Disgust.

perp-walkI am so disgusted.

The speaker's race offers enough plot lines for a political potboiler. Will Black, arguably the most powerful House speaker in North Carolina history, be re-elected or indicted?

Stories in the N&O and the C.O. both say that Jim Black has a solid lead in his run for re-election as House Speaker. If Jim Black gets elected speaker, the Democratic Party might as well buy some ear plugs, because they are going to hear a lot of ranting and raving from the party faithful. Does that not occur to any of them? Does it not occur to any of them that WE are the freaking GOTV volunteers they rely on for reelection? Does it not occur to any of them at WE are their damn donor base TOO. Sure, we're not CEOs (well, most of us), or Big This or Big That, but our donations make a difference.

If Jim Black gets elected I just don't know what to do, boycott the party? Hardly. Primary the bastards? How. Focus our attention on the national races and let the legislature swing? Not practical.

How about this. How about WE exposure the Democratic corruption. How about WE do the leg-work. How about WE turn our energy on the Democratic Majority. How about WE police the party, since they won't do it themselves.

Comments

The other shoe.

Progressives split? Do we have Joe Hackney and Dan Blue to thank for this situation? We've heard rumors of 20-30 Progressive Democrats that work with each other on key issues, where are they?

Although vote-counting is difficult, the conventional wisdom among lawmakers and lobbyists is that Black has 23 or 24 votes of the 68 Democrats -- and no other Democrat has even close to that total.

Possibly, they are split between....

Can Dan Blue, who in the early 1990s became the first African-American House speaker in the South since Reconstruction, make a comeback? Or can the House's leading environmentalist, Joe Hackney, convince big business that he will not be a tree-hugger. And that's just the beginning.

Can the two of them sit down and work out a power-sharing arrangement that will unite the Democrats behind one Progressive and not allow Black to win?

CountryCrats - my thoughts, my blog.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

Dear Democratic Leadership

I use the word "leadership" advisedly, but specifically I am referring to Mike Easley, Bev Perdue, Richard Moore, Marc Basnight, Joe Hackney and Jerry Meek:

The disgusting possibility that Jim Black could become speaker is one you should think long and hard about. You should do everything in your power - and then some - to make sure this does not happen.

Because if it does, you will have a wholesale rebellion in the North Carolina grassroots and netroots that will be hard to ignore. Sure we're just small fries in a very big pond, but we are man-eating sharks a hungry pack of piranhas and we will be going for blood. The tens of thousands of dollars we gave to Democratic candidates statewide will disappear before you can blink an eye.

We will write letters, stage protests, harass, ridicule, rant and invade. And we can guarantee this: the North Carolina Legislature will become a big fucking joke on the national scene.

We helped put Larry Kissell on the map for all the nation to admire. And we will put the NC Legislature on the map as one of the most corrupt and reviled institutions in America. Of that much you can be sure.

Yeah.

How much do you want to bet that even though they largely ignore us, Kos and MyDD would LOVE to run a front-page story on NC promoting a corrupt, possibly about to be indicted, Democrat to the Speakership.

CountryCrats - my thoughts, my blog.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

It would start there

and fly.

This is just the kind of dirt national reporters LOVE . . . and the BBC would be all over it too. And then when the indictments come down, holy shit.

North Carolina. The New New Jersey.

consequences for '08

My concern is the consequences this would have for the Democratic ticket in '08.

If Black is re-elected Speaker, I would expect backlash from voters. That can only hurt our candidates for Congress, Governor, Senate, President.

I, for one, am working too hard to organize my local dems to have it all thwarted by Speaker-freakin'-Black.

Larry Kissell is MY Congressman

Let's start now.

Let's pick a day before Christmas and get all the stars lined up to drive big time recommends on Kos. Then push to the top five or six national blogs, with letters to every newspaper reporter we know, and then some.

But first we need the comprehensive diary chronicling all things Black.

Southern Dem? Pretty please?

I have such mixed feelings

I hate to hear of people, especially people like you, A., wondering if they should boycott the party. I don't have a lot of statewide experience, but I don't think that helps. The leadership won't care if a bunch of online activists boycott the party - they'll probably be relieved. I don't want to see Black as speaker, because even if he isn't indicted, even if he didn't do anything wrong, it's the appearance of conflict of interest that will make it difficult for him to lead with any sort of integrity.

I don't want to see Dems do to themselves what the Repugnacans have done over Richard Morgan, et al. I don't want to see an Art Pope sized split in our party. Black himself could prevent that - by being gracious and stopping this train in its tracks, sitting on his hands, and giving someone else a chance for a change.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Ghandi

No boycott, I agree.

We can't all go Green or something like that, as A has said before, it just won't work in our system. We can retarget our dollars to Progressive candidates, that is a sound strategy.

Also, we can call b.s. when we see it, then we can be active!!! When the legislature comes back into session I'm hoping the LTE page here overloads we have so many action diaries.

CountryCrats - my thoughts, my blog.

Jesus Swept ticked me off. Too short. I loved the characters and then POOF it was over.
-me

I'm not going to boycott or leave the party

I'm very clear that sleazy Democrats are better than sleazy Republicans any day. But that doesn't mean I'll stand silently by while the Dark Side of our party deepens control.

