Some Observations About Yesterday’s Election

Yesterday a number of states held primary elections. Political junkies were watching carefully for clues to the future. I have chosen three articles that I think best explain where we are. The first article was posted by Andrew Malcolm at Investor’s Business Daily. The second article was posted at The Hill. The third article is from The Federalist. Before I continue, I would like to add one caution–this is the silly season. Most of what you are going to hear in the next two weeks is not true. Be very careful what you believe.

Investor’s Business Daily points out:

The bottom line — or one of them — is that not much has changed. No one new dropped out, which helps Trump by keeping his opposition divided heading into the big Fox News debate in Detroit Thursday evening.

What we do know for sure now is that the GOP is split by deep fissures heading into peak primary season. Rubio and Cruz think the other should drop out.

Kasich, who’s been getting in the 4%-5% range, called on the others to quit and declared: “We have absolutely exceeded expectations.”

The governor is holding on to very little except the prayer that lightning will give him a victory back home in Ohio on March 15 and, who knows, maybe some VP consideration from Trump as a reward for denying Cruz and Rubio enough votes to catch the billionaire.

Trump had a good night, although he under-performed his polling heading into the biggest voting day of this cycle so far. That and Rubio’s late surge to second in Virginia could be a sign the Florida senator’s mocking attacks are having some impact.

Rubio declared Tuesday evening: “Donald Trump will never be the nominee of the Republican Party. We are not going to turn over the party of Lincoln and Reagan to a con man.” He called Trump “a creature of the media, the same media that’s going to tear him to shreds if he ever becomes our nominee.”

Does anyone remember Ronald Reagan’s 11th Commandment?

The article from The Hill points out that the precinct that includes Liberty University did not follow the lead of Jerry Falwell Jr., the school’s president, and vote for Donald Trump. The total’s from that precinct are as follows: Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) took first with 44 percent support in Liberty’s precinct and 513 votes, followed by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) at 33 percent, Ben Carson at 14 percent and Trump at 8 percent.

The article at The Federalist made a number of observations. The first observation is that Trump underperformed:

He lost Texas to Cruz, as expected. But he lost it bigly — some 17 points. He also lost Oklahoma to Cruz. And then Cruz went ahead and won Alaska to boot. Minnesota went for Marco Rubio, his first state victory. Trump also underperformed in other states, such as Virginia. The Real Clear Politics average of polls headed into the contest was near 15 points. He won by 2.8% over Rubio. That meant Trump got 17 delegates to Rubio’s 16. His wins in Vermont and Arkansas were by similarly small margins.

The difference between the Republican and Democratic voter turnout is dramatic:

These Tuesday contests continued a pattern of record-breaking turnout for Republican primary voters and decreased turnout for Democratic voters (Colorado saw more Democratic voters than they had in 2008). Only Vermont didn’t have record-breaking turnout for its Republican primary, and it was still way up over the last contest. Many of the states whose contests were held on Super Tuesday hold open primaries, which means traditionally Democratic voters could be crossing over to vote for Trump or another candidate. No matter the cause, the excitement of both Trump voters and those seeking to stop him is palpable and contributing to the voter turnout.

One wonders if this is Democrats crossing over because they feel Trump cannot beat Hillary Clinton or if it is enthusiastic Trump supporters. At this point I have no idea.

The article at The Federalist also states:

And while Cruz has previously shown much strength, many of the upcoming primaries are in states with demographics more like Minnesota than Texas or Oklahoma. Cruz and Rubio have shown strength in states with closed primaries, where Democrats can’t switch over to vote for Trump.

Trump is dominating and on path to the nomination. No one else has a good path, except if they all keep fighting to keep Trump from getting the delegates he needs. Expect much more discussion about whether people need to get out or stay in.

The question for those who would like to see a Republican president elected in November is simple, “Will the Democrats who are voting for Trump in the primary elections vote for him in November?” I honestly do not know the answer to that question, but I suggest that the people running the Republican presidential campaigns find that answer quickly.

 

 

Some Things To Consider

This is my statement on the current state of affairs in the Republican primary.

I don’t support Donald Trump. I understand the anger of Trump supporters, and I share that anger. I just don’t think Donald Trump is the solution to our current problems. Emotionally, I just don’t like the man. His arrogance and mannerisms are in the same league as Barack Obama’s, and I don’t want to watch another four years of someone who thinks I am too stupid to see what is happening around me. I also haven’t heard any concrete ideas from Donald Trump about how he wants to accomplish what needs to be accomplished. Those ideas may be there, but they are not at the forefront.

I don’t support Marco Rubio because I don’t trust his wisdom. He is too naive.

Breitbart.com reported on February 26th:

He’s often seen by some voters as not serious, as immature, as a little bit naive,” Conway said on Breitbart News Daily Friday. “You see him at that Gang of Eight podium — and you see Chuck Schumer… You see Chuck Schumer off to his left. You can almost see the saliva coming out of Chuck Schumer’s mouth, because he’s like, ‘We got this guy! This guy will never be president now. We’ve got him dead-to-rights. He is molding, leading, authoring, and shepherding through this amnesty bill that his base will never accept.’ Chuck Schumer knew that. And Marco Rubio didn’t.”

On February 25th Breitbart.com reported:

Ken Palinkas—who served as the President of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Council during the Gang of Eight fight and is now a local chapter president for USCIS officers—weighed in on the fight between America’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers and Sen. Rubio.

In an exclusive interview with Breitbart News, Palinkas detailed the dangers a Rubio Administration would pose to national security and U.S. sovereignty—perhaps adding more trouble to an already embattled Rubio campaign.

“He’s the wolf in sheep’s clothing,” Palinkas told Breitbart—explaining that Rubio would “absolutely” represent President Obama’s third term on immigration.

As I said, the purpose of this article is to give readers some things to consider.

I do support Ted Cruz. Here are my reasons:

I think he is the smartest and most principled candidate running. Neither of these traits will ever win a popularity contest (and both traits tend to be disliked by those who do not have them), but I believe they are important traits in a presidential candidate.

Ted Cruz has already proven that he will defend the U.S. Constitution. He respects the Constitution and plans on upholding it. I am not sure Donald Trump understands that as President, he would represent one of three branches of government. Donald Trump does not do well as one of three.

Ted Cruz has already stood up for the values that are important to me. It is up to the voters to decide if those values are important to them. He has pledged to defund and investigate Planned Parenthood, stop the Iranian nuclear deal, end Common Core and defend the Second Amendment. That works for me.

If you are reading this, your vote counts as much as mine. I hope you will consider what I have said. Just vote.

 

Yesterday In South Carolina

Yesterday Donald Trump won the primary election in South Carolina. These are the numbers (from Townhall.com):

SouthCarolinaPrimaryElectionAfter the primary, Jeb Bush suspended his campaign, so there are essentially five candidates remaining–the top three are Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, and Ted Cruz. So what can we conclude from this? The only Republican establishment candidate left is March Rubio. He is not the Republican establishment’s first choice, but he is the only remaining establishment candidate. The only true conservative in the race is Ted Cruz. We can expect to see more vicious attacks against him in the coming weeks both from the media and the Republican establishment.

