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Ear to the Ground

Recall Elections, Proposition 8 Moves Closer to Supreme Court and More

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Posted on Jun 5, 2012
Lena/OnTask (Creative Commons)

Protesters push for Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s recall last year. 

Total Recall: All eyes are on the Badger State as Wisconsin voters head to the polls to cast their ballot for or against embattled Gov. Scott Walker. But the Republican is not the only politician facing a recall election. There are 17 recall elections happening Tuesday: six, including Walker, in Wisconsin; six in California; and five in Oregon. So far, there have been 103 recall elections in 2012, and the year is not even halfway over yet. Clearly this is not a good year to be an incumbent. (Read more

California Votes (But Does Anybody Care?): The voter-approved open primary system gets its first big test Tuesday, as Californians head to the polls. Among the more interesting contests to watch: the U.S. Senate race (Dianne Feinstein is running against 23 candidates on the ballot); the 30th Congressional District showdown (longtime Democratic congressmen Howard Berman and Brad Sherman face off as a result of redistricting); and Proposition 29’s cigarette tax. Voters, however, may not be thrilled with the free-for-all system—or perhaps they are just apathetic now that the presidential primary is pretty much over—as turnout is expected to be quite low. (Read more)

Proposition 8 Showdown: Expect gay marriage to become an even more important issue in the November election after a federal appeals court paved the way for the case to head to the Supreme Court. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declined Tuesday to rehear the Proposition 8 case. Proposition 8, as you may recall, defined marriage in California as being between one man and one woman. But a three-judge panel ruled the law unconstitutional in February. The next step for Proposition 8 supporters is to appeal to the Supreme Court and hope the justices take up the case. (Read more)

What If the High Court Rules Against Health Care Law?: Jeffrey Toobin has an interesting take on how catastrophic a Supreme Court defeat of Obama’s Affordable Care Act could be to the president and to Democrats. Toobin writes, “A loss in the A.C.A. case would be even more costly to Obama, and to Democrats, than the electoral calculus may suggest. If fully enacted, the A.C.A. would achieve a cherished progressive goal that has gone unfulfilled for two generations: to bring health insurance to tens of millions of the uninsured. The A.C.A. case is less about winning elections than about why elections matter. A loss in the Supreme Court would send the Democratic Party back to square one on the issue.” (Read more)

Senate Defeats Paycheck Fairness Act: Republicans are sure doing a poor job of trying to refute the notion that they are leading a “war on women.” On Tuesday, the Democratic-controlled Senate failed to pass its own legislation that would help strengthen gender discrimination laws in the workplace. The reason it failed: the ever-popular procedural vote. Republicans are strongly against the bill, arguing that it does not do enough to fight discrimination and creates only more bureaucracy. That left Democrats unable to come up with the additional seven votes they needed to break a filibuster, although it also helped strengthen their claim that the GOP is anti-female. (Read more)

Video of the Day: Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly told George Stephanopoulos on “Good Morning America” that Mitt Romney would win the election if it were held tomorrow. (Evidently O’Reilly either does not pay attention to polls, or doesn’t believe in them, as Obama is currently ahead in most of them. Take a look.

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—Posted by Tracy Bloom

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