Two Parties Working Together Against The American Working Man

The Daily Caller posted a story today about the delay of the Senate vote on the budget until Monday. As usual, the delay is caused by the obstructionism of Harry Reid. Unfortunately, some of the establishment Republicans are also in agreement with Senator Reid.

The article reports:

Democratic and GOP leaders in the Senate are delaying a vote on the huge 2015 government budget until Monday because they’re trying to block a floor vote on President Barack Obama’s unpopular amnesty of 12 million illegals.

The leaders may be able to avoid a direct vote on the unpopular amnesty, but they likely will be forced to vote on whether there should be a vote on blocking funds for the amnesty, and a vote on whether the amnesty is constitutional.

There are many establishment Republicans who support amnesty because it will bring low-wage workers into America and increase corporate profits. There does not seem to be a lot of concern for the Americans who will lose their jobs because of this. The Democrats support amnesty because they are looking for future Democrat voters–those receiving amnesty will eventually be granted the right to vote.

The article explains:

Three diverse GOP Senators are pushing for amnesty votes — Utah Sen. Mike Lee, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions.

They’re backed up by some sympathetic GOP Senators, and by voters who paralyzed the Capitol Hill switchboard on Thursday. That’s when the House’s GOP leader. Rep. John Boehner joined with Obama to strong-arm House approval for the $1.1 trillion bill, which doesn’t include any language barring spending on Obama’s amnesty.

…GOP leader Mitch McConnell isn’t supporting Lee, Sessions or Cruz because he’s backing Obama’s de-facto amnesty of 12 million migrants.

The amnesty reduces one major obstacle to the GOP’s very unpopular goal of adding huge numbers of foreign workers to the nation’s slack labor market. Since at least 2006, Democrats have said they will oppose business’ demand for extra foreign workers unless the foreign workers are allowed to vote in future elections.

But Obama is trying to provide work-permits for 5 million migrants by granting en-masse individual exemptions from immigration law. He’s also telling an additional 7 million illegals, plus people who overstay their work-visas, that he won’t repatriate them unless they commit major crimes or pose a national security threat.

Unsurprisingly, the amnesty is unpopular among Americans, including the voters needed by the GOP to win the 2016 presidential election.

I don’t support a third political party–what I do support is a conservative takeover of the Republican party.

Playing Politics With National Security

Senator Diane Feinstein chose to release the Senate Intelligence Committee majority report of Central Intelligence Agency detention and interrogation after 9/11 yesterday. Today’s Wall Street Journal posted two editorials on the release of the report–one editorial entitled, “Spooks of the Senate,” and one opinion piece by former CIA Directors George J. Tenet, Porter J. Goss and Michael V. Hayden (a retired Air Force general) and former CIA Deputy Directors John E. McLaughlin, Albert M. Calland (a retired Navy vice admiral) and Stephen R. Kappes.

The Spooks of the Senate piece points out:

It (the report) devotes 6,000 pages to marshalling evidence to indict the CIA program, and nothing was going to interfere with its appointed verdict.

Not former CIA directors, who weren’t even interviewed (see the op-ed nearby). Not the virtues of bipartisanship, as the GOP minority staff were reduced to bystanders (see the minority report). And not the requirements of future security, which have been sacrificed to the immediate need to embarrass the agency to prove that Democrats were right.

The worst CIA failing in the report is poor management and a lack of adequate oversight. Junior officials were put in charge of detainees when wiser hands were needed, and in one case a detainee died from hypothermia. This may have resulted from the rapid CIA recruitment after 9/11, but it is a major failing, especially given the political backlash that CIA leaders knew was inevitable.

The opinion piece by the former Directors reminds us:

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on Central Intelligence Agency detention and interrogation of terrorists, prepared only by the Democratic majority staff, is a missed opportunity to deliver a serious and balanced study of an important public policy question. The committee has given us instead a one-sided study marred by errors of fact and interpretation—essentially a poorly done and partisan attack on the agency that has done the most to protect America after the 9/11 attacks.

Examining how the CIA handled these matters is an important subject of continuing relevance to a nation still at war. In no way would we claim that we did everything perfectly, especially in the emergency and often-chaotic circumstances we confronted in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. As in all wars, there were undoubtedly things in our program that should not have happened. When we learned of them, we reported such instances to the CIA inspector general or the Justice Department and sought to take corrective action.

The country and the CIA would have benefited from a more balanced study of these programs and a corresponding set of recommendations. The committee’s report is not that study. It offers not a single recommendation.

I have no idea what the motive for the undertaking and release of such a biased report was. However, it is time to put political bias aside and get down to the business of defending America. The current crop of Washington ‘leaders’ has run up an unreasonable deficit, cut our military back to a dangerous level, and padded their own nests constantly. There are a few exceptions, but the Democrats and establishment Republicans are working very hard to prevent them from doing anything constructive. It is truly time to clean house in Washington. Watch the voting in the House and the Senate in the next two years and cast your vote accordingly. We need to elect leaders who actually represent us–not their own political and private interests.

There Are A Few Good Men Still In Washington

The more I watch what goes on in Washington, the more I am convinced that we have two political parties–the first consists of Democrats and establishment Republicans, the second consists of conservative Republicans attempting to force Congress to represent the people who voted them into office. The recent budget debates have done nothing to change my view.

The Hill posted an article on Saturday about recent budget negotiations.

The article states:

Appropriators are expected to roll out the legislation early next week, giving critics scant time to figure out what’s inside before they cast their votes by the end of the week. The government would shut down on Dec. 12 without a new funding bill.

