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Saturday, September 17, 2005

Sour Grapes from Whiner Berg


A commenter last night prompted me to check; indeed, Steve Konrad has been hired as the program director at KSTP-AM.

I worked with Steve from 1990 through most of 1991 at KDWB; Steve was producer of the "Steve Cochran Show", KDWB's morning juggernaut at the time; I worked a crappy grunt DJ job at K-63, the oldies station. We both interviewed for the job at KSTP (then called "executive producer", so as to not make the occupant feel excessively powerful). In fact, the two of us came down to the final two for the job, in late July of '91.

Whiner Berg holds grudges, that's for sure.

The final interview was with the consultant who was pulling the strings at the time. His theory - they key to talk radio success was irreverence! Humor! Taking nothing too seriously, and poking pointed fun at everything! Political talk, said he, was pretty much a dead issue. To him, Rush Limbaugh was a success not because he was conservative, but because he was irreverent (the old "Abortion Update" bit, with the vaccuum cleaner sounder, made him laugh up a lung).

Naturally, and correctly, he figured that political talk was my main interest - and that Steve was probably better suited to run a station programmed for sarcastic yuks (although I not only pointed out my background with Don Vogel and Geoff Charles, but in fact pointed him to a tape of Vogel - which led to Don's second hitch in the Twin Cities, the following year). The consultant was responsible for the likes of Turi Ryder and Bob Schumacher and Barbara Carlson, as well as Bob Yates' last couple of years at KSTP.

Sour grapes from Blogger Berg. Mitch Berg has always been rather humor impaired.

Bruce Lambrecht Lobbyist

I've talked with some Republican activists in the area. It sounds like the Governor is really pushing for Lambrecht to run for the Plymouth/Minnetonka senate seat.

From the Minnesota Campaign Finance Board:

Lambrecht, Bruce

Registration Number: 3937

This report includes filings through 1:05 am, Sep. 17, 2005,

2841 Ella Lane
Minnetonka, MN 55305

Telephone: (612)349-2775
Association Represented Identification
Number Registration
Date Termination
Twinsville LLC 5600 3/11/2004 7/31/2005
Urban Ventures Leadership Foundation 5374 4/8/2005 5/13/2005

Lambrecht, McClung, Pawlenty, Stenglein..... and now the Urban Vultures.

Yes these snake oil salesmen.

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Photocop Complaints

I read in the paper today that the cameras photographing us as we run red lights are causing some "resentment". I am not surprised; it is much better to commit our crimes in secret so no one knows who caused the damage.

Sarah Janacek Carries Bush's Water

Just before I left town for a two week vacation, I read Sarah Janecek's diatribe against pay equity. There are so many things in her article (Star Tribune, Sept 2, 2005) that are sappy, it is hard to pick one out. Except I am puzzled that she can definitively quote John Roberts on this issue. I listened to it for three days and heard nothing on Pay Equity; everything he said that referred to earlier memos (remember that the White House refused to release anything current) was his work
product reflecting a certain point of view because they were written for a specific client. Of course, that panel members could have read his opnions as a Court of Appeals Judge; that would not have been too hard.

Back to Pay Equity. Roberts did call it a pernicious re-distribution of wages. Janecek argues that seeking jobs should be based solely on pay, with no consideration of "dead-endedness" and that the market place should determine the pay. She is right
but women should not get less pay than men; the pay should be for the job, not for the sex of the employee.

More on the Plymouth Senate Seat Special Election

It will be interesting to see what happens with the Plymouth seat - since Sen. David Gaither is becoming Pawlenty's chief of staff, and real estate developer Bruce Lambrecht - the guy who was a major player in Stenglein's mayoral campaign, and who stands to benefit big time at the expense of Hennepin County Taxpayers - is thinking of running for the seat. More on Lambrecht is available at Britt Robson's City Pages article here:

The Strib article about Gaither points out:

Gaither, 48, is a businessman and longtime Pawlenty friend. He had never held elective office until winning his Senate seat in 2002, after wresting the GOP endorsement from three-term Sen. Martha Robertson, a moderate Republican from Minnetonka. He also was a member of Pawlenty's gubernatorial transition team in 2002.

"I'm a high-energy-output type of individual," said Gaither, a former state champion hurdler. "I focus on results. I want to help an already high-functioning team to function at a higher level."

Martha Robertson was a social moderate - and Gaither used her moderate positions in favor of gay equality and opposing the criminalization of abortion against her. This is an opportunity for moderates to take back that seat.

From the Strib again:

Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson, DFL-Willmar, said in a news release that the Senate shares the Republican governor's desire for reform, but added: "During a time of budget cuts to areas such as health care, we have concerns about adding another cabinet-level position at a cost of over $100,000 a year. It is also of concern that the Department of Administration has a substantial amount of resources sitting idle and unused."

