Friday, July 20, 2007

Milford Democratic Convention endorses candidates

(From the Connecticut Post, 7/18/07 MEG BARONE, Correspondent)
MILFORD — Promising to provide tax relief to city veterans and the elderly, improve infrastructure and create even better schools, Alderman Kerri Rowland accepted the nomination as the Democratic mayoral candidate Wednesday.

Kerri Rowland will campaign to unseat incumbent Republican Mayor James L. Richetelli Jr.

(Alderman Kerri Rowland with House Speaker James A. Amann)

"The status quo is not good enough. We can do better; we must do better," Rowland said to a crowd of about 250 people at City Hall, where Democrats selected a slate of candidates for Board of Aldermen, Board of Education, Planning and Zoning Board and constable in each of the five districts.

Rowland was nominated by state Sen. Gayle Slossberg, while Speaker of the House James Amann nominated Alan Jepson for city clerk, calling the former three-term mayor "the political gold standard [who] engenders universal respect and appeal."

(Venerable Milford City Clerk Alan Jepson)

Democrats entered City Hall through a gauntlet of young girls who distributed colorful pro-Rowland signs, which the audience waved wildly when Rowland responded to the unanimous vote for her candidacy, "Thank you for the nomination. I accept."

(Colorful signs decorate the packed hall)

"Kerri has the unique ability to problem solve, to get things done," Slossberg said.

The nominating convention was short on surprises but did not lack in ceremony. Members of a local Boy Scout troop presented the colors, Rev. Carleton Giles delivered the invocation asking for blessings on "those who aspire to lead us to further greatness," and the 10-voice Coastal Chordsmen sang the national anthem and other selections.

After a brief caucus of district members, which seemed merely a formality, Democratic Party Chairman Richard Smith had each district chairman stand to present their slate of candidates, which was followed by a unanimous vote.

Smith thanked the candidates for their willingness to serve their community saying, "This is where the rubber meets the road."

April Moss Ellis brought her two daughters — Kayla Ellis, 10, and Sydney Ellis, 8 — to the political event. "I'm trying to help them understand the importance of the electoral process and we're here to give Kerri our support," Ellis said.


(The 2007 Milford Democratic candidates)

Board of Aldermen: Ray Arnold and incumbent James Patterson
Board of Education: Mike Taylor and Greta Stanford
PZB: Kathy Patterson

Board of Aldermen: Nick Veccharelli and Barbara Lambert, both are incumbents
Board of Education: Tracy Casey and Dave Steinlauf
PZB: Janet Golden, a former Republican who changed party affiliation at the end of her term on the Board of Education. "More of my philosophies meshed with the Democratic Party and I found more of a home here."
Constable: Kevin McGrath Sr.

Board of Aldermen: incumbent Martin Hardiman and Susan Manning
Board of Education: Dave Bonder and Jim Quish
PZB: Kim Rose
Constable: Linda Hardiman

Board of Aldermen: Philip Vetro, incumbent, and Jessica Blackletter
Board of Education: Dave Amendola and Dave Hourigan, both are incumbents
PZB: Jennifer Carey
Constable: Claire Phelan

Board of Aldermen: Robert Nunno and incumbent minority leader Benjamin Blake
Board of Education: James Santa Barbara and David Defluneri
PZB: Victor Ferrante

(Photos by Bob Adams)

Friday, July 13, 2007

It's time for a break

During my recent vacation, I thought a lot about why I got into political blogging. I realized that I’ve been blogging for well over a year now without a significant break.

I started Connecticut Bob with one primary purpose, and that purpose was to do everything possible to help Ned Lamont win. I originally intended to bow out immediately following the November election. After the election, many of my colleagues urged me to keep the blog going. I agreed to continue for as long as possible. Lately however, I've been finding the effort of writing and maintaining the blog has become way too much of a chore instead of the fun and challenging hobby it was last year.

For instance, when I heard about Bush giving Libby a free pass for his crimes, my very first thought was, "Oh shit, now I gotta write something about it!" When that becomes my first reaction to a major story like that instead of excitement, it’s obviously time for me to take a break.

Maura told me “I think we all are learning in our own way that a sustained diet of outrage and injustice is just not healthy, even if the Bush administration, its cronies, and even some Democrats seem determined to feed us nothing else. But life is short, and we gotta have some balance.”

Because I don't run a community blog, it's impossible for me to simply hand over the reigns to anyone else. I find that I envy Branford Boy for his opportunity to exit gracefully from the daily grind of maintaining his blog. My Left Nutmeg continues to be a vibrant and informative blog. Sadly, I don't have that option.

I have a sailing blog that I still enjoy immensely, and I occasionally post on my filmmaking blog; and I've become active in local politics with being on the DTC here in Milford, so I've got plenty to keep me busy. And I'll post an occasional diary on MLN if I come up with something I think especially newsworthy. I'll still shoot videos when it's convenient or if something really big is happening. I'm not going to stop being a progressive activist or a blogger by any means.

But I really need a break. I'm going to keep the blog up indefinitely, and I'll post occasionally on matters of importance, and especially on Kerri Rowland's mayoral campaign. But I'm going to cut back on trying to post daily, which will relieve the burden quite a bit. Hopefully I'll be back in full swing sometime soon.

