Monday, November 27, 2006

Republicans: "This is Blackhawk calling Houston. Come in, Houston. Over"

Don't know if anyone is reading this blog this weekend, or if you are too stuffed with food, too busy watching football games, or actively engaged in "discussions" with the more conservative elements of your family, but here is something for your post-Thanksgiving/pre-Election 2008 ruminations.

Lisa Voderbrueggen of the Contra Costa Times had this to say about possible 2008 challengers to McNerney:
Republicans and even Democrats almost certainly will field opponents against the political novice [McNerney]. Insiders are already talking about possible challengers.

The names being talked about -- although none has publicly indicated they intend to run -- include state Sen. Mike Machado, D-Linden, and Assemblymen Guy Houston, R-San Ramon, and Greg Aghazarian, R-Stockton. All three will be termed out of the state Legislature in 2008.

[Note: Houston and Aghazarian are termed out of their Assembly seats in 2008, but could still run for state Senate. Machado already served his three terms in the Assembly and will be termed out of the Senate also in 2008.]
And here are some remarks from the right-leaning Tim Hunt, former editor of the Tri-Valley Herald, in reference to Pombo's defeat Nov. 7:
Notably, there may be one Republican beneficiary to Pombos loss — Assemblyman Guy Houston. Houston won re-election over lawyer Terry Coleman for his third and final term in the Assembly.

There is no Republican-safe state Senate seat in the East Bay so Houston will face an uphill battle if he wants to stay in Sacramento after his Assembly term is up. However, if Pombo decides he's done with politics, McNerney will be ripe for the taking in two years because it will still be a Republican district [* see my note below]. Houston is a tireless campaigner and has represented his Assembly district well.
So there you have it, sports fans -- the ugly blue and yellow "Pombo" signs have not yet come down, and already there is speculation and positioning for 2008. That's what happens with a two-year election cycle. Hard to believe, but this coming summer will be when challengers will begin posturing for the 2008 primaries. So who do we have here?

(Rather than make this an overly lengthy post, I will look at each of these possible candidates in subsequent posts. Let's start with Mr. Houston):

Guy Houston, who has been in elected office since 1994 (first as mayor of Dublin, then as state legislator), is termed out of the State Assembly in 2008, and there is no likely State Senate seat he could go after. Houston's 15th Assembly district overlays the 11th District reasonably well. Houston does not represent Tracy, Lodi, and some of the other more eastern sections of San Joaquin. Also, Livermore, the largest city in his district, is not in the 11th. But the match is about as close as the state and federal districts get.

Houston labels himself a "fiscal conservative", that is, against raising taxes and for cutting government spending. I don't find the "fiscal" part so bad, as I am all in favor efficient government. But the "conservative" part turns me off. Houston definitely leans right. And as far as the environment, he is almost as bad as Pombo, though not quite a zealot like that soon-to-be-retired disgrace. For instance, he is endorsed by the CLORV - California League of Off Road Voters (though I guess they have to get back on the road to actually vote). That is the same organization that wrote desperate emails urging their members to help "Richard" in the 2006 election.

Houston beat lawyer Terry Coleman, 55% to 45%, this past election. This was just about the same percentages when he beat lawyer Elaine Shaw in 2004. (In an interesting twist, Elaine Shaw ran and lost against Pombo in 2002.)

To sum things up, here is a recent emailing from the Blackhawk Republican Women group, where they deplore Pombo's loss, but look to take the district back. In the mailing, they make sure to praise Guy Houston, while continuing to foster their delusions about a "McNerney/Media slime campaign". Umm, excuse me Ma'am, but the word "slime" more accurately applies to Pombo and other similar corrupt Republicans, not people like Jerry McNerney. But here is the quote, see for yourself. They sure sound bitter:
Opinions on the 2006 election and how we can take the Congress back!

The Pombo Race - The outcome of this race continues to trouble all of us. A review of the voting patterns is rather stark. It appears that the McNerney/Media slime campaign really took hold throughout the district. Calls were made into the district the last week falsely charging Pombo with covering up the Foley affair among many other false charges. Meanwhile, McNerney got a free ride even though he is a complete empty suit.

I want to especially thank Guy Houston for his help in the Pombo race down the stretch. As many of you know, in the same areas, Guy was polling as much as 20 points better than Pombo before the election. Guy stepped up by doing recorded calls and assisted in many other ways. In the end, it appears that Guy polled over 10 points better in the same areas. Guy also did better than registration in our area.

Thank you Guy – we look forward to great things from you and a bright future.
Well, they got everything all mixed up there, with the labelling our new Congressman, the one with a PhD, an empty suit, and some fantasy about robocalls tying Pombo to Foley. But the emphasis on "Guy" and "take Congress back" is hard to miss.

"Take Congress Back" -- that is interesting. Seems they are longing for the good old days of DeLay/Foley/Cunningham/Pombo/Abramoff corruption!

* Note:
I object to Hunt's classification of the 11th District as a Republican district. I know he is going on the voter registration advantage of something like 44% R to 37% D (as of Sept. 2005). But the district not only voted Dem for McNerney, they also went with Boxer and Feinstein, both Dems, in their respective US Senate races. And after McNerney's win, I hope the Dems will continue their voter drives to even out the spread.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Houston to Blackhawk,

Sounds like you've got a Blackhawk down.

Blackhawk Republican women - do you copy, over?

Shall we send in fabled pilot George W. Bush to attempt a rescue mission? Or perhaps we could send in Laura Bush instead?

