Can special interests buy the governor’s mansion?

As I reported earlier today, the BIAW has dropped another $4 million into the governor’s race, bringing their total for the cycle to over $7.2 million.  Well now  it appears that the Republican Governor’s Association has dumped another $3.5 million into their anti-Gregoire smear campaign, bringing their total to more than $5.5 million.

That’s $12.7 million in so-called “independent” expenditures on behalf of Dino Rossi, more than half of it coming just weeks before the election, a game-changing number that simply shatters previous state spending records.

How much of a game changer is this?  Well, to put it in perspective, $12.7 million is pretty much what Dino Rossi and Chris Gregoire spent combined in all of 2004.

This is not politics as usual; this is shock and awe.  The question is, will our media do their job and warn the public about this dangerous effort to buy our votes, or will they just shrug it off with the kind of “both sides do it” equivalency we’ve come to expect?


  1. 1

    Particle Man spews:

    Nope. The print and TV folks will stand back and hope for a close race even while stae govenment is sold to a radical organization with a puppet candidate.

  2. 2

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    O-blah-blah’s campaign gave ACORN over $800,000 to help them lie & cheat in their community organizing voter registration fraud.
    Other Dem groups like Move-On gave ACORN even more money.

    You don’t seem to have a problem with that.

    This is America…not Amerika..
    Folks can freely give to campaigns.
    It’s called free speech…which has become mighty expensive because the MSM is so far left.

  3. 3

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    The State Government Employees are worried if they might be among the 8,000 cut because Gregoire cannot handle her credit cards properly and is an OPM (other people’s money) addict.

  4. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    That’s $12.7 million they can’t spend to save U.S. Senate seats. A military strategist would call Gregoire “a diversion” — and it’s working like a charm.

    It’s like the Japanese Navy throwing away their aircraft carriers to capture a little island called Midway.

  5. 6

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Why We’ll Be Busy After Nov. 4

    The wingnuts won’t just wither away. An article by Paul Waldman in the liberal magazine American Prospect explains why we’ll have to continue saving America from fascist traitors after Obama’s landslide victory:

    ” … President Obama could face an opposition so consumed with disgust and anger and outright hate that it would make the 1990s look like a tea party. …

    “In this race he has had to deal not only with the institutional efforts against him from his opponent and the Republican National Committee, but with a widely distributed campaign of smears and lies spread through viral e-mails and extremist Web sites.

    “Unlike the McCain campaign, this broader effort will not fold up operations on Nov. 4. If Obama wins, the people now devoting their energies to seeing that he doesn’t get elected will … devote their energies to seeing that his presidency goes down in flames. …

    “Conservatives will quickly realize that the extraordinary challenges facing the government provide the opportunity for Obama to be … one of America’s greatest presidents.

    “No matter what else he does, there are four large tasks on which his term in office will likely be judged. If he sees the country through the current economic crisis, brings the war in Iraq to an end, passes health-care reform that actually achieves something close to universal coverage, and sets the country on a course away from a reliance on fossil fuels, Obama would be considered the most important president since Franklin D. Roosevelt. …

    “And that, of course, would be an unmitigated disaster for the GOP. It took 24 years after the death of the greatest Democratic president for an actual conservative (Richard Nixon) to win the White House, and Roosevelt’s legacy was such that even Ronald Reagan’s assaults on the New Deal and the Great Society were more rhetorical than substantive. …

    “The danger for the GOP is that Obama’s potential accomplishments could be just as lasting. If he does usher in a new energy paradigm, Republicans won’t get anywhere advocating a return to the old one …. If he guides us out of Iraq with a minimum of ensuing chaos, their foreign-policy and national security proposals will continue to be stained by the memory of conservative support for Bush’s disastrous escapades. If Obama actually passes health-care reform, Americans will be grateful to Democrats for at least mitigating one of our most anxiety-provoking public-policy problems. … If Obama sees us through to an economic revival, it will be almost impossible for them to explain why their ideas about the economy ought not be dismissed out of hand. …

    “[T]here is real potential for an Obama presidency to be truly transformative, which makes the stakes enormously high. Much higher than they were, certainly, when Bill Clinton was president. Which is why it’s worth remembering just how virulent the opposition to Clinton’s presidency was. …

    “If Obama prevails, the forces now arguing that he is some kind of America-hating Manchurian Candidate will turn their attention and their funding to a sustained campaign to delegitimize and hamstring the Obama presidency, so that as much of the administration’s time as possible is taken up with beating back one bogus charge after another. Without a doubt, the drones of the right-wing echo chamber will raise a new mountain of absurd charges, like termites constructing their mound from a mixture of twigs, dirt, and their own phlegm.”

