Posted: June 26, 2017 Filed under: Education, History, Mediasphere, Politics, Think Tank, U.S. News, White House | Tags: Abortion, Democrat, GOP, Gun rights, JFK, John F. Kennedy, Larry Elder, Liberal, media, Prager U, Republican, Taxes, video
John F. Kennedy lowered taxes, opposed abortion, supported gun rights, and believed in a strong military. And he was a proud Democrat. But would he be one today? Author and talk show host Larry Elder explains.
Posted: September 16, 2015 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News, White House | Tags: 2016 Presidential Campaign, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, CNN, Dasich, Donald Trump, Drudge Report, GOP, GOP Debate, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, media, Mike Huckabee, news, Poll, Rand Paul, Republican, Scott Walker, Ted Cruz
Posted: September 14, 2015 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Democrat, Donald Trump, GOP, media, news, Republican, Trump, video
Posted: August 10, 2015 Filed under: China, Global, History, Russia, Think Tank, War Room, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Barbara Tuchman, Bill Clinton, Democrat, G.W.Bush, Iran, Iran Deal, John Kerry, North Korea, Nuclear proliferation, Nukes, President Bush, Pyongyang, Republican, Vienna
How North Korea made the Iran deal inevitable.
Michael Auslin writes: The deal between Iran, the United States, and the European Union on Tehran’s nuclear program, if it becomes operationalized as scheduled, will ensure that Iran will have nuclear weapons by 2025, if not well before. As Michael Mandelbaum has explained , the Obama Administration’s unwillingness to credibly threaten the use of force against Tehran resulted in the abandonment of decades of U.S. nuclear principles designed to prevent the spread of uranium enrichment, combined with the removal of effective sanctions that squeezed the regime.
“With U.S. diplomacy having midwifed one failed deal and generated a new flawed one, the future will almost certainly see the further spread of nuclear weapons to dangerous regimes.”
By any account, the Vienna negotiations were an unqualified success for Iran. The reason for that is simple: America’s failed bipartisan North Korean policy set a model for would-be proliferators on how to negotiate one’s way to a nuclear weapon. Now, the unwillingness or inability of Washington to learn the lessons of the past appears to ensure that regimes desiring to proliferate have a proven roadmap to follow.
“By any account, the Vienna negotiations were an unqualified success for Iran. The reason for that is simple: America’s failed bipartisan North Korean policy set a model for would-be proliferators on how to negotiate one’s way to a nuclear weapon.”
With U.S. diplomacy having midwifed one failed deal and generated a new flawed one, the future will almost certainly see the further spread of nuclear weapons to dangerous regimes.
[Read the full text here, at The American Interest]
At almost every step of the Iran negotiations, the Obama Administration repeated past mistakes made by it, the Bush, and the Clinton Administrations. To paraphrase Barbara Tuchman, we are witnessing a nuclear march of folly. In order to prevent future similar outcomes, it’s of paramount importance that we understand the North Korean case.
An Iranian worker at the Uranium Conversion Facility at Isfahan. (photo credit: AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)
The first mistake made by successive U.S. administrations, Democratic and Republican alike, in dealing with North Korea was perhaps the fatal one. Each set of U.S. negotiators assumed, or convinced itself, that a deal could be reached that would ultimately persuade Pyongyang to abandon its goal of achieving a nuclear or ballistic missile capability. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: August 26, 2014 Filed under: Politics, Think Tank, U.S. News | Tags: 1964 Civil Rights Act, Albert Gore Sr., Barry Goldwater, Charles B. Rangel, Democratic Party, Democrats, Mona Charen, New York, Republican, Republicans
The unsinkable Representative Charles B. Rangel appeared on C-SPAN over the weekend. Why unsinkable? Well, in 2010 the House of Representatives censured the New York Democrat by a vote of 333 to 79 (when the body was still majority-Democratic) for violating 11 ethics rules and “bringing discredit to the House.” The New York Times called it a “staggering fall” for the senior Democrat. But fall/shmall, he’s since been reelected and will retire at his leisure.
While chatting with Brian Lamb, Rangel dropped a few falsehoods as casually as cigar ash. This isn’t to pick on Rangel; he’s just illustrative. His assertion — that the Republican and Democratic parties “changed sides” in the 1960s on civil rights, with white racists leaving the Democratic party to join the Republicans — has become conventional wisdom. It’s utterly false and should be rebutted at every opportunity.