Thanks for reading, and I appreciate your support.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Kerri Rowland announces strong support

Press release from Kerri Rowland's campaign:

Kerri Rowland For Mayor Committee shows strong early support

MILFORD – Alderwoman Kerri Rowland (D-4) today released her fundraising numbers for the first period of her campaign for Mayor of Milford, showing receipts of $21,515.30. The period, the first of her newly formed committee for election covers April 10 through June 30, 2007.

“I am extremely pleased with the early support so many in our community have shown by donating to my campaign.” Kerri Rowland said. “I am so grateful to all the city leaders, the teachers, small business owners, realtors, retired citizens and others who believe in my campaign and who have joined with me in embracing the challenge of making this great city even better.”

Kerri Rowland, who announced her candidacy on May 10th, has made her priorities stopping the year-after-year tax increase, property tax relief for seniors and veterans, investing in our schools and protecting our children, implementing effective long-term planning and investment, and making public safety a priority again.

“Though I am proud of our fundraising abilities thus far, I am much more encouraged by the response I am getting at the doors and on the street when I am speaking with voters face-to-face.” Kerri Rowland continued, “The strength of our numbers and what I am hearing from voters and community leaders makes one thing perfectly clear – the people of Milford are looking for new and creative leadership and will not settle for the status quo.”

Facing an entrenched incumbent is always challenging, but the Kerri Rowland for Mayor Campaign will not cede any ground on fundraising, is mounting a strong door-to-door and grassroots campaign and has already received wide and active community support.

Residents are strongly urged to go to to make a contribution, for campaign updates, events, and other valuable information.

Bush impeachment push gaining momentum

Like most of you, I was astounded and angered by George Bush's obviously self-serving commutation of "Scooter" Libby's jail sentence. This transparent attempt to silence a convicted felon who has intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the White House and their illegal activities apparently has worked...for now.

But W's ersatz "pardon" has helped galvanize the "Impeach Bush" movement by making it exceedingly clear that nothing short of impeachment will stop this administration from continuing their unlawful actions.

Here in Connecticut a draft of an impeachment resolution has been championed by Harwinton Democratic Town Chair Myrna Watanabe and former Congressman Jim Maloney. The entire text of the resolution is quoted below.

Here's what YOU can do to help get this resolution introduced before the July 25th State Central Democratic Party meeting:

* Contact your local DTC chairperson and let them know you support this resolution.

* Tell them to contact all State Central members to express your support.

* Have them arrange for a proxy if they can't make the meeting to vote in support of the resolution.

This resolution will only be introduced if there's enough support for it to pass. Please help by contacting your Democratic Town Committee chairs and telling them to support it. Here's a link to After Downing Street where they discuss this resolution.

Section 603 of the Manual and Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives provides for impeachment to be initiated on a motion based on charges transmitted from a state legislature; and,

WHEREAS, President George W. Bush has committed high crimes and misdemeanors as he has repeatedly and intentionally violated the United States Constitution and other laws of the United States, particularly the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and the Torture Convention, which under Article VI of the Constitution, is a treaty as part of the supreme law of the land; and

WHEREAS, President George W. Bush has ordered at least thirty times the National Security Agency to intercept and otherwise record international telephone and other signals and communications by American citizens without warrants from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, duly constituted by Congress in 1978, in violation of constitutional guarantees of due process; and,

WHEREAS, President George W. Bush has admitted that he willfully and repeatedly violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and boasted that he would continue to do so, each violation constituting a felony; and,

WHEREAS, President George W. Bush's dereliction of his duty resulted in our country launching an attack on a people and nation that presented no imminent threat of attack, causing the death of more than 3,000 American service personnel as of June 1, 2007, the maiming of thousands more, and the death and injury of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi people, the destruction of their civil society and infrastructure, and the sullying of the honor of the United States of America; and,

NOW, THEREFORE, the Connecticut Democratic State Central Committee submits that his actions and admissions constitute ample grounds for his impeachment, and that the General Assembly of the State of Connecticut has good cause for submitting charges to the U.S. House of Representatives under Section 603 as grounds for President George W. Bush's impeachment.
The Connecticut Democratic State Central Committee further submits that Articles of Impeachment should charge that President George W. Bush has violated his constitutional oath to execute faithfully the office of President, and to the best of his ability, to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.

In all of this, George W. Bush has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President, subversive of constitutional government, to the great prejudice of the cause of law and justice, and to the manifest injury of the people of the State of Connecticut and of the United States.

WHEREFORE, be it Resolved: President George W. Bush by such conduct, warrants impeachment and trial, removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any offices of honor, trust, or profit under the United States Constitution.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Home sweet home!

Just got back from vacation.

I feel awesome! I gotta go on vacation more often.

Although, after living for eight straight days on a not-very-roomy 30' sailboat, you get to appreciate those little pleasures you have at home.

Like taking a 20-minute shower! Unlimited hot and cold running water. It's a real treat, let me tell you!

Anyway, I've got a whole week of email, blog reading, and phone calls to get back to. I'm going to attend to that and then maybe post something; if not tonight, then Monday.

Oh, and Kirby sends her regrets that she couldn't post anything last week; she fully intended to, and then real life interrupted as it often does.

Hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable 4th of July. We sure did!