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Tiger Beat on the Potomac: Debbie Dingell testing waters for a Senate bid

by: Eric B.

Sat Apr 06, 2013 at 14:35:24 PM EDT


The sucking noise you hear is the sound of dampened enthusiasm.

Aiding Dingell in her deliberations are two prominent Democratic political strategists: former White House communications director Anita Dunn and former DSCC executive director J.B. Poersch.

Both are associated with the consulting firm SKD Knickerbocker; Dunn is a longtime adviser to John Dingell. Dunn and Poersch have acted as a kind of informal sounding board for Debbie Dingell as she weighs a statewide campaign.

I'm beginning to see the back half of a future post-election story ... "lost a seat held by retiring Sen. Carl Levin for more than three decades." Neither of these people have any experience listed working in Michigan.

Meanwhile...

“She’s seriously considering it and is obviously getting encouragement from important people in Michigan,” said one source close to Dingell. “She’s a known quantity in her own right in Michigan.”

No, she isn't. She's known within Democratic circles, and almost entirely within insider baseball Democratic circles, where as has been pointed out she has a reputation for high-handed, autocratic tendencies. As far as most voters are concerned, the last name Dingell is the same thing as the last name Romney.

To sum up ... to most uninvolved Michigan voters: Dingell=Romney.

It gets worse.

Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who passed on the Senate race earlier this year, also wants her party to avoid a primary, according to an aide.

“Governor Granholm is very excited about the names she’s heard so far and believes it would be wisest if Democrats could coalesce around the person that research shows is the best candidate,” spokeswoman Carole Polan Love said.

Heavy sigh.

Eric B. :: Tiger Beat on the Potomac: Debbie Dingell testing waters for a Senate bid
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Peter won't back down Unless (0.00 / 0)
His confident that he won't win, and his better off staying is his current seat. His a fighter and good campaigner, so he can beat Dingell if it came to a primary fight. Also I know of a lot of very good staffers, that either came up under him, or Brewer, many are unhappy about what it looks like really happen with the Chairmanship and Lon, that are more then willing to work and work very hard to see him elected, Dingell doesn't have that, and no National staffers parachuting in are going to help,or former Obama clowns.

The DSCC will almost certainly be involved (4.00 / 2)
The moment Levin announced his retirement, Michigan jumped to the top of everyone's target list. For the first time since 2000, we have a top-tier race on our hands.

Also, the chair race is over. It has been for six weeks. Whomever we supported, we need to move on.

Finally, I'm not sure what was meant by "former Obama clowns," but it's pretty hard to elect and re-elect a President with a team of clowns. Everyone in OFA worked like crazy to defeat the Romney machine.

Now on Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott: Hoadley, Moss Victories Prove LGBT Democrats Can Win Everywhere


[ Parent ]
what i meant by clowns. (0.00 / 0)
Is many of the more local Obama people were unprofessional and and utterly incapable of doing thiedjobs, also because of this they spent more time be mircomanaged then doing there jobs. Now, this was not all of the Obama , but at least the majority that I interacted with, should not be working in politics.

[ Parent ]
Rude. (0.00 / 0)
Well whatever you meant, it was rude.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
sir, i believe (0.00 / 0)
That was the point. I don't take people serious people who I watch count doors as contacts, or yelling at people that come into the office, when there were talking to another organizer about what they can do to help the campaign, because your in your office on a your 6th conference call of the day, and can't handle talking on the other side of a door.

On and on, at least at the local level I saw nothing but amateurs and clowns, from ofa, but again not all of them, there were a few ok people who knew what they were doing.

Not to mention the crap that was tried to be pulled state wide with lit, by trying to not use CC lit but just use Obama lit, during the last month.


[ Parent ]
Congratulations then. (0.00 / 0)
Your insights and observations are overshadowed by your name-calling.  

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
and it was not just me (0.00 / 0)
Many of my friends I've talk to have confirmed the same, by in large ofa  was unprofessional, and burned many local and long time activist, who have said they would be hesitant to work with a national Campaign ever again because of it.

Hence, Clowns

Now there were good things that ofa did/have they did bring in new people and had great voter Id program, but sadly we will not be getting anything but what IDs got put into the van, they took the whole kit and kaboodle and left town


[ Parent ]
Can't help but think (0.00 / 0)
this is just the rambling of a disgruntled volunteer. Never have I heard something like this. Oh, and OFA, by electing Obama twice, has been a smashing success.  

[ Parent ]
Presidential State Campaign Staff (0.00 / 0)
Can be arrogant twits. I've seem plenty of pay checks held back by the coordinated campaign for some of the "stunts" the presidential campaign staff has pulled.

[ Parent ]
Nepotism (4.00 / 5)
Most of us progressives/liberals/Democrats would agree that money in politics is a bad thing.

I have been following politics since Clinton was President and King John was Governor. Yet of all the times I have heard about Debbie Dingell, the first two things that come to mind with respect to Dingell are (a) her husband and (b) her money. Everything I have seen or heard about her indicates that she fits a profile that is over-represented in the halls of Washington.

Look, it's good that people like Debbie Dingell are able to contribute and to raise money for Democrats. The Good Lord knows we need that. But if we're serious about fixing DC and Lansing, we can't use elected offices as tools to reward big donors. We need to elect people who are able to do the job. While it's possible Debbie Dingell would be a very effective US Senator, I have seen little evidence that she would be.

