My breakfast with Diana

We have a number of reasons for the Democratic resurgence here in Colorado. But I think there is one major reason that is never discussed, the large number of great politicos we have. Especially when compared to total embarrassments like Marilyn Musgrave & Doug Bruce. Quality is a very powerful argument in the political contest.

Remember those cartoons where there is an incredibly complicate machine and there is a person constantly working to keep it running, oiling it here, adjusting a dial there, taking a hammer to it elsewhere. The constant ongoing effort to keep it running. Well think of the machine as the federal government and that person working to keep it running is Congresswoman DeGette.

She talked about a number of things, but the underlying thread through all of this was making government work well for people. What should be improved, how can it be improved, making the change happen. It’s a difficult under-appreciated job that is absolutely essential. (Maybe we should only elect moms as representatives as they already live that life raising their kids.)

She also sees that it takes a lot of time to accomplish anything in Congress. Some efforts she has been working for 9+ years. And she sees going forward that what she takes on can take 9 years from today. She’s in there for the long haul, which is key if you are going to get legislation passed. Some reps are there as a stepping stone (anyone think Ed Perlmutter is not going to shoot for something higher in the next 8 years?) while others see what they can accomplish if they are in it for the long haul. Congresswoman DeGette is in it for the long haul. And because of that, she will continue to be effective in getting legislation passed.

She is presently working on major legislation for both consumer safety and food safety. Boring little things that will get no press, but will save many many lives from here forward. (Why is it Paris Hilton gets more press than all of this basic legislation put together?)

I asked here if she was worried about a veto and she was basically flip with her response that we have a new approach, they pass it, Bush vetos it, they override the veto. The way she said this was when she won me over – it was just that it’s an extra step, but no big deal. She clearly sees that the emperor has limited power.

She also talked a lot about how not only did Bush take on a lot more power than is good for our government, but that Congress was actively complicit in this shift. It’s rare to have a politician own up to what they should have done better – usually they point the finger elsewhere. She talked quite a bit about specifics where Congress should have done it’s job, from the PATRIOT act to FISA to a number of other items.

She talked not only about these mistakes, but about how Congress in the next session needs to fix these problems. Clearly she sees this as one of the major jobs of Congress in 2008.

She talked about stems cell research some, but not a lot. It clearly will be a slam dunk come January and she realizes that. So she’s just waiting till then (that knowledge again that these things take time) and is very assured it will then pass (it will).

She also made a comment almost in passing that she needs to figure out what will be her major effort once this passes. I think by January everything she has been working diligently on for the last couple of years will be in law. I took how she said this that she does not have anything that strikes her as her next big effort (yet). So if there is something that you think is really important and it will take a major effort over several years to accomplish, it might be a good time to talk to the Congresswoman.

I asked her about her opinion of inherent contempt and she said she did not know what it is. It’s interesting that something that has been a major theme on the net for over a year, and is a constitutional prerogative of Congress, is apparently still news to many in Congress. Strange.

She then closed up talking about her book. The inspiration for it came when she dove in to what drove the Republican war on science and she found that it really came down to a Republican war on sex. (For a party that has David Vitter and Larry Craig to name a few, the Republicans sure are hung up on sex.) I asked her if she’s ready for her Daily Show interview and she said yes, then asked if I thought she would get on. My reply was with a book about Republicans and sex, how could they not invite her.

I have a lot of respect for the legislators who just work day in and day out trying to improve the country knowing they will never be the rock star. Because they are the ones that do the vast majority of the work.

First published at Liberal and Loving It

My opinion of Congresswoman DeGette

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22 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. RockySnark says:

    I’d love to know if DeGette is going to continue to push for the unnecessary protections she afforded herself in the last redistricting effort.  In 2010, will she continue to block portions of her district from being reapportioned to help other democratic congressional candidates, in surrounding districts, from being elected or protected?    

    • DavidThi808 says:

      If was hitting her with a bunch of questions, that would definitely be one of them. And the thing is, I think she would easily win in a very competitive district – she does a good job and she campaigns well.

      I think when we get close to redistricting time, we should try and get a bi-partisian net effort to create 7 competitive districts, and to make as many state districts as possible competitive too.

      • Laughing Boy says:

        I would never talk to anyone.  Her seat is safe until she dies if she wants.  

      • Skyler says:

        And now he won’t be our newly appointed Secretary of State.

        • Laughing Boy says:

          God himself couldn’t dislodge her from that seat.  It’s an example of government at its worst.  

          Fine, keep it a leftie seat, but punt her ass out of there after two or three terms.  The fact that Robert Byrd was able to stay in office from being a member of the Whig party to his present-day Democrat self is a great indicator that nobody should be able to serve more that 250 Congressional terms in a row.

        • Jambalaya says:

          …he proposed a bill that would do almost nothing, but which he used to claim a measure of bipartisanship.  He’s rightly lost all support from both sides of the aisle.

      • Jambalaya says:

        ..how in the world would we know that?  From her years of hard-won elections against formidable opponents?  HA!

        She would be (and has been) re-elected regardless of her actions and oftentimes in spite of the dishwater-temp support that she “inspires.”  Moreover, the other elected Dems don’t even like her, much less follow her.  She is the poster-child for those who claim that the “(D)” after your name is all it takes to win elections in Denver.

  2. davebarnes says:

    you could put CD-1 on the Big Line.

  3. sjintheknow says:

    These poor dumb people in Denver love the Democrats because they believe that Democrats will GIVE them something…Health Care for All Free, more free medical and Social Security for Illegals, More Welfare Money.  

    You can keep Diana Denver…but….

    You better elect John McCain President to stop these Democrats who will tax us to death.