This is the current delegate count in each party:

DelegateCountFebruary21*Party leaders who are free to support any candidate.

This is the beginning. If you truly want America to move in a positive direction in the future, I believe that Ted Cruz is your candidate. Be ready for the Democrats, the media, and the Republican establishment to go after Ted Cruz in a noticeable way. He is the candidate that is truly a threat to the status quo.

Why Is The Pope Getting Involved In An American Presidential Race?

The headline today is that the Pope says that Donald Trump is ‘not a Christian.’ Big Whoop. Are Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Barack Obama, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz Christians? Is it possible to be a Christian and support abortion? Is it possible to be a Christian and demand that the Little Sisters of the Poor pay for contraception that includes abortion-inducing pills? Is it Christian to oppose Israel every step of the way and not defend them when they are attacked? Is it Christian to sit in Jeremiah Wright‘s church and hear racist shouting week after week? Who knows if Donald Trump is or is not a Christian? If he says he is, we need to take him at his word. We also need to evaluate his actions in light of what he says.

Sean Hannity posted what is essentially the essence of the story:

Specifically, the pontiff takes issue with Donald’s plan to build a border wall with Mexico. When asked about Trump, the Pope was quoted by The New York Times saying:

A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not of building bridges, is not Christian. This is not the Gospel. As far as what you said about whether I would advise to vote or not to vote, I am not getting involved in that. I say only this man is not Christian if he has said things like that.

Just for the record, this is a picture of the Vatican posted by a friend on Facebook:

PopeAndDonaldTrumpPeople who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

 

Why I Think The Republican Debate Is A Joke

I am watching the Republican debate. This is a collaboration between the Republican establishment and the media to make sure a non-establishment candidate does not win the Republican nomination. The media would like Hillary Clinton to win the presidency, but a lot of Americans are not necessarily following the media in this plan.

Note that Carly Fiorina is not on the stage and the John Kasich is. The only voting that has taken place in this election cycle has been in Iowa, where Carly Fiorina got more votes than John Kasich. Since that number represents actual votes, rather than inaccurate polls, I believe the people on the stage tonight were not chosen fairly. The establishment candidate is on the stage; the non-establishment candidate is not. Admittedly, the difference in the number of votes is small, but the fact remains that Carly Fiorina got more votes than John Kasich.

To add insult to injury, Breitbart.com has posted an article today about one of the moderators of the Republican debate. Martha Raddatz is married to a Harvard Law School classmate of Barack Obama. President Obama attended her wedding. President Obama appointed Julius Genachowski (Ms. Raddatz’s husband) to head the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).  Ms. Raddatz is one of the moderators of the Republican debate. Does anyone actually believe that she will be an unbiased moderator?

The Republican Party needs to choose the moderators for the Republican debates. These moderators need to be people who do not have strong ties to the Democratic Party. What is happening now on ABC is an attempt to use the Republican Presidential candidates to ensure a Democratic victory in the Presidential election in November.

Can We Please Move On To Other Things

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported that the Illinois Board of Elections has ruled that Ted Cruz is a “natural born citizen” of America.

The article reports:

The Candidate is a natural born citizen by virtue of being born in Canada to his mother who was a U.S. citizen at the time of his birth,” the board stated, saying that Cruz “did not have to take any steps or go through a naturalization process at some point after birth,” adding, “Further discussion on this issue is unnecessary.”

That does make sense (although legal decisions do not always make sense). Ted Cruz did not have to take steps to become an American citizen because he already was one. I also suspect his draft card, social security number, etc. actually reflect places he was living at that time. I also suspect that at some point we will have access to his college records. Now, can we please put this issue to rest?

The person who challenged Ted Cruz’s eligibility to run for President is also challenging Marco Rubio’s eligibility.

Surrendering Before The Battle Begins

The results of the Iowa Caucus are in. Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are essentially tied, and three Republicans are running neck and neck. The obvious lesson from the caucus is that Iowa voters do not support the establishment candidates of either party. Bernie Sanders is not an establishment candidate and received about half of the Democratic votes. Ted Cruz and Donald Trump are the non-establishment  Republican candidates, and together they received slightly more than half of the Republican votes. The message being sent by the voters seems rather obvious–we don’t want more of the same.

Today The Hill posted a story that might indicated that the Washington establishment may not have received the message the Iowa voters have sent.

The article reports:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), seeking to protect his majority in a tough cycle for Republicans, is leaning toward holding back several measures that have bipartisan support but are divisive in his conference.

McConnell, who will meet in the Oval Office on Tuesday with President Obama and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), is under pressure from some in his conference to take action this year on a sweeping Pacific Rim trade deal, criminal justice reform legislation and an authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Others in McConnell’s conference are not keen to tackle any of those issues, however, and Senate GOP sources say McConnell is likely to take the safe route and not advance any bills that divide his ­conference.

“McConnell is smart to wait on issues that divide us until such time as we can achieve a consensus,” said a senior Republican aide. “There’s no question that some members want to turn to some things sooner than others. But McConnell’s duty is to do what’s best for the entire conference. Seems what’s best for the conference is to focus on the things that unite us.”

Essentially, Leader McConnell is saying that he isn’t going to lead. He doesn’t want to rock the boat. If the voters did not want to rock the vote, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz would not have been the top two winners in Iowa last night. Remember when the Senate refused to join Ted Cruz in fighting ObamaCare? There were convinced that if they did not cave, the world would end. Ted Cruz was told that he had ruined the Republican name. Somehow, I think that observation has been proven to be false.

The Republicans need a backbone. Given the chance, the voters will elect those candidates that exhibit a backbone. Those who do not have a backbone can expect to have their political fortunes changed at the first opportunity. Regardless of how you feel about him, Donald Trump has energized those voters who want the Washington establishment and the media that supports it to go away. A victory in the Republican primaries for either Ted Cruz or Donald Trump will be a step in that direction.

During the coming weeks, watch for a major attack on both Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. Those are the two candidates in the Republican party that are most threatening to the status quo that includes both the Washington establishment and the dominant media.

Also note that one of the leading contenders in the Democratic primary is an avowed Democratic Socialist. I am not even sure what that actually means. It is, however, an indication that Democrats are also unhappy with the status quo.

The North Carolina Establishment Republicans Are Not Behaving Well

One of the best sources for information about the battle between the conservative and establishment Republicans in North Carolina is the Daily Haymaker. They have posted two stories recently about that battle (here and here). The latter story illustrates how the GOP establishment has carried its battle into South Carolina.

Rush Limbaugh explained this on his program today:

I have an incredible story here last night — and, by the way, just to give you a little bit of inside data, if you watched the debate last night, did you hear a lot of boos for Trump? (interruption) Did you wonder about that? (interruption) Well, you knew where it was coming? (interruption) Where was it coming from? (interruption) Where do you…? (interruption) No. (interruption) No. (interruption) It might have been the Bush camp, but I’ll tell you where the boo birds were coming from.  They were coming from North Carolina. 

