DC Area Events esp. Webb, Mom

PLEASE FORWARD, please!

Three Great Events to Win With Webb

Given the incredible scandals and incompetence of the Republicans who control all three branches of government, so many of them who thought they had secure jobs even a few months ago are running scared.  They are rats running off the Bush "Mission Accomplished" ship that started sinking just over a year ago.

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Thoughts on Barack Obama

Tom Grayman is a pollster, publisher of The Intelligence Squad website, and author of the book Ghosts of Florida: Making Elections Fair for Blacks

I don't think Barack Obama is great.

Neither do I consider him a disappointment.

But I do think that much too much attention has been paid to, and too many expectations have been placed on the shoulders of, Senator Obama.

Before he set foot in the the Senate chamber, he was celebrated as the next political superstar, based entirely on the strength of his keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention.

That was a mistake.

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The mile-wide earmarks loophole in the 'ethics' bill

The aim of S 2349 is, of course, to provide the nation's legislators with enough cover to beat back corrupt Congress charges while ensuring that the most lucrative abuses remain available.

Thus, the Boston Globe on one of the wrinkles in the bill, which

...is meant to control the spiraling number of earmarks -- local projects designed to help a specific industry -- that are often put into bills with no public debate.

The measure would not ban such projects, but it would require lawmakers to disclose any earmarks at least 24 hours before debate begins.

But because the lobbying bill defines earmarks as only non-federal projects, at least 5,283 of the 12,852 earmarks in the 2006 spending bills alone would have been exempt from the rules. This is because the earmarks were funded through federal agencies...

Geddit? A legislator can still work the earmark trick without drawing attention to himself so long as he launders the cash through a Federal agency!

And this was a bill passed by the Senate 90-8.

(Feingold, Kerry and Obama voted against, as did Coburn, DeMint, Graham, Inhofe and McCain.

No idea.)

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Healing In IL-06

The acrimony is (SLOWLY) dying down. The raw, festering wounds have been "salved" somewhat by time and space. It was one of the nastiest races I've seen in 26 years of politics. And I've been involved in races from small town Alderman, to Chicago Aldermen and Mayors, and even Presidential Campaigns. I'm talking "inner circle" involved, more often than not.

The Duckworth Supporters...Or more accurately...The "Anti-Cegelis" (for a variety of reasons) bloggers have figured out (I hope) that they were only fanning the flames of dissension, by not allowing the Cegelis Camp an opportunity to vent their frustrations, hurt and anger after the election. And in retrospect, I think we can see now that they/we were just desperately trying to be heard, above the din of "conventional wisdom", before the election.

All that being said, let's talk about what it's going to take to move forward:

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Obama the Phony

So Obama comes out against censure.  I believe this comment is apt:

The problem with Obama is not that he's a junior senator, or that he's too inexperienced or that he "needs more time." Obama's problem is that he's smart enough to know better.  I refuse to believe he does not recognize the peril in which this country finds itself.  I could probably count on one hand the number of times I have seen him speak, and yet from this narrow sampling I can tell you without a doubt that this man has an intellectual leg up on 90 percent of the US Senate.  For him to vacillate on issues of such pressing importance, and pander to the DLC "triangulation" schtick is unforgivable.

That is what irks me the most.  I expect that kind of behavior from the likes of a Biden or (worse) a Lieberman.  They've shown their colors.  Obama, on the other hand, has an opportunity to avoid stepping into that "DC insider" mold, and so far as I can tell he's squandering it.  He may be a politician for a different season, but that doesn't mean he shouldn't do the right and just thing and support his colleague in holding a criminal accountable for his crimes.

This is my problem too.  Though I consider them bad Democrats, I can kind of see where Biden and Lieberman are coming from - these guys have been in the Senate so long that they have become freaks of nature, catered to 24 hours a day by a staff and bombarded with constituent letters and concerns and crazies and policy wonks and political consultants nonstop.  But Senator Obama has been in the Senate for two years.  He should know better.  He does know better.  He gives nice little wry comments, like the Belafonte crack or the 'Lieberman is a Republican' line, and then does precisely the opposite of what he knows is right.

What a tool.

For more on this phony progressive, take a walk down memory lane...

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Diaries

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