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Wednesday, September 22, 2004

BBQ Rally for Anne Wolfe for Congress
Posted by Jill | 9:32 AM
As posted yesterday, Anne Wolfe is running for the NJ 5th District Congressional seat against wingnut Scott Garrett. This traditionally Republican seat was held for 25 years by moderate Republican Marge Roukema until her retirement in 2002. Garrett is dangerous because he's a stealth wingnut -- he runs as a moderate, he votes about as hard-right as you can get, and he uses his franking privileges to send out what is essentially campaign literature full of complete misrepresentations of his views.

The New Jersey Democratic party, not surprisingly, has essentially ceded this race to Garrett, which is, in my view, a huge mistake. This highly gerrymandered district, which includes some of the most affluent sections of Bergen County, then going around the top of the state into Sussex County, is suffering the often invisible pain associated with Garrett and the rest of his party. From overdevelopment to air quality, from skyrocketing property taxes to high health care costs, just about all of these problems can be traced to the Bush Administration and its lackeys in Congress.

Anne Wolfe was named to the Dean Dozen, a select list of common-sense progressives that Howard Dean's organization, Democracy for America, is supporting. She represents the kind of nuts-and-bolts progressivism that made many of us support Howard Dean early on in the presidential race. Anne Wolfe has no financial support from the party, and no financial support from corporate interests. Like Howard Dean before her, her contributions come from ordinary people, with an average donation of $80.

I think it's insane for OUR party to cede ANY seat in Congress to someone as odious as Scott Garrett. So I'm supporting Anne Wolfe with my wallet and my words.

Not in the NJ Fifth, you say, so it's not your problem? Au contraire. With Web-based campaigns taking off, every seat is now our problem. I've sent money to Joe Hoeffel in Pennsylvania and to Jim Newberry in Missouri, because I think Arlen Specter needs to be retired, and Roy Blunt needs to be drummed out of office with as ignominious a defeat as possible. As Barack Obama said at OUR convention:

The pundits like to slice-and-dice our country into Red States and Blue States; Red States for Republicans, Blue States for Democrats...We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

I'm defending the United States of America by throwing support behind good, progressive candidates who, once elected, can start taking our country back from the Bush Family Business.

So now let's cut to the chase. The reason for this rant this morning is to spread the word about what promises to be a really fun event coming up on October 2nd, to benefit Anne Wolfe's candidacy.

Here are the particulars (from Democracy for America):

When: Saturday, October 2nd
2pm - 6pm
Rain or Shine

Where: Alpine Pavilion
Palisades Interstate Park
Alpine, NJ 07620
(Alpine Boat Basin)

What: Live entertainment
Food & soda

It is a BBQ/fundraiser, with a live band - Peter Karp and the Road Show and BBQ food. NJ Democratic candidate for Congress Anne Wolfe will be speaking. Children welcome. Informal. Minimum suggested donation $50 at door, 40$ if preregistered. All proceeds to go to the Anne Wolfe for Congress campaign.

The site of this event is rumored to be where the British invaded New Jersey on November 20, 1776. They landed on the shores of the Hudson River under the Palisades in Alpine and scaled the cliffs, to attack George Washington's army at Fort Lee. This was the event which caused Mr. Paine to write "These are the times that try men's souls." It was a dark time, but all was not lost. General Washington was able to rally his troops for a stunning victory in Trenton where the tide was turned. Over a century and a half later, the Great Depression was upon us. When NJ and NY were gripped by fear and uncertainty, FDR sent our boys "into the forest to get us out of the woods". The Pavilion in Alpine was built by the New Deal Agencies and still stands today. It is a beautiful stone and chestnut structure on the shore of the Hudson that helped see New Yorkers and New Jerseyans out of that dark time as well. It is a perfect setting for us to take back our government and restore the ideals and progress of the New Deal and the Democracy founded long ago when we determined our destinies free of the strangling grip of a different King George and later a ruthless dictator bent on ruling the world.

The Alpine Boat Basin is a scenic location on the banks of the Hudson River, easily accessible via the Palisades Parkway or Route 9W; early October is gorgeous in northern NJ, and Peter Karp's band, which plays roadhouse blues-tinged rock 'n' roll, with clever, quirky lyrics often reminiscent of a less-cynical Elvis Costello, is worth a trip all by itself.

If interested in attending, sign up here.

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