The North Carolina GOP bused a bunch of people down there and their express purpose was to try to show that there is no massive support for Trump.  They wanted to do some damage.  They are grudgingly accepting Ted Cruz now.  But can you go back just maybe three, four weeks? How many of you remember the Republican establishment embracing Ted Cruz, promoting Ted Cruz, thinking Ted Cruz would be the solution? I mean, it didn’t happen, did it?  But it has worked out that way. 

The only way to stop this sort of garbage is for Americans to begin to do their own research about the candidates and get out and vote their consciences. As I have explained before, I am not a supporter of Donald Trump, but I hate the fact that the establishment Republicans want to run another moderate for President. The lessons of history show that moderate Republicans do not win presidential elections.

Some Thoughts On The Republican Debate

Late last night The Weekly Standard posted an article about the Republican Debate last night. The debate on CNBC was a tutorial on media bias. The questions were ridiculous, and the candidates called out the moderators on the silliness.

The article reports:

The three winners of the night were pretty obvious: Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, and Donald Trump.

Rubio ended Jeb Bush’s campaign with the kind of body shot that buckles your knees. That’s on Bush, who never should have come after Rubio in that spot for a host of strategic and tactical reasons. But what should scare Hillary Clinton is how effortless Rubio is even with throwaway lines, like “I’m against anything that’s bad for my mother.” Most people have no idea how fearsome raw political talent can be. Clinton does know because she’s seen it up close. She sleeps next to it for a contractually-obligated 18 nights per year.

Cruz was tough and canny—no surprise there. He went the full-Gingrich in his assault on CNBC’s ridiculous moderators. He did a better job explaining Social Security reform than Chris Christie, even (which is no mean feat). And managed to look downright personable compared with John Harwood, whose incompetence was matched only by his unpleasantness. If you’re a conservative voter looking for someone who is going to fight for your values, Cruz must have looked awfully attractive.

Then there was Trump. Over the last few weeks, Trump has gotten better on the stump. Well, don’t look now, but he’s getting better at debates, too. Trump was reasonably disciplined. He kept his agro to a medium-high level. And his situational awareness is getting keener, too. Note how he backed John Kasich into such a bad corner on Lehman Brothers that he protested, “I was a banker, and I was proud of it!” When that’s your answer, you’ve lost the exchange. Even at a Republican debate.

And Trump had a hammer close: “Our country doesn’t win anymore. We used to win. We don’t anymore.” I remain convinced that this line (along with his hardliner on immigration) is the core of Trump’s appeal. But he didn’t just restate this theme in his closing argument. He used it to: (1) beat up CNBC; and (2) argue that his man-handling of these media twits is an example of what he’ll do as president. It was brilliant political theater.

I am not a Trump supporter, but I am supporter of the way he handles the press–he doesn’t back down. He’s not afraid of calling them out when they lie.

The article at The Weekly Standard regards the six candidates with an actual shot at winning the nomination as Trump, Carson, Rubio, Cruz, and possibly Fiorina and Christie. I think they are on to something. I will say that whoever wins the nomination will have some really smart potential cabinet members to choose from.

North Carolina Holds A Constitutional Caucus

PRESS RELEASE

NEW BERN LOCATION

North Carolina TEA Party Constitutional Caucus

TEA Party Constitutional Caucuses were held in 9 locations in North Carolina today, and the results are in. In the Presidential Caucus, a total of 789 votes were cast across the state. Ted Cruz was the clear winner with 391 votes. This means that Ted Cruz took 50.13% of the vote. Since there was no limit on how many presidential candidates that could be nominated (so long as each was seconded), this was an impressive showing.

Ben Carson got 328 votes, or 42.05%. Another impressive showing, but Ted Cruz was the clear winner with more than 50%.

Constitutional conservatives in North Carolina who so choose can vote for Ted Cruz in the primary knowing their votes are likely to align with those of other Constitutional conservatives.  They can thereby use the caucus results to counter the RNC’s “spliter” strategy designed to split the conservative vote and get Jeb Bush elected.

Donald Trump got 31 votes, Rand Paul received 18, and Carly Fiorina got 6. Marco Rubio received 4 votes, and Bobby Jindal, 2.

Ninety five people participated in the Caucus in the New Bern Location. Locally, Cruz got 41 votes, Carson got 39, Trump got 11, and Paul, 1. There were 3 people who abstained from voting.

After a brief break in each location, the speeches, caucus, and voting process resumed. This time, the conservative choice for U.S. Senator from North Carolina was sought.

Statewide, Larry Holmquist got 169 votes (58.28%). Dr. Greg Brannon got 106 votes (36.55%). U.S. Representative Mark Meadows got 13 votes (4.48%). Incumbent, Richard Burr, got 1 vote.

In the New Bern location, Greg Brannon received 29 votes, Mark Meadows got 13, and Larry Holmquist, 2. Anecdotally, there was much conversation during the caucus period questioning whether Greg Brannon can be talked into running, and whether it might not be better to keep Mark Meadows where he is for now.

Statewide results can be seen at www.teacaucus.org

 

The Media Is Going To Do This To All Republican Candidates–We Need To Learn How To Deal With It

By now we have all heard about the New York Times Story of Marco Rubio and his luxury speedboat. I found a picture of the boat at Yahoo:

Marco Rubio’s ‘Luxury’ Boat Can Fit In Hillary Clinton’s Pool

The New York Times called it an $80,000 speedboat. I am not a boat person, but somehow I find that rather hard to believe. If he paid $80,000 for this boat, we should not elect him for President simply because he is fiscally irresponsible. Somehow I doubt that is the case.

On the other hand, the media never seemed particularly interested in Secretary of State John Kerry‘s boat when he was running for office or when he was a Senator from Massachusetts. Below is a picture of the boat parked in Nantucket (not exactly the low-rent district):

JohnKerry3Just for the record, there is another twist on the John Kerry’s boat story. In July of 2010, the Huffington Post reported:

Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry is docking his family’s new $7 million yacht in neighboring Rhode Island, allowing him to avoid paying roughly $500,000 in taxes to the cash-strapped Bay State.

If the “Isabel” were kept at the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee’s summer vacation home on Nantucket, or in Boston Harbor near his city residence, he would be liable for $437,500 in one-time sales tax. He would also have to pay $70,000 in annual excise taxes.

Leave Marco Rubio alone–at least he is not avoiding taxes on a $7 million dollar yacht.

All voters need to understand that the media is not unbiased. They are going to try to destroy any candidate who looks like he (or she) might be a challenge to Hillary Clinton. We need to learn how to read between the lines and how to fight back. It would be nice if the media took the time and had the inclination to tell both sides of all stories about everyone’s campaign for President, but that is simply not the case. The solution is that voters have to know how to get past the media and do their own research.

