The rainstrom is effecting my cable service today. Don't know if I'll be able to post much today but we'll see what happens...
The rainstrom is effecting my cable service today. Don't know if I'll be able to post much today but we'll see what happens...
I'll let Lamontblog explain it to you.
That's what Colin McEnore is saying.
My sources tell me Joe Lieberman's camp may be wavering just a little over the matter of a fourth debate to be held next weeek on Fox 61. The intelligence that Lamont andPersonally, I'd like to see McEnroe play the role of Joe Lieberman just to see if he can stay awake through the entire performance.
Schlesinger are on board, with or without the senator, seems to have given pause.
This is getting ridiculous...just ridiculous.
Gov. Rell says she met with Aetna CEO Jack Rowe and Patricia Hastert just weeks before her administration approved fraudulent health insurance plan but insists they only talked about UConn oversight.This is the latest in a long history of questionable moves from Governor Rell that has gone unanswered.
If this were true, one would expect some staff person or public official who has something to do with UConn to be at the meeting, as they were with previous meetings Gov. Rell held with Jack Rowe concerning UConn.
But in a statement issued Thursday October 26, 2006 Gov. Rell says her July 26th, 2005 meeting with Jack Rowe (Aetna CEO) had only one other participant, Patricia Hastert. Turns out, Gov. Rell was once again not telling the truth.
The real name of the person included in that meeting was Patricia Hassett, Aetna's Chief of Staff and Vice President for Enterprise Initiatives, who has nothing to do with UConn. She is however a Rell campaign contributor, donating more than $1,100 to Rell's campaign; according to the 2004 Aetna Report to Shareholders a member of Aetna's senior management; and apparently attended a December 20th fundraiser in which more than $20,000 from Aetna’s management team was bundled for Rell's campaign.
The July 26th meeting occurred just days before the Insurance Department changed its antagonistic position towards the SRC-Aetna fraudulent health insurance plan.
"It's now apparent that Gov. Rell lied about the identity of the person she was meeting with just weeks before her administration approved a fraudulent health care plan," said Derek Slap - campaign spokesperson. "This discrepancy, between who Gov. Rell said she met with, and who she actually met with, raises serious questions. Why would she not tell the press and the public the truth? What did she, Rowe, and Hassett actually discuss, and did any member of her staff subsequently call or contact Insurance Commissioner Susan Cogswell or anyone else at the Insurance Department about Aetna's application? It's time for Gov. Rell to once and for all come clean."
Hassett's donation of $1125 was given in conjunction with 17 other members of Aetna's Senior Management Team (as named in the 2004 Aetna Annual Report and Financial Report to Shareholders) at a fundraiser in December 2005, just three months after approval of the fraudulent SRC-Aetna insurance plan.
And of course, can Gov. Rell explain the charges the DeStefano campagin filed in their FEC complaint.
After the era of John Rowland (and seeing that Rell was Rowland's second in command) the voters of Connecticut deserve answers.
Following the report that Chris Shay's failed to disclosure who paid for his trip to Qatar in 2003 until questioned about it by The New Republic this month, Diane Farrell's campaign came out swinging.
"Chris Shays - a self-described champion of full disclosure rules - appears to have been less than forthcoming about the funding for his trip to Qatar which preceded his first trip to Iraq in 2003 according to an article in The New Republic. The story says that funding for that trip can be traced to the government of Qatar, something that is forbidden by the U.S. Constitution.Well, today Shays fesses up to the screw-up.
"This certainly appears to be a violation of House ethics rules and may put Congressman Shays in violation of our Constitution as well. Congressman Shays' actions appear make a mockery of his rhetoric. I call on Congressman Shays to explain his actions. I call on Congressman Shays to explain why he never included on his federal financial disclosure form, as required by House ethics rules, that the trip was funded by The Islamic Free Market Institute. According to the story, this is 'a nonprofit group founded by GOP ally Grover Norquist and run by a protege of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff.'
"Congressman Shays owes this explanation to all his constituents in the 4th Congressional District. We should hold our elected representatives to the highest ethical standards. Congressman Shays has not met them."
U.S. Rep. Chris Shays, a national champion of campaign finance reform, admitted he failed to fully disclose who paid for a trip that enabled him to become the first congressman to travel to Iraq after its invasion by U.S. troops.So Mr. high and "campaign finance reform" mighty Chris Shays is caught red-handed and had to confess to the crime. Well, isn't that special.
Shays, a Connecticut Republican in a tight race with an anti-war challenger, said he did file a detailed travel disclosure form with the clerk of the House as required.
Lieberman appeared to call for more debates as he bemoaned the negative tone of the campaign.
Lamont and Republican Alan Schlesinger, meanwhile, have accepted an invitation to a fourth debate Thursday, but Lieberman declined. His press secretary, Tammy Sun, said the campaign was sticking to the agreement to hold three debates.
Though the Lamont and Schlesinger campaigns said this week that any explicit alliance would be wrong and impractical, advisers to each candidate suggested that the two could serve their separate purposes by agreeing to more appearances at debates and town hall gatherings, with or without Mr. Lieberman.In an effort to give the impression that impression that Lamont and Schlesinger have an alliance, NYT reporter Nicholas Confessore just happened to leave out the fact that Lieberman DECLINED to deabte for a forth time.
Next week, for instance, they will meet for a debate on a Fox-affiliated channel, without the senator.
"We recognize that Schlesinger is the candidate of the other major party in the state of Connecticut," said Tom Swan, Mr. Lamont's campaign manager. "For town halls, we would invite other candidates, we would invite Schlesinger, and our appearance wouldn't be dependent on Joe's."
The candidates for Lt. Governor duked it out today at their only debate earlier this morning.
(bumped to top...this is too important)
I've been involved in an online discussion over at Connecticut Local Politics regarding the new wireless internet program Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez introduced today.
There's simple no level to Chris Shays' dishonesty...and once again, People-Powered Media (PPM) has to come in and do the local media's job.
Shays was all over a recent Farrell commercial calling it "dishonest". He whined to the local newspapers. It was front and center on his website for days. But the distinctive air of hypocrisy lingers amidst his protestations.Chris Shays: dishonest to the core.
