Adam’s Blog

That’s my thing, keepin’ the faith, baby. –Joe Friday

The Woman Who Could Topple Otter?

Posted by Adam Graham on June 1, 2009

Many conservatives feel Governor Butch Otter should be challenged in 2010’s Primary. I’ve heard very little belief in Rex Rammell as the candidate to do that  and that was before he filed Chapter 11.  The question is who could challenge Governor Otter and hope to prevail.

I’ve given this some thought and have an answer. I have no clue if she’d run or even I’d endorse her, but Ada County Commissioner Sharon Ullman occurs to me as a very likely candidate.

Conservatives complaints with Otter have centered around a couple of key issues: taxes and government arrogance with the Chris Pentico arrest epitomizing that. Ullman’s strength as an open government advocate and a budget hawk could answer those questions quite nicely.

The biggest knock on Ullman is the allegation that she doesn’t work well with others. Butch Otter doesn’t have much room to talk after the last session.

Ullman also has name recognition, money, and activist power that would form behind her well in Ada and Canyon County,  and her general sympathies would end up helping her in Rural Idaho.

Could she make a campaign in the first two years of her term on the Ada County Commission? Absolutely. Conrad Burns ran for the U.S. Senate in the middle of his first term as Yellowstone County Commission in Montana. So, it would not be unheard of.

One possible issue with Ullman is that her views on moral issues are unknown as they’ve not been relevant to any job she sought. If those aren’t traditionalists, many people who vote on the cultural  issues would choose Otter over her.

If Ullman’s views are in line with the conservative base then she would be a huge threat to Governor Otter, bringing anti-establishment credentials mixed with executive experience: a potent mix that I’m not sure Governor Otter could withstand.

Posted in Idaho Conservative | Leave a Comment »

Cheers and Boos

Posted by Adam Graham on May 31, 2009

Cheers to the Idaho Virtual Academy:  They had their first graduation this Saturday.  And somewhere an IEA board member cried. Hard. Well done IDVA, great work bringing innovation to public schools.

Cheers to the Obama Administration: For its plan to incentivize states adopting charter schools and lifting restrictions. If you’re going to have the federal government in education (which you shouldn’t.) then it should be supporting something responsible. The Obama Administration’s plan is more carrot and less stick. Wonder how our friends on the left feel about this.

Boos to Supporters of a big new tax to fund a library in Canyon County.  I love libraries as much as the next guy, but there’s a recession going on and people are truly taxed enough.

Posted in Idaho Conservative | Leave a Comment »

Obama’s Mad Man Management

Posted by Adam Graham on May 10, 2009

Why 539,000 people losing their jobs may not be good news.

Obama’s phony cuts.

A whale of government waste. (Hat Tip: Don Surber.)

Where Obama cuts budget: funds for slain police officers. (Hat Tip: Red State.)

Obama strongarms Chrysler’s creditors. (Hat Tip: Wizbang Blog.)

Obama strongarms California.(Hat Tip: Hot Air.)

Likely will follow with CEOs.  (Hat Tip: Hot Air.)

Massachusetts presents welfare cars.  (Hat Tip: Hot Air.)

Frivolous complaint against Sarah Palin dismissed.

Obama’s new military commissions a lot like Bush’s old commissions.

Pelosi knew and that’s not all.

Obama seeks to make Israel give up nuclear arsenal. (Hat Tip: Hot Air.)\

Conyers backs off on ACORN probe. (Hat Tip: Michelle Malkin.)

Obama backs away from homosexual groups.

1000 people show up to oppose tax increases in Tucson. (Hat Tip: Don Surber.)

America’s reading gender gap.  (Hat Tip: Education Watch.)

Paying teachers not to teach.

Second Amendment update.

Anti-Catholic gay rights activists appointed to President’s faith council.

Happy Islam Day.

Music by Madly Jadly via the Podsafe Music Network.

Click here to listen, click here to download.

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The Debate on Conservative Civility

Posted by Adam Graham on May 8, 2009

I responded to a piece by a John Hawkins on Pajamas Media on conservative civility

PJM columnist John Hawkins’ advice to conservatives to be as nasty as liberals is like Sean Connery’s “Chicago way” speech in The Untouchables applied to American politics: “They pull a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue. That’s the Chicago way.”

