Monday, 21 July 2003

Shades of Bull Connor

Will Baude at Crescat Sententia notes a spat between Ward Connerly and U.S. Rep. John Dingell, apparently prompted by this statement of Dingell’s:

The people of Michigan have a simple message to you: go home and stay there. We do not need you stirring up trouble where none exists. Michiganders do not take kindly to your ignorant meddling in our affairs.

I seem to remember a lot of Southern politicians complaining about the role of “outside agitators” back in the civil rights movement during the 1960s (a fact I wouldn’t have expected to be lost on anyone who wasn’t completely ignorant of Southern history), as Connerly points out rather dramatically in his response.

As for the substance of Dingell’s statement, I wasn’t checking any driver’s licenses but it sure seemed like a sizeable proportion of the Michiganders at Dean’s place Saturday night were planning on supporting Connerly’s initiative drive.

By the way, what is it with all these Latin blog names? There’s a reason the language is dead, you know…

Not-so-sweet sixteen

Daniel Drezner has a challenge to those have criticized his take on the whole “sixteen words” theme that the left has been trying to make fly for the last week:

The power of the critique against Bush would be strengthened if it could be shown that a significant fraction of the American public—as well as the legislative branch—supported action against Iraq only because of the claim that Hussein’s regime had an active nuclear weapons program.

Ok, since I’m likely to be terribly bored at some point in the next day or two, and considering I’m sitting not-very-far from the computers the data is housed on, I’ll look at the February 2003 CBS/New York Times Poll, along with several others from the period after the State of the Union, and see what I can find. I can’t give any evidence on the behavior of legislators, but I can at least examine whether the public’s opinion was conditional on WMD, and nukes in particular—assuming the right questions were asked.

Warning for the faint of heart: I may present regression results in addition to the marginals.