As if the slime being spewed daily to 4th District voters by the RNCC wasn't enough, delve into Shays own latest mailer. Four Westport "registered democrats" tell all. Well not all. As Paul Harvey says, "And now, the rest of the story..."
"Registered dem" #1 - Mark Argosh. Registered in 2003. Between 2003 and 2006 he and his wife gave $22,900 to the Republican National Committee, National Republican Congressional Committee, and Chris Shays. No democratic contributions. And Mark is employed by Ameriquest, whose owner Roland Arnall was appointed to an Ambassadorship by Bush after reputedly raising $12.25 million for him since 2002. Actions speak louder than registrations.
"Registered dem" #2 Toni Rubin. Told me personally in 2004 that while she liked Diane Farrell she was supporting Shays. Also told me she registered as a democrat "last year" because the Westport republicans hadn't ran her husband as a candidate. Now she's a Westport "registered democrat" supporting Shays. Guilt trip on her sour grapes or politic maneuvering - you make the call.
"Registered dem" #3 Nancy Zorfas. Nancy's son Ethan was a sporadic volunteer in the Farrell '04 campaign. Less than two weeks before the '04 election he was paid by the Republican Party as a Voter Contact Consultant. He heads the Massachusetts Alliance of College Republicans at Clark University, which lists in its purpose: "To aid in the election of Republican candidates at all levels of government." In a letter to the editor today he admits that he voted for Shays in '04 and plans on doing so in '06. He works for the Shays campaign - his letter says as a volunteer - but he told the child of a friend of mine that he was only working for Shays because he could get paid. Indecisive? Political mercenary? Or something even more sinister? You judge.
"Registered dem" #4 Ben Joseloff. Let me quote the local paper, the Westport News, about Ben: "The Shays mailer neglects to mention that the younger Joseloff worked for Shays at one time. As of press time, Joseloff did not return calls seeking comment." I wonder why that could be?
Why am I not surprised.
Vice President Dick Cheney has confirmed that U.S. interrogators subjected captured senior al-Qaida suspects to a controversial interrogation technique called "water-boarding," which creates a sensation of drowning.King George loves torture.
Cheney indicated that the Bush administration doesn't regard water-boarding as torture and allows the CIA to use it. "It's a no-brainer for me," Cheney said at one point in an interview.
Cheney's comments, in a White House interview on Tuesday with a conservative radio talk show host, appeared to reflect the Bush administration's view that the president has the constitutional power to do whatever he deems necessary to fight terrorism.
The U.S. Army, senior Republican lawmakers, human rights experts and many experts on the laws of war, however, consider water-boarding cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment that's banned by U.S. law and by international treaties that prohibit torture. Some intelligence professionals argue that it often provides false or misleading information because many subjects will tell their interrogators what they think they want to hear to make the water-boarding stop.
Republican Sens. John Warner of Virginia, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina have said that a law Bush signed last month prohibits water-boarding. The three are the sponsors of the Military Commissions Act, which authorized the administration to continue its interrogations of enemy combatants.
The radio interview Tuesday was the first time that a senior Bush administration official has confirmed that U.S. interrogators used water-boarding against important al-Qaida suspects, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged chief architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Mohammad was captured in Pakistan on March 1, 2003, and turned over to the CIA.
In the interview on Tuesday, Scott Hennen of WDAY Radio in Fargo, N.D., told Cheney that listeners had asked him to "let the vice president know that if it takes dunking a terrorist in water, we're all for it, if it saves American lives."
"Again, this debate seems a little silly given the threat we face, would you agree?" Hennen said.
"I do agree," Cheney replied, according to a transcript of the interview released Wednesday. "And I think the terrorist threat, for example, with respect to our ability to interrogate high-value detainees like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, that's been a very important tool that we've had to be able to secure the nation."
Hmm...it's been three days since the Lieberman camp said they would allow reporters to check out their records and fully explain how the 387,000 in cold hard cash was spent.
Whoops! Seems like Chris Shays has a little disclosure problem.
In April 2003, shortly after the U.S. military took Baghdad, Connecticut Representative Christopher Shays disregarded Pentagon warnings and joined an aid convoy, organized by the Connecticut-based charity Save the Children, as it drove from Kuwait into Iraq. From the Iraqi border city of Umm Qasr, Shays was able to stake a claim to being the first American congressman to cross the border after the U.S. invasion. His brief day-trip won him a fawning interview on CNN upon his return and remains an important part of his biography. In an election season where polls show a Democratic wave building by the day, Shays is currently in a fight for his political life against Democrat and Westport Selectwoman Diane Farrell. As one of the most vulnerable House Republicans, the unapologetically hawkish Shays often returns to his 14 trips to Iraq. "It was the weirdest thing," he told The Hartford Courant's NE Magazine of his initial visit in June. "I felt like I was trying to break out of jail getting into Iraq."Oh, but it gets better...
But, while Shays may want his constituents to know about his first--and most daring--trip to Iraq, he apparently doesn't want them to know how he got there. Shays's moment of triumph in Iraq came about because he happened to already be in the Middle East--attending the third Qatar-American Conference on Free Markets and Democracy in the tiny oil-rich nation of Qatar. Shays's visit was paid for by The Islamic Free Market Institute, a nonprofit group founded by GOP ally Grover Norquist and run by a protégé of disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff to help bring Muslims into the Republican fold. Days before he snuck across the border to cheer on Operation Iraqi Freedom, Shays was at the Doha Ritz Carlton, comparing Connecticut, a centuries-old, economically diverse democracy, to Qatar, a monarchy ruled by a single family since its independence in 1971. "This nation, like my small state, has always played a large role in advancing participatory democracy, civil discourse, and stable commerce," Shays told a well-heeled audience of Qatari politicians and businessmen over lunch.
