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Category — Peter Shumlin

Where is Cassandra Gekas?

WCAX Reports VPIRG fired Cassandra Gekas, and her former boss Paul Burns freaked out and wrote an email saying she’s “completely unprepared” to run for lieutenant governor.

Hmm…I think she might win.

Related Links:

Health care advocate Gekas sets sights on lieutenant governor office (VT Digger)

oh… and Paul Heintz writing for Seven Days covered this too for “Fair Game” although he got one thing wrong saying that in the Digger story she said she quit.  I didn’t read that in there.  The Digger story says

Paul Burns, executive director of the Vermont Public Interest Research Group, said he did not know Gekas had plans to run for lieutenant governor. Now that she is running for office, she has cut ties with VPIRG.

Burns said because the group is a nonpartisan organization, she could not work for VPIRG and run for office. Similarly, he said, the group does not endorse particular candidates.

Where in that did Paul Heintz read that she said she quit? And why is the column still called “Fair Game?” Isn’t that what Shay Totten came up with when Peter Freyne died? Heintz should give the Seven Days political column a new name… like “Heintz Site” or some other silly Seven Days-type pun.

Heintz also posted the full freak-out email from VPIRG (Vermont Public Interest Research Group) executive director  Paul Burns at Blurt.  How does the executive director of anything decide to click send on such a stupid email?

And the Freep’s VtBuzz blog strongly infers Gekas is related to  former congressman George Gekas of Pennsylvania.  I wonder if he’s her father.

June 28, 2012   13 Comments

Jean O’Sullivan to fill Larson’s House seat

November 6, 2011   Comments Off

Filling the Seat

My four year daugter “Yana” took on Mark Larson in an exciting and educational game of fine people and any of them would do a good job.  I know and like all three of them, so it would be hard for me to pick.  Luckily that’s not my job.  What’s clear is the math for this race is easy.  The deciding tally will be one to zero to zero, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun with a non-scientific poll right now.

We will run the poll on the honor system.  I don’t care how many times you vote in it, but please only do so if you reside in Chittenden 3-2, ok?  Let’s go…

Left to Right: Berezniak, George and O’Sullivan

Whom would you choose to represent the Chittenden 3-2 District in the Vermont Legislature?
David Berezniak, current Ward 2 City Councilor
Carmen George, former Ward 7 City Councilor
Jean O’Sullivan, former Ward 7 City Councilor
Free polls from

October 14, 2011   1 Comment

BurlingtonPol Eye-Spy II

Caught on film!
 Matthew “Matty” Tanner and Peter “Shummy” Shumlin!

(Photo by Bianca Slota)

Related: BurlingtonPol Eye-Spy I

February 8, 2011   Comments Off

Interview with the Mayor

Friday was the first time I’ve been in the mayor’s office in almost exactly 20 years. Twenty years ago around this time in January I went there to tell Peter Clavelle I was running against him in his first bid for re-election. He suggested I run for the school board instead. I probably should have listened to him. All well.

I’ve finished transcribing my interview with mayor Kiss. My thanks to him for for taking the time to speak with me on the record, and my thanks to you for reading Visit often!

Click here to read 01.14.11 Interview with mayor Bob Kiss.

January 17, 2011   19 Comments

General Apologies

I just want to say I’m sorry to everyone I have mischaractarized, taken off guard, rubbed the wrong way, insulted, offended and pissed off recently.  I’m sure I was just trying to be honest and/or do the right thing.  Please forgive me.

December 28, 2010   2 Comments

Challenges For Chump Change

And, oh yes. I received a letter from Peter Shumlin. It’s the first time he’s talked to me since he stopped following me on Twitter. ‘Course this letter ain’t personal to me, but it does say “Dear School Member…”

The text of the letter is below the row of stars to follow. In it Peter says we have to cut about 47 million dollars over two years and we might have 19 million dollars to ease the pain a bit, depending on the legislature (which has yet to elect him).

Burlington is not going to make its target goal of saving 1.2 million in the next budget. Our demographics won’t allow it. Our enrollments are increasing while while those in other Vermont school districts are deceasing. The Burlington budget is tight as it is. I’m not saying there aren’t savings to be found. I’m sure there are. Just not 1.2 million by next Tuesday. Sorry.

The power to set our school budget belongs to the people of Burlington, not to Montpelier. I’m not going to vote to decimate our academic program. I will however try to find some real savings during the regular budget process coming up after the school board deals with Montpelier’s ‘challenge’ on December 14.

December 1, 2010

Dear School Board Member,

Thank you for your hard work to maintain the quality of our public schools and contain costs. I am deeply grateful for your commitment to Vermont’s children. It is due, in large part, to your hard work that our students have access to one of the best education systems in the country. As we both understand well, our state’s economic success and future relies on this quality. In addition, your work to keep FY2011 spending at a level rate is critical and greatly appreciated by all Vermonters.

