Wednesday, October 31, 2007
The chickens are coming home to roost!
Here's a slice of Hillary's bid to avoid answering any tough questions by attacking President Bush (from NYTimes debate transcript):
- "I have stood against George Bush and his failed policies. "
- "I have been standing against the Republicans, George Bush and Dick Cheney."
- "the irresponsible spending policies of George Bush and the Republican Congress. "
- "George Bush had no authority to take any military action in Iran."
- "which is we've got to do everything we can to prevent George Bush and the Republicans from doing something on their own to take offensive military action against Iran. "
- "we reject and do not believe George Bush has any authority to do anything else."
- "I think that what we're trying to do here is put pressure on the Bush administration. Joe's absolutely right -- George Bush can do all of this without anybody. You know, that's the great tragedy, and that's why we've got to rein him in."
- "Everybody agrees up here that President Bush has made a total mess out of the situation with Iran."
- "it is abundantly clear that President Bush does not intend to end the war while he is still president."
- "We need a lot of Americans trying to fan out across the world following President Bush because he's going to leave so many problems."
- "160,000 troops that George Bush has there [in Iraq] today."
- "We've got to turn the page on George Bush and Dick Cheney."
- "[T]he Supreme Court handed the presidency to George Bush."
- "I put fiscal responsibility first, because we have to change the Bush tax cuts, which I am committed to doing. "
- "George Bush understood that, the Republicans understood that. They wanted to decimate that balanced budget and a surplus because they knew that that would give them a free hand to try to privatize Social Security."
- "[A] president who actually believed in Social Security, which George Bush does not."
- "You know, my view is we go toward fiscal responsibility, which is hard. It's not going to be easy inheriting what we're going to be inheriting from Bush and the Republicans."
- "we might even have to look at the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which the Bush administration has been filling up beyond any expectation of need."
- "We have the average American family losing $1,000 in income, and George Bush and his cronies can't figure out how they can give even more tax cuts to the wealthiest of Americans."
- "I said that I'm in favor of doing something about the ATM [editor: Alternative Minimum Tax, or ATM machine for government free spending]. How we do it and how we put the package together, everybody knows, is extremely complicated. It's not going to happen while George Bush is president."
- "We have failed, and George Bush has failed." [on Immigration]
- "It's just outrageous that under President Bush, the National Institutes of Health has been basically decreased in funding."
President Bush's name came up in the debate 40 times! More than half of those mentions were by Hillary, sometimes twice in the same answer.
Newsflash to Hillary: President Bush isn't running in 2008. Don't you think you need to come up with some policies YOU would impelement if elected? Thus far, all we've heard from you is a laundry list of new spending which stands at $763 Billion as of October 17. So much for fiscal responsbility.
The only name that came up in candidate answers that even came close to Bush was that of Hillary Clinton, mentioned 18 times by the other candidates.
Hillary Dodges the Tough Questions & Missteps on Immigration
--Hillary Continued A Strategy Of "Avoiding Direct Answers To Questions." "[S]he continued her strategy of avoiding direct answers to questions: She wouldn't say how she would address Social Security; she declined to pledge whether she would stop Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, or say whether she supports giving driver's licenses to illegal immigrants." (Nedra Pickler, "Clinton Gets No Love In Democrats Debate," The Associated Press, 10/31/07)
--The Politico's Roger Simon: "In a debate against six Democratic opponents at Drexel University here Tuesday, Clinton gave the worst performance of her entire campaign....It was that for two hours she dodged and weaved, parsed and stonewalled." (Roger Simon, Op-Ed, "Obama, Edwards Attack; Clinton Bombs Debate," The Politico, 10/31/07)
--Time's Mark Halperin: "The failure of her performance was cumulative ...More defensive than usual, and at times too political and too hot tempered. Borderline disastrous moment at the end when she gave an equivocal answer about drivers licenses for illegal immigrants in New York ..." (Mark Halperin, "Hillary Clinton, Grade: C-," Time.com, 10/31/07)
--NBC Political Director Chuck Todd: "I think she got stuck when she tries very hard not to answer specifics...[I] think she was trying to figure out a way to have it both ways. I hate to put it in those terms but I think that's what she was trying....Clinton increasingly got worse as the night went on." (MSNBC's "Hardball," 10/30/07)
--ABC's George Stephanopoulos: "I do believe Hillary lost last night." (ABC's "Good Morning America," 10/31/07)
--MSNBC's Chris Matthews: "Hillary Clinton would not answer the question straight." (MSNBC's "Hardball," 10/30/07)
--Newsweek's Howard Fineman: "At the very end of the debate, she just came off like a politician who didn't want to answer the question." (MSNBC's "Hardball," 10/30/07)
--The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza: "[S]he did struggle toward the end of the debate in a question about her support (or lack thereof) for Gov. Eliot Spitzer's (D) plan to offer driver's licenses for illegal immigrants." (Chris Cillizza, "Democratic Debate Wrap Up: Clinton Under Attack," The Washington Post's "The Fix" Blog, blog.washingtonpost.com, 10/30/07)
--ABC's "The Note": "It was almost certainly Clinton's weakest performance of the cycle..." (ABC's "The Note," 10/31/07)
--NBC's "First Read": "[Hillary] got weaker as the night went on. The exchange over driver's licenses for illegal immigrants allowed her opponents to drive home a narrative that has begun to develop for Clinton at these debates: that she never actually answers the tough questions." (NBC's "First Read," 10/31/07)
--The Des Moines Register's David Yepsen: "Hillary Clinton ... did not have a good night...She turned in an uneven, sometimes waffling performance." (David Yepsen, Op-Ed, "Johnny Be Good," The Des Moines Register, 10/30/07)
OUCH! That's gotta hurt!
Senator Barack Obama, Governor Bill Richardson, Senator Hillary Clinton and Ruth Harkin stand during the national anthem at Senator Tom Harkin's Iowa Steak Fry.
First it was odd when B. Hussein Obama went out of his way to mention that he stopped wearing an American flag pin on his lapel.
Now, he stands with hands folded as the National Anthem is played at an event in Iowa.
Is he running for President of the Hate America Party?
Maybe someone should ask him at the next debate if he can recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
Why doesn't he just go all the way and start saluting this flag:
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
This deeply flawed treaty is now reaching a critical stage in the U.S. Senate.
If you haven't contacted your Senator regarding this issue, now is the time.
Senator Jim DeMint, South Carolina's reliably conservative Senator is out front on this issue as well. Read what he has to say here.
The bottom line: President Reagan opposed this treaty when it first came up. Nothing has changed since then.
What would Reagan do? Defeat this treaty! Call your Senator NOW!
U.S. President George W. Bush (C) makes a statement while flanked by (L-R) Minority Deputy Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO), Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Chairman of the Republican Conference Adam Putnam (R-FL) on the North Portico of the White House October 30, 2007
President Bush Urges Congress to Pass Appropriations BillsDems Would Rather Fight than Work Together with GOP
White House transcript
October 30, 2007
THE PRESIDENT: ...Congress is not getting its work done. We're near the end of the year, and there really isn't much to show for it. The House of Representatives has wasted valuable time on a constant stream of investigations, and the Senate has wasted valuable time on an endless series of failed votes to pull our troops out of Iraq. And yet there's important work to be done on behalf of the American people.
They have not been able to send a single annual appropriations bill to my desk, and that's the worst record for a Congress in 20 years. One of the important responsibilities of the Congress is to pass appropriations bills. And yet the leadership that's on the Hill now cannot get that job done.