Shays has been a strong advocate for public-disclosure rules over the years. "As public servants, we have a responsibility to uphold the ethics process, not weaken it," he told The Houston Chronicle in 2005, objecting to an effort to defang House ethics rules in the wake of revelations about Tom DeLay's overseas travels and ties to Abramoff. Those travel rules require members of Congress to file forms revealing all travel expenses paid by outside sources. But, despite his record of pushing for meticulous record-keeping, Shays's privately sponsored trip to Qatar was notably absent from his own annual federal financial disclosure form, filed in May 2004, in violation of House rules. Nor did he submit an amendment disclosing the sponsor of his Qatar trip until confronted in mid-October 2006 by The New Republic with internal Islamic Institute receipts for his plane tickets, which were provided by an Arab American source upset with Shays's foreign policy positions. Given his reputation and perennially contested district, it was a particularly foolhardy move.
And, despite the fact that Shays boasted to The Stamford Advocate in 2003, "Every expense of my office is a matter of public record," Shays never listed the Qatar trip on his personal financial disclosure form. A first inquiry from this reporter in early October 2006 prompted his chief of staff, Betsy Hawkings, to find "a subcommittee trip that needed to be disclosed." (Subcommittee trips are generally paid for by the federal government.) A quick letter of amendment for this trip, which had been partially funded by a Norwegian source, was drafted on October 13, 2006. Asked specifically about the Qatar conference, Hawkings said: "I was told that was a subcommittee trip." Pressed again, this time with the Islamic Institute's receipts, Hawkings admitted the truth: Shays had flown to Qatar and back to the United States on the Islamic Institute's dime, and his meals and hotel in Qatar had been paid for by the Islamic Institute. Shays returned the unused portion of his tickets and those booked for his wife. "It was authorized as official travel," said Hawkings. "Just so there's no question, I'm going to file another amendment."Oh, the rabbit hole goes deeper...
The danger of nondisclosure is that the true source of funding for foreign travel becomes untraceable. In Shays's case, knowing who sponsors his travel is especially pertinent; Shays chairs a congressional subcommittee overseeing U.S. national security matters. Just as Abramoff's nonprofit front groups routinely acted as thinly veiled conduits for money from his lobbying clients, the Islamic Institute's outlays for the representative's travels were rapidly reimbursed by the trip's real sponsor: Qatar. (In fact, Khaled Saffuri, the chairman of the Islamic Institute, had close ties to Abramoff and some of his foreign clients and had set up a short-lived lobbying firm, the Lexington Group, with him in 2002.) A letter from Saffuri to His Excellency Badar Al Dafa, then the Qatari ambassador to the United States, and a reply from the foreign ministry of Qatar shows that the Islamic Institute sought and received $143,150.93 from the foreign ministry days before Shays boarded the plane to Doha--and that the money was requested by Saffuri as reimbursement for, among other things, the congressman's travel.I wonder when the local media will get around to asking Chris Shays about his luxury trip or is this subject over their head?
...I think there is always an attempt when you have got an African-American candidate to try to attribute something to the race card.Yeah, got'cha...I guess the race card wasn't played in this ad.
Straight from the
In an interview Tuesday on National Public Radio, Bush's political guru, Karl Rove, implied a vote for Lieberman is a vote for winning in Iraq.
Rove said Lieberman's support grew in the days leading up to the August primary, which he attributed to voters considering the "consequences to America of winning or losing" in Iraq.
The desperation alert is sounding off at Nancy Johnson headquarters. After admitting to lying in several of their idiotic ads, the Johnson campaign comes out with an ad that sinks to a new low.
The television spot, which began its run on Hartford television stations Monday night, spoofs an earlier ad by Johnson's opponent, Democratic state Sen. Chris Murphy, which featured him making the door-to-door neighborhood tours.If this isn't bad enough, following the smear tactics of the RNC's TV ad against Harold Ford Jr, Johnson's people carefully plays the "soft on drug crimes" card.
"I'm Chris Murphy," the Johnson ad begins, featuring five seconds of footage from Murphy's ad. "And I'm running for Congress by knocking on doors."
But then the ad quickly shifts to a rear shot of Murphy, now played by an actor impersonating the state senator walking door-to-door. The next frames show a woman telling Murphy to "keep walking!" because he "raised our taxes 27 times," and then another woman slapping Murphy because he provided "housing for sex offenders." The ad closes when Murphy reaches another house, where he is warmly embraced by a garishly dressed drug dealer.
"Murphy!" the actor playing the drug dealer says. "You want to weaken penalties for drug dealers, man! That's so cool. Come on in."Now, this comes from a Congresswoman who claims that Chris Murphy is running a negative campaign.
The charge that Murphy supported "27 tax increases" started airing in TV and radio spots earlier this fall. However, 14 of the Murphy votes were for routine compromise budget bills each year.
These budget acts were supported and signed by Republican governors John Rowland and M. Jodi Rell. The Johnson campaign, therefore, is criticizing Murphy for votes that were actually supported by her fellow Republicans.
Seven of the "27 tax increases" came in bills passed during 2005 and 2006, when Rell was governor.
"If I raised taxes, then Jodi Rell raised taxes," Murphy said during an interview two weeks ago. "In fact, over the course of my eight years in the legislature, state taxes have actually decreased by $300 million."
Johnson campaign manager David Boomer said during an interview Wednesday that he is heavily involved in both researching and writing the congresswoman's ads. He acknowledged many questions about the tax claims.
When asked if more than a dozen of the increases mentioned in his ads were actually bipartisan budget bills, Boomer said:
"Correct. A number of these [bills referred to in the ads] were the budget and tax packages worked out in compromise between the governor and the legislature. ... Yes, Jodi Rell signed all of these bills. ... We're simply saying that Murphy is a tax raiser. He raised taxes in Hartford, and he'll raise them in Washington."
The Murphy campaign has also questioned the accuracy of the ad's claims that he provided "housing for sex offenders" and "weaken[ed] penalties for drug dealers."Yeah, I'm sure the Johnson camp doesn't want to get into it...so lets turn back the ConnecticutBLOG clock and dig into it ourselves.
The first reference is to a 1999 bill, "An Act Concerning Landlord and Tenant" that Murphy says he voted against because he thought it weakened eviction protection for low-income families. (The same bill contained provisions that allowed housing authorities to exclude sex offenders.)
In 2005, the Connecticut legislature wrestled with the issue of the disparity between penalties for possession of powder cocaine and crack cocaine.
