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Friday, January 20, 2006

Kelly Doran's platform analysis

--posted by Tony Garcia on 1/20/2006

He is running more as the "I'm not them" candidate than the "Here's who I am". I do dock points for this approach as it indicates a lack of confidence in one's own position.

Resotring Honest. Taxes...Doran gives a ton of "I'm not Pawlenty" and "He did this wrong" (- 2) but there is disturbingly little about what Doran believes in. A little more local control for localities own budgets (+ 1) and an end to unfunded mandates (+ 1). But the category is taxes and he gives nothing about tax policy (- 2). What do you believe, Doran? It seems to be nothing.

Iraq...Again with the "I'm not Bush" and "He did this wrong" and "no one is accountable". Shut up and tell us about YOU. (- 3) At the end he mentions taxes on his Iraq platform but still gives us nothing for his own idea (- 2). Since Doran is complaining about Iraq it would be good to know what he believes in as far as foreign policy issues. (- 1) What do you believe in, Kelly? Personally I think it is slimy to bring up international issues for a state wide office (- 1) and is very, well, political. Which is antithetical to the phrase at the bottom of each issues page, "We need more principle and less politics." If you think so, buddy, you should be the starting point. For this conflict in principle you are penalized (- 2).

National Health Care Reform. (- 2) Right off the bat I have to disagree with the concept that this is a fundamental obligation of mine to fund anyone else's health care (- 1). I would give points that he recognizes the need as a private employer to provide health care to employees in order to retain them (gotta love the marketplace) but since he fails to understand that this is a marketplace issue I have to deduct those very points.

Finally he gives us an idea of his own. And it is one that I advocate in the topic of health care. In a nutshell he advocates making health insurance individually portable...making it like car insurance or home insurance or life insurance or...you get the idea. He gets big points (+ 6) for this as MOST of his plan is independent of the government, highly pro-business and would eventually lead to more efficient health care, insurance premiums and coverage. He would get more except he wants to have (a) the requirement that people get coverage which requires the government and (b) the government to help pay for the premiums for those who think they can't pay for their own. I also do not agree with imposing caps on private companies.

Job creation. Again he gives us the "I'm not Pawlenty" crap (- 1) which by this point is getting boring. I'm beginning to think this penalty should be progressively larger. His plan: eliminate regulation (+ 2) and decrease bureaucracy (+ 1). He also mentions invenstment in roads and bridges (+ 2) which is big.

Education. He gets it wrong when he talks against the costs of education being placed on property taxes (- 2). His specific ideas are very bland. Teacher mentoring/training programs without the mention of teacher performance reviews, accountability or skills reviews is not good (- 1). Removing unfunded mandates from the Federal Government is good (+ 1) and would be better if he wanted to end Federal involvement entirely. The call for at least one year of pre-school bothers me (- 1) because Kindergarten is the beginning of the teaching...make the teachers BEGIN the teaching there. Overall the higher ed platform was more fluff. One thing I do have to deduct points for is the idea that not only do higher education institutions have to allow special entrance provisions for low-income minorities (well, some minorities) but they also need to give them MORE government resources so they will finish their degrees (- 2). If someone is not finishing their degree that is their own problem...let them go.

Transportation. More "I'm not Pawlenty" and I'm docking heavier now (- 2). While he claims to be in support of roads and bridges in previous platforms he never mentions them in his transit plan. He mentions rails & buses specifically and "transportation" in general. Sorry, that does not give me the impression that you have the proper perspective on how important roads are AND how much more important they are than rail (- 5).

Pensions. I agree with his premise (regarding loyal employees should get the pensions instead of companies using bankruptcy to avoid the payouts) but do not like the "independent" reviews and boards and etc. That sounds like more of that very bureaucracy that he previously wanted to diminish.

Veterans. More "I'm not Bush" which offsets the points I would have given since I agree with his idea on this plank.

Ethanol. More "Wah, wah, wah, Pawlenty blah blah blah" (- 2) and not much for his own idea on the issue. This tells me that he is looking more at attacking Pawlenty on issues that Doran has no solution for (- 1)

CAFTA. He's against it (+ 1). But then MORE "Blah blah Pawlenty blah blah blah" which I'm sick of now and docking heavier (- 3).

Indian Gaming. Uh, these are "good paying jobs". The the idiots at Inside Minnesota Politics for 'creative facts'...oh, yeah, they don't care when a Democrat does it. Back to Doran. He is against the government being involved in gambling and so am I and this show a little bit of understanding of the proper role of a limited government (+ 2). Legalize it, yes, be a part of it, no. However, he against any expansion which means also being against the legalization (- 1).

Rural Engine. These ideas are simply differentiating between "rural" and the rest of the state. Fine, but what I take objection to is his idea that "rural" folks should have the government help them because their property taxes (determined at the locality level) are too high (- 3). This stands against the responsibilities of a property owner (to pay attention to the factors affecting your property) and usurps local government controls/restraints. Horrible. Health care nationalizing plan...ba-a-a-d (- 3). Transportation bill that he would have signed...is it needed in rural Minnesota? Is the growth really that strong? Could be or could be not, but his focus here is on the road system (+ 1). I would have awarded more points but it is obvious that he only speaks of the need for roads when discussing topics other than transportation by itself. His commitment to roads is half-assed at best. The rest of the platform provides very little to dissect.

Guns. Never addressed concealed carry and instead hides behind the cowardly position of "I support the ownership of guns". Hi, genius, which of your competitors are against that? What is your position on concealed carry. For that obvious oversight I penalize Doran (- 2).

Gay Marriage. He is against it (+ 2) but lacks the cognitive understanding of how a US Constitutional Amendment is necessary to protect the state's rights on this issue (- 1). BTW, civil rights for gays are not the question. They are allowed to have the right to vote, 5th Amendment, 1st Amendment, etc, so that is not the correct term on his website.

Abortion. This should be a state issue. That he does not call for it causes a deduc tion (- 3) as it also shows a lack of small government tendency and lack of federalist tendency. Let's get this back to where it belongs (the state level) before we bitch about pro-abortion or anti-abortion.

Stadium. "I do not believe that state taxpayers should pay for a professional sports stadium." (+ 5) Furthermore he wants this to be decided by the localities (amazing how HERE he has small government tendencies) which I agree with (+ 1).

Check my math...I have a total change of -24.


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