Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell signs on to Rand Paul 2016

Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell signaled his support for Rand Paul’s potential 2016 presidential campaign in a wide-ranging interview with the Lexington Herald-Reader after Tuesday night’s Republican sweep of key Senate races and McConnell’s own stunning defeat of his Democratic challenger.

From the interview:

McConnell also is intrigued by Paul’s plans for 2016, when Kentucky’s junior senator faces re-election to his Senate seat while potentially running for president.

It’s a safe bet that Paul won’t be the only member of McConnell’s GOP caucus who considers trying for a move to the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue.

Does that require a tricky balance?

“(It’s) not tricky at all,” McConnell said. “Obviously, I’m a big supporter of Rand Paul. We’ve developed a very tight relationship, and I’m for him.”

For president?

“Whatever he decides to do,” McConnell said. “I don’t think he’s made a final decision on that. But he’ll be able to count on me.”

Paul endorsed McConnell in early 2013, months before McConnell’s tea party-backed primary challenger — Matt Bevin — materialized. McConnell trounced Bevin in the May primary.by an almost 2-to-1 margin.

Optimism and Gridlock in the Senate: YOU SHALL NOT PASS

Shall Not Pass

A criticism of conservatives in the last several election cycles — this past Tuesday being a momentous exception — is that they weren’t interested enough in watching the movements and emerging talking points of the “other side.” They were beaten time and again because they were constantly reacting and playing defense, instead of observing their opponent’s gameplan and coming up with some anticipatory plays of their own.

Tuesday may represent a shift in that attitude. However, there’s only so much time to relax before figuring out where the Progressives want to go next. And they’re already revealing it. Gridlock, people. And it’ll be the Republicans fault. I saw it on Twitter yesterday, from a Progressive who has an uncanny ability to distill the marching orders and throw them out there first: to paraphrase, he said the more things change, the more they stay the same. It’s on the Republicans to govern now and he expects more gridlock.

You got that? Republicans will be governing and so the gridlock will be theirs.

Noah Rothman at Hotair has an excellent piece deconstructing — and offering some advice about — this not-exactly-new Democrat meme, which Jonathan Chait, as is his way, has introduced to the cresftfallen kids who are wondering just what the hell happened Tuesday:

This is a truly impressive bit of spiral thinking. During the previous two years, gridlock was bad. For the next two years, it’s bad that the GOP still wants to create gridlock to avoid taking responsibility for governing, but we need to let them continue gridlock to avoid having people get excited about them. Oh… and we just need to wait for Hillary.

Congress just got a lot more diverse, and you can thank Republicans

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Diversity is the Democrat Party’s raison d’être. They exist solely as a coalition of smaller demographic and issue groups. So it’s pretty big news when Republicans make big strides among minority voters or elect women and minorities to high office. In the historic GOP wave that swept the country Tuesday, that’s exactly what happened. And it’s about time.

Among the eight (!) new Republicans joining the US Senate next year will be the first woman elected from Iowa, Joni Ernst, and the first black Senator elected in the South since post-Civil War Reconstruction, Tim Scott of South Carolina. Scott was previously appointed by SC governor Nikki Haley (who is herself Indian-American) to fill the seat vacated last year by the retiring Jim DeMint. It’s quite something that the very state that started the Civil War has elected the first black man from the former Confederate states since their electoral processes returned to normal.

Also worth noting, though it’s not quite the same kind of diversity, is that Tom Cotton, the new US Senator from Arkansas, is the first Iraq War veteran elected to the chamber. He will certainly add a new perspective to discussions of foreign policy and military issues (though this site is likely to disagree on them).

Conservatives must push the new Republican-controlled Congress to Audit the Fed

Audit the Fed

Will an “Audit the Fed” bill pass the Senate next year when Republicans are in the majority?

in 2010 and 2012, this legislation, which would open the books of the U.S. private central bank, passed the House of Representatives handily, but died in the Senate.

Americans deserve to know what the Federal Reserve is doing to the money supply, as it directly affects how much each dollar in our pockets are worth. Perhaps last week’s actions by the Fed will result in Americans feeling a small pinch of what is to come as a result of repeated quantitative easing (QE), a smart-sounding but barely understandable term.

The Fed decided to discontinue its program to buy $85 billion in U.S. Treasury and mortgage bonds per month from other big banks in order to increase the U.S. money supply. This is based on the theory that buying bonds will spur economic growth, increase lending, and encourage riskier investments. But where does the Federal Reserve get the money to buy these bonds? They print the money (digitally).

While it is news that the Fed is going to stop purchasing bonds for now, as with QEs in the past, the real story is in the unbelievably huge amount of holdings the Fed have built up. $85 billion here, $85 billion there, and soon we’re talking about real money. Nearly $4.5 TRILLION, in fact.

How Washington Profits by Pillaging America

Culture of Washington

I’ve been banging the drum for years about Washington being a racket for the benefit of politicians, cronyists, bureaucrats, contractors, lobbyists, interest groups, and other insiders.

I’ve written about horrific examples of bloated spending that line the pockets of the well connected.

I’ve shared disgusting examples of Democrat sleaze and Republican sleaze.

I’ve exposed rampant corruption with insiders getting rich at our expense.

I’ve pontificated about fat-cat bureaucrats who get paid more and do less.

But I’ve never figured out an effective way of combining all these issues.

