Did Ted Cruz Really Win Every County in Maine?

The Boston Globe and 2 local papers didn't give him a chance. He didn't win a single county in Massachussetts 4 days earlier. Did Cruz really win EVERY county in Maine?

By Cruz Camp's Own Admission, Heidi Should Be Thoroughly Vetted

The head of the Ted Cruz campaign has said Heidi is Ted's closest adviser. The FEC violations involve her current employer. No personal attacks, just a necessary professional evaluation of Heidi Cruz's role in the Cruz Crew.

How Ted Cruz Can Stop Immigration Abuse NOW!

As a self-described "constitutional expert" Canadian born Cruz could do us all a great service to stop illegal immigration by simply answer 4 teeny weeny questions...

The Complete Concordance of Cruz Corruption, Deceptions and Lies

Reagan was attacked by the Establishment, but people LIKED him. Cruz on the other hand is despised by mild mannered Huckabee and "sealed lips" George W. There is a reason. Here is an (almost) complete compendium of Cruz lies.

Why Isn't Anyone Discussing the SCOTUS Ruling on Natural Born Citizen?

There is a lie being told that "Natural Born Citizen" is not defined anywhere in the Constitution. That's True. What's Not True is that it is NOT settled by the Supreme Court. (It has)

Why I'm Happy To (Now) Be A Texan

In honor of @pmbasse, a descendant of one of the original 300 Texas settlers, I want to tell you WHY I LOVE TEXAS. As they say, I wasn't born here but I got here as soon as I could. And for me that was 3 times.

Ted Cruz Takes More Wall Street Money than Hillary Clinton

When you see who REALLY is running Ted's campaign, you realize how "inside" this pretend outsider is. The top CIA, Goldman Sachs executives are LITERALLY running his campaign.

The PolitiJim Twitter FF List

The most rewarding and frustrating experience on Twitter has to be the concept of Follow Friday. I have a solution. See where PolitiJim gets his news, and twinteraction from.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Life Lessons of a Cub Fan ver 103.0

The Sun-Times ran a story a couple of weeks ago called: They’ll be blue if Cubs bid adieu.  Gordon Wittenmyer is a great Chicago writer (and the reason I originally joined Twitter by the way).  His piece is primarily about the prospect of losing Aramis Ramirez and Alfonso Soriano, but one line stuck out to me above all others:
It would be the end of a five-year run for Soriano, eight-plus years for Ramirez — the only position player left from the 2003 autumn of Bartman.
In some ways it seems more like 80 years.

For those of you who don't follow my Cubbies, here's some quick things to know (in addition to the fact we haven't won a World Series in 103 years or appeared there in 66 years).  Cub fans can skip straight pass the bullets unless you are heavily anesthetized.

  • In 2003 the Cubs were 5 outs away from going to the World Series
  • The (then) Cub owners (Chicago Tribune) went on a New York Yankee like spending spree, and hired former World Series Champion coach Lou Pinella
  • In 2007, Sweet Lou finally got the Cubs back to a playoff appearance not even winning a single game in the first division series.
  • In 2008, the Cubs couldn't loose.  Literally.  Well almost literally. They won a MLB best 92 games and won 67% of the time at home.  And they couldn't win a single game in the first round of the playoffs.  Again.
  • The Tribune decided to sell the team and it seemed to take 20 years to get the Ricketts of AmeriTrade fame.  92% of Cub fans wanted them as owners because Tom first met his wife Cecelia in the Wrigley bleachers.  Cub fans, by and large, are mostly emotionally romantic saps.
  • When Sweet Lou left before the end of last season to tend to his ailing mother, assistant manager Mike Quade took over and went 24-13.  Too much too late but enough to bump beloved Cub AAA Minor League Coach and Cub All Star Ryne Sandburg from his dream job of managing the Cubs.
  • This year the Cubs only had a winning record against the lowly Houston Astros and Quade went 16-25 in his last games.

Caught up now?  Good.  Most of you are saying to me, "So Jim.  I get it.  The Cubs suck.  Why are you a Cub fan?"

I'll tell you why.  It's a metaphor for life.  It's hope.

In just 8 years we Cub fans have gone from utter emotional devastation to soaring hope and now are kind of lost in the wilderness.

But wise men tell us faith is believing in what you do NOT see.  If you could see it and expect it, it wouldn't be faith.

And without faith.  It's impossible to please God.  It's why all Christian Cub fans don't just go to heaven, we get VIP passes from Abraham who will say, "Dang!  I only had to wait 25 years for Isaac!".

In the documentary, "We Believe," a priest says that developing the character of loyalty best happens by believing in a lost cause.  I don't believe that.  I didn't choose the Cubs as my baseball team because they were winning.  (Or because I wanted to develop character.) We don't like "Rocky" because he won, we like Rocky because it seemed hopeless and he won.

It's why I could never be a Yankee fan.  And why I bleed Cubbie blue.

I love the underdog because I am one.  Ask a Boston fan if the wait was worth it.  Ask them if they cherish their 2004 win more than the 666 (or whatever the Yankees have won and if they don't share a closer camaraderie with other Sox fans.  The kids I grew up with who had everything, were also the first to give up when things didn't go as planned.  The ones that had to overcome DID enjoy victory more, but they also learned how to hang in there longer to see it happen.

I love where I come from.  My whole family came from all over Chicago including Crown Point (IN) and Calumet City and other places in Cook and Kane County.  I was a Cub Scout when I saw my first Cub game.  I had my first bratwurst at Wrigley and spent hours listening to Jack Brickhouse and Lou Boudreau in my backyard while cutting grass and throwing my only baseball into the net.

There is something about the character thing and the Cubs.  We are loyal.  We are romantic. And we are damn tough.  In many ways the Cubs define a lot of the qualities of Mid-Westerners.

But from the kindness, grace and dignity of Ernie Banks to the wild, uncensored enthusiasm and unabashed love of Ron Santo, it is the people who have represented the Cubs that gives us identity.

They not only demonstrated and gave permission for us to believe - they showed us it was noble to die trying.  We feel the pain of reproach of Ryne Sandburg almost like we would a sibling our parents shunned.  We see the conflict in Mark Grace when we play Arizona and could swear its the same look our childhood sweetheart gives although married to another.

