Tag: Endorsement

Some Uncompensated Endorsements

After picking up Nat from a hangout with a friend, and on the way home, I picked up a snack from Habib Mediterranean Market and Cafe, a nice spinach and cheese pie. 

The kids got some very nice stuffed grape leaves and some za’atar spiced fries. Additionally, I got a bottle of a very nice non-alcoholic malt beverage made in Dubai, UAE, Barbican

Unlike many near-beers, it is not too sweet, and not too malty, and lightly hopped, which makes for an easy drink when one wants to cool down a hot day.

Annointed by Chuck Schumer

Deer, meet headlights

And flailing horribly in the primary.

Shumer’s “Great White Hopes” of the US Senate races this year are Amy McGrath in Kentucky and John Hickenlooper in Colorado, and things are not going well fore either of them.

Amy McGrath, who has a compelling life story but little in the way of policy, has had a terrible horrible no good very bad week.

The largest papers in the state endorsed her primary opponent Charles Booker, as has Alison Lundergan Grimes, who is part of the Democratic Party aristocracy in the state. (Useless, but all aristocracy is useless)

I’m thinking that her deer in the headlights performance when asked about police protests in the last debate which was lame beyond belief: (See vid)

Remember Amy McGrath? Maybe you do. In 2018, the Kentucky Democrat was briefly famous for a viral campaign ad and an ultimately doomed campaign to represent her state’s Sixth Congressional District. A moderate and a former Marine fighter pilot, McGrath is the apotheosis of a particular Democratic electoral strategy: to win in a conservative state, dispatch a veteran with lukewarm politics. That strategy didn’t put McGrath in the House in 2018. But two years later, Senate Democrats tried it again, pitting McGrath against a top prize: Mitch McConnell.

Now she might be lucky to win her primary race.

McGrath faces a robust challenge from Charles Booker, the youngest Black legislator in the Kentucky House of Representatives. Booker has run to her left, and while McGrath holds a major fundraising advantage, Booker is gaining significant momentum ahead of the primary on June 23. Two of the state’s largest newspapers have endorsed him, and on Tuesday, Booker earned another major supporter. Alison Lundergan Grimes, who challenged McConnell in 2014, endorsed him over McGrath.

Proud to endorse my friend @Booker4KY for U.S. Senate in the Kentucky Democratic Primary! Together, let’s elect a new generation of leadership in KY! #Booker4KY https://t.co/mv7TymBLIe pic.twitter.com/PsD43HrcEt

— Alison Lundergan Grimes (@AlisonForKY) June 16, 2020

The Grimes endorsement might be the clearest sign yet that McGrath is in real trouble. Booker already had the backing of a number of progressive politicians and groups, including Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, but Grimes is no leftist. She’s firmly part of the Kentucky Democratic Establishment, which makes her endorsement something of a surprise — and an unignorable vote of no confidence in McGrath. The retired Marine is backed by the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee, but locals are less convinced.

Also, Booker progressive icon Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) just endorsed Booker as well.

Her life story failed to defeat a vulnerable Republican Representative in the last election, and she has added nothing to her toolbox.

And then there is John Hickenlooper in Colorado, whose campaign is turning into a horror show, even if you ignore the fact that he literally drank a glass of fracking fluid to demonstrate his support for the fossil fuel industry.

Now, in addition to his record, we have his his being fined for serious ethical violations as well as having made jokes about slavery, both of which are EXTREMELY problematic in the current moment:

Democrats’ best pickup opportunity in their battle for the majority in the U.S. Senate has suddenly been complicated by not one but two unforced errors from their star candidate in Colorado, former governor John Hickenlooper. But it’s not clear whether either or both are enough to turn the tide of the race in favor of Republicans. The two controversies:

  1. An independent ethics commission in Colorado said Hickenlooper violated state law on gifts when he was governor in 2018 by accepting rides on a private jet and, separately, in a Maserati limousine.
  2. He appeared to compare a job as a political scheduler to the slave trade, in 2014 comments that were unearthed Monday. His campaign immediately apologized for them. “Imagine an ancient slave ship,” he said, “with the guy with the whip, and you’re rowing. We elected officials are the ones that are rowing.”


The first controversy carries a more immediate impact for Hickenlooper. The commission, which was set up as part of an anti-graft law Colorado voters approved more than a decade ago, fined him almost $3,000 for the luxury rides as he was traveling as governor. The commission also held him in contempt for not showing up for the first day of video hearings even though he was subpoenaed.


