Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Insurance Lobbyists & Stivers = Best Friends

> Republican candidate for Congress, a former bank lobbyist, Steve Stivers always brags about his tort reform (Senate Bill 80). The Cleveland Free Times (6/18/2003) had this take on that bill.......

....the State Senate last week approved a bill in a very unusual manner that would make it virtually impossible to sue big companies for harming you. Under Senate Bill 80, written by insurance industry lobbyists and sponsored by freshman State Senator Steve Stivers of Columbus, limits on non-economic damages would range from $500,000 to $1 million, and the bill would cap punitive damages at $100,000.....

Isn't great to know that Stivers got together with those insurance industry lobbyists to get their preferences for this bill? Looks like Stivers didn't care what the bill did to people. I guess if voters want someone who will work for lobbyists and corporations, they should vote for Stivers. If they want a member of Congress who will work for people, they'll vote for Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Shocking Things

> > I would never let my daughters join the military. If you have daughters, be sure to read about the possible Army cover up of rape and murder of women soldiers. The Democratic Underground has this:

The Department of Defense statistics are alarming — one in three women who join the US military will be sexually assaulted or raped by men in the military. The warnings to women should begin above the doors of the military recruiting stations, as that is where assaults on women in the military begins — before they are even recruited.

But, now, even more alarming, are deaths of women soldiers in Iraq, and in the United States, following rape. The military has characterized each of the deaths of women who were first sexually assaulted as deaths from “non-combat related injuries,” and then added “suicide.” Yet, the families of the women whom the military has declared to have committed suicide, strongly dispute the findings and are calling for further investigations into the deaths of their daughters......

> The payday lenders in Ohio are fighting any restrictions on the astronomical interest rates they charge. Republican Steve Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, continues to support the payday lenders.

WKYC is reporting that the city of Parma has put some restrictions on payday lenders. At least it is a start.

> I'm listening to this Bush press conference on TV. Bush says he thinks McCain will be the next president. OMG!

> Mother Jones has the story about John McCain's spiritual guide, right wing pastor, Rod Parsley:

Senator John McCain hailed as a spiritual adviser an Ohio megachurch pastor who has called upon Christians to wage a "war" against the "false religion" of Islam with the aim of destroying it.

On February 26, McCain appeared at a campaign rally in Cincinnati with the Reverend Rod Parsley of the World Harvest Church of Columbus, a supersize Pentecostal institution that features a 5,200-seat sanctuary, a television studio (where Parsley tapes a weekly show), and a 122,000-square-foot Ministry Activity Center. That day, a week before the Ohio primary, Parsley praised the Republican presidential front-runner as a "strong, true, consistent conservative." The endorsement was important for McCain, who at the time was trying to put an end to the lingering challenge from former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, a favorite among Christian evangelicals. A politically influential figure in Ohio, Parsley could also play a key role in McCain's effort to win this bellwether state in the general election. McCain, with Parsley by his side at the Cincinnati rally, called the evangelical minister a "spiritual guide."....

Here is a YouTube video of McCain with Parsley:

McCain has Parsley and Hagee are right wing religious zealots. Why is McCain getting advice from them???

Monday, April 28, 2008

McCain Is The Real Elitist

The country is involved in an endless war in Iraq. People in this country are losing their homes and jobs. Businesses are closing. No matter how bad it gets, Republican presidential candidate, John McCain, can't talk about it, because his pro-war, pro-Bush, pro-right wing agenda has hurt the American people. Instead of focusing on how he'd fix this country, McCain is creating lies about Obama.

The Ottawa Citizen has an article about Obama's humble beginnings:

...Obama is no elitist. He was raised by a single mother who was once on food stamps. He has spent much of his career as a lawyer defending poor people. He had no real money until he made $4 million in royalties from his best-selling books, which allowed him to pay off his student loans only last year.....

...McCain....comes from military royalty (his father and grandfather were admirals) and is married to an heiress. He has spent years in Congress.

Ms. Clinton also says Mr. Obama is an elitist. This from a graduate of Wellesley and Yale Law School who was named one of the 100 leading lawyers in America. She and her husband, the one who was president, are worth $109 million.....

