Here am I in the NRECA center where I used to attend Arlington County Republican Committee meetings and after some audio difficulties the debate is about to begin.
Does this moderator know what he’s doing? He forget to ask the candidate who won the coin toss (Murray) to deliver his opening statement and thought it was time for questions. Now, Murray is speaking, reminding us of the election of MIke Lane to the Arlington Country Board, the last Republican to win election in this jurisdiction–and the last campaign on which I worked in the Commonwealth.
He’s telling us about the 151 precincts in this district and talking about his momentum. He says, “Send me to Congress and we’ll spend within our means.” His delivery is kind of flat. Kind of? Well, very flat.
Matthew rises to speak, thanking us for coming out. He is far more animated than his rival, salutes the Republican Jewish Coalition, the lead sponsor of this event, saying “If there’s one group” that Jim Moran wouldn’t like. He says he decided to run to give the 8th District the kind of campaign it hasn’t had. He says what he’s going to do, end TARP, returning the money to the taxpayer, end earmarks. He says he comes from three generations of entrepreneurs, reminding us what his father said about the worst words he could here, “I’m from the government, I’m here to help you.”
He says he’ll cut the corporate tax rate and oppose card check. Interestingly, he’s not distinguishing himself from his Republican rival, but instead showing how he differs from the Democrat he’s going to beat in November. Much more specific than his rival and the applause was far more sustained. (more…)
Two polls show my gal Carly surging in the race to take on Barbara “Call Me Ma’am” Boxer. According to Public Policy Polling, Fiorina has “opened up a 20 point lead with 41% to 21% for Tom Campbell and 16% for Chuck DeVore“:
Carly Fiorina’s superior resources always had the potential to blow her opponents for the California Republican Senate nomination out of the water, and in the closing stretch that appears to be exactly what’s happening.
And Public Policy isn’t the only poll which shows Carly surging. According to a “new SurveyUSA polling conducted for KABC-TV Los Angeles, KPIX-TV San Francisco, KGTV-TV San Diego, and KFSN-TV Fresno“:
. . . support for former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina is up sharply in the past 2 weeks, from 24% on 05/10/10 to 46% today 05/24/10. Fiorina’s support has more than doubled among women, seniors, Hispanics, the less educated, and in the Inland Empire. During these 2 weeks, Former Congressman Tom Campbell’s support dropped 12 points, from 35% on 05/10/10 to 23% today 05/24/10.
Now that people are finally paying attention in this contest, the choice is becoming clearer to Golden State Republicans.
UPDATE: A third poll now shows the same thing:
A new Magellan Strategies poll in California confirms other recent surveys which show Carly Fiorina (R) has surged into the lead for the Republican Senate nomination.
Fiorina leads with 44%, while Tom Campbell (R) is at 21% and Chuck DeVore is at 14%.
President Barack Obama on the Tonight Show, March 2009:
And one of the things that I’m trying to break is a pattern in Washington where everybody is always looking for somebody else to blame. And I think Geithner is doing an outstanding job. I think that we have a big mess on our hands. It’s not going to be solved immediately, but it is going to get solved. And the key thing is for everybody just to stay focused on doing the job instead of trying to figure out who you can pass blame on to.
Chris Stirewalt on the Administration’s reaction to the Gulf Oil Spill just over a year later:
But with news about the laxity at the Mineral Management Service and in the Interior Department, it looks like the White House may be turning back to one of its favorite enemies – Dick Cheney.
Maureen Dowd tells us: “One West Wing official admits that, even with all the crises they were juggling, they should have acted more urgently to re-examine the dark legacy of Cheney in the Energy and Interior Departments.”
And since a new Pew poll shows that a quarter of Democrats and half of all adults think the president could have done more, Darth Vader makes a politically convenient target to at least rally his base back to Obama’s side.
Targeting the Bush administration when the president’s appointee has been running the regulatory agency for 11 months may be kind of thin gruel, but this is, as they would say, is crisis communications.
Read more at the Washington Examiner:
After a wonderful few days in the Big Apple and its suburbs, I’m heading down to my old haunts in and around our nation’s capital later this afternoon.
I encourage you to join me tonight at the debate between the first candidate we endorsed in this cycle, Matthew Berry and Patrick Murray, his rival for the Republican nomination to take out Democrat Jim Moran in Virginia’s Eighth Congressional District.
This debate follows the regular monthly meeting of the Arlington County Republican Committee, starting at 8 PM in the NRECA Conference Center, 4301 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington [Ballston]. This at North Taylor Street near the Ballston-MU Metro station. For a map, go to www.arlingtongop.org. There is free parking in NRECA garage. (Enter from North Taylor Street.)
