...busting up my brains for the words

Saturday, March 18, 2006

SD60 convention

My Senate District convention was held yesterday morning in the beautiful Lyn-Lake neighborhood, or as suburbanites call it, Uptown. I threw my hat into the ring to be elected Delegate for the 5th Congressional District and State of Minnesota conventions. With a little bit of help from a constituent, I won. I consider it an honor.

Since SD60 has no candidates running for any office and since this is a non-presidential election year and since there is no drama in the Republican races this year, by far the most electrifying issue of the day was Martin Sabo's announced intention to retire as Congressman of the 5th Congressional District.

Only two days ago I wrote that a realistic approach will dictate that no one but a liberal Democrat or a Green Party candidate has any hope of getting elected to this seat. But there were inspiring voices heard today at my convention that say I am wrong and pessimistic. Naturally, I want to believe that a Republican can win as Congressman of CD5, so I listened and dared to dream it might come to pass. Deputy Chair of the State Party, Eric Hoplin made no bones about the work involved and implored us to give up "that thing you love to do evenings" in order to work for a Republican victory. I couldn't help but notice that Mr. Hoplin's inspiring words actually caused another "realistic" Republican I know to beam and jump to his feet with applause. Just last Thursday, this "realistic" Republican was heard saying that because the 5th District is rife with social programs, it will always remain in DFL hands.

So I wasn't the only one who was struck with sparkles and dreams, although I'm not sure I have time to give up all my evenings. It seems to me they are already fairly well spent.

James Turnham's name had come up during the course of the convention and he was referred to in very favorable terms. To his great credit, then, when Mr. Turnham appeared in person to meet with us, this was a very powerful showing. Everyone in the room saw James Turnham as possibly being our next congressman. If you look over in my sidebar, you'll see a new addition; James Turnham For Congress. I think it looks a bit weak as of this writing, but I expect it will be improved in time. After all, James is just finding his legs so far and I predict he will find his stride before long.

I got this email from "the soul of the MN GOP", Lyall Schwartzkopf;

Now is the best time in 28 years for
a candidate
to win.
But everyone needs to move quickly.
We have a base in the 5th Dist. of

about 28 - 30 % of the vote.
We need only
another 5 to 10 % of the vote
to win.
The 5th District
is the most liberal dist.
in Minn. Therefore we need a
that can keep much
of the social conservative base
and put in the conservative DFL

and union base. The Fire, Police,
Building Trades and Teamsters
are all up for

grabs when the DFL endorses a very
liberal person for Congress.
It means that our
candidate can not
be a strong Bush backer.
The person must have sound ideas on
Iraq, on the 9 trillion
dollar deficit, on health care and
the environment.
I believe
we can be for peace in the
middle east and a sound
gove[r]nment in Iraq can begin to

stabilize that peace. But,
now is the time to move. Maybe the
candidate we support
has to
be an Independent. That is not all
ba[d]. The most important
vote cast by
a Congress person is
the first vote which is for
the Speaker of the House. How
vote goes, so goes
legislation for the next 2 years.
We need a candidate that
not vote for a Dem. Speaker. I would
prefer a candidate that
will vote for
a GOP Speaker, but I
would settle for a candidate
that would vote for no Speaker.
means the Dems have one less
vote for Speaker. That's what counts.

The most reassuring fact of Mr. Schwartzkopf's
analysis is that,
We have a base in the 5th Dist. of about
28 - 30 % of the vote."

Living in Uptown, it's far too easy for me
to assume it's even lower
than that and then to reason that
any conservative representative would
simply leave the district unrepresented.
I think Lyall is right
when he says that,
"It means that our candidate
can not be a strong Bush backer."

A Republican candidate would attract
little support if he were to support
a "stay the course"
line in Iraq. But Lyall mentions some common
ground issues that could actually
gain some of
the conservative democrats and and the union base.

This is getting interestinger and interestinger.


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