Random thoughts and insights – always shaken, never stirred

Posts Tagged ‘2004 Election

McConnell and Dole

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Fox is calling the Kentucky senate race for McConnell.

That’s huge.

At the same time, Dole is apparently going down in North Carolina.

That’s huge too.

Written by martinipundit

November 4, 2008 at 8:09 pm

Posted in 2008 Election, Politics

Tagged with ,

Stoneless Story – The Ellen Goodman Version

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Well, it seems the “Jill Carroll abused by right-wing bloggers” theme is developing into an outright meme. At least that’s the case when a well-known columnist like Ellen Goodman stoops to outright duplicity. (Or sleight of hand, your call.) In this column from the Boston Globe, she moralizes that “Bloggers owe Jill Carroll an apology.”

Do they? This one surely does not, and I’ll stack up my rightwing credentials next to anybody’s. I never wrote a word about Jill Carroll’s release before this week, and nothing that was derogatory. I do find this latest (jealous) attack on the blogosphere to be more than a little farfetched. Let’s take a look:

Remember when a former CBS executive described bloggers as guys in pajamas writing in their living rooms? Well, it seems that many have only one exercise routine: jumping to conclusions.

Starting out by repeating a gratuitous slur is particularly silly when one recalls that the blogosphere was right and the CBS executive wrong. Just like him, Goodman attempts to denigrate that which she can’t refute.

However, unlike the last time we looked at this, Goodman does at least name some names:

The printouts on my desk describe the 28-year-old journalist, a hostage and victim for 82 terrifying days, as something between Patty Hearst and Baghdad Jane, between a traitor and ”Princess Jill.” TBone posted a potshot, calling Carroll ”a liar” and the kidnapping ”a total scam.” PA Pundits said that ”I still just can’t get past her being (for the most part) unharmed.” And Debbie Schlussel called her a ”spoiled brat America-hater.”

At first, the only name I even recognized was Debbie Schlussel, whom I tend to lump in with the fringe, but if she wants to count her, OK. She’s not A-list, but she’s known. And she seems to be examining Carroll’s views and motivations from a reporter’s perspective – I’m not sure what’s wrong with that unless Ellen Goodman somehow believes reporters are above such questions.

But the other two blogs are a stretch (and let’s note they come first). I went looking and found the TBone story and the PAPundits piece. Like I said, I’d never heard of these guys, but wow, what a scoop!

TBone is a blog about fifteen months old that averages around 800 hits a month. No shame there, this blog doesn’t do that much better. He’s skeptical about the story, and that’s all. Hardly a representative of the blogosphere. So I then looked at PAPundits and find they’ve been around less time – since September 2005 – and they’re bigger, averaging better than 8600 hits a month. Goodman doesn’t even bother, however to quote them honestly. Here’s what she quotes:

I still just can’t get past her being (for the most part) unharmed.

(Harsh words indeed.) And here’s what they actually say:

For everyone out there that is whining about how mistreated Jill Carroll has been by the blogs, I say — Fah! — .

The basic fundimental question of why she was released has not been answered. Until we get some answers as to why she was released, pretty much unharmed, after her kidnappers didn’t get what they wanted …

It just doesn’t add up to me, but then I am a distrusting soul.

I really couldn’t care less about the anti-american remarks she made shortly after her release. That really doesn’t phase me and I am willing to let that go. Her remarks in Germany pretty much cancel out her comments anyway.

I still just can’t get past her being (for the most part) unharmed.

Don’t get me wrong, I am HAPPY she’s is fine, I am HAPPY she is alive and free. I just don’t understand why her captors chose to do what they did.

He thinks there’s something fishy about it – maybe there is. I don’t know, and I’m sure Ellen Goodman doesn’t either.

But that’s all she’s got, two bloggers (I don’t count Schlussel), one tiny, one modest. Of course, there’s no story there (not to mention no links; I had to Google them.) So she resorts to this subterfuge:

The political bloggers first flexed their muscle in 2002 when they trumped the MSM — blogspeak for Mainstream Media — by forcing Trent Lott out of the Senate speakership after he toasted the good old segregated days of Strom Thurmond. In 2004, they proved the power of the Internet as a great equalizer when they confronted the house of CBS and Dan Rather over Bush’s military records.

