Sunday, August 10, 2008

August 10, 2008

Good evening,

And I hope each and every one of you has enjoyed the weekend's activities.

Politically speaking, time grows short for candidates in the various Primary races. One week from Tuesday, you the Voter, will make the decision to ensure my political future and allow me to continue to represent you.If you, the reader, have any inkling of lending a hand or a voice, now would be the time to do so!

A newspaper reporter from Cheyenne called this past week and wanted a comment on a legislative proposal by one of the current incumbents concerning proper medical care for veterans at the V.A in Cheyenne. While the concept sounded good, it brought to mind a common slippery political technique that all of us need to be on the lookout for and against.

It's the kind of a deal where an elected official who is not really 'green' at all will sponsor one positive bill related to the environment, and use that as an example of their commitment to the environment. While in reality, their real political agenda is to promote irresponsible development of the natural resources.

So it may be that John Barrasso's bill concerning medical care for vets is a good thing. The real question is what about his record on the issue since his appointment?

I know that he voted against limiting the length of the tour of duty that our active military serves in Iraq. Some time back, the military lengthened the tours of Army soldiers from 12 months to 15 months. There was an amendment to once again make a 12 month tour the standard. Considering that our troops rotate through Iraq on a frequent basis, some have been there 3 or 4 or 5 times, it seemed to me a shorter tour would be better. When soldiers are living under constant battle conditions for extended periods, in addition to leaving children, wives and families behind, it is a tremendous strain that further impacts soldier’s physical, emotional and mental health.

Another related issue that has dropped from view is that of medical care at the various medical facilities such as Walter Reed Hospital. You may recall there was a big dustup a couple of years ago about substandard care, but now we don't hear a thing. Is it possible that all is well on that front? Possible perhaps, but I do not believe that reform really occurs in cases such as these without sustained pressure from elected officials. If our appointed incumbent was really and truly concerned about the plight of soldiers in the military health care system, he would be all over that on a constant basis.

That is it for tonight

One more Underdog Update before the big day!


Saturday, August 9, 2008

Respect for Veterans

Greetings fellow Wyomingites!
Yesterday I spoke with a newspaper reporter about a bill that incumbent John Barrasso is touting as proof of his commitment to the care and concern of combat veterans. The bill had to do with ensuring prompt medical care for the wounded vets at the V.A. Center in Cheyenne, and may well be a good thing. The devil is always in the details.
But what strikes me is the overall plan behind some of these pronouncements. Politicians will run a flag up the flagpole that is positive in nature, while many parts of the rest of their record are questionable.
For example, John Barrasso voted against a proposal to limit the time of a tour of duty in Iraq. The amendment would have reduced the tour for Army soldiers from 15 months to 12 months, under the theory that the stress of combat duty and overseas tours could be moderated by a shorter stint. Keeping in mind that our soldiers are serving numerous tours as time goes by. It's not like Vietnam where folks served one tour and were out. I have read that some soldiers are on their 4th tour. That is tough on family life.
Another angle is that there has been an ongoing issue with the quality of military medical care in general. There was a dust up about it a while back, but have reforms really been implemented? Those type of systemic problems take many years to really flush out of a system, and I suspect that has not happened to any significant degree in this case.
Thanks for reading.

Friday, August 8, 2008

On the Immigration Front

Good Morning!
And here is a blog on an issue that a fine Wyoming voter is interested in hearing more about.
The immigration issue is on many voters list of important items this election, and rightfully so. Like so many other issues, there are a lot of angles to be considered.
Historically, we are a nation of immigrants, although it is true that most of them came legally. Of course the laws regarding immigration have changed over the years as well, the USA has accepted many more in the past than it does now.
I'm sure I have read that at one point in our history, after a large wave of immigrants from Germany came over, that fully 30% of the U.S. population spoke German as their first language. If true, that is an astounding statistic.And something to keep in mind.
I do believe that we have to control our borders, all of them, because that is one of the basic responsibilities of a national government. It's a darn good thing there are not all that many actual terrorists trying to get into the United States, because with the Southern border situation they certainly could have gained entry by now.
There are an estimated 12 to 15 million illegal residents of the U.S. currently. We are not going to be able to deport them, that is just the fact of the matter. There should be a reasonable and prompt path to citizenship for those folks. We would be much better off as a nation to have them in the fold legally. And it would be better for them as well.
If they were legal, they would be paying all taxes and otherwise participating in our society. As it is now, they have to live the life of a semi-fugitive.
There also should be a reasonable guest worker program so that workers could come to our country to work for a while, and then go back home after the work runs out. Right now, they are afraid to go back because of the increased security at the border.
For many years, the border with Mexico was intentionally left porous. Corporations needed the workers for cheap labor, the workers needed to support their families and there was no work back home. These folks may have broken the official law of the land, but for the most part they are not criminals.
As a final thought, we need to think about our own futures for a minute. Our governmental insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicare depend on young workers paying in for the solvency of the programs. Therefore we need to consider that by adding all of those illegal workers to the roles of legitimate taxpayers, we are actually helping ourselves.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Wyoming Tough versus Wyoming Smart

Good morning Wyooooooooming!
The issue of money in politics is huge, no positive change can come without a reform of the way that money controls the debate.
Wyoming Democrats need to be smart about the way we go about addressing our inherent and long lasting deficit in this area.
We will never be able to equal the fundraising efforts of the majority party, that is a given. So, if we can't compete on their playing field, we must change the field.
The way to change the field is to reject special interest money completely, and proceed with a voluntary limit on individual contributions. I use the limit of $100.00 because almost any Wyoming citizen who wants to achieve the maximum limit can do so. No citizen, no matter how wealthy, can have more than $100.00 worth of influence.
Wyodems used to run successful statewide races for under $100,000. That should be the standard we strive for, along with new tactics and strategies. In that way we will have a template and a process for willing candidates to buy into, and more people would be willing to make a statewide race.
It is ignorant and shortsighted to try to compete with the majority party on their own terms. Candidaes who do so will rarely succeed.
We as Wyodems must be smarter.

