Thursday, January 31, 2008
California GOP Debate
News has now broke that the establishment candidate will pick up another endorsement from Governor Schwarzenegger today. The establishment has truly rallied around their RINO.
It's ironic that the debate last night was held in the Reagan Library, because the Republican establishment has turned its back on Reagan conservatism and this general election is going to have Reagan-like results. Only it won't be the Republicans who are celebrating. If the Democrats wise-up and nominate Obama - or just anyone instead of Clinton - then we're talking Mondale numbers, folks.
(So you don't have to look it up, Mondale received 40.6% of the vote.)
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Corker Will Vote Against Stimulus Policy
1) the money wasn't also being given to illegal aliens, because it isn't like we need to give Mexicans another reason to come into our country illegally;
2) there were cuts in the budget that equaled the amount of money being dispersed, or, in the alternative, a government surplus into which this money would come from;
3) people who didn't work this past year, and thus didn't pay into the system, don't receive a "rebate," because then it's not a rebate - it's welfare;
4) the rebates would get to hard-working Americans before June or beyond, because there's no telling how bad of shape this economy is going to be in by then.
As it is, the House plan has no elements that would meet the above criteria, much less all of them that would be required for this to look more like an economic stimulus and less like political pandering to the electorate. Bob Corker sees that, and he made no bones about his position yesterday in a conference call, stating that he would not vote for the plan once it is before the Senate.
Good for Bob. He's not voting lockstep with the neocon machine. Bush, the GOP, and the Democrats are all about rebates now because it is an election year, and they want voters to feel good about the Congress and President. Just think of this as incumbent protection, and the real victim is this country's economic viability.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Ron Paul and Ronald Reagan
This video is quite interesting. First, it is worth playing because you get some wonderful oratory by my hero, Ronald Reagan. I would play it a hundred times over just to hear him. Second, it shows some interesting confluence between the two Ron's. Third, it shows how inspirational Ron Paul can be when you put a little violin in the background. One of my main complaints with the candidates (sans Fred Thompson) is that they don't inspire me. As Fred pointed out with Huckabee and the "hate America first crowd," I want to drive headlong into oncoming traffic after hearing most of them. To me, Ron Paul has been very bland in the debates thus far. With this packaging, I don't feel that way, and I feel a bit better about him as a candidate.
What do you think? Is it all in the packaging, or is this simply a case of substance being ignored due to the lack of style that surrounds it?
MORE: After posting this, I decided to see if I could find some formal explanation for the racist rants that were in Ron Paul's newsletters. Here is what I found from a Ron Paul press release:
"The quotations in The New Republic article are not mine and do not represent what I believe or have ever believed. I have never uttered such words and denounce such small-minded thoughts.
“In fact, I have always agreed with Martin Luther King, Jr. that we should only be concerned with the content of a person’s character, not the color of their skin. As I stated on the floor of the U.S. House on April 20, 1999: ‘I rise in great respect for the courage and high ideals of Rosa Parks who stood steadfastly for the rights of individuals against unjust laws and oppressive governmental policies.’
“This story is old news and has been rehashed for over a decade. It’s once again being resurrected for obvious political reasons on the day of the New Hampshire primary.
“When I was out of Congress and practicing medicine full-time, a newsletter was published under my name that I did not edit. Several writers contributed to the product. For over a decade, I have publically taken moral responsibility for not paying closer attention to what went out under my name.”
This seems to explain quite a bit of what was lobbed at Ron Paul by the same idiots who blew the George Allen remarks out of context back in 2006. My concern with Paul in this scandal is the same as with Allen - neither campaign even came close to responding strongly and with conviction against these allegations. Paul has been painted as a racist in much the same manner as Allen, and people will forever associate the two with this label because the people who handle their campaigns were not effective in combating the allegations.
For an interesting piece on this controversy, take a look at Outside the Beltway from earlier in January.
I'll try to post as soon as the results from Florida are known. Like Sharon Cobb, I think that only two viable candidates come out of Florida for the GOP. And the winner tonight has the advantage going into Super Tuesday.
I'm also working on a Knox County Voters Guide to be released later this week.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Vote Early, Vote Often, and Vote for Fred
This is not a vote "thrown away," folks. Evidence presented to me over the past several weeks (as with Carl Cameron's post on the subject) leads me to believe that Fred's campaign was an accident, that the idea was to generate some support as a vehicle to having Fred on the ticket as a Vice Presidential nominee. The support was too great, Fred was brought into the race, and the rest is history.
A vote for Fred Thompson sends the message to Governor Romney and Senator McCain that Fred Thompson can bring much to the ticket. If Fred were to break 20% support after withdrawing from the race, the eventual GOP nominee would have to acknowledge that there is real promise in our former U.S. Senator.
This FredHead wants to see Thompson on the ticket - which was apparently the idea in the first place.
Williams Undecided About Running? Yeah, Right...
What a load of manure.
Everywhere I go I hear of Williams calling all of the liberal-to-moderate PACs, shaking them down for campaign funds so that he can battle the popular Republican Mike Faulk in November.
Williams - who never has shown any inkling of understanding conservative values - has already made his decision, and it has nothing to do with partisanship. He's going to get his clock cleaned by Mike Faulk come November, and there won't be a better positive outcome for all Tennesseans that night because of it.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
Virginia Congressman Tells Bush to Quit Trying to Outlaw Firearms
In the following letter, Congressman Virgil Goode (R-VA) lets Bush know that he's in the wrong on this one:
January 22, 2008
President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington DC 20500
Dear President Bush:
Your Solicitor General has just filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in the D.C. v. Heller case arguing that categorical gun bans of virtually all self-defense firearms are constitutional if a court determines they are "reasonable" -- the lowest standard of constitutional review.
