Sunday, December 04, 2005

Why is the Democratic Party Recruiting Republicans?

I received this email from an Old Friend. I wonder if we could put up a bat and raise money for this people-powered-candidate?

Thanks Freespirit for the heads up.

The following is a description of a 16th Congressional Democratic candidate forum which took place recently in Highland County, Fl. Carol McLean is the candidate describing the event:


On Saturday, September 17th, I attended a meeting of the Democratic Club of Highland County, Florida. It was a "Meet the Candidates" night. There were candidates and representatives from several races, but the key one was the race for US Congress Florida District #16 (against Republican incumbent, Mark Foley). All three Democratic candidates for the race were there in person: David Lutrin, Tim Mahoney, and me, Carol McLean. The meeting hall was in Sebring, in the center of Florida. It was a 125 mile drive each direction. This is an awfully big district! It was mostly senior citizens with about 125 in attendance.

David Lutrin was the first of the three of us to speak in my race. He is a schoolteacher in Palm Beach County - a good, decent, family man who came with his wife and daughter. We have a good relationship, and have vowed to make our goal getting "the interloper" out of the race altogether. Then, when the race will be just between the two of us, it will be based on the issues. We have the same slant on the issues, so it will really be a matter of personalities. He's very poised and professional. He had written a very eloquent speech that summed up his position very well, and was interrupted several times by applause.

Then Tim Mahoney stepped up to the mike. He was dressed in blue jeans, a cowboy shirt, and a huge cowboy hat. ("Get yourself an outfit, you can be a cowboy too") Evidently, he thought this would make him fit in with the people in the room. He was just so folksy and cowpokey, although he is from New Jersey. He had no prepared speech, but just sort of rambled on about why he boughta ranch in Highland county. He said that he had bought a painting of a pastoral scene, and because it was such an expensive painting, he was entitled to contact the artist and ask questions. So he called and asked the location - it was Venus in Highland County. He drove up here while attending a funeral, saw the same lovely landscape, and immediately bought 100 acres.

He went on to tell us that his life plan was to make all of his money during ages 20-50. He has several internet finance and investments, he is almost 50, his plan is to get involved in politics. He said that 7 weeks ago he got a call from Washington DC and they asked him to run for office. The DCCC spent a lot of time wooing him, although he was a registered Republican. And while standing there in DC with the capitol in the background he felt that this would be an awesome undertaking. He was very concerned about the difference between the "haves" and the "have not"s and wanted to help that situation. The speech was boring and lack luster.

Then it was my turn. I started out by introducing myself as one of the "have not"s that he just spoke about. I pointed out that the difference between him and me was that, when I saw a lovely pastoral scene I'd just take a snapshot of...I did not buy up 1/4 of the town.

And the starting gun was fired!

Then I said that I too had gotten a call from DC, as did David Lutrin, about the election. However, it wasn't to ask me to run - it was to ask me to drop out. When I inquired why, they told me that they already had a good candidate (Mahoney) who had $2 million to put into his campaign. They asked me how much I had. Well, if I counted the $5 McDonalds coupon in my wallet, it came to exact $13. I was going to raise my funds by grassroots. They scoffed that off, and told me they would not back me. Fine! However, as a person who has been a member of the Democratic Party longer than Mahoney's seven weeks, I was still going to run - with or without them. I added that I was unaware that the elections were limited to only rich candidates. Congress is already filled with rich, good old boys …. And they've gotten us to where we are today. Perhaps its time to vote in the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker ….. and the teacher.

I turned to David Lutrin who was beaming at this point, and said, you people know that Mr. Lutrin and I are both teachers. You know how we earn our money,and you know how much we make. I don't know what internet finance is, but I know that mainstream America doesn't have millions, and that these rich good old boys are so far detached from mainstream America that they have no idea how we live.

I pointed out that I had mainstream America experience as a teacher - with overcrowded classrooms, no text books, working around the flawed FCAT, with low pay, and poor insurance. And when the school board couldn't find Americans to work under those conditions, the good old boys went over to the Philippines and hired them, to teach in our Palm Beach classrooms. Out-sourcing with a hometown touch!

I have a son in college and watched the Stafford Loan interest rate double over this summer, while the number of families qualifying for the Pell Grant dropped radically, and the costs of tuition housing and books soars. The rich good old boys raised rates and dropped assistance.