In an initial vote, Murphy did support exempting drug dealers from a mandatory minimum sentence, if they were caught with less than 1 ounce of crack cocaine.
But Rell vetoed that bill, and less than a week later Murphy voted with a unanimous legislature to increase the penalties for possession of powder cocaine.
When asked about his ad's reference to the first bill, which was unfavorable to Murphy, but not the second, Boomer said:
"Well, I'm not going to get into that. Our ad only referred to the first vote, where Murphy voted to lessen penalties."
Bill Leukhardt of the Hartford Courant writes about the effort being made by the state senate and house to quickly pass the Republican compromise to the failed cocaine-crack prosession bill before the session ends.You see, what Johnson's camp doesn't tell you is that prior to 2005, the laws were fixed so that a person who had a half an ounce of crack would get the same jail time as a person who had 28 grams of cocaine.The sponsors will seek quick House and Senate passage of a proposal setting 14 grams - half an ounce - as the trigger amount of either crack or powder cocaine a suspect must possess to be charged as a dealer.
The law now says anyone possessing half a gram of crack cocaine can be charged as a dealer, with a mandatory minimum jail term of five years if convicted. For powder cocaine, the threshold is 28 grams.
The bill Rell vetoed would have set 28 grams of either as the threshold. Rell said a 28-gram threshold for crack was too lenient for a highly addictive drug often sold in cities by violent gangs that battle rivals for turf.
She said she would sign a compromise setting 14 grams as the threshold for the dealing charge for both crack and powder - a compromise position House and Senate Republicans proposed last month without success.
Boomer concedes that as both Chris Murphy and Rinker Buck have noted, the majority of the tax increases (14 of 27) were part of budget bills, nullifying any culpability on Murphy for raising taxes. He admits that the Johnson claim is pure bunk. And then gets back on smear message "We're simply saying that Murphy is a tax raiser." Damn the facts, WE'RE SAYING SOMETHING!
Boomer and Johnson's brand of lying is of that special type that knows fully well what the truth is and isn't concerned by the disconnect. There are books that have been written about this. Johnson's ad reeks of fear and desperation and Boomer's loyalty to the fabrication that has become a planck of the Johnson campaign is truly startling. Caught in a lie and accepting it, Boomer continues to lie.
If Nancy Johnson wins reelection it will be on the back of her and her campaign managers dutiful willingness to lie, smear, and generally shit on the truth in their effort to scare voters away from Chris Murphy. Maybe they're comfortable with that, but I sure am not.
Stop F-ing whining and fight back (4.00 / 1)Good idea! Count me in with that project.
Do an ad Showing Nancy Johnson showing up at her Drug Dealers house( a CEO of Big Pharma) and going around to the back door and getting a bag of money.
I guess Joe Lieberman is running away from his "stay the course" strategy...I guess he received Karl Rove's memo.
Look how the Republicans run...
President Bush and his aides are annoyed that people keep misinterpreting his Iraq policy as "stay the course." A complete distortion, they say. "That is not a stay-the-course policy," White House press secretary Tony Snow declared yesterday.A complete distortion? Lets run the video clip.
The Journal Inquirer connects the dots and exposes the money trail between Joe Lieberman and President Bush.
The Connecticut Issues Project, a tax-exempt group behind campaign literature lauding U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, has received nearly all of its funding from five people who don't live in Connecticut, including two who each contributed $20,000 to the Republican National Committee, government records show.Joe Lieberman (R-CT).
The stated purpose of the Washington, D.C.-based group, established in April as what the IRS calls a "527" political organization, is "to educate the public in Connecticut about the records and positions of elected officials and public policy issues."
The group is perhaps best known for a flier mailed under its name to state voters last month that on one side asked, "When George Bush wanted to close the New London Sub Base, who was there to stop him?"
The answer, printed on the other side, was "Connecticut's Joe Lieberman," whom the flier praised not only for "saving" the sub base but also for "fighting for the needy."
The Connecticut Issues Project by the end of September spent a total of $236,964, primarily on consulting services and opinion research, according to its latest report to the IRS.
The document reveals that more than 95 percent of that money - $225,000 - came from a handful of big donors who all contributed to the group immediately before the Democratic primary in August:
* Stephen Lazovitz, a nursing home developer from New Jersey who contributed $75,000.
* John Doerr, a venture capitalist from California who gave $50,000.
* Alan and Miriam Goldberg, a New York financier and his wife who also gave $50,000.
* Patrick Rohan, a corporate executive in New York, another $50,000 donor.
Lazovitz, identified in IRS and Federal Election Commission records as the owner of Lavovitz Builders, a developer with Seniors Management, or the chief executive officer of Seniors Health Care Inc., made $36,750 in campaign contributions to various candidates since 2001.
Recipients included Republican leaders George Bush and Dick Cheney, Sens. Rick Santorum and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, and Katherine Harris, the former secretary of state in Florida.
Alan Goldberg, a partner in the new York firm of Goldman, Lindsay and Co. and the former chairman and chief executive officer of Morgan Stanley Private Equity, and Miriam Goldberg, identified in IRS and Federal Election Commissions records as a "housewife," each made $20,000 to the Republican National Committee in 2001.
Mr. Goldberg also has a long record of contributions to Republican committees and candidates, including Bush and the Bush-Cheney Compliance Committee, as well as Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah and former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay of Texas.
Okay boys and girls, it's crunch time!
Very funny video from Liebermanforme.com
Why won't the Lieberman campaign allow reporters to inspect his records and check how the 387,000 is "petty cash" was used?
The Lieberman campaign is steadfastly refusing to allow reporters to inspect documents related to a $387,000 disbursement of petty cash before the primary election. By law, the campaign is required to keep a petty cash journal.Joe Lieberman dished out 387,000 is cold hard cash 12 days before the primary. This was the same time the Liebergoons came out in force and disrupted various Lamont events.
According to the Federal Elections Commission, a campaign can make payments of under $100 through “petty cash” as the campaign said it did with “volunteers” in the field during the days leading up to the primary, paying them between $50 and $100 a day.