Now on Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott: Hoadley, Moss Victories Prove LGBT Democrats Can Win Everywhere


THIS (4.00 / 4)
But if we're serious about fixing DC and Lansing, we can't use elected offices as tools to reward big donors. We need to elect people who are able to do the job. While it's possible Debbie Dingell would be a very effective US Senator, I have seen little evidence that she would be.

This.  It doesn't get any more clear than this to me.  We have a perfectly competent candidate in Gary Peters, so if you're going to challenge him, you better have some compelling reason to try and make a mess of a primary.

BTW, Granholm is right, whatever her motives.  I don't mind a competitive primary in which you have people of two expressing too very different views of the same party.  But, Gary Peters vs. Debbie Dingell is Gary Peters versus Debbie Dingell's money.  That's it.  We don't need that.

If Debbie Dingell could show me where she is far and above a more liberal candidate and with a better chance to win because she inspires more people than Gary Peters, sure, why not run?  But, she can't show me or anyone else that, because the only thing she has advertised - or at least the chatter from her support is being made known - is that she brings bags of cash.  She can't outflank Peters his pro-choice stance.  She can't outflank Peters on his support for the domestic auto industry.  And, on top of that, she's way too close to the NRA.  There is no compelling reason for her candidacy outside of her money.

Sorry.  I don't want anymore Conyers. I don't want anymore Dingells.  I don't want anymore Levins.  Let's start building a bench we've never really had.  Time to stop coasting.  We can do better than this, and I think ultimately, we will do better than this.


[ Parent ]
This basically sums up not only my reaction, but the near-universal reaction I've heard behind the scenes (4.00 / 1)
Every single time that there's been a big, looming knock-down dragout fight within the Democratic Party, statewide, I've been lobbied behind the scenes by supporters of both sides. I invariably have friends on both sides of the fight, and one of the reasons I won't endorse and that this site won't endorse is because of that. That includes Mark Brewer's people after I'd repeatedly said that the party needs a new chairman (after I'd spent months doing that, the Brewer people still took on a week-long sponsorship). And, I'm not just talking about people affiliated with a campaign, but from people who just support the candidate in general.

I have heard not one word from anyone who thinks this is a good idea. The behind-the-scenes chatter that I've been involved in has universally been, "No ... for the love of God, please don't run." Her campaign right now has the smell to it of being entirely consultant-driven, and not consultants that spend a lot of time working in Michigan, but friends of hers in Washington who think she can buy the race with money and her husband's last name.

I don't think a tough primary is necessarily a bad thing, as you noted, but in this case the primary would represent a competition between the sorts of behind-the-scenes power brokers who people wanted to see marginalized by bringing in a new chairman and the new names and faces people expected with a change in leadership.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Well as to the liberal part... (0.00 / 0)
Debbie Dingell is more liberal than Gary Peters overall I don't think too many people would disagree with that, but I could be wrong about the disagree part anyway.

I think she does alright on the pro-choice thing she does alright there.  Lots of Google talk so I tried it.  http://www.michigandaily.com/n...

She made her career at GM so she is pretty locked in with the auto industry.  

Ties to the NRA...I think repeating oneself is frowned on here, so I will just say, it would not be correct to say that DD is a friend of the NRA.  She holds the same position as the US Conference of Mayors.

I don't see well connected as a negative, and I don't share Eric's view that voters in the general would dismiss her out of hand because of her name.

She did found the National Women's Health Resource Center and it was her original work that addressed discrimination against women from inclusion of  mammograms, birth control and women in federally funded research. She organized and fought to address infant mortality in Michigan and her leadership help reduce the number in the 90's.  Bio assist credit to Google.

 


[ Parent ]
Last names... (0.00 / 0)
For the love of Pete, let's stick to what people have said rather than what we'd like to imagine they said for the purpose of strawman construction.

I didn't say the public would dismiss her because of her name. I said her name wasn't going to help her all that much, because the public, which is wary of political dynasties, doesn't elect people to office based on their relatives. Voters want someone who is obviously qualified in their own right. Again, the Republicans continuously demonstrate this by throwing Romneys into races, expecting the last name to carry them to victory ... and it never has.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
The Dingell name will help...in the 12th District (0.00 / 0)
Which is where Debbie will do the most good for everyone once John exits stage left.

A Senate campaign built on a foundation of called-in political markers and out-of-state consultants will be a gift to Republicans.

[Yes, of course Republicans do the exact same thing. But somehow when Democrats do it we get crushed. That's why the acronym IOKIYAR even exists as a meme.]


"The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity." ~ Harlan Ellison


[ Parent ]
The Republicans aren't always successful with this (0.00 / 0)
How many times do they look at a nomination for which there isn't an easy, obvious choice and think to throw a Romney at it. They never win.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
Last names... (0.00 / 0)
For the love of Pete, let's stick to what people have said rather than what we'd like to imagine they said for the purpose of strawman construction.

I didn't say the public would dismiss her because of her name. I said her name wasn't going to help her all that much, because the public, which is wary of political dynasties, doesn't elect people to office based on their relatives. Voters want someone who is obviously qualified in their own right. Again, the Republicans continuously demonstrate this by throwing Romneys into races, expecting the last name to carry them to victory ... and it never has.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Heavier sigh. (4.00 / 1)
Eric B., I don't usually comment on blogs (hence why I had to start an account tonight), but I feel personally compelled to do so after this post (even during the Michigan game). It's hard to stomach some of the things said here about the Dingell family. To many, Congressman Dingell is a bastion for Democratic values and has worked tirelessly for the progressive cause.