Johnson praised McElroy as "a gentleman in the truest sense of the word" and said that Gaither "possesses a competitive drive and an understandable willingness to cooperate. ... We look forward to working with a retooled administrative team."

The governor will call a special election to replace Gaither in the Senate. With the Legislature out of session, Pawlenty suggested that he might wait until late in the year to schedule up to three Senate special elections.

Sen. Mark Ourada, R-Buffalo, has announced plans to resign by year's end to take a job in Washington, D.C. Another GOP senator, Dave Kleis, is running for mayor of St. Cloud in the Nov. 8 election.

These will all be good opportunities for moderates to take on, and take the party back from the Leviticus crowd. This Plymouth seat will be the most important.

For once I agree with Matt Entenza:

While McElroy is a political moderate, Gaither is definitely a conservative, Michel said. "But I don't see him as any sort of ideological flame-thrower. He's about getting things done."

Nonetheless, the governor's office is losing McElroy's voice of moderation, said House Minority Leader Matt Entenza, DFL-St. Paul. "One of the last moderate Republicans is being pushed from the center of Pawlenty's administration, and I'm concerned it signals a swing further to the right."

A stopped clock is right twice a day. Matt Entenza is correct on this point. Gaither ran against a good moderate, Martha Robertson. Now with this being an open seat, if the Republican Party chooses a nutball that does the Leviticus crowd bidding, they could end up losing the seat.

Developing. . .

Nonsensical Babble from the Human Life Alliance

The director of the Human Life Alliance - funny, I have never seen them advocating for good, early pre-natal care or understanding much about the nourishment (physical, emotional and educational) necessary for healthy brain development - is imploring the FDA to not approve the over-the-counter sale of the Emergency Contraception (Plan B) pill. She levels lots of unsubstantiated charges, but manages to put the whole thing into a financial context. This is about the same as Pat Robertson saying that we can't have abortion, because we will have no one to pay into Social Security. It has been so long, I can't quote him verbatium. We spend entirely too much energy on trying to control someone's behavior (usually women)and not enough tending to the education and community norm that makes certain behaviors not acceptable to the majority.

Sen. Dean Johnson Drinks the Stadium Session Koolaid

Coverage here, here, and here.

Dean Johnson now gives a lame Hurricane Katrina justification for this. Matt Entenza to his credit (perhaps because he is running for Attorney General) is opposing the idea. Both talk about Hurricane Katrina. Strib:

Sen. Majority Leader Dean Johnson, DFL-Willmar, said the enormous reconstruction project on the Gulf would likely inflate building costs, so the state ought to get going on stadiums soon to save money.

House Minority Leader Matt Entenza, DFL-St. Paul, said a special session would be a distraction for state leaders who are preoccupied with relief efforts.

From the Taxpayer's League Elert:

2. Just make Pogemiller the Majority Leader and get it over with.
Last week, Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson commented on the likelihood of another special legislative session; "All of our juices are being used up for hurricane response, that's where people are centering their attention, and properly so." Fair enough. But after checking with the Senate’s Minneapolis delegation, Johnson changed his tune. On Tuesday, Johnson decided that it was time to "just get it resolved." Sure. But can you really blame Senator Johnson? Even if Johnson isn't the one calling the shots, have you ever taken a look at the biographies of some of our elected officials? Count how many list their occupation (especially metro area DFLers) as "Legislator" (or better yet, "Community Organizer" – are you kidding me?). So there it is. Our legislators are bored and need something to tax.

This is crap.... Certainly legislators like Linda Higgins do deserve criticism on this point - especially if they don't advocate for a referendum. According to the article the Taxpayer's League linked to, Dean Johnson came to his new conclusion after talking to Sviggum and Pawlenty - not Minneapolis legislators. But rural DFLers - such as Al Juhnke and Dean Johnson deserve the rasberries big time on this - as does the governor and speaker Sviggum. All these characters are attempting to stiff the Hennepin County Taxpayer with increased taxes for building a stadium for Pohlad.


Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson on Tuesday subtly stepped up the pressure for a special session, saying he openly supports a legislative session this fall, perhaps in the days just before Thanksgiving.

"Let's just get it resolved," he said after meeting in Eden Prairie with GOP House Speaker Steve Sviggum, who, like Johnson, has said he could support a special session with a narrow agenda and public hearings. Gov. Tim Pawlenty, Republican Senate Minority Leader Dick Day and DFL House Minority Leader Matt Entenza remain noncommittal or skeptical of a session.

It's important for the taxpayer's league to hold both party's accountable on this nonsense - and Governor Pawlenty continues to need calls and emails on this topic.

There are several anti-stadium tax candidates looking at running for that seat from the Republican side. It will be interesting to see what happens on the democratic side. Rumors have it that Bruce Lambrecht - who stands to benefit big time from stadium legislation - is thinking of running for the senate seat vacated by Sen. David Gaither - who has left to become Pawlenty's chief of staff. Rumors also suggest that Plymouth Mayor - and Stadium tax opponent, Judy Johnson is thinking of running for the seat.