Two years later, we have — ready, fire, aim — the Jill Carroll affair. These attacks raise the question of what bloggery is going to be when it grows up. An Internet op-ed page? Or a polarized, talk-radio food fight?

One must marvel at the chutzpah. It works on at least two levels. First, conflating the injustice of attacking Jill Carroll with the CBS forgeries. I agree that all the evidence suggests that Jill Carroll got lucky and she should be left alone. However, despite Ms. Goodman’s attempt to place Dan Rather and CBS in the same category, it just doesn’t work.

This wasn’t about “Bush’s military records.” This was about Dan Rather and CBS news knowingly using forgeries to attempt to slander a sitting Presidnet of the United States and influence the outcome of an election. This was despicable behavior and Dan Rather, Mary Mapes, and others lost their jobs over it. This simply doesn’t compare to Jill Carroll.

Secondly, the idea that bloggers such as TBone and PAPundits are the ones responsible for the Rather takedown (or Lott’s) is equally ridiculous. It was people like Captain’s Quarters, Hugh Hewitt, Instapundit, INDC Journal, many others I’ve forgotten, but most of all Power Line. These are the big blogs, the influential blogs. These are the blogs that collectively receive hundreds of thousands of hits a month. These are the ones that took down Dan Rather, and these are the ones that matter in the Jill Carroll story. And they aren’t attacking her which Goodman must know, otherwise she’d have cited them instead of small fry. Of course, then she wouldn’t be able to say silly things like this:

The difference between old media and new, MSM and blog, says Al Tompkins of the Poynter Institute, is the difference between sitting at a restaurant and having your food delivered nicely plated or standing at a buffet nibbling constantly. It’s the 24/7 news cycle brought down to the 604,800 seconds-per-week cycle.\nIn the wake of the Carroll story, a few — far too few — bloggers stopped stocking the buffet long enough to eat their words. But this case provides a juncture for bloggers who want a respected role in the public debate.

Of course, this straw man is knocked down just by the bloggers Goodman cites.

Ellen Goodman has written a scurrilous attack piece. It’s as bad as anything she ‘accuses’ bloggers of doing, worse given its intellectual dishonesty, and for reasons which she only knows but others can guess at. Might they have something to do with the Globe’s financial and circulation woes?

Written by martinipundit

April 7, 2006 at 12:00 pm

Straw, Grasp II

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This one is bizarre.  Now the Kerry Blog is darkly hinting at a coincidence between the Bush Administration and the Snakehead fish in the Potomac:

Can it be just a coincidence that the rapacious northern snakehead has taken up residence in the Potomac River during the reign of George Bush? The snakehead is a peculiarly fitting fishy symbol for an administration that has wreaked such havoc on the country’s environment.

Kerry should recall an old friend of his – the former Governor of Massachusetts – who in his ill-fated bid for president referred to a sitting President as a “fish, rotting from the head down.” That liberal from Massachusetts was defeated by George Bush the Elder.  Maybe Kerry’s blog should be looking for another analogy.

Written by martinipundit

June 30, 2004 at 4:48 pm

Can the Liberals Explain This?

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Can those on the left explain this? And will John Kerry denounce it?

via Instapundit among others …


None of the readers here have seen fit to answer the question, but Junkyard Blog takes liberals to task on this.  I cannot ever remember anything like this being published in the National Review or the Weekly Standard on Clinton’s watch. 

So why do you hate the guy? Is it just because he’s proving how useless your politicies are, and how useless your hero Wild Bill was against terrorism? What is it? And why do you people feel the need to ratchet up the hate minute by minute?

You’re taking yourselves and our country down a very dangerous road.

Written by martinipundit

June 29, 2004 at 10:33 pm

Keep them Sealed

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Drudge is reporting that some are contemplating seeking to unseal John Kerry’s sealed divorce records.

My view here is simple: don’t.

