Connecticut Politics and Elections: Coverage, Analysis, Maps and Commentary
Following up on New Haven Alderwoman Joyce Chen's earlier fit of idiocy (changing her party affiliation from Green to Democrat without telling either party, then leaving the country), both Chen and her Democratic primary opponent Gina Calder were eager to publicly embarrass themselves in an interview with the New Haven Advocate.Chen, who had voted against a domestic partnership bill, requested the meeting to discuss her position on gay rights, but insisted that Calder be present. Both then refused to state their positions after repeated questions. Here's a typical excerpt:Trying to reign in the conversation, I asked them point-blank where they stand on civil unions and gay marriage."I'm not going to discuss that," said Chen. And yet, amazingly, she insisted, "I'm not trying to dodge the issue."Calder was equally evasive."Before we get into this," she said, tapping at her watch, "it's knocking on 8:30."The eavesdropper had heard enough. He got up, walked over, and said, "You're both lousy candidates. You're gutless."I pushed the stunned candidates one more time, asking for a simple yes or no answer. Calder smiled and rolled her eyes around in thought. She was silent for at least 10 seconds before saying, "I'm in support of equal rights across the board, and making sure there is a level playing field."She refused to elaborate, then left.In Calder's absence, Chen said, "I believe that all couples should have all the benefits to live wholesome lives."I asked her if that means she supports civil unions or gay marriage."I want to call somebody to get some advice on whether I should answer this question," Chen said.She rushed outside, cell phone in hand. When she returned a minute later, she had plenty to saybut never answered the question. I have no involvement or agenda in New Haven politics, but it doesn't take a native to recognize political cowardice and bigotry. If they oppose civil unions and gay marriage, they should just acquire spines and say it.If you support marriage equality and want to encourage these knuckleheads to stop running away from their gay constituents, here's how to contact them:firstname.lastname@example.org@ginacalder.com
Wow. That is pretty gutless.I remember when Joyce Chen was the hero of the Greens. I can't imagine that what's left of them are very happy with her now.
ghengis -are you getting on the podcast tonight?
The Hope Out Loud Peace and Music Festival is going on this Sunday afternoon at Bushnell Park in Hartford.
Gina Calder is a less than stellar candidate...Miss Calder graduated from Yale in May 2003. Yet despite living and working in New Haven, (for a year and a half past graduation), Gina's November 2004 was cast in New Jersey, via an illegal absentee ballot! The sad reality is that despite six plus years in New Haven, Gina's first New Haven vote at the Goffe Street firehouse, will be,incredibly, -- for herself!Couple this with the fact her car is illegally registered in New Jersey, and also that Gina still doesn't have a CT Driver's License, and you have a good picture of what doesn't matter to the status quo in New Haven.Integrity is a joke. Loyalty is everything.Calder is another rubber stamp for the Mayor. Joyce Chen stands dangerously against the machine.
Oh, say it ain't so Joe.
I've just stumbled across this here blog and thought I would stick my tuppenceworth inNow that's what I call entertainmentwe're witnessing history in the makingwritten by the winners and thepeople who say wherever thereis money to be made it'sall there for the takingYou may have read about it inthe papersthere's kids trained on arcadegames and space invaderswho get target practice at homeaiming pistols at theirplaystations, and now they'retaking all their orders fromGeorge Walker Texas Rangerknowing that if they don't doas they're told they'll getcalled traitors, even if it meansthey'll be hated by their neighboursbut why on earth should they carethey're laughing in the face of dangerdoing what they do best just tomake the world a little saferSo when they get killed crippledor decorated and some of the soldiersstart to wonder where thehell the parade is, they'll have tolearn the hard way that it's beengoing on for ages, that there'slots of money to be made in a warthat ragesSo who pays the price?Who's the hole in their pocket?Because someone's loss is alwayssomeone else's profitIt happens right in front of usbut we don't watch itwhilst the shit Bruce Willis filmsmake a killing at the box officeI don't mind preaching to the choirwhen freedom fries in friendlyfire, time after time it's nosurprise, it's an eye for an eyeuntil we all go blindThis summer's biggest blockbustersdon't have big name stars or muchof a budget, just a bunch of banditswith camcorders and swords andsome heads to chop off on thecutting room floorWe never give in to kidnappers'demands, if we don't pay themransom we won't look that badbecause we know that the rest ofthe world understands and togetherwe can all wash the blood from our handsBut as for the arabs we have otherplans, they'll be smoked out ofevery right hole in the landtill we're sure that they're all dead and buried in sandwhere one day our big businessskyscrapers will standit's hard not to seperate factfrom fiction when faced with amonkey like man on a missiona leader who learned all abouthis religion from Mel Gibsonfilms with his evengalismwhose not capable oftaking his own decisionswhether it's abortion or killingpeople in prisonsHe's about the right size anddaddy's shoes fit himif he's going down he's takingall of us with himI don't mind preaching to the choirwhen freedom fries in friendlyfire, time after time it's nosurprise, it's an eye for an eyetill we all go blindCameras can shoot nothing worsethan the truth, it's a tooth fora tooth, we've the pictures forproof, and it's coming home toroost, so that's all left to dois dig up Bob Hope for a moraleboostYeah GI Joe is gonna have to dosome explaining, coz photos ofabuse by troops sold a load ofnewspapers and caused a sensationacross all of the stationsJust think what a third world warwould do for the ratingsyou may have read about it in thenewspapers, there's kids trainedon arcade games in space invaderwho get target practice at home aiming pistols at theirplaystations, and now they'retaking orders from George WalkerTexas RangerLeo Crawley
I'm not sure if people saw this article in the New York Times today about the Patriot Act Lawsuit:"BRIDGEPORT, Conn., Sept. 9 - A federal judge ruled on Friday that the government cannot continue to bar the representatives of a nonprofit organization from speaking out about the sweeping powers that the antiterrorism law known as the USA Patriot Act gives investigators seeking library records."..."The judge, however, granted a stay along with her ruling giving the United States attorney's office until Sept. 20 to persuade the federal Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to overturn her decision. If that court fails to act quickly, she wrote, then the plaintiffs would be free to identify themselves and comment on some aspects of the case."
