In the last couple days, there have been several posts across the blogosphere citing what various candidates running for Congress have said on FISA and retroactive immunity for the telecoms. But so far, it's been all over the map. I'll try to corral all their statements into this diary, so you can see who the "good guys" are.
First, let's start off with the current House and Senate members who voted against this bill. They do deserve credit, as it's their jobs on the line.
Follow me below the fold to see the dozens of Democratic challengers who are standing up for the Constitution, and are against this FISA bill and retroactive immunity.
Democrat Jim Himes is running against faux moderate, Bush enabler Republican Congressman Chris Shays in Connecticut's 4th district this cycle and he's up on the air with his first ad, a great bio spot, check it out below.
This race is personal for me as CT-04 is my home district and in fact a vote for Shays in 1990 was one of the very first votes I ever cast. Now, mind you, back then, and even throughout the 90s, Shays did a decent job of actually representing what was pretty much a moderate district. But since Bush took office, Shays completely betrayed his constituents by standing by as the administration and the congressional leadership, which Shays may not have always agreed with but never did anything to effectively obstruct despite having been in congress since 1987, waged a disastrous war and ran roughshod over our constitution, our planet, our economy...well, the list goes on and on.
Last cycle, Shays was able to skillfully apply an Iraq blurring strategy to barely avoid ouster but this year that's going to be a lot more difficult. Not only is Jim Himes a better candidate with a stronger and clearer position on Iraq than Shays's 2006 challenger, but now there is a congressional record of Shays's voting against any and all bills that would have led to the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. Add that to the bluing of the district and the huge uptick in turnout we're likely to see this year, especially in the underperforming urban center of the district, Bridgeport, and the fact that Himes has raised the most money of any challenger this cycle and we have a real shot to finally send the last Republican congressman left in New England packing.
So, do me a favor and watch the ad, rate it up, spread the word about Himes, especially to any family and friends in Connecticut and, of course, contribute what you can to his campaign. Shays has a massive warchest and the Republicans are going to throw everything they have to defend this seat, so we are going to need to really step up in order to elect Jim Himes to represent my Republican parents in CT-04. So, do it for them. Show them what real representation in congress looks like.
Seriously, Lieberman has hitched his ride to this failed war, to this obstructionist senate minority and to this sad excuse for a Republican candidate and, unfortunately, has full confidence that nothing will be done about kicking him out of the caucus and stripping him of his committee chairmanship before November -- and probably not before January. When we count down to our 60 vote majority, let's remember, truly, we need to pick up 10 seats, not 9. We need to make this guy absolutely irrelevant.
On a conference call with reporters arranged by the McCain campaign, Lieberman, the 2000 Democratic vice presidential nominee, called the Democratic response to McCain's remarks "another partisan attempt to distort John McCain's words."
"To put it mildly, I'm disappointed by these reflexive attacks on what Sen. McCain said on the 'Today Show' this morning," Lieberman said. He added: "I regret these comments made today, and I hope we can get back to the facts." [...]
Lieberman said he finds it "most outrageous" to suggest McCain is out of touch.
You want to see what a real Connecticut Democrat looks like? Here's Jim Himes, challenger to Bush rubberstamp Chris Shays in CT-04, on McCain's comments today and the importance of bringing our troops home.
"John McCain's comments this morning are not only sorely out-of-touch, they are also hurtful to the families of troops serving in Iraq for whom nothing is more important than knowing when their loved ones will come home.
"If Chris Shays was serious about bringing our troops home, he wouldn't be co-chairing John McCain's campaign in Connecticut. Just like his party's standard-bearer, Chris Shays is deeply confused and out-of-touch when it comes to Iraq. In 2006 he promised voters he would support timelines, only to vote against them three times in 2007. Now, in 2008, he says he supports President Bush on Iraq and is working hard to elect an administration that clearly intends to keep American troops in harms way in Iraq for years if not decades.
"Connecticut families know we cannot afford a third term of the Bush-McCain-Shays policy on Iraq. It is long past time to give the Iraqi government a clear timeline for the full redeployment of American troops so we can start focusing on the challenges that face us here at home."
Check out Josh Marshall's excellent video about Lieberman's betrayal of Democrats (especially of Obama who, you'll recall, agreed NOT to campaign for Ned Lamont in 2006) and what we all can do to help nudge Democratic senate leadership to boot him from the caucus once our increased majority is sworn in.
As The KickingDonkey informed us on the other day, George Bush traveled to Connecticut on Friday to raise money for David Cappiello, GOP challenger to CT-05 freshman Dem Chris Murphy. The event cost donors $1,000 a head and was held at the Kent, CT home of...wait for it...Henry Kissinger. Classic.
In good blogger style, the CT netroots made sure no one forgot that the exceptionally unpopular Mr. Bush was coming to town and so held a march against the war to protest his arrival. My Left Nutmeg covered it HERE with more pics HERE. Looks like a great turnout.
As for the fundraiser itself, helpfully, the CT Republican Party has provided its own documentary evidence of the event, although a few pictures seem to be missing. In a great catch by MattW, take a look at the CT GOP's Flickr photo stream, and you'll see there's a conspicuous gap of about 7 missing photos between the last shot of David Cappiello and the first picture of George Bush up on the stage with Kissinger. Hmm, why the scrubbing I wonder? Bizarrely, CT-04's Chris Shays, who co-chaired the event, doesn't seem to have the same compunction about appearing with Bush in public.
So to help make Shays, and Cappiello for that matter, regret embracing Mr. 28%, send them a message by supporting Murphy as well as Shays's excellent challenger, Jim Himes, over at Act Blue.