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BLOG ARCHIVE: JULY 1-15, 2006

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WEEKEND NEWS UPDATE.

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
COLORADO - GOVERNOR: Former Denver District Attorney Bill Ritter (D) - 42%, Congressman Bob Beauprez (R) - 37%. (Rasmussen Reports).
RHODE ISLAND - GOVERNOR:
Lt. Governor Charlie Fogarty (D) - 43%, Governor Don Carcieri (R) - 42%. (Rasmussen Reports).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.15.06 | Permalink |

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Israel-Hezbollah fighting intensifies ... US Senate Commerce Committee Chair Ted Stevens (R-AK) thinks the internet is "a bunch of tubes" and that his staff once sent him "an internet" and it took four days to arrive because some people were watching movies online. Click here for the amusing video ... and Georgia primary and Alabama run-off voters cast ballots on Tuesday.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.15.06 | Permalink |

FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
CALIFORNIA - GOVERNOR: State Treasurer Phil Angelides (D) - 46%, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) - 44%. (Rasmussen Reports).
CALIFORNIA - US SENATE:
US Senator Dianne Feinstein (D) - 60%, former State Senator Dick Mountjoy (R) - 30%. (Rasmussen Reports).
GEORGIA - LT. GOVERNOR - GOP PRIMARY: State Senator Casey Cagle (R) - 41%, former Christian Coalition Executive Director Ralph Reed - 36%. (Insider Advantage).
ILLINOIS - GOVERNOR: Governor Rod Blagojevich (D) - 45%, State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka (R) - 34%. (Rasmussen Reports).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.14.06 | Permalink |

VERMONT: DEMS FOR BERNIE (WHETHER HE LIKES IT OR NOT).
Congressman Bernie Sanders (Independent) -- a self-proclaimed socialist -- likes his political independence. He caucuses with the House Dems, but won't join the party. The DSCC is supporting him for the open US Senate seat, but Sanders said he wouldn't accept the Democratic nomination on the ballot. He helped create the Vermont Progressive Party many years ago, and is close to party leaders, but won't run under their banner either. All of this hasn't stopped the Dems from trying to give Sanders the Democratic nomination in the Senate race, over his objection. The Boston Globe reported State Democratic Chair Ian Carleton and other party leaders are organizing a signature drive to place Sanders on the ballot -- against three Dems who are actively seeking the nomination. "Bernie Sanders has by far the best chance of winning, and would work closely with and would respect Democratic leadership in Washington. Anyone who takes a practical look at Vermont politics will say that this is the best thing to do for the greater good here," explained said Carleton. If Sanders wins the nomination but then declines it, the Dems will go without a nominee on the November ballot. Sanders is already expected to win the seat -- and win in a landslide -- but this "No Democratic nominee" move would simply give him an even greater victory margin in November.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.14.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: Retired Navy Admiral and former Deputy Chief of Naval Operations Joe Sestak, Democrat for Congress in Pennsylvania's CD-7; and Townsend (NY) Town Council Peter Briggs.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Former CIA agent Valerie Plame and her husband are suing Vice President Dick Cheney, indicted former VP Chief of Staff Scooter Libby, and White House Chief of Staff Karl Rove for allegedly conspiring to destroy her career by leaking info about her covert career to the media. So, will we have a future deposition scene where Cheney says "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'leak' is."

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.14.06 | Permalink |

THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE.

CONNECTICUT: NEW WILD CARD IN US SEN RACE; GOP TRIES TO FORCE OUT OWN NOMINEE.
US Senator Joe Lieberman (D) is already facing a very aggressive primary challenge from wealthy peace candidate Ned Lamont. Lieberman is worried enough about the contest that he's also collecting petition signatures to turn into state officials the day after the primary for an Independent run in November. Former State Representative Alan Schlesinger (R) is also running, but he scores so low in the polls he isn't any factor in the race under any circumstances. Here's the new wrinkle in the race: college economics professor and State Representative Diana Urban (R) announced this week she's collecting signatures to run for US Senate as an Independent. Even more unusual, Urban is running to the left of Lieberman. She opposes the Iraq War, thinks more needs to be done to combat global warming, and thinks Lieberman has been "too supportive" of President Bush and the GOP Congressional leadership. Urban is also running simultaneously -- and unopposed -- for reelection to the State House. "I don't get it ... To my knowledge, she doesn't speak for anyone in the party. She certainly doesn't speak for the House Republican caucus," said incoming State House GOP leader Lawrence Cafero to the New London Day. "The more the merrier. The more the vote gets split up, the better my chance is," said Schlesinger. Urban will face a big hurdle collecting the signatures within the next month to qualify for the ballot. However, Urban was surprisingly candid about her long odds: "We don't have any money. We have nothing except people that believe in me. That's all I have. I don't have enough money to pay my frigging taxes ... I was enormously frustrated, because I have a phenomenal amount of things to say ... I can't sit this one out." In related news that broke hours later, the Hartford Courant reported Wednesday Schlesinger may soon quit the Senate race. According to the newspaper, Schlesinger purportedly has a serious gambling problem -- even going so far as to frequently gamble under the fake name of "Alan Gold." That has caused state GOP leaders to ask him to step aside so they can name a replacement nominee. "Our mistake is that we only vetted candidates using their real names, not aliases," moaned State GOP Chair George Gallo. No word yet what Schlesinger will do, but I'd give 3:1 odds he quits.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.13.06 | Permalink |

