ID-1: Walt Minnick is Toast.

Walt Minnick, the conservative Blue Dog Congressman from Idaho's 1st district, is in deep doo-doo with voters back home.

 Even conservative Republicans (who, let's be honest, make up this district's entire electorate) who applaud Minnick for standing up to vote no on Nancy Pelosi's agenda, will NOT vote for him next year.

An average voter here is Don Griesel.  “As we all know, Congress is controlled by the numbers game,” Griesel said. “That's who gets to be speaker of the House and Senate majority leader. So, if he doesn't change his party, there is no way I can vote Democrat, because right now, they control the House, and that is what is killing America.” 

The good news is that Walt Minnick might as well be a Republican anyway.  He votes so often with the Republican leadership that if he changed parties today it would not change the voting at all.

If I was Minnick, I'd stop campaigning, stop fundraising, and compile a strong progressive voting record.  It would be only so fair as the citizens of Idaho will probably not get another progressive vote in Congress for another fifty years.

 So I can say this right now: based on these projections, Walt Minnick will NOT return to the House in 2011.  So the DCCC better give that money to more worthy members.

CA-10: We ALL Need to Get Behind Anthony Woods, Now.

Anthony Woods, as many of you know, is running in the CA-10 special election.  He is a Progressive Dream Candidate and MUST win this primary.  Why?

  • Anthony Woods is a brave, noble and courageous young man.  He served in George Bush's Iraq war and earned the Bronze Star for leading platoons in dangerous battles, and helping Iraqis build their nation.
  • He was raised by a single mother who was a housekeeper.  He is not the son of priviledge, as are so many of the people in Congress, he comes from very humble roots.
  • He had not had health insurance for most of his life.  Woods would lend a personal voice to the health care debate.
  • He earned a Congressional appointment to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and graduated from there on the Dean's List.
  • Working hard to afford his education, he was able to go to Harvard University where he was awarded a master's from the Kennedy School of Government.
  • He was given the Robert Kennedy Public Service Award.
  • He organized aid for New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.
  • While on leave from his military service, he travelled the country raising money for Habitat for Humanity.
  • Because of the despicable and disastrous Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy, Woods was forced to leave the military or be thrown out, despite all of his hard work and sacrifice for our country.
  • Woods is running against the same old establishment Sacramento politicians, all of them conventional Democrats, and none of them particularly exciting.  Woods IS.
  • If elected to Congress, Anthony Woods would make history by becoming the first black gay congressman and the first gay soldier to be elected to Congress.  He would become a face for so many issues – health care, low-income families, our soldiers overseas, the GLBT community, and minorities.
  • Anthony Woods' candidacy personifies what it means to be a Obama Democrat, and he will no doubt become a strong supporter of our President.
  • Anthony Woods will have one of the most progressive voting records in the House.
  • If elected, Anthony Woods will become one of the youngest members of Congress, and the first Democrat elected to have been born in the 1980s.  He is a needed young voice since most of the youngest members of Congress are right-wing Republicans.  It's time that we had a young voice that actually represented the views of our young people.

Anthony Woods needs your help.  Let's all contribute to his groundbreaking campaign so that he may win the Democratic primary, scheduled for September 1, 2009.

Woods is 3rd on the list of highest contributions at ActBlue, the progressive online clearinghouse.  With all of our help, we can win.

I unfortunately cannot campaign for him, but if I lived in CA-10, I would be right out on the streets going door-to-door.  He is truly a candidate progressives can really get fully behind and support.

If you live in CA-10, please – we only have a month left – it's a matter of weeks really.  CA-10 includes the East Bay cities of Fairfield, Antioch, Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, and Livermore.

So please think about it, just imagine what his victory would mean, especially since what happened last year in California.  Woods would be a way for us to say NO to Prop 8 all over again.  He is symbolically everything a progressive party should be, and that is why we must so energetically support him.

He really needs our help.  This is a candidate to get passionate about!

CT-Sen: Chris Dodd Has Prostate Cancer

Christopher Dodd, running for re-election and losing in a race against Rob Simmons, has been diagnosed with cancer.

