Elections

2014: Obama’s Song of Himself

Obama Singing

Politically speaking, 2015 could shape up to be a very dramatic year, what with it being just a year away from the presidential election that, to my mind, will determine if our country has survived a fairly concerted effort to turn toward European Socialism. As the year turns, it’s worthwhile to look backward for a minute and assess the victories and wins versus the moments when things didn’t exactly fall into place.

The White House certainly agrees, and so has produced a slideshow highlighting this administration’s “accomplishments”. Oh do give it a look. It’s a glorious little vanity project that could make you laugh if you get past the annoying self love and glaring word garbage that makes each slide not quite a lie as much as a statement lacking context. As Market Watch notes:

To hear the White House tell it, the November elections never happened and 2014 was a super-duper year for President Obama.

Of course the Market Watch writer seems bitter than Obama is taking credit for all these great wins and yet those clever conservatives still managed to win a whole lot in the midterms. Harrumph. If you’re so great President Obama — he seems to say — why are we subjected to their new reign of terror?

Matthew Hurtt, writing here at UL, examines some of the reasons Obama’s approval rating has fallen low enough to hand control of Congress back to the right.

Should a libertarian support voter ID laws?

Since 2003 a number of states have passed laws requiring some sort of ID to be shown when a person goes to vote.  Proponents of the laws present them as a way to stamp out voter fraud; opponents decry the laws as a way to prevent minorities or the poor from voting, as they are most likely to not have acceptable ID.  The battles have waged not only in legislatures but in courthouses as well.  Wisconsin’s law was just struck down by a judge and Texas’ law is being challenged by the DOJ.

For a libertarian, it seems like both sides of the argument have been a little disingenuous.  Voter fraud has yet to be shown to be anywhere near as widespread as Republicans would like us to think, though this could be because it has heretofore gone undetected.  And showing a form of basic ID, often provided at no cost to the voter, is a very low bar and one that is gladly accepted when doing numerous other activities - even buying alcohol or getting into a bar.

So we are left to sit outside and try to figure out which side to take.  On one hand, for those libertarians who believe in voting, the integrity of elections is very important.  We need to ensure that elections accurately represent the will of voters.  On the other hand, though, it is important that no one is prevented from voting for illegitimate reasons.  If the laws are an underhanded attempt to disenfranchise certain groups, as opponents say, they are problematic.

Oh Jeez, Not This Again

Just when you thought he and his toupee were gone:

Donald Trump’s decision to drop out of the 2012 presidential race may be as ephemeral as NFL quarterback Brett Favre’s decision to throw in the towel in 2008.

Like Mr. Favre, who was back on the gridiron playing for a different team just months after his teary farewell from football three years ago, Mr. Trump also appears to be considering suiting up to get back in the game – only this time as an independent.

“It was not an easy decision for me [to drop out of the Republican primary race in May], but I think that it will be an easy decision [to return to the campaign] if the Republicans choose the wrong candidate and if the economy is bad. I think it will be a really easy decision for me to make,” Trump told the Monitor in an interview in Panama City, shortly after inaugurating the Trump Ocean Club, the first Trump hotel and tower outside the United States.

If “The Donald” feels the time is right to get back in the race, look for him to make the announcement on the next season of his reality TV show The Apprentice – his primetime soapbox.

It’s Time For An Adult Conversation

By February 2011, now just over four months away, America will know whether the Republican Party that they have returned to power in the House, along with the increased number in the Senate, truly are a new breed of Republicans (or rather, a return to the traditional Republicans of the past…true limited government, low tax conservatives), or whether we have the same mess as before in new packaging.

To be sure, Republicans are unlikely to accomplish much in 2011 and 2012, at least from an administrative standpoint. Even if they regain a majority in the House (very likely) and Senate (an outside possibility requiring all the stars to align), they are still faced with an opposition president wielding veto power, a president who has vowed that there will be “hand-to-hand combat in Washington” if Republicans win. Despite his lofty rhetoric of ushering in an era of true bipartisanship, Obama’s latest comments reveal what most of us already knew. Namely, that “bipartisanship” to Democrats means Republicans must vote for everything that the Democrat majority passes or be labeled as “obstructionist”.

This is the same president who, shortly after taking office in January 2009, and when facing Republican opposition to the stimulus package, repeatedly reminded Republicans that he’d won the election. Therefore, the implication being, America has accepted his goals and his agenda and there will be no compromises. The stimulus package was rammed through with almost no Republican support (a good thing, because now Democrats have to take full responsibility for its failure), as was ObamaCare (passed with NO Republican support, also a good thing).

Death Knell: Tea Party/Freedom Candidates Running on Pure Unfetterd Principle

Yesterday, Ron Paul purist and anti-war Republican Adam Kokesh lost 29% to 71% to an “establishment” Republican despite outspending his opponent at least 2 to 1.

There is a big lesson here for all Tea Party and “Ron Paul” Republicans: No Republican campaign can win by trying to woo Democrats!

Banking on Democrats voting for you is suicide.

White writing, I’ve received an email from Adams campaign:

The relative numbers do not fully reflect the energy and commitment of those who cast a vote for us.  We were an unconventional campaign running against a conventional candidate.  The automatic reaction of old-fashioned party-line voters was to vote for our opponent.  Every single vote for us was an informed decision and an act of courage by the voter.

I’d like to congratulate the Kokesh campaign on getting out the courageous and well-informed. (He’s to be respected and commended for donating a year of his life to further his ideas - this is something not many people have the gumption for. )

Quite simply, you can’t win by trying to educate voters, you have to find common ground and connect with a base.

