Tag Archives: David Paterson

Kirsten Gillibrand; The Rodney Dangerfield Of Democrat Politics

Bookmark and Share   Kirsten Gillibrand is truly the Rodney Dangerfield of Democrat politics. She just can’t get any respect.

As a little known Congresswoman from upstate New York, Governor David Paterson appointed her to fill the Senate seat vacated by Hillary Clinton when thge former First But Not Only Lady was taken out of the picture after President Obama made her Secretary of State.   Gillibrand was not Governor Paterson’s first choice.  For that matter, Paterson wasn’t even the first choice of New Yorker’s for Governor. He only came into the position when as Lieutenant Governor, he assumed the office because of a sex and money scandal that forced Governor Eliot Spitzer out of office. Since that time Paterson has not exactly been seen as a great Governor. His approval numbers have been in the dumps.

So few were encouraged when he was given the chance to appoint Hillary Clinton’s successor in the Senate. But people were actually mildly excited when word came down that David Paterson was using the appointment to rekindle Camelot.

His first choice for the job was Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of iconic President John F. Kennedy and a true, long time resident of New York.

As the decision was leaked, it initially met with an enthusiastic reaction. Many, including Caroline, even lobbied for her appointment to the seat. But under intense scrutiny, before anything was ever official, Caroline stumbled. She could not answer questions as to why she wanted the job. She also failed to demonstrate any true desire for the job. This did not bode with many Democrats who, before Caroline was mentioned, saw Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, the son of former Governor Mario Cuomo, as a top choice for to fill the vacancy.

Then suddenly, Caroline withdrew herself from consideration.

The name game was back on. But could it really end up being Andrew Cuomo?

Had it been Attorney General Anna Cuomo, maybe.

Since the appointment was to replace Hillary Clinton, the rules of politics kind of made this a “woman’s” seat and if low-in-the-polls, acting Governor Paterson betrayed that misconception, he would have had a bunch of bitter, testosterone injected, females holding a grudge against him.

So after much consternation , Paterson made his big announcement and appointed Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand to the US Senate.

The question then became who is Kirsten Gillibrand?

Gillibrand was practically unknown.

If Paterson’s qualifications were that the seat go to a woman, who is liberal and in Congress, there is a whole host of more accomplished and well recognized candidates, such as Nydia Velasquez, Nita Lowey, Carolyn Maloney, Carolyn McCarthy, Louise Slaughter, or former Congresswoman and Vice Presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro, to name just a few. In fact, till this day the question is still who is Kirsten Gillibrand. She has been in office for just about one year now and all that she has really done is be overshadowed by the domineering, senior senator and media whore, Schmuck Schumer.

And there in lies her problem. She was unknown and largely remains unknown. She has failed to hang her hat on any single issue or make a name for herself as anything special. Without any claim to fame to latch on to, a mountain full of hungry opportunists are just dying to push her out of the way and be king of the hill.

There was talk about several Democrat challenges to Gillibrand. For a while some lesser known names than hers toyed with the idea. Then former New York City Comptroller and the recent Democrat candidate for Mayor New York City, Bill Thompson thought about it. Having come closer to defeating Mike Bloomberg than originally expected, Thompson sees a bright future for himself. But he decided that he will forgo a run for the Senate and probably take another shot at Mayor in four years.

Then there was Eliot Spitzer. Even disgraced Governor Spitzer considered making a comeback by challenging Gillibrand for the nomination. Just about the only person who had not considered was Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. Andrew is instead gunning for David Paterson’s job. Cuomo is anticipating defeating Paterson for the Democrat nomination and sailing into the Governor’s mansion.

In retrospect, David Paterson would have been much smarter to have appointed Cuomo to the Senate seat instead of Gillibrand. She was no threat to him. And had he been the Senator instead of her, few would be threatening to challenge him. Unlike Gillibrand, his name ID is high and his favorability rating are sky high.

Without that behind her, any Democrat with a green card and a dream has been looking at the chance of taking Kirsten Gillibrand’s seat away from her.

In fact more Democrats are eyeing her seat than Republicans.

Rudy declined to run and so did several others. Currently, the only Republican name of recognition considering it is former Governor George Pataki and that is unlikely.

Now the latest Democrat to contemplate shoving Gillibrand out of the picture is the cocky and arrogant, Harold Ford, Jr.

Harold Ford, Jr. is a feisty and ambitious fellow from Tennessee. He inherited a seat in congressional that was held by his father for 12 terms. In 2002 he was so sure of himself that he ran for House Democrat Leader against then Minority Whip Nancy Pelosi. Nancy beat him.

After one more term in Congress, Harold announced that he was going to seek the open U.S. Senate Seat from Tennessee. He received the Democrat nomination and proceeded to lose to Republican Bob Corker. Not long after that, he fled his beloved Tennessee, moved to New York City and took up employment as a political insider for the brokerage firm Merrill Lynch.

Now like another southern carpetbagger, Ford is threatening a challenge to Kirsten Gillibrand.

His overtures have not been met positively. After several previous possible challenges to her nomination were averted, the White House stepped in and declared that they are behind Gillibrand and no one else. This ticked off Ford. Apparently he is unaware of President Obama’s Czar-like propensity to tell who is or isn’t running for what. During the summer, the White House clearly indicated that they expect David Paterson to not seek reelection to Governor of New York because of his sagging poll numbers. They are insisting upon the nomination of Andrew Cuomo for Governor.

In the end, Ford will probably not run. He most likely won’t be able to.

You see, for all the disrespect that Senator Gillibrand is getting from fellow New York Democrats and even out of town Democrats, she has raised a campaign war chest of $7.5 million. In just nine months. In just that small amount of time, in office as a US Senator, she has raised the third largest amount of campaign money of anyone in the Senate. Only Majority Leader Harry Reid, and New York’s senior Senator Chuck Schumer has raised more. Harold Ford would have a lot of catching up to do to be competitive with Gillibrand in a primary. Even though she may not be a household name in New York yet, she is a good politician. Supporters claim she is a future President. Allies describe her as an incessant campaigner who never misses a hand to shake or baby to kiss. If true, combined with her money, pleasant demeanor, the power of incumbency and Harold Ford’s Tennessee history and voting record, he would have a better chance at catching a fully prepared catfish dinner for two, right out of New York City’s Central Park Lake than he would at winning a  New York US Senate seat.  At least under these current conditions.

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Rudy The Red Republican Senator In Democrat Blue New York ?

Bookmark and Share    Politicos are painting a picture that will allow New York state to become a battleground state in next year’s midterm elections. A number of established Albany insiders who forecast the political climate like Al Roker giving the weekly weather, are indicating that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani will be seeking the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate seat occupied by Kirsten Gillibrand.

The unelected Gillibrand was appointed by the doomed replacement governor for Eliot Spitzer, David Paterson. She replaced Hillary Clinton after President Obama tapped her for Secretary of State. In 2000 Clinton became the carpetbag senator in an attempt to use New York as her launch pad to the presidency.

Some are suggesting that Rudy, who unlike Hillary is a New Yorker, has similar plans as the former First Lady.

One of the state’s most insightful political gossip columnists, Fred Dicker recently reported that an unnamed state Republican official sees the US Senate as a national platform that will enable the former mayor to become a leading voice on issues like homeland security and defense. The thought being that with such a stage to shine on, particularly regarding those issues, Rudy could become a more viable candidate for President in 2012 than he was in 2008.

That may be pretty difficult.

Rudy is too liberal for the national party. That and the fact that his political team are lacking of any decent organizational abilities or political savvy would make Rudy an early casualty in the 2012 primaries for the Republican presidential nomination, just as he was in 2008. By Fred Dicker’s account, in regards to Rudy, one prominent New York Republican stated

“He has a terrible political organization: His people are nasty and vindictive — not a good combination — and I hear he’s pretty upset with the advice he got on all of this”.

This is true. I have had the opportunity, the unfortunate opportunity, to work with many of them and all I can say is, they were part of the reason why Rudy lost his first race for Mayor in 1989.

The fact that Giuliani is, to say the least, lacking in a competent campaign organization, requires that Rudy consider a talented organization behind him…….and a unified one. That is why if Rudy wants to further his political career he may just have to go with what is being offered and right now, the New York Senate seat is being offered to him by New York Republicans.

Even though Giuliani opposed the election of the state’s new GOP Chairman, Ed Cox, the son-in-law of Richard Nixon, Cox is being smart. He knows that the current Attorney General and son of former popular Governor Mario Cuomo, Andrew Cuomo is likely to be the Democrat nominee for Governor. They are aware that Cuomo may be undefeatable in the existing atmosphere. So the New York GOP is preparing to forego any large investment in the race for Governor. Instead they hope to take back some down ticket races such as State Comptroller and possibly one of the two US Senate seats up for grabs in 2010.

Removing Chuck Schumer may be difficult but defeating novice statewide candidate Gillibrand is not. Not if Rudy is her opponent. So the New York Republican organization is willing to get behind Rudy andoffer them some the organizational talent and support that he lacks. They are also urging Rudy to take them up on the offer.

Whether Giuliani wants to run for President or not, a bid for the senate seat occupied by Gillibrand is a logical option for him if he truly wants to try and provide New York and the nation with his leadership and expertise. Polls show that Rudy can beat Gillibrand in hypothetical match-ups. Such is not the case in the race for Governor, an office actually more suited for the Mussolini in Giuliani.

Rudy is not exactly a “team player” and no matter how “independent” one may proclaim themselves to be, membership in exclusive clubs such as state legislatures, or either branch of Congress, require a certain amount of getting along with other people who each believe they are better than the other and know better than the other.

Rudy is not known for his diplomacy. He is known for getting things on his own setting the agenda. For him to try to work on an agenda not set by him, will take a lot of getting use to on his part. Being a US Senator is a far cry from being a member of the US Senate. Rudy will find that few if any of his colleagues will come to his office to kiss his ring. But if Rudy is sincere and if he really believes that he could offer up a strong voice for New Yorkers, than he should run. But not as a stepping stone for the presidency of the United States.

Fred Dicker and several other sources claim that Rudy has already made the decision to run against Gillibrand for the senate. I am inclined to believe that, but I am not betting on it.

Giuliani is a bit erratic and before he ultimately pulled out of the race for the Republican nomination to the US Senate in 2000, it took him a long time to originally get into the race. He was very apprehensive about running against former First Lady Hillary Clinton. So I don’t think his running for the Senate is a done deal. To add to that doubt, one must consider the words of Tony Carbonetti, a close aide to Giuliani who was once one of his deputy mayors. Carbonetti claims that all we are hearing is just speculation and that if we really want to know what Rudy is doing, wait until Rudy tells you. Carbonetti notes, that the former mayor is not shy and if he decides to run, he will be sure to let us all know about it.

As for me, I am ambivalent.

Rudy was a great mayor and he did a wonderful job in one of the most difficult jobs in America. He turned new York City around in everyway from appearance and economy to education and crime. There is no denying Rudy’s greatness. But I do not know how well his mayoral experience would translate into that same type of extraordinary leadership in the US Senate. I am also not a fan of electing someone simply because they call themselves a Republican. Dede Scozzafava, Arlen Specter, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins come to mind as just a few Republicans who may just as well be Democrats…..Oh wait, Arlen finally came out of the closet and admitted to being one. Anyway, the point is, unless Rudy is really prepared to advance the Republicans principles that make one a Republican and keep us a strong nation, than I will not be going out of my way to lend a hand to a Giuliani campaign for the Senate.

If he were to begin to take a conservative direction and his seat made the difference between taking back control of the Senate, reluctantly, I’ll be there. But until then, I won’t be holding my breath waiting for his official decision or for the turn to the right he still needs to make.

