Saturday, September 30, 2006

This week's wrap up

Tomorrow is the last day of the push to contact Senator Hagel's office to encourage him to run for President in 2008. If you haven't done so already, please send an email or fill out his Senate page's contact form today.

This week marked the introduction of the first poll this site has done, so please vote in it to let us know what issues are important to you.

Please continue to vote for Chuck Hagel in on-line polls to increase the buzz. Take a few seconds and go and vote in each of these polls. Senator Hagel is in a close second place in the Politics Central poll (which has six more days before it closes). There are also other on going polls out there at The Next Prez, The Krusty Konservative, 2008 Political Perspective, and 2008 Horserace. Please comment and let me know if there are other 2008 polls out there that are not listed here.

Lastly, Chuck Hagel's birthday is this week. He turns 60 on Wednesday, October 4th. Please contact his office to wish him a happy birthday.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Draft Hagel - Letter writing campaign

The Ohio for Hagel blog has a great idea.
Ohio for Hagel 2oo8 will be going door to doot next Saturday to recruit new members and to get people to write letters to Chuck to encourage him to run in 2008. So clear your day October 1, 2008 and join us in the fun...CHUCK HAGEL 2008 BANK ON IT!
This week our effort will be to get people to write letters, emails, or faxes to Senator Hagel's Senate office or his PAC to let him know that we want him to run for President. This week, between now and Oct. 1, please contact Senator Hagel and tell him to run for President in 2008.

Contact information:
Senate Web Contact Form

Washington, D.C. Office

248 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Tel: (202) 224-4224
Fax: (202) 224-5213

Friday, September 22, 2006

First Poll

The first poll on the Chuck Hagel for President 2008 blog is now up and running. It is a poll of what issues you consider to be the most important. The poll is on the left side of the blog part way down. Go and vote. If there are issues you would like to see added to it, or if you check other, please post a comment and let me know what other issues are important to you.

On-line poll recap

Here are a number of on-line polls in which you can vote for Chuck Hagel:

Politics Central
The Next Prez
The Krusty Konservative
2008 Political Perspective
2008 Horserace

The reason we share these is that we want to drive the on-line buzz around Senator Hagel. The better he does in all of these polls, the better off he will be if/when he decides to run. Please go and vote Hagel in these polls.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Hagel statement on China

Yesterday the Congressional-Executive Commission on China released its report. The following is Senator Hagel's statement, which is available at his Senate Website.
Opening Statement by U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel, Chairman, Congressional-Executive Commission on China
“Human Rights and Rule of Law in China”

September 20th, 2006 - “The Commission issues a report each year to the Congress and to the President on human rights conditions and the development of the rule of law in China. In connection with today's release of the 2006 Annual Report, the Commission has asked a distinguished group of witnesses to assess the current state of civil rights and criminal defense; freedom of expression; and efforts to adopt democratic institutions of governance, implement legislative reform, and improve the environment for domestic and international civil society groups in China.
The Commission will also hear the perspective of the witnesses on how the United States might best engage with the Chinese government through dialogue on human rights and rule of law issues.

In its 2006 Annual Report, the Commission expresses deep concern that some Chinese government policies designed to address growing social unrest and bolster Communist Party authority are resulting in a period of declining human rights for China's citizens. The Commission identified limited improvements in the Chinese government's human rights practices in 2004, but backward-stepping government decisions in 2005 and 2006 are leading the Commission to reevaluate the Chinese leadership's commitment to additional human rights improvements in the near term. In its 2005 Annual Report, the Commission highlighted increased government restrictions on Chinese citizens who worship in state-controlled venues or write for state-controlled publications. These restrictions remain in place, and in some cases, the government has strengthened their enforcement.

The Commission notes the progress that the Chinese government has made over the past 25 years in beginning to build a political system based on the rule of law and on respect for basic human rights. The twin demands of social stability and continued economic progress have spurred legal reforms that may one day be the leading edge of constraints on the arbitrary exercise of state power. The government's achievements in the economic realm are impressive, none more so than its success in lifting more than 400 million Chinese citizens out of extreme poverty since the early 1980s.

While all of these changes are important, the gap between forward-looking economic freedoms and a backward-looking political system remains significant. There are leaders now within China who comprehend the need for change, and who understand that inflexibility, secretiveness, and a lack of democratic oversight pose the greatest challenges to continued development. These leaders will need to gather considerable reformist courage to overcome obstacles and push for continued change. Such changes will not occur overnight, but rather in ways that Chinese society, culture, infrastructure, and institutions must be prepared for and willing to accept.