If this view prevails, a national ban on all firearms -- including hunting rifles -- could be constitutional, even if the court decides -- on ample historical evidence -- that the Founders intended the Second Amendment as an individual right.
I would ask that you direct the Justice Department to withdraw this unfortunate brief and to replace it with an opinion which reflects the right of law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms.
Thank you for your consideration.
Gun Owners of America has generated this press release along the same lines. The National Rifle Association has issued several statements regarding the amici briefs. Say Uncle also has a few thoughts.
The Administration's brief is a real shame. It gets quite a bit of the argument right, and then it takes a horrid turn for the worse about 2/3 of the way through, venturing into some fantasyland where criminals abide by the laws and machine guns can be found as easily as crack cocaine. It makes one wonder if President Bush really did support the Brady Gun Ban, that it wasn't just lip service that he hated to see it go when it lapsed back in 2004.
I guess we can chalk this up to another issue that went wrong under President Bush.
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Huckster Still Using Push Polls in FL, MO
The preacher plays dirty, folks.
(Hat tip: Instapundit)
MORE: Nathan Moore elaborates on Huckabee's unethical - but not illegal - campaign efforts.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Red State Update: Fred Supporters Resort to Suicide
My "ape-like enthusiasm" is gone, too.
And if you are interested in Jackie's painting of Fred Thompson, it's on ebay here. As of 2:08 P.M. on Wednesday, the bidding is at $365. Don't even think that you're outbidding me on this one...
Franken the Flip Flopper
Not flashy, but quite effective.
Labels: 2008 Senate Races
Moncier Sues Knox County Commissioners - Again
Moncier sued Moore and Pinkston in their individual capacities so that Knox County Law Director John Owings wouldn't have to defend them. Smart move, as always, by Moncier, in that it could lead to Owings being part of the Plaintiff's case instead of the Defense. Let Moore and Pinkston get their own lawyers.
If Moncier wins, then Moore and Pinkston could be removed from their elected positions.
Quite frankly, it's a shame that Moncier had to do this. If Knox County District Attorney Randy Nichols was doing his job, the two would already have been charged with perjury. From what I have read in their sworn depositions, heard from their sworn testimony before Chancellor Weaver, and know from my own knowledge, I don't see how one could argue that the felony of perjury was not committed.
Labels: Knox County Politics
Blackburn: Will "Probably" Support Romney
One answer that was obvious to many already seems to have come to the forefront. Rep. Marsha Blackburn told the Washington Times that she will "probably return to supporting Mitt Romney."
Not really a surprise there. I suspect that Congressman Duncan will make a similar announcement within the next few days.
The same article also quotes sources that indicate that many of Thompson's staffers might be joining up with McCain. Given the level of disorganization and vision in the Thompson campaign, that might shore things up for Romney. (Just kidding, folks.)
Fred's out. Now I have to lampoon the GOP nominee from the Republican National Convention until Election Day. Not sure which candidate I will be backing during the savaging of the as-not-yet-known moderate GOP nominee, but I'm sure that it will add to my already cramped schedule.
Pearl's Vols lost. Got their butts handed to 'em in the second half by a pathetic Kentucky team. I love what Pearl has done with our program, but I think he might need to look at adjusting the rotation a bit. I've (of course) been to every home game this season, so I have a basis for my opinions. Ryan Childress - who made outstanding progress last year - isn't the same player this year. I'm hopeful that Duke Crews eats into Ryan's minutes when Crews is allowed to play, which would mean both Chism and Crews on the floor at the same time. Chris Lofton needs more minutes, too, as long as he is being aggressive, as we he was during the first half and end of the game last night. If that comes at the expense of JaJuan Smith, so be it. Finally, for every alley-oop that J.P. Prince and Tyler Smith miss instead of just putting the ball in the basket, the whole team needs to run stadium steps. Last night proved that Tennessee isn't in the same class as Memphis (after all, our coach has class) and Kansas. We're still good, and all that matters is peaking at tournament time, but we're not a Top 5 team at this point in time.
The weather sucks. It's 4:00 A.M., and I have no idea if I will be in court today or not. Sevier County Schools are on a 2-hour delay, and there isn't a weather policy on the Sevier County website. Maryville City Schools seem to be on schedule, which is what the Blount County courts follow. Not sure if I can get there, though, since it appears that the streets in my subdivision are still icy.
My elbow hurts. Yes, I made fun of falling yesterday, but I really did land on my elbow yesterday morning. I figured since the Knox County Schools were still on regular schedule that things would be OK. Nope. I don't think my elbow is broken, and I won't be without an X-ray. I guess that's the problem with a high pain tolerance.
Heath Ledger is dead. That sucks. After seeing the trailers, I was really looking forward to seeing Ledger as The Joker in the new Batman movie, The Dark Knight. Ledger was a very talented actor, and the thought that he died from an overdose is downright depressing.
Just a series of bummers, folks.
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Why Fred Must Stay In the Race
Isn't that what we need? Someone who inspires us? None of the Democrats are inspiring. I've said before that if John McCain inspires you, it probably says more about you than it does about McCain. The guy couldn't inspire me to get off the sofa. Romney, Huckabee, Paul, Giuliani - these guys have no shot at inspiring me to do anything but look away from our government.
This ad sums up what Fred means to this race. It shows the lies, the deceit, the scandal, and the duplicity of the other Republican candidates. It shows that America's future as the light of the free world is what is at stake here, the freedoms of your children and mine. As of this morning, there is only one conservative running for President of the United States.