“Here we are doing the appropriations bill the last couple days” before a government shutdown, conservative Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-Kansas) said in an interview this week. “That’s not to squeeze Harry Reid. That’s to squeeze us.”

Boehner critics say there’s no reason the Speaker couldn’t have brought the spending package to the floor this past week, giving the House more time to consider it.

But doing so would also give more time for the right to build a case against it.

“They don’t want you to read it, that’s why! You think they want you to analyze all the mischievous items in there?” Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.)  told The Hill.

Representative Jones has been always been a budget hawk. He has unsuccessfully fought the establishment Republicans to cut spending. It is time for Americans who are concerned about the growth of government and the growth of government debt to take a close look at their voting habits. It is time to stop sending people to Washington simply because they have an “R” or a “D” after their name and to choose people for office who will actually represent us. We are running out of time to avoid American bankruptcy.

Distraction Or Scorched Earth Policy?

Today is the day that Jonathan Gruber is expected to testify at a hearing of the House Oversight Committee (The Hill), today is the day that Senate Intelligence Chair Sen. Dianne Feinstein is scheduled to release a report on CIA interrogations of terrorists after the events of September 11, 2001 (The Washington Post), and to top it off, it has now been reported that President Obama has not actually issued an executive order to grant amnesty to up to five million immigrants (World Net Daily).

Which story is supposed to have the attention of the American people and which stories are we supposed to ignore? I am definitely feeling manipulated.

The Hill reports on the scheduled hearings:

After the videos went viral last month, President Obama dismissed Gruber as “some adviser who was never on our staff,” while House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she didn’t even know who he was.

Opponents of ObamaCare say Democrats are changing their story.

They note that Gruber has been to the White House 21 times and met with multiple members of the administration, including Obama, according to visitor logs. Pelosi’s office also cited his work in a 2009 policy analysis.

“Why was Mr. Gruber called an ‘architect’ of ObamaCare by The Washington Post, someone who was lauded by President Obama and cited by then-Speaker Pelosi, and is now just ‘some advisor’? ” Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said in a statement.

As Gruber steps into the line of fire on Tuesday, he might find little protection from Democrats who once paid him nearly as much as the presidential salary for his consulting work.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the committee’s top Democrat, said he would use the hearing to mount a defense of the healthcare law, not Gruber.

Regardless of what Mr. Gruber says about the stupidity of the American voter, we need to get rid of ObamaCare. It may take a circus to wake up the American voter (however, when you consider that half of the Democrats who voted for ObamaCare lost their seats in the last election, Americans may already be awake).

The Washington Post reports on the release of the CIA interrogation report:

With the apparently imminent release of the Feinstein report on CIA interrogations of high-value terrorists a decade ago, let’s consider the situation of intelligence personnel who have been involved, not in that program but in drone strikes against terrorists, conducted in a variety of countries around the world.

They have four sources of direction and protection: Their strikes are authorized by the president, briefed to Congress, deemed lawful by the attorney general and determined useful by the CIA director.

Yet people in the drone program know that co-workers involved in enhanced interrogation had these assurances as well. And the drone program has some distinctive characteristics. Instead of employing waterboarding, stress positions and sleep deprivation, the targets are killed (sometimes with collateral damage to the innocent). President Obama dramatically expanded the use of drones, increasing the proportion of attacks that are “signature strikes” — meaning those authorizing attacks don’t know the identities of the targets, just their likely value.

Some may argue a subtle moral distinction between harshly interrogating a terrorist and blowing his limbs apart. But international human rights groups and legal authorities generally look down on both. The main difference? One is Obama’s favorite program. A few years from now, a new president and new congressional leaders may take a different view.

That is a very good point. Congress had been briefed on these interrogations when they happened. There is no reason to release this report. The report endangers Americans overseas and will cripple the CIA in dealing with future terrorism threats. I wonder how the restrictions put on the CIA today would compare to any restrictions put on the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) during World War II.

Meanwhile, about amnesty, World Net Daily quotes Senator Jeff Sessions:

In remarks made at the Washington office of the government-watchdog group Judicial Watch, Sessions said: “I guess they just whispered in the ear of (DHS Director) Jeh Johnson over at Homeland Security, ‘Just put out a memo. That way we don’t have to enforce the law.’”

The news that Obama had not signed an executive order to carry out the policy he announced to the nation in a televised address Nov. 20 was broken by WND Senior Staff Writer Jerome Corsi last week.

As a result of the president’s use of a memo instead of an official order, the senator observed: “We don’t even have a really significant, direct, legal direction that we can ascertain, precisely what the president is doing. It’s a stunning event in my view.”

…The senator dropped a bombshell last week when he revealed he had learned the Obama administration is opening a facility in Crystal City, Virginia, to implement the president’s amnesty plan.

Sessions discovered the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or USCIS, is hiring 1,000 full-time and permanent staff members to quickly approve illegal immigrants’ applications for amnesty.

Sessions also learned the administration will provide work permits, photo IDs, Social Security and Medicare to illegal immigrants.

He noted that all of those benefits for illegal immigrants had been rejected by Congress.

The Obama administration had initially indicated illegal immigrants would not be eligible for Social Security benefits, but officials were forced to admit the plans after Sessions revealed them.

Welcome to Monday morning under the Obama Administration.

Figuring Out Part Of The Problem

CNS News posted a story yesterday about some recent comments by New York Senator Chuck Schumer.

The article reports:

Schumer said the health care law, popularly known as Obamacare, is “very important” but the timing was wrong, and was not at the “top of the agenda” of the American people.