  4. sjintheknow says:

    Laugh now because Liberals will be crying when McCain is President of the United States… NO BIG TAXES FOR LIBERALS TO GIVE AWAY!

    LOL,LOL,LOL

    • BlueCat says:

      without sucking the rest of us down the drain with them.  And we better not whine about the way they’ve totally screwed up our economy with their “fancy financial instruments” to quote W.  We better just shut up and hand over those tax dollars.  

      Oh and of course the endless trillions in debt for the endless military occupation he supports. Will he want one to match in Iran too? We better not whine about loading our kids and grandkids (not theirs; they get the big tax breaks) with all that debt either.  That’s what we’re here for. To provide them with profit when they’re schemes work, bear the burden of their wars for profit and bail them out with Republican socialism for the elite when their houses of cards collapse.

      Do you have amnesia about how much better off the middle class and small business was during the Clinton years or what?  You must to believe that Republicans are good for the economy and make people more prosperous.  That has almost NEVER been the case.  And our debt has always gone up under Republicans too.  

      Bush has  gotten a great start on demolishing the great American middle class.  If you want to finish the job then vote Republican.  

  5. Old Rep says:

    The republican party has changed significantly since Reagan.  They now stand for big government, huge deficits and more laws to hinder our freedoms.  Bush in one year hired over a million federal employees, out of 1.3 total country wide wide for that year. Of course he never mentioned where the new hires would work.  Ever time a tax is lowered for the rich, all the middle class get their taxes raised, either directly or with less services.  But all is mentioned is that their has been a tax cut.  Deficits are in the trillions, but conservatives simply ignore them and blame them on the liberals.  Remember Roves comment that Reagan proved that fiscal responsibility is not important.  The religious leaders tell their followers how to vote, but allow the “conservative” leaders to simply ignore their parishners when it comes to raising their taxes.  Rather ungrateful of the religions who are supported by the middle class donations.  As not much is expected, but spin, no wonder we are ending up with such poor character leaders.

  6. Old Rep says:

    The republican party has changed significantly since Reagan.  They now stand for big government, huge deficits and more laws to hinder our freedoms.  Bush in one year hired over a million federal employees, out of 1.3 total country wide wide for that year. Of course he never mentioned where the new hires would work.  Ever time a tax is lowered for the rich, all the middle class get their taxes raised, either directly or with less services.  But all is mentioned is that their has been a tax cut.  Deficits are in the trillions, but conservatives simply ignore them and blame them on the liberals.  Remember Roves comment that Reagan proved that fiscal responsibility is not important.  The religious leaders tell their followers how to vote, but allow the “conservative” leaders to simply ignore their parishners when it comes to raising their taxes.  Rather ungrateful of the religions who are supported by the middle class donations.  As not much is expected, but spin, no wonder we are ending up with such poor character leaders.

  7. Old Rep says:

    The republican party has changed significantly since Reagan.  They now stand for big government, huge deficits and more laws to hinder our freedoms.  Bush in one year hired over a million federal employees, out of 1.3 total country wide wide for that year. Of course he never mentioned where the new hires would work.  Ever time a tax is lowered for the rich, all the middle class get their taxes raised, either directly or with less services.  But all is mentioned is that their has been a tax cut.  Deficits are in the trillions, but conservatives simply ignore them and blame them on the liberals.  Remember Roves comment that Reagan proved that fiscal responsibility is not important.  The religious leaders tell their followers how to vote, but allow the “conservative” leaders to simply ignore their parishners when it comes to raising their taxes.  Rather ungrateful of the religions who are supported by the middle class donations.  As not much is expected, but spin, no wonder we are ending up with such poor character leaders.

  8. sjintheknow says:

    Bush is not the brightest blub in the chandelier… he spent way too much and many conservatives hate him for that.  The war, well I believe, Bush did that for many reasons good and bad.  But we will be there no matter who is President because of OIL.  

    You complain about the “rich” getting tax breaks but these are the people who create businesses and jobs.  These businesses and jobs make the economy grow.

    We are in trouble because Congress let Banks and Mortgage companies lend money to people who could not pay the bill on houses and credit cards and toys.  Congress makes the laws not the President.

    The religious leaders tell their conservative followers how to vote…LOL if you believe this one.  That is like saying Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton tell Liberals how to vote…tell that to the people who voted for Hillary.

    We end up with poor choices for candidates because the “parties” lead the people to the choices they want and deals are made.  McCain was not my first choice but I support McCain because he is a million times better than Obama who is almost a socialist.  

    • RedGreen says:

      Laugh now Monkey Boy, because Paranoid Conservatives will be crying when Obama is President of the United States… NO MORE LIES FOR CONSERVATIVES TO ENDLESSLY SPIN!!

  9. Old Rep says:

    Now we have an effective rate of between 35 and 15%. The 35 being the tax rate for income and the 15% being the capital gains and dividend rate.  The trick is to get all your income into the 15% rate.  This is done by planning and new tax code.  The richest man in America has a marginal tax rate of 18%.  This doesn’t include all the regressive taxes, such as sales tax, gov fees, and real estate.  Middle classes tend to invest in America.  The super rich will invest where the return is the best, not America.  Notice the rebates were for the middle class as we would spend them here.  The economy has done nothing for Bushes time.  The S&P was at 1530 in 1998, Which at a nominal 9% gain would yeild aroun 3060 today. it is at around 1250, guess the super rich aren’t doing that well for the rest of us.  We have a lot of us that fall prey to the logic that we aren’t worth much and we must give our money to someone else.  We should have more pride and stand up for ourselves.  Remember Bushes logic for the tax cut.  He believed it morally wrong for the government to not spend all our tax dollars and that we should return the surplus to the “right” people.  Sure fixed that problem.  In a democratic society it is very importent that we vote for ourselves and not prostitute our vote.  

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