First, Lieberman spokeswoman Tammy Sun said she wasn't there when it happened:What's going on here? 387,000 in COLD HARD CASH was passed around like a snack tray 12 days before the primary and Lieberman's campaign is refusing to show what happened to the money?Lieberman spokeswoman Tammy Sun said she wasn't with the campaign at the time of the primary, but her understanding is that there was a staffer in charge of keeping track of petty cash. (NH Register, 10/22)
Then she promised she'd produce the journal detailing petty cash expenditures - one that is required by FEC law:She said the money was used to cover salaries, food, lodging and transportation for hundreds who were hired to do statewide canvassing. The daily rates ranged from $60 to $75 to $100 for the work, Sun said. She said she would attempt to find the petty cash report by Monday. (NH Register, 10/22)
Then she was "unable to say" why the young workers who assumedly got all this cash weren't listed by name and salary in the FEC report, while their lodging and transportation was:Sun was unable to say Saturday why the workers, some of whom appeared to have stayed for days or weeks in dormitories at the expense of the Lieberman campaign, were not listed by name and salary. (Courant, 10/22)
Then she hid behind the campaign's lawyer:"The fact is, our attorney has assured us that the petty cash expenditures and the rest of our FEC report is in full compliance with the law's disclosure requirements just as every campaign Joe Lieberman has run for the last 18 years has been." (AP, 10/23)
Then she reversed herself, said the cash was not used to pay workers, but to pay field coordinators who then threw the cash around to kids:Lieberman's campaign spokeswoman, Tammy Sun, said today the cash was paid to field coordinators who then distributed the money to workers who canvassed for the three-term incumbent, who's running as an independent candidate after his primary loss to Lamont in August. (Journal-Inquirer, 10/24)
Then she reversed herself, and told reporters they couldn't see the petty cash journal:Sun declined Monday to allow reporters to examine the campaign's petty cash journal. (Courant, 10/24)
Now, despite promising reporters she would produce records of how almost $400,000 in cash was spent and then suddenly telling reporters they couldn't look at them, and despite still being "unable to say" why the slush fund even existed in the first place, she's calling the whole thing a "kooky conspiracy theory":"We are in full compliance with the FEC's disclosure requirements, have done nothing wrong, and there’s not a shred of evidence to suggest otherwise. We will not be going beyond the law to release the journal simply because Ned Lamont has some kooky conspiracy theory." (NH Register, 10/24)
Once again, Connecticut Bob raises the videoblogging bar and files in a great report on last night's debate.
The DeStafano campaign unveiled a new TV ad today which features Democratic Lt. Gov. candidate Mary Glassman.
Here's the flyer that pissed off Joe Lieberman so much that he freaked out on Lamont after the debate last night.
Hat tip to Joe Lieberman's nightmare.
Can the stupid local mainstream media (MSM) please stop running with Joe Lieberman talking points about the hecklers
This is a picture of the LaRouche Glee Club that I captured on my cell phone. It's the same people who kept interrupting the debate. When the debate was over they stood outside singing for the next 30 minutes or so. I tried talking to a few of them and asking what exactly they were protesting, but all they'd do was hand me their literature. They'd accomplished their goal of disrupting the debate and there was no need for them to say anything else.
Just watched the re-broadcast of the WFSB TV news. News anchor Dennis House said:
Lieberman was heckled by Lamont supporters, who disrupted the debate... Moderator George Stephanoplous tried to get the crowd to be quiet and Schlesinger came to Lieberman's rescue.
Then it cut to Schlesinger shouting at the heckler to show Lieberman some respect. I taped it on a VCR, but don't have a digital format to upload.
According to one blogger, "I just got off the phone with the news department of WFSB and they swore up and down that they did not claim the heckler was a Lamont supporter."
WFSB is wrong in their coverage and wrong in their denials. The Day and numerous other sources have reported that the hecklers were Lyndon LaRouche supporters. Here's a picture of them from the campaign blog. There is not now and never was evidence that they were Lamont supporters. WFSB has simply fabricated the story.
Lieberman's campaign today claimed that the $387,000 slush fund was used to pay salaries, food, lodging, and transportation of "young kids" doing paid canvassing.
But "Lodging for Volunteers," "Car Rental for Canvassers," "Food for Staff," a $1,700+ tab for "Food and Beverage" for Tom Lindenfeld (their field guy), multiple payments to temp and staffing agencies, multiple gas receipts for $20 and $30 each, multiple van and bus and car rentals (ground transportation alone accounts for at least $90,000 of their itemized expenses), multiple airfares, and even a $12.99 car wash are all itemized on their FEC report.
I see two problems here. First: paying for contractors out of petty cash. Petty cash is meant to pay for small expenses where it's not practical to cut a check. There's no reason not to pay field workers with a check. Surely passing out cash daily is far less practical than having people submit an invoice for a weekly or bi-weekly payment.MyDD:
Second: While the Lieberman campaign did attempt to hire up to 4,000 workers, we know they never materialized. The weekend before the primary Lieberman switched his focus from GOTV operations to media buys. And Anyone who was at the polls on primary day, or caught any stop on Joe's Tomorrow Tour knows Joe's actual number of supporters was never that large. I just don't see how the ground support that they did have adds up to $387,561.
Ok, this is getting really weird. Lieberman spoksewoman Tammy Sun is simply denying that the Lieberman campaign did anything wrong.More Stoller:"This is just another reckless charge from a desperate campaign that is obsessed with reliving the primary," said Lieberman spokeswoman Tammy Sun. "The fact is, our attorney has assured us that the petty cash expenditures and the rest of our FEC report is in full compliance with the law's disclosure requirements just as every campaign Joe Lieberman has run for the last 18 years has been."Who's the lawyer for Lieberman, because I don't believe that any competent lawyer would say anything of the sort. The law is clear.A political committee may maintain a petty cash fund out of which it may make expenditures not in excess of $100 to any person per purchase or transaction. If a petty cash fund is maintained, it shall be the duty of the treasurer of the political committee to keep and maintain a written journal of all disbursements. This written journal shall include the name and address of every person to whom any disbursement is made, as well as the date, amount, and purpose of such disbursement. In addition, if any disbursement is made for a candidate, the journal shall include the name of that candidate and the office (including State and Congressional district) sought by such candidate.This is $387,000, in cold hard cash. We're not talking going out and getting donuts for some volunteers here.
