GOP Congressional candidates Danny Morales, Lea Marquez-Peterson, Marilyn Wiles and Brandon Martin.
You could smell the fear in the room at the Pima County GOP’s secret CD 2 Congressional Candidate Forum at the gaudy Oyster Club in Tucson. The candidates were asked how they could win in light of recent democratic victories, and how they could govern without dominating all three branches of government.
Lea Marquez-Peterson repeatedly pleaded for donations, noting with alarm that “Nancy Pelosi has already been in Arizona and made a half-million-dollar ad buy!” and that front-runner Ann Kirkpatrick had raised more money than she did.
Only 40 people attended the event, which the Republicans tried desperately to keep secret. The GOP tried to ban reporters, to prohibit photos, and to require all cell phones to be turned off. The forum was so secret that candidate Casey Welch didn’t show up.
Only one serious candidate
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Candidate Brandon Martin complained, “I hope we can speak in bigger venues.” (Last month, more than 400 people attended the Democrats’ Congressional candidate forum in Green Valley.)
Martin and candidate Danny Morales battled to take the more arch-conservative position. Candidate Marilyn Wiles didn’t really have many positions. Marquez-Peterson appeared to be the only serious candidate.
None of them proposed any idea to actually help people. They were all against things — like “chain migration,” not becoming “part of the establishment,” against the “Dreamers,” against raising taxes, and against the Mueller investigation.
Guns, Guns, Guns
Noting that hundreds of thousands of people were currently in the nationwide March For Our Lives against gun violence, the candidates had differing ideas for gun safety. Marquez-Peterson and Wiles called for better background checks. Morales called for arming teachers. Martin actually said, “We don’t have a gun problem. They don’t jump off shelves and shoot people.”
“Warrior woman”, anti-feminist, and perpetual political candidate Martha McSally wants me to “like” her Facebook page. The only reason someone like me might considering “liking” McSally’s page is to keep tabs on what the stealth candidate with no opinions and no ideas is doing.
But I find McSally’s ad featuring an intense, wild-eyed photo of Nancy Pelosi offensive.
Let’s face it: Republicans hate Pelosi because she’s a woman who got shit done. Pelosi has been labeled one of the most effective Speakers of the House— ever. Two of the hallmarks of Pelosi’s tenure are the passage of the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a landmark bill designed to improve the lives of women, and repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. (Seems to me that given McSally’s lifestyle, she would be in favor of both equal pay for women and demise of military’s failed anti-gay policy, but since McSally refuses to express opinions, we can only guess at her true beliefs.)
The obvious conclusion is that McSally wants to unseat CD2 Congressman Ron Barber and join Boehner in the House because it’s a powerful job that pays well, it’s got gonga health benefits, and you only work a handful of days per year. McSally has been on the government teet for years– in the military, as a Congressional aide, and at Raytheon. She is the poster child for the military industrial complex. Aspiring to be part of Boehner’s Do-Nothing Congress is right up her alley.
President Ronald Reagan has been elevated to God-like status by contemporary Republicans– particularly those who still believe in trickledown economics, union-busting, Welfare Queens, the "vegetable" ketchup, and spending BIG BUCKS on the military-industrial complex, while taking food out of the mouths of children.
Check out this recording from 1987 (below) in which he scolds Congress for exactly the brinksmanship that his contemporary fans are pursuing now.
Ironically, Nancy– Pelosi, not Reagan– channeled Ronnie today and scolded the House of Representatives in much the same way as Reagan did 27 years ago.
"This place [the House of Representatives] is a mess. Let's get our House in order," Pelosi said on the floor of the House. "We are legislators. We have come here to do a job. for the American people. And that job means we have to make the government run for the good of the people… What is brought forward today is without a doubt a measure designed to shut down government…" What her whole speech below.
Hot, muggy Charlotte was teeming with DNC fever on Sunday night. Although the Democratic National Convention doesn't start until Tuesday, many of delegates, journalists, politicians, and protesters are already in town.
Consequently, barricades and police were everywhere. In addition to police on foot, stationed at strategic places — like in front of the US Court House– there were swarms of 20 or so bicycle cops cruising the streets.
Fellow Huff Post citizen journalist Krzysztof Piotrowski and I ventured to town (from our hotel in South Carolina!) in search of the Occupy to Free Bradley Manning Dance at Frazier Park. Even after tweeting, e-mailing, and calling the protest organizers, we didn't find them. After about a one-mile trek, we did find the park and about 50 police on bicycles or motorcycles. Maybe they were looking for the dance also? Such is the life of a citizen journalist.
Back in uptown proper, we did find action and parties we couldn't get into behind the barricades. That is where we happened upon Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, who was confronted by reporters asking about campaign finance reform as she left a restaurant.
More photos after the jump.
1- City lights of Charlotte
2- Snarled traffic
3- Bicycle police checking IDs
4- CNN Grill (and a party where citizen journalists were not welcome.
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