Lamar Alexander: The Consummate Statist

Monday, July 8th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, News

Who needs Democrats when we have Republicans like Lamar Alexander?

As I comb through his voting record, it is striking to discover his history of supporting big government. He voted for massive energy mandates and subsidies, tax increases, against blocking eminent domain, for expanded federal healthcare, against blocking Obama’s EPA mandates, against worker’s choice, and for every spending bill under the sun. And of course, for mass amnesty.

It is particularly jarring that he is the Ranking Member on the Appropriations subcommittee on energy. It’s no wonder he is being praised by a new liberal environmental group, “Citizens for Responsible energy Solutions,” for his work on anti-free-market energy policy. Incidentally this group is run by the wife of Steve LaTourette, the chairman of the RINO Republican Mainstreet Partnership.

But, perhaps, the scariest thing about him is that he is the Ranking Member of the Education Committee. Control of the education system is the most important priority for the statists, for when you control the children you control the destiny of the country.

As Lamar Alexander asks voters of conservative Tennessee to give him a third term to push big government, I hope to continue highlighting the need for change. Here is a speech he gave in 1989 on education that really embodies his political ideology and reflects the cumulative effect of his voting record:

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Bill Shuster’s Money Can’t Buy Him Love

Monday, July 8th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections, News

We would like to congratulate Bill Shuster on his ability to raise special interest campaign cash.  For the Q2 of 2013, Shuster reported $646,785 in new funds and $916,180 cash on hand.  But all that money comes at a cost to his constituents.

There is a reason why so many special interests are donating to Bill Shuster. Instead of devolving transportation dollars to the states, Shuster supports raising the gas tax in order to fund more failed federal transportation funds that are used for wasteful handouts to unions.  This might be good for his campaign coffers, but not for motorists and consumers.

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Lamar Alexander Fishing for Distraction from Amnesty Vote

Friday, July 5th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Immigration, News

What happens when you bring a Lamar Alexander to a Chuck Schumer fight?  He turns around and becomes a weapon for Chuck Schumer and his allies, albeit an ineffective one.

In 2007, before running for a second term, Alexander rightfully noted that “to regain the public’s confidence, we ought to scale it back and fix the problem step-by-step by absolutely securing our borders first, then enforcing our laws without amnesty.”  Now, after years of voting for more spending, higher taxes, more debt, expanded government healthcare, massive energy regulations and subsidies, and liberal judicial nominees, the former third ranking Senate Republican has become a Chuck Schumer Republican.  He led the fight, along with Bob Corker, to push a fledgling amnesty-first bill across the finish line.

Naturally, his constituents in Tennessee  – a state where Obama lost 91 of 95 counties – are not too happy with him.  So he’s going up on the air with a $180,000 media campaign featuring Rand Paul.  What is he touting?  His fishing bill:

In an apparent effort to boost conservative support, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) has launched his first TV ad campaign of the 2014 cycle with a spot featuring footage of Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) that touts a measure Alexander spearheaded to protect fishing access.

“We don’t want a government that’s strong enough to make our lives risk-free. We can do that for ourselves,” says Alexander in the ad, which touts his work to pass a measure that placed a two-year moratorium on efforts to restrict fishing access in certain areas in the state.

The spot includes footage of Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who co-sponsored the measure, saying: “Nobody wants to say no to Lamar Alexander.”

Fish?  Really?  After voting for mass amnesty and new red tape on ICE agents with the hollow promise of enforcement 10 years from now, I don’t think we will have to worry about free fishing.  The entire country will be voting like California, and fishing will be the least of our problems.

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Mitch McConnell, Student Loans, and What’s Wrong With Republicans

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Issues, News

Here’s your daily dose of pale pastel politics from GOP leaders.

In 2007, the Nancy Pelosi Congress passed a bill to slash the rate of interest on government-subsidized Stafford loans from 6.8% to 3.4%, at a cost of $6 billion.  But as we noted last week, the market distorting effect of government-subsidization of Big Ed is worse than the $6 billion cost to taxpayers.  The cost of higher education has risen at almost the same pace as the government subsidies.  One would expect Republicans to use the expiration of this Pelosi program as an opportunity to bury this bad policy and identify the true culprit of price inflation – the collusion of Big Gov and Big Ed.

Instead of harnessing the opportunity to explain limited government and free markets, Republican leaders are pandering and trying to out-left the Democrats on their own proposals.  They are decrying the inaction of Congress in extending the subsidized rates.  Here is Mitch McConnell’s rare take on a policy issue in the form of an op-ed in a local Kentucky paper:

Students in Kentucky pursuing higher education have enough to worry about as it is—like passing their exams, or finding a job after graduation. They don’t need the added worry of increasing interest rates for their student loans.

And yet, if Congress does not act before July 1, the interest rate on subsidized federal Stafford loans, given to eligible students to defray the costs of a four-year college or university, community college, or trade, career, or technical school, will double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.

