Friday, March 17, 2006



Barbara Boxer is my hero! What a great senator! Courageous and with great instincts. Sure, I know that The Washingtonian's "Best & Worst of Congress" issue show that congressional staffers voted her to rank just under Rick Santorum when it comes to the "No Brain" department (barely beating out well-known dim bulb George Allen), but I'm proud as hell to have a senator who can be counted on to stand up to Bush more than any other senator in the whole U.S. And that's worth a couple IQ points in my book.

But I was on the phone with someone who's running for Congress the other day-- someone who really is an actual genius-- and she told me something about my wonderful Senator Boxer that saddened me greatly. Jan Schneider, the progressive grassroots candidate for Cruela Harris' abandoned seat (FL-13) is running against a DCCC hack and... well, speaking of dim bulbs... this one would give... well, Katherine Harris tied Randy "Duke" Cunningham as stupidest representative in the House, so maybe there's even something almost fitting there. Unless, of course, people in the district want to up the ante a little on the quality of representation they get. Anyway, I'm getting off the point here. What Schneider told me is that DCCC boss Rahm Emanuel has convinced a gaggle of name brand Dems, including the outstandingly-- and for that district probably more than a little too outstandingly-- liberal Boxer, to do fundraisers and in other ways support Schneider's DCCC opponent. Schneider and Boxer are much more ideologically simpatico than Boxer and Jennings (the DCCC thing) so I was somewhat perplexed as to why Boxer was supporting the party line Inside-the-Beltway bosses and elitists instead of the grassroots progressive. I've been pondering it ever since. I only want to believe the best of Boxer. She's so great. I mean Kerry I understand. Regardless of the fact that Schneider worked so hard-- and so effectively-- for him in 2004 it doesn't surprise me that he sold her out-- the same way he did to Cegelis-- when Emanuel asked him too. (Now he claims he didn't know there was a primary and tries to make it sound like he was mislead by Emanuel. I think he's a once idealistic guy who's now just another sleazy-- albeit progressiver than most-- pol and I don't believe him.)

And then today I got this e-mail from a friend of mine up in Pomboville. More heartbreak; well, not as much because I've already seen what a weak and pathetic wretch the incredibly, wonderfully progressive Nancy Pelosi has turned herself into. But still... Pomboville is a lot closer to Pelosiville than FL-13 is to California. And the gist of the e-mail is that Nancy Pelosi is hosting a fundraiser for Steve Filson, the handpicked DCCC nothing-much candidate, who's trying to worm his way into a race that by all rights should go to Jerry McNerney, the progressive and grassroots candidate-- in fact, the progressive and grassroots candidate who was endorsed by the California Labor Federation earlier this week. (That's the umbrella labor group that includes both the AFL-CIO and the Change to Win unions.) When they endorsed him-- despite Rahm Emanuel's bullying and blustering, Sandra Carter, Secretary-Treasurer of the San Joaquin/Calaveras Central Labor Council said workingmen and women are looking forward to McNerney's candidacy because "he is the candidate who has the ideals and ideas to best represent this district." Art Pulaski, the Executive Secretary and Treasurer of the Federation said McNerney was endorsed instead of the candidate the DCCC is trying to force on the district because "he shares our mutual commitment to the working men and women of California. As a renewable energy expert, Jerry’s vision is to get America working again by bringing new energy technology jobs to California. Unlike Richard Pombo and his Washington cronies, Jerry wants to build an economy that works for everyday Americans, not just for lobbyists and their CEO friends... With this endorsement, between now and Election Day our member unions will be on the ground and on the phones to help Jerry end Pombo Politics and restore honesty, integrity, and accountability to Washington." That "we" won't include the increasingly out-of-touch Pelosi, now more an Inside-the-Beltway creature than a Bay Area progressive activist.

I have driven some good Democrats crazy by comparing Rahm Emanuel to Tom DeLay (mirror imagine and all that). Does that make Pelosi a potential more svelte version of Denny Hastert?!?!?!! Oy!

Here's a letter Pelosi sent progressive funders: "A few weeks ago, I emailed a number of my supporters asking for support for Tammy Duckworth in Illinois' 6th District. Due in large part to Bay Area support, we raised over $375,000 for her campaign. Tammy is now poised for victory next Tuesday and will be well positioned to win this Republican held open seat in November.