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President Stirs The Pot In New York and Takes Sides In Race For Governor

Bookmark and Share    President Obama spent the day in New York. With a scheduled appearance at opening ceremonies of the United Nations general assembly, the President made the most of his time in the state. He had a scheduled speech on the economy in upstate New York, a private reception, his appearance at the U.N. and finally, President turns on Governoran appearance on the David Letterman Show in the old Ed Sullivan theater.

On Letterman he will continue to make his pitch for government control of health management and care but so far, of most interest is not his appearance on Letterman or his appearance at the U.N.. The most interesting part of the President’s New York field trip hasn’t even been what he said as he delivered a speech on the economy which discussed making investments in education and research. What is most noteworthy on this trip are the telling signs of a President trying to make sure that the wheels don’t fall off his bandwagon as the 2010 midterm elections approach.

After reports that the President wants New York Governor David Paterson to drop efforts to keep his job surfaced on Sunday, signs of that desire revealed itself even more on Monday.

Before delivering his speech in Troy, New York, President Obama began by acknowledging the presence of dignitaries in the audience. He stated, Governor David Paterson is in the house and went on to simply say “he’s a wonderful man”. That statement was quickly followed by the mention of State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s presence. But unlike with Paterson who President Obama called a wonderful man, in referencing Cuomo, the President went into a glowing description of Cuomo which included statements such as “ he is doing great work for the people of New York”.

With Paterson mired in plummeting poll numbers, Andrew Cuomo is seen by the White House as a much better name to head up the Democrat ticket in New York next year. Reports claimed that the President so much as sent that message to Governor Paterson, who when asked if that was true, responded that he has spoken to the White House but will not reveal the details of any private conversations. Paterson did add that he was running for Governor regardless of any speculation.

The fact that the White House would step into a developing intra-party battle for a nomination is not a normal occurrence. Even more unusual here is the fact that David Paterson is one of only two African-American governors in the country. The sensitivities of that fact would normally prompt praise and encouragement, especially for a man who took the reigns of control after a scandal that rocked New York.

The uniqueness of the White House’s attempt to push Paterson out can only be due to fears that the upcoming 2010 midterm elections are going to be devastating to the administration and the Democrat Party nationwide. Not only is there the risk of losing seats in the House of Representatives but there exists a great risk of losing several seats in the U.S. Senate. Most prominent of all being the election to fill out Secretary of State Clinton’s New York Senate seat.

That seat is currently being kept warm by the Kristen Gillibrand, the hand picked choice of Governor Paterson. Her maintaining the seat could be in jeopardy if a Cuomo vs. Paterson primary for governor took place. Such a race could prompt a primary for the Democrat nomination against Gillibrand and her being seen as Paterson’s candidate will not help her win.

Another factor that would come into play if Paterson were to primary Cuomo is race. Many African-Americans could split their support and if Paterson were to lose, there is the risk that many African-American voters would hold Cuomo responsible for that loss and stay at home during the general election. That would severely suppress the vote totals for Democrats in all races for Senate and Congress, thereby allowing viable Republican candidates the chance to pull together higher vote totals than their Democrat opponents.

All of this obviously deeply concerns President Obama. So much so that he is throwing Governor David Paterson under the bus and taking unprecedented steps to stop the hemorrhaging that they expect in 2010.

With no comment from the President on what he did or didn’t tell Governor Paterson, the President’s effusive praise of Cuomo and tepid acknowledgment of David Paterson said much more than his words.

If that was not enough of a sign that the President wants to push Paterson out of office, after his speech on the economy the President held a private reception. Invited to it was Andrew Cuomo. Conveniently not invited was Governor Paterson.

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For Republicans Only: Rebuilding and Reinvigorating the Nation and Party-PART II

Bookmark and Share    In the first part of this series we pointed out that the devastating losses of 2006 and 2008 and the loss of the White House produced a severe shortage of prominent Republican figures on the national stage. reprebrand1Without an individual whom can be that face and without the party putting forth cohesive policy paths, on all levels, the G.O.P. is adrift in a turbulent sea of waves created by a torrent of liberal initiatives.

This situation led us to establish a few things.

First we must get everyone on the same page and identify the problems that face the nation and their causes and then paint a picture of those problems that can be depicted in the form of a common enemy. It was determined that we could easily call that enemy “the government” and show it to be the common antagonist in our lives that all Americans can rally with Republicans against.

We also established that we need a figure who without being a threat to any other Republican’s presidential ambitions, can provide the national voice for the message that the G.O.P. needs to get out.

That person was suggested in Part I, but putting aside exactly who is best suited to be the messenger, let us focus on the message.

Under President Obama, and the Democrat led Congress, it is quite apparent that a significant portion of society is finally beginning to question just how much control they want any American federal government to have over their lives.

This thinking is not new. Such sentiments have been eroding at the popularity of both the Republican and Democrat parties. It also accounts for the fairly significant and deep rooted, loyal base, of national support that Dr. Ron Paul, a Texas congressman has. Even though Ron Paul caucuses with Republicans and runs as one, he is at heart, a libertarian and it is to the libertarian party that we have lost many Republicans.

We must get them back and we can do so if we combat the government enemy by stressing less government, less government fiats upon the people that limit their freedoms, more economic and educational opportunities and more ethical political leaders.

As previously mentioned, this approach, as it was under Ronald Reagan, describes government as the enemy……the common enemy that the G.O.P. can inspire the American people to rally behind in the fight against the enemy.

By making it clear that while we are not proposing that there be no government, we must make it understood that as government is creating more problems than it is solving and spends more than it ever takes in, it must be curbed. It must be reduced in size and scope in order to stop costing the American people more than it is worth and to be effective in those areas which it should and could be effective.

With the government now owning financial institutions, car companies and getting more and more into the business of business, people are becoming increasingly skeptical. This encroaching government control is made even more threatening with the liberal passage of such things as Cap-and-Trade and now socialized medicine. Even senior citizens are beginning to oppose the administrations attempt to control their treatment and coverage in the face of aging and declining health.

All of this will not only begin to deteriorate our national quality of life, it will also start costing more. The more control that government has, the more money it needs to implement and maintain those controls

This message must and can be conveyed in many different ways and in regards to just about every issue that comes up. But in our message, as we unite Americans in combating our “common enemy”, we must also produce alternatives. To gain the peoples trust and recapture the majority in Congress, we must offer policy alternatives that flow from principles. Those principles are the same ones found in the Constitution and they are the principles of freedom. They are also the principles which many former Republicans who are now libertarians have come to realize we are drifting away from with increased speed as everyday passes by.

We must demonstrate that the Democrats are trying to play God by creating a centralized government power structure that overrides state’s rights and individual’s rights and has a hand in every single aspect of our lives.

But before Republicans oppose any action of the President or the Democrat controlled congress, they must have their policy alternative to offer at the same time.

This must be done in such a way that everyone from Republican Governors, and state legislative leaders, members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are all on the same page and speaking the same policy message and theme. To coordinate this, our Republican Senate Leader, Mitch McConnell and our leader of the House, Republican Minority Leader John Boehner must work together. Coordination must also be made with the state Republican organizations and the Republican Governors Association and its mayoral counterparts. The RNC would be the perfect entity for such coordination and through them the RGA, NRSC and NRCC could all be on message and pushing for the same policies. Policies that could be a part of what Republicans could call “The American Agenda”.

In shaping that American Agenda the G.O.P must also politically incorporate other objectives into it.

They must rebrand themselves and capitalize on the displeasure with Democrat overreach, and their corporate welfare and dependency politics. This can be done by showing that the new GOP is smarter, younger and more diverse and more in touch with the founding principles that have to date made America great. In addition to having that one trusted, proven and articulate face of the party conveying our national message, allow the Sarah Palins, Eric Cantors, Bobby Jindals, Aaron Schocks, Michelle Bachmann’s, Cathy McMorris Rodgers‘, John Thunes and a host of other vital young Republicans to be in the forefront. Flood the market with fresh faces that have a clean slate and smart, succinct messages. Then deliver the fresh, smart and forward looking message that will be contained in our “American Agenda”.

That agenda should contemplate the adoption of some policy risks and give thought to making some changes that demonstrate our faith in freedom, attracts young voters and changes the national conversation.

Such can be done by crafting our American Agenda with the following directions:

A). – Consider the legalization of certain drugs :

-Demonstrate that we know that freedom means people have a right to do what they like with their bodies whether it is good or bad so long as it does not take the lives of others or infringe on the rights of others.

B). – Support Domestic Unions :

-Shake everything up and get the state out of the marriage business by allowing churches, mosques and temples to marry those they choose. That is the business of their God, not the federal government.  At the same time, do not seek to have government redefine marriage.  Allow the government to preserve the religious sanctity of marriage while also preserving its constitutional civic responsibilities and perform Domestic Unions that ensure that people who unite contractually are treated equally before the law, as the Constitution requires.

Aside from “shaking things up”, we must  address healthcare and present a renewed commitment on some of those issues the party is traditionally strongest on and implement policy solutions that demonstrate our convictions to our nations Constitution.

An approach to the issue of healthcare should be one that is not based on the failed socialist policy initiatives that our nation has shunned and fought against. That would lead us to adopt some of , but not the only, following constitutionally driven approaches into our “American Agenda”.

C). – HealthCare Opportunities :

-Offer the type of “change” in healthcare that we can live with and have the federal government adjust what it can and should change on the issue. For instance (1) .-Tort Reform.   It will have a drastic effect on the rising cost of healthcare in America. (2).- Portability. The current lack of portability prevents people from keeping their coverage when they change jobs or relocate and often they can not continue with the same coverage they have throughout their lives as other changes in their lives occur. Federal action that would allow for the portability of health insurance would solve this problem and help to stabilize insurance markets, reduce costs and ultimately reduce the fluctuating number of uninsured in America.  ( 3). – Enact a policy toolbox of federal initiatives that states could include and federal funding to the states would be linked to success in reaching the goals. With federal legislative guidelines and financial support, state experimentation would produce a myriad of various solutions and in time the best solutions for each state will evolve into better and stronger healthcare availability options for all states. (4).- Incentivise good health and fitness by offering limited tax credits for gym memberships and fitness equipment.

On those issues that the G.O.P has consistently been strong on, the new “American Agenda” must reinforce those strengths with the following items:

D). – Means-test Everything :

-If any federal social programs are to exist, they must be designed to help those whom are truly needy. Government welfare programs like Medicare for the rich are unreasonable and unacceptable ands we need to make that clear. For those who will rightfully point out that constitutional grounds for any “federal social programs”, are at the very least questionable, they must understand the need for compromises that can help begin to change attitudes and minds. This is one such compromise. If we are to have such programs they must not be abused or overextended.

E). – Taxpayer Bill of Rights & Balanced Budget :

-After the current massive expansion and growth of government by Democrats, people will want government to shrink. By creating a Taxpayer Bill of Rights that will lock government revenues in at population plus inflation as measured by acceptable cost of living indices we can assure people that we will be at the very least stop government from growing. Then add limits on national debt that would force cuts and stop passing the national credit card and its bill to future generations.

F). – Environmental Security not Global Warming: “More Obvious Conservation Methods, Not More Taxes” :

-Call it environmental security and dedicate ourselves to protecting and preserving our environment by funding such things as geo-engineering and sequestration technology but not by sucking the finances of the American people during times of economic hardship for an Al Gore hypothesis that can only be conclusively proven through the evidence produced by the passage of another million years. The G.O.P. must highlight the undeniable, rational pro-environment record that we have extending as far back as Theodore Roosevelt and we must get in the forefront of the issue by demonstrating that the historic Cap-and-Trade measure adopted by liberals is more than irrational, it is dangerous, ineffective and another example of overreaching control that taxes us on air while destroying the long-term health of our economy and individual’s economic prosperity.

