Archive for the ‘John McCain’ Category
Tim Carney’s article about how the presidential candidates did at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference reaffirms my beliefs. First, it reaffirms that Jeb Bush is a frontrunner only because of his fundraising operation and his name recognition. Second, it reaffirms my belief that this race isn’t about who wins ‘the establishment primary’ vs. who wins ‘the movement primary’. Third, it reaffirms my belief that candidates like Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, Rand Paul, Chris Christie and Donald Trump are sideshows and don’t have a chance at winning the nomination. Finally, it reaffirms my belief that I’ve had from the start that Scott Walker is still the frontrunner.
OKLAHOMA CITY — The annual Southern Republican Leadership Conference provided a glimpse into the state of the Republican base and the presidential field. The conference revealed a Republican base that is (1) broadly happy with the crowded and conservative field, (2) still smitten with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, and (3) unimpressed and uninterested in Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
Senate chaos over the Patriot Act kept the four senators who are running from making it, dampening the mood a bit. The candidates running a second time — Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, and Mike Huckabee — do not excite the conservative base.
What’s interesting is Carney’s statement that the activists are “still smitten with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.” Marco Rubio has climbed to frontrunner status on Special Report’s Candidate Casino segment because he’s excellent on foreign policy and he’s got a terrific life story to tell. Jeb Bush is accorded top tier status for the reasons I’ve stated above. Scott Walker still gets strong support but there’s little buzz about him.
Perhaps that’s because he’s just the guy everyone quietly likes? This part is interesting:
Straw Poll: The straw poll results mostly reflected Scott Walker’s popularity, and the apprehension the Republican base has for Jeb Bush and Chris Christie, the perceived establishment moderates in the field.
1) Dr. Ben Carson won the straw poll handily, thanks to his having the biggest organized effort. His campaign bought a booth and bought 100 tickets, to allow supporters to attend for free. Many of these supporters came in from out of state. All told, Carson won about 240 votes.
2) The biggest winner may have been Wisconsin Gov. Walker, who finished a close second, with about 200 votes. He had no organized effort to win the straw poll, but he still won the most votes among Oklahomans in the crowd. His Friday afternoon speech was spot-on and well delivered. His strong showing reflects that the good will Walker garnered through his fights in Madison, Wis., sill buoy him, even after other conservative stars have entered the race.
Dr. Carson showed that he’s put together an organization. Still, what’s impressive is that Gov. Walker didn’t bring his organizers to the event and still was competitive. This might be more impressive, though:
3) What recommends Walker most to Republican voters is his successful battles with powerful labor unions, the media, and the Wisconsin Democratic Party. Walker made these battles — including his recall election victory — the focus of his talk.
4) Walker was able to tick off a long list of legislative accomplishments, touching on all the major conservative policy priorities: cutting spending, cutting taxes, bringing the bureaucracy to heel, defunding Planned Parenthood, expanding gun rights, passing right to work, requiring photo ID for voters and so on.
5) Walker cast his political and policy wins as populist victories over powerful insiders. He described his fight against the government unions as “taking power out of the hands the big-government special interests” and putting it in the hands of ordinary people.
6) Walker closed with a pointed critique of his rivals. He said many Washington politicians are good at picking fights, but they don’t win — a clear reference to Cruz’s failed Obamacare shutdown, and Marco Rubio and Paul’s lack of a record. Alternatively, many Republicans, Walker said, are good at winning races, but they never fight for important, tough things — presumably referring to Christie and Bush.
In other words, he’s a confident leader with a lengthy list of conservative accomplishments who isn’t afraid to pick a fight. Simply put, he’s everything McCain, Romney, Huckabee and Santorum weren’t and Jeb Bush isn’t.
Anyone who watched Rand Paul’s interview with Megyn Kelly last night saw Sen. Paul’s less-than-elegant side:
Simply put, Sen. Paul was combative, argumentative and vague. He was argumentative when Kelly pressed him for a definition of who he meant when he talked about neocons. By comparison, Sen. Paul said that Charles Krauthammer was “just wrong” in his opinion about Sen. Paul. Finally, Sen. Paul refused to even say what the ‘neocon’ philosophy consisted of. The only thing Sen. Paul said about neocons was that Sen. McCain “is always right and wants to have troops in 15 countries…”
That’s just the tip of the iceberg. When Kelly showed clips of Paul criticizing Savannah Guthrie, telling her how to conduct an interview, Sen. Paul looked petulant and thin-skinned. While there’s no denying the fact that Sen. Paul is more open-minded than President Obama, there’s no denying the fact that he doesn’t like getting challenged, either.
