Friday, May 26, 2006

CT Senator - The Debate About $; Lamont Wins MoveOn.org Online Primary

Over the last two days, we have been treated to two articles in the Courant:

May 23 - Foes Clash Over Cash - Mark Pazniokas

May 25 - Small Donors Aid Lamont - Mark Pazniokas

The first focuses on the Lieberman campaign making an issue of Lamont's personal wealth and his willingness to contribute to his own campaign. Here are the interesting bits (without much context, I encourage you to click on the link):

"I am confident they want as their senator somebody who has had the experience of growing up in this state, living the lives they have lived," Lieberman said.

...

"We started nearly $5 million behind an 18-year incumbent," Lamont said in a statement e-mailed to reporters. "My contribution amplifies the voices of thousands of our supporters who want to change our priorities in Washington."

...

"Having between $90 million and $300 million, Ned Lamont can not only try to buy a seat from Connecticut in the U.S. Senate, he can probably buy a seat in a couple of other states if he wanted," Lieberman said.

...

Tom Swan, Lamont's campaign manager, said his candidate is not taking special-interest money, unlike Lieberman.

"The additional $500,000 is still way less money than what Joe Lieberman has raised from Washington, D.C., special interests," Swan said. "It's not in Joe Lieberman's interest to make an issue of sources of campaign contributions."


This is an interesting strategy by Lieberman's team, that I, personally, don't think will resonate. First of all, much of the state population-wise (from Stamford to roughly Danbury in one direction and New Haven in the other) are in the NYC media market and, in the last 6 years or so have watched John Corzine spend far more than $1 million of his personal money to "buy" a senate seat and than the governor's mansion (NJ). The politically engaged Democrat will look at the amount, shrug, and vote their values. The non-politically engaged will not be voting in the Democratic primary.

Second, and unfortunately, this is the way the system works. And what a perverse system it is when the very rich guy who spends his fortune actually smells cleaner than the rich guy who spends PAC and corporate bundles! Given Lieberman's reliance on out-of-state sources of money in PAC and large corporate bundles, I think he treads down this road at his own peril.

Finally, I don't (and I imagine the average nutmegger would agree) need to hear this: "I am confident they want as their senator somebody who has had the experience of growing up in this state, living the lives they have lived" out of the mouth of someone who is worth between $431,059 and $1,675,000 (source: 2004 Financial Disclosure Report) to attack someone who is worth between $90 million and $300 million. [For the record, the Courant article says that Senator Lieberman is worth "no more than $940,000, based on his financial disclosure statement." Which disclosure statement is not noted.]

With all due respect to the Senator, he is not personally aware of the effect of revaluation (my house doubled) and the new mill rate (down about 2 mills) will have on my ability to pay my property taxes (hint: not good). Nor is he personally aware of how the bankruptcy bill, that he voted against but, when the chips were down, he voted for cloture, will effect nutmeggers who will have to declare under the new rules.

Leaving aside the very rich and the merely rich, none of these guys is like the average Connecticut voter; we are free to vote our values.

Also, a little post-convention spin:

Lieberman downplayed losing one-third of the Democratic convention vote over the weekend to Lamont.

"I will take a 2-1 victory, which is what I was lucky to have at the state convention, any day and in any campaign in which I am involved," Lieberman said.


This is just laughable. Pre-convention, they were setting the bar impossibly high for Lamont (35%) and he exceeded all reasonable expectations and almost met their unreasonable ones. When that 2-1 margin was announced, every Lieberman supporter got nervous.

The second article talks about Lamont's fundraising from individuals, especially stemming from his endorsement by Democracy For America (now raised over $60,000 for the Lamont campaign). Here are the money graphs:

Tom Swan, the manager of Lamont's campaign, said Lamont has raised $620,000 from individuals, in addition to the $1 million provided by the candidate.

Lieberman, a three-term incumbent, has raised about $7 million since his re-election in 2000.


Make this point number 4 above to why Lieberman's strategy of making an issue of Lamont's wealth is risky: After contributing a million ($1,000,000!) of his own money to the campaign, he is still has about 5.375 million dollars ($5,375,000!) raised less than the Lieberman campaign. Buying the election? Or the biggest longshot underdog in recent memory?

