Hagan presses Obama to approve Keystone pipeline

Bad for the environment, bad for energy independence, and bad politics. I suppose the Hagan campaign thinks this move will improve her standing among moderates, and maybe it will. But it's a risky game she's playing. Because in addition to moderates, Hagan needs liberals to turn out big time in November. Yet she seems to be doing everything she can to dampen our enthusiasm.


Just practice saying Senator Tillis

That should help.

I don't need a perfect candidate and I don't think Senator Hagan is pushing Keystone for votes. I don't have to agree with her 100%. I just know that the alternative is a million times worse.

My battle cry is 2010 Never again! (Twenty ten, Never again)

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.


The words "Senator Tillis" come with the stench of vomit, assuming he gets through the primary.

But riddle me this: why IS she pushing Keystone and why now? The story suggests that the Democrats who are activating this issue are those who are vulnerable in the 2014 cycle. I don't see that there's anything to be gained at all. What's more, the State Department's assessment of the pipeline's impact appears to have been flawed by almost any standard, with greenhouse gas emissions completely ignored in the calculus. There's nothing in Keystone that's good for North Carolina, good for America, or good for the world. The only winners are Big Energy, who seem to be calling the shots.

I wish could answer that

Maybe the timing is off, but I don't think she is supporting it for votes. Honestly, I don't understand why any Democrat or Republican with active brain function would support it. Not now, not ever. I have very few litmus test issues with women's rights leading the way. Have her - or anyone - cross the line there and you'll see me foam at the mouth. :)

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

That's my litmus test too

Specifically, reproductive rights.

That's the main reason why Pat McCrory is dead to me. I know a lot of people who believed his happy horseshit when he said "None," in response to Laura Leslie's question during the debate. They took him at his word and it turns out he is an unapologetic liar. That single action will be his downfall in 2016.

Hagan is pro-choice and will support abortion rights 100%. Tillis and Harris are not; they will vote to restrict women's rights to control their own bodies. That's pretty much all anyone needs to know in 2014.

Not sure about the votes

I have a feeling Conservative PACs are going to use the Keystone pipeline issue to flog Democrats, and Kay might feel the need to "get ahead" of those attacks.

Then again, she was part of a Congressional "fact-finding" tour of the Alberta Tar Sands operation. I sent her office an e-mail begging her to deviate from the industry tour (which is what it was) and go do a fly-over of the toxic wasteland resulting from the process (I got a "thank you" form letter response). But on her return, she was gung-ho for the whole thing.

I can just imagine the kind of propaganda they were immersed in. They probably took the Congress critters to a beautiful park somewhere and said, "This is what it looks like when we're finished!" ;(

Because -- She is a Blue Dawg

She is trying out some liberal lines, but she is still a (1) banker, (2) lawyer, (3) Blue Dawg and is also an honorary CoChair of the Third Way -- stick around and Hillary will boost that worthless piece of shit, just like DLC. I wrote her and offered he money to quit the Thirdway. She did not write back.



I don't like being critical of Hagan

But some actions just defy explanation.

Would she be better than Tillis or Harris? By light years. Could she do more to be a responsible steward of our planet? We all could.

This doesn't improve her standing with moderates

Talking about Keystone does nothing for an NC politician -- especially with "moderates"

This is designed to improve her standing with the lobbying firms she's going to work for when she loses.


More on the Keystone "letter"

Interesting diary up at DKos by Hunter, who can be relied on for straight shooting. According to his analysis, the likelihood of the pipeline moving ahead any time soon is basically zero because of court challenges related to eminent domain rights. All the more reason to believe this sleeping dog should have been left alone.


...or maybe you were right all along

Maybe she figured there was no chance it would go ahead, so why not write a "letter" that has no teeth. Not her modus operandi, but....it does kinda make you go "hmmmmm."

edit - I meant maybe you were right all along that it is a campaign ploy

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Hagan lost my vote and

Hagan lost my vote and support long ago....she has repeatedly made sure that I did not change my mind. Now its apparent she does not want to be Senator.. She has ads being run by a clean air and water group, in the midst of a coal ash scandal and she now joins her buddy oil girl Landreau of Louisiana in support oil sand being moved in pipes over the center of the country to Houston to refineries that will then be loaded on ships for Europe and Asia. Not the US....but the rest of the world. Has she taken on Duke Energy, no. The GOP field almost had me ready to hold my nose and vote for Hagan but XL Pipeline sealed the deal. I like a lot of Democrats will stay home in November. We will have a Republican Senator whether named Tillis or Hagan.