Houston to Laura Bush: can you come out and cheer up the "poor" Republican women of Blackhawk?

12:09 PM, November 27, 2006  
Anonymous Bill Perkins said...

It's pretty funny that Guy Houston moved from Dublin to Livermore to be in the AD-15 and now he will have to move out of Livermore to be in the CD-11th. He could move back to Dublin. He'll have the nomination if he wants it. Agazarian has very little appeal out here and none in the 680 corridor. I'm sure Machado will not run against McNerney, he saw the great grass roots support Jerry has.

10:07 PM, November 27, 2006  
Anonymous Tom Benigno said...

Don't forget me the dragon slayer Tom Benigno, I'm still out here. I have run against Aghazarian before, Guy Houston will fall from Grace and Mike Machado won't try to take Jerry out. The people in Blackhawk are broke? I still support Jerry.

Tom Benigno

12:47 PM, November 28, 2006  
Anonymous Marilyn Bradley said...

Not sure who/what this blog site is, but you are mighty confused. If anyone had bothered to research the slime thrown at Congressman Pombo as I did every step of the way, you would know just how slimy it really was. For those who voted against the Congressman, you got what you deserve and when your taxes go up, remember who you voted for. Just to maintain the 33 yr. old Endangered Species Act that is costing Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer billions will have to raise your taxes. The success ratio of the Act as it is currently written is 1%. Something is wrong with that picture, folks.

Mr. McNerney appears to be an empty suit what with 6 failed companies to his credit and the new responsibility of administering 2 multi million budgets. Just having a job for a change is going to be a challenge I would think. Capitol Hill can be brutal!

As for Houston, he could always rent a room like Mr. McCloskey did should he decide to run for CA 11; however, he lives in San Ramon so it's not a problem. Obviously, your blog was not researched any better than your belief in all the filthy slime Congressman Pombo was subjected to.

4:25 PM, November 28, 2006  
Anonymous mariposa said...

Marilyn, you have drunk the kool-aid. Just what, in your extensive research Marilyn, did you learn about the Wise Use Movement?

Tell me Marilyn, just WHERE did you do your research?

8:14 PM, November 28, 2006  
Blogger babaloo said...

Marilyn, take a deep breath. You see, SNTP did research the things that were printed about Richard Pombo.

I understand that you're "Not sure who/what this blog site is." Let me explain. All those underlined parts? They're called links. When you click on them, they take you to the source for the material that's being cited — unlike your fatuous and unverifiable allegations that Jerry McNerney is "an empty suit what with 6 failed companies to his credit."

Let's be clear about who's spreading the slime here.

11:12 PM, November 28, 2006  
Anonymous Tom Benigno said...

Ms. Bradley: Your in denial, Pombo lost because he was a lier, he got caught in a circle of events that he could not get out of.
All Pombo had to do was to come to our forums, and answer the questions, raised by myself and Pete and our supporters.
Pombo as most of his party highjackers, lied so much they couldn't keep things stright. If he had debated us things might have been different.
As with you Ms. you think that the war was about 911? It was about oil for your SUV you lost sell your Hummer and take BART.
I don't mean to be sarcastic but many good people like you were fooled. My choice was to support Jerry if I didn't get the nomination, against Jerry. Petes was the same, so things are not so bad. From reading your comments you didn't even know that I was in the race. Typical Republican response. Tell me why, I hope it wasn't about money that was the problem from the begining.

Thomas A Benigno
Former Republican Candidate for congress three times against Pombo.

7:35 AM, November 29, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aghazarian currently represents Stockton (almost all of the CD 11 portion), Manteca, Ripon, and all the agricultural regions in East county in CD 11. Ran for AD17 in 2000 and lost. Claimed Cardoza's Assembly seat in 2002. Former school board member.

12:28 AM, December 03, 2006  
Blogger VPO said...

To Marilyn Bradley -- just like the Blackhawk ladies, you have your facts all mixed up. First, in my blog entry, I never said Guy Houston did not live in the district. That was in a comment that came after. So remember this simple formula -- Blog Entries and Blog Comments are two different things, usually written by different people. So don't combine the two, and don't blame the Blog Entry writer (me) for a mistated facts in Blog Comment.

I have followed former Congressman, now just a Rancher, Pombo for over 4 years. During that time, I have done extensive research, following official, well-documented sources. That is what we in the reality-based community call "facts". And, in Pombo's case, they were not pretty.

You may agree with his extreme anti-environmental positions. That is your choice. But you cannot honestly sidestep the corruption and sleazy dealings that he was engaged in. It is not any of ours fault if the FACTS about Pombo turned out to be nasty. You call it slime, we call it "the truth". If the truth is not pretty, blame Pombo, not us.

Seems like over 85,000 people in the district understood this point and voted the low-life out of office, and replaced him with a good, honest man.

7:52 AM, December 09, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The lesson of 2006 is: lie loud enough, long enough to falsely smear a candidate than you can deceive people into voting for a candidate or not coming out to vote at all. The kind of campaign run by the McNerney staff was despicable but effective. Let us hope that the voters in 2008 will realize the mistake they made in 2006 by electing McNerney and will correct that next time around.

Bob M, Danville

4:43 PM, January 09, 2007  
Blogger babaloo said...

Bob M --
You mean something like the Social Security lie? You know the one, where the NRCC sends out a hit piece accusing McNerney of wanting to extend Social Security to illegals when it turns out that the Bush Administration was already secretly negotiating to do exactly that way back in 2004?

12:23 AM, January 10, 2007  

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