Tag Archives: campaign

Trump’s real weakness

While Donald Trump has remained the leader in every poll for president since he entered the campaign, it still remains to be seen whether Republican voters will give him the nod when actual voting begins in the primaries. I have tended to believe that they will not, and I base this on Trump’s essential lack of understanding of the small government principles of conservatism. Though it is very clear that Trump has rejected the left and the big government ideas of the Democratic Party, it is also clear that he really doesn’t really believe in small government either. This story quoting a Trump speech from yesterday illustrates this very well:

Speaking during a town hall meeting in Iowa Thursday, Republican front-runner Donald Trump told the crowd the way to make college affordable for students is “to start some governmental program. … Well the only way you can do it is you have to start some governmental program and you have governmental programs right now,” Trump told the crowd.

Click on the link to read the whole quote, which also illustrates the generally incoherent way in which Trump speaks. His incoherency however, is not what hurts him here, but his easy acceptance of the idea that government is the solution.

Don’t get me wrong. Trump is by far a better candidate than any of the Democratic Party options, and he would do a far better job then them as well. His business experience in the real world will make him a better president, and is also likely the reason he now generally favors conservative solutions. Nonetheless, when voting time comes I think the Republican voters are going to move away from him.

Anti-establishment non-politicians top Iowa poll

I normally don’t bother reporting on polls. They are notoriously unreliable and often force one to the wrong conclusions. Nonetheless, this poll appears significant because it indicates that it isn’t just Trump that the voters are turning to in their disgust of the establishment political elite community.

First, it is the first poll since late July that does not show Trump with a lead. Instead, Ben Carson ties him. Second, Carly Fiorina with 10% and Ted Cruz with 9% come in second and third.

Finally, and most important, Bush, Kasich, and Rubio, politicians who have demonstrated by their actions that once elected they cannot be trusted get little or no support.

For months I have strongly believed that Jeb Bush was going to go nowhere once the voting began. The Republican base does not want another Bush. Similarly, Rubio’s betrayal of the tea party voters who got him elected by his support of the Gang of Eight comprehensive immigration bill is well remembered by those tea party voters. They do not trust him.

Instead, I believe that it will be reliable conservatives or brash outsides like Cruz, Fiorina, Carson, and Trump who will get the votes. This poll suggests I might be right.

Having said this, I must emphasize again my mistrust of polls. It is just as likely this poll is a waste, and tells us nothing.

One liberal pundit proposes that Democrats embrace Obamacare in the coming election campaign.

One liberal pundit proposes that Democrats embrace Obamacare in the coming election campaign.

Here’s a heretical idea. Rather than parsing the individual elements of the law, and trying to persuade voters on an à la carte basis, what about raising the stakes and defending the reform in its entirety as a historic effort to provide affordable health-care coverage to tens of millions of hard-working Americans who otherwise couldn’t afford it? Instead of shying away from the populist and redistributionist essence of the reform, which the White House and many Democrats in Congress have been doing since the start, it’s time to embrace it.

I hope they do it. For one thing, it would be refreshing to see Democrats actually campaigning honestly for once on what they actually believe in! For another, they would get creamed, because their fantasies about how wonderful Obamacare is have nothing to do with the horrible reality being experienced right now by millions of Americans.

We have a choice

A website, ScienceDebate.org, submitted a wide range of questions to Barack Obama and Mitt Romney about their plans for science and technology, and the answers, shown in a side-by-side comparison, are interesting, though in general they demonstrate the ability of politicians to speak for a long time without saying much.

This ability to blather is especially apparent to their answers to the question 12: “What should America’s space exploration and utilization goals be in the 21st century and what steps should the government take to help achieve them?” Neither candidate adds much to what was said in the Republican and Democratic party platforms, making it obvious that neither really cares or knows that much about this subject.

Overall, however, the answers do reveal the basic and fundamental differences between the two candidates, which can be seen in their answers to the very first question about encouraging innovation:
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It’s the ideology, stupid.

It’s the ideology, stupid.

