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We've got a new ActBlue page with what we are calling "netroots candidates". I'm not doing a Kos Dozen this year, instead working with other bloggers to find concensus on the type of candidates we'd like to support.

Currently on the list is Ciro Rodriguez, whose one day story was just extended another day by the AP, Francine Busby in CA-50, which will be running in a first-round special election in April and gives us a bona fide pickup opportunity of a Republican seat (the one vacated by that felon Republican Duke Cunningham), and Ned Lamont, who is facing off against Fox News Democrat Joe Lieberman in the Democratic primary in August.

More candidates will be added to this ActBlue page as the election season unfolds.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:25 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  $80,000 for Ciro? (none)
    Not bad at all.

    Any polls on the TX-28 primary lately?

    Or on CA-50?

    •  i havent seen any on Busby (none)
      part of the problem is that there are at least half a dozen GOP candidates lining up to duke it out with her.  none of them come close to having as much money as her, but combined they have more.  i have been tracking the conservative blogs, they dont seem to have a clear cut favorite yet.

      Ann Coulter, the right-wing bully who seems too loud even when you mute the television. -NYT Magazine

      by juls on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 10:11:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Add my 40 to that, (none)
      Had to split it between the three though!!

      Hmm..but hopefully every little bit helps.

      Dr. Dean...Paging Dr. Dean...he's not on-call you say...then get me DR. MATT!! STAT!!!

      by doctormatt06 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 11:33:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  John Sullivan is the 'Ciro Rodriguez' of Illinois (4.00)
    I just posted this on my Diary:

    Dan Lipinski and John Sullivan I saw all the posts on Ciro Rodriguez -- Kos for example -- about the "true blue" Democrat challenger, Ciro Rodriguez who's running against faux Democrat Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) in the primary.

    It reminded me of the situation we have here in Illinois where Democratic Challenger John Sullivan is running in the primary against incumbent Daniel Lipinski (IL-03).

    Read more...

    Independent Illinois Grassroots: IllinoisDemNet.com

    by patachon on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:30:44 AM PST

  •  Thanks for backing Francine (none)
    She needs the support, and we can take that seat.

    Let the great world spin for ever down the ringing grooves of change. - Tennyson

    by bumblebums on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:31:10 AM PST

  •  ActBlue is awesome... Just gave Ned $50! (4.00)
    Yesterday I created my own page of CT candidates!

    And then when the Lamont link went active, I got so excited I forgot to donate through my own portal. oh well!

    If anyone wants to check out ActBlue's functionality, go here:
    http://www.actblue.com/...

    This is a great way to solicit your friends to donate to those races you care about!

  •  Matt Brown (none)
    I'm pulling for Matt Brown.

    Here's a recent diary from him:
    linked text

  •  Here's a DINO in the Texas House (4.00)
    "When I get to the state Capitol, I lock the Democratic Party in my trunk."
    - Sen. Frank Madla (D?- TX SD-19)

    Video clip

    Rep. Carlos Uresti is the Ciro in this primary.

    Burnt Orange Report has the details.

  •  Will Busby make the Dkos candidate list? (none)
    On the righthand column, I just see Tester, Lamont, and Rodriguez.

    On another note, do not lose the significance of this special election for Cunningham's seat. At the national level, we need to focus on one thing here and one thing only: Cunningham's corruption is the tip of the iceberg or a Republican syndrome of allowing corruption to corrode our national defense planning and the security of Americans. Corruption is about more than golf outings in Scotland. The Republicans ongoing inability to control corruption within their ranks (Delay just got Cunningham's old seat) destroys their capacity to keep us safe.

    Fresh blood, uncorrupted leaders, new perspectives (i.e., no more subs to fight the Soviets), and innovative solutions are needed. Whatever's been true in the past ain't true anymore: to keep America safe, we've gotta put Dems in charge.

    •  change is in the wind.. (none)
      The special election in the 50th is crucial.

      The Dukestir has recieved more than SIGNIFICANT press to make headlines and have reverberations throughout the country.

      It's like the Hackett Campaign - but with corruption as the main stay.

  •  I just gave my first 50 to Lamont (none)
    ROCK THAT BOAT NED!!

    http://dumpjoe.com/

    by ctkeith on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:41:00 AM PST

  •  Thanks, kos (none)
    Is it time to put a "contribute" link up by Lamont under your candidates section on the dKos home page? You could link to your netroots page, or to his mail in contribution form. Thanks.

    Say no to hate, bigotry, and the author of the Fed. Marriage Amendment, Marilyn Musgrave. Please donate to Angie Paccione.

    by OLinda on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:41:01 AM PST

  •  voting with our dollars (none)
    the best thiing about Netroots candidates, and the group of "Fighting Dems" candidates is that by supporting them directly, rather than through the National Party apparat, none of the money will be going to support the Liebermans and other DINOs who can't seem to grasp the concept "Unified Opposition".

    Money seems to be the motivator for the National Party. Supporting candidates directly sends a strong message, not only to the candidate, but to the Party, as well.

    -8.0, -7.03 don't always believe what you think...

    by claude on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:41:03 AM PST

  •  CA-50 thanks you! (none)

    Francine is a huge hope for us here. Yes, its a heavily GOP district, yes there are several GOP candidates running and spending money on tv and radio. But she can do it! She has name recognition from running against Duke in '04 (and gaining more votes than any prior opponent).

    Thank you so much for highlighting her campaign.

    -5.75, -5.44 Last person on earth to finally create a blog

    by SanDiegoDem on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:43:18 AM PST

  •  Patrcia Madrid for NM- 01 (none)
    www.madridforcongress.org

    Some reasons why she should get Kos's support:

    1. She's already got Heather Wilson running scared, as evinced by Wilson's sudden demand for investigations of the NSA's wiretapping program.
    2.  She and Wilson are already in a neck and neck race.  This is soooo very winnable.
    3.  If I can spend the next couple years speaking lovingly of 'Patsy,' it will really help me to perfect my Edina Monsoon imitation.
  •  WI-05 Bryan Kennedy (none)
    He posts here, he buys blogads, he trusts and consults bloggers, he supports local Dem party reform efforts to put the leadership back into the hands of, you know, people.

    He has raised more money so far against the indepedently wealth F. Jim Sensenbrenner than any previous candidate.  The district is a longshot, but with netroots behind him and general anti-Republican sentiment, we have a chance.

    Support Bryan now!

  •  Chulo Cuellar... (none)
    Sounds like that is a great leaflet Ciro's campaign is putting out.
  •  How do we prevent another Jeff Seamann? (none)
    Netroots gave more than $120,000.  What is the system?

    Stop Corporate Influence; buy DEMOCRACY BONDS!!! http://www.democrats.org/democracybonds.html

    by timber on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:50:37 AM PST

    •  What happened with Seamann? (none)
      Sorry if this seems self-evident to others; it's just that there are those who kind of drift in and out of here rather than reading religiously on a daily basis, and posts like this one come across as kind of enigmatic...

      -Alan

      -9.00, -3.69 Bush, 12/12/05: "I think we are welcomed [in Iraq]. But it was not a peaceful welcome."

      by SlackerInc on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:56:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Seemann was a staple of the NetRoots (none)
        crowd last cycle, running as a Democratic challenger to 30yr Ohio incumbent, Ralph Regula.

        With a continued presence on dKos, Jeff built a group of steady followers, and raised close to 100K through the internet.

        The only problem-- He wasn't a credible candidate. Things went from bad to worse when it was discovered that Jeff never filed his campaign finance disclosure reports. The FEC fined him over $9,000, and there is over 60K unaccounted for, which is troubling since Jeff was paying himself out of campaign monies....

      •  link (none)

        Stop Corporate Influence; buy DEMOCRACY BONDS!!! http://www.democrats.org/democracybonds.html

        by timber on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 10:43:54 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Lois Murphy - a must (none)
    The PA-06 race is identified by most pundits as among the most, if not the most, important house races for 2006.  Lois Murphy, coming out of practically nowhere, almost beat the incumbent Gerlach in 2004.  Gerlach is a Delay flunky who has been tainted by the Abramoff affair as well.

    This race needs to be put on the list. It is important and winable for the Dems. The Republicans are going to throw a lot at Gerlach - they already have - and Lois can use as much support as possible.   There is a lot of enthusiasm locally for Lois and she in fact is outraising Gerlach at the moment. As time goes on and the Republican money machine kicks in, it will get much tougher.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 09:51:37 AM PST

  •  VA-SEN (none)
    James Webb's campaign site is up: contribute there or volunteer if you live in VA. Hopefully Webb will get his ActBlue act together soon too.

    Strong support for a conservative Dem candidate like Webb would be a great signal of ideological diversity in the netroots.

  •  I can never get enough (none)
    of the "one day story" joke.
  •  9/11 Family Member Running (none)
    Please consider ANDREW RICE who has been a very vocal and inspiring 9/11 Family Member (his brother David was a victim in the WTC), and who is running for the Oklahoma State Senate.

    His race is a very winnable (moderate/progressive) open seat in an otherwise red state.

    Our campaign has learned he will be 1 of 15 candidates nationally endorsed in the next two weeks by one of the oldest and largest progressive PACs in the country.

    Here is Andrew's website:
    ANDREW FOR OKLAHOMA

    -Rice for State Senate Campaign Staff

  •  Francine can make the difference... (none)
    ..The dirty tricks have already started.  Two of the Republican candidates are attacking each other already.

    Bilbray (pro lobbyist) and State Senator Morrow (termed out of state legislature) are going head to head, for their shot at Busby.

    link'd here on my blog of the local happenings.

  •  what happened to timetogojoe? (none)
    I believe that I pledged a wee amount of money at timetogojoe.com to anyone who would challenge Joe in the primary.  Before I go do it again at the very nice ActBlue page, does anyone know if those pledges are going to be passed to Ned Lamont??
  •  Virgil Goode = Cueller + 4 years (none)
    Virgil "MZM-Scandal" Goode was a Cueller-like Democrat in the 5th district in Virginia, until 2002 when he defected to the Republicans for a seat on what is now Delay's committee and subcommittee (appropriations>justice, science, state).

    Al Weed is a fighting Dem running for this seat and he's using every netroots tool we can get our hands on! At the BoB event the other day, we learned that Al was one of 3 fighting Dems already using podcasting to help his supporters keep up with the campaign, and we're setting up his blog right now.

    We're still getting a lot of the stuff set up, so until the campaign's blog is all ready to go, I'll be using my own blog Dynamic Pressure as an un-official campaign blog.

    We're trying to use the as much of a netroots strategy as we can, so if there's stuff we can be doing that we don't know about, tell me! (michael.snook <at> gmail.com)

    He's also facing a DLC Democrat in the primary named Bern Ewert, who had the endorsement of our state party chair 6 months before he ever announced. Oh, and there's no evidence that Bern has filed with the FEC even though he's been raising money on ActBlue for a while... we check the FEC page every day.

    I tell you truly, whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. -- Matthew 25:40

    by mSnook on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 10:27:50 AM PST

  •  GA-06 now in contention (none)
    Max Cleland is supporting Steve Sinton in the Georgia 6th...the northern suburbs of Atlanta, a highly Republican area currently represented by Tom Price, a physician who toes the Republican line.

    Steve's website is at:
    http://www.stevesinton.com

    Please consider him for support.  He's got an uphill battle but creative communications could help.

    I'm suggesting he carry a "kitchen table" around with him.

    HotFlashReport - Opinionated liberal views of the wrongs of the right

    by annrose on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 10:31:12 AM PST

    •  Yeah, that's the district ... (none)
      no Democrat bothered to file for in 2004 even though it was an open seat. That's the district that Newt Gingrich represented back during the 101st and 102nd Congresses when every single other district in Georgia was represented by a Democrat. A Democrat can't win in a district that is both wealthy AND socially conservative. Since there are more than 46 other races which need your $2000 more, don't waste your money on this race.
  •  An Idea (none)
    Kos or other front pagers - Since there are so many worthy candidates across the country, but our ability to help individually is finite, maybe it would be fruitful to break down targetted races by region of the country and to focus our energies in our particular region.

