Do The Democrats Have What It Takes To Pull It Off In November? Maybe

Looking at the websites of the DCCC-recruited candidates, speaking with local political activists, campaign managers and candidates themselves, I'm getting a sinking feeling that the Democratic Party strategy for November is to let the Republicans defeat themselves. The Inside-the-Beltway Democrats-- the consultants, congressional leaders and professional losers who have authored a series of catastrophic Democratic Party defeats that have brought us the ugliness of the current Regime-- think shining a light on the excesses of the culture of corruption is somehow going to convince voters in red districts to overthrow the existing order.

Yesterday's WASHINGTON POST ran a guardedly optimistic article called "Handful of Races May Tip Control of Congress" by Dan Balz and Chris Cillizza. They site a handful of vulnerable Repugs caught up in the  myriad of GOP scandals-- the odious Santorum and Conrad Burns, and the hapless and pathetic Mike DeWine in Ohio-- as likely victims. "Not since 1994 has the party in power -- in this case the Republicans -- faced such a discouraging landscape in a midterm election. President Bush is weaker than he was just a year ago, a majority of voters in recent polls have signaled their desire for a change in direction, and Democrats outpoll Republicans on which party voters think is more capable of handling the country's biggest problems. The result is a midterm already headed toward what appears to be an inevitable conclusion: Democrats are poised to gain seats in the House and in the Senate for the first time since 2000. The difference between modest gains (a few seats in the Senate and fewer than 10 in the House) and significant gains (half a dozen in the Senate and well more than a dozen in the House) is where the battle for control of Congress will be fought."

Balz and Cillizza postulate that "what makes the year ahead compelling is the tension between two powerful factors: the broader political environment plainly favors Democrats, but the on-the-ground realities of many races give Republicans an advantage as they seek to preserve their majorities." The on-the-ground realities are what have been disturbing me as well.

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Sulzer to Take on Bob Ney in OH-18

It has become evident that Joe Sulzer will be the Democratic Nominee in OH-18 to take on Bob Ney and I call on Zack Space to resign and save the party a costly primary.
It has become clear that Joe Sulzer is not only the DCCC but also the ODP and in district choice to take on Bob Ney.  Some of Space's supporters have been trying to muddy the waters as seen here but the reality is Sulzer is going to win this campaign hands down.

A quick summary from the last FEC filings.
Sulzer Info:
    In this period alone Joe has raised 170696.08
    Cash on hand this period is 222418.01
       Contributors include: Attorneys, small business owners, elected officials, nurses, and farmers.  In fact about 64% of Joe's money comes from the OH-18 District.  However, Joe has also received contributions to his campaign from other candidate committees such as Congressman Rahm Emanuel, Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Congressman Tim Ryan.  In addition to all this Joe has also received contributions from local candidate committees such as the Nichols for Sheriff Committee.  Joe's finance report also gives credibility to the rumor that Sulzer has the backing of the Democratic Party, inferred mostly by the contributions from OPD Chair Redfurn, DCCC Chair Emanuel and Leader Pelosi whose PAC contributed 10, 000.00 in December.   Joe has also received contributions from the United Steelworkers PAC.

Space Info:
    In this period Zack Space has raised: 74207.49
    Cash on hand this period is 69001.11
     Debts owed: 15,450.00.... labeled in the filing as "photocopier lease" Damn that must be a ridiculously amazing copier.... Please notice the 15 THEN the comma.  
After seeing that, I again call on Zack Space to pull out of the primary so that we can focus on taking back the House for Dems, not fighting each other, in primaries with inevitable conclusions.

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Sam in DC here at My DD has posed an interesting question, and an inevitable one for anyone who has been reading my series on Rahm Emanuel (here and here and here and here and, most recetly, here). Should progressives starve the DSCC and the DCCC? This is what Sam wrote:

"As yesterday's disappointing episode on the Senate floor shows, there need to be new Dems representing us. While I would never jump ship and join another party, I do believe that we must show that these senators need to stand for something. I propose the netroots cut funding to the DNC, DSCC, and DCCC, so long as there are politicians within the party willing to be feed off our money, but refusing to stand for our principals."

[Let me break in here a moment and say that my own research has shown me that the DCCC under Boss Emanuel is the sworn and mortal enemy of progressive Democrats; to treat anything Emanuel-oriented differently than we'd treat something DeLay-oriented is something we-- progressives-- do at our peril. I am not as certain that the DSCC is as bad, although it looks pretty bad, especially if you look at the kind of assistance the DSCC is giving the odious Bob Casey against grassroots progressive Chuck Pennacchio in Pennsylvania. (I bet the DSCC would never get behind Carl Sheeler in his bid to dislodge Lincoln Chafee in Rhode Island.) As for the DNC, I have no idea at all why Sam is lumping them in with these guys. The DNC seems to have reformed itself tremendously since the bad old days of Terry McCauliffe. I haven't seen even one instance of them doing anything to harm progressives or grassroots candidates and I have seen them doing a lot of good in terms of strengthening local Democratic parties and becoming less and less of an out-of-touch Beltway agency for politicians'-career-enhancement. I feel confident that the DNC should be left out of this move.] Back to Sam:

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I'm investigating a number of races around the country so I can write about them for Down With Tyranny and I keep stumbling across the same villain no matter where I go, someone who I would have to say looks very much like the Democrats' very own Tom DeLay. His name is Rahm Emanuel and he fancies himself an old-time political boss, obsessed with power and a delusionary "ends justify the means" mantra.

Emanuel is on a crusade to root idea-oriented progressives and local activists out of races in districts with endangered Republican incumbents. Half the time I find a solid citizen looking to challenge a corruption-tainted Republican or an extremist who is out-of-touch with his district, I am finding that Emanuel has moved in with a wad of cash (and with big name national Democrats, some of whom have actual credibility with progressives like Barbara Boxer, Nancy Pelosi-- watch yer back, babe-- and John Kerry) on behalf of life-long Republicans who he convinces to switch parties to run as "Democrats."

I wasn't even looking into the race to replace Katherine Harris in Florida's 13th CD yet. But I stumbled on this fascinating article by Bullwinkle at, called "Helping Fight DCCC Interference in Florida Races". Read it because Emanuel is as much-- exactly as much-- a threat to democracy as Tom DeLay. And read Alexander Cockburn's story on Emanuel from December 9th's COUNTERPUNCH called "Only Millionaire Fence Straddler Need Apply". And one more on this creep: don't leave out "The Enforcer," a Hammer-like story, in ROLLING STONE. With ethicless scumbags like Rahm Emanuel and the crew of nitwits and scoundrels he's recruiting, the Republican vision will win even if the Republican Party loses.

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Defeating Deborah Pryce in OH-15: the first step is listening

Anyone who cares about politics in Columbus, Ohio....hell, anyone who cares about politics in the United States...should read this article by Jeff Zeleny of the Chicago Tribune covering an event with DCCC chair Rep. Rahm Emanuel in Columbus, Ohio last week:

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