Thursday, February 26, 2009

Rep. Blunt and Sen. Stevens

You know what they say about birds of a feather . . .

Just a little flash back to 2006. The group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington came up with a list of the 20 most corrupt politicians in DC. Guess who came in at #1 - Congressman Roy Blunt. This non-partisan group is so good at picking out the corrupt politicians, they picked Congressman William Jefferson (the Democrat from LA with a freezer full of cash).

What did Roy Blunt do to get listed as #1? "Rep. Blunt's ethics issues stem from the misuse of his position to benefit family members, his connections to Jack Abramoff, and a trip paid for by a foreign agent." The report details of helping out big tobacco companies to assist his wife, but what I thought was prophetic is that he helped out UPS and Fed Ex when his son, Andy Blunt, was the lobbyist for these two companies. When Blunt needed a kindred spirit, he went to his good friend, Sen. Ted Stevens. After almost $100,000 in political contributions from these two companies (and giving his young son some work), the only person that would help Congressman Blunt insert a special provision in a bill was Sen. Stevens. Blunt and Stevens co-hosted a party together, sponsored bills together

Sen. Stevens was convicted of violating federal ethics rules and run out of office. Here's hoping Missouri voters end Roy Blunt's political career, too.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Musings About Eastern Jack

Jeff Roe is talking trash about Eastern Jackson County races over at The Source.

A slightly more intelligent analysis can be found over at the Jackson County Democratic blog.

Where do you think Missouri Democrats should focus their resources? Matt Bartle's senate seat or the three empty Missouri house seats?

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Dream Shall Never Die

Today's New York Times' article about Senator Edward M. Kennedy is a great reminder of the tremendous contribution he has made to our country, what a legendary senator he has been, and the critical and timely importance of his hallmark issue: healthcare. There has been no greater advocate, no more dedicated champion of the cause of healthcare and the proposition that healthcare is indeed a right, not a privilege. Whether, in this rare moment in time, Congress will pick up his mantle and assume this ultimate responsibility should be the question we ask when we judge whether we had leadership in our time.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Robin Carnahan - Standing up for the Elderly

Secretary of State Robin Carnahan comes by some things naturally, like standing up for the elderly.

The St. Louis Biz Journal has an article about Robin sticking up for an elderly St. Louis woman who was ripped off by some shady financial companies. OK, that is her job to regulate securities, but Robin does a fine job.

It's good to know that someone is out there fighting for middle class America.

Roy for Senate

It's about time we returned to real Missouri values.

You know, we need more of the Blunt family in our state. Matt Blunt has shown himself to be a leader in ethics and open government during his four years as Governor. His father, Congressman Roy Blunt, represents real Missouri values. Like when he divorced his wife to marry a tobacco lobbyist; those are family values. Then, when tobacco companies needed a favor, Blunt helped out his lobbyist wife by inserting language into a bill.

I can't wait for Roy Blunt to bring his record of family values and self-dealing to the US Senate.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Defending the Jackson County Home Rule Charter from the Jackson County Legislature

The Committee for County Progress was formed in 1964 "to reform and restructure Jackson County government." Members of the organization helped draft the Jackson County Charter, known as the "Home Rule Charter", and worked to secure its passage with the voters of Jackson County in 1970. In the Preamble to the Charter, they set forth their purpose with honesty and integrity, for all to read:
We, the people of Jackson County, Missouri, in order to perfect the structure and enlarge the powers of our county government to insure that it is just, orderly, efficient, and fully responsible to the people, and to secure the benefits of home rule and self-government for Jackson County to the fullest extent possible under the Constitution of the State of Missouri, do adopt this Charter as the fundamental law for the government of this county.

It is time for the Committee for County Progress to rise up again, and tell our legislature that the principles set forth in that document did not fade over the past 38 years. It is time for the Committee for County Progress to once again work to insure that our Jackson County government has the powers to be "fully responsible to the people", and "to secure the benefits of home rule and self-government for Jackson County to the fullest extent possible under the Constitution of the State of Missouri," and to remind our straying Jackson County legislature that the Jackson County Home Rule Charter, not their attempts to weaken it, is "the fundamental law for the government of this county."

