Well, I certainly won't be joining PUMA, although I could see had I a chance to speak with Nancy Pelosi or Howard Dean directly making that comment to them. I can't vote for McCain either, but nor am I yet sure I can vote for Obama (as much as I want to, I can't yet say in good conscience that I can, and am currently leaning toward writing in Hillary's name. But I don't believe that movement will have any chance of actually making her President...so I'm really struggling as I've never struggled before. :-( )
Well, actually, that's not quite right--according to the Senate's own website (source: http://www.senate.gov/~foreign/ or http://www.senate.gov/general/committee_
m#SSFR01 ), Joe Biden is the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and Richard Lugar is the Ranking Member (although John Kerry does serve on the committee). And from http://www.senate.gov/general/common/gen
eric/about_committees.htm , regarding "About the Senate Committee System": "Subcommittees handle specific areas of the committee's work... The chair primarily controls a committee's business... Committees select a small percentage (of bills and resolutions) for consideration, and those not addressed often receive no further action... The bills that committees report help to set the Senate's agenda." (emphasis is mine) It's also perhaps interesting to note that Joe Biden was also first the Chairman of the Subcommittee on European Affairs, and it was his work on that subcommittee that undoubtedly assisted him in gaining traction as a Senator.
For some interesting insight on both Biden and Obama, you might wish to read this salon.com article from December '07: http://www.salon.com/opinion/conason/200
7/12/29/obama_europe/ . Further, again from the Senate's own website at http://www.senate.gov/~foreign/jurisdict
"SUBCOMMITTEE ON EUROPEAN AFFAIRS, Barack Obama, Chairman, Jim DeMint, Ranking Member
The subcommittee deals with all matters concerning U.S. relations with the countries on the continent of Europe (except the states of Central Asia that are within the jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs), and with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. ...are also the responsibility of this subcommittee. ..."
So Barack's subcommittee does definitely have responsibility for oversight of NATO and European Affairs, and could be doing "something" about the situation in Afghanistan, but where's Barack been? Oh yeah, that's right, he's too busy "talking about" what he'll do when he's President instead of doing something about it now. You may wish to conveniently call that a talking point, but everything I have seen about the matter says otherwise.
Yeah, I guess we shouldn't hold our breath waiting to hear that! Atlhough I'd settle for just Chris Matthews! (And to follow your example, as my Dad always says: If frogs had wings, they wouldn't bump their asses on the ground--or something like that. :-) )
The only thing I'd add is that even for those Clinton supporters who are female--it still is often nothing at all about "disappointment" or "anger" over Clinton herself, but rather legitimate concerns about Obama. Many of the reasons you site are why I just reregistered as Independent after being a lifelong registered Democrat (for 25 years)--that was in direct protest to the despicable actions taken by the DNC, the Rules & Bylaws Committee, and many of the Democratic leaders you cited in your diary. But that does not mean I will not continue to fight for Democratic values and candidates, as long as they prove their worth of my vote (I've always voted for the person not the party--so I have voted for a few non-Democrats in my time, but never when it came to President). I am still hoping Barack will be able to do that.
Then Clinton needed it and it became super important.
THe reason some Obama supporters are bitter at the Clinton supporters is that we think Clinton was going for dirty tricks. Trying to change the rules after the fact. That doesn't sit well with us, either."
So I suppose you're now bitter that Obama said all along the General Election should be run with the Public Financing method, and actively pushed all other candidates to agree to the same, but then realized he could benefit from all the funds he'd been able to raise and needed all those dollars, and therefore became super important to change his stance...so I suppose his "changing the rules after the fact doesn't sit well with you" either?! I guess it's acceptable that "it's all about (Obama) and (his money)."
Thanks for drawing attention to this! I only hope the MSM commentators who so gleefully attacked her for only staying in it to get her own loans back will finally admit they were wrong! (Not that I expect that, of course, but can't blame a girl for hoping!)
