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It’s indisputable that 2 of the 3 biggest losers this election were Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi. The DNC picked Mrs. Clinton essentially before their primaries or debates, mostly because they fell in love with her name ID and her fundraising ability. They also picked her out of fear of the Clintons’ retribution.

After another stinging defeat, House Democrats picked Nancy Pelosi to be their leader. Einstein’s cliché said that the definition of insanity was doing the same thing again and again but expecting different results. Based on that definition, 134 House Democrats are insane. Salena Zito didn’t mince words in her latest column, saying “One-hundred and thirty-four House Democrats collectively lost their minds last week. That is how many of Nancy Pelosi’s colleagues it took to vote her back into power despite having lost her third consecutive chance at winning back the majority from the Republicans.”

Mrs. Pelosi is referred to as “a prodigious fundraiser.” Apparently, Democrats think that fundraising still win elections. Apparently, Democrats haven’t figured it out that fundraising isn’t the only thing that’s important to campaigns. Mrs. Clinton outspent Donald Trump in Florida by an obscene amount of money. She lost the state by 125,000 votes.

There’s a connection between Mrs. Clinton’s and Mrs. Pelosi’s fundraising abilities and their unflinching support for the environmental activists’ agenda. While it doesn’t make that connection, Holman Jenkins’ article highlights the futility of President Obama’s agenda:

Mr. Obama came in saying fossil fuels were running out and prices were destined to rise, and instead got the fracking revolution, whose related employment boost was arguably a factor in his re-election victories in Pennsylvania and Ohio. Yet he couldn’t stop looking this gift horse in the mouth.

Unshrewdly, in the name of satisfying his climate-change constituents, he needlessly launched a regulatory war against coal as cheap natural gas was already doing the job for him. Result: Democrats became the enemy in coal country.

He pandered to his green friends on the Keystone XL pipeline. Result: Mr. Trump is inheriting a rebound in natural gas fracking and an associated infrastructure boom that is just now heating up again in time for an incoming administration to get credit.

Then-candidate Obama insisted that he’d push a cap and trade plan that would make electricity prices “necessarily skyrocket”:

Eight years later, Mrs. Clinton openly said that she was going to put lots of coal companies out of business:

At this point, I’m not certain that Democrats displayed insanity in being loyal to the environmental activists in their party. It’s possible they just displayed stupidity. Either way, Democrats won’t connect with the Heartland anytime soon if they don’t disappoint the environmental activists from time to time.

Democrats might lose some of their fundraising ability. Then again, it’s also possible that they might gain an appealing message to campaign on.

One of the things that Donald Trump campaigned on was draining the swamp in DC. Lots of people question President-Elect Trump’s ability to do that. Former Minnesota State Sen. Ellen Anderson is the latest person to question Mr. Trump’s ability to drain the swamp. I’d tell Sen. Anderson that it all depends on what you classify as swamp. While researching this post, I found this article that offers a definition for draining the swamp. The article says “At its bottom, drain the swamp is a metaphor: If you drain the swamp, you eliminate the mosquitoes (or snakes and alligators, in other iterations) that breed disease. But, ironically, the original disease the expression referred to was the very thing Trump has built his campaign on: big business. Etymologist Barry Popik has traced drain the swamp back to the socialist movement of the early 20th century. In a 1903 letter to the Daily Northwestern, Winfield R. Gaylord, state organizer of the Social Democratic Party, precursor to Eugene Debs’ Socialist Party of America, wrote: ‘Socialists are not satisfied with killing a few of the mosquitoes which come from the capittalist [sic] swamp; they want to drain the swamp.'”

I’d modify that definition because it omits too many things that are ‘diseased’. What person with a heart thinks that the Veterans Administration isn’t diseased and infected? I triple-dog dare anyone to read this article, then tell me the VA doesn’t need a major overhaul. This article should turn people’s stomachs.

As disgusting as the situation is within the VA, that’s just the tip of the iceberg in terms of draining the swamp in DC. This article highlights some of the corruption within the EPA:

Two EPA employees, Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo and Susan Morris, will be taking EPA back to court to expose its treatment of whistleblowers and the impact on public health and civil rights. Senior former and current officials within EPA will be deposed, such as Ray Spears, former Deputy Chief of Staff to three EPA administrators; Rafael DeLeon, former Director of Civil Rights and Human Resources as well as legal advisor to EPA administrators; and Karen Higginbotham, former Civil Rights Director now a special assistant in the Office of the Administrator. The depositions will cover decades of allegations of corruption at the highest levels of the EPA. Corruption that has, no doubt, placed the public and EPA employees in jeopardy.

