Thursday, June 14, 2007

Who Ya Gonna Call - Pork Busters

Americans For Prosperity is holding a rally today to call on Dave Obey to fulfill Democrats' campaign promises to bring more transparency to the earmark process. Obey has proven that he will simply practice business as usual when it comes to running the appropriations committee.

Here's the press release:

In response to Congressman David Obey's attempt to hide pork-barrel earmarks from American taxpayers, I'm excited to announce that Americans for Prosperity's Wisconsin chapter will hold a grassroots rally tomorrow, June 14, outside of Congressman David Obey's home office in Wausau in support of pork-barrel transparency.

At the rally, grassroots taxpayers from Congressman Obey's district will call on him to release all of the pork-barrel earmark requests he has received from rank-and-file Members of Congress so they and other taxpayers around the country can help the Appropriations Committee Chairman evaluate their merits.

We'll also present Congressman Obey's staff with the names of hundreds of Americans who have volunteered to help him review more than 36,000 requests for pork-barrel spending. Just one day after AFP helped kick off an online petition drive, more than 700 Americans have signed up to help the overworked Chairman.

Our rally will also feature a giant pork-barrel pig, which our members plan to rename in Chairman Obey's honor.

If you're in the Wausau area tomorrow, be sure to join us at Noon on the sidewalk outside Congressman Obey's office at First Star Plaza , 401 5th Street , in Wausau .

And if you haven't already done so, be sure to sign our online petition at

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Obey Votes Against Dairy Funding

Dave Obey voted against the war funding, and in doing so, put the liberal left wing of the party ahead of dairy farmers in Wisconsin.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Obey's Excuses

Obey tries to explain eruption away.

We don't know about you, but if this was the first time he had exploded at someone, an explanation would be in order. He explodes at the drop of a hat and that's the problem. It's not a reflection of our values and it's time for him to go.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mount Obey Known for Bad Temper

According to colleagues, you haven't lived until Obey's ripped you a new one, Obey's always ill-temptered, and cranky all the time.

Great representation of our values. I need a paper bag for my head when I visit DC later this summer.

Mount Obey erupts on colleagues
By: Josephine Hearn and David Baumann May 9, 2007 06:22 PM EST

The great Mount Obey rumbled to life again Tuesday, producing one of the most spectacular eruptions yet for the Wisconsin volcano and triggering minor flare-ups in peaks as far away as California.

Experts said such breathtaking seismic activity is common for Mount Obey, better known on Capitol Hill as House Appropriations Chairman Dave Obey, one of the most volatile members of Congress.

Obey's most recent outburst came during a private meeting of House Democrats discussing the latest proposal for funding the war in Iraq through the summer.

Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich, an anti-war Democrat from Ohio, asked Obey whether the bill would lead to privatization of Iraqi oil reserves, according to lawmakers and aides present at the meeting. Exasperated by the question, Obey let forth a stream of caustic words, asserting that the bill would not privatize Iraqi oil and emphasizing that he had clarified the issue many times already with Kucinich.

Obey was unrepentant Wednesday.

"I told him to read the goddamn language," Obey said in an interview. "If someone's ears are too tender for that language, that's too bad. I did it on purpose."

He said that Kucinich, who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination, is purposely misleading people about the spending bill. "I'm sorry he's only at 1 percent in the polls," Obey said. "He simply does not like me and I don't like him. I make no apology [for] what I said to Kucinich. He had it coming."

Obey gave some insight into how he uses his temper when he elaborated on the incident. "It was purposeful," he said. "People don't listen to half the things that are said in caucus. I did it to get people's attention. And, by God, I got their attention."

Obey continued, "As far as whether I have a temper, frankly, Scarlett, I don't give a damn. I didn't come here to win a popularity contest."

Kucinich had no comment.

Obey's eruption galvanized Rep. Diane E. Watson (D-Calif.), who rose to say she was offended by the remarks.
"When a member asks a question, I think there should be a response, not a cussing out," she said in an interview. Watson said that she shared Kucinich's concerns that the bill might lead to oil privatization but that Obey "scolded" her.

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) was similarly taken aback. "He cursed at [Kucinich]. I think Mr. Obey was unfairly harsh and disrespectful."

Waters, Watson and Kucinich are among the handful of Democrats who opposed Obey's last wartime spending bill.

Other lawmakers at the meeting were more forgiving of Obey's temper, noting that such behavior is commonplace for him and not meant to be taken personally.

"You haven't lived until Dave Obey has torn your ass in half," Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) quipped to his colleagues.

