It’s Not about the Website or the Individual Mandate

Thursday, October 31st, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Obamacare

When discussing the problems with Obamacare we often hear the politicians focus on the failure of the website,  Clearly, the website failure is a great illustration of the dangers of statism and bureaucracy, but there is no doubt the website will get fixed.  They will make sure of it.

The individual mandate is also a tangential point in the scheme of things.  Obviously, there are constitutional issues with it, and the broader implication of the mandate is that government now has the power to regulate (or “tax”) not just all activity but even inactivity.  However, from a healthcare standpoint, this is not nearly the most offensive part of Obamacare.

The most odious part of Obamacare (at least on the insurance side) is the fact that it prohibits insurers from doing almost everything it takes to lower costs and requires everything under the sun that will raise premiums.  Between community rating and guaranteed issue on steroids, requirements of superfluous comprehensive coverage, and lack of individually tailored plans, the system was designed to fail and lead to single payer.

In a sense, this is the crown jewel of Democrat socialism.  With all of their onerous interventions into the private sector, they engender job-killing price-hiking distortions while concurrently offering subsidies.  The ultimate goal is to make the private sector unaffordable and create perennial dependency and a permanent constituency – all the while racking up trillions in debt.  They have succeeded to a large degree and have amassed a high floor of support as a result of their poverty-inducing interventions.  Now they are going for the kill.

As a result of the crazy mandates, which are built on top of decades’ worth of price-hiking healthcare interventions, Obamacare is designed to immediately destroy the private insurance market and slow bleed the employer-based market.  At the same time, they are offering subsidies to many middle class families.  Although most people will not be happy with this new arrangement, they have no choice but to submit to their new dependency status for such a vital service.

Within a few years, the entire middle class will be dependent upon government subsidies for lousy insurance and sub-par healthcare (from all the regulations on actual medical care, not just insurance).  Those beyond the subsidy level will just be subjected to the lousy care without the subsidy.

Consequently, to the extent we ever pursue a fix or partial delay, it should not be a delay of the individual mandate.  That will only give cover to red state Democrats and fail to deal with the fundamental problem of Obamacare – destroying affordable care and creating permanent dependency.  Instead, we need to restore the free market in order to compete against Obamacare.

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The Latest Obamacare Horror Story

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Issues, Obamacare

Last week, we asked for your personal Obamacare horror stories, as more and more middle class families are forced to surrender their dignity and grovel before government for their health insurance.  Here is the latest from Chris.  You can email me your story at

My wife and I have a combined household income of $100k.

My wife works as a nurse and I work for a small business that has never had great medical coverage so we have always used her insurance.

Pre obamacare her employee pay portion of the insurance coverage for the family was $4255/yr.  This was a $750 deductible and $25/copays

Unfortunately, she worked in a regional clinic at the time and many doctors in her clinic decided to retire explicitly naming obamacare as their reason for leaving their medical practices.  The clinic replaced the CEO and began making cuts of the nursing staff.  Seeing the writing on the wall we decided it would be a good idea for her to find other employment.

She went to work for a home health company and not a month after she started the company announced that they would no longer be offering health insurance to nurses of her status and directed us to the exchange.  I won’t go through the ordeal we have gone through with the exchange, suffice it to say that my experience mirrors the account that was recently posted on from Patricia in North Carolina with the exception that I never tried to call the help line.  I am certain that I will not get any subsidies, so I am not terribly motivated to try to work through all the bugs.

So now we are left with my employer sponsored coverage.  Last year the medical coverage through my employer was ~$14,000 with a $1,500 deductible per person

This year, my current coverage costs us $10,563/yr with a $3000 deductible on all of us (5 children) and this insurance went in to affect June of 2013 so is not even subject to much of Obamacare’s regulation.  I shudder to think what it will be when it gets renewed next year.

Obamacare didn’t just cause our health insurance costs to go up, it cost my wife a job.

