Sunday, October 31, 2010

Independents' Midterm Campaign: Write a Letter to President Obama

JOIN THE CAMPAIGN - WRITE TO PRESIDENT OBAMA AND LET HIM KNOW WE NEED POLITICAL REFORM!

Committee for a Unified Independent Party

Independents' Midterm Campaign
Have You Written A Letter to President Obama?
 
white house picture  
 With the Midterms approaching, the media is going on about how independents are voting Republican, and President Obama is feverishly stumping for Democratic Party candidates. So where are independents? We're making ourstatement. We're writing to President Obama about  what independents want.  We are not Republicans - or Democrats. A Rasmussen Reports survey released this week reported that 76% of independent voters would fire every member of Congress and start from scratch. More importantly, we are building an independent movement from the bottom-up to take on the partisanship that pervades Washington. 

Our current Letter count is 30, on our way to 50.  Fifty Letters to the President by Tuesday from activists and leaders of the independent movement (and others who you are speaking with)  would have an  impact!  It would send a message that the independent movement is here to stay! 
  
Here are some of the latest excerpts from your persuasive letters:
  
Independents are interested in change and reforms, but the most important reforms that Independents are interested in is Political Reform. We Hate Parties....Listen to Independents. Listen to the reforms that we feel can make government more transparent and interesting. Ramon Pena, NY

You were going to change the way Washington works. Partisanship is the way it has always worked, That is what is wrong in Washington. El Crary, OH
No American of adult age should be excluded from voting just because they are not a member of a party. Your endorsement for open primaries across the United States would signal your support for the inclusion of ALL Americans in our political system and give you support among independents and independent-minded Democrats and Republicans.  
Dr. Omar Ali, NC

I believe the hyper-partisan electoral system must be reformed, it is the key to unlocking the door to the other reforms we need in the areas of education, the environment, immigration, etc.  ... We are concerned, Mr. President, that you have not given sufficient attention in your agenda to the concerns of independents, now 40% of Americans.  We are a new movement, a movement of outsiders - Cathy Stewart, NY

The well-being of our nation is in jeopardy.  It is time for unity, not party politics.  It is time to include independent voters in the process of government, from the ballot box to the Federal Election Commission.  Kim Wright, SD
While I think you are doing a pretty good job, especially considering the mess that you have inherited, I do have one SERIOUS complaint:  You are neglecting a key base that created your Presidential win -- we independents!!!!! We are doing our job at the grassroots, neighborhood by neighborhood, state to state, organizing ourselves and challenging the exclusionary policies that keep ordinary people locked out of the political process and disgusted by it. Now we need you to step to the plate.  Tara Lewis, Bronx, NY

I am writing to ask you to rethink your recent actions and positions which have moved you away from open primaries and opening up the political process.  The American people have a right to choose the person that best represents them and should not be limited to a political party that seldom encompasses all that the individual believes.  Dr. John Edmundson, VA
  •  In California, Independentvoice.org is doing a phonathon today in support of the redistricting initiative Prop 20, and campaigning for Abel Maldonado for Lt. Governor. Phonathon participants will be writing their letters to Obama on the spot.
  • Activists in the New York City Independence Party are spearheading the drive to take us over the 50 mark! 
  • Dr. John Edmundson of Richmond, VA wrote his own letter and then he got 3 other friends to sign letters.  He has printed out 30 letters and plans on getting more over the weekend
  • Catana Barnes of Reno, NV has posted her letter on the brand new Independent of Nevada website and Solomon Kleinsmith of Omaha, NE posted his letter on his blog and challenged others to write theirs.
If you've already written your letter, talk to other independents in your network about writing letters as well. Let us know who you're talking to and what you're doing to take this campaign out so we can let everyone know!

Here is where you send your letter.