"The very next priority is right here in the Bay Area. Richard Pombo, the ethically challenged Republican Congressman from the 11th District, has been criticized for supporting changes in the law that would benefit his family's business interests and for his donations from admitted felon Jack

"Our best opportunity to defeat Pombo is Democrat Steve Filson. Filson joined the Navy in 1970 and became an Aircraft Carrier Jet pilot. He retired with over 20 years of faithful service in 1994.  Filson has since worked for United Airlines, is a member of the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), and
has served in various union positions.

My good friends (Mr. and Mrs. X [I don't want to embarrass any unsuspecting Democrats who were probably sold a line of crap]) are hosting an event for Steve next week at their home: (fancy rich peoples' address in San Francisco). Please consider joining me as a co-host of this event with a
contribution of $500, $1,000, or $2,100. You can simply print the attached donation form
and fax it directly back to my office at 202-741-7359. This event is vital to help Steve obtain the financial resources necessary to defeat Richard Pombo.

I admit that I would have loved to see Nancy Pelosi supporting true blue Democrats and grassroots faves like Christine Cegelis and Jerry McNerney, instead of Rahm Emanuel's puppets, but even better would be for her to follow Democratic Party rules and let the local Democrats decide who the best candidates are in these contested primaries. Pelosi should be ashamed. Please help fight off the stench of Inside-the-Beltway skullduggery by contributing directly to Jerry McNerney, Jan Schneider and Christine Cegelis via ACT BLUE. They may not have fabulously rich friends living in fancy San Francisco condos who can fork over $2,000 a piece when Pelosi and Emanuel want to give a pliable candidate a boost. But if enough people contribute $10 and $20 each, we can beat the Inside-the-Beltway Democratic bosses and then go on the beat the Inside-the-Beltway Republican bosses. Sometimes I think they have more in common with each other than they do with us!


Oh, I forgot to mention that Pelosi decided to weigh in on Russ Feingold's increasingly popular motion to censure Bush for his rampant and serial illegal behavior. Unfortunately the spokesperson for Rahm Emanuel and Steny Hoyer, has weighed in on Bush's side. According to Tom Curry at MSNBC "House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi has chosen the “discreetly kill” option, arguing that the current impeachment/censure talk is just a pointless distraction from the party’s message." Does this mean she might tell us what the party's message is? I thought Rahm isn't allowing that.

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At 8:51 PM, Blogger progressivedem11 said...

Pelosi is while dissapointing is not super suprising to me. She wants to move up and she has to work with dlc aspects of the party and republicans sometimes, to do so. Remember, I believe she supported Roemer(SP) the dlc candidate against howard dean for dnc chair. She's got a difficult job with some of the democrats in the house, and with Hoyer as a whip, but still, she's been doing a tight rope act between her base supporters and grassroots vs. her D.C. interests and friends.

Boxer is more suprising to me. She's usually pretty in touch with her base and the grassroots. I'll withold judgement there.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...

A correspondant of mine, Tom, wrote an e-mail I wanted to share that offers a pretty good defense-- beyond just the indisputable facts that Rahm Emanuel and Steny Hoyer are MUCH MUCH worse-- of Nancy Pelosi. Here are Tom's main points:

1. Pelosi backed Murtha. This is a big fucking deal. She was criticized by the naysayers in the Party including a whisper campaign by her rival Hoyer, the DCCC chairman and the Senate too. Some of us came to her defense. Others didn't. She gets a lot of credit for that. Every other leader in the Democratic Party other than Pelosi and Dean is opposed to Democrats having a strong message on Iraq. Every one of them. Iraq is the number one issue driving the desire for change in the country. Ignoring it as other Democrats too often do is clinical insanity.
2. Pelosi whipped a really strong CAFTA vote. Hoyer didn't want to resist AT ALL. He was dragged kicking and screaming. CAFTA whizzed through the Senate.
3. Pelosi stayed loyal to her principles and resisted the Republican bankruptcy bill and the Estate Tax elimination. I'm not sure if you remember last Spring but the Democrats, especially in the Senate, were letting a lot of pro-corporate legislation pass through. Stuff that has hurt millions of Americans.
4. Pelosi helped coin the term "culture of corruption" and forced it into the public consciousness. The DCCC gets a lot of credit for pushing the corruption story but the "watchdog not a lapdog" metaphor another House leader was using never took off.
5. Medicare, Social Security, the Budget, Tax Cuts: These are all issues that the House leadership has been farther ahead on than anywhere else in the Party.

At 6:36 AM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...


At 6:36 AM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...


At 6:36 AM, Blogger DownWithTyranny said...



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