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Purging The `O’ Word: Colorado Dems and The Middle East

By Rob Prince

Colorado Democrats meeting in Greeley in late May came up with an elaborate platform, most of which makes for interesting reading even if the candidates hardly take their own party’s resolutions seriously.

The platform begins with a ringing condemnation of the US invasion of Iraq stating that our troops should be safely pulled out as soon as possible with full concern for their welfare and that of the Iraqi people’. It goes on to note, quite aptly, that `the current administration has violated our constitutional rights’. It calls for the `censure and impeachment of both George Bush and Dick Cheney for having `abused their power and appear to have repeatedly violated the constitution’. Support for both `quality universal healthcare for all’ as a basic right and supports `legal and safe abortions’ follow.

"Cut and Run": A Winning Slogan and Strategy if the Democrats are Serious About Wanting to Win

By Dave Lindorff, http://www.thiscantbehappening.net/

The Democrats in Congress are having trouble coming up with a position on the War in Iraq because they are so afraid of Republican charges that they are the "cut and run" party.

It's a pathetic spectacle, and they should give it up. The way I see it "cut and run" is the slogan the Democrats should adopt as their own for the 2006 election year.

Shameful Straddling On Iraq

By Robert Scheer, www.tompaine.com

Robert Scheer is a contributing editor to The Nation, and editor of Truthdig.com, from which this is reprinted.

Editor's Note: The Senate began debate Wednesday on an amendment to the 2007 defense authorization bill by Sens. John Kerry and Russ Feingold that would set a deadline of July 1, 2007 for troop withdrawl from Iraq. The amendment is opposed by Sens. Carl Levin and Jack Reed, who have backed a competing resolution supported by Democratic leadership that does not specify a deadline.

Party's `Soul' Up For Grabs

Centrist Democrats, Progressives Scrutinize Lieberman-Lamont
By DAVID LIGHTMAN, http://www.courant.com

WASHINGTON -- For Democratic activists around the country, Connecticut's U.S. Senate primary is not just a local contest between a veteran political figure and an aggressive newcomer; it's a crucial test of whether the left or the center has more influence in the national party.

"This is a battle for the soul of the Democratic Party," said Marshall Wittmann, political analyst at the Democratic Leadership Council, a group of party moderates.

AFT Connecticut Endorses Ned Lamont for U.S. Senate

AFT Connecticut, the state’s second largest AFL-CIO union representing more than 26,000 professionals, including teachers, healthcare, higher education, and public employees, has endorsed Ned Lamont for U.S. Senate in Connecticut.

“This endorsement came down to the issues of education and healthcare and the draining of resources from our state in order to fund the war in Iraq,” said Sharon Palmer, president of AFT Connecticut. “Ned Lamont understands these issues and agrees with our positions.”

Reject Congress

By Missy Comley Beattie, http://www.opednews.com

Every Congressperson who rejected a timetable for withdrawing US troops from Iraq should have to personally replace a soldier who is serving now. Every Congressperson who rejected this withdrawal should have to suit up, wearing the uniform of one of the branches of the US military. Every Congressperson who because of partisan politics uttered inanities linking 9/11 and Iraq with “we are fighting terrorists and we won’t cut and run” and “achieving victory is our only option” should be deployed or have their children deploy to Iraq immediately. Each one should be boarding a military transport aircraft for Baghdad today.

Politics 101: Broadcasting Indecision & Disunity Loses Elections

By David Sirota

Call me crazy, but I just do not understand how the Washington Democratic Party establishment can publicly say that in advance of the 2006 elections, there needs to be no Democratic Party unity on the Iraq War - the most pressing national security issue of the day. To make such a claim, you have to be either dumb; totally out of touch with the majority of Americans who want an exit strategy; deliberately dishonest because you are embarrassed you supported the war in the first place; disdainful of voters' intellect; or all of the above. But, incredibly, that's what Democrats in Washington are telling the media, and consequently, broadcasting to the American people.

