Thursday, November 30, 2006

Kos Weighs in on 2008

Earlier today, Kos weighed in on the 2008 race and had this to say about Governor Richardson:

Of course, Bill Richardson will make a play for Nevada, counting on regional kinship and its Latino voters to pull him to the top and give him a boost headed into the next few primaries. In fact, Richardson is a big reason the Nevada caucuses even exist. Still, if it's a battle of Latino voters versus Labor, I would give the edge to labor. My people still don't vote in the numbers they should. But Richardson is also very popular in the Latino community. If anyone can get them out, it'll be him.

Then again, Richardson (and Vilsack) are at a huge disadvantage. In the latest round of campaign finance reform, senators made sure they would get the upper hand by allowing themselves to transfer their senate funds into their presidential account. Governors are not permitted to do so. So senators generally get a $10-20 million head start on governors. Just another reason that the current campaign finance regime needs to be dumped in favor of a brand new, more sensical approach.


What Markos shouldn't discount is Richardson's ability to gain the support of organized labor. I don't think John Edwards has cornered the market on organized labor in Nevada. It's still early, and while he may have labor friends in Nevada, so does every other Democrat in the race I'm betting.

Markos is correct that Governors aren't able to transfer their funds into a presidential account, and he makes the point that senators get a "$10-20 million head start on governors". But I'd like to remind Markos that Democratic Senators have had problems getting elected over the last 40 years. And I'm not worried about Bill Richardson being able to raise money. He's proven himself in that department, specifically in his recent re-election campaign. So Governor Richardson is not at a huge disadvantage, despite what Markos claims.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Q Poll Released on Potential 2008 Nominees

Quinnipiac University just released its latest "national thermometer" poll (likeability) and among potential 2008 Democratic nominees, Governor Richardson rates near the top, in a dead heat with John Edwards and Hillary Clinton.

Here are the results:

The mean scores for each politician with the percentage not knowing enough about the individual to rate him or her:

1) Rudolph Giuliani - 64.2. (9)
2) Sen. Barack Obama 58.8 (41)
3) Sen. John McCain 57.7 (12)
4) Condoleezza Rice - 56.1 (7)
5) Bill Clinton - 55.8 (1)
6) Sen. Joseph Lieberman - 52.7 (16)
7) NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg - 51.1 (44)
8) John Edwards - 49.9 (20)
9) Sen. Hillary Clinton - 49 (1)
10) N.M. Gov. Bill Richardson - 47.7 (65)
11) Sen. Joseph Biden 47 (52)
12) Nancy Pelosi 46.9 (34)
13) Gov. Mitt Romney - 45.9 (64)
14) Former VP Al Gore - 44.9 (3)
15) President George Bush - 43.8 (1)
16) Sen. Evan Bayh - 43.3 (75)
17) Newt Gingrich - 42 (15)
18) Sen. Bill Frist - 41.5 (53)
19) Sen. Harry Reid - 41.2 (61)
20) Sen. John Kerry - 39.6 (5)


Looking at the Democrats above Governor Richardson, Bill Clinton won't be running again, and Joe Lieberman is washed up and done. Joe Lieberman isn't even a Democrat anymore. Only Barak Obama is rated higher than Richardson, and that's because of one speech he gave at the DNC in 2004. And one speech does not give Obama enough experience to be President.

The big losers in the poll: John Kerry who finished 20th and Evan Bayh who finished 16th, both below President George W. Bush. And Al Gore wasn't much better, finishing slightly above W.

So I'd say Governor Richardson is in good position for 2008, if he chooses to run.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Richardson The Best Pick For President

At least according to the Columbia Daily Tribune (and all of the "for Richardson" family) he is.

So as not to violate any copyright laws, I'm not going to enumerate all of the reasons Bill Clark laid out for why Governor Richardson should be President, but it's important to say it all boils down to this phrase, "Experienced Leadership. Proven Results", or more simply there is no substitute for experience. Mr. Clark shares the standard fare of Richardson's resume, but it's what he's done as Governor of New Mexico that most people aren't aware of.



As New Mexico governor, he has:

● Become the nation’s first governor to veto eminent domain reform legislation.

● Was successful in making New Mexico the first state in the nation to provide $400,000 in life insurance coverage for New Mexico National Guardsmen on active duty.

● Lowered the income tax and tax on food, yet has balanced the budget and has given New Mexico one of the highest budget reserves in the United States.

● He has been tough on drunken driving, domestic violence and sex crimes.

● He has built a high-wage economy.

● He has developed a statewide water policy in a state where water is often scarce and a source of conflict.