It’s easy to forget, but Republicans swept the 2010 midterms not through a sweeping indictment of Obama’s economic stewardship, but by hammering Congressional Democrats over their support of the president’s health care law, the stimulus and Democrats’ pursuit of a cap-and-trade energy policy. Running on a firmly ideological agenda, House Republicans picked up 63 House seats – a larger pickup for Republicans than in any election since 1946.

What’s remarkable is that all the fundamental indicators from that historic moment have hardly changed – and in some ways, have worsened for the president. The 2010 midterm NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showed 32 percent believing the country was headed in the wrong direction; their latest poll shows that “right track” number exactly the same, with even more believing the country was on the wrong track. Obama’s job approval in the October before the midterm was at 47 percent; it’s only inched upwards to 48 percent in the most recent survey. [emphasis mine]

2010 wasn’t a fluke, it was a trend. And running on the “ideology” of fiscal responsibility, a balanced federal budget, and a smaller federal government does not seem to me to be very ideological. Rather, it is simple common sense, which is why it worked in 2010 and will work again in November.

Romney’s energy policy proposal announced today would redirect science funding towards basic research.

Mitt Romney’s energy policy proposal, announced today, would redirect science funding towards basic research, according to this mostly positive analysis from the generally liberal journal Science.

Personally I’d like to get the federal government out of all this. Let the private market decide where the money should be spent for research. Moreover, we still have that federal debt to pay off. Where will Romney get the money?

Faced with small crowds at their campaign events, the Obama campaign is now claiming that they are intentionally limiting crowd size at rallies to save money on security.

They can’t seriously think anyone will believe this? Faced with small crowds at their campaign events, the Obama campaign is now claiming that they are intentionally limiting crowd size at rallies to save money on security.

More embarrassing is the original New York Times article, which goes out of its way to sell this absurd claim.

A detailed, fact-based look at the successes and failures of the Obama administration.

A detailed, fact-based look at the successes and failures of the Obama administration.

Sadly, they are mostly failures. What is significant to me is that this article is from liberal Newsweek of all places. It is another data point indicating that even the intellectuals on the left are beginning to realize how much of a failure Obama has been.

This Ohio newspaper editorial about the Presidential race and the choices it offers us might be the most forcefully blunt I have ever read.

This Ohio newspaper editorial about the Presidential race and the choices it offers us might be the most forcefully blunt I have ever read.

Read it and then return. Back yet? Okay, two comments:
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An elderly leftwing protester spit in the face of at Romney supporter at a campaign event today.

Leftwing civility: An elderly leftwing protester spits in the face of at Romney supporter at a campaign event today.

When the left made the accusation that a tea party protester had spat at a Democratic Congressman during the healthcare debate, Andrew Breitbart offered a $100,000 reward for anyone who could provide video proving it happened. Three years later that award remains unclaimed, since the only videos of the event show nothing of the sort took place. Today, not only was this disgusting act actually done by a Democratic protester, in mere hours the video is all over the internet.

Tells us something about who are the uncivil ones in this debate.

Obama press chief said today that they have no plans to take John McCain’s advice and replace Joe Biden as vice president.

Obama’s press chief said today that they have no plans to take John McCain’s advice and replace Joe Biden as vice president.

This public suggestion by John McCain might actually have been the best thing he has ever done for the conservative movement. As Biden has piled on the stupid gaffes in the past few weeks it seemed to me that to fire him and replace him with someone more respectable (and more intelligent) this close to the election would be a very smart political move. Having a Republican suggest it, however, has made the Obama administration decide they can’t do it. Truly wonderful.

The very predictable Democratic playbook against Paul Ryan:

The very predictable Democratic playbook against Paul Ryan:

In the national media narrative – perhaps best illustrated by the shorthand of Jay Leno’s monologue, which presumes that the audience has the barest-bone familiarity with national figures – every Republican figure is reduced to one of three things: Old, stupid, or evil.

