Rep Steve Vaillancourt


This Week's Trivia--Shaheen, The Southern Teacher

  1. shameless audacity; impudence.
    synonyms: audacitycheek, guts, nerve, boldness, temerity
    "it took a lot of chutzpah for her to walk in on Owen's bachelor party"
When Miriam Webster's Company publishes a new dictionary, they ought to print a picture of Jeanne Shaheen next to the word chutzpah.

The Missouri native (unlike most media, except this blog, Chuck Todd actually referred to the Show Me state during last night's debate) continues to attempt to label New Hampshire native Scott Brown as a carpetbagger.

Talk about unbridled hypocrisy.

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

I've long known that Jeanne Shaneen was born in Missouri, but not until I googled her did I fully realize what an outsider to New Hampshire she really is (not that there's anything wrong with that...unless of course you try to label your opponent as an outsider).

After she left Missouri, Jeanne Shaheen didn't put New Hampshire first by choosing to go to college here.  No indeed; she headed to Pennsylvania.

After losing her Senate race to John Sununu in 2002, she hardly put New Hampshire first by getting back to work for the Granite State.  No, not at all...she shuffled off to the Kennedy School in Boston in the great tax and spend state of Massachusetts.

At least, Scott Brown is moving back to New Hampshire; Jeanne Shaheen preferred to take her liberal ideology...after all, she voted with Barack Obama 99 percent of the Massachusetts.

Such rampant chutzpah...such unbridled sublime hypocrisy.
Pause...for an interruption.

"Point of order, point of order, Rep. Vaillancourt, point of order," I hear.  "This is supposed to be the week's trivia question.  You'll have plenty of chances to malign Jeanne Shaheen later.  Will you get to the trivia question?"

The point of order well taken.

Here's the question then.

Missouri native Jeanne Shaheen, after being schooled in Pennsylvania, and long before abandoing New Hampshire to shuffle off to the Kennedy School in Boston (that's Massachusetts last time I checked) actually taught high school.  
In which southern state?







I hardly expect you to take my word for the answer...although you can be sure I'd be far more truthful than the Missouri native was about her opposition to nuclear power.  To be perfectly fair, let's allow google to give us the answer of Mississippi.


Early life, education, and pre-political career[edit]

Shaheen was born Cynthia Jeanne Bowers in Saint Charles, Missouri, the daughter of Belle E. and Ivan E. Bowers.[2] She is the wife of Lebanese-American attorney and political operative Bill Shaheen. They have three children. She graduated from high school in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, and earned a bachelor's degree in English from Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania and a master's degree from the University of Mississippi.[3] She taught high school in Mississippi


While we're into wikipedia and shaheen, let's check this out--


In 2001 Shaheen tried to implement a 2.5 percent sales tax, the first broad-based tariff of its kind in history of New Hampshire. Unlike neighboring New England states New Hampshire does not have a sales tax. The state's legislature rejected her proposal.[17] She also proposed an increase in the state's cigarette tax and a 4.5 percent capital gains tax.



Brown Leads Shaheen; Dems Stack Debate Crowd


Less than 24 hours before they'll be debating for the second time in three days, Missouri native Jeanne Shaheen and New Hampshire native Scott Brown are virtually tied in a new poll from New England College for NH1 (WBIN-TV) which will be joined by CNN in hosting tomorrow night's debate.

Actually, Scott Brown leads by a point for the second week in a row, 48-47, and Shaheen's once double digit led among women is down to only three points.  

But don't take my word for it.  Here's the pertinent line from the NH1 story.

"The big news is that Senator Shaheen's advantage among women is dwindling. Looking back to our September 24th Poll, Senator Shaheen enjoyed a 12 point lead among women over Brown. In this most recent poll, her lead among women is down to just over three percent," added Lesperance, director of the Center for Civic Engagement which includes the New England College Polling Institute.