This could be a serious legal situation for Lieberman, and he needs to explain it and not just go on the attack. Vote-buying is illegal. And if this were some sort of clerical error, why couldn't Tammy Sun just admit that and have the story go away?
The practice of vote-buying is not new or surprising in American history, but sometimes the case is particularly brazen. The FEC as a regulatory agency was created to stop these illegal practices in elections, and the key to stopping these practices, or at least limiting them, is disclosure. When someone's not disclosing, they are often not engaging in honest electioneering.
And when someone's not disclosing where $387,000 in campaign cash went in the final days before a primary, well, that's sort of a big red flag.
Speaking of which, Joe Lieberman just reported on his FEC form $387,000 in petty cash disbursements for the last eight days of the primary campaign against Ned Lamont. That's 8% of the total amount he spent, and an incredibly high number. It's also illegal; petty cash disbursements are not supposed to go above $100 apiece, for the simple reason that vote-buying, money-laundering and other illegal and unsavory tactics are easily accomplished when you can just hand out cash, as the Lieberman campaign apparently did.
All in all, it's very confusing. There are much better ways to hide payoffs than reporting illegal disbursements on your publicly accessible FEC report, but then again, the Lieberman staff at the time probably knew that they were all being fired after the primary and were totally exhausted. Attention to detail tends to lapse at times like that. Or maybe there's an innocent explanation, the Lieberman just illegal paid $387,000 in cash to canvassers in the last few days and forgot to catalogue it like the law demands.
I'm only certain of one thing. The Lieberman campaign is hiding something. Whether it's embarrassment at their incompetence or criminal activity I don't know. But they didn't admit a simple mistake and come clean, and that's very strange.
Reader drowsy points out that the Hartford Courant article about Ned Lamont's latest $2 million campaign infusion also has quite a bit to say about Lieberman's finances, namely a series of huge cash expenditures right before the August 8 primary listed in the Lieberman campaign's latest finance report. The Lamont campaign has questioned $387,000 in cash disbursements made by the Lieberman campaign shortly before the primary - labeled as "petty cash" for "volunteers" and "an alarmingly large and suspicious slush fund" by the finance report and the Lamont camp, respectively.
Lieberman spokeswoman Tammy Sun says the money was used for payments to young field workers hired in the closing weeks of the primary. But a Lamont press release remarks that this explanation raises more questions than it answers, such as: "If as Tammy Sun claims, this cash was used for volunteers, food and transportation, why does their FEC report separately itemize expenses for volunteers, food and transportation throughout their FEC report? [examples attached at bottom of release]" ... "Why were 'volunteers' paid cash?" ... and, "Did the Lieberman Campaign fill out tax forms for the paid ‘volunteers?'"
Okay, now back to that Courant article: "Sun was unable to say Saturday why the workers, some of whom appeared to have stayed for days or weeks in dormitories at the expense of the Lieberman campaign, were not listed by name and salary."
Is the Roundup missing something here?
Here's the letter in full:
October 23, 2006This rabbit hole goes real deep and this story is far from over.
Office of General Counsel
Federal Election Commission
999 E Street NW
Washington, DC 20463
RE: Formal Complaint Regarding Friends of Joe Lieberman
(Committee ID: C00235515)
Dear General Counsel:
Please accept this letter as a formal complaint regarding the apparent violation of Title 11 of the Code of Federal Regulations, section 102.11, by the Friends of Joe Lieberman committee, and Joseph I. Lieberman, individually. As set forth more fully below, the Lieberman committee has failed to account for more than $387,000.00 in supposed petty cash expenditures in violation of 11 C.F.R. §102.11. On behalf of the citizens of Connecticut and all federal taxpayers, it is hereby alleged:
Title 11 C.F.R. §102.11 (2 U.S.C. 432(h)(2)) (Petty Cash Fund) provides:
A political committee may maintain a petty cash fund out of which it may make expenditures not in excess of $100 to any person per purchase or transaction. If a petty cash fund is maintained, it shall be the duty of the treasurer of the political committee to keep and maintain a written journal of all disbursements. This written journal shall include the name and address of every person to whom any disbursement is made, as well as the date, amount, and purpose of such disbursement. In addition, if any disbursement is made for a candidate, the journal shall include the name of that candidate and the office (including State and Congressional district) sought by such candidate.
The Friends of Joe Lieberman committee, and Joseph I. Lieberman, individually have violated the clear and unambiguous terms of 11 C.F.R. §102.11 in at least the following three ways.
First, according to the FEC October Quarterly report filed on October 13, 2006, the Lieberman campaign has petty cash disbursements amounting to $387,561.00, which is roughly 8 percent of its total disbursements, or one out of every twelve dollars spent. On several occasions, petty cash disbursements greater than $100 were reported, as supposed payment for "volunteers." As summary of these disbursements can reviewed at pages [ ] of the Friends of Joe Lieberman report (attached hereto). These disbursements reflect patent violations of 11 C.F.R. §102.11.
Second, the report does not include the name and address of every person to whom any disbursement is made, as well as the date, amount, and purpose of such disbursement. Again, Friends of Joe Lieberman stands in clear violation of 11 C.F.R. §102.11.
Third, and perhaps most troubling, the Associated Press reported earlier today that Lieberman spokeswoman Tammy Sun claims the cash was supposedly used pay to field coordinators who then distributed money to workers who were canvassing (Andrew Miga, Lamont Questions Lieberman's Spending, October 23, 2006). There is no evidence that the Lieberman committee kept and maintained a written journal of any kind regarding these disbursements as required by 11 C.F.R. §102.11. As I am sure you are aware, the rationale for this regulation is to, among other things, prevent the creation and utilization of slush funds for illicit purposes. The $387,561.00 involved here is a sum of supposed petty cash expenditures unprecedented in any race in our state's history. The Lieberman campaign's patent disregard for this regulation calls for the immediate investigation of this matter by your office to ensure that the voters of Connecticut can be fairly informed about the conduct of their elected officials.
