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If there’s a message coming from Newt Gingrich’s op-ed, it’s that Republicans must put together a compelling message to pass the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Gingrich reminds Republicans that “passing serious legislation is very hard work. There is still a great deal to do, and the timeline is incredibly tight”, adding that “The Joint Committee on Taxation has already provided preliminary analysis for the bill. Its estimates are static and assume tax cuts will have no impact on growth. As a result of this bad assumption, the JCT incorrectly estimates the bill would create a significant budget shortfall, $1.43 trillion over 10 years.”

Gingrich continued, saying “The truth is, our gross domestic product is growing at 3 percent, largely due to deregulatory efforts by the Trump administration and the expectation of tax cuts. Passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would further spur GDP growth, so the bill should be scored dynamically. The Tax Foundation has made dynamic estimates on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which show the bill would ‘significantly lower marginal tax rates and the cost of capital, which would lead to 3.9 percent higher GDP over the long term, 3.1 percent higher wages, and an additional 975,000 full-time equivalent jobs.’ This economic growth would raise federal revenues by nearly $1 trillion over 10 years, according to the Tax Foundation. In the end, this new revenue could bring the bill close to neutral, depending on what baseline is used to score it.”

Let’s get serious about something. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will speed up the economy. That’s indisputable even though Nancy Pelosi insisted in this speech that it would kill jobs. Ms. Pelosi has told lots of whoppers in the past. This is another whopper. Republicans seem interested in self-destruction.

Sen. Lankford has announced his opposition to it because it supposedly increases the deficit. Here’s a simple question for Sen. Lankford. If Republicans fail to pass this bill, what’s the likelihood they’ll have to vote on a Democrat budget that would hurt job creation and economic growth? What’s the likelihood that a Democrat budget would increase the deficit more than this bill would?

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act isn’t perfect but it’s definitely a step in the right direction. There’s economic growth happening right now. This isn’t just the right time to pass tax cuts. It’s the best time to pass the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

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If I had to give this article a title, I’d give the title ‘You can’t beat something with nothing’. Another title I’d consider is ‘Republicans win while Democrats whine’. Katie Packer Beeson’s article is spot on.

It starts by saying “The Democrats seem to enjoy gloating about the hot mess that is the Republican Party these days. Former GOP presidents warning the president about the people he surrounds himself with; sitting Republican U.S. senators calling the president unstable and unqualified; and a former GOP speaker of the house saying “there is no Republican Party. The president isn’t a Republican.” And Democrats’ friends in the mainstream media have kindly created an echo chamber that makes them think that they are always right and the Republicans are a bunch of sexist, racist, whack jobs. So why aren’t they winning?”

It continued, saying “So when they lost the election, there was a reckoning. The leadership of the Democratic Party was drummed up and new, forward-looking leaders took the reins and offered an alternative to what they saw as the disaster of Donald Trump. Wait, no. That isn’t what happened. Instead, they re-elected Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the house. They elected Chuck Schumer as Senate majority [editor’s note: Schumer is minority leader] leader and completely sold out to the New York and California wings of the Democratic Party.”

Then there’s this:

Instead of talking about middle-class tax cuts, they talked about transgender bathroom access. Instead of talking about fixing Obamacare, which was crushing many in the middle class with high premiums and complicated doctor selections, they walked right into the trap of the alt-right and began tearing down Civil War statues.

Democrats still haven’t figured out how to talk to blue collar America. They’re experts at talking to college professors and progressive activists but they’re worthless at talking with factory workers, small businesses and tradesmen. It’s like those people are from another planet. (Perhaps, it’s the Democrats that are from a different planet?)

Look how paralyzed Hillary looks when confronted by a coal miner:

Hillary looked positively petrified. She looked like she would’ve rather been anywhere else in the world than at that roundtable.

