David Broder Criticizes New DNC Primary Calendar
of the Washington Post
published a column this morning criticizing the new DNC primary calendar. The article is entitled, "The Democrats' Dysfunctional Calendar
" and makes some very strong points as to why the new primary calendar is a poor substitute for true reform in the primary system.
True reform will allow for a diverse group of people from different parts of the country and with different social, economic and racial backgrounds to determine the strongest possible candidate for President. The new system is merely a band-aid that allows four states to determine over the course of two weeks who Democrats want to lead the United States for the next four years.
Enough from me though, David Broder is far more eloquent than I. Here are some of the key points he made in his Washington Post column
"This Democratic version of affirmative action leaves a lot to be desired. Unions are a major source of Democratic votes and money. Maybe Rhode Island should be rewarded for being a stronghold of union activity at a time when labor elsewhere is beleaguered. And gays vote Democratic; shouldn't the states that are home to San Francisco and Key West be allowed to vote early? And if Jewish contributors keep the party solvent, shouldn't New York be up there with the other pacesetters?
"This way lies madness, and madness is what the Democrats have wrought. When they started tinkering with their rules after the 1968 election disaster, they unleashed a fierce competition among the states to be at the head of the line, where the contests have the greatest impact on weeding the field and crowning the eventual winner."
Later in the article, Broder analyzes New Hampshire's role historically in the primary calendar.
"Historically, New Hampshire has fulfilled that responsibility. Voters there -- in both parties and especially among the numerous independents who also vote in the primary -- take their role seriously. They turn up at town meetings and they ask probing questions. So do the interviewers at local papers and broadcast stations. So do high school students.CLICK HERE
"Whatever New Hampshire does, the country will be forced to witness the huge field of candidates flashing by in perpetual motion during the December holidays and the frantic first weeks of January, not standing still anywhere long enough to be measured for the job they are trying to win."
to read David Broder's Washington Post
column in its entirety, or click on the link below:http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/30/AR2006083002732.html
Harper's Magazine Investigates Bradley Interests in Oil, Halliburton, Big Pharma
Harper's Magazine released an investigative article today by Ken Silverstein, Washington Editor of Harper's Magazine.
The article entitled, "Invested Interests: Analyzing Rep. Jeb Bradley's Portfolio
," revealed a strong relationship between Bradley's votes in Congress and his extensive energy and pharmaceutical stock holdings.
According to Harpers, in 2004 Bradley, who owns almost $1 million in energy industry stocks, saw the value of his energy holdings increase by $100,000. This increase followed closely on the heels of nine roll call votes that benefited the energy industry at the expense of consumers and the environment. Harpers also noted that Bradley has accepted $45,000 in PAC contributions from energy companies.
Among Bradley's energy stock holdings in early 2003, when he first took office, were 231 shares in Halliburton, the controversial firm that Dick Cheney headed prior to his election as vice president in 2000. According to Harpers, in October 2003 Bradley purchased 72 additional shares in the company just days before Bradley voted to protect Halliburton's no-bid contracts in Iraq. In July 2004, he dumped his Halliburton shares at a profit of roughly $2,800.
Harpers also chronicled the close relationship between Bradley's pharmaceutical stock holdings and his votes in Congress. "While New Hampshire seniors are forced to choose between paying their energy bills and paying for their medicine, Jeb Bradley is raking in bundles," said Clemons.
According to Silverstein, Bradley owned over $300,000 in pharmaceutical stock when he took office in 2003. A year later, after Bradley voted with the drug lobby against allowing Medicare to negotiate directly with pharmaceutical manufacturers, and against allowing seniors to re-import drugs from Canada at a discount, Bradley's pharmaceutical holdings increased in value by over $40,000.
Check out the whole story here:http://www.harpers.org/sb-jeb-bradley-invested-1156785610.html
Portsmouth Herald - "Is The Granite State Leaning Blue?"
You bet it is! We have been talking about keeping New Hampshire blue for a while now and it looks like the mainstream media (MSM) is beginning to sit up and take note.
The Porstmouth Herald published "Is The Granite State Leaning Blue?
Democrats are on the rise in NH, but the article makes a good point: We still have a lot of work to do if we are going to send Democrats to Congress and win majorities in the State House and Senate. So spread the word, get involved, and get pumped!
3 Nashua and 1 Peterborough Viz
There were 4 visibilities this week between Nashua and Peterborough; Tues, Wed, Thurs morning were all Nashua and Thurs night the Peterborough viz took place. Tues was an interesting day because many of the Nashua people decided that they werent going out that day because it was rainning so we rescheduled for Wed morning. I found out later that day talking to one of the Hodes field organizers that there were four Hodes people that actually showed up. So thanks to them there was a small viz in Nashua on Tues anyway.
