NC-Sen: Dole Slammed on Immigration

[First, a cheap plug for my blog Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races.]

Earlier this week, the Charlotte Observer slammed Elizabeth Dole on immigration:

Sen. Dole worked hard to help kill a decent immigration reform bill in the U.S. Senate in July. It wasn't perfect, but it provided a practical, intelligent way to secure the border -- and pay for it. It also took the sensible step of providing illegal immigrants a conditional path to legal status. Too bad lawmakers such as Sen. Dole were more interested in shouting "amnesty" and opposing any step toward legal status than they were in helping the folks back home.

Mountains of Would-Be Governors

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At the Public Policy Polling blog, you'll find lots of interesting commentary about North Carolina electoral politics. Today's post looks at how most of the gubernatorial candidates are viewed by folks living in the mountains.

In the Democratic race for Governor, Lieutenant Governor Bev Perdue had a big lead in the region over Treasurer Richard Moore in September but has seen the margin decline every month since to the point that Moore led Perdue 35-30 in the December poll. So far Perdue has led all of the polls on a statewide level. Neither of the candidates has shown much interest or spent much time traveling to western North Carolina so far during the campaign so the region is probably up for grabs to the candidate who works harder to court the support of mountain voters in 2008.

One candidate who has been traveling regularly to the region is senator Fred Smith, one of the Republican candidates for Governor, who has attended numerous BBQs on his behalf in small towns over the last few months. After finishing third behind opponents Bill Graham and Bob Orr in our September poll, Smith has taken the lead by increasingly greater margins in our last three polls. Traveling to places like Brevard, Robbinsville, and Marion has clearly helped his standing with WNC Republicans.

Fred "The Asphalt King" Smith (who is not a politician, by the way) knows a few things about retail vote-gittin'. For example, he knows how easy it is to buy support from old people with platters of BBQ and hush puppies. I wonder if Smith told his audiences that he grew up in an orphanage and went on to suck up more than $40 million in taxpayer dollars bidding on highway construction projects.

Our Navy son and his shipmates are home!

On Wednesday, we went onto the naval base in Norfolk, VA to meet and greet our son who has been sailing on the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-65) in the Persian Gulf for the last 7 months. They were part of a strike group that I suppose was Deadeye Dick and GWB's whet dream of bombing Iran when and if they could find any excuse to do so.

50 State Blog Roundup 12/21/07

In all the mad rush surrounding this time of year bloggers at the 50 State community blogs are busy staying on top of local news. It's a bit shorter than last week, but should give you some good reading over the weekend.

A personal thank you to Karl for putting together a comprehensive roundup for us last week and for helping me pull together submissions for this week.

Here's your 50 State Blog Roundup for the week of December 21, 2007:

Where in the World is Elizabeth Dole?

If you got a glimpse of Elizabeth Dole this year, count yourself among the lucky few.

When it came to protecting North Carolina communities against an unwanted outlying landing field, providing health insurance for children, and taking a stand against Big Oil, Dole was missing in action.

The one place she could be found was among the thickets of Bush Republicans who sided with special interests and blocked Congress from moving forward on our top priorities.

Maybe in 2008 Dole will stop obstructing and actually deliver. Or maybe she’ll keep finding excuses for her obstruction.

Here’s a holiday list of what North Carolina families were looking for this year, and what they’ll keep demanding in the New Year.

Click here to read more.

McHorny's $3.25 mil belies so-called anti-earmark "crusade"

Two earmarks for $3.25 million.

That's what Pat McHorny wrote letters asking for this year while promoting himself as an anti-earmark crusader on the House floor:

"We need to lay clear these earmarks . . . so the American people can judge the worthiness of the programs and the money allocated to them."

And now he's saying he won't ever ask for any earmarks, starting next year.

N.C. College Democrats Host 2008 Winter Reception Honoring Former State Representative Wayne Goodwin

The North Carolina Federation of College Democrats is proud to be hosting its first ever Winter Reception following the N.C. Democratic Party’s State Executive Committee meeting in Hamlet, North Carolina on January 26th, 2008. The event will be held at the historic Hamlet Train Depot and will honor former State Representative Wayne Goodwin.

This is the first fundraiser of its kind held by the Federation. The group is asking for sponsorships beginning at the $100 dollar level. All proceeds will benefit the Federation and its various projects throughout the state. The event is being held in the eighth congressional district, one of the districts Democrats are focusing heavily on for the 2008 elections.

Bill Graham's New Campaign Manager

Republican Bill Graham sure is an outsider. Even his staff operates outside of the law.

Campaign manager Marty Ryall resigned in 2003 as executive director of the Arkansas GOP amid federal investigations into the party’s finances. Four of the five other staffers were fired in the aftermath.

Ryall resurfaced this year working for another outsider, indicted Kentucky Gov. Ernie Fletcher.

Ryall joins Michael Aaron Lay, Graham’s campaign spokesman, who was indicted earlier this year of voter fraud in connection with Patrick McHenry.

Lay, a field director for McHenry, was indicted in May on felony voter fraud charges. In 2004, Lay voted twice in elections while living in a district in which he was not a permanent resident.

No more weenie mac. Give me the toughest better Democrats.

I heard that Senator Obama asked a question of former Senator John Edwards recently. It went something like this;

"Senator Edwards, who is a good guy, he's been talking a lot about 'I'm going to fight the lobbyists and the special interests in Washington.' Well, the question you have to ask is: Were you fighting for (citizens) when you were in the Senate?" [h/t cosbo]

Ellinorianne at daily kos gave a pretty thorough response to that question.

- I've bumped this, not because it was a candidate diary, but because it is such a great story of overcoming adversity.

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