Republican Party

Georgia could be a battleground for GOP primaries


Now that Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) has announced that he will not seek re-election in 2014, Georgia is becoming a battleground for fight between the Tea Party and the Republican establishment. Over at Georgia Tipsheet, James Richardson recently noted that Tea Party Patriots is considering involvement in the primary, which has led some Republicans to worry that the race “will descend into a conservative pissing match.”

To this point, however, only one candidate, Rep. Paul Broun, has announced. It’s is expected that Rep. Jack Kingston, a life-long appropriator and serial earmarker, will soon announce his campaign. And Rep. Tom Price, a generally solid fiscal conservative, is talking like a candidate and trying to contrast himself as a better communicator for conservative ideals.

Even though Republicans won’t head to the polls in the primary for than a year, there are new numbers out of the Peach State that show a close race. According to the survey conducted by Harper Polling, the race is a dead-heat among a handful of House members from Georgia:

Rand Paul: The country is ready for the libertarian Republican narrative

Rand Paul

Given the recent buzz surrounding him after a great foreign policy speech at the Heritage Foundation and giving the Tea Party response to the State of the Union, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was directly asked about presidential bid in 2016 during an appearance on Fox News Sunday.

“How serious are about running for president — and would it be to make a point as your father did during his presidential runs or would it be to win?” Chris Wallace asked Sen. Paul.

“I would absolutely not run unless it were to win,” Sen. Paul replied. “Points have been made, and we we will continue to make points. But I think the country is really ready for the narrative coming — the libertarian Republican narrative.”

Sen. Paul also noted some of the problems facing the GOP, noting that they’re no longer a national party. “I think people want a party that’s a little less aggressive on foreign policy — still believe in a strong national defense, but less aggressive,” Sen. Paul explained. “The young people want politicians who don’t want to put them in jail for 20 years for a non-violent drug possession charge.”

Sen. Paul says Americans want a “different face,” noting also the issue of immigration. On that hot issue, Sen. Paul said, “They don’t want somebody who wants to round them up, put them in camps and send them back to Mexico.”

While Wallace noted that his guest sounded like a candidate, Sen. Paul said that he wouldn’t make a decision until 2014.

You can watch this particular part of Sen. Paul’s appearance on Fox News Sunday in the video below:

Marco Rubio’s underwhelming response to the State of the Union

Marco Rubio delivers the GOP response

You’ve no doubt heard about Sen. Marco Rubio’s stopping his speech for a few seconds to take a couple swigs of water — now known as “Rubio-ing,” because what the world needs is yet another meme. However, the substance of Sen. Rubio’s speech, in which he tried to present a distinction between the Republican Party and the vision of President Barack Obama, is vastly more important.

After the pleasantries and offering giving his extraordinary background, Sen. Rubio went right after President Obama’s economic agenda.

“Presidents in both parties – from John F. Kennedy to Ronald Reagan – have known that our free enterprise economy is the source of our middle class prosperity,” Sen. Rubio explained. “But President Obama? He believes it’s the cause of our problems. That the economic downturn happened because our government didn’t tax enough, spend enough and control enough.”

Sen. Rubio added that President Obama’s “solution to virtually every problem we face is for Washington to tax more, borrow more and spend more.”

He went right after the heart of President Obama’s proposed solutions to economic problems facing the country, explaining that more government isn’t going to get Americans ahead nor will it create more opportunities or inspire new ideas.

David Brooks: Tea Party doesn’t have the will to fight GOP establishment

David Brooks

The fight for the heart and soul of the Republican Party heated up this weekend as David Brooks, whose columns at The New York Times occasionally knock the freedom movement, claimed that the establishment would eventually triumph:

“I think it’s the beginning of a longer-lasting thing,” Brooks said. “There’s been a lot of calls for Republicans to change. And we have seen that from everybody to Paul Ryan to Marco Rubio. Now we’re beginning to see the donor class really begin to change. There is some question: Are they trying to change just the candidates, so they don’t get Todd Akin, or they trying to actually change some of the substance? And, so far, it seems to be just the candidates. One of the interesting things — and I can’t say I know the answer to this — is, how much will the tea party fight back? There has been some effort that they are saying, oh, the establishment is taking over.”
“But my own sense of things so far is that there is not the will to fight among the tea party, and that a lot of people in the tea party are, frankly — they’re not,” he continued. “They are also Republicans. Say, Rush Limbaugh, for example, who is not tea party. He’s more an establishment Republican who wants the Republican Party to win. So I have a feeling that the establishment is going to have maybe an easier time of it than some might think.”

Rand Paul to carry Tea Party banner in SOTU response

Rand Paul

President Barack Obama will give the first State of the Union address of his second term tomorrow night. It’s expected that he will build upon the incredibly partisan, Leftist agenda laid out in his inaugural address at a time when Republicans in Congress are still struggling to find their message.

While Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) will give the Republican response to the State of the Union address, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) will offer a more stark contrast between the policies of the Obama Administration by giving the official Tea Party response:

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., will deliver the Tea Party’s official response to President Obama’s State of the Union address on Tuesday, Tea Party Express announced on Friday.
“Since the President has been re-elected, the debt has continued to skyrocket and unemployment has ticked up, but he has offered no solutions and has shown no leadership,” said Tea Party Express Chairman Amy Kremer. “In contrast, Senator Rand Paul has put forth solutions that would spur economic growth and rein in Washington’s out-of-control spending. We are excited that Senator Paul, a conservative leader and strong voice for the Tea Party movement, will be offering our perspective on the state of the union.”

