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As playoffs close in Sens stars could take a night off
The race to the playoffs is almost over.
Now, the Senators are getting ready for the fun to begin.
That means some players could get the night off Sunday in Boston as the Senators close out the regular season. It’s the game that was postponed because of the bombings at the Boston Marathon on April 15.
Not only will the Senators not have a pre game skate because of an NBA playoff game at the Boston Garden, this is one last chance to give the players a rest as the 48 game schedule played in 99 days comes to a close.
Captain Daniel Alfredsson, winger Milan Michalek and defencemen Sergei Toms Outlet Online Gonchar and Erik Karlsson could all be candidates for a night off. There are plenty of bodies waiting in the wings if the Senators decide to rest some players.
The only change at home Saturday against the Philadelphia Flyers saw Matt Kassian take Guillaume Latendresse’s spot in the lineup.
Sunday’s game could serve as a chance for health Toms Outlet Online y scratches Peter Regin, Jim O’Brien, Mike Lundin and Andre Benoit to see action before the playoffs begin. O’Brien Toms Outlet Online last suited up against the Bruins on April 2nd and Toms Outlet Online finished minus 2.
As Pawlenty knows and Bachmann is learning
Yes, that’s a bit of an obvious statement, but it’s not just true literally, it’s true from a presidential perspective. Voters in the first in the nation ca Toms Outlet Online ucus don’t much resemble those in the first in the nation primary at all, which is why prospective candidates are largely planning to run two simultaneous yet markedly different campaigns in the two states. Some 55 60 percent of voters will participate in the primary, which by state law must be scheduled to be the first presidential primary in the nation.
The biggest campaign event in Iowa last week was a cattle call at a mega church in Waukee sponsored by the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition. Andrew Smith, director of the University of New Hampshire Survey Center, said that, for starters, such a church doesn’t likely exist in New H Toms Outlet Online ampshire. And if it did, an event of that nature wouldn’t be productive.
“Likely Republican primary voters in New Hampshire are more pro choice than the country as a whole,” said. “It’s the second least religious state [behind neighboring Vermont], so social issues just don’t resonate here like they do elsewhere, especially in the Midwest.”
What’s more, he said, targeting most likely primary voters with a social conservative message “will actively turn them off, it’s not just inconsequential.”
That’s not to say there’s not a social conservative strain in the New Hampshire GOP, there is. It’s just far from the dominant view.
Part of that is the state’s makeup. The heart of the GOP here lies in south central New Hampshire, in Nashua, Manchester, Bedford and the like, said Dante Scala, professor at the University of New Hampshire. A large part of the population consists of expatriates from Massachusetts, many driven out of that state in search of cheaper housing and taxes.
“New Hampshire is economically conservative we don’t have a sales tax and we don’t have an income tax,” said Micha Toms Outlet Online el Dupre, a retired Republican strategist who’s now a senior research fellow at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at St. Anselm College in Manchester.
“Independents are the majority in the state,” he said. “What could be interesting in the race are the Democratic leaning independents who can vote in the primary.”
That’s an important calculation in 2012, a year where there’s likely to be nothing interesting on the Democratic ballot, because it means Democratic leaning independents (who might otherwise vote on the Dem ballot) will cast a vote on the GOP side instead.
The blessing and the curse of this being a small state is that it doesn’t take much to advertise on TV. WMUR, based in Manchester, is the dominant station here, with much of the rest made up by bleed over from Boston media. What that means is that, while it doesn’t cost much to achieve media saturation, just about every candidate can afford it.
So voters won’t be going to the polls not knowing who’s in the field. Likely as not, they’ll have met multiple candidates, often more than once.
Granite State voters, like their Hawkeye counterparts, like the personal contact. The joke here, as there, is that if you wait long enough to decide, one of the candidates may come mow your lawn for you. And that means a lot of speeches to small groups, knocking on doors and town hall forums.
“I don’t think anyone can win here unless they do the traditional town halls,” said state GOP Chairman Jack Kimball.
Smith has been polling the 2012 field quarterly almost since the last elect Toms Outlet Online ion ended. Bachmann has not been listed in his polls so far, but Smith said he’s adding her to the next one. Pawlenty has been included since late 2009.
The electorate right now, he said, breaks down as follows: About 50 percent are in what he calls the Romney/Giuliani camp, 20 percent favor “Fox News candidates” like Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum or Sarah Palin. Texas Rep. Ron Paul gets his share, about 5 10 percent, and the rest are up for grabs for someone else.
That having been said, just 7 percent of voters here say they’re definitely sure of who they’ll be voting for. Almost 80 percent are still trying to decide.
Michele Bachmann poses with Joel Sherburne, who has worked at Calef’s Country Store, the iconic Barrington shop, for 53 years.
