Wednesday, July 27, 2005


Which way will she go?

Yesterday, Sue Kelly told the Mid-Hudson News in this article that she was undecided on CAFTA, legislation that seeks to reduce trade barriers between the U.S. and several countries in Central America. Said Sue: "I'm still getting facts together trying to decide if its a good thing or a bad thing for the 19th Congressional District."

Of course, Sue's indecision was before Republican heavy-hitters like the President and Sue's buddy Tom DeLay began trying to convince fence-sitters like Sue to support the bill, according to this Reuters story. DeLay, who has been a regular contributor to Sue's war chest, was quoted as saying, "It will be a tough vote but we'll pass CAFTA tonight." But to do that, Sue and other so-called moderate Republicans are going to have to swing his way since several Republicans from North Carolina have already said they plan to vote no.

UPDATE 7/28 By a vote of 217 to 215, CAFTA passed late last night. It will be interesting to see now how Sue tries to spin this into being beneficial to people in the 19th, instead of what it appears to be: just another cave-in.

Monday, July 18, 2005


Stretching the truth...

While we realize that press releases aren't exactly unbiased information, this one that Sue put out on Friday certainly goes above and beyond. In it, she single-handedly takes credit for expanding the role of Small Business Development Centers. Even if we choose to ignore the fact that there doesn't appear to be any SBDC offices in the 19th CD, it's hard to overlook the fact that Congressional committees, no matter how hard they wish, are unable to pass laws. All they can do is vote to send something on to the full House. So whether Sue's efforts amount to anything more than a lot of hot air remains to be seen.

Thursday, July 14, 2005


No time for you...

An article in this week's North County News about Peekskill resident Darren Rigger's plans to run for Sue's seat has a telling little comment about Sue. According to the article, Sue's spokesman said the Congresswoman was way to busy this week to take the time to talk to the paper, which comes across as more than a bit arrogant, particularly since Sue seems to have found the time to talk to this Connecticut TV station as well as this Wisconsin newspaper. Sue's spokesman did manage to provide the local reporter with a couple of canned paragraphs of Sue's bio -- printed verbatim from her web site.

Here's a brief lesson for Sue and her spokesman: the people who read the North County News actually live in the 19th. The people who watch local TV news in Connecticut or read some Wisconsin newspaper do not.

So send an email to the North County News letting them know that canned responses don't cut it here in the 19th. If Sue can find the time to talk to folks in Connecticut and Wisconsin, surely she can find the time for the people in her own district.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


Placing a bet...

Normally, we at Take19 aren't all that big on placing bets. But here's one we just can't pass up. As the storm swirls around Karl Rove, Pres. Bush's top advisor, Sue, along with most other Republican House members are strangely silent. Meanwhile, Maurice Hinchey, whose district is adjacent to the 19th, was one of 17 House members to sign a letter being circulated by Michigan Congressman John Conyers calling for Rove to step down after outing a CIA agent according to this story.

Perhaps Sue's silence is due to the fact that she's on vacation. But since we're talking about placing a bet, we think it's more likely that she sees the whole issue as a lose-lose situation: if she speaks up against Rove, she becomes a Republican maverick and that's not exactly something Sue seems comfortable doing. Indeed, Sue seems much more equipped to sweep controversial issues under the rug in the hopes that the people of the 19th aren't paying attention. But this time around, we'll be paying attention to what Sue has to say -- and when she chooses to remain silent.

Monday, July 04, 2005


Sue = Vulnerable?

The Times Herald-Record is sensing blood in the water when it comes to Kelly, according to this brief article, which notes Sue's growing vulnerability:

"With a year and a half before Kelly will face re-election, potential opponents seem to coming out of the woodwork. Some politicos suggest the Hudson Valley's changing demographics and displeasure with recent events in Washington have Kelly looking a bit more vulnerable.
Democrats said to be interested include attorney Judy Aydelott, educator Ben Shuldiner and political consultant Darren Rigger, who, until recently, was a fundraiser for Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-Manhattan."

The above omits Richard Shea, Philipstown Town Councilman, as a person with a strong interest in the race. And we have heard there may be one or two more - this is a good sign! Stay tuned....

Friday, July 01, 2005


Sue's sweet spot for penny stocks...

In the movie Boiler Room, fictional young stockbrokers try to hook gullible investors into buying worthless stocks in companies they've never heard of. Meanwhile, in Congress, Sue is leading the charge to give many of these non-fictional microcap companies easier access to capital markets. Sue sponsored this legislation that tries to loosen up some of the rules put in place under the 65 year-old Investment Company Act. Sue's bill, which passed two months ago, was sent to the Senate.

First, a disclaimer: there are many good microcap companies out there that make perfectly legitimate investments. But given their limited trading volume and how easy it is for 1 or 2 investors to manipulate the price, they're not exactly a stable investment, say something you'd want to bet your Social Security dollars on.

But those concerns don't appear to figure into Sue's calculations. Yesterday, the main PAC/lobbying group for microcap stocks mentioned its special relationship with Sue in this press release, noting that Sue has spoken at their annual leadership conferences along with ├╝ber-Conservatives (and former Congressmen) Jack Kemp and J.C.Watts.

Is this really the type of company that constituents in the 19th want Sue to be keeping?

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