Tag Archives: Republicans

Republicans and Democrats fight to restrict freedoms

Ugh: House Republicans move to introduce new gun control law, House Democrats vow to fight it because it will allow for due process.

From the second link:

A Democratic source said the more controversial gun-purchase provision may be similar to a bill sponsored by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) that’s backed by the National Rifle Association. Democrats say the Cornyn bill doesn’t go far enough since it includes a “probable cause” standard that would require law enforcement officials to prove that a gun buyer is an actual terrorist rather than a suspected terrorist. Instead, Democrats want a vote on legislation that would bar firearm sales to anyone on a terrorism watch list or no-fly list.

Without a vote on their own legislation, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) and other Democrats have threatened to take control of the House floor once again after they return from the Fourth of July recess. On Wednesday, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and dozens of other Democrats held events around the country demanding action to stop gun violence.

It is disgusting how Democrats no longer support the idea of due process, that they are cool with the idea of secret lists that can deny any American his or her constitutional rights. Boy will they squeal when those lists are used to deny them their rights!

However, it is just as disgusting that the Republicans are playing into the Democrats hands here by introducing any gun control legislation. This is not how you fight Islamic terrorism, by denying Americans access to guns. You fight Islamic terrorism by standing up for our rights while aggressively going after the terrorists who commit those acts of violence.

45 Republicans vote against Paul Ryan nomination

The Republicans have nominated Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) for Speaker of the House with only 200 of 245 votes.

Those 45 members are enough to block him from getting the Speakership during the partisan floor vote on Thursday — if the 45 GOP legislators maintain their opposition, and if Ryan is not aided by a last-minute bloc of Democratic votes.

During the closed-door conference, Ryan won just 200 votes for the nomination. Former Florida House Speaker Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL) earned a whopping 43 votes. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) — who isn’t officially running for Speaker — received one vote. House Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who dropped out of the Speakership race a couple weeks ago, got one vote as well.

The failure on Ryan’s part to win 218 votes—the threshold for anyone to win the Speakership on the House floor assuming every member of the House is present and voting for a person—is a major embarrassment on his part.

If those who opposed Ryan in this Republican vote maintain that opposition when the whole House votes, the only way Ryan can become Speaker is if he gets Democratic votes. If that happens than either he won’t become Speaker or the Republican Party faces a breakup.

Based on recent events with the budget deal, it might make sense for some of these fake conservatives in the Republican Party to admit their real loyalty and join the Democrats. The conservatives would then probably lose control of Congress, but at least we would know where people honestly stood.

Republican leaders find support for Boehner’s speakership very weak in House

Whoa! The Republican leadership tried prior to the August recess to squelch an effort to oust Speaker John Boehner and discovered they did not have the votes.

House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) had been planning to call up on the House floor last week a measure from Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) that would have removed him as Speaker of the House if it succeeded—intending to embarrass Meadows—but abandoned the plan after his entire leadership structure learned that they did not have the votes to re-elect him as Speaker before the August recess.

Though a lot of the information in the article is about complicated House rules issues, what some call “inside baseball” and quite boring, it is very much worth reading because it indicates strongly that John Boehner’s position as Speaker is very exposed. He could very well be ousted when Congress reconvenes in September.

There are 25 members who voted for a Republican alternative at the beginning of this Congress, and now there are plenty more who are disaffected with the tactics of Boehner and his allies in leadership. More members, those who want to replace Boehner suspect, will, over the course of the month of August, come out publicly against Boehner at town hall events and in interviews with media. Unless Democrats bail Boehner out in September or October, if and when such a vote for the speakership would occur, by that point there would be enough members opposed to Boehner’s re-election for him to lose his position.

Even if Boehner survives, the dynamics here suggest that the conservatives have the stronger hand, and are going to try to force him to cater to their desires — something he has not been interested in doing — or face removal.

“It’s declassified and made public once it’s agreed to.”

Does the quote above, said by Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) during debate over the secret Obamatrade bills, remind you of anything? Weren’t we forced to try this dubious legislative approach by Nancy Pelosi (D-California) and the Democrats with Obamacare?

Finding out what was in it after Obamacare was made law has very clearly turned out to be a disaster. The last thing the Republicans should be doing now is to repeat this corrupt practice themselves.

