Wednesday, October 31, 2012

GOP (Grand Old Pumpkin)

Polling By Yard Sign

Admittedly, the presence or absence of yard signs is an unscientific way to measure a candidate's support. But especially when the same area is considered over time, it guages enthusiasm.

My neighborhood leans to the right.  In 2008, however, the number of Obama signs startled and alarmed me. I had never seen that many signs for a Democrat in this area.

Obama ended up polling better in our neighboring precincts than any other Democrat (on a national ticket) in the last dozen years, to my recollection. The big up-tick in yard signs pre-figured the vote tally in these precincts.

This year, I have not seen a single sign for Obama in my neighborhood. Not one. The composition of the neighborhood has not changed in four years, but support for the president has.

I made a point of driving by homes of die-hard progressives. No Obama sign. Now, it's hard to imagine some of these people voting for Romney.  It's also hard to imagine these voters staying home on Election Day.

What I think has happened is that (1) Obama's support has shrunk and (2) even among his hard-core supporters, there is a certain embarrassment to publicly support him. (And no, this has nothing to do with his race; voters didn't suddenly notice he is half-Black.)

It's possible, of course, that what I perceive as embarrassment -- for incompetence and a lousy record -- could be disappointment that he let the base down by not governing far enough to the left.  There are those progressives who continue to insist that the problem with the Stimulus is that it wasn't big enough.

The cause is less important than the effect. Whether it's from embarrassment or disappointment, there is a big drop in suburbanites willing to post an Obama sign in their yard. That cannot be a good sign for the president.

Monday, October 29, 2012

What Did He Know and When Did He Know It?

Benghazi is now the word that will define the Obama presidency.  If he wins, he deserves to be impeached over the death of four Americans at our Libyan consulate.  Indeed, impeachment is probably the only way that we will ever learn what happened.  Heaven knows the MSM, in its efforts to ignore the story, is committing journalistic malpractice.

The administration cannot keep its story straight.  That old adage about sticking to the truth because its easier to memorize, someone should have shared that with the president before he became president.

Bing West at NRO highlights these growing inconsistencies.  For several weeks, the president said he ordered increased security to our embassies in the region the morning after the attack. This past Friday in Denver, however (October 26), Obama said "The minute I found out what was happening . . . I gave the directive," Obama said, "to make sure we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to do. I guarantee you everybody in the CIA and military knew the number one priority was making sure our people were safe."

Note the shift in the timeline.

The fascinating thing about Benghazi is that it reveals a thirst for the truth on the part of ordinary Americans. Thus, as the facts of the story come out -- thanks to Fox News, Talk Radio and the blogosphere -- the story is shared by social media. Facebook and Twitter are serving a role that the New York Times once did.  It is sad to see the great media institutions of this country so determined to not do their duty; it is downright unpatriotic.

Of course, we knew that the MSM idolizes Obama and wants to protect him, and ensure his reelection.  But people died.  Americans, on U.S. sovereign territory, died while their pleas for help were ignored. Some would call that newsworthy.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Andy Barr Has Pulled Ahead!

In the most competitive race in the Commonwealth, Republican challenger Andy Barr has pulled ahead of Congressman Ben Chandler.

According to Pure Politics, Barr is leading for the first time in the race. Barr leads 45 to 41 -- just a bit more than the margin of error (3.49 percent).

For those of you in the 6th Congressional District who have supported Barr in the past -- because he votes like a Republican -- it is time to step up and add a Republican to Kentucky's Congressional Coalition.  It won't make a difference in who controls the House of Representatives, not this time.  But it could in the future.

This district was gerrymandered to make it safer for Barr. Therefore, it is that much important that all Republicans and conservatives turn out to vote for Andy Barr.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hipster Obama Returns to Leno

The Obama of Old was back last night on Jay Leno.  After watching three debates, 90 minutes at a pop, it was startling to see an Obama who was not seething with rage at being called to account for his lousy record..  Plainly, Jay Leno evokes a different reaction in the president than Mitt Romney.

No more President Petulant -- just smooth, oily smooth confidence: Hey, I hang out with Beyonce and JayZ!  Hollywood is my second home! I belong here! He looked so at home, in fact, that it was unpresidential.