McCain appears to be a real elitist. You must visit the Architecture Digest slide show of just one of John McCain's homes. The slide show is of his large home in Phoenix. I especially like the fancy "elitist" pool and "etlitist" spa. The article for Architecture Digest is here.

If you'd like to read about the McCain Ranch in Sedona and his barbecue for his traveling journalists, check here. Then of course, there is the McCain condo in Phoenix, pictured on the bottom of the page at Sedonablog.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A Dose of Reality

*** Did you know that Republican John McCain voted against re-authorizing SCHIP? McCain said he was "totally in favor" of Bush's Social Security plan. You remember those plans to privatize Social Security???

*** Fundraisers for Democratic candidate for Ohio's 15th district, Mary Jo Kilroy, are usually held at the home of real people. Some of the people who attend the fundraisers are teachers, office workers, nurses, retirees, just ordinary people. Kilroy knows about the plight of the average workers having difficulty feeding their families and putting gasoline in the car.

Meanwhile, over at the Republican candidate's campaign, Steve Stivers, former bank lobbyist, seems amazed about how "the economy is just overshadowing everything." (Link: Wash. Post) Hmmm. Does Stivers have any contact with normal everyday activities? Does he go to the grocery store? Has he seen the price of milk, eggs, flour, and other food? Does he drive his own car and fill up his own tank or does he have his "help" take care of those things?

* Opensecrets has the totals for Ohio's 15 congressional district---
Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy has raised $1,208,858
Republican (former bank lobbyist) Steve Stivers has raised $788,840

68% of Kilroy's contributions are from individuals.
46% of Stivers' contributions are from individuals.

This shows you that real people feel motivated enough to make contributions to Kilroy's campaign. In these difficult economic times, that is a strong statement.

Friday, April 25, 2008


Mary Jo Kilroy, Democratic candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district, has updated her website. Visit here.

---Republican congressional candidate and former bank lobbyist, Steve Stivers sponsored and promoted SB 80 which was passed in the Ohio legislature. What is SB80 and how can it harm YOU?

SB 80 was tort reform and it severely limited what a person can get from a law suit. (This is how Stivers protects all his bestest friends like banks, insurance companies, law firms, and large corporations.) There is plenty of information about SB 80, but here is a tidbit:

The most arbitrary and unfair provision of SB 80 is that it limits what an independent jury can award a victim for "noneconomic damages."

Noneconomic damages are intended to compensate victims for their very real losses beyond economic damages (medical bills and lost wages). Such losses generally are those that negatively affect one's quality of life. In legal terms, noneconomic damages include, but are not limited to, permanent disfigurement, permanent disability, loss of a limb, loss of eyesight, loss of sexual functions, loss of fertility, loss of the ability to perform life sustaining functions and a lifetime of physical and emotional pain.

By treating economic and noneconomic damages differently, arbitrary caps create a two-tiered legal system. Caps unfairly discriminate against those who either earn a lower income or have no income at all.....


>>>> According to Open Secrets, Hillary Clinton is $15 million in debt.

>>> Last night I watched HBO's Real Sports. Bryant Gumbel interviewed Sen. Barack Obama and they discussed Obama's love of basketball. Obama played high school basketball. You can visit the Real Sports website to get more information on the rebroadcast of this story or visit You Tube. (I wonder if Obama could challenge McCain to a game of basketball.)

>> Just when you thought Rush Limbaugh had exhausted his list of stupid comments, he tops it again. Now Limbaugh wants to see riots in the streets during the Democratic Convention.

>>> Isn't it incredible that the Republicans, who have created this war and this recession, have no new ideas so they create controversy and chaos? McCain won't talk about his love of Rev. Hagee who insults and attacks Catholics. McCain won't explain why he can't offer a real economic package because he doesn't understand economics. McCain has befriended large corporations, PACs, and lobbyists and gets to fly on their private jets. Most of all, John McCain wants to let your sons and daughters in the military to continue to fight in the Iraq War f-o-r-e-v-e-r.

