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November 1st, 2014

Chris Christie’s outburst, Landrieu on racism in Louisiana, and is Colorado having second thoughts on marijuana? : US state blog round up for 25 – 31 October


Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Blog Admin

November 1st, 2014

Chris Christie’s outburst, Landrieu on racism in Louisiana, and is Colorado having second thoughts on marijuana? : US state blog round up for 25 – 31 October


Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

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USApp Managing Editor, Chris Gilson, looks at the week in U.S. state blogging. Click here for our weekly roundup of national blogs. 


This week in the Pine Tree State, RedState writes that GOP Governor Paul LePage has opened up a ten point lead. They say that this is a turnaround considering many thought that he would be ‘toast’ in Maine’s midterm election only a year ago.

Moving down to New Hampshire, Crooks & Liars reviews GOP Senate candidate Scott Brown’s performance in this week’s debate against incumbent Senator Jeanne Shaheen. They say that Brown’s ‘carpetbagging’ has come back to haunt him as he appeared to be unfamiliar with some of the state’s local geography.

In Massachusetts, Democrat Martha Coakley is in a close fight with Republican Charlie Baker for the state’s governorship. Daily Kos writes on Monday that rather than he own mistakes, external factors such as Baker’s cash on hand advantage, and a relatively late primary.

On Wednesday, Capitol Confidential covers a stoush between the campaigns of Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo and his Republican challenger, Rob Astorino. The Astorino campaign has charged that Cuomo tool nearly $38 million from the relief funds for Hurricane Sandy to use for his own TV commercials. Cuomo has called the accusations ‘political baloney’.

Chris Christie has been in the news this week, and not for the best of reasons. First, the Republican Governor of New Jersey was forced to defend his policy on quarantining healthcare workers with Ebola this week after protests from a nurse, Kaci Hickox detained under the policy, writes The Atlantic. Later in the week, Blue Jersey reports that Christie aggressively yelled and insulted a constituent who asked him a difficult question during a commemoration for two year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy.


This week in the Old North State, The Atlantic looks at Kay Hagan’s campaign to keep her Senate seat. They say that while the North Carolina Democrat has run a ‘perfect’ campaign against Speaker of the State House, Thom Tillis, the national climate, including the Ebola crisis, may still mean she loses her race. On Thursday, Roll Call’s At the Races writes that with the Senate race so close, the state is preparing for a potential recount, which will occur if the margin of victor is less than 0.5 percent of the votes cast.

Mitch McConnell Credit: Gage Skidmore (Flickr, CC-BY-SA-2.0)
Mitch McConnell Credit: Gage Skidmore (Flickr, CC-BY-SA-2.0)

Heading over to Kentucky, PoliticusUSA writes that incumbent Senator Mitch McConnell has been forced to personally loan his reelection campaign $1.8 million – a sign, they say, that he may be facing defeat. On Friday, Crooks & Liars says that the campaign of McConnell’s opponent, Alison Lundergan Grimes is planning on suing Mitch McConnell over a campaign mailer that states that voters may be committing fraud by listening to information from the Grimes campaign.

In the Sunshine State this week SaintPetersblog reports that updated numbers on voter turnout show a continuing trend towards the Democrats, where early voters have closed the Democratic/GOP gap to just over 9 percent. This time in 2010, the gap was 18.5 percent, with Rick Scott only winning by 61,500 votes.

Mississippi’s long running saga ended this week, with the state’s Supreme Court ruling to uphold the dismissal of Chris McDaniel’s lawsuit over his June Republican primary loss to the incumbent Senator, Thad Cochran, reports Outside the Beltway. They say that the Mississippi Senate race has been one of the strangest of the 2014 midterm cycle.

In the Pelican State this week, Something Like the Truth reports on Friday that the incumbent Senator, Mary Landrieu has stated that President Obama has a difficult time in Louisiana because of the state’s historic racism. They say that her comment has been taken out of context by the right wing media, and that racism is alive in well in Louisiana, and throughout the South.

Texas’ voter ID laws have been the subject of a great deal of controversy and debate in recent months. On Tuesday, The Brennan Center for Justice reports that voters are now being turned away because of the law, which imposes substantial costs for those who wish to obtain the correct ID.


On Monday, Caffeinated Politics looks at recent polling in Wisconsin’s gubernatorial election, writing that the race between the incumbent Republican, Scott Walker, and his Democratic challenger may well be decided by less than one point. Staying in the Badger State, Blogging Blue looks at a new study that finds that low wage jobs have increased in Wisconsin and middle wage jobs have fallen during Walker’s tenure as governor. This trend goes against Scott Walker’s declarations that the state is ‘open for business’.

Iowa State Senator Joni Ernst Credit: Gage Skidmore (Flickr, CC-BY-SA-2.0)
Iowa State Senator Joni Ernst Credit: Gage Skidmore (Flickr, CC-BY-SA-2.0)

On Thursday, Blog for Iowa reports that Hillary Clinton has claimed that GOP Senate candidate, Joni Ernst, has disqualified herself from office because of her refusal to answer questions. They say in a very close Senate race, Ernst has refused to tell voters what she will do if she wins.

Heading north to Minnesota, True North wonders on Wednesday if increased polling of the state’s GOP candidates for Senate and Governor is a sign of a Republican wave of unexpected victories. They say that it striking that neither incumbent Governor Mark Dayton or Senator Al Franken have been able to reach 50 percent support, just days before the election.

In Missouri this week, PoliticMO reports that state election officials have predicted that as many as 2/3 of voters in the state will not vote on Tuesday next week. They say that only 1.6 million of Missouri’s more than 4 million registered voters will turn out to vote.

SayAnythingblog reports on Tuesday that North Dakota’s Supreme Court has overturned a district court ruling that had found that a state law regulating drugs used for abortions was unconstitutional. This decision leads up to a pro-life a ballot measure, which will be before voters next week.

West and Pacific

Senator Mark Udall Credit: Mark Udall (Flickr, CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0)
Colorado Senator Mark Udall Credit: Mark Udall (Flickr, CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0)

The Feed at The American Interest reports this week that residents of Colorado are having second thoughts on how the state legalized marijuana. They say that a new poll shows that 50 percent of respondents feel that legalization was a bad idea, and comes after predictions that the state will take in $20 million less than expected in tax revenue from marijuana sales. Staying in Colorado, ColoradoPols looks at the issue of reproductive choice in the state and the GOP’s charge that incumbent Senator Mark Udall is obsessed with the abortion issue.

Heading over to Arizona, Blog for Arizona writes on Saturday that the Republican candidate for governor, Doug Ducey is a ‘Sam Brownback in the making’, referring to the Governor of Kansas. They say that Ducey, like Brownback, would like to bring the latter’s failed ‘trickle-down’ economic theories to Arizona in an attempt to create a ‘conservative utopia’.

In the Golden State this week, Fox & Hounds writes that incumbent Democratic Governor, Jerry Brown is poised for victory after what they describe as a ‘ho-hum election campaign’. They say that the GOP’s candidate, Neel Kashkari has been outmatched by a candidate who has spent very little money to remain in office.

While Colorado may be having second thoughts on marijuana, legalizing the drug may offer significant benefits to Alaska, writes Wonkblog this week. They say that the state might gain as much as $23 million in annual tax revenues if the drug were to be legalized.

Hawaii’s Honolulu Civil Beat looks at the role of outside money in the state’s gubernatorial race, saying that SuperPACs have actually spent more on the race than the candidates themselves. 

Featured image: New Jersey Governor Chris Christie Credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-BY-SA-2.0)

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