What [Democrats] don’t seem to understand is that you can point out your opponent’s weaknesses all day long, but if you don’t provide an alternative, then people will stick with the status quo. I’ve spoken to dozens of Republican women in recent months who have grown disillusioned with the Republican Party, and when I ask why they don’t defect, the answer is always the same: “It’s no better over there.”

Until Democrats learn what animates blue collar workers, they should expect to lose lots of races, at least enough to keep them in the minority for a decade or more.

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Within minutes of the GOP rollout of their tax reform and simplification plan, Democrats like Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer and Chris van Hollen were criticizing the plan that they hadn’t seen. Ms. Pelosi called it a Ponzi Scheme, saying “Even after ransacking all the middle-class benefits, Republicans are still adding trillions to the deficit,’ she said, adding that the plan is a ‘scheme to use the debt they pile up today to obliterate Medicare and Medicaid tomorrow.'” Then she said “This is a shell game, a Ponzi scheme that corporate America will perpetrate on the American people. But if you’re the wealthiest 1 percent, Republicans will give you the sun, the moon, and the stars — all of that at the expense of the great middle class.”

Meanwhile, Sen. Schumer wrote this op-ed earlier this week, insisting that “Trump’s plan, by contrast, would slash taxes for the top tax bracket, repeal the estate tax, and create a huge new loophole…”

Sen. van Hollen issued a statement, saying “Ending the state income tax deduction for hardworking families in order to give a massive tax giveaway to big corporations and the very wealthy is sadly par for the course in this Republican tax plan. We will fight it tooth and nail.”

Meanwhile, this plan that the Democrats are criticizing without reading the bill (they have a habit of that, don’t they?) will likely get some Democrats’ votes:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said on “The Daily Briefing” today that he expects to have some Senate Democrats support tax reform. He told Dana Perino that there are “at least three” Democrats in the Senate who have signaled they’re likely to be a “yes” on tax reform.

It’s clear that Sen. McConnell relishes the thought of blasting Ms. Pelosi’s statements. That’s the highlight of this video:

McConnell chuckled when Perino played House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Ca.) criticism of the proposal. Pelosi called it “deficit-exploding” and cast it as a “multi-trillion dollar giveaway to the wealthiest and corporations” at the expense of children, seniors and workers. McConnell said the Washington Post rated the claim as “four Pinocchios,” calling it “almost entirely inaccurate.”

McConnell said the bill unveiled today would reduce middle-class taxes and business taxes “to prevent our jobs from being exported to other countries. That’s the core of the bill.”

Let’s set something straight. Democrats are too invested in the Resistance to do the right thing. Telling the truth isn’t part of their action plan. With today’s Democratic Party, ideology trumps doing what’s right.

Later on the show, Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), a member of the budget and appropriations committees, said the plan is a $2 trillion “windfall” for big corporations, insisting that middle-class families will see higher taxes. “There are millions of middle-class taxpayers who will see their taxes increase in order to provide tax breaks for multinational corporations,” said Van Hollen. He said there are a number of proposals from the Democratic caucus to help working and middle-class families, specifically with child care costs.

Notice van Hollen’s trickery? He isn’t interested in across-the-board tax cuts nor is he interested in tax simplification. He wants specific carve-outs for voting groups he wants to keep voting for Democrats. Further, van Hollen’s idea of tax policy keeps lawyers, lobbyists and accountants fully employed. The GOP plan hopes to limit complexities in the tax code, thereby reducing the cost of tax compliance.

Reducing the cost of tax compliance is a major reduction in expenses to small businesses. To entrepreneurs, cutting compliance costs is just as welcome as cutting tax rates. Either way, it’s more money in their pockets.

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It isn’t surprising that Nancy Pelosi is calling for an independent investigation to prevent Russian meddling in US elections.

In her statement, Ms. Pelosi said “Even with an accelerating Special Counsel investigation inside the Justice Department, and investigations inside the Republican Congress, we still need an outside, fully independent investigation to expose Russia’s meddling in our election and the involvement of Trump officials,” Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement Monday. “Defending the integrity of our democracy demands that Congress look forward to counter Russian aggression and prevent future meddling with our elections.”

