Former Republican congressman Joe Scarborough and former Republican candidate for President Pat Buchanan express their concerns over Sarah Palin being named as John McCain's vice president candidate.
After Buchanan outlines Palin's short resume and her year and a half stint as Governor of Alaska, Scarborough says...
That-that-that will not work.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Former Republican congressman Joe Scarborough and former Republican candidate for President Pat Buchanan express their concerns over Sarah Palin being named as John McCain's vice president candidate.
Labels: Sarah Palin
On August 4th, Sarah Palin released a press release praising Barack Obama's energy plan.
August 4, 2008, Fairbanks, Alaska - Governor Sarah Palin today responded to the energy plan put forward by the presumptive Democratic nominee for President, Illinois Senator Barack Obama.
"I am pleased to see Senator Obama acknowledge the huge potential Alaska's natural gas reserves represent in terms of clean energy and sound jobs," Governor Palin said. "The steps taken by the Alaska State Legislature this past week demonstrate that we are ready, willing and able to supply the energy our nation needs."
In a speech given in Lansing, Michigan, Senator Obama called for the completion of the Alaska natural gas pipeline, stating, "Over the next five years, we should also lease more of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska for oil and gas production. And we should also tap more of our substantial natural gas reserves and work with the Canadian government to finally build the Alaska natural gas pipeline, delivering clean natural gas and creating good jobs in the process."
Governor Palin also acknowledged the Senator's proposal to offer $1,000 rebates to those struggling with the high cost of energy.
"We in Alaska feel that crunch and are taking steps to address it right here at home," Governor Palin said. "This is a tool that must be on the table to buy us time until our long-term energy plans can be put into place. We have already enjoyed the support of Alaska Senator Ted Stevens, and it is gratifying to see Senator Obama get on board."
Saturday, August 30, 2008
John McCain has been running for president longer than Sarah Palin has been Governor.
John McCain formed his exploratory committee to run for president on November 13, 2006.
Sarah Palin was sworn in as Governor of Alaska on December 4, 2006.
How can John McCain and the Republican convention compete with Obama's speech in front 75,000 people at Mile High Stadium and almost 40 million people watching on TV? The differences between the 2 candidates will obvious and vast.
McCain even had trouble filling the 10,000 arena in Dayton, Ohio for his vice president announcement.
Friday, August 29, 2008
After hearing that John McCain has named Alaska Governor Sarah Palin his vice president, I checked out her stances on some issues on On the Issues. Under Foreign Policy it says...
No issue stance yet recorded by OnTheIssues.org.Then I read this on Political Wire...
Just a year and a half ago she was mayor of a town with just over 5,000 people.Talk about dangerously inexperienced.
Iowan and Olympic Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson started the day off by leading the pledge of allegiance.
Bill Richardson outlined how McCain has consistently changed his position on numerous issues and then nailed McCain on wearing $520 pair of Italian loafers, saying...
John McCain may pay hundreds of dollars for his shoes, but we're the ones who will pay for his flip-flops.Al Gore spoke last night and had this great line...
Then a group of everyday people who were Republicans, but are now supporting Obama spoke. One of these people was Barney Smith from Marion, Indiana who summed up the difference between Obama and McCain...
Today, we face essentially the same choice we faced in 2000, though it may be even more obvious now - because John McCain, a man who has earned our respect on many levels, is now openly endorsing the policies of the Bush-Cheney White House and promising to actually continue them, the same policies all over again?Hey, I believe in recycling, but that’s ridiculous.
We need a president who puts the Barney Smiths before the Smith Barneys.I will write more later about Obama's speech, but this article by David Sirota sums up Obama's speech, saying that Obama has made an economic populism the key theme to this election.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Olympic Gold Medalist and Iowan Shawn Johnson will be in Denver on Thursday to lead the Pledge of Allegiance at the Democratic National Convention.
Barack Obama's presidential campaign says Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson will lead the Pledge of Allegiance at the Democratic National Convention on Thursday.
Obama is expected to give his acceptance speech Thursday night at Invesco Field at Mile High stadium in Denver.
The 16-year-old Johnson won four medals at the recent Olympics in Beijing, including a gold in the women's balance beam competition.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Alan Grayson, who ran this great campaign ad in July, won the Democratic primary in Florida's 8th district yesterday. Grayson now faces Republican incumbent Rick Keller, who barely held on against a primary challenge himself.
Grayson has fought against fraud by private contractors throughout the past 15-20 years. He is running for Congress to make sure taxpayer money isn't wasted by private contractors and our troops get the equipment they need to do their job.
Grayson has another outstanding ad about the fraud by private contractors in Iraq...
In Denver, Iowa has received a lot of recognition and praise for standing for Barack Obama "that cold January night", and opening the door to the movement that has swept the nation. Iowa should be proud. Not only of our belief in Barack Obama, but of our state government, activists, and communities.
Every morning we have guest speakers to begin our day. Yesterday we had Governor Chet Culver and Lt. Governor Patty Judge. Wow, these two have done so so much to improve our great state. Culver spoke of the disasters Iowa has endured this summer (They will go down in history to be in the Top 10 worst natural disasters in the US), and also showed the silver lining; that Iowa is "going to rebuild to be a stronger, safer and better state." He stated that Iowans locked arms and used resilience to get through the floods and tornados, and that every single one did their part. (Donate at www.embraceiowa.org. The other night Union Pacific wrote a check for $50,000 to Embrace Iowa.)
We also heard from Mike Gronstal, the Senate Majority Leader, who reminded us of how far Iowa has come with the democratic majority. Since 2006, minimum wage has been raised for 250,000 workers, Iowa has produced 3 million gallons of alchohol for fuel, we have made strides in our civil rights, produced more wind energy per capita than any state in the union, passed children's health care, and went from having our teacher's pay rank 42nd in the nation to 25th.
That's the only reminder we need to remember why we stay democrats in Iowa!
I'm behind on a lot of what's been going on at convention, but the experience overall is hard to describe in words.
Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Amy Klobuchar, Claire McCaskill, Barbara Boxer, Kathleen Sebelius...the list goes on. Women in the United States have some of the best representation we could ask for! These are just a few of the many out there, who are willing to fight for us and for everyone.
Monday night Michelle Obama knocked her speech out of the ballpark, not leaving a dry eye in the audience. She gave ever woman, every child, every family hope for what could be. She proved her faith in the American Dream as well as her faith in Barack Obama to keep renew that dream, and to keep it alive.
Last night, Hillary Clinton gave one of the most moving speeches a democrat could ever hear. Her giving attitude and love for her country shined through every word she had to say, and after her address to the convention, party unity is just around the corner. She really does believe in this party and in this country, and because of this she deserves much praise. We are very fortunate to have her continued representation and impact in the US Senate.
There is no need for any woman in the country to worry about our rights, as long as these ladies are here fighting for us, and as long as we get Barack Obama elected as president of the United States.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
The media was all over last night's convention speeches for not attacking Bush and McCain enough. Tonight, that's is not the case...
Janet Napolitano, Governor of Arizona (YouTube video)...
Kathleen Sebelius, Governor of Kansas...
Barry Goldwater ran for president, and he lost. Mo Udall ran for president, and he lost. Bruce Babbit ran for president, and he lost. For this next election, that's one Arizona political tradition I'd like to see continue.
John McCain's version: There's no place like home...or a home...or a home...or a home...or a home...Sen. Bob Casey, Pennsylvania (YouTube video)...
John McCain calls himself a maverick, but he votes with George Bush more than 90% of the time...that's not a maverick, that's a sidekick.and...
The Bush-McCain Republicans inherited the strongest economy in history and drove it into a ditch. They cut taxes on the wealthiest of us and passed on the pain to the least of us. They ran up the debt, gave huge subsidies to big oil companies, and now they’re asking for four more years.Mark Warner, former Governor of Virginia and Senate candidate...
How about four more months?
People always ask me, "What's your biggest criticism of President Bush?" I'm sure you all have your own. Here's mine: It's not just the policy differences. It's the fact that this president never tapped into our greatest resources - the character and resolve of the American people. He never asked us to step up.and Warner does a great summing up what this election is about...
Think about it: After September 11, if there was a call from the President to get us off foreign oil, to stop funding the very terrorists who had just attacked us, every American would have said, "How can I do my part?" This administration failed to believe in what we can achieve as a nation, when all of us work together.
This election isn't about liberal versus conservative. It's not about left versus right. It's about the future versus the past.Ted Strickland, Governor of Ohio, made a great baseball analogy...
You know, it was once said of the first George Bush that he was born on third base and thought he'd hit a triple. Well, with the 22 million new jobs and the budget surplus Bill Clinton left behind, George W. Bush came into office on third base--and then he stole second. And John McCain cheered him every step of the way.Brian Schweitzer, Governor of Montana, is really hitting McCain hard on being in the pocket of Big Oil and against renewable energy (and having a great time while is at it)...
After eight years of a White House waiting hand and foot on big oil, John McCain offers more of the same. At a time of skyrocketing fuel prices, when American families are struggling to keep their gas tanks full, John McCain voted 25 times against renewable and alternative energy. Against clean biofuels. Against solar power. Against wind energy.
This not only hurts
's energy independence, it could cost American families more than a hundred thousand jobs. At a time when America should be working harder than ever to develop new, clean sources, John McCain wants more of the same and has taken more than a million dollars in campaign donations from the oil and gas industry. Now he wants to give the oil companies another 4 billion dollars in tax breaks. Four billion in tax breaks for big oil? America
That's a lot of change, but it's not the change we need.
Montana, we're investing in wind farms and we're drilling in the Bakken formation, one of the most promising oil fields in . We're pursuing coal gasification with carbon sequestration and we're promoting greater energy efficiency in homes and offices. America
Even leaders in the oil industry know that Senator McCain has it wrong. We simply can't drill our way to energy independence, even if you drilled in all of John McCain's backyards, including the ones he can't even remember.
Hillary Clinton caps off a fantastic night with a fantastic speech that stressed the need to elect Barack Obama. She nailed McCain with this line...
It makes a lot of sense that next week John McCain and George Bush will be together in the Twin Cities, because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart.
Yesterday certainly started with an early morning, and ended with a late late night. But wow, what a day!
It started out with a great Iowa delegation breakfast with several incredible speeches. Scott Brennan started the morning introductions, and passed the mic along to Danny Homan, an active AFSCME member, who spoke on behalf of the Fair Share and Employee Free Choice Acts. The next speaker was the very loved and respected Senator Tom Harkin. He announced that the Library of Congress has certified that he has defeated more sitting republicans than anyone ins US history, and has also been vetoed by Bush more times than anyone else! He talked about the importance of "trickle-up" campaigning--helping the local candidates helps the state candidates which gets the president elected! (I certainly took this to heart after being an IDP canvasser all summer for the local and state candidates!) He then introduced MN Senator Amy Klobuchar who spoke about the importance of party unity.
Senator Klobuchar had much to say about her respect for Tom Harkin, and also had lots of praise for Paul Wellstone. She talked about her immediate admiration for Obama, and his organization and determination in the senate, including the Ethics bill and the Lead Standard acts. She ended her speech by emphaszing the first 6 months of the next administration, where troops need to be supported, healthcare needs to be reformed, and something needs to be done with climate and energy. When those six months happen, we need to be saying "I was a part of that;I changed this country", not "I blew it."
GREAT great way to start a political day!
David Yepsen had a good article (yes, I just wrote that) last week about the future of the Iowa Caucuses.
Those rules fights will continue if Obama loses. Unlike Republicans, Democrats won't decide their 2012 process at their convention. They'll continue to discuss and haggle over it for months. But unlike the last rules fight, Iowa's critics will have more ammunition to make the argument that the state's leadoff position doesn't work for the party, since, once again, it elevated a candidate too liberal or too bad at campaigning to win the general election.You can also bet that the Clintons will be out to torpedo Iowa's caucuses. She would most likely be a candidate again in 2012. After her poor finish in Iowa and other caucus states, the Clintons became critics of caucus processes. You can look for them to side with the anti-Iowa and anti-caucus factions in those rules fights.
