ACTION: Thank CT House Dems For FISA Vote

(Cross-posted from Daily Kos.)

As DavidNYC noted in his Orange-to-Blue endorsement post of Jim Himes yesterday, Chris Shays has a history of pretending to be a "moderate" while voting again and again for Bush's policies.

This morning, Shays joined many in both parties in Congress by standing with Bush again on the FISA "compromise".

In fact, Chris Shays has been busy doing his best impersonation of a Blue Dog all week, voting for the war supplemental without timelines that passed yesterday before voting for the for the disastrous FISA bill that passed today.

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The "Worst Behavior" in Congress in 20 Years? Really?

(Cross-posted at Daily Kos.)

Chris Shays (CT-04) has been in office for two long (too long) decades.

Over that time, he's had the opportunity to question countless witnesses in Congressional hearings - questionable, criminal, devious, and laughable characters ranging from Brownie to Rummy to Wolfie.

The other day, he gave an interview to a major national website. And guess who he told them had exhibited the "worst behavior" he's seen in Congress over all those years?

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CT-04: Help turn New England blue before 2Q deadline

(Cross-posted diary from Swing State Project.)

As DavidNYC suggested yesterday over at SSP, with each passing quarter, the presidential candidates will take away more and more air from other races. Now is the time to throw some support the way of deserving candidates before the 2Q ends this weekend.

In that spirit, here's an update on Jim Himes' campaign in CT-04 - Chris Shays' district, the last spot of red in the House in all of New England:

There are just under 500 days remaining until Election Day 2008. And I intend to spend every one of those days running a different type of campaign, one that focuses on person-to-person contact and real grassroots participation.

Now is the time to build the foundation of this campaign. And I'm looking to you to help build it. Become a Founding Member of our campaign today, and help us reach our goal of signing up 500 new Founding Members before June 30th.

What will you get for being a "Founding Member" of the campaign? You won't get any special access or treatment. You'll get something much more meaningful: the opportunity and responsibility of being one of the first people to join our effort to change the direction of our country and address the real priorities of our district.

Himes' non-political background is diverse (grew up in Latin America, public schools, Rhodes Scholar, Goldman Sachs VP, now works at an affordable housing nonprofit), he's already impressive as a candidate at this early stage, and he's looking to run a different type of campaign in a district that is usually dominated by big media buys.

Shays' time is finally up in 2008, if the netroots and grassroots starts building the foundation for this campaign now. Contribute or sign up to volunteer and help Jim reach the goal of 500 "founding members" of the campaign before this month is over.

Or sign up for email updates here.

Disclosure: I am currently doing some early volunteer work online for Jim Himes.

Ned Lamont Liveblog at My Left Nutmeg

Update: Thanks to everyone who stopped by... it was a great conversation. Here's the full post.

Please feel free to join us!

Last week, the Stamford Advocate editorial page praised Ned Lamont for his continued engagement and political activism since the election.  Ned has stayed incredibly busy with a teaching gig at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, numerous appearances in support of Democratic candidates and local DTC's, speaking engagements around the country, and efforts to support more progressive legislation at the state level and progressive challengers to Republicans in the Senate.

Hope you can grab a sandwich to eat at your desk and enjoy a great lunchtime conversation with our favorite courageous Connecticut Democrat here at MLN at 12:30 PM on Friday, June 1.  We can discuss Ned's thoughts on the recent Iraq-related votes in Congress, recent Congressional trips to Iraq, and other timely topics of interest....

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Right Wing Attempts Quadruple "Purge" Over Iraq

Back in April, in the face of massive public support for a clear timeline to end the war in Iraq, only two Republicans in the House and two in the Senate dared to buck the White House's pressure tactics and vote for the Iraq Accountability Act. The four were Sen. Gordon Smith (R-OR), Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE), Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC), and Rep. Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD).

Coincidentally, all four are now facing potential primary challenges from the right.

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RedState Gets Joe

While Reid and Pelosi are thankfully ignoring Lieberman, and Dick Durbin is sighing at his antics, RedState (taking their cues from Fred Hiatt) seems to understand the real political utility of this "courageous" Senator better than most:

But most importantly, Lieberman appears to be one of the few Congressional Democrats willing to take the long view regarding the issue of Iraq and the war on terror in general. I hope that his attitude catches on among others in the Democratic caucus but even if it does not, Lieberman renders the invaluable service of splitting the Democrats on the issue of the war.

