The LuLac Edition #26, June 9th, 2006
NEWS OF THE DAY……………Robert P. Casey, Junior is starting to run radio ads countering the Santorum strategy the past few weeks. Casey’s ads talk about Santorum’s 98% voting record with President Bush, his misrepresentation of the immigration issue as well as the fact that the Senator voted 12 times to not raise the minimum wage. Casey appeared this week on The Nancy and Kevin Show on WILK Radio and joked about Santorum calling him (Casey) a thug regarding a dust up about the Sentator’s residence. On same sex marriage, Casey said he would’ve voted against the Senate bill since he believes in marriage being between a man and woman but did add that he felt the attempt to bring the issue up was an attempt by the Republican Party to obscure the real issues facing the country. Casey’s website and numerous blogs have been asking for contributions to keep the radio ads going to combat the Santorum offensive.
Earlier in the week, Casey took on Santorum on the environment in Philadelphia at an environmental forum. Here's what the Philadelphia Inquirer said: "Casey aimed his attack directly at Santorum at a Pennsylvania Environmental Council dinner, accusing the two-term senator of repeatedly putting business interests ahead of the environment and public health." "Sen. Santorum has spent 16 years in Washington, and I am sure he has given thousands of speeches," Casey told the audience of 400 at the Hyatt Regency Philadelphia at Penn's Landing. "But when it comes to the environment with Sen. Santorum, when all is said and done, there is more said than done."
WOW, SO THIS IS HOW YOU SELL A BOOK!!!!!..Ann Coulter’s current book does nothing to add to the discourse of issues in this country. Her recent comments about a few of the 911 widows who happen to be politically active and critical of the administration border on the insane. The true legacy, I believe of the Bush administration is that if you, as an American disagree with right wing Republican policies, or a war that has killed over 2500 people, then you are unworthy to be an American and labeled as “unpatriotic”. Coulter has been carrying the water of this wing of the party for years but this time has gone over the line. Declaring that certain 911 widows have taken joy in their husband’s deaths, referring to them as “harpies”, intimating without any facts that the men killed would’ve divorced the women anyway and saying they were going to pose next in Playboy for attention are just a few of the things in her book. If Coulter were not blond, loud and thin, no one would pay attention to her. A few of my friends disagree with the opinion that she’s some great beauty. As a matter of fact, one of my friends was going to say that she looked liked one of the hookers that used to hang out on South Main Street in Wilkes Barre before the Call Center Building was erected, but decided that would be a degrading insult to all hookers not only locally but worldwide.
COMETH THE POLITICAL YEAR, 2007.....It looks like the election of 2007 for county offices is making its way into the news. This week Lackawanna County Commissioner Robert Cordaro said that there might be a taxcut to county voters to ease the burden. You might recall that upon taking office, the Republican majority raised county taxes by over 50%. Cordaro and company have been trying to whittle that amount down and the announcement to the news this week was met with both glee and cynicism. It really depended on what aisle you sat.
Meanwhile in Luzerne County, the majority Democrats Greg Skrepenak and Todd Vonderheid decided to delay reassessment plans for properties until 2007 or 2008. The commissioners said that voters and property owners needed more time to understand the logistics of the new plan. The last time there was a county wide reassessment in Luzerne County was 1965. The Commissioners came under criticism because they voted “by poll” meaning that they simply phoned in answers when changing this public policy which was stopping work on a funded project without public input before its completion. By not discussing this at a public meeting, the commissioners gained the ire of taxpayer groups, the people with newer homes hoping for a fairer assessment as well as the “Sunshine Law” advocates. Did the majority Democrats want to buy time by delaying the assessment? Sure. Do people need to truly understand the ramifications of the new assessment plans for property? Most definitely. The fact that both Skrepenak and Vonderheid have even talked about this, even opened it up for discussion is politically amazing. For over 40 years, 13 county commissioners in that time span (I’ll name them if you like) have dodged this issue. Property reassessment was truly the “third rail” of local politics. For even bringing it up the duo should be commended. And as far as it being politically damaging, is there any true “star” on the Republican horizon in Luzerne County that has the fire power to defeat Skrep and Todd? I think not.
A few years back, I had lunch with a member of the Peters clan of Scranton. We began to talk about politics at the county level. Her feeling was that county commissioners are like baseball managers, “hired to be fired”. “In the first term, they have the support of a true majority of people who wanted change. About half of those people who voted for them really don’t expect any favors, they just wanted someone new. By the second term, there are more people who want more things from them. So they make compromises, do more favors than usual but still have the support of some of the people who elected them, not all but enough to win a third term. In the third term, people who were behind them felt they made too many deals, did too many favors but felt they are still doing a decent enough job to get re-elected. In the fourth term, the people who didn’t get or ask for favors outnumber the people who did. And the people who did benefit from the political benefactors feel they didn’t get enough for themselves in the first place. So now, the Commissioner, once popular among many is now seeing that the support he or she once had is just not there. And that’s why very few get re-elected after 16 years”, she concluded. You might think this is simplistic logic but I’m sure the late Ed Wideman, the late Charles Luger and the statewide government employee Joseph Corcoran would disagree with her (with apologies to Skrepenak and Vonderheid) assessment. (All were defeated after 16 years as a County Commissioner).
COMMANDER IN CHIEF STILL KICKING…Another episode aired this week. No coming attractions at the end of the show but will have to stick close to ABC to see what they are going to do to my girl’s show.
UPCOMING………THE INFLUENCE OF TALK RADIO IN POLITICS.