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                                       politics + culture

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Samm Simpson vs. C.W. Young in FL-10

Local blogger, Andy Ostroy of the the Ostroy Report echoes Dan Walter at Joe Trippi.com, Samm Simpson is turning heads and raising eyebrows in her race to unseat 18 term Congressman C.W. "Bill" Young in Florida's 10th Congressional District.

First-time candidate and grandmother Samm Simpson is, for someone so unorthodox, impressive. Per Dan Walters:

Simpson, with the help of volunteers, qualified to be on the ballot by obtaining in five weeks more than 4,000 signatures of people in the district, which Al Gore barely won in 2000 and President Bush barely won in 2004.

Four thousand signatures in five weeks. That’s pretty impressive.


Or take Simpson's response in this interview with Andy Ostroy:

Ostroy Report: Why run for Congress and take on an 18-term incumbent in a solid Bush country?

Simpson: Anybody who is concerned about their individual freedoms needs to sound an alarm. I've been watching our Constitution crumble since 2000, and in January of 2006, after watching more of the President's rhetoric about terrorism and the war in Iraq, I felt compelled to run. At first I thought I'd be a write in candidate. I told the Democratic Party I'd like to do this and discovered they had no one else. Then I found out that it cost $9726 to have my name on the ballot. This is set by the Florida legislature and part of the problem, don't you think? The other alternative was to get signed petitions. So we got 'em. First time in the history of Pinellas County that a Federal Candidate qualified by petitions. But it's not just the war, the corruption, the greed the sellout out of our public policy to corporations and the eroding of the social contract and middle class purchasing power that propels me to run for elected office. It's also about the Constitution and the sacred fabric of the law that my father fought for, and our forefathers died for. Congress is standing by blindly allowing this President and administration to flagrantly disrespect our own Constitution.


Sheesh, sounds like a potential netroots candidate to me. But is C.W. Young vulnerable in the least? Let's see. Far from being solid Bush country, Joshua Grossman of Progressive Punch.org classified this district as a pure toss-up. Bush won FL-10 with 51% of the vote in 2004 after losing it narrowly in 2000; do any of us think GWB and the GOP Congress will be more popular this time around?

Why don't we take a look at C.W. Young's voting record? This guy never met a tax break for the wealthy that he didn't like. And as far as pork goes, well, C.W. Bill Young could be called one of the "Kings of Pork"...per the NYT (via the Economist's View):

The culture of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee is one of great power and little scrutiny. Mr. Wilkes said every member appeared to have a personal allowance of millions of dollars to disburse without public disclosure...

In the spending bill for this fiscal year, each member took credit for an average $27 million in earmarks, with the chairman, Representative C. W. Bill Young, Republican of Florida, claiming about $125 million, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense, a nonpartisan group that tracks earmarks.


The question for the voters of Pinellas County and FL-10 is who best represents their interests in 2006, and whether anyone outside the district will help all those folks inside FL-10 hoping to give Samm Simpson a fighting chance. Will local bloggers like Andy Ostroy and the Florida Progressive Coalition continue to write about and focus on this race? I certainly hope so.

If there's a year for a political unknown to defeat an entrenched incumbent in a toss-up district, 2006 is it.

5 Comments:

  • Simpson's problem is fundraising... She can't get the big money donations, nor can she get the attention of the Netroots on Daily Kos or MyDD.

    By the way, new interview with Samm posted by Michael Hussey at Pushing Rope

    By Blogger John F., at 12:54 PM  

  • i just copied and pasted stuff from here onto dkos, hope that's ok

    By Anonymous gerrycody, at 4:57 PM  

  • FYI: This district is purple. Gor won it in 2000. And she's now made a tv buy with 3 strong comercials. Check them out at http://www.sammsimpsonforcongress.com/

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:08 PM  

  • District is purple. Gore won it in 2000. She's got 3 great tv ads on her site: http://www.sammsimpsonforcongress.com

    By Blogger stpeteguy, at 11:09 PM  

  • Samm will be speaking on Air America tonight at 9 PM, along with Congrssman Wexlar. If you haven't heard her speak on the issues, listen in and you will be "sold" on her candidacy.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:01 AM  

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