Open Seat in Plymouth and the Stadium Tax

State Senator David Gaither (R, Plymouth, SD 43) is resigning to become chief of staff for Tim Pawlenty. Several names are being batted about as possible replacements. Real Estate Developer Bruce Lambrecht and Plymouth Mayor Judy Johnson are both names that have been floated as possible candidates for the seat. Judy Johnson opposes the stadium tax. Bruce Lambrecht stands to benefit from the stadium tax.

Rumor has it that the Governor and Gaither support Bruce Lambrecht - who stands to benefit big time should the Hennepin County Taxpayers be saddled with a stadium sales tax to build a stadium for Carl Pohlad. Lloydletta's Nooz commented earlier about a Star Tribune article that discussed how county commissioner Mark Stenglein has a conflict of interest on the stadium issue. Bruce Lambrecht played a leading role in Mark Stenglein's campaign for Mayor of Minneapolis in 2001. Lambrecht was a very effective money man for Stenglein.

This week Britt Robson of the City Pages has more on Bruce Lambrecht. This article connects the dots between Governor Tim Pawlenty, his mindless spokesperson Brian McClung, Mark Stenglein and Bruce Lambrecht. From the article:

A few weeks after Stenglein voted to approve a sales tax earmarked for a new $478 million Twins stadium--on land where Lambrecht's investment company is the managing entity--the Star Tribune reported that Lambrecht had hosted a fundraiser and played an influential role in Stenglein's unsuccessful 2001 campaign for mayor. The paper also revealed that a Stenglein aide took a three-month leave of absence from his county job to work as a lobbyist for Lambrecht.

Yet over the last three years, another politician has also been a beneficiary of Lambrecht's largesse as a political donor: Tim Pawlenty. And during that time, Pawlenty has changed his position on at least two key issues that are of enormous potential benefit to the value of Lambrecht's property. Also during this period, the governor has hired both Lambrecht's wife and former Lambrecht lobbyist Brian McClung to work in his office at the Capitol.

In January 2002, about four months after Pawlenty announced he was running for governor, Lambrecht contributed $500 to the campaign. In early June, less than two weeks before Pawlenty engaged in a bruising battle with Brian Sullivan for the Republican endorsement at the party's state convention, Lambrecht wrote another $500 check. A month after the convention, on July 17, Lambrecht and his wife, Jeanne Braun, threw a fundraiser for the Pawlenty campaign. According to documents on file at the state's Campaign Finance & Public Disclosure Board, Braun made an in-kind donation of $650.83, described as "Food for Fundraiser." She and Lambrecht also each ponied up another $250 that day. In all, Lambrecht and Braun contributed more than $2,000 to help elect Pawlenty in 2002.

On the day Pawlenty was sworn into office in January 2003, Braun was officially hired as a personal assistant to the governor at an annual salary that would reach $35,000. She held the job until May 26 of this year--three days before the conflicts of interest between Stenglein and Lambrecht hit the front page of the Strib.

Meanwhile, Lambrecht has been a generous and steady contributor to the Republican Party of Minnesota, giving six donations totaling $4,500 in 2003 and 2004. The couple also gave a total of $1,000 to Pawlenty's campaign in 2003. One might think that Lambrecht was contributing to the party and the governor to promote a philosophy of limited government. After all, in 1996, Lambrecht cofounded an antitax group called Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility, and he later made three $500 contributions to the Freedom Club of America, another antitax outfit. Here's the surprise: Even before Pawlenty's spring proposal to raise the cigarette tax (the soon-infamous "health impact fee"), the governor had reversed himself on two positions he took as a state legislator, each time flip-flopping in a manner that would allow massive amounts of new government spending. And in both matters, Bruce Lambrecht was likely to be one of the primary beneficiaries of the government spending Pawlenty now endorses.

The first issue: public funding for a new Twins stadium in downtown Minneapolis. Apparently putting financial profit before political philosophy, Lambrecht has lobbied hard over the past two years for government involvement in a stadium plan that would put a ballpark on and near his real estate holdings. The very concept of "Twinsville"--in which a stadium would be surrounded by housing and related commercial development--is partly Lambrecht's baby.

Pawlenty steadfastly opposed public funding for stadiums as a state senator and gubernatorial candidate, but he effectively reversed that position with regard to the Twins stadium campaign. Suddenly, he was instructing his then-chief of staff Dan McElroy to receive and review stadium proposals in the hope of getting at least one and perhaps as many as three ballparks built. When all the grand stadium schemes fell through during the "do-nothing" 2004 session, Pawlenty hired Stenglein's old aide and Lambrecht's lobbyist at Twinsville, McClung, to be his press secretary at $70,000 a year.

