"Coercion, Extortion and Blackmail": The Garamendi Campaign is Under Siege
Look carefully, and the specter of the plan coalesces and clarifies before your horrified eyes. If only we had a skillful Democratic Party leadership - block and tackle could be simple, but, alas, we do not. Is it just that they cannot see, or worse. Are they able to see and just not able to act?
First, an unpopular Governor like Gray Davis is taken out. Never a man that could win a popularity contest, people abandoned him at his eleventh hour. He was then replaced by "Arnold" the action hero mega movie star positioned as a moderate Republican governor of the State of California - let the games begin. Next, fatally wound the Secretary of State in his Achilles heal - campaign finance, and replace him with another supposed moderate who happens to have control over the 16 million registered voters in California. Mix in controversy over immigration and the borders, add a contentious Democratic gubernatorial primary with Democratic registrations on the decline, and voila, you have the recipe for an upside down election in November 2006. The state-wide Democratic primaries are vulnerable. Why shouldn't the giant insurance companies think that they can't control an election? Someone should.
And so the stage is set for election extortion and blackmail against the current Insurance Commissioner in his race for Lt. Governor. The insurance companies have decided to pounce upon long-term worthy public servant Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi so that they don't have to deal with him again. Garamendi would not bend to their constant demands and a $2.4 million dollar campaign was launched to take him out of the race for Lt. Governor. The FBI and the Attorney General's office have been called in earlier this month to investigate charges of extortion and election fixing.
When key executives of State Farm, Farmers, Allstate, Safeco and 21st Century approached Garamendi, they wanted him to stand down and not finalize rate regulation for consumers. He was told bluntly to "delay implementation of the new regulations until the next Commissioner takes office, or face a $2 million attack campaign in the days leading up to the June primary election."
To the point, they wanted him to issue rates that were predicated only on zip code. This maneuver could potentially raise insurance rates, protect more affluent neighborhoods, penalize others and create upside down economics for many. Savings would be withheld from many, many consumers, a direct violation of Proposition 103 passed by the Voters in 1988 which has continued to provide consumers with over $23 billion in savings. The bottom line is that under Proposition 103, these companies are required to base their rates on miles driven, safety experience and age, and consideration can be given to other factors such as, where the car is garaged, gender, marital status and many other factors. The Voters already decided.
This Commissioner just could not, and would not, turn his back on the people of the state for his own personal gain. Instead, John Garamendi has continued to fight for the People of California. He would not stand down and let the People lose money that they deserved.
On May 9th, Garamendi launched an FBI investigation and an investigation by the Attorney General against these insurance carriers for the aforementioned strong arm tactics. If he is to survive, if he is to be successful so he can continue his life's work as a true Public Servant (remember when that was not an oxymoron?), if we are truly fed up with the fixing of elections, we must rally to his defense, covering his back with our own. It must stop here!
California Voters - it's time to say no - to election rigging and lobbying by big industry. It's time to take back the democratic process and fight for a candidate that will not bend. We need to take back our power and raise our voices and help candidates that are honest like John Garamendi. Trust me when I tell you that this is not a ploy to gain attention. The reality is the money is being poured into "direct mail campaigns targeting 1.5 million people in 52 counties. The money will be provided by several major auto insurance companies, including the above listed State Farm, Farmers, Allstate, Safeco and 21st Century." 3
The investigations are ongoing, and it is time to give our support to this candidate who has not only has served Our State for over 30 years, but also served in the Clinton Administration's Dept of Interior where he worked to save our environment. Vice President Al Gore has offered his only endorsement of a candidate to John Garamendi. They worked together to negotiate the regulations for climate control at Kyoto and Gore (the spokesperson on global warming) knows this man's work.
Speak Up! Call your legislators. Make your voices heard. Take back your rights to the kind of fair and democratic election the Founding Fathers fought for. Put your money where your mouth is! Every nickel and dime counts when fighting the well funded minions of the Corpacracy. Go to garamendi.org and give from your heart. Give to support a good and honest man who has given from his heart in California, in Washington, DC and in the Peace Corps in Ethiopia. This is a man who deserves to be able to uphold his ethics and ours. This is a man who will fight to save our children's education, our environment, our health care. Show him that you care as much as he does.