Friday, February 16, 2007
Big Bill's Big Party; Calls It The "Largest Fund-Raising Event In State History," Plus: More On Heather & Pearce And The "Surge"
The Big Bill presidential campaign billed it as the "largest fund-raising event in New Mexico history." If they come anywhere close to raising the $2 million they said they would at the Sandia Casino & Resort event Thursday night, they will have it right. That $2 million would include not only money received in advance of last night's party, but also commitments made to the presidential campaign. As we blogged earlier, financial heavy-hitters were being asked to commit to raising as much as $25,000 each, if not more. The maximum individual donation for the nominating round in a Prez campaign is $2300.00 and there were a lot of those types in the big casino crowd crowing over Big Bill. It was also an "hackfest/appointee fest," according to one Alligator who emailed in from the scene.
Two million is a lot of cash, but in the twisted world of big-time presidential politics it is only seed money. Still, it reaffirms the Guv's star status in his home state and gives him walking around money for those numerous trips to Iowa and New Hampshire. We will get a fuller picture of his financial prospects when federal reports are filed at the end of the first quarter.
If Governor Richardson's soiree was the "largest fund-raiser" in state history, what was the previous record holder? We're not sure, but consulting with the Alligators turned up a 2000 event for Bush-Cheney in Mesilla, NM that swelled their campaign coffers by nearly a half-million bucks. And all that was raised in one day.
HEATHER AND THE SURGE
ABQ GOP Congresswoman Heather Wilson is against sending more troops to Baghdad, but not to Iraq. Huh? Under Bush's "surge" some 17,000 troops will be sent to Baghdad and 4,000 to hunt for al-Qaida operatives in Anbar province. Wilson now supports the Anbar deployment. In blogging Thursday on her decision to oppose a non-binding resolution opposing the additional Iraq troops, we said she was against sending any additional troops to Iraq. Confused yet?
PEARCE: HATE OR LOVE?
While Heather was hedging, GOP southern NM U.S. Rep Steve Pearce was back on the House Floor Thursday throwing red meat again. The day before he compared Bush to Lincoln. Now he is comparing the resolution to disapprove of the troop deployment to the Vietnam years. "They're (supporters of the resolution) doing the same thing that was done in Vietnam. They're trying to feed that hungry tiger that lives on the left that hates the American way of life; that hates the American military; that will do anything to discredit, disrespect, and discount...the service of our soldiers," Charged Pearce. (See the video here.)
But Steve, it appears many of your fellow R's are going to vote FOR the resolution. (It passed late Friday with 17 R's joing with the D's ) Guess you won't be hanging out with them in the cloakroom anymore. Pearce's heated, hard-right rhetoric (He even invoked "Hanoi Jane" in his speech) may play in the most ultra-conservative areas of his district, but even there they are sick of the no-end-in-sight-war.
Pearce may be right about one thing. Like Vietnam, the Iraq fiasco may end in disgrace, but the vast majority is united in wanting its end. The representative from Hobbs watched as he and his party were shunted into the minority in the November elections as people demanded change. He is now about to witness another marvel of democracy as the will of the American people ends this war, not unpatriotic leftists. It's not about hating America, congressman; it's about loving it.
THE BOTTOM LINES
This is a fascinating story about ex-ABQ District Court Chief Judge john Brennan and his dealings with a prisoner rehab program. It's from the Wall Street Journal and is must reading for the legal beagles.
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(c)NM POLITICS WITH JOE MONAHAN 2007
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