The ACLU Gets It Right

John Hinderaker at Power Line posted an article yesterday about Congressional Democrat’s attempt to repeal the First Amendment. Part of this attempt would insure that incumbent politicians would be able to stay in office indefinitely–opponents would be prevented from raising the amount of money necessary to achieve the name recognition needed to be viable candidates. A hearing on the bill was held yesterday.

The article lists some of the details of the law, which is sponsored by Tom Udall:

Congress shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in-kind equivalents with respect to Federal elections, including through setting limits on—

(1) the amount of contributions to candidates for nomination for election to, or for election to, Federal office; and

(2) the amount of funds that may be spent by, in support of, or in opposition to such candidates. …

Nothing in this article shall be construed to grant Congress the power to abridge the freedom of the press.

States would also be given similar powers.

Here are a few quotes from the ACLU‘s letter to Congress opposing the bill:

To give just a few hypotheticals of what would be possible in a world where the Udall proposal is the 28th Amendment:

    • Congress would be allowed to restrict the publication of Secretary Hillary Clinton’s forthcoming memoir “Hard Choices” were she to run for office;

    • Congress could criminalize a blog on the Huffington Post by Gene Karpinski, president of the League of Conservation Voters, that accuses Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) of being a “climate change denier”;

    • Congress could regulate this website by reform group Public Citizen, which urges voters to contact their members of Congress in support of a constitutional amendment addressing Citizens United and the recent McCutcheon case, under the theory that it is, in effect, a sham issue communication in favor of the Democratic Party;

    • A state election agency, run by a corrupt patronage appointee, could use state law to limit speech by anti-corruption groups supporting reform;

    • A local sheriff running for reelection and facing vociferous public criticism for draconian immigration policies and prisoner abuse could use state campaign finance laws to harass and prosecute his own detractors;

    • A district attorney running for reelection could selectively prosecute political opponents using state campaign finance restrictions; and

    • Congress could pass a law regulating this letter for noting that all 41 sponsors of this amendment, which the ACLU opposes, are Democrats (or independents who caucus with Democrats).

Such examples are not only plausible, they are endless.

This proposed law is one example of the reason term limits for politicians would be a really good idea. One of the major effects of this law would be to insure that incumbents would remain in office. It is an unfortunate fact of life that any limit on campaign donations gives an advantage to incumbent office holders–they have access to the press and can stage press events. Candidates running against them have a much more difficult time getting the attention of the press–therefore they are forced to spend money on campaign ads in order to be viable candidates.

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Standing For Something

Yesterday Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article about two contrasting speeches given in the Senate that tell a lot about politics in America. The first speech was given by Senator Tom Harkin, who recently returned from a trip to Cuba. Senator Harkin offered a rosy view of Cuba’s efforts on literacy and health care.  Senator Harkin made no mention of the oppression of the Cuban people or the poverty of the vast majority of Cuban people. Senator Marco Rubio, who parents were Cuban exiles, was not impressed.

Here are Senator Rubio’s remarks, quoted from the article at Hot Air:

A few moments ago, the body was treated to a report from the senator from Iowa about his recent trip to Cuba. Sounded like he had a wonderful trip visiting, what he described as, a real paradise. He bragged about a number of things that he learned on his trip to Cuba that I’d like to address briefly. He bragged about their health care system, medical school is free, doctors are free, clinics are free, their infant mortality rate may be even lower than ours. I wonder if the senator, however, was informed, number one, that the infant mortality rate of Cuba is completely calculated on figures provided by the Cuban government. And, by the way, totalitarian communist regimes don’t have the best history of accurately reporting things. I wonder if he was informed that before Castro, Cuba, by the way, was 13th in the whole world in infant mortality. I wonder if the government officials who hosted him, informed him that in Cuba there are instances reported, including by defectors, that if a child only lives a few hours after birth, they’re not counted as a person who ever lived and therefore don’t count against the mortality rate.

I wonder if our visitors to Cuba were informed that in Cuba, any time there is any sort of problem with the child in utero they are strongly encouraged to undergo abortions, and that’s why they have an abortion rate that skyrockets, and some say, is perhaps the highest the world. I heard him also talk about these great doctors that they have in Cuba. I have no doubt they’re very talented. I’ve met a bunch of them. You know where I met them? In the United States because they defected. Because in Cuba, doctors would rather drive a taxi cab or work in a hotel than be a doctor. I wonder if they spoke to him about the outbreak of cholera that they’ve been unable to control, or about the three-tiered system of health care that exists where foreigners and government officials get health care much better than that that’s available to the general population.

I also heard him speak about baseball and I know that Cubans love baseball, since my parents were from there and I grew up in a community surrounded by it. He talked about these great baseball players that are coming from Cuba — and they are. But I wonder if they informed him — in fact, I bet you they didn’t talk about those players to him because every single one of those guys playing in the Major Leagues defected. They left Cuba to play here.

He also talked about how people would come up to him in the streets and not a single person said anything negative about America. Nobody came up to him wagging their fingers saying, ‘You Americans and your embargo is hurting us.’ I’m glad to hear that. Because everyone who wants to lift the embargo is constantly telling us that the Castros use that to turn the people against us. So obviously, that’s not true. So I’m glad to hear confirmation of what I already knew to be true. I heard about their wonderful literacy rate, how everyone in Cuba knows how to read. That’s fantastic. Here’s the problem: they can only read censored stuff. They’re not allowed access to the Internet. The only newspapers they’re allowed to read are Granma or the ones produced by the government.

I wish that someone on that trip would have asked the average Cuban, ‘With your wonderful literacy skills, are you allowed to read The New York Times or the Wall Street Journal or any blog, for that matter?’ Because the answer’s, ‘No.’ So it’s great to have literacy, but if you don’t have access to the information, what’s the point of it? So I wish somebody would have asked about that on that trip. We heard about Mr. Gross, who is not in jail. He’s not a prisoner. He is a hostage. He is a hostage. And in the speech I heard a moment ago, I heard allusions to the idea that maybe we should — he didn’t say it, but I know the language, I know the code in this — that maybe there should be a spy swap. Here’s the problem: Mr. Gross was not a spy. You know what his crime was, if that’s what you can call it? He went to Cuba to hand out satellite radios to the Jewish community. But, we’re glad to hear that the Cubans are so nice to him that they let him walk 10,000 steps a day and do pull-ups and they let him build a necklace out of bottle cap tops. Very nice of them to allow him to do those things. How generous.

I wonder if anybody asked about terrorism, because Cuba is a state sponsor of terrorism. I wonder if anybody asked about the fact that, just a few months ago, a North Korean ship going from Cuba to North Korea was stopped in the Panama Canal and it contained items in violation of international sanctions against a government in North Korea that, a report just came out confirming what we already knew, has death camps and prison camps. And the Cubans are allowing them to evade these sanctions. Did that come up in any of the wonderful conversations in this socialist paradise in the Caribbean? I bet you it didn’t.