    I'm in NJ and while I'm rooting for Ciro and Francine and all the other great candidates around the country, my focus is going to be on my state, NY, PA and New England (i.e., dumping Little Ricky, Joementum, Mike Ferguson, etc.).

    We could have separate regional pages on dKosopedia following the races and putting out action alerts.

    What do people think?  Maybe it would at least be a better way to organize with so much going on.

    "Better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference." - FDR

  •  GA-06 now in contention. (none)
    Max Cleland is supporting a former Air America Radio founder Steve Sinton in the Georgia 6th.   This is the northern suburbs of Atlanta, a highly Republican area currently represented by Tom Price, a physician who parrots the Republican line.

    Steve's website is at:
    Steve Sinton

    Please consider him for support.  He's got an uphill battle but creative communications could help.

    I'm suggesting he carry a "kitchen table" around with him.

    HotFlashReport - Opinionated liberal views of the wrongs of the right

    by annrose on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 10:41:37 AM PST

  •  Tester... (none)
    It looks like you have Jon Tester listed there too Markos. Has everyone forgotten the straight-talkin', flat-top wearin', progressive we are all back in Montana?
  •  NOT NEO-roots (none)
    Sorry, folks... took me some time to realize that neoroots was meant to be a positive, and referred to people 'we' would support. I thought you were referring to the bad guys (neocons).

    Consider another minikker?

  •  Barry Welsh is my man (none)
    He's got his campaign against future Repug kingpin Mike Pence off and running, and he's been working hard with his people on the Fifty State Strategy. The past week has been spent trying to get someone to run against Boehner in OH-8. It looks like he's made some progress.

    Throw the man some support. Knock Pence off his throne before he gets there. Remember what happened to Daschle? Tons of outside money came into the state to knock him off. With a lot of hard work and some money, we can do the same to Pence.

    Throw the guy some dough. He's a decnt man, his campaign could use the jolt, and he's contributed some good stuff to Kos lately.

    •  Remember what happened to Daschle? (none)
      Tom Daschle was an incumbent Democrat in a state that Bush won by over 20 points. Although Barry Welsh seems like a nice, committed guy, the fact is that he's a no-name in a district, which, although it was John Kerry's fifth-best (out of nine) in Indiana, went for Bush by over 28 points. There are two districts in Indiana where a Democrat has a good chance of winning, IN-8(Brad Ellsworth) and IN-9(Baron Hill), and another (IN-2(Joe Donnelly)), where a Democrat at least has a chance at winning. If you have money to spare and want to help Indiana elect Democrats, donate to them.
      •  Daschle (none)
        My point about Daschle was that he was targeted by national powers. Yes, In understand WHY he was targeted and vulnerable. I was suggesting that some consideration be given to taking a look at removing Pence before he consolidates his power further. If you're looking for the man who's going to extend Bush's manipulation of "values" voters, this is the guy.

        IN-8 and IN-9 are both winnable races, I agree. Welsh's district is, after a few urban areas, poor farmers and manufacturing workers. The effort is being made to address the economic realities facing them. I think it can be done, but money is required.

  •  Send the DLC's handpicked candidate packing! (none)
    It's time to send the folks in CD-8 in Southern Arizona a clear message:  We DO NOT want or need their hand picked candidate "Gabby" Giffords infesting congress!

    Let's stand up and support a real person who has had to pay their way through college, support a family on military pay and who is an engineer.  It's time for Jeff Latas in Southern Arizona!  Come on folks, let's head on over to his website JeffLatas.com and give for what could be our best shot at winning back that seat that has been out of our hands since 1984.

    Come on folks--before its too late!

    Let's grow some balls Democrats!

    by NCC1701 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 12:00:11 PM PST

  •  Add Frank Gonzalez (FL-21) (none)
    Frank J. Gonzalez (D) Running in Florida's District 21 against a notorious Bush Republican.
    Frank's out on the streets, at the supermarkets, at events and rallys promoting his grassroots campaign and collecting signatures to qualify for the ballot.

    Here's Frank Gonzalez ActBlue Page.

    For more read this DailyKos Diary.

    Peace!


  •  Add Darcy Burner Wa-08 to the Netroots List! (none)
    Darcy Burner (D) is running against Congressman Dave Reichert (R) in Washington State's 8th CD (aka. Seattle Eastside.  While she has a lot of local support, Darcy is running against an extremely well funded opponent.  

    Dave Reichert is funded by local millionares and billionares, including most of the top Microsoft management; gates, connors, ballmer.  Additionally, a large number of corporate PACs and RNC related PACs are funding Reichert.  Its quite clear that Reichert has sold himself to some very wealthy clients, and has demonstrated this by voting with Tom Delay 97% of the time.

    As a result, Darcy will never be able to raise as much as Dave Reichert, but since she has good support at the local level, she can still win.  But she does need all the help she can get in raising funds.  Please consider adding Darcy to the "NetRoots Candidates".  In the interim, you can contribute to Darcy's Campaign here  

    •  Darcy Burner was/is ... (none)
      somewhat of a bigshot at Microsoft. She'll get donations from them, don't you worry (not that I'm opposing contributions to her campaign; it is one of the 18 districts represented by a Republican that John Kerry won).
  •  Races Buyblue is following (none)
    Buyblue.org will be following 18 Senate races and 30 House races in 2006. We'll be researching the corporate contributors to these races, and posting the data.

    Right now there are 231 Republicans, 202 Democrats, 1 independent, and 1 vacancy in the House. If the Democrats win 16 House seats, Nancy Pelosi will win the gavel of the Speaker of the House. Of the 30 races we'll be following 15 lean Republican, 7 lean Democratic, and 8 appear to be anyone's call.  If the Democrats win 6 Senate seats they'll break the GOP hold on the Senate. If the Republicans win those seats they'll have total control of the Senate.

    2006 could change the course of history, again. However, the amount of money being amassed and deployed to the 2006 races defies description.

    The Senate races we'll be following:

    Arizona
    Florida
    Maryland
    Michigan
    Minnesota
    Missouri
    Montana
    Nebraska
    New Jersey
    Ohio
    Pennsylvania
    Rhode Island
    Tennessee
    Texas
    Virginia
    Vermont
    Washington
    West Virginia.