“We were in the middle of recession. … People were hurting and said ‘What about me? I’m losing my job,’” said Schumer, who spoke as the Democratic Policy Chairman on why his Party was defeated in the 2014 mid-term elections by Republicans.

“Like I said, about 85 percent of all Americans were fine with their health care in 2009, mainly because it was paid for by either the government or their employer – private sector,” said Schumer. “And so the average middle-class voter, they weren’t opposed to doing health care when it started out but it wasn’t at the top of the agenda.”

“Don’t get me wrong,” Schumer also said. “I think it’s a good bill [Obamacare] and I’m proud to have voted for it.”

“But, it should have come later,” said the senator.

That is a very interesting statement. If 85 percent of all Americans were fine with their health care in 2009, why would it have been different if ObamaCare had come later? If 85 percent of Americans were happy with their health care in 2010, should that bill have been passed then? If 85 percent of Americans were happy with their health care, why was a bill necessary? Couldn’t you have found many things that 85 percent of Americans thought needed to be changed?

Senator Schumer goes on to say that the $787-billion federal stimulus was not large enough. Good grief! I think it is obvious that the grass roots message of smaller government and less spending has not gotten through to the Democrats (and unfortunately, a large proportion of the Republicans). If we are going to turn this country around, Washington needs to begin to listen to the average middle class Americans who makes this country work. The policies of the Obama Administration have harmed both the middle class and the lower class, and it is time to admit that those policies do not work. Smaller government benefits everyone–when the government spends less, the people have more to spend. We need to remember that in 2016.

Some Thoughts On That New Car Smell

Yesterday Byron York posted an article at the Washington Examiner about President Obama’s recent comments that a 2016 Democrat Presidential candidate would need that new car smell.

The article states:

President Obama set off ripples in the political world Sunday morning when he said voters in the 2016 presidential race will want “that new car smell.” Speaking with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Obama said in picking a new leader, Americans will “want to drive something off the lot that doesn’t have as much mileage as me.”

President Obama also praised Hillary Clinton’s performance as Secretary of State as he made those comments.

I would like to point out something about that ‘new car smell.’ Just for the record, it is toxic! In February 2012, CBS News reported:

(CBS) Who doesn’t love that factory fresh “new car smell”? It’s so well-liked that air fresheners and sprays have been produced in attempts to reclaim the odor.

…But according to a new study from the nonprofit Ecology Center and HealthyStuff.org, what you might actually be sniffing are toxic fumes from chemicals used to create the car interior.

Meanwhile, back to President Obama’s statement. Despite praising Hillary Clinton’s performance as Secretary of State (which isn’t a surprise, since theoretically the President controls the actions of the Secretary of State), it seems to be common knowledge in Washington that there is no great love between the Clintons and the Obamas. I believe that President Obama (either behind the scenes or obviously) will support Elizabeth Warren as the Democrat candidate for President in 2016. Senator Warren would be able to challenge Hillary Clinton from the left, despite the fact that politically they are not really very far apart. Note that the leaders of the Senate have already put Senator Warren in a leadership position.

Anyway, I am hoping that the new car smell that is toxic in automobiles will also be toxic in Democrat presidential politics.

A Political Gambit That Failed

Politico.com is reporting tonight that the Keystone XL Pipeline has been defeated in the Senate. The bill received 59 votes–not the 60 needed to break a filibuster. The bill had been sitting on Harry Reid‘s desk for years–he would not bring it to the floor after it passed the House of Representatives.

The article reports:

The defeat deals a blow to Landrieu’s campaign ahead of her Dec. 6 runoff against GOP Rep. Bill Cassidy, whom polls show running comfortably ahead. Winning on Keystone would have helped her demonstrate her clout on the Hill as a champion of her state’s influential oil and gas industry.

The Republicans will bring the bill up again when they take control of the Senate. At that time, they will aim for a veto-proof majority vote.

The article also illustrates some divisions in the Democrat party:

The bill’s failure left a bad taste in the mouth of centrist Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.), who had urged his colleagues in a closed door meeting to support it.

“This was ridiculous for us to [get] 59, one short. It really was uncalled for,” he said. “And those were some passionate conversations that we had in there. They were respectful and they were very passionate that we had in the caucus, and I would have thought it would have changed [the vote].”

Passing the bill will help American energy independence and will boost the American economy. Hopefully, it can be passed with a veto-proof majority in January.

 

Will Keystone Make A Difference?

The Wall Street Journal (not linked–the article is subscribers only) posted an editorial in its weekend edition about President Obama’s recent remarks about the Keystone XL Pipeline.

When asked about the pipeline, President Obama responded, “Understand what this project is: It is providing the ability of Canada to pump their oil, send it through our land, down to the Gulf, where it will be sold everywhere else. It doesn’t have an impact on U.S. gas prices.”

Either the President is economically ignorant or he is attempting to take advantage of the lack of economic knowledge of the average American (the tactic used to sell ObamaCare).

The editorial at the Wall Street Journal points out:

Someone should tell the President that oil markets are global and adding to global supply might well reduce U.S. gas prices, other things being equal. A tutor could add that Keystone XL will also carry U.S. light oil from North Dakota‘s Bakken Shale. So even if he thinks that bilateral trade only helps Canada, he’s still wrong about Keystone.

…Mr. Obama routinely entreats Congress to spend taxpayer money on “infrastructure” to create jobs, yet he implies that the 1,179-mile Keystone infrastructure project won’t create jobs.

