An ongoing discussion of politics, law, pop culture, and fine draperies.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Follow-up, Schmollow-up

Permit me some uninspired linkage, without much commentary. Today, I offer little by way of comment, but find it necessary to provide the following catharsis:

Mr. Bin Laden, err ... Connolly addressing the throng

In Re: Tom Connolly

The Press Herald editorializes that
Lawyer prank dissolved free-speech rights. PPH reporter Gregory D. Kesich writes Connolly no stranger to media frenzy. In his own version of "redirect," Connolly himself says:

It's not against the law to carry a fully armed weapon in public as long as you don't point it at anybody and scare them. How could it be illegal to carry a $4.95 squirt gun? … There's been very little satire about bin Laden. That's why I had to go out of the country to buy the costume. It really struck a nerve.
Interesting choice of words, considering how close certain bullets almost came to striking one of his nerves.

Governor's Debate

I wanna give a shout-out to
Finding Words for his sharp reflection over the choice of who should be sent to the Blaine House for the next four years. It made for a nice primer to the last night's debate, which was the first real moment of reflection for me in this year's campaign.

Maine Impact also provides a nice election primer. In the interest of a good college effort at more than partial disclosure, it's worth noting that one of the site's managers has expressed his disinclination toward the current Guv in the past over the Baldacci administration's decision to award the Office of Tourism's web service contract to an out of state provider. My point? You won't likely see the Man for Bangor supply any Q&A material to the site before the election. Also, Tor has a few rants about the elections and such.

Yyyyaaannnywhooo …

Last night, Maine Public Broadcasting and U-Maine cohosted the final televised gubernatorial campaign debate at the Orono campus. The debate was broadcast over MPBN radio and TV, and can be viewed

Here is the Bangor Daily News'
wrap-up of the event. Particularly entertaining was the inclusion of independent candidate Phillip Morris Napier - The People's Candidate, who included a few zingers throughout the discourse. Among Napier's golden verbalisms:

Of Tabor: It "takes power away from aristocrats and gives it back to the people."
Of how to address bad road conditions throughout the state: "Make 'em better!"
Of Judges: Fire all the lawyers and put non-lawyers on the bench.
I hope someone eventually posts a transcript of L'debate, if they haven't already and I'm just too dumb to find it.

I thought
Pat LaMarche, while occasionally a little stumbly, made the best points of any of the candidates. By this, I mean she had her message and she hit it hardest and most effectively, mixing in her spiel with strong off-the-cuff responses. Again, wait for the transcript if you can't check out the podcast or rebroadcast. I guess this is how she garnered the endorsements of Portland Phoenix and Courier-Gazette. Now, what to do about picking up the vote of those who live in places other than
Metro Rockland and the Wild West End

I thought
Barbara Merrill dropped the ball big-time. She was primed to steal middle-lefties from Gov. B if she could just come across warmly. Instead, she stuck to her mantra – cut state government waste. Surely, this is the root of half of Maine's problems. But if you're going to lean on it, give it some skin and blood. She did neither, and barely displayed any of her own except when she got snippy with Woodcock after he issued an intimation or two about her former Democrat-ism.

My baseline litmus test for her failure was my wife, who is right in Barbara's wheelhouse of voters-to-be-allured. My wife's response said it all: "You know, I wanted to like her … but I don't think I do." Plus, she's 99% sure Rep. Merrill had plastic surgery on her face, due to the contrast presented by the skin on her neck. Not sure what this means – I present it as my wife's sentiment. Apparently, it matters to her, though. And ultimately, if Merrill fails again, my wife and the big chunk of voters like her are going to vote for Mama Baldacci's
son by default.

So anyway, one more to go tonight at
Colby College. And that makes three, with the one the Press Herald and WMTW-TV cohosted an back on October 17.

I guess then, it's all over but the votin'.

Oh yeah ...

And yesterday's Supreme Court argument came and went as the radar looked elsewhere. The Press Herald's Bart Jansen apparently sat-in and offered his take
here. The Washington Post's Charles Lane suggests that the Court wasn't too taken-in by the Bush EPA's half-hearted arguments. The New York Times was so underwhelmed by the story that they printed/posted an AP Story on the argument. NPR's Nina Totenburg didn't file one of her patented accounts of the Court's tet-a-tete that I so treasure, but her colleague Elizabeth Shogren filed this story about the cynical politics involved in the Bush Administration's smoke and mirrors game with the New Source Review rules. Sad, sad.

Finally …

I hope to make heads or tails soon of the big
District Attorney race in my area between incumbent Geoffrey Rushlau and Belfast lawyer Joe Baiungo. Playing coy, much as I observe Tor doing with respect to his prospects and the election, I may defer and await the outcome. With all I read, who knows what will happen. In the words of ESPN's Chris Berman, that's why they play the game.


Blogger weasel said...

Something doesn't add up about Barbara Merrill for me. I know all politicians are motivated in some part by ego but something about her Damascene conversion from Dem to Angus King-style independent on the floor of the Maine House, just as we entered the election cycle, and with her route to the Blaine House party blocked by a running incumbent from her party... Lets just say that Columbo would be up to the elbows of his rumpled mackintosh in thwarted egos, broken deals, and cynical manipulations if he decided to investigate that one.

I'll have to tell you over a beer soon about how I accidentally insulted Baldacci from the stage of the Bar Harbor Film Festival and how Pat LaMarche thought I was evil incarnate for a while. Neither are particularly good or long stories, but any excuse for a pint, right?

9:51 AM

Blogger Tor said...

I actually got an email from Mr. Baiungo, and he seems to have a good sense of humor about things, anyway. But I still think I might just leave that race unmarked.

2:23 PM


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