● He has established a statewide pre-kindergarten program.


This is a small snapshot of what Governor Richardson has accomplished and why he should be the next President of the United States. Please read the whole article which makes a great case for Bill Richardson.

Hat tip to Missouri for Richardson.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Richardson Has Strong Showing in Nevada

Nevada Today has an informal poll up regarding who will win in 2008, and Governor Richardson has a strong showing in second place, only 3 votes behind the leader. He finishes ahead of Hillary Clinton, Barak Obama, Al Gore, and others. This early support in Nevada is important, since the state goes to the polls early on in the primary season.

Nevada is a Western state, with a growing latino population, and if anyone understands the issues of Nevadans, it's Bill Richardson. As former Secretary of Energy he understands Nevada's problems with the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository. As a Latino, he can relate to Nevada's growing Latino population. As governor of a Western state, Richardson understands the issues that come with the geography of the West, such as arid land and a need for water for growing populations. There are so many reasons why Nevada should vote for Richardson. But I'm not here to make the case for Nevada, after all, this is Washington for Richardson.

Hat tip to upnorth at Nevada Up North.

Richardson Rises in Survey USA Approval Ratings

In the latest edition of the Survey USA Approval Ratings for all 50 Governors, Governor Richardson has risen to number 7 with a 74% approval rating.

That's not just Democrats in New Mexico who are approving of the job the Governor is doing, and it's 5 percentage points higher than Richardson's election day tally.

Check out this chart to see how Governor Richardson's approval has been rising with New Mexicans since May 2005.

New PoliticalDerby.com Power Rankings Released

The new 2008 power rankings for Presidential contenders by PoliticalDerby.com were released earlier today, and Governor Richardson is continuing to rise, checking in at #4. Here's what they say about him:

Richardson has been steadily moving through the pack since recovering from the gaffe over his professional baseball career, or lack thereof. He’s showing some teeth, getting active online, and his resume is unmatched on the track. Still, some are wondering whether he has the discipline for a two-year national campaign. If he finds his message and rhythm, the Tip Sheet predicts he sticks with the lead horses at least through the fall of ‘07.


Candidates of note below Governor Richardson include: John Kerry (#10), Wes Clark (#8), Al Gore (#7), Russ Feingold (#6, even though he isn't running), and Evan Bayh (#5). It's also interesting to note that out of the 10 contenders, Bill Richardson is one of 3 contenders viewed as being on his way up. The rest are in a holding pattern or on their way down.

Monday, November 20, 2006

In New Mexico: Drive Hammered, Get Nailed

The New York Times reported today that Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) will be announcing a campaign to change the laws of 49 states to require that first-time DUI offenders must install an ignition interlock on their cars. Guess who was leading the way in the one state to already require such devices on offenders' vehicles? That's right, Governor Bill Richardson and New Mexico.

Last year New Mexico became the first to make them mandatory after a first offense. With that tactic and others, the state saw an 11.3 percent drop in alcohol-related fatalities last year.

[...]

“It is an integral part of our success,” said Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico, who thinks others should follow his state’s lead.

[...]

Even the Century Council, a trade association of liquor distillers, says it favors the New Mexico approach for first offenders, but only those caught with blood-alcohol levels far above the legal threshold.


New Mexico is also in the forefront of new technologies designed to keep drunks from driving.


A New Mexico company, TruTouch Technologies, is modifying a technique developed for measuring blood chemistry in diabetics and using it to measure alcohol instead. The appliance shines a light through the skin on the forearm and analyzes what bounces back.

Future devices may read alcohol content when a driver’s palm touches the steering wheel or the gear shift lever, said Jim McNally, the chief executive of TruTouch.


It's never paid to drink and drive, but Bill Richardson has made it safer for New Mexicans on the road, by hindering those who would attempt to do so.

The Governor pointed to bold actions undertaken during his administration on DWI, including requiring all DWI offenders to install ignition interlock devices in their vehicles; increasing the number of DWI Super Blitzes from five to eight; the Five Counties Program, which, thanks to assistance from NHTSA, specialized DWI officers have been hired in the five New Mexico counties where DWI has historically been the deadliest; and the statewide media campaign launched to educate and inform New Mexicans about the dangers and risks of driving while under the influence of alcohol.


In New Mexico, if you've had too much to drink, you'd better think twice before getting behind the wheel. If you drive hammered, you will get nailed.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Join the Conversation

If you'd like to support Bill Richardson for President, or learn more about him, join the conversation at the Bill Richardson 2008 group on Yahoo.

We've also set up a Bill Richardson group at Zanby, where you can meet like-minded Washingtonians who support Bill Richardson. Feel free to join us there.