Of course we will pray for his recovery and wish him to get well as soon as possible. 

But, How does this change the state of the race?

Dodd still intends to run for re-election in November 2010. “As you have probably noticed, I'm working some long and hard hours lately,'' he said. “And that will continue.”

The latest Quinnipiac poll shows Rob Simmons beating Chris Dodd by a nasty 48-39 percent.  A majority of voters in CT disapprove of Dodd.

55 percent of voters said Dodd is not trustworthy or honest.

The way I see it the man has credibility problems and it is unfortunate that CT has to be a concern for us.  It is a reliably blue state.

I think that Chris Dodd should end his political career here, tell the voters that he is grateful for their support, but that he will leave the Senate in 2010.  It's better for him than being demolished in the election.

I think that we need a new Democrat and I would recommend either Christopher Murphy, Rosa DeLauro, or Chris Shays, if we can get him to run as a Democrat.

What do you think, Progressives?!

Why Pennsylvania Matters So Much

Pennsylvania, my home state, will see a lot of big races in 2010. We are electing a new Governor – electing new members of Congress from vacant seats, have a Senate election, and progressive Democrats need to win in the State House and Senate races (We have a very un-progressive Republican state Senate, the only Republican chamber left in the Northeast). It is CRITICAL that the netroots and the grassroots and all of the progressives come together and focus on PA…it's very important.

Please read on to learn more about our 2010 races!

Pennsylvania has been a swing state for some time now so what happens here is VERY IMPORTANT nationwide.

U.S. Senate

Democrats have both Senate seats for the first time since 1968 (okay, January 1969) thanks to the Specter Switcheroo.

Pat Toomey is Rick Santorum 2.0, and he MUST NOT become our new Senator. Arlen Specter or Joe Sestak MUST win.

Our Senate race is very important and has NATIONAL IMPLICATIONS, especially since Arlen Specter is known throughout the country for his switch to the Democratic Party. If Senator Specter wins his primary, we must vigorously support his re-election, no matter what.  So that means no more of the Snarlin' Arlen comments!

The U.S. House

The House delegation has gone from 12-7 Republican to 11-8, with four Democratic pickups (The biggest Democratic sweep in ANY state in 2006- no other state had more than 3 pickups).  In 2008, Democrat Kathy Dahlkemper won in PA-3 (the Erie district) and now we are at 12-7, a complete reversal of pre-2006.

We want to make sure Democrats continue to stay on a roll.


My Congressional district of PA-15 is going to be one of the most important races in the country (to me, THE most important House race and a bellwether for the entire nation). Charlie Dent, Republican, has had a VERY easy time winning here despite a prO-bama majority. Mayor John Callahan of Bethlehem is running for the Democratic nomination.  We must make him Congressman. Plus, if you ask me, he's kinda cute (-:

 Mayor Callahan's Campaign Site (Very new)


Jim Gerlach is running in the Republican primary for Governor and we have (so far) Doug Pike, who I don't know much about but will support if he is the Democrat.  I think this is VERY winnable.  If Gerlach loses, I'm not so sure he can get back into the race.  Curt Schroder is already running.  A Pike victory will mean A LOT on Election Day since it is expected the Republicans will narrowly hold onto this seat in the Philly suburbs.  It's an Obama district though.

Governor's Race

We also have to watch the Governor's race- most likely it will be between Jack Wagner and Tom Corbett.  Ed Rendell will not have very good approval ratings which will bode poorly for the Democrat but hopefully Jack Wagner (or Dan Onorato from Pittsburgh) will run a top-notch campaign and really narrow that gap in the last few weeks.  My mind says Corbett though.  Please let me wrong.

State Senate

We have a ridiculous 30-20 Republican majority in the State Senate and it keeps getting bigger by the day, so to turn it blue we'll need SIX MAGIC SEATS to take it back (I'm assuming Democrats had control of it at one point).