And afterwards, we will retreat to a local watering hole where the candidate will be joining us.
To RSVP for (or ask about) any of these events, just e-mail me.
Tomorrow night, Thursday May 27, some bloggers are holding a Happy Hour in my honor in the district. You’re welcome to join us for that and a dinner to follow. For location and to RSVP, just e-mail me.
Via a comment caught in our spam filter (“since rescued), I come across a new gay blog with a great name which applies to your humble bloggers as well as many of our readers: The Heterodox Homosexual.
Wish I’d've thunk of that one!
Now this fellow makes clear that he’s not a gay conservative (here as well), but he does offer some perspectives in line with things we’ve said here. Having perused his blog, I will say that while I don’t always share his perspective, I do appreciate his insights. He is truly heterodox in the sense that he didn’t offer the groupthink mindlessly repeated on the gay left even if he occasionally borrows their lingo.
And I like the way he approaches the conversation on gay marriage:
Our relationships have worth that doesn’t need affirmation from big government. Also, government has neither the power nor the moral right to make people like us; rather, it can and should give us equal freedom. . . .
The magical piece of paper is neither necessary nor sufficient for a lasting, committed relationship. Some same-sex couples have been together for decades without it. Some straight marriages have gone down the toilet almost immediately.
Obsessed with that magical piece of paper, one left-wing blogger could learn a thing or two from this guy.
Keep an eye on this heterodox homosexual. He definitely has something to add to the conversation.
Okay, so there appears to be a really big break in an issue which greatly concerns me when I have little time to address. In between losing to my fifth eldest nephew in Ping Pong and celebrating with my third eldest niece who just become Bat Mitzvah, I have been having heart-to-hearts with my baby sister and talking myth with my mother while connecting with my older sister and reconnecting with college friends in New Jersey and having a wonderful dinner with a guy I dated in 1995 (who now lives in the Big Apple), we learn that the Administration has reached a compromise on repealing Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell as Nick reported here.
From what little I’ve read, my evaluation is that while this may not be an ideal solution, it does appear to be a step in the right direction. Left-of-center blogress Pam Spaulding offers a somewhat skeptical perspective here and here.
Jimmy LaSalvia, Executive Director of GOProud,
. . . urges conservatives in the House and Senate to support the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ repeal compromise that was reached yesterday. While this compromise isn’t perfect, it does take an important first step in removing the Clinton-era ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy and returns the decision-making authority for the policy regarding gay service to the Department of Defense and the Commander-in-Chief.
We believe strongly that Congress should not be involved in micro-managing military personnel decisions. Those decisions should be made by our military leaders – not by opportunistic politicians.
At the end of the day, conservatives should support a policy that best serves our men and women in uniform and our national security, and this compromise will insure that such a policy is implemented.
Seem that at least one Republican will be voting in favor of repeal.
In the coming days, let’s hope some reporters ferret out how this came to pass. Looks like someone in the Administration is committed to doing the right thing. And keeping the promises candidate Obama made on the campaign trail.
Following a story that the White House is in discussions today with Capitol Hill leaders discussing moving forward with a repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Possible action by the end of the week.
Will Charles Djou get there in time to help lead Republicans in voting for repeal?
More details to come.
-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from a Secret Undisclosed Alternate HQ)
UPDATE: Reading a little more on the tactics, it looks as though Congress would pass, and likely President Obama would sign, within the Defense Authorization Bill for this year, a provision that repeals the ban, but it would be written so as to not take effect until 90 days after the Pentagon submits its report on the policy, due out sometime in December.
The confusing point here is that, in order to repeal the DADT policy, a repeal is required of a portion of Title 10 US Code. I’m not an expert in law or legislation, so I’m not sure if there’s a way to pass a law to change US Code, but make its implementation contingent on the Pentagon’s report. How do you write that?
The following law is repealed, you know, contingent on whether a report that’s coming out in December sometime says what we want it to say. But if it does look like we’re hoping, this is the change we want to make: …
I have every reason to believe the Pentagon’s report is going to be favorable to repeal. But I just don’t know how you can write legislation contingent on it.
Then again, this is a body that passes legislation without even reading it (and tried to pass laws without voting on them), so I wouldn’t put anything past them.
I doubt I’ll have much time to write about the victory of Charles Djou in the special election to represent the congressional district where the president was born. While many Democrats think they will be able to win the seat back given that the Republican won only a 39.4% plurality as Democrats Colleen Hanabusa and Ed Case divided the Democratic vote, gathering 58.4% combined, they forget that Djou has roots in the district and that voters just might give a new Congressman the benefit of the doubt come November.