His father was an original author of social security and Medicare. Congressman Dingell carried on that fight and delivered. His influence on important issues runs deep: fighting for civil rights, clean water and air, workers rights, protecting American jobs, improving food and drug safety standards, strengthening consumer product safety, and many other areas.

Congressman Dingell wrote the Endangered Species Act, the 1990 Clean Air Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and legislation to build North America's first international wildlife refuge. He authored the Affordable Care Act, the Patient's Bill of Rights, the Children's Health Insurance Program, the Mammography Quality Standards Act, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, and the Prescription Drug User Fee Act.

I'm curious what Romney did that could equate.

I don't work for Debbie, but I know she has accomplishments in her own right. In working next to her, I can say she's someone who tells it like it is, fights for what she believes in, and delivers. Debbie is certainly a full partner in Congressman Dingell's affairs, and they operate as a team.

I've worked with Anita Dunn in Michigan too...so, there's that to your claim. She is highly capable and understands a lot about our state, its people and what they need. She's referred to as one of the nation's top political strategists, and any campaign she works with in the future will surely be viable.

Full disclosure: I work for Congressman Dingell as his District Administrator. While many find others to post, I thought it important to post myself (mostly because I'm lazy during the game). Anyways, I have a high respect for the work both Dingells do for our state, and they regularly show thanks to their hardworking staff and volunteers across the state. Let's show them both a little in return here. Go blue!



John Dingell ain't running for the Senate (4.00 / 1)
Eric B., I don't usually comment on blogs (hence why I had to start an account tonight), but I feel personally compelled to do so after this post (even during the Michigan game). It's hard to stomach some of the things said here about the Dingell family. To many, Congressman Dingell is a bastion for Democratic values and has worked tirelessly for the progressive cause.

His father was an original author of social security and Medicare. Congressman Dingell carried on that fight and delivered. His influence on important issues runs deep: fighting for civil rights, clean water and air, workers rights, protecting American jobs, improving food and drug safety standards, strengthening consumer product safety, and many other areas.

Congressman Dingell wrote the Endangered Species Act, the 1990 Clean Air Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and legislation to build North America's first international wildlife refuge. He authored the Affordable Care Act, the Patient's Bill of Rights, the Children's Health Insurance Program, the Mammography Quality Standards Act, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act, and the Prescription Drug User Fee Act.

I'm curious what Romney did that could equate.

John Dingell is also not running for the Senate. That would be his wife who is considering a run. John Dingell's accomplishments and especially his father are entirely irrelevant, especially to independent voters who don't like political dynasties.

I don't work for Debbie, but I know she has accomplishments in her own right. In working next to her, I can say she's someone who tells it like it is, fights for what she believes in, and delivers. Debbie is certainly a full partner in Congressman Dingell's affairs, and they operate as a team.

Name one that says, "Debbie Dingell is not just trying to trade in on her husband's name, and if she didn't have the Dingell last name, this is why you'd elect her to the Senate." The truth is that there is no reason beyond her last name why she's currently positioned to be in contention. Do you know who that bothers? Liberal voters, who don't like political dynasties. Also, independents.

I've worked with Anita Dunn in Michigan too...so, there's that to your claim. She is highly capable and understands a lot about our state, its people and what they need. She's referred to as one of the nation's top political strategists, and any campaign she works with in the future will surely be viable.

This is why her firm has a fully staffed Detroit office. Oh, wait.

Full disclosure: I work for Congressman Dingell as his District Administrator. While many find others to post, I thought it important to post myself (mostly because I'm lazy during the game). Anyways, I have a high respect for the work both Dingells do for our state, and they regularly show thanks to their hardworking staff and volunteers across the state. Let's show them both a little in return here. Go blue!

This isn't about respect. This is about retaining an open Senate seat. What I can tell you, again, is that when I first posted something on this candidacy that I was deluged by congratulatory emails and chats for two hours from elected officials and campaign people from across the state. To a person, they detest working with Debbie Dingell. What I can also tell you is that I'm reasonably certain that the Republicans are very much hoping that Democrats put up Debbie Dingell as a candidate rather than someone who isn't a) affiliated with a political dynasty and b) can point to a career as something other than a political apparatchik.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Two hours of calls from insiders and electeds? (0.00 / 0)
That is almost like a really good poll.  Is that more like 5 or 500 voters?  None of which would vote for or work for a Debbie Dingell for Senate campaign?  Except it is not really.  She is a legit candidate and it may piss you off, because of her name, or why all those organizers know her enough to not like her, or for whatever reason, but maybe you could consider all the work she has been involved in, while she was doing nothing political to be a legitimate candidate, to upset all your friends.  
On the realest of notes, as Warhawk says, I don't think Peters walks away from this unless his negs come back so awful he is not sure he will win the general.  That would be the only smoky back room thing to happen to stop him from going after the seat.    

[ Parent ]
I don't consider that a poll... (4.00 / 1)
I've explained this to you before, so I'm repeating myself. I don't consider that a poll. In fact, I don't do polls. At this point, they're meaningless.

What I consider that is a sign of what kind of enthusiasm a Dingell candidacy would generate among party activists/operatives/elected officials. You know full well that a statewide campaign needs the help of those people.

I really don't care about "all the work" she's been involved in. In fact, that's part of the problem. In doing that work, she's perceived as being high handed, controlling and entitled. When Democrats started having their conversation about whether to dump Brewer, the most common response I got from people who supported him was that he wasn't the real problem, what was the real problem were the people behind the scenes making the decisions ... people like Debbie Dingell.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
By this logic, (4.00 / 2)
Why wouldn't you support Carl Levin's wife for Senate? Michelle Obama for President in '16?