The contrast between Hipster Obama and Debate Obama made me appreciate a quality in Mitt Romney I had overlooked:  his constancy.  Romney's demeanor stays much the same regardless of context.

Obama, on the other hand, has been revealed in the debates as a phony.  That laid back guy, so cool, is at his core mean and condescending.  That ugly side was tucked safely away last night.

And no wonder.  Jay Leno was just shy of fawning.  To be sure, we expect him to be respectful of the President of the United States, no matter who holds the office.  Leno, however,  had the first opportunity to ask Obama about Donald Trump's offer.  Instead, Leno opened the segment with a lame joke:  I guess you're here to ask NBC to sell the network to Donald Trump, or something along those lines.

Obama later made a similarly lame joke that the reason Donald Trump doesn't like him is because when they were boys growing up in Kenya, they played soccer, and Trump wasn't very good.

Leno is no journalist; he doesn't pretend to be a journalist.  But comedy is about truth. He had an opportunity to get at the truth and he didn't even make an attempt.

I will not watch Leno again.  He's no conservative; we never thought otherwise.  I did, however think that he was fair, and patriotic.  Last night he proved me wrong.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Awaiting the Last Debate

Tonight will present the electorate two distinctly different views of America:  a land of Exeptionalism, or a land  which seeks to appease the bullies of the world with apologies.

Mitt Romney needs to hold his own tonight to preclude Obama momentum. It would be preferable, of course, for Romney to seal the deal.  Romney always shows up to his debates. But after the first debacle of a debate, we can expect that Obama will also show up.

We know that Romney will raise questions about Benghazi. This is a real problem for Obama, because assuming one believes that he and his regime have been honest about what happened, they still look incompetent for allowing the murder of four Americans to take place in our embassy, which is our sovereign territory.

Now that we know that the terrorist attack stretched on for seven hours, questions are being raised -- by CBS, no less -- about why our military didn't rescue our diplomats.

Could it be that helicopters rescuing Americans off the roof of the embassy would look too much like the Fall of Saigon?

Obama will drop the names of all the foreign leaders he's met; this is when a president can appear most presidential.  Romney will, or should respond, with how Obama dissed Netanyahu to go on the View or whatever banal celebrity show.

Look for Obama to make fun of Romney's comments about the state of security for the London Olympics.

Romney's probably too much of a gentleman to raise the point, but speaking of London, recall when the Obamas gave Queen Elizabeth an iPod? That was shortly after they gave the British Prime Minister dvds -- in the wrong format!  It would be hysterically funny but for the fact that this is our president, our country, embarrassing himself (and all of us).

Obama will try to equate Romney with George W. Bush.  We saw a precursor of that in the last debate, and Romney handled it superbly.  The point Romney needs to make is, as Reagan put it, peace through strength.  We are safest we are strongest.  That strength deters aggression and makes war less, not more likely.

Here's what we need to do between now and the end of the debate:  pray for Mitt Romney.  Pray for America.


Andy Barr Closing On BenChandler

The C-J  ran two pieces yesterday on the Andy Barr - Ben Chandler race in Kentucky's 6th Congressional District. (I'm not providing the link because that rag does not deserve the traffic.)  Even the liberal apologist C-J concedes that the race is very tight.

But for the deal Hal Rogers cut with Greg Stumbo to gerrymander the district in favor of Chandler, Barr would be winning.  He still might win it, depending on turnout and Romney's coat-tails.

This is the closest race in Kentucky. Regardless of your Congressional district, this is a race where your donation could affect the outcome.  And if you have any time, contact the Barr campaign to see if you can help with turnout. Click here to help.

Friday, October 19, 2012

NRO Gives Andy Barr a Shout Out; Let's Give Andy Some $

National Review has plugged Andy Barr in a piece that makes Ben Chandler look desperate.  The NRO article, called  Lying in Kentucky,  highlights the dueling campaign ads over coal.

Here's the background. Barr ran an ad that featured coal miner Heath Lovell; this ad made the point that Democrats' anti-coal policies are killing the coal industry in Kentucky and causing the loss of thousands of good jobs. Chandler responded witha n ad alleging that Lovell is not a coal miner..