Wed we all got organized and we got 8 people out on exit 4 in Nashua. We had 2 Hodes people, 2 State Rep candidates, 1 volunteer, 2 people from the coordinated, and Brett Cooper who heads the Gottesman and Foster campaigns. Many people honked, waved, but no dogs. I even say people i havent seen in a long time too, mostly because exit 4 is where my house is but it was some what interesting. Even my mom drove by on her way to work, I dont even think she smiled it was a half effort wave, not even a honk, I was a little disappointed.
Thurs morning we parked at the one and only greek church in Nashua, yay greek people! We walked to the center of the bridge at exit 5 and watched as many truck drivers and other Lynch supporters honked and waved to us. Once again no dogs tho. We have 5 people for exit 5 that day: 2 coordinated people, Cooper, and 2 state rep candidates. The cool thing about the 2 state rep candidates is that i graduated with them from high school. Its exciting seeing younger people want to bring down the average age of 153 yrs of age in the state house. It shows some hope for the future in my eyes. We also noticed that day that we thing UPS is full of republicans. The UPS warehouse is right down the street and all the trucks go over this bridge to get onto the highway. I think out of probably 25 UPS trucks, 2 actually waved; although we did count one of those truck drivers as 2 because he honked, jumped around in his seat, yelled, and waved his fists in the air in support for Lynch. And we remembered the poster that one of the staff made too, it said "Honk 4 Lynch"; so we had a lot more people honk at us.
The viz in Peterborough was great because of the outcome we had. We had something like 16 people show up but the only problem was that the traffic wasnt as busy as I hoped it would be. We had our viz at 530, so it was either get no1 to show up or have a lot of people show up and just hope people decide to pointlessly drive. The viz went well though, there were a lot of Peterborough people, even people from Keene and Rindge. 2 Hodes people showed up too. After the viz the younger people in the group, we all went to a pub and got something to eat, and it was a good way to get to know people personally in the area. Overall I think it was a success. O and there was a dog at this one...I guess I was wrong because not only did he wave, but he blew kisses too. It was amazing. His name was Raul, hes from spain he said. He said he was cousins with the dog from Hampton. Sorry Miranda for showing you the reasons why it couldnt have happened, I guess miracles happen. Did I mention that he talked too...
If you were there what do you think??
NH Democrats Out In Force On Education
This week saw NH Democrats unite behind education. It was Second Congression District candidate Paul Hodes who got the ball rolling by joining with Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Rahm "Rahmbo" Emanuel in support of a College Tuition Tax Credit. The Refundable tax credit for college tuition proposed by Rahm Emanuel and Paul Hodes would create a $3,000 a year credits to undergrad and graduate students.
Granite State Democrats also gathered Wednesday at UNH in Durham to talk about the College Tax Credit, their accomplishments regarding education, and their continued dedication to making education a legislative priority. Senator Martha Fuller Clark (MFC!) and Executive Council Candidate Bev Hollingworth (Bev) were joined by state representatives Terie Norelli, Marjorie Smith, and Naida Kaen. Exeter high school teacher Kevin Fleming and Concord former professor June Frazer also joined.
UNH College Democrats President Nick Christiansen summed up the situation as it stands pretty well. "A lot of people have $15,000, $20,000 or more. I don't know how they do it, but we have to if we want the education." Nick has $10,000 worth of debt of his own.
Check out the coverage from the event in the Portsmouth Herald
and Foster's Daily Democrat
"An Effort To Ease Education Costs
," by Emily Aaronson
"Higher Education Costs Decried By Democrats At UNH Forum
," by Larry Clow
Here's a couple more facts about Democrats versus Republicans on Education:
- John Lynch committed to students in his first budget that those first-year NH students who receive the maximum Pell Grant and with the help of Democrats in the NH House and Senate, these students are now able to attend the public universities here in New Hampshire for no additional tuition.
- Despite continued increases in college tuition costs, Republicans Charlie Bass and Jeb Bradley supported President Bush's $12.7 billion cut to college student loans.
- John Lynch is also encouraging more and more young people to consider college with Project Mentor. A program that recruits college students to mentor middle school students and encourage them to begin considering higher education.
- In NH, 37,666 students currently borrow money to attend college and seventy percent of the Bush eduaction cuts will be shouldered directly by students and parents. The hike in interest rates alone amounts to an additional cost of $680 a year for one student.
So this is a delayed posting but o well...The Nashua canvass went pretty good there was about 20 volunteers that showed up and we covered all of Ward 2, and most of Ward 5 and 9. We knocked on close to 500 doors, we had about 120 contacts (a lot of the ones I talked to were all for Lynch and promised to go out and vote).
Next time in Nashua we will get more volunteers and we will knock on even more doors, and thats a guaren-sheed. The problem was with this one that none of the state reps came out to help the canvass. We NEED them to support themselves and the rest of the party. But overall for the first one that I have set up I personally thought it went pretty well, you learn from your mistakes and change them for the next time.
One of the problems we ran into was we set up differently than one of the head people in Nashua wanted us to so we had to change the setup a little the night before. I was up til 1am, but no worries about that. Like I said next time will be better cause you just learn from that. If anyone went what were your thoughts about the canvass? what do you think should have been done differently?