Outlining a legislative history of John Dingell as a reason why Debbie Dingell should be elected to the Senate (or run in the first place) is borderline offensive to those of us who are "in the know."

Here's a thought. Debbie should run for John's seat, do some good work as an elected public official (whatever her "work" has been thus far, it has not been tangible to any Michigan voter), like Gary Peters has, and then when Sen. Stabenow decides to retire, run for US Senate then.  


[ Parent ]
I think she is EXACTLY what Detroit needs... (0.00 / 0)
In a Mayor.  Her DC connections, her no bullshit approach,  she could actually move the city forward towards a turn around.

[ Parent ]
Mayor (0.00 / 0)
In my view, the only thing that makes her any more qualified than Bing or Duggan is that she's actually a real Democrat... and I'm not a fan of Bing nor Duggan.

[ Parent ]
Wait, why are you mad at Granholm now? (0.00 / 0)

I thought you wanted the no primary one candidate deal?

I'm tired of Granholm (0.00 / 0)
Good candidate, but a terrible governor who parlayed that somehow into success as a media figure. I really just want her to go away, and I wish national media people would stop asking her about Michigan.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
I (4.00 / 2)
agree with your position on the whole Senate primary thing, but the anti-Granholm stuff is a bit tiresome.

If the only thing she ever did was stop Dick DeVos from being elected in 2006, then she deserves to be revered by MI Dems.

Who else should national media folks ask about MI other than its most recent Democratic governor?

Nobody - not I, nor MI historians decades from now - will mark the two Granholm terms as breaking any records in great governance or policy advancements. But I believe she deserves to be at least one step above persona non grata among Dem/lib folks in the state.  


[ Parent ]
I would have agreed, except that she's inserted herself back into the spotlight (0.00 / 0)
I was okay with Granholm leaving the state and teaching. I wasn't okay with Granholm taking on a column for Politico, and becoming a Tee Vee show host who spent her time admonishing Democratic politicians for not being aggressive in promoting policies Granholm herself refused to defend as governor. John Engler had the good sense to basically retire from politics. Jim Blanchard stayed active in public service, but in a quiet, behind-the-scenes way (except for when he tried another run at governor). Jennifer Granholm chose to become a megaphone. For those of us who were routinely thrown under the bus during her administration, it's a bit much to handle.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
Lets be honest (4.00 / 3)
DD is a creature of DC and there are very few people in Michigan who think this is a good idea.  

Notice the first real mentions of her official interest was to CNN.  Her gun op-ed appeared in the Washington Post.  Now a race breakdown in Politico. Basically, the only people who think this is a good idea are those who are afraid of her, can make a buck off her or live in the DC bubble.

And don't confuse the love and respect people have for the Congressman as a transferable resource.  It isn't.

She would be an awful general election candidate.  At the end of the day that is what terrifies me.  


And Emily's List... (0.00 / 0)
I'd agree ... if the DC bubble crowd was in the business of electing senators from Michigan, she'd be the person to run. Unfortunately, a very long time ago, they made direct election of senators by the people a part of the constitution (and even then, it was originally the state Legislature rather than a web of campaign consultants, lobbyists, and other low-grade folk), which once made Peter Hoekstra very angry.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
Creature of DC? (0.00 / 0)
She may be a power player in the Beltway, but her work here in Michigan should not be overlooked.  I just googled her name and found she's on the board of several MI organizations that range from Southeastern YWCA to Henry Ford Health System.  We have mutual friends and they say she has the ability to bring people at every level to the table so that their voices can be heard.  She has a reputation of being intense, but if I needed help with something she is somebody I would definitely want on my side because I know she would fight like hell for me.

I NEVER comment on these blogs but felt compelled to post here (YES, I just created this account!) As a professional woman, I think it is very insulting and condescending to marginalize "all her work" by saying it is "high handed, controlling and entitled."  Really?!   A man would be applauded for achieving what she has and would be deemed a leader.  I really, REALLY hate this double standard!!!  

Aside from her work professionally and with various groups, I've seen her speak at several events and she has the ability to motivate people to start getting involved.  I have no doubt that she can energize activists!


No one cares, and frankly this is your one warning (0.00 / 0)
A while ago, I posted that the "You're a racist/homophobe/sexist because I don't like what you say," lamp is forever extinguished on this website. This goes for this comment:

I NEVER comment on these blogs but felt compelled to post here (YES, I just created this account!) As a professional woman, I think it is very insulting and condescending to marginalize "all her work" by saying it is "high handed, controlling and entitled."  Really?!   A man would be applauded for achieving what she has and would be deemed a leader.  I really, REALLY hate this double standard!!!  

We're not going to have a conversation where the way she treats people is turned into something appropriate because she's a woman. If a man were to do the same thing, he'd have a reputation for being an asshole. And, no, a man would not be deemed worthy of election to the Senate for accomplishing what she's accomplished ... unless she had the right last name.

By the way, I ought to tell you that when new people leave comments, I go through the profile they've created and toss the e-mail address they used to do it into Teh Google Machines (a little trick I learned back in '08). When their address bounces back with no specific results to it, I start to suspect that it's a spoof address created minutes before the associated profile on this site. I also take a pretty good look at IP addresses used to create the account and match them up against other suspected spoof accounts.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
"She's a known quantity in her own right in Michigan." (0.00 / 0)
No, she isn't. She's known within Democratic circles, and almost entirely within insider baseball Democratic circles, where as has been pointed out she has a reputation for high-handed, autocratic tendencies. As far as most voters are concerned, the last name Dingell is the same thing as the last name Romney.