They've also passed an endless series of tax increases. You know, they proposed tax increases in the farm bill, the energy bill, the small business bill, and of course, the SCHIP bill. They haven't seen a bill they could not solve without shoving a tax hike into it. In other words, they believe in raising taxes, and we don't.
Spending is skyrocketing under their leadership -- at least proposed spending is skyrocketing under their leadership. After all, they're trying to spend an additional $205 billion over the next five years. Some have said, well, that doesn't matter much; it's not that much money. Well, $205 billion over the next five years in the real world amounts to this: $4.7 million per hour, every hour, for every day, for the next five years. That's a lot of money.
And that doesn't even include spending that would actually pay for 2 million people to move from private health insurance to an inefficient, lower-quality, government-run program. Despite knowing it does not have a chance of becoming law, the Senate will now take up the second SCHIP bill the House passed last week. I believe the Senate is wasting valuable time. This bill, remarkably, manages to spend more money over five years than the first bill did.
After going alone and going nowhere, Congress should instead work with the administration on a bill that puts poor children first; a bill that will take care of the poor children that the initial bill said we got to do; a bill that would stop diverting money to adults. You realize some major states in the United States spend more money on adults than they do on children? We want a bill that enrolls the more than 500,000 poor children currently eligible for the program who are not a part of the program.
[A]gain ask Congress to send me a clean Veterans funding bill that we have already agreed to by Veterans Day, so we can keep America's promise to those who have defended our freedom and are recovering from injury. I again urge them to pass a clean Defense appropriations bill, and a war supplemental bill to fund our troops in combat.
I know some on the Democrat side didn't agree with my decision to send troops in, but it seems like we ought to be able to agree that we're going to support our troops who are in harm's way. I know the members feel that way, standing with me. I hope the leadership feels that way, and they ought to give me a bill that funds, among other things, bullets, and body armor, and protection against IEDs, and mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles. It would be irresponsible to not give our troops the resources they need to get their job done because Congress was unable to get its job done.
New Congress at war over everythingMeanwhile, Congress Approval Rating Sinks LOWER!
By: Patrick O'Connor
Oct 30, 2007
In a closed-door meeting before the last vote on the children’s health care bill, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer appealed for the support of about 30 wavering Republican lawmakers. What he got instead was a tongue-lashing, participants said.
The GOP lawmakers, all of whom had expressed interest in a bipartisan deal on the SCHIP legislation, were furious that the Democratic leader from Maryland had not reached out to them in a more serious way early on. They also criticized him and Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel of Illinois for failing to stop his allies outside Congress from running attack ads in their districts, while they were discussing a bipartisan deal.
The result was a predictable one for this bitterly divided Congress. The House vote for a second SCHIP bill was a healthy majority, but not the two-thirds needed to override another veto vowed by President Bush. Only one Republican switched his vote — to oppose the measure.
Democrats accused Republicans of hurting kids. Republicans howled about a heavy-handed, uncompromising Democratic majority. And another chance at bipartisan consensus slipped away.
“They spent $1.5 million through their various shill outreach groups attacking me and a handful of my colleagues,” Rep. Ric Keller (R-Fla.) said before the Hoyer meeting, “but they did not spend five minutes to approach me to ask for my vote.”
This us-against-them mentality has been an ongoing storyline of the new Democratic-controlled Congress. On the big items — Iraq, health care and spending — party leaders have shunned compromise.
Rush Limbaugh has a higher approval rating in Nevada than Democrat Majority Reader Senator Harry Reid. In California, even Senator Dianne Feinstein (a responsible legislator by comparison to Sen. Barbara Boxer and Pelosi) is tanking along with Pelosi and Boxer (full size poll graphic here).
Needed: An Aggressive GOP Campaign for 2008
By now, the damage of a do nothing but investigate, spend and raise taxes Congress should be clear to even the most "principled" conservative voter.
What's needed is a long term, coordinated campaign at every level of political discourse to highlight the weaknesses of Democrats. It wouldn't hurt to put forward a renewed version of the 1994 "Contract with America" based on conservative values.
One thing we learned in 2006: A weak response invites defeat. And the costs are too high to permit that mistake to remain uncorrected!
Sunday, October 28, 2007
No, this isn't a Halloween seance. It's bits from the book "Write It When I'm Gone" by Thomas DeFrank.
As reported in the New York Daily News here and here.
On Bill Clinton: A new book on the late 38th President reveals he had strong views about the Clintons: He thought Hillary wore the pants and that Bill couldn't keep his zipped.No accountability, no admission that Bill, or Hillary for that matter, ever did or do anything wrong. Seems we've heard that before.... right here at Mike's America.
"He's sick - he's got an addiction. He needs treatment," Ford told Daily News Washington Bureau Chief Thomas M. DeFrank, author of "Write It When I'm Gone: Remarkable Off-the-Record Conversations with Gerald R. Ford."
he considered Clinton a foreign-policy wimp, and sensed that he hadn't learned from mistakes in his personal life - allegations of womanizing that dogged him during the campaign for the White House.
That opinion was based on behavior Ford witnessed the weekend he hosted the Clintons in Colorado.
"I'll tell you one thing: He didn't miss one good-looking skirt at any of the social occasions," Ford said later.
"He's got a wandering eye, I'll tell you that. Betty had the same impression; he isn't very subtle about his interest."
After the House voted to impeach Clinton but before the Senate's decision on whether to convict him, the sitting President phoned the ex-President.
"He said he needed my help and wanted to know if I could help," Ford recalled not long after.
Ford had written two Op-Ed pieces in which he called for Clinton to admit he had lied to federal investigators in exchange for censure over impeachment.
He told Clinton that he would help him, if he agreed to such a deal.
"Bill I think you have to admit that you lied. If you do that, I think that will help - and I'll help you. If you'll admit to perjury, I'll do more," he said.
"I won't do that," Clinton told him. "I can't do that."
Ford was stunned by Clinton's lack of contrition. "It's a character flaw," he concluded.
Giuliani is GOP's best shot against Hillary, said Ford: Jerry Ford wasn't sure Hillary Clinton could be elected President, but he was absolutely certain which Republican had the strongest shot at stopping her: Rudy Giuliani.The downside of that is that Ford's opinion is hardly compelling in a GOP contest where many view Rudy as the choice of Country Club Republicans.
"That would be a great contest between Hillary and Rudy," the 92-year-old former President told a reporter in May 2006.
"I think Giuliani is an electrifying guy," he added. "He's a great speaker. He's had a good record of winning in New York City, and he can be tough."
Officially, he remained scrupulously neutral in the 2008 GOP primary contest. A few months before his death in December 2006, however, Ford was asked by an old friend to predict who the Republican nominee would be.
He smiled and replied: "Well, if they want to win, Giuliani. He's really good, he's articulate - he's just a leader."
Still, Ford has a point!
First stop: Abu Dhabi
Mrs. Laura Bush talks with women in the Pink Majlis Monday, Oct. 22, 2007, at the Sheikh Khalifa Medical Center in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The Majlis is a tradition of open forum for a wide range of topics. The Majlis focuses issues related to breast cancer. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
More Abu Dahbi photos here.
Next Stop: Saudi Arabia
Mrs. Laura Bush addresses U.S. embassy staff Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2007, during her visit to Riyadh, Saudia Arabia. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
Mrs. Laura Bush meets with His Majesty King Abdullah Bin Abd al-Aziz Al Saud at the King's palace Oct. 23, 2007, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Also pictured is Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the United States Adel A. Al-Jubeir. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
More Saudi photos here.
