Friday, June 30, 2006

GOP Leaning Rasmussen shows Amy in the Lead

Rasmussen continues to show favorable numbers for the firm and committed Amy Klobuchar:
With only 7% of voters undecided, DFL county attorney Amy Klobuchar continues to hold a narrow edge over Republican Representative Mark Kennedy in the race to succeed Senator Mark Dayton (D), who is retiring after a single term.

The two have been near-even throughout most of the election year. Last month, Klobuchar led 45% to 43%. The competitive and well-funded contest is being watched closely by national officials of both parties.
What is more revealing is the favorable/unfavorable numbers:
Klobuchar is viewed favorably by 57% of likely voters, unfavorably by 29%; 14% are "not sure" what to think of her. Kennedy is viewed favorably by 46%, unfavorably by 41%, with 12% "not sure."
Amy's message and firm stance on issues important to Minnesotans continues to resonate with the electorate. Kennedy's inability to shake the monkey of his back continues to be a serious detriment to his chances. Kennedy's unfavorables and minimal 'very' favorables show that buyers remorse is beginning to set in and the anointing of his candidacy so early will play out as a grave mistake by the state's GOP.

Watch as Amy's opponents continue to work together in attack mode as they slowly realize it is her message that is being embraced by the voters of Minnesota. They've already lost the race on the issues, so slinging mud is all they have left!


Much ado about nothing

The bullying has began from Amy's opponents. Seems one of them snuck recording devices into the Humphrey Institute eventhough it was made pretty clear that only authorized devices were allowed. They are now crying foul when they were challenged by staffers at the event. I commend the Klobuchar campaign for being committed to having an honest debate, and not allow for their words to be pulled out of context, misrepresented and set up for a smear boating.

What none of the detractors bother to mention is there IS audio of Amy's speech AND the Q&A afterwards (thanks Polinaut and MPR). But that is not the impression you get when you read their attacks. I expected as much from Kennedy's Attack Machine, but not from within. In fact, we were assured by Amy's primary oponent that he wouldn't go negative. But then again, he also said he would abide by the endorsement and we all know how that turned out. I'd like to remind them of Sen. Obama's thoughtful and insightful words when I visited with him a few months back.
I would hope that in a Democratic primary we make sure that we always assume good faith on the part of our opponents.
I guess I'd like to follow up on that response now and ask "What happens when the opponent no longer shows good faith?"

When campaigns have to make stuff up and try to force the fallacies onto the public plate, you really have to questions their desire to represent Minnesotans and their commitment to a better future for our state!


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Ron Carey's #1 Fan - MNPublius!

From the boys themselves:
I just wanted to send out an emphatic thank you to Minnesota GOP Chairman Ron Carey for taking a modest blog post and getting it into the mainstream media! I mean, the mentions in Daily Kos, The Hotline, Political Wire, The New Republic, Reedit, CQ Politics, City Pages, and tons of blogs were great, but without your brash defensive Press Release we would have never cracked into the MSM.
There more, so go read it.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Congrats to MNPublius; A Kos Launch

Kos himself picked up on JD's MNPublius post regarding the scrubbing of the Mark Kennedy website. This excellent post details a whitewash of most Bush references. Examples include:
Trade Bush for some children [they are less of a political liability with this war going on...]
Bills that were once signed into law by President Bush now simply 'become law'.
or actually stating he is against the President
Successfully worked to repeal the Bush Administration's steel tariffs, which killed jobs and hurt local manufacturers.
It must be nice to be noticed!


Monday, June 26, 2006

MNGOP - You Can't Trust Sen. Norm Coleman

The MN GOP Chair states:
Republicans, who have criticized Hatch as a political opportunist for his history of challenging his own party's endorsed candidates, said Dutcher's party switch makes her an appropriate fit. "There is no way that Minnesotans can trust them," GOP Chairman Ron Carey said in a prepared statement.
Is Carey impying that US Senator Norm Coleman can't be trusted?!? That is a pretty powerful accusation against one of their own!!

Just sayin' . . .


No Respect!

I shook my head as I read this in this morning's PiPress:
The choice was no longer a surprise by the time more than 100 campaign supporters crowded onto Hatch's lawn. Twin Cities media reported the rumored choice over the weekend, and it had been a source of speculation since Hatch won the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party endorsement at its convention two weeks ago.
The BlogoSphere was speculating, and all but announcing Dutcher's candidacy BEFORE the Convention. It was the mainstream Media that was dragging their tail.