Right after Kelly’s interview with Sen. Paul, she interviewed Dana Perino, who had some great advice for Sen. Paul. Ms. Perino said he should put the tapes in of his interview with Savannah Guthrie and the CNBC anchor where his thin skin showed the most. Ms. Perino said that his wife could point out things that he isn’t seeing and offer him an opinion of what comes across through a woman’s eyes. Perino wasn’t harshly critical. She simply offered constructive criticism.
Sen. Paul’s other ‘skin’ problem that showed during his interview was his constant insistence that he was the only Republican who fought against bombing Libya. He wasn’t. I’m hard-pressed to think of a single Republican who thought invading Libya was a good idea. Sen. Paul insisted that he was right about Syria and ISIS and that only a matter of degrees separated Republicans from President Obama.
That’s warped thinking. President Obama didn’t want to take any action. That’s because he’s a pacifist as is Sen. Paul. That’s what Sen. Paul meant when he said that he didn’t support arming the Free Syrian Army. Sen. Paul didn’t think ISIS was that big of a threat until after they beheaded the reporters. Then his attitude changed. That’s what happened with President Obama. It sounds like Sen. Paul is more like President Obama than the neocons supposedly are.
Tonight, Charles Krauthammer will be part of the Special Report All-Star Panel, along with Judge Napolitano and Juan Williams. It’ll be interesting to see if Bret Baier gives Charles the opportunity to defend himself against Sen. Paul’s charges. If it doesn’t happen there, it’ll happen somewhere. That’s something Sen. Paul should fear because he’s a novelty item. He can’t afford taking a credibility hit from a respected conservative like Krauthammer.
If Sen. Paul doesn’t get control of himself, he won’t last long enough to be a flavor-of-the-month candidate. He’ll be able to stay in the race. It’s just that he’ll be treated like a pariah if he’s stripped of his credibility.
This morning’s biggest political headline is Ted Cruz’s announcement that he’s running for president. Right behind that headline, though, is this Washington Post article:
COLUMBIA, S.C. — When Jim Ulmer came to see Scott Walker here last week, he was transfixed. “He’s the little engine that could,” Ulmer said, describing the Wisconsin governor who successfully battled labor unions and has rocketed to the front of the Republican presidential race. “He has guts,” said Ulmer, 52, Republican Party chairman in rural Orangeburg County. “The people of America are looking for another Ronald Reagan, someone we can believe in, someone who will keep freedom safe. Walker could be it.”
That’s the basis for the article’s headline. Still, that isn’t what should give the Bush campaign pause. This should:
Those who turned out in droves to size up Walker during two days of events here said his top rival, Jeb Bush, a former Florida governor and heir to a political dynasty, gives them pause. None mentioned Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), a tea party favorite who will announce his candidacy Monday at Liberty University in Virginia.
This isn’t a prediction but it wouldn’t surprise me if Jeb Bush flopped. The media love Jeb Bush. They’re love that he isn’t willing to rule of raising taxes. They love the fact that he’s a fierce advocate for federal control of education, aka Common Core. Mostly, though, they love him for supporting the Democrats’ immigration bill.
That puts him out of step with Republicans.
It isn’t that Bush “gives them pause.” It’s that Republican activists don’t trust Jeb. They don’t trust Bush because he represents the loser wing of the Republican Party. There isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between Jeb Bush, John McCain and Mitt Romney. They don’t fight for conservatism. Their chief attribute is that they’re supposedly electable.
Contrast that with Scott Walker:
As they see it, he’s a fighter, tenacious and decisive. He fought the unions again and again, and he won each time. They see the 47-year-old governor as a truth-teller, a pure conservative and an energetic, fresh face, as the future.
“He represents everything I want in a president,” Joan Boyce, 61, a school cafeteria worker, said after seeing him speak at a barbecue dinner in Greenville. “He’s refreshing for a change. He feels honest to me; he really does. He doesn’t talk like a politician. He talks like a regular guy.”
Scott Walker has a substantial list of conservative accomplishments. People appreciate that. They don’t appreciate Gov. Bush’s attempt to sell conservatives down the river on important things like immigration and Common Core.