I really hope that Fred sees it this morning before any decisions are made.
Hat Tip: Tennesseans for Thompson.
Another One Bites the Dust, or Another Lesson in Listening to the Wife
So I stepped out the door, and then I hit the pavement. Yeah, don't go outside in Knox County this morning if you can help it. I had heard that there were wrecks galore throughout the area, but I figured that it was the usual overblown winter weather precautions. Not this time.
My front steps and sidewalk were a sheet of invisible ice. Files flew, my briefcase flew, but I did not. Luckily, my elbow broke my fall.
I should have listened to my wife - as always.
Searching for a Debate in South Carolina
With the somewhat exception of healthcare, no other issues were talked about. Of course, race, sex, and John McCain were discussed - ad nauseum. In fact, for ten minutes, it was actually debated as to whether Bill Clinton was black. No, I'm not kidding.
My winner? I would pick John Edwards, as he was able to make a few jabs but relatively keep his nose clean. The worst that Edwards was called was a lawyer, which actually is a step up from Wal-Mart sleazebag lawyer (Clinton) and Chicago slumlord defender lawyer (Obama).
Obama did well, in my opinion, in that he didn't let the snide and overly aggressive Clinton take him off of his game. Clinton was awful, quite frankly. If the Democrats make her the nominee over Obama, I might have to go back on my claim that the Republicans have no chance in 2008.
Overall, good entertainment, but sad for the Democratic Party.
MORE: Sharon Cobb, one of our friends to the Left, has her analysis. It seems that we share many of the same opinions of what happened and who was the winner. Ilissa Gold also wanted to call "BS" on several of Hillary's claims. (Heck, it was easy to tell when Hillary was lying last night - her mouth was moving.) Also, Glen Dean liveblogged the event and has a round-up of reactions, as well.
Monday, January 21, 2008
Red State Update: Romney Wins the States Nobody Cares About, and McCain Wants to Turn Michigan Into a Parking Lot for Canada
Those topics and more from the Jackie and Dunlap at Red State Update:
The Rise of the Pragmatists
As we are on the verge of Fred either soldiering on to Super Tuesday (where he could pull a state or two from the ranks and hold out for a brokered convention, which, given a look on the map and depending greatly on the resolve of the particular candidates, is still a real possibility) or terminating his candidacy, the pragmatic conservatives are starting to spin this week's probable nominee as palatable to other conservatives. I'm not sure if they are trying to convince others, convince themselves, or toe the party line, but that's probably something that only each of them individually can answer.
Some people aren't so moving. Pete Fanning won't be backing one of the pseudoconservatives come election day in Wisconsin. (Hat tip: Volunteer Voters.) UCLA Law Professor Stephen Bainbridge plans to sit out the election if Fred isn't an option. Bob Krumm is still planning on voting for Fred on Super Tuesday - as am I.
I'm certainly not passing judgment here, folks. I want to be clear on that. These men and women have been my conservative friends for years, and what happens between now and November doesn't change that. You see, I realize the anguish that these pragmatic conservatives are facing. They are political animals, and they don't have a candidate in the field that even comes close to representing their values. But they want to be involved - which is natural. So do I. They want to experience the camaraderie of working for the cause. After all, isn't that what being a member of a "party" is all about?
I admit - it's about to get really lonely over here at VOLuntarilyConservative. I realize that. I suspect that the day is coming soon where the GOP declares me the enemy. I will continue to support conservatives - the vast majority of whom will be Republican - both here in Tennessee and beyond. I'm not sure how that support will be received, though.
One point - I ask for people not to put the cart before the horse here. Fred's numbers are - get this - up in Florida, where he is one-point behind Huckabee and just out of the margin of error to Rudy Giuliani, who has been a Florida resident over the past several months. The Maritime Sentry pens a lovely plea to Fred Thompson to stay in the race. I join in that plea, as does An Angeleno's View of the World. So does Erik at RedState. Word out of Florida is that Fred's operation is still up and running while he tends to his sick mother back here in Tennessee. My understanding is that Fred has the funds to take him through February 5th. Stay in a bit longer, Fred. You're making up ground, and American conservatives need you now more than ever.
MORE: Via e-mail, it has been put to me as to whether or not I would support a ticket that had a true conservative - let's say Fred - as the VP nominee. That's a tough theoretical question.
If it's Fred, I probably would (especially on a McCain ticket, because McCain's health ain't exactly peachy). I'm not saying that I would for certain without knowing all of the parameters (Who is the conservative in question? Who is the nominee? Who is the opposition? Who are the third-party and independent candidates?), but I suppose that having Fred somewhere on the ticket is a heck of a lot better than not at all.
Does that make me a pragmatist? I hope not, but I guess that's for the rest of you to decide.
EVEN MORE: Bill Quick has the idea (Hat tip: Instapundit):
“You fight an election with the politicians you have.”
No, you fight an election over the principles you hold. When you are reduced to fighting an election with whatever politicians come to hand, you are admitting you - and your party - no longer have principles, and that you are merely engaged in a squabble for power at any cost.
Read the whole thing, including the comments, which are outstanding.
A Pastor's View from Inside a Huckabee Rally
"So here is the summary of the first observation. People, including Christians, so desperately want heroes that they will turn off rational thought once they decide, for whatever reason, that some person is going to be that hero. Secondly, the Christian community is no different from the non-Christian community when it comes to shallowness, practicing thought by emotion, and sheer unmitigated gullibility."
McAtee has a very interesting read, and his experiences are not isolated (as other Christians who don't support Huckabee can attest).