The local BlogoSphere will continue to be several steps ahead of the local media this election season. And I don;t see that changing anytime soon.


Sunday, June 25, 2006

Dutcher Confirmed, FINALLY!

I have been posting for several weeks that Judi Dutcher will be the Ying to Mike Hatch's Yang. It has been officially confirmed on the Hatch for Governor website, today:
I promised to recruit a lieutenant governor who would make an excellent governor, and with Judi Dutcher, I accomplished this task. Judi is a big plus for the campaign. She won two statewide elections as Auditor and earned kudos from local government and state officials for her energy, wit, and courage. She was one of the first public officials to challenge the extreme elements that have taken control of the Republican Party, and she eventually had to leave the party to join the Democrats. She was warmly embraced by the Democrats and was supported by a broad and deep network of people in her 2002 gubernatorial bid. Over the past four years, she has served as Chief Executive Officer of the Minnesota Community Foundation, a large philanthropic institution that serves Greater Minnesota. As CEO, Judi witnessed the impact of the Governor's budget cuts to rural communities. For instance, her foundation purchased a fire truck for Fairmont because the Governor's cuts gutted the city's public safety budget. In other communities, the foundation helped with infrastructure items as basic as sidewalks because of the Pawlenty cuts.

We balance the ticket quite well. I am from Greater Minnesota, and Judi is from the metropolitan area. We both received the benefits of a strong Minnesota educational system, and we will fulfill the role of every administration, except the current one, in acting as a guardian for the next generation.
Special kudos go out to Waffle Tushie who was the first, I believe, to post the first serious claim of Judi as Hatch's running mate.


Friday, June 23, 2006

Dayton, Coleman agree on Iraq!

And I couldn't have said it better:
"The reality is that until our military commanders in Iraq tell us that they believe that it's in our national security interests and the security of our troops' interests to begin withdrawing troops, I think it's premature for the United States Senate to begin initiating that action, even rhetorically," said Dayton, who has long opposed the war.

Coleman agreed "wholeheartedly" with Dayton, saying a timeline shouldn't be established on the Senate floor.

"We want American troops to be out of the center of action in Iraq as soon as possible. But those decisions have to be made by commanders on the ground," he said.
At this point it doesn't matter how we got there. We have an obligation to finish what we started. Both our Senators are on the same page, which is quite refreshing actually!


Thursday, June 22, 2006

Good News, Bad News - Polling Edition

WSJ/Zogby has released (click on Minnesota) their latest number. Many, including myself, are still not convinced at the reliability of interactive polling. But regardless of the methodology, any poll is still just a picture in time, and the only 'time' that counts is the poll taken on election day.

DFL Endorsed gubernatorial candidate Mike Hatch had been enjoying a slight lead on the sitting Governor, but the latest number show Tpaw in much better shape.

45.0 Gov. Pawlenty
39.8 AG Mike Hatch
(Independent candidate Peter Hutchinson is polling in the 5.5 - 7.5 range)

Hatch's number is almost a 10 point drop from his high in October. Now that the election season is heating up, expect things to tighten once again. And when Hatch announces Dutcher on Sunday, that just may change the whole complexion of the race.

In the senate race, Klobuchar continues to hold a lead, albeit not insurmountable.

48.6 Klobuchar
41.2 Kennedy

Greenberg Quinlan number from 4/20-26 show a similar spread

50 Klobuchar
42 Kennedy

Nothing is decided yet, and there is a long Summer ahead, followd by a brutal fall!


Happy Anniversary, Baby!

To the lovely Mrs. Flash. Thank you for 6 wonderful years. I can't begin to tell you how lucky I am.

Thanks for putting up with me *laughing*


YOUR Hubby!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Future Speaker?

MINvolved on the new House Minority Leader:
1) Margaret Anderson Kelliher became DFL House Minority Leader yesterday, following Matt Entenza’s DFL endorsement for Attorney General. For the time being, this means almost nothing - but if the DFL takes back the House this year she will be the frontrunner for the Speaker position.
Read the other 9.