I didn’t think Jack Ryan’s records should be unsealed, but once they were, I couldn’t find anything in them to cause him to drop out of the race.  But he did, and that’s history. There is relevance to Kerry’s public record: his service in Vietnam, his anti-war activities, his activities in elective office.  Those things are fair game (whether he thinks so or not), but a divorce that took place more than a decade ago is just not relevant to a presidential campaign.

The media should stop trying to dig up dirt for the sake a headline.  It’s not like it will suddenly make them relevant again.


Instapundit concurs.

Written by martinipundit

June 28, 2004 at 5:57 pm

Posted in 2004 Election, MSM, Politics

Tagged with , ,

Kerry Defensiveness Watch II

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The Kerry campaign blog continues to hammer away at the Bush campaign over the Hitler ads. The implication is that Bush is comparing Kerry to the Nazi dictator when we all know that it is the Kerry folks saying Bush = Hitler.  Kerry says that he’s focused on, I dunno, something, while continuing to disingenuously imply that Bush is comparing him to Hitler.  No.  It is the Senator’s partisans who played the Hitler card, and the Senator needs to drink the Kool Aid – unless he plans to disavow those folks.  Senator?  Senator Kerry?

I didn’t think so.

Written by martinipundit

June 27, 2004 at 2:28 pm

Pull the Ad?

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John Kerry’s blog wants the Bush Blog to pull an ad. An ad which references Hitler.  Reprehensible you say?  And you’d be right.  To use an ad with Hitler in it in connection with a mainstream party candidate for president of the United States is disgusting, demeaning, and despicable.  How could George Bush countenance such a thing?

Well, it turns out he didn’t. The pictures of Hitler in the ad are from, an organization devoted to the defeat of Bush and which is the sponsor if not author of the ad.

So, the Kerry campaign objects to the use of Hitler in campaign ads.  Small wonder, since the Bush campaign is teeing up the use of Hitler by Kerry partisans.  But then, the Kerry campaign was awfully silent when Moveon first put the ad on the internet.  One might almost see a double standard, or a fear of being exposed on the part of the Kerry campaign.  Can’t have it both ways even if that’s the hallmark of John Kerry.  If Kerry supporters are to use Hitler in an anti-Bush ad, then the Bush folks get to note the fact. 

But if you’re John Kerry, that means you get to accuse your opponent of using Hitler.  I mean, it’s not like you used him first.


OxBlog has more.

Update II

And now the Bush Campaign Blog responds:

The Kerry campaign says, “The use of Adolf Hitler by any campaign, politician or party is simply wrong.” We agree.

– Where was John Kerry’s disgust when he hired Zack Exley – the man responsible for encouraging the production of these ads as part of a MoveOn contest – to run the Kerry campaign’s internet operation?

– Where was John Kerry’s sense of outrage when Al Gore, just Thursday afternoon, compared the Bush Administration to the Nazis saying, “The Administration works closely with a network of ‘rapid response’ digital Brown Shirts who work to pressure reporters and their editors for ‘undermining support for our troops.’”

– Where was John Kerry’s anger when Al Gore in May spoke of “Bush’s Gulag”?

– Why has John Kerry not denounced billionaire and Democrat Party donor George Soros for comparing the Bush Administration to Nazis. Soros stated, “When I hear Bush say, ‘You’re either with us or against us,’ it reminds me of the Germans. It conjures up memories of Nazi slogans on the walls, Der Feind Hort mit (’The enemy is listening) wink.”

– Why has Kerry not spoken out against filmmaker Michael Moore who last October compared the Patriot Act to Mein Kampf. “The Patriot Act is the first step. ‘Mein Kampf’ – ‘Mein Kampf’ was written long before Hitler came to power.”

We created this web video to show the depths to which these Kerry supporters will sink to win in November.

Heh.  Game, set, match.

Written by martinipundit

June 25, 2004 at 9:00 pm

Destructive Politics

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Jack Ryan has dropped out of the Illinois Senate race.  While I personally don’t think it would have been much of an issue in the election – witness Bill Clinton and Arnold Schwarzenegger – he needed to make his own decision.