In another NEC poll, Governor Maggie Hassan leads challenger Walt Havenstein by eight points (51-43), but that's actually bad news for Havenstein who was within five points in the same poll a week ago.

In another Senate poll just out, from the Democratic-oriented PPP, Shaheen leads Brown by four points, 49-45.

Stacking The Concord Debate Crowd

Since I so dislike Jeanne Shaheen, I really don't trust my reaction to last night's debate.  The only neutral party I've heard today was a U.S. News reporter who told Julie Mason on the Press Pool on POTUS (SiriusXM 3-6 p.m.) that Brown had won.

The debate was moderated by Meet the Press host Chuck Todd who seemed totally unable to control the Democrat-stacked crowd.  Despite being told only to applaud at the beginning and end of the debate, the audience not only cheered loudly throughout for the Missouri native but also loudly laughed at more than one occasion when Scott Brown tried to answer questions.

My sources tell me that Democrats were actually busing students in from both Dartmouth College and Lebanon High School. 
Apparently Shaheen, feeling more and more insecure these final two weeks, needs all the help she can get.  In constantly interrupting Scott Brown, she seemed to forget how she once supported the Seabrook Nuclear power plant (I can't wait for the fact checkers on that one; ah, here we are; that was quick).

  1. Jeanne Shaheen Lied About Opposing Nuclear Power ...
    13 hours ago - During last night's New Hampshire Senate debate, Jeanne Shaheenstraight up lied about her opposition to a nuclear power plant at Seabrook.
  2. Senate Democrat Average See Full Scorecard6% opposingNuclear power in 1987.
When she tried to pander to women voters by expressing support for paycheck equity, Shaheen was slapped down by Brown who stated that females received only 95 percent of the salaries of men on Shaheen's staff while females received 121 percent on his (Brown's staff).

Talk about not only talking the talk but walking the walk, that's Scott Brown.

When asked to explain what they learned in their previous losses, Brown stressed how important support from his wife and daughters was.

Shaheen tried to blame her 2002 loss to John Sununu on outside factors beyond her control.

Oh really, Jeannie?

Outside Shaheen having spent a great deal of time in her third term as governor (just prior to the 2002 race) trying to force a 2.5 percent sales tax on the people of New Hampshre (her own Democrats in the New Hamsphire House joined Republicans to shoot her down; I remember well; I was there).
Oh yes, there was also a proposed 4.5 percent capital gains tax--how quickly Team Shaheen would have us forget!

Shaheen, of course, was governor on that spring day in 1999 when the New Hampshire House passed an income tax on to the Senate 194-190 (with only seven Democrats voting against it--I was one of the seven). The Senate changed the bill, and it ultimately failed when it returned to the House.  Shaheen was handcuffed at the time because House leader Peter Burling very much wanted the income tax.

Hmmm...Peter Burling...maybe that's the outside force Shaheen was referring to last night.  Whatever happened to Peter Burling, any way?

Truth be told, however, Shaheen should remember Shakespeare's line from "Julius Caesar". "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves." 

One of Jeanne Shaheen's problems, just one of them mind you, is that she is incapable of acknowledging that she is personally responsible for anything...kind of like the man she voted with 99 percent of the time. Yes, that would be Barack Obama.

O-b-a-m-a...S-h-a-h-e-e-n...."Close enough".


The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars

"The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
But in ourselves, that we are underlings."

Julius Caesar (I, ii, 140-141)

Hey Nate, Try This Sports/Politics Analogy

Senate Update: The Clock Is Ticking


                Let’s venture into the sweet spot, where sports and politics interest.

                I confess to being a recovering sports junkie.  I wrote sports for my high school paper (The Commodore’s Comments…I kid you not).  I broadcast seven sports in college, and am one of the few non-athletes to be inducted into the Plymouth State Sports Hall of Fame.  Until someone claims otherwise, I’m going to take credit as being the first person to broadcast a soccer game (my favorite sport) on a commercial radio station in New Hampshire.