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Report: More American Babies in 2006 Than in 45 Years
"The nearly 4.3 million births in 2006 were mostly due to a bigger population, especially a growing number of Hispanics. That group accounted for nearly one-quarter of all U.S. births. But non-Hispanic white women and other racial and ethnic groups were having more babies, too."
And why is this occurring? Well, it seems obvious to some.
Some complain that many illegal immigrants come here purposely to have children.
"The child is an automatic American citizen, thus entitled to all benefits of American citizens. This gives a certain financial incentive for people coming from other countries illegally to have children here," said John Vinson, president of the Virginia-based American Immigration Control Foundation.
With a Democratic Congress and a likely Democratic president in 2009 expanding our bloated social services system to cover all of these new Hispanic babies, is it so hard to see why so many Americans are pessimistic about our future as a self-sustaining sovereign nation?
Friday, January 18, 2008
Buchanan: GOP is Growing Up, Not Dying
I believe Buchanan to be in error in lumping Fred Thompson in with establishment candidate Rudy Giuliani, but I agree with his overall thesis that these primaries are showing how out of touch the GOP establishment is with the grassroots.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
"I'd Peter Falk her."
Well that's one way to get on TV...
Firearm Bill on Tennessee Senate Floor Today
SB23 allows a person who has a valid Right-to-Carry permit to carry a firearm in a place where alcohol is served, as long as the permit holder is not consuming alcohol or is not otherwise prohibited by posting provisions.
Of course, I suppose the vote matters little since Naifeh will - as is typical - make sure that it never gets to a vote in the House. It is a serious failure on the part of pro-firearm groups that Jimmy Naifeh hasn't been politically removed from the Speaker's chair.
PETA: Sex Sells
However, I really dig their new ad:
Now that's funny! I wonder if this ad is based on actual events from Britney and Jamie Lynn Spears' childhood.
Faulk in Knoxville
GOP superstars have been hosting fundraisers for Faulk all across the Volunteer State, showing a) how popular Faulk has become in Republican circles, and b) how infamous Faulk's opponent, Mike Williams, has become in Tennessee.
It's a good thing that Mike Faulk is having success in raising funds, too, because I'm hearing that Mike Williams will be shaking down every PAC and lobbyist that he can find to fund his 2008 re-election bid.
Paul Speaks Out Against Raising the Gas Tax
Romney Stayin' Alive in Michigan
I guess the margin was a bit surprising. Nine points shows that McCain is not the frontrunner that the mainstream media declared him to be after the 11 Republicans in New Hampshire had their say. Reports that I heard all day were from Michigan voters who didn't really care for Romney but voted for him to deny McCain the victory.
I will say this - I love Romney's strategy of concentrating on the Nevada caucuses instead of heading to South Carolina. All eyes in South Carolina will be on Fred Thompson, Mike Huckabee, and John McCain. I'm not convinced that all three will see Florida if they fail to win in South Carolina. So instead of fighting for the 24 delegates in the Palmetto State, Romney is concentrating on Nevada's 31 delegates.
Shrewd move, Romney campaign, and I suspect that it will pay off in the end. You wouldn't have been the center of attention in South Carolina, anyway, so go steal Nevada, which you almost certainly will win with a little time in the state (although much more than any other GOP candidate) and a significant Mormon population to boot.
Will McCain's disappointing performance in Michigan cut into his lead in South Carolina? I can't see how it won't, but the big question is whether Thompson can make up enough ground (as he's got positive momentum and statistically polling in second place) to pass McCain by Saturday.
MORE: David Oatney weighs in and thumbs his nose at the media.
EVEN MORE: Bob Krumm comments on how Mike Huckabee getting creamed in Michigan could be the opening that Fred Thompson needs in South Carolina.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
Fredmentum is Real in South Carolina
Fred has pulled within the margin of error of second place, with Fred, Huckabee, and Romney all within a few points of each other. Fred has shown the only gains between the last two polls, with most of his new found momentum coming at the expense of Mike Huckabee, who is down nearly as much as Fred is up.
Michigan's primary results later on today will certainly alter the look of the landscape in South Carolina (either McCain falls back to the pack or Romney is toast), but Fred has to like where he is now. (I know that I like it when I'm in South Carolina...)
Blue Star Chronicles
Below the Beltway
Monday, January 14, 2008
Fred almost to $1 million goal
Here's an e-mail I received from Fred's campaign:
Because of your generosity we are $29,711 away from reaching our $1 million goal. Some FredHeads on the blog thought of a great way to make sure we meet our mark. At 10:00 local time give $10 to Fred's campaign.
If 2971 FredHeads give only $10 we will reach this important milestone and give Fred the resources to continue spreading his consistent conservative message in South Carolina, Florida, and across the Super Tuesday states.
So when 10:00 comes around add $10 to the red truck. You will have done your part to meet our $1 million goal and help Fred win the Republican nomination.
Please help Fred out--and thank you!
William B. Lacy
Heck, why not? I'll use the little box over at the left sidebar of this site and make another small contribution to Fred's efforts at 10:00 P.M., as hokey as it may be.
Of course, I suppose that my actual assistance in South Carolina - which I have offered to the campaign at no charge on four separate occasions - would probably have done a heck of a lot more good than my measly $10 addition, but I'm still waiting to hear from Fred's campaign on that one. Heck, I've been waiting for more months than I can count, and the offer was reissued directly after the Iowa results came to light.