Except, of course, he's not splitting the Democrats, he's leading the united Connecticut for Lieberman Party...

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CT-SEN: The Tide Is Turning Locally

It's now crystal clear that Joe Lieberman - as of today, officially (Lieberman-CT) - will be getting close to zero support from any national or local Democratic figure or organization of any stature whatsoever. Read this post for a list of those who came out in strong support of the Democratic party in just the first few hours of the officially endorsed candidacy of Ned Lamont (D-CT), or read this partial list of endorsements that is sure to grow exponentially over the next few hours and days.

While the national backlash (such as Rahm Emanuel's "love child" comment) seems tied in large part to party leaders wanting a unified message going into the fall, on the local level a different dynamic is at play.

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CT-SEN: Lieberman Nostalgic for The Old Days

When candidates in Connecticut didn't have to deal with inconvenient things like elections:

In an interview, Lieberman sounded a note of nostalgia for the old days. "John Bailey genuinely believed that primaries were not only divisive but often didn't pass the ultimate test of finding the candidate who could win," he said. If Bailey were alive, his attitude would be, "We have an incumbent senator who is quite popular in the state; we have an opportunity to elect three Democratic congressional challengers; we have a very tough race for governor. Why would we want to challenge an incumbent senator who could lead the other candidates to victory?"

It's amazing how much this man whines about having to make his case to the voters of Connecticut. You'd think he was the first incumbent ever to face a primary challenge.

The Broder article contains some other great bits, such as Lieberman talking about facing a primary challenge "from the left":

"I didn't know who the challenger would be, but I felt there was a very good possibility this would happen," he said. "I told people at my fundraisers last year there could well be a challenge from the left of the party...

This, of course, on the same day he released a painfully bad commercial calling Ned Lamont a Republican.

And while he may stay in the party until the day of the debate on July 6th, it certainly sounds like this is a man planning on bolting soon thereafter if things don't turn around for him:

He says he knows of no effort to gather signatures now. But he also says, "I want to put my whole record before the whole voting population of Connecticut" -- clearly implying an independent run if he loses to Lamont in August.

Poor Joe. He's lost every real campaign he's had to run since 1988... first 2000, then 2004. Now he's going to cut and run from a race in 2006 where he had all of the advantages in the world.

He's just not up to the fight anymore.

No wonder the old days are starting to look so good to him.

(Cross-posted from LamontBlog.)

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CT-SEN: Pissing Off All The Right People

bumped - Matt

First the right-wing blogosphere, then the Wall St. Journal editorial board, and now the uber-D.C. insider Stuart Rothenberg are all hysterical about the fact that Connecticut Democrats just don't seem to like their best friend Joe Lieberman that much anymore:

It doesn't seem to matter to those angry Democrats, or to Lamont, that Lieberman is widely respected for his thoughtfulness, integrity, civility and intellect. Or his overall voting record....

It isn't just that Lieberman is a centrist, however, that makes the primary challenge to him unseemly. Not all centrists deserve to be re-elected any more than all liberals or all conservatives do. Rather, it's the Connecticut Democrat's stature and character that, in another day, would make a primary challenge to him by a former Greenwich selectman laughable....

Krugman already ably debunked the "Joe as centrist" myth earlier today.

But when 33.4% of party insiders in a roll call vote are willing to put their names forward against a sitting senator, it's pretty tough to claim he is "widely respected" anymore.

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CT-Sen: Lieberman Puts His Toe in the Blogosphere

(Cross-posted from LamontBlog.)

Lieberman recently "sat down" with Connecticut Local Politics to answer six questions. Actually, it was via email and it apparently took the responsive Senator over six weeks to answer all six. Still, I guess that's what passes for meaningful interaction with constituents for Joe.

Though, with over a week to answer each individual question, you'd think he'd have come up with better answers than these:

The good people of Connecticut have elected me to represent them three times and I hope I have earned their support a fourth time.

The good Democrats of Connecticut have not had a chance to elect you in a primary since 1970. Remember Democrats? The party to which you claim to belong? You have never been elected to represent Connecticut Democrats in the Senate. You defeated a more liberal candidate to win the seat in 1988. Next?

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