                I’ve spent far too many hours of my life rooting for a particular team and only recently, thanks in a large part to the World Cup, discovered that one can enjoy a sporting event, perhaps even more, by not caring who wins (I have zero interest in rooting for either team in the World Series).

                But enough on sports.  Regular readers should know that I’m far more a political than a sports junkie these days.

                That’s why I love it when Five Thirty Eight’s Nate Silver (a far better political than World Cup prognosticator) peppers his political commentary with sports analogies.

                Last week, in writing about the New Hampshire Senate race, Silver referred to how a team trailing by ten points in the third quarter would actually not improve its chances of winning much if it moved within seven points entering the final quarter.  It makes sense—less time to catch up.

                 Here's how Silver phrased it:  "Yep, time for another sports analogy. Say an NFL team leads 17-7 and has the ball at its own 20-yard line to start the third quarter. Its win probability is 83 percent. The third quarter is a bit wild, but the same team leads 27-20 at the end of it. Although its lead has narrowed, its win probability will have barely budged (it’s about 81 percent at the start of the fourth quarter) because there’s less time for the trailing team to complete a comeback".

                That’s all fine and good, I thought, but there’s an even better sports analogy that could well come into play as these United States Senate races, including the hotly contested Scott Brown/Jeanne Shaheen race, head into the final two weeks.

                In sports, especially in football, the problem is scoring too soon.  Let’s say a team is down by five points with two minutes to go; it scores a touchdown to move two points ahead but leaves a minute on the clock and the opponent comes back to kick a field goal in the final seconds.

                That happens all the time (it nearly happened to the Patriots against the Jets last Thursday night).

                In politics, the problem is peaking too soon.  Scott Brown cut a ten point lead in half and then cut it in half again with two weeks left on the clock.  Would it be good or bad for him to take the lead in the next few days? 

                One could argue that, in fact, it would be a bad thing, that he might be peaking too soon.  It would be far better to be within a point going into that final weekend and then hit the field goal as time runs out.

                That’s not the only race in which this analogy could come into play.  In North Carolina, Kay Hagan undoubtedly peaked a few weeks ago.  Her four point lead is down to just over a point, and even Five Thirty Eight thinks she might be in trouble as Thom Tillis lines up for that last second field goal.  (I understand  Hagan is faced with a financial “scandal” in these final days, something about her husband retaining stimulus money when a project came in under budget).

                In Kansas, clearly Independent Greg Orman peaked too soon.  He was ahead by ten points, including in an NBC poll which Chuck Todd insisted on highlighting  on Meet the Press last week to the exclusion of all other polls which show the race now dead even (shame on you Chuck; maybe it’s time to bring back David Gregory).  Pundits on MSNBC’s Morning Joe this morning seemed to think Senator Pat Roberts is lining up that last minutes field goal (my analogy not theirs).  In fact, Silver himself has dropped Orman’s advantage to 54-46. 

                Applying our sports analogy to Kansas, Pat Roberts seems to be in just the right position on the field as the clock winds down.

                The same might apply in Georgia where Michelle Nunn has pulled to within less than appoint of David Perdue.  But is she peaking too soon, scoring with too much time left on the clock.

                To be fair to Democrats (and I always try to be fair), the peaked too soon analogy might, just might, apply to Republicans Joni Ernst in Kansas and Cory Gardner in Colorado…although Colorado incumbent Tom “Uterus” Udall (hey, Huff Post PC police, don’t blame me; I’m only parroting what I’ve heard often this past week) seems to be fumbling at every opportunity rather than setting up for a late field.  Yesterday, he couldn’t even name three books which most influenced his life or even the latest music he’d listened to, and it wasn’t Fox News which pointed out this blunder but rather the liberal Chris Matthews on MSNBC.

                Fumbles trump clock management any day, and Udall can’t seem to keep his hands on the ball.  As for Joni Ernst, who knows?  The “scoring too soon” sports analogy needs to play out…in Iowa, in New Hampshire, in North Carolina, in Georgia and probably in other states Nate Silver would be better at diagnosing.