This is not Karl Rove’s GOP anymore

Karl Rove

Karl Rove and his group, American Crossroads, set off a firestorm earlier this week when they announced the formation of a new political action committee that would intervene in Republican primaries when there is a conservative primary challenger present. American Crossroads has been in damage control mode due to the reaction of prominent figures in the conservative movement.

Of course, the new PAC is based on a false premise. Establishment candidates aren’t losing in Republican primaries for lack of spending money to get out their message — they’re losing because of their message. You don’t win a GOP primary by running on soft, middle of the road rhetoric. You win by, as Ronald Reagan once said, raising the banner of bold colors.

Kelleyanne Conway recently wrote a great editoral in USA Today about Rove’s new PAC, noting that people like Rove can complain all they want about conservatives who lost in races that they should’ve won, but there were even more failures by candidates who had mainstream GOP backing:

Blacks and Republicans: A Historic Alliance

In honor of February being Black History Month, I thought it might be informative to look at one aspect of the history of blacks in America; namely, the history of blacks and the Republican Party. Though black voters in America have in recent decades become a monolithic voting block for the Democrat Party, such has not always been the case. In fact, I think it would come as a great surprise for many blacks today to learn that not only have Republicans not always been thought of as their political enemies, they once had a political and ideological alliance. Even today these two groups agree on a wide range of issues, from educational choice and traditional marriage, to the importance of religion, specifically Christianity, to our history and culture.

On March 20, 1854, a group of people opposed to the Democrats’ policies supporting slavery met in Ripon, Wisconsin with the express purpose of organizing to end the moral evil of slavery. Just ten days later, on March 30th, President Franklin Pierce, a Democrat, signed the Kansas-Nebraska Act, a law which authorized the expansion of slavery into U.S. territories. As a result, these anti-slavery members of the Whig and Free-Soil Democrats would form the Republican Party, and within a few short years had established a major power base in the northeastern and Midwestern states.

In 1856, the Republican Party held its first national nominating convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where it nominated John C. Freemont as their presidential candidate. Freemont ran under the slogan “Free soil, free silver, free men, Fremont”. He would lose that election to Democrat James Buchanan after Democrats warned the election of the anti-slavery Freemont would lead to civil war, but despite the loss in the 1856 election, the Republicans had established themselves as a major party, and would win the presidency just four years later with Abraham Lincoln.

Saxby Chambliss will not seek re-election


We got some good news out of Georgia this morning. Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), who suggested last year that he would break his no-tax pledge to Peach State voters, will not seek a third-term in office, according to Jim Galloway at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss will announce this morning that he’s dropping plans to run for a third term in 2014, a decision certain to set off an avalanche of Republican candidates who will seek to replace him.

Word out of Washington is that Chambliss broke the news to his senior staff this morning.

Politico says that the reason Chambliss decided not to run for re-election is because he has “grown increasingly frustrated with the pervasive gridlock in the Senate — particularly its inability to reach a grand bargain to slash deficits.” Chambliss isn’t running again because he was facing a primary challenge because conservatives in Georgia are frustrated with his big government record.

Chambliss has been part of the problem in Washington. Chambliss voted for every bloated budget pushed during the Bush Administration. He voted to expand Medicare, an already bankrupt entitlement. What was his answer to the deficits he helped create? To raise taxes by $1 trillion. The suggestion that Chambliss is some sort of fiscal conservative is nothing short of absurd.

Boehner: Obama wants to “annihilate” the GOP


During a speech on Tuesday, Speaker John Boehner complained that President Barack Obama wants to “annihilate” the Republican Party and throw it into the “into the dustbin of history.”

Boehner, whose leadership has been criticized by conservatives, explained that House Republicans are facing a difficult stretch. “These next couple of weeks, next couple of months, frankly, the next 20 months, are going to be a very difficult period for us,” Boehner said. “While we want to stand up and fight for more fiscal responsibility, want to stand up and find a way to move tax reform that will help our economy grow, to do the things we believe in, we’re going to be doing it in an environment that is going to be far more hostile than anything that I think we’ve seen for a long, long time.”

While it’s true that there is a tumultuous political climate for Republicans as they face four more years of President Obama, Boehner and fellow House leaders are doing a bang up job of annihilating the GOP themselves.

House Republicans caved on the debt ceiling, which could have been used to educate Americans on the national debt and four straight years $1+ trillion budget deficits, and it looks as though they’re ready to cut a deal on sequestration cuts, which were temporarily postponed as part of the “fiscal cliff” agreement.

Despite overwhelming support for the Budget Control Act of 2011 from Republicans in Congress, the sequester have been railed against due to the automatic defense cuts that are supposed to take effect. House leaders have hinted that they want to substitute other discretionary spending cuts to make up for this.

Conservatives need to get back to limited government roots

There is no doubt that the Republican Party is at a crossroad with many questioning the direction that should be taken to bring them back to electoral success. The biggest obstacle to moving the GOP back to its limited government roots is the political establishment — the dealers and the consultant class — who want to the party to take the road to victory by selling out limited government principles.

This creats a problem for conservatives, many of whom are still trying to make sense of the 2012 election. Many realize the dangers that lie ahead by kowtowing to the party’s political establishment, but they’re weary of trying to stand in their way. They’ve actually bought into the line that the freedom movement is to blame for the problems that have plagued the GOP. Yes, there were some bad candidates that ran in 2012, but the Republican Party’s brand was damaged long before voters ever headed to the polls.

In a recent piece at Commentary, Matt Welch, editor of Reason, explained that conservatives need to start actually practicing what they preach when it comes to limiting the size and scope of government:


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