At least one poll shows she does well with Democrats. Why the execration of Debbie?


From Crain's in 2012 Michigan list of Most Connected people (0.00 / 0)
Eric's passion now has me actually looking at all this stuff...Debbie is only number 8 on this list...

MOST CONNECTED BY RANK
1  JAMES NICHOLSON
2  THOMAS OGDEN
2  CYNTHIA PASKY
4  FLORINE MARK
5  ANTHONY EARLEY JR.
6  ALAN E. SCHWARTZ
7  MATTHEW CULLEN
8  DEBBIE DINGELL
9  SANDRA PIERCE
10  ALFRED GLANCY III
10  JOHN RAKOLTA JR.
12  CHRISTOPHER ILITCH
12  DANIEL LOEPP
14  GARY TORGOW
15  KIETH COCKRELL
16  ALBERT BERRIZ
16  WILLIAM PICKARD
18  WILLIAM CLAY FORD JR.
19  STEPHEN POLK
20  ROGER PENSKE
21  PHILLIP WM. FISHER
22  GLENDA PRICE
23  MARY SUE COLEMAN
23  KEN WHIPPLE
25  W. FRANK FOUNTAIN JR.
26  JOHN LEWIS
27  REGINALD TURNER JR.
CHARLES MCCLURE
29  DAVID HEMPSTEAD
30  LIZABETH ARDISANA
30  WILLIAM PARFET32  RICHARD MANOOGIAN33  IRMA ELDER34  JON BARFIELD34  ROBERT TAUBMAN36  WILLIAM YOUNG
37  STEPHEN D'ARCY37  THOMAS DEKAR37  ELEANOR JOSAITIS40  KEITH CRAIN41  RONALD MARCINELLI42  TOM WILSON43  YOUSIF GHAFARI43  CHARLES PODOWSKI45  BARBARA ALLUSHUSKI45  CARL CAMDEN47  GERARD ANDERSON48  THOMAS BUHL48  JAMES FARLEY48  DAVID FISCHER48  ROBERT ROSSITER48  BRAD SIMMONS  


[ Parent ]
How Many are Connected to Kevin Bacon? (0.00 / 0)
Looks like I only know of less than 10 and met only three.

[ Parent ]
Connected and known to people are entirely different things (0.00 / 0)
In fact, looking at that list, how many of those people have been pushed for some form of higher office. Zero.

Might be a reason for that.

Please, let's stop mistaking connected for name recognition. Let's also stop trying to make this about me. It's about Debbie Dingell, who is running for Senate.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Because we, as relatively well-informed followers of politics... (0.00 / 0)
...can look ahead to next spring and summer and predict the train-wreck a Dingell for Senate campaign would cause. The internecine strife would draw attention away from the Governor's race, hurt our downballot candidates, consume resources better spent in the general election, and distract our new MDP Chairman.

If Lon Johnson endorses Dingell, he'd come under fire for being in Debbie's pocket (a quid pro quo for her help in getting him elected Chair). If he endorses Peters, then he probably gets a challenge for the Chairmanship in 2015. And the longer he stays neutral, the more times he'll be asked the question when he'd rather be talking up all our other fine candidates.

This needs to end -- and soon. Rep. Mike Rogers will not be a pushover, especially once he receives $30-40 million in dark money support.

"The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity." ~ Harlan Ellison


[ Parent ]
Related: (0.00 / 0)
Who's gonna be our Gov. candidate? ;)

[ Parent ]
That is starting to worry me... (3.50 / 2)
The time to commit is now, if any Democrat hopes to line up support from the County parties, local Clubs and District organizations.

Not to mention hire top-tier talent to manage the campaign and raise funds.

This time around, there is no presumptive nominee bigfooting around the state freezing out other potential candidates -- that was John Cherry in 2009.

If Mark Schauer wants it, he'd best get off the fence. If there's a groundswell for some other candidate -- perhaps someone who fits the "model" I'm hearing about -- there'd better be an announcement soon.

"The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity." ~ Harlan Ellison


[ Parent ]
Confused (4.00 / 2)
Debbie Dingell's name hadn't been anywhere in much of anything, lately, and then there is some behind the scenes rumbling that it seems obvious she created, and now she's got "friends" crawling out of the woodwork to post on blogs, one even admitting to never joining and now joining just to say something.

Anyone is entitle to run for anything they'd like so long as they meet the bare qualifications for the office.  That's not really what's been debated, here.  However, it'd really look better had she not just parachuetted here name into the race.  And, you also doing spoil for a fight, just because.  Everything about how she's trying to enter the race just seems cynical and unnecessary.  Nobody up 'til now has been screaming for Senator Debbie Dingell, while everyone knew Peters was putting in the work for a higher office.  Quite frankly, putting up this kind of a roadblock - especially since it's not for a principled reason - is sabotage, plain and simple.  Her candidacy simply doesn't make enough sense.