Before the 2005 session, Pawlenty demanded more citizen veto power on major government spending decisions. Yet a few months later he announced that he would not insist on upholding the existing state law that requires a public referendum on the $478 million stadium deal between Twins management and Hennepin County taxpayers.

This will be an interesting race. I have not yet heard about democrats running for this seat. I'd assume that Dean Johnson and other Democratic leaders would be working the phones to find a strong candidate. Any democrat who runs for this seat should strongly oppose the stadium tax. That position will be especially effective should the Republican candidate be developer Lambrecht.

Friday, September 16, 2005


That's Katherine "CopyKate" Kersten. Spotty points it out here.

Kersten has yet to write something original in her columns.

Whining Minneapolis Mayoral Candidates

Strib here.

Rybak, McLaughlin swap unkind words
Rochelle Olson, Star Tribune
September 15, 2005 RYBAK0915

A day after securing the top two spots in the Minneapolis mayoral contest, the incumbent and his challenger mainly took turns whining about each other Wednesday.

Mayor R.T. Rybak and Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin occasionally interrupted their angry comments to mention public policy in their first post-primary interviews.

Rybak got 44 percent of the vote Tuesday to 35 percent for McLaughlin. They will meet head-to-head Nov. 8 with the winner becoming the next mayor.

Although both men are DFLers, they come from different backgrounds and each bristles at the mention of the other. McLaughlin is a career politician who started in the state House of Representatives. Rybak was an anti-airport noise activist who won his first attempt at elective office in 2001 by beating Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton, a McLaughlin ally.

McLaughlin is considered a traditional DFLer with the labor endorsements to prove it. Rybak's views and allegiances are more varied.

Rehearsed gripes

McLaughlin all but calls Rybak a lightweight who attends many media events but fails to follow through. Rybak refers to McLaughlin as part of the "old guard" who would spend the city back into financial trouble.

This petty sniping will keep on for the next couple months.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Illinois Family Institute's Peter LaBarbera Outs Illinois Legislator


I know that the following item will offend some Republicans, but we at the Illinois Family Institute try to put God and moral truth above the interests of any political party. The fact is, a Republican Party that dissembles--or embraces error--on core moral issues like homosexuality, abortion and marriage cannot call itself a "pro-family" party.

God does not care for Republican immorality (e.g., Judy Baar Topinka riding a float in the annual "Gay Pride" parade) any more than He does for Democratic immorality.

I hope you agree with me.

Earlier this year, state Sen. Dan Rutherford, a young, energetic GOP legislator representing a conservative rural district (Pontiac), cast a key vote enabling passage of the awful "gay/transgender" bill. This law will--until we repeal it--put Illinois' "Human Rights" bureaucracy in the service of advancing homosexuality across our state. It is one of the most radical "gay rights" laws in the nation, in that it actually includes trans-gender confusion (read: men in dresses) in its definition of "sexual orientation."

Thanks to Mr. Rutherford's vote for homosexual/transsexual "rights," people of faith--be they in businesses, schools, or churches--WILL be restricted from living out their moral beliefs. It's not a matter of "if" but "when." (If you don't believe that our freedoms are endangered, just look at the case of Matt Barber, who was fired by Allstate--two weeks after his wife gave birth by C-section to their third child--merely for writing an online essay opposing homosexual "marriage" and the "gay" lifestyle.

This battle is indeed about "intolerance"--from social Leftists like the ACLU who seek to use the law and cultural intimidation to deny your freedom to honor your Creator by living according to your biblically-informed conscience. We should note that there are also many non-religious people whose rights to stand up for morality are under threat.

Where's the pride?
I have always believed that if the homosexual movement is so "proud" of itself, its agenda and behaviors should be open for all to see. Yet, sadly, the homosexual agenda (and yes, there is an agenda) advances through secrecy and unelected courts--or, in Illinois' case, through last-minute, lame-duck sessions in which some Republicans joined the Democrat majority in undermining morality and freedom.

I do not believe Dan Rutherford has shown integrity in dealing with the public--since he refuses to answer questions about his own self-interest in advancing the homosexual cause.

I am not saying Mr. Rutherford should not run for office, just that he should be completely honest in doing so.

In light of Rutherford's announcement yesterday of a run for Secretary of State, we repost our item from earlier this year focusing on the "elephant in the room" that nobody wants to talk about: Rutherford's alleged special interest in the homosexual issue.

The elephant in the room.

Won't sign Marriage Referendum
In addition to helping pass the "gay rights" bill, Rutherford, although solidly pro-life on abortion, refuses to sign the Marriage Advisory Referendum petition that has been endorsed by the Illinois GOP and dozens of legislators and pro-family groups.

Back in February, Illinois Family Institute responded to an article in the The Illinois Leader praising Rutherford.