Another Cub season as come and gone.  Not a chance in Elgin to make the playoffs from June on.  Yeah, it's a lot more fun winning 90 games than losing them.  But when they do win a World Series, and they will...I will share something with fellow Cubs fans who have waited their whole lives than no one else will understand.  Maybe something in the far suburbs of what veterans acknowledge one to another with a slight nod or a Ranger button on their lapel.  Maybe like mothers who did Lamaze or celebrities who found out the effort to fame was more rigor and responsibility than a reward. 

Though we bury our disappointment through various ways (I simply tuned out WGN the past 2 months and pretended baseball season was over), we learn that like life, the pain will pass, the hope of a new season will dawn.  And maybe, just maybe someday we can share the joy of overcoming with other Cub fans.

We never gave up,
We always kept hope,
We refused to be ashamed,

...knowing it will have been worth it.

Just like winning physical challenges.  Seeing our kids mature. And seeing hope realized.  

Just like life.

Just like family.

This is a clip from the movie, "We Believe."  I wish I could find the one I originally saw in 2009 where Bill Murray and others talk about what it will be like the day the Cubs win the World Series.  Again.


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Staff AP Photographer just "happens" to catch pic of Michelle at Target?

So I flash by Drudge and see Mama O in Target.  The headline is: First lady a not-so-secret 2012 campaign weapon.  Something smells bad on Aisle 11. 

So I'm wondering who the lucky "joe" was who just happened to hit the photo auction jackpot by finding her in the wild and it turns out "joe" is a "Charles."  Charles Dharapak no less.  
Charles Dharapak was born in New York and studied print journalism and economics at New York University. He joined the AP in 1995 as a staff photographer 
And of course the article goes on to put 100% goose down (or another goose produced substance if you prefer) in a puff pieces beginning with,
She's mingled barefoot among Aspen's elite... 
Forget the Birth Certificate, forget Fast & Furious...  the most telling sign of the inept inanity of this regime is caught on one single internet page.  What other news service than "Yahoo" would be appropriate for a PR play so transparent that even Sheila Jackson Lee wouldn't buy it.

So I suppose the "approval" numbers of Michelle have taken a hit beginning with the Prejudice about her country (or was it Pride?) on to the taxpayer funded excursions to Spain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Hawaii and Paupa, New Guinea.  (Ok she didn't go to that last place as far as I know).

Perhaps the dual jets to Martha's Vineyard made someone in the Obama re-election campaign say, "this might not look good."

And then they decide to recount all the accomplishments of the First Lady trying to look like Jane of the Junior League.  I hate to tell the White House but her image has gone way past "down to earth" to six feet under.

Hey Enablers: It's Jay Cutler's Fault

Am I Kicking Cutler When He's Down?
In Moon Mullins excellent piece: Cutler Making Martz Look Bad? he begins:
It has been a convenient theme that the problems with the Bears’ offense, besides Mike Martz’s game-planning, has been that the organization has not put sufficient talent around Jay Cutler for him to be successful. 
That is also a convenient lie.
I have been incensed with Waddle & Silvey (Chicago ESPN 1000 morning radio hosts) and most of the Chicago press who continue to shield Cutler from criticism.

Are these the same media guys who were verbally hanging Grossman in effigy WHILE he took them to the Superbowl?
Some, like Haugh, have been forthright in agreeing Rexy did NOT get a fair shot with the media when he wasn't sexy. Here is a great comparison at a point in 2008 when the media who had been excoriating Rex suddenly said, "well maybe it's the offensive line." When Orton came back from his ankle injury in 2008 and posted a 60ish passer rating - it was because "it never did heal"

I can't (and won't) make the case it is NOT the offensive line. (We all know that is part of it.) But except for the effervescent and shining Moon here, the Chicago media is now wanting to change the subject to Angelo, Martz, Lovie, and the receiving corp. Mullins has the best argument why this is a misplaced focus that I've heard so far:

First, it is a poor craftsman who blames his tools, so anything along those lines from either Cutler or Martz is poor buck-passing.
Second, part of what great quarterbacks (or players in any sport, for that matter – see: Johnson, Magic; or Bird, Larry) make the players around them better. Cutler is not doing that, unless it is somehow the case that Earl Bennett,Johnny Knox, Dane Sanzenbacher, etc. are really, really garbage and are being “saved” by Cutler. Don’t think so.
At some point, the spotlight comes to rest squarely on Cutler. That as much as anything was the case Sunday. At this point, Cutler can only be viewed as a middle-of-the-pack quarterback, which in fact is about where he’s generally rated. Nothing special.
Can anyone tell me how the same unit can look so dominating against a good (not great) Falcon team and look so miserable against the Saints and Packers? Yes, Packers have more talent, but why then against the Saints? Bears were only down a field goal until mid-way through the third quarter.

Here is why:

Jay Cutler is a wuss.
No, I don't mean that he is afraid of getting hit, or doesn't play through pain.  Even if he wasn't 6' 3" / 220 lbs, his scowl could probably kick my ass.  But I'll say what Moon Over My Sanity didn't say,  he is a mental and emotional wuss.

Did you ever wonder how, in the NFC Championship game, Caleb Hanie suddenly moved the offense more in 1/2 Quarter than they had all day?  It was the same O Line, the same recievers, the same offensive coordinator and the same opponent.  Yes, Caleb got rid of the ball quicker.  Yes the game seemed much more un-win-able.   (Why doesn't my word editor think that's a word?)

But a leader stepped in who find a way to make it work.  He almost led the team back to victory.  Todd Collins couldn't.

In the loss to the Saints, Joe Buck and Troy Aikman immediately began showing sympathy for Cutler's lack of protection and I guess most of the Chicago media is now parroting that line like MSNBC does for the Democrat party.

I forget who said it, but last week when Cutler was obviously complaining to Shane Day the response was, "with that kind of coverage I don't blame him."

Really?  As Moon points out not only was Cutler widely inaccurate when he could throw - he had wide receivers in perfect position.  From the fourth quarter of the Saints game throughout almost the entire Packer game these were expressions of Cutler:

Do you ever remember seeing Jim McMahon (or Payton Manning, or -gag- Brett Farve) with similar looks for more than a minute?

Of course not.  Because no matter how bad things got, they encouraged, motivated, challenged, assured, and exhorted their teammates.  THEY INSPIRED.

