Sunday, April 30, 2006

Stockton Earth Day Festival, April 30

Report from VPO:

Well, what a day it was! Spring was in the air, the sky was blue, the grass was green. Fresh winds were blowing, ahd the mood at the Stockton Earth Day Festival today was vibrant, upbeat and positive. There were many booths, with T-shirts, and renewable energy displays, and paintings, arts and crafts, music, and good food. And of course, the festival brought the pols out, with two of the candidates having tables and one walking around taking in the sights. If anything, the festival proved that the "grassroots" in the 11th District are active, working hard, and determined to beat Pombo in this election cycle.

Republican Pete McCloskey was there, with his "not-paid-for-by-your-tax-dollars" RV. His table saw a lot of activity and he spent his time there, as well as making several circuits of the festival to meet and greet. He also took time to talk to an investigative reporter from a national magazine.

Democrat Jerry McNerney's volunteers were there, notably Nicholas and a couple of others, and they also saw a flurry of activity (Jerry was not there). Of course, the good news of the day was that Jerry won the Democratic Pary endorsement, a major victory over his opponent, Steve Filson. That endorsement could well turn the tide in Jerry's favor and it is looking more and more likely that he could triumph June 6th.

Several people saw Steve Filson there, perusing the booths. He did not have a table or booth there, and he seemed to be attending the festival on his own. It must have been a conscious decision on his campaign's part not to set up a table. Whether that was due to staffing shortages, or other priorities, or whether Filson did not want to be associated with anything too green, it is hard to say. Perhaps one of his supporters or staff could lend some insight into the lack of Filson table at the festival. I looked for him to see what was up, but did not run into him.

During the festival, I had a chance to speak with many people, and not one was in favor of Pombo. Of course, this was an environmental event, which is not something his supporters would attend. But over 10,000 people did attend, many from the area, and I suspect not many of them are going to be Pombo voters.
All in all, it seems to me Pombo's support is weaker than the tally at the 2004 election indicates. I think the District is suffering from "Pombo fatigue", and if the right Dem can make a splash and present an agenda that motivates people, we could see Pombo's numbers whither. It seems the District is not so much FOR Pombo as much as they just have not been offered a compelling alternative yet.

Now, back to McCloskey. His campaign seems energized, active, and with a decent amount of funding. So that leaves room for speculation as to what he will do post-primary, if he loses to Pombo. Would he give it up at that point? Would he back the Dem energetically? Would he try an alternative, such as running as an Indepedent? It is really hard to say, and I have no idea, but I can see from today, that a lot of people are turned on and motivated by Pete, and that he attracts a lot of attention to this race. How best to use that post-primary, I am not smart enough politically to say. I can only say that I hope the energy and spirit of the McCloskey campaign continues until Pombo is defeated, one way or another.

Happy Earth Day!


Anonymous SOGDT said...

According to the website, the Filson camp was busy walking precincts in Manteca (an area yet to be hit by the McNerney camp). I would hinder a guess that the Filson camp belived that talking to targeted voters in the district was more important than having a table at an event where a good portion of the people in attendance are not even from the district. Steve Filson himself was there though shaking hands and passing out flyers. It was a nice event.

9:34 PM, April 30, 2006  
Blogger VPO said...

Thanks for the response and clarification as to what Filson was up to. I heard that he was at the Festival, but did not know he was handing out fliers.

With all this activity in the 11th District, from McNerney, from Filson, and from McCloskey, you can see that every candidate is making a strong effort to see Pombo ousted, and that volunteers are out there making an effort that I think will have results.

This is so wonderful, compared to 2 years ago when McNerney was just finding out that he qualified for the ballot and had barely started campaigning yet. This is a sea change, a real turnaround, and, whether you are for McCloskey, McNerney, or Filson, or just want to see Pombo out -- it is all very, very encouraging!

9:56 PM, April 30, 2006  
Anonymous Vicki Lee said...