Sheeler Apologizes to Senator John Kerry for Misinformation

Carl Sheeler for U.S. Senate
Rhode Island – 2006
Contact: Sara Pearson (401) 397-4618 office
sara@carlsheeler.com

Carl Sheeler for U.S. Senate

Providence, RI – Marine veteran and Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Carl Sheeler offered his apology to Senator Kerry following his appearance at Lt. Governor Charlie Fogarty's campaign headquarters’ grand opening this evening on Atwells Avenue.

Feingold rips fellow Democrats for wobbly stances on Iraq

Senator gets a rousing reception from liberals at D.C. conference
By CRAIG GILBERT, http://www.jsonline.com

Washington - Speaking to a cheering crowd of liberal activists Wednesday, Sen. Russ Feingold took a shot at some of the other Democrats who might run for president in 2008, saying his opposition to the war in Iraq is clear-cut and longstanding.

"I didn't just write an op-ed about this," Feingold said at the annual Take Back America conference. "I didn't after the fact say, 'Gee, you know that was kind of a mistake.' I just plain voted against it because I thought it would be a terrible mistake in the fight against terrorism."

Lieberman faces decision on whether to run as independent

By SUSAN HAIGH, Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. - Democratic Sen. Joe Lieberman, warily watching his primary challenger advance in the polls, must soon decide whether to start collecting signatures for a possible independent bid this November.

Lieberman's campaign contends that it's focused only on winning the Aug. 8 primary, but the Democrat has not ruled out petitioning his way onto the November ballot as part of a backup plan to secure a fourth term in the Senate.

Jules Witcover: Optimism is growing among progressives

Jules Witcover, The Examiner
http://www.examiner.com

BALTIMORE - At this week’s conference of the progressive Campaign for America’s Future, prospective Democratic presidential candidates presented their credentials in a testimony of how the organization’s influence and clout have grown in the party.

The headliners included the current frontrunner in the polls, Sen. Hillary Clinton, 2004 nominee Sen. John Kerry and the emotional favorite on the Democratic left, Sen. Russ Feingold, as well as a who’s who of the progressive activist community.

McCotter Refuses to Take a Stand on Iraq War

McCotter only one of 5 “present” votes
http://www.tony4congress2006.com

Dearborn Heights, MI – On Friday, after lengthy debate on the War in Iraq in the House of Representatives, Republican Congressman Thaddeus McCotter was one of only 5 Congressional members to vote “present” instead of voting yes or no on supporting our troops. The U.S. House of Representatives voted on Friday to keep armed forces in Iraq without any timetable for their removal.

Sheeler: "Establishment D.C. Democrats Need Courage"

Carl Sheeler for U.S. Senate
Rhode Island – 2006
Contact: Sara Pearson, (401) 397-4618, sara@carlsheeler.com

Providence, RI - Marine Veteran and progressive Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Carl Sheeler has condemned D.C. lawmakers for their political rhetoric and posturing while risking the lives of U.S. troops in Iraq and using fear of terrorist acts upon American soil.

"On the issue of troop withdrawal, establishment D.C. Democrats need the courage of their convictions. The majority of the public will consider them patriotic and strong, if they fight for an earlier withdrawal. Level with the public and show the courage of your convictions.

Hillary: More Boos for Pro-War Stand

By Norman Solomon, http://www.alternet.org/story/37634

Two years from now, Hillary Clinton might be pleased to hear the kind of boos and antiwar chants that greeted her days ago when she spoke at the annual Take Back America conference of Democratic activists and argued against a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. But so much of politics is about timing. And right now, Clinton is facing a serious problem of premature triangulation.

Lamont rips Lieberman for Iraq stance

By PETER URBAN, http://www.connpost.com

WASHINGTON — Greenwich Democrat Ned Lamont slammed the Bush administration and his political opponent, Sen. Joe Lieberman, on Wednesday, saying they pushed America into an ill-fated war in Iraq.