Let me tell you what the Cubans are really good at, because they don’t know how to run their economy, they don’t know how to build, they don’t know how to govern a people. What they are really good at is repression. What they are really good at is shutting off information to the Internet and to radio and television and social media. That’s what they’re really good at. And they’re not just good at it domestically, they’re good exporters of these things. And you want to see exhibit A, B, C and D? I’m going to show them to you right now. They have exported repression in real-time, in our hemisphere, right now.

Let me show you the first slide here. This gentleman here is the former mayor of a municipality in Caracas. His name is Leopoldo Lopez. And this is the National Guard of Venezuela pulling him into an armored truck last week. You know why? Because he’s protesting against the government. He’s protesting against the government of Venezuela, which are puppets of Havana, completely infiltrated by Cubans and agents from Havana. Not agents, openly, foreign military affairs officials involved in Venezuela. You know why? Because the Venezuela government is giving them cheap oil and free oil, in exchange for help during these sorts of repressions. So here he is, he’s sitting in jail right now because he’s protesting against the government. He’s sitting in jail right now.

So here’s the next slide. This is Genesis Carmona. She’s a beauty queen and a student in a city called Valencia. She’s on that motorcycle because the government in Venezuela and the thug, these so-called civilian groups that they’ve armed — another export from Cuba, a model the Cubans follow — they shot her in the head. She died last week. This is the government that the Cubans support. Not just verbally, not just emotionally, but with training and tactics. This is who they export — this is what they do. And she’s dead. And this is her being taken on a motorcycle to the hospital where they were unable to save her life because she was shot in the head by Venezuelan security forces.

Here’s another slide. Remember I showed you Mr. Lopez? These are his supporters being hit with water cannons — by water cannons in the street because they’re protesting against the government. This has been going on now for two weeks. This is the allies of Cuba, Venezuela, the puppets of Cuba. And this is what they do to their own people. Water cannons knocking people to the ground. Why? Because they’re protesting the government.

Let me show you the next slide. Here’s a demonstrator detained by police. Look how they drag him through the streets. This is in Caracas, Venezuela.

Let me show you another demonstrator. This is a student — by the way, these are all students in the street. You see this young man here? He was also shot in the head by security forces and pro-government groups in Caracas. This happened on February 11. This is what they do in Venezuela. This is what the allies of the Castro regime does, this is what they export. This is what they teach. This is what they support. And it doesn’t stop here.

Who are Cuba’s allies in the world? North Korea. Before he fell, the dictator in Libya, the dictator in Syria, the tyrant in Moscow. This is who they line up with. This is this wonderful paradise? By the way, this in and of itself deserves attention, what’s happening in Venezuela, in our own hemisphere. It is shameful that only three heads of state in this hemisphere have spoken out forcefully against what’s happening. It is shameful that many members of Congress who traveled to Venezuela and were friendly with Chavez, some even went to his funeral, sit by saying nothing while this is happening in our own hemisphere. And this wonderful Cuban paradise government that we heard about? This is what they support. Just this morning, the dictator that calls himself a president — never been elected to anything, Raul Castro — announced he is there for whatever they need to help them do this.

I listen to this stuff about Cuba and I listen to what’s happening in Venezuela, they’re very similar. Not just in the repression part, but the economics part. You know Venezuela’s an oil-rich country with hardworking people? They have a shortage — we don’t have an embargo against Venezuela. They have a shortage of toilet paper and tooth paste. Why? Because they are incompetent. Because communism doesn’t work. They look more and more like Cuba economically and politically every single day.

What’s the first thing the Venezuelan government did when these broke out? They cut off access to Twitter and Facebook and the Internet. They ran CNN out of there. They closed down the only Colombian station. Years before, they had closed down all the independent media outlets that criticized the government. Where did they learn that from? From Cuba. And yet we have to listen to what a paradise Cuba is. Well, I wonder how come I never read about boatloads of American refugees going to Cuba? Why have close to one and a half million people left Cuba to come here? But the only people that leave here to move there, are fugitives from the law and people that steal money from Medicare that go there to hide? Why? How come no American baseball players defect to Cuba? Why don’t any American doctors defect to Cuba if it’s such a paradise?

He cited a poll, ‘More Americans want normal relations with Cuba.’ So do I — a democratic and free Cuba. But you want us to reach out and develop friendly relationships with a serial violator of human rights, who supports what’s going on in Venezuela and every other atrocity on the planet? On issue after issue, they are always on the side of the tyrants. Look it up. And this is who we should be opening up to? Why don’t they change? Why doesn’t the Cuban government change? Why doesn’t the Venezuelan government change?

Throughout this week, I will be outlining proposals and ideas about what we need to do, the sanctions we should be pursuing against the individuals responsible for these atrocities. So with North Korea, we have sanctions. Why? Because they’re a terrorist government and an illegitimate one. Against Iran we have sanctions. Why? Because they support terrorism and they’re an illegitimate government. And against the Cubans we have sanctions. Why? Well, you just saw why. Sanctions are a tool in our foreign policy toolbox, and we, as the freest nation on Earth, are looked to by people in this country, and all around the world, to stand by them in their moment of need when they clamor for freedom and liberty and human rights. They look for America to be on their side, not for America to be cutting geopolitical deals or making it easier to sell tractors to the government there. We should be clear about these things.

But here’s the great news. I don’t know if they get C-SPAN in Cuba. I bet you the government people do. I hope you see that in America, we’re a free society. You’re allowed to come on the floor and you’re allowed to say and spread whatever you want. You think Cuba’s a paradise? You think it’s an example and a model that we should be following? You’re free to say that, here, in the press and anywhere you want. But we’re also free to come here and tell the truth. We’re also free to come here and denounce the violations of human rights and brutality. And I would suggest to my colleagues, the next time they go to Cuba, ask to meet with the Ladies in White. Ask to meet with the Yoani Sanchez. Ask to meet with the dissidents and the human rights activists that are jailed and repressed and exiled. Ask to meet with them. I bet you’re going to hear something very different than what you got from your hosts on your last trip to the wonderful Cuba, this extraordinary socialist paradise. Because it’s a joke. It’s a farce.

And I don’t think we should stand by here with our arms crossed, watching these things happen in our hemisphere and say nothing about them. I can close by saying this: Over the last week, I have tweeted about these issues. I get thousands of retweets from students and young people, until they shut them out, in Venezuela who are encouraged by the fact that we are on their side. What they want is what we have, the freedom and the liberty. That’s what all people want. And if America and its policy-makers are not going to be firmly on the side of freedom and liberty, who in the world is? Who on this planet will? If this nation is not firmly on the side of human rights and freedom and the dignity of all people, what nation on the Earth will? And if we’re prepared to walk away from that, then I submit to you that this century is going to be a dangerous and dark one. But I don’t believe that’s what the American people want from us. Nor the majority of my colleagues.

A man with an argument never has a chance against a man with an experience!

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I’m Convinced There Is Something In The Water In Washington, D.C.