Chances are that President Obama will veto the bill that passed the House and Senate regarding the Keystone Pipeline. The only reason the Senate allowed the bill to be brought up was to help Senator Landrieu win re-election. I am not sure the bill would have been brought up if the Democrats were not sure the President would veto it. I doubt enough Democrats will actually support the bill to override that veto. It would be nice if they did. Keystone would be a wonderful way to boost the American economy without charging Americans more taxes.

 

Future Voting Demographics

Michael Barone posted an article at National Review today analyzing the various voting groups that make up the American electorate and the changes they are going through.

This is the House of Representatives map from the National Journal:

HouseofRepMapIn his article at the National Review, Michael Barone describes this map:

It looks almost entirely red, except for some pinpoints of blue in major metropolitan areas and a few blue blotches here and there — in Minnesota, northern New Mexico and Arizona, western New England, along the Pacific Coast.

Mr. Barone points out that the map is actually misleading–the population density in the blue areas is generally much greater than in the red areas.

The article at National Review explains:

But it (the map) does tell us something about the geographic and cultural isolation of the core groups of the Democratic party: gentry liberals and blacks.

These were the two groups gathered together when Barack Obama had the opportunity to draw the new lines of his state senate district after the 2000 census. He combined the heavily black South Side of Chicago with Gold Coast gentry liberals north of the Loop.

Together, they provided him with an overwhelmingly Democratic voter base and with access to the upper financial and intellectual reaches of the Democratic party — and, in short time, the presidency of the United States.

The article at National Review explains that the number of black voters in 2014 was only slightly down from 2012–from 13 percent of voters to 12 percent of voters (that is not unusual in a mid-term election). However, blacks are not a growing segment of the voting population, and Democrats will probably never again win the 91 percent of the black vote they won in 2008.

The percentage of Hispanic voters is rising, but they are not guaranteed Democrat voters–some of the key issues of the Democrats have alienated the Hispanic vote–abortion, gun control, and opposition to fracking. So the Democrats cannot automatically count on those votes in the future (this might explain the Democrats focus on legalizing illegal aliens).

The article at National Review concludes:

Analysts who separate Americans into two tidy categories — white and non-white — assume that the non-white category will grow and that whites can’t vote any more Republican than they have historically. Presto, a Democratic America.

The first assumption is well founded. But Hispanics and Asians are not replicating blacks’ voting behavior, just as they haven’t shared their unique historic heritage. In some states, they’re voting more like whites than like blacks.

The second assumption may not be true at all. History shows that self-conscious minorities tend to vote cohesively, as blacks have for 150 years and southern whites did for 90. It’s an understandable response to feeling outnumbered and faced with an unappealing agenda.

In that case, Romney’s 59 percent or House Republicans’ 60 percent among whites may turn out to be more a floor than a ceiling. And that map may become increasingly familiar.

2016 will be an interesting year–the Presidential campaign has already begun. Who should we watch? On the Democrat side, keep your eye on Elizabeth Warren. On the Republican side, keep your eye on the governors–Scott Walker, Bobby Jindal, John Thune, and the Senators, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Rob Portman.

Sometimes I Hate Politics

The Keystone Pipeline is something that will help energy independence in America, boost the American economy, and provide jobs for Americans. In 2012, the Pipeline was blocked in the Senate because the Republicans could not break the Democrat filibuster. President Obama has been running interference to prevent approval of the Pipeline since he took office. But now things have changed.

Fox News posted an article today about Congress’ latest moves regarding the Keystone Pipeline. It will be interesting to see if the Pipeline gets approved this time. The possibility of approval has nothing to do with the American economy, jobs, or energy independence. It has to do with the runoff election to be held in Louisiana next month involving Democrat Senator Mary Landrieu.

The article reports:

White House spokesman Josh Earnest, traveling with President Obama in Burma, told reporters that the president takes a “dim view” of legislative efforts to force action on the project. Earnest stopped short of threatening a veto, but reiterated Obama’s preference for evaluating the pipeline through a long-stalled State Department review. Obama has repeatedly ordered such reviews under pressure from environmental groups, who say the project would contribute to climate change. 

Landrieu, who is thought to be trailing Cassidy ahead of their Dec. 6 runoff election, wants to deliver a win for the energy industry by pushing Keystone. The measure was one she co-sponsored with Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., back in May. 

“We can pass the Keystone pipeline and answer the frustrations of the American people,” she said. “So they could rest next and say, oh my gosh the senators of the United States of America have ears and they have brains and they have hearts and they heard what we said and we can do this.” 

The irony here is that Tom Steyer, a rather extreme environmentalist, pledged to contribute $100 million to anti-Keystone Democrats during the mid-term election. The Democrats took the money. How soon they forget.

The ideal outcome for the Democrats in this situation would be for the bill to be filibustered again. That way Senator Landrieu could say she tried,  the environmentalists who oppose the pipeline would still be happy because the bill failed, and Warren Buffett, whose company Berkshire Hathaway owns the railroad transporting the oil because there is no pipeline (see rightwinggranny), would still be making money with his railroad. The only people who would lose are Americans who want energy independence, the American economy, and people who want jobs. But if the Democrats win the runoff, they won’t worry about such trivial things.

In North Carolina, People Voted

Yesterday Paul Mirengoff at Power Line posted an article about the mid-term voting in North Carolina. Some of the pundits on the American left have blamed the Republican victory on the “disfranchisement” of likely Democratic voters.” The actual numbers tell a different story.