This seems like stupid messaging. This morning, it was announced that Paul Manafort and his associate Rick Gates had been indicted. According to the indictment, some of the alleged illegal activity happened before Barack announced his candidacy for president.

Ms. Pelosi decision to call for this independent investigation steps all over the message that Manafort has been indicted. When there’s bad news coming out about your political adversary, exit the stage and let them endure the spotlight. Ms. Pelosi apparently didn’t figure it out that she should leave the stage.

Erick Erickson’s op-ed on the Manafort indictment is worth reading. In his op-ed, Erickson wrote “The Mueller team looked into the campaign, went down various rabbit holes, and wound up in Manafort’s tax returns circa 2012, well before Trump considered running for office. Therefore, they can claim, there is nothing there with the campaign.”

Judge Napolitano’s explanation might help shed light on the importance of the Manafort indictment:

At this point, there’s nothing found thus far that hints the Trump campaign worked with Putin’s administration to win the election. The thought that Putin tried meddling with the election is something that the overwhelming majority of Americans have already accepted. In terms of momentum, this isn’t a game-changer.

When it comes to shooting their mouths off without hearing the details, it’s impossible to find anyone more willing to make unsubstantiated accusations based on whatever than Democrats. Let’s be blunt in setting this up. President Trump signed an executive order instructing his HHS secretary and other federal departments to look for ways to give the American people the ability to buy health insurance across state lines, thereby increasing competition. He’s also instructed his HHS secretary to change the definition of Qualified Health Plans, aka QHPs, so that the people don’t have to purchase Cadillac plans.

It’s worth noting that the ACA instructs the HHS secretary to fill in tons of blanks on a wide range of provisions. For instance, “there are more than 2,500 references to the secretary of HHS in the health care law (in most cases she’s simply mentioned as ‘the Secretary’). A further breakdown finds that there are more than 700 instances in which the Secretary is instructed that she ‘shall’ do something, and more than 200 cases in which she “may” take some form of regulatory action if she chooses. On 139 occasions, the law mentions decisions that the ‘Secretary determines.'”

In other words, this Republican administration is instructing “the Secretary” to do what the ACA requires the Secretary to do. Did Democrats applaud President Trump’s decision? Get serious. This Washington Examiner article recorded the Democrats’ reaction:

Congressional Democrats said Thursday that President Trump’s executive order to relax insurance rules is the latest evidence of Republican “sabotage” against Obamacare.

Nancy Pelosi couldn’t wait to weigh in:

“I do know it is a sabotage of the Affordable Care Act and quite frankly a disservice to the American people,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said in a press conference Tuesday.

Remember that Ms. Pelosi didn’t have any details about President Trump’s EO when she criticized President Trump’s EO. Coming from the woman who infamously said that they had to pass the bill to find out what’s in it, that’s pretty rich.

What’s interesting about the Democrats’ criticism of President Trump’s EO is that it increases competition. President Trump’s EO lets the people pick the health insurance plan they want rather than having to buy the plan that the government instructs you to buy.

That isn’t sabotaging anything. The people might argue that President Trump’s EO enhances their options. It’s funny that Democrats instinctively criticize President Trump each time he’s modified and/or improved an Obama bill. Why can’t the Democrats just once celebrate President Trump’s improvements? This is insulting:

Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., said in a series of tweets that the order could create more “junk” insurance plans since it could lead to bypassing pre-existing condition protections on the individual market. “It would allow cheap, low-quality plans onto the market that could discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, seniors, women,” he tweeted.

Implicit in Sen. Kaine’s tweet is that the American people need the government’s help in picking health insurance plans. Why don’t Democrats think families, after consulting with their physicians, can make informed decisions?

Sen. Schumer and Nancy Pelosi are upset that President Trump has them over a proverbial barrel as they start negotiations on DACA legislation. They’re upset because they’ll lose politically if they agree to President Trump’s demands. If they don’t agree to his demands, they’ll lose politically, too. The biggest of President Trump’s demands is funding to build his border wall.