She votes with Obama 96% of the time

...and with the Democratic party 90% of the time in 2013. Now...that might not be ideologically perfect, but it is a hell of a lot better than a Republican.

Sit at home if you want, but at least get your facts straight.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

The Clinton Democrat

I kind of look at Kay as a "Clinton Democrat", a moderate liberal that can talk the talk on some issues, but sides with big business more than I would like.

It's hard to find any progressive or liberal Democrat that can make any headway in state or Federal level elections. The Republicans have moved so far right and extremist that the Democrats are falling in the middle. Before Reagan, when the Republicans were sane, the Dems had more room to move left to distinguish themselves from their opponents - there was actual debate and compromise that went on.

There used to be a mix of moderate Democrats and Republicans. The Republicans have gone off the deep end, so it's been up to the Democrats to appear to be the "adult in the room".

Do yourself a favor and check out this cartoon - it really sums up where US politics is at the moment. What do you do when all your opponent does is scream incoherently?

Your choice is really clear - a less than ideal Democrat that is functional as your representative in government or a raving lunatic. Take your pick.

Sadly hilarious

...and if we don't want another Republican from NC in the Senate, we may have to compromise in the voting booth.

The art of compromise appears to be lost on quite a few these days.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.


I remember a certain election where progressives didn't compromise and voted for some guy ... what was his name? Oh yeah ... Ralph something ....

That election wound up giving us eight years of this.

facts straight

I stated my reasons for staying at home. As to my facts being straight, they are. Do you really think your snarky comment will in any way change my mind ? I have not voted for a republican since 1968 and I want now but I will stay home and I suspect a lot of other Democrats will as well. But that's an opinion much like your opinion that Hagan is a hell of a lot better than a Republican. Betsy you have a nice day, hear.


Tillis vs. Hagan is a choice between the horrible and the awful

And I'm choosing neither.

Who cares if someone votes 90-something% with Obama or the Democratic party when Obama and the Democratic party aren't supporting what I support?

It's pathetic how the federal Democrats have failed so miserably in the past 5 years to advance a semblance of a progressive agenda.

If Hagan or any other candidate for any other office wants my vote, they have to earn it.

Candidates don't get my vote by presenting themselves as lesser evils. Seriously? Who wants to live in a world like that? I don't. So I refuse to enable it at the ballot box.


I understand your frustration

I guess I've come around to the fact that the lesser of two evils actually is the lesser of two evils. I wish we had a solid progressive running for Senate and I would vote for that person in a heartbeat. But we don't.

To paraphrase Rummy, we go into elections with the candidates we have.

Let's face it, the system is stacked against enlightenment, and it's truly rare that a solid progressive can emerge. Bernie Sanders. Elizabeth Warren. We the People get the candidates we deserve, and that is a damn sad commentary.

You don't change elected officials by beating up on them

If you are really sincere about electing progressives then you need to educate and change the people who elect them. Voters are responsible for who is sitting in Washington and if you want someone different you can either go with the Republican by sitting at home or you can be part of the solution by helping educate voters.

Change may happen when people sit at home and do nothing, but it takes a hell of a lot longer!

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Of course you change politicians by beating up on them

McCrory's u-turn on teacher pay didn't happen because people sent flowers to him.

I vote in every election. I just won't be voting for Hagan in May or November.

In fact, I encourage people to look at the other Democrats on the primary ballot for US Senate -- namely Will Stewart. It's likely he'll get my vote.

And I continue to encourage and educate voters to support Robin Hudson for Supreme Court on the May ballot.

Looky there, I just did it again.



suck...I don't care how progressive they are. Bullies suck.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

Equating advocacy to bullying? Really?

Or what just a childish reduction to name-calling -- because I simply believe in holding politicians accountable?

Why have elections at all if there is to be no accountability?

If you don't want accountability, save us the cost of elections and name a monarch.


I didn't call anyone a name

You claimed that beating up on candidates worked. I call that bullying. Apparently you call that advocacy. I guess I disagree with your methods. I still think that bullies suck.

Advocacy does not require ugliness, whining, bitching or beating up on candidates to be effective.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

sitting at home

At what point do we stop rewarding Democrats in North Carolina for being at best mediocre and voting for them, supporting them, funding them just because they call themselves Democrats?

The clown car on Hillsborough street known as The Democratic Party of NC

Save the "part of the solution" diatribe ..and "educating the voter"...Based on what is presented as Democrats of late it seems to me that we are where we are whether we sit on our backsides or faithfully vote each and every time as I have since my first ballot was cast in 1968. Again, an opinion.. a voters opinion...a faithful Democrats opinion .....


