To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Election '06! Now With More Blog!

Hi, my name is Jackson and I'm an alcoholic. I'll also be your guide to this season's election cycle here in Connecticut. While I may comment from time to time on the Lamont/Lieberman fracas -- it's difficult for me to pretend any interest in those two knuckleheads, but I predict Lieberman will keep his seat -- I intend to focus on the three-way between Republican Chris Shays, Democrat Diane Farrell, and Libertarian Phil Maynim Maymin for the 4th District's seat in the House of Reps.

The ten-term Shays (that's 20 years, folks) beat Farrell in 2004 with 13 out of 17 towns, losing cities like Stamford and Norwalk while barely winning eroded Republican margins in upscale suburbs like Weston and Redding. With the double-whammy of Iraq and Maymin, I suspect Shays' support will deteriorate further.

Expect the same reading of entrails about the state of America that we saw with Lamont's race once the national press gets wind of the ménage happening here in CT's 4th. And why won't they cover it? Shays has a high profile and the bulk of the 4th consists of Fairfield County, just over the border along I-95, which means reporters can flee back to New York before the clock strikes twelve.

Just two weeks ago Maymin scored enough signatures to make it onto the ballot. Last night he held a "town meeting" (actually a debate which Shays and Farrell declined to attend) on a timeline for withdrawal from Iraq. His opening comments to the two dozen attendees -- most of whom seemed to be family members and fellow travelers -- followed his white paper on the matter. Then he turned it over to questions for an hour. His only moment of political self-aggrandizement ("The Fourth Congressional District has always been a microcosm of America as a whole") was easy to forgive once he laid into his opponents: Farrell is a party-line follower without a single original idea in her head; Shays is a free-thinker who believes what he believes, moving beyond such earthly concerns as consequences or Constitutionality. Both judgments are dead-on.

Maymin's platform is standard LP -- "Cut taxes, troops home, roll back invasive laws" -- with exceptions. Being an immigrant himself, he's hardcore on illegal immigration. Another tell came last night when Maymin was asked to comment about the "drug laws" and he responded with some fast and completely unsubstantiated invective against the FDA. I take it he understands he can't afford to be dismissed as a sativa-for-all libertarian.

So settle back, folks, and enjoy the campaign. When you flip on the TV in late October and witness the breast-beating and hair-pulling among the punditry, you can tell your friends you got in at the ground level.