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Lundergan Grimes Flip-Flops to Hide Her Liberal Views

Monday, October 28th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections, News, Press

For Immediate Release:

October 28, 2013

Contact: Mary Vought


Lundergan Grimes Flip-Flops to Hide Her Liberal Views

Bevin is the only candidate in KY Senate race that will fight to defund Obamacare

Fort Worth, TX – The Madison Project PAC released the following statement in response to Democrat Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes’s call for a delay in the individual mandate penalty of Obamacare:

“Much like Sen. Mitch McConnell, Alison Lundergan Grimes is politically wary of her personal beliefs and has to resort to parsed language on the most important policy issues,” said Drew Ryun of the Madison Project.  “She has refused to state her full position on Obamacare throughout the campaign.  When pressed by a reporter in July, Grimes admitted that ‘there are many things wrong with it [Obamacare],’ but refused to divulge which parts she would repeal or her solutions to the skyrocketing premiums. [7/18/13 The Courier-Journal]  Now, after self-righteously attacking Republicans for demanding that the President address the colossal failures in the law, Grimes is echoing the demands of conservatives.  This is not leadership.  This is a Hollywood-style liberal trying to have it both ways and play it safe.”

“It’s great to see Lundergan Grimes finally notice the failures of Obamacare that conservatives have pointed out for months,” Daniel Horowitz of the Madison Project.  “It’s a shame she didn’t join us in demanding relief for hard-working Americans suffering from losing their insurance during the debate over funding Obamacare.  Unfortunately, like other red-state Democrats, Lundergan Grimes would be a rubber stamp for President Obama and Democrat Leader Harry Reid in the Senate, voting one way in Washington and peddling muddled statements at home. She is more concerned with politics than people. Kentucky deserves better.”

“As the election progresses, she will have a hard time continuing to avoid discussing her stances on Obamacare, the war on coal, reducing the debt, abortion, and the definition of marriage. Carefully crafted platitudes and vacuous statements will not suffice in the long run.  We proudly support Matt Bevin, the only candidate in this race who speaks with conviction from the heart and not with the meaningless double-speak of a career politician.  Bevin is the only candidate who will push for full defunding of Obamacare and a path forward to market-based healthcare that lowers the cost and provides more choices for consumers.”

The Madison Project supports and raises money for conservative candidates that have demonstrated a commitment to full-spectrum conservatism. The Madison Project website can be found at


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Madison Project Op-ed: Building a GOP majority on Quicksand

Friday, October 25th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, News

Here is our latest op-ed at FoxNews Opinion

From listening to the banal musings of inside-the-beltway Republicans, one would come away with the impression that we are just six Senate seats away from curing all our political and policy ills.

These wizards of smart believe that we must refrain from engaging in risky policy battles until after the next election, when presumably, we stand to win back the Senate.

To that end, they accuse some conservative groups of working to undermine a Republican majority, both by engaging in “unwinnable” fights and by working to replace incumbent Republicans instead of focusing exclusively on growing our numbers from 45 senators to 51.

This line of thought obfuscates an inconvenient truth about the state of the Senate GOP Conference, and prevents Republicans from working to build an enduring conservative majority in the Senate.

Conservatives need to confront the fact that Democrats enjoy a defacto 75-80 seat-governing majority on many critical issues.

Read more at FoxNews

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Stopping the Amnesty Train in its Tracks

Thursday, October 24th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Immigration

Over the past few years, Republicans have emphatically declared that they are unable to block a bad law, Obamacare, from going into effect as long as Obama is in the White House.  Yet, amazingly, some of them think they can pass new meritorious legislation that would be politically advantageous to Republicans.  That’s why we hear the endless talk of tax reform and fixes to the entitlements.  The most absurd idea – one that just won’t die – is that we can somehow pass “immigration reform” with Obama as president in a way that will work for us.

What better way to reward the President for his malfeasance over Obamacare than by passing amnesty?  This is what passes for logic with inside-the-beltway Republicans.

Instead of going on offense and attacking Obama for endangering our national security and granting welfare to illegals, Republicans are playing defense in their public remarks.  Speaker Boehner said that” immigration reform is an important subject that needs to be addressed.”