In point of fact, Lovell has been a coal miner since age 18.  He has also moved up the ladder of his company and is now CEO. In that capacity, he still keeps up his miner certification and goes underground at least weekly. Lovell threatened to sue the Chandler campaign for defamation.  Chandler ultimately pulled the ads.(Disclosure:  I represented Lovell in his demand letter to the Chandler campaign, discussed below.)

Here are excerpts from the NRO article:

Oscar Wilde once said that the “greatest of all sins is stupidity.” Certainly, knowing of what you speak is at a premium these days, and it appears from their reaction to Lovell that the Democratic party has perhaps spent a little too much time constructing cartoon villains. This, combined with a perfect cast of progressive bogeymen — “a CEO,” “donations to the Republican candidate,” “coal,” “mining corporations,” etc. — pushed Ben Chandler and his coterie prematurely to the fainting couch.. . .

And he’s [Lovell] not lying when he says that he is a third-generation Kentucky coal miner who has been working the mines since he was 18 years old: “That was my hard hat in the video,” he told theNew York Times. “That was not some costume that I’ve put on. I still go underground and keep up my training.” In honesty, he added, “I still consider myself a coal miner.” So, for that matter, does the state of Kentucky, which confirmed that Lovell is a “Kentucky Certified Underground Coal Miner,” a “Kentucky Certified Mine Foreman,” a “Kentucky Certified Mine Instructor,” and a “Kentucky Certified Electrician.”

At this, Chandler shifted his attack. Oh, he said, did I say you weren’t “a miner”? I meant that you weren’t an “Estill County coal miner.” This time Chandler was right, although, given that there are no mines in Estill County and that Lovell had never claimed to be any such thing, one can hardly blame him for being guilty on both counts.

These unfortunate facts having been excavated, Barr asked the Chandler campaign if it wouldn’t mind removing the “false and defamatory ad,” and Lovell sent Chandler a strongly worded “cease and desist” letter.” Under intense pressure, Chandler agreed and pulled the ad in late September, quickly shifting his focus to the more traditional Barr-wants-to end-Medicare approach and, in doing so, restoring harmony in both the political universe and the sixth district of Kentucky — for now, at least.

What is significant here is that the Andy Barr race is again getting national publicity-- as it did when he lost by a few hundred votes two years ago.

Notwithstanding gerrymandering of the district lines to shore up Chandler, Barr has a real shot at winning -- particularly if Romney's coattails are long enough, which I think could happen.

It is therefore time for conservatives, whether or not you live in the 6th District, to donate to Andy Barr. Click here to contribute.

Why Romney Will Win

An old friend said something that made me realize that Romney will win, and why.  She said that as an ideological liberal -- who had presumably voted for Obama four years ago -- she wanted to vote for him.  From the standpoint of pure ideology, she wanted to support him again.

But when she looked at the reality of her family's finances, she realized she could not.  She looked at how their insurance premiums had gone up, and the financial pressures that Obamacare will put on her husband's small business.

She looked at what the rising cost of gas is doing to the family budget as she tries to shuttle her kids to school and activities.  She looked at the unemployment rate and what that does to her children's prospects for finding a decent job. She considered the amount of debt that her children and grandchildren will have to shoulder, and the fact that Social Security and Medicare will not be there for her retirement unless something changes.

In sum, she realized that she could not afford four more years under an Obama administration. He was a grand experiment -- she had believed in hope and change.  But the real-life consequences were, as Joe Biden put it, burying her and the middle class.

So with great sadness, disappointment and regret, she will not vote for Obama again.  Will she vote for Romney or just stay home?  The tone of her remarks leads me to believe that she will hold her nose and vote from Romney.  But even if she stays home, the evolution of this past Obama supporter tells me that Romney will win.

This is not so much a vote for Romney, or a vote against Obama.  In the British Parliamentarian sense, it is a vote of No Confidence in Obama.

The so-called Republican War on Women -- all the Obama talk about Lady Parts -- ignores that many women voters are mothers, and stewards of the family budget. This segment of electorate has come to realize that another vote for Obama will carry a price tag they can no longer pay, even if the ideological purist in them wishes they could.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Romney Won On the Libya Question

Many conservatives were disappointed that Romney did not hammer home the fact that Obama was obfuscating on Libya during Debate No. 2.  I was not worried, because we have an entire debate geared to foreign policy next Monday.

Further, the news coverage all day yesterday focused on the issue in a way that made Obama and his cronies look either incompetent or dishonest, depending on how charitably one views this administration.

