Big Government Republican

Another conservative plea to libertarians falls flat

Mitt Romney

In what is becoming its very own genre of blog post, another conservative voice has come out with a plea for libertarians to support Mitt Romney.  To those of us who were not born last week, this all seems quite humorous as most of the time libertarians are treated as irrelevant.  In this election, though, things have gotten tight and our votes count as much as those of the most hardcore Republicans.

As I wrote here two weeks ago, Republicans have a long way to go before they can make a truly credible case to libertarians.  For one thing, they need to understand that most libertarians do not see themselves in the same way as conservatives and liberals.  For the most part, both of these groups line up pretty well with a major party.  Sure, conservatives will say they want the GOP to be more right-leaning, and liberals will say they want the Democrat Party to veer more progressive, but they are both going to vote for their respective parties in the end.  Libertarians, though, mesh with elements of both parties - and find plenty to dislike about both as well.

It’s clear to me that the writer of the post, Mr. Brady Cremeens, didn’t read that post, and doesn’t understand the first thing about libertarians.  His entire piece is premised upon the idea that libertarians are just another element of the Right that simply needs to be brought back into the fold.  In Cremeens’ world, we really are just “conservatives who smoke pot” as the saying goes.  With his initial premise being flawed, then, it does not bode well for the rest of what he says.  If he does not understand where libertarians are coming from, how can he possibly make a convincing case?

Big government Peter King says he’s “running for president”

Peter King

Rep. Peter King (R-NY), who is among the biggest war hawks in Washington, recently told a New Hampshire radio station that he’s running for president, becoming the first Republican to announce for 2016:

In a radio interview this week, the Republican lawmaker told a New Hampshire station that he was in the state “because right now I’m running for president,” according to The New York Daily News.

The visit was King’s second of four trips to the traditional home of the nation’s first presidential primary.

The announcement makes King the first Republican to officially declare their intentions to run for president in 2016.
King is serving his 11th term in the house. Over the years he has been a vocal member of his party at times, especially on foreign policy issues.

King has been very critical of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and others in the Republican Party who have expressed a cautious approach to foreign policy, frequently labeling them as ”isolationists,” which is intended to be a pejorative; though the word has lost its meaning because it has become so overused.

California conservatives promise bloody primary for Leftist Republican

Doug Ose

Republicans in California will have a shot next year to defeat Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA), who is considered to be one of the most vulnerable Democrats in the House. But there is very strong disagreement whether or not a former Republican Congressman should run.

Former Rep. Doug Ose, who served in Congress from 1999 to 2005, sees an opening to return to Washington and is apparently being courted by some in state’s political establishment to run in the CA-07.

Ose, who lost a congressional primary bid in 2008, is telling the media that he isn’t happy with the state of affairs in Washington and around the country. But there are some who believe that Ose wouldn’t do much to help fix Washington based on his past support of big government policies.

A group of California-based Tea Party and conservative activists sent a letter to Ose on Monday, warning him that he can expect active opposition to his candidacy should he decide to run.

“It has come to our attention that you are considering running for Congress in California’s 7th Congressional District. We have also heard that you do not want to see a ‘bloody primary’ for the Republican nomination,” wrote the activists. “We agree. That’s why we are writing today to encourage you not to run in CA-07.”

Big-spending Republicans upset with fiscal conservatives for killing Farm Bill

Last week, the House of Representatives defeated the Farm Bill, an atrocious measure that would have spent $940 billion over the next five years. While Republican leaders have been quick to blame Democrats, some in the caucus are expressing their frustration behind the scenes at fiscal conservatives who help killed the measure, according to Politico (emphasis mine):

Almost a week after Republicans failed to pass the nearly $1 trillion, five-year agricultural package through the House, Speaker John Boehner and other GOP leaders are feeling the heat from frustrated lawmakers sick of screw-ups.

Republican Reps. Kristi Noem of South Dakota and Kevin Cramer of North Dakota separately stood up at a GOP meeting Wednesday and confronted their leadership about its bumbling legislative strategy and inability to figure out a way forward on the massive legislation, according to multiple sources at the meeting.