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Washington, DC 20500
Email the president at:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact 
 Fax: 202-456-2461
 
Please send us a copy of your letter to national@cuip.org or fax to: 212-609-2801

Independently,
Nancy Ross (nross@cuip.org)
Gwen Mandell (gmandell@cuip.org)
 

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Midterm Elections and Political Reform: Dear President Obama

Dear President Obama,

The Partisan Revolution is over. The time for partisanship and factionalism has passed. Whatever the midterm elections "reveal", real progress for our country cannot be made under the current partisan system. I am writing to you as part of the campaign by CUIP/ independententvoting.org to encourage you to support structural political reform [such as open primaries, ranked voting, nonpartisan elections, etc.] as a way forward for our country and the whole world.

I'm sure I am only one of many people who called my dad on election night November 4, 2008, to celebrate a magical moment. I got home around 11:30pm to Sunnyside Queens from Harlem New York, after the clear and decisive numbers were announced. Voices resounded from kids in my neighborhood yelling "OBAMA" out their windows as I lingered on the stoop to my apartment building.  "I never thought this would happen in my lifetime," my dad said. 

My father and I are both transplanted Arkansans:

  • He's now in Richmond VA
  • I'm a New Yorker
  • He's a Kennedy-Clinton Democrat
  • I'm an independent
  • He was in charge of a unit of the Arkansas State Guard that was mobilized under Pres. Eisenhower's federal authority in Little Rock in 1957 that effectively tested the integration of public schools in the South
  • I helped put Lenora Fulani on the ballot in all 50 states in 1988, effectively testing the possibility of an independent run against the Democratic and Republican parties for President of the United States of America. 
  • (My daughters Lucy and Rena, who were 6 and 4 in 1988, were a great source of support and inspiration, and continue to be.)
I worked for you on the streets in Harlem during the primary when every black elected official in NYC was supporting Hillary Clinton. I received emails from your campaign that pegged me as a Hillary Clinton supporter. (I'm female and over 50.) 

I urge you to reconsider -- and get to know -- who independents are.

As Jackie Salit said in her most recent conference call: President Obama, We mean you no harm but we will press ahead to build our movement and pursue the structural reforms that will create more uncertainity for your party and for the Republican Party and you may not like...."

The independent movement is growing. We need political reform. I STRONGLY urge you to get to know and support this movement. 

IMHO, History demands it. And you can continue to lead.

In solidarity,
Nancy Hanks

Friday, October 29, 2010

Book Review, Mad as Hell by Doug Schoen and Scott Rasmussen

Mad as Hell
How the Tea Party Movement is Fundamentally Remaking our Two-Party System


I was not impressed by this book initially. I started with an open mind thinking maybe the Tea Party movement is more mainstream, less ideological or effective than I thought according to the claims in the introduction of Mad as Hell. The first half of the book left me the impression they were trying to affirm the relevance of the Tea Party as means of selling books as if to say ‘See, you are mainstream. Our book says so. Now buy our book.’

It is worth noting that the editing prior to publishing was not done. The book is rife with spelling and grammatical errors as many reviews for Mad as Hell on Amazon.com will point out in detail. I can't help but wonder if this publication was just a get-rich-quick for-profit venture.

Granted the challenge to Rasmussen and Schoen is the rapidly changing dynamic of what the Tea Party movement is and who it is led by. Even since I started this review things have taken a turn with the Rand Paul campaign violence episode. Some old questions are now up in the air again: Who or what is the Tea Party? Who are the leaders? Is the Tea Party a bunch of racist hillbillies or a legitimate political force? Is the Tea Party grassroots or Astroturf? Pinning an accurate label on the Tea Party is probably not impossible. Just about anything one might say could stick with some truth and relevance. But being a groundswell movement, any labels subscribed to the Tea Party can only be transitory at best. Time will still have to tell what the movement will definitively stand for and more importantly accomplish long term.

From page 5 of the introduction of Mad as Hell: “It is not only America’s most vibrant political force “at the moment” to quote The Economist, but a movement that has unprecedented broad-based support, and the power to influence the 2010 and 2012 elections and, indeed, the future of American politics in ways that have been fundamentally misunderstood and not appreciated.”