On to Kuwait:
Mrs. Laura Bush meets with Amir Shaykh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2007, in Kuwait City. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
Mrs. Laura Bush speaks with Dr. Rasha al-Sabah, right, Under Secretary of the Ministry of Higher Education, during a Diwaniya held by political women leaders Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2007, in Kuwait City, Kuwait. Also pictured is the Minister of Education Dr. Nouriyah Al-Sabih. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
Mrs. Laura Bush poses for pictures after addressing American troops Thursday, Oct. 25, 2007, at Ali Al Salem Air Base, Kuwait. It is the third country visited by the First Lady on her four-country, Mideast tour. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
More Kuwait photos here.
Last Stop: Jordan
Mrs. Laura Bush is received by His Majesty King Abdullah II at Beit al Urdun Thursday, Oct. 25, 2007, in Amman, Jordan. White House photo by Shealah Craighead
Aside from meeting with the area's political leaders the main focus of the trip was to meet with women leaders and discuss women's health, education issues. No doubt the subject of women in Islamic society came up and what a great contrast to have a strong woman like Laura Bush representing Western values and women's equality. See each link for more photos to learn more about the trip.
Excellent interview with Mrs. Bush on her return with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday! A highly recommended read!
Saturday, October 27, 2007
I was just getting ready to chide Wordsmith for light blogging and he goes and posts a perfect triple trifecta!
The Neocon's Best Friend: Code Pink Circus Freaks
Wordsmith started on Thursday with this look at the Code Pink Circus Freaks who have recently become even more disruptive (if that's possible) at Congressional hearings. The woman with fake blood on her hands physically confronting Secretary of State Rice in the hearing room in front of Committe Chairman Tom Lantos was frightening. It's clear by now that Democrats give these freaks a wink and a nod to engage in this fascist behavior then perhaps a slap on the wrist. They pay a fine and they're back the next day.
Jihadi's Angry with Al Jazeera and bin Laden "Mistakes" Tape
On Friday Wordsmith spread the news that Al Jazeera was being attacked online by Jihadists who were angry the Arab news network had run excerpts of Osama bin Laden's latest audio tape where he admits "mistakes were made" by the Jihadis in Iraq. Don't the jihadis know that ole OBL is just trying to curry favor with the American media who years ago demanded President Bush admit mistakes?
Friday was Wordsmith's Daily Double and the Best for Last!
In a brilliant tour de force presenation Wordsmith lays out all the good news in Iraq: increasingly lower violence, accelerating political reconciliation and the bad news this means for the Jihadis and U.S. Democrats. He tops it all off with photos of Iraqi children whose lives will be saved and made brighter by the presence of U.S. forces.
Great lines from the piece include:
- "Message to Code Pink and company: This is what you are fighting against" followed by the photos of happy Iraqi children mingling with U.S. troops.
- "The anti-war movement has lost the war."
- "Who wants to be the last mujahidin to die for [bin Laden's] mistake?"
Good work Wordsmith! You have a three day pass to resume cartoon blogging!
Ron Paul: The Favorite Candidate of White Supremacists!
Meanwhile, Curt is back from Las Vegas with a vengeance. He posted "White Supremacists Love Them Some Ron Paul". And you should see the comment thread on this one. Radio talk show host Michael Medved entered the fray on Friday with an open letter to Ron Paul asking him to repudiate the support and ideology of the white supremacists. No response yet!
This is How Democrats Support Our Troops
Readers will recall when John Kerry made that joke about making good grades in school or you get sent to Iraq (Dem quotes slamming our troops here). Kerry's "joke" is just the tip of a very large iceberg. And of course those insults from top Democrat leaders create a culture of indifference, even hostility, towards our troop's achievements and their abilities. For instance, take this cartoon from the infamous troop hater Ted Rall:
No matter how many times we show troop hating lefties this study from the Heritage Foundation which demonstrates higher socioeconomic status among our troops than the average popultion they persist in their insults. No matter how much anecdotal evidence there is of soldiers who are working on advanced graduate degrees, or are graduates of West Point, all serving in Iraq. No matter what the facts are, like so much disinformation in lefty land, truth is the first casualty.
No Surprise: Presidential Candiate John Edwards Would Cut Pentagon Funding!
Considering how Democrats despise the military and denigrate the troops it's no wonder that Dem presidential candidate John Edwards is adapting that mindset to his presidential campaign.
He is proposing across the board cuts in defense spending including the Missile Defense technology which has shown to be working and desperately needed to deter missile threats from nation's like Iran and North Korea. He would cut or cancel new advanced weapons systems like the F-22 that may protect us from future threats and he would cut weapons and training and supplies that keep our troops safe and help us fight with less risk to civilians.
Here's the video of his plan.
Here's the text.
Edward's would instead take the money and spend it on health care, education and the usual laundry list of rat hole social spending that still leaves us with the problem, but we feel better knowing we spent trillions. But what good will that feeling be if America is seen to be weak? What good is health care or education spending if America's children aren't alive? And aren't we doing this "for the children?"
Government Sudsidized Health Care for All
So it's not just "for the children?"
Bonnie Frost, the mother of 12-year-old Graeme Frost who was so vilely used in a transparent Democrat effort to lie about the need for massive new spending on "children's" health care has now come out of the closet and is actively campaigning for government subsidized adult health care.
Apparently, the Frosts, who live quite well by all reasonable standards choose not to buy health insurance. And why should they when they think they can shame the government into providing it for free.
This reminds me of the line by P.J. O'Rourke cited by Mitt Romney in the Florida Debate: "If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it's free."
Thank God for Joe Wilson!
no, not THAT Joe Wilson... the other one!
it's a great thing when you have an elected official, a man for whom YOU actually voted that performs his duties in office the way you want him to and the way you would if you were there instead of him.
I'm very pleased to say that Congressman Joe Wilson (R-SC) is my Congressman. Every time I see him interviewed on television or speaking on the House floor I applaud!
Last week he went to the House Floor to assail the smear against Rush Limbaugh by elected Democrats and to praise Rush for turning this nasty episode into a huge positive by auctioning the letter Senate Democrats sent condemning him as "unpatriotic" for $2.1 million and donating it along with another $2.1 million of his own money to the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation.
Joe: I'm glad I voted for you. I'm glad I donated to your first campaign. I'm glad you are my congressman!
Backfire on the Big Lie!
How Democrat's latest politicization of tragedy blew back in their faces!
Here's how the big lie works: Whenever there is a tragedy like the California Wildfires you'll see Democrats knock each other over in a rush to the nearest microphone to say "It's Bush's fault."
That's exactly what they did when the wildfires broke out in California by making the false claim that if we weren't in Iraq California National Guard units would be available to help.
Usually, that kind of story line gets some legs and as the quote of the week reminds us, it's late when the truth catches up, if at all. But by the time President Bush visited the afflicted area it had become clear to all but the most deranged Bush hater that the effort to combat the fires and aid those left homeless was being managed superbly!
Reflect on the Sublime, the Beautiful, the Innocent
With so much violence, anger and hatred in the world it's sometimes easy to forget why we daily struggle to bring light, peace and justice to the world.
This video I found by way of Sunlit Uplands is a reminder. Do yourself a favor: Watch, Listen:
More Libera here in streaming audio.
Here's one I did with Rush Limbaugh and Condi Rice (that right there is enough to frighten lefties):
Friday, October 26, 2007
As one famous Arkansas politican said: "you better put some ice on that."
Another Man From Hope
Who is Mike Huckabee?
by John Fund
October 26, 2007
Republicans have won five of the last seven presidential elections by running candidates who broadly fit the Ronald Reagan model--fiscally conservative, and firmly but not harshly conservative on social issues. The wide-open race for the 2008 GOP nomination has generated two new approaches.
