Make The Case For Your Candidate

Here at MyDD, in a series of straw polls, we have often asked you who you are supporting for President in 2008. Also, we spend a great deal of time comparing candidates when it comes to many of the micro-aspects of campaigns: Iraq withdrawal plans, netroots outreach, poll analysis, health care plans, staff compositions, campaign ads, stump speech rhetoric, etc. However, instead of all of this, and rather than just offering up another open thread, I would like to take a step back and ask you to explain, in big picture terms, why you are currently supporting whatever candidate you are currently supporting for President.

Lay out the argument for your candidate. Be as detailed or as brief as you like. If you are wavering between candidates, or if you haven't decided yet, please go ahead and explain your current thoughts too. The only specific request I have is that you be as positive as you can, and mostly talk up your candidate rather than talking down others. I'd like the community to see all of the good reasons to support different candidates in the deepest Democratic field in decades.

Tags: Democrats, Open Threads, President 2008 (all tags)

Comments

135 Comments

I'll keep it short.. Gore

The only man that democrats will get passionate about.  Strong on the climate crisis, strong on saying the truth about Bush's incompetence.

by DocD 2007-05-31 12:55PM | 0 recs
Oh, you are so right....

by icebergslim 2007-05-31 01:09PM | 0 recs
Re: I'll keep it short.. Gore

Not many of you guys seem to put a lot of weight into this, but one reason I'm for Gore is that he's the Tech candidate. He's the opposite of Ted "The Tubes" Stevens. He gets the internet. He's calling for freeing up the spectrum. He's totally for net neutrality.

Now, in the scheme of thing, these issues might seem trivial. But I think information infrastructure issues will be increasingly important in the future. Besides, Gore gets it. He'll help stop the threat of software patents. He's the closest to a scientist to have a good chance at the presidency.

Gore is the candidate of the post-industrial economy. Environmentalism? High-Tech issues? Collaboration of the Masses? Gore gets it. We'll finally have the philosophy ready to deal with the challenges of globalization.

Furthermore, all the standard reasons Gore rocks also apply. He changed the terms of the debate on the environment just like that. He has a respect for the constitution.

I focus on the The Assault on Reason more than AITruth. Not only has Gore consistently seen the future (on the climate crisis, internet, iraq, etc), but he's also well-grounded in our past. He respects the constitution. He understands the dynamics behind our history.

All our candidates are brilliant. The "top three" each have three different types: Hillary is brilliant in terms of policy, politics, and strategy. Barack has Harvard Law Review credentials, and Edwards got all his money from being a great trial lawyer.

Gore, however, is a nerd at heart. That's the icing on the cake.

by sayhar 2007-05-31 06:00PM | 0 recs
Re: I'll keep it short.. Gore

Also, you can't forget this:

Al Gore airlifts Katrina victims out of New Orleans
http://www.detnews.com/2005/nation/0509/ 09/nat4%2D309467.htm

by sayhar 2007-05-31 06:04PM | 0 recs
Re: I'll keep it short.. Gore

See in the past all this Goree talk sort of annoyed me. I still don't think he'll run but, Christ, this bunch of candidates has been so dissappointing I really hope he jumps in.

And thats why I won't be taking part in this discussion- I don't really have anything good to say about any of the candidates. I seem to be the only one but I think this field makes Dean and Kerry look great.

Maybe my standards are too high.

by js noble 2007-05-31 08:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Edwards...

Because Gore isn't running.

by IsThisOverYet 2007-05-31 12:55PM | 0 recs
Gore may run

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/5 /29/233230/066

As for why he should, I believe Gore has demonstrated a deeper understanding of the problems that plague our nation and our world than the other candidates -- and the courage to tackle these problems head on.

This is NOT the Shrum-advised Gore of 2000. Al broke out of that mold beginning with his speeches against the run up to war in 2002-2003 and confirmed his break with the DLC side of his past with his endorsement of Howard Dean in the 2004 primaries.

Even if he didn't win the nomination, his entry into the race would force the media and other candidates to address "his" issues: i.e., the survival of our planet and of American democracy. I think this would be a good thing for the country. I also think he would win and begin to solve the root causes of our problems not just treat symptoms.

This paraphrase of part of Gore's recent speech at GWU (from the DKos diary linked above) demonstrates what I'm talking about:

Say we have two proposals that are made and given equal time in a healthy, democratic debate. The first proposal, idea A, would spend government money and ensure that every America has basis healthcare coverage, including the millions of Americans who are currently left out of the private system. This would not only help the public welfare and not only save millions in productivity and medical bills, but it would help the private sector who are suffering from international competition, as American companies are pressured to give private health insurance to their employees. Businesses would save money and people would live longer.

The second proposal, proposal B, says that we should repeal what's left of the Estate Tax for the tiniest 1% sliver of the wealthiest Americans. In a reasonable democratic arena, these ideas would be given equal time and we'd choose one over the other.

Which would we choose? Healthcare for all, or tax cuts for zillionaires? Gee, I wonder...
[Wry look, audience laughter]

However, for some reason proposal B has gotten so much more attention due to who controls the media and who controls debate in DC. We can't address discrepancies in wealth until we can change the discussion to give these proposals an equal footing.

by Jim in Chicago 2007-05-31 01:49PM | 0 recs
I'm not waiting for Gore

if it helps ensure Hillary.

anybody but Hillary

by TarHeel 2007-05-31 04:04PM | 0 recs
Gore's entry hurts Hillary

Hillary has the highest proportion of "soft" supporters, many of which she would lose to Gore. Her campaign is unsuccessfully trying to use the possibility of Gore's entry to slow her opponents' fundraising, but the last thing she wants is for Gore to actually enter. Gore's forthright opposition to the war from before it started -- earlier and far more public than Obama's -- also creates a contrast Hillary is eager to avoid. In fact, Gore has been openly critical of those in Congress who did not bother to read and absorb all of the available evidence before voting. That criticism is sure to be played up the moment Gore becomes a candidate -- which is obviously to Hillary's detriment.

by Jim in Chicago 2007-05-31 08:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Gore's entry hurts Hillary

I think in a party with a majority of women, having one woman running against 7 or 8 other men makes it very difficult to beat her, all else being equal.

by jallen 2007-05-31 08:22PM | 0 recs
All else is NOT equal

As Hillary's duplicity on the war vote becomes clearer it is her support among women that is most likely to be affected. Gore's entry helps shine a spotlight on Hillary's greatest weakness -- not only in the primaries but as the only Democratic Iraq "hawk" in serious contention, she is the only one who could potentially lose the general election by taking the Dems' winningest issue off the table just as John Kerry did. And her making noises about opposing Bush's conduct of the war during the primaries will not change the fact that she stood by her initial war vote -- as Kerry proved in 2004. (Kerry won Iowa in part by pretending his stance on the war was essentially the same as Dean's.)

by Jim in Chicago 2007-05-31 08:57PM | 0 recs
Re: All else is NOT equal

I agree that all else isn't equal, but I don't think the war is such a big issue, and her campaign is doing a good job of blurring the candidates positions.  I don't see why Gore's entry would do something that Barack's has not, though, since he was against the war from the beginning as well.

All else isn't equal.  But she does have an advantage.

by jallen 2007-05-31 09:14PM | 0 recs
"I don't think the war is such a big issue

You're shitting me, right?!

Barack's problem is that as soon as he got to the Senate he started taking Rahm Emanuel's advice and soft-pedalling his opposition to the war, coming out with mealy mouthed statements about the need to stand by the troops, etc. Barack's voting record on the war since joining the Senate is virtually indistinguishable from Clinton's (Hillary's might actually be a little BETTER!)

Gore does not have this problem. He is in a much better position to draw a clear contrast and not let Hillary get away with blurring her war position the way Kerry did in the 2004 primaries.

by Jim in Chicago 2007-05-31 10:41PM | 0 recs
Re: "I don't think the war is

It's a big issue, but it's not close to being the issue.

by jallen 2007-05-31 11:08PM | 0 recs
Edwards because....

healthcare
http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/heal th-care/

eliminating poverty
http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/pove rty/

new energy
http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/ener gy/new-energy-economy/

energy independence & stopping global warming
http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/ener gy/new-energy-economy/index.html

rural recovery
http://johnedwards.com/news/press-releas es/20070416-rural-recovery/index.html

plan for the troops
http://johnedwards.com/issues/veterans/p lan-for-coming-home/index.html

A Sacred Contract with Our Military and Veterans Community
http://johnedwards.com/news/headlines/sa cred-contract-fact-sheet/index.html

plan to end war in Iraq
http://johnedwards.com/about/issues/iraq /index.html

Clean coal
http://johnedwards.com/news/press-releas es/20070326-cleaner-coal/index.html

protect homeowners & fight predatory lending
http://johnedwards.com/news/press-releas es/200700404-predatory-mortgages/index.h tml

Transformational Change For America And The World
http://johnedwards.com/news/speeches/nhi p20070315/index.html

College for Everyone
http://johnedwards.com/youngamerica/head lines/20070511-college-opportunity/index .html

All that and big balls too.

by cosbo 2007-05-31 06:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards because....

C'mon, you're supposed to give a short, pithy blurb about why your candidate is better, something catchy and fresh, maybe throw in a shot against another of the pols...

You expect people to be swayed by a list of coherent, progressive, innovative, widely-supported, sensible IDEAS???

Crazy.

by greenvtster 2007-06-01 04:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards because....

LOL. Ideas...go figure. Sometimes I wonder about America.

by cosbo 2007-06-01 06:39AM | 0 recs
Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running...

I am undecided between Edwards and Richardson.  I trust Richardson's foreign-policy instincts much more, but don't like how he cut social programs in New Mexico or his apparent disinterest in reproductive rights.  Conversely, I like Edwards's economic policies very much, but am not sure about his foreign policy vision.  

I also like these two because I think they have by far the best global-warming plans, and that, to me, is the most important issue the country faces.

by antidoto 2007-05-31 12:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

I'm with you.  I was originally excited about Gore and Feingold.  Now i feel like i want to support Richardson because he would probably make  a great president, but watching him on Meet the Press makes me rethink if he has a chance.  He just isnt good at answering questions without taking both sides.

by DocD 2007-05-31 02:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

Give Richardson another chance. He's a diplomat and a seasoned bureaucrat. Shining on camera is not his forte. His credentials are superb; his tv talking points can be refined.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 04:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

Agreed. He's been right on the two biggest issues our country faces: Iraq and global warming. Not only that, but he's been right about Iraq since 2002 and right about global warming since the 70s. He's also for single-payer health care, net neutrality, and pretty much every progressive issue out there.

Not to mention he has, by far and away, the most experience of those in the field, already has the respect of virtually every world leader (will be crucial in repairing our image), and he's won a presidential election before.

by NYPopulist 2007-05-31 03:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

Ugh, I hate it when I hit the wrong reply button.

by NYPopulist 2007-05-31 03:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

I was interested in Richardson until I saw him in the debate. I really did not like what Richardson had to say in the debate, nor did I like his bearing while saying it. The "tough talk" image he tried to project while speaking about threats from our "enemies" really underwhelmed me. I can get that kind of talk anywhere, so it did not make me want to learn more about Richardson.

by Mark Wallace 2007-05-31 06:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Because neither Gore nor Feingold is running..

Richardson hasn't cut social programs in NM.  He may not have increased their funding enough, but that's because you can't put everyone on Medicaid.  The health care problem requires systemic solutions, and NM is a poor state despite the windfall from oil money.

Bill Richardson recognizes that one-time windfalls need to be invested in infrastructure, not piddled away in unsustainable recurring expenditures.

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:55PM | 0 recs
I support Obama

because I think that he is the most talented Democratic politician since JFK. He has the personality and background to 1. solidify a long lasting Democratic majority, 2. bring the political center towards progressive values, 3. stop the boomer strangle hold on politics and 4. radically improve our relations with the rest of the world. And he can win against Hillary Clinton.

Obama has one negative and that is his perceived inexperience. I am saying perceived because when he enters the White House he will have completed 4 years in the US Senate and 6 years in Illinois state senate. By comparison Edwards has 6 years in the US Senate, Romney has 5 years as governor, Guiliani has 6 years as mayor.
Only if the GOP nominee is John McCain will Obama's so called inexperience be a factor. And I am certain that he will beat tired old McCain anyway, if McCain somehow against all odds wins the GOP nomination. Obama will eat Romney and Guiliani for breakfast.

by Populism2008 2007-05-31 01:02PM | 0 recs
Re: I support Obama

ME, TOO, ditto on all above Populism2008 for Obama.

by icebergslim 2007-05-31 01:10PM | 0 recs
Re: I support Obama

I see this claim and comparison to JFK, but didn't Bill Clinton actually win the presidency TWICE?

