Saturday, March 08, 2008

Senate Endorsements

I've been encouraged from a couple quarters to make endorsement in the Merkely/Novick race and I will at this time make this endorsement, we've got two real good guys running and it's time to start taking their measure. They need some bucks to make their play so getting some of that out there would be a good idea. I've done some bit for the campaigns and I'm still looking and kicking tires. It is embarassing that it was easier to pick a Presidential candidate, who is now gone and I've moved on, than it is to pick a Senatorial Candidate. It certainly isn't that one race is more important or more on my mind, it is that the choice was clearer.

That says a lot about the caliber of men we have running, these guys each make such a great candidate in their own specific ways without disqualifying policy statements that a political junky like me is stuck. I'll point out what I see as each one's most distinct advantage with the qualification that neither is a deal maker for me. I expect to see each grow into the role as time passes.

Jef Merkley has a good organization, they're good at what they're doing and have significant backing. This is a real plus for a campaign, boy do I know what a plus. Some serious hitters in the current political scene are on board and the machinery seem well oiled.

Steve Novick has an edge when it comes to rhetoric. He's sharp, witty, and appropriately abrasive when called for and able to lay out a personable reasoned discourse when called for. It is never of any doubt that you're in the presence of a fighter and an opponent better come well armed. That fighter aspect properly gets less play in regard to Merkley, but a Gordon Smith will get no quarter.

If you take these minor reccommendations as criticism of the other candidate, back the train up. I'm talking about what seem the most outstanding advantage of each as of now. Jeff Merkley is an excellent speaker, particularly in the presentation of a personable concerned individual. Steve Novick's organization is not crippled, it has in fact been quite successful.

I have minor policy quibbles with each, neither has managed to create an advantage with me in that respect. If I have a major problem, it is with both and it is that neither proposes that it is required to make illegal hiring sincerely unattractive for employers to indulge in. There is quite frankly no matter more important in blue collar employment than having your wages gutted and hiring opportunities slashed by the presence of people with no legal business in the market. Health care falls off the radar when the problem is having a job or meeting very modest bills because you are in competition with illegal labor. In the face of ruinous fines and jail time and real enforcement the practice will stop and we will gain control of the labor market and be able to set reasonable immigration policies to fill vacant employment slots. I really have no idea why Democrats can't seem to get that one, but they don't and the Republicans just play closet racists.

Gordon Smith needs to go back to Pendleton and play with frozen peas, I'm sure he'll get to wear his nice clothes. Meanwhile we Democrats need to back our guys and sort them out. Giving them financial support and time to show what they've got will result in being able to make a decision superior to eenie, meenie, minee, moe; caught a Gordo by the toe. There are contribution buttons on the sideboard, use one or both.


portlandia said...

Hey Chuck, thanks for the kind words about Steve Novick.

I wanted to call your readers' attention to what Steve says on his website about cracking down on employers of illegal workers. I hope this is helpful.

Here's a quote from his website:

By the same token, I support comprehensive reform that includes:
A path to legal residence for some of those already in the country and have no other criminal violations – though I believe they should pay a fine to acknowledge that they did break the law, and pay any back taxes owed;
Real employer sanctions to punish those who exploit undocumented workers and drive down wages for citizens and legal residents, strengthened border enforcement;
Repeal of NAFTA and adoption of new trade policies designed to raise living standards everywhere;
A reexamination of guest worker programs, to ensure that guest workers have full legal rights (including the right to organize), that the programs will not have the effect of suppressing wages for native workers, and that any guest worker programs be limited to industries that can show a unique need that truly cannot be met otherwise; and
An opportunity for children who were brought to this country without documentation before they turned 16 and have graduated high school to serve in our armed forces or earn a college degree.
The goal must be to improve wages here and abroad – not reduce them in the pursuit of the biggest profits. With a little common sense and compromise, I believe we can work together to achieve immigration reform that makes sense for America and the world.

Chuck Butcher said...

It gets into a neighborhood, but it's weak and that won't do. There are laws on the books already, see what good that's done.