Look now for the Usual Suspects to clamber on with cries of hypocrite, family values, and anything other than giving the man credit for throwing in the towel when they said he should.

But, some will miss him.

Written by martinipundit

June 25, 2004 at 3:32 pm

Posted in 2004 Election, Politics

Tagged with ,

Kerry Defensiveness Watch

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‘’These people [Republicans] are so petty, so sad, so political, all they could do was spend the whole day finding a way not to let John Kerry vote,” the presumptive Democratic nominee told the annual convention of the Service Employees International Union. link

This is debate, Kerry-style.  It’s been going on for months now, so we’re going to start keeping track.

Senator – criticizing your economic plan does not equal keeping you away from the voting booth.  It is not the suppression of democracy, it is the expression of it.  Thank you.

Written by martinipundit

June 24, 2004 at 9:01 am

Looking Astern

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Wonkette appears a touch disingenuous:

As you know, GOP sachems are hewing to the official line on swingin’ Jack Ryan: They still back him, and they say the race should be decided on “issues,” not sexual peccadilloes. That argument seems so familiar. . . can’t quite place it.

Bill Clinton – we know.  But at least she follows up:

Wonkette’s Heartland correspondent has a slightly different take. He notes that Ryan, whatever he did do, did not cheat on his wife. This makes all the difference: “My cousins in Illinois say they can tolerate an exhibitionist. . . but wife swapping, they say, is the province of their mayor.”

I don’t know what happened there – divorces will get messy.  And it’s also true it’s distasteful if true.  Still, it was his wife.  But most importantly, the American people have spoken on this issue – twice.  It’s so … 1992.  Once again, the liberal penchant for perfection not in deed but in thought displays itself, because what is important here is not what transpired between two people, but what was said afterwards.  That seems familiar too …

Written by martinipundit

June 23, 2004 at 10:31 am

Bush Is Losing the War

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The big one.  No, the BIG one.

Not the ground war, not the conflicts in Iraq or Afghanistan, although both of them could be improved in various ways.  No, Bush is losing the media war, and that will lead to losing the real war – the one that counts.

I’m no fan of the media.  I think they tilt viciously left, are hypocritical, self-righteous do-nothings with a hugely inflated view of their importance in the grand scheme of things.  After all, are they not self-dubbed “the Fourth Estate?” In my estimation, politicians, ambulance chasers, journalists, used car salesmen – no difference worth mentioning.  And yet, they do have influence.  And they cannot be ignored.

By and large, the media are not fans of George W. Bush.  Start with the fact that if the surveys are correct, some 90% of them voted for Gore.  Then there is the fact that Bush is not very forthcoming with them.  While some call this secrecy, others have said that Bush has calculated that he doesn’t need the media.  I think both premises are mistaken.  The media will never roll over for Bush, but they must be taken into account.

The mainstream media – ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and MSNBC in the States; the BBC and Reuters primarily abroad – are all but campaigning for Kerry.  I have many liberal friends who insist to me that the media is conservative, and I can only conclude that they are far more leftist than I realize or they don’t actually pay attention to the news.  If the real story of Iraq, the economy on a rebound, and Abu Ghraib cannot be properly reported, how much less the heinous partisanship of a Democratic party that would rather see the defeat of Bush than the defeat of bin Laden.  We do get endless stories about American abuse of detainees, torture innuendo, the Patriot Act, and anything anti-Bush that can be found.  Yet the media maintains a stoic silence on issues such as obstruction of judicial nominees, minority sandbagging of Congressional committees, and false, preemptive accusations on the part of Kerry and other Democrats.  Let’s be clear: no Republican has ever questioned the man’s patriotism, but he uses that false charge to inoculate himself against legitimate criticism of his record.  And the media lets him get away with it every time.

And so does Bush.  Maybe the vaunted Rove machine that the Democrats are always touting is just keeping its powder dry, but I’m beginning to have doubts.  Do they realize how much the Democrats hate George Bush?  Do they realize that the most important thing to them is his defeat?  Nothing – nothing – else matters to them.  And the media are their faithful lapdogs in this fight.