It didn't help Obama that a Muslim terrorist wannabe tried to attack the New York Fed yesterday.  The notion that Obama has al Qaeda on the ropes now has been disproved -- thank God, without the loss of more innocent life in a city that has lost too much to terrorists.

That whole concept of the re-set button did not work  Democrats get mad whenever conservatives use Obama's middle name, Hussein.  In point of fact, however, Obama banked on his name making the Islamo-fascists feel all warm and fuzzy about America.  It did not work:  they still hate us, want to kill us and want to destroy our way of life.
In addition to Libya, Romney must focus in next week's debate on what Condi Rice has called the greatest threat to our national security:  the deficit.Even Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recognizes that the American cannot remain a super-power with our deficit.

Finally, Romney needs to reiterate that he will stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel. Obama's treatment of Netanyahu has been a disgrace. For anyone who cares about the survival of Israel, that should be reason enough to vote against Obama. 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

You Don't Have to Settle

I thought last night's debate was pretty much a draw.  Obama started off strong, but after about forty minutes, Romney was clearly getting under his skin. He looked petulant for the remainder of the debate.

Obama's response on Libya was a demonstrable falsehood, as anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to the murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens well knows. The debate schedule is working to Romney's favor:  the final debate is on foreign policy.  With each passing day, the terrorist attack in Libya and the Obama administration's incompetence and obfuscation of it looks worse and worse.  Romney will have ample opportunity to make that point next week.

Of course, most voters are focused on the economy.  Libya, however, is Exhibit 2 in why this administration needs to go.

I hope that in the next debate they use podiums.  I found the stalking around the stage off-putting.  That moment when the candidates got in each other's faces was uncomfortable to watch.

The selection of questions was tilted to favor Obama.. (Pay equity?  Really?)  But as Republicans, we're used to that.

Romney had the best line of the night:  You don't have to settle.  It summed up the mediocrity and incompetence of this administration, and the patheticness of its so-called recovery  It reminded Americans that we can be great - it evoked American Exceptionalism in a way that was Reaganesque.  Romney and Ryan need to hit that theme relentlessly between now and the election.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Vice Presidential Debate in Pictures

Click on any picture to view it in full screen.

Pictured above is a crowd surrounding the MSNBC stage.

This is the closest Centre will ever get to hosting a College Game Day.

Through all the commotion, Lincoln remained in one place reading his book.

"I always feel like somebody's watching me."

Chris Matthews walking to the stage.

Chris Matthews with Michael Steele

With all of the Obama and Romney signs is a Gary Johnson sign

The Crowd is taking their places for the debate until...

An unknown man climbed into a tree and began shouting anti-abortion comments.

In a short amount of time, hundreds of people were surrounding the tree. 
A ladder was put up to the man; however, no one climbed up it.
I guessed they hoped he would come down...

After some time, everyone eventually sat down to watch the 

debate with the man in the tree shouting his commentary.

As of the end of the debate, the man was still in the tree.

Joe Biden is a Mean SOB

We went down to Centre College to watch the  Vice Presidential debate. Joe Biden disgraced his office. Now, I expected him to be all smiling geniality, to try to make Paul Ryan feel good about getting stabbed.

What I did not expect was him baring his capped teeth, seemingly grinning at oddly inappropriate times -- like a discussion of  greatest threat facing the world:  the prospect of a nuclear armed Iran.

Biden's incessant interruptions made him look downright thuggish. I wished Paul Ryan had pushed back harder on the interruptions -- or that we'd had a real moderator, as opposed to a stooge.

Nonetheless, for Ryan to remain as calm and focused as he was in these circumstances was extraordinary.

Joe, as we expected, just sat there and made stuff up. Some of his lies were so blatant that we didn't need to wait for the fact-checkers. Iran does indeed have weapons to deliver a nuclear payload to Israel-- has for years. And Obamacare does infringe upon the free exercise rights of Catholic institutions, as set forth in the complaint in Notre Dame's lawsuit.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Scoping Out the Veep Debate

I just returned from Danville, KY, where the Vice Presidential debate takes place tomorrow night at Centre College. I can't speak for the candidates, but Centre and Danville are ready.  The town and campus looked spectacular:  flags and bunting waving in the October breeze, chrysanthemums everywhere. Not too many students to be seen, as this is the last day of mid-terms.