Hickenlooper’s most immediate contest is a June 30 primary. He’s facing Andrew Romanoff, a former Colorado House speaker, who has his supporters but is not seen as a major threat to Hickenlooper. Romanoff is campaigning on Hickenlooper’s left in support of Medicare-for-all and the Green New Deal and has the support of some younger, liberal activists. (But no endorsement from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) or his liberal allies in Congress.)

That may still be the case, given how late Hickenlooper’s ethics violation is coming in the primary and how much Hickenlooper has been billed as the best candidate to beat Gardner among Democrats. Romanoff is trying to leverage Hickenlooper’s ethics troubles to reverse that narrative. “He represents a threat we cannot afford,” Romanoff told The Washington Post recently.

I am not sure how much Romanoff is a long shot. Romanoff won the Democratic Party endorsement at the state convention, though that does not count for much in the primary.

Still, this raises serious questions about Hickenlooper’s electability, which is really the only reason to vote for him, because, as I have noted before, he literally drank a glass of fracking fluid to demonstrate his support for the fossil fuel industry.

Times Endorses Jamaal Bowman

The New York Times just announced its Congressional endorsements, and they just endorsed Jamaal Bowman over incumbent Eliot Engel:


DISTRICT 16 (northern parts of the Bronx and southern half of Westchester County, including Mt. Vernon, Yonkers, New Rochelle and Rye): The current representative — Eliot Engel — has been in Congress since 1989, and his connections to the district seem to have frayed.

He was criticized for not returning home even as the coronavirus raged through communities he represents, particularly New Rochelle. When he did return for this race, he was caught on a hot mic pushing for a chance to speak during a protest rally, saying, “If I didn’t have a primary, I wouldn’t care.”

His main challenger is Jamaal Bowman, an educator for more than 20 years and a fierce advocate for public schools. Mr. Bowman helped found a public middle school in the Bronx, the Cornerstone Academy for Social Action, and promises to work for all of the district, including sections he says have been neglected during Mr. Engel’s time in Congress.

Mr. Bowman says he wants to see the United States adopt a kind of Marshall Plan for climate change, jobs, housing and education. “We need political imagination,” he said. In a district that needs new energy, Mr. Bowman will bring it.

I’m beginning to think that Bowman is less of a long shot than I thought when I wrote about this 11 days ago.

It’s important to remember that primary challenges are important even when they fail, and a relatively low success rate is a given.

Dan Lipinski has already been taken out this election cycle, and if Engel is taken down, it will put fear in the hearts of a lot of Democratic Party incumbents.


H/T Diane Ravitch.

No Endorsement, Uncle Joe

Democratic Socialists of America, (DSA) has declined to endorse Joe Biden for President.

Given Biden’s long history of sucking up to banks, racists, and sexual harassers, and the carceral state, this should surprise no one.

Political organizations do not vote, and, “But Donald Trump,” is not a reason to contradict one’s stated values.

Of course, this non-endorsement will be used to blame the left, when Biden loses, because an honest account of the incompetence and corruption of the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) would result in too many nepotism hires having to find honest work.

Following the withdrawal of Bernie Sanders from the presidential race, our country has lost the only viable Presidential candidate advocating the comprehensive reform we need to address this pandemic head-on. Sanders’s exit leaves Joe Biden as the presumptive Democratic nominee for president. His differences with Sanders and the broader left could not be starker, as was recently made clear when he committed to vetoing Medicare for All, Sanders’s signature legislative priority. Biden’s recent, disgraceful embrace of anti-Chinese xenophobia in his general election campaign, and credible allegations against him, are dangerous examples of how corporate Democrats continue to fail at stopping the ugly advance of far-right politics, racism, and misogyny.

The Democratic Socialists of America will not be endorsing Biden. We fully agree with Senator Sanders that taking on the reactionary, racist, and nationalist right wing represented by Donald Trump is imperative for the survival of millions of working-class people across the country and the world. We believe that the only way to beat the radical right once and for all is through a socialist movement that draws millions of disillusioned working-class people, here and abroad, into the political arena. We will continue to welcome the millions of people who supported Bernie’s platform and are looking for a political home.

We also recognize this moment to strategically strengthen our movements and power.  We will fight like hell against the Trump agenda by running pressure campaigns, engaging in mutual aid, helping to build strong, democratic unions, building coalitions with those organizing against capitalism, acting in solidarity with immigrants and incarcerated people against deportation and detention, working to protect tenants and unhoused people, organizing to expand voting rights, locations, and the right to vote by mail. We will demand COVID relief that addresses inequality through a lens of reparations, push for an end to sanctions that are killing millions and fuel militarism in many parts of the world, and will back democratic socialist candidates at the grassroots level. That’s because we know that politics does not begin every four years with a national election: when we get organized, we become the agents of the change that will win the better world the working class desires and deserves.

