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June 19, 2008

Maybe Chris Dodd needed that Countrywide loan to pay for his new residence...In Iowa?

Let's face it. Chris Dodd is pretty much a non-entity in politics. I mean, come on, who gives two craps & a stroke about Chris Dodd, except for Mrs. Dodd his kids and possibly a few siblings and close cousins? I mean, yeah, he's a Senator and all that, but he's from Connecticut. Excuse me? Connecticut? Is that even a state? I always figured that Connecticut was a theme park where they do historical re-enactments, kind of like Colonial Williamsburg, but a quick check of my Rand McNally road atlas tells me that yes, Connecticut is a state. Whoda thunk it? I see from the atlas statistics that Connecticut ranks 29th in population among the states with about 3.4 million people (one slot ahead of Iowa, which has about 2.9 million people) and it also ranks 48th in size with 5,018 square miles. Five thousand square miles? Dude, the military's got bases bigger than the Whole State of Connecticut. What's their State Motto: "Connecticut - Kicking the Shit out of Delaware & Rhode Island and taking their lunch money since 1789"?



OK, I know that our favorite hunchback and flamewar instigator, lauraw, is from Connecticut, and there were probably a few historical figures who lived in that quaint little state as well. Fine. I'm not saying that Connecticut is "DC without a crack-smoking Mayor". I'm just saying that a state that's famous for nutmeg ain't exactly on the top of everyone's vacation wishlist, ifyouknowwhatImeanandIthinkyoudo.


Anyway, as I was saying, Chris Dodd is a Senator from Connecticut. In case you didn't notice, he also ran for President this year. Awwwww, isn't it cute. I guess everyone's fifth grade homeroom teacher was right: ANYONE can run for President in America. He's in the news again because of a sweetheart deal he managed to finagle from Countrywide Financial on a home loan. Did he get his below-market interest rate because of the fat wads of cash in his bank account, or because of his ability to make money in the private sector? Nope. He got his sweetheart deal the old fashioned way: By sitting on the Senate Banking Committee. While the total savings to Dodd because of the sweetheart deal is still in dispute (estimates I just saw in a piece at TPM Muckracker ranged from $60,000 to $3,000 on both his houses in DC and Connecticut), he's still rightly being raked over the coals for an appearance of a conflict of interest.

Getting back to my point, all this talk about Dodd got me thinking about something I remember from the Iowa Caucus. If you've ever seen Senator Dodd interviewed by a Conservative or even "non-partisan" member of the press (yeah, I know: about as common as your garden variety Unicorn, but I digress), you already know that he's a real progressive condescending jackass. Kind of like a white-haired Tim Robbins, without the thong under his baseball uniform. Anyway, like your typical condescending jackass, Chis Dodd came up with the perfect way to appeal to all us hayseed cousin-humpers out here in flyover country during the Iowa Caucus: Become an Iowa resident!

Now don't get me wrong. This ain't the first time I've seen a politician pandering to get votes. Hell, I'm from Iowa. We get pandered to every four years. What I don't understand is why the Hell someone from Connecticut didn't bother to complain when one of their only two representatives in the United States Senate tries to establish residency in Iowa. I mean, for God's sake, he's their Senator, and he even went so far as to enroll his oldest kid in school here in Iowa while he was pulling this stunt. If that's not "abandoning your constituents", I don't know what the hell that phrase even means anymore. Are the people of Connecticut all puddin' eating retards who don't understand the concept of "residency"?

Wait, don't answer that question. I really don't want to know.

The funny part of the story? Even after all of his pandering - the phony Iowa Residency, going to the Yearly Kos convention and kissing Markos' ring, and even trying to gin up a feud with Bill O'Reilly - Chris Dodd didn't manage to get a single freakin' delegate in Iowa. He and Joe Biden dropped out of the caucus within minutes of the results being announced. Since the final outcomes at Iowa Democratic Caucus events are not indicative of the initial votes (voters are asked to change their vote away from "non-viable" candidates who get less than 15% of the vote during any ballot over the course of the night), we'll never know for sure exactly how many voters selected Dodd on the first ballot, but I'm sure he was somewhere between "syphilis" and "a swift kick in the nuts".

Not a single damn delegate from Iowa. Hey, it's not as if Iowans are especially smart: we keep sending Tom Harkin back to the Senate, right? I guess that even a bunch of corn-picking rubes could see that Chris Dodd is an empty suit of epic proportions. Too bad the people of Connecticut haven't noticed that yet.

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posted by Russ from Winterset at 06:00 AM

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