GOP

A winning message for the GOP: Separate big business and state

Barack Obama

Republicans are poised for another successful mid-term election, the reasons for which are voter dissatisfaction with President Barack Obama and Obamacare, his signature domestic achievement. In other words, voters are, to this point, flocking to Republicans not because of any agenda they’ve put forward, but rather because they’re the lesser of two evils on the ballot.

After 50-plus votes to repeal, delay, or defund the law, voters know that Republicans oppose Obamacare, though, the haven’t yet seen party leaders rollout out a replacement. They know that the GOP believes in limited government, fewer taxes and regulation, but leaders haven’t effectively communicated that message to the public.

There are some conservatives, however, who are pushing the party to adopt a positive reform agenda, one that advances opportunities for all Americans. One of the most notable aspects of this message is that it targets cronyism — the collusion between government and big business that rips off taxpayers through bailouts and subsidies.

Among the issues that Republicans could use to advance this message with voters are the Obamacare’s $5.5 billion bailout for health insurance companies and reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, known as “Boeing’s Bank,” which is seeking to raise its borrowing limit to $610 billion over the next four years.

Republicans can run and win with a new message: separate big business and state

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) was rebuked this weekend by grassroots conservative activists in his home district. He wasn’t just booed by the local party base, Cantor’s pick for Virginia Seventh District Republican chairman was defeated by a Tea Party-backed activist:

Just a few miles from his family home, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) felt the wrath of the tea party Saturday, when activists in his congressional district booed and heckled the second-most powerful House Republican.

They also elected one of their own to lead Virginia’s 7th Congressional District Republican Committee, turning their back on Cantor’s choice for a post viewed as crucial by both tea party and establishment wings in determining control of the fractured state GOP.

Former lieutenant governor Bill Bolling, pushed out of last year’s governor’s race by a similar party schism, said he was “extremely disappointed” by the results of the vote, in which longtime Cantor loyalist and incumbent Linwood Cobb was unseated by tea party favorite Fred Gruber.

“Clearly, there is a battle taking place for the heart and soul of the Republican Party,” Bolling said in a statement. “While the voice of every Republican should be heard, our challenge is to figure out how to be a conservative party, without allowing the most extreme voices of the day to control our party and determine its future direction.”
[…]
The tea party faction trumpeted the election results as a victory for core conservative principles of limited government, low taxes and a free-market economy.

Rand Paul: “I sense a wave election coming on”

Rand Paul

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has a good feeling about the upcoming mid-term election. Before he dropped in on the quarterly Republican National Committee meeting in Memphis, Tennessee, the Kentucky senator told Fox News that he believes a Republican wave election building due to voter dissatisfaction with Obamacare.

“I sense a wave election coming on,” Paul told America’s Newsroom host Martha McCallum. “I think the American public are unhappy about not being told the truth. We were told that we could keep our doctor, but now we’re told, you know what, if you get cancer or you need to go to MD Anderson, or you get cancer and you need to go to Sloan-Kettering, or you need to go to Harvard or deaconess, you’re told you can’t go.”

Today in Liberty: Rand Paul targets nominee over drones memo, young Millennials offer hope for GOP

— Busy week on Capitol Hill: Republicans will hold a vote on a contempt resolution against disgraced IRS official Lois Lerner as well as hold a vote to call for a special prosecutor to investigate the tax agency’s targeting of conservative groups. The lower-chamber may also vote on a measure to establish a select committee on Benghazi. The Senate, however, is likely to vote on some sort of measure to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, the only question of which is whether it’ll be binding or a nonbinding “Sense of the Senate” resolution.

Today in Liberty: Obamacare’s missing Millennials, data review urges privacy law reform

“The strongest continuous thread in America’s political tradition is skepticism about government.” — George Will

— Just 28 percent of Obamacare enrollees are Millennials: The Obama administration finished first Obamacare open enrollment period far short of its target for 18 to 34-year-olds. The administration estimated that it needed between 38 to 40 percent of enrollments to be from Millennials for the risk pools to be sustainable. It got 28 percent. “The administration is still touting 8 million sign-ups—technically 8.019 million—when the official open enrollment period of October 2013 through March 2014 is combined with stragglers who came in during the special enrollment period through April 19,” Peter Suderman explains, based on the latest figures. “It’s still the case that just 28 percent of those sign-ups were between the ages of 18 and 34, far short of the administration’s target of 39 percent. State-by-state variation remains significant, with some states seeing robust sign-up activity and others posting relatively weak numbers.”

Chamber of Commerce paying to protect Republican establishment

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

For all the election wonks out there, the upcoming elections will be an unending parade of political statistical analysis. So, this will be fun, at least for the people that enjoy wading through the numbers.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce already knows this, so it is investing in some candidates that are in theoretical danger of losing primary challenges. Regardless of whether or not anyone thinks that people like Jack Kingston and Thom Tillis should be supported for reelection, the Chamber thinks it’s the right move.

While there is a certain degree of populist energy behind more conservative or libertarian candidates this year, the bottom line remains that they are largely in untested waters. Yes, there have been good showings for some “third-party” candidates, but probable winners are few and far between.

