Blurt: Seven Days Staff Blog

NOTE: Blurt has been retired and is no longer updated regularly. For new content, follow these links:

OFF MESSAGE: Vermont News and Politics
BITE CLUB: Food and Drink Blog

« Best Bites: Koto Restaurant | Main | Got Jobs? Feds Giveth & the State Taketh »

October 14, 2009

Vermont's Future (Governor)?

DunnePotential Democratic gubernatorial candidate Matt Dunne has launched a website asking the simple question: "What is the future of Vermont?"

Though he stresses this is not an announcement that he's running for governor, Dunne did tell Seven Days he has opened a bank account so he can be ready to go if he decides to run. And he will decide soon. He'll make announcement next month.

In an email asking people to contribute ideas at the site, Dunne said he wants people to share their ideas on how to improve Vermont.

"In 2010 we will elect a new Governor. Together, we will be building a new future and entering a new era in Vermont's history," wrote Dunne in his email. "As many of you know, I am exploring a run for Governor. During the past month, I have engaged in exciting discussions with Vermonters who are ready to come together to share new ideas to move our state forward. Please join us in this conversation."

If he does jump into the race, he will join an already crowded field. To date, there are three announced candidates for governor: Secretary of State Deb Markowitz, State Sen. Doug Racine (Chittenden), and State Sen. Susan Bartlett (Lamoille).

In addition, Senate President Pro Tem Peter Shumlin (D-Windham) is also exploring a run for governor. He'll make his announcement in November as well.

Dunne's effort to reach out beyond a "kitchen table cabinet" list of advisers and insiders is consistent with the "service politics" theme he ran on in 2006 when he challenged Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie (and lost). In fact, out of that campaign came the Service Politics Institute. It also matches up with his tech-related background, and his current position with Google as the firm's U.S. manager of community affairs.

In his email, Dunne said his own life and work experiences in the past few years have stirred up new ideas that he believes will help Vermont better face the future.

"But in leading organizations large and small, I’ve learned that no one — not even a new Governor — can bring about change alone. That’s why I’m asking you to share your thoughts and ideas," said Dunne.

This governor's race is about so much more than the candidates. It's about YOU and your ideas for the next era of Vermont. Say your peace over at

Oh for heaven's sake. It's not about Dunne's ego and his thirst for power -- no, it's about the "future of Vermont" and a "community conversation." Yeah, right.

VT needs to get busy implementing a forward thinking vision for the future! Go Matt Dunne!

Someday a politician will say, "I'm running for governor because I'm the most qualified and I want the job. Here's EXACTLY how I expect to vote on the following issues if I'm elected ____________. I'm not going to issue any vague, feel-good, say-nothing crap about "new future," "new era," "exciting discussions," "coming together," "new ideas," "conversations," and "forward thinking visions for the future."

If a politician said that, and I agreed with his/her expected votes, I'd vote for him/her.

I'm tired and disgusted with being fed nothing-speak by politicians who want to appeal to everybody and offend nobody by talking while actually saying absolutely nothing. You can't tell a damn thing about this candidate and his views on the any policy decisions that will come up in the next gubernatorial term (2011-2013) from that babble quoted above.

Spitting image of Richard Nixon.

Re: I'm tired and disgusted with being fed nothing-speak by politicians who want to appeal to everybody and offend nobody by talking while actually saying absolutely nothing.
Translation: "I'm already sick on Obama. What has he done"

Easy to vote against this lad as his previous attack war on Brian Dubie was about as low on the Vt. political scene that one can get.

Actually Dunne never said anything about Dubie that isn't 100% true.

That said, Dunne is a lot less qualified for the job than Racine, Markowitz or Bartlett. He should run for Auditor.

"Easy to vote against this lad as his previous attack war on Brian Dubie was about as low on the Vt. political scene that one can get."

Yeah, Dunne's campaign against Dubie was pretty pathetic.

But nothing in recent electoral history comes anywhere close to Ed "Bulldog" Flanagan's 2000 campaign against Jim Jeffords. That moved the bar dramatically to a shocking new low.

Actually Matt Dunne is more experienced than any other politician in the race. During his time in Washington he managed a federal department (AmericorpVISTA) that is only a few Douglas layoffs smaller than the entire Vermont State Government. He also served for at least 10 years in state government, first in the House and then in the Senate. He has experience in a higher ed institution (the Rockefeller Center at Dartmouth) and in the private sector (Google and earlier marketing and communications companies). He has also been deeply involved in the arts -- co-founding the Vermont Film Council, among other organizations; authored farsighted economic development legislation, and lobbied to put "economic development" into the Senate Committee on "ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, HOUSING AND GENERAL AFFAIRS"

I know Matt... and I'm not going to vote for him. His race against Brian was lame, but his blatant self-promotion is too much for me.

More experienced than a former Lt. Gov and the woman who has Chaired the Aprops Committee for the last ten years? No. Not even close.

Matt has bounced around and had a lot of mid-level government jobs. He's a nice guy. That's about it.

"Thirst for power" -- to be Governor of VERMONT? Seriously? Gee, I can't even imagine the Machiavellian machinations that must happen in, say, Nebraska!

Regardless of whether this particular politician is "self promoting" or not, it DOES seem like a pretty good idea to think about the future of the state, given how much we've been standing still these past eight years. Say what you want about Jim Douglas, he had zero ideas for taking the state forward.

i am republican so on the issues we may be at odds (although matt has become increasingly centered) but what i like about him is that i feel no one would work harder to get things done. dubie may have been lt. gov. but this hardly makes him more qualified if you look at the actual time he put into the job. matt's campaign against him was meant to shine light on this fact and i don't think that was such a bad thing. matt has ideas and thoughts which he actually intends to bring to fruition. he wants to work hard and that's what you want from someone you are paying for a job.

Dunne is not more experienced than Shumlin. Shumlin has run a small business, served in a leadership role in the Senate and has created and articulated a clear vision for the state. So, I am supporting Shumlin.

If Matt truly wants what's best for the state, he'll back out and endorse one of the candidates and instead run for Lt. Governor. That is where he is best suited for the moment and in a few years, I will likely support him for Gov.

But, his time is not yet and he needs to cook some more.

Shumlin? Yeah, he's experienced -- at shameless self-promotion! The guy will say anything!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Stuck in VT (VIDEOS)

Solid State (Music)

Mistress Maeve (Sex)

All Rights Reserved © Da Capo Publishing Inc. 1995-2012 | PO Box 1164, Burlington, VT 05402-1164 | 802-864-5684