All that said, it’s important to note that Djou supports repeal of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell (DADT). Now, with a Republican certain to have a high profile in Washington on the record in favor of repeal, perhaps he can try to win over some members of his partisan caucus.
With Speaker Pelosi eager to carry water for an Administration increasingly reluctant to move forward on repeal, it’s going to take a coalition of congressional backbenchers to move the issue.
And maybe it will be unusual coalitions with Republicans like Djou and Democrats concerned with keeping a promise to a core constituency and to doing the right thing.
At the conclusion of his piece on the rise of Republicans born, like the president, since 1960, Matthew Continetti observes
The ultimate irony is that President Obama, 48, is not only part of the generational turn, he’s accelerating it. Obama promised a new politics, but his inexperience and ideology led him to cede power to the archons in Congress, experts in the old way of doing things. The liberal lions gloried in the return of the transactional welfare politics of their youth, but the public quickly soured on their policies. So the liberal restoration is bittersweet. Obama gave the old liberals one last chance to enact a decades-old agenda. But the future belongs to Sean Duffy.
Emphasis added. In many ways, that is the ultimate irony of Obama’s success. He ran as a new kind of politician, yet has devoted his Administration to enacting items on the Democrats’ long-time wish list. And his solution to every problem is the same old solution Democrats have been offering for the past 78 years–more government spending, increasing centralization, a greater amount of federal regulation.
Contrast this with Reagan’s appeal thirty years ago. He may have been the oldest man ever elected to the White House, yet he had great appeal among the young of his era, those now rising to the political fore, as per Continetti’s piece. He offered a bold new idea, but one rooted an ideal upon which this nation was built: freedom.
Barack Obama, by contrast, hasn’t offered any new ideas, just touted his as a better persona than the typical politician. But, persona comes from the Latin word for mask. And once Obama’s mask has been removed, we see the same old, same old big government ideas.
The headline says it all: Obama campaigning against Bush–again. That’s not quite what Mark Critz did when he won John Murtha’s seat in southwestern Pennyslvania. He campaigned against Obama’s agenda.
That Democrat distanced himself from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. As Michael Barone put it, “Critz was helped by his conservative stands on health care, guns and cap-and-trade“. Seems that Democrat’s winning formula is not one which embraces the Democrats’ governing agenda.
Yet, for President Obama, he’s returning to the same old formula which served him so well in 2008: run against George W. Bush. Now, while in 2010 as in 2008, W is not on the ballot, there is one big difference that just might have escaped Mr. Obama’s attention–it sure hasn’t escaped ours. Mr. Bush isn’t in the White House any more. He has in fact made himself quite scarce since he left that Washington residence.
As Carol Lee reports in the article linked above:
President Barack Obama is trying to ride the wave of anti-incumbency by taking on an unpopular politician steeped in the partisan ways of Washington.
It doesn’t matter that George W. Bush left office 16 months ago.
The White House’s mid-term election strategy is becoming clear – pit the Democrats of 2010 against the Republicans circa 2006, 2008 and 2009, including Bush.
And Democrats accuse us of being the party of “no”. They’re in power now and still running against George Bush. (more…)
The prejudiced views of the chattering classes notwithstanding, rank-and-file Republicans in Northern Virginia are willing to back a gay conservative vying for the GOP nomination to take on a corrupt and entrenched opponent.
At the 8th District (Virginia) Republican convention yesterday, GayPatriot-endorsed candidate Matthew Berry won a straw poll, defeating his Republican rival “by a margin of 69% to 31%.” And please note the Republicans who turn out for such gatherings tend to be more conservative than the average GOP voter.
According to the campaign, Saturday’s
. . . win comes on the heels of yesterday’s announcement that the Matthew Berry for Congress campaign has been officially named to the “On the Radar” tier of the National Republican Congressional Committee’s Young Guns program. This program works closely with Republican campaigns in hotly contested races across the country to elevate them from good to great to victory.
This all goes to show that rank-and-file Republicans are willing to support a gay candidate provided he’s sound on the issues as is Matthew. A principled conservative, Matthew seeks to hold the line on federal spending, indeed, in reducing the size and scope of government (at all levels).
Join me in supporting his campaign. Click here to make a donation.
Just one last reminder about our dinner in New York tonight, Sunday, May 23. Looks like it’ll be somewhere near Grand Central at about 7 PM. Please let me know if you can join me in the Big Apple.