Rudy Giuliani, for example, isn't running away from his socially liberal views, although he has modified them. But he is campaigning as a staunch, even acerbic economic conservative. Should he win the nomination, conventional wisdom has it he may balance the ticket by picking former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee as a running mate.
Mr. Huckabee, on the other hand, is running hard right on social issues but liberal-populist on some economic issues. This may help explain why the affable, golden-tongued Baptist minister was the clear favorite at the pro-life Family Research Council's national forum last Saturday. And why Mr. Huckabee's praises have been sung by liberal columnists such as Gail Collins of the New York Times and Jonathan Alter of Newsweek.
Mr. Huckabee attributes his support to the fact he is a "hardworking, consistent conservative with some authenticity about those convictions." He is certainly qualified for national office, having served nearly 11 years as a chief executive. I have known and liked him for years; on the stump he often tells the story of how we first met outside his boarded-up office in the state Capitol, which had been sealed by Arkansas Democrats who refused to accept he had won an upset election for lieutenant governor in 1993. But I also know he is not the "consistent conservative" he now claims to be.
Nor am I alone. Betsy Hagan, Arkansas director of the conservative Eagle Forum and a key backer of his early runs for office, was once "his No. 1 fan." She was bitterly disappointed with his record. "He was pro-life and pro-gun, but otherwise a liberal," she says. "Just like Bill Clinton he will charm you, but don't be surprised if he takes a completely different turn in office."
Phyllis Schlafly, president of the national Eagle Forum, is even more blunt. "He destroyed the conservative movement in Arkansas, and left the Republican Party a shambles," she says. "Yet some of the same evangelicals who sold us on George W. Bush as a 'compassionate conservative' are now trying to sell us on Mike Huckabee."
The business community in Arkansas is split. Some praise Mr. Huckabee's efforts to raise taxes to repair roads and work with an overwhelmingly Democratic legislature. Free-market advocates are skeptical. "He has zero intellectual underpinnings in the conservative movement," says Blant Hurt, a former part owner of, and columnist for, Arkansas Business magazine. "He's hostile to free trade, hiked sales and grocery taxes, backed sales taxes on Internet purchases, and presided over state spending going up more than twice the inflation rate."
Mr. Huckabee told me yesterday he also cut some taxes, and has taken the Americans for Tax Reform no-tax pledge. Former GOP state Rep. Randy Minton is not impressed. In 1999, he was urged by the governor to back a gas-tax increase. "I'd taken a pledge against higher taxes, but he sniffed that my constituents didn't understand what we have to do in state government to make it work," Mr. Minton says. "His support for taxes split the Republican Party, and damaged our name brand." The Club for Growth notes that only a handful of the 33 current GOP state legislators back their former governor.
Governors who served with him praise Mr. Huckabee for his ability to work with others, but say he was clearly a moderate. "He fought my efforts to reform the National Governors Association and always took fiscal positions to my left," former Colorado Gov. Bill Owens, a supporter of Mitt Romney, told me.
Rick Scarborough, a pastor who heads Vision America, attended seminary with Mr. Huckabee and is a strong backer. But, he acknowledges, "Mike has always sought the validation of elites." When conservatives took over the Southern Baptist Convention after a bitter fight in the 1980s, Mr. Huckabee sided with the ruling moderates. Paul Pressler, a former Texas judge who led the conservative Southern Baptist revolt, told me, "I know of no conservative he appointed while he headed the Arkansas Baptist Convention."
Mr. Huckabee's reluctance to surround himself with conservatives was evident as governor, when he kept many agency heads appointed by Bill Clinton. Zac Wright, a spokesman for incoming Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe, was asked this year why 15 Huckabee agency heads had been retained. Most of them were "Clinton people," he replied, not "Huckabee people." Mr. Huckabee told me many of his agency heads had "apolitical" responsibilities.
Many Huckabee supporters have told me their man should be judged by what he's saying on the campaign trail today. Fair enough. Mr. Huckabee was the only GOP candidate to refuse to endorse President Bush's veto of the Democrats' bill to vastly expand the Schip health-care program. Only he and John McCain have endorsed the discredited cap-and-trade system to limit global-warming emissions that has proved a fiasco in Europe.
"It goes to the moral issue," he told an admiring group of environmentalists this month. Alan Greenspan blasts cap-and-trade in his new book as not feasible, noting that "jobs will be lost and real incomes of workers constrained." Mr. Huckabee defends his plan as an "innovative" way to attain complete energy independence from foreign oil by 2013.
During a visit to the Journal last spring, Mr. Huckabee joked that one of his biggest challenges is that "like Bill Clinton I hail from Hope, Arkansas, and not every Republican wants to take a chance like that again." But it's Mr. Huckabee who is creating the doubts. "He's just like Bill Clinton in that he practices management by news cycle," a former top Huckabee aide told me. "As with Clinton there was no long-term planning, just putting out fires on a daily basis. One thing I'll guarantee is that won't lead to competent conservative governance."
Equal Time: Cajun Tiger posted this excellent endorsement of the Mike Huckabee by Chuck Norris. It highlights Huckabee's better qualities. Like each of the GOP candidates he has a good side and a not so good side. There is no perfect candidate. And as a reminder to our single issue voting friends: Let he who is without sin cast the first vote!
It's bound to be a classic like this great line from the Bob Hope 1940 film "The Ghostbreakers."
More Halloween Fun:
Mike's America: The Antidote for Liberal Zombies
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Still no new polling data for the South Carolina horse race which has Rudy Giuliani neck and neck with Fred Thompson. The last Real Clear Politics average for SC showed Rudy and Fred with approximately 20% each followed by Romney at 16%, McCain at 14% and Huckabee a distant 5%.
Two major events are as yet unmeasured by any new polling in South Carolina: 1. Rudy's performance in the Florida debate last Sunday and 2. Rudy's appearance at the Value's Voter's Summit in Washington DC a few days earlier.
Considering the importance in South Carolina of values voters, who are overwhelmingly conservative, evangelical Christians I thought it important to give Rudy's speech to the group in Washington wider exposure.
In both the Florida debate and the Values Voters summit Rudy has had to fight against the idea that he isn't a "true" or "real" conservative. Here's are extended excerpts of his response on that score:
Video of all the speeches at the Values Voter's Summit, including that of the other GOP presidential candidates who attended (no Democrat candidates attended) is here. Scroll down to see the entire list.
Mayor Giuliani’s Remarks at The Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit, Washington, D.C.
Transcript from JoinRudy2008
Oct 20, 2007
... "I've come here to speak with you about our shared values and shared goals because I truly believe that what unites us is much greater than any of the things that divide us, whether it’s you and I or all the people of America. The American people want their political leaders to reason together and to find solutions to the challenges that we all face.
when we discuss the role of faith and values in our politics, unfortunately the discussion is all of a sudden turned around to something negative. It’s usually more about what people are against and what people are for.
Christians and Christianity is all about inclusiveness. It’s built around the most profound act of love in human history isn't it?...It must be a miracle behind that that people can love each other so much and care about each other so much. They can love each other so much that they can even forgive the people who persecuted them. This is a religion of inclusion. They were always looking for people to bring into the fold. They were truly defined by what they were for, not what they were against.
"I’m running for President of the United States because I believe I can bring us together. Strong leadership can help us find common solutions to our problems. When I look to the future, my head’s not down. My head is up. Nobody in this country should have their heads down. If we have our heads down in this kind of negativity, where’s the rest of the world going to go? I mean this is the greatest country on earth. We are the luckiest and most fortunate people on earth to be living here. We may have big problems, but we have bigger solutions.