I live in Hurricane Central and still have people in my neighborhood with blue tarps. FEMA paid nothing to anyone on my block, even though a tornado removed everyone's patios and dumped them somewhere in Wisconsin … but not a dime from FEMA. The mind-boggling part is that the people in Miami, who never came NEAR a hurricane, got $31 million, while the people in Punta Gorda, which was virtually destroyed by Charlie have been asked to repay "overpayments". I might add at this time Michael "one-heck-of-a-job-Brownie" Brown was head of FEMA. Who holds FEMA accountable? I will demand that they become accountable to the people.

I had a child with brain cancer and the resulting overwhelming bills. He was one of six critically ill children I brought over from Tonga. My church and the Shriners paid for their surgery, while I housed them in my home, fed, and clothed them for over 4 years. I've made those decisions to choose between medicine and the mortgage, cat scans and the credit cards. I know about hospital expenses that push you into bankruptcy, but the rich good old boys in Congress have now made it impossible for most people with serious medical bills to declare bankruptcy.

I am a small business owner and knew about big business trying to push us out. As a small business, we have no health insurance, and that premiums, even if we were eligible, are over $1600 per month per person. My health policy is "Don't get sick"

I am in fear of this new eminent domain ruling. I live in a tract house on a golf course on a lake, and already the greedy rich developers are eyeing the houses in my neighborhood professing that they could put up condos and a strip mall and bring the town more tax money. The people in Highland country have beautiful, rolling farmland, but the rich good old boys (Exhibit A being Candidate Mahoney) are coming up and buying up the land so they can have a ranch-toy too. And now, when their rich buddies come visit, they eye all this land and think - malls, condos, housing projects, Walmart……..MORE MONEY!!

This country has serious problems - and we need serious people, who understand mainstream America, to solve them.

The debacle of Hurricane Katrina - and now putting the restoration of the city in the hands of Karl Rove. Isn't he better known for destroying lives, rather than rebuilding them. It that isn't the epitome of cronyism - its not even sane!

FEMA. We want accountability and rapid response.

We have this Avian Flu headed for us this winter. It is a newly mutated virus and no one has any immunity. We have no vaccine for it, and won't until 6 months after the virus hits. It has a very high mortality factor, worse than the Spanish flu of 1918 that killed 25% of New England in a 3-month period. Onlyone place in the world makes the antibiotic to control it., and they distribute it on a first come- first served basis. They are filling the orders for the other countries who cared enough about their people to actually order the medicine. The US is at the bottom of the list for the protocol because Mr.Bush failed to get in line. England now has enough for 25% of its population, Australia has enough for its entire population, but Bush failed to get in line. We have at the most 2 million doses. My guess is that Mr. Bush and the rich good old boys get those doses.

The rich good old boys passed CAFTA to outsource our jobs to Central and South America. They have us import our food from Mexico, why won't they let us import our medicines from Canada? ….Because the rich good old boys run the pharmaceutical companies.

Our senior veterans and new vets have been violated by the cutbacks in the funding of the VA. A country that sends it boys and girls to serve their country in battle, then walks away from them when they are wounded, is a disgrace. But the rich good old boys in Halliburton are making a lot of money from this war.

The War in Iraq is...(I fumbled for words, then blurted out)...stupid. (Big cheer) We need our soldiers here guarding OUR borders, OUR airports, OUR ports and saving OUR people. The Iraqis are going to have to take care of themselves. The Saudis say they are our friends. Let them send their soldiers to protect their good neighbor Iraq. Let's bring our soliders home!

Healthcare - we need a national healthcare system - take the money from 2 weeks of the war and it could fund the entire thing.

If we don't clean out Congress - get rid of the rich good old boys and replace them with the butcher the baker and the candlestick maker...and the teacher, - then we are headed for disaster. We need to take back the House and Senate in 2006. In 2008 we take back the White House. Then we can reverse the laws passed by these rich and self-serving good old boys and take our country back.

I was interrupted several times by applause and got a lot of pats on the back as I took my seat. David Lutrin came over and gave me a big hug. His wife came over and said, "If I didn't have to vote for my husband, I'd vote for you!" The people at my table all asked where they could send donations (I had flyers and envelopes all printed up and ready to distribute).

Through my entire speech, Candidate Mahoney just sat there with his head bowed. I said nothing to him. But at the end of the meeting he went over to Candidate David Lutrin and said, "God, she crucified me! But I guess I should have expected it."

My guess is that I am going to get some calls from Mahoney, the DCCC, and the Florida Democratic Party tomorrow. This ought to be interesting!

Alternate link for comments