Saturday, August 04, 2007

Joe NOllenberg launches campaign against Joe Knollenberg

Joe NOllenberg launched his campaign today in White Lake, but Joe Knollenberg never showed up.  Here's some video from the event.

The host of the party, who's aligned with Democrats on the issues, brought us some ice cream.

Oakland Press: Joe, Meet With Us

On Satuday, August 4, the guest column below, asking Congressman Joe Knollenberg to face his constituents about the war in Iraq appeared in the Oakland Press.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Joe votes against resting our troops

Every day Joe Knollenberg casts more votes that show how out of step he is with his constituents. Yesterday Joe voted against a bill that gives our soldiers serving in Iraq a one-to-one ratio between time served in Iraq and time spent at home before being redeployed.

How can Joe claim to support our troops, then vote against this common sense bill to give our troops a rest from their grueling tasks in Iraq. Way to go, Joe. Here's a link to a roll call of votes on this bill. Click here.

Joe Knollenberg won't even support children's health care

Yesterday, Congressman Knollenberg voted against a bill, H.R. 3162, commonly known as the State Children's Health Insurance Program, (SCHIP), that provides health care coverage to America's children, the least protected class of citizens in America. Seems like another example of Joe Knollenberg being pro-birth, but not pro-life. How shameful to try to withhold funding for the children of America through this valuable program.

Fortunately, the bill passed the House of Representatives, despite Congressman Joe Knollenberg's No vote. Heres is the link to the bill information. Click here.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Giving Free Ice Cream to Joe and his neighbors

We went to Joe Knollenberg's neighborhood delivering free ice cream and to invite Joe to our Town Hall meeting on August 28 in Pontiac at Central High School at 7 p.m. Joe's wife, Sandie, was home but she wouldn't even open the door. Oh, well, we had lots of ice cream for everyone else.

Knollenberg hits new Low

Congressman Joe Knollenberg must really be getting desperate.

Now he is taking credit for legislation that he had little to do with.

His blog today notes: " I am very pleased to announce that the House of Representatives passed the America Competes Act, with my strong support."

What was his "strong support"? He voted for it. Yes. He voted for it. That's it. That is all there is to see at Joe's disasterous reign. Move on.

He is trying to take credit for legislation that he not only didn't sponsor, but he didn't even co-sponsor!

Then again, learning that Knollenberg considers doing nothing other than voting on a piece of legislation constitutes "strong support", we can now understand why he has such an abysmal record and poor reputation in Congress.

According to the conservative website govtrack, in 15 years, he has only proposed 72 pieces of legislation -- 60 of which never got out of committee!!! And of those that actually made it out of committee, only 6 were passed.

Now, I'm not advocating legislation for the sake of legislation. But certainly there are more than 6 problems in this country that have needed to be addressed over the past 15 years.

We Can't Afford Joe Knollenberg Anymore.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The New "Ask Joe" Feature

Joe Knollenberg's "official" Congressional website reads like notes from a cheerleaders team meeting.

Yea. Yippee. Hurrah.

But wait, it gets worse. Now they have started as "Ask Joe" feature.

Here are some sample questions for Joe:
  • Is it good to read?
  • Is it usually hot or cold in your Congressional District during the month of July?
  • Do dogs have ears?

I'd submit these, but the real questions are just as funny.

If the Founders were around today they would most certainly impose a minimum IQ requirement on Congressional Candidates.

What Do Joe Knollenberg & Alaska Senator Ted Stevens Have in Common?

What Do Joe Knollenberg & Alaska Senator Ted Stevens Have in Common?

They are are both champions at earmarking.

Earmarking is when a member of Congress sneaks a little line item into a bill -- usually appropriation bills -- and Knollenberg is a member of the Appropriations Committee -- specifying taxpayer dollars to be directed to some pet project.

These are not small items either. Knollenberg has been bragging on his website for weeks now about the "earmarks" he has slid into appropriation bills -- and they total over $60 million for Knollenberg alone. And those are only the earmarks he wants to make public!!!

He has inserted dozens, maybe even hundreds of earmarks into appropriations bills. Some of them may even be valuable uses of tax dollars.

But they are not all so good or altruistic.

In fact, Knollenberg chaired the committee that came up with the record breaking, pork filled Transportation Bill that topped $286 billion and included the Ted Stevens infamous "Bridge to Nowhere".

And Knollenberg has refused to respond to requests to release a list of his earmarks. [CNN did a survey recently and Knollenberg wouldn't even answer them.

Knollenberg Slides In an $8 Million Earmark For His Largest Campaign Contributor

Knollenberg inserted an $8 million earmark into an appropriations bill that would have gone into the pocket of one of his largest campaign donor's company.

Specifically, Knollenberg had inserted language requiring Amtrak buy $8 million in refrigerated railcars from Tony Soave's company. Soave is one of Knollenberg's biggest campaign donors.

Knollenberg & "The Cunningham Effect"
In a previous post, we reported on how Joe Knollenberg and Randy "Duke" Cunningham, a former Congressman now serving prison time for accepting bribes, worked together to do a favor for Washington D.C. lobbyist Mark Valente.

Although they had to work against their own party and their own President (Bush), with Joe Knollenberg and Randy Cunningham on the committee, the lobbyists prevailed.

According to a December 6, 2001, article in the Washington Post, it was Joe Knollenberg, the new chairman of the committee who bowed to the lobbyists and granted their wishes.

The story of how the lawyers' advocates succeeded illustrates anew the influence wielded by individual members of Congress -- and unelected players -- who take a personal interest in District legislation.

In this case, key roles were played by lobbyist Mark Valente III, who enjoys close ties to House GOP leaders, and Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-Mich.), the new chairman of the House panel that oversees the District budget.

Valente was lobbying on behalf of the Alexandria law firm of Dalton, Dalton & Houston, which often represents parents seeking special education services for their children. Knollenberg has long been sympathetic on the issue of lifting the cap -- his top aide has an autistic son and won a large judgment against a suburban Detroit school district after a debilitating legal fight.

The real kicker in the Washington Post story is the part where Joe Knollenberg is praised by Randy Cunningham as being the one responsible for basically giving the lobbyists what they wanted!

"The new chairman [Joe Knollenberg] made the difference," said Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Calif.), who fought the change and who is the longest-serving member of the House Appropriations subcommittee on the District.

Yes. That is the same Duke Cunningham that is serving prison time now for accepting millions of dollars in bribes from defense contractors.

In fact, an article in the National Journal coined the phrase "The Cunningham Effect" and that article specifically references Knollenberg's $8 million earmark to one his largest campaign contributors. (Note that Soave is still one of Knollenberg's biggest contributors -- in fact, he is the 9th biggest donor -- behind companies like GM, Ford, DaimlerChrysler, etc.)

Conservatives Are Fed Up With Republican's Who Are Not Fiscally Responsible

Some of the harshest critics of earmarking comes from the classic conservatives in the Republican Party. They are fed up with pork barrel spending. A quick perusal of the traditional Conservative journals shows that even they consider Knollenberg's spending habits to be outrageous. [Taxpayers For Common Sense, Robert Novak, etc.]

We Cannot Afford 2 More Years of Joe Knollenberg.

Monday, July 30, 2007

More Questionable Ties Between Knollenberg & Lobbyists

We've provided extensive documentation on how Joe Knollenberg is frighteningly close to questionable lobbyists. For example:

1. Knollenberg is paying Trent Wisecup, a sleazy lobbyist, $ 240,000/yr in TAXPAYER money to work on his campaign.

2. Knollenberg accepted thousands of dollars from convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff

3. Knollenberg accepted thousands of dollars from Bob Ney -- his friend from Congress who has been convicted of accepting bribes from Jack Abramoff

4. Knollenberg accepted thousands of dollars from former Congressman Duke Cunningham -- who is now serving prison time for accepting millions of dollars in bribes

5. Knollenberg accepted thousands of dollars from convicted felon Brent Wilkes -- the lobbyist who also bribed Duke Cunningham

6. Knollenberg is well known for doing favors for lobbyists in exchange for campaign contributions (e.g., the $8 million earmark he gave to Tony Soave -- his biggest campaign donor) and the favor(s) he did for lobbyist Mark Valente

Well, in another example of bad judgment and of just how close Knollenberg is to lobbyists, one of the biggest fundraisers for Knollenberg's campaign fund this year was held by one of the biggest lobbying firms in Washington D.C. -- Van Scoyoc & Associates.

This firm lobbies for foreign countries like Egypt and is known for lobbying for arms sales!!

Just this weekend we heard news reports that President Bush wants to send billions of dollars in advanced weaponry to countries like Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

Looks like Van Scoyoc & Associates have already bought Knollenberg's vote.

Taking a look at Knollenberg's website you can see the millions of dollars of earmarks that he brags about giving. But he refuses to release the full list of his earmarks to CNN. Obviously he is trying to hide some of the earmarks he has slipped into legislation to give federal money to his friends and campaign donors.

Of course, by not making this information public himself, Knollenberg seems to be underestimating not only our investigative skill, but those of the FBI as well. Frankly, we just think much of this information about his ties to lobbyists and felons will be more useful to voters as we get closer to the 2008 election.

We Cannot Afford 2 More Years of Joe Knollenberg & Corruption

Iraq Town Hall August 28 7 p.m. Pontiac Central High



Our town hall will include an invitation to Congressman Joe Knollenberg who will be invited to explain his position on the war in Iraq. Our speaker lineup will be firming up in the days to come.

Local politicians will be on stage, including the first candidate for the 9th Congressional seat against Joe Knollenberg.

We need a HUGE turnout for this event. Our venue seats 2000 people.

Where: Pontiac Central High School, 300 W. Huron, Pontiac, MI

When: August 28, 2007 7 p.m.