It’s true that a Democratic president, Lyndon Johnson, shepherded the 1964 Civil Rights Act to passage. But who voted for it? Eighty percent of Republicans in the House voted aye, as against 61 percent of Democrats. In the Senate, 82 percent of Republicans favored the law, but only 69 percent of Democrats. Among the Democrats voting nay were Albert Gore Sr., Robert Byrd, and J. William Fulbright. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: July 12, 2014 Filed under: Censorship, Humor, Mediasphere, Politics, The Butcher's Notebook | Tags: Americans for Responsible Solutions, Dana Milbank, Democratic Party, Doc Hastings, Estakio Beltran, Gabrielle Giffords, Paul Krugman, Republican, Sarah Palin
Oops! I guess being in the national spotlight made what started as a self-inflicted political blunder turn into a full-scale campaign catastrophe. “My name’s Estakio Beltran, and I approved this message.”
Washington Examiner‘s T. Becket Adams contributes to embarrassing a reckless Washington state congressional candidate. Does he stand by his message? Well, no. He yanked the YouTube link, as illustrated in the screen cap above. The Yakima Herald reports that Beltran pulled the ad on Saturday after Americans for Responsible Solutions, a pro-gun control group, criticized it. Here’s how Beltran‘s (now removed) ad begins:
“They say I can’t win in this district.”
Estakio Beltran might as well have added “so let me take this opportunity to prove them right.”
Read Adam‘s full Examiner article here.
“But what happens to an elephant that stands around doing nothing for too long?” he asked, referring to Republican Rep. Doc Hastings of Washington’s 4th District.
The Democratic candidate pulls the trigger and blows away the elephant.
The Seattle Times blog asks, Funny or offensive? and invites readers to opine. Double standard? You bet.
UPDATE: Breitbart‘s Awr Hawkins has this item:
According to The Seattle Times, the backlash over the imagery of the “Republican Party Symbol” has been heaviest among conservatives, who say the Democrats “would flip out if a GOP candidate blasted away at a symbol of the [Democrat] Party.”
Understandable, yes, it’d be a Democrats-with-hair-on-fire cuckoo-bananas flip out.
Beltran pulled the ad on Saturday after Americans for Responsible Solutions, a pro-gun control group headed by former congresswoman Gabby Giffords, stridently criticized it.
“Mr. Beltran’s ad showing him shooting a stuffed elephant — the longtime symbol of the Republican Party — is irresponsible and offensive. This kind of misguided imagery and rhetoric on both sides of the political spectrum just furthers the lack of balance in our nation’s debate about guns,” a statement from Americans for Responsible Solutions read…(read more)
T. Becket Adams continues,
…this is slightly different from shooting a copy of the Affordable Care Act. There’s the Imagery of the party mascot and the suggestion that “this is what happens” to incumbent Republican politicians…
…Remember: Hours after Jared Loughner on Jan. 8, 2011, opened fire on a crowd in Casas Adobes, Ariz., killing six people and injuring 13, including Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, economist Paul Krugman penned a blog post blaming former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin:
Just yesterday, Ezra Klein remarked that opposition to health reform was getting scary. Actually, it’s been scary for quite a while, in a way that already reminded many of us of the climate that preceded the Oklahoma City bombing. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: June 16, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Big Government, Blackstone Group, Center for Responsive Politics, Chuck Schumer, Democratic Party, Eric Cantor, Financial Services Forum, New York City, Republican, Wall Street
For the Washington Examiner, Timothy P. Carney writes: Eric Cantor‘s single largest source of campaign contributions was Blackstone Group, the high-rolling financial titan in Midtown Manhattan.
Dave Brat‘s largest source of campaign cash was Baugh Auto Body on West Broad Street in Richmond.
Brat’s stunning landslide win over Cantor in the June 10 primary gives Republicans the opportunity to change from being the party of Blackstone to the party of Baugh.
“Cantor’s closeness to Wall Street was supposed to be a strength. It proved a liability. This is true for the GOP as a whole.”
Brat beat Cantor, despite being outspent $5.5 million to $250,000, by running against corporate welfare. “I will fight to end crony capitalist programs that benefit the rich and powerful,” Brat said in his victory speech Tuesday night.
“Cantor’s defeat is the opportunity for the Republican Party to declare independence from Wall Street. Let the bankers flock to Hillary Clinton and Schumer.”
Brat explained on the trail that he’s pro-business, but “I’m against Big Business in bed with Big Government.”
Of Wall Street bankers who precipitated the 2008 crisis, Brat said, “instead of going to jail, they went on Eric’s Rolodex.” Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: June 15, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Crony capitalism, Dave Brat, Eric Cantor, Export-Import Bank of the United States, Financial Services, Republican, Republican Party (United States), Wall Street
Cantor’s Nexus Between Congress and Wall Street Led to Loss
Cantor’s relationship with the financial industry and his support of institutions such as the Export-Import Bank became a “symbol of crony capitalism” for his challenger Dave Brat and his constituents, Will said on Fox News Sunday…
“Cantor is the nexus between the Republicans in the House and Wall Street and the financial community…this man is an insider not paying attention to normal people.”