George H.W. Bush: Old. Dan Quayle: Stupid. Newt Gingrich: Evil. Pat Buchanan: Evil. Bob Dole: Old. George W. Bush: Stupid. Dick Cheney: Old and evil. John McCain: Old. Sarah Palin: Stupid. ,,,

Because Paul Ryan isn’t old, we will see an effort to paint him as either stupid or evil. You and I know that painting Paul Ryan as stupid is like trying to paint Bill Clinton as chaste. But we have also witnessed the rapid definition of an unknown Republican figure four years ago, and we know that right now, every Democratic official, commentator, talking head, and more than a few reporters awaken this morning with a new mission in life: define Paul Ryan. [emphasis in the original]

In other words, substance be damned, the Democrats have got to find an ad hominem attack that will allow them to dismiss everything Ryan says, even if it makes sense.

For this reason alone I think it justified to fire every Democrat from elected office. Until we can get a reasoned debate on the federal government’s out-of-control debt, it will be impossible to fix the problem. And it is very clear that the Democrats are not willing to have that reasoned debate.

House Democrats are not paying their dues to the party’s central committee.

Indicating the trends: House Democrats are not paying their dues to the party’s central committee.

As of June 30, 64 Democrats — around one-third of the entire caucus — hadn’t paid anything to the DCCC, according to a party document provided to POLITICO. Another 109 members had paid only a portion of what they owe in dues, which are calculated based on seniority and committee assignments.

A trend, not a fluke: Indiana Republicans dump Senator Richard Lugar for a tea party favorite.

A trend, not a fluke: Indiana Republicans have dumped incumbent Senator Richard Lugar for a tea party favorite.

In related news, a prison inmate has gotten the highest percentage of votes, 40 percent, of any candidate in any previous state primary against Barack Obama.

Washington politicians had better stop ignoring the fiscal concerns of the tea party. The federal budget has got to be brought under control.

New Rasmussen poll shows Romney beating Obama 45%-39%

A new Rasmussen poll shows Romney beating Obama 45%-39%.

What is more significant about the poll is how poorly Obama stacks up against every other possible candidate. Though he leads all the others, in no case does he get more than 48% of the vote. Even against a non-entity like Gary Johnson Obama only leads 42% to 27%. These numbers suggest that no matter who runs against Obama, the man is toast.

The Gingrich gamble

Another perspective: The Gingrich Gamble.

Yet for the all sloganeering and invective, the truth is that voting for Gingrich or Romney is not so much an ideological as a personal choice, and one that says as much about the psychological make-up of the individual conservative voter as it does about the choices before him. The risk-takers, romantics, and ideologically pure have concluded that Gingrich unleashed is worth the gamble, and that it is better to win big or lose big than to plan on just squeaking by. They welcome the unending contact sport that we could expect from a President Gingrich, who would not just beat Obama, but repudiate Obamism itself. These are the guys who like passing on third down on their own ten-yard line with a seven-point lead; to them, going on fourth-quarter defense is not only not smart, it is a sure way to lose. In contrast, the more calculating know that romance and rhetoric can often disguise reality, and that it is always wiser to down the ball and run the clock out when you’re ahead.

And I must admit, I prefer the gamble. I’ve had enough of “safe” Republican candidates designed to please the moderates who only end up losing because they can’t express what they believe in with any clarity or force.

Explaining Newt

Explaining Newt.

[W]e have a president who wants us to stay there, who is banal, irritating, humorless, reactionary, self-righteous, and narcissistic all at once. He hasn’t said one interesting thing or proposed one creative idea since being in office.

Unfortunately, the Republican candidates aren’t much better. Romney, Perry, Santorum, Bachmann, Huntsman, even Paul, are no more than critics of a system gone moribund. They do not inspire us. Their ideas, even when worth investigating (flat tax, etc.), are no more than rehashes of proposals we have heard for decades.

Only Newt dances. Only Newt, on occasion, is original. Only Newt — and here is the important part — has the capacity to wake us up. What attracts me about the man is the very thing that Romney criticized, the part that wants to explore the moon and stars, maybe even mine them.

Sure Gingrich has an idea a minute, many of which are bad, but at least he has ideas. At least he is thinking. And — guess what — he says what he thinks. Politicians aren’t supposed to do that.

Read the whole thing.

President Obama is trailing against both Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich in 12 swing states that Obama won in 2008, according to a poll released today.

More evidence that the 2010 landslide was a trend, not an event: President Obama is trailing against both Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich in 12 swing states that Obama won in 2008, according to a poll released today.

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