Obama beat Alan Keyes.  No disrespect, but it was hardly a contested election.  Yes, Obama may prove to be a great Democratic political leader, but let's not elevate him prematurely into a demi-god.

After all, if Edwards were to win, then he could/would approach the status you too readily give to Obama.  Then again, at least you did not compare him to Reagan.

by citizen53 2007-05-31 01:34PM | 0 recs
Re: I support Obama

I think Edwards is close to a demi-god. Not quite there but close.

Bill Clinton is likeable and charismatic, Hillary not so. Unfortunately (I wouldn't mind having her in the White House).

by Populism2008 2007-05-31 02:29PM | 0 recs
8 years

8 years in the Illinois Senate, 1996-2004.

by Korha 2007-05-31 08:29PM | 0 recs
Re: 8 years

When the country is on the precipice of a need for change, the best leaders come from outside the system.  Obama represents this mix of the ability to command from within, but without being obligated to the interests that drive the current system.  Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt and even George Washington (three of our consistently rated best Presidents) all shared this trait.  They all had a lack of political experience in terms of deal making and promises they would have to keep if they were elected.  Obama's easy election against Alan Keyes means he did not have to compromise his integrity.  Hillary, on the other hand, represents the exact opposite of this ideal.

by jbsloan 2007-06-01 04:30AM | 0 recs
Re: 8 years

Disagree.

by bowiegeek 2007-06-01 04:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Obama:

While all the candidates will be talking about the same issues, Barack Obama is the ONLY one who has been consistent on those issues before they were popular and is the ONLY one that can be trusted to actually keep the promises he makes on the Campaign Trail. I believe what he says and I believe he is honest about setting America on the right path and is not just saying anything to anyone to get elected. When you are the real thing, you don't have to keep advertising yourself like a used car salesman. Barack Obama doesn't talk up a good game, he demonstrates it. He's not out to score political points or be the first in this particular election to jump on a soap box. He knows what he has already done and his record speaks for itself. He does not have to keep reminding people that he's a progressive because we already know it. He's not running a Campaign based on whatever talking point is popular today, but on the real issues facing our nation. I just believe Barack Obama over all the others.

by ObamaEdwards2008 2007-05-31 01:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Barack Obama, because he could actually unite the country around a progressive agenda. Not squeak through various progressive policies, but unite people around progressive values by making the case for them in a way they can connect with. I believe he, supported by a progressive movement that will also hold him accountable, is our best shot at beginning to change hearts and minds so that we can get on a path toward long-term, big change in the country and the world.

by Jenifer Fernandez Ancona 2007-05-31 01:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I think for our party to consolidate the gains of 2006 for a longer-term advantage in Congressional, presidential, and state races, it's going to take more than a stream of bad news about Republican failures. I'm afraid most of the Democratic presidential candidates are running safe campaigns right now and possibly even through the rest of the campaign. I think you always want a crystal-clear distinction between you and the other guy, and economically there's not a lot of difference between the two parties right now. So I tend to support candidates with populist leanings who can embody that distinction, and right now that's Edwards. (I like Gore and Richardson to an extent but their history in NAFTA is a big penalty in my book).

by joesaho 2007-05-31 01:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I have a confession - my brief time supporting Edwards may be coming to an end. Obamamania (I promise I will never use that phrase again) is starting to get to me. Not that I plan on throwing my support behind the Senator from Illionis right away - first I need some time as an undecided to clear my head. But he is just so damn appealing...

I have been supporting Edwards (monetarily and on the blogs) because of his class-based rhetoric and bold, imaginative policy proposals. He says all the things I ever wanted to hear from a mainstream politician! But then I get to thinking - can he really pass even a fraction of the policies he has laid out to the public? (some are big, and I mean FDR big!) Will he really commit his presidency to tackling poverty and inequality? I'd like to think so, but how can I be sure? Has he found his way, or is he filling a niche? Probably a little of both...

I have been hesitant about Obama, in part because his talk about class is soft and subtle. And to me, 40 million Americans below the poverty line is not something one should be subtle about. But then I read a post (moments ago) by jg40, where he or she argued that Obama is doing what he needs to do to become and stay a front-runner in White America. This is absolutely true, both of Obama as well as the other candidates. So what would Obama really do if he was in the White House? That's what I need to figure out next. I already have many, many reasons to want to support Obama (he is black, young, charismatic, he has an impressive history, both personal and professional, he was always against the war, he is energizing the youth vote, etc, etc) - but I can't really support him until I can be certain that he will be the Progressive President that I want him to be.

And I should add that I, like many folks around these blogs, would drop everything and back Gore if he decided to join the race. Why? Al Gore is simply the most qualified American alive to be our President.

by LandStander 2007-05-31 01:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate
So what would Obama really do if he was in the White House? That's what I need to figure out next. I already have many, many reasons to want to support Obama (he is black, young, charismatic, he has an impressive history, both personal and professional, he was always against the war, he is energizing the youth vote, etc, etc) - but I can't really support him until I can be certain that he will be the Progressive President that I want him to be.
This is where we come in. All of us who make up the progressive movement, I mean. One of the best things I learned from the Dean campaign is that Presidential politics is not about a shining knight who will swoop down and solve all of our problems. It's not so much about believing in him, but believing in ourselves. I see him opening the door, in part by the way he is running a mostly distributed and grass-roots campaign. (While Clinton is spending her money on high-powered elites, Obama is hiring 70 ground organizers in New Hampshire and Nevada.) You know Obama is a progressive not because of any particular policy platform, but because it's in his bones. It's why he passed up corporate jobs to organize diverse communities on the South Side of Chicago to help them get political power; why he went on to serve as a professor of constitutional law and a civil rights attorney. I believe at the end of the day it's not about Barack. He is the charismatic leader at the top of the pyramid of the movement we are building. On the Left, the pyramid is still lopsidedly inverted (as Bill Bradley says), because we have only just begun to build up the kind of infrastructure in media and ideas and leadership that the Right has built. But we are building it, and the worst thing we could do in this amazing moment of progressive opportunity would be to elect another Clinton who will continue on the same old path that has gotten us nowhere. Obama is the first truly charismatic leader, with broad-based appeal, we have seen in a long time who actually gets the grass-roots. He has much broader appeal than Edwards does, and thus I think has the best chance of eclipsing Clinton.
by Jenifer Fernandez Ancona 2007-05-31 01:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

But we are building it, and the worst thing we could do in this amazing moment of progressive opportunity would be to elect another Clinton who will continue on the same old path that has gotten us nowhere.

I can't fathom why you would even say that. The Clinton Administration was moving America in the right direction. We were booming and we were respected. Don't think for a second that Hillary Clinton does not want to restore our place in the world and the promise of the American Dream at home.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 04:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate
Sorry, I said that clumsily. I didn't mean to imply that Clinton would not be vastly better than what we have had with the Bush Administration. I meant that when Bill Clinton was president, he did nothing to build up the Democratic Party or the infrastructure of the progressive movement, and we felt that in the elections that followed. Obviously, if Clinton is the nominee I will fight to elect her! I just think right now we have a choice to go in a different direction; an opportunity that I hope we don't pass up.
by Jenifer Fernandez Ancona 2007-05-31 04:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I see, well I don't want to pretend that I know what's going to happen but I'm not sure anyone who's elected will be able to do much to build the Democratic Party; running the country is a lot of work. May the best candidate win! Cheers.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 05:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

and Obama drew 4,000 in Reno, Nevada today.  This guy is getting better and better on the stump.  If we want to move this party to the progressive side, Obama is the 21st Century candidate.  It is time to turn the page, democrats.

http://my.barackobama.com/page/community /post_group/ObamaHQ/CrXl

by icebergslim 2007-05-31 05:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

You left out "clean"  (h/t Joe Biden, D-MBNA)

by filby 2007-05-31 04:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I now call myself an Obama supporter, but my decision is recent; i have supported and gave $ to edwards, and will contribute/support the eventual nominee. I think obama is now "my candidate" because I have been impressed by his position on Iraq. His judgement at the time of the decision to go to war reflects his understanding of the meaning "national security strategy", an understanding that the current occupants of the WH do not possess. Obama's campagin has been impressive to me as well. The sheer numbers showing up at events, as well as his rapid response to attacks from McCain and other republican candidates has me convinced that he is the person for the job.

by bjschmid 2007-05-31 01:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Senator Obama, because he is likely the most intelligent, common sense candidate I've seen in my more than fifty years observing.  His qualities indicate he will be a leader for this country of a transformational nature. One who can unite us, reform our politics and regenerate our historic international alliances.

by Lancaster94 2007-05-31 01:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

People. This isn't a thread to "keep it short"

This is a thread to provide detailed insight to why you support a candidate.

I support Obama currently and unless a miracle happens I don't think I'll support anyone else.

Why? Because I think deep in his heart he is a true progressive. Inside he wants to be a radical. He wants huge huge change. He knows how bad shape America really is. One thing from one of his books. I forgot which one really stuck me, he was talking about a talk he had with one of his friends who was part of the civil rights movement, his friend was saying why he never went into politics. Because you had to make some compromises or you wouldn't change anything. Obama said he understood that but he felt it was necessary to really make change.

So I wish he was more hard line and populist like Edwards but that's just him. That's how he feels he can most make change. He's not perfect. He could be bolder on Global Warming and could fight harder against the war. But no one is perfect I think deep done it's just his strategy for making change. He needs to be a mainstream and viable candidate to change things and then once he's in office he can propose real progressive change.

And he's lived a real life. He's lived around the world. And struggled in ways that real people strangle, he's honest about his past.

I also think he could get his agenda passed congress unlike some of the other candidates.

And I think he's the most electable though that's only a last thought. He could create a spark in the progressive movement and do for progressives what Reagan did for the cons.

Edwards would also be an amazing president, and even Hillary would be pretty good IMO.

My dream:

Obama/Edwards Plus SOS: Richardson SOD: Clark, SOHHS E. Edwards etc.

by Populista 2007-05-31 01:39PM | 0 recs
Barack Obama hands down.

1.  Does not have to get into the Iraq vote/Read the NIE mistake game.

2.  For someone who the media claims is politically inexperience, has been running a much better campaign than the competition.

3.  Excites the youth and independents.  Appeals to moderate republicans for his Reaganesque style framing of arguments.

4.  He is building his campaign and policy around a narrative, something the republicans are notorious for but most democrats have yet to grapple on.

5.  Something I feel is very important is counter attack time.  Barack Obama has been performing phenomenally in this area.  He does not back down from an attack and knows how to deliver an effective counter punch.

6.  He knows how to handle tough interview questions on the spot.  He does not get caught up in lies, spin, or past votes.  He had really tough interviews on CBS 60 minutes (dealing with race) and This Week (dealing with current votes on iraq, strike first foreign policy against terrorism and past statements on 87 billion dollar supplemental) and he nailed them all with presidential poise.

7.  He inspires as well as projects leadership and knowledge of current issues.

Obama is the money candidate for the democratic party.  He can project progressive partisan values without the flaming rhetoric of others that tend to scare away independents and moderate republicans.  He can give a fiery speech at the DNC to excite the base and then give an inpirational speech at the state of the union that will light a fire under the American electorate.  He is the man of our times and I am under strong opinion that no amount of mainstream rhetoric, subconscious racism, or MSM/Blogosphere attacks is going to stop the mountain that we supporters call . . .

            OBAMA.

by lovingj 2007-05-31 01:44PM | 0 recs
I agree with this

I think this is an excellent list. Here's a few things I would add.

1. The boldness of his campaign. Obama's decision to run at all was a really bold one -- it took people by surprise. I think we can already forget this because he's been so successful. But it's very rare for someone not to wait, to seize the moment as he has. This relates to numbers 2, 3, 4 and 7 of your points but is also slightly different.