The cases, scheduled for trial in the spring will demonstrate how EPA senior officials in key positions used their authority to retaliate against employees who raised prohibited personnel practices and warned of dangers to public health. Dr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo won a significant jury award in her case against EPA a decade ago that resulted in the passage of the 2002 No FEAR Act by Congress. She returned to the agency after her successful case only to face more retaliation and eventual termination of her career.

Progressives have pushed the notion that only big business is corrupt. That’s BS. The truth is that the government is every bit as corrupt.

Here’s hoping that Trump cleans out the corruption in DC. It’s a tall task but it’s something that needs to be finished.

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Sen. John Barrasso is one of the experts on health care in the Senate. This past week, Sen. Barrasso delivered this speech on the Senate floor. The most important part of Sen. Barrasso’s speech came when he said “First of all, nobody is talking about taking people off of insurance without a replacement plan in place. We all understand that there needs to be a transition over time. People have already been hurt too much when they lost their insurance and when their rates went up because of Obamacare and the mandates, and the government saying they know better than families across the country. So we’ll be working to make the transition as smooth as possible for everyone. That’s why we’re including transition period in a repeal bill that Congress passed last year and sent to the president’s desk. Our goal is to do no harm.”

Shortly thereafter, Sen. Barrasso said “Now, we can increase the use of health savings accounts. This will give more people the chance to actually control how they spend their own money on their health care. We can support innovative insurance plans that pay for prescription drugs that work the best for patients – not just the ones preferred by insurance companies.”

The Democrats, specifically Jonathan Gruber, have tried frightening people into thinking that Republicans want to throw 20,000,000 people off of health insurance. Sen. Barrasso’s speech indicates that Democrats are engaged in outright fearmongering.

Sen. Barrasso is a man of integrity. He’s also a health care expert. He’ll be the Republicans’ health care expert in the Senate. He already is.

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This article highlights the ever-growing fight for the Democratic Party’s soul. Throughout the article, the feuding factions are noticeable. It isn’t until the end that the disagreements boil over.

That’s when Nancy Larson, a member of the Minnesota DFL, is quoted as saying the “brilliant ones at top know better. And they come down and say, ‘This is what you do, this is what you say, this is what you have your candidates do, and don’t stray from this.'”

A couple paragraphs earlier, the article quotes Ted Sadler, a Democratic political operative from Georgia, as saying “People just love it when you show up. But for us, there was zero Democratic action in the 8th Congressional District.”

This indicates why Democrats won’t get out of their fight anytime soon:

In Georgia, Sadler said the party was instead obsessed with driving up turnout in Atlanta and its surrounding suburbs at the expense of Democratic-friendly areas in other parts of the state. It was a common refrain among the Democratic strategists interviewed for this story, all of whom said they saw a party that believed it no longer needed rural votes to win elections.

When Democratic officials did show up, Sadler and others said they were ill-equipped for the nuances of a campaign in rural America.

“When they do show up, it’s 22-year-old kids from the Ivy League,” Sadler said. “And they’re telling you what do, as opposed to stopping and listening.”

It isn’t surprising that Democrats lost the Heartland, especially rural America, often by lopsided margins. Democrats kept Nancy Pelosi as their leader in the House. They picked Chuck Schumer as their leader in the Senate. They do whatever Tom Steyer and the Sierra Club order them to do. Democrats are loyal, too, to Silicon Valley and the East and Left coasts.

The thing that the media is missing is that the earth shifted with the last election. In the past, Democrats could get away with saying they’re for high-tech jobs because Republicans didn’t emphasize the importance of blue collar jobs like mining and factory work. The mining industry and manufacturing jobs are getting strangled with regulations. The Democrats don’t know how to talk to those people because, to them, it’s like speaking a foreign language that they’d have to learn against their will.

Finally, the environmental activists’ agenda is the opposite of the mining industry’s agenda. They fit together like oil and water.

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This LTE, written in the form of a resolution, is one of the most idiotic LTEs that the St. Cloud Times has ever published:

This is the only proper response to such stupidity:

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If I got paid $10 for each article I’ve read throughout the years that talked about Nancy Pelosi’s fundraising abilities, I’d be rich. This article mentions it again by saying “Few can match Pelosi as a fundraiser. She is herself the ninth wealthiest member of Congress, a resident of ‘billionaires’ row,’ and is tapped into the party’s most well-heeled donor networks and constituencies on the West Coast.”

