Posts Tagged ‘hillary clinton’

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Kennedy Out, Gillibrand In

January 23, 2009

allisonkilkenny1Allison Kilkenny • Operation Itch Contributing Writer header
see more in NEWS & ANALYSIS  see all posts from Allison Kilkenny 

Politico and other media sources are reporting that governor David Paterson has chosen Kristen Gillibrand to fill Hillary Clinton’s vacant Senate seat.

Gillibrand is a Blue Dog Democrat, which is the name moderate Democrats gave themselves so people stopped confusing them with Republicans. Gillibrand is a pro-gun, fiscally conservative “Democrat.” Blue Dog Democrats are the people who cower at the word “liberal,” and fail to acknowledge that the only gains we — as a country — have made regarding civil rights were because of those dreaded, damn liberals.

I have previously criticized the nomination of Caroline Kennedy because she was clearly a legacy selection. Let’s pretend her name was Caroline Smith, or Caroline Martinez, and she boasted of zero legislative experience, and could only incoherently mutter something about her daddy when asked why she wanted to fill one of two coveted Senate seats. No one would have considered such an applicant. Hence, why I hated the idea of Caroline Kennedy in the Senate. I’ve heard just enough about Camelot, thanks very much.

But Gillibrand is part of the same politically incestuous community. During the Clinton years, she served as Special Counsel to the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Andrew Cuomo, another nominee for Clinton’s seat. She too hosts lavish fundraising parties (out of state, an accusation she ironically used against one of her former political opponents, John Sweeney). Kennedy, no doubt, was seriously considered for the Senate role specifically for her fundraising abilities (the name Kennedy brings in a hefty chunk of change,) so it’s to be expected that cash cows are always at the forefront of these kinds of nominations.

I was really hoping Paterson would go for a fresh political name like Nydia Velasquez, who has served in the House for 15 years, and was the first Puerto Rican woman to serve in Congress. She has dealt primarily with small businesses, and is largely unknown in the political community, but I think that’s a good thing. Kennedy is very well known, has less experience than Velasquez, and I was supposed to take her seriously as a candidate, so why not Nydia? Oh, right, she’s not a legacy, or a Blue Dog.

At least Caroline was unapologetically liberal, a privilege only afforded to Kennedys, it seems. If you have a yacht, you get to look your fellow Democrats square in the eyes and say, “I believe in equal rights and not torturing foreigners. Fuck you.” But if you’re a middle-rank Democrat, you have to pathetically triangulate and apologize until you don’t even look like a Democrat anymore, and -BAM!- you wake up and your name is Kristen Gillibrand and you’re in the Senate.

Gross.

Cross-posted from allisonkilkenny.com

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The Clinton Conflict: The former president’s fundraising invites trouble.

December 22, 2008

Washington Post • See more in: EDITORIAL

THERE IS no getting around the uniquely difficult issues posed by the dual roles of Hillary Rodham Clinton as future secretary of state and former president Bill Clinton as the head of a foundation that raises money from foreign governments. Mr. Clinton’s foundation does valuable work around the world on issues such as HIV/AIDS, climate change and economic development. Foreign governments provide critical support; Australia, Ireland, Great Britain, Sweden, Canada, France, Denmark, Norway and the Dominican Republic, among others, support the foundation’s HIV/AIDS initiative, while Australia contributes to the climate change program. But Mr. Clinton’s good works also fall squarely within the future domain of Ms. Clinton, and his commitment to continue to raise money for these programs while his wife is in office presents inevitable opportunities for conflict of interest and other difficulties down the road. Ms. Clinton and the future Barack Obamaadministration would be better served if Mr. Clinton were to direct his prodigious energies elsewhere for the duration of her service. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Paying to Play

December 17, 2008

allisonkilkenny1Allison Kilkenny •   Operation Itch Contributor    •  
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The media has been focusing on the Rod Blagojevich scandal with all the zeal of a torch-wielding mob, but they fail to acknowledge that the dirty pay to play model demonstrated in Chicago is a microcosm of the political world. Everyone pays for everything, and only the wealthy can buy access to power.

New York can offer two other example of paying to play with Senator Chuck Schumer, and the legacy candidate gunning to fill Hillary Clinton’s vacated seat, Caroline Kennedy.

Blagojevich’s swear-laced scheming was crude, super illegal, and what ultimately led to his public demise, unsubtle. The governor never learned how to delicately press the boundaries of acceptability, and instead charged through them with all the nuanced skill of a rabid bull.

The fallen governor should have looked to Chuck Schumer, who demonstrates how to us pay to play the acceptable way. Schumer is the official beneficiary, advocate and overseerfor Wall Street. A Democrat, he fully embraced the free market principles that have led to the current financial turmoil. Since Chuck’s largest contributors are from Wall Street, he votes to please his corporate masters, and in doing so, he continues to buy access to power. It doesn’t matter if deregulation is bad for his state, and the country, as long as those fat Wall Street checks continue to roll in.
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Again, Why are you a Democrat in 2008?

August 25, 2008

So, YouTube and the DNC teamed up to ask Why are you a Democrat in 2008? Here is a highlight video of the responses. Mine did not make it-HMMM, I wonder why? It is below. Make sure you take the OBAMA-MCCAIN CHALLENGE NOW.

Okay- my response:

See also:  McCain-Obama Challenge     The Hermit     OI: Political ads      For Hire      Gear