Amid widespread "open secret" discussions among Republican leaders and activists concerning Rutherford's alleged homosexuality, I had written Rutherford (in November 2004), asking him to directly answer questions about it. I argued that his constituents have a right to know since this would influence his votes as a legislator.

Also, I noted that aggressive homosexual "outing" activists put added pressure on "closeted" homosexual legislators to vote pro-"gay."

Rutherford never responded to the IFI query, and has walked away from some other people who have asked him.

Peter then reposts an item he posted about Rutherford earlier this year:

Johnston reasons that "Rutherford makes no effort to confuse people about where he stands. For conservatives he is a solid 80 percent friend - and a hardworking one at that. He has spent more time traveling this state and supporting other conservative Republican candidates than anyone else I know." Therefore, Johnston contends, "[Rutherford] has earned our support."

Contrary to Mr. Johnston's assertion above, I don't believe Dan Rutherford has been honest and straightforward with his constituents and IL conservatives, at least on one key issue: his (alleged) homosexuality. A few weeks ago, Mike Van Winkle of broke the silence by writing about the pink elephant in the room: that Rutherford is (allegedly) homosexual (see an excerpt of Van Winkle's article below).

To Mike, a libertarian, this is not really a big deal, but to many pro-family conservatives, it explains how Rutherford could be so GOOD on the life and gun issues and so BAD on homosexual agenda issues like the SB 3186 vote: he has a special self-interest revolving around the controversial issue of homosexual behavior.

This is important because while Mr. Rutherford may see homosexuality as OK (or be involved in it himself), SB 3186 TAKES AWAY the freedom of other Illinois citizens opposed to homosexuality to act on their beliefs. Personally, I don't understand how any "conservative" could vote for a bill that so blatantly uses government power to restrict people's freedom to act on their moral beliefs.

In his Illinois Leader piece, Charlie Johnston [a good man, by the way] failed to put Sen. Rutherford's vote in its proper context, continuing a charade that must finally come to an end.

In an age when "gay" activists threaten to "out" any homosexual politician (especially Republicans) who votes against their agenda, the wide open "secret" surrounding Rutherford's (alleged) homosexuality makes him a potential blackmail target.

I spoke to the leading gay "outing" activist in DC, Mike Rogers, and he told me point-blank: he and his activist friends don't "out" politicians unless the legislator crosses the gay political agenda (e.g., by opposing "gay marriage"). In other words, if they know a congressman is "gay," but he is careful to go along with the "gay" lobby on votes like the Federal Marriage Amendment, he is left alone. But if not, his "secret" my be revealed.

It seems that Peter LaBarbera and Mike Rogers are united in their goals to out Republican gays. Rogers outs gay republicans who vote against gays on issues like the FMA. LaBarbera outs Republicans who vote with the gay community on legislation.

St Paul Mayor Kelly in Trouble/Minneapolis Mayor Rybak did well

St Paul:

Chris Coleman - 51%
Randy Kelly - 27%
Elizabeth Dickenson - 20%

Strong showing by Elizabeth Dickenson. Incumbent Randy Kelly is in trouble. DFL machine did well in St Paul. This vindicates DFL endorsement.


RT Rybak - 45%
Peter McLaughlin - 35%
Farheen Hakeem - 15%

Surprisingly high showing for Farheen Hakeem. Peter McLaughlin underperformed.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

8th Ward Results

Elizabeth Glidden and Marie Hauser came through the primary in the 8th Ward in Minneapolis. I was disappointed to see Don Bellfield do so poorly - but it's an uphill battle for Republicans in Minneapolis.

Jeff Hayden came in 3rd, and Dennis Tifft came in a distant 4th. I know Dennis from working with him on Robert Lilligren's campaign. Dennis is a good person, but I believe his campaign message was the wrong message for that ward.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Tinklenberg's Campaign Feeding MDE Dirt on Mortensen

That must mean they are concerned about Mortensen. That's pretty pathetic because Mortensen hasn't raised any money. He's got a volunteer base, but he hasn't raised money - and in politics, money = viability.

The dirt: Mortensen is considering hiring Ken Christiensen as a consultant. Christiensen is a Washington consultant.

Mortensen vs Tinklenberg on Daily Kos


One of them Democrats Elwyn Tinklenberg is a DINO -Democrat In Name Only-, and one Scotty Mortensen is a true Progressive. Some say a progressive cannot win in this socially conservative area, I disagree. These people have never had a progressive candidate offered to them since the passing of late senator Paul Wellstone. Plus the open seat dispels the "I'll vote the incumbent guy" vote power.

From Minnesota Public Radio:
Tinklenberg opposes legalized abortion, favors gun rights and supports a federal ban on gay marriage, provided there are some legal protections in place for gay couples. Those views are to the right of many Democrats, but could play well in the socially conservative 6th district.

