I have an appointment this morning. I’ll return tomorrow.
Tom Coburn (R-OK) announced he will be leaving the Senate at the end of this year. Coburn has been battling cancer for a number of years. The ink wasn’t dry on his announcement letter before the ‘Pub establishment declared who will be Coburn’s successor.
Earlier today, Congressman James Lankford announced his candidacy to replace Senator Coburn in Oklahoma. Groups like Senate Conservatives’ Fund and Madison Project (my day-job employer) pointed out that Lankford has gone along with the establishment leadership in the House on a number of critical votes and that he’d offer more of the same in the Senate.
Lankford’s response is both peculiar and telling. Here is what he told The Hill’s Alexandra Jaffe:
“The different Washington, D.C.-based groups and the different special interest groups, they all want to be able to pick who they want to be a senator. They don’t speak for everyone, and they definitely don’t speak for Oklahomans,” he told The Hill in an interview on Monday. […]
But Lankford stood by his vote for the budget deal, which eased some of the sequestration cuts to the defense budget and other programs, as a vote “in favor of strong national defense.”
He suggested attacking him for that vote was an example of the way groups opposed to his candidacy “will loop votes together and try to say that they are something that they are not…that’s the Washington, D.C. game
Others in Oklahoma disagree with the choice by the Washington establishment.
To answer the question that keeps invading my vacation in the form of tweets, Facebook messages, texts, and emails [concerning Tom Coburn’s successor] — Congressman Jim Bridenstine. Jim is the guy I would support in an instant to replace Senator Coburn in Okalahoma. I don’t know whether he is running or not, but conservatives would be insane to not draft him into the race. In fact, I think conservatives should draft him, rally around him, and let the establishment be the side divided behind multiple candidates.
When Coburn ran for the Senate in 2004, the establishment rallied behind his opponent in the primary. Coburn was the outsider. But conservatives united behind him, rallied, and won. We need to do the same for Jim Bridenstine.
Jim’s a veteran, a friend, a solid conservative, and would continue Senator Coburn’s commitment to rooting out government waste, fraud, and abuse. He’d also stand with Senators Cruz and Lee to fight the fight that must be fought even against his own side over the size and scope of the federal government.
I don’t even have to consider other candidates in Oklahoma. In my mind, Jim is the only guy I’d want to support without reservation. I hope he’ll run. — RedState.
Oklahoma is another state where the ‘Pub establishment has declared who will run ignoring other candidates who are supported by the state’s grassroot conservatives. As in Kentucky, Ohio, Nebraska and many other states across the country, the line-up this year will not be Dem vs. Pub, but the Washington establishment vs. the states, conservatives, and the Tea Party.
Like the democrats, the ‘Pub establishment fears losing power, prestige and their place in the Ruling Class. McConnell, Boehner and the rest of the establishment have already allied themselves with Obama, Reid and the dems. They now support more spending, funding Obamacare, open immigration and all the other liberal agendas, anything to retain their seats and their position in the Washington power structure.
A number of people have asked me if there will be a 3rd party that will oppose those in Washington who have betrayed their constituents. The answer is yes, one exists. It is the party that is the one that has existed for 157 years, the Republican Party. It is the Washington establishment who has changed and deserves a new label—DemLites, perhaps, because none of them align with our historic, conservative, Republican principles.
The Republican Party needs no successor. It hasn’t changed, only those in Washington, those who have sold their souls to the liberal Washington elite to remain in power, that has changed.
I tried an experiment last night and it didn’t work. Like many folks who get older, sleeping can be a challenge. I had gotten in the habit this winter of taking a couple of Ibuprofen when I went to bed. That usually allowed me to get 4-5 hours of good sleep.
But, since I’ve been coughing for the last month and had been presribed a number of medications, my pill-taking aversion reappeared. I thought I could get by not taking Ibuprofen last night.
I was wrong. I still needed the two pills at bedtime.