    The House races we'll be tracking:

    Arizona 08
    California 50
    Colorado 08
    Connecticut 02
    Connecticut 04
    Florida 22
    Georgia 08
    Georgia 12
    Illinois 06
    Illinois 08
    Indiana 08
    Indiana 09
    Iowa 01
    Iowa 03
    Louisiana 03
    Minnesota 2
    Minnesota 6  
    New Mexico 01
    North Carolina 11
    Ohio 06
    Ohio 18
    Pennsylvania 06
    Pennsylvania 08
    South Dakota
    Texas 17
    Texas 22
    Utah 2
    Vermont
    Washington 08
    Wisconsin 08.

    If any Kossacks would like to assist in the research, please contact me at the Buyblue.org contact site.

    This is us governing. Live so that 100 years from now, someone might be proud of us.

    by marthature on Fri Feb 10, 2006 at 02:01:59 PM PST

  •  Christine Cegelis in IL - 06 (none)
    certainly deserves support.

    A true netroots candidate, she's been shafted by the Machine.

  •  Ask and ye shall receive (none)
    Another $60 given, split evenly, and a $3 donation to ActBlue for their help.

    Need to let the credit card cool down a bit after we bounce Cuellar and put Busby in Cunningham's seat...

  •  a Powerful "Millionaire Lawyers Club" (none)
    Tuesday, February 07, 2006
    JUDGE MARISELA SALDANA'S CAMPAIGN WORKER THROWS AWAY ABOUT 500 COPIES OF EL DEFENZOR

    A Plot To Control The Bench
    ----
    "The Club's" Code Words: "KEEPING THE POWDER DRY" ----
    ... JUDGE MARISELA SALDANA'S CAMPAIGN WORKER THROWS AWAY ABOUT 500 COPIES OF EL DEFENZOR FROM THE COURTHOUSE & BRAGS ABOUT IT TO STAFF

    Corpus Christi/Nueces County, TX -
    udge Marisela Saldana (a candidate for the 148th District Court) and John Martinez (a candidate for County Court At Law #3) have been chosen by a very Powerful downtown "Millionaire Lawyers Club" as the recipients of their investment in the Judicial Bench. These are just two candidates "The Club" wants in the respective seats. Please read on to learn why.

    One of the most severe errors a person can make is assuming that one will always receive a just and impartial trial from an unbiased judge here in Nueces County. The problem of bad/corrupt judges, defined as those who deliberately disobey and/or abuse their oath of office for whatever reason (bribery, blackmail, political allegiance, personnel bias, etc) has plagued the regional courts.
    It seems as though a few judges regard their oath of office as a mere ritual to be handily ignored as soon as they occupy their chambers. Once comfortably in place in their courtrooms, they take on the mantle of demigods and proceed as if they have carte-blanc to do as they please. Instead of objectivity administering true justice, they rule according to their personal biases and political allegiances, legislating from the bench with a wave of the hand, confident in the knowledge that their misdeeds have scant chance of ever reaching the Supreme Court.
    Case in point. Judge Marisela Saldana (who currently is serving as County Court At Law #3 and is seeking a seat in the 148th District Court) not too long ago was taken to court by an Afro-American (by the last name of Watson) who accused her of abusing her authority and even poking his chest. The charge of "official oppression" was never allowed to be considered seriously because the case landed in a courtroom of a judge whom she had helped politically in the past.
    The Defenzor newspaper revealed in the first part of this specific series about a week ago that there have always been suspicions that a downtown Powder group of "millionaires" has been attempting to influence the judicial bench, the day-in and day-out functions of the courthouse, and specific judges that are receptive to their Powder agendas or financial incentives. However the objective data or proof has always been miniscule or lacking. Part I of this series revealed - beyond a doubt -- that millionaire Injury Lawyers that have amassed mammoth fortunes (especially in Nueces County and South Texas) from the pain and suffering and injuries of the poor and disenfranchised and working class of the region (mostly Hispanics) are now clearly utilizing the courthouse to perpetuate their monopoly on Powder. "They are trying to crush the little guy," one downtown attorney told El Defenzor, "They are relentlessly trying to tear down parts of the structure that ensures they abide by the rules of fair play."
    In October 15, 2003, an email by Powder Broker Attorney Mikal Watts was obtained by a local publication that glimpsed at such political dictates. It reads: "Crew: ... Vilma Luna is our hero, and Jaime Capelo is our enemy. First, Vilma wisely established a working relationship with Republicans in control of the House. Second, she arranged for me and her to have a meeting with rep. Joe Nixon, the author of H.B. 4, and did an outstanding job negotiating with him to save our practice. Third, I wrote an amendment that created large exceptions to the products bill as originally written, including exceptions re: adequate standards, misleading the government, or failing to warn of defects, and she caused Nixon to meet with us, and to actually consider it... At 12:30 a.m. this morning the house passed H.B. 4 with Vilma's amendments in it."
    However the above email is politically inconsequential and now even considered miniscule by many readers when they compared it to the new documents and information cited by this newspaper - in addition to, oral interviews officially taken from persons that consistently work inside the courthouse and others who are affiliated with prominent law firms. From "delicate interactions" with a few of the Millionaire Lawyers to outright glimpses of game plans to "filthy backroom" deals have been shared and will be shared with our readers in the next few additions when we begin a new series.
    When rumors began to circulate in April of last year that District Judge Rose Vela would not be seeking reelection to the 148th District Court, this "Millionaire Lawyers Club" or Powderbase began to plot an orchestrated attempt to influence the judicial bench. To illustrate this point, in our last edition we cited an email by Attorney Mikal C. Watts send to the organized "Powderbase":

    Subject: RE: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th
    Date: Monday, April 18, 2005 7:36 AM
    From: Mikal C. Watts mcwatts@wattslawfirm.com
    To: David Perry dlperry@perryhaas.com, Williams Edwards <
    wedwards@edwardsfirm.com>
    Cc: Attorneys - Corpus Christi attorneys-cc@wattslawfirm.com, Brantley White <bwhite@swbtrial.com>, Craig Sico csico@swbtrial.com, Doug Allison <doug@dallisonlaw.com>, Jeff Wigington jwigington@wigrum.com, Kathy Snapka <ksnapka@snapkaturman.com>, Roger Braugh rbraugh@swbtrial.com

    Marisela Saldana is going to go. She called asking my advice, and you guys can Expect similar calls shortly.
    Others rumored:
    Robert Pate
    David Jones
    John Martinez
    Elbert Ocanas
    Hector Rene Gonzalez
    David Huerta

    What does everyone think about a meeting two Fridays from now to discuss a plan of action?