G). – Enforce Our Fundamental Belief In National Sovereignty and Freedom :

-The administrations “globalization” policy is a threat to us on many levels. It puts our security, sovereignty, economy and national heritage at risk. We must therefore (1). – Implement an Open Arms-Secure Borders Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill that welcomes and protects legal immigrants, secures our borders and eliminates the tolerance for illegal immigrants who weigh heavily on our law enforcement capabilities, emergency services and economic prosperity. (2). – Declare our united support for an English First, Not English Only Bill. (3).- Make it clear that our government will not excuse, or make excuses for, those enemies of freedom who hinder progress in areas of our interests or seek to inflict harm on us or our allies. The electorate must be clear on the fact that Republicans do not buy in to the Democrat approach to foreign policy which leads us to believe that Americans should feel guilty for defending our nation, the cause of freedom or our national sovereignty, heritage or interests. (4).- Seek to curtail the use of Eminent Domain abuses by eliminating federal funding for any state or municipal projects that use eminent domain to acquire land.  It must be made clear that the constitutional right to property cannot be abrdged.

H). – Energy Independence :

-The government must take advantage of all available sound domestic energy sources while promoting the independent study of advanced uses for clean, renewable energy technologies.

I). – Reform How Government Does Business And Limit Election Spending

-Demonstrate that we not only acknowledge the political culture of corruption and shady tactics but that we stand against it with reforms to prevent it. (1).- Eliminate the public financing option for federal elections. Make it clear that we do not want taxpayers spending money for politicians to lie us in attempt to get our vote. (2.) – At the same time, place a spending limit on all elections for all federal offices. (3.)- Adopt the Enumerated Powers Act which forces all legislative initiatives and federal spending to be supported by the clause in the Constitution that proves it to be a proper measure for the federal government to undertake. (4.) – Pass a bill drafting amendment that prohibits spending measures and regulations that are unrelated to that bill from being tacked on to it.

The Republican Party needs to rebuild itself with an agenda that includes of all the above points.

If it can get everyone on the same page, rebrand itself with fresh faces and trustworthy policy directions and a unified message in 2010 then they can at the very least make inroads to a strong eventual comeback.

With the right people, policies and message we can demonstrate that by trying to be like European nations with unfunded liabilities and the bureaucratization of everything we may actually become like them and spend decades enduring 10 percent unemployment rates and trying to maintain our national identity. We must use our policies and messages to capitalize on the dissatisfaction that Democrats are creating and demonstrate that raising taxes and spending other people’s money is not the best way for our country to go.

Now is the time for us to offer up a second revolution that is made up with ideas that puts an end to bureaucratic governmental licentiousness and unleash entrepreneurship all while offering leadership with a view towards freedom, pragmatism and common sense, all of which the left has abandoned.

But as is the case with any good strategy, its success lies in its implementation and the methods and tactics needed to see it through. In the next part of this series we will address those plans and reveal the logistics needed to grow the seeds of a political revolution to restore freedom to the freest people the world has ever known.

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For Republicans Only: A plan for rebuilding and reinvigorating a down and out party.

Bookmark and Share     It may seem a shame or insincere to have to be political and develop political strategies to get anything done in American politics. But when you plunge into the sea of politics you better be willing to swim. This does not mean that repboatayou can’t be sincere about the issues and their effects on the American people but it does mean that if your gonna swim with the sharks you’d be wise to put on your flippers instead of your running shoes. And that is what this article deals with. It is meant to discuss the political reality behind the Republican Party’s ability to get back into the game and the tools and the political strategies it must utilize to lead again.

As we look ahead you do not have to be a rocket scientist to see that the G.O.P. cannot afford a third consecutive election cycle where they lose another 20 or more seats in congress or any more governorships or state legislative chambers. To do so in 2010 will be lethal.

That is when the census takes place and redistricting begins. By losing more congressional seats we will be making it that much harder to reach a majority in 2012. And to lose any more sway in the states will mean that Democrats will have the opportunity to gerrymander Republicans into minority status for a decade or more.

So Republicans can’t wait for the presidential election of 2012 to help them increase their numbers. They must make their gains now and 2010.

In 2009 it looks like Republicans will do well and pick up Governors in New Jersey and Virginia. But for 2010, the G.O.P. needs to get on message and into gear now.

But how do we expect to make a significant run towards majority status when we will be needing it most in 2010?

Sadly, I do not see signs of a national Republican strategy and message shaping up. After supporting Ken Blackwell for

Mike Steele

Mike Steele

 RNC Chairman, I am not privy to the leaderships plans but from the outside I see no movement in the direction that we must take.

We could just sit back and allow the Democrats to get comfortable. That is how the G.O.P. lost control of things in the first place. After the first four years in control of both congress and the White House, complacency and the lack of a need to get the power that they had, allowed many to stop keeping their noses clean and to cease going that extra mile to make our case.

The same fate will eventually come of the current liberal ruling regime in Washington, D.C..

To a degree, Democrats understand this and that is why they are rushing , at a breakneck pace, to consolidate their power immediately by entrenching some of the most expansive and extensive socialized programs we have ever seen into government. They want to do so before the tide turns on them.

But to regain control of congress essentially by default will not make for a meaningful reason for Republicans to be in control or for an enduring leadership role that will last for any significant length of time.

So what are Republicans to do?

For that answer we should look back to a similar time. A time when Republicans were down and out. It was 1980 and much like now, we had a President who on the national stage spoke softly and carried a very small stick. He was a President who also saw government as the solution to all our problems but had policies which essentially drained every dime out of the American economy and made it so that the government and its people could not afford to do anything about anything.

To counter the Democrats and the “days of malaise” that they had us in, the G.O.P. revamped their image in the eyes of the people and became the innovative and anti-establishment, anti-government party. And they did so by presenting easily understood alternative solutions to those being bandied about by the left. They were also able to focus a spotlight on a common enemy that most Americans related to. This common enemy became something to rally against with Republicans.

Common enemies are a very powerful source of unity and support.

President George H.W. Bush spent the first four and a half years of his eight years in office riding a wave of support because terrorists proved themselves to be an undeniably severe threat to Americans and therefore a common enemy to rally against. This was not some political creation. It was a national reality and while terrorists still remain a collective concern, the lack of thousands of Americans falling victim to them again all at once, has made them a less powerful rallying cry these days but hopefully not any less of a concern.

arepleader10In the 80’s, the Reagan Revolution successfully united a majority of Americans by condensing all the problems that we were facing into a different enemy. Reagan successfully defined government as the enemy. And who was in total control of government? The Democrats.

This theme, this rallying cry, allowed Americans to see that government was not the solution, it was the problem. Over time, the approach increased Republican numbers at every level. From city councils, to state legislatures and governors mansions, slowly but surely, Republicans increased in numbers until a clear majority of state houses and state executive offices were dominated by Republican majorities.

But this message was not just meant for the purpose of having majority control. It was also meant to make a beneficial difference. It was meant to use that power to reduce the size and scope of the government enemy. To reduce government’s tax burden on the people. To eliminate the barriers to economic growth, job opportunities and entrepreneurial expansion. It was also used to rebuild our military capabilities and restore America’s role on the international stage. Defeating the communist enemy was another reason.

With Republican control came the change America needed and that is exactly what the G.O.P. must demonstrate to Americans again. We must convince them that we are currently headed down a road that our nation once ran away from. The road that was plotted for our nation under Jimmy Carter whose increased regulations, increased taxation and government interference created both a deficit of personal economic empowerment and of national morale.

That same Carter-like approach to our federal government is taking place today under President Obama. And at a time when we are again experiencing tough economic times, the liberal tax and spend approach is again making things tougher for all of us.

This case must be made to the people but it cannot be effectively made with an algebraic equation or Ross Perot bar graph. It must be made through a concise, everyday translation that everyone can relate to.

In 1980, during one presidential debate, Ronald Reagan discussed the historic and disastrous inflation rate that the Carter administration brought to bear on us. He spoke of a little girl who when shopping with her mother saw a doll that she fell in love with and desperately wanted. She pleaded with her mother to buy it for her but her mother told her that she had to earn it and with her allowance she must save for it. The former Governor and soon to be President continued to explain that the little girl saved her money until finally she had enough to buy it. But when she went back to the store, the price had increased and she did not have enough money after all. So, disappointed, she went back home hoping to save enough money to buy it the following week. When that next week came, she went back to the store with enough to cover the new purchase price only to discover that the price of that same doll went up again. Reagan described how this disappointing cycle repeated itself for a month and he further explained that this was the effect of inflation and the misery index which was created during the Carter years.

He stated that this was the result of the economic condition that we got ourselves into under the Carter administration and that as hard as we tried to keep our heads above water, the rushing tide of rising costs was a never ending cycle that kept on putting everything out of our reach and like that little girl whose so desired doll was always out of reach because of inflation, so too was the American dream becoming out of reach for all individual Americans.

Reagan helped people to relate to our troubles by encapsulating all of our nation’s problems down to the face of an innocent little girl. And in doing so he made Americans believe that he understood them and their problems.

It allowed him to capture the hearts, minds and votes of the American people.

This is the approach that we again need. Republicans must reconnect and demonstrate that they relate to those not in the political class.

But who is to be the messenger and where are the innovative approaches to come from?

Eric Cantor

Eric Cantor

In looking for such a person we can easily see that the House of Representatives is hardly a place where such a face of national stature can be easily be created. The few promising figures in congress who have the innovative minds and anti-establishment mentality that we need must rise to a higher level of prominence before they have a realistic shot at being the right national messenger. Congressmen like Eric Cantor of Ohio, Mike Pence of Indiana and Paul Ryan of Wisconsin are perfect examples of the type of capable, competent leaders we need. But until they are in a position of greater power and prominence like that of a Governor or Senator, there is little chance for them to command the amount of attention that they need to effectively and properly deliver a nationally captivating message

Mike Pence

Mike Pence

For Cantor, Ryan and Pence, the G.O.P. would be wise to start making room for them as Senators or Governors in the coming years. But that still wont fill the void we have right now.

In looking at the United States Senate, prospects there are thin.

Of the forty Republicans remaining, few have the persona, gravitas and ability to capture the nation’s imagination and trust. McCain is over and was over even before he ran for President. The Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, lacks any significant attraction in speech or persona and ideas.

Judd Gregg

Judd Gregg

Among the most promising, somewhat conservative figures, whose personalities and abilities can fit the bill, are possibly Bob Corker of Tennessee but more likely Judd Gregg of New Hampshire and John Thune of South Dakota. Both of these men are consistently strong, sound voices that could emerge as potential standard bearers in 2012 and they could start carrying the banner now by coalescing the party together under the type of “get government out the way” policy alternatives that we could make a message out of.

Gregg though seems always prepared to hang up his hat and return to a quiet life of retirement in the hills and mountains of New Hampshire.

So that leaves Senator John Thune.

He is young, the youngest of them all and I have always appreciated him. In his first run for the Senate, he lost by almost 500 votes that were illegally obtained for incumbent Senator Tim Johnson through a Democrat scheme that involved cash for votes and falsified registrations from two South Dakota Indian registrations.

John Thune

John Thune

But two years later, Thune made history when he defeated the Senate’s Democrat leader Tom Daschle.

Since then, Thune has been a relatively strong conservative influence and he has command of the issues, an energetic and confident charisma and clean record.

After sifting through the ranks of federal office holders, the only other obvious place to find the leader we need is from within the ranks of state leadership.

The governors.

It is here where we also find the most innovative and beneficial ideas in government.

The majority of Republican governors are handling things far better than most Democrat governors like those in New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Pennsylvania,

Donald Carcierie

Donald Carcieri

 Ohio, Washington and others. But here too, the right captivating figure is hard to find out of the 22 existing Republican governors.