Monday, June 19, 2006

Shot on Hiatus

Mitch is on vacation, but will be checking in periodically. In the meantime, one of the best Snark bloggers in the state will be Blog sitting. And he wasted no time cracking his first one-liner of the week.
I will try to live up to the same high standards that has catapulted Mitch to his status as one of the brightest stars of the center-right blog constellation.
Mitch?!?, Center/Right . . . that would make Bush a Liberal. Good one LF!!

Seriously, if you can read past his politics, the Learned one can be quite entertaining!


Saturday, June 17, 2006

Stinging the 'B'

Mitch mentioned the online Pedo stings that are occasionally broadcast on prime time news magazine. However, it doesn't require TV to run them, various law enforcement agencies use the practice to nab the bad guys. And sometimes they catch themselves a big one:
In Internet and phone chats with someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl, a Department of Homeland Security press aide talked about underage sex, boasted about his job and called President Bush a "liar," according to transcripts released by prosecutors.

Brian Doyle, 56, of Silver Spring, Md., acknowledged his chat room pal _ "Ashlynne" _ could be a police officer "trapping" him, according to about 400 pages of records released this week. Undercover Polk County sheriff's detectives posed as the girl.
This two bit loser will be dragged through the system and hopefully get what he deserves. But the sidebar is all the wonderfully nice things he said about his boss, all captured by law enforcement in the transcript:
The transcripts also quote Doyle as saying he met Bush, adding, "nice guy but not a good president ... he is not very bright and it is evident ... bush is a liar ... there were NO weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. total lie to go to war."
What a classy guy, huh!


Friday, June 16, 2006

Thursday, June 15, 2006


Who says you have to knock on doors personally(CNN):
GRAND FORKS, North Dakota (AP) -- While Maj. Mike McNamara was in Iraq, his family handled much of his city council campaign for him: They handed out fliers, held a campaign rally and put up signs around town.

Meanwhile, he answered voters' questions from Falluja by e-mail.

The strategy paid off this week when the Marine reservist won a seat on the Grand Forks City Council. McNamara, 48, beat four other candidates with 49 percent of the vote in the city's second ward, despite serving thousands of miles away.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Bush Visits Baghdad

Some may try to spin the President's trip to Iraq in a negative way. I will not be one of them. I was elated to hear of his surprise visit to Baghdad, his desire to boost morale of our soldiers serving in thi war, and his desire to meet personally with the new prime minister.

It took guts, and I won't be a part of any negative spin on this. President Bush is the Commander in Chief, and commanders visit their troops when an opportunity presents it self.

Good show, Mr. President.


Fired Up - Rally for Change

I was able to attend the Rally for Change last evening. I was half expecting a partisan bash session knowing what lies ahead in this election season. I couldn't have been more wrong. Each and every candidate proposed a thoughtful, positive, and sincere vision for the future. Each endorsee expressed their commitment to returning Minnesota to the leadership position it once enjoyed.

There is a commitment by this highly qualified, respectful, and determined slate to present to the Minnesota electorate a no nonsense approach to what they will do once they take office. At some point I will have an opportunity to sit down with each of these candidates and give them a chance to present their vision to my readers. Look for that in the coming weeks.

I am incredibly swamped today, but I will have more over the course of the next few days as I transition from a full time educator to a Summer respite. I will be putting in plenty of hours over the Summer, but will have more then enough time to follow this campaign season as it heats up with the Summer sun!


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Rally For Change

The last stop on the DFL slate's state tour will be a Rally for Change in St. Paul, MN. I plan on stopping by to see what it is all about. Anyone else interested?!?
Who: Minnesota DFL Chair Brian Melendez, Gubernatorial candidate Mike Hatch, U.S. Senate candidate Amy Klobuchar, Attorney General candidate Matt Entenza, Secretary of State candidate Mark Ritchie and State Auditor candidate Rebecca Otto

When: 6pm Tuesday, June 13

Where: Carpenter’s Union Hall; 700 Olive Street, St. Paul

Rove Spared

CNN reports:
White House senior adviser Karl Rove has been told by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald that he will not be charged in the CIA leak case, according to Robert Luskin, Rove's lawyer.
Mild surprise. Anyone who has been following this case knows that Rove was knee deep in this mess. Maybe now that he is no longer under suspicion, he can drop the old "We won't comment on an ongoing investigation'. Oooops, guess not!
"In deference to the pending case, we will not make any further public statements about the subject matter of the investigation," Luskin said in a written statement Tuesday. "We believe that the special counsel's decision should put an end to the baseless speculation about Mr. Rove's conduct."
So Rove is no longer under investigation, but as long as the investigation itself continues, they will keep their lips zipped. But not tight enough to claim full exoneration for what they term as 'baseless speculation'.