From their own statistics later in the book on the demographics of Tea Party sympathizers: 80% are White, just 2% African-American. 68% are Protestant. Are we to conclude that White and Protestant is the new mainstream?
According to the University of Washington study on the subject (http://depts.washington.edu/uwiser/racepolitics.html) 45% of White Americans support the Tea Party movement. White support is evenly divided in enthusiasm: 23% strongly support, 22% somewhat support. White population (18 years old and older) from the 2000 Census is 205,158,752. Translation, nearly 1 in 3 Americans is a Tea Party supporter. One third is hardly a majority but still a substantial showing. Mad as Hell opens by asserting that the Tea Party movement can be classified as mainstream. I was skeptical of that assertion, but given these numbers it is safe to say that the Tea Party in general terms is in fact a mainstream movement.

Effectiveness


The effectiveness of the Tea Party can clearly be measured in the short term, but what about long term? The Obama administration has advanced a number of ideological agendas and the Tea Party is a largely dare I say ‘knee jerk’ ideological reaction. Neither persuasion addresses the issue of the necessity of systematic power to the people political reforms. Each side of this short term ideological skirmish is looking at the outcome of this skirmish as an ominous indicator of the future of this country. Although those concerns probably have some merit, where are the strategic thinkers looking beyond this relatively brief skirmish? And why or how did we wind up on opposite sides seemingly on grappling for control of our republic?

More insight into the Tea Party direction and affiliation with the GOP from Mad as Hell: “”the plurality of GOP voters (43%) say their party has been too moderate over the past eight years, and 55% think it should become more like Alaska Governor Sarah Palin in the future.” These numbers reflect a party driven by a populist core increasingly uninterested in compromise.” (p.171) More like Sarah Palin? Uninterested in compromise? Let me know how that works out for ‘ya. I guess I draw a lot of my skepticism from the fact that factions uninterested in compromise usually have a limited lifecycle in this country or go to great lengths to maintain their control unconstitutionally and unethically (Jim Crow for example).

The Palin Factor


Perhaps my skepticism is related to the Palin factor. I just assumed that both conservatives and liberals know that more appeal is better than less when it comes to winning elections. Like, love or hate Palin, or somewhere in between, I thought it was pretty obvious that Sarah Palin only appealed to party loyalists and evidently white protestant GOP loyalists at that. Truth is, Sarah ‘Fox News’ Palin does not have wide appeal. And the Tea Party movement seems OK with these types of ideological purist arrangements. So, I guess I am skeptical why they think the inequality 33%<51% isn’t an impediment from the start. The best consensus builder (Obama) won in the 2008 Presidential election. He hasn’t done much for that consensus in the meantime, but the basic logic has not changed. I don’t know. Perhaps they are banking on continuing to manipulate the Electoral College and to gerrymander districts (something Karl Rove has unabashedly sworn to do) —another testament to how radically we need to reform the political process away from party manipulation and control. GOP 'tea party' gains in 2010 are from a different kind of establishment power assertion and manipulation of the system, not from a wider appeal and building coalitions of groups who disagree on some points. It appears to me to be a line in the sand when success depends on a successful sales pitch.

So, I started the book skeptical that the Tea Party movement could be considered truly ‘mainstream’. I’m much less skeptical now, but the definition of the Tea Party changes so much from day to day, that it will just be interesting to see what shakes out.

The Conclusion chapter of Mad as Hell was the best. The book would have held me better had I read the conclusion first. Still, if any chapter received any solid editing, I would think it would be the conclusion and the editing is noticeably absent. Perhaps coverage of such a mercurial subject as the Tea Party requires that you publish quickly to get out in front before the subject reinvents itself. I’ll give the authors that one, but I do wonder if there is a niche of sorts for a new style of relevant content much lengthier than a blog, not suited for published video content, but not worth publishing as a hard cover or even e-book as the content may not be relevant in six weeks.

