Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Alpert Can't Catch A Break

Merrick Alpert must feel like the team, facing an umpire that works for his opponent. Alpert, you may recall, is the man, who cleaned the clock of Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, in the one and only debate, between the two candidates for the Democratic Party nomination for U.S. Senate. In reality, he's nothing more than a pest to the Democratic Party establishment.

Nancy DiNardo, the state party chairman, wishes he would just go away. So much for a chairman, who is above the fray, allowing the candidates to battle it out for the nomination. Blumenthal is the handpicked candidate of the Obama administration and DiNardo isn't about to do anything to upset the party apparatchik.

Alpert wants more debates with Blumenthal, but the AG won't give him any. You can understand why. Alpert looked like the New York Yankees playing the Bad News Bears in their Mar. 1 tete-a-tete. Alpert was vibrant, articulate and elucidated his positions on the issues. Blumenthal looked tired, stumbled and generally appeared uncomfortable from out behind his Attorney General's desk, before his quick getaway after the event, eschewing the media.

Now, thanks to some great reporting by the Norwich Bulletin, comes word Blumenthal has been allowed to set up a Senate candidate's office at state party central headquarters in Hartford. But how much is he paying for the space? When the Bulletin reporter asked, party officials said they'd get back. Turns out they could not find any documentation. Then, after some more stumbling, they called the reporter back, stating there was a verbal agreement between Blumenthal and party officials.

Hmmmm. This sounds like an arrangement the Attorney General should be investigating. It's right up his alley. Favoritism. No written contract. Except, this time, Blumenthal is on the accusing end. The Federal Elections Commission is even probing into the matter, although methinks nothing will happen, because the case involves the party establishment.

Meanwhile, DiNardo continues to take potshots at Alpert, who has the unmitigated gall of placing trust in the democratic system. He says he will battle Blumenthal right to the convention and might even seek a primary, if he doesn't receive the nod. Here's hoping democracy prevails.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Government Takes Care of Itself

How come it is okay for government officials to nominate their own for other government jobs, but other government officials have to wait a year, before going to work for a lobby firm in the private sector? And whatever happened to equal opportunity employment?
These are questions, which need to be asked, with word Governor M. Jodi Rell has nominated two members of her administration to Superior Court judgeships. Public Safety Commissioner John Danaher will be out of a job, once her administration ends in January. Same for her budget director Robert Genuario. Neither need not worry about seeking work in the private sector. Both have been nominated to be Superior Court Judges. After the usual gamesmanship and horse swapping by the Democrats on the legislature's judiciary committee, both will be approved, assured of a healthy salary, generous benefits and a handsome pension. Neither will have to sit out a year. Neither will be overtly subjected to EOE laws government has hoisted on the private sector.
Of course, this happens all the time, even though Gov. Rell continues to act "above the fray." Lose an election? You need not worry. Either major party will hire you for a taxpayer funded legislative job, that pays much more than the private sector. And the politicians wonder why there is a huge chasm between the government and its people?
Those who work for a governor, or serve in a government post, should be forced to sit out for at least a year, before they return to work in government. In the interim, it's the same old story and Gov. Rell is as much a part of the culture, regardless of how much she attempts to act "above the fray."

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

No Blumy Surprise

That state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal did not join in with 13 other attorneys general to challenge the Obama Healthcare bill comes as no surprise. Blumenthal, who is trying to distance himself from Sen. Dodd, is walking arm-and-arm with his policies. Dodd placed the $100M UConn hospital payoff in the bill and House members didn't remove it. Blumenthal supports Obamacare and the cost that goes with it. Changing the Washington culture means not voting for Blumenthal in the 2010 U.S. Senate race. Simple as that. The state's Republicans and Independents, both groups that give Blumy strong marks, need to come to that realization.