Thursday, February 23, 2006

Someone you should know about.

I am not sure how many people know who Joel Klein is. I didn't. That is until I moved to NYC and got involved in education. While Joel is certainly a Democrat (served in the Clinton White House and at DOJ) he is doing (or should I say trying?) some revolutionary things in our nation's largest public school system (merit-pay, higher accountability, less red tape, longer hours, etc). Known primarily for his prosecution of Microsoft in the government's anti-trust case, he was appointed by Mayor Bloomberg to head the NYC school system. His run has thus far been characterized by fighting with head of the school teachers union over issues that are near and dear to many of us on this blog.

A recent column by John Stossel made me realized that many in this country, particularly outside of NYC don't know who he is. You should. Take a minute to google him and see what you find out.

Here are a few money quotes from Stossel's column:
We tolerate mediocrity, and people get paid the same whether they're outstanding or whether they're average or, indeed, whether they're way below average.

Klein said that out of 80,000 teachers, only two have been fired for incompetence in the past two years. That's because it takes years for a principal to fire an incompetent teacher.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Ohio 6th up for grabs

For anyone who was really starting to think that the Democrats in Ohio were getting it together the 6th District proves that they are not. This is the seat the Strickland currently holds, and was expected to be a competitive race before the filing deadline. However, it no longer looks competitive based on the fact that the top Democratic candidate, State Senator Charles Wilson, did not get the required number of signatures.

This might not seem that odd when you look at state wide races where they require tons of signatures from every county. However in a Congressional race they require 50 valid signatures. That should mean going to one county's central committee meeting.

That is one more seat in the House, and one more reason why the Democrats will never regain power in Ohio.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Why Boehner won...

In the days following Boehner's victory as Majority Leader we have been evaluating the reasons for what some in the media called a 'surprise' victory.

On election day:
-Blunt's nominating speeches were reported to be somewhat uninspiring.
-Shadegg's nominating speeches seemed to emphasize 'change' which could be construed as 'not Blunt' and were a bit more fiery.
-Boehner had strong nominating speeches particularly from Ways and Means Chairman Bill Thomas who is none as a powerful player. He was previously uncommitted as were most of his committee members.
-Following the first ballot most of Shadeggs votes (though not all) went to Boehner.
-Some of Blunt's supporters were committed only for the first ballot but felt free to vote for whoever on the second.

Leading up to the election:
-Shadegg's entry focused the race around reform/change.
-Two-way races favor incumbents. Forcing a second ballot favored the challenger.
-Shadegg's entry was too late. The momentum he generated was shifted to Boehner.
-The media was largely unfavorable to Blunt.
-Conservative pundits, bloggers, and columnists generally supported Shadegg or Boehner.
-Some viewed Blunt's tactics as a bit heavy-handed.
-Boehner showed his ability to work with Democrats by passing Pension reform while Republican leadership thought it was not possible in the last session.
-Boehner had forged strong relationships with fellow committee chairs.
-Blunt was viewed as a Delay protege

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Boehner Wins!

After the 2nd ballot, the new House Majority leader is the represenative from Ohio John Boehner!

Final Vote:

More to come...

Check below for results!

New to this technology but the results were flip-flopped.

Majority Leader Elections in progress....

We are getting updates from the inside.

The 1st ballots have been cast. It seems there was some confusion after the representative from Puerto Rico was left off the list but now the number seem to be accurate.

Nominating speeches were made by Granger for Blunt, Thomas for Boehner (which is a huge get!), and Souder for Shadegg.

We will keep you posted.

1st Ballot Results!

As expected the first ballot led to a 2nd ballot between Blunt and Boehner.

RBlunt 110
JShadegg 40
2 write-in votes for jim ryun.

Shadegg has withdrawn