Rep. Rahm Emanuel, an Illinois Democrat who is himself known for profanity-laced outbursts, tried to lighten the mood. "In my family, this is how we talk!" he said. (Indeed, Emanuel's mother is quoted as calling him a "shithead" in a new book, "The Thumpin': How Rahm Emanuel and the Democrats Learned to Be Ruthless and Ended the Republican Revolution.")

But Watson was not amused. She rejected arguments that Obey's comments were not meant to be harmful and were simply "the way he is."

"That's the way Imus is," she retorted, referring to radio shock jock Don Imus, who was recently fired after making racially insensitive remarks. "I do not accept what [Obey] said to me."

Mount Obey has long fascinated volcanologists who marvel at its high level of activity. Obey last blew his top two months ago, when he was confronted by an anti-war activist in a Capitol Hill hallway. The topic was again the wartime spending bill, which he has been ushering through the House. Obey himself would like to end the war, but he understands that his bill must take a more moderate approach to gain wider support, congressional aides said.

He unleashed a six-minute diatribe on the activist, railing against "idiot liberals" who did not understand his pragmatism. The exchange was caught on video and posted on YouTube, where it had been viewed more than 151,000 times as of Wednesday.

Obey attacks other lawmakers and congressional aides with regularity, often dubbing a misguided thought as "bullshit." In 1997, he mockingly waved a newspaper article in front of former Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas) on the House floor, saying it showed Republicans were selling out to lobbyists. DeLay shoved him and called him "chicken shit," according to accounts at the time.

Scott Lilly, who worked with Obey on the House Appropriations Committee for decades and himself got in a tussle with DeLay in 2001, said Obey's volatility is calculated.

"Many of the times he gets angry, it's not uncontrolled," Lilly said. "He gets people's attention when he gets angry, and he's aware of that. It's a more effective way of communicating with people."

First elected in Wisconsin in 1969, Obey is among the most senior members of the House and, as Appropriations chairman, he wields enormous power.

He is also perennially ill-tempered, said another former aide, who asked not to be identified.

"He's cranky all the time," the former aide said. "He's so used to being in a bad mood that if nothing is pissing him off, it makes him angry."

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-Mo.), co-chair of the House Civility Task Force, a group created to lower the level of vitriol among lawmakers, declined to condemn Obey's behavior.

"There have always been characters in Congress, people who are respected for who they are," he said. "He's not being mean; he's just being who he is."

Still, Cleaver said members of Congress should "make sure to give a very civil response." He lamented an overall lack of civility in Congress.

"This place is almost a volcano waiting to erupt,'' he said, "on any issue, at any moment."

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Obey Drops Pork Bribes and Inserts Union Payoff

Dave Obey revealed a new funding proposal for our troops in Iraq. It calls for shorter funding authorization and benchmarks without an automatic date to withdraw troops. But according to this Politico article, he has dropped the pork spending bribes and replaced it with a union payoff of a minimum wage vote.

If I were a member of congress who'd been promised a pork project for my district and was then told I was simply getting another minimum wage vote, I'm not so sure I would take that deal.

Oh well, the unions are Obey's (and most liberals) biggest benefactors, and they must be demanding this.

Should be interesting.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Playing Politics with Our Troops

This blatant political ploy by Speaker Pelosi should be condemned by Dave Obey today. Haven't heard, well, instead of sending the overdue troop funding bill to the President after it passed last week, Nancy Pelosi said she needed to read it line by line AFTER she voted for it.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Obey's FEC

2% of Dave Obey's First Quarter Fundraising Comes from Wisconsin.

Wow, that's an impressive show of grassroots constituent support!!!

98% of Dave Obey's nearly $272,000 in campaign contributions came from special interest PACs in Washington, DC as well as 39 other states. 69% of contributions were from special interest PACs and 29% from out of state sources.

Yet, no mention of the breakdown of this funding from our newspapers. How sad on both counts.

Obey's Friend and More

Well, the woman Dave Obey shouted down and offered a parting expletive to, was arrested for protesting outside Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office while chanting anti-war sentiments.

Also, over the break, Obey claimed he was making multiple stops across the district. We found evidence of one.

We are also breaking down Obey's first quarter FEC report. To read a first look from the Wasusau Daily Herald, click here.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

More Taxes

Today, Dave Obey voted for the largest tax increase in U.S. History, $400 billion over 5 years. Broken down, here's how it would impact America.

26 million small business owners, by an average of $3,960.
48 million married couples, by an average of $2,899.
42 million families with children, by an average of $2,181.
12 million single women with children, by an average of $1,082.
17 million senior citizens, by an average of $2,270.

