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It’s widely accepted wisdom in Washington these days that the Republican brand is tarnished. But what’s striking is the regional variation. In the last fifteen years, although there has been some difference between G.O.P. approval and Democratic approval across the country, the variation has been pretty modest. That’s not the case right now. In the Northeast, Midwest, and West, the Republicans struggle to climb out of the cellar. But in the states of the old Confederacy, the G.O.P. is doing just fine. Here’s a graph by Steve Benen showing the differences based on a September Daily Kos poll.
Does this mean that the party of “no,” now widely associated with tea-baggers, birthers, deathers, and efforts to label Obama simultaneously “fascist” and “socialist,” has scored in the South, while damaging its reputation elsewhere? That’s what at least one statewide poll suggests. The Nashville Post reports on a new poll of Tennesseeans completed by Middle Tennessee State University. It’s a real eye-opener:
I’d bet that these folks don’t spend much time tracking the news, but if they do, no doubt they’re watching Fox. Reading these polls in conjunction suggests that the Republican brand is doing just fine in Dixie, and it’s lined up with some seriously delusional ideas.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — August 5, 2016, 12:08 pm
Sidney Blumenthal on the origins of the Republican Party, the fallout from Clinton’s emails, and his new biography of Abraham Lincoln
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Flor Arely Sánchez had been in bed with a fever and pains throughout her body for three days when a July thunderstorm broke over the mountainside. She got nervous when bolts of light flashed in the sky. Lightning strikes the San Julián region of western El Salvador several times a year, and her neighbors fear storms more than they fear the march of diseases — first dengue, then chikungunya, now Zika. Flor worried about a lot of things, since she was pregnant.
Late in the afternoon, when the pains had somewhat eased, Flor thought she might go to a dammed-up bit of the river near her house to bathe. She is thirty-five and has lived in the same place all her life, where wrinkled hills are planted with corn, beans, and fruit trees. She took a towel and soap and walked out into the rain. Halfway to the river, the pains returned and overcame her. The next thing Flor remembers, she was in a room she didn’t recognize, unable to move. As she soon discovered, she was in a hospital, her ankle cuffed to the bed, and she was being investigated for abortion.
Average duration of a Japanese prime minister’s tenure since August 1993, in months:
Brain shrinkage has no effect on cognition.
An Indianapolis fertility doctor was accused of using his own sperm to artificially inseminate patients, and a Delaware man pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing his former psychiatrist.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”