Am I saying that the Bears would have won if Cutler took a licking and kept on ticking?  I dunno.  I AM saying that didn't have a chance in Heinz Field without it.

Waddle was a good player.  I love him (as long as Silvey is there) on ESPN 1000 Chicago.  But I'm shocked he isn't ignoring EVERYTHING but attitude here.  Regardless of the receiving talent, regardless of his protection those team members FOLLOW their quarterback.  If he looks defeated - why are we shocked that they aren't performing?

A leader doesn't look defeated.  I don't care if he's been sacked 20 times a quarter.  He doesn't start looking sullen, depressed, annoyed and pissed out.  He fights.

One thing you can say about a Ditka team.  You never, ever wondered if every single player had given their best on any given day.  Chicago fans can live with loosing - if we at least have a leader with broad shoulders.

Meet the BLACK Jesse Helms

This fund raising letter sent out via Dick Morris is so good I had to post it on the blog.  

Like Cain, Robinson presents a glaring contrast of a road to leadership based on personal responsibility.  I'm tired of the Black/White thing.  This man is inspiring to us all.

Dear Fellow Conservative:

I happen to be a black man, but the only thing I have in common with Barack Obama is a good tan! If you share my belief that that socialist and his Democrat allies in Congress are destroying America, please read every word below.

While Obama was smoking marijuana and snorting cocaine, I was earning badges to become an Eagle Scout. While Obama was being mentored by Communist Party Member Frank Davis, I was taught to love God and country by my parents. While Obama was consorting with Marxist professors, Black Panthers, trial lawyers, union bosses, hippie peaceniks, anti-Christian atheists, militant homosexual agitators, radical pro-abortion feminists, gun grabbers, amnesty zealots, Chi-Com sympathizers, globalists who worship at the altar of the UN, and environmentalist wackos, I was earning my bachelor's degree alongside my fellow cadets at the U.S. Air Force Academy.

While Obama was hanging out with terrorists such as Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers (who bombed the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon), I was serving my country as a Missile Combat Crew Commander and Intelligence Officer. While Obama was attending "Socialist conferences" at Cooper Union, I was reading Milton Friedman, watching William F. Buckley, Jr., and attending the 1980 Republican National Convention that nominated Ronald Reagan. While Obama was learning his redistribution-based economics theory from law professors at Harvard, I was earning my MBA and learning the virtues of free market principles and pro-growth policies. While Obama was following in the footsteps of Saul Alinsky to become a Chicago-based community organizer, I was working as a business professor and serving in the first Bush Administration.

While Obama was saying Amen to the loony, vile, anti-America, anti-Whitey, anti-Semitic, pro-reparations, black liberation theology spewed by the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, I was worshipping at a church that preaches the Gospel and erecting a Ten Commandments monument on municipal property (to the dismay of the government bureaucrats and high priests of political correctness who insist that God must be ejected from the public square). While Obama was supporting the NAACP, the ACLU, the NEA, and ACORN, I was filing the successful lawsuit against the University of North Carolina that put an end to its practice of electing trustees according to strict racial and gender quotas and providing blacks-only scholarships at taxpayer expense.

I am running for Congress in North Carolina's newly redrawn 8th District because we cannot shrink big government and grow the economy unless we replace the Democrats in Washington with stalwart constitutional conservatives
As you may know, Republicans are expected to lose TEN congressional seats in California and Illinois alone as a result of the Democrats' extraordinary gerrymandering of those states' congressional district maps. In order to prevent Nancy Pelosi from becoming Speaker again, Republicans must pick up four Democrat seats in North Carolina. Because North Carolina Republicans controlled the redistricting pencil for the first time since the 19th century, four incumbent Democrat Congressmen now find themselves drawn into Republican districts.
To appreciate how conservative my district has become, consider this. In the old 8th District, Obama won with 52% of the vote. In the new 8th District, Obama lost with 42% of the vote. That ten point improvement (i.e., Obama losing by fifteen points instead of winning by five points) is especially good news for me because my opponent -- Democrat Larry Kissell has been a rubber stamp for Obama's socialist agenda.
For example, job-killing Kissell voted FOR higher taxes, the $825 billion stimulus, raising the debt ceiling by $1.9 trillion, taxpayer financed abortion on demand, and special rights for homosexuals. He co-sponsored Card-Check And he voted AGAINST Cut, Cap and Balance, the bill to repeal Obamacare, the bill to allow us to buy light bulbs of our choosing, school choice vouchers for inner-city children, and the bills to defund ACORN, Planned Parenthood, and National Public Radio.
Not every Republican who claims to be a constitutional conservative will stand up and be counted when the kitchen gets hot. You know I will, because I already have during my eight-year stint as a councilman. Unlike squishy RINOs, I will never become a tax collector for the welfare state. I will never become an enabler of Obama's fiscal child abuse by joining those Republicans who aid and abet the Democrats' burglary of our grandchildren's piggybanks.
For example, I opposed Obama's debt hike tax trap. Washington Republicans caved when they gave Obama a $2.4 trillion dollar increase in the debt ceiling, the largest increase in the debt limit in U.S. history. That agreement guarantees that Republicans will ultimately be put to a choice between raising taxes and cutting defense spending in a time of war.
Instead of cutting up Uncle Sam's maxed-out credit card, the Republican congressional leadership agreed to add more than $7,000,000,000,000 (seven trillion dollars) to the debt over the next 10 years! Those Republicans didn't compromise; they capitulated. I applaud the 66 GOP Congressmen and 19 GOP Senators who had the courage to vote no and stood by the "Cut, Cap and Balance" pledge I have signed.
If you haven't heard of me before, you are probably familiar with folks I have supported or who have supported me.  As an employee or consultant, I have helped meet strategic challenges for numerous candidates, corporations, and causes including George H.W. Bush, Dan Quayle, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Joe Arpaio, Sharron Angle, Pat McCrory, N.C. Education Reform Foundation, Civitas Institute, and John Locke Foundation.
In my previous campaigns, I was humbled to have the support of: Richard Petty, Richard Burr, Elizabeth Dole, Lauch Faircloth, Robin Hayes, Howard Coble, Virginia Foxx, Pete Sessions, Tom Tancredo, Bob Barr, Dick Armey, Pete DuPont, Jack Kemp, Bill Bennett, Jeb Bush, Pat Buchanan, Alan Keyes, Gary Bauer, Right-to-Life, NRA, Gun Owners of America, Citizens Cmte for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Police Benevolent Ass'n, Int'l Association of Fire Fighters, Immigration Reform PAC, English Language PAC, Republican Liberty Caucus, and National Republican Congressional Committee.
I earned the confidence of both the voters and national conservative leaders by proving that I am willing to stand up for my traditional American conservative principles -- no matter what the political cost, and no matter what the liberal media say about me. MSNBC's Keith Olbermann dubbed me the "Worst Person in the World" runner-up and the radical People For the American Way (PFAW) group put me at the top its "Right Wing Watch" target list.
I am ready for the fight, my friend, but I cannot win it without your help. I do not come from money. My father was a Tuskegee Airman, my mother was a nurse, and I have devoted much of my life to public service. I have no quarrel with those whose entrepreneurial pursuits have netted them tremendous financial rewards -- even speculators like George Soros, I am just not one of them.
I hate asking for contributions, but I've been around elections long enough to have learned this simple truth: if I do not ask you for money, a liberal Democrat will have this seat in Congress next year. I have to rely on the contributions and prayers of thousands of likeminded Americans like you, in the hope that you care enough about the values we share to contribute to the effort.