While all Americans have a lot at stake in this presidential election, Iowa also has its caucuses at stake.
Labels: Iowa Caucuses
Monday, August 25, 2008
I caught part of Jim Leach's speech at the Democratic National Convention. His speech seemed very scholarly, filled with historical facts and void of talking points.
Andrew Sullivan summarizes Leach's support for Obama...
It's an interesting take on Obama - and it was Jim Leach's basic point. He is not a great speaker, to say the least. But he was the most substantive of the night and the most serious. He is right about one fundamental thing, I think. The ditch this country has gotten itself in - fiscally, militarily and diplomatically - is extremely deep. It will require more than an ordinary politician to get us out of it.
I agree the presidential race between Barack Obama and John McCain is tightening the past few weeks, but it is a far stretch to say the race is tied.
Pollster.com lists 112 polls between the two since Obama captured the Democratic nomination in early June. It breaks down like this:
Obama ahead: 101
McCain ahead: 6
The Convention started Sunday evening in a way that Democrats are quite familiar with: fun.
"Friends of New Orleans" hosted an outrageous, all-out event with tons of live music and a plethora of southern, Cajun foods. The event was held not only as a pre-convention reception, but also to raise awareness of the constant loss of the southern wetlands--almost 100 feet per hour. The ballroom was packed and the party was pumping--it resembled to a T the scene in Swing Vote, when the democrats host a party for Bud Johnson, the man who's vote could give them the victory.
Following the reception there were all sorts of vendors and a couple protesters outside of the convention center, but two in particular caught many peoples' attention: Pro-Lifers. Living in a free country with the freedom of speech and opinion is a wonderful, wonderful thing, and I respect the "Right To Life" opinion whole-heartedly, but the manner in which these gentlemen presented themselves was insane. They stood with a sign showing a picture of Obama, then the words "A vote for Obama is a vote for a dead child." and on the other side of the poster was a gruesome picture of an aborted fetus.
Many people confronted the protesters but were received with sarcasm and cynicism. Even the police appeared to be bothered with how these two were acting. Eventually they got tired of our crowed and moved along to spread their "message" to the other side of the center. It was the first protest I saw here, but I expect there to be several more. I guess it makes it all a little more interesting!
Finally, the evening ended with a reception hosted by Tom and Ruth Harkin at an Irish pub called the "Celtic Tavern." Many Iowan officials and delegates were there, including Governor Chet Culver and Lt. Governor Patty Judge, and Congressman Bruce Braley. It was a fun way to end the evening!
Former Republican Congressman Jim Leach, who endorsed Barack Obama two weeks ago, is going to be speaking on at the Democratic Convention on Monday.
From Radio Iowa...
A source in the Obama campaign says former Iowa Congressman Jim Leach, a Republican from Davenport/Iowa City/Harvard/Princeton, is scheduled to speak Monday night at the Democratic National Convention. For those of you who hadn't heard, back on August 12 Leach endorsed Obama.
The theme of Monday night's convention is "One Nation" and Leach's role as one of the Republicans now backing Obama fits into that theme, according to the source.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Late Friday afternoon, the day the Obama campaign announced their vice president candidate, Bill Richardson sent out an email to supporters to his presidential run.
It was clear at that point, Richardson was not going to be the vice president candidate, even though he touts a long resume when it comes to foreign policy. It was as if Richardson was telling supporters even though he won't be vice president, to not forget about him.
Here is the email...
I know it's been awhile since you've heard from me. But before I head off to the Democratic National Convention, I wanted to share with you some of the exciting things that have been going on.
This weekend I'm flying to Denver with Dave Contarino, Amanda Cooper and several of my senior staff. And on August 28, I'll join with hundreds of Democratic delegates in nominating Barack Obama as our next president.
The whole world will be watching as Democrats come together in one incredible, inspirational moment for our Party and our nation. I'm sure you'll be watching, too.
Then on Wednesday, Barack Obama has asked me deliver a special address on foreign policy and diplomacy. I hope you'll tune in to hear it.
Over the next week, I'll be attending a variety of meetings and events in Denver. I'll share more details with you about those as we firm up my schedule.
In these weeks leading up to the Convention, I've been campaigning around over the country on behalf of Barack Obama. From Illinois to California, Florida to Puerto Rico, we've been raising money and rallying supporters.
In particular, we have been all over New Mexico, building a strong organization so Obama can win the state in November. Just the other morning, I visited three cities before lunch--then came back to Santa Fe for a midday rally.
Last weekend, I joined Senator Hillary Clinton to host an Obama rally in Espanola. Now, Espanola is a town of only about 10,000--and over 1,000 people came out to see us!
Senator Clinton spoke passionately about the need for every Democrat to unite behind Obama, and urged those who worked so hard on her campaign to work just as hard to make him our next president.
Afterward, I held two very successful fundraisers in Santa Fe and Albuquerque to help Senator Clinton retire her campaign debt. It was a great day for the Democratic Party.
The Democratic Party is truly coming together. And the Convention will complete the healing for our Party--and set the stage for taking back the White House in November.
Now I've got just a few things to take care of before I leave. But I promise I'll keep you posted on everything going on in Denver.
I'll write again once we've checked into the hotel.
All the best,
Governor of New Mexico
From the Quad Cities Times...
Barack Obama’s Monday stop in Davenport will be an invitation-only event, his campaign said Friday.This campaign stop is part of Obama's Battleground State Tour. He has other stops in Wisconsin, Missouri, and Montana before heading to the Democratic Convention in Denver.
The Illinois senator is swinging through battleground states on his way to accepting the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination next week at its national convention in Denver.
The campaign is hoping to put Obama in a smaller, more intimate setting, thus the controlled access.
“We want to invite undecided voters from across the political spectrum to discuss how Sen. Obama will bring Democrats, Republicans and independents together to bring the change our country needs,” said Jenni Lee, who is a campaign spokesperson.