Let me clear about something.  In a race between Dingell and Peters, it's not even a contest for me.  I picked Peters.  People also know that in any other scenario, I've been pretty critical of Peters.  To be honest, most are more ambition than substance.  But, just look at what and how Peters has inspired and then look at the reaction to Dingell.  There is no comparison.  I'd be stupid ignore that.  One is a very settled, wide, and deep genuine body of support...and one isn't.  She's botched this thing right out the gate  


From my perspective, this is swiftly becoming a train wreck of a candidacy (4.00 / 1)
Since my first post on this race a few weeks ago, just on this website, there's been sock puppetry, accusations of sexism, concern trolling, and other minor annoyances. The number of her supporters on this site have increased since I first wrote about Dingell's candidacy, but oddly more so than the number of IP addresses used to create the new accounts.

If you have a credible case to make for her candidacy, make it. I'm open to having my mind changed. But, what we've seen so far has mostly been an attempt to set the rules for the debate, which to me isn't a terribly good sign.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Well (0.00 / 0)

At this point what matters at this point is who can get assurances of money and ground support. Those with either or both will look at the person's past and potential ability to win the seat.

Prior "exposure" to the public at large means little. After all, Carl's previous elected position before the US Senate was on the city council for Detroit, Spence Abraham as the Michigan Republican Party chairman, Debbie Stabenow, came from the state senate. Short of Tiger pitcher Verlander running, few people are all that well known by the general populace.


[ Parent ]
Let's see... (0.00 / 0)
Debbie Stabenow was a statewide figure because of her role in property tax/education funding reform, her run as candidate for lieutenant governor, and finally her terms in the House.

Carl Levin was elected at a time when you could go from Detroit City Council to statewide office because Detroit at the time was basically the entire state.

Spence Abraham narrowly won his seat in a year of big wins for Republicans that made Newt Gingrich the House Speaker, and in a year when Democrats ran Howard Wolpe for governor.

Debbie Dingell is unknown outside political circles and the district her husband represents. She has no special accomplishments to sell herself beyond her husband's last name. She is regarded as a creature of D.C. and rather than surrounding herself with Michigan people, has instead chosen to surrounding herself with Washington consultants.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Obvious (0.00 / 0)
You don't want a Debbie Dingell candidacy for US Senate. Got it. But your argument that she can't win because she is a creature of DC does not convince. I don't think anyone on this planet can yet make that prediction, yet.

Frankly, it looks like your distaste of D2 is well, (sorry for this), personal.


[ Parent ]
Ye flippin' Gods (4.00 / 1)
You should be sorry for that. It's the dumbest, worst sort of argument there is. And, frankly, it's becoming very typical of the sort of argument I'm getting from people who like her candidacy.

At first, it was, "We should let this play out." Now, it's degenerated into insinuation, first that I'm sexist, and now this, the predictable, dull conclusion that it's personal. It's not ever that I just think it's a very bad idea for reasons that have been fleshed out time and time and time again, and not just me but by others. No, if I think it's a bad idea to let this go on, it's because there's something wrong with me.

It's not too early to say this is a bad idea, because I can predict the most likely future. I can predict the most likely future because I've seen this thing before, and it always has the same end result ... either a race that shouldn't have been a nail biter is, or she winds up being the person to cost us a Senate seat.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Ye Flippin' Drama (0.00 / 0)
Your argument simply does not convince.

That's it. Didn't say it was wrong. OK?


[ Parent ]
No, that's not it (0.00 / 0)
Or, did someone else write this:

"Frankly, it looks like your distaste of D2 is well, (sorry for this), personal."

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
Personal Bias (4.00 / 1)
Personal bias is always relevant.

You've all but "accused" me of personal bias in supporting Debbie Dingell, as if there is something metaphysically wrong in supporting her candidacy, but I'm supporting Gary Peters. Something I haven't mentioned in any of my posts. But I don't really have a dog in the race, its not like I'm going to donate thousands of dollars to any candidate, nor am I seeking a job with any candidate nor in the US Senate. Nor will my semi-anonymous postings on the Michigan Liberal gain any points with anyone.

Your point that D2 is an out-of-touch DC insider does carry some weight, but is not convincing, especially in light of the past electorate giving their votes to obscure candidates. (Like Abraham and Carl Levin). Your arguments are seemingly personal feelings.

I don't see how you can predict the future any more than anyone else. Success in politics usually boils down to one common factor: money. And D2 apparently has the ability to raise it, both as a DC insider and the fact that her husband is a powerful congressman. And I'm sure that Peters, who came from a finance background, does too.

You gave a lot weight to the poll sponsored by MSS, showing Peters with a comfortable lead in name recognition but gave little weight to a very similar poll by Mitchell showing D2 and Peters essentially tied for name recognition. That reflects bias. MSS and Mitchell both provide consulting services, but Mitchell has expertise in polling. Something to consider.

I've voiced by concerns with both polls, pointing out that the methodology and poling questions were not released.

You discounted Abraham's and Carl's first successful candidacies for the US Senate, essentially saying that any Republican could have gotten elected that year Abraham ran and that Carl from from a Big City. Abraham was a complete unknown to the electorate at large and Carl was one of nine city council members for Detroit, also a unknown to the majority of the state and even in Detroit (Quick name all your own council members). While the city (and the Democratic) vote certainly helped Carl win the general election, he was by no means assured of success in the primary. Sandy Levin's two candidacies for the US House probably helped.

I see the candidacy of Debbie Dingell and Peters as essentially equal. While Debbie is not an elected official she has great name recognition in her husband's district. Peters has shown with his successful reelection to his new seat that he has some name recognition there. Apparently neither has any significant state-wide exposure. And that's it.