So I’m very happy that Scott Beyer of the American Enterprise Institute combines these themes in a very good article about our self-serving political class.

Here’s some of what he wrote.

It’s Election Day. Polls are open. You can make a difference.

Election Day 2014

The polls are open on the East Coast and will soon be open across the nation, as voters likely decide to send even more Republicans to the House and give Mitch McConnell the Republican majority he needs to pass the jobs bills that have languished on Harry Reid’s desk since Republicans took the House in 2011.

Real Clear Politics gives Republicans a baseline 226 seats in the House to the Democrats’ 179 seat baseline with 30 “toss up” races. Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball predicts Republicans win 243 seats in the House, a net gain of nine seats.

In the Senate, Sabato believes Republicans will net eight seats, taking a 53-47 majority. Sabato predicts Louisiana and Georgia’s run-off will result in Republican victories in December and January, respectively, and that Republican Pat Roberts will hold on against Independent Greg Orman in Kansas.

But if you think Washington will maintain its track record of gridlock (and it probably with with Obama still in the White House), then you should turn your focus to gubernatorial and state legislative races.

Establishment GOP will win* on Election Day, and it’s up to grassroots conservatives to hold them accountable

Senate Republican Leadership

All most signs point to Republicans taking the majority in the U.S. Senate tomorrow and sending Harry Reid and the Democrats “into the wilderness” for at least two years. For conservatives, tomorrow’s 74.4%-sure Republican victory will prove to be a double-edged sword.

This is a hard pill to swallow: Conservatives lost more than a few key primary battles against Establishment-back Republicans this cycle. It’s important to admit it — because, from there, conservatives can do two things:

A Time for Choosing: American voters must heed Reagan’s words and elect pro-growth politicians

Ronald Reagan Time for Choosing

On October 27, 1964, a well-known Hollywood actor delivered a speech that electrified and forever changed the nation.

The words within the speech coined the term “fiscal responsibility” and launched one of the most successful political debuts in the history of American politics by propelling the career of one of the country’s most beloved and celebrated statesman – Ronald Reagan.

Sixteen years after his “A Time for Choosing” speech, Reagan would himself stand in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol while outlining the modern conservative vision of a responsible and transparent government motivated by the wants and needs of the very people who elected him – the taxpayers.

Two short years into his presidency, Reagan recruited late industrialist J. Peter Grace to carry out his vision, known as the Grace Commission, in which he directed 161 corporate executives and community leaders to “be bold and work like tireless bloodhounds to root out government inefficiency and waste of tax dollars.”

As November 4, 2014 marks the 34th year since The Gipper’s presidential election, taxpayers are again faced with the choice to either return to the institutionalized belief of fiscal responsibility, or continue trudging through a dismal economic environment (thanks in large part to a government that mismanages their money through a bloated and incorrigible federal bureaucracy.)

In the Wilderness: If GOP takes Senate majority, many Dems will face minority “culture shock”

Harry Reid's Minority

If tomorrow’s election results pan out the way most political prognosticators predict, a majority of Democrats will be in the minority for the first time in their Senate careers, according to The Hill.

From their write-up:

Only 17 Democrats who could serve in the next Senate were in office eight years ago, the last time the GOP held the levers of power.

With Republicans favored on Election Day, the new class of Democrats might be in for a rude awakening come January, when the perks of the majority could be stripped away.

“It will be a shock for Democrats to move into the minority,” said Jim Manley, a former spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

The indignities of serving under the opposing party are legion.

The first blow is the loss of committee chairmanships, which senators use to draft legislation, conduct oversight and draw attention to pet causes.

Democrats would be demoted to the ranking members of committees and forced to downsize by letting go of staffers who aren’t wanted on the new majority’s payroll.

Perhaps worst of all, some Democrats would have to pack up their things as Republicans dole out the spoils of office space.

This is part of the Washington back-and-forth. Ousted Senate Democrats’ soon-to-be-former staffers will either head back to their home states or head to the nearest left-wing interest group or think tank, while Republican staffers — in the wilderness since 2006 — will leave their posts at think tanks and other organizations to head to the Hill.

Libertarianism: A Dual Alliance Against Statism

Statism Religion

About three religions I write: Monotheism, Statism, and Non-belief. I would include polytheism to this list, but there are very few of them left, at least in Western Civilization.

Libertarians can be broadly divided into two of these groups. Monotheists and non-believers. Not all monotheists are libertarians. But all true non-believers are libertarians. Within the category of non-believers are atheists and agnostics, two groups that seem significantly different to me, but share a skepticism about anyone’s knowledge of divinity.

Both monotheistic libertarians and non-believers share a trait: They hate the state. They hate the state more than they hate each other, which is saying something. They hate the state more than each other, because both recognize that the state is triumphant, and that statism (the sinister democratic strain) is the religion that has conquered the world. Both monotheist libertarians and non-believers are heretics living in a land I would call statiandum. As heretics, they feel uneasy. This is appropriate, for history is clear: the dominant religion will persecute heretics.

Both monotheists and non-believers want their religion to win. This is the nature of a religious belief. It calls for total commitment. Both groups aspire to conquer the world, just as statism has. Don’t believe anybody who says they are for “competition” in religion. That’s the cunning of the underdog who wants your sympathy. Or, it is the falsehood of the favorite, who pretends he has no stake in the contest. Make no mistake, every religious person hopes for a religious theocracy. They just want it to be their kind of theocracy.

 


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