…As a result, voters wanted Cantor out….(read more)
National Review Online
Posted: June 11, 2014 Filed under: Politics, Think Tank | Tags: Arnold Schwarzenegger, California, Goldman Sachs, GOP, Jerry Brown, Neel Kashkari, Republican, Washington Wire
California Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari. Reuters
For Washington Wire, Rhodes Cook writes: California has long been a dead zone for Republicans. The GOP has not carried it in a presidential or Senate election since 1988. The only Republican to win the governorship since 1994 is Arnold Schwarzenegger, who cultivated a distinct brand of his own. And the GOP holds only 28% of California’s U.S. House seats (15 out of 53), which matches its share of registered voters in the nation’s most populous state.
Yet in last Tuesday’s primary returns, there were inklings that the California GOP might be ready to launch a comeback. Neel Kashkari, a 40-year-old Hindu of Indian descent, emerged as the Republican gubernatorial nominee. He is an intriguing choice in a minority-majority state such as California. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 31, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Breitbart.com, Log Cabin Republicans, Metroplex Republicans, Party platform, Republican, Republican Party (United States), Texas, Twitter
For Breitbart.com, Patrick Kane reports: On Thursday in a joint press release with The Metroplex Republicans, officials from The Log Cabin Republicans addressed being denied a booth at the Texas GOP Convention. Executive Director of the Log Cabin Republicans, Gregory T. Angelo, told Breitbart Texas that his “blood is boiling” over being denied a spot for representing gay Republicans.
“I would guess that most Republicans wouldn’t even know that language exists in the platform, let alone support it.”
— Gregory T. Angelo
According to Angelo, both the Log Cabin Republicans and the Metroplex Republicans applied for spaces at the upcoming June convention. “The Log Cabin Republicans were denied a space outright”, said Angelo. “But the Metroplex Republicans were granted an exhibitor space.” This space however, would be revoked once convention organizers learned that the group represented both straight and gay Republicans. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 8, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Bloomberg Businessweek, Daily Caller, Daily Signal, Heritage Foundation, Jim DeMint, National Review, Republican, South Carolina, Ted Cruz, Wall Street Journal, Weekly Standard
Photograph by Matt Eich for Bloomberg Businessweek
Bluey, Lysaught, and Trinko at the Daily Signal headquarters
For Businessweek, Joshua Green writes: Last year the conservative Heritage Foundation had more influence on the direction of the Republican Party than just about anyone else—and not necessarily for the better. Over the summer, the conservative think tank’s president, former South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, teamed up with Texas Senator Ted Cruz and other lawmakers on a cross-country tour to convince party activists, and eventually GOP leaders, that they could stop Obamacare by refusing to fund it.
“We came to the realization that the mainstream media had really abdicated the responsibility to do the news and do it well.”
DeMint forced a showdown because he wanted Republicans to unify around his vision of an unapologetic hardline conservatism—a vision he thinks most Americans will support if given the chance. That led to a government shutdown, a collapse of conservative will, and plenty of angry recriminations from fellow Republicans.
Heritage, run by former Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC), hopes a sleeker, more mobile-friendly design will help the site appeal beyond the conservative demographic catered to by sites like Breitbart and The Daily Caller.
“We plan to do political and policy news, not with a conservative bent, but just true, straight-down-the-middle journalism.”
— Geoffrey Lysaught
Now Heritage has a new plan to exert its influence and, its leaders hope, win converts to the cause. On June 3 it will begin publishing the Daily Signal, a new digital news site whose primary focus will be straight reporting. “We came to the realization that the mainstream media had really abdicated the responsibility to do the news and do it well,” says Geoffrey Lysaught, vice president of strategic communications at the Heritage Foundation, who will also serve as publisher. The site aims to rectify the conservative perception that mainstream news slants to the left. “We plan to do political and policy news,” says Lysaught, “not with a conservative bent, but just true, straight-down-the-middle journalism.”
How does this help Heritage? The Daily Signal will also publish an opinion section aimed at a younger audience that isn’t thumbing through the editorial pages of theWall Street Journal. Heritage is betting that these readers, attracted to the Daily Signal’s news, will find themselves persuaded by the conservative commentary and analysis that will draw on the think tank’s scholars and researchers. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 7, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics | Tags: 2010 Senate race, Crist, Democrat, Florida Governor, Republican, Rubio, YouTube
…Crist, who had served as Florida’s Republican governor (and previously as attorney general) since 2007, switched to an independent during the 2010 Senate race after it became apparent Rubio would likely win the nomination. In 2012, Crist endorsed President Obama and became a Democrat…(read more)
National Review Online
Posted: May 7, 2014 Filed under: Breaking News, Law & Justice, Mediasphere, Politics | Tags: Contempt of Congress, Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution, Internal Revenue Service, Lerner, Lois Lerner, New York Times, Republican, United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
Giving it to you straight, is Mediaite:
The House of Representatives voted 231-187 tonight to hold former IRS official Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress, weeks after the House Oversight Committee voted to bring the contempt charge to the House floor. The point of contention is whether Lerner waived her Fifth Amendment rights during hearings into IRS political targeting. In addition to the contempt charge, last month the House Ways and Means Committee voted to refer Lerner to the Justice Department for a possible investigation into criminal charges.