Saw Paul Vance yesterday at the Bethlehem Fair with some volunteers handing out pins and flyers.
Did you see John Orman dropped his primary challenge to Joe Lieberman? Apparently he only raised $1000 to Lieberman's $3.8 million, though I'm sure that was the whole point he was trying to demonstrate.
A hint of leadership from a Dem ?You decide.Dear Friends,This weekend the Hartford Courant published an op-ed I wrote regarding our failed policies in Iraq and the unwillingness of the Republican controlled Congress to enforce any real accountability. It is copied below. As always, please continue to visit our website at www.joecourtney.com for the latest campaign news and information!All the Best,Joe Courtney--------------------------------------------------------------------------------Disastrous Mismanagement By: Joe Courtney On Oct. 3, 1993, a team of U.S. Army Special Forces executed a daring and dangerous operation in the heart of the war-torn Mogadishu district in the country of Somalia. Their mission was to capture leaders of a local warlord's militia that had been the source of violent insurgency. As the best-seller-turned-movie "Black Hawk Down" chronicled, this mission turned deadly for the 160 men who made up the assault force. Two helicopters were shot down and three others were damaged by rocket-propelled grenades fired by the militia. The ensuing battle that followed resulted in the deaths of 18 U.S. soldiers and the wounding of 73. In the wake of this disaster, a congressional investigation swung into action, and then-Secretary of Defense Les Aspin was grilled about the planning and execution of military policy in Somalia. The hearings uncovered the fact that Aspin had rejected a request by Gen. Colin Powell in September 1993 for tanks and armored equipment, leaving American troops with inadequate weapons and protection to face a lethal environment. Aspin made it clear that it was his decision, and not the White House's, to refuse armor reinforcements. Shortly thereafter, Aspin resigned. Given the recent history of events in Iraq - one disastrous policy miscalculation after another by the Department of Defense - the example of governmental accountability in 1993 should be instructive. Before the invasion of Iraq, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Eric K. Shinseki, made it clear that an occupation would require "several hundred thousand" troops. He was exiled from the Pentagon. Since the invasion of Iraq, our troops have been forced to fashion "hillbilly armor" (a term used by the troops) from junk piles. There has been no accounting for the inadequate protection of our men and women in uniform, nor the rank profiteering that contractors have cashed in on. This shameful lack of planning reoccurred Aug. 3 when an antiquated, slow-moving amphibious vehicle built for beach landings ended up as a death trap for 14 Marines from Ohio in the desert area of Haditha. The Defense Department's bunker mentality was on display again last month, when the Army Corps of Engineers demoted Bunnatine Greenhouse, a career civil servant who had the courage to testify to Congress that a five-year, no-bid, sole-source contract for work in Iraq was awarded to Halliburton Corp. in violation of the Pentagon's normal contract process. For the American people trying to understand what the administration's plans are, and what the time frame for our involvement is, the best we get are contradictory statements from commanders in the field: One day they state we will be sending tens of thousands of troops home by next spring; the next day, that our troop levels will increase to 160,000 by January. Despite tragic, deadly and costly mistakes over the past four years, Congress has not risen to its duty, as it did in 1993, to demand answers from the decision-makers responsible. The Bush administration only speaks to the American people in carefully controlled political and media environments where its policies are never seriously challenged. The need to change direction and leadership from the stay-the-course treadmill is obvious. One common denominator of the string of failures is Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, whose blunders make Les Aspin's transgressions pale. The time has long since come and gone for the Rumsfeld reign of errors to end.
Does Joe Courtney say whether he opposed invading Iraq in the first place, or is his opposition only (in Kerry-like fashion) to the manner in which the invasion and occupation was implemented? I don't see anything on in his issues page that would suggest an answer.
For the record, Courtney said in 2002 he would have voted for the Iraq War resolution.
Ebpie,Interesting. Can you locate/post the quote? I'm not surprised: that was the tenor of the times.Nate,Saw about Orman. Joe-haters need to find another candidate... but I don't think Mr. Blumenthal is interested.
Following up on Chen and Calder's non-explanations of their positions on gay rights, the New Haven Independent has also tried to smoke them out, to no avail.
Perhaps it's time to start including "None of the Above" on ballots.
The following is from the October 22nd issue of the Hartford Courant. Courtney is responding to a question from the editorial board. I got this information off of www.nexis.com. I agree that we cannot ignore the threat posed by Saddam Hussein. A unilateral strike against Iraq, without the strong support of our allies, poses many more risks than if we had a strong, international coalition to help shoulder the burdens of military action. That is why I was disappointed Congress defeated an amendment to authorize the use of U.S. armed forces only to enforce a U.N. Security Council resolution to eliminate Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program. However, even though the amendment I supported failed, I would have supported the president, voting to authorize force, trusting the president to be cautious about placing our armed forces in harm's way.
I should note that was the October 22nd, 2002 issue of the Hartford Courant.
Good research, Ebpie.It's worth noting for those who don't have LexisNexis that all Connecticut residents with a library card have access to the Courant's archives going back to 1990. Simply go to ICONN.org and type in your library barcode. Click on "Login." On the next screen, click on "Link to Individual Databases." The Courant's archives will be on the list that pops up.This is a useful archive because LexisNexis does not archive the Courant this far back. The watered-down academic version of LN that I have only archives six months' worth of it.
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