I certainly am tired of "inside politics" and vehemently voiced my displeasure of another term for former State Democratic Chair Mark Brewer. I've had my share of "sophisticated" DC consultants and experts plow through our state with a carpetbag in tow. But both candidates will use them.


[ Parent ]
Sandy (0.00 / 0)
Sandy's candidacies for governor, not US House.

[ Parent ]
You don't find my argument convincing, yet you agree with it... (4.00 / 1)
A. My argument is not that Debbie Dingell can't win because she's a creature of D.C. Someone else said this, and pointed out that not only is she using D.C. consultants to drive her campaign but that she's also mostly just released stuff through the D.C. media. I think that's a compelling argument to go along with the argument I've actually made, which is...

B. That the primary thing Debbie Dingell has going for her as a statewide candidate is that she shares a last name with her husband. But, people don't elect family members, they elect candidates. To support this, I've pointed out -- in several places -- that two generations of Romneys have now tried to dine out in Michigan on George Romney's name and none of them have succeeded.

C. I dismissed the Mitchell poll, not because I didn't like the results (and, again, I've pointed out in a number of places that I place no stock in poll numbers taken now; and have in the past, consistently over the last six years on this website, said I don't ever take polls seriously), but because Mitchell last year was the worst performing pollster in the state. He didn't do his reputation much good in releasing polls right after RTW and right before the state of the state that, in stark contrast of every other poll we've seen, said that Michiganders are just ducky with both the governor, Republicans in the Legislature, and Right to Work. The MSS strategies poll, which I mentioned because people were talking about it (have I mentioned that I don't find polls, especially right now, to be convincing for anyone except a candidate who wants to point to a reason for getting into a race), I didn't dismiss because it gave us results that I would expect ... that Peters is probably ahead in some imaginary race, but that most people haven't made up their mind. Why would I go with my gut? Because in conversations with people across the state, many of whom don't know each other, the feeling is nearly universal that Peters would be a better candidate.

D. Yes, I dismissed the election of Carl Levin and Spence Abraham as either events from a different time period. I find the more recent experience of throwing Romneys at open seats to be a more likely fit of what would happen in this race (please reason A. and B.).

E. All this aside, Debbie Dingell could run and win. Despite the words people have attempted to put into my mouth, I've repeatedly said that she can win this seat because at the end of the day this is a blue state. What I've said, to sum up, is that the most likely road to retaining this seat lies not with a D.C. dinner crowd fixture who starts with D.C. consultants and D.C. media, and who no one can point to a single reason why independent voters should be comfortable breaking her way on Election Day. That person, based on A., B., and D., is the most likely candidate to produce this last half of a lead media paragraph, "... lost a Senate seat held for three decades by retiring Sen. Carl Levin."

F. I am not against robust, argumentative primaries, and that takes into account that I ran this website during the 2008 presidential primary, which has left emotional scars on everyone involved. I don't think it's healthy for the Democratic Party, however, to having so recently sent such a strong message that it wants things to change, to have a primary fight that comes down to "new" vs. "same old shit." I think that kind of thing right now is the best, fastest way to kill enthusiasm.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
One of Many Points (0.00 / 0)
People can and do votes for names.

The best example I can think of: Kirsten Frank Kelly.


[ Parent ]
That's different (0.00 / 0)
That's a non-partisan part of the ballot the candidates of which people are never exposed to ... Supreme Court races. A Senate race is very different. There is campaigning and advertising and media jostling, and at some point a candidate will be expected to be more than a vague name to them on an unconsidered part of the ballot.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
That's Silly (0.00 / 0)
Then why so many husbands, wives, daughters, sons, parents, cousins ... with the same last name are so frequently elected to the state senate, house and local seats?

Hell, why did so many Kennedys get elected, Hilary Clinton in New York...

BTW, while you have good reason to be critical of the Mitchell poll because of past performance issues, who conducted the poll for MSS?  


[ Parent ]
No it isn't (0.00 / 0)
You're now just being contrary.

I shouldn't have bothered explaining the difference between a Supreme Court race on the non-partisan side of the ballot and one for the U.S. Senate, so I won't bother explaining the difference in winning a local race with a few thousand voters versus a statewide one with maybe 3 to 4 million.

I'm also not going to spend time discussing polls with you.  This is what I wrote about the MSS poll when it was released:

Main Street Strategies this afternoon released a poll of Michigan Democrats on the Senate race. Again, as I always say, take polls -- especially this early in the process -- with a grain of salt large enough to preserve a brisket, but these are the results.

Where exactly do you think I've been inconsistent? Again, you just come off as trying to be contrary and argumentative.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
QED (0.00 / 0)
That the primary thing Debbie Dingell has going for her as a statewide candidate is that she shares a last name with her husband. But, people don't elect family members, they elect candidates. To support this, I've pointed out -- in several places -- that two generations of Romneys have now tried to dine out in Michigan on George Romney's name and none of them have succeeded.


[ Parent ]
Yes, exactly... (0.00 / 0)
... as a statewide candidate ...

So, what's your point?

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
"Where exactly do you think I've been inconsistent?" Eric B. (0.00 / 0)
Well, I thought I laid that out. But, whatever. What you and I think will not impact the decision of people who enter the race and don't. And it won't impact the people who cut the checks.

In any case, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." So it matters little to me if you have been consistent. Its the basis of some of your arguments that I think are weak. But, hey, I don't know the difference between a partisan and non-partisan race. Who knew to ask?