Will you send me a contribution today so that we can defeat Larry Kissell? I have to begin raising and spending money now because my opponent already enjoys the residual benefit that comes from three years of incumbency. I cannot wait until next year because Kissell's campaign has spent several million dollars on staff, TV ads, radio ads, signs, and mailers, his allies in the liberal media have made a six-figure in-kind donation in the form of gushing coverage, and the unions and sundry left-wing special interest groups have spent several million dollars in independent expenditures on his behalf.

Can you send my campaign a donation of $500, $1,000, or even $2,500, the legal limit? Such a large donation will help pay for several TV and radio ads exposing my opponent's radical record. Or if this is more than you can afford, could you send a donation of $250, $100, $50, or $35?

Rest assured my new crop of TV ads will be as effective and attention getting as the ads in my previous campaign for Congress. Rush Limbaugh said: "You've gotta hear this campaign commercial ... one of the best political ads in a long, long time just a great, great ad." MSNBC's Chris Matthews said: "This is an amazing ad. ... I mean, I've never seen ads this tough. it's strong, it makes fun of the other side viciously. I'm going to remember this ad." One left-wing blogger wrote, "My head just exploded!" Another wrote, "It's worse than the Swift Boat and Willie Horton ads combined."

Indeed, Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition and Al Sharpton's National Action Network both demanded I take down one of my TV ads. Speaking of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, I have even less in common with those clowns than Obama. While Sharpton was defaming law enforcement officers by falsely claiming they had raped Tawana Brawley in an alley, I was working on the Winston-Salem City Council to get pay raises for our policemen. And while Jesse Jackson was shaking down companies for donations so he could pay hush money to his concubine for their love child, I was serving my country, earning an honest living, and working with my wife of 28 years, Helene, to raise our three children.

I don't head for the high grass when the Left turns up the heat. That's just not my style. I put my trust in God, not my finger to the wind, and my record proves it. I want to put a burr in Barrack Obama's saddle. I want to put a bee in Nancy Pelosi's bonnet. I want to give Barney Frank a Maalox Moment. And I want to embolden Republican Congressmen to buck up instead of buckling.
For God and Country,

Vernon Robinson
Republican Candidate for Congress (NC-8)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Demise of the Easy-Bake Oven « runinmystocking

This is wonderfully written and NAILS the ripple effect of this administrations terrible regulatory appetite.

The Demise of the Easy-Bake Oven « runinmystocking:
September 28, 2011 by Beth Pepoy

The Demise of the Easy-Bake Oven 

If anybody has any questions about the current state of the government ask a kid with an Easy-Bake Oven.  Once a fun toy that you baked some what edible treats with, is now extinct in the way we all use to know.

Why did the federal government pick a poor helpless toy?  Did the Island of Misfit Toys need a new member?  Exactly what did this toy do besides under cook cake mixes that ended up with Dad suffering through as to not disappoint.
It wasn’t the toy but the light bulb.  Yes, the 100 watt bulb is the culprit. How dare the incandescent light bulb cause so many problems.  Uh, what?  Wait a minute we are talking the federal government here right?
Yes we are.  Apparently the bulb was an energy sucking vile on the face of the union.  Okay may be not that big of deal but somebody who hated the dread light bulb sitting in cubicle somewhere in the EPA felt it was not acceptable for factories to continue to make them (here).
Who started all this?  I don’t care! it‘s the symbol in which it represents.  How much do we want the government in our homes?
While I have raised my family and I have grown accustom (enjoyed) to picking up only after myself.  Taking the federal government into my home has no real appeal.  Actually none, and pretty sure I am extremely tired of picking up after them with the taxes I pay. 
Through a strange little toy I literally can trace back the clumsy take over of my rights.
  • I have the right to bear arms.  Not fund Mexican drug cartels.

Read the rest of the witty "rights" and the article here.

Perfection Under A Red Umbrella: Throwing The Crown Jewel Under The Bus

My dear friend Melody of the aptly named Perfection Under A Red Umbrella blog has written a masterpiece and a must read for every Conservative.

I had just mentioned in my latest blog on choosing candidates that the Healthcare issue in the debates had boiled down to a numbing Gregorian chant of "Waivers and Repeal." Now we Americans ARE much smarter (on whole) than politicians give us credit for but we are forgetful.  It has not even been two years since the passing of ObamaCare corrupted the lives of many previously respected Congresspeople and the entire healthcare sector of our economy.

In reading, Throwing The Crown Jewel Under The Bus, I was shocked HOW MUCH I had forgotten about both terrible implications of ObamaCare and the criminal way in which it was passed.  And I'm not even an Elephant. I'm an Independent.

As we individually tweet, blog, debate with friends and family, and tell all to real ghost stories around our fall campfires - this morality tale is a MUST READ to keep fresh in our minds what the argument is really about.  i just wish every candidate has already done so.

And the best part of the article is at the end in her analysis of WHY IN THE WORLD the Obama Administration is handling it's defense in a heretofore inexplicable manner.