"George Bush and Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney and Joe Lieberman rushed us into this war, got our 132,000 troops stuck in a bloody civil war, and they should be held accountable," Lamont said.

Sign the Voters For Peace pledge!

www.unitedforpeace.org

"I will not vote for or support any candidate for Congress or President who does not make a speedy end to the war in Iraq, and preventing any future war of aggression, a public position in his or her campaign."

Last March, the ever-outspoken Molly Ivins wrote that she was fed up with "every calculating, equivocating, triangulating, straddling, hair-splitting son of a bitch" in Washington DC. Denouncing the sparseness of antiwar candidates, she proclaimed, "This is not a time for a candidate who will offend no one. It is time for a candidate who takes clear stands and kicks ass."

Lamont Stars At Activists' Meeting In Washington

By DAVID LIGHTMAN, http://www.courant.com

WASHINGTON -- It's one thing to be the darling of the liberal bloggers; it's another to pull bodies into a room.

Ned Lamont did that Wednesday as 350 progressive activists crammed a hotel meeting room to witness the Senate challenger's first big national appearance.

After basking in three standing ovations before, during and after his nine-minute speech Wednesday, Lamont was asked by his new-found fans to pose for pictures.

No Peace, No Vote: Sign the Voters For Peace Pledge

www.unitedforpeace.org

Last March, the ever-outspoken Molly Ivins wrote that she was fed up with "every calculating, equivocating, triangulating, straddling, hair-splitting son of a bitch" in Washington DC. Denouncing the sparseness of antiwar candidates, she proclaimed, "This is not a time for a candidate who will offend no one. It is time for a candidate who takes clear stands and kicks ass."

Feingold Addresses Group, Criticizes Bush

By Frederic J. Frommer, Associated Press

Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold (news, bio, voting record), a potential 2008 presidential candidate, received a raucous, enthusiastic greeting Wednesday from a liberal group as he criticized President Bush for the Iraq war and a secretive domestic wiretapping program.

The same crowd had booed Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., the presumed 2008 front-runner, a day earlier for opposing a set date for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq.

Democrats get boos, cheers at 2008 audition

Liberal group puts spotlight on Iraq
By George E. Condon Jr., COPLEY NEWS SERVICE

WASHINGTON – Even as President Bush and Republicans celebrated some rare good news from Iraq this week, Democrat's divisions on the war were on display with the front-runner for the 2008 presidential nomination getting booed and some of her challengers fighting to establish themselves as the true champions of the anti-war wing of the party.

A Big Problem for Hillary Clinton: “Premature Triangulation”

By Norman Solomon

Two years from now, Hillary Clinton might be pleased to hear the kind
of boos and antiwar chants that greeted her in mid-June when she spoke at
the annual Take Back America conference of Democratic activists and argued
against a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq. But so much of politics is
about timing. And right now, Clinton is facing a serious problem of
premature triangulation.

Russ Feingold for President?

By Paul Quintanilla

When a new administration finally arrives (if we have a new administration in 2009) it will have a hell of a job reversing the national mood and overall national psyche. That is, if it wants to.

As a rule, new administrations offers some continuance. President Reagan, however, was an exception. He purposefully lunged the country toward the far right. He had a powerful and growing base. And now Bush and his neocon philosophs and business associates have taken the country a step further. There is even speculation today that we may have actually tipped, or are about to tip, into an American form of fascism. Some form of a nativist corporate oligarchy which pretty much runs the show. And it does so with a great deal of fear driven compliance from the American people. George Bush should feel completely at home in such a world.