Do they really live in their own world? Are they that out of touch?

Rhetorical questions, the both of 'em!


MNPublius Endorses Hatch

Zack shares:
MN Publius proudly endorses Attorney General Mike Hatch over St. Senator Becky Lourey in the primary for the DFL nomination for Governor. While we recognize that this would have been far more significant coming before the convention, we wanted to be clear where our loyalties lie as we move into primary season.
Be sure to read it all.


Sunday, June 11, 2006

Ritchie Endorsed for SoS

via Power LiberalAfter Ritchie grabbed 57% on the first ballot, Sande concedes and reiterates his pledge to abide by the endorsement.

The DFL slate is set . . . . by the grassroots of the party, as it should be.


DFL Press Release:
Today, delegates of the Minnesota DFL Party endorsed Mark Ritchie to run against Republican incumbent Mary Kiffmeyer in the race for Minnesota Secretary of State.

“Mark Ritchie has run a spectacular campaign that has already built a strong base of statewide support. He is an experienced and capable candidate who has worked tirelessly to stop Mary Kiffmeyer’s abuses of her position,” Minnesota DFL Chair Brian Melendez said.

Mark Ritchie worked for Governor Perpich in the Department of Agriculture, working on trade policy and the farm crisis. He created the League of Rural Voters ten years ago to increase voter registration and civic participation in rural communities. He created a non-partisan voter registration campaign, where over 1,000 groups registered over 5 million new voters nationwide – despite obstacles by the Minnesota Secretary of State Mary Kiffmeyer.

“Minnesota is fortunate to have Mark Ritchie as a candidate for Secretary of State,” Minnesota DFL Chair Brian Melendez said. “He’s a strong and experienced leader with the ability to bring back fairness and justice back to the voting system.”

DFL endorses Rebecca Otto State Auditor

From DFL Press Release:
The Minnesota DFL Party today endorsed former state representative Rebecca Otto for State Auditor. Minnesota DFL Chair Brian Melendez released the following statement:

“Rebecca Otto is a dedicated public servant with an unflinching commitment to accuracy. As a state representative, she proved herself to be a capable and talented professional. We are confident that she will impress Minnesotans just as much with these qualities as she continues her campaign for State Auditor.

“The fact that Rebecca Otto has already been doing the job better than the current state auditor exemplifies her dedication. We look forward to her victory in November.”

DFL endorses Matt Entenza for AG

From a DFL Press Release:
The Minnesota DFL Party endorsed Minnesota House Minority Leader Matt Entenza today for Attorney General. Minnesota DFL Chair Brian Melendez released the following statement:

“As a former assistant attorney general, criminal prosecutor and state representative, Matt Entenza is the right person to become the state’s next chief legal officer.

“Minnesotans need an experienced prosecutor who can get right to work and who does not need on-the-job training. Matt Entenza will continue the proud tradition of Minnesota attorneys general making the state safe and secure.”

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Hatch Endorsed

Kelley taking the floor to concede.

Kelley is very emotional. He ran an honorable and positive campaign. I wish him well.

Motion to endorse Hatch by Acclimation, PASSED!

Soon Hatch will take the stage for his acceptance speech, balloon drop and maybe, possible, we get to meet his running mate, Judi Dutcher!


7th Ballot

Another attempt to have a Q & A voted down. It was clear that the Kelley camp was pushing this and the Hatch folks were against it.

We are awaiting the results of the 7th ballot, they will be posted here:

1291, 774 to endorse

Hatch 714.5 55.3%
Kelley 559.5 43.3

One more time?!?


Even more Hatch signs, and not a heck of a lot of real active Kelley campaigning going on. I think they just had the wind taken out of their sails. About 60 more votes and it's Hatch's

6th Ballot-Updated

51 - 47 - 2 Hatch. Official numbers soon.