About the author: Randy Miller is an independent in Utah, founder of the Utah League of independent Voters and an independent candidate for County Surveyor in Davis County Utah.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

women of a certain independence

Sarah Lyons (seated), Dr. Jessie Fields, Esteli Pacio-Manzano

Relying on political parties is "sort of a crutch" to avoid dealing with the issues

OPEN PRIMARIES
  • Partisanship Is Dead. Long Live Partisanship (by: Yana Kunichoff, t r u t h o u t | Report) Esteli Pacio-Manzano, a community organizer with the New York City Independence Party and independentvoting.org said that critics who attempt to argue for piecemeal reform do not realize the importance of a fully representative, nonpartisan democracy to the democratic process.
    "I think that you need political reform to be able to target everything," said Pacio-Manzano. "No one thing is going to be the solution."
INDEPENDENT VOTERS
MIDTERMS
TEA PARTIES
MINOR PARTIES
NEW YORK

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pennsylvania Courts Make Third Parties Outlaws

INDEPENDENT VOTERS
  • Independents decide on their candidate for Governor in the 2010 election (Baltimore Independent Examiner, Hassan Giordano) Independent voters are slowly becoming the State’s most powerful voting bloc, well behind Democrats yet barely trailing Republicans. In fact Independents have more registered voters in the City of Baltimore than do Republicans and are close to outpacing them in Montgomery County (behind by only 821 voters). As Independent voters in this state equal a little more than a half-a-million registered voters, the question still remains as to how many will actually turnout to vote this fall and to which party’s candidate they shall pull the lever for?
PENNSYLVANIA
  • Some political parties remain outlaws in Pa. - The courts have effectively kept them off the ballot. (By Oliver Hall, Philadelphia Inquirer) Pennsylvanians may notice something unusual when they go to the polls in November: Their choices for governor, lieutenant governor, and U.S. Senate will be limited exclusively to Republican and Democratic candidates. Only four other states' 2010 general-election ballots are so restrictive.
UTAH
h/t to Randy Miller the Utah League of Independent Voters for these:
NEW YORK

Monday, October 18, 2010

"The media has molded politics into a blood sport."

MIDTERMS
COLORADO
NEW YORK

Friday, October 15, 2010

Barron: Don't Let Cuomo Hide Behind Paladino's Big Mouth

There's a debate coming up on Monday night  at Hofstra University that includes all the New York governor candidates.  See Celeste Katz's article below for info on the debate.

Please read Frank Lombardi's interview with Barron in the NY Daily News  "I'm In It To Win, Not To Spoil, Not To Entertain". The Brooklyn Councilman had this to say about the Dem/Repub (although, Cuomo is also running on the NY Independence Party line) dynamic duo: "I’m saying Paladino is not going to win. He’s not going to win. He doesn’t have a chance of winning really. But Cuomo is hiding behind this loose cannon to neglect dealing substantively with our community. He’s hiding behind that..."



Here's the latest on Monday's big gubernatorial debate at Hofstra University, which is co-sponsored by Newsday and News12.
hofstra debate masthead.jpg

Your candidates, in alphabetical order, are:

The 90-minute debate starts at 7 p.m. and will be telecast live and commercial-free on News 12 Long Island, News 12 Westchester, News 12 Hudson Valley, News 12 The Bronx, News 12 Brooklyn, Time Warner Cable’s NY1, NY1 Noticias (with Spanish interpretation) and YNN. The debate is also being made available to National Public Radio stations throughout New York State.
If you want to be there in person, 100 tickets are being made available to the general public through a random drawing at www.hofstra.edu/2010debate, so go there to register before Friday, October 15, at 9:00 a.m. (Ie., step on it!)


INDEPENDENT VOTERS
IDAHO
CALIFORNIA
NEW YORK

Thursday, October 14, 2010

TODAY'S NEWS HEADLINES for INDEPENDENT VOTERS 10/14/10

Pollsters and election statisticians have turned an eye to registration numbers in an effort to keep their heads above water in the sea change that is taking place in American politics. More people are becoming independent, choosing candidates not parties. There's chatter about a third party... And as Jackie Salit pointed out in her recent Report from the President at IndependentVoting.org 
"Right now, it’s very hard for the American people to express themselves.  The media has molded politics into a blood sport.  And the political system channels everything into a left/center/right, Democratic/Republican paradigm that undermines progress and rewards division. Independents are trying to make a statement about all of that. But even so, we barely register as “real,” even though, paradoxically, we now decide many important elections." 
One of the ways independents have taken on this fight is by challenging partisan attempts by both Repubs and Dems (depending on which party is the "minority" party in the state legislature) to close primaries. Such is the case in Idaho where a federal judge will hear testimony in a trial that could have national implications. Idaho voters do not register by party. Californians voted in June for a Top Two open primary referendum that enfranchised 3.4 million decline to state independents.