But is the “Chicago way” the right way for conservatives? Certainly, conservatives need to re-evaluate their tactics in light of Democratic behavior. That Democrats will engage in obstruction of Republican judicial nominees, while Republicans will let Democratic nominees sail through is absurd. In my home state of Idaho, a local was critical of Republicans talking about challenging first-term Congressman Walt Minnick (D-ID) and urged them to wait until 2010, even though Minnick was on record as a candidate who criticized former Congressman Bill Sali back in January of 2007, the year Minnick raised more than $400,000.

When conservatives do things like this, they’re acting like British troops trying to form into straight lines while their enemies take positions behind rocks and trees to pick them off like flies. They’re denying reality and have failed to acknowledge that the battle lines have shifted. However, I think Hawkins’ thesis for conservative nastiness is wrong for several reasons:

1) Conservatives are not liberals

I’ll counter Hawkins’ martial arts analogy with a sports analogy of my own. A baseball team with several players that regularly hit home runs can get players on base, not worry about base running, and win with a strategy of “pitching, defense, and the three-run homer.” This same strategy won’t work if a team has decent speed and only one or two players that are reliable long-ball hitters. Baseball strategy is always going to be dependent on the team you have to play with. You can’t expect singles hitters to consistently deliver three-run homers, so you have to work it another way.

Culturally, conservatives are unable to play the same game as liberals, because we do not possess the same mentality. I would argue that conservatives have a greater sense of respect for authority, rules of civility, and fundamental order within society. This is so ingrained that in Boise, when social conservatives felt the need to practice civil disobedience over the removal of a Ten Commandments monument, it was arranged in advance with the police that only a small number of people would be arrested and they would go quietly. There was a strong feeling among Ten Commandments supporters that they didn’t want to give the police officers a hard time, because the police were only doing their job and enforcing the actions of a boneheaded city council.

Hawkins responded with a piece of his own that didn’t leave me a whole to respond to in  an actual PJM response. Hawkins doesn’t prove that his tactics will work, only arguing that conservatives should do them because the liberals are due it.

 Hawkins of North Carolina questions the tactics of the Ten Commandments:

It’s fascinating that Mr. Graham picks that example, not only because it was a failure, but also because of the obvious contrast that has so often been drawn between Christian and Muslim protests. Christians are mocked and laughed at with impunity in this country because most Christians don’t have the backbone to stand up for their faith. Maybe the truth hurts, but I suspect there are few Christians reading this who’d disagree. On the other hand, Muslims are treated with the utmost respect here in the U.S. and across the world. Part of that’s because there is a fear that if you insult Muslims, one of them might kill you. However, even if that weren’t the case, Muslims would be treated with much more respect because they take grave offense when someone insults their religion. If Christians felt the same way, 90% of black Americans would be voting for Republicans instead of Democrats, Barack Obama wouldn’t be invited to speak at Notre Dame, and that Ten Commandments monument would be sitting in that Boise park today.

I’d also add that sometimes, regrettably, the only way to preserve “respect for authority, rules of civility, and fundamental order within society” is to give the people who are ruining those things a taste of their own medicine.

So, let me agree in part with Hawkins, that if Christians had cared in large enough numbers about the issue, there would have been a different outcome politically. We had hundreds involved, but there are tens of thousands of Christians who didn’t care and indeed who in order to make themselves look good attacked those who supported the Ten Commandments.

However, what if the 100 people who had volunteered to be arrested all lied down on the ground and made their bodies go limp, would that have stopped police? It would have delayed them, but the monument would have still gone out.  We needed Christians to care to the point that there were political consequences for the Mayor and Council, not for hundreds to obstruct police.

If this were an effective tactic, abortion would have ended during the Operation Rescue situation. While, it can be argued that Operation Rescue’s tactics were moral as a response to abortion with non-violent civil disobedience, they did not end abortion.

Hawkins also disagrees with my statement on trained protestors:

Really? The 18-year-old college students blocking conservatives from speaking at campuses are trained Alinsky radicals? I’m not so sure that’s correct. Moreover, it doesn’t seem like such a good idea to “never go outside the expertise of your people.”

I’d say many of them are, though probably more like the 21-year old ring-leaders. Generally, you’ll hear certain things at protests that people have been taught to do, like the screaming/chanting person who stands up like a priest during vespers.

Chanter: I say union, you say rocks. Union.

Crowd: Rocks

Chanter: Union!

Crowd: Rocks!

Going along with my point of conservatives looking silly in this regard, imagine this:

Chanter: I say Captain Gains Taxes and you say, “suck.”  Capital Gains Taxes.

Crowd: Suck.

Chanter: Captain Gains Taxes.

Crowd: Suck.

I rest my case on the poser point.

Moreover, the Right is slowly but surely narrowing the media gap. For example, WorldNetDaily — which Mr. Graham disparagingly mentions — gets more traffic than the Associated Press and the top seven conservative talk radio hosts alone reach more than 60 million people a week combined.

My point is that the stories on journalists are more likely to play in a conservative echo chamber and not get out to the general public. Conservatives are narrowing the media gap, but with the exception of Fox News, the only people who are being reached are conservatives. Therefore to expect to get great play in the mainstream of society by exposing Maureen Dowd is silly. Ain’t happening.

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Can We Handle the Truth

Posted by Adam Graham on May 5, 2009

We can’t handle the truth. (Hat Tip: Brody File.)

Obama plays the madman card. (Hat Tip: Wizbang Blog.)

Arlen Specter plays death of Jack Kemp for political advantage. (Hat Tip: Red State.)

Arlen Specter’s misleading website.  (Hat Tip: Right Wing News.)

A Democrat for Coleman. (Hat Tip: Hot Air.) 

Congress ends up funding Washington, DC’s other zoo.  (Hat Tip: Campaign Spot.)

The Government what it’s doing is a waste of time

Obama makes up jobs numbers.  (Hat Tip: Don Surber.)

No bid contact corruption for Congressman’s nephew at the Pentagon. (Hat Tip: Hot Air.) 

Union election fraud in Chicago.  (Hat Tip: Labor Pains.)

Click here to listen, click here to download.

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Governor Otter Hopes We Forget

Posted by Adam Graham on May 5, 2009

The endless legislative session continues into its 113th Day. Members are getting testy and I’d say that its understandable, this isn’t what they signed up for and the session is dragging on due to the incredible stubborness of the Governor and his refusal to accept the BIllion Dollars Idaho’s legislature has appropriated this year for roads as their last say. He desperately wants to raise our taxes. This is like back during the Grocery Tax debate when the governor didn’t want to sign a bill that didn’t have the effect of raising taxes on the middle class in order to finance a tax cut for the poor.

Does the Governor believe he opposed far too many tax increases as a principled young man and now needs to make up for it by taxing the heck out of  his in twilight years? One has to wonder.

What do we say of Governor Otter’s latest plan?

Gov. Butch Otter said he still wants a gas tax increase, but he’s also willing to accept the interim committee to study transportation funding that House GOP leaders have proposed. He said his “counter offer” to House leaders is a delayed, 3-cent per gallon increase on July 1, 2011 and another 3-cent hike on July 1, 2012, which combined with the already-offered ethanol and DMV fees bill, would bring the package up to $75 million in new revenue. “I have seen well-intended and well-meaning people work on interim committees,” Otter said, but often, “there was no result, and there was nothing to go forward. I believe having the 3-and-3 delayed implementation bill this day, then, would motivate that interim committee to attend to its work and to be as creative and come up with the real solution.” If the committee finds a better solution than the delayed gas tax, Otter said he’d consider it, but he wants the tax approved now for planning purposes for transportation work. “We will continue to work, we will continue to try to go forward on the transportation funding, because it is so very important,” Otter said. “We need certainty, and we need the $75 million in revenue.”

Otter offers the legislature a chance to avoid increasing taxes IN the recession by waiting until AFTER the recession. To imagine that the recession will not have reached a technical, if not felt end by 2011 would be incredibly pessimistic, so in essence, if the House Republicans agree to Otter’s proposal, they can go home and say they didn’t raise taxes in the recession. Better yet, voters won’t be hit by the tax increase until 2011, a year after the vote. The gas tax increase tends to be the easiest tax in the world to hide because it’s not even shown on the receipt how much you’re paying in tax. A 3 cent variance can happen in a week easily, so the 3 cent increase gets slipped into the ebb and flow of gas prices. 