What’s next?  Are we going to decry the delay of Obamacare implementation?

Amazingly, McConnell recognizes that the effect of the rate increase to students would be negligible, even as its cost to taxpayers and the free market is profound:

Since the doubling of the interest rate would only impact 40 percent of new student loans and lead to students only paying on average $6 more a month for any new loan, some ask why this is a compelling issue

Yet, he proceeds to explain why the expiration of a Pelosi bubble-inducing subsidy is a terribly consequential thing:

But in this Obama economy, too many college graduates are already having difficulty finding jobs.

I’m not even sure what that non-sequitur means.

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Madison Project Looking for Primary Challenger to Lamar Alexander

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections

For Immediate Release:

July 3, 2013

Contact: Daniel Horowitz

Daniel@madisonproject.com

Madison Project Looking for Primary Challenger to Lamar Alexander

Washington, DC – The Madison Project announced today that it will be working with
Tea Party leaders in Tennessee to find a viable conservative challenger to Lamar
Alexander in next year’s primary.

“The Senate amnesty bill is one of the most destructive bills to come before the Senate in
years, yet Senator Lamar Alexander betrayed conservatives and helped secure its
passage,” said Drew Ryun of the Madison Project. “Last year, Tennessee voters
strongly rejected Obama’s agenda, but Lamar Alexander voted for Obama’s most
important priority of his second term. The amnesty bill is the Obamacare of
immigration policy, as it exacerbates the current system, creates a permanent cycle of
amnesty, ties the hands of law enforcement, and grants enormous discretion to Obama’s
bureaucrats. Even the hollow promises of enforcement will not be implemented until 10
years after amnesty is granted.”

“We look forward to backing a candidate who prioritizes the American taxpayer and the
rule of law over the desires of special interests,” said Daniel Horowitz of the
Madison Project. “Whether it’s amnesty, tax increases, debt limit increases, energy
subsidies, or liberal judicial nominees, Alexander has stood on the side of Democrats
and special interests over the conservative values of his Tennessee constituents. It’s
time for Tennessee to have at least one senator who stands for bold colors instead of
pale pastels.”

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

http://madisonproject.com/

# # #

It’s Time for Declaration of Independence from GOP Elite

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Issues

It’s no secret that there is a deep sense of disquiet about the deterioration of our country as we approach the 4th of July festivities.  237 years ago, the Continental Congress adopted the 1338-word Declaration of Independence in which we declared, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

237 years later, we find all of our founding principles under assault. The signers of our sacred founding documents would roll over in their graves if they were forced to witness the actions of our politicians and courts.

We have a federal government that can now coerce us to buy health insurance, but they evidently lack the authority to recognize marriage as a marriage.  Men in black robes are on the cusp of inciting lawsuits against those of us who wish to be free of the decedent agenda of the left.

We have a federal government that is spending its time and resources catering to illegal aliens and their foreign lobbies while attacking the states that wish to preserve our sovereignty.

We have thousands of bureaucrats working for agencies with the power to monitor, tax, and regulate every aspect of our personal lives and businesses – agencies that are completely foreign to the governance model established by our framers.

We have a rogue administration that seeks to destroy our military from within and pursue a reckless policy of unilateral disarmament.

Taken as a whole, we have a group of fringe radicals who have taken over our government and civil societal institutions with the purpose of infringing upon our liberties, dismantling our free markets, erasing our borders, attenuating our values, and appeasing our enemies.

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Spencer Bachus Needs More Time With Family

Monday, July 1st, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Elections, Immigration

Imagine the Democrats reelecting a guy like this from one of their most liberal urban districts.

Spencer Bachus has always been a big government Republican.  He has supported all the financial bailouts.  He has also opposed efforts to rein in government intervention in public housing, at least until Fannie and Freddie became so unpopular.  He has been a reliable vote for wage controls during the past two decades.  Oh, he is an RSC member, but he has voted against almost every RSC budget.

In 2010, he was one of only 17 Republicans to vote for a massive 5-year expansion of child nutrition programs.  He has supported unconstitutional limits on campaign donation for his entire career.  What about market-distorting farm subsidies?  He’s the biggest supporter within the Republican Party.  He loves all subsidies, including those for Viagra.

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Making the Right Argument on Student Loans

Friday, June 28th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, News

Last July, as part of the highway omnibus bill, Congress passed a one-year extension of the 2007 law that reduced interest on government subsidized Stafford loans from 6.8% to 3.4%.  The total cost was $6 billion.  As we have seen with things like unemployment extension, the new fad in Washington is to temporarily extend market-distorting big government programs, with the full intention of making them permanent by creating artificial “cliffs” through expiration deadlines.  The rate cut is set to expire on July 1, setting off another bipartisan pandering fest to outbid each other on inflating an already bloated asset bubble.

