallen.
State Auditor Crit Luallen will decide by this spring as to what she decides to do. She's in her second term as state auditor.
"I am getting a lot of encouragement to consider the Senate race," Luallen told The Associated Press in an interview last week. "I'm certainly not ruling anything out."
Joe Gerth comments that April 15 will be the unofficial deadline to enter the 2010 race against Bunning.
Bunning, a Republican, maintains that he is running for re-election for a term that would end when he's 85 years old. He has created a fundraising committee and reportedly has begun calling and asking for contributions.

Some still don't believe he's going to run. We'll take him at his word. But there are other Republicans waiting if Bunning rethinks his decision. Secretary of State Trey Grayson is most often mentioned, but there are other names floating out there, including U.S. Reps. Ed Whitfield, R-1st District, and Geoff Davis, R-4th District.[...]

Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo, who nearly beat Bunning in 2004, is seen as likely to enter the race. In an interview Friday, Mongiardo said he's still weighing his decision and expects to make an announcement in late March or early April.

But Mongiardo said fundraising now probably wouldn't be very successful because of last year's presidential race and the hard-fought Senate race between Mitch McConnell and Bruce Lunsford.

"There's just a fatigue in donors because of the races going on for the past 12 months," he said.

State Auditor Crit Luallen is on a similar timeline, saying she'll make her decision sometime around the end of March. She said she's laid out a plan to raise money and campaign and is now weighing personal considerations.

"I'm looking at it," she said. "It's important that the Democrats have a viable, strong candidate. … I believe it is a very winnable race."

But Luallen won't run if U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler or state Attorney General Jack Conway gets into the race, she said. The three Democrats will settle on one candidate.

Chandler has downplayed any interest in the race but hasn't ruled it out, saying he's happy in the House, where he has a coveted seat on the powerful Appropriations Committee. He's got a safe seat in Kentucky's 6th District, which hasn't turned out an incumbent in more than 30 years.

Some have speculated that a call from President-elect Barack Obama, whom Chandler endorsed during the campaign, might get him into the race, but unless Chandler signals some interest, a busy Obama probably wouldn't make the call.

Chandler didn't return phone calls.

That brings us to Conway, the 39-year-old attorney general who already has made his rounds in Washington, D.C., talking to folks with the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee about a possible run.

Mark Riddle, his political adviser, said only that Conway is considering a run and is receiving encouragement from people in Kentucky and Washington.

Conway, Luallen and Mongiardo all agree on one thing: They hope there isn't a contested primary that would force Democrats to spend millions of dollars during the spring that would be better spent against Bunning in the fall.

If they can save the money for fall, all the Democrats will be popping corks.
In Evan Bayh news, here's a nice article on his former communications director, Dan Pfeiffer.

Dan Issel was happy that it was Jodie Meeks that broke his record.
It was late in the first half, after Jodie Meeks had made a shot from over there and another from over there and then yet another from way over there, that Dan Issel turned to his wife, Cheri, and made his prediction:

"Jodie has a heckuva shot to get the record. He's got that look in his eye. He's playing with an unbelievable amount of confidence. I think he's going to do it."

Issel could always make a shot -- and call one.
Daniel Kurtzman asks comedy writers how they will survive the Obama comedy crisis.

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