Years of tradition and repetition will not be undone by your crusade or principle. In a PRIMARY, working Democrats will have no effect on your campaign (duh?). Voters simply will not cross party lines to vote for your message; the best you can hope to do is drive down voter turnout by appealing to Democrats on issues.

If you are running for the Republican nomination, do not run from Republicans - embrace them, embrace the party, and find common ground. This may not be a popular sentiment on UnitedLiberty.org, but it is the truth - and it is effective.

This Is Not The Time For Revolution

Since Obamacare was passed, tensions in this country have been running high. Congressmen, especially those who voted for the bill, have been targeted with vandalism and death threats. In turn, many radicals on the left have threatened conservative personalities, issuing their own death threats to Republican congressmen, and used the opportunity to condemn all Obama opponents as racists and fascists among other things. Honestly, we in the opposition have not condemned this violence enough and instead we have sought to change the focus towards things said by the left. In addition, our continued tolerance of such lunatics like Birthers and 9/11 Truthers lends credience to the smears of the left.

For those of you out there who think this is the time for revolution, please consider the following:

1) All political and legal options have not been exhausted. There are Congressional elections in November 2010 and Presidential elections in November 2012. Use this anger and energy to donate money and support candidates who support liberty and who will fix/repeal Obamacare. In addition, many states have filed lawsuits challenging Obamacare and those lawsuits need time to work their way through the courts.

2) The right to free speech and to petition grievances is still in effect. Obamacare opponents can still express their opposition views to the public. Such views are common place on talk radio, the Internet, the newspapers, and as a matter all over the place. Obamacare opponents are not being thrown in jail or being silenced by the state.

3) Obama and the Democrats did win the past two elections and have a mandate. Obama’s election victory in 2008 and the Democratic control of Congress by definition gives them the mandate to pass whatever legislation they want, as long as it is upheld as legal. That mandate can only be revoked by their electoral defeat in 2010 and 2012.

Fighting for Liberty: Summer months give liberty activists their first taste of campaign life

Justin Amash Campaign

Several weeks ago, UL posted about the importance of grassroots conservatives having the necessary political training to combat the well-funded political Establishment. At the time, this author wrote:

[The Leadership Institute] hosts more than 40 types of trainings at their headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, and across the nation. Trainings range from basic grassroots activism to their four-day Campaign Manager School, which Brat’s campaign manager took last summer.

But LI isn’t the only right-of-center organization that trains conservative activists. American Majority is another organization that hosts trainings around the country. FreedomWorks also hosts activist summits at their headquarters in Washington, D.C. Americans for Prosperity routinely organizes for conservative causes.

It’s important to note that political technology — the nuts and bolts of winning elections — is totally nonpartisan. Tactics that work for Democrats also work for Republicans. So you shouldn’t limit yourself to just taking trainings hosted by conservative organizations.

It’s important to be equipped with the right tools to fight for liberty, but how do you become involved once you’ve taken a training? What’s the next step? For many, the next opportunity to become involved is to volunteer on a campaign.

Campaign finance transparency for thee but not for me, says the Left

One member of Democracy Alliance (DA), a group of wealthy liberals founded in 2005 who bankroll left-wing causes, left behind a confidential list of their new members at their meeting at the Ritz Carlton in downtown Chicago last week. As Lachlan Markay writes at the Washington Free Beacon, “The Democracy Alliance takes pains to ensure that its work disbursing millions of dollars to top left-wing organizations remains secretive and free from public scrutiny.”

Security was tight and attempts to interview attendees were met with force, according to an earlier report by the Free Beacon.

DA requires “partners” to pay $30,000 annually and funnel $200,000 into DA’s list of left-wing foundations and causes. The list of new partners from 2013 and 2014 include Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers; Noel Beasley, President of Workers United; and Philip Munger, son of Berkshire Hathaway vice chairman Charles Munger, and others, according to the Free Beacon’s report.

Delaying Keystone XL decision should hurt Democrats

When in doubt, punt. At least that’s been the basic strategy of the Obama Administration lately. Better to put off unpopular decisions until after the mid-term elections, to hopefully reduce the number of losses to Republicans, right?

In the case of Keystone XL, kicking the can down the road might not have the desired result. No matter how much DNC chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz might want to wish it otherwise, the fact is that suggesting Obama’s non-decision on the pipeline isn’t a political is laughable. The only people that are buying that line are already buying every other line out of this administration. It’s not reaching the people that are starting to question the competence of Democrats in office.

So, what does that mean when it comes to the mid-terms? The only people that should be remotely pleased with the decision to not decide are the environmentalists. Democrats in peril should be swearing at Obama. They’re smart enough to realize that they are in for a very rough ride in November - you know you are in trouble when even the unions are against you.

NY Times backs IRS’s anti-political speech rules

The New York Times’ editorial board — packed with purported journalists who make their living under the protections of the First Amendment — is strongly backing the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service’s proposed rules that would limit nonprofit groups from engaging in debates over public policy:

The problem of secret money began in 2010, with the loosening of rules that was prompted in part by the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. Political operatives like Karl Rove realized that “social welfare” groups were allowed by the tax code to accept unlimited donations that did not have to be disclosed. They could then use that money to run political attack ads. Though the tax code says the groups, known as 501(c)(4)s, could not be engaged primarily in political activity and still keep their tax exemption, that was easy enough to get around by claiming the ads had some kind of civic purpose.

By the 2012 election, these groups were spending $300 million and were often the dominant voice in major races. The Koch brothers, in particular, got around the tax code provision by moving tens of millions among a huge number of nonprofits so that it was almost impossible to determine the purpose of each group, let alone who the donors were.


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