Josh Feldman – Mediaite
For the more comforting pro-Democrat spin, try the NYT. Their headline: “House Holds Ex-I.R.S. Official in Contempt (in what the NYTimes, and only the NYTimes calls) the “Tea Party Case“.
Written by Jeremy W. Peters, it’s crafted to be the least upsetting to their Tea-Party hating readers. It’s meant to reassure them that it’s not a real hearing, about real crimes, it’s 100% political, lead by mean, witch-hunting, conspiracy-deranged Republicans, against innocent, law-abiding, hard-working servants of the people. Thank goodness it’s not about Lois Lerner’s accountability, or abuses against citizens by the IRS.
It includes this photo of an “angry-looking” Republican white male:
Here’s some choice quotes:
“Democrats invoked former Senator Joseph R. McCarthy and delusions of widespread conspiracy.”
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 7, 2014 Filed under: Politics, Think Tank, U.S. News | Tags: Alex Sink, Big Data, Bill Young, Data center, GOP, Obama, Republican, Republican National Committee, RNC, Swing state
This is either a promising sign of intelligently retooling after last election’s inferior ground game, or a carnival of chaos just waiting to happen. Let’s hope it’s the former.
In this Breitbart News Exclusive, Matthew Boyle writes:
The Republican National Committee (RNC) is launching a sophisticated new data program called “Victory 365” to link 200 full-time field staffers with reams of voter statistics. The effort is modeled after President Obama’s successful use of analytics to help drive election-day turnout.
The party org will be rolling out the new plan at its spring meetings in Memphis, Tennessee, and was announced late Tuesday exclusively at Breitbart News.
The RNC’s plan focuses first on “better data” by investing millions of dollars in its “ONEData” program.
Secondly, it will include new tools like smartphone applications in certain targeted states designed to help voter canvassing by volunteers knocking on doors in battleground states, along with new “query tools” called the “GOP Data Center” and “Beacon” to all 50 states and U.S. territories. The RNC says these tools will help candidates and committees develop analytics-based campaign plans.
The third plank is what the RNC calls “predictive analytics,” which officials say use “data science” to predict voter behavior. The RNC used predictive analytics in the recent special election to succeed deceased Rep. Bill Young (R-FL), where David Jolly beat Democrat Alex Sink. Officials say the RNC analytics program accurately predicted the election results down to within less than 500 votes. That program can be a useful tool for Republican candidates’ campaigns looking to map out strategies weeks, months, or days ahead of an election while making the tough decisions to determine where to target often scarce campaign resources. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: May 1, 2014 Filed under: History, Mediasphere, Politics, War Room, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Benghazi, Nixon, Republican, United States, Watergate, Watergate scandal, White House
“It’s to me the equivalent of what was discovered with the Nixon tapes.”
“The point is that Republicans have done a terrible job in building the case. Even today I have to say, the questioning was disjointed, it was not organized. If they had appointed a special committee a long time ago the way it was done in Watergate, you would have had answers…”
National Review Online
Posted: April 27, 2014 Filed under: Education, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Boston Tea Party, Harvard Institute of Politics, Kentucky, National Review, Patriot Act, Rand Paul, Republican, Republican Party (United States)
For NRO, A.J. Kritikos writes: On Friday afternoon, Kentucky senator Rand Paul spoke at Harvard’s Institute of Politics. Despite the libertarian and conservative arguments he put forth to the Cambridge audience, he was received warmly, though his more detailed legal arguments on national-security issues need some fine-tuning.
Senator Paul’s prepared remarks primarily addressed privacy and national-security issues, beginning, appropriately enough, by alluding to the Boston Tea Party. After describing how the British used general warrants to harass colonists, and the subsequent writings of James Otis on the topic that helped catalyze opposition to the Crown, Senator Paul addressed privacy concerns that have arisen since 9/11. The checks and balances required by the Constitution, in his view, have been partially abandoned in response to the threat of terrorism, highlighting the Patriot Act as an example.
That law was part of counterterrorism efforts responding to 9/11 that Paul characterized as being marked by “hysteria.” While the law certainly was enacted rapidly, suggesting that America has been hysterical in its pursuit of al-Qaeda and its associates seems more reminiscent of his father than the more mainstream image Senator Paul has sought to cultivate. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 21, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Alaska, Barack Obama, Democratic, Democrats, Mid-terms, North Carolina, Republican, South Dakota
For Breitbart.com, Mike Flynn writes: In even a neutral political environment, the 2014 midterms were going to be a challenge for Senate Democrats. They are defending 21 seats to the GOP’s 15, with only two of the Republican seats at any kind of risk of flipping to the Democrats. Moreover, Democrats were defending many freshman Senators who first won office in in Republican states in Obama’s wave election in 2008.
