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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Don't Believe the Right-Wing Hyena Pack on the Governor Race, Or Any Other

Republicans know that if Democrats turn out in force in this election, Democrats will win. Out of a total  1.1 million registered voters in New Mexico this year, 49% are Democrats, 32% are Republicans, 16% are independents and 3% are registered as Libertarians or other parties. And voter registration is up 5.5% since 2006, with Democrats holding steady and Republicans losing some registrations.

What does this mean? Republicans can win ONLY if they can convince Democrats not to vote, and Republican and right-leaning independents vote in huge numbers. True, some Democrats are apparently straying this year -- ignoring the issues and being swayed by empty GOP talking points and Susana's surname -- but that won't matter much if Democrats turn out in large numbers. In other words, this election is all about turnout. And don't let anybody tell you any different.

The Right-Wing Disinformation Campaign
As you may have noticed, the right-wing echo chamber is now in full force, repetitiously putting out claims that this election is already over, that Martinez will win with a blow out, that Dem candidates can't win in other races, that Democratic voters are uninterested, that most of the undecideds and soft votes will magically all go Republican. You know the routine. The same thing is going on nationally.

It's happening for a reason and that reason is that the moneyed interests hope that if enough Democrats believe the hype, they won't come out to vote and Republican deadbeats will win by default. And it's happening so forcefully because the reality is that all the Dem candidates are either winning or the races are so close right now (according to rumored interior polling) that Dems are just a sliver away from winning. In other words, good turnout on the Dem side will be the determining factor. Repeat after me.

The "Neutral News" Racket
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Not only does the right-wing echo chamber include the Republican Party and Republican campaign operatives (aided by national operatives like Karl Rove), it is bolstered by a contingent of "reporters" and "news" outlets that claim to be "neutral" or "nonpartisan." Professional spinners like Monahan (with his conveniently timed and anonymously sourced "alligator" leaks), obviously slanted "journalists" like Sean Olson of the Albuquerque Journal (not to mention the Journal's right-wing bias generally) and various TV "news" gatherers and news departments have been acting like a pack of hyenas circling a kill. And that's not counting the well-orchestrated bullying and BS going on during KKOB radio talk shows.

Add in the fact that New Mexico has only one pollster, Brian Sanderoff of Research and Polling Inc., who does ALL of the Albuquerque Journal's polling and is just fine with allowing the Journal to post only parts of the information gathered -- not the entire cross-tabs and other data -- and you have all the makings of a spin machine that pretends to be otherwise. I mean, Tom Lang, who owns the Journal, has a financial stake in Sanderoff's company. Cozy, isn't it?

I'm not saying that Sanderoff's polls are necessarily wrong, but there's a lot that can be done to slant findings by selective or incomplete data releases and via interpretation of the results. These are avenues that could easily be used by Lang and others to taint or shape perceptions. 

Sanderoff and the KOAT Governor Debate
To make matters worse, Sanderoff was tapped to be the sole provider of debate performance analysis after Sunday's televised gubernatorial debate. So you've got a guy who depends on right-winger Lang for a significant portion of his business, and whose business investors include Lang, providing the only debate analysis TV viewers will get via his appearances on KOAT. Sorry, that just leaves too much room for pressuring and spin on behalf of Martinez and her big-dollar donors. Can we have some genuine outside, nonpartisan analysis please?

Not surprisingly (at least to me), Sanderoff decided that the debate was a tie. He actually said that Martinez's supporters would think she won and that Denish's supporters would think she won. Duh, no kidding. That's what always happens in debates. What Sanderoff should have been doing instead was scoring the debate on the points made. Instead he unilaterally declared that nobody won, but that Denish was the loser because she hadn't hit the ball out of the park against Martinez. Oh, and he gratuitously added that "in his opinion" Denish's calling Martinez a liar was "over the top." Gee, thanks Brian. Have you ever heard Sanderoff say anything similar about Martinez's bad cop demeanor?

For the next few days, the echo chamber (and its supporters) repeated Sanderoff's "analysis" of the debate ad nauseum, planting bad seeds in many places. The king had spoken and that was that. Sanderoff didn't explain WHY Denish called Martinez a liar or that the highly reputable factcheck.org agreed with Denish's assessment that Martinez's attacks on Denish's family related to Mesa del Sol were bunk. He just proclaimed Denish was "over the top" -- period, end of story.

Denish's Winning Debate Points
Sanderoff also failed to analyze whether Denish's gotcha points against Martinez were legitimate and fact-based. Probably because they were -- in spades. Clearly, Denish forcefully and effectively backed Martinez into a corner on any number of issues, as never before. The facts are:

  • Martinez backs taking funding from the public school system and transferring it to expensive private schools.
  • Martinez refused to deny that she would continue allowing a tax loophole -- unavailable in every Western state but one -- that allows big out-of-state corporations to protect their NM profits from being taxed. So, New Mexico's small businesses and individual tax payers have to make up the difference. In other words Susana cares more about the well being of big corporate interests than that of New Mexico's families and businesses.
  • Martinez couldn't refute the fact that she's taken big blobs of campaign cash from sleazy oil, real estate and water operators in Texas ($800,000), some of whom are cronies of Karl Rove and Dick Cheney and one of whom (Bob Perry and wife, who made a history-making $450,000 donation) was the perpetrator of the totally disproved Swiftboat attacks on John Kerry.
  • Martinez couldn't deny that her running mate, John Sanchez, was caught by the INS not once, but twice, for hiring undocumented workers (illegal aliens in right-wing parlance). Talk about hyprocrisy.
  • Martinez didn't deny that she has said she will put all regulations on hold if elected and that, in fact, she considers such regulations related to environmental protections and other important safeguards to be nothing more than "red tape" that gets in the way of high rolling corporate interests.
  • Martinez offered nothing in the way of an economic proposal except vague statements about cutting waste, abuse and "red tape," while Denish discussed her specific 36-point plan.