Wherever Vin Weber goes, the kiss of death comes with him. This Washington Post article says that Weber has signed onto Jeb Bush’s “all-but-certain bid for the Republican presidential nomination”:
Vin Weber, a former Minnesota congressman and top policy adviser on Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign, is assisting Jeb Bush’s all-but-certain bid for the Republican presidential nomination, adding yet another high-powered strategist to the former Florida governor’s political circle. Weber confirmed his move Tuesday, as did a Bush aide, after several GOP officials said Weber was working behind the scenes to win Bush support among influential donors and conservative intellectuals.
“My message to conservatives has been: this is the conservative Bush,” Weber said in a phone interview. “I remember when his brother first ran, and he was a fine president. But at the time, most conservatives around the country said it’s too bad because Jeb is the real conservative in the family. I’m reminding my friends about those conversations.”
Jeb might be the most conservative of the Bushes. As Florida’s governor, he implemented some genuinely conservative reforms. Since going national, however, Jeb’s taken on a leftist tilt, starting with his support for Common Core, which most movement conservatives consider the ultimate deal-breaker for GOP presidential candidates.
In recent weeks, Weber said he and other Bush allies have been informally meeting with skeptical leaders on the right to talk through Bush’s gubernatorial record, touting his work on “educational choice and taxes and spending.” Their goal is to scrape away the notion that Bush is a political moderate, a notion that has become a barnacle on his potential candidacy.
Vin Weber knows that Jeb Bush’s chances at being the nominee shrink rapidly if he’s tagged with the moderate label. Bush’s stand on Common Core is close to a deal-breaker. Bush’s position on immigration isn’t noticeably different from John McCain’s or Lindsey ‘Gramnesty’ Graham’s position on amnesty. Bush’s statement at a CEO conference hosted by the Wall Street Journal that Republicans have to be willing to “lose the primary to win the general election” turned lots of people off. John McCain threw conservatives, especially Christian conservatives, under the bus in 2008. His defeat was the worst defeat a Republican presidential nominee has suffered since Barry Goldwater’s defeat at the hands of LBJ in 1964.
Jeb Bush’s disastrous statement won’t help his cause. Frankly, it’s a miscalculation. You can’t tell conservatives they’re wrong, then expect them to support you in the general election.
During Romney’s campaigns for the White House in 2008 and 2012, Weber served as a senior policy hand, organizing meetings with think-tank specialists on foreign and domestic issues, and keeping tabs on conservative concerns.
There’s the proof that Weber is the GOP’s kiss of death, the GOP’s equivalent of Bob Shrum or Bob Beckel.
After John McCain lost in 2008, I spoke with a friend about senators becoming presidents. I half-kiddingly said that Republicans should pass a motion that senators should never be allowed to be the GOP’s presidential nominee. I know that such a resolution is impossible, which is why I said it in jest. That being said, senators don’t run things. They aren’t the decider. They’re the pontificators. Soon-to-be former Gov. Rick Perry, (R-TX), weighed in on the subject:
Perry, considering a repeat presidential bid in 2016, had just spoken at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library for an event celebrating the 50th anniversary of Reagan’s famous “A Time For Choosing” speech. Among his scalding criticisms of Obama, Perry explained the president’s failings as due to his background as a U.S. senator, something that happens to apply to several of his would-be challengers for the GOP presidential nomination.
“If you’re in the Senate or if you’re in the House, you can give a speech and then go home. Governors can’t. We have to govern,” Perry said, adding, “And the president of the United States, historically, has had to operate that way, too; the ones that were successful. And one of the reasons why this President is not successful is because he’s never had that experience.”
Asked if the next president will be a senator, Perry said, “No.”
It’s worth noting that the top-tier candidates on the Democratic side are both senators, too. But I digress.
Gov. Perry is right, though intentionally a bit oversimplistic. Legislators work hard if they’re doing their jobs right. That being said, their job is mostly debating legislation. Their work is done during scheduled sessions. Presidents and governors work during sessions, too, to get their legislative agendas passed. During sessions, though, they’re also called on to deal with crises, whether it’s a president responding to international hot spots or governors responding to public safety crises within their state or on their state’s borders.
Then, after the sessions are over, presidents and governors are essentially on call 24/7 the rest of the year. They’re never on recess, though President Obama certainly makes it look like he doesn’t take the White House with him.
It isn’t a stretch to think that Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz think they see the next president of the United States when they look in the mirror each morning. They don’t. What accomplishments do these men have? They haven’t implemented major reforms like Scott Walker, John Kasich, Perry and Bobby Jindal have. They haven’t revived their states’ economies like Kasich, Perry and Walker have. The best that Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz can say is that they prevented Sen. Reid and President Obama from doing awful things.
They shouldn’t be discredited for that. What they’ve done isn’t insignificant. It just isn’t nearly as significant as what Govs. Walker, Jindal, Perry and Kasich have accomplished.
Lest this be just about Republicans, let’s ask what Hillary or Elizabeth Warren has accomplished. Hillary’s staff noted that she traveled more flight miles than any other Secretary of State in US history. That’s nice. She can redeem those miles so she and Bill can take a nice vacation together.
In terms of actual policies implemented, she got 4 American patriots killed in Benghazi by being asleep at the switch. She ignored multiple pleas from Christopher Stevens for enhanced security for the compound in Benghazi. Then she the nerve to say she hadn’t heard of those urgent requests.
Nobody will buy that BS in 2016. They didn’t buy it in 2012 and they aren’t buying it now.
Her first ‘accomplishment’ was presenting Russia with a reset switch that Russia interpreted as meaning that they could do whatever they wanted in Ukraine and anywhere else in eastern Europe and the middle east. Coddling our enemies (Russia, Iran) and mistreating our allies (Israel, the British and Iraq) isn’t what presidential resumes are built on.
As pathetic as Hillary’s list of accomplishments is, Elizabeth Warren’s list of accomplishments is more pathetic. In fact, it’s nonexistent.
It’s still early but I’d argue that 2016 is shaping up to be GOP year for taking back the White House. Rick Perry has presided over the strongest economy in the nation. Scott Walker passed collective bargaining reform, then staved off the unions’ attempts to kill the reforms. He also passed a $2.2 billion tax cut while creating 110,000 jobs. Bobby Jindal passed school choice laws that are improving educational outcomes in Louisiana. John Kasich’s economic policies have revived Ohio. He cut taxes while eliminating an $8 billion deficit upon entering office.
By comparison, the Democrats have a pair of wannabes as their top tier.
Technorati: John McCain, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Senators, Rick Perry, Scott Walker, John Kasich, Bobby Jindal, Reforms, Collective Bargaining, School Choice, Tort Reform, GOP, Hillary, Elizabeth Warren, Alinskyites, Democrats, Election 2016
Last night was Jay Carney’s first night as a senior political analyst for CNN. After watching this video, I hope CNN isn’t paying him much:
Frankly, Sen. McCain beat him like a drum. It was a flashback to the daily Carney fetal position daily briefings. This exchange is exceptionally decisive:
McCAIN: No, facts are stubborn things, Mr. Carney, and that is his entire national security team, including the Secretary of State said he want to arm and train and equip these people and he made the unilateral decision to turn them down. The fact he didn’t a residual force in Iraq, overruled all of his military advisers, is the reason why we’re facing ISIS today.
So the facts are stubborn things in history and people ought to know them. And now the president is saying basically that we are going to take certain actions, which I would favor, but to say that America is safer, and that the situation is very much like Yemen and Somalia shows me that the president really doesn’t have a grasp for how serious the threat of ISIS is.
CARNEY: Well, again, Senator, we’re going to have to agree to disagree. And I think on the question of the residual force, there was another player in that which was the Iraqi government. A, and B, it was the fulfillment of the previous administration’s withdrawal plan. And it was also the fulfillment of the president’s promise to withdraw from Iraq and not maintain a true presence, in perpetuity, which is pretty consistent with what the American people wanted and believed it was the right approach.
McCAIN: Mr. Carney, you are again saying facts that are patently false. The fact is because [Senator] Lindsey Graham, [former Senator] Joe Lieberman and I, we were in Baghdad, they wanted a residual force. The president has never made a statement during that or after that he wanted a residual force left behind. The Iraqis were ready to go. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee that the number cascaded down to 3,500. That was not sufficient to do anything but to defend themselves. And you in your role as a spokesperson bragged about the fact that the last American combat troop had left Iraq. If we had left a residual force the situation would not be what it is today. And there would be a lot more.
It’s worth repeating that President Obama took the position of I-know-better-than-my-national-security-team what’s needed in Iraq. That’s characteristic of a man with great hubris. That’s fine. History will judge him for that decision.
Further, Carney still sounds like the dishonest partisan hack that conducted the daily White House press briefings. He’s still peddling the BS that Iraq kicked the US out. That’s contrary to what President Obama said during a debate with Mitt Romney. In that debate, President Obamba bragged that he should get credit for keeping his promise of getting the US out of Iraq.
