Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of September 27, 2012. Give us your feedback below and tune in to Lubbock’s First News with Chad Hasty for these and many more topics from 6-9 am.


1. Battle for Precinct 3 (link)

The battle for Precinct 3 is on and already the race is showing some deep divisions. According to KFYO News:

County Commissioner  candidates Bubba Cedeno and Ysidro Gutierrez were  on hand for the Guadalupe Neighborhood  Association Candidates  Forum. On Lubbock’s First News on KFYO, Gutierrez called in to give his version of what happened.

“Bubba Cedeno got real mad.  I mean he got pissed.  He jumped out of his chair and started rushing toward me, hollering threats, and was physically restrained by the president of the neighborhood association.  He was threatening violence against me.”

Gutierrez said that what started the problems was a dispute over signs that were brought to the forum.

From what has been reported and told to me, both candidates got involved in a war of words which is normally fine with me. If Bubba Sedeno tried to get physical with his opponent, as was alleged yesterday on the show, then he should be ashamed of himself and should drop out. The Democratic Party in Lubbock should also condemn his actions if the events happened as Ysidro Gutierrez claimed on yesterday's show.

2. Polling (link)

Have the national polls been tilted in favor of President Obama? The Weekly Standard thinks so.

I am not in favor of partisan weighting, per se, although some polls like the Rasmussen poll do it in a sensible and nuanced way.  So, I think the pollsters are offering a false choice between weighting and not weighting.

Furthermore, a lack of weighting creates its own problems, which many pollsters often fail to acknowledge. Specifically, many polls have, in my judgment, overestimated the Democrats' standing right now. I base this conclusion not on a secret, black box statistical methodology or some crystal ball, but rather on a read of American electoral history going back to 1972. If I am right, then some of the polls are giving a false sense of the true state of the race, and will likely correct themselves at some point or another.

One important “tell” in my opinion, is this president’s continued weak position with independent voters, who remain the true swing vote.

As of now, I think you can throw the polls out the window. This will come down to the independents and will be a close election.

3. Local Debt Rises (link)

The State Comptroller took aim at the local levels of government on Wednesday. According to the Star-Telegram, local debt has doubled in the past decade.

A new report by Comptroller Susan Combs - who is widely rumored to be considering a run for lieutenant governor in 2014 - is centered on data showing that local debt has doubled in the past decade in Texas at a rate outpacing population growth and inflation. Last year, local debt statewide was nearly $193 billion.

Combs, the state's chief accountant, said she's not making judgments on local projects but believes voters are too often making decisions without enough information. She also denied any political motivations behind the report, which is in line with fiscal conservative and tea party groups that have recently sharpened their sights on local debt.

Combs is calling for ballots in local bond elections to spell out the tax and debt ramifications before voters check yes or no.

"There's not enough transparency at the local levels for the public," Combs said. "They're not at the discussion table."

If people would pay attention to what was in bond issues we wouldn't see the debt we have today. People vote for these things all the time without doing research. However, I think people are getting better about saying no to bond proposals that aren't needed.

4. Free Banking Ending? (link)

Are the days of free checking coming to an end? Because of new government regulations, they might be.

"If free checking accounts were animals, they'd be on the World Wildlife Fund's list of endangered species," says Catherine New at The Huffington Post. This week, industry trade group Bankrate reported that only 39 percent of checking accounts in America are free (meaning they require no minimum balance and don't charge a monthly fee). The free checking account used to be nearly ubiquitous — clocking in at a high of 76 percent in 2009 — but banks have been cutting back their largesse in a bid to squeeze more money out of customers. Here, a guide to the trend:

Why do banks need more revenue?
New government regulations and a struggling economy have eaten into bank profits. President Obama's 2010 overhaul of the financial system, which is meant to protect consumers from bad banking practices, curbed the ability of banks to charge customers overdraft fees. Major banks have tried to offset the losses in numerous ways, most prominently by trying to charge customers for using their debit cards, which was met with a severe public backlash.

Check out the rest of the article at the link above. Good information to have.

Other Top Stories:

These and many more topics coming up on today’s edition of Lubbock’s First News with Chad Hasty. Tune in mornings 6-9am on News/Talk 790 KFYO, streaming online at, and now on your iPhone and Android device with the radioPup App. All guest interviews can be heard online in our podcast section after the show at