Why Voter Education Is Important

The Corner at National Review posted a picture of the flier that Thad Cochran passed out before the Mississippi Republican primary election.

This is the picture:

aaaaaaaathadcochranI am ashamed that a Republican ran this sort of campaign. However, this campaign would have been much less effective on an educated voter base. In the end, the voters are responsible for who they send to Washington. As much as I hate to see Harry Reid stay in power, I hope Senator Cochran loses in the general election. This is a disgrace. It is also a reason conservative Republicans should stop giving money to the Republican Party, but only donate to individual candidates.

The Democrats have branded the Tea Party as racist as a way to undermine the message of smaller government and lower taxes. It is a shame that some establishment Republicans have chosen to echo that message. The Tea Party represents the only hope of change in Washington. That is why the political class is so opposed to their message.

Why The Freedom Of Information Act Is Important

Judicial Watch is an organization that has held both Democrat and Republican politicians accountable to the people who voted for them. One of their best weapons used to hold politicians accountable is the Freedom of Information Act. Even when the press has walked away from a story, Judicial Watch keeps looking for information. In the case of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Scandal, their tenacity has paid off.

The Daily Caller is reporting today that Judicial Watch has obtained emails showing that Democrat Senator Carl Levin pressured the IRS to target conservative groups.

The article reports:

Levin, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs’ permanent subcommittee on investigations, wrote a March 30, 2012 letter to then-IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman discussing the “urgency” of the issue of possible political activity by nonprofit applicants. Levin asked if the IRS was sending out additional information requests to applicant groups and citing an IRS rejection letter to a conservative group as an example of how the IRS should be conducting its business.

The article reports that the IRS targeting is easily traceable to Washington, D.C.:

IRS official Holly Paz wrote a July 6, 2010 email to Washington-based IRS lawyer Steven Grodnitzky “to let Cindy and Sharon know how we have been handling Tea Party applications in the last few months.” Grodnitzky replied to the email, confirming that the Washington-based Exempt Organization Technical unit (EOT) was designing the targeting in the nation’s capital.

“EOT is working the Tea party applications in coordination with Cincy. We are developing a few applications here in DC and providing copies of our development letters with the agent to use as examples in the development of their cases,” Grodnitzky wrote.

“Chip Hull [another lawyer in IRS headquarters] is working these cases in EOT and working with the agent in Cincy, so any communication should include him as well. Because the Tea party applications are the subject of an SCR [Sensitive Case Report], we cannot resolve any of the cases without coordinating with Rob,” Grodnitzky wrote.

“Rob” is believed to be then-IRS director of rulings and agreements Rob Choi, who was based at the agency’s Washington headquarters, according to Judicial Watch.

This use of the IRS for political purposes by whichever party is in power will continue unless it is stopped in its tracks now. I strongly recommend that you email your Representative and your Senators and tell them that you want those who used the IRS for political purposes held accountable. Otherwise, this will be the new normal.

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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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Never Put Anything In An Email That You Don’t Want To Be Made Public

Today’s Washington Times posted an article about some emails from Lois Lerner that have been released by the House committee investigating the IRS. The emails seem to show that the IRS specifically targeted Tea Party and conservative groups in 2011 in the run-up to the 2012 election.

There are a number of emails that are detailed in the article:

“Tea Party Matter very dangerous,” Ms. Lerner said in the 2011 email, saying that those applications could end up being the “vehicle to go to court” to get more clarity on a 2010 Supreme Court ruling on campaign finance rules.

…“It is what it is,” she said in the email, released Thursday by the Ways and Means Committee. “Although the original story isn’t as pretty as we’d like, once we learned this [sic.] were off track, we have done what we can to change the process, better educate our staff and move the cases. So, we will get dinged, but we took steps before the ‘dinging’ to make things better and we have written procedures.”

That email suggests agency employees knew they had gone overboard in their scrutiny — despite top IRS officials telling Congress that there wasn’t any special scrutiny of conservative groups.

Needless to say, the Democrats on the investigating committee are claiming that there was no targeting of conservative groups. I suspect that there will be more hearings in the near future.

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At Some Point The Republicans Need To Realize That They Are Not Playing TiddlyWinks

Yesterday National Review Online posted an article about the House Oversight Committee hearings on the Internal Revenue Service last week. The article focused on the attacks on Inspector General (IG) J. Russell George. This is the political equivalent of a defense lawyer attacking the District Attorney because he does not want to deal with the evidence against his client.

I am a registered Republican only because there is no real Conservative Party at this time. Generally I can go along with most of what the Republicans do, but if they don’t wake up and smell the coffee, they will be permanently known as the Stupid Party.

The attacks on the IG were designed to change the subject. Unless some Republicans start speaking up, the attacks will have served their purpose.

