A lot of times you read a scary headline and expect the article’s text to explain it away, but the AP headline “More Than 1 Million Voters Switch to GOP in Warning for Dems” requires even more qualification than the article’s text gives. And that assumes that the research backing that finding (which relies at least in part on “statistical modeling”) is even valid! Only in paragraph 9 do we learn that while 1 million voters “switched” to the GOP, 630,000 others “switched” to the Democrats, which already makes the scare number smaller. And I keep putting “switch” in quotation marks for a reason: in the article’s one anecdote (I know, only one!), a Colorado man complains about vaccine mandates to explain his switch from Libertarian to Republican. You can thus easily imagine (more easily than the AP, apparently!) that many folks “switched” from independent or unaffiliated to Republican, and that most of them were probably already voting Republican. And finally, at the risk of piling on, this information pre-dates our Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, and as I’ve said, people hate politicians who take away things they’ve come to rely on, as we saw during the Affordable Care Act debate in 2017.
You may appreciate the long and complex discourse here about a First Circuit Court panel splitting evenly over whether a warrantless telephone pole surveillance camera – which, in the case before the panel, took over eight months of video footage of a suspect’s front yard – violates our Fourth Amendment Constitutional rights. Or you may, like me, make up your mind at “warrantless.” Whenever law enforcement won’t get warrants, you have to wonder why, and you also have to wonder why the three judges who didn’t find eight months of pole cameras unconstitutional didn’t wonder why. And one judge’s notion that our government won’t abuse telephone pole camera surveillance because the polls are so expensive? That is to laugh. You can justify any expense once you tell yourself the world will end if you don’t, and law enforcement routinely gets exactly that apocalyptic about drug dealers. If only they felt that way about banksters or polluters! And if they did, I’d still make them get their damn warrants.
Finally, I don’t know what Ron Johnson means to accomplish by suddenly saying yeah, now that you mention it, he knew all about lists of “alternate electors” his office tried to give to Mike Pence and oh yeah, he got those lists from Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA). People don’t just feel sorry for guys who can’t get their story straight about an attempted coup. (Rep. Kelly, for his part, denies the story, but that’s just drama.) I guess Mr. Johnson just figures he’ll run another feel-good ad everyone likes (maybe this one, though he’s dropped it pretty early in the cycle) and get re-elected no matter what he says or does, and given how well Democrats have run against him in the past, I can see why he placed that bet. Though he’s not running against Russ Feingold this time. If Ron Johnson is the man who gives the “Citizen Legislator” a bad name, Russ Feingold is the master of tying one hand behind your back in a campaign.