Noem, who once served in Republican leadership, took aim squarely at Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.). She reminded him that he controls the House floor, and she drilled Cantor hard on his precise plans to mop up the mess, several Republicans who attended the meeting said. Cantor wasn’t able to outline a plan that satisfied Noem, and he blamed Democrats for the bill’s defeat.

Big Government Republicans Love Lindsey Graham

In response to our post yesterday about FreedomWorks targeting Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), we just received this e-mail:

Are you guys nuts????  We should have 55 Rep Senators right now and you are spending money going after our SC senator.  Start going after the Dems and leave the Rep senators alone.  Get some good candidates in Iowa, Montana, Georgia and other states we can win.  How in the world can you spend 5 cents going after Graham when we cant even get candidates in these states we can win.  The focus should be on a majority senate.

You guys have gone off the rails.  You keep it up and your boy Obama will have his 60 senators and god help us.  Me and a lot of other people are going to get very vocal about this.  Stay the hell out of SC and leave our Senator alone.

The problem with the Republican Party are politicians like Lindsey Graham. They are why we can’t have nice things. Now, you may be fine with big government Republicans who have contributed substantially towards the debt explosion over the last two administrations. But Lindsey Graham isn’t just South Carolina’s problem. Every single time he votes for more spending and more government involvement in our lives, as he’s done so many times before; he becomes the rest of the country’s problem.

FreedomWorks Fires a Warning Shot at Lindsey Graham

Just a few weeks ago, it looked like Mark Sanford was headed to defeat in South Carolina’s First Congressional District. He had made a notable misstep, which caused the National Republican Campaign Committee to pull resources from the race. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and FreedomWorks, a grassroots-driven organization, stepped into fill the void, with the former providing vocal support and the latter activists to educate voters in the district.

Sanford wound up defeating his Democratic opponent by a healthy margin, providing Paul, who is thought to be candidate for the GOP’s presidential nomination in 2016, and FreedomWorks with notch on their belt against the Republican political establishment.

Fresh off this victory, FreedomWorks has now set its sights on another South Carolina race that could shake-up the Republican Party.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has long been a thorn in the side of fiscal conservatives. He was once thought to be untouchable, but recent polls have showed his numbers falling among Republicans.

Electable fiscal conservative needed in West Virginia

Shelley Moore Capito

Republicans got a gift on Friday when Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), who has been in Washington since 1985, announced that he would not seek another term in 2014:

Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, the five-term Democrat from West Virginia, opening up a potential seat for Republicans to grab in the next round of Congressional contests.

“As I approach 50 years of public service in West Virginia, I’ve decided that 2014 will be the right moment for me to find new ways to fight for the causes I believe in and to spend more time with my incredible family,” Rockefeller said in a statement.

“Championing those most in need has been my life’s calling, and I will never stop fighting to make a difference for the people who mean so much to me,” he continued.

First elected in 1984, Rockefeller is the chairman of the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and also holds a seat on the select intelligence, taxation, and veterans’ affairs panels.

Republicans haven’t had a lot of luck in federal elections West Virginia, presidential races notwithstanding. Democrats have held both of the Senate seats since 1959, though Republican candidates haven’t been that great. While Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), who has already declared her candidacy, hopes to turn the tide, she may face stiff primary competition and opposition from grassroots organizations.

For example, the Club for Growth slammed Capito in November after she announced her candidacy, noting that she “has a long record of support of bailouts, pork, and bigger government.”

Rick Santorum knocks Goldwater view of limited government

We’ve constantly pointed out that Rick Santorum isn’t a friend to Tea Party voters and advocates of limited government. Unfortunately, the dislike for Mitt Romney has led many conservatives to vote for the former Pennsylvania Senator.

Santorum’s record doesn’t quite stand up to scrutiny. As we’ve noted before, he’s voted to expand entitlements, backed earmarks, and cast votes for bloated budgets. Despite this, he still claims to be a fiscal conservative and worthy of Tea Party support. If you’re not going to believe those of us that has been calling Santorum out for what he really is, another big government Republican, just listen to him in his own words.

In an interview in 2008, Santorum said, “Republicans, to our credit, have morphed away form the Goldwater idea that government just needs to be small”:

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