The gov race in New York has just gained new life.  New Yorkers have two good choices in November -- Andrew Cuomo on Column C the Independence Party line, or Brooklyn City Councilmember Charles Barron -- who I personally believe deserves support in his challenge to the Democratic Party establishment. Councilman Barron, a former Harlem Black Panther Party activist in the sixties, has taken a very positive step forward in the attempt to create ballot status for the new Freedom Party. Freedom needs 50,000 votes on Column J. 


More below...

INDEPENDENT VOTERS

  • Wooing Hearts and Minds in Land of Independents (By DEVLIN BARRETT, Wall Street Journal)  Independent voters will be crucial to congressional races all over the country, and nowhere more than in Connecticut, where the biggest party is no party at all.
  • Registration Trends in ‘Purple’ America (By Rhodes Cook, Wall Street Journal) From the late 1980s to 2008, the share of Democratic voters decreased from a slight majority of all those registered (51%) to 43%. The number of Republicans remained virtually unchanged, slipping slightly from 33% to 32%. Meanwhile, the proportion of those that chose not to identify with either party spiked upward from 16% in 1987 to 25% in 2008.
  • Voters want a different change (By CHUCK RAASCH • Gannett National Writer, Oregon Statesman Journal) All across the country, independents — many of them struggling blue-collar workers — are making similar calculations. Many helped elect Obama in 2008 and solidified the Democrats' hold on Congress. They appear to be just as engaged in this new season of discontent, but on the opposite side.
  • Our Opinion: Can Anyone Really Tap Into Voter Frustration? (Press & Dakotan) Frankly, other than its condemnation of the failures of both political parties, the independents’ proclamation relies on dashes of familiar rhetoric and promissory populism as it tries to tap into a widespread anger, now mostly loudly presented by the Tea Party, without aligning itself with any particular political ideology.
  • Election Unlikely to Change Policy or Politics (John Zogby, Forbes/DATA PLACE) The strongest trend in our politics is contempt for both parties that is greatest among independents, but also includes voters affiliated with both parties. These people want solutions and cooperation; and if neither party offers that, I believe they would be very open to a third party that offers it.
  • Triage Time for Democrats - Who can be saved with money, and who needs operational help that can't be delivered in time? (by Charlie Cook, National Journal/Off to the Races) Since ideologues and partisans are pretty much diametrically opposite of independents, tackling both jobs -- stimulating the base while reaching out to independent voters in a tough environment -- is awfully hard.
  • MediaPlanIQTM: How to Influence Independent Voters - Still Time to Sway Votes for Midterm Elections (marketwise)
  • Partisan Voter Registration Totals (Michael P. McDonald, Huffington Post) Twenty-nine states plus DC offer persons the option of declaring a party affiliation when they register to vote. Party registration totals thus provide a snapshot of the overall partisan balance within a state. Comparisons of these statistics over time provide a broader picture of overall trends.
OPEN PRIMARIES
  • Trial begins in GOP closed primary lawsuit (By Ben Botkin - Magic Valley Times-News writer) “It would have national ramifications,” said Harry Kresky, an attorney for IndependentVoting.org, an intervening party in the case that represents 11 independent voters in Idaho.
  • Idaho GOP to make case for closing primary (KHQ Associated Press) Testimony Wednesday focused on a survey by a Republican pollster that found support for the idea that Democrat and Independent voters crossover into Republican primaries.
  • GOP argues for closed primary (Todd Dvorak Associated Press, The Spokesman Review - WA) The survey found that 41 percent of those voters identified themselves as non-GOP voters. Of those, 39 percent who identified as Democrats or likely to vote for Democrats said they usually take part in Republican primaries.
  • Dennis: Republican Vs. Republican (Spokesman Review - WA)
  • Republican Vs. Republican, Mad Magazine-style (DennisMansfield.com) It is a trial of huge proportions, because it is a trial the outcome of which will mold the future of the state - who will run for office, who will serve in office and what policies will be followed for education, for the sanctity of life, for spending and for so many other vital issues.
  • Closed primary trial kicks off in federal court (Spokesman Review/Eye on Boise)
  • A positive step away from partisanship (By Harvey Platt, The Oregonian) One positive step toward inclusion would be establishing an "open primary" in Oregon, much like both California and Washington have recently enacted. The systematic exclusion of up to a third of independent eligible primary voters in our state is regrettable.
BLOOMBERG
WFP
  • Still Working for Working People (Katrina vanden Heuvel, The Nation/Editor's Cut) As WFP executive director Dan Cantor told New York Magazine, “We’re looking to get a good vote on the Working Families line and use the power that accrues to that vote to influence outcomes.”
NY GOV DEBATE
  • Jeremy Morlock: The Circus is Coming to Town (East Aurora Advertiser) Charles Barron is a former Black Panther running on the newly formed Freedom Party line. The outspoken councilman from Brooklyn arranged for the dictator Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe to be honored with a reception at New York's City Hall in 2002. Barron decided to run in a protest bid for governor after becoming upset that the Democratic Party's statewide slate included only white people. "The Freedom Party will not stand by & allow the Democratic Party or anyone else to continue to take the Black & Latino vote for granted," the party website states.