And in there lies the problem with Fred's campaign, right? Tennessee has been one of the only states - heck, THE ONLY STATE in 2006 - that has mastered the way to win campaigns for the GOP in contested elections. Even when the tide is rising nationally against the GOP, Tennessee has stood above the fray with its hard-working, knowledgeable campaigns. However, Fred (for the most part) went outside of the Volunteer State when garnering his senior campaign staff. Their non-traditional campaign has been quite underwhelming, and that is probably being kind.
Eventually, GOP candidates will learn that there is much value to pulling campaign staff from Tennessee sources. (Obviously, Mike Huckabee was a quick study when he turned his ship over to Chip Saltsman, and I would bet that Huck probably thinks that was a good move given his better than expected performance to date.) Tennessee conservatives know what they're doing - from the college students who are learning the trade all the way to the senior staffers like Saltsman - and candidates that continue to use the same retread RNC plebes shouldn't be surprised when they have trouble connecting with voters.
Thursday, January 10, 2008
Don't Call It a Comeback - The South Carolina Debate
I gave Huckabee second, mostly because I doubt that most voters would care to look at his record, leaving his lies about raising taxes and the like unchallenged. Giuliani is also good at openly lying about his record at debates, and tonight was no exception.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
Speeches, Analysis After Clinton Wins New Hampshire
Since I critiqued the Republican speeches earlier tonight, it is only fair that I offer something on Clinton, Obama, and Edwards.
I'll let Professor Reynolds handle it, though. His analysis seems right on. However, I want to add that Edwards had the best spin of the night. After immediately stating that Obama had won Iowa and that Clinton had won New Hampshire, he decried,
"Two down, forty eight more to go!"
Yes, John, I know that you were trying to say that there are 48 more chances, taking an optimistic approach. However, to me (and to a few other political friends I spoke to nationally tonight), it sounded like you meant that there were 48 more losses, 48 more public beatings in your future.
Edwards went on to add that only 0.15% of the nation's population had voiced their preference for president. On this, I agree with Edwards. I'll write more in the next coming days, but consider me a convert to a national primary day approach for future presidential elections.
So where do we go from here now that New Hampshire is in the rearview?
- Mitt Romney has to win Michigan. Losses in Iowa and New Hampshire are not devastating, but defections amongst high profile supporters are inevitable given the large amounts of money and time that he put into those two states if he doesn't win Michigan, where his father was once governor. Check out Leon Wolf's analysis over at RedState for the views of a die-hard Romney supporter faced with his candidate's own political mortality.
- This win makes John McCain viable to Super Tuesday, but I encourage people not to get ahead of themselves as they did a few days ago when Mike Huckabee was all but assured of being the nominee because he convinced a few Iowa farmers that he was the most Christianity of the bunch. McCain needs to follow up with a solid performance in Michigan (which is possible), because he is unlikely to find much support in South Carolina, where his big draw is Senator Lindsey Graham, whose approval ratings in the Palmetto State are just slightly better than Hitler's and Genghis Khan's.
- If - and I said if - Romney wins Michigan by a decent margin with McCain second, South Carolina becomes an elimination match for Fred Thompson and Mike Huckabee. Only one of those candidates is walking out of Carolina with their 2008 hopes intact. Pejman over at RedState sees the GOP establishment, which is greatly splintered today, perhaps solidifying behind a candidate before South Carolina instead of letting a McCain-Huckabee match-up materialize.
- Ron Paul - upon the "discovery" of his past newsletters - is done. I'm not talking about for the Republican nomination. He never had a chance at that. I'm talking about as a possible third-party candidate. Americans will not come out in numbers to vote for bigotry.
- I still worry about Rudy Giuliani. He seems to be the best positioned candidate to me at this point. Of course, he's not very smart, as he proved Tuesday morning on CNN. There he was, in the face of polling that showed him battling Ron Paul for 4th amongst the also-rans, telling the CNN reporter about how hard he had worked in New Hampshire, how it was a priority state for his campaign, and how much money that his campaign had spent in the Granite State. Nothing like raising expectations in the face of an impending loss.
- I'm not going to comment on Hillary Clinton's base demographic. Apparently, it's women (sorry, ladies, but the exit polling is pretty convincing on this one) who think that a fake-crying candidate best represents their interests.
- Edwards should probably quit, but what else does he have to do for the rest of 2008?
- Richardson will be quitting today, hoping that he made a good enough impression for the second seat on the Democratic ticket.
- The race for the Democratic nomination will go on past Super Tuesday. And it could get bloody.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
Could Clinton Pull This Out?
Apparently, fake crying can save your campaign. CNN's never accurate exit polling shows that women who made up their mind since the staged crying episode broke by 49% to 31% for Clinton versus Obama, respectfully.
MORE: Sharon Cobb on Clinton's crocodile tears.
Mike Huckabee - Ugh. I think the pressure is getting to Huck. This was not a very good speech, and if I were Fred Thompson, I would latch on to Huck's soundbite where he said that New Hampshire hospitality was the equal to Southern hospitality. I'm sure South Carolinians would love to hear that Mike Huckabee thinks they are as polite as Yankee elitists. Having former South Carolina Governor Beasley on the stage with him might help a little in the Palmetto State. Maybe Mike should burn the Confederate flag at his rally in Greenville tomorrow...
John McCain - I think McCain says as much about Independents as anything. Apparently, Independents don't like to be inspired. If McCain is the poster child for Independents, then I wonder about the group as a whole. Lots of references to relativism by McCain, which is to be expected, I guess. I can't see how McCain could come within 10 points of either Democratic candidate, as he won't be able to drive turnout in the way that a Reagan could. Heck, I'm not sure if McCain comes within miles inspirationally of Bob Dole. Maybe that says as much as anything.