2. He's an African-American candidate, not triangulating AGAINST the mainstream of African-American politics (as, say, centrists like Ron Kirk, let along Harold Ford might do) but also not pigeon-holed or held back by his race, as so many of the great African-American politicians of our time have been. This is of huge significance. In fact, it is quite literally a first in the history of our country. I believe along with so many critics and historians of this country, that race is the defining issue of the long "project" of the United States. Race -- and racism -- are also clearly at the center of all partisan politics since 1964 and the integration of the Democratic party. This point fits into two other points that people have made repeatedly on this thread:

  1. Obama has the potential to transform and shake up entrenched partisan divisions
  2. He is a forward-looking politician, representing and embodying the young and the future.
Obama's race seems to me of great significance -- not in-and-of-itself, of course, but as he has been positioned -- through his own remarkable talent, and a series of historical and contingent circumstances -- to challenge in profound and transformative ways the racist logic that has been central to Republican electoral gains for the last 40 years. Having an African-American president, rooted in but not confined to the central currents of African-American political culture, could be one of the great turning-points in the very largest narrative of the United States. And certainly one of the greatest milestones that we will experience in this generation.

To turn away from this historical opportunity would be sad; to embrace it: remarkably empowering and exciting.

by alw 2007-05-31 04:38PM | 0 recs
Gore & Peace

Al Gore is clearly in a class of his own.  He has experience, intelligence, moral courage, and above all, honesty.  As he eloquently describes in his new book, democracy should not be taken for granted and really is a very delicate thing. As history has shown us, in times of war and fear, democracy can be first curtailed then damaged, and finally destroyed.  I think he grasps this on a more fundamental level than any other candidate including Obama.  The next presidential election is about more than any single issue (even Iraq).  I'm not prone to overstatement but I really believe the fate of the Republic is in the balance.  Only the re-election of Gore can hope to repair the profound damage that American democracy has sustained at the hands of Bush-Cheney.

by ramfar 2007-05-31 01:48PM | 0 recs
Dodd

I'm well aware he's not got a snowball's chance in hell as it stands, but just because northeastern liberals haven't done well electorally in the past two decades, doesn't mean that they aren't necessarily the best men for the job.

I like his policies and his attempts at outreach, which are a lot less halting now than they were a few months back, and if he can pick up some netroots support it might give Edwards an added impetus to tack a little further to the left.

by Englishlefty 2007-05-31 02:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Dodd

I'm British too, so I guess this doesn't bode well for Dodd, but I think he's the best choice.  A solid liberal on the issues, intelligent and experienced.

by Illustrious 2007-05-31 02:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Dodd

Dodd is a credible candidate. Though I don't necessarily support him, I do wish he had a lot more buzz.

by sayhar 2007-05-31 06:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Wow okay, free form straw poll.

I support Senator Clinton. She has had unparalleled experience (having been in the White House 8 years, having been a legislator, and having worked in the justice system). She is a truly inspiring thinker. I'm a C-SPAN watcher. I've seen her on the Armed Services Committee. She asks the tough questions and she digs deep. She's also a strong supporter of gay rights. She worked vigorously to defeat the Gay Marriage Ban amendment alongside Human Rights Campaign. She was the first of the candidates to speak before the Human Rights Campaign to show her solidarity with the gay community. She is well respected around the world at a time when America desperately needs to make allies again. She knows the most about foreign policy among all of the candidates (with possibly the exception of Biden). She has a commitment to improving health care but at the same time is committed to balancing the budget and reducing the amount of debt we have currently owned by other countries. (As of 2005, 13% of our budget was just paying interest on the national debt). I'm thoroughly convinced that she will restore America's greatness both economically and politically. Right now we need experience, pragmatism, and reasonable governance.

Clinton a thoroughly accomplished senator, advocate, and first lady. She knows how to protect America and its interests without further damaging our stature around the world. And to be sure, America has global threats and I believe Hillary is likely our most experienced and equipped candidate to intelligently counteract these threats.

I could go on and on, but sadly also, I have a life.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 02:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Clinton = old politics, failure on health care reform and poor judgement in voting for the war, otherwise she's great.  Also, could her advisors be anyt more corporate?  Where have all the populists gone?

Obama = a new generation of leadership & he was right from the start on the war, good judgement.  Obama would restore our standing & respect in the world.  Sincerety & charisma don't usually come in the same package.  "Let's turn the page..."

Edwards - I think the wrong Edwards is running but I like him, he's just not my first choice.  Richardson has a darn good resume.

by howardpark 2007-05-31 02:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Easily John Edwards no matter who gets in- John Edwards is the only candidate who offers real Progressive change. Without trying to trash I seem to remember Gore made an eletion that should've been a landslide close enough to steal. That being said if he enters he is my SECOND choice.

John Edwards has come out with detailed proposals for healthcare, fighting global warming and making us energy independent, leaving Iraq sanely, restoring rural communities, restoring our military after the disasterous Bush years, cutting waste in the Pentagon, and helping all Americans achieve a college degree. Those are just off the top of my head. There are many more.

Another real good reason I support Edwards is that the Republican establishment and fence-sitters within our party will do anything and our desperately trying to derail him. That tells me all I need to know.

by RDemocrat 2007-05-31 02:07PM | 0 recs
Clark or Gore, if they run

Since they are the only ones with backbone enough to come out and advocate for single payer.  Others can try blowing sunshine up our asses, (and they and their supporters will try by saying single payer isn't politically feasible - which it very much is).  The truth is that these plans are band-aids on a gushing wound.

Out of the big four, its fairly evident that at least three will get us out of Iraq at roughly the same pace, which is why healthcare is the breaker for me.

Unfortunatley their healthcare plans are as similar as their Iraq exit-strategy plans.

Right now, I'm ever so slightly leaning towards Edwards.  Mainly due to Obama's failure to speak more forcefully concerning progressive values.  

As a 2004 Clark supporter, the whole Edwards/Shelton campaign and Ewards cosponsoring of the IWR bothers me.  Even so, I just can't get on the Obama train right now. Charasima just isn't enough to woo my support.

by areucrazy 2007-05-31 02:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate
It seems to me that John Edwards is the only candidate that presents a compelling reason to support him that isn't based on the candidate themself.  The other candidates' campaigns are mostly about the candidates themselves, while John is campaigning not simply on making him president, but on a moral crusade to help people and rebuild America.  His is a cause-based candidacy.
His cause seems genuine because it is what he ran on in 2004.  It seems genuine because it is consistent with his record.  It seems genuine because he seems genuine.
But simply, I feel like I have no choice in this primary.  I am compelled to support John Edwards, whether I like it or not, because he is the only candidate who is speaking to my issues in my language.
by jallen 2007-05-31 02:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Great post. I totally agree that the Edwards campaign is not about him, it's about starting a moral movement to end poverty. It's about big, bold change, and that's what I want. I like the other candidates but I fear that with them it will be baby steps on numerous progressive issues, nothing will happen with NAFTA, and poverty won't be addressed as aggressively. Richardson has a bold energy policy, but there are other things about Richardson I don't like so he's not my pick.

by Sarah Lane 2007-05-31 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I should also point out that Gore would run on a compelling cause as well.  If he would enter, he'd be my second choice, though Chris Dodd is closer to me, I think, and would be my 2nd if he were a competitive candidate.

by jallen 2007-05-31 03:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Senator Barack Obama

Populism2008 already made my post for me, and listed all the reasons i support the Senator.

by Socks The Cat 2007-05-31 02:10PM | 0 recs
Obama
because it's time democrats pick the best person to sell the nation on a generally progressive vision for america, on the big issues of the day there really isn't much of a difference between all of our "big 3" small things are exagerated in importance in  order to draw distinctions but unlike the GOP guys who differ on abortion, torture, and immigration our candidates simply
squabble over details. It's time democrats pick a leader who has the best chance of bringing the country around to some type of universal health  care plan and stop worrying about the specifics that are meaningless right now, when is the last time a campaign position paper became legislation? Hillary and Edwards have good qualities but of the 3 who can redefine the nations poltical divide from aboput 50/50 to a reagan type 60-40 majority for change, I believe Obama can do it, and only Obama can do it.
by nevadadem 2007-05-31 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

By virtue of Obama's well formed cultural and political identity, he symbolizes a new era of American politics that acknowledges how far we've come without constantly looking back to see the corpses that line the path. So much of American politics has become denigrated by mindless assertions of identity politics - both on the right and left. The reactionary cultural politics from the Limbaughs, Dobsons and George Bush's of the world are based in part on the concerns of white, protestant men about their place in a globalized world. Matt and Chris have both written about the history of the new left, and of the cultural politics it engendered, but we sometimes forget the corresponding changes in the way the right organized and looked at the world. This "new right" (both the Neo-Cons and the Theo-Cons) took many tactical and organizational lessons from the civil rights movements, the anti-war movement and student's rights movements abroad.

The culture war in American politics has produced important progress, but it is sapping the energy of the public to produce many of the changes we must produce. In the areas of climate change, global competitiveness, and the crunch on the middle class, we need consensus, and we need it quickly. The historical moment requires political leadership to recognize these situations as crises before they metastasize out of our control. Only a politician who isn't battle worn with the scars of the last 40 years of political combat can legitimately claim the mantel of uniting the divergent cultural threads that are needed to generate real consensus.

Electing Obama doesn't exactly end the culture war, but it might amount to something of a ceasefire. He didn't personally participate in the key political fights of the 60s, or the 90s for that matter, and so he can approach the issues without accepting the cant of left or right.  His personal agenda is deeply progressive, and his search for consensus should also be considered a progressive - and fundamentally democratic - value. He can plausibly focus attention away from guns, gods and gays and onto sustainability, infrastructure and assistance.

That said, we're not talking about someone who does forgets the lessons these battles have taught us. If anything, he embodies these progressions in his very existence: he is the son of a multicultural, multinational upbringing that has pulled together parts of wildly different cultural practices to form a successful persona. I doubt if there is anyone else in national politics with whom you could discuss Said's Orientalism, the contours of a cap and trade system and the intricacies of constitutional law. The man simply has a breadth of knowledge and experience that is unprecedented in recent American presidential politics. I can't think of anyone who could be trusted to better represent the best our nation has to offer.

by Ozymandias 2007-05-31 02:11PM | 0 recs
The real reason

Also, Obama likes sweet music (Miles, Coltrane, the Fugees, Stevie, Dylan) and movies (One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest, Lawrence of Arabia, Godfather I and II).

by Ozymandias 2007-05-31 02:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Clinton. She's brilliant, has a team of loyal and impressive loyalists, and knows all the ways of power in DC. Also ... The First Female President!

And Obama. He embodies generational change, a real transformation not only of politics but of American self-image ... and image in the world.

Of course, Edwards. The man with the plans. The most progressive, populist candidate, unafraid of bold progressive leadership.

Richardson. Give the man a three-hour layover in any  war-torn country, and he'll give you a cease-fire agreement.

Dodd. Combines insider experience with impressive competence with truly liberal goals.

Gore. Gore. Gore. Please. Gore.

Right now, I'm leaning Edwards.

by BingoL 2007-05-31 02:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson

"Richardson. Give the man a three-hour layover in any  war-torn country, and he'll give you a cease-fire agreement."  That includes the USA.  We need him!

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Edwards for the following reasons:

a) Electability seems greater according to both the polls and how I understand the electorate generally rather than just Democratic circles.

b) He's not just an economic populist. He's someone who grew up with very little. He understands first hand being at the bottom, in the middle and at the top in our society. That's rare.

c) He "gets" the times. Democrats can gain so much if they only realized we aren't in 1980 or 1992 or 2004. But a whole new era is about to be ushered in of progressive dominance. As my first political science professor said by in college when I started  my major- the pendulum always swings. He was a conservative and it was the middle of the GOP revolution where the conservatives in the class were gloating-and needless to say- I am not.

e) He can change the definition of the center. What I like about him is that people perceive of him is that he is moderate when he is not. This isn't something he is doing- it's something people are perceiving. That's important. Reagan was transformative not because of anything he did, but because of what people perceived. Obama has the potential. Edwards is doing it right now. And HRC is not even on the list.

f) He's closest to me in foreign policy. I guess I would say I am a skeptic there of what solutions will work abroad. I am much more clear about the economic issues such as healthcare. I like that he pits the private sector against the public on this issue. It turns the conservative revolution on its head by embracing competition but with an active government as a part of it.

g) he has fire in his belly (not gore level but fire).

h) He seems to get labor issues.