Update: Support for this foolishness in the House appears tepid at best:

According to The Hill, only 116 Republicans and 19 Democrats in the House are committed or leaning to supporting the bill, while 130 Democrats and 29 Republicans are committed or leaning to opposition. That leaves 139 up in the air, most of them Republicans. To get to 218, Boehner and Pelosi will have to find at least 82 more votes out of the 139, a tall order indeed.

Most Republicans fold to Boehner

It appears there will not be a battle in the Republican Party to replace John Boehner.

Instead, the Republicans in the House appear eager to accept their place as brown-nosing boot-lickers to Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama. Moreover, the leadership that likes licking these boots is getting aggressive about it:

Heightening the party’s intramural angst were new political ads by the American Action Network, run by Boehner’s allies. They began running Tuesday in the districts of about 50 House Republicans who defied him on Homeland Security last week. The $400,000 campaign includes phone calls, a few TV ads, and ads on popular conservative talk radio shows. They urged constituents to call their representatives, not vote them out of office.

For years I’ve argued against splitting off a third party, because I know it will only fracture the right’s strengths and give more power to the left. At this point, however, I see no point supporting this Republican Party. It appears they have no interest in fighting for conservative values, and merely wish to act as a go-between between the left and the right, with their sole goal being to placate the right as they facilitate left wing policies.

If we are to be led by leftists, let’s let them lead, do their worst, and show the world exactly who they are. At least then there will be no doubt to future generations who destroyed this country.

The sideshow of Netanyahu’s speech to Congress

The report notes the increasing flood of Democrats who say they will boycott Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress next month. It also makes this cogent point:

In a sane world, as soon as Netanyahu expressed an interest in speaking, Boehner and McConnell could have responded to both the Prime Minister and our President and said it was a fine idea, set up a time and moved forward. If Obama didn’t want this to be a mess and conceivably even find a way to turn it into an advantage, he could have extended an offer to meet privately with Bibi before the speech or even show up at it with him. That would have presented a unified front between two allies for the rest of the world and the whole thing could have been a done deal by now. There’s nothing remarkable about a world leader making a speech in Washington. It’s pretty much what the place exists for.

While the House Republicans have worked this event for their own political advantages, their invitation to Netanyahu did no harm to American interests or our ally. Obama and the Democrats however have done everything they can to push back politically, even though their push back apparently threatens our ally while damaging our interests in the Middle East.

To put it another way, ask yourself whose actions are doing real harm to the diplomatic relations between the United States and Israel? Who is rejecting an ally and refusing to talk or listen to him?

Update: Check out this very pointed column noting the different reactions of the President and the Democrats to two identical invitations from Congress: “A Jew and a Catholic were invited to Congress…”

Senate Republicans call for gas tax hike

Lying slime: A number of Senate Republicans have joined with Democrats to call for an increase in the gas tax.

Though the last time the gas tax was increased was during Bill Clinton’s presidency, the only reason the highway fund is short of money is that they don’t spend it wisely, wasting a lot on stupid projects. (Sounds a lot like almost everything the federal government does, doesn’t it?) Rather than increase the tax, Congress should take a close look at how the money is being spent, and clamp down.

I should note that House Republicans have already said that they will oppose this increase. Whether they stay that course however remains to be seen.

Focusing on strategy instead of substance

This article, about the back room maneuvers by both political parties leading up to last week’s election, has been making the rounds on all the political websites. Called a “must-read, vivid piece”, it reveals all the strategies, mistakes, and childish in-fighting that took place during the campaign, the kind of stuff that makes many people consider politicians such a lower form of life.

I am normally not interested in these smoke-filled backroom stories as I care a lot more about what politicians do when they are in office. This is why I didn’t read the article until today, two days after it was published and after I had seen it quoted in maybe a dozen other political articles about the election.

Having read it I have to agree it is worthwhile reading, but my main take-away is that its focus on the campaign strategies and maneuvers by politicians of both parties epitomizes all that is wrong with modern political journalism as well as the interests too many of its readers. Only once did the article hint at the actual issues crucial to the election, when it summed up the Republican strategy near the beginning of the article:

From the outset of the campaign, Republicans had a simple plan: Don’t make mistakes, and make it all about Obama, Obama, Obama. Every new White House crisis would bring a new Republican ad. And every Democratic incumbent would be attacked relentlessly for voting with the president 97 or 98 or 99 percent of the time.