Joe Biden will not attending these events.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
I am happy with Joe Biden being picked as Obama's vice president. Biden wasn't my first choice, but was close to the top and a much better choice than Bayh or Kaine would have been.
I will be working on a couple posts about Biden in the next few days. In the meantime, here is a video of Biden speaking at a campaign event in Marshalltown.
Here are the my posts on Biden leading up to the Iowa caucuses...
Biden Can't Wait to Take on Republicans
Biden and Edwards Stand Out at AARP Debate
Biden Stresses the Importance of Iowa and New Hampshire being First
Joe Biden Liveblog in Des Moines
Friday, August 22, 2008
The Obama campaign will be sending out the text announcing their vice president pick on Saturday morning.
All signs looking like Biden.
Noam Scheiber makes a great point...
You can let the suspense build and build if you've got a Hillary or a Gore socked away somewhere. Possibly a Biden or a Webb (or some unorthodox pick like a general or a Republican). But you'd better not come with Jack Reed or Evan Bayh after toying with people for over a week.
Barack Obama is supposed to announce his VP candidate this evening or tomorrow morning by text message to supporters. There will be an event in Springfield, Illinois tomorrow afternoon with Obama and the Vice President candidate.
I am predicting that the choice will be Joe Biden. Biden is known to talk a lot and, except for a comment midweek that he's not the guy, he has been pretty quiet the past couple weeks. Biden is coming off a trip to Georgia where he talked to leaders in the region about the conflict with Russia. Biden best quality in my opinion is that he isn't afraid to throw elbows and go on the attack.
Bayh and Kaine's names have been put out there before Obama made campaign stops in their respective states and the buzz wasn't always positive. I think that was basically a test run and the campaign has decided against those two. Another reason that going against Kaine is that Obama just spent two days campaigning in Virginia, a key battleground state, so it wouldn't make sense to announce your naming the Governor of Virginia VP at an event in another state.
I wouldn't be surprised if Hillary Clinton gets the nod. This diary at Open Left makes the case that Obama will name Hillary Clinton that makes a lot of sense.
If, in June, Clinton told you she should be your VP and you were seriously considering it, what would you do? You would probably tell her that the only way it could happen is if you wholeheartedly endorse me, make it clear you have gotten over the joint ticket idea, have those under your influence (such as the "Vote Both" folks) drop all of their efforts on HRC's behalf. You'd say, I can't look weak by picking you, like I was forced by circumstance. It must look like a choice I made that I didn't have to make but I did because I'm such a big person and I care about the country and I care about victory.There are three candidates that I would most like to see be named vice president. I would love for Obama to name Kathleen Sebelius, who was campaigning in Iowa yesterday, is still a choice, but there hasn't been much buzz about her lately. And Tom Harkin is pushing for Chris Dodd, which I think would be a great choice. Finally, I have been a little surprised that Bill Richardson hasn't been mentioned as much. I think he would bring a lot to the table.
Then it could be a complete dark horse candidate like Tom Daschle, John Kerry, Mark Warner, or Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer (one of the battleground states Obama is visiting after the announcement is Montana).
Now it's just time to sit back with my cell phone in hand and wait for the announcement.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
That should be an easy question for most people, but not for John McCain.
Barack Obama already has an ad out on this subject...
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in an interview Wednesday that he was uncertain how many houses he and his wife, Cindy, own.
"I think — I'll have my staff get to you," McCain told Politico in Las Cruces, N.M. "It's condominiums where — I'll have them get to you."
and Obama spoke about it at a campaign stop in Virginia...
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Alaska has been inundated with scandals with Sen. Ted Stevens getting indicted, Rep. Don Young being under federal investigation for possibly taking bribes, and Gov. Sarah Palin facing a state probe. "This is the most important ballot initiative, the most important people's initiative that we've had since statehood. If we get this right, we get our state back," said Tim June of Alaskans for Clean Elections. The idea is to offer candidates money from the state to finance their entire campaign. To qualify, candidates would have to get a certain amount of $5donations and signatures from voters in their district. Once that happens candidates would have to agree to give up any private donations as well as forego out-of-pocket cash expenditures. "Instead of making a winner determined by who has the most money, Clean Elections levels the playing field by offering candidates an equal amount of funding to whoever they're running against," said June. The measure hopes to limit the power of special interest groups. "We have always been under pressure from very large multinational corporate interests, industry interest that are constantly trying to change Legislation," said June. Alaska would be the eighth state in the country to provide public funding to state candidates." There is a similar bill in Iowa that would limit the power of special interest groups called Voter Owned Iowa Clean Elections or VOICE. Like the measure in Alaska, the VOICE bill would require candidates to get $5 donations along with their signatures to qualify. All of this money would go into a fund that would be used by candidates that have met the requirements to earn public money. The rest of the money would come from unclaimed property and a check off on your state income taxes. Under the VOICE bill no taxpayer money would be used unless you want to mark the check off on your state income taxes. Overall, the system would cost around $10 million or less than 1/10 of 1% of the state's annual budget.
This fall Alaskans will have a chance to take their state back from corruption and vote on a ballot measure that would adopt clean elections in statewide races.
"This is the most important ballot initiative, the most important people's initiative that we've had since statehood. If we get this right, we get our state back," said Tim June of Alaskans for Clean Elections.
The idea is to offer candidates money from the state to finance their entire campaign.
To qualify, candidates would have to get a certain amount of $5donations and signatures from voters in their district. Once that happens candidates would have to agree to give up any private donations as well as forego out-of-pocket cash expenditures.
"Instead of making a winner determined by who has the most money, Clean Elections levels the playing field by offering candidates an equal amount of funding to whoever they're running against," said June.
The measure hopes to limit the power of special interest groups.
"We have always been under pressure from very large multinational corporate interests, industry interest that are constantly trying to change Legislation," said June.
Alaska would be the eighth state in the country to provide public funding to state candidates."
There is a similar bill in Iowa that would limit the power of special interest groups called Voter Owned Iowa Clean Elections or VOICE. Like the measure in Alaska, the VOICE bill would require candidates to get $5 donations along with their signatures to qualify. All of this money would go into a fund that would be used by candidates that have met the requirements to earn public money. The rest of the money would come from unclaimed property and a check off on your state income taxes.