When Schumer and Pelosi got the news that this was part of President Trump’s demands, they went ballistic, saying “We told the President at our meeting that we were open to reasonable border security measures alongside the DREAM Act, but this list goes so far beyond what is reasonable. This proposal fails to represent any attempt at compromise.” The definition of reasonable is “agreeable to reason or sound judgment; logical.” Just because the Democrats’ pro-amnesty special interests don’t think building the border wall is reasonable doesn’t mean it isn’t reasonable. Building the wall is exercising sound judgment. Not only that, the American people agree with most of President Trump’s list of demands, often by overwhelming margins. If Pelosi and Schumer want to argue that more than two-thirds of the American people aren’t reasonable, that’s their choice.

Ms. Pelosi’s hinting publicly that Democrats might be willing to shut down the government if they don’t get what they want:

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Monday wouldn’t rule out withholding support for end-of-the-year budget bills, and risk a government shutdown, if President Trump and the Republicans don’t agree to protections for immigrants brought to the country illegally as children. “We have to do it before Christmas, that’s just the way it is,” she said Monday in an interview with The Washington Post.

That’s a major political loser for Democrats on multiple platforms. First, this will alienate blue collar America districts. If the Democrats don’t flip those districts and/or states, they can’t win majorities in either the House or Senate. In fact, it will likely cause them to lose seats in both the House and Senate if Pelosi shuts down the government. Even if they don’t shut the government down, this strategy is foolish. It isn’t difficult seeing every vulnerable Democrat in the House get tied to Pelosi’s statement. Do they really think that they can hide from Pelosi’s statements?

There’s another part of the Democrats’ threats that’s a political loser. By threatening shutting down the government over building the wall, Democrats are essentially admitting that they’re the open borders political party. They can issue statement after statement that they’re for reasonable border security measures. It won’t matter because people think of the wall as true border security. This video should be part of the Trump administration’s campaign to build the wall:

I’d love seeing Schumer and Pelosi fight against that video. It isn’t that they’d win. It’s that it’d be fun watching them attempt to tell people that the wall hasn’t had a positive public safety/national security impact. The statistics speak for themselves. If Democrats want to fight that, that’s their decision.

It just isn’t a reasonable decision.

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President Trump outlined his principles for an immigration compromise Sunday night. Saying that Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi weren’t pleased with President Trump’s immigration principles is understatement. In their joint statement, Pelosi and Schumer said “the administration can’t be serious about compromise or helping the Dreamers if they begin with a list that is anathema to the Dreamers, the immigrant community and the vast majority of Americans.”

Pelosi and Schumer must stick to that line because their base requires it. That doesn’t mean that their base is representative of a majority of Americans, though. I was thrilled when I read the “agreement goes far beyond an outline of a deal with the White House announced by Schumer and Pelosi last month, after their meeting with Trump. The two Democrats said the president had agreed to attach a DACA fix to a border security package that would not include wall funding. They reiterated on Sunday night that their agreement ‘explicitly ruled out’ the border wall, a key Trump campaign promise. ‘We told the President at our meeting that we were open to reasonable border security measures alongside the DREAM Act, but this list goes so far beyond what is reasonable. This proposal fails to represent any attempt at compromise,’ Schumer and Pelosi added.”

There’s little doubt that backstabbers like Sen. McCain and Sen. Collins would agree with Schumer and Pelosi. That’s their decision. If they vote against the border wall, Republicans will simply wait until the new Senate is sworn in, then tell the backstabbers they can either do the right thing or get primaried. That’s their choice.

As for Schumer and Pelosi, their choice is whether they’ll support real border security, including the wall or whether they want to have this issue used against their vulnerable incumbents in red states next November. President Trump should tell them that funding for the Wall isn’t negotiable. Period. Point out to them how popular the wall is in blue collar districts that Democrats have to flip or hold to retake the majority. If they don’t moderate their position, then they’ll have to pay the price for their intransigence.