[ Parent ]
Except that you haven't begun to make an argument for why this consistency is foolish (0.00 / 0)
You're just calling names out of the blue. And, by the way, earlier today, you appeared miffed that I was being inconsistent in my approach to polling information. Now, you're miffed that I've provably, consistently said the same things on polls.

And, no, you haven't laid out where you think I've been inconsistent (while then, in two paragraphs, going on to deride "foolish consistencies"). You've said things, things that turned out to not be what were said, but that's another story.

I'm sorry, but again, you're coming off as nothing more than a contrarian.

Among the Trees


[ Parent ]
N.B. (1.00 / 1)
You should be sorry for that. It's the dumbest, worst sort of argument there is. -Eric B.



[ Parent ]
The Irony (0.00 / 0)
Of rating your own comment a "one." Europeans are right, Americans don't understand satire ... Even when we create it.

[ Parent ]
Stabenow and the Recent Democratic History for Senate. (4.00 / 3)
It is worth elaborating upon that now-Senator Debbie Stabenow was also a two-term congresswoman at the time of her being nominated without opposition for the U.S. Senate seat (having beaten a Republican incumbent to first take the U.S. House seat). It may be an experience we repeat (i.e. the two-term congressperson being nominated).

Our nominees for U.S. Senate before Stabenow and Levin were also members of congress: M. Bob Carr (Lansing-centered district) and Don Riegle (Flint-centered district -- held as a Republican and a Democrat by the same fellow).

Frank Kelly was the sitting Attorney General of Michigan while also nominated for U.S. Senate in 1972 (losing to incumbent Griffin).

G. Mennen Williams was former Governor of Michigan before being nominated for U.S. Senate in 1966 (losing to Griffin).

Phil Hart was Lieutenant Governor of Michigan before being elected U.S. Senator in 1958.

Patrick McNamara went from the Detroit Board of Education and Detroit City Council to U.S. Senator in 1954. I imagine he was elevated in large part because of his labor and party ties upon the death of former U.S. Senator Blair Moody, who was running to return to the chamber after losing in 1952.

Blair Moody was our 1952 nominee. He had an unconventional background: Newspaperman. He was appointed to the seat following Arthur Vandenberg's death.

Our nominee in 1948 was Frank Hook, a former U.S. Representative from THE UPPER PENINSULA! I found one! A Yooper statewide nominee for the Democrats! Alas, he lost. He lost quite a few attempts to return to the House from his district, too.

Alright, before that the state of Michigan politics was too wildly different to make any extrapolations.

Annnnnyways (as my father can often be heard saying, since we both are too verbose) the Michigan Democratic Party has entrusted its last two open U.S. Senate seat nominations to current Members of Congress (Carr in 1994, Stabenow in 2000). Save for those that were appointed to fill vacancies (Moody, McNamara) all previous nominees currently or recently held major office (Governor, Attorney General, Detroit Council President) and even then weren't guaranteed a win despite their strong statewide profile.

When were those the case? Well, bad cycles for Democrats as it turns out. The appointed incumbent Moody struck out in 1952 during the Eisenhower win. The former governor Williams lost in 1966 during the post-Johnson landslide ebbtide. The sitting AG Kelly lost during the Nixon landslide in 1972. Poor Bob Carr got run over during the 1994 revolution.

All I can say is: Thank goodness we didn't have a U.S. Senate seat up in Michigan for 2010. Oh and: Let us pray 2014 isn't a wave election where the tide has turned against Democrats again.

Source for some of the olllld races: www.politicalgraveyard.com  Love that site.

Great Lakes, Great Times.


[ Parent ]
I can't possibly imagine (4.00 / 1)
A likely scenario in which this:

Oh and: Let us pray 2014 isn't a wave election where the tide has turned against Democrats again.

Becomes the case.  2010 wasn't entirely unpredictable, and 2014 isn't it.  I think the re-election of the president has brought with it a kind of resounding rebuke and has taken A LOT of cultural wedge issues off the table that have been used to beat Democrats with.  I really think Obama's re-election was probably a bigger watershed political moment - policy-wise - than even his election in 2008.  At least here in Michigan, the same-sex marriage issue has turned against Republicans, as has the "takers-vs-makers" argument.  This is our Senate seat to lose.  We have the issues on our side like in few other times, so the difference will be the candidate.  2010 isn't coming again, not on the issues.  If we lose, it will have been on candidate personality.


[ Parent ]
I can, in nightmares. (4.00 / 2)
Fair points all and I agree, but U.S. Senate seats aren't best left to chance and the national political winds -- who could've foreseen the 2002 midterm elections going so ho-hum?

Winter 2001 was full of indignation over the November 2000 elections. Summer 2001 was full of the new president's initial stumbles and Enron meltdowns. His approval ratings were continually nosediving. And then disaster of unimaginable proportions and the immediate onset of the War in Afghanistan. So much can change so quickly.

The world moves so slowly. Until it moves so fast.

On another tangent...

Same election cycle: Jennifer Granholm was in commanding shape over Posthumus until she won by three points at the end. Was it the Kilpatrick backroom deal accusations, what with the guaranteed appointments and hirings memo?

Four years later: Jennifer Granholm was a damaged incumbent doomed to defeat. DeVos was bankrolling his way to victory. Then he bankrolled his way to a landslide defeat. In the Spring of 2006 downballot candidates were warned of being closely tied to the struggling top of the ticket.

So much can change so quickly.

I guess the contrast to all of that is that Carl Levin won in a landslide in 2002. : )

Great Lakes, Great Times.


[ Parent ]

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