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December 04, 2013

This Week's Issue: COTS Stations, Mobile Meals and 2014 Election News


Cover-120413Boy, how about those F-35s, huh? When you're done reading about the planes on this here blog, check out the stories on other newsy topics in this week's Seven Days.

Read all about it in print, online or on the iOS app.

Cover photo of folk singer Rik Palieri by Matthew Thorsen.

November 20, 2013

This Week's Issue: Union Drives, Big-Money Developers and a Long Time in the Clink

112013-coverAnother week, another Wednesday, another Seven Days. Here's this week's lineup of news and politics stories:

Pick up this issue in print, online or on the iOS app.

October 17, 2013

Welch Raises $213K in Campaign Cash; Leahy, Sanders Raise $30K

The Federal Election Commission was closed early this week when quarterly fundraising reports came due, but that didn't keep members of Vermont's congressional delegation from reporting how much money they'd raised.

Of the trio, Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vt.) collected by far the most for his campaign coffers in the three months ending September 30. The four-term House member took in more than $213,000 and spent nearly $64,000, leaving him with $1.3 million in the bank. 

Welch's two-year term expires in November 2014, while Sen. Patrick Leahy's (D-Vt.) and Sen. Bernie Sanders' (I-Vt.) six-year terms end in 2016 and 2018, respectively.

Both senators raised roughly the same amount last quarter. Leahy took in $31,000 and spent $68,000, leaving him with $1.6 million cash on hand. Sanders, meanwhile, raised $33,000 and spent $35,000. His $4 million war chest remains by far the largest.

Continue reading "Welch Raises $213K in Campaign Cash; Leahy, Sanders Raise $30K " »

October 11, 2013

Sanders to Travel South With Democratic Super PAC

DSC05683After sitting in on the U.S. Supreme Court's oral arguments for a major campaign finance case Tuesday morning, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) stood outside the court and railed against the influence of super PACs in American politics.

Next week, however, Sanders plans to join forces with a Democratic super PAC for a three-day, four-state tour of the southern United States. Organized by South Forward, Sanders' "Fight for Economic Justice Town Hall Meetings," will take him to Jackson, Miss., Birmingham, Ala., Atlanta, Ga., and Columbia, S.C.

"It's just a great opportunity and the response has been overwhelming," says South Forward executive director Jay Parmley, who says he expects between 150 and 200 people to attend each of Sanders' town hall meetings. "I think he'll be able to provide a shot in the arm for progressives and a shot in the arm for Democrats."

Continue reading "Sanders to Travel South With Democratic Super PAC" »

September 16, 2013

Shumlin Taps Cheney, a Norwich Democrat, for Public Service Board

CheneyWhen Seven Days' Ken Picard covered the state's little-understood Public Service Board last year, he referred to its three members as "Vermont's most powerful men you've never heard of."

Come October, those three will remain all-powerful — but they won't all be old white dudes.

On Monday, Gov. Peter Shumlin appointed Rep. Margaret Cheney (D-Norwich) to replace David Coen, who's retiring after 18 years on the board. She'll be charged with overseeing Vermont's regulated utilities, which include everything from electric power to telecommunications to pipeline gas.

After seven years on the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee — including four as its vice chairwoman — Cheney (pictured here) says she's looking forward to her new assignment, which begins when she's sworn in on October 1.

"It builds on a base of knowledge I've been accumulating over the last seven years. Working on energy issues, I feel like I've almost earned an advanced degree," Cheney says.

Continue reading "Shumlin Taps Cheney, a Norwich Democrat, for Public Service Board" »

September 11, 2013

Shumlin Discloses Details of Weekend Meetings with DGA Donors

DSC05700Calling himself the "transparency governor," Peter Shumlin on Wednesday identified who he met with privately last Saturday at a Democratic Governors Association retreat in Manchester.

As we reported in this week's Fair Game, Shumlin and three fellow Democratic governors wined and dined five- and six-figure donors to the partisan electoral organization last weekend at the Equinox Resort and Spa. Between official events, according to lobbyists who attended the gathering, the governors met privately with some of the DGA's top donors.

Last Thursday, DGA spokesman Danny Kanner claimed that Shumlin "has no scheduled meetings or events between breakfast and dinner on Saturday." Asked again Monday who Shumlin met with over the weekend, Kanner declined to answer the question.

Seven Days put the question to spokespeople for Shumlin, New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan, Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee. Only the Washingtonian's office responded.

Inslee's communications associate, Lisa Harper, said in an email Monday, "The governor's visit to the DGA this weekend was on his personal time and not an event our office was involved with." Asked who might be able to answer the question, Harper said her office doesn't "interface" with the appropriate person and could not provide a name.

Continue reading "Shumlin Discloses Details of Weekend Meetings with DGA Donors" »

This Week's Issue: Augmented Reality, School Calendar Reform and a Booted Reporter

This week's Seven Days has something new attached to it: augmented reality! Now you can interact with the old-fashioned print edition with the help of a smartphone or tablet. All you have to do is download the Layar app and scan whenever you see the little symbol, and the page will come to life. In the screenshots below, you'll see what happens to the cover...


With Layar, dancers start to dance across the paper! Whoa! We are living in the Harry Potter universe, people.

Once you're done with that, there's lots of good news and politics content for your consideration, too.

August 07, 2013

Fair Game Overtime: Where Does Leahy's PAC Money Come From?

DSC04806In this week's Fair Game, we touched on Sen. Patrick Leahy's (D-Vt.) use of a "leadership PAC" to collect contributions from corporate and union political action committees.

As we noted, only a slim minority (14 percent) of the $136,000 he raised in his traditional campaign account last quarter came from special interest groups. But a majority (70 percent) of the $197,000 he raised for Green Mountain PAC during the first half of the year came from those sources.

We focused in the column on contributions Leahy reaped from the aerospace and weapons industry. But that's not the only sector forking over the dough. Here's a sampling of other groups who contributed $2500 or more to Green Mountain PAC during the first six months of 2013:

  • Labor: IBEW ($5000), Laborers' Political League ($2500), International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers ($5000)
  • Banking: Bank of America ($2500), Deloitte ($5000)
  • Entertainment: Directors Guild of America ($2500), National Association of Broadcasters ($3500), News America/FOX ($2500), Commissioner of Major League Baseball ($5000), Sony Pictures ($5000), Walt Disney ($2500), Viacom ($2500)
  • Telecom/Cable: Comcast/NBC ($5000), DirecTV ($2500), EchoStar/Dish Network ($2500), National Cable and Telecommunications Association ($5000), Verizon ($2500)
  • Law: Alston & Bird ($5000), American Association for Justice ($5000), DLA Piper ($2500)
  • Aerospace/Military: Boeing ($5000), General Dynamics ($5000), Lockheed Martin ($2500), Raytheon ($2500), United Technologies ($3500)
  • Technology: GoDaddy ($2500), Microsoft ($5000), Netflix ($2500)
  • Beverage: Miller Coors ($2500), National Beer Wholesalers ($500O), Wine and Spirits Wholesalers ($5000)

Again, those are just contributions to Green Mountain PAC. Some of those very same organizations also gave money to the senator's traditional campaign account. For instance, General Dynamics gave another $1000 to the Leahy for U.S. Senator Committee; GoDaddy gave another $2000; and Raytheon gave another $1000. 

Continue reading "Fair Game Overtime: Where Does Leahy's PAC Money Come From?" »

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