The Fix Thoughts on 2008

Chris Cillizza at the Washington Post has posted some thoughts on 2008 at The Fix, in response to a chat he held online. Here is what he said about Bill Richardson:

On paper, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson may be the most impressive candidate in the Democratic 2008 field. He has been a congressman, cabinet secretary, ambassador and governor -- a resume that few in elected office can match. Plus, Richardson is Hispanic, which, in the eyes of many party strategists, gives him a unique ability to speak to this increasingly influential voting bloc. So why isn't Richardson a frontrunner for his party's nod? Put simply: Discipline -- or lack thereof. To Richardson's credit, he has ridden his large personality to considerable political success, but real questions remain as to whether he can stand up to intense national media scrutiny that would come with a White House bid. For now, I have Richardson ranked No. 5 on The Fix's presidential Line.


Memo to Chris: 2008 isn't here yet, and it remains to be seen if any of the candidates can stand up to the intense national scrutiny that comes with a White House Bid. So if you're being a fair, impartial journalist, shouldn't Bill Richardson get the benefit of the doubt. He should be higher in your rankings.

Npte to Readers: I did submit this last paragraph as a comment on The Fix. We'll see if Chris Cillizza has any response.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Richardson Profile on Daily Kos

DailyKos diarist Romaniac posted a nice profile piece on Governor Richardson over at Daily Kos. Go read it and recommend if you so choose.

Netroots Effort for Richardson Gears Up

It seems we've been noticed and the secret is out of the bag. Heath Haussamen, a New Mexico blogger, has noticed all of the "for Richardson" blogs that are popping up.

If activity on the Bill Richardson for President Yahoo! Group is any indication, the New Mexico governor’s presidential campaign is gaining traction.

The group currently has 123 members from across the nation. Though a few blogs promoting a Richardson 2008 run already existed, its members have started additional blogs in several states since he was overwhelmingly re-elected governor last week.

Such blogs now exist in Colorado, Florida, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Mexico, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia and Washington.


That's right, more people are becoming interested in helping elect Governor Richardson to be our next President. Even U.S. News and World Report has taken notice of the netroots support for Governor Richardson, with its Washington Whispers column noticing the work being done at America for Richardson.

And as we spread our message we hope that more people will join our movement to elect Governor Richardson.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Happy Birthday Governor Richardson

Washington for Richardson would like to wish Governor Richardson a very happy 59th birthday today.

Now blow out those candles and wish for the Presidency. :)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Bill Richardson: He's Done It, They Haven't

Dropping knowledge on us like Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Ian over at the Bill Richardson Blog bring us "The Message" and very quickly answer the question: why Bill Richardson? (And yes, that was an old-school hip-hop reference) The message: You've done it, they haven't.

On foreign policy: you’ve done it. They haven’t. You’ve stood toe-to-toe with the nastiest dictators in the world and gotten what you wanted. You’ve been tapped by Democratic and Republican Presidents alike when America has been in a jam. When our sons and daughters overseas needed you, you’ve been there. You’ve done it. They haven’t.

On governing, as an executive: you’ve done it. They haven’t. You’ve corralled a legislature, signed bills into law, set agendas, and been an executive. Your opponents will be some of the best legislators this country has to offer, but we’re electing a Chief Executive. Everyone’s got a favorite President; who’s yours? Maybe you love FDR, former Governor of New York. Maybe you love Reagan, former Governor of California. Bill Clinton balanced a budget because he’d learned how in the governor’s mansion. You’ve governed as an executive. They haven’t.

On balanced budgets: you’ve done it. They haven’t. Your state has a balanced budget and one of the biggest budget reserves in the country. You can do that for America, because you’ve done it in New Mexico. No need to accept it on faith; you’ve already proven it.

On energy. On education. On health care. On managing federal agencies. On issue after issue, you’ve done it; they haven’t.

As I've said before, there is no substitute for experience.

Chris Matthews to Profile Governor Richardson

From Broadcasting & Cable:

Beginning Nov. 19, The Chris Matthews Show, the weekend, half-hour roundtable public affairs series produced by NBC News and syndicated by NBC Universal, is launching an eight-part series of profiles of potential candidates.

Governor Richardson will be one of the eight candidates profiled. Check your local listings.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Why Hillary Should Be Dismissed As a Candidate In 2008

Here's one reason why Senator Hillary Clinton should be dismissed immediately as a serious candidate for President in 2008.

Courtesy of Kos:

One of the failures of 2006 was the inability of Spitzer and Hillary, as cash-flush as they were, to finally put their state's Republican Party out of its misery
.