Scott Johnson at Power Line also posted an article about last week’s hearings. In his article he pointed out that none of the mainstream reported that the attack on the IG was unwarranted and false.

The Democrats‘ claim is that the IG neglected to mention that progressive groups were targeted as well as Tea Party groups. That probably has something to do with the fact that the claim is false.

The story at National Review states:

The accusations contradict the obvious facts: The 14 BOLO lists Levin released, though they contain the term “Progressive,” instruct IRS screeners to treat the applications of progressive organizations differently from those of tea-party groups. In George’s words, the “Progressive” entry “did not include instructions on how to refer cases that met the criteria,” whereas tea-party cases were automatically sent to higher-ups in the agency for coordination with Washington, D.C. The “Occupy” entry to which Cummings refers instructs screeners to send cases to the same group processing tea-party applications. The head of that group, though, told Congress that when she received applications from liberal groups, she sent them back to “general inventory.” George on Thursday told the House panel that, of the 298 cases scrutinized for political activity, zero fell under the “Occupy” rubric. The “Progressive” and “Occupy” listings may be problematic — it is not clear why the terms were added to the list — but the political activity of liberal groups simply was not put under the microscope.

The use of the IRS for political purposes is wrong. It is also dangerous to our republic. It becomes even more dangerous with all the information the IRS will be overseeing under ObamaCare. What was done with the targeting of Tea Party groups is a threat to our republic. If this abuse continues, our elections will be neither free nor fair.

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The Establishment Republicans Are Still Trying To Dilute The Power Of The Tea Party

Last November was a pivotal election. Many of the Republicans who won victories in Congress owe their election to the Tea Party. The Tea Party reflected a growing concern on the part of many Americans about the growth of government and the rate of spending. Had the Tea Party formed a third party, they would probably disappeared on the trash heap of history, but they were smarter than that–they decided to try to work within the bounds of the current Republican Party. The Republican Party has not totally embraced the Tea Party. The Republican Party has said most of the right things, but their actions have not backed up their words. Both political parties are part of the establishment that is entrenched in Washington. The Tea Party is a threat to that establishment. Thus, when the Tea Party Congressmen begin to move into positions of power, they usually encounter pretty strong opposition from both parties.

Big Government posted a story today which illustrates the power struggle between establishment Washington and the Tea Party. Next week Senate Republicans will vote for a new Conference Vice Chairman.

The article reports:

Nevertheless, it is the way in which the contest between the two senators came about that has perhaps created a bit more tension. According to RedState, up until this week, Sen. Johnson was the only candidate for the vice chairman’s position, and the election was scheduled for January. However, Sen. Blunt announced his candidacy on Tuesday of this week, an action which was followed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Kentucky) decisions to move up the election to next week, rather than January, and to begin a supportive campaign for Sen. Blunt.

Needless to say, Senator Johnson is considered the more conservative of the two men.

The article concludes:

Conservative Republicans will need the strength of the vice chairman’s post to bring about the reforms needed in the country. Sen. Johnson has not only stuck to the principles he put forward when he ran for the Senate, but he is also known as a bridge builder between conservatives and establishment Republicans- something years of business experience has taught him.

About the two Senate candidates, Sen. DeMint said, “Roy is a friend of mine, but Ron Johnson is what I consider the right face for the Republican Party. He’s a nonpolitician, business guy, reform-minded.”

If you have a Republican Senator, think about calling him or her to speak about this important vote.

We need to make it clear to those in Washington that they need to do what is necessary to stop the growth of government and the spending that goes with it or they will be voted out of office. We have to elect enough conservatives in 2012 to actually fight establishment Washington. Just being a Republican does not make you part of the solution–in many cases it makes you part of the problem.


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Why Does The Tea Party Need Permits And Occupy Movement People Do Not ?


A few members of the Tea Party have wondered why when they hold a rally in a city they have to pay for permits, put up port-a-potties, pay for police details, etc. The Occupy Wall Street protesters don’t seem to be required to do this.

Yesterday, Big Government reported:

Two weeks after the Richmond Tea Party delivered an invoice to Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones for costs incurred for previous rallies, we received a letter from the City of Richmond formally stating that the city is auditing our Tea Party. 

The Tea Party sent the invoice to illustrate the fact that Occupy Richmond had occupied Kanawha Plaza for two weeks without having to meet the city’s requirements for a rally.

The article reports:

The blog Virginia Right reported that the city provided services such as portable toilets, trash pickup, etc. The incomplete invoices obtained from the city totaled $7,000. This was only a portion of the actual costs to taxpayers because the costs of police, helicopter and incarcerations were not included. Also not accounted for was the 24-hour police protection of the Mayor’s home after the Occupiers moved their camp next door to the Mayor’s house. The Richmond Tea Party, conversely, paid for all services for our rallies, including the police, portable toilets, park fees and permits, amounting to approximately $8,500.