Rep. Major R. Owens: Sustaining the Counterattack Against the Donocracy

By Rep. Major R. Owens, www.huffingtonpost.com

One negative reaction to "Where Bush Leads In the Polls: The Donocracy," my commentary two weeks ago, was a warning that any money-centered movement risks immediate corruption. Outright pilfering is not feared; it is the power broker role that must be assumed by any entity dispensing funds to worthy candidates. There is fear of a new set of Donor Barons on the left. If the small contributors behave similarly to the passive shareholders of Wall Street corporations this is certainly a legitimate concern. But the campaign budgets of Progressive Advocates are not as complex as the stock market. And the simple arithmetic of political giving does not require investment bankers and hedge funds. Let the process start with the statistics of the constituent population of each congressional district.

Good News: Virginia Democratic Primary Won by Anti-War Candidate

RICHMOND -- James Webb, who worked for President Reagan and later became an outspoken critic of Republican leadership, decisively won Virginia's Democratic Party primary for a seat in the U.S. Senate Tuesday.

Webb, 60, defeated former technology lobbyist Harris Miller and won the right to challenge formidable Republican incumbent Sen. George Allen in the Nov. 7 general election. Allen, a former governor, is considering a 2008 presidential campaign and already has raised $11.6 million for his Senate re-election bid.

When It Comes To Sucking Up To Power, Progressives Are Censors, Too

By Jonathan Tasini
http://www.huffingtonpost.com

I don't know whether to be appalled or just saddened by the blatant act of censorship and strong-armed tactics employed by the so-called progressives of the Campaign for America's Future--tactics that we would deplore if they were used by Republican political operatives.

Yesterday, a few hearty real progressive souls--those not seduced by the need to cater to the powerful--tried to exercise something progressives talk about all the time: free speech.

Feingold Rocks TBA Conference

By David Swanson

Eli Pariser introduced Russ Feingold this morning, who was cheered with "Run, Russ, Run!" as he arrived, and who received four standing ovations just during the introduction and many, many more during his speech. When Pariser mentioned Feingold's vote against the Patriot Act, his vote against the war, and his plan to end the war, the crowd rose and cheered.

Progressive Dems Suppress Anti-War Dissent

Peace Activists at Hillary Clinton's Speech Try to Take Back "Take Back America"
By MEDEA BENJAMIN

The Take Back America conference, an annual event held in Washington DC this year from June 12-14, is supposed to be a venue for prominent progressives to gather and debate the major issues of our day. Their aim is to "provide the nation with new vision, new ideas and new energy." But choosing New York Senator and probable presidential candidate Hillary Clinton as a keynote speaker and then stifling dissent against her pro-war position hardly seems the stuff of a new vision for America.

Clinton receives support from surprising sectors [Assuming you thought she was some sort of democrat]

By JOHN MACHACEK, http://www.thejournalnews.com

WASHINGTON — While she has built a campaign war chest with significant support from small donors, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton has found that help also comes from unlikely places far removed from grass-roots America.

In December, New York City investment banker Jeffrey Volk, a lifelong conservative Republican who worked in the Nixon White House, rounded up some of his like-minded friends to raise more than $100,000 for Clinton at a Scarsdale home.

Ralph Nader: “Americans Need Moral Courage!”

By William Hughes

Baltimore, MD - On Saturday afternoon, June 10, 2006, Ralph Nader, a 3rd Party candidate for the presidency in 2004, spoke at a political rally, held in a conference room at the U. of Baltimore’s Langsdale Library. (1) The primary purpose of the affair was to boost the candidacy of Kevin Zeese, who is running as an Independent candidate for the U.S. Senate in Maryland. In 2004, Zeese served as Nader’s press secretary. (2)

Democrats vying for 8th District blast war, Washington politics

TODD RICHMOND, Associated Press

LA CROSSE, Wis. - A trio of Democrats hoping to win northeastern Wisconsin's open congressional seat blasted Washington politics during speeches at the party's state convention Saturday, accusing Republicans of attacking Americans' quality of life and calling for an end to the war in Iraq.

Steve Kagen, Nancy Nusbaum and Jamie Wall will face off in a Democratic primary in September for the 8th Congressional District seat.

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