That’s it. That’s the only hint at real substance in this whole very long and detailed article.

For you see, the election was about Obama and his fumbling incompetence. It was about the policies he and his Democratic supporters in Congress had foisted on the nation. And it was about how those policies have been a disaster for ordinary people all across the nation.

All the games that these politicians play against each other during campaigns really isn’t that important. It might tell you something about their character, but what really matters is what these guys do, when they are in office. Keep that in mind when the next election rolls around, because I guarantee that the politicians and the journalists who write about them are not going to be interested in talking about that. It would be far too embarrassing.

A simple but powerful strategy for Congress against Obama

I’ve read a lot of analysis offering many ideas on what the Republican Congress should do to combat Obama in the next two years, but the best proposal I’ve read yet was posted as a comment to this website earlier today by mpthompson:

The best thing the Republicans can do would be to craft small, simple pieces of legislation that have the broad support of the American people (hmmmm,hmmmm border enforcement) and dare the Obama to veto. Do this week after week until it’s drilled into the electorates heads as to who is really the obstructionist.

Regarding Obamacare. Craft a one page amendment to the law that removes the mandate so that people can choose for themselves whether they want to participate (a pro-choice amendment so to speak). Then another amendment that removes the restrictions on they type of coverage a company can offer (another pro-choice amendment). Then let the public see the Dems for the big-government fascist they are.

There are a host of proposals that could fit this strategy. In addition to the ones suggested above, what about the approving the Keystone pipeline, cancelling the Obamacare medical tax, limiting the abuses of the IRS, limiting Obama’s travel expenses, and punishing the National Park Service for its partisan administration of the law during the Occupy movement and the government shutdown.

I am sure that my readers could think of many many more.

Update: It appears that the new Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), might be planning to follow this strategy, at least when it comes to Obamacare.

Taking a broad look at Tuesday’s Republican sweep

I don’t have much to add to the numerous reports about yesterday’s election by political pundits far more qualified than I. The Republicans won a big landslide victory yesterday, not only gaining control of the Senate, but winning more seats than expected. They also won more seats in the House than expected, widening their majority there to numbers not seen since the 1920s. In addition, they made it a grand slam by winning a plethora of governorships — many in Democratic stronghold states such as Massachusetts, Illinois, and Maryland — as well as taking control of more state legislatures than ever before.

What matters to me, however, is not the election but what this new Republican majority does with its majority. In the past, 1994 and 2000, they more or less squandered the opportunity to rein in government. In 1994, they allowed the government to grow but at a rate below the rate of inflation so that in a few years this resulted in a balanced budget and surpluses. But the government still grew in power and size. In 2000 they did not even do this, allowing government spending and yearly deficits to balloon, even though they had a Republican president who would have supported them if they had wanted to cut the size of government.

Thus, while I am hopeful, I also remain very skeptical about what will happen in the next few years. In order to prove to me and the conservative base that elected them that these Republicans mean what they say when they say they want to shrink the size of government, they are going to have to prove it with real action. They are going to have show us that they really do want to repeal Obamacare. They are going to have to show us that they really do want to gain some control over the border. And they are going to have to show us that they really do want to cut the budget and get it balanced.

I understand that the Democrats in the Senate and Obama can still block many of these initiatives, but too often Republicans have used this fact as an excuse to not try at all. This must stop! They must apply strong pressure on these left wing ideologues, make them reveal their politics for all to see by forcing them to veto or block these initiatives. Only by demonstrating a resolve to rein in government will anyone believe the Republicans when they claim that’s what they want to do. And by doing so they will also simultaneously expose the Democrats as the left wing ideologues that they are.

Making these points can only be for the good, politically.

Two more points, often unstated but fundamental to what elections in the United States represent.
» Read more

Whose side are you on?

Whose side are you on?

The three most important words in politics are: “Compared with what?” And I am more than a little sympathetic to conservatives’ complaints about the failures of elected Republicans in Washington, who consistently disappoint us even when they are in the majority. I am also sympathetic to the view that our situation may have deteriorated to the point that even a unified Republican government under the leadership of principled conservatives may not be enough to turn things around. And though I reject the notion that Mitt Romney wasn’t good enough for true-believing conservatives, let’s say, arguendo, that that was the case. Unless you are ready to give up entirely on the notion of advancing conservative principles through the ballot box, you might consider looking at things this way: Even if you do not think that it matters much whether Republicans win, it matters a great deal that Democrats lose.