And the interim committee? As proposed by the House, it would be an opportunity to find money to fund transportation. Under Otter, it’s something that compromising legislators can go back and tell their constituents will prevent the tax increase, but in reality, Governor Otter, for whatever reason, wants a tax increase, and has shown no interest in alternatives. If Governor Otter was interested in alternatives, his man in the Senate, John McGee (R-10) wouldn’t have bottled up H0226, an innovative transportation funding proposal that could provide tens of millions of dollars for Idaho roads without raising taxes. If Governor Otter has the gas tax increase, he’s going to reject any other funding mechanism that eliminates it.

But what Governor Otter offers the Idaho House is a chance to try and pull the wool over the eyes of Idaho voters and everything will be fine. If this were 2003 with the Sales Tax increase, Otter would be right. However, it’s not 2003. The mood is far different and far less forgiving for recalcitrant politicians.

Don’t be fooled by the size of Tea Party II. All that proved was that most conservatives aren’t professional protest warriors. Boise’s big tea party on April 15 is not the only reason the legislature is in session. If I’m from Sandpoint or St. Marie’s, I really don’t care what’s going on in Boise. These members of the State House are responding to the voices of their people. And as Representatives they’re doing their job, as much as it may frustrate the Governor.

As for State Senators, all I have to say is that many of these fellows ought to sincerly pray that Closed Primaries aren’t the law come 2010 or I see big-time turnover that will make your head swim.

Posted in Idaho Conservative, The | Leave a Comment »

The Press Loves Obama

Posted by Adam Graham on May 3, 2009

Podcast Show Notes

Anti-terrorism expert declines to participate in Obama’s charade

National media paints bright red targets on designers of CIA’s interrogation program. (Hat Tip: Right Wing News.)

Self-sacrificing Michelle Obamas $540 shoes

The Vice-President misrepresented what the Vice-President meant to say.

The Obama’s Administration’s secret dinners with the press.

Obama declines to call on Fox Reporter

Obama declines to call on Fox Reporter because Fox didn’t carry his press conference.

Obama Administration allegedly threatens attorney with personal destruction. (Hat Tip: Hot Air.)

On second thought: Obama considers changing mind on military commissions for Guantanamo detainees. (Hat Tip: Patterico.)

Obama’s taxpayer surprise

Diversity training gone wrong. (Hat Tip: Colussus of Rhodey.)

Second Amendment update.

Environmental activists trying to reframe Global Warming debate with word games.  (Hat Tip: Stop the ACLU.)

Congress wastes time on the BCS. (Hat Tip: Outside the Beltway.)

Music by Daniel James via the Podsafe Music Network

Could China become a Christian Nation?

Click here to listen, click here to download.

Posted in Barack Obama, Podcast | Leave a Comment »

Miss California Stands Strong

Posted by Adam Graham on April 30, 2009

Podcast Show Notes

Obama jabs at the tea parties

Try GotoMyPC free for 30 days! For this special offer, visitwww.gotomypc.com/podcast

Miss California organizers tried to get Miss California to apologize to the gay community. (Hat Tip: Hot Air.)

Click here to download, click here to add this podcast to your Itunes

IMPORTANT: Please take our listener survey 

 

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The Dangerous Good Old Boys of the GOP

Posted by Adam Graham on April 30, 2009

My latest Pajamas Media piece is up.

Since the election, the debate has raged. Who is responsible for the 2008 election debacle and the defeat of the Republican Party?

So far this question has centered on various groups’ attempts to reenact the scapegoat scene from Leviticus and cast all the sins of the Republican Party onto cultural conservatives and release their concerns into the wilderness.

The battle has been as entertaining as it has been misguided and pointless. Is there a war between economic conservatives and social conservatives? As someone actively involved in both social and fiscal issues, I’ve seen a lot of crossover between the two sides in terms of people who show up. This crossover is quite common. A leading economic conservative group, Club for Growth, often backed the same candidates as socially conservative groups like National Right to Life, Government Is Not God-PAC, and Focus on the Family Action. Newt Gingrich has begun to go around with slides showing that the most socially conservative members of Congress were also the most fiscally conservative.

I’m going to suggest an alternate conclusion. I’m going to reject the conventional wisdom that the election was lost because of the party grassroots and go out on a limb and suggest that maybe the problem is not the party’s activists. Perhaps (and I know this is shocking) the people who led the party over the cliff are the ones to blame.

The GOP doesn’t have a religious problem, a gay rights problem, or an abortion problem. It fundamentally has a good old boy problem. Let us tell the story of a primary, and we don’t have to name names, because the story is the same across the country.