Under the VOICE bill no taxpayer money would be used unless you want to mark the check off on your state income taxes. Overall, the system would cost around $10 million or less than 1/10 of 1% of the state's annual budget.
Oil and Gas companies are madly spending to influence public opinion...
Public Campaign Action Fund, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving America's campaign finance laws, released a new analysis finding that the oil and coal industries spent $427.2 million so far this year of the year to shift public opinion and to capture the eyes, ears, and support of Congress on critical energy issues.They looked at political contributions, lobbying expenditures, paid advertising, and other political spending to come up with their total.
A total of $37.4 million were given in political contributions. $129 million was spent lobbying Congress and the White House. $208.6 million was spend on paid advertising.
All of this money was spent from January 2008 to June 2008.
Labels: Campaign Finance
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Brave New Films released this video about John McCain's mansions, private jets, and $520 penny loafers.
Top quote goes to Cindy McCain...
"My husband was running for the Senate in Arizona," she said. "And in Arizona the only way to get around the state is by small private plane and I wound up loving it and buying a plane."Now raise your hand if you can afford to just go out and buy a private plane.
A Texas school district is going to allow teachers to carry concealed weapons in the classroom in an effort to protect against school shootings.
A tiny Texas district will allow teachers and staff members to carry concealed firearms to deter and protect against school shootings when classes begin this month, provided the gun-toting employees follow certain requirements.To be able to carry a handgun in the school, the teacher would need extra training...
The small community of Harrold in north Texas is a 30-minute drive from the Wilbarger County Sheriff's Office, leaving students and teachers without protection, said David Thweatt, superintendent of the Harrold Independent School District. The lone campus of the 110-student district sits near a heavily traveled highway, which could make it a target, he argued.
For employees to carry a pistol, they must have a Texas license to carry a concealed handgun; must be authorized to carry by the district; must receive training in crisis management and hostile situations; and must ammunition designed to minimize the risk of ricocheting bullets.I see their point about being far away from law enforcement, but I think hiring a police officer for the community would be a better idea than putting guns in the classroom.
Fortunately, the Daily Show looked at this issue last year with hilarious results...
Monday, August 18, 2008
It may be that to someone worth $100 million, who owns 10 houses, who flies around in a $12.6 million corporate jet, and who walks around in $520 Italian loafers, $5 million a year in income is the cutoff for the wealthy -- that those making $500,000 a year, or $1 million a year, or even $4 million a year are not "rich" -- but to most American people that's just an absurd statement. Indeed, not only is it absurd to say even jokingly (and it's not clear what the joke would be, or if it really was intended to be a joke, despite what the McCain spinmeisters say) that the cutoff point for being rich is $5 million per year, it's almost unfathomable that anyone could believe that to be the case.
Vote Vets ran this ad against in 2006 against George Allen, Conrad Burns, and Rick Santorum for voting against supplying the proper body armor to our troops serving in Iraq.
In the House, Tom Latham also voted against supplying the proper body armor to our troops serving in Iraq.
Becky Greenwald is running against Tom Latham and has been endorsed by General Wesley Clark.
“I’m endorsing Becky for Congress because her experience with the American Red Cross assisting wounded veterans returning home from the Vietnam War has shaped her strong commitment to our nation’s veterans,” said General Wesley Clark.Allen, Burns, and Santorum all lost in 2006. Latham will be running in 2008 and say that he supports the troops, but we all know better. All you have to do is look at his voting history against our troops.
Tom Latham has voted to cut billions from Veterans programs in order to fund tax cuts for the wealthy. (HCR 95, Vote #78, 3/20/03)
“George Bush and Tom Latham have for too long cut funding for our troops returning from Iraq, and we need Becky in Congress to be a voice for our soldiers,” said General Clark.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Last week, I attended a fundraiser for Steve Sodders with Sen. Tom Harkin. It was a well attended event for being on Monday morning at 8 am.
Sen. Harkin stressed how important it is to elect good people to the statehouse and highlighted all of Steve's great work in the community. Sodders is a deputy sheriff in Marshall County, is on the Red Cross board, serves on the Youth and Shelter Services board, and coaches middle school wrestling.
Then Harkin went on to discuss rising energy costs. Harkin cited increased production of cellulosic ethanol in the 2008 Farm Bill and discussed the potential of renewable energy. One example heused was making ethanol out of algae. He also mentioned how we can't drill our way out of this problem.
I have been to a couple of events for Steve Sodders. This was one of the first ones he gave real campaign speech at and I think everyone left impressed. I got the whole speech on video, but the sound didn't come out. Since I was taping the speech, I missed a lot of the details, but here is the gist of the speech.
Sodders told a story of him growing up. There was an elderly lady that lived down the block and he and his brothers would mow her yard and help with yard work. When they'd finish, the lady would get her checkbook out and ask them how much they were worth that day. Steve then made the connection to present day Iowa, saying that he believes Iowans are worth a quality education, health care, and a state where young people want to stay in after graduation. To keep young people in the state, it requires good paying jobs. Sodders said we have a great opportunity to create good paying jobs through the research and development of renewable energy in the State.
Sodders is running for the State Senate in District 22 that covers Marshall and Hardin Counties. The seat was formerly held by Republican Larry McKibben who has retired. Sodders is facing Republican Jarret Heil. Democrats consider this seat to be one of their top chances to pick up a seat in the Iowa Senate this year.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
- Pre-tax income less than $10k: Obama tax cut is $487, McCain's is $14.
- Pre-tax income $10-20k: Obama tax cut is $709, McCain's is $26.
- Pre-tax income $20-30k: Obama tax cut is $896, McCain's is $89.
- Pre-tax income $30-40k: Obama tax cut is $1,039, McCain's is $178.
- Pre-tax income $40-50k: Obama tax cut is $1,124, McCain's is $232.
- Pre-tax income $50-75k: Obama tax cut is $952, McCain's is $336.