While it's probably true that some Hillary supporters will never vote for Barack, I am one Hillary supporter who is trying to find any glimmer of hope to put my fears about a Barack presidency to rest and to be able to vote confidently for him. In my mind, there are two specific things he could do that would ensure my vote. One is putting Hillary on the ticket--which would begrudgingly get my vote even though I believe her strengths and talent would be mostly wasted as VP (but it would at least give me assurance that he has somebody I trust in there helping to guide him instead of whom I fear is guiding him currently). The second thing he could do, that only he has the power to do: I'd love to see him hold even a single hearing of his Senate Subcommittee and try to deal with the European lack of support that NATO has made so evident regarding Afghanistan--especially as US deaths in Afghanistan outnumbered the deaths in Iraq this last month, but US deaths in Afghanistan have been increasing all throughout '07 and '08 while he's held that Chairmanship!
To better explain: my very real concern is that by Obama's complete lack of action with respect to what I feel is a rather critical matter (and he seems to agree as far as Afghanistan is concerned) with respect to foreign and security affairs and rather naïve approach to policies that his campaign has readily admitted he somewhat created on the fly due to misspeaking in an early debate and then deciding to go with it with respect to meeting of foes, that he could very well make things even worse for our country. He has spoken out so frequently about the problems in Afghanistan and what "he will do when he's President" to fix that situation. But the simple fact is he's been a position to do something about that ever since January 2007--and he's chosen to do absolutely nothing about it. Now I realize he alone would not have had the power to fix it entirely--but he is in a key position to have lent support to NATO as they've tried to bring attention to the problems of European countries refusing to fight in southern Afghanistan, thereby leaving the US to foot a proportionally larger share of that fighting (and suffer the toll of that fighting). If he believes so strongly in rectifying Afghanistan, why hasn't he done anything about it when he was in a better position than most to do something about it? (And his sudden about-face on the General Election campaign funding just adds to my concerns that his actions too often have not supported his words.) So that is what he could do to win my vote--he could hold a meeting of his subcommittee that has responsibility for oversight of NATO and Europe as it relates to Afghanistan.
As I noted elsewhere previously, it has been largely domestic issues that have been front and center of my political leanings. Yes, Roe v. Wade is a huge issue in this election--and those rights are something that have always been an important election point for me and seem critically important at this precarious time in our nation's history. BUT it is not the only issue. But it and other social issues aside, I found myself going through a curious transition at the beginning of this Primary Season, because of the feelings that have been building within me throughout our current President's inept handling of the Presidency. And...
For the first time, I've realized that I truly fear for the future of our country--on many fronts and many levels, but including for mere survival due to the enemies we've made around the world.
For the first time, I've been made to feel embarrassed and ashamed to be American (and find myself more often than not emphasizing to foreign friends and acquaintances that I didn't vote for Bush and feeling the need to defend myself).
For the first time, I've found myself extremely relieved just to get to this election season as I truly feared whether we would survive Bush's Presidency.
So while domestic and social issues had always been my driving force and continue to be critically important to me, my focus for the first time has become an emphasis on protecting our country from the forces of evil that do exist around the world and rebuilding our reputation among the world. In my mind as I've tormented myself through this election season and spent far too many hours I really didn't have researching various angles and issues, I realized that, not to sound extremist but, for me it comes down to this basic premise:
--it won't matter if we have marriage equality if we get blown off the face of the earth,
--it won't matter if we have abortion rights if we get blown off the face of the earth,
--it won't matter if I/we all have health care (which I'm not fortunate enough to have myself at the moment for extenuating circumstances that are beyond the scope of this post),
--it won't matter what the poverty levels here are if we get blown off the face of the earth,
--it won't matter if our soldiers come home from Iraq and Afghanistan if we get blown off the face of the earth,
--it won't matter...I could continue this list to name all the other key domestic and foreign issues that are important to me and so many others, but I think you get my point.
Now I've not become irrationally afraid--however, any fear at all of this nature is not something we in the great US of A are accustomed to feeling, and it was somewhat of a shocker to me as I found these feelings growing within me over these last several years. We used to be the great super power of the world--however, Bush has greatly damaged that reputation, and I do believe it will take a lot of work to try to reestablish ourselves in that sense whatsoever. And I just haven't been at all convinced that Barack is the right person to lead this effort--as I've stated, I'm afraid he could do even more damage. So my concern is for my country more than for the Democratic Party as it relates to choosing our next President. (And I am trying very hard not to let my utmost disgust with the DNC and the Rules & ByLaws Committee and certain leaders of this party sway my vote away from Barack--but he's still got to prove himself worthy of my vote.) So rather lengthy, I realize, but that's something he could do to earn my vote.