Maybe you were not that excited that 2012 gave you a choice between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. I sympathize — I liked Rick Perry. But how is President Romney vs. President Obama a hard choice? How is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell vs. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid a hard choice? How is Speaker of the House John Boehner vs. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi a hard choice?

It isn’t.

Read it all. He smashes to pieces the reasoning many passionate conservatives use to justify not voting at all when they are presented with a choice between a hard leftwing Democratic and what he calls a “squishy RINO.” By abstaining they help put radical leftwing Democrats in power, a circumstance far worse for the country.

This is not to say that we shouldn’t put hard pressure on the squishies to make them less so, only that when push comes to shove, they are still a better option than a politician who is liberal and not squishy.

This is how the tea party ends.

This is how the tea party ends.

The Tea Party’s success is not gauged by primaries alone. It’s gauged by how much the Tea Party’s priorities become the Republican Party’s priorities.

The Tea Party’s impact in primaries is largely about putting fear into establishment candidates, whether they knock them off or not. It took them two cycles, but the traditional Republican establishment took the right lessons from the Bennett and Lugar losses. Orrin Hatch spent 2011-12 voting lockstep with Mike Lee. Primary threats made Mike Enzi part of the organizing group for the defund push. Pat Roberts is doing his best to don the winger apparel. Lindsey Graham is trying like mad to re-establish his conservative credentials. Thad Cochran is the exception that proves the rule: it’s no accident that a traditional Washington appropriator who hasn’t modified his ways is the most vulnerable GOP Senator this cycle. So if establishment Republicans understand that they are vulnerable in primaries, and have to pretend to be Tea Partiers when they’re in cycle, is that a sign that the Tea Party is dead – or a sign that it’s had a significant political impact?

The tea party movement has won because it is now driving the political debate, in both parties. Republicans want to look like tea partiers, and even Democrats are shaping their election campaigns with tea party issues in mind.

The evil polices of that evil Republican Scott Walker has now produced a $1 billion budget surplus in Wisconsin.

The evil polices of that evil Republican Scott Walker has now produced a $1 billion budget surplus in Wisconsin.

Senate Republicans Tuesday narrowly passed Gov. Scott Walker’s $541 million tax cut proposal in a vote that guaranteed the cuts will become law.

The tax decreases — the third round of cuts by Republicans in less than a year — passed 17-15 with GOP Sen. Dale Schultz of Richland Center joining all Democrats in voting against the proposal. The proposal now goes to the Assembly, which passed a different version of the tax cuts last month with two Democrats joining all Republicans in supporting it.

With growing tax collections now expected to give the state a $1billion budget surplus in June 2015, Walker’s bill will cut property and income taxes for families and businesses, and zero out all income taxes for manufacturers in the state. [emphasis mine]

Why is it that even with gigantic and yearly surpluses Democrats still oppose tax cuts? Or do we already know the answer?

“Indeed we are not purists. We just want people who fundamentally represent our values.”

The real tea party platform: “We are not purists. We just want people who fundamentally represent our values.”

Indeed, despite the allegations that we seek purity within the party, it is clear that what we want is a bold party of contrast – whether in the majority or minority. We want a party that will offer a bold stance on immigration and the debt ceiling, for example, and fight for it with equal and opposing force. We want loyal conservatives that share and fight for our conservative values the same way elected liberals fight for the Democrat party platform. Instead we are given a pale pastel version of Republicans who placate conservatives during election years, and then enact the liberal Democrat talking points through clandestine political efforts.

We know who is with us and who is with the political class. Everybody takes bad votes once and a while. Even Ted Cruz recently voted for a bad flood insurance bill. None of us are demanding purity from him because we know that on almost every issue he is not just a vote but a courageous and effective voice for the millions of us who are disenfranchised by the ruling class oligarchy. He fights every day in Washington for us.