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
CALIFORNIA - US HOUSE - CD-50: Congressman Brian Bilbray (R) - 51%, college professor Francine Busby (D) - 40%. (KGTV-TV/SurveyUSA).
GEORGIA - GOVERNOR - DEM PRIMARY:
Lieutenant Governor Mark Taylor - 48%, Secretary of State Cathy Cox - 42%. (Strategic Vision-R).
GEORGIA - LT. GOVERNOR - GOP PRIMARY: State Senator Casey Cagle (R) - 42%, former Christian Coalition Executive Director Ralph Reed - 41%. (Strategic Vision-R).
MASSACHUSETTS - GOVERNOR - DEM PRIMARY: Former US Assistant Attorney General Deval Patrick (D) - 37%, venture capitalist Chris Gabrieli - 27%, Attorney General Tom Reilly (D) - 26%. (WBZ-TV/SurveyUSA).
NEW JERSEY - US SENATE: US Senator Bob Menendez (D) - 43%, State Senator Tom Kean Jr. (R) - 37%. (Strategic Vision-R).
WISCONSIN - PROPOSED STATE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO BAN SAME-SEX MARRIAGE: For - 48.5%, Against - 47.8%. (WisPolitics.com).

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.13.06 | Permalink |

FLORIDA: HARRIS SOAP OPERA CONTINUES.
Democrats remain gleeful that -- by state law -- Congresswoman Katherine Harris (R) will be the first name on the ballot in this November's elections. The latest embarrassment by Harris is that her entire new campaign leadership team -- the folks who replaced the team that quit three months ago when they found Harris too impossible to work for -- is set to quit this week. The Hotline reports Harris' campaign manager, spokesman and state field director are all departing. "She's just very difficult to work with," said one Harris aide to Hotline. Most recent independent polls show Harris trailing US Senator Bill Nelson (D) by around a 2-to-1 margin.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.13.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: US Senator Hillary Clinton, Democrat for re-election in New York.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Third Party Watch reported on a schism in the Constitution Party. The Montana, New York, Ohio, and Oregon state affiliate parties have apparently "disaffiliated with the national CP." The Montana and Oregon branches are among the most active CP chapters in the nation in terms of respectable candidate recruitment efforts.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.13.06 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
FLORIDA - GOVERNOR - GOP PRIMARY: Attorney General Charlie Crist - 61%, State CFO Tom Gallagher - 23%. (WFOR-TV/SurveyUSA).
FLORIDA - US SENATE- GOP PRIMARY:
Congresswoman Katherine Harris - 51%, attorney Will McBride - 14%, retired Navy officer LeRoy Collins Jr. - 8%, developer Peter Monroe - 3%. (WFOR-TV/SurveyUSA).
MAINE - GOVERNOR:
State Senator Chandler Woodcock (R) - 43%, Governor John Baldacci (D) - 41%, "Other" - 2%. (WCSH-TV/SurveyUSA).
MASSACHUSETTS - GOVERNOR -
(State House News/KRC):
Former US Assistant Attorney General Deval Patrick (D) - 40%, Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey (R) - 31%, former State Turnpike Authority Board Member Christy Mihos (Ind.) - 9%, Affordable housing activist Grace Ross (Green) - 2%.
Attorney General Tom Reilly (D) - 36%, Healey (R) - 31%, Mihos (Ind.) - 13%, Ross (Green) - 3%.
Businessman Chris Gabrieli (D) - 39%, Healey (R) - 30%, Mihos (Ind) - 9%, Ross (Green) - 3%.
MASSACHUSETTS - GOVERNOR - DEM PRIMARY: Patrick - 35%, Gabrieli - 22%, Reilly - 19%. (State House News/KRC).
MISSOURI - US SENATE: US Senator Jim Talent (R) - 42%, State Auditor Claire McCaskill (D) - 42%. (Rasmussen Reports).
MONTANA - US SENATE: State Senate President Jon Tester (D) - 50%, US Senator Conrad Burns (R) - 43%. (Rasmussen Reports).
WISCONSIN - GOVERNOR: Governor Jim Doyle (D) - 49%, Congressman Mark Green (R) - 36%. (Madison Capital Times/University of Wisconsin).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