Mark Sanford was a promising option. His potential was not for any command of communication skills, which he lacked, but because of actual strong policy positions and administrative qualities. That was of course all before he ran off to Argentina and abandoned his state and family for a romp with his “soul mate”.

Donald Carcieri happens to be the most unique of all governors.

He is the Republican governor of Rhode Island, one of, if not the most, liberal states in the most liberal region of the nation, New England.

What makes him most unique there is the fact that he is actually a centrist with a propensity towards conservative positions. He is often in opposition to his Democrat dominated state legislature on such things as the obligations of state workers, separation of powers and illegal immigration. He has even vetoed more than 30 pieces of legislation that they have presented to him. Yet he has still been elected twice.

But we are talking Rhode Island here and Carcieri lacks any great innovative leadership qualities and national appeal.

Haley Barbour

Haley Barbour

I would hope to see Carcieri eventually take one of the two Democrat U.S. Senate seats, like Sheldon Whitehouse’s seat, but I hardly expect him to capture the national imagination.

Of those remaining, the brightest gubernatorial lights are those of Louisiana’s Boby Jindal, Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty, Mississippi’s Haley Barbour, and the best of all of them, Mitch Daniels of Indiana.

Daniels won reelection to a second term as governor by as much as 60% while at the same time, Indiana voters elected Barack Obama for President. In some cases he even got 20% of the African-American vote. That is an unusually high percentage for any Republican anywhere. He clearly has crossover appeal.

He can also be an inspiring speaker who conveys his message with conviction and in a way that makes people trusting of him and confident in him. As a conservative he has refrained from the wholesale selling out of the ideals that many in the G.O.P. have done over the past five or so years. Just one example can be demonstrated by the size of Indiana’s government.

While governments in most other states has increased in size, Mitch Daniels has shrunk both the size and cost of government. Currently the state has about 30,000 public employees. That is the smallest number of state employees since 1983.

Another area of distinction for him is in the area of government budgets.

When first coming into office Indiana had an $800 million deficit but Daniels turned it into a surplus of $1.3 billion. Much of this was helped by his reducing the growth rate of state spending from 5.9 percent to 2.8 percent.

The only problem is that Mitch Daniels has stated that he will not ever run for president. That puts a damper on national hopes for him but they have also been the same words uttered by a few people who are now former presidents

Bobby Jindal

Bobby Jindal

As for Jindal his record in Congress proves him to be an ideally strong conservative. On issues like abortion, immigration, national security, healthcare, energy, education and on just about every other issues he is right where the right wants a leader to be.

As Louisiana‘s Governor he has maintained his conservative credentials and even reigned in Louisiana‘s state budget problems.

On the downside, Jindal has only been in office since 2007 and during that time, his first, and to date, only appearance on the national stage was a response to President Obama’s State of the Union. In it, Governor Jindal put forward the right message but its delivery fell flat and received rapid fire shots aimed at claiming he was done.

Such is not the case but even Bobby Jindal has admitted that he is a little green and needs more seasoning.

That leaves Minnesota’s Tim Pawlenty and Mississippi’s Haley Barbour open for discussion.

Tim Paelenty

Tim Paelenty

Both of these men have produced for their states and both of them are more qualified than President Obama was when he was elected President of the United States.

In Pawlenty we have a strong messenger and practitioner of what he himself has termed, Sam’s Club Republicanism, a combination of social conservatism with working family economic appeal.

He has governed well, put spending under control and geared state government more towards that which it should be dealing with such as responsible infrastructure planning, maintenance and construction.

If Pawlenty can raise money and attract some of the top tier consultants which Mitt Romney has already attracted to his camp. And if he can raise enough money to insure that his campaign for the presidential nomination is not under funded, thaen Pawlenty’s record, populist approach and appeal could be quite successful. But to get to that point, he should really start reaching for more national exposure now.

He should start interpreting his alternative policies to the Obama administration and allow himself to become the natural face of the G.O.P.. In him is the ability to not only shape the message that we as a party need to get out but he also has the ability to shape the policies that we can center that message around. If Tim Pawlenty were to take the lead now on issues like healthcare, taxes, the bailout, energy and job growth, many others will line up behind him as they begin to see that Pawlenty is the figure who can part the seas for the rest of them.

The same applies to Haley Barbour of Mississippi.

He has a folksy, “get’er done” way about himself and an appealing record of accomplishment for his state on budgetary control.

Before, during and after the ravaging of the Gulf Coast by Hurricane Katrina, Barbour effectively prepared his state for it and efficiently dealt with its aftermath. Louisiana was the only state to be hit as hard or harder by Hurricane Katrina and in Louisiana’s case it was prepared for and handled so horrifically that its Governor, Kathleen Blanco was practically forced out of office and ultimately rejected even for consideration to a second term in office.

Both Pawlenty and Barbour have the perfect opportunity to step up and become the leader and messenger that we need. Both of them have the unique ability to convincingly demonstrate to Americans that with the right policy direction, rather than being in our way, government can get out of our way and be an effective tool for insuring opportunity, independence and an enduring quality of life with economic freedom and growth.

Mitch Daniels has the ability to do so too and probably better than any of them………….if he wanted to.

Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush

Of course three, now former governor’s have this same ability and opportunity. Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney and dare I say it, Jeb Bush of Florida.

Jeb has put off any attempts for the White House for now. After two Bush’s in the Oval Office over the course of sixteen years, the obvious notion that the nation is Bushed out is a pretty safe bet.

As the most conservative member of the Bush family to have served in office, Jeb has been a truly effective leader and one that Floridians would have never let go if they had the chance to reelect.

Palin has promise but after resigning from office early she also now has problems. None of which can’t be overcome. Her chances to be the national face and voice of the party is fifty-fifty, much like her standing among Americans. They either love her or hate her.

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

Now out of office, Palin must walk a very careful line that seeks to diffuse those that hate her and broaden the numbers of those who love her. She will also have to make sure that she is taken seriously at all times. There will be no room for her to flub on any issue and while using her appealing folksy ways, she must convey a command of the issues and demonstrate a breadth of knowledge and competence that can in no way be denied by anyone who hears her. If she can deliver her small government, Washington outsider, equal opportunity, freedom based policy messages, she could out shop Tim Pawlenty when it comes to being a Sam’s Club Republican.

The largest elephant in the room though is Mitt Romney.

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney

He is definitely running for President and he is by all measures the current frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012.

In addition to being a successful businessman in his own right, Romney is also a managerial genius. He took the once derailed, scandal ridden, over budget and chaotic build up of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics and turned it into a smooth running, ethical and profitable display of organizational perfection.

Beyond that credit is Romney’s term as Governor in a liberal state that is called home by such liberal giants as Michael Dukakis, John Kerry, Barney Frank and Ted Kennedy. The liberal bastion of Massachusetts is no place for a conservative Republican to sprout out from but Romney played politics and outmaneuvered his Democrat opponent.

However; in doing so Mitt created a few problems.

A now long past conversion from pro-abortion rights to pro-life has left many right-to-lifers wondering if he is sincere on the issue. Why right-to-lifers find it hard to believe that someone would agree with them after witnessing a personal family struggle with the issue, itself is hard to understand. But so be it.

On gay rights, previous statements made when Mitt ran against Ted Kennedy for the U.S. Senate and in his actions as Governor during Massachusetts first in the nation “Gay Marriage” fight have critics claiming that on that issue, Romney experienced another political conversion.

The two issues together give Romney naysayers the opportunity to call him a flip-flopper.

But that charge only adds height to Mitt’s biggest hurdle. Obamacare.

As Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was a central figure in the creation of a state run healthcare program that made the purchase of health insurance by state residents mandatory. The concept was based on the principle that if everyone was covered, healthcare costs would be less expensive. The problem is that such a law of supply and demand doesn’t reconcile when a government bureaucracy is over seeing it.

It would be easy to suggest that Romney did the best he could with a liberal state and an overwhelmingly liberal dominated state legislature and that is true to an extent. However Mitt’s fingerprints are allover this one and to make matters worse he was the first governor to implement a plan of this type anywhere. The episode does make the case for the federal government to avoid the creation of a socialized healthcare program. It also makes a case for allowing experimentation within each individual state until an efficient model is found and emulated by all the states. But when it comes to Massachusetts, this episode proves that socialized medicine is not the way to go and for Romney the problem now is that it was his plan which demonstrated why it is not the way to go.

There are other factors involved though.

The state legislature and Romney’s successor, Governor Deval Patrick did tinker with the original program. They tinkered with it a lot and many of the healthcare reforms made in the original plan have changed from what Romney had influenced. Nevertheless the issue is Romney’s to defend against and explain. It exposes his Achilles heal in any 2012.

Romney’s best defense against possible Republican opponents who were or are governors would probably be “I tried and it failed and I learn from mistakes, whereas my fellow governors up here never even tried to make healthcare more accessible and affordable.”

This assessments of Republican leadership prospects leaves us with the following conclusion.

As it looks now, the most likely and promising of likely individuals to choose from will be a field that consists of Mitt Romney, Sarah Palin, Tim Pawlenty, Haley Barbour and John Thune.

Others will run and some from the above mentioned group may not. But if the six that I bring up were to be the field of candidates for the Republican nomination, it would indeed be a hotly contested race that will also undoubtedly inject a great many substantial policy models and directions that will help to fuel the conservative movement.

But that isn’t till 2012.

What will become of 2010?

Short of any of the possibly convincing figures discussed being ballsy enough to attempt to become our national voice right now, as it currently stands, there is no one person who can do it while also having the ability to enjoin all of the party leadership including the senate and house in a national strategy.

Newt Gingrich

Newt Gingrich

Someone needs to be able to bring all levels of leadership together and get them all on the same page to push one strategy.

It must be a strategy similar to Newt Gingrich’s “Contract With America”.

Critics can malign the “Contract With America” all they want but it worked.

After forty years in the wilderness, Newt Gingrich, along with the help of a faltering Clinton administration, brought Republicans in to the majority in the house. And the new generation that came into power with that “Contract” actually adhered to it, at least for as long as Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House.

As for who can be both the voice of the party and the unifying force for a national Republican strategy, politics being

Mitch Daniels

Mitch Daniels

 what it is will prohibit everyone from getting behind any potential Republican candidate for President. Each camp and their supporters will not permit any one of them to get the attention and credit for bringing us back.

So this role must be played by a neutral party. It must be someone who is not going to run for President in 2012 and who will not put the momentum of the popularity that will come with this role behind any potential nominee until they have won the nomination.

This person must also have the persona we need to effectively be a persuasive point man. They must be respected with a proven record and untarnished by any of the negative stereotypes that the left can easily pin on Republicans.

All of this points to one man. One man who, if he really means what he says, fits all of the qualities that are required for becoming the coalescing figure that wont be a threat to any single Republican’s presidential ambitions or be a threat to any senate or house leaders power over their Republican conference.

That person is Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels.

If he truly has no desire to run for President, he is the person that can help Republicans deliver a national message which counters the overspending, over controlling liberal government enemy.

With him as the face of the party that delivers a Reagan-like message dealing with the Republican alternatives to the Obama-Pelosi-Reid agenda, the party can rebuild and have a shot at winning more seats instead of losing more seats in 2010.

The stars would be aligned perfectly if Republican National Chairman Mike Steele could get representatives of the Republican Governors Association and of the house and senate together and onboard, hammer out what could be generally be called “The American Agenda” and let Mitch Daniels be the national point man for it.

This would allow for the type of cohesive leadership plan that, with accurate precision, can get Republicans back on message and working together while the message is being delivered loud and clear through what would be a voice from the heartland. A governor’s voice. One with crossover appeal who has been an effective leader with a proven record, cut state budgets, reduced the size and scope of government, practiced a true commitment to both family and conservative values and whom, if he seriously will not run for President himself, is no threat to any other potential candidate. Daniels is the best man for the job and one of the only people who could do that job as well and as convincingly as him.