Were the DSA to engage in obvious hypocrisy by endorsing Biden, it would damage the DSA, and Biden would get nothing from it.

“Vote for the slightly less awful rapist,” is a political strategy that would destroy DSA.

Clearly, Bernie Sanders Cannot Appeal to Black Voters

Cornel West has just endorsed Bernie Sanders:

In an interview with The Intercept published Thursday, philosopher Cornel West endorsed Bernie Sanders’ bid for the White House.

West, who endorsed Sanders in 2016 and campaigned for him, explained that the Vermont senator fulfils “Martin Luther King-like” criteria when it comes to issues of race, war, materialism, and poverty.

“And this is the first time I’ve had a chance to publicly endorse him again, but yes, indeed. I’ll be in his corner that we’re going to win this time,” he said, adding, “my dear brother Bernie stands shoulders above any of the other candidates running in the Democratic primary when it comes to that Martin Luther King-like standards or criteria.”

Bernie Sanders is often accused by his opponents — despite his activist past and lifelong dedication to civil rights — of having a “problem” with black voters. But according to Cornel West that will be a non-issue in 2020.

In 2016 Sanders was facing two major issues: The “Clinton machine” and lack of name recognition. Since then, African Americans have “had the chance to discover” who Bernie Sanders really is, according to the philosopher, and this is now reflected in the polls.

I find the endorsement a big over the top (“Martin Luther King-like standards”), but considering the alternatives, his endorsement is not surprising.

NYT Endorses Zephyr Teachout for AG

Given the generally pro-corporate bent of the Gray Lady, their endorsement is a surprise:

The most important choice facing New York voters this fall is whom they will pick as their next state attorney general. The office could be the last line of defense against an antidemocratic president, a federal government indifferent to environmental and consumer protection and a state government in which ethics can seem a mere inconvenience.

Even in the best of times the office plays a critical role, policing fraud on Wall Street and ensuring enforcement of state and federal laws, from regulating the financial system to preventing employment discrimination. Its influence is felt across the nation.

These are not the best of times. With the right leadership, the office could serve as a firewall if President Trump pardons senior aides, dismisses the special counsel, Robert Mueller, or attacks the foundations of state power. Only a handful of American institutions are equipped to resist such assaults on constitutional authority, and the New York attorney general’s office, with 650 lawyers and a history of muscular law enforcement, is one of them.

The next attorney general will have a full docket in New York as well. Albany has long been a chamber of ethical horrors. In March, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s former senior aide Joseph Percoco was convicted on corruption charges. In May, former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a Democrat, was also convicted of corruption. In July, the former Republican Senate majority leader, Dean Skelos, was convicted of bribery, extortion and conspiracy. Prosecutors said he used his office to pressure businesses to pay his son $300,000 for no-show jobs. The same month, Alain Kaloyeros, a key figure behind Mr. Cuomo’s “Buffalo Billion” economic initiative, was convicted in a bid-rigging scheme.


From a refreshingly strong field competing in the Democratic primary, to be held on Sept. 13, the best candidate is Zephyr Teachout, an independent-minded lawyer unusually well prepared to curb abuses of power and restore integrity and pride to this office. Ms. Teachout waged a strong primary challenge against Mr. Cuomo four years ago, lending her additional credibility and distance from a governor who remains all too cozy with the donors, contractors, union leaders and influence peddlers who dominate Albany and beyond.


New York needs a great lawyer. We believe that Democrats who are seeking a means of standing up to the Trump presidency and graft in Albany can find in Ms. Teachout their most effective champion for democracy and civil rights, good government and the environment, workers’ rights, fair housing and gender equality.

(emphasis mine)

I think that part of the reason for this endorsement is the above not-so-subtle diss of Cuomo as well.

I think that if Teachout ends up AG, she will have a remarkably hostile relationship with the Governor, and that’s a good thing.

Where I Endorse a Company That I Try to Avoid

It’s an auto body shop, and so it’s not a place where you want to go unless you have to.

Who wants to be rear-ended by some inattentive bloke in a Ford, but if you do I highly recommend Iggy’s Auto Body.

He is competent, timely, and above all, honest.

(on edit)

Contact information:
Iggy’s Auto Body
2929 Industrial Park Dr., # N
Finksburg, Maryland 21048

Phone    (410) 526-2900