To help us better understand human rights conditions and the development of the rule of law in China, we now turn to our witnesses.
Professor Jerome A. Cohen is a Professor of Law at the New York University School of Law; an Adjunct Senior Fellow on Asia at the Council of Foreign Relations; and Of Counsel at the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. Professor Cohen is a leading expert on the Chinese legal system and the international relations of East Asia. As an attorney, he has long represented foreign companies in contract negotiations and dispute resolution in China and other countries in East Asia. As Director of East Asian Legal Studies at Harvard Law School from 1964 to 1979, Professor Cohen pioneered the study of East Asian legal systems in American legal curricula. He has published numerous books and articles on Chinese law, including Contract Laws of the People's Republic of China; The Criminal Process in the PRC: 1949-1968; and The Plight of China's Criminal Defense Lawyers.

After Professor Cohen, we will hear from Mr. John Kamm. Mr. Kamm is Executive Director of The Dui Hua Foundation; a Member of the Board of Directors for the National Committee on US-China Relations; and Director of Stanford University's Project in Human Rights Diplomacy. Since 1990, Mr. Kamm has been an advocate on behalf of prisoners of conscience in China and has made more than 70 trips to Beijing in an effort to engage the Chinese government in a dialogue on human rights. Mr. Kamm was awarded the Best Global Practices Award by former President Bill Clinton in June 1997. He was also granted the Eleanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award by President George W. Bush in December 2001 and a MacArthur Fellowship in September 2004. Mr. Kamm was the Hong Kong representative of the National Council for US-China Trade from 1976 to 1981 and was president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong in 1990.

Dr. Minxin Pei will provide perspectives on democratic governance and development of civil society. Dr. Pei is Senior Associate and Director of the China Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Dr. Pei is an expert on China, U.S.-China relations, Taiwan, East Asia, and the development of democratic political systems. Dr. Pei is the author of numerous books and articles on China, including China's Governance Crisis; Rebalancing United States - China Relations; and Future Shock: The WTO and Political Change in China. In his most recent book, China's Trapped Transition: The Limits of Developmental Autocracy, Dr. Pei examines the sustainability of the Chinese Communist Party's reform strategy -- pursuing pro-market policies under one-party rule.

Mr. Xiao Qiang will share his expertise on freedom of expression in China. Mr. Xiao is Director of the China Internet Project at the University of California at Berkeley. Mr. Xiao is a recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship and is currently teaching classes on "new media and human rights in China" at the University of California at Berkeley. Mr. Xiao was the Executive Director of the U.S. NGO "Human Rights in China" from 1991 to 2002. Mr. Xiao spoke at each meeting of the UN Commission on Human Rights from 1993 to 2001, and has lectured on the promotion of human rights and democracy in China in over 40 countries. Mr. Xiao currently runs the China Digital Times Internet news portal and is a weekly commentator for Radio Free Asia.

We welcome all of our witnesses today and appreciate their time and presentations.”
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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Chuck Hagel grassroots movement

This blog is dedicated to promoting the Draft Chuck Hagel grassroots movement. To facilitate communication between supporters of Chuck Hagel, numerous groups have been formed (Google, Myspace, Yahoo, MOYahoo, SCYahoo), so please join one (or more) if you are interested in helping out with the movement (or feel free to start your own if your state isn't represented).

Those of us in the movement are seeking suggestions as to who to expand and organize the Hagel movement. If you have any suggestions, please post them as a comment or email me.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


While it may not be directly related to electing Chuck Hagel the next President of the United States...

Today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day.

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Monday, September 18, 2006

Republicans growing more skeptical of the President

The New York Times had an interesting article on Friday.
Mr. Bush has plenty of supporters in this Denver suburb and the surrounding cities, an evenly divided swing district that is a bellwether in the battle for control of the House. But interviews over the last three days here found Republicans, Democrats and independents all expressing degrees of skepticism about Mr. Bush’s motives in delivering a set of high-profile speeches on terrorism and the war in Iraq two months before Election Day.
If the Republicans want to chart a new course on Iraq, Chuck Hagel is the the man for the job.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Constitution Day

Today is Constitution Day, the anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787.

Happy Constitution Day!

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Saturday, September 16, 2006

Video of Wednesday's AEI Event

The video of Wednesday's AEI event is available on the web here. If you are so inclined, go and check it out.