Really?  What are your principles for “immigration reform?”  When does it need to be addressed?  When Obama is still in the White House?

Meanwhile, Politico is reporting that House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa is crafting an amnesty bill:

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is planning to release legislation next week that would provide legal status for six years to undocumented immigrants in the United States, he said in an interview Wednesday.

Issa, an influential Republican who leads the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, described the legislation as a “come-from-the-shadows” effort that would allow the government to do a full accounting of those who are in the U.S. illegally. Immigrants in this new status would be able to travel to their native country while on this temporary visa, he said.

“It’s halfway – and it always has been – halfway between full amnesty and simply rejecting people,” Issa told POLITICO on Wednesday. “I think if we’re going to break this logjam that’s occurred for my whole 13 years I’ve been in Congress, we have to find middle ground.”

Rep. Issa has done a great job on the oversight function of Congress.  With so many egregious administrative power grabs under investigation, he’d be wise to stay away from legislation and focus on oversight.  If he wants to venture into immigration policy, he should investigate all of Obama’s usurpation of powers as it relates to following immigration and border security laws.

As we speak, Obama is pushing amnesty full-throttle in an attempt to distract from Obamacare.  Concurrently, “Republican” peddlers of amnesty are lobbying hard for Obama and the Democrats to steer the discussion back to immigration.

Throughout the debate over the showdown, we were accused of diverting attention from Obamacare’s failures by fighting Obamacare in the budget.  Well, one would expect those same voices to express their dismay over Republicans bailing Obama out of his misery and handing him the crown jewel of his second term on a silver platter.

Irrespective of your views on this issue and the long term strategy, it defies logic to think that you can pass a worthy immigration bill with the Democrats in control of the White House and the Senate.  It defies logic to steer the discussion away from Obama.  Yes, pursuing such a treacherous path should qualify for the label of Republican-in-name-only – literally.

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Can We at Least End Fourth-Party Payer in Healthcare?

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Issues, Obamacare

Like every other major federal intervention into the private economy, Obamacare was foisted upon us under the guise of solving a crisis.  In this case, they proposed a complete government takeover of healthcare for all Americans – all for the supposed goal of covering those who are uninsured.  Never mind that even after Obamacare is implemented and destroys the market for those who are already insured there will still be at least 30 million uninsured.

But like most government interventions, this problem has been engendered by previous government intrusions into healthcare.  The federal government’s officious involvement in the insurance market is the pre-existing condition to most of the cost issues associated with healthcare.  While nothing short of utopia will ever offer full quality health insurance to every individual in the country, the government-induced market distortions have expanded and magnified the problem for those who are uninsured.

For this piece I’d like to focus on the man-made problem of employer-based health insurance.  Who on earth thinks it’s a good idea for access to insurance to be tied to employment?  It’s bad enough that government interventions over the years has encouraged a market where a third party; namely, an insurance company, is responsible for primary payment of all healthcare fees, not just catastrophic or large-scale health costs.  We are stuck with a fourth-party payer system in which employers pay for that insurance.

In 1942, Congress passed the Stabilization Act, which instituted wage controls in the workforce.  Like every other deleterious government intervention, the wage controls led to unintended consequences.  In order to compete in the labor market, employers began to look for other means of compensation to attract talent and reward productive employees.  This gave rise to the tax exemption for employer-provided health insurance officially created by a 1954 IRS ruling. Concurrently, labor unions began engaging in collective bargaining for fringe benefits in addition to wages.

Consequently, over the following decade it became standard for employers to offer health insurance as part of an employee’s compensation package.  This in turn distorted the market and tilted the playing field away from the individual. It also dramatically spiked the cost of health insurance by over-utilizing health coverage and generating artificially increased demand.  This system also shielded consumers from the real cost of the coverage.  Hence, we are now stuck with a situation where those who don’t enjoy employer-provided coverage are holding the bag of higher costs – all brought to you by government’s infringement on the free market.