In May, the House passed a bill to allow the interest rates on subsidized Stafford student loans to rise with the 10-year Treasury note when the reduced rate is set to expire next month.  The bill, H.R. 1911, would require interest rates for all federal student loans to be pegged to the 10-year Treasury note plus 2.5 percent for undergraduate degrees and 4.5 percent for graduate degrees.  With current rates hovering around 2.5%, the student loan interest rates would rise modestly to 5%, still well below the 6.8% level that they were offered for many years before the Pelosi Congress cut them in half.

On the Senate side, they were so consumed with passing amnesty that they left no time to deal with the student loan increase.  This provides conservatives with a teachable moment to demonstrate why the government should get out of the monopoly over student loans.  Instead of debating how to adjust the rate of interest, Republicans should articulate the case for phasing out this unlimited subsidization of higher education.

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Time To “Document” House Members on Illegal Immigration

Thursday, June 27th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Immigration, News

It is quite clear that an overwhelming majority of the Senate couldn’t care less what the people think on illegal immigration.  These people live and die by polling, but when it comes to polling on an issue that will create a permanent Democrat majority, they will never listen to us.  According to the latest FoxNews poll, Obama is completely under water on the immigration issue – white voters disapprove of his job on the issue by 60-32, Independents disapprove by 59-32, and non-college educated disapprove by 56-36.  Yet, Republicans are hell-bent on snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, especially at a time when Obama is stewing in a heaping pile of scandals.

They might not vote for amnesty personally, but Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are undocumented supporters of immigration deform.  McConnell’s duplicity has been well documented by now.  He lobbies hard for it in private meetings, but refuses to vote for it.  John Boehner has long said that he wants to pass “comprehensive immigration reform.”  Radical nutcase Luis Gutierrez seems to think Boehner is an ally in his fight to radically transform this country.  They are convinced that this political winner is actually a political loser, and they want to unload this issue immediately.  They will never see the light on the politics of this issue, unless they somehow fire all their consultants and hire Sean Trende.

To that end, the members of leadership will do everything in their power to make this happen on some level.  Whenever they feel something is a political liability, irrespective of the veracity of that estimation, they act out erratically.

Here are my concerns and here is how I see this playing out.

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Absurdity and Decadence Know No Bounds

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013 by and is filed under Blog, Family Values

There is something fundamentally wrong when 5 individuals in black robes have the ability to rewrite the laws of nature and nature’s God.  One need not be overtly religious to feel a deep sense of disquiet by today’s Supreme Court decision essentially eliminating our ability to define the most basic concept of marriage.

This idea that DOMA violates the federalism scheme is absurd.  It never sought to regulate or even define marriage in a way that precludes states from creating their own definition for marriage.  It merely uses the definition of marriage accepted by 41 states (49 states at the time of its passage in 1996) and applies it to federal law.  It also protects states that want to keep marriage a marriage from subsidizing gay marriage and from onerous lawsuits.  It passed with overwhelming bipartisan support.  It is absurd to even think that the Supreme Court should have jurisdiction over such a law.

What we are witnessing now is the breakdown of religious liberty, as today’s ruling opens the door for perennial lawsuits against those individuals who seek to preserve the most basic sense of morality and natural law.  How long will it take before private businesses are slapped with criminal charges for discrimination?  How long before religious organizations are stripped of their non-profit status?  Watching the rapid race to the bottom, how long will it take for the host of other sexual behavior to be enshrined into our laws?  How long until the proliferation of the transgendered agenda?  Woops – that already happened.

All those who have been insouciant towards this issue under the false pretense that it won’t affect them will now see how deeply their lives will be altered by this radical decision.

Amazingly, four of the liberal Justices held that the federal government had the power to coerce individuals to purchase health insurance.  Yet, they are now saying that the federal government doesn’t have the power to merely recognize the definition of marriage that existed since the creation of mankind just for the purpose of federal law in a way that does not place any burdens on the individual?

In its ruling on Proposition 8, the Supreme Court held that private citizens don’t have standing to defend a state referendum passed by the majority of voters when the state officials refuse to enforce it.  Hence, they upheld the California Supreme Court’s voiding of the referendum.  We’ve been totally disenfranchised.  Government officials now have the right to ignore laws passed by the people, but the people have no right to define the most basic legal terms for purposes of public policy.

The one silver lining from today is that the court didn’t issue the worst decision possible.  The leftists were asking the court to rule on the merits of Prop 8.  Had they upheld the CA Supreme Court’s decision on grounds that states don’t have the right to define marriage, they would have vitiated the laws in all 37 states that define marriage as….marriage.  That means that we still have the ability to fight for natural law in the states where we still constitute a majority.

The Madison Project will leave no stone unturned in our pursuit of full-spectrum conservatives in red states.  In addition to electing free market conservatives, we will ensure that all our candidates are committed to using their megaphone to preserving traditional marriage where it still exists.

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