Haven't we had enough of the politics of distraction? It is time to get to work in rebuilding our country. We cannot afford another Republican in the White House.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Thursday's Notes

> I've got to get one of these! There is an anti-Steve Stivers bumper sticker! (Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, is the Republican candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district. Mary Jo Kilroy is the Democratic candidate.)
Order your anti-Stivers bumper sticker today!!!! Awesome!!!!!
Stivers? No! Anti-Stivers Bumper Sticker

> Democrats should try this: The Ohio State Medical Association PAC sent out cards to Ohio physicians to promote the candidacy of Republican members of the Ohio Supreme Court. Physicians were encouraged to put the "information cards" in their waiting rooms for patients to read. Stratton's name was one of the justices on those cards from OSMAPAC.

> The Dispatch has an article about Ohio State's newest member of the football team......Justin Boren. If that name sounds familiar, it is because he played in a blue uniform last year.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Take A Look

Take a look at the contributions to Republican candidate, Steve Stivers as reported by the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

Please note: The list above is only a sampling of contributors to the candidate and it does not include all of the money given to the Stivers campaign.
As you can see, Stivers, the former bank lobbyist, is getting money from PACs that represent banks, life/health insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, etc. Why would these types of groups give money to Stivers? They are trying to promote their agendas.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Hanging Out With Lobbyists

I found a great picture of Republican candidate and former bank lobbyist, Steve Stivers speaking to a lobbying group, the Ohio Cast Metals Association. I guess these former lobbyists like meeting with other lobbyists. No wonder he gets so many contributions from PACs!

Democratic candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district, Mary Jo Kilroy, has received more campaign contributions from real people.

Friday, April 18, 2008

The Good and The Bad

The Good News!!!!!

Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland is getting ready to refine his plan for state funding for education.
...The governor plans to host regional summit meetings across the state to build support for what he's calling an education "reform agenda" he plans to unveil next year....

The Colbert Report ended a week in Philadelphia by having both Democratic Presidential candidates on the broadcast. Visit The Colbert Report.

The Bad News

> It appears that the Ohio legislature will pass a watered down bill to restrict the payday lenders. The Republican controlled Ohio legislature at first wanted to help consumers, but then they heard from the payday lenders themselves who cried crocodile tears at a recent hearing. Payday lenders charge 390% interest on loans. The payday lenders said that if they were restricted to only charging 36% on loans, it would drive them out of the state because they wouldn't be able to make any money. (The Springfield News has more.) Will our elected officials vote to help consumers or the payday lenders?

> Republican John McCain has large numbers of lobbyists advising his campaign. Some of the lobbyists include Phil Gramm, Rick Davis, Steve Schmidt, Mark McKinnon, Charles R. Black, Jr., Tom Loeffler, and others (Washington Post).

> Be warned! Mrs. Laura Bush and one of her daughters will be on The Today Show next week. I won't be watching.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Analysis of Republican Candidate Stivers' Voting Record

Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy is a great candidate for Ohio's 15th district. As a Franklin County Commissioner, she has worked hard to help every citizen in the county as well as her special efforts to help our veterans. People know where Kilroy stands. Here is more from Emily's List about Kilroy:

...Kilroy’s accomplishments in Franklin County include instituting strong ethics policies and expanding
access to affordable housing and health care. She’s balanced every county budget, helping the county earn “AAA” ratings from Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s. During Kilroy’s tenure, Franklin County has been ranked one of the five best-managed counties in the country by Governing magazine.....