Will they care? Hard to say. We had 13,213 unique visitors in November, 90% of whom appear to be in North Carolina. If I were leading a Democratic party big wig in this state, I wouldn't be very excited to have 10,000 pissed off activists on my ass.

And as to Black being gracious, that would truly be a miracle.

No

I would never suggest that anyone stand silently by and let the Dark Side win.
I'm sorry, I probably reacted too quickly to the first part of your post.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Ghandi

No worries

It's a touchy subject for sure. And I truly, truly know there is no other game in town when it comes to politics. Unless the world turns upside down, I'll dependably vote Democratic till the day I die.

And there's really only one area where I flat-out get twisted up in a knot. Integrity. I can put up with a ton of crap and have lots of differences around policies and practices, but when leaders betray the public trust, well, that's where I draw the line.

I don't know if Jim Black has actually done anything illegal, but that's not my measure of acceptable. Illegal or not, he's crossed that invisible line of sleaze and greed and manipulation and power-playing that undercuts faith in government. There are lots of good people who could serve as speaker. North Carolina can do just fine without this a$$hole.

It's the same with Art Pope. The SBOE said he didn't do anything illegal. Fine, maybe he didn't. But what he did was wrong all the same.

We're on the same page.

Attention All 13,213 Deck Hands! Report to the top Deck Now!!!!

We had 13,213 unique visitors in November, 90% of whom appear to be in North Carolina. If I were leading a Democratic party big wig in this state, I wouldn't be very excited to have 10,000 pissed off activists on my ass.* Capt Quiq A

In the Navy, This would be consider a full blown perfect storm or mulity. On the internet, this would be consider a verbal or written jourualist pounding that no political party wig would want after watching the Kissell campaign here. At least we know the Strawberry Cook first name was Congressman Ron and he live in Illinois and had a DC inside mentality.

Good Rant A

Instead of a big fat man eating shark, I'd rather be a pirahna...still strikes fear in the heart. I have only touched on this subject on my blog, but agree that this is another drum that needs to be beaten! Boom, Boom, BOOM!

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Leaving is such sweet sorrow....

Anglico, I think, is talking about selectivity.

I support basic Dem programs - GOTV for instance - and Dem candidates - popular or not - but in no way can they count on my vote (or money). It's tough for a party designed around the concept of knee-jerk loyalty to deal with independent operators (tough!).

Anglico is suggesting he's going to go rogue, I believe, but not leave the party. Probably more dangerous than just ejecting out of the morass, like I have...

Hard to say how serious the NC Dems take the netroots. 13,000 uniques in Nov. sounds like a small number (even smaller at 1/4 that at citizenwill.org) but you have to factor in the demographic.

How many of the folks reading BlueNC are "trend-setters", etc. I'm sure Anglico, in his "real job", is quite conversant with the leverage of BlueNC's demographic.

And how many passive voters equals one SouthernDem? 100? 1000?

Finally, what about the national implications of re-upping Black? Aren't the Dems "the Other Guy" (to drag out an old ad campaign)? It's dang hard to sell that concept when the same foul odor wafting about K-Street is emitted locally.

CitizenWill
there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must do it because Conscience tells him it is right. MLK,Jr. to SCLC Leadership Class

CitizenWill
there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must do it because Conscience tells him it is right. MLK,Jr. to SCLC Leadership Class

A Vote For Black Is A Vote For A Primary Opponent

This is the message I'd like to spread among Democratic legislators. If you vote for Black for Speaker, then the progressives will run against you next go 'round.

I've got a very progressive representative in Susan Fisher. But if she votes for Black, she's persona non grata.

I like the "Flood the national blogs" route. Also the LTEs in all major state papers will be helpful.

Comprehensive Jim Black post? I don't have the chops for that. But the BlueNC archive has oodles of info.

Scrutiny Hooligans - http://www.scrutinyhooligans.us

comes down to pots and kettles

If we let Black stay speaker then we have no reason to complain about Delay etc.

Ultimately, the progressive movement is founded upon the belief that government can help people, and government is good. If we continue to let people abuse government then we are handing people like Art Pope and Newt Gingrich keys to the White House. Screw that. You want to see a Democratic majority across the board? RESTORE FAITH IN GOVERNMENT. Its that simple. If people believe government is doing a good job, if they see government making their lives easier, and they see a government that is clean of corruption then they will not vote for people that tell them government is evil and is ruining their lives.

Its all very simple.

HelpLarry.com

"Keep the Faith"

Chris Fitzsimon weighs in on Black

But instead of slapping the virtual crap out of the crook, he pulls his punches. That's too bad, because Jim Black deserves a full-fledged storm of criticism from all across the political spectrum.

Chris does zero in on the only hope I see in this whole sordid affair: that some of our other so-called Democratic leaders will read Black the riot act, or at least talk him off the ledge.

Some House Democrats do share the concern. More than a handful say they will not vote for Black for Speaker again under any circumstance, but they are a small minority.

Those House members and Democrats across the state are hoping for another scenario, that an “anybody but Black faction arises in the House,” possibly prompted by prominent statewide Democratic leaders worried about potential Democratic losses in 2008 and the legislative agenda this session being overshadowed by constant attention to Black’s potential legal troubles.

Without that organized campaign against him, the Speaker’s race remains Jim Black’s to lose, which may be the most surprising election result of all from 2006.

Make a fuss now...

So the problem is long gone by the 08 election cycle.