    Mikal

    Of course there were other emails that predated the above. One was drafted on April 13 of last year. Please read it carefully; it reflects the "organized" agenda of the Powder base.

    RE: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th
    I totally agree

    -----Original Message -----
    From: Mikal C. Watts [Mailto:mcwatts@wattslawfirm.com]
    Sent: Wednesday, April 13, 2005 6:28 PM
    To: David Perry; Edwards, William; Craig Sico; Doug Allison; Roger Braugh; Brantley White; Doug Allison; Jim Ragan; Jeff Wigington; David L. Rumley; Kathy Snapka; Attorneys - Corpus Christi
    Subject: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th

    Perry/Edwards/Sico, White Braugh/Wiginton, Rumley, Allison, Ragan, Watts Law Frim Attys:

    I am in trial right now, and in 15 minutes after court, received 7 phone messages from prospective candidates from the 148th. I suspect each of you received such calls today. My strong suggestion is that no one commit until we all get a chance to get together to discuss this. We operate with a lot more clout and effectiveness when we operate together. Let me know anyone's thoughts.

    Mikal

    There was a response to Mikal Watts' email:

    On 4/13/05 7:23 PM, "David Perry" dlperry@perryhass.com wrote:

    I am also in trial and also agree entirely.
    Who is interested?
    Thanks

    DLP
    "Edwards, William"

    But the most amusing email came from Attorney Doug Allison who opened admitted his frustration with a failed past election of one of his sponsored Hispanic candidates and its resulting repercussions of having lost a sizeable amount. The email reads:

    Subject: RE: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th
    Date: Monday, April 18, 2005 7:58 AM
    From: Doug Allison Doug@dallisonlaw.com
    To: <JIMRAGAN@aol.com>, mcwatts@wattslawfirm.com, dlperry@perryhaas.com, wedwards@edwardsfirm.com
    Cc: attorneys-cc@wattslawfirm.com, bwhite@swbtrial.com, csico@swbtrial.com, drumley@wigrum.com, jwigington@wigrum.com, ksnapka@snapkaturman.com, rbraugh@swbtrial.com

    Gentleman:
    I have been away from my emails for a bit, and thus not weighed in on this discussion (except my phone conversations with mikal). Here are my thoughts (my 2 cents).

    First and foremost, I want everyone to be spending money on the same candidate for the 148th. I am on board for this goal ..... completely.

    As many of you know, I just finished dumping a chunk of money into john martinez (in the city counsel race). I think that we got john's name into the public eye in a very positive way, and this has value (and is worth considering). This may be valuable for the 148th, or for the purpose of having john run for saldana's position (if this is a good choice). I will obviously abide by the group's decision on all of this, but I wanted to throw this out on the table.

    Let's all talk when we can....... Subject to the on-going trials.
    Thanks
    Doug

    ----Original Message-----
    From JIMRAGAN@aol.com [mailto:JIMRAGAN@aol.com]
    Sent: Mon 4/18/2005 7:41 AM
    To mcwatts@wattslawfirm.com; dlperry@perryhaas.com; wedwards@edwardsfirm.com
    Cc: attorneys--cc@wattslawfirm.com; bshite@swbtrial.com; csico@swtrial.com; Doug Allison; drumley@wigrum.com; jwigington@wigrum.com; ksnapka@snapkaturman.com; rbraugh@swbtrial.com
    Subject: Re: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th

    Sounds good

    There were other names thrown into the political pot of consideration by the "Millionare Club" although they were not recruited for the current races. Attorney David Bright writes in an email addressed to the clique:

    Subject: RE: Keeping Our Powder Dry on the 148th
    Date: Monday, April 18, 2005 10:57 AM
    From: David Bright dbright@wattslawfirm.com
    To: drumley@wigrum.com, "Mikal C. Watts" , David Perry , William Edwards wedwards@edwardsfirm.com, John Gsanger jgsanger@edwardsfirm.com
    Cc: Attorneys - Corpus Christi attorneys-cc@wattslawfirm.com, Brantley White bwhite@swbtrial.com, Craig Sico csico@swbtrial.com, Doug Allison doug@dallisonlaw.com, Jim Ragan JIMRAGAN@aol.com, Doug Allison doug@dallisonlaw.com, Jim Ragan JIMRAGAN@aol.com, Jeff Wigington jwigington@wigrum.com, Kathy Snapka ksnapka@snapkaturman.com, Roger Braugh rbraugh@swbtrial.com

    By the way, it is my understanding that both Elbert Ocanas and David Huerta would only run for the 148th if Marisela did NOT. Otherwise, they will run for Marisela's vacated bench on Co. Ct. 3.

    Also, someone named Patrick Martinez is thinking about running for the 148th. I think he would run as a Democrat. I know nothing about him.

    David Bright
    Watts Law Firm, L.L.P.
    Tower II Building, 14th Floor
    555 North Carancahua Street
    Corpus Christi, Texas 78478-0801
    Telephone: (361) 887-0500
    Toll Free: (888) 997-0560
    Facsimilie: (361) 887-0055
    dbright@wattslawfirm.com

    On 4/18/05 9:51 AM, Drumley@wigrum.com ,drumley@wigrum.com>worte:

    sounds good.