Something to keep in mind

Usernamehere here made a comment about Kay Hagan not supporting any of the issues that are important to him, and that is a valid complaint. I think most of us have one or two issues we're especially interested in or invested in, and a failure in those areas by a politician can produce a visceral reaction, as opposed to other issues that affect us on merely an intellectual level. This variance in reaction is understandable. We're humans, not robots.

But the thing is, being a Progressive isn't just about pursuing the good, it's also about preventing the bad. And if you need some examples, take a look at some of the bills that have come out of the US House in the last few years. The amount of human suffering represented in the actions of that misguided body is staggering, yet we make jokes about how foolish they are. We can afford to make jokes about it because of our Dem majority in the Senate, and the fact President Obama has a stamp handy.

But that can easily change in the next couple of years.

I hesitate to play the guilt card, but here it is: if we allow perhaps overblown feelings of betrayal or dreams of the perfect candidate to keep us from defending the integrity (that's right, I said it) of the US Senate, and this results in the further destruction of the safety net and all the suffering that comes along with that, then we have failed. We haven't "laid the groundwork" for future change, and we haven't "sent a message" to politicians and their advisors, we have simply failed.


Republicans need to pick up 6 seats to gain control of the United States Senate. There are a disproportionate number of Democratic Senators facing serious competition in red states. The likelihood is that if Kay Hagan wins North Carolina , Democrats will retain majority control of the United States Senate. The Party that controls the legislative body controls what votes will and will no be taken on public policy questions. Progressives who do not vote for Kay Hagan are also taking a stand against Senator Warren and Senator Sanders. Progressive Senators have the ability to negotiate compromises when they are a part of a team that makes up the majority. They have little to no power when the are in the minority party to advance legislation.

I served four years with Kay Hagan in the North Carolina Senate. While she is a moderate Democrat, she supported compromises with the preogrssive/populist wing of Senate Democratic Caucus that resulted in a minimum wage increase, the earned income tax credit and public financing of statewide offices. When the Democrats became a minority after the 2010 election, the progressive/populist wing lost the most political clout in the General Assembly. Almost every major initiative supported by the progressive/populist wing of the Senate Democrats from 2004 to 2012 has been repealed by the Republicans: the Racial Justice Act, same day registration, public financing of statewide offices and the earned income tax. All 4 of these initiatives involved serious negotiation with the moderate and conservative wings of the Democratic Party, but they were achieved because progressives/populists had a seat at the table of power.

Remember Mitt Romney won North Carolina in 2012. He won because most North Carolinians did not support President Obama's two successful signature programs: the stimulus package and his healthcare plan. Remember North Carolinians also voted in 2012 to ban gay marriage. In 2014 Kay Hagan will have to defend her support for the president's two major initiatives that she cast votes in support, and she will have to defend her position in support of gay marriage. Democrats who attack her by calling her a Republican and say they won't vote for her this fall need to join a "religious sect" where they can practice their "religion of purity" while the rest of us engage in the hard work of democratic politics and moving the ball forward.

The next president will likely get 2 Supreme Court appointments including replacing one of the conservatives shifting the balance of power away from the conservatives. The opportunity to make such appointments by a Democratic President should be reason enough for any progressive Democrat to do everything in his or her power to fight to main Democratic control of the United States Senate where such appointments must be confirmed

I agree with a lot of that, Senator,

except or the "religious sect" observation.

Many of the complaints about Senator Hagan's priorities are legitimate, and should not be completely ignored or written off as extremism. And it also should be noted there's an ugly side to political pragmatism, such as the decision to place the Marriage Amendment on the Primary ballot as opposed to the General. Regardless of what people involved in the decision claim, it was done in an effort to limit the turnout of conservatives in November, and it put the fate of LGBT citizens in the hands of a much smaller group of voters.

It's one thing to argue Progressives or special interest sub-groups are better served by helping everybody in the big tent keep it standing, and it's another when you jab a tent-pole through their hearts to keep that tent up.

All that being said, I do agree maintaining the Democratic Majority in the US Senate is important enough to table some of those arguments for the time being. Like I said, the potential harm from not doing so is great, and your observations about Supreme Court appointees is also valid. But it should be understood by everybody reading this that we are going to work our asses off to make sure the term "Conservative Democrat" will be viewed as an oxymoron in the years ahead, and that includes North Carolina.