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Drive, Don't Vote the "Ripe" Right Wing Incumbents Out of Congress

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It's time to target the right wing incumbents who are ready to "fall off the vine" and retire-- to make them so miserable in their job, that they don't want to come back, that they'd rather sign up for a cush job in the private sector instead..

It's already begun. Denny Hastert is quitting. Deborah Pryce is quitting. Charles "Chip" Pickering is retiring. Virginia Senator John Warner, 80 years old, is considering retiring.

Do you think a pattern is developing here. It's a whole different way to make a living when you're a minority member of the congress. Lobbyists don't treat you the same, especially since the ethics rules have changed.

Think of all the Republicans who WERE committee chairs, who USED TO wield incredible power, who are now relegated to observer status, forced to accept the gavels of the Dems who they used to rule over. They have to watch as the Dems make policy.

Then they go home to a diminishing base. They look at the Dems reeling in a LOT more money. They are stuck supporting a war, giving lip service to supporting a war that it is hard for anyone to rationally get enthusiastically behind.

How many more right wingers do you think are teetering on the edge, thinking that now is the time to call an end to their career in congress. I wonder how many are already feeling that going another two years in the minority is not going to be fun, is even going to be worse, as the Dems pick up an even stronger majority.

Nancy Pelosi, Stenny Hoyer, Harry Reid, Rahm Emanuel, Chuck Schumer, are you listening? It seems that you have, probably dozens of incumbent right wingers who are not exactly enthusiastic about coming back to work in 2009, not looking forward to taking minority positions on committees, not enthusiastically expecting to cruise to victory in states or districts which they used to take for granted. They are going to have to fight tougher and hard, raise more money than they have in years.

You have a lot of potential retirees just waiting, already ripening to be knocked off the vine. You have dozens of potential candidates who might be persuaded that it's just not worth coming back, not worth going through the aggravation of running against fresh, well funded opponents supported by constituents who are angry at you for supporting George W. Bush, the worst president in US history.

These potential retirees will almost certainly be facing working in a congress with both houses controlled by Democrats, with a Democratic president. It's not going to be fun for the minority party legislators.

The time is ripe to do things to maximize the ripening process, to make those minority members WANT TO LEAVE, to bring them to the point where they conclude that it's not worth it, running again, that staying in office just won't be fun, won't be profitable, will even be miserable.

The Democratic leaders in the House and Senate are in the position to do that in the coming months. It won't be pretty, but it WILL be symmetrical-- meaning it will be comparable with the way the former majority leaders- the Republicans-- acted when they were in power. That will mean that when Democrats rule committees, they do so with an iron hand, especially with the targets of this "retirement campaign."

First step should be to identify the incumbents, besides Hastert, Pryce and Pickering, who have already announced, who fit the profile of likely to be inspired to retire-- older, weakening bases, falling funds, former committee chairs-- people who have tasted the sweetness of power and who have since, tasted the bitter pill of living in its shadow since the Dems took over in Jan 2007. Some of the "contract with a new America" people, who were swept into office with Newt Gingrich, back in the mid nineties may be ripe for falling off the incumbent "vine." Things are certainly a far cry from what they started out being accustomed to. Then there are the more senior members-- with decades of membership in the "club congressional."

Next, the Dems have to start turning up the heat on these "targets" for ripening off the vine. That means making sure that the targets become acutely aware of their minority status on committees, experiencing shart flashes of reality, in the form of minimized time, minimized input-- always respecting the rules, but not providing much if anything in the way of largesse.

These targets need to know early on that their states, for senators, and their districts, for house reps, are already being targeted more aggressively, extra early , with higher funding and more third party PACs and other organizations going after them.

The whole idea is to get these "targets" to start thinking, as early as possible, about retiring. It won't even hurt if pundits and bloggers start writing about the possibilities, doing articles specifically targeting individual candidates, discussing the hows and whys of their retirement, even exploring possible post-retirement jobs the incumbents will enjoy.

During this summer break, local activists might help the "ripening" process by holding vigils at the legislators offices, or near their homes. Now's not the time to be nice to these legislators. It's time to be clear that you don't want them to come back-- if you see them in public, time to speak up, not to be kind and friendly and polite.

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Rob Kall Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect, connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media. 

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He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity

He's given talks and workshops to Fortune 500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful people on his Bottom Up Radio Show, and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and opinion sites,

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Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind.  Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives  one person at a time was too slow, he founded which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big)  to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, debillionairizing the planet (more...)

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