Digby, John, Jacqui and D-Day have been working non-stop on our campaign of cable TV ads to get one of the few senatorial culprits in the war against health care reform who actually has to confront voters next year–Blanche Lincoln–to reconsider her position.
|By: Howie Klein Thursday July 2, 2009 2:01 pm|
|By: Howie Klein Saturday June 20, 2009 11:00 am|
I want to introduce you to Anthony Woods, a progressive young Democrat running to replace Ellen Tauscher in a congressional district northeast of San Francisco (CA-10), a district that has been trending decidedly Democratic (Gore won with 55%, Kerry with 56% and Obama with 65%). Anthony is one of the less likely candidates we’ve visited with– and one of the most remarkable. Born on Travis Airforce Base near Fairfield, the biggest city in the district, Anthony– raised by a single mom working as a housekeeper– earned a congressional appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He signed up to lead a platoon in Iraq– twice– and earned a bronze star and then earned a Masters Degree from Harvard. He gained national fame when he discharged from the military for standing up for equality and telling his commanding officer that he is gay, a violation of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Currently he works as an economic policy advisor. He anything but a professional politician and the primary in CA-10 is swarming with them.
|By: Howie Klein Monday June 15, 2009 6:30 pm|
Emanuel hoped that by gratuitously attaching the car bill to the IMF bailout he could count on holding onto a batch of nervous Democrats–and pressure some Republicans. Recall, 59 Republicans broke with Boehner and Cantor to cross the aisle on June 9th and vote for Cash for Clunkers. Some of them are the exact targets Emanuel has been trying to woo away from the hysterical Cantor in the Supplemental battle, particularly Michigan Republicans like Thaddeus McCotter, Fred Upton, Dave Camp, Vern Ehlers, Candice Miller and Mike Rogers. Emanuel figured it could also give him a shot at John Shimkus (R-IL), Mike Turner (R-OH), Patrick Tiberi (R-OH), Mark Souder (R-IN), Don Manzullo (R-IL), Joe Pitts (R-PA), Tim Johnson (R-IL), Steve Austria (R-OH), Steve LaTouette (R-OH), Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) and a few other Midwestern Republicans whose constituents have been devastated by the auto industry collapse. Of course that goes for plenty of Democrats as well, particularly Midwest freshmen Mark Schauer (D-MI), Gary Peters (D-MI), Andre Carson (D-IN), and Marcia Fudge (D-OH), Debbie Halvorson (D-IL), Bill Foster (D-IL) and Steve Driehaus (D-OH).
|By: Howie Klein Monday June 15, 2009 1:20 pm|
Jane reports that Ann Kirkpatrick may have been frightened into standing up to Emanuel and voting “no” tomorrow. Blue Dogs who don’t will suffer at the polls next year. And Emanuel knows he’s starting to lose them. So what’s his latest strategy? We hear he’s turning to vulnerable Republicans and telling them he can get the DCCC to “go easy” on them next year if they vote for the Supplemental tomorrow. It’s one thing if he makes a deal with Vern Buchanan in Florida or Chris Smith in New Jersey, but we’re hearing that he’s offering to protect Republicans who have been slated as major DCCC targets, like Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI), Bill Young (R-FL), Leonard Lance R-NJ) and Charlie Dent (R-PA). Watch tomorrow to see if any of these characters cross over and vote with Team Emanuel to bail out European bankers.
|By: Howie Klein Saturday June 13, 2009 11:00 am|
Sometimes I have to pump some political courage into our candidates and incumbents and coax them to support difficult or controversial items on the progressive agenda. Our guest today isn’t that kind of candidate. Jonathan Tasini, whose politico-spiritual mentor is Paul Wellstone, is the kind of figure who I fully expect to call me and ask me why I’m not working harder to round up more votes for Employee Free Choice or against the War Supplemental.
|By: Howie Klein Sunday June 7, 2009 4:00 pm|
Walt Minnick has the most reactionary voting record of any of the Democratic freshmen elected last November. He’s voted more frequently with the GOP than with the Democrats and the leadership just lets him slide because his district is so hopelessly red– the home of the Aryan Nations and America’s biggest concentration of neo-Nazis and domestic terrorists (Obama barely managed a third of the vote last November). Minnick has been very careful to tow a very right-wing line when it comes to voting, so right-wing in fact that the GOP’s #1 recruitment target, state Treasurer Ron Crane, has just announced he won’t challenge him. The district likes Minnick; he’s proven that despite the Democratic Party affiliation, he’s just like they are– against anything remotely progressive and very much a part of what author Charles Pierce has dubbed Idiot America.
|By: Howie Klein Saturday June 6, 2009 11:00 am|
Normally the grassroots likes ‘em and the Inside-the-Beltway Establishment hates ‘em. They cost a lot of money that can go to attacking the other party, cause friction in your own party, can… well when the damn base gets involved, anything can happen. Yes, it can; it’s called democracy.
|By: Howie Klein Saturday May 30, 2009 11:00 am|
In what looked– at least from the outside– as one of the most unlikely outcomes of the 2008 election cycle, Democrat Linda Ketner came within two percentage points of beating entrenched Establishment wingnut Henry Brown in a gerrymandered South Carolina district specifically drawn to be an easy win for Republicans. At the same time, Obama only managed 42% in the district. Linda was the only South Carolina Democrat who came close to ousting an incumbent last year. Until near the end of the campaign the DCCC and the punditocracy didn’t have a clue. The fact that Linda is openly gay and openly progressive on social issues– and very outspoken– caused quite a few people to not even give the race a second look.
|By: Howie Klein Saturday May 23, 2009 11:00 am|
When we first endorsed him, no insiders thought he had even an outside chance to win the primary, let alone beat an entrenched, well-financed Republican incumbent. But almost immediately we realized that Alan was anything but a run of the mill Democrat. Tireless, brilliant, idealistic and down to earth, the more we got to know of Alan through the primary and general campaigns, the more we realized he could be a rare leader in Congress who could make an outsized difference.
|By: Howie Klein Saturday May 16, 2009 11:00 am|
There hasn’t been much of a spotlight focused on the Ohio Senate primary (May, 2010), except in Ohio– at least not yet. The Republicans have all but picked their candidate for the open seat, ex-lobbyist (for Oman and Haitian dictator Baby Doc Duvalier) and pre-Mean Jean Schmidt Congressman Rob Portman who went on to serve as Bush’s Trade Representative and then his director of OMB, two jobs at which he failed spectacularly, particularly for Ohio working families.
Today we’re going to start looking at the contest by meeting the more progressive of the two candidates, Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner.