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Presidency


Ashton Carter Would Become 7th Defense Secretary Without Military Service

Three in 10 defense secretaries never served in the uniformed military including five of the last 13.

Is There a Presidential Drag On Gubernatorial Elections?

Only five of the 20 presidents to serve since 1900 have seen their party win a majority of gubernatorial elections during their administrations, and only one since JFK.

Holder Could Still Reach #3 Attorney General Tenure Mark

If his successor is not confirmed by December 5th, Holder will pass Homer Cummings for third place on the all-time tenure list.

Democratic US Senators Slow Out of the Gate to Respond to Syrian Bombing

Republican U.S. Senators issued press releases on the air strikes within the first 24 hours at more than twice the rate of Democrats and at four times the rate for those who are running for reelection in 2014.

Fringe Candidates Filing for President at 2x Rate of 2012 Cycle

112 Americans are already running for president in 2016 - twice the number as at this stage of the cycle four years ago; Republican filers outnumber Democrats by more than 2:1.

Will Obama Stop Referring to Washington as the "Redskins?"

A monumental trademark decision Wednesday may put pressure on the president to stop using the "disparaging" name as he has in the past.

Will Obama Save Pat Quinn in 2014? Low Drag in Presidents' Home States

Eighty percent of gubernatorial nominees from the sitting president's party have been victorious in his home state over the last century.

Stand By Your President: Record-Breaking Tenures in Obama's Cabinet

Three cabinet secretaries under President Obama have already recorded the longest tenures as heads of their respective departments.

Will 2016 GOP Convention Boost Nominee in Host City's State?

Republican presidential nominees have averaged a 1-point decline in the convention host state's adjusted margin of victory (or loss) vis-à-vis the national vote compared to the previous election cycle since the first televised convention in 1940.

Do Losing Presidential Candidates "Step Aside?"

Mitt Romney told America this weekend that he would not run for president a third time in 2016; was his rationale persuasive?

Presidents' Day Special: Post-Administration Presidential and Veep Longevity

Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale have lived 30 percent longer than any other presidential and vice-presidential pairing since the end of their joint political service nearly 12,100 days.

Obama Backs Holder's Stand to Let Felons Vote

"It is very important for us, if somebody has served their time, for them to be able to participate in their democracy." - Barack Obama, August 15, 2011

Eric Holder at 5: Eying #3 All-Time AG Service Mark in 2014

With Holder currently in fifth place for attorney general service, by December only William Wirt and Janet Reno will have recorded longer tenures in U.S. history.

Obama's America: State References in SOTU Addresses

When searching for episodic examples to bolster his policies in SOTU addresses, the president turns to the battleground states of North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Ohio more than any other.

A State-by-State Historical Snapshot of Michelle Obama's SOTU Guest Lists

Arizona is just the 15th most populous state, but 13 of its residents have been guests of the First Lady during President Obama's first five addresses - highest in the nation.

A Year in Smart Politics

A look back at which political institutions were covered the most at Smart Politics in 2013.

10 Quotes by President Obama about Nelson Mandela

The 44th president quoted or referred to the South African leader an average of once every 88 days in office before his death.

Pollsters Ignoring Rick Perry's 2016 'Campaign'

Only two of 13 GOP 2016 primary polls conducted since April have included the Texas governor's name.

A Brief History of Presidential Red Lines

Prior to Obama, U.S. Presidents have been gun-shy to draw red lines with international relations and the threat of military force at stake (Obama owns 11 of the 13 such references); presidents have more commonly talked about actual red lines...on charts!

Could Scott Brown Win the Presidency?

Brown might be considering a presidential run, but very few presidents since Lincoln lost their last statewide race.



Political Crumbs

Evolving?

When Scott Walker "punted" back in February after being asked if he was comfortable with the idea of evolution he added, "That's a question a politician shouldn't be involved in one way or the other." However, it may very well be a question that is asked at one of the upcoming GOP debates this year. In South Carolina during the first GOP debate in 2012, FOX News' Juan Williams asked Tim Pawlenty, "Do you equate the teaching of creationism with the teaching of evolution as the basis for what should be taught for our nation's schools?" Pawlenty replied, "There should be room in the curriculum for study of intelligent design" but that it was up to the local school districts if it should be in a science class or comparative theory class. At the fourth Republican debate held in California, Jon Huntsman addressed the GOP becoming "anti-science" thusly: "Listen, when you make comments that fly in the face of what 98 out of 100 climate scientists have said, when you call into question the science of evolution, all I'm saying is that, in order for the Republican Party to win, we can't run from science. We can't run from mainstream conservative philosophy."


73 Months and Counting

January's preliminary Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show Minnesota's unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was once again lower than Wisconsin's 5.0 percent. That marks the 73rd consecutive month in which Minnesota has boasted a lower jobless rate than its neighbor to the east dating back to January 2009 including each of the last 67 months by at least one point. The Gopher State has now edged Wisconsin in the employment border battle for 204 of the last 216 months dating back to February 1997. Wisconsin only managed a lower unemployment rate than Minnesota for the 12 months of 2008 during this 18-year span.


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