This isn’t a neutral political environment, however. Obama’s low approval ratings, the continued fallout over ObamaCare, current Democrat happy-talk notwithstanding, and the sluggish economy have provided Republicans with an enthusiasm and turnout advantage that could match 2010. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 18, 2014 Filed under: Politics | Tags: Bill Clinton, Clinton, Democratic Party, GOP, Hillary Clinton, Republican
Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Lima, Peru. (Karel Navarro/Associated Press)
Aaron Blake writes: A new poll shows former secretary of state Hillary Clinton’s (D) numbers hitting their lowest point in six years.
Meanwhile, it finds that the Republican Party is experiencing something of a renaissance.
The Fox News poll, from Democratic pollster Anderson Robbins Research and GOP pollster Shaw & Company, shows Clinton’s favorable rating dropping to 49 percent, compared to 45 percent unfavorable.
The last time her numbers were in that ballpark was during the 2008 Democratic presidential primary race. After she ended her campaign, her favorable/unfavorable split was 47/46.
Other polls have shown Clinton’s numbers — which were stellar during her time as secretary of state — steadily dropping since she left her post last year. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 13, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Bob Woodward, Internal Revenue Service, IRS scandal, National Review, Republican, Washington, Washington Post, Woodward
The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward knows a thing or two about investigating Washington scandals, and he believes the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of conservative groups merits a deeper look.
“We should dig in to it — there should be answers. For the president to take that position is very, very unusual and say there’s not a ’smidgen of evidence here.’”
Woodward raised questions about the Republican House committees’ ability to properly and effectively carry out such an investigation…
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 3, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Democratic Party (United States), GOP, Jonah Goldberg, National Review, Republican, Republican Party (United States)
The notion that anything the President says would be credible, or relevant, to anyone but a predictable minority of the public, about 35% — hard core partisan Democrat supporters — is wishful thinking. The rhetorical ‘straw man’ argument remains his favorite device. Campaigning against an imaginary opponent, for hollow applause.
Almost No Evidence Obama Wants a Compromise with the GOP
Posted: March 28, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, Colorado, Cory Gardner, GOP, Mark Udall, Republican, Senate
Republicans could win the midterms without fixing the party’s problems.
Charlie Cook writes: …Amy Walter wrote a piece about Republicans who worry privately that success in 2014 will leave their party with false hope for 2016: “Even though their party is poised to hold the House and has a good chance of winning control of the Senate, these Republican umbrella carriers aren’t smiling. They worry that success in 2014 will mask the real, structural problems that Republicans need to fix before 2016. Namely, that the party doesn’t stand for much more than standing against President Obama. As important, the GOP heads into 2016 with a brand that has been deeply tarnished and not easily repaired.”
“Republicans do great among those 65 years of age and older, and well among those between 45 and 64. However, they are getting crushed among those between 18 and 29, as well as losing 30-to-44-year-olds…”
This is so true. If Republicans do gain a Senate majority, which they may very well do in November, and manage to pick up eight or more House seats, it will be because of who they are not, not because of who they are. They aren’t in Obama’s party, and they aren’t in the party that unilaterally passed the Affordable Care Act, which, like the president, is unpopular. Republicans may win a bunch of races without measurably improving their party’s “brand” and without making any clear progress among minority, young, moderate, and female voters. The fact that midterm electorates are generally older, whiter, and more conservative than their counterparts in presidential elections exacerbates the difference between the world of 2014 and the one that will exist in 2016. The Republicans can win in 2014 without having fixed their problems. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: March 28, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Cruz, Obama, President, Republican, Ted Cruz, Texas, The Washington Examiner
“We can either choose to keep our head down, and not rock the boat, to not stand for anything, or we can stand for principle.”
Sen. Ted Cruz has released a dynamic new video featuring highlights of the senator’s biggest moments…
“Yes, we can.”
…echoing President Obama’s 2008 campaign slogan….
Posted: March 22, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, California, Democratic, Democrats, GOP, Reince Priebus, Republican, Republican National Committee
Republicans are trying to copy an operation that the Democrats have been building, perfecting and training on for 10 years. (Getty Images)
This article caught my eye, mainly because of the bitchin’ headline. Souped-up. Yes, if the GOP can assemble a souped-up campaign Hot-Rod, in the old establishment’s spare garage, then things could be interesting.
David M. Drucker reports:
If Republicans win control of the Senate in November, they could owe their victory to a bunch of computer geeks and data nerds holed up in two offices 2,800 miles apart.
