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Entries in Republicans (9)

Tuesday
Nov132012

Carolyn McKinney - We let Democrats define the terms of our defeat

By Carolyn McKinney, chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus of New Hampshire

When Democrats set the terms of the 2012 campaign for state and federal offices, Republican leaders blew their horns about jobs and the economy and counted on their position of strength and the glaring weaknesses in their enemy’s lines to secure victory. Republicans lost because they forgot to tell the troops about the Democratic weaknesses. Democrats took advantage of the oversight and rolled over the field.

Democratic victories last Tuesday quite simply reflected a tactical failure of top-ticket Republicans to defend the party’s message. This wasn’t a failure of Republican principles, but a failure to define and defend Republican principles. Democrats successfully distracted voters with complete fabrications of reality, and Republicans let them do it without response.  

Predictably, Republican Party leaders assumed that the people had enough of the social issues and wanted to focus on the economy instead—and by in large, Republicans successfully governed on economic recovery issues during the past two years. Democrats understood the visceral nature of social issues and successfully tarnished liberty as the enemy of their carefully crafted relationship between business and government. Republicans didn’t respond, despite the prescient need. They thought that by ignoring the problem it would go away.

Even if it was a good idea—and I strongly contend that it is not—the Republican Party is never going to rid itself of social conservatives, and it won’t dismiss the libertarian faction either, if the libertarians don’t dismiss themselves, first. Due to the way the two-party system has been solidified in state and federal law, neither group has anywhere else to go if it wants any influence, and neither will the Republican Party have any influence without these two groups.

The only solution is for the Republican Party to fully embrace its platform, which is actually more conservative and libertarian than anything else. Had Republican leaders chosen to explain the Republican Party to voters, they just might have received some votes.

In other words, a “big tent” Republican Party includes moderates and the socially agnostic, but let’s be clear: the tent is held up by conservatives and libertarians. There is no tent without them. There’s just Democrats and Democrats-lite. I contend that New Hampshire truly wants neither—and so goes the nation.

Enough with the rhetoric, here’s some realism: Faced with the ludicrous and fallacious Democratic idea that Republicans want to end all abortions and take contraceptives away from women, Republicans should have explained that Roe v. Wade is the law of the land until it’s overturned. And at the same time, they should have explained that there are alternatives to abortion; that women deserve other options, such as child care services, especially if they’re going to college (tuition certainly does pay for it already). 

Republicans should have turned the tables on Democrats: “Who are the real extremists? Who removed from their platform the goal that abortion be ‘safe and rare’? Who supports living children being murdered when their body is already outside the womb? Who supports letting infants die on a surgical table because their abortion went wrong? Who wants taxpayers to foot the bill for this stuff? Really? Even if they morally object? Doesn’t a human being have an inalienable right to life, endowed by his or her Creator? So, tell me again why Democrats oppose Republican proposals to decrease the number of abortions in favor of alternative solutions that both respect women and favor life.”

Without a doubt, Democrats had the extreme agenda, but we didn’t tell voters about it! 

Let’s be clear: We Republicans can change some of our policy positions to more consistently represent the principles in our platform. On immigration, for instance, there millions of inalienably free human beings who simply want to live a better life in America, but our laws don’t allow it. While Republicans are known to support the rule of law, we are also known to be a group that favors Judeo-Christian values, which include love and charity. We must craft a common sense solution that balances the rule of law and the reality that these illegal immigrants must be treated with the dignity that we must afford to all human beings. We also must recognize that the large illegal immigrant population contributes to our economy in important ways, and we need to stop catering to the people who resist a common sense policy that allows for the free trade of labor across national boundaries. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not advocating for citizenship for all; that’s something that has to be earned. But a guest worker program would certainly go a long way to help the market meet its needs for labor without sacrificing national sovereignty or identity, and it would also be more conservative.

The bottom line is this: Republicans need to unite around their platform or they’ll all be lost to the isolation of their own personal perfection. There’s no doubt that herding cats is difficult, but that is the task for those who lead people who want to be free. Let’s hope they get it right next time, for the sake of us all.