Carney hasn’t figured it out that a glorified desk jockey can’t argue with an eyewitness on the ground at the ‘scene of the crime.’ Sens. McCain, Graham and Lieberman talked with the Iraqi government. They don’t have to accept the Obama administration’s spin. They talked directly with the Iraqi government.
It isn’t a secret that I’m not Sen. McCain’s biggest fan. Still, if he says that he spoke with the Iraqi government and that they told him they wanted to negotiate a status of forces agreement, then I’ll trust him.
Finally, experts understand that ISIL wouldn’t have constituted itself had the US kept 20,000 troops on the ground. They would’ve been demolished before ISIL before they got to Fallujah.
Yesterday, I got an email alert about a lawsuit filed by the Center for Competitive Politics challenging the constitutionality of another provision of McCain-Feingold. Here’s the heart of the matter:
The Independence Institute wishes to run two ads: one asking Colorado Senators Mark Udall and Michael Bennett to support a federal sentencing reform bill, and one asking citizens to contact Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and urge him to initiate an audit of the Colorado Health Benefit Exchange. The McCain-Feingold law, along with a similar state statute, effectively prevents the group from raising money for the ads.
“This situation shows the damage to free speech caused by carelessly written campaign finance laws,” said David Keating, president of CCP. “Instead of advocacy on an important public issue, there will be silence. That’s unacceptable under the First Amendment, and is the reason why we filed this lawsuit.”
Prior to the passage of Obamacare, McCain-Feingold was the worst legislation in the last half century. I can’t even say that the intent behind McCain-Feingold was good. Its effect was to protect incumbents while limiting political speech.
There’s nothing honorable about either thing.
Here’s what McCain-Feingold does to issue advocacy:
Colorado and federal law treat speech about public issues as campaign speech whenever a candidate is mentioned in a broadcast ad within 60 days of the general election. Groups must either file public reports with personal details about donors who have provided funds for the ads, or refrain from speaking. The result is what First Amendment advocates call a “chilling” effect on advocacy, depriving the public of important speech about issues of public importance.
Here’s why disclosure in these instances is frightening:
Donors and speakers have many reasons to protect their privacy. Some fear retaliation from government officials who disagree with them. Others fear physical harm or threats to themselves and their families, vandalism to their property, loss of jobs, or boycotts of their business if they support unpopular views.
Over half a century ago, the Supreme Court ruled in NAACP v. Alabama that not disclosing donors to issue advocacy groups was constitutionally protected. Imagine the fury that the KKK would’ve visited upon the people supporting the NAACP.
While the threats are different today, the threats are just as real. Instead of fearing the KKK, these days, issue advocacy groups have to worry about the Justice Department, the IRS and other agents representing weaponized government.
It’s time to eliminate another disgusting part of McCain-Feingold. The sooner it’s eliminated, the better.
Technorati: McCain-Feingold, Censorship, Issue Advocacy, NAACP v. Alabama, Supreme Court, Independence Institute, Center for Competitive Politics, Civil Rights, First Amendment, Weaponized Government, IRS, DOJ
If Harry Reid had said that he had sources who told him that Mitt Romney hadn’t paid taxes for 10 years while he was at a fundraiser, he would’ve gotten sued into bankruptcy by Mitt Romney. Sen. Reid essentially admitted that he didn’t have proof to verify his accusation when he said that he shouldn’t have to prove it, that the accusation was against Gov. Romney, not him.
That’s BS. The accusation against Sen. Reid is that he’s a liar who’s epeatedly gotten caught lying. Victor Davis Hanson’s article provides substantial ammunition against Sen. Reid:
During the 2012 presidential campaign, Reid libeled candidate Mitt Romney with the unsubstantiated and later-refuted charge that Romney was a tax cheat. “The word’s out that he [Romney] hasn’t paid any taxes for 10 years,” Reid said.
Later, when asked for proof, Reid offered a pathetic rejoinder: “I have had a number of people tell me that.” One wonders how many names were on Reid’s McCarthyite “tell” list — were there, as McCarthy used to bluster, 205 names, or perhaps just 57?
When asked again to document the slur, Reid echoed McCarthy perfectly: “The burden should be on him. He’s the one I’ve alleged has not paid any taxes.”
That’s just part of the proof of Sen. Reid’s McCarthyite accusations.
