Monday, July 14, 2003

Lieberman campaign in trouble?
The Boston Globe reported this afternoon that Sen. Joe Lieberman is shuffling his campaign finance staff after not as good as expected numbers ["Lieberman shakes up campaign "]. Lieberman raised over $5 million, but he is not connecting on the stump, so the cash really doesn't matter in the scheme of things.

Gephardt finally hits on what should be the issue of the 2004: Trade and jobs!
Rep. Dick Gephardt came out swinging over the weekend, laying into his opponent's ignorance about international trade policies ["Gephardt Blasts Kerry, Dean Over Trade Policies"].
"Just understand that when I'm president I will work against and I will never sign a trade treaty of any kind that will send our jobs and our money and our welfare off to the highest bidder around this world," said Gephardt.
Kerry's flack Chris Lehane swiped back:
"We're going to turn the cheek on this one because we respect Congressman Gephardt and are sympathetic to his campaign's frustrations and growing sense of desperation," said Lehane.
Ouch. But too bad Kerry's people don't get it. The gutting of American manufacturing is the nation's biggest problem and frankly, Gephardt is right. Trade is good; economic slavery is not.

Money makes elections go 'round ...
US PIRG releases its latest report analyzing money's influence over the 2002 election cycle: ["The Role of Money in the 2002 Congressional Elections"]
"At least $2.376 billion was spent for the purpose of influencing 2002 congressional elections. This figure falls short of the record-breaking 1999-2000 election cycle, but tops the last non-presidential cycle."
Man, that is a lot of cash!

The NAACP flap
Not surprisingly, many organizations and groups - like the NAACP - want the democratic candidates for president to come to their meetings and convention to pay homage to the rank and file. But, the candidates have agreed that they would only debate in forums sponsored by the Democratic National Committee [DNC], in order to keep the bickering to a minimum and, frankly, let the party elders control the process. ["Candidates agreement to limit confrontations falls apart "]
This is unfortunate; and organizations like the NAACP should be pissy about the blow off by some dems. However, they should also be a little more considerate to the commitments the candidates have already made. Tinkering with the debate format would allow the candidates to adhere to promises they have made and allow their membership to have access to the candidates.
Of course, they can also turn on C-SPAN, like the rest of us, and hear plenty from the candidates!

NH Dems shop for a candidate
The Nashua Telegraph's Kevin Landrigan has a pretty good overview on the state of the NH primary ["Democrats shopping for a favorite"]. I met Landrigan during the 2000 campaign, and he has a good sense of what is going on in NH politics. Kerry, Gephardt, and Lieberman also lead the PoliticsNH Tally Board site: