NY13 Blog; Retaking NY-13 from Rep. Vito Fossella

Following the corruption, ineffectiveness and hypocrisy of Rep. Vito Fossella.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

3Q Fund Raising follow up

A commenter in the last post reminds me that Stephen Harrison's fund raising numbers are over only a two week period. His first fund raising asks went out on September 17.

Stephen Harrison is up on ActBlue, a great resource that allows you to donate directly to candidates. He has already raised nearly $2,000 unsolicited through this site.

Finally, with all the Harrison talk it is important to also note that this is the end of the third quarter for Vito Fossella as well. Fossella ended the second quarter with unprecedented debt of $117k. Now that is true Republican fiscal conservatism that Vito preaches. If he can't even manage his own campaign finances why would anyone trust him with a federal budget billions of dollars larger?

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Harrison's 3Q numbers

Today, Sunday September 30, 2007 is the last day of the third quarter for federal candidates. Stephen Harrison the only announced candidate is expected to announce nearly $45k in money raised and pledges (about $33k in actual funds). There is a final fund raiser for the quarter which should pull in a few thousand, which combined with $4.5k left over from the 2006 election should put him over $50k.

Stephen Harrison declared his candidacy on August 9, 2007 meaning he managed this fund raising in less than 2/3's of the quarter and a full 5 months ahead of his announcement in 2006. It will be telling how this effects future fund raising. To borrow the slogan from Emily's list, "early money is like yeast." Also it will be interesting to see what effects this might have on a Recchia candidacy.

On September 14, Tom Wrobleski wrote an article discussing the finances of a Recchia run;

Recchia, a Democrat, said he would have to raise about $2 million for the race and said he hoped to have a "significant" amount of money banked by Jan. 1.

Recchia said the amount raised between now and then would determine whether he runs.

"You can't run if you can't raise the money," Recchia told the Advance.

So I await Harrison's actual FEC filing and whether there is any movement from Recchia in response. All around this is great news for the district.

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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Northeast once again target for Democratic pickups

CQPolitics.com is running a story Democrats Seek to Pick Up More Northeast House Seats in ‘08. They state that the success of the Democratic Party in the Northeast helped propel the party to majority status in the House and that the party still feels there are seats rip for the picking to continue their dominence of representing the interest of the more liberal residents.

Not content with the major gains they made in the Northeast in the 2006 campaign, Democratic strategists believe they can make further inroads in the region in next year’s House contests.


Democratic strategists planning for 2008 contend, though, that they have not yet maxed out in the Northeast’s House contests.

Add to this the fact that the National Republican Congressional Committee, the organization that provides financial support to Republican incumbents and challengers is in serious trouble and practically broke, via CQPolitics GOP in Unusual Position: Behind in Money Chase;

Using data for Aug. 31 in the election cycle’s off-year as a snapshot, the figures show that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) reported $20.5 million more in cash on hand than the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), which reported only $1.59 million in the bank.

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Stephen Harrison (D) launches website update


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Fossella's friend Neil Volz gets probation

Vito Fossella is sleeping well these days after friend and donor Neil Volz was handed a 2 year probation sentence and $2,000 fine. Neil Volz if you don't recall plead guilty to corruption of public officials and has been turning on many individuals connected to the Jack Abramoff investigation. Because of that his sentence has been drastically reduced thanks to his close connections to so many larger fish, which is not really a positive for Volz.

You may also recall we broke the story that Fossella refused to donate the money he had taken from Neil Volz to the American Cancer Society, only coming through with 50% of the money.

Here is hoping Fossella can find that other check some where around his office and close this ugly chapter in his public service life.

see: Vito Fossella's infamous donors.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

House passes SCHIP bill, yet much work ahead for Fossella

Late last night the House passed the new SCHIP conference bill agreed to by both the House and Senate. The bill passed 265-159. Rep. Vito Fossella voted yes on the new bill, despite voting no on the House's earlier version of SCHIP expansion on August 1.

The bill is widely expected to pass the Senate with a 'veto-proof' majority, although fell short of the magic 289 votes needed in the House for this 'veto-proof' majority. This is important because President Bush has been adamant about vetoing this bill in favor of big insurance companies.

Democrats in the House have promised to continue to bring this bill to a vote should Bush veto it. Republicans are on notice that they will continually have to record a vote on the matter and are put in the position of having to support or condone their fellow party members and President should they continue to prevent passage of extending health care to millions of children.

via CQPolitics;

Democrats said they plan to bring the issue up repeatedly -— and to continue to enlist the help of moderate Republicans such as Sen. Charles E. Grassley to help their cause.

Fossella has taken a small step in the right direction but now needs to work on getting this past a veto.

“I wouldn’t want to be the guy that vetoes this bill. And I would not want to be the guy that supports the fellow who did veto the bill.” Rep. Dingell

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Call Fossella now, demand he support SCHIP

Today Vito Fossella has one last chance to vote to pass an extension to SCHIP, State Children's Health Insurance Program, before it is set to expire on September 30. So far Vito Fossella has voted against the SCHIP extension on August 1, failing to stop the bill from passing in the House. After passage then in the Senate a conference committee has agreed to legislation and sent it back to both chambers for final approval. The Senate passed the new bill with a veto-proof majority, but it is unknown whether the House will do the same to overcome a promised veto by the Bush administation who oppose using federal money to insure our children.

Republicans like Vito Fossella are needed to bridge this veto proof gap, since the bill will easily pass in the House again. The question is whether Fossella will vote against it allowing Bush to have final say with his veto.

For an outline of what the conference committee's new bill is, see The Gavel, Speaker Pelosi's site. For more information on counter talking points against SCHIP see Campaign for America's Future. Finally the real question here is does Fossella support Good Government or Bad Government?

Call the the House switchboard is (202) 224-3121 and urge Vito Fossella to stop talking and actually vote in favor of extending SCHIP.

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Constituents march to Vito Fossella's office to oppose war

Although the war was not enough to span previous margins of defeat for Democrats here in 2006, we might end up seeing it haunting Vito Fossella in 2008. Just to make sure it is an issue once again his own constituents have marched on his district office to demand that he take notice;

via the Brooklyn Daily Eagle;

On the same day that thousands of protesters gathered in Washington D.C to protest the war in Iraq (and, as it turned out, to be confronted by a group of citizens in support of the war), hundreds of protesters gathered here in Bay Ridge to march to the local office of Rep. Vito Fossella, R- NY 13, asking their representative to stop funding the war.

So where is the Democratic leadership on this, well marching among the protesters;

Fossella has continually backed the administration on the war in Iraq, in stark contrast to Steve Harrison, the only democrat so far to formally announce he is running against Fossella in the 2008 election. (See column at left.) Harrison, an attorney and former chair of Community Board 10, spoke at Saturday’s rally. Talking to the Eagle, Harrison says he is most concerned about the safety of our troops, who have been there long enough fighting a war “that nobody can figure out how to win or what the purpose is.”

Harrison contends, along with many other opponents of the administration, that the money for the war in Iraq should have been devoted to other security causes surrounding the war against terrorism.

Clearly Fossella's support of the war and President Bush is not a winning strategy and so we will see him hide from this issue at all costs. The question is whether a challenger can hold his feet to the fire and make him defend his support of both President Bush's failed strategy and Fossella's continual support of this non ending war.

Representatives from Fossella’s office did not return a call by press time.

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Monday, September 24, 2007

Staten Island Young Dems

via Tom's polit.bureau Young Dems in Charge;

Keith Parascandola has been re-elected to a second term as president of the Young Democrats.

Among the group's goals for the next year-plus, according to Parascandola: Electing Mike Ryan district attorney, unseating GOP Rep. Vito Fossella and putting a Democrat in the White House in 2008.

And then there's that constant battle to up the party's profile on the Republican-dominated South Shore.


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Welcome palaverist to the blog block

I stumbled across a new blogger in the district who seems very knowledgeable on political issues. Welcome The Palaverist;

There's a lot of attention already being paid to the 2008 presidential election, but let's not forget about Congress!

In 2006, I campaigned in New York's 13th Congressional District to support Steve Harrison's scrappy but unsuccessful bid to unseat Conservative Republican Vito Fossella.

Now that I actually live in the district, I'm even more anxious to see Fossella taken down. Steve Harrison has announced he'll run again, but the New York Times mentions three other potential candidates: City Council members Michael E. McMahon of Staten Island and Domenic M. Recchia Jr. of Brooklyn, and Assemblyman Michael Cusick of Staten Island.

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Saturday, September 22, 2007

One more chance for Fossella to finally support SCHIP

via CQPolitics;

House and Senate leaders have concluded negotiations on a children’s health insurance bill, clearing the way for its passage next week — and a threatened veto by President Bush.