I would appreciate you contacting me to confirm receipt of this complaint.
I thank you in advance for your attention to this pressing matter.
300 Research Parkway, Suite 102
Meriden, CT 06450
The next stop is just a few miles away at Ted's, a famous cheeseburger shack in town. Ned greets some supporters on the patio outside, and then we file inside to get our steamed burgers. It's small and crowded in here, and though the drill is to stay as far out of the candidate's way as possible, I get pinned right up against Ned in the crowd. Then, all of a sudden, everyone in the restaurant, in the booths and at the counter, everywhere, simultaneously pulls on a white Lieberman T-shirt. It takes a second to process what's happening. "Oh, my God," Ned says. "It's the Lieber people." They start heckling Ned aggressively, using campaign attack lines about taxes and how for sixteen years, until right before this campaign, Ned belonged to a country club in Greenwich that has almost no black members. Most of Joe's supporters in Ted's are kids, but there's one big bald guy, the only adult among them, who starts a loud, frenzied inquisition right in Ned's face. "Are you a Bill Clinton Democrat or an Al Sharpton Democrat?"Although Goodstein clearly wore a Lieberman shrt at Ted's (as well as the other goons who tried to provoke Lamont), none of the people (including Goodstein) were listed in Lieberman's FEC filing. Here's what Lieberman reported during this time period.
"They're not mutually exclusive," Ned says.
"No, I'm asking. Answer me! Clinton or Sharpton?" Ned tries to answer, but the guy interrupts: "I worked for Abe Ribicoff. He couldn’t play golf at your country club in Greenwich!" When Ned starts to turn away, the guy says, "Don't turn your back on me, Ned!
"Let's keep this civil for the last five days of the campaign," Ned says, and he starts making his way among the Lieber kids, shaking their hands again.
The big bald guy is right in my face now. I ask him where he's from, what his role is here, and he shouts and wags his finger and demands my credentials, yelling to the crowd that I'm not a legitimate reporter and I must be with Ned. Suddenly, I realize the goal here is to provoke Ned into overreacting on-camera. And if not him, then someone on his staff. And it's working; I want badly to take a swing at this lunatic, and I'm not even on the campaign. I flash back to yesterday and the Banana Man and the thug yelling at Tom Swan, "Hit me! Do it!"
7/27 - Petty Cash / Stipend Volunteers - $32,500
8/02 - Petty Cash / Stipend Volunteer Payment - $67,500
8/04 - Petty Cash / Stipend Volunteers - $135,000
Nice move from the Courant. I'll be interested to see if their feelings extends to the senate race...
In 1994, voters rightly rebelled against unresponsive, entrenched Democratic majorities in the U.S. House and Senate and put Republicans in charge. Similar discontent inhabits the land today.Throw the buims out, vote for change.
The nation is mired in an unpopular war. Congress exercises no spending restraint. Lobbyist influence is at high tide.
Little has been done to protect the long-term financial stability of Social Security and Medicare or to promote energy independence. There has been insufficient oversight of the Republican-controlled executive branch. Scandal taints Congress, with members being sent to prison, forced to resign or under indictment or investigation.
It's time for a change to Democratic control to see if they can do any better. Divided government has worked well in the past. Three Republican-held seats in Connecticut are key to whether there will be change or more of the same. Voters must ask themselves if these GOP incumbents can be part of the solution or are part of the problem. Here are The Courant's recommendations in the U.S. House races:
2nd DISTRICT: COURTNEY
During four terms in the state's General Assembly, Democrat Joe Courtney, 53, a lawyer from Vernon, distinguished himself as a hard-working, effective and respected lawmaker and leader on health care reforms. That ethic, combined with Mr. Courtney's compassion and integrity, makes him a better candidate than the three-term incumbent, Republican Rob Simmons, in a district that covers half the state.
Mr. Simmons, 63, of Stonington, deserves partial credit for working with Sens. Christopher J. Dodd and Joseph I. Lieberman and state and local officials to remove the New London submarine base from the federal list of base closures. Yet his evasiveness and his voting record are troubling.
Four years ago, Mr. Simmons, an Army veteran and 10-year CIA veteran, expressed strong misgivings about going to war in Iraq and was unconvinced the country's nuclear weapons capability posed "a clear and present danger." Ten days later, he voted to authorize the military strike. Mr. Simmons still touts his "qualified" stance on Iraq, yet in June he voted for a resolution supporting the Bush administration's policies. Afterward, his campaign issued a statement saying the resolution "fails to fully address a key question that most Americans are asking: 'When are the troops coming home?'." But Mr. Simmons also says he doesn't support a deadline.
Last month, Mr. Simmons supported legislation on the treatment of detainees in the war on terror, saying the bill adequately clarifies and protects their rights. It doesn't. Mr. Simmons also says he's against privatizing Social Security, but his varying statements call his commitment into question.
This year, Mr. Simmons voted for a consumer-unfriendly giveaway to the food industry that would have let the federal government override state regulations on food labeling. He also co-sponsored legislation giving the gun industry immunity from civil lawsuits.
Mr. Courtney's ethic of hard work, compassion and integrity -- and his leadership on health care -- make him the best choice.
4th DISTRICT: FARRELL
Democrat Diane Farrell came within 4 percentage points of defeating incumbent Chris Shays in the Fairfield County district in 2004. She's The Courant's choice this year.
Ms. Farrell, 51, is a socially progressive, fiscally moderate former two-term first selectwoman of Westport -- no small feat in a Republican-dominated town. She knows how to build bipartisan coalitions to get things done.
Schooled and steeled by two grinding campaigns for the House, this articulate, personable, bright woman is knowledgeable about federal issues and would be an effective change agent to clean up Congress.
Opposing Mr. Shays' election to an 11th term is not easy for us to do. The Courant has long admired Mr. Shays for his independent streak, his good work on behalf of the environment and his passion for such causes as campaign finance reform and government ethics.
But the 61-year-old moderate from Bridgeport has been marginalized by his own party and has become increasingly ineffective. In 2002, he won a great victory in banning soft money from campaigns, and yet there is more special-interest money than ever influencing federal elections. He has long been a budget hawk, yet the Congress controlled by his party rolls up record budget deficits without flinching. Borrow and spend is its byword.
