The communications between Central New York’s member of Congress and his constituents are predictable: press releases and public statements that say nothing, that hedge, that duck the hard issues and don’t provide any real answers.
After the #TrumpTapes, Rep. John Katko (NY-24) should make a bold, clear, and independent statement in support of our democracy and rule of law. Since he has yet to do this in 6 years in Washington, DC, I finally just wrote the damn press release for him:
I am deeply concerned by the recent Washington Post revelation of a phone conversation between President Trump and…
This post was originally written as a fundraising E-mail in my role as Executive Director of Taking the Hill, a federal political action committee supporting veterans and military family members of integrity for Congress in tough races. I’m adapting and sharing it here, because it’s my last message of the year and it got surprisingly personal. I hope it can help even one veteran or family member run a more successful campaign.
It has been a tough year for all of us. But back in March, I had to deal with a unique kind of challenge: how to tell my…
The price we paid for Rutherford B. Hayes was too damn high.
Twelve years after the Civil War, a disputed presidential election led to the Compromise of 1877 and ushered in the terrible reality of Jim Crow. Today, as Americans across the country take to the streets to protest yet another round of brutality against blacks by the state, reflecting on this history can be both informative and illuminate a path forward.
After the Civil War, the United States entered a period known as Reconstruction. This was when former Confederate states were brought back into the Union and rights were…
What SECNAV Should Have Said to USS Theodore Roosevelt Sailors
As a former Pentagon speechwriter, I thought I’d take a stab at the speech — and the outcome — Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly should have delivered to Sailors aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt.
Good morning. It is a distinct honor to be here on this ship with so many courageous Sailors. I should have done this a long time ago.
I am here to share a few words with you because, together, we are going through some difficult times.
We are in the midst of a global…
Our campaign began nearly a year ago with a simple premise: we must engage those left behind.
And that’s exactly what we’ve done. We’ve registered new voters and re-energized others. We’ve made this a campaign that deliberately includes rural, black, brown, native, and older Americans. We have established a bold, progressive platform for Central New York.
I am extremely proud of the team that made this happen — from staff and volunteers to friends and family, in all four counties of NY-24.
Last month, in Red Creek, I said that this campaign is about doing the right thing. …
When we launched our campaign on April 4, 2019, we started from scratch.
We didn’t have access to family money or political connections. I hadn’t run for office before.
We were about as grassroots as campaigns get.
That is why I am so proud of the historic campaign we’ve built so far.
Growing up in Wayne County, it’s hard not to be affected by our nation’s broken healthcare system.
I didn’t see a doctor until I turned 18; I saw a physician’s assistant. I remember this because I’d always call him “Doctor,” and he’d always correct me: “I’m not a doctor, I’m a physician’s assistant.” I didn’t know this was unusual and a symptom of a broken system.
Reproductive and mental healthcare were also difficult to access. Too many people in my family and those I grew up with chose to forego these types of crucial, lifesaving care not only because of…
I grew up in Red Creek, just a stone’s throw from Lake Ontario. As a kid, Oswego, Fair Haven, and Sodus Point were where our families went and, when they weren’t looking, where we snuck off to be with our friends. Whether it was Rudy’s, the Bluffs, or the Point, we spent part of our childhoods here.
And it’s why the second hundred-year flood along the lakeshore in three years is personal for me as a candidate for Congress.
On May 3rd, I visited Fair Haven to help unload sandbags for residents-in-need before the most recent round of flooding started.
With the 2019 primary election behind us, November seems far off in the distance. And while there are still a few races too close to call, there is work we can do today to build a better future for our region — because November is a lot closer than it appears.
I am proud of the candidates who had the courage to step up and run for office this year. Primary elections allow us an opportunity to expand our base, engage more Democratic voters, and strengthen our position for the general election. …
“People are trapped in history and history is trapped in them.”
When I was at the Naval Academy, I remember walking into my first freshman (“plebe”) English class and being shocked to see a grizzled, muscle-necked Navy SEAL in dress white uniform sitting in the middle of the room. The chair-desks were arranged in a circle around him, where I took a seat next to classmates who looked equally as terrified.
The SEAL sat silent for what seemed like five or ten minutes, just looking at each of us, intensely. Finally, he spoke:
“I am Lieutenant Smith*. I am your…