1296.5 total ballots, 778 needed for endorsement

Hatch 665 51.3%
Kelley 606.5 46.8%
N/Endorse 24 1.9%


Q&A being requested, but fails on voice vote. Hatch needs to get some podium time if he is going to officially announce Dutcher as his LG. But it looked like it was the Hatch folks waving thumbs down on the Q and A. Hmmmmmm.

Lots more Hatch signs on the floor. The movement to Hatch, and the build-up of more labor support by him, just may be enough to move the delegation. But unless something huge happens, alla a Dutcher announcement, there will be a few more ballots yet.

5th Ballot

1298 Total ballots

Hatch 646 49.8%
Kelley 609 46.9%
No Endorsement 42.5 3.3%

Kelley surge picking up the AntiHatch contingent. Floor is in a flurry compared to the other ballots. Kelley's folks are re-energized for sure.



A Lit piece on Hatch letterhead is being circulated in blogger row. Seems that they are considering this a nasty hit on Kelley from Hatch.

I am not so sure. If a candidate wants to clarify their opponent's position, so be it. The document points to union conflicts, his standing within the DLC and potential budget snipping.

Regardless of how I have interpreted this move, blogger row is not happy with the Hatch Camp. If the delegates interpret the move as poor form, we just may see this endorsement process moving towards deadlock.


UPDATE: A variety of pieces have now been posted on Power Liberal from both sides. Seems that the sentiment on blogger row has settled back down

4th Ballot

1294.5 Total ballots

Hatch 580.5 44.8%
Kelley 429 33.1%
Lourey 282.5 21.8%

Lourey delegates, where will they go . . . . home. And alternates will be upgraded. That pool is pretty unpredictable.


Lourey Withdraws . . .

. . . from endorsement process.

Stump speech snippets, kind words for all candidates, still talking about "When I'm Governor". So it is clear she is persuing the primary route.


Hatch's LG

Although it appeared that a Hatch/Lourey ticket may have been an option, it is highly unlikely at this point. With that in mind, Mike Hatch will name Judi Dutcher as his running mate. Doubtful, but still possible, today. But when he is endorsed, they will make it official.


Lourey is now coming to the floor prior to the announcment of the 4th ballot

3rd Ballot Results


1. Mike Hatch: 563 or 43.3%

2. Steve Kelley: 385.5 or 29.6%

3. Becky Lourey: 349.5 or 26.9%

Second Ballot Analysis

Movement towards Hatch was predictable as there was chatter there were Hatch delegates parked in the Lourey Camp. This may provide for the realization of my earlier speculation of a Hatch/Lourey Unity ticket. This ticket would resolve the contested primary issue, rally moderates and Liberals alike, and allow for money to be spent on winning the Governor's seat, not an endorsement in September.

Should the Hatch and Lourey camps hold firm on their desire to meet again in a primary, I am firm in my belief that Judi Dutcher will be officially announced as Hatch's LG running mate before today's balloting is complete.


Live in Rochester

Finally got here. They were just finsihing the roll call. Looks like Hatch is at 40+% with Lourey knocking on his door. Kelley a dissapointing 3rd.

MDE's numbers:
1. Mike Hatch:510.5 or 43%

2. Becky Lourey: 409 or 34.7%

3. Steve Kelley: 370.5 or 31.5%

4. Ole Savior: 1 or 1.17%
I'll adjust these when they announce official results.


1. Mike Hatch: 512.5 or 39.4%

2. Becky Lourey: 403.5 or 31.%

3. Steve Kelley: 382.5 or 29.4%

4. Ole Savior: 1 or 1.17%



1. Mike Hatch: 543 or 41.6%

2. Steve Kelley: 382.5 or 29.3%

3. Becky Lourey: 379 or 29%

Friday, June 09, 2006

Amy's Endorsed!

via MNPublius:

78.0% Amy Klobuchar: 967 votes
20.4% No Endorsement: 252 votes
03.5% Charley Underwoord 3.5 votes
00.2% Phil Ratay 2.5 votes
00.7% spoiled ballots - 9

From this day forward, there is Amy Klobuchar, and the Pro-Kennedy forces. I'll put my money on Amy!


DFL State Convention - Bloggers' Row

The following bloggers will be live blogging the convention this weekend. Be sure to visit them for the variety of persectives they will offer:

From the Left:

Northern Debater
Power Liberals
DFL Senate
MN Publius

and the Right

MN Democrats Exposed

I'll continue to build this list as I discover others.

