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1. Carole at Cleveland Real Estate News has what is now a ten-part series on real estate values and sales in Cuyahoga County.  Thank you for all this primary source work, Carole.

2. Akron Beacon Journal column says Democrats moved too fast re: Marc Dann and the GOP won? He must be reading too much Mark Naymik.

3. Think politics is a cross subject?  Feeling criss-crossed by campaign manuevers? Check out ePluribus Media’s latest effort to engage us.

4. Craig Newmark of Craig’s List gave the CWRU commencement speech, and blogged and tweeted while doing it.

5. ANNOUNCEMENT: Foreclosure Moratorium forum tomorrow evening, 6:30pm.  Read Bill Callahan for the details.

6. This blog has been labeled “very negative” by pro-Hillary Clinton, anti-Obama, vote for McCain if Clinton isn’t the nominee website.  And, I would like to add, that no one was labeled more negative than me. Thank you very much.

7. Senators Sherrod Brown and George Voinovich will be guest hosting morning radio shows.

8. Great ‘Roots News from Kyle and Ben as they interview Kevin Coughlin.

9. She Should Run campaign looking for a few (hundred) good women. Want to make sure the floodgates get kicked open wide for good? Think about it for yourself.

10. John McCain seems to have a real addiction to lobbyists.

11. Lisa Renee has an interesting thought piece on the concept of “culture of corruption.”

12. More welcome home Josh Mandel (who is endorsing John McCain and saying all the right things re: focusing on Ohio, as opposed to Iran; I am happy to hear that and hope it follows).

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 11:14 pm May 19th, 2008 in OH17, Ohio, Politics, Remains of the Day | 3 Comments 

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On the heels of what I’ve written here and particularly here comes this from the AP:

Obama strategist David Axelrod and former Clinton aide Patti Solis Doyle confirmed they had had informal conversations about how she might help the Illinois senator if he secures the presidential nomination as expected. The conversations were first reported on the Politico Web site.

“When the time comes, if we’re the nominee, we’re going to want to work with talented people across the party including those who worked for Senator Clinton,” Axelrod said. “Patti’s a good and talented person, and we all have a high regard for her.”

He added, “No specific offers have been proffered, and none has been accepted. This is not an official entreaty from one campaign to another.”

Solis Doyle hails from Chicago, Obama’s home turf, and met Axelrod 20 years ago while working in city government there. Her brother, Danny Solis, is a Chicago alderman.

Solis Dolyle sounds like a woman who knows that Clinton’s run is just another toward making it routine to have a minimum of one woman in every presidential primary, and not something for which we’ll have to wait a generation:

For her part, Solis Doyle said in an interview that her status has not changed.

“I’m for Hillary, I have been for 17 years. This thing isn’t over,” Solis Doyle said. “But I’m a Democrat and if Obama’s the nominee, I will do whatever I can to get him elected and make sure the party is unified.”

What a year.

More from Politico and, who knew they cared so much, Press TV Iran.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 10:43 pm May 19th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Campaigning, Democrats, Elections, Hillary Clinton, Politics, WH2008 | 7 Comments 

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You can watch the interview here and read the behind the scenes story here (written for Poynter Institute’s E-Media Tidbits by Professor Kim Pearson, a BlogHer contributing editor and member of their political team).

An excerpt from Kim’s article:

The process of generating the questions and conducting the interview reflect one vision of an emerging civic media — a term coined by folks at MIT for what has been variously called citizen journalism, public journalism, representative journalism, or participatory journalism. Propelled by thinkers such as Jay Rosen, Jan Schaffer, Leonard Witt and many others, the goal of civic media is to empower citizens with tools for democratic participation.

Kim then identifies four elements that she believes distinguish BlogHer’s approach and contribute to its success: how they developed questions, how they used professional journalists in conjunction with community members’ questions, the insistence that BlogHer speak directly to candidates and fitting the effort into an larger voter education strategy.

I hope we see more and more of this kind of interaction between our candidates and elected officials, especially given how closed the Bush administration has been.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 7:24 pm May 19th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Blogging, Media, Women | 4 Comments 

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Dee Clements and Chuck Browder of Third Rail are a hoot and flattered me by asking me to chat with them about politics, and I think we covered eighteen other topics (Clinton, McCain, Obama, Ted Strickland, Marc Dann, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, No Child Left Behind, charter schools and vouchers and several others I can’t remember). It was a blast – and I bet they never ask me to do it again.

Thanks guys.

You can listen here (it starts about 1/8th into the podcast). It aired May 7, 2008, the day after the North Carolina and Indiana primary.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 6:04 pm May 19th, 2008 in 'Roots News, Announcements, Elections, Media, Politics, WH2008 | Comments Off 

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Congratulations to Loveland, Ohio’s Lisa Dunster.  She’s been selected to participate in The White House Project’s Women Rule! Leadership Training Program:

About the Women Rule! Leadership Training Program

Women Rule! is a partnership between O, The Oprah Magazine and The White House Project and is sponsored by American Express. This three-day leadership training program is a contest designed for 80 women winners who demonstrate leadership potential and have a vision for what to do with it.

Capitalizing on the success of The White House Project’s Vote, Run, Lead training model, Women Rule! will propel women to break through the barriers to their leadership and develop fully their vision for change. Women Rule! will reach women who are ready to step forward and lead in business, in philanthropy, in politics, in the community and in the public square. As boundaries between these spheres of influence become ever more permeable and people shift fields, professions and vocations with greater ease, The White House Project will take its proven formula “Inspire, Equip and Inform” and apply it to every arena where women want to lead.

I can’t locate anything on the Internet about Lisa but congratulations to her and the other women.

It is programs like this one that make me confident that we will not have to wait another generation, as some voters feel, to have another viable female candidate.  Frankly, with all the efforts and angst generated by this year’s Democratic primary, if we don’t field a viable female candidate every single presidential cycle from her on out, we have no one to blame but ourselves.  And that includes giving time and money and energy and ideas starting yesterday.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 5:51 pm May 19th, 2008 in Gender, leadership, Women | Comments Off 

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When I read this story about Barack Obama in which he says to the Republican Party that they need to leave his wife out of the campaigning, I thought about all the times in the Ohio political blogs that we’ve been over the same territory, often about children but also about wives. From the article:

The GOP, should I be the nominee, I think can say whatever they want to say about me, my track record,” Obama said. “I’ve been in public life for 20 years. I expect them to pore through everything that I’ve said, every utterance, every statement. And to paint it in the most undesirable light possible. That’s what they do.”

“But I do want to say this to the GOP. If they think that they’re going to try to make Michelle an issue in this campaign, they should be careful. Because that I find unacceptable,” he said.

While I share Obama’s belief that the spouses of candidates should not be the target of an opponent’s campaign, I also know that given the current precedent in regard to that issue, on the local, state and national level, I find his warning kind of naive.

I do believe that spotlighting this line now gives Obama the chance to truly make it something to be observed. But it will also require his campaign to stay away from everything Cindy McCain.  And you know what – if the can, that would be a fabulous new precedent to set.

But the Obama campaign definitely got into it about Bill Clinton.  So, to now say the spouses are off limits?  It’s reasonable, I can empathize, I wish it were the case that the spouses were out of the picture.

But given the history of the relevance of spouses in presidential campaigns (something about which I learned for an entire day over this past weekend), the practice may be very hard to eradicated.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 12:52 pm May 19th, 2008 in Politics | 11 Comments 

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From ABC (local in Houston):

…Michelle Obama denied reports that she had personally ruled out considering Clinton as Obama’s vice presidential running mate.

Michelle Obama had a lot of praise for Clinton — as first lady.

“I think the world of Hillary Clinton. Particularly, as a woman, having watched her go through a lot of what I might be going through, and doing it with a level of grace, and raising a phenomenal daughter, which I have two girls,” Michelle Obama said. “And I know how hard just in the little bit of exposure I’ve had to this what she’s had to deal with, and what she’s accomplished.”

“So that being said, you know, there is no way that I would say absolutely no to one of the most successful and powerful and groundbreaking women on this planet. What I have said is that I think one of the things that the nominee has earned is the right to pick the vice president that they think will suit them… I think this should be Barack’s say, through and through.”

Obama said he would make his choice based on his own criteria. Part of that criteria, he said, would be someone with independence “who can say no to me” and “who will tell me when I’m wrong.”

Based on those criteria, Obama joked that his wife would be a good pick.

This information provides a correction to this post I’d written which asserts that Michelle Obama had said that Clinton would not be an acceptable choice for VP. I blog corrected.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 12:41 pm May 19th, 2008 in Politics | Comments Off 

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This weekend’s meeting of the California delegations to the Democratic National Convention provides more evidence that supports the value of Barack Obama acknowledging the agony of defeat for Clinton supporters, and not only the thrill of victory, if he is going to be a truly unique leader who leads and has supporters and followers who follow that lead.

From the Huffington Post:

…Sunday’s meeting made it clear that both the Clinton and Barack Obama campaigns are ready to turn their swords into plowshares behind the impending nomination of Obama for the greater cause of defeating John McCain.

The Clinton crew is in a rather mellow mood. There was little anger there. The watchword of the day was cooperation with the Obama forces. [Clinton delegate overseer and national finance co-chair for Clinton John] Emerson noted later that his campaign had placed some very capable people on the national party’s credentials committee (where they might push for the ultimate version of Hillary “victories” in Florida and Michigan), including himself and former Governor Gray Davis chief of staff Lynn Schenk, in the event that Hillary decided to continue the fight towards the convention. Which does not seem at all likely.