However, Republican candidate Steve Stivers, promotes himself as a moderate, but Emily's List has a few facts about the real Steve Stivers:

....Stivers styles himself as a moderate, but his voting record on fiscal and social issues is anything but. One of four Republican senators who voted against bipartisan legislation to curb predatory lending practices, Stivers has consistently opposed consumer protection efforts — a reflection of his loyalty to the banking industry (he was a longtime lobbyist for one of Ohio’s largest banks). He says he is pro-choice, but has consistently voted against reproductive freedom, earning “0” ratings from Ohio NARAL. In 2004, Stivers voted to require doctors to prescribe three times the necessary dosage of RU-486, effectively tripling the cost of medical abortions. Two years later, he voted to codify Ohio’s ban on funding for abortions for poor women. Stivers even worked against an amendment requiring insurance companies to cover contraception. In a moment of sleazy candor, Stivers made an offensive remark about a group of high school girls visiting the state Senate. According to the Canton Repository, when Stivers was reminded that he had just returned from his honeymoon, he said, “I’m allowed to window shop, just not buy.”
....Stivers, who will be amply funded by corporate and right-wing special interests, expressed no concern about Kilroy’s head start, saying “Fundraising has never been my shortcoming.” He raised over $400,000 in just seven weeks for his campaign, which is being managed by the Ohio state political director for Bush-Cheney 2004....

This info just makes me sick------
....In a moment of sleazy candor, Stivers made an offensive remark about a group of high school girls visiting the state Senate....

Yuck. My daughter was not one of the high school girls visiting the Ohio Senate that day, but I am still offended by his behavior.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Help Make Ohio's 15th District Blue

WTOL-TV is reporting that candidates for Ohio's 15th congressional district, Democrat, Mary Jo Kilroy, and Republican, Steve Stivers raised nearly the same amount of money for the last quarter. For those of you who don't know much about the 2006 election, it is important to note that Kilroy lost to Republican Deborah Pryce by only 1,006 votes.

Most of Kilroy's financial support is coming directly from individuals. However, Republican Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, is receiving a majority of his contributions from PACs representing banks, insurance companies, and other one issue groups. (In these troubling economic times and foreclosures increasing everyday, how can anyone support a person who is a former bank lobbyist?)

If you really want to bring change to Washington, you can help by providing support for Mary Jo Kilroy. With Kilroy in the House of Representatives, people will be more important than pharmaceutical PACs, oil companies, and financial institutions. Kilroy aims to change the way Washington works, create good jobs and a strong economy, make health care affordable and available, and work toward energy independence.

If you are looking to really support a candidate that will help bring change to our country, drop in and contribute to Kilroy for Congress.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Notes from Central Ohio

> Why are Republicans in the Ohio legislature trying to push through an energy bill that will only give Ohioans higher utility bills? Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland has promised a veto if "...the bill does not protect consumers against unwarranted and unjust rate increases." (Dispatch)

> There have been few published reports about Republican congressional candidate, Steve Stivers, a former bank lobbyist. It makes you wonder if he is staying out of the public eye to avoid questions like ----
a.) Why does Stivers support having no cap on interest rates at payday lenders?
b.) Why does he continue to court and meet with lobbyists associated with banks (OBL: #1, #2) ?

> According to the NY Times, some of our most familiar retailers are going bankrupt or suffering from the recession:

....Since last fall, eight mostly midsize chains — as diverse as the furniture store Levitz and the electronics seller Sharper Image — have filed for bankruptcy protection as they staggered under mounting debt and declining sales.

But the troubles are quickly spreading to bigger national companies, like Linens ‘n Things, the bedding and furniture retailer with 500 stores in 47 states. It may file for bankruptcy as early as this week, according to people briefed on the matter.

Even retailers that can avoid bankruptcy are shutting down stores to preserve cash through what could be a long economic downturn. Over the next year, Foot Locker said it would close 140 stores, Ann Taylor will start to shutter 117, and the jeweler Zales will close 100.....

How will this impact central Ohio?

Monday, April 14, 2008

Ohio News

> If you smell something in the air Tuesday coming from the western part of Ohio, please be warned: Karl Rove will be visiting his good Republican friends Jon Husted, Mary Taylor, John Kasich, and other GOP office holders, according to WHIO.

