UT-01: Rob Bishop's Deep Pockets

Bowen on ActBlue.

Democratic candidate Morgan Bowen has been after Congressman Rob Bishop (UT-01) for several months regarding his campaign contributions and corporate ties to companies like engineering firm Es3, and the nuclear waste importing Energy Solutions.  And it has fallen on deaf ears.

Morgan's campaign has garnered a lot of local activist attention via an aggressive YouTube and blog based messaging machine, but has been ignored, for the most part, by the majority of Utah's media (who are busy explaining to voters why they must re-elect Republicans because "their stuff is already in the office" and "that straight ticket ballot just makes it so easy!").  But now, it seems Bowen was onto something, and the media is beginning to notice.  Via the Salt Lake Tribune:

Salt Lake Tribune:  Rep. Rob Bishop has secured millions of dollars in congressional earmarks that benefit a small engineering firm, whose executives continue to contribute heavily to the Utah Republican's re-election efforts.

   The latest campaign-finance reports, released this week, show the leaders of Engineering and Software Systems Solutions, known as ES3, donated $22,000 to Bishop in August. That money accounted for more than half the funding Bishop raised between July 1 and Sept. 30.

   This year Congress approved a budget bill that included an $800,000 earmark for a program the contracts with ES3, a California firm with an office in Clearfield. The money funds what the military calls Science Engineering Lab and Data Integration (SELDI), which is run through Hill Air Force Base. SELDI pays ES3 to track spare jet parts to avoid duplication.

   The earmark and the contributions are nothing new. ES3 holds a fundraiser for Bishop each August, normally after the Utah Republican has inserted an earmark in legislation but before its final passage.

This bad news comes for Bishop hot on the heals of his back-and-forth comments on the bailout (It was even harder for him to vote against it after they put the pork in!), and a now stalled battle between Utah and Energy Solutions, another Bishop campaign contributor - to the tune of $28,000 - petitioning the state and federal representatives for approval to import radioactive waste from Italy into Utah and Nevada.

Morgan is not your perfect Democrat.  He is what is referred to, in the West, as a "Utah Democrat" (think of a more libertarian Jon Tester).  But he has shown judgment far exceeding Utah's current representation (including Blue Dog Jim Matheson, who Bowen butted heads with speaking out against the FISA re-write and immunity for Telco's), and promises to steer Utah away from oil-shale and toward wind energy.  Please throw him a bone. This is a low dollar race, so even $10 could make the difference.  Visit Morgan's YouTube Page for an idea of where he's heading, and his latest ad here.

Utah has a long way to go to be even purple (despite what delusional state party leaders might tell the candidates), but with a little help, Bowen will lead us in the right direction.  

Bowen on ActBlue.

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Bush asks Congress to take a Giant Step Backward on Global Warming

Bush wants Congress to lift the ban on developing Oil Shale on federal lands on the Green River Plateau in Colorado and Utah.

That brought an immediate response from Colorado's Democratic Governor Bill Ritter:


"Someday the technology may exist that will allow us to responsibly extract oil from Colorado shale. But that day is years away. That day will only come when crucial questions about impacts to water, air quality, wildlife and our local communities -- are fully understood and answered. That day is not today. This was a premature and unnecessary act by the federal government that is not supported by science or technology.

Extracting oil from shale rock is an extremely dirty, insanely carbon intensive process, that will dump huge amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere because the shale rock has to be heated to 700 degrees to get the oil out.

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100 in 48: A Tiny "Ask" from Utah

(Bowen on ActBlue)  

On Tuesday, Utah Democrats were surprised by something many of you may take for granted, but for us was a sure sign that at least one of our congressional candidates "got it."

Via a press release, we learned that Morgan Bowen (Democratic Candidate for UT-1) had announced that if he had been a member of Utah's federal delegation, he would have voted against any bill that encouraged granting retro-active immunity for Telco's.   This was huge news for any Democrat in the state, let alone the underdog of the underdogs, so surrounded by Republicans parroting Bush's every word. But the real story behind Bowen's press release is a much grander tale than a simple announcement to local media.  

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Utah Democratic Candidate Takes a Stand Against Telco Immunity

(Crossposted at DailyKos) (Morgan Bowen on ActBlue)

Something you may be used to hearing about a Democratic candidate in other states, but here in Utah, this is truly a first.  We have but one Democrat in our federal delegation, and on FISA, Matheson has proven himself a true Bush Dog.  Now it appears a new candidate is ready to step up and show true leadership on a key issue.

Morgan is the Democratic candidate for Utah's first congressional district, a seat currently held by school voucher supporting, "drill here, drill now" parroting, warrantless wiretap backing Rob Bishop.  In addition to the 2/1 odds Morgan faces unseating the corporate funded incumbent, he also faces a battle with in-state leadership as a result of Rep. Jim Matheson, our only sitting Democrat, and faithful Blue Dog.

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Cali and Utah Superdelegates For Obama [UPDATED x 2]

It's just been confirmed by Time's Mark Halperin that California DNC member Ed Espinoza has thrown his support behind Sen. Barack Obama.  

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