Today the National Journal posted a story about the relationship between the Tea Party members in Congress and the Tea Party members trying to get elected to Congress.

The article cites some examples:

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida won’t take sides in GOP incumbent primaries because of his own experience of running against the establishment’s pick. Neither will Sen. Mike Lee of Utah, who rode tea-party support to take down a three-term incumbent. Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Ted Cruz of Texas are also unlikely to back any of the conservatives taking on Republican senators; in fact, Paul is committing heresy in the eyes of tea-party hard-liners by endorsing two Washington insiders, Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell and Wyoming Sen. Michael Enzi.

This show of decorum from senators who instigated the unpopular government shutdown is striking at a time of mounting friction between the establishment and tea-party wings of the Republican Party. So what’s behind it? The upshot of the tea-party caucus’s largely staying on the sidelines—and, in Paul’s case, endorsing two of his colleagues—is that of all the protocols the conservative insurgency has trashed on Capitol Hill, a member endorsing a colleague’s opponent remains strictly taboo.

Note to Republicans–it’s not a club–it’s a government, and right now it isn’t working very well.

The Tea Party is a grass roots movement. It was started and has been joined by people who do not like business as usual in Washington. If Congressmen who are elected by the Tea Party become part of business as usual, they will be unelected. The Tea Party will gain strength as people feel the weight of government over-reach. Since the Tea Party is responsible for what life there is in the Republican party, the Republicans in Congress need to support Tea Party candidates when they are running against business as usual candidates.

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Some Insight As To What Is Happening With The Immigration Debate

It does not take a genius to figure out that our current immigration system does not work. That is not the question. The question is, “What do we need to do to fix it?” One school of thought seems to make everyone here already legal to some extent and then close the borders at our leisure. The other extreme is to kick everyone who is here illegally out and then sort out the mess that follows. Neither approach will actually work.

It was hoped that the ‘gang of eight’ in the House of Representatives would help find a compromise position that most of us could agree on. Unfortunately, that does not seem to be the case.

On Thursday, Breitbart.com reported that Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) has left the House of Representatives version of the ‘gang of eight’ because of a change in the previously discussed bill. Initially, the House group had decided that illegal immigrants should have to pay for their own health care, but as the talks continued, Democrats insisted that illegal aliens have access to government health care.

The article reports:

“I have tremendous respect for the members of the bipartisan group who have been working with me to fix our broken immigration system,” Labrador said in a statement. “But after today’s meeting, the framework of the bill has changed in a way that I can no longer support. Like most Americans, I believe that health care is first and foremost a personal responsibility. While I will no longer be part of the bipartisan ‘Group of Eight’ House negotiators, I will not abandon my efforts to modernize our broken immigration system by securing our borders and creating a workable guest worker program. I remain hopeful that the House can pass a bill around these principles and I will keep fighting to make it happen.”

The article also reports that Senator Marco Rubio is also looking for a graceful exit from the Senate ‘gang of eight.’ Politically, I think the best outcome of this debate for the President is for nothing to get passed. In looking at what the Democrat party is insisting in including and excluding in the legislation, I suspect that President Obama may get his wish. If nothing is passed, expect to see immigration as a campaign issue in 2014, with Democrats complaining that the Republicans are causing gridlock. Understand that the Democrats are making sure that there are enough ‘poison pills’ in their immigration proposals to prevent them from being passed. It is truly a shame that we have become so political that very few Congressmen are actually considering the well being of the country.

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Understanding The Immigration Bill

First of all, I am not at all sure it is possible to understand the immigration bill–when it was introduced, it was 844 pages long; it has now grown to 867 pages.

Last night, I was able to attend a presentation explaining the Immigration Bill at the Northborough Public Library. The presentation was put on by the Northborough Tea Party. The speaker was Jessica Vaughan, Director of Policy Studies for the Center for Immigration Studies.

Jessica Vaughan posted an article at the Center for Immigration Studies website on May 2 which explains the problems with the current immigration bill.

The article lists several problems with the current bill, these are only a few:

  • The bill allows the legalization of aliens who have been convicted of up to three misdemeanors on separate occasions, excluding “minor” traffic offenses. This provision will allow the legalization of those with multiple offenses for drunk driving, vehicular homicide, domestic violence, certain sex offenses, theft, identity theft, and other misdemeanors.
  • It requires immigration agencies to ignore convictions under state laws on alien smuggling, human trafficking, and harboring illegal aliens altogether.
  • It waives criminal offenses for anyone under 18 (as opposed to 16 under current law), no matter the seriousness of the offense, and even if the offender was tried as an adult. This provision will be most helpful to convicted gang members aged 16-18.
  • It eliminates all enhancements and punishments for aggravated felons that allow for these individuals to be barred from re-entry or punished if they do. It permits aggravated felons to be placed in “soft” detention such as group homes and electronic monitoring.
  • The bill forces the government to justify the detention of aliens charged with being deportable — and whose detention is mandatory by law due to the severity of the offense, such as aggravated felons — and guarantees aliens a hearing on the detention every 90 days.
  • For the first time in history, the Attorney General would be required by law to provide lawyers to certain aliens in deportation proceedings at taxpayer expense.
  • The bill provides sweeping new standards of judicial review for aliens denied benefits. It expands review into the federal district courts as well as circuit courts of appeal, and encourages class action suits against DHS.

We need immigration reform. However, we need immigration reform that works and borders that prevent further illegal aliens from entering the country. Until the border is secure, there really is no point in doing immigration reform–the number of illegal aliens involved would simply overwhelm the social welfare systems of America and collapse the current safety net.

One of the things that Ms. Vaughan pointed out was the fact that the immigration bill says that the citizens legalized in the immigration bill would be ineligible for federal assistance for ten years. However, it is the states who are in charge of government assistance and would determine someone’s eligibility–so that portion of the bill is simply nice words that mean nothing.

Yesterday The Hill reported the following:

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), a central member of the Senate Gang of Eight, expressed disappointment Tuesday after senators rejected a proposal to strengthen the system for tracking visa holders entering and exiting the country.

The panel rejected a Republican amendment to require a biometric entry and exit system at ports of entry before granting permanent legal status to 11 million illegal immigrants.

In 1986, President Reagan and Congress promised America a bill that would solve the immigration problem once and for all. That bill would secure the border, enforce immigration laws, and wipe the slate clean so that those here illegally at that time could become citizens. At the present time, the border is not secure, the immigration laws were enforced between 2007 and 2009, but now we are back to our old ways, and many of those here illegally have no desire to become citizens so they have not.

We have two choices–we can believe Congress when they tell us that this time they really will enforce immigration laws and seal the border, or we can fight this bill with everything we have to make sure it does not become law. Frankly, I choose the latter.

We need immigration reform. That can be done slowly in sections so that Americans can read and understand the laws being considered, and so that Congress can understand both the problems we face if we continue our current immigration program and the need to pass a bill that will actually solve our current and future problems. I also strongly suggest that Congress actually take the time to read the bill. We need to find out what is in the bill before it is passed–not the other way around.