So here it is, Monday morning, I’m bleary, when I finally got to sleep this morning, I overslept.
Bottom line: no post today. See you all tomorrow.
The first news item to cross my desk this morning was the announcement that Senator Tom Coburn, (R-OK), would leave the Senate at the end of the year. His term won’t expire until 2016, but due to a recurrence of his prostrate cancer, he’s leaving the Senate early. Erick Erickson of Red State calls Coburn the Horatius of Oklahoma.
With an unknown future, I can understand Coburn’s desire to spend more time with his family. I wish my so-called republican senator had Tom Coburn’s voting record and leadership.
I wish you well, Tom Coburn.
Union organizers lose another one. The International Association of Machinists attempted to organization an Amazon site in New Jersey and failed. As expected, the union claims it was all Amazon’s fault! In retrospect, that is true. Amazon provided a working environment that supported their employees, more than the union who only wanted their ‘take’ from the members paychecks.
Their unusual thug tactics failed.
Is It Hubris Or…? Undemocratic and dysfunctional Machinists’ union blames Amazon for employees’ rejection
Whether it is extreme hubris or blatantly deceptive spin, the International Association of Machinists does not seem to realize that, over the last several months, the union has done a number of things to sully its own reputation in the minds of its members—as well as the general public—which is likely costing it potential new members.
On Tuesday, a group of 27 Amazon workers employed by the company in Delaware overwhelmingly rejected representation by the Machinists in an NLRB-supervised election by 21-6.
According to union spokesman John Carr, the union’s loss was all the company’s fault.
The majority of 27 technicians at an Amazon fulfillment center in Middletown, Delaware, voted to reject an initiative to form a union under the auspices of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, said John Carr, a spokesman for the IAMAW. The vote, held late yesterday, was 21 to 6.
“That number is a clear reflection that the tactics Amazon and their law firm employed were very effective,” Carr said. “Under the intense pressures these workers faced on the shop floor, it was an uphill battle all the way.” [Emphasis added.]
Either Mr. Carr is completely ignorant of how the goings-on within his own union impact its reputation among potential new members or he is merely looking for a scapegoat to blame for his own union’s shortcomings.
In either case, events over the last several months within the Machinists’ union do not make a good case for the union to sell itself to union-free workers.
Guess the New Jersey employees weren’t too impressed with a union that jacked around its members as they have done with Boeing.
There were two stories in the news today about a theater overlooked by liberal media—the Western Pacific and the buildup of Chinese military forces. The Chinese declared an exclusion zone encompassing islands owned by Japan in addition to their claims in the South China Sea that covers territory claimed by a number of other nations including Viet Nam, Japan and the Philippine Islands.
Under our current non-leadership, our military forces have been degraded to the point that we can no longer secure the open seas nor support our allies in the Pacific. Japan is considering a massive buildup of their defense forces due to American military weakness.
Commander of Obama’s Asia pivot eyes military posturing by China
The Obama administration’s ballyhooed military “pivot” to Asia is running into some frank talk from the top U.S. commander in the Pacific.
Three years after the Pentagon said it was de-emphasizing Europe in favor of the Asia-Pacific region, NavyAdm. Samuel J. Locklear III said this week that U.S. dominance has weakened in the shadow of a more aggressive China.
Although Adm. Locklear said it is obvious that Chinese military power is growing, he suggested that it is unclear whether China will seek to be a hard adversary to the U.S. in the long term, so Washington should be working overtime on steering Beijing toward a cooperative security posture.
A new front in the civil war within the GOP has appeared in the Heartland. Mitch McConnell and his NRSC fired the opening shot at Nebraska conservative candidate Ben Sasse. Sasse, a well known conservative and healthcare policy expert, has drawn McConnell’s attention. The NRSC is now channeling funds to Sasse’s opponent.
