...the conservatives are coming, the conservatives are coming!
Some general thoughts and observations about the Republican primaries so far...
* Conservative Republican primary voters are angry. And for now, they're taking their anger out on anyone who looks "establishment". The result is a long overdue house cleaning. The establishment doesn't really grasp what's going on here at the gut level. People are not just "angry" and looking to take it out on someone. We're upset with having our party run by people who patronize us, then set about undermining our goals, or at least not effectively advocating them.
* The NRSC's endorsed candidates have now lost EIGHT primaries to DeMint/Palin endorsed, Tea Party supported candidates. They caused the problem by picking candidates that didn't represent the views (or ardor) of Republican primary voters in those states.
* The "establishment" has only made things worse (for itself). By openly attacking candidates supported by the Tea Party movement they have enflamed the grassroots with new passion. Lesson: don't shoot a hornet's nest with a garden hose.
* We don't need the Senate. Not right now anyway. If the GOP takes the Senate (along with the House), it becomes easier for Obama to demonize Congress in his 2012 re-election bid. Better not to have complete "control" of Congress when he's running for re-election. Until we have a Republican President, it really doesn't matter as much. There's no appreciable difference between having 49 Republicans in the Senate or 51, other than committee chairmanships. So long as Obama is President and has veto power, a majority in the Senate doesn't really matter. read more »
Why should we as conservatives focus on the grassroots when it comes to politics? Because that's where the opportunities are.
Remember Willie Sutton's response to why he robbed banks? "Because that's where the money is". It's that same in politics. The grassroots is where the votes are.
Ask almost anyone what they think of politics and the usual response is: "It's a dirty business. I don't want anything to do with it."
Yes, politics can be a dirty business, but it's only as dirty as the people that are involved in it.
It gets dirty when far too many good people don't roll up their sleeves and spend the time and effort necessary to clean it up. Whether you're washing your car, changing a diaper, or doing the dishes, you're doing a job that must be done to keep things from getting too far gone. It's maintenance. And it's the same way with politics.
Working a little bit at a time, maintaining a democratic political system is easy, but when we ignore it for long periods of time the dirty work of politics piles up. Then, when we can't stand to look at the mess any longer, it takes a massive effort to clean it up.
Voting, educating yourself and others about the legislative and political process, and getting personally involved in the affairs of your city, state, and nation is maintenance.
The best way to go about that "maintenance" is with good grassroots organization, for three reasons: read more »
Recent national polls showing a larger percentage of Americans expressing support for a non-existing “Tea Party” candidate rather than a Republican candidate is a temptation for conservatives to waste their time and increase the odds of feeling even more disenfranchised in the future.
I understand the frustration, especially the white hot frustration of those who have only recently become energized and involved, most likely as a result of our current President.
The energy, enthusiasm and commitment to core principles is great. It’s beyond great. It’s exactly what this country (and more specifically the GOP) needs. But what we don’t need is for that energy and enthusiasm to be wasted where it will do absolutely no good whatsoever to the principles it represents. read more »
It’s been said that when life gives you lemons you make lemonade. So it is with politics.
The GOP’s 2008 election defeat planted and watered the seeds of what the party has been in need of for a long time – a real conservative revolution.
The good news is that Barack Obama is making it all possible. He and the Democrat leadership are providing Americans with a vivid reminder of everything they don’t like about liberalism.
As White House Chief of Staff Rham Emanuel was credited with saying after Obama took office, ”a crisis is a terrible thing to waste”. Well, just ten months in to his term, Americans are sensing a crisis. Specifically, the crisis represented by Obama’s brand of liberalism, and they’re in the mood for a revolt. read more »
The more things change, the more they stay the same.
When political times get tough for liberal Democrats in Washington, conservative conspiracies are the bogeymen of choice.
Back in 1998 when things got tough for Bill Clinton, Hillary declared that there was a “vast right-wing conspiracy” looking to bring her husband down. Other Democrats where quick to pick up the mantra and do anything they could to discredit those who criticized Clinton.
Now here we are eleven years later and, (although there are no chubby interns involved), we have another liberal President facing hard times. So out pop the conspiracy theories like some worn out jack-in-the-box.
Except now we have two former Democrat Presidents cranking the handle.
In response to a question by NBC’s David Gregory on whether or not “the vast right-wing conspiracy” still exists, Bill Clinton responded, “Oh, you bet. Sure it is. It’s not as strong as it was, because America’s changed demographically, but it’s as virulent as it was.” read more »
...now, for something completely different
The folks over at Human Events took it on themselves to host a "Solutions Day" for conservative policy ideas - which offers something completely different from what we've been hearing out of DC lately - and today's the day.
From their lead article...
But there are better ideas than Obamacare, budget-busting government growth and the economy-killing “cap and trade” global warming tax. Unsurprisingly, they are ideas that conservatives have been proposing all year and on which the national media has imposed an electronic blockade. The hackneyed calumny “Republicans have no alternative” has been applied to everything from the faux-stimulus to Obama’s bloated budget to health care. Enough.
Today, HUMAN EVENTS is devoting itself to reporting and commenting on those ideas. We’ve rounded up many of the conservative leaders in congress to explain -- at one time and in one place -- the keys to economic recovery, health care and energy independence. And here -- in brief -- are the top five of those ideas. Fortunately for the nation, there are many more.
Here's a roundup of some of the interesting articles they're featuring...
Health Care: The Conservative Alternative in the House: (Rep. Tom Price)
Our solution is built upon the principle that when individuals are given control and ownership, we will achieve full access to coverage and see the entire system move in a positive, patient-centered direction. ...
...liberals demand a re-count
Just in case you're tempted to get distracted by all that talk from the White House, Nancy Pelosi, etc. about how all those people showing up at townhall meetings really don't represent America, well it seems the numbers tell a different story:
Self-identified conservatives outnumber self-identified liberals in all 50 states of the union, according to the Gallup Poll.
At the same time, more Americans nationwide are saying this year that they are conservative than have made that claim in any of the last four years.
In 2009, 40% percent of respondents in Gallup surveys that have interviewed more than 160,000 Americans have said that they are either "conservative" (31%) or "very conservative" (9%). That is the highest percentage in any year since 2004.
Only 21% have told Gallup they are liberal, including 16% who say they are "liberal" and 5% who say they are "very liberal."
Thirty-five percent of Americans say they are moderate.
And, of course, we know that most "moderates" tend to be conservatives who are worried about running afoul of political correctness if they admit it.
The bigger news here? Every state? Even California, New York, Massachusetts, etc? Then again, those states have spent the last few years plagued by out of control spending and/or out of control judges trying to impose gay marriage by fiat. Which says something about how popular liberalism is. read more »
Update:Feds trying to salvage program — Update: House Passes 2 Billion “C for C” Bill
This is a bit a humorous story.
Via Wall Street Journal:
White House officials and lawmakers were studying late Thursday how to keep alive the government’s cash-for-clunkers incentive program because of concerns the program’s $1 billion budget may have been exhausted after just one week.
Obama administration officials warned congressional leaders Thursday it planned to suspend the program at midnight. But the White House released a statement late Thursday saying that completed deals would be honored and the program is still under review.
A White House official said, “We are working tonight to assess the situation facing what is obviously an incredibly popular program. Auto dealers and consumers should have confidence that all valid [cash-for-clunker] transactions that have taken place to-date will be honored.”
Lawmakers are discussing with White House officials where to find funding — including possibly tapping the government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, a congressional aide said.
The clunkers program, which offers rebates of up to $4,500 to consumers who trade in old vehicles and buy new, more fuel-efficient models, began July 24 and sparked a surge in car sales.