Fundraising isn’t what’s holding the Democrats back. President Obama got it right in his final interview with Rolling Stone when he said “there is a cohort of working-class white voters that voted for me in sizable numbers, but that we’ve had trouble getting to vote for Democrats in midterm elections. In this election, [they] turned out in huge numbers for Trump. And I think that part of it has to do with our inability, our failure, to reach those voters effectively.”

There’s a pretty detectable pattern with elections. When President Obama’s name has been on the ballot, he’s won. When President Obama’s agenda is what people have voted on, he’s gotten a shellacking. This ties into Ms. Pelosi because she’s been a loyal foot-soldier for President Obama’s agenda. They’ve been connected at the hip policywise.

Ms. Pelosi and President Obama complained that they just didn’t get their message out. That’s either outright denial or it’s spin. The thing that’s holding the Democrats back is their message. The Democrats’ message sounds elitist. With Obamacare, Democrats said that they knew what’s best for families. Then-Speaker Pelosi infamously said this:

TRANSLATION: You don’t need to know what’s in it. We know what’s best for you.

The Democrats’ losing streak in the House will continue, at minimum, for several more cycles. That’s partly due to their policies and partly due to their messenger. The history is clear. Nancy Pelosi is a control freak who doesn’t connect with white working class voters. She’s a San Francisco liberal elitist. That won’t work when populism is what the people are insisting on.

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When Tucker Carlson interviewed David Cobb, Jill Stein’s campaign manager, about the Wisconsin recount, it quickly turned into a bad joke. Early in the interview, Cobb said that “most importantly, Tucker, what we’re seeing is voting systems that can’t be trusted. What we see is the use of technology that is highly problematic that have been proven to be hacked by security experts so all we’re asking for is a recount in order to confidence in the integrity of the election results.”

Later in the interview, Carlson asked “what is the core justification for putting the country through this”? Cobb replied “Well, what I’m telling you is that there is a legal right to secure confidence in the integrity of the election results. Recounts a very good way to do that.”

Some important points need to be highlighted at this point. First, other than a handful of nutjobs in the Green Party, nobody thinks that the voting systems employed in Wisconsin aren’t trustworthy. That’s verified by the fact that the other political parties didn’t mention election malfeasance or outright hacking. Next, the Wisconsin recount law should require eyewitness testimony that they saw election irregularities. During the interview, Cobb made clear that their complaint was based on professorial testimony saying that malfeasance was “possible.”

Third, recounts shouldn’t be granted if they’re the political equivalent of a fishing expedition. If the police asked a judge for a search warrant of a person of interest’s apartment based on a hunch, which is what Dr. Stein is doing, the judge would tell the detectives to return when they had more than a hunch.

Cobb’s pretending to be worried about election integrity. That’s dishonest. What thoughtful person thinks that possible misfeasance is justification for a recount. It’s my recommendation that states tighten up their recount statutes ASAP.

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This Miami Herald editorial is a fantastic example of the Agenda Media pretending to be thoughtful journalists and policy experts. I’ll be blunt. The Miami Herald is neither. They’re a pro-Obamacare cheerleader.

That was obvious when they said “On the one hand, Republicans in Congress want to scrap Obamacare, simple as that. On the other, Mr. Trump now says he wants to keep the part of the law that prohibits insurance companies from discriminating against people with pre-existing conditions. And he also likes the provision that allows parents to keep grown children on their policies until the age of 26.” It doesn’t require a rocket scientist to figure it out that some parts of the ACA are popular, even worthwhile. Likewise, it doesn’t require a rocket scientist to figure out that some provisions in the ACA are counterproductive.

For instance, the provision that provided for annual bailouts of insurance companies should’ve been a giant red flag that the ACA would bankrupt the insurance companies without that provision. Another provision eliminates risk as a factor for determining premiums. What idiot thinks it’s possible for insurance companies to sell health insurance to the 60-year-old guy who’s had 3 heart attacks at the same price as the 30-year-old guy whose biggest medical bill came when he scraped his knee on the playground when he was in fifth grade?

Here’s additional proof that the Miami Herald is pro-Democrat cheerleading mouthpiece:

Salvaging this and other essential provisions while scrapping Obamacare would be the legislative equivalent of squaring the circle. There is no clear path to “repeal and replace” because Republicans have never bothered to sit down with Democrats to figure out how to improve the law that everyone, including President Obama himself, concedes is far from perfect.