This summer I presented 12 Commitments to the American people. I would ask you to read them and look at them and see if that doesn't define your vision for the future of this country. They’re a statement of specific principles and a statement for change. They’re optimistic, they’re challenging, and they’re all achievable. And the reason I can promise you they’re achievable is I've already achieved things very, very much like that.
you know that we have some areas of disagreement, but I believe we have many, many more areas of agreement and the one thing you can count on with me is I’ll always be honest with you. I’ll always listen to your ideas. I’ll always take them into consideration. And I’ll do the best I can to honestly tell you mine. I come to you today as I would if I were your President–with an open mind and an open heart and all I ask is that you do the same. Please know this— you have absolutely nothing to fear from me. I find it difficult understanding those who try to make me out as an activist for liberal causes. If you think that, just read any New York Times editorial while I was mayor of New York City.
Isn't it better that I tell you what I really believe instead of pretending to change all of my positions to fit the prevailing wind?
I believe trust is more important than 100% agreement. I worked for Ronald Reagan. He’s my hero. I modeled a lot of what I did as mayor of New York City after Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan didn't figure out what he was going to do by putting his finger in the air and figuring out where the winds were blowing. Ronald Reagan looked into his heart, his mind, his beliefs, and he asked the question. The question was what I do honestly believe is best for America? Some times that was popular, sometimes that was unpopular. But Ronald Reagan was a leader. See if I come out here and I take a poll and I try to figure out what you all believe and then I just repeat to you what you all believe, then I’m a follower. I may be a good actor if I do it well, but I’m a follower. What you’re entitled to from me is what I really believe--the sum total of my intellect, my experience, my education, my conscience, my heart, my mind, and then you have a right to agree with that, disagree with it, partially agree, partially disagree and then figure out if I’m the right person for you to support. But for me to twist myself all up to try to figure out exactly what you want to hear and today say one thing and the next day another thing and a year from now---if you do that too long, you lose the sense of what leadership is all about.
Ronald Reagan had a great way of summarizing it. He used to say my 80 percent friend is not my 100 percent enemy.
Our Constitution is not antagonistic to religion or faith or God. It has two principles, both of them entirely consistent with one nation under God. A prohibition against the establishment of religion and an equally strong prohibition against government interference in the free exercise of religion. When you read those two together, these guarantees make clear that our Founding Fathers wanted to have a nation where people of faith could freely practice their faith as openly as they wanted to, proclaim their faith as strongly as they would like to, and it could be as much a part of the political debate as individual minds and hearts directed.
"George Will called my time as mayor of New York City quote, “The most successful episode of conservative governance in this country in the last 50 years.”
I’m sure many of you have been to New York City. How many?
I bet you’re not afraid to come there anymore, right? There might have been a time when you were. There might have been a time when you were afraid to come to New York City-in the 60s, the 70s, the 80s, and the early 90s. A once great city, America’s largest city, had fallen into a terrible cycle of violent crime, civic decay, dependence, despair.
Times Square, which just kind of a symbol of New York City, had become a haven for drug dealers, for prostitutes, and for purveyors of pornography. My city was suffering an average of about 2,000 murders a year. That’s almost 6 per day.
Our success in turning New York from the crime capital of America, which it was for three decades, to the safest large city in America is well known.
But other successes are less well known. We drove pornography out of Times Square and other public spaces.
In 1987, there were 35 pornographic theaters and shops on just one stretch of 42nd Street. When I left office, there were zero—none.
This fight wasn't just limited to the battlefields like Times Square was at that time. It extended throughout the city. We significantly reduced pornography throughout the city of New York and we took on other institutions like the Brooklyn Museum of Art which was using taxpayers’ funds to display an exhibit that showed the Virgin Mary covered in elephant dung. It was just another example of the double standard that exists for people of faith. There’s just no outrage among the politically correct crowd when Christian icons are desecrated. We stood up and we said enough. And I led the effort. Some of the liberals were furious. Go back and read the New York Times editorials.
[G]overnment should never be required to give out taxpayer money to desecrate religion. It’s just plain wrong.
And we need to stand up to those who try to drive traditional expressions of religion out of our public life. Whether it’s lawsuits that attempt to remove “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance or institutional resistance to having the word God appear on certificates that accompany flags which are flown over the capitol dome. Freedom of religion is not freedom from religion.
We instituted the largest welfare to work initiative in the country. We work with faith-based organizations to achieve that change. ...the fact that there are 640,000 fewer New Yorkers on welfare and many of those people are working and they’re working in good jobs and they’re taking care of themselves and they’re taking care of their families has a lot to do with why New York City turned from being the crime capital of America to the now being not just the safest large city in America.
Because I believe that if individual take responsibility for their own lives, they develop to their full potential. That’s why I’m also such a strong supported of school choice....I’m the product of parochial schools. St. Francis of Assisi Grammar School, St. Anne’s Grammar School, Bishop Loughlin High School, and Manhattan College. The first time I attended a class in which a prayer wasn't said at the beginning of class was my first day at NYU Law School. I was so confused I began by making the sign of the cross and then I looked around and realized people were staring at me. It helped my development a lot in many, many ways that I don’t have time to describe. But every parent in America should have the right to send their child to the school of their choice.
As I told you before, I've made 12 Commitments to the American people. One of them is I made a commitment to decrease adoptions and increase---to decrease abortions and increase adoptions....the most important thing for a child is to be in a loving family. So we did everything that we could to increase adoptions in New York City. We worked with the Dave Thomas Foundation. We did adoption fairs. We did outreach. I participated in it. I led it. We increased adoption by 133 percent over the eight years before I came into office. And we found that abortions went down by 18 percent during that period of time. I believe we can do that in the United States. People of good conscience come to different conclusions about whether abortions should be legal in some circumstances. But you and I—and I believe almost all Americans share the same goal: a country without abortion. Achieved by changing the minds and hearts/
I will veto any reduction in the impact of the Hyde Amendment or other existing limits on abortions or the public funding of abortions....I support parental notification and will continue to and I supported and continue to support the ban on partial-birth abortion...I’ll make the $10,000 adoption tax credit permanent and my administration will work with Congress through the Office of Faith-Based Initiatives to find new ways to support organizations that promote alternatives to abortions like Elaine Bennett’s Best Friends Program.
no set of decisions the next President makes will be more important than the judges that that president appoints....look at the members of my judicial advisory board. It’s chaired by Ted Olson, a close friend of mine for many years in the Reagan administration and former Solicitor General of the United States. It includes among its members Larry Thompson, Miguel Estrada, Steven Calabresi and until recently Attorney General designate Mike Mukasky..if you need a yard stick of what kind of judges would he appoint, then I can tell you I would appoint Supreme Court Justices in the mold of Justice Scali, Justice Thomas, Justice Alito, or Chief Justice Roberts.
The next President needs to have learned the lessons from the past and the mistakes that were made in the negotiations with Yasser Arafat, which I believe were terribly mistaken and went very much in the wrong direction. If Israel is to have a true peace it will only be achieved if the Palestinians accomplish these three things. If they accomplish these three things I believe there is a realistic road map to peace. But the responsibly on these three issues belongs with the Palestinians.
First, they have to accept the right of Israel to exist as a true state.
Second, they have to forsake terrorism and eliminate it.
And third, they must begin to create a responsible government taking accountability for the problems of its people.
If we expect perfection from our political leaders, we’re just asking to be disappointed. We lose trust in political leaders not because they are imperfect – after all they’re human. We lose trust with them when they’re not honest with us.
Likewise if we’re honest with each other, trust will follow. We might agree, we might not always agree. I don’t always agree with myself. But I’ll give you a reason to trust me and you’ll always know where I stand.
