Saturday, February 16, 2008

New York Times on Jim Amann

Local Times reporter Cindy Boynton wrote this article for tomorrow's Regional edition, titled "A Run for Governor, Rough Edges Included":
Followers of Connecticut politics may have already noticed some similarities between James A. Amann, the House speaker, and former Gov. William A. O’Neill.

Like Mr. O’Neill, governor from 1980 to 1991, Mr. Amann (pronounced AIM-en) is a conservative Democrat. Both served as House majority leader. Both owned taverns and attended, but never graduated from, college. Mr. O’Neill sold life insurance; Mr. Amann made a living selling cars and cellphones.

Mr. O’Neill, who died in November, was the state’s last Democratic governor. Mr. Amann, 51, hopes to be the next.

Representing Milford’s 118th District since 1991, Mr. Amann recently announced the formation of an exploratory committee for the 2010 race for governor.
The reporter called and interviewed me about Jim:
Working against him, however, are a handful of bloggers who are critical of his personality and politics. Several of them stood outside Mr. Amann’s announcement for governor with a rented hearse and signs that read “Amann D.O.A.”

Their main gripe is Mr. Amann’s decision to back Senator Joseph I. Lieberman, an independent, rather than the Connecticut Democratic primary winner, Ned Lamott, in 2006, said 49-year-old Bob Adams of Milford. Mr. Adams, a network engineer who runs, was also part of the protest group at Mr. Amann’s announcement. (emphasis mine)

Mr. Adams said he believes that “Jim Amann is not as decisive a leader as we deserve.” He added, “I see him as a political machine-type who can have some pretty raw moments.”

While Mr. Amann said he sometimes, and “regrettably,” has a short temper, he wished people like Mr. Adams would take the time to get to know him.

“They’d see that underneath everything, I’m really a big softie,” Mr. Amann said. “And I think I’m good at what I do. If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be still in Hartford.”
I think it's awesome that they put up the link to my blog in the article, but I thought I'd made it clear to the reporter that I was there as a member of the Milford DTC; and while I knew the bloggers outside, I wasn't a part of their protest.

The quotes in the article are accurate, however. It still rankles me that Amann betrayed his party and worked his ass off to help Lieberman remain in the Senate. I don't care how big a "softie" he purports to be, what he did was wrong, plain and simple.

For a guy who owes his entire political career to the Democratic party, he sure didn't hesitate to work against it.

Since then, Joe Lieberman has gone on to vote FOR domestic spying, FOR keeping our troops in Iraq, FOR allowing torture, and he's endorsed and is actively campaigning FOR Republican John McCain for president.

Yup. That worked out really well, didn't it Jim?


Anonymous said...

"political machine type". wouldnt the political machine type back the democratic party candidate instead of supporting the person he actually wants?

CT Bob said...

Actually, I was referring to his backing Lieberman because of personal loyalty rather than listening to the will of the voters. His choices should reflect what the majority of his party wants, not his sense of political patronage. That's the "machine" I was referring to.

Same thing goes for the super delegates. They should support what the voters want. I guess it's a radical concept, having elected officials following the will of the people they represent, but I always hope for the best.

Anonymous said...

This NYT reporter is an IDIOT.

O'Neil new every Town Chairman and their spouse by their first and last name,How many kids they had and what they drank.

Amann couldn't even get an invite to address most DTC's and the comparison is an insult to O'Neil and anyone who pays attention to politics in Ct.

Cynthia Wolfe Boyton either lives in Milford and needs a favor from the Speaker or is a fiction writer.

Anonymous said...

"[H]e wished people like Mr. Adams would take the time to get to know him."

Ah, yes. I see the two of you lingering over a candlelight dinner, walking the beach at sunset, maybe even sharing some cotton candy during a lazy Sunday afternoon at the zoo. The imagery is flashing through my mind, accompanied by this tune:

CT Bob said...

Amann totally missed the irony about me "taking the time to get to know him", when his biggest goddamned beef about Lamont was that Ned only called him once, and apparently didn't beg Jim to let him bow and kiss his ring. I guess it's way more important for ME to get to know JIM than it was for JIM to get to know the winner of the goddamned Democratic PRIMARY!


So how about this? Let's have Jimmy sit down with ME for a video interview to discuss his views and his record, and maybe he'll get to know ME a little better?

Great song, but I'll pass on the candlelight dinner...