Now, Obamacare has exacerbated that problem and has actually punished those who buy private insurance – the very people who help lower the cost of healthcare.  As someone who doesn’t enjoy tax-exempt employer-provided insurance, I purchased a private plan for my family.  Given that we were using our own money, we were cost conscience and purchased the cheapest plan that suited our needs.  Our premium was $440 a month with a $5,000 deductible and $10,000 cap on out-of-pocket costs.  But all primary care visits and generic drug prescriptions were completely covered, and visits to a specialist had a $40 co-pay.  Everything we typically needed as a healthy family with two kids was covered except for emergency hospital visits, which would be subject to the high deductible.  Even that was capped at $10,000 – undoubtedly a high number – but would help us avoid bankruptcy.  Hence, it actually worked like insurance for us, while also covering almost all of the regular bills.  Despite the higher costs of healthcare and insurance baked into the cake, and the market tilted against private purchasers, we still found a plan that was reasonable.

Fast-forward to Obamacare, and now we are stuck without a plan.  We are punished for actually being cost-conscience and not over-utilizing the system.  Worst of all, we don’t get the same tax exemption that employers receive on behalf of their workers.

The best plan of action would be for the government to stop distorting the market and eliminate the healthcare exemption for employers while cutting the corporate tax rate to offset the defacto tax increase.  Imagine trading this nearly-$300 billion distortion in the insurance market for an across-the-board tax cut?  Obviously that is politically untenable.  The next best course of action is to offer individuals the same exemption employers get.  It is simple unconscionable that Democrats refuse to sign onto this commonsense and fair approach.  Couple this with purchasing insurance across state lines, and insurance will become portable like any other product.

That won’t handle every last person with pre-existing conditions, but a lot of people incur the most trouble with health insurance when they have children born with medical issues during a lapse of employment.  Moreover, the rest of the population will have the ability to support their families with dignity and self-respect at all stages of life.

But dignity, self-respect, independence, and prosperity are not part of the plan.  They are obstacles in the eyes of the liberal elite.  They want complete dependence on government, thereby cementing their perennial power.  Making basic goods and services unaffordable is just the cost of doing business.

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Where is Our Amnesty?

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Immigration, Obamacare

Now that Obama thinks he has successfully remade the American economy and permanently transformed the relationship between the citizen and government, he is working on restructuring society itself.  He plans to move on from Obamacare to immigration deform.

Conservatives must ensure that the focus remains on Obamacare.  No immigration-related legislation.  Period.  The idea that we can craft a positive bill with Obama in the White House, irrespective of your view on the issue, is absurd.

However, there is one thing we can learn from the immigration debate.  Almost every supposed precondition for amnesty and the pathway to citizenship under the Senate bill is subject to suspension for humanitarian purposes, to ensure family unity, the public interest, or personal hardship.

So given that so many of us will lose jobs, suffer from reduced income, lose our health insurance and access to doctor, pay unaffordable premiums, and lose our self-respect, where is our amnesty?  Where is our waiver for purposed of hardship, family unity, and humanitarian concerns?

Are we less valuable than illegal immigrants?  Evidently so.  To make matters worse, illegal immigrants are still receiving $4.2 billion in refundable tax credits from the same IRS that is taxing our health insurance.

This is not the country for which our grandparents stormed the beaches of Normandy.

Last week, I wrote about my personal story losing health insurance as a result of Obamacare.  I’d like to share with you a letter I received from “Bill in Washington.”  This is a letter Bill sent to Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell.  It is a broad perspective of Obamacare and a government-take-all society from a man who is losing his battle with cancer.  It is a quintessential American perspective.  It is what we must continue fighting for in the coming months.

We must not steer the legislative battle away from Obamacare for one moment.  Whether its tax reform, abstract entitlement reform, or so-called immigration reform, nothing will matter if Obamacare is not destroyed.

We must continue fighting for amnesty – amnesty for We the People from a tyrannical government.

Send me your Obamacare story to It’s time we begin collecting them.