Really thought there would be more from the Right, as the DFL invited all and excluded no one.


UPDATE: MPR has a LIVE FEED from the podium.

Crystal Ball - DFL Convention Edition

The Convention will endorse, Amy Klobuchar, Rebecca Otto, Mark Ritchie, and Matt Entenza. No real surprises there. The Governor's race is a whole different story.

Going in, everyone agrees that Hatch is the front runner, but front runners don't automatically get the nod. Hatch has said he would not commit to abiding by the endorsement process. I don't believe this necessarily means he will run in the primary, however. I believe there is a chance that Hatch, himself, may drop out and decide to remain as Attorney General. If the early endorsement ballots don't show him with strong enough support to fend off the anti-Hatch contingent, this is a scenario that may begin to gain some traction.

The anti-Hatch candidates continue to bicker over who has most of the remaining delegates, but that is moot. One of the two, after a few ballots, will have to decide who to throw their support to, and/or withdraw from the process. Kelley is the only candidate that has pledged to abide. Lourey has made it clear she is in this till the end.

I spoke at length with Becky at the DL event she attended. She feels she made a grave miscalculation be agreeing to abide in 2002, and will not make that same mistake again. She is convinced, based on their internal polling at the time, that she would have won the primary, and the general election. I appreciate her commitment and determination, but am not sure I agree with her polling, or prognostication. There is no way any candidate who is committed to winning will show their true hand. I don't give too much credence to those who rule out specific campaign strategies, be it abiding, or wheeling and dealing on convention day.

There is a reason Mike Hatch is laying low, and why he has decided not to select a running mate going into the convention. This is purely speculation on my part, and I have no information from anyone that even suggests this is what he is thinking. But a Hatch/Lourey ticket would be the most competitive slate the DFL could put up against the MNGOP Juggernaut. A unity ticket like this would resolve a big chunk of those who have concerns about Hatch. This would also resolve the contested primary issue and the big bucks that Hatch has fermenting in his coffers can be put to use to defend themselves from the smear of the Right, while helping DFL candidates all the way down the ticket. I sincerely hope that this option is on the table, for it would be the most positive move that could come out of what may be a very contentious convention environment.

If the Unity ticket does not come to fruition, there is only one other possible LG option that could possible serve the same purpose, and that is Judi Dutcher. I know she has said she won't do it, but Edwards refused VP overtures right up until the last moment, and he changed his mind. As for the issues from 2002 . . . . if Sullivan and Pawlenty could kiss and make-up after their 2002 political fisticuffs, I have no doubt that Mike and Judi have already reconciled from their battle. A week in politics is a lifetime, 4 years is an eternity.

I'm hoping to make an appearance in Rochester sometime late Saturday morning. Knowing my luck, all the fireworks will be over, and the endorsement decided, before I even arrive.


Thursday, June 08, 2006

Got 'Em

The slime known as al Zarqawi is nothing more then a smear in the desert:
Terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the coalition's most wanted man in Iraq, was killed in an airstrike near Baquba, jubilant U.S. and Iraqi authorities announced Thursday.

Al-Zarqawi's death gives Iraq a chance to "turn the tide" in the fight against the nation's insurgency, President Bush said at the White House.
The President is spot on, here. The sophisticated attack that has now decapitated the Al Qaeda resurgency just may be the turning point we need to get Iraq on a stable course. Let's hope and pray that this is the case!


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Exclusion -vs- Inclusion

In Sue Jeffers' press release announcing her intention to challenge Gov. Pawlenty in the primary, there is some interesting tidbits related to how the exclusionary party ran their convention.

Turns out she WAS able to get a hold of delegate lists, just not through normal channels:
The Committee's questioning of Sue Jeffers also focused on where she had obtained access to the Republican delegates' list. "You mean the four copies I've received?" Jeffers asked the stunned committee. Jeffers refused to name names.
They then call her 'unqualified:
In the end, the committee decided (not unexpectedly) not to find Jeffers, "qualified." Qualified is a new language twist in the convention endorsement rules this year.

