Maybe the candidates got a good talking to by party leaders or maybe cooler heads prevailed after the foodfight in the 6th District (now known as the "Fightin' 6th") over the last 10 days, but at least one candidate is urging a toning down of the rhetoric in the race.
In our interests to see the campaign for the endorsement remain positive and focused on the issues, we've set up a website encouraging candidates, campaigns and the public to keep the messages positive. Check it out and sign Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment: Thou shall never speak badly of another Republican.
Remember to spread the word too, because Republicans have to stick together this year.
But on this next topic we'd ask to you keep it quiet.
By the way, happy birthday to Bachmann, who turns 50 today. (This was also my father's birthday, and my grandfather's birthday).
The blogosphere -- well, a little slice of it -- is aghast at three questions that I asked the other day as a result of a year's worth of warnings from former FEC Chair Bradley Smith.
Bob Collins, MPR's official political blogger, and therefore (I assume) MPR's employee, and therefore paid at least in part by my freakin' tax dollars, is questioning MY financial independence?! Get your stinking hand out of my back pocket before you say that again, hombre!
Of course, Bob, being a lefty, may think that government funding is actually the best way to keep political influence out of political campaign coverage. Rigggghhht. And, much like MPR's website claims, they're perfectly objective in their publicly funded coverage. That's two whole posts in themselves, so I'll just call b*llsh*t and move on as we agree to disagree.
Anyway, he only sort of insinuates against me personally, since he reads KvM which I write for (umm... every now and then, anyway). Outside of that I don't even make his list of blogs he reads every day. Guess I'll just shrivel up and freakin' die. Except the non-regular reading is mutual, so I suppose he gets a pass.
By the way, I had no idea the guy wrote for KvM; I thought Gary did all the work over there. And actually he is on my list of blogs I read every day, but the list I provided was the list of folks in the ONLY POLITICS section of my reader. Bogus Gold is a good read but when you post commentary about American Idol, sorry, you don't make the "politics only" section. Unless Kenny Rogers' poor facelift has now made it as a campaign issue, which it probably should from what I hear.
Anyway, we'll put that down as a "get lost, and take your poodle," and figure the translation from what I actually said to what he thinks I meant is a freebie. (I'll have to log in later to find out what I really just said).
Over at Residual Forces, we have incoming fire...
But I am tired of the constant insinuations that conservative bloggers and the Republicans are up to no good. (Remember it was him that had his undies in a bunch over the stupid Marriage CD) The guy is a biased hack, and he is doing nothing more than phishing for someone stupid enough to admit their undying devoting and absolute servitude towards Karl Rove.
Meanwhile, a kinder, gentler approach to the notion that a medium (blogs) that ushered in the era of "transparency" should consider being, well, transparent, from Minnesota Campaign Report.
Bob, I hope you'll re-post this, including previous responses, once it falls off your front page. Lefties and righties frequent your page pretty universally, and it's both important and interesting to keep this disclosure effort going.
The issue has obviously aroused a passion not seen since the great Marriage CD controversy, another issue that -- coincidentally or not -- revolved around telling people what you're doing and letting them decide whether it means anything.
And the great irony, of course, is the blogosphere, rightly so, developed because of a guiding principle of transparency.
In an age where we're told that blogs will have more impact on politics in this country, what's wrong with asking whether content is bought and paid for or is independent information?
Posted at 10:39 AM on April 6, 2006
by Bob Collins
I was driving home last night and I realize I have a confession to make. I lied. I lied on my resume...sort of. While I realize this disqualifies me from ever running for office or being the CEO of RadioShack, I must confess for, my soul requires it. I realized it today when, after taking today and tomorrow off as vacation days, I'm sitting here -- still in my pajamas at 10:40 in the morning, watching Channel 17's broadcast of a House Committee discussion on a nothing bill setting up legislative training forums.
There's a half-built airplane in my garage and a winter's worth of dog...ummm.. contributions in my backyard to pick-up and here I sit...a legislative couch potato.
If that's not a sign of a tortured soul, I don't know what is. There's
OK here goes: in my high school yearbook (Fitchburg Mass. High School Class of '72), I lied about my scholarly pursuits. See, we got these little cards to write them down and I realized I hadn't done anything. Sure, I played three years of hockey (no goals, no assists and not much playing time on a team that went 0-19-1) so I wrote that down. I was sports editor of the school newspaper so I wrote that down. But it seemed so....so.....empty. And so I did it. I wrote down Latin Honor Society 2,3, 4 (sophomore, junior, senior years).