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Press Release: Madison Project Releases New Web Ad

Monday, October 21st, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections, News

For Immediate Release:

October 21, 2013

Contact: Mary Vought


Madison Project Releases New Web Ad

“Mitch McConnell’s Failed Leadership”


Fort Worth, TX – The Madison Project PAC, the first national conservative PAC to endorse Matt Bevin in the Kentucky Senate race, released a new web ad highlighting Senator Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) failed leadership in the Senate.

To watch Madison Project PAC’s new web ad click here.

“Senator Mitch McConnell has shown time and time again that when conservative leadership is needed most he is missing in action,” said Drew Ryun of the Madison Project.  “While refusing to stand with conservatives with a clear message from day one, and often opting to sabotage the grassroots effort, McConnell swoops in during the eleventh hour to make a name for himself.

“After allowing his conference to sabotage the House Republican fight against Obamacare, McConnell unilaterally agreed to surrender every aspect of this unworkable law.  He has also made it clear that he will preemptively surrender any future leverage against Obamacare as long as a Democrat is in the White House.  Moreover, he has set the precedent for permanently abdicating the debt ceiling authority to the president.  Democrats are already calling this the ‘McConnell rule.’

“Worst of all, while the American people were granted no relief from skyrocketing premiums in this bill, somehow a $2.7 billion earmark for McConnell’s home state – the ‘Kentucky Kickback’ – made its way into the bill.  It is clear that the road to a conservative majority in the Senate is not paved with Mitch McConnell as leader.”

The Madison Project supports and raises money for conservative candidates that have demonstrated a commitment to full-spectrum conservatism. The Madison Project website can be found at


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Chris McDaniel for Senate in Mississippi

Thursday, October 17th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections, News

Try to think of a solid-blue state that has re-elected a conservative Democrat for over 30 years and where that Democrat voted against liberals in their party on social, fiscal, and national security issues?  There are none.  Yet Republicans have a 34-year incumbent from red-state Mississippi who votes time-and-time again for more spending, more taxes, and weaker national defense.  It’s time for this to change.

We will never win the fight against progressive Democrats with big-government, free-spending Republicans.

There is simply no justification from a conservative perspective to re-elect Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS), especially in a state as conservative as Mississippi. Like many old-bull Republicans, Thad Cochran has voted for endless spending, tax increases, abortion funding, energy regulations, and most recently – funding for Obamacare.

He voted for regressive taxation in the form of gas tax increases, bracket creep, and the Internet sales tax.

Cochran has even voted for unbridled eminent domain and amnesty for illegal immigrants – two issues that are wildly unpopular in his state.

And, Senator Thad Cochran has supported treaties that weaken our sovereignty and threaten our national security, such as the new START and Law of Sea Treaty (LOST).

Taken as a whole, Cochran is not a conservative on fiscal, social, or national security issues.  He rarely votes with conservatives and has certainly never given voice to conservatives on important issues.

But it is his status as the undisputed “King of Senate pork” that has given Cochran national fame.  Throughout the past decade, Thad Cochran has created more monuments for himself than anyone other than Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV).  From shrimp research to local special interests, the biggest accomplishment of Cochran’s 34-year tenure is wasting more taxpayer money than almost any other Senator.

It’s time conservatives in Mississippi ask the obvious question: after almost three and a half decades in the U.S. Senate and six years in the U.S. House, what has Sen. Cochran accomplished for freedom-loving Americans?  What has he accomplished period?  Isn’t it time for him to join the rest of the permanent political class from the ‘70s and retire on K Street?

Fortunately, Republicans in Mississippi will actually have an alternative candidate that they can proudly support instead of holding their noses for a Democrat-lite. That alternative is state Senator Chris McDaniel.

State Senator Chris McDaniel has been fighting for conservatives inside and outside of the state House for the past ten years.  And he will take that fight to Washington, D.C. when he stands up against the Democrats and GOP establishment as the next Senator from Mississippi.

Of all the candidates we have interviewed this year looking to mount insurgency primary challenges, Chris has the most unique attributes.  During his four years in the Mississippi state Senate, Chris has become the “Jim DeMint” of the state legislature, earning himself the status of the undisputed conservative leader.

