Friday, April 10, 2009

Over/Under on Akron Recall Effot

Anyone want to take a guess on how many signatures short Warner Mendenhall's personal vendata against Akron Mayor Don Plusquellic will be after their recall petitions are submitted today? I'm setting the line at 500, and I want the over.

What's Going on In Youngstown?

File this under things that make you go "Hmmm..."

On the same day that Lisa Antonini, the chairwoman of the Mahoning County Democratic Party, announces her resignation, Capri Cafaro, announced she would not run to replace Tim Ryan if he becomes Gov. Strickland's running mate in next falls' re-election campaign. Coincidence? I think not.

What's really going on here is a shake-up in Youngstown politics. Tim Ryan's departure from the OH-17 will create an all out free for all for the seat. Someone will try to use the county party apparatus to build some momentum towards winning the nomination, but its plain that Antonini wasn't in a position to provide any influence on that score; the fact that the Senate Democratic caucus went over her head to appoint State Sen. Joe Schiavoni to fill out the term of now Congressman John Boicceri proves that. As for Capri Cafaro, I think Anthony over at ODB calls it right when he says that either Cafaro is sitting on bad internal polling numbers, or she is much more committed to improving the lot of State Senate Democrats than any of us might have anticipated when she was appointed to fill out the term of former AG Marc Dann.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Can GOP Learn from Michael Steele?

Steele's heretical pronouncements have reinforced an important point. The Republican Party has backed itself into a regional, ideological and demographic corner -- the one marked "rural, conservative, white." The party is out of step with the nation it aspires to lead, and until room is made for those with a range of viewpoints, and those with different racial and ethnic backgrounds, it is hard to imagine how the party can achieve its dream of establishing a new "big tent" majority.

That was the key paragraph from this editorial by Eugene Robinson of the Washington Post. And it exposes the folly of the GOP’s continuing to “double down” on the same policies that got them shellacked in 2006 and 2008. When will the figure it out? Not anytime soon, I figure.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Importance of Vermont Ruling Overlooked

Yesterday, Vermont became the fourth state to legalize gay marriage. Ho hum right?


Yesterday, Vermont became the first state to legalize gay marriage via legislative, rather than judicial, action. This is significant because no longer can the right wingers claim the red herring of "judidical activism" to explain away this ruling. This was a bill, approved by the legislature of Vermont, vetoed by Vermont's GOP governor who said the economy was more important, then re-passed by the required 2/3 margin to override the governor's veto and become law.

Douglas' reasons given for the veto, if true, cement his legacy as a first-order hypocrite. Why? Well, during the 2004 election the GOP argued that gay marriage was such evil that it was more important than the economy when voters were deciding between Bush and Kerry. Now, Douglas can't be bothered to sign this bill because the economy is more important? Please. 

Congrats to Vermont! 10 bucks says this ends up being a big boost to the state's economy, thus proving Gov. Douglas to be an idiot as well as a hypocrite.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

OH-15: Mary Jo Kilroy Stands Up to GOP Bullying

Fisher, Brunner Hire Campaign Staffs

As the 2010 U.S. Senate campaign plunges headlong into the summer of 2009, it is becoming increasing apparent that neither Jennifer Brunner or Lee Fisher are going to back out of this primary. Brunner and Fisher have both hired extensive, experienced campaigners for this race. Fisher has announced he has raised over $1 million in the first quarter, meanwhile, Brunner has recruited Marilyn Brown to run for Secretary of State. Both of those facts indicate to me that they are both in this race for the long haul. I do not expect to see a "Valentine's Day Massacre" this time. Hope everyone is up for a long, nasty fight.

Monday, April 06, 2009

BSB: Fisher Raised Over $1 Million

Buckeye State Blog is reporting that tomorrow , Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher will announce he's raised over $1 million for his US Senate race, and that 85% of that total is from Ohio.

EFF: Obama Administration Takes Bush Position On Warrantless Wiretapping

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, whose goals I support as you can tell from the banner at the bottom of this website, has issued a statement today saying that the Obama Administration has taken the same position as George W. Bush on warrantless wiretapping. Just a note: this is NOT change we can believe in.

San Francisco - The Obama administration formally adopted the Bush administration's position that the courts cannot judge the legality of the National Security Agency's (NSA's) warrantless wiretapping program, filing a motion to dismiss Jewel v. NSA late Friday.

In Jewel v. NSA, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is challenging the agency's dragnet surveillance of millions of ordinary Americans. The Obama Justice Department claims in its motion that litigation over the wiretapping program would require the government to disclose privileged "state secrets." These are essentially the same arguments made by the Bush administration three years ago in Hepting v. AT&T, EFF's lawsuit against one of the telecom giants complicit in the NSA spying.

"President Obama promised the American people a new era of transparency, accountability, and respect for civil liberties," said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kevin Bankston. "But with the Obama Justice Department continuing the Bush administration's cover-up of the National Security Agency's dragnet surveillance of millions of Americans, and insisting that the much-publicized warrantless wiretapping program is still a 'secret' that cannot be reviewed by the courts, it feels like deja vu all over again."