Anonymous said...

Connecticut Bob's attempt at a remake of the 1949 classic Film "All the Kings Men" was admirable. Unfortunately, if he had a better budget, he could have moved the cast up to Essex Ct and rented the Old Railway cars, and had Amann's Broderick Crawford/ Willie Stark character mess his hair up a bit more. What could have been even more gutsy if he took a risk and filmed the scenes in black and white. And had Amann keep to the original script, instead of saying I'll crush anyone who runs against me, he should have stuck to the I'm going to crush anyone with my bare hands. Connecticut Kieth gave a command performance of Dolph Pills bury, and Cindy Boyton's performance of Jack Burden the newspaper reporter who assists the Hick turned bully Governor was a little weak at times, but overall the film gets a c plus. Overall, the remake of a Gov. Huey Long type character( Amann) into Billy O'Neil is a stretch , it strains credulity. The film does have some grittiness, and Amann does give a great performance and might have been better had the make up artist left him alone and not tucked in his shirt, shaved him, he could have been a bit more naturally disheveled like Broderick Crawford which Amann is in real life.

CT Bob said...

Wow, what a fine review!

I'm thinking of releasing the movie on a special edition DVD, with director's commentary and special features, such as a "making-of" documentary and hysterical outtakes. Coming soon.

Would you mind submitting your review to IMDB? You can find my listing by searching for "Blog Wars", then look for Connecticut Bob. :)

Anonymous said...

Sometimes a director has to work within a budget. If Ct Bob had the funding, the film may have gained better reviews,it remains however, better than Mike Moore's attempt at interviewing poor people whom have stomachs growling and have to look at this 400 lb water buffalo trudging around with Mac Donald wrappers stuck on the heels of his shoes interviewing sick people. My advise to Ct Bob is keep up his good work and take a film crew out and begin a new project , remix, of a Sergio Lenoni's the Good, the Bad and the Ugly and Pale Rider.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand how attacking someone who then gets mad at you and says something off the cuff like "I'll crush whoever runs against me," can be considered insightful. While really funny, it tells me very little about anything, other than you were hounding him and he got mad. So what?

In addition everyone is always going crazy about politicians playing ‘party’ politics against the good of the country. Well Amann supported a friend who helped him when he first started in politics. I'd say that was a tough and courageous decision. While I didn't agree with his support for Lieberman it’s hard for me to say it was wrong and it certainly wasn't the standard 'party’ politics.

I also don't think Amann's support helped Lieberman win. Lieberman won with Independents and Republicans not Dems. Lamont, for all the good he did for the national dialog, was a new name, with little experience who ran a poor campaign after the primary. (He went on vacation for two weeks!)

So your anger towards Amann seems more like a personal vendetta that he hasn't invited you over for coffee instead of substantive policy differences. I understand that you hate Liebernmann, we all do, but you can’t define Amann for that one moment. By doing this you mirror Fox News when it went after Howard Dean’s now infamous “Heaarrhh!!” Also did anyone know just how far off the bus Joe was going to go? I didn’t vote for him, but I really didn’t know he was this awful.

I agree that Amann can be cantankerous and shoot from the hip but I think it makes him more human, not the typical talking head. I also think most people are sick of politicians who play it safe and really say nothing. Amann is clearly not just mouthing the party line like.

Amann is also remarkably flexible with his caucus allowing issues he doesn't agree with to go to votes in the House (…civil unions, abolishing the death penalty, etc.) What other Speaker did that? That shows me he's behind his party and is secure enough in himself that he can take some heat.

In conclusion he’s exhibited loyalty, beyond and to, his party and has been decisive and courageous when making tough choices. So even if I disagree with some of his moments I have to respect the guy and state that he’s a strong candidate for governor, certainly better than what we currently have.

Anonymous said...

First off, Connecticut Bob, nor any of the liberal Ned Lamont bolt heads wrote this movie review on Mr. James Arthur Amann. Standing on a loading dock acting like the Mayor of Stupid Town may impress you and the other 200 dim bulbs congregated in a room where he was crushed by Mayor Fred Lisman, or the other Milford candidate for Governor Tom Scott whom crushed homeboy, in his Hometown, where he grew up, what makes anyone think that this guy can win an election outside his own district when he has already lost twice? Crushed twice? Because his party does not have the brains to elect someone who does have the same views as they do?