Talk/Talk: Making (Non) Sense of an Irrational World


Talk/Talk: Making (Non) Sense of an Irrational World

Authored by Fred Newman, Jackie Salit
Introduction by Omar H Ali
Edited by John Opdycke
For many years, Fred Newman and Jacqueline Salit-two leading activists and intellectuals within the independent political movement-have met on the weekends to have coffee and watch political talk and interview shows. They watch Charlie Rose, Chris Matthews, Meet the Press, This Week with George Stephanopoulos (now Christiane Amanpour), The McLaughlin Group, Hardball, and other shows. After they watch them, they have a conversation. In early 2005, they began transcribing these conversations and distributing them to their friends and followers. Over the years, their "talk about the talk"-hence the name Talk/Talk-developed into a popular weekly missive that is presently distributed via e-mail to tens of thousands of readers worldwide. Making (Non) Sense of an Irrational World is a compilation of some of their most popular and thought provoking discussions from the last five years.


Hankster recommended! Independents and progressives of all stripes should read this book. Several times!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

earthly extravation

TODAY'S NEWS HEADLINES for INDEPENDENT VOTERS 10/13/10

OPEN PRIMARIES
THIRD PARTY
BLOOMBERG
TEA PARTY
  • Poll examines Tea Party faith values - Nearly Half of Tea Party Movement also identify with Christian Conservative Movement (By Public Religion Research Institute) They are largely Republican partisans. More than three-quarters say they identify with (48%) or lean towards (28%) the Republican Party. More than 8-in-10 (83%) say they are voting for or leaning towards Republican candidates in their districts, and nearly three-quarters (74%) of this group report usually supporting Republican candidates.
  • Tea party convention hears congressional hopefuls (By TYLER WHITLEY, Richmond TIMES-DISPATCH) Asked at the Virginia Tea Party Patriots Convention whom he would support for Speaker of the House, Golden answered "Ron Paul."
FLORIDA
CALIFORNIA
  • Maldonado, Bowen should keep jobs (BY San Diego UNION-TRIBUNE EDITORIAL BOARD) Maldonado is highly unconventional by California political standards, a Republican willing to buck the GOP establishment and work with moderates and across party lines.
COLORADO
  • 527 equals sleaze (LETTER The Aspen Times) One canvasser came to my door and told me — incorrectly — that I might as well vote for Wilson because there is no way independent candidate Kathleen Curry, who is running for re-election as our House District 61 state representative, can win as a write-in candidate.
  • In fact, as a widely respected legislator and the only candidate in the race with actual elected experience, Kathleen is clearly the leading contender.
  • Curry sees tough fight for the election (by Curtis Wackerle, Aspen Daily News) Curry was a democrat until dis-affiliating in December, citing frustration with the increasing bitterness of the two-party system. She is attempting to do what many political observers say is impossible: Win as a write-in candidate.
  • Curry's dedication should earn votes (LETTER Glenwood Springs CO Post Independent) I encourage other citizens of the Roaring Fork Valley in joining me in demonstrating our support for rational centrist policies by writing-in Kathleen Curry for State Representative. Let's lead Colorado in making this election day Independent's Day as a rejection of political extremism and partisan gridlock!
