Ann Coulter

Sorry, Washington Republicans, but it’s absolutely acceptable to criticize candidates who want grow the federal government

Voters are often told that conservatives should not challenge Washington-backed big government Republicans, because doing so could lead to Republican defeat. Yet it often seems that Washington Republicans don’t follow their own advice. It prompts the question, when does the Washington class really view it as appropriate to criticize Republican candidates?

Mississippi is one example. Washington Republicans asked Democratic voters to support their candidate, Sen. Thad Cochran, in his primary election. This was a violation of Mississippi law, so conservative state Sen. Chris McDaniel is challenging the result.

This prompted Ann Coulter to write that Chris McDaniel was a “sore loser” whose supporters “don’t care that they’re gambling with a Republican majority in the Senate.”

This is not the first time Ann Coulter has complained about conservatives from the South or other locations around Middle America. Last October, she complained that conservatives in Minnesota had not done enough to help Sen. Norm Coleman win re-election against Sen. Al Franken, writing, “The inability to distinguish Coleman and McConnell… from Obamacare-ratifying Democrats is…insane.”

We’re all RINOs now

Dan Drezner, a columnist at Foreign Policy magazine, has a great blog post up explaining why he calls himself a “RINO,” or “Republican-In-Name-Only,” that epithet usually utilized by such sagacious and distinguished intellects as Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, and Ann Coulter. While it does lean towards foreign policy (naturally), the whole thing is a good read. Here’s the snippet I want to focus on, though, his three reasons for being a RINO:

In my case, at this point in time,  I believe that last appellation to be entirely fair and accurate.  I’m not a Democrat, and I don’t think I’ve become more liberal over time.  That said, three things have affected my political loyalties over the past few years.  First, I’ve become more uncertain about various dimensions of GOP ideology over time.  It’s simply impossible for me to look at the aftermath of the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the 2008 financial crisis and not ponder the myriad ways in which my party has made some categorical errors in judgment. So I’m a bigger fan of the politics of doubt during an era when doubt has been banished in political discourse.

Second, the GOP has undeniably shifted further to the right over the past few years, and while I’m sympathetic to some of these shifts, most of it looks like a mutated version of “cargo cult science” directed at either Ludwig Von Mises or the U.S. Constitution (which, of course, is sacred and inviolate, unless conservatives want to amend it).  Sorry, I’m not embracing outdated concepts like the gold standard or repealing the 16th Amendment.  Not happening.

Hey Ann, the War on (Some) Drugs IS a Welfare Program

Ann Coulter

According to Ann Coulter, libertarians are “pussies” for wanting to end the war on (some) drugs and for agreeing with the Left on certain social issues such as gay marriage. Coulter was a guest on Stossel at the Students for Liberty Conference.

Coulter elaborated:

We’re living in a country that is 70-percent socailist, the government takes 60 percent of your money. They are taking care of your health care, of your pensions. They’re telling you who you can hire, what the regulations will be. And you want to suck up to your little liberal friends and say, ‘Oh, but we want to legalize pot.’ You know, if you were a little more manly you would tell the liberals what your position on employment discrimination is. How about that? But it’s always ‘We want to legalize pot.’

[..]

Liberals want to destroy the family so that you will have one loyalty and that is to the government.

Boehner reports “no progress” on fiscal cliff talks

The debate over the so-called “fiscal cliff” is still the talk of the media in Washington. However, House Speaker John Boehner told reporters this morning that he couldn’t progress report on the talks with the White House because there had been, well, no progress:

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) accused the White House Friday of trying to “slow-walk” the fiscal-cliff negotiations.

Boehner said there was “no progress” in the talks just three weeks before tax hikes and spending cuts are set to kick in and expressed frustration that President Obama hasn’t made a counteroffer to the GOP’s proposal of $800 billion in new tax revenue as part of a $2.2 trillion deficit-reduction plan.

“This isn’t a progress report, because there’s no progress to report,” Boehner said in a brief press conference at the Capitol.

He said the White House had “wasted another week” by not responding to House Republicans.

Writing earlier this week at National Review, Michael Tanner explained that there really isn’t much of a difference in the plans offered by the White House and House Republicans. The only real sticking point is, since Republicans have ceded so much ground already, by how much will they raise taxes.

The White House insists that they’re not budging on increased taxes rates for higher-income earners. Boehner says that Obama, because of his unwillingness to compromise, wants to go over the fiscal cliff.

Romney touts his healthcare law during campaign stop

RomneyCare

Mitt Romney has been under fire in the last couple of days thanks to comments made by Andrea Saul, a campaign spokeswoman who cited RomneyCare to fight back against an untruthful attack ad from a pro-Obama “super PAC.” Conservatives are beside themselves over it, and understandably so given that RomneyCare was one of the reasons many of them refused get behind him during the primary.

Ann Coulter has suggested that Saul should be fired for the comment because the response was incredibly dumb. But others, like Philip Klein, note that Saul isn’t the problem, but Romney is because he “was a moderate to liberal governor of Massachusetts, and had to adopt conservative positions that he isn’t entirely comfortable with to win the Republican nomination, health care being the most prominent example.”

And while Saul is working with what she was given, Mitt Romney, who seems completely disconnected from why he struggled during the primary, cited his healthcare overhaul as part of his experience in dealing with the issue during a campaign stop yesterday:

Romney spoke Wednesday about health care in Des Moines, Iowa. One could be forgiven for thinking he sounded like a candidate who has grown increasingly reluctant to dismiss his most significant and successful public policy achievement.