Hello world and a special shout-out to my peeps in Auburn and the Manch. I am Andrew, one of the fine interns this summer at the NHDP. I actually prefer the title of spreader of joy to intern, I think it helps show the Democratic Party is full of vibrancy and good things. Actually it just sounds better than intern cause it helps me forget im not being paid (maybe if we got more donations I could get paid hint hint).
Anyway I thought I'd let everyone know what the inner workings of the NHDP are like and show the staff here are real people and not the super heros everyone thinks they are. Working with these people has probably been the best part of my summer experince here at the democracy stronghold aka the NHDP headquaters. I guess I'll start with the field staff people (the task masters). I like to think of them as the enforcers of democracy making sure everyone participates in democracy. They are also the ones that always seem to be giving me more and more work, and its not always easy. Then again I don't know too many people that can brag they put labels on 2,000 or so canvass packets. Labeling, addressing, and sealing of envelopes is work you can defienatly be proud of. I know when I leave after a back breaking day of helping the field people I made a differance in democracy.
The field staff are some tricky people too, its hard to say no to their smiling faces when they give you tasks. Then again if I had an intern I'd be wanting them to make calls for me too, so I guess I can see where they're coming from.
Although the best part of my day is, by far, lunch time. Being from the ManchVegas area and a firm believer in eating I happen to know many eating establishments here in the Manch. So it has been defaulted to me to be in charge of getting lunch. It can be quite the tricky operation getting lunch, many people here in the office being very thoughtful people need extra time to decide on where they'd like to get lunch from and where. Even though it may be difficult to take orders, the real challange comes with the procurement of the food. Sometimes getting the best food in Manch means having to overcome such obsticales such as language and location. But I am always willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to bring eatable joy to the staff of Fort Democracy (NHDP HQ).
After lunch comes the second most crucial part to keeping democracy alive in the Granite State, that is going on democracy missions to exotic locales such as the Home Depot, Staples, and the Dollar Store. Some may argue that going to Staples is not as important as say canvassing, but where do you think those paper clips come from? They certainly don't grow on trees, they have to be retreived from the plentiful stock piles at Staples. Therefore doing activities most would associate with a gofer are critical to protecting the indivual rights of all Americans.
All in all my summer spent with the fine folks of the NHDP has been the best summer since last summer. I've gotten to meet loads of cool peeps here at the office. We've laughed, cried (when your order is forgotten by a restauraunt), had fun, been merry, and made a differance in the world. All our sweat, tears and empty take-out containers are coming to a climax (some one needs to take the trash out to the curb) and elections are just around the corner. I have faith that my intern brethren and myself have done all we can to to further democracy in New Hampshire. I can't wait for next summer when hopefully they'll give me a job and I can spend my days making a difference in the world. And I encourage everyone to help out in any way they can (so there is less work for interns) to Keep NH Blue.
Netroots Loves Paul Hodes
We all know that Paul Hodes
has strong grassroots support in CD2, but not enough people know about how much netroots
loves him. ActBlue
today, and it was later picked up by uber blogger KOS
. Here's what ActBlue
said about Hodes:
Paul Hodes' campaign fits the “Northeast Strategy” to a T. An aggressive former prosecutor who has sent environmental criminals to jail, Hodes is taking on an out-of-touch Republican incumbent in this blue-leaning district. (NH-02 voted for Kerry over Bush by a 52-47 margin.) Hodes’ strong progressive values are the perfect antidote to Republican corruption both in.Hodes
has a great chance in November, and I think we need to start giving him credit where credit is due. He has a great record and that's a lot more than do nothing congressman Charlie Bass can say.
On National S’mores Day, we took to the streets… not to tell everyone about the delicious-ness that is graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate, but to spread the word about Gov. Lynch, MFC, Bev, and our local state rep candidates…
At 7:30am in the center of Hampton seven dedicated candidates and volunteers greeted me, all of whom rolled out of bed a little early to stand on the street corner, hold signs, and express general excitement for the upcoming elections. After throwing back a cup of Dunk’s coffee, we hooted and hollered for an hour, held signs, and even posed for some pictures… Thanks to the wives, candidates, friends, commuters and even dogs who came by and met our cheers with honks and waves…
And later that day, we jumped around in Market Square… again waving signs for passersby. While most of our onlookers were from out of town, we were well received by the young crowd who lounged at the BNG tables across from us and at the benches near the other coffee place in the Square. And after waving and smiling for so many people, we headed off to State Street Saloon for apps and conversation…
While some may not think that visibilities are effective, I strongly disagree – seeing neighbors holding signs and supporting candidates leads to name recognition, a desire for more info and certainly votes on Election Day. No, I don’t have stats to show you how many votes we got from our two hours of public display, but I know the positive response we got is certainly affirmation that we’re on our way to many victories in November….
… and don’t forget to have s’mores to celebrate.