                Extra dose of trivia—what one book did Udall come up with?  Hint—it most assuredly was not written by JFK!

                Off the top of my head, for fiction, I’d go with “To Kill A Mockingbird”, “Huck Finn” and “The Cider House Rules.”   For non-fiction-- “The Rise and Fall of The Third Reich”, Ron Chernow’s biography of George Washington, and “Redeeming the Dream”,  the new Ted Olson/David Boies book on the marriage equality struggle.

                Feel free to claim them as your own, Senator Uterus.


Chuck Todd Is Doing Worse Than David Gregory As Meet ...
Sep 25, 2014 - It may seem hard to believe but minus the first week where he had an interview with President Obama, Chuck Todd's ratings on Meet The Press ...

Media Watch--Fox Blows Pistorius Verdict; CNN Dishes Dish



CNN and several other Turner-owned cable channels have disappeared from Dish Network ...



                If you were watching Fox News as Judge Thokozile Masipa read the verdict live from South Africa last night, for a few minutes you might have though Oscar The Blade Runner Pistorius got off with no jail time.

                I may be the only one who caught this, but I’m just as sure about it as I was when Red Eye reported about a survey two weeks ago that shows unattractive candidates might be at as much as a seven percent disadvantage over the more attractive, a note that sparked my controversial Kuster/Garcia blog.

                In fact, it was while watching Red Eye last night (at 3:30 a.m.) that I was switched to South Africa for the hour-long reading of the verdict, not exactly thrilling middle of the night TV but I was fascinated by it.

                At around 4:20 a.m., the judge was alluding to other cases the defense had asked her to consider in sentencing.  She read verbatim that the accused in one of the cases was given a suspended sentence, and within moments, whoever was in charge of graphics at Fox News had typed out a chyron (one of those notes at the bottom of the screen) that Pistorius had received a suspended sentence.

                I was wide enough awake to say to myself, “What are they (Fox News) talking about.  The judge is reading from another case.  How stupid can these people be?”

                Sure enough, I switched over to MSNBC and there was no such graphic.   (Apparently CNN is feuding with the Dish—I’m one of 14 million subscribers—and while CNN channels, like HLN, are off the Dish, we’re getting MSNBC instead, a market improvement in my opinion—I long ago gave up on HLN and Nancy disgrace).

                Anyway, I switched back to Fox to see how long the erroneous chyron would remain up.

                It was only a few minutes, but I was left wondering how a major network could get it so wrong.

                This was not the first time Fox has embarrassed itself, and I’m not talking about its extreme right wing unfair and unbalanced bias.

                A year or so ago, I was watching Shep Smith in the afternoon; he was covering one of those car chases when all of a sudden, the driver got out of the car and blew his brains out live on TV coast to coast.  So much for the seven second delay.

                At least, Shep had the good grace to apologize.  Wanna bet that no one of Fox deems an apology necessary for it 4:20 a.m. blunder last night?

                In fact, I’m wondering if any other media will pick up on it.

                As for the verdict, Judge Masipa seemed to be covering all the bases, tempering the need for mercy and rehabilitation with the need to send a message that such murders cannot be tolerated.

                She had the option of zero to 15 years prison time and settled on five; I thought something in the seven to ten year range seemed appropriate, but hey, I’m not South African and should avoid bringing  an American bias to the story.

                MSNBC, heads and shoulders better than Fox (and I’m a conservative) reported that the prosecution would appeal the sentence if it came down at less than ten years, certainly not the kind of thing that could happen in America, but I repeat, we must avoid looking at this through American eyes.

                The real story is that Fox News once again proved totally incompetent in covering a major event.

Oscar Pistorius sentenced to five years for girlfriend's killing

Reuters on · 9 hours ago
Image: Oscar Pistorius and Reeva Steenkamp in a picture from Facebook.  (Facebook)
  • The 'Blade Runner' has been sentenced to five years in prison for the negligent killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year.