Read the rest here.

Posted in Future of Conservatism | Leave a Comment »

Story Blogging Update

Posted by Adam Graham on April 30, 2009

Sorry for the delays, web host has been crazy. Part Three of StrandedTales of the Dim Knight, and Unknown Mission are up.

Posted in Story Blogging | Leave a Comment »

The Specter of Overkill

Posted by Adam Graham on April 30, 2009

We’ve had a lively dialogue on the frontpage over this issue, and I know it’s probably wearing thin. But I feel compelled to respond to Alex’s first post of the day.

Before I do that, let me state this. Specter is our opponent. It is the duty of all good Republicans to do what they can to see Arlen Specter not re-elected and to take this Senate seat back for the Republicans. Those who are right now making a political martyr out of Senator Specter are doing a disservice to the Republican Party. The debate over Specter-Toomey ended yesterday. The job of Republicans now is to defeat Arlen Specter.

Alex asks:

1. Why are you celebrating Specter’s defection while championing Norm Coleman, who was ranked just as moderate as Specter in the National Journal’s 2007 rankings?

3. Which party does Arlen Specter belong in? Is he a DINO now? You praise Ben Nelson as being a reasonable Democrat. Is Arlen Specter a reasonable Democrat?

5. Tom Coburn once told me that he would not have welcomed Joe Lieberman into the party if he had wanted to switch. Do you agree?

The first question makes a poor assumption. It assumes that all that matters is the 2007 National Journal ratings. Specter has an entire career of screwing conservatives. Take a look at American Conservative Union Ratings and you’ll see that Norm Coleman has a career ACU rating of 68.83% v. 44.47% for Specter. In addition, while Coleman may be a moderate, he does share common cause with many conservatives on  the pro-life issues as well as other key conservative points. Coleman may have disappointed conservatives from time to time, but he hasn’t turned annoying conservatives into performance art as Senator Specter has.

With regards to Senator Specter, I would consider a Democrat capable of being reasoned with. The same category I’d place Senator Nelson and Senator Lieberman in. That doesn’t mean that I’d want either of these three gentlemen in the Republican Party. I’d like there to be people on the other side who I can genuinely respect as capable reasonable human beings and not just a party of shrill left-wing Zombies.  So I would agree with Dr. Coburn.

2. Are you aware that the ladies from Maine got more cut from the stimulus bill than any of the efforts of the likes of Jim DeMint?

And it’s still far too big. Once one begins talking about these hundreds of billions dollar bills, it really doesn’t matter. One might as well say, “Thanks to the ladies from Maine, they only shot you ten times rather than twelve times.” Great, but I’m still dead.

4. Do you agree with Jim DeMint when he says that he’d rather have a party of 30 senators who all think like him than a majority party with people like Arlen Specter in it? How, then, do you intend to pass conservative legislation?

Actually, DeMint didn’t says Senators who all thought like him, but rather, “”I would rather have 30 Republicans in the Senate who really believe in principles of limited government, free markets, free people, than to have 60 that don’t have a set of beliefs.”

I wouldnt’ agree with DeMint that far, because in that situation you lose 70-30. I’d like there to be 30 Senators like Jim DeMint and Tom Coburn, 22 like my Senators Jim Risch and Michael Crapo who are not always right but most of the time get it right and their hearts are in the right place, seven like Norm Coleman and George Voinovich who are squishy on some issues but can win their seats, and two like the ladies from Maine who we only keep around because we couldn’t possibly get anyone more conservative.

John Hawkins has a pretty good piece on this I’d reccomend:

The majority of Republican voters are conservative and we provide most of the money, the volunteers, the ideas, the energy, and the enthusiasm. We conservatives are involved with politics because we have principles and ideals we believe in deeply and want to see them implemented.

Cutting to the chase, we conservatives feel deeply betrayed by what has happened over the last 8 years. The GOP managed to get control of all three branches of government and other than a couple of great Supreme Court Justices, the Right has very little to show for it.

We suffered through Bush’s selection of Harriet Miers, the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan, the GOP trying to force amnesty and open borders on the country, growing deficits, increasing government, a GOP sponsored takeover of banks, a President who refused to defend himself or conservatism publicly, and a “Republican elite” in DC who often seemed to hold their biggest supporters in contempt.