    The emails indicate that these affluent attorneys led by Mikal Watts are attempting to consolidate their Powder in order to put the judges they want on the bench. Marisela Saldana, John Martinez and a few others.
    Will "Grassroots Politics" become something of the past? Since September 2003 since House Bill 4 took effect, many Powderful trial lawyers are trying to influence the bench and most likely are searching for judicial candidates like John Martinez that accept huge contributions from such Powderful attorneys as Doug Allison who live in mansions and who color their signs with the same hue selected by the elite group that runs Spohn Memorial Hospital. It should be considered blasphemous for Martinez to exploit the Catholic symbolism in an attempt to sway Hispanic voters to his side. Just ask the question why are his signs in front of almost every hospital controlled by Spohn? What attorneys sit on the elite boards of the mentioned hospital that reinforces the muddled ethical fiber? Think about it.
    Also a reception for John Martinez will be held about three days from now - barefacedly - on Thursday, February 9 at the home of Doug Allison (4920 Ocean Drive). The following are just a few names that appear on the host committee: Watts Law Firm, Wiginton, Rumley, Perry & Haas, James Ragan, Steve Hastings, Danny Tower, James P. "Buddy" Bell. All attorneys that orbit in the concentric circles of "The Club."
    There have been a few judges in the past that have bragged that they run huge tabs at the HAVANA CLUB (downtown) and are picked up by silent parties. However, there is a price, some of these judges it has been alleged are then ask to sign "midnight orders" of many a case.
    When this publication put out its last edition (which carried Part I of this story), about 500 copies at the Nueces Courthouse were thrown away in the trash by an Hispanic attorney's sister-in-law (a clear attempt to suppress the story and damage the business) and many other Defenzor copies throughout the Corpus Christi also mysteriously disappeared. The sister-in-law in question works at a law firm (the firm is located in the same building where Mikal Watts has his). This dodgy lady that likes to sycophant to "The Club" that threw copies of El Defenzor away is an integral part of the "inner core" of Marisela Saldana's Campaign and is affiliated with what has been referred to as the "peon rung" of the Mikal Watts' machine. One source stated: "She allegedly went to mama Watts (i.e., referring to Sandra Watts) with a bunch of copies of the Defenzor and said: `Just to let you know we are taking good care of your son.'"
    But Mikal Watts (and some of his associates) have been implicated in the "disappearing of newspaper copies" before - even though the person that did it was never caught. On February 23 and February 24 of last year, the San Antonio Express-News ran articles entitled "Juror's relationship with lawyer (working for the Watts Law Firm) stalls Ford trial" and another entitled "Mystery man attempts to keep Crystal City in dark about trial." These articles point out not only the gross tactics and implicated impropriety used by the Watts Law firm to attempt to influence a jury in reference to a case that was heard in Crystal City, Texas against Ford Motor Company but also of attempting to suppress the media. The latter article writes: "An unknown man in a sport utility vehicle snatched up all copies of the San Antonio Express-News sold at newsstands in Crystal City on Wednesday, the day an article about a multimillion-dollar trial revealed a juror's romantic relationship with one of the lawyers (affiliated with the Watts Law firm).
    To share a few bytes of a pertinent business arrangement made here locally. A few years ago (mid-1990s), Marisela Saldana (after being installed as a judge) sold her law office (which is located a few blocks from the courthouse) to a couple who are attorneys. Court archives reveal that one of these attorneys who brought the property was given court appointments by Judge Saldana after the transaction. Did such appointments provide a robust financial compensation to make payments on the purchased property? This needs to be investigated in detail.
    It is truly sad that Powder can corrupt even the one who resides in the highest level of the pyramid of justice. Nowhere is this more evident than with some of the judges who operate from the Nueces County Courthouse. Time after time, County Court At Law and District and Appellate Court judges ignore Supreme Court rulings, misinterpret statutes whose meaning is perfectly clear, and bully litigants, pro se litigants and witnesses. But, despite all the injustices, let us not forget the Mexican saying: "La subida mas alta, es la caida mas dolorosa" (The most painful climb can turn out to be the most painful fall).
    Unfortunately for the public and the integrity of the entire judicial system, many corrupt lower court judges blatantly ignore Supreme Court rulings that are contrary to their own agenda that many a time seems to be in partnership with a certain Powderbase of Trial Injury Lawyers. Not only do they calculatedly pervert the path of justice but in so doing they create flawed case law, which may be consequently cited by other lower court judges. This practice leads to a vicious cycle in which one erroneous ruling is piled on top of another, forming a judicial 'cancer'.
    Extensive interviews (with both attorneys and laymen) suggest that if it appears that one is dealing with one of these few dishonest judges, it is really imperative that one at once rid oneself of any fantasy that he/she will spontaneously become impartial later in the proceedings. Once a judge reveals his/her dishonesty, you must take a stand. Corrupt judges are a serious threat to the fabric of Nueces County and South Texas and it is your patriotic responsibility to deal with the problem with all the Powder at your disposal.
    Judge Marisela Saldana has a seamy reputation for making defendants pay their fees and fines even if they are considering pleading not guilty. Attorney X (this pseudonym to protect his identity) insights: "I have heard from victims that Judge Saldana takes these defendants that are claiming to be innocent into a room and then scares them stiff by stating that if they hire attorneys to attempt to proof their innocent they will only spend needless money in that they will more likely be found guilty by her." How is such a practice functional for a judge? Attorney X explained: "This way she does not have to work hard the rest of the week."
    The post of Judge can also have perks. District Judge Sandra Watts when she took office in 2003 or so immediately requested a computer/laptop docking station (for the office/bench) - the cost is estimated anywhere from nine to eleven thousand. No judge at the time had such a system. Then again, Judge Watts was in good terms with the County Judge of the day. Or as one source put it: "When Moma Watts wants something, many are afraid of `The Club' if she is told `No!'.
    Word is also circulating in the courthouse that when Marisela Saldana was initially going to run for the post that District Judge post that Sandra Watts now occupies, she was persuaded by "The Club" that she would have their support when she ran for a similar office at a future date.
    Judge Saldana is not a poor woman. She has a house in Doddridge area of Corpus Christi as well as one in Georgetown (near Austin). She also bought a home in Padre Island.
    Some of the judges at the courthouse have taken the Justice System from the citizens of Nueces County and placed it into the hands of unethical and dishonest and bad judges and under the influence of cunning Downtown Millionaire Trial Lawyers that have no fear of the penalty and cost because they are protected from any serious discipline and liability by their fellow judges and the "Millionaire Lawyers Club." One attorney at the courthouse told El Defenzor: "Our system is no longer a showground where you must fear being on the wrong side of the law for it does not matter if you are on the wrong or right side of the law, it only matters if your on the wrong side of the judges' agenda."
    One female attorney - whom we shall refer to hereafter as Ms. Y, injected: "A few of the female judges here in courthouse have complained that Judge Saldana refers many of her cases to County Court At Law judges such as James Klager and Robert Vargas when these two judges already have their own workload. A few of the female judges disapprove of her lack of Saldana's work ethic." Court records obtained by various parties indicate that Judge Saldana has a history of arriving on many an occasion late to work: "at 11 a.m." and at even at "1:30 p.m.").