So we give it up to the Republicans, put a Republican light Tinklenberg, or at least compete with a Progressive. We have nothing to loose!

From Scotty Mortensen's website:
Politicians want to use controversial issues to divide us. I urge Minnesotans to reject the notion of voting on one or two controversial issues to the detriment of our interests as a people. I ask Minnesotans in the sixth district, to consider the overall platform of our campaign to elevate the rights of people, over playing politics. I am opposed to all forms of discrimination, and will never support writing discriminatory law into the US Constitution.

Scotty Mortensen was recently accepted for a possible Democracy For America endorsement. Go to on Tuesday September 13 thought Friday September 16th and vote for Scotty Mortensen. Check out the website at and see what you think. If you can pitch a few buck his way it probably wont hurt. If Scotty doesn't get the endorsement this race could be in the hands of the Republicans no matter who wins the seat.

Meanwhile Minnesota Democrats Exposed now says one of the 6th District campaigns has contacted him/her.

Developing. . .

Democrats Bobbing and Weaving

Gay Liberal blogger, Pam Spaulding gives another example of "Progressives" trying to change the subject rather than directly addressing the anti-gay Federal Marriage Amendment.

Quite frankly, I'm sure the Dems are just as scared of this move, because even in the blogosphere, they don't want to talk about gay civil rights at all. They want the focus to remain on the economy, the war, anything besides this issue, because they don't know how to take the frame away from the Rovian Right (well, Rep. Mel Watt does). Look at these comments yesterday on DKos, when I posted that FMA was being resubmitted by Sen. Allard.

Let's get right past this red-herring issue (4.00 / 2)
Don't get me wrong, we should oppose it. But let's spend the bulk of our energy keeping the spotlight on Iraq.

Yes (none / 0)
The social issues must rear their ugly heads again so they can grandstand on the faux morals platform and avoid be grilled about SS, Iraq and everything else that is tanking in the Republican grand plan. Dare we hope that the media will not take the bait?

good points (none / 0)

we do need to keep our eyes on the iraq/condi/abu gonzales ball. but so do our senators. i think this might be the strongest point in the diary - write this wingnut and his co-sponsor cohorts letters telling them just how skewed their priorities are. how can gay marriage be the single most important issue when the economy, healthcare, employment, foreign relations and military missions are all fuckerpants? any locals up for an LTE?

Pam responds to this nonsense:

FMA doesn't deserve legislative priority, but what these Kossacks don't understand is that the Right has already cemented the issue into the electorate and the media, and the government is GOP-controlled at the Federal level. They are driving the train, people, and the opposition party is MIA on a response as to why civil rights for gay people are no threat to society.

Attacking gays is easy and emotional; you just can't tell people not to think about something that has been pummeled into them over this election cycle without taking a real position. The Democrats have no response to the gay rights issue other than "me too" for the DINOs or stumbling, bumbling avoidance -- "no look over there at Baghdad" or punting, hoping DOMA will stand, while state after state codifies discrimination into their state constitutions. People need to hear how the party stands on this, so that they can put the issue to rest in order to focus on the war, Big Pharma, sleaze and corruption. The diversionary tactics just look wishy-washy to people; everyone knows where the wingnuts stand. The Right loves seeing the Dems bob and weave on this; it helps them.

I think this shows how the left loves to use Gays for money - all the while scare mongering and blaming those evil republicans. Let's not forget that Clinton brought us DADT and DOMA - and didn't sign one piece of pro-gay legislation.

John Kerry opposed the FMA, but supported State Constitutional Amendments.

We also have the DCCC advising Minnesota Congressional candidates to support anti-gay legislation. During the 2004 campaign, DCCC (rather than local) people advised Minnesota congressional candidate Teresa Daly to support the so-called "marriage protection act" which would strip courts of jurisdiction to hear challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act. This I got from former Daly campaign manager Darin Broton.

As reported earlier, Democratic Minority Leader, Nancy Pelosi has given Tinklenberg $2,000 for his campaign. Other Democratic leaders, Steny Hoyer and Rahm Emanuel have also given Tinklenberg $2000 or above. Rahm Emanuel stumped for Tinklenberg in Minnesota I believe, though it's not clear from the photos whether this event is in Minnesota or Washington DC. See the photos of the event here.

Tinklenberg has Ed Gross on his staff. Ed Gross is someone I know and respect. Ed worked with the Minnesota Women's Political Caucus a bit on message development.

Anyway, I've gotten this from a Lloydletta's Nooz reader:

When Congress left for recess in August, nobody could have known what they would return to. Now they are back, and although there is unprecedented national unity in support of the victims of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, Congress will face sharp choices in how to best help the survivors get back on their feet - and how to move our country forward with the lessons we have learned.