The Jackson County Legislature has chosen a fight with those who believe in Home Rule and in the Jackson County Charter. It has decided that home rule is inconvenient when it comes to ethical enforcement, and, in a recent ordinance, sought to strip the Jackson County Ethics Commission of the authority to handle ethics complaints against our elected officials. Instead of being "fully responsible to the people" and "securing the benefits of home rule and self-government", the Jackson County legislature wants to "outsource" ethics oversight to the Missouri Ethics Commission, hidden away behind closed doors in Jefferson City.

Where the Committee for County Progress has always stood for higher ethical standards, the Jackson County Legislature has sought to lower them as far as the state will let them. Where the Committee for County Progress has stood for Home Rule, the Jackson County Legislature has sought to outsource their dirty laundry.

It is my hope that the Committee for County Progress will take a strong stand against this attack on the Jackson County Charter and the principles behind it. I hope that the Committee for County Progress will issue a resolution condemning those legislators who do not join in a call for a return to ethical home rule. I hope that the Committee for County Progress will refuse to endorse any candidate in the 2010 who does not support ethical home rule. I hope that the Committee for County Progress will, as its mission calls upon it to do, help recruit and support progressive candidates to replace those who will not join with us for this purpose. If it becomes necessary, I hope that the Committee for County Progress will provide the funding and volunteers necessary to support an initiative campaign returning our county to its founding principles.

If the Committee for County Progress does not lead the fight to support our Charter and ethical home rule, what possible reason does it have to even exist?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Source, Siettman and Gay Bashing

Mayor Funkhouser recently hired Mark Siettman away from Jeff Roe's blog, The Source.

The Source is the mouthpiece for all things ultra-conservative. Which is fine, the 1st Amendment is a great thing. CCP Blog readers may not recall (but I do) that the Source likes to engage in a little gay bashing every once in a while. Sure, that is standard fair for Roe in all his campaigns for Congressman Graves, but is it really ok for City Hall in KC?

When I called Jeff Roe onto the carpet, the best insult they could come up was to insinuate that I was gay. The picture above is the picture The Source used under the caption of "Stephen Bough's Got a Crush" and here's the partial text:

Here at The Source we’ve found it disturbingly creepy that CCP blogger Stephen Bough can’t take his mind off of Jeff Roe. You have to wonder if Bough has a little man crush on Kansas City’s most prominent political figure.

Grow up, I know. Listen, the problem is that some folks think it is ok to trash gay people, make fun of gay people and tell gay jokes. That's all fine if you are a Republican at The Source. It is not ok in the Democratic Party and not ok if you work in KC City Hall. I would bet you that every one of our City Council members don't think gay bashing is funny. Several of them are down right progressive and think folks that happen to be gay are actually humans.

It is horribly distributing for the Mayor to employ a person with this kind of history. Kansas City is known for being open, affirming and accepting of those in the GLBT community. The Source and Jeff Roe, Mark Siettman's former employer, is not. Remember the fuss about Roe and Graves calling Mayor Kay Barnes "Gay Barnes?" How about Graves and Roe with the whole "San Francisco Values" campaign?

Mark - did you pen the nasty anti-gay attacks?

War of Northern Aggression

The War of Northern Aggression - haven't heard that one in a while. For all you Yankees, that is the Civil War. You know, the one you thought was fought over slavery.

Seems like some in the leadership of the Republican Party in the State of Missouri are having a hard time with dealing with that whole Abraham Lincoln, free the slaves, thing. The KC Star's Jason Noble had the following article:

JEFFERSON CITY | An unexpected turn of phrase on Tuesday upended a debate over abortion in the Missouri House.

While attempting to criticize the extent of federal authority exercised in the Freedom of Choice Act suggested by some Congressional Democrats, Rep. Bryan Stevenson, a Webb City Republican, referred to the Civil War as the “War of Northern Aggression.”

“What we are dealing with today is the greatest power grab by the federal government since the War of Northern Aggression,” Stevenson said.

The statement drew an audible gasp from the chamber. Rep. Don Calloway, a St. Louis Democrat who is African-American, demanded an apology.

Stevenson immediately retracted his statement, assuring he meant no ill will toward anyone and raising his own Cherokee Indian heritage as proof of his sensitivity to slavery.

“I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize for any offense that my earlier comment made,” he said.

Ya, ya, he's sorry. How does a reference to revisionist history accidentally make it into the vocabulary of a state legislator when debating abortion? Maybe, because some one's real colors are showing.