Republican Senate Candidate Signs Young Woman’s Insulin Pump Despite Knowing It Looks Bad [Updated]

Aspiring Georgia senator David Perdue is not Harry Styles, but he is close. At a campaign event yesterday, a young lady whose age almost definitely ends in -teen asked the candidate to take a Sharpie to her torso. "No way — ha ha," he responds awkwardly (and logically), before uncapping his marker and doing it anyway. "No pictures on this!" he says, only serving to make it a bit creepier.

Update: Another angle provided by the Perdue campaign appears to show the candidate signing the girl's insulin pump, not her body. See below.


How Well Does the Clinton Brand Still Play in the Conservative South?

“At election time, sometimes people come get me. And I feel like an old racehorse in a stable — people just take me out, put me on the track, slap me on the rear, and see if I can run around one more time,” Bill Clinton told a group of rallygoers who turned out to see the former president in New Hampshire last week. He’s been using some version of that joke a lot in the final month of the campaign, and you can be sure he’s going to use it more: Across the country, worried Democrats are counting on the Clinton magic to save them from Election Day humiliation.


How Conservatives Justify Poll Taxes

During the Obama era, the Republican Party has made the modern revival of the poll tax a point of party dogma. Direct poll taxes have been illegal for 50 years, but the GOP has discovered a workaround. They have passed laws requiring photo identification, forcing prospective voters who lack them, who are disproportionately Democratic and nonwhite, to undergo the extra time and inconvenience of acquiring them. They have likewise fought to reduce early voting hours on nights and weekends, thereby making it harder for wage workers and single parents, who have less flexibility at work and in their child care, to cast a ballot.



6 Actually Interesting Things You Missed in Thursday’s Midterm Races

The midterm elections are in 11 days, and no one cares. Just 15 percent of Americans have said they’re following the races very closely, what with Ebola now in New York City and ISIS abroad, not to mention a new season of Scandal. (Young people are even worse. Damn Instagram.)

For those without the time or untamable wonkiness necessary to track polls for, say, an Iowa Senate race, Intelligencer is rounding up the important, telling, or otherwise absurd moments from the previous long day on the campaign trail. So at least you’ll know these people’s names when they’re running our country next year.


This Statistic Shows the Republican Demographic Crisis Is Still Getting Worse

The Pew Research Survey, which is the gold standard of political polling owing to its large sample sizes and careful methodology, has a new survey of the midterm electorate. The headline result shows 47 percent of likely voters planning to vote for the Democratic candidate in their district, against 46 percent planning to vote Republican, which is too small a margin to overcome the Republican tilt of the House map. But the most fascinating result is the continued long-term polarization of the electorate by race.


Republican Governors Just Might Save the Democratic Senate

Everybody agrees that Republicans will win the midterm elections and stand a better-than-ever chance of controlling the Senate. For months, a debate has raged over why. One analysis is structural. Democrats rely heavily on minorities and the young, who tend to skip midterm elections, making the electorate more Republican than the one that shows up at the polls every four years. Additionally, the Senate races this year force Democrats to defend far more seats, many of which are held in Republican territory.

The competing analysis is that the election represents a “wave.” Wave-theory advocates don’t deny that structural forces favor the GOP, but they tend to emphasize a backlash by the voters against President Obama and his policies. This way of thinking has particular appeal to conservatives, like Michael Barone (“That should settle the ongoing argument in psephological circles about whether this is a “wave” year”), Jennifer Rubin (“The intensely anti-Obama wave will lift many, but not all, Republican boats”), and Josh Kraushaar. Wave advocates see the midterms as America’s righteous punishment against liberal overreach.


Andrew Cuomo Is Losing the Coveted Sopranos Cast Member Vote

Ahead of tonight's mostly meaningless New York gubernatorial debate, the political surrogates are doing anything they can to make the race between Andrew Cuomo and whatshisface anywhere close to interesting. "Andrew Cuomo won't debate Rob Astorino on TV one-on-one," says Vincent Pastore, best known for playing Salvatore "Big Pussy" Bonpensiero on The Sopranos, in a YouTube video eagerly highlighted by the Republican campaign. "And they call me Big Pussy?" Oh snap.


Republican National Committee Co-Chair Calls Wisconsin Voters Stupid to Their Face

With Governor Scott Walker locked in a tight race for reelection, what the state's Republicans really needed was someone from out of town to insult the electorate in front of a local newspaper. Enter RNC co-chair Sharon Day: "It's not going to be an easy election, it's a close election. Like I said, much closer than I can even understand why," she told a crowd at a GOP field office, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "I don't want to say anything about your Wisconsin voters but, some of them might not be as sharp as a knife." Day, as the Hill notes, "was born in Texas, and has lived in Florida for decades," so she knows from sharp electorates. The RNC is lucky to have her around at crunch time.

New York Times Travels to Iowa, Finds Advocate of Feudalism

When you interview random people, you come across all sorts of interesting ideas that don’t necessarily get reflected in the national debate. The New York Times has a deep reported story about social and economic change in Iowa, and the interviews with Iowans found a voter who is really not going to vote for Bruce Braley:

Susie Mayou, a 55-year-old conservative, described herself as heartsick that Democrats had carried Iowa in six of the last seven presidential elections. “If Iowa gave power based on land ownership, the state would swing 180 degrees,” she said. “The city people push the agenda.”

The civil-rights agenda really went off the rails sometime around the 18th century when they started taking away political privileges from the large landowners.


Obama Brushes Off Jealous Boyfriend With Cool Banter

President Barack “Mr. Steal Your Girl” Obama was demonstrating the advantages of early voting in Chicago this morning when a man made the ill-advised decision to try and out-charm him. “Mr. President, don’t touch my girlfriend,” the guy joked as he passed the two in adjacent voting booths. At which point Obama turned the charisma up to 11 like it was 2007. “I really wasn’t planning on it,” said the president. “There’s an example of a brother just embarrassing me for no reason, just for no reason whatsoever.”


Video of the day

Charlie Rangel Opens Debate With Fake Phone Call

Congressman Joe Garcia Picks Ear, Eats It on Live TV

Sarah Palin Thinks Chelsea’s Baby May Make Hillary ‘Open Her Eyes’ About Abortion


In The Mag

Back on the Trail

When Mark Sanford decided to run for office again, he asked his ex-wife, Jenny, for her blessing. Whether he has her vote is another matter.

By Jason Zengerle

Reading List

Wonkblog Jan. 21, 2013

The Case for Deficit Optimism

For all the sound and fury, Washington’s actually making real progress on debt.

By Ezra Klein
Salon Jan. 15, 2012

The NRA's Democratic Helpers

Harry Reid and other pro-gun Democrats leave Obama in need of unlikely allies.

By Steve Kornacki

From the Archives

New York Magazine / Nov. 5, 2010

Boehner's Army

After November's glitch, Boehner, McConnell and Congress strike familiar poses.

By John Heilemann
New York Magazine / Jan. 25, 2009

With Friends Like These

Obama drew progressive ire from day one.

By John Heilemann
New York Magazine / Nov. 30, 2008

Hiding In Plain Sight

How one undocumented family lives in our sanctuary city.

By Jeff Coplon