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bfealk Donating Member (420 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-11-06 02:51 PM
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Marcinkowski Aims to take down Rogers' Rising Star
MI 8: Marcinkowski Aims to Take Down Rogers Rising Star\
By Marc Rehmann | 5:36 PM; Jun. 28, 2006 | Email This Article
Michigan Republican Mike Rogers took over a Democratic-held open House seat in 2000 with a victory margin of just 111 votes, which made it the years closest congressional contest. A friendly Republican-drawn redistricting plan that added GOP territory to central Michigans 8th District helped Rogers dominate his next two contests, as did his emergence as a prolific fundraiser.

But Democratic strategists argue that they have something this year that they lacked in 2002 and 2004: a challenger strong enough to give Rogers a serious test. Though Jim Marcinkowski, a lawyer and former CIA case worker, still has much to prove not the least in the area of fundraising his active early campaign efforts have spurred to change its rating on the race to Republican Favored from Safe Republican.

Marcinkowskis background as a CIA operations officer in Washington, D.C, and in Central America, as well as his employment in a clerical position at the FBI in his younger days, creates one of the most interesting dynamics in the contest: Incumbent Rogers is well-known to 8th District voters as a former FBI special agent who now owns a home construction company.

Marcinkowski says he is an acquaintance of Valerie Plame, the former CIA operative whose identity was leaked, allegedly by a source or sources in the White House, after the Bush administrations use of intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war was publicly questioned by her husband, former Amb. Joseph C. Wilson IV. Marcinkowski has expressed outrage over the violation of Plames confidentiality.

Marcinkowski presents two logistical challenges that Rogers has not faced in either of his previous re-election bids.

One is location. Marcinkowski hails from the portion of Oakland County outside Detroit at the eastern end of the 8th District, where he formerly served in the prosecutors office and, according to his campaign biography, set up the countys first prosecution unit for domestic violence.

That gives Rogers, who is from Livingston County in the middle of the 8th, his first direct competition for votes in the portion annexed to the district in the most recent remap. Rogers two previous re-election opponents were from the Lansing area at the western end, which formerly set the tone for the district but diminished in influence after the boundaries were stretched well to the east.

The other gain the Democrats have made with Marcinkowski is in campaign resources. He had enough money to launch a radio ad campaign earlier this month, putting him in contrast to Rogers past two underfinanced opponents.

Nonetheless, Marcinkowski has had to play serious catchup against Rogers. As of March 31, the final date covered by the most recent Federal Election Committee (FEC) reports in this race, the Democrat had $146,000 in total receipts and cash reserves of $117,000 a modest nest egg compared with Rogers $735,000 in receipts and $1 million in the bank (including leftover cash from his 2004 campaign).

The candidates reports for activity through June 30, which must be filed with the FEC by July 15, will thus be reviewed closely by national Democratic strategists as they assess Marcinkowskis ability to stage a serious upset bid.

I think he will run a better race, but Rogers is resourceful, said Paul Abramson, a political science professor at Michigan State University in East Lansing, which is in the 8th District. It is not among the safest seats in the country, but Rogers will campaign hard. His 2000 win shows he can run a hard campaign.

Marcinkowski, though, says he will gain quickly by drawing a constant connection between Rogers and President Bush, who the 8th District favored with 54 percent of its votes in 2004 but whose popularity has since declined there as in many places across the nation.

Rogers supported Bush on 87 percent of House votes on which the president took a position in 2005, according to a CQ study; that figure exceeded the average for House Republicans by 6 percentage points and was third-highest among the nine Republicans in Michigans House delegation.

When people start paying attention, we will be there in a very big way, Marcinkowski told This isnt as much a partisan struggle as it is a struggle for some core principals and core values.

But Republican officials express confidence that Rogers will hold the line by manifesting the districts inherent Republican voting advantage; by emphasizing what he has been able to do for the district, in general and as a member of the influential Energy and Commerce Committee; and his emphasis on national security issues that includes a seat on the Select Intelligence Committee.

The reality is unless there is some type of national sweep, I just dont see any changes, said Michigan Republican Party Chairman Saul Anuzis in a reference to the 8th District race and the congressional delegation as a whole. Everyone is trying to nationalize the race on the Democratic side, and we are trying to localize the race.

Before he can focus on the challenge from Marcinkowski, Rogers faces opposition from Catholic parish business manager Patrick Flynn in the Aug. 8 Republican primary.

Flynn emphasizes his anti-abortion position and argues that Rogers has strayed from his conservative base. But Rogers, who has the endorsements of both the anti-abortion Michigan Right to Life and National Rifle Association, is expected to easily deflect Flynns challenge.
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Lefty48197 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-11-06 05:17 PM
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1. Go get 'em Jim!
Mike Rogers is a disgrace to the voters in this area. He is so embroiled in the Republican's culture of corruption that it's safe to say that he's a major player in their criminal enterprise.

"Rep. Mike Rogers recent $10,000 PAC donation to the campaign of Ohio Congressman Bob Ney went to waste this morning as Ney dropped out of the race for Ohios 18th District. Ney is implicated in the Abramoff influence-peddling scandal, and is under investigation in both Florida and the District of Columbia for his involvement in Abramoffs $23 million casino cruise deal."

"Federal prosecutors have described Ney in court documents as having received gifts, trips and other things of value from Abramoff and his associates. Ney and some of his aides... ...have been subpoenaed."

"Rogers PAC, the Majority Initiative to Keep Electing Republicans (MIKE-R) Fund, also made $10,000 worth of payments to Tom DeLay..."

"Rogers is one of six Congressmen who accepted money from Abramoffs PAC and refused to return it."

"After taking money from Enron (convicted CEO), Duke Cunningham (convicted Congressman) and Jack Abramoff (convicted lobbyist), and giving money to Tom DeLay (indicted) and Bob Ney (soon to be indicted), it should be pretty clear to everyone that Mike Rogers has become a player. He represents what's wrong with Washington and its culture of corruption."

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weeksbr1 Donating Member (59 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-14-06 06:17 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. TV Ads...
Is Jim's campaign going to run any tv ads? We hear how good he is at fundraising and how corrupt Rodgers is... but only on here. If he doesn't run tv ads, how will everyone else know about rodgers? I can't tell everyone in the 8th district! Where are you Jim?
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Lefty48197 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-14-06 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. That might not be his main strategy.
The district runs from northern Oakland Co. thru Brighton and to Lansing. To run TV ads, they would have to buy time in both the Detroit and Lansing markets, and that would be an expensive venture. They'll have to run ads, but they're going to have to find other ways to gain supporters. Maybe they'll run ads in Lansing, because of the heavy concentration of Democrats in that city. The Republicans have gerry-mandered the district enough to get lots of rural conservative white voters who will counter the cultured, ethnic, and working class voters in the Lansing area.

One sure fire way for Democratic candidates to gain voters is with the help of the unions and the churches. Both of those groups have the ability to mobilize large groups of voters, who can give our candidates a fighting chance.

I would recommend that his campaign start there.

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bfealk Donating Member (420 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Aug-14-06 07:50 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Radio ads have already started
Jim's radio ads have already started in Livingston county. There is a link to the radio ad on the web site,
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