The article reports:

Francis Barry of Bloomberg, having looked more closely than Weiser at the numbers, concludes that North Carolina’s voting law changes did not determine the outcome of the Senate race. He notes that even with seven fewer early voting days, early voting in North Carolina increased this year by 35 percent compared with the 2010 midterm.

Moreover, statewide turnout as a whole increased from the previous midterm election, from 43.7 percent to 44.1 percent. And the share of the Black vote as a percentage of the total increased from its 2010 level.

We will be hearing more about discrimination against black voters as 2016 approaches and the left tries to undo voter identification laws. However, the numbers prove that making changes to improve the cost, integrity, and efficiency of elections does not lower voter turnout. I would also like to note that almost half of the people in North Carolina voted in a midterm election. They wanted to make their voices heard. That is a good thing.

Where Are The Young Leaders In The Democrat Party?

Dan Balz posted an article at the Washington Post on Saturday about the lack of young leaders in today’s Democrat party. In the last two mid-term elections, many of the younger Democrats who would have been future leaders of the party have been defeated by their Republican opponents.

The article reports:

The more serious problem for Democrats is the drubbing they’ve taken in the states, the breeding ground for future national talent and for policy experimentation. Republicans have unified control — the governorship and the legislature — in 23 states, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Democrats control just seven. Democrats hold 18 governorships, but only a handful are in the most populous states.

In California, Gov. Jerry Brown won again at age 76, his fourth, non-consecutive term in the governor’s office. His victory means that younger Democrats will have to wait until 2018 to compete for one of the nation’s most high-profile political jobs. In New York, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo won a second term, but can’t get out of Clinton’s shadow. The only other state among the top 10 in population held by the Democrats is Pennsylvania, newly won by Tom Wolf.

One of the largest groups of active voters in the country is senior citizens. However, I don’t think there are enough of them to continue electing aging Democrats to office. One of the problems in the recent mid-term was that the youth vote has been disillusioned with the Obama Administration and either did not turn out to vote in large numbers or did not vote for Democrats. The Republican party was known for a while as the party of white-haired old people, but that image is changing, and the Democrats are rapidly earning that label.

The article concludes:

But a political party cannot be constructed around two individuals (Obama and Clinton), as Democrats seem to be today. Winning the presidency and taking back the Senate will be the Democrats’ top priorities in the next two years. The bigger challenge of rebuilding the party in the states and nurturing a new generation of leaders should be just as urgent.

The author mentions Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren as someone he does not think will run for president. I am not convinced of that. I believe Senator Warren will challenge Hillary for the nomination from the left. Senator Warren made a number of visits in support of candidates who were running in the mid-terms and will have favors to call in during the next presidential campaign.

I believe the 2016 presidential campaign on both sides will be very interesting. I also believe that it is also well underway.

Being Force-fed Spin

Every now and then a person involved in policy making makes a mistake and tells the truth. Admittedly, creating and passing legislation can be messy, but that mess should be subject to scrutiny by the American people who vote for our legislators.

Yesterday the Daily Caller posted an article about some of the things that were involved in the passage of ObamaCare. As I am sure you remember, ObamaCare was passed through the reconciliation process rather than the normal Parliamentary Procedure. Also, not one Republican voted for it.

The Daily Caller reports a statement from the man who designed it, Jonathan Gruber:

“This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. Okay, so it’s written to do that.  In terms of risk rated subsidies, if you had a law which said that healthy people are going to pay in – you made explicit healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it would not have passed… Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really really critical for the thing to pass… Look, I wish Mark was right that we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not.”

This is the YouTube video of his remarks:

This is an example of a party with a political agenda taking advantage of the lack of involvement of the American people in the political process in America. If we are to keep the republic we were given by our Founding Fathers, we need to wake up and start paying attention. Otherwise, we will become the world’s next banana republic.

 

Out Of The Woodwork They Come

WRAL.com reported yesterday that North Carolina NAACP President Rev. William Barber has stated that Republican state House Speaker Thom Tillis was elected to the U.S. Senate on Tuesday not because North Carolinians support his policies but because of changes to state voting laws that affected who cast ballots.

Well, not so fast.  WAVY.com reported on November 5:

Unofficial results from the State Board of Elections on Wednesday show more than 2.9 million people cast ballots through early and absentee voting and on Election Day. The number exceeds the 2.7 million who voted in the last midterm in 2010.

This year’s total represents 44 percent turnout when compared with the registered population of 6.6 million people. That’s the same percentage as 2010. It falls short of the recent record of 62 percent in 1990.

This year’s ballot tally should increase slightly as absentee and provisional ballots are inspected.

Reverend Barber, just because you say it does not make it true.

The article at WRAL also reports:

Barber said there were widespread reports of voting problems – the State Board of Elections said the election ran rather smoothly – and the shortened early-voting period and the elimination of same-day registration affected thousands of North Carolina voters.

 Again, Reverend Barber, please get your facts right. Just for the record, the early-voting period was shortened, but the number of hours for early voting did not change.

According to Poor Richard’s News:

Comparing May 4, 2010 North Carolina primary election data with the May 14, 2014 primary data, the study found that voter turnout increased across the board, but particularly among black voters, where it increased by 29.5 percent, compared to an increase of white voter turnout of 13.7 percent. The findings were based on Census Bureau data and public names who signed the voter rolls.

The problem with same-day registration is that it gives the city or town involved no opportunity to confirm the address and information of the voter and thus opens the door for voter fraud. If the Reverend Barber is in favor of voter fraud, then he should support same-day registration. If he is in favor of honest elections, he should not.