P2008 - Democracy in Action

P2008 - Democracy in Action is an excellent site run by Eric Appleman. It has an extensive set of 2008 resources and explanations, as well as a large collection of independent blogs regarding the 2008 Presidential race.
You can check out his page on Hagel, his page on independent activity on the web for Hagel, and a brief conversation with me.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Public Health Threat legislation

Senator Hagel has proposed legislation to combat public health threats in the United States.
Hagel & Terry Introduce Bill to Coordinate the Reporting of Emergent Conditions

September 14th, 2006
- WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) and Representative Lee Terry (NE-02) introduced today in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives the “National Reportable Conditions Act.” Emergent conditions are cases or suspected cases of infectious diseases, contaminations and events such as chemical spills, which are of sufficient public health concern to require rapid reporting from state to national health jurisdictions. This legislation would form an advisory board that would create and update a list of emergent conditions and establish standards for reporting. Additionally, an automated federal electronic reporting system would be created to report and analyze emergent conditions. The legislation would enhance inter-agency coordination by certifying a list of reported conditions through the Department of Homeland Security.

“It is critical for the United States Government to have a coordinated and uniform system in place that is prepared to handle public health threats such as an act of bioterrorism or an outbreak of avian flu. This legislation will ensure the federal government responds to possible health threats in a timely manner with the correct allocation of resources,” Hagel said.

“It is short-sighted for the United States to not have a nationally coordinated public health reporting system, especially when we all recognize the serious dangers presented by pandemic illnesses and the threat of bioterrorism,” Terry said. “Nebraska’s world class research facilities makes us a natural choice to be leaders in this significant area of homeland security.”

The current system of reporting emergent conditions is voluntary, and differs across all 50 states. When states do report an emergent condition, it is currently communicated through different federal agencies. For example, the contamination of water and air is through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); food contamination is through either the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) or the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA); and infectious disease in humans through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“A gap currently exists in the nation's preparedness infrastructure for the detection of a variety of emergent conditions. This legislation will provide a national approach that is uniform and coordinated, which will be essential to the protection of the nation's health in the face of a new disease, attack or other threatening condition. In today's environment, this effort is an important step toward ensuring the safety and health of all Americans,” said Professor Steven Hinrichs, director of the Center for Biosecurity at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Another step on the path to energy independence

Senator Hagel understands the critical role that energy policy plays in our world today and how interconnected it is to other critical areas, such as foreign policy and agricultural policy. Previous posts on Chuck Hagel and energy policy are here and here.

Here is a an excert from a press release from Senator Hagel's office with regard to his latest work on energy policy.
Hagel Original Co-Sponsor of Bill to Expand Renewable Energy Projects

September 12th, 2006 - U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) joined a bipartisan group of senators today in introducing the “Rural Energy for America Act of 2006.” The legislation would expand the availability of grants and loans under Section 9006 of the 2002 Farm Bill to farmers, ranchers, rural businesses and school districts for assistance with purchasing renewable energy systems and to make energy efficiency improvements.

“Investment in renewable energy and energy related projects will be critical to address our nation’s growing energy needs. This legislation provides funding for many Nebraskans who are developing renewable energy projects or updating existing energy operations."

This legislation would do the following:
• set aside 20% for program funding for state and regional organizations to establish rebate programs for renewable energy projects;
• add rural school districts to the list of those eligible for funding;
• ensure that projects that receive grants receive the full renewable energy production tax credit; and
• gradually increase funding for the program from $115 million over five years to $250 million over five years.


Today we passed the 5,000 unique visitors mark (the blog has had over 6,200 hits total).

Senator Hagel praised by the Episcopal Church

Chuck Hagel was one of two Episcopalian Senators priased by the Episocpal Church for leadership in Middle East peace efforts.
[Episcopal News Service] Two United States senators, Episcopalians Chuck Hagel (Republican-Nebraska) and Lincoln Chafee (Republican-Rhode Island), "are continuing to show extraordinary leadership" on the difficult issues surrounding recent developments in the Middle East, according to Maureen Shea, director of the Episcopal Church's Office of Government Relations.

Hagel and Chafee, who both serve on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, have been independent voices and are raising significant points about the search for Middle East peace and the need for greater leadership by the United States, Shea said.

Shea's remarks were echoed by the Rev. Canon Brian J. Grieves, director of Peace and Justice Ministries for the Episcopal Church. "There's no doubt that a resolution of the Israel/Palestinian conflict will require serious and fair-minded engagement from the United States," Grieves said. "Senators Hagel and Chafee offer hope that sustained U.S. leadership by the Administration will receive support from important members of Congress."


Both senators are firm in their commitment to the State of Israel and its security, Shea said. Hagel noted our "special and historic" relationship with Israel but said that relationship "cannot be at the expense of our Arab and Muslim relationships… Achieving a lasting resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict is as much in Israel's interest as any other country in the world."


