• comment on a post Does Race Still Matter? over 8 years ago

    Even in blue states like Maryland where I live, the race of candidates in the Senate contest has gotten a LOT of attention. Some pundits believe that if AA turn out in large numbers in the Democratic primary that Mfume will probably win. However, these same pundits also believe that the Mfume-Steele race would be a lot tighter and Mfume could lose in November against Steele in the general election (although after Steele's horrible week, I think that assertion is very much in doubt) b/c white conservative Democrats might not show up to vote for Mfume but would vote for Cardin if he won the Democratic primary.

    So race plays an important factor not only for blacks voting for white candidates but whites voting for black candidates. Are whites, specifically white Democrats willing to turn out for a black Senate candidate in a state that has a 2:1 advantage in Democratic registration?  If Mfume wins the Democratic nomination, will Mfume face a similiar situation as Mary Landrieu where he has to set up phone banking operations that beg white Dems in Montgomery county and other predominantly white areas in the state to come out to vote for him around 5 pm?

    Inquiring minds like myself want to know!! I want to know if loyalty to the Democratic party is just a one way street held against African Americans, who are expected to give their vote to Democrats on Election Day with VERY LITTLE in return. Or if white Democratic voters in Maryland, despite their misgivings with Mfume, will in the end support him for the sake of the party in the same way that AAs hold back their misgivings with white candidates for the sake of the party!!

    You know what? I don't think most African Americans impose a litmus test on Democratic politicians. If polls are correct, African Americans are socially conservative and much more economically liberal than current Democratic politicians. As far as I know, the only litmus test that AAs impose is just to give a damn about our concerns. Scratch that--at least just pretend to give a damn about our concerns. And not just 2 weeks before Election Day either. How about just showing up 6 months to a year before the election and asking for our vote and then following through on the perennial campaign promises that are made and then broken to the AA community? How about respecting AA not only as voters but as individuals instead of marginalizing us and our concerns?  

  • of the presidential signing of the VRA yesterday, Spencer!! Your descriptions made me feel like I was right there with you.

    I caught a few minutes of your interview with Joe Madison while commuting to work today. Apparently, it was a repeat, but the little that I caught of it, Joe and you covered some important topics like suppression of the vote through barriers to voter registration and incumbent protection through redistricting. As with your C-SPAN appearance, you did a great job of explaining the issues!!

    Ok, now that I've buttered you up, when are you going to cover my question about section 2 of the VRA? Here's the question again in case you forgot:

    If you could, during your series of posts here, please give us a brief synopsis of section 2 as well as section 5 of the Voting Rights Act?

    http://www.mydd.com/comments/2006/7/12/2 14054/047/2#2

    I'm eagerly awaiting your post especially on Section 2. You got to keep this GW alum happy  you know!! ;) I'm just messing with you, but seriously, I'm still interested in reading your section 2 analysis. Even though I haven't commented on your posts, I really enjoy having you post here and thanks again to the MyDD crew for inviting Spencer to come here to post!!



  • comment on a post Court Stops Photo ID in GA Primary over 8 years ago

    Hello Spencer,

    I'm glad to see you posting here. I really enjoyed your C-SPAN appearance a few days ago. You explained the photo id and bilingual ballots issues so well on Washington Journal!! I took Voting Rights Law at GWU several years ago. I wish I had taken the class with you b/c you explained the issues so well but unfortunately, you began teaching at GW about 2 or 3 years after I graduated. I'm not saying that my adjunct professors (2 lawyers from the Voting Section of DoJ) were terrible or anything. I just had a tough time with a lot of the analysis in that class.

    It's been a while since I took the class, but I really struggled with understanding Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. If you could, during your series of posts here, please give us a brief synopsis of section 2 as well as section 5 of the Voting Rights Act?

    I'd really appreciate it.

    Oh, I plan to buy your book. Does it cover Section 2 analysis in it?

    Thank you for posting these updates on the Voting Rights Act. It doesn't get a lot of play in the blogosphere, but it's really important for a lot of us.... Also I want to thank MyDD owners for inviting you to guest-blog here. I'm really enjoying these posts!! Keep them coming!! Keep them coming!! :)

  • It depends on where you live. Here in the DC metro area, This Week with George S. airs at 9 am EST. You're going to have to check your local listings to find out what time it airs in your area. Maybe you could go to yahoo tv listings and find it there?

  • I believe these Armstrong allegations are meant to be the first firing shot against Warner in 2008.

    I think what Warner detractors are going to do to take him down is to link Jerome's dealings with the SEC with allegations that Mark Warner earned his millions by insider trading.

    The "insider trading" charges were levied against Warner during his 2001 Gubernatorial campaign and it appears that his opposition (whoever it may be--Clinton/Republicans--doesn't matter at the end of the day who it is) is just going to use them against him again in the 2008 race.

    Here's a question from the last debate in the 2001 gubernatorial race that touched on the issue:

    MB: Mr. Warner, some of your critics have stated that you went from a zero dollars to a personal fortune of over 200 million based on inside information provided by Maryland Democratic congressmen. This practice in the cellular phone industry has since been banned. How would you respond to those critics?