“We can’t, as a national committee, get to becoming a better presidential party unless I can build the tools, the data, the infrastructure, right now, in 2014…”
— Reince Priebus
The Republicans need to flip six seats to wrest the Senate majority from the Democrats on a playing field that is expanding in the GOP’s favor. Up to a dozen Democratic-held seats could be up for grabs — more than half of them in red states — as voters continue to sour on President Obama‘s leadership, health care law and stewardship of the economy. Only two Republican seats threaten to be competitive.
“We committed ourselves to a permanent, coast-to-coast, year-round ground game.”
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: February 25, 2014 Filed under: History, Law & Justice, Mediasphere | Tags: African American, Black History, Congress, Hiram Rhodes Revels, Methodist, Mississippi, race, Republican, Senate, United States Senate
February 25th 1870: Hiram Rhodes Revels, first African-American to sit in Congress, inaugurated
On this day in 1870 Hiram Rhodes Revels, the first African-American to sit in Congress, was inaugurated into the Senate. Before he was elected to the Senate, Revels was a Methodist minister and led black Union regiments during the Civil War. Revels gained his post after the Mississippi state legislature voted for Revels to fill one of the state’s Senate seats which had been vacant since Mississippi seceded. His appointment was initially resisted by the United States Senate, and his legitimacy was debated for several days. On February 25th, the Senate voted to allow Revels to take up his seat, with only Republicans voting for him and Democrats against. His inauguration that day received a standing ovation as the Senate witnessed the first African-American member of Congress joining their ranks. Revels served one term in the Senate, consistently pushing for racial equality, until he resigned in 1871 to become a college president.
Posted: February 13, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Carl DeMaio, DeMaio, New Hampshire, Republican, Richard Tisei, Scott Peters, Wall Street Journal
WSJ’s Patrick O’Connor writes: Carl DeMaio is one of three openly gay Republicans running for Congress this year, and he would be at least the third to serve in the House if he wins. But Mr. DeMaio on Thursday will take a step that none of them has, airing a campaign ad that features a shot of him with his same-sex partner.
The clips are brief: A shot of Mr. DeMaio holding hands with his partner, Johnathan Hale, as they march in a gay pride parade in 2012, followed by a clip of the San Diego candidate waving a rainbow flag that symbolizes the gay-rights movement.
“People are interested in us because they think we can be catalysts for change in the party…The party is at a tipping point…”
Carl DeMaio is a former San Diego council member but it’s as a Republican congressional candidate that he’s doing something nobody has done before: appear in a campaign commercial with his same-sex partner.
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: February 9, 2014 Filed under: Law & Justice, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, Bob Schieffer, John Boehner, Kelly Ayotte, New Hampshire, Republican, Senate, Tea Party
Matthew Boyle reports: Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) says she agrees that Republicans can’t trust President Obama to enforce the law, but they should immediately move forward on comprehensive immigration reform, anyway.
“Here’s the deal: The status quo is totally unacceptable,” Ayotte said on CBS News’ Face The Nation with Bob Schieffer on Sunday.
Ayotte, who rode the Tea Party wave in 2010 to her election to the Senate but has emerged as one of the upper chamber’s more liberal Republicans, conceded there is a “trust deficit” with Obama.
“There’s a trust deficit that the Speaker is facing right now and it’s related to ObamaCare and the disastrous rollout,” she said. “Because, let’s think about it, immigration means doing a lot of complex things well. And in addition to that, the administration keeps issuing executive orders to change the law, very frequently.”
However, Ayotte insisted the GOP should move forward anyway.
“I think we should solve this,” she continued. “I think [Boehner] can find a way forward. Certainly, the bill that came out of the Senate was not perfect, but it was a good solution to a hard problem. I think it’s an important issue to solve – not only for the country, but for the Republican Party.”
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: January 29, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, John Boehner, John McCain, Obama, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Republican, Ted Cruz, United States Congress
Alexander Bolton reports: Congressional Republicans are taking President Obama to court over his use of executive power to sidestep Congress.
The executive actions that Obama touted during the State of the Union speech are adding fresh urgency to the legal efforts of Republicans, who say he is using the authority of his office in unprecedented ways.
“We can go to court,” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said. “We haven’t got many more options except [to] tell the American people that we’re seeing an abuse of the intent of the Constitution.”
Republicans have launched a salvo of legal actions to challenge the president on issues ranging from the implementation of the Affordable Care Act to the National Security Agency’s (NSA) surveillance programs.
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: January 28, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, Think Tank | Tags: Democratic, Ed Morrissey, Hot Air, Republican, Senate, United States, United States Congress
About this chart, Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey concludes: “This is evidence of correlation, not causation … but it’s an intriguing correlation. Be sure to read Jeff’s post for the explanations of methodology.”
Jeff concludes: “Vote Republican: help America regain trust in Congress.”