So quit reading this and READ THIS: Throwing The Crown Jewel Under The Bus

'via Blog this'

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

How to Pick A GOP Candidate Part 2 - POLICY

You can put a thong on a a RINO but it still ain’t attractive

So this was supposed to be wrapped up in 2 parts and I hate to tell you - it's gonna be 3.  I just find I have more brilliant analysis than I thought I did and, of course, it would be a disservice to withhold that from you.  So this will be Part 2 - Policy, and Part 3 will be How they Manage.  In Part 3 I will grade candidates by ELECTABILITY, Policy Issues and actual Governing/Managing indicators.  There will be a bonus blog on the candidates spouses. (Part 3 here)

We ended up in Part 1 discussing what characteristics makes a candidate ELECTABLE.  We all agreed (whether you know you did or not) with my brilliant observation that we don’t just desire to get our candidate elected, but we want them to be able to MANAGE effectively.  Otherwise you get what the Dem’s got right?  “YAY! OUR GUY GOT ELECTED!  DONKEY! DONKEY! DONKEY! …oh sh*t…what the hell did we do!

I'm not sure any of the GOP candidates could screw things up as badly as Obama did for his Party of Ass.  But the issue is deeper than political disaster.  The future of the Republic really is at stake.  Imagine a President who looked good, talked conservative, cut taxes and stimulated the economy but only:
  • Marginally corrected the Social Security trust fund so it wouldn’t be bankrupt for 50 years instead of 25.
  • Scaled back some of ObamaCare but left the 159 new agencies in place.
  • Rolled back some executive orders and fired a few ‘czars’ (Again leaving legacy positions an authority for the NEXT president to shut down the internet in a "crisis," and permanently funded bureaucratic boondogles like this)
  • Did nothing on immigration that either closed borders, penalized companies hiring illegals or reduced illegal immigration to traditional norms.
  • Didn’t address the liability the Federal Reserve put on the US by lending to foreign banks (or countries) that could default.
  • Did nothing to substantially change the reach of the EPA, DOE’s etc. EXCEPT to put new managers in and curtail some regulations.
This essentially is Bush 3 and would set the stage for someone like Hillary or worse to take a shot at big government liar #46.  GETTING ELECTED is not even half the battle.  To allow this country to prosper there are fundamental structure and policy issues that have to be changed - and in some cases eliminated, to protect against the government growth abuses going back to LBJ.

(With apologies to Rush) UNDENIABLE PolitiJim Truth #4577: During the primary, the base of the Party eliminates candidates who don't adhere to their core principles.  Giuliani couldn't make it past the pro-life base, and narrowed conservative options who split the vote in 2008 leaving us with McCain.

UNDENIABLE PolitiJim Truth #4578:  The people who don't "tune in" until the last 10 seconds of the general election decide the close ones.  In 2008 - American voters ONLY heard the chatter of the mainstream media and the adoration for Barak in contrast to several serious McCain erratic fumbles during the economic crisis.  Obama sold that he was for tax cuts for the middle class, and was even better equipped to handle the economic crisis.  And, he wasn't George Bush.  Bush allowed himself (and by default his party) to be besmirched without ever truly defending himself or his policies against the unrelenting criticism of the left.  Much like Bob Dole who refused to do the same against Clinton, the public believed who was doing the 'splaining. The only way for someone whom the independents consider "extreme" to be elected in a general election is by either by:
  • Lying (Barak Obama)
  • Charisma / Conviction explaining "extreme" positions as logical/moral (Ronald Reagan)
  • Being in the opposite party of a current disaster (see Carter (Ford-Nixon), Reagan (Carter), Obama (Bush-McCain)
What is an "extreme" position at first (ie, supply side economics or universal healthcare) CAN be sold to the public if it is delivery smoothly, by a charismatic presenter and your opponent is unwilling to effectively point out it's deficiencies.

So we look at the policy issues understanding WHAT IS IMPORTANT TO THE BASE may not be an asset in the general election, unless the candidate is adept enough to make it a winning policy.

It's all about "the economy stupid,” right?

The re-election of Bill Clinton amidst allegations of illegal campaign contributions, the sale of country secrets to China (see here), and even rape confirmed two things to me.  First, regardless of the noble characteristics of virtue we WANT in a candidate - or an electorate for that matter - ultimately US voters will vote what is in their own economic self-interest.  Secondly, we have no real leaders - spiritual or political - that are successful in calling America to a higher moral standard.

It is a huge conflict for many of us because we are sick and tired of subjugating the slaughter of millions of innocent children and the issue of Constitutional justice to economics.  But the cold, hard reality is that our Republic is more interested in our own economic well being than justice, morality and "doing the right thing."  (God help us.)

Voter Issues - Aug 2011
So ECONOMIC policy is by far the most important issue in ELECTABILITY.  But since nearly all the GOP Presidential candidates agree on cutting spending and balancing the budget to one degree or another - let's save that for last for strategic reasons.

What are the top issues so far in the election?  Let's run through what political stances our candidates must have.

Isn't it funny that Obama campaigned on cleaning up the terrible lobbying corruption and supposed ethical misdeeds of the Bush administration and it wasn't even a category of choice by pollster CNN or FOX (pdf).  In 2007 it showed up as a major issue but wasn't "owned" by either party. And yet, according to Rassmussen, it comes in number two behind the economy.  Although the Fast & Furious/Gun Runner scandal and Solyndra have gotten press the past few weeks, what possible 'ethics and corruption' issues could have possibly made voters put it in importance before healthcare, taxes or immigration?  Weiner wouldn't. Congress is at all time approval lows, but the current congressional investigations barely warrant mention in alternative media.  I don't really have a factual basis for knowing how many American voters actually understand how blatantly corrupt Pelosi and Reid were in forcing through ObamaCare and other legislation, but I can't imagine it would top the charts today.

I also have no idea if a specific politician intentionally posted fraudulent birth certificates, falsified selective service registration and an ineligibility to be hired as a migrant worker under e-Verify due to a fraudulent Social Security number have anything to do with this. I couldn't find one single article this year explaining the breakdown of this issue rating.  However, I find it interesting that while lampooned, Trump soared into the lead in the GOP Presidential nomination polls with the birther issue front and center.  When Obama released the (fraudulent) long form version and BOTH conservative and mainstream media put out their gag order, his numbers fell.  Coincidence?

