Archive for July 14th, 2006

Links…

Sirota fires back at Lieberman’s staffer over the recent jabbing. Re-ziiiing!

Speaking of exploiting the dead, remember how Bush used 9/11? (Via Intelligent Discontent.) I don’t remember Rehberg’s horror over that commercial. (Crooks and Liars has the video of Bush’s commercial.)

The GOP may be losing the West by tailoring itself to the South. That, and a new breed of Dems is kicking *ss.

Speaking of conservatives tailoring their image to the South, the GOP is desperate to sink the Voting Rights Act.

Are things looking up for the GOP in 2006? Um, guess again.

How’s that economic growth going? You feelin’ it? No? That’s because you’re not part of the richest 1 percent. Unless you’re Denny Rehberg, then my apologies. You are feelin’ it!

And the GAO says Bush’s Iraq plan is “unclear.” Now that’s a euphemism if I’ve heard one.

Halliburton’s handiwork: $14.5 million health-care centers. Check out the pics.

Valerie Plame sues the administration for outing her.

Digby nails the conservative pundits for flip-flopping in ideology. No matter how you parse it, invading Iraq was a bad idea.

Ann Coulter fund-raises for Colorado gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez and netted….$0! Hahaha!

An interesting post about how Israel’s aggression in the Middle East is pushing Iran to develop nuclear weapons.

Robert Brigham’s got the video of Colbert on Lieberman. Hilarious!

The Missoula Independent’s George Ochenski examines the recent hoo-ha surrounding Montana’s budget surplus – it’s a great summary of the issue, and a good read. But it also touches on a couple of points that explain Schweitzer’s success – and by extension tells us why Democrats will probably be in charge around here for a while to come.

I’m going to skip all the part about the rebate – I recommend reading the column for that – and focus on the Guv’s fiscal practices while in office:

Those who have been observing the fiscal behavior of Gov. Brian Schweitzer’s administration would generally agree that he has been cautious in his approach to the state’s budgeting process. So cautious, in fact, that during the 2005 legislative session his budget director, David Ewer, was referred to as “Doctor No.” The moniker came from Ewer’s two-letter response to virtually every spending proposal brought forth by legislators, lobbyists and sometimes even the governor’s own staff.For those of us who are social progressives but fiscal conservatives, it was a huge relief to see a Democratic administration face the demands of its own majorities and keep spending in line with revenue…

[snip]

What the cautious approach also accomplished, besides laying the foundations for today’s surplus, was toss the Republicans into a befuddled tailspin from which they have yet to recover. Suddenly, their well-worn and highly successful “Tax and Spend Democrats” label just didn’t seem to stick anymore. Not only was Schweitzer holding the purse strings tightly, he also refused to allow new taxes. The combination proved disastrous for the Republicans and, despite the experience of their legislative leaders, the new governor handed them their heads on a platter by the end of the session.

I’m all for fiscal responsibility. I’m probably a little more eager to tax than Schweitzer, though, especially things like gasoline, which would help us get off oil dependency, clean the air, and reduce carbon emissions. But that’s why Schweitzer is Governor and I’m just a partisan hack making zero bucks off his blog.

My point is Schweitzer is a good Governor. That’s why Republicans are in a tizzy. There’s nothing to criticize other than the fact that they’re pretty much irrelevant nowadays. (Which is as it should be, based on their recent performance “governing.”)

Jon Tester is of the same mold. He was the state’s senate president during this remarkable feat of budgetry. (And the only reason I say producing a budget surplus is “remarkable” is because Republicans make it seem so. *cough* National debt. *cough cough*) And Monica Lindeen, too, was instrumental in the Montana state legislature.

This country is in a time of crisis. Not just in Iraq, not just over the Constitution and the President’s eagerness to accumulate a disproportionate amount of power. But economically, too. Our deficit is enormous and if something’s not done, only inflation can fix it, tossing our standard of living down the drain. (Unless you’re rich, of course. Like Denny Rehberg.) We need competent, honest lawmakers in office. We need people to fix problems, not create them.

You know what to do. Support Tester and Lindeen.

Matt Singer found the results of June’s Lake Research poll on the Senate race a tad odd. The Rasmussen poll had Tester up by seven; the Lake Research poll has Tester up by a solitary point.

A couple of observations:

First, Tester being a point down to Morrison translated into a win by fifteen points in the primary. The polls indicate, they do not predict.

Second, did you see the favorability ratings? Tester scores a 48% favorable rating and an 18% unfavorable rating – that’s extremely low. How about Burns? 46% favorable, 50% unfavorable. Fifty percent! Half the state thinks Burns don’t get it done!

You need 51% to win an election.

When 50% say they pretty much wouldn’t vote for you even if you were the last candidate on Earth…well…your future is dim.




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