Vito Fossella has already voted against SCHIP when it came to floor in the House on August 1, 2007. Despite that he has used press releases and media reponses to claim he supports expanding SCHIP, hiding the fact that he voted NO on the bill. Now he once again has a chance to stand up and support the bill, to stand up and tell the President not to veto it. Chances are this will not happen and Fossella will claim he supports it, watch the President veto the bill and do absolutely nothing about it, as he has for the past two months. Fortunately it appears there is plenty of Republican support in both the House and Senate to mitigate Fossella's opposition.

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Fox News calls out Boehner, where is Fossella?

Vito Fossella's boss (since he clearly does not answer to the people who he represents) Rep. Boehner (R-OH) decided to say that 3,000 American deaths in Iraq is a "small price to pay". This has caused massive amounts of outrage and push back from all over the political spectrum, news and elected leaders and now Fox News. From the Horses Mouth by TPM we get this video coverage;

Where is Vito's outrage? Where is Vito's fake attempts at supporting our troops and standing up and telling Boehner no troop's life is a small price for this country? Maybe the better question is simply Where is Vito?

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

Does Fossella think American deaths are a 'small price to pay'?

Vito Fossella is refusing to comment (typical) on his House Minority Leader's comments that our 3,000 troop deaths in Iraq being a "small price to pay." Rep. John Boehner made those remarks on an interview for CNN;

BLITZER: How much longer will U.S. taxpayers have to shell out $2 billion a week or $3 billion a week as some now are suggesting the cost is going to endure? The loss in blood, the Americans who are killed every month, how much longer do you think this commitment, this military commitment is going to require?

BOEHNER: I think General Petraeus outlined it pretty clearly. We’re making success. We need to firm up those successes. We need to continue our effort here because, Wolf, long term, the investment that we’re making today will be a small price if we’re able to stop al Qaeda here, if we’re able to stabilize the Middle East, it’s not only going to be a small price for the near future, but think about the future for our kids and their kids.

Does Fossella feel the deaths of our American troops are a small price to pay in the ongoing 'war on terror'? No one knows. Like many major issues Fossella makes no public comments, has not made it clear he intends to address the issue all while it may appear he is busy he certainly has time to address hot topics such as convincing people he supports SCHIP despite his voting record and planning new ski trips to Vail now that Neil Volz is slightly off the hook.

Even CNN's The Situation Room has taken note of Boehner’s remarks;

If you don't believe this is an issue Fossella needs to address consider how close the two are, from October 2006 during Fossella's last election, via CNN;

Boehner is in New York Tuesday to campaign for Rep. Vito Fossella, R-New York.

How many districts would the then House Majority Leader visit, surely he could only choose a select amount that he had connections to or that he owed some major favors, and Fossella was on that short list.

And finally, if you think this is a partisan issue just take a look at Sen. John McCain's (R-AZ) response, via Time;

"With all due respect, every American wounded or sacrificed is the greatest possible price to pay," and we should all be grateful, "particularly those of us who sit in relative safety while those young men and women are fighting."

So does Fossella agree with Rep. Boehner that American deaths a “small price to pay”?

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Alan Greenspan on Republican wasteful practices

via the Washington Post;

Greenspan accuses the Republicans who presided over the party's majority in the House until last year of being too eager to tolerate excessive federal spending in exchange for political opportunity.


The large, anticipated federal budget surpluses that were the basis for Bush's initial $1.35 trillion tax cut "were gone six to nine months after George W. Bush took office."

Powerful words from the top Republican economist for decades, revered by many in both parties. Surely the criticisms he levels at the gluttony of the Republicans like Fossella when they were in power resonates more, when Fossella himself praises the man for his knowledge and demeanor. Vito Fossella on Alan Greenspan;

He is among the most respected economic strategists of our time and has the vision and foresight to lead America into the 21st century. His voice is respected in all corners of the globe and his judicious approach to managing economic matters has eased worries on Wall Street and in international markets.

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Sunday, September 16, 2007

Harrison protests war outside of Fossella's office

via Right in Bay Ridge blog;

Nearly a hundred local residents descended upon Congressman Vito Fossella's Bay Ridge district office (8505 4th Ave.) on Saturday to protest the war in Iraq.


Speakers included a U.S. veteran who served in Iraq, a visiting teacher from that country, and local activist, lawyer and 2008 Democrat contender against Fossella, Steve Harrison.