Thursday
Aug042011

Andrew Hemingway: We need more Freshmen Republicans

Editors Note: Due to vacation this is late getting published, but the thoughts are still relevant.

The debt-ceiling debate isn't just a budgetary concern. This debate represents a philosophical conflict about the size and scope of government.

The American people cannot be reminded enough that their government currently owes $14 trillion, and the budget deficit for this year alone is $1.5 trillion. The accumulated debt is both a moral and financial problem that must be addressed head-on.

The Democrats are so enthralled by big government that when they look at the budget deficit, they see a lack of revenue. They crave ever more government programs that require always higher taxation. Republicans try to play nice far too often, resulting in false promises like those during Reagan’s presidency. The tax increases always come, but the spending reductions rarely see the light of day.

In this debate, Democrats understand the stakes, which is why they refuse to make any structural changes to entitlement programs and simply demagogue the issue. Their aim is to force Republicans to compromise on their principles by making them sign off on a plan that would raise taxes during poor economic times. This has a twofold effect: it makes Republicans complicit in any negative economic consequences and it paints them as disingenuous to their constituents.

The desires of the statists must be met with equally vigorous force.

Fortunately, there are 87 House Republican freshmen who are showing the rest of the party the way. They are behaving in a way that few establishment politicians understand. They are actually adhering to principle and faithfully keeping their campaign promises. The freshmen must have missed the memo explaining how it is okay to say one thing and do another, as many of their senior colleagues know only too well. Astonishingly, it appears the freshmen Republicans believe that the next generation is more important than their next election. They are showing the kind of political leadership this country so desperately needs.

At the same time that the freshmen Republicans show their colleagues what it actually means to be a Republican again, several of the old guard Republicans are far more interested in political strategy than doing the right thing for the country. After all, they're the ones who helped get us into this mess to begin with.

Our very own Charlie Bass oversaw the massive spending increases under Bush, and has continued in his passivity and utter lack of seriousness as the debt crisis continues to drag on. Unlike the 87 House Republican freshmen, he has taken the easy road and backed Boehner’s ill-conceived compromise giveaway. Once the bill reaches the Senate, Harry Reid is sure to amend it, adding all sorts of tax increases making the Republicans look foolish once again.

Before we go the way of Greece, Americans ought to take the necessary steps to bring this nation back from the brink. We need leaders with the courage to stand up and do what’s right, in spite of the vicious opposition from the Democrats. This fight will not be quick and it will not be easy. That is why it is essential that principled conservatives hold the line and actively push back against the ever-growing federal behemoth.

As Americans, there are many things we can do to bring the federal government back to its constitutional limits and pay down the debt. A good place to start would be to retire Rep. Bass.

Tuesday
Apr192011

The Tea Party's Relationship To The Republican Party 

By Nick Fortune

I think we in the Tea Party have to understand that we’re dealing with establishment Republicans who have their own agenda.  These may or may not be conservative, but certainly include those considered to be RINOS.  These establishment Republicans will work with us only to the degree that it’s in their best interest. 

It was these same establishment Republicans who initially resented, denounced, and resisted the Tea-Party movement.  If you recall, it was Michael Steele, National Chairman of the Republican party, and Karl Rove in the hierarchy of the Republican party who both criticized Sarah Palin (who at that time was the most popular Republican) for stepping down as governor of Alaska.  They both violated Ronald Reagan’s 11th commandment; “do not speak ill of another Republican.” 

I think that the Republican party is coming to realize that without the Tea-Party people, they are but an empty shell.  It’s in our interest to try to work with them as best we can making them aware that our loyalty is to conservative/libertarian issues and candidates, and we need to understand that the Republican party is just a means to an end.  We might do well to play one party against the other; (the Republicans vs. The Democrats), giving both the opportunity to obtain our support.  Whichever party brings forth the best candidate, by our standard, is the one we will back.  If neither brings forth a suitable candidate, by our standard, then we should consider bringing forth our own candidate to primary against their candidates.  I don’t think it wise to compete as a third party candidate.

