Who am I?
I currently represent Chittenden County in the Vermont Senate -- just finishing up my first term there. I consider myself a very progressive Democrat -- the sort Howard Dean was referring to when he described himself as representing the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party. My political work began on Vermont Public Radio, where I was a rabble-rousing commentator for 12 years; I then started a political blog called The Vermont Daily Briefing (vermontdailybriefing.com), which is still the best place to find out my views on specific issues, using the Search button at the top.
Why am I running?
When I ran in 2010, closing down Vermont Yankee -- Vermont's only nuclear plant -- was one of my top goals, and the decisions over the aging plant's future were being decided in the Senate. I wanted to be one of the 30 Senators voting on Yankee's future. Maybe more importantly, I wanted to push single-payer health care forward with all my might, and there too it seemed that a Senate seat would provide a more effective place from which to push. I've worked on both those issues over the last two years, with great success on the health care front, and not so much on the Yankee front. But just because the ordinary channels were closed on Yankee -- due to pending court and PSB action -- that didn't mean I sat idle. On March 22 of this past year, I was one of 136 people who engaged in civil disobedience at the plant, part of a coordinated series of actions at nuclear facilities in NY and LA.
First, I plan to introduce a GMO labeling bill on Day One of the session -- the goal there is to make sure that either from the House or the Senate side, a labeling bill goes forward for full floor debate and vote. We got almost halfway there last session in the House, but suddenly momentum flagged -- I'm determined this time to make sure we have more control over the issue in the Senate. Second, I'll be reintroducing a marijuana decriminalization bill that I co-authored with Senator Joe Benning last session. We've been building support for it over the off-season, and we both believe it has an excellent change of succeeding. Again, the goal is a full floor debate, with a straight up or down vote, rather than what we got last year -- a vote that required a super-majority. Those are the practical goals. Ideal goals? Pass both by May Day.
My DFA Values
This legacy campaign is missing this information
My Campaign is People Powered!
According to Common Cause, I raised the most last cycle (in the Senate races) from individuals -- no corporate money. So small donors have been and continue to be the foundation of the campaign's bottom line. I used ActBlue specifically because the money then also feeds into a progressive line of candidates nationally. And one more example: my social media has been innovative and helped other candidates with less reach promote themselves over these platforms. Through my blog and Facebook, I've made a point of promoting Doug Hoffer for Auditor, TJ Donovan for AG, and Beth Pearce for Treasurer.