Friday, July 27, 2007

I'm voting for Ralph in September, you should too

In the interest of full disclosure, I wanted to let my readers know that I will be voting for Minority Leader Becker in September (by absentee probably). I guess this would constitute an endorsement. But before the Becker people get overly excited, I want stress that I still haven't decided whom I will vote for in the general election, but he is certainly in my top two.

Here's why we all need to vote for Ralph Becker on September 11, 2007:

Ralph is still in third place, maybe fourth...although "I don't know" is beating everyone but Jenny Wilson.

Unless she screws up royally (and she won't), Jenny will make it past the first round in September, but probably won't win outright. This leaves a race for second place. If Buhler or Christensen win that spot, they will be crushed by Jenny Wilson for one simple reason:

That's right, only 28% of SLC voters would vote for a Republican and the others than claim it doesn't matter can probably be swayed Jenny's way once positions are fully reveled via voting records.

But if Ralph makes into the second slot, it will be one heck of race. And Ralph has no where to go but up:
Buhler was viewed the most unfavorably: 19 percent gave him negative reviews. Christensen's portion of unfavorable impressions was 16 percent, Wilson's 11 percent and Becker's 9 percent.
Of the top tier of candidates, Becker faces the biggest name-recognition hurdle, as 35 percent said they had not heard of him.

The big question is, how is he going to get himself known? I am assuming Becker is squirreling away cash to spend on door-to-door-campaigning, and inevitably on radio or TV or newspapers ads or mailers or billboards. I personally think that billboards are worthless in a mayoral race. I would do radio and newspapers if it were me. The people that are going to vote in a runoff off-year election are partisans and activists. Mailers might be good to target the Democratic mailing list but that still won't get people who are interested in politics enough to vote but not enough to let the Party get their phone number, mailing address etc. Radio and newspaper will do that. And you can target audiences on radio. Plus newspaper has shown to be more cost effective in reaching out to likely voters than other mediums.

Anyway, I would like a real choice in November because there is no way I would vote for a guy who is afraid of his own party but still conservative, or the other guy who wants to pretend he wasn't a conservative Republican in the state legislature. I would like to struggle with deciding who is better than just not voting for the bad one.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I'm done

After two days of waking up at 6 AM to take a two-day test that lasted 17 hours and two months of solid studying...I am finished!

I feel remarkably OK about the whole thing, even when the power went out the last ten minutes of yesterday's portion of the test. It was so dark in the South Towne Expo Center that I could not see my hand in front of my face. And my first reaction was to laugh. It was just too ridiculous. Good thing that didn't happen the day before, when I was typing my essays on this laptop. Of course, on that day, the program claimed I hadn't registered. One must go online to register and of course, there was no wireless access at the expo center. Luckily the tech support people had a magical USB flash drive that magically registered me and gave me my question files.

Anyway, I don't even want to think about all the questions I got wrong or how well other people did. I am going to try to forget that ever happened until September, when I will start to freak out about whether or not I passed. Meanwhile, I have all kinds of important things to do that I have put off until after the test.

Fist up, read the last Harry Potter. [Don't ruin it for me, I have been looking forward to this for a while.] After that, I want to set up my start date at the Campaign Legal Center, where I will be interning this fall. Next, get everything ready for our trip to Montana. If I have time, I will see if there are any job openings to apply for in UT or DC.

Of course, I can't get these all done today, but I will try to do most. I might even just take a nap. If you feel like commenting, write what thing you would most like to do if you got a sudden day of freedom from work, school, kids, etc.

And thanks for sticking with me.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Will a Utahn be the next Vitter?

[This will be my last post until Thursday, and that one might be my last post for the week, I am going on vacation after the bar.]

One holier than thou "down," how many more to go?
An interesting Utah phone number showed up on the newly released phone logs of the so-called DC Madam, who is alleged to have run a high-end prostitute ring in the Washington, D.C., area.
No, it wasn't to or from the personal cell phone of any of Utah's congressmen or senators. The mysterious number was that of a Salt Lake City-based customer-support line of the Marriott hotel chain "rewards" program. There were five separate calls from December 1999 through June 2000, including one 12-minute call, according to logs of the calls, which were discovered thanks to the help of the Web site,
So far, the deputy secretary of state has resigned after reporters started scouring the phone records, and Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is under fire for admitting a past "sin."

Funny how reporters will bother to do research using the internet and calling/talking to people when it involves a sex scandal--David Vitter liked to wear diapers when having sex with prostitutes, news at a 11-- but not when it comes to hawkish claims about Al Qaeda's presence in Iraq (which is different than "Al Qaeda in Iraq" by the way) or Iran or WMD's or pretty much anything Chris Cannon is told to say on the TeeVee.

It's easier for the media to do a gotcha than to do a real fact-check. And reporters, fact checking means verifying what an interviewee/story subject is saying, not asking "both sides" to comment on what they said. He said she said is not news, it is gossip collection. A real piece of news says, "Bush claims Saddam has obtained significant quantities of uranium from Niger, but that isn't true because..." and then keep hounding the powers that be who lied to answer to the public why they lied and apologize, rather than letting them lie again (fact-checking their response would help).

Anyway, enjoy the heat and Pioneer Day, because I won't. See you on the other side.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

my accidental dinner with Lohra Miller

Somehow last night, I ended up eating dinner with my boss SLCo. DA Lohra Miller and her husband. I didn't win an office contest or anything. I just happened to go to that new Japanese restaurant near Costco.

The do the hot table show chef that slices and dices in front of you, and they seat you with as many people as necessary to fill up a table, so my wife and I ended up at the Miller's double date.

Good thing she didn't recognize me from the time she shook my hand or walked past my cube. I avoided her gaze or talking to her since I was wearing a t-shirt, shorts, tevas, and had a bad hair day and hadn't shaved in 3 days. Plus, I haven't been into work for a month because Tuesday and Wednesday is the Bar exam.

I am off to church to pray that I manage to pass. Have a great Sunday.