> In an opinion piece in the Morning Journal, Republican Jon Husted's energy proposal is called a
"Trojan Horse." Here are some excerpts from the piece:

...The bill, which House Speaker John Husted rolled out last week, is a slap in the face to Ohio's consumers and a danger to Ohio's hopes of keeping and attracting business and jobs.....
....A close, overnight study of the actual bill's full 68 pages of tangled legalese found the rat in the woodpile: It would allow ''unwarranted and unjust rate increases'' and allow utilities, starting with FirstEnergy, ''to go to market, exposing business and consumers'' in our area ''to the risk of skyrocketing electricity prices,'' to quote Gov. Strickland, who vowed to veto it if passed as-is.

The governor also complained that Husted's version of the energy bill would allow secret ''side deals'' between utilities and business that might not be in the public interest, with no way for consumers or the media to examine them, because the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio would no longer be in the loop.....

Hopefully, Gov. Strickland and the good people of Ohio will stop Husted's gift to energy/utility companies.

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Since the Republicans lost their majority in the House of Representatives, the loss of power has made Republican Rep. Deborah Pryce (OH-15) apathetic about the people in her congressional district. Soon after Pryce announced that she would not run for re-election in November 2008, she basically started her retirement. According to the Washington Post, Pryce has missed 203 votes (15.1%) during the current Congress. Now Pryce will not work to help get funding for the demolition of the 5th Avenue dam project along the Olentangy River.


....The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers couldn't secure more than $1 million needed to pay for the $1.82 million project.
Officials in the corps' district office in Huntington, W.Va., were recently told they would receive only $100,000 for environmental testing.
The $1.18 million U.S. Rep. Deborah Pryce inserted in legislation to help pay for the project was removed and wasn't included in an appropriations bill President Bush signed in December.
Pryce, an Upper Arlington Republican, won't go after the earmark for 2009, said her aide, Rob Nichols....

Pryce apparently is still able to collect her full salary despite the fact that she only reports to the House of Representatives part of the time. Wouldn't you like to have a job like that--- full salary, great benefits, terrific retirement-- and yet only report to work some of the time??????

Pryce has always done her best to be friendly with pharmaceutical, oil/natural resources, bank/financial institutions, and large corporations. She enjoyed money from their PACs and other special trips that allowed her to meet/golf with lobbyists. Now, with her retirement looming, the money and fun is just not the same and her attitude and dedication to her constituents is gone.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

They Don't Think We Care

The slow moving Republicans in the Ohio legislature have just seemed to discover that Ohioans do not approve of the "payday lenders" and their business practices. In today's Dispatch, Republican Speaker of the House Jon Husted said "....that he senses growing support in his caucus for a lower interest-rate cap on payday lenders, and he wants a bill passed within two weeks...."

{Don't you wish that he'd also get Ohio school funding passed that quickly?}

However, some of the Republicans just aren't hearing very well. Some of these legislators who are friendly with "payday lenders" need to hear from you. If you would like to get involved in some political action, call or e-mail the following Republicans (from the Ohio House Financial Institutions, Real Estate, and Securities Committee) and tell them you want a cap on "payday lenders" asap:

Jon Husted: tel. (614) 644-6008 Fax (614) 791-3591 Email:
William Batchelder: tel. (614) 466-8140 Fax (614) 719-3969 Email:
Chris Widener: tel. (614) 466-1470 Fax (614) 719-6984 Email:
Kevin Bacon: tel. (614) 644-6030 Fax (614) 719-6960 Email:
Clyde Evans: tel. (614) 466-1366 Fax (614) 719-6987 Email:
David T. Daniels: tel. (614) 466-3506 Fax (614) 719-6986 Email:
Randy Gardner: tel. (614) 466-8104 Fax (614) 719-0006 Email:
Bob Gibbs: tel. (614) 466-2994 Fax (614) 719-6997 Email:
Cliff Hite: tel. (614) 466-3819 Fax (614) 719-3976 Email:
Tom Patton: tel. (614) 466-4895 Fax (614) 719-6957 Email:
Carol-Ann Schindel: tel. (614) 644-6074 Fax (614) 719-3963 Email:
Barbara R. Sears: tel. (614) 466-1731 Fax (614) 719-6946 Email:
James J. Zehringer: tel. (614) 466-6344 Fax (614) 719-3977 Email:

Republicans on the Ohio Senate Financial and Financial Institutions Committee:
John Carey, Steve Stivers, Ron Amstutz, Steve Austria, Gary Cates, Keith Faber, Tom Niehaus, Joy Padgett,
Mark Wagoner

Note: Steve Stivers is the Republican candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district. Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, has previously voted against putting a cap on interest from payday lenders.