You can be sure that Team McNerney was out in force today too. Altho Jerry was still at the convention, basking in the endorsement of the State Party, his volunteers were on the streets in Tracy and in Alameda County as well as phone banking.

The campaign is reaching is stride. There is much work to be done. I can't think of more important work to be done in the entire country than to be out beating Dick Pombo, whenever and wherever we can.

It's all good.

11:14 PM, April 30, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a wonderful thread, to see a Filson supporter (sogdt), a McNerney supporter (vicki lee), and a McCloskey supporter (VPO) all NOT criticizing each other but focussed instead on expressing anti-Pombo sentiments! Que bueno!

Thx all - this is what this blog should be. This could be the best thread of the campaign provided we can keep Rick, Some Other Asshole, and Babaloo from commenting further!

They are the "nattering nabobs of negativism" - extra points if you can identify that quote.

11:30 PM, April 30, 2006  
Blogger babaloo said...

Anon --
Hah! Your sense of irony is delicious!

For bonus points, in a speech in San Diego in 1970, then Vice President Spiro Agnew used the phrase "nattering nabobs of negativism" to describe supposed intellectuals who attacked the Nixon Administration.

In 1973, Agnew resigned as Vice-President just before pleading no contest to tax evasion and money laundering charges. A year later, facing certain impeachment for obstruction of justice, Nixon resigned the Presidency.

Just offhand, it seems like those “nattering nabobs of negativism” might have been on to something. It’s a pity that more people didn’t heed their warnings.

1:08 AM, May 01, 2006  
Blogger VPO said...

Anon said I am a "McCloskey supporter" and that is true for the R primary. I also support anyone who is running against Pombo, and that includes McNerney, and yes, even Filson, as long as their efforts are against Pombo and for connecting with voters and building coalitions against this despicable representative.

We may have our differences here and there, but we share, and all are working for, the goal of ousting Pombo. So let's all hold hands and sing "Kumbaya". There, now, isn't that a nice way to start the month of May?

6:51 AM, May 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it must have been a great day. a park filled with politico's, illegals taking the day off, and everyone else without a job. Dont think there would be any Pombo supporters there. It must have been like Christmas in hait ashberry.

11:46 AM, May 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somehow the above comment does not really instill fear in me as a Democrat.

12:27 PM, May 01, 2006  
Anonymous Rick said...

So, anonymous, according to your rules, everyone has to be nice and avoid criticism except when you decide to criticize.

I recall something about a pot calling a kettle black...

5:30 PM, May 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ricky m'boy:

You are good at trying to twist Anonymous' words so you have a shot at refuting my meaning. The difference between you and me is that I'm reaming you while you're reaming ALL THE CANDIDATES but Filson - and Pombo.

As I said, McNerney, McCloskey, and Thomas aren't running the kind of negative campaign you are. Spreading bad karma is gonna bite your ass big time should you be lucky enough to win in June. Like I said, there will be no one there to stand with Stevey Boy, and Dickey Boy will be waiting in the wings to eat him up.

Ponder it. And try not to come up with another twisted non-sensical reply that reads well only to the brain-dead.

11:02 PM, May 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One more thing Ricky, I almost forgot:

Now would be a great time to say something nice about Jerry McNerney. After all, he received the state Dem party endorsement over the weekend.

Do you think you have enough class to say congrats - even on this blog - instead of casting it as something worthless and something you didn't want for Stevey Boy (like you did to the newspapers)? Its OK, no one is really SURE you're Kellar...

I mean really - you did kinda sorta say something nice about McCloskey's flyer the other day - couldn't you try hard to say something nice about Jerry?

I might actually say something nice about you in return, and voila - maybe we'll all start focussing on Pombo. Imagine that!

Great compliments to Babaloo for IDing the "nattering" quote. Only a true wonk (meant as another compliment) would know that one.

11:12 PM, May 01, 2006  

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