Two years later and this is still a race about the Fossella's War in Iraq.

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Saturday, September 15, 2007

Blog roundup on Recchia

Josh over at Joshing Politics writes Harrison About To Get Some Competition For NY-13 and is excited about the prospect of a primary for this race.

Brooklyn Streets, Carroll Gardens brings us Recchia Rising and notes Recchia's work for express train service in the area and think that he could be good advocate for public transit in DC.


Recchia (almost) in

via Tom Wrobleski (welcome back);

Brooklyn City Councilman Domenic Recchia today said he would form a congressional fund-raising committee next month, but stopped short of formally announcing that he will challenge Rep. Vito Fossella (R-Staten Island/Brooklyn) in 2008.

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Friday, September 14, 2007

Fossella votes against helping needy

On September 6, 2007 Congress overwhelmingly (333-75) passed a bill renewing a program that provides housing assistance to Native Americans. Vito Fossella voted NO.

We await a statement from someone other than himself stating that in fact he supports housing assistance programs and that is why he voted against it, akin to his support for SCHIP despite his vote to not renew it.

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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Republican Congressman comes out against war

Rochester Turning brings up the update that yes indeed, Rep. Walsh (R-NY) has now come out in opposition to the war in Iraq after being a long time supporter. From the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle;

Rep. Jim Walsh, in a dramatic break with the White House, returned Monday from a trip to Iraq saying it's time to bring troops home and stop funding the war.


"Before I went, I was not prepared to say it's time to start bringing our troops home," Walsh said. "I am prepared to say that now. It's time."


But Walsh said he saw little evidence that much has changed in Iraq since he last visited four years ago. He said he hopes to meet with President Bush to convey his change of heart.

Apparently Vito legislating from the comfort of DC prevents him from having a realistic understanding of what our troops are involved in on the ground in Iraq. Maybe it is time to send Vito to Iraq.

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A somber September 11th, 2007. As New York remembers our friends and neighbors whom we lost, as our first responders deal with sickness and health ailments resulting from their fine work at the World Trade Center the thoughts run through my head of why today we have our armed forces in Iraq stuck in their civil war instead of in Afghanistan and Pakistan searching for the monster who bestowed this upon us.

Monday, September 10, 2007

NY Republican congressman supporting troop withdraw

The blog upstate, Rochester Turning is reporting that the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle will be breaking news that Rep. Walsh (R) has changed his mind after visiting Iraq and supports full troop withdraw and potentially will no longer support funding the war.

The relevance of this shift is that Rep. Walsh, should he come out in opposition to the war will join the ranks of many other Republicans who are showing that voters can be conservative in their ideology and oppose this war.

While Vito Fossella continues to support anything President Bush can think of, maybe its time for voters of this district to look around at other options and candidates.

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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Bay Ridge Courier praises Fossella for supporting bill he voted against

Helen Klein of the Bay Ridge Courier wrote a recent article "Sick of it all... - Fossella at odds with Dubya over health care" describing Vito Fossella's opposition to Bush's maneuvers on SCHIP to create immensely difficult hurdles to prevent state's from expanding the program. And my response;

Dear Helen,

In an article from September 6, 2007, Sick of it all... - Fossella at odds with Dubya over health care, you write at length about Rep. Vito Fossella's opposition to President Bush's recent changes via Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on SCHIP.

I appreciate your coverage of the topic, as SCHIP in my opinion is a crucial program and we can not be a great country if we allow our children to go without health insurance and thus simple preventative care and check ups. You state;

"President George W. Bush has opposed expansion of SCHIP – in which the federal government pays matching funds to the individual states to administer their own versions of the program —threatening to veto legislation that would enlarge its scope."

One item of note that I did not see in your article on Rep. Fossella, is that on August 1, 2007 he actually voted against this bill and the same expansion of SCHIP that President Bush is also trying to prevent. Over fourteen paragraphs you cover the various angles of this from Fossella's purported opposition to Bush's veto threat to Gov. Spitzer's opposition, but never do you mention Fossella's actual vote.

I worry that we have allowed Rep. Fossella's communication team to craft the discussion on this issue as one of him being the champion of SCHIP while taking on President Bush. Yet maybe one of the best ways to take on Bush would have been to actually vote for this and then stood up for it, instead of trying to obfuscate the fact that when it comes to his job, crafting and voting on policy he has opposed SCHIP expansion.