With whom that messenger should be established, in Part II, we will deal with exactly what that message must be and the Republican organizational plan to deliver and implement it.

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The Political Landscape Is About To Change

Bookmark and Share    In 2010 a political earthquake will take place.

RepublicanRevolutionaries

It will not be akin to the magnitude of an 8.0 on the Richter scale but the political landscape will shift and it will not be to the left. This transference will probably be to an extent that will set the stage for a soon to come political U-turn away from the direction our nation is now going in.

Midterms elections almost always produce a backlash against the party in national control and as such in 2010, Democrats stand on ground zero, right at the epicenter of a political tremor that is about to make the land slide out from under their feet.

Liberals may not agree with trickle down economics but they can’t deny the trickle down effects of midterm elections and, after only seven or so months in control, the effects of their ultra-liberal leadership has already surpassed expectations with record levels of spending, deficits, taxes and regulations.

Their promotion of a second and now possibly third “stimulus package” has done little more than give the White House the opportunity to say that, at its best, the historic federal spending bill has helped to make things not as bad as they could be. That claim in and of itself is false, yet despite that far from glowing admission, Washington essentially borrowed nearly $10,000 from every American household to create jobs that have yet to materialize while at the same time the unemployment rate continues to exceed expectations as it soars to distressing heights.

On other fronts, President Obama has been on several foreign tours of apology to the world for our being the greatest hope of freedom the world has ever known and at home, under his orders, his uber-liberal underlings, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid have been hard at work trying to tax the air that we breathe with an ill conceived Cap-and-Tax bill and now a horrifically rushed measure to socialize medical care in America.

These highlights along with other areas such as slashes in our missile defense systems just as North Korea builds missiles that can hit American soil and as Iran kicks its nuclear ambitions and rocketry muscle into high gear, have all helped to lead 61% of all Americans to conclude that America is on the wrong track. In that same poll, a Rasmussen poll, 46% of the population disapproves of the President’s job performance and while 86% believe that the economy is the most important issue of the day, only 30% trust President Obama’s handling of the economy.

All of this indicates a boom and bust cycle for Democrats that is about to cause the political quake of 2010 and ultimately change the political landscape of Washington, D.C. and the direction of our nation .

The realization of just how antithetical contemporary liberalism is to the founding principles of our nation is slowly but surely beginning to settle in to the American psyche.

People who have never before been inclined to pick up a sign and protest in the streets are being inspired to do so today as it becomes clearer and clearer to them that the rights they have taken for granted for too long are being eroded at an unprecedented rate.

The result is not only a realization that the “change” the Democrat’s messiah, President Obama, offered is not exactly the holy grail that many had sought, it is also making many fear the results of the changes that are being made to the very fabric of our American society.

That realization is responsible for the reemergence of the type of conservative ideological vehemence and determination that helped bring Republicans to control of the House of Representatives for the first time in forty years in 1994. In fact the forces of true conservatism were so powerful at the time that, at that same time, the GOP also wrested control of the Senate and after two years in office, the White House press corps was forced to ask President Clinton if his administration was relevant anymore.

Today the signs of outright rage over years of encroachments on individual rights and personal wealth is at such a boiling point that even the establishment of the Republican Party is about to be purged.

Years of runaway spending and a political culture of corruption that both parties have participated in are inspiring a new generation of conservative leaders to challenge the status of quo of the G.O.P..

In Florida, the once promising governor, Charlie Crist has declared that he will run for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination to replace retiring and inconsequential Republican Senator Mel Martinez.

As governor, Crist has fallen far short of his predecessor, Governor Jeb Bush. He has proven himself to be a pseudo conservative and generic politician. He is far from being fiscally conservative, has endorsed all of President Obama’s bailout proposals and he has never taken a stand for state sovereignty over the encroachment of the federal government.

In other words he is simply a career politician with his finger in the wind as he tries to sail with the tide of beltway politics.

So in comes Marco Rubio to challenge Crist for the nomination.

Marco Rubio is a young energetic man of Cuban immigrants who has served in the Florida state legislature and even at his young age rose to become the Speaker of The Florida House of Representatives. He is also a true believer in the principles that should make one a problem.

Rubio acknowledges that his state’s incumbent Governor has the inside track to the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate but outspent and outmanned Rubio is undaunted in his challenge to Crist for the nomination. His reasons are simple and in his own words he explains that he believes……. “that our country is at the proverbial crossroads and that our future will depend on which path that we choose. Some believe that the path to security and prosperity is a larger involvement of government in our economy, that what we need is a government that spends more money and uses the tax system to distribute wealth and pick winners and losers. That is the view of some of our fellow Americans and it is the view of the folks who are in charge today of Washington, D.C.. But the majority of us don’t agree with that view and we deserve a voice in American politics. And that’s why I want to serve in the United states Senate. Because I want to be a part of offering an alternative.”

Rubio is inspired to represent something more than himself. That is why instead of waiting to win the favor of Florida’s Republican political establishment he is challenging its leader, Charlie Crist.

The outright anger with the current state of affairs in America spans the nation and as the atmosphere of discontent compels conservatives to challenge the establishment in Florida we head north to Ohio where conservative John Kasich has cast his hook, line and sinker into the sea of discontent as he seeks the Republican nomination for Governor in 2010.

Kasich is a former congressman, one of the leading members of the Republican Revolution which took control of Congress in 1994.

After handily winning reelection to several terms, Kasich remained true to the conservative agenda that propelled him into office in the first place and rejected the notion of making his place in Congress a lifetime job. But after several years in the private sector the condition of his state and nation has forced him back into the political arena as he seeks to bring the same sense of fiscal responsibility and conservative activism that he brought to Congress, to his state.

“Let people have their power back and run America from the bottom up.“ Power flows from the individual to the government, not the other way around. The individual is paramount in our society. There should be no individual to lord over other groups of people. Individuals ought to be in charge. We ought to get back to the days when we ran this country from the bottom up” says Kasich.

And with that sentiment John Kasich will likely become one of the most influential, leading conservative Governor’s come 2011.

Heading West Chuck Kozak is another example of the renegade Republican forces that are emerging to challenge the status quo of politics and the G.O.P…

As political novice, Kozak enters the race for U.S. Senate in Nevada. This family man, veteran, volunteer, outdoorsman and highly honored attorney will be taking on none other than one of the three leading liberal faces of government, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Kozak seeks to restore a sense of Federalism to our nation by returning the 85 means tested federal welfare programs that remain, back to the states, and give each state the ability to establish an entirely new safety net system based on work instead of handouts. He also sponsors an optional 15% flat income tax, that gives taxpayers the opportunity to choose either that flat tax or the deductions and credits of the current system and he strives for a 20% reduction in the capital gains tax.

Also on his agenda is a focus on a reliance of the free the marketplace to produce new energy, while still using existing sources such as oil, natural gas, coal and nuclear power, as well as the newer alternative energy sources such as wind and solar in order to assure a reliable, low cost energy supply to boost the economy.

This powerful innovative, conservative, constitutional, freedom based agenda is in sharp contrast to the ever emerging liberal, government controlled, socialistic list of plans that Kozak’s opponent, Harry Reid, is responsible for putting on the legislative docket and promoting.

In Pennsylvania the opportunistic, old guard, career politician Arlen Specter who spent his life masquerading as a Republican will be trying to convince Democrats that he’s as liberal as President Obama. His Arnoldian move has opened the door for Republican rebel Pat Toomey to accept the GOP mantle and carry a conservative agenda as powerful as Chuck Kozak’s over the finish line and finally put Specter’s games to rest.

Allover the nation, a new breed of conservative constitutionalists who understand what the Republican Party is suppose to stand for and are ashamed by the old guard’s retreat from that stand, are stepping forward to slowly but surely push aside the Republican leaders who have lost their steam and taken on a practice of political expediency that promotes their grasp on power more than the cause they should be using their power to advance.

In New Jersey conservatives are preparing to challenge the five Cap-and-Trade Republicans who sided with President Obama and House Speaker Pelosi on the issue of taxing the air that we breathe with the greatest transfer of wealth known to man. Those challenges include one to the Dean of New Jersey’s congressional delegation, Republican Representative Chris Smith.

In California where, next year, a fiscally responsibly, innovative Republican in the form of Ebay C.E.O. Meg Whitman, is likely to become Governor and also whisk Republicans in to control of one of their two legislative chambers.

Also in California, Chuck Devore, a state senator, has been slicing and dicing the demonically liberal and outstandingly obnoxious Barabara Boxer as he prepares to challenge her for the U.S. Senate in 2010.

Devore’s outspoken and aggressive attacks on Boxer are proven more and more deserving as she uses Capital Hill as a stage for grandstanding and dressing down members of the military and anyone who is not as rabidly partisan to the radical liberalism that she subscribes to.

One of his strongest issues is a plan to get dollars flowing into California’s coffers without soaking average state taxpayers. He is calling for an aggressive off-shore oil drilling program that would gain access to 9 billion barrels of oil waiting to be tapped into off of California’s coast waters.

Some of the challenges to the establishment of the Republican Party will not be the only reason for new life and new successes for the party. Some Republican victories in many areas will simply come by default as they win not because of themselves but because of the undeniably devastating performances of the Democrats that they will be running against.

Such will likely be the case this year in New Jersey where the race for Governor will probably be won by the guy who has screwed things up least. In this situation that would be Republican nominee, former U.S. Attorney, Chris Christie.

Christie is nothing special and leaves a lot to be desired but incumbent Democrat Jon Corzine has been a disgrace. With no accomplishments to run on, Corzine’s campaign has one issue that he is going with. It is the fact that he is of the same party as President Barack Obama. But without Obama on the ballot, that campaign issue will ultimately fall flat on the ears of voters who have been punished by Corzine with one of the worst economies in the nation and the greatest tax burden in the nation. That all amounts to a Republican win by default.

In New York where Governor David Paterson has led the state into dire straits and Democrat control of the state legislature has led to a point of chaos and confusion that has stalled legislative actions on everything, Republicans are on the verge of taking back at least one chamber of the state legislature and could have a potential Republican Governor in the form of conservative Congressman Peter King of Long Island. That is a long shot though. There is a better chance that former Governor George Pataki will run again or there is always the possibility of Rudy Giuliani entering the picture. Neither of those two would honor the conservative revolution that the state needs but both would be better than David Paterson or Andrew Cuomo if   he challenges Paterson for the nomination and beats him.

In Michigan the devastating ruin that liberal Governor Jennifer Granholm made of the state will usher in some much needed changes there too. And they will be quite the opposite to the change that President Obama is currently creating.

All together, the cumulative effects of all these pending races demonstrates that 2010 is shaping up to be the precipice of a pivotal political period. On that precipice are the fronts of two battles which are brewing at this very moment.

One battle is for the restoration of a Republican Party that realizes its roots and begins to once again represent its grass root followers. In this battle the Marco Rubio’s who represent the new breed of traditional conservative Republicans will fight the stagnant and unproductive old guard members of the party………the ones that produced the moderate and almost apologetic Republican candidacy of John McCain for President. The part of the party that has forgotten the principles and responsibilities that led to the Republican Revolution of 1994.

The second front will be the fight against incumbent liberal powerbrokers who now control government on the state and federal level because of those Republicans who strayed away from the principles they vowed to advance. On this front, the John Kasich’s, the Chuck DeVore’s and if he wins the first battle, the Marco Rubio’s of the new generation of Republican leaders will have to slay the loyal liberal opposition that is taking this country in the wrong direction that 61% of Americans believe we are heading in.

