Some of you’ve heard me affectionately refer to the Blue Jersey community as “the Blogsteins.” Dunno where it came from, but it’s a little easier to say than “the Blue Jersey community.” You’re reading this, so chances are you’re a Blogstein.
This rule-of-thumb can apply to front pagers, alums ( JRBlogstein, anyone?) and diarists alike (Steven Goldstein-Blogstein, Dennis McBlogstein, et al.) Congressman Rob Andrews is definitely a Blogstein. I am biased of course. But I wanted to take a minute to explain why.
I discoved the Jersey blogosphere about three years ago, a bit about our state’s smoking ban.
Since then there’ve been twists and turns + some real progressive victories (and demi-victories) along the way. All the while the struggle for legitimacy — as bloggers in an increasingly blog friendly world –was made easier by politicians like Rob Andrews giving a little boost.
(Frankly we’re lucky in New Jersey since many of our legislators have been generous with their time and access. I dare say none more so than Rob Andrews, especially back in the beginning.)
Some people write letters to their Congressman. The Blogsteins do podcasts with ’em!
It’s satisfying when Governors and Congressmen grant access, but this is a little deeper than that: becoming a Blogstein meant amplifying my liberal voice and ensuing more agency to fight for ending the death penalty (check); family leave insurance (check) and gay marriage (stay tuned.) It’s all because of blogging. Who knew? I was more than just a guy at a protest with a sign.
And whenever I reached out, Rob Andrews was around to talk about stuff like Iraq to GLBT rights. Everything was on the table. And in retrospect that access lent some legitimacy to what I was trying to get done over at Casa Blogstein.
New Jersey votes June 3
Fast forward to April 2oo8 when Rob Andrews announced his run for US Senate. One of the first decisions the campaign made was to embrace New Media like blogging, vlogging and (to a lesser extent) facebook and Myspace. Suddenly the Andrews for US Senate campaign became a perfect place for a Blogstein or two.