    Attorney X alleged: "It does not matter if the Constitution or the law is on one's side, it only matters if you have enormous money as `The Club' does and the judge is on your side. Many are unaware of this because they have not had to undergo it. It is also the unawareness of the public that has allowed the judicial system to become so shady and dishonest and corrupt. It is the education of the public of the abuses in our courts that will be the only means to restore truth and justice to our courts.'
    Attorney Ms. Y added: "Most voters I believe don't differentiate between female judges; thus other female judges have complained of Saldana for the reasons cited."
    But the threat of "The Club" is arguably more alarming. Some are claiming that their influence is starting to extend not only to the sanctified parameters of the bench but even beyond: it is beginning to penetrate the various layers of the system. The most alarming scenario now would be to eventually determine in which court the cases filed by members of "The Club" will land - if it has not do so already. Venue shopping? Their influence has reached media figures; some affiliated with the Coffee Club, even some of the leadership of civil rights organizations. It is beginning to sip into the police officers and the firefighters associations. The Democratic Party has been, in the last few years, been kept unstable and fragmented by such influences according to many party activists. Their influence is not only regional but spreading state wide. An article in the Dallas Morning News in July 20, 2003 listed 21 law firms of Texas lawyers heading the list of funding to Save Texas Courts, a group fighting Proposition 12, which would limit awards in medical malpractice cases (7 out of those 21 listed were from Corpus Christi - Mikal Watts, Guy H. Allison, Constant, Law Offices of Thomas J. Henry, and Sico, White & Braugh, and The Edwards Attorneys.
    Many honest citizens are losing their homes, their children, and their freedom not because they disobeyed the law but because bad judges have their own agendas. They are writing their own laws, ignoring legislative laws, disregarding Supreme Court decisions, and swaying their decisions to favor parties such as "The Club" that will further their careers.
    The egotism and overconfidence of some of these attorneys who are members of "The Club" can be disquieting. Case in point: Mikal Watts. He writes in a letter addressed to the attorney who is defending American Electric Powder (former CP&L): "Dear Don: ... After repeatedly consulting with clients, I now have been authorized to extend to you're their combined settlement of $60,000,000.00 The article in this morning's paper, and the fact that AEP is self-insured, remind me that you will most likely need to travel to Columbus to get the very large amount of settlement authority it will take to settle this case. In this regard, I am preparing a videotape settlement brochure for your client's consideration... First and foremost in any lawsuit the quality of the plaintiffs, and the jury appeal they will have the case need to be tried... My evaluation is that I have a squeaky clean plaintiff who every jury I could draw from the jury pool will absolutely love. Sam is the truest of gentlemen, and due to his vocation, is extremely eloquent and well-spoken in vocalizing his grief and damages caused by the loss of his wife... a true saint."
    But the most disturbing part of Watts' letter is that he refers to Nueces County and South Texas as a dangerous place to try a case (implying that he controls the odds of the ruling of the courts); he continues: "Second in importance in the evaluation of the settlement value in any lawsuit is venue. I believe it is wise for the individuals in Columbus who will evaluate this case to remember `Toto, we aren't in Kansas anymore.' ... South Texas venue by itself makes this a very dangerous lawsuit. When combined with admitted liability and the damages evidence we have in this case, this case is a disaster waiting to happen for AEP. In discussing venue, the most relevant consideration is the verdict and settlement history. Of course, the best cases typically get settled, and the other cases get tried. While I can tell you that his firm has many different eight-figure settlements in cases that were litigated in South Texas, those settlements amounts are confidential, and cannot be shared. Nonetheless, the verdict history of south Texas is sufficient to give the responsible individuals at AEP an idea of what will be coming their way if they fail to settle this case... (1)$139 million judgment in Nueces County refinery case... tried by myself in the summer of 2000, resulted in the jury returning a $122,500,000, for which Hon. Martha Huerta, rendered a judgment on the full amount."
    Watts warns of other cases, for AEP, to serious consider: "(3) $106 Million verdict in a single death case. This case was styled Durrill v. Ford Motor Company, and was tried by my old law partner, David Perry, in the 94th Judicial District Court in Nueces County. The case was affirmed by the Corpus Christi Court of appeals with a remittitur, and then settled for a confidential amount. (4) $103.2 million verdict in gas pollution case... (5) $100 million verdict in pesticide case... (6) $86 million judgment in a double fatality case... (7) $80 million verdict in `Patch-A-Flat' tired by my good friend... resulted in an $80 million verdict for a lady who was burned... (8) $77 million.... (9) $67 million.... (10) $59 million... (11) $59 million verdict... (12) $43 million verdict... (13) $42 million verdict in an oilfield injury case. Again, this case was tried by my old firm. It was styled Caballero v. Esenjay, and was tried to a verdict of $42 million in the 28th Judicial Dist. Court of Nueces County, Texas. It was settled on appeal... (14) $42 million verdict in Jim Wells County... Guy Allison, tried this case, styled Zapata v. Morehouse.... (15) $33.5 million verdict in a bendectin case tried in Corpus Christi... (16) $30 million verdict in a single wrongful death case involving a Honda 3-wheler ATV flipping... by Bob Hilliard and my law partner, Craig Sico, together with another lawyer from Houston.... (17) $27 million verdict in a crane-related death. ... tried by Jim Post in the 347th Judicial Court of Nueces County... (18) $26 million verdict in in a falling merchandise injury case... by my old firm in front of Hon. Vernon Harville in Nueces County... (19) $26 million verdict... (20) $25 million... (21) $20 million insurance band faith... (22) $20 million... (23) $20 million verdict in a single fatality truck wreck... (24) $20 million verdict in Nueces county in Nueces County in defamation case.... In 2000 before Hon. Martha Huerta by Justin Williams and Pat Kasparitas...(42) $10.2 million verdict"
    One Hispanic lawyer who runs an office near the courthouse said: "It is time `We the People' terminate Judicial Corruption and Immunity The Judicial system was originally intended to be the most politically weak branch of our government. In Nueces County, where I practice, this branch as operated by a few judges I am saddened to say makes life and liberty decisions not based on our Constitution and laws but on personnel bias."
    The source cited above continues: "Judges cannot be sued for their errors, they have personally written laws to disallow it. The only means of recourse are state Judicial Tenure Commissions. These Commissions receive tens of thousand of complaints each year against judges yet only reprimand less than one percent of those complaints."
    Consequently, the U.S. citizens must endure a long and costly process to receive their rights and justice. Many cannot afford the costs of this process or cannot take the time.[Note from El Defenzor staff: "Stand up to this injustice before someone you love or you yourself must endure this abuse. Write your State Representatives and Senators demanding accountability to judges and attorneys. This problem will not get better, go away or be taken care of by someone else. EVERY American must stand up for their Constitutional Rights. Demand truth and justice return to our courts. Put a stop to bad judges and bad lawyers." You can get contact information from you Congressman at www.house.gov and Senators at www.senate.gov. It is also important to notify the various Committees on the Judiciary, which can be contacted at:
    U.S. House of Representatives
    Committee on the Judiciary
    2138 Rayburn HOB
    Washington, DC 20515
    http://www.house.gov/.... Senate
    Committee on the Judiciary
    224 Dirksen Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510]

