Friday, February 05, 2016

Happy Reagan's Birthday! 105th Anniversary of One of Our Greatest Presidents is Reminder of What We Can Do

As you prepare to vote in the upcoming presidential primaries ask yourself: what would Reagan do?

Friday evening I am speaking at a special Reagan Birthday event presented by the Beaufort Federation of Republican Men. Here's a preview of what I may say. It's based on my own personal experience with the Reagan Revolution.

Then Governor Reagan and George H.W. Bush accept the
GOP nomination in Detroit July 17, 1980. Here's Reagan's speech.
I first met Governor and Nancy Reagan in Fountain Square Cincinnati in May 1980. This was prior to the Ohio primary and after George H.W. Bush had dropped out of the race. A friend and I were able to walk right up to the Reagan's as they arrived and welcome them. Later, on the ropeline after Reagan's speech I watched as my friend shook Reagan's hand and told him to "pick Bush" for Vice President.

Imagine my surprise when as a Youth Delegate to the Republican National Convention in Detroit a few months later that Reagan did just that. And what a thrill it was to be in the Joe Louis Arena on that magic night.

Six months later I was in Washington to witness the Inauguration of President Reagan. Jump ahead to October 1982 when I volunteered to assist the White House prepare for a presidential trip to Columbus, Ohio. I was the driver for Secret Service agent Tim McCarthy who was wounded in the assassination attempt on Reagan's life in March 1981. McCarthy used his body to shield Reagan from what might have been the fatal shot.

In 1984 I organized Students for Reagan Bush at Bowling Green State University. Our group had asked an Ohio Congressman to speak on behalf of President Reagan but the congressman said "why not get President Reagan?" We jumped at the chance. It was the first event held on a college campus and the President's team was no doubt concerned about the reaction but they need not have worried. The energy in Anderson Arena was electric and it was packed to the rafters with enthusiastic student supporters.

Thousands of enthusiastic students crammed Anderson Arena at Bowling Green State University September 26, 1984
 to hear President Reagan speak on world affairs and how peace through strength works. Speech here.
Three weeks later I took the following photograph at a Whistlestop tour of Ohio. The famous "U.S. No. 1" train car, now resides in the Gold Coast Railroad Museum in Miami, Florida.

Lit by torchlight this train tour was one of the last whistlestops that were so much a part of
20th Century presidential campaigns. This stop was in Perrysburg Ohio October 12, 1984.
Text of Reagan's remarks (sixth item here) still holds true today. 
A few months later I was back in Washington again for the second Inauguration. Temperatures were at zero so the outdoor swearing in took place indoors. And few were outside to watch the Inaugural fireworks in the snow. It was an incredible sight. Flares circled the Washington Monument and it appeared as if the Monument was a rocket blasting into space!

Three years went by until I left Columbia University in New York City where I was doing postgraduate study in national security and government affairs to work in the White House Political Office during the 1988 presidential election. Long hours spent drafting correspondence and coordinating events was punctuated by visits to the White House lawn to wave goodbye to the Reagan's as they departed on the Helicopter or welcome visiting dignitaries.

Highlights from that time:

First, the arrival of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for a final State Visit. All the stops were pulled out. I took this picture after Mrs. Thatcher reviewed the honor guard:

British Prime Minister thanks military representative following Honor Guard review.
This was the final State Visit by Margaret Thatcher on November 16, 1988.
Another favorite photo. Me with the boss after a fundraiser at a Washington hotel. Earlier I posed with other
staff members with a lifesize cardboard Reagan that was popular with tourists at the time. I told the
President: "I hope this comes out better than the one with the cardboard president." He laughed.
President Reagan visit's Mike's America's hometown of Bowling Green Ohio October 19, 1988 (speech here).
I suggested the trip and was pleased to help coordinate it. A bonus was that my parents got to meet the President.
Win One More for the Gipper

Finally, the day after the November election (Bush won in case you forgot) the President asked the White House staff to gather in the Rose Garden to say thanks for all our hard work. It was a beautiful fall day. Remembering how Reagan used the phrase "win one more for the Gipper" (a reference to his classic movie role as George Gip in 'Knute Rockne All American'-video clip) Yours truly shouted out "that was one for the Gipper" as the President turned to leave. He smiled and then proceeded to tell us all another of those classic Gipper stories. The Reagan Library provided me with this clip. Cue the player to the 2 minute mark to get the warmup for my interuption at 2:40:

Reagan Farewell Address: Solid Accomplishments That Stand the Test of Time

In his last address from the Oval Office President Reagan remarks on the achievements of the Reagan Revolution. It's worth a look if you haven't seen it:

As you get ready to vote this year ask yourself "what would Reagan do" then go out and WIN ONE MORE FOR THE GIPPER!