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WAS KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND A GOOD CHOICE BY NEW YORK GOVERNOR DAVID PATERSON?

U.S. Senator Kirsten Giilibrand

U.S. Senator Kirsten Giilibrand

 
Bookmark and Share    When it was first announced that New York Governor David Paterson was appointing Congresswoman Kirsten Gillibrand to replace Secretary of State Hillary Roddam Clinton in the U.S. Senate, many of you may have been saying Kirsten who? And with good reason.She is little known to most living outside of the upstate New York region and has only served one full term in Congress after defeating incumbent Republican Congressman John Sweeney.

Gillibrand’s Congressional district is a fairly conservative oriented district, especially when it comes to fiscal issues and getting elected in her district is an intricate process that involves a great deal of bridge building.

You see, the 20th Congressional district takes in parts of 10 different New York counties spanning the Adirondacks, Catskills and Hudson Valley. Winning in her district takes a great deal of deal making.

It involves a lot of ring kissing in the rough and tumble world of New York politics.

To win in the 20th district you need to get your parties nomination and in this case that involves the county

Gillibrands Congressional District Covered Parts of  Columbia, Dutchess, Delaware, Essex, Greene, Otsego, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Warren, and Washington Counties

Gillibrand's Congressional District Covered Parts of Columbia, Dutchess, Delaware, Essex, Greene, Otsego, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Warren, and Washington Counties

chairmen and county committees of not one or two, but ten different counties. That’s a lot of favors to commit to.

So the fact that Gillibrand was able to win her party’s nomination for anything in the 20th district says volumes about her political savvy. Which is probably one reason why Paterson picker Gillibrand to replace Hillary.

Paterson is going to need a great deal of political savvy to win election to governor in his own right. Which leads us to another reason why Paterson may have appointed Gillibrand to the U.S. Senate.

Kirsten Gillabrand’s selection may have been one of the first steps in Patersons reelection effort, an effort that he will need plenty of help in.

Gillibrand happens to be pretty conservative for a modern day Democrat, which is one reason why Paterson has been catching a lot of flack for picking her. One liberal columnist predicts that both Paterson and Gillibrand will be kicked out of office in the next election.

In the case of David Paterson, I find that funny.

Paterson the son of well known Manhattan liberal State Senator, Basil Paterson, is the epitome of the liberal ideology who was born and raised in a liberal political family. As a politician he is a pro-quota, pro-abortion, pro-spending, pro-tax, pro illegal immigrant, anti school voucher, liberal. He is as liberal as they come, yet because he selected Gillibrand, liberal activists want him out.

Well the joke is on them.

He’s theirs and he is there to stay. He is staying mainly due to the fact that he appointed Kirsten Gillibrand.

New York Governor David Paterson

New York Governor David Paterson

The appointment of Gillibrand was a deal. It was a deal that would help take , of all things, pressure from conservatives off of Paterson.

Not conservative thinking people but New York Conservative Party members.

You see New York’s Conservative party is not really a political party. It is a patronageorganization.

They endorse candidates based upon how many jobs they can get for the endorsement. If the Democrat can offer more than the Republican than the Democrat gets the endorsement.

New York Conservative party officials come across principled especially on the issue of abortion. But when it comes to jobs they abandon their abortion stance quicker then the time it takes for a terrorist on a suicide mission to blow themselves up.

That is why there are so many Democrats who run with the Conservative endorsement. Many of them are pro-choice Democrats and many of them have at least 3 or 4 Conservatives on their payroll.

Kirsten Gillibrand did not have the Conservative party endorsement last time around, but expect her to have it when she runs for re-election as a senator.

Although she is pro-abortion, she has a great deal of conservative positions including on the issue of the right to bear arms. On fiscal matters, as a congresswoman she is more conservative than many Republicans. She voted against the last few bailout programs proposed. So there is room for cover for Conservative party members in their potential support for her but if that is the case, be sure to also look at her payroll and the conservative party members that will be on it.

As for Paterson, he most likely got a handshake and a promise from Conservative party officials who in turn for appointing Gillibrand to the senate, promise two things..

  1. Not to cross endorse the Republican nominee for Governor and
  2. To run only token opposition against Paterson on the Conservative party line.

That could help split the Republican vote and give Paterson some breathing room in his reelection effort and allows him to appeal to his now peeved liberal base.

Such a deal works well for Paterson. By appointing the congresswoman whose district garnered support from 10 different counties, Paterson probably ended up better than if he appointed Andrew Cuomo.

I mean after all, Andrew Cuomo was not going to get all that far against Paterson, the state’s first African- American Governor.

Andrew Cuomo already opposed the states first black candidate for Governor, Carl McCall, who once won the nomination but lost the elecetion to Republican Governor George Pataki.

Rudy Giuliani

Rudy Giuliani

For Andrew Cuomo to oppose a sitting Governor who happens to also be black, would be suicidal.

So Paterson is in a good position despite the bad state of affairs in New York and his bad decisions as governor.

The only real threat that could present itself is if Rudy Giuliani were to run. But if he was to run, the conservative split, set in motion by the Gillabrand appointment, has already helped to make it that much tougher for Rudy to beat Paterson and the same would hold true if he ran against Gillibrand for the U.S. Senate.

Conservatives hate Rudy Giuliani. He refuses to play ball with them and so they refused to endorse any of the three times that he ran for Mayor of New York City and if he runs for Governor, they are more than likely to find themselves running against him again.

So the bottom line is that the Gillibrand appointment was not a stupid one.

It was a smart choice. It was a choice that gained Paterson some respect from voters because of his bucking the establishment and not picking any heir apparent. It also did not anger moderate voters who would have held some animosity for Paterson for picking some leftwing radical.

Stupid. I think not!                                                            Bookmark and Share

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Three contractors are bidding to fix a broken fence at the Governor’s Mansion…

…in Springfield, Illinois; One from Chicago, another from Tennessee, & a third from Kentucky. They all go with to examine the fence.

The Tennessee contractor takes out a tape measure and does some measuring, then works some figures with a pencil.

“Well”, he says, “I figure the job will run about $900: $400 for materials, $400 for my crew and $100 profit for me.”

The Kentucky contractor also does some measuring and figuring, then says, ‘I can do this job for $700: $300 for materials, $300 for my crew and $100 profit for me.’

The Chicago contractor doesn’t measure or figure, but leans over to and whispers, ‘$2,700.’

The Governor is incredulous and whispers back, ‘You didn’t even measure like the other guys! How did you come up with such a high figure?’

The Chicago contractor whispers back, ‘$1000 for me, $1000 for you, and we hire that guy from Kentucky to fix the fence.’

‘Done!’ replies . And that my friends, is how it all works in Illinois politics!!!Submitted by Bill, Ardmore, Pa.

 

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THE TOP 10 POLITICAL HAPPENINGS OF 2008

With the new year here, we have the opportunity to reflect on the year gone by and to thank the passage of time for resolving some situations. While some happenings in 2008 came and went, other events of 2008 still require time, time that will absorb much of 2009 and even beyond.

So today, before we forge ahead with the rest of this new year, we reflect on the events that shaped politics and the politics that shaped events, by presenting to you the 10 most significant political stories of the year that helped to get us where we are today.

TONY SNOW

TONY SNOW

10. – THE DEATHS OF TIM RUSSERT and TONY SNOW

TIM RUSSERT

TIM RUSSERT

Both of these men loved politics. For a time they were both involved in politics on different sides of the aisle and at a different times they covered politics. Tony Snow started in print and broadcast journalism delivering political news and commentary and ended his career in politics as the Press Secretary for President Bush. Tim Russert began in politics working for a political legend, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York and ended covering politics on NBC. As host of Meet The Press, Tim became a part of every American household and despite his personal left leaning tendencies Tim Russert was respected for probing questions that were leveled at liberals and conservatives alike. Tony Snow was also a partisan. For decades he was a favorite in conservative circles, yet when delivering a news story people of every party carefully listened to the insightful delivery of facts that he presented. His last major endeavor was one that helped provide the White House with the ability to properly convey the right messages. Tony served as Press Secretary for 17 months. Probably the most understandable 17 months of the Presidents two terms in office. Tim Russert died after suffering a massive heart attack on Jun 13th at the age of 58 and Tony Snow died after battling colon cancer on July 12th at the age of 53. In life they shaped politics and political opinion. In death, they left us a legacy of lessons and examples to follow.

9 . – IS  THAT CAMPAIGN MONEY IN YOUR POCKET OR ARE YOU JUST GLAD TO SEE ME

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

The Empire State helped to set a tone for 2008 when early in the year, New York’s Governor, Elliot Spitzer got caught up in scandal. After serving only 14 months in office the rising Democrat star found himself standing next to his wife announcing his resignation. Suspicious transfers of money in and out of Spitzer’s bank account led federal investigators to believe that he might be taking bribes. However their probe discovered that for over several years Spitzer wasn’t taking bribes, he was paying out at least $80,000 for prostitutes. The period covered his tenure as New York’s Attorney General as well as his brief time as Governor. The happiest people of all in this episode were David Paterson and New Jersey. As Spitzer’s Lieutenant Governor, Paterson, became New York’s first African American Governor, and the nation’s first legally blind one. New Jersey was just happy to know that they were no longer the only state in the region to lose a governor because of sexual scandals and illegal conduct.

8. – WEEKEND AT KIM’S

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

Around August rumors began to circulate that North Korea’s obscure and, to put it kindly, eccentric leader, Kim Jong-Il, was dead. Since then no reputable sources have either seen him or heard from him. Not that that is unusual, few people have ever heard or seen Kim Jong-Il, but what is unusual are recent decisions that Kim Jong-Il supposedly made to eliminate efforts to develop nuclear power. Did Kim make that decision? Is North Korea really abandoning nuclear ambitions? Or is North Korea propping up Kim Jong-Il, like a bad, out of sync, Korean version of “Weekend At Bernie’s” while a different, unknown, brain dead ruler is pulling the strings and, at the same time, trying to pull the wool over our eyes? All jokes aside, the sensitivity of the situation is a dire one. Chaos on the Korean Peninsula could create a ripple effect that no one can afford. Dramatic events could alter sensitive relations with South Korea and negotiations with the United States. All of which could result in tensions throughout the world including those involving hard feelings between North Korea and Japan. And let us not forget North Korea’s greatest ally, China. With their booming economy, the Chinese are ambitious. Knowing who is in charge of things could be helpful in 2009.

7. – BID WELL FIDEL?

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

In 1959 Cuba took on the face of Fidel Castro. Just 90 miles off of our shores, Cuban communism and Castro were too close for comfort. As much as we didn’t like it, invasions, coups and even assassination attempts did not eliminate Castro’s hold on power. However, time did reduce Castro’s influence. As time changed most of the world, Castro and Cuba didn’t but the logistics which helped to make him a thorn in our side did change. The, once feared communist Soviet-Cuban relationship lost it’s potency as the Soviet Union lost it’s hammer and sickle. As time went by, our concerns with Cuba focused more on human rights for Cubans than defense from Cuba. So it was still welcome news when, in February, we discovered that an ailing Fidel Castro was resigning from office. Not that it mattered much. Before stepping down, Fidel told the Cuban Communist Party that they were too elect his brother Raul to be the new Commander in Chief. The event did not change things very much but after almost 50 years in power, and events such as the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Elian Gonzales and other disconcerting situations, as minor as the effects of this change may be, Fidel’s painstakingly slow departure from the world stage is welcomed and ranks as the seventh most dramatic political occurrence of 2008.

6. – THE GEOGIAN-RUSSIAN WARant1georgis1a2

It was not a battle that reshaped Europe again but the surprising developments that caused the Russian Army to invade a neighboring, breakaway Republic with internationally recognized sovereignty, gave us all a glimpse of reality. It may not be the Soviet Union anymore but a bear by any other name is still a bear and the vulnerabilities of newly formed and reformed European nations and those with relatively new freedoms still offer some new Russian leaders the same old reasons for wanting control. The incident helped to demonstrate that freedom in parts of Europe is still a fragile concept.