Friday, August 1, 2008

A Separate Identity for the Wyodems

Good morning Casper and Wyoming,
I attended the local meeting of the Natrona County Democratic Party (NCDP) last night, and came away with a couple of thoughts, neither of them new,
The first thought is that we are really lacking in young people and young participation. The average age of the local Dems who attended was somewhere close! Yea, that's it. Nothing against mature people of course, but the youth is the future, and right now the NCDP is lacking a future.
The actual political fountain of youth in this area is the Casper City Council. After the new appointee, Joel Burdess, get sworn in this month, we will have 4 Councilpeople who are right around the age of thirty. That's a darn good thing.
The other thought was on the issue of special interest money in politics. I advanced the notion that the best way to create a separate identity for the Wyodem organization was to completely repudiate special interest money, and advertize the fact to high heaven. The ocean of special interest money is corrupting our entire system.
This thought went over fairly well, except for those who have a direct connection to people oriented special interest money, teachers and public employees and unions. Some of them seemed to take my political suggestion as a personal insult, as if a negative comment about the system that they are an active participant of, was directed directly at them.
That is unfortunate. All of us need to have the ability to take a step back and have an objective opinion of all things political. The amount of money that comes from 'people PAC's' is tiny compared to the money that comes from 'corporate PAC's'. The Wyodem organization would be much better off to just take a big breath, take the big leap, and figure out how to succeed with a new way of doing things.
That's all for now. It's time to go do that 'work' thing again.
Candidate Keith

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Money Ain't Everything!

Good Morning Wyoming!
    A most interesting piece of political news from our great neighbor to the north, the state of Montana, has come to my attention.
    In a three way race for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. House seat, a candidate by the name of John Driscoll won by a pretty hefty margin. Of course I do not recall the exact numbers, being somewhat detail impaired, but it was something like 70,000 to 59,000 to 30,000.
    Their Primary Election is the first part of June, and so this is not exactly breaking news, The real news is that a guy by the name of John Driscoll won the race without spending ANY MONEY. At least that is what the campaign video said. They had to spend a little I would think, at least the filing fee and such.
    That is amazing news really! To think that a candidate from a major party could win a statewide primary race without spending money is revolutionary, is it not?
    It gives me some encouragement for my race. For twenty years I have been practicing my own version of campaign finance reform. I accept no money from special interest groups, and I only accept a maximum of $100.00 from any one person.
    It now appears that I am actually a moderate in this area!
    This is an area where the difference between conventional politics and progressive politics is stark. Conventional politicians from both parties yak about how Congress should do this and that to reform the campaign finance laws, but what are the chances of that ever happening anytime soon? Candidates like myself, and John Driscoll from Montana, look at the issue from the grassroots up, and take action.
    We just do what we think is right, and work to succeed with our self-imposed limitations, in the hopes that the electorate will take notice and respond in a positive way.
    It could work in my race as well!
    If you are reading this, and want to help make my campaign a success, go to and donate.
Thank you Wyoming!

Monday, July 28, 2008

July 27, 2008


Greetings and good evening!

Ever since I ran for office in 1986, my campaigns have been funded by small contributions from individuals. I accept no money from special interests (Political Action Committees), and I only accept a maximum of $100.00 per person. This is not the usual approach!

Political Action Committee (PAC) money is a corrupting influence on the entire political system in this country. There are limits on individual contributions, but not on PAC money. If you want to see a disgusting example of how conventional politicians fund their campaigns, go to the list of the PAC contributors to John Barrasso's current campaign. There are about 500 individual donations from a long list of industries that want to have John Barrasso on the line for many votes over the next 4 years. Check it out:

That adds up to more than 1 million dollars, and the campaign season has not yet really started! Disgusting is one word for it, but of course there are many others.

Then of course there are individual contributions as well. Go to:

There are 624 individuals, many from out of state, that have given thus far to John Barrasso, and all of that is fine. The fact that captured my attention is that most of the donations are for $1000.00 and up!

I have self
-imposed my unilateral campaign finance reform system for a number of reasons. The main reason being that the source of the money that funds campaigns has influence on that candidate. I never want to be in the position of having a struggling thought pass through my mind that my vote on an issue that I believe impacts people like you, could also end up impacting my ability to raise money and garner re-election.

If an industry has given some enormous sum of money to a candidate, $100,000 would not be uncommon, then you can bet that when an issue that impacts both industry and the people comes to a vote, there will be a choice that has to be made. We'll take a look at some of the bills that Mr. Barrasso has voted on in my next Underdog Update!

Interesting Note: My opponent in the Primary Election race has criticized Senator John Barrasso for being in the pocket of special interests, and rightfully so.

Unfortunately, "Conflict" Nick is doing the same dirty deed!
Go to:

Such a strategy does not say much for my opponent's political intelligence. Wyoming voters will not respect a politician who criticizes politicians who take special intest money while doing the same thing. That dog will not hunt!

Keith Goodenough, your WY Candidate for US Senate

Welcome to my campaign


Campaign contributions are welcome. In keeping with my longstanding policy, I accept a maximum of $100 from any individual. I do not accept donations from Political Action Committees (PACs).

If you would like to donate, mail to:
Goodenough for Wyoming
PO Box 1852
Casper WYO 82602

E-mail me

Wyoming Constitution...Article 1, Section 1: All power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their peace, safety and happiness; for the advancement of these ends they have at all times an inalienable and indefeasible right to alter, reform or abolish the government in such manner as they may think proper.