I hope you have a chance to follow up on this article and expand on his NO vote. There is also plenty to cover on how the "expansion of SCHIP has received bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and in the statehouses" that other members of Congress were actually involved in.


see also:
Fossella praises SCHIP after voting against it

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Friday, September 07, 2007

Fossella hurts district by having zero clout in DC

Vito Fossella has absolutely no clout in DC which is not a good thing for his constituents considering he is their Congressman. And it is not as if this is his first term, he has served for 10 years.

via the Brooklyn Paper;

President Bush will send disaster relief funds to victims of the Aug. 8 storm that unleashed a tornado on Bay Ridge — but the White House is only sending money to Queens, not Brooklyn.


“People are having difficulty recovering from the tornado because the process for making a decision has been too slow,” said Rep. Vito Fossella (R–Bay Ridge), who had urged the Federal Emergency Management Agency — and his fellow Republican at the head of the executive branch — to do the right thing by Bay Ridge.

It was one thing when Rep. Fossella was part of the majority and theoretically could get legislation passed and influence bills. He never was able to do that. Now he is in the minority in Congress and all signs say that will not change in the near future. Now with a Republican administration in the White House and a presidential appointed head of FEMA he can't even get aide for his district after the recent tornado damage.

You might want to ask yourself what Rep. Vito Fossella is really able to do for the district. Maybe if you wait ten more years they will let him play with the grown up members of Congress who actually accomplish things.

see also:
Vito's Clout in DC
What Exactly Does Vito Do?

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Thursday, September 06, 2007

Fossella v. Vittaliano: 1997 Special Election analysis

In some reading recently I came across an op-ed piece from the 1997 special election when Vito Fossella first won this Congressional seat. The piece was amazing in its foreshadowing the Congressional changes in 2006 and its analysis of where the Republican party was heading. Via FairVote.org;

No matter what happens this Tuesday, it may well be that Republicans in the northeast are due for more losses in upcoming federal elections until it becomes clear that one party has firm control of the U.S. House. Socially moderate Republicans like George Pataki, Rudy Giuliani, Bill Weld and Christie Whitman may continue to do well in state elections, but the changing nature of their party -- as represented by Republican congressional leaders from the south like Gingrich, Trent Lott, Dick Armey and Tom DeLay -- will probably keep them at home rather than in Washington.

National Republicans may be willing to exchange their remaining seats in the northeast for more seats in the bigger and faster-growing south and west. But that may further move the party to the right, which could have significant repercussions in "swing" areas in the midwest and Pacific Coast. Newt Gingrich's decision to put James Greenwood in the congressional leadership and the RNC's investment in New York this fall may indicate that they recognize what is at stake. It is now up to Staten Island voters to decide whether northeastern Republicans will go the way of the Dixiecrat and the dinosaur.

In 2006, the Republicans lost the Northeast in large numbers. They lost House seats in New Hampshire (2) and Connecticut (3) and now only control one House seat, Shays (R-CT), in all of Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Maine. Further they lost three seats in upstate New York and potentially will lose three more upstate. The Republican Party abandoned the Northeast long ago and its long term impact is slowly being realized. The voters are leaving the party they once knew and rediscovering Democrats.

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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

1,588 Days Later

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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Gov. Spitzer and Rep. Rangel unite to support SCHIP

.. Fossella doesn't do much.

via The Albany Project;

Governor Eliot Spitzer and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger joined together today in calling on President George Bush to reverse new rules instituted by his administration to deny thousands of children health care coverage.


Earlier this week, on August 27, the Governor appeared with Congressman Charles Rangel to announce his intention to take legal action against CMS. The new rules contradict the provisions of the federal SCHIP law and were imposed without notice or the required comment period as required by the federal Administrative Procedures Act.

Where is Vito Fossella? Maybe skiing again instead of doing anything useful to get SCHIP passed.

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Monday, September 03, 2007

Why the Advance's tshirt piece on Fossella is fluff

Last week we covered a story I called a 'fluff piece' by the SI Advance that had little if any news worthiness. The story talked about a website out there that is selling tshirts that it automatically creates by crawling the web for popular names. One of those names is Vito Fossella and so you can buy a shirt that says "I heart Vito Fossella." The Advance gave this angle an entire article.