Jeffers still maintains she is a qualified candidate, first and foremost by being a citizen of Minnesota. "Our Founding Fathers had a vision of a citizen-legislature - ordinary folks doing our civic duty and then stepping aside. Public service is not something only for the rich, well connected or an incumbent who has strayed from conservative principles," Jeffers said.
And then there was the shenanigans on the floor:
A group of delegates, sympathetic to Jeffers' right to speak at the convention were determined to strike certain new language from the convention rules, which forbids nominations from the floor. A dozen of them were prepared to make motions and offer discussion on the rules, but never had the opportunity to address the chair on the issue. Procedural tricks were used to prevent the issue being raised.

Many delegates expressed confusion, and then anger at the process. "They really rammed that though," said Dave Shegstad, a delegate who ran for Minneapolis City Council last year. "This isn't the way it's supposed to be. Why are they so afraid to hear another voice?" he mused.
Flawed procedures:
without a motion to endorse for governor being made, seconded, discussed or voted on, a co-chair approached the podium to call for a vote. While Pawlenty's speech was being applauded, the co-chair said, "Seeing that there is only one candidate, all in favor of endorsing Tim Pawlenty say aye." Applause continued, but many delegates remained seated and silent.
And all this took place when there appears there wasn't enough people to conduct official business:
Attendance was very low for the convention. Some out-state delegates said the cost was prohibitive. Others cited a lackluster agenda and no competition without Jeffers speaking. At one point it was questioned whether a quorum was present and on Friday, there was doubt enough delegates were present to achieve the 60% threshold required for an endorsement.
No vote, questionable quorum, and making things up as they went along. And this is the party that is in power, that wants to run the state for another 4 years when they can't even run their own convention.

Don't worry, in a few days we'll get another extreme, and MDE and other interested Right Wing bloggers will be there if they choose. See, the DFL is welcoming all to the Party, regardless of the affiliation, because that is how democracy is suppose to work.


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Jeffers Continues Challenge

via the PiPress:
Stub & Herbs owner Sue Jeffers announced in an e-mail Monday that she will take on Pawlenty, who was endorsed for a second term by the state Republican Party last week.

"I'm taking my case straight to the people, and the powers that be in the party can't shut me up anymore," she said.
Bad news for Pawlenty?!? Not so bad he won't be able to retain the nomination. But it will force primary voters to think about which ballot they vote on. A non contested GOP primary ballot opens the door, in states like MN, for crossover. So if there were folks out there who were considering voting for the Pro Kennedy candidate on the DFL senate ballot, or putting a wrinkle in what will be a contested DFL Gubernatorial race, they must now think again. It wasn't that long ago that a bunch a giggly voters went to the polls and pulled the Ventura lever, only to find out they weren't alone in the prank. I suspect the Minnesota electorate is a little more savvy after that incident.


Fear No Evil

Hawkins at RightWingNews shares his list of "Democratic candidates who'd have the best chance to beat a GOP nominee in 2008". He makes it clear it is his view strictly on electability. I was a Lieberman guy early on in '04. At this point, I like Richardson, and was glad to see him high on the list.

Hawkins lists a top 10, here's the cream that floated to the top:
1) Mark Warner: Warner is easily the best candidate the Dems have to offer. The former Virginia governor has a reputation as a moderate and he "speaks Southern." He would likely take Virginia against any GOP candidate other than George Allen and he could easily bring 3-4 other Southern States into the Democratic column. It's no coincidence that the last two Democratic Presidents have been Southern governors and Warner would have an excellent chance to be the third.

2) Bill Richardson: Richardson is the governor of New Mexico, is viewed as a moderate, and has some charisma. Although he was the Ambassador to the United Nations and the Secretary of Energy in the Clinton Administration, he managed to make it out with some valuable experience and without the sort of crushing baggage that Hillary is saddled with.

3) Evan Bayh: Bayh is a moderate Senator from Indiana who's so wildly popular there that he would be able to turn that very red state -- and its 11 electoral votes -- blue. Bayh is a former chairman of the Democratic Leadership conference and has a reputation for being fiscally conservative. Put it all together and you have a candidate who could compete in the South and give the GOP a hard time.
Hillary was next, followed by Gore, then Obama. Flash was no where to be found on the list, further solidifying my moderate credentials!

Be sure to go take a look at the complete list with Hawkins' analysis here.