Who Is Setting Up The Voting Machines?

Last Wednesday I posted an article (rightwinggranny.com) about voting machines in Schaumburg, Illinois, registering a Republican vote as a Democrat vote. That story was based on a Fox News story. Yesterday the Examiner posted a story about voting machines in Maryland that are refusing to let voters vote for Republican candidates.

The article reports:

“When I first selected my candidate on the electronic machine, it would not put the ‘x’ on the candidate I chose — a Republican — but it would put the ‘x’ on the Democrat candidate above it,” reported Donna Hamilton.

“This happened multiple times with multiple selections. Every time my choice flipped from Republican to Democrat. Sometimes it required four or five tries to get the ‘x’ to stay on my real selection,” the Frederick, Md., resident said Thursday.

…two voters in Anne Arundel County experienced the same problem: A touchscreen voting machine switched their Republican votes to Democrats. The voters had to cancel theirs votes and start over.

Joe Torre, election director in Anne Arundel, called it a “calibration issue” involving a single machine.

Hamilton said she notified officials of the problem she encountered at the Frederick County Center, where she voted. “I’m not sure what was done about it. If someone is not paying close attention, they could end up voting for the wrong candidate,” she said.

No kidding. This is not a Republican or Democrat issue–this is an honest elections issue. Both parties need to make sure voting machines are calibrated correctly so that votes get counted correctly. As Americans, we need to be able to trust the integrity of our elections.

Is American Free Speech In Danger?

The Daily Caller posted an article today about a letter written by FEC Vice Chair Ann Ravel about her plans to deal with the issue of internet political advertising. The concern is that her plans will severely limit political speech of any kind on the internet.

The internet has made a significant difference in the political climate in America. People who do not trust the mainstream media have a place they can go to investigate news stories on their own. Since many of the internet news sites lean conservative, there are those in the Democrat party who consider this a threat. The significance of the internet in the political dialogue in America is almost on the level of the significance that talk radio has been in recent years.

The article reports:

The Republican members of the commission cited a 2006 ruling which provided a so-called “Internet exemption” which allows for the publication of free political web videos.

But according to her letter, Ravel, an Obama appointee, hopes to change that.

“A re-examination of the Commission’s approach to the Internet and other emerging technologies is long overdue,” she wrote, adding that “the Commission has not adapted with” a changing world.

Warning against “turning a blind eye to the Internet’s growing force in the political arena,” Ravel said that “this effort to protect individual bloggers and online commentators” has been “stretched to cover slickly-produced ads solely on the Internet.”

The fact that FEC Vice Chair Ann Ravel has written this letter tells us that the Democrats are concerned about the growth of the new media. The new media is doing the job that the traditional media used to do. Hopefully, the FEC will not be successful in shutting down free speech.

Voters, Beware, Things May Not Be What They Seem

Fox News is reporting today about a very unsettling early voter mishap. Early voting has already begun in Illinois, and on Monday Republican state representative candidate Jim Moynihan went to cast his vote in the Schaumburg Public Library. When he attempted to vote for himself, the machine cast a vote for his opponent.

The article reports:

The conservative website Illinois Review reported that “While using a touch screen voting machine in Schaumburg, Moynihan voted for several races on the ballot, only to find that whenever he voted for a Republican candidate, the machine registered the vote for a Democrat in the same race. He notified the election judge at his polling place and demonstrated that it continued to cast a vote for the opposing candidate’s party. Moynihan was eventually allowed to vote for Republican candidates, including his own race.

Moynihan offered this gracious lesson to his followers on Twitter: “Be careful when you vote in Illinois. Make sure you take the time to check your votes before submitting.”

Cook County Board of Elections Deputy Communications Director Jim Scalzitti, told Illinois Watchdog, the machine was taken out of service and tested.

“This was a calibration error of the touch-screen on the machine,” Scalzitti said. “When Mr. Moynihan used the touch-screen, it improperly assigned his votes due to improper calibration.”

I hate to be cynical, but I really do wonder if that is the only machine in Illinois that has a calibration error. This makes me very concerned about voting in America. I am ready to go back to paper and pencil if that’s what it takes to have an honest election. The fact that this happened in Cook County makes me even more suspicious.

Another Example Of The Need For Voter Identification Laws

The Corner at National Review is reporting today that The New Georgia Project, currently under investigation for “significant illegal activities” regarding voter registration in Georgia began handing over subpoenaed documents on Friday. The group claims that it has reached an agreement to limit the scope of the documents it’s required to turn over. However, Georgia secretary of state Brian Kemp, who began this investigation earlier this month, has no knowledge of any deal to limit the scope of the documents to be handed over.

The article reports:

Georgia secretary of state Brian Kemp launched the investigation of the New Georgia Project earlier this month after receiving “numerous” complaints regarding applications submitted by the group, including forged signatures and applications. The investigation has turned up 33 fraudulent applications thus far, ahead of the thousands of pages of documents set to be turned over. The group is run by a close ally and campaign confidante of Democratic Senate candidate Michelle Nunn, state-house minority leader Stacy Abrams.

Do you ever wonder why most Democrats oppose voter identification?

Facts Versus Spin

We have all heard the whining and moaning about the Supreme Court decision on Hobby Lobby. Some of the media has painted a picture of Hobby Lobby that makes you wonder why anyone would work there. As usual, the picture the media has painted has little to do with the reality of the situation.

On Monday, The Corner at National Review posted an article citing actual facts about Hobby Lobby and the benefits it provides for its employees.