When we met with Chris, he reminded us a lot of Senator Mike Lee (R-UT).  As a brilliant and successful lawyer, Chris has a sagacious grasp of the U.S. Constitution and our founding documents.  Unlike others who seek higher office and pander to conservatives, Constitutional conservatism is his first language.  He is also extremely well-spoken and articulates conservatism from a position of strength, hearkening back to his days as a talk show host in central Mississippi.

Chris has been a Tea Party leader since April 15, 2009.  He brought the message of the Tea Party to the state Senate, and in 2012 he formed the Mississippi Senate Conservative Coalition (MSCC), a group of eleven conservative senators committed to challenging the big government policies of both parties.  In the state Senate, he fought against illegal immigration, a gas tax increase, and wasteful spending.  While Sen. Thad Cochran was voting for eminent domain, McDaniel was leading a complex battle on the Mississippi Senate floor to protect land owners after the egregious Kelo decision from the Supreme Court.

In 2010, Chris filed the federal class action suit against Obamacare on behalf of the state of Mississippi. And he recently led the fight to crack down on illegal immigration.  McDaniel is just as strong a fighter for social conservative causes as he is for fiscal issues.  Earlier this year, he used his legal expertise to pass the Mississippi Student Religious Liberties Act, which protects students from being discriminated against for their religious expressions.

While every insurgency race is an uphill battle, this one has the easiest candidate for us to get behind.  This is a no-brainer.  You could not possibly ask more from a candidate going up against a 40 year experienced politician.   Chris is universally regarded as the conservative leader in the state, has a base of support, a fervent grassroots following, a brilliant legal mind, and an uninfringeable desire to storm the castle and countermand the failed approach of the Republicans of yesteryear.

When watching Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) stand for millions of Americans during his historic filibuster, it was jarring how few Republicans joined him and Senator Mike Lee in the fight.  Chris McDaniel would have been standing side-by-side with him augmenting the message of liberty, prosperity, and limited government.

The Madison Project is proud to continue its endorsement of conservative candidates with our endorsement of Chris McDaniel. It’s time to send the reinforcements.  It’s time to elect Chris McDaniel to the U.S. Senate.

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Release: McConnell-Reid Deal Raises Debt and Funds Obamacare Without Any Reforms

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Debt, Economy, News, Obamacare, Press

For Immediate Release:

October 16, 2013



McConnell-Reid Deal Raises Debt and Funds Obamacare Without Any Reforms

“…Senate Leadership, led by Mitch McConnell, knows nothing but capitulation.”

 Washington, D.C. – The Madison Project PAC released the following statement today regarding news that the Senate reached a deal to fund the government and raise the debt ceiling without cutting one penny from Obamacare or offering a single reform to its failing structure:

“Today’s deal shows once again that the Senate Leadership, led by Mitch McConnell, knows nothing but capitulation,” said Drew Ryun of Madison Project.  “Rather than working to dismantle the monstrosity that is Obamacare, Senate Republicans chose to hand Harry Reid and the Democrat party a victory at the expense of hard-working Americans. This is unacceptable. Our nations’ true conservative leaders, Senators Ted Cruz, Mike Lee and others – took a stand for freedom and did everything possible in their power to prevent an outcome like this. For that, we applaud them. While some may be discouraged by this outcome, we are encouraged by the thought of adding more Senators like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee to the GOP caucus in 2014.  We will also continue the battle against Obamacare until the American people are given the same relief as Obama’s special interests.”

“What has become apparent from this battle is that we cannot fight Obamacare and other deleterious political ploys with only a handful of committed conservatives,” said Daniel Horowitz of Madison Project.  “Democrats will never have any incentive to change their ways when a sizable portion of Republican senators are cheering them on.  This effort was sabotaged from day one, with a brave few left fighting with a knife in their backs.  We are committed to sending them reinforcements, and based on the reaction we are receiving from the heart and soul of the Republican grassroots, the career politicians are in for a surprise.”

The Madison Project supports and raises money for conservative candidates that have demonstrated a commitment to full-spectrum conservatism. The Madison Project website can be found at

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