Reid has also brought back McCarthy’s custom of vicious and sometimes profane insults. During the 2008 presidential campaign, Reid announced: “I can’t stand John McCain.” Of then-President George W. Bush, Reid said: “President Bush is a liar.” Reid claimed that fellow Mormon Mitt Romney had “sullied” his religion.
When Gen. David Petraeus brought proof to Congress that the surge in Iraq was beginning to work by late 2007, Reid declared, “No, I don’t believe him, because it’s not happening.” He elaborated on that charge by labeling Petraeus, at the time the senior ground commander of U.S. forces fighting in Iraq, a veritable liar. Reid alleged that Petraeus “has made a number of statements over the years that have not proven to be factual.”
What’s stunning is that his Democratic colleagues in the Senate haven’t criticized him for his despicable, McCarthyite, unethical behavior. Neither has anyone in the supposedly MSM.
Jeanne Shaheen hasn’t criticized Sen. Reid for his McCarthyite rantings. Mary Landrieu, Mark Udall, Mark Begich, Kay Hagans, Al Franken and Mark Pryor haven’t criticized him for his McCarthyite antics, either.
In fact, Al Franken has virtually repeated Sen. Reid’s rants against the Koch brothers, the Democrats’ latest villains. I wrote this post to highlight the Koch brothers’ crimes against America:
Far from trying to rig the system, I have spent decades opposing cronyism and all political favors, including mandates, subsidies and protective tariffs—even when we benefit from them. I believe that cronyism is nothing more than welfare for the rich and powerful, and should be abolished.
Reid’s and Franken’s repeated rants against the Koch brothers are rants against people who want to get rid of corporate welfare. That isn’t something to vilify the Koch brothers for. That’s something that should be celebrated. Here’s something else that should be celebrated:
Koch employees have earned well over 700 awards for environmental, health and safety excellence since 2009, many of them from the [EPA and OSHA]. EPA officials have commended us for our “commitment to a cleaner environment” and called us “a model for other companies.”
Mark Pryor is so disgusting that he thinks Tom Cotton, who served 2 tours of duty in Iraq, is a spoiled brat who thinks he’s entitled to a seat in the US Senate.
To summarize, Sen. Reid’s malicious lies against the Democrats’ latest villain say that he’s willing to say anything despicable to help his candidates. Sen. Franken’s mindless rants against people who want to eliminate corporate welfare and whose employees have literally won hundreds of “environmental, health and safety excellence since 2009″ say that he’s content with vilifying good corporate citizes for political gain. Sen. Pryor’s hate-filled, anti-military rantings tell us that he’s a contemptible excuse for a human being.
It’s one thing to hit political opponents hard with verifiable facts. That’s called playing political hardball. When Sen. Franken lies about American industrialists who’ve contributed greatly to their employees’ lives, that’s called despicable behavior. When a U.S. senator criticizes a military veteran of being pampered and having an entitlement mentality, that’s proof that he’s a despicable human being who doesn’t have the requisite character to be a senator.
There’s only one conclusion to be drawn from this proof. The Democratic Party is an immoral political party. They haven’t hesitated in lying about the Koch brothers, Mitt Romney or Tom Cotton. Their senators have stayed silent while Sen. Reid maligned Gov. Romney, thereby giving their silent consent to Sen. Reid’s despicable actions.
The Democrats’ culture of corruption stinks to high heavens. It’s time to eliminate that stench from Washington, DC. It’s time to start fresh with people who’ll listen to the American people.
That’s the only way to restore trust in the institutions of government.
Technorati: Harry Reid, McCarthyism, Slander, Al Franken, Mark Pryor, Mark Begich, Culture of Corruption, Crony Capitalism, Corporate Welfare, Agenda Media, Praetorian Guard, Democrats, Koch Brothers, Industrialists, Tom Cotton, Iraq War Veteran, Conservatism, Election 2014
A loyal reader of LFR sent me the text of an article in the Legal Ledger about what happened after Sen. Julianne Ortman proposed raising taxes in 2011. Here’s the key part of the article:
The letter comes after a few days’ worth of news reports and speculation about some willingness to raise taxes within the GOP Senate caucus, whether it be by broadening sales taxes, eliminating tax breaks, or other means. Taxes Chair Julianne Ortman was at the center of the speculation after she made comments calling tax expenditures government spending. Ortman has told us in the past that she fully intends to review and eliminate some tax breaks, although she disavowed any express wish to raise total revenues. She also mused favorably about how some states have been able to broaden sales taxes and lower rates.