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Mr. Paul Goes To Washington

According to a Mediaite story posted this morning, Senator Rand Paul ended his filibuster in the Senate at 12:39 this morning.

YouTube posted the video of the Senator’s closing remarks:

The article reports:

During the half-day-long filibuster session, Paul was joined by fellow Republican Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and Mike Lee (R-UT). Despite his support for Brennan’s CIA nomination, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) joined the effort, voicing his concerns about the Obama administration’s authority to assassinate American citizens without congressional oversight.

America needs to have this discussion. I don’t even like the idea of Americans being killed based on congressional oversight. In a country where the Biblical view on gay marriage may be considered hate speech and those in the the Catholic Church are not allow to practice their religious beliefs outside of their church, who determines who or what is dangerous? When we arrested the underwear bomber after an obvious attempt at terrorism, we read him his Miranda rights and allowed him to hire a lawyer. Now the President seems to think he has the right to kill American citizens on American soil without the benefit of either a lawyer or a trial. The problem here is very simple, “Who determines who is a danger to the country?” Depending on who holds the office of the presidency, we might see Bill Ayers being called a threat or we might see Glenn Beck declared a threat. Politics could easily influence these decisions. There is a reason we have a court system. It is not perfect, but it is better than the idea of the government being able to kill American citizens at will.

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Some Suggestions For Cutting Government

Yesterday Fox News posted a story that provided some perspective on the current sequestration debate.

The article reports:

The sequester is expected to take a $85 billion bite out of the fiscal 2013 budget, though only half of that impact is expected to be felt this year.
But lawmakers say the government already has $45 billion in unspent money which could be used to offset the shortfall.

Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. introduced legislation on Tuesday that would require the director of the White House budget office to rescind funds that haven’t yet been obligated.

The article further reports:

Republican Sen. Tom Coburn has also identified several programs at the Pentagon he’d set aside, including a video called “grill sergeants” in which the instructors show their favorite recipes; money for a plan to send a space ship to another solar system; funds to find advancements in beef jerky from France; and $6 billion on questionable research, including what lessons about democracy and decision-making could be learned — from fish. 

I have enough input into my decisions–I have no plans to consult my local fish.

Please follow the link above to see some of the places where money is available and government spending can be cut. The upside of this discussion is that it will bring attention to government waste. Hopefully we can learn from our past overspending and cut our spending in order to reduce the credit card bill we are handing our children.

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The Response To The State of the Union Address

For those of you who are not in shock by the fact that Marco Rubio actually took a drink of water, here is the video and some highlights from his speech Tuesday night.

The speech and video are posted at the Daily Beast. The video is also on YouTube. Here is the video:

A few highlights from the speech:

But America is exceptional because we believe that every life, at every stage, is precious, and that everyone everywhere has a God-given right to go as far as their talents and hard work will take them.

…This opportunity – to make it to the middle class or beyond no matter where you start out in life – it isn’t bestowed on us from Washington. It comes from a vibrant free economy where people can risk their own money to open a business. And when they succeed, they hire more people, who in turn invest or spend the money they make, helping others start a business and create jobs.

Presidents in both parties – from John F. Kennedy to Ronald Reagan – have known that our free enterprise economy is the source of our middle class prosperity.

…This idea – that our problems were caused by a government that was too small – it’s just not true. In fact, a major cause of our recent downturn was a housing crisis created by reckless government policies.

And the idea that more taxes and more government spending is the best way to help hardworking middle class taxpayers – that’s an old idea that’s failed every time it’s been tried.

More government isn’t going to help you get ahead. It’s going to hold you back.

More government isn’t going to create more opportunities. It’s going to limit them.

…And tonight, he even criticized us for refusing to raise taxes to delay military cuts – cuts that were his idea in the first place.

But his favorite attack of all is that those who don’t agree with him – they only care about rich people.

Mr. President, I still live in the same working class neighborhood I grew up in. My neighbors aren’t millionaires. They’re retirees who depend on Social Security and Medicare. They’re workers who have to get up early tomorrow morning and go to work to pay the bills. They’re immigrants, who came here because they were stuck in poverty in countries where the government dominated the economy.

The tax increases and the deficit spending you propose will hurt middle class families. It will cost them their raises. It will cost them their benefits. It may even cost some of them their jobs.

And it will hurt seniors because it does nothing to save Medicare and Social Security.

So Mr. President, I don’t oppose your plans because I want to protect the rich. I oppose your plans because I want to protect my neighbors.

Senator Rubio concludes:

This dream – of a better life for their children – it’s the hope of parents everywhere. Politicians here and throughout the world have long promised that more government can make those dreams come true.

But we Americans have always known better. From our earliest days, we embraced economic liberty instead. And because we did, America remains one of the few places on earth where dreams like these even have a chance.

Each time our nation has faced great challenges, what has kept us together was our shared hope for a better life.

Now, let that hope bring us together again. To solve the challenges of our time and write the next chapter in the amazing story of the greatest nation man has ever known.

Thank you for listening. May God bless all of you. May God bless our President. And may God continue to bless the United States of America.

The reason that a lot of the media has focused on Senator Rubio’s drink of water is that they don’t want you to hear the wisdom in the speech.

 

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The Kickoff Question For 2016

It is too early to be talking about the election of 2016, but evidently it is not too early for the press to begin demonizing the Republican contenders.

In January 2012, George Stephanopoulos asked Mitt Romney the following question at the Republican presidential primary debate (Newsbusters):

Governor Romney, do you believe that states have the right to ban contraception? Or is that trumped by a constitutional right to privacy?”

The question really made no sense–it was not related to any current issue, and some pundits on the right wondered why Stephanopoulos asked it. It became obvious later on that part of the Democrat strategy in the 2012 election was to accuse the Republicans of waging a ‘war on women’ and saying that Republicans would take away a woman’s right to birth control. The question was a preemptive strike to begin debate on a subject that was not really important, but had possible political value when dealing with an uninformed electorate.

The preemptive strike has now been aimed at Florida Senator Marco Rubio. GQ asked the Senator, “How old do you think the earth is?” What in the world does that question have to do with anything?

Shawn Mitchell at Townhall.com points out:

First is the premeditated bad faith of an upscale publication. The random question is untethered  from public policy, from issues in the US Senate, or measures Rubio might pursue. It arose from a singular goal unrelated to reporting current events: GQ wanted to conjure a killer question, something that might damage a popular potential GOP presidential candidate.  It’s easy to imagine the query came from a group brainstorm over lunch: “Think, people…how can we trip him?!”

Second on the list is the poisonous effect of unresting, perpetual attack machinery.  Scarcely had the interview hit GQ’s website and newsstands when it ricocheted across the blogosphere and commentariat, with sneers from the left and defenses from the right. Barack Obama is two months shy of putting his hand on the Bible for a second term. Yet, already an anticipated candidate for 2016 is under manufactured attack for how he might read that book’s teachings.