- Pre-tax income $75-100k: Obama tax cut is $779, McCain's is $483.
- Pre-tax income $100-200k: Obama tax cut is $407, McCain's is $847.
- Pre-tax $200-500k: Obama raises taxes $3,546, McCain cuts $1,892.
- Pre-tax $500-1mil: Obama raises taxes $30,499, McCain cuts $6,825.
- Pre-tax $1mil+: Obama raises taxes $262,371, McCain cuts $58,632.
Friday, August 15, 2008
From Andrew Sullivan...
The authors of the Left Behind series say Obama isn't the Anti-Christ.
"I've gotten a lot of questions the last few weeks asking if Obama is the antichrist," says novelist Jenkins. "I tell everyone that I don't think the antichrist will come out of politics, especially American politics."
"I can see by the language he uses why people think he could be the antichrist," adds LaHaye, "but from my reading of scripture, he doesn't meet the criteria. There is no indication in the Bible that the antichrist will be an American."
Good thing that's settled.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
I was out driving around town tonight when the weather suddenly changed and I saw a funnel cloud.
This picture is from the intersection of Highway 14 and Highway 30 in Marshalltown.
On the way home I got this picture of the clouds over the Marshall County Courthouse.
Our troops stationed overseas support Obama over McCain.
From Political Wire...
According to an analysis of campaign contributions by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, Sen. Barack Obama has received nearly six times as much money from troops deployed overseas at the time of their contributions than has Sen. John McCain.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Freakonomics asks 8 experts their opinion on what suburbs will look like in 40 years.
Given the economic changes of the past several months, particularly those in the housing market and in energy prices, it seemed like a good idea to run a new quorum on suburbia, even if it might cover some of the same ground. (Indeed, we even invited two participants from the first quorum to respond to this one as well.) So we gathered up a group of smart people — James Kunstler, Thomas Antus, Jan Brueckner, Gary Gates, John Archer, Alan Berube, and Lawrence Levy — and asked them the following:
What will U.S. suburbs look like in 40 years?
Their answers are informative and often fascinating. As always, Kunstler is vastly entertaining as he advocates what one critic calls “apocalyptic utopianism,” while Antus gets a bit Swiftian on us. Brueckner and Archer are far more measured (and, if I had to lay money on the future, closer to reality), although Archer borders on his own utopianism. Gates takes a surprising and compelling angle, Levy is brutally realistic, and Berube is prescriptive in a way that I wish political candidates could learn to be. I hope you enjoy their replies, and learn from them, as much as I have.
John Edwards was going to be the keynote speaker at a poverty conference held by Mari Culver. The event was scheduled for June 19th, but was postponed due to the flooding and was to be rescheduled.
Charlotte Eby is reporting that John Edwards has cancelled that appearance.
Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, who admitted last week to an extramarital affair with a videographer chronicling his campaign, has cancelled a scheduled appearance in Iowa next month.
Edwards had been slated to appear as the keynote speaker for Iowa First Lady Mari Culver’s Conference on Solutions to Poverty.
Troy Price, spokesman for Iowa Gov. Chet Culver, said they received word today about Edwards’ cancellation and are working to secure a new keynote speaker for the event.
Labels: John Edwards
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Radio Iowa is reporting that Jim Leach will be endorsing Barack Obama today.
According to a source in the Obama campaign, former Iowa Congressman Jim Leach -- a Republican -- will be endorsing Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama this morning. Leach, as you may recall, lost his bid for re-election in 2006 after three decades representing portions of eastern Iowa in congress. Leach was considered a "moderate" Republican and was a backer of campaign finance reform. Leach did not accept campaign contributions from political action committees.
Think your taxes are high? That is because many corporations are skipping out on paying income taxes that they owe.
The Government Accountability Office is set to release a report that says most U.S. corporations pay no federal income taxes.Corporations are heavy users of our nation's infrastructure. Semi trucks clog our interstate highway systems. Companies use telephone and broadband lines to do business. Many of our courts are filled with cases brought by corporations. When corporations don't pay for this infrastructure, you and I are forced to pick up the tab. It is time that corporations become responsible citizens and pay their taxes like the rest of us do.
And most foreign companies that do business in the United States aren't paying corporate taxes.
The study says about two-thirds of American corporations paid zero income taxes to Uncle Sam between 1998 and 2005.
An even higher percentage of foreign corporations avoided federal corporate taxes. At the same time, said the GAO, the firms had trillions of dollars in sales.
The study was requested by Democratic Sens. Carl Levin of Michigan and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota.
"It's shameful that so many corporations make big profits and pay nothing to support our country," Dorgan said.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Andrew Sullivan takes a look at how Obama's message of change this election is similar to Reagan's message (though their policies are vastly different) back in 1980.
Sullivan goes on to outline how America has declined during the Bush administration and concludes with this great line...
It seems to me that if "optimism" means always saying that America has never fallen or failed, then Ronald Reagan was an inveterate pessimist. His campaign in 1980 was premised on the notion that America had objectively declined as a nation under the hapless presidency of Carter. His optimism was about how to improve that. How, after all, could it have been "morning in America" if it had never been night?
Obama's position is exactly Reagan's in this respect.
To vote for the party that gave us the past eight years is not optimism. It's clinical denial.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Another group opposes building more coal-fired power plants.
The League of Women Voters today called for a moratorium on new construction of coal-fired electric power plants.
“Global warming is happening now,” said national League President Mary G. Wilson. “If we wait for federal action from our congressional leaders, it will be too late. We must take immediate and aggressive action to halt climate change,” she said. (Click here for a fact sheet on the League’s stand.)
“Burning more coal is too big a risk for too many people,”
said. “Coal is the single largest source of global warming pollution in the Wilson , with power plants responsible for 33 percent of CO2 emissions. Because of this pollution, we already face increasingly severe heat waves and droughts, intensifying hurricanes and floods, disappearing glaciers and more wildfires. If left unchecked, the effects will be catastrophic to us and our planet,” she said. U.S.