Some areas of concerns:

a) Gay rights issues. He could be better.

b) He has shown bad judgment, ie with Iraq, but now he seems to be trusting his instincts, so this is a mixed bag.

c) Does he really trust his gut now?

d) How is he at building a coalition? A president must do this time, what Bill Clinton failed or didn't want to do, he must build a progressive movement.  This is the  moment to do this as it could lead to a new progressive movement that could last 20 to 50 years. In many ways Americans agree (even the conservative ones) with the philosophical ideals of the progressive movement. Does Edwards understand this? Of the candidates he seems most in touch (although again gore blows them all out of the water- especially his latest book).

by bruh21 2007-05-31 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Right now I support Edwards narrowly over Obama. Admittedly, it's wavering and I'm not sure I'm not holding too much allegiance to Edwards after being certain from late '02 that he was easily our best hope in '04.

Obama is more talented than Edwards. That's the waver variable. Edwards will give his standard speech and you know where it's going. Then he launches a familiar major point and follows it with an emphasized, "It's wrong. It's wrong..." Obama in that spot can ad lib and not be nearly as robotic or predictable. It's a simple difference in ability, like a quarterback who can execute any pace and loft as opposed to line drive reliant. And Obama will only get better during the course of a long campaign, slowly avoiding stumbles like a poor performance on health care in a Nevada forum. Edwards may already be at apex, after going through it once.

But Edwards puts North Carolina in play, while Obama probably does not. IMO, Edwards also has more of a chance to win vital Virginia. The bottom line is the electoral college and it amazes me the road to 270 is not properly handicapped and emphasized ahead of time. That means the ideal presidential and VP choices. It's not a matter of fooling people in those states, it's understanding what they will prioritize and what they will reject. And it's a billion times more effective to get the ticket right, than to use the pound-of-cure approach of more millions and more trips on a jet plane.

by Gary Kilbride 2007-05-31 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I am undecided.

I hope Gore will run, then my mind would be made up.

I like Edwards the least because I think he says anything to win. Many believe he has changed from when he ran in 2004. When did he ever stop running? When did he have the time to come to this broad-based political transformation? His ambition  
seems unrestrained.

I am probably leaning towards Obama, but I am concerned about his lack of boldness. I like Hillary but she is too hawkish for me in foreign policy, but I like her otherwise and she could still get my vote.

by alarabi7 2007-05-31 02:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

can you try to actually say who you support without going nasty?

by bruh21 2007-05-31 02:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Well I guess I am trying to explain why, for me, saying all the right things doesn't get my vote. I have to believe that the candidate will actually work hard to get it done and can actually get it done. I also have to believe that the candidate has an internal understanding that can drive his/her reactions and actions as president for issues we can't even guess will come up.
This is why, for me personally, I can't support Edwards.

I guess I could avoid saying anything about him, but when people read that I don't believe Obama is being bold enough they will say "Edwards is bold! He has real plans and details too! He is a real progressive"

by alarabi7 2007-05-31 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

You still managed to use the post to put down others. Neat trick.

by bruh21 2007-06-01 04:42AM | 0 recs
Edwards

I am firmly in the Edwards camp for multiple reasons. I like his jobs program, his plans to reform HUD, to reform NAFTA, his UHC plan is passable IMO, he wants to BAN DRE VOTING MACHINES and his wife said that it would be one of her top priorities as first lady to eliminate black box voting. I also like Edwards approach to terrorism, how he believes we need to lead compassionately to quell the hatred towards our country. Lastly, Edwards is not in government presently. He doesn't owe anyone in government or any lobbyists anything. If he gets the nod, and wins the general he'll push his progressive policy proposals harder then anyone. He'll owe Americans for the shot they gave him. Oh yeah, his wife is great too!

by Sarah Lane 2007-05-31 02:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Banning DRE Black Box Voting Machines

Bill Richardson already did that in NM in 2005.  Not only do we now exclusively use paper ballots statewide, but we also have an automatic audit, even if it could be beefed up a bit.

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:44PM | 0 recs
we can argue about electability and presentation

but all out candidates even Hillary would make for fine presidents, if somehow I knew for certain either of the 3 would be president and could not get that certaintly for any other I would immediately support the one I knew would win.

by nevadadem 2007-05-31 02:38PM | 0 recs
Edwards
1)Universal health care to include mental illness
2)Rural recovery plan - middle america needs help
3)College for those who want it. (3 boys now in college)
4)Predatory Lending reform
5)election reform
6)keeping all voluntary army - no draft
7)Ending poverty
8)resoring america's image globally
These are all very important to me.
by dk2 2007-05-31 02:43PM | 0 recs
I want to add

a big one  - FCC/ keeping the net free.

by dk2 2007-05-31 02:44PM | 0 recs
how about a case for Charlie Brown

1. Charlie Brown has HUGE support in the CA blogosphere. He has spend a great deal of time forming relationships with the bloggers across a huge state and I don't know of anyone who doesn't support him.

2. Charlie Brown is a great nexus between the netroots and grassroots. Not only does he have huge support with local bloggers, but he was DFA's first 2008 Grassroots All Star (only one to date).

3. I forced Ambassador Wilson to kick it in the lobby so Stoller could interview Charlie Brown

4. There is a great chance this will go to a special election -- which we could win -- in which case earlier support would be key

5. Charlie Brown is a great candidate for the district, I walked precincts, people are open to him

6. Charlie Brown raised great money last cycle despite zero support until the very end from DC -- he has proven he can raise money the hard way

7. John Doolittle is still in the hole when it comes to money and Charlie Brown has a huge financial advantage despite Doolittle was a member of GOP leadership until a few months ago

8. John Doolittle has run CA-04 with such an iron fist that the entire district is corrupt

9. Charlie has an amazing narrative -- not just his son in Iraq -- but also his kick-ass wife

10. Charlie appreciates the blogs

I know I'm getting ahead of myself at best and at worst trying to hijack the tread, but the blogs can do more for local campaigns than national (other than our veto ability)

by Bob Brigham 2007-05-31 02:53PM | 0 recs
I'll see your Charlie Brown...

and raise you a Chris Daly. Now that would be a campaign.

by Dan Ancona 2007-05-31 03:18PM | 0 recs
Re: I'll see your Charlie Brown...

I don't even know how to reply to that.

Daly is kinda like Edwards, no matter what should respect him because he is married to such a brilliant woman. But speaking of Daly, if he can find a candidate other than himself, maybe we should bother him about starting an actblue page.

by Bob Brigham 2007-05-31 03:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

First choice:  Bill Richardson.  He has the executive experience and diplomatic skills that separate him from the field.  Some question whether he has the charisma to win, but I give the American people credit to be able to weigh qualifications over appearances.  Has a record on taxes and the Second Amendment that would make an easy sell to independents and libertarian-leaning Republicans fed up with the direction their party has taken.

Second choice:  Barack Obama.  Lack's Richardson's experience, but is a more talented politician (in a good way.)  Seems to have the ability to handle the job and lead, and would present liberal ideas in a way that would appeal to independents and anti-war Republicans.

Deserve credit, but not quite presidential:  Dennis Kucinich and Mike Gravel.

Not likely to support:  John Edwards, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden, and Hillary Clinton.

by Lex 2007-05-31 03:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Hillary Rodham Clinton-
She is very intelligent and thorough. She has a great team of public policy and campaign advisors. She is very experienced in campaigning and public policy.

Barack Obama-
He is a freshface- celebrity candidate- a Generational change. He is the true role model to the younger generations. The Jack Kennedy or Bill Clinton.

John Edwards-
John Edwards is the candidate that feels your pain. He is the true compassionate candidate. He is the only candidate that is truely Anti War-despite mistakenly voting for the 2002 IWR, He is strong on economic security issues Universal Health Care, Livable Minumum Wages. He is a southerner who understand rural culture. I like Edwards during the early part of the 2004 Campaign when he took a potshot at Bush. He said something like" Just because you wear cowboy boots and walk around in the ranch does not mean you understand rural america". He was attacking Bush for not being a true Southerner- Bush is actually a New Englander.

Bill Richardson-
He is Westerner- Governor, Hispanic, Has Foriegn Policy Experience. He has a libetarian philosophy on Taxes and Guns. He is the perfect VP runningmate for Clinton,Obama,Edwards.

Joe Biden-
He is very smart knowledgeble on National Security and Law and Order issues. He is one of the bright members of the US Senate.

Chris Dodd.
Same comparison to Joe Biden very seasoned but is more progressive.

by nkpolitics 2007-05-31 03:14PM | 0 recs
Barack my world

Obama is telling the progressive story of this country in a way that people understand it better than any of 'em right now.

You people with your "Gore/Edwards" followed by laundry lists of X number of issues are killing me. Edwards sounds better at first glance to tweakers like us here blog readers, but he has serious perceptual issues amongst the general voting public. I saw him in Reno right after he announced, and this is a perfect example: someone lobbed him a softball on taxes or the economy and he went right into some baroque explanation about deficits and debt. I think he used the word "ratio" at some point. Complete whiff. You laundry listers would have looooved it the way the econ geek in me did, but that's a zero in terms of connection and persuasion.

Laundry lists suck. I just. Want. Someone. Who. Can. Tell. The. Story.

by Dan Ancona 2007-05-31 03:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Barack my world

Absolutely.

Everyone is nostalgic for Reagan and JFK because they connected with the people.

The whole time Edwards ran under Kerry, I thought he looked like a wimpy pretty boy with a big politician grin. Like Gore I love him as a public intellectual, he's got great stances on issues, but I sincerely fear he'd turn out to be another Carter. Nice smile. Ineffective.

by BlueThunder 2007-05-31 03:37PM | 0 recs
Hillary

1. She can win. We know a Clintonian strategy works: from governor, to president, to senator. HIllary is brilliant in her own right and she and Bill have exceptional political acumen. I know people on her campaign whom I trust; not so with other campaigns. I cannot wait until she and Bill really start campaigning. Despite everything the Right Wing Smear Machine has thrown at her, she still won Republican districts in upstate New York. She will fight back hard against any attack. Plus, current primary polling shows she leads nationally, and in most of the states. Plus, she has the potential to bring in huge numbers of new women voters.

2. A woman in the White House is long overdue. Other than Eleanor Roosevelt, I cannot think of any woman on the national level who I would consider presidential material (maybe Elizabeth Edwards, actually). Her presidency will change gender dynamics in huge ways: Bill's busy; he's got his own stuff to do, not including White House interior design or parties. The First Lady's duties will be professionalized. After Bill, we would 'go backward' in spousal equality to consider the first lady (the next president surely will be male) along socially defined gender roles and attributes. He can become the "First Spouse," de-gendering the First Lady's role, all thanks to Bill.

3. Bill Clinton. I truly believe his presence on the world stage will definitely help calm anti-Americanism. He's a great advisor, for foreign and domestic issues. It's a two-fer.

4. She's good on my issues (best on equal rights for gays). She brought health care to the front, is the most knowledgeable about it, and is the most qualified to fix it. She is well-liked by Republican senators; until we have a veto-proof majority, we need a president who knows how to navigate national politics, the congress, and the people-she can do it. Iraq is a mess, frankly, no one knows how to solve. However, I trust her to actually get down into the details and figure out how to do it with the world. Her ties to business make her credible in that world, not beholden to it, plus I would not doubt if some unions endorse her. Overall, she can get things done, and I trust her judgment.

by domma 2007-05-31 03:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Hillary

Well said. Everyone who works with her in real life have tremendous respect for her. She really is qualified to take on the challenges our country faces.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 04:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Edwards:

Americans tend to elect candidates they perceive as centrist. I don't- I usually vote for the leftmost candidate, but people polled perceive Edwards as moderate/conservative, and hillary as far left.
Based on their platforms, etc., in fact Edwards seems the most progressive, so if Americans will vote for the guy thinking he's middle of the road, why not?
Plus...current US senators tend to not get elected.
So, I really want to see a Democrat elected this time, and cynically focus on electability.
Edwards, Richardson, and Gore would all fit the bill in that none are current US Senators.

by ira500 2007-05-31 03:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Edwards moderate to conservative?  Hillary far left?  That is so backwards.  Edwards is far more liberal than the corporate boot-licker Hillary.  Too bad he's perceived as such a pretty boy.

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

OBAMA
1) His voting record. Progessive on all key issues.
http://www.vote-smart.org/voting_categor y.php?can_id=BS030017

2) He is the most appealing to Republicans of the candidates and hence has swing vote appeal

3) He can make even the most complex issues sound commensense: Of the idea that we need to open talks with Iran and Syria he said Reagan called Russia the Evil Empire and yet met with them all the time.

