Weekly politics rail, with an emphasis on Super Tuesday.


 

  Super Duper Fun Facts   Some Super Tuesday facts from Wikipedia.org:   - By way of denoting its political magnitude, some pundits have variously dubbed Super Tuesday "Giga Tuesday," "Mega Giga Tuesday," "Tsunami Tuesday," "Super Duper Tuesday” and “The Tuesday of Destiny.”   - More delegates can be won on Super Tuesday than on any other single day of the primary calendar.   - 24 states will hold primaries or caucuses on Super Tuesday 2008 – a record number.   - 52 percent of all pledged Democratic Party delegates and 41 percent of the total Republican Party delegates are at stake.   - The phrase "Super Tuesday" has been used to refer to presidential primary elections since at least 1984. The 1984 primary season had three Super Tuesdays, ending with "Super Tuesday III," when Walter Mondale finally secured the Democratic nomination. Pundits often mistakenly claim that "Super Tuesday" first came into use for the primary elections that took place on March 8, 1988, in the South.   - As of February 2007, only eight states were scheduled to hold primary or caucus elections on Super Tuesday: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Missouri, New Mexico Democrats, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Utah and West Virginia Republicans.   - The following states changed their elections to Feb. 5 to be more involved in the political process: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho Democrats, Illinois, Kansas Democrats, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana Republicans, New Jersey, New York and Tennessee.   The List   While this year’s election is drawing lots of attention from the casual voter, the process needs some spicing up so that more than 55 percent of voters turn out on Election Day (2004’s numbers). Here are some ideas gleaned from the Super Bowl as to how to make Super Tuesday jazzier:   - Use Roman numerals – somehow that makes the event seem more important and cool. This year would be Super Tuesday VII.   - Have all the candidates gather in a stadium – and sell tickets to the event – and keep track of the score (delegates). John Madden can call the action. “Boom! Obama takes the lead! But wait – Hillary is challenging the play.”   - At the event, combine the Super Bowl halftime show with “Amerian Idol” – candidates must sing in front of Simon. Every insulting thing Simon says about the singer means a loss of one delegate.   - One word: cheerleaders. But we’re not talking about artificially enhanced blonde bombshells – we’ll make all the presidential drop-outs dress up in miniskirts and cheer on their favorites. Take a moment to picture Fred Thompson in such an outfit. …   Quote of Note   "Before the Constitution was written, some, including Benjamin Franklin, believed the vice presidency was entirely unnecessary. He said that if the office were to be created, anyone who served as vice president should be addressed as ‘Your Superfluous Excellency.’ That's a lot better than some of the things I've been called."   Vice President Dick Cheney, showing his lighter side in a speech Jan. 31. – CNN.com   Pol Polls   According to the latest Gallup polls, Barack Obama has wide support among black Democrat voters, while Hillary Clinton has about the same support from Hispanic Democrat voters. The numbers:   Black Democrat voters   Obama: 60%   Clinton: 29%   Hispanic Democrat voters   Clinton: 57%   Obama: 29%   Political Pun-dits   "(John) Edwards' departure leaves the Democratic nomination down to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, which means that the Founding Fathers finally have a winner in their 'How Long Will It Take Our Nation To Nominate A Non-White Male' betting pool. Oh, I can't wait to find out who is the winner. … Ladies and gentlemen, George Mason of Virginia correctly guessed 219 years. Congratulations, Georgey!" -- Jon Stewart   Better Know a Politician: Ted Kennedy   Edward Moore "Ted" Kennedy (born Feb. 22, 1932) is the senior U.S. senator from Massachusetts and a member of the Democratic Party. In office since November 1962, Kennedy is currently the second-longest serving member of the Senate, after Robert Byrd of West Virginia. The most prominent living member of the Kennedy family, Ted is the younger brother of President John F. Kennedy and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy. He is the father of Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy. Ted Kennedy is a staunch advocate of liberal principles, and he is one of the most influential and enduring icons of his party.   He attended the Fessenden School and later Milton Academy and entered Harvard College in 1950. Kennedy was also a member of the Owl Club. He was expelled from Harvard in May 1951 after he was caught cheating during a Spanish examination. Kennedy entered the Army for two years and was assigned to the SHAPE headquarters in Paris. He eventually re-entered Harvard, graduating in 1956. In the 1955 Harvard-Yale football game (which Yale won 21-7), Kennedy caught Harvard's only touchdown pass. In 1958, he attended the Hague Academy of International Law. He earned his law degree from the University of Virginia and was admitted to the Massachusetts bar in 1959. – Wikipedia.org   This Week in Political History   Feb. 3, 1870 - The Fifteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution ratified, grants voting rights regardless of race.   Feb. 4, 1789 - George Washington is unanimously elected to be the first president of the United States by the U.S. Electoral College.   Feb. 4, 1792 - George Washington is unanimously elected to a second term as president of the United States by the U.S. Electoral College.   Feb. 5, 1917 - Congress passes a law, over President Woodrow Wilson's veto, banning most Asian immigration to the United States.   Feb. 6, 1998 - Washington National Airport is renamed Ronald Reagan National Airport.   Feb. 7, 1962 - The U.S. Government bans all Cuban imports and exports.   Feb. 8, 1865 - Delaware voters reject the Thirteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and vote to continue the practice of slavery.   Feb. 9, 1825 - After no presidential candidate received a majority of electoral votes, the House of Representatives elects John Quincy Adams president.   GateHouse News Service