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

5. – THE EBAY APPOINTMENT

2008 ended with a story that will carry well into the first months of 2009. As President-Elect Obama vacated his seat in the U.S. Senate, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich began a private auction process to determine who will fill the vacancy. As investigators, under the direction of federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, investigated Blagojevich for numerous improprieties, they discovered that he was basing his appointment to the senate seat on who could give him the most for it. Blago wanted either a “cushy union” job, a high paying cabinet position or at the very least an enormous financial campaign contribution. After being arrested the Illinois state legislature began impeachment proceedings against Blagojevich and he began digging in his heals refusing to resign. The events have the potential for drawing in some big name co-conspirators and participants. From Rep. Jesse Jackson, jr. to President -Elect Obama’s incoming Chief of Staff, Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuelle, many reputations may yet be questioned in this scandal. And to make things even more interesting, Blagojevich took the opportunity to raise the stakes and named Roland Burris, a long time, old line, liberal Chicago Democrat party machine hack to replace Barack Obama. Not at all concerned with peoples faith in government, or the integrity of the process, Burriss accepted the tainted appointment and in doing so, puts the United States and it’s Democrat leader, Harry Reid in the position of denying to seat someone that would be the only African American in the United States Senate. So coming in as the fifth top political occurrence in 2008 is the story that will keep on bleeding and keep us reading…..the process to replace a Barack Obama in the senate. 

4. – BRINGING OUTSIDERS IN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

One of the most important political decisions made in 2008 was John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for Vice President on the Republican ticket. It was a controversial choice for some and one of the only right decisions made in the opinions of others. No matter how you see it, it remains one of the most spoken about political stories of the year. Beyond the newsworthiness are the implications. For many it was a sign of the fact that government needs thinking that is as far removed from the Washington D.C. mentality as Alaska is from Washington D.C itself. Many Americans are tired of Washington politics and want common sense as opposed to the one hand washes the other, old boys bureaucracy that we perceive as screwing us more than helping us. Sarah Palin embodied, and still does embody, that thinking. She is a political outsider who became a Governor by opposing the political class while representing the working class. Without abandoning conservative Republican principles, Sarah Palin fought against corrupt Republican and liberal politicians. Although picking Sarah Palin for Vice President may have been the right decision for John McCain, trying to restrict and control her wasn’t. By trying to script Sarah Palin, the McCain campaign lost out on the greatest advantageous quality Palin brought to the ticket…….her anti-establishment, outsider qualities. As McCain lost the election for President, Sarh Palin won exposure. Exposure that has made her a person who conservatives look forward to advancing the cause and for Americans to have to consider for national leadership in the future. So at number four in 2008 is the selection of Sarah Palin for Vice President. Thank you senator McCain!

ant1oil23. – “OILS WELL” IN THE ECONOMY?

The price of oil ranks third on our list of top stories. As prices for a barrel of oil soared to heights in excess of 150 dollars a barrel , gas prices flew up to over 4 dollars a gallon and the ripple effects raise the cost of everything from milk, eggs and bread to lumber, air fares, and life in general. The high cost of energy generated heated debates over domestic oil drilling, and pushed issues like immigration and terrorism off of the front burners in the race for President. Based upon the duration of the immediate negative effects of the price of oil combined with its ripple effects on the economy, its control of the political agenda and the long term policy initiatives that it created, oil prices is number 3 in ‘08. It is also likely to become a top story again, at least around August of ‘09, when the now delightfully low prices we see rise back up. 

2. – THE ELECTION OF BARACK OBAMA 

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

Putting all political opinion aside. Barack Obama ran a long hard campaign, that Republican strategists are dissecting in order to reproduce in elections of their own. The Obama campaign not only effectively tapped into voter dissatisfaction they organized it and organized it well. Their utilization of the internet was exemplary and their ability win favor through eloquence and style over substance and fact was political perfection. Despite some pitfalls such as Bill Ayers, ACORN, Rev. Wright, admitting a desire akin to socialism by stating that he wanted to spread the wealth , Barack Obama won big. To do so his campaign raised historic amounts of money and more than just raising that money, they spent it right and put it to good use. A use that mobilized the forces well enough to produce his substantial victory. The election of President-Elect Barack Obama comes in second on out not only because of how he won but because he did win. His victory marked the election of America’s first African American President. Like ant other first, it is notable and in this case it is profoundly notable. It demonstrates an undeniable ability for our nation to overcome racial differences and the evidence of decency overcoming prejudice is promising. The effects of President-Elect Obama’s leadership are yet to be seen but the lessons learned and points made by his election are unquestionable.

ant1bailout21 . – BAIL OUT MANIA

POLITICS 24/7 considers the 700 billion dollar bailout that the federal government approved to be the most profound and important story of 2009. Not only was the suggested need for this bailout indicative of our wrong ways of the past, it signaled a continuation of wrong ways in the future. Our promotion of spending as the answer to all of our problems has created generations ands a government that spend beyond our means. The 700 billion dollar bailout meant to solve our problems didn’t solve our anything, it just provided a quick fix. It did however, create more problems. It has called upon more people and more industries to put their own hands out. The bailout set in motion a sense of government control that has taken freedom, with all of it’s risks and promises, out of the free market and it has helped to move America closer to the socialism that we have fought against in the past. Many major events come and go in politics. What we once saw as earth shattering developments often become something that we later laugh about but we fear that bailout trend established in 2008 is no laughing matter for any time.

2008 was an intense year. There were many events and some of the most dramatic ones did not involve politics. Human nature played a role in all of them though and hopefully our better instincts will drive the events and politics of 2009.

With that in mind we wish everyone a happy new year and hope that our better instincts help to make each and every day better than the last.

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U.S. Senate Employment- ABILITY NOT REQUIRED

CAROLINE KENNEDY - The Most Qualified New Yorker forthe Job?

CAROLINE KENNEDY - The Most Qualified New Yorker forthe Job?

Does anyone really believe that Caroline Kennedy is the most qualified person in New York to represent the interests of New Yorkers in the United States Senate?

Assuming, for a moment, that she was not a Kennedy, would the replacement Governor of New York, David Paterson, be considering her for the position?

I think not.

But politics is a strange and twisted business.

Take for example David Paterson’s ascension to the Governor’s office.

Paterson was the son of a locally well known New York State Senator, Basil Paterson. Before Basil resigned from his senate seat, he pulled some strings and positioned his son David in the District Attorney’s office in Manhattan.

In 1985 David resigned from the D.A.’s office to work on the campaign of David Dinkins for Manhattan Borough President. Dinkins later became one of the city’s worst Mayors ever, served one term and was ultimately defeated for re-election by Rudy Giuliani.

After Dinkins’ campaign for Borough President, Leon Bogues who succeeded Basil Paterson in the state senate died. Subsequently a hastily prepared special election to fill the vacant seat was held.

With fifty eight percent of the districts Democrat County Committee behind him, David Paterson received the nomination for his fathers senate seat.

This senate district covers parts of Manhattan including Harlem, so it is staunchly liberal.  As such,  the Democrat nomination is tantamount to winning the election and David did.

In 2006, the state’s Attorney General, Elliot Spitzer sought the Democrat party’s nomination for Governor. With many high profile, Wall street crimes successfully prosecuted by Spitzer, he was the party’s rising star. In fact many saw him as a future national leader for Democrats. His race for the nomination was anything but a race. With one opponent Spitzer won the nomination in a landslide and with a Republican of little recognition and even less money, Spitzer was assured of winning the Governor’s race.

That in mind, he selected David Paterson to be his running mate. The selection of Paterson helped to win favor with minorities and the liberal wing of the party. As an African -American who established an ultra liberal following, the addition of Paterson to the ticket allowed Elliot the freedom to not have to campaign too far to the left. Thereby allowing him to speak to those in the middle without turning them off  by publicly addressing liberal concerns.

With Paterson on the ticket, Spitzer knew liberals would be behind him.

And they were. As expected Elliot Spitzer won in a landslide election.

But that landslide victory quickly turned into a even quicker and more dramatic fall from grace as the earth shifted again and Spitzer was forced to resign from office after it was discovered that he was hiring call girls for, shall we say,  nongovernmental business.

And that is how David Paterson became Governor.

Now as Governor, David Paterson finds himself in the position of appointing  someone to replace Hillary Clinton in the U.S. Senate.

That situation, in and of itself, is another stroke of luck for David Paterson.

After losing the nomination for President, New York Democrats wanted assurances that Hillary would not challenge David Paterson for the nomination for Governor of New York in 2010.

They never got that assurance until Barack Obama took care of that for them and nominated Hillary for Secretary of State.

Of course Paterson could  feel that a challenge to his nomination for re-election is not yet resolved with Clinton out of the picture.  Andrew Cuomo’s desire for the job could pose a threat but if Paterson appointed Cuomo to the U.S. Senate, he too would be taken out of the picture thereby assuring Paterson the nomination.

So what of her replacement?

Well a look at David Paterson’s rise to power would indicate the rationale behind choosing Caroline Kennedy.

Paterson did little to get the job that he now has.

He entered politics through the political strings pulled by his father and came to political office through his fathers name. And ultimately he became a governor because of a vacancy in the seat.

So why not select Caroline Kennedy?  She has the Kennedy name and there is a vacancy.

So putting qualifications aside, there is absolutely no reason not to select her but quite a few reasons for Paterson to do so.

The first being, by appointing Caroline Kennedy to the U.S. Senate, Paterson will be winning the favor of Kennedy’s allover the country. That means plenty of money in his bid for re-election.

The second reason is perception. As a Kennedy, Caroline is adored. Regardless of issues or her positions on the issues, the public perceives her as a symbol. As the last surviving child of an adored, martyred President, Caroline Kennedy is a figure few want to oppose. So she is a safe choice that spares Paterson a great deal of criticism.

 Additionally, after choosing Caroline for the senate seat, a race against Andrew Cuomo probably would not be a much of race. Paterson would have the backing of both U.S. Senators form New York, Chuck Schumer and Caroline Kennedy. He would also have their organizational and financial support as well as that of all the Kennedy’s.

So given the logic of politics, whether Caroline Kennedy is qualified or not, really doesn’t matter. Qualifications are not a factor. If they were David Paterson might be considering New Yorkers with expertise in areas that need leadership like our economy. Why not consider New Yorker Donald Trump? If Mike Bloomberg is such a great Mayor of New York City, why not appoint him to the senate? Why not replace one Clinton with another?  Bill is available.  It is not unprecedented for a former President to serve in congress and if he is so great, why not him?

I am not saying I want any of those characters in the U.S. Senate but why not consider them?

The answer simply is that qualifications are not a factor.

As Peter King, a New York congressman from Long Island said “ if name identification is a qualification, why not pick J-lo?”. Jennifer Lopez has plenty of name recognition.

He’s right.

I do not know where Caroline Kennedy stands on the issues. I do know that of all the Kennedy’s she is my favorite. There is nothing to dislike about her. So she comes to the table with a clean slate with me. But is her name really a reason to suggest that she is the most qualified New Yorker to help shape the future of our nation?

Realistically, no, but politics has little to do with the reality of national concerns. Politics is personal and it revolves around the personal ambitions of individuals in government, not the people who are effected by government.

So why not Caroline Kennedy? It could be worse. MoveOn.org founder and liberal lunatic, George Soros is a New York resident.

Considered the 55th richest person in the world and one of the three wealthiest in New York, with a net worth of 7.2 billion dollars he could certainly finance the success of a political careers including David Paterson. But who will assure the success of our nation?