The article also looks in detail at the recent debt ceiling vote and notes how it clearly revealed the loyalties of the Republican leadership. As the author states, “The leaders in the House and Senate, along with their boot lickers, are fundamentally against us. Many of us have known and observed this privately for years, but the debt ceiling vote – both in the House and Senate – brought their devious subterfuge out in the open.”

Read it all. Its goal is not to make you give up, but to recognize the difference between the Republicans who matter and the Republicans who are quislings.

More details here about the growing leadership fight in the Republican Party. Based on what I read, the present leadership, especially in the House, is on very thin ice.

Boehner suggests linking the debt-limit hike to a restoration of recent cuts to military benefits.

The unseriousness of the Republican leadership: Boehner suggests linking the debt-limit hike to a restoration of recent cuts to military benefits.

First of all, only a few weeks ago the Republican leadership was telling us these cuts were essential, which is why they went along with them in the last deal. Second and more important, we have far more significant issues — Obamacare and the federal debt — for which any serious conservative in office should be far more interested in pursuing than the relatively small cuts to military benefits.

If the Boehner and the Republican leadership were really serious about rolling back Obamacare as well as winning elections, they would link every negotiation with that issue. We all know they would eventually have to back down, but the goal would be force the Democrats to vote for Obamacare, again and again, even as that terrible law is devastating families nationwide. Not only would it put them in a bad light, it would emphasize the differences between the two parties.

Republican leadership begins an effort to back off from repealing Obamacare.

Cowards in action! The Republican leadership begins an effort to back off from repealing Obamacare.

While the Democrats always push for their ideology, no matter how unreasonable (see previous post), too many Republicans are always cowards, chickening out and giving in, even when faced with unreasonable Democratic demands.

Why Republicans should reject the surrender budget deal rumors say Paul Ryan is negotiating with Democrats.

Why Republicans should reject the surrender budget deal rumors say Paul Ryan is negotiating with Democrats.

Expect more articles like this. There are a lot of conservatives in the Republican House caucus who are no longer willing to lick the feet of Democrats, even if the Republican leadership is. And any deal that gives up sequestration is going to face their wrath.

Also, these kinds of articles serve to pressure Ryan so that he does not agree to a surrender.

A Republican bill to allow insurance companies to continue to offer their old policies is gaining Democratic support.

A Republican bill to allow insurance companies to continue to offer their old policies is gaining Democratic support.

This bill once again proves that the Republicans are the stupid party. This bill is a travesty. It will not solve any problems, but will transfer the disaster to the federal budget. Under Obamacare the insurance companies can’t afford those old health plans since Obamacare now requires them to give insurance to everyone, even the sick who do not have insurance. Thus, they need to charge more to pay for those sick customers. If the old plans are forced on them, they will need significant subsidies from somewhere to stay in business, and this bill gives it to them out of the U.S. treasury. Moreover, the bill only adds more complexity and confusion to the whole mess.

If the Republicans had any brains, they would simply demand repeal at this moment. Repeal is the only real solution, so that we can start over and deal intelligently with the problems of the health insurance industry. It is also the smart political move. If the Democrats refuse to cooperate, they once again will be forced to endorse Obamacare as it collapses. If they go along, the Republicans get what the country needs, while winning politically.

And there’s this: It’s a trap!

Why the shutdown was a total victory for conservatives, both in the short and long runs.

Why the shutdown was a total victory for conservatives, both in the short and long runs.

The shutdown/debt limit imbroglio wasn’t a defeat. Defeats leave the losers feeling defeated. But the designated losers, the conservative base of the GOP – which, more accurately, now is the GOP – is more eager and excited than it has been in a long time.

Why? Someone fought. Finally.

Sure, we didn’t win the repeal of Obamacare. The only people talking about actually repealing Obamacare as a direct result of the tactical moves of recent weeks were the doddering dinosaurs and their media accomplices trying to put out the notion that Ted Cruz and his band of merry marauders had suckered us numbskull conservatives with promises of total victory right here and right now.

Being very familiar with the Constitution, we realize that it’s kind of difficult to pass a law when we only hold the House. We’re clear on that. We were always clear on that. What Ted Cruz did – and what the go-along, get-along gang of Republican stegosauruses hate – is that he fought. He fought. There’s a huge value to drawing a line, to taking a stand, to rallying the troops.

