Beltway Happenings
October 2, 2006--Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) spoke at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute's Public Policy Conference.  Sen. Dodd learned Spanish as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic from 1966-68.
Sen. Dodd posed for a photo with CHCI Board Chair Congresswoman Grace Napolitano (CA-38), NEA President Reg Weaver, Congressman Rubén Hinojosa (TX-15), and unidentified.
Speaking to reporters after his speech Dodd answered several questions about his priorities if Democrats were to gain a majority in the Senate.  He also responded to questions about the possibility of a presidential run ("I haven't made that decision yet.  Obviously I'm exploring the possibility.") and about how he would counteract the image of a Northeastern liberal if he were to get in the race:
Well first of all labels don't mean much to me; I don't think it means much to most people.  It's kind of an inside Washington discussion.  And people don't lose elections because of geography, they lose elections because they don't connect with people or they don't have a program that people can relate to or they don't have a personality people can relate to.  It's usually a shorthand way of saying people didn't connect.  I don't think Southerners ought to be rejected because Al Gore and Jimmy Carter didn't get elected or re-elected.  So it's not about geography; it's about whether or not people think you know who they are.  Not who the candidate is, but should the candidate know who the voter is, and that's the most important issue.
Sen. Chris Dodd
Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute

Copyright © 2006  Eric M. Appleman/Democracy in Action