Good thing we put these guys in charge. Hopefully President Bush will veto the Democrats' plans.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The following are excerpts from an editorial Wausau Daily Herald. Read it and then our comments.

An hour with Rep. Dave Obey is an hour in a graduate-level political science seminar . . .

. . . you'll come to appreciate the mastery of context and details that distinguishes the nation's ablest public servants from the rest of the pack.

We wish more professional politicians spoke their minds that way. Obey's candor . . . is refreshing.

We suspect that the episode also reflects the lingering frustration of Obey and other experienced legislators from both parties who grew impatient over the past decade of congressional affairs managed by ideologically driven newcomers. Obey is a policy professional, more interested in getting things done than scoring political points.

And he is a pragmatist.

We at the newspaper are fortunate, and we know it. Our jobs enable us to spend quality time not just with Dave Obey but with our U.S. senators, the governor and lieutenant governor, members of the state Legislature and other public officials. It's a wonderful perch.

We emerge from the sessions with Obey - those 500-level poli sci seminars - knowing that we're lucky to be paid observers of one of the great congressional careers in the nation's history, distinguished not just by length of service but by deep intelligence, wisdom and passion - precisely the qualities the United States needs to lead us out of Iraq while protecting the lives of our soldiers.

We've often contended Obey has the press in his hip pocket, and this proves it - we even left out much of the kissing up the Daily Herald did to Obey in this editorial.

This You Tube incident isn't one isolated incident of Obey's temper and character, it's a perfect example of it. People all over Washington and the Seventh District have been berated by Obey for disagreeing with him for nearly four decades. Obey got away with it for years because he so carefully controlled his contacts with the media (do you think for one second Obey would have gone off and even cursed at these people had it been in a meeting with writers for the Daily Herald?) and because there wasn't a vehicle like You Tube.

It isn't "refreshing" as the Herald characterizes it, it's disheartening to think this man is our Representative in Washington because he certainly doesn't represent the character of the people of Wisconsin.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Obey Earmarking

Anyone else remember when Obey was decrying Republican use of special interest earmarks to buy votes and pay off lobbyists.

Guess what Dave Obey did in trying to get his Supplemental Appropriations bill passed - not tough to guess, he used earmarks.

Even $25 million for spinach farmers. What do spinach farmers and funding the ongoing War in Iraq have to do with each other? Answer: absolutely nothing unless you're either trying to buy votes or repay a lobbyist.

So which is it Dave, vote buying or special interest payoff (actually it's probably a combination of vote, the person(s) whose vote was bought is probably paying off a special interest lobby)?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Mean, Yes, and Not too Bright Either

Good thing these guys are in charge.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Dave Obey is Mean

Watch this video, particularly the last 3 minutes.

If this is how Dave Obey talks to his anti-war, anti-troop friends, imagine how he speaks to people he doesn't agree with when he doesn't think people are watching. And it's not like the people he's talking with are even raising their voices. They are standing there calmly and respectfully. Too bad Obey doesn't return their courtesy, but as we've said here many times, Obey feels he is better than everyone else.

[UPDATE] Hat tip to Red State, with :38 to go, Obey drops the F-bomb, "go f*** with somebody else."

He should apologize for denegrating the office. Again, these people were not yelling at him. They were not using profanity. Obey raised the volume on the conversation. He's a hothead and should be ashamed of himself.

Obey to the World - the U.S. Folds

We like watching the World Series of Poker on TV. Dave Obey's favorite part apparently is when the player with the best hand says, "I fold."

According to the JS online Obey said the measure features a timeline "for bringing the United States' participation in Iraq's civil war to an orderly and responsible close."

We knew it before, but now it's official, Obey says the U.S. should give up. Obey has been opposed to being Iraq since the beginning and always wanted our troops to fail-voting against funding for our troops and constantly undermining them in the media which emboldens the terrorists.

It's just too bad he never wanted us to succeed.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Obey's Priority - Class Warfare

According to this story, Dave Obey wants to make this about "us versus them."

" . . . Congress is moving in a new direction and is being run by people with a different set of priorities - putting the needs of average working people ahead of the economic and political elites . . ."

Seriously, does Dave Obey really expect us to believe that Republicans sit around in a room and say, "how can we screw people who make less than $50,000 a year?" Let's remember, that Republicans passed the tax relief that reduced to zero the amount of federal income taxes a family of four who makes $45,000 a year pays.

The economic and political elites of the world who live in Washington and New York and Los Angeles support the Democrats, not the Republicans. And Dave Obey should know, because it's the liberal, rich, elite from the East Coast that do the most to fund his campaigns.