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This, the 2008 election year one marked on the premise of change, new ideas, etc.  Maryland Eighth District Congressman Chris Van Hollen seems unwilling to debate.  

This year, Van Hollen is being challenged on the Republican side, a doc, Steve Hudson.  He does not seem like the typical bassakwards Republicans Montgomery County and the 8th district has produced since Connie Morella's departure in '02.

Many of us Democrats campaigned against Connie for partisan reasons, when in essence, she was a very good representative for our district.  I am not impressed at all with Chris.  Yes I am a Democrat born and raised, Montgomery County bred, but I just don't get the warm and fuzzies from Chris. The times I've met him, he is very cold and unfriendly (I'M A CONSTITUENT, at least put on the obligatory smile!) His handshake, cold, sweaty and weak -- makes me wonder where his arrogance comes from.

The point is that, many of us (including myself) campaigned against Connie to put a Democrat in office, I seem to think it was a mistake. She was a true representative of the people.  I didn't elect Chris to become the DCCC chairman - don't get me wrong, I hope the Republicans get their butt kicked in November, they deserve it for having their heads stuck up their you know what -- but the point is, we need a representative who will always be there - not a partisan party boss.

I'm sure others will agree, don't we get sick of party lines after a while?  Why can't our elected leaders just do what's best for us -- instead it has to be a "Republican policy" or a "Democrat policy"... I just want what's best!

That's why I bring up the issue of a debate this election year in my district.

It looks like Steve Hudson has asked Chris Van Hollen to participate in some debates... with no response:

On June 10, 2008, the Steve Hudson for Congress campaign issued the following challenge to the Congressman Chris Van Hollen:

I write to respectfully request your participation in several debates and town hall meetings over the next few months before the November election to be hosted throughout our district.  

Why not? If the voter registration in MD-8 is 2-1 Democratic, what does Chris have to lose?  If he's right on the issues, why not have a debate --it's healthy, and its what makes our country great!

For a Republican, Hudson hits the nail on the head:

"I realize that it must be difficult for my opponent to find the time to debate given his busy schedule at the DCCC; however, I hope he will respond accordingly.  I am asking Mr. Van Hollen to have a real debate about the serious issues facing the citizens of our district and our country.  Let's have a discussion about healthcare, high gas prices, energy, the environment, the military and veterans affairs, and why Congress holds one of the lowest approval ratings in history."

The voters of Maryland's Eighth District are well educated and open to an intelligent discussion on the issues. Hudson concluded, "In this election year, with "change" as a central theme, I believe it is important to provide the voters with a thought-provoking dialogue on how their district has been represented over the past six years.  Once again I respectfully urge my opponent to accept this invitation to debate."

Again, I stress I supported his election to have Democratic representation here at home, not a party boss in my back yard.  Things don't get done in Washington because of the thick partisanship.  We need leaders, Democrat or Republican, who will lead and do what's best for the people without being afraid to snub party bosses.

Originally posted to mocodemocrat on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 10:03 PM PDT.


Should Chris Van Hollen Debate Hudson?

43%10 votes
56%13 votes

| 23 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Please edit, diary title not "Obama" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    also, rethug trollin'.

    Politics is highschool drama taken to a new level.| 08ama! | -5.50 -6.26

    by vertexoflife on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 10:05:41 PM PDT

  •  Huh. (4+ / 0-)

    So you wish the Republican was still in office, you don't like the notion of "Democrat policy," you don't think Van Hollen should participate in the leadership of his party, and "for a Republican," his opponent sure is awesome.  


    •  i think you missed my point... (0+ / 0-)

      I am a Democrat - I am a strong supporter of Hillary Clinton for the presidency, but I guess not gonna happen?

      It has NOTHING to do with "Republican" or "Democrat"

      I did not vote for Van Hollen to become the DCCC chairman, I voted for him to become my representative.  It's fascinating that I am jumped for simply wanting a debate (part of the American political process), and not just for the Republican, but why not the Green party candidate too? He seems like a respectable individual.  

      I have been a registered Dem for decades -- probably longer than some of you accusing me of otherwise - it just erks me that some people will vote party lines no matter what and not look at the individual they are voting for

      Look at Van Hollen:

      Van Hollen, who had served four years in the Maryland House of Delegates, ran against his own state senator, conservative Democrat Patricia Sher. This raised eyebrows because it was Sher who put Van Hollen on the ticket with her when he ran for delegate in 1990. At the time, Sher, who died in 2001, said it was like one of her own sons had "kicked me in the mouth with a boot."