Finally, this is the perfect issue to tee up for 2020 if you’re President Trump. Blue collar workers know how much this has hurt their wages. If Democrats want to flip Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan in 2020, getting on the right side of this issue is essential for them.

Watching Nancy Pelosi call for gun control in the wake of another shooting incident isn’t a pretty sight. Nonetheless, it’s part of the news cycle so I’ll cover it. In her letter to Speaker Ryan, Ms. Pelosi called for the creation of “a Select Committee on Gun Violence.”

Sen. Chris Murphy, (D-CT), posted this tweet, saying “To my colleagues: your cowardice to act cannot be whitewashed by thoughts and prayers.” One of the people responding to Sen. Murphy’s tweeted “There in lies the problem. We need to get the NRA out of politics and make common sense gun laws a priority!” That’s the only proof I need to show that Democrats oppose the First Amendment and the Second Amendment.

The queen of never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity, aka Hillary Clinton, outdid herself Monday by inventing “an ancillary argument that more people would have died if Paddock had used a ‘silencer.'” After that, Gregg Jarrett took Mrs. Clinton to the proverbial woodshed:

But Clinton’s claim that Paddock could have used such a device on his automatic weapon only underscores that Clinton is nothing, if not obtuse. Suppressors do not function well on automatic weapons. They tend to melt or malfunction under the intense heat of automatic fire. For this reason, there are only a few companies that even manufacture them for use on automatic weapons. And there is almost no marketplace for them.

Yet, Clinton is calling for a ban on a device that has no significant history of use in U.S. crime.

The law on suppressors is already strong. Pursuant to federal law, a person has to have a permit to own or possess one and only after undergoing a criminal background check. Violation of the law is a felony punishable by up to ten years in prison. If it is used during the course of a crime, the penalty is enhanced to 30 years.

I don’t recommend Speaker Ryan creating a commission/committee to study gun violence, I’d recommend that their first assignment is to study gun violence in Baltimore and Chicago, then publish a report on those findings.

As poorly as the politicians behaved, civilians quickly turned into that night’s heroes:

Thompson, a former EMT in Compton, California, and his friends broke into police cruisers to get medical supplies. “Our triage area was just civilians,” Thompson says. “I had a firefighter with me, a trauma nurse, and we were going down the line, doing what we could.” They marked their triage patients with Sharpies and lipstick, Thompson said.

I just wish our ‘leaders’ thought like this nation’s army of Davids.

The Democrats won’t retake the majority in the US House of Representatives. They won’t because Democrats have a Martha Plimpton problem. As usual, Salena Zito identified the problem in her latest column. The opening paragraph of Ms. Zito’s column says “A clip of Martha Plimpton’s exuberance over the ‘best’ abortion she ever had played out on the television overhead of a gas-station counter somewhere along U.S. Route 422 between Ohio and Pennsylvania.”

To the average person, that’s a little too cold-hearted sounding. That image is amplified in this article. The opening paragraphs say “The days of abortion advocates calling abortion “rare” and “unfortunate” are clearly over. So are the days of being able to claim, “No one is really pro-abortion. No one actually likes it.”
Enter self-proclaimed ‘Christian’ abortionist Willie Parker and actress Martha Plimpton. Sadly, these (and other) abortion advocates do openly celebrate the violence of killing a preborn child. Between movements like #ShoutYourAbortion and Planned Parenthood fighting for abortion like it’s saving someone’s life instead of taking it, abortion has become a symbol of pride for many. Actress Martha Plimpton, however, has taken the pride of having an abortion to an incredulous level.”

In the 1990s, Bill Clinton famously said that abortions “should be safe, legal and rare.” That Democratic Party doesn’t exist anymore. Tom Perez, Nancy Pelosi, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren killed that Democratic Party.