A lot of people here have mentioned Gore. Come on folks, Gore is great ---NOW. Where was the Gore we suddenly love the 8 years under Clinton, during his own run, and in the last 6 years. He is great now because he isn't runnning. I doubt that if you put him in a debate next to Romney or Thompson or Ginrich and he will look all that appealing to the mass voter. I love him as a public figure, a public intellectual, not as a politician.

by BlueThunder 2007-05-31 03:33PM | 0 recs
Make The Case For Your Candidate

My ideal candidate would be a mixture of three:

1. Kucinich - for all his flaws he is still the only one with a serious program to change politics, the economy, and foreign policy in a progressive direction: public investment, jobs & living wage, Medicare for All, universal high-quality education pre-K thru college, clean energy, sustainable agriculture, defense and foreign policy reform. Nobody else has had the guts to stake out such bold progressive positions on this full range of issues.

2. Dean - still the one person who really gets the politics we need better than anybody else. A politics of contrast ("I want to know . . . "), the 50-state strategy, fighting for working class voters who have become estranged from the party.

3. Obama - the charisma, the speaking ability, he's a superstar, no doubt about it. His 2004 convention keynote and Knox College commencement speeches are still about the best thematic defense of progressive politics out there.

The thing is, no one person has it all. Kucinich has the program, but not the politics or the charisma to seal the deal. Obama is too programatically cautious and too wrapped up in the "bring us together" theme that is not really appropriate politics at this particular time (but may be appropraite later, once we have vanquished the right). Dean was also pretty middle-of-the-road on program.

Having said all that, I'm not committed yet but leaning Edwards. He seems to have the best combination of all of these qualities right now.

by tgeraghty 2007-05-31 03:46PM | 0 recs
Make The Case For Your Candidate: Edwards

Rather than repeat what some of the Edwards supporters have typed, I will add a few other items.

Number One: He is authentic. He has his standards on appearance, but make no mistake about what he cares about: economic fairness and giving everyone a chance to succeed, when means some seed monies for investment in people, not just products.   He also can laugh at himself.

Number Two: Edwards is a solid family man and of excellent moral stature.  No one can refute that Mrs. Edwards is an asset, being smart, good hearted, and a genuine, equal partner who truly shares his values of respect, fairness, and optimism.  

Number Three: He believes education, universal health care, and access to the Internet are rights.  Hand guns and earned citizenship are privileges.  (source: Youtube)

Number Four: He stands strong with unions and believes they are the middle class builders.  He recognizes that not all manufacturing jobs will come back, but that new ones need to be created, and that the Service Industry is where workers should be able to organize for better wages and benefits.  He's correct because one cannot off shore those jobs.

Number Five: I like how he stands strong with the Netroots.  The "We the People" campaign video is a great way to get the community involved.

Number Six: I think he will bring our friends back to the table to help with foreign policy issues. He also supports education and other efforts to eradicate poverty in the poorest parts of the world and in our own country.   He was also the first to tell the media and us Bush's meme on "war on terror" was based on fear and not on solving the problems with dangerous people on many levels, not just the "it is my way or highway" or just raw force either.  Diplomacy is very important and I think he will put special emphasis there.

Number Seven: he cares about my mother, who lives from paycheck to paycheck, by understanding the complex issues of the elderly.  He walked a day in Elaine's shoes at a nursing home recently in cooperation with the SEIU.  Haven't seen another candidate do that yet.   He doesn't mind rolling up his sleeves at all.

Number Eight: He doesn't believe the government is the answer to all of our ills.  He believes we should take personal responsibility too and be active in our communities.  We should try to help ourselves as much as we can, but we can do it better together.

Could list more and more...

by benny06 2007-05-31 04:06PM | 0 recs
I'm for Revolution

Through failure of diligence or the reluctance to take to the streets, we and our forbearers have allowed this country to be taken over by special interests (i.e., corporations and wealthy power brokers). Those issues important to the common good, be they environmental, economic, or other, are not addressed without the approval or disinterest of the special interests. This feudal status quo will continue until the balance of power is restored to We the People.

No, I'm not a crazed radical, I'm a middle aged molecular biologist with kids, a retirement, and a country to worry about.

My dream is this. A Presidential candidate runs a competent campaign, playing his/her cards close to the vest (see footnote) so that the corporate media doesn't destroy his/her chances of winning. On Inauguration Day he/she announces that the country will be placed under Martial Law and that there will be a complete overhaul of the Constitution. Once ratified within two years time this President and all government officials (especially the Supreme Court) will step down and new elections will be held.

Important changes to the Constituion will include:

  1. Revocation of corporate personhood.
  2. Full and exclusive public funding of election campaigns.
  3. Fair and verifiable elections.
  4. Diversification of media ownership, reinstatement of some of the Fairness Doctrine, real public control of airways.
  5. Proportional representation and instant runoff voting.
  6. Rewriting of union, trade and corporate tax laws to reinvigorate the middle class, without which democracy cannot stand.
  7. Draconian corruption/lobbying laws.

Now is this going to happen as per my dream? Of course not. But which electable candidate best sees the big picture and can at least start the ball rolling in the right direction? Based in part on his new book, Al Gore appears to realize the importance of the times. He has commented on national TV that special interests have taken over the country. He is incensed about the loss of habeas corpus, torture, and the unitary executive.

A Gore presidency would give almost instant credibility to the USA in the international arena. His Vice President, be it Edwards or Obama, would gain the thing they are criticized the most for lacking, experience.

Footnote.
A big problem with the current system, especially since the corporate media dominates the message, is that if a progressive candidate told the truth about their progressive platform, they would never make it past the second primary. Recall that two weeks after Dean said he would diversify media ownership we had the "Dean scream" and Dean dropped like a rock. Thus we need someone who runs in the middle and then takes a hard left turn once elected. If we can keep that person from being assassinated, then so much the better. But that makes it is difficult to know if a candidate is a progressive or a centrist. Are they lying to get elected (as all Republicans do) or telling the truth? In my experience, most politicians run in the middle and then take a turn right after election, since special interest money controls politics. So it all comes down to money and influence. Our first job is to force the passage of Clean Money type election laws. When daddy pays the bills you can't expect to get your way.

by Ready2Fight 2007-05-31 04:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Obama, Obama, Obama

I'll get behind whoever wins the Democratic nomination, but I think that Obama will be both the strongest candidate and the most effective President.

First, let's not take lightly that Obama was alone in opposing the war in 2002. (Check out the video on youtube - he's emphatically opposed to the war). I know that Bill Clinton has been talking about how it's not fair to compare Obama and Hillary because Hillary was a Senator at the time. HOWEVER, all of Obama's Democratic primary opponents were cheerleading the war in 2002-04 while Obama had the judgement to speak out against the war. This tells us a few very important things about Obama:
a. He will stand up for convinctions on major progressive issues.
b. During a campaign, he will be uniquely able to attack our failed Iraq policies - as someone who had the foresight to oppose them from the start.

Second, as a college student, I can tell you that Obama excites young people way more than the other candidates. This is important, not only in terms of winning this election, but in terms of building  a lasting progressive majority. Political science studies demonstrate that a lot of people determine their party affiliation and ideology during their college years and early 20s. That's why FDR's New Deal built not only stronger policies, but also a lasting Democratic majority.

by Missouri Democrat 2007-05-31 04:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I know I already wrote my post for Clinton, for whom I will vote in the primary, but I think we also seriously need to mention:

Mike Bloomberg.

Watch out for his run as an independent in 2008. He  has up to $1 Billion in campaign money ready to go; and with his fiscally conservative economic policies and his socially progressive stances he could split the Democratic and Republican parties in half. If he runs, he could win.

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 04:46PM | 0 recs
Richardson will get it done

I'd be OK with most of the other candidates.  But Richardson is the one who excites me.  

Much of the conversation so far is about what a candidate represents or symbolizes; about what kind of person they are; or about the depth of their progressive beliefs.  Ya know what?  I don't care.

I want a President who's gonna get it done.  I want someone who knows how to bash some heads in when it's necessary.  Someone who will be appropriately stubborn and driven, appropriately charming and conniving, appropriately arm-twisting and horse-trading.

That's Richardson.  

He's pissed some people off with his ego and his hard edges.  That's just fine with me.  I was initially intrigued because I'm in the clean energy business, so of course I'd look at the only candidate with real expertise in that field.  But the more I've learned about him (check out the six-part not-always-complimentary Albuquerque Sun series), the more I've seen that Richardson is the purest politician in the field -- in the sense of knowing how to work the system to get things done.  He's my man.

(My first MyDD post, BTW.  Thanks for listening.)

by Shalom 2007-05-31 04:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson will get it done

I go for Richardson too. He's the only candidate to get anything done while running for President.

Richardson has a plan to get us out of Iraq by 2007;
He has an energy plan that uses a variety of ways of reducing our dependence on foreign oil;

The New Mexico legislature passed a resolution asking Congress to legalize hemp that will create many jobs in many states.

Gov. Richardson signed a medical marijuana bill. Marijuana is a well-known cancer cure; it's effective in treating Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, MS and is a good pain reliever. No adverse side effects.

He negotiated a nuclear cessation plan with the North Koreans.

Richardson is already off to a good start. Let's send him on to the White House.

by Hempy 2007-05-31 07:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson will get it done

Edwards scores B- by VOTE-HEMP on pro-hemp legalization policies

by jallen 2007-06-01 01:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson will get it done

Richardson...

You have to consider who, if elected could get the most done.... I don't dislike Hillary, or Obama, or others, but you'd have a hard time convincing me Richardson couldn't get the most accomplished.

Ideas without accomplishment are lost progress.

by bbeckham 2007-06-03 12:40PM | 0 recs
I'm Sorry
I can't find this series on google: do you have a link?
Thank You.
by anku 2007-05-31 09:16PM | 0 recs
Re: I'm Sorry
My fault, I should have Googled first and provided the link before posting.  It's the Albuquerque Journal, and it's a five part series on Richardson's entire political career.  You can find it here:
http://www.abqjournal.com/richardson/
by Shalom 2007-06-03 05:47AM | 0 recs
I'm Sorry

I can't find this series on Google: do you have a link?

by anku 2007-05-31 09:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson will get it done

I think Richardson is the most electable and most experienced candidate in the field.

Richardson is Hispanic which a Caucasian last name. His mother was Hispanic. Hispanic Population is the new electorate in the Democratic party- due to growing population.
Richardson is a Westerner- A swing region that is growing in population. Voters have a libetarian philosophy. Guns and Taxes. He has the CATO or NRA endorsements.
Richardson is a Governor. He has executive experience.
Richardson has foriegn policy and national security experience- Serving in the US House of Representatives, Ambassador to UN. He met face to face with brutal dictators like slobodon milosevic and kim jon il.

by nkpolitics 2007-06-01 06:39AM | 0 recs
Edwards is by far the best leader without a doubt

I'm a big Democratic donor. I spent 1-on-1 time with all three top candidates and almost a month analyzing the evidence. My focus was on leadership; how well they would do on global warming and Iraq. On a scale of 0 to 10 where Bush is a zero and JFK is a 10, Edwards=9, Clinton=6, Obama=2.5.

It's a really long analysis (20 pages), but here's a short example that really highlights the differences and that has a link to the longer analysis. Most everyone who has read it finds it pretty convincing; many have switched their preferences after reading it.

by skirsch 2007-05-31 05:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards is by far the best leader without a do

I'd love hear more from you about what impressed you so much about Edwards when you got to spend one on one time with him. I took a look at your sample page, and I was getting all the updates & action items from Edwards too. I've heard so many complaints about him putting pressure on Congress to not cave to Bush. The thing is, we all needed to do what Edwards did. We all needed to contact every Democrat and Republican in Congress and tell them to end the war. I'm still not quite sure I understand why the Dems folded their winning hand.

by Sarah Lane 2007-05-31 06:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Edwards.
I think many liberals like him more now than in'04, and trust him.

