• on a comment on Another Petition over 5 years ago

    As a woman living in a deep red state, I fully intend to write in Hillary's name on my ballot in November.  McCain's up more than 20% here, in a state that's never gone Dem, so no chance Obama even stands a chance here.

    You won't understand, but I have and still do tear up at the idea of casting a vote for Hillary for president, for a serious woman candidate who deserves my vote.  It is important to be able to vote for her.  TO do so at a convention, for show's sake, before closing the door forever on the chance that she'll be president (honestly, 8 years will be too late for her), that's something reasonable for people to want.

    If the situations were reversed, and the African-American community wanted the same opportunity, to voice their support for Obama, absolutely we'd do it.

  • And to clarify, what I mean is a mix of some ads focused on "feelings," and some focused on clear-headed policy wonkiness, not something that tries to be everything to everyone.  A mix of ads, targeted to different types of people.

  • comment on a post Is Good Messaging Another Quick Fix? over 5 years ago

    Unfortunately, I don't think there's some sort of uniform block of American thinkers that we're trying to reach.  There's no one magic key to appeal to them.  

    Personally, I'm not interested in making an emotional connection with a candidate.  I want sound policies, based on a nuanced understanding of the problems and the pros and cons of available solutions.

    Maybe some people want to have a beer with the candidate, or need to hear that, yes, he'd be distraught if his wife were murdered.  That's not me, but maybe it's someone.

    I think the "answer" is a good mix of touchy-feely message, underlaid by a sound foundation of clearly described actual policies addressing critical issues.

  • on a comment on DNCC Tuesday: Celebrating Women over 5 years ago

    I'm sure you mean well, but "women's issues" sounds like such a derogatory term, as if 50% of the population has some sort of petty special interest agenda to advance.  I mentioned Social Security, for example, which disproportionately impacts women, but is and should be a concern for this country as a whole.

    I'd also like for you to consider that suggesting that we'll be okay because we have a male president who is "receptive" to our "issues" is paternalistic and insulting.  Consider if Obama had not won the nomination, and you were suggesting to disappointed African-Americans that it was okay, that there was a white presidential candidate who was sympathetic to their "issues."  I don't want to be taken care of by the male power structure, I want women in positions of power.  I don't want to be patted on the head and told that it will be okay, that men will look out for me and my "issues," in lieu of having more women representatives in government.  

    And pointing to Michele Obama and her daughters, who are, I'm sure, fine people, is not evidence of progress in terms of gender equality in our society or in our party.  Michele Obama is not a leader, she is a supportive spouse.  Good for her, but it is nothing like having women actually IN positions of governance, instead of cheering on their governing husbands, know what I mean?

  • I agree that Ohio is statistically tied, with a swing of Obama +2 to McCain +1.

    Florida, however, is of much more concern, and I think it's wrong to say that these results are "within the margin of error."  It's gone from Obama +2 to McCain +4, a swing of 6 points.  That's significant.

    I'm not comfortable being defeatist about Florida, suggesting that it's not a necessary part of our electoral landscape.  It's a huge factor in the election, and I want to be sure we are always contending there.

  • comment on a post DNCC Tuesday: Celebrating Women over 5 years ago

    You might be interested in a current NY Times Op Ed about why most women are not so enthusiastic about "women's week" in politics in this country.  http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/26/opinio n/26faludi.html

    Some stats:

    In the current Congress, only 16% of seats are held by women.

    The U.S. ranks #69 among countries with the highest percentage of women in government. Countries that have a higher percentage of women include countries such as Tajikistan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Uganda.

    Women still earn 77 cents to the dollar vis-a-vis men's pay.

    Efforts targeting Social Security would have a disproportionate impact on women, as they are the primary beneficiaries of the current system.

    Birth control is under attack, with the Bush administration trying to classify birth control pills as a form of abortion.  Access to effective means of birth control, as well as education about reproductive health, are what allows women to compete in the workforce, to ensure that they are not trapped in violent intimate partnerships, to avoid the burdens of single parenthood, etc.

  • on a comment on No Nunn, no Kerry, nobody knows over 5 years ago

    Agreed.  And much more interested in who he'd have lined up for the Supreme Court (not that he'd be telling us now, but have some perspective on relative importance of these positions).