As I wrote this, the fundraising story got a little sunnier for the Lamont campaign. In the MoveOn.org online primary, he took 85% of the vote to Lieberman's 14% (I received an email, the press release is not currantly online). MoveOn now will jump into the fray on the Lamont side, presumably with fundraising emails and issue advocacy ads. It will be very interesting to see how much cash the campaign brings in as a result of this endorsement and whether any MoveOn ads are played and their effectiveness. [The MoveOn endorsement is really seperate news and I will do a seperate post on it later, but it was relevant here so I had to mention it.]

Sources:

Courant May 23, 2006 - Foes Clash Over Cash - Mark Pazniokas

Courant May 25, 2006 - Small Donors Aid Lamont - Mark Pazniokas

Journal Inquirer May 18, 2006 - Out-of-staters boost Lieberman warchest in April; Lamont late to file - Don Michak

May 24, 2006 - How Much Are YOU Worth, Senator Lieberman? - Branford Boy

Joe Lieberman's 2004 FDR - OpenSecrets.org

May 26, 2006 - MoveOn.org Press Release - Lamont Wins MoveOn Endorsement for U.S. Senate

69 comments:

BRubenstein said...

Gabe..great post !!!!!!!!!!!

I believe the recent fuss over who is wealthy ( one is rich and the other very rich) is a canard. The real issue about money is where you get it from in the campaign. Lamont mostly gets his from small donor's and himself.Lieberman gets his from the special interests, who will have access and alot of influence over him if he wins,while Lamont will be influenced by the small donors.

Mostly folks will vote about the Iraq War ( i know i will) and other issues as those issues effect them personally and otherwise.Lieberman can "spin" anything he wants to..all day long...but a large % of registered democrats are long since against this terrible war in which most of us feel Lieberman was a complient leader in getting us involved in Iraq. No amount of "bleach" will wash away the stain.

truth squad said...

Gabe, I for one want to see public financing. it's long overdue. however, the point that i want to challenge you on is that there is a large difference between someone who grew up middle class like lieberman and a trust fund growing up experience like ned. doesnt make him a bad guy, but does make his life experiences different and i think for balance that distinction should be made. anf further, there is a large difference between $940,000 and $90million. either way, across the country, the money spent on political campaigns would be much better spent educating our children.

bluecoat said...

Looking at this from a purely voting turnout numbers perspective; I think the cable guy will advance in the primary because the suburban turnout is usually greater - and the suburbs appears to be where his greater support is.

TrueBlueCT said...

Truthy--
How much does Mrs. Lieberman get paid as a corporate lobbyist for that nefarious firm Hill & Knowlton?

My guess is that she makes $400-$500,000/year peddling the Lieberman's influence. Certainly, as a Dem constituent of Joe's, I'd like a full disclosure concerning this abusive conflict of interest.

TrueBlueCT said...

REPUBLICANS LOVE JOE!

Houston's Philip Burguieres, heavy Republican donor, maxes out to Joe for $4200!

Palm Beach FL's Norman & Elinor Belfer gave $4000 to Bush in 2004, and now give $4000 more to Bush's favorite Democrat, Joe Lieberman.

UBS' employee John Baldo also maxes out to both Bush and Lieberman.

Westport's Barry and Eileen Blau are heavy hitters! $4000 for Bush, and now $8400 to Lieberman! Deep pockets love both Bush and Joe.

California's Lawrence Bond, yet another Bush donor giving $4200 to Lieberman!

Heh! A Zell Miller/Joe Lieberman donor! Gotta love Atlanta's Steven Berman!

Greenwich's Susanne Brody-- $2,000 to Shays, $4,000 to Lieberman. (Hey Susanne! Diane Farrell also endorsed Joe!)

Brooklyn's Boymelgreen family sends $6000 to Lieberman in three $2000 contributions!

Wow! Baltimore's Blum family hearts Joe to the tune of $20,200! (Cousins? I hope...)

Elyse and Andrew Barroway of Villanova PA give Lieberman four $2100 contributions. That's $8400 total from the "power couple"

Maureen Benofiel of Kirkland, WA antes up $4000. (psst, Maureen, you can still give another $200!)

NYC's Keith Barket sends Joe $4200 worth of love. An old classmate?

WHO OWNS OUR CT SENATOR?