Obama is impressive but the word "compromise" comes to mind quickly and I rather like the liberal postions Edwards is taking on our issues.
 Just once, can we have a Democratic president who totes the hardline against the Neocons and does not compromise? I think that candidate is Edwards.

by bmelz 2007-05-31 05:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I'm for Obama

I love John Edwards, and absent Obama, I would be an enthusiastic supporter. I love that after losing in 2004 (and knowing that he would probably run again in 2008) he decided to start a poverty research center. I love the way he's running his campaign

But Obama is truly special. Here's an excerpt from his speech at the evangelical AIDS conference:

"Like no other illness, AIDS tests our ability to put ourselves in someone else's shoes - to empathize with the plight of our fellow man. While most would agree that the AIDS orphan or the transfusion victim or the wronged wife contracted the disease through no fault of their own, it has too often been easy for some to point to the unfaithful husband or the promiscuous youth or the gay man and say "This is your fault. You have sinned."

I don't think that's a satisfactory response. My faith reminds me that we all are sinners.

My faith also tells me that - as Pastor Rick has said - it is not a sin to be sick. My Bible tells me that when God sent his only Son to Earth, it was to heal the sick and comfort the weary; to feed the hungry and clothe the naked; to befriend the outcast and redeem those who strayed from righteousness.

Living His example is the hardest kind of faith - but it is surely the most rewarding. It is a way of life that can not only light our way as people of faith, but guide us to a new and better politics as Americans.

For in the end, we must realize that the AIDS orphan in Africa presents us with the same challenge as the gang member in South Central, or the Katrina victim in New Orleans, or the uninsured mother in North Dakota.

We can turn away from these Americans, and blame their problems on themselves, and embrace a politics that's punitive and petty, divisive and small.

Or we can embrace another tradition of politics - a tradition that has stretched from the days of our founding to the glory of the civil rights movement, a tradition based on the simple idea that we have a stake in one another - and that what binds us together is greater than what drives us apart, and that if enough people believe in the truth of that proposition and act on it, then we might not solve every problem, but we can get something meaningful done for the people with whom we share this Earth."

I think this demonstrates many of the qualities that I respect about Obama. He isn't satisfied with easy compassion--the AIDS orphan or the transfusion case. He tries to convince people that  everybody, no matter how far they have strayed, deserves our compassion. While I have no doubt that most progressive candidates believe that, nobody makes the case as forcefully as Obama.

I also admire Obama for being honest and respectful with the people he talks to. I know he's been accused of pandering, but I think he does the opposite. He didn't go to Detroit just to discuss how important the auto industry was, he told them that they had a role to play in reducing global warming. He didn't speak at the kickoff of the Hamilton Project just to tell people how much he admired their work. He told them that they don't take seriously enough the losers in free trade deals. He didn't go down to Selma just to talk about how great the civil rights movement was. He told people to "get off the couch, put on your marching shoes, let's go do some politics."

In most years, I would want the candidate who agrees with me the most. But this year is different. For the first time in a very long time, we have a candidate who could transform American politics so that we start implementing bold progressive solutions. That's what the campaign against "the smallness of our politics" is about. It's not that we don't know what we should do, or that not enough people agree about the right thing to do. It's that most Americans believe that we can't get it done. It's too big, too hard, it's just not possible. Obama is the first person I've ever seen that seems to be able to convince a lot of cynical people that we can.

by nsuchar 2007-05-31 05:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Hillary Clinton:

Because I like, trust and admire her.   She has been helping people all of her adult life and I believe, whether she makes it to the Presidency, or not, she will likely spend the rest of her life helping others.  She is sometimes, errantly, called power-hungry.  I, and many who support her, disagree with that assumption.  She is, more accurately, change-hungry. And she is extremely confident in herself and ready to hit the ground running.  

Hillary also knows the difficulty any Democratic candidate is going to have going up against the GOP in the general election; and she will be the most prepared to deal with it and the GOP knows this. Watching Hillary's campaign unfold over these past few months has impressed me more than I ever imagined.  Her campaign, to me, is a microcosm of what her Presidency will be like - organized, collaborative and always ready for whatever presents itself or for whatever happens.  

On domestic policy:
Over the past few days, and with relatively little fanfare and press, Hillary Clinton has been unveiling her  vision for "Shared Prosperity"
http://www.hillaryclinton.com/feature/in equality/
She outlines the flawed economic policies of the current administration, one by one,  before laying out her nine point plan to get our country working again.  For all of us.   This is Hillary's "Vision".

Today, she presented Version 1.0 of her "Agenda", where the key operative word is "innovation":
Innovation Agenda - Version 1:
http://www.http://www.hillaryclinton.com feature/innovation?sc=8

"THE BACKGROUND":
America is still an "innovation superpower." We have the world's best university system, an entrepreneurial culture, and the availability of risk capital. Also, we spend more than $300 billion a year on research and development (approximately 2.7% of GDP), more than any other nation. Our products and services are in demand the world over. Last year, Americans captured all of the Nobel Prizes in science.

"THE CHALLENGES":
Other nations are increasingly investing in their innovation infrastructure, positioning themselves to challenge our leadership. In the last 12 years, China has doubled the percentage of GDP dedicated to R&D, and over that same period GDP itself doubled. Also, our share of the world's scientists and engineers has declined, and too few American college students are preparing themselves for these careers. Fewer than 20% of American undergraduates are earning degrees in science or engineering, compared with more than 50% in China. And, we now rank 25th in broadband deployment.

THE SOLUTIONS: Hillary Clinton proposed a 9-point plan to renew the nation's commitment to research; help create the premier science, engineering, technology and mathematics workforce; and upgrade our innovation infrastructure. Those nine points can be reviewed at the link below, and I really recommend that everyone read them:
http://www.hillaryclinton.com/feature/in novation/?sc=8

Also, Hillary's health care initiative is being presented in three parts. Cost-cutting. Improving Quality.  Universal Access. Details can be accessed here:
http://www.hillaryclinton.com/files/pdf/ healthcarecosts.pdf

I have followed Hillary Clinton's career for almost three decades -- as a First Lady in Arkansas for 12 years and the work she did there for children in education and healthcare; to her years as First Lady in the Whitehouse, including her "Vital Voices" initiative, established in collaboration with Madeleine Albright, to help women all over the world; to her past and current work as a Senator for New York, my home state.  

This video, narrated by Bill Clinton ...
http://www.hillaryclinton.com/video/27.a spx ...
only begins to touch on the impact Hillary has had on this country and around the world.  I don't believe the American electorate will allow a candidate with such qualifications to fall between the cracks. Hillary is leading in the polls among all demographic groups for a reason.  As the campaign continues to unfold and more and more information is presented to the public, I predict her numbers will only go up. Today, on another blog, a person who does not support Hillary asked me what Hillary has ever done for the poor in our country, with a strong implication that she has never done a thing for anyone who has less than she has.  It is Hillary's mission now to get the word out to everyone; and I think she's been doing a great job so far.

I am a 60 year old male with a wife, two daughters, four nieces, six aunts and many female friends.  So I also have a vested interest in seeing the glass ceiling broken.  If Hillary can do that, the girls and women in this country, and in other countries, will be the benefactors. I always encouraged my daughters to aim high.  At this time, I have one daughter who is experiencing gender discrimination in her workplace.  We still have a long way to go.  I believe we need Hillary Clinton to turn things around in this early part of the 21st century. I see her as a fixer, and our country needs to be fixed.

I have not discussed Hillary's foreign policy platform; the evolution of her stance on Iraq and the Middle East, or the qualifications that I think make her the most prepared to deal with international issues.  All of that information is available on her Senatorial and Presidential websites and it, too, is impressive.

http://www.hillaryclinton.com
http://clinton.senate.gov/issues/

by samueldem 2007-05-31 06:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

You trust Hillary?!?  I sure as hell don't.  She's already saying nothing in as many words as possible.  She can't even come correct on Iraq, for goodness sakes!  I don't trust her in the Senate, much less as President.  She's my very last choice in the field, behind Gravel and Kucinich.

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:35PM | 0 recs
Corrected Link for above post re Hillary
Today, she presented Version 1.0 of her "Agenda", where the key operative word is "innovation":
Innovation Agenda - Version 1:
http://www.hillaryclinton.com feature/innovation?sc=8
by samueldem 2007-05-31 06:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

My top four:

1. Vice President Albert Gore Jr.

  1. Governor Howard Dean
  2. Governor Mark Warner
  3. Governor Brian Schweitzer
  4. General Wesley Clark

I'd like to support a great candidate.  Ideally one of the candidates on this list, preferably the one right at the top.

But I expect I'm going to be disappointed.

Maybe one of these guys will be willing to run in 2012.

by Brian Watkins 2007-05-31 06:17PM | 0 recs
Kucinich

The only candidate who voted against the original Iraq war authorization, and has been a leader of the progressive and antiwar forces in Congress.

One of the only two candidates (Richardson is the other) who would withdraw ALL American forces from Iraq, not just combat forces.

The candidate most strongly opposed to war with Iran.   (As opposed to ALL the top tier candidates.)

The only candidate who supports universal health care with a single payer.

Introduced a bill to impeach Cheney.

Not a perfect candidate - kos and Chris have made thoughtful criticisms - but on the issues (and aren't they what's really important?), Kucinich is head and shoulders ahead of the others.

by Jay Gold 2007-05-31 06:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Kucinich

He also does a marvelous Donald Duck voice (timecode 2:22).

by bowiegeek 2007-05-31 10:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Kucinich

"kos and Chris have made thoughtful criticisms"

I'm not so sure about that. Take a look at the claim of Kucinich being the seventh worst mayor that keeps getting thrown around. If you actually check out what the online excerpt of the book says:

Only thirty-one years old when elected, Cleveland's "boy" mayor had failings that were not the sins of venality or graft for personal gain, but rather matters of style, temperament, and bad judgment in office.  Kucinich earned seventh place the hard way: by his abrasive, intemperate, and confrontational populist political style, which led to a disorderly and chaotic administration.

Cleveland -- like a lot of other Rust Belt cities in the '70s -- was a mass of corruption and downward-spiraling economic fortunes. Kucinich gets the blame for leading "the first major city to default since the Great Depression" but the fact is that New York City barely escaped default three years earlier only through the intervention of 2.3 billion in federal funds (remember the headline "Ford to City: Drop Dead"? Kucinich had been mayor about a year at the time Cleveland defaulted. Cities don't get into a situation where they're about to default overnight.

Half of the profile in the online version is given to his post-mayoral dabbling in spirituality. I sort of remember someone here being daubed with that brush, too. Astrology, anyone?

Frankly, it makes no difference to me whether Kucinich thinks he met Shirley MacLaine in a previous life or if he believes he's eating the flesh of Christ when he takes communion. I have to swallow my amazement that anyone believes any of that crap and hope that whoever sits in the Oval Office isn't going to make spectacularly stupid decisions on domestic and foreign policy.

by darrelplant 2007-05-31 10:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I was waiting for Gore (and if he came in, I'd probably leap right over to his campaign), but at the Democratic convention in California, I was really impressed with Edwards. I wasn't alone. I talked to other friends who decided that they wouldn't hold out for Gore, but would get active in Edward's campaign. I haven't done much, but I did give him a donation. Right now, his program for health care, his concern for poverty, and his position on the war, coupled with his apology, which I take to be sincere, puts him on top, in my opinion.

Sharon Toji
Irvine California

by SharonToji 2007-05-31 06:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I am an Obama supporter, and have given him cash to prove it.

I was really undecided on who I supporting for president, until I read Obama's book on how he read The World Is Flat by Tom Friedman.

Point being: He gets the global economy, he gets free trade.

Secondly.
I've always been a very worldly person, and I've always looked at policies and thought about what the rest of the world might think of it. Therefore, I truly think it will shatter the world's negative opinion of us if we elect a black man into office.

Racist? Maybe mildly, yes. I also think other nations will be more intimidated by a black man than they would some lanky white dude (Kucinich, I'm lookin' at you).

Point: Black is good for world opinion.

Lastly for now, he gets me. Am I bringing this down to a personal level? Yes, I am, and here it goes.
Obama was raised by his mother (as was I) and eventually a stepfather came into his life (just like me). He understands the frustrations and restrictions that come with the territory, and I believe he's the kinda guy who would slap a hand on my shoulder, shake me around in a buddy sort of way, and say "need help? I got your back, what do you need?"

by Brad ODonnell 2007-05-31 06:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

What do you mean about free trade?  I am so backed up on my reading list, I haven't gotten around to reading any of Obama's books yet.

by jallen 2007-05-31 07:26PM | 0 recs
Addition to My Hillary Commentary

In keeping with the comments I made upthread about Hillary's "Innovation Agenda - Version 1"
here is a link:

http://www.mercurynews.com/valley/ci_603 2709

Hillary Clinton brings innovation agenda to Silicon Valley
Proposes $50 billion energy research agency
By Julia Prodis Sulek
Mercury News
Article Launched: 05/31/2007 07:02:22 PM PDT

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton spoke the language of Silicon Valley on Thursday when she laid out an "innovation" plan to the valley's high-tech leaders aimed at creating new jobs, encouraging math and science education, and "bringing the information age to every corner of the country."
"Call this version 1.0 of my innovation agenda," the former first lady and New York senator said, suggesting a partnership with the group to "tweak it and fine tune it."