  • Korkowski sticks to conservative principles (by Curtis Wackerle, Aspen Daily News) “It didn’t look like there was a solid conservative candidate in the race ... so I decided to do it,” said Korkowski, who is in a three-way race to represent House District 61 with democrat Roger Wilson of Missouri Heights and unaffiliated candidate Kathleen Curry of Gunnison.
FLORIDA
MAINE
  • Race for Maine Governor 2010: Who the candidates are, and what they stand for (By Steve Mistler, Lewiston Sun Journal) Maine voters this November will have five distinct options for governor, along with five declared write-in candidates.
SOUTH DAKOTA
NEW YORK
  • New York’s Debate Gap (NY Times) Mr. Paladino’s insistence that any debates include the minor candidates, and that excluding the African-American and female candidates would be unfair, has given the front-running Mr. Cuomo cover to avoid a two-candidate debate.
  • Poll: 58 % of Voters Say a 3rd Political Party is Needed (Reported by: Jane Flasch, WHAM Channel 13 ABC Rochester) Barron is a New York City Councilman.  He broke with the Democratic Party over Andrew Cuomo’s choice of Rochester Mayor Bob Duffy for a running mate. “The Democratic Party has taken us for granted,” he said in announcing his run.  “The Republican Party has ignored us.”  Barron is seeking 50 thousand votes to make his “all Black” Freedom Party a recognized party on the state ballot.
  • Avella lands teachers union nod (BY LISA L. COLANGELO, NY Daily News) RECENT POLLS may show former Councilman and Democratic state Senate candidate Tony Avella lagging behind Republican incumbent Frank Padavan. But last week, Avella unveiled an endorsement he thinks is key to winning in the Democratic-leaning 10th Senate District.
  • AG candidate Dan Donovan believes opponent Eric Schiderman is part of the problem in Albany (Tom Wrobleski, SI Advance)
  • New Yorkers’ Anger at Politicians Doesn’t Fuel a Surge in Voter Registration (By SAM ROBERTS, NY Times) Despite professed outrage over dysfunctional politicians, few unregistered New Yorkers have been motivated enough to register to vote in November, according to election officials.
  • Dan Donovan Clears Independence Party Chief In Loan Probe (BY CELESTE KATZ
  • Daily News/Daily Politics)
  • Real Estate Flexes Muscle - Industry Backing Both Democrats and Republicans in Aggressive Campaign Push (By ELIOT BROWN, Wall Street Journal)
  • Freedom Party event launches election campaign (By Dee Knight, Bronx, N.Y., Workers World) An exciting event launched the Freedom Party campaign on Oct. 3 at the Church of the Resurrection, which also serves as home to the South Bronx Community Congress. Charles Barron and Ramon Jimenez, candidates for governor and attorney general, respectively, both spoke eloquently about the emerging Black and Latino/a alliance that sees well beyond the Nov. 2 elections to a new “people’s power bloc” that can genuinely fight for and protect the interests of working people in the city and state of New York.
  • 'General' mayhem - AG debate bares 'party' animals (By BRENDAN SCOTT NY Post Correspondent) The Rev. Al Sharpton, Pedro Espada Jr. and Carl Paladino unexpectedly took center stage in yesterday's testy attorney-general debate, as both candidates sought to force the other to carry his party's baggage.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