Take some time and let these elected officials know that you care about this legislation.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Wednesday's Notes


...The Iraq vets' efforts have gained the most headway in Ohio's 15th district, where the first of the 17 members of the organization to win a primary race is State Sen. Steve Stivers. While he says he admires both Sen. McCain and Gen. Petraeus, he isn't making Iraq policy the centerpiece of his campaign. "I'll talk about Iraq with anyone who asks me, but now it's not the first issue on people's minds," the 43-year-old Ohio native says. "Jobs and the economy are where my focus is."

After several prominent Republicans declined to run this year, Mr. Stivers threw his hat into the ring to succeed retiring Rep. Deborah Pryce. He won the March 4 primary with 66% of the vote, but his prospects in November are dicey. Sen. Barack Obama, who has trumpeted his antiwar record, carried the counties that compose most of Mr. Stivers's district, including the Columbus suburbs, where Sen. Obama beat Sen. Hillary Clinton by 14 points. The district is also home to the main campus of Ohio State University, where a Republican candidate's call to "complete the mission" in Iraq is more likely to drive turnout for the Democrats than for Mr. Stivers.....

Stivers supports McCain's 100 year war in Iraq, and therefore, he will not initiate the conversation about Iraq. Democratic candidate, Mary Jo Kilroy, is definitely supporting a safe withdrawal of our troops from Iraq.

Stivers says he is focusing on jobs and the economy? Terrific. Unfortunately, Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, is supporting jobs and the paychecks for bankers. His legislative support for banks/lenders and even "payday lenders" shows that he has no plans to help regular Ohioans, consumers, or those facing foreclosure. Stivers is also part of the Republican controlled state legislature which works 2-3 days per week to further their right wing political agendas.

This year I hope that all the votes get counted in the 15th district and that it totals up to a win for Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy.

* There is some big time fighting going on in the Lucas County Republican Party, according to the Toledo Blade. I guess this shows that Ohio's Republicans are not all united together in perfect harmony.

* WTOL is reporting that Republican Ohio State Senate candidate, John Schulte was found "guilty" on Tuesday of felony-level stalking and telephone harassment...

* Did you ever wonder why the telephone-based political polls are not reliable? Many younger voters do not have "land lines" but instead rely totally on their cellphones. Those pollsters are not calling the cell phones only the "older" people, like me, (over 35) who have traditional home phones.

* After watching the Senate hearings yesterday it is clear that the Bush administration and the Republicans want nothing more than to force their Iraq agenda down our throats. Only the Democratic Senators had the backbone to ask the hard questions.

Here are some points that were made:

1. The Bush administration is paying the "Sons of Iraq" to work for our military. They are being paid two times the average salary in Iraq.

2. The government of Iraq has a large surplus in their treasury while our country is ringing up deficits.

3. Senator Lindsay Graham's questions were just repeating the Bush talking points about the war. With so many military men and women from his state in Iraq, he should be looking for the truth and not try to prop up his support of a one hundred year war.

4. Senator Susan Collins tried to act tough but she has voted twice against pulling out the troops.

5. Senator Claire McCaskill said that South Korea, Germany, and Japan had paid the U.S. government to have our troops and bases in their respective countries. However, Iraq is doing no such thing.

6. Senator Ben Nelson tried to explain to Petraeus and Crocker that the money they were asking for was billions of dollars and "not pencil dust."

I think that the hearings helped many Americans see that it is time to let the Iraqis decide their own destinies without us contributing more money and more American lives.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Eyes on Ohio's 15th CD

* It appears that Ohio's 15th congressional district is getting plenty of attention from lots of people. Here is a snippet from Real Clear Politics:

....Ohio'’s 15th: Republican Rep. Deborah Pryce barely held on last time, defeating Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy by 1,000 votes in a come-from-behind win. Kilroy is back, but Pryce has decided to call it quits. State Sen. Steve Stivers (R) initially passed on the race but has changed his mind. He should be a formidable candidate in November. While Bush barely squeezed by Kerry four years ago, Franklin County (Columbus) has been moving toward the Democrats....