Find out more by checking into Lieberman's FEC Donor List.

Gabe said...

Truth Squad -

From one supporter of public financing to another, I agree with you that there is a huge difference between 940k (or 430k or 1.4MM) and 90MM (or 300MM). That said, none of those amounts (that an individual is worth) is middle class. As I wrote, someone worth any of those amounts has no personal connection to my property taxes or to the changes in the bankruptcy law.

Either way, both of my main points stand (I think - reasonable people, as always can disagree):

1. The majority of nutmeggers (especially those that vote in the Democratic primary) will not be swayed by someone with more money than they have attacking a guy with even more money for closing the electoral money gap between them with his personal funds. This is not a good strategy.

2. Lieberman has a liability in the amount of out-of-state PAC and corporate bundled (and ordinary donors giving the max) he has raised, especially when contrasted with Lieberman's fundraising base of small donors from Connecticut. It makes the guy who is self financing look cleaner! At least we know he doesn't owe, for example, CitiBank, any favors.

Of course, this is the world we have chosen (to paraphrase the Godfather).

BRubenstein said...

Truthy..Count me in for public financed federal campaigns.

Trueblue..she prolly gets closer to 250k a year..and to the best of my knowledge and belief,HER assets are not part of her husbands financial disclosure...nor are either forced to disclose what they will inherit if a relative has died and left them money...until its finally probabted and distributed.

It would be interesting to see if any of his relatives are living off the federal,state or city government payroll or have jobs from high donr's and/or fundraisers, and non-profits he influences.

bluecoat said...

I don't like public financing of campaigns but I do think it reasonable to limit what a candidate can rake in from donors outside of his/her constituent geographical boundaries.

cgg said...

Nice analysis Gabe.

Gabe said...

Thanks, CGG.

bluecoat said...

I thought I would be obnoxious and post this here on the Rowland Relld days Rowland Friends Testify In Senick Trial in today's Courant. Whether or not the high ranking Trooper broke the law he definitley was living high on the hog courtesy of the state taxpayer - and he was not alone. Johhnny gave the state cops what they wanted and they left hin alone - even when Rhode Island gendarmes reportedly called them about the domestic violence call over on Block Island that never saw the light of day.

Derby Conservative said...

True Blue-

Republicans certainly do love Joe Lieberman...but we love Ned Lamont even more.

Also, since this is a "non-partisan" blog, Go Schlesinger...

mod.dem.like.jfk said...

To me, more important is why Lamont gave money to Liebermans 2006 re-election campaign. If he was that upset about the war that he was thinking about running, why give to Lieberman?

Trueblue argued before that its a drop in the bucket for a guy with pockets as deep as Lamont, and I guess that is true. Still, the point being is that he gave? Has a primary challenger ever given to the incumbent they were challenging before?

Also, I disagree Gabe. People I talk to in North Central CT, even Lamont supporters, are not comfortable with the feeling that the guy is a millionaire trying to buy his Senate seat. I do think it could be a liability for Lamont, especially if you tie in that he donated to Lieberman.

Here is a simple equation...

(LS + GMPA) x O = Primary Challenger


Where LS= Lieberman supporter (remember the Supreme Court has equated donating money with freedom of speech)

GMPA= Greenwich Millionaire with policical ambition

O= Opportunity (in this case with Anti-War Anti-Bush sentiment)

Primary Challenger= Ned Lamont

To Lamont supporters, Im not saying that there are not legitimate grievances that you should have with Lieberman, but I am saying, be carefull when someone taps into those feelings and doesn't have the personal history to back it up.

bluecoat said...

Lamont is about as sincere as you can get for a politician; he's smarter tha Joe but I stil have no idea what he - and not all the spinmeisters on here - means by 'universal healthcare' but I am not sure he does either - single payor???. And Schlesinger running because he thinks the Democrats will self destruct isn't much of a reason to vote for the guy.

BRubenstein said...

Bluecoat...Jim Wade an attorney in that trial has subpoened many ranking folks in the executive branch...and Rell is on his witness list..Wade also is a major DM supporter,fundraiser and donor...check CFIS and see...the bet here is that he is trying to muddy up Rell for DM ( assuming he wins)

You werent obnoxious so much as simplistic in your posting. ( no offense intended)

Gabe said...