Democrats did relatively little to try to take the Senate. They put some of their star power behind their State Senate candidates -- Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and Mr. Spitzer stumped for Ms. Stewart-Cousins -- but did little to share the wealth that poured into the campaign coffers at the top of the ticket. Republicans, by contrast, raised money at a furious clip for their Senate candidates.

The New York State Senate Republican Campaign Committee raised more than $7 million this year, taking in more than $1 million in the past two weeks. The Democrats raised less than $2 million for their campaign committee this year, according to campaign finance reports filed with the State Board of Elections.


So while Hillary and Elliot Spitzer were in a race to see who could get the higher percentage, Governor Richardson was out stumping on behalf of Democratic governors and passing out checks which led to 28 Democratic governors at the end of election night. While Bill Richardson was working hard on behalf of Democratic candidates, Hillary Clinton was hoarding the money, building her war chest, and not helping her fellow Democrats.

Who would you rather have as President, the candidate who works for the common good, or the candidate who cares only for herself? Bill Richardson wins in a landslide.

"Bulletproof Candidate"

I'm sure others have noted the historical endorsement the Roswell Daily Record made of Governor Bill Richardson. I think the text of the endorsement bears repeating, because it's true no matter what position Richardson is running for.

"Bill Richardson is a political juggernaut the likes of which have not been seen in New Mexico for a long time. Love him or hate him, he's a man with a vision and he's driven to see it come to fruition. Add to that his diverse political experience, multitude of connections and his ability to put the state on the map during his numerous appearances on cable news networks, and you end up with a bulletproof candidate." [emphasis mine]


Not only did the Roswell Daily Record endorse its first Democratic candidate for governor in recent memory, it endorsed Governor Richardson in such a way that emphatically underscores that he's a great candidate for President.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

U.S. News & World Report Highlights America for Richardson

U.S. News & World Report has a brief note in its Washington Whispers column this week, highlighting our friends over at America for Richardson.

Now on the Web, Oval Office Hopes


He's the popular New Mexico governor who has done stints in Congress, the United Nations, and the Energy Department, so it's about time Bill Richardson had a website promoting him for president. Well, americaforrichardson.org is up and running, and its webmaster, former Richardson aide Jeff Gulko, says the goal is to get 2008's lone Hispanic hopeful elected president. It might be working. Democrat Richardson tells us he's mulling over a January announcement and says, "I've got something to offer."


That's what it's all about from our viewpoint: making enough noise to help raise Governor Richardson's profile and assist him in a potential candidacy for President of the United States.

Joe Trippi on Bill Richardson

Joe Trippi, who ran Howard Dean's 2004 Presidential campaign, had this to say about Governor Richardson:

A Resume to Die For: Bill Richardson

He'd be the first Hispanic to make a presidential run, and his resume covers nearly every issue, foreign or domestic. Need bold ideas on immigration? New Mexico Gov. Richardson has grappled with that. Ideas on energy? Ask former energy secretary Richardson. How to deal with a nuclear North Korea? Former U.N. ambassador Richardson knows the turf. But can he raise the money, and earn enough early support to get his ideas into the mix?


Once again, I say, there is no substitute for experience. George W. Bush has proven that.

Feingold is Out

Senator Russ Feingold has joined Governor Mark Warner on the sidelines of the 2008 Presidential contest.


Sen. Russ Feingold will not seek his party's presidential nomination in 2008, the Wisconsin Democrat told the Journal Sentinel on Saturday.

"I never got to that point where I'd rather be running around the country, running for president, than being a senator from Wisconsin," Feingold said in a phone interview from Madison.

Feingold, 53, conceded that he faced long odds of winning the nomination.

"It would have required the craziest combination of things in the history of American politics to make it work," he said.

But Feingold said waging an underdog campaign appealed to him. What didn't appeal to him, he said, was "the way in which this effort would dismantle both my professional life (in the Senate) and my personal life. I'm very happy right now."


With Feingold and Warner out, Bill Richardson remains the only candidate who can appeal to Democrats and independent voters. I don't see Hillary picking up too many of those swing votes, nor John Edwards (forget about all of the other candidates, they're done). And with his pro-business stances, Richardson is very likely to pick up some dissatisfied Republicans too. That's not to mention Richardson's extensive foreign policy experience, which outweighs that of all the other potential candidates. With Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, and North Korea in the forefront, Americans will want someone who has the experience to effectively deal with foreign relations. Bill Richardson has continually proven that he has the gravitas and experience in those areas to lead America as a positive, contributing member of the global community, and not the bully that George W. Bush and his cronies have created.