If Politics Were Limbo, Democrats Would Be In Great Shape

If we were playing the limbo, Barack Obama and his Democrats would be in great shape...because he's going lower and lower, in both the country and New Hamsphire.  To paraphrase Finley Peter Dunne ("politics ain't beanball"), I feel the need to say that "poliitics ain't limbo".  

Finley Peter Dunne - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The fictional Mr. Dooley expounded upon political and social issues of the day .... of the aphorism "politics ain't beanbag", referring to the rough side of political ..

How low can you go is clearly not the game we play here.  

Even Rasmussen has Obama down six points today; were we to remove Rasmussen from the Real Clear Politics data, the President would be at minus 13.2 (79 divided by 6); as it is, he's minus 12.2.  As if that's not bad enough for Jeanne Shaheen, Carol Shea Porter, and Annie Kuster, Obama has slipped to minus 14.6 here in New Hampshire (with more Ebola yet to be baked into the numbers).

Remember a few weeks ago (I was in Montreal when I wrote it), I referred to minus 13 as a benchmark; above that Obama number and Democrats could likely survive, at least to some degree; below that and they're paddling in troubled waters.

Can anyone spell the words b-l-o-o-d b-a-t-h?  

To borrow from the year's best commerical, "Close enough".  

No wonder Shaheen is on record saying that Obama is too busy in D.C. to make it up here to New Hampshire prior to November 4.  

What a fun game--How far and fast can Democrats run from the man they were voting with 99 percent of the time just a few years ago?  

It's actually actually quite comical to watch a newly coiffed Debbie Wasserman Schultz (the curls are gone!) try to spin this crap into gold as she attempted to do yesterday on Fox News Sunday.

Self deceit is the worst kind of deceit. 


In what has to be the TV booking of week amongst the Sunday's shows, “Fox News Sunday” ..



Obama Nationwide Approval

National PollDateSampleApproveDisapproveSpread
RCP Average 10/8 - 10/19 -- 41.4 53.6 -12.2
Gallup 10/17 - 10/19 1500 A 40 55 -15
Rasmussen Reports 10/17 - 10/19 1500 LV 46 52 -6
FOX News 10/12 - 10/14 831 LV 39 53 -14
Reuters/Ipsos 10/11 - 10/15 1722 A 39 53 -14
The Economist/YouGov 10/11 - 10/13 710 RV 45 53 -8
ABC News/Wash Post 10/9 - 10/12 629 LV 39 57 -18
NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl 10/8 - 10/12 1000 RV 42 52 -10

All President Obama Job Approval Polling Data

President Obama Job Approval in New Hampshire

RCP Average 9/29 - 10/19 -- 40.2 54.8 -14.6
Suffolk/Boston Herald 10/16 - 10/19 500 LV 40 56 -16
UMass Amherst/WBZ 10/10 - 10/15 322 LV 38 57 -19
New England College 10/9 - 10/9 1081 LV 44 52 -8
High Point/SurveyUSA 10/4 - 10/8 824 LV 41 54 -13
WMUR/UNH 9/29 - 10/5 681 A 38 55 -17

2014 Generic Congressional Vote

Polling Data

PollDateSampleRepublicans (R)Democrats (D)Spread
RCP Average 10/3 - 10/19 -- 46.6 43.2 Republicans +3.4
Rasmussen Reports 10/13 - 10/19 3500 LV 41 41 Tie
FOX News 10/12 - 10/14 831 LV 45 42 Republicans +3
ABC News/Wash Post 10/9 - 10/12 629 LV 50 43 Republicans +7
NBC News/Wall St. Jrnl 10/8 - 10/12 666 LV 48 47 Republicans +1
CBS News 10/3 - 10/6 575 LV 49 43 Republicans +6

All 2014 Generic Congressional Vote Polling Data