The “big tent” concept is meant to include, or not exclude RINOS.

Do not be misled in thinking that the Republican party is interested in bringing forth the best quality candidate.  From my experience, their  first priorities are 1 –Can they win?  2 –How much money can they raise?  And THEN they might consider how good the candidate is regarding the public’s interest.

We should not alienate the Republican party, but neither should we conform to or be absorbed by the party; we must remain a separate entity, trying to work both within and without the party.

Nick F

 

Saturday
Nov062010

Broken Political Promises & Corruption

In 2006, a majority of voters - angry, disgusted and alarmed with our country’s direction under Republican control - swept Democrats to majorities in Congress. They were then lulled into accepting the Party’s self-serving rhetoric that if only voters delivered Democrats a filibuster-proof Senate and the presidency in 2008, they would be able to restore sanity and the rule of law to our nation.

Unfortunately, this turned out to be an intentional and cynical lie in the spirit of Lucy’s duping the ever gullible Charlie Brown into hoping that just this once she might not laughingly yank the football away at the last second, leaving him flat on his back in the dust (again).

Americans were eager to dismantle the Bush/Cheney policies, beginning from when the bogus “War on Terror” was launched and used as the pretext for fomenting mass fear and hysteria, followed by imperial “wars of choice”, ethnic and religious hatred, ideological industry-beholden flacks in charge of (not) policing Wall Street and big business, unrestricted surveillance, torture, ruinous deficits, pervasive cronyism, suspension of Constitutionally-guaranteed civil liberties, and unpunished blatant law-breaking by the President and his highest retainers.

Citizens should always be wary when politicians propose the canard called a “The War on _____”.  It’s intentionally designed as an unwinnable, endless campaign declared against an intangible foe waged for the purposes of the curtailment of liberty and the long-term transfer of truckloads of taxpayer money to crony corporations and special interests (e.g., “The War on Poverty”, “The War on Terror”, “The War on Drugs” – what’s next, “The War on Hurricanes?”).

Many of their hard-working supporters and activists began to suspect the true motives of the newly-elected Democratic majority in Washington and that the “fix was in” when one of Nancy Pelosi’s first acts as Speaker was to famously declare, “Impeachment is off the table”.  As it turned out, their suspicion was justified.

When the Democrats took majority control of Congress in 2006, having committed to extricating us from our  ”wars of choice”, America was engaged in (only) two such conflicts:  Iraq and Afghanistan.  Now four years later, our nation is deep into five “wars of choice”:  Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen, and agitating for a sixth in Iran.

Betraying a core campaign pledge, and building upon the foundation of unconstitutional powers unlawfully claimed by his predecessor, our Democratic President has seized further sweeping and unprecedented dictatorial powers to imprison indefinitely, render overseas, torture, try via kangaroo court, deny access to legal counsel, and/or kill by decree any person anywhere in the world including American citizens without charges or recourse.  A vast, secret shadowy government has grown its tentacles exponentially on this Nobel Peace Prize winner’s watch. Whistle-blowers who’ve alerted us to waste, incompetence, wrong-doing and corruption are prosecuted; high-crimes and treason by political elites and Wall Street are dismissed with the patronizing slogan: “We must look forward, not backward”.

What have the Democrats in Washington produced since their 2008 victory? More war, more police state, more debt; a health insurance bill that transfers upwards of $1 trillion over ten years to the self-serving health insurance industry in exchange for a few overpriced benefits that can be capriciously revoked without substantive penalty, and which forces another thirty million of us to buy their loophole-ridden and often worse-than-useless products;  a financial industry regulatory bill that’s mostly smoke and mirrors with its effective enforcement provisions hollowed out or deleted in backroom deals; and an undersized train wreck of an economic stimulus bill, riddled with one-time pork, ineffectual tax cuts and short-term local government subsidies.

Even when Washington Democrats did pass something worthwhile - student loan reform - in a craven, cowardly and shameful act of betrayal, they bundled it with an ultimately proven unconstitutional death warrant for ACORN, as the Democrats caved (again) to right-wing propaganda and lies.