Mod.Dem - Like I said, reasonable people can disagree...

Two points:

2. I think once all the information regarding contributions has filtered through the media, the dominant theme will be that he needed to contribute his own money because he started from scratch and his opponent, an 18 year incumbant, had a $7,000,000 war chest built up on the strength of out-of-state, PAC, and corporate bundled donations.

2. And this is the snarky one: Even if it is viewed as him "buying " the seat, at least he is buying it and not CitiBank, or all of the people from other states that TrueBlue mentioned above.

This whole debate, on sum, will do more to advance the cause of public financing of elections than it will help Lieberman.

A squared + B squared = C squared

Derby Conservative said...

"...And Schlesinger running because he thinks the Democrats will self destruct isn't much of a reason to vote for the guy."

C'mon Blue, are you saying that Alan doesn't brig anything to the table? He's certainly qualfied...Wharton School MBA and UCONN JD...when he was mayor of Derby, he walked into the biggest mess that the city had ever been in, right down to 2 police chiefs duking it out for power of the PD and cleaned it up in less than 2 years. He did such a good job in his 1st term, that he gained over 80% of the vote for his 2nd term, and that's in a town where Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-1! When he gets his message out, he will certainly give the eventual Democrat nominee a run for the seat.

TSCowperthwait said...

Contrary to popular opinion, not all Republicans love Joe Lieberman.

I would also like to see serious campaign finance reform. It is an issue that afflicts every candidate running against an incumbent.

Great post, Gabe. Keep up the nice work...

mod.dem.like.jfk said...

Bluecoat-I can't comment to Lamont's intelligence specifically, though I'd imagine he's pretty intelliget with his elite prep school education. In fact, my presumption of his intelligence is part of the basis for my above equation.

I'd be interested to know your basis for him being "smarter than Joe".

As for the health care part, a point I keep coming back to is that beside being For Health Care, Against the Alito Vote, and Against the War I know nothing about the guy. Those are all good things in my mind, but where is the policy behind them?

What does Lamont plan to do? What legislation will he introduce? How will he be for "good quality health care for all" and how will he "better spend the money we are wasting on the war here at home"?

Lamont has great soundbytes, but where is the substance?

Derby Conservative said...

TSC, when I said that Republicans love Joe, I certainly meant it with sarcasm. I've never voted for Joe and only love him for abandoning his base and throwing a big wrench in the works.

mod.dem.like.jfk said...

I like how I spelled intelligent in the last post. Hooray me.

BRubenstein said...

Bluecoat...Both Lamont and Lieberman went to ivy league schools..i'd venture to say that your comment " Lamont is smarter..." is wrong and just spin and certainly not up to your usual high posting standards.

bluecoat said...

BR: I was looking for a comment - and thanks for the political connection - it's unfortunate that if Wade wins it will look like the high ranking Trooper did nothing wrong.

and by obnoxoius, I meant that I was off the topic of the US Senate campaign.

truth squad said...

gabe, am thankful for your thoughtful post as it has resulted in a very productive (and civil) conversation. just want to clarify however in terms of what you say is a race featuring a rich person vs a richer person. yes, $940,000 is much more than I, or many others are worth, howevre, there is a major difference on how these two candidates grew up. my point wasnt to their difference in wealth now, although that is also very stark, it was to how they both grew up, one was middle class and one was born into a very very large family fortune. again, not makig him a bad guy, but he did see life differently than 99% of us growing up

bluecoat said...

BR: I'll admit I didn't look at their IQ tests or GPA's - not that I buy all that stuff anyway - just an off the cuff perception about the two - so I stand reprimanded.

Bush and Kerry both went to Yale and I thought Kerry applied his education better - how's that for another way to say I think Kerry is smarter than Bush?

TSCowperthwait said...

DC,

I got your sarcasm -- I wasn't intending my comment to be directed at your post. It was directed at the Dems who think that all Republicans love Joe.

bluecoat said...

DC says about Schlesinger When he gets his message out, he will certainly give the eventual Democrat nominee a run for the seat. and to that I say, I checked his web page and i am still waiting for his message, much like I am waiting for Lamont!!! I know who Joe is - he's a populist positioner.

Gabe said...