“At the top of my list of programs we don’t need is one that costs $100 billion a year I’m going to get rid of and that’s Obamacare,” he said to cheers at a rally.

Cain is inconsistent and off message

The story continues to play out over the alleged instance of sexual harrassment against Herman Cain. At this point it’s not so much whether the allegation actually occured, Cain himself has confirmed it and most of the details in the original Politico story, but whether or not we’re getting a clear picture from the campaign. Over at The New American, Raven Clabough explains:

Cain’s varying assertions regarding the events have been inconsistent. He first indicated that he was unaware of the allegations, then reported that he was “vaguely familiar” with the claims, before ultimately answering specific details regarding the accusations and the financial settlements with certainty.

Also inconsistent are Cain’s statements in light of a statement made by the National Restaurant Association. When Cain first acknowledged that he at least recalled the allegations, he indicated that the restaurant association and the human resources department had conducted an investigation into allegations about his conduct in the late 1990s.

“I recused myself and allowed my general counsel and my human resource officer to deal with the situation and it was concluded after a thorough investigation that it had no basis,” claimed Cain. In contrast, the head of the association’s human resources department indicated last week during an interview with Politico that she was unfamiliar with any complaints from female employees about Cain.

Conservatives beginning to criticize Palin’s games

The question of whether or not Sarah Palin will run for the Republican nomination is weighing on the minds of many conservatives and party observers, but it looks like they’re running out of patience. Leon Wolf, who I’d echoes much over what I’ve heard from Republicans over the last few months, explains over at RedState why Sarah Palin needs to get over herself:

On May 13, 2011, rumors had been swirling around the possible impending announcement of a Presidential candidate who would shake up the entire GOP field. Recent polls had shown this candidate leading Barack Obama in head-to-head matchups, and the GOP electorate was primed for a candidate who would be seen as a palatable alternative to Mitt Romney. Operatives said to be close to the candidate began whispering that the next day, in a nationally televised appearance, the candidate would officially declare for the Presidency. At the appointed time, with national ratings soaring, Mike Huckabee announced on his FoxNews program that… he would not be running for President.

Consistency and Ann Coulter

Ann Coulter is one of those lightning rods out there.  I’ve kind of thought for a while that half of what she says, and 99% of the way she says it, was just to grab attention in the saturated arena of political commentary.  Put another way, I  believed that she says what is ultimately her position, but simply phrased in the more caustic way to make sure people see her as different than so many others out there.

However, Coulter’s latest screed is bound to earn the ire of libertarians nationwide.  In her column, she takes aim at Representative Ron Paul, though she doesn’t mention him by name for a while.  Instead, she talks about the GOP debate and then rails against the libertarian candidate.  There are only libertarians running for President, and only one was there.  That was Ron Paul.

In her column, Coulter wrote:

They lure you in with talk of small government and then immediately start babbling about drug legalization or gay marriage.

“Get the government out of it” is a good and constitutionally correct answer to many questions, but it’s not a one-size-fits-all answer to all questions.

It was a good answer, for example, when libertarian Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, was asked about government assistance to private enterprise and government involvement in the housing market.

But it’s a chicken-s**t, I-don’t-want-to-upset-my-video-store-clerk-base answer when it comes to gay marriage.

So, a consistent argument is chickensh*t?  Really?  It’s fine when you’re talking about some things, but when it’s something Coulter finds objectionable, Paul’s scared?  In fact, he’s so scared, he takes a position that the GOP faithful disagree with him on while he’s running for that party’s nomination?  What?

CPAC: Day 3

Welcome to the third, and final day of CPAC 2011. Among today’s speakers are Andrew Breitbart, David Horowitz, Rep. Connie Mack, John Bolton, Ann Coulter and Jonah Goldberg. Also, straw poll results will be announced later today.

Coulter gets it half right

I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I have some points of agreement with Ann Coulter, who in her latest column rips into neo-conservatives calling for Michael Steele’s resignation over comments he made last week:

Bill Kristol and Liz Cheney have demanded that Steele resign as head of the RNC for saying Afghanistan is now Obama’s war — and a badly thought-out one at that. (Didn’t liberals warn us that neoconservatives want permanent war?)

I thought the irreducible requirements of Republicanism were being for life, small government and a strong national defense, but I guess permanent war is on the platter now, too.

Of course, if Kristol is writing the rules for being a Republican, we’re all going to have to get on board for amnesty and a “National Greatness Project,” too – other Kristol ideas for the Republican Party. Also, John McCain. Kristol was an early backer of McCain for president — and look how great that turned out!

Inasmuch as demanding resignations is another new Republican position, here’s mine: Bill Kristol and Liz Cheney must resign immediately.

My points of disagreement with Coulter are on Iraq, which I didn’t excerpt. She thinks we’ve been “magnificently successful” there. It’s still too early to tell whether that will ultimately be the case, not to mention how to define success in a war that has gone on for seven years (with no end in sight), cost hundreds of billions of dollars, where over 4,400 soldiers have been killed and ultimately took our eyes off Afghanistan, you know, where the actual terrorists that attacked us on 9/11 were.

But at least she has the neo-conservative view of war pegged.

 


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