The article includes some of the comments the political left has made about the decision:

“This is going to turn the dial back,” Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz warned on MSNBC. The Democratic party’s national chairwoman added: “Republicans want to do everything they can to have the long hand of government, and now the long hand of business, reach into a woman’s body and make health care decisions for her.”

“Today’s Supreme Court decision unfortunately jeopardizes basic healthcare coverage and access to contraception for a countless number of women,” said Democratic senator Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire.

Consequently, Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid said that his party now must “fight to preserve women’s access to contraceptive coverage.”

The article also includes some facts about Hobby Lobby:

Imagine that a woman starts work at Hobby Lobby tomorrow morning — July 1. She joins Hobby Lobby’s health care plan. It includes access, copay-free, to the following categories of FDA-approved birth-control:

  1. Male condoms
  2. Female condoms
  3. Diaphragms with spermicide
  4. Sponges with spermicide
  5. Cervical caps with spermicide
  6. Spermicide alone
  7. Birth-control pills with estrogen and progestin (“Combined Pill)
  8. Birth-control pills with progestin alone (“The Mini Pill)
  9. Birth control pills (extended/continuous use)
  10. Contraceptive patches
  11. Contraceptive rings
  12. Progestin injections
  13. Implantable rods
  14. Vasectomies
  15. Female sterilization surgeries
  16. Female sterilization implants

That really doesn’t sound like she is being denied healthcare. The article reminds us that Hobby Lobby offers medical coverage for 16 different kinds of birth control for its employees. The legal case was to exclude four methods that are seen to cause abortions. Again, there is no ban on employees using these four methods, but Hobby Lobby will not pay for them.

The article concludes:

Those who are screaming themselves hoarse after the Hobby Lobby decision would agree that Yeshiva need not serve unkosher food, and PETA need not include calf meat on its menu. Yes, somehow, Hobby Lobby is evil because it pays for 16 kinds of contraceptives, and expects its employees themselves to purchase four others that might kill human babies.

At its core, the Left’s moaning over Hobby Lobby is less about access to medicine and more about access to free stuff. 

I disagree with the writer’s conclusion. This is not about free stuff. It’s about convincing the low-information voter that there is a ‘war on women’ in conservative politics and that they need to vote for Democrat candidates. There are very few Americans who will do their homework and get the facts on this case–most will rely on news that quotes the type of statement quoted in the beginning of this article as fact. Would it be fair to say that Democrats regard women’s healthcare as the right to kill babies and that right must be protected?

Incumbency Over Ethics

National Review Online posted a story today about Mitzi Bickers, who played a major role in Thad Cochran’s primary victory in Mississippi. Ms. Bickers is a Democratic staffer and political strategist. Last year, she left her job as a senior adviser to Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed after news surfaced that she had filed a fraudulent financial-disclosure statement.

The article reports:

In a bizarre turn of events, it seems that Bickers was in the middle of a bitterly contested Republican Senate primary. Two Atlanta-based entities affiliated with Bickers, The Bickers Group and the Pirouette Company, were paid thousands of dollars to make robo-calls on Senator Cochran’s behalf by a super PAC that backed Cochran in his bid for reelection. Documents filed with the Federal Election Commission show that Mississippi Conservatives, the political-action committee run by former Mississippi governor Haley Barbour’s nephew Henry, paid the groups a total of $44,000 for get-out-the-vote “phone services.”

It is becoming very clear that some Republicans are as opposed to the Tea Party as the Democrats are. Why? Because some of the Republican establishment has morphed into a Democrat Light party and has lost its way. The Republican establishment no longer adheres to the principle of smaller government and individual freedom. They have joined the Democrats in supporting the status quo and consolidating power in Washington.

The Republican Party needs to get back to its roots and its platform if it intends to be a political force in the future.

Dr. Greg Brannon Spoke In New Bern Tonight

Dr. Greg Brannon spoke to the Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association (CCTA) in New Bern, North Carolina, tonight. Dr. Brannon spoke about the grass roots constitutional conservative movement. He pointed out that both the Republican and the Democrat parties have drifted away from the U.S. Constitution. He reminded us that our Constitution is based on God’s law, Natural Law, and that the Constitution states that our rights are given to us by the Creator–not the government.

Dr. Brannon reminded us that the legitimate role of government is to protect the individual’s inalienable rights. The moment a government oversteps its bounds, it is no longer legitimate. Our Constitution is designed to chain the government–not the individual.

Dr. Brannon stated that the solution to the problem of a government that has overstepped its bounds is the individual. In the last primary election in North Carolina, only 15 percent of eligible voters voted. The role of the grass roots constitutional conservative movement is to reach the 85 percent that did not vote with the message of constitutional conservatism. That is how the country can be brought back to its roots and the boundaries of the Constitution.

There was a spirited question and answer period following Dr. Brannon’s remarks. Those in attendance were challenged to ignore party labels and vote according to Constitutional principles.

The monthly meetings of the CCTA are open to the public. They deal with issues that impact all of us. The next meeting will be held on July 15th. Details of upcoming programs are posted on their website.

 

 

American Voters Have More Common Sense Than Some Of Their Elected Officials

Hot Air posted a story today about voter identification laws in America. A Fox News poll released this week stated that 70 percent of American voters favor voter identification.

The article cites some results of the poll:

Seven in 10 registered voters are in favor of identification laws in order to root out fraud at the ballot box, according to a Fox News poll released this week.

The survey found majority support in every major demographic, including black voters and Democrats.