Ben Sasse, the conservative candidate in Nebraska on the most recent cover of National Review and who has the backing of the Senate Conservatives Fund, RedState, and others, suddenly finds Mitch McConnell and the NRSC holding fundraisers for his opponent. Sasse, it should be noted, is widely considered a brainiac opponent of Obamacare and healthcare policy expert. — Red State.
…yesterday, the National Republican Congressional Committee blackballed Jamestown Associates from helping elect Republicans. The NRCC is joining the NRSC in attacking Jamestown. Why? Because Jamestown Associates has been working with conservative candidates the House and Senate GOP leadership opposes. — Red State.
How does McConnell and the establishment expect to win new ‘Pub seats in Congress when they are attacking their fellow republicans? Not surprisingly, the answer is: emulate the democrats—instead of repealing Obamacare, McConnell and his henchmen claim their aim is to ‘fix’ not repeal Obamacare.
Conservative and Republican affiliated groups have started the 2014 assault against Democrats who support Obamacare. At the very same time, it is increasingly clear Republicans are laying the groundwork to abandon their opposition to Obamacare.
The Business Roundtable, which has a great relationship with Republican Leaders, is now listing Obamacare as an entitlement worth preserving.
Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former economic advisor to John McCain and who opposed passage of Obamacare, has started a think tank premised on keeping, but fixing, Obamacare. Holtz-Eakin has the ear of Republican leaders. In 2009, Mitch McConnell appointed him to the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission.
The Chamber of Commerce is declaring it will work to fix, not repeal, Obamacare. In fact, just last week the head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said, “The administration is obviously committed to keeping the law in place, so the chamber has been working pragmatically to fix those parts of Obamacare that can be fixed.”
Concurrent to this, the Chamber of Commerce has begun funding candidates to beat conservatives in Republican primaries…
The establishment has gone so far to betrayal ‘Pub conservatives that they have aligned the NRSC, with the willing concurrence of the NRCC, with a democrat, and democrat funded, organization.
The Republican Main Street Partnership, headed by former Congressman LaTourette — who is a friend of Speaker John Boehner — is working with the Chamber and party leaders to target conservatives the party leadership finds troublesome. LaTourette has been parroting talking points from the National Republican Senatorial Committee about the Senate Conservatives Fund, Club for Growth, and others.
You see, the ‘Republican’ Main Street Partnership is funded by democrats: several unions, an Indian tribe, and a well-heeled democrat contributor. See my post from yesterday.
These act lead to my next segment of today’s post. In my mail, yesterday, was an envelope from the NRC wanting me to renew my ‘membership’ and contribute to the party. I tore it up and trashed it.
I will not contribute to the NRC. I will contribute to specific candidates whom I think worthy of my money. I may contribute to the local ‘Pub organizations. I may attend their fund raisers, I may contribute directly to their election campaigns. Maybe.
I will impose litmus tests for every candidate. I am personal friends with some at the local and state level. I will help them remain in office because I know they will pass my litmus test.
For the rest of the ‘Pubs, they will have to work to get my support, my money, and my vote. It is very likely, like so many did in 2012, that my ballot in 2014 will have blank spaces next to some offices. By blank space I mean I skipped voting for that office.
Unless there is a winning conservative primary opponent next summer, the 4th Congressional District may be one of those offices that I will skip. Unless Ms Hartzler renounces her allegiance to the Washington establishment and proves, by her voting record, that it is a real renouncement, I will not be voting for her in 2014.
I supported and endorsed her in 2010 and 2012. No more. When there is no difference in the ‘Pub establishment and their willing helpers to the democrats, why bother voting for that office?
I’ve been a republican all my adult life. I’ve voted republican for 45 years. I still am a republican, a conservative…but my party is no longer.
At times I feel like channeling Edward R. Murrow. There aren’t too many people who still remember viewing and hearing him. I’m one of those.