Here’s Jeff’s post, from his blog The Voice in My Head:
Back in July of 2010 I used the occasion of a Gallup Poll on the trust Americans have in various institutions, as related by a post Ed Morrissey did at Hot Air, to compare that trust in the US Congress with the number of Republicans serving in the Senate.
Well, this morning there was another Morrissey post that caught my eye. In a post about Congressional approval ratings, Ed writes:
Here’s the problem with this analysis of the poll, however — Congressional approval ratings always stink. These may stink more than usual, but the 90%+ reelection rate for Congressional incumbents is probably not in serious danger, except perhaps in the Senate, where the numbers don’t favor Democrats.
We’ve had a couple more elections since my 2010 post, so let’s run those numbers again.
Posted: January 25, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Alex Sink, Barack Obama, California, Democrat, Democratic, Democrats, Election Day, GOP, Mia Love, Mike Honda, Mike Simpson, Pete Aguilar, Republican
Utah: Repeat GOP candidate Mia Love, who would be the first African-American Republican woman in Congress if she won, is now the biggest early favorite to become a House freshman in 2015.
Scott Bland writes: Ten months from Election Day, uncertainty is the watchword in the House of Representatives. Democrats look very unlikely to pick up the 17 seats they would need to retake the House majority, and they could lose seats, with the generic-ballot average settling into a slim Republican advantage after a tumultuous fall. But the speed of earlier movement against both parties shows why it would be foolish to assume what’s true today will be true in 10 months.
A race-by-race look at the House landscape also helps explain why things are unsettled. As far as we see it, there is only one slam-dunk pickup that either side can more or less count on right now. The GOP’s generic-ballot advantage and a large class of Democratic freshmen in battleground districts (the party picked up eight seats in 2012) has given Republicans a greater number of targets in top races. But recent GOP retirements in some blue-tinged districts have them especially worried—and Democrats licking their chops—about control in certain regions (though one retirement, by controversial Minnesota Republican MicheleBachmann, actually took her seat out of the battleground column and back to safe GOP territory). Strategists in both parties, meanwhile, worry that they don’t have candidates capable of grabbing some of the tougher districts on the table.
Most interesting of all, Democrats have few pickup opportunities in the Northeast, their strongest area, while Republicans will target few districts in the South. That’s because they’ve already won most of them, a long-term trend reinforced by “dual waves” in different parts of the country in 2012. Democrats hold every seat in New England right now, and the GOP Conference is more Southern—and the South more Republican—than ever in the history of the Republican Party.
These rankings place districts in order starting with the most likely to switch partisan control. Thus, some hotly contested races—like Rep. Mike Honda‘s challenge from a fellow California Democrat and Rep. Mike Simpson‘s challenge from a fellow Idaho Republican—are not on this list. This being an early look, we are only going 30 races deep, but there are one or two dozen more that could definitely be competitive in November. We examined a multitude of factors to choose and place battleground districts on this list: public and private polling, candidates’ fundraising ability, advertising patterns and outside group involvement, local media coverage, and months of cumulative reporting andanalysis.
These 30 races will determine which party controls the House in 2015.(Richard A. Bloom)
Without further ado, let’s begin with the congressional district most likely to flip from one party to the other this November:
1. Utah-04—Rep. Jim Matheson (D) is retiring
Nothing is certain in politics, but Matheson’s retirement basically cedes the seat to Republicans. Without his brand name, it’s very difficult to imagine a Democrat overcoming the party’s poor performance levels in this state and district. (President Obama just cleared 30 percent here in 2012, making it his 25th-worst district in the country.) Repeat GOP candidate Mia Love, who would be the first African-American Republican woman in Congress if she won, is now the biggest early favorite to become a House freshman in 2015, though Matheson’s decision could spur some more GOP interest in the seat.
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Posted: January 16, 2014 Filed under: Law & Justice, Politics, The Butcher's Notebook, White House | Tags: Fundraising, GOP, Humor, Justice, Lawsuit, Obama, Republican, RNC
A letter from the RNC. I decorated it a little…
Posted: January 15, 2014 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News, White House | Tags: Bohner, Congress, Constitution, Democrat, media, Obama, Politics, Republican, Senate
Posted: January 11, 2014 Filed under: Politics, U.S. News, White House | Tags: Barack Obama, Democratic, Democrats, Jack Dorsey, Republican, San Francisco, Silicon Valley
President Barack Obama holds up a Facebook hoodie sweater that was given to him by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, right, during a town hall meeting at Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Joel Kotkin writes: Much has been written, often with considerable glee, about the worsening divide in the Republican Party between its corporate and Tea Party wings. Yet the Democrats may soon face their own schism as a result of the growing power in the party of high-tech business interests.