P2008: GOP RACE UPDATES.
Florida Governor Jeb Bush's name is being floated -- again -- as a possible VP runningmate for US Senator John McCain. "I like Senator McCain. I think he's a good guy ... There's all sorts of time to worry about the 2008 election," said Bush to the AP ... The Des Moines Register reports Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has picked up some major endorsements in Iowa, including that of '02 Governor nominee Doug Gross. The newspaper also said Romney has "the longest list" of GOP endorsers in the state out of all the potential Republican candidates ... US Senator George Allen toured the controversial US prison at the Guantanamo Navy base in Cuba this week. While many foreign leaders see a facility of questionable legality that employs highly-suspect interrogation methods possibly violative of international treaties, Allen seemingly saw a Club Med-like island resort. Allen praised the "outstanding job" by the Americans working at the base, said "the interrogators go beyond Geneva Convention" requirements, detainees are "treated very well" and "detainee operations in Guantanamo Bay should continue."

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

MINNESOTA: MILLIONAIRE "PEACE CANDIDATE" QUITS US SENATE RACE.
Wealthy philanthropist and veterinarian Ford Bell (DFL-MN) quit the open seat race for US Senate on Tuesday, saying he was not able to raise enough money to be a viable candidate in the primary. Bell had positioned himself as a Wellstone-style "peace candidate" and "insurgent" against the party establishment and more centrist Hennepin County Attorney Amy Klobuchar in the DFL primary. Bell said the DSCC's backing of Klobuchar made it very hard for him to raise money in the state. However, he immediately called for party unity and endorsed Klobuchar. "The differences within our party [with Klobuchar] are important, but the differences between [Congressman] Mark Kennedy, George Bush and the needs of America are much greater," said Bell. Candidate filing closes July 18, but Bell's departure clearsed the way to Klobuchar's nomination without requiring her to expend any serious funds in the primary. Kennedy, likewise, only faces nominal opposition in the GOP primary.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

WISCONSIN: CANDIDATE FILING CLOSES.
Candidate filing closed in Wisconsin on Tuesday. Governor Jim Doyle (D) and challenger Congressman Mark Green (R) are unopposed for their respective gubernatorial nominations. Attorney General Peg Lautenschlager, who pled guilty to DUI charges last year, faces a tough Dem primary challenge from Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk. US Senator Herb Kohl (D) faces a nominal primary challenge, then will cruise to a landslide re-election victory in November over attorney and frequent candidate Robert Gerald Lorge (R). Green's open CD-8 seat is the congressional race worth watching. State Assembly Speaker John Gard (R) is the frontrunner in the CD-8 race, but faces competitive primary and general election contests. A few of the state's other Congressional districts have a slight potential for producing marginally competitive races. The Green Party fielded several statewide and congressional candidates. The Constitution and Libertarian parties -- which formerly filed large slates of candidates in the state -- each fielded very few hopefuls. Click here to view the complete list of Wisconsin candidates.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

HEALTH NEWS: ARK LT GOV IN "GRAVE" CONDITION; NV CONTROLLER DIES.
ARKANSAS: An ailing Lieutenant Governor Win Rockefeller (R) quietly flew back to Arkansas and was immediately hospitalized there in "grave" condition, following a second failed bone marrow transplant procedure in Seattle. Rockefeller suffers from myeloproliferative disorder, which is related to leukemia. Until Rockefeller withdrew last year from the 2006 race for Governor due to health reasons, polls showed he was a frontrunner for the open seat. According to published reports, Rockefeller is in the intensive care unit at the University of Arkansas under an assumed name, suffering from pneumonia and other life-threatening complications following his recent chemotherapy procedures. Well-connected sources in Arkansas told Politics1 Rockefeller only has "days to live."
NEVADA: State Controller Kathy Augustine (R) died on Tuesday from complications from a massive heart attack suffered over the weekend. She had no history of heart illness. Augustine, 50, was a candidate for the open State Treasurer's post in next month's primary. Last year, Augustine became the only Nevada state constitutional officer to be impeached while in office. She plead guilty to misdemeanor violations, was censured by the legislature, and was allowed to remain in office. Before her ethics problems, Augustine was viewed as a future candidate for US Senate or Governor.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: university instructor Bruce Guthrie, Libertarian for US Senate in Washington State.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Universal Press Syndicate "cleared" Ann Coulter of plagiarism charges this week. Coulter is guilty of being a despicable, lying, talentless, dumb, mean-spirited and bigoted skank ... but apparently she's not
a plagiarist. Just my leftist take on it.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.12.06 | Permalink |

TUESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
GEORGIA - GOVERNOR - DEM PRIMARY: Lieutenant Governor Mark Taylor - 49%, Secretary of State Cathy Cox - 41%. (Insider Advantage).
GEORGIA - LT. GOVERNOR - GOP PRIMARY: State Senator Casey Cagle (R) - 37%, former Christian Coalition Executive Director Ralph Reed - 37%. (Insider Advantage).
MICHIGAN - US SENATE - GOP PRIMARY: Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard - 51%, Evangelical Bishop Keith Butler - 25%. (WDIV-TV/SurveyUSA).
VIRGINIA - US HOUSE - CD-5: Congressman Virgil Goode (R) - 49%, winegrower Al Weed (D) - 35%. (Zogby).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.11.06 | Permalink |

US HOUSE: THIS AND THAT (BUT MAINLY STUFF ABOUT MONEY).
INDIANA - CD-8: Congressman John Hostettler (R) -- a perennial Democratic target -- is yet again facing fundraising problems. In the most recent quarter Hostettler raised $118,000 and challenger Vanderburgh Copunty Sheriff Brad Ellsworth (D) raised $681,000. Race Rating: Toss-Up.
NEW HAMPSHIRE - CD-1: State Representative Peter Sullivan (D) quit the race for Congress, citing both political and personal concerns.
PENNSYLVANIA - CD-6: Challenger and attorney Lois Murphy (D) raised $740,000 in the most recent quarter, versus $450,000 raised for Congressman Jim Gerlach (R) in the same period. Gerlach's total even included the money raised for him at an event headlined by President Bush. Murphy has $1.4 million cash-on-hand and the incumbent is showing $1.3 million. Race rating: Toss-Up.
WASHINGTON - CD-8: Challenger and former Microsoft executive Darcy Burner (D) surprised everyone with her recent fundraising. New financial reports show Burner has collected over $1 million in her race against freshman Congressman Dave Reichert (R). Race Rating: Leans GOP.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.11.06 | Permalink |

NEBRASKA: OSBORNE NOT INTERESTED IN WRITE-IN CAMPAIGN.
Despite a lawsuit filed by friends of Congressman Tom Osborne (R) seeking to allow Osborne to re-enter the gubernatorial race as a write-in, Osborne discounted any interest in the effort. Osborne lost the GOP gubernatorial primary to Governor Dave Heineman. Osborne told the AP on Monday he's "not interested in a write-in campaign" because "the people of Nebraska have spoken." Businessman David Hahn is the Democratic nominee, but currently has no chance of winning in November. Race rating: Safe GOP.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.11.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: the Democratic Presidential draft group New Jersey for Feingold; and attorney and Iraq War veteran Patrick Murphy, Democrat for Congress in Pennsylvania's CD-8.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Whatever.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.11.06 | Permalink |

MONDAY NEWS UPDATE.

P2008: LEADERSHIP PACS SPREADING THE WEALTH.
The Hotline reports the likely 2008 Democratic Presidential candidates are contributing large sums of money to Dems in key states in an effort to court early support. Senator John Kerry's PAC leads all other hopefuls, having collected nearly $14 million for candidates and state party organizations. Senator Hillary Clinton's PAC races $7.5 million; former Senator John Edwards' PAC is at $6.5 million; and former Governor Mark Warner's PAC is at "about $5 million." Warner's PAC is paying for a staffer in the Iowa Dem Party and another working on the staff of the New Hampshire Dem Party. Senator Evan Bayh's PAC us also funding a staffer with the NH Dems. All of the other PACs lag behind.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.10.06 | Permalink |