And they printed it. I thought I could get away with it. And I did. Fact is, when I was reading the Latin version of The Aeneid, aloud in class, I had actually written the English translation down in pencil atop the Latin words (thanks to the Cliff notes). And I made sure I made mistakes as I was reading.
I didn't think Mr. Boyle bought it because as I was reading, from way back in the class. He slowly started walking down the aisle and then stopped right behind me, as I clutched by book closer to my chest to block his view. Ex-seminarians make tough Latin teachers, so I thought he'd blow the whistle and recall all of the yearbooks and I would be left to live a life of shame, fingered as a Latin loser.
There, it's done. I have a clear conscience.
And so I can tell you about this.
Posted at 2:18 PM on April 6, 2006
by Bob Collins
Every Thursday a group of MPR employees from different departments has a lunch get-together to discuss one facet of what we do. Today it was political coverage and they asked me to speak.
We were recalling the early days of MPR online...back in the mid '90s as we started talking about blogs and podcasts. I had asserted that one of the first blogs was actually Citizen Spin, which lasted about a week or two before one of the bosses got a nasty e-mail about it. Back then, one was all it took.
That was in 1999. (The good Citizen returned briefly during last year's shutdown. He was wearing winter clothing,by the way, because while we had original artwork the first time for various times of the year, the only one we could find was the one for winter).
Then, John Pearson, the guy who started MPR's online efforts, said that this was actually the first political blog (Democrats here | Republicans here | Bipartisans here), although we didn't call it a blog at the time, of course.
Then we started talking about podcats and Web-only "shows" and, until John reminded me, I had fogotten all about Spin Cycle. There's a few links still around on the MPR site but they're all broken so it's probably gone forever. But I used to bring the Capitol reporters in and stick in an analyst-type and open up the microphone and let them gas on. I'd snap pictures and then spend the afternoon matching up the audio and pictures in RealSlideshow.
We didn't have many listeners. But it was fun. And it planted a flag in the ground, I guess.
Posted at 2:32 PM on April 6, 2006
by Bob Collins
The RNC today announced the dates for the 2008 Republican National Convention. September 1 (Monday) through Thursday September 4, continuing the new thing of having it in September instead of mid-summer, and guaranteeing, presumably a battle-free convention.
I'm still betting on Miami or San Diego as the host city.
The coverage of which on CBS, I just realized, will be anchored by Katie Couric.
Posted at 6:58 PM on April 6, 2006
by Bob Collins
NPR blogger Robert Smith reports that a civil conversation took place today between an apparent liberal and a conservative who happens to be president of the United States. It was articulate, it was civil, and it gives us hope for a new approach in political discussions. "Bravo" to both of them.
The next step will be when this isn't news.
(PS: As of 7:05 p.m., Polinaut's formatting is all hosed up when viewed in IE. I have no clue what's going on but thanks for scrolling down)
Looks like the mudslinging has broadened beyond the candidates. Now the pollsters are getting into it.
The subject. John Zogby, the polling firm used by the Wall Street Journal.
These guys have never cared for each other anyway but it started with a Roll Call (subscription required) article by Stuart Rothenberg, in which he savages John Zogby's polling.
Zogby counters with a backhander...
Here are some things you just don't hear very much anymore:
"The beaches near Pyongyang are just lovely this time of year".
" Gee, I wish Duke Cunningham was back. It just isn't the same".
" I read Stuart Rothenberg's column every week and I really care about what he thinks".
But apparently he does because he sent out an e-mail and referenced this link.
Back over the net to you, Stuart.
Funny this should come up in a week when some folks have gotten themselves all worked up by my asking three simple questions.
Blue Ox has done some work to determine who is Molligator? A blog that appeared recently and disappeared just as quickly. It's gone now but apparently the postings were critical of gubernatorial candidate Becky Lourey.
While I can't be certain, a quick search pulled up sites here and here which seem to identify Molligator as paid Steve Kelley staffer Pam McCrory. My sources in the 7th Congressional District tell me that she is one of two Kelley staffers in the 7th and is based out of Bemidji. Ironically, this is confirmed by Molligator herself in, ahem, amusing comments left on Minnesota Blue.
If it were true that a blog was actually a front operated by a campaign, without actually stating that, would that be considered deceptive? Does it matter?
You tell me.