I understand some of you have not kept 'up' on this topic and don't understand the "birther" issue now has little to do with whether Obama was born in Kenya.  I agree it is too late to argue that with a Kenyan/British father - Obama is NOT qualified to be President.  But the overwhelming evidence of fraud, forgery, cover-up and misuse of power can not be swept under the rug without serious consequences to our future.  Justice is not revenge.  It is reinforcing our acknowledgement of what is right - so that future generations are not just deterred from wrongdoing, but inspired to uphold it.  Certainly the Fast & Furious and Solyndra scandals are an easier starting point for candidates to launch from as it reflects on responsibilities under Obama's authority - usurped or not.

The field only boasts 3½ players who can point to a history of attacking corruption.  Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich are the only two announced candidates. (Newt gets ½ credit for eliminating waste and welfare reform).  The two strongest candidates are yet unannounced.  Giuliani was a former Federal prosecutor and Palin did the unthinkable in breaking apart not only the oil industry corruption in her state, but dismantling the corrupt GOP party machine as a Republican.

Like many I've been unable to understand how Obama could be "liked" in the 50%+ range but disapproved of at the same time.  If they truly believed he broke tax law in his Rezko land deal used a fake SSN for 20 years and openly submitted a forged birth certificate - do you really think those "favorability" ratings would continue?  Of course not. 

A word of warning to my conservative friends who want to bury this issue: If the polling can be shown to support this presumption - responsible prosecution of Obama could actually be the winning issue for a candidate like Perry who is faltering or a Bachmann who is loosing steam.  But It is uninformed to accept the notion the issue is 'untouchable' if it is the second hottest issue with voters.  Why haven't ANY candidates mentioned this in three debates?  I can't imagine.  Race42012 - has an excellent overview on the broader ethics issues as well.

Bachmann gets a 100%, A++, Gold Star, Candidate of the Month award for explaining that a mere waiver for states, does not eliminate the 159 agencies or permanent tax structures put in place by ObamaCare.  I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt that she meant she would lead the effort to overturn it (rather than repeal it by royal decree), but she has been spot on as to the importance of this being a platform to grow government, spending and to be misused by future Presidents. Cain hasn't been as emphatic on the issue but has been consistent in asking for repeal.  Romney finally added "repeal" to his "Executive Order for states waiver" - but I hope he realizes that the whole "Executive Order" idea is a hot button on executive privilege misuse by many conservatives.  (We are paying for the deaf ear we turned to liberals who complained about Bush's misuse of it for sure.)

Romney is obviously the weakest on this subject and I don't need to repeat the befuddlement by other bloggers and journalists as to why Mitt continues to get very little pressure on this.  I hope it is not because our candidates are not aware of the complexities of it's dangers.  As the Administration has strategically buried the whole subject, I pray our candidates have not forgotten the fundamental arguments of HOW this is killing healthcare innovation, fee and drug rates, doctor recruitment and by default - the economy.  They MUST get sharp again on this issue as the campaigns move forward or it will become like that hazy confusion of why you broke up with that high school flame who reappears.

But aside from just repealing OCare, I've only heard Cain and Santorum talk about Health Savings accounts and how to let insurance companies compete across state boundaries to bring down costs.  Like many I am unsold that Romney and Huntsman will make this a "make or break issue" if they are elected but will say whatever to get through the primaries.  I am only 100% convinced by Bachmann she truly won't give up on it - as diligently as the opposition wouldn't give up in cramming it through.
2010 Gallup Poll of Voter Top Issues

TAXES - Hunstman had the scariest answer of all at the Fox/Google debate.  He said we should never raise taxes during a recession.  I have no doubt at the first growth numbers from the ThinkProgress he'd sign anything.  Dick Morris says it best. "He's running in the wrong party." The rest of the field all seem to understand this issue to one degree or another.  It is interesting that Rasmussen said most voters understand cutting taxes gets the economy going.  That should play well for all of our candidates.

EDUCATION - Bachmann has one of the better pedigree's here and perhaps because this issue polls lower for conservatives (Not a Federal issue to us) it doesn't get a lot of air time.  If our candidates platform is to eliminate the Department of Education, having started a school would be a wonderful immunity offset.  With most apolitical Americans likely associating the existence of a Department of Education with BETTERING education, this is a great opportunity to educate the public on what kind of waste, inefficiency and LOWER test scores the DOE has gotten us.  "How can you hate the kids?" becomes, "How can you keep lowering their aptitude?"

SOCIAL SECURITY - Paging Rick Perry.  Once again Karl Rove and Mitt Romney needlessly complicated the campaign of a conservative cause (not just the candidate) with their arrogance and opportunistic blabbermouthing.  (If that isn't a word it should be.  I'm trademarking it).  If Milton Friedman, one of the conservative economics geniuses of our time called it a Ponzi scheme - IT'S A PONZI SCHEME!  Rove is still trying to steer a car by looking out the sideview mirror of polling, worried about perceptions than actually CHANGING political dynamics.  Cain did a brilliant job at both the debate and the StarWars bar afterparty (aka MSNBC interview) by not backing down on this at all.  Add in a little more understanding of HOW BAD it is and how bad it is is going to be in the future (ie, 140 people supported one senior when Social Security started and now 2.9 people do and it's heading lower,) and we will strip that third rail off of the Democratic Hyperbole Express.

Medicaid and Medicare are normally included and ObamaCare gives the GOP a huge hammer since Obamacare cut $500 Billion from it.  Conservatives dont' have to seem to endorse state run health care but again launching a package of tort reform, consumer driven (not insurance driven) payments, deregulation and medical savings accounts.  Hopefully a candidate will finally find a way to simplify a very complex solution.

IMMIGRATION. As perhaps the best positioned social conservative in the field just learned, being a border Governor doesn't give you a pass on immigration issues.  NumbersUSA has a scorecard for the candidates according to a very austere anti-immigration outlook, while Americans for Legal Immigration have declared Perry's run is over on this issue alone.  (NumbersUSA wants NO immigration lottery at all - a stance not supported by any of the candidates accept Ron Paul who gets an overall "F".  So this is the most extreme immigration position against which they are measuring.)  According to their scorecard - Bachmann is actually the strongest candidate in the current field. Cain and Romney tied for second.