Meanwhile, it is 9:26 P.M., and Obama has finally started to pull closer to Clinton. Obama now trails by 2,300 votes. My prediction of a 9.1 point win for the Illinois Senator ain't looking too good with 41% of the precincts reporting.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Holy Crap! CNN Just Called NH for McCain!
Folks, I am not usually for government regulation of the press. However, I do see the argument for true election reform - in not allowing the mental midgets of the mainstream media to call races at ridiculously early intervals - as serving a legitimate government interest.
MORE: CNN is citing their exit polling. Were those conducted by the same exit pollsters who performed so flawlessly in 2000 in Florida and 2004 in Ohio?
Now I picked McCain earlier today, and I think that he's going to win New Hampshire when all the votes are counted. However, that doesn't excuse CNN's reckless brand of pseudo-journalism.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
Stop the Presses - An AP Reporter Writes about Fred!
Of course, since the polls just closed in New Hampshire, I wonder if anyone will read it...
OK, so I've been tagged...
1) Link to the person that tagged you, and post the rules on your blog.
2) Share 7 facts about yourself.
3) Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
4) Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
Seven Facts About Me
1) I only attended law school so that I could open a few more doors politically, as I never planned on practicing law.
2) If I didn't live in Tennessee, I would reside in South Carolina.
3) I can claim blood relation to King John of England (yes, the bad one of Robin Hood lore) and Julius Caesar (special thanks to my grandfather for doing the legwork on that claim).
4) I was the first person to be named Executive Editor of ETSU's newspaper who had never set foot in a journalism classroom, and I was the first male to graduate from ETSU's University Honors Program.
5) My dream jobs are 1) Congressman from Tennessee's 1st District, 2) Voice of the Vols, and 3) Chief of Staff for Congressman Jimmy Duncan. (So you better watch out, Rep. David Davis, Bob Kesling, and Bob Griffitts...)
6) My son is named after three great leaders - David, the King of Israel who united the people of Israel; Davy Crockett, Tennessee Congressman and one of the Tennessee Volunteers who came to Texas' aid in 1836; and Leonidas, King of Sparta and defender of democracy at the Battle of Thermopylae.
7) I like to think of myself as "frugal," but many people probably label me "cheap." I cut coupons out of the newspaper every Sunday, and rarely do Angela and I dine out without a coupon or special of some sort.
So now I have to tag another seven people. I guess I'll choose Vance Cheek, Truman Bean, David Oatney, Sharon Cobb, Nathan Moore, Bob Krumm, and Ben Cunningham.
News from the Democratic Side
1) In the wake of a big loss in New Hampshire, a major shake-up will be announced at the senior strategist-level of Hillary Clinton's campaign, in which she will bring in Paul Begala and James "The Ragin' Cajun" Carville.
Nothing like a little star power for these political races. Obama has Oprah. Huckabee has Chuck Norris. Fred Thompson has John Rich and Gretchen Wilson. Come tomorrow, Clinton will have Gollum.
2) Nevada's largest union, the Culinary Union, will endorse Obama tomorrow. This might cause Clinton to skip Nevada and concentrate on South Carolina and the Super Tuesday states.
3) Both rumors regarding Clinton's money situation - that she has $25 million in the bank but the recent lack of cash on hand could hurt her come Super Tuesday - are apparently false. She doesn't have the $25 million being reported, but the campaign has (wisely) prepaid for most of the major expenses that it will undertake between now and February 5th.
Just a few snippets from the other side of the aisle...
Fred Thompson on O'Reilly
Fred was strong and didn't placate O'Reilly. He refused to recognize Romney and Huckabee as actual conservatives (which they aren't - just read what Gabriel Malor had to write about Huckabee).
It appears that Fred's campaign is back on track. I just hope that it isn't too late, and with no frontrunner for the GOP, it may not be. Rudy Giuliani sure hopes it isn't, as he isn't going to even show up until January 29th in Florida. (For more on Giuliani's strategy, check out this article from today's Washington Times.)
New Hampshire Predictions
1) McCain (by 2.7 points)
1) Obama (by 9.1 points)
The weather is good in New Hampshire today, so turnout should be fairly good.
Many other pundits are starting to lean to Romney based on his performance in the debates this past weekend. I would love to believe that was true, but that would assume that people watch debates (they don't, especially when playoff football is on) and actually pay attention to such things as debate performance, voting records, endorsements from interest groups, etc.
If my projections come to fruition, both Romney and Clinton are in trouble, having burned through incredible amounts of money while going 0-for-2. Romney would be the first man from Massachusetts to run for POTUS and not win neighboring New Hampshire. Michigan (with its reduced delegate amounts) will probably boost Romney, as his father was Governor of Michigan several decades ago, although it remains to be see whether anyone even notices Michigan this year due to its status as being punished for moving its primary into January.
This should leave no frontrunner for the GOP and one solid frontrunner for the Democrats in Obama. With Duncan Hunter having a decent amount of grassroots organization in South Carolina, I don't see anyone getting out on the GOP side before the results are known in the Palmetto State. We'll see if Mike Gravel and Dennis Kucinich stay in to see Nevada.
Monday, January 07, 2008
President to Decide on Unconstitutional Earmarks
Funny, I thought that Congress would have to vote on such things. Perhaps Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution might say something to that consequence.
If the President issues the executive order, he will be enforcing the legislative process the Constitution says we must follow. If the President does not issue the executive order, he will be rewarding Congress for ignoring the Constitution.