Real leaders – which the GOP establishment lacks – know that. We’ve had two presidential elections in a row with a demoralized base. That’s bad. Just ask Presidents McCain and Romney. [emphasis in original]

The key for determining which side is winning this battle is to look at the positions that new politicians are taking. That tells you the trend. And what I see is that the challengers all want to be Ted Cruz, not John McCain.

House Republicans plan to pass more narrow funding bills in an effort to get some of the government running again.

House Republicans plan to pass more narrow funding bills in an effort to get some of the government running again.

In recent days, House Republicans have advanced several bills targeting high-profile areas of the government impacted by the shutdown, such as national parks, veterans’ benefits and the National Institutes of Health. In turn, they have pressed Senate Democrats to take up the measures and ensure that at least some portions of the government can be funded while the two sides search for a broader compromise. Thus far, Senate Democrats and the White House have rejected that approach, pushing back on Republicans to accept a plan to fund the entire government at sequester levels.

Bills to fund the government have been passed by the House, controlled by Republicans. The Senate, controlled by Democrats, refuses to even look at them, even though those bills contain nothing in them that the Democrats specifically disagree with. Whose causing this shutdown then?

Even as the Republicans in the House continue to pass budget bills for funding the government — with some Democratic support — Obama and the Democratic leadership continue to refuse to negotiate.

Even as the Republicans in the House continue to pass budget bills for funding the government — with some Democratic support — Obama and the Democratic leadership continue to refuse to negotiate.

I find it revealing that the author of the article above claims that “Republican unity is beginning to fray” when it is the Democrats who are beginning to vote with the Republicans. For example, in the very next paragraph after making this claim the article states that

The bill to fund the national parks passed on a 252-173 vote, while the measure to fund NIH cleared on a 254-171 vote. In both cases, about two dozen Democrats joined with the GOP. [emphasis mine]

On all these votes it is the Republicans in the House who have been united, while the Democrats unity is failing. It seems to me that if the Republicans keep submitting these bills, the Democrats will eventually fold. For example, today Harry Reid was asked why he has even blocked a funding bill that would fund children’s cancer research and answered most awkwardly, “Why would I do that?”

Politically, the Democrats cannot survive more of these kinds of embarrassments.

The House Republicans plan to offer separate funding bills to the Democrats in an effort to get parts of the government back in operation.

The House Republicans plan to offer separate funding bills to the Democrats in an effort to get parts of the government back in operation.

This is about the fifth proposal the Republicans have offered to fund the government, all of which have been rejected by the Democrats without even the courtesy of polite conversation. And it appears that the Democrats are already saying they will reject these bills as well.

In straight party line votes, the Democrats in Congress once again voted for Obamacare, refusing to even consider a one year delay in some of its provisions in order to keep the government running.

In straight party line votes, the Democrats in Congress today once again voted for Obamacare, refusing to even consider a one year delay in some of its provisions in order to keep the government running.

The Senate voted for the second time Monday to kill a Republican counter-offer that would rein in ObamaCare while funding the government, kicking the bill back to the House with only a couple hours left on the clock before the government begins to shut down. Lawmakers are facing a midnight deadline to reach an agreement on a government spending bill. Senate Democrats vow they will not accept any proposal that targets ObamaCare. The latest House bill would have delayed the law’s individual mandate while prohibiting lawmakers, their staff and top administration officials from getting government subsidies for their health care.

The Senate voted 54-46 along party lines to reject it. [emphasis mine]

My description of this story above is not how most news outlets are covering the story, since it spins the story in favor of the Republicans. However, the fact remains that the Democrats continue to demand that Obamacare be enforced, come hell or high water. No compromise, no negotiation, no discussion will be allowed, even if that means the entire federal government will go down in flames.

Personally, I am not worried about a government shutdown. It will be generally as harmless as sequestration was, especially since both parties came to an agreement to fund the military, which will not shutdown. Stories like this, about how NASA will be shutdown almost entirely, are mostly repeating overstatements and lies by the administration. Some projects will get delayed, others stalled, but nothing important will likely be lost.

And yes, we still intend to hike tomorrow in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, even if the Park Service tells us it is closed.

Why the House should stand firm.

Why the House should stand firm.