I will be holding an online chat to answer your questions on the massive range of issues that now stand before us. Join me Tuesday at 4:00 PM Eastern (1:00 PM Pacific), and submit your questions then or beforehand starting at 10:00 AM Eastern (7:00 AM Pacific) here:

Also, I'm hoping to discuss our recruited candidates, the strategy for the next elections, and other issues that are important to you. The balance of power in Washington has profound effects on every facet of our lives.

I'll do my best to address your questions and concerns across the board.

Again, the chat will take place on Tuesday at 4:00 PM Eastern (1:00 PM Pacific), but you can start submitting questions at 10:00 AM Eastern (7:00 AM Pacific) - hope to see you there:


John Lapp
Executive Director, DCCC

This should be interesting.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Crescent City Shakedown:

A benefit for New Orleans Musicians, is happening at the Cabooze Sunday, September 18, 4:30 pm-11 pm. Already confirmed are Dean McGraw and members of the Big Wu, Butanes, Paul Metsa, Butch Thompson and more on the way. $10 minimum donation. ALL proceeds will go to the Tiptina's Foundation Artists Relief Fund.

Thanks in advance for your support. Stay tuned here for more details!

PZ Myers Fisks Powerline's Latest Nonsense


Democrats Use Minnesota Democrats Exposed to Dump Opposition Research on Each Other

Minnesota Democrats Exposed is an anonymous blog. Recently DFL opponents to Colleen Rowley in the 2nd District have leaked a fundraising letter for Colleen Rowley that was sent using Inverhill Community College Computers. The person who sent the email is an instructor at Inverhills Community College - and is also the faculty advisor for Inverhills Community College Democrats.

Now MDE is expecting some more dirt on one of the 6th District Democratic Candidates:

Saturday, September 10, 2005
2 + 6 = MDE
My DFL source for the Coleen Rowley fundraising letter contacted me today to express their extreme happiness with how I presented the information. According to my DFL source, I will be rewarded by receiving more insider information on Rowley's campaign. In the end, Rowley may be the DFL endorsed candidate, but the race is far from over.

My DFL source also informed me that a similar battle is brewing in the 6th Congressional District between Elwyn Tinklenberg and Scotty Mortensen.

I promised my DFL source that I would not reveil which DFL candidate in the 6th he or she favored. Although my DFL source lives in the 2nd, they have numerous friends in the 6th who are working on both campaigns. But it will be obvious which campaign is being "exposed."

My DFL source has provided my contact information to the campaign in the 6th Congressional District they are supporting. I have been told to expect "insider" information on the other, less popular DFL candidate.

Stay tuned for more updates.

Now who was the 2nd District Source? Teresa Daly ran for the seat the last time. She is considering running again - but has not committed to it yet. Teresa is not the type of person who engages in these types of shenanagans.

Now the question is which 6th District campaign will contact MDE. Will it be the well funded and staffed with paid professional staff Elwyn Tinklenberg campaign? Or will it be the scrappy volunteer based Scotty Mortensen campaign?

Speaking of Elwyn Tinklenberg, he still has nothing up on his website. We know that Tinklenberg supports the Federal Bachmann Amendment and supports criminalizing abortion. While a staffer for Tinklenberg told me that Tinklenberg supports civil unions, the campaign never made an attempt to correct the record with press accounts of his support for the Federal Bachmann Amendment (which would also ban civil unions).

Janet Robert from Air America is one of his big contributors. Janet Robert ofcourse, is the Air America Minnesota owner who bans the discussion of guns, gays and abortion on her station. In fact, Janet Robert quashed discussion of stem cell research on her station, when former producer Darin Broton proposed the idea. She said it was a social issue and shouldn't be discussed. Many pro-life Democrats and Republicans support stem cell research. Orin Hatch is a good example. Both Norm Coleman and Bill Frist have stated publically that they support stem cell research (and want to change the current Bush policy on this issue). So when Elwyn Tinklenberg says he is "pro-life", does he mean he believes life begins at conception, and that he opposes birth control pills because they serve as abortefacients, and also opposes emergency contraception? That seems to be Janet Robert's position. That is also the position of John Ashcroft and Rick Santorum.

My guess is that currently DFL operatives are reading MDE - and clearly are giving him tips. What would be rather interesting is to see whether MDE would take and publish tips that attacked DFLer Randy Kelly in St Paul.

Here's the letter a former leader in Stonewall DFL sent to Elwyn Tinklenberg:

Mr. Tinklenberg:

Why would a Democrat support someone like you, who has used his campaign kickoff to announce that he opposes three major planks in the party's platform (gay rights, gun control and reproductive rights)? If people want a pro-handgun, anti-choice, anti-gay candidate to vote for, they already have one in Michele Bachmann, Phil Krinkie, Cheri Pierson Yecke or Jim Knoblauch. We had one Republican Lite candidate--Janet Robert--run in the 6th District already and it was a disaster. We don't need another one.