It is probable that Bush cannot do much to sway the media, but he can use the bully pulpit.  He can ignore the carpers on the one side who always want to talk a Fallujah away when guns are the answer, and then he can defend that action in public.  Trust in the common sense of the American people – a sense rarely seen in the media.  For that is the problem.  The President should not make his case to the media but to the people.  Trust them and let them judge.  I believe Americans are fair and open-minded and that Bush possesses a trump card the media does not – trust.  But that trust is being eroded by the media in daily, haranguing, vicious, partisan sniping.  And it seems to be having an effect.  The Administration speaks not, but Bush cannot afford to have these charges go unanswered.  In the vacuum of silence, the carping media sets the agenda and shapes the perceptions. Yet it almost seems that the Administration is unwilling to bet the pot on the American people.  That’s wrong and too cautious by half.

A lot is at stake.  This much everyone agrees on.  But I believe that John Kerry is unfit for the office of the presidency.  I’ve been watching him for years.  He is a vacillating, opportunistic, empty suit.  He has married for money twice, has spent his life pretending he is better than his fellow man.  His record in the Senate is distinguished only by his lack of accomplishment and his pattern of voting against the interests of his country especially on defense matters.  He’s defended by liberals only because they’re stuck with him – not one of them marked him as their first choice.  He is a droning, pedantic, bore who makes Gore look interesting.  And if it were 1996, none of that would matter. 

But it’s 2004.  The stakes are high.  Terrorists still target the US, and they want the big strike.  Nothing less than exceeding 9/11 will do.  Kerry, who will seek the approval of our ‘allies” – France and Germany – before he’s willing to defend his own country, will talk his way into doing precisely nothing.  And a dirty nuclear bomb will go off in a major American city.  Perhaps Boston, which is my home as it is his.  I’m not afraid for myself – but I will be damned before I sacrifice my son on the altar of John Kerry’s presidential ambitions.

Written by martinipundit

June 22, 2004 at 11:20 pm

Kerry Found!

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John Kerry’s blog feels compelled to announce that he’s returning to DC for a vote.  Maybe the blogosphere does get results …


Matt Margolis notes an ethical complaint lodged against Kerry for his senate absences.  Though the media has yet to pick up on this, the story may yet have legs.

Senator – time to resign.

Written by martinipundit

June 22, 2004 at 11:16 am

Where’s Kerry IV

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Another blogger calls on Kerry to resign from the Senate.

Written by martinipundit

June 21, 2004 at 2:56 pm

Straw, Grasp

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The Kerry campaign remains mired in the past.  Apart from a fixation of Vietnam which is almost fetishistic, now we have Watergate. It almost beggars belief, but here it is at the DNC:

The DNC is now putting the Watergate cabinet to a more symbolically useful task. At a press conference today, DNC Chair Terry McAuliffe said that that cabinet would be used to house documents on what he called Bush’s “Dirty Dozen”–the 12 investigations currently underway involving Bush’s administration. These investigations range from Halliburton no-bid contracts to finding out who outed CIA operative Valeris [sic] Plame.

So the very cabinet targeted by the Plumbers is now holding ‘dirt’ on Bush.  Dirty tricks, get it? A fairly lame attempt at symbolism, but hey, one can’t expect much better from folks whose ideas calcified somewhere around three decades ago.

Written by martinipundit

June 19, 2004 at 5:15 pm

Where’s Kerry III

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Yeah, and Massachusetts taxpayers are paying a lot more than that for a no-show senator.

Honestly, is this the best they can do?

Written by martinipundit

June 16, 2004 at 7:48 pm

What I Learned in Summer School

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Living in Boston, I have a few ideas on the impending Democratic National Convention.  But though we conservatives here are few, it also turns out we have no idea how to welcome conventioneers to our city.  I mean, most of us are planning to leave town to avoid the whole thing.

But not these folks.  They’re more concerned that everyone get the welcome mat out in just the right way: 

Before GOP convention begins Aug. 30, veteran activists will train protesters in street tactics, legal issues, public relations and first aid in an effort they say is the largest of its kind. The aim: to create a force of well-schooled demonstrators who will carry out safe and organized protests instead of riots that obscure their message.