As part of her nine-point plan, Clinton said she would create a $50 billion energy research agency to reduce energy dependence and the threat of global warming; increase the research budgets of the National Science Foundation, and increase investment in research at the National Institute of Health.

by samueldem 2007-05-31 06:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I really like several of the comments here.

I echo tgeraghty in appreciation of Kucinich's politics, Dean's political maneuvering, Obama's charisma, and Edwards' combination of these. And I really like Elizabeth Edwards' integrity and style -- I'd much rather elect her as the first women President.

But I have been disappionted by enough politicians and watched their shenanigans for a long enough time to know that no politician will act the way that I want them to all the time (or even most of the time). In order to run for the presidency they all must have very large egos which will get in the way at some point. To win, they must all tell lies and sell at least part of their souls to those with money and power -- to get this far in the game they are already experienced in doing that.

So I am most in sympathy with the comments of Jenifer Fernandez Ancona that the best candidate is one who builds and empowers a grassroots movement -- who helps us build a progressive infrastructure of think tanks, media, activist training centers, etc. It is us who will fight for progressive causes and will hold the President's feet to the fire after he/she gets elected. Jenifer thinks Obama would be best in empowering a progressive movement, but at this point, I'm not sure.

Still, any of the Democrats would be acceptable to me. All of them have some good points and none of them will be as horrible as Bush or the Republican candidates (perhaps Ron Paul excepted). I can get behind any of them, but I'm sure I'll also be pushing whoever gets elected to be honest and fight for progressive policies. They will all need to be pushed and held accountable.

by RandomNonviolence 2007-05-31 07:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Hillary,
when Hillary said she was in, I was really excited. The jumping up and down kind of  excited. It was really weird, because while I stay informed, politics tend not to get me excited.  It makes me sad, cynical, sometimes depressed, but not really excited. I am really proud of the fact that we have a female candidate, who is in fact more than just a female candidate, she is a presidential candidate. When Elizabeth Dole ran, her campaign was ridiculed from the beginning.  She was just not taken seriously.  We've had women CEOs, governors, senators, and yet when a woman tried to run for President, it was considered a joke.  Enter Hillary, and the joke is over.  They may castigate her, smear her, but they won't underestimate or dismiss her.  

I think a Hillary Clinton administration will do a lot to better the lives of women and children.  On an international level I think there will be a collective sigh of relief if Hillary is elected.  I think the world community has mostly positive recollections of the Clinton years, and they would actively reach out to work with us immediately.  An Edwards or Obama administration would be greeted warily, just because they are unknown and trust would have to be established.

The most disturbing parts of the George Bush presidency has been the assault on what I see as fundamental American principles.  Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, habeas corpus, National Security Letters, wire tapping without any court supervision, lack of adherence to the Geneva Convention.  I am hopeful that having been in the White House and having a full understanding of our place in the world, Hillary will work to restore or adhere to the rule of law and restore our moral authority.

I guess more than liking Hillary, I respect her.  I thinks she is dedicated, hardworking and committed and I hope she will be our next POTUS.

by Kingstongirl 2007-05-31 07:28PM | 0 recs
Yes Obama, No Edwards

I lean toward supporting Obama because he the candidate that seems committed to governing -- effectively and progressively. No other candidate seems to understand that he or she is running to be become a chief exec, someone who has the power to realize great change but must also work within a budget and be able to compromise, etc. The others seem more concerned with well polished policy ideas and populist rhetoric (Edwards), or establishing a tough persona (Hilary), or banale claims about having the experience to make the trains run on time (Biden, Dodd, etc). Obama understands that you shouldn't be scrambling to be the 'purest progrssive,' as if someone that simply says the right things should merit your support for the most important position in the world.

When you get to the important stuff, Edwards might say the right thing, but he does the wrong thing. His misjudgement on the war doesn't go away because he apologized for it; it's in his resume. Also, consider this: Had Edwards decided to run hard for reelection to the Senate in 2004 rather than beginning his permanent campaign for President, we would have an additional Democratic Senator, and the Senate would have had the votes to send a stronger Supplemental Approps bill back to Bush. Were Edwards still serving in the Senate, we would have a greater chance of ending the war sooner.

That's another case of poor judgement on his part.

by texas sense 2007-05-31 07:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Yes Obama, No Edwards

I think Edwards thought that with the political climate the way it was in NC in 2003 when he decided to run for pres he would have lost his seat. It was when the Iraq war started to fall apart the nation moved back to the "50-50" split again.

by nevadadem 2007-05-31 08:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Yes Obama, No Edwards

Wrong. All the polls right up to election day clearly showed Edwards would have had a solid win had he chosen to run for re-election to his NC senate seat.

by Quinton 2007-06-01 02:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

John Edwards
He's always on the offensive and keeps up to date on the latest Administration outrage. He's like us in this way, tracking and hunting the bad guys and giving a shout out for the poor.  For instance, he sent a letter to the FCC on spectrum policy and printed it online as a heads up for a later action event in Feb.
http://www.tpmcafe.com/blog/coffeehouse/ 2007/may/31/john_edwards_and_spectrum
See TMP Cafe, Art Brodsky was surprised.

There were 199 articles on John Edwards' demand that congress stop subsidizing Big Oil and start investigating price gouging. He put out a plan to bring down gas prices.

I like his web site that is packed with things to do, ways to organize like for Memorial Day I organized a letter writing event "Dear Any Soldier," for our senior center; we read the letter aloud and so felt better on a sad day.

It felt great when Edwards asked us to tell Congress to stand up to George Bush. It's like the Dean campaign in that it's all about we the people.

John Edwards calls himself a populist. I've long wished to see a populist in the WH before I die - but really never expected my dream to come true. He's all about social and economic justice which I find authentic having read Four Trials, about his uneven contests with corporate lawyers. Edwards has his groove now, standing up for ordinary people like the people he grew up with, worked with and fought for; he wants what is good and just for the people like me, a woman without work or healthcare and up against two powerful insurance companies, relying on a law firm that specializes in my brain injury.

Edwards isn't waiting for Bush to vacate the WH - he's working on change now with union organizing and helping to pass minimum wage in state legislatures. He's calling on his supporters to do community work as well as political work.

I think this is the time for John and Elizabeth to make the greatest difference in our and their lives. The time is right. They live in a different time, I think, one day at a time facing her death, and death of a cherished marriage. They show so much courage and character and thier leadership style evolves.

I want to say about southern voters that it would be a very good change to reunite all regions of the country in our party. Nixon and Reagan and Bush divided citizens along hate/fear lines, but it's not permanent. I believe in unity, community, harmony - not scapegoating. The worst thing in the rural south is the poverty and the lack of solutions and opportunity, lack of trust in govenment as an expression of we the people. John Edwards has promised southerners that if nominated he'll return to ask for the vote in the south.

John Edwards is a southern gentleman and that counts for a lot. For one thing, he has the friendly manners and slow speech (sometimes) that is easy to hear for people who hear slowly. Like Al Gore speaks slowly, but was ridiculed for it by MSM know-nothings.

All these qualities may be true of Obama, too. I don't know him that well, just that my kids love him and will get involved in a campaign for the first time. I'm looking forward to the focus group on CNN Monday with Obama, Edwards, and Clinton - on poverty and faith.

A last thought - the smear machine is in high gear against Edwards with hundreds of articles and blogs each day. Check out google. They've got their narrative down pat, Sissy rich frat boy is a hypocrite who wastes electricity and lives in a mansion so can't care for the poor. Huh?  

by mrobinsong 2007-05-31 09:29PM | 0 recs
Edwards Has Good Hair

The MSM is already pandering to the RWSM's narrative. The MSM hates any Dem politician with better hair than Tweety.

by JollyBuddah 2007-06-01 09:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Undecided view here:

So, I've been paying nominal attention to stuff, have not done a huge amount of hard-core proactive research.  Much of what I currently think is on the basis of what has broken through to me, which is definately different to be sure that what they actually stand for.

It does seem that picking one's candidate really depends on what your priorities are.

Policy - Edwards, hands down.  He is making substansive suggestions. However, I do echo pie in the sky questions already noted.

Resume - Richardson.  Energy experience, congress, executive experience, diplomatic experience.  Western Gov.

Narrative- Anyone who doesn't think Obama is at least twice as far along as the next guy on this doesn't have any perspective. He is the only one who understands that story comes first. I don't know if that means that his people are really bright or everyone else's people are really dull, but thats a different conversation. But I seriously never hear anything other than narrative. New politics.  Got it.  okay.  

I think I'll end up making my decision by prioritizing narrative (which I connect pretty closely with electability) or policy, so Edwards or Obama. But I think it sucks that the weakest of these candidates (Richardson) has the best resume, by far. Edwards won't sell in the South, and we're gonna win Illinois no matter who we run.  

by rallydemocrat 2007-05-31 09:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I can't decide.  If Gore was in, I would support him merely for having the balls to speak truth to power.  I met him in 2000 and thought he was great in person, but on TV he sucked.  I think he's learned how to be more "real" and I hope that would come across.  I think he has the respect of a lot of people for his prescience on global warming.  

But assuming he's not in, I have to fall back to Hillary, albiet reluctantly.  Having listened to my Republican parents from New Jersey constantly berate her, ever since she didn't divorce Bill, I can't join the long list of Dem bloggers who trash her.  I've defended her too long.  I think, though, that she is like Gore in 2000 - too stilted, consulted and manufactured to generate much excitement.  But, I trust her common sense.  If we are to, as Gore suggests, go with Reason over Fluff, then Hillary's got a good, middle-of-the-road perspective and has been through the health care battles enough to know how to get things done.  This is why I do *not* support Obama.  I love the guy, but we need someone with more substance, experience, and simply the gritty bare-knuckles strength to beat down the worst of the conservatives.  I don't think he is there, yet, but I will be ready to support him in 8 years.

Finally, Richardson.  I love his resume, his straight-talking attitude and his electability.  But again, he misses out on the charisma!  

My favorite is Gore-Obama.  Wow.  Unstoppable I think...

by optionsf 2007-05-31 09:52PM | 0 recs
Hillary's Da one

I am supporting Hillary Clinton.  I think she is the best candidate and its time for a woman to clean up the White House corruption.  I saw her at an event in North Las Vegas.  It was a packed house and people of all ages were excited about her.  It doesn't hurt that she will bring with her Clinton's best people so she can hit the ground running. We cannot afford someone untested right now with Russia talking about an Arms Race.  She can send Bill on Peace Missions all over the world.  So many other countries have had women leaders -- but then so many countries also have single payer healthcare -- Hey Hey USA get with the program, its a new day.

by changehorses08 2007-05-31 09:54PM | 0 recs
John Edwards

I agree with his values. Decency, respect for others' rights to a fair place in the world, honesty, justice, responsibility. I love his courage. He is challenging all of us; he's putting it all out there, and not holding back. I love his vision. He sees that problems are deep and related, and that solutions need to be, too. I love his practical intellect and his optimisim; he's fully aware of all the problems we face and their magnitude, and yet optimistic, and intelligent enough, not to be daunted, and to see a matching array of solutions. In our beloved country where too many institutions are in a backward and downward spiral, where we don't seem able to see cause and effect, or to discern patterns, or to act sensibly in time, he points out, in detail, paths that will take us forward; actions that we can take in time. We can get our country back. We can do something about climate change. We can show the world our better angels. (Did you see that I wrote "we." He also has the ability to communicate that optimisim and to inspire and convince others to act.) And, again, and again, I love his courage.

by applegreen 2007-05-31 10:15PM | 0 recs
Biden is the answer
Joe Biden is what democrats say they are looking for in a Presidential
candidate. He's a plain & tough talker (he talks middle class). More importantly we need
someone in the presidency that has extensive foriegn policy experience
to extricate us out of Junior Bush's hellish mess. Biden is the best speaker, thinker & has the most presidential presence of anyone in either party. Biden/Richardson would be a great ticket.
by MajGenDude 2007-05-31 11:14PM | 0 recs
Edwards, with a caveat

What's not to like about Edwards?  He's right on Iraq, health care, and the Internet.  He refuses to suck up to Fox.  He's already run on a platform of combatting income inequality.  And he polls better than any of the other Dems in head-to-head matchups with the RudyMcRomney trio.

