Thursday, November 09, 2006

Progressive Update--11/09/2006--Great Job!!!

What a great week for this country. The entire country, liberals and conservatives, Dems, Republicans, Greens, Independents, etc, stood up and said that we do not accept corruption, incompetency, an imperial presidency, the status quo in Iraq, and an administration of lies.

This didn’t happen because the moon was in the right phase; this happened because of the time, talents, and treasure that we provided to many, many campaigns. Great job!!!

The campaign that I worked the most on was John Kowalko’s ( for the 25th Representative District of the Delaware House of Representatives. He beat 12-year incumbent Stephanie Ulbrich, who beat him by 16% in 2004. John, who worked his tail off for two years, beat her by 4%. By the way, you can not find a more progressive candidate (now politician) than John Kowalko. His victory enables the Democratic party to come closer to reclaiming the lead in the Delaware House (we already have the majority in the state Senate).

I will finish with thoughts shared with me yesterday morning by Villanova Political Science professor and all-around nice guy Matt Kerbel, whom many of us heard provide a wonderful analysis in 2004. He frequently provides political analysis for Philly TV and radio stations. It is worth reading and savoring every word, several times:

Some sleep deprived thoughts the morning after. Our democracy works. They tried hard to break it but they couldn't. For all the resources the Republicans had, and for all their dirty tricks and lies, we won a sweeping victory with a governing majority in the House larger than anything the Republicans had during their 12 year run, and a majority of governors and state legislatures that will serve as our talent pool for a generation. When all is said and done, we're going to have the Senate too.

The House majority is large enough to be a governing majority and large enough to endure. A lot of Republicans have never experienced life in the minority. Look for more Republican retirements next cycle leading to more open seat opportunities. Combined with a favorable Senate map the next two rounds, we should be able to keep our majorities for a long time.

I believe this marks the beginning of the end of the Nixon-Reagan-Bush regime that has dominated our politics for two generations. For the first time since the Republicans briefly ran everything in the early 1950s, the governing majority in congress does not include the South. I believe we are seeing the emergence of a progressive governing coalition that will unite the coasts and upper midwest with the libertarian great plains and mountain west. It will take at least two more cycles to consolidate it. But it's starting to come together.

I was very disappointed about Lamont, but let's not forget that it was his primary victory over Lieberman that got DC Democrats to recognize that, you know, people are unhappy about Iraq. Only then did they start talking about it and drawing distinctions with Bush. That nationalized the election and made yesterday possible.

My strongest hope, and my firm belief, is that we will now have the national discussion about Iraq that was denied us by Republican rule. We will have hearings where the architects of this war will be compelled to testify under oath and in public about the way intelligence was manipulated to achieve a political end so that Americans can begin to accept this was an unnecessary war of choice thrust upon us by a corrupt and dishonest leadership. Because until we have the conversation about how we got into Iraq we cannot have the conversation about how to get out. There hasn't been much honesty in government over the past four years. That's about to change.

And as I watched us win across the country last night, vindicating Dean's 50-state strategy, I thought about the doors I knocked on in New Hampshire in 2003, the meetups, and all the grassroots work so many of us have been doing for so long now. You can trace yesterday's victory directly back to the day Howard Dean got up in front of the other presidential candidates in California and asked why his party was afraid to stand up to power. This isn't the end by a long stretch, but it is a turning point.

Paul S Baumbach

Friday, November 03, 2006

Progressive Update--11/03/2006

Click for www.electoral-vote.comClick for

Only four days to go until Election Day on Tuesday the 7th. Please find out how you can help a particular candidate’s campaign over the next few days, or help Delaware’s Democratic Party ( Kristin Dwyer at HQ can provide you with contact information for whatever campaign that you would like to help with, and opportunities for work for the entire party.

John Kowalko for 25th RD State Representative—John’s staging area for volunteers is the UAW complex at 698 Old Baltimore Pike. Since polls open at 7am on Tuesday, poll volunteers are needed at—are you ready?—6:15-6:30am. John is looking for folks, even if they can best handle a two hour shift. The 25th RD has five polling locations. John also needs phone bank volunteers on Tuesday, to call Democrats who have not yet voted. There are shifts from 10:15a-2:30pm and 2-6pm. You can also email John at to ask for other volunteer opportunities.

John Kowalko and other candidates need ‘poll checkers’, folks inside the polling stations who keep track of voting Democrats. This enables campaigns to call Dems who have not yet voted later in the day. To do this, you will need to go through training, which is on Saturday at 6pm at Del Dems HQ at 19 E. Commons Blvd, 2nd Floor, New Castle, DE 19720, (302) 328-9036, near the News Journal building near Basin Road.

Dennis Spivack for US House of Representatives—I am certain that they need volunteers, however I did not get information from them. For such information, contact Glenn Shipley at, 153 E Chestnut Hill Rd, Suite 104, Newark, 302-479-7748

Beau Biden for DE Attorney General—Contact Sarah Gallagher at or cell phone 302.545.4365 if you can help. There are lit drops on Saturday from 9a-1p, and 1-5pm, also on Sunday at the same times. There is door-hanger hanging on Monday at 5:30pm, and a need for volunteers for 4 hour shifts on Tuesday. Biden HQ is at 918 S Madison St, Wilmington, at the Riverfront Shipyard Shops.

MoveOn has phone volunteer opportunities that Karen, a friend of mine, says is really snazzy. Go to for more information.

Donate—It is not too late to donate to your favorite candidates. Last minute contributions can help with last minute advertisements and phone banking. In addition to supporting Delaware candidates, consider helping Tester (Montana), McCaskill (Missouri), and Webb (Virginia). In each of these US Senate races, the Democrat is currently within 3 percentage points of the Republican candidate.

Yellow Dog Democrats—I recently heard this phrase as describing folks who would vote for a yellow dog who is a Democrat over a nice person who is a Republican. I can understand how this can be intended as an insult, however I feel that six years of W has effectively turned me into a proud Yellow Dog Democrat. To those who look down their noses at such partisan hacks such as me, I would point to the White House. How many moderate Democrats up for re-election is Dictator Bush helping to campaign? W, Rove, Cheney, Frist, Hastert and other have created this extremely divisive environment. Hastert and others covered up sexual abuse of Republican Rep Mark Foley, following the past lead of the Catholic Church (see no evil, …). Rep Castle and other Republicans backed a House rules change that would permit Republican Rep Tom Delay to remain Speaker despite his indictments of campaign finance lawbreaking. Republicans have circled their wagons tightly for six years. It is time to reap what you sow.

No honest Republican can fault Yellow Dog Democrats this year. Actually many Republicans are deserting the party in droves (either as candidates who are running as Democrats, or as voters who support new and old Democrats and reject today’s corrupt Republicans), as they recognize that the current Republican party has lost all moral direction and fiscal responsibility.

Keeping Track—I re-discovered the website, which does a wonderful job of keeping up with the surveys and projecting results (current results is 49/49 with 2 unknown in the Senate, and a whopping 241 Dems 193 Rep’s, and 1 Tie in the House, for a unbelievable pickup of something like 38 seats in the House by the Dems. Remember that the Republicans have been gerrymandering the districts and still are losing 9% of their House seats—what a revolt! Karl, how are you going to spin this?

Paul S Baumbach

Go to my blog at for all of my past postings. I learned this week that the ultra-conservative folks at WDEL (on the ‘right side of issues’) and in Ulbrich’s campaign are reading my blog—I am honored. Read on—you might actually learn something, such as how fed up people are with commentators and professional politicians who have no idea how government can serve people.