TEXAS: DeLAY READY TO JUMP BACK INTO CD-22 RE-ELECTION RACE.
Time magazine reports recently resigned Congressman Tom DeLay (R-TX) is preparing to jump back into the race for re-election if the US Court of Appeals declines to overturn the US District Court ruling prohibiting the Texas Republican Party from replacing DeLay on the ballot. "DeLay is planning an aggressive campaign to retake the House seat he quit in June," reported Time. DeLay, who is still awaiting trial on state corruption charges, has less than $1 million remaining in his campaign account.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.10.06 | Permalink |

KENTUCKY: GOP LEADERS ASK FLETCHER TO DROP '07 RE-ELECTION BID.
The news just keeps getting worse for embattled Governor Ernie Fletcher (R). First, Fletcher was indicted a few months ago on three misdemeanor charges related to engaging in unlawful hiring practices. Then Lieutenant Governor Steve Pence announced in May he would not run again with Fletcher -- and may challenge him in the primary. Despite that, Fletcher last month announced his candidacy for re-election in 2007 and named State Finance Secretary Robbie Rudolph as his new Lieutenant Governor runningmate. The move helped Fletcher raise some money, but did not stop former supporters from jumping ship. According to the Louisville Courier-Journal, the list of Republicans calling on Fletcher to retire is growing. State Senate President David Williams declined to attend Fletcher's kick-off, explaining: "I'm not in the habit of endorsing people who do not appear to be re-electable." Franklin County Republican Party Chairman Stuart Victor called on Fletcher to retire. Kelly Downard, the GOP nominee for Louisville Mayor, announced he would not support Fletcher. US Senator Mitch McConnell has declined to offer Fletcher any public words of support. Jefferson County GOP Chairman Jack Richardson is the latest to abandon Fletcher, saying that Fletcher is "delusional" if he thinks he can win re-election. "It's embarrassing and it's tiring to constantly have to come up with less than candid remarks defending him ... I like Ernie Fletcher as a man. He's not corrupt, he's inept," said Richardson. "We will remain focused on the task of making Kentucky a better place to work and live. We are not going to let petty politics slow us down," responded Fletcher's spokesman.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.10.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: teacher and peace activist Michael Berg, Green for US House in Delaware.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Political courage points to Attorney General Eliot Spitzer (D-NY), who said this weekend he will support legislation to legalize same-sex marriage. His opponent, former State Assembly Minority Leader John Faso (R-NY), praised the NY Court of Appeals for declining last week to recognize same-sex marriages but told the AP "we can come together to find other ways to provide gay and lesbians in long-term committed relationships the same economic rights and legal protections." Meanwhile, Senator Hillary Clinton managed to anger her gay supporters by adopting a stance nearly identical with Faso's position. Clinton told reporters she supported "full equality for people in committed [same-sex] relationships." Yet, when asked if "full equality" mean support for same sex marriages, Clinton's spokesperson said Clinton supports only civil unions for same-sex couples.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.10.06 | Permalink |

WEEKEND NEWS UPDATE.

SOUTH CAROLINA: GOP SENATOR JUMPS INTO GOV RACE AS INDEPENDENT.
In a follow-up to our story yesterday, conservative State Senator Jake Knotts (R) on Friday announced "I'm running" as an Independent against Governor Mark Sanford (R). Knotts is a former State Representative, a retired police officer and a Vietnam War veteran. He is also a close friend of Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer (R), who -- like Knotts -- is a frequent critic of Sanford. Knotts must now collect 10,000 signatures by July 17 -- but look for Democrats to help him get those signatures. Knotts is clearly running in an effort to cripple Sanford's campaign. Knotts told The State newspaper that he will support State Senator Tommy Moore (D) over Sanford if he doesn’t qualify for the ballot. In launching his campaign, Knotts made it clear his fire will be aimed at Sanford by describing his campaign as a fight between "the privileged class versus real ordinary people ... I eat in places where real people eat. I hang where the real people hang. And I ain’t talking about high-class restaurants where the Governor hangs."
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.08.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: Hennepin County Attorney Amy Klobuchar, Democrat for US Senate in Minnesota; and State Assemblyman Jonathan Bing, Democrat for re-election in New York.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Have at it.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.08.06 | Permalink |

FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE.

