The Fighting 29th - Endorsements Posts about candidate endorsements. en Buffalo News Endorses Massa Reader Pat sends today's Buffalo News endorsement of Eric Massa.

]]> Endorsements Mon, 27 Oct 2008 14:50:59 +0000 Rottenchester 5117 at
Messenger-Post: Massa / Star-Gazette: Kuhl The Messenger-Post endorses Massa [pdf] mainly because of his more detailed positions on the issues. (Update: Here's the link to an online version, thanks to reader Cathy.)

The Star-Gazette follows the Gannett line and chooses Kuhl because he brings home the pork and because Kuhl of his "street wisdom" and "He's so rooted in the district that he no longer keeps an apartment in Washington, choosing instead to bunk out on a bed in his office."

]]> Endorsements Sun, 26 Oct 2008 13:08:51 +0000 Rottenchester 5113 at
Evening News: Kuhl on Goner List, Gets Endorsement Randy Kuhl is on an internal GOP "goner" list, according to a report in Politico. Kuhl's seat is ranked in the worst category, along with neighboring NY-25 and the Don Young (AK-AL).

Along with that non-endorsement from his party, Kuhl also received the endorsement from Vets for Freedom.

]]> Endorsements News Fri, 24 Oct 2008 00:34:16 +0000 Rottenchester 5104 at
Evening News: More Suffering, Endorsements, Calls The 13-WHAM has posted their story about Kuhl's "suffer" comment.

Reader Tom sends the City Newspaper endorsement of Eric Massa. City also has a profile of the 29th race.

Finally, Tom also sent this item from Politico which contains an e-mail soliciting DC-area Republicans to make phone bank calls. Randy Kuhl makes the top ten, with 338 calls.

]]> Endorsements GOTV News Wed, 22 Oct 2008 23:39:45 +0000 Rottenchester 5101 at
More Endorsements Reader Elmer noticed that Eric Massa was endorsed by American Hunters and Shooters.

The Star-Gazette also reports that Randy Kuhl was endorsed by Monroe County Town Supervisors, who are all Republicans.

]]> Endorsements News Tue, 21 Oct 2008 19:28:51 +0000 Rottenchester 5094 at
D&C Endorsement Goes to Kuhl The Democrat and Chronicle's endorsement of Randy Kuhl is the usual low-quality product of their opinion page. It condescends, ignores facts, and demonstrates the writer's ignorance of the most basic political truths.

Their first argument, such as it is, is that the little people of the 29th don't need a Congressman who is "encyclopedic on the issues", like Massa. We are too simple for that. We "can't afford politicians who fight the big battles". Massa is a "big-picture guy in a district with small-picture needs". The D&C apparently feels that Kuhl is the better man to keep the hicks in the 29th down on the farm.

The D&C also says that Kuhl has become "more confident" and "less defensive". No evidence is provided for these claims because the facts are in complete opposition to them. If anything, Kuhl has become more defensive since 2006. A few minor protests caused him to make his town hall meetings appointment-only events. He refused to participate in any public debates. Those aren't the actions of a confident politician.

The D&C believes that Kuhl, who has a long record of voting with his party, has "moved away from Bush". Their evidence is his words, not Kuhl's voting record. Kuhl voted against any effort to limit funding to the war in Iraq, thus handing the Bush administration a blank check, yet the D&C believes that "[h]e's challenged the administration on war issues." Kuhl switched positions and voted for the second, pork-packed bailout, but the D&C is satisfied that he "questioned the lack of accountability in the Bush-proposed legislation."

The underlying problem with the D&C is that they cling to a fool's notion of politics. They say that Kuhl "must put aside partisanship to work with Democrats." This is wishful thinking based on complete ignorance of Kuhl's leadership status and voting record. When it comes to important votes, Deputy Whip Kuhl has voted with his party 90% of the time.

The D&C has been cutting reporting staff to invest in their social networking website. When reporters don't report, the end result is fact-free editorials like this one.

]]> Analysis Endorsements Sun, 19 Oct 2008 12:28:52 +0000 Rottenchester 5088 at
News: Republicans Endorse Massa, Trib Interview Eric Massa was endorsed by one Republican County Legislator and a newly registered Democrat who was a Republican for 20 years.

The Hornell Evening Tribune has a lengthy interview with Massa.