“We will be active in opposing the building of these plants,” said
. “Coal-fired electric power plants have a very long lifespan and contribute huge amounts of pollution to the atmosphere. Building these new plants would foreclose the possibility of preventing dangerous global warming.” Wilson
“Today, there is no environmentally sound use of coal,”
said. “Many hope that CO2 can be captured and stored underground,” she observed, “but this technology has never been demonstrated on a commercial scale.” Wilson
“Instead of coal, we must look to clean energy alternatives,” according to
. “ Wilson , which has been a leader in energy conservation and efficiency, has been able to keep per capita energy consumption essentially constant for three decades while enjoying a growing economy,” she noted. “Wind and solar are also ready to make large contributions to economic growth,” she said. California
The League carefully examined many facets of energy policy before taking its stand (click here for the League’s FAQ). “We support strong action in Congress to stop global climate change, but the planet can’t wait,”
In Iowa there are two proposed coal-fired power plants in Marshalltown and Waterloo.
Friday, August 08, 2008
Cenk Uyger from the Young Turks asks how John Edward's affair is different than John McCain's?
Here's more on John McCain's affair while his wife was recovering from a terrible auto accident.
Now, we get to the most relevant question - if John Edwards' political career is done, why isn't John McCain's? John McCain had a well-documented affair on his first wife, with his current wife. He has admitted in the books he has written about his life that he ran around with several different women while still married to his first wife. And don't forget that he left her for a younger, richer woman - multi-millionaire Cindy Hensley who is now Cindy McCain - after she had been severely hurt in a car accident.
So, why are McCain's actions any more excusable than Edwards'? Because it was thirty years ago? Does that wash it away? Will we be fine with Edwards running for office again in a couple of years because then it will all be in the past? What is the statute of limitations on an affair?
Remember Ronald Reagan, Nancy Reagan and Ross Perot were so upset with how John McCain dealt with his first wife that they didn't forgive him for a very, very long time. Perot still hasn't forgiven him. In fact, he said recently about McCain dumping his first wife for Cindy, "McCain is the classic opportunist. He's always reaching for attention and glory."
So, I want every pundit who condemns John Edwards today to tell me what the difference between him and McCain is and why John McCain shouldn't also be run out of politics for his adulterous affairs and what he did to his first wife.
But when McCain returned to America in 1973 to a fanfare of publicity and a handshake from Richard Nixon, he discovered his wife had been disfigured in a terrible car crash three years earlier. Her car had skidded on icy roads into a telegraph pole on Christmas Eve, 1969. Her pelvis and one arm were shattered by the impact and she suffered massive internal injuries.
When Carol was discharged from hospital after six months of life-saving surgery, the prognosis was bleak. In order to save her legs, surgeons
had been forced to cut away huge sections of shattered bone, taking with it her tall, willowy figure. She was confined to a wheelchair and was forced to use a catheter.
Through sheer hard work, Carol learned to walk again. But when John McCain came home from Vietnam, she had gained a lot of weight and bore little resemblance to her old self.
Also you can't forget Newt Gingrich ditching his wife while she was in the hospital being treated for cancer.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
From Matthew Yglesias...
In a new Brookings paper, Melissa S. Kearney and Phillip B. Levine reach the startling conclusion that when you increase the number of teenagers eligible to receive family planning services through Medicaid you get fewer teen pregnancies. Imagine that! It seems worth mocking but, honestly, the absurd thing isn't so much the research as that the relevant policies aren't already in place. For the record: "The authors estimate the policy cost of preventing an unwanted birth to be around $6,800. They conclude that this is a cost-effective policy intervention relative to other policies and programs targeted at reducing teen and unwanted births."
Labels: Birth Control
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
Barack Obama was in Indiana overnight and has a speech on energy policy today.
Officially, Barack Obama will deliver an energy-policy speech Wednesday to citizens in Elkhart, Ind. But the focus of the political chattering class will be on the man sitting shotgun at the event: Evan Bayh, the Indiana senator thought to be on the likely Democratic presidential nominee's short list of vice-presidential candidatesRumors over the weekend are that Obama will be naming Bayh his vice president on this trip. Adding fuel to the fire, ObamaBayh08.com directs you to the DNC website.
Bayh, of course, is denying all the VP talk.
Of all the candidates that have been mentioned as possible vice president candidates, Bayh is probably the least appealing. He voted for the war and was a past president of the DLC. I admit that Bayh would be a safe pick. He probably puts Indiana in play and brings some foreign policy experience.
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
One of the names that is getting thrown out there as possible vice president nominees is Virginia Governor Tim Kaine. I am not sold on Kaine. He would probably push Virginia into the blue column, but Kaine is probably the 3 choice of possible VP candidates in his own state behind Mark Warner and Jim Webb.
From Open Left...
One of the best local blogospheres in the country - Virginia's - emerged in 2005 out of the draft Clark campaign. Lowell Feld started the site Raising Kaine to support Tim Kaine for Governor, since Kaine was seen as a successor to Mark Warner, a Democrat who had governed effectively and progressively in the state. Kaine eventually won the race, and then the Virginia netroots and Feld went on to help Jim Webb defeat George Allen. This group has been part of turning that entire state blue, and they are quite tolerant of conservative Democrats.Tim Kaine spoke at the Texas Democratic Convention, which was covered by a blogger from the Burnt Orange Report...
So it's worth noting that the blog refers to itself as RK at this point, and has firmly turned against Kaine.Three years into the Kaine Administration, Virginia Progressives stand aghast at what it has become. From his repeal of the estate tax to his abandoned plan for universal Pre-K, to his opposition to embryonic stem cells, from his failed transportation plans to cozy relationship to Dominion Power and his reprehensible support of the Wise Coal Plant, the Kaine administration has fulfilled our every early fear and never failed to disappoint progressive Virginia.Not only has Kaine caved to the business right by promoting coal against the opposition of environmentalists and cutting taxes on the superwealthy, but the state is paralyzed by hyper-partisanship.
Obama could do far worse than Tim Kaine, but there is a lot left to be desired policy wise.