TEXAS: FED COURT BLOCKS PLAN TO REPLACE DeLAY ON CD-22 BALLOT.
US District Court Judge Sam Sparks ruled Thursday that the Texas Republican Party is prohibited from replacing recently resigned Congressman Tom DeLay (R-TX or VA) on the November ballot. Applying Texas law, the court found DeLay intentionally withdrew from the contest -- and did not, as the GOP insisted, become disqualified or ineligible because he switched his voter registration to Virginia -- which means the GOP must either put DeLay back on the ballot or go without any nominee in the CD-22 race against former Congressman Nick Lampson (D) and businessman Bob Smither (Libertarian). The Court Order also enjoined the Texas Secretary of State from replacing DeLay on the ballot. The GOP vows to appeal the ruling. If the GOP loses the appeal, DeLay will have to decide whether to return to the race as a candidate or leave the Republicans without any nominee. Reporters from the Houston Chronicle tracked DeLay down for a comment -- and found him at the Texas home. "I don't do [interviews] -- not at my house," said DeLay to the reporters, as he closed the door on them. Judge Sparks, FYI, was appointed to the bench by President George HW Bush and is a close friend of State Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn. Until and unless the ruling is reversed, we're changing our race rating here to: Leans DEM.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.07.06 | Permalink |

SOUTH CAROLINA: GOP SENATOR MAY MAKE INDY RUN FOR GOVERNOR.
Conservative State Senator Jake Knotts (R) -- a frequent critic of Governor Mark Sanford (R) -- said Thursday he may jump into the race against Sanford as an Independent. Sanford has a hostile relationship with the state legislature's Republican leaders, Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer, and several other statewide GOP nominees. Knotts, a close friend of Bauer, is apparently angry that Sanford tried to intervene in the GOP run-off to defeat Bauer. "I've had encouragement from [Republican] Senators and from other House members. Their basic concern is having somebody they can work with ... If I jump in, it will be to win and with a chance to win," said Knotts to the AP. "It's no news that Jake Knotts is not a fan of the Governor," said Sanford's campaign manager. To get on the ballot, Knotts must collect 10,000 signatures of registered voters by July 17. If Knotts enters the race, the GOP split could provide a major opening for State Senator Tommy Moore (D) -- as Moore would only need a plurality to win.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.07.06 | Permalink |

NEBRASKA: OSBORNE SUPPORTERS ATTEMPTING A HAIL MARY PLAY.
Friends and associates of Congressman Tom Osborne (R) -- who unexpectedly lost the GOP gubernatorial primary to Governor Dave Heineman -- are seeking to give Osborne a second shot at Heineman in November. Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Rodgers -- who played football under Osborne in the early 1970s -- and Nebraska football team trainer Doak Ostergard are plaintiffs in a lawsuit seeking to strike down an existing state election law. The state law prohibits a candidate who lost in a partisan primary from running in the general election as a write-in candidate. These Osborne friends believe he has extensive backing from Democrats, who could not cast ballots for him in the recent GOP primary. "I have no knowledge of a write-in campaign to elect me as Governor. I have not given any encouragement to such effort. As nice as it is of my former players and associates to be concerned about my future, none of their efforts have involved consultation with me," said Osborne in a written statement to the Lincoln Journal-Star. While noting he was not part of the effort to change the law, the newspaper also said Osborne "did not seek to squelch the possibility of a write-in campaign." Businessman David Hahn is the Democratic nominee, but currently has no chance of winning in November.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.07.06 | Permalink |

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
CALIFORNIA - GOVERNOR: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) - 44%, State Treasurer Phil Angelides (D) - 37%. (Los Angeles Times).

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.07.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: businesswoman and State Representative Monica Lindeen, Democrat for Congress in Montana.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
The Georgia Supreme Court reinstated the state's ban on gay marriage on Thursday ... Also on Thursday, New York's highest court ruled 4-2 that same sex marriages will not be recognized in the state. The NY judges rule the law limiting marriage to one man and one woman is constitutional ... This means 45 states in the US have now barred same-sex marriage through statutes or constitutional amendments ... That said, permanently moving to Canada is starting to look better and better to me each day.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.07.06 | Permalink |

THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE.