When President Barack Obama is willing to negotiate with Russian, Syrian and Iranian leaders but unwilling to negotiate with the U.S. House of Representatives, it is time for the House to stand firm. When Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says, according to unnamed sources quoted in Politico, that he will refuse to attend a negotiation at the White House because House Republicans have to cave and surrender to his terms, it is time to stand firm. When a senior, unnamed Democratic official is quoted Monday morning calling for no negotiations and saying “it’s time to punch the bully in the nose,” it is time to stand firm. When Obama spends a week making three partisan speeches attacking Republicans and then calls House Speaker John Boehner to tell him, “I will not negotiate,” it is time to stand firm.

It is a sad commentary on Obama’s attitude toward the elected majority of the House of Representatives that he could have a more pleasant conversation with the head of the Iranian dictatorship than with the elected leader of the U.S. House.

Just once in my life I would like to see the conservatives stand firm and not back down. What the Republicans are demanding is not unreasonable, and considering the numerous problems being caused by Obamacare, quite relevant and appropriate. If the Democrats discover they can get their way in even these circumstances, then their behavior in the coming years will become far more intolerant and uncompromising.

Republicans vent frustration over their internal battles over stopping Obamacare.

Republicans vent frustration over their internal battles over stopping Obamacare.

I link this article, describing the conflicts within the Republican Party over tactics, to note that while these idiots and the press (both liberal and conservative) are focusing on these minor differences, the main point is being completely missed: The Democrats just voted again to endorse Obamacare and make sure that horrible law stays in force.

We know that almost every Republican wants to stop and repeal this law. All they are arguing over is tactics. What counts here is that the Democrats still support Obamacare, and have just demonstrated this to every voter. If the Republican leadership had any brains (something I sincerely now doubt), they would be focusing on this fact in every conversation with the press, continually. Similarly, the conservative press is acting stupid as well, focusing on these minor tactical battles rather than the fact that the Democrats continue to support this disaster of a law, despite the harm it is doing to Americans.

Todd Akin, the Republican running for the senate in Missouri, tried to explain his opposition to all abortion, even in instances of rape, by saying that “legitimate rape” rarely leads to pregnancy.

The stupid party: Todd Akin, the Missouri Republican running for the Senate, tried to explain his opposition to all abortion, even in instances of rape, by saying that “legitimate rape” rarely leads to pregnancy.

Note that this is more evidence that Republicans should listen to Sarah Palin, who endorsed and campaigned for one of Akin’s opponents in the primary. It is also evidence that for voters to favor a tea party candidate is not necessarily a big risk.

At least 80 House Republicans have signed a letter demanding that Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) block any further funding of Obamacare.

At least 80 House Republicans have signed a letter demanding that Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) block any further funding of Obamacare.

This story illustrates two things. First, the House Republican leadership has been timid about using its power to block the implementation of Obamacare, even though the public clearly wants it blocked. Second, that about a third of the House Republican membership has already signed the letter, with more signatures expected, suggests that the bulk of the Republican Party is not as timid as their leadership. Moreover, I expect the November election to significantly strengthen this fiscally conservative trend.

Thus, it will not surprise me if we see some very radical budget cuts in the next Congress.

The empty bench of the Democratic Party.

The empty bench of the Democratic Party.

In comparing the potential Presidential candidates from both the Democrat and Republican parties, this article leaves one with the impression that the future is definitely not with the Democratic Party. As admitted by its own membership, its leadership is old, it has very few candidates with national stature, and the depth of the party is shallower than a pond in Tucson in summer. Meanwhile, the Republicans have many young new faces that already have national standing.

Though the article likes to blame this situation on internal forces within the parties, I see it as the result of actual elections and the circumstances of the time. The Democrats have increasingly appeared bankrupt when it comes to dealing with today’s fundamental problems, especially the out-of-control spending of government at all levels. Meanwhile, Republican candidates, especially those associated with the tea party movement, have come forward with some fresh, reasonable, and thoughtful ideas for dealing with these problems.

Faced with such a choice, it is not surprising that the Republicans have a deep bench compared to the Democrats.

A black former Democrat Congressman who also gave the seconding speech for Obama’s nomination in 2008 has decided to switch parties and become a Republican.

What does this tell us? A black former Democrat Congressman who also gave the seconding speech for Obama’s nomination in 2008 has decided to switch parties and become a Republican.

1 2