Martinez's Misfires
Martinez ignored the nation's bad economy (thanks to Bush et al.) and instead characterized its negative impact on New Mexico as Diane's fault -- once again implying that Denish has been governor for eight years. In an exchange about job creation, Martinez actually had the nerve to say that if Denish's job creation ideas were so good, why didn't she implement them during the last eight years? Again, implying that Diane has been the governor when, in fact, she served in the limited role of lieutenant governor -- an office whose powers and responsibilities are narrowly defined by the New Mexico constitution. Even given that, Denish managed to set up a Children's Cabinet and push for Pre-K education statewide.

A Tie?
So I ask you -- does this sound like a debate that was a "tie" with no clear winner? Go watch the videos yourself -- did Martinez make any valid, fact-based points at all? Yet the meme being howled by the right-wing hyena pack that Denish didn't win -- and can't win the election -- just keeps echoing and echoing, very purposefully.

Ignore the Hyenas
You know what to do. Don't listen to the hyenas. Vote early. Volunteer. Canvass. Phone bank. Convince your friends, collegues, neighbors and family that the very future of New Mexico's jobs, lands, water, air and social services is in jeopardy -- if they don't vote and support Democratic candidates across the board. Don't let the hyenas win.

October 20, 2010 at 05:10 PM in 2010 General Election, 2010 NM Governor's Race, Corporatism, Diane Denish, Media, Polling, Susana Martinez | Permalink

Comments

Just voted a straight Dem ticket!

Posted by: Mona | Oct 20, 2010 5:18:11 PM

EPIC new Martinez ad!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqdHGgTcia0

Posted by: Daryl | Oct 20, 2010 5:36:35 PM

Daryl, that's a must see ad! People, watch it and pass in on! This one can go viral.

Posted by: Jan | Oct 20, 2010 5:42:49 PM

Finally someone is saying this out loud. The rich own almost everything including media. Fuck these people. Vote straight Dem ticket!

Posted by: Sandivoice | Oct 20, 2010 7:29:25 PM

I remember when Sanderoff was a good guy. That was long ago. He is owned by the Journal and its kooks now.

Posted by: All the news that's paid for | Oct 20, 2010 8:12:48 PM

BW you are right on some many points, but you have to be challenged on at least one. The corporate "big box" loopholes. Hasn't our party been in control of both the House and the Senate forever? Interestingly, they've never closed the loophole themselves.

Posted by: Doug | Oct 20, 2010 10:42:46 PM

It's somewhat inaccurate to say that Democrats run the House and Senate in the legislature. What usually wins out is a coalition of Republicans and right-wing Democrats who in reality are not Democrats at all. Power positions are held by the likes of Sen. Tim Jennings and Sen. John Arthur Smith, and they work hard to stop progressive bills from moving through the Senate, for instance.

Real Democrats pushed to get rid of the big box loophole.

Posted by: Esq. | Oct 21, 2010 9:31:41 AM

You are right on on all your points. Have you seen the new ad directed to Latinos, to NOT VOTE. The only way the Republicans can win is by suppressing the Democratic vote, and they are doing their best to keep people away from the polls with many types of actions. Please VOTE today if you have not. Vote your conscience and intuition and don't believe all the CR__ from the ads!

It is true in reality we do not have a Dem majority in the NM house and senate. We have many extremely moderate, really R, elected folks. How to get real Dems elected is the challenge.

Posted by: Cheryl Harris | Oct 21, 2010 9:53:59 AM

Today's Albuquerque Journal is like a paid advertisement from the Republican Party. As a headline they dredge up an old story that has no recent developments about AG King and Auditor Balderas. Next a big display that pegs the woman who did the Heinrich Social Security ad as undeserving of depending on her SS check because her husband has old antique cars he worked on for 20 years part by part. Gives Barelas a chance to hold forth on how evil Heinrich is. Add a long story on Herb Denish that underlines Martinez's talking points.

If we had a real newspaper, of course, the top story would be all the filthy money pouring into Martinez's coffers from filthy people. Fox News guy Rupert Murdoch and Swiftboat Bob Perry are funneling even more millions into the Republican Governors Association that then turns around and floods Martinez with cash.

I don't believe the Journal has mentioned that story once.

Posted by: Journal = Fox News (barb) | Oct 21, 2010 10:28:28 AM

Sean Olson? That cow in the headlights that asked questions in the KOAT debate? No wonder he works for the Journal.

Posted by: Fast Eddy | Oct 22, 2010 12:46:40 AM