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Ed Schultz, you're no Glenn Beck: Why "One America" rally just didn't measure up
Salon's War Room ^ | October 3, 2010 | Steve Kornacki, News Editor

Posted on 10/03/2010 2:40:51 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

The hope of the organizers of Saturday's "One America" rally in Washington was that a big turnout -- something on par with the crowd Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin attracted at the end of August -- would alter the media's midterm campaign narrative, which to date has emphasized the energy of the Republican base and the likelihood of sizable GOP gains in November.

And, to the organizers' credit, the turnout, to the extent it could really be measured, seemed impressive enough. But while we might want to take this as proof that the "enthusiasm gap" is vanishing and that the left is suddenly mobilized in a way that will save Democrats in November, the reality is that Saturday's rally was not an election-altering event.

For one thing, the number of people who showed up is pretty much meaningless. Surely, we've learned by now that the size of crowds at political rallies can be, and often is, a woefully misleading indicator of mass opinion. Remember when Ralph Nader was drawing 15,000 paying attendees to his "super-rallies" in 2000? And when he finished with 2.7 percent of the vote?

So the fact that a consortium of 400 or so progressive groups managed to turn out tens of thousands of people doesn't tell us anything significant about November. With the proper planning and resources (and the right weather), they should be able to do this in any political climate. Maybe it would have been news if all of their efforts had yielded an obviously paltry crowd, but whether the exact number of attendees was 75,000 or 175,000, it doesn't really matter. As Ed Schultz, who relentlessly promoted it on his radio and television shows, put it when Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin attracted a giant crowd to the Mall in August: "It ain't a big deal!"

He was right then, and anyone who makes the same claim now about "One America" is equally right. Of course, it's true that the Beck/Palin-fest on August 28 generated far more attention from the press, which regarded it as a cultural/political phenomenon and, in some cases, corroborating evidence for the "Democrats are screwed in November" narrative. So now that the left has produced a sizable crowd of its own, shouldn't "One America" be treated as equally significant?

Again, it's tempting to say yes, but the answer is no. The main reason for the Beck/Palin event's significance was Beck and Palin themselves. The rally was built around two media celebrities who are as odd and frightening as they are compelling. Their success perfectly represents this moment in American history, with severe economic anxiety and the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name prompting millions of conservatives to embrace an unusually intense and urgent brand of paranoia and hysteria.

And the siege mentality that was celebrated on August 28 has clearly played a defining role in American politics this year. The spirit that was on display is the same spirit that has swept Republican electorates in states like Utah, Nevada, Alaska, Colorado, Florida, Delaware, New York, to name a few, where fringe, Tea Party-friendly candidates have won nominations for major office this year. These Tea Party candidates, like Beck and Palin themselves, are tailor-made for this era (at least within the Republican Party). Their emergence may be the biggest story of the year.

Saturday's rally, by contrast, was a tribute to something that is hardly new to America or unique to this moment: the ability of unions and grassroots activist groups to generate a crowd. The closest thing to a Beck figure to take the stage was probably Schultz, whose MSNBC show generates a fraction of the audience of Beck's Fox program. Schultz is an interesting enough guy, but the rhetoric he and the other speakers spouted on Saturday was pretty much boiler-plate union rally rah-rah stuff. In this sense, the more relevant left-of-center extravaganza of 2010 is yet to come: Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity" on October 30. Stewart, as a political force, is a far more of a wild card than any person or group represented on Saturday.

This isn't to say that an event like One America can never be significant. It's just that context is important. Case in point: the union-organized "Solidarity Day" march of 1981. Don't worry if you haven’t heard of it; it's largely been lost to history. But at the time, it served an important symbolic purpose.

The march was called by organized labor leaders who had just seen their own base defect to Ronald Reagan in the 1980 election. And in the early months of Reagan's presidency, he and the GOP seemed to make even more headway with blue-collar "Reagan Democrats": Voters who had never previously identified as such began calling themselves Republicans, and the fear was real that the white working-class -- a pillar of the Democratic coalition for decades -- was switching sides for good.

But the march came as the economy was beginning to slip into a recession, and as Reagan's popularity -- stratospheric when he first took office -- began to drop. The blue collar voters who had provided him his margin the year before were beginning to return to the Democratic fold. Thus, the Solidarity March was a significant event: the men and women who gathered represented a pivotal, election-defining bloc. They'd given Reagan the White House in '80, and they ended up giving the Democrats a banner year in the 1982 midterms.

But that kind of dynamic just doesn't exist right now. It's true that the media has put too much emphasis on the significance of Tea Party rallies and the Beck/Palin event, which reflect only the energy and psychology of the Republican Party base, and not the broader electorate. But it's also true that the Republican base is a whole lot more interesting to watch this year than the Democratic base.

