As a spate of new studies find positive results from the legalization of pot in Colorado and Washington state, including a dip in traffic fatalities in Colorado — and with Washington state accruing $3 million in taxes since pot was legalized in July, Colorado tallying $18 million in pot-tax revenue since January, including $7 million in July alone, and a projection that $3.1 billion in taxes would be collected if all 50 states legalized weed — voters in Alaska, Oregon and Washington, D.C. will decide whether to legalize marijuana on Nov. 4, and Floridians will decide whether to allow the sale of medical marijuana.
Vox.com has a round-up of the initiatives:
In the six years since 2008, when she lost the election and failed to become vice president of the United States, and the five years since she abruptly quit her job as governor of Alaska midway through her first term, Sarah Palin has devoted her life to nothing other than a relentless pursuit of the spotlight.
Like Newt Gingrich and Ann Coulter, to name just two, Palin has become a practitioner of what could be called “pull my finger” politics. The tactic is simple. Palin et al make a carefully crafted outrageous comment, essentially saying to the media, “Pull my finger — no, really, pull my finger.” The media falls for it by reporting the incendiary remark, which, of course, evokes a firestorm of criticism — which is to say, a big stink — that persists through multiple news cycles during which everyone is talking about nothing else but guess who.
A recent example occurred in May when Palin addressed a meeting of gun nuts in Texas. Speaking to a lunchtime crowd, the woman whom Sen. McCain chose to be a septuagenarian’s heartbeat away from the world’s largest nuclear arsenal compared Christian baptism to torture. Complaining that liberals coddle terrorists, she proclaimed that were she the president, “they would know that waterboarding is how we baptize terrorists.”
As intended, this nasty bit of right-wing sacrilege evoked outrage, and not just from liberals, like the National Religious Campaign against Torture, but also from troglodytes at the American Conservative, one of whom described her speech as, “just witless, red-meat blathering, delivered in that nasal whine of hers that makes it sound like she’s chewing wads of tinfoil.”
I’m not even sure if she still lives in the state.”
— Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK), in a Huffington Post interview, saying he has “no worry or fear” of Sarah Palin challenging him in the U.S. Senate race, adding, “I’m not sure she even knows what’s going on.”
The cost of a single ad on a single radio station placed by the Republican National Committee in Anchorage, Alaska. The RNC had announced “a fresh round in an expected torrent of campaign ads targeting Sen. Mark Begich and other Democrats” over Obamacare but the ad blast “turned out to be more of a sprinkle,” the Anchorage Daily News reports.
I would think she would want to at least speak briefly to the new head of the Alaska Republican Party. But no, never met the lady. Never spoken to her. I have seen her once.
— Alaska Republican Party Chair Peter Goldberg, on Sarah Palin’s announcement that she is considering a U.S. Senate run, Alaska Public Media reports.
Percentage by which Sarah Palin (R) leads a possible Republican U.S. Senate primary, followed by Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell (R) at 30% and 2010 GOP Senate nominee Joe Miller (R) at 14%, a new Harper Polling survey in Alaska finds.
Maybe his new year’s resolution was to quit being a schmuck.
After almost two months, Alaska Republican Senate candidate Joe Miller announced Friday that he will end his legal challenge to incumbent Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s write-in victory, The Anchorage Daily News reported.
Speaking at a news conference in Anchorage, Miller said it was time to accept the “practical realities” of recent court rulings that had gone against him.
Then again, being a schmuck is hard to quit.
In his first interview after his public concession, Miller appeared on “John King, USA,” where CNN’s Ed Henry asked him if he had called Murkowski to personally concede. Miller said, “I have not called her. In fact, I don’t have her number.” When asked if he had sought out her phone number through the Alaska GOP, he answered, “Well, I think we already have conceded. We’ve asked for it before. I don’t have it.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) found out what it was like to be shunned by her party during the 2010 election. While high-profile types like Sarah and Todd Palin backed tea bagger Joe Miller, Murkowski refused to cede her office after her initial primary loss, despite calls to quit from such GOP notables as Sens. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), and of course, the quitter queen herself, Sarah Palin. Instead, Murkowski made history by winning as a write-in candidate.
Now all those Republicans who kicked Murkowski to the curb are finding out they might be in for a very long six years.
…Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski seems to be declaring political independence.
She cast a yes vote for all four of President Obama’s big legislative items in the lame duck congressional session: don’t ask, don’t tell; the tax cut compromise; the START treaty; and the DREAM act.
With the Senate almost evenly split in the coming session, a move to a more moderate position could make Murkowski a swing vote on any important issue.
So instead of being sidelined for not, as Palin put it, heeding “the will of the people,” Murkowski could be the highest profile senator since Joe Lieberman. Good going, Republican party!
The campaign for the Alaska U.S. Senate seat has taken a dramatic turn in the past days. Joe Miller, the candidate chosen by Sarah Palin to take out her enemy, GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski, has been accused of ethical violations that may have led to his forced resignation as a part-time local government lawyer last fall.
He has also been accused of using other people’s computers without their permission to vote for himself by proxy when he ran (unsuccessfully) for chairman of the Alaska Republican Party in 2008. A job he sought, he said, in order to weed out corruption in the party.
Miller, a rookie in major league politics, has reacted to the controversy by stonewalling the media, a move that has had the predictable effect of bringing the local media’s interest in the story to a rolling boil.
Alaska Dispatch, which took an early lead in the investigation, recently sued Miller’s former employer, the Fairbanks North Star Borough, in an attempt to discover whether Miller was forced to resign or was fired outright. Over the weekend, the Dispatch framed its pursuit of information this way: