Thursday, February 25, 2010

There are limits to frugality, unless you are Sestak

From The Morning Call:

Sestak pays his staff the least in Pennsylvania's Congressional delagation:

"He asks aides to work six days a week, 12-plus hours a day. Staff salaries are among the lowest on Capitol Hill, according to congressional records. No one in Pennsylvania's 19-member congressional delegation had a smaller payroll than Sestak in the 18-month period that ended June 30, records show, while only two members had larger staffs."

What does he do with the savings? Sounds like publicly financed campaigning to me:

"The money Sestak saves on staff salaries is in part devoted to constituent mailings and brochures highlighting his positions on issues. Sestak last year spent more on mail than anyone in the delegation."

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sestak Loses Campaign Staffers

In this piece the latest defections in Sestak's campaign staff are discussed.
"At least four staffers with significant political portfolios have left Congressman Joe Sestak’s (D-7) Senate campaign in recent weeks, potentially leaving the Democratic challenger at an organizational deficit just three months before the primary, has learned."
Perhaps some insiders see the futility of Sestak's campaign after the overwhelming affirmation of the State Committee last week. Apparently, they are also tired of being underpaid so that Joe can look like he has more cash available:
"even those who have left on good terms cite the low salaries as a key reason."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Early Polls: good incentive to get working!

There is a widely referenced Franklin & Marshall College (F&MC) Poll (not a poll of college Students, but the former Keystone Poll) That casts a gloomy outlook for Senator Specter.

Read it for yourself, and read an article in the Pike County Press that paints an even rosier picture for Republican challenger, Pat Toomey. As a comment to that article, I wrote:
"Certain polls may be biased, but the written analysis is always biased. This one is particularly troubling. When asked about Toomey approximately 3/4 of respondents “Don’t Know” Toomey or are “Undecided” about Toomey. The poll preference is a reflection of anti-incumbent sentiment, not pro-Toomey excitement."

"It is long way from February to November, but my guess is the more that Toomey is known, the more his “unfavorable” numbers will climb."

There is also a criticism of the poll's small numbers and differentiation of "likely voters" and "registered voters" at this point in an election by FiveThirtyEight.

This is what I learn from the poll:
  1. Incumbents have an uphill battle this year.
  2. There is a motivated Republican base that will support anyone with an (R) after their name. (Remember, Specter was endorsed by those left-wing-nuts George W Bush, Rick Santorum, and even Pat Toomey(!) last time around.)
I'd encourage everyone to look at the candidates and what they will do in the Senate, and the consequences of electing one of these guys. If Pennsylvanians do that, I am sure that Pat Toomey's numbers will not look so rosy.