Given the uncertainty around achieving budget reduction targets and allowing for the Legislature to be involved with the determination of how to best allocate the additional $19 million in one-time funds, it seems prudent to work on the expectation of maintaining the current tax rates for 2012 that the acting tax commissioner has recently recommended.

I know that this year the task before you is even more daunting as you have been asked to meet Act 146’s directive of reducing education spending by $23.2 million in FY2012. I appreciate your understanding of the need to meet this goal and also understand that it may take a little longer to make the kinds of changes necessary to achieve the savings targets. I remain supportive of using the $19 million in additional one-time federal funds as bridge financing over one or two years to accomplish the necessary cost savings. I look forward to working with the legislature to develop a specific plan in this regard. I do not support using the one-time federal funds for anything other than supporting our schools or lowering property taxes.

Thank you again for your hard work and dedication to our state.

Governor-elect Peter Shumlin

December 5, 2010   4 Comments

Shumlin Elected Governor

Shumlin Defeats Dubie…

Poopsie endorsement seen as key factor in narrow win…

Breaking News…

November 3, 2010   1 Comment

Picks and Predications Election Day 2010

It’s a serious form of exhibitionism to want to tell people who your voting for, but based on this blog’s traffic stats, I’m guessing I find at least 200 voyeurs willing to accommodate me on election day.

I live in Chittenden 3-2 so I’m just going to tick off who I plan on voting for by looking at the sample ballot on the City’s website.

*Constitutional Amendment to let folks register to vote at 17 if they will be 18 by the time the general election rolls around: Yeah, I guess. Hey if that means you turn 17 in January like I did you can vote on Town Meeting in March even before turning 18? Hmmm. I don’t know anymore. Maybe I won’t vote on this.

*For Congress Pick: Peter Welch Prediction: Peter Welch
*For Governor: Pick: Peter Shumlin Prediction: Peter Shumlin
*For Lieutenant Governor: Pick: Steve Howard Prediction: Phil Scott
*For State Treasurer: Pick: Jeb Spaulding Prediction: Jeb Spaulding
*For Secretary of State: Pick: Jim Condos Prediction: Jim Condos
*For Auditor of Accounts: Pick: Doug Hoffer Prediction: Doug Hoffer
*For Attorney General: Pick: William Sorrell Prediction: William Sorrell
*For State Senate: Picks: Philip Baruth and Andy Montroll Prediction: They both win.
*For State Representaive: Pick: Angela Chagnon Prediction: Mark Larson
*For Probate Judge: Skip it.
*For Assistant Judge: Skip it.
*For State’s Attorney: Pick: TJ Donovan Prediction: TJ Donovan
*For Sherriff: Skip it.
*For High Bailiff: Skip it.
*For Justice of the Peace: Picks: Ed Adrian, Terry Bailey, Angela Chagnon, Paul Decelles, Vince Dober, Thom Fleury, Jim Flint, Carmen George, Maggie Gunderson, Selene Hoffer-Shall, Michelle Lefokowitz and Kurt Wright. Prediction: Terry Bailey wins on the strength of this blog’s preceding post.

*Ward Three Special City Council Seat: Vince Brennan has probably already won.  His absence will be felt on the school board.  Good luck on the council Vince!

November 2, 2010   3 Comments

Shumlin vs. Dubie

I’m going to give you a very concise analysis of the gubernatorial race at this stage of the game on 10.25.10.  I say “Shumlin vs. Dubie” rather than vise versa because I think despite whatever Nate Silver and The Times say about percentages of likely victory, in reality in Vermont Dubie is much more well known than Shumlin and he is the heir apparent.  Status quo equals Dubie wins.  Shumlin has to go the extra mile to pull it out.  He has to give us a compelling reason to buck what gravity would conclude about the more recognized name “Dubie.”  At this point I’d advise Peter and Alexandra to wrap up their courtship with women and start showing us the money.  We’re not going to elect the lessor known rich guy over Jet Pilot High unless we think he might share some secret that will make us all rich.   Spend the money to do a detailed job-creation-plan infomercial.  Something.  Go back and hammer on the high-tech-ecobiz, enviro-biz, agra-biz, solar panels and windmills thing.  While it can be great to take a firm position on a particular issue, you can’t bet the works on being pro-choice, or on the Democratic Party- you know- or Bernie who supports you but said he likes your opponent.  If you really want to be governor, start promising jobs and economic growth like crazy.  Now.

Also- I will sell the top banner of this blog thru Nov. 2 to whichever gubernatorial candidate paypals  $100 first.  Don’t miss your chance to advertise on Burlington’s most effective political website…

Update- four minutes later- Joe Biden is coming to stump for Shumlin… Perfect.  Use the event to hammer home a message about jobs and the economy (JOBS AND THE ECONOMY (STUPID)!).  The news will play that.


Picks and Predications Election Day 2010

October 25, 2010   Comments Off