  • I dunno.  In the aftermath of 2004, I remember some policy organization that did polling and found that most "undecided" voters simply did not believe that the presidential candidates could make any specific impact on their personal lives.  Did not believe that access to affordable health care was a political issue, with political solutions, for example.  In part, they were very defeatist, very fatalistic - "things suck, they always will."  

    Those who made up their minds one way or the other typically had a specific issue they clung to, right or wrong, whether that be guns, gays, abortion, whatever.

    I think people do need to hear a compelling case about how we are going to change the average American's life for the better.  How our candidate offers actual solutions to the problems besetting the little guy.  In a sea of "just another politician," which is where all this personal sniping goes, it seems that some voters shrug and pull the lever for whomever their neighbor is voting for.

    There honestly are issues that are important to people.  Health care is huge.  If we had a compelling message on our side about even one issue that had broad, across-the-board appeal to the average American, and could demonstrate tangibly that we could accomplish it and life would be better under a Dem administration, we'd win.  Yes, some people will vote on who they'd like to have a beer with.  I believe that is because they have not heard a compelling case for why the politicians are different on issues in a way that is personal to the voter.

  • It's not even that he's clueless about his "own affairs."  It's that the average American hopes to own one nice house, and most can only dream about having a second vacation house. To have so many houses that you literally cannot quantify them, that is wealth and privilege so far above the level of 99.9% of Americans, it's really breathtaking.  It really is on par with Bush the Elder being astonished by the barcode scanners at the grocery store - this is a guy who has no understanding of how average Americans live or how they're struggling today.

  • on a comment on Last Chance for Gas over 5 years ago

    I don't know - I think Hillary is occupied in the VP slot heading up a massive overhaul of health care.  I think it is her primary interest, her legacy, and something that would fully occupy both her and Bill sufficiently so that they're not competing with Obama on other issues, including foreign relations.

  • You're sure this is kos?  And not Howard Dean, or enthusiastic youth who have finally been drawn into political participation?  I really think it was the people pounding the pavement, coupled with a DNC leader who promoted a 50-state strategy, who have been changing the political landscape.

  • on a comment on McCain's Mansions over 5 years ago

    Whatever "high net worth Americans" might think = "rich," the average voter most likely thinks that an annual income north of $100k = "rich."  $5 mill, seriously?  Might as well say $5 trillion, the average American is as likely to get there.  By "rich," most folks mean able to meet their needs, provide a good home for their families, pay the bills, have some leisure time.  The notion that this is peanuts to someone like McCain is a rude shock.

  • on a comment on Dem convention: Sebelius VP? over 5 years ago

    Sebelius will not win her own home state for Obama. I'm a Kansan, and it's not like we have much pull on the national scene to sway any swing states, even if we did go Dem (which is not going to happen, sorry to say).  She'd be on the ticket solely to be the female candidate in some awkward attempt to appease Hillary voters, which is insulting and will prove completely ineffectual.  Hillary voters will hold their noses and vote Obama because a Repub president is unthinkable, but tossing out a non-entity on the political scene like Sebelius, who has no hope of bringing home her own state or her geographic region, is just salt in the wound.

  • on a comment on ABC: Edwards admits affair! over 5 years ago

    I think you're overlooking the fact that extramarital affairs are rarely about sexual needs.  They're about psychological ones.  An adult in his 40s and 50s can abstain from sex during his wife's illness.  

    And, yes, politicians are precisely the kind of people who need to feel powerful, adored, appreciated, etc., and whose pathological need for that sort of approval, validation, and power leads them to having affairs. Affairs by politicians may be common, but they are absolutely indicative of character issues that should concern us - it's an open question whether that's the nature of the beast, whether every politician is so desperate for approval that he/she would risk not only his/her marriage, not only his/her political future, but the political future of his/her party and of all the individuals it seeks to represent.

  • on a comment on ABC: Edwards admits affair! over 5 years ago

    I feel bad just saying this, but here it is - Obama is another charismatic, attractive young man, and a lawyer to boot.  Even if they're untrue, allegations that he's got a bimbo  in the closet somewhere may just sound plausible. Why? (A) The media and right-leaners accept as gospel truth that Democrats can't keep it in their pants, even if Repubs are just as bad, because the only president ever to be almost-impeached because of adultery was a Dem.  And Kennedy was, too.  (B) "We don't know that much about Obama" is a popular meme, seems to have traction, and is the justification for a lot of Bill O'Reilly-type crap about "some people say" that there's an Obama bimbo out there.

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