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Debbie Holmes, working mother and candidate for Congress in the Idaho 2nd Congressional District, recently released her "three-minute stump speech."

I'm Debbie Holmes, and I'm running for Congress in Idaho's Second Congressional District.

I am a trained chemist, mother of three and work as a real estate agent. As someone who sells houses in Boise, I work very hard trying to help people into or out of housing in a very difficult market. The problems I see as I meet with my clients (who are usually struggling, sometimes losing their homes) have convinced me that we must make changes in how this country is run. I believe the deregulation of big business and banking by Republicans, including Mike Simpson, has led to the current distress we are in. By deregulating the financial sector we have allowed crooks to take their profits while destroying our economy. This crisis, like so many others in our country, is rooted in greed. Loans were made that never should have been made. People signed documents they did not understand. As a real estate agent, I work very hard to try to get people out of these situations.

The stories I hear on the job make me angry. There are many people who are financially devastated by medical problems. A large proportion of us do not have health insurance. First we lose our health, then our jobs, then our insurance (if we have it in the first place), then our homes. Under our current system, we penalize the sick. We also prevent innovation because people are afraid to start businesses or leave dead-end jobs if it means losing their insurance. When people are ill they should focus on their recovery, not worry about their finances.

As I said, I have worked hard to get people out of the terrible straits that we've been put into by a market run amok. But I, and all of us, must fight where we can do the most good. Someone needs to stand up as a strong progressive alternative to Mike Simpson, who has been part of the problem. His votes - and the one-party representation Idaho has in Congress - are doing nothing to solve the big issues we're facing, from the housing crisis, to the ever-rising cost of oil and gas, to the human and financial costs of the endless war in Iraq.

I am tired of trying to deal with these problems one house at a time. It's time to clean house on a larger scale. I hope I can count on your support in the primary on May 27 and throughout this year. If you can put in a few hours, give some money to improve our ability to run competitively, or simply tell your friends about our campaign, any help would be appreciated. Please give me your vote. I am the progressive candidate in the Democratic primary, and I look forward to beating Mike Simpson this fall on the issues. Thank you very much.

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Debbie needs your help. We have a primary on 27 May against a so-called "Blue Dog" Democrat who ran for Senate in 2002 and publicly declared he'd vote for Larry Craig if he lost that primary (yes, THAT Larry Craig).

The Republican incumbent, Mike Simpson, is arguably the most entrenched in Idaho. But as you all know, this is a year for change like few others in our history.

Please consider a contribution to Debbie's campaign. Help turn Idaho blue!

Originally posted to W Lane Startin on Wed Apr 02, 2008 at 09:10 AM PDT.

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