While waiting for my brother-in-law and checking my accumulated e-mail, I caught this in James Taranto’s Best of the Web:
But we have argued for years against the pernicious practice of falsely imputing racism to one’s opponents in order to discredit them–a practice so common among liberals that entire academic subspecialties are devoted to it.
That does seem to be the main purpose of imputing racism to the Tea Party protesters. Unwilling to address the concerns they raise, their critics resort to mean-spirited slurs.
Perhaps when I have a moment, I might try to probe their “need” to call their opponents racist, you know, as some would do in an “academic discipline.”
Over the past few weeks, I have become increasingly pessimistic about the prospects for DADT repeal in the coming year. Earlier in the year, seeing the Administration taking the necessary first steps toward repeal, I had thought they were developing a strategy, first to get the military brass on board, then to push repeal through Congress.
Seemed things were moving in the right direction.
Right now, however, DADT repeal just doesn’t seem it’s a priority for this president. Part of the problem is that his team wants to use the time his party has such big majorities to push forward their big government initiatives, expanding the power of the state while they have the chance. DADT repeal doesn’t further that end. Indeed, it actually limits the power of the state rather than increases it.
Not just that, the president’s party has nothing to gain politically by repeal.
Democrats know they won’t lose the gay vote if they betray this promise to the gay community. Joe Solmonese won’t be any less enthusiastic in his support for the Democratic Party or any less obsequious in his obeisance to and admiration of Obama if his fellow partisan continues to offer only lip service and make token gestures (including extending White House invitations to) the gay community.
In her piece on gay conservatives for the Washington Blade, new GOProud board member Jessica Lee pretty much sums it up:
“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is the most dramatic and disappointing example of the Democrats’ failure. Despite overwhelming public support for repeal, Congress is at an impasse on the issue and the administration of our “fierce advocate,” despite his promise to repeal, is now urging Congress not to vote for repeal this year.
It is clear the gay community is taken for granted by the Democratic Party. No matter how much money we give them or how many doors we knock on for their candidates our issues are never a priority. And not until we make Democrats compete for our money and our votes will they be.
Early Friday afternoon, after I rounded a bend heading east on I-80 in New Jersey, I looked up and saw the skyline of Manhattan and I smiled, recalling that almost exactly five days earlier — on the preceding Sunday, I had driven past the skyline of downtown Los Angeles as I headed east.
It was a pretty cool feeling, not diminished by the fact that this is now my eighth such trek across the country (so far three times round-trip and the drive I made when I moved to LA plus this one).
Of course, just a few minutes after looking forward to an early arrival at my sister’s, I encountered bumper-t0-bumper traffic leading up to the George Washington Bridge. My sister had told me to tune into AM 1010 for traffic updates and I learned that I had a 30-minute wait. Just about 28 minutes later, I pulled into the tollbooth. Maybe 20 minutes after that I was with her family.
30 minutes later, my fifth eldest nephew beat me at Ping Pong.
And while I didn’t have the time to stop and see the scenery as I had on past journeys, I did get to see family and friends, including my oldest nephew, now a Lieutenant in the Air Force as well as a friend from my College Republican days and a classmate from grad school. I liked the combination of family as well as my political and mythological relationships.
Not to mention the chance I had to meet some of our readers in the Windy City.
The first time I did such a drive, I saw fewer friends and more scenery, discovering three national parks, Zion, Sequoia and Yosemite — and going on some pretty amazing hikes. (more…)
Thanks to Facebook, I reconnected yesterday with a friend I knew from my days in College Republicans, back in the Abramoff era. I believe the last time we saw each other was at the Gipper’s second inaugural.
We met at a delightful diner in Kingston, PA, immediately adjacent to Wilkes-Barre. At Tony’s, the welcome was warm and the food tasty. And, well, the politics was largely to my liking. Take a gander at the fridge:
So, the next time you’re in the Wilkes-Barre area, make sure to stop by. The food is good–and by LA standards, really quite inexpensive and the politics are just right.
So, Rand Paul has a great week, by easily winning the Republican nomination for Senate from Kentucky over a much better funded and connected establishment opponent. Well, a great week, until he stepped into a shitstorm over a law nearly as old as he is:
In an interview Wednesday with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Paul was asked whether he believed private businesses should have the right to refuse service to African-Americans.
“Yes,” Paul said. “I’m not in favor of any discrimination of any form. … But I think what’s important about this debate is not written into any specific ‘gotcha’ on this, but asking the question: what about freedom of speech? Should we limit speech from people we find abhorrent? Should we limit racists from speaking?”
