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Posts published in “Day: January 12, 2008”

Four debates

Need another political debate fix? Hey, the Democrats running for the Senate have got you covered: The four candidates (yeah, there are four in all) have agreed to four debates so far, with the open possibility of still more.

The Eugene Register-Guard's political blog lists them: January 22 at Pendleton, March 7 at Eugene, April 5 at Newport and a fourth on April 15 sponsored by KGW TV and the Oregonian, so likely though not positively in Portland. The latter two debates may not necessarily include all four, but presumably will include the two best-known, best-organized and most visible, House Speaker Jeff Merkley and Portland activist Steve Novick.

Sounds good. Interesting that the first will be in Pendleton; some road practice, maybe, before hitting the population centers?

Doing what they can

The frustration must be considerable. The Republicans in Idaho have a strong favorite - former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney - among the Republican candidates for president. But what can they do? no action by Idaho Republicans will have any practical effect on the race until May, and unless this thing goes to the convention (to be sure, a live possibility at this point) they won't have any real say in it.

So they did a non-binding straw vote today. (First place with 42 votes, predictably, went to Romney, second to former Senator Fred Thompson, with 21.) It doesn't effect convention delegates, which is the hard currency in securing nominations. But who knows? Maybe there's some limited psychological value, especially right now, as Romney is in a fierce-tight struggle for supremacy with Arizona Senator John McCain in Michigan. If his Idaho backers were going to do something, this may well have been the time.