    posted by Jaime Kenedeño | 11:59 PM  

    Those who live glass houses should not throw rocks. FEEL THE BYTE!

    by Jaime Kenedeno on Sat Feb 11, 2006 at 03:14:08 AM PST

    •  The Caller Times has their picks for two of the di (none)
      Monday, February 13, 2006
      One Watts, one not ???

      Monday, February 13, 2006

      One Watts, one not
      The Caller Times has their picks for two of the district court races.
      Marisela Saldana, judge of County Court-at-Law 3, is ready to move into the 148th District Court judgeship.and
      In the 94th District race, the Editorial Board believes Angelica Hernandez's experience as an attorney with the law firm of Paul Kratzig & Associates gives her the edge in a contest with attorney Bobby Galvan, of one of Corpus Christi's most famous Hispanic families. The Democratic primary winner will face Republican challenger James Sales, an assistant district attorney.Update: Czolgosz over on DU has an interesting observation on this endorsement:
      Why would the newspaper endorse the Democratic primary candidate who barely meets the legal minimum for qualifications? The only answer that anyone I've talked to can figure is to help out the Republican candidate in the general election. The Republican candidate is a long-time darling of the newspaper. He's a "hang 'em all, 'n let God sort 'em out" prosecutor of "gang activity," which in South Texas means everything from serious crimes down to the stuff that is called "mischief" when nice middle-class white kids get caught doing the same things but which are called "gang crimes" when Hispanic kids get caught doing it.So, here's the question: Do you ever wonder if your local newspaper would endorse the obviously less qualified Democratic primary candidate in order to boost the newspaper's favorite Republican's changes in November? It can't be the Watts factor for the Caller Times. I like the way that Angelica has run her race. I don't want a person on the bench or all the judges on the bench beholden to an individual. See previous posts on this topic - here, here, here, and here.

      My reply:

      Jaime Kenedeño said...
      WATTS and the Caller Times are obviously alligned.Angelica we believe is much more prepared for the Bench than Mr Galvan. We cannot see criminal defendats recieving a fair trial with Galvan or Mr Sales or Mr Skurka for that matter. They are coming straight from the prosector's mindset and that will not change.We are convinced that given the effort any of these former prosecutors can be "rehabilitated to sit on the bench. With Mr Sales we believe he can be reasoned with as so can Skurka. We know very little about Mr Galvan.The one hurdle with Angelica is not her experience but her criminal record of theft. Nobody can trust a thief. The court she is campaigning for deals with serious felony cases. We need to take a look at Angelica and see her plans goals passions and this to JUDGE her integrity. W want to find a way to support her but at this time we have nothing to beleive in. Maybe it is just not enough money to meet her obligations?We know the feeling!
      10:15 PM

      Those who live glass houses should not throw rocks. FEEL THE BYTE!

      by Jaime Kenedeno on Mon Feb 13, 2006 at 09:05:13 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Wilson/Cantwell (none)
    For those who might be interested, there is a primary race in Washington State to put the senate seat being occupied by Maria Cantwell (D-WA) into more Progressive hands.

    Mark Wilson, a Marine Corps. veteran and small buisness owner who has run as both a Libertarian (2002) and a Green (2004) is gathering support for his campaign to replace Cantwell based upon her votes for the Invasion of Iraq, confirmation of Mushroom Cloud Condi, moving class-action lawsuits away from the consumer, for NAFTA and CAFTA, and against the fillabuster of Alito, amongst other more DLC leaning efforts.

    So far, the biggest knock on Wilson is his previous association with the Libertarians. Even many of those who criticize his 2004 effort as a Green at least recognize the consistency with Progressive values in that party. Mark makes the case that his previous associations will benefit him during the general election as the Greens will be less likely to enter a candidate in the general with him on the ballot. Many Progressive groups who worked as foot soldiers in Cantwell's 2000 "upset" over Slade Gorton (2,229 votes) are feeling betrayed today and are more than happy to listen to Mark Wilson's message. This past week, Mark was in DC cavorting with Jack Murtha and other veterans who are running for office this year.

    Of course the "Any D will do, so long as they are the Incumbent" crowd in Washington State (including the newly elected state chair) are doing everything they can to make sure the rank and file understand that any effort at a real primary will only result in a certain republican victory in November.

    And I thought Rove worked for the other guys.  

    Peace,
    The Left Shue

     

    "You may say I'm a dreamer But I'm not the only one I hope so day you will join us And the world will live as one" ............John Lennon

    by Chadshue on Sat Feb 11, 2006 at 02:58:21 PM PST

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