Congressional Races

Now that the primary is over and many Progressives are now stunned at the realities of Obama being center (I always take that term to mean multinational corporations and the super rich agenda) and McCain is running around with the queen of offshore outsourcing, Carly Fiorina, who isn't even an economist, a huge question emerges of NOW WHAT?

The Economist's View has a good post on how to bring about transformative change we really need in this country.

Instead of shilling for Barack, or Hillary, or whoever, we should have been pressuring the candidates to work for our votes
we're like cheap dates

Myself, I have assuredly felt saddened by the jumping on the bandwagon of personality versus policy in this election season and am almost at a loss for words because of it. I kept wondering the entire season what people were really working for in terms of actual change. I fear we have stepped backwards in getting policy that is based on fact, objectivity, statistical reality and what will work for all Americans.

We describe the problems almost to no avail. One of my favorite organizations, the Economic Policy Institute has incredibly damning statistics on how the US economy is not working for most Americans.

But, what can we do? How can we get real change? Well, I think we need to focus in on Congressional races and start demanding detailed position statements from candidates. I don't know about you but some of these candidate websites read like a advertising from a used car salesman. Where's the beef? I think we need to start demanding the beef now, work for and vote on what is served up.

What I'm hoping you all do is put any candidate's specific positions in the comment section and let's find a few who truly have overall economically great positions and write about them. If we cannot get Politicians standing up to special and corporate interests as well as not losing their spine in the cesspool called DC with it's high octane political gamers, I don't see how the United States will change anything.

Who's out there and where do they really stand? Let's dig!


I could already see that things were not as they appeared when Pelosi banned Labor from a meeting with the new Democratic freshman swept into office in 2006.

There's a war on for the heart of our party, and it seems that Speaker Pelosi has chosen sides. In a story that lamentably hasn't recieved the coverage that it deserves, Speaker Pelosi shows that she clearly didn't get the message of last month's election. The base of people power is populism, the sovereignty of the people.

Speaker Pelosi has a arranged a series of seminars for freshman representatives. On Wednesday, December 5, freshman representatives will be subjected to indoctrination in economics of fucking the people who sent you to Washington over by Robert Rubin, a free trade fanatic from the Clinton administration. It gets worse, Speaker Pelosi banned Labor from sending representatives to offer an opposing view. Never in my life did I think that I would see a Democratic speaker of the House ban Labor from talking to the people's representatives.

As far as I know, the later meeting with labor that all the Pelosi apologists kept saying would happen never occurred.

And the Hamilton Project?

They're the source of almost all of Obama's economic policy.

Which I suppose shouldn't be surprising, given that Obama was the keynote speaker at their launch.

As for transformational change, I wrote about that last year.

Sen. Obama isn't offering up transformational change. Unfortunately, it looks like things have to get even worse before they get better. The aftermath of Katrina woke most of American up to the realities of American life, and started a real discussion about what's happened to the social and economic life of this country.

The release of that populist genie into the electorate scared the living hell out of the Rubinites, and they've been priming Sen. Obama as their man for the White House ever since they launched the Hamilton Project. Their purpose is to discredit economic populism, and insert in its place a milquetoast liberalism that refuses to recognize that neo-liberal economic policies have failed us.

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I am deeply disappointed in the major blogs for they turned into glorified cheerleading camps instead of analyzing policy positions, votes, and demanding policy change. I saw what you are pointing out also and that's just not the change we need.

So, here we are. John Sweeney, president of the AFL-CIO, had strong words when Furman was made Obama's economic adviser. strong words about corporate money and influence in the Democratic party.

I think we need to locate Congressional races and see who has overall good positions.

I know Barry Welsh (IN-6th) assuredly does.

I hope the AFL-CIO doesn't pour money into the Presidential race and saves it for any Congressional races.

Now 60% of the American people look up information on candidates via the Internet. Getting the details out there on good candidates can only help.

I think the reason we saw primary blow outs on Clinton in some states is because she started becoming a fire breathing Populist, abet too late. They try to spin it all as cultural or race and so on, but she was really touting some truly Populist positions once she got rid of Mark Penn.

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the two national union federations (AFL-CIO and CtW) poured around $80 million into the Democratic Congressional races. More so than anyone else, that was what won these races. In 2008, the plan is for the AFL-CIO alone to more than double that.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The AFL-CIO and its unions said Friday they will spend an estimated $200 million on the 2008 elections, with the nation's largest labor federation devoting $53 million exclusively to grass-roots mobilization.
In addition, the AFL-CIO said it would deploy more than 200,000 volunteers leading up to the election, with special focus on battleground states such as Ohio, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin.

Obama threw the AFL-CIO a curveball though when he backed out of public funding, and said that he wanted to get 527 groups out of politics. Move-On has already shuttered its 527. 527s are one of the few (legal) ways for institutional donors to pour the kind of money the AFL-CIO wnats to into the presidential race.

Obama's going to eventually have to back out of this and let the 527s come out to play with the groups from the right, and is going to come of as a hypocrite.

This is yet another example of Obama being tone deaf on these things.

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In '06 we had a lot of good candidates running who truly were trade reformers, strong middle class, labor advocates. But, if they dump in a ton of money to a deaf ear in the Presidential race, what's the point on it?

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Thats the problem really. We can expect no meaningful trade and economic reform as long as we have the free trading DLCer's like Pelosi, Rangel, Emanuel, Hoyer et al in leadership postions in congress. A good place to start would be to toss these economic traitors out on their kiesters next election cycle.

Unfortunately we have the mother of all lesser of evils choices to make for president - the neo-liberal global candidate, and the cowboy capitalism neoconservative global candidate. Which one will do the least damage? which one might bring some incremental improvement? It is really not clear at this point.

Obama is pitching a brand of globalism with increased social safety nets - really just a band aid on the overall structural economic problems, while McCain is pitching the notion that supply side voodoo and its cousin "free" trade isn't working for everyone because we simply aren't doing enough of it

On trade they both stink. On Obama's economic team is a bunch of scary globalist academics, and on McCains team a bunch of big corporate shills.

we are so screwed. I think we have to look beyond the presidential race picking the candidate that we agree on other issues and feel will do the least harm, and focus more efforts on bringing in more populist leaning candidates in congressional and the other down ticket races to reinforce the wave of labor leaning and anti war dems from 06, and repudiate Pelosi's cowardice.

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This site is even officially non-partisan (although obviously littered with people from the left) and the reason it was set up that way was to analyze policy, votes objectively, analyze economics objectively, but coming from a people powered perspective. If the facts stack up, by all means write it, even if it's unorthodox or goes against party lines.

That's why I blog at least, I want true, detailed change in our government. But, I don't think we should be surprised, selling out the United States has been going on for a long time, certainly accelerated starting with Reagan.

So, who is running that is truly a fair trader, extensively labor focused, middle class focused? Odds are they won't have large campaign finance resources in that case.

Kay Hagan (D-NC Sen) is running against incumbent Elizabeth Dole who might e a Progressive Possible.

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