I think the November race with Democrat Kilroy against Republican Stivers will be a tight race. However, there were some Democrats that voted for Pryce in the last election because of her help on specific problems. I don't think that the GOP candidate, Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, has the kind of base and following that Pryce enjoyed. Given the foreclosure crisis in central Ohio, many people might be reluctant to vote for someone like Stivers who champions the rights of banks/lenders over consumers. In this area, everyone knows at least someone who has been touched by the mortgage crisis.

* Mary Jo Kilroy, Democratic candidate for Ohio's 15th district, has received an endorsement from SNAP, a student PAC founded at Yale University. See the article at the Huffington Post.

*** Project Vote Smart: Steve Stivers voted against this bill- Am Sub SB 185, May 2006. Here is a synopsis of the bill-----

Expands the application of the Consumer Sales Practices Act to include certain consumer transactions in connection with a residential mortgage. Generally prohibits the appraisal of real estate for a mortgage loan without state certification or licensure. Prohibits any person from corrupting or improperly influencing the independent judgment of a real estate appraiser with respect to the value of the dwelling offered as security for a mortgage loan. Requires that a national criminal background check be conducted on all applicants for a real estate appraiser certificate or license, a mortgage broker certificate of registration, or a loan officer license...

Wow. This legislation seems like a good idea. The bill was written to protect citizens from unscrupulous, dishonest lenders, and yet Steve Stivers voted against it in order to support his banker buddies. Tsk. Tsk. Tsk.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Why is Republican Steve Stivers supporting and working with insurance lobbyists????

Republican Rep. Steve Stivers, former bank lobbyist and current Republican candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district, seems to be very friendly with the largest and most powerful insurance lobby in the country. (National Conference of Insurance Legislators) is part of an insurance lobbying firm that (from NCOIL website) works against insurance regulation:

The purpose of NCOIL is to help legislators make informed decisions on insurance issues that affect their constituents and to declare opposition to federal encroachment of state authority to oversee the business of insurance...
Many legislators active in NCOIL chair or are members of the committees responsible for insurance in their respective state houses across the country.....

Stivers is a voting member of the Executive committee, along with Ohio Republicans William Batchelder, Keith Faber, and Jay Hottinger.

Here is how Common Dreams described the insurance lobby and NCOIL:

....The insurance lobby has picked a battleground that is inaccessible to most consumer advocates and concerned citizens. Rather than debating the merits of deregulation in Congress or the state capitals nationwide, the insurance lobby has taken its plans to two private forums: the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and the National Conference of Insurance Legislators. The NAIC, an association of state regulators, is heavily influenced by the insurance industry. The NCOIL membership consists of state legislators who often side with the insurance industry in state legislatures.

The NAIC and NCOIL are cozy clubs where insurance lobbyists and the public officials they control meet without being bothered by the inefficiencies of democratic government. Both organizations like to hold their meetings in high-class hotels. State officials can afford to be there because their expenses are subsidized, or paid for outright, by the insurance lobbyists' attendance fees. Hospitality suites abound for the regulators. And, there is no shortage of insurance industry lobbyists wanting to treat the regulators to fine dinners....

Steve Stivers is not only a former bank lobbyist who sides with banks/lenders but also best friends with insurance companies and insurance lobbyists! Does Stivers work for the people in his district or just banks and insurance companies????

