Richard Viguerie

RNC Chair Reince Priebus to seek second term

Reince Priebus

With the presidential election finally over and analysts still guessing what went wrong for Mitt Romney, Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, announced on Friday that he will seek a second term in that post:

Mr. Priebus, who took over the RNC in 2011, announced his intentions in an email to party leaders, a majority of whom have already pledged to support the chairman, according to a letter first reported by Politico.

The Wisconsin Republican’s track record at the RNC is mixed. On the one hand, Mr. Priebus took over the RNC when it was some $22 million in debt with a nearly empty bank account. As of Oct. 17, the party carried $9.9 million in debt and had $67.6 million to spend. On the other, Mitt Romney lost the presidential race and several GOP Senate candidates lost their races, too.

Mr. Priebus is not expected to face any serious opposition and no one else has announced a campaign for the post.

While Priebus doesn’t have a challenger, his role in shutting down grassroots activists at the Republican National Convention hasn’t been forgotten. The rule changes pushed through by establishment Republicans were intended to disenfranchise. While scrolling Twitter, I caught this from Richard Viguerie, a still influential figure in the conservative movement:

Santorum meets with conservatives in hopes to save campaign

Looking for away to bring conservatives together even as Republicans being to coalesce around Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum met with movement leaders in hopes to come up with a last ditch effort to make a comeback and take the GOP nomination:

The conversation focused on the struggling candidacy of former House speaker Newt Gingrich and whether a final push could be made to unite conservatives and stop the likely nomination of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. The idea of Santorum leaving the race was not raised.

“It was a discussion of how to win, not a discussion of anything other than that,” said Gary Bauer, a prominent social conservative leader who was at the meeting.

Despite this optimism, there are signs that the wear and tear of the campaign trail and the daunting odds against his winning the nomination are weighing on Santorum.

“He is exhausted,” said one influential Republican who has talked to Santorum in recent days. “He is very, very worried about losing Pennsylvania. He is trying to find a way to throw a very long pass that could change the game.”

That search for game-changers seems unlikely to produce success for Santorum. A Gingrich decision to exit the race and endorse Santorum in an attempt to unite conservatives seems unlikely to happen or to affect the outcome of the nomination fight.

I’m voting for Ron Paul

It has been no secret that I was backing Gary Johnson, who comes closest to what I believe on both personal and economic liberty, for the Republican nomination. As a businessman and former two-term Governor of New Mexico, Johnson has the experience necessary to govern effectively with libertarian and free market principles.

It has been no secret that Johnson has been considering running for the Libertarian Party’s nomination. On Friday, his campaign sent out an editorial from the Santa Fe New Mexican noting this and piece from Richard Viguerie’s Conservative HQ written by my friend Andrew Davis, who works for Johnson’s campaign, making the “conservative case” for Johnson to pursue a third party bid.

Johnson is rightfully bothered with how he has been treated by the Republican establishment and the media during the course of his campaign. But now that he is considering a third party bid, I will not continue to support him in the Republican primary.

I had no illusions about Johnson when I decided to back him months ago. I knew that casting my vote for him was more about making a point, rather than determining the outcome of the race. But with Ron Paul rising and Johnson seemingly moving on — and understandably so, I’d rather cast my ballot where it can be effective and still support someone that is largely in line with what I believe.

To be clear, I have absolutely no problem with Johnson leaving the Republican field to run as a Libertarian and am I certainly not a Republican partisan — I consider myself a strongly libertarian-minded independent voter when it comes to national elections these days.

Revealing America’s Burden

Many of us reading liberty oriented political blogs know, at least vaguely, about the crushing size of current debt and future unfunded liabilities, but the problem unfortunately, is that most Americans are less aware about the scale and consequences, let alone necessary solutions. The producers of I.O.U.S.A. seem to believe they can play a part in the solution by bringing what politicos and economists have known for years to the public’s attention.

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