Murrow had a news program, See it Now, on CBS in the 1950s. Mom and Dad didn’t have a television on The Farm at that time. Instead, we’d drive over to Grandma’s place and watch TV there. Dad liked to watch Murrow and Dragnet. Mom liked listening to Murrow on the radio but she was never a TV fan. She’d rather read.
Imagine…instead of hearing Murrow say, “This is London,” as he would report during World War II, imagine him saying, “This is…,” and then pick a US location. Somewhere in Texas, Missouri, anywhere except Washington. In our version of history, image reporting as it was during WW II. Think of the parallels. Britain is now the United States. In the imagined parallel, Washington must be Berlin. With that world in mind, we have two items in the news today; news from the front.
Conservatives forces are making gains on the continent…er, in Washington. Reports from the field have conservatives strengthening their positions as they advance on establishment positions. After a successful counter-attack led by Senator Ted Cruz, we have this news release.
By TIMOTHY P. CARNEY | JANUARY 14, 2014 AT 6:30 PM
Cold cash, together with control of institutions, is what makes the Establishment the Establishment. But in the current Republican civil war, the insurgents have secured their own money pipelines, and they control their own institutions – which means the GOP leadership and its allies in the business lobby have a hard fight in front of them.
The firing and hiring of conservative staffer Paul Teller makes it clear that the anti-establishment has built its own establishment.
Teller was a House staffer for more than a decade, and was longtime executive director of the conservative Republican Study Committee. The RSC always exerted a rightward pull on party leadership, but it is nonetheless a subsidiary of the party.
After the 2012 election, the Republican Establishment captured the RSC, in effect, by getting Congressman Steve Scalise elected chairman. Scalise is a conservative, but he is also a close ally of the party leadership – much more so than his predecessors Jim Jordan and Tom Price. Scalise immediately swept out most of the RSC staff.
Last month, Teller was accused of working with outside groups such as Heritage Action to whip RSC members – and Scalise showed Teller the door.
In the old days, this might have been a disaster for Teller. He had lost his job and landed on the wrong side of the party leadership. Anyone who picked up Teller would be spitting in the eye of the Establishment. But this week, Sen. Ted Cruz announced he had hired Teller as deputy chief of staff.
The Establishment no longer has the power it once had to demand obedience.
How did the party leadership maintain such power in the past? Basically with money. Party leaders had a near monopoly on access to money, both in terms of raising funds for candidates and landing jobs for individuals.
Floor leaders and committee chairmen have always been the GOP’s main contact point with corporations’ political action committees and lobbyists. If a member stays on the good side of party leaders, the leaders make a phone call to a lobbyist who throws the member a fundraiser.
Similarly, if a staffer always played nice with the Establishment, that brought with it job security: Even if your boss retired, you could land on your feet, as the leadership would recommend you for a job in another office, or K Street would hire you.
You can see how this would make dissenting staffers and members watch their words and actions. Sure, members were allowed to vote against the leadership – as long as the leadership didn’t need your vote. But at the end of the day, you had to play ball, otherwise you got no money for re-election, and no jobs for you or your staff.
But Teller landed on his feet — and today any conservative staffer disposed to fight the party leadership can hold out the same hope. The GOP Establishment has lost its monopoly, and the insurgents now have many bases of power – and thus many sources of money.
Conservative activist groups have always existed inside the GOP, but because they couldn’t raise and distribute large amounts of money, they functioned mostly through moral suasion – which means they were largely powerless. Eventually, these Beltway conservative groups grew dependent on the GOP, and instead of holding the party accountable, they often ended up being the establishment’s liaison to the conservative base.
Today’s conservative groups are fully armed, though. Thanks to advances in Internet fundraising and changes in campaign finance laws, the Senate Conservatives Fund, FreedomWorks, and the Club for Growth can raise and spend enough money to compete in GOP primaries with the Chamber of Commerce and lobbying firms.
Beyond these new pipelines of campaign cash, the insurgents now control institutions – institutions they created, and ones they took over. Jim DeMint, who founded the Senate Conservatives Fund in 2008, left Congress in 2013 to head the Heritage Foundation.