While some play name games and others try to auction off elected offices, who will assure us that the best people represent us?  Certainly not those who are already in office.

punchline-politics21

At the height of a political corruption trial, the prosecuting attorney attacked
a witness.

“Isn’t it true,” he bellowed, “that you accepted five thousand dollars to compromise this case?”

The witness stared out the window as though he hadn’t heard the question.

“Isn’t it true that you accepted five thousand dollars to compromise this case?” the lawyer repeated.

The witness still did not respond.

Finally, the judge leaned over and said, “Sir, please answer the question.”

“Oh,” the startled witness said, “I thought he was talking to you.”

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THE TOP 10 POLITICAL HAPPENINGS OF 2008

With the new year here, we have the opportunity to reflect on the year gone by and to thank the passage of time for resolving some situations. While some happenings in 2008 came and went, other events of 2008 still require time, time that will absorb much of 2009 and even beyond.

So today, before we forge ahead with the rest of this new year, we reflect on the events that shaped politics and the politics that shaped events, by presenting to you the 10 most significant political stories of the year that helped to get us where we are today.

TONY SNOW

TONY SNOW

10. – THE DEATHS OF TIM RUSSERT and TONY SNOW

TIM RUSSERT

TIM RUSSERT

Both of these men loved politics. For a time they were both involved in politics on different sides of the aisle and during  a different time they covered both sides of the aisle in politics . Tony Snow started in print and broadcast journalism delivering political news and commentary and ended his career in politics as the Press Secretary for President Bush. Tim Russert began in politics working for a political legend, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York and ended covering politics on NBC. As host of Meet The Press, Tim became a part of every American household and despite his personal left leaning tendencies Tim Russert was respected for probing questions that were leveled at liberals and conservatives alike. Tony Snow was also a partisan. For decades he was a favorite in conservative circles, yet when delivering a news story people of every party carefully listened to the insightful delivery of facts that he presented. His last major endeavor was one that helped provide the White House with the ability to properly convey the right messages. Tony served as Press Secretary for 17 months. Probably the most understandable 17 months of the Presidents two terms in office. Tim Russert died after suffering a massive heart attack on Jun 13th at the age of 58 and Tony Snow died after battling colon cancer on July 12th at the age of 53. In life they shaped politics and political opinion. In death, they left us a legacy of lessons and examples to follow.

 

 

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

9 . – IS THAT CAMPAIGN MONEY IN YOUR POCKET OR ARE YOU JUST GLAD TO SEE ME?

 

The Empire State helped to set a tone for 2008 when early in the year, New York’s Governor, Elliot Spitzer got caught up in scandal. After serving only 14 months in office the rising Democrat star found himself standing next to his wife announcing his resignation. Suspicious transfers of money in and out of Spitzer’s bank account led federal investigators to believe that he might be taking bribes. However their probe discovered that for over several years Spitzer wasn’t taking bribes, he was paying out at least $80,000 for prostitutes. The period covered his tenure as New York’s Attorney General as well as his brief time as Governor. The happiest people of all in this episode were David Paterson and New Jersey. As Spitzer’s Lieutenant Governor, Paterson, became New York’s first African American Governor, and the nation’s first legally blind one. New Jersey was just happy to know that they were no longer the only state in the region to lose a governor because of sexual scandals and illegal conduct.

 

 

8. – WEEKEND AT KIM’S

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

 

Around August rumors began to circulate that North Korea’s obscure and, to put it kindly, eccentric leader, Kim Jong-Il, was dead. Since then no reputable sources have either seen him or heard from him. Not that that is unusual, few people have ever heard or seen Kim Jong-Il, but what is unusual are recent decisions that Kim Jong-Il supposedly made to eliminate efforts to develop nuclear power. Did Kim make that decision? Is North Korea really abandoning nuclear ambitions? Or is North Korea propping up Kim Jong-Il, like a bad, out of sync, Korean version of “Weekend At Bernie’s” while a different, unknown, brain dead ruler is pulling the strings and, at the same time, trying to pull the wool over our eyes? All jokes aside, the sensitivity of the situation is a dire one. Chaos on the Korean Peninsula could create a ripple effect that no one can afford. Dramatic events could alter sensitive relations with South Korea and negotiations with the United States. All of which could result in tensions throughout the world including those involving hard feelings between North Korea and Japan. And let us not forget North Korea’s greatest ally, China. With their booming economy, the Chinese are ambitious. Knowing who is in charge of things could be helpful in 2009.

 

 

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

7. – BID WELL FIDEL?

 

In 1959 Cuba took on the face of Fidel Castro. Just 90 miles off of our shores, Cuban communism and Castro were too close for comfort. As much as we didn’t like it, invasions, coups and even assassination attempts did not eliminate Castro’s hold on power. However, time did reduce Castro’s influence. As time changed most of the world, Castro and Cuba didn’t but the logistics which helped to make him a thorn in our side did change. The, once feared communist Soviet-Cuban relationship lost it’s potency as the Soviet Union lost it’s hammer and sickle. As time went by, our concerns with Cuba focused more on human rights for Cubans than defense from Cuba. So it was still welcome news when, in February, we discovered that an ailing Fidel Castro was resigning from office. Not that it mattered much. Before stepping down, Fidel told the Cuban Communist Party that they were too elect his brother Raul to be the new Commander in Chief. The event did not change things very much but after almost 50 years in power, and events such as the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Elian Gonzales and other disconcerting situations, as minor as the effects of this change may be, Fidel’s painstakingly slow departure from the world stage is welcomed and ranks as the seventh most dramatic political occurrence of 2008.

 

 ant1georgis1a2

6. – THE GEOGIAN-RUSSIAN WAR

 

It was not a battle that reshaped Europe again but the surprising developments that caused the Russian Army to invade a neighboring, breakaway Republic with internationally recognized sovereignty, gave us all a glimpse of reality. It may not be the Soviet Union anymore but a bear by any other name is still a bear and the vulnerabilities of newly formed and reformed European nations and those with relatively new freedoms still offer some new Russian leaders the same old reasons for wanting control. The incident helped to demonstrate that freedom in parts of Europe is still a fragile concept.

 

 

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

5. – THE EBAY APPOINTMENT

 

2008 ended with a story that will carry well into the first months of 2009. As President-Elect Obama vacated his seat in the U.S. Senate, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich began a private auction process to determine who will fill the vacancy. As investigators, under the direction of federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, investigated Blagojevich for numerous improprieties, they discovered that he was basing his appointment to the senate seat on who could give him the most for it. Blago wanted either a “cushy union” job, a high paying cabinet position or at the very least an enormous financial campaign contribution. After being arrested the Illinois state legislature began impeachment proceedings against Blagojevich and he began digging in his heals refusing to resign. The events have the potential for drawing in some big name co-conspirators and participants. From Rep. Jesse Jackson, jr. to President -Elect Obama’s incoming Chief of Staff, Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuelle, many reputations may yet be questioned in this scandal. And to make things even more interesting, Blagojevich took the opportunity to raise the stakes and named Roland Burris, a long time, old line, liberal Chicago Democrat party machine hack to replace Barack Obama. Not at all concerned with peoples faith in government, or the integrity of the process, Burriss accepted the tainted appointment and in doing so, puts the United States and it’s Democrat leader, Harry Reid in the position of denying to seat someone that would be the only African American in the United States Senate. So coming in as the fifth top political occurrence in 2008 is the story that will keep on bleeding and keep us reading…..the process to replace a Barack Obama in the senate.

 

 

4. – BRINGING OUTSIDERS IN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

 

One of the most important political decisions made in 2008 was John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for Vice President on the Republican ticket. It was a controversial choice for some and one of the only right decisions made in the opinions of others. No matter how you see it, it remains one of the most spoken about political stories of the year. Beyond the newsworthiness are the implications. For many it was a sign of the fact that government needs thinking that is as far removed from the Washington D.C. mentality as Alaska is from Washington D.C itself. Many Americans are tired of Washington politics and want common sense as opposed to the one hand washes the other, old boys bureaucracy that we perceive as screwing us more than helping us. Sarah Palin embodied, and still does embody, that thinking. She is a political outsider who became a Governor by opposing the political class while representing the working class. Without abandoning conservative Republican principles, Sarah Palin fought against corrupt Republican and liberal politicians. Although picking Sarah Palin for Vice President may have been the right decision for John McCain, trying to restrict and control her wasn’t. By trying to script Sarah Palin, the McCain campaign lost out on the greatest advantageous quality Palin brought to the ticket…….her anti-establishment, outsider qualities. As McCain lost the election for President, Sarh Palin won exposure. Exposure that has made her a person who conservatives look forward to advancing the cause and for Americans to have to consider for national leadership in the future. So at number four in 2008 is the selection of Sarah Palin for Vice President. Thank you senator McCain!

 

 

ant1oil23. – “OILS WELL” IN THE ECONOMY?

 

The price of oil ranks third on our list of top stories. As prices for a barrel of oil soared to heights in excess of 150 dollars a barrel , gas prices flew up to over 4 dollars a gallon and the ripple effects raise the cost of everything from milk, eggs and bread to lumber, air fares, and life in general. The high cost of energy generated heated debates over domestic oil drilling, and pushed issues like immigration and terrorism off of the front burners in the race for President. Based upon the duration of the immediate negative effects of the price of oil combined with its ripple effects on the economy, its control of the political agenda and the long term policy initiatives that it created, oil prices is number 3 in ‘08. It is also likely to become a top story again, at least around August of ‘09, when the now delightfully low prices we see rise back up.

 

 

2. – THE ELECTION OF BARACK OBAMA

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

 

Putting all political opinion aside, Barack Obama ran a long hard campaign, that Republican strategists are dissecting in order to reproduce in elections of their own. The Obama campaign not only effectively tapped into voter dissatisfaction, they organized it and organized it well. Their utilization of the internet was exemplary and their ability to win favor through eloquence and style over substance and fact was done to political perfection. Despite some pitfalls such as Bill Ayers, ACORN, Rev. Wright, admitting a desire akin to socialism by stating that he wanted to spread the wealth, Barack Obama won big. To do so his campaign raised historic amounts of money and more than just raising that money, they spent it right and put it to good use. A use that mobilized the forces well enough to produce his substantial victory. The election of President-Elect Barack Obama comes in second not only because of how he won but because he did win. His victory marked the election of America’s first African American President. Like any other first, it is notable and in this case it is profoundly notable. It demonstrates an undeniable ability for our nation to overcome racial differences and the evidence of decency overcoming prejudice is promising. The effects of President-Elect Obama’s leadership are yet to be seen but the lessons learned and points made by his election are unquestionable.

 

 

ant1bailout21 . – BAIL OUT MANIA

 

POLITICS 24/7 considers the 700 billion dollar bailout that the federal government approved to be the most profound and important story of 2009. Not only was the suggested need for this bailout indicative of our wrong ways of the past, it signaled a continuation of wrong ways in the future. Our promotion of spending as the answer to all of our problems has created generations ands a government that spend beyond our means. The 700 billion dollar bailout meant to solve our problems didn’t solve our anything, it just provided a quick fix. It did however, create more problems. It has called upon more people and more industries to put their own hands out. The bailout set in motion a sense of government control that has taken freedom, with all of it’s risks and promises, out of the free market and it has helped to move America closer to the socialism that we have fought against in the past. Many major events come and go in politics. What we once saw as earth shattering developments often become something that we later laugh about but we fear that bailout trend established in 2008 is no laughing matter for any time.

 

2008 was an intense year. There were many events and some of the most dramatic ones did not involve politics. Human nature played a role in all of them though and hopefully our better instincts will drive the events and politics of 2009.

With that in mind we wish everyone a happy new year and hope that our better instincts help to make each and every day better than the last.

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