Meanwhile, the Obama forces did much the same thing, with former LA Congressman Mel Levine, a principal champion of Israel and skilled litigator, also on the credentials committee. But as [national finance co-chair for Obama Steve] Westly pointed out, the goal of the Obama forces is to be magnanimous in victory with the Clinton delegates.

Westly reportedly instructed Obama delegates to be nice to the Clinton delegates and to not engage them in arguments about the campaign.

Emerson reportedly told the collected Clinton delegates that the key goal is for Democrats to sweep California and win the White House. That while they continue to strongly back Hillary, there are two strong Democrats and each is worthy of being president of the United States. [emphasis added]

Ayup again.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 12:18 pm May 19th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Campaigning, Democrats, Elections, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Politics, Voting, WH2008 | 3 Comments 

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And someone, if not him directly, is listening to as well as giving excellent advice about how Barack Obama’s response to the most disappointed of primary voters will be the key to his fate in November.

This item in Politico details how, on May 6, an Obama senior advisor said that on May 20, they would declare victory. However, more recently, the campaign has massaged that assertion to mean something a little less than declaring victory.

From Politico:

Concerned about appearing presumptuous or antagonistic towards Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama will not declare victory in the Democratic nomination fight Tuesday in the event he wins enough pledged delegates to claim a majority.

Rather, he’ll tiptoe right up to the line, without explicitly asserting the race is over.

While it may sound like an exercise in hair-splitting, the conscious decision not to declare victory is a revealing measure of the sensitivity surrounding overtures that appear to disrespect Clinton and her supporters.

It’s also a reflection of the Obama campaign’s supreme confidence in the delegate math at this juncture—the campaign now appears secure enough in its commanding position that it no longer feels compelled to declare victory in an attempt to marginalize Clinton.

Why that’s predicted to be what will happen tomorrow:

At the heart of the bid to steer reporters from the he-will-declare-victory narrative [fueled by previous Obama campaign statements about the significance of May 20] is a recognition that Clinton, who trails by a historically small margin, claims millions of supporters who don’t want her unceremoniously pushed out of the race. And the Democratic party views its chances in November as dependent upon its ability to reunite these opposing camps.

“Right now, it is all about unifying the party,” said Peter Fenn, a Democratic strategist unaffiliated with either campaign. “This election should be won by the Democrats if the Democrats unite behind a candidate. The one hope that McCain has is if the party splits. For Obama, who has so far been very concerned about antagonizing Clinton’s supporters, you are walking a fine line.”

Not to mention the fact that the Clinton campaign refuses to recognize the Obama math, stoking an intra-campaign conflict at a time when both candidates are avoiding personal attacks.

Ayup. Very smart, leadership quality move. If it in fact does go down like this tomorrow and through June 3 (read the entire Politico article to learn more).

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 10:39 am May 19th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Campaigning, Democrats, Elections, Hillary Clinton, John McCain, Media, Politics, Voting, WH2008 | Comments Off 

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So says Doris Kearns Goodwin in this above-the-fold front page article in the New York Times today.

And I tend to agree – for a panoply of reasons.

I believed that Hillary Clinton’s running, and her being on the ticket, would be a help to down ticket women, not a hindrance or drag as some predicted. Yesterday, I linked to an Ohio newspaper’s article that listed a slew of women running in Ohio races. I’m on the steering committee of the White House Project’s Go Run! training that will take place in Columbus in less than three weeks and we’ll have 100 women ready and waiting to run and/or help other women run. And I’ve been thinking a lot about a high school friend of mine who swore, when she was 16 or 17, circa 1978-1980, that she would be the first woman president (she’s in Chicago now running a money-management firm she founded after attending Yale and Harvard).

Women can draft behind this historic effort, no matter how it ends. And we’ll learn. Women are fantastic learners and don’t like to make the same mistakes twice (because they don’t like to lose).

And, of course, we’ve raised the profile of just how ingrained sexism is in our society – from the simpliest sweetie to the cable news talking heads and everything in between.

Many people are being quoted as saying that it will be generations. I feel their disappointment but I see this as an opportunity. The focus has been on these two extraordinary individuals – extraordinary for a variety of reasons, positive and negative.

We have got to take advantage of that spotlight or it will be generations. And thank goodness, there are many women like myself who have no plans of giving up or waiting.

We have to write our own narrative – we can’t let others write it for us. And I am certain that a woman president is not a generation away.

FYI: The NYT article mentions the Clinton Supporters Count Too group:

Cynthia Ruccia, 55, a sales director for Mary Kay cosmetics in Columbus, Ohio, is organizing a group, Clinton Supporters Count Too, of mostly women in swing states who plan to campaign against Mr. Obama in November. “We, the most loyal constituency, are being told to sit down, shut up and get to the back of the bus,” she said.

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By Jill Miller Zimon at 8:19 am May 19th, 2008 in Barack Obama, Campaigning, Elections, Gender, Government, Ohio, Politics, Social Issues, Women | 5 Comments 

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