This conversation that we've had about shared values and goals is a beginning, it’s not an ending. I want to work with the community of faith to develop new ideas that can protect our shared vision, building a more civil society, restoring the social contract, promoting a culture of personal responsibility and in the process we’ll achieve our shared goals, protecting our children’s’ innocence and defending the expression of religious faith, strengthening parents’ rights and expanding school choice, advancing toward a culture of life by decreasing abortions and increasing adoptions, appointing strict constructionist judges, and winning the Terrorists’ War on Us. Because the more we all talk together, the more we share ideas, the more we all respect each other, the more we can achieve. I’ll continue to extend my hand to you and I hope that you’ll take it. Together we can help our country rise to new heights and continue to form a more perfect union. May God bless all of us and may God continue to bless our great nation, the United States of America. Thank you.
It's unfortunate to see how some single issue voters are deriding Rudy and other candidates as not being "true conservatives." Seems to me that a record of succeeding in reducing crime, pornography, abortions and welfare while supporting a strong national defense and allies like Israel demonstrates a proven commitment to conservative values.
And after the we lost control of both house of Congress in part because of "principled" complaints from many of these same voters it's curious that they seem hell bent on repeating that mistake.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
I'll be revising the post as news reports and video become available.
The question I had for Senator Thompson (paraphrase): "President Bush's "new tone" failed to bring Democrats on board in a bipartisan manner even for the most serious national security issues. Both your main opponents are citing their records of getting results in heavily Democrat states. How will you get results and deliver conservative government if elected President?
The answer (paraphrase): "I've been succesful working with Democrats in the Senate. But to move off this bitter partisan divide we're going to have to show Democrats there's a price to be paid at the ballot box for their divisive tactics. The American people need to send a strong, clear signal that they expect Democrats to work WITH us on these important issues."
It's a tough question to answer, and that's why I asked it.
If I get a link to the video recorded by local television stations I'll be sure and post that, or at least a transcript.
How will you beat Hillary Clinton?: "This election is about more than Hillary Clinton and we shouldn't elevate her to a status she doesn't deserve. The election is about the choice between Republican conservative values and Democrats who would impose socialism and who don't support our troops but work to undermine them." (paraphrase)
On Immigration: What about building the border frence, the illegal aliens already here and the Dream Act? I had trouble hearing the whole answer, but Thompson was strongly in favor of building the entire 800 miles of fence Congress has already approved and for stronger enforcement of laws concerning hiring illegals. He also was strongly opposed to the Dream Act, the latest attempt in the Senate to create a backdoor amnesty and benefits for illegals. Today the Dream Act failed to win enough votes in the Senate this afternoon (Roll Call vote tally here). Senator Thompson also reminded the crowd that of his post today on his web site: "Democrat's Dream Act is a Nightmare."
With this impromptu question and answer session initiated by yours truly, Fred didn't have time to eat lunch, but instead greeted other lunch goers before leaving for a speeech at Sun City Hilton Head. That speech to the mature adult gated community was not open to non residents so local GOP'rs are particularly pleased Thompson was able to drop by and say hello.
The Thompson Campaign is a Family Affair
We South Carolinians value the unique role our state plays as the "first in the South" primary. But it's really the first conservative primary.
So after candidates do the meet and greet at Iowa pancake breakfasts and brave the coming snows in New Hampshire it's important that they also get the southern perspective in the same personal way.
I found Senator Thompson to be direct, engaging and more than able to connect with the voters who turned out to see him today. And in person, I'm better able to dispel those media generated images of his campaign that have taken hold.
Good Olde Fashioned SC Horserace
No new polling since we began the 90 day countdown to the January 19 South Carolina GOP primary (analysis and more info here). At that point Thompson and Giuliani were running neck and neck at agout 20% each in the Real Clear Politics SC average. We'll be watching to see if the numbers change in the wake of Thompson's better performance in the Florida debate last Sunday and his recent swing through South Carolina.
Some in the crowd I spoke to insisted Fred is the best man to beat Hillary. What do readers think? Or should we take Fred's advice and avoid elevating Mrs. Clinton to a stature she does not deserve?
Rudy Visits Mike's America
Duncan Hunter Woos SC Conservatives
NY Governor George Pataki Visits Mike's America
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Want to know why Democrats made such a big deal of Bush's firing of a handful of U.S. Attorneys? Consider this:
HILL'S CASH EYED AS CHINESE-LAUNDEREDAnd this:
By CHARLES HURT in Washington and ELAINE CHAN in New York
New York Post
October 20, 2007
Hillary Clinton's campaign has been raising huge piles of money in Chinatown, but some of it has come from donors who can't be located or who were improperly repaid for their contributions, according to The Post and other reports.
A search of Chinatown donors yesterday by The Post found several bogus addresses and some contributions that raised eyebrows.
Shin K. Cheng is listed twice in federal records for giving $1,000 donations to Clinton's campaign on April 17.
But the address recorded on campaign reports is a clinic for sexually transmitted diseases, hemorrhoids and skin disease.
No one at the address knew of a Shin K. Cheng.
Another donation came from a Shih Kan Chang on Canal Street. But the address listed is a shop that sells knock-off watches and other pirated goods. The sales clerk there did not know the donor.
Hsiao Yen Wang, a cook in Chinatown, is listed as giving Clinton $1,000 on April 13. Contacted yesterday, she told The Post she had written a check.
But it was on behalf of a man named David Guo, president of the Fujian American Cuisine Council, and Wang told The Post that Guo had repaid her for the $1,000 contribution.
Such "straw donations" are strictly prohibited by federal law.
Dishwashers for ClintonJudgment? That's putting it mildly!
Once again, a zeal for campaign cash trumps common sense.
Washington Post Editorial
October 22, 2007
DONORS WHOSE addresses turn out to be tenements. Dishwashers and waiters who write $1,000 checks. Immigrants who ante up because they have been instructed to by powerful neighborhood associations, or, as one said, "They informed us to go, so I went." Others who say they never made the contributions listed in their names or who were not eligible to give because they are not legal residents of the United States. This is the disturbingly familiar picture of Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential campaign presented last week in a report by the Los Angeles Times about questionable fundraising by the New York senator in New York City's Chinese community. Out of 150 donors examined, one-third "could not be found using property, telephone or business records," the Times reported. "Most have not registered to vote, according to public records."
This appears to be another instance in which a Clinton campaign's zeal for campaign cash overwhelms its judgment. After the fundraising scandals of President Bill Clinton's 1996 reelection campaign, the dangers of vacuuming cash from a politically inexperienced immigrant community should have been obvious. But Ms. Clinton's money machine seized on a new source of cash in Chinatown and environs. As the Times reported, a single Chinatown fundraiser in April brought in $380,000. By contrast, 2004 Democratic presidential nominee John F. Kerry raised $24,000 from Chinatown in the course of his entire campaign.
Rush Limbaugh had the best comment on this latest Clinton/Chinese money laundering scheme: "In Chinatown and other Chinese neighborhoods in the Bronx and in Queens, dishwashers, people who live in tenements, can affordto donate $1,000 and $2,000 campaign contributions to Mrs. Clinton, but they can't afford health care. No, you and I are going to have to pay for that."
The FBI is reported to be undertaking an investigation of campaign contributions by disgraced Clinton fundraiser Norman Hsu, also Chinese. But what do you want to bet the investigation won't be concluded before the November 2008 election? Democrat's have already laid down covering fire to head off any Clinton investigation by making so much noise about the firing of U.S. Attorneys by Bush. If anyone were to even suggest that the investigation of fundraising irregularities needs to be complete and a report released before the election you can expect Democrats to hit the roof. Apparently, the people do NOT have the right to know.