As has been the case on numerous occasions over the last four years, it is also neither leadership nor courage for Democrats in particular or any elected officials in general to disingenuously claim credit for token voting in opposition to legislation, e.g., war funding or TARP, only after their leadership had already secured enough votes for passage.

Of course Washington Republicans, both before and after 2008, have been at least as destructive and dangerous to our Republic and as previously noted, perhaps even more so.  Lest we forget that it was still during Bush/Cheney’s reign in the fall of 2008 – not Obama’s – and enthusiastically supported by Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch Mc Connell, Republican House Minority Leader John Boehner and the majority of the Republican caucus in both Houses that TARP and the Federal Reserve transferred upwards of $27 trillion to Wall Street and “took over” several big banks, investment houses and insurance companies, enriching the crooks and leaving the rest of us to rot.

Experience clearly shows that campaign rhetoric to the contrary, neither Party intends to abandon their lust for empire, addiction to unrestrained military spending, growth of the security state, pork projects and vote-buying, pandering to special interests, destruction of individual liberty, cronyism, Wall Street and corporate favoritism and largesse, lawlessness and two-tiered justice, deficit spending, secrecy and executive power.

In Roman times, emperors held the support of the common people via what was referred to as “bread and circuses”.  Perhaps the only real difference between the major Parties may be that the Democrats distribute the “bread” and the Republicans the “circuses”.  Pick your poison.

Present-day euphoric Republican voters are cautioned to take note that Lucy’s sport knows no favorites among the gullible.

Perhaps it's time to cast off the unconstitutional and hopelessly corrupt stranglehold this broken "two-party system" has on our Republic. A good start might be to end automatic ballot access for the major parties - let everyone qualify each election cycle on a level playing field.

Nathaniel Gurien

Kearsarge´╗┐

Thursday
May272010

Living Up to Freedom

Second in a series of Articles that appeared in the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript.

By John M. Lord, Jr.

 

Our first column discussed America’s founding value, freedom, and the top Republican priority of defending it from external threats through a strong national defense. This week we will touch on the obligations incumbent on free citizens and the need to guard our freedoms from inadvertently undermining them ourselves.

The privilege of personal freedom is inextricably linked to the duty of personal responsibility. Just as each of us is free to choose what is best for us and our families, so too each of us must accept and live up to the responsibilities that go with that privilege. This means educating ourselves, supporting ourselves, and living up to our private and civic obligations. In short, we must strive to carry our own weight and avoid burdening others.

Given our freedom of choice, we must also be willing to live with the outcomes of our decisions. At one time or another, all of us have made poor choices that we wish could be undone; but our responsibility as adults and citizens is to bear the result, learn from our experience and try to avoid making the same mistake again.

Sometimes, this necessary link between freedom and responsibility seriously tests our human sympathies. For example, when through impulse or ignorance a child or a friend makes a bad choice, we are tempted to help relieve them of the consequences; but is doing so really a kindness or does it instead lead to a reliance on others to come to the rescue?

All this would be simply an interesting philosophical debate except that the obligations of individual responsibility and the natural, though sometimes inadvisable desire to help others, become manifest in the role of government. Few would argue against laws to protect individuals from harm by others, but what of laws designed to protect people from themselves or from the sometimes harsh realities of life?

Over the last 80 years our federal government has grown increasingly paternalistic, assuming responsibilities that were once distinctly left to the individual. While well meaning, this creeping government “benevolence” has had unintended consequences, including eroding personal liberty and fostering a culture of dependence in segments of our society. Continuation of this trend puts America’s unique brand of freedom at risk. As former Republican Senator Barry Goldwater put it, “A government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take away everything you have.”

Republicans have long resisted the growth of government social programs that usurp personal freedom and absolve people of their responsibilities. But far from being negatively motivated, the Republican belief in small government is an affirmation that every individual has the intelligence, the ability and the duty to act for themselves, and that in doing so we will collectively thrive as a nation. At this point in our history, restoring the primacy of the people relative to government is more important than ever. We say, let freedom ring.