This is disgusting, and until America’s electorate becomes informed enough to make attacks like this ineffective, these attacks will continue. The media will not police themselves, but when Americans begin to ignore stories like this and stop buying the newspapers and magazines that publish this trash, the trash will end. It is truly up to us.

 

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Are These People Going To Vote ?

The Hill reported today on the changes that President Obama unilaterally made to America’s immigration policies. The Daily Caller also posted the story.

The Hill reports:

The new policy will not grant citizenship to children who came to the United States as illegal immigrants, but will remove the threat of deportation and grant them the right to work in the United States. 

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the policy change will apply to those who came to the United States before they were 16 and who are younger than 30 if they have lived here for five years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or served in the military. 

The Daily Caller points out:

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, called the change a “decision to grant amnesty to potentially millions of illegal immigrants.”

“Many illegal immigrants will falsely claim they came here as children and the federal government has no way to check whether their claims are true,” Smith said in a statement. “And once these illegal immigrants are granted deferred action, they can then apply for a work permit, which the administration routinely grants 90% of the time.”

However, Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, who sponsored the DREAM Act, welcomed the announcement that he said “will give these young immigrants their chance to come out of the shadows and be part of the only country they’ve ever called home.”

I am sure we are going to hear more about this as the November election approaches. There are, however, a few obvious points about this policy change that need to be looked at. First of all, it is an obvious move on the part of the President to get the Hispanic vote. Second of all, it does not solve any of the immigration problem. What happens to the parents of these children–are they granted amnesty also? Third, it will not help the teenage unemployment rate, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates is currently 14 percent. This is, unfortunately, a political move rather than a practical move. I understand that nothing is going to get done in Washington between now and the election, but it would have made sense to put immigration on the list for the new Congress and administration (if there is a new administration) to deal with after January.

Marco Rubio posted the following on his website:

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued the following statement regarding today’s announcement by the Department of Homeland Security regarding its immigration enforcement policies:

“There is broad support for the idea that we should figure out a way to help kids who are undocumented through no fault of their own, but there is also broad consensus that it should be done in a way that does not encourage illegal immigration in the future. This is a difficult balance to strike, one that this new policy, imposed by executive order, will make harder to achieve in the long run.

“Today’s announcement will be welcome news for many of these kids desperate for an answer, but it is a short term answer to a long term problem. And by once again ignoring the Constitution and going around Congress, this short term policy will make it harder to find a balanced and responsible long term one.”

The Senator has it right.

 

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The Role Of Internet News Sites

 

English: Marco Rubio, U.S. Senator from Florid...

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The Weekly Standard posted an article yesterday about the role of an Internet blogger in bringing to light the errors in a very negative Reuters story about Florida Senator Marco Rubio. Matt Lewis, a blogger for the Daily Caller, pointed out the errors in the story, forcing Reuters to correct five of the items listed in the story. Reuters has admitted that the story is regrettable.

The article at The Weekly Standard reports:

It was so bad, in fact, that the editors and writer involved have been asked not to talk about it. (I reached out to editors David Lindsey and Eric Walsh, but have not heard back.)

The article, by David Adams, had intended to detail why Rubio was an unlikely pick for Vice President: “Rubio may not be as coveted as Gingrich or Romney would have it appear as they press for votes in Florida, where more than 450,000 Hispanics identify themselves as Republicans,” Reuters David Adams wrote. “Despite his reputation as a watchdog over federal spending, Rubio, 40, has had significant financial problems that could keep him from passing any vetting process as a potential vice presidential choice, Republican and Democratic strategists say.”

But after pressure from the Rubio staff, Reuters was forced to issue corrections that quickly became a larger talking point than the article itself.

Without the work of Matt Lewis, this story would have been allowed to go unchallenged, and a good man would have been smeared in the press. That is the reason why we need the Internet and Internet news sources!

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A Rising Star In The Republican Party

Marco Rubio, Florida Republican & former speak...

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Senator Marco Rubio was elected in 2010 to represent Florida in the Senate. He was born in Miami to parents who had fled the dictatorship of Fidel Castro after the Cuban revolution. Senator Rubio’s recent speech at the Reagan Library is an amazing mix of wisdom and common sense.

Power Line posted the following excerpt:

[W]e must begin by embracing certain principles that are absolutely true. Number one – the free enterprise system does not create poverty. The free enterprise system does not leave people behind. People are poor and people are left behind because they do not have access to the free enterprise system because something in their lives or in their community has denied them access to the free enterprise system. All over the world this truism is expressing itself every single day. Every nation on the Earth that embraces market economics and the free enterprise system is pulling millions of its people out of poverty. The free enterprise system creates prosperity, not denies it.

The second truism that we must understand is that poverty does not create our social problems, our social problems create our poverty. Let me give you an example. All across this country, at this very moment, there are children who are born into and are living with five strikes against them, already, through no fault of their own. They’re born into substandard housing in dangerous neighborhoods, to broken families, being raised by their grandmothers because they never knew their father and their mom is either working two jobs to make ends meet or just not home. These kids are going to struggle to succeed unless something dramatic happens in their life.

These truisms are important because they lead the public policies that define the proper role of government. On the prosperity side, the number one objective of our economic policy, in fact the singular objective of our economic policy from a government perspective is simple – it’s growth. It’s not distribution of wealth, it’s not picking winners and losers. The goal of our public policy should be growth. Growth in our economy, the creation of jobs, and of opportunity, of equality of opportunity through our governmental policies.

Now often when I give these speeches, members of the media and others get frustrated because there is nothing new or novel in it. We don’t have to reinvent this. It’s worked before and it will work again and they are simple things. Like a tax code that’s fair, predictable, easy to comply with. Like a regulatory framework that doesn’t exist to justify the existence of the regulators, that doesn’t exist to accomplish through regulation and rulemaking what they couldn’t accomplish through the Congress.

And it is the proper role of government to invest in infrastructure. Yes, government should build roads and bridges, but it should do so as part of economic development as part of infrastructure. Not as a jobs program.

And government should invest in our people at the state level. Education is important, critically important. We must educate and train our children to compete and succeed in the 21st century. Our kids are not going to grow up to compete with children in Alabama or Mississippi. They’re going to grow up to compete with kids in India, and China, all over the world; children who are learning to compete and succeed in the 21st century themselves.

These are proper roles of government within the framework of creating an environment where economic security and prosperity is possible.

The concepts in the speech need to be shouted during the current debate about our budget deficits. The first is the idea that free enterprise does not create poverty–it provides a vehicle for people to escape poverty, and the second is that poverty does not create our social problems–it is the result of those problems.

Daniel Patrick Moynihan understood what the war on poverty would do to America when Lyndon Johnson began the program:

The steady expansion of welfare programs can be taken as a measure of the steady disintegration of the Negro family structure over the past generation in the United States.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan

It’s time to examine how we spend money to fight poverty in America. Free money is not a solution to poverty. Free money destroys self-esteem and ambition–both of which are needed to overcome poverty.


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