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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Norm Coleman Is Hard on the Scalp

Category: Norm Coleman
Posted: 06/11/08 20:56, Edited: 06/11/08 22:54

by Dave Mindeman

Can anybody explain what goes on in the deep recesses of the mind of Norm Coleman?

Everything he does is so politically calculated that we are left with scalp scars from the constant head scratching. The debate on the Windfall profits tax was, indeed, such an instance.

As the Pioneer Press reported, Norm did the following:

A. Sent a letter to the IRS asking for better mileage reimbursement rates. With gas prices continuing to climb, Norm actually makes some sense on this one. Head scratching optional.

B. Votes to end debate and allow a vote on a proposal to tax oil industry windfall profits. He is one of 7 Republicans to break ranks. Conservatives....commence head scratching. I am sure Norm will use the excuse that this was a cloture vote and he is ...ahem...always in favor of debate. (At least that is what he will tell conservatives). Of course, he is also holding the oil companies accountable. (At least that is what he will tell independents)

(Note: There was never any chance of the Democrats actually getting the 60 votes needed. Majority Leader Reid never even asked Senator Obama to attend knowing that he did not have the votes. So, in reality, this could have been just another "political" vote by Norm)

C. Voted against closing debate and essentially voting against a Democratic proposal extending tax breaks for wind, solar and other alternative energy development, which expire this year.
Now, he voted with Republicans on cloture, so he can't say he is always in favor of debate. And, although he claims to be in favor of moving toward renewable energy, he is squashing the current extension to do just that. Liberals and Independents...commence head scratching.

Only Norm Coleman could accomplish those 3 things and still continue to say... (A) he is a man of principle (at least the principle that pertains to whom he is pandering at the time). (B) Works to bring people together (just not all at the same time, I guess). and (C) consistently votes for Minnesota interests (depending on how you interpret it in Normspeak).

You now have permission to commence head scratching....

Incidently, the Polinaut blog reported the windfall profits voting this way:

Senate Republicans defeat attempts to tax ?excessive oil company profits.? GOP Sen. Norm Coleman and DFL Sen. Norm Coleman voted for the bill.

Conservatives might call that a Freudian slip? Actually, it was a typo (since corrected) that meant to say DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar also voted for the bill. But, Norm can be confusing to the media, too....

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Minnesota Senate -- A Contest of Issues?

Category: Norm Coleman
Posted: 06/11/08 19:22

by Dave Mindeman

Once in a great while the Pioneer Press editorial gets it right:

This is a battle of two smart and energetic candidates. It should be a campaign of ideas and philosophy and direction of the country. Each should be called to explain himself, but the opposition researchers who spend their days staring at computer screens should not run this campaign.

We think Al Franken and Norm Coleman are both up to the job. Let's hear them speak about what they want to do and where they want to take us.

And may the best vision win.

I wonder if they will consider those lofty words as they sift through all those nasty reams of GOP press releases.....

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Bachmann's Idea of Stewardship of The Earth

Posted: 06/10/08 19:34, Edited: 06/19/08 15:59

by Dave Mindeman

There are many obstacles to solving the issue of global warming. There is the need for fuel efficiency in the auto industry. There is the need to find a solution for the best source of alternative fuels. There is the need to halt the destruction of the rain forest. There is the need to get the emerging industrialized nations to get on board with a world wide reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

And then there is the need to defeat Michele Bachmann in the 6th district.

There is no one in the Minnesota Congressional delegation who has more disdain and contempt for environmental issues than Michele Bachmann. Norm Coleman at least gives lip service to protecting ANWR. John Kline may have a lousy environmental voting record but at least he keeps his ignorance on the subject less public.

But Rep. Bachmann never hesitates to work against mankind's Biblical mandate to become good stewards of the earth. That's a strange thing to have to say about a self-declared "fool for Christ".

In another press release tirade about Democratic culpability for the high price of gas, Ms. Bachmann had this particular accusation:

?Just consider: we could harvest enough energy from the shale in Colorado, Wyoming and Utah to offset all our imports from Saudi Arabia ? but it?s off limits."

Does Michele have something against North Dakota? Does she only want to exploit land protected by moratorium? If she wants to extract all that oil from shale, how about we see how things go in the Bakken formation...and its "Saudi Arabia" size reserves.. before we move into protected areas and their "Saudi Arabia" size reserves. I don't think we will be happy with the polluting by-products of such exploration, but if we have to try, North Dakota already has a proven test area.

Bachmann has this naive belief that we only have to unleash the exploratory power of the big oil companies to pillage the earth in order to reduce oil prices. Does she really think that oil prices jump $11 a barrel in one day because of simple supply issues?

No matter how much this country squeezes out new oil production from new sources, we are not going to reduce the price of gas without a reduction in the volatile Mideast political process. Oil commodity prices are moving on fear -- fear of disruptions in the pipelines, fear of Gulf political upheaval, fear of escalation in terrorism.

You can't pillage and plunder the earth enough to overcome that.
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