Bagels and Ballots – Friday

Extremely Extreme: Florida’s 8th congressional district is home to one of the country’s more distinctive contests, as we’ve reported here: liberal Jewish Democrat Alan Grayson vying against conservative Christian Republican Daniel Webster. To Webster’s already solid conservative Christian bona fides — he works to restrict abortion, fought for the state to force-feed Terry Schiavo and homeschooled his own children — Alternet reports that Alan Grayson’s FL Republican Opponent Tied To “Biblical Stoning” Movement, AKA Christian Reconstructionism. The district already seems to be leaning Webster’s way, but maybe now he’ll capture the elusive biblical stoner vote as well.

Boxing Back: Despite the wide interest in Carly Fiorina’s challenge to longtime California Senator Barbara Boxer, polling throughout September consistently showed Boxer ahead. According to Real Clear Politics, though, it’s more a sign that Fiorina’s numbers are falling than that the incumbent is gaining more support.

Seeking A New Villain: Apparently the commentators who see Hitler around every 21st-century corner haven’t heard of Godwin’s Law, a corollary of which is that once a certain person or situation is compared to Hitler and the Nazis, the comparer has lost the debate. Hear that, Newt Gingrich, Glenn Beck & Co.? You may want to remove Der Fuhrer from talk about today’s mosque-building controversies. Or from routine jawboning about election season in the world’s foremost democracy. Or about anything else — unless your intention is to cede the point. In this Sunday’s Washington Post, Dana Milbank has more to say about Beck’s determination to get history completely wrong. (But at least this gives us an opportunity to point you toward Lewis Black on the topic, for some belly laughs on an unfunny subject.)

Who’s In Obama’s Corner? The president’s stalwart fans are psyched to hear him roaring back in his famous — yet almost forgotten — campaign mode. He’s trying to rally the base, close the enthusiasm gap and even fire up some new voters. That comes against the backdrop of a muddy picture of who backs Obama anymore. National Journal said this week that Young People And Minorities Are All The President Has Left. Well, Jews make up 2 to 3% of America’s population, so we’re certainly a minority. But the New York Jewish Week recently asked, Are Jews Becoming Republicans? Here at MitzVote, we’re eager to see, after the Nov. 2 elections, how the tribe ends up casting its ballots.

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