Shea commented that Hagel, a conservative Republican, has consistently questioned the Bush Administration on both the conduct of the war in Iraq and of its Middle East diplomacy. In Hagel's speech, much of which he later repeated on the Senate floor, he called upon President Bush and Rice to be "deeply engaged" in the Middle East and with both Syria and Iran.

"The Middle East need not be a region forever captive to the fire of war and historical hatred," Hagel said. "It can avoid this fate if the United States pursues sustained and engaged leadership worthy of our history, purpose, and power.

Check out the full story here or here.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

New GOP Bloggers Straw Poll

The GOP Bloggers have a new 2008 straw poll. Go and vote Hagel!

Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11th Anniversary

Today we mark the 5th anniversary of the September 11th attacks. We remember the words of Senator Hagel on that fateful day.
"We are changed forevermore," Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) said on that bright and horrific day when the Twin Towers of New York's World Trade Center collapsed in rubble, one side of the Pentagon lay smoldering along the banks of the Potomac and a field in Pennsylvania had been turned into a graveyard for the passengers on hijacked United Flight 93.
Quote from the Washington Post

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Sunday, September 10, 2006

Chuck Hagel events this week

Monday, September 11th (8 AM):
September 11th ceremony in Omaha
Community 9/11 Ceremony: There will be a public ceremony on Monday, Sept. 11 at 8 a.m. at Heartland of America Park in Omaha. Speakers will include Gen. James E. Cartwright, Commander, U.S. STRATCOM, Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., Congressman Lee Terry, R-Neb., Nebraska Lt. Gov. Rick Sheehy and Omaha Mayor Mike Fahey. A rescue dog that searched for survivors at the World Trade Center will be present, and the Omaha Chapter, Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge will present flags that have flown over the U.S. Capitol Building to police, fire and veterans' groups.
These details from here.

Wednesday, September 13th (9:30 AM):
Breakfast at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) in D.C.

In just a few months, Jim Lockhart, the new director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO), has shown himself to be a nonpartisan administrator, a quick study, and a practical man. Since taking office, he has repeatedly asked Congress, with increasing urgency, for the additional authority OFHEO requires for effective regulation of the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Nonetheless, a Senate committee bill that would provide the necessary powers remains stalled because of partisan disagreements. In this breakfast address, Mr. Lockhart�in light of the softening housing market and its possible effect on the GSEs�will press once again for Senate action.

Mr. Lockhart�s address will be followed by remarks by Senator Chuck Hagel (R�Neb.), a key proponent of GSE regulatory reform.

For more information, go here.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

It's been a good couple of weeks...

It's been a good couple of weeks for the Chuck Hagel grassroots movement.
The Ohio for Hagel 2008 blog and the Wisconsin for Hagel 2008 blog both went on-line last week.
The Chuck Hagel myspace group has been growing, and the Chuck Hagel Google group has seen some activity.
If you feel so inclined, check them out and join the Hagel grassroots movement.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Poll numbers

At least in one poll the support for Chuck Hagel has been growing over the last few months. He's not high in the polls right now, but his name recognition is still low and he has not been campaigning (for himself, anyway). The movement is in the right direction, though.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Spread the Word

The Ohio for Hagel 2008 blog has a great idea, something that people can do now to help on the road to 2008:
Ohio for Hagel is planning a November Blitz ! We will be working the polls in our areas for Republican candidates, and at the same time begin to promote Chuck Hagel as our next President by passing out info about us and why we support Senator Hagel. Our mission is simple keep control of the House and Senate and encourage Chuck Hagel to run in 2008 by growing a strong grassroots effort in Ohio.
Work to support Republican candidates and make inroads with other Republicans in your area. Maybe even wear a Hagel 2008 button while you do so. Spread the word!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Chuck Hagel - Social Conservative (part 2)

Today we continue with the topic from yesterday, Chuck Hagel's social conservative credentials. Yesterday we looked at interest group ratings based on his voting record. Today we will look at two of his statements that went with recent votes on social conservative issues.

Here is one statement from July:
Senate Passes Child Custody Protection Act
July 26th, 2006 - WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Senate today passed The Child Custody Protection Act (S.403) by a vote of 65 to 34. U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) was an original cosponsor of the bill.

This legislation makes it a crime to transport a minor across state lines to obtain an abortion if the purpose is to circumvent a state parental notification or parental consent law. Nebraska requires a parent to be notified before a minor has an abortion. A majority of states have laws that require a parent to give consent or be notified before a teenage girl can obtain an abortion.