Gaining the support of tech moguls is a huge win for the Democrats — at least initially. They are not only a huge source of money, they also can provide critical expertise that the Republicans have been far slower to employ. There have always been affluent individuals who backed liberal or Democratic causes, either out of conviction or self-interest, but the tech moguls may be the first large capitalist constituency outside Hollywood to identify almost entirely with the progressives.
This alliance of high tech and Democrats is relatively new. In the 1970s and 1980s the politics of Silicon Valley’s leaders tended more to middle-of-the-road Republican. But the new generation oligarchs are very different from the traditional “propeller heads” who once populated the Valley. More media savvy and less dependent on manufacturing, the new leaders have less interest in the kind of infrastructure and business policies generally favored by more traditional businesses. They also tend to have progressive views on gay marriage and climate change that align with the gospel of the Obama Democratic Party.
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Posted: December 31, 2013 Filed under: Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Cato Institute, David Boaz, Justin Amash, Libertarianism, Nick Gillespie, Republican, Tea Party, United States
Kevin Glass reports: The Brookings Institution‘s Public Religion Research Institute conducts what they call the “American Values Survey,” and this year have focused particularly on how libertarians fit into the American political fabric. Libertarians are traditionally thought of as being “on the right” and presumed to be most accurately represented, of the two major parties, by the Republican Party.
But is that really true?
PRRI finds that libertarians constitute a very small segment of the GOP and have difficulty making common cause with the other ideological strains of the Republican Party. Specifically, libertarians are repelled by the religious right, which still makes up a significan portion of the conservative movement.
As Brookings’ Ross Tilchin writes:
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Posted: December 23, 2013 Filed under: Economics, Mediasphere, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: DEBT, Democratic Party (United States), Republican, Republican Party (United States), Tom Coburn, United States debt ceiling, Washington, White House
Eliana Johnson writes: GOP senator Tom Coburn hinted on Sunday that Republicans will give in to Democratic demands in the upcoming negotiations on the debt ceiling because the two parties have come to see eye-to-eye on the issue. “The reason we’re in trouble on deficits and debt is not because we didn’t agree but because we did. We agreed to spend $740 billion we didn’t have last year,” he said. “The story coming out of Washington is we don’t get along. We get along just fine with the status quo of the government being ineffective and inefficient.”
The October agreement to end the government shutdown raised the debt ceiling until February 7. The White House has said that it will not negotiate over the debt limit, and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is calling on lawmakers to raise it in advance of the February deadline.
Coburn also suggested that the issue has become a losing one politically for Republicans. ”The American people don’t believe we have a debt ceiling because we always increase it,” he said.
National Review Online
Posted: December 9, 2013 Filed under: Law & Justice, Mediasphere, Politics, Think Tank | Tags: Angelo Codevilla, California, Codevilla, Daily Caller, Democratic Party, Facebook, Republican, United States
Ginni Thomas writes: The Republican Party’s leadership is more concerned with threats to its power than threats to liberty, according to Angelo Codevilla, author of “The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can Do About It.”
“The Republican establishment most certainly does not see any threats to liberty, because it doesn’t care about threats to liberty,” Codevilla said in a phone interview from his California home last week. “Being part of the ruling class, it is more concerned with threats to power.”
The disconnect between the base of voters who expect Republicans to fight for limited government and the behavior of Republican politicians is growing more pronounced, he explained.
“Why is the Republican leadership part of the ruling class? Because it has constituents other than Republican voters,” he said. “And these constituents are the large corporations and the various monied interests that happen to be the same as the people who support the Democratic Party.”
Codevilla also described the lure of power: “There is also another factor — and that is the attraction of power, the attraction of prestige, the attraction of favorable treatment by the media, easy access to the universities and to the prestigious foundations, to the best dinner parties, the A-list in Washington, etc. These things are enormously attractive.”
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Posted: December 6, 2013 Filed under: Law & Justice, Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Congress, Cornell University, Democratic, Gallup, GOP, Republican, Senate, Susan Collins
Danielle Thomsen writes: According to a new Gallup poll, Americans are more frustrated with Congress than ever before. In the aftermath of the government shutdown in October, who can blame them? Here is one solution for all those who are fed up with the dysfunction of Congress: Elect more Republicans.
Well, not just any Republicans. Elect more Republican women.
This may sound surprising to those who blame the GOP for the government shutdown. Yet as you may recall, a group of female senators led by Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine has been credited for moving beyond obstructionist politics and compromising to reach a deal to reopen the government.
Soon after the shutdown ended, the Scholars Strategy Network released a brief by political scientists Craig Volden of the University of Virginia and Alan Wiseman of Vanderbilt University showing that women are more effective legislators than their male counterparts.
But it isn’t that simple. To maximize the effectiveness of women in office, we must focus on recruiting, training, supporting and electing more Republican women to Congress. While there is a dearth of females in Congress, Democratic congresswomen now outnumber Republican congresswomen more than three to one in the House and four to one in the Senate. Read the rest of this entry »