Heritage used to be a faithful ally of the GOP – at least when it counted most. Under DeMint, Heritage is a scourge of the GOP leadership and an enforcer of a hard limited-government line.
And the Senate offices of Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and Rand Paul are three insurgent beachheads on Capitol Hill. Being a senator doesn’t merely give one a vote — it gives these men the budget to staff a congressional office. As they gain seniority, the Tea Partiers will get control over budgets for committee staffs.
When a member’s re-election, or a staffer’s ability to pay the mortgage, doesn’t depend on the Establishment’s favor, the Establishment may need to find a new way to gain conservatives’ loyalty.
Another news report from the Front exposes an attempt by enemy agents to infiltrate conservative support organizations. The target of these infiltrators was to misdirect funds and reinforcements from conservatives. The infiltrators, funded and organized by liberal operatives, were exposed as reported below.
Steve LaTourette, a former congressman and friend of John Boehner, runs the “Republican Main Street Partnership”. Note the word “Republican.”
As the left-wing Talking Points Memo reported a month ago, LaTourette and his Main Street Partnership have created an affiliated SuperPAC called “Defending Main Street PAC.” Along with the Chamber of Commerce and Republican Leaders, the Main Street Partnership wants to take out troublesome conservatives.
Defending Main Street PAC plans to raise $8 million in this election cycle; by contrast the Senate Conservatives Fund handled $12 million in 2012 and expects to raise even more this time around.
Note, first, that LaTourette spoke with a left-wing site to reveal his plans. Note second that Defending Main Street PAC has had to release its year end campaign finance numbers.
According to its fundraising report, Defending Main Street PAC received its money from a Democrat donor, a group of unions, and an Indian tribe.
- Bonderman, David gave $30000.00 – the Los Angeles Times referred to him as “David Bonderman, a significant contributor to Democrats, “
- Laborers’ Political League Education Fund gave $100000.00
- The Chickasaw Nation gave $50000.00
- International Union of Operating Engineers [EPEC] gave $250000.00
- Laborers’ International Union Of North America (LIUNA) PAC gave $150000.00
- MEBA PAF gave $15000.00 (Marine Engineers Beneficial Association)
- Working for Working Americans-Federal gave $250000.00 (Building Trades / carpenters PAC)
In other words, the “Republican” Main Street Partnership’s affiliated PAC intends to use George Soros connections and Democrat back groups’ money to defeat conservatives.
More troubling, the Republican Main Street Partnership has a lot of ties to Republican leaders. Again, folks, it is us versus them. You pick.
It is no longer sufficient nor wise to assume anyone claiming to be republican is working for our benefit and is a conservative. All too many ‘Pubs, elected using the Tea Part and other grassroot organizations, have turned out to be turn-coats. Instead of listening to and following the demands of their constituents, those who elected them, these turn-coats parrot the establishment line. In many cases, the turn-coats talk and agree with their constituents at home, while voting, in lock-step, with the establishment in Washington.
It is worse. The local party officials quake in fear of these turn-coats. They point to their massive campaign funds, funds gathered with the help of those local dupes, and declare the turn-coats are unbeatable. That may be true, if the local and state party organizations don’t disavow and work to present primary opponents to remove these traitors in our ranks.
Failure of the county and state parties will likely result in a repeat of 2012 in 2014 and 2016. The conservatives, feeling unrepresented and seeing no real difference between the two national parties, stay home. The dems retain the Senate, and may take back the House. It will be Pelosi back as Speaker and a repeat of 2008 through 2010.
Will it take a repeat of of 2012 to make the ‘Pubs listen? Or, in disgust, will conservatives leave the party forever, creating a new party that speaks for them. Only the republican officials can say.
It’s 1856, ‘Pubbies. Think on that.