“State parental notification and consent laws have been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court. These responsible state laws should not be circumvented by those who would take a young girl across state lines for an abortion. It is in the interest of a young pregnant daughter to have parental involvement in their medical decisions. This legislation reaffirms states’ authority to enact and enforce their own laws regarding abortions,” Hagel said.
Senator Hagel took the more socially conservative (and somewhat controversial stance) on the stem cell legislation this summer.
July 18th, 2006 - WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) released the following statement today regarding his vote against allowing federal funding to be used for expanded stem cell research:

“Whether to federally fund research on embryonic stem cells is a very complex issue with significant long term consequences. Moral, religious, ethical, scientific and health considerations all come together on the embryonic stem cell research question.

“I do not support using taxpayer dollars for the destruction of human embryos. That is the reason I voted against legislation today to expand federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. I did vote to support promising research on adult stem cells and on ways to harvest stem cell lines without destroying human embryos. In 2001, I supported the decision President Bush made to allow federally funded stem cell research to proceed only under strict guidelines which will not result in the destruction of any additional human embryos.

“I will support President Bush’s veto of this legislation,” Hagel said.
Clearly, Chuck Hagel is a solid social conservative.
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Monday, September 04, 2006

Chuck Hagel - Social Conservative (part 1)

As long as I'm back on series of posts from last month, I'll add another couple of posts to the series of Chuck Hagel the conservative. While Chuck Hagel's focus has never been social conservative issues, his voting record is clearly that of a social conservative.

Here are some interest group ratings based upon his voting record to give you a sense of what his voting record looks like.

Christian Coalition
1999-2000 - 100%
2001 - 60%
2003 - 100%
2004 - 100%

American Conservative Union
2000 - 88%
2001 - 84%
2002 - 95%
2003 - 100%
2004 - 87%

You can check out these two and more at this earlier post. His rating on abortion issues is solid:

Rating by NARAL Pro-Choice
2000 - 0%
2001 - 0%
2002 - 0%
2003 - 0%
2004 - 0%
2005 - 0%

Rating by National Right to Life Committee
1999-2000 - 100%
2001-2002 - 100%
2003-2004 - 82%

Here are Senator Hagel's ratings by family issues interest groups:

Family Research Council
2000 - 100%
2003 - 100%
2004 - 83%

American Family Association
2003 - 100%
2004 - 100%

You can find the previous in this series here, here, and here.

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Your reasons for a Hagel Presidency (Part 6)

Today we continue in the series on "Why do you want Chuck Hagel to be our next President?" Please feel free email in your responses to this question. This is another of the answers posted over at the Chuck Hagel Google Group.
I concur with mbbar, particularly in regard to foreign policy. Senator Hagel, like his friend Colin Powell, is an internationalist and does not view organisations like the UN and NATO as being a hinderance at best, but rather as institutions, vital not only to the well being of our friends and allies, but integral to world order, peace and stability.

In regards to Citizen rights/privacy, Senator Hagel recently came at loggerheads with the President over a unilateral decision to abrogate a 1978 law prohibiting wiretapping, which the President has declared outdated and irrelevant. This represents a dangerous trend that students of Constitutional Law call Unitary Executive Theory, meaning that the Legislative and Judicial branches have limited ability to counteract the powers of the presidency.

Furthermore, Senator Hagel is one of the few voices of true Jeffersonian democracy, and by that I mean that Government should be open to criticism and scrutiny, and to participate in this is not unpatriotic. Perhaps the best example of how he embodies this is when he remarked, "I made an oath to my country and the constitution, I did not make an oath to my party or my president."

Despite the New York Times naming Senator Hagel as a Republican Loner, this is very much not the case. He has a pro business, pro free trade, and pro life voting record, and has drawn favorable ratings from the chamber of commerce and pro life groups. Perhaps he is far more in tune with the principles of the party of Teddy Roosevelt and Abe Lincoln than most of his peers.
Thanks for the post!

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Your reasons for a Hagel Presidency (Part 5)

Last month I did a series on the reasons people gave why they want Chuck Hagel as the next President of the United States. Today and tomorrow we will have a continuation of that series.
Here is one reader's reason:
I have always voted for Republican candidates, but am dismayed by the course the current administration has taken with respect to fiscal policy, citizen rights/privacy, and foreign policy. I believe that Chuck Hagel is one of the few politicians that has the experience and perspective that can bring the country back on course. He will have a difficult time with the far right wing of the Republican Party, which seems to believe that government should dictate how people live their lives, and that their religious beliefs are the only ones that matter. We need to somehow overcome the resistance of that wing to his candidacy so that he can defeat their lap dogs during the primaries.
Thanks, mbbar!

Here are the previous posts in the series: post 1, post 2, post 3, post 4, post 5.

Friday, September 01, 2006

September Polls at The Next Prez

The Next Prez has its September polls up now. Be sure to go and vote for Chuck Hagel.