The People DO NOT Have a Right to Know II
As part of an investigation into the deep roots of Clinton Scandals I visited Little Rock, Arkansas in September and the site of Charlie Trie's former Chinese Restuarant was my first stop. Fu Lin's (meaning "enrich your neighbor" -- how appropriate) is where the Clinton's first began cultivating the Chinese connections that continue to pop up throughout their public life.
During that visit of Clinton scandal sites I also visited the Bill Clinton Presidential Library which sits on the banks of the Arkansas River adjoining a rusted out and disused railroad bridge to nowhere. If you visit the Library you'll be impressed by all the letters and photographs of famous people praising Bill and Hillary Clinton.
But you won't find any documents relating to anything that might show Hillary or Bill in a bad light. All that is being carefully restricted by old Clinton cover up expert Bruce Lindsey:
Is anyone surprised? If you visit the Clinton Library, make sure to see the policy alcove titled "Fight for Power." In it you will learn that every accusation of impropriety ever leveled at the Clintons was the result of scheming Republicans bent on the politics of personal destruction. Neither you, nor any researcher, will get to see the letters, emails, videotapes or photographs showing Clinton corruption firsthand.
Papers? I Don’t See Any Papers.
He says he's 'pro-disclosure,' but Bill has kept Hillary's White House files under wraps.
By Michael Isikoff
Oct 29, 2007 Issue
When author Sally Bedell Smith was researching her new book about Bill and Hillary Clinton's White House years, she flew to Little Rock to visit the one place she thought could be an invaluable resource: the new William J. Clinton Presidential Library. Smith was hoping to inspect records that could shed light on what role the First Lady played in her husband's administration. But Smith quickly discovered the frustrations of dealing with a library critics call "Little Rock's Fort Knox."
An archivist explained to Smith that the release of materials was tightly controlled by the former president's longtime confidant Bruce Lindsey. Could she look at memos detailing the advice Hillary gave Bill during debates over welfare reform? Smith asked. No, the archivist said, those memos were "closed" to the public because they dealt with "policy" matters. What about any records that show what advice Bill gave his wife about her 2000 U.S. Senate campaign? Those, too, were closed, the archivist said, because they dealt with "political" matters. "He essentially told me I had no chance of getting anything," says Smith, whose book, "For Love of Politics: Bill and Hillary Clinton, the White House Years," hits the bookstores this week.
The response Smith got isn't unusual. Nearly three years after the Clinton Library opened—and more than 21 months after its trove of records became subject to the Freedom of Information Act—barely one half of 1 percent of the 78 million pages of documents and 20 million e-mail messages at the federally funded facility are public, according to the National Archives. The lack of access is emerging as an issue in Hillary's presidential campaign: she cites her years of experience as First Lady as one of her prime qualifications to be president. Like other Democratic candidates, she has decried the "stunning record of secrecy" of the Bush administration; her campaign Web site vows to bring a "return to transparency" to government. But Clinton's appointment calendar as First Lady, her notes at strategy meetings, what advice she gave her husband and his advisers, what policy memos she wrote, even some key papers from her health-care task force—all of this, and much more documenting her years as First Lady, remains locked away, most likely through the entire campaign season. With nearly 300 FOIA requests pending for Clinton documents, and only six archivists at the library to process them, Archives spokeswoman Susan Cooper says it is "really hard to predict" if any of this material will be released before the election.
Bill Clinton has tried to cast blame for the backlog on the Bush White House. "Look, I'm pro-disclosure," Clinton said in a testy exchange with reporters during a recent press conference. "I want to open my presidential records more rapidly than the law requires and the current administration has slowed down the opening of my own records." But White House spokesman Scott Stanzel tells NEWSWEEK the Bush White House has not blocked the release of any Clinton-era records, nor is it reviewing any.
For instance, you won't see this photograph of disgraced Clinton fundraiser Johnny Chung escorting Chinese "businessmen" to the White House:
guest list for the infamous White House Coffees where the White House was used as an ATM for the Clinton political machine.
If you had seen displays featuring those items you might be reminded that Clinton fundraising irregularities are nothing new. And you might be less willing to overlook the corruption which continues with Hillary's latest campaign.
The Sad Saga of Peter Paul
What happens to a Clinton supporter who fails to fall on his sword and cover up for Hillary? They find themselves in a foreign jail cut off from their family. Gayle found this documentary of the story of Peter Paul. Once one of Hillary's strongest supporters Mr. Paul was cut loose when questions about fundraising for Hillary's Senate bid were raised. It's the clearest example of how the Clinton corruption continues:
Like every other Clinton scandal where Hillary denied any knowledge of wrongdoing Hillary LIED about her connections to Peter Paul and her awareness of fundraising activities on her behalf. And as you see in the video, the usual suspects in the leftist media are only too happy to come out and say "there's no evidence." And of course when you show them the evidence, the old standby "both sides do it" emerges.
When GOP'rs "Do it" they go to Jail.
When disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff "did it" he went to prison. When Congressman Duke Cunningham "did it" he went to prison. When Hillary does it, the public will be dragged through endless legalistic arguments quibbling over such minute points as "the meaning of the word 'is'." One word that is not in the Clinton dictionary is "accountability."
Mitt Romney Wrong on Hillary Experience
In the GOP Florida debate last Sunday Mitt Romney erred when he said "She [Hillary] hasn't run a corner store. She hasn't run a state. She hasn't run a city. She has never run anything."
Hillary Clinton has run the most successful criminal political enterprise in the last 50 years. And she continues to evade the accountability that would apply in spades to any other candidate from either party!
Is that the kind of "experience" we want in the White House -- AGAIN?
Sunday, October 21, 2007
There was a clear winner in tonight's debate. It was the Republicans of Florida, Fox News and the candidates who participated in this watchable, interesting, even entertaining debate.
While I found the debate in Dearborn, Michigan (analysis here), hosted by MSNBC dull but informative, the First in Florida Debate kept up a good pace and allowed a freer give and take between the candidates themselves. Something which is always encouraged.
Mitt Romney Has A Hair Moment
Mitt Romney set the evening's tone by demonstrating a wayward forelock which came down right across the center of his forehead. It reminded me of Alfalfa of Little Rascals fame perhaps all the more so because it appeared just as the candidates were about to mix it up over who was the real conservative.
Romney needed a moment like that to help deflate the image that he's often a bit too perfect, or as one of his harsher critics described him: "plastic." Nothing helps a Ken Doll appear more likeable than to be boyishly disheveled from time to time.
Great Lines from Great Minds:
- John McCain: "In case you missed it, a few days ago, Senator Clinton tried to spend $1 million on the Woodstock Concert Museum. Now, my friends, I wasn’t there. I’m sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. I was tied up at the time" as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam.
- Mitt Romney: A reminder of the quote of P.J. O'Rourke: "If you think health care is expensive now, just wait until it's free."
- Mike Huckabee on retiring Baby Boomers: "When all the old hippies find out they get free drugs, watch out!"
- Audience: When Romney was asked if Hillary was fit to be Commander in Chief the audience answered for him in a torrent of "NO, NO, NO."
- Tom Tancredo: When speaking about the Armenian Genocide resolution Nancy Pelosi is pushing in the House of Representatives and how it is complicating relations with our ally Turkey, Tancredo said: "Nancy Pelosi is not a very good Speaker and is a lousy Secretary of State."
- Fred Thompson: Speaking about Romney being to the left of Senator Ted Kennedy: "There's not much room to the left of Ted Kennedy. There's not much room to the right of him either."
