[UPDATED] Tea Party Activist Working With Firedoglake’s Hamsher on HCR Whip Count

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010 at 3:57 pm

[UPDATE: This post was originally titled "Tea Partiers Working With Firedoglake on HCR Whip Count." After I posted it, Kathryn Serkes e-mailed me to say that she didn't mean to imply that Firedoglake's Jane Hamsher used the phrase "union thuggery. Serkes also disputed my description of her as a "Tea Partier," but I really used that because this was a Tea Party rally, and she was an organizer of it. She also argued that there was a difference between working with Hamsher and working "with Firedoglake." I agree, and none of the links below are meant to imply that other FDL bloggers have any connection to Tea Parties.]

I spoke to Kathryn A. Serkes of the Doctor Patient Medical Association at this morning’s rally against the health care bill, after Serkes had addressed the smallish crowd.

“I’m in contact with folks on the progressive side,” said Serkes. “They’re saying right now that Pelosi’s almost there with the votes. What they’re saying is that there’s some serious arm-twisting — their words were union thuggery. One progressive source told me that there was serious union thuggery this weekend, targeting Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.).”

The source, she said, was Jane Hamsher of Firedoglake, a liberal blog that’s also paid for polls in some Democratic districts asking voters whether “aye” votes on health care reform would help or hurt their re-election chances. “She said that they’re very close — [liberal blogs] are better at keeping a tab on it. And I think Pelosi’s very close. I think we’re right at the edge.”

Hamsher did not respond to an email from TWI, but denied much of this in a post at FDL.

Follow David Weigel on Twitter


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32 Comments

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Pingback posted March 16, 2010 @ 9:00 pm

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edgery
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:12 pm

Did you verify this with Jane Hamsher or even ask? Since when do you take the word of the RWNJs? Here you say that one teapartier has been “in touch” with progressives, and from that you extrapolate “working with.” According to Jane herself, she was NOT named by Serkes–YOU named her and got no confirmation. She also denies using the words “union thuggery.” But hey, why go with real journalism when sensationalism is so much more … Fox-like.

And by the by, Jane is not alone in opposing health care (i.e., insurance) reform on the backs of women. if the Nelson language restricting abortion coverage isn't dropped, why shouldn't Pro-Choice Democrats who pledged to their constituents they would not vote for increased curtailment of women's rights stand by their word? Those are the Democrats being strong-armed. Blue Dogs and anti-women's rights Dems like Stupak are being courted and asked “what can we give you?” Back-assward politics, IMO.


dave
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:24 pm

Hey Dave – Ms. Hamsher says you are completely and totally full of shit. She says every word you've printed here is a load of bullshit. She says YOU'RE LYING. Got anything to back it up? Or should we just ask when you'll print the retraction?


Don
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:25 pm

Dave is reporting what Serkes said, not what Jane said. There would be no reason for him to ask Jane what Serkes said. Perhaps in a follow-up he report that Jane has denied being the source but that doesn't change the facts reported above, to wit Serkes claimed her source was Jane.


bbatsell
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:30 pm

I especially like how you waited until he'd already backed it up with a transcript to post this verbal diarrhea.


Lawnguylander
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:34 pm

Yeah, well, he has to protect his Messiah. Whatever “Ms. Hamsher says” is gospel.


JenJen
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:37 pm

You know, that was my favorite part, too.


sanelib
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:37 pm

Hamsher is a menace to 30 million uninsured people, and you're damn right she's with the teabaggers.

Now cue all her brain dead groupies coming over here to feast on your flesh….3…..2…..1


edgery
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:44 pm

Actually, no. When one person is saying what another one said, it is actually *good* journalism to check with the other person. AND to give that other person time to respond before sending the report out to the world (via TWI and Twitter). He sent Jane an email at 3:41, went public at 3:57, and didn't tell Jane he was on any kind of deadline or “going to press” in 15 minutes. His email to Jane was nothing more than cya, with no intention of giving her any opportunity to respond or rebut.

And as I pointed out, he made “in contact with” mean “working with” – which was bad enough. When Dave makes the claims he did, and they are definitely fighting claims in the progressive community as he knows and intended them to be, then the burden is on Dave to get it right. He didn't, and in an almost-retraction–in another post rather to the original one here, he admits it.


JenJen
Comment posted March 16, 2010 @ 10:46 pm

“.. but that doesn't change the facts reported above, to wit Serkes claimed her source was Jane.”

Bingo.


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CestWhat
Comment posted March 17, 2010 @ 5:43 am

The fact that Jane Hamsher is throwing a zillion and one different versions shows she's stuck.

First off, the whole thing is Jane Hamsher is upset for her connection to Kathryn Serkers, an organizer of an anti-HRC Tea Party. Yet she has about all these quotes from this women in her post while maintaining “I only know her from appearances on MSNBC.” She knows her well enough to protect her although she mispelled her name in her post.

Plus Hamsher is claiming that these where off hand remarks. Even Serkers admits she saw Dave Weigel interviewing him and she approached him. I don't think Weigel was there to talk about the weather. Listen to the audio, she making a point that she hopes will be quoted about progressive interest groups so being opposed to HRC Bill and was she talks about them, Weigel only asks a natural follow-up. Hamsher is claiming that Serkers didn't know she was being recorded. One, that doesn't make her statements disappear. Two, I very much doubt Weigel has the budget for secret recording devices. Considering how clear the recording it, seems odd (or bullshit) that it's was “secretly” recorded.

Also odd how Hamsher immediately believes Serkers without first asking Weigel nor does she have a second source. Weigel interviewed several people, nobody is claiming they were secretly recorded.

Hamsher is not that victim of some vast plot by Weigel under the control of Rahm Emanuel. Whenever I read that, it's more telling them anything that she has no leg to stand on here. She's not even addressing the issue.

Hamsher's attacks are about all process of the reporting or vilifying Weigel himself. Wow, maybe Hamsher is more like Tea Party folks then I originally thought.


Morning Healthcare Roundup: Here’s What’s Going On Right Now | Finance Blog
Pingback posted March 17, 2010 @ 7:31 am

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Pingback posted March 17, 2010 @ 9:33 am

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Pingback posted March 18, 2010 @ 10:47 am

[...] Dave Weigel at The Washington Independent: UPDATE: This post was originally titled “Tea Partiers Working With Firedoglake on HCR Whip Count.” After I posted it, Kathryn Serkes e-mailed me to say that she didn’t mean to imply that Firedoglake’s Jane Hamsher used the phrase “union thuggery. Serkes also disputed my description of her as a “Tea Partier,” but I really used that because this was a Tea Party rally, and she was an organizer of it. She also argued that there was a difference between working with Hamsher and working “with Firedoglake.” I agree, and none of the links below are meant to imply that other FDL bloggers have any connection to Tea Parties.] [...]


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