*hiding*ducking* Since the world survived 1906, 666, and all the other 6s I don't think there will be too much excitment on 6/6/2006. Although it is the lovely Mrs. Flash's birthday, so anything can happen!

Happy Birthday, Baby!!

YOUR Hubby!

Monday, June 05, 2006

He Said, He Said

TPaw said this:
“I can tell you what your worst nightmare is,” he said. “It’s one of the big-spendin’, tax-raisin’, abortion-promotin’, gay marriage-embracin’, more welfare-without-accountability lovin’, school reform-resistin’, illegal immigration-supportin’ Democrats for governor who think Hillary Clinton should be president of the United States.”
Fecke translates at MINvolved.

Last full week of school. I have to box and move everything by the end of the week, so things will be quite busy for me as we wind down. Postings may have to wait till lunchtime rather then my normal morning flurry. We'll see how things go.


Friday, June 02, 2006

Running Away

Mark Kennedy continues his sprint away from the failed and flawed policies of the majority in Washington. Unfortunately for him, the ball and chain is locked firmly around his neck, and it will difficult for him to pull off this deception. But ya gotta give the guy an E for effort.

Independent voice?!?:
"I vote with Minnesota, I vote with my mother and vote with the standards I was raised with, which happen to sometimes coincide more or less with other people and other groups," Kennedy said in the interview.
Yeah, Right! Those of us that pay attention know Kennedy is lock step with the leadership in Washington that has been destructive to Minnesotans. What could be more important for Minnesotans then, let's say, Farmers:
* He ditched his seat on the Agriculture Committee. I'm sure to better help the farmers... right?
* He voted for CAFTA. Farmers across Minnesota loved that one; especially the big ethanol producers.
* And, this is the really amazing one, he cast the deciding vote for the budget bill that cut aid for farmers by $1.8 Billion!!! (among other terrible cuts that hurt Minnesotans)
That's voting with Minnesota?!?

The Right realizes that they have no choice but to distance themselves from . . . . themselves! We will continue to see the President make proposals that will create opportunities for incumbents to declare "I don't agree with that, see, I am independent". That is the Rovian game this year. A lame duck president has nothing to run on anymore, so he will modify and adjust his positions in an attempt to give his loyalist cover going into November. And if the Left let's them pull this off, it will work!


Thursday, June 01, 2006

Today is the First Day

. . of the rest of the campaign.

The Royal Court convenes tonight to begin the process of crowning their anointed candidates. Tonight they begin with Prince Kennedy followed by tomorrow's coronation of King TPaw. I don't suspect any surprises, the GOP is a very scripted and closed group of select individuals. They would have to allow for openness and understanding if they wanted something exciting to happen. But I'll have one eye on them anyway.

Don't worry, the Bickersons meet next week. This will be the other extreme. Too many cooks battling over how much of their favorite seasonings to mix into the pot, not realzing how close they are to ruining the whole batch. We have the most vulnerable GOP party in several years, but the DFL is still managing to make this Blue state Purple.

If only clear heads would prevail, we could get to the business of governing. I think the people of this state, and the country for that matter, have had enough of the childish cat fights we have seen over the last couple years.


On the Estate Tax

Midtopia lays out the lunacy via Meyerson of WaPo:
Kyl's bill would plunge the government another trillion dollars into the red during the first decade (2011-2021) that it would be in effect
Of course clearer heads have a more sensible solution:
Under the $3.5 million exemption, the number of family-owned small businesses required to pay any taxes in the year 2000 would have been just 94, according to a study by the Congressional Budget Office. The number of family farms that would have had to sell any assets to pay that tax would have been 13.
But this administration, and the faux fiscal conservatives have to protect their own:
an estate tax repeal would save the estate of Vice President Cheney between $13 million and $61 million, according to the publicly available data on his net worth. It would save the estate of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld between $32 million and $101 million. The estate of retired Exxon Mobil chairman Lee Raymond would pocket a cozy $164 million. As for the late Sam Walton's kids, whose company already makes taxpayers foot the bill for the medical expenses of thousands of its employees, the cost to the government for not taxing their estates would run into the multiple billions.
Like Sean says, if we are going to 'spend' a trillion dollars, is giving it to a handful of MillionBillionaires really in the best interests of the budget.

Midtopia continues:
"Republicans" and "fiscally responsible" don't belong in the same sentence any more.
Read it all!