Imagine this like placing money on a horse in the Kentucky Derby. Sure, it’s fun to put a few dollars down on the long-shot, but when you’re talking about a serious bet, the best bet will be the favorite.

“Establishment party” is starting to be considered like a profane phrase in many conservative circles. The problem remains the same as it has been for the past six years — the people in those circles rarely travel outside of their pleasant little echo chamber.

They regularly hear from fellow conservatives about how great their candidates are, and get hammered with polling information that is weighted in favor of the people they support. In other words, they’re complaining about party leadership being tone deaf to them, as they sit in their little circles with their friends that agree with them.

The Law of Unintended Consequences: GOP Style

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane right quick. Back to the late Summer of 2012 to a little place called Tampa, Florida and a little event known as the Republican National Convention.

As I reported back during this time, the GOP, for some unexplained and borderline-obsessive reason, was desperate to “maintain the narrative” that the GOP was a 100% united behind Mitt Romney. They thought it would be a good idea to completely re-write longstanding GOP rules and bylaws to keep Dr. Ron Paul from getting the guaranteed speaking slot that would come with his having captured the plurality of delegates in five states.

So, led by Romney’s lawyer, Ben Ginsberg, and the most awful Republican of all time, John Sununu, the GOP did just that - completely reworking and reshaping the entire power structure of the GOP.

As Rick Ungar mentioned in his column at Forbes.com yesterday, the main reason this was done was to put out that pesky Ron Paul fire and also to ensure a smooth process for Romney’s reelection during the 2016 delegate process.

Of course, there is one little problem there. Romney didn’t win, so now the GOP is stuck with Rule 40 that now mandates that a candidate has to have a majority (rather that plurality) of delegates from eight (instead of five) states.

With the very crowed field that the GOP primary season will almost undoubtedly see, is there a real concern that we might get to the 2016 Convention without the ability to nominate a candidate?

Political dynasties are created one vote at a time

Bush dynasty

I have a confession to make. I am part of the problem. I have helped to create the next generation of a nepotistic political dynasty. I voted for George P. Bush.

Since there appears to be a Jeb Bush 2016 media boomlet going on, dynasticism is once again the flavor of the month. People often talk of political dynasties like the Bush, Clinton, and Kennedy families like they are imposed on the country from on high against the will of the people. As many problems as the democratic institutions of our republic have, we still elect our representatives by popular vote, whether they have a well known last name or not. And George P. Bush is the perfect example of that.

Generally opposed to political dynasties, I vowed to support whoever ran against Bush for the state office. Then I started researching the dozens of candidates on the ballot for various positions and found out that his opponent, David Watts, is a crazy person.

My opposition to xenophobia outweighs my opposition to nepotism, so I was forced to vote for George P. Bush. I could have abstained on that race, of course, but the result would have been the same. With my help, the youngest member of the Bush dynasty is now well on his way to the White House.

Does that sound presumptive? It’s not.

Skeptical Millennials Are Not Embracing Either Party, Says Study

Young voters have never been so mistrustful of government.

A study sponsored by the moderate Democratic think tank Third Way that was carried out by political scientist Michelle Diggles, looked into our generation to develop a sociological profile of Millennials.

The goal was to develop this profile and project how current attitudinal trends might shape politics in the years ahead of us. According to the results, both the Democratic and Republican parties could be suffering soon because of the pragmatism of Millennials.

While then senator Barack Obama was awarded by Millennials in 2008, the study shows that his popularity with young voters withered in 2012, mostly because they are disillusioned after learning Obama failed to meet the promises that got him elected in the first place. This could be an indicator that this generation, more than any other generation in history, is skeptical of politics and power players in general.

While this shift may seem positive for the GOP at first glance, researchers warn that recent political disappointments could also translate into resentment toward the Republican Party. Millenials are often socially tolerant, which could put the GOP in disadvantage if it fails to pick up the beat and back candidates that take a strong stand when it comes to personal liberties.

According to the study:

Nate Silver: 60% chance Republicans takeover the Senate

Jon Karl and Nate Silver

Election guru Nate Silver says that Republicans are likely to win the net-six seats that they need to take control of the Senate in the 2014 mid-term election, noting that they could pick up as many as 11 seats in the chamber.

In a segment with ABC’s This Week, Silver, who runs the statistics website FiveThirtyEight, told Jon Karl that Republicans will take open seats in Montana, South Dakota, and West Virginia. He believes that Republicans are likely to take Arkansas, pointing out that polls have shown Republicans “pretty consistently ahead.”

Silver, who accurately predicted outcome in all 50 states in the 2012 presidential election, gives Republicans a 55% shot of taking Louisiana and an even shot of winning in North Carolina. If Republicans win each of those three seats, plus the three aforementioned open seats, they would take control of the Senate.

Silver also gives Republicans a 45% shot of winning in Alaska. He gives lesser odds of the GOP taking Michigan and Colorado, races that are being watch closely by political analysts with buzz building about a “Republican wave.”

“This is the drum roll,” said Karl. “Republicans need six seats. What’s the projection, how many are they going to pick up?”

“I’d say exactly six,” Silver replied, “but it’s probably six, plus or minus five,” acknowledging that Republicans “could” pick up as many as 11 seats in the most extreme “wave election” scenario.

 


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