Now, I’m not a racist, so I don’t even know what sort of mindset it takes to consider someone unworthy based on his race. That likely comes from my upbringing here in the Western US. The pioneer spirit still lives out here, and as part of it, a belief that cooperation and hard work are much more productive, and therefore desirable, than concerns and hang-ups about anybody’s differences. This upbringing of mine leaves me vexed when I encounter an actual racist, and is likely why I’m last onboard to classify someone as racist based on anything other than obvious and blatant action clearly identified as having its genesis in racist beliefs. (For example, while I often find them sophomoric and unfunny, racist jokes don’t usually offend me outright, even though they don’t generally entertain me either.)
All that said, is it possible for someone to object to the Civil Rights Act’s restrictions on private business and private property without being viewed as a racist? Clearly the lunatic Left has registered their vote. But as I read news on the kefuffle over Paul, all of it seems to be based on the premise that there is no acceptance whatsoever for criticizing the Civil Rights Act in any way, and doing so means you’re a racist. Why is that?
-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from an Undisclosed Secret Alternate HQ)
Please let me know if you can join me in New York this coming Sunday the 23rd for a GayPatriot dinner in the Big Apple.
Our DC dinner will be next Thursday, May 27th.
On the preceding day, I’ll be at the debate between the first candidate we endorsed in this cycle, Matthew Berry and Patrick Murray, his rival for the Republican nomination to take out Democrat Jim Moran in Virginia’s Eighth Congressional District.
This debate follows the regular monthly meeting of the Arlington County Republican Committee, starting at 8 PM in the NRECA Conference Center, 4301 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington [Ballston]. This is right at North Taylor Street near the Ballston-MU METRO station. For a map, go to www.arlingtongop.org. There is free parking in NRECA garage. (Enter from North Taylor Street.)
And afterwards, we may retreat to a local watering hole to celebrate Matthew’s victory.
To RSVP for (or ask about) any of these events, just e-mail me.
Observing that the new “speaker of the State Assembly, John Perez. . . appointed the assembly leader, even though he had been in office for only a year” was off golfing to raise money for special interest groups when the Governor unveiled his budget”, Sonicfrog quips:
Yes, he’s the Speaker of the Assembly, yet he doesn’t even know that May 14th is a specific deadline to submit a budget revision. Walters goes on to expose that this Assembly Speaker is in his own world when it comes to common sense. So, how does California end up selecting such an inexperienced person to occupy the highest seat in its Assembly? It could be his strong ties to labor, but that’s not quite enough.
Well, he is gay, but he does, as Sonic notes, have strong ties to the state’s unions. Oh, and L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa just happens to be his uncle.
Just read the whole thing. It seems that our state Democratic leaders may play identity politics in electing speakers from various minority groups, but they all have one thing in common: they toe the Democratic Party line:
Did I forget to mention that our politicians tend to be petty and vindictive if you step out of the party line? Bass kicked fellow Dem, Central Valley Representative Nicole Para to the curb, literally, for refusing to vote yes for a flawed budget that she knew would lead to a bigger budget deficit, and that did nothing to fix the growing water crisis here in the Central Valley.
It is wonderful the progress we’ve made in including people from various minority groups in our state’s political leadership. It would be nice if Democrats could also include those offering viewpoints at odds with the powers that be in their party’s establishment.
. . . but did discuss it with Mexico’s president?
Byron York has the scoop:
When President Obama discussed the new Arizona immigration law with Mexican President Felipe Calderon at the White House Wednesday, he was doing something he has never done with the governor of Arizona. Although Obama has repeatedly criticized the law, he has not once talked about it with Gov. Jan Brewer, nor is any such discussion in the works.
And get this:
This week John Morton, head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, told the Chicago Tribune his bureau might refuse to act in the cases of illegal immigrants found under the Arizona law because the statute is not “good government.”
The bottom line is that Obama, the Justice Department, and the entire executive branch are on Mexico’s side in this dispute. On the other hand, the majority of the American people are with Arizona; a recent Wall Street Journal poll found that 64 percent of Americans support the law.
That means that Morton is considering refusing to perform the legally-mandated work of his agency. Let me repeat, an Administration official may flout federal law. Wonder if the media will pay his defiance as much heed as they would when they accused Republican Administration’s of flouting the law.
Now, I have my problems with the Arizona legislation. I don’t like it, but believe the elected officials acted in their state’s address when the addressed the growing problem of crime in their state in this manner.
Still, don’t you think the president of the United States should talk to the governor of the state to see what elected officials in her state thought it was necessary before mouthing off on the topic.