Daily Presidential Update
Recent Swing State Polls:
North Carolina (PPP – Oct. 15) Romney 49, Obama 47
Florida (PPP – Oct. 14) Romney 49, Obama 48
Ohio (PPP – Oct. 13) Obama 51, Romney 46 (Rasmussen – Oct. 11) Obama 48, Romney 47
Virginia (Rasmussen – Oct. 12) Romney 49, Obama 47
New Hampshire (ARG – Oct. 12) Romney 50, Obama 46
Colorado (Denver Post – Oct. 12) Romney 48, Obama 47
HUNTSVILLE TIMES: Gov. Bentley to detail Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program
Gov. Robert Bentley will hold a news conference in Huntsville on Monday to provide details of a proposed Voluntary Retirement Incentive program for eligible state employees.
Pending legislative approval, the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program will be offered to qualified state employees who are eligible for retirement at the time of the plan’s approval.
Monday’s news conference will take place at 2 p.m., in the Mark C. Smith Library at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, 601 Genome Way N.W.
House Speaker Mike Hubbard, R-Auburn, Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R- Anniston, and Rep. Mac McCutcheon, R-Monrovia, are scheduled to attend.
McCutcheon has said he will sponsor legislation outlining the voluntary retirement plan in the 2013 legislative session that begins in February.
Alabama has about 35,000 state employee.
ASSOCIATED PRESS: Ala. Democrat Party’s future hinges on 74-year-old
Democrat Lucy Baxley and Republican Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh, two women who broke the political glass ceiling in Alabama, are battling each other for the second time for Public Service Commission president. However, this time, the outcome could relegate the state Democratic Party to minor party status.
Baxley, 74, is the only Democrat currently holding a statewide office in Alabama. She is one of only two Democrats seeking statewide office in the election Nov. 6. The party fielded no one for the 10 other statewide offices on the ballot.
Cavanaugh, 46, has already ousted a sitting Democrat once. In the 2010 election, she defeated Democratic PSC member Jan Cook, who at the time was the longest-serving Democrat in statewide office. Now, she wants the president’s seat on the three-member board.
Baxley narrowly beat Cavanaugh for the presidency in 2008, but she trails her badly this time in fundraising. Baxley described her fundraising as “pitiful because people won’t give me money.”
MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER: Alabama appeals court rules same-sex partner can’t adopt mate’s child
An appeals court ruled Friday that a Mobile County woman can’t adopt her female partner’s child because of Alabama’s law defining marriage as being between a man and woman.
The Alabama Court of Civil Appeals ruled that Cari Searcy can’t adopt her partner’s child even though the couple was married in California.
Searcy said she and Kimberly McKeand were married after responding to a contest advertised in a San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau publication asking people to write an essay explaining why they wanted to marry in California. They married in September 2008 during the brief period before same-sex marriages were banned in California by a ballot measure, Proposition 8.
The unanimous opinion, written by Presiding Judge Bill Thompson, said one member of the couple cannot adopt the other’s child. The opinion said marriages between same-sex couples are not recognized in Alabama even if they were conducted in another state.
Just in case you missed my Op-Ed piece on our strategy to create new, better paying jobs in Alabama.blog.al.com/birmingham-new…
— Greg Canfield (@gregcanfield) October 14, 2012
BIRMINGHAM NEWS: VIEWPOINTS: Economic development in Alabama is flying high
Alabama is celebrating a series of great announcements this year that continue to prove the state is on the right path to economic prosperity. From the news that Airbus will assemble its A320 family of aircraft in Mobile and employ 1,000 people, invest $600 million and pay its workers an average annual salary of $41,295 to the opening of Phase II of the Alabama Robotics Technology Park, the Alabama Department of Commerce and our economic development partners are determined to continue a focus of building jobs that require technical skills and provide higher base wages to Alabamians.
In North Alabama, the Alabama Robotics Technology Park provides research, development and testing of leading-edge robotics used for military projects, space exploration and industrial applications. The second phase of the RTP provides Alabama companies the opportunity to test applications in nearly every field and improve their competitiveness and productivity.
Biotech is booming in Birmingham and Huntsville, with 150 companies graduating from Innovation Depot. Biomedical breakthroughs have become the norm at Hudson-Alpha Institute for Biotechnology. Researchers from HAIB are engaged in the work to sequence the genomes of approximately 500 patients with ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, over the next two years. The average hourly wage for a biomedical engineer in Alabama is $35.03 and $33.70 for a biological scientist.
These are not the low-paying jobs referenced in a recent Georgetown University study that examined jobs created in the Southern states in previous years. These higher-paying jobs and others like them are the types of jobs we plan to continue recruiting as part of our state’s economic development plan, Accelerate Alabama.
National & International Politics
ASSOCIATED PRESS: Bill Clinton’s back in the campaign game big time
Bill Clinton is back in the game big time, serving as President Barack Obama’s surrogate in chief and relying on his oratorical skill and folksy style to help Democratic candidates.
His high-profile role also gives him the chance to enhance his legacy as Democratic elder statesman and global humanitarian. He can build up political IOUs should his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, decide to run again for president down the road.
Out of office since 2001, Clinton is proving that he retains a strong appeal with voters, especially in conservative states where Democratic candidates aren’t eager to appear with Obama. The ex-president is a leading expert in the art of the political comeback — a skill the struggling Obama could use now.
Also, there’s this uncomfortable truth: Obama needs Clinton to generate support with white, working-class and independent voters who were drawn to Clinton and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, but who haven’t warmed to Obama.
“If there’s one thing we’ve learned in this election season, by the way, it is that a few words from Bill Clinton can do a man a lot of good,” Romney joked in remarks at the Clinton Global Initiative last month, a nod to Clinton’s convention speech.
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes reported Sunday that Arthur Allen, the founder, president, and CEO of ASG Software Solutions, recently emailed his employees asking them to vote for Mitt Romney for the sake of the company– and their jobs. The subject line for the September 30 email was, “Will the US Presidential election directly impact your future jobs at ASG? Please read below.”
Just last week, founder and CEO of Westgate Resorts David Siegel made a similar move, telling employees he’d have “no choice” but to reduce the size of the company if Obama wins.
Allen’s letter read, according to MSNBC:
We have a chance, as individuals, to help turn the sick US economy into a healthy economy, and positively influence the global economy as well. This chance comes on November 6th, when we elect a new President and administration. The US and the world need to elect individuals who have business experience. Neither the world nor the US can stand to elect politicians any longer. In my view, and in the view of most business leaders, if you give politicians 100 questions, they will give you back 100 wrong answers simply because they have no basis for making those decisions. Would you hire a person with no experience to do brain surgery? Of course not, but that’s what the US voters did in 2009. Why does the world keep hiring politicians to run our global economies when they have no experience? It just makes no sense, and yet the world keeps doing it over and over again. Let’s take the lead on November 6th and show the world how it should and can be done.