]]> Endorsements News Thu, 16 Oct 2008 20:33:41 +0000 Rottenchester 5081 at
Massa VFW Endorsement Reader Elmer sends today's Corning Leader story [pdf] on Massa's VFW endorsement.

]]> Endorsements News Wed, 15 Oct 2008 19:00:09 +0000 Rottenchester 5077 at
Eaton, Batiste Endorse Massa Two retired generals, Paul Eaton and John Batiste, attended a joint endorsement event for Eric Massa and NY-26 candidate Jon Powers. Jerri Kaiser at the Albany Project has photos of the event.

Batiste lives and works in Rochester, and he endorsed Massa last year. Eaton's last Iraq assignment was being in charge of training the Iraqi military in 2003 and 2004.

]]> Endorsements News WNYCongress Tue, 02 Sep 2008 20:15:48 +0000 Rottenchester 4947 at
Massa Endorsement and Boating Reader Elmer sends two stories from today's Corning Leader [pdf] (jump [pdf]). The first is "2 big endorsements" given to Massa, according to the Leader headline. The story also mentions Massa's Veterans' plan.

The Kuhl story concerns the Clean Boating Act, which was recently signed into law by President Bush. The bill is a response to a court ruling that all boat ballast had to be regulated in the same way as commercial ships.

The story mentions an infestation of zebra mussels in Keuka Lake. According to the University of Rhode Island Sea Grant, the vector for spreading those mussels is often recreational boats. Kuhl believes that the bill cuts "red tape" by not regulating recreational boaters.

]]> Endorsements News Fri, 01 Aug 2008 16:54:41 +0000 Rottenchester 4893 at
Houghton Endorses Kuhl according to WETM-TV.  Hougton's take on Kuhl's tenure:  "outstanding".

]]> Endorsements News WNYCongress Wed, 23 Apr 2008 20:12:00 +0000 Rottenchester 4755 at
Massa Recommends Sicko Today's Massa press conference covered three topics: health care, the local economy, and Iraq.

Massa began with plug for Michael Moore's new movie, Sicko. Massa watched the movie and spoke at a special showing at Rochester's Little Theater. Massa recognized that people sometimes focus on Michael Moore's persona and tend to lose the message of the movie. Even so, Massa said:

I invite every voting American to go see this movie. It's something I've been talking about for two years: the moral, financial and ethical imperative of reforming our medical system.

Massa re-iterated his support of single-payer health insurance and addressed some of shortfalls of the current system. For-profit HMOs have "destroyed the doctor-patient relationship and corrupted the political system." Massa pointed to the $70,000 in HMO-related PAC money received by Randy Kuhl during the last cycle, and noted that "when that happens, you give up your credibility about speaking for the people."

Massa noted that Kuhl's charge that single-payer would raise taxes by $7,000 per person was not only too high, but also that it ignored the other burdens placed on business, which pays 50% of health care costs, as well as on the taxpayers. Massa noted that 25% of Medicaid is paid for by taxpayers. Even though the popular conception is that Medicaid only goes to the economically disadvantaged, Massa noted that roughly 70% of Medicaid money goes to elder care.

I asked Massa whether he thought that single-payer is a silver bullet solution to health care issues. He said that there's no single silver bullet, but single payer changes the health care model. He pointed out that the majority of health care money is spent in the last 1 to 1 1/2 years of life. One of the reasons for this is that most of the health care decisions are from the perspective of the bottom line of for-profit HMOs. Massa believes this is the wrong model, and that those decisions need to be made by the doctor, patient and family.

I also asked his take on the some of the criticisms of single-payer as implemented in Canada. For example, the formularies (list of authorized drugs) in one province differ from others, and often new, life-saving drugs are delayed. Massa responded by noting that the overall health statistics in Canada are better. Massa said that we can't use the Canadian examples to stop us from moving forward. Instead we need to look at what's wrong in Canada and say "let's not repeat it here". He noted that Medicare, which is functionally single-payer healthcare, is largely successful.

Massa also repeated one of the messages of his 2006 campaign: everyone should have the same medical plan that Congress has given itself: "If it's too expensive for the average US citizen, why is it not for every member of Congress?"