There is no substitute for experience, and Bill Richardson is clearly the class of the 2008 field.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

2008 Candidate Profiles in Congressional Quarterly

Craig Crawford of CQ Weekly has posted profiles of all of the previously named potential candidates for the Presidency in 2008. Overall, he's pretty positive about Governor Richardson:

Bill Richardson — Governor, New Mexico

Rationale: For starters, ethnicity and geography argue in favor of Richardson, a Latino governor in a battleground state that backed Al Gore in 2000 but George W. Bush in 2004. Add to that his varied Washington experience — 14 years in the House plus four years in the Clinton administration, first as U.N. ambassador and then as Energy secretary — and on paper you have the ingredients for national office. Richardson is a larger-than-life character who is charming on the stump. On policy matters, he is a pragmatist who remains quite popular in his politically fluid state, recently winning kudos for making good on a 2003 campaign promise to save taxpayers $90 million in state budget costs. Governors do well in presidential contests, which is enough of a reason to consider Richardson a player.

Resources: Richardson raised more than $8 million for his bid for a second term as governor this year, a sizable sum in New Mexico politics. And his shoo-in standing in that race has allowed him to spread his money around to other Democrats in the state, always good for earning chits to solidify his home-state base in a presidential campaign. Also, the bulk of his campaign funds come from business interests instead of big labor, a good talking point for any Democrat in a general-election bid.

Hobby Horse: Richardson earned foreign- policy credentials as the ambassador to the United Nations, troubleshooting hot spots from Iraq to North Korea, and he also can emphasize his popular management of New Mexico and tout what is expected to be a lopsided re-election victory.

Hobble Horse: Richardson’s closet is not entirely clean. At a minimum, a presidential bid will again bring to light his brush with the Monica Lewinsky scandal, in which he reportedly offered her a job, and revelations that for years he erroneously claimed to have been drafted as a pitcher by the Kansas City A’s.


Now that re-election is out of the way, let's hope the focus soon shifts to the money that Governor Richardson needs to raise in 2007 and to lay the groundwork for a presidential campaign.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Governor Richardson Overwhelmingly Re-Elected

So what of those 68% that the ABQ Journal poll found Governor Richardson to be honest? Well, they just went out and re-elected him. From the Washington Post:

N.M. Governor Results
Candidate Votes %
Bill Richardson * (D) 373,926 69%
John Dendahl (R) 170,352 31%
Key: * Incumbent | Red Checkmark Winner
Precincts: 100% | Updated: 2:28 PM ET | Source: AP

I'm Back

Posting has been light here because I've been out doubling our Democratic majority in the Washington State Senate. Posting will now resume.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Republican Dirty Tricks in NM

As things get worse for Republicans nationally, we're starting to see that they are reverting to whatever means necessary to hold onto power. In New Mexico, this means using GOP dirty trick #1: voter disenfranchisement. The Plaza has the details:

After receiving sworn affidavits from voters who were deliberately and repeatedly given incorrect information on voting locations in Albuquerque by the Republican Party and related organizations, District Judge Vanzi is considering a temporary restraining order which would ban the Republican Party from contacting voters who are not registered Republicans. The evidence suggests an active strategy aimed at confusing and disenfranchising minority, Green, and Democratic voters. A hearing will be scheduled tomorrow in response to a Democratic complaint.

[...]

All voters should be warned that false information is being spread in an apparent desperate attempt to win the election through confusing and potentially illegal actions. There are other reports of similar calls to Democrats throughout Albuquerque.


These desperate, pathetic attempts by Republican operatives to hold on to whatever power they might have, are not only illegal but antithetical to our democracy. These tactics are precisely what our government lectures other countries about when they conduct elections. And Governor Bill Richardson is standing up to these Republican operatives and standing up for the rights of voters.

"Americans cherish their right to vote, and this attempt to disenfranchise New Mexican voters is an affront to our Democracy. This political dirty trick violates the spirit of the American system as well as state and federal laws," said Governor Bill Richardson.


If you see something that you don't think is right with regard to voting in your area, please contact your county auditor or your local Democratic party office and let them know. We have to be vigilant because as we've seen before, Republicans will do anything to win elections.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Arizona...

While campaigning for Gabrielle Giffords, Democratic candidate for Congress in AZ-08, Governor Richardson picked up the support of Daniel Patterson.

Bill Richardson should run for President in 08. He has a wealth of effective experience and would be attractive to left and center voters.

If Richardson does run, he'll have my support.


We'd like to see Daniel start up Arizona for Richardson and help build support there.