Note: Janet Robert got 35% of the vote when she ran against Kennedy. Patty Wetterling got 45% of the vote. Jesse Ventura won in this district - and took the clearest and most articulate stand against the state Defense of Marriage Act in a debate with Norm Coleman and Skip Humphrey.

Please take your candidacy down the hall to the first door on the RIGHT. That would be the GOP.

As a long time DFL activist and as a gay man, I can not and will not support your campaign in any manner. This decision is based on your support of the Federal Marriage Amendment. If you need to support the sham called marriage, how about outlawing divorce? Constitutionally codified discrimination is completely wrong and the argument that gay marriage is a "special right" is ridiculous. The only ones with special marriage rights are the heterosexuals who can get married to the exclusion of all others.

I find it hilarious that as a gay man, that I can at a moments notice marry any lesbian or heterosexual diseased, drug-addicted prostitute and society would completely support my marriage.

I am aware of your argument that this is a "conservative district", but that bullshit doesn't cut the cake. You are not any different than any Republican running for the seat and there is no single reason in the world to believe that conservative Republican voters will vote for a "alleged" Democrat that holds the same political view points as the endorsed Republican candidate on many issues. I will also assure that the (entire gay population of which there are thousands in the district) will know of your support of the Federal Marriage Amendment and withhold their support of your campaign.

Perhaps you will come to the conclusion that you are running in the wrong race, the wrong district and the wrong party.

Developing. . .

Jokers to the Right

Marty Andrade is upset that Bush's nominee for Chief Justice isn't conservative enough:

I liked Roberts as a replacement for Sandra Day O'Conner. You were replacing a squish with an unknown and untested but right leaning justice in John Roberts. This was fine, O'Conner wasn't my favorite jurist, and from what I read of Roberts he'd be a slight improvement.

But now Bush wants Roberts as the Chief Justice of the United States of America. Roberts is the replacement for Rehnquist. Rehnquist was a known quantity, a states rights conservative that wrote the dissent in the Roe v. Wade case and Bush wants to replace him, the icon of the Pro-Life movement, with some Dudley Doo Right no cojones jurist that nobody really knows? You've got to be kidding me.

This will lead to a huge moderation of the court. With Roberts now replacing Rehnquist, O'Conner will require another appointment to replace her. If Bush actually decides to replace her with a conservative, the Dems will have a field day. They will talk about how Bush was trying to replace a swing vote with a conservative, how great O'Conner was, and because Republicans (when in office) can't carry their own jockey straps, they'll cave.

The court will go from right leaning (barely) to centrist. Conservatives will have lost ground for voting for Bush, not gained any. What a scam, Bush did lie.

His commenters seem to agree, and one suggests appointing Adulterer Randall Terry for Judge.


At 3:33 AM, Mayor of Tommyville said…

Hear yea Hear yea, All rise...the honorable Justice Roberto Gonzalez is now presiding....And he says you should put me on da' roll.


At 3:45 AM, Tony said…

if he doesn't move the almost certain Roberts in as Chief then Stevens will be Chief for the next year and the Dems WILL delay confirmations of any Chief that Bush appoints in the future.

Not my favorite appointment, but it is necessary to not have a full year be totally run by the uber-left of the US Supreme Court.


At 5:29 AM, Andrew D. Gettis said…

I hate to say it, but…



At 9:58 PM, Captain Bogs said…

There is only one way to see what a justice will do on the Supreme Court: Put him on the Court and wait to see what happens. Most of the time a conservative becomes a moderate (O'Conner was thought to be a conservative when she was appointed) and moderates become liberals. (All the other liberals appointed by Republican presidents.) Fact of Washington life.

Bush must think Roberts is a true conservative or else he would have moved Scalia to chief and put Roberts as an associate justice. At least I hope so.


At 11:08 PM, Mayor of Tommyville said…

Yesterday as the guest speaker at the washington press club, Robert Bork said that If Conservatives think they're going to get an outed conservative on the court then they are nuts and that a stealth choice like Roberts is the best that they could hope to get. I suppose thats a pragmatic endorsement of him but I'm still pushing for Randall Terry to fill O'Conner's seat.


At 10:05 PM, franklin said…

I suspect Bush isn't stupid enough to have nominated Roberts for CJ without a backup plan to nominate a lesser conservative for O'Connor's seat. I think he relishes the idea of a fight over a Janice Rogers Brown or Miguel Estrada, but I'd bet we end up with someone more Roberts-esque - squeaky clean AND a constitutionalist.

Yup the Randall Terry who said this about the Massachusettes ruling on Gay Marriage:

If outraged citizens see one of these judges in a bar, they may be tempted to spit in their face, or beat them, or get a bunch of friends to tar and feather them.

Yes, Adulterer Randall Terry.

The same guy who became the hired gun of the Schindlers - the family of Terry Schiavo.

Bush would never appoint that wackjob to a supreme court judge.