The 70 percent who support voter ID laws remains largely unchanged in the past few years. Another 27 percent believe the laws are unnecessary…

The survey found majorities of every demographic support the law. Ninety-one percent of Republicans offer support, and 66 percent of independents feel the same.

Fifty-five percent of Democrats support the laws, while 43 percent oppose them.

Opposition to the laws is highest among black respondents, but even there a bare majority, 51 percent, support them. Forty-six percent of African Americans oppose the laws.

Voter fraud impacts every voter. If you are an American citizen registered to vote, a fraudulent vote can easily cancel out your vote and rob you of the privilege of voting. Voter fraud benefits no one. Voter identification laws are one weapon against voter fraud. Rather than ‘infringing on your right to vote’ as many left-leaning politicians claim, voter identification laws protect your vote if you are voting legally.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Something To Consider

Be forewarned–this is going to be a controversial article, but it is definitely something to think about.

In 1965, President Lyndon Johnson declared war on poverty. A website called The Bunker quotes off the record remarks he made at the time:

”These Negroes, they‘re getting pretty uppity these days and that‘s a problem for us since they‘ve got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we‘ve got to do something about this, we‘ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.” ~Lyndon B. Johnson (Democrat)

President Lyndon Baines Johnson, And is “Great Society” to help the Negro… was recorded on a White House taped (and saved) conversation claiming, “I’ll have them niggers voting Democratic for the next two hundred years.”

In a January 2011 article in the Wall Street Journal, Walter Williams stated:

Even in the antebellum era, when slaves often weren’t permitted to wed, most black children lived with a biological mother and father. During Reconstruction and up until the 1940s, 75% to 85% of black children lived in two-parent families. Today, more than 70% of black children are born to single women. “The welfare state has done to black Americans what slavery couldn’t do, what Jim Crow couldn’t do, what the harshest racism couldn’t do,” Mr. Williams says. “And that is to destroy the black family.”

Cliven Bundy recently stated (as reported by CNN):

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” Bundy said, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids – and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch – they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” Bundy continued. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

Mr. Bundy has been accused of racism on the basis of that statement. My question is simple, “Is that statement racist, or is that statement honest?”

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

A Caution To Conservatives

William F. Buckley is said to have stated that Conservatives should ‘support the most viable conservative candidate.’ That’s a very important statement.

The exact quote:

“The wisest choice would be the one who would win. No sense running Mona Lisa in a beauty contest. I’d be for the most right, viable candidate who could win.”
-William F. Buckley Jr.

Right now there are two parties in Washington–the first is composed of the Democrats and the establishment Republicans, and the second is composed of the conservatives who have been elected since 2010. The 2014 mid-terms are important. They will determine whether the Democrats and establishment Republicans continue their tax and spend ways or if fiscal sanity makes an appearance.

Many Republican candidates who have been in office for a while are being challenged for the first time in primary campaigns by more conservative candidates. There is nothing wrong with the fact that establishment candidates are being challenged, but I have a word of caution.

In a world of instant news, cell phones that record and take pictures, twitter and facebook, candidates need to be more disciplined than they ever have been. Because the opposition is more than willing to take any comment out of context and twist words, candidates need to adhere to a specific group of lukewarm comments in order to get elected. I am not suggesting that candidates lie or misrepresent themselves, but I am saying that discipline on the part of the candidates will be crucial to this election.

Primary elections are important. You can judge a candidate by the way he runs his primary campaign–does he speak without thinking, does he make statements that cause him to have to  backtrack, is he respectful of the people who come out to hear him and eventually support him?

My advice to conservatives is simple–make sure your candidates are ready for prime time. Otherwise, you will be wasting money and time and accomplishing nothing.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Candidates Forum In New Bern

Last Night I attended the Candidate Forum at the Stanly Hall Ballroom in New Bern, North Carolina. The forum was sponsored by the Coastal Carolina Taxpayers Association. The candidates attending included Republicans and Democrats running for office at various levels of government including the U. S. Senate the U. S. House of Representatives, the North Carolina Senate, the North Carolina House of Representatives, and various other state and county offices. It was a very informative night, and I encourage you if you live in an area that does candidate forums, to attend one–they are worth attending. On May 6th North Carolina voters will go to the polls to vote in a primary election. Many of the candidates for office have primary challenges. Be an informed voter.

It would take forever to detail what each candidate said, so I am going to simply list general impressions of a few candidates who stood out.

Greg Brannon is impressive. His off-the-cuff knowledge of the U.S. Constitution is inspiring. He is definitely ready for prime time. His answers to questions were clear and concise, and there was nothing he had to backtrack on as the questions continued. It was also interesting to see that some of the other candidates deferred to him on Constitutional questions. There were a number of candidates who made statements during the question and answer period that they had to backtrack on. I suspect they will be working on this before the election.

I was also impressed by Norm Sanderson and Michael Speciale. Norm Sanderson is serving is freshman term in the North Carolina Senate, and Michael Speciale is serving his freshman term in the North Carolina House. Both men had clear ideas on what needs to be done in North Carolina and clear plans for instituting those ideas.

I was also impressed by George Liner, running for Craven County Board of Commissioners. When asked a question about the Craven County tall structures laws and how they would protect people and property values from a wind farm, he was already aware of the potential problems that would arise. He seemed well prepared to hold the office if he is elected.

All of the candidates had an opportunity to state their reasons for running and their positions on various subjects. It was a very informative evening. As a new resident of this area, I learned a lot at the forum. It was very helpful to me to see the candidates and hear what they considered the major issues facing the state and local communities.

Enhanced by Zemanta