P.S. Thanks to the Republican men and women of Beaufort for their warm and gracious welcome. It was like a reunion of old friends taking a walk down memory lane!

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Jimmy Carter Endorses Trump. Calls Him "Completely Malleable"

How do Trump fans explain THIS?

From Politico: “I think I would choose Trump, which may surprise some of you,” the former Democratic president said during an appearance at Britain’s House of Lords on Wednesday afternoon. He was asked who he would pick for the GOP nomination.

“The reason is, Trump has proven already he’s completely malleable,” Carter explained. “I don’t think he has any fixed [positions] he’d go the White House and fight for. On the other hand, Ted Cruz is not malleable. He has far-right wing policies he’d pursue if he became president.”
Oh Oh!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Mike's America's Endorsement for South Carolina GOP Presidential Primary

With so many fine choices it's been a tough decision to make!

I got a call from the Bernie Sanders people on Tuesday. Apparently the phone number for the landline I have was once owned by a Democrat. I played along with the caller like a cat does with a mouse. I wanted to hear how far they would go with the Bernie giveaway spiel. Finally I drew the line when the caller pointed out Bernie's strong position on climate change. I informed her that I had worked for the Environmental Protection Agency and had been following this issue for many years. I went on to point out that despite all the scaremongering, the sky hasn't fallen as Al Gore and the rest swore it would by now if we didn't act. CO2 has gone up but the temperature has not. Fewer hurricanes, not more. After that spanking I let her go.

Bernie doesn't stand a chance to either get the Dem nomination or win the general election if he did. Remember George McGovern? I do.

Now, back to more serious business.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker was my early favorite but he bombed out. That left me considering two others, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. Rubio has a certain Reaganesque quality when he talks about America and has certainly become an impressive candidate. Long gone are the days when he looked like a deer caught in the headlights delivering the Republican response to the State of the Union Address and pausing to take a drink of water (video). His focus and presentation in the debates has been masterful. And most pundits agree with me that he delivered the best speech from Iowa on Caucus night. For me, he has the best grasp of foreign policy and national security.

But there's one thing I can't get past and that was his big flip flop on immigration amnesty. He ran as a Tea Party candidate for Senate in 2010 repeatedly swearing he would never support amnesty. Fox's Megyn Kelly played the video clips at last week's debate. The bill he co-sponsored would have granted immediate legal status, or amnesty, for illegal immigrants.

Now Rubio says that he understands that border security must come first. Something most of us understood all throughout the debate on immigration policy. After the immigration amnesty debacle in 2006 Senator John McCain personally told Mike's America in 2007 that he understood border security had to come first. But McCain joined Rubio in the 2013 bill that did exactly the opposite.

Having been burned once by McCain, I am reluctant to trust Marco Rubio who also says he has learned his lesson. Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Mike's America Endorses Ted Cruz!

The most reliable conservative and the most unapologetic fighter for conservative principles is Ted Cruz. I will vote for him in the South Carolina GOP presidential primary on February 20. After eight long years of Obama's excesses we need a fighter who won't compromise but will seek to rollback Obama's hard left agenda. Cruz is that man.

There are some who say he can't win. These same naysayers might have said the same thing about Reagan in 1980. With a weak candidate like Hillary Clinton, I believe any Republican can win if they stop playing with the same failed GOP consultant rulebook that sent both McCain and Romney to defeat. Democrats know how to target their key voters while Republicans ignore their base and scurry after harder to get votes. If they correct that mistake and target the handful of key states upon which victory depends with a more effective ground game there's no reason Hillary, or any Democrat can't be beaten.

So, I follow the William F. Buckley Jr. rule and support the most conservative candidate who can beat the Democrats: Ted Cruz.

I know he has a tough slog ahead in New Hampshire and here in South Carolina but my vote and support isn't predicated on whether he can win every contest but whether he should!

Finally, I restate my pledge to support whoever the GOP nominee is. I challenge fellow GOP voters to do the same. If you can't then, please don't try and persuade me to support your candidate. We either win this together or we lose.

Here's my column for the local newspaper:
Voters face stark choice for change or more of the same

Voters in Iowa had their say. Soon, voters in New Hampshire will have theirs. On Saturday, February 20 South Carolina will hold the GOP presidential primary. The following Saturday Democrats hold theirs.

The choice between parties, like candidates, is as stark as it ever has been. Vote for one of the Democrats and expect more of the same empty promises and failed results. A vote for a Republican is the best chance for a new way forward. The choice you will make will have a direct bearing on how well you live your life.

Last month my Democrat counterpart in this space talked about Democratic values without being very specific and claimed somehow that they were more “mainstream.” Lotz said their candidate’s “values are America's values.” Always good for chuckle is our Mr. Lotz.