******

Steve Kornacki is Salon's news editor. Reach him by email at SKornacki@salon.com and follow him on Twitter @SteveKornacki


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 0bamas5500000income; 0bamosque; 2010; barachwillnotallow; but78degrees4obama; c0kehead2012; comfortzone; democrats; doper; edschultz; fail; gaybathousecreep; glennbeck; icanseenovember; liberalidiots; marchondc; mask0fzer0; maybealittlebl000000; maybealottabl0000000; only72degrees4you; palin; payczar4usa; rally; salon; sarahpalin; snorterinchief; snowman; spain4only75000day; talkradio; television; unions; victorym0sque; wagya4just100pound
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I hope they never figure it out.
1 posted on 10/03/2010 2:40:55 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

One of the major differences is that the unions didn’t pay for any buses to the Beck rally. The people did that themselves.


2 posted on 10/03/2010 2:45:08 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (I've seen a satellite image proving that Ed Schultz is so fat that he can be seen from outer space.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The only thing this rally showed me is that Ed Schultz need to start using Omar the Tentmaker as a tailor!


3 posted on 10/03/2010 2:46:58 PM PDT by wmileo
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Steve Kornacki? Never heard of him.


4 posted on 10/03/2010 2:48:57 PM PDT by wmileo
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
This poor slob sure hasn't.
5 posted on 10/03/2010 2:49:19 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
...this moment in American history, with severe economic anxiety and the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name prompting millions of conservatives to embrace an unusually intense and urgent brand of paranoia and hysteria.

There's nothing paranoid about a debt that will haunt our great-grandchildren. There is a good deal of hysteria, to be sure, and most of it's on the Left.

It is, moreover, a little difficult to take seriously people such as the author, who pose as the voice of reason and immediately fall back on the "you hate him because he's black! You're all raaaaaaaaaaaacists!" canard. Just another ignorant liberal media punk. See you in November, Sparky.

6 posted on 10/03/2010 2:50:12 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

A promising title, then the usual lies about racism and white insanity.


7 posted on 10/03/2010 2:50:53 PM PDT by jiggyboy (Ten per cent of poll respondents are either lying or insane)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Remember when Queen Peelousi touted the TP movement as being ‘astroturf’ funded by big corporations? Not only is that untrue but the exact opposite is with the Leftist marches funded by Unions courtesy of extorted member dues and diversions of US taxpayer $$ no doubt.


8 posted on 10/03/2010 2:51:33 PM PDT by tflabo
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; maica
The main reason for the Beck/Palin event's significance was Beck and Palin themselves. The rally was built around two media celebrities who are as odd and frightening as they are compelling.

frightening???? ...only to left-wingers who fear that freedom-loving Americans will come to their senses and to the polls in November.

9 posted on 10/03/2010 2:54:09 PM PDT by Freee-dame
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To: Billthedrill

His full name is Barack Hussein Muhammed Obama, Junior. It’s all Moslem except the junior.


10 posted on 10/03/2010 2:54:42 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (Palin/Bolton 2012)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

75,000 to 175,000? I don’t think so Maybe 25,000 to 50,000 that is it tops!


11 posted on 10/03/2010 2:55:26 PM PDT by tallyhoe
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To: FlingWingFlyer

And they bought their own lunches and cleaned up their own trash.


12 posted on 10/03/2010 2:58:31 PM PDT by Ronin (If he were not so gruesomely incompetent and dangerous, Obama would just be silly.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Yeah right Steve. Numbers don’t matter anymore with the attendance to that failure leftist rally compared to Becks. The Tea Party is over emphasized because they have had no effect in shaping the Rupub primaries. Lets all forget Saturday really happened and continue with the canard that the left is energized to save Obummer.


13 posted on 10/03/2010 3:01:13 PM PDT by Lazlo in PA ("Forces of Evil" member in good standing)
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To: tallyhoe

Even Harry Belafonte got the numbers right. In his meandering and platitude riven speech, he said tens of thousands and he was about right - 25,000 is two or three tens of thousands!!


14 posted on 10/03/2010 3:01:38 PM PDT by bjc (Check the data!!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Glenn doesn’t call for war on “The forces of evil” when describing liberals but it is how Special Ed speaks of conservatives.


15 posted on 10/03/2010 3:03:26 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Some of the pictures made it look like tens of hundreds.


16 posted on 10/03/2010 3:06:20 PM PDT by stevem
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
And, to the organizers' credit, the turnout, to the extent it could really be measured, seemed impressive enough.

Yes, and anorexics think their fat, too.

17 posted on 10/03/2010 3:09:23 PM PDT by tbpiper
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To: tbpiper

COMMUNIST RALLY 10/02 12:04 PM


BECK RALLY 8/28 12:00 PM

18 posted on 10/03/2010 3:10:31 PM PDT by plinyelder ("I've noticed that everybody that is for abortion has already been born." -- Ronald Reagan)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I live in southern california. Today was the first time I saw a boxer bumper sticker on any car ANYWHERE. (it was on a prius driven by a late 60s hippie type) I am on the roads every day. As a matter of fact I dont recall seeing any brown bumper stickers.... But I have seen Witman and Carley Stickers for months.