RedState is coordinating an effort to let President Bush know how you feel about what amounts to a referendum on the rule of law. They ask that you either call the President at 202-456-1111 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell him to strike the unconstitutional earmarks in the spending bill and uphold the rule of law in this country.
MORE: As an aside - RedState is raising funds to create a better site, capable of organizing actual conservatives nationally. RedState is the real deal, and we would all be better if their plan comes to fruition. Of course, the Left is trying to destroy RedState by making their plans financially unfeasible. That alone should tell you that this is a worthy cause...
Romney, Thompson, Hunter take Delegates in Wyoming
What I think is noteworthy, though, is that GOP candidates Mike Huckabee, John McCain, and Rudy Giuliani didn't even visit Wyoming leading up to the caucus.
Yet, it is Fred Thompson, who did pay Wyoming a visit, that biased media types from Fox News to Politico have labeled as lazy. It seems that not even bothering to campaign in a state when you are supposedly in a national campaign would qualify as lazy. Yet, no such label has been placed on Giuliani, Huckabee, or McCain.
And don't bother to give me the line that the trio didn't make the trip because they didn't think they could win there. Fred spent the weekend in New Hampshire when he knew he wasn't going to come out of single digits in that non-conservative bastion. He could have headed to South Carolina early. He didn't. Why? Because he isn't lazy, folks.
Just remember these sort of facts before repeating urban legends as fact - especially urban legends manufactured by those who have much personally to gain from the acceptance of those legends.
Labels: 2008 GOP Presidential Primary
The New Hampshire Debates
Here are some of my thoughts, especially in the wake of some of the horrendous accounts by the AP that completely misrepresented what happened:
WINNER: Fred Thompson. Before anyone calls "homer," I want to point to my other debate recaps this year. Not once have I even come close to saying that Fred Thompson won a debate. In fact, I gave nearly every debate to Mike Huckabee thus far. Not these debates. Not even close. Fred was "the adult in the room," letting the other candidates snipe and barb while he talked about what he wants to do for America in dealing with our problems with energy production, illegal immigration, and national defense. Like Steve Gill and other "FredHeads," I have been frustrated with a horrible campaign that has held back a great candidate. After this weekend, that frustration was replaced with pride in my former boss. Fred kicked butt. Heck, even George Stephanopolous gave this one to Fred. That's got to count for something.
SECOND PLACE: Ron Paul. I thought Dr. Paul performed quite well, even cracking a few jokes that showed his human side. His argument for return to the gold standard wasn't specific enough in my view (yes, I understand it, but the average voter who might be up in the air might not), but he did well.
LOSER: Rudolph Giuliani. Giuliani was pushed to the side this weekend, overshadowed by the sniping of McCain, Romney, and Huckabee and the substantive answers of Thompson and Paul. He was left on the outside looking in, perhaps wishing that Tom Tancredo and Duncan Hunter were there to spar with. Giuliani is going through the motions right now, holding out for Super Tuesday, so this weekend shouldn't hurt him too much in the long run. However, it sure didn't help, either.
THREE-WAY TUSTLE: The rest of the candidates were more involved in trashing each other than providing actual ideas to voters as to how they would deal with the problems of America. Everyone piled on Huckabee, which is to be expected after Iowa. What surprised me is that Huckabee seemed to wilt under the pressure, giving the worst debate performances I have ever seen him deliver (not just limited to this campaign). Taking down Huckabee was certainly the secondary goal for McCain and Romney, though, as they are within the margin of error of each other for taking New Hampshire's top spot. Given the Granite State audience that was listening (progressive white elites), I thought that Romney got the better of McCain overall. McCain seemed aloof when one would have expected fire, evasive when there was no need to be. Of the three, I thought Romney got the better of the exchanges. Will it be enough to win New Hampshire and save Romney's candidacy? We'll know tomorrow.
Meanwhile, with this morning's latest poll showing Obama up double-digits over Clinton in New Hampshire, one has to wonder if the Democratic Primary might be over before it begins. One of my best friends - who to this election cycle has been a loyal Republican - is helping run Obama's campaign in South Carolina, and they were extremely confident in Obama's chances to take the Palmetto State before he took Iowa. If Obama goes three-for-three, Clinton's campaign officially kicks into crisis mode, as she would need a near sweep on Super Tuesday to salvage her campaign. And that sweep just isn't going to happen. As George Will writes this morning, we may be seeing the last of the Clinton's as they relate to the White House.
Friday, January 04, 2008
Quick Takes on the Iowa Caucus
So where does that leave us? Well, besides those who were declared the winners...
BIG WINNER: The Democrats - At least it was a big night for Democrats who actually want to win in November. With Obama's victory, the aura of invincibility that once illuminated from the campaign of Hillary Clinton is gone. Obama's supporters - many of whom were laying back in the weeds waiting to see if he was viable in the face of the coronation of Queen Hillary - may come forth in force heading into New Hampshire and, more importantly, South Carolina. Having a potential nominee that is not Hillary greatly increases the Democrats' chances of victory in November. Add the youthful draw of Obama and disarray in the GOP field and you have one great night for the Democrats.
WINNERS: Fred Thompson and John McCain - Despite sourceless rumors spread by certain Internet "journalists" and mainstream sources, these men are still in this race. However, Thompson's third-place finish and McCain's fourth-place finish are only good enough to get them to the next two primaries. McCain looks to be in good shape as Romney (McCain's real competition) may be in real trouble before all of the field even assembles in New Hampshire Friday. Fred will try to put on a good show in New Hampshire prior to his first Southern stand in South Carolina. Both men have to win those respective primaries to see Super Tuesday. I think there is a good chance that both will be alive and kickin' come February 5th.