Massa then turned to jobs. He laid out two formulas for job creation in the 29th:

  1. "Bring home pork...a never-ending series of addictive Washington handouts." This is Massa's characterization of Randy Kuhl's plan, and he used as evidence Kuhl's recent $43,000 earmark that paid for a study to find barriers to economic development in Cattaraugus and Allegany counties, as well as three counties in Pennsylvania. Massa's retort:
    I think it would have been better to give me the $43,000, because I know the two reasons: no jobs and no roads.
    Massa called this handout "exactly what the government should not be doing".
  2. "A new vision that marries education and industry." This is Massa's new economic plan, and he added a few details. He said that we need to "educate to the economy". He sees a plan where students sign up contractually for a certain job, and receive an education that is the product of industry and professors working together to create courses that address real industry needs. Massa sees the role of government as providing tax breaks to help pay for the infrastructure needed to enable this partnership.

Massa's third topic was Iraq. He mentioned the accusation that he's a one-issue candidate, and countered that Iraq is the "issue of my generation". He pointed to Randy Kuhl's multiple votes in support of the War and his multiple, incorrect predictions of when the war would end.

I asked him if he thought Kuhl was a "dead ender" or if he would change his position on Iraq. Massa said that he can't predict that, but "this election is about accountability". He noted that when Kuhl was asked whether he supported the war in Iraq during his first run for Congress, he said that he did.

In other Massa-related news, his campaign announced two more labor endorsements, from the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).

]]> Endorsements News Wed, 11 Jul 2007 20:37:50 +0000 Rottenchester 4375 at
News Items I've been off the net for a couple of days, but the news in the 29th keeps rolling in. Here's the roundup:

  • Randy Kuhl has joined the bi-partisan Congressional Human Rights Caucus.
  • Eric Massa has racked up another union endorsement - this one is from the Communications Workers of America (CWA).
  • Rochesterturning reports that Bob VanWicklin's assertion that turnout in the North was lower than in the South was rebutted, forcefully, in the Corning Leader. VanWicklin's statement is incorrect for the 29th, but it was made in the context of speculation about the fate of the 29th after redistricting, which might include all of Monroe County, including Rochester. Since most of Rochester is represented by safe-seat Louise Slaughter, my guess is overall Monroe turnout for Congressional races is lower than turnout in the Southern Tier. I still don't agree with VanWicklin, since a tight race in the "new" 29th might draw more Rochester voters to the polls. But I'll give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he wasn't simply misstating well-known facts.
]]> Endorsements News Sun, 08 Jul 2007 14:34:43 +0000 Rottenchester 4373 at
Massa Gets Brighton Endorsement, Nachbar Speaks Again Stlo7 of Rochesterturning attended the Brighton Democratic Committee meeting last night and reports that Massa gained that committee's endorsement. David Nachbar appeared and made his case at this meeting. Rochesterturning will be posting video and commentary soon.

Update: A Rochesterturning reader also reports that the Ontario County committee endorsed Massa last night.

]]> Endorsements News Tue, 26 Jun 2007 12:23:33 +0000 Rottenchester 4363 at
Massa News Eric Massa's Wednesday press conference bore fruit in the form of a story in today's Olean Times-Herald.

Yesterday, the Massa campaign also announced that it received the endorsement of the Town of Henrietta (Monroe County) Democratic Committee. According to Massa's site, the Town of Brighton and Ontario County Democratic Committees are meeting next Monday. I'll wager that two more endorsements are coming.

Update: The Massa campaign has also announced that the Town of Canandaigua (Ontario County) committee endorsed Massa yesterday.

]]> Endorsements News Fri, 22 Jun 2007 13:06:09 +0000 Rottenchester 4359 at
Massa's Wednesday Press Conference The main topic of this morning's Massa press conference was Iraq, driven by the Batiste endorsement and his appearance at a Massa fundraiser this weekend in Ellicottville, Cattaraugus County. The fundraiser also coincides with the endorsement Massa received yesterday from the CattCo Democratic Committee.

Rick Miller of the Olean Times-Herald (which covers Ellicottville) was on the call, and asked a number of questions. The first was whether Iraq would be an issue in 17 months. Massa responded that it is an issue today, and as long as the President continues with his "failed strategy", we will need leadership on the issue. "Leadership is not flying over Iraq and announcing all is well," Massa said, referring to Kuhl's Iraq trip last summer. Massa said he believed that Iraq will "absolutely" be an issue in 2008.

