NYTimes: Ms. Gillibrand arriving at a farm in Cambridge, N.Y., in April 2007 to meet with residents of the area to discuss a bill meant to protect dairy farmers.
Photo: Nathaniel Brooks for The New York Times
Coach Mom loses a Congresswoman and gains a Senator: Kirsten Gillibrand has been named by New York Governor David Paterson to fill the remaining two years of Hillary Clinton's Senate term.
Some liberals are freaking out because she has the worst record of any New York Congressional representative on gay issues (only 80% positive from the Human Rights Campaign [pdf file]) and supports the right to bear arms. I would point out to my freaked out colleagues that her position on gay rights is the same as one Barack Obama's and that her position on the 2nd Amendment is the same as one Howard Dean's. Chill.
Hilariously, one blog called her "a bizarro version of Sarah Palin: she proudly touts her 100 percent rating from the National Rifle Association", which would only be accurate if Palin had a degree from Dartmouth in Asian Studies or if she was a lawyer. Gillibrand speaks in full sentences and has never claimed foreign policy expertise. Or that she can see Canada from her house.
OK, Gillibrand is not as liberal as I would like. She voted with the Rethugs on FISA and for that reason I didn't give her any money this year. But she is smart, tenacious and learns on the job. She sat on the Agriculture Committee in the House and impressed all the farmers in Delaware County by learning about the issues important to them. I hope as Senator she will continue her "Sunshine" policy and list all of her meetings on her website. And I hope to meet her at the Delaware County Fair this summer. I hope we're still on her dance card now that she represents the whole state of New York.