Us vs. Them. A simple statement that carries so much within it. Us. Who are we? Are we the vast members of middle-America who see our family, friends and neighbors lose more and more under the despotic rule of the central government? Or, are we those of the dependency class, dependent on others for their livelihood and trapped in a situation that crept upon them slowly and unnoticed?
There are variations on both sides. Some of those middle-Americans are doing well. They have jobs, homes, and their debts and taxes are manageable. They cruise through life not noticing the fates and fares of those around them…until suddenly they too are affected. Affected by a sudden increase in debt, a loss of a planned bonus, business profits decrease and the expected pay increase never arrives, their employer raises the employee cost of benefits or ends them, resulting in changes of a comfortable life. Suddenly, there is stress and uncertainly of the future instead of the former complacency.
On the other side, many are forced into dependency. Stress increases. Families lose jobs and become dependent on unemployment insurance. Job seeking becomes more difficult. Openings are few and seemingly fewer. Personal debt increases as families attempt to maintain lifestyles that cannot be sustained.
Along with dependency comes more governmental intrusion. Benefits that had been assured now become ‘means tested’. Are you qualified to receive those benefits? When did you last look for work? How many companies have you visited? Called? Submitted a resume?
Then Murphy arrives to visit and personal finances drop even more.
At some point, sooner or later, a few people here, more over there, people begin to consider: how long can this continue? If you listen to democrats, all will be well if government grows and the rich “pay their fair share.” What the dems don’t mention is that there aren’t all that many rich to soak, and they already pay far more than their fair share.
The dems declare that all will be well if we just spend more. The great social programs of the last century, Roosevelt’s New Deal, Johnson’s Great Society, the actual trillions of dollars spent on these programs that have no record of success, are not failures. We just have not spent enough, yet, democrats say. Spend more, regulate more, control more, restrict alternatives, force the populace to behave as dictated.
Conservatives push for limitations: limitations of federal spending. Limitations on bureaucratic regulations, limits on governmental intrusion, a limit on spending. Conservatives strive for limits because they realize that one day the bills will come due and all the money in the nation won’t be able to cover those debts.
And finally there are the republicans. They declare all will be well if you elect us and throw the democrats out of office. We’ll continue all those spending programs because, in the end, we’re here for the power, not for the benefits of the governed. The argument begins. Solely for power? Not true, many within the establishment claim. True, says the party’s conservatives and point to Karl Rove, Crossroads, and the US Chamber of Commerce who, instead of attacking democrats and liberals, side with them against conservatives.
Us. vs. Them. Everyone has a different view. What will happen? Who will benefit? Who will be affected? Everyone has an opinion from the ghetto mother who believes her livelihood comes from Obama’s endless ‘stash’, to the Tea Party and grassroot organization who fear their nation is on the brink of collapse and civil war.
Where is the truth? Everyone of them—to that person.
This is an election year. In 2014, every member of the US House for representatives and thirty-three seats in the US Senate, is up for election. The ‘Pubs and dems are both aiming their campaigns at the same demographic groups—liberals and ‘moderates’, i.e., democrats. Both parties, now, actively work to displace, and remove conservatives from Congress. The last time, in 2012, the ‘Pubs did this, they lost—badly. Nearly 4% of the ‘Pubs core voters, those voters the ‘Pubs assumed would vote the big ‘R’, stayed home.
It is likely the same will happen in 2014. When there is no discernible differences between the two parties, why bother to vote of either one? The ‘Pubs assume the failure of Obamacare will be sufficient to garner enough votes to seize control of the Senate. An assumption not guaranteed.
From a political perspective, the Us, the conservatives, are now opposed by Them, the liberals, democrats, and the ‘Pub establishment. The result will be a continuation of the downward spiral of the economy and personal freedom. When that spiral hits bottom, it won’t be pretty.
‘Us vs. Them’ can be viewed as maintenance of the political status quo or a battle to regain control of governmental power. Entropy declares that the status quo cannot be maintained. It will change. The direction depends on…us.