Visit Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy's website and help her defeat a lobbyist's best friend, Stivers.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Some Members of Lima Company Returning to Iraq

You probably remember the Marine Reserve company called Lima Company. Here is the original article from The Washington Post (August 4, 2005):

A Marine Reserve company that was known as "Lucky Lima" before suffering heavy casualties in May was hit Wednesday by the deadliest roadside bombing of the Iraq war, a massive explosion that killed 14 Marines and the unit's Iraqi interpreter, according to witnesses and military spokesmen....
.....As it turned out, Lima Company and the rest of the 25th Regiment were beginning four months in which they would be bombed and ambushed in the grimy Euphrates River towns where U.S. commanders say foreign insurgents had moved freely. During the tour, 16 members of Lima Company have been killed, according to a military spokesman in Columbus, Ohio, 1st Sgt. James Halbig.

As a whole, the 25th Regiment suffered 20 dead in May and June. Then, with Wednesday's bombing and two attacks Monday, the number of dead more than doubled, to 41....

When they returned home, they were assured by their military commanders that their next deployment would not be Iraq. Knowing members of Lima Company and seeing them at special events, the people of Ohio have really embraced and honored these Marines and their sacrifice.

Then in today's Dispatch..........

Ten Marine reservists with Columbus-based Lima Company have been called up for another tour of duty in Iraq. Nine of them fought in Iraq when 23 members of the company were killed.....

....All 10 of the Marines have served in Iraq before, said Capt. Paul Greenberg, a spokesman with the Marine Forces Reserve Headquarters in New Orleans.

The Marine reservists are being mobilized to fill out the ranks of the 2nd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment based in Garden City, N.Y....

I'm sad to see these Marines sent back to Iraq. I'm also so sorry that so many of our young men and women in uniform have suffered so much because of Bush's war in Iraq. It is time to bring them home.

Friday, April 04, 2008

The Race for Ohio's 15th

Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy, candidate for Ohio's 15th congressional district, is very upset with the big bonuses that some CEO's of mortgage companies are receiving.
....The Democratic candidate for Congress in the 15th District, which includes much of Columbus and suburbs to the west, wants to end paydays for executives such as Angelo Mozilo and David Sambol of Countrywide Financial Corp., which is being acquired by Bank of America.

In a press release, Kilroy fingered the pair as the "architects" of the crash in the subprime lending market that has spilled over to Wall Street and left thousands of Ohioans in danger of losing their homes....

“It’s time to change the priorities in Washington so the powerful banking lobby no longer writes the rules to benefit Wall Street at the expense of Main Street," she said in the press release.....

Don't you wonder how Stivers feels about these mortgage kingpins?

> If you've looked at Open Secrets recently, you already know that Mary Jo Kilroy has received sixty-eight percent of her contributions from individuals. Her Republican opponent has only gotten forty-four percent of his campaign money from individuals. Kilroy also has a much larger campaign fund. Kilroy's Republican opponent, Steve Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, has heavy contributions from investment firms and large business PACs. Of course, I'm not surprised.

> Meanwhile, we still have to deal with our current member of Congress, Republican Rep. Deborah Pryce. Pryce continues to do her best to avoid voting. According to the Washington Post, Pryce has missed 198 votes (15.0%) during the current Congress... Way to go, Deb! Keep showing your constituents that you just don't care!!!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Ohio's Republicans Don't Have School Children as a Priority

The Republican controlled state legislature returns to work, according to the Newark Advocate, to work on these issues:
> Gov. Strickland's energy bill (the Republicans have done nothing with it for months.).
> a request to replace Ohio's touch screen voting machines. (Husted and his GOP buddies won't do anything but try to smear Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner.)
> possible Keno gambling in the state.
> consider placing Gov. Strickland's Building Ohio Jobs bond issue on the ballot....
> the capital construction budget requests...

Wow. Working only 2-3 days per week could really prove exhausting for the Ohio Republicans and they still have to work on these important areas. Wait..... I didn't see anything that indicates that Husted and his Republican buddies will work on public school funding!!!! Looks like the Ohio school children will still have to depend on those school levies. Unfortunately, Ohio's children are not a priority for the Ohio Republicans. While school districts cut reading specialists, art and music teachers, tutors, and classroom teachers because levies have failed, the Ohio Republicans are still able to get funds for stadiums and highway interchanges in their home district. (Hint: Husted.)

It is time to bring in a new Ohio legislature that will promise to fix school funding.