I would have mojo'd your comment for pointing out the simple fact of the different budgets...and that "It would just look like Obama's trying to spin the issue away" but I can't agree that "he's handled it perfectly already." I believe everybody realizes that his statements are exactly the type of spin you cited for being the reason he shouldn't say anything else. (But of course, I realize his die-hard supporters won't publicly admit to seeing it that way...and I mean that only generally speaking, not that I'm saying you're in that camp, because I can't tell from this limited post that you're in that category.) Personally, his sticking with the public financing method he so adamantly fought for up front could have done a lot to help bring this Clinton supporter on board; but I guess he's really not all that different a politician after all. I guess I'll have to keep looking for other qualities that warrant my support. (Personally, I'd love to see him hold even a single hearing of his Senate Subcommittee and try to deal with the European lack of support that NATO has made so evident regarding Afghanistan as US deaths in Afghanistan outnumbered the deaths in Iraq this last month! But I guess he's still too busy with other things to worry about that!)
Exactly--there is no way he is going to win this argument. What I've not seen anyone mention in this or the one other diary I found on this issue last night is noting how hypocritical this action is--especially considering he led the fight up front (frequently and persistently) to insist the General Election be funded soley from the public financing fund.
What is any different about this than Hillary fighting to make the votes of FL and MI count? He was very quick to point out that (counting FL and MI) would be changing the rules partway through, and that the only reason Hillary was fighting for those states was that she needed those votes--and Obama's supporters were only too happy to join him in calling Hillary a hypocrite (never mind the fact that they never should have had their votes taken away in the first place, in my opinion). Clearly the only reason he's now refusing the financing method he so adamantly fought for initially is that NOW he realizes because he's been able to raise so many funds, it's not politically expedient for him to limit himself to the Public Financing Funds. But I guess it's okay for him to change the rules as long as it's beneficial for him? As someone who's still trying to get on board the Obama train, I can't say this helps--in fact quite the opposite.
Well, I think he'd definitely be able to help Obama in those wealthier more suburban counties around Philly that Obama wasn't able to get in the Primaries. I see what you mean about not being too PC, but I guess you're also correct in that whether it would help or hurt would depend on the specifics.
I'll join you on that. When I was a political blogging newbie and just finding this site, it was alegre's name that first jumped out to me as someone whose diaries I knew I could look for and always find something new about Hillary that I hadn't yet realized. She helped grow my support for Hillary by showing how much I hadn't yet realized when I first started researching the candidates. Over time, some other names started sticking out to me as well, but as somebody upstream mentioned, alegre's name will be one of those I recall when I think back on this primary season.
Of course, we'll not know for sure until we know, but as someone who lives just outside PA's capital, I can tell you than Ed Rendell has been asked many times on our local news about VP. He's indicated two things consistently: (1) he wouldn't want it, (2) he feels he'd be more of a liability than a benefit. By that, I mean he readily acknowledges he's not always so politically correct, and he often catches hell for his very blunt off-the-cuff statements. Also, although I'm a supporter of his (he came through and spoke/met with our small Business Association of Gays and Lesbians when first running for Governor [maybe only 30 members present that night] and garnered a lot of support there), he's not universally liked in PA. His main popularity is in the Philly region where he came from, but he's not nearly as popular or well-liked in the Harrisburg or more rural areas of PA where Barack really needs to build his support levels.
True--I didn't try to quantify the "asses," and perhaps bashing was too strong a word. But I did recognize quite a few Obama supporters giving her compliments, and mojo'd a few who did it sincerely and well!
Well I'm sorry too to see the Clinton bashing still going on, but join in giving kudos to Hillary. I feel she gave a phenomenal speech, she could not have been clearer in throwing her support behind Barack, including urging her supporters not to dwell on "what if" and "if only" but instead to look forward and do what we can to ensure Barack Obama gets into the White House come January. I believe she made many very strong points that should be recognized for what they are and respected for their clarity. She once again was full of grace and strength in addressing what undoubtedly was a very difficult and emotional time for her. I still believe she will some day be our first female president--I guess hopefully in 8 years following 8 years of a Barack presidency--and that she will continue making history. Cheers to Hillary!