TSC and DC -

Love him or hate him, it is hard to see how, even if Lamont wins the primary and Lieberman runs as an independant, Schlesinger can possibly win this race.

disgruntled_republican said...

Gabe...

Good post. The discussion from it has actually inspired me to author a similar one of my own. Perhaps John Larson's "Synergy PAC" needs a lookie too. It's common knowledge that its from big money donors but I suppose it is ok for him, right truebluect?

Derby Conservative said...

bluecoat, allow me to assist you...Alan's preliminary positions can be found at http://www.schlesinger2006.com/index-3.html.

bluecoat said...

DC: it's easier to click on the link GC has to the right and i already did that. If you want to help your boy you may wish to click on the HElP tab GC has up at the top so you can learn how to embed a link.

And like i said I checked his web page and i am still waiting for his message,

TSCowperthwait said...

DR,

You also might want to take a look at Representative Rosa DeLauro contributors as well.

bluecoat said...

Save yourself some time; Incumbents get PAC money, out of state money and money for maintaining the status quo.

Gabe said...

D_R - I'm on record, the money in politics is rotting our democracy.

That said, the difference between Larson and what we are talking about here is that no one is running against Larson and thus no one cares...

I am figting hard against the urge to launch into another rant against geographically defined single member first past the post districting...

Gabe said...

TSC - you might, but no one is running against her, so who cares?

Crickets...

disgruntled_republican said...

Oh so if Larson had an opponent it would matter? Give me a break. Where the hell do you think the money from his PAC, which is different from his campaign committee account, go?

And as TC stated, Rosa DeLauro, who does in fact have an opponent is the same way. Money buys power and influence my friend.

TSCowperthwait said...

Gabe,

Someone is running against Rep. DeLauro. Just because no one thinks that he can beat her doesn't mean that it is not a problem that she gets money from outside of the district, state and from public interest groups.

BRubenstein said...

Bluecoat..Bush had higher GPA then Kerry at Yale...and won the race..so who is smarter?

TSCowperthwait said...

The American public...

Gabe said...

I think you misread my snark. Let me be clearer:

PAC money and corporate bundled contributions are ruining our democracy.

That said, the only reason Lieberman's contributions came up is because he has a strong primary challenge.

No one is challenging either of these congresscritters, so you don't hear anything about their donations.

If Nancy Johnson didn't have a credible challenge, you wouldn't have heard anything about the contributions she gets from pharmacuetical companies...

TSCowperthwait said...

Gabe, so you are vasing it on whether the "challenger" has a chance at winning? I'm just trying to understand your decision not to think that the source of Larson/DeLauro's contributions are important.

bluecoat said...

BR:Kerry is smarter but Bush is better maybe???And on the GPA did they both take the same courses at the same time for the same professors??; sorry I ever opened my mouth on this one!!!!

Gabe said...

Where, in anything I've written, do you see me saying its not a problem?

When I said it rots democracy, did anyone mistake that as me arguing that its a good thing?

My only point is that if no one credible is running against them, then no one is paying attention to where their contributions are coming from...

bluecoat said...

TSC: you mean the Electoral College not the American Public.

Gabe said...

TSC - I said it was rotting our democracy. I also said that, because no one serious is running against them, no one will care. Where is the disconnect?

disgruntled_republican said...

But the money from these congrescritters as you put it is going to races that do matter...dont you get it?

And Rosa DeLauro has a goddamn opponent. Credible or not, at least pay him enough respect that he is throwing his hat into the ring to recognize it.

TSCowperthwait said...

Thanks, Gabe. That is what I was trying to clarify. However, I think that if it is going to be discussed in context it should be discussed in relation to all candidates -- whether someone is actually running against them or not.

bluecoat said...

Gabe; Money doesn't rot - the Treasury uses special paper.

Gabe said...

I'm going to say this one more time, so its clear.

I get it. I understand where PAC money comes from and where it goes. I think I made clear, by this post and when I wrote (and repeated) (and repeated again) that PAC and corporate contributions are ROTTING OUR DEMOCRACY, that I think its a bad thing. Just to make sure: I think its a bad thing.

But we live in reality. And the reality is that the media, where 90% of CT gets its political news (not this blog, GASP!), will not be reporting on races that do not exist. The majority of CT (and the country at large) will never hear about the 1st or 3rd districts. Not one time. They would have to do something illegal and these contributions are not illegal. Unseemly, icky, uncomfortable, but legal.