In answering my liberal friends who ask the, "Why do Republicans hate minorities so much?" question, i liken it to a mixture of three things.  First, it is economic.  Annual waste of perhaps $100 Billion or more (plus stealing jobs for teens and unskilled workers) is ridiculous.  Our own SSA website declares you don't need a social security number to get "many benefits" as a LEGAL immigrant.  Of course they don't mention the new Obama "family plan" of benefits for illegal aunts and uncles who somehow have their own Social Security card. 

After emphasizing the admiration and promotion of LEGAL immigration (see below),  I explain to my liberal friends my second and third points to their ignorantly based question.  "You know the feeling you get at DisneyWorld when you've been waiting 2 hours for the FINDING NEMO experience, wondering if you will get in before it closes, and a family of 15 suddenly slides underneath the FastPass lane into yours in front of you?  Imagine instead the pimple faced Disney employees taking up a collection from everyone else in line to not just buy them a 3 day pass, but also a churro and soft pretzel for every cheater."  This is Rick Perry's blind spot.  Our immigration basket carries a wallets have nerve endings.

Republicans are missing the boat on not touting LEGAL immigration more which would enable them to not look like the mean, angry neighbor who doesn't want kids in the neighborhood - much less the lawn.

And I don't know about you, but Bachmann took a step back when she wouldn't answer Wolf Blitzen's question as to what she would do with resident illegals IF the border were shut and IF eVerify was passed.  (I know - it's my reindeer name for him.) She clearly avoided saying that she would deport wonderful American families who had lived here for 20 years illegally.  So this brings us to the issue which Perry apologists use by saying, "The GOP would never win an election in Texas (and by implication loose the Hispanic voter forever)."  Although Latino voters align more closely with Republicans on social issues, they put immigration reform as even more important an issue than jobs and the economy. How is this possible?  One reason is because 25% of Latino's have a family member who is an "undocumented American."  Over HALF of Latino's personally know an illegal and in Texas it's higher.  So if Rick Perry takes a hard stance on illegals - he's not just spouting a Conservative principle, he's talking about making Uncle Julio and Aunt Juanita homeless by sending them back to Mexico.  Or worse, they also serve as the day care service for the entire family.  This isn't an  easy thing to ask a culture that values family above almost everything to throw loved ones into the cold.

Failure to educate and inspire American values (truth, honesty, personal responsibility) that most Latino's share - is coming back to gouge us in the glutes.  But we've bought into this idea we can't talk about right and wrong for fear we will be pegged as "judgmental."  Stealing is wrong.  Is it so hard for a candidate to acknowledge the family dilemma for Latinos and explain how this is not just an economic disloyalty to our country but a demonstration of poor moral values to their children and ours?  Stealing, rebellion and lying are ok?  I trust the majority of ALL Americans, brown, yellow, red and green, they don't LIKE the nagging feeling they are stealing from their neighbors and are poor citizens.

Pew Hispanic Poll
Ultimately, the issue is how you frame it.  As you can see from the pie chart to the right, only 28% of Latinos don't believe illegals should be punished.  I wouldn't be shocked that those are mostly those who have illegals in the family and were already Democratic voters.  If you DON'T plant these ideas during the campaign - it is infinitely more difficult to get the attention of most of the electorate to educate and persuade them of the "just" course later.  Political capital is a REAL thing.  I think a majority of conservatives can live with a candidate that advocates building a fence, stronger border manpower, business penalties for hiring illegals and leaves how to deal with resident illegals with a "to be decided later," position AS LONG AS THAT DECISION WASN'T MADE UNTIL THE OTHER POLICIES WERE IN PLACE.  But the ultimate candidate would start asking Americans if we can really live with teaching our children that breaking the law is OK as long as you haven't gotten caught for a long time.  We are a nation of grace.  What conservatives don't want are more empty promises that if we just let these illegals stay it will all be fixed later.  That dog not only won't hunt, it's been buried under the stinky bush.

Off the radar by virtue of our false sense of security from no major domestic attacks, National Security can jump back to the top of the list with one piercing hole in our national armor.  it is clear that the MSM has aided Mr. Obama from any real understanding of the threat of Islamic Extremism even on our own turf.  It is tough to hide 13 dead at Fort Hood at the hands of an Army Major Psychologist, but there has likely been as many as 55 deaths due to Islamic extremist motivations SINCE 9/11.  We should be outraged that  a majority of the country is likely not aware that the shooter Nidal Hasan called himself a "Solider of Allah" on his business card and gave the traditional Islamic, "Allah is Greater," pronouncement before killing his fellow service men and women.  The war on terror IS on American soil, but our government and media are intentionally trying to hide it with hoaks and right wing fears.

Obama got cover with his national security "cred" through retaining Bush policies against the pressure of his base and the fortune of being on watch during the Osama bin Laden kill.  A GOP nominee weak in this area could get wiped out in the polls with one debate misstep and a national security crisis.   I suspect Perry's military background, Gingrich and Paul's legislative experience, Romney's national guard administration give them all a leg up on the field.  Santorum gave excellent foreign policy answers but whoever the candidate, they will need to eliminate any doubt that they can "handle it" while giving a Presidential stature in a time of crisis.  Say what you want about Obama but, to the uneducated observer, he maintains a calm demeanor even when he doesn't know what the hell he is talking about.  Not great to manage by (as we know), but it takes away a "Dan Quail" argument of not being presidential. I'm not sure how Bachmann and Cain will be evaluated by either the GOP field or the public at large.  Visible foreign policy experts and a general or two wouldn't hurt to give them the illusion that they have a "team" already in place.  Because of his executive experience, Cain may have an easier time convincing "leaners" this won't be a problem area for him.

Conservatives are split on the wars. Unlike issues like immigration, there isn't an overwhelming position that will disqualify someone in a primary except, perhaps Paul's position on pulling completely out of the region.  Since Obama continued most of the Bush policies, I doubt that the general election voter will believe ANYONE. If they don't have a Dukakis tank moment they are likely safe on this issue.  Americans still want someone who looks like a Commander in Chief.  The myriad of images of Palin with a shotgun, Perry killing a cougar, Giuliani during 9/11 and Romney's rugged looks likely put them above question as long as they have a clear handle of foreign policy and managing our troops.