My caveat is that I can't see him winning the Dem nomination without at least half-decent support among blacks, where Hillary and Obama are sucking up all the oxygen, leaving Edwards in single digits.  If Edwards doesn't do something about this, I think he's toast.

by RT 2007-06-01 02:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards, with a caveat

Edwards is right on Iraq? Since when?

by Mystylplx 2007-06-01 12:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Gore, for the same reason I supported him eight years ago. He's the greenest candidate. I'll support a candidate that believes that we can live in a society that safeguards the earth.

by misscee 2007-06-01 04:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

Well, so far,  it is Edwards for me.  But I like that Obama expressed a need for public financing of elections......I have 4 times asked Hillary what big corporations contribute to her campaign and still no answer.  It is time for a change!  I am sick and damn tired of these shitheads that are totally out of touch with the people and, let's face the truth and actually do something about it folks!!  WE MUST START HERE IF WE DO NOT WANT TO KEEP GETTING SCREWED:

           TOTAL public financing of elections

           The end of lobbying as we know it
Please....someone just tell me they agree!

by Justifiablyangered 1 2007-06-01 07:50AM | 0 recs
Obama

For many many reasons, but perhaps the most important is he's the only candidate, who has a chance, who didn't bend over and spread his cheeks for the Bush administration in 2002.

by Mystylplx 2007-06-01 12:08PM | 0 recs
GORE???!!!
Why so many Gore votes?
Has everyone forgotten who Gore's VP would have been? Lie-berman! Come on! How is it that Iraq is pretty much the #1 issue in America and here everyone is calling for Gore, whose side-kick would have been Lieberman!
by BlueThunder 2007-06-01 12:14PM | 0 recs
The Case for Gov. Bill Richardson

Governor Bill Richardson is arguably the most qualified candidate for President in a generation.  He served fourteen years in Congress, and was the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and Secretary of Energy in the Clinton Administration.

For the past five years, he has been the Governor of New Mexico.  Governor Richardson has traveled the world to promote peace and negotiate the release of political prisoners and Americans held hostage.  That is a synopsis of Governor Richardson's political career.  

Why should one specifically support Governor Richardson?

I have two reasons.  

First, the practical:  Governor Richardson will win in November 2008.

The Presidential election of 2004 demonstrated the fallacy of the argument that all Democrats need to do is line up behind a candidate, generate a massive turnout and victory will be ours.

John Kerry received more votes than any other Democratic candidate for President in history, including President Clinton.  Yet Kerry still lost.  

On the other hand, as we saw in the 2006 Congressional elections, when Democrats attract votes from Republicans and Independents, Democrats win.  

New Mexico politics mirrors the partisan split in America today.  In the last two Presidential elections, the outcome of the vote in New Mexico was decided by less than 1% of the ballots cast.

Governor Richardson has been the most successful governor at the ballot box in New Mexico history.  In a state evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats, Governor Richardson won his first term in office by a 56 to 39 percent margin.

Four years later, when the campaign issue was his leadership and performance, Governor Richardson was re-elected by a 68 to 32 percent vote - more than twice his margin of victory in 2002.  Forty percent of the Republicans that went to the polls in New Mexico last November voted for Governor Richardson.  

Governor Richardson knows how to communicate with and obtain the support of Democrats, Republicans and Independents.  That is precisely the type of candidate we must have to retake the White House in 2008.

Then add Governor Richardson's Latino and Western heritage into the mix.  Just as it was a source of pride for Irish-Americans and Catholics when JFK ran for President, the same phenomenon will take place in 2008 among Latinos.  One of the key reasons Bush won in 2004 is that he gained over 40% of the Latino voter, the best result ever for a Republican Presidential candidate.  The Latino and Western vote is critical in 2008 - which is why the Democratic National Convention next year is in Denver.

With Governor Richardson at the top of the Democratic ballot the Bush success with Latino voters will be reversed.  California will remain solidly in the Democratic camp.  Republican states such as Nevada, Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico will shift to blue states.  Florida is ideally suited to revert to Democratic control with Governor Richardson as the Democratic candidate for multiple reasons, including his stance on 2nd Amendment issues.  

No longer will the fate of the Democrats depend upon the outcome of one state - that the Republicans can expend enormous resources on and win.  It will be the Republican Presidential candidate's turn to play defense and struggle (in vain) to preserve Florida and the Southwest as red states, while losing badly in the blue states Kerry carried in 2004.

If Governor Richardson becomes the Democratic nominee for President, the Democrats will win in a landslide.  

The second reason why we should support Governor Richardson is the most important reason:  Governor Richardson will be a great President.

Governor Richardson possesses the best combination of experience, knowledge, leadership skills and vision of the candidates.

Governor Richardson is a leader.  He is goal-oriented, responsible, assertive and confident.  He has the ability to quickly evaluate a situation but is not rigid in his thinking and will modify policy when necessary.  He takes a practical approach to governing, focusing on solutions to problems rather than ideology.

Governor Richardson has been called a "force of nature."  When he served in Congress, he was regarded as one of the hardest working members, respected for his intelligence and detailed knowledge of the issues.  "You won't find a person who works harder," earlier this year stated Rep. Dan Foley, the Republican whip in the New Mexico House of Representatives.  

Governor Richardson fights for the principals he believes in.  I offer two of many examples:

First, while Secretary of Energy, against opposition in Congress and even criticism from within the Clinton Administration, he acknowledged the Energy Department's long history of denying responsibility for workers' injuries at the nation's nuclear weapons plants.  Governor Richardson successfully lobbied Congress to enact legislation providing payments and medical benefits to the workers that developed cancer and other serious diseases.

Second, in April of this year, Governor Richardson spoke at Rally to Save the People of Darfur in San Francisco.  He was the only Presidential candidate that took the time out of his or her campaign schedule and attended the rally.

Prior to speaking, Governor Richardson was asked by a reporter why he was there, the rally would not have aided his campaign.  Governor Richardson's response was simple and an inspiration to all fighting for social change:  "You have to be part of the causes you believe in."  

Governor Richardson has traveled to Sudan and visited the refugee camps in Darfur.  Unlike so many people in Washington he has never given up on Africa.  Ending the genocide in Darfur is a cause Governor Richardson believes in and has raised the awareness of among the world press and global community.  

As governor, he has had an outstanding record.  Governor Richardson has created new jobs, increased school funding, expanded healthcare coverage, extended civil rights protections to include sexual orientation, made New Mexico a model for the rest of nation in promoting clean energy and fighting global warming, while at the same time creating new, high paying jobs, cutting taxes to promote sustainable growth and balancing the state budget.  

Governor Richardson understands that at its core the Democratic Party must be the party of economic progress.   He is committed to eliminating barriers on the opportunity of all Americans to share in the American Dream.

Governor Richardson is the product of two nations, Mexico and the United States.  His childhood friends included many of the poor in the neighborhood where his family lived in Mexico City.  He has seen first hand the devastating impact of poverty on families and children.  His binational upbringing necessitated understanding and then bridging two cultures.  This laid the foundation for Governor Richardson as an adult to become a peacemaker among nations and an expert in the art of diplomacy.

On Iraq, Governor Richardson has eloquently stated:  "The War in Iraq is not the disease. Iraq is a symptom. The disease is arrogance.  The next President must be able to repair the damage that's been done to our country's reputation over the last six years. It's why experience in foreign affairs has never been more important."

Governor Richardson is only candidate that has called for the complete withdrawal of American troops from Iraq, without leaving any residual forces.  He fully appreciates that our troops are in a no win situation, in which they have become the targets of all sides in a civil war.  He also knows that no lasting peace in Iraq or the region can be achieved without direct and committed action by the President.  Governor Richardson is the only candidate that can deliver on the promise of a complete withdrawal combined with a diplomatic offensive for the Middle East.

With Governor Richardson we get two for the price of one:  a can-do leader on domestic issues and an experience diplomat that will personally lead our foreign policy.  

In closing, is it important to you to have a President who is an expert on energy issues and is committed to dramatically reducing both greenhouse emissions and our dependence on oil from the Middle East?  

Should we have a President that will lead the adoption of comprehensive immigration reform in accordance with the ideals upon which our nation was founded?

What is the value to you and your families to live in a world where the United States is respected because our foreign policy is based on, not in conflict with, international law?  

Governor Richardson will heal America and restore our place in the world.  He will be a great President and deserves our support.

by Stephen Cassidy 2007-06-01 12:57PM | 0 recs
Re: The Case for Gov. Bill Richardson

Those are great points, Mr. Cassidy.  Let me add a few of my own.  Bill Richardson has a knack for giving diverse groups what they want most without terminally alienating people who don't want that, whatever "that" happens to be.  He gave the pugs an upper tax bracket rate cut right out of the box in 2003, which pissed off a lot of liberal Democrats like me.

However, there were a few things I didn't know at the time which the Governor certainly did.  First, the tax cut didn't take effect immediately.  When oil prices went through the roof, the state had a windfall of revenue despite the loss from the income tax.  If oil and gas prices hadn't shot up the way they did, he could have put off the tax cut a while longer.  Second, by giving pug voters what they wanted most, he was able to set the stage for several important liberal initiatives that would have been more difficult to achieve otherwise.

He convinced the voters to allow more investment money (our "Permanent Fund" from oil, gas, and mineral severance taxes) to be used for education.  It was a very close vote, but he got it done.

He convinced the legislature to spend a huge amount of money for a commuter train between Belen (south of Albuquerque) and Santa Fe, which has been talked about for more than 20 years.  This train will likely be extended south to Las Cruces and North to the Colorado border, where it will possibly connect to the incipient Colorado commuter train system.  We will soon have commuter rail linking the major metropolitan areas of the state, which now don't even have bus service between them!  This is a really big deal for New Mexicans, and Big Bill set it all up by cutting Repugnant opposition off at the knees by giving them their core economic need.

Gov. Richardson even convinced the legislature and southern NM voters to approve even more money for a commercial spaceport, which will fuel economic development in that depressed part of the state for at least the next 50 years.  

Most important to me, Governor Richardson got behind the paper ballot early in 2005, recognizing that his Democratic base needed to know that they weren't being cheated at the ballot box.  I can tell you that we would not have the paper ballot in NM without he Governor's support.  Period.

Governor Richardson actually represents all of his constituents.  When he was my Congressman in ultra-liberal Santa Fe, he was reliably liberal, leading the fight against WIPP, the radioactive dump we have here.  When he couldn't delay it any longer, he made good and sure that we got the Federal highway money we needed so that radioactive waste wouldn't be shipped through the center of town.  What's more, he told people exactly what he had to do, even though they didn't want to hear it.

Now that he's the Governor of the whole state, including the heavily conservative southern part of the state, he has more varied interests to serve.  Yet I'm certain that he's still just as liberal as he used to be.  Sometimes I don't understand what he's trying to accomplish, but I can't argue with the results.  Bill Richardson is a political genius.

Bill Richardson was reelected in the biggest landslide in NM history because he does a great job.  He's done amazing things in NM, and if you give him a chance he'll do great things for the whole country.  We need him.

by NM Ward Chair 2007-06-01 07:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Make The Case For Your Candidate

I'm for Edwards.  There are things to like and dislike about all of the candidates, and I would be perfectly happy to have Edwards, Obama, Clinton or Richardson win.  Heck, throw Gore in there too.  So for me it's kind of a tossup on the issues.  But when I look at them as people, Edwards is the only one I get a strong positive feeling about.  I don't expect that to matter to anyone else, certainly I'm not looking to convince anyone by saying that, but since the question was asked, that's why I support him.  

I have learned to trust my instincts about people, mainly by regretting it when I have not, so these days my take on someone is just as important as the issues.  I wouldn't vote for someone whose policies I seriously disagreed with just because I liked him (or her), but I also wouldn't vote for someone if they were saying all the right things but my spidey sense was warning me away. Unless, of course, the rest of the choices were even worse, which does sometimes happen!

by janiner 2007-06-01 09:31PM | 0 recs

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