Yeah, riots would be bad.  People might misunderstand and think you’re “loopy.”

So instead, it’s important to get the basics down, and start at the beginning:

The four-hour class begins with protest history, from the Boston Tea Party …

and keep the really important things in mind like:

… treetop protests against logging.

It’s also important to know how to handle the “inevitable:”

Lawyers, law students and volunteers are teaching protesters about their rights and the legal process before, during and after a typical protest arrest. They learn, for instance, that they don’t have to answer questions.

That’s good for the answers would no doubt be embarrassing as people learn that protest groups seek American defeat in Iraq, support dictators and terrorists, would have the nation unilaterally disarm, and would give terrorists free run of the country.  No, better to keep quiet on that one.

Protesters-in-training also take medical classes, and learn how to treat activists who are injured or dehydrated.

Among the tips: carry cloth soaked in apple cider vinegar to help soothe eyes and skin stinging from pepper spray; don’t wear contact lenses, which can trap chemical spray; wear goggles to protect against rubber bullets.

Because Lord knows we don’t want the people holding the convention to:

have images coming out of New York City that make them [the Republicans] look like the reasonable ones, like they’re about responsibility and law and order and creating a safe society, and that the left was unreasonable and violent

No, nothing unreasonable about planning to stymie democracy and a city at the same time.

In seriousness, I have to wonder, what’s the point?  Kerry will be nominated in Boston in July, and Bush in New York in August.  Neither my leaving town, nor the aging professional protesters will alter that one whit.  The real protest comes in November – at the ballot box.  That’s what the Boston Tea Party was about – the right of a free people to vote and have a say in their own destiny.  The would-be protesters in NYC want to take that right away from people with whom they disagree.  Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see these protests as an expression of free speech – I see them as infantile acting out.  And the protesters appear to agree:

And, of course, adult diapers can provide relief during a long sit-in or jailing.

Written by martinipundit

June 15, 2004 at 3:36 pm

Where’s Kerry II?

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Some folks with more reach than I have noticed Kerry’s recent attendance issues in the Senate.  Something tells me they’ll have the same luck with it though …

Written by martinipundit

June 15, 2004 at 2:06 pm

Apple Pie Next!

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Look out, John Kerry has sewn up the motherhood vote.  Bad news for Bush: the flag and apple pie can’t be far behind …

Written by martinipundit

June 15, 2004 at 1:42 pm

McCain’s Honor

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John McCain has refused an overture to become John Kerry’s running mate.  To be sure, a good move on Kerry’s part, but an act of political suicide for McCain should the ticket go down to defeat.  But I think there’s more to it than that: John McCain and John Kerry are two men shaped in very different ways by Vietnam.  I doubt they can be reconciled for a national ticket.

But, there’s still hope.  Somehow I doubt this guy will say no …

Written by martinipundit

June 11, 2004 at 4:03 pm

Where’s Kerry?

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John Kerry missed the vote honoring President Reagan today, but that’s nothing unusual.  Kerry has achieved a most unenviable attendance record, missing 88% of all Senate Roll Calls this year.  If that sounds bad, the 13 votes he did cast out of the 111 Roll Calls, were all on three days: March 2nd, March 10th, and March 25th.  (There were 14 votes total over those three days – he managed to miss one of them.) That basically means John Kerry has shown up to work only three days over the last six months.  If any one of us had done that, we’d be collecting unemployment.  By contrast, Senator Kennedy has only missed 3 votes out of 111 in the same time period, also all in March – probably when he was out campaigning for Kerry, so those missing votes are basically Kerry’s too.

I’m no fan of our bloviating senior senator, but at least he’s there.  Kerry is running for president – I get that.  We have a Republican governor who will no doubt appoint a Republican if he gets the chance – I get that too.  But Massachusetts deserves two senators – just like every other state. 

Bob Dole resigned in 1996.  It’s time for John Kerry to resign from the United States Senate.

Written by martinipundit

June 9, 2004 at 5:34 pm

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