LIBERTARIAN PARTY: MODERATES SEIZE CONTROL, HARDCORES BOLT.
The Libertarian Reform Caucus (LRC) -- an "outsider" group of pragmatic moderates within one of America's two largest third parties -- won a dramatic upset victory at this weekend's Libertarian National Convention. "Fringe politics does not work in the United States. A political party must appeal to a plurality of voters (effectively, at least 40%) in some districts in order to win elections .. In other words, for the Libertarian Party to be effective, it must appeal to the top 20-30% of freedom-lovers. Appealing to the tiny minority of freedom-lovers who want no government at all, or something very close to that, is a recipe for failure. The platform and message of the Libertarian Party is extreme, sacrificing practicality and political appeal in favor of philosophical consistency with a single axiom. As such, the party currently appeals only to a tiny fraction of the voting public ... We, the members of the Libertarian Reform Caucus believe that America needs a real libertarian party, a party that promotes liberty while being conscious of political reality, a party designed to win elections and begin rolling back excess government now. In particular, the party needs: A platform that proposes a realistic vision for the next few years, as opposed to an idealistic vision of a libertarian future ... A platform based on the realization that there are other important values in addition to the non-initiation of force. Freedom is extremely valuable, but it is not the only value," explained the LRC's website. At the convention, the LRC succeeded in gutting all but four of the party's longstanding platform planks -- over 90% of the party's original platform -- and replaced them with a shorter, more moderate libertarian platform of four old planks and nine new ones. No previous LP convention had ever before repealed any of the party's original platform planks. "We never expected this kind of success to be had at this convention ... The delegates were obviously tired of seeing the party continue being a minor player in the political arena. At the convention many delegates spontaneously jumped on board the reform bandwagon," said an LRC spokesman. Many LRC supporters threw their support behind former party national treasurer Bill Redpath of Virginia, electing him the new National Chairman with 64% of the vote. Redpath is a fairly moderate LP leader who is committed maintaining the party's longtime 50-state ballot access strategy. LRC activist Chuck Moulton was elected LP Vice Chairman with 63%. Traditional, hardcore libertarian ideologues were infuriated by the LRC's victory. Arizona gubernatorial nominee Barry Hess angrily told the Free Libertarian blogsite that he and Arizona state party would not agree to "water down the essential principles espoused in the [old] platform's language ... we do not compromise our principles." Hess warned the LRC victory could lead to a major split in the party, spurring splinter groups to break from the national LP. "The neocon traitors who run this country infiltrated the Libertarian Party (under the guise of being moderates or libertarians-lite) and deleted most of the platform planks, including those against military interventionism and secession," wrote former LP DC Chair Carol Moore on her website. Many of the hardcore LP'ers
complain the LRC is trying to turn the Libertarian Party into a socially libertarian version of the Republican Party. The schism has already begun this week, with Missouri activist Tom Knapp already attempting to launch a new hardcore libertarian entity named the Boston Tea Party.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.06.06 | Permalink |

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
HAWAII - US SENATE - DEM PRIMARY: US Senator Dan Akaka - 51%, Congressman Ed Case - 40%. (Honolulu Advertiser/Ward Research).
NEW MEXICO - US SENATE: US Senator Jeff Bingaman (D) - 59%, physician Allen McCullough (R) - 33%. (Rasmussen Reports).

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.06.06 | Permalink |

ILLINOIS: THIRD PARTY NOMINATING PETITIONS CHALLENGED.
Both major parties in Illinois are preparing for a close gubernatorial race between Governor Rod Blagojevich (D) and State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka (R). That's the likely reason individuals filed challenges with the State Board of Elections to knock the Constitution, Green and Independence nominees off the ballot. The State Board already disqualified the conservative slate of candidates running under the Constitution Party banner, after scrutinizing and invalidating some of the submitted signatures. The Independence Party candidates -- Nader supporters who split from the Greens during the 2004 elections -- are likely to meet the same fate as the Constitution Party slate. A challenge was also filed against the Green Party slate. The Greens, who had anticipated the attack, submitted an excess number of signatures to ensure they will probably survive the challenge.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.06.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: librarian and progressive activist Jim Brown, Green candidate for Congress in New York's CD-3; and Congressman Rob Simmons, Republican for re-election in Connecticut's CD-2.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Convicted Enron felon Ken Lay died Wednesday ... tensions remain high between Israeli and the Palestinian governments ... and the fall-out from the North Korea missile tests continue.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.06.06 | Permalink |

WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

MARYLAND: CANDIDATE FILING CLOSES.
Candidate filing closed this week in Maryland, creating some very crowded contests. In the open US Senate race, 17 Democrats, 10 Republicans and a Green filed paperwork to run -- although the only three candidates with any real chance of winning the race are Congressman Ben Cardin (D), former Congressman Kweisi Mfume (D) and Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele (R). If Mfume and Steele win their respective primaries, it would be the first time in US history that primary voters in both major party selected African-American nominees. US Senator Paul Sarbanes (D) is retiring. The gubernatorial contest will not see any primaries, as all four candidates are unopposed for their respective party nominations. Another race worth watching is the reelection contest of State Comptroller (and former Governor) Don Schaefer (D) -- as he's facing two serious primary challengers. In the open CD-3 race, 18 candidates filed. The winner of the Dem primary will win the CD-3 seat, vacated by Cardin to make his Senate run. Click here to view all of the Maryland candidates (and links to their websites).
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.05.06 | Permalink |