19 posted on 10/03/2010 3:10:51 PM PDT by Walkingfeather
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name prompting millions of conservatives to embrace an unusually intense and urgent brand of paranoia and hysteria.

Boundless drivel. I guess the boys from Salon really favor Obama-Reid-Pelosi policies no matter the damage they do.

20 posted on 10/03/2010 3:11:11 PM PDT by stevem
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To: All
TRASH AMERICA


RESTORE AMERICA


21 posted on 10/03/2010 3:14:26 PM PDT by potlatch
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Don’t worry, they won’t. Witness this balderdash in the article: “with severe economic anxiety and the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name prompting millions of conservatives to embrace an unusually intense and urgent brand of paranoia and hysteria.”

Yup, they don’t get it. And they never will...


22 posted on 10/03/2010 3:14:58 PM PDT by piytar (There is evil. There is no such thing as moderate evil. Never forget.)
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To: FlingWingFlyer
So the fact that a consortium of 400 or so progressive groups managed to turn out tens of thousands of people doesn't tell us anything significant about November.

You said: - The people did that themselves.

Yes. You're right on the point. Yesterday's event was made up of groups that showed up. The Restoring Honor rally was made up of a massive group of individuals who took it upon themselves to make it there. I think it tells alot about November.

23 posted on 10/03/2010 3:17:03 PM PDT by tbpiper
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
"...For one thing, the number of people who showed up is pretty much meaningless...."

Translation: Beck's rally was bigger.

24 posted on 10/03/2010 3:17:32 PM PDT by Anti-Bubba182
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
...the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name...

Barack was the name of Mohammad's magical horse that flew into hell. Obama is Swahili for Osama which was Mohammad's favorite general. His WHOLE name is Mozlem and he changed it by choice from Barry Soetoro.

25 posted on 10/03/2010 3:19:18 PM PDT by Nateman (If liberals are not screaming you are doing it wrong!)
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To: bjc

That’s right! Never thought of it that way!


26 posted on 10/03/2010 3:25:40 PM PDT by tallyhoe
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To: potlatch

A list of presumably religious groups that endorsed yesterday’s marxist rally.

Sojourners

The Shalom Center

General Board of Church and Society- United Methodist Church

Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations

The Religious Institute

The Community Church of NY Unitarian Universalist

Pennsylvania Council of Churches

Pax Christi Metro DC-Baltimore

The New Testement Revival Cathedral

Resurrection Temple of the Lord

Prayer, Praise and Worship Centers of America

National Missionary Baptist Church

National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc.

Lemeul Haynes Congregational Church

Interfaith Worker Justice

Harlem Congregations for Community Improvement

Greater Allen A.M.E. Cathedral

Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago

Church of the Evangelical United Church of Christ

American Muslim Association of North America (AMANA)

Beulah Church of the Nazarene

Bethel Tabernacle AME Church, Brooklyn

Pax Christi USA

Tikkun-Network of Spiritual Progressives

Jewish Funds for Justice

Disciples Justice Action Network


27 posted on 10/03/2010 3:26:34 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: cripplecreek

Quite amazing huh? Every picture I found showed Socialistic signs, NOTHING of ‘faith’.


28 posted on 10/03/2010 3:30:08 PM PDT by potlatch
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The rally didn’t draw a large crowd, but it did leave behind a lot of trash.


29 posted on 10/03/2010 3:35:02 PM PDT by Clintonfatigued (Obama's more worried about Israelis building houses than he is about Islamists building atomic bombs)
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To: potlatch

Good thread on the “religious” left.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2600680/posts


30 posted on 10/03/2010 3:41:17 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
The main reason for the Beck/Palin event's significance was Beck and Palin themselves. The rally was built around two media celebrities who are as odd and frightening as they are compelling. Their success perfectly represents this moment in American history, with severe economic anxiety and the election of a black president with a Muslim middle name prompting millions of conservatives to embrace an unusually intense and urgent brand of paranoia and hysteria.

That race card is really old and tired now. No one believes this cr*pola any more, but the libs don't have anything else to say.

31 posted on 10/03/2010 3:44:15 PM PDT by hsalaw
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The hope of the organizers of Saturday’s “One America” rally——

If you’re gonna put something up shouldn’t it be written about the actual event not a made up one?

It was a One Nation rally not a One America one.