The response by the city of Richmond to the Tea Party invoice? The Richmond Tea Party received a letter from the Richmond Department of Finance saying that the city was going to audit them and requesting some of their financial records.

The article concludes:

The Richmond Tea Party stands for constitutional adherence, and clearly this has been unequal treatment under the law. We stand for fiscal restraint, and this is a case where a mayor used taxpayer money for his personal agenda. We stand for virtue and accountability in government and that is why we have taken a stand. We will be submitting a Virginia Freedom of Information Act request for all city correspondence pertaining to our Tea Party and its decision to audit us. We will not be intimidated and we will not back down. A Richmond attorney and fellow Tea Partier is currently reviewing our situation. Also, the ACLU has also contacted us inquiring about this matter.

The Tea Party and the ACLU working together? This is going to be a very interesting case because it will impact cities all over the country that have charged the Tea Party for rallies while letting the taxpayers pay for the expenses of the Occupy people.

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Rolled Again ?

Are the Republicans about to be rolled by the Democrats on the Super Committee? The Hill reported yesterday that word has leaked out that Republicans on the super committee have put nominal tax increases on the table. This has resulted in the Tea Party circulating a petition blasting any supercommittee compromise that includes tax increases.

The article reports:

“Reports that the Republican members of the committee have agreed to a framework of tax increases to replace spending cuts is appalling,” Tea Party Express co-chairman Amy Kremer wrote in an email sent to members asking them to fight any compromise. “The election of 2010 was a total repudiation of the ‘tax and spend’ mentality that has brought America to a fiscal crisis with excessive spending and an out-of-control national debt.”

The Hill is not necessarily and objective news source and reports that the Tea Party is forcing the Republicans into an uncompromising position. That is not the whole story. The Tea Party members were elected to Congress to stop the runaway spending. Every time they have attempted to do that, they have been met head-on by the Washington establishment–both Republican and Democrat. If the Tea Party cannot stop the spending, the current rate of spending will probably bankrupt the American economy by next summer. Frankly, until the Republican leadership changes, I don’t believe we have any hope of solving our economic crisis. The other thing to remember here is that the Democrats have done very little compromising–they are letting the Republicans negotiate with themselves in the hope that the Republicans will either cave or no deal will be reached. Either way, the Republicans will have a very difficult time retaining any House of Representative seats in 2012. The Tea Party was elected to do something. If they do nothing, they will probably not be reelected.

The problem is not that our taxes are too low. The problem is that government spending, traditionally at about 18 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) are now over 20 percent. It is time to cut the spending!

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I Never Felt At Risk At A Tea Party Rally

I went to my first Tea Party event in Providence, Rhode Island, in 2009. Due to my husband’s work schedule and the fact that I am a total wimp about driving in Providence, I was only there for the last hour. I saw young families with children, grandparents and college students. There was no violence–there wasn’t even any litter that I saw. I never felt uncomfortable, and I really don’t look like I would be a very difficult target to attack. In 2010 I attended a Tea Party rally in Worcester because Worcester is part of my voting district. Same story.

Fast forward to 2011 and the Occupy Wall Street movement. I understand that New York City generally has more crime than either Providence or Worcester, but there is still some semblance of order in New York City (or so I thought). Hot Air reported yesterday that the Occupy Wall Street group at Zuccotti Park has set up a ‘safe’ tent for women to protect them from the rapes that have occurred at night in the Occupy Wall Street settlement. I suppose I should be grateful that the group cared enough to set up a ‘women only’ tent to protect women from rape, but it bothers me that these ‘concerned citizens’ would have a problem with rapists within their group.

Hot Air reports on the double standard in reporting the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street:

This can’t be repeated enough: With a few exceptions, foremost among them the New York Post, the coverage of OWS protests compared to the coverage of tea-party protests is the worst media double standard in recent history. Nothing compares, because nothing else involves this much distortion on both ends of the coverage. It’s not just that most press outlets (like the protesters themselves) look the other way at depravity happening inside Obamaville, it’s that for years they treated the tea-party movement as some sort of feral mob that was forever on the brink of rampaging through the streets — like, say, Occupy Oakland just did. If you missed it when I posted it last week, go watch the ad the DNC ran in August 2009 when tea partiers first started showing up to town halls on ObamaCare. That set the tone. We began the year with tea-party pols being smeared as killers over a shooting they had nothing to do with and we end it with actual rapes being shrugged off by the press because they’re bad PR for a movement they support. Disgrace.

That pretty much sums it up.

These are two of my pictures from the Providence Tea Party. This group is about as wholesome as groups can be!


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