Worse, Mr. Shays has been one of the staunchest supporters of President Bush's aimless and costly Iraqi war policy. Despite recently calling for a timetable for ratcheting down U.S. involvement and advocating the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his entire team, Mr. Shays foresees ongoing U.S. military activity in Iraq for a number of years. He has also made inexplicable statements of late, such as saying that the extreme sexual humiliation of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. guards at the Abu Ghraib prison "was not torture."
5th DISTRICT: MURPHY
Chris Murphy, 33, a Democrat from Cheshire, is the strongest challenger that Rep. Nancy Johnson has faced in her 12-term career in the House.
Mrs. Johnson, 71, a Republican from New Britain, is an authority on health care. As chairman of the Ways and Means health subcommittee, she helped author the Medicare Part D prescription drug bill, which has proved a success.
Therein lies her problem. Mrs. Johnson has long struggled with a tendency to confuse and complicate. Democrats were able to frame her prescription drug bill as a muddle of a law too complex to work because she failed to present it clearly and coherently. The Democrats won the public relations battle, though the law is in fact cutting drug costs.
Mr. Murphy has a command of health care policy that rivals Mrs. Johnson's because of his service as the Senate chairman of the state legislature's Public Health Committee. He championed a workplace smoking ban and stem cell research. A strong environmentalist, he introduced legislation requiring that cars sold in Connecticut meet tougher emissions standards. Mrs. Johnson's record on the environment is mixed: Though she opposed oil drilling in the Arctic refuge, she supported an energy bill that provided giveaways to oil companies and lacked tougher fuel efficiency standards for vehicles.
Mr. Murphy is a fluent, even inspiring speaker. He speaks eloquently, for example, of the state's struggle to deal with $40 billion in federal cuts in funding for the poor, elderly and students that Mrs. Johnson voted for in the Deficit Reduction Act. To her credit, Mrs. Johnson defied her party in supporting a ban on inhumane treatment of detainees and allowing the importation of drugs from Canada. And she voted to repeal restrictions on federal funding of stem cell research.
But she has failed to serve as a check on her party's worst instincts as it balloons the federal deficit, weakens House ethics rules, blindly backs U.S. occupation of Iraq and allows the president unprecedented executive powers. Mr. Murphy would provide just such a check.
(an unbelieveable cross-post from Hat City Blog)
Is Nancy Johnson throwing in the towel or is she trying top imitate Katherine Harris when it comes to making STUPID statements.
I hope your sitting down for this one.
[Nancy] Johnson accused Murphy of distracting voters by bringing forward national issues such as the war in Iraq.Say what?!?
Johnson added that she wished to concentrate on issues more local to Connecticut that fall within the realm of her position's control.
This is the same Nancy Johnson who not only voted for the war, but also played the role of President Bush's Iraq war cheerleader along side Chris Shays, Rob Simmons and Joe Lieberman. Now, with a staggering number of soliders dying in the middle of a civil war that has no end in sight, Johnson wants to jump ship and whine about Murphy's bringing up the war as a campaign issue.
When one takes a look at Johnson's voting record, you can understand why she doesn't want to talk about the war.
Johnson Opposed Setting Benchmarks for Success in Iraq. In 2005, Johnson, and nearly every Republican present, voted against an effort to require President Bush to submit a plan for success in Iraq, supply the military with adequate equipment and other resources to complete their mission, and provide veterans with adequate health care services. The proposal was debated during consideration of the State Department authorization bill. Had the plan passed, it would have required the president to outline benchmarks for success in Iraq - including the adoption of a constitution, free and fair elections, and a plan for economic development - that could be used to determine when Iraq is sufficiently stable to allow for the return home of American soldiers. The motion also noted that the lack of a clear strategy for success in Iraq could undermine the morale of U.S. troops. The proposal was rejected, 203-227. [Rep. Menendez Press Release, 7/20/05; HR2601 7/20/2005 Vote# 398]And this is just the tip of the iceberg folks.
The Same Vote Also Addressed Additional Job Assistance to Veterans Returning from Overseas. The vote opposed a motion to a job training reauthorization bill to provide extra assistance to veterans who are returning from conflicts overseas. Many veterans returning from the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq may need skills and training to obtain or retain their jobs while Reservists who have spent a year or more overseas have put their careers on hold to serve our country. Four out of 10 members of the Guard and Reserve forces lose income when they leave their civilian jobs for active duty. Many left for the war thinking they would be deployed for 6 months and have ended up staying for a year or even longer and may be shipped out again. Additionally, many Guard and Reservists are self-employed or run small businesses and face the daunting task of reestablishing their businesses after their release from active duties. The 2 years after they return from service are the most difficult. The motion failed, 197-228. [Statement by Reps. Kildee and DeLauro, 109th Congressional Record, pg. H915, 3/2/05; HR27 3/2/2005 Vote# 47]
Johnson Opposed $100 Million Increase for Military Personnel. In 2005, Johnson, and nearly every Republican present, voted against a proposal to the budget to increase funding for military health care by $100 million and transitional job training for military personnel by $50 million. The proposed increase failed, 200-229.[HR1268 3/16/2005 Vote# 76]
"Nancy Johnson calling this war a distraction is just as offensive as President Bush calling it a comma. I have knocked on the doors of families in this district who have children serving in Iraq , and they would be appalled to hear their Congresswoman dismissing this war as a distraction," said Murphy.This is just another in a long list of stupid comments from Johnson and I'm personally concerned for her mental well-being.
"It is simply bizarre for Nancy Johnson to say that she can't control this war because it is not 'within the realm of her position's control.' Nancy Johnson voted for the war. She voted against a $1500 pay bonus for combat troops. She voted for President Bush's stay-the-course resolution. Nancy Johnson is in the leadership of this Republican Congress, and Congress can control this war. Nancy Johnson and her colleagues simply refuse to do so," said Murphy.
Sorry for the delay in posting stuff but I'm hard at work on finishing the baby room in my house. With less than five weeks until my daughter hits the scene, I really have to get things finished around the house.