    MW: Well, I say it is not true. I applied and my first business partner in the cellular phone industry was the Washington Post. I was a minority partner with the Washington Post. Are you saying that the Washington Post was somehow doing something untoward? The fact of the matter was, the Federal Communications Commission put out a request for cellular license applications. I joined with the Washington Post and other businesses in applying. I have been attacked for this. Attacked by the most personal, negative attack that I have seen in recent Virginia history - compared me to the mafia, John Dillinger, Al Capone. Mr. Earley placed it on his web site and only brought it down when you and other reporters called him on it. Negative old-style campaigning.

    As a matter of fact, that attack was so outrageous that the two FCC chairman, Reagan appointees during that period that I was involved in the cellular process, both stood up and said, we don't support Democrats, but what Mark Warner did was fair by the rules and he helped bring about the new wireless industry. I am proud of my business success.

    http://www.centerforpolitics.org/program s/debates/01_gub_transcript.htm


    I hope that the Warner campaign has a response to this attack, b/c they should know that this is coming given the fact that they've now gone after Armstrong.

    I like both the Governor and Jerome so I hope they get this situation straightened out pretty quickly. I would rather they have to deal with this now than later in the primary season....

  • majority of African-American politicians are corrupt. I want to make that VERY clear. I'm just saying that many right-wingers view African-American politicians as corrupt and tend to target them when making the case that Dems are corrupt in general.

  • Well, GOP'ers have wanted to take her out for a long time. I know some of the Fox News commentators have called her shrill etc. so I can see them making a big deal about it. Also, they get to pronounce how "corrupt" black politicians are--which is a big theme for right wingers.

    Well, it's unfortunate. Waters has been outspoken on issues like Haiti that haven't gotten a lot of play in the mainstream media. Who will speak on those issues with her gone? Hopefully someone will step up to the plate to take up these issues with her gone from Congress....

  • comment on a post Going to Meet Ned Lamont on Monday over 8 years ago

    As I mentioned in a previous post, the main problem I have with Lieberman is his failure to keep Pres. Bush accountable on several fronts from the prosecution of the war in Iraq to the appointment of key officials like Brownie.

    So could you please ask Lamont what he believes  the role of Congress' oversight authority is? How does he believe members of Congress/Senators should execute their Constitutional role of providing a check on Executive power? How could Congress perform their oversight responsibility better?

    I understand Lamont has some experience in local/municipal government. He was on some type of board I think. I would also ask him how he performed his oversight function on this board. What's his experience for holding local executives accountable and responsive to "the people."

    Thanks again for providing this opportunity to us, Matt.

  • comment on a post The Risks for the Blogosphere of Taking on Lieberman over 8 years ago
    If I were Lamont's campaign manager, I would make the point to voters that Lieb. isn't fulfilling his constitutional duty to provide a check to the executive branch's power. As the ranking chairman of the govt oversight committee(that's not the right name but hopefully you get the point), he has the responsibility to make sure that the executive branch is running smoothly and that legislation is properly implemented by the agencies within the Executive Branch. Unfortunately, Lieb has not fulfilled that duty. For instance, he did not raise concerns about Brownies' lack of credentials for heading FEMA. As far as I know, I haven't heard him call for a Truman-like commission to investigate war profiteering.

    There's also his role in the Enron/accounting scandal as well.

    He may have a great voting record, but there's more to being a Congressman than voting a certain way. Oversight is just as important and perhaps may be even more important considering this administration's track record.....  

  • comment on a post Universal Health Care and Unions in 2006 over 8 years ago
    I agree that universal health care is a must and a policy platform that Democrats should pursue in 2006 but most importantly in 2008. I appreciate you mentioning 2 of the main groups that are against universal healthcare. As long as doctors in particular are against universal healthcare, I think it's going to be a hard sell to pass. We're going to need a few moderate Republicans in both the Senate and the House to cross over to our side, if we're ever going to get universal healthcare.

    With that said, I don't think that moderate Republicans would ever agree to a single payer system. That's why I support a multi-payer system that is similiar to the Swiss healthcare system. It's a system that relies on private health insurance, but the prices for medical services is highly regulated AND there's a minimum threshold for basic services. Insurance companies cannot deny coverage to anyone for pre-existing conditions. The Swiss government subsidizes the cost of healthcare and local governments own a few hospitals. The Swiss government forces everyone to buy health insurance. It's a mandate like we in the US have to buy auto insurance if we want to own/drive a car. Anyway, I would check out the Swiss system. From the little that I've heard about it, it's one of the better health systems in the world. All Swiss (100% coverage rate)are covered by the system, yet the Swiss have a great health care delivery system. I think it would be easier for Americans to adjust to the Swiss system rather than the Canadian/British system and the lobbying efforts wouldn't be as intense from doctors/insurance companies, if we adopted the Swiss system . . . . .

    Just one suggestion . . . .


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