Actually, this isn’t that complicated. Here in Minnesota, we had a fantastic system until the ACA shredded that system. To keep premiums low and insured rates high while making sure that people with pre-existing conditions got insurance, Minnesota set up a high-risk pool. People with pre-existing conditions bought insurance that was subsidized on a sliding scale. The less you made, the more the insurance was subsidized.

In 2007, Minnesota’s effective insured rate was 96.5%. Because these high-risk people were separated from the healthier people, the healthier people’s health insurance premiums were significantly lower than they are today.

Then there’s this:

Its essential functions are working as intended. More than 16 million Americans have gained health insurance.

That’s true but misleading:

A new study by Jonathan Gruber, one of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) chief economic architects, suggests that roughly two-thirds of new Medicaid enrollees in 2014 were eligible for the program under previous state eligibility criteria—meaning that they were not made eligible by the ACA. If accurate, then a much smaller share of new Medicaid enrollees were made eligible for the program by the ACA than Washington experts commonly believe.

More people signed up because the application process got streamlined prior to the ACA’s passage. That’s proof that the Democrats’ fearmongering has already started. Republicans just need to do what’s right and things will work out fine for them.

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Rep. Tim Ryan, (D-OH), has run an aggressive campaign against Nancy Pelosi. Whether he wins (odds are against him winning) or not, Rep. Ryan has highlighted what political analysts have known for eight years: that the Democratic Party isn’t a healthy, thriving national party.

Thanks to the Democrats’ humiliating defeats in 2010, 2014 and 2016, the Democrats’ bench is thinner than the Vikings offensive line. Put differently, the list of rising stars in the Democratic Party is virtually non-existent. This WSJ article highlights what’s gone wrong with the Democratic Party. It opens by saying “Nancy Pelosi has led Democrats to four straight defeats in elections to control the U.S. House, which explains why Republicans are endorsing her to stay as Minority Leader. She finally has a challenger in Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan in a secret-ballot vote on Wednesday, but the party’s weakness in Congress runs deeper than its leadership.”

Democrats are making the mistake of thinking their problems are identity-based. They aren’t. Their problems started multiplying when they went exotic. First, it was the anti-war protests. Next, it was Occupy Wall Street, aka OWS. After that, they worshipped at the altar of Black Lives Matter. Periodically throughout their demise, Democrats told the American people that climate change was a bigger threat to national security than al-Qa’ida, then ISIS.

It isn’t surprising that people in America’s heartland took one look at Democrats and determined that Democrats are nuts. Nancy Pelosi is the perfect leader for such a political party.

This patronage system has helped Mrs. Pelosi build support among the Congressional Black and Hispanic caucuses, which will make up an estimated 70 of the 194 Democrats seats next year. Democrats also don’t have term limits for committee chairs, which has frozen young members out of influence. All of this has magnified the caucus’s insularity and its swing to the political left.

Democrats won the House in 2006 by recruiting moderates to run in competitive districts. Mrs. Pelosi then forced them to walk the plank on the stimulus, cap and trade and ObamaCare. The centrist Blue Dog coalition has lost three-fourths of its Members since 2010.

This morning on CNN’s New Day, Rep. Debbie Dingell sang Pelosi’s praises, insisting that she’s a great listener and that she’s helped unify the Democratic Party. The Democrats are unified in the sense that the only ones left are the Black Lives Matter wing of the Democratic Party and wholly-owned subsidiaries of the environmental activist wing of the Democratic Party.

We’ll know that the Republicans’ winning streak has continued if these are the faces of the Democratic Party:

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Dr. Jill Stein’s campaign suffered a significant defeat in court Tuesday when a judge ruled that counties didn’t need to do a hand recount. Stein suffered that defeat when “Dane County Circuit Judge Valerie Bailey-Rihn said the effort to force the hand recount” hadn’t met “the state’s legal standard for prohibiting the use of machines in the recount, saying that the two campaigns did not show a hand recount, though more thorough, was necessary or show there was a clear and convincing evidence of fraud or other problems.”

The lawsuit was destined to fail because it was based virtually entirely on hypothetical possibilities, not verifiable proof. According to the USA Today article, “Stein campaign brought forward a series of experts in statistics and computer science who argued for a hand recount by describing a series of hypothetical ways that computer hackers might reprogram voting machines.”

Stein’s attorneys tried putting their best spin on the ruling:

Debbie Greenberger, an attorney for the Stein campaign, said she was uncertain whether their side would appeal but said she hoped county clerks would heed the judge’s praise for a hand recount.

Fat chance with that. A hand recount would be lengthy. A machine recount would be significantly faster.

The Stein recount ‘machine’ just broke down.

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