In turn, it seems GOP communications staff kept Ortman under wraps most all day Thursday. After her Taxes hearing Thursday morning, the head of communications for the caucus, Michael Brodkorb, was seen waiting in the wings with another communications staffer to lead Ortman away. In response to a question directed at Ortman, Brodkorb simply replied: “No comment today.”
At the time, the House and Senate GOP caucuses were saying that they were committed to balancing the budget without raising taxes, which they accomplished after Gov. Dayton shut down the state government for 2 weeks.
First, Sen. Ortman’s proposal was terrible policy because it didn’t do anything to fix out-of-control DFL spending increases. Giving the DFL additional revenue is like putting out a fire with a little extra gas on the fire. Secondly, when Sen. Ortman went rogue, she did so without telling her colleagues. That’s the fastest way of stabbing her colleagues in the back.
It was her way of saying that her priorities were more important than her colleagues’ priorities, that her priorities mattered and that their policies didn’t. When Sen. Ortman went rogue, House and Senate GOP leadership were in the process of negotiating with Gov. Dayton, Sen. Bakk and then-Minority Leader Thissen. Her proposal cut the legs out from under the GOP leadership.
The lesson to be learned from this is that Sen. Ortman a) isn’t a team player, b) isn’t “a conservative champion” and c) can’t be relied on to do the right thing in holding down taxes.
Minnesotans don’t need someone who will fit right in with the DC Surrender Caucus right alongside John McCain and Lindsey Graham. We need someone principled who will fight for smart policies that grow the economy, create jobs and make Minnesotans’ lives better.
Technorati: Julianne Ortman, Tax Increases, Sarah Palin, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Going Rogue, Surrender Caucus, Republicans, Principled Conservatism, Senate GOP Caucus, No New Taxes, Election 2014
Friday night, the trio of David Schultz, Kathryn Pearson & Stacey Hunter-Hecht were guest panelists on Almanac. Predictably, Dr. Schultz bemoaned the fact that Republican moderates were nowhere to be found in the House on immigration.
This isn’t a big thing because Dr. Schultz hasn’t had a new idea in years, possibly decades. Further, Dr. Schultz has been a shill for the DFL for nearly all that time.
The problem with the Senate amnesty bill isn’t that there aren’t enough GOP moderates in the House. The problem with the Senate amnesty bill is that conservatives know it isn’t a solution to the problem it’s meant to fix. I wrote here about the gaping hole in the ‘Border Trickle’ in the Senate Amnesty Bill:
On page 35, line 24 of the new bill, a provision was inserted that says Napolitano–who already believes the border is secure–can decide against building a fence if she chooses not to erect one:
Notwithstanding paragraph (1), nothing in this subsection shall require the Secretary to install fencing, or infrastructure that directly results from the installation of such fencing, in a particular location along the Southern border, if the Secretary determines that the use or placement of such resources is not the most appropriate means to achieve and maintain effective control over the Southern border at such location.
In other words, House conservatives see this as a sham provision. It doesn’t secure the border. It doesn’t fix the problem. Its only purpose was to provide political cover for weak-kneed Senate Republicans.
House Republicans shouldn’t budge from their demand for a real solution to immigration. That means a border fence. That means 5 straight years of enforcing current immigration laws. That means no catch and release. That means implementing E-Verify.
Dr. Schultz’s lamentations about the lack of House GOP moderates is silliness parading as thoughtful policymaking. The Senate Amnesty Bill has a gaping hole in it. Milton Friedman, the late, great economist, was fond of asking where the halfway point between right and wrong was.
When the gap between House conservatives and the Senate Amnesty Bill are this immense, Dr. Friedman’s question should be modified to ask what the halfway point is between a solution and a disaster.
The Senate Amnesty Bill is a disaster. The CBO says that it doesn’t stop illegal immigration, meaning that the Republicans who voted for the Senate bill voted for a bill that will cause us to revisit the issue 5-7 years from now.
If I were advising House Republicans on this issue, I’d advise them to highlight the failure of the Senate bill to fix the problem. I’d send Speaker Boehner and Rep. Trey Gowdy out daily to any TV news program to talk about the need for a real solution. I’d have them pick a fight with Chuck Schumer, John McCain and Lindsey Graham. I’d have them ask why they support a bill that doesn’t fix the problem.
It’s really that simple.