Miller then mention the September re-evaluation of Iraq policy, and wondered what Massa thought about it. Massa said that it's "obvious that Iraq is not more secure now because of the new troops." He re-iterated his partition strategy: "We need to learn the lessons of Bosnia" by separating the warring factions and then leaving.

As for the war on terrorism, Massa says that "no one is more committed to hunting down terrorists than me" and referenced his combat experience in Lebanon in the early 80's on the USS New Jersey. Massa called the partition strategy the "only strategic shift that will enable us to rapidly depart Iraq and do what we can do" to ensure some stability. He pointed out that partion is already happening, since the country is dividing itself, but it's happening in "the bloodiest way possible".

In response to a follow-up about the kind of planning that's required for an end-game in Iraq, Massa noted that "those plans are already in place." He said that there's ample unclassified evidence of planning, and that he believes that Pentagon planners have also made extensive studies on an exit strategy. The issue, Massa believes, isn't the exit plan, it's the unwillingness of the President to shift to a new strategy.

I asked a more general question about General Batiste's future role in the Massa campaign. Massa said that Batiste is "acting as a trusted advisor and counselor." Batiste understands the "ground game and the lay of the land tactically" because of his experience in Iraq. Massa said he also considered himself fortunate to have Batiste as an advisor because of Batiste's business experience. Massa will look to Batiste to provide advice and counsel on how to bring economic growth to the area.

Batiste's input on economic growth dovetails with Massa's desire to make the issue of a new jobs base in the 29th front-and-center for his 2008 campaign. At the top of the press conference, Massa announced that he is developing a plan similar to one that was successful in the Raleigh-Durham area. This plan brings together business, education and local government, leveraging the strengths of each group to help build an economy that will employ young people in the area. Currently, those young people receive an education at local colleges but must leave the area due to a lack of jobs.

As for the employment of Eric Massa, which was another question asked by Mr. Miller, Massa noted that he curtailed all other activities in April when he becam an active candidate. Massa's noted that he can't take a salary from his campaign, so he's making personal sacrifies, "as do all candidates who aren't beholden to corporate PAC money."

]]> Endorsements News Wed, 20 Jun 2007 16:23:02 +0000 Rottenchester 4358 at
Batiste Endorses Massa Maj Gen (Ret) John Batiste has officially endorsed Eric Massa. During the last election cycle, Batiste's anti-Kuhl statements were featured in Massa campaign ads, but there was no official endorsement. During this cycle, Batiste has already made anti-Kuhl ads for the organization.

Batiste contributed to a "live blog" on the Daily Kos yesterday. In one of his responses in that discussion, it was clear that Batiste is still a Republican:

It's important to remember that is not antiwar. This great organization is focused on doing what's right for America and our incredible military. When I joined the organization, it became bi-partisan as well.
]]> Endorsements News Tue, 19 Jun 2007 15:17:24 +0000 Rottenchester 4356 at
Massa News Roundup Eric Massa has received the endorsement of the Town of Gates (Monroe County) Democratic Committee. He's also announced that he's retaining the Rochester firm of Novak Media to do consulting for his campaign (check out the story and comments at Rochesterturning for more information on Novak).

Finally, perhaps the most interesting piece of news: Eric Massa will host Maj General (Ret) John Batiste for a liveblogging session at the Daily Kos on Monday from 11:30 to 12:30. This is interesting if it signals that Batiste will take a more active role in the 2008 Massa campaign.

]]> Endorsements News Sat, 16 Jun 2007 00:48:14 +0000 Rottenchester 4350 at
Two More Massa Endorsements The Massa Campaign has announced two more endorsements: the town of Rush (Monroe County) and Yates County.

]]> Endorsements News Tue, 12 Jun 2007 15:53:31 +0000 Rottenchester 4346 at
Two More Massa Endorsements In the past few days, Eric Massa has been endorsed by the Democratic Committees in the Monroe County towns of Chili and Mendon. All of the town of Mendon, and all but a little slice of Chili lie in the 29th district. With these two endorsements, five of the nine Monroe County towns in the 29th have endorsed Massa.

]]> Endorsements News Tue, 05 Jun 2007 17:33:45 +0000 Rottenchester 4340 at