    (Quoted under fair use.)

  6. 8

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “Poll: Obama Opens 14-Point Lead On McCain

    “CBS News/New York Times Survey Shows Major Swing Among Independents, Suggests McCain’s Strategy May Be Hurting Him

    “(CBS) … The Obama-Biden ticket now leads the McCain-Palin ticket 53 percent to 39 percent among likely voters, a 14-point margin. …

    “Among independents who are likely voters … the Democratic ticket now leads by 18 points. …

    “McCain’s campaign strategy may be hurting hurt him: Twenty-one percent of voters say their opinion of the Republican has changed for the worse in the last few weeks. The top two reasons cited for the change of heart are McCain’s attacks on Obama and his choice of Sarah Palin as running mate.

    “McCain’s favorable rating has fallen four points from last week, to 36 percent, and is now lower than his 41 percent unfavorable rating. … [A] majority of registered voters now say they are not confident in McCain to make the right decisions on economic issues. … [M]ore registered voters say McCain is likely to raise their taxes (51 percent) than say Obama will raise their taxes (46 percent). … A majority of voters, 54 percent, are not confident in McCain to handle health care ….”

    (Quoted under fair use.)

    Roger Rabbit Commentary: These are disastrous numbers for the McCain camp. The polls are moving into LBJ-vs-Goldwater territory. The sky is falling on the wingnuts. If this trend continues Obama could win over 40 states.

  7. 9

    cynickal spews:

    Hey, Mr Cynical, quit stealing my name.

    And get an f’ing clue. McCain was ACORN’s key note speaker in 2006.

    Plus I don’t know about you but when budgets get tight *I* scale back and downsize, like Gregoire is doing. It’s called responsible budgeting. Unlike the credit card budgets that the Republican’s have been living off of for the last 8 years on the federal level.

  8. 10

    correctnotright spews:

    @2: I have already challenged cynical to come up with any real evidence of anything more than a couple of isolated cases of voter fraud – let’s see it. Voter fraud – not voter registration problems – but actual voter fraud. You see, there ain’t no evidence. That is exactly the reason a bunch of US Attorneys got fired – because they could not trump up any evidence. This is the original red herring – and it is the last resort of liars and fools. See the cogent analysis below:

    This involved using the American Center for Voting Rights to give “think tank” cachet to the unproven idea that voter fraud is a major problem. The center’s work was used to support the passage of onerous voter-identification laws that depress turnout among the poor, minorities and the elderly – groups more likely to vote Democratic.

    The short organizational history of the center, chronicled indefatigably by Brad Friedman of the Brad Blog, shows that the group was founded in March 2005, just days before its representatives testified at a congressional hearing on election-administration issues chaired by then-Rep. (and now federal inmate) Bob Ney. The group was headed by Mr. Hearne, national election counsel to Bush-Cheney ’04, and staffed with other Republican operatives, including Jim Dyke, a former RNC communications director.

    Consisting of little more than a post-office box and some staffers who wrote reports and gave helpful quotes about the pervasive problem to the press, the group identified Democratic cities as hot spots for voter fraud, then pushed the argument that “election integrity” required making it harder for people to vote.

    The American Center for Voting Rights argued extensively by anecdote, such as someone, somewhere registering Mary Poppins to vote. Anecdote would then be coupled with statistics showing problems with voter rolls not being purged of voters who had died or moved, leaving open the potential for fraudulent voting. Given this great potential for mischief – yet without actual evidence – allegedly reasonable initiatives such as purging voter rolls and requiring ID seemed the natural solution.

