The District 13 race: Local boy vs. machine-backed outsider

On Wednesday, I sat down for lunch with David Jolly. Despite his jeans and untucked button-down shirt, he looks like a congressman. He has a low-key and modest demeanor, but his personal style doesn’t make him a slouch. Although no freshman member of Congress from Pinellas County (or Hillsborough, for that matter) could fill Bill Young’s shoes, Jolly is the most qualified and prepared to hit the ground running.

For her part, Alex Sink, the hand-selected candidate of Democratic Party leaders in Washington, looks good on paper (other than she’s not from the district), but as a campaigner, she’s more awkward than Miley Cyrus teaching an etiquette class. The party bosses must have forgotten Sink’s lackluster personality is why Rick Scott is governor

By Chris Ingram

The Tampa Tribune, January 25, 2014

On Wednesday, I sat down for lunch with David Jolly. Despite his jeans and untucked button-down shirt, he looks like a congressman. He has a low-key and modest demeanor, but his personal style doesn’t make him a slouch. Although no freshman member of Congress from Pinellas County (or Hillsborough, for that matter) could fill Bill Young’s shoes, Jolly is the most qualified and prepared to hit the ground running.

Congress_Race_Florida
Photo: Sink and Jolly. (campaign photos)

For her part, Alex Sink, the hand-selected candidate of Democratic Party leaders in Washington, looks good on paper (other than she’s not from the district), but as a campaigner, she’s more awkward than Miley Cyrus teaching an etiquette class. The party bosses must have forgotten Sink’s lackluster personality is why Rick Scott is governor. What they didn’t forget was Continue reading “The District 13 race: Local boy vs. machine-backed outsider”

The Republicans’ “strategic incompetence”

The Republicans clearly lost the PR battle over the shutdown and the debt ceiling limit extension. Unfortunately for the GOP, the spiraling federal debt as an issue of concern appears lost on most people. It’s significance is quite simple really: The money we’ve borrowed will have to be paid back, and it’s going to be painful.

By Chris Ingram

The Tampa Tribune, October 19, 2013

You might call the Republicans’ recent efforts related to the federal government shutdown and their battle with the Democrats over the debt ceiling as “strategic incompetence.” 

Strategic incompetence is the act of appearing to not know what you are doing, all the while, knowing exactly what you want to accomplish by pretending to be incompetent.

My friend Roy engages in strategic incompetence from time to time. For example, after his wife had their son, Roy decided he didn’t like changing diapers. So he would pretend to be incompetent by fumbling with the diapers, never getting the child clean enough, and otherwise incorrectly changing the diaper and upsetting the baby. In the end, his wife believed Roy was not competent to change the diapers, and she told him he didn’t have to do it anymore — which is exactly what Roy wanted.

By shutting the government down over the train wreck that is known as Obamacare and having threatened to not increase the debt ceiling, the Republicans appeared — just as Roy appeared in the eyes of his lovely wife — to be incompetent in the eyes of voters.

The strategic part of the GOP’s shutdown and debt ceiling plan was Continue reading “The Republicans’ “strategic incompetence””

Irreverent View handicaps the likely GOP presidential candidates

With 2010 elections now well behind us, jockeying for the Republican nomination for president begins in earnest. GOP control of Congress and the White House will largely hinge upon how well Republicans manage their new majority in the House, and how successful they are at conveying to the American public that with the Democrats still in charge of the Senate and 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, their hands are pretty much tied.

Expect a bruising campaign season. And brace yourself. It has already started.

By Chris Ingram

With 2010 elections now well behind us, jockeying for the Republican nomination for president begins in earnest. GOP control of Congress and the White House will largely hinge upon how well Republicans manage their new majority in the House, and how successful they are at conveying to the American public that with the Democrats still in charge of the Senate and 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, their hands are pretty much tied.


Those realities won’t keep a bevy of politicians (and perhaps one or two non-politicians) from entering the race to oust Barack Obama. But a bruising campaign season full of fund raising, list building, town hall meetings, and media interviews will ensue first – long before the GOP crowns its nominee in Tampa in the summer of 2012.

Irreverent View takes a look at the hopefuls

Currently perceived to be “Top Tier” candidates

Sarah Palin – the former Alaska Governor who was selected by John McCain to be his VP nominee for three simple reasons:  she has a nice pair of  Continue reading “Irreverent View handicaps the likely GOP presidential candidates”

The Water Cooler: Mass. Sen. race; Charlie’s latest lie; Rubio’s Tea Party

Anyone with a kid in a Florida public school knows we aren’t 8th in anything. Charlie’s latest bogus claim comes from Education Week, which assessed all states on education standards. And yes, Florida ranked 8th. In short, that means the state of Florida does a good job setting standards on things like accountability and the FCAT — Florida’s statewide assessment test. But bragging about being 8th on education standards is like a NASCAR race team that consistently finishes last in every race bragging about having the fastest pit crew. Last is exactly where Florida remains on the outcomes that matter. We’re 49th in graduation rates and at the bottom fifth in number of students who can read at grade-level (30 percent of our students are not at grade-level). Our SAT scores aren’t much better. Flori-duh public schools rank 44th on the national standardized college entrance exam.

An occasional look at what people are talking about in politics

By Chris Ingram

Republicans will be disappointed

In Massachusetts, Democrats outnumber Republicans by more than 3:1. In the 2008 presidential campaign, Obama bested John McCain by 26 points. Massachusetts is home to large labor unions and one of the most liberal state legislatures in the country.

But if you believe the most recent polls, Republican State Senator Scott Brown is poised to defeat Democrat Attorney General Martha Coakley in the race to fill Ted Kennedy’s seat in the U.S. Senate.

The GOP sees this as a great opportunity to hand Continue reading “The Water Cooler: Mass. Sen. race; Charlie’s latest lie; Rubio’s Tea Party”