I call this reckless abuse of journalism. News sources, short of something clearly biased and slanted, should be objective and should present its readers with, well news. At a time when we are involved in a downward spiraling war, at a time when even Fossella's own staff are discussing Medicaid and SCHIP the Advance should be covering stories of substance. At the very least one would think that objective reporting would cover more sides to this story. Instead they wrote nothing short of a favorable article for a large ad buyer of theirs. Since they failed to do any reporting, let me try.

There are sites out there that sell anti-Fossella merchandise. Sites like cafepress.com allow 'store fronts' to be created by real people who are not paid staff of the site to express anything and everything they want as opposed to shopzeus.com which automates its merchandise creation regardless of if there is demand or not. So while the Advance only bothered to cover the merchandise praising Fossella there exists this cafepress.com store 'Kick Fossella Out.'

Let's view this from another angle though, web traffic. Alexa.com is an industry leader in measuring web traffic and so I used them for some comparative metrics.

Cafepress.com is ranked 854 most popular website on the internet.
Shopzeus.com is ranked 1,234,061 most popular website on the internet.

Scroll down that last link and you get an ad for shopzeus.com that puts this all in perspective. The ad is a tshirt they will create for you based on the information they automatically generate from that site, their own web stats, that reads

"0.00003% say my site rocks!"

Anyone can find a site that says what they want, I never expected that would be the basis for a "news" story. And remember the buried gem of the Advance's "article", "So far, no orders have been placed for the shirts."

see also:
More on Advance's Fluff piece on Fossella
SI Advance almost covers a news story


AARP, Sen. Clinton and SCHIP

The AARP has released a statement thanking Rep. Dingell (who introduced the SCHIP bill Vito Fossella voted against) and Sen. Clinton "for working to ensure America’s children have access to affordable health care."

Not surprising Rep. Vito Fossella is not mentioned anywhere in that statement, in fact the AARP has gone so far as to criticize Fosssella and others;

We are disappointed by New York representatives who voted against strengthening health care for children and improving Medicare. As Congress leaves for vacation, some lawmakers chose to reject the opportunity to strengthen Medicare and provide health insurance for millions of eligible children who are without health coverage.

I mention all of this because had you not known, and if you are a reader of the SI Advance you may have been mislead after reading their recent article;
Clinton, Fossella unite in opposition to health benefit guidelines for poor, August 29. The article claims that Clinton and Fossella "unite" in some manner on this issue, which is true in only that they both are critical of new federal obstacles in place to prevent the implementation of SCHIP expansion. What the article fails to mention is that first the two are in no way working together despite being "united" and second, a point I have harped on for a bit now, Vito Fossella voted NO on the SCHIP bill. Sen. Clinton on the other hand supports the Senate version. How can the Advance claim they are united when they have exact opposite voting records on this? Both small details one might expect to be included in article had it been actual reporting as opposed to more free positive press for the Congressman.

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Saturday, September 01, 2007

LTE: Wal-Mart bad idea for the island

In a recent 'Letter to the Editor' (LTE) in the SI Advance the writer comments that the island needs better investments than even more discount stores, something they already have;

With two K-Marts, a Target, and a Kohl's, I believe we have plenty of discount department stores. A Wal-Mart is just not needed. If anything, we need to cross into New Jersey for upscale stores, not discount ones.


Wal-Mart sells cheap, imported goods and provides low-paying, mostly part-time employment. A renewable energy research and manufacturing center would provide high-paying, full-time employment. [SI Advance]

Vito Fossella has come out in support of Wal-Mart coming to the island, clearly he likes the idea of taking financial contributions from Wal-Mart. More discount stores that offer little employment opportunities to the district or long term investment, it is your choice.

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LTE: Bush and Fossella gravy train

In a recent 'Letter to the Editor' (LTE) in the SI Advance a writer comments on the economic state of Americans and our country after years of Bush and Republican policies;

Since Bush took office, 5.4 million Americans have slipped out of the middle class and into poverty; nearly 7 million Americans have lost their health insurance; median household income has gone down by nearly $1,300; 3 million manufacturing jobs have been lost; the real earnings of college graduates have gone down by about 5 percent; entry level wages for male and female high-school graduates have fallen by 3.3 and 4.9 percent respectively; 3 million American workers have lost their pensions. Home foreclosures are now the highest on record; the personal savings rate is lower than at any time since before the Great Depression; wages and salaries are at the lowest share of gross domestic product since 1929; and the top 3 million Americans (Bush and friends) earn nearly as much income as the bottom 150 million (the rest of us) combined. [SI Advance]

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