imagine

WEEKEND News Headlines for Independent Voters 10/9/10

INDEPENDENT VOTERS
  • King: This country could use more independent voters (By BILL KING, Houston Chronicle) Washington must be rolling over in his grave today as politicians from both sides adamantly defend the highly partisan political life we now endure. Many argue that the parties are an essential element of the American political system to justify their quasi-legal status. Sorry, but our Founding Fathers disagreed and so do I.
MIDTERMS
  • Voter Disgust Isn’t Only About Issues (By MATT BAI, NY Times/Politics) Independents: These voters did not hate politicians. They simply saw both parties, along with the news media and big business, as symptoms of the larger societal ailment. And this underlying perception, that politicians in Washington conduct themselves just as childishly and with the same lack of accountability as the students throwing chicken casserole in the lunchroom, may well be the principal emotion behind the electorate’s propensity to vote out whoever holds power.
  • Marco Rubio takes fire from Meek, Crist in Florida Senate debate (By Philip Rucker, Washington Post) Crist tried to rise above the partisan fray and present himself as a level-headed, common-sense alternative.
2010
  • Michael Bloomberg and Third Party Dreams (Posted by MICHAEL CROWLEY, Time mag) But I was struck by how firmly Bloomberg's close friend (and investment manager) Steve Rattner seemed to dismiss the idea on "Morning Joe" a couple of days ago
  • The independent herd - Is the nation in the midst of an unheralded political realignment? (By STEVEN STARK, The Boston Phoenix) The big news in this election cycle is the rise of the Tea Party. Fair enough. But since every action causes a reaction, passing under the radar is an accompanying development that could have even more far-reaching consequences — the rise of an emboldened third force in our politics. This could even lead to the emergence of a new independent party that could alter the outcome of the 2012 presidential election, not to mention the future course of our history.
  • You're Fired, Mr. President!--Donald Trump's New Hampshire poll may just be a front or billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg. (By CARL KELM, Wall Street Journal/Political Journal)
CALIFORNIA
  • Appeal filed over open primary (Santa Cruz Sentinel) Fremont attorney Gautam Dutta, who opposes the open primary system established under Proposition 14, is appealing the court decision that upholds the measure… Last month, a San Francisco Superior Court judge dismissed Dutta's arguments and allowed the open primary system to proceed.
  • Minor party governor candidates rally for more attention (Sac Bee/Capitol Alert) People walking by the Capitol's west steps around 1 p.m. today would have seen Green Party candidate Laura Wells, Libertarian Party hopeful Dale Ogden and Chelene Nightingale of the American Independent Party talking to about 10 people, most of them supporters and aides of the candidates.
KENTUCKY
  • Independent seeks House District 35 seat held by long-time Democratic incumbent (By Nancy C. Rodriguez, Louisville Courier Journal - KY) Independent Michael P.W. Lewis wants the seat held by Democrat Jim Wayne since 1991. Lewis, who won national exposure on CNN earlier this year when he pushed for passage of a bill that would have allowed registered Independents to vote in Kentucky primaries, said he wants to take partisan bickering out of state government, and “bring the government back to the people.”
SOUTH DAKOTA
  • Independent votes should count (Rapid City Journal Editorial Board) Not that long ago, women and minorities were denied the right to vote, making the privilege that much more important to them. One man, one vote is the backbone of our democracy. If you buy all of that, Ben Nesselhuf has a message for you. The Democratic challenger for Secretary of State wants South Dakota to allow independents to vote in primary elections.
MARYLAND
  • Third-party candidates hope voters are ready to take a chance on them (By Adam Bednar, Carroll County Times - MD) Dr. Omar H. Ali, an associate professor at University of North Carolina at Greensboro who has studied third-party politics in America, said traditionally third parties have been based around advocacy on single issues, such as slavery, women's suffrage and labor issues.
  • Independent Voters (RADIO CLIP Michael Eric Dyson Show) Politicians in both the Republican and Democratic parties are working to galvanize their voter base in November. But, they’re not the only two parties involved. Dr. Omar Ali, an associate professor of African-American and Diaspora Studies at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, joins us to discuss third-party politics and its role in this particular election.
NEW YORK
  • Democrats Seek To Rally Base (Politics on the Hudson) For example, Cuomo’s initial hesitation with accepting the endorsement of the liberal Working Families Party and then their backing after they agreed with his platform shows he can build a coalition, Jacobs said.