If you want to strike a blow against money in poitics, CT-Sen and the 5th are the places to do it, because people are paying attention.

If you want to quixotically wave the "See, All Liberals Are Hypocrits" in my face, please by all means continue (even though I said its rotting our democracy. Was that not strong enough language? Was it not clear? Should I have used all caps the first time?).

D_R, when I need a lecture from you about respect (damned or otherwise), I will let you know.

My mistake is thinking we were having an actual conversation about the reality of big money in politics with the context of a race where people are paying attention. And maybe, dare I dream, a conversation about how districting creates seats that will never be competitive. Instead let me apologize to you, Daniel Sumrall, and anyone else who was slighted by my assumption that we were discussing how this race spotlights the money in politics to a wide audience.

BRubenstein said...

Bluecoat..your point is valid..while Bush and Kerry were at Yale mostly at the same time, they were not in the same courses.

Bush did finish with a higher GPA...and went on theo Harvard Business School while Kerry went on to BC Law School.

TSCowperthwait said...

Gabe, are you in high school?

ctblogger said...

Gabe,

Wow, great post.

As a sidebar, The NYC market in the Danbury area goes all the way up to about Southbury as you can get all the NYC stations on cable (Charter Communications). I lived in Sandy Hook right on the Zoar River which is right next to Southbury and I would say at that point, the whole NYC attitude starts to evaporate.

Here's my favorite quote from Lamont's campaign in regards to Joe's attacking Ned's wealth.

"That's them trying to make an issue of Ned giving money instead of all the money they've taken from Republican lobbyists,"

Too easy.

TSCowperthwait said...

If you are going to raise/discuss the need for campaign finance -- discuss it across the board.

GMR said...

Bluecoat: Bush actually got higher grades than Kerry at Yale (Kerry's grades didn't come out until after the election). Neither Bush nor Kerry were in any danger of being named valedictorian.

The current structure of campaign finance is a bit nutty with more and more millionaires becoming Senators. These millionaires can contribute unlimited sums to their own campaigns, but only $2,000 to someone else's. Corzine, Cantwell, Dayton, Kohl, etc. are all multi-millionaires. I'm not convinced public financing is the answer. Why should newspapers get to write editorials day in and day out, but not have this count as a contribution?

disgruntled_republican said...

Gabe -

It is you who is not reading my posts. Larson, opposed or not (it just so happens he too does have an opponent), is funneling that money that he raises in "Synergy PAC" into other campaigns that do, in fact matter.

Races like the 2CD where Courtney has received $10,000. Races like the 4CD where Farrell has received $5,000. Races like the 5CD where Murphy has received $7,000. All this money is coming from big business, unions and big money individual donors.

I don't think I can say this any more clearly. You cannot critize Lieberman in one breath and put your head in the sand in the next.

I think we all agree that money in politics is a huge problem. Just be fair in your arguements.

As a side note, but related as you yourself said, what is your take on the moveon.org election? Hint, think before you speak.

Rell is going down said...

I thought the limit for a congressional campaign was $2,100. I might be wrong, and if i am i apologize. If it is, how are these PACs able to give more than that to Farrell, Murphy and Courtney?

disgruntled_republican said...

Well...the s*#t is gonna hit the fan now!

CHRISPAC has given $10,000 to you hated Joen Lieberman. Does it matter now Gabe?

CHRISPAC has had influence in other campaigns that "matter" as well. Such as:
In this cycle:
Hillary Clinton: $7,500
Joe Courtney: $10,000
Farrell: $10,000
Murphhy: $5,000
And in 2004:
Ken Salazar in Colorado: $10,000
Jim Maloney: $10,000

disgruntled_republican said...

rell isn't going down-

The limit on PAC money is $10,000 per cycle.

Paul Vance said...

I do not know how to properly post a link, but here is a website that links to a very interesting article about campaign finance reform by a friend of mine who is a law school professor.

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=816244

Real campaign finance reform is the only way to make government about the local voter again. I have been more and more disgusted that politics is often more about raising money and less about who we would like to represent our views.

disgruntled_republican said...