    At least in hindsight, the center’s line of argument is easily deconstructed. First, arguing by anecdote is dangerous business. A new report by Lorraine Minnite of Barnard College looks at these anecdotes and shows them to be, for the most part, wholly spurious. Sure, one can find a rare case of someone voting in two jurisdictions, but nothing extensive or systematic has been unearthed or documented.

    But perhaps most importantly, the idea of massive polling-place fraud (through the use of inflated voter rolls) is inherently incredible. Suppose I want to swing the Missouri election for my preferred presidential candidate. I would have to figure out who the fake, dead or missing people on the registration rolls are, then pay a lot of other individuals to go to the polling place and claim to be that person, without any return guarantee – thanks to the secret ballot – that any of them will cast a vote for my preferred candidate.

    Those who do show up at the polls run the risk of being detected and charged with a felony. And for what – $10? Polling-place fraud, in short, makes no sense.

    The Justice Department devoted unprecedented resources to ferreting out fraud over five years and appears to have found not a single prosecutable case across the country. Of the many experts consulted, the only dissenter from that position was a representative of the now-evaporated American Center for Voting Rights.

    The arguments against vote fraud were built on a house of cards, a house that is collapsing as quickly as the U.S. attorney investigation moves forward.


  9. 11

    ivan spews:

    Rossi might be raising money but we have the boots on the ground.

    This state is poised to hand Obama a whopping victory. Voters are excited that Obama will be moving the country forward. Why then, we ask, would we tolerate Rossi, who would take the state in the opposite direction?

    When we put it that way, the voters get it. When Rossi tries to buy the election with special-interest money and the same right-wing shit that is tanking nationwide, voters here get it. They get that Gregoire will implement and advance Obama’s program, and Rossi would only obstruct and undermine it.

    We’re going to trounce him, Cynical and the rest of you rightards. We’ll be banging the doors while you run your pathetic TV ads, and you can just eat our dust.

  10. 12

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @9 Republicans respond to deficits by giving themselves even more tax breaks, like McSame wants to do.

  11. 13

    W. Klingon Skausen spews:

    re 2: “Folks can freely give to campaigns.”

    ‘Folks’? Don’t be fatuous, Cyn.

  12. 14

    mark spews:

    What are you stupid fucks going to do when
    all us producers throw in the towel and quit
    sending in the cash? And I would like to add
    an emphasis on stupid fucks. It’s coming.

  13. 18

    ArtFart spews:

    1 “Stand back”???? Are you kidding? They’re galloping to the trough and gobbling up every drop of the Mother’s Milk of Politics like the starving dogs they are.

  14. 21

    correctnotright spews:

    @19: Still no proven cases of voter fraud. Still no refutation of the facts I gave above – who would risk a felony crime to illegally vote – maybe a stupid republican but not any democrats.

    There is nothing on voter fraud and there is nothing on ACORN that has been found to be illegal. Thye are registering voters – are the republicans against voter registration? Why do less people in this country vote than in almost any other real democracy? what are the republicans afraid of – that Americans will actually vote in real numbers when they becoem disgusted with 8 years of Bush and the republican destruction of OUR country?

  15. 22

    Christina spews:

    The fact that Reichert and Rossi are doing so well in the polls (they should be getting hammered in a year as bad as this for Republicans) shows what weak candidates Burner and Gregoire are.

    When Reichert and Rossi win, the State Democratic Party needs to re-evaluate who they recruit and put on the ballot. There are so many better potential candidates than Burner — if she can’t win this year, she should just go back to her HOA and get more experience there.

    Gregoire is another story: Gregoire has just shown us 4 years of complete “deer in the headlights-like” lack of leadership on transportation and so many other issues. Her lack of disciplined leadership and scattered message machine has been a constant irritation to thinking Washingtonians. If you want change and real leadership that will solve problems, Gregoire has failed already. Rossi is the answer.

  16. 23

    YLB spews:

    22 – Thank you for your opinion “prefers GOP Party” shill for Dino Rossi – the BIAW’s tool.