      Don't discount it because Ms. Sher was a moderate Democrat, but look at the lengths this guy will go to get ahead.

      He is not concerned with representing my district, he is concerned with building his resume and moving on to bigger and better things...

      if it makes me a bad Democrat for examining all off the candidates regardless of party affiliation because I want real representation, so be it, but shame on those who disagree for being so thick

  •  IF the choice is between debating your Pub (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Seneca Doane

    "I realize that it must be difficult for my opponent to find the time to debate given his busy schedule at the DCCC;

    candidate or helping the DCCC elect more Dems I sincerely hope he doesn't waste any time debating the Pub.  If you post a comment I"m gonna TR it for pimping a Pub here.  

    BTW, this is a troll diary.

    •  He won't debate period... (0+ / 0-)

      He even ignores the Green Party candidate - he thinks he is above everyone, and once elected, answeres to know one because of folks like you.

      See Gordon Clark, the Green Party Candidiates blog:

      I was shaking hands on Maple Ave. when I was told that Rep. Van Hollen was coming up behind me. I turned to meet him – was it my imagination that he seemed to be taking "evasive maneuvers?"  When we finally confronted each other, I stuck out my hand, and gave him a big smile. "Hey Chris!" I said enthusiastically, "it’s Gordon Clark. You know that I’m running for Congress this fall, and I’m looking forward to some spirited debates on the issues!"

      Chris initially shook my hand – it becomes reflexive when you’re running for office – glanced at me for a second, and then turned and walked away without saying a word.

      He considers anything in district "a waste of time" - I want a real representative who will get things done regardless of his political affilation, if you can't understand that, stay home on Nov.

  •  Low user ID, no tip jar (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    The Repubs distort, but we will not abide.

    by Christian Dem in NC on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 10:17:54 PM PDT

  •  Really? (3+ / 0-)

    Prominent representatives always have additional leadership roles.  Should a congressperson not be, say, a whip or a minority leader or Speaker and devote all of his or her time to constituent service?  

    I don't object to your assertion that a debate should happen.  Debates are an important part of the political process, even if they get less coverage in our American Idol world.  But the rest of diary is a bit off.

    "No ... human ... would stack books like this."

    by socratic on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 10:20:43 PM PDT

    •  a campaign committee is not the same as.. (0+ / 0-)

      Speaker, Majority/Minority leader etc. It's simply not the same type of leadership as DCCC chairman or DSCC, NRCC, NRSC -- these roles take up a lot of extra time away from the constituents.  

      Congressional Recess aka "district work period" should be spent IN the district, not in Chris' case, wherever there's a hot race that needs attention.  Why not have someone like Howard Dean lead these campaign committees?

      There are a lot of bread and butter issues that need attention right here at home  (that haven't received attention I might add), and the skeleton staff of the congressman doesn't cut it.

      I'll agree maybe I promoted the Repub a little too much, but my point is I think we need to evaluate all the candidates running, and if one happens to be better, REGARDLESS of affilation, I think we should give them a chance.

      My point in referencing Connie Morella was that she did not take orders from the GOP and butted heads with them from time to time, she voted how she thought best -- she was a good lady, and a hell of a rep. FYI, she voted against impeaching Clinton, and voted against Gingrich as speaker.  I'm talking the kind of leadership that does what's best -- And who knows maybe Hudson or Clark would be that kind of leader

  •  Obama (0+ / 0-)

    John McCain's Court will overturn Roe; don't kid yourself.

    by Seneca Doane on Fri Jul 11, 2008 at 11:22:50 PM PDT

  •  Will you man up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and admit you are a troll?

  •  Van Hollen's done much to right Rahm's '06 wrongs (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Yes, from what I've seen of the guy, he's a damn good DCCC leader. A lot of damage control was required to correct the ill will harbored by many progressives concerning Rahm's bull-in-a-china-shop approach to candidate selection in the previous House cycle. Van Hollen stepped up to the plate and ameliorated that. It takes real leadership skills to accomplish that type of thing. Granted, I'm outside the district, but this IS a blog for Democrats, right. So, what the hell am I doing responding to a diary supporting a Rethug challenger's efforts to debate a Dem opponent?

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Sat Jul 12, 2008 at 12:25:26 AM PDT

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