BIGGEST LOSER: Mitt Romney - You can't allocate the resources that Romney did in one state and then lose to a guy you outspent, outorganized, and outworked. Unless Mitt can pull out New Hampshire, his candidacy may shockingly be shot before we reach Super Tuesday. His money may allow him to stick around for a while, but he won't be viable unless he can turn this downslide around.
LOSER: Politico.com - I like Jonathan Martin and have enjoyed working with him in the past. I want to get that out of the way right off the bat. However, their attempts to sink Fred Thompson by spreading rumors which appear to be planted from rival campaigns stinks to high heaven. RedState has assailed Politico relentlessly, and conservatives have taken notice. I doubt that any true conservative will ever believe anything coming out of Politico.com ever again. (But they can look on the bright side - CNN will love them now.)
LOSER: Rudy Giuliani - Sorry, Rudy, but a real frontrunner should be able to use minimal effort to at least compete with your rivals in a state that isn't exactly the most conservative in the Union. Geez, Rudy, you only had 1/3 of the votes of Ron Paul, and Paul ran a distant fifth. I guess you should be glad to have beaten Duncan Hunter, huh? And it wasn't like you wrote off Iowa, because you blew quite a bit of money on direct mail, radio ads, and staff in the state. Either you were wasting money or you thought you could do better than you did. I know that you are putting all of your eggs in the Florida basket for Super Tuesday, but you risk being a campaign afterthought by trying to break so late. A very risky, strange strategy...
LOSER: John Edwards - Congrats to Edwards on beating Hillary for second place, but given John's money issues (and the coming flood of donations that are sure to flood Obama Headquarters this morning), he really needed to win here. If Obama obtains rock star status, the lines of cash that would normally accompany a ticket out of Iowa may not be usable by Edwards, and his campaign will be starved to death before we see Nevada later this month.
OBVIOUS LOSERS: Chris Dodd and Joe Biden - When the first contest forces you to disband your campaign... It's a shame that Biden is gone, though, as he was actually telling the truth every once in a while during the debates. Without Joe, there will be a definite lack of refreshing moments in future Democratic debates.
SO-SO: Ron Paul - Hey, Ron showed that he could be Giuliani in at least one state. That's a positive. However, all of that Internet money and Internet buzz didn't really translate to an exhibition of support on the ground. Ron did better than I thought he would, but I think this might be where he peaks against the rest of the field. Did anyone have higher expectations? Oh yeah, that's right. A.C. Kleinheider had Paul finishing third, over Thompson and McCain. Heh heh...
POTENTIALLY CATASTROPHIC LOSER: The Christian Right - One after another, from Bill Bennett to Rush Limbaugh to Fred Barnes last night, conservative commentator after conservative commentator agreed on one thing - if the Christian Right propels Mike Huckabee to the nomination, blindly ignoring his horrible record on raising taxes, backroom deals, and illegal immigration, the prospect of a Democratic President becomes an almost certainty. Rush, Bill, and the rest also believe that this will be the end of the Christian Right's place as the GOP's base. Quite frankly, it would be deserved, as one group shouldn't bear the burden of leadership if it doesn't want to pay the consequences when it is wrong.
But NOT SO FAST...
Iowa's caucus format hasn't been the most accurate predictor of success at the party conventions. Neither has New Hampshire (which has a considerably worse record than Iowa, actually). Things really kick-off when we get to South Carolina, which has correctly predicted the Republican nominee every election cycle since my birth. Lose the Palmetto State at your own peril.
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
"Time to Step Up, Fred"
Now Limbaugh wants him to take the reigns and win back the White House.
Townhall.com has the column, and it's a good read. I certainly hope that everyone - especially those in Iowa - give Limbaugh a few minutes to plead his case.
Wicker to Replace Lott
Save the GOP provides the following ratings on Wicker:
- 0% rating from NARAL indicating a staunchly pro-life voting record
- 97% rating fro US COC indicating a pro-business voting record
- 17% rating from the NEA which means they don’t like him and that is a good thing
- 100% rating from Christian Coalition
- 33% rating from CATO which indicates a mixed record on trade issues
- A+ rating from NRA
- 100% rating from FAIR which means he is awesome on cracking down on illegal immigration
- 0% rating from AFL-CIO
- 59% rating from National Taxpayers Union which is a “satisfactory” rating based on their scale
Doesn't sound too bad when you look at it that way. (A 0% rating by the NEA would have been better - LOL.) Wicker appears to be solidly pro-life, pro-gun, and anti-illegal immigration. Those are all great. However, like Save the GOP, I have a few worries when it comes to expanding government bureaucracy. There's nothing conservative about that.
Overall, though, not a bad pick for Mississippi's new Senator.
Baby Pictures - Take Three
Mimi (Maternal Grandmother) with Leo
Mother and Son (Big Orange down to his toes!)
Mama's Lil Reindeer, Ready to go Home
Leo Comes Home
Baby Pictures - Take Two
Father and Son
Dad's Lil Vol - Supporting the Big Orange from Day One!
Proudly Announcing Our Arrival
Mother and Son
Dad Updating Son on the Iowa Caucus
Baby Pictures - Take One
Angela Before Heading to the Hospital
Leonidas in his First Minute Post-Birth
Leo Calmly Laying in Minute #2
Mother and Child
Trying to Get Settled at Home
Second, I apologize for not blogging more, but Leo has suffered through two tough nights at home (his first two away from the hospital), and sleep has been at a premium.
Third, I will post a few pictures of my pride and joy in a couple of posts this afternoon.
Hope everyone is having a great start to 2008!