Friday, March 24, 2006

Tri-Valley Dem club candidates forum

A couple of folks have asked me how the forum went so I thought I would list my notes on each candidate.


A.J. Carillo took on tough duty while substituting for Jerry due to a death in Jerry's family

  • Jerry is a "Barbara Boxer Democrat"
  • responding to a question about what his first authored bill would be if elected:
    "support John Murtha's bill on withdrawl from Iraq"
  • CA-11 should not pursue an "electibility strategy" - sited the 2004 John Kerry strategy
  • reiterated Jerry's vision for CA-11 to become the world leader in renewable energy businesses and technology (I REALLY like this by the way - it is a big vision but it's really worth some attention)


Basically delivered an amplified version of his remarks from the Lamorinda event

  • he effectively stepped up the pitch and in one moment he said we need to "kick ass"
  • responding to a question about what his first authored bill would be if elected: "fix our Delta Levee problems"
  • turned his "impeachment" frame into "censure" (good for him)
  • he ran out of time and only enumerated 2 of his 5 key platform items: 1. terrorism 2. economic bill of rights (I really wish he would have returned to this in a subsequent answer)
  • spoke about and handed out flyers on how a Bob Casey Jr candidacy is bad because he is a pro-lifer (I respectfully disagree - I've met Bob Casey Jr. and no matter how much I disagree with him on that issue, he's the only one who has any shot at beating Santorum)


Stepped up his tone and pitch somewhat but essentially delivered much of the same content as the Lamorinda event

  • Noted that the current GOP'ers think its "every man for himself" and Democrats know that we're all in this together
  • responding to a question about what his first authored bill would be if elected:
    "transportation bill for the district" mentioned I-205.
  • went on the offensive and said that in the 2004 election 30,000 voted for Boxer while at the same time voted for Pombo
  • spoke effectively about ESA and "critical habitats"
  • re-iterated several times that "the time is now" to win this race - a real sense of urgency came across


At 4:21 AM, Blogger NEPA TOM said...

Someone's not really paying attention . . . .

IN PENNSYLVANIA the polls do NOT show Casey to be the only Dem candidate who can beat Santorum.

Casey is leading Santorum, but that lead is extremely soft. Over 30% of the pro-Casey respondents in polls regularly say that they don't know enough about Casey and/or they have a neutral/negative view of him.

This means that nearly a third of his support is merely anti-Santorum. Most of the balance of his support is merely name recognition -- as the Quinnipiac and Zogby polls bear out.

This kind of weak support has been responsible for Casey's previous historic lost leads. In the Dem gubernatorial primary, Casey had a double-digit lead late in the primary. He lost to Ed Rendell by 12 points. The same trend is showing in this race.

In Quinnipiac's December Poll, Casey's double-digit lead devolved to a statistical tie with Santorum when Casey supporters were told that Casey was in favor of banning abortion and overturning Roe v Wade (which he is).

And this was on only ONE of the major issues of the day.

When voters learn that Casey is also supporting Bush policies on Iraq, stem-cell research, the death penalty, Alito, universal health care, the living wage issue, and others, Casey actually polls weakest against Santorum than either of his Dem opponents.

Unlike Casey, his opponents, particularly Dr. Chuck Pennacchio, a history professor and foreign policy expert, are progressive Democrats who support traditional Democratic issues and values. Unlike Casey, Pennacchio and Sandals endorse policies that align with the majority of Pennsylvania voters.

It is unfair and uninformed to say that Casey is the only shot at beating Santorum.

It is unfair and uninformed to imply that opposition to Casey is "merely" because of Casey's anti-abortion positions.

By opposing Casey, we are seeking a candidate who can actually win in November.

Casey was selected (by NY Sen Chuck Schumer) based on his name recognition and money raising ability.

This is the same tired formula which PA Dems have used for 44 years to select their Senatorial candidates.

This strategy has resulted in 14 CONSECUTIVE full-term Senate race losses in Pennsylvania.

Backing Casey is employing this same losing strategy and expecting a different result.

At 11:26 AM, Blogger brian said...

Tom, I really appreciate your comments. Admittedly, I'm not following the PA Senate race too closely because I'm focused on kicking my GOP congressman out of office. Since I'm a native of Kingston, PA, I've monitored the PA-Sen race from afar with interest.

On policy issues, I align more with Pennachio than Casey. If, by some magic, I could give Pennachio Bob Casey's name recognition, his campaign warchest, and his favorable poll numbers, I would do so.

In lieu of magic, we must all make choices. I've made my choice, and I surely respect yours. For me, at the end of the day, Santorum must go. I simply feel like Casey can make that happen.

I know things can change drastically in 7 months and any of the factors mentioned above can be turned on their head. So, I'm happy to continue a dialogue with you since you're so invested and informed. Feel free to shoot me developing info if you are so inclined.

A former nepa'er

Oh yeah, do you think comparing Santorum v. Casey and Rendell v. Casey is a little apples to oragneish? (Dem v. Dem in a primary and a host of other factors such as Rendell's Philly base)


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