It was very interesting that The American Thinker (which you should subscribe to by the way) had two somewhat ideologically opposed articles.  One said (paraphrased) "Don't loose the election by taking your eye off of the ECONOMIC issues!"

The other said, "Conservative Social Issues are WINNERS!"  (Like Bob Turner in NY-9)  In general elections, conservatives who argued effectively and factually on gay marriage, abortion, gun control, etc HAVE consistently won.  Conservatives who themselves aren't quite sure why they believe what they believe - can come off looking ignorant.  Sorry Ron Paul fans, you can NEVER win a conservative Republican primary by advocating the legalization of marijuana.  It's a "wall" issue (like abortion) for too many of the base of the party.  It's not an economic issue - it is a "principle" issue among people that actually STRIVE to be principled.

On abortion, many of us appreciate the public stances of Reagan and Bush.  It is incomprehensible to those of us around in 1980 - that with 22 years of Republican control of the Presidency, we are still allowing unborn children to be killed.  True, there is a small segment (I believe it is 12% to 15%) of single issue voters.  But we will surely make it farther toward our goal with someone who will appoint pro-life judges at every level.

Mitt has 59 points in his economic plan.  Cain has 9 of em.  (Or 729).  All top tier candidates (including Palin and Giuliani should they run) agree on some form of the following:
  • Cut capital gains to some extent.
  • Cut the corporate tax rate making the US more competitive for attracting back businesses.
  • Kill as many regulations as possible to allow businesses to compete and grow.
  • Getting unemployment and GDP numbers correct the first time so the market doesn't have to guess at the real revision numbers.
  • Pass a Balanced Budget Amendment immediately.
  • Eliminate wasteful bureaucracies like the Departments of Energy
  • Drill, Baby Drill.
All of our candidates already agree with most of these in some form or fashion.  But it will take a great communicator to help the American public realize what worked for JFK and Reagan will work for us now.

So who's a RINO and who isn't on these issues?  Conservatives are not going to tolerate a non-committal candidate who can be doubted.  Each candidate has some serious doubt they HAVE to overcome in the eyes of the primary voter.  (Perry on Immigration, Romney on Healthcare, Cain on foreign policy, Bachmann on the "Aura" and Management thing.)  Everyone wants SuperReagan who wasn't all that successful on implementing a number of conservative principles himself. (The link is my rebuttal to someone who tried to say Reagan wasn't conservative.  Ignoramus.)

What we have here, is failure to communicate
In part 3, I will grade each candidate according to the PolitiJim scale and "weight" those things most important.  What I can already reveal is that it is HIGHLY likely in 2012, things will be so bad economically we could run Pat Roberson (of 700 Club fame) against Obama and win.  All of our candidates can win on the overriding issue of the economic policy, but again, as in Part 1, I have to bring up the factor of communication.  It is one thing to HAVE the "right" policy.  It is another thing to communicate it.  Here is a quote from the Economist prior to the 2008 election:
...71% of those who do not cleave to either main party say Mr Obama has a better grasp of economics. (Economist 2008)
We ALL now know for certain he didn't.  But even his lies were better communicated than John McCain's truths.

GOP voters are tired of the Doles, Bush and McCains who they "settled" for in previous elections.  My bet is independents are feeling the same from their Obama-lash.  I think a key quality to contrast with the Obama will largely rest on two issues:
Trust + Authenticity
A friend of mine offered an unsolicited opinion that got me thinking about not just the importance of policy - BUT WHETHER WE BELIEVE THEY TRULY MEAN IT.  She said she would door walk for Palin, and no one else.  When asked why she volunteered, "because women can see through other women - and we know we can trust her."

Some of you reading this could care less whether a politician goes back on their word.  "READ MY LIPS, NO NEW TAXES." was disappointing for you and sorrowful because of the weakness for the party or in passing more GOP positions.  (Those who mistrusted Bush 42 and voted for Clinton instead got, "I did not sleep with that woman, Monica Lewinsky" - odd huh?)

To others of us, the "Read My Lips" thing was a personal betrayal.  But because we've been waiting for someone to help us implement the true principles we know are good and right and will HELP everyone in this country including our children and grandchildren.

So what I WILL grade is the trust and authenticity of the candidates and prospective candidates below on A) Do they mean what they say and, B) Will they stand firm in their principles if elected.

Waffling on the deportation issue made me suspect if she can't say what she really thinks, she pretends the question is something else.  Standard politics - not a moral failure, but not completely sincere IMO. I have no doubt however she would do what she says.
Going on very limited information including from friends who have met him. He has shown in debates he isn't afraid to say "I don't know." Not great tactically, but that could be the #1 quality voters are looking for.
My experience tells me it is entirely possible Newt has unfairly been judged in his personal situations.  As Speaker he never wavered executing the plan he set forth.  I feel he has tried to be cute with the media and has been slow to admit mistakes. Could easily have been C's
I admire the leadership qualities of Rudy.  I believe he is a decent guy. But his church is pro-life and he isn't and the days as prosecutor make me wonder if he can be too much a politician.  Unlike Newt these could be B's but just my impression
The more I hear and know about this guy, the less I trust him. Very possible I don't have all the facts on him but my impression is that he is very shifty.
Those who have read my review of THE UNDEFEATED know I have evolved to greatly admire Palin. In interviewing those from Wasilla I admire and respect her even more.  Her fearlessness as Governor against the GOP and Big Oil make me believe that if she has been faithful in the small things, she will be faithful in much.
I have no doubt Ron Paul sincerely believes what he does and wouldn't budge an inch on his principles.  His long record as a Congressman have proven that over and over again.
I am fully persuaded Rick is faithful Christian.  However, he gave a promise to Texans he wouldn't run for President and he never asked their permission to do so.  The "faithful in small things" goes here as well
I suspect Romney is a faithful devoted husband and father and a decent human being.  Politically however he has gotten smoother and it has made me MORE suspicious not less.  His fumbling for months to explain RomneyCare gives me the impression of a willingness to not just admit mistakes but to try and cover them.  Just an impression.
Rick has proven he is undeterred by the politically expedient positions he could have taken in a much more liberal state. His "B" comes from an impression he tries too much to gloss his record (not mislead) but I might have it all wrong.  It might be more personality and communication disconnect that character.

NEXT: Part 3: How They Will Govern

(Be sure to check out my previous blog on How Ideas Become Political Reality.)


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