- Rudy Giuliani: When told teachers in New York dislike him and opposed his school choice plan: "I care more about the kids."
- Duncan Hunter: Responding to Romney's state mandated health care insurance: "It's got to have, for example, fertility coverage. Well, what if you're 90 years old? We may appreciate Governor Romney's optimism but you may not need fertility coverage."
Some Advice for Ron Paul: Hire a Speech Coach!
We have to keep Ron Paul in these debates for the comedic relief. But please, Dr. Paul, you raised millions in the last fundraising quarter, do us all a favor and hire a speech coach. He begins each answer in a normal voice and as he gets wound up he whines ever higher. And all that claptrap about the "corporations" "big drug companies" and constant whining about the Constitution unmask him for the moonbat he is.
Much of the debate showed the candidates more eager to run against Hillary Clinton than find fault in a fellow candidate's position. Later, when Fox News Analyst Frank Luntz reported the findings of his wired focus group that theme, opposing the creeping socialism represented by Hillary Clinton, was a major motivating factor in how the group viewed the candidates.
I'll go into this in more detail when a full transcript of the debate is available.
Reaction to Sunday's debate is beginning to percolate in the blog world. Here are two highlights:
- Cajun Tiger is in Iraq and got up at 3AM to watch the debate. Read his report here. Bottom line: Rudy won the debate, but Huckabee and McCain both did well. Both Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson fell flat.
- Dee at Conservatism with Heart graded the candidates: Rudy (A), Hunter(A), Thompson (B), Romney (B-), Huckabee(C) McCain (C-), Tancredo (D), Ron Paul (F)
What's interesting is how the debates, as well as other recent events are shaping people's perceptions of the candidates and guiding them to support one over another in the leadup to primary or caucus day in their respective states.
Question for Readers:
How have the debates, candidate interviews and speeches shaped your perception of the candidates? Are you firming up support for any one individual or still undecided?
In celebration of the event, we contacted the Flopping Aces budget film unit in Bombay India.
Director Wordsmith weighed in with this. Then this.
Director Mike's America submitted this.
When these films were shown at their California premiere, liberal moonbat goofballs and supporters of Ron Paul (same thing really) rioted in the streets. Our Flopping Aces news photographer was on the scene and captured the following image:
this post last December which examined Curt's approach to blogging. Regular Flopping Aces readers and fellow bloggers might find it interesting.
Happy Birthday Curt and Welcome to Middle Age! Let's just hope there's some Social Security and Medicare left for you in a few (very few) years!
Wish Curt a Happy Birthday by clicking over to Flopping Aces!
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Put aside all the complaints about it being "too early" to take the 2008 GOP presidential nomination contest seriously. That was true back in June or August, but We're now less than 90 days away from the first conservative primary to be held in South Carolina on Saturday, January 19.
Iowa and New Hampshire come first, but it won't be until the candidates left from those two races reach South Carolina that conservatives will have their chance to be heard in the largest numbers. Remember back in 2000, conservatives in South Carolina erected a firewall against the candidacy of John McCain, thus easing the way for George W. Bush to take the nomination. Will South Carolina be the conservative firewall again?
As in both Iowa and New Hampshire, the race in South Carolina is tightening. Take a look at the graph in Real Clear Politics showing the polling trends in South Carolina. Both Giuliani and Thompson are tied at approximately 20% in the Real Clear polling averages with the trend moving in Thompson's favor. Meanwhile, Mitt Romney is bumping up to within 4% of the leaders and McCain is staying flat at about 14%.
John McCain has been busy trying to restore his campaign in South Carolina. Once a state where he held a comfortable lead and where he still has many top state GOP leaders pledged to support him, lately, he's had to play the underdog role. Recent impressions that McCain is too old (his trouble hearing at the Dearborn debate analysis here) gave McCain the idea to bring his 95 year old mother, Roberta, to campaign with him in the state. McCain also had some good press from no less than conservative Kate O'Beirne at National Review who encourages voters to give him a second look.
Intense Competition for Values Voters
In the wake of the unfortunate threat by Christian leader Dr. James Dobson to boycott the GOP unless it nominates the candidate of which he approves, all the major candidates have been working to broaden their appeal to so-called "values voters." This effort has intensified with the withdrawal of Kansas Senator Sam Brownback from the race.
Earlier this week, Bob Jones III, chancellor of the Christian fundamentalist school named for his family in Greenville, SC endorsed Mitt Romney. Bob Jones University played a controversial role in the GOP contest in 2000. Will this endorsement help Romney overcome the Mormon stigma?
Sunday School Surge for Thompson?
This weekend, the major candidates are making an appearance at Family Research Council's Washington Briefing 2007. Fred Thompson has been hitting back hard against what many perceive as the softness on traditional values by opponents Romney and Guiliani. While not mentioning them by name, Thompson staffers circulated fliers describing Romney's late arrival to conservative values and pointing out aspects of Giuliani's record that conservatives find disagreeable.
And that kind of hardball seems to be paying off both in the South Carolina polling discussed above and in national polls like the CBS poll graphic at right indicates.
UPDATE: Not So Fast Fred!
Huckabee Clear Favorite Among Values Voter Attendees
Values voters back Mike, MittSpeeches from all the Values Voters participants is here. (page down to see all)
By Ralph Z. Hallow and Stephen Dinan
October 21, 2007
Mike Huckabee yesterday asked social conservatives to back him as one of their own, and they did, giving the ordained Baptist minister a giant victory among evangelical voters who participated in this weekend's Values Voter summit straw poll.
"I come today not as one who comes to you, but as one who comes from you," Mr. Huckabee, a former governor of Arkansas, said in the best-received speech of all of the Republican candidates, each of whom addressed the summit over the past two days.
Hours later, a closed-door meeting of top social-conservative leaders did not produce a consensus on which candidate to back, but The Washington Times has learned Mr. Huckabee had the most support among the two dozen in attendance.
Last month, many of the same leaders met and agreed to consider running a third-party candidate of their own, but that option is now considered dead because enough of the leaders have agreed the field already has acceptable candidates.
"I do not spell G-O-D [as] G-O-P," Mr. Huckabee said in a speech he wrote himself. "Our party may be important, but our principles are even more important than anybody's political party."
of the 952 activists who voted on-site this weekend and who had a chance to hear all the speeches in person, Mr. Huckabee won big, taking 488 votes, or 51.3 percent.
Mr. Romney finished second in on-site votes with 99, or 10.4 percent, and Mr. Thompson finished third with 77 votes.
Mr. Paul's support came almost exclusively from the Internet. He collected just 25 votes among on-site voters, scoring a last-place finish among the nine Republicans.
Funding for the Opening Salvo
Here are the top six latest cash on hand figures for GOP candidates reflecting 3rd quarter reports (click candidates name for in depth report from Open Secrets:
Rudy Giuliani - $16,649,826
Mitt Romney - $9,216,517
Fred Thompson - $7,121,744
Ron Paul - $5,443,667
John McCain - $3,488,628
Mike Huckabee - $651,301
John McCain is constrained by a high debt of $1,730,691 which may put the pinch on him unless more funding becomes available. Giuliani, Thompson and Romney are all well funded and ready for the next 90 days.
Next Stop: Florida Debate Sunday
Fox News will host the "First in Florida" GOP presidential debate Sunday, October 21 at 8 PM est. All eyes will be on Thompson whose first debate performance in Dearborn, Michigan was lackluster (Dearborn debate analysis here). New polling may also indicate whether the "Sunday School surge" of churchgoers for Thompson is a trend.