32 posted on 10/03/2010 3:46:26 PM PDT by Freddd (CNN is down to Three Hundred Thousand viewers. But they worked for it.)
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To: potlatch

pic ping


33 posted on 10/03/2010 3:49:45 PM PDT by broken_arrow1 (I regret that I have but one life to give for my country - Nathan Hale "Patriot")
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To: tallyhoe
The rats wanted a massive turnout, to have bragging rights over Beck and Palin. Massive to the extent that the libs could describe having unprecedented numbers...far and away larger than 8/28, blah, blah, blah. Alas for the rats, it was not to be. They're now reduced to saying that the size of the crowd doesn't really even matter anyway. Hahahahaha.
34 posted on 10/03/2010 3:49:45 PM PDT by JPG (Sarah Palin says: "Buck-up or get out of the truck.")
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To: Nateman
"His WHOLE name is Mozlem and he changed it by choice from Barry Soetoro."

I wonder when and where the Alien president changed his name? Where's the paperwork or the court records? Anyone here on this thread have any idea?

35 posted on 10/03/2010 3:52:14 PM PDT by StormEye
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To: cripplecreek

Thank you, I’ll check it out!


36 posted on 10/03/2010 3:52:41 PM PDT by potlatch
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To: broken_arrow1

Lol, thanks!


37 posted on 10/03/2010 3:53:35 PM PDT by potlatch
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

It is amazing anyone would want to attach themselves to that bunch of rabble at that hate rally yesterday.


38 posted on 10/03/2010 3:56:14 PM PDT by dforest
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Regardless of the small turn-out, I still think it was a missed opportunity to deploy up some near expiry-date napalm.


Frowning takes 68 muscles.
Smiling takes 6.
Pulling this trigger takes 2.
I'm lazy.

39 posted on 10/03/2010 3:58:02 PM PDT by The Comedian ("Progressive" is a code word for "Pending nitrogen cycle contributor")
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To: JPG
"The rats wanted a massive turnout, to have bragging rights over Beck and Palin. Massive to the extent that the libs could describe having unprecedented numbers...far and away larger than 8/28, blah, blah, blah. Alas for the rats, it was not to be. They're now reduced to saying that the size of the crowd doesn't really even matter anyway. Hahahahaha."

Even America's lying Democrat Party run media couldn't provide cover for the massive failure of that "event."

40 posted on 10/03/2010 3:58:50 PM PDT by StormEye
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Are these people that dillusional or do they think the people who read/listen to them are? It’s really difficult for me to believe people are that stupid.


41 posted on 10/03/2010 4:01:04 PM PDT by CynicalBear
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To: The Comedian

A strong stream of soapy water would do much the same thing to that crowd.


42 posted on 10/03/2010 4:09:34 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (Palin/Bolton 2012)
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To: The Comedian
I was thinking that there must be a daisy cutter or two lying around in some warehouse........
43 posted on 10/03/2010 4:13:46 PM PDT by JPG (Sarah Palin says: "Buck-up or get out of the truck.")
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To: JPG

Drunk Ed will be calling it a

HUGE SUCCESS


44 posted on 10/03/2010 4:18:30 PM PDT by reefdiver ("Let His day's be few And another takes His office")
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To: wmileo

Steve Kornacki is a former sports writer for Booth Newspapers, his main beat was daily beat writer of the Detroit Tigers. He used to be in my daily paper on a regular basis.

Kornacki did a pretty decent job of being fair and balanced in the article.


45 posted on 10/03/2010 4:19:52 PM PDT by Eric Roelfsema
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To: plinyelder

Interesting that Chris Wallace did not use the 10/2/10 shot from the Washington Monument when he showed a “side-by-side” comparison [his words] of the two rallies today on his show.

Was he trying to fudge reality?

The shot taken from the perspective of the Lincoln Monument stage area was used instead for yesterday’s crowd, and the Washington Monument view for Beck’s rally.


46 posted on 10/03/2010 4:21:59 PM PDT by maica (Freedom consists not in doing what we like,but in having the right to do what we ought. John Paul II)
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To: Freee-dame

Ping to the photos at post #18.


47 posted on 10/03/2010 4:23:50 PM PDT by maica (Freedom consists not in doing what we like,but in having the right to do what we ought. John Paul II)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Oh, boo hoo. Your one ugly nation rally sucked. Admit it.


48 posted on 10/03/2010 4:46:17 PM PDT by taxesareforever (Release Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich and let him and his family get on with their lives.)
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To: plinyelder; reagan_fanatic; a real Sheila; 50mm; Lizavetta; Roscoe Karns; edzo4; Netizen; ...

49 posted on 10/03/2010 5:08:14 PM PDT by Nateman (If liberals are not screaming you are doing it wrong!)
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To: tallyhoe
75,000 to 175,000? I don’t think so Maybe 25,000 to 50,000 that is it tops! -----------------------------------

Hopefully the same numbers will show up for the rats on election day.


50 posted on 10/03/2010 5:18:32 PM PDT by BobP (The piss-stream media - Never to be watched again in my house)
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