Sponsored by:

vt.Buzz ~ a political blog

Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen



Former lawmaker is ill

Former Rep. Michael Flaherty, a Blue Dog Democrat from South Burlington who helped temper the liberal agenda in the late 1990s, is struggling with cancer.

It was the late Peter Freyne who dubbed Flaherty and his Chittenden County pals "the Blue Dogs." Once ignored as lawmakers more interested in golf than government, the group demonstrated their political punch in 1999 when they forced consideration of an income tax cut.

The original Blue Dogs included Jim McNamara and Hank Gretkowski of Burlington, Michael Vinton of Colchester and Rene Blanchard of Essex.

In an interview in 1999, Flaherty explained the groups' philosophy. "We're pretty laid-back and have a lot of fun," he said, flashing his trademark smile. "But you shouldn't take that to mean we don't take being lawmakers seriously. We take it very seriously."

All five have left the Legislature. Flaherty, Gretkowski and Blanchard retired in 2000. The pals have remained close, said Paula Flaherty. Now the Blue Dogs gather at her husband's bedside. Hopefully, they are sharing some stories and laughs and Mike is giving them one of those mile-wide grins.

-- Nancy Remsen

Those were democrats that were concerned about the average working Vermonter and not the current elitists that only care about how much money they can tax and spend for their special interests, the NEA, radical "gay" rights activists, and the environmental fascists. Vermont is a much poorer place with the latter.
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Bring back the Blue Dogs!
The blue dog democrats are long gone. They have been replaced by the yapping little chihuahuas.
Post a Comment

<< Home

Recent Posts

Recent Comments


June 2006   July 2006   August 2006   September 2006   October 2006   November 2006   December 2006   January 2007   February 2007   March 2007   April 2007   May 2007   June 2007   July 2007   August 2007   September 2007   October 2007   November 2007   December 2007   January 2008   February 2008   March 2008   April 2008   May 2008   June 2008   July 2008   August 2008   September 2008   October 2008   November 2008   December 2008   January 2009   February 2009   March 2009   April 2009   May 2009   June 2009   July 2009   August 2009   September 2009   October 2009   November 2009   December 2009   January 2010   February 2010   March 2010   April 2010