It's simple, really. We need a proven perspicacious progressive in the United States Senate to talk for Kossacks and, more importantly, Americans. We need United States Representative and fellow Kossack Brad Miller in the United States Senate. And all weekend, Blue South and I have been asking for the small amount of $5.08 to make it happen. If you help make it happen, I swear this will be the last Draft Brad diary for a long time.
I know it seems selfish to ask for your help to draft one candidate when we have 33 seats to deal with in 2008. Since helping destroy the Republican Majority in the Senate, much of Elizabeth Dole's damage has been confined to North Carolina. However, in addition to being the kind of candidate who can beat Liddy, Brad will be the kind of Senator that lifts the other boats.
Dole has not been a great Senator for North Carolina. Even though all of us abhor the legacy of Jesse Helms, the one thing he could be counted on for was constituent service. Whether it's her continued absence from the state she "represents," or her lack of attention to the concerns of real North Carolinians when it comes to the disaster of building an outlying landing field (OLF) in eastern North Carolina, Liddy does not represent her constituents. But as I said, getting Brad Miller to run for Senate and win is about more than removing a sizeable blight from the North Carolina landscape. How about a few examples of why Brad Miller would be amazing in the Senate?
I don't think you need a reminder, but this is the current state of Congressional debates concerning the Internet:
That's Ted Stevens talking about a series of tubes, if you can't see it. Brad Miller is for net neutrality, can explain what it is, and will fight Internet ignorance in the Senate. In addition to being a frequent poster here at Daily Kos, and a YearlyKos supporter, Brad knows how to make technology work to make the lives of average Americans better.
It's not just his Internet expertise, however; he's become a leader in the House on the subject of sub-prime lending. This 2005 Daily Kos diary shows just how ahead of the curve Brad is:
I agree with the comments that not all "sub-prime" lending is predatory, and we cannot allow our zeal to protect vulnerable consumers to lead inadvertently to regulations that kill off all sub-prime lending. Consumers who do not quality for prime loans need to borrow to buy homes, and they need to be able to borrow against their homes to provide for life's rainy days. For most homeowners, especially those who do not qualify for prime loans, the equity they build by faithfully paying a mortgage becomes the bulk of their net worth, of their life's savings.I think it's hard to read all of that and think that Brad Miller wouldn't be a great Senator - but if you need more convincing, check out Blue South's recent diaries on his campaign to Draft Brad Miller. Your $5.08 will go a long way towards showing Rep. Miller that he has the base of support needed to take on "Senator Dull."
But there are lending practices that should offend anyone with a conscience. Victims of predatory lending usually leave the closing knowing how much their monthly payments will be, but not knowing that outrageous up-front fees were build into the loan, so that when they signed the closing documents they signed away much of the equity in their home.
Predatory lending practices have little to do with the risk to lenders. There is little risk in stripping equity from a consumer at closing, and predatory lenders make a killing. Even prosperous, sophisticated consumers usually act on trust that their loan is fair, rather than trying to decipher reams of closing documents. For consumers targeted by predatory lenders--typically lower income, less educated and minority homeowners--that trust is often misplaced. Freddie Mac estimates that a third of the sub-prime loans that it purchases are to borrowers who qualify for prime loans.
But one valid concern you may have before giving $5.08 or more is doubt that Brad will run. It's going to be a hard race, but current polling shows Liddy under 50% in a race against Brad, and gives Brad room for a ton of improvement among Democrats and African-Americans. Furthermore, the DSCC has told the Draft Brad movement that they would be very excited about a Brad Miller candidacy. And if Brad still doesn't run, you'll help him replenish his House account after beating a candidate I can only describe as evil:
Warning: young children and normal people may be disturbed by the following Vernon Robinson for Congress commercial. Pregnant women and those with heart conditions are advised against watching. View at your own risk.
Brad sent Vernon Robinson back to the dark ages, and if you send him to the Senate, North Carolinians and Americans alike will appreciate your efforts. Governor Easley, Lt. Gov. Perdue, Treasurer Moore, and AG Cooper aren't running against Dole ... and, honestly, I think that's for the best. Brad is more progressive than the lot of them, and would be an excellent candidate. The DSCC hasn't guaranteed primary support (though it's a distinct possibility), but if Brad enters the race with a grassroots groundswell, he'll recieve their full support in the general.
Thanks for your time.