Meanwhile, we learn that the debate moderator, Martha Raddatz from ABC, hosted "Barry Obama" at her wedding reception. It's true that Raddatz divorced and remarried, but still:  by what measure can she pretend to be objective?  I will assume, for sake of argument, that the Commission on the Debates was unaware of this fact.  Nonetheless, the conflict of interest is so manifest that one wonders why Raddatz even threw her name in the hat.  She's a good foreign correspondent; she should have known better.

So what should we expect tomorrow night?  Joe Biden will try to balance geniality with attack dog mode.  We'll hear that he's just a blue-collar boy form Scranton.  He'll refer to the Republican War on Women (the Violence Against Women Act is one of his signature pieces of legislation.)  He will tell us that Paul Ryan is going to end Social Security and Medicare because he has no compassion for the disabled and elderly.  And he'll try to drive a wedge between Ryan and Romney on the budget and entitlements.

Ryan needs to keep drawing the debate back to the Obama-Biden record.  He needs to call Biden out for distorting how Republicans would reform entitlements and health care.  And that's exactly where the brilliance of Ryan's selection will become evident.  Had Romney selected a governor as his running-mate, he or she would not have the command of the budget Ryan has and therefore would have a much dicier time spotting when Joe Biden is making stuff up (which he will). Ryan is so well-versed in the budget that he can spot the lie and call Biden out with confidence.  The trick for Ryan will be to do this in a way that doesn't look ugly.

Ultimately, the Vice Presidential debate is unlikely to change much.  We will wait in suspense to see if Joe gives us one of his gaffes. He's been practicing and practicing to reduce the odds of  that happening.  But any time Joe Biden opens his mouth, the possibility of him inserting foot is ever present. I'm reminded of Dr. Seuss:  "Left foot, left foot, left foot, right!  Feet in the morning, feet at night!"  Here's hoping the Vice President brings two left feet to Danville tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Rand PAC Presses on Foreign Aid

Senator Rand Paul's political action committee, Rand PAC, has launched a wave of ads against Democratic Senators.

Specifically, Paul's ad takes issues with Democrats who insist on giving taxpayers' money to regimes that want to kill us and destroy our way of life.

Good for Paul for not only doing his part to help Republicans attain a majority in the Senate, but for pressing for a reform to our foreign policy -- and budget -- that is long over-due.

The Daily Caller notes:
The first two targets are Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Sen. Bill Nelson in Florida. Ads in other battleground states may be forthcoming.

“While they tear down and burn the American flag in Egypt and shout ‘death to America,’” the narrator in the West Virginia spot intones, “Joe Manchin votes to provide U.S. taxpayer aid to Egypt.”
While Pakistan imprisons and tortures the hero who helped us get Osama bin Laden,” the ad continues, “Joe Manchin votes to send billions of our taxpayer dollars to Pakistan.”
“While radical Islamists burn our embassy and kill our ambassador in Libya, Joe Manchin votes to send more taxpayer money to Libya.”

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

B.O's Bingo

Update: looks like we can cross off a few. (Refresh for more)

1.   Uh, I, Uh, Ummm (x?)
2.   Worst Economy Since The Great Depression (x3)
3.   Back From The Brink
4.   I, Me, My (x?)
5.   Inherited (x2)
6.   Crisis (x3)
7.   Historic (x3)
8.   Previous Administration (x2)
9.   Saved or Created
10. You Can Keep Your Own Plan

Huck to Help KY House Candidates

Former Gov. Mike Huckabee  will be the guest of honor at a fundraiser for Republican House Caucus. Irv and Cathy Bailey will host the event at their home this Saturday, October 6, 2012 at 6:00

At $ 50 a person, the event is priced low enough to draw a younger crowd than some of the more expensive events. You can pay at the door.

Here's the part that sounds fun:  the event will include a blue grass band and Huckabee is rumored to be bringing his guitar!  It will be the Kentucky equivalent of Huckabee's "Little Rockers," the garage band of Fox News employees that play on Huckabee's talk show.

It's a great cause. The future of the Commonwealth has languished for too long by the Democrat House Caucus. It's time to send enough of them packing for Republicans to take the majority.