Paul Vance-

I couldn't agree more. From reading the article, I assume you are not for public financing of campaigns?

Rell is going down said...

Cool, thanks.

TSCowperthwait said...

Good post, Paul. I look forward to reading the article.

Gabe said...

TSC - I support campaign finance across the board. I'm going to spend my time on the races that people are paying attention to. I will leave the races to which no one is paying attention to you. Will see which races better make the point.

Gabe, are you in high school? No, was this comment an example of your staggering maturity?

D_R - If I was being unfair in my arguments, I would have said that the PACs involved with DeLauro and Larson were no big deal. Instead, I said that no one was paying attention to those races, so I am going to focus on the races that people are paying attention to. Also, being that I am attacking a Democrat, how unfair am I being?

I'm reading your posts, and I agree that PAC money is corrupting regardless which race we are talking about. As I said above, I am going to concentrate on the races that people are paying attention to. That does not put my head in the sand - still think its bad, I just know that no one is paying attention to John Larson.

On MoveOn, since they are sending an email to their CT members asking for them to contribute to Lamont, so far I am okay with it (If CitiBank's PAC had sent an email to their supporters asking them to support Lieberman and they had the choice to do so, I would be okay with it too).

If their PAC directly contributes money to Lamont, I will decry it just as strenously as I did above.

As for the ads, I'm not wild about outside groups running campaign ads to advocate an issue in the middle of a race. That said, as long as they follow all the rules (i.e. advocate an issue and not a candidate, no coordination between the group and the candidate), I'm not sure how it can be stopped with out free speech implications.

As for your hint, I'm afraid you are going to have to make your condescension more clear; it flew right over my head.

TrueBlueCT said...

disgruntled--
man, you are in a mood today, aren't you?

anyway, you took a swipe at me upthread, and I wanted to reply to you that I'm neither ignorant, nor a hypocrite. I know where Dodd, Larson and DeLauro get there money from.

However, Lieberman is exceptional for two reasons. 1) I have never seen a donor report with so many "power couples" giving $8400 a piece to a candidate. And then there are the corporate hontshots who are having their children max out to Joe, to bring their total contributions over $10,000! Wow.

2) Larson and DeLauro might take the corporate money, but at least they begin to represent CT voters. Lieberman has long since kissed us goodbye, and makes no show of being answerable to us.

P.S. Gabe, let go. These guys are just getting your goat. The substantive points you have made are quite clearly presented. Good job!

Paul Vance said...

Here is the whole law review article

I am not a huge fan of public financing for campaigns, I would prefer that we restrict spending, but there are some real constitutional concerns.

TSCowperthwait said...

Settle down, Gabe. Just having some fun at your expense because you appeared so worked up about DR's posts. I now know that you like to turn your attention only where the cameras are pointed and not towards the dark deeds that go on in the corners.

bluecoat said...

Mr. Vance: glad to see you learned how to post a link in short time since the incapability to do that is normally relegated to Republican leaners such as myself on this blog - well educated (myself excluded) but not very practical I guess.

GMR says: "Bush actually got higher grades than Kerry at Yale (Kerry's grades didn't come out until after the election). Neither Bush nor Kerry were in any danger of being named valedictorian." OK, but then how did I know before the election Kerry wasn't as good a GPAer as Bush at Yale - and both were Skull & Bnes guys. The bottom line is it doesn't matter. Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard; Walter Annenberg who was historically the largest benefactor of UPENN never graduated from his Alma Mater and a number of terrorists and Latin America dictators graduated from US institutions of higher learning.

bluecoat said...

Ah Hell, some of these latin dictators even trained at West Point; and 'West Point' is now even a registered trademark thanks to the United States Military legal guys but I guess that's another issue.

Gabe said...

I'm not Chuck Schumer... I want to turn the attention to where the cameras are pointed, so that we can fix the dark corners...

Paul, that was a fascinating article, but I'm not sure that I buy a majority of this SCOTUS finding that the time spent on fundraising rather than legislating is a compelling interest so as to restrict a fundemantal right. Also, the main reason given against public financing seems to be that it is voluntary and thus unworkable. If a court was willing to recognize the above as a compelling interest and public financing as necessary to the compelling interest, couldn't public financing be made involuntary (same as expenditure limits)?