He cited immigration as one example. By that, Democrats mean an open borders policy with amnesty for all illegals currently in the country. Is it any wonder comedians call today’s illegals “undocumented Democrats!” Also big on the Lotz list was “freedom of religion.” For whom? Muslims perhaps but have you seen how Obama and the Democrats attack Christians at every available opportunity? They even struck references to God from the Democrat 2012 platform.

Gun safety was another item on the Lotz list. Who can oppose safety right? But none of the Democrat proposals in the wake of tragic shootings would have stopped those shootings. And under Obama, prosecutions and convictions of those committing gun crimes has gone down. Just as it is with immigration, the problem isn’t the need for new laws, but the lack of enforcement of existing law.

To watch the Democrat’s debate (hidden on a Saturday night) or listen to one of their candidates speak you would hear an endless litany of what is wrong with America and how so many voters are little more than victims who need an all powerful government to take care of them.

Democrats claim to care. I get it. But who doesn’t? The problem isn’t with the plethora of promises they make, the problem is that year after year they continue to fail to achieve results. During the Obama years this failure has been particularly agonizing for groups that Democrats say they care most about: African Americans and the Middle Class.

Among African Americans, who have been promised the most, both the crime rate and poverty have gone up, median household income has gone down, the wealth gap with white America has gotten bigger and unemployment continues to be much higher. Things are not much better for the Middle Class.

Under Obama the rich have gotten richer while the rest of us either tread water or sink. Meanwhile, prosecutions of Wall Street criminals have dropped. Tell me again which party is the party of the rich?

Democrats had majority control of both houses of congress and the White House the first two years of Obama’s presidency and the GOP didn’t take control of the Senate until a year ago. You can’t blame Democrat’s failure on Republicans.

But what are Republican values? Friday is the 105th anniversary of the birth of Ronald Reagan. The Beaufort Federation of Republican Men has invited me to speak at a benefit dinner that evening. It causes me to reflect on the timeless values that Ronald Reagan and the GOP embody.

President Reagan believed in the fundamental goodness of the American people. America is a “shining city on a hill” not a place of despair or systemic injustice. Reagan understood that getting government out of our way and off our backs was the key to a more prosperous society fairer to all. Remember his words “government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.”

He demonstrated that “peace through strength” works and won the Cold War and ended the threat of nuclear Armageddon. Democrats fought him every step of the way.

Any of the current GOP candidates represents a better chance to repair the damage done by Obama’s wishful thinking and far left ideology. 

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Last Polls Before Iowa Votes Shows Trump with Lead, BUT....

Still plenty of room for a surprise or two!

From Real Clear Politics:

What Are Iowa Voters Thinking About Before Vote?

This page at Google is an interesting window into what Iowa voters are thinking as the Caucus Night approaches. It catalogs Google search results regarding the various candidates from Internet users in Iowa.

Look beyond the stats for each candidate and see what information voters are looking for. Here's a sample:

Also included are the top issues voters are searching for in regard to that candidate. These searches reveal the candidate's strengths and weaknesses if you're prepared to read the tea leaves!

Ready to make your prediction? Who will win? Who will surprise us?

Monday, January 25, 2016

If Black Trump Supporter in Atlanta is More Than a Fluke Dems are in Serious Trouble!

Too soon to know for sure!

Transcript from The American Mirror: “Trump gives me real hope and change, not fake hope and change. I’m voting for America because I believe in America.

“I never thought I’d be saying these words about the country. Democrats don’t speak about the country but I’ve woken up, I’ve seen the truth and the truth is Trump, I believe in this guy to make our country better because our country is going to hell!

“My daughter can’t find a job, she’s a college graduate. Black men are 50% unemployed. Our borders are wide open. I love everybody don’t get me wrong, but we have to close our borders.

“Trump is speaking the truth and that is why I’m here.”

The woman went on to add that, “Democrats are crazy — I can’t believe I thought that way.” She said her husband supports Bernie Sanders and that she told him, “If he don’t vote for Trump, we’re getting a divorce.”
It seems that more black voters are beginning to realize the damage Obama's presidency has done to their economic well being. Among African Americans the poverty rate has gone up, median household income has gone down, the wealth gap with white America has gotten bigger and unemployment continues to be much higher.

Tavis Smiley sums it up:
On every leading economic issue, in the leading economic issues Black Americans have lost ground in every one of those leading categories. So in the last ten years it hasn’t been good for black folk. This is the president’s most loyal constituency that didn’t gain any ground in that period.
Blacks have been given crumbs kicked from Obama's table while his rich white campaign contributors have been raking it in. And while blacks are getting hosed, the Obama Administration has protected Wall Street criminals from prosecution.

If black voters ever realize they are better off joining with Middle Class white America in supporting a GOP alternative to the crony capitalism represented by Obama and Hillary it's over for Democrats in 2016 and well beyond!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Echoes of John Bohener: Donald Trump Admits We Need to "Get to be a Little Establishment," and "Make Deals" with Dems

Trump gives clearest warning yet that he would not govern as a conservative if elected!