Let me give you a comparable example:

Imagine you’re the owner of a small business and you have a problem employee (the Republican Party). He shows up late. He takes two hour lunches. He won’t do his work. He makes fun of you to the other employees. It gets so bad that it affects your business and you start to lose money, but unfortunately, with the job market in your area, replacing him would be almost impossible.

Now, after a few months of this, how much patience are you going to have with this guy when you ask him why he isn’t doing what you told him to do? Zero, right?

Well, that’s where conservatives are with the Republican Party. We’re not interested in excuses. Exhortations to “be reasonable” aren’t going to work. After eight years of being sneered at by arrogant incompetents who owe their jobs to us, we’re not really in the mood for compromise.

Which brings us to the moderates in the GOP. Make no mistake about it, the GOP needs moderate voters and moderate politicians. We cannot expect a hard core conservative to win a district where Democrats outnumber Republicans 3 to 2. We can’t expect a Republican senator from Vermont or California to be as conservative as a Republican senator from Oklahoma or Georgia. Yes, people like this can make conservatives pull their hair out at times, but it’s impossible for us to have a majority or get things done without them.

However, the flip side to this is that moderates are not the majority of Republicans, they’re not ideologically coherent as a group, and they simply don’t bring enough manpower, money, or energy to the table to drive a successful political party. What that means is moderates have to be the Robin to our Batman. Conservatives, who have stronger beliefs, more numbers, and just bring so much more to the Party are not going to happily fall in line over the long haul in a moderate Republican Party.

Indeed, if moderates want to win and have seats, conservatives need to be happy at the results of the people they elected and you need a thriving conservative movement that’s actually accomplishing something worthwhile. If that’s happening, you don’t have huge challenges to moderates.

On moderates, I would probably also have a narrower of moderates in most cases, somebody in the Al D’Amato/Norm Coleman range (60-80%) rather than people like Specter.  And folks like Snowe and Collins can be tolerated only if that’s the best we can get.

In addition, I think there are some things that can generate some worthy pariah status. Speaking of which, Senator Olympia Snowe writes in the New York Times:

It is for this reason that we should heed the words of President Ronald Reagan, who urged, “We should emphasize the things that unite us and make these the only ‘litmus test’ of what constitutes a Republican: our belief in restraining government spending, pro-growth policies, tax reduction, sound national defense, and maximum individual liberty.” He continued, “As to the other issues that draw on the deep springs of morality and emotion, let us decide that we can disagree among ourselves as Republicans and tolerate the disagreement.”

OF course, Snowe quotes this to argue, “Hey, lay off on Collins and me like Reagan said.” It seems Senator Snowe hasn’t bothered to read the actual quote. It’d have some validity if Pat Toomey’s primary reason for a primary challenge to Specter was abortion, but it wasn’t. Voters began to call Specter “Benedict Arlen” when he voted for a $787 billion stimulus package that he, Snow, and Collins could have killed. This was the final straw for Pennsylvania conservative.

How can you claim to be for “restrained government spending” when you support $787 billion monstrosity that’s primary function is to be a Christmas tree for every liberal interest under the sun. This betrayal came in exchange for parochial Maine and Pennsylvania pork, unconcerned with the national interests. Don’t claim defense under any quotes about “restraining government spending” after voting for Obama’s stimulus.

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The Specter of Betrayal

Posted by Adam Graham on April 29, 2009

Podcast Show Notes

Specter joins the Democrats

Obama’s broken web promise

Can’t keep track of the scandals without a scorecard

Chris Dodd thinks you’re stupid

The White House’s flyover folly

Obama abets union corruption.

A scientific advance makes dialysis easier.

Click here to listen, click here to download. 

 

Posted in Podcast, Politics-Future of Conservatism | Leave a Comment »

Good Riddance

Posted by Adam Graham on April 29, 2009

I take second place to no one on independence voting. But, it is my view that the organizational vote belongs to the party which supported the election of a particular Senator. I believe that is the expectation. And certainly it has been a very abrupt party change, although they have occurred in the past with only minor ripples, none have caused the major dislocation which this one has.

When I first ran in 1980, Congressman Bud Shuster sponsored a fundraiser for me in Altoona where Congressman Jack Kemp was the principal speaker. When some questions were raised as to my political philosophy, Congressman Shuster said my most important vote would be the organizational vote. From that day to this, I have believed that the organizational vote belonged to the party which supported my election.

