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Volume 16, Number 10
September 23, 2010


news

Also in this section:
Bosco says he has an atom bomb
Martinelli wants a better bunker
Cop slain in Arraijan hostage situation
Investigations against current and former police directors shelved
Gay rights debate
New wiretaps controversy
Guantanamo news restrictions eased
Far right wins GOP primaries, becomes focus of Democrat attacks
Crime scene in Perejil
Toro beats corruption charge due to double jeopardy
Protests and lawsuits against Law 30 continue
War declared

Many things that used to be in a Panama News Briefs feature of the website have now migrated to our constantly updated Facebook page

US election campaign goes negative into the final stretch
by Eric Jackson

The right wing of the US political spectrum held the initiative for most of this past summer, using Fox News and conservative websites to launch barrages of racially charged and factually inaccurate tales of the "New Black Panther Party;" the circumstances of Barack Obama's birth; a decision in a Voting Rights Act case in Port Chester, New York; a deceptively edited version of  a US Department of Agriculture employee's remarks; a governor's allegation about illegal immigrants beheading people in wilderness areas of her state; a rumor about armed Mexicans invading and occupying part of Texas and so on. It culminated with Glenn Beck's Tea Party rally on the anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s 1963 civil rights march and in those months in many GOP primaries the party moved far to the right. By early September the Republicans were leading by 10 points in the "generic poll" of whether people intended to vote for Democrats or Republicans in November.

Then on Labor Day, Barack Obama launched a counter-attack at a union gathering in Milwaukee, the Democratic National Committee ran a television and Internet ad about how extreme the Republicans had become, and like manna from heaven Delaware Republicans gave Democrats a new poster child for the proposition that the GOP has gone nuts by choosing Christine O'Donnell as their party's nominee for Joe Biden's old seat in the Senate. Within two weeks Democrats had established a slight edge over Republicans in the generic polls.

The situation is volatile. GOP leaders are advising the candidates and rank-and-file to drop the ideological appeals, and there is bickering within the party about this. On the Democratic side the candidates are mostly running on local issues, while the president, the national committees and especially the rank-and-file activists are blasting the GOP as extremists whose only program is tax cuts for the rich.

Here in Panama, both Democrats Abroad and Republicans Abroad are working to mobilize US citizens to cast absentee ballots in November's elections. Astute people in both camps know that whether or not one or both houses of Congress change hands is an uncertain and probably close question.

The following are various videos that reflect the back-and-forth of the US campaign, and in several of them the views of the far right GOP primary winners that Democrats are pointing to as reasons to keep the Republicans from gaining control over one or both houses of Congress:

Republican John Boehner, who aspires to be Speaker of the House

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California)

Republican Senate Campaign ad, attacking Democrat Jack Conway

Democratic National Committee ad, attacking the GOP tax plan

Ken Buck, the Republican candidate for US Senate in Colorado, opposing
the 17th Amendement, which provides for direct election of US senators

Joe Miller, the GOP candidate for US Senate in Alaska,
claims that unemployment benefits are unconstitutional

Christine O'Donnell's greatest hits


Also in this section:
Bosco says he has an atom bomb
Martinelli wants a better bunker
Cop slain in Arraijan hostage situation
Investigations against current and former police directors shelved
Gay rights debate
New wiretaps controversy
Guantanamo news restrictions eased
Far right wins GOP primaries, becomes focus of Democrat attacks
Crime scene in Perejil
Toro beats corruption charge due to double jeopardy
Protests and lawsuits against Law 30 continue
War declared


Many things that used to be in a Panama News Briefs feature of the website have now migrated to our constantly updated Facebook page


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