We will have 25 chances to win the Senate (half of it is up for election in 2010) and most of these will remain the same, however…judging from previous election results, I see these six Republican seats as the most vulnerable (Keeping in mind that they were all last up in 2006, a Democratic year):

SD 6 – held by Robert Tomlinson (R), last won by 53.4%

SD 10 – held by Chuck McIlhinney (R), won by a measly 51.5% against Democrat Chris Serpico

SD 12 – held by Stewart J. Greenleaf (R), won by 57.4%

SD 16 – held by Pat Browne (R), won by 54.2%

SD 24 – Bob Wonderling (R), won by 56.5%

SD 26 – Edwin Erickson (R), won by 52.2% (his challenger in '06 was Mike Farrell)

SD 34 – Jacob Corman (R), won by 56.0% (but Democrat Jon Eich only got 39.1%)

SD 44 – John Rafferty (R), won by 56.2%

SD 50 – Bob Robbins (R), won by 53.5% (challenger was Art Allen)

 The good news is that all of the Democratic seats will likely, barring any unusual events, be safe so we can focus on these nine seats, which are ripe for a takeover.

 State House

Democrats hold onto a 104-99 majority.  It's clearly not a safe majority.

All of the 201-or-some House seats are up and there are a lot of opportunities to pick off some of these Republicans, so let's go through the seats where the Republican won by less than 60%:

HD 15 – Jim Christiana, 51.5%

HD 26 – Tim Hennessy, 52.1%

HD 57 – Tim Krieger, 51.7%

HD 75 – Matt Gabler, 52.8%

HD 128 – Sam Rohrer, 52.2%

HD 142 – Frank Farry, 51.7%

HD 146 – Thomas Quigley, 53.4%

HD 187 – Gary Day, 52.3%

If we win all of these eight seats (a nice goal), and keep onto our close seats, we will have a 112-91, which will be a significant improvement.

Worst Case Scenario

If the Republicans win PA big, we will have:

U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (formerly the president of right-wing Club for Growth and you can just imagine those tax breaks for the rich)

Governor Tom Corbett replacing the fairly progressive Ed

A 30-20 Republican Senate (I sincerely doubt they'll win any Democratic seats)

A Republican State House (which will pass an anti-gay marriage amendment to the Constitution, at top of their to-do list when they retake the House)

The loss of Democrats Paul Kanjorski (he barely won last time around), Jason Altmire (represents a very conservative district), Chris Carney (representing an even more conservative district), freshman Rep. Kathy Dahlkemper, Republican victories in the 6th and 15th, which will give the Republicans a pickup of FOUR seats…which would undo the results of 2006, and perhaps if Joe Sestak runs for the Senate and abandons his House seat they will have FIVE seat pickups.

So as you can see the stakes cannot be higher here in the Keystone State.

By what margin will Bob Shamansky win?

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NJ-5: Defeat radical right wing/religious fundamentalist Scott Garrett. Elect a progressive Rabbi!

Hi everyone

I live in PA’s 11th district, which is right next door to NJ’s 5th.  Scott Garrett is the incumbent Republican and one of the most right wing Republicans in the House.  His record is to the right of Attila the Hun!

How wingnutty is his record?

Scott Garrett was the only member of the

New Jersey delegation to vote for oil and gas drilling off the shore of New Jersey.

He voted against stopping big oil from gouging prices!

He voted against child safety locks on guns.

He voted against the emergency funding for the Hurricane Katrina victims.

He also voted against reauthorizing the landmark Voting Rights Act.

He votes again and again against the middle class (an F grade from the Drum Major Institute).

He has the lowest environmental rating among any member of Congress.

Scott Garrett the darling of religious fundamentalists.

Garrett wants children to be taught religious creationism in the public schools.

How can a man like this represent New Jersey you ask?

Let’s pray that the fifth district (which includes blue-leaning Bergen County) is beginning to wake up

Garrett is so out of touch with moderate New Jersey.

This year the candidate is Dennis Shulman, a blind Rabbi with a very distinguished resume.

We need to get the word out and make this race a major upset victory!

Dennis is the underdog but he can do it with the support of progressives!