When the Democrats urged me to switch parties some time ago, I gave them a flat “no.” I have been asked in the last several days if I intended to switch parties. I have said absolutely not.

Senator PHIL GRAMM faced this issue when he decided to switch parties. He resigned his seat, which he had won as a Democrat, and ran for reelection as a Republican. As he told me, his last vote in January 1983 was for the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and he voted for Tip O’Neill with the view that he was elected as a Democrat and should vote that way on organizational control. Even though, he intended to become a Republican and would have preferred another person to be Speaker.

To repeat, I intend to propose a Senate rule which would preclude a change in control of the Senate when a Senator decides to vote with the opposing party for organizational purposes.

One other aspect does deserve comment, and that is the issue of personal benefit to a changing Senator. In our society, political arrangements avoid the consequences of similar conduct in other contexts.-Senator  Arlen Specter in 2001

My first reaction to the departure of Arlen Specter was, “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”  and my feeling remains the same. Specter’s career ACU rating was 45%. That means that 55% of the time he voted against the conservative position. I’ll buy the premise that someone who votes with 80% of the time is our friend. Some who votes with us 45% is not.

Specter’s decision to switch parties once again makes a fool of President Bush and Senator Santorum for all their efforts to save Specter. Specter looks like a hypocrite because of his stance in 2001. He knows his seat properly belongs to the Pennsylvania GOP, but acts like its his own personal fiefdom.

Of course, I know one of my front page colleagues has shouted (and I paraphrase), “You freaking idiots! Specter won a Primary 30 years ago! That should be it. Once he’s in, to hell with choosing your Representatives, Specter should be the GOP nominee for life. You don’t have a say anymore and if you challenge an incumbent, you’re an idiot.”

Or perhaps, I take him out of context. I believe that power flows from the governed and I don’t believe an aristocracy of continual re-nomiantion for someone who betrays time and time again the principles for which members of the political party stand.

In his leaving statement, Specter said he was elected as part of Ronald Reagan’s big tent. Of course, the big tent phrase and philisophy was advanced by post-Reagan GOP Boss Lee Atwater. Reagan did however address a situation like Specter’s in 1975:

A political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency, or simply to swell its numbers.

I do not believe I have proposed anything that is contrary to what has been considered Republican principle. It is at the same time the very basis of conservatism. It is time to reassert that principle and raise it to full view. And if there are those who cannot subscribe to these principles, then let them go their way.

I guess all we can say to Arlen Specter is thanks for listening.

Toomey 2010.

Posted in Politics-Future of Conservatism | Leave a Comment »

Your Tax Dollars Hard at Work-Covering up Child Abuse

Posted by Adam Graham on April 28, 2009

Lila Rose is interviewed by Glenn Beck about her going undercover in Tennessee as a 14 year-old and a Planned Parenthood counselor to go and lie in court in order to get an abortion. Planned Parenthood defenders swear on a stack of Bibles that this is an isolated incident. But this is the eighth clinic around the nation. How long does this have to go on until it’s consdered a fundamental cultural problem within that organization that should cost it taxpayer’s funding?

Posted in Abortion, Video Blogging | Leave a Comment »

JFK v. Barack Obama

Posted by Adam Graham on April 27, 2009

Reading through some quotes from John F. Kennedy, I was struck by how much the Democrats had changed over the years. Take this quote:

Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men.

Can anyone imagine Obama saying that? Or consider this statement of clarity that shows a serious understanding of foreign policy:

Domestic policy can only defeat us; foreign policy can kill us.

Obama takes foreign policy so lightly as if it’s an international PR event. Consider these other JFK quotes that Obama could never utter with any credibility:

“In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility – I welcome it.”

“Israel was not created in order to disappear – Israel will endure and flourish. It is the child of hope and the home of the brave. It can neither be broken by adversity nor demoralized by success. It carries the shield of democracy and it honors the sword of freedom.

“It is an unfortunate fact that we can secure peace only by preparing for war.

“Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.

“The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission.”

The tax on capital gains directly affects investment decisions, the mobility and flow of risk capital… the ease or difficulty experienced by new ventures in obtaining capital, and thereby the strength and potential for growth in the economy.

There is always inequality in life. Some men are killed in a war and some men are wounded and some men never leave the country. Life is unfair.

From JFK to BHO, the story of the decline of a great political party into madness.

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