Looking at the top line numbers from the last poll (through Feb. 15), Pawlenty comes in third with just 7 percent support, well behind frontrunner Mitt Romney, who garners 40 percent support. Pawlenty trails President Obama in a hypothetical race, 44 37.
But look deeper, Smith said, and you see a pattern of emerging support for the former Minnesota governor.
Pawlenty’s unfavorable numbers are basically unchanged from when Smith began polling his name in 2009. And though half the electorate still doesn’t know him well enough to form an opinion, those who have become acquainted with him in the last year and a half have almost all said they like the guy.
Contrast that with, say, Sarah Palin, whose numbers when Pawlenty joined the poll were very favorable. Now, her numbers are so underwater (more unfavorable than favorable) that her potential candidacy is drowning before it begins.
As Oscar Nominated Hollywood Moguls Bag Tax Cuts
Hollywood is abuzz about this year’s Oscar contenders. Django Unchained, Silver Linings Playbook, Lincoln, Argo the nominees feature some of Tinsel Town’s hottest stars.
But when you cozy up on the couch to chomp popcorn and watch your favorite actors and directors receive this year’s Oscars, two words should glow in your mind: welfare recipien Toms Outlet Online ts.
That’s right. Even as the Hollywood glitterati ruminate about social responsibility and the need for the wealthy “one percent” to pay their “fair share,” Hollywood millionaires and moguls are bagging an estimated $1.51 billion in tax revenues annually through something called “film tax credits.”
Consider a few of this year’s Oscar nominated films. According to a new report by the Government Accountability Institute, Quentin Tarantino’s controversial spaghetti Western, Django Unchained, featuring Jamie Foxx and Leonardo DiCaprio has applied to receive an estimated $8.4 million in film tax credits from the State of Louisiana. Actor director Ben Affleck and producer George Clooney’s film, Argo, received $6.21 million in tax credits from the California Film Commission. Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, featuring Daniel Day Lewis, Sally Field, and Tommy Lee Jones, hauled in $3.5 million in tax free film credits. Silver Linings Playbook bagged a cool $5.6 million.
Indeed, 40 states now have some form of subsidy or incentive that allow filmmakers to defray income and/or sales taxes incurred during filming. Thirteen states even offer so called “transferrable film tax credits” that allow filmmakers to convert unused credits into cash at taxpayer expense, of course.
So why are taxpayers giving away over a billion and a half dollars a year in Hollywood welfare handouts, especially at a time when public schools and local governments are slashing budgets and going broke? Hollywood executives and state level politicians claim that film subsidies boost job creation and state tourism.
“What we consider Toms Outlet Online most important about the film tax credit is its long term results, including the jobs created . . . in local businesses,” said president of the Massachusetts Production Coalition Joe Maiella, a group that represents the film industry.
Film tax credit supporters also say that if states don’t offer the Hollywood handouts, other states, or even other countries, will poach the film projects that would otherwise have been shot in their own backyards.
But tax and policy analysts who have studied film tax credit programs say industry claims of job creation are vastly overstated. Worse, say critics, they drain vital state resources from things like education and healthcare.
“The state is using money it then can’t use for other things, like education, transportation and healthcare, which also create jobs and economic growth,” says the liberal think tank Center for Budget Policy and Priorities vice president Nicholas Johnson. “There is no accounting for what else the state could be doing with those dollars to provide economic growth.”
What’s more, the Tax Foundation says “that states lose money by offering tax credits for film production” and that “movie production incentives are costly and fail to live up to their promises” because “they create mostly temporary positions with limited options for upward mobility.”
Another problem with the Hollywood tax credit programs is the potential for state legislators, bureaucrats, and lobbyists to leverage their crony connections to profit at taxpayer expense. In the 13 states that offer transferable film tax credits, a brokerage industry has quietly cropped up that allows unused credits to be sold to unrelated industries. In Toms Outlet Online Florida, for example, former state representative Kevin Ambler previously sponsored a film tax credit bill and is now a manager at two film production companies, one of which applied for film tax subsidies. In Louisiana, a former Film Commission director was busted for accepting bribes to help production firms land more tax credits. And in Connecticut, former Speaker of the House James Amann opened up a film production company and a lobbying firm that boasts he orchestrated “a bold tax incentive plan, and now we can help you Toms Outlet Online navigate it.”
Adding insult to injury is the fact movie ticket prices have jumped 37% over the last decade. If moviegoers are the ones helping foot the bill for film production, the least filmmakers could do it seems is lower ticket prices.
So as you watch your favorite Oscar nominated movie stars and directors strut the red carpet wearing their stylish designer digs this year, take a bow. Your tax dollars helped get them there.