Remember -- I started watching this video not liking Kaine. I already didn't like him because he (and his staff) were surprisingly and unnecessarily pushy backstage at the TDP convention (where I was volunteering). After reading about his policies, I liked him even less. Suffice to say, I'm really, really unexcited about any prospects of him as Vice President.
But if the only measuring stick is, "how good of a stump candidate for Vice President" would Kaine be, I'd have to say excellent. He can speak in Spanish, delivers red-meat to the base without becoming too partisan or overshadowing Obama, and can honestly tell a real-life story of flipping conservative states red-to-blue.He's one of the worst choices for anyone who cares about policy, but is a damn good choice for anyone who only cares about politics.
One of my top choices for Obama's vice president is General Wesley Clark. Clark was against the war, brings foreign policy credentials, is a Washington outsider, was a Clinton supporter, and is strong on progressive issues.
Last week Matt Stoller of Open Left started an Obama/Clark website.
The political argument for Clark is simple. He is a great surrogate for Democrats, with experience in 2004 and 2006 on the campaign trail, and a genuine national base of supporters. In terms of governance, which is what Obama says is the most important criteria for his VP pick, Clark can help Obama deal with the mess that the Bush administration left behind. As commander of NATO in the late 1990s, Clark won a war, so he is more likely than any progressive out there to be able to wrangle solutions from a military establishment that has been decimated by Bush's cronyism and incompetence. That is really important moving forward, since rebuilding our national security posture is a critical challenge over the next eight yearsClark also emphasizes Obama's strengths. He is popular among grassroots progressives, he was against the war in Iraq from the get-go, and he is an outsider to politics.
Monday, August 04, 2008
Glenn Greenwald makes the important point that the anthrax attacks that happened after 9/11 were from a domestic source and not linked to Islamic extremists.
Greenwald goes on to talk about how the attacker wanted to create a link between the anthrax and Islamic extremists and specifically Iraq and how the media picked it up and ran with it.
The 2001 anthrax attacks remain one of the great mysteries of the post-9/11 era. After 9/11 itself, the anthrax attacks were probably the most consequential event of the Bush presidency. One could make a persuasive case that they were actually more consequential. The 9/11 attacks were obviously traumatic for the country, but in the absence of the anthrax attacks, 9/11 could easily have been perceived as a single, isolated event. It was really the anthrax letters -- with the first one sent on September 18, just one week after 9/11 -- that severely ratcheted up the fear levels and created the climate that would dominate in this country for the next several years after. It was anthrax -- sent directly into the heart of the country's elite political and media institutions, to then-Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD), Sen. Pat Leahy (D-Vt), NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw, and other leading media outlets -- that created the impression that social order itself was genuinely threatened by Islamic radicalism.If the now-deceased Ivins really was the culprit behind the attacks, then that means that the anthrax came from a U.S. Government lab, sent by a top U.S. Army scientist at Ft. Detrick. Without resort to any speculation or inferences at all, it is hard to overstate the significance of that fact.
During the last week of October, 2001, ABC News, led by Brian Ross, continuously trumpeted the claim as their top news story that government tests conducted on the anthrax -- tests conducted at Ft. Detrick -- revealed that the anthrax sent to Daschele contained the chemical additive known as bentonite. ABC News, including Peter Jennings, repeatedly claimed that the presence of bentonite in the anthrax was compelling evidence that Iraq was responsible for the attacks, since -- as ABC variously claimed -- bentonite "is a trademark of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's biological weapons program" and "only one country, Iraq, has used bentonite to produce biological weapons."
ABC News' claim -- which they said came at first from "three well-placed but separate sources," followed by "four well-placed and separate sources" -- was completely false from the beginning. There never was any bentonite detected in the anthrax (a fact ABC News acknowledged for the first time in 2007 only as a result of my badgering them about this issue). It's critical to note that it isn't the case that preliminary tests really did detect bentonite and then subsequent tests found there was none. No tests ever found or even suggested the presence of bentonite. The claim was just concocted from the start. It just never happened.
Sunday, August 03, 2008
We bought to a new house last November. We got moved in right before the ice and million inches of snow last winter. That meant the entire outside was unexplored (except for the time spent shoveling the driveway).
After waiting to see what came up in the spring and finishing the school year, it was time to put in a garden. We decided to plant it in an area where the previous owner parked their camper that was covered in mulch. Even if we weren't able to grow anything, it would have to be an improvement over the 20 foot long strip of mulch. Plus, we thought it would be better to have the garden outside the fence after my dogs ate all of the cherry tomatoes as soon as they got red last summer.
I built 3 raised garden beds that measure 4 foot by 4 foot out of landscape timbers. In each bed we planted 2 tomato plants, 2 pepper plants, and some basil and cilantro in the middle. We had some extra room, so we were able to plant some squash and zucchini. Then we planted some black eyed susan and some prairie grass between the beds and the alley.
6 weeks later the tomatoes are doing great, while the squash is about to take over the zucchini.
Since we didn't plant everything until the second week of June, we haven't had much to pick yet, besides basil. We are looking forward to a bountiful harvest this fall.
John Kerry announced his choice of John Edwards for VP on July 6, 2004, exactly 20 days prior to the first day of the 04 Democratic convention. If Barack Obama follows the same schedule, he will announce his choice on Tuesday, August 5. Certainly one suspects the announcement will come prior to the commencement of the Olympics on Friday, which means the likelihood is that the announcement will come some time in the next 5 days.In the rest of the post they run down the complete short list (would that be the long short list?). The names that I am hearing pop up the most are Sen. Evan Bayh, Sen. Joe Biden, Gov. Tim Kaine, and Gov. Kathleen Sebelius. Out of those 4, Biden and Sebellius would be by far my top choices. However, I still prefer Bill Richardson and Wesley Clark.
Over the next couple days, I will be posting more about the possible candidates.
In the meantime, DesMoinesDem chimes in with her thoughts over at Bleeding Heartland.
Saturday, August 02, 2008
Friday, August 01, 2008
After referencing Britney Spears in a campaign commercial maybe McCain should consider naming Spears his running mate. She might help pick up the youth vote and the woman vote, and, like McCain, agrees that we should have total confidence in everything Bush does.