FLORIDA: OOPS, HE DID IT AGAIN.
State CFO Tom Gallagher (R) suffered bad press to his gubernatorial campaign last year when it was reported Gallagher -- as a member of the State Cabinet -- voted on matters affecting a small amount of stock he purchased as a day trader. It turns out the conflicts of interest were not isolated incidents. The Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel reported Tuesday that Gallagher voted in 2005 to rank lands owned by the St. Joe Company a priority for state environmental land acquisition. Gallagher failed to disclose at the time he ranked the properties that he owned 4,000 shares in the paper manufacturing and property development company, worth around $270,000. Gallagher declined to comment, but his campaign manager said Gallagher's ownership interest was "well below the 1% threshold [of total outstanding shares of the company] considered necessary to reveal conflict of interest questions under state ethics law."

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.05.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: the Democratic activist group FiredUpMissouri.com.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Tuesday was a holiday (and my birthday) so I really didn't feel like spending a hours on my birthday evening writing a lengthy post for Wednesday. Thus, we'll be back with our normal, full-length postings on Thursday.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.05.06 | Permalink |

TUESDAY NEWS UPDATE.

CONNECTICUT: LIEBERMAN TO PETITION ONTO GEN BALLOT AS INDEPENDENT.
As has been speculated for weeks, the Hartford Courant reported Monday that US Senator Joe Lieberman (D) "will petition for a place on the November ballot as an 'Independent Democrat'." Lieberman -- an outspoken supporter of the Iraq War -- is facing an aggressive Dem primary challenge from wealthy cable TV company founder and peace activist Ned Lamont. "I've been a proud, loyal and progressive Democrat since John F. Kennedy inspired my generation of Americans into public service and I will stay a Democrat, whether I am the Democratic party's nominee or a petitioning Democratic candidate on the November ballot," explained Lieberman, who said he would caucus with the Senate Democrats even if he is reelected as an Independent.
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.04.06 | Permalink |

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Happy Independence Day!
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.04.06 | Permalink |

MONDAY NEWS UPDATE.

BY THE NUMBERS: LATEST INDEPENDENT NUMBERS.
FLORIDA - US SENATE: US Senator Bill Nelson (D) - 59%, Congresswoman Katherine Harris (R) - 26%. (Quinnipiac University).
FLORIDA - US SENATE - GOP PRIMARY:
Congresswoman Katherine Harris - 35%, attorney Will McBride - 16%, developer Peter Monroe - 4%, retired Navy Officer LeRoy Collins Jr. - 3%. (Quinnipiac University).
MARYLAND - US SENATE - DEM PRIMARY:
Former Congressman Kweisi Mfume - 31%, Congressman Ben Cardin - 25%. (Washington Post).
MINNESOTA - GOVERNOR: Attorney General Mike Hatch (DFL) - 47%, Governor Tim Pawlenty (R) - 42%. (Rasmussen Reports).

MINNESOTA - US SENATE: Hennepin County Attorney Amy Klobuchar (DFL) - 47%, Congressman Mark Kennedy (R) - 44%. (Rasmussen Reports).
NEW MEXICO - GOVERNOR: Governor Bill Richardson (D) - 56%, former State GOP Chair John Dendahl (R) - 32%. (Rasmussen Reports).

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.03.06 | Permalink |

SEND A PIN = GET A FREE PLUG HERE.
Here's my open offer for every campaign (and campaign supporter): send me a button or pin from the Governor, US Senate, Congressional, Statewide Office, etc., campaign you are involved in -- feel free to add a sticker and brochure -- and I'll place a link to official campaign site here on our homepage in a daily "thank you" note. My address: Ron Gunzburger, 409 NE 17 Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301. TODAY'S THANKS GO TO: Attorney General Jay Nixon, Democrat for Missouri Governor 2008; FunEThings.com for the buttons; and businesswoman and radio talk show host Pat LaMarche, Green Independent for Maine Governor.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
In the spirit of the four-day holiday weekend, today's postings are rather sparse. I'm sorta taking the day off.

Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.03.06 | Permalink |

WEEKEND OPEN THREAD.

FREE SPEECH ZONE.
Happy Canada Day!
Posted by Ron Gunzburger - 07.01.06 | Permalink |

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