Ms. Zito’s column continues:

After saying Seattle was the home of some of her family, she went on to cheer what she did in her teens: “I also had my first abortion at the Seattle Planned Parenthood. Yay!” With equal exuberance, she also revealed that her Seattle abortion wasn’t her last.

Later, she writes:

“Democrats used to debate the legal right to have one, and that was a point of view that was shared by most voters,” said Michael Wear, a theologically conservative evangelical Christian and Democrat who served in Barack Obama’s faith outreach office in the White House. “I don’t understand why, 14 months before a midterm election, why would you push 20 percent of voters who would love to support Democrats out the door? Better yet, why would you speak of pro-life Democrats as though they were some extraterrestrial who just landed on earth?” he said.

It is rare that anyone who has had an abortion celebrates it — Plimpton seems to fail to understand few in this country do. Maybe the privileged class celebrates abortions? Even if they did, that won’t help the Democratic Party win back voters. Or is it the intellectual class that celebrates them? Even if they did, that doesn’t win back majorities either. Or maybe it’s the celebrity class that does? If so, there’s not enough of them to win back the House or Senate.

In short, this is not the message you want to win every down-ballot seat the party has let waste away under the thrust of identity politics.

When Republican strategists talk about San Francisco liberals or tie candidates directly to Nancy Pelosi, that’s the image they’re trying to plant. It’s the image of a heartless, machine-like woman. (Barbara Boxer fit that image, too.)

Between driving away Catholics with these pro-abortion fanatics and blue collar workers in the Midwest and Rust Belt with their love of environmental activists, Democrats have ceded America’s heartland. That’s why the Democratic Party is a bi-coastal, urban political party.

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Though Democrats insist that DACA is constitutional, it’s been a long time since anyone took their statements seriously. When then-President Obama signed that EO, he did 2 things that won’t pass constitutional muster. First and most importantly, he temporarily exempted an entire demographic group of people from deportation. Then-President Obama’s EO didn’t permanently exempt DREAMers from prosecution or deportation. It just temporarily delayed action on DREAMers. Greg Jarrett’s article sheds an important light on DACA.

In his article, Jarrett writes “At the end of the 19th century, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that congress has ‘plenary power’ (meaning full and complete) to regulate immigration. Derived from Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the doctrine is based on the concept that immigration is a question of national sovereignty, relating to a nation’s right to define its own borders and restrict entrance therein. As the high court observed, ‘Over no conceivable subject is the legislative power of Congress more complete.'”

Considering this information and considering the fact that there’s a well-known proposal that would protect DREAMers permanently, the question is whether Democrats will be reasonable. At this point, I’m betting that they’ll be unreasonable. I’m basing that opinion partially on this video:

Democrats are insisting that Republicans pass the DREAM Act immediately. If the Democrats’ demands aren’t met, Senate Minority Leader Schumer said that they’ll attach the DREAM Act to every bill that the Senate considers until it’s passed. I’d love to see Sen. McConnell tell Sen. Schumer that DREAMers will get protection the minute Democrats vote to fund President Trump’s wall and not a minute sooner.

This does 2 things to Democrats. First, it forces vulnerable Senate Democrats to vote against building the wall. For senators living on the coasts, that isn’t a big deal. For senators living in the Heartland, that’s a big deal. It’s a big deal because it’s a potentially a career-ending vote. Next, it forces Democrats to make a decision on whether being reasonable is more important than obeying the Democrats’ special interest allies. If Democrats vote with their special interest allies, they’ll identify themselves as defenders of The Swamp.

That’s a difficult position to defend going into an election year. Let’s remember that the people that vote in midterms are more conservative than those that vote in presidential elections. Senate Democrats are already running into strong headwinds because of the red states they’re defending seats in. Couple that with the fact that some liberal senators will be running in some fairly red states and you’ve got the definition of pressure. If Democrats side with La Raza, aka NCLR, instead of siding with the American people, they’ll pay a heavy price in November, 2018.

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