The GOP establishment told voters in 2010 that if we just gave them control of the House of Representatives they would stop Obama. In 2014 they said if we would give them control of the Senate they would stop Obama. In both cases, they not only failed to stop Obama they continued to give in to nearly everything Obama demanded.

Now we're told that if we elect a Republican President we can finally turn the tide. Really? Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Fool me a third time?

Donald Trump visited Las Vegas on Thursday and talked about the establishment:

"We've got to get along with people."

TRUMP: And you know what, there’s a point at which, let’s get to be a little bit establishment, because we gotta get things done, folks, okay? Believe me, don’t worry, we’re gonna get such great deals, but at a certain point, you can’t be so strident, you can’t not get along, we gotta get along with people.
"We got to get along with people." Sound familiar? The old "go along to get along" call of the GOP establishment!

Despite the fact they failed to achieve their stated goals, at least Boehner, Ryan and McConnell express a set of core conservative principles. But does Trump share those principles or express any consistent set of beliefs other than promising to "make great deals?" Can you take that to the bank?

I just wonder how some of the same Trump supporters who condemned GOP deal making done by Speaker Boehner and Speaker Ryan will react to this news that Trump intends to make deals with that same establishment. How many more times do you want to be fooled?

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

#Blacklivesmatter Blocks SF Bridge at Rush Hour. They Believe Their Rights Are More Important Than Yours!

All they will get is slap on the wrist. Imagine if the Tea Party did this!

On MLK Day on San Francisco Bay Bridge. Is this how Martin Luther King would want to be remembered?
Family stuck on the SF Bay Bridge. Their rights are less important than that of the protesters!
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie faced a huge investigation when traffic on New York City's George Washington Bridge was slowed. Don't expect Black Lives Matter to be held to the same standard. It's all done with a wink and a nod by Democrats who want blacks angry so they will vote for Democrats in November.

The bridge was closed for half an hour after protesters chained their cars to together. Thousands of commuters were left stranded unable to get to their destinations. But that's doesn't matter to the crowd that puts it's lives, it's rights, above all others. This is fascism and it's bought and paid for by Obama!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Inspector General Finds Hillary Emails DID Contain Classified/Highly Classified Material

Not that this is news to anyone but Democrats!

In a January 14 letter to Congress the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community finds that what Hillary and her defenders have been saying about her email problem is not true. No surprise there!

Hillary has been sucking up to Obama lately in debates and speeches. There may be two reasons for this. One, to blunt the appeal of Bernie Sanders among Obama diehards in early primary states and two, to hope that Obama will quash possible prosecution of Hillary for mishandling classified information. But with up to 150 FBI agents working to investigate Hillary's emails and possible corruption at the Clinton Foundation that's a lot for even Obama to cover up!

John Kasich Moves Into Second Place in New Hampshire

Does this signal a wider move by moderate Republicans?

If you were expecting things to shake up as the time for balloting nears you may not be disappointed. This result from American Research Group (full results here) suggests Ohio Governor John Kasich might not be as dead in the water as many have assumed.  This poll has a sample size of 600 telephone interviews. In a smaller state like New Hampshire that's a pretty good sample. It comes on the heels of other polls which also see a trend in Kasich's favor. From Real Clear Politics:

This goes to show that anyone who tells you the race is over before it's begun may be in for a surprise!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Has Bush PAC Ad/Mailing Blitz in South Carolina Paid Off with Bush Move to Third Place in Palmetto State?

For Jeb Bush, it's good news to be third!

I have been getting a mountain of mail and many phone calls from the political action committee working on behalf of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush. Here's a sample of the recent mailings, all very expensive:

A sample of the Jeb Bush mail blitz arriving at Mike's America.
From the other candidates I've received a half page card from Cruz and a Christmas card from Donald Trump. On top of the mail blitz, you can hardly turn on the television without seeing a Bush ad.

Lately, the mailings and ads have been overwhelmingly negative on Rubio. There have been few polls taken in South Carolina for the GOP race but Opinion Savvy has been polling throughout the season and uses large samples which give the best results. In their January poll taken after the GOP debate in Charleston Bush has moved 3 points up from the December poll and overtaken Rubio for third place.  Don't let anyone tell you negative ads don't work!

Here's the January result:
Trump: 32%
Cruz: 18%
Bush: 13%
Rubio: 11%
Carson: 9%
Christie: 4%
Fiorina: 3%
Huckabee: 2%
Kasich: 2%
Paul: 2%
Santorum: 1%
Undecided: 3%

Bush's plan is to knock out Rubio and then represent himself as the better qualified alternative to Trump and Cruz. Will it work? Jeb's PAC still has a pile of money to spend
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